Wednesday, July 19, 2017

A Cocktail and a Conversation

It's time for another cocktail and conversation with the Broke and Bookish ladies!  Grab a drink, pull up a chair, and join in the conversation...

This week's question:  What ritual or act helps you feel pulled together?

Jana says:  That's hard because I never really feel pulled together! Haha. My answer would have to be straightening my hair. I've got super curly hair that feels majorly out of control most of the time if I let it go wild, so if taking the 30 minutes to straighten it each day makes me feel much more in control and confident. And that's not to say I don't love going curly here and there, I just love the feel of silky smooth hair I can run my fingers through!

Lori says:  As superficial as it sounds, I feel put together when I put on mascara and moisturizer and my jewelry.  Bonus points for myself if the bed gets made.  :)  If everything else is going to shit, I feel less bad and more human when I do those two (or three) things.

Kimberly says:  Putting on eyeliner and straightening or curling my hair are pretty much guaranteed to make me feel put together and capable of being a functioning human. It's not much, but sometimes it's all I need.

Lauren says:  I'll be completely honest here... putting on my bra. Yup. I don't go anywhere without it on and usually even wear it around my house  even if we don't have company over. And bare feet! Of course I always have shoes on when I leave the house. (I may be from Kentucky, but we aren't always barefoot. Haha.) But I still have to have socks or flip flops on if we have company. I guess I feel exposed or something. I don't know. So I guess this girl has to have things covered up or the day is ruined! Haha. :)

Julia says:  I guess I feel put together when I leave the house in not a t-shirt and jeans and I actually feel like I could pass for being somewhat fashion relevant. I've been trying to do it more lately in case I have surprise meetings with CIOs of major US Healthcare providers and don't end up wearing my dinosaur hoodie again.

What about you?

Monday, July 17, 2017

Recipe--Breakfast Stuffed Green Peppers

I love cooking.  So much.  I'm at the point where I like to do some meal prep on a Sunday and be pretty well set for breakfast and/or lunch for most of the rest of the week.  It just makes my life easier.  I know I'm getting good food with little repeat effort, so I'm less tempted to eat crappy food.  This week I decided to make stuffed green peppers with a bit of a breakfast hint.  My plan is to get four meals out of this recipe, so adjust accordingly.

2 Bell Peppers
1/2 lb Ground Beef
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
Chili Powder, to taste
Garlic Powder, to taste
Onion Powder, to taste
Cumin, to taste
Onion (I used about an 1/8 of an onion, but whatever)
3.5 oz can Green Chiles
Hashbrowns  (I used sparingly, like 1/4 cup, because I'm cutting carbs--you do you)
Grated Cheese  (I used cheddar, but whatever would be good)
3 Eggs
1/4 cup Milk
1/4 Tb Flour

Cut the tops off of the bell peppers.  Set the tops aside.  Remove the seeds and whatnot.

Boil the peppers in water for 5 minutes.  Drain.

Meanwhile, dice up the tops of the peppers and the onion.

This might not be a bad time to start the oven.  350 degrees.

Cook up the ground beef.  Add your seasonings.  Add your pepper tops and onion.  Cook until they look good.

If your hashbrowns need any pre-browning (see package for directions), now would be the time to do that.  After cooking, if needed, add to the meat and veggies.

Add your green chiles.  Add your salsa.  (I think you could totally use Rotel, but I had fresh, homemade salsa that I wanted to use OR jalapeƱos would be a nice addition--the key is use what you like and/or what you have on hand)  Add your grated cheese.  I used approximately a shit-ton of cheddar because I like cheese.

Spray a loaf pan with Pam and put the peppers side by side.

Spoon the mixture in.  If you have extra, just put it in the pan around the peppers.  It's a tasty little bonus.  :)

Mix the milk, eggs, and flour in a separate cup or measuring cup or other receptacle.  Pour on top of the stuffed peppers.  If you added any extra stuffing to the pan, pour a little there too.

OK.  Now...the baking time was where I hit some issues.  I baked covered in aluminum at 350* for 30 minutes.  But the eggs were not done, so I wound up uncovering and adding 10 minute increments for another 30 minutes.  So maybe don't cover them?  Using this as a guideline, just cook them until the egg is set.

Then you can add more cheese on top.  Or not.

Eat up!  Add more salsa or hot sauce or avocado or whatever.

I ate half of one for supper.  My plan is to eat a half at a time throughout the week.  They're nice and savory, so you don't feel limited to eating them at breakfast, which I like.  Especially because I'm more of an eat in the late morning kind of person.

I love tweaking recipes, so if you try any variations, I would love to hear how they work!

Saturday, July 8, 2017

New Top Ten Tuesday Topics For When We Resume In August

Hey everyone! Jamie here! As promised, whilst on maternity leave and waiting for this baby to come out (ahh my due date is in 3 days),  I have put together some new topics for when we resume Top Ten Tuesday officially!

And I'll even do you a solid and post them here so you don't even HAVE to go over to the tab that says Top Ten Tuesday :)

August 15Ten book recommendations for ______________: (Skies the limit here...examples: for Hufflepuffs, for fans of Game of Thrones, for people who don't normally read YA, for animal lovers, for video game lovers, etc.
August 22: Back To School Freebie: anything "back to school" related like 10 favorite books I read in school, books I think should be required reading, Required Reading For All Fantasy Fans, required reading for every college freshman, Books to Pair With Classics or Books To Complement A History Lesson, books that would be on my classroom shelf if I were a teacher, etc.
August 29: Ten Hidden Gem Books in X Genre: Pick a genre and share with us some books that have gone under the radar in that genre!
September 5: Ten Books I Struggled to Get Into But Ended Up Loving or Ten Books That Were A Chore To Get Through or Ten Books I've Most Recently Put Down (the theme is...books you had a hard time with...tweak it how ever you need)
September 12: Throwback Freebie: Ten Books I Loved During The First Year I Started My Blog, Favorite Books Published 5 or 10 or 15 Years Ago, Ten Older Books I Forgot How Much I Loved, etc. etc. Tweak however you want!
September 19: Top Ten Books On My Fall TBR List
September 26:  Ten Books That Feature Characters ____________: Examples: Ten books that feature black main characters, characters who hold interesting jobs, characters who have a mental illness, characters that are adopted, characters that play sports, etc, etc. Can't wait to see what you all come up with! the event that you are coming up with your own Top Ten Tuesday posts while we are on's a linky to share them with us and others in the meantime!

Thursday, July 6, 2017

A Cocktail and Conversation

This week's question:  What is you favorite thing to cook and why?

Bridget said:  Probably my mother-in-law's macaroni and cheese recipe!! So easy and so delicious. Perfect for potlucks and picnics!

Kimberly said:  I'm not sure if it can be called a recipe, but I love making pasta salad. It's pretty simple, but so so yummy! It's perfect this time of year too, fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, pepperoni and cheese with Italian dressing.

Lori said:  I love experimenting with pasta, but in the interest of something different--my favorite meal to make is fried chicken, fried potatoes, and corn bread.  I love the amount of time it takes to make the whole meal.  And my fried chicken recipe is just damn good.  :)

Jana said:  I love this chicken!  Sooooo good! I use a glass dish for baking instead of the foil, and it's crunchy and amazing.

What about you?

Saturday, July 1, 2017

June Favorites, July TBR

Here are our favorite books for June:

Lauren said:  The Lathe of Heaven by Ursula K. Le Guin  I've always been a big Le Guin fan, so it was just a matter of time before I got around to reading this one. And I loved it. A man's dreams literally come true. Whatever he dreams becomes reality. Imagine dreaming of the ninja turtles and when you wake up... BAM! There are friggin ninja turtles everywhere! Or what I'd you have a nightmare where we live like Kevin Costner from the movie Waterworld? Bummer for the world when you wake up, right? We don't have control over our dreams and neither does the main character of this book who is terrified of dreaming. Wouldn't you be?

Lori said:  I would say The Green Mile, but I already listed that for this week's TTT, so I'll mention Blonde by Joyce Carol Oates.  I'm still reading it, but I am loving it!  The novel is a fictionalized account of Marilyn Monroe--one of my favorite actresses and one of the most interesting people I've heard about.

Here are our top TBR for July:

Lauren said:  The Wanderers by Meg Howrey  I've picked this book up at my local bookstore several times and the put it back down thinking, "I'll buy it when it comes out in paperback." Well, on my last bookstore trip, I couldn't take it anymore and bought it. I can't wait to finish my current read so I can dive in! This book follows several astronauts put in a 17 month realistic simulation of traveling to Mars. You know some crazy stuff is going to happen and I've got a front row ticket!

Lori said:  Aside from textbooks (yay, summer school [not]), I definitely want to read Masters of Sex: The Life and Times of William Masters and Virginia Johnson, the Couple Who Taught America How to Love by Thomas Maier.  It's been on my shelves for a while, so I'm taking it to Chicago with me.  I've seen a couple of episodes of the TV show and it's a really interesting narrative about something that actually happened.

What about you?
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