The Excellent Adventures of Kim and Kev

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Mardi Gras

Remembering the year we are currently in does wonders for my planning.

The funny thing is that I was trying to plan what I was going to make this year and couldn't remember what I made last year.  (Except for the beignets - because those are always memorable).  So, I went back through my blog archives and researched it.

Thank goodness for this blog!  Otherwise the majority of my experiences would be forgotten.  I blame it on the ungodly amount of hairspray used in the 80's. And too much Mtv.  My parents both have good brains, so there is no other excuse.  In fact, when I started telling my Mom what we did this year for Mardi Gras - she recounted the details from last year like it had just happened!

Sometimes I don't even remember what I blogged the day before.  Yikes!

Anyway, we had a special (belated) Valentine's Day dinner date with my parents on Tuesday - so, we went ahead and celebrated Mardi Gras on Sunday. 

I had to work all day on Sunday but lucked out and found the perfect jambalaya recipe on Pinterest.

Thank goodness for slow cookers. 

And for Kev who made sure to turn it on at the right time.

All I had to do when I got home was put the shrimp and rice in and make the cornbread.

The jambalaya was pretty good - we skipped the sausage and just used chicken and shrimp.  I just can't ever seem to get things as spicy as we would like them.  But it is nothing that a little hot sauce can't fix!

The cornbread was perfection!  As always.  It is truly my favorite cornbread of all time.  And I ALWAYS seem to get it as spicy as we like it!  In fact, if I am making the cornbread for people that don't care for spiciness - then I just leave out the jalapenos.

And then I pout in the corner because the bread doesn't taste as good.

I also sauteed some okra on the side.  Kev is not necessarily a fan - especially when it is not fried - but me and okra go way back and I just think that it is delicious!

For dessert I went with King Cake.

I knew by the time that I got home and we ate dinner that it would be too late to start making beignets.  Plus, Kev had never had King Cake so I felt like it was my job to introduce it to him.

When I was growing up, I had a friend whose Dad worked construction in New Orleans during the week.  We would go to pick him up from the airport on Friday nights ( and would take anything and every thing we could think of to run through the x-ray machine to see what was inside.  ie; cabbage patch dolls, barbies, stuffed animals, etc - good times!) and he would always bring us a King Cake.

We would stuff it in our faces as fast as we could to see who would find the hidden baby and receive good luck.

I don't remember the cake actually tasting that great - but finding the prize more than made up for it.

It's too bad that finding the prize as an adult doesn't do the same.

Publix didn't even hide it for us....

I had to quickly hide the baby inside to give Kev the full experience.
Luckily, he found it with the first cut!

Because he didn't really eat much more than that first slice - he was not a fan.  It was basically a danish COVERED in sugar.  With a little more sugar poured on top.

But at least he got to experience it.

And at least he will have good luck all year!

He also will be eating jambalaya until the end of days.  Just a warning:  It makes a TON!  And since I only had one helping, he is responsible for the rest.  He doesn't seem to mind, though, because he gets to eat the cornbread right along with it.  And we could eat that cornbread every day FOREVER.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Valentine's Day

A day of love.

For food.

Which is really just like any other day in our household.

February 14th was the last day of my cleanse ( recap to come soon!).  So, therefore, I decided to go over the top for Kev's meal since I wouldn't be eating it anyway.

That meant it involved bacon.  And butter.  And lots and lots of cheese.

Basically, what Paula Deen's dreams are made of.

And Bobby Flay's.  Considering that I got the recipe from him.

I have been making Kev shrimp and grits for years.  Minus the bacon and minus the majority of the butter and cheese.

And he has enjoyed it just fine.

Until he discovered what he was missing.

This recipe made his hair stand on end.

And he may have screamed upon first bite.  It was hard to tell because his mouth was closed....

But the guy who almost NEVER goes back for seconds ( due to his love for eating in moderation - which I find fascinating and impossible), went back for seconds. 

And then proclaimed that it would blow my skirt up.

I made sure to put on pants in case a bite found it's way in to my mouth.

And then just tried to stay focused on my dinner.

My dinner was the anti- shrimp and grits.  Nutritious and healthy and able to be eaten in moderation.
It was a large plate of mixed greens + roasted asparagus + Endurance crackers + Tabouleh.

It was awesome, though.  As usual.

For Kev's dessert, I surprised him with something new.  Red Velvet Whoopie Pies.

I took the easy way out and just bought a cake mix. 
I had never made them before and didn't want to waste a lot of time and ingredients if they didn't turn out.  PLUS Duncan Hines is always a winner.
A Christmas gift card helped me to purchase the whoopie pie pan from Michael's.
These treats were really so easy to make - especially since I went with a box mix.

And had the help of my awesome frosting squirter from Pampered Chef.

The only thing that could have made these treats more fun to eat would have been if I had put them on a stick.

Because we all know how much Kev loves eating things off of a stick.

These are the perfect ratio ( for Kev) of cake and frosting.  And can be made in any flavor that I would make cupcakes in.

I think I chose a winner!

Just like when I chose Kev to be my Valentine.  Awww.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Strange Obsession

It is no secret that we LOVE our television shows.

We spend every single evening in our recliners ( that don't recline anymore) parked in front of the t.v. catching up on our long list of recorded shows.

But even though I thoroughly enjoy a lot of them ( CSI, Criminal Minds, NCIS, The Mentalist, all of the awesome comedies, and just about anything that HBO or Showtime produces), I don't LOVE any of them right now.

Ever since LOST ended, there hasn't been a series that has kept me on the edge of my seat... counting the days until the next episode.

Until now. 

It is totally not the type of show you would think that I would be interested in.  Think zombies.

And, honestly, when Kev tried to get me watch it the first season, I rolled my eyes and scoffed at the idea of zombies over taking the World.

But it is so much more than that. 

This is where I tell you my strange obsession of movies/shows that feature some catastrophic event that ends the World as we know it.  And a handful of survivors have to figure out how to... well, survive.

I'm not sure if it is because I watched Night Of The Comet over and over and over during my youth or if the mini-series The Stand completely blew my mind. 

All I know is that these types of shows really make me think as to how I would live, what I would do, what I would eat, etc. 

And just like LOST, we spend the end of each episode discussing every thing that just happened.

Well, I discuss it.  Kev answers the best he can and then probably debates on whether he should continue letting me watch such things.

So, needless to say, the premiere of The Walking Dead was on Sunday night.  A long awaited premiere that I had scribbled on my calendar for months!  And the meal that included the premiere is what I was referring to when I told you we were celebrating on Sunday..... just like old times when we celebrated the beginning and ending of LOST. <= Did we really do that?!?!

Because I had missed the entire first season, Kev made sure to record every episode so I could get all of the back story.  We spent the week leading up to the premiere getting caught up.  And planning our celebratory meal.

I usually have a pretty easy theme to follow... but the circumstances of the show didn't really leave much of an option.  So, I decided to go with "farm food" considering there is a lot of living off of the land going on.

Remember that I did use the word strange in the title of this post.

Anyway, I saw these precious little carrots in the grocery store and built a meal off of them...

We also had roasted sweet potatoes, asparagus, greens... and garbanzo beans + a drizzle of hot mustard.  ( Canned beans and mustard have a long shelf life - so, I'm sure they would be available)

Kev added a roasted chicken!

The meal did not disappoint.  And neither did the show.

Nor the hour long conversation that I had to have with Kev afterwards to discuss what had just happened.

There is even a LIVE talk show after each episode to analyze the series.

Which,thankfully, means that we (mainly just me!) are not alone in our strange obsession.

You can check it out on AMC.  Which is also the home to my other new favorite show "Hell on Wheels".  The Wild West + building railroads + cowboys + gun fights = right up my alley.  In fact, I believe AMC has just been proclaimed our new favorite network.

And we take those types of proclamations very seriously.

Monday, February 13, 2012


There is nothing that I love more than a sweet baby in a Bumbo seat.

Especially if that baby is my nephew.
Seeing his sweet face just brightened my day!

Even if I did have to run a race in the freezing ( to me!) temperatures!

I have registered for winter races before but have always lucked out on the weather not being so bad.

And to be honest ( and less dramatic), I was perfectly fine once the race got started.

It was just interesting and funny to watch me pin my bib on while shivering.

The race was to benefit St. Lawerence Place. 

The event not only had an awesome turnout, but it was so well organized and fun. 

Even if I did not run the best race of my life, I still finished with an 11 minute mile pace. ( I did walk/run for the last half)  My goal is to cut that WAY down this year.  I am hoping that our treadmill will help me with some speed work.

It is hard to be a fast runner when you have manatee in your genes.

The best part of the race was that Chick-fil-A handed out WARM chicken biscuits at the finish line!
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Just because I am not eating chicken + biscuits right now didn't mean that someone in my family couldn't enjoy it.

Like Kev.

He got the biscuit.  I got the banana. 

And we  both had a great start to a very busy day!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

The Awesome Avocado

It is Sunday night and I am currently in the middle of a(nother) celebration that will pretty much ensure that you start to question my sanity.

Don't worry.  I will definitely be telling you all about it. 

Just not tonight. 

Mainly because I only have thirty minutes before the next portion of the evening begins and I have an ENTIRE weekend worth of adventures to blog about.

Starting with Thursday.  The day that I deemed the start of my weekend due to a bonding moment between my niece, an egg, an avocado and me.

The quadruple threat of awesomeness.

This is the picture that I woke up to...
A picture that Laura named "Avocado Face".

Something that I wish that I had every single day.

Despite the absolute cuteness, it immediately gave me major cravings for fresh avocado - which luckily I just happened to have.

Gotta love "buy one get one free" deals at Publix.

I didn't want to mix it with my usual guacamole mix-ins - I wanted to eat it fresh out of the skin - just like Caroline.

Kind of like eating breakfast with her even though she is a million miles away.

This is what I came up with...
Smashed avocado on Ezekiel bread with two over easy eggs on top.

Things happened in my kitchen that day.  Absolute taste explosions times fifty.

It was incredible!! 

I texted Kev to tell him my new found love - to which he responded "all you ever do is talk about eggs".

And then he changed his phone number and moved out in to the back yard.

I can't help it.  Two of my favorite foods have come together for the first time in my life.

And there is no going back.

Other than that, I worked out six days last week!  SIX!

Something about getting to put a star on my calendar once I complete a workout has surprisingly re motivated me.

Except it is not really all that surprising.  Stars have always helped me achieve goals.  From potty training to brushing my teeth to sleeping in the bed all night.

(Unfortunately, some of the above "star earning" reasons have been recent.)

And yes, my calendar is pretty much used for planning what Kev is going to eat for lunch and dinner + my schedule at work + my work out schedule.

I live a pretty intense life, folks. 

And with that... I am out of time.  I guess you will just have to wait for details of the rest of the weekend.

Off to celebrate!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The Tripod

I was able to perform my tripod tonight in a room full of people.

A room PACKED full of people.

People that had shown up for the 6pm yoga class at Gold's.

I had never been to that class - as I have decided that I prefer hot yoga ( not taught at Gold's), but due to the fact that the gym is still insanely crowded and there was no way I would make it to spin in time, I chose the next best thing.

Plus, I was in desperate need of a really good stretch.

Upon first glance in the room, I knew there was no way that I would make it in.  But then the instructor had some people move their mats around ( which I'm sure made them so very happy) and motioned for us ( quite a group had gathered at the door) to come in.

Let's just say that I smelled feet the ENTIRE class.  Mainly because that is how close my face was to the person in front of me.

I can only imagine what the person behind me was thinking. ( or smelling!)

Anyway, it was tough.  And even though the instruction was great - I realized how much Yoga Masala has spoiled me and that trying to take at Gold's is probably not the best thing for me.

Especially since my favorite part at the end ( meditation)  was spoiled by the thud of heavy weights being dropped on the floor above me.

But back to the tripod...

I felt pretty special when the class was instructed to get in to a head stand or a tripod - depending on our skill level - and I was able to get in to the tripod immediately.

( Lots of people were doing the head stand!  In such a crowded space! Very impressive! I've officially added the unassisted head stand to my resolutions.)

While in position, I remembered that my sweet 5 month old nephew, Tanner, had requested a picture of me performing my talent.

And what Tanner wants... Tanner gets! :)

The funny thing is that Kev never bats an eye at my shenanigans and requests.

"Sure!", he says when I asked him to photograph my trick.

Never a dull moment around here.

I have now worked out four days in a row.  And I'm feeling great!

My true test to see if  I am back on track will be if I can complete my 5K race this weekend without walking. 

But then again, even if I do it will be more than I was doing a month ago.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

I Feel The Need...

The need for seed!

Sunflower + Pepita + Sesame + Chia = My favorite cracker of all time.

That's right - OF ALL TIME.

It is no secret that I love my appetizers - specifically dips and crackers.  Crackers, unfortunately, that just happen to be processed.

And processed is a no-no for at least the next ten days.  And possibly forever.

That's why I proclaimed it my lucky day when I came across this recipe for Endurance Crackers from Angela at Oh She Glows.

And just in time for our Super Bowl Party, too!

I used my zester to grate the onion in to the water.

And then mixed every thing together.  The chia seeds soak up the water and help to create a thick "batter".
I spread the batter out on the parchment paper in the pan...
And put it in the oven to bake.

I used my pizza cutter to cut them in to crackers half way through baking.

And then I tasted them.

And they were delicious!

The perfect accompaniment to hummus or onion dip.

Or any other healthy dip, for that matter.

The other plus is that they are very filling.  Which means it is easy to eat a couple and be satisfied. 

Even for me.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

A Super Day

This is what I came home to today after I got off of work....
 Doors wide open!

It was such a gorgeous day!

It made all of the chores so much easier to do.

Kev must have read my earlier post about the eyesore in our sunroom....  Otherwise known as the old treadmill....because he moved it out in to the garage.  The move prompted a good cleaning of the space along with rearranging of furniture.

All completed with a refreshing breeze blowing in and out of the room.

After chores, I rewarded myself with a  run on my new toy.

Reasons why I love running at home:

1.  Complimentary towel service - delivered in the nick of time by Kev.
2.  Big screen t.v. blaring The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.
3.  Singing and talking out loud ( to the t.v.) without a care in the world.
4.  Jumping in the shower within minutes of finishing my run.

Actually, #4 is Kev's reason.  I could go all day and night without a shower. 

Especially since I had already taken one before I left for work.

Work done.  Chores done.  Exercise done.  Shower done.

 Then it was time to PARTY!!

I started with the appetizers.

Onion dip for me:

 I just sliced half of a red onion and sauteed it in some oil for about 15 minutes.
 And then mixed the caramelized goodness with 1 1/2 cups of plain Greek yogurt.
 And a cheeseball + crackers for Kev:

 Served on a platter in front of the t.v because we are fancy like that.

My crackers were made completely of seeds!! And they were delish!  I will post the recipe soon.

The main course for Kev:
 Ham sliders + Pepperoni roll ups.   Both recipes from one of my favorite blogs.

I made the ham sliders with Havarti instead of Swiss.  And I made the pepperoni rolls ups with pepper jack string cheese instead of mozzarella.

( Ham sliders will always remind me of a fun(ny) night spent with my brand new ( at the time) sister-in-law, Laura.  There is never a dull moment when hanging out with us.  Unless it is after 10pm and then we get pretty boring.)

Served with salt and pepper chips:
 Kev said it was excellent!

And a delicious combination of food.

And that he is so full that he is about to pop.

I had a boring but yummy sweet potato.  Then I checked my calendar again to see when this cleanse is over.

Kev's dessert is going to be freshly baked cookies...

Oatmeal + chocolate chips + peanut butter chips + sea salt.

A recreation of a recipe that we saw on a cooking show last weekend.

Except for his dessert might turn in to his breakfast based on his continuous comments on how full he is.

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Saturday Surprises!

Leave it to Kev to make an uneventful Saturday eventful.

He always knows how to get me when I least expect it!

Introducing... Our new roommate!

Now I can run at home!

My favorite way to run at the gym is in the theater room.  I love the dark.  I love watching a movie.  I love the gym's treadmills.

I have been blabbering about it for almost two years.

We did have a treadmill at home.  But it was created in 1776.  It was one of the first big items we purchased when we were newly married.  We got it from Service Merchandise ( any one remember that place?) and the poor guy trying to sell it to us almost broke his neck showing us how it worked.  The speed had been left on the highest setting ( it just had a dial that you turned - which I'm sure was super high tech for the 90's) and he was standing on it when he put the key in. 

I've never seen legs move so fast!  Kind of like Fred Flinstone's - except for this guy was NOT trying to drive a car.

It was pretty funny - after we made sure the guy was o.k.  It was totally something that I would have done.

Anyway, the treadmill served us well.  Until I discovered the running heaven that is the professional grade treadmills.  Wide + long track.  Smooth  belt.  Settings other than a dial to challenge you and test your skills.

There was just no going back. 

Kev continued to run on it, though.  Because he didn't know any better.

Until he ran the belt thin and it started to rip.

And then our treadmill hamster ( the creature that kept the motor running - because it was built before real motors were created) decided to retire.

So, Kev folded it up and stuck it in the corner of the sun room.  And I've been giving it the stink eye for months.

Then last week Kev asked me my work schedule for the weekend.  And seemed thrilled that I was closing on Saturday.

That is when I knew that something must be up. ( Because who wouldn't want me around on a Saturday night... running my mouth non stop while they were trying to watch television and relax??)

He surprised me last night over dinner.  He told me something was being delivered between 10pm and noon and I had to guess what it was.

I guessed workout equipment or furniture - to which he responded.... "Well, sometimes you use it as furniture!"

And that's when I knew it was a treadmill. ( I am guilty of using our old treadmill as a closet from time to time.)

Fortunately, I had on flip flops.  Because I can only jump so high when I'm wearing them.

If I had been wearing tennis shoes, my head would probably still be stuck in the ceiling.

I was SO excited!

The guys that delivered it were awesome.  They not only lugged it up in to the weight room, but they put it together and took the time to show me how it worked. 

The second that they left, I had my boots off and my tennis shoes on and was stepping on for a run.  A run that only lasted five minutes because that is about how long it took me to start to sweat.  And I had to be at work in an hour.

Kev said that he got on it the minute that he walked in the door.  And stayed on it for 50 minutes. 

We are so weird.

Our home gym is almost complete.  Now, if only I could find an awesome yoga instructor that made house calls. 

Friday, February 3, 2012

The Plan

I've got my plans/goals/resolutions to post for the new year.
And it only took me about a month to put it together.
Sometimes I wish I could be more like Kev and just deal with each day as it comes.  He is consistent and balanced and does everything in moderation.
Except for when it comes to buying plants and trees.

And watching Sci Fi.

And singing karaoke.

(I totally lied about that last one.) 

(But the visual of it just made me laugh out loud.)
But then we would be the exact same person and that just seems... well, boring.
Even though after reading "my plan", you may think that I am anyway.
I will start with assessing last year's resolutions.  I was pretty much 50/50 with successes and opportunities.

1.  I laughed a TON!  Especially while getting together with family for various events. <= which was another goal of mine - to cherish family more and spend more time with them.  Babies and weddings kept us pretty busy last year.

2.  Nutrition - I researched and learned as much as I possibly could.  I have continued to make major changes in our diets and we both feel so much better for it.  In fact, I have enjoyed the whole process so much that if I was eighteen again I would go to school to become a nutritionist.  (With a minor in cooking and boxing, of course.)

3.  Fitness - I finished my half-marathon with a MUCH better time!  I learned ( and loved) new types of fitness.  I even did a handstand in yoga!

4.  Saving Money- I did o.k - but I can do better.


1.  Photography - Clearly, by the pictures on this blog, I have a long way to go.  I took a class, I read a book, I looked at instructions on line.... and I still struggle.  I just can't seem to get the whole light/aperture/shutter speed/flash thing down.  And I pretty much just take pictures on auto.

2.  Fitness - even though there was a lot of success - there is still plenty of opportunity.  Consistency is key.

3.  Mailing cards/letters.  Um. That never happened.  Except for the two thank-you cards that I sent (and do every year) to my Grandmother.  And those are required by law!

4.  Technology - I'm pretty much a lost cause.

So, after analyzing my performance last year and thinking about what I want to focus on this year...

I've pretty much decided to keep the same resolutions but just take them a step further.

That's right, folks.  You have been waiting on the edge of your seats for an entire month and I'm just re-copying most of last year's plan.

You know the saying... "If it ain't broke...."

Here are my resolutions for 2012:


1.  Continue "eating clean".  Organic.  Nutritious.  Unprocessed.  Light on the meat!

2.  Improve strength.  With weightlifting and yoga.

3.  Improve endurance.  With running and boxing and spin.


1.  Set a budget and stick to it!  Our biggest opportunity is still with the groceries - and I am determined to make that bill as little as possible while still eating as healthy as possible.  As you know, eating and celebrating randomness is our most favorite thing to do - so, if I can master saving money while still maximizing the fun then I will be golden.

2.  Organization.  Getting our home in order - room by room.  Recycling.  Donating.  Selling.  Maximizing what we own.


1.  Enjoying family and friends.  Making memories.  Laughing.  Loving. 

2.  Meeting my nephew, Tanner.

3.  Making the most of my (dream) trip to Yellowstone in August!

I will obviously go in to more detail on the blog on specifics and challenges and achievements... but at least we can now all move on now that my goals are in place! :)

It is definitely a weight off my shoulders.

And now begins year FOUR of The Excellent Adventures of Kim and Kev.........

Thanks so much for reading the craziness that is our lives!!