Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Sweet strawberries covered in chocolate

My alarm went off again at 5:15am this morning and I snoozed and snoozed and snoozed. Oooops. Tonight, I need to be in bed by 9:30pm and reading. Sleep is good, but the gym needs to fit into my schedule somehow! Tomorrow... really, I promise!

Hunger reared its ugly head around 10:30am and I scarfed down some cheese crackers. The lunch hour came around and I heated up some leftover pasta and my leftover salad from my sushi dinner from last night. Delish!

Just about the time that I started craving something sweet... in popped our promotional manager with this beauty!

A gorgeous edible arrangement! White chocolate covered strawberries, pineapple and grapes. So good! I had 4 strawberries (3 covered) some pineapple and a few grapes.
Then my stomach started to ache a little. Remember when your mama told you not to eat too much candy because you might get a stomach ache? I should have listened to mama!
About 30 minutes later I decided that I needed to do a mini workout in the studio. I recently found this website - lots of great recipes - but also a mini workout that she calls her "Get out of Bed in the Morning" workout! I did it in the studio with the door closed. It took about 20 minutes and I was sweating by the end! Check it out! I bet you could do it on a break in the afternoon in your office! It left me with a boat-load of energy for my afternoon of shopping!
Dinner tonight was leftover sushi - I figured why take another picture of it - you saw it already! A few pieces of the spicy tuna and a few pieces of the perfect roll, still not sure which roll was which! But they were all good! I also munched on a piece of olive foccacia. I'm currently sipping on some Sleepytime tea and getting ready for bed. I will make it to the gym tomorrow morning!!! It will happen!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Salty olive foccacia & a shedding snake

What do these two things have in common? They were both a part of my last two days...

Like I said earlier, I was on my own this weekend, the fiancee was in the Poconos for the weekend with his bachelor's...... I don't ask questions.... I get my weekend in Ocean City, Maryland the first weekend of August :)

So, I woke up bright and early Saturday morning with all intentions of doing all kinds of stuff around the house while the man was gone. Some of it happened....

What did happen? I went to the gym for the longest workout of my short life. I was on the elliptical for 45 minutes and then I did 20 minutes of back exercises. It was glorious. I wish I had that kind of time during the week, but, alas, I do not...

Still not hungry for breakfast (will this ever change? I'm just not hungry until 11:30am-ish...?? Oh well.) By the time I got back from the gym I devoured a big bowl of pineapple and blueberries (NJ blueberries, of course).

And a turkey melt. That's not a burnt edge, the bread just wanted to be colorful. ;) Turkey slices on Wonder Smart bread - my new fav! - 1 Weight Watcher point for 2 slices,but it's soft and spongy just like white bread.... lurv lurv lurv.

Saturday afternoon was dedicated to making 300 wine charms for my wedding (that ended up taking all afternoon and much of the evening..ouch!) and my first ever attempt at baking homemade bread. I saw this recipe over at a wonderful website - The Pioneer Woman. I only added two of my final pictures because no pics of mine will ever compare to hers! She's a wonderful photographer and a cookbook author!
Olive Foccacia -

The above was with parm cheese, the below with no parm cheese. The above is much much much better. The bottom loaf actually came out a little hard and crunchy instead of the above crunchy outside and soft and chewy inside.
The recipe calls for a sprinkling of sea salt of the outside of the loaf before baking, I would leave that step out. They came out a tad bit salty, but they were good! I would say it was a successful first bread baking attempt :)

A few pieces of foccacia later and I wasn't hungry for lunch, but dinner was a leftover pasta party. A very juicy (South Carolina...) peach and another piece of foccacia.

Sunday came and went without event, just some shopping for wedding stuff. I set my alarm Monday morning for 5:15am, but I snoozed until 6:30 and didn't feel a bit guilty. Sleep is more important sometimes. Tomorrow is a different story...
Dinner was sushi takeout! Super yummy! I have been craving good sushi for a while now - tonight was my breaking point. I HAD to have it! I ordered 3 rolls (spicy tuna, perfect roll and something else that I can't remember the name of...) Also some spicy Thai soup and a salad with ginger dressing. Delish!

Now onto the shedding snake. A few weeks ago a neighbor came over to tell us that his wife had seen a very big snake in our front yard. Um scary. Tonight the man noticed a piece of snake skin coming out of one of bushes..... um scarier...
See that straight thing that looks like a piece of fishnet? That's snake skin!

And when you look deep into the bush, this is what you see.....

I will have nightmares. I have already called animal control. I'm scared to walk out of my front door. I'm scared the snake will get into my house and eat my cat whole. Or the bunnies that run through our yard. Or the chipmunks. Oh my.
I called my dad. Because that's where I turn for advice. He said get a sharp shovel and take the snakes head off. WTH? I could never do that, I couldn't kill a snake. He said, "it's a snake, a reptile..." Whatever dad, he grew up on a farm, I guess that's how he was raised. Me, on the other hand, can't hurt a fly. Hopefully animal control will call tomorrow and come take the little (or huge) snake back to its normal habitat.
I will tell you all about my nightmares tomorrow. I could never live on a farm.

A Hunka Hunka Burning Love kind of weekend...

More on Elvis in a minute....

First - in French Press news - remember how I kept casually mentioning on this here bloggy that I had a mini 3-cup French Press on my wedding registry?? Well, I got it! One of our good friends sent us the press, espresso and cappuccino cups (for our BANGING espresso machine the in laws are giving us for the shower....pics as soon as I have it in my possession!) . So nice! BUT, the French Press was shattered. :( so sad. I sent it back to Macy's and I'm awaiting my gift card replacement, so I can turn around and buy it again! Can't wait! Hurry up Macy's!

Thursday evening the fiancee' headed to happy hour with one of his buddies, so I was on my own for dinner. I used to cook all the time for myself and I enjoyed it. But the fiancee is such a wonderful cook, I haven't had to cook for myself all that much over the past years. Usually I can last on leftovers from something he has made, but on this particular evening, we had nothing in the fridge. So, I busted out the canned tomatoes and whole wheat pasta!

Start by sauteing garlic and red pepper flakes in olive oil.

Next up, the tomatoes. Only San Marzano tomatoes will do. Seriously, unless you have fresh tomatoes, use these. They are more expensive, but worth every single penny.

Smoosh the whole tomatoes with the back of a wooden spoon or crush them in your hands. Or just leave them whole, they will cook down.

Simmer as long as you can. I put a cover on mine for a while because it was cooking down too quickly. I also added some basil and parsley from our garden. And earlier some dried oregano. Always add dried herbs early, fresh one later...

Simmer simmer. I boiled a pound of whole wheat linguine and added it to the sauce and about 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water. Sprinkled with parm cheese and enjoyed!! Lovely dinner, better leftovers!

Friday began with Sun Chips and cheese crackers. Why was I starving at 10am? A little People, Country Special (hottest men of country music) and my Friday was off....

Lunch came in the form of a BBQ in the back parking lot at work! We attempted to have a Memorial Day BBQ at work, but it fell through.... This was our makeup! I had crab cake sandwich with some pasta salad and greens. Really good!

Friday evening I headed with the MIL and SIL and another friend to Blackwood, NJ. The SIL is a HUGE Elvis fan. There was a guy named Doug Church performing. This is my second time seeing him - and I really enjoy it! Call me crazy, but I love it! It's so fun! I was (with the exception of my MIL) the youngest person there by at least 30 years! No joke! But it was a great night! They have a great dinner buffet with tortellini, salad, chicken, veggies and a carving station. Really good, sorry no pics. But I do have plenty of pics of Elvis, I mean Doug Church!

Hilarious! But so much fun! He's coming back in October and you best believe I will have my tickets in hand!
Anywho, I was on my own this weekend because the fiancee was kidnapped for a Bachelor's Weekend with the guys! More on what I did at home all by myself later!
I always get more done when he's not home! Why is that, I wonder???

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Wednesday and Thursday

Check out my new lunch bag!! So cool! I'm in love with green paisley. Got mine from www.qvc.com. I'm a little addicted to their "Today's Special Value"...... I got this lunch bag and a huge matching bag for picnics, road, trips, etc. So fun! For only $25! Gotta love QVC!

Insulation is key!

On to the eats, I figured I would group my meals for the past 2 days, since I'm in catch up mode....
Blueberries and grapes plus coffee.

Just blueberries today, plus coffee.

It's the same meal for lunch the past two afternoons. Boring. Turkey sammy's and sugar snaps.

Add another South Carolina peach...

My stomach was a little upset after I took my next-to-last antibiotic for my chest infection, so I munched on some cheese crackers that seemed to help a little.

So, in a small recap of the last few days...
I'm down another pound!!!
It's been SO hot in the Northeast!
Tonight is the first night that I don't have anything planned except organizing more wedding stuff. Which includes getting crafty.....

My Garden

My first real harvest from my garden!!! Only 2 radishes, despite the fact that the plants are taking over! They are at least 4 feet tall with flowers, pretty, but I want more radishes!

Also a small handful of English peas. I shucked them and they are happily awaiting a steam, yummo.

But here is my super star! Look at all of those sugar snap peas!! I'm so proud of myself! They are beautiful and delicious!


Anndddd, I'm back! Sorry for my absence, but it has been a crazy 2 weeks in Georgia-land! I was sick for the first week (I'm still recovering from a bacterial chest infection...) and this week has been wedding-crazed! Got most of our invitations out this past weekend, a few more still to get in the mail. (After a little drama, that my MIL THANKFULLY took care of!) Also, I'm trying to think of all the little things that need to be done the week of the wedding and I'm attempting to take care of them this week. That's quite a task! Anywho....I'm back to the world of blogs, thank goodness!

I won't go too far back with all of my eats.

Let's start with Tuesday..

I have not been craving breakfast at all recently, but I figure it's important to get something (besides coffee) into my belly in the AM hours. It has come in the form of fruit. An orange and a peach. A South Carolina peach to be specific.

Let's talk about this.

I'm from Georgia, born and raised a sweet, southern, hospitable young female.

Georgia is the Peach State.

South Carolina has better peaches than Georgia.

There, I said it.

It's taken many years in therapy to be able to say that.

Moving on, quickly.

Lookout for a "Garden Post" coming up because my little garden is in full swing! Here's a sneek peak from my lunch last Tuesday.... SUGAR SNAP PEAS!!

Oh, and a turkey sandwich. But the star is the homegrown sugar snaps. They taste like they have been bathed in sweet little sugar crystals...yum.

As I was working on Tuesday, I was invited to go to the Hilton Casino at 6pm that evening. Short notice, but totally worth it! The casino had a flood a little while back on their second floor that houses all of the restaurants. Well, they have all been renovated and I was lucky enough to be invited to the "Press Party"! SO EXCITING!
I started with some champagne at Patsy's, I drank champagne all night! I felt so cool!
Patsy's had fried mozzarella, veg panini's, meatballs, lobster ravioli and stuffed squid. Everything was so good, but my fav was the fried mozzarella. I have a serious love for fried cheese. And burnt cheese...

Next we headed to Simon Prime, this used to the The Oak Room. So elegant. Very nicely decorated, I had another glass of champagne and oysters Rockefeller. Delish.

We moved on to the Chairman's Club. This is a private room for Hilton's elite members. So, in other words, I will never be in this room again! lol. They served cherry tomatoes stuffed with crab meat and a filet crostini with a wine sauce. Very tasty. The drink was from Simon Prime and it was called "A Latin Lover"! How funny, but I'm not crazy about tequila, so I left most of it right there on that table.

Next was Nick's Burger Bar. Very cool atmosphere, big screen HD tv's and tons of beer on tap. They were serving burgers of all types. I had a bite of a lamb and goat cheese burger, a bison burger and buffalo calamari. So, good. I had another glass of champagne! Sorry the pic is sideways...

There is a coffee shop that had some items on display, but, come on, let's be serious. When there is a chicken salad wrap next to a filet mignon crostini, which would you choose to eat? Ok, then. We skipped the coffee shop. Moved on to Ono Pan-Asian Bistro and Bar.
Don't mind if I do....
Decided on white wine this time, I figured it would go well with sushi!

And it did! Red and white tuna with sushi rice, a duck spring roll, a small piece of pork tenderloin and a little fried piece of Sea Bass heaven. OMG, delightful.

The view ain't too bad, either....
All in all I kept my portions in check and went home feeling perfectly full and bubbly. From the champagne, of course!
However, I didn't get anything done when I finally got home, I just fell into bed. Good thing I went to the gym Tuesday morning.... I actually got up and went Wednesday, too!

Monday, June 21, 2010

M-I-A & S-I-C-K

Well, hello there! Sorry to be MIA for the past week or so. I got a horrible bacterial chest infection. Yum. Lots of antibiotics and some really strong cough syrup, I'm feeling much better. However, the lingering cough is still, well, lingering. But I will be back with all kinds of fun posts soon!

I've basically eaten nothing but soup and drank nothing but tea and that makes for some really boring pictures!

The cough syrup (the kind that makes you feel drunk...) also really decreased my appetite, so my stomach shrank a little bit and my eating has been way off.

But it's time to get back to the life of the healthy! I need veggies in my world ASAP!

Be back soon with fun fiancee created meals and possibly a stab at baking my own bread!!??

Monday, June 14, 2010

Oh no!

And I'm sick.


Darn it!

It was too late to call in for work and I had a busy Monday anyways, so off I went. I felt like crap, but I trekked on.

Breakfast looked like this -

I probably drank 15 cups of tea today, it was the only thing that would soothe my sore throat.

My lunch consisted of TJ's organic lentil soup, more tea and Halls for my throat. Having to talk for a living when you're sick is not fun. It takes a lot out of you to try to sound happy and healthy!

The soup was just what I needed to help me make it through the day. My whole body aches!

I came home and ate some ice cream (another great way to soothe my throat! Good excuse....) and some more soup. I didn't have the energy to take a picture, sorry. Now I'm sipping on some tea about to watch True Blood and then take some Tylenol PM and go to bed! Hopefully I will feel better tomorrow! Lots of liquid and gargling with salt water. That's what my mom always had me do when I was younger and got a sore throat, it works!
Good night for now!

And a lazy Sunday

We slept in on Sunday and awoke to more Jimmy Dean sausage. Funny how we ended up eating Jimmie Dean products this weekend out of all the weekends throughout the year....

We also had some cucumbers and fava beans, sprinkled with salt.

Coffee, of course...

My turkey sausage sammy and hard bread and tomatoes and mozzarella cheese.

One of these days I will make hard bread. It's a basic whole wheat bread recipe that cooks for 48 hours in a 150 degree oven! It literally lasts forever after it's cooked.
The ribs were so good on Saturday that we decided to repeat the pool-side grilling on Sunday!

Pool-side beer for me while my fiancee slowly cooked our lunch. In the pool.

I needed a nap in the afternoon, the sun drains my energy! So, I read my book and dozed off for an hour or so and woke up to the smell of the grill for lunch! This time we used the real gas grill, not the charcoal one by the pool.
Burgers and corn. And the ribs, of course!

And some mashed up cauliflower.
My plate -

I met some girlfriends for dinner who were in town over in Sea Isle City. We went to Mike's Seafood, right on the water and the best seafood!
We started with some bread.

I wasn't super hungry, so I ordered the crab fingers.

And the crab chowder. It was kicking! (So said the description! It did have a nice spicy bite!)

Dinner with girlfriends is always a good thing. I headed home after dinner, I was anxious to sleep in my own bed, but it was a wonderful weekend and I'm so thankful that we are able to enjoy the shore!
However, on my way home, my throat started to hurt and I felt a little bit of congestion creeping about.....Uh oh.....