Feb 24, 2010

Long Week...

We have had a looonnngg week.  First I want to thank all my wonderful friends and family for their prayers for my dad.  Last week we got a pretty scary phone call letting us know my dad was going to the hospital for his heart.  I don't care how common or routine a heart issue is....when it's your dad, it's REALLY scary.  My dad is doing great, is very healthy and very hard headed so I have no doubt that he will be around a long time.  Dad if you are reading this I love you...and no alcohol or caffeine!!

On a lighter note, this past weekend I got to celebrate of Page's Birthday and see Virgina and Corrie's new house!   It is always so much fun to see all these girls. 
I will be back soon with recipes!

Feb 14, 2010

Our Lovely Weekend

More snow!  Even though it melted away very quickly we did get to play in the snow for a little while Saturday morning.  My Valentine drew this in the snow for me.

We celebrated Valentine's Day on Saturday because Ryan had to study all day today for his two tests this week.  On Friday I made our dessert.  I got my inspiration from these Little Debbie cakes.  I used to always find these in my lunch around this time of year as a little girl.  I saw them in the grocery store a few weeks ago and have not been able to stop thinking about them.   Although I used a boxed mix for the cake (Better Crocker makes awesome Gluten Free mixes), I did make my own cream filling and frosting.
I happen to have two personal size heart shaped pans.  I used them to make these cakes, cut them in half and spread on the cream filling.
I iced them with strawberry white chocolate icing.
Here is my attempt to make them look like the Little Debbie ones.
And here is what I did with the other half of the cake mix!
I used some conversation hearts to make a candle arrangement.
Here is our table right before dinner.  We made brie champagne fondue...it was amazing!
I am so lucky to have such a wonderful husband and Valentine.   Wish this weekend did not go by so fast... Happy Valentine's Day!!

Feb 11, 2010

Pink and Red Pasta

When we first got married I did most of the cooking, but one day I did come home to a surprise...Ryan making a pasta dish for dinner!!  This dish has become one that we make about once a month as we thoroughly enjoy it. We do not usually make certain meals over and over, but this is an exception.  Now you can always find us both in the kitchen, but every time we make this pasta, it reminds me of the first time Ryan cooked for me:)  With Valentines Day around the corner I thought it was a good time to share it with yall.

Boil noodles.  We use these, but use the noodles of your choice...


Now make your pesto.  You can buy store bought, but we like to make our own for this dish.
Just put it all in a food processor and pulse until it is the consistancy you like.
Now cook the salmon in a pan as whole fillets with a little olive oil, then break up or shred to brown and complete cooking until it looks like this...
Rinse and cut the cherry tomatoes in 1/2 or in quarters.

Drain your noddles and add to the pan with salmon.  Then add the pesto and tomatoes.  Toss to combine.
Serve with some Parmesan cheese on top.
We call it pink and red pasta because of the salmon and tomatoes, but call it whatever you want.  It is easy to make and looks impressive.

Feb 9, 2010

Super Bowl and Super Birthday

I went to My Dad's house on Sunday to watch the Super Bowl and to celebrate his birthday. Here is my littlest brother saying Happy Birthday...I couldn't resist showing you all how cute he is!!

While we cooked, Jake helped Zach make an appetizer...out of toys and my spoon(he kept taking the spoon off the counter that I was using and telling me he needed it "to cook").
It looks like I am eating this, but I promise I did not.  I did get a lot of laughs for pretending that it was the best meal I ever had!  Although the fake food was fun, the real food was much better.  Ryan and I gave my Dad this Gamecock platter and we used it for the shrimp appetizer that Michelle made:) 
Per his request I made my Dad Spinach Artichoke dip.  We used carrot slices and chips to dip, and served jalapenos on the side.

And of course we had cake...

Happy Birthday again to my Dad. I am so glad the Super Bowl fell on his day, what a great way to celebrate!!!

Feb 7, 2010

Saturday night and 80's music

Last night Ryan and I went out with some friends.  John and Jackie invited us out and at the last minute Blake and Lindsay came into town from Charlotte to join us.  We started the night with dinner at Cafe Luna in Raleigh. Many years ago Ryan and I went on our first date at Cafe Luna on Valentines Day!  I also had my bridal luncheon there, but Ryan had not been back since our first date.  It was so much fun to catch up with old friends and to visit a place so special to us.  After a scrumptious dinner we went to see an 80's cover band at a bar around the corner.  Here are some pics from the night.

Now I am off to finish some sewing projects, make some Super Bowl goodies and wrap some gifts for my Dad...Happy Birthday Dad!

Feb 4, 2010

Chile Rellenos

I know that whenever Ryan has a long day or a test he will, without fail, request Mexican dinner that night.  Since I grocery shop on Sundays for the entire week, I usually plan one Mexican night just in case this happens.   Well, like clockwork Ryan had a test last week and asked for Mexican.  When we go to Mexican restaurants Ryan often orders the Chile Rellenos, but they are not the healthiest because they are usually battered and fried.  Here is our healthier (and much better!) version of a them.
Turn your broiler on high and place the rack on the second shelf.  Place whole pablono peppers under broiler for 15 minutes, turning half way through.

Meanwhile get the rest of the ingredients together, cleaned and chopped.  If you notice we bought Soy Chorizo (from Trader Joes) instead of regular Chorizo becuase it is less greasy and healthier.
Now take the chorizo out of it's casing and cook over medium heat in a pan for 5-8 min.  Add oil, chopped onion, jalapeno and corn for an additional 5 minutes.  Add garlic, tomatoes and cook 2-3 more minutes.  Lastly add cumin and Krazy Janes.
Now when you take the poblanos out of the oven let them cool for a few minutes so you can handle them.

*Optional: Take the skin off the peppers.

Now cut the top off, cut the pepper open and remove the seeds.  Place the peppers in an oven safe dish.
Place 1/4 of the chorizo yumminess in each pepper.  Now shred the cheese and put 1/4 cheese on top of that.  Place the dish in the over (still under broiler) until cheese is melted.
Serve these up with some Margaritas and it will make any test day or bad day better!

Feb 2, 2010

Riley's 4th Birthday!

Hard to believe Riley is 4 years old!!  Not hard to believe because the time has flown by, but because she doesn't act like a four year old:)  When we walk her around the neighborhood we constantly have people ask "How old is your puppy?"  Or "Awww what a cute puppy."  We then reply..."She isn't a puppy, she is almost 4!"  I will be honest that we celebrated Riley's 1st birthday and have forgotten until a few weeks after the past 2 years.  For those of you that know me well, know I am NOT a dog person.  My husband however LOVES dogs.  So since I LOVE my husband I tolerate LIKE dogs.  Riley has taught me patience and love and for that I am very thankful.  Here she is 4 years ago.

She is still full of life, energy, and love for us. 

Well this year she certainly could not have had a better day.  She spent the weekend with her best buddy, Cody.  It snowed and she loves to run and eat snow!  When we returned home, we took her on several walks and played in our neighborhood dog park on Sunday.

We also gave her a special birthday treat!  The look on her face is priceless...I think she is saying "Stop taking my picture and let me eat that now!!!"
After a long and exciting day she passed out...What a great life!