fresh & delicious {salad recipes}

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

I'm a salad girl, I got it honest.  My grandpa makes the best salads ever, a fact every person in my family can agree with.  I had a good teacher; and I throughly enjoy creating new & delicious salads for my husband and friends which everyone seems to enjoy.

And while I love a big green lettuce salad [with as many toppings as possible] lately I have been making salads without all the leafy greens.  Here are few of my favorites:

Black Bean Avocado -- 1 can black beans rinsed and drained, handful of diced red onion, halved cherry tomatoes, and one avocado diced.  Sprinkle with salt, the juice of a lemon and lots of fresh cilantro, and enjoy.

Mango Cilantro Slaw -- 1 container green & purple cabbage chopped, 1 mango* diced, sprinkle with a teaspoon of sugar and the juice of 2 limes.  Let marinate in fridge for at least 30 minutes, top with lots of fresh cilantro and enjoy.

Greek Salad -- chop 1 green pepper, yellow pepper, and cucumber in to chunks,  add half thinly slice red onion, handful of kalamata olives, and halved cherry tomatoes.  Load the top with crumbled feta, a sprinkle of salt & pepper, and a drizzle of red wine vinegar & extra virgin olive oil.  Mix together and add pepperonici if desired.  Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and enjoy.

Like all recipes I believe you can adapt them to your liking, adding something subtracting another-- make it your own! I always do.  I like to use as fresh, good quality ingredients whenever I can-- but you better believe I buy pre chopped mango*, prepackaged cabbage mix, and canned beans.    I usually prefer these as side dishes and big lettuce loaded salads for meals, but anything can be a meal if you eat enough of it, amiright?!  Enjoy!!

So what are some of your favorites? I would love to hear what kind of creations you make!


march miscellany

Monday, March 30, 2015

the best blueberry muffins || signs of spring || "i'm so fancy" || cilantro on everything || poem reading and espresso drinking, so hipster || first day of Spring || Friday treats || I can't cut a mango || he only wanted Chris to read his bedtime story, precious || one of the best times of the year || Spring is here! || how we watch marathons || crockpots are magical || before the rain || this guy is pretty fun to run races with-- & beat || date night || 


taking stock {march}

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Making: Easter baskets and spring break plans 
Cooking: dinner at least five nights a week-- a huge success in my book.
Drinking: Starbucks sugar free vanilla Americano's- can't stop-won't stop.
Reading: food/baking blogs, lots as of late--- a budding passion I suppose?
Knowing: God's timing is perfect
Wanting: colorful patio decor and a big charcoal grill
Looking: for a spring dress, strappy sandals, and a summer tote bag-- and a great bikini, always.
Playing: with Playdoh. the other night with our godson, it occupied all three of us for hours; so relieved it still smells the same
Wasting: time looking at my phone
Wishing: my baby brother the Happiest of Birthday's! 20 years of being a big sister and him still having the best hair in our family.
Enjoying: March Madness!! Go DUKE!!
Waiting: for Chris to get home
Liking: Bud-light. I know I know, I surprised/ashamed too.
Wondering: when the warm temperatures will be here to stay?
Loving: 27, its a good age
Hoping: for fruitful gardens this year.  Seen also as, hoping to remember to water them
Marveling: at my love for this beach city.  Celebrating four years this March, and I cannot see myself living anywhere else.
Needing: more grace and faith
Smelling: dinner.  Chicken enchilada soup magically coming together in the crockpot. This wondrous invention, simultaneously making me feel efficient, domestic, and hungry all at the same time.
Wearing: neon! flipflops! and sunglasses! any chance I get
Following: the highway down to 70 degrees and family
Noticing: more blooms, more green, more smiles
Knowing: when you try to control everything, you enjoy nothing.  my mantra/reminder as of late, and for life
Thinking: about my grocery list and making lemon poppyseed bread
Feeling: tired
Bookmarking: Carrot cake recipes -- Attempting this one for Easter
Opening: the sliding back door to let the Corgi out-- still such a novelty to have a fenced in backyard for my dog to play in.
Giggling: most days 
Feeling: peaceful


on my table.

Friday, March 20, 2015

simple, sweet, and colorful

with cheers and a big hooray! because today it is Spring.

we made it!



a Spring list

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Spring is here! ---or almost, and as usual I have lots of fun ideas/plans/projects that I am eager to dive into this season. But rather than list a bunch of "to-do's" I think Spring deserves a bit more love and magic than that and lists sometimes take that away....
So, how about an enjoy list, with a few to-do's thrown in for good measure-- the perfect balance for my list making and fun having heart!

a Spring enjoy list:

run the Shamrock 8k & dance in the sand at the St. Patty's party afterwards-- make & enjoy corned beef+cabbage+guinness

bake the best carrot cake ever for Easter -- spend time with family and go to Easter Sunrise service

go through our garage & have a yard sale! -- toss junk, donate what's left...

start refinishing/painting/updating furniture for the guest room

get a new charcoal grill --christen her & host a cookout with friends!

watch tons of basketball-- fill out brackets -- dominate, per usual.

capture the beauty of the season with my camera

go on a weekend getaway to Charleston!! -- eat all the southern comfort-food.

work in our yard -- Herb and Vegetable garden planting, grass mowing, weed pulling, flower potting, mulching, power-washing....

update patio furniture! new cushions, umbrella, decor, ....*to my husband-- this is happening, deal with it. {xo}

more runs outside! & more walks for the corgi!

a trip to the zoo or aquarium with our godson and friends

get boat ready for another fun season on the water! -- early May, preferably...

pick Strawberries!!!!

run a half-marathon.

Just by the length of this list I guess you can tell I ready and excited for this beautiful season.
What are you looking forward to this Spring?

grateful this morning.

Friday, March 13, 2015

for this sweet friday morning-- before the day starts, before the sun is up.  coffee, candle, and a snoozing corgi-- now while the sun is rising, so is my spirit.  my devotion this morning(Romans 8) struck me hard, I love when that happens...

for basketball.  the excitement and fun it brings to March is so welcomed. Go Duke!

for small joys this week: homemade dinners and table sitting, a clean car, hot coffee, leave your jacket at home days, fresh cilantro on everything, this book, an unexpected note from a friend, and new running socks.

for upcoming plans! trips! and fun!

for my growing ability to see through darkness and find the light...

for running legs and this hobby that has changed my life and brought so much joy.  also for our shamrock in' weekend coming up, always, always a good time.

for little moments with her this week: after-school Panera date, UP-TOWN funkin' it with the windows down, sidewalk chalk and chatting about somethings and nothings and the like...

for Spring Forward, lone daffodils, pink buds, the sun on my face, greening grass, warm afternoons, flip flop weather!

for his kiss on my cheek, his hand in my hand-- my love for him is irrevocable, even after all this time, and that I think, he feels the same, indescribable.

for the white wine chilling, frozen fish thawing, and that today is friday and fish tacos are for dinner!

happy Friday - happy weekend


homemade muffins

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

It started as a snowy day project a few weeks ago, to make homemade muffins.   Baking something from scratch is always fun for me and having the time to do so is even nicer. The warmth of the oven, the floury sweet smell wafting through the house, all lovely things -- also helping to pass the time because single degree weather and many inches of snow foresees I won't be leaving my cozy house at all that day.

I used this master muffin mix recipe from Sally's Baking Addiction -- following closely: room temperature ingredients, not over measuring-mixing, using full fat ingredients! buttermilk/canola oil/white+brown sugar!  Not super healthy, but a treat to be enjoyed, especially on cold winter days. Or chilly Spring mornings, or crisp Fall evenings or....well you get it.

The first two batches were chocolate chip & banana nut muffins -- I sent most of them away, I feared if they stayed in my house I would have eaten them all, truly.   And then the other day I made a batch of blueberry muffins to take with me out of town, because sharing baked goods = also my love language.

The recipe is easy and makes delicious bakery-style muffins-- I enjoyed baking them almost as much as tasting them! almost.  You can adapt the recipe to make mini muffins or Large ones too!

What is your favorite kind of muffin? & Do you enjoy them with tea or coffee?  I'm a coffee girl. duh.



Tuesday, March 10, 2015

a weekend away to Raleigh -- late night chatting and laughing, hair do's with mimosas, sweet potato biscuits at brunch, outlet shopping with dressing room parties, pizza+pajamas+basketball cheering, sunday strollin' with lunch and a coffee date and a little boutique shopping as well.  the sun came out and jackets were left at the house, glorious indeed. the weather as well as the company was exactly what I have been desperately yearning for; a healthy dose of love, friendship, and spring.

filling our time with the best girly things or sitting and chatting, sipping cocktails or coffee-- either way its always wonderful.  comfortable, easy, and loved so deeply-- our friendship spans over almost 30 years, which is wondrous and truly one of the greatest blessings I have ever received.

so thankful for these women and our weekend together.


on my mind

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

on a Monday- fresh start, a new week
sun peeking through gray clouds
snow melting{finally} rain drops fading
early march- still winter, closer though
spinning in circles, the monotony, day in day out
spiraling down, picking things back up
arranging, only to be broken down again
forward, the only place to look
behind will get you nowhere
living in the hazy fog of past and "how things used to be"
debilitating, depressing, detrimental
change is hard, but staying in one place is even harder
passions waning, feeling like a broken record
a revolving door of boring
lacking spirit, inspiration, creativity
on a journey to find her again
or just wake her from hibernation
rebirth, renew, and warmer days ahead
I can't help but smile and see where they lead
the promise in seasons, our promise in Him
His love, His grace, His mercy
never fading.
my faith is a journey, but He is with me every step and stumble of my way
a servant's heart, a humble wife, a woman of God
with an unwavering faith -- are the desires & prayers of my heart
an Easter celebration to come-- preparing my heart and mind
anticipating it like never before, which must be a good sign

prayer-thankfulness-self grace-finding faith and strength- ready for change:
life and purpose in the midst of dishes and dust
a blue sky now, clouds turned to wisps
a beautiful day awaits