Monday, February 6, 2012

mini caprese salad bites

raise your hand if you love caprese salad!
a burst of fresh deliciousness in every bite.

it was about 2 1/2 hours before i needed to be at a party with a side dish in hand.
i had a napping babe i did not want to wake just to go to the market.
what ever i had on hand was going to have to suffice.
i felt like i was on a cooking game show.
what could i make that didn't LOOK like i'd totally forgotten i needed to bring something??

thank goodness i had recently picked up a container of cherry tomatoes at costco that was still sitting in my pantry.
i had also purchased a huge bag of mozzarella string cheese for the munch during that costco run.
:: i obviously would have preferred buffalo mozzarella, but hey...beggars can't be choosers. i was on lock down with a napping baby ::
low and behold a friend had given me a very large bunch of fresh basil just the day before.
bite sized caprese salads for everyone!!

the most time consuming part is scooping out the cherry tomatoes.
it took me about 30 minutes to make about 30.
man these lil guys were tasty and a big hit at the party.

Mini Caprese Salad Bites
1 large package of cherry tomatoes
8-10 sticks of mozzarella string cheese or 1 container pearl sized buffalo mozzarella
1 bunch of fresh basil
Kosher salt and pepper
Extra virgin olive oil
Balsamic vinegar

Rinse and pat dry the cherry tomatoes. Remove all stems. The tops of the cherry tomato are usually flat, so I cut off the bottom more rounded portion to get inside the tomato. Use a sharp paring knife cut a thin slice off the bottom. Scoop out the seeds with a melon baller or the paring knife. Discard the seedy centers. Place the tomato cut side down on a paper towel to drain liquid.

Depending on the size of your cherry tomatoes cut the mozzarella sticks into bite size pieces that will fit nicely in to the tomato.
Rinse and gently pat dry the basil. Hand tear generous pieces to go in the middle of each tomato.
I made them large and folded them to fit.

To assemble, line your scooped out cherry tomatoes on a cutting board or cookie sheet.
Season to taste with fresh ground pepper and kosher salt.
Line each tomato with a piece of basil, gently pushing it to the bottom of the tomato.
Top off with a piece of mozzarella.
Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
Best served when cheese is at room temperature.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

5 months

5 months.
153 days.
220,320 minutes.
a relatively short amount of time to know someone.

i am not able to recall what life was like before you arrived.
maybe i can't seem to remember because you've always been there.
in my minds eye.
in my prayers.
in my future that is now here.

you are asleep on the bed right behind me.
i can hear you breathing.
your chubby arms and legs are tossing about as you try to get comfortable.
you some how figured out you like to sleep on your side with your leg propped up on a pillow just like me.
that makes me smile.

i just turned around to look at you for the 1,254 time today.
you have a sweet little grin on your face.
what exactly does a 5 month old dream about?
your favorite teething toy?
eating real food?
watching the waves at our favorite beach?

i adore you.
you remind me that God the Father gives good gifts.
i breath deep and slow when i hold you.

i was terrified and shocked when the ultrasound tech uttered the words:
"let's get a better look at your little boy."
a boy?
i'm going to have a boy??
are you sure?

i had talked myself into thinking i was pregnant with another girl.
i'm a girl.
i have a girl.
i can handle a girl.
boys on the other hand....yikes.
i don't know how to raise a boy.

but then i realized it wasn't just any boy.
it was you.
sweet, happy, perfect for me, you.
God knew all along i needed a little b in my life.

i love you with all that i am.
thank you for making me realize i don't need to have it all figured out.
i just need to enjoy every. single. day. i get to be with you.

i am grateful Lord for that precious reminder.
to relish this life i have been thoughtfully given.
that You've got "this"....what ever "this" may be.

that you Lord, make me whole.
everything else is just icing on the cake.
you alone are enough.

then you go and place desires in my heart.
and then You fulfill those desires.
that on this journey to an eternal destination, i get to live this amazing life.
i really don't deserve it.

i am  p o s i t i v e  i have no idea what i'm doing.
how to raise a boy, what to make for dinner tomorrow night, whether or not i sent in the car registration.
i could go on and on.
but i have complete confidence in You Lord that you know exactly what You're doing...
and i'll happily go anywhere with You.

thank you for that.
thank you for the little boy fast asleep on the bed behind me.
thank you for his beautiful sister, her heart of worship and crazy dance moves.
thank you for their amazing father...the handsome, Godly man that calls me his bride.
thank you for everything.


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