Anyone that knows me personally knows I have been on a major baking kick.
I got a BEAUTIFUL Kitchenaid Standing Mixer on Black Friday this year and have been obsessed with baking. For Christmas I made over 10 dozen cookies, a cheesecake and doggie treats for all my doggie parent friends.
Today I made some bread. I did not make it from scratch but got a premix for pumpkin bread. I decided to batch it as muffins instead of bread so it is more easily shareable with friends.
So I’m headed out to work for the day. Ate some pumpkin bread for breakfast to check off my breakfast for the day, walked Bella (who is getting even better at sitting) and even took some time to clean up the yard a bit this morning which will soon be a big task on my list to check off.
This year is moving quickly, just trying to keep up with something everyday!
I know it is something most people do on a regular basis but being a bartender often tends to lead to late nights and late mornings.
The new pup in the house is changing up the daily routine. I am waking up earlier so we can go on walks. I thought this was a perfect time to check this one off the list and hopefully start a new trend to last the year.
I made an egg sandwich this morning.
Fast and delicious. I probably need to go out and buy some other breakfast foods though.
I think, however, this will lead to more afternoon naps. But I’m ok with that because Bella is ready for naps too.
Best of luck to all of you out there still working on resolutions.
I have gotten a little backed up on posting but it does not mean I have not been actively checking things off my list. I suppose one task I should add to the list is keep my blog up to date. So I suppose today I will aim to make that happen and back date my postings.
So Friday, January 11th seemed like the perfect day to make some homemade hot chocolate! We had six inches of snow in Denver! Although much of it did not stick because it was so warm out, it still felt like a great day for some cocoa!
I found this super simple recipe online: Best Hot Chocolate from Scratch and went for it!
Started by heating whole milk and sugar:
Melted down the chocolate in the microwave:
Mixed it in once the milk started to slightly simmer:
Added a touch of vanilla. And boom- Hot chocolate!
It was decadent. And so easy! Definitely a great thing to do on a cold, winter day!
This month I have really started to get into some more of the weekly/monthly tasks. Currently, I am working on spending only cash and not eating any pizza. Both are going well so far.
So today I am throwing in another one, and this one should help coincide with the other two. I plan to make dinner at home every night this week. Sometimes dinner will be from scratch but other times just making something at home, rather than eating out or eating from work (usually mostly pizza) will be beneficial.
My hardest nights will be the weekend because I work late but I just need to make sure I plan and make sure if I have to be at work at dinner time, I make dinner at home and bring it in for myself at work.
Tonight I just made some Mac & Cheese and chicken. Easy enough. Hoping to keep going all week!
What are you doing today? This week? This month?
This may not sound difficult to most people. Or maybe it sounds really hard. But making a plan and sticking to it can sometimes be had. I can attest to that with the failure of my 365 Things List in 2017. But let’s not talk about that right now, since today is day EIGHT and I am attempting to keep going strong!
So today, I researched some recipes I like, wrote down all the ingredients, thought about some other snacks I enjoy or typically eat, and made a grocery list! Then off to the store I went and wouldn’t you know… I just got what was on the list. Of course, I came across stuff every so often and thought, “well, I would like to have that”. But I stayed the course and made myself just get what was on the list.
Often with these tasks, I research the benefits and there are usually long lists or lengthy articles, like this one from the HuffPost: Grocery List, Supermarket discussing all aspects of the act. Pinterest even has a whole section of “Supermarket Lists” that you can download. So there are plenty of resources to help you long the way. All I have to say about this simple task is:
The benefits of making a grocery list and sticking to it:
Saves you time.
Saves you money.
Keeps you on track for dietary goals.
It is that simple. And simple it was. What an easy, but beneficial thing to do!
P.S. I found the featured image on Google and that was by far my favorite… all the essentials, FRUIT-BREAD-MILK-WINE-SUGAR-BUTTER!
It may seem simple but I’ve read a few things that say keeping a food log can help you keep a better diet. This is a great article from health.com.
Keeping a Food Log
I think this is a great thing to do at the beginning of the year because it might be something that I want to keep going throughout the year.
So here’s my log for the day… maybe a little more personally than I want to be… but if I’m ashamed or embarrassed by how much I eat, then I should probably be changing my habits anyway.
Morning: Banana/Strawberry Smoothie with MALK, vanilla yogurt and spinach.
Afternoon: Farmhouse Salad; spinach, arugula, iceberg lettuce, goat cheese, tomatoes, onions, chicken and walnuts with red wine vinaigrette.
Evening: Cheese bread and Tomato Bisque with Gouda.
I also drank two ciders.
I think I was more conservative today because I was going to be doing this log… but hopefully that will be the benefit!
What a fun thing to do! Hosting a BBQ is quite the endeavor but such a fun time.
Owning my own house has been such an adventure and has enabled me to do so many things.
I decided to have a house party this weekend. My friend, Jared, bought me a grill as a housewarming gift, so no better time than to host a BBQ.
So many great friends turned out and we had a fabulous time. I think there will be many more of these to come at this house.
We had cornhole, a keg, some tired pups and a great group of friends!
Next time I will step it up and make some great BBQ!
This really is not as hard as you may think, although quite time consuming. I had some grapes in my refrigerator for quite a while and just could not seem to get rid of them, so I figured no better time than now to make some jam.
Started with fresh grapes:
Put into a pot with a little water and boiled:
Covered and simmered for 7 minutes and then too the cover off and began to boil:
When boiling the water from the grapes really emerges, so you have to boil for quite a while before much of the water had evaporated.
Then I added sugar, 3/4 of a cup for every cup of grapes:
I read to do a taste for doneness you place a plate in the refrigerator. Take a spoon full of the jam and place it on the plate. Put it back to cool for a couple minutes. Push on the jam, if there are creases it is done
So then just take it off the stove and pour into mason jars. The recipe I found said to let cool for a couple of hours, then lid and place in refrigerator.
So now, I am just waiting for it to cool. I cannot wait to try it!
I found instructions at this site: Snap Guide.
Mmmmm. Pizza. Ok, ok… I work in a pizza place so it is not usually my first go to when making dinner. But I was at the grocery store and came across this dough:
And figured today was a good day to knock this thing off my list. I thought about what toppings I wanted but decided to start simple and just go with cheese:
So first I assembled the dough in a pan with a little thickness on the edges to get some crust:
Added some sauce:
Parmesan cheese and mozzarella:
And then bakes at 425* F for 20 minutes:
Quite a delicious dinner and it only cost me 6$!
I remember when I was little I used to make cookies from scratch all the time! I used to love it and often my moms friends would ask me to make them some too! I was the neighborhood baker.
It has been a while since I made cookies and I have to say it was quite reminiscful. Although I forgot that I used to make them in Florida and today (obviously) I made them in Denver… I forgot to change the recipe for altitude so they came out pretty flat, but they still taste delicious so that’s all that matters.
In the oven:
And out of the oven:
I ate one… so now I have lots to take to work with me!
So I searched Pinterest and it did not take very long to find a recipe that sounded intriguing.
Everyone should try this recipe for Brown Sugar Pineapple Chicken from Carlsbad Cravings website.
It was pretty sweet for me, so I added a good amount of extra sambal, Asian chili, and I absolutely loved it.
Here’s my photo steps but check out the recipe link above for the full ingredients, step by step instructions, and all the details. I’m no professional chef but I think mine turned out pretty well. Also, I bought Archer Farms Basmati Rice for the first time. It comes in a bag you can throw in the microwave for just two minutes and it was delicious!