Wednesday, August 1, 2012


   My sister and I have always been toeing the line between polar opposites and kindred spirits.  She is a fiery, independent, quick-tempered, protective person with ambitions and goals that she fights for with all her might.  I'm a laid-back, go-with-the-flow type who keeps her mouth shut unless it's really important; a person who sets goals, but often exchanges them for something else.  My sister is an Aries; I'm a Cancer.  She's short; I'm tall.  She's a redhead (with all the characteristics that word brings to mind), and I'm a brunette (with most of the mediocrity that word drums up).  But when you scrape away a couple of the outer layers you find that we're not so different after all. We both have open minds with Christian morals.  We share a love of Jane Austen, sushi, and pickled okra that transcends your everyday liking.  We share a language, a form of expressing ourselves through the written word.  Most of all, we share a common past.

   Although we have younger siblings, my sister an I are the only ones that share that "growing up together" experience.  With our younger siblings, being so much younger than us, we were limited in the amount of time we actually spent at home together.  This doesn't mean we love either of them any less, it simply means my older sister and I share our childhood in a way that's just ours.  These days, with J being gone, and Monkey and I living in another state, I've grown to see how much my sister means to me.  Growing up we fought like cats and dogs (as is expected from two girls sharing one bathroom), but now that we're older, married and raising our children, I find myself able to relate to my sister in ways I never did.  We're almost on the same level.  We are at about the same place in life with our families, which makes it easier for us to talk and share and be open with one another.

   I was thinking today of how Monkey is an only child, and I can't help but hope that one day she has a sister of her own.  I can't imagine how lonely I'd be right now without my sister, or my brother, or my younger sister.  I think of Monkey getting older, and I imagine a time when her father and I won't be here any more, and it would be sad to leave this world knowing that she had no one to fully understand who she is or where she came from.  I know how close friends can get to being like sisters, but there's still something about having someone there who was with you, who grew up with you, who watched you fall and get back up, and who saw you become the person you are now that makes them close to you in a way that someone who doesn't know your story could never be.

   What prompted this deep reverie of pondering, you ask?  Pizza.  Simple as it sounds, my sister's blog post about pizza made me travel down this path of nostalgia.  Here's why:  This morning Monkey and I went to the Comissary to load up on our two weeks worth of groceries, and on the way home I was thinking about how excited I was to try a new pizza recipe I found so I could share it with y'all tonight.  When I got home from the store, I checked Facebook, and what do I see?  My sister had made a pizza and blogged about it!  It's just one of those quirky things, like when you buy the same shirt even though you weren't shopping together.  Or when you say the same thing at the same time.  Just that moment of connection.  That's what started it all, so blame the pizza for this bit of rambling you have to scroll through to actually get the recipe.

So here it is:

 Chicken Alfredo Pizza
Here's what you'll need:

3/4 lb chicken breast
Black pepper and salt to taste
2 TBS butter
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1 TBS all purpose flour
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
16 oz pizza dough (I used Pillsbury's)
2 cups baby spinach, rinsed and dried
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
1 cup mozzarella
2 TBS olive oil

Preheat oven to 375.  Place chicken in a Ziploc with half of the garlic, salt and pepper.  Let marinate for 15 minutes.  Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat, add chicken breasts and cook 4-5 minutes per side or until cooked through.

Remove from skillet, and cut into little chunks.  Set aside.  Melt butter in a saucepan over med-high heat.  Add remaining garlic and red pepper flakes, saute for a minute or two.

Add flour, cook slightly, but don't let it brown.  Add cream, and cook, stirring, until sauce is thickened.

 Remove sauce from heat, and stir in Parmesan cheese and salt and pepper to taste.  Line a 13" baking sheet (or pizza stone if you have one) with parchment paper, and then roll dough onto the sheet.  Spread the sauce over the dough.

Top with spinach,

Monkey loves helping me make pizza!

 and chicken.

Add mozzarella.  Cook for 25 minutes or until dough is golden brown.


Oh, and just for fun.  Here's a clip from one of my sister's and my favorite movies:


  1. I knew the "favorite movie" and song clip you were referring to before I even checked the link! Thank you for putting a smile on my face this morning. There truly is something calming about having a sister who knows your past and the things you've gone through and the things you've yet to overcome that still believes you can accomplish anything and motivates you to do so. I LOVE YOU! :)

    psst...your pizza looks delicious!