My Photography

Monday, December 30, 2013

Celebrating 4 months of marriage in France

On December 28th here in St. Céré Othman's extended French family had a day-long party to celebrate our marriage. It was the first big reunion in many years for them, and everyone had a really great time! I loved meeting his aunts and uncles and cousins, most of whom I had never seen. Happily I didn't have a problem fitting right in, which was a lovely added bonus! 

Here are some photo highlights of the day:

Othman's mom had mugs made with every great-grandchild's picture on them as a gift for each.

The Berrada-Tratapel family!

Othman's grandparents!

Othman's aunt and her grandson.

Our (very French) third wedding cake! 

Two cuties!

She's daddy's little girl!

Baby Raquel, the youngest great-grandchild.

The cousins had so much fun all together, they were some dance numbers and a mini "The Voice" show, when they scooted their chairs around for each other and all chose teams!

The paper tablecloth was a hit!

A sweet moment with great-uncle.
Louna visited us two years ago in Morocco and it was lovely to meet her more grown up. She slept in the same house as us and we had lots of good conversations, and she fell in love with peanut butter, Rice Crispie Treats and the game SET this week.  She's the same age as Tessie and wants to come with me next time I go to the US, so I told her she's welcome but needs to keep studying English!

Louna's dad has professional DJing equipment and was showing Othman's mom the tricks.
A sweet mother-daughter moment.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

A walk in St. Céré, Christmas afternoon

Photo report part 2-- the afternoon.

Emma drilling me on French vocab-- "C'est LE voiture ou LA voiture?"

The ponies went everywhere!

French signs can be so cute.

St. Céré is a village about 2 hours northeast of Toulouse
in Southern-central France. it has about 3000 inhabitants 
and it's super cute and very old!

They're such cuties!
Alyssa looking like she's up to no good!

There's a castle-- St. Laurent des Tours-- which overlooks the town.

Our wonderful hosts! Jessika, Leny, and the girls.

And the boys...

I was surprised at how nice the town is. Not at all like the 
little midwestern towns I'm used to!


This is the house where Othman's mom grew up. 
Her sister still lives there!
Here's where we are! More towards the northwest you can see Angers, 
where Othman and I met. The last time he came to St. Céré was the
 Christmas before we met (February 2010).

Christmas morning in St. Céré, France

We're in France right now for the holidays, staying with Othman's cousin and her little family and had a lovely Christmas yesterday. Here's a photo report, part 1. (The computer screen broke en route--the colors are all off--so I haven't edited any of the pictures at all, so sorry if some of the pictures are a bit dark, light etc).

Looks like Santa came!
First kiddo up on Christmas!
Waiting patiently for little sister to wake up!
Emma with her new "Emma" book!
And a board book for Alyssa!
Emma showing off her pony-in-a-purse that
Santa brought via my mom in South Dakota!
Jessika with the painting I made for her!
Alyssa with pony version 2.
Playing with their new tea set Santa brought from Morocco!
Beautiful sisters!
Posted by Picasa

Friday, December 20, 2013

GAPS Pumpkin Pie!

Third in my Holiday goodies recipe list: GAPS pumpkin pie! I absolutely LOVE pumpkin pie and had to find a good recipe for this fall staple. In Morocco we can't get canned pumpkin, and don't even have the orange variety-- pumpkins here are green on the outside, much bigger and a bit more watery than what you find in the US. But I've made it work, and this recipe is simple and delicious! 
This is my home pureed pumpkin—I cut lot of raw pumpkin into chunks 
(well actually I get Othman to cut for me!) and boil until soft. 
Then I puree it and freeze it in bags to defrost and use when I want!
-2 eggs
-2 cups pureed pumpkin (fresh or canned)
-1 cup canned coconut milk
-spices desired (I use ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla, but I tend to over-spice because I like that, so I won’t give you quantities. Just use the same spice ratio you’d  use in a normal pumpkin pie)
-1/2 to 3/4 cup of honey (to taste)
-1/2 cup almond flour OR 2-3 tablespoons coconut flour (Note: coconut flour works better for me, and you may need less if you're using canned pumpkin--just add a bit at a time until you get the right texture.)

Beat eggs slightly, then mix in rest of ingredients.  Pour in greased pie pan and bake at a high temperature (425F) for 15 minutes, then lower temperature (350F or so) for 45 more minutes. I’m not sure why that is, but the original recipe I adapted this from had those instructions, and I haven’t deviated so can’t tell you if it’s necessary or not.

It's very thin before you add
the coconut flour.
With a coconut pie crust!

Try not to over-bake— if it’s still a little jiggly in the middle but a toothpick/knife comes out clean at the edge, it’s done. If you over-bake it still tastes good but you’ll get big cracks and the texture isn’t quite as creamy.

If desired, pour batter in a GAPS coconut crust. It’s good like that, but it’s also delicious crustless. Make one of each if you can’t decide. ;D

I did overbake these ones, and they got big cracks in the middle, so I'm refraining from putting those ugly pictures on here! But even so, they were delicious!!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

GAPS coconut pie crust

Recipes for the holidays number two: coconut pie crust!

This crust is great for no-bake pies, but can be baked with a pie (for example pumpkin) in it. Just be aware that any edge left over the top will be burnt to a crisp, but the rest will be fine!!

-2 eggs, separated
-1 ½ to 2 cups unsweetened coconut flakes
-2-4 tablespoons honey (to taste)
-2 teaspoons vanilla extract
-1/2 teaspoon salt

Put egg whites in a medium bowl, add the rest of the ingredients. (I just add the yolks to whatever pie I'm making--can't hurt!) Mix with your hands. Add some coconut if you think it's too wet. It should be easy to mold with your hands but it won't stick together.

Press everything into the bottom of a well-greased pie plate, trying to make it as even as possible. Bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes. I just keep an eye on it until it's nice and golden.

Ready to go!

Posted by Picasa