Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Free Printable Christmas Gift Tags!


Holiday Gift Tags
************************

I made three new holiday gift tag printables just for you! Three in one day?!??? Yes, I suppose I am feeling extra generous given the gloriousness of the season!

The ones pictured above were made for my mom and she is hosting them over at her site, The Inspired Room.  Click here to visit her and download the Peace on Earth gift tags! Aren't they adorable?

The other two are located on my printables page! Just print, cut, and spread some holiday cheer!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Pan-Fried Chickpeas Recipe {Delicious AND Nutritious!}


Happy Monday! Have you all recovered from your Thanksgiving food comas? I haven't. I think I'm still full. In order to lose the extra poundage acquired from Thanksgiving festivities, I offer you a healthy snack recipe! This is my go-to chip substitute. It's not only delicious, but also very nutritious!

These adorable little legumes, known as chickpeas or garbanzo beans, get extra scrumptious when you fry them in oil and sprinkle them with seasonings. It is SO easy. Simply put pre-cooked chickpeas into a frying pan (canned works!) with some olive oil (1-2 tablespoons) and sprinkle with your seasoning of choice. There are so many options here: salt & pepper, garlic, cumin, paprika, cinnamon, chili powder, curry powder, rosemary....whatever. I usually do either salt, pepper and garlic, or cumin and paprika. Then you just fry 'em up over medium heat, shaking the pan occasionally until they are brown and cracklin'!

And voila! You are now a gourmet chef. Serve them warm and try not to burn your tongue by resisting popping them in your mouth before they even leave the pan (as I usually do...).

By the way, these are AMAZING on salads.


Thursday, November 24, 2011

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!



I had a wonderful day full of ridiculous amounts of food, cute puppy Jack, handsome lil brother, and mimosas. Now the whole fam is together watching The Blind Side and eating pumpkin pie. So thankful for family. Hope your Thanksgiving was as perfect as mine! Saturday is Thanksgiving round two with Lance's fam. Two Thanksgivings? Yes, I think I am okay with that.
 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Hunger Games

Seriously cannot wait for this.



  

Also, I joined up here for a blogger Secret Santa! Should be fun and you should join too!

Monday, November 21, 2011

"I'm blank because..."

I got this fun idea from Little Miss Momma.

I’m weird because…
  • I'm afraid of butterflies.
  • I absolutely LOVE Brussels sprouts.
  • I must have cozy feet at all times or I am not complete.
  • I am/was obsessed with the show LOST. So much so that  I threw a Dharma inspired party for the finale:

  • If my nails scratch a weird texture (like scratching a chalkboard), I have to literally wipe the feeling off. I have to do it to other people sometimes too.
  • I have a strangely wide and sometimes seemingly opposite range of interests. It wouldn't be unusual to find me reading Twilight in the morning and Nietzche at night. Or watching Teen Mom in the morning and Battlestar Gallactica at night. The Matrix, Saw, Braveheart, and The Notebook are all my favorites. Two websites I visit daily: BBC news and e!online. Let's just call it well rounded. Or weird. Yeah, maybe just weird.
  • I have a whole facebook album devoted to "Wolfey's" European travels. Those who know me in real life often catch Wolfey staring at them from across the room. He's tame. Except when he bites children while I babysit. Meet Wolfey (not to be confused with his cousin- Silent Coyote):


I’m a bad friend because… 
I'm kind of a homebody. 
I'm bad at keeping in contact.
I tend to make others be the ones to make the effort. 
I'm not an open book.     

I'm a good friend because..
I'm a fantastic listener.
I'm loyal.
I respect other people's views and opinions.
I will do absolutely anything for my friends.   

I am sad because..
We live in a world where there is so much inequality.    

I am happy because... 
I have an amazing God.
I have an amazing husband.
I have an amazing family.  

I am excited for... 
The dinner on the stove. 
The wine in the fridge. 
Thanksgiving weekend. 
Christmas.


Linking up at Little Miss Momma! You can join too!


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Anthropologie Bedding

Oh Anthro, you slay me. I've been really obsessing over Anthropologie bedding lately. Of course, I'm always obsessing over all Anthro decor and clothing. I have this awesome brass bed, but my bedding is kind of boring. I'm in desperate need of some texture and color. Just look at these bedrooms! Amazing. Kills me.

Behold the amazingness and let me know which one is your favorite in the comments!









All photos from Anthropologie

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Insta Dump.

Just thought I'd clean out my Instagram and share. So please embrace the randomness.


1. Yes, I was this close to that Zebra. I nearly had a heart attack. We went to The Olympic Game Farm on our anniversary. His head was literally inside my car.

2. There are always amazing views while on the Seattle ferry.

3. These would be tulips

4. Awesome red doors

5. Cool exposed brick and gallery wall @ Bubby's

6. Yummy drink on date night

7. John Lennon memorial

8. My glowing, angelic husband

9. This is pepper bacon.Yeah, I took a picture of it. So what?

10. JACK!

11. Times Square

12. Love Birds

THE END

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Another Fab Lentil Soup {Coconut Red Lentil Soup Recipe}

Photo from 101 Cookbooks


Sorry if you hate lentils. Not that I know how you could possibly hate them. I know I posted a curried lentil soup recipe a couple of weeks ago. But I just can't not share! I get so into soup during the fall and winter months. I make at least one big pot every week.

This recipe over at 101 Cookbooks was a great one to add to my growing collection of lentil soup recipes. It got better and better every day that we had it for leftovers. We served it over brown rice. It was grand.

I definitely suggest not using light coconut milk though. That's all I had, but I can tell it would have been a lot better with whole.


Click here for recipe>>>>>>>>>Coconut Red Lentil Soup




Friday, November 11, 2011

Life With Lance


Life with Lance
(where I share things I find amusing about life with my husband)

1. Lance likes chick flicks. Score! He will happily watch Gossip Girl, The Bachelor, The Notebook, and Desperate Housewives with me. He will also deeply discuss our feelings on the relationships between characters. Important things such as whether or not Blair and Chuck are meant for each other, or who the Bachelor will let go this week. Now if only I could get him to watch Battlestar Galactica or 24 with me... Oh well, you win some and you lose some. :)

DISCLAIMER (as mandated by Lance): Some of Lance's favorite movies are Gladiator and the James Bond Films. He enjoys watching football, eating steak and drinking beer. He just so happens to also be down with watching chick flicks (for the hot female leads, obviously).


2. Lance has a hard time posing for pictures with me. Any pictures of two of use have been an exception among about fifty like these:


3. Lance takes martial arts and like to show me his moves. I usually object for fear of lack of coordination on his part. Last week when I reluctantly agreed to letting him show me how he could kick over my head, I ended up being kicked *hard* in the chin. I have the bruise to show for it. Never again, never again. Lance has requested that I point out that I am at fault for this. He believes I moved my head right into his kick after he told me to stand still. I deny this claim. 
Please excuse my lack of shirt.



4. Today Lance had the urge to blast Rebecca Black's Friday through the house. Loudly. Over and over again. When will the madness stop??!


And those are just four of the reasons why I love life with Lance. 

To be continued...


H    A    P    P    Y    W    E    E    K    E    N    D





Thursday, November 10, 2011

Cranberry, Apple, Sausage and Pecan Stuffing

I can't believe it's almost Thanksgiving! Why do the holidays always sneak up on us? This year I'm bringing the stuffing to our family meal. I've never made it, but it's Hubby's fave part of the meal. Talk about pressure! So I decided to try a recipe early to ensure I didn't fail miserably.

As I looked for recipes, nothing was quite what I was envisioning. So I decided to make it up myself.

I prefer a moist (hate that word!) stuffing so this recipe turned out moist not-dry, but still fluffy. Perfectly balanced. Hubs loved it so I'd call it a success! Since we didn't have all the other Thanksgiving meal elements, we served our stuffing over some delicata squash (baked at 350 for one hour). It was bomb. We've been stuffing our faces ever since (see what I did there?).

Please excuse the unattractiveness of this picture. It tastes much better than this makes it appear. 




Cranberry, Apple, Sausage
and Pecan Stuffing
(with cornbread and sourdough)
Serves 8-10

Ingredients
Cornbread (7 cups cubed)
Sourdough Bread (7 cups cubed)
Butter (1/2 a stick)
Mild Italian Sausage (1 lb)
Green Apples (2)
Celery (2 cups chopped)
Onion (1 medium sized)
Fresh Garlic (2 cloves)
Chopped Pecans (1 cup)
Dried Cranberries (1 cup)
Low Sodium Chicken Broth (3-4 cups)
Thyme (fresh or dried) (1/2 teaspoon)
Sage (fresh or dried) (1/2 teaspoon)
Fresh Parsley (1/4 cup)
Salt & Pepper to taste

What to do with those ingredients:
Prep Work
  • Chop Cornbread and Sourdough into approx. 1-inch cubes (7 cups of each kind) and let dry for 24 hours or toast in a 275 degree oven for 30 minutes. I bought a loaf of premade cornbread at Trader Joe's to save time and mess, but you could make your own! If sourdough repulses you, french or whole wheat bread works as well!
  • Peel, core, and dice the two green apples
  • Dice the onion, chop the celery (2 cups of celery) and mince the garlic
  • Chop herbs (if using fresh)


 Cooking
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees 
  • Remove casing from sausage and cook until almost brown in large frying pan, breaking up as you go. Then add diced apples and cook for about five minutes (or until sausage is brown)
  • Move sausage and apple mixture to a bowl
  • In the same pan, melt 1/2 stick of butter and add onions, garlic, celery, and pecans. Add spices. Cook until onions are translucent. 
  • Place bread cubes in a large mixing bowl. Mix in sausage mixture and onion mixture
  • Now slowly pour in the chicken broth until stuffing is moist, but not drenched. (I used almost four cups and it produced a moist and flavorful final result)
  • Now mix in cranberries and salt and pepper to taste. Taste and add more spices if you please.
  • Pour Stuffing into a baking dish (9x13) and bake at 350 for about 30-35 minutes until hot all the way through and crispy on top

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

LOVE YOU {Free Printable Gift Tags}

Pssst....did you see my new printable last week? I didn't really post about it.

Because I love you ever so much, I made free printable gift tags so you can spread the love! Use them for your loved one's birthdays, Valentine's Day, Christmas gifts, or just a random note of love! I used it to surprise Hubby with a new book he wanted.

Just print, cut, hole punch, and use!

You should be able to click here and be redirected to Google Docs, then click the file menu and "download original". Then print as many as you need!




Visit the Printables Page for a full list of free printables!


Stay tuned tomorrow for a Thanksgiving stuffing recipe! Think sausage, apples, pecans and cranberries. MMMM....

Monday, November 7, 2011

My Attempt at Sewing.


This pillow is the only thing I have to show for owning a sewing machine for 11 months. Upon receiving my very own sewing machine for Christmas last year, I vowed to spend my days creating every sewable object imaginable. Ha. Right. But my attempt at a pillow cover is cute, right?

In my defense I was very busy with school and work...until March, when I graduated. For 7 months I have had no excuse.

Starting today I will renew my enthusiasm and begin my journey to sewing mastery. Maybe I will even make my own Christmas presents this year! Do I dare? Maybe. No promises.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Date Night

Just a few pictures from date night.  We like to go on dates to Whole Foods. In fact, if hubs had his way, all dates would be had at Whole Foods. 
He usually always gets his way.


Happy Weekend!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Delicious Curried Lentil Soup Recipe

photo from Oh She Glows

I tried this curried lentil soup recipe from Angela over at Oh She Glows a few weeks ago. It was AMAZING. So very wonderful that I have made it once a week since. And, because Lance is the meat-loving man he is, I added some spicy Italian sausage (four of them sliced and cooked in a separate pan, added at the end). But I'm positive it is just as good without. Go check it out and make it for dinner this week. DO IT.

Click here>>>>>>>>>>>>> Curried Lentil Soup Recipe

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The Cave {I complain too much}

I want to move.

Husband and I fondly refer to our apartment as The Cave. We get no direct sunlight. At all. I frequently go out for the day dressed for the entirely wrong kind of weather. I usually have no idea if it's raining, snowing, sunny, or anything else until I get up the stairs and to my car. Nothing like spending sunny days in rain boots and rainy days in sandals. Clearly I need to learn to leave earlier so I can go back in and change. Oh, the woes of not being a morning person.

As you can see in the picture below, we are below ground. There are *maybe* twenty-five minutes per day where sunlight pours out through that hole wayyyyy up there and if I catch it at just the right time I can open my blinds to see the sunlight streaming into the courtyard outside my window. Twenty-five minutes of pure bliss every day, if  I catch it and if the clouds clear out (how 'bout it Seattle?).


I really can't wait to move out. We're just not ready to commit to another lease right now. Lance is about to graduate and we have no idea where life will take us in the next year. 

I like to complain about The Cave as frequently as possible, indulging in a few loud grumbles every day. Yesterday, during one of those very rants, I was struck with a reminder of how much I actually have. This occurred to me as I embarked upon my massive chore list and realized that I had about ten loads of laundry to catch up on. Ten?!?! We have enough clothes, towels and sheets to do ten loads of laundry plus plenty of clean clothes in the closet?! Um. I'm mortified. Donation time. 

We have way more than we need and I have the nerve to complain about my life because I'm too lazy to check the weather before going out? At least I have a place to live. I could become aware of the weather because the rain soaks through my cardboard box in the morning. But no, I'm privileged enough to be able to look it up on my fancy MacBook or iPhone. Gross.

I still want to move. But I really need to remember to be looking at my Thankful List and remembering how much God has blessed me with versus what I may not be content with. Remember: positive thoughts more than negative thoughts.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Giving Thanks {Free Thanksgiving Printable}


Confession: Sometimes I find it easier to dish out complaints than to be thankful. It takes serious effort for me to dwell on what I have to grateful for. With Thanksgiving quickly approaching, I decided to make my "What I'm thankful for" list early and post it on my mirror. This way I am learning to remember what I'm thankful for every day, not just one day a year.

Here is the template I made and used to create my list. Feel free to print as many as you would like. You could make your own list and post it like I did, or hand them out to the family on Thanksgiving and go around the table and read your lists aloud. You should be able to click here and be redirected to Google Docs, then click the file menu and "download original". Then print as many as you need!



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Visit the Printables Page for a full list of free printables!