Good Reads + Banini Bread

Happy Wednesday!

We’re halfway through the week and I’m counting down the days until my vacation to Columbus! I can’t wait to go back and visit our favorite places throughout Columbus this weekend. It will be busy but a great time.

I’m on my own this week and it’s a kind of a good thing because I have been immersed in two series lately: The Rose Gardner Mystery Series and The Whiskey Rebellion-Addison Holmes Series.  These books are so addicting! I started the Rose Gardner series recently and read books 1 and 2 and started book 3 this week. Then book 4 of the Whiskey Rebellion series came out yesterday! I love both series and highly recommend them.
Rose Gardner Mystery    Whiskey Rebellion

This weekend we had a couple of ripe bananas and fresh zucchini from the farmer’s market. We thought about experimenting with the zucchini but ended up deciding not to and instead made Banini Bread (Banana Zucchini Bread). I was a little hesitant to try this bread at first because I wasn’t sure how a fruit and vegetable would pair in the bread, even though I use applesauce in my zucchini bread. The bread turned out great! It’s nice and moist and has the great zucchini flavor with an added sweetness from the bananas. I used the recipe from Brown Eyed Baker. Next time I would like to try chocolate chip zucchini bread, there’s so many options!

Virtual Pug Run- 5k & 10K

Hi there!

How was your weekend? I hope it was great and I hope your day is off to a great start. I’m excited for this weekend when I’ll  head to Columbus for Labor Day weekend with Mike. I’m sad that summer is almost over but we both enjoy fall and we’re excited for football!

So I discovered this totally awesome race that I have to tell you about. It’s a Virtual Pug Run, 1 mile, 5K or 10K. You can run whichever distance on your own time before October 12th. For a donation of $27 plus a $2.50 service fee you will receive this adorable medal and help save some cute little pugs!

The-Virtual-Pug-Run

A blogger, Frugal Beautiful, has set a goal to save 26.2 pugs which means she needs 375 participants. If she attains this goal her fiance will run the Chicago marathon in a pug singlet. Now, the question is, what are you waiting for?! Sign up now! I have and I’m excited!

Pirates Game 8.23

This weekend Mike and I enjoyed seeing the Pirates play the Brewers. It was a great series- the Pirates won 2 out of the 3 games and we went to 2. We were hoping for a sweep Sunday but we still had a great time wearing our Pirate tattoos. Seeing McCutchen hit two home runs at Miller Park was amazing!

Cookies! (Oatmeal Raisin and Chocolate Chip)

Howdy!

How are you doing? How is your week so far?

Mine has been pretty good but I’m a little sad because from now on the sun will not set after 8 pm. It seems way too soon to be getting dark earlier! Or it’s because we’re in Wisconsin, I think I’ll blame Wisconsin. ;)

But I’ve been enjoying some pretty delicious cookies to make up for the closing of summer and the start of fall. This weekend I tried Gimme Some Oven’s Chocolate Chip Cookies made with coconut oil. The coconut oil replaces the butter or vegetable oil in the recipe so it’s a slightly healthier cookie or at least that’s what I’m telling myself.

The other batch of cookies I made were Mike’s favorite: Oatmeal Raisin. I’m more of a chocolate chip girl but Mike LOVES oatmeal raisin cookies. Since I love the chocolate chips more than raisins in cookies that’s why I usually bake oatmeal chocolate chip because it’s best of both worlds then. I used my Oatmeal Dark Chocolate Chip cookie recipe and just swapped the chips for raisins.

Which do you like better: chocolate chip or oatmeal raisin?

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Ingredients

1-1/2 c packed brown sugar
1 c unsalted butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla
1 egg
2 c old fashioned oats
1-1/2 c all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 c raisins

Instructions:
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl stir flour, baking soda, salt and oats.

2. In a separate bowl stir brown sugar and butter until well blended. Stir in vanilla and egg until light and fluffy. Add dry ingredients in 3 batches and then stir in chocolate chips.

3. Chill for at least 30 minutes.

4. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Scoop one tablespoon of cookie dough onto sheets and bake 10-12 minutes. My perfect time was 11 minutes and 30 seconds but every oven is different! Cool slightly, remove from cookie sheet, and cool on wire rack.

Enjoy!

Sunday Funday

Hi there!

How was your weekend? Did you do anything fun, try anything new?

Mike and I tried two new things on Sunday- brunch at Café Centraal and the Milwaukee Traveling Beer Garden. I’ve had brunch at Café Centraal before but Mike hasn’t and he was excited to try the Cheesy Gooey Spicy Mess. That dish looks like it should be reserved for those with iron clad stomachs! It pretty much has everything but the kitchen sink in it but Mike enjoyed it.

I decided to try the banana bread French toast. It reminded me of the zucchini French toast made on The Kitchen recently and I was very curious to see how it would taste. Turns out I like French toast with a regular type bread! This French toast was made with a peanut butter crème anglaise (which I don’t understand) and once I realized this I politely asked for it without the peanut butter. The banana bread makes the French toast very dense and heavy (go figure) and I couldn’t even finish the two slices they served.

The weather has been crazy out here and we went from 80 on Saturday to 64 on Sunday! But that just meant it was latte season or in my case, café au lait.
Cafe Au Lait

We didn’t take many pictures at the Beer Garden, unusual I know, but it was really cool. The beer is from the local brewery Sprecher and you can also buy their homemade root beer which is what I had and it’s very good! The Sprecher beer truck looks like a fire truck. Mike and I hung out for a bit sipping (root) beer and showing off our Nebraska Husker pride among all of the Badger fans!
Nebraska Pride

As I mentioned on Friday, I ran the Dirty Girl 5K Mud Run this weekend. Since the event isn’t timed I was able to do it whenever I wanted rather than the time I signed up for (1:45 pm) and I’m so glad I did! I ran with my friend and her mom and it was a great time, more fun than it would have been by myself. There was a lot of space in between the obstacles that I didn’t like but there was plenty of mud! We went down the mud slide and at that point if you weren’t too muddy, you were after going down the slide! Some of the obstacles had little rocks on the bottom which tore up my knees and legs but those are the extent of my injuries. I’m just happy I got all of the mud off me! I don’t plan on doing another mud run…but I’m glad I can check it off my list!

Mud Run Before

Mud Run Before

Mud Run After

Mud Run After

Friday’s Fab Five

Hi there! Happy Friday!

Can you believe we’re halfway through August already?! Time is flying by and I don’t want summer to end! I’ve been relaxing this week after my triathlon and then tomorrow I’m doing the Dirty Girl Mud Run. This should quite interesting because the run isn’t very competitive and a little free spirited which is not like me at all. But I’ve always wanted to do a mud run so at least I can check it off my bucket list!

I had to share one more picture from the triathlon, I didn’t include a post race one on my recap post. :)
Iron Girl  Finish

I’m excited to get some more food from the local farmers market this weekend, specifically CORN, and listen/watch the Steelers preseason game and then enjoy some other fun outdoor activities with Mike! Have a great weekend whether you’re relaxing, entertaining, or traveling!

#5 Coconut Oil Chocolate Chips
I am going to make these cookies from Gimme Some Oven’s blog this weekend and I am so excited to try them! I have been craving chocolate chip cookies and it’s time to give in! I’ll let you know how they turn out!

#4 Copycat Panera Frontega Chicken Panini
This sandwich is one of my favorite sandwiches from Panera. We made it a couple weeks ago with fresh basil, tomatoes, and onion from the farmers market. We actually seasoned and grilled our chicken and then shredded it and then made our own Panini press using our cast iron skillet on top of our cast iron griddle. Mike has never had the Panera version and I don’t think he will because the homemade one is ten times better! Give it a try!

#3 21 Genius Hacks for Fixing Ruined Clothes
I need to fix a pair of nude pumps that I have a couple scuffs on- time to buy some Vaseline this weekend! This list is great!

#2 Puppy Friends
Aren’t these little guys adorable?!
Puppy Friends

#1 Summer Floral Dress
I absolutely love this dress but unfortunately there wasn’t a link connected to the photo on pinterest. Any ideas on where I can find it or one similar?
Summer Floral Dress