It’s been a while…

It’s been a while since I last wrote because I am actually on vacation in North Carolina without internet connection. Which means, all of my posts have to be done on my phone which can get a bit uncomfortable. On the upside, the cabin we are staying in is very rustic and comfortable. There are actual hole in my bedroom ceiling looking into the bathroom upstairs because the floors are made with very real, very imperfect wood. It started showing last night and today we went to try an ski but it turns out to be quite on the expensive side so we icksnayed that and went back to our cozy cabin. There’s a trail nearby that we will go on later but mostly everyone is just cooking or cleaning or eating and, in my case, blogging. Hope everyone’s weekend is turning out as great as mine.

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Recipe of the Week: Creamy Pesto Chicken on Pasta

One of the things I love to do when I am home is try out some new recipes.

I tried one from allrecipes.com today with a few minor adjustments. It’s called Creamy Chicken Pesto with Bow Tie Pasta (this can be replaced with any kind of pasta really).

Creamy Pesto Chicken and Bow Ties Recipe

Ingredients:

3 cups uncooked pasta

2 tablespoons butter/margarine

1 lb. skinless, boneless chicken breast cubed

1 (10.75 oz) can of condensed cream of chicken soup

1/2 cup pesto sauce

1/2 cup milk

My added ingredients:

1/4 cup ricotta cheese

1 package frozen spinach thawed

Directions:

Cook pasta according to directions on box. Drain.

In the meantime, brown the chicken in butter/margarine.

When chicken is almost browned, add spinach to cook for a little while.

Add soup, pesto, milk, and ricotta cheese. Bring to boil. Then bring it down to low heat and let it cook for about 5 minutes.

Stir in the pasta.

Voila! You have yourself a very versatile dish.

There are a lot of ways to experiment with this recipe. By adding or subtracting some ingredients. For example, I’m not a huge fan of chicken, I ended up leaving the pieces on the side. I could probably cook this without the chicken an it would probably be a lot faster, too. Also you could add mushrooms or try a different Cream of __ soup. Also, maybe how I added spinach you prefer broccoli. The point is it is a very good base recipe and quite delicious as well.

Bon apetite!

Weekend Review

This weekend I spent truly and completely at home when I was not working. I finally caught that flu that went around and was laughing at because I hadn’t caught it. That just shows you, you should not laugh at fate. However it did give me a chance to finish up on some reading and watch a couple  of movies and TV shows.

Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion

First off, Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion. The movie is out and my boyfriend had taken me to go see it and I fell in love with it. Like with everything I fall in love with, I became obsessive and promptly bought the ebook. Like most-books-turned-movie, the book is absolutely better than the movie, although some parts are almost word for word. What I like most about this book is that… well I like a lot of things about this book:

  1. It is written from the perspective of the zombie.
  2. It is very satirical at times and somewhat cynical,
  3. However, it has a sense of hope that humanity can be better.
  4. It had pictures! (I know that makes me like a little kid, but I absolutely love when a book has pictures. And these weren’t even like illustrations just kind of like anatomical drawings at the beginning of each chapter.)
  5. While the vocabulary and content were clearly adult level, the book was very easy to understand and read. I got through it in one week with a full schedule of work and school.

If you haven’t gone to go see the movie, go see it or at least read the book/ And if you’re not into zombie books like me, trust me, this is not your run-of-the mill zombie book.

Also this weekend, in my cocoon of sickness I made for myself in my bed, I watched Mirror, Mirror (currently on Netflix) with Julia Roberts. How could you expect anything Julia Roberts does to be less than perfect. I’ll admit, kinda cheesy, but it was different compared to every other Snow White story out there. I liked it.

Perks of Being a Wallflower
Written and Directed by Stephen Chobsky

And to top of my cherry of happiness, my boyfriend downloaded (I know, the horror! I’m a die hard buy the DVDs kind of gal but I was desperate to see this movie so I gave in. I have already pre-ordered it) The Perks of Being a Wallflower with Emma Watson (the girl I would go lesbian for). I read the book when I was in high school and fell in love with it. It covers every possible horror that could happen to a high schooler.

Slightly melodramatic? Yes, definitely. A tearjerker? Of course. All in all a good film? ABSOLUTELY! Stephen Chobsky wrote the book specifically with the intention of making it into a movie script so it went pretty much exactly as the book goes. The only thing they left out (and probably for the best because it gets pretty depressing at points) is a poem in the middle of the book. If you haven’t read it or heard of it, you should. It is very moving and pretty much a summary of the tone of the book.

It may seem like this is the most depressing book of the century, but it’s not. It’s more about how despite all the things we go through in life, everything will turn out all right in the end. Pretty hopeful I think. The movie really gets that hopeful feeling across. I really enjoyed it anyway, and it got my mind off the fact that I couldn’t breathe (until the crying parts) and was burning up with a fever.

All in all, a non productive weekend, just as weekends should be. Wouldn’t have minded being free of the massive sniffles, but you can’t have your cake and eat it too. Anyone see any movies or read any books that they absolutely fell in love with. Leave a comment and let me know. I need something new to read and watch.

Top 10 Books to Read in the Spirit of Valentine’s Day

Usually I prefer to spend Valentine’s Day at home with my boyfriend, candlelit dinner, and watch a movie cozy cuddled up on the couch under one of those microfiber extra fluffy blankets. This year however I will be packing for a trip to  the mountains in North Carolina, my first real, stress-free vacation in about 3 years.

I am beyond excited even though my plans to stay at home and not dress up were totally thwarted. Every once in while you do have to leave the house, however, seeing as how we are native South Floridians and my boyfriend has never seen snow, I have a feeling we will spend the majority of the time inside our cabin than gadding about the mountains.

Anyway, since I won’t be staying home and my boyfriend will be too freaked out about flying to entertain me on the plane, I have decided the best way to put in me in the spirit of Valentine’s Day is to read books that get ooey-gooey feeling going in my heart. Here’s my list of Valentine’s Day books to read:

  1. A Knight in Shining Armor
  2. Gone with the Wind

These books are new, old, classic, funny, for adults, for teens, for kids. The point is that love and romance do not have an age and do not go out of style. Happy reading and Happy Valentine’s Day!

 

Coffee, My New Best Friend!

E-how has this to say about coffee and how it affects focus

Currently, there is not enough research to suggest that coffee aids in concentration. Caffeine may certainly induce alertness in individuals, which may also increase responsiveness on tests, according to the Sleep and Disorders Research Center. Increasing concentration, however, does not seem to be correlated with coffee consumption.

I have a tendency to get lost in my house sometimes. I have so many things to do what with cleaning and school and blogging and TV shows to watch, but sometimes I sit or pace in my house and cannot focus on a single one.

Today I had several projects due and was very far behind because of this problem. I figured it was going to be a late night of pacing, sighing, and general procrastination like usual but I decided to grab a cup of coffee at Starbucks before starting on my lack of attention to the important things in life. After I drank that coffee, it’s like I hyper focused my life! I cleaned almost the whole house, finished all my projects, and planned the next couple of days so that I don’t fall behind as well. I even had time to eat a midnight snack and watch some TV. Of course, I had some trouble falling asleep, but even today I still feel pretty on the ball.

There may not be research to prove it, but I’m officially a convert and a coffee machine is going to be the newest addition to my wonderful home so won’t even gave to leave the confines of my house to get a cup!

Why be a homebody?

So many people get bored at home and I just can’t understand it. I mean I have my days where I pace from room to room seemingly without purpose but that never means I want to leave the confines of my house, usually I’m just in need of some company.

Some people have this misconception that if you are a homebody you can’t have friends or a social life. I beg to differ. I spend plenty of time with people. They just come over to my house. We watch movies, I host dinner parties, we go to the pool, we play Wii. There are so many activities that can be done in my tiny home. And I feel so much more comfortable there than I do at any club so, more than likely, I’m more sociable at home.

Maybe someone is a homebody because they like being home like I do, but most likely it’s because you are on a budget and can’t afford to spend $150 every weekend to go out and party it up. No reason why you can’t party it up at home without the cover charge.

The next time you are bummed because you have to stay home, think about some of the things you can do in your very own home:

  • host a game  night
  • host a movie night
  • host a dinner or takeout party
  • throw a small party (or large if you are willing to live with the mess)
  • have a girls night and open a bottle of wine to get the gossip going
  • have a boys night and break out the cards, cigars, and junk food
  • have a poker night (maybe then you can win some money to go out the next time!)
  • have a crafting night and spend all night in front of the TV with your scissors, paper and glue
  • have  TV marathon on Netflix or Hulu

There are so many possibilities to have fun inside your own home, there’s never a reason to really leave. You’ll come to find that the more memorable memories with your friends were either big road trips cruises/vacations you had with them and the nights you spent “staying in”.