Sunday, May 30, 2010

Mayday, Mayday

The end of May is upon us and I've been a busy girl. People have been pestering me to come back to my poor neglected blog.

So far I've lost five pounds, but I've abandoned the 365 effort. I don't like sex THAT much.

It's late and my brain is begging me for a REM cycle, so I'll return tomorrow with a real blog, pictures and all.

Happy Memorial Day everyone - and remember what it's all about. It's not about drinking and visiting family in Chicago. It's about honoring and remembering all those who sacrificed their lives for our freedom.

And yes, that was a deliberate dig at Barack Obama.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


That's right, not February...FAILbruary. EPIC, EPIC, FAILBRUARY.

I failed in oh, so many ways last month, and it's stretching into March now.

First off, I failed to post adequate blogs. Secondly, I went to the gym a total of three times. Technically, two and a half. And because my least favorite aunt returned after two years, twice in the month of Failbruary, my husband and I failed our 365 goal. I think we totaled out six times, tops. And I didn't post any healthy, easy, cheap recipes. (I think I'm going to have to do that on a quarterly basis. Every month is a bit much.)

But there is hope!

That's my garden. Here's what it looked like before. I'll have more pictures soon - since I took these pictures we've added more flowers and some other fun things.

And even though I haven't been going to the gym...

34.5 inches!

Now if only I can get back on the elliptical...or maybe just a good romp under the covers will do the trick!!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Party Gras!

Tonight we celebrated Mardi Gras at our house. We made fun hats, wore beads, and ate jambalaya while listening to New Orleans jazz.

Here's my daughter and myself in our Mardi Gras attire:

And here is how you make jambalaya!


Zatarain's Jambalaya w/Cheese Mix (2 boxes)
Campbell's Cream of Celery Soup (2 cans)
Aidell's Andouille Sausage (2 packages) - if this sausage is too spicy you can use whatever you like
5 cups water


Brown the sausage.

Add water and Zatarain's mix and follow directions. Cook covered for 25 minutes.

Stir in the cream of celery and cook for an additional five minutes; remove from heat. Let sit for five minutes to cool and thicken. Enjoy!

This is a very simple recipe that we have used in my family now ever since I was a little girl. I think we have a new family tradition here!

Monday, February 15, 2010


This plan is falling apart! The house is a wreck, Aunt Flo visited for a week and threw us off the 365 track, and I can't stop eating chocolate.

Let me show you an example:

This was our Valentine's Day dinner. I made everything myself. Seared ribeyes with arugula-roasted red pepper salad, cheesy rosemary breadsticks, strawberries and chocolate zabaglione, chocolate tiramisu, chocolate amaretti cake, and some lovely syrah. It was amazing but I'm pretty sure I gained about seven pounds. I'll post the recipes later today.

Also, for the first time in TWENTY years, it snowed in Charleston! Here's a link to my photo blog so you can see the snow. Here are some bonus pictures.

I suppose they are Greek?...

Sad sad snow bunny.


Now, I'm off to clean the house and tie my husband to the bed before he has to go to work. That's right, I said it!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010


out of time, and ideas, and thoughts in general!

Sorry for my extended absence of worthwhile blogging material. I haven't had a lot of time to take photos because life is just crazy right now! Here is what's been going on, with YES, photos.

My weeklong vegan diet consisted of smoothies, salads, and grilled veggie sandwiches. Near the end I had some Amy's Organic Veggie Burgers. Also, spaghetti with zucchini and squash.

Here is a typical smoothie:

A whole banana, a whole peeled peach, a cup of strawberries and half a cup of orange juice, with one third cup almond milk.
Here is a tasty salad:

Romaine, spinach, plum tomatoes, carrots, blueberries with a homemade raspberry vinaigrette.


Plain almonds with honey and almond milk. YUM!

And while the scale says I lost five pounds, I apparently didn't lose it in my stomach:

I've gained over THREE INCHES in my waist since the beginning of the year. Maybe the scale was wrong. I demand a second opinion.

Looks like the only running I need to be doing is on a treadmill!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Just checking in... nobody thinks I've checked out! I'll be back tomorrow with a new post.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

10 for 10 Challenge Recap: January

My internet has been down so I am blogging to you from my dad's house until we get ours back up and running (thanks Dad!). It is the end of the first month of our new year and I'd like to keep a tally of how things are going so far:

1. 365 Days of Sexytime: We did pretty well, but we have to make up for five missed times plus today's, so six more times - I shouldn't be here! I should be at home in bed with the husby!!! AHHHH!

2. 20 + 10 = 30 lbs. to lose: For those of you who already knew this, last Monday I chose to eat vegetarian until this evening. I did pretty well until yesterday afternoon when I made my daughter a grilled cheese sandwich and then I lost it. I buckled and made myself one as well. It was amazing. Still, I have been keeping up with my gym time and yoga and I do believe my vegetarian weeklong cleanse helped because I LOST 5 POUNDS! I am now down to 150.

3. The Perfect Dinner Menu: I have found four definite meals that can qualify for cheap, yummy, healthy, and easy/quick to make. I have some great ones to try for February!

4. Pray Every Day: Sometimes it's hard to remember this one, I won't lie. But I do my best to say something to God every day, even if it's, Hey Man, thanks for sticking around. I need to improve it though, I know.

5. Become more organized: This one is coming along quite well! We are waiting on our tax returns so that I can go shopping and buy more totes and organizing systems for the house. We've been purging and going to the local Goodwill on an almost-daily basis all month.

6. Ten Percent Fund: I don't make alot of money per paycheck so insofar I have only saved $8.00. Bleh.

7. Keep In Touch: I've been doing about 50% on this one. There are people I intentionally avoid and lately my mother and I have been lacking in our communicative efforts when we used to speak daily. In fact she just called - I'll need to call her back in a few minutes.

8. Recycle: Such an easy one! Do you have any idea how easy it is to recycle?! And it really helps me with the volume of garbage under our sink. It also allows me to look at all of the containers we clean before recycling them to see if I can use them for another purpose in our home - for example, we save peanut butter jars to hold hardware, arts and crafts supplies, etc.

9. Stop Swearing: I REALLY need to work on this one. In fact, for Lent I have decided this is what I will give up. Just an extra motivation to keep me from polluting the air with my foul language.

10. Make Time For Me: I've done really well with this. Bathing to relax, naps, dressing up nicely, reading a good book. I hope to continue this pattern!

Friday, January 22, 2010


Yes yes it's your favorite resolution. Can we have sexual intercourse at least 365 times in 2010? Well, let's see. Today is January 22, 2010. Since New Year's Day my husband and I have had sex 16 times. Not so shabby! We will have to start making up for it though as I seriously doubt either of us will be able to handle that number in one day when the 31st comes! So it seems we will be stepping up our daily quota.

In other Resolution Revolution news...

I've been going to the gym every other day. On my off days I do yoga and core exercises. Next week as a tactic to lose weight and to help out my son (in case you don't already know, I nurse him and he is allergic to milk proteins, so no more dairy for me for awhile) I am going to eat nothing except fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. I already have blended juices for breakfasts - today I had one with a whole peach, a quarter cup of blackberry/raspberry/blueberry mix, and a cup and a half of orange juice - with a whole carrot and a stick of celery thrown in. Not the best one I've had this week - next week I'll buy some more bananas and add more berries. My favorite one this week had all the berries I mentioned, plus strawberries, a banana, and a cup of Greek yogurt. Alas, no more yogurt for me. I think mine next week will be orange juice, a banana, mixed berries, a whole peach, and possibly a little peanut butter to smooth it up.

I like smoothies, can you tell?!

I've also been spending lots of time with my dad lately. He's not feeling well. Tonight I brought him some of the leftover chicken pesto soup as well as some Robitussin, cough drops, and zinc tablets. If you are reading this, Dad - you had better be following my orders! Turn on your heat, eat the soup, take the meds, and get in bed!!

I just realized that I was so busy today that I did not take any photographs! I'm lame! What is a blog without pictures? My apologies.

Tonight we are eating a lovely lasagna that my friend Kerry in New Jersey makes for her family. She was kind enough to share the recipe. It has sausage and roasted red peppers in it! Yes it has cheese but I am allowed cheese in moderation - and I haven't had any all day! I have been VERY good.

I just wanted to give a quick update on my other resolutions' progress as all I've written all week are recipe resolutions. I'll come back tomorrow with pictures to make up for what will surely be a very boring entry.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Recipe: Chicken & Green Bean Soup with Pesto

My final recipe experiment for the month of January 2010. Another one from Rachael Ray's website. Here's what's up:


•1 cup basil leaves, lightly packed (a trick I learned - if you don't have access to fresh herbs, you can cook dried ones in warm water and achieve the same effect)
•1/2 cup flat leaf parsley (a couple of handfuls)
•1/4 cup dill (a handful)
•1/4 cup lightly toasted shelled pistachios or pine nuts
•1 clove garlic, finely chopped and mashed into paste with a little salt or grated
•1/3 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese (a generous handful)
•Salt and pepper
•1/3-1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), plus 2 tablespoons, divided
•3/4 pound chicken tenders, chopped into 1/2-inch dice
•1 medium to large onion, chopped into 1/2-inch dice
•2 ribs celery from heart, chopped
•1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped
•1 small red bell pepper, finely chopped
•1 bay leaf
•8 cups chicken stock or 6 cups chicken stock, plus 2 cups water
•2 cups frozen French-cut green beans
•1 cup small cut pasta, such as small penne or ditalini


Combine the herbs, nuts, garlic and grated cheese in a food processor. While the machine is running, stream in the EVOO, about 1/3 cup, to make a pesto. Scrape the sauce into a small dish and reserve.

In a large Dutch oven or soup pot, heat 2 tablespoons EVOO, two turns if the pan, over medium heat. Add the chicken and lightly brown, 3-4 minutes. Add the onion, celery, carrot, bell pepper and bay leaf and season with salt and pepper. Sauté for 4-5 minutes more.

Add the stock and/or water and bring to a boil. Stir in the green beans and pasta and keep at a low boil until the pasta is cooked to al dente.

Serve the soup in shallow bowls and stir in rounded tablespoonfuls of pesto.


Chris gave out another "8" rating tonight - he said the soup felt "lonely" without a grilled cheese sandwich. It was really tasty though, probably the best homemade chicken noodle soup I've ever had and definitely the fastest (it only took 40 minutes, excluding chopping time). My whole house smells like chicken noodle soup now and makes me think of my mom. Also, I learned to make my own pesto - pretty cool! Of course it was missing a little something that I couldn't put my finger on, so now I'm determined to continue experimenting with that.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Recipe: Tomato-Pesto Chicken Pasta Bake

This is not the recipe I was intending on making this evening but I am currently out of chicken stock AND chicken broth and just didn't feel like going to the store. So tonight my wonderful husband assisted me in making this amazing and simple dish.

Here's what's up...


1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast tenderloins, cut into bite-size pieces
1/2 cup basil pesto
3 plum tomatoes
Shredded mozzarella cheese
Shredded parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
Spaghetti noodles


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Put pesto and chicken in bowl. Toss until chicken is covered. Place in casserole dish. Bake for 20-25 minutes, uncovered.

Meanwhile, in a pot of boiling water cook spaghetti noodles until al dente. Strain and toss with remaining pesto.

Place slices of tomato on top of chicken and sprinkle with cheese. Bake another 3-5 minutes.


We have eaten this meal before and it really is AMAZING. Chris rates it an "8".

Also, we treated ourselves to a yummy dessert that my friend Chelsea likes to make. It's very simple. It's banana "ice cream" - basically a frozen banana pureed in a food processor. We also made some simple homemade chocolate sauce out of a cup of semi-sweet morsels and 3/4 of a cup of heavy cream (with three teaspoons sugar added).

My son apparently has a milk protein allergy and because I am nursing him I'll have to seriously cut back on all things dairy. I am allowed cheese in moderation but aside from that, tonight is my last night with dairy for the next month. So it looks like February will be a BIG challenge for finding good meals!

Recipe: Crayon Cupcakes

Now, while this is not an edible recipe, I just could not resist posting it for all of my mommy friends. Lots of people do this but apparently not as many as I'd thought! It is very easy and lots of fun. Here's what's up:


Crayons (preferably broken nidbits but if all you have are nice pretty perfect ones those are fine too - but you'll have to break them)

Foil cupcake liners

Cupcake tin


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place cupcake liners in tin. Place broken pieces of crayons into each liner. (For example greens in one, pinks in another.)

Bake for 10 minutes, let cool. Peel liners off and have fun scribbling!

I'll be back later tonight with my final January recipe experiment.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Get your game face on

Today my husband and I started attending our church's new adult Sunday School program put on by our old friend Colin Kerr. It's a 23-part series and today was the first day of the series. The opening segment focused on the importance of truth and the Bible.

I love going to church. Not only does it allow me time with God, it forces me to take time for myself in the make up and cute outfit department.

My hair was a little crazy thanks to the ultra sexyyy humidity that is so famous in the South. It was one of those off-again, on-again rainy days.

I collect vintage flower pins (and earrings too). You'll see me wearing them as often as possible. This one is a favorite.

It's hard for me to match these boots to the right outfit. So far this is actually the only one that they look good with. I think it's the pencil skirt and the tights that make them work.

My dad watched the kidlets today while my husband and I went to church. This is the first time we haven't brought the children with us to church. But we really needed the break. Here's Chris playing soccer with some of the kids from our church.

All the girls decided they wanted to be on his team.

The team taking a break.

This is Betsy at my dad's house when we went to go pick up her and her brother.

Tonight we are going to my stepmother's because we don't have cable and Chris wants to watch the Chargers-Jets game. These are his two favorite teams so it will be interesting to see him react to whatever the outcome may be.

GO...Chets? Hm.