Mushroom and White Wine Pasta: Celebrate the Little Things

by simplylife on June 7, 2012

I’ve been trying to celebrate the little things more.

Life is too easy to get into a routine and function on autopilot without paying attention to all the little details along the way that well…make it life.

You know the routine:  Wake up.  Eat breakfast. Drive to work.  Respond to emails.  Work out.  Cook dinner.  And so on.

But what if, while we kept our jobs and our commutes, we still made time for celebrating all the little things that happen along the way.

So maybe, our routines would look a little something like this:  Wake up.  Realize what a gift it is to have another day.  Drive to work.  Notice the beautiful scenery along the way.  Respond to emails.  Remember how fortunate you are have to have a job.  Work out.  Feel so grateful for your working body.  Cook dinner.  While singing and dancing in your kitchen.  

I’ve been trying to do this more.  To slow down.  Take deep breaths.  Allow things to happen that aren’t written in a schedule somewhere.

In the last month or so, here are some of the simple things I’ve done that have made each day a little more special:

  • Sent flowers to a loved one on a completely random day (I highly recommend doing this; as with most gifts, I’m not sure if it was more fun for the giver or receiver! 🙂 )
  • Called a friend I haven’t talked to in close to a year (ended up being a NEEDED call for both of us!)
  • Took a walk and really noticed the blooming flowers along the way
  • Took a spontaneous trip to a nearby beach with my husband on a chilly night after the rain; it was quiet, serene and the perfect place to take a walk
  • Told a coworker how great she is (yup, it’s as simple as it sounds; why do we not tell people these things often enough?!?!)
  • Rearranged our furniture (I know this sounds like it may not fit into the list, but it’s something I’ve been wanting to do for over a year.  A few small changes made a big difference and my mood completely brightens when I walk into the room.  And it was fun to find that old stack of letters. 🙂 )

This dish is super-simple to prepare and will give you even a little extra time to celebrate the little things that happened throughout your day.


Mushroom and White Wine Pasta

by Simply Life

Keywords: saute entree side vegetarian mushrooms Italian


  • 8 oz. whole wheat pasta
  • 2 tbs. olive oil
  • 1 shallot, sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 oz. sliced baby bella mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
  • 1/2 cup white wine (cook until most liquid evaoparates)
  • Thyme, to taste
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper
  • About 1 tbs. lemon juice
  • Parmesan cheese


1. Cook pasta according to package directions, reserving 1/2 cup cooking water.

2. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add shallot and cook 2-3 minutes. Add garlic and mushrooms and cook 1-2 minutes. Add wine and cook until most of the liquid evaporates, stirring frequently. Stir in spices and lemon juice. Mix with cooked pasta, slowly adding reserved cooking water until reaching desired consistency.

3. Serve, top with parmesan cheese, and enjoy!

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~How do you celebrate the little things in life?

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  • Amy B @ Second City Randomness

    Oh I like this! I used to use wine in cooking more often, but now it’s a rare occasion…

    My friend sent flowers to me at work once. It was the sweetest thing ever!

  • Colleen

    1) This dish looks deeelicious! LOVE mushrooms. 2) I love the little things too! Wonderful post. I randomly send friends/family e-cards or snail mail cards just to let them know I’m thinking of them. And sometimes I bring in a small gift for a coworker to let them know they are appreciated. Those are a couple small things I like to do!

    • Simply Life

      So sweet that you do this! 🙂

  • Yummychunklet

    I love the nuttiness of the mushrooms in this dish. Great recipe!

  • Liz @ Tip Top Shape

    I absolutely love this post. SOmetimes the simplest things like giving someone a compliment can turn around someone’s day. I’m going to try that today! And the pasta looks delicous!

  • Emily @ A Cambridge Story

    Very good advice! I’m definitely going to send someone unexpected flowers soon 🙂

  • Bianca Garcia

    I love this little reminder to enjoy the little things in life. Great post. And the pasta looks wonderful!

    • Simply Life

      Thank You! 🙂

  • Daisy

    this is the most genuinely inspirational post I have read in a long time. such a strong message, with an enticing recipe to boot.

    • Simply Life

      Thanks! You’re so sweet! 🙂

  • Marissa

    Just loved this post! Especially the new ways of describing routine. And the mushroom pasta looks just delicious. Thank you!

  • RichardLAnderson

    Looks great, I think im going to make some later this week!

  • Kristen @ Swanky Dietitian

    What a great post! It’s so easy to get wrapped up in the day to day.
    This was perfect to read today!

    • Simply Life


  • Hillary

    What a beautiful message—and what a beautiful dish!

  • Kari

    I love, love, love this post 🙂 And the look of this dish!

  • Blackswan

    Do u know that I’ve been nicknamed “mushroom” during my teens cause I always go around snatching other people’s mushroom dishes? Hahaha! I’m not joking. Be careful when u cook this next time. Make sure I’m not anywhere near 🙂

  • Bee

    I’d add a little sausage, just because I’m one of those shameless meat-eaters (alright, maybe a little shameful) but other than that this pasta is PERFECT! You did such a good job here!

    • Simply Life

      Oh I think that sounds like a great addition!

    • camille

      I had the same thought re: sausage – I actually thought one of the pieces of mushroom in one of the photos WAS sausage for a minute.

  • Lemon

    Lovely pasta dish. Sometimes wine just gives a very special extra to a dish.

  • Karriann Graf

    Looks like what a 5-star restaurant would serve. Fantastic!

    “Spice it Up”

  • Choc Chip Uru

    This looks like a gourmet diish my friend, beautiful 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  • Colleen

    It sounds so simple but looks so elegant!

  • thyme (sarah)

    First I was attracted to the photo and dish on TS, then when I popped in…you just made my day with your message. I love how your thought process works. I love the wonderful moments you inserted into your regular tasks during the day. You are right…wouldn’t it be wonderful to train our minds to think like this on a regular basis. I have a friend going through a terrible divorce. I think I am going to pop something in the mail to help cheer her up and let her know she has support. thanks!

    • Simply Life

      Thanks for the kind comment! I love that you’re going to do this for your friend! 🙂

  • brighteyedbaker

    I too clicked on your photo on tastespotting simply because the dish looked so good and by the description sounded excellent. I was glad that I took the time to read your post, though, because I think what you mentioned about appreciating little things and getting the most out of life is so important. It is easy to get caught up in day-to-day life, but noticing those little things can make a big difference! Thanks for the reminder 🙂

    • Simply Life

      Thanks so much for this comment- I really appreciate it! 🙂

  • Ameena

    I have the same exact routine as you! Really! Except that I work out first thing.

    Love the idea of complimenting a co-worker. Such an easy thing to do and since I spend so much time with them…hopefully it’ll pay off? 🙂

  • Viviane Bauquet Farre

    A beautiful pasta dish – certainly worthy of taking some time apart to celebrate. Your words about slowing down are truly appreciated!

  • Jolene (

    I love to celebrate the little things and see every day as a reason to celebrate something!

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