Thursday, July 31, 2008

Marinated and Grilled Shrimp

This is a recipe of mine that my family and friends really enjoy. The ingredients and prep are simple and the flavor and texture are big.

2 pounds large raw shrimp, shelled and deveined (I use frz from Costco, yails on 31- 40 count)
1/3 cup galic infused olive oil (recipe follows)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/w cup Cazadores Reposado Tequila
1/2 teaspoon cayenne, ground chipoltle powder or ancho chile powder
3 to 6 garlic cloves
1/2 cup chile sauce

Garlic Infused Oil -- Place minced garlic cloves in the 1/2 cup olive oil. Place in microwave for 30 to 60 seconds. If too hot, place in freezer for 5 to 10 minutes. Use in recipe.

Place shrimp in a medium bowl and add garlic, infused olive oil (garlic too), salt, tequila, cayenne and chile sauce. Cover and refrigerate 1/2 hour to 2 hours. (No longer or they will become tough.)

Spray grill pans with Pam. Prehat pans along with gas grill on high. OR preheat George Foreman grill to 300 degrees. Remove shrimp from marinade and place on preheated grill pans OR on George Foreman grill. On outdoor gas grill cook about 2 minutes per side. On the George Foreman grill, 1 minute total. You will have to do this in batches.
Eat. They are finger licking good! Note: These are good served right off the grill, or chilled in the refrigeratot. They make as good as an enteree, an appetizer or topping a leafy green salad such as spinach.

David Update with Surgeon

David had another follow-up appointment with the surgeon this afternoon. We were given the news we were hoping for -- he can start working at putting weight on his foot. He has done all the foot movement exercises he needed to get him to this point, though the movement is not as lose as the surgeon would like. This next step like every other step of the way will be tiny little baby steps. Using crutches he can barely sweep his foot across the floor at first. This will be done many times over, then he is to try putting just a tad more weight to the ground....days of this and then a little more, and a little more. We are looking at 3 to 4 weeks of a little mores until he is hopefully able to put all is weight on his foot taking a real weighted step. It has been 10 weeks at this point since the accident and 9 weeks since the surgery. What's another 4 weeks or more? At this moment it is not a good time for David and me to answer that!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Circle of Life

Jonathon Lester Perry was born in Maine on Friday July 25,2008 weighing in at 7 lb 10 oz to the delight of his parents Sara and Gannon Perry.

Arroz En Adobo

This is a dish you will find in many Mexican homes. Very simple in preparation as well as ingredients and you can use what you have on hand. Instead of the pork you can use chicken or strips of turkey breast. For a vegetarian meal, you can use large chunks of squash, whole mushrooms, yams, or carrots. This has wonderful flavor for such a simple dish.

4 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 pound pork loin (or other meat), cut into small chunks
1 ancho chile, washed and soaked in hot water for 30 minutes OR use 1 tablespoon ancho chili powder
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1/2 small white onion, cut in half
1/2 cup water
2 cups boiling water
1 cup long-grain white rice, washed until water runs clear
2 tablespoons large capers
1 tablespoon dreid Mexcian oregano
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Heat the oil and fry the meat in a deep pot until brown. Remove the meat with a slotrted spoon to a dish. Reserve the oil in the pot.

Stem and seed the chile. (Or measure ground ancho powder) Put it in a blender with the garlic, onion, and 1/2 cup water. Puree until smooth, scraping down the sides of the blender with a rubber spatula. Reheat the oil in the pot, carefully add the blender ingredients (it slatters!) and fry the sauce. Cook, stirring for 2 minutes. Add 2 cups boiling water and the reserved meat to the pot. Bring it back to a boil. Add the rice, capers, oregano and salt. Mix well, then lower the heat to the lowest simmer and cover. Cook until the rice is cooked and the meat tender, about 25 minutes. More water may be added little by little, though usually not necessary.

When cooked, the rice should be a bit moist -- not too dry. Serve as is, or with steaming hot tortillas along with.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Special People Make a Special Weekend

Outside of our friends being here for the VJB tasting there were a lot of other wonderful moments for us this weekend. Family and friends came, some of whom we do not see very often, and we met a new family member for the fist time too. It wasan unforgettable weekend! Take a look........

My niece Erin's husband Rob who we do not get to see often and my son-in-law John. It was a real treat having them together.

My niece Erin and her 2 month old daughter Mackenzie who we met for the fist time Saturday. She is adorable and such a welcomed addition to our family.

Having my great nephew Steven together with my grandson Justin was another heart warming moment.

My long time friend Cathy who I met in kindergarten was there. (I will not say how long ago that was!) My daughter Jen and my honorary son Wayne. It was great all being together.

My friend Sarah flew out from AZ for the weekend. We rarely are together and we had a blast! She fits right in with our family and other friends. They had nothing but great things to say about her. We hated to se her leave Sunday.

2 month old Mackenzie and 4 month old Jacob together for the first time., We all have hoped these cousins will grow up as close as their mothers did.

Three generations of the Hoekman men together. Nice to see.

My good friend Kathy with my grandson Jacob. Wonderul to have the time with her and Bob and heart warming to see her and Jacob together for the first time.

Mackenzie. She is a doll. Look at those eyes! Welcome to the family my love.

VJB Wine Tasting in Our Home

We had been planning this day for months and when it arrived it was in no way a disappointment. Our family and friends enjoyed a lovely late afternoon with Henry and Susan from VJB tasting and learning about the wines and the winery family. There was California wine country tasting foods such as artisan cheeses and tapenades made by Maria Gabriella Belmonte, executive chef at VJB Cellars and Vineyards.

Flowers. I made sure we had beautiful flowers.

Classic California Wine Tasting Fair.

Up front that's Susan and Ednamay. In the back from the left there's Dom, Fran,Averill, Barbara, Paulette and Bob.
Here's Joy and me. It was a delight to see her. It had been way too long!

On the left my great nephew Steven. On the right Gabriella, Henry's daughter. They sure liked one another. After Gabriella left, Steven came and asked me "Where did my girlfreind go?" When I told him she went home, his lips pouted out and they quivered as he fought tears. Steven is 3, Gabrriella 5. They were adorable together.

The wine tasting menu.

The tasting table set and waiting for the guests to arrive. That's Henry in the background, the owner of VJB. It was a pleasure to have him in our home.

Friends and family enjoying the wines and food.

Henry keeping up with the pouring.

Fun and more fun.
Decisions, decisions. What to purchase they are all so good!

Okay Henry, I want 2 of the Tucai, 2 Dante's....................

On the left my neice Erin and her 2 month old daughter Mackenzie. On the right my daughter Jen and her 4 month old son Jacob. You all know Jacob by now!

I would like to try the Barbera now please.....................

That's Jen's MIL Linda on the right gabbing with Erin and Jacob.

That's my honorary Mom Rose on the left, me in the center and Rose's daughter Sue (my sister) on the right. The silly guy behind us is my grandon Justin.

After the wine tasting, most people stayed for more wine, appetizers and later a buffet dinner of penne pasta Alfredo with chicken, tossed green salad and garlic French bread. Fun was had by adults and the children. It was wonderful to be all together and share such a perfect day of tasting wines and food, as well as perfect weather for this area. We sopent the evening otdoors on the aptio listerning to water fountains in the background as we ate, drank , talked and laughed. The after party ended around 10 PM. It was a thoroughly delightful day!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Are You An Organizer?

I was reading my friend Kelli's Blog and she mentioned something from her friend Aimee's Blog, so I read that and I found at the end of Aimee's post I was being asked "Are You An Organizer?" My dear you have no idea who you are asking that question to! I am married to a collector, I have to be!

I have always been an organizer and being married to my collector loving hubby I really had to beef up my organization or I wouldn't be able to live in the house. It doesn't help that over our married years, I have become a bit of a collector as well. Though I have been getting rid of this year. It is good for the soul. It is good for breathing deeper. It is freeing.

Music CD's. I love music and I can't get rid of my CD's because I honestly do listen to them. They are organized in my office in alphabetical order by last name of the artist. I can always find just what I want.

I scrapbook so I put these rolling drawers at my desk and they are filled with scrapbooking supplies such as stickers, glue sticks,, pens, double sided tape, my writing tablets, address labels, rubber stamps I use often, paperclips, envelopes, etc. Right at my fingertips which I like, and it is all things I do use.
These little containers are actually magnetic spice containers I picked up at IKEA. I have dried flowers from my garden and cloth buttons I use when making greeting cards and scrapbooking. They are attached to my magnetic bulletin board above my work area.
These old antique jars house buttons and spools of thread that belonged to my Nana. She was an amazing seamstress and these notions of hers always make me think of her and smile.
This year we added two walls of these floor to ceiling small shelves in my walk-in kitchen pantry. They hold herbs and spices, vinegars, oils, baking chocolates, bread crumbs, Jell-O and such. Everything is right at my fingertips and easy to see. We also took a coat closet in the back end of the kitchen we never used and filled it with floor to ceiling large shelves that houses canned goods.
These are in the closet of my craft room/office.They house my rubber stamps and inks, all stamping supplies such as embossing powders, hot air gun, stencils, papers, envelopes. The containers on top are full of wire ribbon which I find I do not use that much. My friend Verona does so they are all going to her.
Okay, so I have a greeting card for every occasion with jusy about every one I know in mind when I bought them. I have three organized boxes full. Some even have category separations. These are two of the boxes. I don't understand why I still always seem to have to buy cards though.

Those rubber stamps I mentioned? I stamped passionately for years though no longer find myself using them much. Over those years I did end up with a collection of stamps. I have this binder that is spearated by types of stamps "flowers", "ocean," etc and I stamped every stamp I have so I know what I have. I just flip through the book and find what I want to use, then go to the appropriate drawer. Well, I USED to go to the right drawer easily. They have gotten mixed up so I do have to go through and organize again. Actually, I am thinking of donating a lot of them to daughters, grandsons and friends. My craft paints. I used these a lot for quite a few years, though slowing down with them now as well. I think this is something that needs to be downsized.
Scarpbooking, crafting and computer papers. A few years ago a Currents store closed out near us. They were selling their fixtures as well, so I bought this papaper stand. It was bargain too! This sits right next to my work table. I not only like organized but I like convienent too.
That is a little taste of some of the ways I have organized here. Did someone ask me if I was an organizer?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Let There Be Windows

And with a full day of hard work there was. Great job John and Bob!!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Update on John and Jen's House

This is a good shot of the front of the house. To the left of the garage will be the front walk and door. To the right of the garage is the side pad where the go-kart trailer and construction company trailer will be parked.

The house gets wrapped today with Tyvek.
To us it seems the house is going up so fast. However I am sure to John and Bob it doesn;t feel that way!
At the end of another hard work day Dad and son fall asleep sitting at the computer!