Goals Update: Week 15

Expensive Sandwich

Let’s see how well I did with this week …

1. Loose some weight: 158

2. Exercise:  Total Biked: 199.5 miles

3. Eat more whole foods: Total fail this week. We have eaten out most nights

4. Pay off some debt: 86.2%

5. Finish 6 quilts: Had to re-align some hexagons so I am still at 3/4% finished with the top of one quilt

6. Host 4 dinner parties: 2/4 … third one tonight

7. Try 12 new recipes: 6/12

8. Read 12 non-fiction books: 3/12… halfway through another

9. Write at least 100 words a day on my maybe novel… that would be at least 36,500 by the end of the year: 8.24% to 36,500 words… I have not wanted on this at all something about not being inspired… maybe it is writers block

10. Go to Ireland… again: are we planning on this? England instead maybe?

11. Try 12 new wines: 7/12

12. Learn some basic phrases in German: too busy this week… I really need to work on this

13. Go to Saint Augustine or New York City: not yet

14. Switch banks: not yet

15. Participate in 6 WDC review raids: 2/6

16. Find a new place to live and move: talking about it

17. Attend couples cooking class: not yet

18. Join a meet-up group: Already complete

19. See 6 movies in movie theaters: 2/6

20. Visit 3 new wineries: not yet

21. Get rid of 100 things: I have thrown out quite a bit and given away about 35% of my goal

22. Make cleaning schedule and stick to it: working on it… I don’t think it is a schedule until I follow it for a few weeks

23. Yoga!: not really with all of the pain in my hand

24. Stay on budget: not too bad this week

25. Take vitamins on regular basis: fail…

26. Date night out at least once a month preferably somewhere new: 5/12

37 more weeks to go.

~Emme

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March 2012 – Grocery Staples

Mission: Apollo Hike 2010

What did we end up using the most of this month with our at home cooking?

  • Chicken
  • Chard
  • Bananas
  • Rice
  • Popcorn
I am so excited for more varieties of local fruit and vegetables to come out… hopefully next month has more of a variety.
What did you eat the most of this month?

~Emme

How Not To Use a Grocery List

Grocery shopping? I’m game! Here’s how I did this week:

What was on the list? (That I did not remember to take off my desk)

  • Dish Soap
  • Sandwich Bags
  • Hand Soap
  • Chicken
  • Cake Mix
  • Frosting
  • Jelly Beans
  • Bananas (Am I the only person that has to have Gwen Stefani’s Holla-Back Girl play in my head after writing/saying/thinking/eating bananas?)
  • Crescent Rolls Pepperoni

What did I come home with?

  • Sandwich Bags
  • Cake Mix
  • Frosting
  • Air-freshener (ours is about to die)
  • Yogurt (it was on sale)
  • Pepperoni
  • Crescent Rolls
  • Eggs (for the cake mix)
  • Bananas
  • Dish Soap
I totally forgot to buy thyme and q-tips (not to be used at the same time) and will go back today and grab them… as they are essential.

What was thrown out this week:

  • Left over rice that grew some red fuzzy stuff overnight… weird…
  • Frozen carrots that freezer burned
  • Frozen kale that had freezer burned

What did you throw out this week?

~Emme

What’s local to me in April?

What is local by you right now?

I had no idea, so I asked the internet what is local to my state and what should be freshest this month.

  • Arugula
  • Asparagus
  • Chard
  • Cherries
  • Collard Greens
  • Fennel
  • Garlic Scapes (Can I find them this year?)
  • Greens Green
  • Onions
  • Kale
  • Morels
  • Wild Mushrooms
  • Nettles
  • New Potatoes
  • Pea Greens (What is a pea green?)
  • Radishes
  • Scallions
  • Strawberries

We do have quite a bit that are year-round foods. My assumption is that this is due to storage of root vegetables/pods and greenhouses.

  • Beets
  • Carrots
  • Garlic
  • Herbs
  • Leeks
  • Lettuce
  • Onions
  • Potatoes
  • Shallots
  • Sorrel
  • Spinach (We like to buy it frozen as we use it mostly in smoothies or soups)
  • Sweet Potatoes

I’m going to see if I can find out what those unknown items are and see about learning how to use them. Do you have any suggestions or ideas?

~Emme

Product Review: Fetzer Wines’ Riesling

For some reason I keep trying Fetzer wines. The one and only reason is their Gewürztraminer. I do not usually like sweet and fruity wines, but that wine is fabulous… it is happiness in a glass.

In the past I have tried Fetzer’s Cab-Sauv and it was an unpleasant experience for Mr. Wonderful and I as well as our guests.

This Riesling, although, not a red was much the same experience for me; although, there were no guests at my party and Mr. Wonderful would not even try it. Yes, it was (admittingly) just me sitting down to watch Hot in Cleveland.

I expected to like it… but I did not. I do not recommend this wine to you… even though Fetzer’s Gewürztraminer is incredible and they are an organic vineyard.

Emme

What are Pea Greens?

Do you grow peas in your garden? Do you have a garden? Do you not live on the first story of an apartment building and lack the ability to grow plants in thin air?

The last one is me.

Pea greens are either the shoots of new pea plants or the leafy goodness from adult plants depending on who you ask. My lack of ability to grow plants prevents me from harvesting them myself. Their lack of availability at my grocery story is impending my ability to have them. Legend has it they taste lightly of peas… If you eat your pea greens it will diminish the amount of peas that you will get from the crop. You can; however, eat the leaves, flowers, peas and pods from this plant. It could be the way to go if you have spot for a plant you would be willing to eat all of.

As there are many varieties of peas I have no pictures to provide. If you have a pea plant… it looks like those pea shoots or pea greens. Eat them… enjoy… and let me know how they are.

~Emme

Product Review: Art of Tea’s Tali’s Masala Chai

“Each cup of tea represents an imaginary voyage.”

– Catherine Douzel

I drink tea… a lot of tea. With Mr. Wonderful’s gift of a personal Keurig for my office I drink probably more tea than I should. This tea was ordered from Art of Tea, Chai’s are a tea that I am not overly familiar with so I was more than willing to give it a go!

Tali’s Masala Chai is fair trade certified. While this does nothing substantial in the flavor of the tea, it does tell you that the quality and standards of life of those that grow and harvest this tea are greater than those who earn below living wage for what they produce. This is neither the time or the place for standing on a soap box… so I will not digress further at this time into the definition of fair trade. There are wonderful explanations on the Art of Tea website and you are more than welcome to go view the videos and learn about what they are doing to ensure a higher quality product.

Please also note that my Keurig is not the recommended way to brew this tea. While it might be the easiest way for me to enjoy tea throughout the day… they recommend steeping 1 teaspoon for 3-5 minutes in 206 degree water. The fill line on my eco-cup is about 2 1/2 teaspoons and I get the best flavor from my 1st through 4th cup. And yes… I do brew the same leaves all day at I believe is 165 degrees, but I have no setting control for the temperature. Tali’s Masala Chai is a loose tea. You can order empty teabags from Art of Tea or from Amazon or go to the grocery store and get them there if you do not have a strainer or a eco-cup/my-k-cup. I checked again and apparently you can get it in eco-pyramid form (tea bag). So… you can have it your way I guess… whatever way you wish to have.

This tea smells amazing. As per my usual I did not add cream or sugar… though if you wish to do so it would probably be great! I would also try it if I had cream and sugar… hmmm… you’ll just have to let me know how that goes. This tea is right up there with Monk’s Blend in my book. Though I want to bake this into a cake… it would be beyond awesome in a cake with cream cheese frosting. I have plans for you tea… yeah… The flavors of cinnamon and cloves are right there in the front of your mouth. The ginger is soothing to the stomach and the cardamom is a perfect palate cleanser.

You will like this tea if you like stronger full-bodied teas. Probably, if you add cream and sugar you would like this tea if you like softer teas. I cannot compare this to other chais; however, as I am not experienced in them so if you are and you’ve tried this one… let me know how it compares.

Will I buy this tea again? Yes. There will from now on be two types of teas with permanent homes in my cupboard… Monks Blend and Tali’s Masala Chai.

~Emme