Monthly Archives: March 2015

A New Rug (and some other upcoming projects)

From the ongoing department of Things My Parents Are Purging From Their House, we now have this new kitchen rug.

Rug

True story, when we got back from Italy, I was heart set on washing all of our rugs.  Don’t ask, it was sort of just the beginning of what is an ongoing spring cleaning and the list of things to do is (obviously) long.  Anyway, the bathroom rugs did just fine in the wash, and the kitchen rug basically disintegrated.   Awkward.

Conveniently, this rug was stashed away in their basement, and it sort of looked like our old one, so it’s ours now.

Like I said before, it’s spring cleaning time.  Hooray.  On the counsel of Katie*, we will not be washing our windows until some point in April because the dust needs to settle.  With that in mind, our external windows haven’t been washed since Marcus bought the house in 2009, so it is BADLY needed.  I think we are going to be very impressed by how much brighter it is inside!

Another project we want to tackle is tearing out the carpet in our basement entryway and tiling that area.  I don’t know on what advice the previous owners decided to put white carpet down in front of the door leading in from our garage, but understandably the destruction has been total.  Maybe this counts less as spring cleaning and more as renovation.

In that same vein, there are a few other painting projects that I’m looking into, but those (along with the ongoing search for our main floor bathroom vanity and some new blinds for the window in the basement) are a bit longer term and we haven’t nailed anything down quite yet.  It will be interesting to see what makes it out of the brainstorming phase and into reality.

Do you have any spring cleaning or renovation plans?

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Friday Food Round-Up!

This week I dusted off a few of my old favorite cookbooks by Nigella and I am so glad I did.  There are actually a slew of recipes that used to be in our rotation on a regular basis and there are a number of recipes I think we need to try.

Sunday – Crisp Chicken Cutlets with Salad on the Side from Nigella Kitchen

Sunday

This is a new-to-us recipe even though I am sure I have flipped past it dozens of times.  It is essentially a different twist on Mustard Milanese from The Smitten Kitchen and a delightful one it is.  The breading on this includes parmesan cheese, celery salt and cayenne pepper which gives it an 11/10 kick.  Instead of fennel and mustard vinaigrette, the greens are topped with marinated tomatoes.  We’ll be eating this again.

Tuesday – Curry in a Hurry from Nigella Express

Tuesday

This curry recipe is an old favorite.  Without any prep work (excluding the chicken thighs that I had been thawing in the fridge for a few days), I was able to get the entire meal chopped and simmering in 15 minutes.  This dinner is a great one to stretch out a few pieces of meat because the recipe calls for edamame AKA a second source of protein.  Love it.

Thursday – Chickpea Salad

Thursday

It’s official you guys.  Chickpea salad is officially a hybrid of several chickpea salads.  I needed to toss together a quick dinner post-bachelorette party.  There’s also the small detail that we’re pretty much down to scraps for the weekend in our fridge, AKA eggs, potatoes, and avocados.  This will give us something to munch on for the next few days.

Another Surprise From My Parents’ Basement

Hi, party kittens.  Thank God It’s Thursday, right?  I was telling Marcus that I was putting together the Friday Food Round-Up! tonight, and he said, Wow!  You haven’t blogged all week!

True story, husband.  True story.  Places to go, people to see.

If last week was extremely relaxed and extremely slow, this week has been fast paced and exhausting.  See also: last week I had No Plans.  This week I had Many Plans.

Anyway.  My parents are selling their house, right?  As the endless purging of possessions continues (we’re on month five now), Mom’s latest find was this pink dress that I wore to my cousin Jenna’s wedding when I was approximately 11.  I have no idea as to how that dress has managed to survive in the basement for the last 16 or so years, but it has, preserved in its dry cleaning bag.

When Mom dropped this dress off at our house, she suggested to me that I might try it on. I said Absolutely Not.  Full disclosure: the dress was a child’s size 18.  And then, because I am a glutton for punishment, I attempted to put it on anyway.

Dress

The bow is a fetching look, no?

Reverb 15 | March | Spring Favorites

#reverb15 is the opportunity for us to reflect and project throughout 2015.   Each month, Meredith, Sarah and I will be posting on a new prompt.  Join us by writing, or join us by reading. No matter what you choose, come with us.

Spring favorites: Cleaning out the closet, updating your beauty regime, tackling DIY projects.  What are your favorites this spring?

Juice

I have been drinking quite a bit of this juice from Trader Joe’s.  It’s a somewhat obnoxiously expensive habit, and it’s not one that I plan to make a long-term one.  However, since we didn’t really eat any notable amount of vegetables while we were in Italy, I see this as a part of getting back on-track with my regular diet.  I know that in a perfect world, there would be some sort of juice bar near our house that I could visit to get this stuff freshly pressed, but that is not really how it works in Minneapolis, so this will do just fine!

Eyeshadow

I bought this eye shadow quad before we left for Italy because I was at that weird place with my current palette where I had used more than 2/3 of the available product and I didn’t want to run out while we were away.  I really haven’t used the darkest shade at all, but I’ve really enjoyed the highlighter and the greens that were included.  I just peeked at the label and it’s called Emerald Smokes if you’re searching for it at the store!

Shoes

If I do some rough math, this is at least my 20th pair of Brooks Running Ravenna shoes.  I really liked the 5s and the product reviews of the 6s were not glowing, so I sourced two new pairs that based on my current weekly mileage will take me to September or so.  They’re not just a spring favorite, they’re an always-favorite.

Cookies

Another all-time favorite?  This giant plastic bear full of frosted animal crackers with sprinkles.  I think it’s like $6 at Target.  I brought this home and Marcus’ greatest criticism was that the animals don’t really look like animals.  He’s not wrong.  I identified one of the misshapen cookies as “a beaver sitting down.”  I guess it’s good that I bought them for the frosting and sprinkles and not the actual shapes!

What are your spring favorites?

Reverb 15 | February | Love

#reverb15 is the opportunity for us to reflect and project throughout 2015.   Each month, Meredith, Sarah and I will be posting on a new prompt.  Join us by writing, or join us by reading. No matter what you choose, come with us.

Wuv, twue wuv…Love is strange:What characteristic or habit of yours is so odd, you’d be mortified if your partner ever discovered it? Alternatively, what makes you a total goober and your other half still loves you for it? If you’re single, let your freak flag fly and tell us about what you’re afraid might turn off a potential mate.

Don’t mind me you guys, I’m just playing catch-up with our Reverb prompts!

I don’t know that I have a secret habit that Marcus would find to be off-putting, though it would also be sort of pointless to share that here, since he reads the blog.

When we were driving to dinner the other night, there is an incident that he brought up that I do feel would be a fitting tale for this prompt.

I don’t know that I’ve blogged at length about my ears on the blog.  Really, there’s not a lot to say there on a daily basis.  But, for those members of the group who are behind and/or do not know, I have crappy ears.  I’ve gotten ear infections my entire life.  I’ve ruptured my ear drums because of said ear infections more times than I could count and/or remember, and in eighth grade, I got flesh eating strep in my right ear (true story) and I feel like that really tells you everything you need to know.

Anyhow.  I want to say that as Marcus and I were coming up on a year of dating, I was spending the night at his house.  There are many details that are hazy, but I do remember for a fact that this was Mother’s Day eve.  I had been fending off a cold for a while and that evening, my cold turned into a full-fledged ear infection, which early the next morning (AKA on Mother’s Day) turned into a ruptured ear drum and the unholy mess that goes along with that.

So here I am, at my boyfriend’s house, in indescribable pain with fluid running from my ear, asking him if he will please take me to urgent care and from there to my parents’ house.  Because…Mother’s Day.  It was not my most attractive moment.

And all the while, the only soundtrack  running through my head was This is it.  This is the end.  There is literally no way he is going to want to stay with me after this.  And yet, after the ruptured ear drum and the subsequent early AM urgent care trip and the drive of shame to my parents house (complete with a second rupture!), he did not run away.  That last sentence says it all.

He did not run away.  I guess I’ll keep him. 😉

Reverb 15 | January | Ungoals

#reverb15 is the opportunity for us to reflect and project throughout 2015.   Each month, Meredith, Sarah and I will be posting on a new prompt.  Join us by writing, or join us by reading. No matter what you choose, come with us.

Ungoals: What are so NOT doing this year? What’s on your “I just can’t care about that” list?

I know that this is January’s prompt, and that here I am writing on it in March, but this may actually be the most perfect and true embodiment of Ungoals.

I spent 2014 letting go of everything.  You can read about it here.  If you don’t want to click through (can’t blame you), a brief summary is that I cut out the following: schedule stresses, trying to fit everyone/everything in, dead-end relationships, pretending that I feel bad that I don’t wear actual jeans, what I eat.

It was a really radical change and it was a really freeing change.  Was it freeing for Marcus?  It’s hard to know if he really noticed. 🙂

The thing that probably changed the most as I continued to pile things onto the I just can’t care about that-list were my relationships.  When you change your values system and you stop prioritizing the things that the people around you do, it gets weird.  I absolutely do not believe that we all need to value the same things.  However, when you make it clear that you no longer place importance on the things that others place The Most Importance on, there is some uncomfortable dissonance there.  A lot of relationships hinge on agreement as a basis for existence and when you stop agreeing, you have in effect ruined the social compact.

Anyway.  2015 has been great.  We have been doing first and worrying second (or never).  Apart from our Italy trip, I have been a terrible Instagrammer.  I’ve read a lot of books.  We’ve thrown parties at inconvenient times.  I’ve seen friends.  We’ve  gone on dates.  There have been cocktails, and I’ve done more baking in the past few months than I have done in a long time.  Baking is an odd barometer in my life.  The more relaxed I am, the more likely I am to whip up a batch of cookies or a pan of bars.  That being said, a pan of Cadbury Mini-Egg Blondies just came out of the oven.

Blondies

My ungoals are working out just fine.

Friday Food Round-Up!

We had a pretty good streak of eating at home this week and God it was so good to be able to cook and feast the usual way.

Saturday – Channa Masala, Rice and Steamed Broccoli
Saturday

Honestly, even though the channa masala was from the freezer, the steamed broccoli was from a steamer bag, and the rice went directly into the steamer, this dinner might have been a little bit much work for Immediately After Landing.  That being said, it was Just Perfect.

Sunday – Pulled Chicken Turkey BBQ Sandwiches from Dinner: The Playbook, Oven Fries, and Knock-Off “Chicken Bucket” Coleslaw

Sunday

We used turkey instead of chicken because we had one turkey breast left in the freezer and it needed to be eaten.  This was the first dinner that we have gotten to eat on the deck and it was so 11/10.  I know that everyone in Minnesota got to do this last week, but you guys.  Spring is here!

Monday – Mustard Milanese from The Smitten Kitchen

Monday

Can you tell that we missed vegetables while we were away?

Tuesday – Breakfast Tacos from The Homesick Texan and Guacamole

Tuesday

Simple.  Fast.  Yum.