Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Garlic Herb Chicken and Veggies

I think it's pretty clear at this point that I'm a lazy cook.  Maybe one day I'll make my own marinades.  Gotta dream big!  But for now, there's Lawry's.

Garlic Herb Chicken and Veggies
(This recipe is a Dave special!)

- Chicken
- Mushrooms
- Red peppers
- Green onions
- Garlic
- Butter
- Lawry's Garlic & Herb Marinade

1.  Melt a hunk of butter over medium heat, add chicken.

2.  While chicken is cooking slice up those green onions and your pepper.

3.  Add all your veggies and a heaping spoonful of garlic to the pan.  Give it a generous squirt of marinade.

4.  Simmer on medium heat until the veggies soften and the chicken is no longer pink inside.

Turn down the heat as you go to avoid overcooking everything.  If you get impatient or worried that your chicken isn't cooking through, you can cut it into cubes in the pan.  I think the chicken probably soaks up more of the marinade this way too.  I like to cut everything up into bite size pieces while I'm waiting anyway.  We also like to add extra marinade to act as the sauce for the dish.

5.  Serve over rice, enjoy!

I don't think these pictures really do this dish justice but it is delicious.  If you like simple recipes and something you can't really screw up, this one is for you.  Added bonus if your boyfriend will cook it for you!

Does the man in your life have some skills in the kitchen?

Monday, December 26, 2011

Better Than Nothing Workout

I hope Santa treated you well this Christmas.  I'm feeling very blessed.

After eating myself silly for the past week or so, I really wanted to get myself moving today.  So Dave and I took Puddin' for a nice afternoon walk in the park.  I was feeling inspired on our walk, but shortly after I found myself cuddling a certain pooch on the couch and not wanting to move.  Cue internet inspiration.  I signed on to pinterest and saw this:


Have you ever heard of bodyrock tv?  It has a ton of workouts, including ones you can do in your living room with no equipment.  I modified this workout to my liking.

8 Minute Interval Workout

20 sec - Mountain Climbers
10 sec - Rest
20 sec - Jump switch lunges
10 sec - Rest
Repeat for 4 times, 4 minutes total.

Rest for 1 minute. 

20 sec - Push-ups
10 sec - Rest
20 sec - Planks
10 sec - Rest
Repeat for 4 times, 4 minutes total.

8 minutes later, you will be sweaty and feeling it!  This may be my new favorite way to workout.  It's very easy to keep going when you know you'll be done so soon.  I used an online timer to keep track of my intervals.  I had trouble making it through some of the intervals, but I pushed myself and I have room for measurable improvement.

What is your favorite living room exercise?

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas

I forgot to mention one of my favorite Christmas traditions in my last post...

I hope you have a wonderful Christmas!  Or a great Hanukkah!  Or a merry whatever-you-celebrate!

Friday, December 23, 2011

In the air there's a feeling of Christmas...

Finally!  Christmas break... and by break I mean yay for four day weekends.  I'm done shopping, but there's still a lot of work to do.  My sister and I are usually forced to wrap a ton of presents for my parents, but apparently they already got a big head start, which is great because I still have a bunch of presents to wrap anyway.  In addition to wrapping, tomorrow will be spent cleaning the house, baking cookies, running last minute errands, and desperately trying to make my room look less like a hurricane just came through.  It's a constant struggle.

Hey look, I'm crafty!

Ta-freaking-da!  Thank goodness I have some crafty friends because I thought I could attach the flowers with some glue and it was not working out.  The wire that Leah just so happened to bring along was a lifesaver.  Leah and Heather are definitely my crafting mentors!

This weekend will be a whirlwind of everything I love about Christmas. Homemade pierogies. A tree with so many ornaments you may find two on the same branch. Family. Santa coming up the street on a firetruck. Silent night in perfect harmony in a candlelit church. My brother dragging my dad out of bed, filled with excitement. Flipping back and forth to see both of the Christmas parades on TV. Merging traditions. Making new ones.

What are some of your favorite Christmas traditions?

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Pesto Chicken Pizza!

My blog should probably just be called Amber Cooks the Amazing Recipes from Iowa Girl Eats ... it's not very catchy though.  She made this pizza and I couldn't resist recreating it!

Pesto Chicken Pizza

- Trader Joe's whole wheat pizza dough
- Pesto (I used Classico brand)
- Chicken (cooked and chopped)
- Bacon (cooked and chopped)
- Artichoke hearts (chopped)
- Spinach
- Mozzarella
- Parmesan

1.  Spread pizza dough onto greased pan

2.  Layer all ingredients

3. Bake as directed by the dough packaging

4. Try not to food coma!

No, I did not feed my pup any pizza... much to her dismay.

This pizza is SO tasty and super easy!  I love simple recipes and homemade pizza rocks!

What are your favorite pizza toppings?

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Well, hello there 50th post, I thought we'd never meet.

I had plans to write an epic post for my 50th and then I was super busy all week and just never got around to posting at all.  It's definitely a busy time of year.

This week involved some Christmas shopping on Monday, Tuesday was a dentist appointment in Northeast Philly and some lounging for the rest of the night.  Wednesday Heather and I met up for a gym date!  You can read the recap on her blog.  It was so much easier to get motivated with a gym buddy.  We decided to do Melt It Mondays and meet up every Monday night, hopefully we can get in the groove and then add more days after the holidays, but I'm excited about our planned dates.

Thursday night Dave and I headed down to AC for a fun night out!  Yay for comped rooms!  We didn't want to spend money on an overpriced late night dinner when we got there, we just wanted to start drinking and enjoying our night, so we stopped and grabbed some Chipotle on the way down.  When we got there we checked into our room, enjoyed some cocktails, and watched the end of the Flyer's game on the huge flat screen in our room.  The rest of our night consisted of realizing how much I hate slots, getting rocked in black jack, and doing pretty well in my new favorite game, pai gow.  Oh and lots of free cocktails.

We stayed up till 4 am, which is pretty remarkable for us these days.  But that didn't stop us from getting up for the breakfast buffet and when we woke up we realized what a great view we had.

After the breakfast buffet we had one more thing to do before we left AC.

The pool and my poolside strawberry daiquiri with whipped cream were the best way to end our little trip.  Overall we didn't spend a fortune and we had a great time!

The weekend continued with a Friday night happy hour that was a reunion with my old coworkers.  A lot of people came out and it was great to see everyone.  Needless to say, bedtime came early on Friday.  Saturday was a ladies day since Dave went to the Flyers game.  We did some crafting, gossiping, and watched some Say Yes to the Dress.  Saturday night was a neighbor's holiday party with the most amazing spread of delicious food.  Sunday was a bridesmaid planning brunch for all of us in Heather's bridal party.  The brunch was hosted by my friend Leah and involved homemade granola and a delicious veggie fritatta.  I need to get the granola recipe from Leah because you need it in your life.  The day was filled out with lots of football upsets and an early Christmas celebration with Dave's dad's side of the family.  So many delicious feasts, and many more to come!  Planet Fitness, see you tomorrow!  I still have a lot to do before Christmas but yay for a short week!

Are you ready for Christmas?  How do you keep your holiday feasting under control?

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Seems Obvious

My weekend started with a semi-rough Friday.  My stomach was killing me all day.  I drank some coffee in the morning and all day I was thinking it was to blame.  I've been drinking lots of tea lately.  I'll use the same teabag for two or three cups of tea throughout the morning.  I'm loving, it doesn't leave an awful taste in my mouth, give me the jitters, or require lots of sugar and cream like coffee.  I loving having a warm beverage in the morning, so it's working out.

But on Friday, I had coffee.  And a tummy ache.  Then there was this moment where it dawned on me... I ate complete crap all day.

Leftover chicken mixed with broccoli in cheese sauce
1 cup of coffee with peppermint creamer

2 slices of plain pizza, 1 slice veggie pizza
1 cup of Sprite

2 Miller Lite drafts
2 1/2 pierogies with sour cream
A crabcake sandwich with a few french fries

2 glasses of Sprite with Captain
1 slice of plain pizza
3 or 4 mini cocktail hot dogs in crescent rolls
Some chips with dip and salsa

Holy hell.  I really should be fat.  I read healthy living blogs... people that follow vegetarian and vegan diets, people that include vegetables in every meal, and then I eat 4 slices of pizza and drink soda all day.  Epic fail.  It's really eye opening writing it here for everyone.  So I ate like crap and I felt like crap.  As soon as I realized it, it seemed so obvious.  I feel like part of trying to live a healthy lifestyle is just recommitting over and over.

Anyway, Saturday Dave and I spent the day in Philly.  We took the train down in the afternoon and our first stop was our friend Devon's apartment.

After some quality catch up time, we headed out to get some margaritas and awesome Mexican food at Cantina.

Before we left the house in the morning I made a goal to eat vegetarian for the day and just generally to eat better than I did the day before.  So in addition to the veggie egg quesadilla I made for breakfast, I also chose the vegetarian quesadilla for dinner, with some guacamole on the side of course.  Not ridiculously healthy but better than the day before and at least I got my veggies in.

It was extremely tasty and so were the margaritas!  I now know why my friends all rave about this restaurant.

Then we headed to the Flyers game!  The game was exciting, they won and we had a blast!


My Sunday included church, putting hundreds (yes, hundreds) of ornaments on my parents' Christmas tree, taking a nap, and watching football.  Tomorrow is Monday, but I have Friday off and no full weeks of work until the second week of January.  Not too shabby.  Lots to do before the holidays, so I will be busy, busy but I'm really feeling like it's the most wonderful time of the year...

Do you notice a difference in how you feel when you eat healthier?

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

It's beginning to look a lot like...

I'm getting so pumped for Christmas!  It's even making me channel my inner Martha Stuart.  Check out my Jo-Ann Fabrics + Dollar Store creation!

This is my kind of craft... something cheap that takes no skill whatsoever, win.  I think they came out great.  Simple and festive.

We'll see how crafty I feel after I attempt to make the wreath that I have all the supplies for.  Also, I really need to improve my photography skills.  Perhaps a goal for the new year... speaking of goals, I went to the gym tonight!

Today's Workout:
- 25 minutes on the arc trainer, 1:1 interval program
- Lat pull downs
- One arm row
- Tricep kickbacks
- Tricep extensions
- Seated calf extensions
It wasn't the longest workout ever, but I was sweating my butt off and I was definitely feeling it.  Tomorrow = push-ups, maybe even some abs!  Depends how much time I can get on the floor without someone all up in my business....

Is it Friday yet?  I'm always living for the weekend.

Are you crafty?  What's your favorite holiday craft?

Monday, December 5, 2011

My New Baby!

I was supposed to go to the gym this evening... and then I remembered that my new laptop was being delivered today!  Hello new toy!  On Thanksgiving I bought an HP Pavilion from Best Buy's website, I got a great deal and I didn't have to wait in any lines or ruin my holiday.  It has a 17.3 inch screen and I really didn't realize how huge that would be until I pulled it out of the box, it's enormous!  It has 6 GB of RAM, 640 GB of hard drive, and an i7 intel processor... basically it's fricken awesome.

I really shouldn't have blown off the gym... but I haven't bought a new computer since 2004 and I was just too excited, I had to play with it all night!

Merry Christmas to me!
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