Saturday, April 14, 2012

Lincoln Memorial

I know i've mentioned how crowded DC was easter weekend.  The Lincoln Memorial was shoulder to shoulder packed.  We couldn't even get close enough to really see the statue.  Since we had walked so far, we thought we deserved a break.  so after viewing the grand statue, we walked around back in view of the river and the bridge and tried to sit down.  this is where kendal had a meltdown and thought the sky was falling (or something).  he wouldn't eat.  he wouldn't sit down.  we got a rest but he did not.  of coarse, he was getting to rest while we walked.  we did have to endure his screaming and whining.

and on the walk back there, holly decided that kathy was someone she really liked.  she preferred her hand over mine.  it just melted my heart and i'm sure it did kathy's too!  holly held kathy's hand more than just that time.  it was precious to watch!

 and of coarse we had time for silly shots.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Washington Monument and Korean Memorial

what i'll remember about the washington monument is that there were only 4 stalls in the women's restroom, and a really long line to get in there.

but i did snap a few good shots of it on the walk by it!  and, a view of it from the lincoln memorial.  they are redoing the reflecting pool as well as a lot of the mall so there is a lot of construction visible in the photo.  and people.  have i mentioned how many people there were?

we also breezed by the korean memorial.  kendal and holly had a screaming contest over there so we had to hurry away.  seemed a bit disrespectful to be screaming around a memorial. i did stop for a second to take a picture!

Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum

first of all, we went out and decided to get off at the l'enfant metro stop rather than smithsonian.  at that stop, there are three options for coming out of the ground.  we picked the l'enfant plaza choice because we did not know which to do.  it wasn't the right choice, but there was a starbucks at the top of the 1000 story escalator.  woohoo!  coffee.

here is one from the morning on the metro - taken by holly:

first thing to do:  find our way to the the air and space museum (which will now be called the AASM).  we picked this stop because according to online, there was a mcdonalds there (and there was).  with one really picky child, he sorta has to be accommodated when it comes to eating out - and mcd's is one place he will always eat.  so, air and space was first.  kathy was very patiently waiting for us!  i think we were about an hour later than we thought we'd be.  (starbucks only took 5 minutes.)  our lack of metro knowledge took the rest.  think "which way do we go?  which way do we go?"  we needed a compass.  and a map.  that would have been helpful.

ANYWAY, the kids sorta liked the AASM.  they liked the big planes but it was REALLY crowded so there were long lines to do anything.  there wasn't much to "touch" - and whatever was to touch again had long lines.  it was a really busy weekend in DC.  think NC fair on a friday!  like that. 

and i have this thing about taking pictures with strangers in the background.  so, i really didn't take too many.  but, i have a few.  here are the ones from the AASM.  i'd like to go back, maybe on a day that isn't so crowded.

Monday, April 9, 2012

The DC Metro

gosh, the most favorite part of washington dc to little kids (at least mine) is the "train" by far!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

NC's Hidden Treasures

well, here's a contest that is looking for photos (or drawings) of north carolina's hidden treasures. submissions have to be publically accessable natural lands.  boy can i think of many of these places!  two family favorites come to mind.

first, dehart botanical gardens - right here in louisburg (off 401) is definitely a hidden treasure.  most of the time we go there, you don't even see another person.  you can barely hear road traffic.  you will see birds, flowers, trees, grasses, frogs, fish, and if you are quiet enough - turtles!  my kids love to see if there is a troll under the bridges (they know the story about billy goat gruff).  there is even a bamboo garden and a waterfall at dehart.  you can visit here every week and never see everything!

this first photo was taken around 9am one morning in the fall. the second and third photos are my kids enjoying the beauty of dehart.

the next place that came to mind as a family favorite is blue jay point which is a wake county park.  this was the first real trail my kids ever walked.  it is a short trail, but they were really little!  you can always find plenty of wildlife and plants to talk about along this trail.  plus, there is an outcrop along the lake's edge which is a nice place to watch fishermen out in the lake and ospreys fly in the sky. 

the first photo here is of "willie the worm", one of the many animals you can find along the blue jay point trail.  the second one is my son sitting on the rocks down by the lake.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

peas, carrots, tempeh, and tofu with miso-peanut sauce

this is recipe idea was from vegetarian times (but i changed it to fit what i had and what i wanted).

1 cup quinoa

3 Tbs peanut butter (recipe actually called for almond butter but i was fresh out)
1 Tbs lemon juice (from the squirt thingy)
1 Tbs lime juice (from the squirt thingy)
1 Tbs white miso
1 Tbs minced ginger (from the jar)
1 tsp minced garlic (from the jar)
1/3 cup water

1 - 2 Tbs canola oil
1 8 oz package plain tempeh, cubed (bite size)
1/2 package firm tofu, drained and cubed in the same size pieces as the tempeh (bite size) - it would still be fine without this if you are weary of tofu - the original recipe did not call for tofu.  and if you wanted meat, i'm sure you could replace the tempeh and tofu with chicken.
4 carrots, halved and sliced into half-moons
1 lb sugar snap peas (out of a bag)

directions which are SO easy if you have prepped everything:
1.  start cooking the quinoa:  bring 2 cups water to a boil, add quinoa, cover, and reduce heat to medium low.  simmer for 20 minutes.  remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes.  i added about a tsp of salt in the end but you could do this anytime.  i prepped and cooked the rest while the quinoa was cooking.

2. in a bowl, whisk together the peanut butter, the lemon and lime juice, miso, ginger, garlic, and water.  set aside. (by the way, this sauce would be a great dip for about anything!)

3. heat a wok or large fry pan over high heat until water droplets evaporate within 1 second.  add oil and swirl to coat.  (i used a wok.  if you are using a flat bottom frying pan, you may want to reduce the heat a little since you can't shake to cook.)  add tempeh and tofu and stir-fry (shake) for 2 minutes.  add carrots and stirfry for 2 more minutes.  add sugar snap peas and they stay in for 1 minute.  remove from heat, add the pre-made sauce, and mix it around.

4.  fluff quinoa with fork, top with vegetables!  SO easy, pretty,  and it is so delish. if i had known it was going to be so good i would have taken a photo.  it is good leftover too, though the veggies loose their crunch on the reheat.

by the way, it took me less than 30 minutes to make this.  i mean, get stuff out, prep it, cook it, and clean up, which was rinse out the pot for the quinoa, the wok, cutting board, knife, bowl, and whisk - and stick it the dishwasher.


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