A Wedded Weekend

On Saturday, my fiancé and I set out to conquer more to-dos on our wedding list. With my mom in toe, we headed up to a florist near our venue to discuss flowers. This is the second florist we’ve met with, and we’re meeting with one more before making a final decision. It’s really hard, because I’m not super picky when it comes to flowers; I don’t have a favorite flower, for example, and I’m really clueless about them too. So, I’m really looking for someone that can use their creativity and the little bit of input I have to make something gorgeous. All I know is that I want bright beautiful green and yellow in my bouquet, with more muted colors for my girls since they’ll be in green. As for centerpieces, I just want something low, and bright. Maybe like this…

After meeting with the florist, we headed to the hotel where we’ll be booking a block of rooms for ourselves and our guests. By booking with that hotel, we also get a deal on transportation for all of our guests to and from the venue, which was extremely important to us. We’re also in the process of finalizing our invitations… Things are starting to come together!

On Sunday, we spent the morning trying to clean up our townhouse, since I have my bridesmaids coming next Saturday for their dress fitting! After that we headed out for a run. We still have it on our heads that we’ll be “running” the half marathon April 17th, and I think my fiancé finally realized that it’s something we’ll be doing together, slowly. On Thursday after my 4-miler, I noticed that when I accidentally hit my shin, I felt pain. Pain very similar to my shin splints in December. Low and behold, I’m definitely on the road to get shin splints again. This time, though, I’m not ignoring it and I’m icing, compressing, rolling, and not increasing my mileage like crazy. I was supposed to run 6 miles Sunday, but kept it at 4 just to be safe. I’ll try and tackle 6 on Tuesday, followed by 2 on Thursday. I can’t seem to catch a break with these injuries!

Since we’re back to running, I’ve welcomed yummy desserts back into our routine. On Sunday evening, I decided to make How Sweet Eats’ Triple Layer Cookies & Cream Crunch Bars. Ohh yes – they were absolutely amazing. Of course, they didn’t look quite like Jessica’s, but they tasted awesome! Everything she puts on her blog looks so scrumptious; I wish I could be that creative in the kitchen. And checkout the sweet plate – these awesome Maleficent (from Cinderella) plates were on sale at Target for 75 cents! So I scored four!

This week’s kitchen adventures were first squashed when, again, the avocados at ShopRite were nowhere near ripe. I’m hoping they’ll be ready sometime this week to use in other recipes, but the homemade sushi I was planning on making Sunday night was a no-go. Maybe next week. But, I’ll be making some veggie burgers and sweet potato fries, falafel, and finally the huevos rancheros I wanted to make last week. Maybe I’ll even bake something else!

Working Weekend

Ever have one (or multiple) of those days where you feel like you just don’t stop going and going? Well, that’s how my weekend felt! I’m certainly not complaining, but it left me little time to spend in the kitchen.

On Friday after work, a group of us decided to go to a local Mexican restaurant for happy hour to take advantage of the 70+ degree weather, where they have $2 Sol beers all day, every day. Conveniently, that’s also the name of the restaurant. We wound up hanging out for a solid 3 hours, and ordered some nachos and stuffed jalapenos – delicious! By the time we got home, we were zonked, so fiancé and I each grabbed a slice of pizza from our local pizzeria that we pass on the way home, and caught up on the excess TV we hadn’t finished from Thursday night.

Saturday was all business, but it started out with the fiancé making buttermilk pancakes! While I love cooking, it’s always appreciated when someone else does it for me. After fueling up and enjoying an episode of DC Cupcakes, I hit the books. Four hours later I came up for air, just in time to head to the grocery store! On our trip I picked up some leeks for a recipe later this week. Little did I know that they were about $4 each, and I grabbed two. Holy moly they are expensive! This feta, leek, and potato tart I’m making on Thursday better be delicious. Dinner was a quick peanut stir-fry that I was too hungry to photograph. We then went to see Paul, which was absolutely hilarious, and stopped to take some pictures of the “super moon.”


Sunday, the “day of rest” was far from it. I was up early to head to my parent’s to meet with a potential wedding florist. After my mom and I did that, we stopped at my favorite bagel spot, Bagel Chateau, where I picked up what I think is one of their best sandwiches. I know it’s New Jersey so everyone assumes we all love “pork roll” or “Taylor ham”… but I’m not a fan. Instead, I got what they call a “dutch,” which is a mixture of eggs, potatoes, and cheese served up on your bagel of choice. It was just what I needed to fuel my run! After a trip to Trader Joe’s my mom and I headed to the park to get our run on. My mom is new to running, so I was super psyched to see her finish an entire mile without stopping! I did three, which is a great feat considering my foot. I’m starting to think I’m back in the running game, but I don’t want to jinx it. I then headed home to finish up even more homework.


Homework Nerd Alert!


Where was my fiancé during my super busy Sunday, you may ask? Oh, he was just completing his Rita’s Ice Tour, 2011 edition. Last year, I too accompanied him on the adventure, but couldn’t due to my schedule this year. They stopped at 14 Rita’s and sampled a different flavor at each. Head over to his blog to read about it!

I really slacked on Sunday night’s dinner, too. I headed up some Gardin chipotle lime “chicken” strips, and paired it with some southwestern hash-browns. The hash-browns were a nice gussied-up version of just plain ‘ole pan-fried potatoes, and I think would go well at any time of day. Yum!

Southwestern Hash-Browns
– Serves 4 –

4 cups frozen hash-browns
1 yellow onion, diced
1/2 cup black beans
1/2 cup corn
1 Tbsp chili powder
1 Tbsp Adobo
1 tsp cumin
1 Tbsp taco seasoning
6 Tbsp cooking oil

1.  Preheat skillet with 3 Tbsp of cooking oil. Add a layer of hash-browns to cover the skillet (2 cups). Cover, and let cook for 12 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, in another skillet, preheat 2 Tbsp oil, add sauteed onions, and cook for 5 minutes until onions begin to become translucent. Add black beans and corn, and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Set aside.
3. After 12 minutes, flip the hash-browns, and cook an additional 2-3 minutes. Set aside.
4.  Repeat steps 1 and 3.
5. Combine the hash-browns and bean mixture back in the skillet, and cook for 2 minutes.