Hello, friends – and happy August!
We just celebrated a pretty amazing event in our little house – our Baby Bean just turned one! Scott and I survived our first year as parents, and our little man is absolutely thriving!
We’re hosting family all over the place this week for his birthday and holding a little party this weekend in his honor. There will be lots of Hawaiian style barbecue and Hawaiian decor in his honor – not just because Scott and I spent so much time there, but because Moana is his favorite movie.
And there will be lots of barbecue because I still haven’t gotten our oven fixed. It’s good for temperatures less than 400. Anything over that, and it starts to smoke.
I may be posting a lot of barbecue and crock pot recipes around here for a bit, just because that’s what I’ve been able to make. Could be worse.
So here’s what else is happening…
Cooking… Lots of grilled things and crock-pot cooked things and even a few Instant Pot things. And as few things on the dying oven as possible. I’m not just whining about it – I did order a replacement. A flex duo convection double oven! We opted not to spend $3,000 on a gas line and instead got a top of the line electric oven. I prefer gas, but I can cook on anything.
Building… Nothing at the moment. We’ve been too busy, and we’ve used the free time we have had to go and take some little trips as a family. I did, however, get a large trough from an online farm supply company that I plan to turn into a vegetable garden in the very near future!
Exploring… Adventures as a family! We try to get out and do at least one thing each weekend, now that Marcus is old enough to get excited about what he’s seeing. We took him to the National Aquarium in Baltimore last weekend, and then to get snacks at Bubba Gump. He’s a fan. We’ve also had fun exploring a new hike route around Burke Lake, near the house.
Tasting… This is an exploration worth a separate shout out. Royal Nepal restaurant in Del Rey. Goat momos, wild boar curry, spicy lamb chops, and more momos. Because you can’t get enough momos. Ever. They also make a Bourbon based version of a Manhattan called a Baby Somm that’s amazing and boast a killer wine list that includes some of my absolute favorite vintages. Yum!!
Learning… More about grilling! I’m perfecting my techniques – and Scott is getting really good! I bought him a smoker for Father’s Day that he’s having a blast with, and he’s taking the Aaron Franklin Masterclass on smoking and barbecue. I can’t wait to taste the results.
Training… Why do I even put this on here? I haven’t been able to run. I’m doing lots of Baby Crossfit still, and chasing him as he tries to climb up the stairs. Well, there’s Baby Ruck as well. He’s been a good training weight in his Osprey Backpack as we hike around the beautiful parks of NoVA.
Sipping… We just recently visited the Winery at Bull Run, and I can’t believe we haven’t discovered the place before! They have a beautifully delicious Cabernet Franc (what else?) among many other delicious varietals, a great family friendly picnic area, an absolutely gorgeous view of vineyards over rolling hills, a great event space – I could go on and on. I’m a fan.
Loving… My life right now. I’ve never been busier – and honestly, never been more in demand, which feels so amazing – but at the same time, I’m somehow managing to carve out time for adventures with my little family and still managing to use meals as a time to gather us all at the table for some together time, for a little breakfast spread of fruit and cheese and bread before the day gets crazy, and for salmon or chicken or ravioli or whatever I can make that all three of us will chow down on when the day is done.
So what are you guys up to, currently?