Wednesday, September 26, 2012

more soccer

reilly's soccer team (manchester united) has had 3 games
they are 2 and 1. 

the season is going well
although, i'm convinced their play 
is directly related to the weather

chilly = a win
ungodly hot = a loss

here are some new photos from the last two games...

manchester united vs. huntley blue 
(5 to 1 loss)
reilly (in the pig-tails) running
more running
i have no idea what reilly is doing in the photo... but it makes me laugh! 
it appears reilly is walking now
more walking... remember it was ungodly hot that day :) 

reilly throwing in the ball
on the bench.... look how red her little face is.... she's kinda behind the girl in blue
good game, good game, good game.
dan is assistant coach, see my cute hubby at the end of the line?
 manchester united vs. huntley pink 
(7 to 0 win) 
reilly in background in a striped jersey... we accidentally sent her to the game in her uniform from last year!
hey... i never claimed to be perfect. at least it's the right color!
throw in... in the wrong jersey. GAH! 
happy girl running.... remember it was chilly this day!
hope your enjoying your fall.
xoxo - e

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

roasted tomato soup with fresh basil

yesterday i blogged about a 
baby shower i co-hosted last weekend
now, as promised...
here is the recipe for the roasted tomato soup i served at the shower.

a special thanks to krysta from my life in food
who shared this (fantastic) recipe on her beautiful blog

here are a few of my cooking photos
followed by the recipe 

the ingredients

roasting the fresh tomatoes, onion and garlic.... this made the house smell devine!

all the ingredients (minus the cream) in the pot....

after i used my brand-spankin-new immersion blender and added the cream.... yummo!
here's the recipe...

roasted tomato soup with fresh basil
(via my life in food)

2-1/2 lbs fresh tomatoes (mix of heirlooms, cherry, vine, & plum tomatoes)
2 small yellow onions, sliced
6 garlic cloves, peeled
1/2 c extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
4 c chicken broth
2 bay leaves
4 tbs unsalted butter
1/2 c chopped fresh basil leaves
3/4 c heavy whipping cream
1 cup croutons (optional)
(serves 4... i doubled the recipe)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Wash, core, and cut the tomatoes into halves. Spread the tomatoes, onions, and garlic onto a baking tray. (Add the cherry tomatoes whole). Drizzle with the olive oil & season with salt & pepper. Roast for 20-30 minutes, until caramelized.

Transfer the roasted tomatoes, onions & garlic to a large stockpot. Pour in any roasting liquid from the tray, 3 cups of the chicken broth, the bay leaves, and butter. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat & simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, until liquid has reduced by a third.

Remove & discard bay leaves. Add chopped basil. Puree the soup with an immersion blender until smooth. You can also puree in batches in a regular blender. Return soup to low heat; add the 3/4 cup cream & adjust consistency with remaining chicken broth, if necessary. Season to taste with salt & pepper. Ladle soup into bowls. if you like, garnish each bowl with fresh chopped basil and croutons.

this is an amazing recipe! i promise!
xoxo -e

Monday, September 24, 2012

baby shower

last weekend
i co-hosted a baby shower
for my sister-in-law
at my home

this is her third baby,
so it was a small gathering of her closest friends

the theme was..
baby shower or rain
i guess

here are some photos...

sorry about the crummy photos
i think you can get the idea
it was a success
and my sister-in-law was happy :)

for lunch we served...
chicken salad croissants
roasted tomato basil soup
ramen noodle salad (my sister-in-law's favorite)
a yummy white cake with lemon filling & buttercream frosting


I will post some recipes later this week.
xoxo - e

Thursday, September 20, 2012

diy: painting my front door

the front door is painted
and i'm thrilled with the finished product.

as far as diy home improvement projects go,
this one was quick and easy!

let me remind you of what my house looked like before

july 2010
this morning / september 2012

while i have you, i thought i'd share our family plaque.... i love it :)

here are the tools i used...

1. Exterior Behr Ultra Premium Semi Gloss
2. Color: Behr Red Red Wine
3. ScotchBlue Painters Tape
4. Wooster Journeyman Master 2 in. Angle Sash Brush
5. Wooster Pro 3-Piece Mini Roller Tray Set

How to paint your front door
(the easy way) 

1. This is tutorial is for doors that are already painted 
(not naked or stained doors)

2) do not take door off hinges 

3) wash the door (give it a good scrub) 
and let it completely dry (i used pine-sol and warm water)

4) if you only want to paint one side of the door, 
use blue tape to tape the areas you don't want painted

5) use a 2" angled brush to paint the angled parts around the door panels and 
cut in around the door hardware. paint a thin coat to avoid drips.

6) use a small roller to paint the flat surfaces, a thin coat to avoid drips

7) VERY IMPORTANT: let the door dry overnight

8) day 2, lightly clean the door and let it dry

9) repeat steps 5 through 7

my door only took two coats, but you may need more 
depending on the thickness of your coats and the color you use.

the result was beautiful and it was such an easy process!
xoxo - e

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

ikea love.

i was at ikea today.

oh ya!
a fiddle leaf fig


they weren't the big fancy trees i've seen on design blogs.
they were $12.

maybe they can grow into
a big fancy trees?

i will have my front door reveal soon.
due to weather, i haven't gotten a good photo.

xoxo - e

Monday, September 17, 2012

diy - painting the front door

i've been researching the correct way
to successfully paint my front door.
there are a lot of tutorials out there, 
but i decided to ask a professional.
more specifically, the guy at home depot:)

first up...
choose a color.

here is how my front door looks now...

 i used photoshop to change the door color.
here are a few options i'm considering...

 option 1 -  dark green

option 2 - red

option 3 - dark blue

option 4: dark brown (matching the trim color) 

so what do you think?

i'll reveal the "after" tomorrow.
xoxo - e

Friday, September 14, 2012

big boy haircut




admiring his new look :)

sniff sniff
my boy is growing up!

hope you have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

i pinned it then i [cooked] it

this recipe was so yummy.
my family licked their plates.
the mustard adds some extra zing.

i cut down on calories by substituting
the sour cream for reduced fat sour cream

Beef Stroganoff
  • 2 pounds beef chuck, trimmed of fat & cut into thin slices 
  • (about 1/2 inch thick and 3 inches long)
  • 1 large onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 1 pound sliced white mushrooms
  • kosher salt & ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • i lb. Cooked egg noodles

In a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker, toss beef, onion, 
& mushrooms, 1 1/2 tsp. coarse salt & 1 tsp. pepper
Cover, & cook on low until meat is tender, 
about 8 hours (or on high for 6 hours).

In a 2-cup glass measuring cup, whisk cornstarch 
with 2 tablespoons water. Ladle 1 cup cooking 
liquid into measuring cup; whisk to combine. 
Pour into a small saucepan, & bring to a boil;
 cook until thickened, about 1 minute. 
With slow cooker turned off, stir in cornstarch 
mixture, then sour cream and mustard. 
Serve beef over noodles.

a perfect meal, for a chilly fall evening!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


where were you?
i was in my loft 
in the chicago loop
in the shadow of the sears tower

watching the today show
the first plane hits 
matt lauer is reporting
there is confusion
the second plane hits
it's clear
we're under attack

i wonder 
when will the sears tower be hit?
i can see it from my window
still standing
no fire

dan had already left for work
safely out of the city

there's a knock on my door
it 's heather
my neighbor

we cry

a plane hits the pentagon

what we should do?
i grab my mini hand-held tv
we walk to work

we stop at the chicago river
the south tower collapses
we watch
on my mini hand-held tv

a few people gathered
they watch too
looking up from the tv
the sears tower is now being evacuated

i walk on
i arrive at work
my  building is closed

i head home
running past the sears tower
hoping it won't be hit

heather is already home
her building is closed too

another plane crashes in a field pennsylvania
the north tower goes down

heather leaves the city
suburb bound

i remember my dad is traveling
i panic
is he in new york?
it's possible... i can't remember
i call my mom in california
she's asleep
she knows nothing
i share the news
dad is in detroit
he's safe

will chicago be next?
will the sears tower be attacked?
will it fall?

dan comes home

we decide to stay in the city
all u.s. planes grounded and accounted for

we cry and cry
we can't stop watching the tv

downtown chicago is a ghost town

we hang a flag from our balcony
our neighbors do too

the world will never be the same

Monday, September 10, 2012

it's soccer season!

it's soccer season
and i love it

saturday was reilly's first game
the air was cool and crisp
(a little windy)
and we won!

Go Manchester United!
check out my little #6

after kneeing the ball
lots of running!

after reilly's first shot on goal.... i missed the photo :(

with coach after the game 
glowing after their 3 to 2 win 
so proud of our little bootsy!