- See more at: http://blogtimenow.com/blogging/automatically-redirect-blogger-blog-another-blog-website/#sthash.TPW7o39F.dpuf Lishy Lishy: December 2012

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Holiday Cake Pops

When I saw that Starbucks had a cake pop gift kit for sale, I knew that my sister would be thrilled.  I'm convinced that not many others make special trips to Starbucks just for the cake pops. With a massive amount of Christmas entertaining over with, our kitchen was ready for another new adventure. 

'Tis the Season

This year was a Christmas of entertaining. The annual Christmas Eve bash was accompanied by the traditional Christmas Day gathering for the very first time.  Family, giving, Greek food, Italian food, and the Mele family cake and coffee combo, what could be better?!
Grand Entrance

Two trees, one roof

Sarris Candy makes everything feel festive
Tree Trimmings

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Pasta Lacqua

My mom absolutely loved 'Pasta Lacqua' when she first tried it at Angelo's Italian Restaurant in Washington, PA.  She was thrilled to see the recipe in the local newspaper, and the dish has been a Johns family staple ever since. With chicken broth, fresh tomatoes, and the slightest hint of white wine, this dish is spectacular, and is one of my favorites to cook.


Sunday, December 2, 2012

Breakfast Quinoa

Depending on its preparation, I would say that Quinoa is an acquired taste.  I like it as a side dish for dinner, but a lot of people are turned off by the unique taste and texture. With this breakfast quinoa, however, I really don't think there is anything not to love about this hot cereal lookalike! The brown sugar, cinnamon and blueberries are great additions.  I found the recipe at http://www.marthastewart.com/314453/breakfast-quinoa, but I did tweak it a little.  I used almond milk and I have also used coconut milk in the past.  If using the coconut milk, I would recommend less brown sugar.  I also advise NOT covering it.  It only took a few boiling over incidents for me to just skip that step...

  • 2 cups whole or low-fat milk, plus more for serving
  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 3 tablespoons light-brown sugar, plus more for serving
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon, plus more for serving
  • 1 cup (1/2 pint) fresh blueberries, plus more for serving


  1. Bring milk to a boil in a small saucepan. Add quinoa, and return to a boil. Reduce heat to low, and simmer, covered, until three-quarters of the milk has been absorbed, about 15 minutes.
  2. Stir in sugar and cinnamon. Cook, covered, until almost all the milk has been absorbed, about 8 minutes. Stir in blueberries, and cook for 30 seconds. Serve with additional milk, sugar, cinnamon, and blueberries.

Countdown to Lugano - 39 Days

With 39 days left until I leave for Lugano, Switzerland to start my 4 month study abroad experience, it is officially crunch time.

- Kate Spade Passport cover - CHECK
- Calvin Klein Parka - CHECK
- Comfy flats for city exploring - CHECK
- Vintage Australian leather cross body bag straight from my moms closet- CHECK
- Updated Camera aka the Nikon P510 - CHECK
- Flight departing Pittsburgh and arriving in DC on January 10th and Returning on April 26th - CHECK
- Round-trip flight from DC to Zurich, Switzerland - CHECK

- Hostel reservations to experience Carnavale in Venice - Work in Progress
 - School textbooks (can't forget about the studying aspect of studying abroad) - Work in Progress
 - Hiking backpack that will double as a carry-on  - Work in Progress
- City Maps - Work in Progress
- Universal travel adapter - Work in Progress

- A prepared, yet spontaneous and adventurous state of mind - To be determined.....
- A fluency in Italian  - Not holding my breath...

On my radar: KSNY Idiom Pendants

Why do I love Kate Spade? Because the brand is witty and playful, yet strong, and these idiom pendants are no exception. My favorite idioms of the bunch? Creme De La Creme and Hello Sunshine. 

Director Duties

After toying with the concept for a while, Tim Austin, videographer-extraordinaire, was able to bring my idea   for the 9400+ Stories promo video to life. I love his choice of background music, and the video was a great intro for our "Common Grounds" event that had a 9400+ Stories theme.

November Adventures

I started off the month with a wonderful trip to the University of Virginia in Charlottesville with the club tennis team.  UVA may not have the best reputation to Tech students, but I was immediately impressed when I noticed that an Anthropologie was located just minutes from campus.  It was a really cool town, with surprisingly great shopping and restaurants.  My personal favorites were Little John's and Bodo's Bagels. 

Once back in Pittsburgh for Thanksgiving break, GC and I ventured to our favorite courts for some tennis.  I couldn't help but snap a picture of the gorgeous sunset we enjoyed on our way to the car.
We also ventured downtown for light-up night.  Looks beautiful from this picture, but dealing with the crowds was not so serene.  

My sister's soccer team traveled to Hershey, PA once again to compete in the PIAA state finals.  I enjoyed the surroundings while nervously watching her in goal. They won, and she is now a sophomore, 2-time state champ.  

GC and I had the grand idea to make something sweet and special for our one year.  We bought ingredients to make brownie cake pops without realizing we were in need of eggs.  We rolled with it, and learned the hard way to never make brownies without eggs and to always spray the pan before baking.  Yes, they look awesome in this picture, but believe me when I say that they could have broken glass.  

The day after Thanksgiving was the day that it became socially acceptable for me to break out my favorite Christmas mug.  

After returning to Blacksburg, I helped to pull off an event, hosted by the Officer for Diversity and Inclusion, titled "Common Grounds." My favorite part of setting up? Creating this cute cupcake display. 

S'mores coffee creamer. Need I say more?