Monday, December 08, 2008

Happy Monday!

We're 1/5th of the way through the week! WooHoo! Today went by SO FAST! I looked at the clock and it was 5:00 already! I hope the rest of the week zooms by in the same fashion!

We had a pretty nice weekend...Justin was on call on Friday night and I was beginning to resemble Medusa -- on a good day -- so I got a haircut! I had been nervous about trying a new salon here in San Antonio but knew I had to get the hurr did (after all, the last time I got it cut was two days before This Pretty Lady's wedding...in APRIL! YIKES!)

Speaking of April, that was the name of my stylist at Smooth Lines Salon. I was pleased to read her fab-o reviews on City Search before I went. She was just as cute as she was a great stylist -- I thought it was a little short at first but I love it! I think I've found my stylist for the next two and a half years!

On Saturday I woke up bright and early -- and COLD! It was 35 degrees out! -- to get to the City Manager's 5K Run/Walk. My work has a strong partnership with the City of San Antonio so a bunch of us volunteered to participate to show our support. I was responsible for coordinating the event and everyone said they wanted to walk. I was hoping to run bc I'm training for a 10K in April, but was looking forward to spending some time with co-workers so I went with the flow. So, I roll up in my jeans and hoody sporting my still cute-ly stlyed 'do from April's handywork the night before and see some work buddies wearing running pants and tennis shoes, stretching and warming up!

Had I gotten the memo, I would have done a wardrobe change before the leaving the casa -- and wouldn't have eaten that second third biscuit. I decided to give it a whirl and ended up running the first mile with a co-worker then let her go ahead and finish...the jeans, hair down and keys, camera and cell phone jingling along in my sweatshirt pouch didn't make for the best running conditions. I walked back to meet up with my co-workers who were walking and finished with them.

After the race, I headed to my favorite vegetable market and stocked up for the first time since Thanksgiving! I came home, unloaded my loot, cleaned the house and waited for a sleepy Justin to get home from a loooong night in the NICU. When he got home, he passed out and I watched football until it was time to get ready for my company Christmas party!

The Christmas party was nice -- downtown at the BEAUTIFUL brand new Grand Hyatt. Food was delicious and I may or may not have paid two trips to the pasta bar. We left around 9:00 after using our two "Free Drink" tickets and headed out downtown with my friend Amanda. We met up with a couple other friends and had a great night!

Sunday was spent laying around for the first half of the morning and cleaning and cooking for the second half! There's something so nice about starting the week with the house clean and all the laundry done -- there would be something even nicer about it all if I had someone to do it for me. We had a YUMMY pork dinner (Good Luck with the recipe tonight, Jess!) and then watched all we could bare of the first half of a disappointing Redskins game. Boo.

I'm hoping the week will go by fast! Justin is off this weekend and we've made plans to go up to Fredericksburg to do some Christmas shopping, wine tasting, sightseeing -- and a little more wine tasting! Have a great week!

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Not Just For Pancakes Anymore!

I found this delicious recipe for Maple Sage Roasted Pork Tenderloin in the November 2008 Cooking Light. I immediately dog-eared the page because I knew I wanted to try it out! I diced up some butternut squash I got on MAYJAH sale at my Farmer's Marketing (Holler at 5lbs for $1!!) and baked them with the pork, roasted some asparagus with garlic and popped an Uncle Ben's in the microwave for 90 seconds and had a DELICIOUS and super healthy meal!

Maple Sage Roasted Pork Tenderloin
Recipe adapted from Cooking Light
Ingredients:
- 1 tblsp maple syrup
- 1 tsp chopped fresh sage (I only had dried...still yum!)
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1 (1-lb) pork tenderloin, trimmed of fat
- Cooking spray

Combine first 5 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag; seal and turn to coat. Marinate in refrigerator 30 minutes.

Bake at 400° for 25 minutes or until a thermometer registers 155°. Cover loosely with foil. Let stand 10 minutes before slicing.

The recipe calls for the pork to be baked on a flat baking sheet covered with foil. Since I cooked the butternut squash along with the pork, I baked mine in a casserole dish. Also, after consulting with my mom, I decided to bake mine at 375° for about 35 minutes. This was definitely the most tender my pork had EVER come out...YUM! SO DELICIOUS!

A close up of the pork...

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Christmas Is All Around Us

If you know that song, then you've seen one of the best Christmas movies. Ever.

We've been spreading the holiday cheer at Casa de Margarita and getting in the Christmas spirit! The weekend after Thanksgiving we trotted off to Wal-Mart and got our tree! We spent the next day putting it together...

And then I spent the next three hours tangled up in a seemingly never-ending strand of lights. What resulted from that monstrosity was this pretty little a lot bigger than it looked in the store tree. Trees look sadder without presents beneath them. Since Justin and I have yet to go Christmas shopping, rather than actually go out and complete said shopping, I told him I was going to wrap up things we already own and put them under the tree -- he thought I was nuts.

Feelin' Hot, Hot, Hot

I haven't always been a big fan of spicy foods. As part of my "training to move to Texas" I began forcing myself to get used to foods that carry a bit o' zing with 'em. I began throwing (verrrrry finely diced!) spicy peppers into my fajitas and enchiladas and adding a couple dashes of red pepper flakes to my pasta dishes. My tastebuds have been learning well and I'm able to tolerate the spiciness in small to medium doses. This dish is considered a wee tad on the "wayyy too spicy for me" side.

On Thanksgiving Day, I wanted to have a snack ready for Justin when he got home after being on call so he wouldn't be rummaging through the fridge and in my way. I had seen a recipe for an easy take on Jalapeno Poppers and I gave it a whirl! They were super easy and he loved them!

Bacon Wrapped Jalapeno Stuffers
6 Jalapenos, cut in half lengthwise, ribs and seeds removed
6 oz. cream cheese, softened
Approx 2-3 Tblsp Mexican Seasoning (such as Old El Paso)
6 Slices Turkey or Regular Bacon, cut in half

In a small bowl, mix together cream cheese and mexican seasoning. Fill each jalapeno half with a small amount cream cheese mixture. Wrap stuffed jalapeno with half slice turkey/regular bacon. Bake @ 350° until jalapeno gets soft and bacon is crisp and browned (about 20 minutes).

You All Know Who You Are...

And this is for you... video

Sorry it's so blurry...and a video. I was trying to take a picture of it really fast while in traffic and had it on Video not Photo. By the time I got it switched, he had PED4LLED away. Hehehe.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Luck Be A Lady...

Who would've thought I would ever have two Guys & Dolls themed posts...certainly not me!

So you all are going to think I am totally weird. You know how they say everyone gets their "15 Minutes of Fame"? Well, I don't want to waste mine. If I'm ever at a big event for work, like a gala or charity function, I steer clear of the television cameras when present. I'm afraid of getting caught on camera or asked for an interview and "wasting" my 15 minutes on something lame. Completely weird, I know. But I want to "save" my 15 Minutes of Fame for something good. What? I'm not quite sure...But I'm hoping I'll eventually come to terms with the fact that I most likely won't be discovered while out dancing at a bar and become a huge singing superstar and have Britney Spears open up for me on my World Tour.

I'm the same way with contests. I don't usually do Lotto Scratch-Offs because I don't want to waste my good luck by winning $1. I don't call in to radio stations because I don't want to win a dumb CD. I'd much rather enter a contest that leads to something big. Again, weird.

Well, I must be getting tired of not ever winning anything because while out to lunch one Sunday afternoon a few weeks ago*, I dropped my business card into a bowl hoping to win a free lunch, and of course forgot all about it. Well wouldn't you know, I received a phone call yesterday and I WON! I am going today to pick up my Gift Certificate for Lunch For Two at Panchito's, a DELICIOUS local Mexican Restaurant! Their portions are HUGE. Our leftovers fed Justin for three days (and anyone who knows him, knows that means they were ENORMOUS portions!)

So maybe I'm getting bold with my luck, but I'm entering another contest!
One of my favorite blogs, Baking Delights, is having a contest and the prize is that big beautiful wrapped up bunch of deliciousness you see! If anyone knows my obsession with ALL things Chocolate (Justin quickly nixxed the idea of going to Hershey, PA for our Honeymoon...sad face!) it's no surprise I couldn't help but enter!

Cross your fingers for me! Maybe I'll bake you something if I win! ;) *We went to lunch with our friends Corey and Rachelle to celebrate Rachelle's AWESOME finish time for the San Antonio Rock & Roll 1/2 Marathon....13.1 miles in1:49:32!! CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT!?!

Monday, December 01, 2008

Happy December!

Holy cow! Is it really December already? Today, December 1st, officially marks 6 months since I have lived in Texas. 6 months down...30 months to go!

I have lots of updates to come later, including the result of all my (and my mom's...via telephone) hard work on Thanksgiving Day!

This weekend was pretty relaxing...it was Justin's first weekend off in quite awhile so we planned to enjoy it! On Friday night we fully anticipated going out and hittin' the town but we couldn't seem to get off the couch! We were in bed by 10pm. Sad.

On Saturday we woke up early and ventured out to get our Christmas tree! After looking at Garden Ridge (holy expensive!) We found an awesome tree at Wal-Mart for a great deal! After a disappointing UVA/VA Tech football game (BOO HOKIES), I made cookies to bring over to our Alabama friends Jake and Kayla's house to watch the Alabama/Auburn football game. ROLL TIDE!! Great game and lots of fun! Again, we had intentions of going out for Karaoke that night but fell asleep on the couch watching the Oklahoma/Oklahoma State football game. Oh well! There's always next weekend!

Yesterday we woke up (not hungover! such a great feeling!), made a big breakfast and started put up our Christmas tree! I also tore out all my holiday decorations and got the apartment all decked out for the holiday season! When we were here in April looking for a place to live, we stopped and had lunch at a DELICIOUS restaurant, Tiago's. I received a Buy One, Get One Free coupon in the mail a few weeks ago and it was set to expire yesterday so we went out for a delicious meal...Mahi Mahi Skewers for him and Chicken and Shrimp Fajitas for me! YUM! All leftovers were sent away with him for lunch/dinner while he is on call tonight...back to eating (somewhat!) healthy for a few weeks before I devour amazing Funky Chickens and Plaza Azteca Chimichangas when I go home for Christmas!

Waking up this morning was rough...after no work Thursday and half days on both Wednesday and Friday, I'm not looking forward to a regular-length week! At least I started the week off with a yummy piece of chocolate from the December 1st window on my Advent Calendar Justin bought me! YAY!

Have a great week everyone! Lots of updates with pictures are on their way later!