Posted in cooking, dinner, family, kitchen, Lesli, love, snow, surprise, walk, wife, tagged cooking, dinner, family, kitchen, Lesli, love, snow, surprise, walk, wife on December 31, 2011 |
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In the past year I may have experienced every positive human emotion. Gratitude, when I realized my neighbors watched for Lesli and me, by shoveling after the snow. Awestruck surprise, when Daisy invited me and two other ladies into her personal kitchen for an unforgettable cooking lesson. Pride, when I received the dean’s award. Joy, when Arthur asked me to marry him.
It would seem my heart has overflowed with all good emotions. Honestly, last year when I was watching the confetti drop on Times Square I never expected any of this. As 2011 comes to a close, this photo (snapped when I stepped away from the table during a dinner outing with Daisy) seems most appropriate.
Cherish Live Dream Lesson 2011
Cherish Yesterday – Live Today – Dream Tomorrow
As I think of 2012 I will be completing my degree and taking a walk to the altar. I look forward to more good things as the year starts in a few hours. I look forward to becoming a wife, and making a start as a family. What do you have happening in 2012?
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Posted in chicken, dinner, event, Facebook, family, fish, food, Latino, Lesli, salad, school, tropical, Twitter, wedding, wife, tagged chicken, dinner, event, Facebook, family, fish, food, Latino, Lesli, salad, school, tropical, Twitter, wedding, wife on December 5, 2011 |
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You may have seen my update on Facebook or Twitter:
It’s not Christmas but Arthur gave me something sparkly.
After Thanksgiving dinner, while the rest of the family lounged over dessert, Arthur suggested we move to the living room. He gave me a beautiful engagement ring, which made me lose my breath and giggle like a little girl. I ran to the dining room and flashed the ring. The adults refused to believe it until Arthur proposed loud enough for them to hear. We all hugged, some of us got emotional. We all floated away from the table happy and excited. I later learned, Arthur had Lesli approve the ring before presenting it to me.
The next morning it started to hit me. I AM GETTING MARRIED! I have to plan a wedding. Correction, we have to plan a wedding. I have to juggle my work schedule while finishing this semester, then Spring 2012, at least, before becoming Arthur’s wife (or as Latinos say, la señora de Arturo). Add in Arthur’s work schedule and we have a lot to coordinate while planning for the joyous event.
There are so many things to be planned, purchased, paid for, positioned. Every time I turn around it seems another item is added to the list.
So far we have decided a few things:
- Ceremony location – the place where we met.
- Colors – ocean and sand (shush, it’s better than blush and bashful in Steel Magnolias).
- Theme – tropical, beach, relaxed.
- Wedding date – early summer, after school ends for me and the children we want in the procession.
Invitations and printed items are still to be decided. Call me a digital bride, I fail to understand the need for tissue over the invitation. I also wonder about response cards. So many people call, text or email with questions. Enclosing these extras with the invitation seems a bit unnecessary unless the menu has choices like beef, chicken or fish. Which leads me to:
The reception menu is still to be decided. So far we know we want to share our favorite foods. We both enjoy sushi, barbecue, pasta, rice, seafood, pastries, cakes, you name it. This also leads to another sticky point:
We will not serve liquor during our reception, except perhaps for the toast.
As I mentioned above, so many things I never considered are now becoming important. What seems most important right this minute is to practice the following phrase, maybe use it two times a day during the planning and decision time:
I need to check with Arthur on that.
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Posted in chicken, dinner, drink, food, Lesli, lunch, recipe, restaurant, Sabroso Saturday, tagged chicken, dinner, drink, food, Lesli, lunch, recipe restaurant, Sabroso Saturday on July 22, 2011 |
If you stepped outdoors (in the United States) recently, you will agree that the weather is blistering, sweltering, steaming, fry-an-egg-on-the-sidewalk, HOT! Weather people keep finding new ways to explain why this is happening, how long this will last, and so forth.
All I know is, it’s too hot to turn on the stove. So I decided to make a meal that ANYBODY can make. One knife, a bunch of spoons and forks. A versatile meal or snack. And for the first time on my Sabroso Saturday recipe entries, I will be sharing the PRICE of the food items used. Because when I go to a restaurant the first question is “what looks good?” and the second question is “how much does that cost?”
So here’s what I used to make these arroz con pollo (chicken and rice) wraps for dinner one night.
- Chicken from hot case at market (about 1/2 pound, $3.29)
- Rice from hot case at market (about a pound $2.39)
- Old El Paso black beans ($2.29 at Walgreens)
- Flatout wraps ($2.99 for 6 at Walgreens)
- Brad’s Organic Salsa (from my fridge, I think about $2)
There was only a little prep I had to do. The beans went in the microwave – in the pouch – for one minute. While that was going, I chopped the chicken into bite-size pieces.
For Lesli’s wrap, I used rice, beans and chicken. For my wrap, I used rice, beans, chicken and salsa. By the time I was ready to take the first bite of my wrap, Lesli was almost ready for another wrap. Then she took a sip of her icy-cold drink, and asked me to hide the wrap so she could have it for lunch. I am making a note to serve more high-fiber meals in this heat, so we feel full longer.
It’s time now to do the math: the total spent for three wraps was $12.96. We still have a little bit of rice, some beans, two big pieces of chicken, three wraps, and most of the salsa. Not bad, if I say so myself. Now, you tell me if it looks good. Yeah, I used the knife so we wouldn’t have to pick up the whole wrap like a burrito.
Chicken Rice Arroz Pollo Wraps
I wrote this post as part of the Sabroso Saturday blog hop originated by MsLatina. She writes a post each week at her site – then other bloggers add links to their recipes. I would suggest grabbing note cards, stocking up on ink for your printer, because you will want to try more than one of these recipes!
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Posted in chicken, dinner, family, fruit, home, kid, kitchen, lunch, nutrition, recipe, Sabroso Saturday, snack, travel, tagged chicken, dinner, family, fruit, home, kid, kitchen, lunch, nutrition, recipe, Sabroso Saturday, snack, travel on June 24, 2011 |
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Here we are, the end of June. Children are now home all day long, they have friends dropping by at any time of day or night – hey, school’s out for summer! Or maybe your kids are going to day camp, and need to take snacks or lunches. Whatever your situation, there’s probably travel involved.
Some moms are like Alice from the Brady Bunch, with a magical never-ending supply of snacks. Others may be more like me. I go to the kitchen, open the cabinet or refrigerator, and ask myself “what can I put with what?”
This recipe comes from www.kraftrecipes.com, where my search for “fruit salad” and “under 10 minutes” kept me busy for a while. Finally it came down to this one, with simple ingredients and an elegant, fancy presentation. This salad can be served as in the photo for a dinner with your sweetheart, prepare it in a container for a picnic – or to keep in your cooler for a family outing to the amusement park. (We all know the feeling of “HOW MUCH FOR A HOT DOG?“)
I think the most difficult part of this recipe is slicing the apples. Please be careful when working with knives! (Nutritional information is at the bottom)
Apple Pecan and Gorgonzola Side Salad from KraftRecipes
Apple, Pecan and Gorgonzola Side Salad
total time 5 min
prep 5 min
servings 4 servings
2 Granny Smith apples, sliced
2 Tbsp. toasted PLANTERS Chopped Pecans
2 Tbsp. ATHENOS Crumbled Gorgonzola Cheese
1/2 cup GOOD SEASONS Italian Dressing Mix, prepared with balsalmic vinegar
ARRANGE apples on four salad plates.
SPRINKLE with pecans and cheese.
TOP with dressing.
A serving of this salad makes a great accompaniment to 3 oz. of cooked turkey, chicken or pork and your favorite steamed vegetable.
How to Toast Nuts
Toasting nuts adds crunch and intensifies their flavor. To toast nuts in the oven, spread nuts in single layer in shallow baking pan. Bake at 350°F for 8 to 10 min. or until golden brown, stirring occasionally. To toast nuts on the stovetop, place nuts in ungreased skillet. Cook on medium heat until golden brown, stirring frequently. To toast nuts in the microwave, place up to 1 cup of nuts in a microwaveable shallow dish. Microwave on HIGH until fragrant and crisp, stirring every 30 sec.
nutritional information per serving
Calories 210 Total fat 18 g Saturated fat 3 g Cholesterol 5 mg Sodium 400 mg Carbohydrate 12 g
Dietary fiber 2 g Sugars 10 g Protein 2 g Vitamin A 0%DV Vitamin C 6%DV Calcium 4%DV Iron 0%DV
This post is part of MsLatina’s Sabroso Saturday blog hop. Check in at her site for recipes from bloggers across the country, and from all corners of the internet. Sometimes they involve slow cookers for “set it and forget it”, sometimes the recipes are simple enough for kids, sometimes there are videos. Every week the recipes make me drool!
DISCLOSURE: The link “Alice from the Brady Bunch” goes to Amazon, where you can buy a book of recipes by Ann B. Davis, the actress who played Alice. If you buy the book through that link, I get a percentage of the sale.
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Posted in dinner, ducks, Lesli, love, school, walk, week, wife, ww - Wordfilled Wednesday, tagged dinner, ducks, Lesli, love, school, walk, week, wife, ww-Wordfilled Wednesday on June 21, 2011 |
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*Hi everyone – I’m encouraging Lesli to write more often, especially when she notices unusual things. Below is what she told me about her walk home, on a warm day. She wrote it herself. Since Lesli was not directly involved in the incident, she included a photo of the tree, not the person.*
Not very long ago – a couple weeks at most – I was walking home from school when I made a quick decision to take the long way home (the weather was perfect for the park, I was late anyway..) I spotted a man, in his 50s or 60s, sitting on a picnic blanket under a tree.
He was talking to himself so I thought he was just another crazy. I walked by slowly. As I was walking past, I saw him searching for something. Just to be polite, I asked, “Do you need something? Can I help you?” He blinked at me. “I was just looking for my paper towels. I made a mess of my dinner.” I peeked over his shoulder to see overturned marinara sauce and an urn. I looked questioningly at the urn, and he noticed the expression on my face. “Today is the one year anniversary of my wife’s death. She loved coming to this lake and watching the ducks swim past. After dinner, I’m going to put some of her ashes into the lake with the ducks.”
This was way more information than I ever wanted to know about a stranger in the park, but I was kind of glad that he shared his story with me. How do you remember your loved ones that have passed away?
Walking Past Tree
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Posted in breakfast, cooking, dinner, event, food, giveaway, Latina, Latino, Lesli, lunch, New York, nutrition, recipe, restaurant, review, school, Twitter, week, winner, tagged breakfast, cooking, dinner, event, food, giveaway, Latina, Latino, Lesli, lunch, New York, nutrition, recipe, restaurant, review, school, Twitter, week, winner on May 22, 2011 |
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A few weeks ago we attended the McDonald’s First Taste event in New York City. I picked up Lesli from school. When we first got to the restaurant Lesli and I sat in a quiet spot to eat an Asian Salad with grilled chicken (available for a limited time this summer), but pretty soon we caught on to where the action was happening: the Nugget Corner on the second floor.
This section of the restaurant had everything: comfy lounge chairs, sunlight, and quick access to the steps. When Lesli and I came over, the ladies were laughing and relaxing. Melanie’s baby sat quietly in his car seat, while she chatted with Jennifer, Johanna, Ruby and me. Lesli stayed nearby, and occasionally made fun faces at Ruby’s gorgeous daughter. I mean, really, have you seen this cutie?
We passed each other Mango Pineapple Smoothies, Premium Chicken Sandwiches and Chicken McNuggets with all the new sauces: Chipotle Barbecue (smoky with a kick), Creamy Ranch, Hot Mustard, Spicy Buffalo and Sweet Chili (jelly with flecks of spicy chili pepper) while waiting to interview the speakers. Chef Dan Coudreaut, Julia Braun and Sylvia Meléndez-Klinger were available to answer questions about these tasty new dishes. Chef Dan even did a cooking demonstration while he offered suggestions (use less oil) and answered questions for the entire group.
I sat with Sylvia Meléndez-Klinger, registered dietitian, to discuss the new menu items. This video starts right after I asked “what has been your involvement?” We go from there to talk about McDonald’s, nutrition and food, even our comments about the dreaded “D word” for Latinas and Latinos.
Now to the giveaway. Since Sylvia shared so much about how to balance calories, taste and eating out, I am asking you to go to McDonald’s website and Bag a McMeal. Then come back here, leave a comment detailing your meal. Was it breakfast, lunch or dinner? How many calories did you end up? Keep in mind U.S. Government guidelines recommend about 2000 calories per day for adults over age 18.
Five (5) winners will be selected at random, to win a goodie bag from McDonald’s. This black bag, with two pockets on the outside for “mobile” (cell phone) and “H2O” (water), comes packed with:
- Tips and recipes from Chef Dan
- A lavender scented satin eye mask
- A pineapple scented soy candle
- A mango scented soy candle
- A bamboo and green pen
- A green and black spiral notebook and pen set
- A black balance bracelet
$10 $25 (updated 5/25) Arch card (McDonald’s gift card)
Entries will be accepted until 11:59 Friday, June 17 and I will announce the winners by June 21.
Your mandatory entry, is a comment detailing your McMeal. For extra entries leave a comment after you:
- follow @McDonald’s on Twitter
- follow @OfeliaNJ on Twitter
- follow @SKlingerRD (Sylvia Meléndez-Klinger) on Twitter
- or subscribe to my e-mail newsletter (top left corner of this screen).
One comment counts as one entry. One bag per winner.
DISCLOSURE: The compensation level for this post is CL 10. Products or services were provided to OfeliaNJ to give away in a contest, and to keep for use or review.
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Posted in breakfast, comfort, dinner, food, Lesli, recipe, Sabroso Saturday, snow, tagged breakfast, comfort, dinner, food, Lesli, recipe, Sabroso Saturday on May 20, 2011 |
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It seems the weather has been on some type of delay – we had snow in April now rain in May. This means I haven’t quite figured out whether to put away the galoshes, or start shopping for barbecue supplies. I mean, any minute now we should have warm weather for barbecues. Any minute now we should have fireflies in the evening.
With this confusing weather, my taste buds have also been out of whack. I ate spicy chopped tomatoes with jalapeño peppers, and whole grain chips. Had hummus straight from the container. Wednesday night, though, I had my favorite meal of the week. Breakfast for dinner. If you’ve never had breakfast for dinner, give it a try. Until then, I have two words for you: comfort food.
Lesli made one fried egg on a raft of turkey bacon. It was so simple it can barely be called a recipe.
- Take two slices of turkey bacon. Cut each in half with kitchen scissors.
- Arrange the bacon strips into a grid, in a nonstick pan over medium-low flame. More low than medium.
- When the bacon starts to get crispy, crack one egg into the center of the bacon grid.
- If desired, add one or two tablespoons of water to the pan, away from the egg and bacon.
- Put a lid, glass if possible, over the bacon and eggs, so the steam cooks everything.
- Stay near the stove. If your lid is not glass, wait at least three minutes before checking.
- Serve with whole-wheat toast.
When Lesli brought up the bacon-and-egg creation, I put it on the toast. The egg was over-medium, just how I like. The white was fully cooked, the yolk was a little soft. Much more fun than eating an overdone, gummy egg. Besides, the bacon under the egg was crunchy enough. Why mess around?
This post is part of MsLatina’s Sabroso Saturday blog hop. Check in at her site for recipes from other bloggers across the country, and from all corners of the internet. Get your napkins ready, all these recipes are going to make you drool!
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