A Day to Remember

Today was a fantastic Valentine’s Day! I remember thinking during many a Valentine’s Day in college that I’d never love V-Day, I’d just think of it as “Singles Awareness Day” for my entire life. Today was the kind of V-Day that I’d always hoped for!

Rather than boring you with all the details, I’ll show you the day in pictures!

I hope you all had a wonderful day too, whether or not you celebrated Valentine’s Day! The winner for the sushi scarf will be announced in the morning and comments are now CLOSED! Don’t forget to get your BSI entries in by tomorrow night!

Have a great night all!

xoxo,

Fun and Fabulous Friday!

Today was a fantastic end to a very long week. I had far too many days where I was up too late and got up too early, and with the full moon on Tuesday, my students were INSANE!

I left work today at 2:15 and made a 45-mile drive southeast to my old stomping grounds to pick up Jenn and another blog reader for my first-ever Blogger meet up! I was SO EXCITED! I spent most of my drive out there antsy and nervous… what if they don’t like me?! What if I’m overdressed? What if they laugh at my food? Then, I met them, and PHEW! They were SO very nice and normal! We headed down to the Chicago Loop to Thai Spoon and Sushi and met up with Rose. She too was so nice and fun! It was really nice to hang with a group of girls.

Let me tell you, there was a LOT of tofu on our table! I got sushi (of course) and my Friday night treat of a Diet Coke.

Yup, Friday Night Sushi!

Yup, Friday Night Sushi!

Also on the table was age-dashi tofu (a Japanese fried tofu dish), fried tofu sticks with peanut sauce, and 2 types of pad thai, one with tofu! The sushi was great, and the conversation was even better!

After dinner, our reader friend took a pic of the 3 bloggers:

EatingBender, OnALobsterPlacemat, imadedinner (thats me!)

EatingBender, OnALobsterPlacemat, imadedinner (thats me!)

After dinner, we dropped Rose off at another restaurant to meet up with her friends, and we headed back to the suburbs. On the way home, I stopped at a childhood favorite (ok, its still a favorite) restaurant to get carry out for Adam. This place is one of my favorites for an exceptionally inexpensive dinner out, and it’s fantastic Mediterranean food. If you’re ever in the Chicagoland area, you MUST go to Pita Inn! (Don’t forget your promise, Jenn!) ANYWAY, I got Adam his food, and got a small babagannouj (roasted egplant dip) for me.

There was warm pita bread too!

There was warm pita bread too!

Then Adam and I split the cupcake that Jenn so generously got for me, and I’ll be hopped up on the sugar for a while!

HOW freaking cute is that?!

HOW freaking cute is that?! Thanks Jenn!

ALSO, there was a package for me when I got home from my mom! She’s on a short vacation visiting her husband’s family, but still managed to send me a Valentine’s present! There was a bright green ProFlowers box on the counter, and when I opened it, there was the most GORGEOUS bouquet of pink, red, and white tulips! Thanks Axor 🙂

dscn2060

Now, some blogger business!

  • Are you having a hard time coming up with BSI recipes? Check here for some inspiration! Don’t forget to get your BSI entries in by SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 15!!!!
  • I’ll be picking the winner for my 100th Post Giveaway TOMORROW evening at 9 p.m. CDT, and the winner will be announced Sunday morning, so get those entries in!!! I know you want to win the cutest scarf in the world 🙂

Thanks for such a fun night ladies, I had a seriously great time. It was worth every minute of time and every ounce of gas!!!

My 100th Post Giveaway!

Ok, it’s really my 102nd, but who’s counting??

You’ve seen over the last 3 months (Has it really been that long?) that I have a HUGE obsession with all things sushi. My fiance and I go for sushi as often as we can afford, heck, we even got engaged over sushi! I’ll even go to the grocery store and get sushi for breakfast sometimes! I love the detail that goes into making sushi, and all the thought that goes into the flavors in the different rolls we get. I love the ritual of making it, the skill… ok, and the cute little table things that the sushi comes served on, the chopsticks, the tiny little dishes that the soy sauce goes into… get it? I freaking love sushi.

I also love my other random hobby (besides cooking and blogging), crocheting. I love zoning out with a hook and some yarn and just going nuts. Heck, I even crocheted a hat for my Secret Cupid! I decided a while back (just ask Beadie) that for my first giveaway, I would somehow combine my two hobbies.

What?? Crocheting and SUSHI?!

So I decided to make this scarf for you all to attempt to win (rules below).

100% handmade!

100% handmade!

It’s a nice long scarf, perfect for the coldest of days, or for those of you in warmer climates, I know you like to ski, or visit colder climates occasionally, so you’ll still want to enter.

BUT WAIT!

This scarf has a secret. When it’s rolled up, it successfully combines 2 of my favorite things:

IT'S SUSHI!!!

IT'S SUSHI!!!

It’s fat-free, salt-free, wheat-free, rice-free, gluten-free, vegan-friendly, completely and utterly wearable SUSHI! And the best part my lovelies? I made it. I can’t make edible sushi to save my life, but I can certainly make wearable sushi!

You want this scarf? Just leave a comment below!! If you have a blog and want to link back to this post, you can, but it’s not a requirement.

I’ll use random.org to pick a random number on Saturday, February 14! As much as I love my Canadian and other international readers, I’m a teacher and can’t afford the shipping to countries other than the U.S, so this is open to U.S. readers only.

Oh, and by the way, we had pizza for dinner.

Thin crust with mushrooms, green peppers, and sausage. YUM!

Thin crust with mushrooms, green peppers, and sausage. YUM!

Don’t forget to get those BSI entries coming!



What a Wonderful Day!!

Today was just fantastic! For one, it was Friday, which is awesome. AND it was payday: DOUBLE awesome. I spent the afternoon after work with my friend Judee (of simple pasta recipe fame) getting a manicure and pedicure. My toes are now HOT pink, and my nails are a beautiful magenta… much more cheerful than those dark purples that are around!

I got home to 2 surprises, one of which you need to see for yourself:

This is a side of a box!

This is a side of a box!

My Secret Cupid gift came! It was in this beautifully decorated box, and upon opening the package, I found the cutest assortment of gifts and the sweetest card from Caroline over at ConsiderEatz! THANK YOU SO MUCH CAROLINE!!!!! I’m in love with all of my lovely gifts!

The sweetest gift EVER!

The sweetest gift EVER!

Caroline sent me a tiny green vase (she read about my love of tiny things), an adorable pink owl scrubby sponge (my love of pink things!), caramel soy crisps which I’m now DYING to try, and the lovely cloth that they’re all laying on? Yeah, its a beautiful tiered apron that deserves its own picture:

I'd model it, but I think it looks better on the table

I'd model it, but I think it looks better on the table

I cant wait to use it!

When the mailman came, he knocked on the door, which meant there was a package! Adam opened the door and said “WHOA Heavy package!” YAY! My package from Janny over at POM Wonderful came! We now have a shelf full of 8 adorable bottles of POM juice! Thanks Janny!

I can't wait to cook with this stuff!

I can't wait to cook with this stuff!

Now, on to dinner. Since it’s Friday, Adam and I wanted to go out. We could NOT decide on a single place to go, so we ended up at Sweet Tomatoes (also known as Souplantation in some areas of the country). I got myself a HUGE salad:

Sorry for the crappy phone pics, I forgot my camera!

Sorry for the crappy phone pics, I forgot my camera!

Then continued my meal with a small baked potato with broccoli and cheese sauce:

Cheesy goodness

Cheesy goodness

Then, I finished off my dinner with a lovely sundae: warm chocolate cake, vanilla soft serve, and caramel sauce. This whole bowl is under a cup, so this was JUST enough!

YUM!

YUM!

We ran a couple errands, and I came home and we’re watching “21” on OnDemand. So far, its a great movie. As I was catching up on blog reading, I found that the SITS girls (Secret is in the Sauce) are holding a FAB contest to win an entire bedroom dream set including sheets, sheet spray, and all sorts of other goodies. Don’t bother entering…it’s already MINE!

I hope you all have a fabulous weekend! The weather is finally supposed to break and get warmer!

An Eating Out Victory!

Last night, Adam and I got taken out to dinner by his mom to Red Lobster. Not generally my favorite seafood place, but I’m a food snot.

red_lobsterI ordered grilled shrimp, scallops, and lobster, no oil, sauce on the side with a salad and baked potato. Quite a good decision, I thought! THEN, the basket came.
Now, most people know that the most dangerous/delicious thing at Red Lobster are the cheesy biscuits…in a basket. Usually, I’ll have one, maybe two of these amazing biscuits, and then all I can think about through the rest of my meal is “I want another biscuit!” Last night, I had NONE. ZERO. ZIP. NADA.

This is quite a victory for me!! We did end up sharing a dessert (apple crisp with ice cream!) but the “no biscuit” thing is HUGE!

Sorry for the lack of pictures, but the atmosphere just wasn’t right…

Be looking out for a cool, food-related, handmade giveaway in the next couple days!

Happy Thoughts

Sorry about the lack of post last night… after spending the day at the hospital (can’t really talk about why, just please send happy thoughts towards Chicago!)… we just went to Olive Garden.
There will be a real post tonight!

The Return of Sushi Friday!

After quite a hiatus, Adam and I finally returned to a tradition: Sushi Friday! We went back to our favorite place, Daruma, and ordered a beautiful spread of our favorites. We started with a non-photographed (mostly because I forgot I had my camera!) beef katsu. It was quite a different kind of appetizer, almost like breaded and sauteed slices of meatloaf. It came with a barbecue-like dipping sauce and hot mustard.

We continued with this, the most beautiful plate of sushi:

So. Very. Delicious.

So. Very. Delicious.

Wondering what all this stuff is? Of course you are! A description:

  • Top row: Philly Roll (salmon, avocado, cream cheese), Haru Maki (Tuna, cucumber, masago, wasabi mayo, red chili mayo), Crazy Roll (Tuna, salmon, yellowtail, avocado, cucumber, lettuce, masago, red chili mayo)
  • Bottom Row: Tamago (Thick cooked egg), Yellowtail, Shrimp, Unagi (freshwater eel)

It was such fun to go back to “our” place. While much of the staff had changed in the last 2 months, the sushi chefs, host, and a couple servers were the same, and the asked where we’d been. It’s like our very own, seafood-instead-of-beer Cheers.

We did decide to head to the mall so I could get my very favorite dessert, Yogen Früz! I got it topped with fresh strawberries and chocolate chips. IT WAS SO GOOD!!!! (Even though it appears so in the picture, there are not legs growing out of my frozen yogurt.)

Gotta love the Früz!

Gotta love the Früz!

I’m beyond happy it’s the weekend, so I’ll leave you with some sparkles and fairy dust for a fantastic weekend!

WOOHOO!!

WOOHOO!!