Sunday, May 19, 2019

Birds and Blooms #6

A pleasant afternoon while we took a break from packing suitcases. I was easily entertained by the female wren taking sticks out of the wren house and tossing them to the ground. We sat outdoors soaking up the sun and enjoying 87 degree temperatures while it lasted. We won't see that again for a while. 

The male wren will claim a nesting spot with nothing more than a few twigs and a bit of white cottony spider egg material. When a female chooses one of the offered sites, it is not unusual for the building process to start almost from scratch. The female wren will sometimes throw out some of the male’s sticks, because they're too big and hard to work with. Females use smaller, more manageable sticks that can be shaped into a cup. 

Thanks for stopping by! I just can't get enough of these blooms and birds this spring :-) We even had butterflies today, but it moved too quickly to be photogrphed. 

Friday, May 17, 2019

Strawberry Balsamic Chicken

Yes, there is chicken underneath all those luscious strawberries. My nephew and his wife invited their parents over for a Mother's Day dinner, and served this delicious chicken dish with  side of riced cauliflower. I made our side dish with quinoa since that is what I had on hand. I do love riced cauliflower. The strawberries came from California, and were gigantic and sweet.  Use the BEST balsamic you can get your hands on. We used the balsamic we got in Modena last year. 

Home Cookin Chapter: Deb's New Recipes

4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves, trimmed
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons cool water
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/2 jalapeno pepper diced if you like spicy flavors
1-1/2 cups Strawberries, cut in half or quarters

Preheat the oven to 375 Fahrenheit

Trim the chicken breast, salt and pepper both sides.
Heat olive oil in a skillet and brown both sides of the chicken.

Place browned chicken breasts on a baking sheet.

In a medium sauce pan mix the balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, Dijon 
mustard, salt and pepper. Heat on medium high and turn off.

Mix the water and cornstarch together in a small bowl and set aside.

Bring the balsamic vinegar mixture to a boil. Add the cornstarch and 
water mixture to the sauce pan and return to a boil. Boil until 
slightly thickened and remove from the heat.

Add the strawberries and the diced pepper to the sauce pan and mix.

Pour the balsamic sauce mixture over the chicken trying to cover the 
chicken completely.

Place the baking sheet in the oven and bake for 15 minutes on 375 
Fahrenheit. Optional: Once done, you can put the baking sheet under the 
broiler so the chicken and strawberries are slightly roasted.

Serve the Strawberry Balsamic Chicken over a bed of cooked Quinoa.

Servings: 4

Exported from Home Cookin 6.46 ( hubby gave it five stars (well six if he could)

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

The {belated} Easter table

We had 10 adults and two littles at the table this year but I never got around to posting photos. Easter is so easy and joyful for me. My dining room walls have changed since last Easter as you can see in the photo below. We removed the pussywillow wallpaper that everyone enjoyed over the years. I felt it was time for a new clean look. We chose Bottlenose Dolphin (Valspar) for the dining room walls.
In this photo, you will see the pussywillow wallpaper from Easter 2018. My special blog friend Kitty recently asked me about our dining room renovation, and since it has been one year since we completed it, I thought I would share it. 
Our "Mountain Breaths" cheese board, which we serve every time we have guests. I bought this beautiful board from a blog friend three years ago. 
Another view of the Bottlenose Dolphin (Valspar) color on the walls. 
Two cuties...Lily and Xavier sitting on the steps on a warm Easter Sunday. Thank you for stopping by!

Monday, May 13, 2019

Enjoying Spring Blooms #5 {and planting trees}

Well let me tell you that Saturday was beautiful, but Mother's Day was soooo cold and rainy that I wore gloves and boots. I am in love with all the blooms this spring, and the tulips are lasting a long time due to the cool weather. 
 This is my neighbor Sharon's flowering crabapple tree. I look forward to seeing the vibrant pink buds on this lovely tree in bloom every spring. 
This is the same tree, in full bloom with fairy lights in the evening. 
  My husband is going to be busy planting trees at camp this week :-) The bugs are already very bad in the Adirondacks so he will wear his bug net. 
Every spring my next door neighbor Isabelle allows me to take hens and chickens from her rock border where she must have 1,000. She is 96 and no longer gardens so this is maintenance free for her.
Flowering crabapple tree at my next door neighbor's home. 
Soccer season started last weekend so we watched our three year old grandson Xavier play on Saturday, and he seems to enjoy competing. 
Hope all the mom's had a wonderful Mother's Day. We went to the annual fundraiser for Baltimore Woods in the morning, and Chef Joe grilled a wonderful dinner in the evening. 

Thank you for stopping by!

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Enjoying Spring Blooms (and Birds) #4

I look forward to "my" wrens returning each spring :-) And always just before Mother's Day. 

"Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it."  

My goal is to take photos of spring blooms weekly so I have a record on my blog. This week is a mixture of blooms and birds. I also included a photo of my Jeep tire cover that makes everyone smile. 


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