Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Easy-Skinny Chicken Tostada

so it wasn't until after i declared this dish a "tostada" that i found out it is far from what a tostada really is. a tostada has a deep fried tortilla, and this does not. but it is a skinny version. it is really easy to make up your own mexican recipes. throw in some beans, salsa, cheese, whatever. and there you have it. you can't go wrong. i try to eat my healthiest during the week because i like to splurge on the weekends. i also like easy dinners. who wants to cook gourmet after a whole work day and an afternoon spent at the gym? not me. so here you have it...

Easy-Skinny Chicken Tostada

-1 package all natural/non-gmo thin chicken strips
-6 flour tortillas (you can use low carb, wheat, etc.)
-cumin, garlic powder, chili powder, cayenne pepper (no real measurements)
-1- 1 1/2 cup reduced fat shredded cheddar cheese
-a few tablespoons light sour cream (i get the ones with the least ingredients)
-shredded lettuce or baby spinach
-half bag frozen corn

-preheat oven to 350 degrees
-spray baking dish with non-stick cooking spray
-place chicken tenders on the dish
-sprinkle chicken with as much as you would like of each of the spices (i like to put a lot! just don't use too much cayenne pepper because it's spicy)
-cook chicken for 16ish minutes or until fully cooked
-while you are cooking chicken, heat frozen corn on a skillet or microwave if you have one (i do not)
-take chicken out and cut into strips (i could cut 2-3 strips out of each tender), set aside
-sprinkle shredded cheese onto the tortillas
-rinse off grease from baking dish, place foil on dish, and place tortillas on it (i do 3 first, eat, then do the other 3)
-broil on high for 3 minutes with the oven door slightly cracked (watch it because you don't want it to turn burn or it will be too crunchy)
-place tortillas on your plate and top with chicken, salsa, sour cream, lettuce, corn
-enjoy :)

Sunday, March 23, 2014

donuts and diner coffee

top of the morning to ya'll (i don't know why i said that?). and blogger, please stop capitalizing my i's! i plan on not using correct grammar and punctuation because a. my blog will look cooler and b. well, it will mask the fact that i don't know how to use correct punctuation and all teachers obviously know all things punctuation/grammar.

anyways, ever since my dexter obsession, I've (there it goes again) been craving donuts. real, donuts. not dunkin donut donuts. i had been finding it a little hard to track down great donut shops in boston (suggestions, please!). but a friend suggested twin donuts in allston. since i sleep no later than 8am on any given day, i decided it would be the perfect time to try it out. i got the "chocolate dip" and M got a "honey dip." i didn't try his but i can say mine was fabulous. first of all, it was huge. and only 75 cents (beat that, dunkin donuts! okay, actually i don't know the going rate of donuts anywhere, but it seemed reasonably priced). it was moist (ugh, that word), had just the right amount of glaze on it, and sort of had a hint of coconut. it was fresh and every other bite was delicately dipped in my coffee.

speaking of coffee. WHY does diner coffee taste so heavenly? it isn't too often anymore that i am drinking coffee out of a pot (hello, keurig). i usually find pot coffee from my parents and relatives to taste bitter, burnt, or just plain watery. but, diner coffee, man... is like prozac to my soul. there's also something about coffee that makes me want to slow down, take a look around, and appreciate the small details in my surroundings. it's like i'm sipping my coffee and i realize what a nice paint job my kitchen has, or how the lyrics to my current favorite song finally make sense. bottom line, if you need a quick pick me up, grab some diner coffee and a donut at twin donuts in allston. you, your taste buds, and your soul will thank me.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

pizza party and a run

it's sunday everyone! the least favorite of everyone's weekend days. at least for me. sundays mean laundry, grocery shopping, cleaning, being a real human, etc. ah, oh well! tomorrow, we will go to work and count down the days 'til friday.

i have realized it's much easier to type using a real laptop instead of my iphone or ipad. haven't use this thing much since grad school. i sort of missed it! i must say, it's a little tricky to use a mac at work and then use a pc at home.

anyways, friday night i went to a friend's house for a make-your-own pizza party! it was a brilliant idea. i'm a big fan of themed parties/gatherings. the host provided sauce and cheese, i brought the dough, and everyone brought a favorite topping. we had varieties of cheeses, olives, meats, pears, different kinds of sauces, and a whole bunch of apps beforehand. oh, and wine. let's not forget the wine. it was so fun to actually make the pizzas. it was not a pretty sight, but the pizzas ended up tasting fabulous!

saturday morning M convinced me to go for an outside run. it was beautiful out and i wanted to try my new mizuno wave inspire 17s. i usually go for a stability shoe but i decided to try something different. and clearly, i just liked the way they looked. i felt like i was flying. highly recommended. we planned on a 2-miler but ended up running more than 4. i am so proud of myself. running outside is much different than running on a treadmill. at this rate, i should be okay by the heartbreak hill 10k. i've also decided stretching is probably not optional anymore. enjoy the week everyone :)


Tuesday, March 11, 2014

to blog or not to blog?

that is the question! for quite some time now, i have contemplated the idea of starting a blog. i'm an avid reader of all things blog. i read fashion blogs, lifestyle blogs, fitness blogs, blogs about blogs, and even mommy blogs (who knew?!). it's something a lot of people don't know about me, but it would be an understatement if i said i couldn't wait to get home at night, sit down on my citrus- green couch, ipad in hand, and click away at my little "blogs i love" folder. i get lost in them! they give me ideas- DIY projects easy enough to actually complete, healthy alternatives to my favorite comfort foods, they inspire me- inspire me to reach my goal weight, think twice about worldly issues, become a runner, become a photographer (which i hope to pick up someday soon!). i just love everything about them! anyone who enjoys reading blogs this much, must have one! i can think back to the livejournal days (oh, gosh!) and i would get lost in my posts, sometimes, multiple a day. i liked tweaking the fonts to have them look perfectly, adding pictures to my posts as to make sure they weren't boring, checking my comments, commenting on others. i like the informality of blogs. being a teacher,  i am certainly an advocate for proper grammar, but in the blogworld- anything goes!

what kind of blogger will i become? who knows? all i know is it's about time to publish post 1 :)

anyways- i wanted to show how cute my spring bulletin board came out. i get a lot of my monthly bulletin board ideas from old Mailbox Magazines. The Mailbox is such a classic teacher company. i like how they have many, many teacher resource books and also offer a magazine subscription. anyways, i love featuring poetry on my boards. poetry is always fun for students/other staff members to read. who wants to stand in a hallway and read a report or a five page biography anyways? plus, my students never fail to amaze me at their poetry writing skills! i decided to go the cinquain route since we have been doing some practice work with syllables. i added an extra challenge by telling the students they could not just list words, that the poem had to have phrases on each line, or the whole poem could be one sentence long. they loved the challenge and proved to be really good at it, too.

all you need is: one 8-inch black circle, one 8-inch red circle, one 3-inch black circle (for the head), two 3-inch long black pipe cleaners, and a few 1-inch black circles for the spots. if you google "____ inch circle template" you can find tons of printable ones. i traced these onto cardstock to use as a master tracer. then you can have the students trace and cut your own. if you're a perfectionist, like me, you will trace them and have students cut them out.

step 1: glue the two black circles together as the head and body
step 2: glue black dots onto red circle
step 3: draw a line with ruler on the back of red circle, cut down the line
step 4: glue both red halves on top of the body, leaving some black peeking out through the middle
step 5: glue (tacky glue works best) pipe cleaners for antennas

originally, you were supposed to put the poem inside the lady bug but it wasn't too much room. i opted for placing the work beside the bug. i also attached a short and simple paper about what a cinquain is. that way, the reader knows what they are looking at!

in other news- i have signed up for my FIRST 10k. sure, i only have two 5ks (where i actually ran) under my belt, but i am running at least 2-3 miles four-five times a week at the gym. i'm up for the challenge! everything about this 10k was perfect- the weather, it is right in front of my apartment, and you even get a finishers medal! so on june 7, you can catch me at the heartbreak hill running festival. run with me, cheer me on, or show up at the finish line with a cupcake and a bag of doritos.