Friday, February 25, 2011

"California Dreamin'..."

"... on such a winter's day." The Mamas and the Papas know what I'm talking about, more snow fell earlier today and I can't even remember what it was like to live in sunny Southern California. I had the joy of having some girls and their babies from church come over for lunch today and it wasn't until I was done making everything that I realized just how "summery" the menu was. I think I was sub-consciously missing warm, sunshiney days and was trying to bring some of it here, if not by weather, then by food!

Props to Ina Garten for her recipes; we had a wonderful time eating, talking, and spending time together; thanks for coming over girls, can't wait to hang out again!

The backyard. The winter hasn't been as bad as I thought it would be since snow is still somewhat of a novelty to me.

Cheddar Corn Chowder w/Bacon and Potatoes. Click here for recipe.

Panzanella. First time I made it - soooo good! Will definitely make again. Recipe here.

Strawberry angel food cake parfait

A nice light and delicious lunch! 

The gang

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Happy Birthday Monkey!

I can't believe that it was 1 year ago today that Jet was born. To our surprise, he arrived 4 weeks early yet still weighed in at a healthy 6lbs. 7.9ozs - he was ready to take on the world! Each day since then has been such a gift with our son and we cannot thank the Lord enough for this precious life that He has entrusted to us.

Jet Matthew Sylvester, we love the way you close your eyes when you yell, how you could eat practically a whole loaf of bread in one sitting, how independent and adventurous you are, how you love buckles and buttons, how your face lights up when we get you in the morning, we love how juicy your thighs are, we love how you kiss, we love your two teeth smile, we love your pudgy hands, we love how you squat to look for your toys underneath the couch, we love your joyful and fun-loving spirit; we could go on and on, there are too many things to enumerate but know that we delight in you and all your little ways and we feel so privileged to be your Mommy and Daddy.

Sweet Baby Boy, we love you beyond words and our desire for you is that you will grow up to know and embrace Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, may we as your parents be faithful teachers and  examples of Christ to you, living in such a way that will make you want to know and love Him above all else in this life.

Happy 1st Birthday Baby!

Just born

I can't even believe that he was ever that small!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

2nd Bday Party

Having two families on opposite coasts is working out quite well for the Monkey; having already celebrated his upcoming 1 year birthday with the Phan family in Washington, we celebrated again today with Team Canada. The place was teeming with adults and kids alike and we had a great time eating, talking, and laughing as we celebrated the joyous occasion of Monkey turning 1!

Pre-party breakfast, excited to par-tay!

We had a chili and baked potato bar; I highly recommend this menu for large group parties, this is when crockpots are truly your friend.

The spread

 Yellow cupcakes with buttercream frosting & sprinkles

I got this great idea for veggie dip cups from my Crafty Spice friend, Carly Brannon

 Decided to put the fruit into cups too; I really liked serving individual portions, makes it easy for people to help themselves, plus, they look so pretty this way!

Popcorn bar

 Gettin' the party started with Sarah & Karis Hales and Grandma Sylvester

 What better way to celebrate a 1st birthday than to eat a 1st cupcake?

 Jet was unsure about the cupcake at first, thinking it was something more to play with than eat. But then Matt stuck a piece of it into his mouth and it was over.

 I think he liked it:)

 Grandma love

 Present time!

 At one point during the opening of presents, I looked down amidst all the gifts and little kids and didn't see Jet. This Munchkin is so quick and stealthy, he had crawled underneath the table without anyone seeing him, I call him my "Houdini Baby."

I later found photographic evidence of his escape in progress 
(I have no idea what Matt and I are distracted by)

 Jet got lots of books - yay! - we love books.

 With Uncle Adam & Auntie Ive

We are so thankful for our little Monkey

 It's been a hard day's play. Party: success!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Last Night in B-ham

Well I can't believe our time here is practically over. What a blessing it was to spend time with my family and to relax and take a break from normal life. We will miss our loved ones here greatly but are so thankful for the time we had here. To finish off our holiday, I introduced Matt to my most favorite pizza place here in Bellingham, Cicchitti's, then we met up with some of my cousins for some good ol' hangout time at the local icecream shop, Mallard's. Bye Phan family, bye Bellingham, we love you and will miss you!

Cicchitti's Pizza: I've been eating this pizza since high school - my most fave: a cheese slice, thin and crispy, just like it should be!

Mallard's Icecream


Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Jet's 1st Haircut

When Jet was born, one of the things that caught me and Matt by surprise was the amount of hair he had. I never had heartburn or any other symptoms that people say is typically associated with a baby who has a lot of hair so we were quite humored when he popped out with a full mop.  Ever since then, it's only grown more and more and is one of his physical features that people always comment on (it's probably one of the major reasons why strangers always think he's a girl:) He technically got his hair cut for the first time a couple months ago when I trimmed his bangs since they were getting so long but in terms of a real hair cut, this was it and it was a bit sad when we had my hairdresser aunt cut his hair last night; we knew it had to be done (his view was getting obstructed) but we really liked his long hair and thought it was so cute and it was hair he's had since he was born but we realize that this is just one of the many joys and pains of parenting: letting him grow up.

Some before shots

He did a good job sitting still

This isn't even all of it - he had so much hair!


 Our handsome little man

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Avenue Bread

The older I get, the more I appreciate this town that I grew up in. Granted, it's evolved quite a bit since I lived here, but there are just so many great local establishments around here, which lends itself to having a unique culture and strong sense of community. Matt and I ventured out to a place down in Fairhaven earlier today called Avenue Bread; this place makes their own bread and pastries and tries to use local and organic products as much as possible. It was SOOOO good and if you're ever in the area, I highly recommend it. In fact, if you're ever visiting the Seattle area, plan on driving up to Vancouver B.C., and stop in Bellingham on the way; this town is worth checking out.

Their coffee was so good! The free refills was an added bonus.

Matt's order: The El Nino: tuna tossed with balsamic vinegar, with lettuce, tomato, and provolone on sour dough. He loved it.

You can't see it but I'm eyeing their bread case where you can buy freshly baked loaves and rolls everyday.

 My order: The Avenue Club: turkey, ham, bacon, with cheddar cheese, red onion, lettuce, tomato, mayo, and dijon mustard on toasted sour dough - just look at this sandwich, don't you want to just take a big bite? It was absolutely delicious!