Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Party Recipes

Here are a few recipes friends are asking for these days. We had the hamburgers at Anna's b-day party this year and have served the Black Bean Salad at previous gatherings.

Tropical Hamburgers, makes 4 patties
1 lb ground beef
4 oz crushed drained canned pineapple
3 oz medium cheddar cheese
2 Tbsp Yoshidas marinade
fresh ground pepper
1/2 C bread crumbs
1 egg lightly beaten
just enough chicken broth to make it mixable (about 1-2 Tbsp)
mix all ingredients together to make the patties

Black Bean and Cilantro Salad
3-15oz. cans black beans rinsed and drained
1 C fresh frozen or canned corn kernels
1/4 C fresh tomatoes diced
1/4 C red bell pepper diced
1/4 C green bell pepper diced
1/4 C red onion diced
1 tsp jalapeno pepper, minced
1/3 C olive oil
2 Tbsp fresh squeezed lime juice, about 1 lime
1/4 C fresh cilantro, minced
salt and pepper to taste
In a large bowl, mix black beans, corn, tomatoes, peppers and red onion. Drizzle with oil and lime juice: toss. Sprinkle with cilantro. Season to taste. Serve at room temperature.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

"Car" Camping

I admit it. I love camping. And when I say "camping", I expect the whole world to know I'm talking about what others might refer to as "car camping." I've heard rumors about this so-called camping where you heft a backpack for miles, forego showering for days or weeks and cook all food over an open fire. Give me a Jeep stuffed full of camping stoves, bulky sleeping bags, gallons of milk, kites, air matresses, buckets of food and kids' bicycles. Give me a campground with groomed sites, a nice heavy picnic table, grimy coin-operated showers and toilets accessible round the clock. I am a happy car camper.

This past weekend we dragged our friends, the Johnson's, along for a wild, kid-infested weekend at Ocean Shores, a campground visited by both Brian and I as kids. Check out the Johnson's blog to follow their amazing journey to their adopted baby girl in China. Thank you, Samuel, for providing my favorite moment of the weekend. It wouldn't have been the same if you hadn't stood at the edge of our campsite holding a shovel in the air and growling at our neighbors.

Take note, readers. Today is the epic day I will attempt a Got Injera first: a slide show chronicling our sandy weekend.

A few thoughts about the weekend highlighted in the pictures:
* It took Ernie virtually no time to jump right into the ocean. He had this sort of innate drive to then roll in the sand on the way back to the campsite.
*Smores are yummy. Save the dark chocolate for the moms and dads.
*Digging a big hole in the sand equals hours of entertainment.
*Flexing your muscles does sometimes look like the chicken dance, if you do it like we do it in our house.
*Superhero underware substitutes nicely for pants.
*Camping in the rain is no fun. I highly recommend packing up BEFORE it starts raining.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Happy 1st!

The big day came and went so fast. It is hard to believe our little girl is one! Here are some pictures and a list of the amazing things Anna can do.

*Can moo when we ask her what a cow says. Sounds like "boo" when she says it

*Grunts in her interpretation of a dog barking when we ask her what a doggie says

*Dances when she hears music

*Knows how to get Mom and Dad's attention when Ernie is bothering her- often cries disproportionately loudly to the crime

*Has four teeth

*Just figured out how to grind said teeth against eachother

*Says "ma ma ma" when she's angry

*When asked to say "ma ma ma" smiles sweetly and says "da da da" then laughs

*Loves climbing the stairs, playing in water, reading books

*Eats almost anything, but has rejected mandarin oranges and yogurt consistently
*Lights up when Dada comes home from work

Birthday pictures: