Thursday, February 28, 2008

Yummy shrimp recipe

About 2 months ago I was browsing through one of my magazines, and came across a really tasty looking/sounding shrimp recipe. I proceeded to tear it out and stick it to my fridge. Now, I've torn MANY recipes out in the past, but I cannot recall EVER actually making one. The thing that was different about this recipe was that it was healthy, didn't have a huge list of ingredients, and most of the ingredients are things I keep on hand. Some of you already know that I'm not good using recipes. Well, when I bake I use recipes, but I almost never use recipes when cooking dinner type meals. Or I'll use a recipe as a reference and modify it or guesstimate amounts. I don't know why I don't like to use recipes.

Anyway, I actually made this recipe tonight, and OMG it was fantastic!!! I'm not a huge shrimp I like it when you can't taste any shrimp flavor. The kids also ate it, which was a big plus. Hubby said he liked it, and he had seconds of the shrimp...minus the "salad".

So, I'm sharing this recipe...not only so you can all try it, but also so I don't lost the recipe :)

This recipe is from Good Houseke*eping

Sauteed Shrimp on Warm Black Bean Salad

1 1/4 lbs large shrimp shelled and deveined
2 tsp. olive oil
1 lime
1 sm. onion chopped
1 med. red pepper, chopped
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 can (15 to 19 oz.) black beans, rinsed and drained
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro

1. Sprinkle shrimp with 1/4 tsp salt and 1/8 tsp coarsely ground black pepper. In 12-inch non-stick skillet, heat 1 tsp oil on medium x 1 minute. Add shrimp and cook about 6 minutes or until shrimp turn opaque throughout, stirring frequently.
2. Meanwhile, from lime, grate 1 tsp peel and squeeze 2 Tbsp juice; set aside.
3. Transfer shrimp to small bowl; cover with foil to keep warm. In same skillet, heat remaining 1 tsp oil on medium x 1 minute. Add onion and red pepper, and cook 8 minutes or until tender. Stir in cumin; cook 1 minute. Add black beans, lime peel and juice, 1/4 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp black pepper. Cook 3 minutes or until heated through. Spoon black bean mixture onto 4 dinner plates. Top with shrimp and any liquid in bowl; sprinkle with chopped cilantro. ***I squeezed more lime juice on top before serving :)

Each serving:
About 240 calories, 29 g protein, 24 g carbs, 5 gm total fat, 8 g fiber.


Oh, I'm going to Portland tomorrow with the kids to meet up with Auntie Deanna. Going to the zoo, shopping, eating...should be fun.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Moderation is key....unless you're an all or nothing person like me

Last week was pretty much a free-for-all in the food department. After months and months of focusing on healthy eating to get in shape for Cabo, it was somewhat of a release to come home and not worry about what I ate at all. Except that I did worry about it, and I didn't feel great doing it. Eating like crap makes you feel like least in my case...yet I kept doing it because mentally I needed to (or something like that). Last year after Cabo I'm pretty sure I ate crummy for at least a month or something without working out. Not good.
So I'm really trying to focus on moderation. Not stressing about always eating "clean", but eating healthy most of the time, and allowing myself the occasional treat, all the while working out hard. I'm really not good at moderation because I am an "all or nothing" kind of person. I've tried the moderation method before and wasn't very successful. I find that one indulgence leads to's just a slippery slope. I wish I could be one of those people who wants to eat healthy all the time and never crave chocolate, mochas, ice cream, white bread, and cookies. However, I do enjoy all those things, so it's hard to tell myself I can't just eat them whenever I want.
Anyway, I went to the gym yesterday for the first time in 2 months. I had a great workout, and it was nice to do something different. I'm nice and sore today! I think I am going to try to incorporate the gym with the videos as to avoid getting bored with either one.

Also, just had to add that my MIL is here today to watch the kiddos while I work, and she walks in with a blouse I've had in my sewing cabinet for over a year. The blouse was too big, so I was trying to take it in with my Mom's Serger, but the Serger de-threaded (is that a word?) right as I was doing it, so it just left a big hole down the side. So, there the blouse sat, in the cabinet....until my dear MIL rescued it and fixed it for me!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

My mother-in-law

I previously mentioned that I would expand on what my mother-in-law did while Steve and I were in Cabo. Some of you may get extremely jealous that I have such an amazing mother-in-law. First of all, my MIL has always been amazing, but not until I had children did I realize just what a gift she was. She lives 40 miles from us, yet she would drop everything to come over and watch the kids for us. When we had Aaron she was still working full time, but she would take 1-2 days off a week (using her amazing accumulation of sick time) to come and watch Aaron while I worked. She then retired ...wooohooo :) . I would often come home to a clean house and dinner waiting on the stove. She would be at my house early in the morning with a coffee for me from my favorite coffee place. She did this without any expectation or stipulation for something in return. I was in awe (and still am) of how selfless she is. She is also an amazing encourager. She has a gift for finding the good side of every situation. This is despite the fact that she's had so many losses in her life. I could go on and on about how much she means to me. During our trip to Cabo she mostly stayed at our house with the kids, because she knows that they are more comfortable in their own surroundings which means they don't miss mommy and daddy as much. When Steve and I came home, the first thing I noticed was that all of our shoes in our garage had been organized. It usually looks like there was a shoe bomb outside our door, but they were all neatly paired together. Hence, I call her the shoe fairy. The house was so nice and clean when we got home, and I keep discovering new things that she did. She organized my linen closet..."linen fairy", she organized the kids rooms, including going through their clothes to get rid of the ones that are too small, then organizing all their drawers. She had hung or put away all our laundry "laundry fairy", she had organized my silverware drawer "fork fairy". Monday I opened the freezer to find that it was no longer the place where food got stuffed in, only to get lost and never be seen again..."freezer fairy". Then I noticed that my spice cabinet and baking cabinet were organized and cleaner "cabinet fairy". In the midst of all that she cared for my children, drove Aaron to school and picked him up, and took the kids out to ice cream 3x (according to my son). She also kept all my plants alive...well, actually she does this anyway..."plant fairy".
I don't know if she'll read this or not, but I hope she knows how dear she is to me, and I how much I appreciate everything she does for us. Words really could never express my appreciation and love for her. Someday I hope to be to my daughter and daughter-in-law what she has been for me.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Back to reality

So we arrived safely back home on Saturday night. Thank you to my dear mother-in-law for the wonderful care of my children...I'll post more on that later, and thank you to my dear sister for staying at the house with the kids until we got home on Saturday, and for getting us groceries! We really did have a wonderful time....pretty different from last year when we went with some friends, but it was still fun. I'm such a social being, that I was craving some good adult conversation by about Monday evening...DH and I ran out of things to say to each other after spending so much time together Saturday and know...without any interruptions from kiddos and such. Our conversations after Sunday went like this
Me: what should we do today?
DH: I don't know, what do you want to do?
Me: hmmmmm, maybe have some breakfast and lay in the sun
DH: OK, sounds good.

Then at about lunch time it went like this
Me: I'm getting hungry, what do you want to do for lunch?
DH: I don't know, what do you want to do?
Me: Um, let's go eat.
DH: Ok.

Then at about dinner time...

Me: What do you want to do for dinner tonight?
DH: I don't know, what do you want to do?
Me: I've heard good things about such and such a restaurant
DH: Okay, let's do that.


Anyway, we did meet some nice people, got lots of sun. DH read about 1000 pages. I read a great book called The Red Tent, then I went to buy another book a the resort, and tried to get into it, but I just couldn't....

Upon arrival I asked the receptionist if we could have an "ocean front" villa. All of the villas have great ocean views as the resort is set into a huge hill, so each row of villas is set higher than the one in front; however, having a front row villa means that you don't view any roof tops or buildings...just ocean. Luckily we were able to get a front row on the very edge of the resort which means we had what I think is the absolute best view. Below is a picture which I think really shows how close to the ocean we were. almost felt like we were sitting on a cruise ship because if you were in the living room you couldn't see the waves crashing, so it looked like we were sitting on the water.

Here is the red beauty. Art and Beer. :) Our rental car..with no radio (just a big hole), which was actually okay because that way no one would be tempted to break into it.
And here are just some random pictures of the trip...

Cabo is a lovely place to visit in Mexico. It isn't the "prettiest" of places, but the weather is fabulous, and they have all the comforts of home. We love it there, and hope to return in 2010 with the kids and hopefully Auntie Deanna as well :). Let's see, that's only 726 more days :) In the meantime, I've already started planning a vacation to Disneyland, as my dear daughter has never forgotten that we mentioned we would maybe go when she was 5...which will be next Spring.

Monday, February 11, 2008


Just a quick update from Cabo. We arrived safely, although our flight from Medford to Phoenix had no bathroom available. Slightly comical. Upon arriving in the lovely Cabo weather, we made it through customs with no problems, then had no idea where to find our rental car. Of course there is every species of salesman waiting to snatch up any clueless tourist for "a good deal"on a car...and they are all there "to help you". I think Steve was a weeee bit nervous that his dear wife had completely flaked on setting up this rental car situation from word of mouth advise on Trip Advisor. Thankfully we walked around a bit (so glad we were familiar with the airport) and found our guy waiting patiently for us. He runs a private "family" owned car rental business. He leads us to our little red rider (read: red beater), and opens up the trunk for us, only to find a dead body........just kidding, but there were 3 loads of dirty laundry in there to which he exclaimed "what the h.... that's what you get for dealing with a family business". Anyway, we laughed, he was such a nice guy. He says he owns the police down here, so we feel quite confident in driving around.
The weather has been perfect. It was a little overcast the day we arrived, but yesterday and today have been clear and probably in the low 80s....perfect if you ask me. Anyway, there's lots more to tell, but I'll save it for later. Right now, I need a nap! Did I mention we went to bed at 6:30 on Saturday night (that's 5:30 your time). So sad...but we were so tired from getting up at 3:15am or so. We managed to stay up until 9:30 last night (8:30 your time). Wow, what party animals we are!!

I hope you all are doing well ;)

Friday, February 8, 2008

My nationality??

Okay, if you haven't ever visited my sister's blog, now would be a good time, because what I am about to tell you totally coincides with what she just blogged about, and makes it even funnier. So before you read the rest of this post, you've got to go read her most recent post....then come back.

So, this morning I went to a little coffee shop to get a 1/2 pound of coffee to take on our trip, and also get some fresh homemade bagels yummy. This is the conversation I had with the gal at the counter:

Girl: Do you want the bagels to go
Me: go to Mexico ( I just can't help myself...)
Girl: Oh fun, are you leaving today?
Me: No, we are leaving first thing in the morning, and they don't feed you on the plane, so we figured we'd take some bagels with us.
Girl: Cool, are you going to visit family??
Me: uhhhhhhhhh ........................... No, just going on vacation

She must have thought I looked Hispanic. If my mind would have been working a little faster, I would have asked her so. It just so happens that the more tan I get in Mexico, the more the natives start speaking to me in Spanish because they think I am Hispanic. Turns out, I'm just a white girl with olive skin. Most of you know my sister is a blue eyed blonde with light skin. Yep, same parents...go ask them. My mom was asked many times if her daughters had the same father. Who asks that anyway???

Anyway, I thought it was hilarious. I've been asked so many times what my nationality is, and have been told that I look hispanic, greek, Mediterranean, italian...among others.

Less than 24 hours

AAAAHHHHHHH, I can't believe we are now less than 24 hours away! It's especially crazy because I've been counting down the days since about day lie!

My bags are mostly packed, passports ready to go, web check-in for our flight done. I'm trying to figure out how I'm going to sleep tonight, as we have to be up at about 3:30am...and since I never wake up to an alarm clock (blessed I know), I always sleep terribly when I know the alarm clock is on....I'll wake up several times in the middle of the night to see if it's time to get up yet...some anxiety about missing the alarm. Combine that with the excitement about leaving, and it's just not looking good. Oh well, I'll have plenty of time to catch up on sleep :)

I've got our whole week basically planned out, from activities to where we are going to eat. I am the travel agent in the marriage (like my dear sister), so I've made every single reservation/plan/decision about this vacation. I'm pretty sure we wouldn't be going on vacation if my husband were left to the planning :) you honey!

So here is a rundown of our week so that you can live vicariously through me :)

Saturday: arrive in Cabo at 12:05, get rental car, go to grocery store, then to resort for check-in. Lounge on beach for a while, have dinner at resort.
Sunday: Run by Costco (isn't it lovely they have a's right next door to Walmart..which we will not be going to because they don't pay their workers fair wages). Drive up the coast to Todos Santos, stopping at a place called Art and Beer along the way. A must see according to almost everyone.
Monday: Lounge in sun ALL DAY, maybe a massage on the beach, dinner in San Jose Del Cabo.
Tuesday: Meet with Trip Advisor folks to take clothing and other fun things to the kiddos in some of the poor neighborhoods. Come back and have dinner at Mi Casa.
Wednesday: More lounging by the pool, maybe go zip lining...depending on our mood.
Thursday: Valentine's day. Possibly go zip lining if we don't go Wednesday, going to The Office for dinner (feet in sand, water 20 feet away, the best pomegranate margaritas).
Friday: Lounge in sun
Saturday: Come home :(

It just doesn't seem like enough time!!

So I haven't worked out since my crazy Wii workout. My elbow is totally messed up!! I get these sharp shooting pains when I move it certain ways, and my elbow actually has decreased sensation. I'm really glad that I'll have a week of relative inactivity to let it heal.

I hope you all have a wonderful week too! Many of you have requested for me to drink a margarita for you, which I'm happy to oblige!

Tenga un día maravilloso.

My dear sister just made reference to my toes in her blog
so I thought I'd share them :) I hope none of you have strange feelings towards feet. I think they are quite FESTIVE!!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Wii Boxing...

So yesterday, I was feeling little schizo with the workout, so I decided to do intermittent squats, lunges, push-ups and situps throughout the day. I think I did about 80 of each. Then I decided I would do Wii boxing with my weighted gloves to get a little extra workout. I ended up burning about 250 calories doing 30 minutes of boxing. However, when I took the gloves off, I noticed my left hand was feeling a little in it wasn't working right. When I tried to type, it felt like I still had weights on my fingers. My wrist and fingers did not want to extend beyond neutral, and when I tried all my fingers would start shaking. Ya, nice huh. So this morning my elbow is all wacky, and my left hand is still lame. I think I irritated a nerve or 2. In my world I'd diagnose myself with acute lateral epicondylitis, mostly known as tennis elbow. Never knew the Wii could be that dangerous huh!!

Luckily, I'm right handed so all will be well. I did get some upper body soreness from the boxing though, so at least I was working something.

Note to more boxing with weighted gloves!!

Monday, February 4, 2008

To do list

Things I need to get done in the next 5 days

1) Workout 5x
2) Go tanning x 1
3) Buy coffee from Good Bean to take to Cabo
4) Buy toys and school supplies for kiddos in Cabo
5) Get hair done (those dang gray hairs!!)
6) Get a pedicure
7) Pack
8) Organize all paperwork/reservations to take
9) Leave message on work phone that I am out of the office
10) Set email to "out of office"
11) Finish cleaning out the fridge
12) Pack some more
13) Scream in excitement that I'll be lounging by the pool this time next week
14) Buy some Valentine's goodies for kids and Grandma
15) Bake or buy some goodies to take for traveling
16) Find a picture of our friend Antonio to take to him in Cabo
17) Pray for good weather, safety, and that the kids won't miss us much
18) Pray that I can focus on work for the next 3 days!!