An Un-awsm Lost Week


Yah, it’s like that. 

Between last Friday and today-Friday, I lost the week.  Too much to do, overwhelmed, and so my awsm writings came Unawsm-ly last.  Or to put a point on it, not at all.

Let’s see if I can nutshell my week…

As regards awsm clothes

I found a cute lil cotton-knit hi-lo dress by Mix&Co, in a geometric design of blue and teal, at Family Dollar store, for $12.50.  That’s been in heavy rotation this week, with a pair of sparkly flipflops from the local Dollar Tree.


sorry, my pix all seem washed-out… That turquoise-blue bra (its matching panties are still in the dryer, I think, lol) is also a Family Dollar find

And about those Dollar Tree flip-flops?  I got’em all.


I love the lil bit of sparkle, and since I have scads of them (not to mention the plain ones I already have, and other footwear), it’s not like I’ll be wearing any one pair enough to wear them out quickly.  And for $6, that’s a helluva a summer footwear bonanza!

My sister took me to her local thrifty, 2nd Avenue, and for under $25, I got a pile of things:

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A coupla sweet gauze tunics — the blue-and-green is from Old Navy, and the moss-green/tie-dye with the gem detailing is from Ashley Stewart — great with a chemise and capri’s, or over a swimsuit

IMG_20140523_031722  IMG_20140523_031541

A peacock-teal chemise with gold trim for just a lil summer glam, and a ruffle-necked brown knit sundress by Bass.  These plain-tan flip-flops will get some stick-on gems from Michaels Crafts, to spiff them up, and that’s just some gold nailpolish from 5below.

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This Lands End sundress is fantastic!  A beautiful, flattering fit and so comfy!  The color’s a dark steel-blue/navy, with cream flowers.  The length is just above the knee, just right, and the criss-cross V neck adjusts from demure at its most closed to pretty sassy when arranged a bit lower.  Versatility, I like it!


Lastly, this darling silver party-dress, with sequin detailing and spaghetti straps, still had its $56 Kohl’s tag attached!  Who knows when a girl will need a lil something special?

In addition, I got 2 cotton short-sleeved shirts, to pull over when my shoulders get chilled — one each in black and white.  The white has some nice tuxedo pintucks in the front.  If I can get some decent pix, I’ll share later.

food clock

awsm Nomz this week?  Umm, not so much.

I was everywhere this week — at Mom’s on Monday, in Philly on Tuesday, back out to the burbs to hang-out with friends on Wednesday, back to Philly again on Thursday, and today I am work-work-working on about a dozen projects, so I can RELAX for the Memorial Day weekend!

Highlights:  Steak Tartare — or more accurately “Cannibal Bites”!


I am a very big fan of raw meats

Mine did not look nearly this posh, and when I make a proper batch of Steak Tartare, I will post a picture.  My mom used to call it “Cannibal Bites” when I was a kid — we’d get a very good grade hamburger, and mix in milk, steak sauce, chopped onion, spices…  That and a lil rye-toast, and I’m good to go.  Ate this on Thursday around 11:30am, and did not need to eat again til today (Friday).  Rich, filling and delicious.

It was a burger-licious week, since on Sunday, My Guy and I also enjoyed “plain-old” burgers, topped with cheese and bacon bits, and served with a unique salad — mustard-greens gathered by Himself in a(n UN-pesticided) field near his workplace were the basis, and we added spinach, some cut-up cherry tomatoes, a lil shredded cheese and tossed it with Italian dressing.

photo 01 photo 3

We frequently just share our plate, cuz it’s cozy!

There weren’t any awsm Events this week to speak of, and all is quiet on the Relationships front…  so that brings us to today, and a little Random awsm-ness…

dogwood 1 dogwood 3

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dogwood cider dogwood bistro

Phoenixville PA’s annual Dogwood Festival is walking distance from My Guy’s place, so we took a leisurely stroll to take in the sights…  Beautiful turn of the century (1900’s, that is) architecture throughout the town, a fun little carnival acrawl with families and teenagers, and a stroll down to Bridge street for some delightful Black Cherry Hard Cider at Bistro on Bridge, made for a mellow evening — and that’s pretty awsm!

Let’s hope I don’t lose any more time, going forward!



No Time for Relationships: the Metal Version


Ugh, my life is in a whirl.  Not really any time to write about my Relationships today.

Work stuff to do (I’m a content manager for a calendar-type website, so I spend a lot of time researching, qualifying, inputting data)…  Then I have to drive an hour, pick up my younger son, and drive him another 45min to a first-meet with a possible Metal-Band co-member.  When that’s done, Mom’s Taxi will drive back home.  *whew*


My younger son is an outstanding Metal drummer — he’s got mad natural skillz, and learning more all the time.  When we bought the RockBand game set some 5 years ago, we had no idea we’d be releasing this innate talent.  He started playing the included fake “guitar,” which is not at all analogous to real guitar-playing, and tired of that pretty quickly.  But the drumming, ahhh...

In short order, his natural skillset drove him through the basics, through performing every included piece at the fastest, most aggressive settings.  We scavenged for every version of the game to feed his talent.  He practiced nonstop (we had to establish that drumming at 10-11pm, which is a totally normal Teen-Kid Time, does not work for the employed, old-ass, needing-to-sleep adults of the household…)  And the next year, we bought a modest but fully legit drum kit.  It’s been uphill from there.

i love metal ransom note

umm, not so much, really — but oh boy, my son does.  And he’s GOOD at it!  This kid can drum like madness.  We were talking about trying to get him connected with other metal-heads to give him a chance to jam, maybe do some gigs, to work on and hone his craft.  I found the guy he’s meeting with today via Craigslist — another young man of about my son’s age, who’s a guitarist.  This kid’s got A Plan.  He wants to rehearse and record this summer. Me, I’m 400% behind that!

So, no time for Relationships today — other than my relationship with my talented Metal-Drummer son, who I’m now gonna go drive all over creation for, in order to support him and give him opportunities.

Rock on, yall!

love metal flair

Tuesday is NomzDay! Defaulting to Bacon


I had originally thought to do my writings about Relationships on Tuesdays, with awsm Noms on Wednesdays, but as it turns out, switching them just works better for me.

And today being another ridiculously busy day, I am defaulting to Bacon.

These are Bacon Things I like:

bacon shrimp

Bacon Shrimp: roll the shrimp in cajun spice and wrap in bacon, cook for 20min at 350


Bacon Scallops: See Bacon Shrimp (toss with garlic butter instead of cajun, if you prefer). Make sure you sear in a pan when done baking, so that they get nice and golden (plus the caramelization tastes amazing)


Brussels Sprouts with Onion and Bacon: Cut the sprouts in half, toss with olive oil nd minced garlic, place facedown on foil-lined cookie sheet.  Chunk-up an onion or 2, toss with olive oil and oregano, scatter amongst sprouts. Top with bacon that’s been cut into 1-2″ pieces.  Cook at 350-400 til the bacon’s starting to crisp, 30-40min. Serve with just a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.

bacon chicken

A couple of weeks ago, I made a Bacon-Wrapped Chicken.  With bacon stuffing.  I stuffed a mix of rosemary and sage under the skin pre-wrapping (note the festive basket weave!)  It was incredibly succulent and flavorful — much better than my photo makes it look!

A version of this receipe was recently featured in the Food Network's Magazine, Bacon issue!

A version of this receipe was recently featured in the Food Network’s Magazine, Bacon issue!

 The Bacon Apple Galette from last week’s Blog!!  So good, I had to feature it twice.


Okay, this is just deranged, yall. 

Bacon Pineapple Upside Down Cake: Set pineapple rings on paper towel to dry a little bit (save the juice in the can!).  Generously butter a cakepan.  Melt 2-4 Tbl butter and add as much brown sugar as will still stay slightly liquid, maybe a cup or so.  This is basically 2-3times as much as any recipe will tell you to do. Spread that in the pan. Top with the pineapple rings, and fill the rings and spaces between with crumbled bacon.  Mix a box of cake-mix, replacing the water with pineapple juice and adding another 1-2 tsp oil.  Into the pan that goes, set it on a cookie sheet with foil — cuz it’s gonna bubble over and drip, and bake at 350 (or per box instructions), for 30-40min.  Check for doneness, because the juice of the pineapples may make it take longer.  Remove from oven, cook, and turn out onto a serving dish — all that brown sugar should be a thick caramelly coating!

bacon chocolate

Bacon with Chocolate.   Just.  Do.  It.  I prefer a darker chocolate to offset the sweetness of the bacon.  Dip it, drizzle it, dunk it, just…  do… it.

bacon-statsbacon heart







awsm-ly Curvy, Casual and Colorful for Spring!

Today’s blog is gonna be quick-n-dirty, as it’s an especially hectic day, but I wanted to share some pix that show my awsm Curvy Fashion sense!

I am so delighted that Springtime is here, as I have some colorful transitional-season/warm weather outfits that make me feel happy and bright!

You’ll recall that last week, I posted about a visit to dine at Fogo de Chao — My Fogo de Chao Blog, Thurs 5/8/14 — and here’s the outfit I wore:

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This is a great, comfy and colorful Springtime ensemble: I found this lightweight Mossimo size L/G dress for <$10 on the clearance rack at Target last spring.  It features a ruffled bodice with a nice V in the back, a natural elasticized waist that flatters my hourglass shape (just one narrow band, so I can wear it plain, as I did here, or accessorize it with narrow or wide belts), and a slightly flared skirt that ends about 2-3″ above the knee — though this means I have to be mindful of how I sit (gracefully, ladies, always gracefully), I love a flirty shorter skirt to show off my legs!  I snipped a few stitches at the center-front neckline to create more of a V-neck, since that’s a look that works very well for me.  It’s sleeveless (but, importantly, the straps cover my necessary underthings, which is an important detail to me) so I can wear it throughout the year, alone or with several different cardigans, jackets, wraps, as well as scarves, different belts, etc for multiple looks, which is the kind of versatility I demand!


In this case, my lingerie was a coordinated set in purple, with a black lace over satin bra and a black-lace-trimmed satin panty, both from Walmart’s Smart&Sexy line.

__Photo In The Works

Photo In The Works!

Because I was going to be walking in Center City, I skipped my sassy purple stiletto’s and opted for these cute purple booties that I got from my sister at Christmas (a consignment store find at <$20).


The purple handbag came from either the Salvy or 2nd Avenue, at about $5 — it’s supercute, but frustrating in that it lacks any pockets for organizing.  I end-up using Ziploc bags: one for my travelling cosmetics, another for ID and wallet, etc.


For final details, My jewelry consisted of a colorful bead-and-gold chain necklace paired with earrings in antiqued gold and rainbow crystals, along with a fun purple nail-polish from 5Below.  The denim jacket is an old wardrobe staple, funky for in-Town visits and accessorized with a bright multicolor scarf in the pocket.

In this ensemble, I felt pretty, sexy and ready for Spring as I stepped-out with my guy!

One more look for today:  a Casual Curvy look


Here I am, ready for a day of errands and just hanging-out at-home, in an outfit that re-uses many of the accessories from my ensemble above.  I’ve re-used the necklace, earrings, and handbag, as well as the handwashed and air-dryed lingerie set.  Because I am constantly on the move, spending a few nights here and a few nights there in the course of every week, when I gather my garments I try to make sure that each item is part of a coordinated group of ensembles that present mixed-and-matched items in new styles, so as to get the maximum use out of the minimum number of items packed.

What’s new here are some of my fave capri’s, which are black-denim “jeggings” by Mix&Co/size 3x from the Family Dollar Store, about $8 last Spring, if I remember correctly.  They are super-comfy, a lightweight cotton blend with plenty of stretch.  I could wear their 2x, but I like the easy fit of the larger size.

The top is a marvellous gauze tunic top, size 22-24, from Lane Bryant, that I borrowed from my sister, who found it at 2nd Avenue a few weeks ago for $7.  The bodice has sequin and metallic thread accents, and great little round buttons.  This top is so fun and breezy-comfy on a spring day that might start in the 50s, go up to the high 70s and then back down again in temps.

And omigosh, my shoes: I adore these cloth MaryJane-style knockabouts that were around $5 from Family Dollar Store so much, I bought 2 pairs.  They are soooo comfy and cute!

Yay for Sunny Spring Colors!



This week’s awsm Stuff! Fri-5/9/14

the awsm Mister Rogers!!!

Caught a documentary about Mister Rogers this week — “Mister Rogers and Me”

and it just makes me think, as ever, how amazing this man was.  A modern-day Saint.  It’s always a beautiful day in the neighborhood.



awsm Sounds ~

I listen to a fair amount of Ambient Sounds, Classical Music, and — occasionally — the Standards (tho in the car, it’s usually Top Pop).  So a couple of the awsm sounds I’ve bookmarked…

Since I no longer have a place “downashore,” this way I can get my fix of seaside sounds


Heard a Tibetan Bowls performance by Axexandre Tannous at the recent PSYmposium, and have been tapping into this as going-to-sleep sounds

frank sinatra

AccuRadio’s “Swinging Pop Standards” — I’m a fan of Frank, Dean, Doris, Nat, Mikey Bubbles et al…


AccuRadio’s “Top 100 Classical pieces,” the Pops of the Classical genre



Tonight We Dine at FOGO!

A highlight event of this week happens tonight — That Guy I Hang Out With and I are going down into Philly for dinner at Fogo de Chao Brazilian Steakhouse.  I haven’t eaten anything since a slice of toast with marmalade, around 8:30am, and I’m sipping on freshly-made Raspberry Lemonade Iced tea, to make sure that I am HUNGRY come dinnertime at 7:30pm.

Himself is a BIG fan of Fogo, and this is only the second time I’ve gone.  The last time we went, led to us going this time, via receiving a very nice perk when dining there for Valentine’s Day!


As we finished our (yes, of COURSE amazing) dinner, our server gave us a red Gift Card, for a complimentary meal for Valentine’s guests!  That is one of the best incentives I’ve ever seen: not only did we have a GREAT meal, but we received this great freebie to boot — of COURSE we were going to return!

Between one thing and another, it’s been til now for us to be able to get into Town and use it, but we are excited!

fogo madness

Tonight we dine at FOGO! …………This is MADNESS! ……………. I can’t believe it’s not MADNESS! Texting, Leonidas-style


I’ll follow-up later, post-dinner!  For now, off we go!



Found Outside: Fiddlehead Ferns, Wild Onions, and Apple-Bacon Galette

I can see I’m going to have to become one of those people who photographs my food!  That really would be the best accompaniment to this weekly page, and give me points of reference to recount whatever awsm Nomz I’ve had.

mmm, food pr0n...

mmm, food pr0n…

However, for this week, we’re just gonna hafta wing it.  New Blogger Blues, bear with me.  My inspirations this week came mostly from Nature and The Great Outdoors, as a jaunt to a natural area and a bit of leftover fruit found their way into my menu’s.

All of these recipes are KETO (ketogenic diet) – friendly!

Natural Noms by The Susquehanna Lock: Finding Fiddleheads:

Last Saturday, the Guy and I spent a glorious Spring day on a drive thru PA Dutch country (horse-drawn carts!) to the Susquehanna River Dam and Lock by Rt372.  We explored along the water’s edge upriver of the Dam and then wandered up into the woods beside a creek to some waterfalls.

Along that path, I spied Continue reading