Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving

So now we're coming up on our seventh Thanksgiving away from home! We had one in Canada, four in Italy and almost two now, in Scotland. Being away from home on Thanksgiving is the worst but it also creates hysterical stories that we'll always remember from our years abroad. My favorite was from our first year in Italy....

As a disclaimer, I will say that I was not in charge of the turkey! There are no frozen turkeys in Italy and actually, they're quite hard to find in general, at least in Cortina, where we lived. That year, the turkey ended up having to be special ordered from a local butcher. When that was going on, the pounds to kilo ratio got mixed up and a few days later, a 40 pound turkey was delivered to the door. It then had to be taken back to the butcher to be sawed in half so that it could fit in two different ovens for cooking, which took several days.

Lesson learned and in subsequent years, I would end up driving to Austria to buy frozen, normal sized turkeys. Thanksgiving is a little bit easier now that we're in Scotland, but of course, every year there are always fun stories that we'll remember for many years to come. Although, I should mention that I'm in charge of the turkey this year so hopefully no fun stories come of it.... Happy almost Thanksgiving! xo

PS - How to have Thanksgiving in Italy and Ryan's famous green bean casserole.

Friday, November 11, 2016

The Expat Refrigerator

I was writing an article the other day and I mentioned that we had been living abroad for six years now. SIX! I can't believe it. There are a lot of great things about life abroad, but for me, food has always been one of the best. I love cooking (and eating) and I love trying local dishes and poking around the grocery store to see what you can find and what you can't. For fun, the other day I made a list of things that are always in our fridge or pantry now that we live in Scotland, compared to what we always had on hand in Italy, and what we usually keep at home in the US.

What We Have:
Tea. Lots of it.
Cheddar cheese. Again, lots of it. This is something we were missing in Italy and we're still overcompensating.
Curry packs. Curry is huge in the UK and you can buy all sorts of different kinds.
Tunnock's Wafers. You guys. These things are amazing. They're the perfect sweet and they've been around forever. I always see old ladies buying them in the grocery store.
The best salted butter.

What We're Missing:
Really good dill pickles. Can't find them anywhere.

What We Had:
Dried pasta (obviously) in about ten different shapes on any given day.
Stravecchio cheese. My favorite cheese, from the deli counter.
Half empty jars of pesto.

What We Missed:
Cheddar cheese, cumin and canned pumpkin.

What We Have:
Green chilies! We live in Colorado...
A variety of hot sauces. Favorites include Cholula, Sriracha and our local favorite from the Yampa Valley Sauce Company, Habacado.

What We Miss:
That Stravecchio cheese and Tunnock's wafers!

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

The Jacobite Steam Train

My parents have been visiting for the past ten days and while they were here, we planned a little side trip...

Monday, October 10, 2016

Funny Scotland Observations

Have you seen this list of one visitor's observations on Scotland after a trip here? It made me laugh, especially numbers 10 and 14....

Also...8 Things to do in Scotland and we're currently working on a list of our favorite things to do in Fife!

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Easy Salmon

This summer, my cousin gave me Gwyneth Paltrow's new cookbook and all the recipes are so good! We discovered her salmon recipe in the book, which is served with a sauce made from herbs and yogurt. We try not to eat a lot of salmon in the summer because when we come back to Scotland, we know we're getting the best of the best. So lately, now that we're back, we've been eating salmon about once a week and this is one of our favorite, easy recipes.

For two servings, you need two boneless salmon fillets (I buy them with the skin on because I like when the skin gets really crispy during cooking, but if you don't like salmon skin, it's not necessary). Sprinkle them with a little salt and pepper and heat some olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Depending on the thickness of the fish, cook for about 5 minutes per side. If it still looks pink in the middle after the 10 minutes, flip it again and cook a little more. I like to cut up some lemon slices and throw them in the pan as well.

For the sauce, which is loosely based on the one we found in the cookbook, combine 1/2 cup of cilantro, 1/2 cup of parsley, 1/4 cup of plain yogurt, one garlic clove and a pinch of cumin in a blender and blend until smooth.

The whole recipe only takes about 15 minutes to make, so it's perfect for a quick meal. And oddly enough, Everett loves salmon so I always make sure to save him some for lunch the next day.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

How to Fly With a Newborn

Everett was four and a half weeks old when we took him on the airplane for the first time - and it was a long trip - from Scotland back to Colorado for the summer. Prior to flying, I read a lot of blog posts with advice on flying with babies: what to do with them, what to pack for them, how to pop their ears....for the most part, it was helpful but the thing about babies is that they're always changing! I'm putting together my own set of tips for flying with babies, but at different stages. First up: newborns.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016


Mondays are our days for adventuring so yesterday we headed up the coast to Stonehaven. Day trips are slightly different now that Everett is around. We try to leave right around his morning nap time (9 am) and hope that he sleeps the whole way to wherever we're going. He used to be a really good stroller sleeper and would fall asleep anywhere, but now he's way too interested in whatever is going on around him to sleep! We also try to plan our departure from wherever we are around his afternoon nap time....which means that we don't get tons of time anywhere, but it's better than a cranky baby. Here are a few pictures if you'd like to see....