Wednesday, February 29, 2012

What My Husband Cooks: Hamburgers


Yesterday morning I bit into a banana, put it down, and said, "I want a hamburger."
Mr. Branflake replied, "Then let's make you a hamburger!"
He then went to the store, bought fixings for hamburgers, and got to grilling.
Oh, the life of a student has wonderful perks, 
i.e., making meals for your spouse in the middle of the day.



Like I said before, Mr. Branflake's meals are fairly basic.
Although I love all things gourmet, sometimes you just need a basic all American burger in your life.
Nothing complicated. 
Just simple toppings (lettuce, tomato, onions, ketchup, and mayo), cheese, and a nicely toasted bun.




But you gotta add curly fries.
A burger without fries is just a sin, plain and simple.


And do not get me started on a guy I dated who didn't like ketchup with his fries.
After that incident I knew we were not meant to be.



Thanks, Mr. Branflake!
You sure know how to keep a woman happy!
photos by me.
food by Mr. Branflake
table by Ikea. GRRR!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Eating Healthy: Bread Salad, Hummus, and Savory Bread Pudding

Despite what my twitter, facebook, pinterest, and blog posts say, I do eat healthy.
It's just that to me healthy foods aren't as fun to talk about.
Want to talk three bean salad? 
Eh.
Oh, boy! Yes!

Besides, reading about a dancer who eats celery sticks for dinner just sounds bad.
Although, with a table spoon or two of peanut butter it is one of my favorite dinners.


I digress (a lot)....

Mr. Branflake loves all salad that doesn't include lettuce.
I have since perfected the bread salad, or panzanella for Italian lovers out there.
Lately, I've been eating this bread salad with a side of cucumbers and hummus.

It was my healthy answer to yesterday's post.





 Bread Salad:
1 loaf crusty bread, cubed
1 bunch basil, chopped
1/2 cup thinly sliced red onions
1/2 cup feta
1 pint cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1 bunch asparagus, quartered 
(or any veggies, really)
salt and pepper
a nice drizzling of olive oil
a healthy dose of Balsamic vinegar

_______________________________

 What's nice about this bread salad is if you find yourself with leftovers you can totally make it unhealthy by turning it into a savory bread pudding. 
Just add some eggs, milk, and extra feta cheese.



 Bake in the oven at 350 until it's no longer jiggly.
Serve warm with a side of steak or roasted chicken and you've got a complete meal.





Cheers to salads with bread in it!
Triple cheers to savory bread pudding!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Eating on Vacation: I Don't Hold Back

As mentioned before, I had a list of things I wanted to eat while at Disneyland.
I usually hate lists but when it comes to food I am the most organized person on the planet.
That organization paid off for I was able to basically eat the entire park.

How much did I eat?
Scroll down and take a gander.




















 Be forewarned, food at Disneyland is not particularly cheap. 
The best bang for your buck, though, is the Bengal Barbecue in Adventure Land across from the Indiana Jones ride. That's where I got my grilled asparagus.
 Great flavor and decent prices.

The best thing there? 
The Dole Whips.


How do you eat on vacation?
Do you hold back or plow through like me?

Saturday, February 25, 2012

When People Cooler Than You Like You, Awesome Things Happen


Good Morning! Just a quick pop in to tell you about some amazing things going on around Dancing Branflakes.

photo of me by Susan Yee of En Pointe Photography


Melissa of So About What I Said... featured me in her 100 word or less love story series. 
If you don't know Melissa you are sorely missing out. 
Her famous blog talks about her life as a writer, blogger, and future wife as a woman with a disability.  But, her disability doesn't stop her from achieving her dreams and as a reader I am honored to tag along on her path to success.

Thank, Melissa! You're awesome!

See the feature HERE.


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I was also featured on Debby's blog, Inspired Design.
Seriously, how lucky am I?
She is also one of those "You're crazy popular and talented, can you please be my friend?" blogger.
You know the type.
She's the blog that I honestly look forward to reading every morning and when her post does come up my jaw drops because they are so amazing. 
And the fact that she featured me as part of her Inspiration Girl Series?
Humbled. Completely humbled.

See the feature Here.


Thank you, ladies!
Love you all to the moon!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Fear: Roller Coasters

 I have a fear of roller coasters. 
I hate saying that because it goes against all I believe about being fun and carefree. 
I love corkscrews and going upside down. I love sharp turns and going fast. 
But you know the point when you go down a steep slope and you feel like the world is dropping out from under you? Yeah, I hate that feeling. 
Sometimes I cry. 
Sometimes I want to grip the man's hand next to me so hard that he's forced to cry with me. 


Mr. Branflake loves roller coasters. LOVES them. 
But because of my fear we have never been on one together.

This time... this time I wanted to be brave so I grabbed Mr. Branflake's hand as soon as the California Adventure gates opened and marched right up to the biggest, baddest coaster in the park. 
I told him, "I will lose my nerve if we don't do it now. I don't want to talk about it. I swear I will change my mind if we talk about what's about to happen."




So, as we waited for our turn, we talked about everything except roller coasters.  
We talked about what we would do that day, the list of things I wanted to eat, the weather, the sky, the person in front of us, the person behind us... you get the picture.


As we got in I was remarkably calm. 
 I had my man next to me. All was right in the world.
As soon as the countdown started I even thought, "I will conquer this fear!"



I wish I could tell you that's what happened. 
I would love to be able to say, "I went on the craziest roller coaster and it was awesome and we went on it three more times because I loved it so much!"

That is not what happened. I didn't cry, but I came close. 
I also came close to throwing up, peeing my pants, and having a heart attack. 

I am not smiling in this photo.
I am thinking, "I am never going on a roller coaster ever again."
(I think the kid behind me is saying the same thing.)

In Recap: 
Fear: Not Conquered.
Dancing Branflake: Totally Okay With That.
For the record: I love Space Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain. Love them.
Those don't have huge dips.

Raise both your hands if you have a fear of roller coasters!
(Get the joke? Haha!)


photos by Dancing Branflake

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Weekend Outfit

I signed up. Yup!
Follow my blog with Bloglovin



Hey guys! I'm back from my absolutely amazing Disneyland trip.
I'm so full of happy memories and good food but I'm already having Disney withdrawals.
I know a lot of you don't get the appeal of running around like a ten year old with Mickey ears
but all I can tell you is that if you've ever wanted to feel like you've stepped into a movie then you need to go to Disneyland.
Artistically speaking, Disneyland is perfection.
No detail goes unnoticed and their principles of design are unmatched.



I digress...


I want to be wearing this outfit.
I call it a weekend outfit but honestly I'd wear it any day of the week.



Jacket, Top, Jeans, Earrings, Bracelets, ShoesBag 

All right, friends!
What are you wearing right now?
I'd love to hear!


PS... I'm featured over at Inspired Design.
If you don't know that blog then you are seriously missing out.
I'm not kidding when I say that every post on that blog is a treat.
I'm completely honored that Debby featured me. Thanks, Debby!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Pointe Shoes and Stripes

Where I would wear this dress:





~A polo match~
~The Kentucky Derby~
~While picking daffodils in a field~
~A matinee showing of Sunday in the Park with George~
~Brunch at a cafe with my dear friends~






 ~England~
~France~
~Scotland~
~Switzerland~





I love dresses that inspire me to go out and luxuriate a little.
It makes getting up in the morning a whole lot more fun.
ps... those gloves were from my mamma from J.Crew. 
She has good taste.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

From... Anonymous: Regret

Is it okay to have regrets?
photo by Susan Yee of En Pointe Photography


Something happened three years ago that, to this day, I still regret. 
I know it's important to accept the past, to move on, and learn from our experiences 
but with this incident I cannot seem to do any of that. 

I believe that an essential part of learning from mistakes is also the hardest part: 
forgiving yourself. 
The positive person in me thinks I should have done that a long time ago.
The perfectionist and slightly neurotic part of me doesn't think that will ever happen.
Another part of me thinks I should just live with that regret and let it be.
Would that be so bad?


The world tells us we should live without regret but I'm not sure how I feel about that.



What about you?
Do you have any regrets?
Do you think it's okay to live with them?
You are welcome to leave your comments anonymously (or not anonymously).
Just click on the anonymous button on the comment screen.
What was my regret? 
It'll be in there. I think anonymously is the only way I can tell you about it.



Monday, February 20, 2012

Brave: Disney's Newest Princess





Disney is coming out with a new Pixar movie and I am so giddy I think my head and heart is about to explode.  It's set in Scotland (yes, SCOTLAND! My favorite country in the world!) and it tells the story about the amazingly brave princess, Merida. 
Here's the synopsis from IMDB:

Determined to make her own path in life, Princess Merida defies a custom that brings chaos to her kingdom. Granted one wish, Merida must rely on her bravery and her archery skills to undo a beastly curse.


I love that the newest princess is fierce, strong, and has crazy hair. 
And the fact that she's Scottish? Even better! 
Don't tell me that you all aren't wondering if there's a Scottish Prince in a kilt somewhere in this movie.
I think his voice is actually Kevin McKidd (you know, Grey's Anatomy...).
Kevin McKidd is basically Jamie Fraser. 
You book nerds probably know who I am talking about.


How do you feel about Disney Princesses?
Are you already in love with this one as much as I am?
And I love that Disney is focusing on her bravery, not her looks.
photos via IMDB

Friday, February 17, 2012

I'm Going to a Magical Place

This weekend I'm going to a place where horses roam the streets...



...strapping young men in suspenders play the organ for you...



...Princesses and Princes welcome you into their castles...



...carousels sing to you all night long...



...and Mickey is your best friend.



What's your favorite thing to do at Disneyland?
I can't wait to ride Space Mountain ten times in a row and eat a ridiculous amount of corn dogs.
I love Disneyland!
photos by me from my trip in 2010.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Another Scottish Adventure: This one includes young men in vests instead of kilts.


Something else happened in Scotland that I kind of purposely left out.
I thought, "Crud. If they only knew how many times I went into a stranger's car they'd freak out."

But luckily for all of us I'm still alive and here to tell the tale.

While staying in a bed and breakfast in the Highlands I met a lovely American couple.
They knew I was alone and had no car so they offered to drive me around Inverness with them.
Well, first we went to Church and then they drove me around. Such nice people!

Anyway, we ended up at the Castle Stuart Golf Links.
In fact, it was the same course where the Scottish Open was just held just that year.
A big deal since Scotland is the birthplace of golf.


Luckily for all you single ladies, I also got some shots of two Scottish men playing a round.
They were kind enough not to ask me to please stop stalking them.
Haha... just kidding. I was somewhat discrete, mostly due to my zoom lens.
All for the blog, my friends!
All for the blog!




An up close shot for my friends that appreciate a Scot. 



Anyway, Scotland is beautiful all around and their golf courses are no exception.
The scenery of the loch alone is spectacular.
Add in the fact that a monster could be traveling in the depths of it and eating up all the random golf balls makes it all the more exciting.

Haha- now you see why I could never be a travel blogger.
<"And then there was a monster!! Muahahahaha!">





With that touch of immaturity, I bid you farewell.
Or, as the Scots would say,

Tìoraidh an-dràsta!

 ps... I love Scotland!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Valentine's Day Baking Fail. How not to bake with marshmallows. Sad.

 I had such high hopes for these marshmallows. 
I had dreams of fun golden cupcakes filled with pink fluffiness.
I imagined the surprised faces as my friends bit into the ooey gooey goodness.


Everyone got in the tub...



They were so patient to wait for the luscious cake batter that would make them a star.



After twenty minutes of baking I excitedly took them out of the oven.
But instead of happiness I was met with deep disappointment.


 They floated to the top and disintegrated in the batter.
Baking dreams dashed.
Surprised faces gone.
Pinterest step by step guides thrown into the garbage.

Oh, marshmallows. I had such high hopes for you for on Valentine's Day.



I learned my lesson but at least you were fun to decorate with.




Maybe I'll have figured out a solution by next Valentine's Day.
Despite my sadness in the kitchen, I still had a wonderful Valentine's Day.
Mr. Branflake and I went to a late breakfast at an English Pub where we ate a hearty meal and shared some hot cocoa.
We then took a nice walk around the neighborhood before he went to class and I got ready to teach.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

From...Anonymous: Our Heart's Inner Most Desires

photo by Mark Hunter via Studded Hearts

If you could have anything (and I mean anything) for Valentine's Day, what would it be?
It could be material, emotional, soulful, edible... 
whatever you want that you know would feed your heart.

Comments can be submitted anonymously by clicking on the anonymous button in the comment box.
My anonymous comment will be in there... somewhere.


Monday, February 13, 2012

Blue, green, pointe shoes, and wrinkles

Pointe shoes are expensive.
How expensive?
I've worn Grishkos since I was twelve and they've always hovered around $70.
So when I stumbled upon these brand new babies in my closet I about sang hallelujah.
(How did I forget I bought them?)
I then proceeded to 'break them in' by walking around the house in them
(because that's what dancers do)
and then I busted out the camera and tripod and decided to take a few photos.


Apparently, pointe shoes bring out the Sasha Fierce in me.
Sorry for such the intense gaze.

I won this Shabby Apple dress a while ago but had never worn it so
if it looks like it's been folded and shipped for a long time it's because it has.
I almost didn't post these photos because of the wrinkles. 
But the thought of ironing makes me uncomfortable so I just went for it.






I love unearthing forgotten (and expensive) treasures.
I've decided that outfit posts are much more interesting with pointe shoes.
Well, for me at least.
BUT if I were to style this dress with normal people shoes then I would choose a pair of  bright blue flats with a nice contrasting stitching on it.