Monthly Archives: September 2008

Monday Night Dinner with Farmers Market Ingredients ~ Newlywed Girl

As promised, I am posting some prepared meals using ingredients purchased at the Saturday AM farmers market. For our Monday night meal we made the following dish:

Pan Seared Filet of John Dory on a bed of couscous with sauteed spinach. The square dish is a buffalo mozzarella, basil, and grape tomato salad served warm. To accompany, there was a glass of Melville Chardonnay.

We got the fish, lemon, basil, and tomato at the Farmers Market. Everything was really tasty and easily made. The fish was simply seasoned with olive oil, garlic and salt and pepper. Then it was pan sauteed/seared on the frying pan heated with additional olive oil. Just cook about 3-4 minutes on each side. Serve immediately. For the salad, I put the tomatoes into a small pot with olive oil and sauteed them until they were soft. Cut the small balls of buffalo mozzarella in half and cut up the basil into small pieces. Place the tomato, basil and mozzarella into individual bowls, drizzle olive oil and sprinkle salt and pepper. Cook the couscous according to package directions.


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Last Chance to Enter our Giveaway!

Tomorrow evening we will be picking our winner for our End of Summer Giveaway. If you’d like to enter to get a chance to win our big prize, click on this link to go to our previous post to enter your information. You will also need to subscribe to our blog to be eligible, and write a testimonial for us when you receive your package. Check back here tomorrow evening for our announcement!

Enter for your chance to win the $120 prize pack – 1 of these packages will be given away to 1 winner.

Click here to see what we have for sale in our new store.

One lucky winner will win the following:

We will be giving away the following items in the end of summer package:

Retail value for this giftpack is $120

Please see this previous post for complete details on the drawing and rules and fine print.

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Friday Night Out! ~ Newlywed Girl

I actually went out over the weekend. This is really a rare occurrance. Normally, hubby and I may go out for a meal with friends/family or on our own, and then head on home for the rest of the night. This Friday was different, we made our way out for a low key birthday celebration for my friend M.

M traveled up from San Diego for the evening to see us LA people. San Diego being two whole counties away, makes seeing M difficult on a regular basis. Perhaps this is what motivated me and hubby to make our journey out past 9:30pm.

We went out to Edison in Downtown LA. It was a pretty happening night spot. This was also my first time here, since we are not typically venturing out of the West LA/South Bay areas. I really liked it! They have no annoying bouncer people at the door, no cover, no attitude, and you can reserve a table easily. It was really crowded and loud though, but the service was pretty decent.  I really liked the decor of the old power plant generators. Also, the lounge is located about 3 flights down from the street entrance.

Overall, this was a positive Friday evening out. I might be converted into going out on a more regular basis with friends, as long as its one of these lounge places. I have sworn off Hollywood for many years, and hope to keep it that way. I really don’t like those clubs anymore.

Do you still go out with your friends after marriage? I know that it starts to wind down some but I would think some of you readers out there still go out to a bar/lounge once in a while.

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Mom Talk: What if you cannot deal with all the mom talk?

These days it seems all that we see in the media are pictures of celebrities and their babies. I guess that means babies are in vogue again. (See this photo of Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise toting Suri everywhere with them). When I was growing up, if I went to a dinner or party with my parents, people would give my parents dirty looks and whisper, “they brought their child.” I remember going out with my parents to a party and usually always being the only child out while all the other children were at home with a grandparent, sitter, or nanny. My parents were the type of parents who just liked to be with us all of the time. In those days, which were the 70’s, children stayed home. Nowadays, children go almost everywhere with their parents. Today as a society, our norms have changed.

It is good and bad. The good thing is, we no longer need to call a sitter for every little dinner or party we need to attend. Now, other people will also have their children at the party, and our B can play with those other children, while we mingle with the adults. The bad thing is, people have become more open about talking about their children constantly as well now that they are so integrated into our lifestyles. Thus, some people, not all, have a very hard time talking about any other topics other than their children when speaking to other parents.

I have a friend who is a very successful attorney and spends her days in litigation with big corporations. When she is with me, all she ever talks about are her children. We never speak about anything other than her children and what they did in school, what they ate, or what they like to do during the day. Most of our conversations begin and end with her children. When I try to introduce new topics, she touches upon my topics, and before long veers back to the topic of her children.

Now, I like to talk about broad topics regarding the education of our children, or the nutrition of our children, but when we specifically talk about her children constantly and what they did yesterday, it gets to be a little boring. General topics about work, weekend plans, news topics, are never topics that I can get her to stick to for more than 5 minutes.

I suppose this single minded behavior has gotten her quite far in her career, and probably makes her a very good and focused mother, but as a fellow mom friend, it is quite a hard relationship sometimes. I am trying to figure out how I can get this friend of mine to refocus when we speak so that our friendship does not grow tired. It is a tough one though.

Today I am exhausted from all the mom talk…

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Weekend Pasttime ~ Newlywed Girl

I’m spoiled because I live in LA, the land of the year round farmers markets. When I was growing up in Boston, there was one tiny farmers market in my suburbia neighborhood, and it was only open from June to October (if we were lucky). It also had about 8 stalls with very limited items, and not to mention it was super pricey! Needless to say, my mom shopped at the local supermarket for all of our produce since it really wasn’t cost effective to go to the local farmers market during summer months. It was more novelty than anything else.

In LA – there are farmers markets in all cities, all over town, with 40-50 stalls. They have fresh local produce, seafood, eggs, cheese, and even a mini food court! My hubby and I spend our Saturday mornings at the Torrance farmers market at Wilson Park buying our weekly produce, seafood and then stopping by the food court to eat our favorite snacks. I also have to get my bag of kettle korn to take home. Some of you might think its weird to buy seafood, but its actually really fresh and straight from the fish market anyway.

I think its great to be able to support local farmers and buying fruits and veggies that are currently in season. Sure, the Trader Joes and Ralphs are super convenient, but I’ve noticed that my veggies actually turn bad a LOT quicker when purchased from a store. Plus, isn’t it great to think of cool new home made dishes using the in season fruits and veggies?

I think after my Saturday farmers market trips, I’m going to start thinking about my new recipes. All you readers and subscribers out there will be able to see my new posts on recipes from yummy ingredients from the Torrance Farmers Market.

I am looking forward to my trip tomorrow morning!

List of the LA local farmers market:

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Gossip Girl : What is your child learning from shows on television?

I was watching Gossip Girl today on Tivo as I was working out, and as much as I enjoy the show, all I kept thinking to myself was, “these people are supposed to be high school students?” I cannot help but worry as a parent what this show is teaching our children.

Children today are exposed to so many outside influences from My Space, Blogging, television shows, the internet, and everything else, I just worry about a show like this sending the wrong message to my child. Granted, my child is 4 years old so she is not watching Gossip Girl at the moment, but eventually I am sure she will be watching a show like this, and then what?

My niece watches the show because she is 12 and she says, ” Gossip Girl is PG 12 so technically she is allowed to watch it.” Kids today are already so mature. So, when I am watching Gossip Girl, I am wondering, is this what is actually going on at school or are they learning from the shows they watch? Another example would be the movie, “Thirteen.” Are they learning from these television shows and movies? I suppose it is a little bit of both.

As an adult looking into this world of teens today, I just don’t remember being a teen at age 14 or age 17 and acting so manipulative, going out on school nights in high school, manipulating friendships, and fighting for social ranking within my school. At the same time, I suppose there were those in my school that were part of these high school cliques and did act a certain way that reminds me of the characters on the Gossip Girl show, but there were not many.

At any rate, shows like Gossip Girl, 90210, and all the rest in between are definitely shows that have pushed the limits more than ever. Social ranking, money, and status seem to be the most important themes to the main characters of most of these shows, and that concerns me as a parent. Because, in a fashionable setting full of wealthy teens, it is just more fun to watch, and may send a message to a young viewer that these values are the only things that are important.

What I do know is, taking note from the teens around me now, I will have to make sure I communicate with my B as she grows up because in our society today, a parent needs to know what is going on in their child’s life to keep them grounded.

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Grandmothers and Grandfathers and how great they are for your kids…Florence Henderson of the Brady Bunch buying stuff for her grandson

Yesterday, I met my friend KL for lunch at a small salad, sandwich place in Century City known as Clementines and it was packed during lunch. I was thinking to myself, we probably should have just gotten take out and brought it over to the mall courtyard to eat, no one would have minded and we would have saved 40 minutes waiting for a seat to eat in for 20 minutes. Nonetheless, I had my 3 salad special and we caught up about our lives and our kids.

After lunch we headed over to Bloomingdale’s to check out their usual take 20% off of everything sale at Bloomingdale’s and continued to chat while looking through the racks of womens sweaters, coats, and jeans. Finding nothing we really needed to have, we took the escalator up to the kids department to see if our children needed anything from the sale. I found nothing in the girls department, and followed KL around while she browsed jeans for her son H. As I idly chatted with KL, I see Florence Henderson looking at childrens suit jackets and chatting with a few women near her.

In my head I was singing the opening verse to the Brady Bunch. I just loved watching that show as a child, and seeing her brought back all those happy afternoons of coming home after school, having a snack, and watching an hour of Brady Bunch at 5P on Channel 56 in Boston. Those were the days when we did not have cable, and the channels were 56 or 2.

When I stopped day dreaming, I looked up and saw Florence Henderson approaching our line with the boy’s suit jacket and a few other boys items to get ready to pay. She must have been buying something for her grandchild. I read somewhere she had a few grandchildren, and she looked like she was buying a few nice things for them.

There is something so amazing about having grandparents around for your children. I never really understood the wonderful relationship a child had with his or her grandparents until I had B. The love that a grandparent can give to a grandchild is so unconditional and different than the love that a parent can give to a child, it is truly something special.

When my mother or my mother in law picks my daughter up at school with me, my daughter’s face instantly lights up when she sees either of them. She often asks to stay over my mother in law’s house, and when my parents are in town, B asks to see them daily. She cannot get enough of them.

My father as a grandparent is a patient and loving person. He reads to B and plays with B as if he has all the time in the world. Even if he is in the middle of doing something, he sets everything done so that he can concentrate on reading to her immediately when she asks him to do so. My father loves his little grand daughter more than anything.

I think children who are lucky enough to have their grandparents around are truly lucky, and we as parents need to make sure we give them lots of time to spend with one another whenever possible.

To end, here is a little music from the Brady Bunch. I still love that show.

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