Tulips, babies and stripper hair

16 Mar

Random title yes? Random times call for random titles so hold on, this post is gonna be all over the place.

So the past few days have been hellacious at work-just stressed out, too much work on my plate and I am off three days next week so I have to get a majority of stuff done this week. My work requires that I put hold dates on items so if I work an account, I have to set out a hold date of 10 days or less to work it again. I can’t really do that with being off next week so I am going to be bogged down with work this week and next until I leave and then come back for more fun. Speaking of work, you will notice I’m blogging during the day which rarely happens during the work week. I called in sick today due to a stomach ache. Which really isn’t a lie since my stomach is in knots due to stress from this job, so I don’t feel bad about calling in sick since this job is deteriorating my health.

I’ve done some random cooking in the past few days. On Monday night, I had no clue what to make so I did what I usually do-chop up some veggies and let them cook while trying to think of something to do with them that could turn into a meal.

Soon, I found a defrosted chicken breast, I cut that up and coated with fajita seasoning and cooked on the stovetop

I remembered I had refried black beans sitting in the fridge so this soon came together as a Mexican meal. I also had taco tortillas in the fridge but wasn’t feeling tacos (I don’t think I’ve ever said that before!) so I cut up the tortillas and baked them to make tortilla strips/chips

I mixed the beans with cheese and salsa and nuked for 2 minutes. They were so creamy and delicious and I used the tortilla strips to scoop it up with.

This was a quick and semi healthy meal and it felt like I was actually at a Mexican restaurant (sans margaritas and sombreros of course)

On Monday night, with only 20 minutes left of the show, I started to watch the Bachelor. I used to watch the Bachelor and Bachelorette but haven’t seen Jake was Bachelor and thought it’s been boring since then. The Emily chick that was picked is from Charlotte so I keep hearing about it 24/7 down here like it’s a big claim to fame to have someone from Charlotte on the Bachelor. Personally, I couldn’t stop staring at her stripper like hair

And that I watched After the Final Rose and she changed her hair so she looks like every other Junior League-esque woman in Charlotte, I like the platinum stripper hair better.  Part of my problem with this city is the lack of diversity, I feel like everyone looks the same from the girls with their pearls, J Crew and sunkist hair to the guys with their pastel colored clothes and John Edwards hair. Watching her and Brad was awfully awkward though, you could just tell he was way more into her than she him. Plus she doesn’t seem like the colder beer in the fridge. But then again, I was reading something online this morning saying how they are already done with. Why do I care about this? I have no clue.

I actually got out on Tuesday for an hour long lunch–that never happens anymore! One of my co-workers went to Mert’s, a soul food place Uptown a few blocks away from work. I haven’t been to Mert’s in ages but on a cold, dreary day when I am stressed soul food definitely does the trick! I had my heart set on the Fried shrimp Po Boy but then I saw our server bring a couple of dishes to the table next to us and I couldn’t stop starting. When I asked what it was-she said it was a BLT. Hold up, a BLT looked that sexy? I don’t think so! But then told me they serve their BLT on foccacia bread and that’s when I flip flopped over to the BLT side. Never would I order a BLT at a restaurant since I could make it at home but throw foccacia into the mix and that was the game changer. I got that and a side of mac and cheese

Now I’ve had some BLT’s in my day but that is the biggest one I’ve ever seen (twss) But let’s get real-I could have had a bowl of that mac and cheese and been happy. Dare I say it’s the best I’ve had in Charlotte?

Yes I dare, it was. And I’ve had a lot of mac and cheese in my day.

Mert’s is definitely a solid spot for a quick, soul food filling lunch!

On Tuesday afternoon, my neighbor texted me telling me that she was out of town but her boyfriend sent her flowers but she was going to be out of town the whole week. She told me I could go ahead and take them if I wanted since she wanted to enjoy them–how sweet is that? Since I like flowers but don’t ever receive them, I jumped on that and picked them up when I got home. 

Tulips-my favorite! Dying tulips but still tulips!

I kept them alive for a few hours but by nighttime, they were not in good shape. At least I got to enjoy them for a few hours though and they didn’t go completely to waste.

Dinner was very loosely based off of Rachel Ray’s recipe for  Korean Style Chicken or Pork Noodle Bowls.

Except I didn’t have any cabbage

or fresh ginger

or fresh garlic

So I improvided and used what I had (the spices themselves not the fresh stuff) and I used mushrooms and broccoli instead of cabbage. I was a bit unsure about the tomato paste to use in the sauce since I’ve never had an Asian dish that had a sauce that was tomato based but I decided to go with it since one of my goals is to try new cuisines.

Hmmm, I’m still conflicted about the meal -it was good but not as zesty as I thought it was going to be. It tasted like a glorified Italian dish instead of a Korean dish–even with the garlic, ginger, rice vinegar, soy sauce and agave. Edible, yes. Be making it again? No.

And it  definitely didn’t look like Ray Ray’s version


On the side, I  tried Annie Chung’s Mini Wontons-Chicken & Garlic flavored.

I’ve never experimented with wontons at home, even frozen ones so I was a bit skeptical about these little things.

I microwaved for two minutes and didn’t add any sauce to them and they were fantastic on their own! However, if you don’t like garlic definitely do not  try this since the garlic overpowered the chicken completely. I will be adding these to a soup next time since they are the perfect bite sized addition. I really could have had a plate of these for dinner and been happy. I can’t wait to try more Annie Chun’s products!!

And can I just say how much I love this little pup?

I must love him because I scheduled his appointment for his yearly shots today and asked for the estimate. $190!! And that’s without his heart worm medicine. Little dog has it good I tell you.

Has anyone seen how Dale Levitski from Top Chef has imposed a no kids rule at brunch at Sprout in Chicago? I am all for this. I cuss like a trucker and hate feeling bad about dropping the eff bomb when there are little ones around. And speaking of little ones-I feel like everyone I knew is pregnant or has had a kid within the past six months. It’s a weird feeling seeing people you know from childhood or girls whose hair you held back while they puked at a frat party having children. I can confidently say that I won’t be contributing to the population any time soon! Which reminds me, I need to find an outfit for the baby shower I’m going to this weekend…..

Would you go to a restaurant that had a no kids rule?

Any fun recipes you’ve tried this week? Inspire me please!

40 Responses to “Tulips, babies and stripper hair”

  1. TheSceneFromMe March 16, 2011 at 1:51 pm #

    Well I hope you feel better soon. Isn’t it lovely to have a day off work!!!
    I made tapioca pudding twice in the last week. I used large pearl tapioca too, which I love, but it skeeves some people out (like fish eggs). And I baked some sun-dried tomato basil tortillas in to chips to eat my chicken salad with.
    Now I am heading in the kitchen to make some ramen noodle salad! I’m going on a picnic tomorrow. Have you ever had it? It’s so good and simple to make. It’s one of those things that is better a day or two after you originally make it.

  2. OliePants March 16, 2011 at 2:11 pm #

    Your title made me LOL. I didn’t watch the final rose ceremony (b/c I don’t watch the Bachelor) but I did watch it where they had that date and he went to her house with the daughter. They are a disaster couple – I want to see how long they last.

    PS Your food makes me drool – esp your Mexican remix – even sans sombrero! 🙂

  3. Jenn @ Peas & Crayons March 16, 2011 at 3:02 pm #

    haha lincoln has it good but he totally deserves it! =) your dishes look so hearty and delicious! and ohmygosh i am cracking up — yes she DOES have stripper hair!

    thanks for the bday wishes love!

  4. MelissaNibbles March 16, 2011 at 3:20 pm #

    Feel well soon! The dumplings sound good. I keep eyeing them in the store. I think I’ll pick them up next time.

    I’ve never watched The Bachelor but I thought that was Holly from Holly’s World and got all excited because I watch that and thought we would be talking about that. Maybe next time…

  5. thehealthyapron March 16, 2011 at 3:20 pm #

    tulips are my new favorite flower! So happy no? Always makes my day seeing flowers!

  6. Stephanie March 16, 2011 at 3:22 pm #

    You just made me EXTREMELY glad that I didn’t watch it this year. What a waste of time. Your food looks good. 🙂 I love that you called in sick. Hahaha. I have done that a time or two or five thousand. I am not meant to work for the man…what can I say? 🙂

  7. genesis March 16, 2011 at 3:27 pm #

    i would definitely go to a restaurant with NO kids. i have a potty mouth and really dislike having to censor myself around kids who will in not time learn those words too.

    i made a random recipe the other day…wrapped some asparagus spears with thin chicken breasts and then baked it with cream of celery soup for about 50 minutes…its like a 5 ingredient meal if you add the S&P i used to season the chicken.

  8. This Italian Family March 16, 2011 at 3:31 pm #

    Pretty flowers! 🙂

    And I loooove BLTs! And that mac and cheese looks pretty delish too!

  9. vixter2010 March 16, 2011 at 3:37 pm #

    Your posts always make me hungry 🙂 mac and cheese looks good, they often offer that at a place near my work and I always succumb to it! I hope you get through your work stress okay!

  10. Monique March 16, 2011 at 3:41 pm #

    the korean chicken recipe sounds really good!!! and rachaels dish looks like that because some intern styled it. lol.
    that mac and cheese is the truth… but it aint better than s’mac. it aint LOL 🙂 maybe

  11. thehungryscholar March 16, 2011 at 3:59 pm #

    I like Emily. I like how she handled herself on After the Rose, because I get pissed that everyone acts like the show is (1) real and (2) a fairy tale.

    Speaking of bad stripper hair. I hate, hate, hated Chantel’s (sp?) dress for the final ceremony. It looked like she made it out of her grandma’s curtains and taped a dead bird on the shoulder.

  12. Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg March 16, 2011 at 4:03 pm #

    Ha, hearing your description of the Charlotte girls reminds me of how I felt living in Charleston sometimes. Charleston had a few different looks going on (hello, hippy drum circles), but that type was DEFINITELY well-represented.

  13. Amy @ Second City Randomness March 16, 2011 at 4:43 pm #

    There’s this girl in my building who has a totally clueless boyfriend. He’s had flowers delivered at least twice and she’s never picked them up. One Saturday night in a semi-blurry state, I may have taken the dozen roses up to my apartment.

    Turns out when it’s that cold in the entrance, flowers start to rot after 4 or 5 days. They smelled sooooo bad.

    Kept the vase, though. It’d be rude to be wasteful.

  14. Valerie Furnas March 16, 2011 at 4:55 pm #

    Agreed with the stripper hair. Emily looked like she was going through the motions on the show, they are so over. The wantons look tasty, will have to search the frozen food section and see if I can find them.

  15. Katherine: Unemployed March 16, 2011 at 7:45 pm #

    How absolutely sweet of your neighbor! It’s hard not to have a mild stigma against all members of the bachlor crew. It bothers me that she has a daughter and has left for the show, even if she ended up not getting married. I don’t know; it leaves disease with me.

    And yes I’d eat somewhere with a no kid rule; I’m probably a bad person. I don’t think I would ever choose that for a restaurant I owned but I would not hold it against a restaurant. Yet, I am single and childless so I don’t think it matters too much

  16. Ashleigh March 16, 2011 at 8:54 pm #

    Ugh, I am sorry that things still suck at work… I know what it’s like to be physically sick from work and it’s freaking awful!

    The other day I saw a birthday card that reminded me of Lincoln, and I thought it was kind of weird that I thought about a dog I didn’t know… 😉

    I LOVE children, but they can be annoying sometimes so I would def go somewhere no kids were allowed!

  17. Natalie @ Will Jog for Food March 16, 2011 at 8:57 pm #

    I love those won tons! and man… that mac & cheese looks so good!

    Im with you on the bachelor. I watched only the after the final rose, it definitely seems like it’s doomed. He said that he’s never letting her go? she seems pretty indifferent for sure.

  18. Monique March 16, 2011 at 9:29 pm #

    Super sweet you got to enjoy those flowers! They were pretty 🙂 And those tortilla strips are a fantastic idea! I’m making Mexican tonight and definitely am having a margarita. Or two, for the one you decided to forgo with that meal 🙂

  19. Heather (All Sizzle No Steak) March 16, 2011 at 11:00 pm #

    Ugh I dislike fine dining with a side of crying baby! I think that rule is totally fine.
    Also, those tulips are BEAUTIFUL!

  20. leashieloo March 16, 2011 at 11:32 pm #

    I bought those wontons recently, but still haven’t tried them. Glad to know that they’re tasty! And you are totally in my head, Mexican food has been on my mind like whoa lately.

  21. One Healthy Apple March 17, 2011 at 12:49 am #

    Good lordy, lady. I was waiting to see where the stripper hair portion of your post would come up. And yeah, total stripper hair. A lot of people look the same here in general- skinny jeans, boots, loose top, curled hair, blah, blah! I like to mix it up by wearing straight leg jeans sometimes instead of skinnies…rebellious!

    Your Mexican dish looks fabulous- I want some! The last thing I made was turkey loaf. I have been obsessed with making it and I was so happy to make some!

  22. thefitacademic March 17, 2011 at 2:41 am #

    ahaha,I love the title of this post – it’s hilarious!

  23. Krista @ Journey to a Healthy Berg March 17, 2011 at 8:44 am #

    I love how you can just throw some things on the stove and turn into an awesome meal! That Mexican looks delish! I can’t cook anything without a recipe. Although I did make a brown rice thing yesterday with chicken, spinach and mushrooms that was pretty tasty 🙂 I was quite proud of myself.

    I actually like Emily’s new hair better, but agree that watching those two together on the after show was totally awkward. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but poor Brad…

    Sorry you’re so stressed out at work! I hope things get better :/

  24. dianacheung March 17, 2011 at 9:40 am #

    i’m a b*tch. Can’t stand kids during a fancy dinner…get that little shit out of here! Brunch, i’m okay…I still cuss and I don’t apologize for it…F*CK IT!! anyways, sorry work is so stressful. I cried at work the other day…a worker quit, 2 workers fought IN FRONT OF CUSTOMERS, etc. Can april come faster? Wait…maybe that will stress us out too. Big hugs girlie!! Anyways, I hate fake a$$ blonde hair…everyone in tx loves that shit..that’s why I stick out…And honestly, your HONESTY is why Glenn didn’t pick Charlotte as his top choice…your vision of dbags walking around was not my cup of tea.

  25. Stephanie @ The Cookie Battle March 17, 2011 at 9:44 am #

    I would LOVE a restaurant that had a no kids rule. I really don’t like kids at all and would welcome a dining experience without having to listen to whiny kids and to be able to swear at will!

    Tulips are my fav too, so pretty!

  26. Mindy@FindingSilverLinings March 17, 2011 at 10:43 am #

    Oooh! The fajitas looked awesome! I’m jonesin for some Mexican! I agree with you on Emily. They looked uber uncomfortable. So awkward. I like the stripper hair too. Her whole look. Perfect body, spray tan, heavy eye makeup & long, platinum, curling iron curls while they all equal up to Stripperella, I though she was hawt! I’d give my left boob to look like her. Where I come from, everyone looks like they’re from the Jersey Shore! HaHAHaHa! You must have a pretty town.

  27. Alyssa March 17, 2011 at 11:57 am #

    I SO agree.. I went to Catawba College (Salisbury is clooose to Charlotte!), and yes, everyone is cookie-cutter alike there.

    P.S. I linked you in my post today. I just received my magnet yesterday! I LOVE it. Thank you, thank you!! 🙂

  28. Erin March 17, 2011 at 1:34 pm #

    Do you know I’ve never watched a full episode of the Bachelor?! So many of my friends do but I just can’t get into it!

    I’m on a quest to eat at all of the Top Chef restaurants. So far I’ve been to 2. I’m not doing so well. 😉

  29. Kace March 17, 2011 at 5:33 pm #

    Oh, I have been stuck in a baby boom, too. It is definitely weird. My cousin, who I grew up with as my “best cousin” just gave birth yesterday. This one was really hard for me to believe ha. But yeah, I really can’t even imagine being in that place right now.

  30. Lily's Health Pad March 17, 2011 at 7:34 pm #

    Yeah, I haven’t watched the bachelor in years. I’m definitely over it. It’s just so fake and obviously staged. When I lived in Charleston there were two girls on the show from there at the same time. One even went to my gym! I LOVE Stinkin Linkin!! So darn cute.

  31. Angela (the diet book junkie) March 17, 2011 at 8:31 pm #

    can you please come over and write my post titles?? seriously. 🙂

    to tell you the truth, we rarely go to restaurants that have children in them. we live downtown so it’s mostly business people and alcohol. can’t say i mind either!

  32. Elin @andserenitytoo March 18, 2011 at 2:40 am #

    The tulips are beautiful! Although maybe a little sad in the last flower pic 😉 I would definitely go to a restaurant with a no kids rule – the noise level just tends to go up the more kids there are…
    Recommend Angela’s (from oh she glows) creamy avocado pasta, I’m obsessed with it – it’s a really comforting but still healthy dish:)
    Hope your feel better soon!

    • simplyshaka March 20, 2011 at 10:16 pm #

      Great-thanks for the recipe tip, I will check it out!

      The tulips didn’t even last throughout the night, it was depressing.

  33. Callie March 18, 2011 at 12:50 pm #

    “I like the platinum stripper hair better…”

    Hahaha – that’s awesome. And, I totally agree 🙂

    • simplyshaka March 20, 2011 at 10:04 pm #

      Good to know someone out there agrees 🙂

  34. Leila Q March 23, 2011 at 1:06 pm #

    Not EVERYONE you know is procreating. This shizz needs to stop, though! Every morning when I take my pill I chant “no babies, no babies, no babies… STOP!” (Yes, like on Press Your Luck. What? Is that weird?) Sometimes I think about making a t-shirt with the red “no” sign over a crawling baby… like the No Ma’am shirts on Married With Children.

    Man, I am crazy…

    • simplyshaka March 24, 2011 at 6:00 am #

      Holy crap. I couldnt text you back when I saw this b/c I was in WV and didnt want to kill myself but yeah, I was crying from laughing so hard when I read this. I would totally rock that t shirt by the way. And now I’m going to be chanting that all day long. I wish they would bring back Press Your Luck

      • Leila Q March 24, 2011 at 2:36 pm #

        They did bring back Press Your Luck a few years ago, but I suppose it didn’t do well b/c I haven’t seen it lately. That, or it’s on some obscure game show channel that I don’t subscribe to – quite possible.

        I’ll see what I can do about those t-shirts…


  1. Frugal Friday-Random savings! « Simply Shaka - March 18, 2011

    […] night was the only time they could fit me in. Fine with me but I was kinda freaking out since I called in sick on Wednesday. If I ran into someone from work, my excuse was going to be they give killer hand and foot massages […]

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