Summertime Has Arrived

by April on June 12, 2016

The mercury is up there and people are posting photos of their wildly inaccurate in-vehicle thermometers like we don’t know it’s toasty outside. For the record, some people are posting that its 109F and no, they are wrong.

famously hot columbia

Though I love the warm weather, I’ve been staying in for the most part this weekend, mostly because that’s where the things I wanted to do were occurring. It’s been a relaxing two days, with little in the way of obligations, leaving plenty of time for hanging out – exactly what I wanted.

Radar on her Coolaroo dog hammock

 

Radar got a Coolaroo dog hammock on Friday afternoon. She approves. 

Friday night we stayed in and colored with these print out sheets that Patrick found online. Our personalities seem to be pretty accurately reflected in our coloring styles. He’s meticulous about every little bit, while I would take and cross the lines to color larger chunks the same color.

coloring for relaxation

coloring for relaxation

After going to bed early that night, chilled out on coloring, I woke up pretty early the next morning (okay, like 9 a.m.) and decided to head out to the State Farmer’s Market for some produce. It was nice to see a lot of the same vendors in the same spots as they were last autumn when I had last been.

vegetables from the south carolina state farmers market

Aren’t those eggplants gorgeous? They also had white ones as well, but I wanted to go with the purple this go round. After dropping off my goods, I went to the grocery store to get the rest of the things I couldn’t get at the market, and also to use up a bunch of coupons that were expiring that day. They rearranged the freaking Bi-Lo near me so I am still wandering up and down every aisle trying to reorient myself with how the store is set up, and stopped to look at this extensive selection of South Carolina made barbecue sauces. And that’s just some of the ones available!

south carolina barbecue sauces bi lo

With all of that food secured, it was time to actually make something to eat. I had some cottage cheese left over from another recipe earlier in the week (what it was for, I can’t even remember now… oh wait, it was a light mac and cheese that was just okay) and needed to use it up. Conveniently, this ranch quick bread recipe popped up from The Kitchn. It really is a quick and easy to make bread. Probably the hardest part is measuring out all of the herbs and spices. It’s not as ranch-y as I would have hoped, but still pretty nice. I haven’t figured out any way to eat it except lightly buttered, by the slice. If you can’t tell, I am not a big bread eater and can pass on a bread basket at a restaurant most of the time.

ranch quick bread the kitchn

We stayed in the rest of the night, grilling corn and hanging out with Cecil who came over to play our outdoor organ. Originally I was going to go to Craft & Draft for Bierkeller’s Braunbier release party but… inertia overcame me too easily.

Sunday morning was a slow start but once the hunger overcame me I decided that we needed to use the waffle iron I wanted so badly for an anniversary present. This churro waffle recipe looked easy and delicious, which it was. It was amazing. I wouldn’t change a thing except to make less cinnamon sugar.

churro waffles

I then ran out to do a few errands, pick up some craft supplies for an upcoming Good Life Blog post, and stopped by Trader Joe’s to return something. Did you know that you can return any Trader Joe’s product, even without a receipt if you don’t like it? So if anyone ever offers you a TJ’s product… take it. You can totally get credit towards something else you’d rather have!

And finally, I’m rounding out the day with an experiment I’ll discuss more later this week. Let’s just say that it involves two of the best things ever, beer and potatoes. Did anyone else have an enjoyable if not fun hot weekend?

beer soaked sweet potatoes

 

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Dairy Free Coconut Ice Cream

by April on June 7, 2016

While in DC last month, we went to a tapas place in Georgetown called Bodega and stuffed ourselves silly with so many types of Spanish dishes. But I still had to end the night with a little sweet in the form of a coconut sorbet that was pure and rich and amazing. It’s the kind of dessert you think about days later.

Once back home, I was wandering around the newly rearranged grocery store near me (I can’t stand ittttttt, change sucks even though the layout is better fine, I’ll get used to it) and was looking at the different canned coconut products. There’s coconut water, coconut milk, cream of coconut… the list seems endless. But it’s good to know about all of these because you gonna need one of each to make this amazing ice cream. You will also need an ice cream maker. I am partial to my Cuisinart, but you could also use a KitchenAid attachment or whatever other brand you may have.

coconut milk coconut water cream of coconut

Dairy Free Coconut Ice Cream

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of coconut water
  • 1 13.5 ounce can of coconut milk (not light)
  • 1 13.5 ounce can of cream of coconut (often found in the mixers section by the Bloody Mary mix)

Directions

  1. Make sure your ice cream vessel is appropriately frozen, per manufacturer’s directions.
  2. Chill both the coconut water and milk for several hours or overnight, but NOT the cream of coconut. It will harden into a freaking rock.
  3. Pour all of the ingredients into a stand mixer, or use a handheld electric one to thoroughly combine the coconut products for about two to three minutes. This infuses the mixture with some air as well for fluffiness in the final product.
  4. Pour the mixture into the ice cream maker and let it churn until it’s the texture of ice cream.
  5. Empty the ice cream into a plastic container with a lid and let ripen in the freezer for several hours or overnight.
  6. Scoop and enjoy! Add coconut shavings for fun, if desired.

dairy free coconut ice cream

 

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Palmetto Pinball Club — An Underground Aboveground Gaming Experience

June 1, 2016

To prep yourself to read this post, go ahead and click on this YouTube link and get the song going before proceeding. We’re getting some pretty cool things happening in Columbia, including a semi-secret pinball club. Patrick and I had an impromptu date night Friday that started at The Whig for some drinks and bites […]

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How Do You Know When You’re Adulting?

May 30, 2016

I recently turned 31, and cliched though it may seem, I still feel like I am either college age or close to it, not eight years past commencement. But then there are other times when I really like I am #adulting so hard, like this past week when I went to open my very own […]

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Saffron: Authentic Indian Restaurant with Mexican and Chinese Options

May 26, 2016

Yes, it’s a real thing. It’s the whole name of this new restaurant located in a non-descript building that also houses a tire store on 378 in West Columbia. I saw the sign from the road the other day and within the week dragged Patrick there with me, all because of the hilariously long name. […]

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Washington DC Girls Trip

May 24, 2016

In those ugh months of winter I saw an ad online where JetBlue was trying to entice people to click through with promises of $44 airfare. Feeling the urge for some sort of break, they lured me right in where I began perusing the places I could go for a fairly inexpensive airfare when CHS […]

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Purple Pea Hummus

May 23, 2016

It’s not often that you’re perusing the bulk bin section of the grocery store and come up surprised by legumes, unless the handle sticks, but I recently was in just such a situation where I found something from a familiar-to-me part of the state. These dried purple hull peas hail from Heritage Farms in Norway, […]

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Kindle vs. Book

May 11, 2016

For a long time I resisted e-readers and felt somewhat smug in my decision to do so. In 2013 I did use my husband’s Kindle to devour all seven Harry Potter books over several weeks prior to a trip to Orlando that of course included Harry Potter World. The ease of transitioning from one book […]

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South Carolina Brewers Guild Festival To Be Held in Cayce

May 10, 2016

I previously reported on the South Carolina Brewers Guild Festival in the Free Times, but I wanted to repost the article here as well so that more people may see the information. The South Carolina Brewers Guild — originally organized in 2005 by Jaime Tenny of COAST Brewing and more recently structured with an executive […]

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Insta Lately

April 15, 2016

Like every good millennial, I take most of my photos on my iPhone (6). I used to haul my Canon Rebel around everywhere, but for one, it’s chunky and for two, it’s incredibly old and the standard lens on it is scratched from years of abuse. When I upgraded my iPhone last year, I got […]

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