Monthly Archives: May 2011

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How did it get to be so late? This evening was really productive, but I feel like I got home and then the next time I looked at the clock it was 10:30. Sheesh.
=)

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Memorial Day Celebrations

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It’s Memorial Day and despite the fact the it’s been in the upper-90s everyday for the last week and a half it’s the official start of summer. This is the weekend when everyone migrates to the beach or a family bar-b-que or anywhere else to escape the heat. It’s a fun and celbratory weekend that previews all that summer has to offer. But, behind all the cocktails, food, fun, sun, and summery-ness there is the actual reason we celbrate Memorial Day. So thank you to the servicemen who have given everything to serve and protect our country. Thank you to the families who have send their loved ones into battle. Thank you.

Busch Gardens

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I went to Busch Gardens for the first time in a bazillion years today. It was a looong day, but a lot of fun:
-We rode Cheetah Hunt, the new roller coaster that just opened earlier the week.
– I rode Sheikra for the first time
– We got stuck on first incline on Montu for about a half hour (I have not decided if this was awesome or terrifying.)
– We saw some animals; including cheetahs, lions, and giraffes (the giraffes are my favorite).
=)

Black-Eyed Peas and Tomatoes

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I can’t believe it’s almost June. Seriously y’all wasn’t it just New Years? I guess time really does just zoom on by while you’re living life. I feel like I haven’t really been a blogger that long, so it’s funny to look through my files and think how long ago it was. I cooked this way back when I first start the blog (which accounts for the crap photo) with every intention of featuring it as part of ‘Meatless Monday’, but that never really got off the ground. So here’s a hearty, spicy, yum-tastic meal that’s perfect for a balmy summer night.

Black-Eyed Peas and Tomatoes
Adapted from A Little Bit Crunchy A Little Bit Rock n’ Roll

2 Tablespoons I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter Light
1/2 medium onion , diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tablespoons crushed red pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
2 bay leaves
2 Cans black-eyed peas (15oz each), rinsed and drained
2 quarts vegetable stock
28 ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained
3 Tablespoons tomato paste
salt and pepper
Cornbread, one batch of your favorite recipe

1. In a large pot heat the butter and add the onion and a pinch of salt.  Cook until translucent. Add the garlic, red pepper flakes, thyme and bay leaves and cook for another minute.
2. Add the black-eyed peas, broth, tomatoes, tomato paste, salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and cook until the mixture is hot throughout and the beans are tender.  
3. Add more broth if needed, but you want this to be the consistency of a thick stew.
4. If the beans are two liquidy, remove the lid to allow some of the liquid to evaporate.
5. Serve beans over crumbled cornbread.

Serves: 4 WW P+: 6 (for beans only)
=)

Zero Dark Thirty

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I’m getting up at zero-dark-thirty tomorrow morning. I’m meeting some friends at 8am (on my day off) to go running. I realize this isn’t actually that early, but it’s earlier than I would usually be up on a Saturday morning. The point of this is that I’m having a relaxed, boring night tonight.
=)

Ready to Run

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Thursday nights is the local pub run. It’s a 5k-ish run that takes place at Wiregrass Mall. The run is followed by pizza and beer at The Brass Tap. After an evening like that, I’m definitely ready to get some sleep.
=)

Easiest Chocolate Cupcakes

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I love chocolate. I love cake. I especially love peanut butter; as in I will sit down with a jar and a spoon and eat peanut butter. So when BFFMandy asked for Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting for her birthday, I knew exactly what I would make. This cake starts with a mix and could not be simpler. I know that cake mix gets a bad rap, but let’s just be honest for a minute…sometimes I just don’t have time to make scratch cake in the middle of the week (unless I want to be up till 1AM…but that’s another cupcake and another story); and these cupcakes freaking ROCK!

Easiest Chocolate Cupcakes
Adapted from The Cake Mix Doctor
1 Chocolate Cake Mix ( 18.25 Oz) (no pudding in the mix or other add-ins please!)
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1 cup buttermilk
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Line your cupcake pans with liners; this recipe makes approximately 30 cupcakes. 
2. Empty the contents of the cake mix into a large mixing bowl. Add eggs, butter, buttermilk, and vanilla. Beat with a mixer on low for 30 seconds, then on medium for a minute and thirty seconds. 
3. Use a medium ice cream scoop to fill the prepared cupcake liners three-quarters full. 
4. Bake according to package directions; approximately 20-25 minutes. 
5. Let cupcakes cool completely before frosting. 

Side Note: I placed a miniature Reese’s Cup in the center of each cupcake before baking.
Side Note 2: Try this with any cake mix, it’s super easy, quick, and tasty. 

Peanut Butter Frosting
Adapted from Food.com
1 cup butter (2 sticks), softened. 
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons milk (I used unsweetened Almond Milk in the cupcakes pictured above)
Pinch of table salt

1. In a medium bowl, beat butter and peanut butter with a mixer on medium until smooth and creamy. 
2. Add salt, beat an additional 30 seconds.
3. Add powdered sugar, beat on low speed until mixture is totally combined. 
4. Add vanilla extract and milk. Beat on low until combined, about 15 seconds. 
5. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then increase mixer speed to high and beat until frosting is light and fluffy. This may take several minutes.

Yum!

=)

Tuesday: Weight Watchers Day

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Starting Weight: 247.4
Weight Last Week: 223.2
Weight This Week: 223.2

No change this week. I actually expected a gain; related to all the junk I ate over the weekend. So I’m pretty happy with the maintain.
On a side note, I finally got a memory card reader and uploaded a bazillion pictures…including stuff I forgot I made. I’m excited.
=)

Looking for…

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The cord to my camera is still missing -grumble-. Which is really disappointing because I’ve got tons of recipes and food to share. I guess I’ll go to Best Buy and see about getting a memory card reader until I find the damn cord. -grumble-

Overslept

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I forgot to blog last night…well technically I didn’t forget, I just fell asleep before I did it. At like 10 o’ clock with the TV on and my book open. I woke up at around 5AM and thought I was awfully lucky that I didn’t over sleep for work. Then I realized it was Sunday and went back to sleep.
On a brighter note I walk/ran 4miles this afternoon…It was ridiculously HOT. Like 100 degrees out. I will now stick to running inside or later in the evening.
=)