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The Adventures of Nick & Brittany

Sweet visitors

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Amelia’s first trip to High Point

A few weeks ago we got to go to High Point for the first time as a family of three!

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Our sweet Amelia got lots of loving from her grandparents and great-grandparents!

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One month old!

Our sweet girl is already more than a month old! This past month was a whirlwind of emotions and growth for the three of us.  At her one month appointment Amelia was 21 inches and up to 9 lbs. 5 oz! 🙂 She is a great sleeper and is pretty easy to read.  She has been a lot more alert and is making lots of noises (other than crying) and is a pretty content baby! We are thankful for God’s grace and kindness to us through her little life!

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My sweet family on my 25th birthday.  Twenty five was a pretty sweet year, and I am so excited to be entering into my twenty sixth year as a family of three. 🙂

Amelia Caroline

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Sweet family!

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And sweet friends..

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The sweetest husband and father. 🙂

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so tiny!

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First night home!

Just for fun..

Things I am loving in pregnancy:

Sleep (when I can get it) 

Pickles (and it has to be this kind)

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Salty chips, popcorn, salt. 

Fruit and Vegetables.

Iced Mocha from Starbucks (but I loved this before so..) 

And salads of all kinds. With lots of cheese and dressing (so not the healthy kind).  Lately I’ve been on a Caesar kick. 

Exercise (as of week 12ish)- swimming, a little running, and this prenatal work out: 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5VuLZLdKgIo

Excited to find out our baby’s gender in just a few weeks! 🙂 And then I can add shopping for baby to this list. 

2 years and our little family is growing!

This past year has flown by, and God has used both the joys and difficulties to grow us in so many ways! God has been so faithful to us and our marriage and we look forward to another year together filled with His grace!

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We are especially thankful, and so overjoyed that the Lord has chosen to bless us with a child! 🙂 His ways are perfect.

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Baby Smith is due January 6th, 2014!

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Some of my new favorite recipes

1.) This homemade brownie recipe from Smitten Kitchen: http://smittenkitchen.com/blog/2012/08/my-favorite-brownies/

I discovered this recipe when I made her Salted Caramel Brownies for Valentine’s day (pictured),

Imagewhich were also really delicious, but a lot of work because of the making, freezing, cutting and combining of the caramel.  Before I added the caramel component I tasted the batter and knew I would be making at least the basic brownie again.  When I did (I have since made them 3 times)- I found that they require minimal effort, less than 15 minutes and 1 bowl to make– and they are so much better than the stuff you buy in the box.

2.) The Pioneer Woman’s Sunday Night Stew with Mashed potatoes.  This stew is so delicious and rich.  You serve it in a bowl next to some really thick mashed potatoes and let the juices run all over.  You should make this stew: http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2013/01/sunday-night-stew/

3.) Homemade Avocado ranch from How Sweet Eats- This stuff is good on everything.  Next time I will make it with an extra half of an avocado though, for a little more avocado flavor: http://www.howsweeteats.com/2013/02/cheesy-double-bean-quesadillas-with-homemade-avocado-ranch/

4.) Chicken Pot Pie Soup with Cheesy Biscuits-  This soup is really filling, loaded with Imagevegetables and tastes like chicken pot pie. Also, it’s probably more healthy than actual chicken pot pie if you exercise some biscuit-portion-control.  I put carrots, celery, onions, potatoes, mushrooms, corn and peas in ours and omitted the leeks.  In the recipe she uses store-bought puff pastry but I decided to make our favorite cheese biscuits instead.  To make the biscuits combine 1 1/2 cups Bisquick, 3/4 cup chicken stock, 4 oz. cheese (we like Monterrey Jack or Pepper Jack) 1/4 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Use two greased soupspoons to place 12 heaping mounds onto a greased baking sheet.  Bake at 450 degrees for 15-20 minutes until golden: http://www.howsweeteats.com/2012/12/chicken-pot-pie-soup/

Chicken Piccata

Chicken Piccata: the American adaptation of an Italian style of cooking which basically consists of coating a type of meat, pan frying and then making a sauce from the pan drippings.  This is my version of the classic.

You start by seasoning the chicken with lemon juice, salt and pepper then lightly coating with flour and pan frying.  Next you make the sauce- a mixture of white wine, lemon, butter, heavy cream and chicken stock– this sauce is my favorite part of this recipe– it’s tangy, sweet, salty, and creamy.  Then to finish,  toss the chicken in the sauce to coat and serve over warm pasta.  Hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

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Chicken Piccata

Ingredients:

3 chicken breast fillets, pounded to ½ inch thickness and cut into equal strips

Juice of 1 lemon

Salt and pepper

1 cup all-purpose flour (for dredging the chicken)

3 tablespoons olive oil + 2 tablespoons unsalted butter + 1 clove garlic minced (per batch for frying)

For the Sauce:

6 Tbs.  butter

2 cloves garlic minced

2 tablespoon flour

1/2 cup dry white wine

1 cup chicken stock

1/3 cup heavy cream (plus more to taste)

Juice of half a lemon (plus more to taste)

1/2 Tbs.  sugar

Salt

Directions:

Season chicken strips with salt, pepper and the juice of 1 lemon.

Dredge the chicken strips in flour, and shake off excess. Set aside.

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Heat olive oil and butter in large skillet over medium heat. Once the butter is melted, add one clove of minced garlic and stir then add the chicken making sure not to crowd the pan as chicken strips will not properly brown (I fry the chicken in 2-3 batches depending on the size of the breasts—make sure to dump the oil and replace it after each batch).  Once chicken is browned and cooked through (3 minutes per side) remove and place on a paper towel lined plate. Image

To make the sauce, pour out the oil from the skillet used to fry the chicken. Add butter and when melted add the minced garlic and sauté for 30 seconds.  Next add the flour and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Then, add in the dry white wine, chicken stock, heavy cream and juice of half a lemon. Bring sauce to a bubble over medium-high heat stirring constantly and then reduce heat to medium-low for 3 minutes to reduce it.  Add in the 1 tsp. sugar and extra salt/sugar/lemon/heavy cream  to taste.  Add the chicken strips back into the pan and coat chicken with sauce.Image

Serve chicken and sauce over angel hair pasta.

   Serves   4-6

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