Yummy things

Yummy things
Random musings on happenings in my kitchen and my life, in Durham, NC

About me
Hi! I'm Lindsey.

I'm a health educator, like to run at a slow, but steady pace, teach group fitness classes, and do my best to keep up with my family that's spread across the country. In the midst all of that, playing in the kitchen is one of my favorite stress relievers and creative outlets, so this blog chronicles some of my favorite cooking and baking adventures, but in the process it also tells the story of the rest of my life.

Like many people in the Triangle area, I'm a transplant. After spending the first 21 years of my life in the midwest, I've been settled in North Carolina for seven years. One of the things I love most about the area is the diversity of local farms, farmers' markets, and great food, so I follow lots of local food happenings, but I also keep up with my fair share of Midwestern favorites.

If you like what you find here, feel free to drop me a note and email Yummy things. I'd love to hear from all of you out there!
Sun Apr 6

March (travel) madness!

I’ve been quiet on here, because I’ve been running around the country  recently.  Although it’s an official goal on workplan to limit my travel to once a quarter, I managed to end up with three trips to three different states in the span of ten days - Columbia, SC, Asheville, NC and Denver, CO. It was a little crazy, both because I’m not used to so much travel, and because I had lots of work to do related to each trip, so I was up late each night in the hotel.

The view from the Denver airport - a wee bit different than what you see at RDU! 

A Denver sunrise from my hotel room, which I got to see, since my body didn’t really get the 2 hour time difference. 

Then just two weeks later, I had a one day loop to Rock Hill, SC, and back, and then this weekend, one more trip - but this time for fun - my sister’s bridal shower! 

The bride-to-be opening presents!

Cousins!  Grace did an awesome job showing Ada and Addy where all the toys were.  :-)

Some observations from along the way:

- This much travel is exhausting, especially when you’re trying to keep up with pumping while away and packing lunches when you’re home. I’ll actually give Gwenyth Paltrow this one; life is a lot easier when I’m in the office 9 AM - 5 PM.  There are about a thousand other reasons that her argument that her life is harder than the “average” working mom’s is crap, but she’s right, long travel days are tough. 

- Despite multiple attempts to do so, I cannot actually manage to run 3 miles on a hotel treadmill and get cleaned up enough to meet with colleagues in under an hour.  All my training for the upcoming Tar Heel 10 Miler got me over confident; the couple minutes I’ve managed to skim off my 5k time is not enough to get all my hair dried and dissipate that red glow that I acquire while running.

- My body much prefers sea level to being a mile in the sky.  Especially when there was a professional cocktail hour that I was invited to participate in just two hours after arriving in Denver, and then I stubbornly tried to keep my training going on the treadmill.  Next time I jet set to Colorado, I’ll have to stay long enough to get acclimated. 

- Asheville, Columbia, and Denver all have some seriously good food to offer, and it was nice to be able to enjoy it without kids’ bedtime routines cutting meals short.  If they’re in your neck of the woods, I’d give good reviews to Mela, Motor Supply Bistro Co. and The Kitchen all three. 

- Also, there is some excellent public health work happening in all three places.  My colleagues at the South Carolina Hospital Association continue to kick butt with their work to improve employee health across the state.  I greatly enjoyed seeing what Asheville and Buncombe County Schools are doing to help kids learn healthy.  And although Colorado is already doing some awesome stuff to keep their citizens healthy, it was fun to see some new projects begin to emerge and help make the future even healthier for kids there. 

- It is a heck of a lot easier to travel without kids.  But it’s actually a nice confidence builder to just travel with one, after you’ve recalibrated to two.  You realize that things really are easier the second time around, when you don’t have to keep up with them both!  Dan and I took the divide and conquer strategy for the shower weekend, with Hazel staying home, and even though Ada was far from perfect, I actually found myself from thinking, “hey, this isn’t bad; maybe I should have brought Hazel along.” 

- There’s nothing quite like home, both the grand, old fashioned, big family version, and the cozy, messy, Durham version. 

Mon Feb 17

The real deal

Boy, did I call that wrong.  The last time I posted, I was musing about whether our winter weather might be over.  Then, last weekend, the meteorologists starting talking about a real winter storm coming our way.  After having experienced them calling “wolf” before, it was easy to question whether we were going to see anything at all when the doppler seemed to indicate that there was a force field around the Triangle area on Wednesday morning. 

But I tried to play it safe, leaving work at lunch time, then swinging by the grocery to ensure we had food for the next couple meals, in case we were snowed in, or worse, lost power.  When it was still clear at that point, I decided to fit in a quick run on the treadmill at the club less than a mile from our house.  And then, it started to snow, and it came hard and fast.  In the time it took me to run three miles, more snow hit the ground than Mother Nature has delivered over the last year. When I went to turn out of the club, there were already about a dozen cars off the road on the hill that stood between me and home.  I decided that even though it was definitely wet and slippery, I felt comfortable driving in the snow and decided to take the long way home.  An hour and a half later(!), I finally made it home.  I’ve never seen anything like it. 

Even though I wanted to deny it, I knew that some serious winter weather was coming our way.  I knew it would have a major impact on life, seeing how we don’t have much ability to clear the snow once it’s on the ground.  But I never expected that it would fall so fast that even small hills would make travel impossible, as cars slid off the road, people got stuck - spinning their wheels after trying to work against gravity after coming to a dead stop, and then ultimately, many abandoned their cars when they lost confidence in their ability to safely and efficiency proceed.  Over my 2.5 mile loop around, I probably saw 50 people on foot! 

'Oh my gosh!' Raleigh woman's snow photo goes viral

This photo of Glenwood Ave. in Raleigh, has made it’s way around the internet.  Minus the fire, the roads I traveled looked remarkably similar. 

Needless to say, once I finally got home, I wasn’t going anywhere until the white stuff stopped falling. Ultimately, we got over 6 inches of snow, with some ice on top.  That’s more than we’ve accumulated here in 5 years! 

Even if it was totally the wrong call to spend my last hour of clear roads marking the grocery and the treadmill off my list, I was thankful to have some really delicious meals while we were snowed in.

It was a good chance to make this classic Cincinnati chili - the closest I’ve been able to find to Skyline.

And we discovered a new favorite way to braise pork - I did this on the stove, but I think this is exactly the reason people love their crock pots.  Dump the pork into the marinade the night before, throw everything into the slow cooker in the morning, and enjoy a delicious, sweet, salty pile of meat at the end of the day. 

And although it was stressful to try to get in full days’ worth of work while also watching Hazel and Ada, they were pretty cute when we finally got them out in the snow! 

Luckily, since Friday afternoon, temps have stayed above freezing, so except where snow was plowed into a pile or the ground is very shaded, almost everything is gone.  And now, on Wednesday, highs are expected to be in the seventies!  Perhaps we really are done with winter now?  Is there some winter equivalent to “in like a lion, out for a lamb?”  I think it’s time for a classic Carolina spring!