Thursday, March 31, 2011

Lazy Days And Lemons

Lemons and Oranges
Photo by Karen at French Skinny

Day 170 from Burbank: My backyard bounty. I wish I could take credit for any of this but they grow in spite of me. I did not get my mom's green thumb.

As I cut into this fresh orange, I begin to imagine all the wonderful things I could make. Lemon cake? Lemon bars? Lemon poppyseed cake! Orange marmalade? Cranberry orange bread? Duck l'orange!.......... Yeah, that sounds like a lot of work. I'll just keep sipping my lemon water and daydreaming.

It was a very lazy and citrusy day. For dinner I made some pasta. The sauce was some I had made from my mom's tomatoes and frozen for later. Apparently it's later.

I'm feeling kind of sad about the end of the FSE. Hubby doesn't seem to notice. I give him my best French pout but still he doesn't notice. I sigh very loudly. Finally he says "Are you okay?" I sigh again and say "I guess." He gets up to leave the table,"Oh good, you were looking kind of funny for a minute. I'm going to watch golf."

Clearly I need to practice my French allure.


Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Day 170 from France:
Fun With Flamenco Flair

Shaboom sends us her update from Paris Spain...

They are known for their ceramics and tile work in the south of Spain and it can be seen on many of the building facades.

Seville is a beautiful old town with lots of Moorish influences and tons of churches. Besides ingesting my body weight in tapas and sangria, I went to a Flamenco show, took a bike tour and visited lots of huge parks with beautiful monuments. Unfortunately (or maybe not) for me, it is not bull fighting season so I didn't have to watch blood and gore but got to see the stadium where the action happens regardless.

It's a lovely place to visit with tons of sunshine and I highly recommend the trip if you ever find yourself with cheap flight offers and a little time off.







Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Le Pomme

Le Pomme
Photo by Karen at French Skinny



In line at the grocery store today I suddenly realized I was proud of my purchases. Not a processed bag of anything. Fresh vegetables, fresh bread, cheese from France and fresh fruit. I found these little pink lady apples and they reminded me of Shaboomy. She would have one of these with a little tiny cup of yogurt in the morning. I got some yogurt too.
The French Skinny Experiment is ending soon. It's funny to think about how I needed my brother, The Marine, to come over and "remove" the can of protein powder from my house. The guilt of the first bite of baguette with butter. How much I wanted this to work for me.
It has worked for me. It just took miles of walking, doing stairs and consulting a few garden gnomes to realize the answer was in my own backyard.
Now what to do?
Go through my closet!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Day 169 from France:
The Tower of Jello

Shaboom sends us her update from Paris Spain...

I know it seems (at least to me) that all I ever do is shove food in my face only stopping long enough to take pictures of it, but I actually take pictures of other things now and there. Here's a few shots from yesterday's stroll through Seville.


A bridge designed by Gustav Eiffel


This tower glows gold or yellow at night and is called the Golden Tower. It isn't clear if this name comes from it's color or from the fact that they used to charge taxes to ships coming in and out of this waterway which was paid in gold bullion and stored in the tower. And whenever a Spaniard talks to you in English about it, he/she says The Yellow Tower (in their accent yellow sounds like Jello,) which (because I'm 8 years old) has now forever become the Tower of Jello.


The drumsticks above the doorway are enormous, cured pig legs, hooves and all.


A detail shot of the Eiffel designed bridge...

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Joyeux Dimanche - Souffle

This is for my friend Doug.

My first souffle!
I made it with parmesan, gruyere and onions.
Hubby ate the whole thing.
4 said it was good but needed a little salt.
(He watches too much Food Network)




How to make a souffle!



Happy Sunday!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Weigh In Week 24- Sushi


Goal: Lose 35 pounds the French Skinny Way.

(In 6 months)

Lost: 2 pounds this week

Total lost so far: 33 pounds

2 pounds to go.

While Shaboom is flitting around Spain with expats, 4 and I are playdating with his friends. We end up at a sushi restaurant in Montrose.


Edamame for starters.


Miso.


Sushi.


Lobster Dynamite


Playdating with a couple of 4 year olds at a sushi restaurant involves courage, patience and a lot of apologizing to nearby diners with (and I hate to say this) no sense of humor at all! Some people don't appreciate the precise aim my child took at blowing the paper wrapper off his straw straight into their soup! A trick his Aunt Tammy taught him at the tender age of 2 so he's pretty good at it. (I'm not bragging it's just a fact.) If you were at the table next to us and reading this, I'm sorry.

Thanks Aunt Tammy!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Day 168 from France:
Tapas Bar-Hopping

Shaboom sends us her update from Paris Spain...

I am off on a short jaunt to Seville, Spain...

Did that sound pretentious and condescending enough? I've been hanging out with British expats (who I adore) lately and I'm trying to sound as snooty as them, you know, for the sake of fitting in. Success??

I normally am not a huge tapas fan but, when in Rome, right?!

Vino de Naranja...


Queso de Manchega...


Tortilla de Patatas...


Chorizo...


Sangria...



Tuna Tartar with Strawberries and Balsamic Vinegar Emulsion


A creamy wonderful dessert topped with a chocolate mousse-type layer. My Spanish is a little rusty, and I've never been that good with menus in any language, so I didn't really understand what it was but ordered it anyway and DAMN was it good!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Pigs In A Blanket Controversy

This is 4's plate.
I ate mine without the bun or cheese.

It started innocently enough when Hubby said "I want to make some hot dogs wrapped in bacon tonight."
"Oh! Pigs in a blanket! Yum!" I said.
"That's not pigs in a blanket."
"Yes it is."
"No it's not."
"Yes it is."
"Pigs in a blanket is a sausage wrapped in a pancake."
"My mom used to make pigs in a blanket all the time and they were hot dogs wrapped in bacon held together with toothpicks."
"That's pigs wrapped in pig."
"No, the bacon is the blanket."
"I don't know what your mom was doing but my mom used to make something called chop suey. Now that I know what chop suey really is I know that's not what she made."
"I can't speak for your faux chop suey experience but I know what pigs in a blanket are."
"When you go to a restaurant, and you look at the menu, pigs in a blanket are sausages wrapped in a pancake."
"I've never seen them in restaurants."
(This made him pause for a moment.)
"Are you serious?"
"Well, I haven't been looking for them."

At this point our 4 year old said "Um, guys? Can we just get along and not have any drama?"

We, of course, could not let it drop so we looked it up. Pigs In A Blanket. Turns out we were both right. My momma was just a little more international, making it the UK way.

It's so good I'm not competitive.

GO MOMMA!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Day 167 from France:
Insomniac

Shaboom writes to us from Paris, France...

I don't know why, but ever since SwimSwim and I broke up, I am unable to sleep for more than a couple of hours at a time. I have trouble falling asleep. I have trouble staying asleep. And once I'm awake, I have trouble looking like I'm not asleep.

I don't know if it's the stress or the sleeping alone. Maybe skinny people don't sleep as well as ...um... less skinny people?

A nice result however, is that I see a lot of sunrises - either because I haven't fallen asleep yet, or because I've already woken up.

Here's a particularly lovely sunrise from my apartment in Paris.




Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Day 166 from Burbank- Nothing and Everything

Chili
(Photo by Karen at French Skinny)

Day 166 from Burbank
I'm living in a strange mindset. Food is at the same time nothing and everything to me. Because I get full on French Skinny portions I am free of any restrictions. I daydream endlessly about foods I have forbidden myself in the past. Yet find I really don't want them after all. I'm used to categorizing my diet. Am I floundering in a sea of endless possibilities? It's so strange to get excited about making something decadent but then, once thought out, not really wanting it.

4 and I went to his Auntie Caryn's house today.
She made us chili.
It was delicious.
This was my portion.
I was full.
Strange.
So strange.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Day 166 from France:
Baby I'm Back!

Shaboom writes to us from Paris, France...

I love traveling but it's really inhumane to be deprived of good pastry for that long...


I brought home gifts for friends and as it turned out, I had an extra box of chocolates. I ate about 80% of it in one sitting. Bad, bad, bad... must be nearing that time of the month. *grumble grumble*



I would love to try this in a crêpe. I'll have to save it for the next time I see Obsessed!


The trees are starting to bloom!!!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Spring

"Spring"
(Photo by Karen at French Skinny)

"Momma, I want to make a card for Rachel."
"That's nice."
"She's my girlfriend."
"Buddy, she's 23."
"Yeah."
"You're 4."
"I like her so much my heart hurts."
"I'm sorry Buddy."
"I know. Maybe I should make her 2 cards."
"That's a good idea."
"Just don't tell Mackenzie, Mom. It would hurt her feelings."
"Okay........How many girlfriends do you have?"
"Like 7."

---------------------------------------------

Roasted chicken with rice and veggies.
I was too shocked to do anything creative.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Day 165 from France:
Kiwi Comfort

Shaboom writes to us from Paris, France...

I had a lovely day once I left the doctor's office for a routine poke, I mean blood test.



I walked from the 16th to the Trocadero and took a train to the 15th to meet my favorite Kiwi visiting from London before his upcoming move to Australia. We lunched and window shopped and visited the Montparnasse Cemetary.


It was a beautiful day that I got to spend with someone so dear to me that I've known for 15 years.





This photo of me (with wet, unbrushed hair) at Café Odessa in the 14th was taken by my favorite Kiwi with my iPhone.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day

"Chocolate Croissant"

I found some frozen chocolate croissants at Trader Joe's. You leave them out the night before and in the morning they have defrosted and doubled in size. About 20 minutes in the oven and you have delicious, flakey chocolate croissants. (They have regular croissants too.) I'm not sure if this qualifies as French Skinny but I looked like a rock star as I served them to the guys.

Happy St. Patrick's Day



Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Day 164 from France:
Oh La La

Shaboom writes to us from Paris, France...

I am back home. I ache all over but am happy just to be alive. I'll tell you, all that exercise can't be good for you!

It's my sister's birthday today. Joyeux Anniversaire little sis!!

I had an interesting interview with a hot Frenchie for a "real" job that doesn't include selling clothes or waiting tables.

Here's a photo of him that I borrowed from the internet. Doesn't he look like Clive Owen?! I spent 4 hours staring into his gorgeous green eyes, *ahem* I mean "interviewing" over "lunch" on the terrace of a café in Montmartre.


Unfortunately, I got the impression that he'd rather do unspeakable things to me than work with me side-by-side in an office each day. *sigh* So, I guess I'll keep sending out my résumé...

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Friends

Friends
(Photo by Karen at French Skinny)

Today I got a call from my neighbor (aka Neighbor Wife. Because she's cool and brings me breakfast not because we are in some weird cult.) asking if I would like some freshly baked scones. I love her. I got out the homemade 5 spice Loquat Jam Jennifer made for me and we had a feast............Well, 4 stole half of my scone but I devoured the other half.

I tried to get the recipes for both but Jennifer told me she made up the recipe and used a lot of 5 spice. Neighbor Wife has not responded. She may have used a mix. Oh no!




Lunch was an artichoke dipped in mayo. Again, 4 stole half of it.
I do feed him his own lunch but he prefers mine.

Dinner was a small bowl full of popcorn with butter and parmesan cheese.


(Yes those are Garden Gnome salt and pepper shakers. More on that drama later!)




Monday, March 14, 2011

Day 163 from France:
Off Piste

Shaboom writes to us from Paris, France...

I do not subsist on pain au chocolat and crêpes alone. I just had a wonderful Andorran goat cheese salad in order to celebrate no injuries or death on the slopes. Yay!


A little off-piste...


Ah... there's the piste...

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Joyeux Dimanche

Here's a lovely peak into French life and culture in this city that I love...


If you want to see the Americanized trailer with English subtitles (be prepared, it's a completely different trailer) click here.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

It's just good

"Good"

(Photo by Karen at French Skinny)

Homemade bread, olive oil, roasted garlic, mozzarella, tomato, basil, bacon and a little parmesan on top.

Mmmmmmmmm.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This post was written before the devastating earthquake happened in Japan. My heart goes out to everyone effected by this tragedy. The Red Cross is a good place to start if you want to help.

God Bless.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Day 162 from France:
Not Dead Yet

Shaboom writes to us from Paris, France...

I can't believe I haven't smashed into a tree, or a person for that matter, and splattered my brains (and theirs) all over these mountains yet. I'm impressed by myself right now. If you were to see me swoosh by screaming at the top of my lungs, arms-a-flailing, you would definitely put me at the top of your "next to die" list. Seriously.





I apologize for the lack of artistic merit in the photos. It's hard to simultaneously balance, breathe, not panic (too much,) have the fear of God in you, not get frostbitten fingers, not drop your phone thereby losing it forever AND take pictures standing atop a mound of murderous snow and ice.