Chicken Stroganoff

Most times planning a meal in advance is hard for me, particularly because I am very picky and have to be in the mood for certain things.  Well, one day while perusing a magazine in the doctor’s office, I stumbled across a recipe for Chicken Stroganoff. Unfortunately, just as my brain instructed my hand to reach for a pen, the doctor called me back to the room.  Nonetheless, I came home with a basic idea, and a desire to create this meal.  I have no formal recipes, but here goes…

preparing to create Chicken Stroganoff

3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/2 medium white onion sliced

1 clove garlic smash-sliced

a splash of olive oil

salt, pepper, paprika – to taste

1 can cream of mushroom soup

2-3 large spoonfuls of sour cream

half bag of egg noodles cooked

milk

I began by rinsing and slicing the chicken breasts in half (helps them cook faster).  Sprinkled with salt, pepper, paprika + rosemary and a tinge of cumin (only if you have it).  I let that sit for a minute while I prepped the other items.

Start boiling the water for the noodles, and heat olive oil in a separate pan for the chicken (medium heat).  Once the oil was heated, I placed the onions, then garlic in the pan to cook for a couple of minutes, then placed the chicken on top of the onions.

After about 5-7 minutes, the noodles should be ready for the water and the chicken ready to flip. Another 7 minutes later, the noodles and chicken should be ready. Drain the noodles and remove chicken and onions from the pan.

Pour mushroom soup in pan, stir. Add sour cream and splash of milk. Stir.  Add pepper and paprika (to taste).  Heat thoroughly (even to a small boil or simmer).

Dress your plate with your vegetable of choice, noodles, then chicken atop the noodles and spoon sauce over both.

Enjoy!

p.s. I warmed a can of green peas as my veggie…and sprinkled fresh cut portabello mushrooms and sun-dried tomatoes in the sauce just before serving for extra flavor

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Hairstylists, Marketing & Customer Service

Cape Canaveral
Image by Goldmund100 via Flickr

What can a hairstylist teach us about marketing?? I just read this article from MarketingProfs, and more than one light bulb went off! Marketing Is So Much More Than Promotion: Just Visit My Hairdresser . Besides the title of the article, reading it was more like an epiphany….what would happen if we started putting the customer first.

Ok, honestly not much of an epiphany, more like a trip back to the basics.  When we begin to position ourselves and our business from the eyes (or perspective) of the ones we serve, we can truly evaluate the picture.  It’s almost like looking in the mirror.  Sometimes we avoid it because we aren’t happy with what we see; sometimes we look past it because we want to see more than is really there; why not look directly at it and discover what the mirror truly reveals.

Your business is a reflection of you.  Why not strive to be your best at all times?!

Moving past the reflection, you have to also make time for strategy.  It’s easy to jump into the work…but what are you working for?

Create a few definitions with the following questions:

Self-Focused

1. Who am I? What am I known for?

2. Who do I want to be?

Client-Centered

3. Who is my ideal client? Where can I find them?

4. What will make my client come back (stay)?

5. Am I providing the service my client needs? (Am I meeting my client’s needs?) How do I know?

6. Will my client refer me to their friends?

Business-minded

7. Do I have processes in place to attract & retain both clients and employees?

8. Do I have a clearly defined sales goal? business goal?

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REVIEW: The Princess and the Frog

The Princess and the Frog
Image via Wikipedia

The newest release from Disney, ‘The Princess and the Frog’, has apparently been a highly anticipated and hotly contested event. Forgive me for not getting bogged down in the debates and discussions surrounding the historical nature and controversial depiction of the characters for this film. Am I wrong for just wanting to enjoy a good family movie?

In my opinion, cartoon movies are classic ways to bring families together. A family may not sit down and eat dinner together, but a good old Disney cartoon, or any other family cartoon movie brings out the togetherness….and the popcorn!

At any rate, while looking online for other mothers who blog…I came across The Integrated Mother, who subsequently led me to an article at CNN.com. Both articles touched on the undertones of this new Disney movie.  While I agree that this is quite an occasion to make note of, I wouldn’t go so far as to demoralize the advancement with banter about frogs and cities. With that in mind…I am going to move forward to my thoughts on the movie.

Overall I thought the Princess and the Frog was fun and engaging.  The colors, the characters and the songs kept my little one engaged…as well as a number of her friends (we went on a toddler play-date).  I enjoyed the details in the story-line and I walked away with quite a few key messages:

1. The value of commitment

2. The value of relationships

3. Faith and believing

4. Hardwork and determination

5. Sensitivity to others (acceptance)

In life we encounter many things…trials & tribulations, along with joyous occasions.  We feel that success comes without compromise and though sometimes we want to take the easy way or the quickest route, we know that hard work and perseverance  truly helps us to achieve our goals and accompanying success.

I applaud Disney for demonstrating all those things in a single movie about an African-American girl who spends half the movie as a frog.  After all…success doesn’t have a face, and it looks different to different people.  What matters most is how you get there.  And that’s the message I want my kids to receive.

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