Smell of Summer

Summers on Long Island were different in every area. But nothing beats the smell of sun kissed beach skin and ocean hair. Growing up on Long Island with the Atlantic Ocean to the south and the sound to the north so you had an option where you could go. Most people who had boats used the harbors on the sound unless they were docked in places like the nautical mile in Freeport. The summer air always made people happier especially after a harsh winter where it seemed like it never stopped snowing.

Maryanne grew up on the north shore of long island.  As the youngest of five children and being the only girl out of a band of brothers some may say she was a princess. She thought of herself as lucky.  Her brothers were not only her protectors when she got bullied in grade school but her best friends. Plus to her benefit that she got the luxury of dating her brothers’ friends.

During the summers her parents were able to get a week or two off to take them out to the Hamptons or on trips to tropical islands. Most of the time they did not mind if they got one or two weeks with one parent and then the next week or so with the other parent. That happened when their schedules could not allow them to take matching summer vacations.

Her oldest brother, Calvin, was eight years older than her was a Marine Corp Jag who was stationed in Washington D.C.  The two middle brothers were Randy and Derek, whom everyone called the twins even though they were a year apart. Randy was five years older than Maryanne and Derek was  four but sometimes they acted like children. Both Randy and Derek where surgeon, like their mother especially with where they worked, but Randy was pediatric and Derek was cosmetic.

Steven, who was just a years older than her, had just gotten back from serving over in Iraq. He had surprised her at her college graduation from the University of Florida. She had no idea that he was coming home and she had not seen him in person for almost eighteen months. Maryanne and her brothers were very closes even though there were age gaps between them.

Since Maryanne had just graduated with a bachelors in both history and business finance from University of Florida she had no idea what she wanted to do. She had gotten a decent score on her LSAT and got into all her top choices for law school.  She felt like there was something missing from her life but she didn’t know what it was. She wanted adventure and fun in her life and not being kept locked up in a house or office all day. Her mother kept telling her you just graduated college fun time is over, but how could one be happy if there wasn’t a little fun and adventure in their life. Since there is only a couple of months between graduation and Maryanne starting her  J.D. in International at St. John’s University in the fall while working at one of the most prestigious law firms as a junior financial adviser Maryanne decides to plan out adventures she could take.

There were so many options for adventures for her that summer. Maryanne wanted to travel, go to concerts, do several mud run obstacle course races, go to the beach and so much more. One of the reasons why she wanted to travel was because most of her friends from college lived all over the country and some lived in Europe. Her best friend Maci suggested a group trip to somewhere exotic or to Tomorrowland at the end of July.

Maci Nolan was originally from Auburn Alabama but moved to the house across the street from Maryanne right before high school. She got picked on and teased a lot because of the way she talked and acted. The only one who didn’t was Maryanne. They got super close because of that reason. Maci had studied nursing while they were at college and spent a ton of time studying for her boards on Sundays during the spring semester before graduation and when she took them the weekend after graduation she was fully prepared for them.

It was the middle of June, Maci had just passed her nursing boards and Maryanne was working 50 hour weeks. They were together every weekend so they could relax and try to figure out what they wanted to do. Planning adventures with out the rest of their group from college was a task because they were so use to having them right there in front of them but Skype chatting was kind of difficult with time differences.  Their friends Melissa and Grace lived overseas in Greece and France but were coming back to the United States for Law School and Medical School.

(see smell of summer pt. 2)

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Healthy Recipes found on Instagram

Since switching from Blackberry to iPhone last summer I’ve been kind of addicted to Instagram. Lately I have been finding these awesome recipes on there. I have found more since the last post mentioning recipes on instagram.

Taco-Guacamole 

By: @SammyBFit 

  • Guacamole:
  • 1 large mission avocado
  • 1/3 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/2 bell pepper, chopped (1/2 cup chopped)
  • 1 roma tomato, chopped
  • 1 tbsp. fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. minced garlic, 1 clove, chopped
  • 1/2 lime, juiced
  • Salt & pepper, to taste

Taco Meat:

  • 1/4 cup Boca Veggie Ground Crumbles, or ground turkey/chicken
  • 1/2 tbsp. olive oil
  • Pinch of onion powder
  • Pinch of garlic powder
  • Pinch of ground cumin
  • Pinch of chili powder
  • Salt & pepper, to taste 

Garnishments:

  • 2 tbsp. 0% plain greek yogurt, divided
  • 1 tbsp. shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • Chips, of choice, for dipping

Directions:

Place the 1/2 tbsp. of olive oil in a pan over medium-heat. Once heated, place the Boca Veggie Ground Cumbles into the pan and allow to warm. Season with the onion powder, garlic powder, ground cumin, and chili powder. Add salt & pepper, to taste. I did not measure the seasonings, but added a dash of each. Stir well, allow to cook 2-3 minutes and remove from heat. . While the crumbles are cooking, chop the onion, bell pepper, tomato, cilantro, and garlic. Slice the large mission avocado in half, remove the pit and discard the pit. Scoop out the back half of each avocado half and place into a bowl. Mash the avocado with a fork very well. Once mashed, fold in the chopped vegetables. Squeeze the juice of half a lime over the mixture and stir well. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. . Divide the guacamole between the two avocado halves and fill each empty end. Top with the Boca Crumbles, cheese, greek yogurt, and tomatoes. Serve with tortilla chips of choice and dip away!

 

One of my friends is a vegetarian not a full fledged vegan but when i showed her this she tried it and loved it.

Vegan Tacos

By @Rawstruckvegan

Ingredients

  • Pinto Beans (beans of choice) 29 oz can of organic pinto beans (rinsed)
  • 1 small bulb of roasted garlic
  • 2 tbsp organic chilli seasoning
  • salt to taste

Directions:

Blend roasted garlic, chilli seasoning, and salt in the blender. Warm up pinto beans in a pan with 2-3 tbsp of water. While beans are warming, stir in garlic/chili mixture.

Raw Salsa:

  • 1 small zucchini
  • 1 cup soaked sun dried tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup red pepper
  • 1 small Thai chilli pepper (very hot!)
  • 1/4 cup basil
  • 2″ piece of leek
  • salt to taste

Directions:

Process in food processor until ingredients have a medium grind (not too fine).

Nut Cheese:

all nuts were soaked for about 4 hours before use.

  • 1/2 cup cashews
  • 1/4 cup Brazil nuts
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1″ piece of leek
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/8 cup filtered water

Directions:

Process in food processor until creamy. Warm 8 brown rice tortillas in the oven. Once they are soft, remove from the oven and lay flat on a plate. Lay a bed of organic arugula on half of the tortilla. Spoon on warm pinto beans. Add a few teaspoons of spicy salsa and top the salsa with the nut cheese. Add slices of fresh avocado on top. Makes 8 soft tacos Enjoy!

 

Creamy Avocado Pasta

by @livegreenhealthy

Ingredients

  • 1 avocado
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • Pinch of salt
  • Crushed red pepper

Directions:

Blend all ingredients together. Adjust amounts of basil, lemon juice and salt to taste! Toss with pasta or zucchini noodles! Serves 2.

 

I am going to attempt this recipes over the course of the week. I will post with pictures if i accomplish them, especially if they are tasty.

At Risk of Heart Disease at 24

So I got my blood work results back the other day and it said that I have abnormally high cholesterol levels and am at risk of heart disease. Great if I don’t fix this now I will be put on cholesterol medications and I am not even 25 yet. I found some recipes that may help me out.
Recipes From Allrecipes.com
Chicken Fiesta Salad
Ingredients
  • 2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 1 (1.27 ounce) packet dry fajita seasoning, divided
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (11 ounce) can Mexican-style corn
  • 1/2 cup salsa
  • 1 (10 ounce) package mixed salad greens
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tomato, cut into wedges
Directions
  1. Rub chicken evenly with 1/2 the fajita seasoning. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat, and cook the chicken 8 minutes on each side, or until juices run clear; set aside.
  2. In a large saucepan, mix beans, corn, salsa and other 1/2 of fajita seasoning. Heat over medium heat until warm.
  3. Prepare the salad by tossing the greens, onion and tomato. Top salad with chicken and dress with the bean and corn mixture.
 
Fabulous Fajitas
Ingredients
  • 2 green bell peppers, sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup fresh sliced mushrooms
  • 2 cups diced, cooked chicken meat
  • 1 (.7 ounce) package dry Italian-style salad dressing mix
Directions
  1. Cut peppers and onion into thin slices. Do not dice, leave slices long and thin.
  2. Saute peppers and onion in a small amount of oil until tender. Add mushrooms and chicken. Continue to cook on low heat until heated through. Stir in dry salad dressing mix and blend thoroughly.
  3. Warm tortillas and roll mixture inside. If desired top with shredded cheddar cheese, diced tomato and shredded lettuce.
 
Basic Chinese Stir Fry Vegetables
Ingredients

  • 2 cups uncooked brown rice
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon safflower oil
  • 1/3 cup leeks, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger root
  • 1 cup zucchini, chopped
  • 1 cup carrots, chopped
  • 1 cup yellow squash, chopped
  • sea salt to taste

Directions

  1. Bring the brown rice and water to a boil in a saucepan over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the rice is tender, and the liquid has been absorbed, 45 to 50 minutes.
  2. Heat the safflower oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in the leeks, garlic, and ginger; cook and stir until the leeks have softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the zucchini, carrots, and yellow squash. Season with salt. Continue cooking and stirring until the vegetables have softened, about 2 minutes. Serve over brown rice.

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

Ingredients

  • 1 (2 pound) pork tenderloin
  • 1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle root beer
  • 1 (18 ounce) bottle your favorite barbecue sauce
  • 8 hamburger buns, split and lightly toasted

Directions

Place the pork tenderloin in a slow cooker; pour the root beer over the meat. Cover and cook on low until well cooked and the pork shreds easily, 6 to 7 hours. Note: the actual length of time may vary according to individual slow cooker. Drain well. Stir in barbecue sauce. Serve over hamburger buns.
 
Black Beans and Rice
Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup uncooked white rice
  • 1 1/2 cups low sodium, low fat vegetable broth 
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin 
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 1/2 cups canned black beans, drained

Directions

  1. In a stockpot over medium-high heat, heat the oil. Add the onion and garlic and saute for 4 minutes. Add the rice and saute for 2 minutes.
  2. Add the vegetable broth, bring to a boil, cover and lower the heat and cook for 20 minutes. Add the spices and black beans.
Garlic Chicken with Orzo Noodles
Ingredients

  • 1 cup uncooked orzo pasta
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves – cut into bite-size pieces
  • salt to taste
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 cups fresh spinach leaves
  • grated Parmesan cheese for topping

Directions

  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add orzo pasta, cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until al dente, and drain.
  2. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat, and cook the garlic and red pepper 1 minute, until garlic is golden brown. Stir in chicken, season with salt, and cook 2 to 5 minutes, until lightly browned and juices run clear. Reduce heat to medium, and mix in the parsley and cooked orzo. Place spinach in the skillet. Continue cooking 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until spinach is wilted. Serve topped with Parmesan cheese.

 Peppered Bacon and Tomato Linguine

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound peppered bacon, diced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped green onion
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 (16 ounce) package linguine pasta
  • 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

  1. Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain, reserving drippings, and set aside.
  2. Saute green onion and garlic in bacon drippings over medium heat for one minute. Stir in tomatoes, basil, salt and ground black pepper; simmer for 5 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain.
  4. Toss hot pasta with sauce and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Attractive Friends

So apparently I’ve been gathering a roster of hot friends for years. Do not know how or why I have been doing this. And this people that I just chill with to because apparently I only make friends with people with the same personality or similar enough to mine.

Weird enough all the hot attractive guys I make friends with have said stuff like “we are so similar” “we have the same personality” “you’d have fun there you like the same stuff I do”. Yeah I know I like the same stuff you do. I love sports more than shopping. Any comic book movie like Spiderman, ironman avengers I will see opening weekend. I grew up partying so drinking comes easy. Oh and they tend to forget I have three brothers. Women who grow up with more than 1 brother tend to be a lot more easy going than other plus we are easier to talk to.

For example, yesterday, after I had lunch with my best friend I went out to Shirley New York. It’s a 50 min drive from where I live. I hung out with my friend Logan who is one of my hotter friends. The fact i told him he had to have the USA Belgium game on because kick off was about the time I was getting to his house. World Cup is the only time I will yell at the television more than any other sports season. He was shocked about how into it I was getting. Afterwards we were talking about life in general and that is when I got “you like a lot of the same stuff I do,” from him. Sometimes I feel like guys around my age need to expand their phrasebook because they have these brains that they don’t use to the full capacity. Makes me laugh and think that it is like I could be very manipulative when they start saying the same thing over again.