Thursday, April 29, 2010

Your comments make my day! But who are you?

Just wanted to say THANKS for those of you that leave me comments on my posts. Seeing a new comment notification in my email while I'm at work gives me a little thrill. I always try take the time to read each one and respond to it because I love when other bloggers do the same for me.

However, some of you have that nasty "" that shows up! I try to go searching to find an email address for you, but a lot of times I fail miserably. There's an EASY fix!

1. Go to your Blogger dashboard.

2. Under your profile picture, click on Edit Profile.

3. Under Privacy, there is an option called Show my email address. Check that box.

4. Scroll down to the Identity section where it says Email address. Enter the email address you would like to receive comment responses at. This does not change the email you use to sign in to Blogger with.

5. Click SAVE PROFILE at the bottom.

Done! See how easy that was?

Linking up to:
The Girl Creative: New Friend Friday
Stop by and meet some new friends!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Yummy Turkey Stromboli

Don't mind if I take a bite while I write this...

It may not look that pretty in the pics, but it tasted great! And that's why I had to share this recipe with you...(Adapted from here)

• non-stick cooking spray
• 1/2 c chopped artichokes (canned or in a jar is fine)
• 2 cloves garlic
• 1 lb lean ground turkey (we use the Jenny-O extra lean)
• salt & pepper
• 8 oz. can tomato sauce
• 1 t basil
• 1/2 t oregano
• package of frozen pizza dough (don't forget to thaw beforehand!)
• 6-8 oz. shredded mozzarella cheese
• olive oil

Preheat over to 425.

Heat a large skillet over medium heat and spray with non-stick cooking spray. Pour in the turkey, onion, garlic, and artichokes and cook until brown. Sprinkle some salt and pepper and cook for a few more minutes.

While the turkey is cooking, pull out the pizza dough (make sure it's thawed).

Sprinkle some flour on the counter and use a rolling pin to roll out the dough. Separate the dough into 4 equal pieces.

The turkey is still cooking, right? Add in the tomato sauce, basil and oregano. Lower heat to low and let simmer while you continue with the dough.

Back to the dough...
Roll each of the 4 pieces into rectangles. Cover a cookie sheet with foil and spray with non-stick cooking spray. Lay down each piece of dough and then pour turkey mixture on each piece. Top with shredded cheese.

Fold the edges to enclose the turkey and cheese. Use a knife to make a couple of slits at the top.

Brush olive oil across the top of each piece.

Bake for 20 minutes. Once they come out of the oven, I recommend topping them with some warm marinara sauce for a yummy dipping sauce.

Linking up to:
House of Hepworths

Friday, April 23, 2010

Balance - How do you manage?

How do you find a balance between life and work?
Since I started graduated college almost 6 (wow, has it been that long?) years ago, I've had 3 jobs. I struggled with trying not to get too bored each day and feeling like I had an impact on the work that was being done. I used to wish that I could have more responsibility and that people would rely on me to help them get things done. I worked my 8 hours a day and didn't think twice about it.
As we all know, the recession has made everyone's job very difficult. You can't be picky about your job IF you have a job. And you're probably overloaded because some of your coworkers got laid off.
In December, my job changed as I was put in charge of something new in our department. All of a sudden I had to take on a leadership role (without extra pay or a promotion) doing something no one has any clue about. I've really struggled with how to pull this off when most of my coworkers hated the idea and constantly complained to me about it. I was trying to juggle my normal work along with this new job and it was becoming very overwhelming.

There are days when I cry as soon as I sit down in my car to drive home at night. Some days I come home with panic attacks and wonder how I can handle everything. I constantly dream about work and have a recurring nightmare where the pile of folders on my desk keeps getting higher and higher. I don't feel like I can take a day off of work because there is no one to cover for me and I know I'll come back to a huge mess. I get so burnt out and stressed that I don't know how to relax anymore.
I talked to another coworker who is struggling with the same thing and she reminded me how life is not about working. There are more important things than work and we have to remind ourselves of that. But it's really hard to leave work when you have a stack of work on your desk that HAS to get done by tomorrow.

So how do you find a balance between life and work when you have too many responsibilities?

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

8-year quilting project: COMPLETED

During my school breaks in college, I taught myself to make quilts. I made about 4 of them before I graduated and gave them to my parents to use. Here's a couple of old pics I found...
A couple months ago, my mom was cleaning out my craft stash at her house and found a half-finished quilt that I started back in 2002! I have SO many crafts that I started and never finished because I messed up or got bored. When I see them sitting around, I feel guilty for never finishing them.

This quilt was SO close to being done so I finally spent one icky Sunday completing it.

I can't say that it's very pretty or impressive, and I'll probably never use it. But I like that I was able to finished a craft that I started 8 years ago.

Do you have any unfinished projects that you really want to complete?

Linking up to:
Show & Share Day
Someday Crafts
Sew Much Ado: Wednesday Linky Party
Today's Creative Blog: Get Your Craft On

Monday, April 19, 2010

A little spring cleaning...

While I waited for the patched wall in the bathroom to dry last week, I had some time to do some spring cleaning.

You may have noticed that I added a few things on my blog. It's funny how most graphic designers are great at web design and html, but I suck at it. I never took a class in web design in college because I wanted to focus on print design. Kinda regret this decision now, but thanks to my friend, Google, and some great tutorials, I was able to figure this out pretty easily.

See above?
The magenta buttons below the heading are compilations of all my recipes and crafts I've shown on here.

See below each post?
I added a LinkWithin. I love this features on some of the blogs I visit, so why not add it to mine?

And another area that got some major spring cleaning was our walk-in closet. While I'd love to buy new clothing dividers and shelves for this area, what we have now works pretty well. I just have a LOT of clothes and they get messy when I start pulling things down to try them on.

Long sleeves & short sleeves on the top
Capris, dress pants, jeans, shorts, and skirts on the bottom

Purses and bags in yellow crates on the top shelf

Ok, I have a LOT of sweaters...but I promise some of them are almost 10 years old! These get so messed up when I start pulling them down, so I refolded everything and organized by sleeve length and thickness.

Boots, gym shoes, heels, and the crate in the corner for dry cleaning

This area has recently become fun again now that it's warm. Flats, sandals and flip-flops galore!

And speaking of spring cleaning, I wanted to show you the awesome giveaway I won recently from In My Own Style. It was my first visit to the blog and I randomly won these fun cleaning gloves and pretty turquoise earrings! Thanks Diane!

Have you done any spring cleaning in the past few weeks?

Friday, April 16, 2010

What makes a runner?

This is something that I haven't talked about very often on here, but it's a big part of my life.
I'm kinda obsessed with working out.

I was never very athletic growing up and would do everything I could to get out of gym class in school. I barely passed the mile run and hated it with a passion. I was a dancer and always went by the excuse that dancers are NOT runners and don't ever want to be.

One time in college, my roommate begged me to go running with her. I always said no, but one day I gave in and tried it...I swear to you, I fell into a bush from exhaustion after ONE block!

I've been working out more routinely for the past 6 years, but didn't get hard-core until the last few years. I started to become unhappy with my body and bumped up my workout days to 4 or 5x a week. It took a few months, but I saw results! I finally had muscle on my body for the first time! I could tell that my endurance was improving and I was feeling more exhilarated from a good workout.

So just in the past couple of months, I've started to focus a lot on running. As I said, I was never a runner. But one day, I had this sudden burst of energy and ran my fastest mile yet. And then I beat my time again...and again...and again! The more I beat my best time, the more motivated I am to keep going!

Last week I ran the longest I have ever run without stopping and I had to hold back the tears when I finished. I could not believe how far I've come since I fell in the bush in college!

So to celebrate, I went out and got some MUCH-NEEDED running shoes! It took me 3 attempts to find some I liked, but these are great!

And I also couldn't pass up a great bargain on a Nike shirt. I decided that I'm finally enough of a runner to deserve a real working out shirt instead of the "wife-beaters" I usually wear.

So what really makes a runner? Just because you don't have the best time or aren't very athletic, can you be a real runner? Can someone who once couldn't even run 1 block be considering a runner now? I'd love your input and comments.

Linking up to:
The Girl Creative

Friday Follow at One2Try

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

It's my birthday! The big 2-8

Today I am officially out of my mid-twenties and into the late twenties. Yes, that's right, I'm 28 today and it sounds a little scary!

Birthday have always been a huge thing for me ever since I was little. My parents always made a big deal and I looked forward to planning my birthday party for months. And are you even surprised that at all my birthday parties we did some type of craft? I always thought it was so cool to do a craft project at my parties instead of the usual cake, ice cream, and chatter. I also hated birthday cake so my dad would go out and buy me a chocolate chip coffee cake decorated with my favorite obsession from that year like Snoopy or Kermit.

That's why it's kind of hard for me to be an adult and have a birthday...I feel like some of the excitement is gone. Since my birthday is on a Wednesday, I can't take off work in the middle of the week. So I'm stuck working today, but I'm off Friday so I can have a birthday celebration weekend!
(Or cake works too...)

So while I know my birthday isn't what it was when I was 5, I'm going to make the best of it. I have plans for all 3 days to see family & friends and I'm really looking forward to it!

Monday, April 12, 2010

BBQ Pulled Chicken Sandwiches

Another attempt at the crock pot came out great!

These BBQ pulled chicken sandwiches were really good and very easy to make.

  • 1-2 lb of boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 18 oz. bottle of BBQ sauce (we used Sweet Baby Rays)
  • 1 medium sweet onion, diced
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/2 tpepper
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • hamburger buns
  • optional: slices of cheese
Spray crock pot with non-stick cooking spray.

Remove fat from chicken breasts and put in pot.

Pour diced onion, minced garlic, salt, pepper, and brown sugar over chicken.

Pour BBQ sauce over chicken

Cook on LOW for 8 hours.
If you're home, give the chicken a stir every couple of hours to keep from burning.

About 30-45 minutes before the chicken is ready, shred the chicken.
I think it's easiest to use two forks and pull the chicken apart.

After cooking for 8 hours, give the chicken a final mix and place on buns.
Add a slice of cheese to the top if you'd like.

Yum! And great leftover as well!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Showing off my bargains!

I think it's about time to share some bargains I've found recently.
(And it's hard not to brag when they're THIS good!)

H&M turtleneck sweater
I paid: $2.00

Star of David napkin rings
I bought 3 packs of 4 rings (perfect for future holiday dinners at our house)
I found a sterling silver set online for $185! Crazy!
I paid: $2.00

Zara ruffled blouse
I paid: $2.50

Textured brown socks
I paid: $.66

Old Navy cropped cardian
I paid: $2.50

Tell me about your recent bargains!

Linking up to...
The Girl Creative
The Girl Creative: New Friend Friday

Friday Follow on One 2 Try
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