Monday, July 9, 2012

Summer Days

Well, I haven't blogged in about five weeks. Wow! Time goes by fast. Life has been super busy with organizing Vacation Bible School and our week long trip to Lake Chelan with my family, both of which went wonderfully.

It seems that some have missed my blogging, which makes me smile. It is pretty amazing that I can get on the computer and write about whatever is going on with me and people actually like to read it :) Thank you for your encouragement.

I have two updates for my readers . . .

First, we have decided to stay at the homeschooling resource center, Edmonds Heights, that we have already been enrolled in for the past two years. Finalizing this decision was a huge relief to me and I couldn't feel better about it. I realized that the community that we have found at Edmonds Heights is priceless. I mean, if I was actually at home by myself with the children without any other adults all of the time, I might actually go insane. This would not make me a very good teacher, mother or wife, so I figured we should avoid this scenario.

Second, I took Noah back to the eye doctor to make sure that his prescription is correct, which it is. But furthermore, I found out that his eyes have grown a lot stronger in the past couple of months since he got his glasses, so that is another huge relief! Yay Noah!

We got back from our trip to Chelan on Friday and were glad to see that summer has arrived in Seattle. We have spent so much time outside this past weekend and are loving every minute of it.

While our heat wave is nothing compared to what a lot of the country has been experiencing, our split-level house can get pretty warm in the summer time. I have been meal planning this weekend and am happy to be trying several new things for warm weather cooking.

The first thing I must share is that I have learned how to use the pressure cooker that I received for Christmas (about time, right?). Do you know what this means? IT MEANS THAT I BRAISED A WHOLE CHICKEN IN TWENTY MINUTES! That's right - a whole chicken! I didn't have to turn on the oven, and I feel like I have to say it just one more time: I had an entire chicken cooked in just twenty minutes. Much faster. And without the heat that is created when I roast a chicken at 425 degrees for 90 minutes to two hours.
Yummy! This chicken played the main role in two different batches of Chinese Chicken Salad - a great main dish on hot summer days.
My pressure cooker is so large that I could easily fit three whole chickens in it, which I will be trying soon.
The chicken cooked for ten minutes at 15 psi. Now that I am understanding the science better, I am hoping to do some canning later on.

Also, I am replacing my daily Diet Coke habit with Tazo Iced Passion Tea. I make it with a little honey and it is so delicious and so refreshing. I am excited to try and make a light sangria by mixing it with white wine and fruit!

As far as dinners go, we will be using our grill quite a bit in the next week. Some things on the menu are Vegetable Summer Rolls and Chilled Avocado Cucumber Soup, Grilled Shrimp Caesar Salad (I will be grilling the romaine too), Lemon Rosemary Lamb Kebabs, Turkey Burgers with Roasted Eggplant Spread, three different types of grilled pizza and Panzanella (Italian bread salad) with Salami. Yum, yum!

I hope you are enjoying summer time as much as we are!

Here's a few photos showing how much we enjoyed our time in Chelan . . .

Love the bee details on the back of this swimsuit

Sandy butt

Where'd it go? Meaning the duck that is running away from the scary toddler.

Veronica found a great pillow - big and soft! :)

Veronica is the easiest 1 year old that I've ever taken to the beach. She was perfectly content to just sit with us on the beach blanket and watch everything going on around her.

Gimme that hat!

Would you like me to pick your nose, Daddy?

Cuddling on the Beach

Decking out the bikes for the parade. Thanks for all the decorations Nana!

One of the biggest, orangest moons I've ever seen, but the picture doesn't show it very well.

Veronica and I dolled up for the holiday

Just chillin'

The boys got to be in the 4th of July parade with their cousins.

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