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Shredded Garlic

Happy Turkey Day! Hope you had an amazing, tummy stuffing holiday. For me, I came home from work with a fever and terrible unknown back pain. I feel very bad for thanksgiving for some reason this American holiday seems a little cursed apart from the tragic event that led to this holiday but also how this holiday is right before finals and do we need to talk about black Friday? Not judging you for getting that thing you got waiting in that long line, because I totally did too. My mother had been crying for a toaster oven because it’s energy efficient plus she hates how every time she has to take out all the pots and pan she stores there (Have I mentioned how smart she is about every little household things, or is it normal?)

So we went to Walmart and jcpenney to get a toaster oven and I also got a slow cooker. While I was waiting in the line, I was thinking how good it feels to have the financial freedom to want something to buy? (Not literally buying, because come on now! My dad never gave me a small loan of 1 million dollars) but knowing I could dream about it makes me feel a lot better.

I remember growing up not having any choice over what I wanted. My parents have always been very big on saving money, so instead of cheaply made sparkly hot pink backpack I had a camouflage backpack, which would hide the dirt. Mind you, I was not in Texas so that did not make me really happy. My parents told me the sparkly ones break in a few months and sure they did, but I thought that was a good thing, I mean they get to buy a new one with extra cool stuff and they did too. My dad has always been smart about making purchasing decisions, my mom? Sorta… sometimes it’s hard to argue with her when she is set on going to the other Walmart 25 minutes away because they might have the 3$ cheaper toaster oven. She also sucks just a little with American cooking; After discussing for two and a half day we settled on instead of me wanting to cook a whole turkey, I will cook a whole chicken and she can cut the turkey to make curry. I brought all the things needed to cook my herb lemon garlic-y chicken.

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^^ Okay I know that’s not the prettiest looking chicken, but trust me it smelled good and I blame the knife to for not being able to chop the herbs finely. I stuck half of a lemon and some garlic cloves inside too.

After baking it, I put it on top of the counter and went back to my bedroom to read “the curious incident of the dog in the night-time” (Pretty hooked) and I fell asleep.

I woke up to find very well shredded chicken on the table and my baked chicken was nowhere to be found. Turns out my mother had taken the extra step to lower my workload. I was pretty upset for not being able to take a nice picture, but maybe was more upset to find whole garlic cloves in my bite. I asked her, “Did you take out the stuff from inside the chicken?”
“Well, I made a salad with the leaves (herbs) and squeezed the lemon juice on top”

[rolls eyes] “and what about the garlic cloves?”

“What? I didn’t see any”

The cloves were juicy and blended with shredded chicken. I tried my best to pick them out.

Oh! Forgot to mention! I got a french press and coffee grinder, my room smells pretty divine now ūüôā

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FFOM:Favorite Foods Of The Month

IMG_2988 Hello there

How’s going? As of right now I am officially done with my first year of college in Texas State University. Woo!

The hardest part was probably the last few days as I was getting ready to pack my stuff, I was a bit sad to leave my schedule. As much it was hectic I was comfortable doing it and I feel absolutely vulnerable when I spend my day doing nothing which always seems to be the case at my parents. Also the last final I took was one of those, that you can either choose to take it or not, if you do take it then you have to do pretty good to get an A, or you can choose to be content with a B. And my average was 89.8! This close to getting an A…

Anyway enough about my final rant. It’s over right? Summaaaa!

So since I am going home on Wednesday, I decided to do some fun stuff over the weekend. But I am not sure why it appears as Texas has lost it’s ability to be adventurous and since last week it’s either pouring down rain or being gloomy for last few weeks and the weather channel is saying it’s going to stay the same all next week too.. [insert hopeless emoji here]  

I decided to splurge a little bit over the weekend and ate some good food. We got lucked out as when we went to the state park in Austin, the sun was shining bright and went tubing the next day when it started raining right after we left.

I apologize for not having better pictures of the park or tubing. I promise next time we go I will be sure to take lots of pictures and dedicate separate posts on them but to make it a little better I am including few pictures that friend Eric took while we were at the park.

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To get in they charge you $6.00 entry fee per person. Probably that’s why it’s not as crowded. It has a pretty walking trail and if you feel like getting into the water they also have upper and lower fall. We decided to save the water fun for next time.

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 We were trying to capture the flying caterpillar.

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This was taken by Clay’s phone. I know I know! What was I thinking! wearing those flip flops? Well, there are few weird things about me I should say, that is I do not like close toed shoes.. I feel as if I can not breath and can’t wait to get home and take those off. As I mentioned on my moving out of dorm post that I started taking my stuff to my home since spring break, well I took most of my shoes too and were left with basic three pairs of comfortable shoes and it was a rush decision for us to go to the park and I never paid attention to what was I wearing.. I do intend to go back there sometime over the summer and take good pictures.

Okay! Enough about other stuff. Let’s get to the main stuff.. Food! This month I have had a lot of delicious treat. Since my meal swipes (the food plan you are required to buy if you live on campus) were not over, I decided to spend a little bit more time on the food courts.

These Spicy Chicken Tacos at the Den was amazing. I normally grab a burrito and run but I decided throw a little bit of cilantro and onions on top of these crunchy tacos and boy it was like street tacos.

IMG_2762 Target got us one night.. and we came  back home with this gelato…

IMG_2887 I apologize again for not providing a better quality picture and the finished results.. we went to HEB grabbed 2 big pans, some corn tortilla and few other ingredients and made chicken and beef enchiladas.. this is the chicken enchilada before going into the oven.. It was gone fast.

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This was a monster burrito at free birds but we were in a hurry.

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Oh! And we got a backyard swing! But because of the weather we were only able to take it outside for one day. I will post more on it with gardening update. But here we picked up some California Fries from super burrito! They are so good! One serving of this stuff fill up me and clay completely. So we grabbed some more.. again.. today..

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We even tried to recreate it.. Grabbed some fajita meat, cheese and fries.. We over baked it.. The best thing to do is, cook the fajita separately and bake the fries separately, then turn off the oven and put your fajita and cheese in the pan. The heat from the oven will melt the cheese without toughening the meat.

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While we were in Austin we went to GourDough’s. The inside was pretty dark and crowded so we requested to sit outside. I really liked their rustic theme.

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We ordered an appetizer called the big cheez. Basically fresh mozzarella wrapped in donut dough and deep fried. I am not usually a big fan of deep dried food so next time I would probably go with the Ode to the trailer.

 

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When food arrived it was getting pretty dark. I ordered a side of fried Brussels sprouts. They were so good!!

Whenever someone serves burger with fried eggs I have to get it. So Ron burgundy was my choice without a doubt. I enjoyed it very much and the donut dough was a nice touch. But as I mentioned not so big fan of deep fried stuff, I used my fork and kinfe to enjoy my burger without eating the donut buns.

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And the different kinds of sauce should keep any hipster content and I was over the moon too.

After eating we decided to go to Amy’s Icecream as Eric has never been there and it was right across the street.

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How much I regret not bringing my new camera…

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The topping center and clay is getting his icecream zombie style.

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Finished zombie

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I got my usual coffee icecream with gummy bear. It doesn’t make sense? well it’s not out of the world combo. But they are good.

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The next day we were craving BBQ. So we decided to try Kent Black’s BBQ. They have really pretty outdoor but as soon as we took our food out flies marched right at us.. so we moved inside.

Look you get to play too!! How cool is that?

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I was hoping to get half chicken and half pound of brisket but we were told that they were out of chicken and turkey so we decided to get 1lb of brisket. It was delicious!

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IMG_2989 well there ya go! Our favorite foods of the month. I apologize if they look all scattered and not so pretty pictures. I promise to do better job on it next time. Let me know if you have tried any of these places, how did you like it? Do you have any recommendation for us? Let me know!

Happy Summer!

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Summer Starting Kit + Movies In The Park

IMG_0217Hello Lovelies!

Hope you are having a wonderful weekend. I wanted to talk to you all about summer. It’s almost here! As much it is fun, it sometimes puts a pressure on me, “I have to enjoy this summer and do a lot of fun things” so at the end of the summer I don’t say, “I didn’t do anything this summer :(”

Well that being said, everything about summer is getting expesnive. Anywhere you want to go costs money and if you have kids it’s no fun at all to be in a hot crowd with your kids when uncle sun seems to be as bright and as hot he could be.

I wanted to let you all know about free fun things you can do in austin or surrounding areas. DO512 has a list of events including music, movie, comedies, sports and lots of fun stuff. You can RSVP through them or even have a chance to win it.do512

Another very useful website I should name is “Free Fun In Austin” This website is everything. Not only it gives you information about free or very cheap fun things to do with your kids it also has a whole list of places where your kids can free. They also send out weekly fun date ideas. It’s amazing. Please go subscribe to always stay updated with fun things happening around Austin. It also has a very useful calender for you to check out what is happening each day.

It also has a whole list of free movies in the park. This gives you an opportunity to have picnic with your family. Go ahead few minutes before movie starts, play around the playground, ride your bike and then bring out your blanket or chairs and enjoy fun movies for free. This could also be an amazing date night ideas for couples. alamo

Alamo Drafthouse Cinema is also presenting some fun free movies in the park. Go check out their website for more information.

You can also request for fun movies in your neighborhood park.

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If you live around Kyle, you can also enjoy movies at the lake.

Last night me and my mom went to Dittmar Park to enjoy “UP”. It’s one of my absolute favorite movie. My mom has never been outside to watch any movie. She spends most of her time watching cooking show and Bengali dramas. I thought it would be a fun expeirence for her. So we took our folding chairs and drove to dittmar park. It was very nice and we kind of regretted not bringing any snacks. There were free popcorn for us.IMG_0216

All we had to do is fill out one survery. There were good amount of people. Not a lot that you wont be able to see or hear and not too small that you feel awkward.1We went there before sunset and waited about 30 minutes before movie start. There were families, kids and couples. I wish the screen was a little bigger but still we were able to see from the very back.

11169823_858341084211432_5467489170092484564_nFew tips for people who are interested in going.

-Bring snakcs and foods for you and your kids.

-Bring water.

-Bring pillows and lots of blankets, it tends to get colder at night and if your kid fall asleep, they will have something to feel comfy.

-Make sure that you have insect repellent.

-Bring games and other things to make your kids busy. Kids tend to get sidetracked a lot so it will be easy to keep them content.

-If you have to get up a few times, sit on the side.

Even though we had to leave early, we had a great time and I plan on attending a few more movies in the park this summer. What about you? Are you going anywhere? Do you plan on attending any movies in the park?

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Gardening Log 1

Hi there! How’s going?

Right as I am writing this, the sky got into a crazy stormy fight with someone and apparently poke a hole on its belly and since then it’s just pouring down outside. Not such a good news for the tiny spinach plant we bought from Walmart. Anyway i haven’t wrote much and thought I should write an update. At first I thought I should do the whole garden and write all at once but then I realized, it’s a long process and given I forget stuff I should write it as I go. At the end I will create a post linking all the logs and update.

Our gardening process is going very slow. We both are really really broke at this moment and I am not sure if you remember from an old post that his house is right next to a huge jungle type area. The weeds and bushes are pretty tall and the backyard was the same way. I am 5′.25″ (I like to emphasize on the extra .25″ I have) and the bushes were my knee length. And the amount of bugs,spider,ants and all kind of insects lives in that backyard is enough to create a whole new continent for them. So our first step was to cut the grass and bushes. But we didn’t have a lawn mower and didn’t want to invest on one since it’s not our permanent house, it just seemed unnecessary. We didn’t want to wait so we rented a lawn mower from Home Depot. We had to put down 75$ deposit. And with renting fee, cleaning fee and everything we ended up paying $45.36.

Because it had rained the day before, the work wasn’t as smooth as we wanted. Next times we would probably call someone from Craigslist to cut the grass.

This is the before picture. As you can see the bushes are taller than the fence.

Lawn mower on action! We took a little break as we figured out right by the fire pit which is in the middle of the backyard a rabbit family was living there and one by one 3 bunny walked away during the process. We were extra careful about not hurting them and we felt bad as we destroyed their house. We had no idea they were living rent free there! But at least they are surrounded by other bushes where they can make a new house in no time.

After picture. Yeah it’s not very nice… And we weren’t able to cut the plants around the edges but we got a weed trimmer from Amazon.

We will let you know how that’s working for us.

Our biggest concern right now is destroying the weeds and the bugs. We don’t really want to put a lot of chemicals since we plan on doing an organic garden. This coming week we are going to make a trip to Lowes get some pesticide, hopefully dig out the garden and ¬†plant our seeds. If you know any healthy way to destroy weeds and the insects please let me know! So far we decided on jalape√Īos, lettuce, onions and spinach. Depending on the future we might grow other stuff. We are torn between doing a raised bed or just keep it as it is. Since we do not know how long clayton is going to be living in this house I can’t justify on spending so much money on raised bed garden. But we never know, I might change my mind. When we went to lowes last week to just look around…we found few things to mark the garden. We will make final decision this week but so far this one is our favorite

if you have any advice or tips or even best wishes, comment down below or shoot me a message!  I would really really appreciate that and maybe we can have a backyard picnic when the veggies are grown!

Till next time! Khoda Hafeez!

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Influenster 

Hello there!!

If you don’t know about influenster already you should immediately stop everything and listen. It’s a great site for social birds! You connect your social accounts with influenster and review different kind of products that you have used. You can earn badges and get free stuff. They randomly select people to get different kind of voxbox and to review the free products. I know when I say “randomly ” you probably raised an eyebrow but let me tell you as long you are active you will get something from them. In the past I have gotten Reese’s spread. This time I got carefree product and a campus voxbox which comes with many products.

            

What’s better than coming to home with a very well packaged box with free goodies