Summer 2017 is coming to a close, and what a summer it has been! One day after the last day of school we welcomed baby Clara to our family. We had a lot of snuggles, a baptism, a trip to the family farm, and of course the older kid's summer camps and lessons. School and work start up again in a few days, and while it is always sad to bid another summer goodbye, I'm excited for what this new year will bring. As a teacher the new year starts in September, not January!
As one of our last big summer activities, we did a little group camping with a bunch of other Catholic families. Camping with a brand new little one can be challenging, but we knew with all these great friends around us we could handle it. It was an amazing experience. Not only did the kids play outside all day long without ever once seeming to miss t.v. or video games, but we had mass every day in the camp lodge, praise and worship music around the campfire, and overall a great chance for fellowship with other Catholic families doing the best they can to get each other to heaven.
There was quite the large group of us there, so getting everybody fed was a group effort. With everyone pitching in we has plenty to go around! For one of our meals I brought one of my favorite salads my dad used to make a lot when I was little. The official recipe in the family cookbook uses several different kinds of canned beans, but my dad usually stuck to kidney beans, green bell pepper, and onion. For my version I added some fresh green beans, which I think made a great addition. The ingredients are marinated in a simple sweet dressing, which pairs wonderfully with the cool, crisp vegetables. I love the contrast between the soft kidney beans and the crunchy peppers and green beans.
Kidney Bean Salad
(amounts for veggies are approximate - I don't really measure for that part. Add as much or as little of your favorite ingredients as you want!)
2 cans red kidney beans
2 green bell peppers, diced large
1/2 large sweet onion, diced
1 large handful fresh green beans, cut into short pieces
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup vinegar
3/4 cup sugar
Mix together vegetables and add dressing. Serve chilled. I prefer to serve with a slotted spoon to help drain any excess dressing.