Urban farming update: Out with the old {lettuce}

It’s been two months since our last urban farming update and a lot has happened in that time!

This is where we started:

Our new planter boxes/raised beds

Our new planter boxes/raised beds

And this is where we were at in the end of April.

Fast forward to the end of June: Our lettuce went crazy! I’m pretty particular about my lettuce (romaine heads, please) and with the abundance of kale we’ve grown, we decided the lettuce was taking up valuable raised bed real estate, so we harvested it all.

Our lettuce, pre-harvest (6-2015)

Our lettuce, pre-harvest (6-2015)

So many greens!!

So many greens!!

We made made great use of the harvest with lots and lots of salads!

The romaine part of our harvest. (Bibb lettuce portion not pictured.)

The romaine part of our harvest. (Bibb lettuce portion not pictured.)

We tilled our soil and planted two tomato plants and a pepper plant. And now our beets can see the light of day and continue to grow big and juicy!

Our new and improved crop: tomatoes and peppers

Our new and improved crop: tomatoes and peppers

Such a beautiful garden! So healthy and pretty!

Such a beautiful garden! So healthy and pretty!

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Nutella Chocolate Chip cookies

Nutella chocolate chip cookies

Nutella chocolate chip cookies

Normally, I’m all about the savory treats since Brandon has a big enough sweet tooth for the two of us combined. However, this little guy inside of me has an even bigger sweet tooth than Brandon does and suddenly now I do too.

My pregnancy has been relatively craving-free EXCEPT for my new cookie-a-day habit. Chocolate chip cookies have always been my favorite, and we recently discovered a recipe for cookies that is my new favorite: Nutella chocolate chip cookies.

I found these on Pinterest (of course) while researching a dish to bring my friend Stephanie after she delivered her son. On a whim I made a double batch.  We’ve enjoyed our portion so much that I’ve made them three times since!

I hope that you enjoy these as mush as I do!

Ooey, gooey dough!

Ooey, gooey dough!

Soft & Chewy Nutella White Chocolate Chip Cookies from Averie Cooks

YIELD: 11 large cookies

PREP TIME: 15 minutes

COOK TIME: about 13 minutes

TOTAL TIME: about 3 hours, for dough chilling

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened (1 stick)
  • heaping 1/3 cup Nutella (stir well before adding)
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 bag white chocolate chips
  • 1/2 bag semi-sweet chocolate chips

DIRECTIONS: (My version. Her version is here.)

  1. Mix the ingredients up until flour until creamed and well combined.
  2. Add flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. Blend until mixed.
  3. Add chocolate chips and still until combined.
  4. Scoop your cookies and strategically place a few chocolate chips right on top of each mound of dough by taking chips from the underside and adding them on top.
  5. Chill the dough for at least 2 hours, up to 5 days. (I’m often tempted to not chill the dough because when I want cookies, I want them right then! I’ll try making these without chilling sometime soon and report back!)
  6. Preheat oven to 350F and bake for about 11 minutes, or until edges have set and tops are just set, even if slightly undercooked and glossy in the center; don’t overbake. Cookies firm up as they cool.
  7. Cookies will keep airtight at room temperature for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 6 months. We really enjoy making a large batch of cookie dough and freezing them, so we can make just a few at a time.
Delicious Nutella cookies!

Delicious Nutella cookies!

100 days until the big day!

Wow. Where did the time go!? It feels like I’ve been both pregnant forever but also pregnant for just a few days, when in reality, the clock is quickly ticking down and there are only 100 days remaining until Baby Michael’s anticipated arrival! (I think he’ll be early, so maybe it’s even fewer than 100 days!)

Brandon is done with spring quarter today, so starting this weekend our attention will be focused on the little man’s new room. It’s always best to start with some sketches, some inspiration and a list. So, here we go!

What do you think of my masterful sketching? We’ll see how true-to-life this ends up being:

Sketching out the room

Sketching out the room

And the master to do list: 

  • Remove the mattress and bed frame. Wrap for transport to the cabin.
  • Apologize to Maddie for stealing her favorite napping spot.
  • Wash sheets, take comforter to dry cleaners.
  • Remove ball lights.
  • Clean out and remove the bookshelf side table.
  • Vacuum and dust thoroughly!
  • Buy paint and paint the room. We’re debating between Behr’s Sparrow and Anonymous. Which one is your favorite?
  • Secure baseboards. Touch up with paint if necessary.
  • Hang curtain rods and curtains.
  • Place the art on the shelves and think about where wall art will be placed
  • Empty Brandon’s clothes from the dresser.
  • Replant and move Brandon’s terrarium.
  • Assemble new rocking chair.
  • Grab crib from home-home and set it up.
  • Finish whale mobile.
  • Finish painting ceramic fish and lampshade.
  • Measure dresser, cut whitewood (or other kind of cheap wood) to create a top. (We’re making something like this, but only the top.)
  • Sand and paint dresser, replace drawer pulls.
  • Sand and stain dresser top, elephant rocker, side table, trophy bases and book boxes.
  • Spray paint the ceramic animal heads, adhere them to the wood trophy bases.
  • Make rope basket “zoo” for stuffed animals.

That’s about it. Totally doable, right? Maybe not in a single weekend, but we’ve got 100 days!

Here are some before photos.

The rocker will likely be on this wall. Ball lights will be gone. Pictures are already gone.

The rocker will likely be on this wall. Ball lights will be gone. Pictures are already gone.


We're thinking dresser, changing pad and toys on this wall

We’re thinking dresser, changing pad and toys on this wall


We're thinking crib on this wall!

We’re thinking crib on this wall!


Closet wall. Not much will change here except many of the clothes will change!

Closet wall. Not much will change here except many of the clothes will change!

Let the magic begin! Happy Friday!!

Happy National Doughnut Day! {2015}

My Top Pot favorites: frosted doughnuts! (Not pictured: my other favorites: the maple bar)

My Top Pot favorites: frosted doughnuts! (Not pictured: my other favorites: the maple bar)

Do you know what tomorrow is? It’s National DOUGHNUT Day!

We’re doughnut lovers here on Megan’s Island and I combed the archives for some great reads and recommendations to celebrate National Doughnut Day as the sweet delight that it is.

I’m not sure where I’ll indulge in celebration on Friday, but a new Seattle-based doughnut-ery (that’s a thing, right?) has opened up and Brandon and I plan on visiting this weekend: Rodeo Donuts. Rodeo Donuts has been operating out of the Ballard Cupcake Royale and is starting to sell out of the Capitol Hill Cupcake Royale starting tomorrow! The Rodeo Donut bakers are also bakers at Cupcake Royale, and they make brioche doughnuts that look amazing. Just look at their Instagram feed! It’s the food porn I look at every morning on my way to work. Their flavors rotate daily and once they’re out for the day, they’re out for the day. This peanut butter chocolate fritter had Brandon drooling this morning.

Top Pot is using National Doughnut Day to raise money for Northwest Harvest. While it will decrease our chances of winning, I’d encourage you to stop by a Top Pot cafe tomorrow for a celebratory doughnut and spend an extra $10 on a raffle ticket to win a grand prize of a four-night stay in Hawaii, complete with airfare! Here are the specifics, from the Northwest Harvest website:

Tomorrow: National Doughnut Day!

Tomorrow: National Doughnut Day!

Join us on June 5 from 6-10 a.m. at Top Pot Doughnuts locations around the Puget Sound! We’ll be celebrating National Doughnut Day and collecting donations of non-perishable food items in addition to money.

As part of the celebration, we will be raffling off a four night stay in Hawaii complete with airfare. Tickets can be purchased until 5:00 p.m. June 6 at any Puget Sound Top Pot Doughnuts for $10.

Must be 18 or older to purchase tickets. Winner will be drawn 9 a.m. Monday, June 8 at 711 Cherry St., Seattle 98104.

Happy celebrating! Nom, nom, nom.