Mandarins

Mother’s Day Dinner Recap

Dinner tonight was perfect and I think my mom and grandma both were very happy! 🙂

The drive to Philly was uneventful – – I was sure I was going to hit tons of traffic since tomorrow is Mother’s Day, but somehow it was smooth sailing the whole way from DC to Philly. There were a few slow moving parts of the trip, especially around tolls, but I left just before 12 noon and made it by 2:30!

I brought some snacks to munch on in the car. (Don’t worry – these pictures were taken BEFORE my drive, not during.)

A few grapes.

Three mandarins.

And a KIND Bar – Almond & Apricot flavor.  This was SO good, I honestly can’t believe I went on so long without KIND Bars. I was always a little nervous about having a lot of calories in bars just because I feel like I could eat 3 and still not be full, but these are full of nuts and fruit, so they’re not only delicious, but filling too. Stay tuned because I’m going to be doing a reader giveaway for some of these KIND Bars next week!

After I made it to Philly, my sister and I got to work with cooking! We were lucky to have picked a bunch of dishes we could make beforehand and serve at room temp, so dinner time wasn’t stressful at all. After prepping a lot of the dishes for dinner, I was pretty hungry so I had a little bowl of leftover tomato soup

and some half sour pickles.

We took Wendy’s dog, Sadie, on a walk for about 30-45 minutes after that and it felt good to walk around. The day was gorgeous even though it was a little windy so it was so nice to be outside. My parents came around 5 and we set out some appetizers to munch on while we chatted and drank some wine.

Green olives, goat cheese (covered in ash, paprika, herbs, and plain), a goat cheese red pepper spread, and some sliced baguette and crackers. I munched on a little of everything and it was really good even though I’ve had a LOT of goat cheese today. But cheese and I are friends so I didn’t mind too much. 😉

For a first course (or second, depending on how you want to look at it ;)), we had Chilled Beet Soup.

My sister made this by adding a chopped onion, 1.5 pounds of beets, and 5 cups of water to a pot. She cooked it for 40 minutes, and then pureed it with a hand mixer. So simple, but it was INCREDIBLE. (Also,0 WW points for this soup!) We garnished it with some sour cream and fresh chives from her backyard.

The main course was…

Soft Shell Crabs!! One of my absolute favorites but I hadn’t had them in soooo long. We just dipped these in egg wash and then a mixture of cornmeal and flour, and then cooked them in a pan with hot oil for about 2-3 minutes a side. They crisped up and were out of this world.

We had three side dishes to go with the crabs.

A Smoky Pasta Salad that I was in charge of. We just mixed smoked mozzarella, grape tomatoes, fresh basil, olive oil, salt and pepper into the cooked pasta. It was simple but delicious, especially if you like smoky flavors because the mozzarella really popped in this dish.

Roasted Corn and Wild Mushrooms with Arugula Flowers.

Watercress and Endive Salad with homemade vinaigrette.

Here’s my plate:

A softshell crab and some of each of the sides. Everything was delicious, and I was so happy to use those arugula flowers! They are so pretty but added that same peppery flavor you get from regular arugula. And the softshell crabs were just perfect. They’re one of my mom’s favorites too so she was a happy camper, too.

Then came dessert, which was amaaaaaaazing.

Doesn’t that look professional?? My sister and I made it FROM SCRATCH, though she deserves most of the credit.  She was in charge of the crust, and I made the custard filling, and then we topped it with fresh strawberries she picked up at the Farmer’s Market. My piece:

Ahhh it was so good and such an amazing way to end the meal. I don’t know the last time I had something made from scratch that I actually helped make so it tasted that much better! Dinner wrapped up around 8:30 so my parents went home and now I’m just watching a movie with my sis and her hubby.

I am exhauuuusted so will definitely be going to bed soon. I hope Saturday is treating you well, too!

Community Book Room

Whew what a day! I am feeling so exhausted I can barely keep my eyes open – it’s going to be an early night! I don’t even know if I’ll make it through Nurse Jackie… one of my favorite shows right now, so that says something!

One of the reasons I’m so tired is because I stayed up too late last night because I’ve was reading this book. There is a community book room in my apartment complex and it is such an awesome thing to have. Basically, its a room on the lobby level full of books. You can go in there any time you’re looking for a new read and take it with you. I always put a lot of good books in there when I’m done reading, and sometimes find some really great books I never would have discovered otherwise. The book I’m currently reading was in there and it says on the front, “Highly recommended for fans of authors like Jodi Picoult and Jacequelyn Michard.” It had me right there – Jodi Picoult is one of my favorite authors. I’ve read almost all of her novels and loved each one. This book is a little sad but its the kind you read where you cannot put it down. I’ve been reading it on the metro to/from work and I’ve definitely missed my stop more than once! 🙂

My afternoon snack today was a Pineapple Chobani with the last of the Fiber One in my desk.

I had it around 4pm and it held me over really well. I never would have tried the 2% yogurt had Chobani not sent me the samples, and I’m so glad I did. It has the same number of WW Points as the nonfat kinds (3 pts) but keeps me full for a lot longer.

After work, I took the 6pm Bikram tonight. It was hard! It’s day 3 in a row for me and since it was so humid outside, the class itself was really hot and sweaty, even more than normal. Not to mention, 6pm is the time of choice for a lot of people who go after work, so it was packed. People were practically on top of each other, and when you’re that sweaty, the last thing you want is someone else who’s equally sweaty touching you! I can definitely tell that I’m getting better at the postures and really enjoy it, but tomorrow I’m going to take the day off from it.

When I got home, I was starving and I opened my fridge and saw the leftover pizza from Saturday night. I heated it up for 45 seconds and devoured it.

Two sliced of wild mushroom pizza with 4 types of cheese… yum! It was delish. After my pizza, I was craving some fruit, so I had three mandarins.

And then as I sat down to write this I realized I wanted something else, so I had a huge banana.

I had to take a bite before I could snap a pic. 😉

I’m off to relax and hopefully get to bed early tonight.

Be back tomorrow!