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  1. Steak Quesadillas

    Wednesday, February 27, 2013

    Steak Quesadillas

    - corn tortillas
    - cheese (any cheese you want, I used Muenster here because it was on sale)
    - taco meat (in Mexican grocery stores they have beef cut into tiny cubes, labeled as "taco meat")
    - salt and pepper

    Season the meat liberally with salt and pepper. In a large skillet brown the meat, working in batches if necessary. Set aside on a paper towel to absorb excess fat. 

    Using the same skillet (on medium-low heat) place one corn tortilla topped with a couple slices of cheese and a small pile of the browned meat. Top the meat with another tortilla, press down on it lightly to help it stick. Let the cheese melt slightly before flipping the quesadilla. It should be lightly charred/browned. Once flipped let it sit on the skillet about a minute to fully melt the cheese before removing to a plate.

    Cut the quesadillas in half to serve. 
    Serve warm.


  2. Winter Snow

    Saturday, February 23, 2013

    This winter in Chicago has been seriously lacking in snow. We've only had a few decent sized snowfalls. I read that the average snowfall for a Chicago winter is 89 inches, and this year we've only had about 15 inches so far! Ridiculous. Everywhere else seems to be getting dumped with snow and then the storms go around Chicago and onward. We've only been getting the traditional cold. Not fun. Although I will say that the one thing I don't like about snow is that it is not fun to push a stroller through un-shoveled sidewalk snow.

    We just got about 6 inches of snow from a storm now headed towards the east coast, so I made certain to take some photos of the white wonderland.




  3. Easy Roast Chicken with Accordion Potatoes

    Friday, February 15, 2013


    I didn't follow a recipe for these, I just used my favorite ingredients for roast chicken and roast potatoes. It's a very easy recipe because you put it all together in the oven to cook and all you have to do is wait until it's done.

    Easy Roast Chicken with Accordion Potatoes
    serves 2-4

    - two skin-on chicken leg quarters (thigh and leg attached together)
    - four to five small/medium sized baking potatoes (like Idaho or Russet)
    - one lemon
    - several sprigs fresh rosemary
    - three TB butter
    - olive oil
    - salt and pepper


    To prepare the chicken, season liberally with salt and pepper and place in a foil lined baking dish.
    In between the skin and flesh of the chicken, stick a sprig of rosemary and a slice of lemon.

    To cut the potatoes into accordions, place each potato in between two chopsticks on the cutting board - so that when you slice down you don't go all the way through the potato. (It's harder than you'd think to do without the chopsticks!) Cut the slices about 1/4 inch thick each. 

    Roughly chop up the remaining sprigs of rosemary and place in a microwavable bowl with the butter. Melt the butter with the rosemary in the microwave. Spoon the rosemary-butter into each of the slices of the potatoes. Place the potatoes alongside the chicken in the pan.

    Slice up the rest of the lemon and place the slices in between the potatoes and chicken.
    Roast in the oven at 350 degrees for about 45 mins. or until the chicken and potatoes are done.



  4. I'm not actually going to post this recipe because I didn't change anything about it and I got it from the Smitten Kitchen cookbook.

    In the pictures my hollandaise sauce looks broken because the eggs were too hot for the sauce and caused it to melt. The sauce actually turned out delicious and thick, even though the pictures don't show it. Even after I finished eating the eggs, there was quite a bit of hollandaise left, although it was so good I ate it all myself with pieces of sourdough bread.

    Here's picture of the hollandaise on its own. You can see that it is thick and creamy. Yum.


  5. Home & Style Update

    Wednesday, February 13, 2013

    The paper snowflakes I made before Christmas and hung in the archway between the living and dining room are still there. Mostly because I rather like these snowflakes and I think they are pretty, but also to bring some snow to this winter. We've been having a very cold and snow-less winter this year in Chicago. There has been some snow, but it's all gone now - washed away by rain. For the past two winters there has been a lack of snow in Chicago. I'm not a big cold-lover, I do prefer warmer weather, but I am a strong believer that if it's going to be cold - there should be some snow.

    Ever since I got some finger paints for Aria as a Christmas present, I've been taking them out every once in awhile and letting her paint away. Then I hang up her artwork on the wall. Our walls are rather bare, and this is an easy fix.

     Our tiny little bookshelf is filled with Aria's books that I've picked up at the thrift store. She occasionally picks out a book and wants to read it, but her favorite activity is definitely pulling all the books off the shelf over and over again. She does it so often I just started stacking the books horizontally instead of vertically - it's easier to clean up and easier to pull down.

    This is what I wish the top of the bookshelf could look like on a daily basis, but with a 2-year-old, it only looks like this in photos.

    These are shoes that I've gotten within the past few months at the thrift store. My thrift store often has great shoes, the tricky part is finding shoes that fit though, because you know there's only one pair!

    This first pair of shoes is definitely my favorite pair of heels. They are super comfortable, unique, the heel isn't too high and go with a variety of outfits. After I buy stuff at the thrift store I love searching for them online to find the original cost. I found these for $92 online! I got them for about $7 at the thrift store!

    Of course, oftentimes, the things purchased at thrift stores are no longer in season or stock at most stores so finding them online can be quite a challenge.


  6. TWO

    Friday, February 8, 2013

    12 week ultrasound

    I can't believe it's already been 2 years since my little Aria was born! Time has just gone by so quickly. She's gone from rolling to crawling to walking to running and babbling all sorts of words all the time.
    Although she calls both me and her dad, "dah-dee", she usually is referring to me. We are trying to teach her that I am "mommy" but she seems convinced that we are both "daddy".

    First family portrait at 2 weeks old
    Her new thing to do to get attention is to announce that she's gone to the bathroom by saying "uh-oh, ew, poo-poo." Sometimes she has, and sometimes she just wants out of her carseat.
    She also enjoys shushing us by saying "shhh" and putting her finger to our lips. Another to quiet us is for her to stand in between us with her arms outstretched declaring "NO NO NO NO NO...!" at the top of her lungs until we stop talking. She clearly knows how to demand attention.

    1 year
    While she enjoys watching a number of movies such as Kung Fu Panda, Bolt, Finding Nemo, and The Smurfs; her current all-time favorite is Winnie-the-Pooh. And she wants to watch it like 5 times a day. Always saying "Pooh? Pooh?". She has also started picking up songs from various movies and mixing them together into one song. Mostly it's been the Smurf song and this "song" from Finding Nemo that get blended together.
    Interesting combination, yes?

    2-year-old snow-lovin' child

    Happy Birthday my little Beluga!

  7. Vote for Me!

    Monday, February 4, 2013

    Strawberry-lemon macaroons

    Thyme glazed carrots

     I recently entered Apartment Therapy's "The Homies" contest in several categories.
    Please vote for my blog in Best Recipe, Best Food Photography, and Best Family & Kids Blog, or just one category, but please vote!
    Thank you!

    Lemon and swiss chard pasta

    Homemade pizza with fresh tomatoes and basil