Tuesday, January 25, 2011

My Love

Today is my five year anniversary with my darling, Jeff. I just wanted to share a few pictures of the flowers he sent me this morning. He did well. He did really, really well.

Stopping to smell the roses...

Thank you so much, Jeff. I love you will all my heart.

Here's to 100 more,

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Merry Belated Christmas!

As I sit here, recovering from my holiday weekend.  I have sweet thoughts of the people in my life that made my Christmas and my 2010 so memorable.  It all started on Friday night (Christmas Eve). Plans to travel south were derailed, so my boyfriend and I decided we'd take in a nice dinner in Los Feliz.  Wine was sipped, seafood devoured, and yes the best part - dessert savored.

Then it was Christmas Day -  Being away from family around the holidays has never been easy for me but this year was a little easier.  I was feeling very blessed for the friends in my life that I "spearheaded" (as Bryan calls it) the Christmas committee.  The most exciting part for me was setting the table.  Again, gotta give a shout out to my 99 cent store where I purchased majority of the items for $30!!  

Each plate had a charger, cracker, and name tag.
I got the idea while in the store to use ornaments as name tags.  Blue was chosen for Mark and JD (Bryan's roommates) who are Jewish!

The center piece was a left over charger, red and silver ornaments and a white candle.

The Food - Oh my goodness did we have a vegetarian feast.  The wonderful part was that each of us brought something to the table that represented our families and/or our culture.
mmm...Mac&Cheese w/ WI sharp Cheddar!

The feast

A great time was had by all! I hope your holidays were as lovely and memorable as mine were.

With Love,
Carli Jo


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Pizza Night!

In keeping with my resolution to develop a relationship with my kitchen, I busted out my baking skills and made a homemade pizza. I've made a few before, so this wasn't something altogether new for me. I use Fleischmann's Pizza Yeast for the crust, a can of Hunt's tomato sauce and a can of Ralph's brand tomato paste along with basil, parsley, garlic powder and sugar for the sauce, a blend of cheeses, and whatever toppings I have on hand. In this case I used a fresh tomato and Trader Joe's frozen bell pepper blend.

I...am...not the most tidy person. Any cooking project involving flour, cheese, any loose ingredient really will end up on my clothes, on the floor and in my hair. The above picture was taken midway through the pizza making process.

Here's my pizza pie ready to hit the oven. Please note my untidiness reflected in the mangled, uneven, not-quite-a-shape form my pizza has taken on. I can assure you, this pizza tastes better than it looks.

A Pizza Haiku:

Fresh from the oven,
Bubbly cheese perfection.
Golden and crispy.

Ok, so it only works if you pronounce Bubbly, "bubble-y."

Confession time. So for this picture I only have two slices on the plate. I may or may not have added a few more after the fact. I made the salad with Trader Joe's Spring Mix and the leftover tomato, then doused it with Olive Garden Italian dressing...of course. Any dinner ideas you'd like to pass along? Suggestions are MUCH appreciated!


Wednesday, January 5, 2011

It's That Time of Year Again...

...resolution time. I haven't been one to make many resolutions in the past, but this year I have two. Two. Whole. Resolutions. The first, which I'm sure I share with many, is to choose a more positive outlook daily. I'm trying to reset my mind to think happy thoughts instead of "oh-my-gah-the-world-could-end-any-second" thoughts. Five days in and I've met with some success. Only some because we had a premiere party for work Monday night and this is the first of last three parties that hosted an open bar. Well, I had to catch up! I woke up Tuesday petrified that something stupid came out of my mouth and that would be the day I got fired for the first time. It's Wednesday, I'm still here, and I had rockin' water pressure in the shower this morning so I'm chalking today up as a win.

My second resolution is all about food. Go figure. It's my hope and want (and therefore my resolution) to spend more time in the kitchen. I've done fairly well over the last year with making dinner once maybe twice a week and baking cookies or whipping up a batch of rice crispie treats whenever the mood strikes. This year I will make MEALS. Multiple meals per week. Including sides. I've done a fantastic job of this one so far. Not only did I bake my butt off at Christmas time,  but also made multiple step appetizers for a friend's New Year's Eve party. I've made biscuits, cheese biscuits, cream of tomato soup with croutons and last night was the topper. I made BBQ pulled pork, BBQ vegetables, and a mixed greens salad with Olive Garden dressing (the only edible salad dressing, IMO) (Thanks, Lee.) Check it out!

I made this all by my very self.

I hope after five days in, you're all keeping up with your resolutions of the year. I'd love to hear what you've pledged for yourself and how things are going. What do you know, it's lunchtime. I'm headed to the kitchen to heat up leftovers!

Happy New Year and Bon Appetit!