Wednesday, October 22, 2014

What's For Dinner

Teriyaki chicken and broccoli with white rice. This is my go to when we order Chinese food so I decided to give it a go. We eat brown rice more frequently than white rice. But some dishes are just plain better with white.  This is one of them. It turned out pretty tasty so I'll add it to the dinner line up.

¡Pura Vida!


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

What's For Dinner

Chicken meatloaf, sweet potato casserole and asparagus spears. You can find the recipe for the chicken meatloaf here. It's actually a turkey meatloaf recipe. I loosely followed it because I didn't have all of the ingredients, namely the tomato sauce. I made a sauce using barbecue sauce as my base and added some of it to the chicken mixture before placing it in the oven. I also used breadcrumbs in lieu of saltine crackers. I have to say it was deliciously moist.

¡Pura Vida!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Home Diaries: Fireplace Project

Earlier this year I did some work on our fireplace. It's in our living room/dining room, the room we are currently getting updated. While we were demolishing the family room (which I haven't shown here yet), I was working on the fireplace because we thought we would do the cosmetic changes in that room at the same time. We decided against that and voted to do one room at a time, but I still worked on the fireplace since I had already started that project.

We have a brick fireplace that had been painted. I love exposed brick so I thought it a travesty that it was painted, and wanted to strip it down. As Nicole Curtis says...I want brick! Here's what it looked like in the beginning...

I started with a run of the mill paint stripper but the fumes were ridiculous. I wore a mask while doing the work, but the smell still lingered for a while so I had to let that go. An exposed brick fireplace is not worth the health risk. This is as far as I got...

I did some research on line and found Smart Strip. It's an eco-friendly paint remover and the smell is very faint. It smells kind of like play dough and you have to be right up on it to smell it. Best of all, no fumes. It has to sit a very long time (overnight or longer depending on the job) and several coats are needed, making for a very labor intensive process. Well, stripping paint off of brick is tedious anyway because its a porous surface. So this project took quite a while. Here are a few progress shots...

I wanted the brick to be completely exposed whereas Hubby wanted the whitewashed effect. I stopped somewhere in the middle to make each of us somewhat happy. And quite honestly, I couldn't muster up the patience to do one more round of Smart Strip and many hours of time. I even had a couple friends come over and help me a few times. I was done. So here's what we have now. Not perfect, but it'll do...

Looking forward to seeing how it looks in the finished room.

¡Pura Vida!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Date Night Discovery

Friday night Hubby and I went out for dinner and a movie since it was a year to the day he proposed. We shared a ginger salad followed by pad thai and sushi. Scrumptious and expensive. We are trying to make eating out a rare occurrence until we get through debt payments. And even when we do, it needs to be modestly priced. This meal was a deviation from that.

After dinner we went to see The Equalizer. Denzel Washington....
Why is he such a great actor? He is so believable in every role. Anyway, we thoroughly enjoyed the movie.

After the movie we took a stroll to a dessert bar where we usually share our favorite on their menu ..a chocolate cupcake. This time we decided to try something new - a s'mores eclair. All I have to say is, it's our new favorite. It doesn't look too hot because we had already cut into it but absolutely delicious. 

We usually split our desserts so that we have the treat but not too much of it. This time when I was through with my half, I found myself wishing there was another half to grab. It wasn't too sweet and very light. I see many s'mores eclairs in our future...and we won't be sharing one.  :-) 

¡Pura Vida!

Friday, October 17, 2014

It Is Time

...for a new pair of running shoes. I'm having some discomfort in my left knee toward the end of my runs and that is an indication that my running shoes have "run" their course.  :-)  So witty, I know.  LOL.

But guess what, running shoes cost $100+. Of course you can find them on sale, but I go to the running store and get fitted for shoes. It is the only way for me. Once I am in the store running on the treadmill with my potential kicks, and then take them around the block to make sure they are the ones, I am not about to leave the store without them just so I can search on line to find the same shoe at a cheaper price and wait a few more days for them to arrive in the mail. In this situation, I like the instant gratification of walking out of the store with my new shoes and I can go running in them the very same day.

So for running shoes, I sacrifice any potential discounts for convenience. If you're looking for me this weekend, I will be in my running store getting fitted. Not the entire weekend, LOL, but you know...

¡Pura Vida!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

I'm Not Conceited

However!  While running, if I pass any reflective surface...well any full body reflective surface, bet your bottom dollar, I'm gonna check myself out.

Now I'm not looking at my hair or how good I look in my running gear that day; I am checking out my form. Form is probably the most important thing for a runner.  Bad form can completely drain your energy or even cause injury.  So as I run past a store front, I check my form to ensure I'm not leaning forward, my feet are under me and my shoulders and arms are not tense.

While onlookers think I must be some kind of conceited, oh contraire mon frère.  I'm making sure that stride is right! ;-)

¡Pura Vida!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

It's Official, We Are Crazy

Perhaps a lot of impatience mixed with a little crazy...

Our contractor came over on Saturday morning to chit chat about revamping our living room/dining room space. There's not a ton to be done and really, if the fella and I were into taking on a project or a little more handy, we could tackle it ourselves. Eventually we will have to learn and start doing projects on our own because we'd like to dive into real estate one day. But for right now, we have a great contractor we trust with these small projects.

Long story short, we've signed on to revamp another room and the hallway. Basically we need to touch up the wood floors, smooth the walls, paint the room, redo some trim, add shoe molding...etc. Really it's just a little clean up to bring them up to speed with the room we've already done.

Now the crazy part is that I recently posted our updated financial goals in which we are aiming to be debt free as a couple (except the house). Quite obviously this house work is counter productive. But we want it done and just really don't feel like waiting.  Well the impatience is more me, than hubby. So we'll do both simultaneously. Not the usual Ms. S mode of operation, but hey. :-)

The work started yesterday and it should take about 3 weeks. Here's what the room looks like before. Not bad, just a little bland for my taste.   

No hallway pictures unfortunately.  Forgot that one.

More pics to come through the process.

¡Pura Vida!