Tuesday, June 14, 2011


I love this picture.  I took it when I was documenting Abby's 13 month mark.  I love the stripes on her shirt.  I love her cute little hands with her fingers spread out.  And I especially love the back of her sweet head.  This view is something I see all the time but I wouldn't normally think, "I need to capture that."  I'm so glad I did. 

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Grilled Margherita Pita Pizza

When asked what my favorite food is, I often say pizza.  My preferred pizza includes a thin, crispy crust, and any combination of fresh ingredients.  I love that there are countless possibilities when it comes to toppings.  For instance, caramelized sliced pears are simply divine on pizza in my opinion. 

With that said, nothing really beats the simple, yet tasty margherita pizza.  Tomatoes, fresh mozzarella cheese, and basil is just a terrific combination that I adore.  This is a perfect recipe to make with a fresh tomato and basil, so make sure to bookmark this recipe for when you have an abundance of each from your garden at the end of the summer. I've said it before, but I use pitas as my crust all the time for ease.  You can obviously make your own crust to make this even better.  Here is my version of the classic Italian pizza.
Grilled Margherita Pita Pizza (makes one pita pizza)

1 flat, round pita
1 tomato, chopped (mine was a roma, so about that size was perfect)
1 clove garlic, minced
olive oil
red pepper flakes

fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into thin slices (enough to cover the pizza)
fresh basil leaves, cut in ribbons

Mix tomato with a splash of olive oil, garlic, salt, and some red pepper flakes.  Grill the mixture until the tomatoes become soft (I made a little foil package for mine like so).

Transfer the mixture back into a bowl and mush it up a little so it becomes more of a sauce, but with little chuncks of tomato still there.  

Drizzle olive oil on both sides of the pita and grill until it becomes golden and a little crispy.  Add tomato mixture and then top with mozzarella mixture.  Put your grill hood on to help the cheese melt (if using an indoor grill like me, place a bowl over your pizza).

  Continue to grill until the cheese is melted.  Top with fresh basil before serving and eat immediately. Enjoy! 

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Barbeque Chicken Salad with Honey Lime Dressing

This salad is full of great flavors that really work together.  Both Landon and I really thought it was tasty.  I got the idea for the dressing from this blog (at least I'm pretty sure that's where it came from) but changed it up a bit to satisfy my tastes.  With that said, feel free to play around with it so that you love it!  I didn't top ours with crispy bacon but I am certain it would be delicious, so I have included it in my recipe.  Also, a little bit of blue cheese crumbled on top could be great as well.  I hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

Barbeque Chicken Salad with Honey Lime Dressing

1/3 cup cilantro, chopped
zest of 1 lime
1 Tbs. fresh lime juice
2 tsp. honey
1/3 cup mayonnaise (I use mayo with olive oil)
1 Tbs. olive oil or canola oil
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
salt and pepper


2 Roma tomatoes, diced
1 cup corn
2 scallions, chopped
4 cups spinach or other leafy greens
1 chicken breast, baked or grilled, cut, and then smothered with BBQ sauce (I used spicy BBQ sauce)
2 slices of bacon, crumbled (optional)
1/4 cup blue cheese (optional)

Whisk all dressing ingredients together and set aside.  In a small bowl, add tomatoes, corn, and scallions.  Toss the tomato mixture with some of the dressing to coat (a couple Tbs. or so).  
Assemble the salad in a large bowl by layering the greens, tomato mixture, and chicken.  Top with bacon and cheese if using.  Top with extra dressing if desired.  I didn't really think it needed much more, but that's just me.  You can make extra dressing if you plan to serve it on the side.  Serve and enjoy!

Monday, May 16, 2011

#11. Run a Half Marathon

I finally sat down last week and found a half marathon race I plan to run.  I haven't signed up yet because I want to see how the first couple of weeks of training go.  It is on August 13 and the place to catch the bus for the race is right by my house.  It should work perfectly.

I'm so excited.  I'm looking forward to incorporating more speed and endurance training into my workouts (as opposed to just going out to run for 30 minutes).  Training with my baby will be interesting but very doable.  She loves going for runs and if I need to, I can go to the track once she has gone to bed to do speed training since it stays light so long these days.  It seems like the perfect time to do this and I'm crossing my fingers I don't get injured along the way.

I want to see how my training goes, but right now I want to shoot for finishing in right at about 2 hours.  My first and only other half time was 1:51 and some seconds, but I was in pretty good shape and had a while to train for it.  I'm not trying to set a PR (personal record) or anything like that, I just want to have something to shoot for and do well.

So I guess that is my major summer plan!  Anyone else training for anything this summer?

I couldn't find the pictures from my previous half marathon, but here's one from the marathon I did.  Hopefully I will be smiling at the end of my race in August!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


My husband and I started doing weekly photo challenges for fun.  We pick a random word out of the dictionary as the theme for the week.  This last week the word was...

Extrusive: relating to or formed by geological extrusion from the earth in a molten state or as volcanic ash

Here is what I came up with.

This is Landon's.

This week the theme is "dispatch."  If you want to join in on the fun, feel free!  Upload your photo here.  You have to be invited to the group in order to post, so let me know if you want an invite.  It doesn't matter to us what type of camera you use or how literal or symbolic your picture is.  This is just meant to be a fun way to do something artsy during the week.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Mussamun Currry

My husband and I love to go out for Thai and Indian food and curries are our favorite dishes to get.  I have made a few curries at home but I'm often intimidated to try something new.  I get worried that the prep will be too long (my meal preparing has to be quick these days with a baby crawling all over the place and into everything), that I won't be able to find the spices and ingredients, and that I'll mess it up somehow.  I promise you, this recipe is really simple and can be easily incorporated into your regular meal routine.

Prepared mussamun curry paste is pretty readily available.  You can likely find it in an Asian market and even regular grocery stores can carry it.  If you can't find it, it looks like Amazon even sells some.

I got the recipe from this book and just made a couple minor changes to healthify it a bit.  Mussamun is traditionally made with beef, but I used chicken.  Feel free to substitute beef if you'd like.  This recipe makes a lot! I made half of the following recipe for the two of us the other night and we had plenty of leftovers, enough for dinner the next night and then some.

Gaeng Mussamun (Mussamun Curry)

1 pound chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
3 cups coconut milk (I always use low-fat)
1/4 cup mussamun curry paste
2 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth 
3 medium potatoes, washed and cut in bite-sized chunks (about 2 cups)
1 large onion, large dice (about 1 1/2 cups)
3 Tbs. fish sauce
2 Tbs. brown sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 cup unsalted peanuts
1tsp. lime zest 
2 Tbs. fresh lime juice

In a large saucepan or skillet, bring 1 cup of the coconut milk to a gentle boil over medium heat.  Cook for 2-3 minutes until slightly thickened.  Add the curry paste  and cook for another few minutes, stirring to incorporate it into the coconut milk.  Add the chicken and cook another 3 minutes, tossing to coat it with the sacuce.

Add the remaining 2 cups of coconut milk, chicken broth, potatoes, onion, fish sauce, brown sugar, and salt and bring to a gentle boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.  Stir in the peanuts, lime zest and juice.  Serve warm over basmati rice.  Enjoy!

#50. Take Family Pictures (Part II)

Emily posted some of our family photos on her blog and they happen to basically be ones I picked as my favorites.  So instead of posting them here, I'll just direct you to her fun blog!