Sunday, December 26, 2010


Goals for the New Year:

1. STAY on budget. I have no problem, although much shame, in admitting November and December were terrible for our budget. (think horrible terrible no good awful and despicable)

2. Blog more. November and December were also terrible for blogging, probably to do with the eating out which also damaged our budget.

3. Associate eating out with the devil! Since they are obviously responsible for ruining my good intentions regarding the first two goals.

4. Get out of debt minus one student loan (and maybe even that one too!). This isn't a huge number so I think it's completely reasonable to think we can do it this year. as long as goals 1, 2, and 3 work out.

5. Run my 1/2 marathon in January in Key West.

6. Eat at Bern's for Valentine's Day (totally using gift cards!)

7. We're moving in April and I'd love to find a home for rent with a fenced in back yard for Eliza.

8. Go to Wyoming/South Dakota in July.

9. Have a home-made gift Birthday season in August. Chris' home-made sock monkey from last valentine's is my favorite.

10. I'd like to begin a community group with Chris and other couples where we can talk about God, the Bible, life, love, and anything else. I'd like to stay in this group for 12 months, committed to the other couples.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Magazine Recipes

Do you read food magazines? I do. I'd like new ones to subscribe to for the next year though, please give me your suggestions!
I'm keeping real simple, because it makes me so happy.
I'm dropping bon appetit and the food network. Not because I don't like them, but I need some variety in my life. Although, bon appetit often has recipes that look good, but not my style.
I'm thinking about picking up cooking light and maybe martha stewart living or vegetarian. Am I missing an amazing magazine that's out there?

I'm enamored of these two recipes from Real Simple for next week. They are from the January 2011 issue so the recipes aren't online yet, but I'll link them as soon as they go live on their website.

Roasted Pork Chops and Butternut Squash with Kale.
I like this one because it's a protein, a wheat free starch/carbohydrate, and a dark green vegetable. Can't get a much better combination than that! The ingredients feel cozy too, I can see the big bunch of kale in my cart already.

Flaky Mushroom and Gruyere Tarts.
This is their vegetarian option, which I love. Although there is no shortage of protein with that cheese! (16 grams of protein in this recipe) Bonus, I'm taking any excuse to eat flaky pastry crust and call it dinner. I'll go for a small portion and probably pair it with a big salad.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Pasta with Goat Cheese

It's official, Real Simple recipes are my favorite. Here's the link.
and I have found yet another pasta dish that doesn't make me feel like I should be drinking red wine and brooding over a lost love.

This dish was DELICIOUS. It was bright, savory, flavorful, full of textures, comforting and for Chris, all in one bowl.

I used Heathy Harvest Linguini which is why the pasta looks a little darker. I like wheat pasta and in this dish I would totally recommend it. It's a little earthy tasting which goes so well with the creamy goat cheese and zucchini. The lemon zest is a must, please don't skip it in the recipe because it's tiny and doesn't even show up on my picture. It changes everything.

I did change the recipe a tiny bit because I drained all the water before remembering to save a bit for the pasta, so I used vegetable stock. It turned out good!

Let me know if you try it and how it turned out for you!
Happy Eating.

Monday, December 6, 2010

One Year, going on Two

Now that Chris and I have been married for one year we are celebrating our second holiday season together. There was something magical about the first season but I think I like the second just as much so far. In celebration of our life together I made these collages on
Cheers to many years together!
What year was your favorite with your spouse?

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Meal Planning

December was made for eating out. It's getting cold enough that you sleep late in the mornings to keep the covers on a little longer, so you don't pack any food. It's so bright and cherry outside at night that you want to go out and be apart of it. It's a terrible combination. I'm going light on the groceries this month to try and compensate for my splurge in the eating out department.

Meal Planning:

Leftovers from Columbia. Proof that we're eating out too much!
Pasta with Goat Cheese and Zucchini, from Real Simple.

Leftover Potato Soup
Pork Chops with Broccoli

Balsamic Chicken with Spinach and Quinoa, similar to this one from Food Network.

Kashi Frozen Pizza

Eating out! - I'm being realistic.

Happy Planning!

Thursday, December 2, 2010


My family is not made of gifted bakers.
It's a tough thing to admit but it's absolutely true.

Chris and I were day-dreaming the other day about our lives and all the things that could happen. Cooking and food are a huge part of our future dreams. I decided that I should at least attempt to bake something and see how it turned out, just incase we want to open a bakery someday.

I made Almond Blackberry Sandwich Cookies! You can check out the recipe here at Bon Appetit. They used raspberry jam but I used blackberry.


Blend sugar, almond paste, and cinnamon with egg whites in a food processor. Put the dough in a plastic bag, instead of a pastry bag. Whoever invented this is genius. It's so much less mess!
Pile sliced almonds on a parchment sheet and squeeze little dough thingies on top. Roll or somehow get almonds all all sides of the dough-y cookies.
Then transfer the cookies to a sheet.
and bake!
Then heat the jam and spread between the cookies and sandwich together. Let cool and dust with powdered sugar. If you're celebrating the first night of Hanukkah like I was, then place on your favorite platter with jewish stars on it and take to your Bible study. (hum...)
The cookies are sweet and chewy and I think mine turned out delicious! Maybe there is a baker in me yet!

Happy Eating (and baking)!