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We’ve been waiting weeks for the pinewood derby and finally Saturday was the day.  Having two cars to cut, sand, design and paint was a little more daunting than the previous years.  Our oldest helped quite a bit this year, which was awesome.  But having a kindergartener that changed his mind every 10 minutes added to the anxiety for the adults.  Especially since the two adults in charge are not really skilled in the art of pinewood derby cars.  Oh, and there is an art to it.

For days it was a tie between trying to create a football field on the car or trying to transform our block of wood into a realistic Cars movie car.  This poor boy hasn’t realized that our artistic talents are about the same as they were when we were both in grade school.

The little brother came away the big winner this morning for his entry, Francesco (one of the cars from the Cars movie).  He walked away with a first place trophy for Originality.

And, the two adults I mentioned earlier were completely shocked.

The older brother who has won trophies in the past for both Originality and for Craftsmanship won nothing this year.  The disappointment in his face was evident.  However, you can’t win them all.  He did manage to let me snap a few photos of him when we got home (also this was after a large piece of pizza and an ice cream sundae studded with m & m’s).

The boys had a great time today and of course, all of the scouts enjoy seeing the different car designs and who is going to win the trophies.  My husband and I {also known as, “the two adults in charge} breathed a sign of relief that we made it through another derby.

In case you may be wondering, the older one has already sketched the design of next year’s pinewood derby car.

I’m not quite sure how one transitions from our derby experience to salsa-making but I’ll start with saying that this salsa takes just a few minutes to pull together.  Begin by preparing a 1/2 cup of diced red onion and a 1/4 cup of chopped fresh cilantro.

1.  Empty both 14.5-ounce cans of fire-roasted tomatoes with chiles into a mixing bowl.  2.  Add the chopped cilantro, 3 minced garlic cloves  and the diced red onions.  3.  Add 1 tbsp of olive oil and a 1/2 tbsp of red wine vinegar.  4. Lastly, add 1 tsp of dried oregano and then mix well.  Be sure to taste and adjust the seasonings with salt and black pepper.

Here is the finished salsa which I served with the surfboard-shaped tortilla chips from Trader Joes and garnished it with a small sprig of fresh cilantro.  Yesterday morning, I topped some scrambled eggs with some of the salsa and along with a large cup of coffee, just made my day.


Fire-Roasted Tomato Salsa


2 14.5-ounce cans fire roasted tomatoes with green chiles

4 oz can diced green chilies

1/2 cup red onion, diced

1/4 cup cilantro, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tbsp olive oil

1/2 tbsp red wine vinegar

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine all ingredients.  Adjust seasonings with salt and black pepper.  Serve with tortilla chips.

Yield: 4 cups