It’s been a long time….

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as you may well know it has been along time since I posted anything on this here blog. Partly because I didn’t feel I had much to share and partly cause I have been to darn busy. Gina in 1st grade now, second year of daisy Girl Scouts, pestering her little brother, and doing her rainbow loom. Casey in nursery school, going to sport/gymnastic class, pestering his big sister, and playing with super hero toys.

As for the Hubbs, he has a new position with J&J, and now travels to Titusville, NJ most days, goes on as many fire calls as he can when home, pestering his wife, and planning our garage renovation, fall 2014 trip to New Orleans, and pestering his wife (Yes I know I already said that). And myself you ask? I keep busy planning scout activities, keeping up daily life chore, trying to get yoga in twice a week, as well as gym workouts. I will be participating in my first 5k event in couple of weeks. The Dirty Girl Mud Run, in GA, with good friend Sally, this event helps research cure for women’s ovarian and breast cancer, and looks to be very fun. Also doing Color Run in May with some of the moms and girls from scout troop, which is running/walking and I will be making tutus for the girls. I pieced together the 2nd of 3 fireman tshirts quilts, and just haven’t had the urge to quilt it yet.

i hope to try and blog once a month on major happenings with us, but don’t hold me to it! Will add few pictures of kids to this blog and maybe some recipes soon.

enjoy!

Fall is near

This weekend we had some very fall like weather, cool nights, nice cool-ish days. So Friday night we decided to have a fire in our pit, but the real wood was just a little wet, so instead we decided to use one of the 3 fake logs I made the hubbs purchase like 3 years ago when we were expecting a blizzard.

The kids enjoyed it as did I and the hubbs, the log lasted just long enough for us, and there may have been some hot chocolate consumption.

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The hubbs in his contemplative state…IMG_1339

The hubbs took this picture playing with my camera, trying to be artistic.

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Me in my contemplation of the fire…

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Casey was either arranging his toy animals or actually putting them away.

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And Saturday was the first UF Gator football game I was able to watch, seeing as the first game was only televised down in Gator land. So as usual I made “snacky foods”…dogs in blankets, queso con sausage, chips, veggies and dip. And we took the now annual family Gator fan pictures…

First silly-ness had to be taken care of….

 

 

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10th Wedding Anniversary

This past Friday, August 30th the hubbs and I reached our 10 year wedding anniversary. We celebrated by dropping off the kiddos at his brother’s and sister in law’s house for a sleep over and then went to dinner.

We went to this restaurant called T. J. Smith’s, which I thought was a steak house type place but turns out was like a sports bar. Food was good, service was alright. Is definitely a place to meet up with friends, but not for intimate dinners.

Any who, I looked up what the “thing” for 10 year wedding is and it is tin. TIN? OK who ever came up with what is for which year, tin, seriously? So my sister in law said try and find like a lunch tin with like his childhood superhero (superman) but I couldn’t find anything that wasn’t ridiculously priced. So then I thought he needs a nice Pitt license plate for his car. Well that didn’t work either they were all ugly or plastic. So I settled on getting him Pitt car floor mats, so in winter his carpet doesn’t get ruined.

 

The hubbs got me these….

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They are my birthstone (right February) and his birthstone (left October).

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Our names are engraved on each one.

IMG_1308 And also the date we got married.

They are from a company called Red Envelope, here is their site….

http://www.redenvelope.com/

I have already told him I would like one for each kid for Christmas. I think he did pretty good, it’s not diamonds, but hey still jewelry and he came up with it on his own!

Enjoy!

 

 

 

Quinoa Salad and 1st Grade

Gina had her first day of First grade this past Tuesday. She got to ride the bus, for the 2nd time, as she kept telling me, because she took it to see a play in kindergarten. She also kept telling us “I didn’t think 1st grade would be so short”. I guess in a 6 year old’s world that is a good thing. I believe Gina will be like me, I always loved school and looked forward to going back at the end of the summer.

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Casey starts preschool this coming Tuesday so maybe end of next week I will post his picture. (I know you are holding your breath :) ).

 

And for your eating pleasure I have whipped up a quinoa salad. I believe I will name this one Summer Quinoa salad. The hubbs and I have been trying to cut down/out sugar in our diets, increase good carbs and protein. Quinoa is the only grain I believe that is full of protein, a super food as it has been labeled. It is easy to make, just like rice, it has texture of pastina (little pasta balls) cooked very aldente, and can soak up any flavor.

I have also been trying to go through my recipes and give gluten free ones to one of my best friends mother, who has arthritis, and has cut all gluten from her diet. Which as I can testify to does lesson the pain from arthritis. So Cindy, this one is for you!

 

Ingredients

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 2 cups water/broth
  • 1/2 to 1 cup of veggies of choice (meaning each veg was 1/2 to 1 cup)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2-3 tbsp of balsamic vinegar
  • S&P to taste

First rinse your quinoa (mine was organic from a local & cheap whole food type store). I read on line this is to take a bitter flavor it may have away.

IMG_1298Put 2 cups of broth/water in pot and add in rinsed quinoa, cover, bring to boil, then lower temp to simmer for 15 minutes or till all fluid is soaked up. (I used beef broth and added enough water to make 2 cups).

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Once quinoa is cooked the rest is simple. Cut up whatever veggies you want. Today I used mini sweet peppers, cucumber, left over zucchini, and onion. I added in the left over basil/tomato salad from last night’s dinner (which had a balsamic vinaigrette on it). Then I added in a little more fresh tomato, basil, and parsley. A pinch of salt, few cracks of pepper, the olive oil, and finally the balsamic vinegar (Oh and some roasted garlic cloves I found in fridge too). Mixed it all together well.

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IMG_1315I also added some feta cheese and chopped olives to my plate, but not to the salad as  a whole seeing as I have a cheese and olive hating hubbs.

I am looking forward to see how much better it will be tomorrow. Tonight it was darn tasty!

Super easy to make. Enjoy!

Fire school and more

Brian and his youngest brother, Kevin, completed fire fighter school earlier in August. We had a party celebrating their accomplishment with friends and family. I thought I would share some of the photos from the party.

These first few pictures are from their actual graduation ceremony.

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Can you see me through the flags?

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Kevin lives in a different tow, hence different fire house, hence hence (I know that isn’t correct but was fun anyway) different “dress uniforms”.

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All of us that were there.IMG_1217

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Now these pictures are from the party held at Kevin and Karen’s house a few days later.

I did bake and decorate this cake, the fire/hat/hose picture is a fondant peal and stick I bought online. I am good but I ain’t that good. The fire hydrant, hat, dog, and boots are candles.IMG_1237

The fire hydrant is a bank I got while in Florida, the yellow hat is one of two of their father’s.IMG_1241

Posters Gina and Casey made.

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people partying and eating and drinking….

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Ice cream cake from DQ! IMG_1257

opening gifts ….IMG_1259

Four generations of Hearn/Fitzgerald firemen. from Top left their father, top right their great grandfather Fitizgerald, bottom left Grandfather Hearn, bottom right Brian & Kevin. They both were given this from their Uncle Mike, Aunt Joan, photos were supplied from Grandmother Hearn and Uncle Eddie Hearn.IMG_1262 IMG_1265 IMG_1266 IMG_1268 IMG_1269

Kids Cake and ice cream…nough said.IMG_1271 IMG_1273 IMG_1274

These flowers were my thank you gift from my grateful hubbs for putting up with 8 months of not being here on Saturdays….

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Lighter tomato pie

I have posted before I am not a huge fan of tomatoes, however I do like yellow tomatoes. Well tis the season round here and I have bought some fresh locally grown tomatoes. I decided to make a tomato pie. Now here in Eastern PA, Philadelphia area, tomato pie is actually a pizza with fresh (or sorta) crushed tomatoes, basil,  and garlic, with no cheese (sometimes places will put like grated Parm cheese on). But down south (like Paula Deen area)  it is an actual pie, with crust on bottom.

I had seen Paula Deen make her version, and Bobby Deen made a lighter version on her website. Well seeing as how I am constantly trying to lose weight, or at least not gain anymore…. I decided to go with Bobby Deen’s recipe.

As you all know who have read this blog before I don’t always go with exact recipes, unless it has to do with baking (even then I might stray). So this one I may not have done exact, but will put a link to the website with the exact recipe.

 

Ok so here is the actual recipe from Paula Deen’s site….

http://www.pauladeen.com/recipes/recipe_view/bobbys_lighter_tomato_pie/

 

Here is what I did…

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 3/4 – 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup green onions
  • 3 strips of left over bacon, crumbles
  • 6 leaves fresh basil
  • 3 yellow tomatoes, sliced thick
  • one frozen deep dish pie crust
  • 3-4 dashes of hot sauce
  • S&P to taste

 

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Mix mayo, cheese, basil, bacon, onions, hot sauce together.

IMG_1286Put about half maybe little more of your sliced tomatoes into pie shell, sprinkle with S&P.

IMG_1288Sprinkle this layer of tomatoes with basil and about half of your cheese (this is why I use about a cup of cheese), top with remaining tomatoes, and little bit more S&P.

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Now gently spread mayo mixture on top of tomatoes, but do not take the mixture all way to edge, leave space it will melt to crust.

 

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Bake 400 degrees till cheese is bubbly golden and pie crust looks done. I of course didn’t get a final picture as per my usual. It was tasty!! And even better the next day.

Options: I would totally add in crumbled sausage, either breakfast or Italian and make it a whole complete meal package. Add in jalapeno peppers or green chili peppers to give it a kick would be good too.

Enjoy!

Where has the time gone…..

It has been a long time since I posted anything. I had thought about just stopping this blog as even now I try and type this the kids will not leave me alone.  And I may still yet. However it is a way to communicate with friends and family, not on FB and other social media. So for now it will stay.

We have had a short but fun, action packed summer. School did not let out here till June 21st, because we lost so much time from hurricane Sandy. Gina went to Girl Scout Day Camp immediately following last day of school and then we loaded up the van and we all headed down south. Stopping in Georgia to see my childhood best friend and his family. The trip down was not pleasant at all, due to horrible traffic and torrential rain, but we did make it.

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The kids, well the little boy on the top far left is a friend of Braydon’s.IMG_0681

This is JR (junior as I call him). We have known each other since preschool age. He a good ole WV born boy.

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This is the torrential rain….nice huh?

While in Florida, the kids and I visited Dinosaur World in Plant City, with my college best friend and her two boys. It was so hot and humid, but we enjoyed it.

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Stephanie one of my two best friends from college. Her boys are Brady and Rylan.IMG_1025

 

The hubbs and I went on a nice relaxing cruise to the Bahamas for 4 days. We were celebrating out 10 year wedding anniversary  a little bit early. The kids stayed with Papa and Grandma and when we returned we had nice trip to Siesta Key beach and visiting with them and my brother Ben and sister in law Jaime and swimming in my cousin Garnet’s pool on the lake.

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While the kids and I were down in Florida the month of July Brian was back up in Pa, finishing up fire fighter school. I am now a proud wife of an official volunteer fire man. Actually this evening is the graduation ceremony and this coming Saturday we are having a party to celebrate not only Brian’s completion of fire school, but his little brother Kevin’s as well.

So I am making a cake, maybe I will take pics of the icing I use, it’s called Faye’s Wonderland icing and it is what my mother has always used. It’s easy and yummy.

Looking a head to the rest of 2013, we have a 1st grader and a 4 year old preschooler, continuing with Girl Scouts, starting of CCD classes, maybe gymnastics for Casey. Trips to Clarion, PA to see Aunt Anna, to West Virginia for Uncle Ronnie’s pig roast and I am sure many other fun things and who knows maybe I will come up with more recipes from the pantry.

Stay tuned…..

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