The Friday Five
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It’s Friday! It’s Friday!
On the cheers-ing agenda for the weekend:
1. I finally booked plane tickets for my trip to Europe this summer! That’s right. In mid July, I’m flying out to Austria to meet my sis and brother-in-law in Salzburg, where I am beyond stoked to check this tour off my lifelong bucket list. (Fun fact: I was in The Sound Of Music 3 times as a kid.) Then we are going to meet up with some friends in Germany for a week, followed by a few final days in Florence with just my sis. I cannot WAIT! If you have any recommendations for things to do in any of those countries, be sure to let me know!
2. Also on the agenda for this summer? Just confirmed this week that I’m going to be heading to El Salvador in June with the non-profit humanitarian organization, Unbound. I am beyond excited about this trip for a handful of reasons, many of which I look forward to sharing with you soon. But in short, Unbound is one of those organizations doing incredible, thoughtful, sustainable, and important work with poor and marginalized people in the world, and they’ve invited a few bloggers to come along to catch a glimpse of that work and meet the people on the ground. I’m honored and can’t wait to learn from them.
3. After years and years of
nagging encouragement from my dad, I made one of those quintessential “grown-up” moves this week and finally researched and signed up for an IRA. Ohhhh retirement, someday….
4. The brilliance of NT Wright. Yes, the theology nerd in me was thrilled when I found out that this guy was going to be in KC last night. For those who don’t know him, he’s kind of like this generation’s C.S. Lewis — British, hilarious, crazy smart, creative, and just wise. His writings have played a huge role in shaping (and re-shaping) my faith over the years, specifically about what heaven looks like. So yeah, totally geeked out at the chance to see him in person and hear some of his latest thoughts about the mind and faith. Good stuff.
5. YOU guys. Well, let’s be honest, there’s not a day that goes by when I don’t think about all of you amazing folks sitting at your computers out there who pull up my recipes and give me the chance to make this my job. But this week especially, some of you have just sent some of the nicest emails and comments and Instagram photos of you trying out these recipes. And it just kind of means the world to me. So thanks for being so kind and encouraging and just generally awesome. I really appreciate you. :)
So cheers to you, friends, and I hope you enjoy this week’s Friday Five!
5 spring-y recipes to make with that bunch of asparagus you just bought
- Roasted Asparagus Sesame Toasts with Poached Eggs | How Sweet It Is
- Baked Asparagus Fries with Roasted Garlic Aioli | Just A Taste
- Grilled Asparagus & Chili Orange Quinoa Spring Rolls | Naturally Ella
- Shiitake Panini with Roasted Asparagus Pesto | Oh My Veggies
- 5-Ingredient Bacon Asparagus Pasta | Gimme Some Oven (new this week!)
5 reasons why I continue to have a total writer’s crush on Shauna Niequist
- This book, which was one of my absolute favorite reads last year
- Her other two books, which are quite lovely as well
- Her Instagram and Facebook feeds, especially when they include a Mary Oliver poem
- This post, which captures the way I feel about the church where I used to work
- The Lindsay Letters prints inspired by Shauna’s words
5 items I have bookmarked from this (super reasonably priced!) Etsy store that I stumbled upon
- Glass earrings (in, like, every color — but especially clear glass) — $12
- Rose & Gold Faux Druzy Earrings — $10
- Olive Green Freshwater Pearl Earrings — $18
- Camera Charm Necklace — $10
- Single Layered Triangle Earrings — $14
5 Maddeningly-Cute Treats To Make For March Madness
- The Sweet Sixteen In Cocktail Form | Brit + Co
- Reese’s Peanut Butter & Chocolate Truffle Basketballs | Roxanna’s Home Baking
- Basketball Calzones | She Knows
- Reese’s Basketball Dip | Crazy For Crust
- Basketball Cake | Taste of Home
5 colorful cell phone cases that are perfect for spring! (And for spotting easily in a messy purse!)
- Trapezoid Love | Gelaskins (this has been my case for a year and I love it!)
- Aztec Tribal Case | iRockCase
- Pass This On | Society 6
- Pink Triangle | Gelaskins
- Watercolored Stripes | DotColorKC
I will forever be a Shauna fan, right along with you!
So excited for you on your Europe trip, you’ll have a blast I’m sure! :) Those glass earrings are awesome, thanks for sharing :)
You have got to go to Vienna’s beautiful Square and eat “spaghetti” ice cream!! And visit Stephansplatz Cathedral, of course. :-D
Not sure where in Germany you’re heading, but if Munich is on the list (which I think might be if you’re coming in from Salzburg), I would absolutely recommend Neuschwanstein Castle. It’s the castle that Walt Disney based his castle on! Number of opportunities to pretend you’re a real life Disney princess? At least a thousand!
If you can do a day trip from Florence, I would HIGHLY recommend going to Fattoria Poggio Alloro for a wine tasting luncheon. We went with 4 other couples (and stopped by Sienna and San Gimignano on the same trip – great for shopping) and this was definitely the highlight of our trip! This is a family-owned organic winery and farm, and everything you eat or drink was grown or made by them. Here’s a link if you want to check it out: www.fattoriapoggioallora.com.
Have a great trip!
Totally trying your bacon and asparagus pasta this week, I can’t wait! Also, I spent a summer in Florence. There was this amazing place called Hemingway, and it’s a little cafe that serves different versions of hot chocolate (and other sweets) You can order your chocolate at the percentage of cocoa you prefer…it is unbelievable. I can’t believe I remembered the name but I just Googled it and it’s still there if you want to check it out!
yayy for the Europe trip and again to El Salvador. Will be heading those links you shared.
There was a Sound of Music 3? I can’t believe I (or my mother) doesn’t know about this. Anyway, congrats on booking your trip. Austria is really beautiful (I know, thanks to Sound of Music, haha).
There is a large market in Florence and it’s incredibly fun. Florence is known for it’s silk ties and genuine leather. Have them test the leather with a flame – it’s really cool and will tell you if you are getting ripped off. Everything is price negotiable so bartering should be a part of any purchase. I’m not sure if you’ve bartered before but here are the basics just in case :)
Don’t seem excited or over-interested when you find something you like. Seem almost like you don’t like it that much. Ask how much the price is and offer them a much lower price. I always mentally calculate a middle price I’m willing to pay and offer lower than that so when the seller negotiates a final price when he counter-offers it ends up being the price you wanted. If he won’t bargain quickly put it down and shrug your shoulders and start turning your face towards other market stands. Usually that is when they will cave :) And keep in mind – we spoke to a woman living there and she said that even with the bargained price – it’s way over what they originally paid. Hope that helps!
Just a quick note to say how much I’ve enjoyed several of your 5 ingredient recipes. My wife and I enjoy cooking and often I make a soup of sorts as a starter dish, or for that fast carryover till mealtime.
Historically, some of my soups take hours to prepare. I was so surprised at just how good and close the 5 item dishes matched the all day versions ! Time vs flavor they are a winner hands down.
Last but not at all the least,, I’ve enjoyed the atmosphere and wit of your site while finding the time saving ideas.
Thanks for all,,,
This is your job, Ali! Oooh, envious! I’ll check out NT Wright after this. I’ve never heard of him, but if he’s anything like C.S. Lewis … wow! (any books about lions, witches or wardrobes?)
Thanks for the asparagus recipes, too. I was staring at a lovely bunch of asparagus in the supermarket yesterday but didn’t buy it because I just couldn’t think what to make with it on the spot. ;-)
Just wanted to say I love your site! I’ve pinned tons of your recipes & even made a couple, lol. They were fantastic! I also love The Friday Five and now want to buy everything from the Ike and Co. Etsy shop!
Your Europe trips sounds amazing! I’ve always wanted to go to Austria and Germany!
Thanks for your picks for using up that asparagus I just impulse purchased at the farmers market for no other reason than asparagus means spring is here, right?!
Ali I love your blog! Thank you so much for the intro to NT Wright, I downloaded three of his books this evening. And the recipes are always delicious, too. Thanks for the hard work you do to make our lives so much brighter, happier, and tastier! Have a wonderful trip!