Showing posts from April, 2016

favorite recipes

Here's my recipe rundown for April! Except the weather is really confusing me. I wanted to try an iced hot chocolate recipe yesterday, but instead, I made hot hot chocolate because it was damp and cold. My girls told me the house smelled like Christmas.

I made a bunch of our favorite staples for dinner this past month, and the new recipes I did try weren't impressive enough to share. So I don't have new main dish recipes to share with you today. So here's what we ate for dinner this past month if you need some inspiration: honey chipotle chicken bowls - chicken and black bean enchilada casserole - fattoush salad (grilled za'atar chicken thighshomemade rustic pita bread) - BBQ chicken quinoa salad - southwestern brown rice bowl - chipotle chicken fajita rice bowl

I may have made too many bowls in April. Anyway, here's what I do have to share. The photos belong to the respective bloggers as identified below each image. Oh wait: I think they all belong to Simply…

a Frozen Fever birthday

Not to be confused with Lydia's Frozen birthday party, Anna requested a Frozen Fever birthday party. So on Tuesday - when Lydia had no school due to primary elections here in Pennsylvania - we decorated the pavilion at our favorite Branchwood Park for Anna's birthday party. We looked to Anna's (the princess, not my daughter) dress from Frozen Fever for our inspired color palette and sunflower decor.

Lydia says to tell you they looked more like sunflowers when they weren't squished on one plate.

Here's our birthday girl!

Sometimes Anna wore the Frozen Fever dress.

When two of your friends also have four kids each, a three person invitation goes a long way for party guests.

It rained for fifteen minutes, just as the weather predicted, so after eating during the rain shower, the grounds crew went out with towels to dry off the playground. (They took their work very seriously.)

A post-nursing baby shot. (Not my baby. But still: swoon.)

High demand for the baby swings.

Ataulfo mangos

We are over halfway into our third case of these beauties.

Apparently, Whole Foods is one of the few grocery stores to sell champagne mangos (or Ataulfo mangos) consistently when they're in season. Sometimes I can find them at Trader Joe's or ShopRite or Giant or even Costco, but at this time of year, I can always find them by the case - and on sale! - at Whole Foods. I don't regularly frequent Whole Foods since I'm no longer only blocks away from one, but there is one across the street (ahem - going through a traffic light that crosses over six lanes of route 309 traffic) from my Trader Joe's. So during mango season, we make the pitstop. On sale, they're $1 a piece, or a case is $14.99. I'm not exactly sure how many are supposed to be in a case, but I pile 20+ (however many fit without looking ridiculous).

What do we do with all these mangos? We eat them. I chop them and mix them with fresh strawberries and frozen blueberries for a fruit salad to accompany…

Jesse's baptism

As we have finally joined a church since our move in 2014, we also finally had Jesse baptized on Sunday!

Jesse supplied his signature pouty lip.

In looking back at the girls' baptisms, I realized that the baptisms associate to different homes for us. We brought both Lydia and Heidi home from the hospital to Darien Street, and they were both baptized when our church was meeting in its South Philadelphia location. Anna was born when we lived on 13th Street, and she was baptized after the church moved to its Center City location. Jesse was brought home from the hospital to our home out here and was also baptized at our new church here.

I posted this when I shared Lydia's and Heidi's and Anna's baptism, so for continuity's sake, I'm posting it once again here for me. I love what baptism represents - the sign and seal of the covenant God made with Abraham - an unconditional covenant of blessing and redemption. God's grace and mercy through salvation are gifts ex…

more birthday fun

guest blogger: Anna

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On Thursday, this box came in the mail from my cousins - for Anna Gobanna!

On Friday night, we went to Brother's Pizza for my birthday dinner with Big Guy and Nonna.

Hello, turtles!

Big Guy and Nonna gave me a present.

Jesse loves my Frozen Fever Anna doll.

We match!

My Anna doll watched me eat an ice cream cone.

In my birthday dress on my birthday swing.

another creek

We met up with Julia and Geneva at a park yesterday.

Whenever Jesse tripped, he brought these two down with him.

In spite of the tripping, we managed to make it down to the creek for some good old fashioned rock throwing.

Somehow we even managed to keep the toddlers out of the water - for the most part anyway.

birthday festivities

Anna's birthday celebration started Tuesday night when Pop-Pop and Nana hung out with us.

Anna now has her own big girl swing for the swing set.

On Wednesday morning, we broke out the birthday hats.


It wouldn't be an Anna birthday without her silly faces.

In the afternoon, we donned our bathing suits and headed to our favorite place (Branchwood Park) to romp in the creek.

Uncle Derek stopped by with some birthday animal crackers from The Old Dutch Cupboard.

Before dinner, we opened presents.

Anna regularly steals my pillow, so we gave her one all her own.

(Shoot. Maybe someone else wants one, too.)

Dinner time! Tuna noodle casserole, fruit salad, and edamame.

Cake balls for dessert.