Sunday, March 31, 2013

Spring (not so much) Break?!

This past week I have been on Spring Break from school. And what a productive week it's been, which also means it hasn't been the most relaxing of breaks. I probably said, on multiple occasions in the past week, that it's going to be worth it (out loud and to myself after inhaling many paint fumes). Sadly I don't really have that many pictures to show my work, but I got a lot of painting done...more than I had set a goal for.

I really wanted to get the master bedroom done before we moved in as well as this room that I am calling "random room to the right." We bought all the paint and then I realized "random room to the right" contains a wall that doesn't really end. That means I would have had to paint half the house. We quickly aborted that plan and went with an accent wall, but that also left me with a lot of leftover Tucker's Truck (the paint color). Trucker's Truck went to the world's smallest powder room as well as a hallway bath. Both have harrowing painting tales. I will spare you the details of ballet and gymnastics on a ladder and discovering the paint store didn't give you the additional can of Tucker's Truck you asked for, but actually gave you an additional can of your master bedroom color. We also have the world's largest master bedroom that contains a "monster wall" as termed by my Honey Boo Boo who saved my life helping me do the second coat. I've also moved a lot of boxes.

The highlight and the low light of the week go to our dear sweet garage door. Quick back story: we had asked for the door to be fixed after the home inspection and the owner didn't fix it which we discovered at our closing. He ended up giving us the cash to fix it after some negotiating. The company came to fix it last Monday and it was great all week while I was working on the house. Well yesterday Matt came to see it and wanted to try it out. All I have to say is thank god no one's car was in there and no person was standing in there because that thing came ripping and crashing out of the wall. Talk about a joyful start to homeownership. Cross your fingers and everything else that I can get them to fix it for real tomorrow...on my last day of break :(

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Cooking Class

Lavender Creme Brulee
A couple of Fridays ago Matt and I went to Sur La Table to take a cooking class. I was really excited about it for obvious reasons. I think Matt enjoyed it too. We received a gift card which is why we decided to take the class in the first place because let me tell you those Sur La Table classes are expensive. While the experience was good, we didn't have to clean up after ourselves, and the food we made was delicious, I don't think I would do it again. After the price that was paid you have to work in a group to cook your food, and a lot of things were already done in advance. I guess I just think that for the money I should have been able to have the full experience between the two of us. Hopefully you will see some recipes on the blog from the experience which included crab cakes with lemon aioli, asparagus with tarragon butter, steak with bourbon mushrooms, and lavender creme brulee. 

Matt sauteing some bourbon mushrooms

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Recipe of the Week!

Buffalo Mac and Cheese
If you want to make something super bad for you, make this. This was our Superbowl meal this year. I have to say I prefer regular mac and cheese, but this was something different and still good. I kinda made this up. I really like buffalo chicken dip so I made that recipe and then I made a regular mac and cheese cheese sauce and added it to cooked pasta. Then I baked it all together in the oven. Warning this was super rich.

8 oz cream cheese
1/2 cup blue cheese dressing
1/2 cup Red Hot
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
2 cans (12.5 oz. each) Chunk Chicken Breast 
1 lb. shape pasta...I used the long spirals 
2 tbs. flour
2 tsp. dry mustard
2 1/2 cups skim milk
3 1/2 cups cheddar cheese

Cook pasta and drain. In a bowl mix together the first 5 ingredients. In a pot, melt 2 tablespoons butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the flour and mustard with a wooden spoon until smooth. Whisk in the milk until thick. Whisk in the cheddar. Combine the cheese sauce, buffalo dip, and cooked pasta in a large bowl and then spread evenly in a 9 x 13 pan. Top with bread crumbs and parsley. Bake 30-40 minutes at 350 degrees. 

Sunday, March 17, 2013

We Bought a House!

Many of you know, but I was hesitant to post anything about it until the closing happened. Now I can officially announce that we are the country. Also known as the real Virginia. Matt is practicing his Virginia twang. We closed on Friday, but we have our condo until the beginning of May so we will be slowly moving and also doing so small projects at the new house. My biggest predicament is what to call the house on the blog. As you know I fondly refer to the condo as 709 since that's our apartment number. Well this house number is five digits (12704) which in my opinion is really over doing it. The street name (Lednock) really doesn't do the place any favors either. I'm taking suggestions.

On another note...we took a walk around the neighborhood on Friday night. We officially have the smallest cars in the neighborhood. We are also missing our 2.5 kids and our dog. Conversations overheard include: "It's so sad that you aren't listening and won't get ice cream tonight," and "Oh I love PetSmart. Which one do you take your dog to?" Suburbia.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Recipe of the Week!

Lasagna Soup

Ingredients:2 teaspoons olive oil
1 pound ground turkey
1 onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 (32-ounce) container chicken broth
1 (15-ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can petite diced tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
4 ounces broken whole-wheat lasagna noodles (about 4 noodles)
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
3 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
1/2 cup reduced-fat shredded mozzarella cheese

Directions:Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a large nonstick skillet. Add the turkey, onion, bell pepper, and garlic. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the turkey is crumbled and browned. Add all ingredients to your crock pot.

Add the broth, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, salt, and crushed red pepper to the crock pot. Allow to cook for a few hours. Add the noodles and cook until the soup thickens slightly and the noodles are tender. Stir in mozzarella, basil, and the Parmesan.

This recipe could also be done on the stovetop instead of the crock pot. 

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Bowling (No, this is not a joke).

So let's just back up to August 2012 for a minute. I get this facebook message from my coworkers asking who would be interested in joining a bowling league. I know what you are thinking - "no she did not join a bowling league." Well, yes she did. The Dream Crushers have been going strong (well mediocre, really) since August. Did you have any idea that a bowling league is 35 weeks long? Again, not joking. And the most unfunny thing about a bowling league you ask? The price. Holy Cow. Unbelievable. You really should have witnessed the Dream Crushers and Team 3 at the first bowling meeting...there was a contract, a lot of pressure, and a lot of frantic texting, and calculating. There was no way out. Trust me.

Fast forward to this week...week 26, I believe. You might think I'm an all-star bowler at this point. Wrong. Bowling is no joke. And people at the Manassas Bowl of America take bowling very seriously.  We've had to be corrected on our bowling etiquette, our picture taking, and the fact that when you get three strikes in a row it's called a turkey, not a rooster. Above you can see my mistake. You might also be able to see those fabulous bowling shoes in the Smithsonian sometime in May after we are out of our league contract. I am proud to tell you that there are a lot more roosters and strikes recorded on there at this point.

There's a lot of things I could tell you about bowling, but I want to keep this short enough so people will read it. It's been fun, but I'm pretty sure this will be my first and last season as a bowling league star wannabe...I think my teammates would agree. Cross your finger for us tonight :)

Monday, March 4, 2013

2 Broke Girls

It was the theme of the weekend. Two girls. One hundred-ish cupcakes. Maybe we could upgrade ourselves to moderate income. Maybe. Anyway, remember that one time I sort of volunteered myself (really I didn't volunteer, my counterpart did, I wanted payment) to make the Assistant Principal's wedding cupcakes? Having zero experience. Well, it happened. There's pictures to prove it. And it all went smoothly...until I figured out I forgot baking powder in one of the flavors. It was a late-ish night. We (my friend Dana and I) made three flavors: almond raspberry with champagne icing, lemon with lemon cream cheese icing, and red velvet with cream cheese icing. The almond raspberry cake and lemon cake are recipes I have posted before. You can click on them to find the recipes. Anyone want to hire we can be 2 middle class girls?