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G. Tolley

Strawberry Pineapple Lemonade — August 19, 2017

Strawberry Pineapple Lemonade

Fall is quickly approaching, but with this drink you can have a little bit of summer all year round. I honestly love this drink because it’s refreshing and simple.

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Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Ice
  • ½ Cup Strawberries
  • ½ Cup Pineapple
  • 1 Lemon

 

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Directions 

  1. Clean and prepare all the fruits. I like to cut off the top of the strawberries, but you can keep them on if you’d like. For your lemon, all you need is the juice.
  2. Add all of the ingredients into a blender, and set to a high setting to liquefy the concoction.
Travel Bucket List — August 9, 2017

Travel Bucket List

Life is too short not to explore. The world is full of seemingly endless new places to discover, and it features a broad range of cultures and opportunities. This is why my parents took me on vacation while growing up, as they wanted to show me there is a world outside of small town, USA. This sense of adventure has always been inside of me. In a way, this is what fueled my interest in anthropology and my future profession as a museum curator. I’ve combined a bucket list of where I would love to go on vacation one day. I’m almost certain in the next couple of years I’ll be accomplishing a few of these.

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Madrid, Spain

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I’d love to visit Europe, but who wouldn’t? I think I wouldn’t love London or Paris because they are overcrowded and just a little too touristy for me. Madrid is beautiful all year round and has breathtaking architecture. The only issue is that my Spanish skills are VERY rusty.

 

Sydney, Australia

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Ever since I was a kid watching the Crocodile Hunter, I’ve wanted to go to Austrailia. I know for a fact I wouldn’t be a fan of the outback, but I’d die just to spend a day hanging out at the harbor watching the ships come and go.

 

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

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Much like Las Vegas, Dubai sits in a middle of a desert. The modern day cosmopolitan city has the world’s tallest building, has great shopping, and seems to know how to provide a good time.

 

Austin, Texas

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In past years, Austin has turned into the hipster paradise of the south. One of the biggest hipster conventions in the world is held there every March and is called South by Southwest. I’ve always wanted to go to the week-long event that takes over the whole city. Hopefully one year it will be held during Spring Break so I can drive down with some friends for the week.

 

Cape Town, South Africa

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Name one other place in the world where you can see mountains, beaches full of penguins, and wild giraffes in the same day. You can’t!

 

Vancouver, Canada

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If you didn’t know already, I LOVE CANADA. Earlier in the summer, I got to visit a few spots in British Columbia, and ever since then I’ve been trying to persuade my parents to go back. For me, it’s perfect because it never gets too hot. Vancouver has incredible nature life, and the Canadian people are just the best.

 

Chicago, Illinois

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John Hughes’s films of the 80s made me fall madly in love with Chicago. Maybe it’s something about the endless skyscrapers, or something about me just wanting to visit the Field Museum. All I know is that Chicago is a must visit for me in the next few years.

 

Havana, Cuba

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It’s just crazy to think only 300 miles away from Miami, there is a place that was off limits for years. I don’t think I’d like to spend a whole week there, but possibly visit on a three-day cruise instead.

 

Seattle, Washington

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Another hipster hotspot is Seattle, Washington. I’ve been to Seattle once this summer, but only for four hours while driving to the harbor for our cruise. Just like Vancouver, I love the weather. Honestly, I love rainy days and it rains there almost every day.

Grilled Pizza — July 29, 2017

Grilled Pizza

Just like the rest of the world, I like pizza. I’ve been wanting to make a pie for some time, and because it’s perfect grilling weather I wanted to make a grilled pizza. I wanted to make this really simple so that you could add to it at home with your favorite toppings. Since I never made a homemade pizza before, I’ll be using Mario Batali’s recipe from Buzzfeed.

 

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Ingredients

Dough

  • 1¼ cups Warm water
  • 1/2 ¼-ounce Packet Active Dry Yeast
  • ¾ teaspoons Sugar
  • 1 ¾  cups All Purpose Flour
  • 1 tablespoons Salt
  • 2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Topping

  • 1 cup Crushed Tomatoes
  • 3 Garlic Cloves, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon Black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 tablespoon Ground Oregano
  • 1 1/4 cup Mozzarella Cheese
  • 6 Fresh Basil Leaves, minced

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Directions

  1. In a small bowl, take your warm water, yeast, and sugar and mix them together. Let the yeast activate for 10 minutes.
  2. In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients of flour and salt.
  3. Make a well in the center of the flour, and add the yeast mixture and olive oil. Using your hands, combine the ingredients until the dough comes together.
  4. Transfer the dough onto a lightly floured surface, and knead it for 5 minutes. It should be smooth.
  5. Take your large bowl form earlier, and spray it down with cooking spray. Put the dough back in and cover it. In a warm area, let this rise for an hour and a half.
  6. Now that it has doubled in size, punch out the air. Divide the dough in half, and form two balls of it. Set them to a side for 15 minutes.
  7. Either with a food processor or a blender, liquify the crushed tomatoes, garlic, pepper, salt, and oregano.
  8. At this time make sure your grill is clean, and heat it to 400 degrees.
  9. Roll out the dough into 10-inch circles, and spray it with cooking spray. One at a time, carefully place the dough onto the grill. Grill each side for four minutes.
  10. Add the pizza sauce, cubed mozzarella, and basil leaves. Then put it back on the grill for 4 minutes to melt the cheese.
Turkey Basil Sandwiches — July 22, 2017

Turkey Basil Sandwiches

For this recipe, I decided to bake a whole turkey breast rather than buying deli meat. The smallest breast I could find was 3 lbs, so after I made these sandwiches I had plenty of leftovers. If you don’t want to make the whole breast just go ahead and buy a pound of sliced turkey meat.

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Ingredients

  • 3 lb Turkey Breast
  • 4 tablespoons Basil
  • 4 tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 4 Ciabatta rolls
  • 4 slices Provolone Cheese
  • ⅓ cup Mayonnaise or Miracle Whip
  • 4 tablespoons Basil
  • ½ teaspoon Lemon Juice
  • ⅛ teaspoon Sea Salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon Pepper

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Directions

  1. For at least 24 hours allow the frozen turkey breast to defrost in the fridge.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a tin foil lined roasting pan, place the turkey breast in the center. Then add about 2 tablespoons of olive oil on top and rub on 2 tablespoons of basil. Loosely cover it with a sheet of tin foil. My turkey breast took 2 and a half hours to bake, but you will know when it’s done when the center of it registers as 160 degrees. Let this cool down for two hours before carving into slices.
  3. Combine the mayo, basil, lemon juice, sea salt, pepper, and one tablespoon olive oil in a small bowl.
  4. Slice and prepare the tomato, then set to the side.
  5. In a skillet on a medium high heat, drizzle on the rest of the olive oil and toast the faces of the rolls.
  6. Spread a little of the mayo on the top bun. Then on the bottom bun add on about 4 oz of turkey, followed by some tomato and a slice of provolone. Put the sandwich together, and put it back in the skillet for a few minutes to melt the cheese.

 

GTolley.com Update — July 19, 2017

GTolley.com Update

I thought I’d update everyone about some changes on gtolley.com. First of all, you might have noticed the new timeline style layout on the website. The theme I picked out is Lingonberry by Anders Noren and is free on WordPress.

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Since I do have a Premium account, I can customize the website a little bit. Currently, I’m using FF Market for headings and the default theme font for a base font.

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Desktop and tablet users can also see the new palm leaf background, which I got from Creative Commons.Screen Shot 2017-07-19 at 11.03.16 PM.png

 

Plus, I updated my logo this week as well. I did this by using my two favorite design websites, Canva and Picmonkey. Right now I’m trying to figure out how to add some custom CSS elements as well.

Next month I restart school, and I’m going to change my uploading schedule. At least for this semester, expect normal blog posts on the 2nd and 4th Wednesday of each month. Monthly favorites will be included with the blog post on the 4th week. What will stay the same is each Saturday there will be a recipe uploaded here. Every once in awhile, I’ll post a random blog as well. 

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Best Movies of 2017 So Far + Fall & Winter Movies — July 12, 2017

Best Movies of 2017 So Far + Fall & Winter Movies

Can you believe that we are already at the halfway point of 2017?! I came up with a list of my top five favorite films so far this year. This list includes flicks from the first half of the year so it only features movies that were released prior to July 1st. (Sorry Spiderman!) After that, I thought I’d share some of the films I’m hyped for in the later half of 2017.

5.) Get Out

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The directorial debut of Jordan Peele that became the overnight successful horror movie while also providing social commentary. It’s mega creepy, and the ending is everything.

 

4.) Wonder Woman

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All the DC film universe needed to save itself was one woman.  Gal Gadot under the direction of Patty Jenkins is two and a half hours of kick ass woman powered action.

 

3.) Kong Skull Island

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This is the second installment in Legendary’s MonsterVerse that follows a team of scientists and Vietnam soldiers who travel to an uncharted island, coming face to face with the king of the island named Kong.  I already have a full review and post over the movie on here. In it, I explored how it’s an anti-war film in disguise.

 

2.) A Cure for Wellness

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This German American horror film isn’t for the faint of heart.  It centers around a young banker who is trapped at a Swiss spa. He learns what lurks in the water below the spa while befriending a mysterious young girl who resides there. If you didn’t have a fear of eels before this movie, you will afterwards.

 

1.) Baby Driver

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Edgar Wright’s fast paced crime film with a killer soundtrack and an even better cast. Stars Ansel Elgort as a talented getaway driver who is trying to get out of the game. Baby Driver is currently in theaters, and I’ll link the soundtrack here.

Anticipated films for the later half of the year

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets- July 21, 2017

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Atomic Blonde- July 28, 2017

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Kingsman: The Golden Circle- September 22, 2017

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My Little Pony: The Movie October 6, 2017

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(Don’t Judge!)

Thor: Ragnarok- November 3, 2017

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Murder on the Orient Express- November 10, 2017

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Justice League- November 17, 2017

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The Diaster Artist- December 1, 2017

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Star Wars: The Last Jedi- December 15, 2017

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Pitch Perfect 3- December 22, 2017

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Greatest Showman- December 25, 2017

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Fruit Salad — July 8, 2017

Fruit Salad

For every BBQ or cookout, you’ve got to have some amazing side dishes to eat. This fruit salad is the easiest dish ever and is impossible to mess up. You know what they say: sometimes the simplest things are the best.

Ingredients

  • ½ Lime
  • 2 teaspoons Sugar Substitute
  • 6 cups Watermelon
  • 1 ½ cups Strawberries,
  • 2  ½ cups Seedless Grapes


Directions

  1. Squeeze the juice from half of a lime into a bowl. Add in the sugar substitute and let it sit and dissolve.
  2. Grab a cutting board and chop up half the watermelon to produce the six cups needed
  3. Remove the tops of the strawberries and julienne.
  4. Cut the grapes into halves.  
  5. Add the fruit to a large bowl and pour in the lime juice. Toss until coated

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Get To Know Me Tag — July 5, 2017

Get To Know Me Tag

Guess what?! G.Tolley.com just hit 1,000 views! In celebration of this, I’d thought I would do a getting to know me tag. Thank you to everyone who supported me over the past year.

1.) Are you named after anyone?

Yes. I was named after my great aunt.

 

2.) What’s the first thing you notice about people?

Their hair.

 

3.) What is your eye color?

Light blue.

 

4.) Favorite smells?

IDK. Something really masculine, like leather or burning wood.

 

5.) What did you want to be when you were a kid?

A party planner.

 

6.) How tall are you?

5’ 6’’

 

7.) What was your favorite/worst subject in High School?

Favorite: History (If it didn’t involve a lot of research and writing)

Worst: Any science class

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8.) Who are some of your favorite YouTubers?

Ladylike, CineFix, PewDiePie, TheSorryGirls, Binging with Babish, Casey Neistat, Elijah & Christine, and Patrick (H) Willems.

 

9.) 5 things that make your average day better?

-Sleep

-Caffeine ( Diet Dr. Pepper preferably)

-One Hour without interruption in order to work on stuff

-Getting out of the house

-Going to the movies

 

10.) What is your favorite restaurant?

The Cheesecake Factory.

 

11.) What is your usual bedtime?

During the school year, it’s  about 10:30-11:00 pm. During the summer it’s way too late, so maybe about 3 am.

 

12.) Which languages do you wish you could speak?

Spanish.

 

13.) What could you have done to make today more productive?

Get out of bed.

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14.) What is your favorite movie?

Jurassic Park.

 

15.) What is your favorite song at the moment?

“As If It’s Your Last” by BLACKPINK

 

16.) What is the last thing you bought?

A milkshake and a movie ticket to Cars 3

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17.) What phone do you have?

Rose Gold IPhone 6s

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18.) What is your favorite color?

Gold, but some people argue that it isn’t a real color, so I guess right now it’s millennial pink.

 

19.)What is your greatest achievement?

Catching two dodge balls at band camp two years ago.

 

20.) What are your guilty pleasures?

Women’s wrestling or stealing mini shampoos and conditioners at hotels.

Red, White, and Blue-Cheese Burger — July 1, 2017

Red, White, and Blue-Cheese Burger

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, the summer heat is beating down! We are in the middle of grilling season and for Americans such as myself it’s Fourth of July weekend. Hamburgers are the hands down the most American food out there. Right behind cheesecake, burgers are probably my second favorite food of all time.
Ingredients 

Buns

  • 1 ½ cup + 1 teaspoon Water
  • 1 packet of Active Dry Yeast
  • 1 tablespoon Brown Sugar
  • 4 ½ cup All Purpose Flour, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 5 tablespoon Unsalted Butter, melted
  • ¼ cups Baking Soda
  • 1 Egg

Hamburger

  • 1 ½ pounds Ground Hamburger
  • 1/2 cup Breadcrumbs
  • ½ teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • ½ teaspoon Onion Powder
  • 2 teaspoon Pepper
  • 2 teaspoon Brown Sugar
  • ½ teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Paprika
  • ½ teaspoon Salt
  • 1 cups Blue Cheese Crumbles

Sauce

  • ¼ cup Mayo
  • 2 tablespoons Ketchup
  • 1 teaspoon Pickle Juice
  • 2 teaspoon Hot Sauce of Choice
  • 1 teaspoon Season Salt

Directions 

  1. Before we begin on the actual burger, we are going to need to bake the rolls. Normally I’d just buy buns, but I just have too much time on my hands. In a stand mixer or bowl, combine the 1 ½ cup of water, active yeast, and brown sugar. Let the yeast activate in the water for five minutes.
  2. Then in the same bowl, add the flour, salt, and melted butter in. Mix this by hand or on a low setting until no large flour clumps are left. If you are doing by hand, this is going to be sticky so knead this on a floured surface until smooth.
  3. Whatever bowl you were using needs to be greased with nonstick spray before placing the dough back in. Put it back in, and cover it to rise for an hour.
  4. After the dough has risen twice its size, put the dough on a floured surface. Cut it into 8 even pieces, and spray down a 9×13 pan. To make the bun shape, pull the edges of the dough wedge together to make a sphere shape. Once you’ve done this to all 8c of them, place them into the pan and cover again to let them rise for an hour.
  5. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Bring about 8 cups of water to a low boil. Once the boil is constant, remove from heat and slowly whisk in the baking soda. Bring this back to a simmer on a low heat.
  6. To give the buns the pretzel crust, you are going to need to boil them. One at a time put the buns in the water. Start by using the steam side down and let it sit for 30 seconds. Then rotate it over for another 30 seconds. Quickly remove it from the water and drain off the water using a slotted spoon. Put it back into the pan and continue on.
  7. In a small bowl, beat the egg with one teaspoon of water. Brush the egg wash onto the balls. With a paring knife cut slashes on top of dough balls. Let them bake for 30 minutes.
  8. All you have to do for the hamburgers is combine the grounded beef with the breadcrumbs, garlic powder, onion powder, pepper, brown sugar, cayenne pepper, paprika, salt, and blue cheese. Grill, bake, or pan fry this however you want the paddies.
  9. To top this all off combine mayo, ketchup, pickle juice, hot sauce,season salt in small bowl.
  10. You are probably going to have too many buns, but they should be fine for a couple of days in a ziplock back. Take one of the buns and cut it in half lengthwise. Take some of the sauce you made and smear it on the top bun. Then gather the rest of the condiments and put the patty between the buns.
June Favorites + Playlist — June 28, 2017

June Favorites + Playlist

Now that June has passed, I’m at the halfway mark of my summer break. Thinking back, I haven’t done much since I had my birthday at the beginning of the month; all I’ve done is studied and written essays for my summer classes. One goal of mine for July is to do something at least once a week – to get out of my PJs and have an adventure with my friends. I think now I’m also going to make a monthly playlist on Spotify, so this month’s songs will be listed below.

Sally Hansen Miracle Gel Nail Polish

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One skill I’ve never mastered is painting my nails. When I get the chance to get them done, I want them to last. Normally gel polish has to bake on, but this formula dries like normal polish yet has the strength of gel. This summer I recommend the colors 184 Frill Seeker, 419 Redgy, and 240 It Girl.

 

Sailor Stuffed Alpaca

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Japanese kawaii culture is the definition of cute. (Literally and figuratively) Every summer, my two best friends go to a convention in Dallas and come back to show off their cool merch. This month, they picked up a stuffed sailor alpaca. IT’S SO CUTE! I love alpacas and llamas so much. It goes perfectly with my other alpaca named Eric.
Sephora Colorful Eyeshadow Carousel 288

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It seems like my recent go-to look has been a red smoky eye, but I’ve been experimenting with purple shadows this month. You get that bright pop of color without being too crazy. Typically shimmery shadows like this aren’t as long lasting as this is. Sephora’s in-store brand makeup is really underrated compared to others in its price category.
Louise et Cie Kambria Heels

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I don’t normally buy shoes, but when I saw these I couldn’t say no. Neutral shoes like these can be worn all year long and year after year. That’s why I don’t feel bad investing in pieces like these. Chunky heels make the shoe easier to walk in and gives you some support.

Anna Griffin Thank You Cards

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Thank you cards are always good to have on hand. The pink marveling and metallic lettering just stands out compared to other boxed cards.

June Playlist