Butternut Squash Ravioli

Ok, so I’m into butternut squash right now. It’s just so easy. And tasty and I can buy it at the farmers market and it’s almost impossible to get a bad squash…in other words, I heart butternut squash.

I came up with this recipe after seeing a magazine cover and almost drooling on myself while waiting to check out at the grocery store. I make a rule not to buy stuff like that at the grocery because I think it’s over priced (but then I never buy it at all so really, I save a lot this way). So I took a mental picture and decided to try it out. And the results? Delicious!

And yes, CO, this does count as a recipe because you have to roast the squash.

Ingredients:

1 butternut squash (duh)

1 box of pre-made cheese ravioli (like Bertoli and they are usually in a cold case near the deli)

Fresh spinach

Olive oil

Butter

Salt and pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400.

Slice the squash long ways making two halves. Scoop out the seeds and drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Put the squash, insides facing up, on a foil lined try into the oven. Roast for about 40 minutes. Really, it’s hard to let it go too long and it’s better than not enough time. It should be fork tender when ready.

Cook ravioli according to the instructions. When done, place in a tablespoon of butter in a sauce pan and add ravioli to saute. Add in spoonfuls of the cooked squash and stir gently. Add in the basil leaves (diced) and let all the flavors blend together (about 3 minutes). Plate and serve!

The beauty of this dish is that the final product looks way fancier than it has any right to given the amount of effort that goes into the dish. This would be great for a dinner party, especially when there are vegetarian guests.

It’s Nice to Know

I think every mom worries/wonders/prays they are doing a good job raising their children. And I think often, the little buggers are quicker to pick up on the “bad” or less favorable things we say rather than the good stuff (read Baylor yelling “WHAT DID I SAY?? DID I SAY YES OR DID I SAY NO??” in my tone and inflection).

But once in a while we see them doing something that we know they learned from us. And it’s a nice thing. And it shows that maybe they are getting as much of (or more hopefully) of the good things we’re teaching them and not all the “patience lost” moments. I got a little of this reward on Saturday when I walked by Baylor’s room and found her snuggled in her chair with Minnie Mouse, a blanket and a book. She was quietly “reading” the story to Minnie. I watched her for a few seconds before she looked up and smiled and then went back to her book.


Butternut Squash Soup

Mmmmhhh….

I love this because it’s so simple. And because it’s a great fall dish!

Ingredients:

1 large butternut squash (or precut squash works well too)

1 large yellow onion

1/2-1 tsp Thyme – preferably fresh but dried is ok

1/2-1 tsp Sage – ditto

Chicken stock

2 tablespoons butter

Salt and pepper

Directions:

Peel, seed and cube the squash into 1 inch(ish) chunks.

Dice onion and saute in butter. Add sage and thyme. Then add in cubed squash and lightly cook adding salt and pepper to taste. Add chicken stock and cover and let simmer for about 20 minutes or until the squash is fork tender.

Transfer mixture to a food processor. Cover food processor with a towel before blending. Again add salt to taste. Ladle in to bowls and serve as an appetizer, soup course or the main meal. I think it would be delicious with fresh bacon crumbles and a blue cheese salad on the side!

Will You Be My Neighbor

Saturday night we hosted a neighborhood party. We decorated our front patio with the straw bales from Trunk or Treat (which were actually quite handy), iced down the drinks and set out snacks and set out to chat with our neighbors for a longer stretch of time than it takes to walk by their homes with Bear.

I was a little nervous about it because we know and like a good 70% of our neighbors, but we’ve never had a social setting where we were all together. I was worried people wouldn’t get along or wouldn’t talk – and I was totally wrong. Everyone had a ball and stayed until the wee hours of the night (thank you MH for the delicious wine, however my head did not thank you on Sunday am). The kids ran around like banchies and there wasn’t one fight or tear. They were all having a fantastic time playing tea party, pushing baby strollers and dressing up in capes.

As usual, I got great before pictures, but I was having such a good time, I didn’t get any during the party! But here’s our lovely patio:

{I love the lime green and the orange together}

{Straw seating – we also used it to corral the kids and keep the Bear from running away}

{Our newest Halloween decoration – Baylor shouts “BOO!” at him at least once a day}

{I couldn’t get over how beautiful the Yellow Bells were against the blue sky}

{Looking down the street for her buddy, Britain}

{I always complain that I’m never in any pictures because I’m always taking them – but my little lady was not in the mood to cooperate (I’m literally hanging on to her). Oh well!}

Trunk or Treat

We went to our first Trunk or Treat at Bay’s school on Friday night…and we have 4 bales of hay to prove it.

Trunk or Treat is a big event where families volunteer to bring their cars and decorate the trunk. Then all the munchkins dress up and trick or treat – or trunk or treat –  at each car. It’s kind of like a tale gate for trick or treating. And it was awesome.

I signed up to be on the planning committee and when I explained the process to Peter, he immediately said “We’re going to do a trunk, right?!”. A little shocked by his enthusiasm I said of course we were. We settled on a western theme and set out to find bales of hay to put in the back of the truck. I got cowboy hats and bandannas to decorate several pumpkins and LOADS of pretzels, Goldfish and candy to give out. I had two crock pots of chili cooking all day (our house may never get the smell out!) and my mom brought a third to contribute to the total of 18 crock pots and 100 hot dogs! And not one drop of chili or one singe hot dog was left at the end of the night.

We handed out candy and crackers to tons of Bay’s friends and watched her play and interact with all of them. It was so cute to see all the kids and all the parents put so much work into their trunks. One of my personal favorites was our friends Stephanie and Jeff. Their trunk was filled with luggage and departure and arrival time signs. Stephanie was dressed as a flight attendant and Jeff was a pilot. And Morgan their daughter was a gnome…get it? She was the Travelocity Gnome! So clever and adorably executed!

{Holding down the fort}

{So excited to get started!}

{Good grief! When did she get such long legs?!}

{Noni!}

{Handing out Goldfish}

{Hanging out with our “trunk” neighbors who also had straw}

{Other trunkers}

{Did I mention that she and her work team solicited flight attendants for extra peanuts so they could give out real airline snacks?!}

{The Roaming Gnome, Morgan}

{Baylor said “Truck or Treat!!” because we had a truck, not a trunk. Cheeky girl.}

Fire!!

Last week, Bay had Fire day at school. I came to help heard the two-year-olds towards the trucks and to the hoses. While I thought the fireman that came was a little underwhelming and not used to being around small kiddos (fire alarms? Sirens? Not smart to do with 2 year olds!) they did have a blast taking turns squirting the fire hose and sitting the back seat of the fire truck.

I never get as many pictures as I want and this time was no exception. The truck was parked near the road (because it had to be) so I was on high alert for runners. But I did manage to get a few good pics in when Bay wasn’t freaking out over the siren – normally she’s a big fan of fire trucks, but being that close and that loud was a bit overwhelming!

{Waiting for their turn with the hose}

{She loved that she was the same size as the tire!}

 

One Pretty Place

My friend Kristin is one of the most talented people I know. She can make anything pretty. And not only pretty, but cohesive, organized and functional. Her wedding? Spectacular. In fact, I wrote about it almost exactly one year ago!

Now Kristin has started a new blog called One Pretty Place (www.oneprettyplace.com). It is a collection of all things wedding and particularly for Southwest Weddings. It will also someday be a place that will promote her design studio on Etsy.

So if you are getting married, like weddings or just want to read about something…well, pretty! Check out and subscribe to One Pretty Place and get ready to be wowed by beautiful things within your budget and DIY skills!

Yes Yes, I GOT IT.

This year for Halloween, Baylor has been passed down a great (and might I add very well accessorized) costume from her cousin Madi. She is new to Minnie, but she’s becoming a big time fan. The costume has everything, except for the ears. No biggie, right? I’ll just cruise on over to the Disney store at the mall and pick up a pair.

As I stroll into the store, there in the very front are Minnie ears. Except they have a pink bow instead of a red one. Bummer. So I ask the woman behind the desk…here’s how it played out:

“Excuse me. Do you have any Minnie ears with the re-”

No! We are totally and completely sold out. Totally.”

“Oh. Ok. Thank yo-”

And every store is sold out too!”

At this point, I’m pissed. I was sad that they didn’t have what I wanted, but to go and really shove it down my throat that they didn’t have it is a little much. And that’s when I get a little snarky..

“Oh. Do you think you could check to see if another store has it?”

No. I just said that everyone is out.”

Everyone? Even online? Like there are no more anywhere?? ANYWHERE??”

And that’s when she turned and helped another customer. So much for being the happiest place on earth. And the joke’s on her because I did find them at Party City for $6.99 rather than the $16.00 they charged at the Disney Store!!

This much excitement may mean that it’s time for some vacation….

 

 

Weekend Recap

There are a thousand adjectives I can think of when describing our weekend; fun, exhausting, sweaty, family oriented, precious, memory making…the list goes on. We planted flowers, played in the yard, made waffles and watched College Game Day, went to a friend’s surprise birthday brunch, to a school carnival and read lots of books and snuggled in to watch a movie. In a word, I need a weekend after our weekend. But my favorite part is this picture of B after the St. Theresa’s carnival:

The look of sticky satisfaction over the cheap stuffed animal she won and her sucker is priceless!