Thursday, December 25, 2014

Happy Birthday to my Sister!!!

My sister is the Christmas baby! It was a blessing and a curse. She never had real birthdays because they were wrapped up in Christmas. But when people realized it was her birthday, they slipped her cash. So it was both good and bad.

Happy Birthday to Yvonne. My only sister and the best sister ever. Of course, that also means she is the worst sister ever as well. But I love her and would not want any other person to be my hermana!!

Is it me or is Santa totally creepy?

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Early Throwback Thursday! More of little Caro and Jackie

Yes, I know my sister's name is Yvonne but I call her Jackie because that's how I roll. Anyway, it's Throwback Thursday so that means old pics of me and Jackie.

Here we are dressed alike again on our bikes. God, we are adorable, especially me.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

We are headed to Cancun!

I am off again. We are headed to Cancun for Christmas. So I will not be posting anything unless I get bored and crazy on vacay and blog. That will probably not happen though.

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Lemon Spaghetti Recipe

This is a quick and easy meal when you have nothing in the house. The other day, I had nothing in the house and was too lazy to head out to the grocery store. I saw this recipe on Rachel Ray years ago. This is not her recipe. This is just my willy-nilly version of it. But if you have lemons, garlic, olive oil and pasta in the house. I guarantee you will love this  light and easy pasta dish.

Take the juice of 2 lemons. You do not have to use all of it but have it ready. Also, you will need lemon zest, 2 cloves of garlic (or more if you like garlic) and olive oil.

Place about 1/2 cup olive oil and half a stick of butter in a pan and heat. Add the garlic and cook at a slow simmer. You want to soften the garlic. I say let it simmer for about 15 minutes. Then add the lemon juice. I would add half of the juice and then taste and see how tart you want it. Salt and pepper to taste. If you want a little spice, add a few red pepper flakes. 

Add the pasta to the sauce. Add the lemon zest on top and mix up. Serve with a little Parmesan cheese. This is such an easy meal a baby can make it. Plus, it really is delish. I never thought that lemon with pasta would be good but it is. This also makes a great side dish. 

Buen Provecho! 

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

2014 White House Christmas Card

Because I am a huge nerdy geek, I was thrilled to be on the White House Christmas Card list again this year. I have received the cards for 3 years now. I am also a little glad and disturbed they found me since I moved. But, then again, it is the government!

Happy Holidays from me and the Obama family!

Monday, December 15, 2014

I live in a Remote Hell

No, Wilmington is not hell but our house has become a hell filled with remotes. TV remotes.

The insidiousness of the remote controls taking over our house is almost too much to bear. When it is my turn to watch a movie or use the Roku, I break in a cold sweat.  My palms get sweaty and I get twitchy. I have to breathe deeply before I can even try and set anything up.

We have always had a ton of remotes because we have no clue how to program them. You can program the remotes to do one thing or to handle the all the tasks but we don't know how to do this. At our last house we had 4. One for the Directv box. One for the TV and one for the sound and one for the DVD player. It was a pain in the but but we got along.

When we moved here, we decided to get free of remotes and boxes. Watching those Directv ads where you can go wireless sounded like Nirvana to us. We wanted to so be on board with that. We checked out the program and realized that we also had to get the DVR feature to go wireless. I was thrilled because I was going wireless and getting the DVR. We were finally in the 21st century. Of course, it costs more money to go wireless.

We set up the appointment with Directv and waited. I waited the Directv guy to get us all set up. I figured we would still have the TV remote but, maybe, the Directv guy would be able to make it that everything ran through the Directv remote. I was excited. I was giddy!

He came and he poked and prodded at our TV. He went outside, He had to bury the cable to set up the satellite. He set up the other TV's in the house. We have 3. One in the living room, master bedroom and the guest room. I was so excited until we realized that the Directv guy was not the savior we thought him to be.

He couldn't fix our problem. Our sound system could not be run through the TV set up and that meant we still had to have the sound remote. Same with the DVD player. So the Directv guy was a complete bust. Oh he was nice enough but still left us in limbo.

Right now, we still have 2 remotes in the Master Bedroom. One for the TV and one for the Directv. This is the only TV though that can use both remotes as the volume control. Same goes with the guest room except I have 3 remotes there because we also have a DVD player that I use for my exercise tapes.

Our living room is the most hellish of all. We have a remote for the Directv. Well, actually we have 2 because the Directv guy gave us a new one and we still had the old one. So now we have matching his and her remotes. How sad is that? Although it is fun because I can change whatever nonsense Tom is watching when I want. But then he can do the same to me.

Then we have the TV remote. Then we have the sound remote. Then we have the Blu-ray player remote. And lastly, we have the Roku remote. And we are not wireless at all.

If I want to turn on the TV, that takes 3 remotes. I have to turn on the TV. Turn on the Directv and then use the one remote to control the volume. If I want to watch a DVD that is one more remote. If I want to use the Roku, that takes 4 remotes, a PhD in computer science and my first born. It is frightening. There are times I just stare down at all the remotes and cry. I bawl. Then I curl up in a fetal position on the rug until I gain my composure.

Of course, all the remotes are black which make it hard to distinguish them all. Luckily, the Directv remote is white so I can figure that one out real fast.

But, I am not sure how we got here but we are here. I guess technology does not make it easier but, in our case, more difficult. But it is always better to have a zillion remotes than to have to get up and turn the channels. Remember that?

I really think Directv owes us an apology because we are not wireless. All the boxes have wires. All the wires have wires. They totally mislead us. Luckily, we did get DVR which is a godsend for avid TV watchers like us. But the price we pay for is a heavy price. It costs me my sanity. And sometimes, I dream of chucking it all and then I laugh because that is ridiculous. How can you not have TV, right? So we will continue paying the price to have access to Netflix, Satellite,  Roku and all that other jazz.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Tale of Two Sisters!

I love this picture. My sister is so sweet and pretty posing for the photo. I am just like: whatever, let me eat my snowcone. It seems like I had always had a little bit of an attitude. LOL

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

One Pot Spaghetti Recipe!

So I was trolling around the internets and this recipe popped up on Yahoo. I was intrigued because I could not believe you could make spaghetti in one pot. But I am always game for a new foodie adventure. I tried this Martha Stewart recipe.

You need cherry tomatoes, an onion, garlic, red pepper flakes, olive oil, fresh basil and spaghetti. 

Cut the cherry tomatoes in half.

Slice the onions.

Chop the garlic

1/2 teaspoon of chili flakes

Salt and pepper

4 1/2 cups of water

Fresh basil

Put all the ingredients into a pot

Boil for about 9 minutes. I had to leave it in for 11 minutes because it was too al dente at 9 minutes. 

It worked but I had issues with the pasta. I felt it was too starchy and the texture was a little off.  The flavor was good but I would take out the chili flakes because it was way too spicy. This is a pretty easy recipe that I would try again. It is so much easier to just dump everything in a pot and let it cook. If you went camping, this would make a really good dish. 

Buen Provecho!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Throwback Thursday ~ With Abuelita

All I remember from this photo is my granny and this is where she lived. I am on her lap and my sister is the one with the doll on her head. Apparently, my mom liked the Beatles because we so had their haircut!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Boeuf Bourguignon ala Trisha Yearwood!

I have to admit I watch a lot of the Food Network channel. I can have it on all day without any problem. The other day I was watching Trisha Yearwood's show. This is my new favorite show besides the Pioneer Woman. So Trisha had her sister Beth on and they were doing Boeuf Bourguignon. Now Boeuf Bourguignon is something I have never ever tried because it seemed so complex and time-consuming. But after watching Trisha tackle it, I knew I had to try it. 

If you want the real recipe, head over to the Food Network site. I sort of followed the recipe. But if you follow my instructions, I think you will be able to make it as well. It really was not that hard. Here is how I made it:

You will need some beef. I used Pot Roast beef. You will also need carrots, onions, fresh thyme, garlic, bacon, mushrooms, wine, tomato paste, pearl onions, peppercorns and cheesecloth. 

Chop up 2 carrots and 1 onion. Place in a cheesecloth. Add the garlic (4 cloves), thyme and black peppercorns. Wrap up the ingredients tightly in the cheesecloth, set aside.

Cut 6 bacon strips into small pieces and cook.

Cut the meat into cubes and salt and pepper liberally. 

Cook the bacon until brown. 

Once the bacon is ready, take out and drain. Set aside. 

Start browning the meat in batches.

Once the meat is browned, take out and set aside.

Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of flour to the bacon and beef drippings and whisk. 

Boil until it becomes a roux and thickens. 

Add about 2 to 3 cups of beef broth to the mixture. 

Add the beef and bacon to the pot and mix. 

Add a bottle of wine and a tablespoon of tomato paste. 

Mix everything. 

Add the cheesecloth with the herbs, carrots and onions etc. 

I placed the boeuf bourguignon in a 275 degree oven for 4 to 5 hours. 

Cut up some mushrooms and get the pearl onions ready. I used frozen ones with cream. Wrong ones but Washed the cream sauce off and just used the onions. 

Take out the beef and bacon. Also remove the cheesecloth with the veggies. 

Reduce the sauce by about half. 

In the meantime, saute the mushrooms in a little butter. 

Ready the pearl onions.

Add the meat back into the sauce. 

Add in the mushrooms and onions. And it is done!!

I served the boeuf bourguignon with horseradish mashed potatoes! 

It was pretty amazing! Now, I do have to say that you can probably do the same thing in a slow cooker. I have made a similar dish in the slow cooker. But this was absolutely delicious and it was not that hard! This is a perfect dish for winter or a fancy dinner!