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Our oldest was invited to participate in the 7th Grade Duke University Talent Identification Program, and chose to take the ACT (which just happened to be on the same day as my birthday). Out of the 1,184 students who were requested to test in Arkansas, 544 qualified for the State Recognition Ceremony, which was held in Little Rock (and just happened to be on the same day as Cinco de Mayo). So our family gathered to celebrate the wonderful accomplishments of our son/sibling and the Mexican Army.

Duke Tip kids in Little Rock

– students from Fayetteville who traveled to the State Recognition Ceremony

joe with medal

– Joe holding up his medal on our way out of Little Rock after the ceremony


mexican shrimp cocktail

1 pound cooked shrimp, cut into pieces

2 tomatoes, diced

3 tablespoons pickled jalapeno peppers, diced

1/2 cup lime juice

1/4 cup olive oil

1/4 cup sweet chili sauce

1/4 cup tomato juice

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

2 tablespoons hot sauce

2 tablespoons prepared horseradish

1 avocado, diced

salt and freshly ground black pepper

tortilla chips for serving if desired

Stir together shrimp, tomatoes, jalapeños, lime juice, olive oil, sweet chili sauce, tomato juice, parsley, cilantro, hot sauce, and horseradish. Cover and chill for at least an hour. Stir in avocado, add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with tortilla chips if desired.


Recipe adapted from Southern Living, December 2014