Wednesday, August 25, 2010

"Lifey as a Wifey" Wednesdays!

Earlier this year, Tim and I decided to take action on spending more one on one time together. At the time, we were both working full time, planning a wedding, hittin’ the gym every chance we got, Tim was volunteering with Spring football, and for me, til I just about D.I.-Died! We were warned time would be tight during the hustle and bustle, but were also wisely advised to set apart special time with each other. Hence, the creation of “Date Night.” It’s one night we set aside each week,(for us it’s Thursdays) to spend time alone, doing something fun. We do our best to not plan anything else on that day, unless an official change of plans has been approved by both parties, and a substitute day has been put in place.
All seriousness aside, we try to make this a priority, but seeing that we don’t have kids, and things have settled down dramatically, we aren’t as strict with sticking to only Thursdays. With that, this week’s Lifey as a Wifey Wednesday is about our amazing Date Night this past week!

Compliments of Rubio’s, we had two tickets for a San Diego Harbor Excursion Cruise that we have been holding on to for over 6 months in hopes for great weather to make the experience all the more enjoyable! Luckily, the weather has been more than desirable, so we went ahead and booked it for Saturday night. Our reservation was set for Dinner for Two aboard the Spirit of San Diego vessel departing at 7:30pm sharp. After snapping a quick photo, it was all aboard, where they greeted us with a glass of champagne and we were on our way!
We noshed on a pre-arranged three course menu of delicious Caesar salad, Chicken, Steak or Fish with side accompaniments, and a yummy Chocolaty truffle dessert all the while cruising around the beautiful San Diego Harbor. Not sure if it was to set the stage for romance, or to make things especially awkward for those on a first date, but all the tables were arranged with both chairs on the same side. Tim and I have never been same side sitters, but we had a good laugh about it, and enjoyed the intimacy.
After our scrumptious eats, we ventured out to take in the ocean breeze and snap a few more photos of this amazing city we call home. We splurge on the cheesy commemorative photo they took upon boarding, but opted out on the horrific display of dance moves from DJ Jamie and other drunk cruisers going on in the lower deck. ;)
The night commenced with an awesome firework show over the bay as we cruised back into the dock. Overall it was a pleasurable and very memorable experience, which made it an absolutely perfect date night!


PS~Sorry for all the dark pictures!

Monday, August 23, 2010

BevMo's Wine Cake

Another simple but yummy recipe from the Cargo Vault! This time it's compliments of my Mom, Beverly-aka BevMo. It's a delicious yellow cake with an adult beverage twist!

BevMo's Infamous Wine Cake

Fine fixins:
1 box yellow cake mix
1 large box of vanilla pudding mix
4 large eggs
3/4 cup cooking sherry wine (usually found near the vinegar at the store)
3/4 cup cooking oil
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

Small details:
Preheat oven to 350
Grease a 10in bunt pan with butter/margarine and sprinkle with all purpose flower so its "Non stick."

Add cake mix, pudding mix, and nutmeg in large mixing bowl, followed by the rest of the wet ingredients. Mix on low to medium until the batter is creamy-not lumpy!
Pour cake batter into greased bunt pan and place in oven for 45-50 minutes (aka my oven 60!)  Set the timer and stick a fork or toothpick in it at 45 mins to see if it's cooked all the way through.
When it's a yummy golden brown color and fully cooked, remove from oven and let it cool for 40-60 minutes, depending on how much time u have! (The longer the better)
Once cooled, give the edges a little swirl with a knife to make sure its not stuck to the pan, then flip the bunt cake over on to your serving dish, sprinkle with powdered sugar and ENJOY!!!

Note: If the cake is not cool enough you run the risk of it not popping out of the bunt pan smoothly- AND the powdered sugar will melt.

I made this for Tim's company Picnic yesterday and it was a hit!  However, I think Mike Firenze and I polished off 1/2 of it alone. BOOM! Yum :)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Freshman 15

Love is Sweet!
photo by Kacey Luvi
We’ve all heard the rumors, and hoped they wouldn’t come true….but it’s inevitable that newlyweds have a long running history of packin’ on a few extra lbs now that they’ve sealed the deal for “Happily Ever After.” Unfortunately, I have finally fallen victim to the freshman 15 of our first year of marriage, and it’s only been four months! According to studies, I am predicted to possibly gain 15-30 lbs over the next few years! OUCH! (read here!) Staying in bed until the last minute, late night ice cream dates on the couch, trips across the world eating blocks of cheese and pints of beer, and a fresh tapped keg within an arms reach to name a few of our downfalls. Over the years, both Tim and I put serious emphasis on maintaining our beach ready physiques, all of which is now two sheets to the wind! We have overindulged, gone back for thirds (notice I didn’t I say seconds), had an extra scoop, and took one for road any chance we got. It’s been fun stuffing our faces in the name of love and it’s been something we have both wanted to do for years now. BUT, it’s time for this Gluttony to end! Perhaps the June gloom that has taken over our entire summer is to blame as an excuse to not get into a bikini at the drop of dime, but the weather is a changin’ and I refuse to not change with it! I’ve never been one to not be happy in my skin…but I’m watching that slip ever so quickly, so it’s time to get a move on to ensure I can take full advantage of the beach days ahead without feeling the need to lather in spray tan and hide under an umbrella. I’ve decided (Tim claims these are my infamous words) to commit to being active for AT LEAST 30 mins each day. If you know me, I am a gym rat, and my usual goal is 60-90 mins 5-6 days a week…but let’s not rush into things just yet! I still plan to keep my work out regiment, but want to enhance it with consistency. My 30 minutes of activity could be running sprint intervals like the NY Jets til’ I puke, or it could be a nice walk with Tim on the beach. Both of which have their appeal, but regardless of the caloric burn, I am moving in the right direction. I’m going to Call it 30 for 30. Thirty minutes a day for 30 days…and I will see where I am at. I know enough to know that 30 mins a day isn’t going to take me be from Drab to Fab, but paired with sensible eating (maybe just seconds, not thirds) I think it will get me pumped up to get back on track, while still being relaxed and having fun indulging. The truth of the matter is this, I am not single, and I am not competing (Bodybuilding) anytime soon, so why not have an extra scoop and feel good about it? I am on a mission to find a happy balance between Queen of the Beach and “Fat and Happy.” :)
Now if you will excuse me, someone brought Donuts to work today and they are calling my name ;)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

"Lifey as a Wifey" Wednesdays!

From the very beginning of our courtship, Tim and I have put God in the center of our relationship. We started off as friends going to church together, and ended up married serving in our church together! Even when Tim was designing my wedding ring, he kept this in mind by choosing to use 3 stones, symbolizing God in the center with us on each side. Lord knows we are NOT perfect, and there is no doubt in either of our minds that we wouldn’t be married today if it wasn’t for our faith in God. With that, we are always looking for ways to not only grow in our relationship with Him, but also with each other. Our love for Jesus is actually our strongest attraction and similarity to one another, so it’s fun for us to explore this further as husband and wife. We have dabbled here and there with classes at church and volunteer opportunities over the years, and currently we help out with the Jr./Sr. high school group on Wednesday nights. However, over these past five weeks we have taken a short hiatus with the youth group to attend a Servanthood class taught by our Pastor.
T&A 2008 :)
Technically, this class is required in order to volunteer with the youth, but we were interested in taking it regardless! This is the first class at church Tim and I have taken as husband and wife and just like having a fun study buddy in school, we get to talk about what we learned and even do our homework together at night! I must admit, Tim is a better student than me in that he is always pumped to whip out the Word and dig in to our weekly assignments. Tonight is our last night, and although I am excited to get back to playing Dodgeball and chitchatting with the junior highers, I’ve really enjoyed taking this class with my husband. It’s opened our eyes and hearts to what God has in store for us as Mr. and Mrs. and it’s brought us closer as we learned together.


Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Casa de Cargo Enchiladas

I have been inspired by Jess and Amber to do a little cross blogging today ;) Here is a very simple recipe from my Dad that I prepare quite frequently at Casa de Parlier. I'm hoping to post it on Friends & Foodies Forever~A clever blog started by Stephanie and Jess to keep in touch and share yummy eats!

Casa de Cargo Enchiladas
*makes about 10*

1 package of ground turkey (or beef)
1 large pack of Mexican shredded cheese
1 small can CHOPPED black olives
1 bundle of green chives
1 pack of white mushrooms (you can buy them chopped or sliced too)
1 large can of enchilada sauce. (I like Las Palmas Medium)
1 pack of flour (or wheat) tortillas
Preheat oven to 325

Cook meet over the stove until 100% cooked. I sprinkle in a little Lawry’s Seasoning Salt for some extra flavor on the turkey-especially if I get the extra lean.
Chop up the mushrooms and chives and put in separate bowls.

Create an assembly line of all your ingredients. -Tortillas, cheese, olives, chives, mushrooms, meat, sauce (put in bowl with spoon or just in can with spoon.) If you are using beef, you might want to drain the meet and put it in separate bowl. Beef is much more juicy than turkey! On a separate plate take a tortilla and spread sauce on it like a pizza. Not too much, but just enough to get it moist and cover the inside. Load it up with all the ingredients, but no too much, so you can roll it back up. In order of most to least, I usually put meat, cheese, mushrooms, chives and olives. Roll it up taquito style and place in a rectangular Pyrex dish (sprayed with PAM). I put the folded side down so it stays closed. Once they are all packed in a row, I pour the extra sauce over all the enchiladas, especially the edges and in between each so they cook nicely. Then I douse more cheese over them (lots!) and finish off by sprinkling the chopped olives here and there.
Since the meat is cooked, the “cooking” part is really more of a warming/melting of the cheese. My oven sucks, so it can take over 20 mins. But I just keep my eye on it. I don’t like the tortillas crunchy, so I keep my eye on that too! I also reheat some sauce for dipping in case you want to wet your whistle more than what’s already on there. ;) Tim adds Tapitio too!
To make these enchiladas figure friendly, I always use extra lean turkey meat, low fat cheese, and whole wheat tortillas.
Any left over mix ins are great over pasta, or add lots of cheese and melt it into a tortilla chip dip! YUM!

Friday, August 13, 2010

"Lifey as a Wifey"....Friday!

There are several lessons you learn when you exchange your “I” for a “We” at the alter, but one that tends to surface the most is sacrifice. I have to admit, Tim seems to be winning in this department as he has shown he would do anything for us and my happiness, but I am definitely working on it! I think we both would admit that we are finding ourselves doing (or not doing) things we normally wouldn’t, all in the name of love. And through it, we are bonding, and experiencing new things as a married couple. Although petty, one thing that completely blew my mind recently was Tim’s willingness to watch the Bachelorette with me every Monday night! I’ve never watched one of these series before (clearly either did he), but we were both hooked come the season finale. I could tell Tim enjoyed the fact that I was THRILLED he would even sit in the room while I watched it, let alone follow it and debrief after each episode. It really made me Very Happy! ;) So here we are, final episode, Alli and Roberto live happily ever after and the fun is over. I turned to Tim and said, “Now that its over we have no TV shows to watch together!” (We have VERY opposing views on what's entertaining.) I should have known there were strings attached to his appeal for the Bachelorette! He then says, “Since I watched the Bachelorette, You get to watch Hard Knocks: The NY Jets Training Camp with me!” waahhhhh wahhh.

Well, this week was the first episode, and I must admit that I enjoyed it very much! Minus the foul language, it’s very entertaining and I have already learned a lot about America’s favorite game. You could say I hung up my heels for cleats, but happily so, because I know it brings joy to my husband for me to sit with him during all things football. After all, the season is just weeks away, so this is my training camp as much as it is for the Jets! Sacrifice is always worth it, especially when you reap the benefits. Besides, watching the top athletes in the world run around shirtless in spandex pants is hardly sacrifice ;)
Nick Mangold

Monday, August 9, 2010

The Ultimate Tap Out

Saturday was a sad, yet accomplishing day at the Parlier household. We officially tapped our first Keg in the Kegerator. Tim was Djing in the guest room while I did my usual weekly house cleaning. As I have mentioned to some, having a resident DJ pumping techno beats through your house while you clean is awesome….especially when paired with a fresh cold beer from the kegerator (compliments of Tim’s groomsmen). I went for a post beach/pre-dinner brew, and to my dismay, I poured the last and final glass of the yummy Ballast Point Yellowtail Pale Ale we had been sapping on for the last 2+ months. I ran into the other room with a look of shock, sadness, and a funny grin to tell Tim of the tragedy, and being the good wifey that I am, handed the foamy glass to my husband to enjoy the last drop. ;)
We both agreed, that although disappointing that it’s gone, it’s a blessing in disguise because our beer bellies were growing as fast as our love for this delicious pale ale! I think we might let the Keg sit empty till we recover a bit from our trip and drop a few lbs. Football season is around the corner, so I’m sure it won’t be empty for long! Any suggestions on yummy brews?


Thursday, August 5, 2010


Our last and final destination during our visit to Ireland, was a small coastal town of Howth.  Howth is located on a peninsula about 10 miles north of Dublin City Center and just a quick 30 minute train from where were staying. As you can imagine, the aftermath of our awesome Pub crawl was lurking upon us as set out to explore this township all the locals had been raving about. We didn’t get more than 100 yards from our hostel before we stopped for a Guinness...The Hair of the Dog that Bit You…Whatever that means.

Next stop was a quick walking tour through Trinity College (400 years old) and the Book of Kells (transcript of the 4 Gospels dated back to 800AD). The weather in Dublin is refreshingly clear and crisp so walking through this historical campus was truly a breath of fresh air. We were so thankful that it hadn’t rained for us yet, as we were told it had rained for 3 weeks straight prior to our visit!

After touring the college we stumbled upon an exhibit in their Science Gallery called BIO RHYTHM. It was swamped with families and kids, so we didn’t stay long, but it was a very interesting exhibit relating sound with the body.

Up next was a short, but painful, train ride to Howth. Neither of us knew what to expect from this place, we were just told we had to go. Once we reached our destination it was time for lunch, so we walked the coast looking for a place to eat. First impression, I would relate this area to Seaport Village in the San Diego Harbor. Fresh fish were literally being caught and served on the spot, but the fruits of my labor from the night before weren’t feeling it…if you know what I mean. We settle in a restaurant called the Oar House and dined for over 2 hours, Tim having Fish N chips, and I had a simple pasta dish. Truthfully, neither of us wanted to get up and luckily Europeans don’t mind you taking your time. Atlas, we were feeling up to par and decided to take another lap around and explore a little more.
Kids and families were buying fish to feed the cute fat sea lions, and locals were fishing for their daily catch over the pier. It was such a cool atmosphere to soak in. Feeling 110% better than before, I saw someone with ice cream, and began the hunt. To our surprise this ice cream cone led us to an adventure we would have never expected! Long story short(er) we followed a few teenagers up a hill that we saw people coming down as we ate our dessert. We figured it was just a local road with better views of this amazing coast line.

We took a few pics, but kept walking to see what was next. Finally we arrived at the Cliff trail. Collectively we decided to up the ante and go for this hike that was quoted to be shy of 2 hours. To our TOTAL surprise, this was by far one of the coolest experiences, phenomenal views, and breathtaking pictures that our camera can barely give justice. Every time we turned a corner we yelped with excitement because it was beyond words what we were looking at. Crashing waves, soaring sea birds, lavish green hillsides, and cliffs that dropped off into a blue sea of mist. It was truly beautiful. Tim and I fell in love with Ireland on this hike and couldn’t wait to explore further. The sun was starting to set so we decided to head back to catch a train back to City Center. We took a charming path through the actual town of Howth and got to see the beautiful houses and adorable neighborhoods. BTW-Irish people are the nicest people on the planet! We stumbled upon the Summit Inn-a local landmark and stopped in for yet another Guinness. From here were continued our walk through town and fell in love with it that much more. Everything about this place was truly magical! (Howth is Magic is their slogan and website) We passed about 10 restaurants and 6 bars before we stopped in for, you guessed it, another Guinness! Turns out the bar we chose was a local fisherman’s bar. It didn’t even have a women’s restroom! Luckily, women were allowed (I asked) and they had one next store. We missed our initial train, and the one after that, before we decided to take the last train out for the night and grab dinner. All the restaurants were full with reservations, but we found 2 seats at the bar at a place next store to where we ate lunch. We dined on yummy fresh seafood and wine while having the best time reflecting on the adventures of the day.
After our bottle of wine, we were convinced we wanted to pick up and move there. So was the bartender ;) It was sad to say goodbye, but we trained it back to Dublin City Center on cloud nine. On our way back to the hostel we stopped in (for a Guinness) at The Bank, which was an actual bank made into a bar. It was very cool, but we were slightly under dressed in our workout attire and Nike’s. To our demise, our second wind kicked in, and we found ourselves changed and hittin’ the streets looking for a good time. Two nightclubs and a bar later, we were well versed in Ciders, Irish stouts, and astoundingly MOJITOS! Two words will say it all….DONER KEBOB!!!!


Wednesday, August 4, 2010


It wasn’t a surprise to Tim and me that when the alarm clock went off at 4:30am the day of our trip,  it was more than painful to get up. Having acknowledged this the night before, we were all packed up and ready to go, so all we had to do was wake up and leave! Destination #1-DUBLIN, IRELAND. Our flight was at 7am on Wednesday, with a short layover at JFK and we were sanctioned to arrive in Dublin at 6am Thursday morning. Ireland is 8 hours ahead, but our total travel time= 15 hours. OUCH. Although we “lost” a day of travel, I see it as we gained a day because we got there so early on Thursday! Getting to Dublin was the easy part. I slept well on both plane rides, all things considered, and I was very pleased with the airline Aer Lingus. We had individual TVs, 2 meals, and more leg room and reclining action than expected. Tim however, didn’t sleep too well on either flight, so it was a grueling start to the trip. However, we were both all smiles once we saw the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, they call Dublin.
Allow me to paint one last picture of our travels before I move on to our actual explorations of this awesome city. I had the grand idea to get a spray tan the night before the trip. I was destined to be in shorts, tanks, and bikinis once we hit Italy, and I wouldn’t dare be caught without a California glow. Not having time to catch some rays, I went for the spray…Tim so nicely pointed out that not only was I getting more orange each minute of our flight (I looked like an umpa loompa), the Irish aren’t exactly known for their sun kissed tans either…so I might as well of had an American flag with the California bear stuck to my forehead. Add to that my over the top leopard print luggage, tall boots (my theory was to save room in my bag), and lack of navigation skills and you get a helpless orange blonde tripping in the cobblestone streets, and a frustrated, tired husband that is 10 yards ahead wondering why he let me leave the States! To my defense, I found this awesome sign ;)

We couldn’t check in to our hostel until 2:30pm and by this time it was 7:30am-so we had about 7 hours before a nap or shower were in site. Neither of us were thrilled about this, but we pressed onward and mapped out our day over a traditional Irish breakfast. We were staying in what they call TEMPLE BAR, which is the hot spot of Dublin. Our hostel was 2 doors down from the original Temple Bar, for which the area is named. The best way for me to describe it would be the Gas Lamp District of San Diego. Everything was walking distance and we hit the ground running with our early start. After getting our bearings on the area, we walked to St. Patrick’s Cathedral (first Church in Dublin), The Braising Head (oldest bar in all of Ireland), the Guinness Brewery (home of the Irish stout), the Dublin Castle and then back to Temple Bar for Lunch....just to name a few! All before 2pm mind you, so at this point we were delirious, but feeling good after a few beers. ;)

Knowing the nightlife Dublin had to offer, we unanimously decided to do a Pub Crawl on our first night. Best decision we’ve made as a married couple! All joking aside, check out that adventure here.


Monday, August 2, 2010

The Ultimate Case of the Mondays!

I’m finally back in the western hemisphere, but unfortunately, also back at work! Tim and I had an AMAZING trip and I cannot wait to share the details of our adventures in Europe. As expected, it was more intense than we could have imagined seeing that we were not only traveling through 2 countries with a dozen of our friends, but also attending the Wedding of the century, along with the several preceding events to the Big Day. Eight flights, five train rides, and countless cobble stone gallivants we returned home in one piece, more in love, even better friends, and surprisingly not as broke as we anticipated! I’m hoping to share my adventures one city at a time over the next few days/week…as well as share what you really care about; THE PICS! Until then, hang tight while I attempt to catch up from this jet lag/culture shock I am enduring on this dreaded Monday.