Monday, August 18, 2014

Clean Crispy Chicken Parm w/Squoodles + Weekend Recap

Happy Monday! Big surprise this week- I'm on top of my game enough to have a post out on Monday!

We had friends over for dinner the other night and Harrison and I came up with this awesomely crispy chicken parm. I've never been a big chicken parm person but this was good, and we were able to throw it together pretty quickly.

Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 30 mins
Servings: 4

  • 1.5 lbs chicken breasts, thawed (we flattened our's out with a meat tenderizer then sliced each one into about 9 strips) ($6.00)
  • 3 eggs, whisked ($.50)
  • 1/2 cup corn starch  ($.40)
  • 2/3 cup ground flaxseed (PS I found ground flaxseed at Trader Joe's for the best price)
  • 1 Tablespoon Italian seasoning 
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 medium sized squashes, sliced into strips with a Mandolin  
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil 
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 cups of your choice of spaghetti sauce (I use garlic & basil sauce from Trader Joe's)
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Set up your stations: 1 medium sized bowl with the corn starch, 1 medium bowl with the eggs, 1 medium bowl with the ground flaxseed mixed with the Italian seasoning and garlic powder, and a non-stick baking sheet.

Dip each chicken strip into the corn starch, then the egg, then the flaxseed/seasoning mix, then set on the baking sheet. Do this for all the chicken strips. Bake for 25 minutes. While chicken is baking, cook the squoodles . After 25 minutes, remove from the oven and glob 3 spoonfuls of the sauce onto each chicken strip, then sprinkle the mozzarella cheese on top. Put it back in the oven for another 5 minutes.

Top the squoodles with the chicken. We served it with my friend Allie's caprese salad and it. was. banginnnn.

So on to  the weekend recap. If you read this blog you may or may not have picked up on the fact that I am nerd alert central: I get my rocks off crunching numbers in Excel, making charts and graphs, learning new statistical methods, reading studies, and all things NPR. So when I found out that you can go on TOURS OF NPR'S HEADQUARTERS I booked that immediately. We did it Friday and OMG:

When you're listening to Morning Edition and other national NPR programs, this is where the producers sit:

We got to sit in the actual sound studios, put on headphones, play with microphones, nerd out big time. Fun fact: NPR listeners on the West Coast hear the best quality shows because of the 3 hour delay- producers can go back and fix little things they don't like by the time it airs in California, but here on the East Coast we have a mere 3 minute delay so there's not that kind of time. Crazy huh? Or is that just me?

We hit up the Building Museum to see the giant human maze  and I had a panic attack just looking at it:

That evening we went to Jazz in the Garden, then tried out a new restaurant rooftop called 1905 for a friend's bday (def recommend- food menu looked good and great beer and cocktail options):

Saturday I went on a Boomerang Tubing Tour (we decided to do a redneck theme for our party) for a friend's bday we loaded a coach bus with booze and food and rode 2 hours to the Shenandoah valley..beautiful and so fun!

Nothing says redneck like temporary tats and lime-a-ritas. I don't even want to talk about how hard I scrubbed my arm to get my tats off before church the next morning...

Sunday we hit up a new DC brewery called Right Proper Brewing Company and they had this super funky mural that I am obsessed with:

Linking up today with Biana- come play!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Review: Arm & Hammer Truly Radiant

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Arm & Hammer Truly Radiant for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.
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While I received the Arm & Hammer Truly Radiant SpinBrush, Toothpaste, and Whitening Booster for free, these are 100% my own opinions and I would never write about a product I haven’t tried. Here is what I received:

So I've been weighing options for whitening systems before the wedding, and I actually really liked these products. Unlike other whitening toothpastes I’ve used, my mouth actually felt clean after using them—like I didn’t need to brush my teeth after I brushed my teeth. I also LOVED the SpinBrush, I’ve never had one before!
The whitening booster goes right on top of the toothpaste and has kind of a funky taste, but it didn’t really bother me that much.

I brushed twice a day for 5 days (yes just FIVE DAYS) and I could swear I noticed them looking whiter (eternal optimism maybe, but I felt good!). I liked that I didn’t have to add anything to my routine for the whitening to kick in, just do what I’ve always been doing. I checked out the prices at WalMart and at $3.50 for the toothpaste, $10 for the whitening booster, and $8 for the SpinBrush, it’s a lot less expensive than most whitening options. (PS: You can see where to buy here)- Plus they have a money back guarantee!

Can you tell the difference? I swear I could tell a difference, not so sure if these pix support the evidence though? The bottom is me feeling insanely awkward because let’s be real, I’m just not a selfie person. I am in fact top 10 most awkward people you’ll ever meet. But that’s besides the point.

So here’s the deal with Arm & Hammer Truly Radiant:  the key benefits of Arm & Hammer Truly Radiant are cleaning, strengthening, and whitening for a more radiant smile. It removes 100% more surface stains than ordinary toothpaste and is the only paste with baking soda, peroxide and active calcium.

The Arm & Hammer Truly Radiant Spinbrushes remove 100% more plaque than a manual toothbrush, and the Arm & Hammer Truly Radiant Whitening Booster is clinically proven to whiten teeth in just one week and contains 3x more whitening agent than a leading white strip (I’ve always been one for efficiency).

You can visit Truly Radiant’s website to see Alison Sweeney’s (Alison Sweeney! What up Biggest Loser!!) tips to live radiantly and tips to bring out your inner radiance. Truly Radiantwants to know how we live radiantly every day—you know how I do it? I do things I love every day, no matter what. Whether it is walking my dog, exercising, hanging out with friends, or sipping some wine, I do something I love every day. Go to the website and share how you bring out your inner radiance!

Check out  Truly Radiant's website to learn more about this product. 

Visit Sponsor's Site

Curly Hair Must-Haves (Curly Products and Curly Hair Tutorials)

I have naturally curly hair and let me tell you something: there is nothing I hate more than crunchy curls (ew, it hurt me to type that), except maybe spending a million dollars on hair products that don't work out for my type of hair. These are my fav curly hair products that keep my hair soft and bouncy (not crunchy) that you can find at any drug store:

1.  Garnier Fructis Curl Cream: I usually put 2-3 squirts of this in right when I get out of the shower. It is really light and not sticky at all.

2.  Revlon RV544PKF 1875W Tourmaline Ionic Ceramic Dryer with Diffuser: I haaaate having wet hair, and thick curly hair takes ageessssss to dry. I can dry my hair in under 10 minutes every time, and the diffuser is a must have for curly hair.

3. DOVE Style + Strength + Flexible Hold Hairspray: This is a must have for updos, or for when I throw my hair up/pin it back/twist it up because frizzies and flyaways can get out of control. No crunchiness, no helmet hair, just a soft, smell-good hold. I spray it on after I've styled my hair the way I want it. Added bonus: it smells good, not like most hair sprays that remind me of grandmas for some reason.

4. Herbal Essence Touchably Soft Mousse: I always put this in my wet or dry hair before I style it. No flakes, no crunch, and it makes my hair super easy to style.

5. ISO Bouncy Creme Curl Texturizer: I've been hooked on this stuff since 9th grade! I love love loveee it! It smells SO good, keeps your hair soft and frizz-free all day. I can't recommend this stuff enough! I usually order mass quantities on Amazon.

6.  Dry Shampoo: I wash my hair 1-2 times/week so this is a must. It keeps my hair shiny and oil-free between washes- I just spray a few sprays on the roots of my hair and toussle it a little.
**note: while I do not wash my hair every day, I DO wet it in the shower and rinse sweat and stuff out of it. When I get out I add a little more Bouncy Creme and blow dry it to keep it looking full and alive!

Some of my fav curly hair do's when I'm in a hurry and/or it is too hot to have hair on my neck (spoiler alert- I side twist my hair every other day- it all looks super complex on curly hair but it is very, very simple):


Fav Curly Hair Youtube Tutorials:

So, I'm in search of some good leave-in conditioner that's not going to break my bank. Any suggestions? What are your must have hair products???