What I Love in my Kitchen

This picture of my kitchen has five things I love.

My freshly painted tiles in three colors. My Bialetti Moka Express stove top coffee pot.  A Le Creuset mini crock my sister-in-law gave me that I use for my kosher salt. A turtle carved out of a rock that Troy gave me. (Turtles and birds are my favorite animals.) In the back is a ceramic tile that Jack made for me at school. It has a guitar on it.

Whenever we are anyplace we might happen upon a turtle, the first person who sees one gets a kiss from me.

I also love my KitchenAid Mixer and food processor. I use both several times a week, so they stay on the counter. I haven’t used my beater since this beauty arrived. I bought the three cup because my other food processor was probably a two cup, but now I wish I bought the seven cup because I regularly make a mess because it is too full.

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE my Fiesta dinnerware in Plum. I have white and plum in the plates which look great on the table, but the white plates show all sorts of scratch marks. (If I had to do it again, I would go all plum.) I particularly love the fruit bowls that my mother-in-law gave me. We use these mini bowls for everything! Yogurt, crackers, cookies, chocolate chip snacks, a brownie, lonely loner eggs in the fridge, measured ingredients…the possibilities are endless which is why we are always using them!

These mini plates are from Target this season. I love the colorful butterfly and that they match the dinner dishes. I bought four matching “glasses” as well.

These are my 8 oz iittala tumblers from one of my favorite Scandinavian shops which is in my hometown. (I wish you had a website Irma’s!)


My Pioneer Woman Cooks cookbook! Oh, how I love you, and I’ve only made one thing from it so far! I’ll be making another recipe this week. It is in the living room on the wall behind the couch because I love reading it and looking at the pictures.

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how would you spend $4033?

I am RARELY inclined to spend $4033 all at once, but if I were I would set my mom up in STYLE at Chez Moi with the kids and whisk away here with my husband.

On the way, I’d stop at Anthropologie and purchase this, this and this.  The shoes I’d only wear once on vacation because I wouldn’t be able to stop looking at my cute feet which means I’d walk into a wall, a building or oncoming traffic and hurt myself. I would also buy this to make me feel better about returning to the chilly Iowa weather.

But, who needs all of those fancy things when all I really needed was this.

Not as fun as travel souvenirs, a tan and shopping bags, but I’m warm.

And who am I kidding? I don’t tan, I burn.

How would you spend $4033?


Voting…in Alaska

I checked my old college hometown newspaper, the Fairbanks Daily News Miner, tonight and this was the picture on the front of the online version tonight at 10:00 pm CST. Here is a polling station which I think is just grand! I’ve NEVER seen a polling station like this outside of Alaska. The picture says it all.

Take another look at the picture just above the ballot intake machine. I don’t think it is Sarah Palin.

Obama was just declared the next President!!! Whooo-whoo! Although I do think with a Democratic Senate, it is going to be a difficult road to hoe.


The Dutch, Tulips, still in Iowa

We went to Pella Tulip Time which is held in Pella, Iowa. This is a festival which celebrates the high concentration of Dutch men and women in this area. (One guy told A this weekend that he grew up in Pella, but wasn’t Dutch. The kids used to taunt him with If you ain’t Dutch, you ain’t much.) I am positive this little girl will not grow up to say such things.

Everywhere you look, men and women and children are dressed in their ethnic Dutch outfits which in many cases have been handed down through generations.

This town has tulips planted EVERYWHERE. You can tour the founder of the town’s home and visit his backyard which has over 30,000 tulips. Seriously. I can barely dig up a 15×2 foot tulip bed in the front of my house without my back killing me.

The town also has a tulip order business in which they sell their own special bulbs. When I got back from Tulip Time, I was asked by three different people if I saw the GIANT tulips and if they were really GIANT. (These were the new tulip variety introduced this year.) Yes, I saw the giant tulips, and yes, they are giant. This first picture is a bed of the giant tulips. The second picture provides context…J’s hand which is slightly smaller than mine. He is 7.

This is my favorite picture that I took of the tulips.

You can’t go to Tulip Time and not stand in a long line at one of the two bakeries for a Dutch Letter. I don’t even like almond flavor much, but there is nothing like a Dutch Letter and a cup of coffee. Just skip the greasy funnel cake and save room for the pastry. We asked at the bakery why the Dutch Letter is always in the shape of an S, and she said two reasons: it was to celebrate Sinterklass Day on Dec. 6th and because an S is easy to make.