Thursday, May 24

:: Preschool Graduation, Artichoke Feta Salad & A Sweet Little Face ::

 My little Energetic Elephant graduated from preschool (sniff! sniff!).  It was the cutest graduation ceremony I have ever seen.  Every student got to come to the microphone and tell the audience what they want to be when they grow up.  His Dad couldn't have been more proud when Parrish announced that he would like to be a "hunter"!  Ha!  The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.  I joked with friends that one day he could have his own hunting show and then wouldn't he just show us all that hunting can be a profession after all.
 One of the songs they sing in chapel each week is "My God Is So Big, So Strong, So Mighty, There's Nothing My God Cannot Do"  They acted out the song as they sang.  Parrish was the valley and the poster was so big I was a little afraid it may not make it up above his head, but my little strong man managed.
They even got diplomas from the pastor and were rewarded with titles from their teachers.  Parrish was "Most Imaginative" and I think his teachers know him well.  I tell him all the time that one of my favorite things about him is his ability to imagine and dream big.  I hope he never looses that gift!

When I went through the carpool line yesterday at Tiny Blessings I couldn't believe it was the last time and I was going to be the mom of a Kindergartener.  Once again the thought struck me that things aren't as they should be.  I should still be going to Tiny Blessings next year to take Livy to preschool.  Which of course made his last day as a preschooler all the more emotional for me.  But, we survived and are today in the midst of one of our "pajama days" where Parrish and I stay in our jammies until lunch and watch movies, play play doh, get messy in the kitchen, and generally do whatever we want.  I realize these days are going to be fewer and farther between when he starts "big school" in the fall so I am soaking it all in now.  When I look back I am so thankful that I have gotten to spend these last 5 years at home with him because it really does go by too fast.

 Last weekend we went to the lake with the Browns for Mother's Day and although it rained most of Saturday morning the first break in the clouds, Cannon and Karl had Trotter and Parrish out on the lake and skiing behind the sea doo.  Their little teeth were chattering they were so cold, but they were having too much fun to stop.  I think they skied 5 times each before calling it quits.  We're so proud of our little skiers!!

While we were there Nancy served a greek artichoke salad from Catherine's Market that was super delicious.  I scoured the internet to try to find the exact recipe to no avail, but I did make up my own version that is just about as good.

Artichoke and Feta Salad

1 can quartered artichoke hearts (drained)
Chopped green, red, orange, and yellow bell peppers (I like to buy the tri-pepper mix in the pre-chopped section of Publix when I'm in a hurry)
Feta cheese (crumbled)
Chopped green onions
Chopped red onion

Mix all ingredients together and marinade in dressing (recipe below).

1/3 c. olive oil
2 tbsp. red wine vinegar
4 tsp. lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. pepper

Mix all dressing ingredients together and combine well.  Top salad mixture with dressing and marinade for at least 1 hour (the longer the better - this is a great salad to make the night before or to prepare to bring on your summer beach vacation)  

Note: Add tri-colored pasta and cooked chicken or shrimp and this easily goes from a side dish to a main lunch entree.  I added pasta and serve alongside grilled fish last night and it was yummy.

Cannon and I signed up for our local CSA to receive weekly delivery of fresh, local, and organic veggies and fruit.  Last week we got our first box from Moore Farms and I have really enjoyed learning to cook new things like Red Russian Kale.  I would never have purchased that on my own, but when it comes in the box it makes you learn about it and how to cook it.  I was surprised at how easy this was to cook and by how much we all loved it (Parrish included).  I used a recipe from the internet here and used pistachio nuts and cannelloni beans and some of the herbed olive oil we bought at Pepper Place last weekend.  

Next week in addition to the usual, yummy, summer staple veggies we will get Kohlrabi - which I've never even heard of - but am excited to try.  

Monday we went to my 28 week doctor's appointment and got to see this sweet little face.  He looks a lot like Parrish and Olivia did at this point on sonogram.  We're thinking he's going to have lots of hair like Parrish if the old wives tale about heart burn is true.  I had it bad with Parrish and he came out looking like a little lion with tons of black hair that stuck up every which way.  I didn't have heartburn with Livy and she did have hair, but not nearly as much as Mr. P.  So we will see.  A little under 3 months to go!

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