1.29.2018

Menu Planning 1/29 - 2/2

Monday: Pasta Shell Salad from Disney Princess Cookbook (I let the Monkey pick out dinner)

Tuesday: Gnocchi + Marinara

Wednesday: Carrot - Lentil Soup + Samosas (Soup subject to change, I may need to use up other ingredients or have leftovers. Not quite sure yet)

Thursday: Sesame Chicken Noodles from Chrissy Teigen's Cravings

Friday: Pork Chili

1.24.2018

Book Review: What Alice Forgot by Lianne Moriarty




Liane Moriarty is the same author who wrote Big Little Lies. That was a fantastic book, there's a tv series as well (I've only made it through the first few episodes, which it's great so far!). Because of Big Little Lies I had seriously high expectations but after the first half of the book, I realized that I really hated What Alice Forgot. It was super cliched, frivolous, and totally predictable. It left me rolling me eyes. I'm not sure I can even talk about the story because even that is a bit too ridiculous.

Lady bumps her head. Forgets her current life and thinks it's a decade earlier. EYE ROLL.

I would not recommend unless it's the only "good" book left in the Free Little Library down at the park.

So that's my honest feedback. Should I laugh? Should I cry? Nope, I'm just banging my head against the wall because I wasted time reading this book when I could have been reading something different!

1.23.2018

Meal Plan 1/22 - 1/26

Monday: Portuguese White Bean & Kale Soup with Bread

Tuesday: Leftover soup

Wednesday: West African Peanut Soup with salad and Lemon Tahini Dressing

Thursday: Dino Chicken Nuggets and Fries/Tots and frozen veggies

Friday: Chicken Pot Pie

Notes on this week's menu -

The Portuguese White Bean & Kale soup is from the Moosewood Cookbook and it was super bland. As in the only seasonings in it were dried Thyme, salt, and pepper - I even added a teaspoon of Herbes de Provence and that still didn't help! The leftovers were supposed to be today but I've vetoed that. The Monkey says she was McDonald's but Bimmer Man vetoed that (I could go for chicken nuggets!), which means it's either going to be MyBurger or 5 Guys. YAY!!!

This also means that I'm a bit leery of the Peanut Soup recipe - others that I've looked at have more spice to them which means this one might end up bland too. I'll make it according to the recipe and we'll see!

Happy Tuesday!

1.20.2018

Obsessed: Cookbooks

Oh man. I LOVE FOOD. I love to cook food. I love to eat food. I love to smell food. I just love food. Lately I've been really good at menu planning and one reason why I've really stuck with it is that I've reserved cookbooks every single week at the library. I try to make at least one recipe out of each cookbook. That has seriously forced me to realize that not all cookbooks are created equal, nor are all cookbooks that great. Not all of them are for me and I've come to realize that I have limitations to what I'm willing to make.

Example - I was set on getting out Nigella Lawson's cookbooks and I really thought I would enjoy them. But then I opened one up and looked at her ingredients and shook my head. NOPE. None of these recipes would ever be made in my kitchen. Which is really too bad because years ago I used to enjoy her show.


This week I went overboard on Moosewood Cookbooks from the Moosewood Restaurant in Ithaca, NY. I must have reserved 5 or 6 of them and...four of them were ready for me at the library at the same time. Which is a lot. And I forgot to put them on hold so they would be ready one at a time. Oh, well. I guess I'll have to speed read through them!

The first one I'm going to tackle is Simple Suppers. I'll choose a few to make next week and then by that time I'll have to renew all the others. I'll update and review later this month.

1.17.2018

OMG. 4:30 is TOO Early

I got up at 4:30 this morning and went to the gym.

People were lined up outside at 4:45. They scan our cards so of course there's a line. There were 22 cars in the lot already. And the cars just kept coming. Holy crap.

I seriously thought that maybe I had beat the New Year's Resolution-ers to the gym for a workout and boy, was I wrong!

Truth be told, I don't have time to go during the day. By the time The Monkey is dropped off at school and we're home it's almost 10 and I still need to do dishes, laundry, clean SOMETHING in this house (or garden or shovel or something is in desperate NEED of attention like bills, etc...). Then it's 11 and Chewie is screaming for lunch. After lunch is nap. During nap is time for laundry, more dishes, mopping, wiping up crumbs from the floor, taking out the garbage, getting everything ready for dinner, and basically not losing my mind.

So no, I don't have time for the gym. Possibly on Thursdays but in general Tuesdays and Thursdays are reserved for Tot Time so I can see adults and practice speaking to adults. I'm a bit out of practice in that adult socialization department. And time is fleeting.

Pretty sure Bimmer Man would be like "but you have time!" to which I would reply "well, you don't mop the floors or make it look pretty around here or disinfect the bathroom, amiright?!?"

There's just no time during the day. It just doesn't happen when I need to work around nap time.

I was reading an article awhile ago about how if moms want to do anything for themselves they either need to stay up late or get up early but either one they choose is to sacrifice their sleep for their own needs. Isn't that terrible?

But I've fallen prey to it and will do this until Chewie is in Kindergarten and then I can actually get shit done during day. It is what it is...

Until then coffee is my best friend.

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1.16.2018

Menu Planning 1/14 - 1/19

Sunday Football Day - Vegan Enchiladas with a spicy Basil-Cilantro Chimichurri + Bimmer Man's Taco Dip

Monday - Mediterranean Chicken Stew with Cous Cous

Tuesday - Pot Stickers + Fried Rice + Steamed Frozen Veggie Packet

Wednesday - Italian Cous Cous Casserole from Thug Kitchen Party Grub

Thursday - Roasted Gnocchi and Brussel Sprouts with Lemon Viniagrette

Friday - Family Fun Night with Pizza

Obsessed: Candles

For awhile now I've been burning candles. I've become a little obsessed. I mean. Sort of.

Last spring I bought a shit load of candles from my nephew's fiance from Partylite but I bought those for party gifts and hostess gifts and only a few for myself. Then I burned a votive and I was like OH SHIT I FORGOT HOW MUCH I LIKE THE SMELL OF CANDLES. But I also use an essential oil diffuser so I guess I'm a little obsessed with smells.

Not to mention the fact that my house was built in 1949 so I don't actually want it to smell like 1949. Because there's totally times where it smells like 1949.

I think pillar candles are super expensive and I like to switch up scents every other day or so. I can't really do that with jar candles and what the heck do you do with the jar when you're done? I don't know what to do with it besides recycle it but you have to get the wax out first (leave about 1/4 inch of wax on the bottom, then put it in the freezer. The wax will seize up and pop right out!).

I'm a big fan of tealights and votive candles. I put two on my stove and let them burn while I'm home. I feel like that's the safest place for them because I'm terrified of having a house fire. I know, I know, there's people that leave their candles burning for hours in all random areas of their homes but I can't do that!

I logged into Partylite only to find my nephew's girlfriend is not my consultant anymore which means she doesn't sell them. Boo. But here's a link to the votive candles if you're curious about the smells. Normally I don't buy into the MLM stuff but the Partylite scents are pretty great! Not too overwhelming, not too underwhelming.

Yesterday I bought a few Yankee Candles - I think the sage mixes are my favorite scents but I'll have to burn the rest too. On Yankee's website there's currently a sale running on votives - $1 each instead of $1.99.

And then of course at some point I'll have to stop at Bath & Body Works to cash in on their sales that seem to be ALWAYS happening. However, I don't think they sell the smaller candles. I'll have to check it out.

Until next time friends, Happy Tuesday!

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1.02.2018

UGH. I almost made it!

40 books last year! 40 books! And I made it to 39. I'm so freaking irritated with myself. Had we stayed at home I could have read for an hour and finished Big Little Lies but that didn't happen. Oh, well!

Off to the next challenge. I'm going for 45 books for 2018.

On my nightstand right now:

Elmet by Fiona Mozley
The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware

Any good suggestions for this next year??

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