Monday, February 29, 2016

Oodles of Zoodles

I received this fun, new (to me) kitchen gadget for Christmas from my friend Pam.  It's a spiralizer and I pulled it out yesterday and decided to give it a go.  It's so easy and fun to use!

I have a recipe for Creamy Pesto Shrimp that calls for linguine pasta.  I decided to use zucchini noodles (zoodles!) and sweet potato noodles instead.  Oh my gosh, it was so delicious.  I can't wait to try more recipes.  I made enough sweet potato noodles that I saved some and oven roasted them for tonight's supper along with asparagus.  I'm pretty sure that sweet potato noodles will become a staple in our house.

Here's the recipe.

Creamy Pesto Shrimp
(adapted from

One medium-sized zucchini
One large sweet potato
1/4 cup butter
 1 cup half & half
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup pesto
8 oz. large shrimp, peeled and deveined

Prepare vegetable noodles with Spiralizer.  Steam them  in a large skillet with just a little bit of water.  Remove from skillet and set aside.

In the same skillet, melt the butter over medium heat.  Stir in cream and season with pepper.  Cook 6 to 8 minutes, stirring constantly.

Stir Parmesan cheese into cream sauce until thoroughly mixed. Blend in pesto and cook for 3 to 5 minutes, until thickened.

Stir in shrimp, and cook until they turn pink, about 5 minutes.  Pour over noodles and serve.  Makes 2 generous servings.

Bon apetit!

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

On my mind

I've been thinking about my Word for the Year, that I chose back in January.  It already seems so long ago.


Oh, geez.

Really?  As busy as I make my life, how can I ever hope to find Clarity in anything?  When I picked the word, I went to an online dictionary and thesaurus, and one of the words that define clarity that struck  me hard is Simplicity.  Light bulb moment. I believe that was my word a few years back. 

Today is my day off and there are so many projects I would love to tackle.  I decided to start with a walk to clear my head.  So I grabbed Lilly and her retractable leash, and my camera because I decided I needed some pictures for this blog.  We headed off to the open space on the edge of town, where I stood at the top of a hill, taking a deep, cleansing breath.  Clarity.

Off we went down the trail, Lilly spastic at the end of the leash, trying to sniff out every bird and duck that had come through, and me looking for the next photo op.  By the time we made it around the pond and up and down a few hills, well, I was happy to find a bench to sit down and take in the view and the sounds of nature.  

The birds sang and chirped along to the sound of traffic on the highway nearby.  The mountains, majestic and beautiful, were a backdrop for condos and a shopping mall.

My thoughts wandered to moments when I find glimpses of clarity.  In my comfy chair -- with the first cup of coffee of the morning, a book of devotions, my journal -- surrounded by the peace and quiet of my home.  It is there that my heart sees and feels things clearly.

I'm not suggesting that the answer is to stay home, these are just observations.  But I do know that the answer lies somewhere in finding simplicity.

Maybe next time I'll take the dog and leave the camera.  

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

A Daybook

 It's been ages since I've written a Daybook.  It's one of my favorite posts to write, so here goes.

"Every day is a blank page."

FOR TODAY, Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Outside my window . . .
Dan was out with the snowblower about an hour ago and shoveled the path clear.  This is my view out the window from my desk.  I like that it looks out onto our street.  In the mornings, I see the kids walking to school -- except not today, as school has been cancelled due to the snow.

I am listening to . . .a country music station playing Hell on the Heart by Eric Church.

I am thinking . . .that I'm going to do a lot of desk time today and check lots of stuff off my list! I'm a list maker and a list 'checker'. It feels so productive.

I am thankful . . .for a snow day. And especially for people who don't let the snow stop them and will go into work to keep things running for the rest of us.

In the kitchen . . .the storm started yesterday and I made a crockpot of chili and some garlic bread using my bread machine.  There's lots leftover -- even after sending a bunch of it home with Emily and Marcus.  The bread was awesome, I think I've found a recipe that's a keeper.

I am wearing . . .jeans, turtleneck, slippers.

I am creating . . .another scarf! This one is with big chunky yarn on big needles.  I'm still learning and want to work on just getting the rhythm down, so to speak.  Kind of like hand quilting, knitting takes practice.

I am going . . . nowhere today.  Getting out the chair glue to get some desk work done.

I am wondering . . . what the deal is with the tow truck across the street.  A neighbor's car just got carried away.  I feel like Mrs. Kravitz, remember her?

I am reading . . . The Edge of Lost by Kristina McMorris

Around the house . . . Pioneer Woman has a line of pretty dishes and kitchenware.  My kitchen is pretty well stocked, but I can't resist pretty little bowls, so I bought these.  For less than two dollars each, it was a bargain.  They're the perfect size for a bit of salsa on the side or salt/pepper pinch bowls.  I have a collection of bowls this size, just can't resist.

A favorite quote for today . . .

God speaks to us through our desires. Then as we lay them at his feet, he helps us sort them out and quiets our hearts to accept what He has already prepared. (Rosalind Rinker)

Some of my favorite things . . . valentines, birthday parties, texts from my kids.

A few plans for the rest of the week . . . book club, volunteering, water aerobics, work an extra day to make up for today.

A peek into my day . . .

The Simple Woman's Daybook is hosted by Peggy.  Click here for the link to join in.