Monday, October 31, 2011

And we're back!

It's been a little while since either one of us updated this blog, hasn't it? So sorry, we've been distracted.

Controlling gestational diabetes through diet is a commendable feat, and the fact that my wife did it with such fierce determination was truly impressive...but it kind of killed food for us for a time. You know what you eat when you're on a diabetes diet? Meat. So much meat.

I have a reformed vegetarian's pure and holy love of animal by-product, and we're beyond lucky to live close to Duma's meat market (where we were able to buy a 50-lb freezer pack of local meat), but chewing on sinew does get tiresome, especially when there are dietician-imposed limitations on what you can pair with your pound of flesh.

Good--no, great--news is that our little guy is here, he's healthy, and the gestational diabetes disappeared the moment they plopped him into our arms. We didn't jump right back into cooking, of course--having a newborn is a full-time job, so we lived off of pre-made, frozen meals for a few weeks. But, as the blog title up there suggests, we're back!

You know what you can't eat much of when you're diabetic? Bread, especially delicious, homemade, carb-tastic breads. So, since delivered of her temporary condition, my wife has been on a bread-making rampage. She took a bunch of pictures and has promised to write up a post here about pulling steaming loaves out of the oven, so I'll leave the delicious details to her, but suffice it to say we are in bread heaven right now--even the dog couldn't resist a cooling loaf and got himself banished to the back porch yesterday.   

Our little family (well, we're not so little anymore...5 and counting) is rushing headlong toward one of the more ambitious goals we've ever had--self-sufficiency. Or less grocery store-sufficient, at least. We've been looking at farms and dreaming about the day we can have some acreage and a hobby farm of our own but, for now, we're struggling to make things grow out of a ground left soggy by a year of near-record rainfall. Tomatoes split and blighted, the cucumbers turned yellow right out the gate...disappointing, yes, but the broccoli did great, our Kentucky Wonder green beans kept our plates full all summer, jalapeños piled up faster than we could use them.

With frost setting in this week, though, we just weren't ready to watch our remaining crops freeze and die. So, taking a nudge from the ever-wonderful, we built a coldframe for our raised bed containing spinach, carrots, chives, and quinoa, and we got it on just in time--this week we saw two hard frosts, but the spinach didn't know what was going on outside and actually doubled in size.


    It's just some dollar furring strips, three half-inch pvc pipes, and some plastic sheeting--maybe $20 worth of stuff. You should build one for your raised bed, too:

Oh, and, OH! Big ups to food blog A Spicy Perspective, who ran a giveaway for a Kitchenaid mixer with some awesome attachments that we WON. The missus and I are beyond excited to get this lovely piece of awesome into our kitchen (we chose "pistachio" for color)--we are going to make so much good stuff with it.