Food Revolution and a Giveaway!!

***ETA – This post is “stickied” until the Giveaway is over, please scroll down for new posts!!!***

I’ve posted this before, but please watch this video. It’s 21 minutes and 53 seconds long, but the message is important.

Jamie Oliver has done some great work. He has points that are valid not just for kids, but adults too. As a parent I know I am guilty of not providing the best options to my family at all times. It’s hard sometimes. We have busy lives. David starts two college classes tomorrow, Girl Scout cookie sales are in full swing, plus meetings, it’s also illness season and our family has not been spared. Sometimes the solution is to run to Little Caesars and get two of their $5 pizzas. Convenience is the key more often than not, and it shouldn’t be. I’d rather pull something from my freezer that I got at Trader Joe’s, and while it’s still a packaged meal I can add a frozen veggie and give my family something that offers more nutritional value.

A few years ago I did a food challenge and I did good for maybe a week, and then I slipped, and slipped some more, and by the end of the month I was like “That’s it, I suck!”. Going all out from the start did me no favors. I did it to myself, and honestly I let my slips discourage me too much. I can’t make a promise to only eat home cooked meals from scratch every single day for any length of time, but I can make better choices when I do go out. I can also make a few small changes at home that become a habit, and then change a few more things. For example..

I’ve been buying loaf bread lately. I have a grain mill, and a recipe that my family likes. I need to make bread at home.

I got a new Vitamix for Christmas, and smoothies have been requested almost daily. I know I can make yogurt at home much cheaper.

I know I won’t be able to get all organic food, but I can keep plenty of fresh healthy snacking options available for the whole family.

That brings me to…

FoodRevolution

The simple things I mentioned above to take steps in the right direction to eating better will be implemented by me for Food Revolution starting March 1, 2013. Yes, I know it’s a whole month away, but I want people to join me! I also want time to plan, because I’m a list maker (David says OCD). I want to see tons of other blog posts!

You don’t have to go all out, just change a few things. Eat out less, make something at home that you’ve been meaning to start doing again. Eat more fruits and veggies.

So please join me!! If you decide to participate please feel free to add this little badge to your page, and of course comment right here on this page. 🙂

Also, since Jamie Oliver deserves some well earned credit I am going to do a…

Giveaway

Yes, a giveaway!!

There are rules and stipulations though, of course.

1) Like Gingham Apron on Facebook.

2) Comment here confirming that you completed #1.

3) The drawing will be open from the moment this post is up, until 12:00pm (Pacific) on February 28th. I will put the number of comments received into a random generator and announce a winner soon after both here and on Facebook.

I’m sure you’re wondering what I will be giving away… Well I did say I would be giving Jamie Oliver some credit, so I think that his book Jamie’s Food Revolution: Rediscover How to Cook Simple, Delicious, Affordable Meals is a perfect prize!

Giveaway is over.  Congrats to Elizabeth on her new cookbook! 🙂

FoodRevolutionBook

Good luck, and I hope to see people participate!

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Menu Board

Pinterest strikes again. I saw Stephanie pin a menu board, and the description made me think “meh”, but at one point I finally clicked on it. The shopping list description was not really accurate at all from what I can tell, which was why I was not really interested. I have list making OCD. I don’t need help in that department. At all. I will stalk the stores a few days prior to grocery shopping to ensure I have the right prices, and then I make a spreadsheet.

I do have one problem though. Sticking to a menu plan. I manage to stick to it for a few days, and if I can get a week of actually following my menu plan I’d be shocked. Part of my problem is that I have my menu on my computer in a – prepare to be shocked – spreadsheet. David doesn’t creep around on here to find my menu plan. I’m glad he doesn’t because I don’t need him rolling his eyes at my always open SimCity Social window. 😛

Holy organization batman!

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Oh hey there!

I am SO behind this week now. Monday I started the week with the house caught up, lots of baking bread, and feeling like I would conquer this week. Tuesday after making some bread I got a phone call from my mom saying they were just about to my house. I forgot they were going to be in town! Crap! So Tuesday afternoon was spent with Sophia and my parents. I’m not complaining because my parents leave in 11 days to move to Ecuador.

While my mom and I were waiting in the atrium of the Montessori school for Nola to get out of class Nola’s teacher approached me about chaperoning the field trip the next day. I agreed. That night Nola had soccer practice, and it was our end of season party.

Wednesday morning was spent at a pumpkin patch. The afternoon I took Sophia to a few thrift stores to mill about that are right around the corner from the school. I need to save gas, because the van is a gas hog. Wednesday afternoon Sophia had soccer practice.

Thursday morning I agreed to help Nola’s teacher get her address book in Outlook cleaned up and cross referenced with what she has on file to ensure parents are getting the e-mails. Before I even got started on that it was discovered that one of the class rats had died. There was questions, theories, crying, and concern by the teacher as to what should be done. I did though get to see how the teacher and her aid dealt with such things on the fly. Montessori is far different from traditional school to begin with, and to see how something so sensitive was handled was very interesting. I milled around Savers a bit, and treated myself to lunch before getting Sophia. After that we needed to hit up WinCo to get apples for her apple tasting on Friday, and I got all my paperwork in to the Girl Scout office so I can start a troop. I also had PTO meeting that night. Looking back Thursday was a day of pure crazy.

Friday morning was the “Second Cup of Coffee” with the principal of the school, and after that I came home, got the PTO stuff e-mailed to Nola’s teacher (did I mention I’m the PTO class representative, because I am). Then I went to Target to get my free Lindor Truffles (go like them on Facebook and look for the giveaway coupon to print!), and while I was there I picked up the flyers for the Target Debit card to put at the front desk of the school. 5% off, and 1% back to the school of your choice, can’t beat that!

Saturday was the last 2 soccer games of my soccer coaching career, because I have no intentions of doing it again to be honest. I think starting up and maintaining a Girl Scout troop will be more than enough for me from here out. There was also an event at the school for the PTO I attended as a “vendor”. I put out some photography business related stuff and ran a ring toss. Then we came home and had movie night. Popcorn, root beer floats, Monsters Inc., and a Hot Pocket each.

Today I need to get caught up. Laundry, dishes, sweeping, moping, dusting, and using the chicken that has been thawed out for 2 days now. This weeks Baking Bucket List hasn’t been done. I think I’ll likely combine it with another week or two. I still need to order vanilla beans, and my mom has requested a pecan pie for the train portion of their move to Ecuador. So pecan pie on week 11 will switch places with apple pie on week 4 (which is when I think I’ll do vanilla bean ice cream).

I have other things planned too that will be keeping me busy for awhile. Trying to make things easier in the long run means putting some time and effort in now, and of course my life wouldn’t be normal right now without chaos. 😉

Peach Cobbler

This weekend I got the first of my Baking Bucket List done. I thought I was going to have to move some things around because cobbler sounded amazing, and I wanted to make it. Luckily I seemed to have already put that down for Week 1. Yay!

Finding a box of huge peaches at Costco for $4 on Thursday is sort of what started it. That and I just love cobbler, even blueberry, and I’m not the biggest fan of blueberries (muffins are also the exception). Now put fresh raspberries in front of me, or put me in front of a raspberry bush and it’s on. I digress, though. Peaches.. millions of peaches. Peaches for me.

Okay there is a chance I should NOT be writing a blog post because I seem to have the attention span of my 5 year old. So just humor me.

Pay no mind to the center. O_o

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Artisan Bread

In my Thrift Store Score post I mentioned the artisan bread recipe I’d been aching to try. I made a few batches that all turned out sort of “meh”. So I talked to Stephanie, who has been making the artisan bread for some time now and found out how to work home milled flour in. I spent a pretty penny on the grain mill after all (by “I” what I really mean is “David”), so I want to use it as much as I can.

With some tweaks in place between the recipes I’ve seen I finally found a decent middle ground for my elevation, oven, flour, dutch oven … you know, all those variables that can totally screw up a recipe.

It looks like a bit of a wreck…

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Spelt Crackers

Having two young kids crackers are a staple in the house.  I like crackers, and so does David.  I’ve been attempting to make things from scratch more often, which happens to work out nicely for the March Challenge.

The blog calls them “spelt everything crackers”.  I didn’t have “everything” so some dried onion, sesame seed. and kosher salt it was.  I also did not have a spray bottle at had so my toppings did not stick so well.  I need to remember a spray bottle that is for this purpose.  😛

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