Deep Thoughts on People that Steal Your Debit Card

So.

If you follow me on twitter, you were lucky enough to see my angry tweets last Wednesday night directed at the lovely human that stole my debit card. If not, here ya go:

tweets

I obviously did a really good job blurring out my profanities.

So, I had lost my debit card a few days before, and hadn’t gotten around to canceling it just yet… When I got an email from my bank saying there were fraudulent charges. Now, I shop A LOT. But this person puts my habits to shame!

And I’m not going to lie to you. I was angry. and really upset. (sorry to the nice lady at the fraud place that I may or may not have yelled at)…

I got off the phone with the bank. and just sat there. I didn’t know what to do next. I was about to start thinking about dinner when this whole ordeal started, and I was now starving. And in desperate need of a glass of wine. It’s really a testament to how low-stress my life is these days. Stress tends to give me really bad migraines… and the last time I had one was in February. Not even an hour later, I had a horrible migraine.

I called my mom, of course. And she offered me a good, healthy dose of perspective! (Where would I be without that woman?!). Thankfully, I can get by until the charges are disputed. I just hope whoever has my card used my money to buy food for his or her starving children… And was able to put gas in the car so they could go volunteer at a homeless shelter. Or something. (150$ at a gas station really makes me think otherwise… But let me dream a little bit).

I’ll be ok. And hopefully they will be too. Fortunately, I am not in a desperate place, like this person was. And I can forgive this person for stealing all my money (mostly because I know I’m going to get it back… Otherwise, a full blown manhunt would have commenced). Life can be really hard sometimes… But I’m very lucky.

-Jess

P.S. The aforementioned emotional breakdown was probably a result of the wine and the migraine. I held the poor little elastic in my hands and just… wept. Misplaced feelings, much? I’m all better now, and I got a new hair-tie. (For some reason, I always only have 1).

15-minute Chicken Cordon Bleu Rice Casserole

It’s been a long couple of weeks for me… Lots of bad luck thrown my way. I went to a funeral this morning, and decided to work from home this afternoon and make one of my favorite college recipes for lunch. It’s a bit of a comfort food for me!! My mom used to make it when I was younger, and the leftovers are SO good. And apparently she found it on the back of a minute rice box? Another plus, you only have to use 1 pan!!

Chicken Cordon Bleu Rice(I’ve decided I don’t have enough natural light in my apartment… This was taken at like 1 in the afternoon on a sunny day!)

 

You guys, I’m not kidding when I say this is the easiest recipe in the entire world. And so versatile … I’ve substituted asparagus for the broccoli before. Used swiss cheese instead of provolone. I’ve eliminated the chicken entirely, and used this as a side dish too.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups White or Brown Minute Rice
  • 1 can Cream of Chicken Soup
  • 1-1/3 cups water
  • 1/3 cup diced or slivered ham
  • 1-2 cups cooked, diced chicken
  • 1 cup broccoli
  • 4-6 slices provolone or swiss cheese
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  1. Brown chicken in oil in large non-stick skillet until done.
  2. Remove from pan
  3. Add soup and water and bring to boil.
  4. Stir in uncooked rice, chicken, broccoli, and ham; Cover.
  5. Cook on low heat for 5 minutes; stir occasionally.
  6. Add cheese to top and re-cover.
  7. Once cheese has melted, stir together.
  8. Serve and Enjoy!

One thing… This is NOT gluten free. The Campbells Cream of Chicken soup has wheat flour in it. I tried to find a gluten free version in the organic section, but couldn’t. You could make this recipe for homemade, gluten free cream of chicken soup and use that in place of the can of soup.

What are your quick/easy recipes that you make when you’re feeling a little sad?

-Jess

Apple Crisp Cheesecake – Attempt #1

Imagine this scene… It’s Saturday night around 11:30. I’m laying in my bed watching TV and casually browsing Pinterest when I stumble across a pin for Apple Crisp Cheesecake. Next thing I know, I’m in the car on the way to the grocery store to buy what I need to make a cheesecake… In the middle of the night.

apple cinnamon crumble cheesecake

(still working on my food photography skills……)

Now, I got to the store and realized that I didn’t really want to make a cheesecake from scratch. SO, I just bought one that was already made… AND they had gluten free cheesecakes! (Proof that “gluten free” does not equal healthy) So, if you want to make this or something similar, you can follow the instructions in the original recipe. Or you can buy an already made cheesecake and just add the apples and the crumble on top! I also eliminated the flour from the crumble, in keeping with the gluten free theme.

Happy baking!

Ingredients:

  • 1 large apple, sliced and peeled
  • 3 tablespoons flour (if you want to add it)
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons oats
  • 2 tablespoons cold butter
  • 1 cheesecake
  • caramel drizzle

Instructions:

  1. In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, oats, and flour. Cut in butter until crumbly. Set aside
  2. Peel and slice apples. Lightly sprinkle with cinnamon and place in small pan over medium heat. Heat until apples are soft. Then add 1-2 layers of apples on top of cheesecake
  3. Pour crumble on top of apples and drizzle with caramel.
  4. Refrigerate until ready to serve!

DISCLAIMER: Remember the part where I said I made this in the middle of the night? Well…. While I was making it, I was thinking to myself … “The crumble in the picture looks a lot lighter than how mine looks.” I thought it was just because I didn’t add flour. WRONG. I mis-read the recipe and accidentally put 3 TABLESPOONS of cinnamon instead of 3 TEASPOONS. So, it looks NOTHING like the original picture. I was so ashamed, I debated not even taking pictures of it. But then I would have nothing to blog today… It was still delicious though. So I went ahead and tried to get a picture.

Have you ever mis-read a recipe? What were you making and how did it turn out?

Also, this little blog helper did not want to get off my lap yesterday… She missed me

20130812-163105.jpg

-Jess

Friday Favorites

T.G.I.F.

I’m ready to have a relaxing weekend at home. Maybe try to get my apartment together (I’ve lived there for 3 months and I still have stuff in boxes!).

Things I’m obsessed with this week:

  • The Bengals. After watching Hard Knocks on Tuesday night, I am SO pumped for this season. Side note: If anyone has an extra 1700 dollars lying around and wants to buy me season tickets, I wouldn’t turn them down.
  • My new Icebreaker Jacket. I have been keeping my eye on this website that sells Merino wool athletic gear for almost a year now… I knew things would have to go on sale eventually. And a few weeks ago, the ENTIRE site was 30% off. So I bought this jacket and have pretty much been living in it since it came in the mail. (Now everything is 40% off and I’m kinda pissed.)
  • We’re The Millers. There isn’t really much to do when I’m on-site at a client… So on Wednesday night, I went and saw “We’re The Millers” (I love seeing movies by myself). It was so hilariously funny, albeit awkward at times. But if you’re looking for a laugh, I recommend going to see it. (P.S. I had read the reviews prior to seeing it, but I really wanted some popcorn and had seen all the other movies that are showing).

Things I’m not obsessed with this week:

  • Shark Week. Yes, that’s right. I said it. I’m absolutely terrified of the ocean and after watching a couple hours of it this week, I’m convinced I’m never going into a body of water that isn’t a pool ever again… Did you know that bull sharks can live in fresh water?! AND they’re super aggressive! So terrified. I’m still having nightmares.
  • Frontier Airlines. WHO DOESN’T SERVE COMPLIMENTARY BEVERAGES ON A 3 HOUR LONG FLIGHT?! SO THIRSTY.

What are you obsessed with this week?

Happy weekend, everyone!!
-Jess

Tips for Organizing Your Pinterest Boards

Seriously, guys… This is something I never thought I would say. I think 6 months ago I actually re-tweeted something from @shitnoonesays that said “I’ve got to organize my pinterest boards”.

But, it has happened.

I was looking for something I KNOW I pinned. Flying between boards, scrolling down, scrolling up, etc. I looked at EVERY single pin I had and could not find it. That’s when I really started looking at what I had pinned. I had a board just called “ME” that had everything from clothes, to recipes, to home decor. These things should be on their own boards!!!

And much like the rest of my life, I realized how unorganized everything was. As my dad would say when we were children in regards to our toys, nothing had a “final resting place”.

So, I set out on a mission to organize my pinterest. I knew it would take a while to go through each pin and decide where it needed to go… And whenever I have a massive undertaking, I start on an airplane. Uninterrupted time where there isn’t really anything better to be doing. I had a 2-1/2 hour flight from Denver to Detroit and I didn’t even come CLOSE to finishing. Thankfully, I also had a 3-1/2 hour layover (probably had better things to be doing… but I’m not one to abandon something mid-project)

tips for organizing your pinterest

SUPER nerd moment: I created an excel spreadsheet with two columns: NAME and WHAT SHOULD BE PINNED HERE. I wrote down all the names of my current boards, what boards I knew I was going to have to create or possibly delete, and what kind of pins I wanted to be in there. This spreadsheet was actually AWESOME to refer back to, when trying to remember what my boards were when deciding if I should leave something in it’s currently location or move it somewhere else. (Since taking that screen shot, I added a breakfast board and a drink board). This is by no means a necessary step. I just had a lot of time to kill and I really like Excel…… (nerd).

pinterest organization

So, If you’re undertaking a task as seemingly insurmountable as organizing pinterest… Follow these tips to potentially make things easier. NOTE: I am not a professional organizer by ANY means… You should see my apartment, the trunk of my car, my purse….. you get the picture.

Tip #1: Change your cover photos. Even if you don’t have to overhaul your boards like I did… You can still rearrange your boards and change/adjust the cover photo for each board. A lot of times, the cover photo is just the first thing you pinned, and it might not be the best cover.

Tip #2: Split up your food board. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone into that board, looking for something to cook for dinner and end up eating chex mix because I couldn’t find something. This way, I can go right into my “dinner party” board and find a main dish to make. This would totally eliminate my “NOM NOM NOM” board (clever name, right?). The only thing I did not break out is the gluten free board. Because I wanted to keep everything that is gluten free together. (and not end up with 40,000 boards. It may be a phase 2 organization project).

Tip #3: Edit pins; Don’t re-pin. I got about halfway through my massive food board before I realized that I was simply re-pinning the pins to new boards, instead of moving the actual pin. Consequently, I now had the same recipes pinned on two separate boards. STRESS!!! It’s definitely easier to just re-pin it. But that’s not what I wanted. I had to go back and delete the pins from the original board. Learn from my mistakes and just move them from the beginning. (P.S. This is the pin I was moving when I realized the mistake I was making… I’ve made this marinade and it’s FANTASTIC!)

EDIT, NOT REPIN

Tip #4: Periodically refresh your screen. When you move a pin from one board to another, it still stays on the screen. If you refresh, it will go away. I think I moved my crockpot applesauce pin several times while thinking “Didn’t I already move this??” because I didn’t know that it had already gone off to another board.

Tip #5: Have a ‘minutia’ board. Have a board for pins that don’t belong on other boards. Previously, this was called “Things I love” … How generic. This board had the same problem my “ME” board had. These pins will probably never fit in anywhere else (sad)… Things that aren’t necessarily funny, food, or fashion now have a final resting place on my minutia board. Example pins: 20 books to read in your 20’s, The Starbucks Secret Menu, how to give your dog CPR, a picture of Tim Tebow, etc.

Tip #6: Use your phone or tablet. It was a lot easier to move pins around from the pinterest iPhone/iPad app as opposed to my computer. I’m not really sure why, since the same number of steps are involved. But I was able to move pins faster. Also, the pins disappear off the board as soon as you move them. No need to refresh.

This was not a light undertaking. It seems silly, but it actually took me a couple of hours to get all the way finished. If your boards are a mess or you don’t have a lot of time to dedicate (like I did), take it one by one. Much more manageable that way.

Do you have any tips for keeping your boards organized? If so, post them in the comments below!

-Jess

Shrimp Tacos with Corn Edamame Salsa

I was at my grandma’s this weekend flipping through a cooking magazine when I came across THIS RECIPE. Since it’s travel week and I knew I wouldn’t be able to eat leftovers, I called my neighbor over for a little sunday mexican fiesta.

Shrimp Tacos with Corn Edamame Salsa(Still working out my food photography skills…)

The original recipe left a little to be desired, in my opinion. So, I improvised on the salsa (next time I will add a jalapeno) and added a PHENOMENAL chipotle cheese (I just went up to the cheese counter at the grocery store and asked the woman working for a mexican-type pepperjack cheese. She hit the nail on the head with this one!)

The most time-consuming part of this recipe was making the salsa (neighbor said it tasted very “fresh”). Once we decided it was time to eat, the food was ready in about 10 minutes.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup fresh corn kernels
  • 1 cup cooked, shelled edamame (You can usually find edamame already shelled in the organic freezer section at the grocery store)
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheese
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped green onions
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3 limes juiced, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1/4 cup light sour cream
  • 8 (6-inch) corn tortillas

1. Preheat broiler to high.

2. Combine corn, edamame and oil in small bowl; toss gently to coat. Arrange in an even layer on a cookie sheet; Cover with salt and pepper; broil 6 minutes or until lightly browned.

3. Combine corn/edamame, green onion, cilantro, tomato, the juice of 1 lime, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl; toss gently. (Original recipe calls for avocado, but I don’t like avocado, so that was omitted). This can be prepared beforehand and set aside… Also makes a great salsa for dipping!

4. Combine sour cream and the juice of 1 lime in a small bowl. Can also be made beforehand and set aside.

5. Heat a large grill pan over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Combine shrimp, the juice of 1 lime, and honey in a medium bowl; toss to coat. Add shrimp to pan; cook 2 minutes on each side or until done.

6. Warm tortillas according to package directions. I just put each tortilla in a small skillet for 10-15 seconds per side. Place 2 tortillas on each of 4 plates. Top each tortilla with about 1/4 cup salsa, about 4 shrimp, 1-1/2 teaspoons sour cream mixture, and a sprinkle of your choice of cheese!

7. Serve and enjoy!

Neighbor and I sat and watched The Shawshank Redemption and enjoyed our quick little meal. Now he has leftovers for the week! Good Sunday night in my book!

What would you add to or change about this recipe?

-Jess

FINALLY THURSDAY

WHAT. A. WEEK.

Thursdays are the best day of the week in the consulting world… Because it means you FINALLY get to go home. My week has been crazy up and down, and I’m so excited to go home today.

Since this blog is a blank canvas, I am going to test out ideas as I go. I think on Thursdays or Fridays, I’m going to share my weekly obsessions. We’ll see how it goes. But that’s what I’m doing today!

OBSESSIONS:

  • Iced Peach Green Tea Lemonade from Starbucks. I think I’ve had one every day this week… Better than a cup of coffee on a warm morning and the perfect afternoon outside drink. This is definitely my summer go-to.
  • My new camera. I’ve been experimenting with it this week (I just couldn’t leave it all alone in Ohio!!) and I’ve taken some really cool pictures of the rainbow outside my hotel, and the sushi I had for dinner on Monday. I also bought this tutorial and plan on playing with that this weekend!
  • My job. I had a really looooong day yesterday trying to figure out one particularly perplexing issue. I was feeling so defeated, because I spent all afternoon searching for answers and couldn’t find any. THEN. As I was leaving… I figured it out! Hard work pays off, you guys.
  • Orange is The New Black. I was watching a few episodes of this Netflix original series last night and LITERALLY laughing out loud to myself in my hotel room. The people next door must have thought I was crazy… Because I’m almost positive they could hear me.

Things I’m not obsessed with:

  • Speeding Tickets. Enough said.

What are you obsessed with this week?

Have a good weekend! I’m going to take a stab at one of my pinterest recipes tomorrow for dinner… So stay tuned!!

-Jess

Here goes nothing…

One of my favorite things lately has been reading blogs. I find a recipe on Pinterest, and the next thing I know, it’s been an hour and I’ve been reading about a strangers life in Arizona and I’m late for work.

I’ve been toying with the idea of blogging ever since I got back from Italy (4years ago) … But never really knew what to blog about, if anyone would bother reading it, or if I would even keep up with it.

But after downloading and reading all of my previous tweets this week, I decided I wanted to have a place to go back to, years down the road, and remember exactly what I was doing during the best years of my life.

So, armed with several ideas from google searches, all of the recipes and craft ideas on my Pinterest boards, and my new Nikon d3100 (came in the mail on Friday!), I’m about to start my journey into the world of blogging.

Thanks for coming along for the ride!

-J