Lemon Orzo Salad

Just a quickie post to recommend a dish I made last night. Thank you Pinterest!

 

Lemon Orzo Salad with Asparagus and Tomatoes

I would say it was quite delicious, however could have used a bit more of a kick. Even just a teaspoon more pepper probably would have zested it up enough!

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(picture from original site where recipe can be found: http://www.abigmouthful.com/lemon-orzo-salad-with-asparagus-and-tomatoes/ )

 

Lemon Orzo Salad with Asparagus and Tomatoes

12 oz. orzo
1 bunch fresh asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
1 lemon, zested and juiced
4 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tbs. fresh parsley, minced
Kosher salt
Fresh ground pepper
Grated Parmigiano Reggiano*

Bring 2 large pots of water to boil.  Add a big pinch of salt in each.

To one pot, add asparagus and blanch, about 2 to 3 minutes, depending on the thickness of your asparagus.  Place blanched asparagus in a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking and keep them green.

To the second pot, add the orzo.  Cook per package instructions.  When tender, drain and place in a large bowl.  Add blanched asparagus and tomato halves.

Mix olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper in a small bowl.  Stir into orzo and vegetables.  Stir in parsley and grated Parmigiano Reggiano.

This can be served warm, room temperature or cold.

*Note:  If you want to keep this salad vegan, leave out the Parmigiano Reggiano.

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Update

For those of you who only read the posts I write, I want to encourage you to check out the other pages of my blog (especially because I’ve recently updated them!)

Learn a little bit more about me….

Check out a month-by-month montage of my life….

Oogle at my Instagram pics — oooh, pretty filters…..

And don’t forget to check me out on Facebook (thumbs up for people who “like” meganeilers.wordpress.com )….

and Twitter – tweet tweet….. 

last, but definitely not least: join the other 300+ Pinners who follow me! (it’s what all the cool kids are doing!)….

Fun Finds | Punjammies

Hello blogosphere — hope you’ve all been well! Apologies for the delayed blog post, my parents have been in town and we’ve been having too much fun for me to blog (I know….excuses, excuses).

Tonight, I came across some cute pajama bottoms on Pinterest. Instead of your average shopping site, it lead me to a very interesting story!

You see, these were no ordinary pajamas they were “Punjammies” — the product of a awareness movement called the International Princess Project.  The project was started by Shannon Keith who travelled to India in 2005 and witnessed the all-too-common act of human trafficking.

In an effort to help women and children get out of the terrible conditions to become successful, brave, and confident, Shannon has been helping to “establish self-sustaining enterprises in partnership with indigenous organizations that provide for physical, emotional and spiritual needs of women formerly enslaved in prostitution; AND advocate for women enslaved in prostitution around the world” (from the International Princess Project mission statement).

Now those of you who have visited meganeilers.wordpress.com before know that I am by no means a blogger who regularly posts controversial, bold, or upsetting topics that may concern or offend anyone. That’s just not my style. However, I felt that this was something that was worth sharing with all of you wonderful readers.

Even if you are not interested in buying a pair of PJs, I would highly suggest watching the video on the International Princess Project website.

If you are reading this, take a moment and think of how fortunate you are to have a woman (or even a little girl) in your life who is free, happy, and confident. Let her know how happy you are to have her in your life because if she was born into a different part of the world her whole life could be radically different, and as a result your life would be too.

Pin-spiration

College is over, and I am actively searching for a job.  However, there is a lot of free time in between job apps.

What do I do when I need a break from typing in the same info all day long? I turn to Pinterest, of course!

Unfortunately that means I’m overloaded with decorating and DIY craft ideas for the apartment I don’t have yet.

So, while I daydream of trendy lofts and cutsie studios I thought I’d share some of my favorite ideas and get some input from you (my awesome readers) about projects you’ve done to spruce up your digs on a budget.

Don’t forget to follow me on Pinterest!

Here are four different projects for four different rooms:

for the bathroom…

Ikea spice racks as hair/make-up holders — what a genius way to make up for a lack of counter space (something all apartments tend to struggle with)

for any room…

Painted vases make for great pops of color in a room. Buy cheap vases and give them a fresh re-do with a coat of paint — SOO easy, can’t wait to do this!

for the bedroom….

another super easy project. create an entirely new pillow with just a little bit of fabric with the awesome knot they show on this blog. fantastic way to change the feel of your bed or couch with minimal effort!

for the living room….

striped drapes are a great way to make up for plain apartment walls. this project doesn’t seem too hard — only a few items and a little imagination will turn plain drapes into designer-inspired ones

a bloggers confession

I have a confession. (this is stolen from my bff, who starts out many conversations with those four words)

I feel pathetic and a little ashamed.

Here I call myself a blogger, but what have I been doing: not. blogging. (oh the horror!!!)

I feel uninspired. My life is consumed with far too many other things like work, school, upcoming graduation (52 days!!!!), and trying to find a job, to be focused on the exciting things in life. Sad, I know. Soon enough – hopefully – the stress will lessen and I can go back to sunshine, music, and enjoying the little things in life!

Anywhoo..

What’s a blogger to do when they’re lacking creativity and inspiration? Log onto Pinterest, of course.

Unfortunately, I am still left without any obsessions/fun finds/recipes/ etc.. that really get me in the blogging mood. BUT….here are a few fun ones that hopefully get your inspiration juices flowing, even though mine are stuck somewhere between job apps and research papers.



Social Media Excitement

Anyone out there who doesn’t believe that social media is the most awsome-ist wonderful-ist addition to our lives is absolutely crazy.  That is a fact.  Okay okay, maybe you don’t think so, but let me tell you I am OBSESSED.

Yes I understand it is a problem, but good things CAN come from it!  So any of you who follow my blog are probably aware that I am Sicilian (for those of you who need help with geography, that is the island that Italy’s “boot” is kicking), which means of course that I am a complete “foodie” (a.k.a. the nice way of saying I’m seriously addicted to food).

Combine my love of social media and food and this is what you get:

That’s right, I got a response from Giada DeLaurentiis herself!  For any of you who aren’t already following me on twitter (*cough* click the link *cough*) and didn’t see the link to the recipe, you can check it out here.  Sorry I was unable to post a picture, it was gone too fast! (yes, it was that good)

Anywhoo, how awesome is that? I felt so special that of the three or four people she responded to that evening, she chose me!!  I know that lots of celebs respond on twitter, but it is still AWESOME!!

Keep your eyes posted on the blog, I am going to try and post some cool stuff this week (in between packing boxes and struggling to drive a U-Haul).

In the comments section let me know if you have any cool celeb encounters (on social media sites or in person) or if you have tried any really awesome recipes lately.  (Also, if you don’t know how crazed I am about Pinterest and the cornucopia of recipes on there, you can check that out here :) )

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