Sunday, November 30, 2014

Christmas Countdown

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas at the hive!  I truly love the feeling of a decorated home.  You can just feel the joy.  Lately I've been swapping out various printables in the kitchen.  It's such a fun and easy little way to include something seasonal.  First was a monogrammed pumpkin, then a thankful reminder, and now a Christmas countdown. 

I used my new obsession Picmonkey to make the festive little countdown.  Once in the frame, we use a dry erase marker to update the countdown every morning.  Simple as that. 

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Paul Prudhomme's Chocolate Cake with Mocha Icing

My love of Paul Prudhomme is no secret around these parts.  I have yet to try a recipe of his that isn't completely fantastic, and this just might be the most fantastic of all....and I don't even like chocolate cake.  We first tried this cake on that first trip to K-Paul's and my family has been making it ever since. In fact, I made one this week for Daddy's birthday, which we always celebrate on Thanksgiving.  Today, I'm enjoying a piece for breakfast....shhhhh, don't tell. 

Friday, November 28, 2014

Five on Friday [Thanksgiving Edition]

Happy Friday, Y'all!  Wishing you and yours a wonderful Thanksgiving week and an especially wonderful Holiday Season.  Today's Five on Friday will be brief, as we're still in a food coma, and are busy decorating our little hive for Christmas.  No shopping here.....

Hubby and I celebrated Thanksgiving with his parents earlier in the day and then my family.  It is truly heartwarming to be able to spend time with those we hold so dear.  Life is filled with so many blessings for which we are thankful.  My goal is to try to pay special attention to these blessings throughout the year, not just during this season.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wishing you and yours a wonderfully Happy Thanksgiving!  Today, I'm enjoying time with those I love most and remembering all of life's many blessings. 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Happy Birthday, Pop!

Today I'm wishing my daddy a very Happy Birthday!  He was the first man I ever loved and is truly one of my greatest friends.  Thank you, Pop, for being such a wonderful role model.  You have given me the greatest example by which to lead my life, all while being my biggest cheerleader.  Wishing you not only a terrific day, but an incredible year, too!  I love you!

Happy Birthday, Pop!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Stocking Stuffers

Who doesn't love stocking stuffers.....a pretty stocking filled with little goodies Santa picked out just for you.  I especially love a themed stocking, when everything kind of goes together.  So with that in mind, I've compiled a little list of goodies for the chef in your life.  Little goodies that will make their time in the kitchen just that much more enjoyable.  The products include a little of everything.  Without further ado, here we go:

Wood Lemon Reamer (Williams Williams-Sonoma -one of my all time favorite gadgets.)

Wood Lemon Reamer

Monday, November 24, 2014

Christmas Binder

There have been some moments of slight panic around these parts this week.  Y'all, I have lost my Christmas binder.  I have torn the house apart, searched high and low, and it is just no where to be found.  I can't even think of any more places to look.  So, if your card arrives in the mail and it looks just like last year, just pretend it doesn't.  (No kiddos, so no photo cards here....I mean who wants to see a picture of just Hubby and me?? Ha.)  Or even worse, if you receive the same gift as last year (because clearly it was a brilliant idea if I gifted it the first time) just smile and please forgive me.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Five on Friday V

It was a pretty quiet week around these parts.  Stuck close to home and just tried to get through....We have a whole week off for the holiday next week!  Yipee!!  Can't wait to celebrate with loved ones and put up my Christmas decorations.  This weather certainly has me in the mood!  Now, enough rambling, let's get to it!

This is always a hard week for me.  I've been missing my mama something fierce this year, but spent time focusing on how blessed I am to have had her as my mom.  She was incredible.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

What's for Dinner [Braised Beef with Hilopites]

About a month ago I searched all of Indianapolis for fresh filo dough to no avail.  Other than at a local Greek restaurant downtown I still haven't found any.  (If you know of some, please let me know!!)  I did, however, stumble upon Taste of Europe, a little market and restaurant who offers a nice selection of Greek pastas, including hilopites.  I immediately grabbed them initially planning on making them with chicken.  After some further thought I decided Hubby should be introduced to them with braised beef instead.  It was a huge winner, and he has requested to have it again soon.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Missing Mom

Today I'm thinking of my mama, just as I do everyday, and hardly believing she's been gone so long.  But mainly today I'm focusing on just how very lucky I am to have had such a wonderful mom who gave us such incredible love.  She was truly the best.  So, my challenge to you today, is to give your own moms a big hug and remind them just how much you love them. 

I know I've shared this pic before....
but it's still my favorite!

Monday, November 17, 2014

What's for Dinner [Grapefruit, Pomegranate, Walnut, and Blue Cheese Salad]

I love eat it every night kinda love.....I think it's the Greek and French in me.  I also think a major contributing factor to that love is the possibilities: the greens, the toppings, the dressings (although mine is typically always a form of vinaigrette) the possibilities are endless.

This salad is literally a compilation of things we had on hand that I thought might go well together....they did.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Holiday Mart

Friday night I attended the Junior League Holiday Mart with a sweet, new friend.  It had been years since I last attended and I was super excited to spend to get a jump on my Christmas shopping.  (Typically, I'm nearly finished with my shopping, this year I've barely begun.  Whoops!)  It was "Girls Night Out" with a drink coupon and desserts included with your ticket. I had a truly wonderful time laughing and giggling.

If I'm being completely honest, I was a little disappointed with the selection of booths this year.  Over the years it has changed from primarily unique, one of a kind Christmas goodies, to many, many booths of women's clothing.  Now I will say the clothes were still adorable and cute, just not what I happened to be looking for. 

Friday, November 14, 2014

Five on Friday IV

WOO-HOO!!!  It's Friday!!!  Although it is supposed to be freezing this weekend (literally - yesterday the wind chill was 15. FIFTEEN. I mean, it's November, right?) I'm always excited to spend some time with those I love.  Now, let's get down to it....

We had this super delicious salad with friends Sunday.....and I've made it every night since.  Pear, blue cheese, walnuts, and a could you go wrong??

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Giving Thanks

The older I get, the more I fall in love with Thanksgiving.  I love being with friends and family for the sole purpose of expressing gratitude.  I love that there isn't pressure to come up with the perfect gift.  I love the constant reminder remember all for which we are thankful.  And yes, I love the food.  Ha, ha! 

As a little daily reminder for this month of gratitude, I whipped up a couple printables on Picmonkey.  It was my very first attempt at this, and hopefully I will improve over time, but for now, these fit the bill perfectly. 

This first sheet took the place of our monogrammed chevron pumpkin in the kitchen.  As much as I love it, it was just a little too Halloweeny.  We use a dry erase marker on the glass of the picture frame to record our daily notes of gratitude. 

I have been using the second printable as tags to attach to little goodies for dear friends and family.  And as a bonus having them readily available has encouraged me to give a little more this season. They might also make an appearance at Thanksgiving dinner. 

Now, if I've done this correctly, you should be able to save the picture and print for your own use.  I'm keeping my fingers crossed it works ;)!

Happy Thanksgiving Season!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

In My Lunchbox [Tilapia Bento]

This week's bento box is just kind of a compilation of goodies from the fridge and the fact that tilapia was on super sale at Costco.  I'm not complaining though because the end result was yummy goodness.

In my lunchbox this week:
  • tilapia (quickly saute with chef's salt, hit with lemon)
  • sugar snap peas
  • roasted red pepper hummus
  • garlic and herb laughing cow cheese
  • whole wheat crackers
  • apple
Clearly I enjoy lunches that have lots of little bites of things.  As a bonus it makes it super easy to pack a week's worth of lunches in a snap.

For my snack I simply packed a little Greek yogurt in the individual serving size cups.  Costco by far has the best price on Fage, which is my favorite brand. 

Happy Lunching!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

What's for Dinner [Pear, Blue Cheese, and Walnut Salad]

Dear friends D and S made the most delicious salad for our dinner Sunday night.  So delicious that I scrawled the recipe down on a napkin and made it the very next day.  Y'all have to try this, especially since pears are on sale this week at Kroger ;).

Pear, Blue Cheese, and Walnut Salad
They originally found the recipe in the paper

  • 1 Bartlett pear, cored and sliced lengthwise into thin strips
  • 3/4 c. crumbled blue cheese
  • 3/4 c. walnut halves, toasted (*I didn't toast, just threw them in there)
  • 8 large romaine lettuce leaves, torn
  • 1/4 c. olive oil1
  • /4 c. cider vinegar
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 5 large basil leaves, minced
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 T honey
  • Dear friends D and S added red onion, which was a brilliant move!!
Mix the pear, cheese, walnuts and romaine in a salad bowl.  Stir the oil, vinegar, garlic, basil, salt and honey in a small bowl with a wire whisk.  Toss the dressing with the salad just before serving.

(*I just threw all the ingredient in a mason jar, like I do most of my dressings.  I may or may not have gotten a little teary eyed as I added the honey.....we discovered last week that our very healthy, thriving bee hives were empty.  No bees.  I'm pretty crushed, as they were established and seemed to be doing so well.  We'll try again in the spring.)

Happy Cooking!

Friday, November 7, 2014

Five on Friday III

Happy Friday!!  This week has been long.  Really long.  Very happy it's finally Friday! 

Like I said, it's been a long, long week, so I decided to treat myself this morning with my favorite fall obsession, the homemade pumpkin latte.  I might even need two to get going today.....

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Paint Your Own Pottery

Bestie KP and I headed to Half Baked Pottery where we painted our blues away.  She's extremely talented and I'm typically pretty jealous when we go because her creations are always fabulous and mine are always, well, the same.  I'm not much of a risk-taker and know I can successfully paint the triangular Christmas tree, so that's what I usually do.  I'm happy with them, but I know that at some point, I'm going to have to venture outside of my comfort zone and finally do something different.  But for now, the Christmas Tree Series......

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

On My Bookshelf [Necessary Lies by Diane Chamberlain]

While searching for an altogether different book at the library, I came upon Necessary Lies instead....lucky thing, too, because I really liked it!  It is a book that makes you think outside the box, makes you consider other perspectives, and puts the reader in a position to consider what they might do if they were the character...just the kind of book I enjoy.  I do have to admit, however, it did, at points, make me slightly uncomfortable, and I don't know how I feel about the ending, but overall I would recommend it.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

In My Lunchbox [Asian Inspired Bento]

Stating that a bento box is "Asian inspired" is a little redundant.....please just forgive and pretend you didn't notice ;)!  My very favorite lunch is the bento box from Sakura.  The salmon teriyaki with sushi is like a little bit of heaven.  Pair that with the fact that Daddy was my usual lunch date, and it was perfection.  This week's lunchbox was a inspired by theirs (although not nearly as good and without the wonderful company). 

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