Friday, January 29, 2010

A sequel...

In honor of my original post, MEN, from exactly one year ago, I give you...


For this past Christmas, I decided to make a little more permanent of a man for my dear sister. Of course those gingerbread men are fun and biting their heads off will never go out of style. I honestly look forward to the day I have a teenage daughter going through her first heartbreak. I can put my arm around her and lead her to the kitchen, comforting her with the words "let me show you how to deal with this". I will teach her a valuable lesson in making men, decorating them to relieve her frustrations, and the final step of enjoying every last bite.

I digress...

THIS past Christmas, I came across the absolute best pattern ever on the web and decided it was time for me to be a little creative and crafty. I pulled out the old needle and thread and whipped up a man for the new decade. A man who will come back, year after year. A man who likes nothing more than hanging around - just being in the room with his lady, or waiting for her return. It doesn't bother him. He doesn't say a word and never gets in the way. This kind of man is just the kind that pops into our minds throughout the year and we look forward to the day we can help bring him out of his box and spend some quality time together. This man is guaranteed to bring a smile to his lady's face. But be careful, your girlfriends might want to steal him for their own. I must admit I thought about keeping him for myself instead of giving him to my sister. He is quite irresistible...maybe he has a cute older brother???

Tuesday, January 26, 2010


Here's wishing for warm, sunny days...

Montego Bay, Jamaica
August 2009

Monday, January 25, 2010

Slow Cookin'

Right now I am whipping up a pot of my favorite white bean chili that I mentioned before. I am at the part where it simmers for 20 minutes, so I thought I would take the opportunity to write. I have such a hard time staying on top of things like cooking and my blog while I am working full time. I've had the job for almost 6 months, but I still don't know if I am used to the little amount of time I have for myself during the week.

This past week was especially busy because I had rehearsals in the evenings after working all day. Sometimes it was hard to focus as rehearsal went later into the evening. My brain wanted to shut down and go to sleep! Anyway, I am glad to have this night off and have the chance to make some soup to eat this week.

Lately I have discovered an exciting new way to cook! I got a crock pot for Christmas and have used it the past two weekends. I still can't get over how easy it is and how good it turns out! I don't know how much crock-potting I will do in the hot summer, but there is nothing better in the winter than a nice roast or stew that simmers and cooks all day. The first thing we made was a beef pot roast with potatoes and carrots. Yummy... it was so delicious. At one point I was nervous because it looked pretty gross through the glass top of the pot. But at the end of the day I had an amazing meal that was hot, juicy, and tender. The next weekend - this past Saturday, we got a pork shoulder roast and made pulled pork out of it. I can't get over how well it turned out. I've been eating pulled pork sandwiches for a few days now and must admit I need a day off, but it is REALLY GOOD. I put the barbeque seasonings in the crock pot, along with ketchup and apple cider vingar, so the meat absorbed all that delicious flavoring while it cooked all day. Throw everything in the pot, go out for the day and come home to a nice home-cooked meal. I love it! Not to mention how much money it saves to have those leftovers for lunch instead of going out to eat. It's a win-win situation.

Time to puree the bean mixture for my chili... bon apetite!

Sunday, January 10, 2010


I know we are well into January now, but I do want to take a minute to say how nice my Christmas was this year...or this past year...2009. I am so glad I got to take a few days off work and get away to West Virginia. As I mentioned before, getting the entire family there during the wintery December days was a bit of a challenge, but eventually did work out. A few days late and many reroutes later, Ben and Jen made it from Montana with my new little nephew, Joel. Meeting him for the first time and being able to be around him on his first Christmas was an absolute delight. He is the cutest little thing. This is a picture of when I first met him at the airport. The poor little guy had just had quite a time with his trip, but he seemed to do pretty well. We even had to wait around for luggage to arrive on a different flight. He didn't even cry (he saved that for the car ride home! Yeah!) He spit up a bit on Stacy, but not on me, so I guess he liked me. Not that he didn't like her, but he just respected me more, right? I am the 'elder' sister and he may have learned to 'respect the elder' or something like that. Well anyway, I managed not to get spit up on and I don't mind that at all.

Besides baby fun, Christmas was really nice because of all the normal making men with Stacy. That's always an enjoyable tradition. The stories we tell and quotes we come up with as we roll out, cut, create, and bake our guys get better with each passing year. Mom tried to give us some tips on how to help our men hold together when they started falling apart. She had some good ideas, but it ended up being quite a messy batch regardless. Maybe better luck next time...

Monday, January 4, 2010

A Brand New Year!

Happy 2010 and welcome to it! The past few weeks have been a ride, that's for sure, and I have a lot of catching up to do. I went home to West Virginia for Christmas week and then came back to New York for New Years week. Stacy came along with me and we tore apart the city, as usual, despite the roaring winds and arctic temperatures. I also feel like I have been eating nonstop for at least a month. I am best described as 'feeling like a blob'. I guess that is what the holidays are for, right???

Anyway, I guess things are heading back to 'normal' now as Stacy left this morning. I always say that things will get back to normal someday, that things will calm down and slow down pretty soon...but do they really ever?

I have lots to chat about, but for now how about the last meal of 2009:

Delicious salmon from L'Express French Cafe

And the 'meal' that welcomed in 2010:

Chocolate Pizza a la Max Brenner....but of course.