Friday, March 30, 2012
Welcome to Favorite Friday....where every week the Treatgirl shares her favorite thing of the week. This week it's Thin Mints. I know....I do loooooooooove my Girl Scout Thin Mints. But actually it's the fact that Cubby SHARED HIS Thin Mints that is my FAV.OR.ITE thing this week.
I volunteer at the cafeteria at his school....and this week when I was in helping he raised his hand. I went over to see what he needed and he handed me two of the Thin Mints I had packed in his lunch that day. He said "Here's a little treat for you Mommy."
Well, my heart about MELTED! That cutie patootie!!! Have a terrific weekend and many wishes for a wonderful random act of kindness :)
Friday, March 23, 2012
Crazy, insanely warm weather we've been having around my neck of the woods these past few weeks. The same temperature's in Chicago and Florida?????? Crazy. Which brings me to my favorite thing this week....my new Air Crazy popcorn popper by Westbend. I treated myself to it a few weeks ago when Cubby and I were having a movie date night. My sister inspired me when I was in New York with her....She got one for her New York apartment. She and my Dad consider popcorn as one of the food groups and have a huge bowl of it as a meal. My dad makes fun of the microwave popcorn I have for the kiddos....he calls it "polyester popcorn". He takes his popcorn very seriously...he gets his corn homegrown from a farmer and has had several different kinds of poppers over the years. Most recently he's hooked on the Whirly Bird. It's kind of like a big saucepan with a lid. It's for the stove and you turn a crank to stir around the kernels in oil. He swears by it. He has a bowl that I gave him years ago that holds enough popcorn to fill a bathtub. And he fills it to the top every time.
Well......I'm very happy with my Air Crazy....I got it at Target for $19.99. When I brought it home and fired it up Cubby was VERY into it. He watched me like a hawk and declared he could do it all himself! It's very deceiving how much just a tiny amount of kernels will yield in popcorn. I love the little butter cup feature on the top too. You can put a few pads of butter in the top and it's melted by the time the popcorn is done popping. My Dad and sister just mist theirs with olive oil....but we haven't gotten into that yet. And they also like to dribble it with Frank's hot sauce???? That's a little too spicy for Cubby. For now we just like it with some melted butter and salt. I've read a lot about how the microwave popcorn is so bad for you....so I'm feeling better that with just a little bit of effort we're having a healthier snack option over here.
I've pinned several yummy popcorn ideas over on Pinterest......check them out and have a terrific weekend.
Tuesday, March 20, 2012
I've been meaning to write this post for a few weeks now....but here we go. My mom, sister and I visited New York City last month for a long weekend. We stayed at my sister's apartment in Murray Hill and look at this terrific view from her window. That is the United Nations building right along the river there.
I arrived a few hours before my mom and sister came in from Vail....it was an early surprise for my Mom's birthday in June. A glorious 60 degree day in late February. Who would have thunk??? Here is another view from her windows of the Chrysler Building. I got out for a walk around before they arrived, found a slice of pizza and checked out her neighborhood.
Mom was surprised and we headed out for the evening. Ventured out to find a cab to SoHo.
Look at the super cute bakery we passed on our way to dinner. My sister took us to a wonderful italian place called Aurora. A fabulous meal and a few toasts for my Mom's birthday. And of course a cupcake at the cute bakery on the way home.
Friday was a blustery, rainy day and most of my pictures were kinda dark....we had a great burger for lunch and then wandered around Chelsea market for the afternoon. Sooooo much to see.....sampled a few cupcakes along the way. Are you starting to see a pattern here???
Saturday we headed back to SoHo for lunch at Balthazar....a french bistro. It was PACKED...but well worth the wait.
We enjoyed our girl lunch very much.
I had eggs and asparagus and my mom had a wonderful chicken salad.
Sister looooved her mussels.
She raved about the bread in the bakery side of the bistro and wanted to get a loaf or two.
So many tempting yummy things.
I felt like I was in Paris again.
Just had to share a picture of this cupcake cart along the way......back in the day when I was a little girl...the carts only sold hot dogs! WOWZA....they've come along way.
On my list of things to do for the weekend, I wanted to stop by Purl SoHo. I follow their blog The Purl Bee (check it out in my sidebar) And can you believe how freaky this is????? One of the owners is a friend of my mom's daughter. She lives in Connecticut!
I was like a kid in a candyshop. LOOK at these yarns!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
My mom inspired me to take up knitting when I was in just 3rd grade....I've had a few spells where I fell away from it...but for the most part I've been a life long knitter. What a great thing to have in your life.
Notice my mom and sisters tall boots and skinny jeans??? I SWEAR I was the only person in NYC with bootcut jeans on!!!! I was obsessed with finding someone without their boots and skinny jeans on.......Nope. Not a soul. I could only pack so much for the weekend....and it was killing me not to have a cute pair of boots with me :(
We headed down toward Times Square next...I found this overwhelming bead shop....I could have spent HOURS poking around in here....
And here we are with the Statue of Liberty. We all have on our long black coats. Everyone in NY wears black. Everyday. All the time.
The Hard Rock.
A view of Times Square.
And Radio City....a favorite place of mine. So many wonderful memories of the Christmas Show and the Rockettes.
I found the Magnolia Bakery on our way over to Rockefeller Center....but honestly, their cupcakes were nothing to write home about. Can you believe the frosting was bitter??????
Rockefeller Center was lite up with twinkling lights...
...really pretty. These pictures don't do it justice.
We wanted to stop for a glass of wine in the Rainbow Room, but it was closed for renovations...so we cozied into this little wine bar instead. A few cheeses and warm olives, along with a glass wine to toast Mom's birthday!
Of course we had to swing through Bloomingdale's.....before sampling more cupcakes from Sprinkles. Voted my favorite in NYC. My sister took us to her favorite pizza place fort dinner right near her apartment. It was thin, crisp and hit the spot after a long day of shopping, sight seeing and sampling cupcakes!
Last on my to-do list was to visit Chinatown. Cubby is VERY crazy about anything Chinese these days.....so I promised I would stop there and take pictures for him. I got him a few souvenirs....he loves the chopsticks the best. He uses them for every meal.
Sister has promised to bring the kids up for a visit this summer. Cub is super excited and wants to spend his whole weekend in Chinatown. He is even taking Chinese lessons starting next month to get prepared!
One last photo of sister hailing a cab for us on our way home.....Thank you sooooooo much for being the perfect host on our NYC weekend. I loved it!
Saturday, March 17, 2012
Happy St. Patrick's Day!!! I'm not Irish, but Chips mum was....and this holiday always reminds me of her :) I made these yummy cupcakes for the kiddos and some friends...
I fished out all of the marshmallows from our traditional box of Lucky Charms cereal I get every year....
...and tried this can of Color Mist too. It worked great!!! I like the way it gave a hint of color, letting some white show through too.... Enjoy this wonderful day everyone...Erin Go Braugh!
Friday, March 16, 2012
Happy Friday! I had an easy time making my pick for my favorite thing this week. My new Batter Pen. I got it at Sur La Table in SoHo on my recent trip to New York City. (I know, I know! I am planning on doing a post of my fun weekend.....be patient :) My sister was browsing for clients and I was tagging along.....when I spied this wonderful thing. I knew instantly I had to have it....and that is saying a lot for me. That normally doesn't happen....I am a thinker, and have to process most everything before I make a purchase....even a little one like this :) Mostly because I don't have much storage space in my kitchen, so everything has to be very useful, and I have to love it...because at this point I usually have to get rid of something to make room.
I'm making cupcakes for St. Patrick's Day tomorrow...so this was my first time using my Cupcake Pen...the label says "Batter Pen"...but we all know what I will be using it for :) NO more drips across the pan or down the sides. It holds the perfect amount of batter for 24 cupcakes...and can easily be used for muffins and pancakes too. I'm so happy. Really. It doesn't take much for me. I give it two thumbs up.
Monday, March 12, 2012
I can hardly contain myself on how excited I am about this Shamrock Shake. Because you see, I am SHAMROCK SHAKE CRAAAAZY at this time of the year. They hang out a big banner on the fence at the McDonald's near to my house when they arrive....I swear it's just for me :) I try soooo hard to be good...trying just to have one or two, but the closer it gets to St. Patrick's Day I start to get a little panicky...knowing they will be all gone for another year. I've been known to cruise the 3 local Mickey D's in my area buying up the last ones and storing them in my freezer so I can pull one out well past the season.....
Well......no longer!!! I am thrilled that I found out how to make them myself! I came across the recipe on Pinterest...and couldn't wait to try one out and put it to the test. Let me just say they are PER.FECT. Yep, PER.FECT. And let me also say I feel like a complete DUMBO that I never figured this out for myself?????? Or maybe it was just as well.......because now I have access to them whenever I want??????
Anyhoo......Here is what you need to make a Shamrock Shake for your lucky little leprechaun:
(This will make enough for two shakes)
3 cups of your favorite vanilla ice cream....I use Kirkland's from Costco
1 1/2 cups of milk
1/2 tsp. of peppermint extract
green food coloring...a few drops, or however green you want it to be.
Combine all ingredients int the blender until smooth. Divide between two glasses, then top with whipped cream.
I'm linked up to Jennifer Junipers Tutorial Tuesday over at Hope Studios....It's the best linky party around....go check it out!
Friday, March 9, 2012
Okay.....I'm on a roll over here......three days in a row, WhooHoo!! I have soooo many things I would love to feature this week because it's been a while since I did a Favorite Friday post....but I'm going to start with these Pop Chips. LOVE THEM! I have seen them around for a while and was hesitant to try them. I can't stand wasting calories on dumb crunchy snacks that taste like cardboard. Well, when I was in New York City last weekend....I saw them in a little corner market and finally decided to try them. I bought them to have as a snack on my flight home. I don't even think they had finished boarding the plane and I was finished with my bag! I got the barbeque ones....they were sooooooooo good!!
I looked for them at my Walmart when I got home....and couldn't find them. But when I was at Costco the other day they had the mega-sized bag of the plain ones. I was a little leary of getting such a HUGE bag....fearing the plain ones would be terrible...but the kids all gave them two thumbs up. I originally thought they were made of popcorn, but they are really potatoes...just not fried or baked......Popped! I have no idea how they do it, but they are very tasty and a much healthier choice for our family. Let me know if any of you have tried them....Have a terrific weekend.
Thursday, March 8, 2012
Honestly, I am still on cloud nine from my second honeymoon while the kiddos were in Vail a few weeks ago. It was sooooooooooo nice! We didn't have a whole lot planned....and I like it that way. Just enough to keep us happy and re-connect. I just love it being the two of us doing stuff here in Pittsburgh that we never get a chance to do. And one of those things is going to the movies. We always make a day of it and head down to the Waterfront. There is a cute little shopping area and tons of restaurants. Also, there are 20 movie theaters and it's the best place in our area to see one. We really didn't have a plan as to what we were going to see. When we walked up to get our tickets hubs wanted to see Safehouse....and, me not so much. I don't like scary, thrilling ones....AT ALL. When I saw This Means War...I remembered Chelsea Handler talking about it on her show....she makes a debut with Reese Witherspoon. Chip was pretty easy going...so that's what we picked.
It was GREAT!!!!!! I'd see it again in a heartbeat!! Lots of action.....a cute little story, cute guys and Chelsea is completely herself and hysterical....I give it two thumbs up....and I quote Chip...."That was cute". We had dinner afterwards at Bravo and it was the perfect date night.
We had dinner reservations at a wonderful restaurant in downtown Pittsburgh to celebrate our anniversary....but at the last minute we got a call from a friend to join them at the Heart Ball.....a huge charity event in our area. Sure....why not???? A wonderful cause, a chance to get dressed up...dinner, dancing and a glass or two of wine. It was such a nice night!!
Tuesday, March 6, 2012
Seriously.....it's felt like just a week, or two at the most since I last posted here at Treatgirl....but when I started having people emailing and texting me to see if I was okay...I realized it's been waaaaaay too long. I'm so sorry!! My kiddos were away on their visit to my sister's out in Vail, Colorado for six days and the hubs and I were very busy having a second honeymoon because it happened to coincide with our anniversary and Valentine's Day. Then....they came home and I left for New York City for a long weekend with my mom and sister. Sooooooo nice!!!!! I got home last week and got the house and everyone's lives back in order. And in the middle of all of it I was A.DD.ICTED to Friday Night Lights on Netflix. Every spare moment I had was spent in Dillon, Texas with Coach Taylor and Tim Riggins. I just finished up all 76 episodes yesterday and I miss them all already!!! Soooooo.....there it is. My formal apology of why I haven't been hopping around to all of your lovely blogs and have neglected mine. I will jump back in this week and try to turn things around over here. I've missed you all!!!!