Friday, June 29, 2012

Bachelorette Thoughts: The Awkwards.

By popular demand (meaning three of my friends have asked my thoughts on this), I have decided to share my thoughts on this season of The Bachelorette. Honestly, I was ecstatic when Emily was announced as the next Bachelorette- since day 1 of Brad's season (where she was a contestant, all you non-viewers) I labeled her Southern Barbie it looked like she could do no wrong. In my opinion, that thought has continued to this season with her as leading lady. 

I'm not going to try to fit all my thoughts, cheers, and jeers about this season of The Bachelorette to one post. There is simply too much to be said. Yes, I understand that I'm a little crazy for getting wrapped up in such a ridiculous reality show, but it's one of my guilty pleasures and I love it. 

Without further delay, I would like to introduce my post for today: The Awkwards. You know, the ridiculous people who do and say things that should not be said or done.

 I give my top 5 most awkward men for Emily's season of The Bachelorette:

5. Alessandro
This Brazilian Casanova didn't waste much time putting his foot in his mouth.
Oh, Alessandro. The odd hair. The word vomit ("You and your daughter are a compromise"). The mention of dating a cousin. Just too much weird.

4. Travis
Because bringing an Ostrich egg won't equal a freak flag, right?.
Honestly, this guy seemed really nice... just a tad strange. When is it ok to bring a giant egg on a first date, regardless of what type of metaphor you're trying to stick in there? That's right, never. 

3. Chris
Despite being only 25 ("I'm very mature!"), he has gotten into the final four. Emily must be seeing a whole lot more than the rest of us are, because I just don't see it.
Unfortunately, this man has gotten an edit that has been like nails on a chalkboard for me. High-strung, emotional, pouty, confrontational..... and he moves his head around a lot when he talks, which just puts me on edge. I'm sure he's really nice, yada, yada, but he kind of drives me bananas on the show. 

2. Kalon
Money can't buy everything. Not kindness, not class, not a wife. Too bad.
I get so irritated when "character" people get cast in this show rather than normal(ish) people. I've always compared Kalon to Ryan Phillippe's character Sebastian in Cruel Intentions, minus the niceness at the end.  

1. Ryan
Oh boy. There is so much to say about this one. I honestly wanted to like him because of his confidence and good looks, but every time he opened his mouth I wanted to punch him in the face. Let's get started.
The fashion choices.

The facial hair.

The crazy cow-lick hair. 

Poor guys... they go on reality TV to find love and/or attention (ok, mostly attention) and they get ridiculed by the likes of me and many others. I suppose they're asking for it if they go on a show like this, right?

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

A question for the universe.

Why is it that the moment I have to tighten my budget, Hobby Lobby decides to come out with tons of things that would look perfect in my house?

Case in point:

Not fair, Universe. Not fair. 

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Weekend Happenings.

About that weekend.... as always, it just sped on by. It was a lovely weekend, free of any major appointments or obligations. I love weekends like that- ones where we can just hang out as a family and enjoy each other. 

Friday evening we kicked off our weekend by hitting up the driving range. You know me, I'm not a fan of anything golf related, but the husband is a golf maniac. Dylan and I were good tagalongs for about 3 minutes before Dylan started running all over the place and in front of golfers despite me planning ahead and bringing bubbles, cars, and snacks to occupy his attention. Can't win them all, right? It really did turn into a win though- Dylan and I stopped by Golden Spoon to kill time before Ben was finished driving.... or ranging... whatever it's called. 

Saturday consisted of boot camp at the gym (me), golf (Ben), errands, and playtime. Dylan and I also hit up Hobby Lobby to stock up on art supplies, and Dylan has gotten to the stage where he enjoys making stuff. 

The boy also enjoys pretending to go fishing in the gutter:

I also made these delicious (completely) and nutritious (not even close) sandwiches for dinner on Saturday night. Ironically enough, I discovered this recipe watching Rachael Ray while running on the treadmill at the gym. They're absolutely amazing- a hamburger within a grilled cheese sandwich. Gah, my mouth is now watering.

Another lovely weekend!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Good eats.

Hello, friends! Since cutting down on work hours I have been able to spend a little more time finding good recipes and cooking them up in the kitchen. Despite having a little more time, my two main requirements are that all recipes must be quick and easy. A third requirement is that is must not contain fish, as the thought of eating fish makes me gag. But that's besides the point, right?

 Here are two gems that I have made over the past week:

Here are your ingredients:
Recipe adapted from Food Network

4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
3/4 pound small red-skinned potatoes, halved
2 sprigs fresh rosemary, plus 1 Tbsp leaves
1 clove garlic, smashed
Pinch of red pepper flakes
Juice of 2 lemons (squeezed halves reserved)
1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.  Cover the potatoes with cold water in a saucepan and salt the water.  Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook until tender, about 8 minutes.  Drain and set aside.

Pile the rosemary leaves, garlic, 2 tsp. salt and the red pepper flakes on a cutting board, then mince and mash into a paste using a large knife.  Transfer the paste to a bowl and stir in the juice of 1 lemon and the olive oil.  Add the chicken and turn to coat.

Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the chicken, cover and cook until browned, about 5 minutes.  Turn the chicken; add potatoes to the skillet and drizzle with the juice of the remaining lemon.  Add the rosemary sprigs and the squeezed lemon halves to the skillet; transfer to the oven and roast, uncovered, until the chicken is cooked through, about 25 minutes.


  • 3 whole Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts, Cut Into Cubes
  • 3 teaspoons Cajun Spice Mix, More To Taste
  • 1 pound Fettuccine
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1 whole Green Bell Pepper, Seeded And Sliced
  • 1 whole Red Bell Pepper, Seeded And Sliced
  • 1/2 whole Large Red Onion, Sliced
  • 3 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 4 whole Roma Tomatoes, Diced
  • 2 cups Low Sodium Chicken Broth
  • 1/2 cup White Wine *** I don't cook with wine, but used an extra 1/2 cup chicken broth in its place***
  • 1 cup Heavy Cream
  • Cayenne Pepper To Taste
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper, To Taste
  • Salt To Taste
  • Chopped Fresh Parsley, To Taste

Preparation Instructions

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain when pasta is still al dente; do not overcook!
Sprinkle 1 1/2 teaspoons Cajun spice over chicken pieces. Toss around to coat. Heat 1 tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a heavy skillet over high heat. Add half the chicken in a single layer; do not stir. Allow chicken to brown on one side, about 1 minute. Flip to the other side and cook an additional minute. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on a clean plate.
Repeat with remaining chicken. Remove chicken, leaving pan on high heat.
Add remaining olive oil and butter. When heated, add peppers, onions, and garlic. Sprinkle on remaining Cajun spice, and add salt if needed. Cook over very high heat for 1 minute, stirring gently and trying to get the vegetables as dark/black as possible. Add tomatoes and cook for an additional 30 seconds. Remove all vegetables from the pan.
With the pan over high heat, pour in the wine and chicken broth. Cook on high for 3 to 5 minutes, scraping the bottom of the pan to deglaze. Reduce heat to medium-low and pour in cream, stirring/whisking constantly. Cook sauce over medium-low heat for a few minutes, until cream starts to thicken the mixture. Taste and add freshly ground black pepper, cayenne pepper, and/or salt to taste. Sauce should be spicy!
Finally, add chicken and vegetables to sauce, making sure to include all the juices that have drained onto the plate. Stir and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, until mixture is bubbly and hot. Add drained fettuccine and toss to combine.

Friday, June 15, 2012

The simple life.

As previously mentioned, yesterday was my first "real" full day off work as a result of my part-time position. Before this week I was working 8-5, Monday-Friday. Mind you, I was lucky to be able to work from home quite a bit, but it wasn't the same. I wanted to be home when I was home, not be clicking away at my computer doing work. Yesterday I got a glimpse of the simple life that I love so much. 

So my new work schedule is working two full days and one half day each week. I am loving it so far. Yesterday and today I would usually be working, but not anymore- I'm free to do what I want when I want.... well, as free as you can be with a two year old.

Yesterday was lovely... went to the gym, did yardwork, cleaned the house, went to the grocery store, made a delicious dinner, and all the while having quality time with my boy. Dylan enjoyed spending the day with me too- he was my little buddy and helped me (in his two year old way) with whatever I was doing. 

I know that I'm acting like this was the first day I've had off ever.... I'm always off on the weekends and I just got home from a week long vacation. There was just something extra special about yesterday. I knew that I would typically be working the whole day, and it was so nice to not feel chained to my phone or computer in efforts to get some work done. It's like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders, and it's lovely. 

Is this how full-time stay at home moms feel? A lovely freedom to do whatever they and the kiddos want/need to do? I know that being a full-time stay at home moms is not easy or stress-free by any means, but there is a wonderful freedom in being able to just be at home taking care of your children each day without having to rush off to work. 

I remember The Great Meltdown of 2010 where I had a legit freak out over all the things I was trying to do. Work full time, mom full time, take care of the house, cook dinners, serve at church, pay attention to Ben, tend to my own needs, etc. I felt like I had so much on my plate that I wasn't able to do anything well. Luckily, the worst of those feelings passed, but I always felt like I was trying to do too much. Or maybe I just had too much going on to keep up with the expectations I had for myself. Either way, I am beyond thrilled to have more time at home with my boy. 

I haven't received my first part-time paycheck, so I'm sure it'll be a little depressing to see my income be cut in half. You know what though? I'm not that worried. I know that Ben and I can cut back on our spending and make things work just fine. It is worth it. 

It is so worth it. 

Thursday, June 14, 2012

A few things as of late.

1. In a follow up to my last post, I don't think that I can be trusted with nice sunglasses ever. On Tuesday I was driving Ben's car and was also wearing his sunglasses. Somehow I managed to lose his sunglasses while at my old office in American Fork. I was worry stricken, because it's bad enough that I lose my own sunglasses, but unacceptable that I lose my husband's as well. Amazingly enough they were found the next day in a very odd place- hallelujah- by a wonderful Good Samaritan. Thanks Jen and Brenton!

2. I happened upon these adorable bandages at one of my more recent Target runs. Yes, I'm actually hoping for a reason to wear these. Little, tiny scratch? Yep, a band aid will be necessary. Hangnail? You betcha. 

3. Today is my first full day of being off work since going part time. I'm seriously ecstatic about it. What should I do? Spend the afternoon in the backyard with Dylan? Clean my house until it sparkles? Go to the zoo? I'm aware that not being at work does not mean I'll be doing nothing- hello, caring for a 2 year old is real work- but I'm so excited to have more time home without work interruptions. 

Lots more to day, but Dylan is now awake. Adios!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

A Sad Story: Sunglasses Edition

Once there was a girl who had a perfect pair of sunglasses. They were beautiful, they were flattering, they were Chanel. The girl took great care of these sunglasses for over two years, and always stored them safely in their case, rather than just throwing them in her purse. "Nice things needed to be treated well," she thought. 
Sadly, the girl made a grave lapse in judgement. One day, she got out of her car and set her sunglasses on the trunk, where they were forgotten for the day. The next morning, the girl had to leave for work. She got in her car and drove off, not realizing that her beloved sunglasses that were still on the trunk. The sunglasses were never seen again. 

Sad, but true. 

The girl needed some new sunglasses, but had not yet saved enough for a fancy pair. Instead, she bought a pair of cheapies that she'd probably only want to wear for a month or two anyway, as they were fun but not quite her style:

In fact, the girl kind of felt like a 17 year old hipster in the cheapies. The girl committed that she would take better care of her next pair of sunglasses in order for this travesty to never be repeated. 

The End. 

Monday, June 4, 2012

Parenting Fail.

While I have plans of sharing photos and whatnot from my fabulous family vacation, I wanted to start things out with some real life. Yes, life is not always perfect, rosy, and well-accessorized. Sometimes you have times when you think to yourself, "Well that was some good parenting, ya dummy." I happen to have that moment on video for your viewing. Watch this pitiful video of what happens when poor Dylan gets on a piece of park equipment that is not for little ones. The kicker is that he said that he wanted down and was all done, and I was less than helpful. Whoops. I'm a first-time mom and I'm still learning, that's my excuse. Let it be known that Dylan was just fine after 20 seconds. 
Please tell me that this has happened to all of you parents?!?