Friday, October 22, 2010

Friday Favorites: Allisa Jacobs Etsy Shop

If you were wondering where I got those cutesy bridesmaid's make-up bags from, I had them custom made from one of my favorite Etsy shops, AllisaJacobs. She makes the most adorable pouches, purses, wallets, and baby stuff! I stuffed the bags with goodies like lipgloss, underwear, nail polish, sweet hair pins from another Etsy shop, and more! I loved spoiling my wonderful maids.

What's your favorite Etsy shop??

Friday, October 15, 2010

Friday Favorites: My Billy

Since Friday is my favorite day of the week, I thought I would start a new feature of this blog called, Friday Favorites! I will be sharing some of my favorite things like my favorite place to shop online or my new favorite music.

Today, I start with my favorite person: BILLY!

Five reasons why I love my sweet husband:
  1. He writes letters. Instead of sending a generic thank-you card for our wedding gifts (like I did!), he gave each of his family and friends a personalized letter.
  2. He talks on the phone to my grandma, and she is smitten with him.
  3. He makes me laugh uncontrollably when he kisses my neck because his beard is scratchy and it tickles me.
  4. He loves wearing his wedding ring and always keeps it in a safe place when he has to take it off.
  5. He always thanks me for making him dinner, even if it is just a boring can of soup.

Who's your favorite person and why?

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Mango-Avocado Salad, Dwight Style

I finally got around to making the recipe from the last posting from Fresh365Online. If you know me, or have read this blog, you probably realize by now that I NEVER follow recipes exactly and this was no exception. So, let's call this new recipe, Mango-Spinach Salad. I also added chicken, and white rice, and I didn't have any cilantro (although, I almost went to the store JUST for that but I am glad I didn't because it was fine without it!) and I used some other substitutions. See below!

A handfull of spinach, chopped
1 mango, sliced into small cubes
1 avocado sliced into small cubes
1 can of black beans drained and washed
1 baked chicken breast (seasoned with salt and pepper) and cut up into bitesize pieces
I used a pepper from our garden rather than a jalapeno pepper. I'm not sure what type it was, but it was a sweet pepper, similiar to a banana pepper. Anyway, I used one of these, remove the seeds and dice.
1 T Lemon juice from a lemon
1 t sugar
2 T olive oil
black pepper to taste
salt to taste
cooked white rice

In a bowl, combine spinach, mango, pepper, black pepper, a dash of salt, half of the lemon juice. Mix together. Gently add avocado.

In another bowl, mix up the sugar, rest of the lemon juice, a little bit of black pepper, and olive oil. Add the beans to this mixture and coat well.

To serve, put white rice in the bottom of dish, add black bean mix on top, add chicken pieces, add spinach-mango mixture on top and garnish with fresh black pepper.

Steve calls this meal a hit!

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Mango-Avocado Salad

My friend Heather, posted this recipe on her blog today and it made my mouth water! I am going to try it this week! YUM! See original post from Fresh365 Online.


Mango-Avocado Salad with Black Beans and Lime Vinaigrette

adapted from Whole Foods . serves 4
2 ripe avocados, peeled and cut into 1/2″ cubes
3 T lime juice
1 ripe mango, peeled and cut into 1/2″ cubes
1 jalapeño, seeded and minced
1 t grated lime zest
1/2 t salt
1/4 t sugar (or agave nectar)
2 T chopped cilantro, plus more for garnish
4 T olive oil
1 15.5-oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
black pepper, to taste

In a medium bowl, toss mango and jalapeño with 1 T lime juice and salt. Add avocado and gently toss to combine. In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining lime juice, zest, sugar, cilantro and oil. Toss the black beans with the vinaigrette. To assemble, spoon the black beans with vinaigrette into the center of a serving platter. Top with the mango-avocado mixture. Garnish with chopped cilantro and black pepper.

Monday, October 04, 2010

Anniversary Celebration

Earlier this summer, we celebrated our 2 month anniversary with Jillian and Chris, which just so happened to be their 4 year anniversary! ;) We were visiting them for a night in Vacaville and celebrated by going to a really hip tapas restaurant in Winters. We tried so many different dishes - steak skewers, tacos, bread and cheese, sliders, chicken, stuffed bell pepper, and on and that with a huge glass of sangria to help us cool off in the 100+ degree summer evening. It was the perfect dinner with amazing company. 

After dinner, we stopped off at the Nugget Market to pick up some desserts to go with a special anniversary champagne toast!! Guess who's dessert is whos and I will give you twenty bucks.

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Pretty Lady

While visiting my friend Joanna in Santa Monica last weekend, we went to a rooftop bar called Shangri-La. As we were at the bar perusing the drink menu, this rather drunk girl couldn't stop cheering about a drink that the bartender made her that was "the best drink ever!" (and she is hard to please!) So, we asked the bartender what drink it was and he said it's called, "Pretty Lady" with champagne, vodka, fresh basil leaves, strawberries, and "love". So, we tried it, and although it may not have been the best drink we ever had, it was pink and made with LOVE. Heaven!

Shane got a rather spicy drink that burned his lips (YUCK), and Jo is drinking the Pretty Lady.

Saturday, October 02, 2010

Quick Biscuits

One of my favorite little additions to a meal is (semi)homemade biscuits. I use a recipe out of my Bisquick Cookbook that Steve's mom got me for my birthday last year. It is a great cookbook to go along with a Costco size box of Bisquick.

Tonight I made the bisquick biscuits to go along with a salad for dinner. They take about 5 minutes to prepare and 10 minutes to bake, so they are the perfect quick addition to any meal to give it that special cozy touch!

2 cups Original Bisquick mix
1/2 cup shredded Italian five-cheese blend (I use whatever cheese I have on hand)
2/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon dried rosemary leaves, crushed (I used fresh rosemary from our garden and chopped up the leaves)
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  1. Heat oven to 450F. In a medium bowl, stir Bisquick mix, cheese, milk, and 1/2 teaspoon of rosemary until soft dough forms. On ungreased cookie sheet, drop dough by the spoonfull.
  2. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown. In a small bowl, mix butter, garlic powder, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon rosemary. Brush over warm biscuits. (I left out this last step and the biscuits still tasted quite good!)

Blue Jean Baby

My friend Joanna recently moved to Santa Monica so I spent last weekend romping around her new home! I brought my cruiser and we rode from the Santa Monica pier to Venice Beach. The bike path along the beach is awesome. There were so many people enjoying the sunny day, walking, running, bike riding, and rollerblading. I was so happy to be perched on my lovely little bike again, letting my hair blow in the breeze, and breathing in the salty air. We had lunch at Cabo Cantina and then toured around Venice Beach. If you've never been to Venice Beach, I suggest you go! It is one of the most interesting places I've ever been to. There are street performers, tattoo and piercing parlors, cheap sunglass stands every few yards, musicians, freaks, crafts, botox at the beach, and marijuana dispensaries. The best word to describe Venice Beach is CRAZY

We went to a rooftop bar called Shangri-La. It had a fire pit, cushy chairs, yummy martinis, and  spectacular views. It was the perfect weekend to visit Santa Monica because they were putting on a huge night-time art show called, Glow. The beach was covered with people and there were art installations spread out over the beach, pier, sidewalks, and streets. We watched acrobats dressed in glow-in-the-dark outfits, and karaoke by "moonlight". The ferris wheel was covered in pretty lights, the exercise rings were lined with green glow tape, and huge globes marked each art exhibit like beacons guiding our way. We finished off the night with a burger and fish and chips on the pier. YUM! 

I was able to go to Joanna's new workplace - Equinox gym. This is a gym where CELEBRITIES go. It was the fanciest gym I had ever been to. The elliptical had a built in tv, the machines were smooth and easy to use, but the best part about the gym was the locker room! They had Kiehls products in the showers, towels, razor blades, hair dryers, gorgeous tile and state-of-the-art shower heads. I loved every second getting ready in that locker room after my workout. 

Joanna is very lucky to live in such a fun place. And I am lucky that I have a cool place to visit when I need a weekend away. I look forward to more bike rides, shopping, and people watching. Cheers Joanna! Thank you for a very memorable and exciting weekend!

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