Tuesday, May 31, 2011


I have a new found addiction; Pinterest.  I can best describe Pinterest as a virtual bulletin board.  I always find really cool ideas for decorating, organizing, cooking, and then I add those I ideas to my favorites on my computer.  The problem is, I don't always organize my favorites in such a way that I know where to go back and find those cool ideas.  I also use 2 different computers, an iPad and my iPhone, so I have to figure out which device my favorite things are on.  Enter Pinterest. Problem solved.  When I see something I love, I simply "pin it" to one of my boards.  I have boards for recipes I'd like to try, sweets that look too good to eat, home decorating ideas, stuff I just simply like or find funny, fashion finds, etc...

It's really handy because all the things I want to find are in one spot.  It's also fun to see what others have "pinned" to their boards.  I made a Greek Burger that I found on someone else's board and it was delish; definitely pin worthy!  I urge you to check it out, but be warned, it is addicting!  There's even an app for the iPhone so I can pin on the go.  If you get sucked in by this latest craze, be sure to let me know!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

The Red, White, & Blue

Thursday, May 26, 2011

2 of My Favorite Things

1. My Dad
2. Ketchup
How are these 2 related? I shall tell you. Mom and Dad went on a trip to New Orleans recently and Dad encountered Red Gold brand ketchup.  At first, he was irritated, he is a Heinz man through and through.  Any other ketchup is considered an "off brand" and the restaurant must be "too cheap" to get the good stuff.  Are you sensing that Daddy-O doesn't like change?  Upon trying this new ketchup find, he quickly decided that this was his new favorite brand.  Once they got home from their travels, he promptly wanted to pick up some of his new favorite condiment.  Well, guess what? We can't get Red Gold here in Oklahoma; or can we?  Dad went straight to the  internet and ordered up a case of it.  He very kindly shared part of his precious cargo with me.  So see, this really is the story of how 2 of my favorite things are related.  I'm sure it's kept you on the edge of your seats. 

Monday, May 23, 2011

Bakin' Bacon

I hate the mess of frying bacon.  I read about doing it in the oven a while back, but I didn't think that sounded like a very good idea.  Yesterday I needed to cook 3 pounds of bacon and the thought of the big, greasy mess was overwhelming.  I went in search of just how you go about bakin' bacon. Let me tell you, it was super easy and the bacon was great.  I may never go back to pan frying again.  Here's how I did it:
  • Preheat oven to 400
  • Line a shallow baking sheet with foil (to keep clean up easy)
  • Lay bacon strips on pan without over crowding. 
  • Bake for 20-30 minutes depending on thickness of bacon.
  • Remove from oven and put bacon on paper towels to drain.
My bacon was thick cut and it took closer to 30 minutes. Just start watching it at about the 20 minute mark and see how it looks.  If you are feeling fancy, sprinkle brown sugar over the bacon before you bake it...  That's some good stuff!  After I was finished with all 3 batches of bacon, I left the pan to cool completely so the bacon grease would solidify.  That way, I could just lift out the foil without the risk of getting the bacon grease everywhere.  I highly recommend this method, give it a try!  You know BLT season is here and I am planning to pre-cook a bunch of bacon to have on hand for my favorite summer sammy!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Making Eyes

I'm not a cosmetic counter make up buyer.  I shared my drug store products with you in this post.  I recently had the opportunity to try DiorShow Blackout mascara.  Let's just say I ran out and got some the next day.  It cost 3 times what I normally spend on my favorite drug store brand, but I never had to put the wand back in the tube to "reload" it. I think the cost will even out because I won't need to purchase a new mascara nearly as often. 

I also purchased Mac Sudio Fix powder foundation.  The jury is still out on this one.  I'm not sure I like it any better than what I was using before.  I hear I may need a primer, so I will check into that next time I'm at the mall. 

What higher end products do you swear by?  Do you splurge on makeup?  Do tell.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

What i Want Wednesday

I am loving the tie waist shorts that are out right now.  I especially love these from Old Navy and Loft has several styles to choose from. For the first time in a couple of years, I have had pretty good luck with finding shorts I like.  I have found there are several "in between" lengths that work well for me.  I can't wear those teeny tiny short shorts (the kind that make you go hmmmmm, when "ladies" of a certain age are wearing them; the ones where the zipper is like 2 inches long) and so often, the only other options are super long "mom" looking shorts. Another style I really got into last year are the boyfriend shorts.  That seems to still be going pretty strong, so I will pick up a couple pairs of tie waist shorts and be all set for Summmmaaaah!   

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Jersey Girls

Did you watch the premiere?  This group is always such a train wreck, but I can't stop watching.  I'm kind of liking the new girl and I think Caroline "The Matricarch" Manzo is exaclty right; she and Teresa can't stand each other because they are so much alike.  Oh, Mama Caroline, you are so wise.   

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Crockpot Cooking...it's not just for Winter

I always equate crock pot cooking with cold winter days.  I recently got a new crock pot and wanted to try it out, even thought we are well into May and winter is long gone (although it hasn't felt like it around here).  I went for a Mexican Chicken recipe that I thought would make a great chicken taco salad.  We loved this recipe and I even turned the leftovers into a soup.  I just added a can of chicken broth and a little more of each of the spices, and voila, a whole different meal for lunch today. 

 Put 1 bag of boneless skinless chicken breasts in crock pot (mine were frozen when I added them)
 Slice an onion and chop up a jalapeno and put it on top of the chicken.
I used red onion because that's what I had on hand.

Mix the Rotel tomatoes with 1 T each of Cumin, Chili Powder, and Oregano. Add 3 cloves of chopped garlic and salt and pepper to taste.

 Pour mixture over chicken.

Cook on low 6-8 hours. 
If you aren't using frozen chicken you could probably be ready to eat in closer to 4 hours.

Like I said earlier, we used this for chicken taco salads, but you could do wraps or chicken nachos or whatever floats your boat.  I'm thinking I may be using my crock pot more frequently...even through the summer months. The idea of spending a day of fun in the sun and coming home to dinner sounds fabulous!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Commercial Free Zone

I got the idea for this post from Rachel's blog post about her favorite commercial right now. Almost every show I watch is on my DVR so that I can zip right through the commercials.  I can watch an hour show in about 45 minutes.  When you have as many shows to watch as I do, this is quite the time saver!  The thing that I find happening more and more is when people are talking about funny commercial they saw...I have no idea what they are talking about.  I will find myself forwarding through commercials and catch a glimpse of one that I have heard people talk about; so I will rewind and watch it.  I love the convenience of the DVR but I think I do miss seeing some of those funny commercials.  However, I have decided there are way too many annoying ones to make up for it.  What are your favorite commercials right now?

Monday, May 9, 2011

Picking Paint

I am the world's worst at picking paint colors.  Hence, I have fallen in love with these sample size paints from Valspar.  They are under $3 at Lowe's and saved me a bundle this weekend.  I felt sure that I had nailed down my paint color for our bathroom, but wanted to have a sample mixed up just to see.  Well, 4 paint samples later, I found it.  The original color I had picked was way too dark and I would have hated it! I even changed my mind on our bedroom color; deciding to use one of the samples that I didn't like for the bathroom but I think would be great for the bedroom.  If you are in the market for paint, I highly recommend these babies. 

Friday, May 6, 2011

Soda Substitute

My "fizz" fix

Since I've kicked my Diet Coke habit (for now), I miss "fizz".  I found this flavored sparkling water at Wal-Mart, and once I saw it was sweetened with Stevia, I jumped on it like a spider monkey. I have been drinking lots of water and teas and really wanted something sweet and fizzy.  Since my old friend champagne was out as well, I was overly a little excited about my find. I'm not a fan of overly sweet drinks and I really liked this.  Now, I don't know if it's because it IS really good or if it's a case of  "you would be really amazed at what tastes good after weeks of deprivation healthy eating." So, take my recommendation with a grain of salt, but if you are looking for a soda subsitute this may work for you too. As for a champagne substitute, not so much.  How do I know? Well, I may or may not have poured this into a champagne flute the second I got home from the store.  How was it?  FAIL. 

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Something Borrowed

This book has been out forever.  Typically, I enjoy chick lit and and I especially enjoy a series.  For whatever reason, I hadn't read this little gem.  I just had no interest in it...until I saw the movie was coming out.  I saw the previews for it when I went to see my boyfriend  Russel Brand in Arthur.  Somehow this book made it to the top of my must read list.  A friend at work brought me the whole series and I finished Something Borrowed very quickly: A) it was an easy read, B) I really liked it, and C) I really wanted to read it before seeing the movie.  I just cannot read a book once I've seen the movie.  I love the conjuring up of what the characters look like in my mind part of reading that is lost when you see the movie first.  Seeing the previews was almost a little much.  I just kept seeing Kate Hudson and Ginnifer Goodwin in my mind.  At the time, I didn't realize who the other characters were being played by and I purposefully did not want to find out.  I love John Krasinski but he wasn't "my" Ethan.  And this Colin Egglesfield dude, he's cute, but again, not "my" Dex.  On the flip side though, I love reading a book then finding out later it's being made into a movie.  I am always excited to see who's been cast and how they match up to mental images I have made. So, will you be seeing this one?  I think it's a date for my mom and I on Mother's Day.

Sidenote: A couple of other books I read that have been recently cast are The Help and The Hunger Games.I must say, that's some iffy casting if you ask me.  I'm sure I'll feel differently once I see the movies.  I felt the same way about RPat as Edward in Twilight.  I was skeeved out by him to say the least.  I know some of you still are. I, however, am  not...like the opposite of not.  SOOOO not. No, I am not one of those Twilight T-shirt wearing moms, but he didn't hurt my eyes when I watched if you get my drift. Don't judge.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

A Little Piece of Mom

This ring belongs to my mother.  No, she didn't go buy it because of the sudden popularity of said ring.  She's had it for years.  My mother has always been BIG into jewelry.  I personally wear the same jewelry everyday, except for earrings and necklaces. One of the things that I just love about my mother is her affinity for baubles, and I don't mean of the costume variety.  She is letting me borrow this one so I can live out my royal fantasies. Plus, it's really fun to have a little piece of mom with me everyday.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Look How Grown Up I Am

The adult version of  a beer can pyramid...
how adult am I that I even thought of this?
Along with my new diet  lifetyle change, I have found a new vice. I used to drink Diet Coke or even guzzle sip wine in the evenings.  Since I'm staying away from artificial sweeteners and sugars I've had to find a substitute. It started more as just something to keep me occupied, but it has grown into a full blown obsession.  I cannot walk down the tea aisle without picking up a new variety, I have amassed quite a collection in the last few weeks.  Given my obsession with all things British (thank you, Royal Wedding), I guess I should be feeling rather regal, huh?  Oh, and yes, I do have a favorite.  See that Twinings Herbal Unwind with the green apples on it?  MMMMMMM!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

The Best Think I Ever Ate...this week

As eluded to in last weeks post, the diet is still in full force.  I thought I would take this opportunity to introduce you to my friend.  Not a lot of people like her, but I think it's because they just don't know her very well.  
Meet Fennel. 
Isn't she pretty? 
Fennel is allowed on my diet so I've been using it when I can find it.  If you've tasted raw fennel it can be kind of an acquired taste because it has a hint of licorice to it.  I personally love licorice, but I know it's one of those things that people either love or hate.  Because of my love of licorice, I love raw fennel thinly sliced in salads.  If you really want to change the flavor up, try roasting it.  It really mellows out the flavors and changes the texture completely.  So, want to roast some fennel? Here we go:
  • See those green fronds, chop 'em right off.  I've heard some people use them but I just toss them.  See where the stalks are growing out of the bulb?  That's where you want to cut.  All you need is the bulb part. 
  • Cut off the bottom where you will find a hard "stemmy" piece. 
  • Cut the bulb in half then quarter it. Then, take the quarters and slice them into fourths.  
  • Toss in olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. 
  • Roast at 400 degrees for 20-30 minutes, the longer you cook it the softer it will become.  I don't mind a little crunch but if you want it softer, cook it a little longer.   
  • Squeeze some fresh lemon over it before serving.

This is after about 20 minutes.  I stuck it back in for another few minutes just to get some more color on it.  The brown parts are my fave!  So, please introduce yourself to my friend, Fennel.  I think you may like her too.