October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween, or whatever

Garden Eats

Guess what?  We grew this in our garden:
Napa Cabbage

I still can't believe the amazing things that novice gardeners can grow with a little TLC. 
And guess what else?  We grew these green beans below!  I didn't even know how green beans grew until my husband planted them.  You learn something new everyday!
All vegetables in this dinner, courtesy of our backyard!
This is an upclose of the prepared cabbage.  I went rogue on this one and it turned out AMAZING.  I just cooked 4 pieces of prosciutto in a little olive oil until they were crisp.  Then I added a leek and sauteed that for a few minutes.  Finally I added the thinly sliced cabbage and a beer and let that simmer for about 10-15 minutes. 

The colors might look dark and burnt, but the taste and the subsequent Ooh's and Aah's I got from Grant were enthusiastic and fantastic!  
(Note to self: Work on pictures to make your food look less like dog food)

This is another meal that I made using the homegrown green beans and the rest of the prosciutto.  Chicken Marsala by Tyler Florence.  Something about sliced and quartered mushrooms are so meaty and delicious.  I love a good 'shroom!  Especially when I find them in a decadent, salty, crispy, Marsala wine sauce.
Prosciutto makes everything yummy!

I guess there really is no point to this post.  I just thought I'd share the beauty that is gardening.  And cooking.  And eating.  Food.

October 30, 2012

Creative Cousin

Boo!  Did I scare you?  I just wanted to get your attention to share these super creative Halloween treats.
Look at these amazing Halloween dinner ideas that my cousin made when I was in DC last weekend:
Jack O' Lantern Peppers stuffed with turkey, cheese, onions, seasonings, etc.
Green Beans Casserole with Ritz Cracker Tombstones.  Scary delicious!
It's not too late to make them for tomorrow night's dinner.  Spook and delicious - the perfect All Hallows Eve combination! 

Missing Cookie

Recently my sister brought up a very good point after repinning a recipe for "Skinny Oreo Cookies and Cream Milkshake".
You can find the recipe here.  In that recipe you will notice that it calls for 2 1/2 Reduced Fat Oreo Cookies...Houston, we have a problem.  What is going to happen with the other 22 cookies in that pack?
People who look for "skinny" milkshake recipes aren't exactly the same people that can refrain from devouring the entire remainder of the cookie source.
That's the problem with Pinterest.  It's so inspiring but so unrealistic.  That's why I recently changed my Pinterest "about me" description to read:
Pinterest is a virtual interpretation of Skee-Lo's "I Wish". But in this case I wish I was a little bit richer, I wish I was craftier, I wish I had a stylist, if I did I would call her.


October 28, 2012

Ice Cream Sundays - Peanut Butter World

I never thought I'd say this about anything, ever.  But this flavor was too chocolately and too peanut buttery.  The label says it has Peanut Buttery Swirls.  It's really more like huge chunks of peanut butter.  It sounds like it'd be a good thing, but it was actually too much, even for a peanut butter fanatic like me.  With the milk chocolate ice cream and additional chocolate cookie swirls, it was decadence overload.   Not surprisingly, it is also one of the most fattening flavors I've tasted to date.
The good news is that the richness of this flavor prevented me from taking more than a couple of bites per sitting.  The funny news is that I had about 5 bites total over a few days, then went back last night to have some more, only to discover that it had been stolen.   After a little research, however, I was able to uncover the fact that my husband had in fact devoured the whole pint essentially.  I was kind of happy about that.
Clearly, unlike Secret deodorant, this was strong enough for a man, but not made for a woman.
This flavor, in all its decadence, is part of an Exclusive Flavor series that Ben and Jerry's teamed up with Target to sell in order to promote volunteerism.  It sure is nice to feel that your ice cream eating is doing some good in the world.
Yay!  I helped!
Flavors Tried - 31
Favorite Flavor - Mint Chocolate Cookie

October 27, 2012

Ice Cream Danger

A funny thing happened on the way to the forum A dangerous thing happened at Target last weekend.
I hit the mother load of new flavors and couldn't control myself.  I bought them all!
Stay tuned for tomorrow's new flavor!

October 25, 2012


RAOK - A Random Act of Kindness.  It doesn't roll off the tongue quite like SNAFU or ASAP, but it comes from a good place.
I have recently experienced two RAOK's that have left me feeling reassured about humanity.
Last week a hem came out of my dress so I went to my regular tailor to get it stitched back up.  Mama don't sew.  I was prepared to get a ticket, wait a week, and come back to pay for the repair upon collecting my dress.  Well Son of Bee sting if he didn't fix it on the spot.  For free!  He wouldn't even let me pay him when I asked.
Flash forward to yesterday, I went in to a jewelry store in which I have never stepped foot to get a loose stone tightened in a ring I have.  Same story - Fixed it on the spot, wouldn't even let me pay him.
It's raining kindness, people! 
I guess if you have a smile on your face, go to nice people, and ask nicely (as long as your shit isn't messed up too bad), then people really are there to help you!
Now I have a dress that is hemmed, a ring that is fixed, and a heart that is warm.  All for $Free.00.  You can't put a price on kindness!

October 24, 2012

Easy Breezy Slow Cook

Did you know this was a thing?
Some like it hot.  And slow!
A whole section of slow cooker spices, recipes included, in the spice aisle!  How convenient.  Thanks McCormick!
Crock pots are so hot right now.  Between Pinterest, working women, and guys attempting to cook, slow cooking is all the rage.  I can't wait to go back to this aisle next week and pick up a packet for Italian Herb Chicken.  Check out all the possible flavors here.

October 23, 2012

Hip Hip Hooray!

Tonight marks a great night!  For it will be the first one in over a month that I don't have to worry about watching baseball or a political debate.
Sadly, the Cardinals lost the playoffs last night.  While Grant is semi-devastated because his beloved Cards lost, I am semi-elated that the yearly struggle of tolerating baseball viewing in my house is over!  Those games last FOR.EVER.  And the fact that this fell on the same night that the last political debate occurred is just the big ol' cherry on top. 
Back to the Nightly News and the Real Housewives of Everywhere! 
And back to Grant going to bed 4 hours earlier than me.  Which is just to say that he goes to bed super early and I cannot, ever, make myself go to bed at a reasonable time.  One day I'll learn!

Biscoff Spread is Good

I super hate it when people start sentences like this...But can we talk about this Biscoff Cookie Butter?  I die.
It is unreal.  It tastes, well, just like a Biscoff cookie.  And in case you can't remember it back from the days when airlines used to actually give their passengers in-flight snacks, let me remind you.  The taste is a mixture of sugar, butter, crunch, and carbs.  Only this time it's creamy and you can put it on stuff! 
I bought this at World Market, the place where spare change goes to die.  Seriously, how can you walk in there and not buy a chotchkie or two? 
You have to try this stuff!

October 21, 2012

Ice Cream Sundays - Cannoli

This week's flavor is another Limited Batch - Cannoli
This flavor was really good.  The Mascarpone Ice Cream had a distinct tangy flavor that puts in a class apart from Vanilla.  They looks the same, but they don't taste the same!  I still prefer vanilla, by the by, but that's just because I'm old school.
The Fudge Covered Cannoli Pastry bites were had a nice sugary crunch throughout the ice cream as well.
I really don't have that many adjectives to describe this flavor.  It was just plain old good, creamy fun.  It's always nice to try something different!
By the way, with all of these Limited Batches throwing off my overall goal of 47 flavors, it is not lost on me that I could conceivably be eating Ben and Jerry's for the rest of my life.  All in the name of research!
Flavors Tried: 30
Favorite Flavor: Mint Chocolate Cookie

October 19, 2012

How I feel on Friday, 5pm

Diva in the Sky With Sleep Spray

Wow.  I thought Mariah was bad with her French mineral waterMeet the biggest diva in all the sky - Abercrombie & Fitch's CEO.
Article here.
I'm surprised at two things here.
1) That anyone could ever getting away with these asinine requirements.
2) That enough people still shop at Abercrombie & Fitch to afford it's CEO with the luxury of a private jet and an in-flight staff of 4 specifically dressed males.
Mike Jeffries' list of demands sounds like a raucous combination of sexual harrasment, abuse of company funds, and a nightmare personality.
Usually I'm all for being a diva and not being timid when it comes to getting nice things.  But I draw the line at dictating when people are allowed to wear coats and the blatant abuse of frangrances.  You've officially gone too far...even for me.

Diveats - Potato & Broccoli Puree

If you're like me, you sometimes struggle with ideas for interesting side dishes for dinner.  First world problems, I know.
Prepare to add a new side dish into your bag of tricks - Broccoli Puree (click the link for recipe)
I was just going to serve this alongside my chicken with dinner.  However, it ended up making so much and had a consistency that so resembled mashed potatoes, that I just decided right then and there to make it a little bed for my chicken to lay it's dead breast.
Chicken breast w/ Toast points, served on a comfy bed of Broccoli Puree
My husband declared that it looked so good, "It deserved a glass of wine with it."  I'm pretty sure he just wanted an excuse for a glass of wine, but I'll take it!
The only modifications I made were to add garlic powder for a little more flavor.  I also can pretty much guarantee that a little dollop of butter in the mix would taste divine, but I didn't try that this time.  Maybe next time, when I prepare to hibernate for winter.

October 18, 2012

Stupid Lyrics to Songs I Love

I haven't done one of these in ages!  Today's lyrical breakdown is "Drunk on You" by Luke Bryan.  Here's a little excerpt:

Well if you ain't a ten, you're a 9.9 - Ok just stop right there.  Why would you take back the 10?  Girls don't typically like being demoted in looks, especially mid-sentence.

Tippin' and spillin' that homemade wine on your tied-up, tshirt - Ew, homemade wine.  You know that shit's muscadine.  Pass.

Every little kiss is drivin me wild, throwin little cherry bombs into my fire - Not safe.

Good God al-mighty

Girl you make my speakers go "BOOM BOOM" - You probably need to  get your system checked.  Sounds like something might be wrong with the bass.

Dancin' on the tailgate in a full moon - Careful!  That's sounds really unstable, especially in the dark!

That kinda thing makes a man go mhmm mhmm - Not very manly.  Not very real words.

You're lookin' so good in what's left of those blue jeans - She sounds like a very poor dresser.  Either that or someone attacked her and slashed jeans into pieces, in which case, my condolences.

Drip of honey on the money maker gotta bee - Not sure what this means but it sounds like he wants to put honey on her butt.  Good luck cleaning that off.  Honey sticky, yo.

The best buzz I'm ever gonna find.. - Highly doubt that.  Have you ever tried a little thing called alcohol?  Might I suggest a nice Cabernet Sauvignon?

I'm a little drunk on you, and high on summertime

The lyrics may be stupid but that doesn't mean I don't love the song!

October 17, 2012

Negative Ghost Rider

I received this in the mail yesterday and was literally taken aback by it.
I mean, Wow.  Negative much?  Dramatic much?  A much too much?
I'm against all negative campaigning in general.  If you can't stand strong on the basis of your own merits, than you aren't a strong candidate.  Don't resort to attacking your opponent to get votes. 
Good goal: Being the best you that you can be!
Bad goal: Being the best at violently attacking someone else's character.
While you may succeed in casting great doubt about the character of someone else, by being so aggressively negative you have erased all doubt about yours.   
The only thing this sender is getting my vote for is Most Dramatic!  I'm surprised the message wasn't written in actual blood.  Aren't politics grand :P

October 16, 2012

Diveats - Mushroom "Pizza"

Have you ever made a mushroom pizza?  OK, maybe that's not really a real thing, but it should be!
With just a few simple ingredients you can make a personal size pizza for one.  Only it's not really pizza.  It's even simpler and totally healthy.
So simple.  So easy to make.
I made myself a mushroom pizza recently by marinading a portabella mushroom cap in Italian dressing for about a half hour.  Then I baked it at 350 for about 12 minutes.  Next I added tomato slices on top and baked for another 5 minutes. 
Finally, I layered on a few slices of fresh mozzarella and baked for another 5 minutes or until the cheese was slightly melted.  I also broiled it on high for a minute or two after that to try to achieve a golden brown color on top.  I succeeded for the most part.
Melty Cheesy Yummy
I have made this one other time and added pesto.  Might I say that pesto makes a world of difference.  It really takes it from pizza-reminiscent to this-is-so-good-I-am-in-no-way-wishing-this-"pizza"-had-an-actual-buttery-crust.  So I'd obviously recommend adding pesto!  I was just out this time.
Nothing revolutionary here, but it sure is an easy mid-week dinner that you can whip up in a figure-friendly flash!  Try it!

Work Out for Me

Have you ever tried the Pure Barre/Barre Fit/VBarre/etc. style classes?  They are NO joke!
For some reason I thought this type of class was going to be some first and second position, maybe a few lunges, some twisting toward the bar, and a light little excercise. 
I went to my first class last week and I was dripping with sweat by the end.  Which was unfortunate only because I assumed it would just be some light stretching with no sweat involved, so I had to go back to work immediately afterward lookin' a hot mess.  This was made even more hilarious/gross by the fact that I did it with two of my coworkers during our lunch break.  So we all 3 had to go back to work like some sweaty trio of unshowered, shaky employees.  Oh did I forget to mention how much you shake during the class.  I could barely walk up the steps back to work an hour later.
But I mean all of this in a good way.  It was an incredible toning workout and I want to go back again and again.  There are several places in Wilmington that offer the class.  But the only one I've tried and the one that has the best prices in town according to my research is Open Studio on Military Cutoff.
I went back for a Yoga Fusion class today and it was equally as awesome!  I just love it when you are expecting to get a good workout and instead you end up getting a GREAT workout.  I am so happy I did it during my lunch break and it made be feel amazing for the rest of the day.
While I'm not one to typically shell out a bunch of money for speciality exercise classes, these Barre style classes are totally worth it in my opinion.  LivingSocial.com currently has an offer for 5 VBarre classes at Lithe Core Pilates Studio for $47, so I bought that too!  I'm ultimately going to end up buying a package at Open Studio because I absolutely love that place, but as long as the LivingSocial deals keep popping up, I'm going to keep grabbing them.
Go try it today.  Your body, your butt, and your boyfriend will thank you :)

October 15, 2012

Softest Blanket Ever

I recently received the Best. Gift.  Ever.  It was the best because it was for no occasion and because it is just the best! 
My dad gave me this blanket this weekend - The Softest Blanket Ever.
First of all, it really is the softest blanket ever.  I consider myself kind of an authority on blankets, couch situations, and overall coziness, so this is a bold statement.
Second of all, it makes me feel like Simba from the Lion King.  What it lacks in "elegance" in the looks department, it more than makes up for in plushness and resemblance to everyone's favorite Disney Lion.
It is a little pricey online, but I think my dad got it at an Orvis Outlet shop for half the usual price.  I think...Either that or I just made that up and it really is $59.  I have no idea.  But regardless, it's worth every penny.
It comes in Twin, Queen, etc., but I wouldn't even waste this on a bed where it would just be sitting between the flat sheet and a bedspread.  This blanket deserves direct skin contact.  Drape it on yourself on the couch and prepare to be in lazy person's heaven!
Thanks dad for the best October 13th present ever!  I'm in love with a blanket!!

October 11, 2012

Crazy Mama June

I stole this from my friend, but if you are a fan of Honey Boo Boo and/or her fabulous mother, June, than you will love this as much as I did.
I die.

Non-Orthopeadic Like Woah

I want to bitch slap this idea.  Front-heeled Shoes
The article says these shoes are "scary beautiful".
The writer of this here article says these are scary stupid.  The style of these shoes and the angle of the dangle of the person wearing them reminds me so much of livestock I can't even stand it, or explain it.
While I'm sure Lady Gaga will be all over these babies, I for one will not be joining the trend.  I will also desperately have to resist the urge to trip any person I might see wearing these insane shoes, because you know shit ain't stable.
I implore you to watch the video on the bottom of this article.  Homegirl looks like she has a cattle prod up her ass. 
No thanks!  I think I'll stick with my flip flops and tennis!

October 08, 2012

Stick Seeking Stick

Recent spotting on the highway:

Seeking a loving stick figure to care for my 2 boys, 1 alien baby, and puppy
This broken home of stick figures reminds me of my all-time favorite Words With Friends opponent.  We have been playing each other for about a year, and until last month, her WWF handle was ProudMomma'n'LovinWifey.  Then suddenly, mid-game, she became ProudMomma'n'LovinSon
Me thinks my scrabble buddy has a broken heart.  But not a broken pointer finger!  That's good news for my games at least.

October 07, 2012

What the What: Part Deux

Right after I posted my previous post about the random fat baby facebook ad, I got this ad (also for 1 Year counseling degree):
That's a foot tat that sas "Faith"
So now I know two things to be true. 1) Facebook clearly just randomly generates a photo for some ads, that have absolutely nothing to do with what they are advertising. And 2) I check Facebook too much.

What the What?

I just got this ad on my facebook homepage.  
What does becoming a counselor in 1 year have to do with obese babies?  Oh that's right...nothing.
But you did get my attention you evil geniuses.  I'll give you that!

October 05, 2012

Everybody's Working for the Weekend

I don't have anything special to say today, but I'm sick of looking at hummus everytime I go to my blog. 
So here's a new post to say Happy Friday. 
And to tell you to watch this:
Maybe your weekend be merry and bright!

October 04, 2012

Hummus Recommendation

I just discovered a new Hummus that I can't get enough of! 

Yummy Hummy!

This hummus tastes just like the homemade dressing from my favorite restaurant - Pita Delite.  It has a delectable mixture of herbs in it that really set it apart from the usual hummus. 
I've been eating it with carrots to be a good girl, but I bet it would be to die for with pita chips! 

October 03, 2012

Diveats - Party Pork Tenderloin

I just realized I've never shared my all time favorite recipe on Diva Says What.  What a travesty!  It's the best thing ever.
It's called Party Pork, but sometimes I just make it for a party of two on any given week night.  It's always a good time to celebrate!
It takes 24 hours of forethought, because you need to marinade it for 24 hours to truly let it shine.  But other than that it's really easy.  And delicious doesn't even begin to describe the flavor.  It's all about the sauce baby.
Here's the recipe:

Can you tell I've used it a few times?

I always, always pair it with this rice.  It's so substantial and beautiful and is really good at sopping up the luscious sauce.
Here's the sauce.  I always take the marinade that I've had the pork in and re-use.  I just bring it to a rolling boil to kill an raw-ness and then simmer it for the entire time that the pork is baking - About 45 minutes at 350, depending on how much meat you use.  I usually just use one tenderloin for two of us.
The sauce is boss, baby!

I was going to take a picture of the whole kit and caboodle but, as usual, I ate it too fast.  I guess that makes me an over aggressive fatass!  But I did remember half way through to take this picture, which does NOT do this meal justice.
Served with wild rice and asparagus.  And bad lighting.

No lie, I'd serve this to the Queen.  It's that sensational.  I just got to have leftovers for lunch and besides the little hiccup of me burning the crap out of my tongue on the rice, it was such a nice midday treat.
When you buy pork tenderloin it seems expensive because a package is about $18 (non-organic).  But two come in a package.  If you use one per meal, that's really only $9 for two people for meat.  That's no more expensive than 2 organic chicken breasts!  Furthermore, most of the other ingredients are standard pantry items that you can throw together in a flash, just add lemon juice!
Here's the legible recipe for Party Pork Tenderloin:
*Note - I always just make half of the marinade because it makes SO much sauce.  1/2 of the recipe below makes enough marinade for 1 or 2 tenderloins, in my opinion.
1.5 - 2 pounds pork tenderloin
- 1.5 cups of salad oil (I use olive oil, don't know what exactly salad oil is)
- 3/4 cup of soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons dry mustard
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 cup white wine vinegar
- 1.5 teaspoons minced fresh parsley (I omit b/c I don't like parsley and hate buying big bushels of herbs only to use a fraction of it)
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
1. Combine all ingredients for marinade and pour over meat.  Cover and refrigerate 24 hours.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees or prepare outdoor grill.
3. Drain marinade from pork and reserve.
4. Place tenderloin on rack in broiler pan or on grill.  (I just use a baking dish)
5. Cook, basting frequently for 30-45 minutes or until desired degree or doneness.

October 02, 2012

Honey Boo Boo go bye bye

Last week was a sad time.  The season finale of TLC's "Here Comes Honey Boo Boo" drew to an end.  And I lost a little piece of my heart.
I sure have grown to love that little spit fire Alana.
As I was watching the show I tried to take this picture to send to my friend:
This is Honey Boo Boo Child getting excited for the arrival of her niece.  That's a 7 year old Aunt, folks. 
But I didn't hit the button in time the first time so I captured this instead, as the scene was slowly changing on the show:

Honey Boo Boo Child - My Muse, My Life

 Pretty artsy right?  Kind of terrifying too, no?
This makes me want to be Honey Boo Boo for Halloween so bad.  But someone in my neighborhood already called it.  I'll just do like Honey Boo Boo do and drown my sorrows in cheese doodles.
*On a related note, Alana's niece that she was so excited about meeting has 3 thumbs.  Ever the optimist, Honey Boo Boo said she was jealous because more thumbs meant more fingers to grab cheese puffs with.  The jar of cheese is always half full for that girl!