Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Pad Frai

So, the Pad Thai recipe I tried tonight was… not Pad Thai.
Not even close, really.

But it was good. It tasted like stir-fry. I’m guessing it probably took me about 45 minutes to do all this… because chopping all the veggies is time consuming (for me).

Therefore, I’m calling this a win and I’m sharing the recipe with all my alterations.
(Obviously I’ve named it “Pad Frai.”)

[con't to A Girl & Happenstance for recipe.]

Sunday, January 3, 2010

26 in 52: Problems already.

Ok, so as you know (or maybe you don't), I'm reading 26 books in 52 weeks.
My first book, which I technically started in 2009, is Say You're One of Them.

I'm trying to decide whether it's going to be worth the struggle to get through it. The stories are good and touching. Childhood in third world area is hard. The first story was about childhood prostitution and, basically, drug use to numb the pain of starving. The second story is touching on poverty and AIDS.

[continued on A Girl & Happenstance]

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Garden Eggs and Baconbuttercheese Potatoes.

We shall start with the Garden Eggs because [1] it’s a breakfast food and [2] it feeds 8 normally hungry people (or 5 very hungry ones).

You will need:

* at least 8 eggs (I used 9)
* a small container of ricotta cheese ( I believe it’s 10 or 12 oz.)
* 1/2 cup of milk
* 1/2 teaspoon of dried basil
* 1/4 teaspoon of salt
* 1/4 teaspoon of pepper (I used more… because I love pepper.)
* 10 oz. frozen spinach, thawed (If you put it in the fridge overnight it will ALMOST be thawed by morning. Easier — defrost in the microwave.)
* 1 cup of chopped tomatoes (I used three Roma tomatoes)
* 8 oz. of shredded mozzarella
* a small bunch of green onions, sliced
* 1/2 cup of salami, diced (pepperoni would be good too)

Chop veggies and crack eggs into a large mixing bowl. Add all other ingredients. Mix all together until evenly distributed. Spread the mixture into a greased 13×9 inch pan.

The recipe I followed said to bake it for 35 minutes at 325, but it was not cooked all the way through. I say set the oven at 350 and check it after 35 minutes. If the eggs look set, you’re probably baked through. To double check, insert a toothpick into the middle, if it comes out clean, remove the eggs from the oven. Allow them to sit for 10 minutes before serving.

And there you have it, eggs for 8 (or 5 very hungry people).

Now for the Baconbuttercheese Potatoes.

You will need:

* 3 lbs. of potatoes (It says peeled and diced, but if you have potatoes with a thin skin, save yourself and leave the skin on.)
* 16 oz. sour cream (Use low fat to save yourself as much guilt as possible.)
* 1/2 cup of butter, melted (This is why you should use the low fat sour cream… a stick of butter.)
* 8 oz. of shredded sharp cheddar
* 5 slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled (I used 8. We like bacon and I used low fat sour cream.)
* Optionally, you can have extra cheddar cheese for serving.

Dice potatoes and boil until mashable. Drain the water and add potatoes to a large mixing bowl. Also add sour cream, melted butter, cheese and bacon. Pour evenly into a greased 13×9 inch pan. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes. Feeds 8 people (or 5 very hungry people).

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Time is so hard to come by these days.

Hopefully I'll have time tomorrow to share two new recipes with you. One for a baked omelet, one for a mashed 'tater casserole.

Crossing my fingers.

Saturday, December 19, 2009


It was nice to be on blogger for a while, but I'm moving on to Wordpress. It's a bit more user friendly and has more options, should I ever want to have my own domain and fight with CSS code to create my own design.

It also has the nice option to password protect certain entries. I like that.

You can find me here. So I'm definitely not disappearing. Just add me to your bookmarks, follow me, RSS feed me, whatever. I'd love to have actual readers.

I'll be cross posting for a little while to make the "transition" smoother in case anyone actually DOES read this stuff.

Long and rambling, but possibly worth your time? Maybe not, but you won't know until you read it.

There are times when I think, "You know, it could be easier. Maybe even better. Who knows."
But I've always hesitated because it wasn't my style. To give up on something just because it's a little more difficult. There are bound to be snags along any way.

I've never been afraid of difficulty. Utter boredom, yes. Settling, yes. Meaninglessness, yesyesyes.
But never difficulty.

Sometimes though, difficulty reaches a point where you do get bored with it. It doesn't become a learning curve, it becomes something to deal with. Something that slowly loses meaning. Something that becomes your life.

There are a few things on my mind. Work is one. Love is another.

Work is work. I love my coworkers and there are days when I love my job. I have quite a few customers that make me smile. But there is also a visible side of humanity that is arrogant, rude and deceitful. I could do without that. (So, people, please stop lying. Don't be a douchebag.)

Of course, I also need a vacation. Maybe my mini day off will help a little.

Taking classes towards Art History would be fun. As soon as I get my taxes done, I'm going to go online and use that FAFSA4caster tool to see a round-about guess at how much financial aid I could get. Hopefully it'll work. I cannot afford to take on any large sums of debt, even if it is for education. Especially because I'm not sure I'll even end up using the degree in any big capacity.

Art Ed would be cool, but that kind of thing is being fazed out too. Because art's important, but it's not math or science... even though it can be linked TO math and science. Funny how all the subjects they teach in high school are inextricably linked together.

Besides, no one would ever pay for an art tutor at this point.

Sorry, tangent. (Cosine and sine.)

And love. Ah, love. That filthy son-of-a-bitch that keeps chipping away at my mental state. Word to the wise, don't try to make sense of anything. Love is ridiculous. There is no sense in it. It's that word we give to the undeniable urge to make babies and carry on the human race. A human race that we humans will probably destroy on our own because we can't stop fighting. Because, you see, we don't actually believe in love. We like to think the concept is nice.

Except that I do believe in it and I actually do live it. I hold no ill feelings towards anyone in my life (save one person, but she doesn't count because she is the scum of the earth and the opposite of all things lovely). I give up things and feelings I like for the people I love.

Love is wearing me down. Well, the lack of actual physical touch by love. All I've got are words. Words that can build or break an entire empire, I believe.

Physical touch, I've got none of that. Not since Eric left, at least. He was the last person I touched (outside of family) that I could honestly say I loved. And yes, the touching went from sexual to friendly to cop-a-feel to friendly again (haha)... but I know he cared a lot about me. Actually, he cares about a lot of people... his hugs made me feel protected.

Words. Words. Words. That's what I've got now. It was nice to have Eric around because he gave me more than words, even if it wasn't a lover-relationship, it was meaningful. All was good.

"Meaningful" is pretty necessary in my life. Everything I do has meaning. I require it. What is worth doing if it doesn't mean something to you deep in your soul? Life is so short. The earth has been around for approximately 4.5 billion years. We live on it for 100 years, if you're lucky enough to get old. That's a ratio of 1:45,000,000.

That's pretty pathetically short. And if I live to be 100, I've already used up almost a quarter of my time. I might be lucky to see 80 considering the cancer that runs on my dad's side. So really, I've used up 30% of my allotted time. What if I don't even live that long? What if I die tragically young? That kind of thing happens. (Though I can honestly say I'm going to do everything in my power to stop it from happening to me.)

So why should I purposely waste my time? Everything needs to have meaning. Eric was my partner in crime. (Something I ultimately want in a lover-relationship.) Even if we were just watching a movie, it was meaningful because he is awesome.

I also know I want someone who's willing to compromise with me. I'll give up a little if they give up a little and, in the end, it will work out even better than either of us expected. That sort of thing. I want to spend my remaining days on earth not settling for less. I want to be a partner in crime and I want to see places I only dreamed about. I want to be something better. I want to make someone else stronger. I want to shape minds. I want to be a foundation. A steady rock for someone.

But I need that in return too.
I'm ready for that. And I guess when it's ready for me, it will actually find me, hold me and keep me warm.
Until then, I have words. I'll use my flannel PJs and sweatshirts to keep me warm. And I'll hold myself.
I'll make due. Because I can. Because I'm complete on my own.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to look up art classes because they'd make me feel more enriched than anything else.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

What I've been up to lately.

I realize it's been a while.

Friday night, Dane Cook::

Allison (my current partner in crime) and I went to see Dane. Yes. We're on a first name basis now, ok? It was a blasty-blast. Allison screamed obnoxiously as he came out and we laughed so hard -- even at the two opening acts, which I expected were not going to be as fun as the main act, but they were. They were great.

I can never remember their names though, damn it. One was an Al and the other a Robert.

Of course I bought a $35 t-shirt and a window cling (for each of us).

Tuesday night (aka: last night), Owl City::

The concert was good. Tweenage and teenage girls are such an annoying set though and unfortunately they made up 50% of the audience. Another 25% were their parents and the remaining were faculty and college students.

The music was good. (It was also too loud though. You know how things get real hard to understand, almost muffled, when it gets too loud. It was like that.) Adam Young (I learned his name last night, haha) is a pretty good performer, and I developed a girlcrush on the violinist. Damn, she was just adorable! The keyboardist/back-up singer too.

Actually, all the girls were cute. I wish I was any one of them.

I didn't buy anything at the show because (a) tweens and teens are annoying and (b) I'm so broke, it's sad.

Allison pointed out on girl who was applying blue chapstick to her lips for at least 5 minutes. She was hoping the girl's lips would turn blue. Sadly, they did not, but she did have a bunch of shine all up her upper lip. Shmexy.

A crappy side note::

My credit card bill is not what I'd like it to be. I ate out too much. And Christmas is a bummer. :(
Next month is a new month. It will all be ok. *sigh*

Back to the point of it::

So that's what I've been up to. I took the morning off to recuperate, though I probably wouldn't have needed to. It's nice to be laying in bed in a quiet house. Lovely. :)

I think I'll wait to do yoga until AFTER work. I'm just going to enjoy this quiet for now.

Before I go, a photo::

Allison's cell phone takes better pictures than my BB. Fail.
We're still trying to figure out how we look like sisters, if at all.


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

It's times like this that I am happy to be single.

I'm in my PJs already. It's cold outside and I'm glad to be in. I have a busy weekend coming up because it's my birthday on Sunday. I can make plans as they come, since I'm not bogged down with trying to fit a significant other into my plans.

Not that it would be TERRIBLE, I'm just glad I don't have to balance that at the moment. I'm sure my mood will change once I feel like I have more time on my hands.

Anyway, being single isn't as bad as I once thought it was.

I need a new recipe to try out. I feel stagnant. I also need to start planning my Christmas cards and my gifties. I already bought a few today off of Etsy. (Down and out Chic) I still have my dad to buy for, which will probably be the most difficult, considering he's into zero things that most dads are into (minus baseball, but I hate baseball with a fiery passion).

I wanted this Christmas to be a handmade Christmas. So I plan on making everything myself or shopping Etsy. That's why I have to plan so far in advance.

I work long days the next two days. And I can feel myself getting sick in the chest again. Maybe I need to take more meds. I hate medicating.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Simple sausage and potatoes.

Simple and tasty.

Simple sausage and potatoes
(My sister helped with this one, she suggested the addition of cumin and parsley.)

- 1 lb of hot or sweet italian sausage (turkey sausage works fine) cut into large bite-sized pieces
- 1.5 lbs small red potatoes (also cut into bite sized pieces)
- 2 red peppers (cut into thin strips)
- 1 large onion (cut into small wedges)
- drizzle of olive oil
- 1 tsp cumin
- handful of fresh chopped parsley
- salt and pepper to taste

1. Cut everything up as directed. Place the veggies and potatoes in a bowl as you go.

2. Dump veggies and potatoes into a cake pan, toss with olive oil, cumin, pepper, salt and parsley. Place sausage pieces on top.

3. Bake at 450 for 45 minutes, stirring about halfway through. (It is important that your potatoes are bite sized so they cook all the way through.)

4. Stir, serve, enjoy.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Chicken Noodle Soup

Yeah, I know... it seems really basic. But a good chicken noodle soup is a necessity.

Really Yummy Chicken Noodle Soup
(This is one of my more time consuming ones. It takes at least an hour and a half and that's if you're really skilled at tearing apart super hot chicken. I'd figure more like 2 hours.)

- 4 lbs of chicken drumsticks and thighs (skin on, bone in)
- two 32 oz boxes of chicken broth (I had this on hand, but I didn't use it all)
- 3-4 carrots
- 3-4 stalks of celery
- 1 onion
- 12 oz bag of egg noodles
- salt and pepper to taste
- love

Ok, so what you're going to do is this:

1 - Boil the chicken in water for 1 hour and 15 minutes (or until it's cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees -- meat thermometers rock). Just add enough water to cover the chicken... and part way through the boiling process, I'd recommend checking the water level. Add a cup or two halfway through the process if needed. This will create some broth. Really good broth that will be a base for the store bought stuff in boxes. Oh yeah, KEEP THE POT COVERED. Also, boiled chicken smells kind of weird when it first starts cooking.

1a - While the chicken is cooking... chop up the carrots, celery and onion. I hate chopping onion, but it must be done.

2 - When the chicken is done, remove it with a slotted spoon. Place it on a plate to cool and skim all the chicken skin/pieces out of the broth left in the pot (there will not be a LOT of liquid left and that's ok -- that's why you bought those extra boxes of broth anyway).

3 - Add about two cups of water and the store bought broth -- bring to a boil. I eyeballed it. I knew I was going to be adding the veggies and noodles, so I added enough liquid to cover all that. I don't like my soup brothy, so if you LOVE broth... add both boxes of broth.

4 - Start pulling the skin off the chicken and discard it. Your hands are about to get real greasy and disgusting. It's worth it, I promise. Pull all the chicken off the bones. This chicken will be going back in the soup in a few minutes. (Try not to cuss too much... the chicken will be hot.) Discard the bones as well, or give them to a happy puppy if you feel the need.

5 - When the broth is boiling, add the chopped up veggies. Simmer the veggies for 15 minutes. After those 15 minutes, add the noodles and cook according to package directions. Add chicken just before serving. Sprinkle in salt and pepper to taste.