Sunday, March 27, 2011

Sparkie Awana Program

Today was the Awana program at church. Amanda Lily's Sparkie troop practiced for months to present the church with a nice program. Oh, and I'm in the apron with bad hair because a few of the moms got together and made baked spaghetti, salad, and garlic bread to serve. The idea for the dinner show was that everyone who attended would donate a few bucks that our club will be sending to our sister club in Mexico. I'm not sure how much we raised, but I saw a couple $20's in the basket, and that made me happy. However, what made me the happiest (and very proud) was that my 6 year old had the courage to get up in front of everyone and play "Jesus Loves Me" on the piano as the closing "act" of the show. There were probably 150 people in the room, and she didn't think twice about it. She had practiced the song to death, so I guess that's why she had so much confidence. She sat down at the piano and started playing so quickly that I didn't get my camera turned on in time, but what I did get is sweet. Here's the short video clip for you family members in Greece......Enjoy!!!!

PS...Don't forget to scroll down to the bottom of my blog and pause the music, otherwise, you won't be able to hear her playing. Also, the button on the right makes it full screen, the one on the left is PLAY.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Makin Dough and Turkey Wraps

We decided not to take a Spring Break vacation this year, because we had LOTS going on in our family. George and I have been thinking about a boat ever since our family went out on the lake with our friends Dan and Jessica. Needless to she is. We are all THRILLED and have big plans for fun times and memories to be made. We took her out on her maiden voyage yesterday afternoon, and plan to take her out again this weekend. We've been trying to come up with a fun name and so far, my favorite is "Makin Dough". Pretty appropriate for an Italian Restaurant owner, huh? LOL I also like "Knot Workin" and Steven likes "The Big Kahuna" Any Ideas?

Here's a new recipe I plan on making this weekend to take on board for the family picnic. Our Fresh Lemonade and Greek Salad will definitely be included (if you want these recipes, click the link in the recipe sidebar)

Spread cranberry sauce onto a whole wheat pita, then add cooked turkey and shredded lettuce. Wrap it up and place a toothpick through the center to hold them together.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Fresh Lemonade

Things are warming up around our neck of the woods, and the children were just saying how they want to set up a Fresh Lemonade stand at the restaurant one day. I'll try and remember to come back here and add pictures and a story line to my blog afterwards. Anyhoo, I thought maybe some of you would like to give this one a try.

1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup boiling water
1 1/2 cups fresh squeezed lemon juice (6 to 8 large lemons)
5 cups cold water

Dissolve sugar in boiling water to make a simple syrup. Remove from heat. Add cold water and lemon juice. Refrigerate. Serve over ice. Garnish with fresh mint or lemon wedge.
PS..Do not use lemon juice from concentrate. You really must squeeze the lemons for a fresh lemonade!

Roasted Rosemary Chicken

I just realized that I don't have a few of my go to recipes listed on the sidebar of my blog. I need to get them posted, because I like using my blog instead of trying to remember which cookbook the recipe I need is in. (I have a vast collection of cookbooks that I LOVE)

One of our families very favorite is Rosemary Chicken. I remember making it while we were in Greece last summer, and George walking in the front door saying "smells like I'm home" It really is so very fragrant while cooking, and it's pretty much the only way I cook chicken, so this recipe is made often in the Kountanis home. Who can resist baked chicken?

Chicken legs and thighs (enough for your family)
4 cloves of garlic, peeled and sliced
1 lemon
2 TBSP olive oil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 Fresh rosemary springs, or a few pinches dried rosemary

Preheat oven to 425. Put chicken into dish in one layer, do not overcrowd. Cut lemon in half and squeeze out the juice over the chicken, then pour the oil over the top so the skin is evenly coated in liquid. Lightly pull up skin of chicken and stuff a couple slices of garlic under skin. Be careful not to tear skin, and place back over chicken. Sprinkle with 4 pinches of Sea Salt, and grind pepper mill to your taste. (I use about 5 turns of the mill in all) Finally, set a sprig of rosemary on the top of each piece of chicken, or sprinkle dried rosemary. Roast in oven for about 30 mins. As the chicken cooks, it becomes a crispy golden brown, surrounded by a light brown cooking juice gravy.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Art Fair 2011

Tonight, our son's school held their annual Art Fair. The kids all work hard on artwork, then it's all set up in the Gym as an Art Fair. Steven was very proud of his art. He only had one piece on display, because the kids have been working on the projects all year. Being that he started late, he missed out on the chance to make more than one piece. Of course, I loved it. Another part I loved was the singing. The kids from pre k on up thru 4th grade sang. Each grade took turns, and my heart was so happy to hear their young voices.
Amanda Lily had tons of fun catching up with old friends from Pre K, and got to meet her Teacher for next year. Ms Bierlin said that she felt like she already knew Amanda Lily from all the little girls talking about her. It made me feel good to know she will be going into a class where she will be welcomed with open arms by the Teacher and kids.'s the artwork, along with the proud artist!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Sunshine Day

Against our better judgement, Steven, Amanda Lily, and Tre' decided to take a chilly dip in the pool.It wasn't long before Tre' and Amanda Lily decided they didn't like the cold water and dried out in the hammock, while Steven lingered in the pool a while. Mom and I were close by, and spent most of the afternoon sipping iced tea and catching up. It's so nice having her back in town. I wish this Florida weather would make up it's mind and just get warm already!!!!