Sunday, May 31, 2009

these are times of danger and uncertainty

but all I see is hope, optimism and YOU. congratulations on a job well done. we are so proud of you. proud of your perseverance, proud of your work ethic, proud of your dedication. proud of how you fit everything into your life, your schooling, your dedication to your job, your vacation passion, your caring, your kindness, your friends, your family, you have navigated everything successfully. may your future bring you the happiness and the insight your have brought to me. always follow your heart. as abbey denaro (student speaker) said “even on this celebratory day you can't ignore the challenge of rebuilding our economy, she compared the journey the class has taken to the merrimack river she talked about the flow of water past the rocks in it’s path with it’s destination of the open and free atlantic. we now go full steam ahead to that open expanse.” i know you know better than most the path of the merrimack river, the rocks, and the detours it has shown you, the challenges you have had to deal with, the awareness much too young of some of life’s most difficult roads and of how precious and fleeting life can be. but you have taken that knowledge and used it to your betterment. you certainly know how sometimes there really are no answers and sometimes you just have to accept things and move on. this day know that you just might change the world. to the world you might be one person but to one person, you might just be the world. challenge and embrace the unknown, continue to learn. your most important revelations will be when you least expect them - go ahead, be bold, be unafraid, live the life you imagine.

I love you , mom xox

Thursday, May 28, 2009

bring it on

i know that memorial day is not officially the beginning of summer but i am going along as if it is. it's time for picnics,salads, ice cream cones, lazy days and moonlit nights. even tho it's been raining for 3 days i am being optimistic. i found this salad recipe and had to share it. doesn’t it look beautiful? it is going in my recipe file and might just be made every week throughout the summer.

i found this lovely mizuna and baby greens at whole foods but you can make this salad with any greens. something with a bite is nice; arugula, watercress , etc.
potatoes: always start potatoes in cold water when boiling. it helps them to cook evenly. purple potato skin tends to be a little bitter. i left it on but if you'd like to take it off, after they've finished cooking, peel the skin off with a paring knife. it should come off pretty easily. make sure you do it while they are still warm so they can soak up the dressing.
mushrooms: always clean mushrooms by brushing with a damp paper or kitchen towel. don't rinse under water. they will be rubbery after cooking.

farmers market salad
for 4

4 cups of mixed baby greens
2 cups mizuna (Japanese Mustard Green)
1 bunch spring onions- white part only
12-15 shitake mushrooms
1/2 lb baby purple potatoes
1 lemon
a good hunk of pecorino
lemon dijon vinaigrette- see recipe below

boil potatoes until just fork tender. cut in half while they are still warm and toss with 2-3 tbl of the vinaigrette. set aside.
sut the roots off of the onions but leave the core in tact. you want the onions to hold while roasting. cut the stems off of the mushrooms. toss the onions and mushrooms with some olive oil and kosher salt. roast on a baking sheet (onions should be cut side down) at 350 degrees for 15-20 min.
in the meantime, coat a pan with a little olive oil. cut lemons into thin slices, removing any seeds. sauté on medium heat, 3-4 minutes per side until caramelized.
toss all of the greens with a little dressing and pile on plate. scatter dressed potatoes, onions and shitakes, and caramelized lemons. shave some pecorino over the top.
finish with a little extra dressing if desired.

lemon dijon vinaigrette
1/2 shallot- finely diced
juice of half of a lemon
2 tbl good Dijon mustard
1/2 c good olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

whisk shallot, mustard and lemon juice together. slowly stream in olive oil, whisking constantly.
finish with salt and pepper.
you can also do this in a blender. this will keep for 4-5 days in the fridge.

serve with great crusty bread- oh and yes some nice wine. enjoy!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

goes by much to fast...

lynne, as always, there is never more fun. i miss you already. fun weekend. lots of laughs. cosmos. walks. friends. pools. kids. naps. games. barbecues. firepits. movies. and the tabu challenge is on......

Friday, May 22, 2009

happy memorial day weekend...

hope your weekend
consists of

green grass and sunny skies.
barbecues and cold drinks.
a trip to the beach.
sunshine and sunscreen.
picnics and yummy food.
parades and a shoulder to sit on.
ice cream and summer love.
tree climbing (no matter what your age)

do all the things you love to do......


Thursday, May 21, 2009

are you kidding?

bring this guy to my kitchen pronto.... and i will be forever happy.

Rather than try to recap myself, I’ll letPastor Ryan tell it:

This is the basic gist of it.
20 oz. of bread flour (all purpose is okay, too) - about 4 cups.
8 oz. of water (or 1 cup.)
4 oz. melted butter with chopped herbs of choice. We had chives. Rosemary or Thyme would work really well.
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon active or instant yeast. (if active, it would be best to sprinkle yeast over the water to let it start to work before mixing it in)
He combined these ingredients all together in the KitchenAid stand mixer with the dough hook (it can be done by hand…it just takes longer).
He mixed them together for about 10 minutes or so until he could successfully achieve a windowpane with the dough. This is where you can pull off a small chunk of the dough you’re kneading and stretch it gently to see if it is somewhat translucent. If you can do this without it tearing, it’s ready.
Once this elasticity has been achieved, the dough can sit out with plastic wrap over it for 1-4 hours to double in size. After it’s gotten bigger, it should be kneaded for a minute or two so that the yeast can redistribute.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees

Cut a large ‘X’ into the surface of the bread dough so it can bloom!

Bake inside a covered cast iron pan after coating the rounded dough with olive oil and sprinkling with kosher salt. Bake for 30 minutes with the lid on, then remove lid to finish it off for another 15 to 30 minutes.
If you like to use a thermometers, we’re looking for an internal temp. of around 200-210 degrees. (The bread can get brown on the bottom if it’s too close to the heating element; if that happens, just slice it off with a sharp knife.
and voila !


Wednesday, May 20, 2009

and the beat goes on...

this is a follow up from yesterday's post. when i called my parents to wish them a happy anniversary they were not home then at 9pm they still were NOT home. i thought seniors go to dinner at 3-4pm. nope. not them. they were probably whopping it up down at the town center taking pictures of eachother. if they weren't a plane ride away i would have gone over to take them out to dinner and make sure they were in at a reasonable time. dinner will have to wait until our visit.
i thought you would like to see the happy couple today. well a couple of months ago, they don't dress up like this everyday. remember i told you earlier about dad - white socks and sneakers.
didn't they hold up really well?

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

all you need is love....

Once upon a time a long, long, time ago… 2 people fell in love and got married. on that beautiful may day many, many, years ago people wished them the best of all worlds.
they started their life together as every married couple does planning for the best. home was set up, a baby was born, then another baby was born, then another home was set up, then 2 more babies were born then another and another. lots of roads were traveled, journeys were taken, detours were felt. there were lots of changes from the original plans. sometimes you just can’t plan for things. with every passing year another anniversary was celebrated, some better than others. truth be told - some years they liked each other, and some years they didn’t, but they always loved each other. the brood of children brought happy times and sad times, trials, and fun times. just about enough equal amounts of each to even things out. the years flew by faster and faster, children were married, moves happened, more babies came along, then the babies had babies. all of a sudden sixty three years had passed - so i guess today we can say that their love has stood the test of time….

63 years together… longer than some lifetimes.

Happy Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad ! i love you .

“And if you live to be a hundred I want to be a hundred
minus one day so I never have to live without you” AA Milne

Monday, May 18, 2009

and the celebrations continue...

today my dad is 85

who he is...
an engineer
caring & loving
smartest man i know
bluest eyes you have ever seen
big & gentle
family first
looks out for mom
gives great hugs
loves irish music and his irish heritage
loves those boston sports teams - especially the red sox
reads the paper back to back
likes the comics
books books & and more books
fixer of everything
dad, grandpa, great grandpa
proud of his children
the crossword puzzle king
has an infectious laugh
rolls his eyes when he takes a bite (stephen do your imitation)
never saw him loose his temper - ever
loves roasted peanuts
you know he loves you
he is patient
he shares his birthday with two grandchildren
doesn't mind my run on sentences and no capitals in my blog
spelling fanatic
math whiz
isn't into fashion
his shirts must have pockets
white socks and sneakers
always looking to improve his golf game
humble so very, very, humble....

our one & only wouldn't trade for anything !
he is amazing just ask any one of his children.

Grandpa & Michaela

i love you dad !!! xox

baby baby...

the years are rushing by... happy happy birthday to michaela xoxo we love you - please slow the years down i want this back....

but then i wouldn't have this....

and this....

i love you, mom xoxo

Friday, May 15, 2009

happy birthday love...

like the sign says you have reached the limit - so from now on we count backwards......

wishing you a spectacular year ahead filled with everything you deserve... today we celebrate you and all that you are. i think you can tell by our answering machine just how people feel about you... it speaks volumes. love you xox

i also want to send out BIG birthday wishes to the other members of our family. happy happy birthday to elaine, marc and toni - yup, its's brthday extravaganza around here. xox hope you are having a fabulous day filled with all good things. oops almost forgot also a very happy 5th anniversary to jill and steve and michael and toni.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

perfume... intoxicating

scent - is a intricate part of our existence, it can evoke memories that we didn't even know we had. this ad is so romantic. unfortunately, i can't say i really like this perfume but i adore this ad. it is an amazing piece of marketing. click to fall in love

Sunday, May 10, 2009


turned into today but i am still on time. of course i had planned to write a post about my mom for mother's day. those who are closest to us play a significant role in the lives we lead. on this journey i have been lucky enough to have the best mom in this whole world. she taught me so many things, what it felt like to be hugged and kissed, to belong, to be strong, to have faith to take chances, to forgive, to be kind, to give back. no matter how old a mother is, she still watches her middle aged children for signs of improvement. a child with a loving mother has a best friend and a devoted follower for life. i learned the most precious things from a woman who thought for so many years she wasn't book smart enough to teach us all that we would need to know. she possesses a multitude of talents that could not be learned in any school, she taught life lessons that are far more important than you could find in any class room. her spirit and zest for life is contagious she touches everyone shes meets and always has a kind word to say, she can always reach out and find the best in everyone. her love has made an impact on all who have had the privilege of calling her mom. she is our personal angel, our biggest fan and our cherished best friend. she has been the greatest example of leading the way for our family in all good things.
mom, there really aren't' words significant enough to thank you for all you have done for us over the years. all that you have done, all that you have sacrificed, all that you have taught us, far too many things to list here. you taught me everything i need to know about being a good mom all through your example. you taught me about choosing happiness even when it's not easy. you taught me to love unconditionally and how to fully accept people without judging, how to have faith in god no matter what. you showed me how to be kind and patient and gentle. you taught me how to create a fulfilling life. how could you ever thank someone for that? i learned as i got older that motherhood is the most challenging thing i have ever done but we are also rewarded with profound joy, pure and intense emotion, infinite depts of love, and some unbelievable hilarious moments. so mom on this day i want to say - thank you - thank you from the bottom of my heart for all that you are and all that you have helped me to be.

happy happy mother's day!! i love you mom xo

Friday, May 8, 2009

my best friend... the mom of 10!

do you lie in bed at night with thoughts swirling through your head of all the things you need to do, bills to pay, people to call, work to finish, things to blog about, etc etc.? well I do and then i am to tired to drag this body back out of bed to write these things down. then magically - poof - in the morning it’s all vanished - yup – gone. until the next night when it starts again only new thoughts to think about and so it goes. sometimes i might remember a thought or two but not often. last night was about the mother's day post i plan to write about my mom who is... well….. I am saving that for tomorrow - look at that I am planning ahead. those of you who really know me know that planning ahead is not my thing.
so tomorrow look for the post on MY mom

today i want to write about my friend who is the mother of all mothers. i am not kidding - you know who you are, everyone knows who you are, the baby maker, bottle fixer, tear wiper, taxi driver, deal sealer, all the things all mothers are x 10. yup that’s right 10! last year on april fools day she delivered her 10th baby (you read it right) 10 uteran tenants. the nurse on duty that day walked into her room and said "this chart says this is your 10th baby" my colleagues are so funny the nurse chirps, nice april fools joke – no, really, my friend says, in her sweet voice ( a voice that couldn’t possibly be raising 10 children) it really is my 10th. i am certain this nurse is still talking about this and will be for a long time to come. my first introduction to this wonder woman was one day many years ago on - what else? a school field trip. at that time, with her camera in hand i asked; is this your first? when she replied no it's my 4th, i nearly fell over - since that day and in the years that have ensued she has amazed me over and over. recently i received a picture of baby #10's first birthday party, the table was decorated , the cake and intricate details appeared to be that of an only child. did i say she is amazing?
when she announced a few years ago that the family was packing up and moving a 4 hour plane ride away - i cried. please, please don’t go, it will never be the same without you – and it isn’t. thankfully for the internet we get to chat lots of times a week. in any case, i have never met a person that could ever pull off this feat and look as good as she looks and do all the things she does. she remembers everything from your birthday to your families accomplishments, the anniversary of a sad event and everything in between. she makes all the people in her life feel so important.. .. i miss her every day. so today my wish for you my friend is to be made to feel important. i wish you few domestic chores, some time to relax and enjoy the people you love the most.
Happy Happy Mother’s Day! xo

Thursday, May 7, 2009


could you do this? i am not sure i could do this. i mean i know i could do it. but not sure i would like it. maybe i would find tho that i loved it and never wanted to use the computer again = highly unlikely. i get way to much motivation and inspiration here about a whole number of things. i definitely could forget the t.v. ummmm well except for tonight when greys anatomy promises to be worth watching. ok well i am thinking about it.. but as you can see i am leaning in the no direction.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

rain rain go away...

i am easliy won over by a little sunshine so looking at my pictures from aruba makes me really happy. it seems like it's been raining for days. okay it has been raining for days but you have to admit the grass and tress look absolutely gorgeous. and with the damp weather you might try to make this you will love it. although you don't need damp weather it just seems like a damp weather meal. comfort food.

its simple and delish

1 big glass jar of great northern beans or a can will do
Pound and a half of cooked and shredded chicken buy the cooked chicken and shred it)
24 ounces chunky salsa
6 oz can green chile or you can use really hot jalepenos
3 cups chicken broth (2 cans)
16 oz shredded cheese
2 tablespoons cumin (i skipped this)
cook in a crock pot on low all day!

serve with tortilla chips, extra cheese + enjoy!