Friday, August 31, 2012

Swiss Oatmeal {Copy Cat Recipe}

I'm obsessed with Swiss Oatmeal.  I particularly love  Corner Bakery's Swiss Oatmeal.  If you are not familiar with Swiss Oatmeal, it is a cold oatmeal cereal with fruit and nuts.

I've had a similar recipe for years, but it was only similar.  It wasn't close enough for my liking.  So I finally set out into the land of Pinterest to find a recipe that was a good Copy Cat.  I found a few, combined them and came up with what I think is a very close Copy Cat Recipe of Corner Bakery's Swiss Oatmeal.

Here's what I do (note, this recipe is really just pictures, because I don't really have measurements for these things.  The photos aren't great, but it's easier if I show you what I do)...

Here's the Phase 1 ingredients...
 
Milk
Honey
Yogurt (I use a vanilla greek yogurt)
Oats (old fashioned, not quick...you probably could do steel cut too)

 
I've simplified this to where you only need a bowl and a spoon for Phase 1 because I use my yogurt cup as a measuring cup.
 
For the most part, it is equal parts Oats, Milk & Yogurt. 
 
However, I tend to use a little more oats than Yogurt...
and a little less milk...
Dump those three ingredients into your bowl and then stir it up...
Next add some honey
This is probably a taste preference thing, but this is how much I add (probably about 2 Tablespoons).
Then you stir it up until it is a soupy yucky looking combination.
Pop it in the refrigerator and let it sit over night.
The next morning, you finish off the Swiss Oatmeal with Phase II of ingredients.
This is what I like to use, but this is also where you can really personalize Swiss Oatmeal to your taste buds.
 
I use a granny smith apple because I like the tartness.  I use pecans because I like a little crunch.  I also do a banana and dried cranberries.
 
You could obviously do a different nut if you wanted, berries, raisins, or even some crushed pineapple could be good.
 
I'm showing you this photo for two purposes.
(1) You can see it thickens over night
(2) You can see that this is how much oatmeal mixture I started out with (watch, it's like Tuna Salad.  It grows and grows and grows as you add your ingredients).
I chop all the fruits & nuts and dump them into the oatmeal.  Then give it a good stir...
and voila!  Your Swiss Oatmeal is done!
 
See how full the bowl is?

The yogurt cup I use is 6 oz, and out of this measurement "cup", I get two large servings.
 
It's so good!

I'm calling BS

So I read yesterday that LeAnn Rimes has entered a 30 day rehab program for "stress and anxiety".  I'm calling BS on that right now!  I believe "drugs and alcohol" would be more accurate.  I mean seriously, is there really even rehab programs for stress?  I thought that was called a vacation, no?

Even if there is such a thing, why in the heck does she need it.  The woman and her husband freaking live on vacation.  I read gossip sites daily, and I can tell you that at least 3 times a month, there is some photo of her super skinny body in a barely there bikini on a different beach...Mexico, Miami, etc.  If you live on vacation 90% of the time, how can you be so stressed that you need rehab?  It's total BS.

I guess thank goodness LeAnn doesn't live my life, because I can tell you that on Monday & Tuesday I had about 3 months of stress compacted into less than 24 hours.  If I'd known there was a rehab for such things, I might have checked myself in!  Instead, I just developed an unhealthy hate for people and went on about my business. 



Thursday, August 30, 2012

Tunes

I love music.  I love finding new songs or new artists (not necessarily new, but new to me).  I find that I go through spells where I listen to the same 5 to 10 songs every single time I get in the car.  Right now, this is my "play list"...

 
Of course, Ryan's new single is played often!
He just released this a couple of weeks ago and then was on The Tonight Show.
He's getting Big Time folks!
I'm also so excited because Perez Hilton told his readers to check out Stay Awhile .
 
 
On a side note, I've turned my hair lady on to Ryan, so now I get to hear his music playing in her salon while getting my hair done.
 
I'm sort of addicted to listening to Free by Graffiti6.
It's such a fun song.  In fact, when I was getting my hair done on Tuesday, my hair lady had this on her play list also.  We cranked the volume and were having a totally good time!
 
 
I'm loving Run by Matt Nathanson (featuring Sugarland).
 
 
Another song I've been listening to a lot this summer is We are Young by Fun.
 
 
 
It's not unusual for me to have at least one Foo Fighters song in my playlist at any given time, but right now I'm listening to Miracle.  It's not new.  It's not even new to me.  I'm just playing it a lot.
 
 
I've got a couple of Grace Potter & The Nocturnals playing in my list.
An older song called Colors
 
and a newer one called Nothing But the Water (II), not to be confused with Nothing But the Water (I)
I is a totally different song from II.  I has been playing on an ABC new television show preview and is very haunting and soulful.  II definitely has soul, but is a much faster tempo, and makes me wish I was hearing them play it at a music club in NOLA!
 
 
 
Are y'all music people?  Some people listen to music when they are in their car, but don't really buy any or play music in their home.  Does that describe you, or are constantly loading up your ipod?
 

What are you listening to?  I'm always looking for something new!


Monday, August 27, 2012

Back to School {Again}

After having the second summer semester off from teaching, today is the day that I have to get back to the grind of being a professor.  I have three classes this semester at two different campuses.  All three of my classes are the exact same class, so I'll be repeating myself a lot.  That is good and bad.  I only have to prep for one class and then do it three times, but I also finding myself saying "Have we already talked about Citizens United?"  or "Have we discussed the Articles of Confederation?" often.

This semester is really going to be different than all others because in addition to a night class two nights a week, and a morning (7 AM!!!!) class two mornings a week, I'm teaching what is officially called a "Weekend Express" class.  I've dubbed it my "suicide weekends".  Three weekends this semester I will teach a class that meets on Friday evening, all day Saturday, and Sunday afternoon.  It's good because it's over in 3 weeks and saves me from teaching more nights per week for the whole semester.  I think the bad is obvious. 

I hope everyone who is in school, or has a kid in school, is having a great start to the school year.  I have to leave you with my favorite school picture of all time...


If you haven't seen me post this before, this is Tommy, my friend Lisa's son. 
This was his Kindergarten photo. 
He wasn't a fan of school. 
{maybe I should say isn't a fan, I'm not sure his opinion of school has improved}
 
He just started middle school today.
{where the heck has time gone?}

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Religions

I watch the news every night with Diane Sawyer.  This week they have been having a special where they talking about the Mormon church.  Prior to seeing this segment, I honestly didn't know much about the Mormon church.  My limited knowledge was based on observations made of the Mormon church that is across the street from the entrance to my neighborhood:

(1) They seem to go to church often
(2) They do not appear to go to church on Easter
(3) They drive like bats out of hell when church does let out (based on almost being ran over by several of their members leaving church).  Though I think this is a common trait among all faiths of people getting out of church, as I recall most Sundays my Dad expressing urgency in "beating the Baptists to the Ranch House for lunch!". 

But honestly, this post really has nothing to do with Mormons.  The piece on the news has had me thinking about other religions and what I know about them.  I don't know a ton.  I just found out that Muslims fast and do not even drink water during Ramadan.  I worried about the dog next door daily.  Because my neighbors are Muslim, it was hot outside, and I didn't know if the religious events got translated to pets as well.  But again, I digress.

I came to the conclusion that the religion other than my own that I know the most about is the Jewish faith.  How does a girl who grew up in a small Texas town, where I'm pretty sure no Jewish people have ever lived get to know so much about that religion?  That's the point of this post.  It's really a funny tale...

In law school, I took a class.  Yep, you read that right.  At my public law school, I took a class on Jewish Law.  Our text book was the Old Testament.  We had a few supplemental materials that we read, but primarily we studied the Old Testament, mainly the Torah (which is the first 5 books:  Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy).  Part of the class involved writing a paper, and it was required that you cite the Talmud as a source, so we had to independently study the Talmud as well.  If your paper was long enough, then it could count as your file paper that you had to write before graduating from law school. 

I had wanted to write about Jewish holidays.  Hello!  It's me, of course I wanted to write about Holidays!  But someone else got that topic, so I wrote about Jewish Dietary Laws.  I can tell you all about keeping Kosher.  I can also tell you that no way could I ever keep Kosher because that would mean no shellfish!  But how funny is it that while classmates are writing file papers on tax laws, I wrote my file paper on Jewish Dietary Law?

The other funny part of this story is that our professor for the class... yeah, he was Mormon.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Hell On Wheels

Hell on Wheels... though that can describe me on any random day, I'm actually referring to the television show on AMC.  It just started it's second season last Sunday. 

I managed to never hear about it until a couple of weeks ago.  I saw Common on Good Afternoon America, and though only half watching the interview, I got the gist that his character lived in the post-civil war America and was a recently freed slave.  I honestly thought he was talking about a made for tv movie or something, but when I did a search for it on my DVR, I saw that in fact it was a series.  It was actually very good timing because in preparation for the second season premier last Sunday, they ran the entire first season.  I sat my DVR and thought, "well, I'll check it out."  You know, because I need another series to watch like I need a hole in my head.  I didn't expect to love it, but love it I did, so I spent last Sunday watching season one like it was my job.



Here is the gist of the show: Cullen Bohannon is a former Confederate soldier from Mississippi. From the start of the series, we see him on a quest to avenge the death of his family by tracking down and killing every single Yankee soldier who was involved in their death. This is what leads him to Hell on Wheels, the name of the traveling town that follows the building of the first transcontinental railroad. Here at Hell on Wheels, Cullen meets up with quite the cast of characters.
This is one of the great things about the show, the characters.  There are really a whole host of compelling characters.  Elam Ferguson is the character played by Common.  He is a former slave (half white/half black).  He is initially doing the backbreaking work on the railroad, but we soon see him rise in rank. 

I am most drawn to the stories of two different women.  One is Eva.  We get to know Eva as a prostitute, but soon find out that she had been kidnapped as a young teen by some Indians and was tattooed on her face. 

I think the character Eva was led into a life of ill repute because she was no longer accepted by society based on her years with Indians, and it wasn't exactly easy to hide since she was a marked woman.  Eva and Elam become involved...well that's all I'm going to give away.  But this is especially interesting because it is partially based on a true story of a girl named Olive Oatman who was kidnapped by Indians and marked as the character is.

Then there is Lilly Bell.  Lilly Bell is British.  She came out to the west with her husband who was surveying the land and mapping it out for the railroad expansion.  Her husband was killed in an Indian attack and Lilly managed to kill off an Indian and escape.  She is so pretty and smart and really a career woman of the late 19th century. 

Not only that, but she manages to find the most perfect shade of pink lipstick on a weekly basis...a real feat in the middle of the wild wild west! 

There are another half a dozen characters that I could write about, but I'll just let you watch it for yourself if you are so inclined.  I will warn you, that it can be kind of bloody and gory.  I have "watched" several scenes with my hand in front of my eyes, and there was one sword scene that caused me to actually scream and scare poor Lola half to death.  While this series has done no favors for my irrational fear that I had as a child of being scalped by Indians, it has given me a cast of characters that I enjoy.  Thank goodness for cable and the series that they bring into our lives.

Got to go, Hell on Wheels is coming up in a few minutes!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Meryl & Me

You know how Us Weekly does Stars, They're Just Like Us! pages where they show celebrities shopping for groceries, getting a pedi, etc.?  Well today is my own version of that!

The lovely and super talented Meryl Streep is on a press tour about her new movie Hope Spring, and she is sporting a bandage on her left hand...


See that is Meryl, this was me...

While Meryl could have gone for a sassier color of bandage, they look pretty similar.  In fact, it seems Meryl hadn't heard my PSA about NEVER EVER EVER using a knife to remove a pit from an avocado, and while doing just that, severed the nerves in her hand.  She has already had the surgery to re-attach the nerves.  I haven't heard her mention any tendon damage, and since her bandage doesn't look like this...

I assume, she only managed to get the nerves, and not both tendons like I managed to do.

Remember, don't use a knife to remove the pit no matter how many cooking shows you see it on.  I know you think that you'll be careful and it won't happen to you, but according to what my hand surgeon told me, avocados are a major source of business for him.  If it can happen to Meryl and Me, it can happen to you!

Happy Weekend!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Another book event

Last night I went down to Dallas to see the author Emily Giffin.  My friend Lisa went with me and this is the third time we've gone to one of her signings.  She is definitely more popular now than she was 6+ years ago when we went to the first event.  I'm so happy that she is popular, but this means that the events are a bigger pain in the rear-end to attend...well that and the fact that Barnes and Noble couldn't organize their way out of a paper bag, but that's another issue.

Not only do I love Emily's books, but get this:  Emily was a lawyer, quit her job, moved to London and wrote her first book.  Now she lives with her family in Atlanta, but I've got to bow down to anyone who quits her job and up and moves to London.

Emily was on tour this time because she just published her 6th Novel, Where We Belong...


It was a fun event and in addition to grilling her about whether she plans to write a sequel to this book (and it looks like she just might!), we got the scoop on the movies being made from her other books.  You might have seen Something Borrowed when it came out in May 2011.  She assured us that there are still plans to make the follow-up, Something Blue, but that the same production company is making Heart of the Matter, and it looks like it might get made first (a little matter about Hillary Swank owning the production company and also planning to star in HOTM).  She did tell us that Love the One Your With is getting made sooner than later too, and that Maggie and Jake Gyllenhaal's mother is currently writing the movie script.  The newest book has also been optioned and looks like it could really be a go too.  I find this all incredibly exciting, even though the movies will never live up to the books. 




It was, as always, a fun event.  I love going to my favorite authors' book signings!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

A favorite "Holiday"

Every year, mid-July, my favorite "holiday" rolls around... the Nordstrom Anniversary sale!  This is the best sale because it is all new fall stuff at a reduced price.  As soon as the sale is over, the price goes right back up.  It's becoming a bit of a pain because pre-sale shopping is more and more important to be able to get the stuff you really want.  To pre-sale shop in store, you have to be a card member and have an appointment.  This year they did allow pre-sale shopping online, but I rarely buy any clothes or shoes online if I haven't actually tried them on in person.

I had a pre-sale appointment a couple of weeks ago.  It was one thing that kept me in check at the outlet mall.  Also, it's good that my birthday is around the corner and I do my own birthday gift shopping. 

I have developed the habit of buying multiples of something I like.  This shopping excursion was no exception, as you can see.  Here's my loot...


Starting top left and going around clockwise...

Bobeau Shadow Stripe Top (sadly a non-sale item)
Olivia Moon Print Peasant Blouse (wasn't on sale, but now it is!)
Caslon Scoop Neck Tees (good for layering, so got two basic colors)

Caslon Snap Front Tissue Weight Cardigan (love this, bought 4! purple and black shown here)
Me Too Lysette Flat (Love this brand.  So comfy.  Got black and leopard!)

Caslon Tissue Weight Cardigan (black and tan stripe this time)
Halogen Button Funnel Neck Topper (in black and magenta)
Hue Denim Leggings (in midnight rinse)

Caslon Seamed Burnout Tank (got this in purple, but it doesn't look as purple in person.  They showed it in store under the navy cardigan and it looked good)
Caslon Doublt V Tunic Sweater (in blue ocean)
Caslon Tissue Weight Cardigan #4 (Navy)

I've included links to most of the items in case I've sparked a shopping spree in you!  Hurry, the holiday sale ends August 6th!

 

2009 sweet cheeky designs sweet cheeky designs

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