Thursday, August 27, 2015

Conor, Caden, and Callie...again!

First off -- Happy (Belated) National Dog Day to my Zeta!! Even though you jumped on Caden and knocked him over yesterday, we still love you.

Jim and I had a few special visitors this weekend - my cousin Jen, her husband Nick and their two kids, Patrick and Callie, as well as my Uncle/Godfather John (my Dad's brother and Jen's Dad). They were on their way to my cousin John's hockey game and came by our place beforehand. 

We tried having all the kids do "touchdown" but Patrick was the only one who pulled it off. Good job Patrick!

Patrick and Callie were "so excited" haha look at Cal. Love this pic.

Then we all had a goldfish party....

Conor and Caden LOVED eating Callie's goldfish off the floor. Haha they were in heaven. Callie is wondering what is happening to all her goldfish.

Here's a serious #tbt to my Uncle John (top, center) and my Dad (on the right) with their siblings at what I am assuming is their house in Waltham.

After that, Auntie Theresa came over on Monday and we walked Horn Pond in Woburn. We took the boys out of the stroller and let them walk around. They loved it. Clearly it was an impromptu outing because we didn't have our shoes...

All for now. Until next time...


P.S. Another #tbt video for you. Let's see if this works.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

August - New Phelan Things!

I know I keep talking about it, but we love our new house. The space is wonderful, the newness is fantastic, our neighbors are friendly (and have 5 children!) and we love hosting -- so it's the perfect house for us. We are hoping to have our housewarming party sometime this fall. My sister suggested we do a "fall themed" party housewarming. So stay tuned.

Here's Conor and Caden playing on the neighbor's swingset. We also had the boys on the trampoline and boy was that hilarious. The neighbor's have a Connor  too (with two "Ns") and he's 2 years old! I feel like they will all be good friends when they are in school together.

Conor eating his breakfast on Saturday morning..on our old kitchen table. We just bought a new one at Jordan's Furniture over the weekend. Check it out below!

And Caden eating his breakfast...I thought this picture was HILARIOUS. Look at their faces!! Haha

Daddy bought a new lawnmower and used it for the first time this weekend. The lawn really needed to be cut and it looks great.

The boys loved watching him. They were amazed.

Here's the new table! We bought it with two end chairs, two middle chairs and a long bench. We also purchased a couple extra chairs so we don't always have to use the bench. We'll see if we dig that idea.

And another view... We still need to put together four more chairs and the bench that goes along the side. I'll post another pic when it's done.

I put some dried hydrangeas from the front yard in my living room and bathroom. My Aunt Joyce always dries out her hydrangeas and I love them. I've always said that I wanted to do it too. Plus, I think it's such a nice, easy (and free!) decoration. I did some research on how to dry them out and remove the bugs.  It's pretty simple.

Now I am going to indulge in some french toast with the boys! That's what Sundays are for, right? Happy lazy Sunday everyone. ;)

Shaz, C and C

Friday, August 21, 2015

First Dinner Party!

I had my first dinner party last night and wanted to make everyone something fresh and "in season" for dinner. Nothing fact, the recipes were all quite simple.  

Here are my guests! Shay loved the veggies, Caden loved the hummus, and Conor loved the crackers. Kyle and Jim loved the beer and wine. ;) 

My goal was to stick with the theme of "light & fresh" when it came to the spread. I figured it's summer and that's what you should do...right? Most of our items originated from either our garden or my mom's friends' garden, and then we picked up a few staples at Whole Foods and Wegmans. 
  • Cranberry block cheese, sharp cheddar cheese, & grapes served with a variety of crackers. 

  • Homemade spinach/kale/artichoke dip served with warmed naan bread.  

  • Lemon & pine nut hummus served with sliced cucumbers and yellow bell peppers. 

  • Caprese salad with slices of the world's freshest tomatoes and basil. Yum! ;) 

  • Roasted summer squash, zucchini, brussels sprouts and asparagus with grilled BBQ marinated chicken. 

  • Peach and plum pie served with whipped cream -- paired with moscato wine.

To give you some background, my mom brought over a bunch of fresh tiny peaches and plums from a coworkers garden. Conor and Caden weren't devouring them like they usually do with store-bought peaches and plums (sadly), so they were getting real ripe, real fast. 

While searching for fun desserts to make with fresh in-season fruits, I found this peach and plum pie recipeThe author writes, "As peaches recede at the end of the summer season and plums come on strong as we inch towards fall, this pie was designed to bridge the seasonal gap. The two flavors compliment each other perfectly, and make the most of the last of the peaches." I thought it was perfect.

So bam - I made a peach and plum pie on a whole wheat crust; and paired it with this moscato dessert wine from the Andretti Vineyard in Napa.  

2014 Villa Andretti Moscato - 750ml

Pie Ingredients:
  • 2 wheat pie crusts - 1 chilled in a pie plate, the other rolled out flat 
  • 7 little yellow and magenta plums cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 3 peaches, with the skins removed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 5 tablespoons cornstarch 
  • 1 egg
  • 1 lemon

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Dice up the peaches and plums (I removed the skin of the peaches only) into 1.5 inch pieces. In a separate bowl, mix together the sugar and cornstarch. Then coat the fruit with the mixture. Do not over-mix it into mush. 

Below are the diced yellow and red plums. Look at those bright colors!

Pour the mixture into the chilled pie crust and before placing the other on top, zest a little bit of a lemon. I feel it accentuates the flavors. 

Then place the second pie crust on top, pinching the edges together. Make about 4 slices in the top/center. Brush egg wash on top to brown it.

Place the pie onto a baking sheet to catch any drippings and put it in the oven. Bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees. Then rotate it, reduce the heat to 325 and bake for another 25 minutes. Let it sit and serve with whipped cream or ice cream. Or if you're like us, serve it with some sweet dessert wine. ;)



PS Flashback Friday pic! Wine tasting with my besties out in CA in 2011. I miss you all so much.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Concerts, Cleaning, Caden, & Conor.....

What a whirlwind life has been lately. We have done so much with the house these last few weeks -- from cleaning surfaces and rugs, installing blinds, laying out furniture to my Dad painting two whole bedrooms upstairs. The place is really coming together. Oh, and on top of all that, Jim and I are working full time and raising two happy little toddlers. It's been a breeze. ;)

To recap, I went to see Zac Brown Band at FENWAY on Saturday night with my cousin Jessica. She is on air at 101.7 The Bull - Boston's new hit country station during the day. We went to the ZBB "eat and greet" where the whole band served us dinner during the open bar. I mean -- seriously???? So cool. Then we had the most amazing floor seats. I felt like we were steps in front of Zac. Oh, and I was able to see my friend Abby!! She was sitting in the section right next to us. We were A3, Row 15 and she was A4, Row funny!

My phone died shortly into the concert, but here's a few favs from the ZBB concert (& dinner!)...

Miss Jackie came to visit us on Monday....what a fun day! The boys were SO excited to see her. They were a little cautious at first, but I swear as soon as she opened her mouth - the boys knew they knew her. It was so cute seeing them together again! Thanks for the fun visit.

 Here are a few fuzzy Sunday morning wake-up pics. They make me smile -- so here you go. :)


And I mean - who doesn't have dinner with Daniel Tiger these days?? I must say, the boys have been doing great in their high chairs. A few weeks/months ago, all they did was fuss and stand up and throw tantrums when we put them in there, so I opted to feed them in the backyard or the den. But now, they are doing good! And when Daniel is having dinner with us, I feel like everyone is on their best behavior. ;)

Daddio getting the boys ready for "school" this morning. They love their new much space for them to run around and navigate through rooms on their own. I'm sure the newness will wear off soon, but for now we are enjoying it.

Speaking of new, what do you guys think of my new bathroom mirror? There are so many closets in the bathrooms, that I opted for a random stylish mirror - as opposed to the vanity/medicine cabinets you can buy at Lowe's. I didn't need to storage space and I thought the colors went nicely with the wall color. Plus I love how long it is!


Next time I blog, hopefully all the furniture will be in the house and I can post some "completed room" shots! Fingers crossed.