Doing too much?

I had a conversation with a colleague yesterday about how we all end up doing so much — to the point of are we doing too much?

We probably are, and I am definitely one that falls into that camp. I like to help, I like to solve problems, I like to make things happen. Sometimes when you have your hands in too many pots, what suffers most is your own personal life. I mentioned how I love the weekends because somehow I feel like a person again. It is my time to recharge, refresh, and relook at the world in new ways. Yet, I wonder if I really should be doing that every day? My first inclination is to say: “Who has the time?” Partly that is true, and partly it is about making the time.

One of the ways that I do that is in the morning. I am not a morning person. I would rather drag out starting my day in more ways than one. I usually leave for work two hours after I get up in the morning. Unless of course I have an early meeting in which I either have to get up crazy early, or I have to give up my me time. I like to slowly get out of bed (you know, have the alarm go off a zillion times and hit snooze each time) rather than wake up by immediately taking a shower. Chris (the amazing husband that he is) makes our morning green smoothie while I shower, then I take my time drinking it while catching up on personal emails, articles, and maybe a dabbling of Facebook. That quiet time can be anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour, and I generally push it as long as I can. It is my “me” time.

Eventually he drops hints that it is time for me to get ready for work. I do, but often want to just finish that next thing or to hold those last few moments for me before I give myself over to a day of back-to-back meetings often without even time for lunch. When I get home, if I am not incredibly wiped out, my hope is that I get one more hour back to me for my run and to catch up on the book that I am reading. Then dinner, catch up on more work, and finally some blogging. Not much time in the day for much else.

Chris and I had the conversation over the weekend — if I was going to cut something out, what would it be? A tough decision. I want to do it all. I want to love it all. I want more hours in the day. Since that is not possible it often means less sleep, which is also not always the best answer.

What do you do when you are doing too much and you either do not want to edit or you do not know where to edit?

Random recipe: Six Ingredient Sausage Potato Pie

My favorite meal of the day is breakfast. I could have it any time of day. So, yes, I could eat it for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Often instead of going on a date night, we do a date brunch. A meal we love, it is easy, quick and since it is on the weekend, I am more rested and focused on Chris. A win-win all around. Typically one weekend morning we go out to brunch and Chris makes something at home on the other weekend morning (or often afternoon by the time we get to brunch).

Which is why we constantly are on the lookout for yummy and different options to make for breakfast. This is by far one of the best recipes we have made in months. It has a little bit of everything. Eggs, sausage, hash browns, kale, cheese. What more can you ask for? I could not stop at one piece. The sausage is I believe what makes this recipe. I am not usually a big fan of sausage, and you will usually never see me eat a sausage patty, but crumbled up pieces in this dish is heavenly. It just will not be the same if you remove the sausage. If you do not like kale, do not leave it out, you do not even know it is there.

SIX INGREDIENT SAUSAGE POTATO PIE [Pinch of Yum]

Serves: 6-8 (nutrition info is for 1 of 8 servings)

INGREDIENTS
  • 12 ounces ground sausage
  • 6-8 eggs
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1½ teaspoons Herbes de Provence
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 pound raw shredded potatoes (we just bought refrigerated uncooked hashbrowns)
  • 1 cup shredded cheese (we used a combo of Swiss and Gruyère)
  • 2 cups shredded kale

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a pan with oil.
  2. Brown the sausage until completely cooked and crumbled. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
  3. Whisk the eggs, milk, herbes de provence, and salt and pepper.
  4. Add the hash browns, ⅔ cup cheese, kale, and sausage from step one. Mix it all together.
  5. Transfer to the pie pan and top with remaining cheese. Cover loosely with foil and bake for 30 minutes or until set. Remove foil, turn heat to 400 or 450, and bake an additional 10 minutes until golden brown on top. Let stand for 10 minutes to allow excess moisture absorb. Slice and serve.

Random recipe: Chorizo Fundido

Some recipes hit the spot others do not. I am grateful that most of the time Chris and I are on the same page when we like or dislike something. We both started out liking this recipe, and then we did not. We used lime chips to dip and scoop the fundido. After a few minutes the cheese got really stringy and no longer was fun or possible to pick up with a chip. Maybe I am biased because we have had some amazing fundido dips at a few different restaurants here in Portland where the cheese stays soft and easy to dip with over the course of the meal. For this particular recipe I had to cut chunks and add to the chip in order to eat. Additionally, the chorizo left so much oil behind that it felt like quite a mess.

Two things to note. We cut the recipe in half and still had way too much food and did not want to keep what was left over. The second thing —  I am not giving up. I want to find a fundido recipe that keeps the cheese softer, more fun to eat, and not feel like I have a tire around my waist after finishing dinner. You might try this recipe (I mean look how easy it is) and decide if you like it. If you do, let me know.

Chorizo Fundido

As seen in Portland Monthly Magazine

2 lbs shredded Oaxaca cheese (Don Froyland brand)*
2 lbs fresh chorizo
1 Tablespoon olive oil

Coat a 9-by-9-inch baking dish with the olive oil. Heat a large, deep-sided, nonstick skillet over medium-high for 1 minute. Add chorizo** and cook for 4 minutes, breaking any big chunks apart. Add Oaxaca cheese, and cook together for 3 minutes more. Remove cheese and chorizo mix to the baking dish. Turn broiler on high and cook for about 5 minutes, or until top of cheese is golden brown.

*Note: We did not use Don Froyland brand.

**Instead of chorizo, add 1/2 cup yellow onion and cook over medium heat for 2 minutes. Add either 2 lbs fresh mushrooms (chanterelle or shiitake, sautéed), or 10 poblano peppers (broiled, then steamed in a paper bag, peeled, deseeded, and diced), and cook another 3 minutes before adding the Oaxaca cheese.

Valentine’s Day: Every Damn Day

Roses are red, violets are blue, I have something to say, yes, I am not a fan of Valentine’s Day. Aw hell I am not a poet, I cannot write poetry, and…

…I have never been a fan of Valentine’s Day. It probably started back in younger years when our schools would do a Valentine’s Gram delivery of roses + candy, and you always wondered whether or not you would receive one, whether it was from a friend, or a boy. I have high expectations, just ask Chris. On our first Valentine’s Day (I cannot remember if it was while dating or our first married Valentine’s Day), Chris was traveling and sent me flowers. They were tulips and when I opened the box, the flowers were dead. It was not Chris’ fault, but I was livid. I remember being quite clear that he never “send” me flowers again. He has honored my request.

Why does it make me happy to not receive flowers on Valentine’s Day by my amazing husband? On that very first Valentine’s Day together, I very clearly remember discussing it with him and telling him how much I detest Hallmark holidays. I just am not a fan. Why should corporate America tell us when we should shop, spend money, and love on our loved ones? It is bullshit. EVERYDAY should be a day that we love and pamper our loved ones. It does not mean that we have to give gifts, in fact I am actually not interested in gifts. I care more about how we treat, care, and love each other every single day of the year.

So, Chris and I do not celebrate Valentine’s Day. Yes, we might make a fun dinner together, and spend time together, but we do that every night that we possibly can. Yes, call us sappy, but see I still feel like I am in my honeymoon phase. I get excited to see my husband at the end of the day, and can text him near the end of the day to ask “when can we leave so I can see you, and oh, what is for dinner.” We might not have a relationship that is like many others, and we do not yet have kids, but we are close, tight, and well-connected. There are days that I worry about what bringing kids into the mix will do to our marriage, and I know it will be different, tough, precious, and make us grow in different ways. I digress, I still completely dislike Valentine’s Day. Who wants to fight over a table at a restaurant and pay double the price for a meal just so you can say you took out your loved one on Valentine’s Day? Why not do that once a month, or week? Why not find different ways to keep that love alive regardless of it being February 14?

So I veto Valentine’s Day, instead I think every damn day is Valentine’s Day. Every day should be about doting, loving, and finding ways to make the world better for your loved one. Love them so damn much. Hug them hard, cuddle with them, and do not, I repeat, DO NOT forget to tell how them how much you love them EVERY DAMN DAY.