Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Recipe: Greek Style Chicken Pasta

So I know this isn't makeup related, but I wanted to post one of my favorite recipes.  This is something my husband originally made for me, so I have no idea where he got the recipe (we've kind of modified it over the years anyways).  This is seriously one of our favorite meals and, unlike our other favorites, it truly takes about 30 minutes to make, start to finish.  It's also a great meal for two as we can pretty much finish this with no leftovers.  I also normally have enough of the ingredients left to make this another time (the sun-dried tomatoes normally last through several times).  If you need to make this for more than 2-3 people, just adjust the recipe slightly.
  • Thin-cut chicken breast strips 
  • Olive oil
  • Minced garlic
  • Artichoke hearts
  • Sun dried tomatoes (sliced julienne)
  • Feta cheese
  • Heavy whipping cream
  • Fettuccine
  • Seasoning (salt and pepper are fine)

1)  Prepare fettuccine per directions on box.  I just like to go ahead and start this now so that the noodles are done by the time I need them.  
2)  Heat olive oil (a few tablespoons) in a pan while you season chicken breasts.  My favorite seasoning for everything is Camp Mix - I purchase it at a specialty meat store here in town, but I'm sure you can get it elsewhere.  I just love it because it basically has every ingredient I would use to season most things combined into one bottle.  I use it all the time.  But use whatever you have - salt & pepper will do just fine.

3) Cook chicken in pan until thoroughly cooked and golden brown.  About 8-10 minutes.  I normally just buy chicken strips from Bi-Lo since they are always on sale, but you can just slice 1-2 chicken breasts yourself.  I use a little under a pound of chicken for this.
4) When the chicken is cooked, I like to cut it into smaller pieces.  Then add a tablespoon of minced garlic, artichokes and a small handful of sun-dried tomatoes.  For the artichokes, I usually use all of a small jar/can (7-8 oz) or half of a larger jar/car.  Saute for about 2-3 minutes.
5) Add about a cup of heavy cream and 1/2 a cup of feta cheese.  Let this boil, then simmer for about 3 minutes, the add more cream and cheese to taste.  I normally end up using around 1 1/2 cups of cream and 3/4 cups of feta cheese at this point.

6) Add cooked and drained pasta to the pan.  Mix until sauce covers all of the pasta and chicken is dispersed evenly.  Add about 1/4 cup of feta cheese right before serving.
7) Enjoy!  I like to slice up some french bread and throw it in the broiler with some butter for a minute or two, but that's up to you.  A quick and delicious meal for two!!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Best YouTube Videos of the Week 9/29/12

Crystalis007 - September Favorites!
I always lover her product review videos, and this favorites video gives a lot of great products for all and a really nice variety.  It's like getting several mini-reviews in one video.  Also, there's a good mix of high and low end products to choose from.

Pixiwoo - Sparkling Eyes & Bold Red Lips
This is an awesome tutorial - the look is actually very simple.  I tried this look out on Thursday for work and got so many complements!!  Obviously, I improvised on the products used, but the look came out great.  This was quick and easy to achieve.

The Makeup Chair - Contour and Highlight Face, Cheeks, Nose & Eyes
Contouring and highlighting properly is probably one of the most difficult part of the makeup process, but when done well, it has the biggest payoff.  Sineady Cady of The Makeup Chair makes it so simple - her explanation and tutorial is really easy to follow.  The proof is in the before and after photos!

ItsJudyTime - New ELF Cosmetics Haul + Swatches!
I love me a haul video and this is a great one.  Not only does it feature products that are very affordable, but she actually opens the box and each product on camera, giving her initial reaction to each item.  It's not quite a review, but it a good first look at a number of items.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Fall Hall - Beauty & Fashion

I've been doing quite a bit of shopping lately, getting into the fall spirit. 

Ulta is having a 40% off sale on NYX cosmetics.  In addition, I printed off a $3.50 off $10 coupon online and had $3.00 in rewards to use.  So I ended up getting about $40 worth of make up for around $13.  Not a bad day.

I purchased 2 of the powder blushes in Desert Rose (right) and Dusty Rose (left).  Desert Rose is a beautiful deep rose shade with a bit of an orange undertone. The photos here do not do it justice.  Dusty Rose is just a very light, natural pink with a slight plum undertone. 

I also got two lip glosses - a Mega Shine Lip Gloss in Sponge Cake (left), which is an amazing, sparkly, neutral color.  Not nude, but it's a color that would go with anything.  I love it.  The second gloss is an Xtreme Lip Creme in Nude Peach Fuzz (right).  I feel like it is a little more pink that I was looking for, so I may exchange it for something different.

To conclude my NYX makeup haul, I got two of the Round Lipsticks - one in B52 (right), which is a lovely  mauve-ish color, and one in Violet Ray (left), a nice, dark plum.  So far, I really like these - the colors are great and they have a nice texture.

I picked up a few new things at Banana Republic when they were having a 40% off sale.  I love me some sales.  I got an elbow patch sweater, a striped sweater with buttons in the back, a semi-casual shirt, an awesome pair of dark, dark skinny jeans & 2 pairs of tights.  I love wearing tights with skirts and boots in the winter, and these patterns are adorable.

I LOVE these new nail polishes from Sinful Colors (my favorite drugstore brand).  I got these from Walgreen's for $1 each (normally $2).  None of the four have shimmer at all and are pretty, muted fall colors.  In addition to the colors here, I also purchased NYC's Matte Me Crazy! Mattifying Top Coat.  
Left to Right:  Nirvana (taupe brown), Rainstorm (dark, not navy, blue) & Slate (medium grey), & Vacation Time (pink-y mauve)
I like to dye my hair a little darker in the fall since it is normally lighter from the sun in summer.  I've purchased L'Oreal Healthy Look Creme Gloss Color in Dark Brown.  I'll post a review once I've used it.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Face of the Day 9/23/12

I wanted to create a very fall look today since it was slightly cooler (75). I went with an orange-y bronze eye and plum cheeks and lips.

Products Used


  • Smashbox Photo Finish foundation primer
  • Neutrogena SkinClearing foundation in nude
  • Maybelline Cover Stick concealer in fair
  • Neutrogena healthy skin pressed powder in light
  • Benefit Hoola bronzer
  • Maybelline Dream Bouncy blush in Plum Wine
  • Hard Candy So Baked Bronzer in tiki (highlight)
  • Smashbox Photo Finish lid primer
  • Smashbox Click You're It palette:
          Lid - Color 9 (burnt orange, shimmer)
          Crease - Color 14 (bronze, shimmer)
          Brow bone - Color 4 (lt. peach, matte)
          Outer V - Color 19 (brown cream liner)
          Inner Corner - Color 20 (gold cream liner)
  • Maybelline Unstoppable eyeliner in onyx (water line)
  • Maybelline Lash Discovery mascara in Very Black
  • The Balm Cheater! mascara
  • Maybelline Master Shape eyebrow pencil in soft brown
  • Pixi Lip & Line in Bare Berry
  • NYC Liquid Lipshine in Midtown Mulberry

I actually picked up the Smashbox Click You're It palette at Nordstrom Rack last week for just $23.  I think it originally retailed for $50 - awesome deal alert! It was a Christmas release, but I think it is perfect for fall.  I'm loving the texture of the shadows (as with all Smashbox shadows) and the cream eyeliners are great.  I'm still trying out the premier that came with it - it has a texture similar to Urban Decay Primer Potion, but the formula is a bit thicker.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Makeup, Maybe?

This time last year, I owned about 10 makeup products (give or take a few lip glosses).  I now own a couple of hundred makeup products.  Makeup has become my hobby.  A small obsession, if you will.  I prefer the term "creative outlet." 

What has brought about this sudden, compulsive need to buy and wear makeup?  Trying all the newest products and trends?  I blame my husband.  After all, it was his idea and blaming him makes it a lot easier to justify the ridiculous amount of money I'm spending on myself.  

Back in high school, I spent about 2 hours getting ready every day.  I loved picking the perfect outfit and making sure my hair and makeup were flawless. But by my second week of college, sleep became my number one priority and I no longer cared what I looked like.  I also because incredibly cheap and makeup was just not my top priority.  Unlike food or toilet paper.

It got to the point where I wouldn't get up more than 10 minutes ahead of needing to leave the house.  I was perfectly happy with this plan (I love sleep) until I entered the professional workforce and stepped up my wardrobe (a slippery slope, I say).  My "just out of bed" face didn't really match my awesome power suits.

My husband noticed.  He begged me to spend more time on myself.  His argument was that no one would notice me or take me seriously at work while I continued to look like a skinny rodent in a nice dress (I'm taking some liberties with his phrasing).  My argument was that makeup is expensive and unnecessary.

I'm not sure how or when I finally gave in.  I started reading fashion magazines.  I discovered YouTube tutorials and beauty blogs.  Slowly, I started purchasing items I had read about or seen used in a video. 

And here we are today.  I am a full-blown makeup addict.  None of my friends or coworkers are really into makeup and I need an outlet for my thoughts and opinions.  I'm not brave enough for YouTube.  This is a little project for myself - I really don't expect anyone to read this.  So if you do find yourself on my humble blog, thank you.