I am not a huge fan of twitter. I am a little embarrassed to say, I don’t really get it.
That being said, whenever my co-worker let’s me take over our twitter account for an event (and sadly, this has only happened twice) I start to appreciate it a little more. But how knows if that is twitter, or the sense that I am wearing a super hero’s uniform (yes, for this blog’s purposes, Robin Hood is a super hero).
But I did have a success lately with twitter. And I must give my sister Abby credit for encouraging me to go to the twitter-verse for help in the first place.
Can we all take a minute and share a moment of silence for Sherwood.
Yes, that’s right, my betta fish has died.
While some may blame me (and my lack of tank cleaning) I blame Robin Hood’s poor heating. I am 99% sure he froze to death. Thankfully, with my new 12.12.12 concert sweatshirt, I am safe from the same fate.
We will always remember Sherwood for the joy and happiness he brought to our office and he will be missed. Thankfully, he will be reunited with his friends Tex and Rob Lowe.
However, since graduating and retiring from the sport of swimming, I had to hang up the parka. Let’s be serious, it just isn’t appropriate to wear around town. Well, unless you are my mom who continues to wear it to get the paper in the morning or while she is snow blowing the driveway.
So, as a result, for the past 7 years, I’ve been freezing. No coat could ever replace the parka – so why would I even bother. That is, until now. With well below freezing temperatures, a 10-15 minute walk to the subway, and a new found shopping addiction, it seemed like the perfect time to get a new coat.
Which brings me back to online shopping. I found one I liked (and on sale!) and sent the link to Abby to get her opinion.
FAST FORWARD TO NOW
As I sat down to blog this evening, I realized that I had nothing good to write about . So I wrote to Abby asking for ideas…
So, here I am. No coat. Nothing to blog about. And cold.
Heat oil in a medium pot over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, and pepper flakes and cook, stirring, until tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Add broth and bring to a boil. Add broccoli and cook, covered, until bright green and tender, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat, stir in spinach, and let cool slightly.
Transfer soup to blend and puree with avocado. Adjust seasoning. Garnish with avocado and a drizzle of olive oil.
Refrigerate soup in an airtight container up to 3 days.
My favorite kitchen appliance is my KitchenAid mixer. I coveted one for years. And then, after Matt and I moved in together and after I secured a new (and desperately needed) job, a KitchenAid mixer appeared in the mail. My mother, who never owned a one herself, bought me the cobalt blue mixer.
From the minute I turned it on, I was in love. Making cookies became easier, beating frosting didn’t require holding a mixer for 15 minutes and after my mother-in-law bought me the ice cream attachment, the love affair escalated. I’ve purchased many off friends’ wedding registries and got one for my mom last Christmas. Honestly, I don’t know how she lived without for 60(ish) years. Nothing could tear me away from my KitchenAid.
That is… until my Crock-Pot came along.
When Matt and I got engaged, registering fro Kitchen appliances, gadgets, pots, pans and dishes was a highlight. With my limited kitchen space in NYC, I hesitated to put a crock pot on the list. Thankfully my mom convinced me, saying even if I could use it now, I would want it in the future. So I registered for one.
My soon-to-be sister-in-law bought Matt and I our crock pot for our shower. I was super excited to receive this gift, but I knew there was no way I could store it at our apartment. So, sadly, like many of our other shower and wedding gifts, I packed it into my bedroom closet at my parents house. And then, I forgot about it.
Not because I didn’t appreciate the gift, but because I didn’t have room for it. However, every time I return to NH, I open that closet and feel an incredible sense of frustration that I have these wonderful, nice things that I simply don’t have room for. And pinterest made it worse.
When I joined pinterest, I immediately started using the site for recipes. And much to my chagrin, a huge number of the recipes I would come across were for crock pots and slow cookers. And I didn’t have one (in my possession). Eventually, it was just too much. After Thanksgiving, I hauled the large box back to NYC and spent a few hours strategically moving things around. Finally I found a spot for the crock pot!
A few days later, I pulled it out and fired it up. The first recipe I made was one recommend by Matt’s mom: white chicken chili (recipe below). I put the ingredients in before work and by the time I came home, our apartment was filled was delicious aromas and the cooking was done! It was amazing, delicious and the clean up was just one pot. After dinner, I hopped on my computer and started looking up more crock pot recipes. I was hooked.
It wasn’t long before the crock pot took the place of my KitchenAid. Baking cookies and making ice cream was replaced with chilis, pulled pork and soup. Matt didn’t complain by my co-workers started to question what was going on.
While I can’t say with conviction which is my favorite – I can definitely say that in our 800 sq. ft. apartment, I’m happy to designate at least 10 sq feet to my ever-growing collection of kitchen appliances!
Crock Pot Cream Cheese Chicken Chili
2-3 boneless chicken breast halves (can be still frozen)
2 cans Rotel tomatoes
2 cans corn kernels, do not drain
2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
1 pkg. Ranch dressing mix(dry)
1 ½ T cumin
1 ½ t chili powder
1 8-oz pkg. cream cheese
Put the chicken in the crock pot.
Top with the tomatoes, corn, drained and rinsed beans,ranch dressing, cumin, and chili powder; stir to combine.
Cook on low for 6-8 hours, stir and add cream cheese. Cook on high 1 more hour.
Shred the chicken into large pieces, stir to combine all.
After cleaning up my actual desk at work, I decided I should clean up my desktop as well. And while sorting electronic files doesn’t quite have the same rewarding feeling as physical files – I still get enjoyment out of it (yup, I realize that is weird).
One thing that I decided to clean up/clean out are the blogs that I read on a somewhat daily basis. Over the past year, I’ve accumulated quite a list of sites that I’ve bookmarked and try to visit a few times a week.
Most of these blogs are incredible and inspirational; however, I’ve decided to fine tune my list.
After my wedding I decided to stop reading wedding blogs. It was a hard adjustment but I think I can say I successfully cut that chapter out of my life.
[That sounds harsh – I didn’t cut out the chapter of my life where I got married… just my strange obsession with things like place cards, first dance choices and flower arrangements. It had to happen – I was becoming ridiculous]
So with the exception of occasionally peaking at Snippet & Ink or seeing some ideas that my engaged coworkers send over, I don’t follow any wedding blogs.
Up next: home improvement blogs. I’ve decided to limit the number of blogs that I read that focus on home improvement. I don’t need a daily reminder that Matt and I live in a one bedroom apartment – which we rent. Between the home improvement blogs and HGTV, I’m about ready to rip up the floor boards and start gutting my bathroom. Somehow I don’t think my landlord would approve. Thankfully I’ve decided that I can keep a few of these blogs on my list because one day, I hope to own a house and this is research for the future. Plus the family from Young House Love is just too cute to quite.
I’ve also decided to stop following blogs written by folks who are vegan, addicted to yoga or are master chefs. Let’s face it – that’s never going to be me.
So let’s just ignore the fact that I haven’t been blogging lately. I know, I promised to do a better job leading up to the holidays. Clearly I lied. But don’t worry, I’m just as disappointed as you are. Let’s agree to move on and never talk about it again – even if it happens again.
While I would love to update you on my holiday travels, I don’t want to make my sister jealous of the incredible time that I had on our sailing trip around the British Virgin Islands.
Plus if I mention anything about Miami and the National Championship Football Game, I think my husband and all of his Notre Dame loving friends might have to go back on suicide watch.
(Yes, there was a giraffe at our tailgate. Yes, I did freak out.)
So let’s skip all of that.
Tonight, I’ve spent the last two hours watching a documentary about Australia’s Great Barrier Reef on Animal Planet (now you understand why I haven’t been able to blog as regularly as possible. Very important shows like this…) The whole show is pretty incredible and definitely making me want to plan a vacation there. However, one particular segment stood out.
Raine Island s a vegetated sandy island that is located on the outer edges of the Great Barrier Reef, approximately 390 miles north Queensland, Australia. Raine Island is the site of the world’s largest remaining population of Green Turtles. On any given day more than 5,000 turtles visit the sandy oasis; however, at the height of their breeding, more than 26,000 turtles arrive on the island at the same time to laid 100 eggs each.