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Tuesday, March 27

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.

If you follow me on twitter, then you know that yesterday I spent a chunk of my day at the optometrist's office because my eyelid is infected. I won't even bother grossing you out with a photo, though today I look a little less like I have a black eye. Let's just say that it's uncomfortable and the medication is expensive.

In light of this, I'm even more grateful for the Happy List linky party hosted by Mamarazzi today because I really need to focus on some happy today.


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1. This is my first blog post from my shiny new laptop. The Mister and I picked up my new MacBook Pro on Sunday, and I'm so thrilled with it. I have just about everything set up for it at home and work, and it's so much nicer than both my previous home and work computers.

2. On Saturday, we invited my MIL over for dinner and made home-made pizza. Yum, yum, yum. You just can't beat a great meal and good company on a stormy spring evening.
Homemade Pizza [Happy List at High-Heeled Love]

3. Like everyone else in the blogisphere, we went to see The Hunger Games over the weekend. Of course, the book is always better than the movie, but I really enjoyed the screen adaptation. It was fun to see their interpretation of some of the "special effects" in the book. Of course, now I'm wishing movies two and three were done so we can go right into those.

4. And one more note on the movie, if you haven't picked up the soundtrack for the movie, you're really missing out. It's excellent. I've been listening to it almost exclusively for the last week and just can't get enough.


Want to play along? Click the button to link your Happy List up with Mamarazzi.



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Thursday, March 22

We had a friend over for dinner, and I tried out this Real Simple recipe. The verdict is in; I will not be making stovetop risotto anymore. Baking is soo much easier.
The tiny portion of leftovers that I have for lunch.

Serves 4
Hands-on Time: 10m
Total Time: 35m
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 shallot, chopped
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 3 cups low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 cup Arborio rice
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 4 ounces flat-leaf spinach, roughly chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan (1 ounce), plus more for serving
Directions
1. Heat oven to 425° F. Heat the butter in a medium Dutch oven or ovenproof pot over medium-high heat. Add the shallot, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring often, until soft, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the wine and cook, stirring, until almost evaporated, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the broth and rice and bring to a boil.
2. Cover the pot and transfer to oven. Cook until the rice is tender and creamy, 20 to 25 minutes.
3. Add the peas, spinach, Parmesan, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper to the pot and stir to combine. If the risotto is too thick, stir in up to ¼ cup hot water. Sprinkle with additional Parmesan before serving.


To make the recipe a tad bit quicker, I just bought baby spinach and skipped the chopping. I paired this with lemon pepper rotisserie chicken and bakery bread and butter.
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Tuesday, March 20


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My Happy List is short and simple this week. I'm happy that the Mister had a great time at his jujitsu convention, but I'm more happy that he's home. I missed him so much.

Want to play along? Click the button to link your Happy List up with Mamarazzi (and Big Daddy, who is guest posting today).
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Sunday, March 18


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Because confession is good for the soul.

I confess...

This post is coming a day late because when the Mister's away I get to play. When the Mister is away I do things like have just guacamole and chips for dinner and watch hours of Vampire Diaries on end. I also went to our neighbor's birthday cocktail party and have plans to go see a chick flick tonight.

I confess...

I straight up lost a brand new bottle of nail polish the other day. It came in the mail, I opened the package, enjoyed the free sample of hand cream and then completely misplaced the polish. I have no idea where it went. And it's such a shame because I had waiting on that color to give myself a manicure.

I confess...

My favorite part of St. Patrick's Day is the it is also the birthday weekend for one of our local radio stations, and they play U2 all day as a celebration. The perfect background for in the car when running errands.

I confess...

My SIL texted me that she and my brother have booked their plane tickets for their next visit home. I may done a little happy dance on the spot. I miss those two can't wait to spend a whole week with them. Maybe we'll convince them to move home to South Carolina?

I confess...

I'm not sure about this making coffee for myself in the mornings. It tastes so much better when the Mister brings it to me each morning. I'm so spoiled. =D


Want to play along with Friday Confessional? Click the button to link up with Mamarazzi.

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Tuesday, March 13


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Hey y'all!

I hope everyone's week has been fabulous so far. I spent my morning in continuing education so during some of the talks, I had time to brainstorm on what's making me happy this week. Here's what's on my Happy List today:

  1. The battery for my laptop came in yesterday. No more sharing the Mister's computer (not that I'm not grateful for his generosity).
  2. Things have been going well at work lately, and we got the preliminary tax numbers back from the accountant. It looks like I may be getting a new computer. I've been lusting after a shiny new MacBook Pro for a long, long time.
  3. I had a really good phone conversation with an old friend of my mom's yesterday. Sometimes life gets in the way, and it's too easy to let the years slip away without reaching out.
  4. I have a weekend of pampering time schedule this weekend since the Mister will be busy at a martial arts convention. I see a cocktail party with the ladies, a bubble bath, pedicure and girly tv time in my near future.
  5. And on the note of martial arts, my jujitsu training has been rocking lately. A couple months ago, I was telling the Mister how frustrated I was with Nage (throwing techniques), and I'm proud to say that I feel like I'm starting to get the concepts a little. My sore muscles are proof that I'm getting a good workout in. I love feeling fit, strong and trim.
  6. Hello, Springtime! We've had the windows open for the last week, and this morning I notice our dogwood tree is blooming.
If you want to play along, click the button to link your Happy List up with Mamarazzi.

Also, today in my fabulous Favorite Things swap partner's second wedding anniversary. Head over to her blog Life After the Aisle to leaver her some love.

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Monday, March 12

On Sunday, our church held its second annual chili cook-off to benefit the youth missions. The Mister and I entered this yummy chicken chili from The Runaway Spoon and won "Corny-iest Chili." Last year, we won "Most Savory Chili."

Photo credit: The Runaway Spoon

Tuxedo Chili
Black and White Bean Chicken Chili
Serves 6. If you prefer, you can use ground turkey.

1 medium white onion
2 garlic cloves
1 Tablespoon oil
2 pounds ground chicken
2 teaspoons dried oregano (preferably Mexican)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 cups water
3 (15 ounce) cans canellini or great northern beans
2 cups chicken broth
1 (16 ounce) can black beans
1 (16 ounce) package frozen white shoepeg corn
1 (4.5 ounce) can chopped green chiles

  • Chop the onion and garlic finely. Add to the oil in a large Dutch oven . Saute over medium high heat until soft and translucent. Do not brown. Remove the onions and garlic to a bowl and set aside. (If the onions brown and overcook, the final color of the chili will be muddy. It will still taste delicious, but won’t look as nice. You can always top it with lots of cheese).
  • Add the ground chicken to the pan and cook until browning slightly, breaking up into small pieces. Mix the oregano, cumin, chili powder, pepper and cinnamon in a small bowl, then sprinkle over the chicken. Add the onions and garlic. Pour in three cups of water and bring to a boil. Lower heat to a simmer and cook until the water has reduced by half and the chicken is cooked through.
  • Meanwhile, drain and rinse two cans of white beans. Place in a blender with the chicken broth and puree until smooth. Drain and rinse the remaining white beans and the black beans. Pour the pureed beans into the chicken mixture and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to medium, add the drained beans, corn, and green chiles and simmer until cooked through and thickened, about 30 minutes.
  • Serve in big bowls topped with grated cheese, sour cream and chopped cilantro.

Of course, I left the cilantro out. I think if I were to make this again, I'd add one more can of black beans to give it more of a black and white feel.


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Friday, March 9


I am still extremely  busy at work so in lieu of Friday Confessional (and since I've linked my Favorite Things reveal post with Mamarazzi today), I'm going to link up with Mrs. Monologue's Fur Baby Friday this week. Here's what's been going on in the world of my girls lately.
Tessa might love living with my MIL, but she sure misses the Mister a lot.
The girls went to a doggy birthday party last month and made a new friend.
While the Mister and I had dinner with our neightbors, Paige snuggled up with her best friend, River Girl.
Want to play along? Click the button to link your Fur Baby Friday post up with Mrs. Monologues.


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This is a post that I've been trying to get to all week, but I am still sharing a computer with the Mister at home, and it just hasn't happened. Yay, for my new battery arriving next week!

I received my Favorite Things Swap package on Monday. What a way to start the week! My partner is Ashley from Life After the Aisle. Go check her blog out; she's such a doll. As always, Mamarazzi did a fabulous job pairing us up; Ashley's favorite things were things I would have picked out for myself.

Here's what she sent me.
I love that the package was complete with hot pink bubble wrap!


It's always most fun to start with the sweets...Ashley's favorite treats included Starburst jelly beans, chewing gum and chocolate truffles.




I didn't take pictures of every note, but Ashley explained why each item was a favorite of hers. She said that she loves the owl trend, and picked these earring after reading my 11 questions post.


I was thrilled to receive this little kitchen doodad that will pull a hot pan or oven rack out; I hate sticking my hand in a hot oven.

Ashley's favorite beauty items include tinted lip gloss and mascara. The mascara couldn't have come at a better time as I was just about to shop for a new formula myself. I love the length this style gives as well as the shoe reference.
 And the package rounded out with a note from Ashley and some cute little initial notecards to go in my stationary collection.

Much thanks to Ashley for such a fabulous package and to Mamarazzi for hosting another successful, fun swap!

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Friday, March 2


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Because confession is good for the soul.
I confess...

Now that it's March, I want to do is go outside and play in the sunshine.
All images via weheartit

I also confess that I have way too much work to do today so I won't be making a full confessional post.

Have a Happy Friday, lovelies!


If you want to play along , click the button to link your Friday Confessional up with Mamarazzi.

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