Monday, April 14, 2014

Makeover Monday

This is another lovely little piece that started with a frantic e-mail to my partner-with-a-truck.

This did have a door when I got it (see it on the left?), but I quickly took it off.  Well, quickly after my furniture guru adviser thought it was a good idea :-)

Starting building the shelves and shore up the supports.

Shelves done & outside painted!

Trying out drawer knobs....

Finished product!  You can't see this too well, but the inside is painted gray.  It's funny how each of these photos (from my phone) make it look like a different color blue.  For me this was adventurous for a piece I wasn't keeping, but after some Facebook feedback - I took a bit of a plunge...and it worked!  Who knows, maybe the next piece will be a more daring color!

Saturday, April 12, 2014

I like to eat! - The Optimist

I have wanted to try this place forever...and it did not disappoint!  I was a little worried about going on a Sunday early evening with my work clothes on (think t-shirt from a liquor manufacturer with paint on it, old shoes and a sweater with a bleach stain on the sleeve....smh) - and while I was probably the most under dressed person there (that might be an understatement!), I didn't feel like I wasn't welcome.  I think for this post - I'll let the food do the talking.  I loved everything!  Even the fuzzy fruity drink.... (I just realized I forgot to take a picture of our starter: fried clam roll = yes!)


Hushpuppies..I could have eaten the butter with a spoon....

Fuzzy drink with pomegranates in it & a vegetable (I can't remember!)


Dessert (I think it was this...but maybe not as they change their menu daily: CHOCOLATE & FRANGELICO CREMAUX, chantilly cream, hazelnut caramel)
This dessert was smaller than an i-phone and should be shared as it's soooo rich (and delish!)

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

What's Cookin Wednesday - Chicken & Orzo Skillet Dinner

Oh how I love 1-pot meals...ranks right up there with my love of crock-pot meals ;-)  This one hits the spot for sure!


  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 8 cups water
  • 12 ounces uncooked orzo
  • 2 cups chopped tomato (about 2 medium)
  • 2 teaspoons no-salt-added tomato paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 cups baby spinach leaves
  • 3 ounces feta cheese, crumbled (about 3/4 cup) 


1. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken. Sauté 6 minutes, turning to brown all sides. Remove chicken from pan; keep warm.
2. Bring 8 cups water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add orzo; cook 8 minutes or until orzo is al dente. Drain in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1/4 cup cooking liquid.
3. Add reserved cooking liquid, chopped tomato, tomato paste, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and peppers to skillet; cook over medium-high heat for 2 minutes. Add chicken, pasta, and 3 cups spinach leaves, stirring until spinach wilts. Remove from heat; sprinkle with cheese.

This was yummy and the servings were HUGE!  Love that 1lb of chicken is more than enough for this meal.  While my Dear One prefers canned tomatoes, I prefer fresh - this would have been that much better with fresh tomatoes!