Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Playing tourist in your own city ♥

I really love museums. I think it comes from my love of being surrounded by old things.  Things with history and sentiment.  It's emotional for me. I know that sounds realllly nerdy - but it's true ♥  So when my husband asked me what I wanted for Mother's Day I told him I wanted a day at a museum.  Since museums aren't his thing, he offered to be my driver and babysitter for the day.  Yaaay! 

So I made my yearly (although I wish it was more) visit to the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston on Sunday. It's one of my favorite places.  The amount of inspiration in this building is immeasurable.  Famous artwork and artifacts from all around the world. 

I went by myself, as I usually do, and took my time wandering from room to room.  Paintings speak thousands of words. Don't get me wrong, I am not an expert in art. Just an expert in pretty things, like Monet's Water Lillies. How lovely is this? It's even better in person! 

For $5 I rented a headset (that was like an ipod) and got a guided tour around the museum. It was very informative! People keep asking me if I mind going places alone and the truth is I don't at all.  I rather enjoy it.When I was younger I never ventured out or did anything by myself.  I got to a point where I felt like I had been missing out, so I quit wasting time and now I do what I want weather I have company or not. Turning 40 will do that to a person. It's a great feeling : )  

I can take my time and see what I want to see.  When I needed a break I got an iced cappuccino and lemon scone in the cafeteria.  It was total ME time and I loved it! 

It wasn't crowded that day and at times I found myself in hallways all by myself.  This one on the third floor had one wall of windows that treated me to a nice view of Boston! 

It's fun playing tourist in your own city.  Sometimes we take for granted places and things that are right under our nose!  

I had a lovely morning exploring the museum and the grounds.  The landscape is gorgeous! All the trees are in bloom.  It was 87 degrees and felt like a summer day! 

After my visit, I met up with my family and we took some time in the city together exploring some of our other favorite places, then home for homemade pizza and banana cream pie. 

It's nice to change it up once in a while.  Kinds of feels like being on vacation.  

Do you like being a tourist in your city? I can't be the only one ♥ 

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Roasted parmesan broccoli ♥

Here is a recipe for the best broccoli you'll ever have.  I've roasted broccoli in the past before but never like this.  I've found that if you roast it on a high heat for a short amount of time (opposed to a lower heat and a longer roasting time) the broccoli becomes crispy and caramelized around the edges.  And the parmesan cheese adds the perfect touch to finish it off. 
Here's how to make it:
1 bunch fresh broccoli florets
olive oil
sea salt
black pepper
parmesan cheese

Preheat your oven to 500 degrees.  Don't be scared.
Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spread the florets on it. 
Drizzle with olive oil and season generously with salt.  Toss to coat and roast for 12 - 15 minutes. 
Toss the broccoli and turn the baking sheet halfway through to ensure even roasting. 
Remove from the oven and season with fresh ground black pepper and parmesan cheese. 
Serve immediately!
Even you non broccoli lovers (and you know who you are.... : ) will love this recipe. 
Give it a try!

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Brown sugar spiced baked chicken ♥

My son John made his First Holy Communion on Saturday.  We couldn't have asked for a better day.  The ceremony was beautiful and after church we had a lovely brunch with family and friends. 
So proud of this little guy!

It's been a busy time around here.  I've been very preoccupied with planning his big day.  Now that it's all said and done I couldn't be happier with how it all turned out.  Nothing got spilled on his white suit and the cake was delicious.  He's growing up.
It's all good ♥
As you know I've been in a food rut since the winter.  I have been pushing myself to try new recipes in hopes of breaking my boring routine.  I found a new chicken recipe on Pinterest and tried it out on my family last weekend.  It was so good I made it again during the week.  What I like best is that you can prep it the night before and then 20 minutes before you eat just pop it in the oven.  After a busy day at work, I really appreciate that!
Here's how you make it:
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons paprika
1 teaspoon oregano
1 tablespoon garlic power
salt & pepper
Salt and pepper the check breasts.
Pour the brown sugar, paprika, oregano, and garlic powder
  in a plastic bag.
Add the chicken and shake to coat. 
Leave the chicken in the fridge at least 3 hours  (or even overnight) to absorb the flavors. 
*overnight is best! the longer it marinates the better it is!
When ready to cook, arrange the chicken on a foil lined baking sheet.
Bake 20 - 23 minutes.
The chicken will be nice & juicy!
This recipe has definitely been added to my rotation.  It's really delicious!
 I served this (at my parents house) with roasted broccoli, rice, and rolls. 
It was a hit! And better yet....a change for the same old - same old. 
A little prep the night before is definitely worth it!
And speaking of roasted broccoli, I am going to share this recipe with you soon.
Broccoli has never tasted so good!
I literally just came inside from looking at the full moon tonight.  It's bright and huge and I love it!  I know some of you (and you know who you are : ) were moon gazing too.  It may sound silly but I love how we are all looking up at the same moon.  It makes the world feel just a little bit smaller. Don't you agree? ♥
I once wrote a post about the magic of the moon.  It's one of my favorite posts I've ever done.
Wishing you a happy week ahead! Spring is (finally) in full bloom! It's going to be 80 degrees tomorrow and I'm going for walk in the morning.  I want to start my week off  right!