1) Vanilla Almond Tea from Republic of Teas. If you see me at subbing at school in the morning with my steaming green travel mug, this is most likely what I am sipping. If I have a chance to run the couple of blocks home during the day, I will probably brew another mug to get me through the remainder of my classes. This is my mojo.
2) Dirt Devil Simpli-Stik Bagless Stick Vacuum. We live with 3 lovable dogs. 3 lovable, long-haired dogs. 3 loveable, shedding, long-haired dogs. If I fail to clean just one day, we have Texas-sized dust bunnies of dog hair in every corner of every room. This simple stick vacuum has been my savior. It isn’t much more than a dust buster on wheels, but it is lightweight and compact enough to store just steps away from my kitchen on our back stairs. It has reasonably good suction to corral those wads of floating dog hair and whatever leaves, dirt, and small twigs are pulled in through the puppy door. The attachments allow me to clean tight corners. When it gets full, I just dump the bagless canister and start over. I do wish it had a brush for rugs or upholstery, but the majority of our home is hardwood. This gem makes dog hair suck just a little less.
3) Seared Scallops with White Beans and Spinach. In our house, we big puffy heart love perfectly seared scallops. The trick is to make sure the seafood is really patted dry and the pan is very hot. I always use my cast iron for the best sear.
(adapted from Cooking Light)
1 1/2 pounds sea scallops, patted dry
1 cup onion, chopped
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup dry white wine (I use Savignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio.)
1 cup chicken broth
1 (19-ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
4 cups fresh baby spinach
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
Season scallops with salt.
When pan is sizzling hot, add scallops.
Cook 2 minutes on each side.
Remove scallops from pan and keep warm.
Add a little more oil to the pan and sauté onion.
Add pepper flakes and garlic and cook just until garlic is fragrant.
Immediately stir in wine; cook for 1 minute or until most of the liquid has evaporated.
Stir in broth and beans; cook until heated through.
Add the spinach and cook until wilted.
Serve beans and spinach topped with seared scallops and with crusty bread on the side to dip into the brothy beans. (Serves 4)