It's fall here in DC and suddenly I find myself looking around in confusion wondering where summer went. I have stopped travelling long enough to have all luggage and bags unpacked. I have finally tackled the laundry and unpacked all the moving boxes. The next wedding I have to plan into my life isn't until New Years Eve. I look back at what transpired this summer and in my head all I see is a chaotic blur of equal parts fun/fab friends/sunshine/adventures/many lovely Weddings that all choked me up.... and stress/moving boxes/airplanes/hospitals/floods/hectic-ness.
I am both sad it's wrapped up and amazed I survived. Torn between savoring every photo and moment and trying to block it out. In the bad sides, the only thing missing was the plague of locusts. On the good, the only thing missing was more time to savor each blessing that came my way. Of which there were/are many. Or more time at the beach with my family.
Definitely that last one but, even if I had spent my whole summer with my family at the beach, I am sure I would still be grumbling that it wasn't enough time. I am a very lucky, very blissed out, gal when it comes to the blessings and people in my life. Especially my family. I only spent one week going around Chicago/Wheaton/Wisconsin this summer with my family and it was definitely not enough time.
The point of all that rant I suppose was these 3 things.
1) I am sorry I vanished at points throughout the summer and then again for end of August/Apparently ALL of September. We'll just pretend September didn't happen. It seems like it was on fast forward anyway, I'm sure you all understand.
2) I love you all for being so patient with me and understanding of the few inches away I was from cracking under stress and grasping at the summer fun moments while I could. I know you all never ask anything of me as a writer/foodie/blogger but, the few posts I promise you need to be provided. The lack of consistency is my fault and I apologize. I know I come off as foodie/flake but! I am trying.
3) While at our lakehouse though, my mom organized one of the coolest meals I have ever seen. Pioneer Woman did a post on these recently too, (although hers were more involved and called "pie" which I don't get). They are a great, summer, meal that I look forward to for my next (hopefully calmer) sunshine season.
What's that you say? Just an ordinary Fritos bag. But why is there a fork sticking out of it?
A Doritos bag? That's still not food, Meaghan! You've been gone from blogging too long and don't know what you're posting about!
Okay, I'll stop writing in the 3rd person/being weird. What appears to be an ordinary bag of chips is no such thing when you peek inside! Ta-da!
The insides reveal something akin with a taco salad but wrapped up inside individual chip bags! Basic idea: make all the fixin's for tacos but neglect to get tortillas or hard shells. Simply set up a taco bar for you/your friends/your fam and let people dump taco ingredients into bags of gently crushed chips.
These pics are from the Walkin' Taco bar my mom set up at the lakehouse from 4th of July weekend. Yes, that's how long it has taken me to upload the pictures and write a post. I've already felt guilty enough, ok! Give me a break.
The lovely thing about Walkin' Tacos is that you can make the meal disposable for easy clean up without feeling like a giant waster for using paper plates and napkins. It's just using the chip bags as dishes! Our lake is usually filled with 30-40 of our friends and family (mostly family, yes we are Irish Catholic) so meals like this one keep my mom sane. We chopped up some watermelon, cooked about 4 lbs of taco meat, and set up the taco bar for everyone's enjoyment.
Trust me/look at how good that looks. No one was complaining. I tried Doritos and Fritos (2 bags, but this is a safe place, no judgement) and both of them were amazzzzzing. Want to give it a try with chicken instead of beef and Ranch Doritos sometime soon too. Yummmmmmmm.
Alright, that's enough of that now. I am sure you will all be anxious to make Walkin' Tacos so I can stop talking about their amazing factors and we can talk about my giveaway! That's the good part, after all!
Despite my own guilt/reservations about my skills as a blogger, for some reason Joy Bauer (for those of you who don't know, that's the nutritionist from The Today Show!) and her people think I am doing something right because they offered me a chance to promote her new cookbook on my page! I was so excited, I probably spent the most spastic response back they've received to date and so the cycle of confusing e-mails began! Ha, eventually though it was accomplished that they would send me Joy's book Food Cures and I could give a copy away to my readers after a review.
My readers being you guys.
So get excited! I am pretty much excited FOR you! This book is INSANELY cool- it has all kinds of recipes to create a flexible diet to any stomach/health issues (lactose, gluten free, etc) as well as an index of foods to help with certain nutrional balances, stomach/health symptoms, and descriptions of the overall science behind food working within your body.
A serious hat's off to Joy and her team for doing all this research and creating such a great book. To whoever wins this, it's a great treasure in the kitchen. I really want my own now that I have been sneaking peeks into the reader copy!
To enter for a chance to win the giveaway, you have to "like" my page on Facebook if you haven't already (click here or on the icon in the sidebar) and leave a comment on the page about either your interest in the science of food or your personal need for more nutritional balance! Make sure to leave your full name (if it's not on your facebook account) by 12 PM EST on Wednesday, October 12th and later that night for my birthday post (yes, 10/12 is my bday! To quote Hannibal, I love it when a plan comes together), I will reveal the winner! I'll then ask you to e-mail me and we can work out the minor details like where you'd like me to ship you Joy's book.
Best of luck to all of my readers! If you don't have FB or you have questions regarding the contest, write me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org and I can enter you that way or answer whatever I've neglected to explain. I am sure I am forgetting something, this is why I shouldn't be allowed to drink Diet Coke. Hyperactive blog posts are always my most scattered/least informative.
I look forward to hearing from all of you guys and can't wait to reveal the winner! Good luck to all of you and SO EXCITED to be back in the blogging game!
Thank you again to you readers who continued to support me, write me, and believe in me through my absence as well as a big thanks to Joy Bauer and her team for believing my blog to be a good spring board for their amazing cookbook and supporting me throughout this process.
Giveaway #1! Here we go :)