Friday, February 27, 2015

High Five for Friday 2.27.15

Good Morning,

Another week has passed which means we are one week closer to going home and let me tell you guys the count down is on, I feel like as the days pass my home sickness gets worse and worse. Not because they are having such fantastic weather at home, because they got a ton of snow yesterday but because I want to be at home. Having said that the weather here hasn't been all that fantastic, as one would expect during winter.

So what good things happened this week? Lets chat about them shall we?

1. Sunday's Rare Weather

Sunday the weather was absolutely AMAZING! They were calling for it to be warm but when it actually almost reached 50 I couldn't have been happier! Jason and I got up in the morning and I made my way over to the mall to do some birthday shopping and basically just get out of the apartment and enjoy the weather! Jason ended up meeting me there as he generally doesn't care to shop with me, we got a Starbucks and went for a walk by the water. It was just such a gorgeous day and the weather was what we wait for after every winter! I wish it could have lasted.

Who knew the Hudson even froze? Apparently its quite rare!

2. Sunday Afternoon

It may be a little cliche but Jason only has Sunday's off and I really look forward to our one day together. When we got back from our outing we laid around the apartment in our sweats and Jason made an amazing dinner. Naturally I cook dinner all week but Jason likes to cook and is really good at it. I know its nothing special, a day at home but with Jason's work schedule we really don't get a lot of time together and so I love those days. Dinner was amazing, I didn't have to watch the Daytona 500 and basically it was perfect! Sorry to all you NASCAR fans.. I just can't.

3. Rachael Ray Swag

As I mentioned in yesterdays post Tanya and I went to a taping of the Rachael Ray show on Wednesday and we were so fortunate to get a bunch of treats from the show! I haven't used them yet but I definitely plan to.

4. Target Patio Furniture!

Target has their patio furniture out and what does that mean... THE END IS NEAR!!!!!! Summer is coming! Good luck prying me out of the South next winter, I swear it will be kicking and screaming. I was so excited to see patio furniture, Barbecues and lanterns! I cannot wait for hot weather!!

5. Subway

No, not the one you ride on. Last night Jason and I went over to the mall because we had a few things we wanted to look at and decided we would grab dinner there. I was more than fine with this on account that I have been dying for a Subway sandwich. Weird I know but when we travel majority of the time we grab Subway to eat in the truck and I love it. Sadly we haven't done much traveling lately and there isn't a convenient Subway stop on the way back here from our house so I don't know the last time we had it. Jason ended up getting something he didn't like at all which sucked by my sub was exactly what I had hoped it would be and that is always amazing. Sometimes you just need a Subway sandwich guys!

I hope you guys had a great week, next week the weather is looking to warm up significantly and I cant tell you how thrilled I am about that! One day is actually suppose to be 50 and right about now that sounds heavenly! Have a great weekend!!!

As always thank you so much for stopping by!!

This week I am linking up with:

and these lovely ladies!!

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Thursday, February 26, 2015

Rachael Ray Show

Hi Guys,

So as you know yesterday Tanya and I went to a taping of the Rachael Ray show! We were really excited especially after seeing Live with Kelly and Michael two weeks ago! We were aware that they gave out a few extra tickets in case some people didn't show, as they didn't want to have empty seats but when we arrived and there was a HUGE line I was a little worried. I won't lie though, the peanut butter hot chocolate we stopped for on the way might have been worth missing the show.

We got in line and were really hoping we wouldn't be turned away. To our surprise people continued to show up, there was a good 25-30 people in the line behind us and I could just not imagine that they gave out that many extra tickets. To our surprise we got in along with the 4 people behind us and that was it! I honestly couldn't believe they gave out that many extra tickets, people traveled from all over the US, from different states to be there and to be turned away. I can see giving out maybe 10 extra tickets but 25?

While standing in line we were asked to fill out a waiver and got our ticket. We entered the building, handed in our waiver and had our ticket color coated. They gave you one of three colors, I have absolutely no idea if it was random, according to when you got your ticket or what. It definitely had nothing to do with where you were in line. We went through security and all of that and were ushered into a holding room. Guys.. smallest room ever! They were offering snacks and water but good luck getting to them.. no kidding. They had some shirts for sale as well but I couldn't bring myself to spend $30.00!

While we were waiting they had their entertainment guy come out and lay down the rules, Joey Kola. Guys.. HE IS HILARIOUS! He totally made the show, he is a stand up comedian who basically interacts with the audience before and after the show, as well as in between taping segments.

They told us they would call us by the color on our ticket to enter the studio and we were so lucky that our color was called first. Sadly they were EXTREMELY strict that no pictures were allowed to be taken, no phones on at all, no gum chewing.. weird. It wasn't even live! I get that they don't want people taking pictures during filming I guess although we were allowed to do so at Kelly and Michael, but we couldn't have taken pictures before or after the show? I mean come on!!

Everyone was seated and Joey Kola entertained. He told us that the show we were filming that day would air sometime in April but they didn't know when - umm really? So apparently we just have to watch for the guests that were on.

So Rachael had Curtis Stone as her co-host which was great, he is often on the show and not bad to look at by any means. But let me tell you.. they didn't even acknowledge the audience. I went into the show thinking Rachael Ray was super funny and down to earth.. guys... not even a little bit! First of all we couldn't even see the taping because there were so many cameras and camera men in front of them. Literally we basically watched the entire show on the monitor in front of us. This was not at all what I thought.

Then the first break came and I really thought they would address the audience, or at least acknowledge them. Negative. When we went to Michael and Kelly and they couldn't get enough of the audience during commercial breaks. They were taking pictures and signing stuff, and Rachael Ray didn't even look towards the audience. Thank god for Joey Kola or it would have been some silent breaks.

The first guest other than Curtis was Katie Lee from the Saturday Food Network show The Kitchen. I have seen this show a couple of times and really like it. Katie was there to demonstrate with a few kitchen tools, a shot glass mold, a ravioli making rolling pin and ice cream sandwich presses. We were so excited when they announced we would be going home with all of them!

I was pretty interested in the shot glass mold, you can make candy ones, cookie ones and put milk in them. It can go in the oven or the freezer. 

We don't eat a lot of ice cream but hey, we live in the south.. I could be persuaded! 

I've never made fresh ravioli but I think I might just give it a try now. 

Its not a given that people go home with gifts from every show so we were extremely thankful. They handed out the swag at the end of the show. 

They also brought out Tiffany Thiessen you know.. Kelly Kapowski from Safe by the Bell! Haha when I told Jason she was on the show he wrote back and said "OMG you met Kelly Kapowski" haha! I didn't realize that she was starting her own cooking show, Dinner at Tiffani's. Not sure why they are spelling her name with an I for the show but there you have it. I was excited to see her as I have watched her on many shows over the years, and she is still as gorgeous as ever and totally rocking that pregnant glow! 

At this point though the only time any guest was acknowledging the audience was to wave as they walked off stage, even though there were breaks. Not to mention we were almost done the taping and Rachael Ray herself had barely looked our way! I hate to say it because I know how fortunate we were to go but guys she was kind of awful. She was constantly snapping at her staff on breaks, she didn't interact with the audience at all and basically if the cameras weren't rolling she looked completely miserable. I was completely shocked. 

When the show was over she came out and basically said, hope we put on a good show for you.. we are going to take a picture with the audience. They stood in the audience for a minute for a photo and left. She didn't say thank you for coming, shake anyone's hand, offer to sign anything or take a picture.. nothing! I couldn't believe it. I felt that she didn't appreciate the fact that people traveled and stood in the cold to see her show, what is her show without an audience? They sent an email to ticket holders the day before the show asking them to bring non-perishables for her 9 million meals program and when we were there they asked for cash donations, people donated and not a thank you for their contributions.. seriously.. nothing. 

After we left the studio Tanya and I talked about how we couldn't believe how unappreciative and rude she seemed. I left there with a completely different outlook on her and her show that's for sure. 

When I got home I was talking to Barb telling her all about it and she said I should look up reviews on the show, which truthfully had never crossed my mind before. I did just that when I got off the phone with her only to find 90% of people who wrote reviews for the show said the exact same thing!!! She didn't care about the audience, she was rude and nasty to her staff, she looked nasty and miserable as soon as the cameras went off. Crazy!

All in all I am very grateful for the experience of being at a taping and the gifts we got. I am sad that her personality isn't at all what I would have expected and I will say I wouldn't go back to another taping of her show. There are so many shows to be seen in the city and most of them offer free tickets, I honestly wouldn't waste your time with this particular show. That may sound harsh but its completely true. 

I hope you guys are having a great week, I am starting to feel a little better today as I actually got some sleep last night. I am hoping to feel much better tomorrow!! 

Thank you as always for taking the time out of your day to stop by, I have been getting some fabulous comments around here lately from you guys and I absolutely LOVE it, so thank you for taking the time.  

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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Winter Cold & Lack of Planning!

Hi guys,

My apologies for a lack of post today, I have been sick with a cold all week and basically just want to lay on the couch and eat chicken noodle soup.. which is precisely what I have done up until today. As you know Tanya and I went to a taping of Rachel Ray today, unfortunately the show was not live and therefore it will not air until April. Stay tuned as I will have a post up tomorrow most likely about the experience.

Jason's ticked because Raleigh is suppose to get 8-12 inches of snow tomorrow and naturally we are not there, I am all for leaving tonight to make it in time but I don't think that's going to happen. As much as I hate winter I would give anything to go home. I cant help but laugh, literally where ever Jason has been for the last two years it doesn't snow. Last year we were at home and Jason traveled a lot and so it snowed at home but not where he was, the last year we were in Alaska we barely got any snow and this year we are getting a lot more cold than snow. Poor guy, he just loves snow and winter and he feels like hes getting screwed.

I really have nothing else guys, my apologies. I feel like absolute crap and haven't been getting any sleep at all therefore I feel like for the most part I'm not making much sense.. haha not much different from usual I suppose. Tomorrow I plan to wake up and be cured of this wretched cold, its going to happen.. I just know it.

I hope you guys are having a great week, check back tomorrow for my thoughts on Rachael Ray, I think you will be surprised.

Have a great night!

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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Delicious Banana Bread!

Good Morning!!

I have been wanting some banana bread for quite some time now and while ago I found a few recipes but for some reason never got around to making it. I decided last week enough screwing around I was going to see what I needed and do some baking!

I made sure I had all the stuff I needed including some super ripe bananas and Saturday afternoon while watching it snow I got my bake on! I had never tried the recipe before but I thought I would take pictures and plan to blog about it hoping it turned out good and I was honestly beyond impressed! The recipe was super easy and the bread is super delicious, I also found that the bread didn't dry out the next day or anything which is an added bonus.

You will need:

2 Cups All Purpose Flour 
1 Cup White Sugar
1 Teaspoon Salt
1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1/2 Cup Softened Butter
3 Ripe Bananas
2 Large Eggs
1 Teaspoon Vanilla
1 Tablespoon Milk

Preheat Oven to 325

Keep in mind everyone's oven is different and if you usually have to make adjustment to temperature than definitely do that. 

When I am baking I like to get out all of the ingredients I will need ahead of time that way it is easy to grab and as I use it I put it away so the clean up at the end doesn't seem to daunting. You want to begin by adding all of your dry ingredients to a bowl.

Once all of your dry ingredients are in your bowl, put it aside and get out another bowl. I unpeeled my 3 ripe bananas and mashed them up in a smaller bowl using a fork. You can do this however you feel comfortable, they don't need to be liquefied so no equipment is necessary.  

You may not want to make more dishes than necessary but I also always crack my eggs in a separate bowl just in case. You don't want to ruin your whole mixture with a bad egg. Ha!

Make sure your dry ingredients are thoroughly mixed, and in your separate bowl you wet ingredients are thoroughly mixed, now you will combine the two. 

Try not to over mix the batter, just make sure everything is combined well and there is no flour stuck at the bottom and you should be good to go. I lightly buttered my loaf pan, I don't generally have cooking spray on hand but if you do that will work just fine as well. 

Once your loaf pan is read add your batter, it should fill the loaf pan approximately half way. I used a regular load pan found at Target. 

The recipe says to bake your bread for 60-70 minutes, I found that to be a long time but I set my timer for 60 minutes and started checking on with (through the oven window about 50 minutes in). I ended up cooking my bread for about 65 minutes. 

The bread looked soo good, and the apartment smelled absolutely AMAZING!

I let the bread cool for about a half hour before turning it over and it dropped right out of the pan, no issues at all. 

I am super happy with this bread, I will definitely be adding this recipe to my recipe book to make sure I use it again. Jason has been loving it as well, and requested I make a loaf for him to take to work, so I guess I need to get some more bananas. 

I really enjoy baking and don't know why I go so long without doing it, probably because I don't want to eat it! 

I hope you guys enjoy this recipe, let me know if you give it a try and how it turns out!! 

As always thank you for stopping by and happy baking!! 

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Monday, February 23, 2015

Interpreting British

Good Morning!

As you all know I follow quite a few beauty bloggers and their vlogs! I'm not sure why most of the ones I follow live in England I guess I just haven't come across in the State or Canada, minus Kate from the Small Things blog or ones that I enjoy.

In the last year I have really gotten into makeup, different kinds of makeup and makeup application. I so enjoy trying new products, especially when they come from recommendations or reviews from others. Its interesting to see what works for people and why, the comparison of high end to drug store products and so on.

Anyways in all my beauty vlog watching I have learned that although the British speak English obviously they tend to use a lot of different words than we do. Some I cant help but giggle about and so I started keeping a list on my phone of all the things we say different and thought I might share.

Obviously every tends to speak differently, state to state, country to country so some of these may not seem all that surprising.. or maybe they will.

  • Q Tip - Cotton bud. As you can see this would make complete sense, maybe they don't have the brand "Q Tip" there. If we didn't have the brand, what would you call it?
  • Dollar - Pound/Quid. Apparently they use the word Pound and Quid interchangeably as they mean the same thing. Here I suppose we may call it a dollar or a buck. I cant say I ever say "buck" though when referring to money. 
  • Bobby Pin - Hair grip. Again I'm not sure if its a brand thing, because calling it a hair grip makes perfect sense. 
  • Braid - Platt. You know, braiding your hair. I'm not sure if you're aware but braids are all the rave these days!! Everyone is braiding their hair, and there are a million different kinds of braids, dutch braid, fish tail braid, etc. Who knew?
  • Run in your tights - Ladder in your tights. Again it makes perfect sense, but I cant say I would have ever thought to call it a ladder. Not that I wear tights often. But if you do I recommend the ones from H&M, they are cheap and super strong and sturdy. I love them. 
  • Bad - Rubbish. This one I like, I am going to start using it I swear. How much cooler does it sound to say, "My day was rubbish" rather than "My day was bad" so much better right?
  • Nail Polish - Nail Varnish. 
  • Face Cloth - Flannel. This has nothing to do with the material itself, their face cloths are made of the same things ours are, they just call them something different. 
  • Bumper Cars - Dodge Em's. HA! This one is actually pretty hilarious. 
  • Potato Chips - Crisps. I suppose this is because of the next one...
  • French Fries - Chips. You will find Canadians who say this too. I will say in all of this Canadians and British are much more alike than British and American's... obviously. 
  • Green House - Hot House. You know, where you grow plants in a small specialty building? It makes sense, they are hot. Where did the term Green House come from anyways? Why do we call it that?
  • On Sale - On Offer. Same meaning, different word. I actually prefer "on sale" though.. there is no novelty calling it "on offer". 
  • Cookies - Biscuits. We would call an actual biscuit a biscuit.. like a tea biscuit. I don't know what they call those. However when I Googled the picture below it brought up a few pictures of cookies. 

  • Infinity Scarf - Loop Scarf. Infinity scarf sounds more posh.
  • Elevator - Lift. Makes sense again, why do we call it an elevator? I can see why they would call it a lift, where did elevator come from? Their words seem more simple I suppose, and make more sense.
  • Bar - Pub. We have bar and grills called pubs but we don't ever say "I'm going to the pub", I suppose we could though.   
  • Vacuum - Hoover. I crack up every time I hear one of them say that they have to go and hoover, or the dogs scared of the hoover. Maybe they only have that brand in the England, ya never know!
  • Bill - Note. As in we would say " I found a ten dollar bill in the park today" and they would say "I found a ten pound note in the park today". Interesting. 
  • Parking Lot - Car Park. I would say a parking lot was outside of a restaurant, a parking garage/underground parking is at the mall, but they refer to every kind of parking area as a "car park". 
  • Chat - Chinwag. This one kills me every.single.time. Can you imagine saying "Oh I had a nice little chinwag with so and so today". Haha!!
  • Pillow - Cushion. When I think of cushion I think of the couch cushion you actually sit on, or an outdoor cushion for your outdoor furniture, I cant say I have ever called a pillow a cushion although I am sure some people do. 
  • This and That or Knick Knacks - Bit and Bobs. "I went shopping today and picked up a few bits and bobs", "I was cleaning and found a few bits and bobs out of place". 
  • Car Trunk - Car Boot. This one I will admit is a little weird to me. I first heard it when Essie Button was talking about going to a "car boot sale" and I was like.. huh? Apparently its a large rummage sale where people sell everything out of the trunk of their car. A little strange if you ask me. I also once watched a video where they kept talking about how "the boot was stuck closed with all their shopping loot inside" - they don't always call it a "car boot" sometimes just a "boot". 
  • Friend - Chum. 
  • Shopping Cart - Trolley. 
  • Zucchini - Courguette. This took me awhile to catch on to what they were talking about. 
  • Eggplant - Aubergine. I really don't know why these are called something so completely different and quite obscure if you ask me. I guess that's what they know, they probably thing Zucchini and Eggplant are strange.. maybe they are. 
  • Sausage - Banger. You would know this if you visited an Irish pub as well, you mostly likely will have seen "bangers and mash" (sausages and mashed potatoes) on the menu. 
  •  Cotton Candy - Candy Floss. I like cotton candy better, but you can see where they are coming from with this one as well. 
  • Plastic Wrap - Clingfilm.
  • Tooth Pick - Cocktail Stick. 
  • Baked Potato - Jacket Potato. Haha!
  • Hungry - Peckish. I can see people here saying this as well. I would. 
  • Soda - Pop. We Canadian's call it "pop" too!
  • Take out food - Take away food. "We're ordering take away for dinner!"
  • Line Up - Queue. This one is strange to me.."You wouldn't believe how long the queue is outside the book shop!". 
  • Pouring Rain - Chucking Down Rain. This one is fantastic. From now on if its raining out count on my saying its CHUCKING down rain!
  • Shots (vaccinations) - Jabs. Obviously this sounds more appropriate, basically someone is jabbing you with a sharp object. It should be called "stabs".
  • Talking A Lot - Waffling On. I waffle on all the freakin' time. What can I say, I'm a waffler! Ha! 
So there you have it, its funny that we speak the same language but can have such different words for things. I can see how their words and sayings would make sense, but cant help but wonder how their words came to be and how ours did. I suppose I could do a little research!

Just a bit of a different post I've been waiting to share with you guys!! Thanks for stopping in today!!

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Friday, February 20, 2015

High Five for Friday 2.20.15

Good Morning!!!

Its even colder today... go freakin' figure!! I may choose to venture out somewhere CLOSE so I don't freeze to death but I am making no promises! Guys its been so cold that Niagara Falls has frozen, see HERE.

Anyways I could rant away about the weather as you know but we aren't here to talk about that, we are here to talk about the highlights of my week, so lets just dive in!!

1. The Brownstone Diner for Sunday Breakfast!

Sunday morning Jason and I braved the frigid weather and RIDICULOUS wind to wander over to the Brownstone Diner for breakfast. Everyone has raved about it for quite some time now and sadly we have not made it there until this weekend. I generally don't care to go out for breakfast as I don't really like much for breakfast food, but I have been wanting a big ol' fluffy waffle for quite some time. We went over and waited about a half hour for a table, but the food was fantastic! I had basically an apple pie waffle and it was too good! Jason had french toast, an omelet, home fries.. haha.

2. Reading in bed with my love. 

I love to read, no secret there. I pretty much read all the time, but I enjoy getting in bed and ending my night with some reading. I won't like it never ends up being 20 minutes just to settle my mind before going to sleep and I often find myself with a little book light still going at 2:00am. Anyways Jason always thought it was so weird how into books I got, typical nonreader. But when we were in Alaska he loved the state and everything about it so much that I bought him a bunch of Alaska books and he would actually read in bed at night. Sadly he trailed off of it, but recently I borrowed some books from Tanya and one of them was of an Alaska show that we LOVED, but in book form and Jason literally comes home at night from work excited to get in bed and read. I cant recommend the book of DVD's enough, if you are interested you can check them out HERE. Anyways, I quite enjoy getting in bed at night and both of us lay there reading.. it makes my heart smile. 

3. I got new boots!! 

I have been needing a pair of plain flat black boots for quite sometime now and I am serious about the need part, every girl should have a pair of casual shoes and in the last 6 months there are countless times where I wished I had some. So for Valentine's day Jason suggested a good gift would be my boots! I knew the ones I wanted because I saw them at home last year and wished I had bought them ever since. I was pretty excited when they arrived this week but again I second guessed myself if they were PERFECT. Tanya and I went into the city boot shopping once more to make sure and although I found a pair of brown boots that I LOVE LOVE LOVE, I decided to keep these one. I am really happy with them. 

I don't usually wear my shoes on the carpet but they are new, and I had to take a picture of you guys. 

Did you see my blog post on Wednesday about the Chicken Pot Pies I made? If not click HERE to check it out. I was skeptical about trying this new recipe and it turned out better than I could have expected which is always a nice surprise and makes the dinner all that much better! Its a quick and easy meals and actually reheats the next day really well, I highly recommend giving it a try, I mean seriously... look how good it looks!

5. TV Show Madness!!!

As you know Tanya and I went to a taping of Live with Michael and Kelly, and truth be told I don't know why we never tried to attend tapings when we lived here 4 years ago or so far living here this time. We had such a great time at Michael and Kelly we talked about trying to get tickets to other shows. Well this week Tanya got us tickets to Rachel Ray next Wednesday which I am so thrilled about and The Chew on her birthday (March 5th!) we are sooooo excited!!! Michael and Kelly was such a great experience I cannot wait to see both these shows filmed live!! Stay tuned for a blog post on each!!

I hope you guys have had a great week, its definitely been a frigid one. We are suppose to get a bunch of snow tomorrow (I say a bunch but any snow to me is too much) and then Sunday the temperature is suppose to rise significantly but its suppose to rain all day so I don't think my weekend will be overly exciting. 

Have a great weekend!!!

This week I am linking up with:

And these lovely ladies...

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Thursday, February 19, 2015

Browser Hijacking? Say Wha?

Good Afternoon,

I hope you guys are staying warm out there is this NASTY weather people are calling winter.. I prefer to refer to it as a big giant pain in the ass.

Seriously though?

I would rant about how much I want to go home, and may very well be on a plane at this point but they are getting the same cold, in the south.. what the hell? Winter is just depressing, I know I pretty much complain about it here daily but good lord why won't it go away. 

Yesterday Tanya and I went into the city, I got all bundled up to walk to the PATH station so I didn't freeze, then you get to the subway and its literally sweltering so I strip down (appropriately.. hat, gloves.) and wait to get on the subway which is going to be so full with people you are going to sweat even more! Then you get off the subway and go outside and you freeze, worse now because you have just been sweating. Do you remember the days where you don't have to wear 12 layers to go out the door? I miss those days. I know my flip flops miss me, I just know it. 

Anyways as I have mentioned around here for the last little while I have been having a lot of trouble with my blog. I was convinced it was a virus and couldn't understand for the life of me why our virus protector wasn't picking it up. I had Jason look into the pop ups I was getting and play around with things and when that didn't provide results I had Geek Squad go over our computer twice and see what they could find. It always seemed to be a temporary fix and a day or two later the pop ups were back and guys let me tell you I would sit here and cry out of sheer frustration. 

Throughout all this time I did a ton of research online just with Google and seeing what Blogger itself offered for resources and I wasn't really finding anything that was helpful. I will admit I am by no means technically savvy and although I try I definitely wasn't getting anywhere. I found a forum the other night and was reading it not sure if it would help, and when I mentioned to Tanya the next day what I was dealing with she looked and came across the same forum so I decided to post a question hoping someone could help. After a day I was referred to another forum where they felt I would get more answered. I have to say I was super impressed with the response that I got. 

The gentlemen who responded to my question said that it sounded like the problem I was experiencing was "Browser Hijacking" , not only did he provide that exact link so I was aware of what I was dealing with but he gave links to websites he thought would be helpful in getting rid of my problem. Basically he advised going into my 'add and remove programs' and finding anything that I don't remember downloading and get rid of it. So after some searching for that, as I said I am not technically savvy I came across a whole bunch of crap that I know I didn't download. However instead of just deleting willy nilly I figured I should consult Jason on it, I showed him the information I was given on the forum and he spent a good hour or so screwing around and apparently it worked because here I am with no issues. I am praying it lasts!!! How frustrating the last two months have been every time I try and blog. 

Anyways I don't really have a lot to say today, but I wanted to stop by and make sure my blog was actually working pop up free and I figured while I was here I might share a few articles with you that have been interesting to me that you might want to check out. 

As you all know if you have been around here for awhile we are currently living in Jersey City. Tanya sent me this article the other day that I found interesting but not really surprising. You can read it HERE.

As I mentioned in last weeks HF4F post I have been drinking more Dunkin Donut's than Starbucks, shocking I know. I guess I just get tired of Starbucks because I generally get the same thing, its not very often they switch up their menu except for holidays and I pretty much only drink one or two of their holiday drinks. They did add the Cinnamon Dolce Latte recently but I feel that's a drink you have to be in the mood for. Tanya and I were talking about it the other day as we passed by a Starbucks and had a conversation stating all of the above mentioned... Yesterday Tanya sent me THIS.. its like they were reading our minds! 

If you know me at all you know I am not a very patient person and one of my biggest pet peeves ever is a lack of social etiquette. Hold the door for people, walk on the right side of the sidewalk, don't take up the whole side walk, pay attention to your surroundings, use MANNERS and so on. I think its just common decency but let me tell y'all nobody here has it. Maybe I am at a disadvantage growing up in Canada where people are just nice, always.. then we moved to the South where people literally run ahead of you to open and hold the door for you, no one can help you enough, its incredible. Here it is nothing to have someone let the door slam in your face, walk towards you on the WRONG side of the sidewalk and expect you to move for them (Its actually hilarious when you just stand in front of them and stare waiting for them to move, it totally freaks them out) and so on. No one here has any manners at all it seems, so when Tanya sent me THIS article yesterday I was in stitches.. if you read no other article I have talked about here, at least check out this one. 

Nothing overly exciting but none the less some things that have interested me this week. I did finish reading a book this week but I am not going to review it here because I don't have anything good to say about it, but if you are interested in checking it out (don't waste your time) you can view it HERE

I have one last book around the apartment to read and then I am on the hunt, with these cold days I need good things to read. Any suggestions? What are y'all reading?? 

So that's my scoop today, nothing very exciting and a whole lot of rambling. You're welcome! 

Thanks for stopping by guys, have a fantastic day!! If you are all about the Thursday night ABC shows like I am.. ENJOY!

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Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Mini Chicken Pot Pies!

Good Morning,

I am really excited to finally be sharing a recipe with you guys, as it has definitely been awhile. I won't lie not being at home in my lovely big kitchen doesn't leave me totally inspired all the time. I like to try new recipes though and I get so sick of dinners that its definitely good to try something new.

So awhile back I was perusing Pinterest looking for some new recipes to try and came across THIS one. We really love turkey/chicken pot pie but this was just a different way to make it, I pinned it not knowing when I would actually try it but I knew that it looked good.

Well last week when trying to plan dinner I decided that I was going to give the mini chicken pot pies a whirl. I made sure I had all the stuff and then for some reason I didn't get to them last week, and so I made them last night. Prior to actually making them I kept thinking of all the things that could go wrong, they might get stuck in the muffin tray, ooze out everywhere and then be try.. you know, not that I was trying to be a pessimist but I always worry when I am making something I have never tried before. I couldn't have been more wrong which made the whole thing that much better! So let me tell y'all just what I did.

I made 6 decent size mini pies, I used a baking stone which is a little deeper and wide than a regular muffin tin.

What You'll Need:

- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 Boneless skinless Chicken breast
- 1 package of turkey gravy mix (you can use a can, or if you're fancy make your own)
- Onion (to your taste, Jason doesn't love onions so I didn't use a lot)
- Garlic
- Vegetables of your liking. (again to your discretion what you like, I used a country mix. Carrots, green beans & corn). 
- Pillsbury Grands flaky biscuits
- Butter
- Chicken Stock

I started out with two chicken breast and just baked them in the oven. I'm sorry but at the beginning of this process I was thinking it was probably going to be a Pinterest fail so I didn't take any pictures. Season the chicken to your liking, but remember its going in a savory dish with other strong flavors and so you don't want to make it too strong and overpower the natural flavors. As the chicken was baking I chopped my onion and garlic and put it in a pan with a little extra virgin olive oil. Once the onion and garlic had sweated a bit I added my vegetables. Season with salt and pepper at this point if you would like.

I used frozen vegetables which is something I actually never do and therefore I didn't need to actually cook them it was more a matter of reheating them. If you are going to use fresh veggies I would suggest blanching them before adding them to your filling. When the chicken was finished I chopped it up into smaller chunks and added it to the vegetable mixture in my pot.

Now that everything was in there I added a cup of chicken stock along with my package McCormick turkey gravy mix as pictured HERE. On medium heat the gravy will thicken. If you feel its too thick feel free to add some more stock to thin it out a little, recipes are all about tweaking them to your own liking. Once to desired thickness, turn off and let cool.

I would say start assembling your little pies about a half hour or so before you are ready to eat.

Pull your biscuits out of the fridge and pop open the packaging. As you can see on the picture below there are 8 biscuits in the package and you are making 6 pies but they will need little tops. Use your discretion as to how thick you want the tops to be, you will have two full biscuits to split between 6 pies for topping, you may need to keep an extra layer or two.. this is why its great to use this flaky layers because they literally pulls right apart!

Once you have popped out your biscuit you are going to need to flatten it out so you can have enough to cover the bottom of you muffin spot in your tray. You don't want it too thin though as i needs to be able to hold your filling in when you pop it out of the pan. See picture below.

Before putting the biscuits in the tray I did lightly butter the tray so they wouldn't stick. I just took a little butter on a paper towel and lightly coated the inside, you could use a cooking spray as well. 

I made mine one at a time, I was worried that once I put the biscuit in the tray if I didn't fill it than it might shrink. 

I overfilled mine just a little, I worried that they would eventually leak everywhere when I was cooking them but they surprisingly did not!

I did put a baking sheet under my muffin tray just in case they did leak everywhere. I put the top layer on each little pie and pinched around the sides to make sure everything was sealed as best they could be. Don't be too much of a stickler here, mine definitely were not perfect and if they aren't if just give a little better of an outlet for steam so they don't explode. Think about when you are baking a regular pie, you poke holes in the top to let the steam out, same idea. 

As you can see above I did poke some holes in each one, better safe than sorry. 

I put mine in the oven at a temperature of 375 for about 17-20 minutes. Everyone's oven is different, the Pinterest recipe I looked at said 400 degrees for 12-15 minutes, I say just watch them and when they are browning on top use your judgement. When mine were getting quite brown I took them out and put a really light layer of butter on top, leave this out if you don't feel like it.. it probably doesn't make that big of a difference. After that I popped them back in the oven for 2 minutes. 

I could not be happier with how they turned out, they looked fantastic!! I was so worried that when I went to take them out of the stone they would either, not budge and there was going to be no pretty way of scooping them out, or they were crumble in my hand. I really dreaded either of these things happening but when I went to pick them up they slid right out of the stone. PERFECTION!

I am so happy with how these turned out, and let me tell you they were SO easy! This is something you could make a lot of the filling and freeze half for a quick and easy week night dinner, pull the filling out of the freezer in the morning on your way to work and throw them together in no time at night when you get home. Even if you choose not to freeze it, this is a super quick and easy meal. 

Side note, I really didn't find mine to be dry at all but if you have dippers in your family or would just prefer a little extra gravy it doesn't hurt to have a little on the side. You can make an extra package or whatever you choose. Like I said the great thing about recipes is you can make it all to your own liking, tweak them in flavor and texture to please those your feed!!

I hope you guys enjoy this recipe, if you happen to make them at home yourself please tell me how they turned out!!! 

Have a great day, and as always thank you for stopping by!

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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Live with Kelly & Michael @ ABC Studios

As you all know because I have mentioned it a bunch of times that Tanya and I went to a live taping of Live with Kelly and Michael last week and let me tell y'all it was FANTASTIC!

We had to be there quite early and as it is all the way over by Columbus Circle in the city we had to meet at the Path station here at 6:00am and if you know me at all you know I am NOT a morning person. I was up at 4:30am to start getting ready because I couldn't decide what to wear and I have to have a coffee in the morning and just wake up before I got out the door. I met Tanya at 6:00am and we were on our way. Once we arrived in the city and took the subway as far as we could we had to walk about 8 blocks which in the city is short blocks. Thankfully we had priority tickets because waiting outside while it was 9 degrees was MISERABLE, but we didn't have to wait long. It was actually quite nice that while waiting in line they brought a food truck and everything was free! We didn't indulge as we didn't want to get out of line and couldn't take anything inside with us.

While waiting in line they opened up a booth with all kinds of souvenirs, shirts, mugs and all that good stuff. I naturally had to get a coffee mug, especially after the gentlemen selling them came out and made a big deal about having the same mug as Michael or Kelly.. I got the same one as Michael Strahan, naturally.

We waited quite a bit from the time we got there until the time we went in to where we would be sitting but once we were inside it really seemed to fly by. When we went in we could pretty much sit anywhere but naturally the first and second two was taken so we decided to go to the second level center so we would be directly above them!

The set was a lot different then I thought, smaller I guess. There were people bustling around setting things up and getting things organized but it looked quite small, yet obviously exciting.

Also for any of you who thought it was actually a window behind them with a view of the city, its not. 

It takes an army. As you can see we were above some of the lights which actually turned out to be fine, I didn't find them to be in the way at all. Plus after being outside in the freezing cold and the fact that they keep the studio temperature set to 60 it was nice to have as much heat from all the lights that we could. 

Because we were in the front row of the top level we all had a beach ball under our chair to throw during the trivia part of the show. As you can see they ask that you not hit Michael or Kelly with the ball. Funny story though, the guy sitting next to Tanya threw his cell phone when he through the ball. HA! Thankfully no one was hurt! 

If you watch the show you know that after they call someone with the trivia question they pick a number after for an audience member to receive a prize as well. The seats are not numbered as you would have expected, they just hand out numbers to you. 

They danced their way out, sit down and chat about the news.

Not a good picture but Michael was waving to me so I had to post it! HA! During the commercial break they walk around and talk to the audience, they sign things (mostly Michael, Giants fans) and take pictures with audience members. They are so friendly and hilarious, I really enjoyed the commercial breaks just as much as the actual show. 

Prior to going we knew the guests were going to be Hugh Grant and Terrance Howard, I was honestly excited to find out who the people were going to be, but the fact that these people weren't on the top of my must see list didn't really matter because I was just excited to be going. However the day before we went Julian Edelmen was on the show, I would have died to see him. 

This was too good, Kelly is HILARIOUS! She went up to this girl asking to touch her hair and while doing so she kept saying "Your hair give me life!" then she said "If this show wasn't so rigid I would have WAY better hair!" hilarious! 

The next guest was Terrance Howard, not going to lie I don't think much of this guy but again I was just happy to be there. He came on saying that his newest role almost didn't happen on account that he went into the role at 250lbs and that is just not what they envisioned for the role. His cast mates decided to help him and whenever they weren't filming they were doing push ups, so he challenged Michael and Kelly saying he knew he could do at least 70! 

He didn't do anywhere close to 70 and was the first to give up, Kelly won. She said and I quote "I WOULD DIE BEFORE I WOULD LOSE!" seriously she is absolutely HILARIOUS! 

Regardless of who won the challenge followed by Michael unzipping his pants.. WINNING! When everyone started wooting and hollering he very suddenly turned around and laughed claiming he forgot where he was for a second. No problem Mike, no problem at all! 

A Women in the audience brought a bunch of footballs for Strahan to sign which he graciously did. The guy behind us called to him the entire show wanting him to sign his jersey that he brought. Finally he saw him and the guy through the jersey down, Michael signed it and through it up but it got stuck in the lights, he laughed and said "I never said I was a quarter back!" HA!

At this point the show was basically over and they asked up to stick around while the hosts changed. We weren't really sure what was going to happen, a Q&A or what. Turns out they changed their clothes and came back on to film the first segment of Friday's show as well as an interview with another celebrity. We were really excited as this game us more time, another chance to win the prize from the trivia question and we were excited to find out who the other celebrity was going to be. The beginning of the show was hilarious, I hope you caught it on Friday, it was the Valentine's Day show!

Ok so get this.. they play trivia again, and the guy sitting beside Tanya won!!! We almost died!! First of all Tanya almost sat there, second of all it was a whole kitchens worth of Cuisinart appliances. DAMN! None the less it was a great time! 

They finally announced who the next celebrity was going to be, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Honestly guys I absolutely hate Nascar and I could have cared less to see that guy but he actually turned out to be pretty interesting. Not to mention it was great to see more filming! 

The whole experience was absolutely fantastic, we had such a great time! A live taping is obviously WAY better than watching it on TV, and both Kelly and Michael are FABULOUS!!! After the show we picked up our purchases and headed out! I bought the same mug Michael uses everyday on the show and I couldn't love it anymore! 

After the show Tanya and walked across the street to MAC Cosmetics and then hit up PJ Clarke's for lunch. When we lived in New York before Tanya and I frequented PJ Clarke's, it was absolutely amazing and since being back I have not been but have always wanted to. When we came out and it was right there we decided to stop, we were starving! First let me just tell you that Buddy Holly proposed to his fiance at PJ Clarke's, just a little fun fact for you! Either way the menu had completely changed and they wanted $18.00 for a freakin' hamburger that didn't even come with a side! I almost died. None the less it was still good even though over priced! 

Tanya and I made our way through the city and back home, it was seriously an awesome day and a fantastic experience! If you don't already watch the show I highly recommend starting your day with it, and if you happen to be in the city try and get in for a taping of a show, all the tickets are free you just have to be able to get them!

If you have a minute click HERE and pop on over to Prairie Girl in the Big, Scary World and check out Tanya's post on our day as well! 

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