July 27, 2017

Grandma's Chicken Noodle Soup {Recipe}

Okay guys, I don't want to brag but, my chicken noodle soup is the best I have ever had. I mean, it's like your grandma's chicken noodle soup. The one you want to eat on a cold snowy day or on a rainy Sunday afternoon. Even though it's summer, I still make it a lot. We love soups here! Plus, everyone who has tried my soup raved about how great it is and Sorry I don't do step by step photos but if you follow this you will get it! But don't forget my very important secret ingredient - dill! If you want to make sure it's absolutely amazing use homemade chicken stock. Nothing  in the world will substitute the flavor and richness of homemade broth.


1 chicken quarter leg
1 carrot
1 celery stick
1 small onion

2 carrots
2 celery sticks
1 large onion
chicken leg cut
1 green onion
small dill bunch
small cialntro bunch
1/4 tsp garlic powder
2 tbsp olive oil
8 oz small dutch egg noddles

How To Make Broth
Put all the ingredients into a large 5 qt pot and cover it with water. Bring it to rapid boil and decrease to simmer. Keep it on lowest heat and simmer for at least one hour. I usually let it simmer for 2 hours and then let it rest another hour off the heat.

Dice carrots, onion and celery. Place 2 tbsp of olive oil into a cast iron Dutch oven and let it heat up over medium heat. Place all the diced vegetables and saute them on low-medium heat for 10-15 minutes, until tender. Add broth, chicken and noodles and stir. Bring to boil and reduce heat to medium and cook until noodles are tender (according to package instructions). Remove from the heat or the noodles will become soggy. Finely chop dill, cilantro and green onion and add to the soup. Add a little bit of the greenery now and then save some for garnish when you serve the soup. The greens are what makes this soup stand out. The combination of fatty and delicious chicken stock with fresh herbs makes this recipe a winner in a my book. Try it!

July 25, 2017

Six Flags Parks (New England vs. Great Escape) Review

Let me start by saying that this is not a sponsored post and I'm just writing it because I didn't find this information anywhere else. Maybe one of you will find it helpful since I've had ton of people ask me where we went and how did it go.


- the park is divided into two sections - roller coasters/rides and water park. All the water activities are in one place with its own cafe and locker rooms
- there are plenty of bathrooms all over the park 
- great section for little ones under 8yrs old. They have a section that has smaller versions of big rides just for young kids in the middles of the park. It has cute little houses they can play in and run around together exploring
- the kids section offers a train ride that goes quite the ways around with scenic road along a pond with beautiful water lilies
- the afro mentioned pond offers rides on swan boats, and a beaver who lives in the bushes, ducks that feed on left over crumbs and plenty of frogs to keep little ones' eyes glued to the water.
- good selection of roller coasters of 'not so crazy rides'
- fairly good sized park with little bit of everything for people of every age especially for families with little children
- lots to do for those who don't like roller coasters
- adorable diner and ice cream place right across the road from parking lot
- everything is accessible by stroller and there are no stairs to climb
- there are a lot of food options in the area within a few minutes drive
- very clean park with garbage cans everywhere
- good security system and up to date scans

- the cafe in the water park area offers beer which I don't think is a very smart choice given that you are next to water and surface is very slippery. It's very easy to trip and fall especially if you are tipsy
- the water in park is very cold. It's straight from tap and isn't heated anywhere
- the height restrictions don't allow kids under the limit to go with an adult on some rides, so there is a minimum and maximum height
- food offerings are limited and as usual way too expensive
- we bought our season passes to be used at all Six Flags parks but only my husband and I redeemed our cards while we were in Six Flags New England. Our kids still didn't have cards when we were entering Six Flags Great Escape. As we approached the scanner it told us that we are at a wrong park. Basically you have to get your cards at the park that you are intending to visit the first time. Since we did have a proof of purchase with us, they let us in 'just this time'. Next time we have to drive to MA to get our Six Flags Season Membership cards. This is ridiculous. Since you buy the membership for all parks you should be able to get the card wherever. I think.
- they do not enforce the dress code and a lot of people were walking in bathing suits all over the park

We loved it. It had enough to do for our little kids and they were excited to go on all the small rides. The park was clean and had a very nice feel to it. We will definitely make this our park and come back again which makes buying season passes worth it.

- large park with a lot to do for all ages
- mostly designed for older children (8yrs old and up) and adults who love roller coasters
- lots of different roller coasters with many themes and speeds
- largest  and tallest Spider Man roller coaster ride in New England (221 ft drop at 77mph)
- tallest swing ride in the world which offers awesome views (I assume ha!)
- great for those seeking thrills and huge rides with older kids or alone

- not designed for small children in mind. It does have a section with few rides for little ones but there are huge towering coasters ride above with people screaming and ruining the whole experience
- food options are very poor, no good healthy choices
- the parking lot is way too far from the park itself. it took us good 15 minutes to walk from our car to the entrance
- the cards are attached to your finger print in their electronic system (at both parks) and no one except you can use the card.
- you have to rent a locker for most maximum thrill rides because they do not hold on to your valuables while you ride. 
- maybe it was just me but music was glaring everywhere 

Not a good place for families with little children but awesome place for kids who love coasters. Best thrill rides in New England for the value. I think if you like thrill rides the season passes is totally worth it, they have a large selection of rides for all thrill seekers. I did not enjoy myself at all because I got sick after the very first ride. After that, no amount of pep talk could get me to ride anymore roller coasters. 

Hope you find it helpful and enjoy whichever park you choose. Take the time and be with your families, do something everyone enjoys! 

July 20, 2017

Summer Happenings {Zoo Trip}

This summer has been so much fun! We are taking advantage of every sunny day and counting our blessings. Considering that the summer has been rainy around these parts, we are glad to see sunshine and embrace the heat every time. Of course, no summer will go by without a few trips to the zoo. We love our local zoo because it has a cool playground and has updated with few new animals. Kids love playing in the playground and getting popsicles on the way. I realize that we won't have this freedom once school starts so we have a summer planned to the gills. Our little explorers love it too. 
Tanks for stopping by!

July 14, 2017

Summer Happenings {Berry Picking}

I love summer! Around our parts, it is very short, hot and humid. But those days we savor every minute and try not to complain about the heat. We go berry picking every year. Starting with strawberries, then raspberries and blueberries. They are in abundance in upstate New York, which we absolutely love. This year strawberries weren't very good considering all the rain but we are looking forward to canning some raspberry jam and eating tons of blueberries. 
We went later in the morning which turned into a muggy and hot afternoon. It wasn't all that popular with kids who wanted to get outta there asap. But nevertheless, they had fun. It's so sweet watching them discover things. Abbie was so excited finding all the ripe blueberries and caught on very quick that only blue ones are yummy. She wasn't a fan of raspberry picking because leaves a bit prickly. Jonathan was a great sport, while I was carrying Abbie around, he picked quite a few berries on his own. I was so very proud of him! 
Although I am very goal oriented person, I try to relax and enjoy kids and see it for what it's worth. Of course, we didn't pick many berries but we enjoyed our time together and the kids learned too a few things too. Hope you get to enjoy some fresh picked berries this summer too!

July 12, 2017

What It Takes To Keep Marriage Going Strong {Love and Marriage}

Back in the year 2006 CE brand new 18 yr old was beyond happy to get her own phone. She bragged about it at her youth group. She was giving it to one of her girlfriends when a boy sitting right next to them memorized it on the spot. That night he texted her and kept her guessing for a while who he is. She had no clue that this handsome, older guy liked her. They talked for a while on the phone and texted ridiculously sweet and mushy messages. Then they went out on a date. He says it wasn't a date but he did pay so, it's official - it was a date. She liked him. He liked her. And it began. Love story of a lifetime.
Our story.
We dated for 9 months before he proposed and another 5 months of engagement. Then on a gorgeous summer afternoon nine years ago we got married. It was the best decision we ever made.
Fast forward a bachelor degree, blog, house and two kids later we are nine years and running.
Newlyweds have asked us, what keeps it going? What does it take to have a solid marriage? One word. Commitment.
I mean it. It's not the lovely fuzzy feeling, it's not the physical attraction, it's not the financial stability, it's not even religion. It's you.
How much do you want it?
In the last nine years we've had some awesome highs and very low lows. The lows, of course, no one talks about. But don't fool yourself. Behind every pretty Instagram photo and family Christmas card is a story of forgiving, loving and committing.
The commitment to our family, to my husband, to our kids and to our life no matter what. No matter if I'm feeling 'in love' or simply living next to each other. The commitment to never give up on each other.. The commitment to lead and to follow. The commitment to put in the work when it requires and to let go when you must. The commitment to grow together and to love each other. The commitment to honor the vows and never look another way with desire for someone else. The commitment to love the Lord our God and obey Him. The commitment to bring out the best in each other and support each other. The commitment when you don't feel like doing it, but you do it anyways. 
The commitment to us. 
Of course, it sounds simple but that's exactly what it is.
Anything we want in life takes work, perseverance and commitment. It's no different with marriage. In fact the success of a marriage depends on our ability to do the mundane tasks over and over again without ever thinking to give up.
Marriage takes choosing to love that person no matter what. It's a choice. Every single day.
Some day I must choose to look beyond the ugly and choose that person again. And again. And again.
It's not easy. I will probably want to give up. You will want to give up too. Someone else's marriage will look like it's doing amazing,  and my isn't. But it's not about them. It's not even about my spouse. It's about me.
What will I do?
What I do regardless of what he does. My response to who he is my own and cannot be excused by who he is. Only because someone is mean, I do not have the permission or the right to do the same.
We teach our children to be nice and kind to strangers, not to answer back with impolite word but somehow we forget to apply it to our own marriage. 
So, if I'm responsible only for myself and not how the other person acts, I must train and learn to behave myself. I must learn to walk with the Lord and love Him with all my heart before I attempt to change or point out faults in another person. I must learn to be the person God wants me to be and walk that walk every single day. 
I choose you darling, every day. I choose our life and our love. I choose to commit and never let go.
Happy anniversary dear.
I love you.