Merry Christmas!

In the past I was a skeptic,

although I really should have only been skeptical of early 90’s fashion…

but this year Mr. Clause brought me a fancy shmancy sewing machine. So I guess now I believe 🙂

Skittles were also exchanged.

Merry Christmas from the whole Spinach and Skittles family!

The original Libb says hi too 🙂

How did you celebrate this year?

p.s. don’t forget to enter the Firebird Chocolate giveaway – it closes tomorrow at 11:59 p.m. (PST)

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. Mashed potatoes with gravy, sweet potatoes with strudel and pies galore! While I’m not a vegetarian, I always find it funny when people feel bad for vegetarians on Thanksgiving. The turkey is the least exciting part!

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After a week of half days and conferences, my kidlets needed a little fun yesterday morning. Our last writing unit was personal narratives (zooming in on a very small moment of time [seed] and writing a lot about it), and our current unit is expository paragraphs & essays, (which can be dry and formulaic).

We took a brief departure from essay writing yesterday to remember just how creative we can be in our descriptions. I gave them the lead, Mrs. Spinachandskittles was just about to pull the turkey out of the oven when all of a sudden…

There assignment was to be as creative as possible. I gave them 45 minutes to write and then we shared. It was a great bonding experience, and they had a lot of fun! I decided I had to share one.

Mrs. Spinachandskittles was just about to pull the turkey out of then oven when all of a studden black smoke started to rise from the oven. “What the…” SMACK! The oven door flew open and hit Mrs. Spinachandskittles in the head.

“Is the turkey almost done?!” Mr. Spinachandskittles yelled. As he headed downstairs the turkey jumped up and kicked him right in the gut. That was the last Thanksgiving Mrs. Spinachandskittles ever had.

These kids crack me up. Black smoke probably would start to rise if I attempted to cook my own turkey, so it is a good thing we headed north to my in-laws. My leggings are on, as they are the perfect stretchable pant.

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What was I thinking? Jeans have no give!

Bring on the food!

Wild Blueberry & Cranberry pie

Mixed greens with goat cheese, dried cherries & toasted pecans

White Bean and basil hummus, goat cheese & cranberries, with multi grain crackers and sourdough bread

I’m not the only food photographer in the family 🙂 SIL Kimberly

Hanging with my niece Adelia – we have the same color palette 🙂

What is your favorite Thanksgiving food?

Happy Halloween!

School was a lot of fun today. Remember the rush of Halloween as a kid? Barely able to sit in your seat because you were dreaming about your costume and the anticipation of all the candy you were about to receive? It was enough to make me burst.

Yeah, a lot of that going on today.

Instead of letting the impending sugar rush get to me, I planned some fun Halloween themed activities. We’re working on friendly letters in writing, so we wrote to monsters and described what we were going to be for Halloween. During Readers Workshop I read Halloween by Jerry Seinfeld, and we did a sensory image exercise (while listening to Seinfeld read it himself!).

My favorite is, “Wait, what is this? The orange marshmallow shaped like a peanut? Yeah, we’ve got enough of these already.” I hate those things!

Their homework tonight is to write down how many pieces of candy they receive. Tomorrow we’re going to practice median, mode and range with our data.

Tonight, however, I’m dressed up as a lazy witch, and I’m handing out candy to the neighborhood kidlets.

Lazy witch = hat, black sports bra, black t-shirt, black yoga pants and black socks. I got lots of compliments on my hat, however. And that is what I live for. Compliments from kids on my sense of style. Don’t be jealous. You know you do to.

I have a mask on too, however, as I live in the neighborhood I teach in and I’d prefer if my students don’t know where I live. I’ve had three kidlets from my school so far, including one from the class next door, and none of them recognized me.

In between dishing out the goods I’m working on our meal plan for this week. I barely have any of it written, so instead of Meal Plan Monday, I’m bringing you a recipe. In the words of Chelsey, I’m sorry I’m not sorry.

Chicken Burlattas

for the black bean version, click here

Yields 10 burlattas

Ingredients

1 cup dry short grain brown rice

3 cups shredded chicken (leftover rotisserie chicken from Costco works great! Or 2 chicken breasts)

2.5 cups shredded Mexican cheese, divided

2 14 oz cans red enchilada sauce

1/2 a medium yellow onion, diced

10 flour tortillas (We prefer Guerrero for this recipe)

Directions

If making your own chicken, (rather than using leftover rotisserie chicken), bring a large pot of water and place chicken breast inside. Cook 20 minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink in the center. Remove from water with a slotted spoon and shred.

Meanwhile, bring brown rice and 2 cups water to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 45 minutes.

Once rice is cooked and chicken is shredded, add both to a large bowl. Add 1 can of enchilada sauce, 2 cups cheese and the diced onion. Mix well. Split mixture evenly between 10 tortillas. Place in a 9×13 glass pan, sprayed with cooking spray, or split between two 8×8 glass pans. Top tortillas with the second can of enchilada sauce and remaining cheese.

Bake 30 minutes. Serve topped with plain Greek yogurt or sour cream.

Enjoy!

I split them between two pans, one lined with aluminum foil for freezing. I flash froze the whole pan for 1-2 hours. Then I removed the burlattas from the pan and wrapped them with more aluminum foil. They will keep up to 6 months.

How did you celebrate Halloween? Did you dress up?