Another February Snow Day?!

I know, I know.....It's been far too long since I updated!  Having daycare cancelled and my internship agency closed Wednesday made me do all sorts of past activities.  I wish I was more organized to do it all even with my new obligations, but it takes all my extra time just to make sure I get dinner on the table after a day at work.  You would think that after a couple months that I would have it down?  Nope...just taking it day to day still and doing the best I can to keep the family (and myself!) happy.

This all started because I haven't been very good about preparing meals for the family in quite a while.  I've made my lentil soup, an indian cuisine, and spaghetti sauce, but then I freeze items and we munch on it for a while OR just order out.  Can't forget breakfast for dinner....

Sol has moved away from baby food and is much more interested in whatever we are eating.  That makes things tough for me because I love SPICE!  I haven't been very good about toning our recipes down for him and that makes it harder for me when I'm trying to put all of our dinners on the table at the same time.

I did a bit of research and found a turkey quinoa meatloaf recipe that looked interesting.  After reading reviews and suggestions, I made a few tweaks and wah-lah.  Here's the recipe:

Turkey Quinoa Meatloaf
1/4 c quinoa
1/2 c water
1 tsp olive oil
1 small onion, chopped (I used half a yellow onion)
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 lb (20 oz) of ground turkey
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 tbsp hot sauce (I almost held back for S, but I couldn't resist!!)
2 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsps salt
1 tsp pepper (in the end, this was too much.  I would cut it back to 1/4 or 1/2 tsp pepper)

2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tsps Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp water

First, you'll need a cute little helper....

Boil quinoa and water on stove top until the water is absorbed.  Set aside to cool.

Chop onions and garlic.  Make sure helper goes down for a nap, especially if it's that time of day.  If you want to make sure everything is done right, having a little helper tugging at your pants and crying probably isn't going to really help.

Saute onions with olive oil for 5 minutes.  Add chopped garlic for 1 minute.  Remove from stovetop and let it cool.

If you are cooking right away, set the oven at 350 degrees.  I'm getting this together so that I can put it in the oven this evening, so I'll hold off on preheating the oven.  Put the turkey, tomato paste, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, eggs, salt, and pepper in a large bowl and mix well.

Shape the mixture into a loaf on a foil lined pyrex.

Mix brown sugar, 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce, 1 tsp water.  Rub the paste on the top of the loaf.

I was so excited to see visitors in the woods behind our house...but it made me worry a bit about the cold weather headed this way.  We have 6 young deer that have been living in the neighborhood.  I haven't seen them in a while, but they look like they're growing well and sticking together.  Have I mentioned that one of the reasons I love where I live is all the nature we have around us??

If you're ready to cook your meatloaf, cook it at 350 degrees until the center is no longer pink, approximately 50 minutes.  If you're like me and you've prepped it ahead of time, make sure to cover it with plastic wrap and put it in the fridge until you're ready to cook it.  

David was wonderful and helped get the meatloaf into the oven so I could complete my treadmill run.  We also prepared asparagus and hash browns to go with the meal.

All in all, I will make it again.  As I mentioned in the recipe details, I put too much pepper in it and that's the only item I have to complain about.  While Sol hasn't been begging for seconds, he has eaten it and I blame teething for his decreased appetite.  We've enjoyed two meals from the loaf and have enough for another meal!

This is an unusual recipe for a meatloaf, would you branch out and try it??

Family Update

Farewell 2014, hello 2015!!  After welcoming our sweet Sol in February, we’ve realized how quickly time flies.  It’s been an exciting 11 months, and we’re all looking forward to celebrating Sol’s 1st birthday on February 15, 2015.  Our lives have changed immensely!  Whenever we have time, you’ll find us all together in Sol’s playroom or bedroom.  He started using his walker in November and every now and again he gets an itch to  pridefully march through the house.  His favorite toys are balls and board books.  One of his favorite activities is opening and closing doors…until he realizes that he can’t open them again!  He’s figuring out some of the toys that require thought, like his ball chute.  It’s so neat watching him learn!

Thanks to the Southwest Companion Pass and Sol flying for free, we didn’t slow down with traveling.  Sol’s quite the flyer!!  Caleigh and Sol accompanied David in June to a conference in Orlando, where they had a chance to see Nana and Lito and visit Disney’s downtown.  At 6-months, we took Sol to Puerto Rico for some much needed family time.  In October, David took Caleigh and Sol for their first visit to Plantation,  FL, where Nana and Lito live.  In December, the family traveled to Bethesda, MD to visit friends and then to Fredonia, NY to spend the holidays with the Orloff’s, Ryan’s, and Nana and Lito Alevy.  This family is not slowing down!
We made a couple of trips to Destin, FL as well.  We visited over the summer with Pat Pat, Bubbe, Lito, and Nana.  Sol loved the attention!  We returned for the Thanksgiving holiday with the Rathmell family.  Sol loved going out and playing in the sand. 

David celebrated 15 years at Infinity in August and he’s 1 semester away from finishing the IEM program at UAB.  With his love of learning and passion in rental investments, he’s already talking about taking a local real estate course.  He has ambitions of expanding his slum empire! 
Caleigh has completed 23 hours in her graduate program and has taken an internship with Children’s Aid Society this semester.  She has been able to keep a few massage clients around her school schedule and Sol’s daycare/napping schedule.  She still has around 37 hours to complete her Masters in Social Work, but she is determined to finish!  It’s very doable, especially since UA offers the program online.  

Azaria continues to be a great companion for our Alevy family.  We have trained her to behave like other grown up puppies and are very proud of her accomplishments.  She loves her Sol and he loves crawling on her.  As David loves to tell everyone, she uses kisses as her defense mechanism.  Unfortunately, Sol LOVES her kisses!  They’re great playmates and we love seeing their bond grow.

2014 was an exciting and adventurous year for all of us and we can’t wait to see what 2015 has in store…starting with a baby brother or sister for Sol in July!!  
Much love to all, David, Caleigh, Sol, and Azaria Alevy