Wednesday, November 24, 2010


Hello all,
Sorry for being so quiet, we were off to Philadelphia for the weekend for a race and now we are leaving for Florida(visitng grandparents and Harry Potter World) in a few short hours.  Just wanted to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!  I will have lots of posts when I return from our trip :)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Baking Under The Influence: Caramel Apple Cupcakes and Donuts

    First off I wanted to say I've noticed I have gotten a bunch new followers so I wanted to say "hi"!

classy plastic wine glasses leftover from my birthday wine party
 Sometimes you feel like drinking a bunch of wine and baking things, if you are me this happens a lot.  So I'd like to introduce you to the first in a series of posts that are what I shall call BUI (Baking Under the Influence). 
    So a little bit ago Fooding with Emily and I went to the Fiestaware Sale and decided that we needed a snack for the undgodly hour of wake up.  A few days beforehand, Emily found a recipe in Rachel Ray's Magazine and we decided this would be it.

Here is what you will need for this nomfest:
  • 1 bottle of your favorite wine (optional)
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 rome apples (about 1 pound), peeled and shredded ( we used the food processor to shred)
  • 1 1/2 cups chewy caramel candies
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream

Enjoy bottle of wine while completing the tasks below:

Arrange a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat to 350°. Line a cupcake pan with baking liners. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, brown sugar and granulated sugar until smooth. Whisk in the oil and vanilla. Stir into the flour mixture until just combined; stir in the apples.

Spoon the batter into the prepared pan until almost full. Bake until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out dry, 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool completely.

    In a small, microwavable bowl, combine the caramels and cream. Microwave for 1 minute at medium power, then stir; repeat in 30-second intervals until melted and smooth. Let cool. Spread the frosting generously on the cooled cupcakes.
    The only bad thing we both could say about these was the the caramel "frosting" will rip your emeffing teeth out if you eat it after it has cooled a bit. It is definitely still delish and edible but you have to eat it very carefully ha. I would suggest a brown sugar or spiced icing that wont rip your teeth out.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

First Real Dinner Party

Last night I hosted my first real dinner party. We recently got a new couch, dining table, 6 chairs, china closet, corner peice, and buffet so I wanted to break it in with some nums.
I just got my girl Ina's new cookbook "How Easy Is That?" so I decided to try a few out of there.

The first one I tried was the Lemon Chicken Breast

It was pretty easy to prepare and cooked up nice.
Here is what you will need:
1/4 cup good olive oil
3 tablespoons minced garlic (9 cloves)
1/3 cup dry white wine
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest (2 lemons)
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1½ teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme leaves
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 boneless chicken breasts, skin on (6 to 8 ounces each)
1 lemon

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Warm the olive oil in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, add the garlic, and cook for just 1 minute but don’t allow the garlic to turn brown. Off the heat, add the white wine, lemon zest, lemon juice, oregano, thyme, and 1 teaspoon salt and pour into a 9 X 12-inch baking dish.

Pat the chicken breasts dry and place them skin side up over the sauce. Brush the chicken breasts with olive oil and sprinkle them liberally with salt and pepper. Cut the lemon in 8 wedges and tuck it among the pieces of chicken.

Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, depending on the size of the chicken breasts, until the chicken is done and the skin is lightly browned. If the chicken isn’t browned enough, put it under the broiler for 2 minutes. Cover the pan tightly with aluminum foil and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and serve hot with the pan juices.
Yes i just copied and pasted from that website ha.  I didn't get to take any pictures though and I won't steal the one from her website.  The chicken turned out very moist and flavorful.

Next up I made Cous Cous with Roasted Pine Nuts
4 tablespoons (½ stick) unsalted butter
2 cups chopped yellow onion (2 onions)
3 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade (eff that hoe)
1½ teaspoons kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cups couscous (12 ounces)
½ cup pine nuts, toasted (watch out, you can burn them in apprx 4 seconds)
½ cup minced fresh parsley

First note not from Ina- pine nuts are super expensive now for some reason and I know this would still be delish without them so feel free to leave them out. 

Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add the onion and cook over medium-low heat for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender but not browned. Add the chicken stock, salt, and pepper and bring to a full boil. Stir in the couscous, turn off the heat, cover, and allow to steam for 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork, stir in the pine nuts and parsley, and serve hot.
I seriosuly could have eaten all this cous cous myself it was THAT good. I highly reccomend it- bitch was right,  it was easy!

Finally for dessert I made a pretzel chocloate pie with homemade chocolate pudding that I adapted from Foodess!
It was really easy and a great way to use up extra egg fact I might go home and make more tonight :)

Pretzel Crust

To crush pretzels, use a food processor or seal inside a large freezer bag and crush with a rolling pin. Crush about 1/4 cup extra for sprinkling on top of pie.

1 1/2 cups coarsely crushed pretzels
1/4 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup butter, melted
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine crushed pretzels with sugar and melted butter. Press into a 9 inch pie plate. Bake for 10-12 minutes until browned. Cool completely.

Dark Chocolate Filling

  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 3 tbsp cornstarch
  • 3 tbsp cocoa
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup cream (you can use 10% or heavy cream)
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips 


Whisk together sugar, cornstarch and cocoa in a medium sized pot. Add yolks and whisk to combine. Place the pot on the stove over medium heat, and whisk in the milk and cream. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until pudding thickens and bubbles begin to form. ( It takes a little bit but you will definitaley notice) Reduce heat and continue cooking 3-5 minutes, continuing to stir. Try not to bring the pudding to a boil or you might scramble the egg. (However don’t panic if this happens by accident, you can strain out the egg bits).

Remove pudding from heat and stir in chocolate until melted.  Cover pudding with plastic wrap, pushing the plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the pudding – this prevents a skin from forming on top. Transfer pudding to fridge, and chill for at least 2 hours.

Top with remaining pretzels and favorite whipped topping!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Milspouse Friday Fill-In #21

Friday Fill-in over at Wife of a Sailor!

Were you named after anyone? Not that I know of, but my mom almost named me Alexandria but my maiden name was 10 letters long and my Gram told her I'd still be writing my name and other kids would be at recess!

What color, if any, are your toenails usually painted? Usually a shade of pink but i loooove all nail polish, usually change it up 3 times a week. I will soon post about my obsession.

How do you flush a public toilet? Hands? Feet? Something else?  Feet for sure!

When you were a little kid, which TV character did you have a crush on?  Jonathan Taylor Thomas swwwoooooon

Let’s say you had to lose one of your five senses (sight, hearing, touch, taste, and smell).  Which one would you choose? Why?  I would say smell if it didn't affect my taste because to me its the least important of the senses. It would be nice not to smell somethings ha.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Heaven and Hell

For Veteran's Day  I wanted to leave you all with a little something:

A Soldier's Prayer

The soldier stood and faced his God Which must always come to pass...
He hoped his shoes were shining Just as brightly as his brass.
"Step forward now, you soldier, How shall I deal with you?
Have you always turned the other cheek? To My Church have you been true?"
The soldier squared his shoulders and Said,"No, Lord, I guess I ain't...
Because those of us who carry guns Can't always be a saint.
I've had to work most Sundays And at times my talk was tough,
And sometimes I've been violent, Because the streets are awfully tough.
But, I never took a penny That wasn't mine to keep...
Though I worked a lot of overtime When the bills got just too steep,
And I never passed a cry for help, Though at times I shook with fear,
And sometimes, God forgive me, I've wept unmanly tears.
I know I don't deserve a place Among the people here...
They never wanted me around Except to calm their fears.
If you've a place for me here, Lord, It needn't be so grand,
I never expected or had too much, But if you don't, I'll understand."
There was a silence all around the throne Where the saints had often trod...
As the soldier waited quietly, For the judgment of his God,
"Step forward now you soldier,
Walk peacefully on Heaven's streets,
You've done your time in Hell."

For those of us lucky enough to have our guys here, I hope you all have a wonderful day tomorrow with them and get some free food :P, for those of you who don't, I hope they are on their way to coming home safe and soon to your loving arms.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Veteran's Day Discounts! and Milspouse Friday Fill-In #20

Head on over to The Military Wallet and see where you and your sweetie can get some discounts during the next week!  These deals start on Sunday November 7th with McCormick and Schmicks and end Monday November 15th with Golden Corral.  I know the hubs and I have reservations for dinner on the 7th and there are soooo many places to chose from to go to on the 11th.  Anyone see any that arent listed here? Comment and I'll update the post :)

Woo hoo! its one of my favorite things to do in the week, I am always excited to see what kind of questions people come up with, head on over to Wife of a Sailor to participate.

A different twist on last week’s question. This week, the first question is: what’s the nicest thing a MILSPOUSE has ever done for you? (brought to you from navy_smurfette)  Well most recently Lola invited me to run the Army Ten Miler with her and her friends so that was excellent. I did not have to run alone and got to know a few wonderful ladies:).  Verna helped me so much when I gave Dan a mancave while he was away at training (will post about that soon), and Kayla was the best deployment battle buddy everrrrr!

How often do you drive faster than the speed limit?
um always. I think 25 is an unrealistic speed limit. I drive about 40-45 mph most often no matter what.

Did you have a nickname in school? If so, what was it?
yep yep its Jules- just a shorter version of my name, though it never really caught on until college.

If your life was a book, what would the title be and how would it end?
Running Through Life and it would end with us being one of those 80 year olds puttin along in a race ha. 

Look back (in your planner if you have one) to September 14th… what did you do that day?
I put everything in my blackberry and it deletes stuff that old, however on Oct 14th I was getting ready to go to the Fiestaware sale :)

Don't forget to link up!
Have a great weekend!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Behind the Name

Some of you may be wondering where I came up with the title of my blog.  Well here is the explanation!

Pink Champagne: obviously I enjoy some adult beverages every once in awhile, but to me this also means the fun and fancy things in life

Gatorade: my husband and I are runners

MRE's: Army stuff, recipes

How did you all come up with your titles?

Also, if you all have blog buttons let me know so I can snag them and put them on my blog roll :)


So I have been tagged for two awards in the past few days, thanks ladies!

First from Mrs. Monkey:

To accept the Versatile Blogger Award the rules are:

{1}: Thank and link back to who gave you the award.
Thank you Mrs. Monkey at A Monkey in the Navy!

{2}: Share 7 things about yourself.
(In no particular order or preference)

1. I love am obsessed with nail polish
2. I watch pretty much every horrible reality show on tv
3. I am the treasurer of my FRG which only has 1 other member, the leader!
4. I think wine and/or ice cream can solve most of the days problems
5. I won "best laugh" in college and sometimes people use it to locate me in crowded places
6. My car was totaled while parked in front of my house (of course while hubby was away), and ive made up an elaborate (false) story about how the teenager was sexting pics of his ween and thats why he killed my beloved Bobbie.
7.My favorite holidays are the 4th of July and Veteran's Day.

{3}: Pass it along to 7 blogs you've recently discovered and enjoy!
 7. everyone else that i have just discovered already has this award ha!

{4}: Leave the recipients a note, telling them about the award.

And secondly I received this award:

Here are the rules:
1. Thank and link back to who gave you the award.
Thanks to Staci @ The Crafty Military Wife!
2. Answer the awesome questions Listed Below
3. Pass it along to newbie blogs or Blogs that are new to you that you absolutely love...don't forget to share why you picked them!
I'm just going to pick two randomly, and the winners are.....
4. Leave the recipients a note telling them about the award.
And the questions are...
1) What is the one thing you love treat yourself to ...that you rarely do?
Pedicures! Though emily and I have a date for one soon!
2) What Book have you read that has just opened your eyes or touched you deeply?
I recently read Dear John and it was a fantastic read, way better than the movie.
3) If you were reincarnated as an animal/drink/ice cream flavor, what would it be?
Animal: puppy because they have the life man
Drink: american honey whiskey
Ice Cream: banana cream pie blizzard

4) What celebrity do you ever get mistaken for?
Helen Hunt, not really mistaken for but I've heard a lot that I look like her and I'm not sure how I feel about that ha.

5) Where is Waldo?

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Soldier's Angels: Project Valour IT

I have been a member of Soldier's Angels for about 2 years and every year they have a contest to see which branch can raise the most money to support their Project Valour IT. It raises money to give wounded soldiers various forms of technology such as voice activated laptops, Wiis, and personal GPSs.
Please donate to this wonderful cause, it ends November 11th.

learn more

Please note that link donates to Team Army, I know I have some other branches reading so go here to find your branch.

Go Team Army!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Fiesta! Fiesta!

My friends will tell you I have two obsessions: nail polish and kitchen stuff. Oh we will get to the nail polish soon don't worry!
I am lucky enough to live rather close to the Fiestaware Outlet (Homer Laughlin China Co) and twice a year they have a "seconds" tent sale. Now this is serious business my friends, I'm talkin SURRIUS. They post the details about a month prior on their website, you get your ticket number at 7am and then line up again at 930 to actually be let in the sale. They let approximately 75 people in at once.
You can't just show up at 7am and get your ticket, oh no. We fiercely game planned this. We anticipated on leaving at 430am as it is about an hours drive. We ended up leaving at 5am and got there at 6am and you have to basically camp out. We brought tailgate chairs and blankets. We were WAY out done by the people who were first in line. They had an RV, tent, and cots and God knows what time they got there! We were numbers 89, 90 and 91 to be let in the sale which means we were in the second wave.

After we got our numbers we went out to eat and had some delish, but very bad for you diner food.

underneath all that gravy was 4 biscuts, eggs, and hashbrowns

We returned to the outlet and IT WAS ON LIKE DONKEY KONG ladies and gentlemen. Once they let you passed a certain point you have to wait in line by the tent and you can hear the plates clanging and it must be similar to what football players feel waiting to run out into the stadium, they can hear the crowd but can't see them.
as you can see there were lots of fashion disasters

You must bring your own dolly, and lots of people (myself included) wear socks on theirs hands so that you can wipe off the item to make sure its not really that jacked up.  Once you get inside the tent its every memaw, pepaw, bitchy gay (usually with me), cat lady, and awesome 25 year old blogger (me :P) for themselves.

To illustrate why it is worth getting up this early and fighting the crowd, these are the deals I got:

1 Tea Cup: Original Price: $7.50,  Tent Sale Price: $1.25

2 Large Utensil Crock: Original Price: $50.00 per crock,  Tent Sale Price $4.75 per crock

2 Loaf Pans: Original Price: $43.00 per pan,  Tent Sale Price $15.00 per pan
1 Large Oval Platter: Original Price $32.00,  Tent Sale Price $3.15

1 Pie Baker: Original Price $25.00, Tent Sale Price $3.70
1 Quart Serving Bowl: Orignal Price $25.00, Tent Sale Price  $2.50

I'd like to note that I was not alone in my craziness; my FRG leader and buddy V joined me, as well as Fooding with Emily (I also stole some of her photos :P)

Monday, November 1, 2010

I Cried Watching Jerseylicious

ya that's right, and if that makes you stop reading this blog I'll totally understand.  This brings up a more serious point. I didn't use to act like this at all, but during my hubby's deployment I definitely went through an emotional change that I kinda thought I would snap out of when he came home. Not the case.  Dumb things made me cry (and still do), I got bitchy, and anxious.  Thankfully the second I saw him my anxiety went away, some of the bitchy is still here but I think its because I learned to not be such a pushover while he was gone, but the crying I can't get rid of!  Anyone else experience any emotional (or physical) changes while your SO was deployed?

P.S Speaking of deployments if you loved one is going to be away for the holidays here is the USPS reccoemended ship dates: