Friday, April 30, 2010

happy friday!!!!

so glad you are here. relaxation starts at 3 today.   i am ready for the party...   going on a road trip... the topic?  life....  and all it has to offer.  heading out to the annual girls weekend!!!!

simple seared scallop salad...

here’s an idea for a super easy meal that can only get better depending on the quality of the ingredients you use.
this takes about 2 minutes to throw together and tastes so fresh and so good i think it’s worth repeating. really, you can throw anything in your salad, the most important thing is cooking the scallops (or shrimp)  right and getting them right on the salad so the greens can absorb the pan juices and get a little wilted and delicious.
toss the scallops with salt, coarse black pepper and curry powder. set aside.
clean the greens, slice up some roasted red peppers with chiles, chop a tiny piece of ginger, throw in some avocado (which i had sitting around, and i love) and whatever else you want.
slice half a shallot nice and thin, mince the other half (for salad dressing)
bring a tablespoon oil (i used grape seed) nice and hot, shimmering but not smoking over medium high heat in a nonstick pan. you want the pan covered, but not swimming, in oil. throw in the shallots and let them get crispy (i like crispy bits, plus it flavors the oil)
the pan should be sizzling when you add your scallops. let the first side get golden brown, about 3-4 minutes, and flip them to the other side using tongs. you want the heat high because you’re cooking it for a short time, so it captures all the flavor on the outside, and the inside will cook, but it will remain juicy (and they’ll cook a bit after you remove them from heat).
place them over your salad, and if you want, pour the pan juices over the salad.
for the dressing, an easy lemon vinaigrette is great: you need good extra virgin olive oil, the juice from a quick squeeze of half a lemon, mix in the shallots, some salt and pepper, and shake it until it emulsifies.


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

everyday has a story...

between the chaos of work, and the inevitable speed-bumps that one encounters on life's road, i have had very little time for relaxation. inspiration. rejuvenation. i feel akin to a limp, musty dish rag.(which i hate)  hanging listlessly off the edge of the sink. i am ready to be washed. dried. and set out afresh.

"magic exists. who can doubt it, when there are rainbows and wildflowers, the music of the wind and the silence of the stars? anyone who has loved has been touched by magic. it is such a simple and such an extraordinary part of the lives we live."
~ Nora Roberts

Monday, April 26, 2010

wishing you bright skies and a day filled with happy...

on this day, you read something that moved you
and made you realize there were no more fears to fear, no tears to cry, no head to hang in shame.
that every time you thought you’d offended someone
it was all just in your head and really, they love you with all their heart and nothing will ever change that.
that everyone and everything lives on inside you
and that that doesn’t make any of it any less real.
that soft touches will change you
and stay with you longer than hard ones.
that being alone means you’re free.
that old lovers miss you and new lovers want you
and the one you’re with is the one you’re meant to be with.
that everything you want to happen will happen
if you decide you want it enough.
that every time you think a sad thought
you can think a happy one instead,
and you control that completely.
that the people who make you laugh
are more beautiful than beautiful people.
that your friends are reflections
of the best parts of you.
that you are more than the sum total of the things you know
and how you react to them.
that dancing is sometimes more important
than listening to the music.
that the most embarrassing, awkward moments of your life
are only remembered by you.
that no one judges you when you walk into a room
and all they really want to know, is if you’re judging them.
that what you make and what you do with your time
is more important than you’ll ever fathom.
that the difference between a job and art is passion
and that neither defines who you are.
that talking to strangers
is how you make friends.
that bad days end
but a smile can go around the world.
that life contradicts itself constantly
and that that’s why it’s worth living.
that the difference between pain and love
is time.
that love is only as real
as you want it to be.
that if you feel good, you look good -
but it doesn’t always work the other way around.
that the sun will rise each day
and it’s up to you each day to match it.
that nothing matters up until this point.
that what you decide now -
in this moment -
will change the future forever.
that rain is beautiful.
and so are you.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

easy cheesy spinach pie...


4 eggs
1 container (16 oz) cottage cheese
1 pkg. (10 oz) frozen chopped spinach, thawed, well drained
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup REAL bacon bits
1/2 cup green onion slices
1/2 of a medium red pepper, cut into thin strips (for garnish- I didn't have one tonight).

preheat oven to 350 degrees. beat eggs lightly in large bowl. add all remaining ingredients except red peppers. mix well. pour into 9 inch pie plate. bake 40 minutes or until center is set. Top with peppers.
how easy is that?! it gets nice and crispy around the edges. i have some good leftovers for tomorrow!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

enjoy the sunrise....

and the day. make it count.  touch the earth with your heart.

april 22, 2010

happy happy birth (earth) day !!!!

Monday, April 19, 2010

tulips and sunshine...

one thing that i love, love, love about having visitors is breakfast.  mom, dad, lynne,  don't you want to visit??  please?  i think that breakfast is one of the nicest ways to make someone feel welcome in your home.
i'm thinking a go-to menu would help with that. and in an attempt to lure more of you to visit me, i'll share a sample menu with you. i'll plan for, shall we say, a week?  you an stay longer if you would like. 

day 1: cinnamon rolls. nothing says welcome like a giant cinnamon roll covered in sugary frosting.

day 2: waffles. even heart shaped.  i would try to make them extra special for guests by including whipped cream and in-season fruit.

day 3:   eggs, hashbrowns, keilbasa and toast. this is one of my favorite breakfasts to order when i  go to rosie's diner. traditional, unpretentious, and hearty enough to get you through an entire breakfast/lunch shift. eggs are cooked to order of course.

day 4: orange scones maybe a little homemade jam on the side.

day 5: eggs benedict. with hollandaise sauce,  of course. i really don't think there is anything else to say.

day 6: pancakes. maybe even whole wheat,  i  can use a variation of this recipe sweetened with a tablespoon of honey.  just gotta add something to the whole wheat. (hey i am trying)

day 7: breakfast burritos. delicious, simple, and easy to carry if you're in a hurry to get to the airport.

of course i would reserve the right to declare any day a Rosie's  day and demand that everybody load up in the car to enjoy a rich diner breakfast with 50's music and all.

love sent,  xo

Saturday, April 17, 2010

many years ago when i first started to make dinners on my own i used to make popovers all the time.
of course,  it was also a time when i could eat popovers every night with dinner and not worry about  it.
it's been so long since i have had one. i came across this recipe and had to try them once again.
(maybe it would have been better if i had not come across this recipe) chewy eggy goodness.

popovers with strawberry butter

it’s so much fun peek in the oven and watch these rise. (remember to serve them hot!)
makes 6
butter, for greasing 6-cup popover tin (you can also use a muffin tin.)

1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs

preheat oven to 425ºF.
grease popover tin.
in a medium bowl, stir together flour, milk and salt.
add eggs, one at a time to combine. (the batter can be a little lumpy.)
pour  cup of batter into greased popover tin.

bake for 20 minutes.

reduce heat to 350ºF and continue baking for another 20 minutes.

remove from pan and serve.

strawberry butter

this butter tastes amazing with anything freshly baked.
makes about 2 cups

1 cup salted butter
1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/2 cup chopped strawberries

using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until creamy.
add strawberries and beat until mixed.

refrigerate until serving.

Friday, April 16, 2010

it's friday!!!

i can't give you a surefire formula for success, but i can give you one for failure: try to please everybody all of the time.
image from the etsy shop daisy chic

Thursday, April 15, 2010

dream day...

a few days ago i wondered what an ideal day would include. since then i have been thinking about it quite a bit (probably too much entirely). for now, this is what i conclude:

i'd wakeup in a white fluffy bed.
birds would be singing and a soft warm light would sneak past the curtains
letting in a warm breeze.
i'd take a long relaxing shower and my hair would look wonderful.
a dreamy dress would be waiting for me in my wardrobe (and it would fit perfectly)
downstairs the house would be entirely picked up.
for breakfast i'd have a vanilla coffee with a warm scone.
out to the mailbox i'd go to find a letter waiting to be read (maybe even a package)
after that i'd go out to the garden and cut beautiful flowers to place all around he house.
i would to to the market (preferably outside) and buy all the freshest
seasonal produce and whip up an amazing lunch.
friends would come over and sit on the deck.
we would lunch lounging on the deck in the sun,and i would photograph them all.
they would leave and i would return inside to write (preferably while sitting in a window seat)
maybe i would go shopping for a while and purchase a scented candle for
the bathroom, maybe even one for the family room so it doesn't feel left out.
evening would come, i would enjoy a nice dinner with wine. (maybe smokehouse steak with balsamic onions).
then we'd ride our bikes down country roads to the old tree on top the hill.
friends would be there and we would drink wine on a quilt and look at the stars and dream.
love sent, xo

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


my personality does not allow me to focus on one thing (it's obvious i should be on medication) and if you are like me and can multi-task then i say don't focus (why limit yourself?). i get easily bored and distracted so i need to do more than one thing at a time, but note,  all of my projects can work together. i figure this blog satisfies my inner publicist and editor, and allows me to connect with like minds. my hunger for creativity is also satisfied in the blog via posting recipes or ideas etc. it also helps me to see other peoples views and ideas, you learn something every day. i have learned  that you can't control what other people think or feel, you only have control of your own feelings. 
by the time you read this, i will be at work and in a meeting with my boss and that can never be good, no matter how much positive energy i put into the thought. i am NOT in a position to just fly my birds and walk out. this work situation is so energy depleting, it sucks everything out of me. the uncertainty of being bought by another company and not knowing where you will land is so frustrating. especially when all they keep saying is business as usual. i want you to know that if you are in the same situation, breathe deeply. the thing is -  i don't want to get another j-o-b. the next move i want to make is working for myself, doing what i want to do, something that makes me not want to go to sleep at night because i can't wait to start the next day and get back to work. i need that.  or maybe we need more companies like this one -  where it can be fun, not so serious all the time.  kisses, xoxo

Monday, April 12, 2010


hope your weekend was relaxing and fun.  i came across this safety video,  it is the cutest ever.


Friday, April 9, 2010

hello friday...

time to do some mental house-keeping.

exercise has never really been my thing.  patti insisits that yoga gives you heart-thumping, liberating, acrobatic, and introspective all at once, this package sounds inviting...i might have to think about it.
think. about. it.

my body is calling out for some cardio–and my soul is begging for peace. i enjoy my alone time, i like listening to music, and am inspired to introduce another healthy habit into my life. i need balance. so what if i have floppy arms? so what if my down dog makes me look like i am bent in the wrong direction. look,  i am really thinking about this. that's probably where it will end.

i'm restless lately, and so very un-peaceful. i still feel like something is lurking around the next corner like a steam-roller who's operator did not look before rolling. absolutely nothing feels right. even my own skin these days. i toss and turn and just can't get comfortable. i feel inspired and motivated on the inside, yet i can't seem to make anything happen on the outside. i'm mismatched, and wrinkled.   i'm not sad, but i'm not happy. i'm 150% impossibly impossible.

the only thing i can come up with is that i'm stuck. very stuck. i'm stuck in a spot, and i have no direction. i need  hope that a direction is going to make itself clear to me.  maybe my soul is too fidgety for such a predicament as this.

big sigh.  xo

Thursday, April 8, 2010

and the mad hatter said to alice...

this is not my type of movie but i love this quote, it  is my favorite out of the entire alice in wonderland movie. it might even deserve to go in my quote book. as soon as i heard it, it put a smile on my face and it made me feel better.

we're all a little bonkers in our own way...   xo

we met by a trick of fate...

i love this song....


Wednesday, April 7, 2010

sparkly with sunshine...

the world seems to have bloomed overnight.  the weather is spectacular and the trees look
so happy.

i dream.
of what has been.
sometimes i dream of what is.
and what may be.
no road map or life plan to follow.
simply meandering here.
with sharp turns there.
and detours.
no one speaks the words
you can't.
you shouldn't.
you won't.
 i dream.
you can.
you should.
you will.
i dream.
of possibility.
forging ahead.
without fear.
skipping, soaring, flying.
worries left far behind.
my load is light.
and my spirit full.

                                               i dream.

                                                                                                                              love sent, xo

Monday, April 5, 2010

Sunday, April 4, 2010

happy easter everyone!!!

hope the bunny is good to you. xo

Saturday, April 3, 2010

easter brunch...

it's a gorgeous day today.  i am off to the grocery store to pick up what i need to prepare my contribution to the easter brunch at my sister's house.
what happens when you take cool crisp butter lettuce top it with honeyed walnuts, fried prosciutto, snap peas, sliced brie, and drizzle a piping hot raspberry dressing over the top? why, pure magic, that's what. this salad combines the best flavors of a budding spring--fresh greens and tender peas--with the comforting flavors and textures of salty prosciuttio and smooth, melty brie cheese. I love it.  i hope you do, too.
i feel terrible that i can't remember the source of the following recipes.

honey sweetened walnuts
1/2 c. raw walnut halves
1 T. honey
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. garlic salt

 in a small, non-stick saucepan, heat all ingredients over medium heat and bring to a simmer, stirring constantly. cook until the honey begins to caramelized and thicken on the walnuts, about 3-5 minutes. transfer to parchment paper and allow to cool.

warm spring salad
5-6 c. butter lettuce, mache or spring greens
4-5 slices prosciutto, cut in strips and flash fried in hot olive oil
1/2 c. snap peas, diced
3 clementines, peeled and sliced thin
6 oz. brie with rind, sliced thin
1/2 c. honey sweetened walnuts

tangy raspberry dressing
1 c. raspberries
1/4 c. honey
1 1/2 T. country dijon mustard
2 T. olive oil
1 T. jalapeno jelly (optional)

in a small saucepan, crush raspberries (I used frozen). add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. drizzle hot dressing over salad.

tart crust. or use pillsbury crust

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
5 tablespoons butter, cold and cut into small slices
3 to 4 tablespoons ice cold water
mix together the flour and salt in a mixing bowl. cut in the butter with a pastry cutter or a fork until the mixture forms pea-sized pieces.
sprinkle 2 tablespoons of water over the flour mixture and toss with fork until moistened. repeat with the remaining water, one tablespoon at a time and gather the dough into a ball with your hand. do not handle the dough too long.
wrap into a sheet of plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. this will allow the dough to relax and make it easier to roll, keeping it from becoming tough.
roll dough on a lightly floured surface, applying pressure from the center to the edges until it is about 12 inches in diameter. cut out six 4 inch circles onto the dough and press them into the tart pans (or one 9 inch pan if making a larger tart). refrigerate while you prepare the filling

leek and mushroom tart
1 1/4 cup leeks, quartered and chopped
1/4 cup red onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
5 ounces mushrooms, thinly sliced
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh tarragon, chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
3/4 cup milk
3/4 cup half and half
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3 eggs
4 ounces gruyere cheese, grated
6 mini tart pans lined with tart crust, recipe below

preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
swirl a medium sized saute pan with a bit of olive oil, about 2 teaspoons. heat over medium high heat until sizzling. add the leeks, onion, and garlic and saute for about 2 minutes. add the mushrooms and saute about 3 minutes more. remove from heat and stir in the parsley and tarragon. divide evenly among the 6 tart crusts and set aside.

combine the salt, pepper, milk, half and half, dijon mustard, and eggs. beat until combined evenly. divide the egg mixture evenly among the 6 tarts and top with grated cheese. Place tarts on a cookie sheet (in case of spills) and bake for 20-30 minutes. cool before removing from pan and serving.

sunshine nectar.

4 parts chilled white zinfandel (for non-alcoholic, kid friendly use FreWines)
2 parts peach nectar
1 part freshly squeeze orange juice
raspberries, fresh or frozen, to garnish drinks

Friday, April 2, 2010

sending you a little hug... xo

millions and millions of years would still not give me half enough time to describe that tiny instant of all eternity when you put your arms around me and i put my arms around you. ~Jacques Prévert

i was looking at these photos and was struck by the emotion that can be expressed with a simple hug. so much can be said by wrapping someone in your arms, whether it's tenderness, passion, sorrow, fear or any other emotion. there truly is something so beautiful about a hug that really means something. i for one am jumping on the hug bandwagon and suggest you do the same. hug your partner, hug your kids, hug your siblings, hug your parents, hug your friends - hugs are food for the soul! have a great day!
love sent,  xo

Thursday, April 1, 2010

chasing the sweet things in life...

since peter cotton tail is hoping down the bunny trail and easter is on its way...
i thought i would share some things i've learned....

  from the easter bunny

don't put all your eggs in one basket.
walk softly and carry a big carrot!
everyone needs a friend that is all ears
there is no such thing as too much candy.
all work and no play can make you a basket case.
cute little tail attracts a lot of attention.
let happy thoughts multiply like rabbits.
share your jelly beans.
good things come in small, sugar coated packages.
the grass is always greener in someone else's basket.
an easter bonnet can tame even the wildest hare.
the best things in life are still sweet and gooey
some body parts should be floppy!