Monday, April 30, 2012

Black Bean Croquettes And Salsa

Happy Monday! Don't These Black Bean Courgettes look yummy?
We all know how difficult it can be to search out and add in new recipes to your routine meals, but I truly think these croquettes would be an easy and yummy meat/meal alternative... give them a try with me! 

Friday, April 27, 2012


Friday Word Day

Hello there and happy Friday!
 What are your plans for the weekend? John and I will be grabbing some grub at one of our favorite taco joints tonight, and Sunday I am glasses shopping with my girl Jess. Both of my readers (which I love) are from SEE, and I think we are stopping there first for her too! 

The last thing on my list will be to plant my seeds for my urban garden! Lettuce, herbs and tomatoes are the majority of what I ordered, so cross you fingers that my shaded porch will let these beautiful plants grow!

P.S. As of now, I am relying on Martha, but If  you have any gardening tips or trick, I would love to hear them, please and thank you!

OK, are you ready for Friday Word yet? Ready or not, here it comes!

Luxuriate- Enjoying oneself in a luxurious way; take self indulgent delight; to grow profusely;thrive

*Synonyms: grow, abound, feast, increase, delight 

Thursday, April 26, 2012


Gnudi is a word I had never heard of before I stumbled upon this recipe. With 5 total ingredients (Parmesan and ricotta being two the them) you know I am going to have to give it a whirl! The recipe is written really well on the epicurious website, so please take a look if you want to cook along with me! 

Wednesday, April 25, 2012


Are you as crazy as I am about weather? I feel like I am constantly checking the weather channel  and love to see how frequently things can change... it usually keeps the same pace as my attention span and also helps with my urge to plan!

In the end, you can never really pinpoint exactly what the weather will bring, but preparing yourself the best you can usually stops these kinds of situations from happening: 

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Strawberry Pistachio Crumble

My mouth starts to salivate every time I look at this Strawberry Pistachio Crumble. It's definitively on my list   "O' Desserts" to try, and you should check it out too! 


It always amazes me how excited I can get when friends come to visit, and how fast it passes when they finally get here. I think I mentioned that some friends came to to visit, and I cannot believe they are already  back home! 

"A friend is one who knows you, and loves you just the same."Elbert Hubbard

Monday, April 23, 2012

AFP Grandparents

Have you seen these Grandparent videos yet?  Married for over 70 years,they have to be the cutest couple ever! I hope I am as silly when I reach their age. 

Another favorite is the wedding toast, and their wonderful marriage "tips" AFP Grandparents: The Wedding Toast

Friday, April 20, 2012

Friday Word Day

What a rainy Friday it is in Chicago! Ballou took three steps outside, peed, and turned right back inside! What are you going to be up to this weekend?

Maggie May and Annie Lu-who are coming in today for a weekend visit to the windy city, and they are getting their fair share of wind! Never the less,  I am super pumped to have my girls around, as they always seem to appear right  when I need them the most...

We are going to be relaxing with lots of sangria's and I hope you do the same!

Carouse- drink plentiful amounts of alcohol and enjoy oneself with others in a noisy, lively way.

*Synonyms: boisterous, gaiety, drinking, fun

Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Perfect Hard Boiled Egg

Do you make hard-boiled eggs at home?
 I love them, but have this weird thing with runny eggs. I tend to get nervous about not leaving the eggs in long enough when I hard-boiled them. From what I've gathered through conversations with friends, it seems like a common problem. Always ready to conquer a challenge, I decided to make a few last night (paying close attention to timing) and they cooked perfectly!

According to Martha Stewart, you:
  • fill a pot with cold water (at least an inch higher than your eggs) and bring it to a boil on medium heat with the eggs inside. 
  • Once the water starts to boil, you remove the pot from heat and cover for 12 minutes. 
  • Take eggs out of the water, and rinse them with cold water.
  • That's it!  Eggs are ready to eat immediately. 
I usually add salt or vinegar into the water because I think it makes the eggs easier to peel after, but you don't have to add anything if you don't have shelling issues. I peeled the last two for John and I this morning, and somehow he got both eggs- after I peeled them...hhmmm someones taking advantage of a generous heart!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Kai Pet Floats

Have you seen these pet pool floats before? When we go swimming at John's parents in the summer, Ballou spends all of her energy circling the pool, trying to find a way in... I don't want her swimming for long periods of time in chemicals (or ripping their pool lining), but if she was on a raft, I don't think she would cry as much when we are splashing away. Even their beautiful 100 lb Lab can join in on the fun! 

Cannot wait to get one for the summer! 

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

How do you relax?

Sometimes I forget how many differences people can have from one another. I don't know why, but it's strange to me that some people do not use reading, cooking, yoga and taking walks, as their tools for relaxation... Isn't that what everyone enjoys?

 The funny thing is, I never noticed my misconceptions until John pointed them out to me....point blank.
 In the midst of my attempt in convincing him on how relaxing with a good book can be, he started to ask me questions about why it's so important to have him relax in the same way...  I had no other answer besides wanting to share the joy of relaxation with a person I love... 

Then an epiphany happened:

My dreams of libraries and a walks by the lake, are equivalent to his dreams of a comfy couch in front of a flat screen with a hockey game on.
I cannot seem to make up my mind on if this is a good or bad thing... or if it even matters...

What are your thoughts on the matter? Do you believe relaxing in the same way is important? 

Monday, April 16, 2012

A Love Note to the Workaholic

Monday morning reading brought me to an interesting article. Entitled, A love note to the workaholic, Brene Brown brings to life an all too common problem in our society today. Brown's idea of life, centered around engagement, is thought provoking and defiantly worth pondering. Enjoy the article and let me know if you agree!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Lemon Ginger Bundt Cake

Ok, before the weekend comes, I had to share this Bundt Cake recipe! This is a must for the weekend...

 Lemon Ginger Bundt Cake By: Martha Stewart and Co.

Friday Word Day

You know those days when you wake up knowing it's going to be a good day? Well, I had that this morning, but it was a feeling about the entire when that happens! 
What will you be up to? John and I have a baptism to go to, and I really do not know the proper etiquette on what to give for religious you? You would think the catholic church would have covered that topic during one of my 23 years through catholic schooling (went to a catholic college just by chance!).
 Every person I have talked to has given me a different opinion on the matter, so let me know if have an answer for me! 
Besides that, it's hockey playoffs and I am ready for some good games! Here are some of the hockey stats if you missed the first few games...Go Black Hawks!

Auspicious- conductive to success; favorable giving or being a sign of future success.

*Synonyms: advantage, favorable, lucky, hopeful

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Slip Covers

I don't know if many people have feelings on slip covers or not, but John and I absolutely do...that is, I love them and he hates them. While both opinions are valid... I think there are more pluses to my liking them, than to his disliking them...but that's just me! A few pluses for slipcovers are:

  • they are a lot less expensive than buying new furniture
  •  you can instantly add color and texture to a room 
  • they just look comfortable. 

What are your thoughts? slipcovers are a go or a no?

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Potato Puffs

These Potato Puffs look so amazing! With feta and tarragon, there is so much to love!

(P.S. easy peasy organics is where I found this yummy recipe!)

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Packing One Bag

Do you over-pack when your travel? 
A friend and I were just talking about how easy it is to over-pack, no matter what the length of our trip is... I really do try to pack on the simple side, but usually let my thoughts of "what if's" get the best of me.
 After we spoke, I did a little research and found this great NPR article on how to pack everything into one bag. Such a great resource for over-packers like me!


"The very least you can do in your life is figure out what you hope for. And the most you can do is live inside that hope. Not admire it from a distance but live right in it, under it's roof." -Barbara Kingsolver 

Monday, April 9, 2012

Cabin Fever

What do you day dream about?

Mine are filled with cottages and cabins...

For as long as I can remember, my mother has been talking about buying land and building a cabin. Soon, it became my own personal dream to have one, and I cannot wait for the day when I am able to step foot into the real thing!
Do you have cabin fever too?

Friday, April 6, 2012

Friday Word Day

Good Friday is here, which means Easter is just around the corner. Whether you celebrate Easter or not, I am sure you can find the inherent beauty in spreading love, compassion and joy to the ones around you.

Easter has always been a great time to reflect on the beauty and blessings in life.... something we should be doing every single day.  Unfortunately,  it's all too easy to get stuck on hangups...whether they're based on money, image, location, age, perception, health or (fill in the blank), our problems can take over our minds and hearts. As a self proclaimed worrier, I know all to well the powers anxiety can hold... power only you can give...and take.  
If you do take time for reflection this weekend it may behoove you to spend some thought-time on my sister's favorite reminder...
... in the end, good or bad, this too shall pass...

I hope you have a wonderful weekend with whatever you may be doing.

Sentiment- A view of or attitude toward a situation or event; an opinion.

*Synonym: sense, emotion, feeling

Thursday, April 5, 2012

A New Take on Posters

When I was in college, I had posters all over my apartments. In fact, all of my friends decorated their apartments in a similar manner... Probably because they were an easy way to decorate empty white walls without straining our barely there bank accounts!

All but two of those rather large posters (which have now been matted and framed) were tossed after I left my college apartment, but I do sometimes miss the fun they bring to a room....and when I say sometimes, I am being generous with the word, because there were more problems with them than there were joys... I guess I still have a hard time swallowing the size of  those old posters...

I wish I found these Etsy "posters" years ago! They're such a fun and simple take on their larger (and more generic) counterparts... don't you think?

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Easter Eggs

When I was 3 or 4, my mother took my brother and I to a neighborhood Easter egg hunt! There was a local park close to the house, and every child set out, basket in hand, to find as many Easter eggs as they possibly could.
 Instead of searching for eggs, I decided to let my brother do the work...when he would put a new egg into his basket, I would take it out, slipping it quickly into mine...

My behavior was not so much in line with the message of Easter, but that memory always makes me smile when I think about it!

This weekend I really want to make colored eggs, and these cracked eggs look so awesome! They are known as Chinese tea eggs, and I cannot wait to see how mine turn out!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012


As a lot of you know, I have a deep love and respect for Mr. Einstein... For that reason, I have a quote of his sticky-noted to my desk, and it makes me smile every time I read it...

"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former." 
-Albert Einstein

Monday, April 2, 2012

Little Things

Isn't it amazing how much of an impact a little color can bring? Like I mentioned Friday, John and I gave his condo an intense scrub down, and I started thinking about what little changes could be made to add more color in... Even simple dish towels can add a small pop to a neutral kitchen.
What do you think about color in your home? Pop of color, loads of color, or none at all? 


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