Monday, June 30, 2014

Dewey Beach

Last week Matt and I went to Dewey Beach in Delaware for a couple of days. We had gone back and forth a lot on vacation plans for this summer, but finally committed to this a few weeks ago. I haven't ever gone to the beach so early in the summer, right after school was out. It was kind of nice to have that to keep in mind during the last, stressful weeks of the school year. My family use to go to Rehoboth when I was pre-school age and I haven't been back since, and Matt had never been to Delaware so it was good for us both to visit a sort of new place.

We arrived on Tuesday afternoon, leaving our house after the morning rush was over. We spent the afternoon on the beach and then took the receptionist's tip about getting crab cakes at a hole in the wall, Woody's, for dinner. I'm not big on crab cakes, but these really were pretty good. That night we walked a little bit around town and had some drinks as well. 

Wednesday we spent the whole day at the beach and then planned to take the trolley to the Rehoboth Beach Boardwalk. We walked on the boardwalk and down Rehoboth Avenue stopping in some shops, people watching, and looking for a place to have dinner. We ended up going to Dos Locos and having some Mexican food. This is when I also found a Starbucks and was excited to add too my city mug collection, but quickly learned that Delaware is the only state to not have a city mug made by Starbucks.

Thursday morning we visited Dogfish Head Brewery. It was about a 25 minute drive from the beach to Milton, DE. There was a wait to go on the tour, but we were able to sample some of their beers while we waited. I also got some special Dogfish Head pickles. I love pickles! I would suggest spending the $2 on them if you ever go there! The tour was not the best I have ever been on, but there were some interesting Dogfish is actually the name of an island in Maine that the founder's family vacations on every year. 

We spent the rest of Thursday back at the beach, and then returned to Rehoboth for dinner again. This time we tried Jam Bistro. This was our best dining option of the week! We thought the food was really good, and we both had a Beach Grass cocktail (not like any of the recipes that you find if you google it) that was great as well. I would highly recommend this restaurant if you find yourself on the Delaware coast. When we woke up on Friday morning it was cold and overcast which maybe leaving a little easier. Overall, it was a nice, relaxing few days at the beach. I liked how easy/close the this was for us to get to from our house. It was a place where it was calm and relaxing, but also had things to do if you wanted to do them. Next up we have a trip to Boston for Matt's sister's wedding.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Recipe of the Week!

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies
As you might know, desserts and baking are not my thing. A couple weeks ago, though, dessert needed to be my thing because my turn at game night had to be a dessert course since we went to the big fish fry for lent. I felt like I needed to have options so after my go to, Eclair Cake, I made these cookies to go with. This recipe makes a whole bunch of cookies so after a lot of them went uneaten, I froze the rest and that worked out just fine. I can't say I am eager to make these again, but they were pretty good. The M&M's are essential.

1 stick butter, softened
1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
3 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla
2 teaspoons baking soda
4 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
1 cup M&M's

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream butter, peanut butter, and sugars. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Beat in baking soda, then oatmeal and mix-ins. Drop onto cookie sheets with an ice cream scoop and flatten slightly. Bake at for 8-10 minutes or until done. Do not overbake!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Friday Love


Summer. Obviously.


Night the Cat, Revealed. This year I wrote letters under the pen name "Night the Cat" (the cat I am holding in the picture - please note his lip gloss necklace and cupcake nose) to this first grade class. Wednesday we had our big reveal where they found out who Night's owner is. I am looking forward to making him the mascot of my first classroom next year.


This video. A follow up to the Camp Gyno video I laughed at hysterically for days.


Starbucks City Mugs. I LOVE these things. Seriously. They are by far the best coffee drinking mugs of all time. I buy one at each new place we travel to...I am hoping to add one to the collection next week. I am looking forward to drinking coffee from them this summer. Though I am considering quitting coffee July 1st.


Whoonu. Whoonu had been a family favorite for a long time. I first played it during my Summer Study days back in 2004, and then I got my own and we played it at each holiday with my cousins. It's my turn for game night tonight and I think I will be busting it out to enjoy this evening.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

The Bennett Wave

Behold, the Bennett Wave, 2014 edition.
So, so, so happy to have completed this sixth year at BES.
Happy Summer!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Recipe of the Week!

Homemade Pizza
I really love homemade pizza. It's so much better than ordering pizza. And it ties with going out for good pizza. My homemade pizza has evolved over the years. I used to buy Wegmans' pizza dough and make my own sauce, then add toppings. Now I mostly make my own dough (HUGE difference, HUGE), buy the sauce, and add toppings. I buy the sauce because I am in love with Don Pepino Pizza Sauce. I still occasionally make the sauce. Making the dough instead of buying it really makes the pizza taste better - the texture of the crust is so much better - and its like way, way easier to roll out. I use to hate rolling out that Wegmans dough. Our favorite toppings are turkey pepperoni, portobello mushrooms, and onions on one pizza, and pineapple and bacon on another. We do switch it up quite a bit. One other key move is placing the toppings between the sauce and dough. In my book it's a must. 

For the pizza dough:
3 1/2 to 4 cups flour
1 teaspoon sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons instant dry yeast
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 1/2 cups water, 110 degrees F
2 tablespoons olive oil

Combine the bread flour, sugar, yeast and kosher salt in the bowl of a stand mixer. While the mixer is running, add the water and 2 tablespoons of the oil and beat until the dough forms into a ball. If the dough is sticky, add additional flour until the dough comes together in a solid ball. If the dough is too dry, add additional water. Gently knead into a smooth, firm ball.

Cover the bowl with a towel and put it in a warm area to let it double in size, about 1 hour. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and divide it into 2 equal pieces. Roll into crust.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Friday Love


Orange is the New Black, Season Two. It came out on Netflix last weekend. I have only watched the first episode. I was trying to wait to have them to watch in the summer, but then I had too many crazy days at work and thought one might make me feel better. It worked. I can't wait to see what happens!


Summer Fruits & Veggies. I'm so excited that it's time for nectarines, strawberries, corn on the cob, and all the other produce that is best in the summer!



Pool Season. Our pool opened on Memorial Day and we have been a couple of times since. It's so nice to have a pool in our neighborhood, and even better that we live super close to it.


The Final Countdown. Only four days left in this school year. It's been quite a year. A year in which I learned a LOT of life lessons, both personal and professional. I am so looking forward to my first unencumbered summer in five years.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Recipe of the Week!

Spicy, Garlicky, Sauteed Rainbow Chard
I know what you are thinking...chard?! Seriously?! Yes, chard. Seriously. I know it's kind of random, but we are habitual vegetable eaters. Habitual as in, 1. I love vegetables and we eat them all the time, and 2. we eat the same ones all the time. I saw a recipe on Dinner: A Love Story using rainbow chard a few weeks ago and I got inspired. The [recipe] on DALS, by their 10 year old daughter (who writes quite well), is not the one I used, but it was the influence. This vegetable side is so simple and so delicious. I'm sure you can dress it any way you like to make it fit your meal or your tastebuds :)

Rainbow Chard (I used about half a bag, but wish I had more...Matt used some in his juice)
olive oil
garlic powder
red pepper flakes

Coat medium or large size skillet with olive oil. Place over medium low heat. Toss in rainbow chard. As the rainbow chard is wilting season with salt, garlic powder, and red pepper flakes to taste. See, I told you, super simple!

Monday, June 2, 2014

A Growing Garden

I'm so excited! My garden is becoming giant...already so much better than last year. I'm pretty sure I planted my plants the last weekend in April, that makes about six weeks of growing. When I took these pictures, they had been planted about two weeks. I can't believe the difference! 

tomatos and herbs
My tomatoes already have a bunch of flowers and even the start of some tiny, green tomatoes. We have already been enjoying the basil and cilantro from the herb box. I think I might attempt to make some pesto this weekend to try and keep up.

tiny tomatoes
My experimental plants are doing well too. I discovered the first flower on one of my pepper plants this weekend. I'm still not sure how I will know if the brussel sprout plant is going to grow some brussel sprouts. 

brussel sprouts, peppers, zucchini
I was backing out of my garage this morning and noticed that my zucchini plant had a giant flower on it. I was in too much of a hurry to stop and take a picture, but I wish I would have because this is what it looked like when I got home. I did notice a bunch of smaller flowers when I took this picture, though. 

zucchini flower...wish I took the picture this morning.
I am so excited to continue watching to growing over the summer, and even more excited to start reaping some of the benefits of garden growing!