July 18, 2010

Summer Grilling

Tom and I bought a grill this summer and love it! I especially love it because we can have home-cooked meals without making our kitchen so hot. It is miserable to cook in there during the summer. It also saves us money on our gas bill, since our electricity is always higher during the summer in order to run our window-unit air conditioner. We bought a small, table top grill so that we can take it with us on our camping trips. Camping is WAY UP THERE on my list of things to do this summer...we'll see!

Last night's meal was probably our favorite meal so far. We grilled:

*Lemon-Herb Pork Chops--marinated them in olive oil, lemon juice, and rubbed on some garlic, oregano, parsley, sea salt, and ground black pepper. The secret was rubbing on some Rocky Mountain Seasoning from Pensey's. SO GOOD!

*Seasoned Apples--core the apples and fill with a little butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, and then top with a few drops of water and seal in tin foil to throw on the grill for about 30 minutes. SO EASY and delicious!

I also made brown jasmine rice and green beans that I seasoned with Northwoods Spice from Pensey's, using the stove. I had a Fat Tire (my favorite beer) and Tom had a Heineken. It was such a fun night to sit at the dinner table, talk, and listen to some records. We both agreed that it was even better than the night before, where we went out to dinner. Sometimes it is so easy when we are at home to eat dinner in the living room and watch a movie or tv show on the internet. Sitting at the table was very lovely and I am going to make it a priority to do a little more frequently.
Tonight, we are grilling marinated round steak and seasoned carrots. I think we'll grill the apples again for dessert!

Even my neighbor's mexican tuba music can't bring me down...

This summer marks four years of living in Chicago. There have been many ups and downs, just as anyone experiences, but the past two years have been especially tough. Not that it was all terrible or horrible or awful, just difficult. I have never felt so challenged personally, and then to be so early in our marriage added another level. We have both learned a lot, so I am happy to say that I think things are starting to look up. I feel a lot more freedom and security and hope for the future. Part of this is because last week I was hired for my first teaching position! I am so happy to officially begin my teaching career! Summer school will be over in another week and a half and I will have a good portion left of the summer to relax , visit with family and friends, and prepare to teach 6th/5th grade! Tom is busy working for a free breakfast/lunch program in the city and is doing really awesome things with that. The program lasts through mid-August, so we are just praying that he is next to land a teaching position for this coming school year.

This would mean the world to us and would finally give us both the stability we have been longing for. We know that we just have to continue to work hard, trust God, and be patient that it will come. We believe our hearts are in it for the right reasons, so we have no reason to worry.

SO...YAY! I feel READY for whatever God has planned!!!