Monday, December 10, 2012

Hello Again!

Well HELLO again! My apologizes for leaving you all hanging for quite some time, but life has been busy busy! After talking with some girlfriends the other night I decided that I should start blogging again, or at least make an effort to post at least a couple times a week.

Please stay soon to come!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

May Day!

Happy May Day!!

Seeing as it is my birthday and "May Day" I felt it was essential to drop in and say hello! First of all I must admit that 24 hasn't been all too spectacular. Yes it is another year of being 'older and wiser,' but honestly a gentleman asked me if I was 19 at work today. Apparently I'm not looking all too older....haha. Anywho....I was fortunate enough to be scheduled as the AM Bartender at work today (first day alone!) and overall had a smooth and easy going shift. I've been learning that bartending is just another aspect of the restaurant world that I have had yet to endeavor and after two training shifts I have become more comfortable with the flow and organization of it! Since I only worked until 5 pm, Kyler and I decided to venture out for dinner for my birthday! Ann Arbor has some spectacular restaurants and venues to check out, but we decided to go back to on of our favorites....The Earle! The atmosphere is low key, dark, and always comprises of a live pianist or band. Overall the evening was very relaxing..just how I wanted to spend my birthday after a long weekend at home!

This past weekend Kyler and I drove back to Madison to celebrate both of our birthdays and Nina/Brad DeVault's wedding! We ended up seeing a ton of great friends and visiting with our families most of the weekend. I had forgotten how long it had been since I had seen some of my classmates from high school. Good memories were relived and lots of dancing occurred! Unfortunately I am unable to post any pictures from the wedding or most of the weekend because I lost my camera :( I think it fell out of my jacket pocket after leaving the wedding Saturday night. So..long story short I lost a lot of great pictures and will be having to invest in a new camera ASAP!

Today I had the day off from Arbor Brewing Co. I spent this morning catching up on sleep, then tutored, worked out, grocery shopped, and tutored again! At this point I'm kinda beat and have decided to hit up hulu to catch up on Grey's Anatomy. Who would have thought I would still be watching this crazy show a bazillion seasons later!!  Hope everyone has a great night and is having a chance to enjoy the warm weather! :)

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Pure Michigan

Good Morning and Happy Wednesday! I thought I'd take this hour before work to check in with everyone and fill you all in on what has been happening in my life the past couple of weeks. I've recently taken on two part-time tutoring jobs for local families here in the Ann Arbor community. One of the boys is in 7th grade and has been testing me on my math skills, while the other is fifth grade and is being home-schooled. I've taken on the role of his English teacher which has been a great experience so far! Between work and tutoring Kyler and I have been spending time at some of the local trails running, investigating some of the local cafes and coffee shops, and cooking up a storm! Lately we have been cooking a lot of fish and shrimp dishes...Kyler has mastered a spicy shrimp dish that we have already made 4-5 times (recipe soon to come!) The pictures below include Coconut Crusted Tilapia with Garlic Roasted Potatoes and Veggies, as well as, Blackened Catfish with Mashed Cauliflower and Steamed Asparagus/Broccoli.

Last week my parents took Thursday and Friday off to visit. Luckily the weather shaped up around here so we took advantage of the warm temperatures and did some site seeing! We had a blast checking out some of Northern Ann Arbor on Thursday, as well as, checking out Arbor Brewing Co! Later in the evening we dined at Mani's for pizza and appetizers! On Friday we decided to bum around town, stop in at some shops, and travel to Yipsilanti, MI to visit Corner Brewery. Corner is the sister Brewery to Arbor and I had been wanting to check out the venue for awhile. It turned out to be a blast! We all tried new beers that Arbor doesn't carry and attempted a game of chess. Overall, it was so great to see my parents and have them visit! So glad they could make it!
   Kyler was kind enough to purchase a liter for himself and the smallest mug for me!

This past week has been busy busy! Sunday I had a work outing with the Brewery. The owners take a yearly outing with all of the staff to some of the local microbreweries in the area: Bells, Arcadia, and Dark Horse. Ultimately it was a long Sunday Funday full of bus riding, brewery tours, frisbee, and drinking. It was a great day, but definitely made work on Monday a lonnnnnggg one!

    The crew @ Black Horse Brewery! Best Blueberry Stout Ever!
Now I'm just getting all packed up for a weekend at home! Kyler and I are heading back to Madison on Friday to celebrate Nina and Brad's Wedding and both of our birthdays. We are both really looking forward to seeing lots of family and friends- can't wait!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Kerrytown Adventures

Good Morning All! So happy to wake up to another bright and sunny day! Yesterday I had the day off and took the opportunity to hit up a local tea/coffee shop in Kerrytown to read and eat lunch. Kerrytown is a small section in Downtown Ann Arbor that houses the local farmers market and shops. In a way it reminds me a lot of the third ward in Milwaukee. I found Ann Arbor's food co-op, tea haus, indoor farmers market, and thrift shops!

As I stated in yesterday's post I'm totally hooked to the last book, Mockingjay, of the Hunger Games Series. I started of my day at Sweetwaters Coffee and Tea Shop reading. The venue was nice and quiet..before I knew it I had been reading for over an hour and a half. I'm telling ya, you gotta read these books!

I decided to munch on a salad for lunch. I walked over to the indoor market and found a great sandwich and salad stand. The sun was out and the weather was really nice so I decided to eat outside and people watch.

Lunch was delicious! My salad had lots of veggies including grilled onion and peppers with goat cheese! After some more reading and eating I ventured into the market to check out some of the local shops. I ended up finding a wine shop, spice store, vinegar/oil distillery, vintage clothing, and a kitchen supply store!

I kind of went nuts in this store! I found so many gadgets and baking supplies....completetly not in my budget right now, but its always fun to dream. I finished up my afternoon by walking to the local "Treasure Mart." I know my Aunt Cherie would be proud of this stop. This local antique and thrift mart is full of furniture, books, dishes, decor, etc. Unfortunately my parking meter was running low so I wasn't able to stay long, but I have all intentions of going back and exploring. (GOOD PLACE TO GO WITH MOM, CHERIE, GRANDMA, AND DIANA WHEN THEY VISIT..HINT HINT)

Considered bringing home the pink furniture....not sure how Kyler would have felt about it though....haha

Overall I had a really great day! I was able to finish my evening with a run, home cooked meal, and Modern Family! I also received an email back for a part-time summer teaching is sounding pretty promising :) Yay! Have a great Thursday everyone!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Asian Slaw

Today was Asian Slaw making day!!!! My friend Mandy made his slaw this past winter and I fell in love with it. I found the recipe while exploring Pinterest over the weekend and decided to try it. I adapted the recipe here and there, but overall it turned out fantastic!

First I made the peanut dressing which was really straight forward and easy.

You'll need:

¼ cup honey
¼ cup vegetable oil (I used canola oil...about an 1/8 cup)
¼ cup unseasoned rice vinegar*
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon Asian sesame oil (I didn't have this so I wasn't able to include it...still tasted great!)
1 tablespoon peanut butter
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon Sriracha sauce (I used 1 1/2 teaspoon..I like SPICY)
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 large garlic clove, minced

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl ......

Stir until consistency is smooth and peanut butter is fully mixed in. I used a whisk to assist with this.

In another large bowl mix all of the slaw ingredients. For the slaw mixture you'll need:

4 cups prepared shredded coleslaw (I used 5 cups)
2 cups prepared shredded carrots (I used 3 cups)
1 red pepper, thinly sliced into bite size pieces
1 cup pre-cooked, shelled edamame (available fresh or frozen)
2 medium scallions, finely chopped
½ cup chopped salted peanuts (I didn't have peanuts..adds great flavor if you have them!)
½ cup loosely packed chopped fresh cilantro

Mix all of these ingredients in a bowl and top with dressing.

Mix slaw and dressing need to over stir. Let the slaw marinate overnight in the fridge for best flavor! *Add more or less of seasoning depending on your taste...I ended up adding more soy sauce.

This recipe makes about 6-7 servings so be prepared for lots of slaw! I may or may not have had some for breakfast this morning.....I couldn't wait for lunch! Hope you enjoy...let me know what you think.

Now off to do some reading, cleaning, and finish the afternoon with a nice run. Looks like its going to be a gorgeous day here :)

<3 K

Sunday Funday!

This past weekend I was fortunate enough to have Friday, Saturday, and Sunday off from the brewery. Seeing as Kyler and I haven't had a chance to get out and explore Ann Arbor as much as we've wanted we thought this would be a great opportunity to do just that! Friday night we dined out at a staple restaurant here in Ann Arbor- The Earle. My camera died before we went out to dinner so I wasn't able to take any pictures, but I think we honestly had one of the best meals ever at this establishment. Kyler enjoyed a filet while I enjoyed scallops! The servers were kind enough to recommend some bars and establishments to stop at for after dinner drinks. We met some great people and had a blast...overall Ann Arbor is going to be a good fit!

As for Saturday and Sunday we took time to organize the apartment some more, run, read, and cook! I've convinced Kyler into reading the Harry Potter series. I'm finishing up the Hunger Games...seriously can't put it down! We made some Spicy Shrimp Fajitas Saturday night and watched a horror film.

Kyler has continued to recieve shipment after shipment of sample shoes for his new job. Bottom line, we've gotten to know our FedEx man quite well! He even requested that we don't move to the second or third floor! With all of these samples there is a lot of organizing to do. I offered to help Kyler go through his samples on Sunday...this is what it looked like!

Funny thing is...I just received seven more boxes (LARGE BOXES) yesterday afternoon! I don't know if this one bedroom is going to be able to handle this many shoes! ;)

All in all we had a great weekend full of exploration and relaxation. This week Kyler is in San Antonio and I'm starting my new work schedule. Be in touch soon!

<3 K

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Falling into Place...

I apologize that this post has no photos, but there will be some to come! Promise! Just wanted to update everyone with the recent happenings in my life. It has been officially one week since I've moved to Ann Arbor and I've been job hunting like crazy! I'm pretty sure half of Ann Arbor has my resume in their hands...haha. But it paid off because I am officially employed at Arbor Brewing Co. As of Monday I accepted a serving position at the local BrewPub and started training as of yesterday! The restaurant and pub brews their own beer in our facility and sells it locally in Ann Arbor. As I continue to hunt down a teaching/education related job I wanted to start something part time. I'm looking forward to meeting new people and learning more about Ann Arbor's restaurant industry! I love going out to eat and trying new places so I'm sure I'll get the scoop of some good stops through co-workers and word of mouth.

Our apartment is finally coming together! I'll post pictures shortly...unfortunately my USB cable for my camera was lost in the move so I'm still trying to hunt it down! I went for a 5 mile walk/run today and explored the University of Michigan stadium and athletic facilities. I was blown away by their facilities....similar to Madison their stadium is surrounded by their field house, softball field, practice fields, etc. After I continued on my run I stopped at the local grocery store to pick up a few items. I also stopped by Great Harvest Bread Co! This is going to be without a doubt my new go to for fresh bread. Upon walking in I was offered a slice of any fresh bread on display. I fell in love with their Nine Oat Whole Wheat loaf with mimosa jam! Can't wait to dig into it tomorrow morning.

Again, I'll post pictures as soon as I find that dang cord! I gotta get ready for my second day of training at the pub. Hope everyone has a great night and I'll be in touch soon :)

<3 K

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Sweet Potato Black Bean Soup

I decided to make this soup for my family before I left on Wednesday. My mom had made the recipe before and I found it to be quite delicious. I know many people are accustom to eating chili with meat in it, but you gotta give this one a shot! It has great flavor and had just the right amount of spice.

1 T + 2 tsp EVOO
2 Medium Sweet Potatoes Peeled and Diced
1 Large Onion
4 Cloves Garlic
2 T Chili Powder
4 tsp Cumin
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp Chipotle Chili (dried smoked jalapeno if you can find it)
2 1/2 cups Water
2 (15 oz) Cans of Black Beans- Rinsed
14 oz can Diced Tomatoes
4 tsp Fresh Lime Juice

The recipe is quite simple. You can prep your ingredients ahead of time by peeling and dicing the sweet potato and onion, draining and rinsing the black beans, pressing the garlic, juicing the lime, etc. To begin cook the sweet potatoes and onion in EVOO until soft (approx. 4-5 min).

Then add garlic and other spices- stir 30 seconds and then add the water. At this point you will cover until sweet potatoes are tender (10 min).

Once the sweet potatoes are tender (make sure they aren't too soft and mushy) add beans, tomatoes and lime juice. Bring soup to simmer on high heat for 1-2 minutes, then reduce heat and simmer on low (uncovered) until slightly reduced (5-7 min). Waaaalaaa! Soup Complete!

*Please note that depending on the size of your sweet potatoes you may need to add or take away. If you like you soup less watery I would recommend using 2/12-3 sweet potatoes. I also enjoy adding jalapeno for a little more spice! I like my food extra spicy so I suggest holding on the jalapeno until you try your first batch.

This recipe is great whether you want to eat it right away, save it in the fridge for a couple of days, or freeze it!


Monday, March 19, 2012

Michigan Bound!

Hello All! I know I have been absent for quite some time, but with my current move and transition to Michigan I decided it would be in my best interest to continue my blog. Seeing as I have an abundance of friends and family who want me to keep in touch with them I thought that this might be a good way to keep them updated on my new adventure! As many of you know I am picking up my life and moving to Ann Arbor, MI! Kyler has recently accepted a new job offer there and I decided that I was ready for something new in my I'm going with! These past couple of weeks have been a whirl wind, but now that we have officially moved into an apartment and started unpacking, things are starting to fall into place. I'm currently on the "job hunt." I hope to find something in the teaching and educational field, but I'm keeping my options open as I apply for multiple job opportunities.

Within the upcoming weeks and months I hope to keep you all up to date on our transition to Ann Arbor. So far we have decided that it feels quite familiar and is very similar to Madison! Being both a college and liberal city, I have a feeling that we will have an easy time adjusting. The past weekend has allowed us the opportunity to explore various parts of downtown, visit some local breweries, and dine at some local restaurants. In the upcoming week I hope to bike and run around town to see more of its venues and shops!

Here are some pictures of the past week and the move!

Going Away Dinner At Coopers Tavern on the Square!

St. Patty's Day with the Crew in MadTown!

Gorgeous Day with awesome friends!

Thanks to our moms for helping with the move!

Our lovely new apartment....more pictures to come!

Our well organized UHAUL....full of 'our' stuff....okay okay...all of my crap! haha

Looks like the rest of today is going to be comprised of working out and applying for jobs! Be in touch soon!