Feta-Herb Edamame Succotash (with bacon)

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I’m a sucker for a tasty salad and summer is the best time to make them!  I’ve been pulling recipes for yummy summer salads out of magazines for the last few weeks.  This is the first one I’ve tried.  This recipe uses fresh and frozen ingredients, so it’s the best of both worlds.  It’s from Cooking Light, so it’s intended to be healthy, but I added bacon. And it is divine! It was nice and fresh and bright without the bacon, but I thought, “Why not?” So, I did. And praise the lard, it is wonderful!

Here is the cast of characters, plus a rogue cucumber who wasn’t supposed to be in the photo:

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  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped (approximately 1 cup)
  • 2 c. frozen shelled edamame, thawed
  • 1 1/2 c. frozen corn kernals, thawed (I used white corn, strictly a personal preference.)
  • 1 c. grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
  • 1 oz. feta cheese, crumbled (1/4 cup)
  • 2 T. chopped fresh dill (Publix was out, so I just used dried from my pantry. Dried herbs are more potent than fresh, so use less than 2 T. if you go this route.)
  • 2 T. chopped parsley
  • 2 T. sherry vinegar (I keep pomegranate infused red wine vinegar in my pantry for splashing on salads, so I used this instead.)
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 1/4 t. freshly ground black pepper
  1. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high. Add oil to pan and saute onion.  Cook until tender, stirring occasionally, about 4 minutes.
  2. Add edamame; cook, stirring constantly, 2 minutes. Add corn; cook, stirring constantly, 2 minutes.  Remove from heat and allow to cool, approximately 10 minutes.  Stir in tomatoes, feta, dill, parsley, vinegar, salt, and pepper.
  3. If desired, garnish with bacon.  I wouldn’t add the bacon to the dish because it will become soggy.

This would be perfect for a summer barbecue or even to keep in the fridge for a quick lunch or snack.  The edamame adds protein, so it can be a meal on it’s own.  I’ll definitely be making this one again!

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Jolee Island

We first discovered Jolee Island at the Sandestin Beach Resort when William was much younger. We instantly fell in love with the quiet serene environment and the multiple trails that lead to swings and play areas and to the smooth waters of Horseshoe Bayou. We’ve visited there many times through the years and for his 10th birthday, a friend and I brought William and nine of his closest friends down from Andalusia for the day.


I’ve mentioned the island to Henry and Massey and they have been excited about visiting the “Pirate Island” themselves. We try to make the most of every weekend and for own sanity, we have to get out and get active. Yesterday morning, Will suggested taking everyone to Jolee Island and then Roberto’s Pizzeria (where I had a Groupon) for lunch.

After dressing the younger boys in pirate ship and nautical themed outfits (of course!), we loaded up and drove down to Sandestin. Jolee Island is on the left, before you get to The Village of Baytowne Wharf.

After parking, you cross over a salt marsh and descend onto the island.

 

Henry has to be first in everything he does, so he and Daddy ran ahead of us and then had to wait for us to catch up to them.
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Jolee Island is situated in Horseshoe Bayou and is adjacent to the Baytowne Marina
There are numerous trails or paths to take to explore.

You would have thought we had come up on an actual pirate ship when the boys saw this play structure.

There are swings all over the island for those who like to sit and enjoy nature. Our boys don’t allow for much sitting.

William and Massey spotted a black rabbit eating in the shadows and stopped to watch him for a bit.
This cute little playhouse is nestled in the palms along one of the paths.
This gorgeous piece of driftwood had washed up on the shore.
The boys found crabs and sea snails along the water’s edge.
Even our biggest boy enjoyed exploring and looking for natural treasures.
There is another play structure with a crow’s nest and swing by the water.
Massey loves ‘cheesing’ for the camera. Another family was there enjoying a picnic.

 

The boys weren’t ready to leave, but lunch was calling our names!
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A rare moment of sitting AND being in front of the camera!

I recommend Jolee Island to anyone who is staying in the area and wants to have a break from the Gulf for a few hours.  Bring swimsuits, pack a lunch, slow down, and rediscover nature. Civilization is right around the corner, but sometimes it’s nice to just enjoy one another and explore!

 

Chicken Fettucine Alfredo

I’ve never made homemade Alfredo sauce. I’ve always bought the premade refrigerated ones from the grocery store. On a whim, I decided to give it a shot. I ran in Modica Market while in Seaside yesterday and grabbed Parmesan and heavy cream. I found a recipe online for the Olive Garden Alfredo recipe. I started using that one, but then went rogue, as I so often do. Here is the version I adapted myself:

I trimmed, salted, and peppered a package of chicken breasts and then sautéed them in a little olive oil and butter. I let them sit for a few minutes and then sliced them.

In the meantime, I assembled this cast of characters:

Not pictured are the minced garlic, the whole milk, and the cream cheese.

I sautéed the garlic in a stick of butter, then added 2 cups of heavy cream and 1 1/2 cups of milk, whisking constantly. As that incorporated into the butter, I tossed in 1 cup of the Italian cheese blend, and and 1 1/2 cups of the Parmesan shavings. I adjusted the heat so that the sauce didn’t scorch, continued whisking, and then as the cheese melted, tossed in 4 oz of cream cheese. I whisked until everything was melted and smooth, then removed it from the stove. The sauce will thicken slightly upon standing.

We served it over warm fettucine noodles. It was delicious! I try not to eat a lot of pasta, but it was so hard to hold myself back from gobbling up a huge bowl and then chasing it down with a glass of the sauce! I want to try making pasta myself. Does anyone do this? I’ve looked at the pasta attachment for my Kitchen Aid mixer, but haven’t taken the plunge yet.

Adventures in Seaside

Today is the first day of summer break. What 14 year old boy doesn’t want to be awakened at 8:00 and told, “Come on, Wimma. We are walking (2 miles) to Seaside and you are going with us!?!” I know one that doesn’t…but he went anyway! The idyllic town of Seaside has always been a favorite of mine. I’ve loved it ever since I first set foot there back in high school.  No matter how many times I visit, I never tire of the picturesque houses, gorgeous streets, unique shops, and delicious restaurants.  The temperature this morning was in the mid-70’s, so rare for a late May morning in Florida.  I loaded the little ones in the stroller, twisted the arm of the biggest boy, and we were on our way! The new pedestrian/bike bridges over Western Lake are so nice! The boys especially like pressing the button to warn cars that we are crossing 30A!

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Our first stop in Seaside was Natchez Park. I didn’t know this tranquil spot existed until right after we moved down here in August.  It’s tucked into a back corner and is so quiet and there is also SHADE!!!  My favorite part of the park is the giant sundial.  IMG_9063

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The boys love climbing on the ziggurat and playing King of the Triangle!IMG_9062IMG_9064

We often bring dump trucks and sand toys and they will sit and play for as long as I let them. We decided to load back up into the stroller and head over to the grassy area in front of the Chapel.

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After running and playing and moving lots of gravel, we walked on over to the playground/park. We held Henry’s birthday party there back in December.  There is a play structure, a basketball court, a tether ball area, swings, and monkey bars.  It’s also SHADED!!!  It’s adjacent to two of the pools, croquet lawn, volleyball area, and tennis courts.  There’s pretty much something for everyone there!

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After playing for a while, we decided to stop by the Raw and Juicy Airstream for a Valencia Orange and a Pina Verde.  Their juices are freshly squeezed and will always hit the spot when you need to be replenished.  The Health Insurance shot has helped prevent a full blown sinus infection on more than one occasion for me! It’s highly recommended!

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Massey enjoyed his juice from the comfort of his stroller because he fell and skinned his knee on the way to the Seaside Square. Poor fellow falls and skins his knee every few days.  Those little legs want to run a little faster than that little body can go.

Stay tuned for more Proctor Family Outings now that school is out and we aren’t tied down by nap times and school pick up times!

A Very Personal Story from My Past

I shared my story about my first marriage over on the Destin30MomsBlog today.  It’s not something that very many people know about.  Domestic violence isn’t something that is discussed publicly.  I became very skilled at living a double life.  If you or anyone you know is in a marriage or a relationship where they’re in danger emotionally or physically, please encourage them to GET OUT! 

Blue and White Summer Dresses

I recently attended a photo shoot for the Destin30aMomsBlog contributors. We were instructed to wear blue and white or pink and white. I don’t think I own any pink! I found several options of blue and white in my closet.  My favorite thing to throw on in the summer is an easy and comfortable dress.  Here are a few of my favorites:

do+be

This one is by Do+be and was purchased at Willow+Mercer. It’s a great material that will work all the way through the fall.

clothandstone

This soft frayed denim dress is by Cloth and Stone and was purchased at Anthropologie.

jcrewembossed

One of my all time favorite places to shop is J.Crew. This cute embossed strap is available there.

tommybahama

I saw this one recently while eating lunch at Tommy Bahama in Grand Boulevard and fell in love with it.

kendra

Who doesn’t love a fun Lilly Pulitzer print in the summer? There is so much more to Lilly than the traditional pink and green!

This Blog

This blog will be about me. My family. Us. I will probably cover random topics that make up who I am and who we are. Things like food. Shopping. Family outings.