Monday, September 14

Happy Birthday To Me!

Well, today is my 26th birthday! Wow, I can't believe I have already surpassed the quarter of a century mark! (I think someone should buy me this cake and have it delivered to my work!)

Here are some facts about September 14th:

In 1814 Francis Scott Key wrote the Star Spangled Banner

1901 President McKinley died of gunshot wounds (succeeded by Theodore Roosevelt)
In 1948 the ground-breaking for the United Nations in NYC.

September 14th was the first birthday drawn for the US draft in the Vietnam War.

In 1983 I was born (and I share that date with Amy Winehouse... man couldn't I share it with someone better than that!)

In 1994 the MLB season is canceled due to strike.

Sunday, September 13

Weekend with the Family

Well for Labor Day, we made the 6 hour drive up to Fayetteville to finally allow Keith to spend more than 6 hours with the nephew. Unfortunately we did not get to leave immediately after work like we planned, but we did finally get on the road by 6 and pulled into my brother's driveway shortly after midnight, exhausted and ready to go straight to bed!

Saturday of course was the first day of college football, which meant that the men in the house were going to be worthless (though I have to say, they did prepare the meals for the day, thanks to the grill). Us ladies decided to do a little bit of shopping during the early games, but made sure to make it back for the Nebraska game and OF COURSE the LSU game that night!

This was Austin's first Nebraska game, and my brother made sure that he was showing his Nebraska pride!

Here he is hanging out with his Poppi. (Yes, we finally named my dad. Though where he got Poppi from we are not sure and he wants to be called Big Poppi but we refuse)

Now this was Keith's first trip to see the little guy since he was baptized in March and can I say someone is obsessed with his Uncle Keith. I don't know what it is but little boys are just amazed by Keith. With Austin I think it is the brown hair. He is so used to being around blondes all the time that he just loves us brunettes.

You see someone just loves his Uncle Keith. He would have stayed on top of those shoulders all day if we would have let him. He just laughed and laughed.

Austin is growing so fast and it is just so much fun to watch him. It is amazing all of the things that he has learned since I last saw him about two months ago.

He now holds his bottle like a big boy. Well that is until someone else decides that they want to hold it for him and then those little hands are non-existent!
He even tried fruit for the first time while we were there. He just loved the orange! This was while we were at Mimi's, which if any of you read Kelly's Korner we all know she loves. I now understand why she loves it! Seriously it was delicious! And if you bring a child with you when you sit down they have a little plate with Cheerios and crackers and fruit! Seriously how awesome is that!
Austin is also learning how to stand up and hold on now! Yes there is a hand holding on to him there. He isn't really strong enough to do it for a long time, so we were a little worried he would fall and start screaming so we figured better safe than sorry!

It was a great weekend full of family and great food and I can't wait to go back again. Unfortunately though the next trip isn't planned until Austin's first birthday in December! I don't know if I will make it that long!

Saturday, September 12

Pizza on the Grill

Ok I know it has been almost a month since my last post, but since I started working full time I never have much free time anymore! I am loving my job but it keeps me very busy and when I get home I have so many things to do around the house, that I don't get to just sit around and play on the computer anymore! Boo to that I know!

Anyway, I have been meaning to type this post up for awhile now and since Keith is busy watching football for the next 5 months I figured I would do it this morning before I start the day of cleaning!

So Keith gets Men's Health every month and he found this recipe in the July/August issue and decided he wanted to try it so we did. It was really tasty, and not hard to make, but messy! So I hope you try it!

Ingredients for Dough:
6 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 cups warm water (77 to 81 degrees F)
4 1/2 tsp active dry yeast
1/4 cup salt

(we cut the recipe in half as it makes about 4 pizzas and though we like to eat, I didn't think we needed that much)

Directions for Dough:
1. Let the yeast dissolve in the warm water for about 5 minutes.

2. Combine the flour and salt and dump the mixture onto a flat surface.
Make a depression in the middle , pour the yeast and water into it, and combine the dry and wet ingredients by hand until the dough starts to come together. (this was the biggest mess... I know there is an easier way) Keep working the dough with the palms of your hands for 7 to 8 minutes, and then let it rest at room temperature for about 2 hours, or until it doubles in size.
(this was before it doubled) Now punch it down, squeezing out all the air bubbles. Cut the dough into four equal pieces and shape them into balls. Place them in the fridge for another 2 hours.
3. For each pizza, dust your table and the top of the dough ball with flour. Let the dough rest for 5 minutes. Use the tips of your fingers to stretch it outward to a 10-inch circle, with the edges thicker than the center. Leftover dough (if kept in ball form) will keep in the fridge for 3 days.
Here is the dough all rolled out and ready to go on the grill. The dough tasted great which I was a little surprised about since it was my first time attempting to make pizza dough!
For Sauce:
1 can (28 oz) peeled San Marzano tomatoes, like Cento
Directions for Sauce:
Wash your hands and dump the entire contents of the can into a bowl. Squeeze each tomato until the sauce is smooth but not soupy. Chunks are ok. (this was so easy for a sauce and so fresh!)
Cooking Directions for the Crust:
Transfer the crust onto the grill using a well-floured pizza board. (We didn't have one of these, but found the easiest thing was to pick the dough off the cookie sheet and basically throw it on the grill) Grill the crust uncovered for 20 seconds, or until the dough is slightly charred and rigid. Rotate it 90 degrees and cook for another 20 seconds. Now flip the crust; cook it for another 30 seconds and remove from grill.

Cooking Directions for the Toppings:
(Of course with a pizza you can top it with another you choose. We used fresh mozzarella, prosciutto, pepperoni and mushrooms! It was wonderful.)
With the cross hatched side up, top your pizza (off the grill). Place on heat and cover the grill. Cook the pie for 2 to 5 minutes, or until the cheese is melted, the ingredients cook through, and the bottom is well charred.
Now just enjoy!!