Wednesday Favorites: TV Shows, Comfy Shorts, An Afternoon Snack, At Home Workout + 2 Amazon Fails

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Happy Friday Monday Wednesday!  Well, I had meant to get this up on Friday, but Thursday was one of those days at work where I just was exhausted afterwards, and didn't do much more than plop myself on the couch and heat up some leftovers for dinner.  Then, since I had a pretty low key weekend planned, I thought oh, I will get it together to share on Monday.  Before I knew it, though, Sunday evening rolled around and I had not opened my computer once!  Soooo, I am sharing my favorites today!


TV Shows.  

Shahs of Sunset (Bravo - seems like you can watch on Peacock and Hulu).  I absolutely LOVE this show.  I have been watching from the beginning, and this season's premiere was probably one of the best episodes ever.  It's about a Persian friend group, some of whom have been lifelong friends.  Over the years so much has gone down, and while some friendships have been fractured, it seems like this season (will hopefully) bring some repair, and of course, their normal hijinks.  


Mare of Easttown (HBO Max).  This show is about a small town detective (Kate Winslet) who is struggling to solve a disappearance, as well as dealing with her own personal struggles.  Add in a murder, and lots, and lots of other things.  It's a bit of a 'darker' show, but so very good.  One thing to note - it's similar to 'normal' TV in that a new episode is released each week on the streaming service.  I didn't realize that when I first heard about the show and was sorely disappointed when I settled in, expecting to watch a few episodes.  It's worth the wait, though.  So good!


Shorts.

I was on the lookout for some running shorts, and wanted ones that were a bit longer than my normal.  Nothing too long, but just a little longer.  I came across these 5" ones from Target, and love them.  I initially ordered the black, and ordered the navy shortly after wearing them.  They are just so dang comfy!  I actually haven't worn them running yet, but I have worn them on walks, working in the yard, and just lounging around, and they are definitely good for that, too!


Afternoon Snack.

I was craving a snack the other afternoon, and looking for something on the healthier side.  I ended up with a brown rice cake, spread with a Laughing Cow cheese wedge, and topped with Everything but the Bagel seasoning.  It was really good, and the perfect way to bridge that lunch/dinner gap.


I have read that rice cakes actually don't have that much nutritional value, even though they are often touted as 'health/diet' food.  That said, it does seem like brown rice cakes are a little better than the regular rice cakes.  Even though the nutritional value might not necessarily be there, I do think the crunch of the rice cake helps satisfy that chip/cracker crunch I sometimes crave, so I think it still works well (at least for me) for a snack that is on the healthier side.


At Home Workout.

The other day I went to go do a workout on the Peloton app, only to find out my iPad was dead.  I wanted a larger screen than my phone, so I decided to forego the Peloton app altogether, and pull out an old faithful from Honey We're Home that I had printed out years ago.  And goodness gracious, was it was a good one.  I was so dang sore afterwards - it's amazing what some squats and lunges can do, haha.  If you are looking for a quicker (~20 minutes), at home, full body workout, definitely check it out.


Now for the fails.


Diva Laundry Detergent.  I have heard for years that this detergent was the best smelling thing - ever!  I never gave it a go, but came across it again, and decided to go for the smallest container, just to give it a try.  It was definitely an impulse buy, haha.  Anyways, the scent that everyone says is the best. thing. ever.?  Well, it's not for me.  It's super strong, which is great if you enjoy the smell, but it was so darn perfume-y, I did not.  I don't even know what exactly it smelled like, but perfume-y is all I can describe it as.  


Black Sunglasses.  I saw these on Alexa Anglin's instagram, and they were so darn cute.  They were on sale for $13, so I figured I would give them a go.  They looked itty bitty on me - not quite like children's sunglasses, but right on that edge, haha!  Super cute on her, but on me?  Not so much. 


I am hoping to be back next week with my (late) spring & summer reading list.  I shared 10 books I couldn't wait to read last year (post here), and thought I would do the same this year.  It's always fun seeing what is out and new!


Hope you all have a great rest of the week, and for those of us with Memorial Day off, a great long weekend!



May Flowers: 2021

Today is my annual flower post - a sure sign that spring is fully here, and summer is right around the corner.

Like last year, I kept things pretty simple, opting to have one type of flower/plant per pot.  Geraniums and petunias are my go-to's - I went with a classic pink (baby face) for the geraniums and my absolute favorite purple (bordeaux) for the petunias.  I love how the pentunias have the lighter purple, with the dark towards the center of the bloom. To complete my trio of pots, this year I went with licorice.  My mom had planted some last year, and I really liked the shape of the leaves and the color so I knew I wanted to have some for myself this year.

Also new this year, are 'mosquito shockers' (pictured below next to the geranium).  My backyard is a haven for bugs, and I really wanted to try some lemongrass this year to try and help keep them at bay.  Well, the nursery didn't have any lemongrass, but it did have these plants.  I feel like the leaves are really neat, and with the purple-ish color around the stems, they compliment my petunias.  I have three scattered around my deck, and am hopeful that they will help with the whole bug situation.  I haven't issues with bugs that much since planting them, but I also think it's a little too early for them to be super bad, so I can't credit the plants quite yet.

I took a picture of the tags, which include the specific colors, in case you are interested in looking when out picking up flowers for yourself!

Everything is already looking so great, as we have had a decent amount of rain, and it hasn't been too hot yet.  The geraniums are in full bloom, and the petunias are starting to bloom, as well.  I have already been enjoying them while out on the deck, and I love seeing the pop of pink through the windows when I am inside.  I can't wait until they grow even more, and really fill out those pots.

If you want to take a look at year's past, you can check out the posts below.  

Past Posts:
May Flowers: 2015 (Includes the step by step of planting)

May Flowers: 2016 

May Flowers: 2017 

May Flowers: 2018 (no post here - I moved into my condo mid-summer and it looks like I never did a post on what flowers we ended up with!)

May Flowers: 2019 



Cookbook Review: Magnolia Table

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I am back today to share another cookbook review.  If you missed it, back in January I shared my thoughts on True Comfort from Kristin Cavallari (currently on sale for $10.48!).  You can see the full post here, if you'd like to check it out.  Spoiler alert - I am a big fan of that cookbook.


Another cookbook I am a big fan of?  Magnolia Table from Joanna Gaines.  Like many people, I was a big fan of Fixer Upper.  So much so, that my mom and I road tripped down to Waco to check out the Silos.  And it was awesome!  


When I found out Joanna had a cookbook coming out, I was super excited about it, and knew I wanted a copy.  I got it, poured through it, and then it sat untouched for a bit.  When I realized that I had yet to make a recipe from it, I made it one of my monthly goes to do just that, and I am so glad I did!


Before I get to the recipes, though, let me back up and talk about the cookbook in general.



I was smittened by this cookbook just reading the introduction.  I feel like she took my feelings about cooking, and put it on paper.  I got to the recipes and that feeling just grew.  There were SO MANY recipes I wanted to try, and SO MANY recipes that seemed so 'real'.  Because let's be honest, some cookbooks are filled with recipes that while they may sound good, once you hit the ingredient section, and the instructions, you think to yourself ok....maybe this doesn't sound as good as I thought, haha!  Or sometimes, even the recipe name is a bit intimidating.  To me, this is not that cookbook.  Sure, there are some more involved recipes, but there are also recipes that use 'cream of' soup, which is never a bad thing in my mind.  What I am trying to say, is that if you are looking for a cookbook that is full of good recipes, with approachable recipes, this is it.


Ok, onto the recipes I have made!


Three-Cheese Quiche.  This quiche was super yummy, and super easy to make.  While there is a pie crust recipe in the cookbook, I used store bought (which is also listed as an option in the recipe), which made it come together in no time.  This was perfect for brunch, and reheated for an easy dinner the following day.


After-School Banana Bread.  To be honest, I am not the best at making banana bread.  Even if I follow the recipe perfectly, if it is a loaf, I almost always under bake it.  When I saw this was in an 8x8 pan, I thought, huh, maybe this is one I won't under bake.  And sure enough, it turned out so good!  It might have something to do with the sugar you sprinkle all over the top, but goodness gracious, this is delicious.  And another easy one!  I did omit the nuts - when I was making this for the first time, I was making it for friends, some of whom have nut allergies - but I am sure it is great with them.  I will say, we all loved it with out.  So much so, that at least two of the girls purchased the cookbook having the banana bread (and chocolate chip cookies - more on those later!).


Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas.  This is one of my all time favorite recipes!  I have lost count of how many times I have made these.  They are goooood!  And easy to throw together, too.  And easy to freeze.  I often split a recipe into two smaller pans (usually 8x8), one to make and one to freeze.  Joanna has a Mexican Rice recipe, which I still need to try, but she also recommends pairing it with Knorr Mexican Rice.  I go the Knorr route, but opt for the Taco flavor.  SO GOOD!  And another that reheats super well, too.


Baked Chicken with Bacon Bottom & Wild Rice.  Oh my stars, this was delicious!  The need for a 3 inch deep pan is no joke - this recipe makes a lot and since I didn't have a deep pan, I had to split it into two - but goodness is it good!  I just remember how delicious it smelled.  Comfort food to the max - I am already thinking of how good it will taste come fall/winter.


Grilled Raspberry-Chipotle Pork Tenderloin.  For me, this recipe was a bit of a dud.  The flavors weren't there for me, but hey, you can't win them all!


Chocolate Chip Cookies.  I was told that these were the best chocolate chip cookies ever!  To be honest, I am partial to my Aunt Becky's cookies, but these are huge crowd pleaser, and they are really easy to throw together.  I pretty much always have the ingredients on hand, so when I have needed somewhat of a last minute dessert, these are it.  Crowd pleaser, and easy...what more could you ask for?


Those are the recipes I have made thus far from Magnolia Table.  As I was paging through it to ensure I included them all, I was reminded at how many others I want to give a try.  I will definitely be adding to this post as I give them a go.


Minus the one recipe that wasn't my favorite (I am excluding that, because odds are out of a cookbook full of recipes, there are going to be a few you won't like, so that is to be expected, plus the others are so good they super out weigh the one bad), there is one con about this cookbook, and that is the fact that it doesn't stay open very well.  I have cookbook holder that I pull out to use when cooking from this cookbook, and while it's not great, it's enough to get the job done, so I would recommend getting one, too!  


So, to tie this post up, my final thoughts are that I would highly recommend this cookbook to anyone and everyone.  It's chalk full of good recipes, and bonus, it has a great look too, so doubles as great kitchen decor.  With Mother's Day just around the corner, it would make a great gift, too!


If you have made any of the Magnolia Table recipes, I'd love to hear which ones!  I am always up for a good recommendation!