A Month in Pictures

Month in Pictures | July 25, 2016 | By

I was thinking that maybe I should do a series called, “A Year In Pictures”, instead of just a month, seeing as I’ve had such a bad rap as far as posting regularly in the past 3 or so years.  But, we can strive to improve, right?  Even when we’re in the midst of three kids driving us absolutely bonkers at times.  Right?  

Right? 

Somebody please tell me I’m not the only one going crazy. 

Breakfast Smiles

Really though, as much as they might drive me insane, they are pretty darn cute.  And I really want to document their cute, ever-growing faces here.  So a MONTH in pictures it shall be.  Maybe someday we’ll be able to get down to a week in pics.  That’d be something, eh?

We’ve been loving the warm weather.  I really feel like it’s been a great summer here!  So much warm weather.  Only one straight week of rain since May.  That’s got to be a record.  At least for the last few years.  It’s been hot.  I.  LOVE.  Hot.  

We were given a second-hand trampoline from my lovely aunt and uncle, and the kids have been jumping their little hearts out.  Briar has actually become quite an accomplished jumper, for a one-year old!  It’s so funny to watch them all on it.  (Except when it’s not.  Like when they’re driving me bonkers.  But it’s worth it – most of the time.)

Breakfast Smiles - Briar edition

We’ve been at the beach quite a bit, which is lovely.  The summer outside times remind me why I don’t work full-time.  Being able to hang outside with the kids is awesome.  

Cael - Chopping Help

This month of pictures comes to you from JUNE, because I refuse to believe that July is almost over.  There must be a scientific explanation for why summer flies by like a bat out of heck, where winter only flies at a breakneck speed.  Anyone know why?  It’s craziness.  I suppose it’s because we try to cramp alllll the fun outside things in a couple of months.  But hey, what can you do?  Let’s enjoy it.  It’s pretty amazing.  

Jude - Horseback

***Believe it or not, it’s super hard to catch a picture of Jude smiling!  He doesn’t like the camera.  Breakfast is the best time.  

***Briar loves her breakfast too.  Can you tell? 

***Cael’s learning how to help Mommy chop stuff.  Rhubarb here – freezing a bunch for winter.

***That photo-scared Jude is not-too-scared-to-ride-a-horse-though Jude.  Funny, eh?  

That wraps up photos for June.  I’ll get to July in a few weeks! 

 

Chickpea Salad (aka: Best Kind Of Salad. Ever.)

Salad | July 16, 2016 | By

So, still trying to get this site up and running a bit better (especially on a smartphone…).  But while we’re waiting for that, why don’t we chow down on a nice summery salad?  This is a favourite in my books.  Briar is a HUGE fan.  She loves ALL the chickpeas.  The veg, dijon,lemon juice, and vinegar, with spices make for a really great summer-tasting combination.  Do you guys find it hard to come up with sides in the summer?  Something that doesn’t have to be put in the oven, or on the stove?  (Because, hello!  It’s wayy too hot for that most days!)  Something that isn’t a green, leafy salad?  (Because that’s a go-to, and my family does NOT want another one until next week.)  Ta-Da!  This is your answer.  And mine.  

Chickpea Salad

I found this recipe a few years ago, and I don’t think I’ve made it the same way twice.  Did I mention in my ‘About Me’ page that I can’t seem to follow a recipe? I’m super guilty of that.  This is based loosely off of the Kitchen Confidante’s recipe, with many changes.  It’s super versatile though.  Whatever you have in the fridge!   Or whatever your taste-buds desire.  Switch it up!

Chickpea Salad

If you happen to make this recipe, tag me!  #whisksandwoodenspoons  I’d love to see what you’re doing.  Also, I’d love comments as to what you’d like to see in posts, if you have any problems navigating the site, etc.

Chickpea Salad

Enjoy this summertime salad!  (I’m singing Summertime Sadness in my head typing that last line…  Oh, my brain.)

Also, the next post will include kid pics!  I promise!  😉

**Recipe linked up on Christian Blogger Community.

Chickpea Salad
Best kind of summer side. Lemony, cold, refreshing. And yummy.
Write a review
Print
Ingredients
  1. 1 19-oz can of chickpeas
  2. 1 diced English cucumber
  3. 1 1/2 cups diced tomatoes, fresh or canned (if using canned drain the juice off a bit)
  4. 1/2 red or green pepper, chopped
  5. 1/2 cup finely diced onion (red, green, yellow - whatever you have on hand)
  6. 2 tablespoons parsley
  7. 2 tablespoons minced basil
  8. 2 tablespoons minced mint (optional)
  9. 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  10. 1 teaspoon salt
  11. 2 tablespoons lemon juice (I normally use bottled juice, but fresh would be lovely)
  12. 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  13. 2 teaspoons white vinegar
  14. 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  15. 1/2-1 teaspoon chili flakes
  16. black pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Rinse and drain the chickpeas. Add to a medium bowl, along with all other ingredients. Stir together well.
  2. Let sit in the refrigerator for at least an hour. Mix it up before serving, to get those flavours well distributed.
Notes
  1. Notes: I don't always add tomatoes, because we aren't all huge fans, and it's great without them. So whatever you fancy! In the original recipe, she uses a jalapeno instead of chili flakes, but I never have them on hand. Either would be great, I'm sure. Enjoy!
Adapted from Kitchen Confidante
Whisks and Wooden Spoons http://whisksandwoodenspoons.com/

New Name, New Blog (And How To)

Blogging | July 10, 2016 | By

Welcome to Whisks and Wooden Spoons!

My goal here is to share some great recipes, life learning/encouragement, and internet roundups of things I like or find interesting.  I’m really excited about it.  My new adventure in blogging.  Here’s the story on the new blog:

I finally did it!  Since I started my other blog (foreverfaithandfood.wordpress.com), I’ve been wanting to have my own domain. What does this mean? 

Well, instead of using wordpress.com, I switched to wordpress.org.  Which gives you a lot more freedom in many ways.  You can change lots of different things that you couldn’t in .com.  You can also attempt to monetize your blog.  (Woot!)  Imma going to fill you in on what I’m using for a domain host, for a theme, and how I did it all!  (There will be affiliate links involved.  Which means I could potentially make money from this post.  Is that cool, or what?  Can you tell I’m kind of [way too] excited about this?)

First of all, I have been looking at other blogs, and trying to figure out what they’re doing right and how they did it.  Over at PinchofYum.com, they share monthly income reports for their blog, which I find super interesting.  They also have a website called Food Blogger Pro, which has tips for bloggers.  But most importantly, they have a post about how to start a blog.  This was really helpful to me.  

(Tip from me to you, you should totally Join the Food Blogger Pro Waiting List!  It’s been a huge help in getting an understanding of how things work.)

I chose Bluehost to host my domain, because a TON of bloggers recommend them.  Then I was shopping around for a theme.  Themes are like… a layout and design for your blog.  There ARE free ones on wordpress.org, but they are a bit more restrictive and don’t let you do a whole lot as far as customizing.  There are also premium themes and child themes (confusing, I know… I don’t even have it all figured out yet), that you can buy.  (Genesis theme is one that I have also heard much good about, with a different child themes.)  HOWEVER, most of these premium themes cost anywhere from $55 – $130+!  I wasn’t ready for that jump.  So!  I found a theme that looked pretty great at Nimbus Themes, for only around $40.  It’s called Food Blog (sounds about right, eh?).  It has a Recipe Card plugin built in, which is awesome (and also customizable), and the user guide is a lifesaver.  It’s easy to use, has lots of options, and I’m loving it so far!  

I’m also using Mailchimp for my website email address – to send emails to subscribers, etc.  It was highly recommended, and even has a WordPress plugin that makes it even easier!

I’m still figuring things out (thank you Google!), but I think I’m getting there.  

So the order of things to do to start a blog:

  1. Go to Bluehost – get the cheapest deal.  It’s around $50 for the year, has everything a blogger starting off will need.  
  2. Choose a domain name.  I chose Whiskandwoodenspoons.  Mostly because those are the kitchen tools I use the most.  (Old school, I know.)
  3. Get a Theme!  Free on WordPress.org.  Expensive, like Genesis.  Or in the mid-price range at Nimbus Themes!  Get one that suits what you are going to be doing with your blog.  One that you can customize to show your personality. 
  4. Set it up!  Make sure you read that User Guide (if you’re using Nimbus, it’s laid out in a very readable way).  There are lots of things to consider.  Take your time.  Google things.  There’s an answer to every question on Google.  (Ha!)
  5. Choose an email address.  You do this through Bluehost, on your main page in your account.  Then can get them all sent through Mailchimp.
  6. I’ve also been advised to install plugins like, Limit Login Attempts (so people don’t destroy your blog), also the Mailchimp for WordPress (if you’re using Mailchimp). 

And basically, voila!  There are lots of decisions to make.  Especially when it comes to what you want your blog to look like – logos, font, etc.  But I’m the worst decision make ever (ask anyone who knows me), and I’ve got most of this down pat.  You can always change things!  It’s just a button click away!  

So.  I know this is an odd first post for me.  I promise the next ones will be filled with pictures, either of yummy food, or cute kids.  But I thought this was a great place to start.  Join my adventure in blogging with me!  Or just follow mine.  Live vicariously.  (Seriously though, you can subscribe to get email notifications of my posts.  I’d love that.  Do it.)

Hopefully my posts will be many with not too much time in between, as opposed to what it used to be (few and far between).  I love doing this, and I’m going to try my best to stick with it!  Ta ta for now!  

PS:  This is still very much a work in progress.  I’m hoping to move over all the content from my other blog, and fix some minor things up along the way!