Freaky Friday

Freaky Friday  all about the cooky and crazy. Today, again not many words. Enjoy! 😉

I don’t know whether I like the video more, or all the times I recognized someone else I like! Quite a cool vid.

And some more images. Read, think, smile!

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Thoughtful Thursday

Again, not many words from me today .

I hope you have a beautiful day.

Another Wordless Wednesday

Tasty Tuesday

I spent all week thinking about what I should share for Tasty Tuesday this week. I had a couple of ideas, but, after a hectic weekend, had not been able to make any of them.

As a last-ditch effort, I looked through some bookmarked “simple” desserts. I was looking for something that I could easily handle after work without making too much of a mess.

The good news? I found the perfect recipe!

The bad news? It contains Nutella – one of my favorite things EVER. So, if I make this recipe often? I’ll be rolling around town. 🙂

The incredible news? This recipe has FOUR ingredients! Yes, four! (ok, so I cheated and added one more. I’m sure that you’ll forgive me. :))

This is one of the simplest recipes I’ve ever found. It’s fast prep, one bowl, fast bake and the taste? Delicious! Husband approved!!!

So, I’m sure you’re tired of all the talk. Let’s get to the recipe.

Today, for our second Tasty Tuesday, we’re making Nutella Fudge Brownies. The recipe is by Abigail Johnson Dodge from Fine Cooking.

Please do not comment on my brownie with a huge hole in it. I inserted a toothpick to check for doneness and skewered a walnut. 🙂

The recipe is supposed to make 12 mini cupcakes or 6 normal cupcakes. I got 7 cupcakes. I’m sure it was due to my 5th ingredient. And the fact that I made my own directions. 🙂

Ingredients

1/2 cup Nutella chocolate-hazelnut spread (overflowing if you’re like me. Then, lick the knife. It’s the law)
1 large egg
5 Tbs. all-purpose flour
1/4 cup chopped hazelnuts(or whichever nut you like or no nuts if you don’t like them)
I added 1/4 cup of milk chocolate chips. (I’m a chocoholic, what can I say?)

Preparation (Dark pictures courtesy of my iPhone and night-time shooting)

Heat the oven to 350°F. Line a 12-cup mini muffin pan with paper or foil liners. Or, as in my case, liberally spray the cupcake pan with cooking spray, since you have no liners! 🙂

Put the Nutella and egg in a medium bowl and whisk (whisk – spoon, tomato – tomahto) until smooth and well blended.

Add the flour and whisk until blended.

Add chopped walnuts into the mix because a) you don’t have hazelnuts and b) you’re a rebel and want the nuts IN the brownie instead of on top.

NOT pictured. Add the fifth ingredient – milk chocolate chips – or whichever ingenious rebellious ingredient is your favorite. Butterscotch? White chocolate chips? Cinnamon? Caramel chips? Marshmallows? Truly? Anything goes!!!

Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tins (about 3/4 full) and sprinkle with the chopped hazelnuts. (or don’t sprinkle if you already added them :))

Bake until a pick comes out with wet, gooey crumbs, 11 to 12 minutes. (Be careful not to skewer a walnut, leaving a gaping hole in your beautiful brownie) My normal sized cupcakes baked for 18 minutes in my temperamental oven. I would recommend to check them at twelve. I would bake mine for 15 or 16 minutes next time, since I really think I overbaked mine. Although they were still delicious!!!

Set on a rack to cool completely. (Or just eat them warm with a tall glass of milk, because, you know, you’re too impatient and they look too pretty) Serve immediately or cover and store at room temperature for up to 3 days (I do NOT know in what parallel universe this small amount of brownies would last three days. If your house is like that, invite me over and we’ll take care of that for you ;)).

Please, do yourself a favor and TRY this recipe. You’ll be surprised and you’ll be hooked.

Tasty Tuesday!

Click on through and head on over to Sweets for a Saturday to check out a ton more yummy recipes!

Another linky party! Click on through for this week’s chocolate theme!

Me! Monday #2

I'm just sort of hiding.

This is one of those vague-but not really- kind of posts.

As I work on me, it may sound like all I’m doing is being selfish, selfish and more selfish. If anything, one of the things I’m sick of IS being selfish. Being self involved, surrounded by nasty self pity, keeping myself alone and wallowing in that pit of despair without looking up to *really* appreciate how blessed I am… All of that? It kept -keeps – me isolated. It’s a sickness. And it sucks.

Sadly, even becoming aware of some of the issues does not help me deal with them. Of course, I’m thankful for being more aware, but I’m not sure I have what it takes to promote the change. I feel weak against the onslaught of emotions that would result from making all the changes that would be required. I know I could start small, work my way out. Truly? I’m not even sure I’m up for even that. Yet.

The weight on my chest that makes it hard to take a real, necessary DEEP breath? It’s still there. I’m forced to take shallow breaths.

I know that in the grand scheme of things, I’m being selfish and stupid. I know that I’m LUCKY. I know all of that.

It’s still hard. Knowing really doesn’t help change how I feel. Knowing doesn’t make my pain any easier. It just fills my heart with another layer of pain – guilt. As I’m working on myself, I’m trying to scrape those layers off. Trying to get to the raw center and cause of the intense pain. Yet, it’s not easy. For every two steps forward? It feels as if I am forced/pushed at least one step back.

When I was growing up, I made plans for my future. What I wanted to do, where I wanted to go and of course, what it would take to get there. I second guessed myself a lot, but, I worked towards those goals anyway. I was blessed to have a family who loved and believed in me and helped me get to where I needed to be. But, you know what? Some plans? They weren’t so hard! While some things required planning, hard work, studying, etc, etc. Others? In my mind, they were a given. They would just BE. No one ever NEEDED to plan for THOSE. I’d seen it! That’s how it was! Those? They would just BE! And those? They were the definition of what I wanted for my future. Of what I was sure I was born to be. Big words. What I thought I was born to be. So, if I’m not that. Who am I? Everything else? Was supposed to be preparation. Getting ready.

But life? Silly thing. It really doesn’t care what plans you make. Life? It plans itself for you. And… What do you do when life has something totally different planned? Well, in my case? I became angry. I don’t like anger, so it became sadness. Pain. Extreme pain. And guilt.

I became a tantruming 13 year old. Locked in my room because I couldn’t, wouldn’t get my way. Honestly, I don’t even know what life has planned for me. I covered my ears and closed my eyes and I just keep repeating “I don’t care what it is! I had my plans! I want THIS! Everyone, even without asking, even without wanting it, gets THIS! THIS is what I want. Give it to me! NOW!” over and over. It felt like torture. And, locked in that place? All I saw was others getting IT. Easily, even hard. But always, always passing me by. And the pain? It grew to monumental proportions.

And now? I’m trying to uncover my ears, open my eyes and listen. I’m trying to look. I’m trying to see what life really has in store for me. I’m fighting that voice in the back of my head. The voice that says “no matter what it is, it will NEVER be as good as what you wanted”. I’m fighting it. Being locked in that tantrum? It only allowed life to pass me by. It made me miss out on so many wonderful things. So many blessings that I do have. It strained relationships, it made me stay in the anger cycle. It was unhealthy.

Now? I’ll be honest, I’m scared. I am afraid that I’ll just slip back and miss this chance. I’m scared that I won’t have many more chances. But… I’m working on that fear and I’m trying to use it. I’m trying to allow the truth to shine through. I may not love what I’ll find. I’ll be prejudiced to believe that my way was the only way. But, in being open, I have to believe that a different path may be better. No, that in the long run, it WILL be better.

Now? I need to be patient with myself. It’s not easy for me. I can be patient with others. Not so much with myself. And I need to be open to learning and accept that throughout this process, not everyone will understand. I’m being more open for the first time. In doing so, I’m allowing others to be spectators, others who have opinions. Others who will misinterpret my thoughts and actions. Others who clearly don’t understand where I’m coming from.

So. Why do it? Why allow myself to be exposed through this harsh, painful process? Well, that answer is easy. Two reasons. Number one is purely selfish. The reason I’m on this path is because someone took the time to notice that I was headed towards disaster. Sharing this? It brings support and help from totally unexpected sources. I need and want that. Number two is less selfish. If by writing this I can help just one person know they are not alone, I will have payed it forward. That also makes it all worthwhile.

There are two other reasons. If I will be honest. Those who misunderstand? They mostly mean well. Two? I would like to be able to come back someday and know where I was.

I think that’s it for this Monday. That was quite an emotional post. I’ll just end it with a few quotes. Just so you see what I’m working with.

“When you refuse to pay attention to what life is saying to you, life will make its point very clear. Life wants us to be aware of ourselves so we can make the necessary adjustments to live more harmoniously.”

“You do not have to like what is going on in your life, but you must accept that it, whatever it is, is going on. As long as you do not accept reality, you are powerless to define the role you will play. Failure to accept reality is a denial of your power to make a conscious choice. When you do not choose, you live by default.”

“Acceptance is knowing that no matter what, everything is and will be just fine.”

“Accepting a thing does not mean you approve of what is going on.”

“Acceptance means you are able to withdraw the emotional attachment just long enough to really see what is happening.”

“When you accept the reality of your life, thereby demonstrating your willingness to make a conscious choice, you honor the wisdom, strength, and tenacity of the divine spirit within you.”

Have a lovely Sunday!

Just another lovely Saturday

There are lots and lots of things going on. I’m trying to grow, to be brave, to have faith and I’m trying to help myself heal.

Today, it’s a lovely Saturday. Early rise with my husband, just lazily waking up, making a yummy breakfast, watching some Spartacus :), waiting, praying, reading, laughing, sighing, a little crying, and you know, just all around living.

So, in order to make this day a little more light-hearted and still posting, because, you know, I have to have my record breaking week, 🙂 I’m stealing an idea from Mandy. She’s smart and fun and she’s got quite a sense of humor. Plus, she says that some day she’ll come to Puerto Rico and we’ll torture our husbands by putting us all together in a room to talk and laugh and drink and eat. So, who wouldn’t love that? Plus, she’s quite a writer, so head on over to her blog and have some laughs reading how Nancy Lopez tried to kill her among some other quite fun stories.

But, as usual, I digress, a few days ago, she posted this nifty little alphabet post and I immediately knew I wanted to try it. So, that’s what you’ll get today.

Oh, oh, OHHH! but before I start, let me share a secret… I’m working on ANOTHER post… 🙂 Why? Because I won, I won, I won!!! My amazing, beautiful, kind, runner (yes, I have friends who run, even though I barely stand from the couch, yes, I know) and one kick-ass support system friend Serendipitie gave me the honor of surrounding me with some other kick-ass women and gave us a Good Egg Award! But, that post requires a LOT of thinking, so, I’ll work on it and share later. Still, I need to thank her! If you want to know who she is, and believe me, you DO, head on over to her blog.

So, that’s it for me singing some of my friends’ praises for today 🙂

Here’s a little alphabet of me!
A. Age: 36 I’m not ashamed to say it! Although, I REALLY don’t FEEL 36.

B. Bed size: Queen (our rooms are tiny!) and one Double)

C. Chore you hate: All of them. If I had to choose, I’d still choose all of them. I LOVE to cook, HATE to do dishes. Also, I can keep a tidy house. But clean? That’s another story. 🙂

D. Dogs: None. I’m not a pet owner.

E. Essential start to your day: Do FB, Twitter, Tumblr count? I mean, no… A shower. And coffee.

F. Favorite color: Purple!

G. Gold or silver: Silver, white gold.

H. Height: 5’5

I. Instruments you play: None.

J. Job title: QA Specialist.

K. Kids: None. Nieces and Nephews I adore.

L. Live: Puerto Rico

M. Mom’s name: Delia

N. Nicknames: Marilu, Mariluh, Luh, Lula, Mari

O. Overnight hospital stays: None.

P. Pet peeve: I have a few. The main one? Prejudices.

Q. Quote from a movie: “Me? I’m scared of everything. I’m scared of what I saw, I’m scared of what I did, of who I am, and most of all I’m scared of walking out of this room and never feeling the rest of my whole life the way I feel when I’m with you. ” (Do you know where it’s from, I’m SURE my sister Tereh knows… :))

R. Right or left handed: Right

S. Siblings: Tereh, Delih, Pao. Ok, real names Maria Teresa, Maria Delia, Pablo Jaime.

T. Time you wake up: 5:00 AM. EEEEEEWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

U. Underwear: Cutesy, no g-strings.

V. Vegetables you dislike: Beets? I can’t believe this is a hard question to answer!

W. What makes you run late: I have some sort of ADD. I always make myself (and my husband) run late. EVEN when I get up early and start getting ready early. I get SOOO easily distracted, time gets away from me.

X. X-Rays you’ve had: With how many TIMES I’ve fallen, it is remarkable that I haven’t had many. My ankle, My ribs. That’s it!

Y. Yummy food you make: Lasagna, Piñon (basically a ripe plantain shepherd’s pie or lasagna type dish), Anything Pasta and I LOVE to bake. Ask me to make you chewy oatmeal cookies. 🙂

Z. Zoo: I’ve not been to a zoo in, I can safely say, decades. That should be corrected…

So, some answers that Mandy would probably unfriend me for… But, I think I’m safe, mostly. 😉

Again, thank you for reading. Life is good.

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