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Sunday, August 26, 2018

Saturn Peach Galette

It must be the nesting bug (11 days and counting) combined with the longing for Fall - but I've been dying for tasty dessert that made me feel accomplished, and made my family feel loved!

We've recently gotten into quiches, so there's been more pie crust lying around, and I've also now located where the puff pastry is in the grocery store.  
Also, at the beginning of summer we were introduced to a new fruit - the Saturn/donut/flat peach, which if you ask me, is the reigning queen of all peaches.  It's lovely shades of pink and white, and has a crisp sweetness that is addictive.  

So, we bought some at the market on Friday.  Although everything from the market TASTES better, and is most likely better FOR you, it spoils so much quicker.  I had them in a bowl with some nearly-too-ripe figs, which didn't help.
I was searching for a tart, or a pie, and came across something called a galette.  I read a few recipes (I drew heaviest from here), and decided to give it a go.  It seemed pretty dummy-proof, and I had most of the ingredients, so that helped.  Apparently galettes are best with pitted fruits (peaches, nectarines, plums, cherries, etc), I'm assuming because they are a little heartier fruit.  I also learned that pretty much EVERYONE'S looks great, because it's supposed to look rustic and home-made.  Score!!  Also, it had cinnamon in it, and it's rainy and cooler out, which to me screams cinnamon!!!

Here we go!

1 puff pastry (that you've thawed, and had out of the fridge for 10 minutes-ish)
3 cups (approx.) Saturn peach, sliced thinly
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/4-1/2 tsp cinnamon (depending on how cinnamon-y you like it)
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg beaten
Coarse sugar
Whipped cream/mascarpone/vanilla ice cream - something yummy to top it with.
(Next time, I might add some nutmeg!)


1. Preheat oven to 375 F, or 190 C.  (Adjust for convection oven if needed.)

2. Wash and slice your peaches into thin slices.

3. In a large bowl, combine them with the sugar, cinnamon, vanilla and lemon juice.

4. Put parchment paper on a baking sheet, then roll out your puff pastry.  Because of its rectangular shape, I decided to cut the end off, and make two little tarts, too.

5. Pour the mixture into the middle of the pastry puff, leaving about 2 inches around the edges.

6. Fold up the edges.  It doesn't have to be perfect.  Just be careful not to tear it, because if you do, your yummy juices will leak out while baking.

7. Brush the egg wash on the crust, and sprinkle the coarse sugar on the crust.

8. Bake for about 35 minutes (adjust time for convection oven, if needed) - until golden brown, and fruit is bubbling.

9.  Allow to sit for about 5-10 minutes, then serve!


- For some extra decadence, top with whipped cream.
- If making the little tarts, make sure you drizzle/add some of the sugar and cinnamon "juice".  We liked the galette better, simply because it was juicier.
- This tart is one of those things that is best served soon after making - a few hours later it was still scrumptious, but I don't know well it would do overnight.  I imagine the crust would get soggy.

It turned out totally delicious, and when I asked Dan if I should make it again, he said, "yes, every week!"  Sounds like a win to me!

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Quick and Easy Fig Jam

Do you have a bunch of yummy figs laying around that are practically minutes away from going bad?  Do you want to feel like Joanna Gaines, without TOO much effort?  Do you not have a ton of ingredients?  Are you a jam novice?  Then this recipe is for you!

Yesterday, we went to the market, and found ourselves surrounded by the decadent and sensual fruit - figs.  We just had to buy some!  Unfortunately, with it being from the market, they didn't have a long shelf-life, and I was racking my brain trying to think of a way to make them last just a little longer.

Enter the idea of jam.

I've never made jam before, but it is one of my favorite things to indulge in, so I figured I'd give it a try.  I found a recipe for fig jam here, and tweaked it a little (basically halved it - to fit one Bon Maman sized jar approx., plus that's all the figs I had left after snacking on them for 24 hours.)  

1/3 cup sugar 
1/4 cup water
230 gr/8 oz of figs
1/4 cup lemon juice (about the juice of one lemon)


1. Weigh and wash 230 gr. figs. 

2. Combine the sugar and water in a small/medium sauce pan on a medium heat until sugar is dissolved.

3. In the meantime, de-stem your figs, and cut them into small chunks.  Also, juice your lemon.  (I felt particularly resourceful, because we'd already used the lemon for zesting - booyah!)

4. Add figs and lemon juice to the simple syrup.  Bring to a boil.

5. Cover it partially, reduce heat, and allow it to simmer for one hour.

6. After an hour, if you don't like the level of chunkiness, use a potato masher to break it up some more.  Take it off the heat, and allow it to cool.  Then move it into a jar, and it should keep for 2 weeks!  Voila!

For Aidan's post-nap snack, I cut up some bread, added some local walnut cheese (yummm), and then the jam.

He loved it, Dan loved it, I loved it... we all loved it!
What I loved most, was that the beautiful figs didn't get wasted, and that I made something new!

Friday, August 10, 2018

Ocean Adventurer Little Boy Room

Since I recently shared our baby girl nursery, I thought it was only fair to share the "big brother's" room, too!

When we were setting up Aidan's nursery, we did an Around the World In 80 Days theme, so we were able to bring some of those elements with us.

When we were moving to Slovenia, we told Aidan that he would be getting a big-boy bed - and not just ANY big-boy bed, but a boat bed!  My mom has a friend in Hungary who is an amazing carpenter, and my parents had him made the most wonderful boat bed!  There is a working ship's wheel, and the front of the boat doubles as a toy chest!  Less clutter makes for a happy mama!
The boat bed is almost exactly the length of the room (that made for an interesting moving day, lol!), which doesn't leave room for much else, but I think we've made a great, and fun room for our big guy!

Here are where we found some of his treasures:

- The shelves, closet, collage frame, art supplies, white bucket and rods are from IKEA
- The striped bedding (which is reversible, and has sharks on the other side) is from Max Studio Kids.
- My mom made the adorable whale stuffed animals!
- The name letters, hooks, and knobs are from Hobby Lobby.
- We bought the crazy cool (but hard to wash - just saying) rug at a little store here in Ljubljana, but I've found it on
- The antique suitcases (for holding the costumes, and such) are from the flea market in Budapest.
- The cute magnets in the "art corner" are from an artist we found in a cute city here, called Piran.
- We found the mounted shark head at H&M Home.

I love that his bed is functional and fun, and I think we've made good use of the smaller, "youth" room.  Our family room doubles as a play room, so it all works all perfectly! :)

Sunday, August 5, 2018

My Son Thinks Doing The Laundry Is A "Mommy Job"

My son thinks doing the laundry is a "Mommy job".

He also thinks cooking dinner is a "Daddy job".  Cleaning is a "Daddy job".  Making something we call fancy snacks is a "Mommy job".  Making coffee in the morning is a "Daddy job" - one that he insists on doing when Daddy is out of town.  Cleaning up after dinner is a "Mommy job".  Making the beds alternates - depending on who got up with him in the morning - the other unloads the dishwasher.  Daddy puts up the hooks for mommy to hang things in the apartment.  Mommy chops veggies for Daddy.

My parents got Aidan a kitchen for his birthday - because he wants to be just like Daddy.  While his Daddy is busy making dinner, he's usually "cooking" away in his own kitchen - one that has a microwave, unlike ours.  A fact he is very proud of.  
The child has a favorite vacuum cleaner (we have a real one, and a little hand-held one).  He likes to help me sort the laundry, load the washing machine, and push the buttons.  He likes to put the dishwasher capsule in the dishwasher.

So the other day, when I was folding laundry on the couch, and he said that when he got married his wife would do the laundry, the feminist in me freaked out a bit, and in that calm mommy voice we all learn to speak in, I said, "well, you can do the laundry!  And who is gonna do your laundry when you're not married?"  To which he responded, "Like in college?" I said, "Yes."  To which he answered, "You can do my laundry."  I told him that he would probably live too far from me for me to do his laundry, and again, that he could do his own laundry.  By now I'm ready to organize a march, and wear a "She Persisted" shirt.  Then the other half of the conversation came... and he said, "When I get married, my wife will do the laundry, and I'll cook the dinner.  And I'll make coffee.  And we'll have two Slovenian babies, and I'll have a desk."

And there it is.  My little four-year-old is planning his future, and in that future there are chores, equal responsibilities and a desk.  And do you know why? Because it's what he sees modeled in our home every day.  We frequently tell him that we are a team, and that we all work together in our family.  We tell him that we love each other, and so we like to do things that help one another.
After our conversation, my heart could explode - I love how his mind works.  And I'm crazy thankful for the guy who does all the "Daddy jobs", and teaches our son to value the same things.  You know what they say: "Train up a child..."  And we're doing our best.

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Secret Garden Nursery

It would seem that we are just about a month away from the arrival of our little girl!  Since we found out, we have been busy making all the necessary arrangements, most notably - turning Dan's office into a nursery.  The rooms in our apartment are what Europeans call "youth rooms", which means they're on the smaller side.  All that means, is that it forces you to be more creative with how you fill the space - a challenge we readily accepted!

For the nursery theme, we started out with an Anne of Green Gables/Secret Garden idea in mind - which kind of evolved into gray and white, with wood and floral accents.  It's easy get "cluttery", especially in a small room, and especially with kids' stuff.  So with everything, we tried to use things that were multi-functional.  The nursing sofa, for example opens up into a twin sized bed - perfect for fussy nights, or when grandma comes to visit!  The changing table is actually a dresser, the rug is also a play mat, the diaper caddy will also be functional after being a diaper caddy, the shelf is also a closet (of sorts), the baby gym easily folds up, etc.  Okay, enough stalling... here are some pictures!

All we're missing now is the baby!  I have to say, my favorite things in her room are the shelf with the branch, the wreath, her name art, the dolls in the rocking chair, the parasol, baby gym, blankets and play mat.  Okay, all of it, lol!  We're ready for you, baby girl!

Here's a list of where we got some of her treasures:

Crib, sofa, book shelf, diaper caddy, dresser - IKEA
Floral mobile wreath - Alison Michel on Etsy
Ljubljana city scape print - GUD Shop
Beloved pillow - Little Fruit Tree Shop on Etsy
Baby gym - my mom has a friend who is a carpenter, and he built the frame for us.  We specifically asked that it would be collapsable, and that the center rod would come out - this way we could take the toys off to be used in other situations as well.
Baby gym hanging toys - Baby Dreamland Toys on Etsy
Clothes hanging shelf - the white shelf part is from IKEA.  The same carpenter then drilled holes in the shelf.  We found a branch we liked, stained it, drilled holes in that too, and attached it with hemp rope.
Baby Lit Books - Baby Lit
Blonde doll and "Jocelyn Rose" needle work - PjulcsY - she is a Hungarian doll maker, and I just love her dolls' sweet faces!
Blanket, flower-shaped swaddle and play mat - Elodie Details
Three "ladies" sitting in rocking chair, and dolls on bookshelf- made by my mom, based off of Tilda doll patterns.
"Have Courage" sign - I painted it.
Little Bird Wreath - Babushka's Boutique
Sheet and changing pad cover - Burt's Bees