Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Yummy Potato Soup

Because tonight I need comfort food...

  • 3lbs of potatoes, scrubbed and pierced in several places
  • 1tbsp. of butter
  • 1 1/2 cups of finely chopped onions
  • 2 tbsp. of minced garlic
  • 1 can (14 1/2 oz) of garlic broth
  • 3 cups of milk
  • 1 tsp. of salt
  • 1/4 tsp. of pepper
  • shredded cheddar cheese
  • crumbled bacon
  • chopped scallions
  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Bake the potatoes 1 hour or until tender when pierced. Peel when their cool enough to handle.
  3. Melt the butter in a 4 - 6 qt pot over medium low heat. Stir in onions and garlic, cover and cook 10 minutes until soft, but not brown.
  4. Add 2/3 of the potatoes and mash. Add broth, milk, salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer, stirring occassionally.
  5. Cut remaining potatoes into small cubes, add to soup, and stir gently to reheat.
  6. Sprinkle with shredded cheddar cheese, crumbled bacon, and chopped scallions.


Some days...

I wonder if it's really worth it. I know that it is. I know that this is just the first year adjustment, and really getting to know who the other is. However, somedays, I honestly want to throw in the towel, real talk. Then I the end of the day, will I still love him? Yes. Will this seem like it was really worth separating over 5 years, or 5 months even, from now? No. Does that make it hurt any less? No. So right now I'm choosing to stick it out, go silently within myself, and ask God for a little more peace, joy, and quiet.


Thursday, October 22, 2009

I LOVE My Husband!

Tuesday my husband an I celebrated 4 months of marriage. I know that for some that seems like a silly anniversary to celebrate, but not us. We celebrate our marriage every month, usually by just having a special dinner, to show each other that we appreciate one another. We like to take a moment to sit back and reflect on how much we've changed and gained through marriage. A moment to realize we are truly blessed.

Tuesday was a particularly hard day for me. I was stressed due to a presentation I had to give that nite. It was after the storm of the presentation that I really took a look at my hubby and realized how lucky I am. He quietly gave me my space to deal with my stress, checking on me here and there but pretty much just letting me be. I even kind of snapped and rushed him off the phone when he had called me earlier that day to see what kind of coffee I liked. "How trivial!" I thoguht to myself. There I was stressing about school and he wanted to talk I'm sorry, what sir??? Ugh. Anywho, I rushed home to cook us a nice romantic dinner with a bottle of riesling to accompany it. It was in the midst of cooking that he exclaimed that he had a gift for me. Of course I was excited, what woman wouldn't be?

It was a coffee maker and for me, that was a really big deal. I'm broker than broker and have been wanting a coffee maker forever! Well Sunday I expressed this to him, and apparently, he listened! Not only that, he got me the single cup one with the pods, exactly what I wanted! Squeeeee! Loves it, and loves him. This feels so special to me. Now every time I have a cup of coffee, I think of him, and trust, that's a lot!

~Hidden Gem

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

NRW: Angel Hair Pasta in a Garlic Butter Sauce

For the past two days I have served this with every meal we've had, mainly because hubby says it's addictive. It's fast and easy, and good all by itself. Enjoy!

  • 1 Stick of Butter
  • 1 tablespoon of crushed garlic or garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon of freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1 pound of angel hair pasta

  1. Cook pasta until al dente
  2. Melt butter on medium low heat
  3. Add the garlic, pepper, and salt to the butter and stir
  4. Pour sauce over pasta, mixing well.
  5. Plate pasta, and sprinkle paremesan cheese on top
You could always add some broccoli to this dish, like I did today. Tuesday we enjoyed it with lobster and crab stuffed tilapia, and today with steak. Yummo!
~Hidden Gem

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

NRW: Cream Cheese Bacon Crescents

  • 1 tub (8 oz.) PHILADELPHIA Chive & Onion Cream Cheese Spread
  • 3 slices OSCAR MAYER Bacon, cooked, crumbled
  • 2 cans (8 oz. each) refrigerated crescent dinner rolls  
  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Mix cream cheese spread and bacon in small bowl until well blended.  
  2. Separate each can of dough into 8 triangles each. Cut each triangle in half lengthwise. Spread each dough triangle with 1 generous tsp. cream cheese mixture. Roll up, starting at shortest side of triangle and rolling to opposite point. Place, point sides down, on ungreased baking sheet. 
  3. Bake 12 to 15 min. or until golden brown. Serve warm.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Back to Black

Every once in a while a collection comes along that makes me wish I was making more money (or in this case, making money period since I'm unemployed) and MAC's Style Black is definitely one of them:

Gaw! You have no idea how inlove I am with this collection! I'd been avoiding going into Pentagon City Mall in VA just for that reason. I needed to escape the MAC store and various MAC counters because I knew that this collection would call my name. I currently own the Mineralize Eyeshadows Gilt By Association, a Black with gold bronze pearl and Cinderfella, a Black with silver pearl. I desparately want the Black Cream Colour Base and all of the Nail Lacquer's, but this out of work business is making it impossible. I do, however, accept donations :~)

Mineralize Eye Shadows: $19.00

  • Cinderfella – Black w/ silver pearl
  • Young Punk – Black w/ pink purple pearl
  • Gilt by Association – Black w/ gold bronze pearl
  • Blue Flame – Black w/ blue pearl
Grease Paintstick: $17.50
  • Intense Black – Black w/ purple shimmer
Penultimate Liner: $16.50
  • Rapidblack – True black
Eye Kohl: $14.50
  • Smolder – Intense Black
Lipsticks: $14.00
  • Black Knight – Creamy true black
  • Midnight Media – Matte black
  • Night Violet – Deep grape purple
Glimmerglass: $18.00
  • Bling Black – Sheer black w/ gold pearl
  • Blackfire – Sheer black w/ pink purple pearl
  • Blackware – Creamy true black
Nail Lacquer: $12.00
  • Nocturnelle – True black
  • Seriously Hip – Black w/ gold particle pearl 
  • Baby Goth Girl – Black w/ pink and purple pearl
  • Volcanic Ash Exfoliator: $19.50
  • Volcanic Ash Thermal Mask: $19.50

Cream Colour Base: $16.50
  • Black – Creamy true black
  • Bat Black – Burgundy black with pink pearl (Pro)

Pink & Grey Look

My friend Kristin asked me to do a pink & grey look, so here we go!


  • Bobbie Brown Oil Free Even Finish Foundation SPF 15 in Almond (7)

  • MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in Dark

Eyes (I mainly used Coastal Scents Palette #78):
  • Lid - section 4, third pink down on the left
  • Crease - Section 4, dark grey above the blush and Section 6, dark, greyish black color
  • Brow bone - MAC eyeshadow in yogurt
  • Inside corner and below bottom lash line - MAC eyeshadow Seedy Pearl (frost)
  • Liner - Stila smudge pot in black
  • Mascara - Maybelline great lash
  • 5th blush in Costal Scents Palette #78
  • MAC lipstick in Lovin It
  • MAC lipglass in Mimmy (limited edition)

Saturday, October 3, 2009

The Softer Side of Me

Last week on facebook I updated my status voicing my concern about feeling insecure about a fashion show I have to do later this month, and the reactions I received were surprising. I had friends calling and trapping me in the corner at church completely baffled. "You...insecure??? What??? But that's not even YOU!". I laughed. I laughed a good, hearty laugh, but also a melancholy one.

Ever since I was a kid being raised by a quasi-single mother (I lived with my mother, but my father (who she was never married to, and isn't my birth father) helped raise me) taught me to be strong and not-so-much vulnerable without really meaning to. There were times when we struggled in our relationship where I had to depend on me. There was only me. I was an only child and I didn't have a sibling to lean on, so whenever I dealt with something, I dealt with it by myself. Over the years I have never really noticed that I still do this. What I have noticed is that my closest relationships are with the friends I made during my volunteer time at the DC Rape Crisis Center because, let's be honest, that was a pretty heart wrenching, emotionally thick place where everyone was vulnerable at one time or another. There was a bond of trust amongst us that isn't easily found in those you meet everyday. However, even they don't REALLY know me. Not the nitty gritty, bare bones of me. Mainly because I trained myself from the time I was a child to say "this too shall pass". Since I had to deal with things on my own, I've never really been comfortable with relying on others emotionally. I don't even know if I know how to. When I try, it feels very uncomfortable. I think a part of me would rather be completely alone and without friends than open and let them see some of those vulnerable sides of me.

Another reason I'm so cut off is because I've tried a time or two to open up to others, but because it didn't come when they desired for it to, or it wasn't packaged the way they wanted it to be, it wasn't received and once again I was that little girl with mommy issues that shut down emotionally. That just taught me that yeah, I should just keep things to myself, deal with my own issues. I thought I was ok with that, until I saw how it was affecting my friendships.

There are few friendships where I feel comfortable showing that there are times when I am vulnerable, there are times when I'm completely unsure of myself. I have no problem knowing that I am insecure at times. Overall my self esteem is incredibly healthy. However, I am human lol. I think it's so funny that some people think that even I can't feel insecure. I can. I honestly can. I just find it hard to let people in enough to see it. It doesn't mean that it doesn't happen though.

My hope for the rest of 2009 is to learn to open up to my friends more. I am not responsible for their reactions, and I cannot personalize it no matter how much it personally hurts, or disturbs me when they don't give back to me what I need in those moments. This, what I'm trying to do right now, is not about them. It's about me. I want to be able to say I am being the best wife, friend, daughter, cousin, etc. that I can be. My pastor told me a long time ago that it's not about what others do, it's about focusing on what I do. I hear her now. I hear her loud and clear.