Category Archives: Guest Posts

A Couple of Gifts…

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Five years ago today,

Rob and I were married on Pensacola Beach.

Husband

We don’t usually give each other gifts, but enjoy a nice dinner out instead. However, this year, I just had to get him tickets to see this. Unfortunately, that show isn’t until October. So until then, you are just going to have to settle for Rob’s updated Top 10 Burger List.

Happy Anniversary to the man who makes me laugh every day…

even if I don’t want to!

Cheers~
Carrie

 

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Foodie Penpals in Reverse!

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I interrupt this Subscription Box Saturday to bring you

Foodie Penpals in Reverse!

This was my first month with Foodie Penpals where the person I shipped to shipped to me. It was so much fun getting to know Brandi! You can see what she sent me here. I asked Brandi, since she doesn’t have a blog, if she’d like to post about what she received. She happily obliged! {I love that she wrote this like a letter to me, too. 😉 }

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I opened my very first Foodie Pen Pal box! How absolutely fun.

Thanks Carrie for your amazing gifts!

The box itself was adorable.

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As packaging can sometimes make or break a gift, it was clear this one was packed with care and attention, giving more value to your thoughtful choices!

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Inside, was a handwritten note as well as a typed explanation for each item chosen! It was super fun opening the letter and reading about your choices for me! I love words. I love reading. I loved opening something “just for me.” Having 4 kids, being chauffeur, nurse, teacher, mommy, wife etc . . . limited the time I had to write such a nice letter to you! Please accept my chicken scratchin’ and read between the lines as much as possible! I really TRIED. But you put me to shame here. {Carrie’s Note: SO NOT TRUE! It was uniquely you and I loved it!} Just know, your words were much loved and appreciated!

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Now for the goodies!

Pop’d Kerns: I love crunchy snacks and this one is no exception! What made this extra special was that it is uniquely Minnesotan. I’ve been warned they are addicting!

Highlander Grog Coffee: Coffee is my favorite drink! I can’t wait!

Wild Rice Soup: This soup is distinctly Minnesotan . . . I can’t wait to get it warming on the stove on a cold, windy, Kansas day. Which will be soon!

Creole Seasoning: I told you I love spices and seasonings so this was such a fun addition! I’d never tried this particular mix . . . until I added it to a Mexican/Chicken style dinner the other night. It was fantastic! I loved the slight change in flavor!

Assorted Chocolates: No comment necessary. Except, YES! YES! YES! Mmmmmm.

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Thanks again, Carrie, for your yummy gifts! How Fun!

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I am so glad, Brandi, that you loved all your goodies! If you would like to participate in Foodie Penpals, please click here for more information.

Cheers~
Carrie

Paleo Penpal

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Yesterday was Foodie Penpal Reveal Day. I posted on the tasty package full of goodies that I received. However, the gal to whom I shipped doesn’t have a blog, so I offered to have her post what she received.

Before shopping and shipping I always ask if my recipient has any dietary restrictions and/or allergies and if there is anything they typically love or hate. This month, I learned that Brissa is a follower of the Paleo lifestyle. It was fun for me to learn more about the practice! I’ve also been following a few blogs lately written by Paleo followers and those giving Whole30 a try. I stole some of their favorites and ideas to send her. 😉

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Hello!

My wonderful April Foodie Pen Pal was Carrie from SeasonItAlready.com.

She wrote an awfully nice card with instructions on how to make some amazing spicy almonds!

In my goodie box I received: an assortment of teas, coconut milks (I am a Paleo lifestyler), organic tomatoes, some of her homemade spicy almonds, and coconut butter. Yum! I’ve been keeping my almonds in my tote and pop them out any time I need a snack! Thank you for this again, Carrie, it was thoughtful of you to learn something new for me in regards to Paleo! -Brissa ❤

Paleo PP

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You are welcome, Brissa!

Readers, are any of you following a Whole30 or Paleo regimen?

If so, what is your favorite compliant food?

Cheers~
Carrie

Top 10 Fries in the Twin Cities {A Guest List}

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*This List was updated on 2/26/14*

My husband is a burgers and fries guy. I guess that just happens when you are allergic to anything with fins or feathers. This year, I asked him to give me a list of his Top Ten Burgers and Fries throughout the Twin Cities metro. He gave me the lists separately, because very rarely will the fries and burgers both be extraordinary. They deserve to stand on their own. This post is the edition on fries, as you may have guessed from the clever title.

For me, when it comes to French fries, I can take ’em or leave ’em.

Let me rephrase that.

If the fries are there, I will eat them. And I will eat too many of them. But I don’t ever crave fries. I don’t say to myself, “Oh… I sooooo want some fries tonight.” But if I did {and maybe you do}, I’d want them to be the best stinkin’ fries ever.

I’d want them to be worth it.

While I’m working on losing weight, ordering something at a restaurant sans fries is the way I tend to go. If I’m feeling that rare “need” for fries, I will steal a few of Rob’s. {I find it much easier not to eat too many if the fries are not mine or if it wasn’t established up front that I’d be sharing them with someone.}

When I received back the list of Rob’s Top 10 Fries in the Twin Cities, I got this as the number one answer:

Pops for Champagne – Chicago

“Words cannot do them justice.  Firm outside, soft inside, brown buttery, boiled goodness.”

Um… I’m sorry, honey. We can’t just get in the car and go there for dinner. I know you loved them beyond anything you’ve probably ever eaten, but they just don’t count! Still, I guess you win because they made it into the blog post anyway!

So here are my husband’s Top 10 favorites {with his descriptions!} within dinner-driving-distance of those of us in the Minneapolis-St. Paul Metro area. If we’ve written a Restaurant Impression on the restaurant, I’ve linked to it. Feel free to add your comments if you have enjoyed {or didn’t enjoy} fries at any of these establishments.

Rob’s Top 10 Fries in the Twin Cities – 2/26/14

2/26/14 – To be fair, restaurants with an * indicated that we haven’t had these fries in the past year.

1 ) Red Stag Supperclub* Minneapolis | Great local potatoes and the olive oil/rosemary seasoning works wonderfully.

2) Burger JonesBurnsville | Served in a cute tin, and not a small order, these are wonderfully cooked fries.  A side of chipotle aioli doesn’t’ hurt.

3) Dakota Jazz Club & Restaurant*Minneapolis | Perfect pomme frites served with bearnaise.

4) Harry’s CafeLakeville | A multi-stepped fry, Harry’s Angela Fries are terrific with their mozzarella drippings. A side of ranch dressing (the only fries on my list benefitting from ranch) sets them off!

5) Barbette*Uptown/Minneapolis | Wow!  FRENCH fries.

6) Groveland TapSt. Paul | Parmesan Garlic Fries…yummy slender little spuds.

7) Mosaic CafeMinneapolis | If you would have told me that I would have enjoyed BAKED Rosemary & Garlic Fries, I would have laughed at you. But then I did. We couldn’t finish them, so we actually took these home and rebaked them. Not kidding.

8) Vincent* Minneapolis | Funny. A French restaurant with fries patterned after McDonald’s. These are quite tasty.  But, not quite as good IMO.

9) Relevé Champagne Lounge Minneapolis | 🙂

10) Cavé Vin*Minneapolis | Happy fun time shoe-strings.

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What makes the perfect French fry for you?

At which restaurant in your neck of the woods would we find your favorite fries?

Cheers~

Carrie & Rob

Running for Beginners (A Guest Post)

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As you all know, I have a hard time considering myself a runner. However, sometimes I forget that we have to start somewhere. As part of this year’s bucket list, I’d like you to join me!

When I first started to run, I read a lot of blogs by people who never thought they would be runners, just like me. They are a world of inspiration. That’s how I found Racheal! She’s graciously agreed to write a post on how you, too, can run. Thank you, Racheal, for taking the time to share your story with us!

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Hi Season It Already! readers.  I’m Racheal, and I blog over at Running with Racheal.

Like you, I love reading Carrie’s blog and drooling over her food reviews.  A few weeks ago, Carrie wrote a guest post on wine tasting for my blog, and I was so appreciative of her expertise.  I was excited when she asked me to return the favor as she enjoys her vacation and write about a topic I love – running for beginners.

You can be a runner.

Even though I don’t know you, I know that to be true.  How?  Because I have the athleticism of a sloth combined with the speed of a turtle and if I can do it, anyone can do it.

No one hated running more than me.  I used to have nightmares about running at basketball practice during high school.  I despised the cute little cross country girls with their bouncy ponytails, short shorts, and sculpted legs.  I knew I couldn’t be like them, so I assumed I couldn’t be a runner.

Then, I started college and moved into a dorm with a track right next door.  One day, I decided to go jog 1/3 of a mile.  I don’t know what motivated me that day (I am betting it had something to do with being surrounded by beautiful blond sorority girls), but I am so thankful for it.  That day changed my life. Fast forward a few years later, I finished my first half marathon.

I didn’t follow any sort of schedule or plan, I just slowly added distance or time as I felt comfortable – 5 minutes here, a half a mile there.  It took me over a year to build up to a 5K, but I did.  However, if I knew then what I know now, I would have executed the Couch to 5K program.  I have seen so many people become kick-butt runners with this schedule and go on to bust out half marathons and sometimes more.

Why should you start running?  The list doesn’t stop but here are my Top 5 reasons:

  • The rush of endorphins – there really is nothing like the feeling of after giving it all you’ve got.
  • Having some alone me-time (I know for some of us that is pretty rare)
  • Having the ability to blow off steam another way besides punching someone in the face.  This has come to my rescue more than once.
  • Improving my health, particularly my cardiovascular health.  Lower blood pressure, lower resting heart rate, etc.
  • Being able to eat more calories ( I usually prefer those in the form of ice cream)

There are times when I take breaks (like right now during my third trimester of pregnancy) but I still consider myself a runner and fully plan to jump back on the treadmill after I recover from my delivery.

My dream is to run a full marathon.  Why don’t you join me?