Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter!

After church today, we had 6 of our friends over for an Easter brunch. I wanted to get a picture of all the food arranged so prettily (if I do say so myself), but by the time I remembered to do it, the food had been basically demolished. :) So, you'll have to believe me that it looked nice. The menu consisted of:

Asparagus and Swiss Egg Bake

Ham, Egg, and Cheese Cups
Sausage Cheese Muffins
Banana Peanut Butter Oatmeal Muffins
Fresh Fruit Bruschetta
Strawberries and Cream Cake
Strawberry Citrus Slushies

All of the recipes turned out well, but I especially liked the Strawberries and Cream Cake. I served it with homemade whipped cream, and it was so delicious! Perfect for a spring or summer dessert.

Meredith and Brett

Ryan and Megan (They had just biked 30 miles to return home from a camping trip!)

Austin and Erin

Darby and Me

It was a wonderful Easter. The sun was shining, the service at church was very uplifting (we sang "Christ the Lord is Risen Today," which I LOVE), and we got to enjoy food and fellowship with some of our good friends. So thankful for the many blessings God has given us in this life and, more importantly, for the hope we have of eternal life.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


Well, I made it to my goal weight! The weight came off faster than I thought it would, which reinforces to me that I was heavier than I needed to be. Now, I'm trying to figure out how to ease up on the points counting without going totally crazy. In that spirit, I thought I'd share some of my favorite healthy snacks. Of course, I still enjoy my ice cream and baked goodies, but I'm trying to practice a little more moderation. :)
  • Sargento Light cheese sticks
  • Fiber One yogurt mixed with 1 sliced banana and 1/4 c. Cascadian Farm maple brown sugar granola
  • sliced cucumbers and baby carrots with 2 tbsp. Sabra roasted red pepper hummus
  • smoothies made with half a banana, 1/2 cup of frozen, unsweetened mixed fruit, and 1/2 - 1 cup of 1% milk (enough to make the smoothie drinkable)
  • Kashi TLC honey almond flax granola bars
What healthy snacks do you like? I need variety to keep going.

Sunday, April 17, 2011


Well, the good news is: I passed my exam! I'm very glad to have that out of the way. 1 down, 6 to go. But the other 6 won't be until next school year, so I just won't think about that yet. :)

The bad news is: I learned I'm a TERRIBLE single-tasker. Now, I always knew I preferred multi-tasking, but I thought that I could choose to single-task when I needed to. I found out this past week that that is not the case. I really needed to devote almost all of my non-class time to studying for the test. So I decided ahead of time that I was just going to let everything else go: no housework, no grocery shopping, minimal cooking, etc. But when it came time to follow through, it just about killed me. It makes me so stressed to see laundry unwashed, dishes not put away, e-mails unread, etc. And having to eat pizza and sandwiches for dinner feels like some sort of personal failure, even though I know that's ridiculous. (Also, side note: Darby and I have a very fair division of labor. So all of the chores not taken care of were my responsibility, not his. And even though I'm in charge of making dinner, he NEVER complains about what we have. So any pressure I feel is totally self-imposed.)

Darby, on the other hand, is a great single-tasker. Sometimes this is a problem, as he can't put a project out of his mind until it's done, even if he really needs to do other stuff. But this week, I realized that single-tasking can be an asset, especially in grad. school. I think next time I need to study I'm going to have to go to a coffee shop or some place where I can't see the mess. Maybe I should go to a hotel (hee-hee)!

Are there any other chronic multi-taskers out there? Do you have tricks for making yourself focus on one thing when you have to?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Sorry, I've been MIA around here lately. Perhaps I'm giving myself too much credit to think anyone even noticed. :)

I am taking one of my comprehensive exams for my degree on Saturday, so I'm studying like crazy. I'll be back next week with an update. Have a great week!

Sunday, April 03, 2011

What's Cookin'

One of my goals is to whittle my "to try" recipes I've saved online to under 200. So I've been trying to make quite a few new recipes. Of course, I keep adding recipes, so my progress is a little slow. :) Here are some of the favorites I've tried recently:
  • Crockpot Refried Beans. I LOVE beans, and these are so easy. You don't even have to soak the beans beforehand, which saves a lot of time. I made a double batch (without doubling the salt, as Darby and I try to limit our salt), and mashed half and froze the other half.
  • Baked Oatmeal. I'm not much of an oatmeal fan (texture), but this stuff turns out almost cake-like. As suggested, I subbed unsweetened applesauce for half of the butter. One serving is 7 Weight Watchers points, which isn't terrible, but I might try to reduce the sugar next time I make it to bring the points down even more.
  • Mint-Filled Brownie Cupcakes. These were made pre-Weight Watchers (I don't even want to know how many points are in these babies!), and they were soooo good! Extremely rich. If you like chocolate and mint, you have to try them.
  • Mexican Chicken Kiev. I'm a sucker for stuffed chicken recipes, and this one did not disappoint. The chicken turns out so flavorful and moist. And this was my first foray into the world of Panko crumbs. They are sooo much better than regular bread crumbs; I can't believe I lived without them for so long.