Brie + Roasted Tomato + Arugula Summer Pizza

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Thursday, June 28, 2012

1. Making the dough.  I'm still tweaking my own recipe so I used this delicious & easy one from Pioneer Woman this time. There's no kneading involved - it couldn't be easier! It is better though when you make it a few days in advance. Or you could always buy dough - especially if you have a Trader Joe's near you {miss it so}.
2. Roast Cherry Tomatoes. While you're preheating the oven to 500, put halved {or whole} cherry tomatoes on a baking sheet, drizzled in olive oil + sea salt for about 10-20 minutes or until they start to brown and deflate. This will keep your pizza from getting soggy and make it prettier. (:
3. Assemble + Bake. Spread out the dough on a lightly floured baking sheet drizzled in olive oil. Drizzle a bit more EVOO on top of the dough. {Can you tell I'm an olive oil lover or what!} 
Spread out the brie chunks, feta & shredded parmigiano-reggiano to your heart's delight. Next add the roasted tomatoes and stick it in the oven for about 10 minutes or until the crust starts to brown and the cheese bubbles. 
4. Arugula arugula. Throw some arugula over the top of your hot pizza and serve with a nice glass of wine ~ Merlot or a crisp Chardonnay would be perfect.
I also had strawberries on hand so I mixed mango + pineapple juice, squeezed in a lemon & sliced strawberries on top. It was as yummy as it was beautiful, and was so refreshing to have aside our pizza and wine.

Altogether, this was such a simple, healthy and super delicious meal.
And incredibly colorful. If anyone makes it, please let me know how you like it.

ps: Cam comes home tonight!!! YAAAAAAY!

Summer Dining al fresco

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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

 {I think I get as excited for a simple, beautiful table as I do for a simple, beautiful outfit}

I'm inviting you onto our deck again today via photos. Welcommme!
I made this dinner for Cam before he left this week for the field. It's fun to do something a little special for him before leaving to train in the jungle and sleep in the dirt with his marines. I'm no Martha though- we'll curl up on the couch or sit on the floor sometimes for dinner {this is Japan afterall!} rather than at our actual table outside because it's so blazing hot.
 {peonies in mason jars + recycled bottles make a fun & simple summer centerpiece}
Meals are easily one of our favorite times of day.
During the week, we normally get to have dinner together and it's our time to sit down face to face {or bum to bum if we're sitting next to each other!}, talk, drink wine & savor food & each other.
We cherish it. 
Ever since moving out here and having time to actually put quality meals together for us or for friends, I've thought a lot on how important meal-time is.  And on how much we have to be thankful for. The simple pleasure of having food {and good, natural food at that!} on the table each day is such a blessing that we personally take for granted. Traveling a bit more in the Third World and getting to visit tsunami survivors on mainland Japan has made us realize more and more that we can literally never be thankful enough. We all have so much to be thankful for!

...
I'll post this pizza recipe tomorrow.
I'm still dreaming about it, it was that good!

Cameron Adirondack Rocking Chairs

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Monday, June 25, 2012

Cam built these turq adirondack rockers in a weekend. He's amazing! 
Rocking chairs on the beach just fits, don't you think? I'm kind of at a loss for words thinking about how thankful we are for our home out here that the Lord has blessed us with. 
Any chance we were actually at home this weekend, this is where we were.  We've also been using these rockers around our outdoor dining table and it adds such a fun pop of color against the white washed wood & white drapes. 
Bravo, my Love!

Weekend Snaps

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I took a little blogging/computer hiatus this past {busy} week, which is refreshing to do sometimes.. 
so hi! (:  Missed you all.  It poured non-stop every single day for a week, but as soon as the weekend rolled around, it has been pure gorgeous, hot sunshine. I wish so much that you could see how absolutely stunning it is here right now. There just aren't words!  The past few days we have woke up in awe.
Here's a couple snaps from the weekend to give you an idea..
 {Wow. Good Morning!!}
{Offroading together. Not sure what could make my husband happier?}
{As always, this is my personal favorite and what makes me smile like a fool. Riding the scoot with Cam through Yomitan Village & along the coast.}

How are you all?? I hope doing wonderfully!

Grilled Cilantro Chicken Skewers Over Lemon Garlic Linguini

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Monday, June 18, 2012

We spent all weekend working together outside in the glorious blazing sun on our back deck. 
So excited to show you our rocking chairs.
I don't know what it is about working around the house, but it always makes us so hungry.
I had chicken marinating all weekend that I put on skewers, along with cherry tomatoes, and put it all on the charcoal grill while I cooked linguine..  the result was magic. 
I hope you get a chance to make this ~ it was so so yummy while being easy to make. 
The marinade was thrown together with what was in our 
pantry at the time {which always seems to be how I stumble upon my favorites!}:
{1/2 - 1 cup soy sauce}
{1/4 cup olive oil}
{3 cloves of garlic}
{good squeeze of honey}
{pinch or two of sea salt}
{cut fresh cilantro}
{one lemon's worth of juice}
Shake it all up in a freezer bag. Cut the chicken into chunks + coat them in the bag.
We ate the first batch of bbq'd chicken after it had only marinated for a few hours and it was good. 
But nothing compared to the flavor after waiting 48 hours!
Put the chicken and cherry tomatoes on skewers directly on the bbq. 
Meanwhile, cook the pasta al dente, with a few good handfuls of sea salt. 
Drain, but do not rinse.
Grate about 2 cups of parmigiano reggiano cheese.  
Toss the linguine with the grated cheese & 2 cloves of garlic,  drizzling
in a good amount of olive oil as you do. 
Top the pasta with the chicken and tomato skewers & 
squeeze a lemon + sprinkle more fresh cilantro over the whole plate of deliciousness.
Hope you love it as much as we did!

Weekend.

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Saturday, June 16, 2012

We're building rocking chairs!!
Well. Actually.
I should say Cam is building rocking chairs.
I am the resident painter, cook and the dance-around-him-make-him-laugh-girl to keep him entertained while he does all the actual work.

Popsie & Daddio.
We are thinking so much of you two today.
We think you are the greatest dads in the entire world {and the coolest}.
 Pops, the way you and Bethie raised Cam has blessed our marriage so much.  From you teaching him to be a real man all the way to being willing to do the dishes.  Thank you!!
Daddio. You already know how dearly I love you.
Thank you for always loving me. Even that time I crashed your new car into the garage door...
When I thought that was it for me you were soo forgiving you even thanked me for the reminder that it's just a car. {!}
We love you both and are so so thankful for you.
Happiest Father's Day!

To the Wisest Soul We Know

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Thursday, June 14, 2012

 It's my Dad's birthday today. GW! 
Every single time we talk to him, we learn {and laugh. he's hilarious!}. And love him even more.
I often scribble things down that he's saying so we won't forget. 
He has wisdom and knowledge in droves.
 Here's just a couple of our recent favorites from him, in no particular order.
Happiest birthday to you, Daddy! 
The man who not only taught me how to ride a bike, hike a mountain, run, throw a football, drink wine, but also instilled in me as a little girl the value of a woman and to wait for my Cam. 
We love you so much! We're drinking a bottle of red today in your name!

Tomatoes, Olive Oil, Goat Cheese. These are a few of my favorite things

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Tuesday, June 12, 2012


Last night we cooked a 10 lb tuna Cam caught. It was so delicious our dinner conversation only had one word. Repeated. "Mmmmm."  

Today, it got even better atop my salad.


I am a salad lover. Through and through. Cam is getting closer to becoming one.

This salad was simple but amazingly flavorful, with only a few ingredients:
cherry tomatoes
goat cheese
breaded fish
salad dressing of olive oil, balsamic & a squeeze of honey

Happy Tuesday.

The Beautiful {& Affordable} Thai Resort We Stayed at..

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Monday, June 11, 2012

{fish in water!}
{the reception area.. ohh did we feel welcome}
{to get to our room you went down a steep hill, then on a little path covered in palms and down a staircase}
{we loved that infinity pool so.much.}
{my most favorite room of the resort!}
{isn't that gorgeous?! we brought a bottle of wine up there one night to watch the sunset and Cam would often find me wandering up there during the week for no reason with a big smile on my face}
At the time, I didn't think I took a lot of photos...  yeah..

The resort was absolutely amazing ~ it's built into a cliffside high above a quieter beach of Koh Samui. There's only ten rooms, and I think we counted 6 infinity pools.. with the private layout, landscape & palm-covered little paths leading everywhere, it often felt like we were the only ones there.  There was such attention to detail, from small wind chimes and waterfalls throughout, to delicious Thai food and coffee each day. It was idyllic for our anniversary and we are so thankful we got to celebrate there.  When you hike down the steep mountainside to the town below, or even the road below, you will literally jump out of the way of a speeding scooter or 4x4 and are instantly back in reality!   
I meant what I said about the dollar going much farther in Thailand.. we try to spend as little as possible on hotels + travel & we spent far less here than we've ever spent staying anywhere in Japan! I don't know what their prices are normally, but I'd recommend booking early to get their specials. That helped even more.

I mentioned before that we missed our flight in Hong Kong on the way home and were a day late getting Cam back to work. I know it to be true that God uses literally everything for your good -- even a missed flight. While we were waiting the next day for another flight, we met & talked for hours with an Okinawan couple -- who we came to find out -- live down the street from us! We exchanged numbers, they called last night and asked to come to church with us & go out for sushi.  We're so excited.
 You just never know what the Good Lord could be up to. (:

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