Posted by Kate O. on Jun 29, 2012 in photo friday | 0 comments
This week’s Instagram, photo a day challenge:
June 23rd – Day 175
Day 23 – Movement
Saturday I made the world’s best Peanut Butter icing…hold your horses, the recipe will be up on the blog next week!
June 24th - Day 176
Day 24 – on your mind
Duh, it would have to be my sis, Beth, it was her Birthday!
Posted by Kate O. on Jun 28, 2012 in dallas, restaurant | 0 comments
Dish Restaurant & Lounge was a new restaurant to me, but I believe it opened in Dallas in 2011. This place is fun! I was there for a bridal shower brunch that happened to be on the Sunday that they were doing the Drag Brunch and the place was packed! I have no idea if it is this busy on regular brunch weekends or not.
When Dish Restaurant & Lounge does Drag Brunch they have a special, limited brunch menu that is $25 for food only and $35 for bottomless mimosas or bloody marys. From what I can see on their online menu, the items themselves are special, just a limited selection.
Our waitress was so on top of things, no one had to sit long without a mimosa or bloody mary and we even got to start out with some powdery pastry treats as the first course.
The pastry basket was a nice mixture of flaky scones and muffins with a variety of flavors. Though eating those scones was much like eating a beignet, be sure to mind the powdered sugar!
She gave us plenty of time to look over the menu and the choices were so great we all had to work out our orders so that we could share and try everything.
As usual most of the items on the menu involved eggs and since I am allergic…there went those options. A couple people decide to get the chicken and waffles so I opted for the Herb Grilled Chicken Club.
It was good. I really enjoyed everything about this sandwich and the fries were nice and cripsy!
Although if I could have eggs I would have gone with the Dish Skillet. The whole thing just sounded awesome. I believe that’s what my friend Laura got, and I totally forgot to ask her how it was, but it looked as good as I thought it would be. Plus it came with breakfast potatoes, which is a definite plus.
There were at least 2 people at my table that ordered the Chicken and Waffles. I seriously wanted to try this so I was glad that I got to thanks to my sis ordering it. But to be honest I was glad I went with the chicken sandwich. Dish Restaurant & Lounge’s Chicken and Waffles was not the best I’ve ever had. It wasn’t bad, just not awesome like I had expected.
Another item ordered at my table that I couldn’t try was the Shortrib Benedict. I mean, buttermilk biscuits, gravy and short ribs… how could that be bad? However since egg was involved I didn’t try a bite. I did here these were good, again not amazing but good.
The mimosas and bloody marys never stopped and the entertainment kept us all cracking up! I had never been to a drag show before so I had absolutely no idea what to expect. But seriously, HILARIOUS! There was a Dolly Parton impersonation as well as an appearance from Candis Cayne.
After we finished our meal we still had dessert coming. There were three options I went with the Lemon Bar and Champagne Sorbet…champagne!! Yes, you read that correctly. The dessert was delicious but I was so full I couldn’t eat it all.
Over all, I enjoyed my food at Dish Restaurant & Lounge but the atmosphere was what I enjoyed most! Even if there hadn’t been the entertaining Drag Show going on during brunch the staff was awesome, super friendly and always on top of things. I would definitely head back to Dish Restaurant & Lounge with or without the Drag Show. And according to their website, they have some great Happy Hour specials!
We have officially hit 100 degree weather here in Dallas which means it is white wine season! So, if you’re looking for a nice white wine, I suggest the Clos Du Bois Sauvignon Blanc. A few weeks back I bought several Sauvignon Blancs at my local grocery store to try and this was easily my favorite of all the bottles.
To me this Sauvignon Blanc has a really nice, crisp, citrus taste that was very enjoyable. So enjoyable in fact, I picked up another bottle of this wine last night. It is regularly about $10 but I got it for $9. Not a bad price for a wine that is nice.
I don’t normally drink Clos Du Bois, not for any particular reason other than I just never think to buy it. But the grocery store has a really small selection of Sauvignon Blancs so I was determined to find one I liked since I’m there all the time.
This wine could really go with any thing, but would be a really great compliment to any summery type dish: salad, seafood or pasta. Especially something like the gnocchi and roasted cauliflower recipe I posted yesterday!
The Clos Du Bois website, just might be one of my favorite winery websites that I’ve come across. It’s fresh and inviting a lot like this bottle of Sauvignon Blanc; I just might have to give some of their other wines a try.
All this wine talk is making me ready for a glass, is it 5:00 yet?
Posted by Kate O. on Jun 26, 2012 in recipes | 0 comments
Back in January, you might remember I posted a roasted cauliflower recipe from my friend Kandice. I was amazed how great it tasted and fell in love with it! So, when I came across this Gnocchi with Roasted Cauliflower recipe from Real Simple I had to try it!
Ingredients from Real Simple:
1 head of cauliflower
12 sage leaves
3 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
I pound gnocchi (fresh or frozen)
1/4 C grated Parmesan
I know there is spinach in that picture…I was going to be all adventurous and add in spinach, make it Gnocchi with Roasted Cauliflower and Spinach. So I decided to saute it in EVOO and some garlic…but it didn’t really go as planned. I probably should have roasted it like I did the cauliflower. So pretend the spinach is not there!
First I broke the cauliflower into small pieces. I don’t really think there is a good way to start. So I typically just cut the head of cauliflower in half and then start breaking it a apart. As I broke it I dropped it in a bowl, then added the sage leaves and pepper; I omitted the kosher salt because I knew it didn’t need it. But if you’re a salt person, go for it. Next I drizzled the olive oil on it and mixed it all up. For roasting the cauliflower you’ll want a deep pan not a cookie sheet. I line it with foil and the spread the cauliflower out in the pan.
Posted by Kate O. on Jun 25, 2012 in Creative Chaos | 1 comment
As an independent author I am grateful when others share their experiences whether they are successes or failures; for that reason I wanted to share why I decided to give KDP Select (Kindle Select Publishing) a try last week. I find that most people’s thoughts on KDP Select really varies so I wasn’t 100% sure what to expect.
Creative Chaos has only been out for about 4 months, but I was noticing that the sales weren’t really going anywhere. My friends and family have been so encouraging and supportive but I really didn’t want to wear them out “pushing” my book whenever I could. Though you’d be surprised that despite how many times I tweeted or posted on Facebook about Creative Chaos that many of my friends and family still had no idea that I’d written a book.
Last week I decided to try and find out how other indie authors had had success selling their books on Amazon and came across this great post from author David Kazzie about KDP Select. After reading about his experience I thought I’d give it a try with Creative Chaos.
In order to be able to take part in the KDP Select program I had to remove Creative Chaos from all other online stores. This means if any of you Nook readers were thinking about downloading it but had not yet, you’ll have to wait until September. Following Kazzie’s suggestion, I notified several sites that my book would be free a few days before the promotion got started.
Posted by Kate O. on Jun 25, 2012 in books, fiction | 0 comments
Providence by Jamie McGuire is the book that derailed me from my Summer Reading List. But I didn’t mind! A friend of mine bought this book on her Kindle and shared it with me.
Providence by Jamie McGuire is the first book in a trilogy about Nina and Jared.
Nina is a student a Brown University who was also raised in Providence. At the opening of the book Nina’s father dies and her life begins to unravel in ways she could have never imagined after she meets Jared.
The story line was quite interesting to me. In fact it made me stop and think that this is what writing is about; using your imagination and seeing where it will lead you.
In Providence Jamie McGuire does include some romance but this is definitely not a chicklit. At first I was thinking it was a mystery, but I’m not sure it can really be classified that way either.
Posted by Kate O. on Jun 22, 2012 in photo friday | 0 comments
This week’s Instagram, photo a day challenge:
June 16th – Day 168
Day 16 – Out and About
Cracked me up that my Weather Channel app said there wasn’t rain in our area yet, it was pouring!
June 17th - Day 169
Day 17 – In Your Bag
The groceries I need to make this week’s meals.
Posted by Kate O. on Jun 21, 2012 in Creative Chaos | 4 comments
Now that it is officially summer, for 2 days only, you can download Creative Chaos for FREE from the Kindle store!
So if you’ve been thinking about downloading it, now’s the time to do it!
I’ve decided to let Amazon be the exclusive distributor of Creative Chaos in electronic form for the next 90 days. Because of that I can offer Creative Chaos for free for the next two days! In exchange, I’m asking that you please review it on Amazon, Goodreads, blog about it and even tweet about it!
If you’re like me and love to do lots of reading in the summer months, hopefully this offer will make you add Creative Chaos to your summer reading list if it wasn’t already there.
And because Creative Chaos is only available through Amazon, Prime members can now download it for free!
I know not everyone has an eReader (though the Kindle app is available for free for your iPad, iPhone or even iTouch and possibly even on Droids), so if that is the case have no fear! In the month of July I’ll be giving away a paperback copy of Creative Chaos for FREE each week!
I’m not going to lie, I bought this wine strictly because of the name: Troublemaker.
Troublemaker is made by wine maker Austin Hope. The way his name is mentioned I assumed he is a big name in the wine world, but I had to google him to verify. The Hope Family vineyards have been located in Paso Robles for over 30 years. So they may not be the oldest wine making family but they’ve had a lot of experience!
Troublemaker is a blend of Syrah, Grenache, Mourvèdre and Petite Sirah. I have never heard of Mourvèdre before nor have I sampled it before. Apparently it is a grape often used in Grenache. Austin Hope’s goal as a winemaker is to make spectacular estate grown Syrah and Grenache.
This wine was interesting…it was full of flavor. I was at a friend’s house so we didn’t really give it any time to breath and I think this wine needed some time to open up.
If I were to have it again, I think I would give it a few hours in a decanter to see how the flavor changes and opens up.
The price point on Troublemaker was under $20 and I had never seen it before the night I bought it. Though that could partially be because it was on the bottle shelf of an end cap.
This was my first Hope Family wine that I’ve tried. I’ll have to see which other wines I can track down.
Posted by Kate O. on Jun 19, 2012 in freezable, recipes, soup | 0 comments
Yes, I’m the crazy person that made taco soup in the summer! I based this creation on my aunt’s taco soup recipe but made a few minor changes, and to be fair, I have no idea where she got the recipe from, so I am not trying to claim this as a family recipe.
Posted by Kate O. on Jun 18, 2012 in biographies, books | 0 comments
Finally I finished Let’s Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson. I hate being so busy I can’t finish a roughly 300 page book in a week’s time. Especially since it is the summer & the summer months are for poolside reading or indoor activities to avoid the summer heat.
I literally found myself laughing out loud several times as I read this book. The way Jenny Lawson’s mind works is amazing and I know understand why people love her so much. I haven’t ever followed her blog and if I hadn’t seen her mentioned so frequently on Twitter I wouldn’t have known about her book.
I can’t help but think if this were my life I would want to share it with everyone. But I’m also amazed at her openness and ability to share her life the way she does.
You don’t have to be a follower or reader of Jenny Lawson’s blog to enjoy this book or to get to know her. And you most definitely will not be lost reading her book. But if you want to catch up with Jenny head over to her blog.
I’ve been trying to read a lot of indie author’s books because I understand their plight in trying to spread the word about their own novels, but I figure a first time author, even with the backing of a publishing house could still use some support and so I don’t feel too guilty straying off the indie author path with this read. It was a good effort and a lot of fun, way to go Jenny Lawson!
Have you read this book yet? What did you think?
I’m just excited that I can now say I’ve read one of the books on my summer reading list. I am going to veer off a little bit for the next book I read because I had a friend loan me a book on the Kindle and I don’t have much time to get it read. But I will quickly return to the list I laid out and get those books read!
Posted by Kate O. on Jun 15, 2012 in photo friday | 0 comments
This week’s Instagram, photo a day challenge:
June 9th – Day 161
Day 9 – your view
This was my view today at brunch at Whiskey Cake, in case you missed it, here is my review of brunch.
June 10th – Day 162
Day 10 – best bit of your weekend
My favorite part of the weekend was getting in some reading and relaxing.
June 11th – Day 163
Day 11 – door
This is the only thing that separates my “office” from Beth’s
June 12th – Day 164
Day 12 – from a low angle
I cheated and took this picture of clouds a day late!
Jun 13th – Day 165
Day13 – art
My friend Erik makes amazing pieces of art. And if you think this looks cool, you should see his work in person, the textures are amazing! You can check out more of his art here.
June 14th – Day 166
Day 14 – time
Why is it the 4 o’clock hour is always the slowest hour of the work day?
June 15th – Day 167
Day 15 – yellow
I squeezed this lemon into my smoothie this morning.