Monday, July 26, 2010

I'm Back! Plus Mini Recap

Hey there! Sorry for my little hiatus. This weekend I had a little (ok, kinda huge) family reunion. Basically, one whole side of my family came to visit through the weekend, so we have been doing things together for the past few days. I'll at least cover saturday, and sort of cover sunday and monday as much as I can haha!

Saturday morning, Ralph and I went to the Amish Market near my sister's house for breakfast.
I guess I was hungry, because I already started eating before snapping a picture, whoops!

Ralph and I ran some errands before returning to my sister's house and before all the family arrived.

Mom, dad, my brother Adam and my grandma arrived first.
We started noshing on some pretzels and assorted vegetables as seen in the background.
The pretzel platter was a little more photogenic :)

My brother in law, Dave, was doing the grilling and made these delicious chicken wings, yum!

Later on, I had some sausage with peppers

Chocolate crumb cake, and aside from nibbles at bits of frosting from Ralph's plate, I more or less ignored the cookie cake.

The afternoon was filled with catching up with family I haven't seen in a very long time. Sadly, many of my family members live across the country or even across the pond in the U.K., but even though we're far away, it's always nice to see everyone again!

Salad plus Dave's mom's basmati rice and biryani? I will have to find out. Now that I'm moving in with my sister, I'm hoping to learn how to cook like Dave's mom!

Went to my mom's cousin's house and to a nearby lake. My cousin (Amelia), Ralph and I spent a lot of time swimming in the lake. It was a lot of fun! The air temp was in the 90's, but the water was just as hot. We spent the whole time looking for cold spots. We had subs for lunch and just as we were looking to go swimming again, we heard thunder, so that was it for our day by the lake. We went back to our cousin's house, and got back just in time to beat out the rain! We spent some time chatting and relaxing and before we knew it the power went out. Luckily, the rain cooled the air considerably and we didn't worry about the power because the evening plans included a trip to Atlantic city- we were adventurous yesterday, no? Anywho, we cleaned ourselves up and headed out to Atlantic city for dinner and a nice walk on the boardwalk. I'd never been to Atlantic city before, but it was pretty cool. Sadly, even though I'm 21, I didn't play any of the games. Maybe next time? All I know is that I was looking to go for a walk along the boardwalk and it was everything I wanted and more!

Spent a lot of time in the car driving up north to the beach. Sorry, no pics, although I'm kicking myself because I really should have. However, I DID participate in numerous family group pictures during the reunion plus uncle Mike's candid shots. Does that count? Yes? Ok, until tomorrow, when I'll be in full swing again (and I may even jump start it with a run, but we'll see!)


Sunday, July 25, 2010

Lightning Fast Friday

Good morning! Happy Sunday!

Friday marked a crazy start to a busy, family filled weekend.

Started with a blueberry muffin and blueberries

A little while later I drove my brother in law to Loews and we picked up materials to redo the floor in their dining room.

Around lunchtime:
Half the leftovers from dinner the previous night- still tasty!

After I ate lunch, my sister got home and we took her dog, Rudy, to the vet for a short check up. They said he was doing good.

My sister and I came back home and got ready to work. Around 4:30 we started pulling up the carpet and padding. I guess now I should mention that the reason we had to pull it up is because Rudy, though he's a sweet little dog, has been marking all over the living room/dining room carpet, and the carpet just absorbed everything. Were hoping that he'll stop doing that in this room once we put in a new floor (or at least it'll be a lot easier to clean up if he does do it). After pulling the carpet, we had to pull out the staples for the padding. We finished doing that around 6/6:30.

When we took a little break, I went out in search for a farm stand to get fruit. I did find a farm stand, but I wasn't sure if they were open, so I was unadventurous and just headed to the store. When I got back I was really hungry and snacked on a banana and then finished up my linguine with clam leftovers.

Then we got back to work and started putting the laminate tile on the floor. We soon realized that, of course, the walls weren't quite even, so we'd have some gaps, and we tried to figure out what to do. By 9, my brother in law remembered what he did when he previously tiled, and he and my sister started tiling the floor hardcore. Meanwhile, the boyfriend, Ralph, arrived at my sister's house and I sat with him while he had something to eat. Afterwords, we went out for ice cream, but I guess I was in vacuum mode and inhaled my little cup before I remembered to take a picture, haha!

Ralph and I came back and we helped place the tiles. I think we were able to finish up the whole tiles by around 10:15, leaving the oddly shaped crevices for Saturday morning and a fresh night of sleep.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Hittin' the Road

Good evening!

Today started out so weird. I was a little bum this morning... I set my alarm for 7 and instead of getting up at 7 I hit snooze for about an hour.... oops! Granted, I couldn't fall asleep until about 2 am, so I guess my body was retaliating a bit.

When I finally mosied out of bed, I picked up my last peach (*tear*) and ate it happily.

Then rounded out breakfast with some toast and 1/2 my cream topped yogurt!

I got dressed and continued to pack my car. My internet was down, so I went to the University to get connected (blogging, looking for FM transmitters for my Zune, get directions for the trip). Once I got the necessary info, I ran out to Best Buy to purchase the FM transmitter. They only had iPod ones, and one for all MP3 players- for 50 bucks! Um... pass. I ran to Target to see if they had any options and I was able to pick up a different one for 30- still expensive but at least a little bit better. I know the transmitter is not absolutely necessary, but since I have no other way to play my device in the car (and I often travel through zones with little musical variety to visit Ralph and such) I thought it would be a good investment. I made one last trip back to my apartment to pick up some last minute items and eat lunch.

Ah, lunch. I was ravenous once lunch time rolled around:
Pasta plus creamy tomato sauce

And CCV's Hot fudge baby!

Before I left the area, I met a friend at Starbucks to say goodbye. He treated me to a small skim strawberries n' cream frappucino. He noted how the strawberries 'n cream was not pink or consistent in color. I'm not sure whether to be happy ( real strawberries perhaps) or concerned (if it wasn't real strawberries.... then what was it?). Oh well, maybe we'll research further next time... if we're feeling brave, haha!

I then began my 3 1/2 drive south. The weather was perfect for a long drive. Sure, it was a little hot, but at least it was nice and sunny!

I arrived at my sister's house around 6. We went out for dinner at a new Italian restaurant in their town (They didn't yet have a liquor license, so my brother-in-law picked up a bottle of Chianti for us to enjoy, yay!) To sum it up, we enjoyed some bread w/ seasoned olive oil, calamari, and salad. I ordered Littleneck clams with marinara sauce over linguine. However, we were all so stuffed from appetizers and such that we took most of our entrees home.

All in all- very delicious dinner, but I'm stuffed! Goodnight!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A Smooth Start

Good afternoon! I'm getting ready to begin moving my things to my sister's house today, but I'll quickly recap yesterday's happenings.

Blueberry-banana smoothie to start
I swear, the fresh blueberries made all the difference with this smoothie (and/or that they were room temperature, but I'm sure the freshness helped too!)

Buttered toast. 'Twas okay.

After breakfast I kinda dilly-dallied, trying to decide whether or not to exercise, read/post for the blog, clean or pack. Exercising outside was out of the question since it started pouring again. Somewhere along the way I was trying to kill a fly in my apartment. As I was trying to pull open the blinds in my kitchen, I ended up breaking the plastic part on top in half. Granted, I was probably pulling with a little more force than necessary, but I still think they were flimsy and shouldn't have broken so easily. I was annoyed about breaking the blinds, but I was more annoyed with the fact that people could now see my every mood in the kitchen, so I decided to cover the window with an extra sheet I had.

And then I made burrito for lunch
Stuffed to the brim

I started packing more efficiently after breaking the blinds. How's that for motivation? I guess I figured I wanted to get out asap before I break anything else in the apartment.

Later on, I attempted to go for a bike ride, but a few minutes in it started raining. I tried to wait it out at a nearby school, and it did slow down, but it started raining harder again and I hightailed it home. Sorry to talk about the weather so much, but sometimes the weather here is more unpredictable than a teenagers' mood swings.

After the rain slowed and the sun came out again, I decided to start packing my car a bit. I'd been checking the radar all day (plus the thunderstorm warnings) and I knew another patch of rain was coming, so I thought I'd at least be able to get something done. I packed half my trunk, whoot!

And then the thunder came. And the hail. So I chilled out and made some popcorn!
Covered in chili powder and buttah.

Mulled around a bit, talked to Ralph, went to the gym and ran 4 miles, and then came back for dinner. I quickly boiled some whole wheat pasta.
Covered it with the Creamy tomato sauce.

And and orange juice ice pop, yum!
Then talked to my sister for a little bit!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

What Time Is It? Burrito Time!

Good evening!

Tuesday began with a peach
Although there are so many delicious fruits available in the summertime, I think the fruit I'd hug this month has to be a peach!

Blurry blueberry muffin for breakfast
And then I did much of the same things as yesterday- a little bit of cleaning, a little bit of packing, a little bit of blog reading and writing, and worked on my online course.

Took a burrito break:
I kinda overcooked the tortilla so it didn't fold well, but it was nice and crunchy!

Blurry inside peek:
My burrito featured homemade refried beans, barely cooked zucchini and corn, salsa, sour cream over a wheat tortilla. Seriously, the salsa and sour cream make the burrito! Guacamole's awesome too, but salsa and sour cream are bare minimum ingredients in my book!

Afterwards, I took a bike ride to campus and back, then hung out with a friend for a little while. We ended up going for bubble tea. I ordered a HUGE cup of coconut bubble tea with tapioca pearls. Sadly no pics, but I assure you it was at least a 16 oz cup of deliciousness.

The tapioca pearls left me full for a while, so I had a later dinner:
Creamy tomato sauce over wheaty bread/toast.

Can you tell where the bread is?
It's in there somewhere I promise. I also promise to make more pasta soon so I don't look like a weird tomato-sauce-topped-bread eating girl, ha! Ah well, it worked.

On another note: What's inside your favorite burrito? Just curious...

Slow Going Monday

Good morning!

Monday I had a repeat breakfast:
I'm loving Stonyfield's Cream on Top French Vanilla with fresh blueberries.

Plus a peach: 
And then got to work looking for a new job, cleaning and packing. I'm so excited to be moving soon!

Ralph left the last cinnamon-sugar doughnut for me. What a guy!
Perfect for a mid morning snack

The rest of my Five Guys burger, plus pineapple. Yum!

Later on in the afternoon, I had a muffin for a snack.

For dinner I finished up the pasta
The weather had been pretty weird all day. It rained early in the morning, got sunny most of the afternoon, and then rained again and once again the sun popped out. It was about this time when I decided to go for a 2 mile walk. It was so nice out that I went out again for a run a little bit later- about 3 miles.

Post workout snack
My last pineapple cinnamon ice pop, boo!

All in all, I feel like I didn't get much done on Monday :(. I did however do a decent job cleaning, packed some more things in preparation for my move, and most importantly I think, I didn't get overwhelmed about it all. Last week, even though not much was going on, I was feeling very overwhelmed/stressed because there were so many things I had to/wanted to do, and when I get to that point I start to feel like I can't get anything done. I'm just glad I haven't gotten to that point this week, yay!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

How to Indulge

Good evening!

I now present sunday morning's breakfast.
Split the peach with Ralph. See, I'm a good sharer, right? Ralph?

I think after this we went for a bike ride. I was such a downer about it though. I think I complained the whole time because we left around 12:30 and it was the hottest, sunniest part of the day. It turned out to be okay, and we covered maybe 8 miles? However, I was so mean about it.

We stopped at Lone Maple Farm so Ralph could get honey. We also picked up some cinnamon sugar doughnuts. We each had one and then split a third. They were so yummy, how could we not?

Then we got back to my apartment ready (and not too hungry) to cook.

Made a HUGE batch of Creamy tomato sauce:

And some pasta to enjoy it with.


As you can see, I will do whatever it takes to avoid wasting sauce!

Now onto the baking portion of our segment. Remember those blueberries we picked? About half of them went into this blueberry crisp:

Of course we had to taste test it!
The recipe kept it simple and the crisp ended up tasting great. The topping could have been mositer, but hey, it is a crisp so some part of it had to be a little crispy.

Another portion of berries went into these blueberry muffins
We halved the recipe and made a dozen.

After baking and eating our baked goods, we went to Barnes and Noble so Ralph could pick up a book. We came back to my apartment building and read for a little while right outside my building. While we were outside, we ran into a couple of friends who were leaving Five Guys, with their burgers in hand. On top of that, I'm moving very soon, and I won't be living this close to this awesome burger joint, so Ralph and I decided to go for it:

My burger covered in fries:

My burger- I ended up eating half and then having some fries.


And just something to leave you with. As Ralph and I were finishing up our burger/fries meal, we saw a family who, after finishing their Coldstone ice creams, went into Five Guys and got fries. And normally, I might comment on that, but after reviewing what I ate on sunday (lots of yummy, indulgent stuff), I think I'll pass, haha! 

Monday, July 19, 2010

Blueberry Heaven

Good Morning again!

The weekend recap continues...

Toast and scrambled eggs with hot sauce

During Breakfast, I mentioned that everything on the table gravitated toward him during meals (like when he acquired both his and my butter knife) and this is what I got: 

Exhibit A

Exhibit B

After breakfast we went to a farmers market:

I just picked up peaches. There's nothing better than fresh peaches in summer!

And then we went on the search for the blueberry farm. It was a little bit of a hunt since I forgot to print out directions (or bring a map). We figured we couldn't get too lost. Turns out I remembered more than I thought and we got to Apple Hill farm in record time. We actually found their stand and restaurant first, looked around, and then drove over to the Blueberry U-Pick.

It was so nice outside! It was sunny out and there was a cool breeze to combat the heat.

After 30-45 mins here's what we got:
I practically had to drag Ralph out of the fields, and even then, as we were leaving, he was picking more berries as we passed the bushes. Silly!

Then we went to Chenango State Park and visited the lake. We tanned and went swimming and just hung out at the park for about 2 hours. At this point we hadn't eaten a meal (besides blueberries and peaches) for hours.

We got back to my apt and then went to Wegmans. I got a soup and salad, both which were unappetizing since I was just really thirsty. We then picked up some groceries.

And finished the day with pineapple cinnamon ice pop and summer beer:

Perfect way to end a perfect day!