After a week or so of taking some tentative steps, the Monkey has been consistently getting more and more steady with his walk; here's proof:)
Sunday, March 20, 2011
Friday, March 11, 2011
I just finished reading "Unbroken" by Laura Hillenbrand. This book was so well-written that I finished it in about 3 days, I couldn't put it down! About a man named Louie Zamperini, this book tells an unbelievable story of his experiences as an Olympic runner, WWII solider, POW, and eventually, a Christian.
I must warn you, this book has parts that are hard to read, the torture and violence so many American POWs experienced in the war camps are sickening, but what a spotlight it puts on man's utter sin and total depravity and also on the divine power of redemption and forgiveness. I highly recommend it!
Sunday, March 6, 2011
We Sylvesters like to draw out birthday celebrations to last for a few days and Matt's birthday this year was no exception. We were able to celebrate his actual birthday with our beloved Small Group on Thursday by eating cupcakes and icecream sundaes, then Matt and I were able to celebrate just the two of us with dinner and a movie on Friday, and on Saturday we topped it all off with a nice family dinner. We love celebrating all the joyous occasions God has given us in this life to enjoy so we are thankful for times like these.
No, I did not make these. Matt's mom ordered these from a local bakery, very festive!
Decorations look familiar? Recycling is fun!
Icecream sundae bar; I love this idea for big group parties. Thanks to our Small Group who brought all the toppings!
The Birthday Boy
Enjoying the goods
Me and my handsome Hunny
For our family dinner we started out with: Baked Fontina (this was amazingly delicious - make it!) w/toasted baguettes, and Rosemary Bean Soup. Thanks to Ive who brought the yummy caprese salad. I forgot to take pics of the main entree but I made Penne Rustica, paying homage to my Macaroni Grill days. For the pasta, you will definitely want to cut down the butter in the recipe, I found that it was flavorful enough without the extra 6 ounces it calls for.
Barefoot Contessa’s Baked Fontina
Serves 4 – 6
(I baked them in individual ramekins even though this recipe says to do it in one big cast-iron skillet.)
1 1/2 pounds Italian Fontina, rind removed and 1-inch-diced
1/4 cup good olive oil
6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary leaves
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 crusty French baguette
Preheat the broiler and position the oven rack 5 inches from the heat.
Distribute the cubes of Fontina evenly in a 12-inch cast-iron pan. Drizzle on the olive oil. Combine the garlic, thyme, and rosemary and sprinkle it over the cheese and olive oil. Sprinkle with the salt and pepper and place the pan under the broiler for 6 minutes, until the cheese is melted and bubbling and starts to brown.
Serve the baked Fontina family-style — right out of the oven in the pan with bread for everyone to dip.
My first time making an icecream cake. I used boxed lemon cake ("What?!" you might be asking. Now I am all about trying to make most everything from scratch but I have to admit that I really like the taste of boxed cakes). I then layered it with vanilla icecream, frosted it with whipped cream mixed with fresh lemon curd and lemon zest, and garnished it with lemon curd and fresh strawberries. Quite tasty I must say!
Thursday, March 3, 2011
Some of the things that struck me the first time I met Matt was: 1. How cute he is, a blue-eyed, blonde-haired hottie! 2. How friendly and caring he is (he struck up a conversation with a stranger in line at Starbucks and ended up giving him the Gospel) 3. His sense of humor (I hadn't laughed like that in a long time, if ever). And you know what? The more I got to know him, all those qualities were only amplified, and even more amazing character traits came to light that made me love him more and more.
Matt is super modest and self-deprecating when it comes to himself so you wouldn't ever hear him tooting his own horn so that's why I'm going to do it! Matt loves the Lord more than anything or anyone else, made evident by his consistent obedience to God's word. He loves and reveres the Bible and has allowed it to dwell within him richly as he relies on it for life, wisdom, and hope. He has a massive heart for people and is constantly taking the time to strike up meaningful conversations with strangers, to call people up, to meet them for coffee, to invite them over for dinner, utilizing whatever means possible to reach out and to minister to whoever he can. He isn't quick to take offense and is not a man given to anger, but he overlooks insult easily, remains calm in the face of provocation, and forgives limitlessly. Matt is also so much fun, is silly, rolls around the floor with Jet, makes me laugh with just one look, and loves living life. I could go on and on and on but hopefully this gives you a taste of what an amazing man this is.
Baby, I am your biggest fan, the more I know you, the more I love and admire you. You are the greatest example of Christ to me and I can't believe that you have chosen me to be your bride and that I get to spend the rest of my life with you. You are the jackpot I feel like I won every morning when I wake up and look at you. I constantly gaze at you, marvelling at God's goodness by allowing me to marry the most handsome and admirable man I know. You are the best husband; you strive to love me as Christ loves the Church and you are the best Dad; you model true godliness for Jet (and our soon-to-be-born baby girl) to look up to and follow.
I love you more than I can ever say but may my actions succeed where my words may fail.
Happy, happy birthday my love. I love you, I love you, I love you.