Friday, January 29, 2010

Recipes #1 & 2 - Jamie on a Friday

Recipes #1 & #2:

Jamie Oliver's Fish Pie & Banana Tarte Tatin

It's not especially beautiful in this shot (and please ignore the nasty bits on the stove), but this fish pie was chock full of salmon, swordfish, and shrimp, as well as plenty of cheese and potatoes. Ken and I agreed that it was missing a little "something," but Jamie recommends serving it with ketchup and ketchup makes everything delicious, right? Next time I think we'll use parmesan or something saltier for the cheese.  
Then for dessert, we hit up another Jamie recipe. Although we didn't feel like buying superfine sugar for one recipe and thus, the caramel didn't dissolve properly (or get golden brown), this was delicious! Now I need to figure out what to make with the other half of the puff pastry.

What's the deal with all of the Jamie recipes? I had a $50 gift card from my birthday LAST year and on a whim finally decided to spend it on "Jamie's Food Revolution." Between these recipes and my new "Pioneer Woman Cook's" recipe book, this number on my list will likely be taken off quickly and efficiently.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Day Zero

The list is finally ready! I've posted it on this blog (rather than the Shaking Off the Dust) and I'm ready to cross some items off! As I mentioned before, it's difficult to predict what life changes will occur in the next 2.75 years, but hopefully, this list will bring some great memories and help me to take care of some lingering items.

Here's to a successful 2010, 2011, & part of 2012!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

The List

This list has been a bit more daunting than I originally thought. I'm at #81 and struggling to come up with 20 more! Help?!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

The List

I've hit the big 3-0 with grace (at least I hope it was graceful). I also hope that the next ten years bring as many amazing experiences, new friends, and new foods as my 20s did. I also have 9 years to plan my next tattoo. My "thing" is that I'd like to get a tattoo to best represent the decade that I just finished. Thus, my 20s are represented by a design that reminds me of travels and is also on my foot, reminding me of all that my little toes have traveled.

My 101 list is 3/4 of the way done and I hope to have it done by the weekend! I want to start crossing things off!!!

I've also booked my ticket to Australia and am ready to put in some long hours to get the students (and myself) ready.

In the meantime... Cheers to 2010!

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Celeb Blogging

Now that I’m back to blogging, I wanted to share something that I find absolutely awesome! So I started reading a blog on in Japan about self-worth and body image. Along the way, the author joined Facebook and asked her readers to become her “friend,” which I did. I still read her blog on a daily basis and she has also appeared on the Today show and other various news segments (so she’s a bit of a celebrity). I even opened up a “Health” magazine the other day and there she was! With an article!

Anyways, she has “thumbs upped” my photos and posts on occasion and then today I commented on her post asking for advice on what to read. She not only responded on the comment, but also wrote me a note on my blog. I’m friends with a celebrity!!! Wahoo! I might also be amped up on excitement for my birthday, going to Australia & because of my new mantras that I’m repeating, but still! I think it’s cool. Maybe you don’t?!

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Pondering a Decade

In just four short days, I will officially be leaving my Roaring 20s and heading into the 30s (Depression Era?!?! - just kidding). The last 10 years have been full of new experiences and adventures.

Some of the tops?

1) Visited over 15 countries.
2) Slept at the foot of Mount Everest and at a 4 a.m. pee break, looked up to see the moonlight on the finally revealed peak.
3) Experienced a violent storm across the road from the Great Wall.
4) Zipped on the back of a complete stranger's motorbike in Vietnam.
5) Got caught in a downpour after riding bikes to Franz Josef Glacier in New Zealand.
7) Ate numerous helpings of zenzai while lounging on Okinawa's beaches.
8) Overcame my fear of karaoke.
6) Got Simon the Peacock added to my foot in honor of my love of Pier 1 and Indian motifs.
7) Worked a range of jobs from being a teacher to working at a video store to manning a copier to living in Japan to working in luxury travel to working with study abroad students.
8) Lived in two dorm rooms, 6 apartments, & various extended stays at my parents' house.
9) The beginnings of a love for indie films, indie music, and a slightly indie lifestyle.
10) Went from never having set foot in a gym to becoming a gym rat.
11) Walked the streets of Cambridge and introducing the now famous, "eat a bit, drink a bit, have dessert, drink a bit more, eat a bit more" method of trying to stay warm during winter months.
12) Learned to be comfortable enough to go to a movie at any time all by myself. (also can now eat at a restaurant by myself and not feel weirded out by it)
13) Got my belly button pierced and then 5 years later, lost ring in a toilet at the Dalai Lama's home.
14) Began an addiction to NY Times crossword puzzles and hopefully, in the next decade, proceed past Wednesdays!
15) Became the queen of flashing peace signs in photos.

Ah, good times, good times.

And as I enter this next stage and as my last 101 list from Japan has expired, I'm working on a new list which will be posted here shortly. I'm only on #30 but hope to have it complete by the weekend and then I can start crossing items off.

It's odd because these lists truly reflect what is most important at the time that they were composed. In 2.75 years, perspective changes and items that were once relevant cease to even be a goal any more.

Currently, my list has a very "health-focused" feel to it. This is in part to the fact that I am itching to overcome my back injury and mostly due to my recent readings of books like "Ominivore's Dilemma" & "In Defense of Food," as well as viewings of documentaries like "Food, Inc." However, as I start to approach the time in my life when it's important to make good health decisions for later, there are definitely worse things that I could be focusing on!

I've also been trying to show my hand in the kitchen more often and this evening's shrimp 'n grits and last week's caramel from scratch lead me to believe I might actually find success in more instances than not! I'm going to continue to try new recipes and hopefully stretch myself even more.

Enough for now. The list will be posted shortly and then hopefully Rachel will be back in the blogging world once again!