Sunday, July 31, 2011

Layered Ravioli Salad

This recipe was recommended by my Aunt Kathleen, and my mom and I decided to make it for one of our project days (actually, my mom made it while I took care of June... thanks Mom).

Layered Ravioli Salad

1 pkg. (9 oz) refrigerated 4 cheese filled ravioli (the recipe actually calls for Tortellini, but I liked ravioli better)

1 cup frozen sweet peas (from a 1 bl. Bag)

5 cups torn romaine lettuce

1 ½ cups julienne carrots (can buy the ones already done)

2 cups grilled chicken, diced ( I bought a rotisserie chicken, makes it sooooo easy)

1 medium red bell pepper, cut into strips

½ Cup mayonnaise

½ cup refrigerated basil pesto

¼ cup buttermilk

2 tbs. chopped fresh parsley or Basel leaves

1. Cook ravioli as directed on the package, adding peas during the last 4 minutes of cook time. Drain and then remove the ravioli’s from your strainer, putting them in a separate bowl.

2. In a 3-4 quart clear bowl, layer the lettuce, the carrots, chicken, peas, ravioli and place the stripped bell peppers in a circle as your top layer.

3. In a small bowl, mix mayonnaise, pesto and buttermilk. Spread over peppers, and sprinkle with parsley. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours until chilled or better Is overnight. Stir just before serving.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Can't take the heat

I don't have to invade a school carnival or a 6-year-old's birthday party to enjoy a giant inflatable water slide.

I just go to Grandma Marilyn's:

I love these photos because Jay is trying to take down his kids...

...nice try, Jay.

And what's summer without MORE fireworks?

Suppa' Club

Recently a few close friends and I decided to start a Recipe Club. (Renamed "Suppa' Club" thanks to Carli Porter and Jay-Z.) The main reason we formed this club is because we've all wanted to be in a club at some point in our lives, and sadly the only way we could achieve this was forming our own.

Oh and we all love food.
Oh and now we have a great excuse to get together to eat food and play games.
Oh and also we wanted to have a good excuse to make party decorations... cause what's more fun than making party decor?

Here's a taste of Natalie's Suppa' Club Night:

Cute, huh? I love pinwheels. And jars with straws. And Daphne posing.

And here's a taste of MY turn at Suppa' Club:

I think I love decorating for food parties.

Speaking of food, WHERE ARE THE PICTURES OF FOOD? Well, guess what. I've failed to take pictures at BOTH events because I was so hungry by the time we started I inhaled whatever was served in front of me and didn't even bother to take pictures.

I'll try to be better next time, I promise.

Oh and I'll be sure to include more pictures of Daphne poses too.

June Labels

Recently, I've started labeling my posts. I've noticed that most of my labels are of June:

I can't help it. As Grandma Marilyn says: "I think I love her TOO much."

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Babe-raham Lincoln

Meet Lincoln:

He is June's cousin.

And can you believe it? He is 2 months YOUNGER than June.

...but just as big (or bigger?).

And he makes the cutest sad face I've ever seen:

These kids have some good times ahead.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Voyaging into the Realm of Nerds Part IV

I never learned Roman Numerals, (and I'm too lazy to look it up) so I hope that "IV" in my header is the correct number 4.

Well, here it is, the last Potter Party Pics. (See the other parties here)

Starting from the top left: Dementor, Lupin (if you look closely, he is turning into a werewolf), Harry's Patronus, Professor Sprout, Aunt Petunia, Ernie the Bus Driver, Bill Weasley, Filch, Lavender Brown, Lucious Malfoy, The Singing Lady, Hedwig, Dobby

I went as Lavender Brown, Ron's girlfriend in the 6th book. ("My little Won Won!") I love her character because she LOVES Ron. Since Ron is my favorite character, I didn't really have to do much acting.

In the group picture, I'm holding a picture of Ron.
But here, I am holding Ron's baby:

I know what you're thinking, Ron doesn't have a baby... well, not according to Lavender.

AND Ron's baby has the red hair to prove it.

The final party was amazing... we ate in the great hall, played Potter Jeopardy, had the Imperius Curse cast upon us, had a Tri-wizard Tournament, and so much more.

Thank you Andersen family for the memories!! (Again, all the amazing pics were taken by the amazing Janet.)

Mischief Managed.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

3 Years ago (yesterday)

Three years ago yesterday, we looked like this:

So young, so naive, and not a care in the world.

Now we look like this:

So old, so hungry, and a baby on our hip.

With little funds, we had a little anniversary. I put myself in charge and created a Photo Scavenger Hunt (Apparently, we are WAY into scavenger hunts, see here and here).
I made a list of our favorite things. Then we had to "hunt" for them and take pictures of our findings. Since I created the list, I left it up to William to take us where we needed to go.

Here was the list of our favorite things: Cold drinks, shows, Mexico, Hamburgers, Thrifting, Playing Records, Candy, Games, Meat, Firecrackers, and Baby June.

Since we took June along on our adventure, we immediately crossed her off (She's #1).

Our first destination was in Tempe to our new favorite burger place, The Habit (ROBS, HERE'S A REASON TO COME BACK TO AZ).

It is so tasty.

Next, we went to our favorite record store, Zia.

I love Dads in record stores. After much deliberation, we bought 2 'Creedence Clearwater' Albums (But I'm coming back for you, 'Wham' album!!).

Next, we went to get our drinks. Ask me one thing I'm super serious about, it's cold drinks. I will take down anyone who stands in my way of a cold drink on a summer day in AZ. And poor William is becoming the same way.

William is holding a can of "Purple Stuff" in the above photo. Could this be a reference to the super rad and totally popular Sunny D commercial we grew up with? We sure hope so.("It's got healthy junk." "So what?")
We also bought a Peanut Butter Twix bar to cross "candy" off our list.

Mission accomplished.

Next we went to Goodwill to do our favorite kind of shopping, the thrift kind.
Look at these treasures:

You can't contain William's love of animals, and my love of Hard Core wrestling.
Unfortunately, we walked away empty-handed, only precious memories.

Next up on our list was "Mexico". Of course we went to the Mexican capital of Arizona, Ranch Market.


We had little money left, otherwise we would have purchased one of those amazing cakes.

Instead, we cruised over to the disgusting meat department to cross that off our list.

I took more pictures of the meat, but decided to spare everyone.

On our way home, we rented a movie to cross "show" off our list, and we still had 2 more items: games and firecrackers.

We had purchased some Roman Candles on the Indian Reservation in Nevada (thanks, David). We took it near the corn fields behind our house and shot them toward the street. I was so nervous for cops to show up. AND one of the candles cut loose and started launching its sparks at one of the houses. It was nuts.
So here were the only shots I could get:

We were getting too tired for the last thing on our list, "games". We'll just have to play Yahtzee another time... I guess we have an eternity to play.

Happy Anniversary William! It just keeps getting better.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

How to snack properly during a movie.

My opinion of the last Harry Potter movie?

I think June sums it up nicely:

I pretty much was smiling (and maybe some crying) the whole time. As soon as my brothers get their act together and finally see all these movies, I'll talk more about it.

I also discovered my favorite movie treat just last night.

Here are the directions:
1. Sneak large bag of Peanut M&M's, Peanut Butter M&M's, and Gummy Bears into the theater.
2. Bring refillable Harkins $1 Drink Cup and fill with Coke Zero
2. Buy Large popcorn
3. Get cardboard tray that holds drinks and popcorn
4. Go into theater and place drink in chair's cupholder
5. Dump popcorn into large section of tray.
6. Sprinkle both flavors of M&M's amongst popcorn (I didn't know M&M's eaten WITH popcorn tasted so good.)
7. Fill "cupholder" portion of tray with gummy bears.
8. Unintentionally eat everything on your tray during the previews, before the movie even begins.

I created this diagram in case I was unclear about anything:

How I came this far in life without having this treat while watching movies in a theater is beyond me.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Voyaging into the Realm of Nerds Part III

Remember that everyone is entitled to engage in one nerdy thing in their life, okay? I have 3 or 4, but who's counting?

I love good storytelling.

That's why I love movies like True Grit, Inception, The Dark Knight, The Little Mermaid, 3:10 to Yuma, Back to the Future, Star Wars, and so many more...

And that's why I love books like The Giver, Where the Red Fern Grows, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Road, The Lightning Thief, Matilda, etc.

Of all the stories I know, I think the story of Harry Potter is one of my favorites.

My good friends, The Andersens, share this love for Harry Potter. For the last 6 (or 7?) years now, they've thrown a party each time an HP book or movie came out. This party consisted of Hogwarts classes, eating food, games, book and movie excerpts, and some serious laughing. It wasn't until about 3 (or 4?) years ago that we actually started wearing costumes.

I'll never ever ever ever forget these amazing experiences.

Here are some pics from each of the costumed parties:

This is the 1st year we dressed up.

Starting from the top, going left to right: Mrs. Weasley, Rita Skeeter, Moaning Murtle, Professor Trelawny, Snape, Mad-Eye Moody (one of my favorite costumes of all time), and Ginny Weasley.

And this is me dreaming of marrying Harry someday.

Second year we dressed up:

Sirius Black, Death Eater, Luna Lovegood, Bellatrix Lestrange, Professor Umbridge, Tonks, Dobby, and Pavarti.

Here's my mug shot:

The 2nd year was a memorable year. We arranged a surprise visit from Voldemort (William in a black sheet and mask) to come and "duel" with everyone. (Basically an American Gladiator-styled game of jousting)

The third costume party, a few more people were added to the guest list:

Fred and George Weasley, Harry Potter, Hagrid, Nearly Headless Nick, Dumbledore, Fleur, Professor McGonagall, Centaur (My other favorite costume of all time)

I love this picture because I'm laughing so hard at Hagrid.

And here's our hero:

My sister-in-law, Marci, said she thought I looked like Janet Napalotono. Hillarious, BUT it pretty much scarred me for life (and unfortunetly not a lightning-shaped scarred for life).

The 3rd year was also a fun year because we prepared a video called "Life After Hogwarts".

And here's my other favorite picture, entitled "Harry Riding Centaur":

All the photos were taken by the A M A Z I N G Janet of JustmeJanet. (She's Mrs. Weasley, Dumbledore, and Umbridge) See more of the parties on her blog here and here.

With the 7th and last movie coming out this Friday, we did our last and final Potter Party last Thursday. Those photos will have to be posted later.

Until then, I'm going to enjoy this Butterbeer.