Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Favorite Christmas Movies!

One of my favorite things to do on Christmas is watch movies. After the hustle and bustle...after the family dinners and present openings, it is a good way to decompress. Many of my favorites happen to take place during the holiday season but aren't necessarily Christmas themed (like "White Christmas" or "Miracle on 34th Street") Here are some of my favorite movies to watch during the holiday season...

(1) While You Were Sleeping
(2) The Holiday
(3) Love Actually

I also like to look for cheesy romantic Holiday movies on the Hallmark Channel and Lifetime. I just finished "Eve's Christmas" on Lifetime and it was terrific! It really warmed my heart. Back when ABC Family had a lot of fun cheesy movies, there was a great movie with Kristin Davis called "Three Days". Does anyone remember that one?

I'm watching "A boyfriend for Christmas" on the Hallmark channel now (I dvr'd it). I'm only 15 minutes in so I haven't decided if I'm hooked yet!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Holiday Happenings!

The Fiance and I had 15 or so friends over for a cocktail holiday party last night. Honestly, I wanted an excuse to show off my holiday decorations as well as all my holiday serving pieces! Plus I love to cook for people when I can. We served an array of appetizers as well as Poinsettias, lots of red wine and beer for the boys. The appetizers were well received! I made a Seven Layer Taco Dip that satisfied my requirement to offer at least one vegetarian friendly dish when I entertain. I also had a tasty (store bought) Spinach and Artichoke dip. However my Seven Layer Dip along with my Chicken Satay were the hit of the party!

We had a great turn out. It was a great way for our friends to meet each other. Also, we got to play the Wii, which is always fun with a group of people!

Unfortunately I have to work tomorrow but only till 2pm. Then it is off to my parents' house for Christmas Eve dinner!

I hope everyone is having a Happy Holidays!

Friday, December 07, 2007


I hate being lactose intolerant.


That is all.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Post Thanksgiving Eats

The Fiance and I were over all the heavy food we had been consuming this weekend. So it was time to consult my two favorite websites for recipes: www.AllRecipes.com and www.foodtv.com

We didn't want to have anything that contained leftovers nor did we want anything heavy on the tummy. Thus we had the following tasty dishes for lunch and dinner. I have to admit, I was plesantly surprised they both turned out well. Both were new recipes for me to try!

For lunch, we had Panzanella, which is an Italian bread salad. We used the Barefoot Contessa's recipe, which consisted cubed bread, tomatoes, yellow peppers, red peppers, basil, cucumbers and a tasty homemade vinegrette. A link to the recipe I used can be found here. This was the perfect lighter lunch. I especially loved all the veggies!

For dinner, we had Fish Tacos! This recipe is courtesy of the Food Network, more specifically EPCOT Catering. There is a show called Behind the Bash that shows you what goes on behind throwing a big party. These mahi tacos were served at a Disney Anniversary Party. I substituted Tilapia for the Mahi as Mahi isn't easily found this time of year. Also I added cheese, corn, avocado and romaine lettuce as toppers for the tacos. These were a big hit with the fiance and I'll definitely be making this one again.

We are trying to balance out the heavy holiday meals with ones like these. Any suggestions on some sucessfull lighter recipes would be appreciated!!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Ten Things I'm Loving Right Now!

I apologize for being MIA! Work and wedding planning has been taking up a lot of time. However, I did want to share the ten things I'm loving right now (aside from the fiance and family of course!)

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(1) Twinings Chai Latte for the Tassimo: No longer will I have to go to Starbucks to get my Chai Latte fix!

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(2) Tripadvisor.com: I'm planning a December long weekend in Savannah and a Honeymoon in California Wine Country, so this site is invaluable to me!

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(3) Sugar Free Syrup for my Coffee/Chai Latter: Paired with our Tassimo, it's like having my own coffee shop in our kitchen.

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(4) Taste of Home Cookbook: I got this for Christmas last year. It is a great collection of recipes and most importantly, cooking tips like the temp that chicken needs to be at!

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(5) Sweet Potato Fries: Alexia makes a great brand of sweet potato fries. Best served with a side of garlic mayo. YUMMY!

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(6) Real Simple Magazine: From the useful tips to the art direction of this mag, what's not to love?

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(7) Sunday Puzzle on NPR: It is rare that I miss the Sunday Puzzle. Great word puzzles to help wake your brain up!

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(8) NFL: What's a Fall Sunday without NFL?! Enough said.

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(9) How I Met Your Mother: Suit Up! Best tv on Mondays!

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(10) Revlon Ceramic Hairdryer: The reason behind my non poofy hair! It's like getting a professional blow out!

What are your favorite things??

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Southern gals love their southern food!

I love southern food. I know that it isn't the healthiest but I love it just the same. While in my favorite Publix, I decided that we needed to have biscuits. I've always been a little wary of the Pillsbury frozen biscuits, but I decided to give them a shot. boy was I mistaken! These biscuits are fantastic! Just before they came out of the oven, I brushed a little bit of butter on the top. Perfection. Served with country fried steak, corn and gravy, it was the perfect little southern meal. Needless to say, my fiance was one happy camper!

Sunday, September 30, 2007


I've been tagged by Not So Single Girl! Here goes!

Four Jobs I Have Had In My Life

1. Cashier at a Hallmark store
2. Cashier at Disney World!
3. Research assistant in a biology lab
4. Waitress Extrodinaire

Four Movies I Can Watch Over and Over

1. Under the Tuscan Sun
2. French Kiss
3. The Goonies
4. While you were sleeping

Four TV Shows I Like to Watch

1. How I Met Your Mother
2. Nip/Tuck
3. The Office
4. Beauty and the Geek

Four Places I Have Vacationed (Wow, do I need one now!)

1. Buenos Aires ( It was work but like a vacation!)
2. San Francisco
3. Philippines
4. Bahamas

Four of My Favorite Dishes

1. Caprese salad (tomato, basil and mozzerella)
2. Thai Peanut curry
3. Spicy tuna sushi roll
4. Sweet Potato fries (more a side, not really a dish!)

Four Web sites I Visit Daily

1. Gmail
2. Myspace/Facebook
3. Netvibes
4. Wedding Bee!

Four Places I Would Rather Be

1. Visiting friends in Chicago
2. Drinking wine in Wine Country
3. Buenos Aires!
4. NYC

Tuesday, August 28, 2007


No fall boots or winter coats for me to purchase this year. Where I won't miss the cold completely, I will miss the fashion options.


Saturday, August 25, 2007

Finally! Pictures from Argentina!

My trip was wonderful! Buenos Aires is a romantic and cosmopolitan city with lots of charm. The architecture is gorgeous, the people are beautiful and gracious and the food is incredible! Highlights included:

* Futbol game (Argentinos Jrs. v. Boca Jrs.)
* Exploring Recoleta cemetary and shopping at the open air market
* Delicious food over leisurely and fun (but looong) dinners!
* A Fun Tango show
* Dancing at Sunset until 4am
* Great people to share it all with!

Yes, I did work too. It was an amazing experience to interview Argentines for opportunities in the US!

Here is a glimpse into my trip. For the first time ever in my blog, I will have pictures of me in there!

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Don't Cry for me...

Because I'm leaving for ARGENTINA!! Yes, my company is sending me to Buenos Aires for a week on a recruiting trip. I am a lucky lucky girl!! I'm leaving in a few hours and will be back stateside by Thursday early morning! I hope to have the opportunity to take a lot of pics to post here.

Wish me luck on the trip!!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Seven Things About me

Argh! I typed my whole response to Not-so-Single Girl in the South's seven random things about me and when I tried to publish it...poof! Gone!

So here goes again...

(1) I'm obsessed with all things trivia. From Trivial Pursuit to the World Series of Pop Culture to NTN Trivia, I love it all.
(2) I still squeal when I spot John Krasinski on any tv show or movie trailer. I totally didn't expect him to pop up in The Holiday!!! Hehe, yes I am BEHIND.
(3) I love reading recipies but rarely use them.
(4) I didn't really learn how to cook until I moved to Chicago. Now I really enjoy it and like to find ways to make my favorite take-out food at home.
(5) I am an NPR nerd.
(6) When I drink water, I always spill a little on me.
(7) I think Rob & Big are stupidly hilarious.

I would like to tag my sis (if she still reads this!)

Tuesday, May 22, 2007


I didn't realize I had been MIA for a month!! Time really goes by quickly!

So the boyfriend err....fiance and I are going to Orlando for the weekend. It'll be fun to get a change in scenery for a day or two. Nope, we are going to Disney World or Universal. Believe it or not, there is actually non touristy things to do in Orlando! I went to school there for 2 years. I lived in a charming little town just outside Orlando, where I would spend my Saturday mornings at the local farmer's market and my evenings at one of the sidewalk cafes. It really was an oasis from the tourist trap of Orlando. There is also a great little neighborhood near downtown called College Park. I highly recommend stopping by if you are in the area!

Sunday, May 20, 2007

My other blog!

I don't want to bore what few regular readers I have with posts about my upcoming wedding, so I've created a new blog. I'm still going to post on this blog, but it will be my oasis from wedding planning :)

Anyway, if you are interested, here is the link to my wedding blog:


Friday, April 20, 2007

How it happened!!

Because I just adore (Not so Single) Gal's blog, here is the story of how the engagement happened!

We are dog sitting for her parents dog (whom I LOVE). She is a black
lab named KC. Anyway I got home from work and Jeff was waiting at the
top of the stairs with KC and a bouquet of flowers. He gave me the
flowers and I was more excited to see the dog! I was down on the
ground with her and then Jeff gets on his knees and says "oh look what
KC has for you on her collar" and there it is, my ring dangling from
her collar! I said "are you for real? (I know, i'm so romantic) and he
asked me to marry him and of course I said yes!

He had asked my parents for my hand in marriage last month and then
talked to my sister. All of our friends here were in on it! We
normally meet them every Wednesday night at a local restaurant so
after I made some calls, we headed there and got to celebrate with

Thursday, April 19, 2007




Sunday, March 25, 2007


I am loving being home but I will have to admit there are a few things I miss about Chi-town (aside from my friends!).


(1) Intelligentsia Coffee
(2) Baseball
(3) Good Concerts

I hope to visit again soon!!

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Week 3: Grow Aerogarden Grow!

Again, the cilantro is on the short bus. But check out the Italian Basil! I will start harvesting it next week!!

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Update on my Aerogarden!

Here is my garden at 2 weeks + 1 day. Aside from the cilantro, the herbs are growing nicely. The BF did some research and found out that the water pump may be causing the cilantro not to grow. So I'm going to call Aerogarden to see about getting a replacement or something. Otherwise, look how cool this is!!

Saturday, March 03, 2007

One of the coolest presents I've ever gotten...

My BF is a really good gift giver. He always manages to think of something that I would love without having asked him to get me. My birthday is on Monday and he went ahead and gave me my present now since we are celebrating tonight with our families.

So I love to cook and love using really good quality ingredients, including fresh herbs. However we are limited on space here plus we don't have a yard, so having my own herb garden is challenging. Lo and behold, I get this for my bday:

It is an Aerogarden and will allow me to grow my own organic herbs in my own kitchen! It is like a super fancy science experiment. Or like my own mini version of The Living with the Land exhibit at EPCOT. In a few weeks, I will have my own mint, italian basil, cilantro, parsley, purple basil, and chives!! I'll be sure to post pics when it starts to grow. THe pic above is what it should look like when fully grown.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Do you know your neighbors?

When I lived in Chicago, I rarely interacted with my neighbors. In the Lake Shore Drive highrise, I would see people on my floor only once a week! Sometimes, I would ride the elevator down with my across the hall neighbor. However we would speak few words if any and just stare straight ahead on the seemingly long ride down. When I moved to the courtyard building in Wrigleyville, again I rarely saw my neighbors. When I did, it was just the quick hello and nod.

Fast Forward to condo in Florida. A few weeks after moving in, our neighbor came over to introduce himself. He came bearing a bottle of champagne to boot. It was so friendly and so unexpected. I had some baked goodies that I had made with my bf's mom. I assembled a little plate and sent the bf to bring them over the next day.

Last weekend, I got the urge to baked Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting. Being the Semi-Homemade girl that I am, I used boxed Red Velvet Cake mix (Duncan Hines). However I made the cream cheese frosting from scratch -- an activity that ended up being fun! Of course I make way too many cupcakes. I decided to bring some over to our new neighbor that moved in. We weren't sure exactly when she moved in, but we did notice she would always park in my bf's beloved parking space. :) Anyway, I packed up 2 cupcakes and hopped over to her door. I thought I would just drop off, say a few words and leave. I ended up chatting with her for like 15 minutes. She lives there with her husband. She's very friendly and was floored that I brought her cupcakes as a "welcome to the neighborhood" present.

I headed back to our place. I wasn't there more than 10 minutes before we got a knock at our door. It was said friendly neighbor who gushed about my cupcakes--especially the frosting. It was boost to my day! The next night, the BF's friend is in town and we had just finished dinner. BF was being the good BF he is by taking out the trash. He ran into said neighbor and next thing you know, they are coming up the stairs to get more cupcakes! Evidentally she told him how much she and her hubby liked them so BF invited her up to get more. Thank goodness because I was about to eat them all myself :)

For the few blogging friends I have, here is a picture of the cupcakes!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

In honor of Valentine's Day..

I work from home so I decided I would play my favorite cheesy romantic comedies on our kick butt tv in honor of Valentine's Day.

I'm starting with Never Been Kissed (Swooning for Michael Vartan).

Then moving to Win A Date With Tad Hamilton (Swooning for Topher Grace).

I think I'll end with The Wedding Planner (Swooning for Matthew McConaughey).

Then the BF will be coming home to cook me dinner. YUM!

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Super Bowl Snacks

We're having friends over for Superbowl. Like good hosts, we will have plenty of food and drink available. We're serving the following...

- Chicago Style Hot Dogs (please, no ketchup)
- Filipino Eggrolls (Lumpia) with Sweet Chili Sauce for dipping
- Ranch & Bacon Pasta Salad
- Egg Salad Sandwiches - originally was going to be Deviled Eggs but when I peeled the eggs, I messed up a couple of them :(
- Fried Chicken Wings with Blue Cheese dressing, celery and carrots
- Honey Dijon Kettle Chips
- Yellow Cake cupcakes with chocolate frosting
- Beer. More beer.

We always have too much food when people come over but I'd rather that then to run out.

They were talking about Super Bowl Parties this week on Good Morning America. They said that the average American consumes 1,200 calories during Super Bowl. Yah I can safely say we are hitting that but hey, this is the one time of year where I can serve so many bad food together.

Also can you believe the NFL was not allowing the church to throw a Super Bowl Party? Seriously like the NFL doesn't already make enough money. I know they are worried about viewership going down with the rise in Super Bowl Parties, but isn't this only if Nielsen families aren't watching the game?

Happy Super Bowl Sunday!

Monday, January 29, 2007

En fuego

The weather in Florida is supposed to drop into the 20's tonight. In honor of the cold weather, we lit our first fire in the fireplace! Yay. I wish I had marshmallows though..

Sunday, January 28, 2007

All it takes is one bad apple...

One of my best friends and I went to see the touring Broadway show Sweet Charity. The touring cast has Molly Ringwald as the lead. She did a pretty decent job and was cute as a button. However there was a show competing with Sweet Charity. A Show in the back of the theater specifically. An extremely belligerent woman was screaming throughout the first half of the performance. It would be one thing if she screamed while people were clapping. Oh no. She was screaming during the performance--repeating lines being said by the characters. Both my friend and I went to get the usher. Eventually police came and escorted her out of there. Her friends were mortified to say the least.

Aside from the "heckler", we had a great time. People watching is always one of the best parts of going out around here. The weather is a tad chilly here in Florida right now. I was amazed to see the large number of women who wore fur coats! It was chilly but certainly not fur wearing weather. Plus, WHY would you even own fur in the South?

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Slugfest in the Midwest....

The Colts came back from an 18 point deficit to defeat Tom Brady and the "Legendary" New England Patriots. Peyton and his boys have a ticket to Miami and the Super Bowl in two weeks! And against the Bears --- what a game that will be. Against all the naysayers (even I'm guilty of this), the Bears will get a chance to do their Super Bowl Shuffle again.

In honor of Da Bears making it to the Big Game, we will be dining on Chicago Style Hot Dogs. I ordered the neon green relish, mustard, sport peppers and celery salt from Vienna Beef. All we need are the dogs, poppyseed buns, onions, tomatoes and dill pickles. If you have never dined on a Chicago Style Hot Dog, Wiki has a little write up here.

I'll post pictures of our Chicago dogs after the game!

Thursday, January 11, 2007


I wonder if there is a max out in the number of changes you can have in a short period of time. In the past 6 weeks, I have...

1) Moved to Florida
2) Started working from home
3) Went from long distance dating to in person/cohabitation
4) Flipped my social calendar (from going out queen to slight homebody)
5) Switched from PC to MAC

It's no wonder I'm a little pooped!

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

It's been a while!

The Holidays are over and my somewhat normal schedule is slowly reappearing. The theme of my holiday was cooking and entertaining.

We held two holiday dinners at our humble abode. The first one was on Christmas Eve. I had my first sit-down, somewhat formal dinner. I'm talking china... tablecloths + coordinating fabric placemats and napkins. Our families came over for dinner and it was a success! I was smart and accepted any help that was offered. I only had to cook/glaze the ham and make the green bean casserole. All the other goodies were brought. The table loked beautiful too! I even had a holiday centerpiece. My motif was a rich dark wintery blue and silver. Yes. I'm a dork!

The second party was much easier. NYE with a few friends, heavy appetizers and lots of beer. I rocked Paula Deen's curry chicken salad recipe. I also had some devlied eggs (duh-- we are in the South), lumpia (Filipino Eggrolls), a winter salad with walnuts, gorgonzola and cranberries complete with a from scratch dressing, chips and salsa and brownie cupcakes.

We got our first tree compliments of my dad and trimmed with a mix of donated and personal ornaments. I even had a mantle to decorate. :)

Hope your holidays were wonderful!