Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Our week in Instagram {April 9-15}

A quick recap of last week.

Monday, April 9
Jjr woke up at 5:45 that morning. Since we were up early, we went ahead and did our grocery run. This boy loves Publix- the people, so much to look at, and riding in the cart.

So proud of his new sitting up trick that he'd rather do that than nap.

Tuesday, April 10
It was supposed to be nap time...

Wednesday, April 11
Dressed for church in his Cape Town tshirt that cousin Catherine brought home from her semester in South Africa. 

Thursday, April 12
Spending the afternoon with Mrs. Amy, Brendan and Colin. I meet them at Colin's soccer practice to pick Jack up. He loves this little elmo phone that they have-he wouldn't even look up at me when I got there!
Friday, April 13
Didn't take any pics this day, we spent the day at the mall (one of Jack's favorite places) and running errands.

Saturday, April 14
I woke up, looked at the monitor, saw that he was standing up and ran in to get him!

This is his favorite part of the Baby Einstein DVD, the cow...

and the doggie. He lets out a HUGE laugh!

We have these Laugh and Learn Homes in the church nursery and Jack LOVES them. After I saw him playing with one and heard from Mrs. Jane (who keeps Jack while I teach ballet) that he loves to ring the doorbell, I decided that we just had to have one for home. But, I looked them up on Amazon and couldn't believe the price - $120. Woah. Instead I decided to search Craig's List. I've never bought anything on that site before but now was the time to try. There was ONE Laugh and Learn Home and it just happened to be about 9 miles away from our house.

I emailed the owner and worked out a pickup for the next day. The Laugh and Learn Home was in almost perfect condition, had all it's little pieces, everything worked, and the best part was that we only paid $30 for it! 

I had so much fun going to get it. John said it's a little taste of what Christmas and birthdays will be like with him. He also said that it's a gift to us because it keeps Jack occupied:)

When I got home with it, Jack stared at it while I carried it in, watched while I cleaned it off, and when John let him loose, he crawled straight over to it and started ringing the door bell!

now he wants to stand up everywhere

Sunday, April 15
John's 30th Birthday! 
(I'm trying to convince JSr. to take us to NYC {I need to see Newsies!} for our 30th birthdays, but he says Vegas- we'll see if either of us wins this discussion)

Jack dressed for church

Happy Birthday Daddy!

Grandmommy Amy wanted to see Jack needed to hand deliver preschool ballerina tutus so I could hand them out to my girls for the upcoming recital. She drove over Sunday morning and brought Jane along with her. They got to see Jack and John & I got to go out for birthday dinner.

We chose our favorite sushi place, Pearl Lian. We've only had takeout from them so we decided to try dining in for a change. The food was amazing as always and the interior of the restaurant was beautiful. We will definitely be back and decided that it will be a great place to take friends and family who are visiting from out of town.

ordering the sushi

love the saki servers. must find some for our house.

Thanks Gran and Grandmommy Amy for letting us have a date night!

A quick visit with the grandmas. So good to see them but so sad that they had to leave so soon.

Grandmommy Amy

Bruster's ice cream cake (which I secretly picked up while I was picking up the Laugh and Learn home Saturday night). This might possibly be John's favorite part of having a birthday. Have I told you that he wanted his Groom's cake to be an ice cream cake?

Sweet snuggle bug lays his head on your shoulder when he's tired. And he was REALLY tired Sunday night...church, potluck lunch, grandmas, daddy's birthday, and only one nap.

A great ending to another amazing week. 

Monday, April 16, 2012

In Our Kitchen ~ Crab Cakes

Not only does John say that this is one of the best things that I cook, he says these
crab cakes are the best he's had ANYWHERE. 
The recipe is from the Williams-Sonoma Bride & Groom Cookbook. I registered for this cookbook at WS when we got married and every recipe I've made from it has been amazing.

1 Tbsp olive oil
1/3 cup minced yellow onion
1/3 cup minced celery
Kosher salt and pepper
1lb fresh or thawed frozen lump crabmeat
3/4 cup fine fresh bread crumbs (WS has a recipe for this but I just use the Progresso boxed bread crumbs)
1/2 cup mashed potatoes, cooled (these mashed potatoes taste just like Grandma Catherine's!)
3 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1/4 cup mayonnaise
2 Tbsp chopped fresh chives
2 Tbsp chopped fresh tarragon
1/4 tsp ground cayenne pepper
Juice of 1/2 lemon, or to taste
1 cup fine toasted bread crumbs
Spicy mayonnaise for serving
Arugula leaves for serving

Heat the olive oil in a small sauté pan over medium-low heat. Add the onion and celery and sauté until tender, about 10 minutes; do not let brown. Season lightly with salt, remove from the heat, and let cool completely. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine the crabmeat, fresh bread crumbs, mashed potatoes, mustard, mayonnaise, chives, tarragon, cayenne, and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Mix together gently with a fork to keep the mixture fluffy, with big flakes of crabmeat intact. Carefully stir in the cooled onion mixture. Add a little more lemon juice, cayenne, or salt to suit your taste.

To form the cakes, spread the toasted bread crumbs on a plate. Use a 1/4 cup measure to scoop out the crab mixture and drop into the crumbs. Coat each side lightly with the crumbs, patting them on so they adhere, and form a compact cake about 3/4 inch thick. You should be able to form 8 crab cakes. At this point, you can refrigerate the cakes until just before ready to cook and serve.

When ready to serve, preheat the oven to 200ºF. Heat half of the oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Place 4 of the cakes in the pan and cook on one side until a golden crust forms, about 3 minutes. Use tongs or a spatula to turn the cakes over and continue cooking until a golden crust forms on the second side, about 3 minutes more. Remove the cakes from the pan and keep warm in the oven while adding the remaining half of the oil to the sauté pan and cooking the remaining 4 cakes.

To serve, place the crab cakes on individual plates with a dollop of spicy mayonnaise, if using, and a sprinkling of arugula leaves. 

If you made mashed potatoes, you should have enough to serve some on the side. I also serve asparagus or salad when I make this meal.

These are really pretty easy to make, especially once you've done it once or twice. Also, you can experiment with some variations - store bought mayo vs. making your own, adding the spicy mayo, toasting your own bread crumbs (I found that to be too much work), adding minced ginger, chopped bell peppers, or chopped sautéed spinach. 

The only downside to this meal is the cost of the crab meat. The last time I made this, I bought one tub of fresh Jumbo lump cramp meat and one tub of lump crab meat from the seafood counter- that way you still get the big lumps but you aren't paying as much for the crab (and I happened to be shopping for this when the crab meat was on sale!). Making the full recipe would easily feed 4 people, so if you're only feeding 2 and don't want leftovers, you can cut the recipe in half.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Our week in Instagram {April 1-8}

Due to my photo obsession, I have probably tried every camera app out there in the last 2.5 years of owning an iPhone. Instagram is by far my favorite- user friendly, social networking & ease of posting to other sites (fb, twitter) and a good variety of filters that actually look good. (although now that fb has bought them, I hope it doesn't get out of control- I was enjoying just having about 15 friends posting and commenting, oh well).

Most of the time it's much easier to snap a pic with my phone than lug around the dslr all the time and miss a shot because the lighting isn't good. Instagram makes it better, though, so I'm not just taking boring phone pics! Here's a quick recap of our week in Instagram...

Sunday, April 1
Took this little guy on my coupon run to CVS and he was doing so good that I decided to run to Target also.  I found bunny ears in the $1 bin so I put them on his head to see what he would do. He definitely left them on for our entire 45 min trip. It was the cutest thing ever. EVERYONE stopped to talk to him and a couple people even asked to take his picture.
Too adorable to resist

Monday, April 2
I get to see this smile every time I get him out of bed

Daddy finds all the tricks to make him giggle!

and Kentucky won their 8th National Basketball Championship!

Tuesday, April 3

Errand running around Northpoint- buybuyBABY here to buy a baby Ergo carrier. I suspected that I had bought a fake on eBay- had no idea that ppl even made fakes- so we went to purchase a real one to compare. Verdit = eBay purchase a fake, a pretty good one, but definitely fake. The seller refunded my $ so all is right, but it worries me that others may not notice that what this guy is selling isn't real {or safety tested for that matter}! I still need to contact eBay about that.  

Since we were so close to John, we met him for lunch, got a tour of his office, and everyone got to meet Jack!

Yucky veggies
always spits them out....

Wednesday, April 4
John and I started going to a cute little Korean dentist while we were living in Duluth. We love him and his staff so much that we still go there. They schedule our appts one after the other, so we were able to trade Jack off.  We took him in to meet everyone and they were all so sweet and excited to play with Jack.

Shorty Howell Park was my favorite place to run while we lived in Duluth and the dentist's office is right next to the park. After our appointments were over we walked over through the trail and played a little.

The fun never stops when daddy comes home

John figured out that Jack thinks it's HILARIOUS for the lion to hit his head on the drum. We've never heard him laugh so hard!

Sitting up in the bath all the time now

Thursday, April 5
Mrs Brandy came over to play, and I went to my 6 month check up with Dr. Gumer. Such a sweet man, and he told me that he was proud of me:) 
Saw Jack's pic on the board.

Then a little afternoon photo shoot while the skies were perfectly cloudy

So I finally caved and let Jack watch TV. A Baby Einstein DVD. He was enthralled. His favorite part is where they show pictures of real animals- he giggles at the doggie and the cow. We've been suspecting that he likes real animals for a while now - he loves the book "That's Not My Monkey," he shows preference to his Sophie the giraffe, loves Piper, and his stuffed animals-  now we definitely know he likes animals. So sweet.

More fun with daddy

loves to stick his tongue out

Friday, April 6
A visit to mrs janelle

Saturday, April 7
Spent the day relaxing at home

Someone can sit up all by himself!

and try to pull himself up!

watched the Braves game

and delivery from our favorite sushi restaurant, Pearl Lian

Sunday, April 8

Jack's first Easter

It's amazing to realize how much happens in a week when I look back at a summary of what we did. So many fun things. And always some kind of "first" for Jack. This was another wonderful week.

Friday, April 6, 2012

jack and doggie

The weekly {and monthly} jack and doggie pics
9 months
May 1

40 weeks
April 30

39 weeks
April 23

38 weeks
April 16

37 weeks
April 9
36 weeks (and a Kentucky Bball National Championship!)
April 2
8 months
April 1
35 weeks
March 26
34 weeks
March 19
33 weeks
March 12
32 weeks
March 5
7 months
March 1
30 weeks
February 27
29 weeks
February 21
28 weeks
February 13
27 weeks
February 6
6 months
February 1
26 weeks
January 30
25 weeks
January 23
24 weeks
January 16
23 weeks {and a Bama Football National Championship!}
January 9
5 months
(& 22 weeks)
January 1

{We were in Huntsville for Christmas during what would have been his 21 week pic.}

20 weeks
December 19
19 weeks
December 12
18 weeks
December 5
4 months
December 1
17 weeks #2
November 29
17 weeks
November 29
16 weeks
November 21
15 weeks
November 15
14 weeks
November 7
3 months
November 1
13 weeks
October 31
12 weeks
October 24
11 weeks
October 17
10 weeks
October 10
9 weeks
October 3
2 months
October 1
8 weeks
September 26
7 weeks
September 19
6 weeks
September 12
1 month (official onesie)
September 7

5 weeks
September 5
1 month
September 1
4 weeks
August 29

3 weeks
August 22

2 weeks
August 15

1 week
August 8