Archive for May, 2012

This and That

First, I’d like to show off my new baby, “Grace” (she came this way…I would have chosen a stripper spunky name like “Lola” or “Roxie”)! She is my Mother’s Day/birthday {ahem, June 2, ahem} present.

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Ain’t she a beaut!

And my first project, basically to test her out:

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Don’t judge my messy basement…

I had to try out the new machine on something I didn’t mind messing up or looking sloppy…so ^there^ it is. I wasn’t about to “play” on a paying customer’s order.

I’ve been slacking slightly in the running/eating healthy department. I’m actually SUCKING at it lately. I only had two workouts last week and I’ve been eating like a cow…if cows ate junk food out of bags and boxes 😦 I love having a large pantry but I need to refrain from filling it up and work on filling up that beautiful, stainless steel, double door refrigerator that I always dreamed about but never thought I’d get… I have all the tools, I just need a kick in the ass. I got the workout kick late last week in the form of a Pinterest quote:

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HELLS to the freaking YES, my friend! You should see me before and after a workout…it is not cute. Well, the before is…tight top, shorts at the perfect place on my hips, hair pulled tight and smooth. After? If I’m still wearing the top, it’s all stretched out and soaked, the shorts are halfway to my boobs, giving me a wedgie from hell and my hair looks like I sat in a steamy bathroom for an hour.

Speaking of before and after photos…I finally took some after shots yesterday and I was shocked at how flabby I was earlier this year. I still have a ways to go, but it was nice to see the hard work pay off a bit! Maybe I’ll get brave and post them in the next week or so…

And a little food porn…

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I’m a sucker for crescent rolls!

That is ribeye, sirloin, New York strip and filet mignon steaks. We kind of had a steak buffet the other night. Yeah, it was even more awesome than you’re imaging right now. Smashed red potatoes, balsamic green beans and mushrooms…amazingness!

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Real Girls Eat Meat

I mean no offense to vegetarians/vegans…I just love steak. And pork chops. And chicken. And bacon. And filet mignon. I could go on for days.

This is my dinner I’m about to devour. I’d be uber jelly if I were you.

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Green beans, mushrooms and balsamic…oh my!

Staying on trend with my last post, I’d like to gush about two recipes that made me and the hubs very happy last night! (I realize that could be taken in a dirty way…I choose to leave it.)

First, the meatloaf. I used to hate meatloaf. The word is as unappealing as the dry, bland hunk of meat that most people associate it with. Just my luck, I marry a man with a love affair with the stuff. I started with a Worcestershire (I had to google to spell it correctly…you’re welcome!) sauce version that was pretty good. Then I found this Sweet and Sour recipe. Even my I-don’t-like-anything-I-hafta-chew baby likes it! I came across this recipe a few years ago and it is a crowd pleaser. Even if you don’t like meatloaf, make it ONCE. If you really don’t like it, please come back and tell me about it! I’d be curious to see what a hater has to say 😉

Second recipe was found on none other than…Pinterest! I tried it two weeks ago and it’s now a weekly (or more) staple. You’re seriously going to thank me for this. Here is my picture:

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The original, Kalyn’s Kitchen, has better photos and you can find the recipe there. Enjoy!

P.S. Martha, this would be a nice side to a meat dish at your restaurant! Nobody will know that the “secret” ingredient is balsamic vinegar!

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Fajita Experiment

I like to call myself a good cook.

In reality, I’m a good direction-follower. I can follow a recipe like it’s my JOB! Adventurous to me, is substituting skim milk for whole milk.

So imagine my surprise when I ROCKED my own socks off with beef fajitas tonight!

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We have half a beef in the deep freezer and I had gotten stew meat out about a week ago. It’s been over 70 degrees for the last two weeks…I’m not making stew. This morning, I decided to step outside my comfort zone and I put a package (1 lb) of stew meat in the crockpot with some spices…because I’m lazy I like to plan ahead. At Aldi (woot woot!), I got a “variety” package of bell peppers, a bag of tomatoes on the vine, an onion and tortilla shells. I think it was a total of about $3. Shredded lettuce from Walmart (my Aldi doesn’t have shredded…boo).

Here’s the “recipe” (thatdeserves an LOL):
1 lb stew meat, frozen or thawed
1 yellow bell pepper, cleaned and sliced
1 green pepper, cleaned and sliced
1 red pepper, cleaned and sliced
1 yellow onion, peeled and coarsely chopped
1-3 tomatoes
1 tsp Cumin
1 tsp Onion powder
1 tsp Garlic powder
Salt and pepper

Put meat in crockpot (I used a small one) and add 8-12oz of water. Mix Cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, s&p and sprinkle over meat. Set crock on low, cover and leave for 6 hours. In the last 30-45 minutes, sauté onion and peppers in a large skillet, sprinkling some more spices on top, until brown but still tender (not soft). Add tomato, beef and a few spoons full of water/juice from crockpot. Let simmer 10 minute or so.

This isn’t an exact science (obviously, I’ve only done it once!) but this is the general idea. If you try it, let me know how it goes and what changes you made! The hubs walked in and gushed about how the house smelled just like our local Mexican restaurant. It’s after 9pm and the house STILL smells like Mexican food! Good thing we love Mexican food 😉

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Award…what what!

Here’s the deal:  There’s this thing called the Liebster Award…

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AND I GOT ONE!!!  NIENER NIENER NEINER!!!

This award is given to bloggers who inspire you and have less than 200 followers.  Basically, it’s your best-kept secret… or dirty little secret. 😉  And there are rules:

  1. Link back to the person who gave it to you and thank them.
  2. Post the award to your blog.
  3. Give the award to 5 bloggers with less than 200 followers that you appreciate and value (It’s a great way to get to word out there about other blogs!!)
  4. Leave a comment on the 5 blogs to let them know that they have received this award.

I was given this award by Martha at Whatup Chickenbutt?.  Her blog is about fitness and basically, being an all-around bad bitch.  She owns a bar/restaurant and works her butt off (pun intended) at the gym.  And she isn’t a cardio-until-your-legs-fall-off kind of girl.  She hits the weights like a champ.  Her attitude is right up my alley and she cusses like a sailor.  We would be besties in real life, I’m sure.

Since I’m horrible about blogging, I’m not going to do 5 (do I even follow 5 blogs?  SAD, I tell you!).  And is it bad to cross blog hosts?  I do follow a lot of Blogspot blogs…  Well hell, I’ll do 5 but it will include some from Blogspot.  Deal with it.

And my computer is about to die.  To be continued…

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Ok, I’m back 🙂  And these are in no order.

My first nomination goes to the blog life.intentionally.  I’ve known this girls since we were about 4 years old in preschool.  We had ups and downs throughout our childhood/jr. high years but when it comes down to it, she is a motivated, devoted, sweet and passionate person who tells it like it is.  She loves God, firemen, food (we are from the same mold!) and her family.  She’d give you the shirt off her back in a heartbeat.  And she isn’t afraid to take life by the horns.  She’s going to be one of those “cool moms” with fascinating stories to tell of places she traveled before her 30th birthday!

Second nomination goes to Megan at Pearl Music.  We “met” online a couple years ago through a support group for women who carried to term their babies with a fatal prenatal diagnosis.  Since she lived in the same town as my brother, I got to meet her in person about a year and a half ago!  We also met up this past fall after we each had our rainbow babies.  It was a short meetup (our babies were sick…boo) but was so happy to see her again and meet her beautiful little bundle!  Her blog is about her relationship with God, her journey in CTT, decorating her beautiful home (their “haven”…so cute!), crafty adventures and plain old life.

Third nomination goes to Meghan at Shining Through The Sorrow.  This woman changed.my.life.  When we got Tyler’s diagnosis of Bilateral Renal Agenesis (Potter’s Syndrome), I had nowhere to turn.  I had never heard of it, the doctor told me that my baby was going to die, gave me information to abortion clinics…  I was reeling, to say the least.  Then I found Meg’s blog, documenting her pregnancy and birth of her sweet Potter’s baby, Gabe.  He was born just 3 days before we received the same devastating diagnosis.  Reading his birth story was one of the most beautiful accounts of a mother’s love that I’ve ever read.  Amazing.  Beautiful.  Inspiring.  Uplifting.  She started Shining Through The Sorrow recently, but there is a tab that takes you back to Gabe’s website and you can read all about that sweet little guy there!

Fourth nomination goes to Mandy at From Under The Weeping Willow.  Her story begins much like mine and Meghan’s but takes an unexpected, unlikely twist when she had her SECOND Potter’s baby (our doctors assured us all that it’s nearly impossible…).  There isn’t a whole lot that I can say about her, honestly.  She is incredible, writes beautifully and I hope to be the kind of mother to my children that she is to hers.  Through all of her trials and tribulations, I believe that she has become a truly remarkable human being.  She may have been before, but I didn’t know her then 😉

And my last nomination goes to Heidi and Buttons and Butterflies!  She is also a babyloss momma who CTT.  But she shares a love of sewing and crafting, like me!  She also has a charity in honor of her angel daughter called Butterfly Kisses where she embroiders babies’ name and footprints on blankets sent by grieving parents.  She has made some amazing quilts (one for Megan, actually!) and her blog talks about her adventures in sewing, decorating, parenting…it’s a good mix of life and hobbies.  And she has 4 boys at home, so life gets interesting!

Thanks for reading!

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