No funk?


Wow this month is flying past me! I’m glad I have had a few moments to sit back and take it all in. This is one of the best times of the year, and to miss it completely because I was too busy, overwhelmed, or caught up in the chaos of Christmas would be a shame.

Marlo had her weekly bath, so I wrapped her up in a blanket and cuddled my 40 pound lap dog on the couch for a bit. She loved it. Even though she tried to get down a bunch. Billy didn’t complain, as he said it was an artful way to get around our “no dogs on the couch” rule, since she was on my lap, not the couch.

My Christmas shopping is done, the gifts are wrapped under the tree, and my Christmas goodies are made, cut up and stored in the fridge for later tonight when I will assemble holiday goody bags for my sweet clients, lovely friends, and family. This year I made rocky road and fudge. I think every other year or so I attempt to make fudge, and every time I am mystified how I could have forgotten how labor intensive and tough it can be. I followed the fantasy fudge recipe off the jet puff marshmallow creme jar, and stirred a pot of fat free evaporated milk, lots of sugar and butter FOREVER, then spilled chocolate chips on the burner, made a mess out of the marshmallow creme, and didn’t let the sugar mixture boil long enough so the fudge set a little on the soft side. The rocky road, however, was easy and delicious, so I will continue to make it long after this fudge recipe has been retired.

I just finalized my 26th birthday plans! I will be having dinner at the fabulous Burger in Santa Cruz, CA. It’s actually called “burger.” with a lower case b and a period. Funny right? Billy and I have eaten there a couple of times and were thrilled with our food both times. I am not a red meat fan, so I opt for a wood fired pizzetta or a turkey burger instead. They even make these awesome beer shakes. They have an entire wall menu dedicated to different burger creations, and tell you that’s just he beginning, they can literally do anything you want with your burger, you just have to ask. The restaurant is decorated with a zombie theme, but instead of thinking of eating brains, the zombie all have thought bubbles with burgers in them, very creative. They even project old horror and monster movies on the lobby wall, and play sports on the large TV above the bar. I am excited to eat there again and share this lovely gem with all of my valley dwelling friends who haven’t made the trek over the hill to SC to try out this awesome new installment.

The most interesting thing is happening this year surrounding my birthday. I am not in my usual funk that always makes December an unhappy month for me. I usually become withdrawn, moody, introspective and anti-social in the weeks leading up to my birthday on December 28th, and I never really know why. I get very excited for my birthday early on, usually in August, and start making plans for what I think would be a fun way to celebrate, but starting in October my enthusiasm wanes and I enter the funk right after Thanksgiving. I’m not sure why this year is different and I am my happy cheery self days before my birthday. The only major change that could be contributing to my happiness is my 3-5 day a week I workout, run, or go to spin classes, and the healthy eating I am trying to keep up. Maybe endorphins really do have that much going for them. I accept.

Meatloaf Monday


Every evening Billy or I will take Marlo for her walk. When I take her, I always make note of the strange, exotic, and mouth-watering dinner smells that emanate from all of the homes in our apartment complex. This past weekend, I happened across the most delicious smelling meatloaf. I am not a huge meat fan, and meatloaf isn’t at the top of my list for meals that make me salivate, however, the aromas coming from this apartment were definitely yummy and it made me crave meatloaf of all things! So while many people are taking part in the Meatless Monday campaign and eating their veggies on this cool fall evening, I made turkey meatloaf instead.

I was inspired by this recipe, but was out of eggs and milk, so I improvised and came up with something new. Here is the recipe I used instead. It smelled delicious while it cooked, and now that I am eating it, it totally wins! So glad I made the substitutions that I did 🙂

Adrian’s Italian turkey meatloaf

  • 1lb lean ground turkey
  • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cup Italian bread crumbs
  • 1/4 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup ketchup (you can also use marinara sauce, but I like ketchup)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl combine turkey, ricotta, and bread crumbs. Mix in salt, pepper, oregano and garlic powder. Add water as needed and combine until sticky. Transfer to a loaf pan and top with shredded mozzarella, then ketchup.  Bake at 400 degrees for 1 hour.

Makes 4 servings

calories: 287, fat: 11.32, carbs: 18.3, fiber: 0.4 and only 7 Weight Watchers points per serving. (I created this recipe on the daily plate and it gave me the nutritional information based on the ingredients I listed, such a helpful tool!)

I don’t care if Monday’s blue


Wow guys, the weather where I live went from 95 degrees a few days ago to chilly and raining on Sunday! Because of the new doggy, I got to take a walk in the rain yesterday, something I haven’t willingly done in years. Not that I was entirely willing to do it yesterday, but duty (or dooty ha ha) calls.

I usually enjoy the rain…on one condition; I don’t have to do anything in it. I don’t like driving in the rain because everyone becomes grannies or fast and furious drivers. I don’t like being out of the nice, warm and cozy house where I could be cuddled up on the sofa with a blanket and a good book. I especially don’t like to walk in it because it soaks my hair and clothes and chills me to the bone.

But for this face,

I would do pretty much anything. It’s puppy love ❤

I also got to go for an evening walk with the pup and with the hubby! Billy isn’t really all that active. He just got a new bike, so he’s been riding a little bit, but he isn’t the kind of guy who will suggest a brisk stroll around the block, a hike, or pretty much anything with exercise, so it was a treat for me to get to walk hand in gloved hand with my man and our dog. I can see this becoming a tradition whenever possible, I just loved it!

Meg, of Life of Meg, is hosting her fabulous Mingle Monday over on her blog, you should stop by and check it out, maybe find a few new blogs to follow. I have been totally inspired by a few blogs I have found recently through Mingle Monday, so hopefully you get some new reading material that inspires and enlightens you also!