Monday, February 20, 2012

Menu Plan Monday: February 20, 2012

Whew. The last several weeks have been a whirlwind of packing, moving, cleaning, unpacking and trying to find all our stuff in its new place (where was that again?). We didn't plan much for menus--unless you count planning to fly by the seat of our pants, our energy level, our collective desire to cook, and our ability to locate the proper equipment at any given meal time. There was a *lot* of takeout and quick meals eaten at fast food establishments. But now that things are finally settling down, and into a new normal, it's time to get back to old routines. Like planning a menu and eating home-cooked food. (My gut is especially relieved to be eating something made in our own kitchen. And I will leave it at that. You're welcome.)

Monday: T has some steaks he wants to grill. I have some sour cream I wish not to go to waste. We'll have steak, a baked potato, and some steamed asparagus! It's been so long since we last had asparagus, but it should be slender and fresh this time of year. Time to take advantage!
Tuesday: T makes these foil packets for tilapia that he pops onto the grill and they are so yummy. We'll whip up a quick noodle side dish and steam up some sliced zucchini for a nice, healthy, light-on-the-tummy dinner.
Wednesday: It's Ash Wednesday, and I have church. I also have a longer drive to church, during the peak of crazy traffic, so dinner needs to be quick and simple. BLTs fit the bill.
Thursday: We'll be doing our final walk-through at the apartment and turning in our keys. We need something that can be ready quickly, because by the time we get home, we'll likely be getting grumbly tummies. And that makes both of us a little cranky. We'll grab a quick freezer meal--one of the kind with chicken and veggies and such that you toss in a pan--and have a salad with it.
Friday: Spaghetti and meatballs! Garlic bread! Salad! Mangia!
Saturday and Sunday: And here's where we will get creative. Our weekend looks to be busy. We may or may not feel like cooking much. So we are going to wing this one and see what the weekend brings. We live on the edge, I tell you.


Notes from last week's menu: Actually that is the menu from January 30. The only thing I remember about it now is that the sauce for the Brown Sugar Glazed Pork came out so well that my mouth is watering just thinking about it almost a month later!

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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

I Want Wednesday: February 15, 2012

I've been thinking about possible art for the new house, so this week is themed to art that fits the feel I Want in my home... (You know, pending T's taste as well, of course.)

**I love how serene this one is. I'm not sure where it would go though. There's no red in the master bedroom. And the grey-blue background wouldn't lend itself to the living room decor. Maybe in the guest bedroom?
"Winter Plum"



**I really like this one. It might do well in the dining room, which is actually one big room with the living room. But the living room walls are painted red and eventually I would like the dining room walls to be a warm tan, which I think would contrast well with the red. (Right now, they are just a plain "builder's white.")  At any rate, the red in this piece would be one more way that the living room and dining room can play nicely together, I think.
"Sunset Tuscany"


**Now this is closer to the master bedroom colors--soft, muted, relaxing. I actually think these two separate pieces would work well together too. But would it be weird to have wintry art up year round? In Florida? Or would it just be cozy and a nod to our northeastern roots (Connecticut for me, Pennsylvania for T)? Or should that even matter so long as *we* like it? I do know that most tropical themes just aren't my taste though...
"Outside of Bally"

"Breaking Light"


**This is a bit more abstract than I am typically drawn to but I love how warm it feels. I wonder if this would work in the living room area or if it would be too dark up against all that red? I suppose it would be another option to consider for the dining room area...
"Red Skies at Night"



**I have no idea where this would work, but gosh, I think it's pretty. It even overrules my usual aversion to tropical or beach themes.
"Seashore"


**The colors in this one just amaze me...
"Touch the Wind"


**I could see this one in either bedroom or in the living room. I look at it and feel a sense of awe and a sense of peace simultaneously. That makes me happy. This is one of my very favorite pieces that I stumbled upon.
"Sunrise in the Mountain"


**The sense of quiet motion in this one appeals to me. It makes me want to sit still and listen.
"Hymn an Autumn"


**And this is my very favorite one of all. I love that it's Autumn. And the lighter tones make me think it would do well in the living room on the dark walls without losing its warmth.
"A Secret Pond"


Just dreaming and musing. Who knows what we'll actually end up with over time...

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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

I Want Wedneday: February 1, 2012

**I Want the following for the new house!! - a washer and dryer, a couch, a dining room table with chairs, a lawn mower, and an upright freezer. The first two are the most likely to happen quickly. Followed closely by the lawn mower, since we can't be "those people" with "the yard." The rest will come in good time.

**I Want a heart-shaped donut from Dunkin. What can I say? I am a sucker for anything festive.

**I Want this book, commemorating 100 years of baseball at my beloved Fenway Park.

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Snapshot from Along the Broken Road: January 2012

A photo of me:

Not the typical photo you expect, but certainly an accurate one. In the process of growing out my hair for the first time in more than fifteen years!

1) Candle scents this month:
Christmas Wreath. Holiday Sage. Christmas at the Beach. Cherries on Snow. Holiday Bayberry. Sparkling Snow (one of my favorites!). Gingerbread. Holiday Garland. Red Berry & Cedar (another favorite!). Christmas Cookie. North Pole. White Christmas. Hazelnut Coffee. Christmas Cupcake. Balsam & Cedar. Holiday Spirit. Winterberries. Mulling Spices. Mistletoe. Boo-Nilla. Hazelnut Coffee.

2) What I am reading this month:
Love in the Time of Cholera (Gabriel Garcia Marquez).

3) Top three songs I was drawn to:
"Just a Kiss," by Lady Antebellum. "Crazy Girl," Eli Young Band. "Hold On," Michael Buble.

4) Movies I saw:
Home Alone - Just *had* to watch this one again, because it amuses me so much. Ever After - I hadn't seen this one in *forever*. Fever Pitch - Needed a Red Sox fix! The Family Stone - I'd never seen this one before, and so many people had mentioned loving it; I wanted to but there was just *so* *much* negativity in it that overshadowed any of the funnier or happier parts.

5) Favorite tv moments of the month:
Parenthood - "Just Smile": This show just gets me right here. ::pats heart:: They nailed real emotion yet again. All those things we feel in our real lives. I love that, big time. Grey's - "Suddenly": Intense, intense, intense. This was a super sad episode, but it was early-Grey's-good! Fringe - "Back to Where You've Never Been" and "Enemy of My Enemy": This was an excellent show that just got even better in these two episodes. I did not want them to end, I was so sucked in! The Firm: I started watching this mid-season start up. It hooked me right from the series premier.

6) Something yummy I made: 
The Brown Sugar Glazed Pork came out to perfection this time. I seriously wanted to soak up every last drop of that sauce. I don't know what made it so super tasty this time around, but *seriously*.

7) Restaurants where I ate:
Ling's. Harry's Seafood and Grill. Kringle. Sleepy Hollow. Bonefish Grill.

8) Five things I am loving this month:
1. Shark Steamer Mop. I *finally* don't dread mopping! (This is huge. Monumental-type huge.) 2. Our realtor. Above and beyond my expectations. (Of course, the last one set the bar so low, ants were stepping over it with ease, but that has nothing to do with the price of tea in China.) 3. The bank who is handling our mortgage application. So helpful. So happy to explain things in terms real people can understand. So on top of things. So *not* the nightmare I was warned about when it comes to banks and mortgages. 4. That the Christmas tree stays up until January 6. I like to squeeze out every last drop of Christmas. 5. My stash of Christmas candy!

9) A goal I had for this month:
Find a house already OMG! (We did!!!) (OMG!)

10) This month I looked forward to:
Getting our house purchase made an official done deal so I could finally share the news. After the pitfalls and road blocks and close calls, I started to get superstitious about telling anyone, just to have it fall through yet again. (Not by any fault of our own, but issues with banks' crazy delusions about short sales, inadequate real estate agents and sellers who are a little bit off their nut.)

11) Something I want to remember about this month:
Knowing that we had the right house this time. It was a long eighteen months coming and this one was *not* settling. It felt right.

12) A photo I took this month:

After deciding to participate in a daily photo challenge, I have a ton of photos from January, but I (inexplicably) liked this one. I still don't know why...

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