Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Tastes Like Summer: The Perfect Sweet Tea

Twelve years ago, when I joined the Air Force and found myself living in Mississippi, I discovered something amazing- sweet tea.

It may be hard to believe to those of you living East of the Mississippi, but sweet tea is something that simply doesn't exist for most of the country.  I literally didn't know it was a thing until I was, oh, 20 years old or so.

It.  Is.  Life changing.

Personally, I think the best sweet tea I've ever tasted is from a restaurant called Pepper's (also the best potato salad EVER for the record...) but Pal's is a close runner up now that I live in TN.

Regardless, it's perfect.  Some people like it SICKLY sweet.
I can't handle that.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Super Simple Spicy Grilled Chicken (This Is What You Want For Dinner- I Promise!)

I have a confession to make- I've literally subsisted on almost nothing but this dish for an entire day lately- often.

I'm on a food jag and I just can't shake it.

I like spicy food- but not those super-hot-OMG-hot-for-the-sake-of-being-hot foods.
I like hot with a purpose.  Hot with flavor.

I like sriracha.  A lot.  If you've read many of my recipes you'll see that I've used it in everything from egg salad to Loaded Baked Potato Soup to salmon.

Well, relatively recently I convinced my husband we should take advantage of this beautiful weather and grill out, but I was completely unprepared food-wise.  As he was getting the grill started, way too late in the day to actually marinate anything, I threw this together.  Like, literally was throwing sauce on the chicken as he was heading out to the grill.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Ups, Downs, and A Side of Salad

We all have those days, don't we?  The days when you don't know which way is up.  There are days when I feel like both running for the hills and hiding in bed.  When I don't know if I want to fall into my husband's arms when he comes home from work or lock myself away in my room with a glass of wine and a book.

I think being a mother always means being torn in multiple directions, and it is often difficult to find a balance that makes you feel whole and successful in all of them.

I am wife.
I am mother
I am Nora.

Sometimes the planets align and I am happy to be all three.
Sometimes being a good Mommy is enough to make Nora happy too.

Sometimes I feel like a failure at them all.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Whole Wheat Sweet Potato Pizza Crust

I've mentioned it before in passing, but my little guy has High Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder.

He is awesome.  He's sweet, cuddly, hilarious, and can both read and write (well beyond his comprehension of language) already despite having just turned 3 last week.  He appears to be hyperlexic, which is crazy fun to observe.  That being said, he obviously has some issues and his sensory issues are probably second only to functional language delays.

He's slowly improving when it comes to tactile sensitivities, but he has so many weird issues with foods he can't/won't eat.  I'm constantly trying to figure out ways to sneak extra nutrients into the foods he will eat.  Lately he's been stuck on pizza.

Like STUCK on pizza.  He walks around asking for it all of the time.
Pizza isn't exactly known for it's nutritional value, and I can't just load it with veggies because he will only eat cheese or pepperoni pizza.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Brown Sugar Cookies

So, I bought a set of Easter cookie cutters with visions of good-mommyhood dancing through my head.

Then life happened.
Easter came and went...and the cookie cutters remained in their original packaging.

Bad Mommy.


My daughter reminded me of my oversight and I promised her we would make them as Spring cookies instead...

Then my oven died.
Too much popcorn baking?

*sigh again*

Friday, May 2, 2014

Cool and Creamy Southern Slaw

One of the first lessons I learned when I moved to the South 12 years ago (side note: 12 YEARS?!?  How has it been that long????  I'm getting old!) was that it is slaw rather than coleslaw.  One of the many words I soon found I had apparently been using incorrectly...like cart rather than buggy.  lol That one still makes me giggle.  I do believe I will forever refer to it as a cart.

I digress.  
I digress quite often and easily, I'm afraid...

Anyway, I never really liked coleslaw (boy, dropping that "cole" part has proven difficult for me!) growing up- but then again, the only real memory I have of eating it was at KFC and crying because my mom made me eat a few bites of it before getting one of those pudding cups they have (had?).

Then, I moved to Mississippi and discovered that coleslaw can be wonderful.  Not just itty-bitty pieces of cabbage drenched in sweet, creamy sauce.