Monday, August 29, 2011

Meal Planning

If you come over to our house on any given week, you will find our weekly meal plan taped to the fridge. I use a template from the The Project Girl that I love, but she has a ton of different formats and categories from planners, budgets, calendars, meal plans if any others strike your fancy. 

I love to sit down on Sunday afternoons in sweat pants, pour through cookbooks, and get my thoughts organized for the week ahead.  Somehow, this orderly task is therapeutic recovery after a freelanced weekend.

Moreover, I've found that planning our meals ultimately helps me cut down on cost and time spent grocery shopping.  If I go the store without a dinner plan or grocery list in mind, I feel like I spend an hour wandering around aimlessly and putting things in my cart I don't end up using.  Click this link for a neat post from Iowa Girl Eats on how she meal plans and grocery shops.

Also, if I have a lot of time on Sunday afternoons, sometimes I'll get started on prep work for week night... just to make it that much easier after we get in from a long day of work, errands, and the gym.  Tonight, I'm going to the gym and then have a Junior League commitment so I don't expect to get home until 7:00 or 7:30.  Thankfully, yesterday, I was able to able to go ahead and make dinner for tonight, so all I have to do tonight is pop it in the oven while I'm in the shower.  Easy peasy!

Do you do anything like this or have any meal planning tips you use? 

Can you believe this week will be September??

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Asian Roasted Broccolli

Lash and I both love roasted broccolli, and I got a lot of feedback on how many of you also love it too!  It's a weekly staple in our mean plans and I never seem to grow tired of the nutty crunch and caramlized flavor. 

Last night, I was inspired by Beth to switch it up and roast it with Asian flavors.  It was wonderful!

{via Beth}

Asian Roasted Broccoli

3-4 cups of broccoli florets
2-3 tablesppons chili-garlic paste
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons soy
2-3 tablespons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon garlic

Mix marinate together in a large bowl and toss broccoli to coast. 
Roast at 425 degrees on a sheet pan for 20-25 minutes.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

I just stole chicken.

Not really.

But I feel like it.

Do you subscribe to Earth Fare's "Welcome Home Savings"?  You should.  Every week, they offer great deals like free produce, $ off items, or fun other savings.  I don't shop a lot at Earthfare because it is too expensive, but I always look forward to this coupon as Publix also accepts it as a competitors coupon and matches the price.

This morning I wanted to jump out of my chair when I was this deal, and went straight after work to get some for dinner tonight.

Without the coupons, the chicken (at a steep $5.69/lb regular) would have retailed for $29.47!

But using Lash's student discount (valid only on Wednesdays at EF) and one other chicken coupon I had, we got 5.18 lbs (8 big breasts) of chicken for $4.64.

That's a lot of chicken!  But I'm so excited to have a full freezer though, especially with the busy fall ahead of us!  I know what's on our menu for the coming weeks...

Seriously, go to Earthfare this week!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A Final Fling

As I've blogged about probably too much, Lash started back to medical school today.  While a very small part of me is looking forward to getting into a more normal and consistent routine, I am truly sadden to see this blissful summer end.

Our newlywed summer has been the most fun summer of my entire life.

Knowing this transition would not be the most welcomed period, we decided to jet off for one last hoorah before we had to say hello to our new reality.

In our planning and preparation for this trip, it was like the stars aligned for Atlanta.  On Lash's bucket list was going to a Braves game, and wouldn't you know, a Groupon popped across my email soon after we decided to rendezvous.  One week later, we also scored a deal on a perfect hotel from Jetsetter.  It was meant to be!

After easy travels Friday, we got situated, enjoy a cocktail, and took the public transportation to the game...  Let me tell you, the public transportation was an adventure in and of itself, but it certainly made the night both memorable and easy that we did not having to fight the infamous Atlanta traffic.

Our Groupon seats had us in the front row of the third section with access to an air conditioned breezeway with great vendors and clean restrooms.  I truly did not know what to expect from our seats, but this was quite an exciting surprise!  The game was a lot of fun!

Saturday morning, we enjoyed a lazy morning before walking around Buckhead for a good while.  We ventured to lunch at FLIP burger per the recommendation of Mary, and it was a hit!!  A self proclaimed burger "boutique", FLIP burger takes a very modern, refined take on an American classic.  I would definitely recommend it.

I had "the local" - grass- fed beef, farm lettuce, heirloom tomato, grilled vidalia onion, chow- chow, local cheese and coca cola ketchup.  Lash had the "mushroom + swiss" - sauteed mushrooms, swiss cheese foam, caramelized onions, and horseradish mayo ... with a side of onion rings which were divine.

*P.S. Want to know something that blows my mind?  My husband doesn't really like ketchup.  I don't understand.  I could eat ketchup with a spoon.

Following a leisurely lunch, we walked a little more, and ultimately decided to head back to the hotel to enjoy the afternoon by the pool.  It was so relaxing, and I'm so glad we just enjoyed the day and didn't feel any pressure to sight see or do anything we really didn't want to do.

That evening, we had a fabulous dinner at Bistro Niko.  We both could not get over how similar the restaurant was to Charleston's Rue de Jean.  From the service, atmosphere, cocktails, and cuisine, it was all wonderful! 

I didn't take any photos of our cuisine (split mussels, ribeye for Lash, veal for me), though I did manage to take this awkward solo shot for some girlfriends... you know....  A special occasion called for a Kir Royale in my book! :)

Per our server's recommendation, we ended the evening a night cap at Whiskey Blue, on top of the W hotel.  An outdoor patio featured a stunning view of downtown Atlanta that was gorgeous and the perfect end to the evening!

As if we had not eaten our way through Atlanta the day before, prior to hitting the road back to Charleston, we met up with dear friends for brunch at Babette's in Virginia Highlands-- what an adorable part of Atlanta!  My friend, Anna, said that is reminds her of a sophisticated and grown up version of Byrnes Down, and I have to agree.

All in all, it was a fabulous trip, and I'm especially thankful we made it a priority to do something fun together before the library locks us down.  

Now I just have to work on the actual transition part....

His and Hers

Monday, August 22, 2011

All Eyes Are On You,


With nervous anticipation, I find myself checking the weather hourly.  Will we be boarding up our home and evacuating Friday?

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

I'm a planner.

I plan, plan, plan.

I plan meals every Sunday for the week in advance. I plan what days to go to the store, what days to run errands, what days to clean, and what to wear.  I like to know all the details... the logistics... and sometimes the thoughts behind the details and logistics. 

It probably comes as no shock that I'm not the biggest fan of surprises and that I get serious anxiety when I don't know what the plan is. 

To me, failure to plan = plan to fail.

Lash and I could not be more opposite in this regard.  He is so happy-go- lucky, go- with- the- flow, it- will- all- work- out, chill.  Me? Ha!

One of the biggest lessons I'm learning very early in our marriage is that sometimes I just need to let things play out.  Not be so concerned with to- do lists, agendas, or even control.

This is very hard for me, yet this will be an invaluable, maybe even required, attribute as a doctor's wife ... where the vast unknown looms in every aspect of our very future. 

I can't say this will be the smoothest road, but I am trying to let my hair down, "relax, and let Me lead you."

Monday, August 15, 2011

By the Numbers

  • 10 = K... I'm toying with the idea of training for and running one this fall.  I'm no where near the shape to do it, but I love the idea of setting this goal and accomplishing it. 
  • 9 = times I've promised a recap of our wedding reception... I'll get there... but here's the calm before, getting dressed, and ceremony for you new followers (hi!!)
  • 8 = months its seemed like since I last saw my sister   ... that's an exaggeration, but it feels like it!
  • 7 = days left of "summer" without Medical School ... the glass is half-full here people!
  • 6 = important, adult decisions on my to- do list that I am putting off with this post #oops ... priorities
  • 5 = more items to knock off on our bucket list
  • 4 = ingredients in my new favorite side dish: saute shelled, boiled edamame in sesame oil with minced ginger and soy ...  divine, and so easy
  • 3 = out of the twelve upcoming weekends this fall we don't have plans for.  ...  ouch
  • 2 = books finished this past week ... one and two  were both great beach reads
  • 1 = getaway weekend coming up, just the two of us. I can't wait!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Friday Find

 What fun it was meeting everyone last night at Social! I just hate I had to jet to dinner so early that I couldn't stay.. The Charleston blogging crowd is truly a great community of girls, I feel like when I left last night I had known these girls for much, much longer than an hour. I'm already looking forward to the next gathering!

I'm so excited about this Friday find!  Thanks to a Living Social deal I purchased a few weeks back, I got the above dress that retails for $98 for $9.99! I think the cut, color, and style will transition well from a summer look with wedges and colorful accessories to fall with boots and a cropped jacket. I love it, and can't wait for it to get here!

I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011


- I'm sorry this blog has been subject to much neglect during this summer, but once we get back in the fall routine, I hope to devote more of my time and energy back in. I appreciate you all sticking with me and supporting us during this exciting time!

- The countdown is on until medical school begins again, and I am not sure I am mentally ready to face our upcoming reality.  This has been the best summer of my life, and I am not ready to end this newlywed bliss by giving my husband up to the library. 

- Change is a good thing, but change is hard.

- Let me tell you- one thing I do need to change after this summer though is my portion size and exercise regime!  Though people warned us about the marital "freshman fifteen,"  I still have managed to gain a few l.b.s post wedding!  Thankfully, I am hardly at 1/3 of that 15, but it still has got to go!

- I got up extra early today to go by Harris Teeter before work to take advantage of the Super Double deals.  I'm pretty sure when my alarm went off at 6:30, Lash was convinced he married one crazy girl.  But, I got houshold staples that retailed for $52.32, but with coupons was $19.71!  Even if I was a little embarassed to be that girl at 7 am, I still think the trip is worth it. 

What dirty laundry to you have to air this Wednesday?

Charleston Bloggers

Hope to see you there!


Thursday, August 4, 2011

Momma's Girl

Lash is going out of town tonight, and instead of spending the night at home alone, I have convinced my mom to come spend the night with me!!

I can't wait for a girly night of mother- daughter time, going to dinner here, enjoying some wine, and ordering wedding pictures.

What a way to start the weekend early! 

Monday, August 1, 2011

Wknd Review and Decor

Happy Monday, folks.  After going to the gym and cooking dinner, I plan on spending the rest of the evening watching Shark Week, indulging in a glass of red, and ironing.  Which of these three don't below? ha!

Lash and I had such a fun weekend in town.  We crossed off all of the weekending plans, except going to Trader Joes, but that's because I went grocery shopping for the week on Saturday morning without thinking that I wanted to go!  Oy vey..

We went to Midtown Friday night, which was so fun, because I got to meet Ashton and Christina!  I totally was the stalker reader, saying "Hi I'm Mary Loyal, I follow your blog..." but thankfully they both didn't think I was too crazy :)  It is so fun putting faces to names.  I am truly in love with the blogging community.

Saturday, we started the day at Sullivans with a painkiller and holy moly, what a way to start the day!
We had the best time playing ladder golf, reading, and basting in the sun until this. . . but, I do love watching a summer storm roll in.

Sunday was relaxing and low key, involving a walk in the torturous heat, church, and shredded pork tacos for dinner.  Why do weekends fly by so fast??  I am getting depressed that Lash goes back to school so soon, but trying to keep the glass half full!!

Ok y'all.

I need a little design help.  I bought this pillow for our master bedroom, in an attempt to find something that ties in the coral and blues of our bedroom.

It's from Pottery Barn, and I really like it, but it is an outdoor pillow, and thus made of a not-so-soft outdoor canvas material. As much as I like the design, I still have a hard time getting over that it is an outdoor pillow, and I'm using it inside.  Is that weird?  Also, with the little boudoir pillow we have on the bed, it covers up the prettiest part of the pillow.  Is it worth it to keep it?

The room has changed a little bit since this photo but here's a shot of the rug so you can see the colors we are working with.

I'm quickly figuring out that a home is constantly a work in progress!!