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Archive for July, 2010

Southern Comfort

Lastnight was the start to our weekend.  On a Thursday?  Yep!  Jensen works two Saturdays a month and gets two Fridays off a month.  Today is one of those Fridays.  One of his friends from college came in town from Houston because he is in a wedding this weekend here in Austin.  He stayed with us lastnight and my honey got a little guy time.  Before they left to grab some beers sans the wife (I DO have to work today), I made a meal that can best be described as Southern Comfort.

BBQ and okra are common in southern cooking and they both graced our plates.  I made BBQ chicken sliders from the new Cooking Light Magazine with a side of roasted okra.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 2 sliders)

Ingredients

  • 1/4  cup  thinly sliced red onion
  • 3  tablespoons  sherry vinegar, divided
  • 1 1/2  tablespoons  honey, divided
  • 2  tablespoons  water
  • 3  tablespoons  Dijon mustard
  • 3/4  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 1  tablespoon  butter
  • 1 1/2  pounds  skinless, boneless chicken thighs, trimmed
  • 1/8  teaspoon  salt
  • Cooking spray
  • 8  (1.5-ounce) pull-apart dinner rolls (such as Sara Lee)

Preparation

1. Preheat grill to medium-high heat.

2. Combine sliced onion, 1 tablespoon vinegar, and 1 1/2 teaspoons honey in a small bowl; toss well. Cover and refrigerate onion mixture at least 30 minutes.

3. Combine remaining 2 tablespoons vinegar, remaining 1 tablespoon honey, 2 tablespoons water, mustard, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Bring to a simmer (do not boil). Simmer 5 minutes; stir in butter. Remove from heat; keep warm.

4. Sprinkle chicken with remaining 1/2 teaspoon pepper and salt. Place on a grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 4 minutes on each side or until done. Remove chicken from grill; cool slightly. Shred chicken into bite-sized pieces. Add chicken to saucepan with mustard mixture, and toss gently to coat.

5. Cut rolls in half crosswise. Place rolls, cut sides down, on grill; grill 1 minute or until toasted. Spoon about 1/3 cup chicken mixture over bottom half of each roll. Top each roll with about 1 teaspoon drained onion slices and top half of roll. Serve immediately.

The link has the nutritional info if you are in need.  Again I FAILED on picture taking, but they were cute little guys.  There’s just something fun about bite size sliders vs. regular size sandwiches.
 
The recipe said that the bbq sauce was Carolina-style and as I mixed the ingredients, I noticed there was no red.  Texas bbq sauce is reddish and this was mustard and vinegar based with not a dollop of tomato paste or ketchup in sight.  It was fantastic (I’m a vinegar LOVA), but it made me curious about different bbqs.
 
BBQ-sauces.com was very helpful in my quest.  BBQ sauce styles vary by region.  Here’s what I found.   
 
  • Upper South Carolina and Eastern North Carolina – As stated above, this is usually a thin vinegar based sauce with salt, red pepper, or cayenne pepper added to taste.
  • Lower South Carolina – Home of the yellow mustard and vinegar based BBQ sauce. Sometimes a little ketchup is thrown in too but it is primarily a mustard based sauce.

VS.

  • Texas – Now you’re getting into beef territory. Brisket is king here. Texas is a big state and generally, you’ll find a more spicy BBQ sauce there. East Texas, you might find more sweet sauces with a little bite of chile. Mainly ketchup based with Worcestershire. On the west side of Texas, you run into hotter chili based sauces with a tomato base

Those are just two of the MANY.  The website lists a lot more with slight variations in bases, ingredients, and the meats used.  Who knew?  Actually I sorta did because I seem to remember Bobby Flay educating me on the subject during one of his Throwdowns, but I wasn’t aware there were so many types.  I’m a Texas girl through and through, but I have to say I enjoyed the Carolina style.  Not better, just different.  I can’t commit total blasphemy against my great state, but there’s room in my heart and tummy for both.

Tonight we are switching house guest as the hubs friend moves on to a hotel for wedding festivities and my brother and sister-in-law arrive in town from Dallas.  Yay for a weekend full of friends and family.  Not sure what the plans really are, but it’s nice to just see everyone no matter what we end up doing.  I know we have dinner plans tomorrow night and then a going away party for another friend who is moving to Florida.  It will be packed weekend, but FUN!

What’s your idea of BBQ?  Beef, pork, chicken, ribs?  Tomato based sauce or mustard and vinegar?  Any others?

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Overslept

This morning I overslept.  My alarm went off same as usual and I turned it off and rolled over.  Back to sleep.  I am not a snoozer.  When my alarm goes off, I am immediately up.  I’ve always been that way.  But this morning I was comfortable.  I wanted to linger longer.  So I did.

What did that mean?  Well, for one, my AM cardio has now been moved to PM.  No biggie.  Luckily with my job, my workday is usually over by 4.  There is plenty of time for my workout before dinner.  Number 2.  I had a little more relax time since I didn’t have to rush home from the gym, shower, eat, and head out.  It’s nice and I treated myself to some Clean Eating muesli as a change-up in breakfast.

Looks like a mess. Tastes like a dream!

I confess I did this same thing last Friday.  I had a long day on Thursday with a really early morning and a really long drive and decided to take it easy on Friday morning.  I still did everything on Friday that I do in a normal day, just in a different order.  Namely the workout time.  I am a creature of habit as I have pointed out many times before.  I have a routine.  I get up at the same time (usually even on Saturday since the hubby works a lot of Saturdays), leave for the gym about the same time, get home around the same time, go to work about the same time, go to yoga…about the same time.  You get it.  I like order and routine.  BUT.  Once in a while its nice to take it easy.  Like I said, I will still get in the cardio, work, yoga, etc, but just in a different order.  I may make the once in a while sleep-in and Operation Relaxing Morning on a Random Weekday a once weekly thing.  Or just when I feel like it.  I still like routine.  I haven’t lost my mind.  I just don’t have to stick to the plan all the time.    

Since I have a little extra time, I have two new recipes to post.  The Chicken Enchiladas are courtesy of America’s Test Kitchen The Best Light Recipe Cookbook and were Monday night’s dinner and the Stuffed Shells were lastnight’s fare.  

Chicken Enchiladas – Original recipe serves 6 (I halved it), 2 enchiladas each

     1 medium onion, chopped fine

     1/2 t vegetable oil

     salt

     3 medium garlic cloves, minced

     2 T chili powder

     2 t ground cumin

     2 t sugar (I left this out accidentally but didn’t miss it)

     2 (8 oz) cans tomato sauce

     1 c water

     1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts

     ground black pepper

     8 oz shredded reduced fat cheddar cheese (I used reduced fat mexican blend)

     1 (4 oz) can pickled jalapenos, drained and chopped

     1/2 c minced fresh cilantro leaves

     12 (6 in) corn tortillas

Preheat the oven to 400.  Combine the onion, oil, and 1/2t salt in a large saucepan.  Cover and cook over medium-low heat until the onion has softened, stirring often, about 8 -10 min.  Stir in the garlic, cumin, chili powder, sugar, and cook about 30 sec or until fragrant.  Stir in the tomato sauce and water.  Bring to a simmer and cook until slightly thickened, about 5 min. 

Nestle the chicken into the sauce.  Reduce heat to low, cover,a nd cook until the chicken is no longer pink, 10-12 min (it took mine closer to 20).  Transfer chicken to a plate and allow to cool.  Strain the sauce through a medium mesh strainer over a bowl pressing the onions to extract as much liquid as possible.  Discard the onion (I strained it this time but didn’t the first time I made it.  Good both ways).  Season the sauce with salt and pepper to taste.

Shred the chicken and toss with 1/2 cup sauce, 1 cup cheese, jalapenos, and cilantro and season with salt and pepper.  Warm up the tortillas until pliable.  Place 1/3 c chicken mixture in the middle of each tortilla and tightly roll each tortilla around the filling.  Lay them seam side down in a 9×13 in baking dish.

Nestled in nicely

Lightly spray the tops of the enchiladas with cooking spray.  Pour 1 cup of remaining sauce over the enchiladas and top with 1 cup cheese.  Cover the dish with foil and bake 20-25 minutes.  Remove foil and continue to bake another 5 minutes or until cheese browns. 

Nutritional Info:  Cal: 350     Fat: 10g     Sat Fat: 4.5g     Carb: 37g     Protein: 33g     Fiber: 7g     Sodium: 980mg

I had a hard time getting them out in nice little rolls like at a restaurant.  They tasted FABULOUS anyway! 

Lacking presentation but SO good

Lastnight’s stuffed shells came from Cookinglight.com.  I’m not going to rewrite the whole recipe since it’s well written complete with pictures (since I was too hungry to remember to snap one of my own) if you click the link.  I will note that I did make the homemade marinara on Sunday afternoon and just stuck it in the fridge so that dinner lastnight came together in a flash. 

Thinking ahead

I know a lot of the reviews said they used jarred sauce, so that would work too.  I made half the sauce recipe and still have plenty leftover to use for other goodies.  I also cut the stuffed shells recipe in half (big surprise) but still used the whole clove of garlic.  I would use 2 instead of just one, as the recipe calls for, if I made all 6 servings.

Ok, relaxation over.  Time to work.

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I’m a thief

I have stollen something and I need to get it off my chest. 

I have swiped the idea to tell you a bit about me.  I recently read an inspiring post on Lisa’s blog where she gave us some insight into who she really is.  Then there was Kelly’s post on 10 random facts about her.  I’m giving credit where credit is due so maybe I can give myself a break on the thief part  🙂

I have to say how moved I really was by Lisa’s post.  I’m not a very open person.  My husband has called me stoic more than once.  I cry easily about little things, but the big, hard stuff is held close to the vest.   One of Lisa’s “if you really knew me” was

”  If you really knew me then you’d know that I don’t open up to many people. Only a select few get to know the real me.”

That’s me.  To a T.  I talk all day long and have superficial conversations with acquantances all day long.  I am always happy to give my opinion (often almost compelled) and as I said before, I talk A LOT.  When it comes to political views or opinions on health and nutrition and the hell-in-a-handbasket situation that it is in this country today, I am open and honest almost to a fault.  When it comes to me, however, those emotions, thoughts, fears, and hopes that live in me day in and day out,  I’m very private.  It’s me.  Not a bad thing.  Just me.  But I think I’ll try on this openness and see how it fits.  I’m not gonna go crazy now, but here it goes.

If You Really Knew Me, You’d Know:

  • I sucked my thumb until the 4th grade. 
  • The first thing I do every morning is brush my teeth.  Straight from the bed to the sink.  It comes before my workout, breakfast, coffee, ANYTHING else.
  • Losing my Poppy (grandfather) was the first true grief I ever felt.  My grief manifested itself physically and I threw up every morning for almost 6 months.  I went through many tests and procedures to figure out what was wrong with me until my Marty (grandmother) figured it out and we had a sit down.
  • My family is Scottish and I have a thing for the bagpipes.  Amazing Grace on the bagpipes makes me cry EVERY time and I had bagpipes play as I walked down the aisle at my wedding and as our recessional.  I also wore a scrap of my maiden name’s family tartan (plaid) on the train of my dress.

  • I watch General Hospital.  I have since I was in elementary school when I watched it with my mom and I still DVR it everyday.  It’s my guilty pleasure.
  • When I was growing up, my answer to the “What do you want to be when you grow up?” was the typical little girl response of “a mommy”.  It holds true to this day.  I am a feminist, liberal, strong, independent woman, but all I’ve ever really wanted was to be barefoot and in the kitchen. 
  • I like to be barefoot.  I have a shoe fetish, but prefer to be barefoot when at all appropriate.  I hate socks, too, and only wear them when exercising.
  • My biggest fear is losing my mother.  She is my best friend.  The only one who has known me since the moment I was born.  I believe her when she says she loves everything about me.
  • I appear to be a confident extrovert, but have social anxiety.  I don’t like large crowds and always prefer to be in small groups with people I know.  I fake it well, though.
  • I don’t believe in plastic surgery in principle.  I believe women should love and appreciate themselves and their uniqueness.  However, I would get a boob job in a heartbeat.  The cost and recovery time-off is all that has kept me from it so far.  That is my major body insecurity.
  • I can now admit that I am actually happy with my body.  Even with my itty bitties.
  • I pierced my bellybutton twice.  Once on my senior trip after high school.  I kept it only for the summer before removing it.  I pierced it again (a second hole since they didn’t want to go through the old scar tissue) in college only to take it out a few months later.  Good thing I never got a tattoo.  Clearly permanent would have been an issue.
  • My husband and I talked about marriage after only 4 months of dating when we went to Vegas with friends.  When we got back we convinced several people we got hitched while we were there.  It was pretty funny, but took 5 more years to come true.
  • My husband and I never lived in the same town until after we were engaged (almost 5 years after we met).  We were 2 hours apart for the first 2.5 years and then 2.5 years with him living in the Caribbean and me in Austin.  We moved to the same town and into the same house 4 months before our wedding.
  • My most memorable life moments so far are wedding related.  The first was the feeling of Jensen’s heart beat against my knees as he knelt in front of me to propose.  I was sitting and he dropped down, chest pressed against my legs and I will never forget thinking “wow, his heart is pounding.”  Still makes me smile.  The second is the way I felt the minute the doors opened on our wedding day and I saw Jensen there at the end of the aisle with his classic grin.  I felt beautiful and special on my father’s arm and blessed to be marrying that man.  I still feel that way.
  • My biggest accomplishment so far is finishing a marathon.  My brother and dad split it, each doing half with me, as support and it was very special.
  • I don’t like papaya.  Actually, I despise papaya.  It smells AWEFUL!  I also don’t like melons (watermelon, cantaloupe, or honeydew).  I call them filler fruits because they are the cheap fruits that fill most fruit bowls.  You’re lucky to get a grape or heaven forbid a berry of some sort in one of those things.
  • I’m a burrower when I sleep.  Even in the middle of summer, I want a big cozy comforter.  I’d rather turn the air way down and snuggle in the bed than sleep with just a sheet.  That being said, I’m a hot sleeper.  I often have night sweats and I don’t like to cuddle once it’s time to actually sleep.  I need space.
  • I like my feet.  Each callous and rough patch is there for a reason.  HARD FREAKIN WORK!  I’m proud of every one.
  • I care what my running shoes look like.  I know that comfort and performance are more important and I rely on those when choosing shoes, but I am happier with the choice if I like the color.
  • My favorite book ever is the Red Tent.  Not sure why, but I have read it 4 or 5 times. 
  • I have an all paths to God sorta view of religion.  I am a Christian and believe whole heartedly in the things I was taught growing up and plan to raise my children with those teachings.  However, I believe if I had been born in another family of another religion, I would have believed whole-heartedly in those teachings.  I believe in believing in something, but maybe we just all call that something a different name.  I clearly don’t have the answers.
  • My biggest pet peeve is intolerance, judgement, racism, sexism, prejudice, stereotypes.  If it doesn’t directly affect your life, why do you care what others are doing?  Is it so bad if people are different from you?  That being said I suffer from ageism from time to time with elderly drivers and our nosey little old lady neighbors.
  • I truly wish I could paint or sing or have some other really cool talent.  I always struggle when the “tell us something interesting about yourself” team building, get-to-know-you game comes up.
  • I wish I had a career as a yoga instructor, nutritionist, or some other health and fitness field.  It’s a dream. You’d also know I’m not a risk taker and though I am not passionate about my job and would love to do something else, I am comfortable in it and am quite frankly good at it.
  • I’m an extreme creature of habit in almost all areas except my hair.  I color it and change the style often and get antsy if its the same way for too long.  I don’t even know what my real hair color is anymore.
  • I love my husband more than I ever thought was possible to love someone not blood related to me.  I feel very lucky.  I often say I don’t NEED my husband, which some people think sounds harsh.  But I don’t need him, I want him.  I choose him.  To me that is a bigger compliment.  My life would not be the same without him.  I don’t just need someone, I want him specifically.   

Ok, thats’ enough for now.  Any questions?  🙂  Tell me about you.

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Workin Out of the Rut

Ok, so clearly I have been in a blogging rut lately. Other than my drive to and from South Padre last week which was documented in a timely manner, my life has been more of the same ole.  I’m not complaining.  I like my life and it’s routine.  I’m just not sure that it’s all that interesting to others.  Sorry for being absent so much lately.  

I have a few things to note from the weekend, though.  Jensen and I watched two movies and tried out 1 new restaurant.  On Saturday evening, we went to a fairly new restaurant to Austin and brand new to us.  Zocalo.  It is a taqueria decorated in a very modern style.  Think bright white, lime green (hello, does it get any better  🙂 ) , and very minimalist with extremely fresh food.  It was wonderful!  We sat on the porch and enjoyed each others company.  It actually wasn’t deathly hot for once and being outside was nice.  

Even though I am a Texan through and through, I am much more a fan of interior Mexican, South American type fair than the Tex-Mex that is on every corner around here.  It has its place with its dishes covered in queso, chili con carne and GREASE, but cilantro, cabbage, corn tortillas over flour, and black beans instead of pinto are more up my alley and this place had it all. 

I had the Tacos de Carnitas with pulled pork.  They were tiny little corn tortillas (made fresh in-house) with pulled pork, cilantro, and pineapple.  Black beans were nestled on the side and the hubby and I also got ceviche to share.  The icing on the cake was a Modelo Especial.  When it comes to beer, I admit I’m a bit of a snob.  If I’m going to have a beer, it has to be a GOOD beer.  No light, tasteless brew for me.  Modelo Especial is one of my faves especially when accompanying South of the Border grub.

After filling our bellies, we headed home and rented Green Zone with Matt Damon.  War movie #1 of the weekend.  It was really good.  I like Matt Damon, though, so maybe I’m biased.  I know some people had issues with it because of the political aspects.  You know, the government lied to us or its all a conspiracy type-stuff.  I pay little attention to all of that, so I had no ill feelings toward the “message” of the movie.  It’s a MOVIE.

Ok, war movie #2.  Yesterday evening, we were again in the mood for a flick.  It had been a wonderful, lazy Sunday and we could think of nothing better to end it with than curling up on the couch with a movie.  Enter Inglourious Basterds

BLOODY!  It was definitely gory, but enjoyable none the less.  It is Quintin Tarantino afterall, so you have to go in with some expectations of foul language and over-the-top violence.  It might be disappointing otherwise.  It was good.  Not a movie I’d watch over and over (or probably ever again), but I did like it.  I have to say, Brad Pitt’s good looks aside, he is a great actor.  Kinda like Keanu Reeves…HAHAHAHAHA!  Just kidding.  Sorry Keanu  🙂 

Ok, I’m out for the night.  I’ll try to get back on a regular blogging sched.

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I made it!

Well, I made it home safe and sound lastnight.  The trip back took a bit longer for several reasons.  The major rainstorm I was in for a good hour requiring slowing down to 40 MPH in a 70, the numerous and necessary gas stations stops for leg stretching and waking up (there were some slightly scary almost asleep moments on the road), and the traffic I hit as I rolled into Austin during 5:30 rush hour all added up to an extra hour/hour and a half.

I finally made it home around 6:45 PM ( I left at 11:15 AM), and ate some dinner while watching the results show for So You Think You Can Dance.  I use the term dinner lightly.  The husband wasn’t home, so my “dinner” was a Western Bagel Alternative blueberry bagel with low fat cream cheese.  It hit the spot and was easy.  Plus I wasn’t terribly hungry after my pretzel, peanut M&M, and CornNut attempts at staying awake on the drive.  Eating crunchy things and at least a dozen pieces of gum did the trick for most of the way, though I feel a bit swollen and soft today after all the salt, sugar, and carbs.  Oh well.  Staying awake seemed like a bigger goal than watching the intake and I’ll sweat it all out in yoga today anyway.  Nothing a little sweat session and some MAJAH water intake can’t fix. 

The other thing is I drink a lot of water.  Even when traveling.  This means stops for pee breaks are necessary even if I don’t need a moment to open my eyes.  I have a thing with stopping to use someone’s restroom and not buying something.  Is that weird?  I always feel like I need to at least get a little something at the gas station rather than running in, using their facilities, and bailing.  CornNuts, M&Ms, and pretzels all bought at separate gas stations along the way was the result. 

When I was growing up and we were on a road trip, we each got to choose one thing at the gas station to snack on.  My parents were pretty good about healthy eating, but road trips were the exception.  Sort of.  We always packed lunchmeat, bread, fruit, veggies, etc in a cooler and stopped at rest stations to make our lunches along the way.  I’m sure this was as much financial as health conscious.  Plus it gave us kids a chance to run around a bit.  I’m sure that was a major goal for the parents.  We did get our gas station treats, though, and I always chose peanutbutter crackers.  You know, the ones with the orange crackers.  Why orange?  Is that supposed to symbolize cheese?  With penautbutter?  Definitely synthetic.  But yummy!  My mom always got CornNuts and she shared.  Those flavors remind me of family roadtrips to this day.

Typically I don’t stray much from my normal eating habits when out of town.  I always take apples, nuts, and protein bars when I travel and choose healthy when eating out.  Actual time in the car is a different story.  I get bored and sleepy.  Snacking is the remedy.

What is your roadtrip treat of choice?/Do you eat differently when you travel?

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Sorry I was MIA yesterday, but I spent the majority of the day in the car.  I had to get down to South Padre Island for work and so after a good run and yoga session to get my head in the right place, I hopped in the car.  I will never be a road tripper and yesterday just solidified that.  Want to know what I got to look at all day?

view from the car window

Don’t get me wrong there are some REALLY beautiful parts of Texas, but the drive through South Texas from Austin to South Padre Island is not one of them.  Flat farmland and long stretches of nothing for hours.  My mass consumption of liquids actually became a problem on several occasions.  Even gas stations and their nasty, I’m desperate for anywhere to pee bathrooms were few and far between.  Luckily I had downloaded Twilight:  Breaking Dawn on my ipod and so had someone reading to me as I drove.  It did the trick in keeping me awake.  As did the random what-do-I-see-in-the-clouds game I played periodically with myself.  I have already read Breaking Dawn but it was a while ago.  I wanted to read it again before the movie (or movieS as is the rumor) came out, so I thought this would be the perfect time.  I had a 6 hour drive to Padre and 6 back home tomorrow, so I will get through most of it on this trip.

While most of the drive was, well, less than attractive, once I came upon the bridge that connects Port Isabelle on the mainland to Padre Island, the scenery improved.  Unfortunately I only had about 10 more minutes to drive at that point.  Anyway, back to the positive.

Almost there!

I arrived around dinner, checked-in, ran by the hotel restaurant and grabbed half a pound of peel and eat shrimp (every last one of which I ate) and a salad, and headed up to the room.  When I walked in I immediately felt like I was part of a Golden Girls episode.  What is it about beach front properties that feel the need to take the tropical theme to the extreme?

curtains

bathroom wallpaper

lamp

I was waiting for Dorothy, Blanche, Sophia, or Rose to pop out any minute and ask if I wanted to have some lemonade on the lanai.  I guess its par for the course when you consider that every other store is a  tourist shop with a shark mouth as the entrance selling sand and Hawaiian print shirts and the local gym even has a pirate ship theme.

Even the gym?

I have to say, though, that my room does have a nice view of the beach and ocean.

Ocean front

I got up this morning and took a nice 5.5 mile (ish, going by time) run on that beach and am now sitting back in my tropical room watching Regis and Kelly with a piping hot nonfat latte.  I don’t have to be anywhere until noon, so its nice to have a bit of time to relax and unwind today after my road trip and the one I will be making again tomorrow.  Oh boy.  I already can’t wait.

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Whatta Weekend!

Weekends definitely fly by way too fast.  Maybe I should put a petition together to enact a 3 day weekend and 4 day workweek standard.  that’s much better balances, I think 🙂

My weekend was wonderful!  Friday night was nice and relaxing at home.  We had a home cooked dinner of tilapia topped with a simple avocado mango mixture (with some onion and lime juice thrown in) and a side of oven roasted okra.  Then it was couch time with my honey before a a typical early to bed (same as most weeknights) since he had to get up for work on Saturday.

Saturday we had the pleasure of joining fab friends Kelly and Keith at one of their favorite restaurants, Bartlett’s, for dinner.  My husband, Jensen, and Keith had worked hard in Kelly and Keith’s yard all afternoon (while Kelly and I browsed blogs at our respective homes and I also got in some pool time.  So helpful.  🙂 )  and they were more than ready for a yummy dinner.  Success!  We were all pleased with the food and the company was tops!

The downside was we came home to no AC.  In TEXAS!  In THE SUMMER!  It wasn’t really that hot in the house because it was on when we left and clearly hadn’t been off for too long.  I went to turn it down for bed and the thermostat was blank.  Uh – oh!  Sleeping in the heat is damn near impossible and I was worried about getting anybody to come over to fix it the next day on a Sunday.  I felt like a vampire.  I was stressing about the sun coming up.  I knew the sauna-like effects would be almost immediate.

Luckily it kicked on about 4am, though by 8 when we woke up soaking in sweat it had clearly gone off again.  Back on at 10:30 and off again by 1.  When I woke up feeling like I’d just gone for a run, I high-tailed it out the back door, phone in hand, to call the number on the unit.  I did make a pit stop at the coffee maker on the way out the door so at least I could have that luxury.  Yes, I wanted coffee even in the heat.  It’s a problem.  One I readily admit and am just fine with than you very much  🙂 

I got ahold of the repair man, who was going to come over after noon, and headed back in the house.  Coffee EVERYWHERE!  What the F***?!  Jensen was standing in the kitchen, looked at me with a perplexed look, and said “Why do our appliances hate us?”  It made me laugh and I was once again reminded of why I love him so much.  Calm and cool when I would have flown off the handle.  We cleaned up the coffee, I successfully made another pot and the air-conditioning guy showed up a little after 1.  Major crisis averted.  The random off-and-ons (more importantly the ons) kept it from ever getting much above 78 in the house.  Bearable.

I was overall proud of myself for not getting too worked up over it all and we actually had a nice Sunday.  Lastnight we went to one of our favorite restaurants, Parkside,  for their Summer Night Dinner.  They joined together with a local brewery, Independence Brewery, and created a fun atmosphere with a wonderful tasting menu and beers to compliment each dish. 

The menu

We bought tickets weeks ago and were really excited to go.  There were about 80 people there and they had big tables set up seating 10 or so each.  It was fun to sit with people we’d never met and we actually made a new couple friend that is around our age and moved here recently from Miami.  The others at the table all had great stories, too, and we had  a blast!  It’s fun to get out of your comfort zone and try something new.

My favorite beers were the Freestyle Wheat and the Austin Amber.

Freestyle Wheat

Austin Amber

The food was ridiculous and though I really know very little about beer, I think the pairings worked well.  Whatever 🙂  I really know nothing.  But I liked it.  Oh, and the pretzel icecream….INSANE!!!!!!!!!!  Sweet and salty heaven.

How was your weekend?

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