Saturday, November 20, 2010

Just Waiting...

So, we're still waiting for Baby Girl's arrival!  I was having so many contractions last week that I was sure she was going to make an early debut.  However, the last few days have been very quiet, and I've felt very energetic.  Now, I'm thinking maybe this is going to be a late baby!  Our due date isn't until November 24, so we still may have an on-time arrival.

Two weeks ago, my friend Vangie paid a visit and brought me these adorable baby booties and hat.  She knit them herself.  The booties are so cute, they almost makes me want to learn to knit, but I'm not sure if I have the patience for it.

In other news, my parents are in town! It has been so much fun to have them here.
Mom has been spending most of her free time feeling my belly and trying to get the baby to kick.
Dad has been working hard keeping up with things at the office and eating cookies.  Lots of cookies.

While John has been working, I've enjoyed spending time with my parents and going on walks.  The weather has definitely turned colder, and I'm thrilled that I can still zip up my winter coat!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Deep (and I mean DEEEEP) Dish Quiche

Last night we hosted our home fellowship group for Bible study and prayer.  I decided I wanted to make something a little different for our snack/dinner meal.  Several months ago my mom had given me a recipe for a "makes-its-own-crust" quiche, and I decided to give it a try.  I've always been intimidated by making my own pie crust, so I thought this recipe would be an easy alternative

About half-way through the baking process I was shocked to see this in my oven:

This photo doesn't capture the quiche's true size, but this quiche is at least 3.5" deep!  I quickly called my mom and asked her if she had indeed made her recipe in a 9x13" pan.  She responded, "Well, maybe I split the mixture between 2 pans..."  Our guests definitely had a good laugh when they saw the massive quiche. It was delicious and I'll be making it again... but in 2 pans in stead of 1!

In case you're interested, I've posted my mom's recipe below.

Egg Mixture Ingredients:
12 eggs
1 ½ cup all purpose flour  
1.5 tsp teaspoon baking powder
1.5 or so teaspoon salt
1 pinch cayenne pepper
1 quart half and half (next time I may just use milk)

Filling Ingredients:
Chopped sautéed onion, sauteed in  3 tablespoons butter.
1 lb pork sausage, browned and drained of grease (next time I'm going to try ham or bacon)
1.5 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 package chopped frozen spinach, defrosted and drained

Use mixer to beat eggs and flour, add the other Egg Mixture Ingredients and stir until blended. Taste to make sure not too salty. Yes, take a taste of the egg mixture.

Distributute onions, sausage, spinach and cheese etc in bottom of a greased pan (1 very DEEP 9x13" pan or 3 8" square pans). Pour egg mixture over top.

Bake at 400°F for 30 – 35 minutes (longer for deep dish version), or until the top is nice and brown and the center of the quiche does not wobble too much. Do not overbake. Top with extra cheese to make it more attractive before serving.

Allow quiche to rest for 5 – 10 minutes before cutting to serve. 

Friday, October 22, 2010

Journey to New Jersey

Last Saturday, John and I were invited to a friend's birthday party in New Jersey, about an hour's drive from Manhattan.  We decided to make a day of it!  We met up with another couple from church, rented a zipcar, drove out to New Jersey, went apple picking, attended the birthday party, and topped the day off with a trip to the grocery store (yay for "cheap" groceries in New Jersey!).

It was a perfect, sunny fall day.  The scenery was gorgeous.  I can't tell you how strange it was for us to be on a rolling country road, just an hour away from our apartment!

We took our time wandering the rows of the apple orchard.  There were so many different apple varieties: Jonamac, Jonagold, Red Delicious, Granny Smith, Cameo, Gala, Yellow Delicious, Winesap...  I think we picked a few of each type!

At one point, John stopped to do a little "research" on his phone.

John and I had a competition to see who could find the biggest apple.  John won, but only because he's taller and can reach where no one else can.

The orchard had a little outdoor market, where we bought acorn squash and fresh apple cider.

Our harvest!

After our apple picking adventure, we continued down the road to our friends' house.  We had a lovely afternoon/evening with our friends.  We had about 8 different types of barbecued meat for dinner!  I wish I would have taken more photos at the party, but I only snagged this one of our little friend.

Friday, October 15, 2010

First Anniversary

On Sunday, John and I celebrated our first anniversary!  It was a gorgeous fall day, sunny and warm, but with a refreshing crispness in the air.  After attending our church's service on the Upper East Side, we walked to Central Park to visit "The Bench."  The Bench sits just inside the entrance to Central Park, near 82nd Street.  The Bench is where John asked me if I would be interested in "pursuing a long distance relationship moving towards a short distance relationship."  Little did we know just how quickly the distance between us would be reduced!

After reminiscing at The Bench, we walked through Central Park to the Upper West Side and enjoyed a delicious Italian lunch.  John and I normally don't eat Italian (not sure why), but we thoroughly enjoyed our meal at Celeste, so much that we're already planning to go back!  If you come visit us and want a nice Italian meal, we'll take you there!  We shared a spinach and walnut salad, authentic Italian wood fired pizza, and the most amazing ravioli I've ever had (spinach, ricotta, and sage butter). We were incredibly full...

But not too full for Beard Papa's! Beard Papa's is a Japanese franchise specializing in cream puffs and mochi (frozen bites of ice cream).

This is me eating a blueberry mochi.

This is John eating a chocolate cream puff.

The cream puff before we got a hold of it!

 To cap off a wonderful day, I received these beautiful flowers from my husband!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The Change 1 Year Brings!

It's hard to believe that just one year ago, John and I were newlyweds!

The past year has been the most wonderful, memory-filled year of my life. It has also been a year of incredible change...

We never would have imagined that just a year after our marriage we would be eagerly anticipating the arrival of our new "roommate"...


assembling a stroller and car seat...

and practicing our baby-holding skills! 

Special thanks to our friends who let John and I hold their twin babies each Sunday at church.  Baby Olivia was particularly interested in John this past Sunday.  She couldn't stop staring at him!  I feel the same way myself :)

I marvel at God's goodness in bringing John and me together, in giving us a joyful first year of marriage and blessing us with a baby girl due in just 6 weeks!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Another Family Dinner!

On Friday night John and I hosted a family dinner.  We continued our Greek dinner theme with steak gyros, couscous salad, Greek salad, and tzatziki sauce.

John's cousin Linda came in from Brooklyn, and Christy and Adrienne joined us as well.  What fun to have all  our "local" family members together!
For dessert, Adrienne brought carrot cake from Whole Foods.  Being a carrot cake lover, I was slightly dubious of her store bought version.  However, it may have been the best carrot cake I've ever had!  It had a really nice spice flavor.  Definitely as good (if not better) than homemade!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Dinner with Christy and Apartment Tour

On Tuesday night John and I enjoyed an amazing dinner at Christy's apartment.  Having a sister-in-law in NY is a blessing, but a sister-in-law who cooks for you??!!  Unbelievable!

Christy moved to NY just over a month ago, and her apartment is adorable.  Here are a few shots of our excellent chef.

Christy prepared a fantastic Greek feast for us.  We walked in to see this beautiful table setting.  She also had Greek music playing in the background.

View of living room, looking to the left.

View of living room, looking to the right.

We enjoyed orzo, moussaka (a Greek dish with eggplant), and spanakopita (Greek pastry stuffed with spinach and feta cheese).

Authentic Greek salad with olives and feta cheese.

After dinner John set up Christy's new television and wireless internet router.  I lounged on the couch in a Greek food coma.  

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A Dangerous Combination

What happens when you give a pregnant woman a free subscription to Amazon Prime (free 2 day shipping on anything)?

Yes, yours truly ordered 12 bags of Chipotle Cheese Rice & Bean Chips from Amazon.  I'm embarrassed to admit how excited I got when the package arrived.  In my defense, these chips are truly delicious!  I first tried them when visiting my parents this summer.  Unfortunately, the chips are not available ANYWHERE in the metro NY area.  Thank goodness for Amazon!