There Are Some Things You Just Have To Do Yourself

There are some things you just have to do yourself.  You know, like when the cheapest hardscaping bid comes in three times over budget.  It’s in that moment that you and your husband look at each other,  shrug, and say, “Well, I guess we’re gonna do this.”  This is my apology and excuse for the blog-neglect.  We have been spending the last two weeks turning our backyard from a sandpit into a hardscaped wonder.  {See exhibits A and B, C, D}

20151029_112946 20151109_171314 20151113_173925 20151116_101440I’ve pretty much neglected everything.  {Except the dishes.  And throwing fruit snacks at my kids.  I have standards.}  We aren’t done yet…but we are thinking maybe one more weekend of hitting it hard.  And then we can go back to our normal routine.  {And I will cook again, instead of pulling frozen leftovers from the deep corners of the freezer.}

So back to other things you should do yourself…

I can count on one hand the number of times my mom bought pizza growing up.  Or bought any “store-bought” foodstuff, for that matter.  I remember once begging for chicken nuggets from a fast food place, and she went ahead and made her own batter-covered chicken breast chunks and fried them up for us for dinner.  “Store-bought” cookies and 2% milk were a treat only at a friend’s house–“Cookies?!  We can make those at home!”  My mom would always announce, walking us straight past the cookie aisle in the grocery store, and over to the 10 cent fruit roll-ups we were allowed as our treat.  And as far as milk was concerned, “Whisking milk” was on the monthly chore list…we grew up making and drinking the more cost-effective powder milk.

Is it any surprise that I have culinarily turned into my mom.  {Is it any daughter’s surprise, really?!}  Today, I would only go near a fast food place by necessity–and by necessity, I mean we’ve been hardscaping for hours on end and my boys are melting down; when my boys ask to buy a treat at the store, I turn my nose up and say, “Nah…we can make that at home!”  One difference is we drink almond milk, not powdered milk.

And pizza?  Pizza is best homemade.  Unless you are in Italy, of course.  Then always go out.  If you’re staying in, do my mom’s favorite toppings–she calls it Cupboard Pizza.  Unload whatever leftovers or cupboard surprises you have, throw on some cheese, and you’ve got a good dinner.  I don’t think I’m even going to post a recipe here, to be honest.  Use your fav pizza dough recipe, and fav red sauce, and top with your cupboard surprises…{I’ll post my fav pizza dough and red sauce recipes as other posts later.}

My leftovers?  Why, pumpkin, of course.  I had some leftover roasted pumpkin from pasta, and some leftover maple-roasted pumpkin from the salad.  I love these colors–very deep and autumn-ish.

pumpkin pizza 1

Before the bake

pumpkin pizza 2

After the bake

pumpkin pizza 4