Friday, June 29, 2012

off to San Francisco

Tomorrow I leave for San Francisco!  My purpose of the trip is to attend Janice Garrett's dance workshop.  I went in 2008 and it was awesome.  I'm also very excited because it is supposed to be in the 60s all week!  I'm ready for some dancing and a break from the 100 degree heat!


Above:  Heidi Schweiker, performing in a work by Janice Garrett.
Below:  Tartine, a bakery my friend told me to try.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

beckanne

This is Beckanne Sisk of Ballet West.
Amazing photo, huh?  


You can see her dance on the new show Breaking Pointe.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

staying strong

Today was day 6 of our sugar free week.  It has been very difficult for me.  I love having some tasty chocolate (or a tasty cupcake) after dinner.  Interestingly, Austin has lost 8 pounds so far and I've lost... none.  Yep, not a pound.  I have no clue why because I've also counted calories, out of curiosity, and it all adds up to significantly less calories than usual (in addition to no bad sugars).  We'll see... maybe I'll lose a pound by the end of tomorrow?!

I don't believe this is going to be a permanent diet.  It is too... unfun.  It has definitely made me aware of all of the added sugars I consume in a single day.  I'll keep my "no sugar shelf" and a lower "sugar shelf" in the pantry and fridge to keep track of the things I'm eating that have added sweeteners.

I made this macaroni and cheese recipe on Thursday.  It is pretty good!  Just use the sharpest, tangiest cheddar you can find :)



1.  Boil water in a large pot and then boil 5 ounces of macaroni noodles until tender.
2.  Strain and return macaroni to the pot.
3.  While macaroni is cooking: In a smaller saucepan, mix 1 cup milk, 2 tablespoons flour, and 2 tablespoons butter.  Blend until completely melted.
4.  To this smaller pot, add 1/3 cup cream, 1/2 teaspoon mustard powder, 1/2 tsp salt (I used more), 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and cayenne to taste.
5.  Add 4 ounces grated extra sharp cheddar cheese gradually until completely melted and smooth.  Let simmer until thick.
6.  Add sauce to macaroni and eat up!

Monday, June 18, 2012

sugar free

Inspired by our friends Erin & Michael, Austin and I decided to go completely sugar-free this week.  I don't simply mean I'm cutting dessert out after dinner... I mean everything with a single gram of sugar is cut.  SO many of our everyday foods have a good amount of sugar in them:
bread
cereal
pre-packaged turkey
wheat thins
yogurt
juice
dried fruits
peanut butter
jelly
cereal bars
granola
and of course all of my favorite treats like chocolate!
So we are on a quest this week to see what it is like to not eat any of these things.  We had to stock up on fruits and veggies at the grocery store (we aren't counting naturally occurring sugars - that would be ridiculous).  

Day 1 started out not too shabby with some sugarless homemade biscuits and blueberries.  As the day went on it got more difficult.  It is 8pm now and I'm dying to have a cookie or piece of chocolate!  I'm going to make it though... at least through Sunday!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

let's eat...

Other than working 40 hours a week, I've been having a pretty fun summer!
I realized by typing this post that majority of our fun-havings have involved food.  I need to find other fun things to do besides eat!  Eating good food with good friends is just so fun...

We went to Joe T. Garcia's in Fort Worth with our friends Will & Liz.
Tasty food and beautiful, expansive gardens!
We also discovered j.rae's cupcakes.  I have heightened cupcake sensors...

After dinner we made margaritas... 
with super long straws for some reason :) 

We've been to the pool many times already this summer!
It's nice to have 2 different pools in the neighborhood.  
Sometimes we have the pool to ourselves!
Wednesday, Austin and I met up with Erin & her mom & baby.
We tried the burgers and milkshakes at Mr. Frosty's in Denton.  Yum!

My parents went to Italy... awesome, I know!  
They flew in and out of Dallas so when they returned yesterday, 
we ate lunch at Fuzzy's Taco Shop in Denton.  This was funny (read the bottle)...

I also made german chocolate cupcakes for my dad for Father's Day.  
They turned out delicious, even though I can never make them look pretty :)
INGREDIENTS:
Cake...
1 box devil's food cake mix
3 eggs
1/2 cup oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup buttermilk
1 cup sour cream
German Chocolate Frosting...
1 cup evaporated milk
1 cup sugar
3 egg yolks, lightly beaten
1/2 cup butter
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cup chopped pecans (I omitted)
1 1/2 cup flaky coconut
Chocolate Buttercream Frosting... (best ever)
4 oz. cream cheese
1/2 cup butter
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
3 cups powdered sugar (I used less)
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp milk or cream (I used around 3 tbsp of heavy whipping cream)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line 2 muffin tins with cupcake liners (I made 20).
In a large bowl, combine oil, eggs, and vanilla.
Sift in 1/3 of the cake mix until combined.
Add buttermilk, then another 1/3 of the sifted cake mix.
Add sour cream, then the remaining sifted cake mix.
Fill cupcakes liners 3/4 full and bake 18-22 minutes. (Mine took 18.)
For german chocolate frosting:
In a sauce pan stir evaporated milk, sugar, egg yolks, and butter over medium heat until thick.
This takes around 15 minutes.  Stir constantly so sugar doesn't caramelize.
Stir in vanilla and coconut (and pecans, if used).  Let cool.
For chocolate buttercream frosting:
Beat together cream cheese and butter for 4 minutes until smooth.
Add cocoa, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract.  Beat 3 minutes.
It will probably be too thick, so add as much cream (or milk) as necessary.
When cupcakes are finished and cooled, pipe buttercream frosting around edges.
Fill center with german chocolate frosting, and top with a pecan!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

what do you think?

Here are 2 cartoons from the Dance, Gender, Culture classes I'm assisting this summer.  
Interesting and funny!



Sunday, June 10, 2012

wonderful song

I listen to this song over and over.  
In the car, before bed, doing chores.  It's wonderful! 

Saturday, June 9, 2012

baby epidemic

My baby fever has been upgraded to a baby epidemic.  This is serious.
I got this catalog in the mail on Tuesday:
I never requested it!  I took it as a sign... :)

Last night, after Austin and I had a date night consisting of Fuddrucker's and a Mario Kart tournament, we compiled a huge list of baby names and we discussed them all.  We now have our #1 boy and girl names in place, though I probably have a good 50 of each in case we change our minds (since we won't be having a baby for at least 2 years...).  Austin thinks I'm being a little over-the-top with my baby epidemic. But I think if he is willing to have hours of conversation over baby names, he probably has a little baby fever himself.  Just sayin'.  

Friday, June 1, 2012

june is bustin' out all over

Welcome to June.  
I say WOW every time I turn the calendar to a new month, so this time I'll change it up:
SHEESH!

I'm so excited that Austin's school year in Oklahoma City is finished.  He has to do a few days of professional development next week but then he'll be home with me and the pets for a month and a half before he goes back for the new school year.

I made these soft chocolate chip cookies this past week - absolutely delicious.
I've been testing out all of the basic chocolate chip cookie recipes I can find... let me know if you have any interesting ones!  


Monday I begin my graduate assistantship for the dance department.  I'm assisting with two Dance, Gender, Culture courses and I'm pretty stoked about it.  Wish me luck!

Weekend plans: swimming and relaxing.  I literally have nothing on my to-do list (ok, besides finishing the dishes here in a sec) and Austin is bringing his brother to stay for the weekend.  Family time is good time even if it is spent just sitting around and talking.



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