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Food Picturebook: NYC + Houston

[N Y C] 

B R O W N ‘ S   B A G E L S 

Bagel is obviously a must in the city. I only got one, but could have eaten here every day. It was a cute little bakery with amazing coffee.

M A S S O N I 
at Arlo Nomad

Unfortunately I started feeling sick about halfway through the trip – cold, allergies, probably both – so one night I grabbed a pizza in the restaurant in my hotel and ate it in bed. How could you not, with these views?? The pizza was not traditional thin crust new york pizza, but it was incredible – pepperoni, jalapeños and honey. Wowww.

L E V A I N  B A K E R Y 

If you know me at all, you know I have to fit Levain in to any NYC trip. I’m drooling again just thinking about how amazing this cookie was from just last week.

E A T A L Y 

Snagged one more pizza before leaving the city in one of my favorite spots – and all I could think about was how I’ll be eating REAL Italian pizza in a MONTH!

A I R P O R T   F O O D 

Yes, you read that right – airport food. This was basically cheese toast with prosciutto and arugula on top. Did I mention I was stuck in the airport for 7 hours? I should have ordered another one, because this is some of the best airport food I’ve ever had.

[H O U S T O N]

G U R U   B U R G E R S  +  C R E P E S 

With a name like that of course we had to get a burger and a crepe! (and shared both!) Burger was delicious, crepe was okay, but beautiful.

N I N F A ‘ S 

Okay if you’re ever in Houston this is the MUST-GO place. It is super authentic and absolutely delicious. You see (and smell) them making the tortillas as you walk in. I got Tacos Al Pastor with fresh grilled pineapple and it was the best thing ever.

T O R C H Y ‘ S   T A C O S 

Does this look familiar from my Austin Food Picturebook? Ha – Torchy’s is officially a favorite! This time I got the Trailer Park “trashy” again and tried The Independent loaded with veggies. Both were amazing as usual, and so was the queso, as usual. Who can I petition to get a Torchy’s in NWA?!

xo xo

You might also enjoy: Food Picturebook: Austin, Food Picturebook: LA

Clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose 

Is it strange that domesticity can sometimes bring me so much joy?

Here I am – home after a long week of traveling and taking off again at 6am tomorrow – dinner is in the oven, wine in hand, a wonderful weekend has been had by all including worn-out puppy, and I’m folding towels, and I’m just happy. 

Is that strange? That a distinct happiness hit me while folding towels? 

I hate this expression, but my heart is just so full. Life is busy and chaotic, but these Sunday night moments are my favorite. 

Though I may leave again in the morning, tonight I count my blessings and am so very thankful to be home and to be here. 

                              xo xo

PS – Alabama Shakes is also currently playing on the record player. Favorite song: This Feeling

Enjoy: https://g.co/kgs/t3nWkG

This Thing We Call Life

My blog has been suffering because of two reasons – I’m busy, and I’m exhausted.
But you know what, it’s great.

And for all y’all with kids reading this I know you’re thinking I don’t even know the meaning of the words busy and exhausted yet, and you’re more than welcome to go ahead and think that. But for the life stage I’m in – I’m busy, and I’m exhausted.

A few things to note:

  1. Work is crazy busy. Crazy, crazy busy. Non-stop when I’m at the office, and partial-stop when I’m at home. I struggle with trying not to think about (or dream about!) work after I’ve left the building, but it is so hard. If anyone has tips to share, please do.
  2. I’ve started working out in the mornings, and I’ve been doing it consistently for a month now. I’m waking up an hour earlier than usual – something I never, ever thought possible. But hey, “It always seems impossible until it’s done” right? This deserves another blog post entirely on it’s own and will happen at some point, but for now, just another thing to note.
  3. Husband and I have started cooking together more. Instead of basic, easy, sometimes healthy/sometimes not dinners, we’ve been getting HelloFresh weekly and cooking together. This certainly takes more time in the schedule, but it is precious time together, and I’m loving it.

All that to say, my blog has been suffering for good reason. With the time I do have, I’m trying to be more intentional and do things that bring me joy. If I want to spend an entire Sunday afternoon reading a book, why shouldn’t I? If I want to spend the extra hours of sunlight throwing the ball with our dog in the backyard, why shouldn’t I?

It seems to be getting harder and harder to force myself to open up the computer after work and blog. I still enjoy it, and I still love hearing from you that you read my blog and appreciate it, but sometimes I just have to take a break and enjoy what is around me – no screens, no pressure to post.

So, if you don’t hear from me as often for a while, now you know. I’m starting to travel again for work the next few weeks, then we leave for Italy in 6 WEEKS.

It’s a busy and exhausting time, but it is also a glorious time.

xo xo

 

life lately

{enjoying this || time at HOME after a lot of traveling}

{loving this || Husband’s first pedicure!}

{eating this || delicious Italian night at a friend’s house – complete with lots of wine + lots of laughs}

{celebrating this || girl’s birthday at bentonville’s very own speakeasy}

{traveling to this || an AMAZING radiohead concert in Kansas City – with a side of BBQ}

and not pictured: a wonderful few days with my aunt + friend catching up on life, eating great food, drinking cheap wine and seeing a thought-provoking play

xo xo

Gravy-Stuffed Biscuits {recipe}

I can’t say I’ve ever made biscuits and gravy. I love them and they make me think of my Dad and my Husband, but I’ve never made them.

A few weeks ago, Husband tagged me in a Tasty video on Facebook – Gravy-Stuffed Biscuits. They looked DIVINE and we vowed to make them together one weekend.

Well, we stuck to our vow and we are very impressed with ourselves because they were absolutely amazing. They’re so easy, and put a unique twist on the classic breakfast recipe. Next time we have to take a dish to a brunch or have people stay the night with us, these will be first on our list to make.

I hope you enjoy them as much as we did!

G R A V Y  –  S T U F F E D   B I S C U I T S 

Ingredients:

  • 14 oz. ground italian sausage
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1½ cups milk
  • 8 biscuits – we used fluffy, buttery biscuits!
  • S+P and other seasoning options: italian seasoning, basil, thyme, sage

Directions:

1. Cook the sausage over medium-high heat.

2. Reduce heat to medium-low. Sprinkle the flour over the sausage and stir until the flour has absorbed all of the sausage fat and is lightly coating the sausage pieces.

3. Add the milk in several increments while whisking.

4. Season with S+P and anything else you may have – we used some italian seasoning.

5. Cook the gravy for 5-10 minutes, frequently stirring until the gravy thickens. Let cool.

6. Fill a well-greased ice-cube tray with the gravy OR if you’re like us and don’t have an ice-cube tray, you can use liners in a cupcake pan.

7. Freeze for 30-40 minutes.

8. Pre-heat the oven to 350.

9. Flatten out the biscuits, and place a cube of gravy into each of the biscuits.

10. Fold the sides of the biscuit dough around the gravy cube pinching the dough together at the top. Roll the biscuit balls to smooth them out.

11. Place the biscuits on a parchment lined ½ cookie sheet making sure the dough seams are on the bottom.

12. Bake for 20-30 minutes.

If you have leftover gravy, re-heat it and add on top! It would also be good to make gravy without sausage just for dipping.

xo xo

You might also enjoy: Slow Cooker Cuban SandwichesTwo New Easy Weeknight Meals: Butter Chicken + Sloppy Joe Stuffed Peppers

Book Reviews: California, Cults + Catastrophe

What She Knew – Gilly Macmillan: This falls in to the typical genre of books I lean towards – thriller with a lead female character who’s a little shady (a la Gone Girl, Girl on the Train). That being said, I enjoyed it enough, but it didn’t hold up against the others on the list which kept me turning the pages all night. The ending didn’t close all the holes and left you with an uneasy feeling.
Grade: B

Present Over Perfect – Shauna Niequiest: Let me start by saying, I love Shauna Niequiest. She gets me, I get her and she is just wonderful. I love love loved her book Bread and Wine, which I’ve reviewed previously, so I was highly anticipating this book. However, it kind of let me down. There were great points that I totally related to, especially the main point of the book being present over perfect, but it seemed to kind of ramble/drag on. This would have been better in a series of blog posts or a chapter or two of another book.
Grade: B+

The Girls – Emma Cline: This book has been on my list for forever, finally became available at the library, and oh my gosh I devoured it! Set in 1960s California, the book follows a teenage girl who gets caught up in a cult that ends very very badly. I was fascinated not only with the cult, but also the transformation of the main character. If you’re interested in cults at all or just want a unique read that will pull you in, this is for you.
Grade: A+

The River at Night – Erica Ferencik: What I learned from this book: I will never ever ever go white water rafting in a remote location, especially on an annual girls trip – which is exactly the basis of this book. The book started out a little slow and I almost put it down, but then it started getting intense and I just couldn’t turn my eyes away from the horror. And it was literally that, horror. I couldn’t put the book down the last 100 pages, though I’m not sure it’s because I was enjoying it. It still freaks me out to think about it now.
Grade: B+

You can read all my book reviews here.

xo xo

life lately

[Other than my recent trips to Chicago + Austin]

[being fashionistas at this || nwa fashion week]

[cheers-ing this || a new opportunity + great evening with friends]

[waking up to this || minneapolis x2]

[celebrating this || st. patrick’s day in downtown rogers]

[eating this || the best filet and sautéed mushrooms ever at mister b’s for a special date night with husband]

[loving this || sunday morning porch time]

xo xo