Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Air and Mushrooms

My air conditioner supposedly was fixed today.  Hopefully it is still working when I get home from work today.  I think I may try to make stuffed mushrooms for dinner.  This is a new experiment for me.  I'll let you know how it turns out!

Also I got a $20 Groupon for The Painted Pig today for $10 so I am super pumped about going to use it!  I haven't been to this store before, but I have been to a similar place several times, and I can't wait!  These deal websites are so much fun for me!  My favorites are groupon and jasmere.  Do you know of any other sites that I should watch??

Monday, August 30, 2010

The rest of the weekend

The rest of this weekend was very busy as well!  On Saturday morning, I worked around the house while I waited on the air conditioner man to arrive.  He came and fixed the air conditioner around 1:00.  While I was getting ready for Ruby's 2nd birthday party, I noticed that it was getting pretty hot again, so I went and checked on the air conditioner, and the fan was not spinning.  So, I called the man back and he said he would come by and look at it again.  It turns out that he put in the wrong part and he didn't have the right one, so he had to order the part.  I don't know why these things always happen to me on the weekends!!  The part was supposed to come in today, but he called me this morning and said that it would be tomorrow between 10 and noon.  We will see if that happens.  :)  On to more happy things....

Ruby's party was super fun for all the kids!  There was a water slide and a bounce house, with Dora everywhere!  She sure got a lot of presents for a two year old!!
Sunday was very busy.  We had our church fish fry on Sunday night, with a silent auction.  If only I had more money, I would have come home with many prizes.  :)  I did really want this pumpkin, but Ashley stole it from me!
Oh well, I think I might try to make some kind of door decoration similar to this one.  So if any of you have any suggestions or ideas for making things out of this screen, please let me know!

I put a "gift certificate" for some cupcakes in the silent auction, and they did really well, so I was excited!  I always get nervous when I make stuff for other people.  Hopefully the winner will like them!  I haven't heard from her yet about what kind she wants.

I also made some brown sugar icebox cookies to bring to handbell practice tonight for Ashley's birthday.  They are not the best cookies that I have ever had, but they aren't awful.  I told Ashley that I had never made them before so they might be gross.... so at least I warned her!  :)  And I got caught up in a tv show and burned one of the batches, but the dog (Hershey) was super excited to eat half a dozen burned cookies.  haha.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

There goes the fun budget

So last night night we had a girls' craft night.  It was super fun and I made some super cute coasters.  Here's a picture of me and our super awesome hostess Liza.

We spent most of the night talking and eating, and eventually did some craftiness.  These are my coasters:

I am really proud of them!  I think they are so cute and they match my living room perfectly (well except for the pink and orange, but I like them anyway!).  Now that they are actually dry, they look even better.  I am going to make another set so that I have 8 coasters.

Now for the sad part of the story....
When I got home it was SOOOO hot in my house.  One of my roommates moved out yesterday, so I thought maybe the air conditioner was just having a hard time adjusting to having the doors open a lot.  I spent the night at my mom's house because I am not a fan of sweating while I sleep, and went to bed hoping that when I came back this morning the problem would have resolved itself.  (wishful thinking right??).  Unfortunately, it was still hot as you know where when I got here this morning.  I put in a call to my favorite heating and air company (ok the only one I have ever used) and they came today around 11:45.  I had to get a new fan motor.  I just had to have the air conditioner worked on back in June, but it was a different problem so I didn't have it covered by warranty.  Are you kidding me?  I have the worst luck.  I also had to scrounge up another trashcan since apparently the roommate who moved out decided that she need it, and fix the light in that closet which nobody bothered to tell me was broken.  And the stupid wireless internet got broken so I had to fix that as well.  It has been a productive day, I guess.  :)

So , I'm out about 300 something for the motor part plus labor, so there goes my fun budget.  :(

Thursday, August 26, 2010

The story of how I got every dish in the kitchen dirty.

Last night I decided to cook two things after work.  Normally I only cook 1 thing because I know I won't eat all of it by myself, but I know it is not healthy that way.  So last night I actually had time to cook, so I made mushroom bolognese and buttered sugar snaps & green peas.  It was not my favorite meal ever, but it wasn't bad.  I brought it for lunch today, so I'll let you know if I change my mind.  :)

Here's the recipe for the mushroom bolognese:

1lb rigatoni (or other pasta- I had a box of penne so that is what I used)
10 baby carrots
1 medium onion, quartered
1 1/2 tsp olive oil
5 oz sliced shiitake mushrooms
1 1/4 lb ground turkey
1/2 cup white wine (I substituted chicken broth because they don't sell just 1/2 cup of wine, and I wouldn't drink the rest)
1 medium yellow squash, quartered lengthwise and sliced
26oz marinara sauce

1.  Cook the pasta in a large pot of lightly salted boiling water as directed.
2. Meanwhile put carrots and onion in a food processor; pulse until finely chopped.
3.  Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet. Add carrots, onion and mushrooms; cover and cook over medium-high heat, stirring often, 4 minutes or until almost tender.
This is what it looked like at this stage.  And let me tell you, it smelled wonderful!!
4. Add turkey and cook, breaking up clumps, 3 minutes or until no longer pink.  Stir in wine and squash; boil 1 minute.

Before squash.

After squash.  Notice that I now have a different pan.  Apparently my "large" skillet was not large enough....
5. Stir in marinara sauce; bring to boil.  Reduce heat and simmer 2 minutes or until squash is tender.  Pour over drained pasta; toss to mix.

           With sauce.
With pasta.

This recipe even gave nutrition info per serving: 550 cal, 29g protein, 5 g fiber, 14 g fat.  It also says that it is about $1.60 per serving.  Not sure if I agree with that after going to the grocery store to get all of this stuff, but whatever.  :)

Now for the Buttered Sugar Snaps and Green Peas
1lb sugar snap peas
10oz frozen green peas
2 Tbsp butter
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper

1.  Bring a large skillet half full of lightly salted water to a boil.  Add snap peas and green peas.  Return to boil; boil 1 minute or until snap peasa are crisp-tender.  Drain; rinse with cold water and drain well.
2.  Melt butter in same skillet.  Add snap peas, green peas, salt and pepper.  Cook over medium-high heat, stirring, until hot.  Remove to serving bowl.

The final product.

Yay for dinner!

And this is what my kitchen looked like after all of this:

All of this was from cooking just these two things.  I think next time I need to plan a little better....

Monday, August 23, 2010

Walking in Memphis

This past weekend was a busy one!  It was Bid Day at the University of Arkansas, and I really wanted to go up to meet my new sisters at Alpha Delta Pi, but it just didn't work out.  I ended up going to Memphis with Karen, Ashley, and Shannon.  We had a great time.  We all met up to leave from Karen's house, and on the way there a piece of my car that has been loose recently decided to blow off when I was driving down the interstate.  Luckily I don't think it is an important part.  :)  My brother said the only thing that might happen is that it might leak around the door, but my car leaks anyway, so who cares?  haha.

Once we got to Memphis, we went to lunch at Huey's.  We shared these fried pickles:
Don't worry, all that grease is good for you.  :)

I had a plain old turkey sandwich for lunch, but it was good!

We did a little shopping, and then went back to the hotel.  Nothing eventful happened at this time.  Our room was not quite ready, so we went and soaked up some sun at the pool.  I got my hair a little wet and of course it was curly, so Ashley decided to make my hair curly for our evening out.  It was very strange for me to see my hair curly.  One time when I was washing my hands in the bathroom, I caught a glimpse of myself out of the corner of my eye, and I thought "wow something is wrong with my hair."  hahaha.

After swimming, we went back to the room and got ready for dinner.  We went to Rendezvous and this is what I ate:

Here we are at the restaurant (mainly because I can't have only pictures of food in this post. haha.):

After dinner, we went down to Beale Street.  We spent most of our time at BB King's with the old folks. :)  We also went to Coyote Ugly, and I must say that is not really my style..... but there were lots of boys there!
We didn't stay out too late since we are old farts.  We got up Sunday morning and went to breakfast at Cockadoo's .  Three of us got Cockawatts.  The waitress told us it tasted like a smore, but let me tell you, I love smores, and this did not taste like a smore. : )

I had blueberry pancakes (which you will not see because I ate every. last. bite.) and sweet potato hashbrowns, which were not my favorite.

This picture was taken after I was done... so you can tell how much I liked them.

And here I am in front of the restaurant:

Except that you have to turn your head sideways to look at it.  Apparently I am stupid because I can't figure out how to rotate the pictures.  So if one of you lovely blog readers would educate me on proper blog picture insertion methods that would be wonderful.   (so that next time I don't look so dumb!)

We had a good time, and then when we got back, I went to help prepare/serve food at a local soup kitchen.  Our church is one of several that take turns.  We had sloppy joes, salad, beans, fruit, potatoes, and cake.  I think everyone liked it.  I had a good time and I will try to do this next time that our church is on the schedule.

Friday, August 20, 2010


Last night I had an unexpected trip to Cajun's Wharf for Louisa's boyfriend's birthday.  I already had eaten dinner but I went and had a salad.  We had a good time!
Cherry, Me, and Louisa

It took a while for us to get a good picture, but I put this one up because it is the best of me and Cherry, and I figure Louisa won't read my blog anyway.  :)

Today I went to lunch at Sai gon Cuisine with my work people, and when I got back from lunch there was a surprise in my school account!  I got an A in Corporate Strategy!  Pretty much I am a genius!

And one last picture to show you how excited I was to turn in my three volume paper!

Yes it is an awful picture... but after a 3 hour meeting and then 2 hours of binding this stupid thing, I was so glad to be done!!!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Is there really Coke in that?

Yes my friends, I made a coca-cola cake the other day.  And yes it really has coke in it.  I can not even count how many people have asked me that question upon hearing about my delicious cake.  :)  But beware, I am pretty sure that this cake is the most awful for you ever but it tastes oh so good!

So here's the recipe if you want to try it for yourself:

The Cake:
1 cup coca-cola
1/2 cup oil
1 stick butter or margarine
3 tbsp cocoa
2 cups sugar
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla

In a saucepan, bring coca cola, oil, butter, and cocoa to boil.   Mix sugar, flour and salt, and pour mixture into boiling liquid.  Beat well.  Add eggs, buttermilk, baking soda, and vanilla.  Pour into a greased cake pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

The frosting:
1 stick butter
3 tbsp cocoa
6 tbsp cream or milk
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup pecans
1 pound confectioners sugar

In saucepan, combine butter, cocoa, and milk.  Heat until the butter melts.  Beat in remaining ingredients and spread on hot cake. 

Cool before cutting.  (Apparently this is very important.  I did not wait to cut it, and it was a crumbly mess.  As tempting as it is, wait a little while before cutting yourself a piece!)

The finished product:

I will leave you with pictures of my ricotta-broccoli canneloni dinner.  I'm not going to give you the recipe simply because it was not that good, but I will show you the steps I took.  It was fun to make, even if it was not super delicious.

Today is the first day of classes for the Fall 2010 semester.  This should be my last semester!  Wish me luck!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Weekend Fun

This weekend was a good mix of fun and doing nothing!

Friday I went to eat at Krazy Mike's Shrimp and Wings.

I had the chicken strips, which were pretty good.  I also went to JCPenney, where I scored a new shirt and some onesies for a baby present.  I went to Walgreens, and I got some pretty exciting stuff : toilet paper and deoderant.  Obviously I am not loving the make your own deoderant thing.  I also went to Michaels, where I got some scrapbook paper.  We are going to have a girls' craft night soon with the girls in my Sunday School class and we are going to make coasters.  I got 4 different patterns that are really cute!  I am excited to try my hand at something crafty.  :)

Saturday, Larissa and I went to the "rocketship park" and played for about an hour before we decided it was too hot and we should go home to play in the water hose... (my sneaky idea for making watering the grass and bushes fun!)  This is the awesome rocketship:

It would have been fun to have some other friends there to play as well, but they all were smart enough not to get out in this heat.  I think we are going to plan another time for everyone to get together with the kids and play here once it cools down some.  They also have an old traincar to play on.

It was not as fun as we thought though, since you can't go inside the car. There were lots of other things at this park.  Apparently I played there a lot when I was little, but I don't remember this.

As I already said, after about an hour, we decided that we couldn't take it anymore, and we went to my house to play in the water hose/water the grass and bushes.  The bushes aren't looking really great.  This heat has really been getting to them.  At least I looked at the weather forecast for the next 10 days and it did not show any 100's!  The highest was 98 so that is a good break!  I think the biggest bush is most definitely dead, but I am hoping that it will come back.  My mom had one of those bushes that she cut off at the ground because she thought it was dead, and it came back, so I am hoping that will happen with mine.

We went to eat at Cheeburger Cheeburger.  I had a gift certificate that I bought off of one of my new favorite websites: Groupon!

I had the turkey burger with guacamole, tomato and lettuce, and an oreo mint shake that was just heavenly.  I used to not like Cheeburger Cheeburger, but I think I have changed my mind.  :)  We also went to Old Navy because I had a coupon, but I have not been very happy recently with our Old Navy store.  It has gotten smaller and I think there are less options now.  I was going after this cute dress I saw online, but of course they didn't have it.  I guess I'll just have to order online.

Saturday night, I went to eat at Johnny Carino's (I just realized that I ate out every meal except one this weekend... oh well it was good.) with some friends and then went to see Eat Pray Love with Julia Roberts.  This movie was not as good as I expected.  I loved the book, but the movie was just so-so.  It was not the best movie I've seen lately, but not the worst one either.

Sunday I went to church and then ate a quick lunch at home (my one meal at home this weekend) and then Cherry and I were going to see our friend's new kitten.  During all of our planning, we forgot to check with our friend and see if she was going to be home.... so when we called to say we were on our way, she didn't answer.  We decided to go to the mall (where she works), and guess what!  Our friend happened to be working.  Very poor planning on our parts.  However, Cherry and I did do some damage at the mall.  I got a skirt from PINK at Victoria's Secret, and 2 shirts from Banana Republic.  Then I had a meeting at church and when I got out I met my mom, brother, and grandmother at Dixie Cafe for dinner.

It was a good weekend!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Make Your Own Deoderant

As promised, here is the story about my experience making my own deoderant.  Why would I want to make my own deoderant?  While my mom accused me of wanting to be like the Duggars, who make their own laundry detergent as a cost saving measure, this was not my motive.  It says that the aluminum found in some deoderants is bad for you, and I thought it might be fun to make my own.  However it really wasn't as much fun as it sounds.... haha.

The ingredients:

I got everything from Whole Foods, except for the baking soda, which obviously came from Kroger.

You need:
1/4 cup Arrowroot powder
1/4 cup baking soda
5-6 pinches (whatever that means.... ) of ground up sea salt
4 tablespoons of coconut oil
10 drops of essential oil ( I chose rosemary but I don't think I like it...)

Mix the dry ingredients first and then mix in the coconut and essential oil. 

Here's what it looked like while being mixed:

And in the container:

Mine was very runny, (almost like icing for cinnamon rolls or something) but it also says that you can refridgerate it for a more solid feel. I tried that and it was too hard so I decided to use it room temperature. I tried it out this morning and I don't think that I like it. Maybe I will try another batch, but I don't really like putting on deoderant with my fingers. :)

So if I don't make any more deoderant, do you have any idea what I can use arrowroot powder or coconut oil for?  I have a lot of both and don't know what to do with it.

This is what the arrowroot bag says, in case that will give you any ideas!!
Should you decide that you want to try to make your own deoderant, I might even give you some of my arrowroot powder and coconut oil!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Why can't every day be a vacation day?

I took Tuesday off to relax after the horrible torture that is known as Corporate Strategy.   (And P.S. our grades were supposed to be posted today, and instead our teacher decided not to turn in our grades on time.  Are you kidding me?  I know he doesn't like me, so I think he is trying to give me a heart attack). I slept 11 hours on Monday night, and didn't rush around to do anything.

I ate lunch at Moe's with my mom and brother.  Normally this is a wonderful experience.  However, the one time we are in somewhat of a hurry, the tortilla warmer breaks and we have to wait forever.  It was still good, and of course I still ate way too much.

I went and had a massage to relax my tense muscles from typing so much over the past 5 weeks.  It wasn't the best massage I've ever had, but it sure was better than nothing!  While I was gone, my brother went over to our cousin's house and dug up some bushes that she didn't want anymore, and I came home to this:

Yay for bushes!  I have been wanting to put some bushes here since I moved in, but I haven't been able to pick any out.  These were FREE, so my decision was made!!!  I realize that they are half dead, but hopefully I can do a better job of keeping these alive than my sod.  It probably wasn't the best time of year to do these things to my front yard, but it looks much better!

I also tackled a large amount of my favorite household chore:


Is it weird that I like to do laundry?  If I had to choose a chore to do, this would definitely be it.  Now if I could only develop a love for other chores....

I also did one new thing yesterday- I made some deoderant.  I ran across a recipe on someone's blog a while back (sorry, I can't remember who) and I thought that it might be fun to make my own.  The consistency is a little runny, and I haven't tried it out yet, but I think that will have to be it's own blog post.  Maybe tomorrow.

Monday, August 9, 2010

First Post!

Today is the last day of corporate strategy!  Woo-hoo!  More to come later after we record our group presentation and I can officially be done for the semester!