Eating Like a Grown Up

grown-up-food

Maybe it’s because I’m transitioning from kid life to grown up life myself, but I’ve been fascinated by growing up, “adulting”and the weird transitional period that my peers and I are going through. Personally, I find the word adulting kind of disappointing, as if we’re just going through the motions of growing up, without accepting the responsibility that comes along with being grown. I’m excited about making those conscious adult decisions, whether its about how I’m going to treat people, or how I’ll fill my belly!

This lunch is reeeeal simple, but it represents a lot of growing when I really think about it. Three important things: I am now friends with spinach! I used to avoid it and its earthy taste and spongy texture, preferring lettuce for my greens count. But for some reason, last time I was shopping, I grabbed a bag of spinach and we’ve been making up for lost time. It works in a salad (as per my last post) but the really awesome can’t-be-beat-by-lettuce part is that is works cooked too! Just thinking about trying to throw chopped lettuce into an omelette is kinda gross. But spinach can go anywhere, it makes everything healthier, and pairs well with my old fave, mushrooms.

Next, I cooked my eggs like a grown up! I used up all my cheese in a super yummy cauliflower cheese soup which I may or may not share eventually, but I wanted that extra texture or flavor in this. I made do by letting my eggs cook a little runny. They were soft and flavorful and I could taste the yolk and I liked it! I also ate some of this with salsa, which I almost never do, having an aversion to condiments in general, but this time, salsa, runny eggs, spinach, and mushrooms seemed like the perfect combo.

Lastly, epitome of responsibility: I used so many leftovers! One exciting development in my meal planning process is my use of leftovers. I’m used to my huge family eating up everything, so I forget about that half a bag of spinach sitting in the crisper drawer. Well, here I used a whole big handful or two, plus two mushrooms that had nowhere else to go, and (in the pursuit of using things up) 4 pieces of (turkey) bacon. If it needs to be eaten, I’m not complaining! Last time I bought bacon, I used it for one or two things, and then promptly forgot about it until I fished it out a a drawer fuzzy with mold. That is not going to happen this time! I will put turkey bacon in everything if I have to!

The formula of throwing together leftovers with an egg and calling it a meal is one of my favorite responsible cooking moves, and so simple, it doesn’t need a recipe. But just in case you don’t know that you’re supposed to crack an egg over some veggies, here’s what I did:

Fry 4 strips of bacon in cast iron skillet (or any skillet, really),

Chop up two mushrooms and two fistfuls of spinach,

When bacon’s done cooking, set it aside, then dump the spinach and mushrooms into the hot pan.

Let the spinach get nice and soft, then crack two eggs into the pan.

Let the eggs sit while cooking at first, keeping the yolks whole.

Then, begin to fold or flip mixture so that the eggs are runny and combined into the spinach and mushrooms.

Chop bacon into bite-size pieces and add after the eggs + spinach mix are combined

Turn off the heat when the eggs reach desired runniness, and eat them!

 

 

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Wonder Salad

15942702_1567834053232677_1577339790_oTurns out, all it takes to get back to blogging is a salad. I’ve been itching to share the excitement of things like this simple salad, and figured I may as well dust off the old blog and switch things up a bit. It is, after all, A Changing Assortment. I’m in college, now responsible for my own meals, still knitting and sewing sometimes, making new stuff like art prints, and have gotten better at both writing and being less stiff when posing for pictures 😉

I’ve been planning my meals a little bit more frequently (like, within the last week, hello New Year!) and it is blowing my mind. Last semester was my first of being off the meal plan, and while I rejoiced in the fact that I didn’t have to eat in the cafeteria anymore, I had a lousy structure for feeding myself.There were high points, of course, like discovering how simple and awesome homemade pizza is, some excellent muffins, thrown together nachos, and sharing Roomie Dinners with the 3 other girls in my room.  But the lack of planning on my part turned highly edible, but uninspired food: eating lots of pasta, cheese and crackers, and occasionally a giant pot of soup that I would slowly get sick of over the course of a week.

This semester, I plan to track my grocery spending and buy ingredients with the intention of making specific things with them. Before, I tried eating from my throw-together stash of staples every night. Now, I have a plan for that head of cauliflower, and won’t buy that 2nd can of stewed tomatoes “just in case”.

So far this year (week…) I have stumbled across the easiest ever meal planning method. At night, I get in some journaling about the day, then, I write out a little schedule:

Breakfast-fruit and peanut butter toast

Lunch-Leftover spaghetti and meatballs, maybe a piece of fruit

Supper-Spaghetti again, but also a fruit salad

No big extensive list, no advanced planning or spreadsheet or ethnic theme, just an outline of what I kinda feel like eating tomorrow. I also shop with a few recipes in mind, but this system means that I can adjust the amount of meals I prepare to the amount of leftovers I have to use up.

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So, this salad, this beautiful salad. By definition this whole thing was thrown together, and I felt so accomplished knowing what ingredients would make it special. I threw together:

2 handfuls of torn up spinach

1/2 pear, sliced up

small handful of walnuts

a cluster of pomegranate pips

While assembling these ingredients, I realized that the bottled italian dressing I had in mind wasn’t gonna cut it. So I looked up a ratio for vinaigrette (found here) and used:

1 tbs apple cider vinegar

3 tbs olive oil

a squirt of honey

sprinkling of Himalayan sea salt

a quick twist from the pepper grinder

pour all that into a container, pop on the lid and shake it for a bit, and voila! A perfect complement to a light, fruit filled salad.

I am still patting myself on the back for this, even though it was super easy. How cool that I can make nourishing, exciting food for myself. (And nerd out about salad for a bit…) Wonder salad indeed.

 

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Retro Tiny Pocket Tank

 

Tiny Pocket Tank I’m back from a mini family vacation in Wisconsin, and am heading off to New York/Boston tomorrow, (So exciting! I’m hoping to see Purl Soho and stop in at the Webs yarn warehouse among family visiting and such!) so while I’ve been making a few things here and there, I haven’t gotten many projects finished. Today I’m going to share what I wore to church a few weeks ago. This is one of my favorite outfits- I feel pretty and fancy in the sequined circle skirt, and the handmade top complements it and makes a bold statement on its own. It’s so fun putting two items together that are both super patterned and great stand alone pieces. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, but it’s nice not being afraid of my clothes and constraining my style!Hello, sparkly skirt!I’d been looking for a go-to summer tank top pattern, and when I saw Grainline Studio’s Tiny Pocket Tank Pattern, it looked perfect! I raised the neckline by 2″. I might even raise it more next time. I had to adjust the top quite a bit, doing an SBA (small bust adjustment), and it ended up changing the placement  of the side seams (they angle out differently, if that makes sense). Bust darts are kind of a headache! Luckily, the swirly bird print doesn’t make the darts super obvious. These retro birdies are printed on some kind of synthetic from the thrift store. The manufacturer’s copyright identifying mark along the selvedge says “Klopman Mills – Div. Burlington Industries, inc. 1971”. So it kinda counts as vintage and brand new. The 70s are not my favorite decade, but I love this print! It looks totally modern and totally isn’t! Tiny Pocket Tank  Outfit Details Skirt: Thrifted/ Top: Tiny Pocket Tank by Grainline Studios/ Necklace: Christmas gift/ Leather Headband: Handmade by me/ Bracelets: Handmade by me

Tiny Pocket Tank  Big thank you to Tikvah for the dreamy, green, photos! Tiny Pocket TankTiny Pocket Tank Untucked (One shot untucked. It works super well with jeans and a cardigan like this.)

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When Pastimes Collide…

Running Socks |A Changing Assortment…You make running socks! I’ve been running Cross Country and Track since 7th grade, and I’m planning on continuing them as I transition to college this fall. It’s been a wonderful adventure. I’m so grateful for the team I’ve had. We’ve worn suspenders, full body stretched (laying flat on your back and closing your eyes), made ice cream, and held spaghetti eating contests! I’ve never been an athletic person, and it’s kind of surprising that I’ve actually found a sport that I’m good at. (It helps that there’s no hand-eye coordination involved!) The team aspect has been my favorite part. You can’t help but get closer when you run repeat miles together, right? Running Socks |A Changing Assortment

I got a pair of Smartwool running socks for Christmas last year, and they’re the. comfiest. socks. ever. They also don’t smell, even after a sweaty 4 mile run. I can wear them twice before washing, and they’re super thick and cushiony. After experiencing the wonders of wool running socks, I wanted more! But, uhh, Smartwool socks cost $15 dollars a pair. So I made my own wool running socks. And they are so good. I first tried knitting socks at the age of 13,  but for some reason, sock making skills eluded me until last January. I’ve had this sock yarn, Heart and Sole (with aloe!) since my very first attempt. (I also have a few skinny tubes knit up in it that were supposed to become the legs of socks, but no, elasticity evaded me). I searched Ravelry to see if anyone had come up with a good running sock pattern, and among the few patterns available, found the Maizy-Walking in the Maize socks (apparently the suggested yarn is called Maizy, it’s made of corn fiber) which are modeled after athletic socks, with a ribbed band around the arch. I grabbed my yarn and dpns and got knitting!Running Socks |A Changing Assortment These pictures are the socks after one 5 mile run, and one washing. For the first 4 miles they felt fine, but the last mile I started feeling either the texture of the purl stitches or the seam at the toe of the sock. I’m thinking maybe the seam stretched or slipped farther under my foot. I wore them again last night for our church’s annual Adopt-a-Highway ditch clean up, and there were no comfort issues. I forgot I was wearing them, they were so comfortable! I highly recommend the pattern and the yarn. For shorter runs and walking they’re perfect!

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Warm Weather, Warm Wool

Image This project is officially out of season, but it’s just too cool not to share! (And yay for weather that makes mittens unnecessary! Warmth, it’s been too long!)  Image I designed these mittens myself, with ten-stitch pattern repeats for the colorwork, afterthought thumbs, and colors, colors, colors! Image No combination of colors is the same for any of the blocks of patterning, and the thumbs are two different shades of orange.DSC_8411 Winter’s over now, but these sure made cold days a little more cheerful!DSC_8420

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Yarn-crafted Bracelets

Image A simple little Sunday project. 100% wool, and made with a mix of macramé (friendship bracelet knotting), 4-strand braids, and weaving.ImageImageImageImage

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Button Down Challenge {Day 3}

Image It’s already the last day of the button down challenge! I’ve had a lot of fun, sharing my outfits and seeing what the other girls participating put together. It’s a really neat sense of camaraderie, which you don’t always find on the internet!  Image Now, on to the outfit! I decided to wear my button down like a jacket, over another shirt. I think the stripey shirt looks really cute underneath the rolled up sleeves of the button down, and the solid chambray top and gray leggings balance the mixing of stripes and florals. The necklace is a cameo of a butterfly, with two bird charms attached to the necklace chain. The shoes are my new favorite brown and navy brogues, and I’m wearing wool running socks (seriously the comfiest socks ever).Image What I’m wearing: button down: Target // striped tee: Thrifted // skirt: Thrifted // leggings: Target // shoes: T.J. Maxx // socks: Christmas present (Smartwool) // necklace: Claire’sImage

1 Button Down | 3 Days| 3 Ways

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Button Down Challenge {Day 2}

Image Today I decided to wear a top over my button down. I have a hard time styling this lacy top because it’s so shapeless, but I think I finally figured out how to wear it! It adds extra color and some visual depth with the layers and color combinations. Kind of like adding a sweater, except more suited to summery weather. (Unlike our current weather situation! It was cold and bright outside, so most of the photos include me grimacing or squinting because of the light!)top8 I finished off the outfit with a crown braid and some simple, pretty earrings.top9 What I’m wearing: Button down: Target // lace top: T.J. Maxx // pants: T.J. Maxx // boots: Target // earrings: Claire’s

1 Button Down | 3 Days| 3 Ways

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Button Down Challenge {Day 1}

Image I’ve wanted to do some fashion posts for a while, so when I heard about the Button Down | 3 ways | 3 days Challenge from Bramblewood Fashion, Fresh Modesty, Creations by Callie, and Boyer Family Singers, I decided it would be the perfect way to start! It’s pretty self explanatory-I’ll be sharing 3 differently styled looks using this top over the next 3 days!  I’m going to style a basic chambray shirt. I actually found it in Target’s boy’s clothing section! Boy’s clothes often have thicker fabric and hold up better against wear than girl’s versions, and I really appreciate the lack of sequins and butterflies on basic pieces.

Image I tried two outfits with this top before I finally decided on this one. It’s pretty simple, but the bright scarf, chunky necklace, and blue shoes really make this outfit sing. It’s amazing what accessories can do!

Image  (Wet, wet, wet! It’s a rather drizzly day!)

What I’m wearing // top: Target // cardigan: Thrifted (H&M) // scarf: Thrifted (Oscar de la Renta) // skirt: Thrifted (Handmade) // shoes: Target // necklace: gift

Photos by Tikvah

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Spring Fever Cupcakes

Image Lately I’ve been in a weird non-knitting mood. I’ve been finding inspiring patterns and knitting/crochet ideas, (These shoes! This color combo!), but I just haven’t been feeling it. It’s probably the season change- I don’t want to wear chunky cowls and warm winter colors anymore! It’s still cold enough to wear knits right now, but I’m ready to ditch my winter coat and pile on spring prints and solids! I’ve been sewing a lot more than usual, but haven’t quite finished any projects yet.Image These fancy little cupcakes are perfect bite size knits for my season changing weirdness. Warm wool, but I get to indulge in fun spring colors! Bonus, they’re super quick to knit, and then I embroider them like crazy. Image Have you been experiencing any spring fever crafting-wise?