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WIAW {05/04/16}

It’s been way too long since I did a WIAW post! These are always some of my favorite posts because I love sharing the ingredients and foods I am currently digging, and hopefully give all of you some culinary ideas. Some of my favorite blogs to read, I stumbled upon through WIAW posts. So here is a look at Sunday’s eats.

Weekends are rough when it comes to food. I had a bowl of Special K poured and before I added the milk I started craving an omelet stuffed with red onion, tomatoes, and avocado.

20160501_094724I just love weekend breakfasts. Nolan sleeps in past 10 most weekends but my internal clock gets me up at 6:30 regardless of the day (or time zone as I discovered in Colorado!) I really enjoy taking the time to make myself a hot breakfast while watching the morning news. During the week by breakfasts are pre-made or grab and go which is very convenient but not the same as something hot and fresh. Plus, cooking always relaxes me and helps me de-stress which is the perfect way to start a weekend.

Sunday afternoon we were out at open houses most of the day, and by 2:00 I was STARVING After a late afternoon trip to Trader Joe’s where I bought way too much, I snacked on a few handfuls of these in the car….Okay. most of the bag is gone.  If you haven’t tried them, do it, they are sooo good!

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As I mentioned in Sunday’s post, I was really hoping to make something fun with Nolan for dinner. We wandered around the grocery store for quite some time because as always we were being very indecisive. “Let’s see if the meat speaks to us.” Nolan decided. Oh how I love that man. :-)  Finally we decided we both really wanted stuffed mushrooms! I raided the produce section while Nolan picked out some ground sausage and cheese. But then we got to the final aisle in the grocery store and Nolan spotted the pizza dough and decided he needed pizza. “Stuffed mushroom …….pizza?!” I proposed and Nolan’s face lite up. We changed the plan and created….

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Stuffed mushroom pizza! OH.MY.GAWD was this pizza incredible. This was easily, EASILY one of the best things we have made in a long time. It was the perfect combo of salty and savory. I will post the recipe soon but I will leave you with this…sausage, mushrooms, bacon.

The pizza kept us pretty full until about 7pm. I was feeling ambitious so I made myself a little ghetto wine plate and started working on progress reports.

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Yes, I had some wine on a Sunday night – along with a handful of TJ’s reduced guilt pita chips, green grapes and a serving of Laughing Cow. Perfect little bedtime snack. :-)

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In The Last 4 Years

Last month, Savor Life’s Flavors celebrated it’s 4 year anniversary. How is THAT possible?! I started my blog as a way to share my cooking habits and recipes as well as a place for me to vent and share about my life. I never thought I would still be sharing these things 4 years later.

In the past 4 years I have grown quite a bit. As easy as it is to focus on and point out the negative, so many positive things have happened that have shaped me and my family.

  • I got married. When I first started blogging, I was going through the process of planning a wedding. That is soo hard for me to believe because I feel like Nolan and I have been married for decades. I wish that I could accurately show his greatness on my blog and articulate just how much love and fun we have together.

  • I landed my dream job. I love going back and re-reading my posts from 2012. When I started blogging I was a 1:1 teaching assistant and a bit miserable. Teaching today is impossibly frustrating in your 20s. Hundreds of people apply to each job opening, and most of what’s available to young teachers are in terrible school districts with little to no $ or support. I have been beyond lucky to end up where I am -a 5th grade teacher in an amazing school in an impeccable school district. I look back at those posts from 4 years ago, hell even 2 years ago and I remember how stressful it was to be 26 and still making less than $20,000 a year, with a masters degree. But 3 weeks into my first year teaching, my dad died and I have really let that overshadow the fact that I am one of the luckiest young teachers in Massachusetts. That loss stole a lot of the enjoyment I had earned and waited for since I was 10 years old and dreaming of having my own classroom. I have been trying to be more reflective and grateful that the professional piece of my puzzle is complete!

  • I have gotten healthy. If you have been a SLF reader since the beginning, you know that 2012-2013 were difficult times for me health wise.  I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism and it took a long time to get my med/symptom ratio right. Every 6 weeks I was getting blood work done and experiencing a roller coaster of mood swings and emotions. My blog became a helpful place for me to vent and open up about my anxiety and frustration.  Since then I have found a treatment that works for me and my thyroid is not standing in my way!12417586_10100373759440335_870266670289401204_n
  • Friendships- Through blogging I have met and made so many new friends that have helped me (whether they know it or not!) in many ways over the past few years. In my “real life” some friendships have grown, and others have ended for one reason or another. Your priorities really change between the ages of 24 and 28, and with those changes in what’s important come the changes in who you surround yourself with. I am really lucky to have such great, strong friendships with people who care about me and have contributed to my happiness.

My favorite part of having a blog is going back and reliving some of my favorite experiences. It’s also a great way to perspective take and remember the not so great times and how far my life has come. I am excited to keep blogging through the next phase- becoming a home owner and eventually a parent. :-)Here’s to the next 4 years!

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A Look at This Week’s Eats

Did this week fly by for anyone else?! Monday morning was rough, but my week went surprisingly well and very fast. My class has really started to come together (took 3/4 of the school year!) and I am really having fun with my kiddos. We took a field trip to the middle school on Thursday and it really hit me-I’m going to miss these kids! :-( However- 36 more days until summer vacation!!!!!!

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Onto the food!

Last Sunday night we were pretty wiped after a long night/day of traveling. I napped during the day, (well coma-ed for 2 hrs) so I was pretty wide away at my usual bedtime. Since we napped instead of going grocery shopping there was nothing for me to eat for breakfast and lunch during my work week. So instead of queuing up another episode of  Law and Order SVU I headed into the kitchen to see what I could scrounge up.

I took out a pound of ground turkey that I had in the freezer and used it between two dishes.

For breakfasts, I whipped up some egg muffins filled with ground turkey, cheddar cheese, and red pepper, because that’s all I had for fresh veggies. I made 10 of these little guys and enjoyed 2 for breakfast each day.

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With the other 3/4 pound of group turkey, I made a lame but delicious soup. We still have a bag of turkey stock leftover from Thanksgiving, yes Thanksgiving, that I keep frozen. I chipped off a hunk of frozen stock as a base and added a can of diced tomatoes and various spices. Then I threw in the ground turkey, a ton of my favorite frozen veggy blend (carrots, peas, corn, green beans, Lima beans) and a handful of egg noodles that I found on top of the fridge!

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It was pretty simple but it kept me full all week long.

Dinners were also pretty simple this week. We are full on house searching right now and that has taken about 1000% of our attention so dinners have really been after thoughts.

Monday’s dinner….

Yes, that’s frozen yogurt. Mango cream frozen yogurt topped with mangos and cheesecake bites. I did go on a 2 1/2 mile walk BEFORE I ate this, but needless to say I went grocery shopping right after this “dinner”. I ended up having a little salad once I got home, but the fro yo was the star of the meal. :-)

Tuesday I had my final class of the semester (HORRAY!!!!) so Nolan was in change of dinner. I pulled out a bag of chicken thighs from the freezer before I left for work so he would have something to work with. When I got home I was greeted by the smell of dinner cooking-nothing better! I’m really not sure what Nolan put on these thighs but of course there was some serious spice! On the side we had a combo of two steamable-microwave-sides one that was a spicy rice blend, and one side of broccoli cauliflower, red peppers, and carrots. 20160426_190531

Wednesday was my parents 31st wedding anniversary, which has become a rather sad day since my dad died. There was no way we were going to let Mom celebrate all alone so Chris and I headed overafter work and made a big dinner for the 3 of us. Homemade shrimp scampi with asparagus. YUM
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This was really a week of festivities! Thursday was Nolan’s 29th birthday (How are we getting this old?!) Since we just got back from our vacation and we are saving for a house we didn’t do much in the way of celebrating. Nolan’s always very laid back about birthdays and only has one simple request- great food for dinner. We had volleyball after work and on the way home we stopped to pick up a giant buffalo chicken calzone from Nolan’s favorite local pizza place for dinner.

Beer + buffalo chicken= happy birthday boy!

Friday I joined some friends for drinks after work, so dinner consisted of a few Harpoon IPAs and many handfuls of popcorn. I was asleep on the couch by 7:30-crazy Friday night!

Yesterday we met with our realtor and had a few private showings of available properties around town which took up most of our day. Nolan headed out to spend the evening with some friends, while I got to work on one of my 2 final papers I need to write for my classes which all just came to an end. Dinner was a simple bowl of shells and pasta sauce and a glass of wine.

I am hoping that after the open houses we plan to attend today, Nolan and I can spend some time in the kitchen making something fun. It’s been a while since the two of us worked on a recipe together and I am craving something fun and delicious today. :-)

 

 

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Monday Montage {4/25/16}

Mondays are sooo hard. Mondays after school vacation weeks are awful. Mondays after school vacation on 8 hrs sleep in 48 hrs is THE WORST.

Ok, ok that’s being a tad dramatic. 😉 Nolan and I had the best time on our vacation. Colorado is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. We spent time in Denver, Boulder, Fort Collins, Morrison, and Golden and each city had something special to offer.   I will do a more detailed post but here were some of the highlights.

Red Rocks

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Brewery tours

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Rockies Games

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The views

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Everything about our trip was a blast and I am so glad we got to experience so many of the places/events Colorado has to offer.

Needless to say I wanted to cry when my alarm went off at 6:30 this morning. Usually vacation flies by but this vacation seemed to last a while. We kept so busy and I was really getting used to moving at whatever speed I felt like. Although I did do some food prep last night and had everything ready to go in the A.M , I just could not get out of bed and into school mode. On the plus side, 39 more days until summer vacation. :-)

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What a Difference a Week Makes…

Oh, the changes that have happened in the last week. It’s been a while since I posted and I promise there will be food pics and recipes in the future, but first, a few updates. Stress level- extreme.

Last Thursday we got a call from our landlord letting us know she would be selling our condo when our lease is up in July. ?!?!??!?!?! Um what?!?! Nolan and I just moved in last summer and to be honest we still haven’t unpacked all our shit. We were hoping to live here another year or two and we never would have moved in if we knew it would only be for a year.  I DESPISE MOVING. It’s the worst.

When I got off the phone I immediately burst into tears. I love the community we live in and I was so excited for a great summer by my pool.  So yes, I fell apart for a few days. Nolan however was proactive, and within 2 days we were meeting with realtors, had a mortgage company, and we are house hunting which is terrifying.

Our plan was to stay where we are for 1 more year and THEN start this process but with the price of 1 bedroom apartments in our area, it’s cheaper to buy something. We have gone to a few open houses, seen some good and some terrifying, and I am starting to think we may actually find something we love. If not we will rent somewhere for another year and try this again next year. (Damn you student loans!)

In other news, I am on April vacation!!!

As planned, we spent yesterday doing laundry, running last minute errands, and packing for our trip to Denver. At about 12:30 we got a call from JetBlue letting us know that our flight which was scheduled to leave in 5 hrs had been cancelled because apparently Denver is getting slammed with snow.  AHHHH.

I’m telling you, when I got that message I was like WTF!? Why do we keep getting screwed?! (still pretty mad at our landlord for making us move) After much deliberation and rearranging, we changed our plans and now we will be going Wednesday morning until Sunday. At first I was beyond pissed off but this new plan is going to be much better than our original plan-weather wise. It was supposed to be 30s and snowy for most of our trip and now it will be 75 and sunny!

Plus, I hadn’t really stopped and realized how exhausted I was from the last few weeks at work. (the kids are always crazy the week before vacation). After we found out we were not boarding a plane in 5 hrs, I sat down on the couch and ended up falling asleep for a while. A long while. My body is happy to have some relax time before our Colorado adventure. I have a feeling that if we had made the trip yesterday, I would have spent most of the vacation asleep.

So yea, in the past 2 weeks all of our plans have been changed and I am not handling it like a champ. I realize that both of these events are 10000% out of my control so I need to move on, but I am stubborn and I do NOT handle change well. But I know that everything will work out for the best and we will end up where we are supposed to end up. I just wish I had a time machine so I could fast forward through the stress of the next 3 months!

Ok, rant over. I’m going to go cook to de-stress and maybe have a cocktail. Hey, I’m on vacation! 😉

 

 

 

 

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