Sunday, November 23, 2014

Zion National Park

"There are no words that can tell the hidden spirit of the wilderness, that can reveal its mystery, its melancholy and its charm" 

                                                                                -T. Roosevelt

We're enjoying a few days exploring Zion National Park in Southern Utah. There's something about the impartial, colossal red white and cream-swirled cliffs that allow you to just be, to stop worrying. Look at the weathered sandstone, and time stares back at you - millions of years all at once. It's hard to get caught up in the day to day when we're reminded of how small we are in this beautiful place.  It's as if somehow, your mind wanders, expands and fills up the vastness, freeing you from individuality. You cease to be you, you just are, and it's profoundly refreshing. 

Home is a quiet ranch with a resident herd of buffalo, adding to the sense of calm and serenity.  I just wanted to share a bit of the beauty and peace, in hopes that you enjoy it as much as we do.

Returning from the hike to Angel's Landing -  across the narrow cliff ledge in the middle

Our home for a few days:

Thanks for reading. Wishing you a happy Thanksgiving!


Friday, November 14, 2014

Roasted Acorn Squash + Rosemary & Thyme Scented Beef

This recipe is inspired by all the little squirrels outside, with their frenzied collecting of acorns in preparation for winter.  Every time we're out for a walk, you can't miss them, jumping around like they're on some amphetamine-fueled scavenger hunt for nuts. I reluctantly admit that this time of year is ok, but come on, do we really need to get rid of Daylight Savings Time? Isn't this the time we need daylight most?!

In keeping with fall, I've been roasting a lot of apples, squash and pumpkin. There's something warming and satisfying about bringing the outdoors inside; the leaves are a hundred shades of candy-red, orange, and rich brown, mirroring bright red apples, orange squash, and let's not forget - the omnipresent pumpkin pie. Last week, I couldn't resist buying two beautiful dark green acorn squashes with their irreverent stripes of orange, and on a whim, decided to combine them with herb scented beef.  The herbs prompted singing of "parsley sage, rosemary and thyme" on repeat by my husband (Scarborough Fair, I later realized). Also, when presented with the above meal, he instantly homogenized it, smashing the beef into the squash, until it became a squash/beef mash.  It's one of his lovable quirks, the homogenizing. 

 This is a very easy recipe, and you can prepare the squash and beef separately, if you're short on time (I prepped them in two stages). This hearty squash supper is great for a cold fall evening. Hope you'll enjoy this! 

Roasted Acorn Squash + Rosemary & Thyme Scented Beef


2 acorn squashes, halved

olive oil 

brown sugar



1 lb lean ground beef 

1/2 large onion, chopped

1 tbsp minced garlic

Worcestershire sauce

Rosemary & Thyme 


1. Preheat oven to 400F

2. Halve acorn squashes. Scoop out seeds and brush with olive oil. Dust lightly with brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg

3. Bake for ~40 minutes or until squash is fork tender. Remove from oven and set aside

4. In a medium sized pan, heat a a few tablespoons of olive oil over low-medium heat, with garlic. Once garlic is fragrant, add onions, beef, herbs (liberally), and a dash of Worcestershire sauce. Cook until beef is cooked through

5. Ladle beef into squash halves and serve immediately

What are your favorite fall foods?

Thanks for reading!