Thursday, August 10, 2017

Crockpot Shredded chicken

After a long hiatus of cooking, I am slowly trying to enjoy it again.  It's been a minute since I've wanted to cook, or actually enjoy it.  I've been dealing with how to cook meals quickly or have them ready to go when I'm hungry (so I don't spend time thinking about it and decide to go out for fastfood).  So after shopping for kombucha (don't even talk to me about making my own - that's another story) I bought some skinless chicken thighs thinking I could make something with it.

A quick search on Pinterest and I found a crockpot recipe for shredded chicken.  I have also been looking for recipes to make in the crockpot because it is too darn hot to cook.  Our new place has a tiny kitchen with poor ventilation and it's like a sauna in there right now.   The plus of this recipe is, that you make some tortilla soup too.  A favourite in our house.  

So let's get cooking!

4 skinless chicken thighs
15oz can of tomatoes or 2 cups of salsa
Packet of taco seasoning

How to:
Place tomatoes/salsa in the crockpot.
Empty the seasoning and stir.
No water is needed because the seasoning with blend nicely with the tomatoes/salsa.
Place chicken over the mix.
Cook on high 3-5 hours or low for 4-6 hours.

In case you a lover of Sriracha like we are, you should definately try finding the Huy Fong Sriracha Diced Tomatoes.  We are Sriracha purists here, so there is only one, Huy Fong.  It was a bit hot (my partner has a delicate stomach) so added a bit of lemon juice to mellow it out.  


Stay hungry my friend!

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Bubble bubble toil.... get the picture.  I have just returned from a whirlwinded week.  My head is percolating with ideas and things to do.  For a moment (sidebar: I will now always think of Minnesota and Pangea whenever I say this statement or even hear the song, thank you Muriel) this morning I was sad.   Arriving home in the dark of night concealed and wrapped me in the still warm and fuzzy feelings I left Minneapolis with.  I can do anything.  I can write anything.  I can perform everything.  But as the early morning sunshine broke through the blinds and weaved its way between the fibers of the curtains, reality set in.  I am home.  My own bed, not quite as cozy as the Sheraton's was.  Ok, ok, let's continue the morning practise I developed over the week. Hup-2-3-4. Let's do some Suzuki style plies. 10 count. 20 count.  I can hear Izumi voice.  Why-o, why-o.  There is Linda.  I can feel Dora's energy as she runs around during the warm-ups...the rest of class making oddly shaped circles.

Wait? What?  Who am I kidding?  I have to unpack.  I have to clean and bring order to the house and its various states of cleanliness it is in (sidebar: I'm kind of a neat freak, so it was probably fine, but I needed to scrub something).  Gotta wake up and drop my husband off at the Metro station. I get into my car, which is covered in a light layer of dust that shows the remnants of an light rain from earlier this week.  The early morning ride. I return home, grab my computer and return to my routine from before the workshop.  I start over-researching ideas and themes, I am lost down a deep deep Pinterest hole of oblivion.  My computer crashes.  It's noon already.  I am still in my pajamas, the house is no cleaner, but thankfully after calls from family with happy wishes for me and tales of their recent adventures, I have found a renewed hope for where to go now.

Now a week later, it seems like Minneapolis was a lifetime ago  What did I do?  What did I learn? What was I excited to go and create?  Darnit.  Momentum lost again.  Pinterest hole of despair here I come.  Here, at home, I have a list of things I want to do, but fear has crept in again.  Ideas for scripts and stories bounce around in my head.  A zillion tabs are opened on my computer, each pointing to an idea or thought I'd like to try, a grant I'd like to write.  Wait, how do you write a grant?  Multi-tasking trying to be everything.  What to do when you've discovered your life is hopeless.  Mid-life crisis.  I think that's what they call it. Figuring things out one tab at a time.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Creamy Salad Dressing

In an attempt to eat more salad, I have to eat what I like.  Forget tangy vinaigrette, don't get me wrong I love that tangy taste, but I then still feel like I'm eating healthy.  The thick creamy dressing in moderation works, especially if it tricks me into eating more salad, I'll give it a try.

I don't really keep salad dressing in the house, because I don't want to keep that temptation close by, and I know I'm way to lazy to head out to the grocery store just so I can eat salad.  I threw this recipe together, with items I already had.

1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup labne (can use sour cream)
1/4 cup olive oil
3 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tbsp Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp milk
1 tbsp Italian seasoning
Garlic salt

Whisk together all ingredients.

To change the consistency, add 1 tbsp of milk at a time, until you reach the desired thickness.

Stay Healthy my friend!

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Not a fan of bugs

Aloha peanuts! (sorry, testing out words).

I have been in Hawaii for 11 days now and I am slowly getting used to the island.  The thing I cannot get used to are the bugs.  After living sans bugs in Los Angeles, it's expected to find creepy crawlies in a tropical climate.  But my house is filled with ants.  I don't like bugs (the snail incident of 2014 was a doozy).  Yes I know they are helpful and have a purpose in the whole food chain process and all, but not crawling all over my counter tops and now I am a clean freak!  Constantly wiping and scrubbing I have become neurotic and annoying.

Although disgusted at the tiny creatures, I am at the same time fascinated.  I sit and watch as they collect in a lump and then move on their merry way.  But how do they know where they are going?

Aside from the chemical route, hello RAID!, I've tried ant traps, which seems a bit more humane, and after having an unexpected reaction to the ant poisoning left by the previous owners, I decide to search out a natural alternatives.

After doing an online search, I found that the number one option that came up most often was Borax.
It's 100% natural, so it must work.  Directions were simple, mix 1 cup of water, 1/2 cup sugar, and 2 tablespoons of Borax.  Soak some cotton balls, then leave them where the ants hang out.  I really wasn't a fan of this.  It just felt messy to me and if I left the windows and doors open, the breeze would push those cotton balls around.

Dr. Bronner's Peppermint soap
Next up was Dr. Bronner's Peppermint soap.  Since I had some on hand, this one was worth a try.  I bought a spray bottle and added 1/4 cup of soap and added water.  I would spray downs the walls and kitchen counters leaving the apartment smelling delicious.  After spraying the baseboards and windows at least twice a day, ants were gone within a week.  After that, I would spray the walls down at least once a week so the little buggers wouldn't come back.

Other options that I didn't try

Essential Oils
When ants are out looking for food, they
leave behind them a pheromone trail, so other ants can follow their path.  This works because it masks the scent trails the ants leave and they can't find their way back home.
1/4 cup water, 1/4 cup vodka and 15 drops peppermint essential oil, 15 drops tea tree essential oil. Pour all into a spray bottle.  Shake, then spray around baseboards and anywhere ants can be found. Use caution when spraying on food surfaces if you're using tea tree oil.  Spray until ants are gone.

Fill a spray bottle with 1/4 cup of vinegar (white or apple cider) and some essential oil (30 drops of one oil) and water.  Shake the spray bottle and spray around baseboards and really anywhere you've seen ants.

Stay Healthy my Friend!

Friday, February 3, 2017

Early mornings

It is 4 am.  Again and I am awake.  Again.  Normally, I try to write stories in my head.  Compose my next great opus and then once I fall asleep I vow to remember it when I wake in a few hours.  Then, 6 am rolls around and every line is gone.  I can't remember a thing.
This morning I recited the same sentence over and over.  Not in an attempt to remember it, but trying to move past it, create more of a story.  "Rooster!  Get the gun!"  That's it.  I try to imagine the rest of the story and can't see it.
This morning I finally decided to actually sit down and write what was going on in my head.  I chose to use my computer thinking it would be quicker.  Of course, this morning my computer chose to not work, so all the brilliance I wanted to write got lost in frustration of waiting for the internet to work and Chrome to begin responding.  Yes, I could've just written in my notebook, but my mind and ideas move much too quickly for my pen, I am much more nimble on the keys.  When I write on paper, I feel stifled by the ink, but on the computer my fingers have a mind of their own and it doesn't even feel like I am really writing.  My hands know what to type and all I have to do is read it.  I've never thought about it before, but as I read it, it seems like an absurd thing to say.
I am  still trying to figure out a writing routine.  I found a fabulous online program that helps you get writing.  I posted it in my Google calendar for a Monday start.   That was weeks, oh my, months ago. I can't recall what my original start date was, as by the time I reach Friday I realize I haven't written, so I move the start date to the following Monday.  This wouldn't be so bad if it was only a couple week class, but this is a 12-week program, had I started, I'd be done by now.
So consider this a writing exercise.  Gibberish.  Almost of stream of consciousness, but that would imply free flowing words, which this is not.  I edit as I go. Making correction and choosing the right words so the sentences will make sense.  The only thing that probably doesn't make sense is the whole objective of this post.
What was I saying?  I do go on sometimes, but eventually remember the question that I began with and then answer the query in a simple sentences instead of blathering this has become.
"Rooster! Get the gun!"  Who is this Rooster character and who is yelling?  Why is a gun needed?   After considering this as the first sentence for the play, I consider myself brilliant, but then come to the realization that it's all I've got.  I know who these characters are, but I don't yet know how they move in the world.  I know the overall story I would like to tell and for what purpose.  I know the venue that it is being written for, so of course my producer and director's hat are subconsciously guiding where and how these characters can move and when they can move.  But what I need now is the complete story.  A beginning, middle and end.  A conflict along with an epic lesson that must be learned.
Victory!  The mister has finally experienced my pain of missing items from move.  I can now go on with life.

Aloha bitches!