Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The Garden State - Our Time in New Jersey


How ironic that New Jersey is called the Garden State, because we spent a lot of time playing in Bill's Aunt and Uncle's garden.  His Aunt Kristin showed us everything they had planted and we helped to pick the harvest and learned their methods and techniques.  The picture above is one days worth of spoils, and made some really yummy salsa if I do say so myself :)

Our time in New Jersey was wonderful and relaxing.  I was so thrilled that this is how our trip began.  We visited the local brew pup, cooked dinner together and made drinks, stopped by the cider farm, played games, saw historical sites, walked through town, went to a farmer's market, shopped a little and spent time in our comfy clothes lounging in their home by the fire or eating snacks on the deck.  Honestly, it could not have been more perfect. 

When Kristin pulled up to the airport with coffee for everyone in thermoses and tea for me, I knew that this time together would be wonderful.  Even after the haze that follows a red eye, the cold rain woke us up and brought us into her reality which she was so thrilled to show us.  I can't wait to go back and spend more time in this enchanting area.



Thank you for sharing your home with us Kristin and Al!  
I loved every minute of it :)  

More to come on our East Coast trip soon...

In the meantime, enjoy your Thanksgiving friends!  
We all have so much to be grateful for :)

Monday, November 17, 2014

Be Encouraged - How Sweet the Name of Jesus Sounds

Sometimes a hymn hits me in church like a ton of bricks - the significance of it overwhelms me.  Two weeks ago we sang these words and every one dripped off my tongue like water for my soul.  Isn't it amazing the effect something can have on you?  It refreshed my mind set and gave me such a future perspective and reminded me what is truly important.  I hope it has the same effect on you.

How sweet the name of Jesus sounds in a believer's ear!
It soothes his sorrows, heals his wounds and drives away his fear.

It makes the wounded spirit whole, and calms the troubled breast
Tis' manna to the hungry soul and to the weary rest.

Dear name! the Rock on which I build my shield and hiding place
My never failing treas'ry filled with boundless stores of grace.

Jesus, my Shepherd, Brother, Friend, my Prophet, Priest and King
My Lord, my Life, my Way, my End, accept the praise I bring.

Weak is the effort of my heart, and cold my warmest thought
But when I see thee as thou art, I'll praise thee as I ought.

Till then I would thy love proclaim with every fleeting breath
And may the music of thy name refresh my soul in death.


My prayer for each of you is to find words that bring life into perspective for you and make you live in a way that you can be proud of and honors the Lord.  

Friday, November 14, 2014

Food I Ate Friday - Open-Face Vietnamese Chicken Sandwiches

Open-Face Vietnamese Chicken Sandwiches

Ingredients

1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
2 medium carrots, shaved into ribbons with a vegetable peeler
4 radishes, thinly sliced
2 crusty hoagie-style rolls
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup fresh lime juice (from about 4 limes)
2 teaspoons honey
2 tablespoons chopped cornichons or gherkins, plus 1 tablespoon brine from the jar
Kosher salt
3 cups shredded rotisserie chicken (from 1 small chicken)
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro, plus cilantro leaves for topping
1 tablespoon Asian chile sauce (such as Sriracha)

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Soak the red onion, carrots and radishes in ice water for 5 minutes, then drain. Split each roll in half lengthwise to make 4 pieces. Transfer to the oven to toast.

Whisk 1/4 cup mayonnaise, the lime juice, honey, cornichons and brine, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Add the chicken, onion, carrots, radishes and chopped cilantro and toss. Mix the chile sauce and the remaining 1/4 cup mayonnaise in a small bowl.

Spread each piece of bread with some chile mayonnaise, then top with the chicken salad and cilantro leaves.


These bad boys have been in me and Bill's lunch boxes (figuratively speaking of course - more like leftover plastic bags) all week :)  Honestly, they were absolutely delicious and super easy to make.  We skipped the oven toasting step (although that is the classier version), and just got some good crusty bread and toasted it in the toaster.  We also had a big jar of capers on hand, so we used those instead of cornichons.  It has absolutely been a lunch worth repeating!

Hoping you have been eating well and trying new things :)  I have another delightful recipe to share next week, so be sure to check back!

Read more at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchens/open-face-vietnamese-chicken-sandwiches-recipe.html?oc=linkback

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Dunsterville's Tie the Knot - My Little Sister's Wonderful Wedding Part 1


Before I tell you about our East Coast trip and how each part of it was even better than we could have imagined, I want you to know that the culmination of it all, the Dunsterville wedding, was absolutely breath taking.  I know everyone thinks that their family is the greatest and no one could compare, but there is a certain magic in mine that I know nothing could ever touch.

The older we get the more sincere we become.  I feel like each person has changed for the best over the past few years, but above all else, my siblings have just grown up.  This celebration felt meaningful and special.  I cannot possibly put it into words.  It sparkled and glowed and couldn't possibly have been as fabulous as I am remembering it.

I will do a blog next week with more pictures and anecdotes and specific memories, but what I wanted to say today was this... 

Congratulations Faith and Josh!  As our speech so colorfully said, you were meant for each other and are such a wonderful couple.  Bill and I have been honored to go through your dating journey with you and are thrilled to live near you as you begin your marriage.  We love you both so much and are so happy to finally call Josh our brother!  Cheers to many anniversaries to celebrate in your future :)

Stay tuned as I catch you up on our three legged trip and lot's of pictures and memories come flowing, also a great recipe post to come on Friday!  


Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Where Do I Begin?

The past month has been a blur.

I feel like I can't even begin to catch you up on the whirlwind of amazing moments.

In the next few weeks I want to sit down and share about my East Coast Trip, the Dunsterville Wedding, some fall recipes and so much more.  

Please keep being patient with me while I gather pictures and memories and compile them into a few blog posts that hopefully will give you a glimpse into my life :)

I'll be back soon...I promise.

Until then, I hope this makes you smile!

There is no angry way to say “bubbles.”- challenge accepted!