Tuesday, June 26, 2012

My garden

I wish I had taken "before" pictures. My tiny little plants are doing well, even in this dry heat. All of my veggies, except my green peppers, are beginning to flower. Here they are:

My tomatoes...I thought I focused on the blossoms.

My cayenne pepper, with one little bud.

My eggplant blossom--beautiful lavender.

Cucumbers--you can definitely see the flowers.

My herb garden.
I am really enjoying my herb garden. Tonight, for example, I am making a new recipe and I had not noticed that the dressing called for cilantro. All I had to do was run outside and clip off some cilantro. I love it! I will definitely have to take advantage of my window greenhouse/box and keep herbs all year long. I can't wait for fresh tomatoes soon...

Sunday, June 24, 2012

What we have been up to!

Here's a little update, in pictures, of what we have been up to lately.

1. Stephen celebrated his 27th birthday at a Lakeshore Chinooks baseball game with our friends Andrea and David. We also ate cakepops.

Happy Birthday, Stephen
Stephen and I at the stadium on Lake Michigan
Stephen, David, Andrea

2. The Village of Shorewood hosted a bike race, called the Tour of America's Dairyland. After a nice evening run, Stephen and I went and watched most of the race. It was a beautiful evening. Biking is one sport I enjoy watching, but have no desire to try. Too much equipment!

The finish line, just 3 blocks from our house.
Look at how close we are!

3. We also spent this weekend celebrating in Edgerton. Celebrations were for Stephen's birthday, Father's Day, and my sister's birthday. And we had a wedding. And these fine friends, Mike and Kelly, were in town. It was a great (and exhausting) weekend.
Don't we clean up nicely?
I am looking forward to a quieter week, being at home, and maybe trying a few new recipes to share.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


Last week was Stephen's birthday, so there was lots of celebrating and merriment. I attempted to make cake-pops for the first time ever. The cake part went great.

Batter - with pudding mix for extra moisture
Because I was short on time and was just trying out the process, I used a chocolate cake mix. I added chocolate pudding for extra moisture. Next time I would like to make the batter from scratch, but it worked out for the trial run.
My little cake spheres
Here are the finished cake spheres. The pan I ordered was definitely worth it. It was much simpler than baking a cake, mixing up frosting, and rolling balls. Maybe someday I'll try that way...but for now the $20 infomercial pan from Amazon.com was a lifesaver. (Especially since I don't really like to bake!)

Now, I don't have a picture of the finished product. I am not as proud of the finished product. The frosting/glaze did not turn out well. The pops were covered with chocolate, but it was not a pretty sight. In the end, they tasted great and were a good trial run.

...and I think the birthday boy enjoyed them.

Any other cake-pop trial runs or stories to share?

Sunday, June 10, 2012

A wedding weekend

This weekend Stephen and I returned to  De Pere, where we went to college. Some friends were getting married on campus (like we did) and lots of our close friends were going to be there. There was lots of laughing, eating, and drinking. A truly fabulous weekend. The pictures tell the story.
My friends Livy, Maria, Nicole and I

Tom and my husband

The girls again and the bride's friend from San Diego

It was wonderful to be back on campus and with college friends.  I tried to upload a photo of the beautiful bride, but it just would not cooperate. Let's just say, she was glowing and we wish Molly and Jesse years of happiness.

Monday, June 4, 2012

My beautiful weekend

I had a wonderful weekend. The perfect combination of visiting with friends, maintaining my house, relaxing, and tanning.

This picture says it all. The bluff overlooking the beach near our house in Shorewood. The perfect place to spend a Saturday afternoon.
Atwater Beach, Shorewood

Friday, June 1, 2012


This week I was good at planning ahead and last night I made two dinners (kind of). It was a little too chilly for grilling, so we made fish in a bag in the oven. Overall, the recipe was delicious--essentially fish, zucchini, yellow squash, cherry tomatoes, and white wine. The challenge, however, was making the parchment bag. I am hoping for better luck next time--if it works, I share the recipe and a picture.

While I was waiting for my dinner to cook last night I whipped up a marinade and cut up some sirloin steak. My mom has made a wonderful marinade for years, so I took what I remembered from hers and combined it with a recipe I came across in Bon Appetit. Here it is:

Thinly sliced onion (technically about 6 scallions, but I only had a sweet white onion)
1 garlic clove, chopped
1/2 cup soy sauce
2 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. (packed) brown sugar
1 tsp hot pepper sauce (I used some tobasco)

I did not add anymore salt because soy sauce is pretty salty. I combined the ingredients in a gallon ziploc bag with bit size pieces of sirloin steak.

When we got home tonight after work, Stephen fired up our grill and I chopped some red and yellow peppers. Then we assembled our kebabs with the meat, peppers, cherry tomatoes, and pearl onions. One piece of advice: soak your pearl onions in water so they don't instantly flame once they are on the grill.

Here they are cooking:

Grilling and photography credits go to my husband, Stephen.
Along with a glass of wine and good company, it was the perfect Friday night dinner. Nutritious, delicious, and barely any work (or dishes).