Monday, May 31, 2010

Apple Pie Minis

This is one of the easiest recipes ever, and yet it is so super adorable and delicious that it makes you look oh, so brilliant!

2 granny smith apples
1 1/2 Tbsp flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
pinch of salt
1 egg
refrigerated pie crust, room temp

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Peel and cut the apples into small cubes. Add the sugar, flour, salt and cinnamon. Mix together and set aside.

Flour your countertop and roll out the dough. I had a a 3 1/2" cookie cutter that was a perfect size, but really any shape or size would work. Hearts would be cute, huh? You'll need two for each pie.

Place some of the apple mixture in the center of half of the cutouts. It's tempting to put a lot, but you have to control yourself or the top won't fit.

Beat the egg with a little water to make an egg wash. Using your finger put a little wash around the edge of the bottom circle of dough. Put the top layer of dough on each little pie and crimp the edges with a fork to seal.

Use a pastry brush to egg wash the tops.

Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.

Serve warm with ice cream (it's a must)!


Friday, May 28, 2010

Craft Room Update

I saw this adorable idea on a website ages ago and finally got around to doing it. I love, love, love patterned paper but sometimes I love it so much I can't stand to cut it up, which I know is ridiculous. I thought this idea to put it in embroidery hoops and use it as wall art was perfect for me!

Here's a little peek inside my craft room. It's nothing special, but it's my own private place to create, be messy and listen to Angie music. It's one of my favorite places to go. The decor is a work in progess as I find new ideas that I like (and actually get around to doing).

Did you notice the "Angie" on the shelf? Today I came home to find that someone had changed it...

Some people have beautiful, touching, heartfelt pet names. Jim likes to think outside the box, but it always has to rhyme with Angela (ie Turdela, Dorkela, Nerdela, etc). How sweet.

Actually, this room was still unfinished until recently. Jim surprised me by finishing all the trim work while I was away on a trip. And that really is sweet!


Monday, May 24, 2010

Eggs Benedict

Ingredients for Eggs Benedict:
Hollandaise Sauce (see below)
Canadian bacon
English muffin
3 Tbsp vinegar

Ingredients for Hollandaise Sauce:
3 egg yolks
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 cup butter

I will admit that Eggs Benedict are a little tricky. Each component is actually really easy, it's just that it all has to be done at the same time so that you don't have parts that are cold.

First, a little prep work. Preheat your oven broiler. Fill a deep skillet halfway up with water, add the vinegar and bring to a boil. You want it to be a soft boil which was about medium - medium high on my stove. The eggs won't taste like vinegar, it just helps them solidify quickly.

Place the 3 eggs yolks, lemon juice and cayenne pepper in a small blender.

Alright, here we go. Ready?

Place the english muffins and canadian bacon under the broiler. Don't forget about them! I did exactly that and burned my first batch.

Gently crack 4 eggs into the boiling water, one at a time. Set your timer for 3 minutes.

Melt the stick of butter in a glass measuring cup for 30 seconds. Stir and melt another 30 seconds. The butter has to be very hot when you add it to the egg yolks because this is what cooks them. Turn your blender on continual low speed and very slowly add the melted butter in a steady stream. The sauce should immediately thicken and turn a light yellow color.

At this time your eggs should be done. You want the whites to be done, but the yolks to still be runny. If you aren't sure, poke at them with your finger and you'll be able to tell if they need to go back in for a little bit. Scoop them out and place on a paper towel to drain.

Pull the (hopefully not burned) muffins and bacon out of the oven and build this sucker.

These babies are totally worth the trouble. TOTALLY!


My Life on May 24, 2010

Outside my window... It is sunny and beautiful, but still quite cool at 35 degrees.

I am thinking... I would really like to buy a patio table and set up a cook station outside on our deck this summer.

I am thankful for... Perfect temperatures. It has been cool and beautiful here in Washington. Dad says the almanac is predicting cooler temps for the Northwest this summer which would be blissful since the crazy fools up here think air conditioning isn’t necessary to put in homes.

I am wearing.... Long Sleeve T-shirt and yoga pants.

I am creating... I will be completing a super easy and cute decorating idea for my craft room today. I'll post it in a day or two.

I am going... To Idaho Falls, ID tomorrow. One of my very favorite markets to visit.

I am reading... Fitness magazines lately. I’m hoping for the miracle of fitness by osmosis.

I am hearing... The TV turned down really low because Jim is still asleep.

On my mind... We recorded Breaking Bad lastnight and I can’t wait to watch it. I LOOOOOOVE that show! One of my managers told me to just go buy season one and I wouldn’t regret it. We did, and loved it immediately. We pretty much watched it nonstop and promptly bought season two. Seriously, go get it!

From the kitchen... Tonight I am making a crockpot concoction involving chicken. Lastnight I made some delicious Eggs Benedict which I plan on posting when I have more time later.

One of my favorite things... Myoplex Lite in chocolate only. (See picture on Stinky Saturday) As far as meal replacements go, this stuff is the bomb. Totally filling and delish.

The rest of the week... Idaho Falls, ID and then, um, I don’t remember. Somewhere else.

Pondering these words...
“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
-Maya Angelou

A picture to share...

It's been a while since I mentioned our neighbors. This is Neil, or "Mr. Spiffits" as Jim calls him. He is a super nice guy, but he is incredibly fussy. I took this picture because Neil washes his cars like 3 times a week no matter what. On this day he was washing them just as the rain was coming in. He also waters his lawn on rainy days. Silly neighbor.


Saturday, May 22, 2010

A Stinky Saturday

Today was a little on the sucktastic side.

It all started when I realized that for the second time in 4 years, I forgot to pack my makeup. Normally I wouldn't be so uptight about it. I mean, its not like I get all glammed up for these trips. But, as you are all aware, my face requires coverage right now. It is getting a little better. I've graduated from meth addict to facial chicken pox. It's quite becoming. Anyway, I went to Target lastnight, where they (of course) did not have what I was looking for, so I bought something that looked similar. Then this morning I tried the mystery product and nothing. I looked the same. So I put on more. And more. And more. Needless to say, I had to go back to Target for something with a little more oomph.

Finally, me and my heavily caked face made it to the store where they had these....

Normally I would be thrilled and tear right in, however, I have been faithfully restricting my caloric intake to 800 - 1000 per day for the last week.

Whoa, Whoa, Whoa!!!! Hold it right there.

Before you all start preaching about the need to eat healthy and not crash diet or starve myself, let me explain. I am going on a cruise to the Bahamas in 3 weeks where I will undoubtedly be wearing a swimsuit. This is a work trip (kind of), so I will be around people I work with, which I find very freaky and uncomfortable. You would do the same, don't deny it.

After the run-in with the donuts, I was excited to have an early trip home. That excitement lasted right up until the moment that they announced over the intercom that our flight had mechanical issues. My flight out of Great Falls, MT was delayed just enough that I missed my flight home by 15 minutes. Not that hanging out at SLC airport on a Saturday for 5 hours isn't cool. Who wouldn't want to do that?

Wow. I'm sounding cranky (it's past my bedtime and I'm hungry. Stupid donut pictures).

The good news is I had time to make a killer playlist which will be added to my blog sometime tomorrow.

Now I gotta go wash this cheap makeup off of my alligator face.


Friday, May 21, 2010

#31 - Check

The 2010 List is slowly but surely getting done. We finally ate at The Melting Pot.

I was so excited, I forgot to bring my camera. These pictures are all courtesy of my camera phone, which just does not do it justice.

On the way there I got this picture of Jimbo on the sly. A couple minutes later he saw me taking other pictures and he said to me "Don't take any pictures of me tonight, okay?" I'm posting this one anyway because, technically, I took it before he asked so it doesn't count.

The Melting Pot is crazy popular. We went there on a Sunday at 4:00 thinking, surely we are the only people under 60 that eat that early. Even then there is a 45 minute wait to be seated.

At the table our poor waitress had to school us on the ways of fondue. We were fondue virgins. There's kind of a lot to it, and Jim was more than a little skeptical at having to handle and cook raw meat. She said put it in the broth for 2 1/2 minutes, so of course Jim cooked his for about 7.

Again, I was so excited, I forgot to take pictures, but when dessert came it was just so beautiful I yelled out "don't touch it!" I had to get a photo of this.

Jim and I have different preferences with chocolate. He likes milk and I like dark, so they brought us this.

This is the stuff dreams are made of.

If the chocolate hadn't been so hot I might have licked the bowl. Okay, probably would have licked the bowl. Okay, okay, wanted to lick the bowl.

I have to give the place two enthusiastic thumbs up.
We definitely want to go back, although next time we'll more than likely just go for dessert. It was all super yummy, but I have issues with eating a dinner that's roughly the price of a car payment.


Monday, May 17, 2010

When Vanity Backfires

I don't consider myself a vain person.

I actually think I'm pretty low maintenance. In fact, I can probably get ready faster than a lot of men. But, like most people, there are some things I like about myself and some things that I don't.

As it turns out, I do have a little streak of vanity. Just a little one. I found a super great deal at the local Cosmetic Laser Surgery Center recently and I couldn't pass it up. In just two visits I can have all age spots, sun spots, and red blotchy areas zapped away. You may wonder how many age or sun spots I can possibly have at 32 (God bless you). Well, I didn't really think I had that many either until I was put under vivid lighting, had an extremely close-up picture taken of my face and then blown up on a computer monitor. It's shocking. Now I know why the consultation is free. Once you've seen what's really there, you can't just walk away.

My first appointment was at 7:30 this morning. Twelve hours later and I look like a train wreck. See, when you laser all these subtle imperfections in an effort to look good, they don't just go away. They blister and turn black. I have roughly 4,297 of them.

Allow me to paint you a picture....

Linda (my Laser Specialist) told me about a lady she recently treated. This lady had a couple treatments done and continued to work during the healing process (as am I). No one asked her about the change in her appearance and she didn't think much of it until her boss called her into the office to offer to send her to a drug rehab center. Her boss thought she was one of those meth addicts that scratches at imaginary bugs under their skin.

So, for the next two weeks I will be involuntarily playing the role of a slightly vain traveling meth addict. Yay!


Sunday, May 16, 2010

Angie Oakley

I've mentioned before that my job has certain (albeit unorthodox at times) perks. Thanks to my company I recently experienced the thrill of the shooting range. And now I'm hooked.

I had shot guns before but it had been a really, really, really long time ago. If you grow up in the country with older brothers, it's bound to happen. I vaguely remember shooting at boxes on top of hay bales.

This? This was the Real McCoy (on a side note, I watched a documentary on Joseph McCoy this morning, hence that term being in my head).

All in all, I shot 6 different pistols and 3 rifles. Not to brag (read: bragging coming), but I was the only girl there and had closer bullseye shots than the guys with the assault rifles. Girls rule.

This is me with the Big Daddy of the day. The AK47.

What does it mean when a company sends you to an upper management meeting then teaches you how to shoot a multitude of firearms?