House stuff

Winter is Coming

It’s starting to feel like winter! It’s been 32 degrees in the morning with lots of ice on cars. It’s time to bring out the winter coats. Stevie has found his favorite spot in the new house:

…on the heater!

There’s also a small vent near the floor under the kitchen sink and he’ll sit right in front of that, too. Which is super convenient for us when we are trying to do dishes. 😉

I’m not sure if I mentioned it, but because our house is a little weird, we had to do a special situation for AC and heat. The first half of the house is the original 1920’s with vents like the above picture. So the main floor was “AC ready” but because the upstairs was a converted attic, there were no ducts up there. So when we got AC installed in our house this summer we had to do it in two parts. We got traditional AC for the main floor, then we had to get those Mitsubishi ductless units for our bedroom and for Logan’s bedroom.

Because it’s been so cold lately we finally got to use the heat portion of the ductless units and they are AMAZING! So quiet. Super efficient. It doesn’t take much to warm up the room and you can set it up to maintain a certain temperature (instead of just having it run all the time). It will be interesting to see HOW efficient they are on energy. Since we have solar panels on our new house, I am hoping the combination of the panels and the ductless units will save us a ton of money on heating and cooling in the house. Even though we have to spend a lot of money to do two separate systems.

Anyways, this weekend we had the Halloween Party and then Sunday was kind of a chill morning, hanging out with my parents and Logan was playing with his Halloween toys:

After my parents left to head home to Seattle, I went swimming, had a late lunch and then prepped dinner. I decided to make this keto beef stroganoff.

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 cups beef stock
  • 10 ounces cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 ½ pounds sirloin steak, thinly sliced (I get my grass-fed meat here)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons beef bouillon
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 ½ teaspoons onion powder (I use this brand of seasonings)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Heat the slow cooker on the high setting. To the slow cooker, add the beef stock and mushrooms and cover.
  2. Heat the butter in a large sautĂŠ pan, over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic to the pan and sautĂŠ until the onion is translucent and the garlic is fragrant. Add them to the slow cooker.
  3. Sprinkle the sirloin with salt, add it to the pan and sear on both sides, about 2 minutes.
  4. Add the steak, heavy cream, sour cream, beef bouillon, Dijon, parsley, onion powder, garlic powder, and oregano to the slow cooker. Cover and cook on high for 6 hours.

It was pretty easy to make and I love having a crockpot meal! So easy. The only change I did was I added the heavy cream and sour cream one hour before it was going to be done. I didn’t thinking putting it in the crockpot for the whole time would be good–it might curdle or something.

I also used fresh garlic from a friend’s garden! It was so good!

Dinner was really flavorful! I liked it a lot. The sauce was a little thin. Then I realized that it was a SOUP! Duh. I might use less broth next time I make it, though.

I wasn’t sure what to use as a base — I had cauliflower “Rice”, low carb noodles, zoodles, and in the end we used a chickpea pasta rotini instead. Not low carb, but it was really tasty.

Right now I’m not really doing keto. I’m doing more of a low carb/carb cycling program. I saw the above graphic on instagram and I liked the diet suggestion. I might do something like what it suggests, where I do a month of keto, month of low carb, month of something else. Maybe Mediterranean Diet, maybe Paleo or Slow Carb. I just feel like my body adjusts to whatever diet I try REALLY FAST and then it stops working. So maybe doing something like this will be better to switch things up.

Housewarming

We finally had our housewarming party this weekend! It was nice to be able to celebrate our new place, and fully enjoy it after our old house sold last month.

Friday night some friends came down to visit from Seattle and it was nice to see them and catch up. And it’s great that we have space and an official guest room for people! They brought their two boys, 11 and 6 years old, and Logan was LOVING having playmates! Especially boys to wrestle and chase. 😉

Saturday Michael smoked a brisket all day long. He got up early to do it. I got up early to go to the gym and then prep for the party and hang out with our friends a bit.

There was a ton of food and people brought some really great stuff. Homemade cornbread, salads, collard greens. Lots of treats! So so so much food. And tons of people too! It was cool that our house was full of people (and less cramped like our last place).


People were so sweet, too. Lots of cards and flowers and plants. Our front porch is now full of fall mums that I need to plant. 🙂 The flowers are just gorgeous! Someone even brought us an oak tree!

One friend even brought us fancy meat as a housewarming gift! Waygu flat iron, filet mignon and rib eye! What a cool idea for a gift!

There were tons of kids running around the house all day playing, playing chase and hide and seek and dress up. It was so cool to have tons of kids in the house, happy and playing.

The party went off almost without a hitch. Of course just as the party started there was a downpour, complete with thunder and lightning! I had been hoping people would be able to go in the backyard, too. But that didn’t happen. And due to the weather, the Traeger shut off and delayed the brisket a little. But despite those minor things, we had a great time.

We got to see old friends and new friends and some new neighbors even came by. And our old neighbors came by to see the new place. It was nice to catch up with them.

It was a great weekend. Sunday was much-needed low-key downtime. I went swimming and cleaned the house and did mountains of laundry but other than that, not much! Lots of napping. 😀

Happy Monday!