Tag Archives: leaves

Getaway DC

This year has been full on. Summer slipped by in the blink of an eye. And since Lucas started nursery downtown, we’ve hardly had a moment free. We needed to press pause.

So we booked ourselves a little cabin down in the Shenandoah Valley, and took off for a much-needed getaway.

Sans child. Sans wi-fi. And after a few glasses of wine, sans a care in the world.

SN IG

Trees Forest Trail

SN IG3

SN IG2

Leaves

getaway view

Our cabin for the evening was tucked into the most gorgeous woodland setting, where you couldn’t hear a car horn or siren for miles. The only sounds were just the lone crow, squirrels scampering across the crunchy leaves, and the swoosh of an occasional breeze across the treetops.

We settled into our cabin and lit our campfire.

getaway cabin IGGGGGG

getaway cabin ig bed

getaway cabin side

getaway cabin hat rack

getaway cabin phone

getaway cabin

getaway fire eddie

One thing we didn’t need a break from was a good meal. But unlike our usual dinners at home (which usually involve lots of prep, tons of stress to get it on the table in time, and then a forensic amount of clean up after), this time we did things differently.

getaway cabin beef bourg basket

getaway cabin beef bourg basket3

A one-pot meal we could throw in a dutch oven and kick back by the fire while it stewed for a couple of hours.

getaway cabin table

And like any recipe that calls for a whole bottle of wine – you know it’s going to be good!

 

getaway beef bourg

getaway beef bourg vlose

Beef Bourguignon over potato gnocchi

It definitely took a while, but when you’ve got nothing else to do but sit and talk, and sip wine and look at the moon rise, you don’t really notice! Well worth the wait, we ate late and stayed up much later.

The next morning, we slept in. I know a lot of parents probably complain about a lack of sleep, which I never really understood. I have always been such a high energy person, I never missed the hours of lost sleep when I had a baby.

getaway cabin bed IG

But being here, I now realise how a nice, long lie-in is such a luxury for mums and dads. You don’t have to get up. That’s when it feels so good to be lazy.

getaway view high

getaway socks

Walking

Breakfast was another easy skillet on the grill. My campsite take on huevos rancheros, we felt like a couple of cowboys as we sipped our mugs of coffee waiting for the chow bell.

getaway breakfast

getaway breakfast table

Breakfast Camping Picnic Autumn

breakfast

breakfast remnants

With the last bits of breakfast mopped up, there was nothing to do but snuggle up and just chill until checkout time.

reading IGGGGG

 

 

 

 

 

Halloween Pumpkin & Hot Apple Cider

Ooh, the air is brisk and the clocks have gone back! The leaves don’t change color in London, (they just turn brown and die) but they’re starting to fall! And tomorrow is Halloween!

I’m missing my east coast autumn for sure, but trying to get in the spirit of the season. So I rummaged through my pantry for some hot apple cider supplies, and got ready to carve my pumpkin!

Hot Mulled Cider Ingredients

Hot Mulled Cider Ingredients Close

I spiced my cider by putting all the ingredients in a saucepan over simmering heat.

Hot Mulled Cider Step 1 Pan

Hot Mulled Cider Step 2 Orange

Squeezed in the juice of a clementine and a splash of dark rum.

Hot Mulled Cider Step 3 Rum

While my brew heated up, I settled down to design my jack-o’-lantern, drawing on its features with a Sharpie.

Pumpkin Draw

Pumpkin Draw Eyes

Next, is my favorite part – cutting out the lid around the stem, then scooping out all the pulp and seeds.

Pumpkin Step 2 Cut Top

Pumpkin Step 3 remove Seeds

Pumpkin Step 3 Remove Seeds Handful

With my mug of hot spiced cider (a perfect hand-warmer!) close by, I used a thin flexible fillet knife to carefully saw out the eyes and mouth of the pumpkin.

Pumpkin Step 4 Cider

Pumpkin Step 6 Done

Isn’t he cute??

Pumpkin Step 5 Done

Don’t let all those pumpkin seeds go to waste! Rinse them clean and place them on a parchment covered baking sheet to roast in the oven. This time, I sprinkled them with Old Bay, popped them in and left to bake for 20 minutes.

Seeds Tray

Seeds Old Bay

Seeds Old Bay Sprinkled

They came out perfectly toasted, with that familiar Maryland flavor filling the kitchen!

Seeds Into Bowl

Seeds in Bowl

These Old Bay roasted pumpkin seeds make the perfect crunchy snack, sure to be gone long before the trick-or-treaters come knocking.

Happy Halloween, everyone!

Apple Cider Recipe