Monday, September 13, 2010

Breaking Up is Hard to Do!

First, I'd like to start with a little disclaimer: Yes, our marriage is absolutely fine.  Just wanted to throw that out there before you read this post.

Do you ever think about your ex?  (See?  That's why the disclaimer is at the BEGINNING of the post...)

I think we'd all like to be able to truthfully say, "No, I never think about my ex!  I'm a happily married woman (or man)."  But the truth of it is, we all think of them occasionally.  No matter how rocky the relationship or how painful the breakup is, there are things we are going to miss when we get out of a relationship.  (And YES, I promise, Ryan and I are happily in love.)  Sometimes it might be a certain nickname your ex called you.  It might be a sweater or sweatshirt he or she lent you that you liked to cuddle up in.  Maybe it is a certain reataurant you only went to with THAT person.  I'm no different.  There's something I really missed about my ex... his mother's chicken pasta salad. 

So, I can't keep writing "my ex" in here-- it messes up the flow of the writing.  Let's refer to him as "Art" for the remainder of this post.

One of the best things about going over to Art's house was the weekly batch of chicken pasta salad his mother used to make.  I don't remember what made it so good.  I think all it had was rotini, chicken chunks, and Zesty Italian dressing.  But it was the best snack.  It wasn't too filling.  It was cold, so it was refreshing in the summer.  It just plain tasted GOOD.  For years after we broke up, I kept on making my own version of chicken pasta salad.  I've used all different kinds of pasta, Italian dressings, and added in some other ingredients for color.  But somehow, it has never lived up in my mind to Art's mother's chicken pasta salad.

Yesterday I was making a batch to take to a special gathering with friends.  I was just chopping away and adding a little of this and a little of that.  At the end, I had a little taste.  I think in a way I was still comparing my pasta salad to Art's mother's.  But yesterday, as I tasted mine, I couldn't remember what HERS tasted like anymore.  I was satisfied with my own version.  Maybe that signifies that I am growing up.

So, here's the recipe for MY Chicken Pasta Salad:
1 lb dry pasta cooked al dente (I used macaroni noodles today, but I have used rotini, shell pasta, egg noodles-- whatever you like)
3 large stalks of celery, diced
1/4-1/2 medium yellow onion, diced (add more or less depending on how much you want to taste the onions)
1 large tomato, diced
Light Balsamic Vinagrette dressing
salt, pepper to taste
1-2 cups of cooked, diced chicken breasts

Mix all ingredients except for dressing, salt, and pepper.  Once all items are incorporated, add the dressing, a few tablespoons at a time, mixing in between, until you reach the desired flavor.  Then add salt and pepper, and mix well again. 
My Chicken Pasta Salad

I was so happy to share my chicken pasta salad with my SCRI friends: Dale, Marie, and Cameron!  I had such a wonderful time catching up with all of you today!  I am so glad we will be able to continue to learn together this year!  I am looking forward to The Book Whisperer!  Ann and Jabar-- I missed you two!
Palmetto Pimento Cheese... the BEST pimento cheese (get the one with the jalapenos!)
Cameron's veggie tray
Our fabulous group

Also, I need to thank Meredith and David for a fun and delicious dinner last night at Miyo's in Columbia.  I was thinking about the delicious Avocado-Crab salad today and wishing I could recreate that!  So tasty!  Thanks for putting me up last night!  Love y'all!
Avocado-Crab Salad from Miyo's: delicious!
How cute is this-- it's in an avocado shell!  These pictures don't do it justice.


  1. Oh "Art!" He was a wonderful place holder for Ryan. And that pasta looks delicious! So do those crab avocado thingies.

  2. I love those avocado appetizers! And David loves that same pimiento cheese! And we love having you (and your family) to stay with us anytime!


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