I’m glad to be awake during the daytime again, though I wish my kids didn’t herald in the new day at 7 am. By barging into our room and tooting plastic recorders in my face. As loudly as possible.

After I shooed the boys and their instruments out of our room, I trudged over to the kitchenette in our hotel room to make breakfast and pack the kiddos’ lunches for camp.

For my first meal of the day, I whipped up a plain omelet and topped it with leftover greens and sliced avocado.

How many times have you cut into a soft avocado only to find a swampy-brown and moldy interior?

Years ago, my chef-sis taught me to flick off the nub at the stem end of a soft avocado to peek at the flesh and make sure it wasn’t brown and rotten inside. (Read all about this great tip over at theKitchn.)

Works every time.

When I’m in a bind and need to buy a ripe avocado at the store, I leave a bunch of stemless avocados in my wake. That’s how I roll.

After dropping the Double-Os off at camp, I had a whopping FOUR AND A HALF HOURS all to myself. In between running errands and washing massive loads of laundry, I managed to  squeeze in a leisurely lunch with my buddy R. at Steak Out.

This time, I ordered a watermelon, arugula, and feta salad with a grilled grass fed beef patty on the side.

Eating a salad makes me feel like a hoity-toity Lady Who Lunches, but I’m okay with that.

When camp was over, the boys and I headed back home to check on the progress of our floor repair. I’m happy to report, it’s lookin’ good. Phew. (And it’s *only* taken two-and-a-half months!)

While at home, we picked up our mail and packages, too. Wanna see what the postman dropped off that made me squeal with joy?

My award for being named the Best Special Diets Blog in SAVEUR’s 2012 Best Food Blog Awards: AN ENGRAVED CLEAVER!

I have to say, it’s a pretty appropriate choice for a meat-eating gal. Have you seen my Beef Addition t-shirts? I can’t decide whether to hang this up on my wall or use it to butcher meat.

In all seriousness, thank you all so much for your votes and support! Mwah!

The rest of the afternoon was a flurry of activities, but I didn’t care because I had a hand-written note of congratulations by James Oseland in my pocket.

By the time we came back to the hotel from Big-O’s swim lesson…

…it was dinnertime. 

I was tired and hungry, so I threw together an impromptu drumstick, mushroom, and onion bake that I shoved in the oven to roast while I dunked the boys in the bathtub.

While the boys relaxed with a game of Plants vs. Zombies on the iPad, I sautéed a bag of spinach…

…and nuked a few leftover baked yams.

By the time my hubby returned from the city, supper was ready.

Here’s my dinner plate:

I know I just posted about my love for It Starts With Food, but I wanted to let you in on another awesome book I’ve been poring over. 

Ripe is a beautiful new cookbook about fruits and veggies written by award-winning blogger/author Cheryl Sternman Rule and features amazing photos by Paulette Philpot (who’s also won tons of accolades). It’s not Paleo per se, but just looking at the mouth-watering photos of bright and inventive dishes will inspire you to play with your produce all summer long (and beyond!). Plus, Cheryl’s prose is delightfully clever. Love it.

About Michelle Tam

Hello! My name is Michelle Tam, and I love to eat. I think about food all the time. It borders on obsession. I’ve always loved the sights and smells of the kitchen. My mother was (and is) an excellent cook, and as a kid, I was her little shadow as she prepared supper each night. From her, I gained a deep, abiding love for magically transforming pantry items into mouth-watering family meals.

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