Monday, February 28, 2011

What's for Dinner? 2-28-11

I haven't decided what to call this yet. Italian Gyro?  Pesto Chicken wrap? Italian-Pesto-Chicken-Gyro-Wrap?  

I think i like Italian Gyro. Because this recipe is sort of inspired by a greek gyro, but modified a bit. Here is what you'll need:
- cooked rice, about a cup. I usually would use brown rice, but this time I used white rice because it cooks faster
-Pesto, either prepared or bought (I used the bought kind). You won't need more than a tablespoon or two. I'm going to use the rest of my jar on a pasta dish later this week.
- Tyson pre-cooked and cubed roasted chicken breast
-1/4 cup onion
-  basil
- garlic powder
- Flat-out flat bread. I usually use pitas, but our Walmart sucks and did not have them. These are a good substitute to make wraps instead of pitas.
- your choice of shredded cheese (I used a 3 Cheese Italian blend)

Take your chicken cubes and put them in the crockpot. I used about half of the bag I had. Anyway, put them in there, frozen and everything. Put enough liquid to cover the bottom. Flavor with basil, garlic powder, oregano, and pepper. I just eyeball it. I know, i'm too imprecise sometimes. Also, put in your onions. Cook on high for about three hours.

 Take your flat bread and spread pesto on it. I like pesto so I used a lot. If you prefer a more mild flavor, just use as much as looks good to you.

 Put some of your chicken cubes on one end of it.
 Add some rice. This one has more on it because it's Brad's. He's a growing boy and likes rice.
 Here's what I used. Put as much cheese as you would like on it.
Roll it up and serve it! We had salads with ours. My salad was simple: romaine lettuce, cranberries, and walnut-raspberry vinaigrette. Sometimes I put apples on it too. Yum!


Friday, February 25, 2011

Style File 2/25/11

 Well! In an exciting turn of events I got a call about a job interview next tuesday! So of course now I am confronted with what to wear to it. It's an Admissions Counselor position with Regent University. I need to dress professionally, but still. I'm thinking about wearing this outfit (But I am going shopping tomorrow to see if I can find a better fitting shirt/jacket/sweater of some kind):
 I got this skirt at Salvation Army the same time I got my red boots. It's a the Limited skirt and I paid like two bucks for it. I need to take it to a dry cleaner's to be cleaned, but I like it. I can't decide if it's brown or grey, haha. It's kind of a brown-grey texture? Well it's grey enough I didn't like my opaque brown tights with it. So I think i'm going to get a more sheer brown tight, or perhaps just go with good 'ole tan panty hose for interview day. Can't go bare legged, that's for sure!
 I've had this sweater for a long time. It's Nicole Miller for JC Penney.
 Red shirt came from JC Penney a long time ago too.
 Belt: Came with some pants from H and M
You've seen my spectacular brown shoes before. :)
Pearl set from my darling husband. I love these pearls. Whenever I wear them I feel all sophisticated and stuff. :)

So what do you think? Should I try again for an different job interview outfit? I want to look professional, but not super super lawyery, haha. I do like this outfit, but I don't particularly like the fit of the shirt or sweater, I think it looks a little big on me. I'm going out with a friend tomorrow, so I think I might look for a better button down shirt. I'm thinking something teal or green. We'll see what I can find!

Other than that, no exciting news here! Just looking for a job and scrapbooking. I've been reading a collection of Leo Tolstoy's short stories and I've really been enjoying them. I just love Tolstoy. I'm not even sure why, I just do! Have you read anything good lately?

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Scrappy Wednesday 1-23-11

 Ok, story time! (Explained more briefly in the journaling that you can't read on the page) I took lots of fun pictures of our moving process. I had pictures of all the boxes stacked up in our small dining room, I had pictures of people helping us pack up, I had a picture of the moving truck pulling the escape, I had pictures of the new apartment with boxes everywhere. BUT as I was transferring them from the memory card to my computer, in the space of about a milisecond, all got selected then deleted. And I definitely didn't do it! I was so very very sad. Anyway, now I only have one picture from one of the people who helped us move, and it's on this first page. I also put in pictures of how we got the new apartment set up.

The moral of the story is to be careful when transferring pictures from memory card to computer. Hope you don't have any disasters like that!

Monday, February 21, 2011

What's for Dinner? 2/21/11

 Breakfast is what's for dinner! Brad and I eat breakfast for dinner a couple times a month. We just like it. Sometimes we do pancakes and eggs. Sometimes I do sausage biscuits. Sometimes I do bacon and eggs. This time I made bacon, eggs, and biscuits.  Here's the recipe I used to make the biscuits (adapted from Alton Brown on Food Network). I actually halved the recipe to make only four biscuits but here's the whole thing.

Southern Biscuits                        
2 cups
Flour (either all purpose, or half whole wheat and all purpose. I used half whole wheat)
 4 tsp
Baking powder 
1/4 tsp baking soda
¾ tsp
2 tbsp
2 tbsp
Shortening (sometimes I just use 4 tbsp butter because I don't keep shortening around)
1 cup
buttermilk (I usually just "make" this by putting vinegar in the milk. But often I just use regular milk because I don't have vinegar on hand)

 Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. Dump in your flour....

 Salt, baking soda and baking powder (which is not the same as baking soda. I accidently put 2 tsp baking soda in this batch and had to scoop it out) and mix it up a bit.
Chunk up your butter and shortening (I just used butter this time) like so and throw it into the mixture.
 This is the fun part. With your bare (clean) hands rub the butter into the flour mixture until it looks like crumbs.
 Make a well in the center of the butter/flour mixture and put in your (butter)milk. Try to work quickly because you want your butter and milk to remain cold. The colder the fats are when you put them in the oven the flakier and more yummy they will be. Mix together the milk and butter until it just comes together. The dough will be incredibly sticky and that's ok.
 Dump the dough out onto a floured surface. I got a little flour crazy. Please use less when you make them. Knead the dough on itself a couple times.
 Pat the dough into a 1in thick round. Cut out the biscuits. I used a cookie cutter, but you can use a drinking glass or a real biscuit cutter.
 I grease the cookie sheet because I'm paranoid about the bottoms sticking to the sheet. Put them on the sheet so they're just touching. Pop them into the oven for 15 minutes or until the tops are golden brown.
Now onto the rest of breakfast! I used to hardly ever make bacon because you have to pay attention it very closely, which makes it hard to get the rest of a breakfast meal done. So my solution? Bacon goes in the oven. Just throw the bacon on a cookie sheet (with a lip because bacon gets really greasy) and put it in the oven until your desired crispiness is achieved.
I scrambled three eggs for Brad (I wasn't feeling eggs last night. So I had something else instead). Anyway, put your three eggs into some sort of receptacle and add a tablespoon of milk. Using a wisk or fork mix it all up so they're scrambled!

 Dump them in a cold pan and cook them. I spray my pan first because we don't have non-stick pans.
 The finished product! Yum!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Style File 2-18-11

It was a beautiful day on Thursday so I ventured out to Mount Trashmore to take some pictures. I took these at 10:30, but the lighting was still a little bright. Next time I'll have to head out earlier or something. Anyway, forgive me for being squinty, but be proud of me for venturing out into a public place, haha.

 I just got these jeans about a month ago. I needed some jeans that fit me properly that were not skinny jeans. I love my skinnies but I also love a classic boot cut jean. So here's what I ended up with!
 I hope you recognize the red boots as the ones I got from Salvation Army. Told you I would feature them in a style file soon! I had my hair all curly, but it was a bit windy so it didn't last long. I'll have to re-do that hair style for a less windy day.

 And I thought I would show you the back of my vest. It's lace! I love it. Also love the pockets on the jeans. I love button-flap pockets. :)
 I have to say I love this outfit because it's comfortable. Cotton white tee shirt, jeans, and the vest. I think it looks put together, but it's incredibly comfortable. Throw in some red necklaces (which I've had for approximately forever) and

 And.... I GOT NEW GLASSES. They're dark brown, and I love them a lot. They're very similar to my old glasses, except these are plastic instead of metal. And they're brown and aqua instead of brown and pink.

So there you have it! This week I signed up for my first race ever. I'm running in the Towne Bank 8k  on March 19th. So I'm training for that right now! Yesterday I ran outside for the first time in a very long time to see what I needed to work on. I did a 5k about two minutes slower than my normal time, so my goal is to work on pacing. I think I need to get some upbeat music to keep me on pace. I really did notice that if the music was faster I ran faster... that doesn't matter so much on a treadmill because it keeps the pace for you! Tuesday I ran four miles on the treadmill so now my goal is to work up to five miles (aka: 8K). I can do it! At least that's what I keep telling myself. I'm also looking for real running gear. I don't want to run the race in a t-shirt and hand-me-down shorts from Brad. Maybe I'll do a Race Day style file for you. ;)

Have a great Friday!

 T-shirt: GAP perfect fit tee
Red Necklaces: Claire's circa 2004
Vest: Forever 21
Jeans: Levi's 515 (kohl's I believe)
Boots: Thrifted

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Scrappy Wednesday 2-16-11

 In honor of it recently being Valentine's day, I thought I would post the page I made for Valentine's day 2010. I recently went back and did this page because I realized I didn't have any valentine's day photos. Brad and I usually keep it pretty low key. This year he made me my favorite soup (Chicken Tortilla Soup) and baked an Apple pie all by himself. So of course i had to document it! 

 I think you're starting to notice a pattern here... I make most of the page elements on my cricut. LOL. I liked doing this one because I used the patterned papers and went a little wild this time. Normally I do patterned background, solid mats/other elements. But not this time. Aren't I just wild? HAHA.
 I cut these circles and put different hearts on them to make it more valentiney. I liked the result.
And lastly to make it truly valentiney, I asked "Will you be mine?"

As a bonus this week here are pictures of my new organizational system. I mentioned earlier this week that I  went to Michael's on a whim and discovered JetMaxx storage cubes were 40% off. So I bought three of them. As I was getting all my stuff in the cubes, I realized I would need a fourth, so I ran to Micheal's this afternoon and picked up the fourth one. Here's how I have mine for right now. The nice thing about this system is that it's pretty much completely customizable. If someday I get a bigger room, I can even create a table top out of them or add more cubes. They're stinking awesome and at a good price. I also got those three photo boxes for five bucks (as in all three of them cost a total of 5 dollars). In one I have my cricut cartridges, in another extra photos that didn't make it into the scrapbook, and the other has random odds and ends that needed a home. I cannot tell you how stinking excited I am to be able to have my stuff out like this. It makes it more accessible and makes me much more apt to scrapbook when I only have an hour or two. It really takes a lot of time gettin gall my stuff out of the big tub. NO MORE TUB YAY!

Happy (belated) Valentine's day! I hope you can find creative ways to scrap your Valentine's day!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Valentine's Day!

Well folks, just thought I would tell you what the Boyce's did for V-day and how everything turned out.

I made raviolis from scratch. They tasted ok, but they LOOKED like a disaster. Many of them got holes in them so lots of the filling came out during cooking. The pot looked pretty disgusting. Overall, they tasted ok with a bit of a squishy center because the water got into it. But I think i've decided the home made pasta isn't so much better that I'm going to quit buying it. It was a long process making and maybe I would have enjoyed it more if I had a pasta press... but I think I'm going to stick with frozen ravioli next time.

The Lava Cakes were also quite tasty! They were also a bit of a process, one that I think was worth it, but not on a very regular basis. I used a recipe from The Joy of Baking's web site. You have to separate and whip up eggs and use them at different times. Essentially what you're creating is a custard that bakes up a bit. So it was good, but it time consuming and if you do the eggs wrong I guess there's a bit of a margin for error. I'll probably make them again for a special occasion. :)

Reviews aside, our dinner was quite nice. Brad and I didn't do gifts or anything this year, so I just cooked a good meal, a yummy dessert, and set up a romantic dinner. I did dress up a bit to make the occasion a little more special. I put up candles in our living room and we had a "picnic" around the coffee table. It was fun for a bit of a change of scenery. Then we ate our ravioli and sipped our Barefoot Merlot that paired quite nicely with "red sauced pastas" (as the back of the bottle suggested). Then let the dog out of the kennel (or else she would have been all up in our food) and chatted for a bit before I put dessert in the oven. We ended up going to bed quite early (9pm) because Brad was super tired. I guess it's allowed since for the last couple weeks he hasn't been getting to sleep until 10:30 and that makes for a short night when you're waking up at 5:15 am. It was a nice Valentine's day for sure! Sorry there are no pictures. I totally forgot to take some. :(

Oh, Brad also got me a box of chocolates that he left for me to find when I woke up yesterday morning. I ate some with my breakfast. Haha.

Totally unrelated, yesterday I went to Michael's on a whim and they were having a scrapbooking storage sale. I got a bunch of JetMaxx storage cubes for 40% off! So I spent the rest of my Christmas money (yes, I still have some that I've been unsure of what to buy with it. I wanted to not buy clothes for once) on them. I got three cubes. I think next month with my Fun Money I am going to buy a fourth. As soon as I get my stuff all organized into it (yesterday I spent the afternoon putting it all together) I'll take a picture and show you! I'm so excited. Currently all my scrapbooking stuff is just thrown into a storage tub that I lug around when I need it. Not too accessible, that's for sure!

One last thing. Today is my parents 25th Wedding anniversary. I had wanted to throw them a big party, but that it didn't workout because I live so far away and my brother is a wee lad of only 16. I guess we'll have to catch the next one! Anyway, I just wanted to say that I'm very happy for you two. Not many of my friends can say that their parents are even still together, let alone celebrating their 25th anniversary. As a child it never once crossed my mind that you were going to split up, and I think that attests to the strength of your relationship. You modeled a healthy relationship for me and I'm glad I had that influence in my life. Happy Anniversary, and here's to many more years! :)

Monday, February 14, 2011

What's for Dinner? 2/14/11

 Savory Chicken and Wild rice is what's for dinner! I got the recipe from . It was really quite tasty, I did tweak it a bit. If you make the recipe as is, each serving is 240 calories and they say it should feed four people. I disagree. Brad and I polished off the whole skillet and probably could have eaten a little more on a normal night (we had a pretty big lunch). BUT even if you eat two servings that's only 480 calories, which is quite respectable for a meal. Or you could serve this as a side dish to a hearty salad or something to make it more of a meal if you're serving it to four people. Anyway, on with the recipe!!! As always, I'll show you what the recipe called for and how I tweak it. Now that I think about it, I hardly ever just make a recipe as is. I pretty much always tweak it. Sometimes I *might* make it as is once, but then I'll almost always change it somehow. I'm not sure why I do that. I guess I just think I can improve it?

1lb boneless skinless chicken breast halves, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 1/2cups sliced fresh mushrooms (4 oz)
1cup baby-cut carrots
1 2/3  cups water
1package (4.3 oz) long grain and wild rice mix with herbs

 Here's what I used. I could have used more chicken, but I'm cheap so I only used one (large) chicken breast. I used Rice a Roni wild rice which is packaged in 4.2oz instead of 4.3oz, but you know that missing .1 of an oz isn't going to kill the recipe. Instead of water, I used chicken broth because I had some in my fridge and it needed to get used up. Also, I left out the mushrooms because I think they are vile.
 Cube up your cooked chicken. I just used the skillet I cooked the chicken in to make the rest of the meal. If you haven't already noticed, I'm a fan of one pot/pan meals, for a couple reasons. First, I hate doing dishes. The less dishes I use, the faster clean up is. Second, we eat a lot of chicken. I'm at the point where I don't really like to eat *just* a cooked chicken breast with a few sides; I'm really that sick of it. In fact, when I cook chicken and a couple sides (usually broccoli or peas with sweet potato oven fries) I will usually only make Brad one and then find something else for myself. So i've been on a quest for recipes that have chicken in them, but not just by itself so I can eat it. Keeps it interesting, you know!
 Ok, so after the chicken throw in your carrots. I halved my carrots. I honestly don't like cooked carrots (texture, I think) but these don't get too mushy. They stay a bit crunchy. Still not my favorite, but they were good in this dish. In the future, i think I might also add some peas to give it a little greenery. I think that would be quite a nice addition to this recipe.
 Then dump in the box of rice...
 And the herb packet that has the special herbs and the "wild" part of the "long grain and wild rice".
Then add in the water or chicken broth. Bring it to a good boil, cover it, turn down the heat, and let it simmer for about 15 minutes. Uncover it, stir it up, and let it simmer with the lid off until the liquid is pretty much soaked up. Serve it up and eat it!

Just as a little fun update I thought I would tell you that I attempted making home made ravioli yesterday. It was very very tiring. I just rolled out the dough and filled it. I'm going to cook them for dinner tonight as our Valentine's day thing. I didn't take picture of me making them, but I might post a picture or two of the finished product. It was a process because I don't have a pasta press, just my two little hands and a rolling pin. But I think it's going to pay off. They look quite yummy! I'll be sure to let you know how it goes. I'm also making home made lava cakes for dessert. I AM SO EXCITED ABOUT THESE. What are you lovies doing for valentines day? Staying in and cooking or going out?


Friday, February 11, 2011

Style File Friday 2-11-11

As promised to some on my facebook here is the dress I picked up at Salvation Army last week for a whopping FIVE bucks. I just love the color of it too. It's a happy fuschia color. I think fuschia would be what it's called. It's a pinky-purple, that's for sure. Because it's cold I paired it with a brown sweater, brown pumps, and brown tights. For some reason they look more black in these photos, but I promise you, it's all brown.

 Here's one without the sweater. Just to show of the dress. :)

 Ok, these shoes were also a steal. I got them at JC Penney's on Superbowl sunday. They were crazy discounted. They're leather and super comfy. They were originally $70.00, but they were selling them for 13.50. And I had 10 dollars in rewards, so I think I paid three bucks for these bad boys. I love them. :)

So, outfit aside, on Wednesday night we got 4 inches of snow! They canceled school on Thursday which also meant my eye appointment for Thursday got canceled.  I was kind of sad because I didn't get to pick out new glasses, but that's ok because they're working me in today. Hopefully soon I will get new glasses! Yay!

I've also been applying to lots of jobs this week. Mostly reception work, but also a couple big girl jobs. I applied for a couple positions at Regent University, of of which is an Admissions Counselor job. I really hope I at least get an interview for the job because that would be awesome. If I work full time at Regent, I can basically take classes for free. So if I got a job there, I would most like take a class at a time and plod through a master's program. It would take longer but at least I would get school in for free! I'm really hoping I get it. Not only because of the tuition perk, but because I think it would be awesome to be an Admissions Counselor.The other job I applied for there is an academic advisor position. That would be a lot of fun too, I think. So I'm hoping something comes of all my applying. I've seriously sent out probably 25 resumes in three days. I think I've decided that if I don't get into William and Mary, I'm just going to work full time and take one class at a time. We really need to pay down some debt and me having a full time job would contribute to that immensly. 

Anyway, I hope you all have a great Valentine's day weekend. Don't eat too much chocolate!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Scrappy Wednesday 2-9-11

 These are from the actual day of graduation. Most of them are after pics... but there is exactly one of me getting my diploma. I put the program on the page with photo squares so I could, in theory, take it out and flip through it if I so chose. I really enjoy the picture on the bottom right of Brad and I on this page.
 We took so may shots of us throwing our hats. The wind kept catching them and blowing them away.
All the flowers and letters were done with my cricuit. You can't really see it too well in these pics, but the corners of the pictures are punched with a fancy corner puncher thing so they're all cool and stuff. The last one didn't photograph as well because I photographed them in the evening with yellow light (no natural light because it was dark :( ) But it works! Enjoy! :)