Thursday, April 17

Delicious Leftovers

Do you have leftovers from yesterday's Spanish-Style Tuna Sandwich? Need an idea for a quick and easy lunch? Simply take the yummy sandwich filling from yesterday's meal, place it on an open face sandwich, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, and broil until the cheese is melted. Simple, healthy, delicious!

If you want updates and ideas like this as soon as I do them, follow me on Instagram @laurenmichellie and Twitter @laurenmichellie.

Wednesday, April 16

Ridiculously Practical Meals: Spanish-Style Tuna Sandwich

When the warm, spring air hits I start craving fresh food and nothing feels more fresh than this sandwich. Tuna is the perfect meat for hot days when you don't want anything too heavy. Mix in the navy beans and this sandwich will fill you up with out making you feel weighed down. Cherry tomatoes, sliced olives, and pimentos add a lot of fresh flavor. Hubby likes to describe cherry tomatoes as a 'pop' of flavor in your food.

What you will need: 1 5oz can of tuna, 1 cup of drained navy beans, 1/2 cup of sliced cherry tomatoes, 1/4 cup of sliced and pitted green olives, 1/4 cup sliced pimentos, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, sea salt and pepper to taste, ciabatta bread or baguette.

Drain the can of tuna and place the tuna in a medium sized bowl. Break up the chunks of tuna. Mix in navy beans, lightly mashing as you go.

Mix in everything else except the bread. Stir gently as you don't want to mash the tomatoes or olives.  I would err on the side of adding extra salt and pepper, but that's a personal choice.

Cut ciabatta bread or baguette in half and spoon mixture into the center of the sandwich. Serve with fruit or salad and enjoy! Bon app├ętit!

This recipe is adapted from The Eat Clean Diet Cookbook 2 by Tosca Reno. To buy her book click here.

Tuesday, April 15

Impromptu Post: Easy Pants

Trousers - Coldwater Creek (exact)
Shirt - Old, Forever 21 (similar)
Sandals - Old, Marc Fisher (exact)

Coldwater Creek has been one of my favorite stores for a long time and in May, I'm sad to say, they are closing their doors for good. This store isn't really intended for my age range, but I've found that they do a very good job of fitting women with curves (unlike most of the brands actually intended for my age range). To keep my looks young I generally mix and match their pieces with those from other companies, like Forever 21. In fact, that's exactly what I did today!

I've been wanting a pair of print trousers for a while now and found the perfect pair at Coldwater Creek this weekend. Plus, due to the fact they are closing, everything is currently 40% off or more. Score! I love them and they come in all sorts of colors and patterns. I just bought the Soft Mini Checks style, but I'm thinking about going back for a couple more before they close. These pants are perfect for summer, very light weight, soft, and an elastic waist band with a tie.

Print ankle pants and trousers are great paired with neutral and breezy tops. I paired mine with an sheer, white shirt from Forever 21 and a white lace tank top. Add a silver and pearl bracelets and you are set!

Monday, April 14

Literary Libations: Italian Soda

Today we are keeping it non-alcoholic, but still delicious. If you enjoy having a non-alcoholic post, let me know in the comments below as I'm considering doing a non-alcoholic drink once a month.

It has been hot! As in more than just toasty. We had three days in a row that were in the mid 80s! Then this weekend was a high of 75. I needed something cool and refreshing, and what is more cool and refreshing than an Italian Soda? Mmmm, look at that whip cream!

What you will need: Raspberry flavoring syrup, ginger ale, whip cream, ice. There are probably lots of ways to make an Italian Soda, but the way I make it is really simple. Place a few ice cubes in a Collins glass, add one to two ounces of raspberry flavoring syrup (depending on how sweet you want it), fill glass with ginger ale, top with whip cream. If you want to embellish your drink feel free to add a pretty straw! I like to serve these with straws so that those who want their cream mixed in (that's me!) can use their straw to do so.

You can use any flavor of syrup that you want. These flavoring syrups can normally be found in coffee shops or in the coffee aisle at your grocery store.

Warning: The Goldfinch spoilers are ahead!
I'm back to reading now that I've had some free time again, and the book is getting better! I've actually quite enjoyed the last chapter I read. For those who don't remember we left off with the death of Theo's father and Theo running away from Las Vegas and back to New York. He ended up staying with the exact friend that I thought he would. Theo and his father never got a long, at best they tolerated each other. Theo has now learned something that he believes would have allowed him to prevent his father's death and now feels a deep guilt. We've now learned that one of the characters who suffered a head injury during the explosion at the beginning of the story may have been handicapped more than Theo realized, and Theo is still struggling with what to do with the stolen Goldfinch painting. Things are finally beginning to develop in very interesting directions and I'm getting excited to see what comes next.

Friday, April 11

How To: Visit A Beautiful Mess

Hi guys! Today is my How To post day. I've been working on a how to post all week, but it's not quite ready yet. It definitely should be by the next week. In the mean time I figured I better have something to tide you over! One of my very favorite blogs is A Beautiful Mess. They have awesome posts every single day and if they aren't on your list of blogs to read yet, they should be. In lieu of my own post I'm going to direct you over to A Beautiful Mess's Colorful Kitchen Clock DIY. You should definitely go check them out!


Wednesday, April 9

Ridiculously Practical Meals: Roasted Asparagus With Topping

I am not a vegetable person. In fact, I have to admit to you that I probably average on eating vegetables once every other week. I know, it's terrible. The problem is I take a lot of convincing. In this case 'a lot of convincing' was cheese, panko, and paprika.

You will need: asparagus, olive oil, 1/8 cup fresh grated Parmesan, 1/2 cup seasoned panko bread crumbs, and 1/2 teaspoon paprika, and 1 tablespoon melted butter. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

Mix everything except the asparagus and olive oil in a bowl. You can freeze this mixture if you aren't going to use it right away. You don't even have to thaw it before your next use. Clean asparagus, chop off the woody parts of the stems, and lay in a single layer at the bottom of a pan or baking dish. Use a basting brush to paint asparagus with olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with the mixture you just made. Bake for 15 minutes.

This recipe is so easy you can whip it up in just a few minutes, that's my kind of recipe! You can do this with any vegetable of your choice, just be sure to change the cook time to match. I added flautas as a side dish. I got mine from Costco and just stuck them in the oven at the same time as the asparagus and added two minutes to the cook time. Whatever you decide to make, this will brighten up your vegetables and even make them palatable for vegetable haters like me!