Friday, November 26, 2010

The top ten reasons you love me so...aka it's my birthday!

It's my birthday today and I'm feeling a little here are my top ten reasons why you love me.

Reason #10:  If the mood strikes me, I will jump up and down through the aisles of the grocery store.  Sometimes, if the store isn't too busy, my husband will jump with me, but don't tell him that I told you that.

Reason #9:  I sing and dance while driving.  So if you see me on the road just pretend that you don't know me because I'm sure that I look like a total dork.

Reason #8:  I bake cookies for no reason other than I felt like eating one.

Reason #7:  For the right pair of shoes, I will risk getting caught sneaking them in the house past my husband. 
Him: "Are those new honey?"  
Me: "These old things?  Of course not!  I've had them forever..."  
Him: "Really?"  
Me: "No, they're got me.  I couldn't not buy them though.  They just looked so good on my feet!" 
Him: "I need to figure out how to make more money..."

Reason #6:  I love bows on presents.  If you ever receive a present from me, it will have a giant handmade bow on top.

Reason #5:  I love Christmas.  I will probably be the first person you know to put up their Christmas tree and the last to take it down...for this reason I have a fake tree.  Last year my tree was up until

Reason #4:  Books are my favorite.  If you need someone to read a book and then tell you about it, I'm your girl!

Reason #3: My favorite color is pink, but most of my wardrobe is black.  Hey, black always looks good.

Reason #2:  It doesn't take much to make me happy.  A cocktail and a dessert will do....or a new pair of shoes.  I wear a size 8.5 in case you were wondering.

Finally, the most important reason why you love me is....because I'm me...and you love it.  You know you do!

Happy Birthday to me and Happy Black Friday to all of you!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Simply Spaghetti

I love spaghetti.  The simplicity of the flavors.  The texture of the pasta.  The stretch of the melted mozzarella cheese, which is a must have with spaghetti.  All of this equals love to me.  Spaghetti is my ultimate comfort food.  My mom used to make it all the time for me as a child and now, ironically, I make it all the time for her since we work

I've always wanted to do one of those photo step-by-step recipe posts, but never got the chance.  So the last time that I cooked up a batch of spaghetti I made sure that I took pictures.  Here it goes...

Spaghetti a la Arielle

2 (15-16oz) cans of diced tomatoes; 1 can tomato paste (I like my sauce on the thicker side, so I add it to thicken things up.  If you don't, then just omit it.); 1 can olives, sliced.
2 (15-16oz) cans of tomato sauce.  
(Yes, this is the giant can of tomato sauce from Costco.  It's something like 106  It's cheaper to buy the huge can than a bunch of little cans, especially when I cook like 4 batches of spaghetti at once.  Who would eat all that spaghetti, you ask?  The kids at my mom's daycare.  They can pound some spaghetti like nobody's business.  I usually cook a huge batch once a month and freeze it in quart sized bags.  That way I can bust it out whenever they ask me for it.)
1 medium round onion, chopped; 6 cloves of garlic, minced; 1 bell pepper, chopped; 4 teaspoons of Italian seasoning 
Spinach (whatever amount you deem appropriate), chopped; 1 tray of mushrooms (not pictured because I forgot to take a picture of it...oops.), sliced
1 package mild Italian sausage sliced and quickly browned (to keep it from falling apart in the sauce while simmering later on)...
then removed before being fully cooked.  Don't worry it'll get thrown back into the mix in a minute.
1 pound ground turkey, browned.
Once the turkey meat is browned add the sausage into the pot.  Stir them together, so that they can become better acquainted with one another.
Add in the onion, garlic, bell pepper, and the Italian seasoning.  Season with salt and pepper.  Cook over low to medium heat until the onion and bell pepper are soft.  (I have found that adding the seasoning, salt, and pepper at this point helps to flavor the turkey a little bit.)
Add in tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, and tomato paste.  Stir to incorporate.  Simmer for a bit while you finish chopping the spinach (Am I the only one that doesn't remember all the ingredients that I needed to prep?  I always forget one and end up frantically chopping something every time that I make  Add in the chopped spinach.  Simmer until the spinach cooks down a bit, about 5 minutes or so.  Then add in the sliced mushrooms and olives.
Your spaghetti sauce should look like this, at this point.  Taste it and adjust the seasonings as needed.  Start boiling the water to cook your pasta in.  (Whole wheat noodles are a staple in my house.  Yum!) Simmer until your noodles are done and you are ready to serve it.

*Note:  This spaghetti sauce freezes well.  So make a huge batch and freeze it like I do.  Then you'll have pre-made sauce for spaghetti, or lasagna, or baked spaghetti.  Mmmm...I love spaghetti.  Did I say that already?

You can't screw up spaghetti, so don't be afraid.  Well, if you burn it that would be bad.  Don't burn it!  If you do, quickly pour it into a new pot, being careful to avoid scraping any of the burnt part off from the original pot.  Usually doing that will save a burnt dish, but please try your hardest to avoid that.

Also, don't over salt it.  I did that once because I didn't feel like tasting the sauce and I forgot how salty olives can be.  Let's just say my husband was none too  He ate it, but with a lot more noodles than normal.  I guess to combat an over salted pot of spaghetti you can always add more tomato sauce and Italian seasoning, but your sauce will just be less meaty and thick.  Learn from me

Spaghetti, to be eaten correctly, must be topped with melted mozzarella cheese and served with a side of warm garlic bread.  If not, then it's not spaghetti.  It's just sad noodles in a

Happy hump day y'all!

PS.  My birthday is in 9 more days!  Yes, the count down is starting already. :)

Friday, November 12, 2010

Mirror, mirror on the wall...

Do you have a magic mirror in your home?  You know, the one that makes you look like you but on super model steroids?

I have one in my living room.  It's magical.  It makes me look 10 pounds lighter and about 20 times more toned than I really am.  I love it.  I feel more like myself when I gaze into it, which happens to be around 10 times a

Am I lying to myself?  Of course I am.  Will I stop?  Not any time in the foreseeable future.

I tried to take a picture of what it looks like for you guys, but the photos just don't do it justice.

Okay, I'll show you the photos that I took, but be warned, they aren't very good.  Concentrate on my abs and not on the mess in the background that you can see reflecting in the

With flash.  Not the best picture, but you can kind of see what I am talking about.

Without flash.  Yes, those are shopping bags and my Halloween costume in the  I've said it before and I'll say it again, cleaning is Hades.  Why clean today when you can clean tomorrow, right?

Do my abs look like that in real life?  Hell to the no!  But in that mirror, with that lamp for lighting, I look like I should be on the next Bowflex  I love this mirror and am never parting with it ever!

So the next time that you are beating yourself up over eating a cookie just come on over to my house (Please excuse the mess.) and stare into the magic mirror.  You'll feel a thousand times better, even if it is just the lighting that causes the super model effect.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Channeling my inner dork...

A friend sent this to me the other day with the message, "This made me think of you."  I'm not really sure how to take that.  Okay, okay...I'm a huge dork, so this picture does kind of speak to my character.

So ready for a day off tomorrow!  Not that it's been a particularly trying week or anything.  It's just that I'd rather be doing the opposite of working.  I'm probably going to Dougie right out the door at quitting time...all the way on over to the

Have a great Veteran's Day bloggies!  Don't forget to do something nice for a veteran. :)

Friday, November 5, 2010

Halloween Weekend 2010

You all know that I've been planning and preparing for Halloween all month long...maybe even a little longer than that with the fitness goals.  I was so excited.  I was looking good, had my costume all planned out.  Basically Cinderella on her way to the ball at that point.  Then the unthinkable happened.  My husband got sick.  Junk, junkie, junkness.  I know it's not his fault that he got sick and he felt really, really, I mean REALLY bad about it, but it still kind of put a damper on my Halloweenie-ness.

Not too much of a damper though because I still went out without him.  Hey, I had made plans already.  We were committed!  I left him home with a few cans of soup and a can opener.  He was sick, but not sick enough not to be able to work the microwave.  He's a big boy.  Plus, I think that he would have felt worse if I stayed home with him after working so hard on putting together my costume.  So I went out for him.  That's my story and I'm sticking to

A few friends and I met up at Ocean Club on Friday for a costume party.  We had fun, danced a bit, drank a little, and then like old people we dug out by  It was a Friday!  I worked all day before that...I know, for shame. 

Okay so it's time for the costume unveiling...

L to R: Adam (Don Draper, from Mad Men), Jenna (Marilyn Monroe), and Me (Cancan dancer).  A photographer at the club took this one.  Thanks "La Cutie"!  It's a cute picture of all of us.  I might just have to print this one out. 
 Here's one of Adam and Jenna that I took with my phone, so excuse the bad quality.  Don't they look so cute together?  (I kind of missed my husband at this point.)  They're our married friends.  Isn't it strange how after you get married you refer to your friends as either married or single?
We saw an old high school buddy, Marques.  He's Clark Kent.  He also frequents the gym.  You can't really tell by this picture, but he looked super buff in that well fitted Superman
Rhandi (the Greek Goddess on the left) is also a high school buddy.  She invited us out to the club that night.  I think that it was her friend Kristen's birthday that night.  Kristen is the cop on the right.  Thanks for getting us in with no cover Kristen!

Speaking of cops...I think the costume for Halloween 2010 was sexy lady cop.  There were like a million of them at the club that night!
Rhandi and I.  Again taken with my phone, so sorry about the quality.  You can see my skirt.  I sewed that!  I even tied all the bows.  My mother was so proud, mostly because she didn't have to sew it for
I was given a special request to show the shoes that I was wearing.  (Hi Pharris and Aunty Wyn!)  These are by Paris Hilton.  I know!  Who knew that the girl had some taste?  Black satin pumps, with hot pink soles, and rhinestone studded spike heels.  How could I say no to those?!?  Probably, I and every tranny showgirl have  Just a joke, but seriously...  
(Yes, those are my legs.  This photo was taken by Joanne Barrett from Island Style Images.  I did a photo shoot with her earlier this year.  She's located out in the North Shore and totally rocks!  Check her out for your next family photo session.  You won't be disappointed!)

On Saturday morning, Jenna and I went to a Zumba-thon put on by Kulia at Maunawili Elementary School.

Here we all are after the two hour Zumba-thon.  I really need to start taking pictures before exercising.  I, well I guess we all, would have looked a lot better if I had done  Oops.

Kulia teaches the best Zumba class in Kailua.  I daresay the best on the island.  She's a super fun girl with a great personality that totally shines through to her teaching.  I always have a good time at her classes.  She's there at the elementary on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6:15pm-7:15pm.  Class is $5 at the door.  Zumba, zumba!

On Sunday we had a first birthday party to attend to for Carly fries.  My husband was still sick, so I was the family  Being a Halloween baby, she of course had a costume party.  I reworked my costume to make it kid party appropriate and ended up being a punk rock ballerina.

Happy 1st birthday Carly fries!  Hopefully you like cake a little more next

All in all, a full weekend indeed.  And wouldn't you know my husband was all better on Monday.  Such is life. huh?

Hope you all had a fun and safe Halloween!