Confidence! The single girl traveler’s best defense

As a single person, traveling alone becomes inevitable. When the choice is to stay home, or to explore the world, I hope everyone chooses to explore! But traveling alone is a bit of a scary prospect.

Recently I went on a business trip to NYC. I had never visited the Big Apple, so I decided to go a couple days early to explore the city. I had never taken a vacation on my own before and was more nervous than I’d hoped I would be. I think of myself as a very independent girl. I am strong and tough and confident. But I was still so nervous. I talked with a single girlfriend of mine who encouraged me to just go for it. Her advice was perfect – in all situations, show confidence!  I was determined not to let my trepidation get the best of me, so, being a planner by nature, I figured out the things I most wanted to do and see while I was there. It’s easier to be confident when you have a plan.

In the cab on the way from the airport, I gave myself a good pep talk. I have to admit, seeing downtown NYC from across the Hudson brought up excitement and extreme nervousness. The entire drive over, I followed our path on my phone’s mapping application and planned out what to do first. I discovered Carnegie Deli was a block away. Continue reading

Metta World…. Peace Out (DWTS – Episode Two Recap)

And that wasn’t the only thing out last night!!

OK….I have to admit….it watched it this morning and didn’t notice a “slip” at all. I think this picture makes more of it than there was. What are your thoughts on Nancy? She is sort of growing on me, although I don’t like the way she treated our wee Irish partner this week! Did anyone else noticed the way she kept caressing his face during practice? CA-reepy for sure!

This week I tried to find a fun quote for each couple that was either said or said about them.  Enjoy!

First jive of the night:  Hope and Maks:  nice booty shake and she looks like she is having a much better time this week.  Len loves it, but she lost her timing a little bit.  Bruno: precise and accurate..needs to work on it.  Score: 19 out of 30

Kristin and Mark: Quick step: a cute Marilyn!  Bedazzled by the blonde bombshell.  Hold your frame.  Dance wasn’t as good as you look.  Score:  22 Continue reading

MEAT MUFFINS! (and other muffin pan dishes)

Today, my friend Stefeny sent me a link to a very cool recipe site: Do You Know The Muffin Pan? Such a cool idea – all recipes that can be made in a muffin pan! Sadly, I had this idea years ago! I wish I’d thought to extend my idea to create more recipes.

Many years ago, I was in a co-ed Bible study with a group of friends. Each week, we took turns cooking for the group of ten or so of us. My week was coming up, and I had no idea what to make. I asked Becky what she was in the mood for, and she suggested meatloaf. I don’t know how the idea came about, but at some point I decided I could make personal-sized meatloaf using a muffin pan. All I did was use an established meatloaf recipe, but divided the recipe in the muffin pan cups and baked. MEAT MUFFINS! were born.

(At this point, I must explain the all-caps of the MEAT MUFFINS! You cannot just say meat muffins. There’s a very specific way you need to say it. It’s a kinda screechy MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEET MUFFINS!)

Since then, I have made only one other dish in my muffin pans (other than cupcakes or muffins, of course) – egg scrambles. It’s actually extremely simple. In a bowl, scramble eggs with a little bit of water or milk the way you would if you were making scrambled eggs. 1 egg equals approximately one muffin cup (depending on how much stuff you add too it). Add whatever extras you’d like. I recommend cheese for sure, but you can also add ham, sausage, peppers, bacon, veggies, etc. (a good recipe can be found here, but feel free to add what you’d like). Combine it all in a bowl. Spray your muffin pan with a non-stick spray, or, you can use aluminum or silicon muffin pan liners. Divide your mixture between the muffin cups and bake. I bake mine around 350 degrees for about 20 minutes. They are done when the tops are slightly browned, and a toothpick comes out clean.

Cooking in a muffin pan makes for great personal-sized meals. They are easy to freeze, and easy to bring to work for lunch. And they make for great conversation starters at parties!

I would love to hear your ideas of what else you have made in your muffin tins!

Tools every girl should own

I love tools. Hand tools, power tools, saws, drills, the works! I know not all of you ladies are like me! But there are a few tools that every woman should have in her tool box. You can buy them piece by piece, or you can find kits with basic tools at Lowes, Home Depot, or even Target or Wal-Mart. I just have one request. PLEASE do not buy the pink tool kits made for women. Please. I actually find it insulting. I love pink as much as the next girl. But just because we like pretty things does not mean that we need cheap tools decorated in pink. It makes us look like sissies who need special tools because we can’t handle real tools. So please, buy real tools. Craftsman. Black and Decker. Kobalt. Porter Cable. Just NOT pink!

Here are the basics you need to take care of your home:

First of all, get a tool box. It doesn’t need to be huge, just large enough for the basics. This is my house tool box (I do have a much larger one in my garage).

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DWTS-Episode One Recap (and Introducing Becky!)

beckyFirst, I am happy to introduce you to Becky, my dear friend. While Becky has recently left the world of the single gal to enter the land of the married, for years she was a shining example of an independent, single woman. Strong minded, loyal, funny, self-aware, generous and never willing to sacrifice for less than she deserves. So, I am allowing her to remain an honorary member of the single club. Each Tuesday, she’ll be giving us a breakdown of that brilliant weekly entertainment show that crosses all womankind – Dancing With The Stars! And now, here’s the recap!


Welcome to my first official recap of DANCING!!!!  With the Stars!!!  I am still working on a format, so I promise that these will get nothing but better from this one forward.

(First, I want to assure all my new readers that I have watched all 12 seasons of DWTS from the beginning, and am fairly spot-on with judges scores before they actually give them out…..so yes….I like to think of myself as somewhat of an expert on the show. Now, let the games begin!) Continue reading

Save your salad!

As a single girl, I’ve discovered I throw away so much food. I just can’t seem to eat it all before it goes bad. The worst are the packaged salad mixes. They last two days, maybe three, before the lettuce turns soggy and mushy against the plastic bag. Half the time, the lettuce is already wet and mushy when you buy it!

I have discovered a solution, a pretty simple one. When you buy bagged salad, immediately open it up (well, ok, when you get home!) and empty the contents into a colander in the sink.

Sort through it, taking out any bruised or mushy leaves. Next, gently shake it in the colander a bit to get the water off and separate the leaves. Let it sit for an hour or two, until it’s dry. Be sure not to leave it out too long, or it will start to wilt, which defeats the whole point!

Once it’s dry, put the lettuce in Tupperware or a plastic container. Don’t pack it in too tight – keep it loose so the air can circulate. This trick also works for the boxed lettuce. You can put some of the lettuce back into the plastic box, but not all of it! It will be too squished, and you’ll be back where you started. Put about half in the box, and put the rest in new containers.

Store the container(s) in the refrigerator and it should keep for at least a week, sometimes longer.

This trick has been a great money saver! And now I’m able to buy my two favorite mixed salad bags (Arugula Blend and Herb Salad mix from Trader Joe’s), combine them, and eat them until they’re gone, instead of until they go bad!

Choose your battles wisely! (aka: knock, knock motherf*@&er!)

A friend of mine sent me a link to what is now quite possibly the greatest blog post I have ever read in my life! The post is about picking your battles. Specifically, a battle her husband picked, that she hilariously countered. With a giant metal chicken.

Other than providing me with fits of giggles for days on end, the post got me thinking of some of the more ridiculous arguments I’ve had in my life. Continue reading

Be the hostess with the mostest!

A single girl cannot sit at home and wait to be invited to gatherings – parties, barbeques, game nights, etc. Odds are, many of your friends are married, or coupled. Sometimes they have their own ‘couples’ events. Don’t let yourself be forgotten or written out. Keep yourself in the loop by showing what a great addition to a party you are! And the best way to do that is to plan the party yourself!

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Being a good hostess is like being a good friend – put others first and make sure you always provide a warm, welcoming haven for your friends. Here are some tips to keep in mind when you’re planning your next soiree.

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How NOT to use a crowbar

For the next week or so, every person I see is going to be staring at my chest. They’ll wonder “What did she do? Do I want to know what she did? Was it something dirty? Is it rude to keep staring?”

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Well, here’s the answer:

A couple months ago, I found a great chair by the side of the road. It was water-logged and kinda gross but the foundation of it was so fantastic. I’d been wanting to find a chair to refinish and this was a cool (very!) cheap option.

As I was working to strip the fabric to I could refinish the wood, I was unable to get the back of the chair off. I found two screws and undid them but still the back wouldn’t come off. I spent hours tugging on that damn thing. I had my dad come over and see if he could help me figure it out. He couldn’t figure it out either. We started tearing the fabric off trying to see if we could find how the back was still attached. At one point, I brought out the crowbar to try to pry the back off. But, I forgot safety and instead of prying away from myself, I stood right behind it. As I was trying to pry it apart, the curved, down-pointing end was pointed toward me. When the crowbar slipped out of the chair, the end nearest me scraped right down my chest. I looked down and all I could say was ‘Damn. That’s gonna look hot.”

But the best part? My dad doesn’t miss a beat: “Well, there’s a new blog post for you – how not to use a crow bar!” Thanks, Dad!

So, here you go:

The WRONG WAY

and the RIGHT WAY.