I feel like a lucky, lucky girl – I’m getting a husband and he cooks!
I went to my usual weight lifting class at the gym today, and came home on the late side to find Matt wearing a Duke apron. He mentioned that he’d get something ready for dinner tonight, but I didn’t expect him to make anything fancy. There was wine!
I knew it was gonna be good when I smelled fresh basil.
Matt made jalapeno-basil pork chops. The sauce was sweet and spicy and amazing!!!! Apparently, the secret is red pepper jelly. Seriously, the.best.sauce. The pork was also super tender. And brussels are one my favorite vegetables, so I always enjoy a big pile of ‘em roasted, especially when I don’t have to do the roasting!
You bet I’m going to bed happy tonight. That’s all folks.Read More
I feel like I’m in this peaceful period – the calm before the storm. This winter has been relatively slow in terms of plans and events, and while I know things are about to be super busy, I’ve just been enjoying going to work, slowly making my way through the giant to-do list that is the wedding, and taking pleasure in the slow pace of the cold season. Here’s what I’ve been loving lately:
- I’ve been trying to work out in the mornings 2 or so days a week, so that I can better utilize my time in the evening. I really can’t even describe how wonderful it feels to get home from work and not have to think about going anywhere. I’ve always hated evening workouts, and I’m especially appreciating getting cozy at night during the winter. A few years ago, I would have been bored at home or craving happy hour, but these days, there’s nothing better than being warm on the couch with free time. The best nights involve Downton Abby (I’m stuck now btw because Netflix doesn’t have season 2) or a movie.
- Caitlin’s cornbread quiche. I love that this is easy, delicious, produces leftovers, and can be made with essentially any toppings. I keep coming back to it over and over again.
- Wedding planning, while quite stressful and sometimes annoying, is so fun. For the most part, I’ve really enjoyed the process and I’m starting to realize that I’m a very visual person. I love just looking. The flowers, colors, patterns, paper, dresses, shoes are all so darn beautiful these days, that wedding browsing has become my favorite way to waste time. Even though I’ve already planned so many of the details, I still want to look!
- Date night. There’s just nothing quite like a good one-on-one date (I would be terrible on The Bachelor). It’s no secret that I’m obsessed with going out to dinner, but one of the reasons I love it so much is because it allows for quality time without all the distractions of work, school, or life. Matt and I had great conversation just sitting at the bar on Friday night, and it felt so refreshing after a long week.
- Wine. Every year, after I’ve had every imaginable chocolate porter, coffee stout, pumpkin ale, and winter barley wine during the holidays, I start to crave a little break from beer. And then I have a glass of juicy red wine and remember that I adore wine too! My love for beer just sometimes overpowers it and I have to go on a wine kick to rekindle the flame.
What’s something simple that you’re loving about life?Read More
Ahh, friends, this weekend was peaceful.
And I just got back from seeing Les Miserables. Matt and I took sandwiches and had a Monday night dinner date. The movie is SO.GOOD and very beautiful.
After the holidays, I really needed a Friday night in, so that’s what I did – a delicious cabernet from the Wall Street Journal annual selection (a gift from Matt’s parents!) was opened. Matt and I accidentally drank the whole bottle because we liked it that much:)
To go with the wine, I baked The Meat House spicy marinated chicken that I picked up back in November. Served with lemongrass rice, it was awesome! There were lots of leftovers that made for great salads and quesadillas.
How cute is this pancake bar Matt set up Saturday morning? We had tickets to the Duke-Wake basketball match, so we had a late breakfast before the noon game.
Enter weekly pizza craving on Saturday night: a soft egg, mushroom, bacon, and arugula pizza from the tasty Pizzeria Toro down the street.
And on Sunday, we registered for our wedding! I thought picking out things in the store [Macys] was was kind of overwhelming. But, once I got to my couch and could take my time looking over things online, it was really fun. I’m excited, but I also feel a little weird just picking out so many nice things for someone else to buy. It reminded me that time is moving so fast – less than five months to go!
Hope yall had a good weekend as well:)Read More
I’ve learned to make a copy of my posts to prevent Ecto from eating them…unless it’s late at night and I’m tired and I forget. And it’s always those nights that posts are consumed:( So, I apologize for last night’s post.
So today I had another holiday party! This time, instead of psychologists, it was the exceptional students staff at one of my schools. And this party had adult beverages:) We went to a local bar and they had half off glasses of wine! Plus, I had a really incredible fried green tomato, pimento cheese, and arugula sandwich…for $2.95!!!! I rarely take advantage of happy hour food specials, but this was a total steal and a delicious dinner with a fun crowd.
I walked straight from the restaurant to the hair salon for a Christmas cut. Matt walked me home and I kept him company while he had dinner.
Couch time is planned for the next hour. It’s sooo fun having this guy home at night to just hang out!
I’m officially counting down until Friday. I’m so excited to sleep, and eat, and be with family, and relax, and sleep.Read More
What a wonderful birthday it was! I felt like such a lucky girl all day long on Thursday! I actually had a crazy day at work with meetings and dealing with a suspension, so the day flew by. After work, I took myself on a jog and then showered for a night of celebrating. My parents came over, and we opened a Sangiovese from the NY Times Wine list (best present ever from Matt’s parents ~ 2 years ago).
The wine was fabulous and a perfect precursor to a tapas dinner.
It started to rain, but we headed to dinner on foot, with umbrellas in hand. Dinner was at Mateo, a new tapas restaurant in Durham that friends have been raving about. The restaurant is in one of the old brick buildings downtown, and for such a small city, the interior felt very cosmopolitan.
Well, Mateo lived up to the hype!! The food was unique and oh-so-flavorful. The four of us shared everything, and I think we loved every dish:
grilled bread with three dips: romesco, green pea/manchengo, and olive,
pork ribs with espellette pepper jelly,
meatballs and chorizo, in local field pea stew,
blood sausage with creamy potato, apple, and hazelnuts,
fideuá with chorizo, clams, calamares, and butter beans ,
fried catfish with piquillo tartare sauce and lemon,
shrimp with olive oil, garlic, chili, lemon, and parsley,
chicken skewer: moorish spices, orange, pine nuts, and salsa verde (my favorite!),
and manila clams with sherry, garlic, boiled peanuts, and ham.
You guys, it was pure heaven! The only thing in the world that could be better than this dinner is the perfect birthday cake!!
And perfect it was. I requested carrot cake this year and it was the best decision ever. This guy was stuffed with cream cheese icing, but still had buttercream on the outer layer. I am really in love with this bakery!
The cake part was so moist, it nearly melted. I had three pieces, and with the help of the others, we made it through half the cake:
It was The Greatest Day! Of course, Matt and I continued the celebration this weekend, but since I’ve already dumped a million pictures on you, I’ll save that for tomorrow:)
Hope you guys enjoyed the fall weekend!Read More