Monday, January 16, 2006

good eats from mom's kitchen

As many of you know, my mom is a great cook. In fact, that's what she does for a living. While we were home for Christmas she treated us to lots of yummy meals. This recipe is for some absolutely amazing muffins she made one morning. Its adapted from a recipe in Cooking Light magazine, with mom's own special touches. It's a low fat, good for you breakfast that will fill you up and give you the oomph you need for your day (did i mention its absolutely amazing). Also, feel free to substitute your favorite fruit for the blueberries.. i was thinking cranberries with a little zest of lemon or orange... mmm.


blueberry muffins:
1.5 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup quick cooking oats (find these near oatmeal/poptarts in the grocery store)
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder (it needs a lot to hold the fruit together)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups low-fat vanilla yogurt
1/2 cup 2% milk (i used skim and it was still ok)
3 tablespoons canola oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1.5-2 cups of blueberries (i like more, you might like less)

almond streusel:
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon butter, melted


1.Preheat oven to 400
2. Combine dry ingredients (spoon into measuring cups and level with a knife) and mix
3. Combine wet ingredients together
4. Combine wet and dry mixtures together, stir until just moist.
5. Fold in blueberries.
6. Spoon rounded tablespoons into greased muffin pan.

7. Combine ingredients
8. Sprinkle evenly over muffin batter.
9. Bake at 400 for 15 minutes or until muffins spring back in center
10. Cool and serve. Recipe makes ~24 muffins.

Tip: Muffin pan liners can be annoying to work with. I have banned them from my kitchen and find that a light coating of Pam on the pans allows you to get them out with ease. This way you don't have all your yummy goodness sticking to the paper, and you can eat them when they are hot instead of waiting for them to cool so you can peel the paper off. Also, it gives a bit of a starbucks/bakery feel especially if you make them oversized. You can also do this with cupcakes.

Thursday, November 10, 2005


Tonight we had our first martinis! I tried to find a recipe that would be similar to the one I had before. This ended up tasting similar but having a totally different appearance. The one I had was greenish and had a cherry garnish. We decided to use melon balls as the garnish and it came out pretty orangish. Here is the recipe:

1 oz of vodka (we used absolute... most people say you could also use a citrus flavored vodka)
1 oz of midori (this is awesome and bright green)
1.5 oz of watermelon juice (we just bought a 1/4 watermelon, pureed it in the blender and strained off the juice.. it makes about a 1/4 gallon)
.5 oz of lemon juice (you can use fresh squeezed or the little lemon shaped bottle from the store)

then.. shake shake shake and toss in a melon ball. YUMMY!

Monday, October 31, 2005

Our new old bar

Most of you who know me, know I don't drink much. In fact, I never had a drink until 2 years ago when Jason and I had champagne on our honeymoon. Since then, I've lightened up (a little) but I have been limited to a glass of wine with dinner (the only kind i like is Riesling) and possibly a Margarita with Mexican food. One night we got Martinis at a place in downtown Columbia called Rust and I think they are so fun. They come in a million different flavors and aren't too strong (at least the ones i like) and I can usually only drink one. Anyway, this sparked my interest in having a little bar at home. I think I will try to recreate the watermelon martini I had at Willy's Foxfire Grill for my first home concotion.

Here is how it came about: We bought a pressboard hutch for 100$ at walmart two years ago for our apartment at Maguire Village on UF Campus. Our kitchen was about 4ft x 4ft, and our dining room was about twice that size, so it only made sense to display the Sango dishes given to us for our wedding in the large dining room. Now that we have moved, our kitchen is thankfully large enough to store all our utensils/dishes/pans. So hmm... what to do with the hutch. Newspaper... side of the curb... garage sale... goodwill. Well, I had this crazy idea that we could take off the top and just use the cabinet part under our stairway. Turned out i saved most of the pieces that didn't fall apart on deconstruction, just in case i had any more wild ideas. And to no ones surprise i did! We bought some brackets at home depot and turned the whole thing into a mini bar for our living room/dining room. Now the space gets used under the stairs and you don't have to go all the way to the kitchen to make a drink or grab a snack when (if we ever) have people over :)! Now i just need to buy some more funky shaped glasses and a few kinds of alcohol and we are on our way to assorted fun flavors.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Festive Art

So Jason and I had a date last night... Fazoli's and Pumpkin Carving. It may not sound like much but I guess we both got really into it. Jason decided he wanted to do something with the Gators logo(no we haven't been converted to Carolina fans yet) and for some reason Shrek popped into mind for me. So we bought 2 pumpkins at Walmart for $3.50, and started hacking. I found a crazy website where a guy makes patterns from photos and printed a pattern. Jason made his own pattern from a gator logo he found online! We were up until 1:30am, but the end result is pretty spectacular. We used the cheap carving tools we picked up from Walmart and found that we used something in place of every tool except the saw. For the dot poker we used a thumb tack, a skewer makes good holes, an exacto knife helps cut out the pattern. BUT.. you need that little saw thing. I broke mine and miserably hacked atthe pumpkin with a steak knife until jason was done with his saw :) (no..I didn't break his). This is really easy with the right tools though and I think anyone old enough or mentally stable enough to handle sharp objects should be able to create an artsy pumpkin. HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

Here's Shrek glowing in the dark!

Go Gators!!

But..the pumpkins don't look so hot in the daylight.....

Sunday, August 21, 2005

"Our Kitty"

This is the most beautifulest neighboorhood cat ever. She wouldn't go back to her owner's house after they had a baby (they think she was jealous). So the next door neighboor started feeding her. We quickly found that she likes to nap under our shade trees and that she loves kitty treats and being brushed. Her real name is Abby, but the new caretakers call her Sally Jane.. We are still trying to figure that one out :). We would like to get our own pet, but for now we are enjoying playing with this sweet girl. The second picture is kinda blurry, she was running to brush against Jason's leg as he was trying to take it.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

take a walk along the yellow brick road

We took a few pictures before our junk got in the way, but i took most of these today. So here is my first real post and your very own virtual tour of our new house for those of you who like details.

The house looks different depending on the time of day. Also, the picture on the left was taken last winter, so you can see the yard is much greener now. All those leaves will be fun to clean up in fall :).

We had this "BRIGHT" idea of painting the door a terracotta-ish color... somehow it turned out Gator orange, but the newly painted house numbers and kickplate look much better than before. We'll see if the door color gets adjusted... I just painted it today.

One other interesting characteristic of the exterior, before we start our tour, is what i like to call "The Shrine". I don't know who or why, but this is not going to work.... I especially like the one weed growing from the center.

Walking up to the house from the sidewalk.

This is what you see when you walk into the door. Its a long hallway and then you see the underside of the open staircase at the end.

To the left.

To the right. This is the living room.

Living room view from the dining room.

Dining room view from the living room.

Deck off the dining room.


Sliding glass door off of kitchen, tons of tools.

Deck off Kitchen, and the driveway.

Deck off the kitchen.

I think this is supposed to be a fence in the backyard.. it's eventually gotta go.

Stairs to the master suite. Ooh La la.

Crooked picture of the master bedroom.

View of "The Shrine" from the master.

Master Bath, who knew wallpaper would be THIS rough.

Master Closet

Master Copper Shower...

Master Deck

Master Walk-in Attic Access with a finished floor... this is so HANDY!

Headed back downstairs

Entry to two downstairs bedrooms and bath.

Downstairs Bath.. this has been the most "finished" room from the start. Believe it or not that's textured wallpaper... and it's gonna stay... for now :).

Guest Bedroom. This will get tackled next. Gotta love the "vintage" ceiling fan.

Jason's Office... yes.. that's him working. Don't worry he has shorts on.

That's all for now. To check out the previous pictures go to :


Monday, June 20, 2005


this is my first test post, i will try to write something coherent (and possibly interesting) in the future.... don't hold your breath