Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Hot Dog, Hot Dog, Hot Diggity Dog

I'm not really a fan of hot dogs... I mean, I eat them, but don't love them... until now.

I was being lazy on Sunday and flipping through the channels, trying to find some type of thoughtless, but not too thoughtless, television to watch.  Somehow, I landed on the Travel Channel... a channel I like, but don't watch often.  So, anyway, I am in my jammies, on the couch, watching the Travel Channel, actually, dozing off more than not and there must have been some type of Best of marathon going.  They were showing the best water parks, amusement parks, pizza and then hot dogs.  I don't think they were all in the same show, I was mindlessly watching.

But anyway, it was around lunch time and I was getting hungry when they started talking about hot dogs.  My first thought was Gross, but I seriously didn't have the energy to change the channel.  I kept thinking that I would doze off again, but it just wasn't happening.

So, I decided to perk up a little and actually watch the show.  As I did, they started talking about New York Style hot dogs... There are different styles of hot dogs? Since when?!? Anyway, they kept talking about these New York Style dogs and the creator of the Best NY Style hot dog.  It's a Nathan's hot dog.  Ever heard of it?  I had, but like I said, I'm not a big fan of hot dogs.

Of course, being that it was lunch time, and I was starving, these hot dogs began looking pretty good.  Then, the more I listened, the more interested I became in the back story.  And, being that I am such a sucker for a story, I began to kind of like the idea of trying a Nathan's hot dog.  I decided that it was something that I would have to give a try... someday, but it wasn't like I had to have it now.

However, today, I was wandering around Wal-Mart today and began to think about what I would fix for supper.  I racked my brain, search recipes online from my phone and combed the aisles looking for something to fix.  Then it hit me.  I'll get Chuck to grill hot dogs tonight... Nathan's hot dogs!

We, well, he, Chuck, grilled hot dogs tonight.  And was quite skeptical of how great I claimed these hot dogs would be...especially since I had never tried one. But, he grilled them anyway to pacify me.  Then I told him that in true NY fashion, he could only put mustard on it... no ketchup.  Now, he was definitely unimpressed with my idea.

But, being the sweet and loving hubby that he is, he did it.  He ate his Nathan's hot dog with just mustard, just like me.  I must say that we were both quite pleasantly surprised with just how good these hot dogs were.  And, Chuck was pretty impressed with the mustard only option, too!

These are big, fat, all beef hot dogs that are truly just like the ones you get at major sporting events.  I can't really say just what one looks for in a hot dog, but these have it.  They were so good that I ate two... and considered eating more, but I really got concerned that my belly just might pop from being so full!

And, usually, if Chuck grills hot dogs, I toss the left overs... There's no way I would eat a left over hot dog.  But, tonight, I wrapped these babies up for lunch tomorrow!  I've never been so excited about leftovers!!!

Now tonight, I can honestly say that I love hot dogs.  IF they are the right kind of hot dogs, Nathan's, grilled perfectly... not charred or even having little black lines... and served up with mustard only.

And, this new found love for these particular hot dogs has left me singing "Hot Dog, Hot Dog, Hot Diggity Dog"  from Mickey Mouse Clubhouse!  Crazy, I know!  Maybe it won't be stuck in my head too long!


Sunday, August 29, 2010

Deceptively Delicious, Recipe 6

Here's another Deceptively Delicious Recipe for you!

As with some of the other recipes in this book, I have my own version that I know off the top of my head.  It is much easier for me to prepare my version of these.  I can go to the store without a list and I can whip it up with out going back to a recipe.  Also, I like using my version and incorporating the hidden veggie to show that you can adjust any recipe to include a vegetable.

So, what was this week's recipe?  Chicken Salad.  Let me first say that my version of Chicken Salad is pretty healthy... Lots of chicken, grapes, apples, poppy seed, celery, relish and just a tiny bit of mayo.  But, with the help of this cookbook, I have turned my pretty healthy Chicken Salad, into a Really healthy Chicken Salad.

How do I do it?  Easy!  I just add a little bit of my cauliflower puree, and voila!

I have found that cauliflower puree is very easy to incorporate into recipes.  It has a very mild taste that seemingly takes on the flavors of whatever it is mixed with.  From my experience, it is one of the easiest veggies to disguise, which makes it a good one to start with... Especially if you have really picky eaters!

So, get in the kitchen and get cooking!  With a little slight of hand and the right puree, you'll have your family eating healthy without them ever realizing it.  And, you, too, can be Deceptively Delicious.


Saturday, August 28, 2010

All About the Little Things

Just want to put a little spotlight on one of my favorite blogs... All About the Little Things.  Not only is it written by my precious sister-in-law, it details the comings and goings of my family.  Since I am two hours away, and don't get to be in the midst of all the happenings, I love to read all about it.

Also, another reason I am so fond of this blog... as if I need another reason...  Jenn let me design a header for her!  Go check it out... right here!  I absolutely love designing things like that!  And, I'm pretty sure that if I keep changing my own blog, I'm going to start confusing you!

So, anyway, hop on over to All About the Little Things, and have a fabulous Saturday!


Friday, August 27, 2010

Five Question Friday





1. How many pets do you have? 

Two: Meiko, a Yorkie, and Macie, a Labrador. 

2. If you could switch places with anyone in the world for one day, who would it be?

For one day, I want to be a supermodel!  Either Heidi Klum or Gisele Bundchen.

3. What is your favorite money saving tip?

Take a banker shopping with you!  Seriously, my husband, the banker, can talk me out of buying anything without even saying a word.  They must teach some teach this trick in banking school.  Crazy mind games!

4. What do you want your kids to be when they grow up?

Happy!  Seriously, I don't care what career path they choose, or don't choose, as long as they are happy.  That's what my parents wanted for me and my siblings, which let us be exactly who we are.

5. What is your favorite quote?

"Life... it's about knowing what you want and eliminating everything you don't need to get there."




Wednesday, August 25, 2010

How do you answer...

So, I am trying something new.  I want to start some interactive posts.  So, every... so often, depending on you and your participation, I will be posting a How do you answer... post. 

Here's how it works:

1. I will pose a question and ask how you would answer.  Here's your first question:
      
      How do you answer the question, "What is Prayer?"

2. Copy the question and answer it on your blog... Or, if you don't have a blog, answer in the comments section below the post, and ta-da you are in!

3. Then come back to my blog and link up using the link below.
    
*Please note that you will have only a limited amount of time to answer and link up, so don't hesitate to answer and link up!

It will be fun to see how everyone answers each question!  And, of course, I will answer too!




How do you answer...

So, I am trying something new.  I want to start some interactive posts.  So, every... so often, depending on you and your participation, I will be posting a How do you answer... post. 


Here's how it works:


1. I will pose a question and ask how you would answer.  Here's your first question:
      
      How do you answer the question, "What is Prayer?"


2. Copy the question and answer it on your blog... Or, if you don't have a blog, answer in the comments       
    section below the post.


3. Then come back to my blog and link up using the link below.
    
*Please note that you will have only a limited amount of time to answer and link up, so don't hesitate to answer and link up!


It will be fun to see how everyone answers each question!  And, of course, I will answer too!



Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Imagine

"Siempre imagine que el Paraiso seria algĂșn tipo de biblioteca." 

"I have always imagined that Heaven would be some type of library."

-Jorge Luis Borges
(Argentinian Writer) 


Isn't it great to imagine!  I find myself thinking from time to time what Heaven will be like.  And, while I know that it will be amazing and beautiful, I don't know all the details of it.  I personally think a type of library would be amazing and beautiful... I am a bit of a nerd, though.  But, that would be just the beginning of what Heaven is like, if it were up to me.  


What would Heaven be like if it were up to you?  




Monday, August 23, 2010

A New Addition

I am so excited to announce that we will be adding another member to our family!  His name is Colten, and we are so excited to welcome him!

We are lucky to have him, and let's be honest... he's lucky to have us!  Just kidding, Colten... a little.  No, we are all really excited to welcome such a wonderful guy to our family.  He is kind and funny, and most importantly he loves my little sister... Not an easy feat.  Kidding Jena!

He proposed to my baby sister on Sunday, August 15, and our world has been rocked ever since... rocked in a good way!  Jena and Colten have been dating for a while, so we have all been anxiously awaiting this day.  We just didn't know that it would come when most everyone would be out of town.  My parents were in Iowa and I was in Birmingham.  Jenn, Justin and Laila were the only ones that were home and got to the ring, oh and, the happy couple!  Lucky dogs.  I had to wait until Friday and it just about did me in!  I can honestly say, though, that Jena was still radiant.

However, in true girly fashion, the plans have already begun, the details already being hammered out.  Since this is the last of the weddings my parents will be hosting, you can bet that perfection will be achieved!  The best just won't do for this event.  It will have to be the best of the best.  And, I think we have all made it our personal mission to ensure that Jena and Colten have nothing but the best!

I am so excited that I get to be a part of the planning and the whole experience.  I loved planning my wedding, and I have told Jena several times that she may have to remind me that this is HER wedding!

The wedding is still months away, and already I get teary-eyed over the details... which Jena yells at me not to cry because then she'll cry!  We both wind up crying and laughing simultaneously!  I can already tell that this is going to be a fun, but watery experience!

Oh, and, since she doesn't blog, you can count on me to share all the details... or at least the ones she'll let me share!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Pop's Back!

Pop came home Thursday!  And, we couldn't be happier!

Emma's Pop, my Daddy, spends his summers working in Iowa crop dusting corn and beans.  We all know that he will be going each summer around the fourth of July, and spend each day he is gone anxiously awaiting his return.  And while we know it is coming, I don't think we are ever truly prepared for the long days of his absence.

Especially me, especially now.

Why?  Well, because Emma is little and with little ones comes so much growth and change in rapid fashion.  So, each day that she doesn't see her Pop, the more he misses.  Not that anyone other than Chuck and myself 'see' all the changes that occur daily, but when Pop is gone for six weeks at a time, it just magnifies... to me anyway... what he and Emma miss.

It's hard enough to get to see Granna and Pop since we live a little over two hours away.  And, I want so badly for her to know them like I do.  I want her to be around them enough to be able to realize just how special they are... even if it takes her twenty years (like her Mama) to realize they are the greatest!

I admit, I'm still Daddy's Little Girl.  And I want Emma to be a Daddy's Girl.  But I want her to be Pop's Girl too.  After this weekend, I have no doubt that she will be both and will recognize just how special they both are.

When we arrived at Granna and Pop's this weekend, he unbuckled her and got her out of her seat.  I thought she was going to be a little shy since it had been a while since seeing him, and so I teared up even before I had reason!  She didn't, though.  She let him get her out and they went about playing.

They played outside... Emma's favorite thing to do... jumping on the trampoline, swinging her baby doll, scooping the water out of the pool and into her lap and riding the gator.  You wouldn't know that any time had passed, which also made me tear up!

Then Pop had to go out to the airport to finish some things up for the day before we went out for dinner.  When he left Emma with me, she was so upset!  She wanted to go with Pop!  She cried and would say "Poooooooop!"  I finally distracted her and calmed her down. We went to eat and she sat with him and ate off of his plate.  Then, once we got home, she led him all over the house and, I think she even talked him into getting her a Popsicle.

The next morning she looked for him and called for him repeatedly.  When he finally got back from riding his motorcycle and she saw him, she squealed with delight.  Her eyes and entire face lit up whenever he came into the room.

Laila came over Saturday afternoon, and I really don't know who was happier... the girls or Pop.  They played all afternoon.  He brought them pink My Little Ponies and you would have thought he handed them the world.  Emma and Laila both have carried those ponies everywhere ever since they got them!

All weekend long, every time Pop came near, Emma wanted him.  And, any time he left, she cried for him.  It was as heartwarming as it was heartbreaking!

When it came time for us to go, she cried as we backed out of the drive way.  The when we passed the airport she perked up and asked for Pop.  Once she realized that we weren't stopping to see him, another meltdown ensued.

Hopefully, it will be sooner rather than later when we see Pop, Granna, and the rest of the crew again.  As much as I am enjoying living in Meridian, I get terribly homesick for my family.  However, it is weekends like these that get me through to the next visit.

So, Granna, Pop, Jee-Jee, Uncle Justin, Aunt Jenn, Laila, Grandmother, Papaw, and the rest of the crew...

Miss ya already!  Love you!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Getting There

Slowly, but surely, I am getting our house put together.  I just got my new bedding and I am thrilled with it!

Yes, it is a little on the summer side... It was ready early this summer, but I just couldn't  get myself together enough to pick it up.  Oh well... I am going to enjoy it a while before getting a fall set made.

                                             
       





Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Masterpiece

                                            
 

Monday, August 16, 2010

Falling Off the Face of the Earth

Sorry about that!  I didn't meant to just disappear over the weekend.  I had every intention of blogging and keeping you updated with our trip this weekend, but it didn't quite happen.  I took my computer, and even had it up and going... only to find out that I didn't have internet service.  Ugh!  I hate when that happens.

I know I can mobile blog, but, either I am slow or mobile blogging just isn't as easy as it seems.  Either way, I just don't like mobile blogging.  So, I fell off the face of the earth without warning.

Stay tuned this week, though!  I have all sorts of news, updates and pictures for you!

Happy Monday!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Deceptively Delicious, Recipe 5

Though it has been a while since I told you about my Deceptively Delicious project, I am still hard at it.  One of the latest recipes I have tried is Chicken Nuggets.

These were super yummy!  And, fairly easy.  You take chicken breast and cut them into the size nuggets you want.  Then, you dip them into sweet potato puree mixed with an egg.  Next, you dip them into a mixture of Panko, milled flaxseed, garlic powder, onion powder and some other seasonings.

Finally, you pan-fry them in a skillet of 1 tablespoon of olive oil.  I followed the book's recipe exactly, and my chicken nuggets turned out really good... tasting that is.  They were pretty ugly to look at!  For whatever reason, I can not pan-fry anything!  My batter fell off some of them... What's that all about?

After finishing the first batch, I decided to add a little Tony Chachere's to the Panko mixture.  This just gave it a little kick, which I prefer.  Actually, I rarely eat anything without some sort of spicy seasoning on it.

But, anyway, since I am terrible at pan-frying, I thought I would try baking the second batch of nuggets.  I really think this would have worked, except for the fact that I forgot about them.  How?  I'm not really sure because I was in the kitchen.  Emma and I had finished off the first batch and I was cleaning up the kitchen.  Still, though, I forgot about them.

When I did finally remember them, I took them out of the oven and they looked beautiful!  Really, they were the perfect golden brown.  Unfortunately, though, they were hard as a rock... completely dried out.  Next time, I'll set a timer.  Maybe that will keep me from forgetting about them!

Also, since this attempt, I was listening to a cooking show where the chef was pan-frying chicken.  She said that after battering your chicken that you should let it rest for about 30 minutes.  Supposedly, this rest period allows the bread crumbs to absorb the wet part of the batter... in my case the egg and sweet potato puree... and helps it to stick better.  No one has ever told me that!

This is a tip that I will remember and definitely put to use!  Maybe my next batch of nuggets will not only taste good, but look great too!!!

Have you tried anything Deceptively Delicious lately?  If so, tell me about it!  I LOVE a new recipe!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Electrolux... The Saga Continues

Well, unfortunately, the Electrosux Electrolux saga continues. After all we have gone through with this stupid refrigerator, you would think that we could catch a break.  At this point, since purchasing the refrigerator on June 7, we have experienced the following:  three, yes THREE, refrigerators, six control panels, a couple of fans, several weeks that it didn't make ice, countless numbers of leaks, an all out flood,  and a round of other issues that I blogged about here.

Yesterday our third fridge was delivered... straight out of the box, even had all the plastic on it.  I was hopeful that our fridge issues would be resolved once and for all.  Not once did I even let it enter my mind that this could be another disaster.

So, late afternoon, our new fridge was delivered, installed and left to cool.  We went out for dinner and didn't think anything of it.  Honestly, I think Chuck and I both were doing a lot of wishful thinking!  Once we returned, everything seemed fine.  Chuck went to bed and I began my bedtime routine... check on Emma, turn out all the lights, check the doors, set the alarm, get a glass of water....

Our new fridge had a sticker below the water dispenser explaining that you needed to let it run for approximately three minutes to be sure all of the air was out of the line.  I was going about doing that and I noticed that it was slow and making a funny sound.  I just chalked it up to there being air in the line.  So, after running it for the recommended three minutes, I was about to go to bed.  For some reason, though, I walked back into the living room and entered the kitchen through the opposite end than the fridge is on.  I turned on the light and there it was... several inches of water.

With all that we have been through with a refrigerator, I was furious.  And, I knew Chuck would be even more irate, which he was.  I began cleaning up water while he got out of bed, and we set out to find out what was leaking.  He pulled the fridge out and determined that it wasn't a bad connection to the main line... that would have been too easy.  We kept looking and realized that there was water all over the back of the fridge.  I had a thought and asked him to watch as I pushed the dispenser.  It sprayed him pretty much all in the face, and all over the kitchen.  He found a hole gash in the line that runs up the back of the fridge to the dispenser.

It was at this point that I decided that I would not take anything less than getting my money back.  We made sure that the main water line was completely turned off and went to bed.

As soon as the store opened this morning I called to make my demand.  Surprisingly, they were rather compliant!  I was ready to throw a huge fit to get my money back; but I didn't have to.  Thank goodness.  I honestly think that they are as tired of dealing with me as I am dealing with the refrigerator.

Their guy should be here any minute now to take this piece of junk from my kitchen.  And, though I will be without a fridge for the next few days while I shop for another, I am excited.  I am so ready to have a fully functional kitchen!

I just hope that they will refund the money to us without trying to make us jump through hoops to get it.  They seemed to be willing to just trade us the money for the fridge, but who knows.

I just hope and pray that the saga ends tonight.

PERIOD.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Raw

Forgotten.

The last one picked for the team.

Insignificant.

Longing.

The one who didn't get the call, text, or even the email.

Distanced.

Excluded.

Fair weathered.

Unconditional love... lost.

Inconvenience.

Obligation.

Needed by no one.

The exception to the motto 'No one left behind.'

Purposeless. 

Broken.

Social soul trapped within a loner's body.

Forgotten.



Raw...




Saturday, August 7, 2010

The Hair Bow Game








                                     


                                           




Thursday, August 5, 2010

A night like that

You know those nights when you have reached your breaking point?  When you ask yourself, Is this really MY life?  We have all been there.  I suppose it is just the way life is, but that doesn't make it any more bearable.  

Well, I can say that I was so there yesterday.  I wasn't feeling well, but couldn't pinpoint what felt bad...  I almost fainted at one point and I don't really know why...  Emma woke up from her afternoon nap screaming and proceeded to scream for another 15-20 minutes for a still undetermined reason.  And then Chuck came home wanting to do something.  What?  I still am not sure, but he was obviously disappointed that I wasn't feeling the same enthusiasm for life that he was feeling.  

Being the sweet husband and Daddy that he is, he offered to take Emma to his parents' for a little while and let me just relax.  So, he took her to visit and came back to check on me.  Though he wanted really to do something, he could tell that I wasn't feeling up to it.  So, he sat on the couch with me and we just talked... No t.v., no Emma, no distractions.  It was wonderful!  And though it was just for an hour, it did me a world of good.  

When he went back to pick up Emma, he was going to swing by the grocery store and grab some fish to grill for supper.  After he left and before making it in the grocery store, he realized that he had forgotten his wallet. So, he brought Emma home and set back out to the grocery... I think he was afraid to try to tackle the grocery store with Emma and tow and intentionally forgot his wallet.  But shhh!  Don't tell him!

Anyway, back to the store he went.  While he was gone, I began working on my Basil Pesto sauce for the pasta that was to go with our fish.  Then, not surprisingly, I get a text... What did you need me to get?  I texted back Pasta.  A few minutes later, though, my phone rings.  It's Chuck.  I swear he can't go pick up the ingredients for what he is cooking without calling me about it!  Oh well... 

I answered and he went into this long spill about how great the fresh shrimp look and he wanted to cook those instead of fish.  I was totally okay with it, and after another forever on the phone discussing groceries...oh, yes, this is a regular occurrence if he goes to the store... we finally hang up.

Luckily, I am a great multi-tasker and had completed my pasta sauce.  Next, I open the pantry to get out the potatoes for our shrimp boil.  Somehow, though, I never actually got to them, but Emma did.  I looked up from filling pots of water to boil to see her rolling the potatoes across the kitchen floor and giggling, saying apple the whole time.  I couldn't help but laugh, and notice that my mood had begun to lighten.

Once Chuck got home from the store, he unloaded the groceries... shrimp, corn, garlic, fish, and beer...lots of beer...three or four different varieties of beer.  I just cracked up.  Who needs that much beer?  Anyway, he said he was just trying some different varieties of lower calorie beer.  Okay, whatever.

We both get busy working on supper and simultaneously keeping an eye on Emma.  All is well until it's time to put the apples in the pot to boil.  That led to a melt-down, that luckily was short lived.  She quickly found something else to entertain herself.  

Finally, everything was ready... music was playing, beer was cold, shrimp were spicy... and we sat down to eat.  Emma wouldn't touch the pasta, potatoes, or corn, but loved the spiders, aka shrimp.  So, we all sat down at the table, blessed the food and began to eat.  I'm not sure what song came on, but Emma began to chair dance, you know... dancing while still sitting in your chair.  Chuck and I laughed and joined in which only led to her dancing more.  We had finished up supper and I took Emma to the tub.  

Once clean and jammied, we went back into the kitchen to get a cup of milk.  She was drinking her milk when a Madonna song came on and Chuck busted out in song and dance.  This led to Emma busting out a dance of her own.  

She and Chuck danced while I scrambled to find my video camera... It is moments like this that I live for capturing!  I finally found it and videoed as they danced away to Madonna and then Michael Jackson.  It was fun times for all... I even got in on the action while videoing! 

We danced in the kitchen for the better part of an hour before putting Emma to bed.  It was a blast!  And, it was as I laid her in her bed, with Chuck by my side, that I realized that no matter how rotten I feel, or how terrible my day has been, it is all worth it for nights like this.  And, though I knew it before, I was reminded just exactly why I love my life as it is and wouldn't change a thing!

Here's a little piece of the action... Enjoy!


video


Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Ready to Run

Remember my post about my new True Balance shoes?  If not, you can click here to read it.

Well, again, while I haven't seen any real weight loss, I have noticed that I do feel better when I wear them.  I know that it is probably psychological, but whatever works... Right?

Since I have been wearing these shoes, I have been motivated to move more.  And, the more I move, the more I want to move.  This is the domino effect that I have been desperately trying to start sever since I gave birth to Emma.  It's funny how something like a new pair of shoes can get it going!

Anyway, in the past few weeks of wearing these shoes, I have finally committed to, invested in, etc. a jogging stroller.  And, with that, I invested in a watch that monitors heart rate.

I received my watch before the stroller, so I set it up and prepared for it to monitor my progress.  I thought that I would be able to tell it when to start.

No such luck.

Because my stroller hadn't come in, and I didn't want to use my regular stroller, heaven forbid I have to use a regular stroller!  I didn't do any type of activity the first week that I had my watch.  Not a big deal, right?

WRONG!  


One week after setting up my watch, I notice that it has little envelope looking things on the display.  Hmmm, I didn't know my watch had email! Cool.  But, wait, how does it know my email address?  That wan't a setting that I entered...

 It took a while, but I finally figured out how to read my message.  I scoured the manual, pressed the right combination of buttons and poof!  A message!

So, what did this message say?  It said something along the lines of  'Training week one incomplete, failure.'

What! Are you kidding me!  I wasn't even training yet!  I wanted to stomp on this stupid watch and see if it called me a failure then!  However, as ticked off as I was, I was also determined to never receive this message again.

I tried hard to delete this rude message, but obviously the creators of this watch knew what they were doing... You can't get rid of the message!  And, if I press the wrong button, it still flashes this rudeness in my face!  

And, if that encounter wasn't bad enough, I realized that I still had another message.  What now!?!? I wondered.  Again, I pressed the appropriate combination of buttons, and POOF!  Another message... This time it said, "Time to check your weight."  


Uh, I think not.  We've already determined that I did not do any form of physical activity, so I'm pretty sure that if anything, I gained weight.  So, I punched in the same weight that I was when I set up the watch and moved on.  


Finally, my stroller came in, and since, Emma and I have been burning up the pavement.  My watch has been flashing much nicer messages these day, like, 'Maximum performance and fitness improving.'  

Yay!  I am glad to know that I haven't disappointed my watch lately!

My next goal, after getting used to pushing a 32 pound stroller with a 28 pound toddler in it?

Running!

And, because Apple is super nifty, they have an app for the iPhone called C25K... Couch to 5K.  It tells you when to warm-up, run, walk, and cool down.  All in preparation for a 5K.  Whether or not I'll actually run a 5K remains to be seen.  I would like to, but even if I don't... Just to say that I can will be great.

Hopefully, all of this motivation continues and I will always be Ready to Run!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Deceptively Delicious, Recipe 4

For tonight's recipe, I tried the Peanut Butter and Jelly Muffins.  They are fairly simple to make and, as always, contain a hidden vegetable.  Tonight's vegetable was carrots!

After telling Chuck and Emma that I would make these over the past weekend, and never getting around to it, I finally made them tonight.  Honestly, I probably would have waited until tomorrow, or even another day, but Chuck asked about them.  He really has been a trooper through all of this!

After making homemade pizza for dinner, I decided to whip these little babies up.  But, before I go into detail about them, let me tell you about my pizza!

I subscribe to Everyday Food Magazine, which is a Martha Stewart publication.  They always have really great recipes that are easy!  One of my favorite recipes is their basic pizza dough.  It takes about 10 minutes to mix, and an hour to rise, then voila!  Delicious, and fresh pizza dough!

Anyway, once I got my dough ready, I prepared my sauce.  I cheated on this and used a jar of pizza sauce... But, to redeem myself, I got out some of the carrot puree and mixed in with the jarred sauce.  Remember when I said that tomato sauce hides just about anything!  It really does.

Next, I finished up the pizza with my family's favorite toppings...cheese, cheese, and more cheese... and popped it in the oven.  We enjoyed our pizza and then I got to work on the muffins.

Like I said, the recipe was fairly simple.  I whipped up the batter, topped it of with strawberry preserves and into the oven they went.  Once they were finished, I let them cool for a few minutes and served one to Chuck and Emma.  Chuck had a few bites and I asked what he thought.

 His reply, "It's good.  I taste the cauliflower."

"Really?" I asked.  "There isn't any cauliflower in it."

"Oh, well, what's in it?  I taste that."

I told him there were carrots in it and he said that it tasted like carrots.  I tried a bite and it tasted nothing like carrots.  It actually tasted like my hot peanut butter toast with jelly.

He put his empty plate on the counter and walked away.  I was pretty sure that I would have to consider this recipe a failure.  I put his plate away and continued cleaning the kitchen.  Chuck came back into the kitchen a few minutes later asking for his plate.  I was like, 'the empty one?'  He said yes, and said that he wanted another muffin.

It was at this moment that I realized that this recipe was, in fact, another success!  Yay!  He finished his second muffin and told me that the first one was good, but the second one is better.

I think the key to these is definitely letting them cool off before serving.  Granted, I thought they were good even while warm.  Also, I think that Chuck was really trying to identify the hidden vegetable.  I don't think an unsuspecting consumer would even think that there might be a hidden veggie in these!

One thing I will tell you is that when filling your muffin tin with the batter, use less than you normally would.  I filled the muffin tin like I would with any other batter, and it was too much.  You are supposed to top the uncooked batter with strawberry preserves ,which I did.  But, mine ran out over the edges when the muffins began rising.  They were NOT pretty!

Oh well!  They sure did taste good!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

NEWS Revealed

So, I bet you are wondering, "What is the news!?!?!"  

Remember when I told you I have news right here?

Here's a hint... 

Contrary to popular belief...






am.....................




NOT pregnant.


Maybe that will be my next bit of news!

Anyway, wait no more! 

 Click here to see!