Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Another What's Up Wednesday!

It is time for a What's Up Wednesday.


What we're eating this week:  I decided to start off the year by trying out some meal kit subscription services and I am tried Blue Apron first and then moved on to Hello Fresh. This week is my first (of 3) week of Plated. In the last few weeks I have had some delicious dishes and a couple that weren't my favorite. Last night I had delicious chicken empenadas.





What I'm reminiscing about: 
I am reminiscing about my fabulous trip to Disney World that I just took with my parents and one of my sisters. We missed my husband and my other sister but had a wonderful time.  I guess it is a good thing I am planning to go to Disneyland in March!



What I'm loving:
 I am loving that after a fairly quiet February I have a couple of fun things planned in the upcoming weeks!


What we've been up to: 
I went down to Salinas this past weekend to attend a charity auction for CSUMB and had a wonderful time but other than that it has been pretty quiet around these parts.



What I'm dreading: I am not really dreading anything at the moment though I am always dreading cleaning my house since no matter how many times I clean it it just doesn't stay clean.

What I'm working on: I am working on eating healthy and continuing to go to the gym consistently now that my foot has pretty much healed. I am in a weight loss challenge at the gym and one at work. I probably won't win either one but they are fun anyway.



What I'm excited about:
 We are going to Universal Studios with my husband's family at the end of the week. I don't think I have been since I was in college so there are lots of rides I have not been on including all of Harry Potter land.

What I'm watching/reading: My husband and I are finally just about caught up on the Walking Dead and are on the current season.  Still very bloody but I like this season better than the previous season. I am still trying to read a book a month.  I am only about halfway though my February book but my upcoming road trip should allow me to finish it with no problems.

What I'm listening to: Mostly whatever comes on my Pandora which is usually a mix of country and a random mix of 90s-00s pop music.  Everyone needs some Britney in their life every once in a while.

What I'm wearing: 


Last month I was waiting for this shirt to arrive in the mail and thinking I yet would be able to wear it with this skirt in navy blue and I am happy to report it looks fabulous.

What I'm doing this weekend: Heading to Universal Studios with my husband's family!





Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Tuesday Talk-Long Weekend Wrap Up

Before I got to enjoy my three day weekend I had to get through a very chaotic week at work.

My department at work has been under construction for the last few months and this past week the construction on the area I sit in was finally completed.  We move in next week but since I am one of the project managers and have been in and out of the new space more times than I can count I took a few pictures of my new area in advance of moving in.

I have not had a permanent desk in over a year so in addition to being ready to have this project complete I am looking forward to having a desk. Wish me luck in unpacking a years worth of boxes that have been following me around into my new desk!

Saturday morning I headed down to Monterey to help my mom set up for a charity auction that she is the chair of.  I wore my new weekend shirt in celebration of the fact that it was three day weekend and it is comfy for helping move things around before the auction.  There were plenty of people around to help with set up so it only ended up taking a few hours.  My mom and I went out to lunch before heading back to my parents to rest for a few hours before getting all dressed up and fancy to attend the auction.
The theme of the auction is Have a Heart for Students so there was lots of red and gold and hearts all over the room.  


I got all dressed up in my new dress (it had pockets!) and headed out to drink wine, eat cheese and bid on things.  I am not in a place in my life where bidding on the live auction part of the night is feasible so I stuck to the silent auction. I ended up winning a few bottles of wine and some tasting certificates so I call that a success.
Sunday I slept in at my parents house, went to visit my grandma and then had burritos for lunch with my mom and my aunt before driving back home. Sunday was the break in the storm that has been hitting our area so I lucked out and had a pretty easy drive home.

Monday the storm was back in full force so after the gym and a couple of errands (can't risk running out of TP) I curled up at home for the afternoon. Since the weather was so cold and stormy outside soup seemed like the perfect thing for lunch.
As you can see below my afternoon was just so thrilling. Filling out tax forms is not my idea of an ideal afternoon but it had to be done. I did all the number part of the tax return so now I just have to go back and write our name and SSN about 50 billion times at the top of each page.


After a good weekend I am back to work for a short week.  Not sure how much work will be getting done this week since everyone has to unpack their desks but hopefully it should be less chaotic than last week. One can hope!

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

My Loves

In honor of Valentine's Day here are a few photos of the people I love.


Obviously had to start with my wonderful husband! I get wake up every morning with this wonderful man next to me and I am so grateful he is my partner in life.


My parents who supported and love me from the day I was born and I know will continue to do so forever


My sisters who even though we live all over the country at this point will fly all over the world to help me do whatever and I would do the same for them.


All my favorite girls who flew all the way to Hawaii to help me celebrate my wedding. I don't get see any of them as often as I would like but I love them like sisters. Ok two of them actually are my sisters but you get the point.


My mom's whole fabulous side of my family! My dad's whole family is fabulous too but I couldn't find a big group picture of them.


A few of my childhood girlfriends who are still wonderful oh so many years later. There are a few missing but they are no less wonderful.


A few of my college girlfriends who are now all over the world doing fantastic wonderful things.


My husbands amazing family that has welcomed me into the family with open arms.

Wishing all of them a Happy Valentine's Day wherever they might be!


Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Nail Polish Swap

Last month I had the opportunity to join a nail polish exchange. I love getting things in the mail and I love making care packages for people so this seemed like the perfect opportunity to do both.

I got paired up with Betsy at Our Greatest Adventure and had a great time shopping for some fun nail polish for her.  I forgot to take a picture of what I sent her before I popped it in the mail but check out her blog to see what I sent.

She sent me my nail polishes in the cutest red bubble wrap package and when I opened it up the nail polish was in a cute purple cosmetic bag.



We got to get to know each other by reading our blogs and over email so she knew my favorite color is purple. This purple color is really fun and I am looking forward to wearing it on my toes. It is a little hard to read in the picture but it is called "Do You Have This Color in Stock-holm?"



She also sent along a very nice pinky color.  You can never have too many pink nail polishes so I was super excited to see this in my package. It looks a little more orange in the picture but in real life it is a really nice dusty pink.



Stop by the blogs of the hosts to see what other people sent to their swap partners!



Sunday, February 5, 2017

Blue Apron Review

As I talked about last month I have decided this is the year I am finally going to try out all those meal prep delivery services that I am always hearing about. I love to cook but sometimes I find myself cooking the same things or the same types of things over and over again. In January I tried 3 weeks of Blue Apron and since each week they send you 3 meals I got to try 9 different dishes. I will talk about each meal I was sent and then I will talk about my experience as a whole.

The first meal I got was Spicy Korean Rice Cakes with Yu Choy and Soft Boiled Eggs. These were delicious.  I had never had Korean rice cakes and had never cooked a soft boiled egg so in addition to be delicious it took me out of my comfort zone.

The second recipe I made was a Roasted Sweet Potato Quesidilla with an Arugula Salad. This meal was also delicious.  I was given a whole sweet potato for this dish and there was no way the whole thing was going to fit in the two tortillas they gave me so I had lots left to just eat by themselves. This one was also delicious.

A Spinach and Mushroom Calzone was the last meal I cooked the first week.  This one was good but actually my least favorite of the week.  It made 3 servings so I had leftovers which was kind nice but the leftover calzone got kind of soggy in the microwave.

My second week started with Za'atar-Roasted Broccoli Salad. This dish was fantastic. I don't normally like broccoli but I discovered I actually like roasted broccoli so that was a win.

This was Indonesian Spiced Salmon with a marinated radish. This was the one dish I really just didn't like very much. I don't eat cooked salmon much but I thought it was because I just don't cook fish very much. I think I just don't like it much. I also wasn't a fan of the marinated radish that also had raw red onions in it. Bad breath city!

This Beet, Goat Cheese and Poppy Seed Fehttuchini was another one of my favorite dishes from Blue Apron. I know I like beets but they are not something I cook with too often and I love pasta so it was great to be able to cook something I make all the time with something I don't make but like. I have actually taken this recipe, altered it just and bit and made it again since I received it that week. 

This was Beef Tacos with a Radish Salsa and Roasted Sweet Potatoes. This was a good dish and while I am all for cheese with pretty much everything the sweet potatoes would have been just as good with the pepper sauce and not adding the cheese. If I made this again I would leave off the cheese to save a few calories.
Orange and Mirin Glazed Cod was my second meal in my third week. The cod, the sauce and the bed of barley it was all sitting on was delicious but this confirmed that I just don't like sautéed broccoli that much. I ate some of the broccoli but ended up eating around most of it.


This was West African Peanut Stew and while it was good it was nothing too exciting. The sauce was not quite as thick as I would have like it to be and just ended up all over the plate.












Overall I like my meals I got from Blue Apron. I can't compare them to any other companies yet since they were the first ones I tried so my pros and cons may be a little short this month. Come back next month when I have tried my second delivery service (Hello Fresh) and actually have something to compare to.

Pro:

  • It was nice to only have the ingredients I needed for a recipe and not to have to buy a whole bottle of something I will only use once.
  • Made me cook things out of my comfort zone and use ingredients I don't normally use.
Cons:
  • When you go on the Blue Apron website to choose which 3 of the 6 meals they offer each week you can't choose any 3 you want.  If you choose certain recipes it doesn't allow you to choose certain other ones.  It looks like you can choose all 3 vegetarian or all 3 non-vegetarian but if you want to choose a mix of vegetarian and non-vegetarian you are limited as to combination. This limit was part of the reason one week I ended up all vegetarian and one week I ended up all meat.
Let me know if anyone has an tips on other meal delivery services I should try and I will be back next month to review my 3 weeks of Hello Fresh.



Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Valentine's Day Decorations

Now that it is officially February I decided it was time to share my Valentine's Day decorations.  I have had them up for a couple of weeks already because my house looked so empty after taking down my Christmas decorations that I couldn't leave it undecorated for too long.

A couple of fun dish towels dress up my little kitchen a bit.


I got this table runner in the dollar section of Target but it ended up being too short for both my dining table and my coffee table so I put it on my counter instead. I added some sequins and a heart sign and called it a day.




I didn't add to many new decorations this year but since I had new kitchen towels I decided to use one of my older ones as a part of my dining table centerpiece. I love decorating with my collection of wine corks and this is the perfect time of year to use them. My collection keeps getting larger...I wonder why??





Valentine's Day is a Tuesday this year so my husband and I are not doing anything too exciting on the actual day but we are going out to dinner the Sunday before for a little celebration.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Stitch Fix #20

This Stitch Fix box came right before I left for my trip to Florida so I had requested some things that would be appropriate to wear to a theme park. I am pretty sure this is one of the only boxes I have received that didn't have a single dress in it.

This cute little grey vest would have been great on someone else but it just wasn't my style. It was a little tight across the chest and there are just very few things in my closet that I would be able to wear it so I sent this one back.

When I pulled this shirt out of the box I was kind of meh about it and once I put in on the feeling was the same. It was flowey and comfy but not particularly flattering.


This polka dotted sweater was super cute and feminine.  It was flattering on but was just a little too fitted for me to spend the money on knowing if I get pregnant this will stop fitting me in just about a hot minute. If had been less expensive I might have bought it because I really did like it.


Oh pants... Pants and I have a very tumultuous relationship. Most pants are too big in the waist and too small in the hips and/or rear end. These skinny jeans were no exception to the norm and didn't quite fit correctly so they went back.


These Toms look kind of pink in the picture but they actually were a nice neutral beige. Not sure whether I would have gotten enough wear out of them to justify keeping them but it didn't matter anyway because they were at least 1/2 a size too big.


I didn't end up keeping anything this month but I am super excited to see what my next box has in store for me.  If you want you own box you can go here to get one.  See you next month!