Showing posts with label friends. Show all posts
Showing posts with label friends. Show all posts

Two Vegetarian Picnic Sandwiches | Saying Goodbye to a Friend

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

My very good friend M is moving to the other side of the country. We met training for the 3 day. She's one of those people who totally 'gets' me and we hit it off right away. We have so much in common, we can talk for hours and we have the same taste in shoes. I'm so sad she's leaving. The little kid in me is stomping her foot and saying, “it’s not fair!” over and over again. 

A few weeks ago, I decided I wanted to do something special for her and invited her on a beach picnic. I wanted to take food that would travel well, be easy to serve and would be budget friendly. To me, there’s only one perfect picnic food that meets all those requirements: Cheese!

I love, love, love cheese. Especially now that I have braces. No matter how uncomfortable I am, I can always eat cheese! I put together a great menu centered around cheese and crackers. If you plan to take cheese on a picnic, look for hard cheeses like an aged gouda, cheddar or parmigiano reggiano.

For dessert, I took fresh berries and some frozen whipped topping. I also made parfaits with chocolate pudding, whipped topping and crumbled chocolate chip cookies. They were divine!

M and I didn’t have the whole day to spend at the beach so I kept our meal light. But, if we’d had more time I would have made sandwiches. She’s a vegetarian and I would have needed something both of us could eat. Here are two easy sandwich recipes (with cheese!) that you don’t have to be vegetarian to enjoy that work well for picnics.

Apple Cheddar Panini

Whole grain bread
Low fat honey mustard
2 thinly sliced apples
Thinly sliced cheddar

Lightly and evenly spread honey mustard over bread. Layer apple and cheese slices. Lightly coat a panini press with cooking spray (I’d use my George Forman or cast iron skillet). Grill each sandwich for 3-5 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before packing.

Black Bean and Lettuce Cheese Wraps

1 15 oz can black beans
¼ c chopped chives or onions
½ c cooked brown rice
⅓ c Italian salad dressing
½ c crumbled Feta cheese
Boston lettuce leaves, washed and dried

Set beans and chives in separate small bowls. Combine rice, dressing and cheese in a third bowl. Lay the leaves flat and fill with rice mixture and then top with beans and chives. Or, combine the rice mix, beans and chives in one container and the lettuce in another so the wraps can be assembled onsite at your picnic.

The only silver lining about M leaving is that she's moving to Boston and I love that city! I'm sure I'll be able to come up with a reason to visit.

*While we were at the beach I made a short video to toast our friendship. It looks like I'm about to propose because M is trying not to cry! This is part of a series of sponsored posts for National Dairy Month and

PROMPTuesday: Friends

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

I'm fortunate to have lots of close friends. The many new people I've met through blogging, friends I've known since grade school, and some since high school and college. Today's PROMPTuesday from Deb is to write about a friend:

"Do you have a friend who makes you laugh, a guaranteed good time? Write about this friend. Tell us a funny memory, something he or she said, or some goofball thing you did together."

It would take me many blog posts to tell you about my friends Amy and Amber. I met Amy in fifth grade and Amber sophomore year of high school. Amy still lives in our hometown and I try to get together with her whenever we go back to visit my mom. Amber's sister lives in San Diego and I see her when she comes down to visit. I saw both of them a few weeks ago at our first adult sleep over (not like THAT! well, maybe a little).

There were cocktails, a little breaking and entering and cleavage sniffing (let your imaginations chew on that!).

Anyway, when I saw the PROMPTuesday topic for this week I immediately thought of my high school year book and all the things Amy and Amber wrote in it.

From Amy: "Melvin, I will never, ever forget all the good times we had... Conejo Cowboys (with that BABE R (Let's Smurf 2, 3,4), Chasing JH around town, Conejo Valley Days (the more you show, the faster you go!), getting jobs together, having scream sessions at Foster's, Los Tantos Favoritos, visiting T at the Red Onion... Geez, there's so much we've done! Excuse me, is this yours? Does it fly? La, la, la Prin-cess Bride!"

From Amber (who wrote one sentance along the top of the page for 30 pages): "Junior year was a blast but this year, WOAH BABY! We've had some record breaking experiences. I'll never forget our math chats. You've taught me so much. Not just about the nasty stuff, but you made me really take a look at me. I'm very happy for you and Phil (Regis, Philopean). I'm glad we took the plunge into Life Skills [class] together!"

None of that means anything to you. Most of the things we find hilarious with friends leave everyone else scratching their heads. But to me it represents good times, great memories and pee your pants laughter (see adult weekend above).The fact that I can read those words, look through my pictures and scrapbooks and instantly go back to that time and start laughing all over again is a true testament to how much these two mean to me.

We've been through high school crushes, first boyfriends, crappy jobs, losing our virginity, college stress, sending friends off to the military, marriage and divorce, pregnancy and babies and anything and everything in between. We've laughed, cried, been drunk and danced together (sometimes on tables). I love them like sisters and I'm so glad I have them in my life. Homie and Bub, thank you so much for all the laughs we've had and those yet to come!

I Seldom End Up Where I Wanted to Go, But Almost Always End Up Where I Needed to Be - Douglas Adams

Monday, July 21, 2008

I believe in God. I believe in destiny and fate. And I also believe in free will. The curveballs of life and the forks in the road are all opportunities (sometimes in disguise). Every choice we make or don't make leads us to where we are right now. And right now, I'm in a pretty happy place.

Losing my job has turned out to be a blessing. If I hadn't lost my job, I would not be spending these summer weeks with my son going to the beach, the park and pool.

If I hadn't lost my job we wouldn't be the "dinner at 6:00" family we're becoming. I probably wouldn't know my neighbors very well. And I certainly wouldn't have discovered blogging. Which means I probably never would have met this amazing group of women.

The more time I spend with them, both online and in person, the more I am sure there was a plan in place when I took that last elevator ride back in November. I feel like there was something missing in my life that I didn't know was missing until now.

It's not that I don't have friends, great family or a good marriage, because I do. I guess I've just never had so many people who inspire me in my life before. Knowing that these smart, funny, talented, creative and beautiful women have been near me ALL THIS time and I'm JUST NOW getting to know them makes me want to stalk them to make up for the lost time.

Thankfully, Cheri graciously opened up her home for BitchHer 2008 so the Bitches and our Bitchlets could get together for food, drinks, swag and good conversation (though apparently, I missed a really important one about orgasms and baked goods).

I'm so glad to know you all. Be it fate, an act of God, the decline in the housing market or The Secret, having you in my life is making me a better person. Thank you!
Linky Love goes to: Cheri @ Blog This Mom!, Aaryn @ Thematically Fickle, Jamie @ Choosing My Own, Jenn @ Juggling Life, Kate @ katydidnot, Deb @ Sandiegomomma, Sam @ Little Dragon Fruit
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