Thursday, April 28, 2011

I Missed the Boat So I'm Taking A Micro-vacation

Everyone has heard of micro-loans. Sometimes I take a micro-vacation and I’m taking one tonight from cooking dinner. One of my favorite micro-vacations is meeting a friend of mine who lives in the exurbs for lunch, usually downtown. Sometimes we meet at the Walnut Room and at other times, we’ve met at the Art Institute. We enjoy a few hours together of chatting and catching up on news in a very relaxed atmosphere.     

The reason for this micro-vacation is that according to the May, 2011 issue of Money Magazine, I have missed the boat in a couple of ways. For instance, I could have gone to the Maldives for three days and stayed at a luxury resort and spa for only $1,185 by booking on Thus, I would have saved almost $500 by not booking on the hotel’s website for $1,680.

In addition to that, it’s often said that “a diamond is a girl’s best friend.” Elizabeth Taylor’s estate is selling a 33-karat diamond that she bought in 1968 for $305,000. They are estimating that it will sell for $10 to 15 million at auction. I should be going to the estate sale to make some great investments, but I’m not. C’est la vie. There go some more missed opportunities.

As a result, I’m taking my micro-staycation/vacation by not cooking dinner tonight. Many Americans are doing the same. I’ve planned the micro-vacation well by cooking extra before and freezing it. I have numerous plastic freezer containers. No, I do not buy expensive Tupperware. Many are containers from sherbet or other frozen products while others I bought while on sale. They aren’t a pretty matched set but they serve a dual purpose. Besides being good for freezing food, my grandchildren enjoy making towers out of them when they come to visit. Give them a wooden spoon and they can make great noise on them, too.
Tonight we’re having sweet potato tagine with lemon couscous. (See the previous entry “Ensnared On the Internet, I Find Tagine” 12/16/10). We’ll also have Mediterranean chicken breasts. It is my own recipe, from a mélange of sources. Both dishes are great reheated.

                                                Mediterranean Chicken Breasts (This recipe serves 6 to 8 people)

3 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken breasts
½ cup breadcrumbs
two Tbsp olive oil
1 cup red wine
1 medium sized yellow onion sliced thin
2 Tbsp minced garlic
paprika, minced parsley, garlic powder and cumin to taste
a teaspoon of capers

  1. Mix the breadcrumbs with the seasoning. Roll the chicken breasts in the breadcrumb mixture.
  2. Heat the olive oil in large frying pan. Saute the chicken breasts quickly on both sides. Take them out of the pan and pat with paper towels to take out the residual oil.
  3. Saute the onion. Leave in the pan and turn the burner to a medium heat. Add the red wine. Replace the chicken breasts in the pan and cook covered on medium heat for about 45 minutes.




Lyn Cote said...

Darn, I missed the boat too. What were we thinking? What a bargain. And after watching an evening of diamond commercials, I told my dh I was expecting at least a 7 carat diamond ring for Mother's Day. I said that when I put it on, I wanted my hand to drop to the floor. But maybe he can pick something up at Liz's sale.

Lisa Sachs said...

See what I mean, Lyn. We keep passing up these great opportunities to save money. Oh well.