Monday, June 29, 2015

Grilling 101

We are in the midst of the Arizona summer heat.  Last week we even had a few 115 degree days.  Blah.  But, it's something I've become accustom to, and the trade off we make for our beautiful winters.  Whenever possible, I try not to heat up my oven.  I love to grill, especially in the summer.  I thought I would share a few of our favorite recipes and tips I've discovered.

Presoak the wooden skewers in water for 15 minutes before grilling so they keep your food in place and don't disintegrate.  I always get the peeled and deveined shrimp. Frozen or fresh are both good. Typical cooking time when placing directly on the grill (on a skewer) is around four minutes (on a medium flame).  
Here are two of our favorite shrimp marinade recipes...

Buy a grill basket. So functional, just don't forget to stir and toss veggies frequently while grilling so they don't burn.  
My favorite recipes for veggies…
*I omit the sweet potato…it cooks too slowly and other veggies are done sooner.  If cooking potatoes in a grill basket, cook separately. 

This is our super easy, super tasty cooking method. 
Place Salmon in a shallow, open tinfoil bed.  Drizzle on olive oil and the juice of one fresh lemon.  Then shake on a light sprinkling of Lawry's Garlic Salt (to taste).  I usually cook about a 1 lb. fillet.  It typically takes about 15-25 minutes to cook through, depending on thickness. When it no longer looks translucent, and it's pink and flaky, it's done. 

Since I usually serve one or more of the above with chicken, I keep my chicken grilling simple and use cheats like these…Stubbs' All Natural Spice Rub  or Chef Paul Prudhomme's Poultry Magic and for easy pre made marinades my family likes all of the McCormick grill mates.
For cooking chicken breasts I always butterfly them (side ways) so they're thinner and cook more evenly and quickly.  Typically I cook each side for about six minutes.

 Bon Apetite!

Saturday, June 27, 2015


In response to the supreme court's decision yesterday, I will simply say this.  My heart absolutely aches for the thousands and potentially hundreds of thousands of children in the future who will never know what it means to have a mom. I believe with all my heart, that there is no replacement for this unique and powerful relationship.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Kauai, Hawaii

Warning: photo overload. But it was Hawaii after all.

inland exploring

a helicopter ride

beach pics

ocean time

surf time

kayaked in the rain

and then hiked to this waterfall

 with Cole, the nicest guide ever, sporting this super legit man-bun


It was a great week of being together.  And, just like all families, by day seven, my kids were ready for a little less "together" time as witnessed from the comments coming from the back of our mini-van…

Sierra, "When I think of Sadie getting mad, I think of a squeaky mouse getting poked with a fork"

(and before I can even reprimand or redirect)

Gentry chimes in, "When I think of Sierra getting mad, I think of fork going into a toaster."

(and then I couldn't even reprimand, because I was laughing too hard)

And one last pic for this post  
It's become a familiar site these last two years…Sadie preparing to leave. Tomorrow she returns to BYU for the summer term. Saying goodbye still always makes me sad, but of course, this will be much different then her mission.  Now, she's a phone call or text away.  
And life moves on...