Archive for October, 2011

Birthday Weekend = 30

Yes it is true, I am officially 30 years old as of Saturday October 8th, 2011. I do not feel any different and no I am not freaking out. Maybe I will have my breakdown at 40 years old?

My birthday weekend stated with a shopping trip with my mom in Marshall Michigan, where my husband grew up, and in which his family still resides. Marshall is a national historic landmark district, beautiful old homes line the streets and downtown has many shopping and dinning options.

If you go to Marshall you must experience Schuler’s Restaurant and Pub, which has provided fine food and drink since 1909. This is personally my favorite place to dine while in Marshall, the food is always good and the service is excellent. The restaurant portion provides a great atmosphere for a special occasion, while the pub provides a casual area to grab some lunch or late night grub and drinks!

We took advantage of the outdoor seating to soak up the sun one last time before dare I say it – Winter.

I ordered the grilled cheese sandwich and tomato basil soup, while my mom decided on the fish tacos. Both were excellent choices!

After lunch we headed over to the Honolulu House Museum, currently the headquarters of the Marshall Historical Society since 1962. The house was built-in 1860 by Abner Pratt, the first US consul to the Hawaiian Islands. The architecture reflects the first owners love for the tropics with a blend of Polynesian, Italianate, and Gothic Revival, however this style of house did not fare well in the hash winters of Michigan.

The Brooks Memorial Fountain, a lovely Greek Revival structure which features a regular evening color light show. Located at the entrance of the downtown area, this fountain was given to the city in 1930 for its centennial celebration by Harold C. Brooks in memory of his father.

We spent the majority of our time shopping in many of the antique and home interior stores. I ended up getting art deco bookends as a gift from my mom from one of the antique shops. Wine tasting at the Flower Haus/Warner Wines provided a great ending to a wonderful day.

Of course I had to cuddle with the Quinster when I got home.

Saturday started with trail riding with family and friends,then a plane ride with Roy’s uncle, and great food made on the grill by my dad =  A PERFECT 30th BIRTHDAY!! Thanks everyone for making this day so special.

Friends Scott and Kay.

My horse Checkers.

Sunday I made breakfast with my family, and picked pumpkins and vegetables from the garden.

Breakfast was cinnamon waffles with raspberry topping, and sausage.

The end of a wonderful weekend.

October 13, 2011 at 12:56 am 2 comments

Red October Run

The Red October Run was my first 5k, and it turned out to be a great experience. It was nice to have a goal and a feeling of accomplishment, and increase my fitness level at the same time. Roy thought I was trying to kill him by making him run without much training, but he did great also.

Erica Pierce, #292,  34:44 min, 11:12/m pace

Roy Pierce, #293, 32:34 min, 10:30/m pace

I told Roy we should run the 10k next year and he just looked at me like I was crazy, guess that was a NO. I defiantly want to improve my pace and the distance will come naturally to me once I improve cardiovascular wise. So I think that I see the 10k in my near future, at least it would be another goal to strive for.



		

October 5, 2011 at 12:55 am Leave a comment

Perfect Fall Day

Today was beautiful outside, the sun was out, but the air was so crisp and refreshing. Fall is my favorite time of the year, with all of the different colors, and the way the light reflects off of a darker sky to make the landscape so bright.  Well Roy and I survived the 5k run on Saturday, it was very cold outside, but at least it did not rain. I will provide a recap of the Red October Run tomorrow.

I went to visit family this weekend, so I picked up some fresh vegetables from my parents house. I was happy to get some garden tomatoes before the season is over. Of course I incorporated the vegetables (tomatoes, green, red and yellow peppers) into this weeks recipes.

Dinner was delicious, and easy to make.

Sweet and Sour Chicken

INGREDIENTS
(servings 4)
  • 1 pound of boneless and skinless chicken thighs or breasts, cut into 1″ chunks
  • 1 egg white
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (1/4 teaspoon table salt)
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 10-ounce can pineapple chunks (reserve juice)
  • 1/4 cup juice from the canned pineapple
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (1/4 teaspoon table salt)
  • 2-3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon cooking oil
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into 1 inch chunks
  • 1 green bell pepper, cut into 1 inch chunks
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger

Instructions:

1 In a bowl, combine the chicken with the egg white, salt and cornstarch. Stir to coat the chicken evenly. Let sit for 15 minutes at room temperature or up to overnight in the refrigerator.

2 In the meantime, whisk together the pineapple juice, vinegar, ketchup, salt, and brown sugar.

3 Heat a large frying pan or wok over high heat until a bead of water instantly sizzles and evaporates. Pour in the 1 tablespoon of cooking oil and swirl to coat. It’s important that the pan is very hot. Add the chicken and spread the chicken out in one layer. Let the chicken fry, untouched for 1 minute, until the bottoms are browned. Flip and fry the other side the same for 1 minute. The chicken should still be pinkish in the middle. Dish out the chicken onto a clean plate, leaving as much oil in the pan as possible.

4 Turn the heat to medium and add the remaining 1 teaspoon of cooking oil. Let the oil heat up and then add the bell pepper chunks and ginger. Fry for 1 minute. Add the pineapple chunks and the sweet and sour sauce. Turn the heat to high and when the sauce is simmering, add the chicken pieces back in. Let simmer for 1-2 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Timing depends on how thick you’ve cut your chicken. The best way to tell if the chicken is done is to take a piece out and cut into it. If it’s pink, add another minute to the cooking. (I added 1 tablespoon flour at the end to thicken the sauce slightly).

Taste the sauce and add more brown sugar if you’d like.

(Recipe from Simply Recipes)

October 4, 2011 at 2:13 am Leave a comment

Prepared for running rain or shine

After work I went and picked up the run packets, which included our run numbers, t-shirts and a bag. Glad that I will not have to deal with the crowd tomorrow morning. The run starts at 10 am, so we have plenty on time to get our beauty sleep. Hopefully Roy and I will not get to wet since it is supposed to be cold and rainy.

Time for a nice comforting recipe for this cooler weather to warm things up.

Prosciutto-Wrapped Mini Turkey Meatloaves

Ingredients:

(servings 6)

  • 2 tsps. oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 tsp. dried italian seasoning
  • 1 Tbs. honey
  • 1 1/2 tsps. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/3 pounds ground turkey
  • 1/2 cup low-fat greek-style yogurt
  • 1/2 cup crushed crackers (saltines)
  • 6 thin slices prosciutto (3 ounces)
Instructions:
Put oven rack in middle position, heat oven to 450. Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, saute until lightly browned, 4-5 minutes. Add garlic, saute a minute longer, set aside.
Mix egg with italian seasoning, mustard, and Worcestershire sauce.
Place turkey in a medium bowel, add yogurt, crackers, and onion; mix with a fork until evenly blended.  Add egg mixture; blend well.
Turn meat onto a work surface. with wet hands, divide and form into 6 mini loaves. Wrap a prosciutto slice around each loaf. Place on a grid style wire rack set over a foil lined rimmed baking sheet.
Bake until golden brown, about 25 minutes. Remove from oven, let rest for a few minutes. Serve.

October 1, 2011 at 2:19 am Leave a comment


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