Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The Perry's Eat! Our Favorite Garlic Chicken Pizza

Some foods fill your brain (and your mouth) with memories. The smell, the texture, the taste take you right back to a certain season of life. This pizza is one of those.

I was first taught how to make it by my sweet friend Crystal. During my last year of grad school we were two of the last of our college 'gang' to still be in town and we had a Friday night ritual of cooking dinner at my apartment and watching Friday night TV. I particularly remember Joan of Arcadia.... One night we made Chipotle copy cat (Before we had one in our college town), other nights fish tacos, and.... this pizza. I believe the recipe first came from our friend Letty (thanks Letty!). And after I got married the following fall it became a regular in our rotation. Last night as we were eating it my husband said all he could think of were our first few years of marriage in our first apartment, then our first house and lots of episodes of Smallville and Gilmore Girls. Ha! Apparently we watch TV when we eat this pizza :)

Well it was just as much of a hit last night as it was in those first few years and will definitely be making it's way back into my regular rotation!

I even found a decent crust that was easy and quick to throw together! Win! Win! I found the recipe for the crust here.



2 cups of unbleached self-rising flour*
2 Tbsp olive oil
6 Tbsp water
*Substitute 2 c. all-purpose flour + 1 tbsp baking powder + 1/2 tsp salt and increase water to 1/2 c. 


1/2 red onion
2 cloves garlic, pressed or 2 3 tsp. of minced garlic
Olive oil
2 chicken breasts sliced in thin strips
3 Tbsp parsley
2 c. mozzarella cheese

1. Preheat oven to 425°
2. Mix the flour, oil, and water together. The mixture will be flakey, so use your hands to form it together and shape into a ball. 
3. Cover with saran wrap and let it sit for 10 minutes.
4. While the dough is sitting heat a good dosing (3-4 Tbsp.) of olive oil in a frying pan. Sauté the onion and pressed garlic until the onion is soft and sweetened. Add the chicken and cook through. 
5. Grease 2 pieces of parchment paper and roll the dough out between the two. I ended up finishing the rolling without the parchment paper to get it thin enough. 
6. In a separate bowl combine the chicken/garlic/onion mixture with the parsley and half of the cheese. Spread on the crust distributing evenly over the entire surface. Top with the remaining cheese.
7. Cook in oven for 10-13 minutes or until crust is cooked through and cheese is bubbly. 

And Eat!

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Seriously, it's fantastic! Enjoy! 

Friday, October 25, 2013

It's Friday!

Hey there friends! I'm linking up with Lauren for High Five for Friday!

Sometimes we get a pause from ordinary life and get to step back and enjoy. Last weekend was just that! On Wednesday we thought our weekend plans were going to be thwarted by a stomach bug that hit my husband, but everyone woke up Thursday morning feeling great, so we finished packing our bags and headed up to the south side of Chicago where much of my family lives, praying that no one else would come down with anything! And this trip was a bit different than most. We had very few plans. Our only real objective was to visit a church that we've recently heard about near where my family lives. Other than that we just wanted to enjoy time with my family, and that we did!

1. Friday we hung out at my grandparents' farm. They have the most beautiful old Victorian home out in the country. My papa keeps Poll Herfeord Cattle and he and his son (my uncle) farm a lot of land out there. So we took the kids down to where my Uncle Craig was combining (is that a word?) and we all got a turn riding with him in the combine, watching it do its thing.

Isn't my gramma's place beautiful! It's one of my favorite places to be.

She was pretty excited about it :)

It really is incredible what this thing does..... it can separate all the corn kernels from the cobs and stalks and spits out all the unwanted stuff. Papa was telling me how when he was a boy they went through the fields two rows at a time with a horse and some kind of cart. It's amazing the transformation farming has gone through in the last 60 years! 

The kids loved watching it work! 

2 of my favorite people! I've always had such a soft spot in my heart for my Gramma! She was a huge influence on me as a girl in learning to appreciate the beauty around me in all of God's creation and the creativity of others. 

2. Friday night we got to eat at one of my fave pizza places growing up. We often visited it for family birthdays and such!

We had dinner with my sister Brooke and my step-dad John. It was great to see both of them and catch up a bit! 

Landon loves his Aunts! 

Then afterwards we headed to a local Starbucks and chatted for awhile about bee keeping, my step-dad's specialty. We had fun.


3. Saturday morning had more farm time filled with kittens and cows and it was the perfect medicine for this slightly weary family.

How stinkin' cute is this?!!

They chased these poor kittens all around the barn and I thought for sure one of them would fall and puncture themselves on some rusty something, but we managed out without any tetanus shots! Success!

I always love these climbing the fence shots at the farm. 

We got to spend a little time with my mom that morning. Can you believe that was about the best shot I got of the three of them. The littles weren't exactly in a sitting down mood. 

We enjoyed riding what Papa calls the 'Mule'. I don't know what it actually was... some kind of small tractor/riding little truck. I'm not sure. But we got to ride out to see another pasture of cows and let me tell you... they are so cute. I mean SO. Cute. I couldn't get any decent pictures, but they are such sweet animals. 

Later in the day I got to meet up with my college roommate from my freshman year of college at Baptist Bible College. She and her husband and 4 BOYS live outside of Seattle, so I haven't seen her since freshman year and randomly they were in town speaking at a Missions Conference at a church. So we ran up to catch up for a few minutes. We only got to talk briefly, but it was sweet to see her and April :) 

4. My great grandpa has sold the farm house he's lived in for the last 60ish years. So my gramma and her siblings have been cleaning it out. They have found so many fun old pictures! Looking back at your history and heritage is such a neat privilege that I know not everyone has. I was thrilled to find a few gems like these....

This was my great grandma (My maternal grandmother's mother). 

This was my mom and I when I was around 7 months old.  I was kind of a chunk here! 

Hands down my favorite. These 2 are my great-grandparents (my maternal grandmother's parents).  Isn't it precious!!  

5 generations and one of the youngest pics I've ever seen of myself. I was pleased to see that my daughter looked a bit like me as a baby. I've never been able to tell who she looked like! 

This is precious too. My grandmother's 17th Birthday party in the 1950's. Her sister is on the far left.

This one was so fun to me. My parents divorced when I was 4 so there really aren't a lot of memories or pics around of everyone together. This had both of them and my mom's parents and her paternal grandmother.  Pretty neat.... and my brother Aubrey is the spitting image of my dad :) 

This one was so cool too. Me (As a baby), my dad, his mom, and her mom (4 generations). And that dress my grandma is wearing... priceless!

5. Sunday was a wonderful day. We attended church in Northwest Indiana at a church we've recently become familiar with. If you're looking for a good place to learn and grow in Christ I highly recommend Bethel Church in Crown Point, IN (and they have a campus in Cedar Lake too!) 

We heard a wonderful gospel centered message, ate lunch at Portillo's a popular Chicago area restaurant, and headed downtown to visit my step-dad farmer's market in the Pilsen Community at 18th and Halstead where he sells his honey and jellies and jams... and eggs... and all kinds of stuff. 

He calls himself the King Bee. I don't know how that name got started but it fits him perfectly. He had 11 of these shirts made with little honey bees all over them. He's kept bees for as long as I can remember and I'm glad he's been able to make such a nice business out of it. 


My kids kind of love the city too. Landon tends to come alive as you can see.... well both of them do.


Seriously my favorite place on earth. 

After hanging out with my step-dad for a bit we headed to the north side of the city to visit with my brother. After graduating from the Illinois Institute of Technology he got a job in the city and has made a nice life for himself there. The kids loved hanging out with Uncle Preston! 

We took a walk AROUND THE CORNER to my little slice of Heaven on Earth.... Target of course. 

Chris snapped this shot of me looking around. Clearly I'm excited. 2 whole stories of Target goodness!

Preston got right on down and hung out with the kids. Of course they loved it. 

We walked around the back side of his street to a fun little city park where the kids had a ball playing and running all their energy out !

Ok so this whole Friday post is about last weekend, but it was just that good. And this week has just been work, not as exciting :) 

Thanks for looking at this glimpse into our weekend and thank you to our family for allowing us to crash in your homes and hanging out with us. We love seeing you!

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Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Things I'm reading and Loving!

Here are a few links to things I've been reading over the last week that have caught my attention....

1. I've been concerned about healthy food for awhile. When I was pregnant with my first I started reading more and more about food, and while I've always enjoyed a pretty healthy diet, I became a bit more passionate about it, both for myself, as well as for the rest of the family. Sugar is something I still battle with finding a balance in.... and I think these sugar rules might be a good idea.

2. Even when life presents some struggles, and let's face it, every day has them, I've been learning over the last several years to enjoy the ride. We've been walking through some passages in Eccelesiastes lately and talking about the 'portion' that God gives us. Everything we have materially, and even just our circumstances are our portion from God. And He wants us to enjoy it. We see in Romans 8 that through all of it He is growing us into the image of His son, Jesus Christ. This little statement reminded me of all that today.


3. I can't agree more with Trevin Wax, that we shouldn't give our kids trophies for losing. I stand on the sidelines even at my 4 year olds t-ball games wondering why on earth we don't keep track of the score. I want to be able to congratulate my boy on his hard work.... but it never comes....  It seems so silly and I don't think it teaches them to work hard for success. They feel like everyone is successful, which isn't at all the case in real life. Good read.

4. Do you ever fall prey to the mommy wars? The comparison games of mom vs. mom? The ultra fit mom vs. the crunchy mom vs. the cloth diapering mom vs. the crafty mom..... I want to be all of those on any given day and it's so easy to compare myself against all of these other women. This response points moms to the right place.... Christ... to find their sense of identity so that we don't have to compare ourselves against each other.

5. I thought Tim Challies did a great job here of pointing out some of the ways that women tend to take a second glance.

6. I love this curtained idea for covering a closet, especially in a little girl's room.

7. This coat has me swooning!


Friday, October 11, 2013

It's Friday Friends!

Can't believe my crazy week of being ALONE with the kids went by so fast, and so without a hitch! Before my husband left bright and early last Saturday morning I had been struggling in my inner woman with my kids..... letting their frustrations frustrate me. Not good for a week alone with the kids, and one in which they'd be joining me at the office more often than not. So I knew I had to repent of my selfish attitude and change my perspective fast! Thankfully, the Lord changed my heart, and the kids and I had a great week while the hubs was in Alabama for the NANC/ACBC Conference!

And it's once again time for my High Five for Friday post, linking up with The Lauren Elizabeth!

1. I've had a heart for Biblical Counseling since my senior year of college. God opened my eyes to the sufficiency of His Word through an Apologetics course with Dr. Christopher (info for the BBC alum who are readers), and the counseling and theology courses I took over the next few years with Dr. Kevin Carson and Dr. Wayne Slusser, and others as I completed my Master's Degree in Biblical Counseling dramatically changed my life and perspective. The Holy Spirit made something click in my brain that never had before. The Gospel literally changes everything, starting with my heart, and He instilled in me a passion for women and girls to know God's Word and to let it change them that has yet to quiet down. Chris has a similar passion (although not aimed at girls in particular as mine is;) and I was excited when he was given the opportunity to go to this year's NANC (National Association of Nouthetic Counseling) Conference. It was somewhat of a historic event as they changed the name of NANC To ACBC (Association of Certified Biblical Counselors), and he was honored to be there for the decision. We have plans to work on our certification over the next year. We both have all the training completed, and just need to test and be observed. I've been counseling girls and women in our church's Biblical Counseling Ministry for the last 6 years, so it will be nice to have that certification completed! I love that he was able to go and be inspired and have fellowship with one of our pastors the head of our counseling ministry!

2.  You already know all about the little lady's 3rd Birthday Bash, but did you know my little man helped make the cup cakes? Can I just squeeze him? He asked if he could help. He loves his little sis so much!

3.  This isn't the greatest pic, but post party I turned her big '3' made out of Instagram pics into a heart for her room. I love having some new pics up in her room for her to enjoy!

4. While the hubs was gone I tried to get the kids out and enjoy the incredible weather we've had over the last week.... it's finally starting to feel a bit like fall! I caught this pretty pic along a local river and it had an almost magical feel to it. They both are growing so fast and they love taking bike rides. I'm gonna need to get my own soon to keep up with them!

They got to come with me a few times to work with this week and I made sure to get them out to the park for a mid day lunch break. This little lady loves to swing! 

She also enjoys a good ride through the car wash. (That makes my week sound fascinating huh :) 

5. And then there was this..... how on earth could I make them stay in their own bed when daddy was gone. It was a camp out with mommy this week! 

All in all I hada  great time this week hanging with the kids and snagging some extra time with them. Thank you Lord for changing my perspective and allowing me to enjoy this beautiful season of life! 

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