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ODE TO GREEK GOODNESS … Whole Wheat Pasta w/ Shrimp and Lemon Ginger

photo 1-2This summer I ripped through a number of books, including my friend Yvette’s When the Cypress Whispers, set in Greece and NYC. A fantastic, love story that incorporates Greek myth and mouth watering Greek food. Seriously, I wanted to be on a plane headed for Mykonos. So, in the spirit of the cypress whispers, here is an easy, let’s-extend-summer recipe.

x, Carolina

ps. Of course, in Florida it’s always summer, except these torrential rains that have not stopped for the past three weeks.

RECIPE SERVES 6

Extra virgin olive oil

Large peeled shrimp, fresh or thawed (we do 4 per person)

5 garlic cloves, minced

1 box whole wheat pasta (spaghettini or whatever you like)

salt and pepper, to taste

1/4 cup white wine

juice of one lemon

zest of one lemon

1 teaspoon of grated ginger

2-3 tablespoons of butter

1/2 cup roughly chopped flat parsley

1 cup feta cheese, roughly crumbled

 

Set a large pot of salted water to boil, for the pasta.

In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium. When hot, gently lay down the shrimp. Lightly salt (and pepper) them. Cook on one side for about 2 minutes or until they turn pink and easily peel off the skillet. Turn them over and cook for another minute. Remove shrimp onto a large plate and cover with a towel. Add a bit more oil and throw in the garlic. Sauté quickly. When the garlic starts to turn golden, add wine, lemon juice, lemon and ginger zest and bring to a simmer. Season to taste (i.e., add more salt/ pepper). Throw shrimp back in and cover to make sure they are cooked through, about another minute. Turn off the fire and add the butter, letting it melt. Place in a serving bowl and toss with the parsley and feta cheese.

*I also like to add some chili pepper flakes, but I add that to everything!

 

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ANTS IN THEIR PANTS:

Bird_Circle_redYes, it’s true. Kids really do have them. Between the cram-for-state-achievement-exams to don’t-do-anything-where-you-may-fall-and-sue-us, kids are being constrained like veal, forced to sit in their hard plastic chairs for far too long. One occupational therapist believes that more physical time may improve concentration, help kids ‘fidget’ less, and add to their overall wellbeing. She even goes so far as to think it can reduce the number of kids with ADHD. To read the piece from the WashPost (and blog), click on the link below.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/wp/2014/07/08/why-so-many-kids-cant-sit-still-in-school-today/

On a complimentary note, could learning self-control early reduce the number of kids with ADHD? According to one study, the number of French kids with the issue is drastically lower than in the US. Perhaps there is something–other than cooking with butter–to learn from our petite French peers?

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/suffer-the-children/201203/why-french-kids-dont-have-adhd

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What Four-Letter Word Rhymes With NICE?

Sabrina LiceYesterday I woke up to say the four letter word no mother should ever utter: LICE. A few weeks back, news broke out that a girl in Chick 5’s class had this nasty infestation, but parents were assured all of our children were checked and bug-free.

 

I still obsessed over reading everything about lice on the internet and religiously checked her hair for days. All I came to find were sparkle remnants from her Rapunzel and Elsa dressup games. But as Chick 5 subtly scratched at her head yesterday, I did a double-take.

 

Scurrying along the locks of my first born were gross, gossamer garbed six-legged creatures. Trying hard to contain my disgust—I went running to my Dad (we had spent the night). In complete Buia-dad fashion, he went running to the pharmacy and bought out every lice product available.

 

After slathering the Nix treatment on her, my husband and I spent nearly two hours picking out the nits and lice with a rainbow collection of combs. When my sister called for her typical morning check-in,  I told her I was in the infestation trenches. Calmly, she explained there are professionals who do this for a living. What?! 

 

The lice expert came  in less than an hour. “You have lice too,” she said. Ok, now I was totally bugged (and bummed) out. While I thought I couldn’t be more disgusted, my daughter was beaming that mommy also had “escarchas de hormigas” (little sparkly ants).

$290 later (yes, it was worth it), my daughter and I had our hair treated/thoroughly picked at for a couple of hours, and the proud owners of a FIFTH lice comb–that is apparently the best on the market. Nit Free Terminator (on Amazon for $10.75). At this point, there wasn’t anything she couldn’t sell me.  

What did I learn from this whole ordeal?

-What the eggs of lice really look like (think sesame seeds), I had clearly overlooked them. (For those lucky ones who haven’t gone through this, the eggs of lice are known as “nits,” probably to make it sound less repulsive).

-How to properly comb out lice from my expert (I could have seen that on YouTube. Hindsight is 20/20).

-I paid way too much for the lice removal, but I was paying for peace of mind.

The rest of my Sunday was spent cleaning like a lunatic– boiling hairbrushes and bows, washing towels, sheets, doll dresses, vacuuming, putting non-washable items into plastic bags—the whole nine yards that I had read about for days.

Next time we pay a visit to my parent’s place, I hope to not bring extra guests. xx, Melissa

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School is starting, the move has happened, and the family is back from our Spain trip. Which means, we Buia Sisters are revving up the blog again. First in line? A thought piece that was published last week on fox.com, penned by yours truly. While this is a heated issue, I would love your thoughts, x Carolina
http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/opinion/2014/08/05/opinion-after-brady-passes-one-latina-mom-is-fired-up/

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SPRING CLEANING …. SUMMER BREAK … BUT NOT FOR LONG!!

Hi All,
This has been a whirlwind of a year for us Buia sisters. We both moved from the North East so we could be close to our parents in Miami. We wanted to be near where we grew up and to raise our kids the way we were raised: biculturally and near the beach. It’s also been a year since we hatched this blog, and after playing around with it a bit, we have realized that we want to go more in the “topical thought and tasty, easy meal-direction.” Basically, we want to be a go-to for food and thought. After all, it’s the most organic way. We grew up eating dinner together as a family, we are continuing that tradition. And we found that our talks around the dinner table helped shape us into strong women, stealthy debaters, and good listeners.

It’s all been an adjustment, moving from one home to another, moving in with our parents (first Carolina, then Melissa), renting a home, buying a home (Carolina), buying an apartment (Melissa). So we apologize for the neglect, but we will be back in a couple of months, stronger than ever and with lots of great content to share. During this break, as we pack all our stuff, we may post a blog here and there, but we promise to be more consistent once we both get moved in (and re-do our kitchens). Thanks for checking in … Love, The BUIA SISTERS, Carolina and Melissa