22 December 2011

merry merry.

this has been my best holiday season to date. aren't the holidays about a billion times better with kids? we are busy christmas-ing with our families this week - soaking in loads of love, savoring yummy food, snuggling by the fire and bobbing our heads to lots of christmas music (noah especially).

hope your holidays are merry and bright.

peace and love,
the nelson family

28 November 2011

coconut macaroons.

i experimented with these cookies a couple of weeks ago, and was pleased with the end result. i always have coconut around the house, and thought these would make a tasty treat. and the coconut oil gives them a delicious, buttery flavor. they can be eaten raw, but i think best straight out of the oven, toasty and warm. fast, easy and delicious.

*try dipping the macaroons in chocolate for a more decadent treat...

coconut macaroons
{could-be raw, vegan and gluten-free}

2 cups finely shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
1 1/2 cups almond or coconut flour
1/2 cup agave syrup (or can use honey)
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1/4 cup brown rice syrup (or maple syrup would work as well)
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp almond extract
1/4 tsp salt

combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix together until evenly combined.

using a small ice cream scoop, scoop mixture and press in tightly. remove macaroon from scoop, and press together to form a well-formed macaroon with a rounded top.

can be placed in the fridge at this point, and eaten raw....or place in a oven preheated to 375 degrees and cook for 10 minutes or until the tops are golden brown.

enjoy. xo.

16 November 2011

fourteen months.

our darling boy, you are fourteen months. it seems like such a mouthful. fourteen! today a friend of ours commented on how big you are getting. she told me that you are not a baby anymore. even though you may not look it, i respectfully disagree. you will always be my baby.

our piles of baby clothes get bigger every day, and it tugs at my heart just a little as now that i shop for you, nothing looks like a baby anymore. gone are the baby blues and baby yellows. even the onesies are few and far between. i call them big boy clothes, and you look like such a big boy in them. and your feet! oh, they are such a big size six. and it's hard to find a pair that fit. but we finally caved and bought you some real shoes. with real soles. for real running and real climbing, and all sorts of big boy activities.

you love to copy and imitate everything we do. and you have become such a helper around the house. you love to hand me the pillows while making the bed in the morning. you help me put away the laundry, and vacuum the floor. and when we cook dinner, you insist on holding your own spoon or spatula, and i love watching you tap, tap, tap and stir away.

though you only have a few words in your vocabulary, you have a way of communicating that makes perfect sense to me. i can always tell exactly what you want. and you are determined. you'll grab me by the hand, and pull me down to the ground, letting me know you want to play. you point with persistence, and get excited to show us everything. the birds in the sky. the cars driving by. blinking lights. you are curious and interested in everything. wanting to know what everything is, and how you can get a hold of it. and i take any chance i can to get you to hold my hand. i'll hold mine out, and you'll wrap your sweet little fingers around mine...melting my heart every single time. but you also love walking on your own, and exploring everything around you. you have something which we call your confident strut. you'll walk fast and with a smirk on your face, swinging your arms around - like you've been doing it for years.

you love to make us laugh. you love tricking me by pretending that you are about to throw me the ball, but then will quickly hid it behind you back. you play peek-a-boo and love falling back into the pile of pillows on our bed. always with a big, "whoooaaaaa, " just to see our reaction. our very new favorite trick is when we tell you to jump. you'll squat on those sweet little chubby legs, and with a grunt, pop up quickly and throw your arms high above your head. for all you know, you've just jumped a million feet in the air. it's the cutest thing in the world.

and you dance. it wasn't a common occurrence at first, just once in a while. but now, every time you hear even the slightest hint of music, you'll get a big, toothy grin on your face, and your head will start bobbing. your arms start swinging. in the home, in the car, it doesn't matter. you love music and you love to move.

you amaze us every day with how much you know. i'll ask you to point to something, or to hand something to daddy, just out of habit, and i'm always so shocked by when you actually do something i say. you are a sponge, and so very, very smart.

your personality is full of sunshine and happiness, and we love how much of that you bring into our lives.

we love you so much for being you.

happy fourteen months baby boy!


**miss months 12 and 13? catch up on them right here and here.

03 November 2011

award winning chili.

i think the last time i took home a trophy was for recreational soccer when i was 8. and even then, i'm pretty sure they gave one to everyone in the league. we were all mvp's.  so you can understand why this is a pretty big deal to me.

this chili is so so good. and so so easy to make. my poor husband had to serve as recipient of this chili as i tweaked and tested multiple times, which resulted in a week and a half of the same dinner every single night, and he didn't complain once.

and the weather is really cooling down here, making it finally feel like fall. it is such a warm, comforting time of year, and the perfect time for soups and chili's. so make this. you'll want to eat the leftovers (if there are any) for every meal. guilty as charged.

creamy white chicken chili.
serves 4
1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast, cubed (i just diced up a rotisserie chicken)
1 medium onion, diced
1 T olive oil
2 cans cannellini beans
14.5 ounces chicken broth
2 4.5 ounce cans chopped green chilies
1 tsp salt
1 1/2  tsp cumin
1 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp cayenne
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup half & half
8 ounces reduced fat sour cream

heat the oil in a large pot over medium high heat. add the chicken and chopped onion and saute for about six minutes, or until the chicken is seared and the onion is translucent. add the garlic and cook for another three minutes.

add the beans, spices, chicken broth and green chilies and bring to a boil. reduce heat and simmer for thirty minutes.

turn off the heat and add the sour cream and half & half. serve with shredded cheddar cheese an a little more sour cream to top it off.

and if you live in texas you must go to central market immediately and buy these chips to serve with the chili. amazing. if you don't? sorry.

enjoy! xo.

31 October 2011


i certainly haven't been blogging. i've actually been on a bit of a technology-hiatus (except for instagram, of course), and it's been kind of lovely. i've had very few days surfing the internet. very few days of pinning, and even fewer of blog-surfing. but its always nice to step away for awhile, and then come back. it's like meeting back up with an old friend and catching up on life.

baby noah and i have fallen into a nice routine over the past weeks and are enjoying the under-80 degree weather that dallas is so graciously giving us. we meet up with a couple of our good friends for walks every morning, always ending in a play date at the park. noah loves the park. it's so fun to watch him explore and play. he's so comfortable with his body, and i continue to watch in amazement as he pulls himself up onto the playground toys, and slide down the slides (always insisting on doing it himself). he has moved into toddlerhood full-speed and it is my favorite stage yet. he's a little sponge, our boy, and mimics everything i do. he is quite the little helper around the house, wanting to put away the laundry, help me cook dinner (with his own spoon/spatula/whisk), help me shop by putting/throwing the groceries into the cart, and his very new favorite...vacuuming.

i've been baking batches and batches of pumpkin bread as well. i always feel like it is a good sign to be baking lots though. it is no secret that it is my favorite time of year to be doing it, but it is also a sign that we have more people to give it away to. more friends, and more special people in our life that i want to bake for. because nothing says true friendship like baked goods. am i right?

we enjoyed a chili-cook-off and trunk-or-treat with many of these said friends this past week. noah, dressed up like a bear (cortney says grizzly, i say teddy), loved passing out the candy to all of the kids. cortney loved taste-testing all the chili. which mine, might i add, happened to take top-prize of the night. it came with a trophy and everything. i promise to post the recipe soon. it will definitely be a fall/winter staple in our household.

we are happy in our home, and happy that the holidays are upon us. they really kind of snuck up on us, don't you think??

happy monday. xo.

27 October 2011

pouty face.

the scrunched up nose, puckered lips...the squinty eyes. all accompanied by a little grunt. this new look is making an appearance a lot these days.

though he may be pouting, i'm still obsessed with it. makes me laugh every time.

25 October 2011

he turned one.

oh...didn't i tell you? of course not, i've got about a million things to catch up on. including month 12 and 13. wow, when did those fly by? i'm lagging in the blogging department these days. but he did turn one. and he was adorable and it was fabulous.

here is a peek of how we celebrated...