Thursday, November 17, 2011

Gluten-Free Eggplant Parmesan

2 large eggplants
2 jars of marinara sauce (I always double check with the company to make sure the sauce is gluten-free), or you can always make your own sauce. This particular day, I was a little lazy! If you do use your own sauce, I would suggest making it a day in advance to save time.
1 Lb. grated mozzarella
1 cup fresh grated Parmesan
4 eggs
4 cups of gluten-free bread crumbs (Glutino is my brand of choice for MOST gluten-free products I buy) Please see their website and check out their huge variety of items!! www.glutino.com
1/4 cup of milk
vegetable oil for frying the eggplant
salt- one tsp for the eggplant and one tsp for the bread crumbs
pepper- 1/2 tsp for the eggplant and 1/2 tsp for the bread crumbs
garlic powder- one tsp for the eggplant and one tsp for the bread crumbs
Italian seasoning- one tablespoon for the eggplant and one tablespoon for the bread crumbs
If you would like it to have a little bite, add 1 tsp of chili flakes or 1/8 of a tsp to the mixture

  • Cut the top and bottom off the eggplant. Peel the eggplant, and then slice it into 1/4" thick pieces. 
  • Season the eggplant lightly with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and Italian seasoning. 
  • Heat the oil in a large saucepan that will be able to hold several pieces of eggplant at one time.
  • While the oil is warming up, beat the eggs and the milk in a medium bowl. 
  • Put the bread crumbs into a large zip lock bag. Season with salt, pepper and Italian seasoning. 
  • Dip the eggplant into the egg mixture, then into the zip lock bag. Close the bag tightly and shake well, to ensure the eggplant is evenly coated. 
  • Fry the eggplant at medium heat for about 5 minutes per side, or until each side is golden brown. 
  • Place fried eggplant on paper towels while you fry the rest, to get rid of some of the excess oil. (I usually snack on the small slices, and save the large ones for the casserole.)
  • Place one layer of eggplant in a large casserole dish. Spread an even layer of marinara sauce over the eggplant, then add  1/2 the Parmesan and 1/2 the mozzarella to the top. 
  • You may not need both jars of sauce. It depends on how much sauce you like. I usually use about 1 1/2 jars. 
  • Add one more layer of eggplant, sauce, Parmesan and mozzarella...
  • Bake at 350 degrees for about an hour or until the cheese is bubbling and a beautiful golden color. 
Enjoy!!! 
Please leave your comments once you have made this yummy dish! I love to hear about people enjoying food! Especially comfort food like eggplant Parmesan!! Cooking is one of my passions! Since my daughter has to be on  gluten-free diet, I am on a mission to adapt all recipes! I wouldn't want her to have to miss out on something so delicious!

This dish also makes for great leftovers! It's even better the next day! I sometimes even eat it for breakfast! 

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Family Beach Day!!!

We have gone to the beach a few times this summer, but this day was especially great! First of all, it was just the four of us. Our family unit! My loves, My life, My joy! Daddy, Mommy, Izzy, and Jake! We packed the car full of umbrella's, a small cooler, towels, a blanket for sand, lots of sunscreen, and lunch. Off we went to Malibu! Zuma beach is one of my favorites! Ryan and I really enjoy the beach, so incorporating it into our family life is very important! The beach is calming, relaxing, peaceful, and makes for a great playground full of exploration and fun!

What a perfect day! The sun was shining down on us, early this morning! We arrived in Malibu around 10AM. Not a cloud in the sky. Mommy and Daddy set up camp, and the kids were already digging in the sand! Isabelle dived in to her sand toys, while Jacob discovered the flavors of seaweed. Daddy tried to take Iz to the water, but the cold temperatures of the Cali Pacific Ocean, scared her off. I'm positive if we were in Hawaii or something, we wouldn't have been able to get her out of the water! Instead of playing in the water, Iz spent her time building sand castles with daddy. She also got buried in the sand for the first time! She wasn't a huge fan, but she loved bury daddy! Jacob spent all of his time on the sand exploring. He LOVED eating the sand and pretty much anything else he could get into his mouth. I spend my time following him around, keeping things out of his mouth.

These are the days I live for! There is nothing better than a day at the beach with the ones you love!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Adventure #2 of the Szechuwan Garden 07/08/11

I'm Sitting on the couch watching The Food Network's show, "Food Network Star," thinking... could that be me?? Could I be the next Food Network Star? LOL for this moment in time, I guess not. I can dream though, right!?! Food is one of my many passions. I love eating food, I love cooking food, and I love trying new and interesting food. My stars may not be in line for the Food Network yet, but for now I will settle for discovering the Szechuwan Garden of Moorpark.

Today's picks, which came from my lovely Facebook friends are #'s 25 and 100. Number 25 is Kung Pao Shrimp. Love it!! Woot, Woot (Thanks Niki!). Number 100 is Shrimp with Black Bean Sauce (sounds yummy, thanks Rachel). Today is a shrimp day! I love shrimp and I've had Kung Pao, so I'm not feeling intimidated at all.




The Kung Pao Shrimp was yummy as I was anticipating. I expected the sauce for the Kung Pao to be spicier, so that was a little disappointing... and then I bit into a chili. My tongue was burning along with the back of my throat. I spoke to soon, or I guess in my case since I was alone, I jinxed myself. I love the peanuts in the Kung Pao for the crunch factor, and the water chestnuts add a cooling factor. For me personally, there were a little too much of the water chestnuts, and not enough peanuts. Overall it was tasty and I would order it again.

The Shrimp with Black Bean Sauce was delish! I'm so glad this item was chosen for me! I don't know if I would have ordered it on my own. Not because I don't like black beans... I love black beans! I guess I just couldn't imagine a black bean sauce with shrimp. I'm not a picky eater, so I was excited to try something new! However; I have to say, I wasn't thrilled when I saw the green bell pepper mixed in with the shrimp. I usually pick those out of dishes, or I omit them when cooking at home. They are bitter, and just not one of my favorite veggies. I decided to take a bite of the green bell pepper first. If I could eat the pepper, than I felt I would be able to eat the shrimp. To my surprise, the pepper was great! The sauce was a little sweet and had a bit of a creamy texture. I think that caused the pepper to taste more mild than bitter. This dish also had onion in it which was a little caramelized. I absolutely love caramelized onion!! I will for sure order the Shrimp with Black Bean Sauce again!

Today I decided to order these items off of the lunch menu. The lunch menu gives you fried rice, an appetizer, and a Chinese salad. If you eat in the restaurant, you get a choice of soup, but for take out, it's an extra charge. Booooooo. The fried rice was nothing like the fried rice you can order off their menu. It was literally just fried rice. It didn't have carrots, peas, or egg in it. It was just rice. I should have just gotten the steamed rice. I would have been happier. The appetizer was a single fried Wonton, which was ok. I love anything fried, so I can't really complain about it. Just wasn't AMAZING. The salad was also a joke! It consisted of lettuce and lettuce LOL with a simple Asian dressing. The dressing was sweet, but there wasn't much of it, so I can't really give an effective comment. Next time I will order the items solo, and not order them as a part of the lunch special. 

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Adventure #1 of the Szechuwan Garden 06/30/11

Recently I discovered a local Chinese resturaunt which offers 189 different menu options!

I originally went there for their Wor Wonton soup sometime last week. I was suffering from a severe sinus infection/upper respiratory infection and felt that soup might do me some good! The soup was delicious and did make me feel better, but ultimately wasn't the cure. Since the soup was yummy, I considered ordering a different menu item in the near future! I love trying new places! and we ALL know... I LOVE FOOD!

On Thursday I was craving Chinese food! Staring at to go menu for the Szechuwan Garden, I was feeling overwhelmed with how huge their selection was! 189 items?? Really! How was I ever going to decide! If you know me, I have the hardest time deciding on a place to eat, let alone deciding what I want from that place LOL.So I had an idea! How about I let my Facebook friends pick something for me! I asked my friends to pick a number between 1 and 189!

My friend Andrea was the first to respond. She chose #74- Chicken Cream Corn Soup. My husband was the second to respond. Of course he chose the #69- Pu Pu Platter (Assorted Appetizer). Sorry, I have to laugh! LOL... HHmmm I thought to myself! Neither really sounded good. I should go with the first choice since I did ask for someone to pick a number. I like corn chowder. Would it be similar?? and What the heck is the Pu Pu platter? I couldn't decide LOL even though someone had already decided for me =-) Sorry folks, This is how my brain works. I pretty hungry, so maybe I should get both? I dunno what to do... AAhhhh

Well I ended up getting both along with my husbands request for fried rice. We decided to try the House Fried Rice (#186), which had chicken, beef, and shrimp! The fried rice was great! Each piece of meat had a nice coating of a light batter and the seasoning was perfect. Sometimes I find fried rice to be a little bland, but not this one! It was delicious and fried. Two of my favorite things... This meal was not figure friendly.

The Pu Pu Platter (for two) came with fried shrimp, beef on a stick, some kind of ground meat in the shape of a crescent, bbq pork, and spring rolls. The fried shrimp was good except, as I got closer to the tail, I saw the huge poop filled vein. That kind of grossed me out. The beef on a stick was good. Had the taste of All spice I think. The crescent shaped thing was interesting. It smelled and tasted a little like cat food. I think it was chicken, but needless to say, I didn't finish the whole thing (I've never actually tasted cat food just for the record). The bbq pork was good! It tasted like any other bbq'd pork I've had at other Chinese restaurants. Lastly for the Pu Pu Platter, the spring rolls. They fit into the standard category as well. Tasty with the hot mustard is how I like them!

The Chicken Cream Corn Soup was actually my favorite out of the whole meal! I will definitely order that another time! It reminded me of Egg Flower Soup, with the addition of corn and chicken. I am a soup lover and since I have been sick, it was warm and comforting!

Overall, I would say my experience was interesting. I'd like to try this experiment again, just to see what numbers people pick and what kind of items come out of it. Until next time... Keep eating!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Oaks Korean BBQ- June 18th 2011

The Mommy Network chose Oaks Korean BBQ for our June Mom's Night Out. It's located at 1970 Sequoia Ave in Simi Valley. Priscilla recommended, and the rest of us agreed. It sounded yummy! Who doesn't like BBQ? I have to say, we had a great time, and the food was delicious! The service was pretty good! Our server was very friendly and shared all of the important details on the menu. I couldn't tell you exactly what we ordered, but it was family style. We shared three different BBQ items, pork, beef, and shrimp. The BBQ items were served on hot plates with caramelized onions! YUM! Since we decided to share family style, we were also served a "large" appetizer, miso soup, six side dishes, and dessert! The appetizer looked like egg foo young, but I don't know if it had egg in the ingredients. It was some kind of Korean comfort food! The side dishes were delicious! I LOVED the bean sprouts! They were marinated in sesame oil and other unknown seasoning. The soup was warm and comforting! I could have Miso soup everyday! Polar bear is only so lucky (wink, wink). And for dessert, we had mochi ice cream (I think that's how you spell it), another one of my loves- Strawberry, vanilla, and green tea flavored! On top of the BBQ, we all shared a few sushi rolls. Yep! They have sushi too! It isn't often when I eat until I'm full, but tonight was one of those nights =-) Thank You Priscilla for suggesting Oaks Korean BBQ. I'd never had Korean BBQ, and I'm glad I tried it! I'm looking forward to having a nice dinner there with my husband next!

Friday, June 17, 2011

The Mommy Network

Feburary 28th 2011, a few friends (Andrea, Mandy, and Jessica) and I started a Mommy group!! We decided to name it THE MOMMY NETWORK!!!! In the last few months, we have accrued 90 plus members, had several playdates,  family events, and even organized our first fundraiser walk for The Williams Syndrome Association! Starting the group has been such a positive experience for me! I have made several great mommy friends, and my kids have made friends that I hope will last them their lifetime! Some days it's a challenge just getting out the door with two kids, but meeting up with The Mommy Network is always worth the challenge! The kids have a great time, and I get to enjoy a little adult conversation. We share stories about things like potty training, how to get our kids to eat, and family vacations! Of course, our conversation never go without interruptions. That's ok though, we are all used to the chaos. If one kid isn't getting into some kind of mischief, than another one is.

Family events are a great way for daddy's to get to know one another. We are hoping to set up a beer tasting and/or poker night for the daddy's in the near future! Last month we went to Kid's Adventure Garden (Thousand Oaks), and the month before that, we went to the Underwood Farm here in Moorpark. I think there were at least 15 families that showed up! The weather was perfect, sun shining with blue sky's. The farm is a lot of fun! It's inexpensive and outdoors, which all of the kids LOVE! Being outside is the greatest adventure when you are young, right?? Next Month we have a BBQ planned for the 4th of July.

Another AWESOME event we plan once a month is a Mom's Night Out. Mom's need a little "Me" time, and what better way to spend it than with some other Fantastic Mommy's! We usually start with dinner, and then head out on the town for a little excitement.Last month was dinner and bowling. Those that couldn't make it (myself included) went to dinner and a movie the following week. This Saturday, June 18th is this months MNO which I'm super excited for! We are going to a highly recommended Korean BBQ joint, and then I think we are going to find a place that does Karaoke! I might need a few cocktails to actually get up there and sing, but it's going to be fun no matter what! P.S. I have a Designated Driver (Woot, Woot).

The Mommy Network is a positive group of wonderful people! There is only good in our future! Our glass is half full! I cherish the friendships I have made and look forward to what's to come! Thank you ladies (and gentlemen) for enriching my life!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Beach day with the Mommy's and now it's time to RELAX!!

We have had a great day so far; although, daddy is stuck doing Jury Duty!

The morning Didn't start off well because Isabelle was melting down by 9AM! I was hoping that wasn't a glimpse of how the rest of the day was going to be! We've had this beach day planned for at least two weeks.  I was especially excited today because my mom, sister, and nephew Braydon were going to join us! They arrived at the house around 9:45... and we were off! Isabelle still had a few issues in the car, but once she realized where we were going, she finally started to get excited! It's funny... she recognizes Malibu Canyon and knows we will be driving through three tunnels! She yells out, "Mommy, tunnels soon!!!" and then proceeds to tell me all about the sand she is going to play in! I love that she can now communicate with full sentences! It makes our days so much more interesting and exciting for me as a parent! I'm amazed at the vocabulary she has thus far!

The scheduled forecast for Moorpark (where I live) is a high of 83 degrees, with a bit of haze. LOL- why when we get to Zuma, is it 65 degrees, completely foggy with a chilly breeze? Oh well. What matters is we are outside and surrounded by great mommy friends (and their kids of course). We all know kids don't care if it's a little cool outside! They were having a ball, as soon as their little toes hit the sand! Sand, toys, water, and food! OOOooh My! Couldn't ask for anything more! Everyone had a blast, and the kids were exhausted when it was time to leave. Mission accomplished! However, for some reason, my kids are refusing to nap today. Go figure! They are playing in their beds! And of course I spoke too soon! Now Jacob is screaming. To get him, or not to get him?? Hhhmmmm I will give it a few minutes! I sure would love a nap myself! Mommy's don't usually get naps though! Right?!!

So far, it's been a pretty good day! Can't complain! I LOVE my kids and look forward to everyday! Even the hard exhausting days! I wouldn't trade this life for another! I am blessed and thankful for everyday I have to spend with my family and friends!

 

Friday, February 25, 2011

Visits from Heaven

I woke up this morning thinking about my dad... It's been a while since he's visited me (over two years- I was pregnant with IZ) and I can't help but wonder. How is he doing? Does he come around often? Has he seen my kids? What does he think of the life I lead? What would our relationship be like now? Would he have gotten the proper help he needed to fully recover... with the support of his now adult children?

The first time he visited me in a dream, it had been less than a year since he'd been gone. I was living in my apartment with my roommates Brian and Stephanie. I remember specific things about the dream. The setting was my 5th Birthday party on Stanridge in Lancaster. We were in the house and everyone was sitting on the calico colored carpet, playing a party game. The walls were very white and plain around us. I knew others were there but did not see them directly. My dad was sitting straight across from me. We made eye contact, and in my mind, I couldn't understand why I was seeing him. I kept telling myself he was gone... how is it possible for him to be here?? Thats when I knew it wasn't just a dream! It felt so real! I believe it to be a real meeting, straight from heaven. I didn't touch or smell him, but we met eyes, and I knew it was really him! He was stopping by to console my pain of his passing. Waking up that morning, I was in full blown hysterics. I wanted him to hold me, but knew that wasn't possible. Even though I was so upset, I knew he was with me and seeing his face was the beginning of my healing. The days and months to follow, I longed for another visit. I can't remember how much time had passed, but I did in fact SEE HIM AGAIN...

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

MNO #2 Feb 19th 2011

First I must say, I have met an amazing group of women! Joining the mom's group was one of the best things I could have done! It's been great for my children, and I'm thankful for the friends I have made for myself! We share similar stories dealing with parenting, marriage, and sometimes recipes, just to name a few! We get together about two times a week for playdates. Some playdates have been at a number of local parks, and often, one of the mommies opens their home, for all of us to play. Coffee and snacks are always provided, including gluten-free stuff for Isabelle!!! The mommies have been super cautious when buying snacks that all the kids can enjoy, which means a lot to me! During the playdates, We take turns running after the kids while the rest of us enjoy a little adult conversation. Everyone I have met has been soooo nice, and I look forward to meeting many more!

One of the monthly activities of the group is a MNO (Mom's Night Out). How important is that!!! Sooooo important! Mommies need their time away from the kids, and getting together with the other women is always a blast! I have only been to two MNO so far but look forward to many, many more!

This month we decided to go to Cafe Firenze located here in Moorpark. For those of you who don't know,  Cafe Firenze is owned by the Top Chef Fabio Viviani. He was the Top Chef Season 5 fan favorite. Very yummy eye candy, and his voice and accent could melt any woman. Ok, ok, back to the night and enough about Fabio lol.... They have a happy hour from 5pm-7pm which happened to work out perfect for all of us! I was a little disappointed there wasn't any food on the happy hour menu, but you can't beat their $4 martini's! Happy hour is usually only honored at the bar, but the manager was nice enough to let our group of 10 move to the bar tables, with the $4 special. I personally had the pomegranate martini. It was dangerously delicious! We all shared the Calamari E Zucchini, and a vegetable platter. Everyone then ordered dinner. I wasn't super hungry so I decided to order another appetizer. I chose Crostini Di Pancetta. It was delicious and more than enough for one person! I love their food and can't wait to try something new from the menu!

After all of us finished eating, which means it was coming time to return to our families. The company of the other women was more than enjoyable, and I even had the pleasure of meeting a few new members. I can't wait until the next Mom's Night Out!! We will be at a different location next month. I hope the turn out is as great as this evening was! What more could a mom ask for?? Great food, yummy drinks, a little eye candy, and a wonderful group of women to spend some time with!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The Melting Pot- Valentine's Day with My hubby

Valentine's Day is a day for LOVE and ROMANCE... What better place to celebrate one another than The Melting Pot (in Thousand Oaks). I've tried for MONTHS to convince my husband to take me there! Growing up, we loved doing fondue as a family! It's not your usual meal. You can choose from a variety of items to cook, sauces to dip, and between sweet or savory. It makes for great conversation and can be an exciting social event! My husband had some weird idea about Fondue. After our date at The Melting Pot, he told me he thought it was something to do with tofu lol. Needless to say, he had a great time and looks forward to going again, YAY!

So on our date, We were seated quickly, and were actually given a semi-private booth which I heard is hard to come by at The Melting Pot. Our server was a little slow at approaching our table, but we were enjoying one another's company, so I didn't mind too much. Our server was great overall! He explained the whole menu to us and how the whole fondue process works. He made great suggestions, and seemed to give his genuine opinion. There was a special Valentine menu, but we decided to go with "The Big Night Out- France," which is a four course meal. It starts with a French style cheese fondue. The cheese fondue is then followed by a salad. We went with the ceasar salad, recommended by our server because of the Parmesan-encrusted pine nuts. The pine nuts were awesome, but I found the salad to be a usual cearar salad. For our main course, we decided to go with the Fondue Fusion which consisted of lobster tail, filet mignon, marinated sirloin, garlic and herb chicken, duck, shrimp, and a variety of vegetables. We substituted the duck for more sirloin. Of course they wouldn't let us have more filet mignon. It was all great!!! There were several sauces available for dipping, two different batters, and we chose to cook our items in oil. We were so full by the end of our main course, we didn't have room for the star... chocolate fondue! Thankfully, they gave us a rain check for a chocolate fondue, so I'm sure we will go again in the near future! 






It couldn't have been a better night out. The grandparents were babysitting, and we got all dressed up! I had never been to The Melting Pot, but I've had fondue several times. Can't wait to go back! 

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Broccoli and Split Pea Soup

I LOVE making soup!! It's super easy to make, and ALWAYS comes out great! Soup to me is comforting on all occasions, and one of it's greatest qualities is the nutritional value! I usually look up soup recipes from some of my favorite Chefs, and then adapt them into my own. When I first started making split pea soup, I followed the Anderson Split Pea recipe which can be found at this link: http://www.cdkitchen.com/recipes/recs/232/AndersonsSplitPeaSoup63578.shtml

Over time, I add new ingredients, and try new flavors. This version includes broccoli, which I LOVE! Broccoli has great nutritional value along with it's great taste! Broccoli is high in Vitamin K, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Fiber, Potassium, Folate, and Lutein. Vitamin K is essential for the coagulation of blood which is important for the healing of wounds. If you suffer from a clotting disorder and/or take blood thinners, it's not recommended to eat a lot of broccoli.Vitamin A helps with vision and is required for the immune system, and the production of red blood cells. Broccoli is also high in Vitamin C which contributes to the attack of free radicals one might be exposed to in the environment. Fiber promotes digestive health and can also help lower cholesterol. I hope you enjoy this recipe for it's comforting taste, and it's nutritional value! The Broccoli is only one component I focused on, but many of the ingredients offer vital vitamins and minerals required to maintain a healthy diet! I believe it's important to nourish our body and souls with yummy healthy food! ENJOY!!!

8 cups of low sodium chicken broth
2 cups dried split peas
3 celery stalks chopped
1 medium onion chopped
3 cups broccoli finely chopped
1 ham steak chopped into bite size pieces
6 sprigs of thyme
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon pepper
1 tablespoon Tabasco Sauce
1 tablespoon olive oil

In a stock pot, heat oil on medium heat. Add celery, onion, broccoli, and the ham into the warm oil. Cook for about 10 minutes or until the onions are translucent. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and then the Tabasco Sauce. Stir in the sprigs of fresh thyme. Pour in the split peas to combine with other ingredients. Cover with the chicken broth and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 3 hours, stirring every 30 minutes. Sometimes I add a couple cups of water as it's cooking if the soup seems too thick. The starches from the split peas thicken the soup as it cooks. It's a personal preference how thick you want it. Remove whats left of the sprigs of thyme and ENJOY!

For an added bonus, pour some soup over a scoop of brown rice.

Most of the information on broccoli was found at:  http://www.mealsmatter.org/EatingForHealth/FunctionalFoods/Health-Benefits-of-Broccoli/

Monday, January 31, 2011

Carbonnades A La Flamande- Julia Child's Recipe- January 23rd 2011

So in the morning... we were going to head out for a day at Disneyland. The winds were blowing out of control, so Ryan Matthew had a great idea!! He suggested we go to Borders Books, buy the Julia Child's cookbook, "Mastering the Art of French Cooking," pick a recipe, go to Costco to get all the ingredients, and make a yummy meal! What an AWESOME idea! He picked Carbonnades A La Flamande. It looked pretty simple to put together, but was going to take a few hours to cook. The recipe is Beef and Onions Braised in Beer. The process was a piece of cake! There is nothing better than pitting all of the ingredients into a pot and letting it cook! Browning the beef took a little time, but I enjoy cooking, so it didn't matter. Cooking to me is peaceful! It's kind of like gardening or going to therapy lol. The only difference with cooking is you get pretty immediate results and gratification. Gardening gives you flowers, fruit, or vegetables, months later usually. Going to therapy takes years sometimes to make any real progress =-) So I choose to cook! If you put your soul into it, you can have amazing results! Ok back to my experience and enough about how I heal myself lol...

The meat came out really tender! Perfectly cooked! The caramelized onions and brown sugar added a touch of  sweetness. Ryan Matthew made the parsley potatoes to go along side the beef, as suggested by Julia. They were buttery and yummy! I look forward to making this dish again, and can't wait to try some of the other recipes from Julia's cookbook! I'm a simple person that loves cooking! I've never studied cooking, but I watch the cooking channel as if it were my own personal professor. I'm sure some of the recipes will be more challenging than others, but I'm up for the learning experience!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Ghosts

It's 2:30AM and I'm watching Ghost Hunters International. I'm awake feeding Jacob of course. Thank Goodness for the DVR! These days, I can't manage to stay awake much past the kids going to sleep, so I end up missing a lot of primetime television.. Jacob was on a roll, sleeping through the night; however, the last couple of weeks, he's been waking up between 2 and 3AM for a bottle. It's given me time to catch up on all of my shows, so I guess it's not a bad thing. Or should I say, I'm entertained, and don't mind being up at this hour.

So now I ask, Do you have any interest in Ghosts? Have you seen a ghost? How did it make you feel? Was anyone else with you to experience the same event? I have been intrigued by the Ghost phenomenon for many years! I think I was around 12 when I had my first experience. We lived in Las Vegas at the time. I got up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom. My room was at the end of the hallway, and straight in front of me was my brothers room, with the bathroom between us. My brother slept with the door open, so it was only natural for me to look in his room as I headed down the hall. This particular night, much to my surprise, there were two Rottwieler's at the foot of his bet. They seemed to be playing tug of war with something, but I couldn't tell what it was. I remember thinking it was a pair of socks rolled up. As I got closer, they saw me and stopped what they were doing. A strong growl came from within them as they started at me with their red glowing eyes. I got into the bathroom, which seemed to take forever, and splashed water on my face. I did this because I had seen it done in movies, and I thought it would either wake me up from this scary nightmare, or wash away this hallucination. Was I dreaming? I know what I saw. I didn't not feel crazy, but ghost dogs?? Never heard of seeing ghost dogs before. After I finished my business in the bathroom, I headed back for my bedroom. I was scared now to look in my brother's room. I had to see if they were still there! I had to know if I imagined it! I began to look in the direction of his doorway, and the growl started again! They were still there! How was this possible? In effort to keep them where they were, I tried to walk calmly back to my room. Would they come after me??? I closed my door, and hid under my covers! Hiding under my covers was something else I had seen in movies lol... My covers would protect me =-) I told my family the next day what I had seen. I think they thought I was crazy and tried to convince me it was just a dream. If only someone else could have seen what I saw! Oh well. I know it was real and thats all that matters to me! This is only the beginning of my experiences. What have you seen, heard, or felt?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Bubbie's Chicken- Izzy's Style

This is a recipe my Bubbie has been making for many, many years! I remember going to her apartment in Santa Monica, at a very young age, and enjoying this comforting meal! This is one of those dishes that makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside! You can feel the love in every bite. Bubbie doesn't cook these days, unless a bowl of cereal counts =-) but my mom has continued to make it over the years. I hope you all enjoy this as much as I have, and pass it along to those you love! This dish is super simple, and is guaranteed to bring great joy into your life! There is nothing more special than sitting around a table, with those you love, and sharing a yummy comforting meal!

Bubbie's Chicken

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup bread crumbs (gluten-free)
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 tablespoon pepper
1/4 cup olive oil

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Salt and pepper the cleaned chicken breasts. Combine bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, and Italian seasoning into a large zip lock bag. Place (one at a time) chicken breast, into the bag of dry ingredients, and shake well, making sure each piece is covered well with mixture. Arrange chicken in a casserole dish. Sprinkle a little bit of the mixture on top of the chicken for added texture. Sprinkle the chicken with olive oil. I sometimes add butter as well for extra flavor, but it's optional. Bake for about 40 minutes or until the juice from the chicken runs clear. Then all there is left to do is enjoy!!!

Bubbie originally made this recipe with corn flakes which is delicious of course! I sometimes buy gluten-free corn flakes to use in place of the bread crumbs. It just depends on what I have in the house, or what I remember to buy at the grocery store. This recipe can take many forms, and everyone's taste buds are different... but don't be afraid to try it! You will be comforted and satisfied!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

The Bachelor- Episode two- 01/10/11

Date number one... Ashley H (Dentist) PA. Brad has an amazing night planned and is hoping to laugh and have fun. The arrive in the middle of no where and it's pitch black. They flip the switch and much to Ashley's surprise, they are at a carnival, and they have it all to themselves. How magical would that be for a first date?? How could you not fall in love? What happens when all this magic is gone and they go back to their normal lives. Dates become dinner and a movie. Ashley says it was a perfect date and she even gets to dress like a princess. But is this all their reality or a made up fairy tale which ABC has created. Brad says he likes her a lot and they share their first kiss. Surprisingly, they had similar childhoods. Their fathers were not in their lives which might bring them closer together. Brad feels like she is easy to talk to and looks forward to many more conversations. Ashley is given a ROSE and their date continues... I like Ashley. She seems genuine, but how much can you really learn about someone in six weeks?? I'm a skeptic!

Date card number two is delivered to the house where the ladies wait. It's a group date. 15 girls to be exact. They are filming a Public Service Announcement for the American Red Cross... the goal is to get people to go out and donate blood. Emily, Stacy and another girl (didn't get her name) seem to have a lot of fun doing their skit. They are lighthearted and entertaining, with smiles on their faces. Melissa (Waitress) FL, is a little nuts though! She's getting frustrated, so she busts into their scene and plants her lips on him. EEwww gross! She looks like total white trash to me! Michelle (Hair Stylist) UT, has a bad attitude! It's her birthday and wants all of the attention on her. She is creating drama and like one of the other girls said, "It's her birthday, and she can cry if she wants to." Her plan works to some extent. Michelle gets a ROSE later that night at the Roosevelt Hotel. I don't think I like her much. She is playing the game, but doesn't seem to be there for love.

Jackie gets the second date with Brad. First, he takes her to a luxurious hotel in Beverly Hills. They change into robes, give one another facials, and then it looks like a little hand massage. After the pampering, Jackie is lead into a room with beautiful gowns. She is able to choose one to wear for the night. Next, Jackie is off to her own personal stylist session where she has her hair and make-up done. She is having a Pretty Woman moment!! Especially once Brad shows her the jewelry she will be wearing. Can you say Bling Bling!!! The couple then heads to the Hollywood Bowl. They share a romantic dinner, and then... Train! The band is there just for them! What a special moment! Train wouldn't be my first pick for a romantic evening, but maybe the band is special to Brad... or maybe even Jackie?

In the end, I'm glad Melissa and the other dramatic girl got sent home! Michelle should have joined them! She's rude and seems unstable! In the middle of the cocktail party, she pulls Brad to the side to ask him about what kind of coffee he likes. Really?? Starbucks or Coffee Bean? Couldn't this have been a topic of conversation at another time? I see her claws coming out,

Monday, January 3, 2011

The Bachelor Season Premier 01/03/11

I can't believe Brad a second chance at love, I mean, on national TV. I believe everything happens for a reason, but does he deserve a whole new season of the show. There are so many bachelors out in the world... why BRAD? He obviously has a lot of internal issues. Gladly he found a great therapists and has been working on himself for the last three years. I find it funny that in the first five minutes of the show, he is shirtless and then shown with his brothers kids. The producers are doing their job. They are providing sex appeal, and a tender heart lol... He says he has done a lot of soul searching and is ready for love. He wants to prove to America that he is a different man. Only time will tell.

Now it's time to meet the ladies. So far (I'm watching it as I blog), the women seem very interesting. One of them literally has her fangs out (Madison) ha ha lol. I like the girl that lost her father (Ashley S.), but it's only been two years. I don't know if thats long enough time to heal. It's not my life so it isn't fair for me to make judgments... I lost my dad in 1999 and i'm still dealing with the pain. Just saying. I also like the girl who "lost the love of her life," and has a daughter from him (Emily). I couldn't imaging going through what she went through! She seems like a very genuine person. Individuals whom have lost someone very close to them, seem to love on a deeper level or sometimes, not love at all. Then there is Alli, she tells him, "I Know America hates you, but I'm willing to give you a second chance." Chantal, who is the first to greet Brad, slaps him in the face, and proceeds to tell him that it's a slap for all the women. This should be an interesting season thats for sure. Many more blogs to come =-)