Butternut Squash Meatball Breakfast

Saturday mornings are my favorite.  I wake up, run, drink coffee, grocery shop and cook.  There are not many things I love more than spending the morning in the kitchen whipping up a meal (okay – I love my boyfriend, cats, family, friends and sparkling wine more – in no particular order).  When one of the first free Saturdays in weeks rolled up, I had a mish mash of ideas of what I wanted to make.  Here is what I had to work with:

1 sweet potato that NEEDED to be used.

I decided to go with some kind of bowl with a fried egg on top.  After walking through the grocery store with an extremely empty stomach, I settled on turkey meatballs with a butternut squash sauce and swoodles (see below).

Swoodles: Sweet Potato Noodles – I recently discovered the Zoodle Maker which is a tool used to grind zucchini into a spaghetti-like shape.  It’s actually really great and can be used for a number of other veggies, too.  I.E.: Swoodles! (See photo below).

Swoodles: Sweet Potato Noodles

Swoodles: Sweet Potato Noodles

I threw the Swoodles in with some homemade turkey meatballs and Dave’s Gourmet Butternut Squash Pasta Sauce.

Butternut Squash Turkey Meatball Swoodles

Butternut Squash Turkey Meatball Swoodles

Since the single sweet potato did not make quite as much as I expected, I also made some quinoa which resulted in the layering as so:

1st layer: Quinoa

2nd layer: Meatball/Swoodle/Sauce

3rd layer: Mozzarella Cheese (I also had this at home, but admittedly realized the way home from the store that I really needed a good soft rich goat cheese – next time!)

4th layer: Fried Egg

Butternut Squash Swoodles with Quinoa and Egg

Butternut Squash Swoodles with Quinoa and Egg

Let me tell you, I was full from this meal from 11am to 7pm!


1lb Lean Turkey

1 Chopped Onion

Sprinkle salt/pepper

Sprinkle Basil (fresh and dried)

Sprinkle Rosemary (fresh)

Sprinkle Oregano (fresh)

2 eggs

1/4 cupish bread crumbs

Grease pan and ball in 2 inchish balls and bake for 20 minutes.

Once Meatballs are finished, spoon into sauce with Swoodles and simmer for 5 minutes.

Serve by self or over quinoa, brown rice, potatoes or other!  Add cheese and egg as preferred!




Sip & Stroll

This weekend is the Gig Harbor (WA) Food and Wine Festival and it kicked off last night with the “Sip & Stroll” which was a wine, beer, liquor and food tasting all along the beautiful Gig Harbor waterfront.  The Gig Harbor Food and Wine Festival is in it’s fifth year, but this was the first year for the Sip & Stroll, which will surely become the festival’s staple kick-off for years to come.  One of many highlights shown below from Heritage Distilling Company’s tasting room, where they were serving up an array of classics with a twist:

Heritage Distilling Co. Sip&Stroll

Bevanda (n): Italian working meaning: drink, beverage, or fizz. By: Heritage Distilling Co.



Pendleton Chair Inspiration

Yesterday my sister-in-law posted this pic on instagram.



My response is pretty clear and warranted.  That chair is amazing.  Further stalking shows that is a fixture at Under the Needle Tattoo in Seattle.  I can’t get it out of my mind!  My love for Pendleton is deep.  A couple weeks ago my friend Lindsey picked up a couple of chairs for me at Goodwill. I need to get them from her soon, and now I’m thinking that this style could be a great way to go on the re-upholstery.



Taking inspiration from this image:


There are lots of Pendleton and Hudson blankets on ebay, but is it terrible to cut one up just to reupholster something?  I’m kicking myself for not buying a patched Hudson last year at a thrift shop in Port Townsend – it was only $25 and it would’ve been perfect for something like this!

What do you guys think? Worth using a blanket for or should I find a similar geometric pattern at the fabric store?





Craigslist Find: Brass/Glass Swivel Coffee Table

Just saw this brass/glass swivel coffee table on Craigslist for $250 after I saw the following images when I was blog perusing last night.


Lonny Mag living room –

That massive plant is a Fiddle Leaf Fig by the way, which sell for $12 at Fred Meyer or Ikea (in much smaller size of course).  I’ve been thinking about getting one and putting it in a cool basket.


One more inspiration photo with that brass coffee table from Live Creating Yourself.  The one on CL says it is smoked glass but you can get glass table tops at Bed, Bath, & Beyond for $9/each in different sizes if you wanted to get it switched to clear glass.

What do you think? Do you like the glam brass?



K&J Tognocchi

Last weekend my best friend from growing up got married!  We met when we were about 6 years old playing t-ball.  The moms shared a moment over their Washington State University Cougar coffee mugs and us girls shared a moment over juice boxes and fruit roll-ups.  Kristen and I were never in the same class together in school until junior high, but our families were good friends and we spent a lot of time together playing fastpitch, camping, boating, and teaching each other about the world.  Kristen introduced me to Tricia Yearwood and Shania Twain, and I remember being really jealous of her cowgirl hat.


Kristen met Justin about 3 and a half years ago in Spokane and was instantly smitten.  I didn’t meet Justin until awhile later and I could tell by the way he looked at Kristen and laughed at her corny jokes that they were two peas in a pod.  Over the past couple of years, I’ve watched their relationship strengthen and grow so much.  They’re the kind of couple that truly makes you believe in fate.


Their wedding was the perfect picture of their personalities.  Both the ceremony and reception were in the backyard of Kristen’s parents’ house near Spokane, Washington.  My dad presided over the ceremony, which was just so cute.  There were so many details including cake stands made from logs, burlap table runners, home grown succulents for the bouquets, even signs designating tent camping areas, and where to park.  Best of all – Kristen and her mom completely redid her mom’s dress from the 1970’s to make it Kristen’s.  They changed the neckline to sweetheart, took the sleeves off and totally changed the front of it.  It fit Kristen like a glove and she was seriously glowing with happiness.

I just love that after all these years, Kristen still has the best western accessories (I’m pretty jealous of her boots!)

Cheers to the happy couple!



Back to Work

Oh man, nothing quite like the return to work after an excellent vacation.  Nathan and Erica’s wedding was a blast followed by a fun 24 hours in Boston.  I’ll share a bit more in the coming weeks!


Here’s a pic of the gorgeeeous venue! Union Bluff on Short Sands Beach in York, Maine!  You can see the chairs on the right set up where the ceremony was.

How do you get back to the grind after being on vacation?



Happy Wedding Week!

Oh my gato! My brother is getting married this weekend!  I can’t wait to get back east to help Nathan and Erica celebrate their big day.  Nathan is just over 3 years older then me, which meant we lived in very different social circles when we were younger.  The nice part about growing up, is that you learn that you actually have a lot of things in common with your siblings.  The past week getting prepared for the wedding, I’ve felt sentimental.


Nathan and Erica met through work and shortly after they started dating, Nathan moved down to Park City, Utah.  I was living in Salt Lake at the time and was thrilled to have him in Utah.  We hung out a lot that winter and skied together  a couple times a week.


I first met Erica when I flew home for Christmas but Nathan stayed in Park City because he had to work.  Erica’s family is from back east so she spent the holiday with our family.  She instantly fit in and truly made an effort to get to know everyone.


She came down to Park City to visit for NYE, and I third-wheeled my way through the evening with the two of them and through a couple more visits from her.

After the season ended, Nathan moved back to Seattle and we went back to our standard minimal communication.  When Rory and I decided to move back to the area, we started spending a lot more time with N&E and I started to realize just how serious their relationship was.  Erica is a born entertainer and has this ability to make sure everyone has a drink in their hand, that there is a table full of appetizers, and the whole house is so clean that you could literally eat off the floor.  The first time I witnessed just how in sync Nathan and Erica were was when Rory and I were visiting them in Seattle.  We had spent the evening and night before out and their roommate had just made a fantastic brunch.  We were getting ready to head to the Mariner’s game and all three of them decided last minute to join us.  I was semi-annoyed because I knew we would be late to meet our parents if they took too long to get ready.  As Erica quickly changed upstairs, Nathan fully cleaned the kitchen including wiping all the counters and coffee table.  He didn’t make a big deal of it and when I poked him a little, he just shrugged and said, “Erica likes things to be clean when we get home from somewhere.”  I could tell he was happy.


A year and a half later, I was starting to suspect that Nathan was going to propose.  One morning, I opened an email from him telling the fam that he was going to ask Erica that weekend in San Francisco.  She said yes … obviously.

And here we are, now a year and a half after the proposal.  Wedding week. The start of a marriage.

So, as Nathan’s younger, wiser sister, I offer a little advice –

“Marriage is about becoming a a team.  You’re going to spend the rest of your life learning about each other, and every now and then, things blow up.”

People say don’t go to bed angry, but the truth is, it doesn’t matter if you go to bed angry, all that matters is that you are willing to do whatever it takes to make the marriage work.  Sleep and time heal all.  Be nice to each other.  Be each other’s support.  Surprise each other, even if it’s as simple as picking Nathan’s favorite beer up at the store, or leaving a cute note for Erica in her work bag.  Listen.  Choose to take the higher road.  Make a home where you want to spend time.  Be resourceful.  Choose to be happy.  And most of all, plan for the future.

I love you guys and can’t wait for this weekend!  I’m not losing a brother, I’m gaining a sister!



Have a Wonderful Weekend!

Take me there.  I can practically feel the humidity and smell the tropical greenery.  Plus, I absolutely love that dress.  (Image via Pinterest but no original source!)

A couple of links:
25 Kids Too Trendy For Their Own Good  (I’ve actually seen S wear #13’s full outfit.)

Seven, Wild, and Free – a blog about a family of 7 living in a van.  Oh, and the 8 year old and 10 year old run ultra marathons.  Completely opposite of the link above. Haha!

Looking forward to a chill weekend before heading into 2 continuous weeks of bridesmaiding!



Hey you!

Just thought you should know…you're looking good

I took Monday afternoon off and went to Portland for a short  getaway with R.  I kept saying, “Yay, I’m so glad it’s Friday!” And then he would look at me and say, “It’s Monday, but nice try.”

Today feels like WednesdayMonday, which means that the week is already almost over.  Yay, weekend!