curried split pea soup with coconut milk

curried split pea soup
Curried Split Pea Soup with Coconut Milk
Serves 6

Ingredients:
1 tbsp canola oil
2 medium yellow onions, chopped (2 generous cups)
6 cloves of garlic, chopped
5 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced into coins (about 1 cup of coins) *I doubled this amount for our batch
8 cups of low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
3 cups of yellow split peas
3 tbsp Indian curry powder
1 can light coconut milk
6 oz baby kale (or spinach) *I tripled the amount of kale we used for our batch
1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1/2 tsp ground cumin
Pinch of cayenne pepper or to taste
Sea salt, to taste

Directions:
1. In a large pot, bring broth and split peas to boil, then lower the heat and simmer covered until split peas are perfectly tender, mushy, and falling apart. It may take longer than an hour depending on the age of the split peas.
2. Heat the canola oil in a  large pot over medium heat. Add onions, carrots, 1 teaspoon salt, and sauté over medium heat until softened, about 5 minutes.
3. Add garlic, black pepper, cumin, and curry powder, and sauté another 1-2 minutes until the garlic is cooked.
4. Blend 1/2 the split peas with an immersion blender or standard blender. If using a standard blender, do not fill more than half full and use care as hot liquids can explode out of blender.
5. Add curried onion mixture to soup and simmer for 15 minutes.
6. Stir in the coconut milk, baby kale, and cayenne. Bring back to a boil for 3-5 minutes, stirring well until the soup is thick and creamy and the kale is wilted. Adjust salt as needed.

curried split pea soup
Ben has a co-worker, Julianne, who is always sharing with us a little batch of whatever she makes at home, and every batch she has shared has always been quite delicious! Without fail, I send Ben off to work the next day reminding him to ask Julianne for the recipe. She’s vegetarian (and a dietitian), so everything she makes it meatless and healthy. Throw in the yumminess that it always ends up to be, and I’m always secretly hoping she makes something else and brings it to work to have Ben share it with us at home.

This curry recipe is from her and so deliciously good! It may look simple, but I say give it a try! It’s such an easy dish to make and it is so flavorful. I’m thinking that I must make this recipe again soon. I was eating it for days after and I never got sick of it! Thanks for sharing it with us Julianne!

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our mini maypoles

our mini maypole
our mini maypole
our mini maypole
our mini maypole
our mini maypole
our mini maypole
Happy May Day! I disappeared for a bit because I had my biggest gal turn 7 and then I was just busy being mom, teacher, and housekeeper that I was needing to spend time away from this space. Other things were needing my attention, so that’s where my attention went. Of course, even if I’m not here, I’m instagramming because that’s much easier to do than blogging these days.

In honor of May Day, we made these simple mini maypoles yesterday with things we had already…

Materials:
2-3 strips of 24″-36″ crepe paper streamers in various colors
Scissors
12″ dowel
Hole puncher
3″ of washi tape

Directions:
Cut your streamers in half lengthwise, so that they are thinner strips. Layer them together, find the middle point, and punch a hole. Insert your dowel through the hole, fold the streamers down and wrap your strip of washi tape around the top. Tada! Give to your little one and talk about May Day and the history behind it.

A couple weeks ago, we were studying the Greek gods in Ancient History, so today we will revisit our Greek gods and talk about the Festival of Flora and how it was a time to celebrate the Greek goddess Flora who was the goddess of flowers (Hence, the name Flora). Then, we’ll probably spend some time in the garden cutting roses to bring inside the house to make it more festive inside too.

These mini maypoles aren’t exactly as grand as your traditional maypole, but all my girls like to do is dance with them anyways. Plus, this way they each get their own and hopefully it will eliminate some of that fighting. Hopefully. If I had really been efficient at planning May Day for teaching and learning, I probably would have looked up more stories on May Day, but I didn’t, so we will just have to take a trip to the library to check some out and read them sometime in May at least. If you make it to the library today, be sure to check out some stories on May Day.

Book suggestions:
The Rainbow Tulip by Pat Mora
On the Morn of Mayfest by Erica Silverman
Lily Bouquet and a Special May Day by Sue Wolfe

Enjoy the first of May friends! If you want another fun May Day project, these crepe paper floral crowns would definitely be perfect for today too!

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lots of pillows

pillows
pillows
pillows
pillows
pillows
pillows
pillows
pillows
All I’ve been sewing of late are pillows. One day this past week, I just made all of these in an afternoon. I had been dying to make them for the past few weeks, but have been busy with some other things, so the first chance I got a free moment, I busted all these out. Actually, I did it on Earth Day, so I consider that to be my personal celebration for it. I used materials I already had and was quite pleased with the result. I used an old tablecloth for one, the leftovers from this pillow for another, and my faves are the color blocked ones. I have one more in my head that I want to make, but I can’t seem to find the fabric I thought I had for that.

I mainly started making pillows because our outside bench needed some, but then kept on going to add more inside. Actually, now that I am thinking about it, there are two more I want to make! You can just call me the crazy pillow lady. I think all my past 3 makes in this space have all been pillows. That probably makes for a boring blogger, but whatever, I’m going with a personal need and right now our home needs pillows. Lots of them! I guess it’s my current DIY obsession. What’s yours?

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out to school: 2/14

TWIN DAY
TWIN DAY
TWIN DAY
These two are twins, born a year apart. True was only 6 months when I found out I was pregnant with Brave. It wasn’t planned and I was quite in shock. When we found out, I cried! In fact, I cried for a whole week! Here I was this new mom who was just getting used to having 1 baby and then here I was about to have another. I had no clue how I was going to handle TWO babies!!! It was an insane time for us. As crazy as it was for it to happen that way, I’m so glad it did. These two are built-in best friends.

They had Twin Day at school and they were so excited about it. I kind of was too. I have fond memories of planning with friends at school about what we were going to wear for Twin Day. It usually involved a white t-shirt and similar overalls (and the same bubble necklace). That’s a close as we got because we didn’t really have the same things. True and Brave have a lot of the same things (or Soul has them), so the ability to get everything exactly the same was easy peasy. Brave just happened to wear Soul’s dress and shirt and they had different colored sandals, but by golly, they were twins indeed.

If you want built-in best friends, I highly recommend having your kids a year apart! I will warn you though, get ready for a lot of happy  (and scary) craziness… and if you decide to add 2 more after that who are also close in age, well, let’s just say my life is never boring!

on true and brave: dress and shirt, misha lulu. leggings, gifted from grandmama. shoes, salt-water sandals.

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chocolate avocado cupcakes

avocado cupcakes
avocado cupcakes
avocado cupcakes
avocado cupcakes
avocado cupcakes
avocado cupcakes
Our friend Steph recommended these avocado chocolate cupcakes to us. When she first told me about them, I was in complete disbelief because avocado chocolate cupcakes wasn’t something I was used to. But I do love avocados, and drink avocado milkshakes, and want to try this avocado frozen yogurt, so why not chocolate avocado cupcakes too?!

We used this recipe (for some reason the sites not working right now) that Steph sent over and it came out great. I did some slight changes to the recipe, like I only used 1/2 cup of sugar, used sweetened chocolate because that’s what I had on hand, and significantly lessened the amount of sugar in the frosting as well. The cupcakes came out nice and round fresh out of the oven, but then slowly sank down after a few minutes. I’m not sure if it’s something I did or the recipe (anyone have an idea why?), but whatever, we just slopped on some frosting, which was also made from avocado, added some sprinkles, and you hardly noticed the sunken in tops.

The girls all really liked and it and I especially liked the frosting. I think that would be my go-to chocolate frosting from now on, especially since it has a much more healthy fat than butter. True’s birthday is coming up and she has been requesting a vegetable cake (where she gets these ideas, I do not know). I’m thinking of either doing this again in cake form or I’m thinking a good red velvet cake recipe using beets. Anyone have a good recipe to share for that?

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