Pages

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Quick weekend getaway

I think I was still recouperating from the weekend and finally sat down to write about it.  Petey took a day to rest up too.














Saturday we got up bright and early...not too early really... to head to Fort Worth. Friday was Natalie's birthday and we wanted to help her celebrate. She didn't know that Jarad and Petey were coming.  We had talked about it but last she knew I had said he wasn't.  Surprise!!!














Saturday was National Margarita Day. So after stopping at Cavender's so Natalie could gift herself some boots, we headed straight to Joe T Garcia's to have some of the best margaritas in town. They did not disappointment.

 



















The weather was gorgeous and the people watching was prime. Afterwards we went back to her apartment to rest up before heading to a new country bar by her apartment, Guitars and Cadillacs. The bar was pretty packed because well they had $0.25 longnecks until 11:00. It was a cheap night and lucky for Natalie and I we got to spin around the dance floor with a couple of her coworkers who were excellent two steppers. They probably don't ever want to dance with me again because the spinning trips me up every time and I probably looked like a hot mess. Steak and Shake to end the night and I highly recommend their Garlic Burger. Ohhhh mmmmmyyyyyy gggggooooodddddnnneeesssss. Yes it was that good.

Sunday we leisurely got up and headed to the Stockyards. Jarad....well we all wanted to see the cattle drive that happens twice daily.

 
 
He smiles so pretty.




 
A Dr Pepper was neccessary that morning if you know what I mean and even better in a glass bottle.




 


















Shortly after we were hungry and headed to Fred's.



















They had live music and Jarad and I had some cheese fries with bacon and grilled onions. The grilled onions were a nice twist. Natalie and I ducked out to get my nails done. She uses this new product that her salon has and I was excited to try it. It's like the equivalent of powder coating for your nails. Anxious to see how long it lasts for me. I've already researched salons in Katy that use it. After the quick girl's get away we met back up with the boys at a bar called The Pour House. They had redone the place since Natalie had been there. She was amazed at how good it looked. We weren't that hungry but all the food looked amazing. So we split chicken and biscuits off the brunch menu. Biscuits with fresh breaded chicken tenders, cheese and all of it topped with gravy. Yumo 

Then because we hadn't eaten enough we headed to Dallas to Gas Monkey Bar and Grill. Jarad watches Fast and Loud, a show about redoing classic cars and the owners have a bar.  What I had envisioined the bar to be was completely different. 



 


















The atmosphere was a posher biker bar if you will.  They too had a live band on the outside stage that was open to bar and resturant and the food was ah-mazing.  Since we had nibbled all day Jarad and I split the chicken fried steak.  Our two sides were the 3 cheese truffled mac and roasted garclic ancho mashed potatoes.



















I want the recipe for both of them and oh how could I forget the bacon gravy on the steak. mmmm













Then because we were all full and tired we headed back to Natalie's apartment and watched the closing ceremony to Olympics while taste testing the cupcakes I had brough from Ohh La La in Katy.  The weekend was a lot of eating and a lot of fun.  I always enjoy going to Fort Worth and glad that Jarad joined me this time.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

I'm random and so is this post

 
 I had two Thursdays in a row this week because Wednesday felt like Thursday to me.  What a tease.  Thank goodness tomorrow is Friday.  I've had enough carpet for the week.


 
I was tired of my hair so I got it chopped last week with a new stylist.  She was good and I will definitely use her from now on.

 
I kind of have a crush on Willie Geist.  His personality is adorable and so is he.

 
I heart salads in huge bowls. #bigsaladsdontcare

 
I have a problem gettting rid of tshirts.  I did get rid of 5 or so to fit them all in this tote.  There is a tshirt in there that is 13 years old.  woah!!!

 
Peach and mint are everywhere for spring this year as well as floral prints.  So I added this scarf to my wardrobe... I needed it like I need a whole in my head bbbbuuutttttt it's an easy, cheap way to get the season's trend added to your wardrobe.
 
Again thank goodness tomorrow is Friday. The weekend should be a gooder.


Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Chicken Lazone

When I asked the husband yesterday what he wanted for dinner today he had no ideas.  So I cued up my Chef du Jour board on Pinterest and handed over my iPad for him to browse.  He chose a recipe for Chicken Lazone on the Plain Chicken blog.  When I pinned it awhile back I knew it was something that he would love.  It was pretty easy and a dish that anyone at any cooking level could make.  Perfect date night recipe for someone who is trying to impress.  I added mushrooms and two diced roma tomatoes for some more consistency and served it over mashed potatoes.  There was plenty of sauce... maybe too much but oh my was it tasty.  We had a salad on the side but asparagus or green beans or whatever you fancy would be great.  This will be something that we make again and again.



Chicken Lazone
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 lb chicken tenders
  • 1/4 cup butter, divided
  • 2 cups heavy cream
Combine salt, chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper. Sprinkle over both sides of chicken tenders.
 
In large saute pan, melt half of the butter over medium-high heat. Cook the chicken tenders until done, about 8 minutes.
 
Pour the cream and remaining butter into the skillet. Lower heat and simmer until the sauce thickens, about 5-7 minutes. Serve chicken and sauce over pasta or mashed potatoes, if desired.
 

This month's Holiday Decorations

St. Patrick's Day is the next holiday and so when Valentine's Day was over out came the green. Hopefully all the four leaf clovers around will bring us better luck in the next month. #luckoftheirish


Monday, February 17, 2014

Would-be Wordless Weekend

I can't post without words and so these type posts will now be called Would-be Wordless Weekend because I'm the boss around here and I can change things as I see fit.
 
My Valentines
 

Best Valentine....
 

The weather was so nice this weekend.  We had a fish fry on Sunday.
 

This was after we ate.  I over cook 95% of the time.
 

Petey likes patio sitting but he's a sass.
 

Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day to me...Ipsy

I had wanted to subscribe to Birchbox or Ipsy for awhile and I finally did it in November.  It might have been the end of October that I signed up but I can't remember.  I went with Ipsy because I felt it would be items and brands that I would more likely buy if I really like it.  Birchbox items seemed too expensive or not practical brands.  I read reviews and blog posts to make my decision.  I was on the waiting list for Ipsy for a month or so but got an email that if I liked their Facebook page I would be taken off the waiting list.  I did that and got my first bag in December.  I loved it. It comes in a bright pink mailer which I think makes it extra special.












In December I got a fingernail polish, trio eyeshadow, eye blending brush, a lipstick and a blush. Several of the items were full size and the colors were right on. The bag was cute and it stays in my purse with all my lipsticks, glosses, etc. that I wear on a more normal basis. I use all the items I got weekly and/or daily.


In January I wasn't as enamored with it.   The bag wasn't that cute and more items were sample size.  But the products were some nice things that I do use.  Benefit the POREfessional is a nice primer and really smooths your skin before you put on your foundation.  The lip balm is easy to squeeze out too much but it really makes your lips soft.  The Balanced Guru Balm Me Up is perfect for dry spots this winter; especially on the inside of my elbows.  Makeup cleansing cloths are always nice for travel or when I'm being too lazy to take my make up off in the sink.  The foundation is a great color for me and a little lighter than my Mary Kay liquid foundation.  It's perfect for those fast makeup days.
 


Yesterday I got my February bag.  It was like an early Valentine's Day present to myself.  The bag is cute this month.  The lip gloss is too pink for me but the blush and fingernail polish are perfect colors.  I love wearing fake eyelashes on special occasions but rarely buy them myself.  The Velvet Gel is to help with age and sun spots.  Lord knows I have those.  I'll be interested to see how it reduces them.
 
I love having this little treat in the mail every month.  It's $10 per month and is drafted out of my bank account at the beginning of the month.  Ipsy is great at sending out emails when they are preparing your bag and sending a tracking number when it ships.  I have another friend who receives the bag as well.  She actually was getting Birchbox and Ipsy and likes the Ipsy better for the same reasons I chose it.  It's fun to see what we each get and we will do some swaps should a color or item we get not work for us.  Also, the bags will be perfect to give gifts in throughout the year.
 
I still love my Mary Kay makeup but don't think it's the end all or best products for every item.  It's fun to be able to get things to experiment with or try new brands without having to spend a fortune.  You take a quiz and tell them what's important to you, what brands you would like to try, how daring you are with trends, etc.  There are so many monthly boxes out there but for now I'm really enjoying the Ipsy one.
 
What are your favorite beauty items?
 
*I will do a monthly review of my Ispy bag from now on.
 

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Sleep Sleep ZZZZZZ

I am by no means a sleep expert or always a good sleeper.  But I love sleep...sleep at night, a nap, in the car....I just love sleep and have to have it. 



















As a little kid I would ask my parents to go to bed.  Now what kid does that?!?!  My sleep schedule, amount and quality had slowly gotten worse as an adult.  It doesn't help that my husband is a giant and snores plus I have the cutest basset hound who also snores and sleeps in the bed with us.  Sure I could knock Petey out of the bed but he's just too cute.



















So at the end of November enough was enough and we went from a queen to a king.  Plus the bed we had was super soft and now we have a plush which is in between...not too soft and not too firm.  Jarad thinks it's too firm but the guy says that it will become softer over time.  It is heavenly in my opinion. 



The bed has made a huge difference in how I sleep but there are some other things that help.  Celestial Seasonings makes a Sleepytime tea that is a mix of chamomile, lemongrass and spearmint. It has a great aroma and helps me wind down.  It comes in traditional tea bags but the also make k cups for your keurig.  Annnnnndddddd I just saw on their website they have more than just this one kind....I like options.  Will have to see if the grocery store, World Market or the like have any of the other kinds.

Sleepytime Herbal Tea

I will also some time take melatonin.  I have also been know to take benadryl or night time Tylenol.  I try to keep the meds and the melatonin to a minimum but when the mind is racing it helps.  I like the melatonin more than the others by the way it makes me feel during the night and in the morning. 















Also, if I wake up in the middle of the night I try my hardest not to look at my phone or turn on a light when I go to the bathroom.  I find the brightness, even if just a little, will wake me even more and it's harder to get back to sleep. 

So on that note I'm going to take a nap..ok not really...

What are your sleeping tips and tricks?

Monday, February 10, 2014

BBQ Bacon Stuffed Meatloaf

I love a good meatloaf and will try making different kinds at home and not ashamed to order it at a resturant either.  For some reason, I feel that meatloaf has a weird place in this world and people look at you weird when you order it.  I like mine with mashed potatoes and some sort of green side.  I found a recipe recently through Pinterest for a BBQ Bacon Stuffed Meatloaf that you make in the covered baker from Pampered Chef in the microwave. 

I didn't have the bbq rub and so I substituted bbq sauce instead.  I put 3 tablespoons in the meat mixture and about 2 tablespoons with the ketchup to put on top.  Instead of the sandwhich bread slices, I used a cup of panko breadcrumbs cause I already had them and a loaf of bread in our house would go to waste.  I also used 2 lbs of meat (I think it was ground sirloin and ground chuck maybe.  use what you like) because I wanted it to be for two meals.  Yes Jarad you are eating leftovers tonight.
 
It didn't stay together that well as slices but the flavor was there.  I served mine with Ore Ida Steam n' mash potatoes. They're so easy when I don't feel like peeling potatoes and makes just enough for the two of us for two meals.  I also had a steamable bag of asparagus from Aldi.  Once steamed I sprayed butter on it (I can't believe it's not butter spray is the bomb diggity and no calories).  I also put some garlic pepper and the 21 Seasoning Salute from Trader Joe's on it.  Delicious!!




BBQ BACON-STUFFED MEATLOAF from the Pampered Chef Deep Covered Baker cookbook

8 ounces fresh mushrooms
1 tbsp vegetable oil
6 slices cooked bacon, crumbled, divided
3 slices white sandwich bread
1/2 cup 2% milk
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
1 egg yolk
3 tbsp smokey bbq rub, divided
2 garlic cloves, pressed
1/2 tsp or each salt and coarsely ground black pepper
1 1/2 pounds 85% lean ground beef
1 1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided
1/4 cup ketchup

Thinly slice mushrooms. Heat oil in 12 in. skillet over medium high heat 1-3 minutes or until simmering. Add mushrooms; cook and stir 3-4 minutes or until mushrooms begin to brown. Remove skillet from heat. Set aside 1 tbsp of the crumble bacon. Add remaining bacon to mushrooms and mix well.

Meanwhile, cut bread into cubes. In stainless 6 qt mixing bowl, combine bread, milk, onion, parsley, egg yolk, 2 tbsp of the rub, pressed garlic, salt and pepper. Mix well. Add beef to bread mixture; mix. place two thirds of meet mixture in deep covered baker form into an 8 1/2 by 4 1/2 loaf. Gently press down the center of the loaf to create a well. Sprinkle 1/2 cup of the cheese in the well. Top with bacon mixture and an additional 1/2 cup of the cheese. Place remaining meat mixture over filling press to seal.

Microwave, covered, on high 14-17 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 145 in the center. Carefully remove baker from microwave, using oven mitts. Meanwhile, combine ketchup and remaining rub; stir. Brush Ketchup mixture over meatloaf. Microwave, covered, on high 3-5 minutes or until internal temperature is 160 in the center. Sprinkle remaining cheese and reserved bacon over top of meatloaf; let stand, covered, 10 minutes before slicing.


Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Quaker Warm & Crunchy Granola

Yesterday while at the grocery store I had "something for breakfast" on my list.  I like oatmeal especially when it's cold outside but sometimes the mushy consistency of it gets to me.  But with cold in the forecast for at least the next week, I still found myself in the oatmeal section.  And lights were spotlighting and music was playing ...ok not that dramatic but I saw Quaker Warm & Crunchy Granola.  The description on the box was that you got that same warmness like oatmeal but with a crunch.  This was going to perfect and it was.  I purchased the Honey Almond variety but there was also Apple Cinnamon and Cranberry Almond.  Crunch, warm and only 210 calories when you use skim milk.   Breakfast perfection.  I will definitely be purchasing this again.  I got mine from Target.  It is regularly $3.99 but was on sale for $2.50.  There are 8 packets in a box.



*I guess in Blogland I'm suppose to say this is not a sponsored post because I'm not that cool...yet

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

To Die for Crock Pot Roast

Last week with cold temps still happening... I know not as cold as some places...I was in the mood for some good ol' comfort food.  I hadn't made a roast in awhile and a friend had been telling me about a recipe that they had been using that was amazing.  So I googled and found a recipe on food.com that was pretty much what she described.  The recipe on food.com was called To Die for Crock Pot Roast and it was delicious.  I had to make myself stop eating it.  It didn't photo really well and I didn't take time to make it right because I was so ready to eat it.


Ingredients:
  • 1 (4-5lb) beef roast, any kind*
  • 1 (1 1/4 oz) package brown gravy mix, dry
  • 1 (1 1/4 oz) package dried Italian salad dressing mix, dry
  • 1 (1 1/4 oz) package ranch dressing mix, dry
  • 1/2 cup water**
*   My roast was 2.3ish lbs and was plenty for two.  We got 3 meals or so out of it.
** I used a can of reduced sodium beef broth instead of the water.

  1. Put roast in crock pot.
  2. Mix the dried mixes together in a bowl and sprinkle over the roast.
  3. Pour the water around the roast.
  4. Cook on low for 7-9 hours.
I dumped all the dry mixes on top and then poured the beef broth over it.  I had some mushrooms that I needed to use and forgot to put them in at the beginning.  I added them with an hour or so left.  I served this over garlic parmesan mashed potatoes but could easily see it served over egg noodles.

This recipe definitely won't disappoint.