This past weekend MN gave us a nice preview to Spring with some unseasonably warm weather. The taste of Spring got me thinking about what I want to get done in March and I’m hoping by putting it out here for all of you to read, and also storing it in a place I can go back to, that I’ll get at least a few of my goals accomplished.
- Relax – John and I have been very busy this year with work and travel. Luckily we have a week vacation coming up for just the two of us to escape to California. My goal is to unplug, soak in the sun, and restart my engine before diving in to some more big work projects when we get back mid-month.
- GSD – once back from vacation it’s time to really hunker down and GSD at work. My goal here is to keep my head down and plow through everything I need to get done so that at the end of each day I can walk away knowing I did everything I could and leaving work at work until the next day.
- Read – with some time away I’m hoping to get a book or two read for fun and then start making it through a book my boss got for everyone on our team to read. I’m looking forward to having “homework” because I haven’t used a highlighter and pen in a book since college.
- Boomer Walks – poor old Boomer has been going crazy this winter, and really since we moved in to our house a few years ago. The problem with a house with a fenced in backyard is that when he has to go to the bathroom I just let him outside instead of bringing him on walks or to the dog park like we used to do. My goal for March is to get out on walks at least 5 days a week. Not only is this good for Boomer, but LJ really enjoys these walks because he gets to eat Pirate’s Booty and mom gets a little workout in too.
What are your March plans?
I thoroughly enjoy pizza, I don’t consider it love, because I know some people who love pizza and I don’t think I’m quite that obsessed. However, this will be my second time sharing a pizza recipe so I must have a little bit of love for it. The first recipe I shared is much more involved and takes a lot of time since the dough and sauce are made from scratch, I consider that recipe a great “weekend pizza”. The recipe below is my “weeknight pizza” because it doesn’t take too much time to put together or bake.
- 1/2 Trader Joe’s Pizza Dough (I like the regular, but there is also a whole wheat or garlic/herb)
- Corn Meal
- Garlic Olive Oil
- Sea Salt
- Pasta Sauce
- Thinly Sliced Fresh Mozzarella (I prefer a log that isn’t pre-cut because the slices are usually too thick when it’s pre-cut. Dry off the cheese with a paper towel and slice it with a serrated knife. You can even stick it in the freezer for a few minutes prior to slicing to make it even easier.)
- Prosciutto (for topping after it’s baked)
- Balsamic Glaze (for dipping)
HOW TO MAKE IT
- Take dough out of refrigerator ~20 minutes early to make it easier to roll.
- Preheat oven with a pizza stone in it to 450 degrees Fahrenheit
- Roll out the pizza dough on a lightly floured surface – toss it in the air if you are feeling fancy
- Lightly sprinkle corn meal on a cutting board and then place the rolled pizza dough on top of the corn meal. Make sure that the pizza dough easy slides around so you can make sure that it will easily slide into the oven after you’ve topped it. Note: the heavier the pizza, the more corn meal you’ll need. i.e. if you add more than just sauce and cheese you’ll want more corn meal.
- Drizzle ~1 tablespoon of garlic olive oil on the dough and spread it around to cover the entire surface
- Sprinkle salt on top of the dough and olive oil (this is not needed, but I love my pizza salty)
- Spread 1-2 spoonfuls of pasta sauce on the dough (I like to use a sauce that isn’t super chunky because I’m not a fan of tomato chunks in my pizza)
- Top your pizza with the thinly sliced fresh mozzarella and then sprinkle some more salt on top
- Check to make sure that your pizza is able to slide around on the cutting board before trying to place it in the oven. If necessary, carefully pick up the sides of the pizza that aren’t sliding and sprinkle in some more corn meal.
- Slide your pizza into the oven and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until it looks delicious!
- Cut, top with prosciutto, dip in balsamic glaze, and enjoy!
Are you salivating yet? Do any of you have an easy and delicious “weeknight” recipe that’s your go-to?
I have to begin by giving a special shout out to Erin over at Everything with Love for inspiring me with her thoughtful posts and giving me some tools to get me back to blogging. Now, let’s just hope these tools and my current inspiration stay with me so I don’t go on another 5 month hiatus.
Today I want to provide you with an update to what’s been going on in my life. This isn’t going to cover the last 5 months, but it’ll give you a little taste of what I’ve been up to in 2016.
LJ’s New Room
No, LJ hasn’t been kicked out of his bedroom at home, he has just moved up to a new room at school. At the end of 2015/beginning of 2016 LJ started his 2 week transition out of the toddler room and in to the preschool room at school. His new class has kids from 33 months – 5 years! I love the idea that he is in a class with a larger age range. By being with older kids he is able to really work on his vocabulary and watch how the older kids socialize. When I was in elementary school I was lucky enough to be in the MAG (Multi Age Group) class in 2nd grade (combined 1st and 2nd grade) and 4th-6th grade (combined 4th-6th grade). Being educated in a classroom with multiple age groups not only challenges the younger children to work with the older children who are more advanced, but it also helps the older children show compassion for the younger children and promotes mentorship. I am excited to continue to watch LJ grow in this new room (and hopefully get potty trained quickly).
Working it Out
I’ve talked about my struggle with sticking with a fitness routine in the past and like most people I’ve gone through the ebb and flow of working out. Starting in November I tried out a new fitness routine called Fitness Blender. Up until two weeks ago I was consistently working out 4-6 days a week using the Fitness Blender routines. I just purchased a new 4 week plan and will be jumping back on the fitness train today. Look for a post on what has helped me successfully stick with a fitness routine soon.
The Wheels on the Bus
Have I talked about how much I love public transportation?!? I live in a suburb of Minneapolis, but work downtown, so I drive 2 miles to a transit station and take a bus to work each day (note: I’m lucky enough to get to work from home 2 days/week, so I’m only taking the bus 3 times a week). What’s so great about a bus you may ask? ME TIME! I get 20-30 minutes each morning and each afternoon to have quiet time to myself. This time is my warm up and cool down each day. I find that the days I work from home I’m not quite as happy at work or after work because I haven’t had time to slowly wake up and take time to myself, which is usually spent reading on my Kindle that my in-laws got me for Christmas (great gift).
As soon as the hype of Christmas and my birthday, in mid-January, died down I’ve been left with the mid-Winter blues. Around mid-January through March of each year I start to get the itch to get away. The past two years I have been lucky enough to get away to Mexico, but this year with the Zika virus the Caribbean is off the plate and I’ve been left itching to go somewhere warm. After a lot of false starts planning we have finally booked some time away in CA and will be jetting off in a couple of weeks. To say that I’m excited is an understatement. Just 9 work days left until I’ll be on an airplane to somewhere warm.
If you’ve made it this far a big high-five to you! I’d love to hear from you in the comments below about what you’ve been up to lately. Any Spring Break plans for you?
Until later this week, stay warm and cheers to making it through the rest of the work week!