Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Roasted Summer Vegetables

One of the best things about Summer is the abundance of fresh produce that's in season. I know I have said this time and time again, but Summer cooking is just fresh and easy, which is the best way to cook in my opinion! I remember eating so much zucchini and summer squash when I was younger and although I never hated it, I never went crazy over it. Unless my mom breaded it in Italian bread crumbs! As I've gotten older, I've learned to LOVE these two vegetables.

This recipe is Pinterest inspired and oh so easy. I didn't even look at the original recipe and just kind of put it together myself. I found a lonely eggplant in the back of my refrigerator moments after I put the pan in the oven, but I think it would be a great addition! We had this on Sunday night with grilled chicken thighs and ice cold Blue Moon and called it dinner!

P.S. the leftovers are delicious.

Roasted Summer Vegetables

1-2 large zucchini, sliced thin
1-2 large Summer squash, sliced thin
1 large red onion, sliced thin
1-2 tomatoes, sliced
Olive oil for drizzling
Shredded parmesan for sprinkling
Salt and pepper, to taste

In a medium-large baking dish, spread the sliced onions. Toss with a little bit of olive oil. Line up sliced  vegetables in your baking dish, alternating the zucchini, squash and tomato. Drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. 

Bake for 25-30 minutes at 350 degrees. 

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Little Will- Two Months!

Prince William turned 2 months old on Friday and if I'm being honest, my heart ached a little. These little peanuts grow and change so fast and I'm trying my hardest to soak up each day and enjoy all of the special moments.

Will's second month was filled with milestones! At around 6 weeks, he started REALLY smiling at us! This moment made all of the sleepless nights more than worth it. He's smiling more and more each day- when he smiles with his whole face and his tiny scrunched up nose, it kills us! 

He's started to sleep longer at night and is getting a little bit more predictable. His tiny, newborn cries have gotten a bit louder and I think he's starting to discover that he has a voice! 

Speaking of crying, there is one thing that always calms him down. DANCING. He especially loves dancing with the lovies (Aunt Nat and Aunt Andi)! I think his perfect dance party playlist would include Get Lucky, Blurred Lines, Take Back the Night and Counting Stars. The little man has good taste in music ;) After all, it was a constant dance party when he was snuggled up in my belly. Especially when J. Timberlake was turned up loud.

One of the highlights of July was the meeting of the second generation lovies!!! My very best friend, Meghan, had a little boy in December and we patiently waited to see if Dylan would have a future wife or a future brother from another mother. We had the best time when the McConnells visited Charlotte. Will loves his Aunt MOD and Uncle S2H so much already and the baby boys are well on their way to becoming best friends! It's time for family vacations!

My dear friend Lauren also made a stop in Charlotte with her baby girl, Camilla! So many baby friends for the little mister.

The little one also took his first Kiawah Island vacation! Kiawah is my very favorite of the Carolina beaches and it's a special place for my family. It was so much fun to enjoy a family vacation this year with the newest lovie in tow! 

Will LOVED the beach. His sound machine plays waves at night when he goes to bed and I know he just loved a real life giant version of his favorite noise. He just cruised in his tent that we set up every day, fondly referred to by my dad as "Camp Will". 

This month, Will is especially loving his swing, his play mat, walks in the neighborhood and wearing STRIPES! When he's excited and happy, he wiggles and kicks all over the place. 

He's also starting to notice his giant red dog, Wrigley! He doesn't even mind when the doodle comes up to him and licks the entire side of his face. 

I just love this little boy so much. 

Happy two months, little one!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Home Management, Vol. 2

I'm an organization junkie. I prefer my to-do lists on paper with small boxes to check off and while I could use the calendar on my iPhone, I prefer to keep a paper planner. With everything color coded, of course! I shared my home management binder in this post and two years later, I'm still using my binder and adapting it to our changing needs. Now that I have the schedule of a tiny human to take into consideration, I'm finding that my home management binder is more necessary than ever before. Having everything in one place eliminates stacks of papers, piles of post-its and keeps my stream of consciousness in one place.

My creative friend Jen from The Polka Dot Posie recently designed her own planner and I absolutely love it! This week, she introduced some free printables for home management binders and they are beyond wonderful! My school days are long gone, but back to School season is always the beginning of the "planner year" for me and I always get the itch to get all of my ducks in a row. And since sharing is caring, I thought I would post the link today in case anyone else is interested. 

As soon as I hit publish on this post, I am printing some copies of my own. Check out The Polka Dot Posie to see how you can make their printable planner work for you!

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Little Will- One Month!

I can't believe my little Will is going to be TWO MONTHS old on Friday! Time is flying. And before he hits the two month milestone, I better post his one month pictures.

Will is the sweetest little boy and we are positively in love with him! His giant eyes have been so expressive since the moment he was born and we already know that he's going to be a little heartbreaker. In his first month, Will enjoyed lots of visitors welcoming him into the world! It was non-stop excitement around our house and I just know our baby could feel the love. 

For such a tiny guy, he's surprisingly been a pretty good sleeper from the very beginning. He's been sleeping soundly in his crib at night since the day we brought him home. There have been some tough nights for sure, but his tiny cries from across the hall in the middle of the night didn't take long before they didn't startle us anymore. 

This has been the craziest but best time in our lives and we look forward to each new day as parents- whatever they bring. Little Will, we love you to the moon and back! 

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Chopped Summer Salad + Grilled Shrimp

This salad made its way onto our dinner plates at the beginning of the Summer and little did I know what an easy and healthy staple meal this would quickly become! I think it has hit our dinner plates at least once every week as either a giant entre salad, or skipping the protein and eating it on the side. Inspired by all of the fresh goodness on the cover of the June, 2013 issue of Cooking Light, this salad is my favorite. In the summer, I love colorful, light  meals that use in-season produce and this salad fits the bill. The addition of grilled jumbo shrimp takes it over the top! I tossed the shrimp in some olive oil and Emeril's Essence and Mark threw them on skewers and then onto the grill.

Chopped Summer Salad + Grilled Shrimp
serves 4-6 as a main dish

2 heads romaine, chopped
2 large tomatoes, diced
2 avocados, diced
1/2 red onion, chopped 
4 ears of corn cut off the cob
8-10 strips of thick bacon, crumbled

Chop up all salad ingredients and place in a bowl. Toss with vinaigrette (recipe below) and top with grilled shrimp skewers. 


1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp. dijon mustard
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
salt and pepper to taste