Tag Archives: noah and the whale

>toe tappin’ playlist



Since deer season is in full-swing here in PA, Nutmeg finally got something from Santa to wear when we go for our walks in the woods (outside of Pittsburgh) so that she won’t get mistakened for a deer.

It kind of makes her look like a superhero — which is totally ok.  We always say she’s out to fight crime, anyways.

I hope everyone took the time to enjoy the holidays.  Since I went to Bret’s house this year for Christmas, I didn’t have much access to the internet.  Once we were done there, we went skiing which meant double-dosage of no internet access…

… which means I owe you all a playlist!

I wanted to get some upbeat / toe tapping songs together.  It’s been gorgeous outside here in Pittsburgh.  Unfortunately, all the snow has managed to disappear.  However, last year Snowmaggedon didn’t hit until late January/early February, so that doesn’t mean the snow is over (which we all snow it isn’t).

Happy 2011 everyone.  Since #11 is my lucky number, I’m hoping that this year will be a good year.

* crosses fingers *


>eggplant lasagna + playlist



I was looking through my past blog posts, and the blog post that received the most visits was the one I posted a recipe along with a playlist. Moving forward, I’m going to try to post my baking/cooking playlist that I listen to whenever I’m making something special in the kitchen!

I wanted to try to keep it as healthy as possible.  Plus, this recipe calls for only 6 ingredients!  So, click play on the playlist at the bottom, and enjoy the recipe below.  Keep in mind, 1.)  When I’m baking/cooking, I need all types of music to keep me entertained and 2.) I altered the recipe to meet my taste preferences (you can also do the same):

Eggplant Parmesan
1 large eggplant, sliced thinly (about 1/4″)
2 cups of broccoli (The recipe calls for mushrooms, so you can use them also)
1 cup diced onions
1 cup ricotta cheese (The recipe calls for cottage cheese, but what’s lasagna without ricotta?)
1 bag (8 oz.) shredded mozzarella (I used skim) 
1 jar of spaghetti sauce

    • 1.  Using a 9×13 pan, add a thin layer of sauce to the bottom of the pan.

    2.  Add first layer of eggplant. (

    As you layer all the veggies add any desired spices such as salt and pepper.  I added S&P, red pepper, and basil).

  • 3.  Add first layer of eggplant.  Then, m

    ix diced onions and ricotta cheese together and spread over eggplant. 

  • 4.  Add another layer of sauce, a layer of shredded cheese, and then the second layer of eggplant.

  • 5.  Add a layer of broccoli, cover with a layer of sauce and a layer of shredded cheese.

  • 6.  Add final layer of eggplant, and cover with remaining cheese.

  • 7.  Cover tightly with foil and bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 10 minutes to brown top.

I let it sit for about 5-8 minutes before cutting it.  I’m always nervous about making vegetarian dishes for dinner because Bret ALWAYS wants to have some kind of protein/meat.  However, Bret loved this dish and wanted seconds (YAY!), but I gave him a salad instead (with the promise of making something for dessert… which I didn’t make).

It really was a yummy dinner, and I highly recommend making the recipe! 🙂

>so many ways to stay alive



  A few weeks ago, Bret took me to Lake Chautauqua for my birthday. The weekend was a nice vacation and break to get away and clear our heads for a few days. We didn’t really have a plan for the weekend other than to relax and enjoy one another’s company. Highlights of the weekend included: food poisoning, food poisoning recovery, wine jelly, Oscar the dog, visits to over 10 wineries, picking peaches, spontaneous drives to Fredonia, and my most favorite — driving around in pitch darkness with all the windows down listening to music while smelling grapes in the air.  It was our “Pink Moon” moment ala VW-style:

So the music.  We had the shuffle going on our iPod for quite awhile, but eventually kept going back to the same few songs over and over again.  Bret’s favorite song for the trip was Noah and the Whale’s “2 Atoms in a Molecule.”  It took me a little while to get on the Noah and the Whale boat because some of their songs are very reminiscent of songs Kermit might sing……… With that being said, leader singer Charlie Fink’s vocals are so unusual which makes me want to listen to them.  Their quirky, upbeat tunes were just what Bret and I needed to keep us going for the weekend. My favorite tune for the weekend was Bombadil’s “So Many Ways to Die” (Daytrotter version).  Yes, the title of this song sounds morbid.  However, if you listen to it, the opening of the song start with: “so many ways to die // so many ways to stay alive.”  as you listen to the rest of the song, you can listen as they tell you how to stay “alive” — to stay happy!  I love this song and it has such a good meaning for those who are tryin to “figure it out (AKA myself).