Friday, April 29, 2011

Dinner Series: Spinach Tortellini Soup

This is a really easy and flavorful soup.  Highly recommend it!  Nom nom.  Recipe here:  The only thing I changed was I used petite diced tomatoes instead of stewed and also half of an onion finely diced.  I think you definitely need the onion for flavor.  Oh and I also threw in fresh spinach towards the end instead of frozen.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Easter Fun

I hope everyone had a nice Easter!  Ours was pretty good and definitely filled without a lot of food!

I attempted to make Eggs in Purgatory for the first time for Good Friday.  I don't think it typically has mashed potato pancakes though!  I wasn't a fan, I'd try it without the potatoes.  My husband loved it though.

Saturday morning my Mom and I went to my little niece's house to color eggs!

Easter treats from the Easter Bunny!

Chocolate Truffles from World Market

Easter morning I made this meyer lemon pancake mix from World Market.
They were awesome!

Desserts I made:
Creamy Lemon Squares.
Recipe here:
I think I'd stick to a traditional recipe in the future
Bunny Bait!  White chocolate covered popcorn with Easter peanut M&Ms.
I got the idea here:

Monday, April 25, 2011

Movie Review #5 - Water for Elephants

I read this book back in 2007 so it was hard for me to remember much about it.  I know I liked it and rated it four stars out of five.  I was very excited for the movie, for both Robert Pattinson and Reese Witherspoon.  I thought their romantic connection was believable on screen.  Overall I loved the movie and I thought they did a good job.  I saw it with my friend who read the book more recently than I did, she said some things were different but it did live up to her expectations.  I think someone who hadn't read the book would also enjoy the movie.  It has suspense, adventure, romance, and some humor.  The film LOOKED beautiful, and the elephant, Rosie, was amazing.
Overall I give it a 8 out of 10.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Movie Review #4 - Insidious

I probably had too high of expectations for this movie.  I had seen one preview, and kind of forgot about it, but a few weeks later I saw the high rating on and my 13 year old and 15 year old cousins told me it was the scariest movie they had seen (no offense but every movie they see is the scariest they've seen).  Anyway, I went with my Mom, Aunt and Husband and my Mom tends to laugh all the way through scary movies.  So that kind of made it less scary for me, not to mention half-way through it got really hokie and circus/funhouse-like.  It had potential but it went downhill.  I guess it was still an enjoyable experience thanks to my Mom and also my Aunt for spilling a ton of popcorn on the floor at one part!  oh and also the two of them SCREAMED so loud towards the beginning of the movie, the entire theater was looking at them.  

It's from the makers of Saw and Paranormal Activity, I find both of those movies a lot scarier and better overall.

Ps.  My husband really liked it a lot, but he believes this stuff can really happen!   I HOPE not.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Dinner Series: Shrimp Cobb Salad

I loosely took this from this month's Cooking Light.  We normally would have chicken in this type of salad, but I didn't really think of shrimp!  

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Dinner Series: Chicken Parmesan Burger Recipe from Cooking Light

I have some new recipes I am going to be trying out this week and I thought I'd post what we like here.  Last night we tried the Chicken Parmesan Burger Recipe from Cooking Light's April Issue.  They were sooo good!  I ended up using ground all white turkey though (because that's what Trader Joe's had) and some really good focaccia bread from Trader Joe's instead of buns.  The other thing I changed was the herbs, I used an Italian mixture of dried herbs that I get from a local Italian market.  I was a little worried about putting marinara sauce into the meat mixture, it made it kind of soupy, but it held together well in the end and really is what made it.  
I highly recommend making this, and it was really easy!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Tag Post

1. What is your favorite kind of pizza?
Fresh/Real Mozzarella with Mushrooms

2. Who is the most famous person you've met?
Sandra Oh.  We met her after her play in NYC, Satellites in 2006.  She met everyone that waited after the show and she signed my program.  I was a huge Grey's Anatomy fan at the time so that was exciting.

Hubby with Sandra Oh

3. What would your last meal be? 
Lobster, mashed potatoes, bruschetta, and strawberry shortcake.

4. Have you ever broken something and blamed someone else!?

5. If you could be any character in any Broadway Show,
- who would you be?
Well probably Eponine but she died, so Cosette.

6. What was your best subject in High School? 
Science, especially Chemistry and Physics, but also English and Math (surprisingly!).  Okay I was a goodie goodie and loved school and was obsessed with getting the best grade in the class (those teachers shouldn't have posted lists like that)!  

7. Describe your worst job ever. 

8. How many computers do you have?
One and my husband as a laptop.  He's a PC, I'm a Mac.

9. Describe your first driving experience.
Ugh, I was so scared to drive!!  So it probably wasn't good.  I didn't get my license until I was 19.

10. Show us your current favorite pair of shoes.
Lately it's my red rain boots.  Rain Rain Go Away!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Sephora 15% Off Code + Mini Ulta Haul (Urban Decay)

The 15% off sale for Sephora is April 15th - April 21st (you can print the in-store coupon here).  The online code is: BICHIC
I need to figure out what to get.  I think I want one of the Tarte Amazonian Clay Blushes everyone is raving about, a replacement for my Stila Kitten eyeshadow (almost used up), and the Smashbox Brow Tech to Go.  

I went to Ulta today and got the last box of Urban Decay Box of Potions for $30.  It has an eyeshadow primer potion (mine ran out), an eyelash primer potion (always wanted to try), a pore perfecting, and a lip primer potion with SPF 15.  What a deal!

I also found the knock off beauty blender for $5, some face sponge thing to wash your face with for $2, an My Favorite Color NYX eyeshadow (mine ran out), a flower pin/hair clip and a nail file.  

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Book Review - A Vintage Affair by Isabel Wolff

From goodreads:
Do fairytale dresses bring fairytale endings? Every dress has a history, so does Phoebe! Phoebe always dreamt of opening her own vintage dress shop. She imagined every detail, from the Vivienne Westwood bustiers hanging next to satin gowns, to sequinned cupcake dresses adorning the walls. At the launch of Village Vintage, Phoebe feels the tingle of excitement as customers snap up the fairytale dresses. Her dream has come true, but a secret from her past is casting a shadow over her new venture. Then one day she meets Therese, an elderly Frenchwoman with a collection to sell, apart from one piece that she won't part with ! As Therese tells the story of the little blue coat, Phoebe feels a profound connection with her own life, one that will help her heal the pain of her past and allow her to love again.

This was VERY good, couldn't put it down. It's a little more substantial than the typical chic-lit because of the story line (not just romance).  Would make an adorable movie also!  As my friend said, it would be great to see the shop and all those beautiful the dresses on film.  

Book Review - Winter Garden by Kristin Hannah

From goodreads:
Meredith and Nina Whitson are as different as sisters can be. One stayed at home to raise her children and manage the family apple orchard; the other followed a dream and traveled the world to become a famous photojournalist. But when their beloved father falls ill, Meredith and Nina find themselves together again, standing alongside their cold, disapproving mother, Anya, who even now, offers no comfort to her daughters. As children, the only connection between them was the Russian fairy tale Anya sometimes told the girls at night. On his deathbed, their father extracts a promise from the women in his life: the fairy tale will be told one last time—and all the way to the end. Thus begins an unexpected journey into the truth of Anya’s life in war-torn Leningrad, more than five decades ago. Alternating between the past and present, Meredith and Nina will finally hear the singular, harrowing story of their mother’s life, and what they learn is a secret so terrible and terrifying that it will shake the very foundation of their family and change who they believe they are.

Wow. Best book I have read since The Help last year. The last 100 pages were heartbreaking and hard to get through (so devastating and sad). The story is so rich and just amazing. Sisters, friendship, family, love...very powerful.  I rarely post a book on here since most of us are on goodreads, but this one is really worth the read!!!

Movie Review #3 - Hanna

I saw this last night, not knowing really what to expect.  I saw the preview and it looked cool, dangerous, scary, and The Chemical Brothers did the music.  Oh and Cate Blanchett is in it, which helped me want to see it at the theater.  I think I maybe had higher expectations for it, it wasn't AMAZING, but it was good and entertaining.  The other two movies I just posted about (Adjustment Bureau and Lincoln Lawyer) were better.  This is totally different though, really adventurous and full of action and suspense.  I jumped a few times and was creeped out.  I really liked the beginning in the forest/wilds of Finland, and then when she escapes capture and realizes where she is.  The second half of the movie felt forced to me, but overall I think this would be a good one to get on DVD or see it at the theater if you love action/suspense/combat/girl kicks ass type movies.

*I liked the actress, I just noticed she will be playing Itaril in The Hobit 1 and 2!  I can definitely see her as an elf.

Movie Review #2 - The Adjustment Bureau

It's hard for me to describe this movie, I just know it made me feel good and I really liked it.  It's a different kind of love story, I thought Emily Blunt did great along side Matt Damon.  Before I went I had heard if you like Inception you would like this.  It's nothing like Inception though, not really.  My husband liked it a lot also, we recommend it!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Lunch Date

My husband had Friday off so we got to go to lunch at Pier W in Lakewood, Ohio.  It's one of the few restaurants right on Lake Erie with a great view of the Cleveland skyline.  It was a rainy/dreary day but we got one of the best tables in the restaurant (right at the window) and it was still nice watching the storm and fog come in.  They have the best seafood in Cleveland and it didn't disappoint at a lower-cost lunch meal!  I had the almond pistachio crusted tilapia and my husband had the scallops.  We split a baked Alaska for dessert since I heard my cousin taking about those a few weeks ago, but I never had one before!  It had mocha ice-cream inside, so good!

You can just make out the Cleveland skyline in the distance/fog

After lunch we went to the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame.  We couldn't figure out when we were last there, but it was at least 5 years ago.  We didn't take too long in the museum part since we had done it 2x before, we were there to see the 3D U2 concert they were showing.  It was actually the same tour we went to in 2005 (Vertigo Tour), but it was in Argentina and Brazil (those fans go crazy!!).  It was really cool, the sound, and the 3D, it felt like we could touch Bono.  I loved it!  Definitely worth the extra $3 ticket price, and it was 90 minutes.  

We had a great date day in our city! 

Monday, April 4, 2011

Let Me Introduce You To Stu

This is Stu, The Traveling Gnome:
Add caption
He is almost 4 years old exactly.  He loves to travel!

Aberdeen Beach, Aberdeen Scotland
He forgot his clubs!  Old Course, St. Andrews Scotland
Stu loves fish n chips!  Olde Angel Inn Pub, Niagara on the Lake Canada
Niagara Falls Canada
Edinburgh Castle, Edinburgh Scotland

Where will he go next?

Friday, April 1, 2011

Easy Baked Cheese Crepes Recipe

I love this recipe from Giada de Laurentiis,
I forgot about it and hadn't made it in a few years.  I made it Wednesday night and it was so good!  
Also it's low-carb! 
We accidentally left the left-overs out while we went swimming though so we had to throw those away :(

First you make a stack of ten crepes and let cool, this was the last one.

Then you fill it with mozzarella and fontina cheese, and a little basil.

Ten little piggies all rolled up.

Add sauce and what's left of the mozzarella and some parmesan cheese.  And bake.

See the sticker?  That means it's tried and tested!