Archive for November, 2008

Super week!
November 30, 2008

Wow, this has been a super week.  First, I went for a run on Tuesday, the last one before the big race.  And on the last mile of my run, I came across a bunch of stuff out on the street in front of a house under renovation.  And I found this little gem!  I have been in desparate need of a filing cabinet.  This one is substantial and I have the bruise on my inner thigh to prove it.  When I got home at the end of my run, I drove back over and picked it up.  It was out by the trash and some other stuff, so I figure they were getting rid of it.  Yay free stuff!

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I have previously posted about Turkey Day and lots of successful cooking, so I will spare those details.

I also got to catch up with my friend from law school, Legally Challenged.  (I’ll just call her Legally for short.)  It was so nice to see her again.  I don’t think we’ve seen each other since graduation!  We’ve emailed and talked on the phone, but it’s been a year and a half!!  We chatted for a couple hours, mostly about boys!!!  I also got to see her new car – super cute!  Hopefully I’ll get to catch up with her again when she’s home for the next holiday.

I also got to spend some time with Barbie while she was in town.  We went to lunch, which was yummy.  It was an opportunity for us to catch up, get some yummy Indian food, and do some girly shopping.  After a very delightful lunch, we stopped at a yarn store so Barbie could stock up on some fabulous supplies.  Then we hit up one of the great discount stores.  We each made some purchases that involved clothing and cookie cutters.  We both needed the cookie cutters.  I also bought a glass banana.  Yes, I said GLASS BANANA.  My office is having its holiday party next weekend and there is a white elephant gift exchange.  The glass banana was only $3.99 plus tax, and was Lenox – that famous glass and ceramics maker!  You know I’m already plotting to steal back my own gift!

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And when I got home I decided it was finally time to put up my tree.  I haven’t finished decorating the rest of the house, but at least I got a little bit of festive-ness going on in one room!

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After a long weekend and such a super week, here’s hoping that this week will just be just as great!!

Happy Turkey Day!
November 27, 2008

One of my favorite holidays!  As per my usual tradition, I got up early and ran 5 miles.  That race gets bigger and bigger every year, it’s more like a brisk walk while dodging other people.  I wasn’t as prepared this year, so we took it easy and chatted along the way.  Regardless, I ran 5 miles and now I can eat whatever I want!

Speaking of eating…I always make the dessert for Turkey day.  But this year I got my little hands on a couple good recipes and offered to attempt those too.

First, dessert – Spiced Chocolate Chip-Pecan Pie

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It’s supposed to be “drizzled” with chocolate, but the chocolate “plopped” more than it drizzled.  So I just covered it with chocolate and threw on some chocolate chips for good measure!

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And my other brave attempts.  Cherry Cranberry Sauce

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And finally – Baked Butternut Squash with Apples. This smells so good cooking!  You can see the steam rising off of it, fresh out of the oven.

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And in tackling the squash I only managed to cut myself once!  Impressive, considering my history with sharp objects.  Also, I successfully avoided burning myself as well – also impressive!!

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Happy Thanksgiving!

eyes & ears
November 26, 2008

What I’m currently listening to…

Buckcherry: Black Butterfly
This is one of my favorite, pure rock bands.  I’m still waiting for this album to grow on me like the others in the past.  It doesn’t seem quite as catchy, but I have been only intermittantly catching bits while I’m in the car.  Although the first single, “Too Drunk,” doesn’t disappoint.  It’s right up there with “Porno Star,” “Lit Up,” and “Crazy Bitch.”  All the great Sex, Drugs, & Rock ‘n Roll songs they produce!  But I am happy to report that this album, like all the others, has great workout and running music.  iPod here it comes!

What I’m currently reading…

The Bombshell Manual of Style  (by Laren Stover)
Va Va Voom!  This is the greatest $2.99 plus tax that I’ve ever invested!  Found this on my way out of a discount store after I had already made my purchases.  After flipping a couple pages of this tall, narrow book, I walked back to the cashier and handed her a couple dollars and some change.  It’s not that it’s really a manual to teach you how to be a bombshell, but how to nurture your inner bombshell.  It explains the difference between a bombshell and a diva and other lesser respected femme fatale stereotypes.  If nothing else, it is entertaining and I recommend it for every woman on your gift list!

I has an ouchie
November 21, 2008

I have done it.  Or rather, I have done something.  To my right arm.  My deltoid to be exact.  I injured my left deltoid several years ago when I got overzealous with a swimming workout.  And this is how it feels, although not quite as bad.  I can still move my right arm, but it makes typing, writing, mouse clicking, sleeping, and general everyday things more painful.  Several anti-inflammatories at a time don’t seem to touch it.  The only thing that is relieving is a big bag of ice!  Which is oh so attractive sitting at my desk at work with baggie of ice tied to my arm with my scarf…hey, I’m resourceful!  The worst part…I have absolutely no idea how I did it.  Could be too much upper body workout, or too much mouse clicking, or just my weird sleeping habits and awkward positions I sometimes find myself sleeping in.  Either way, I has an OUCH and I wish it would go away!!

Sheep, a donkey, and camels, oh my!
November 16, 2008

Last night, I joined my favorite former coworker and great friend, Brit, for dinner and a show.  It was lovely, as always, to catch up with her.  We had a fantastic dinner at my absolute favorite restaurant in town.  I have never had a bad meal there or bad service, in fact everything is always impeccable as it was tonight.

After dinner, we bolted to the other side of town for the show.  Caught in traffic in the parking lot (!), we were a couple minutes late, but not too bad.  The show was not exactly what I thought.  I thought it would be just those famous dancers from NY with legs for days.  Apparently I was wrong.  There are other actors, dancers, and singers.  I guess they need something to create a distraction while those famous dancers do costume changes and to make a (loosely stitched) plot to the whole show.  I got into the groove on the first act and figured it out and thought it was cute, with exceptional dancing and precision.  It’s definitely the holiday season in Music City now!  Then came intermission.

The second act was another story.  And no, I don’t mean a new plot!  It made a bizarre twist of events and I am still left reeling.  First, there were several ‘little people’ (all under 4 feet) dressed like elves.  Several.  Dancing around and singing.  Then the show performed “Carol of the Bells.”  This is the one holiday song that I don’t like.  In fact, I vehemently don’t like it…it scares the crap out of me!!  And to top it off…little, creepy stage children were singing it with giant gleaming smiles.  And the famous dancers had tiny xylophones on the backs of their costumes and they were playing each other’s backs while dancing.

But it was the final scene that definitely threw me.  It was the nativity story and seemed overly religious and preachy to me.  But I didn’t discredit too much, it was a Christmas show after all, even if it made me a little uncomfortable.  But it was a nativity story with LIVE ANIMALS!  First there was a donkey as they rode in telling the story.  Then later there was a sheep in the manger scene.  There there was this elaborate scene where people walked across the stage like they were walking across the desert, and there were not one but three camels!  The final portion of this scene involved five sheep and the three camels and the entire cast!

So, to recap, there were 5 little people, 2 creepy kids, 18 famous dancers, 5 sheep, 3 camels, and a donkey.  And a partridge in a pear tree…ok not really, but they did dance to that song!  Certainly a night I won’t forget!

Adventures in Awards
November 14, 2008

Last night, I took Bama’s friend, Miss B, to a local country music awards show, hosted by one of my former employers.  Although I think they should rename it the PCA’s, or the Pop Culture Awards.  There were mega movie stars galore, TV stars, rap artists, reggae music, former pop artists, jokes about the recent election, and the list goes on.  It was all glam and very little country.  (though I was able to rack up some points on “spot the mullet”)  But it was moderately entertaining, and I enjoyed Miss B’s company.

One of the highlights of the night was Miss B’s interpretation of a woman standing near our aisle.  In the words of Miss B: “She works so hard all year not eating just so she can wear a bird on her chest.”  The woman was frail, but had on this crazy strapless dress that looked like a huge feather boa was wrapped around the top of the dress. 

The other highly entertaining moment of the night was at the after party.  First we ran into Abe Lincoln crossing the street, but that’s not the exciting part believe it or not.  We mingled and ate (to make up for the woman with the bird dress), but decided to head home after a little while.  On our way out, we noticed a man wearing a suit and a cowboy hat (really how original!), but his suit was amazing!  All along the lapel and down the front of the jacket were these tiny lights.  They were even along the cuffs of his jacket.  But wait, the excitement doesn’t stop there…he also had tiny lights on the buttons on his tux shirt as well as on his bow tie!!  Pure class all the way.  Miss B astutely observed that one does not wear something like that and not expect questions.  So I pushed her (always the instigator) to go ask him about the batteries required for that suit.  He very abruptly answered her and we were on our way.  But I had no idea someone would wear that in public, in all seriousness. 

So maybe there actually is a way to properly combine glam and country…I think it’s called tacky.

Signs, signs, everywhere signs
November 11, 2008

…blocking up the scenery, breaking my mind.

So I’ve recently been given some signs, some have been much more obvious, but for the first time I’ve been paying closer attention to them.  I really think that it has helped me make a more positive turn in my life.   And fits much closer to Sally’s new purpose this year.

So, I encourage everyone to open up your eyes and see the signs.  Don’t push them aside to see the scenery.   Take a minute to open your mind to something funny, coincidental, or just plain obvious.  Then you can go back to the scenery.  And, it’s ok, long-haired, freaky people are allowed to apply!

Happy Halloween!
November 1, 2008

My office has this big Halloween party every year, complete with games, contests, prizes, food, costumes, and other fun. I didn’t dress up, but I did decide to bake a dessert. I baked a Halloween checkerboard cake and I think it was pretty successful. It was 3rd place in the baking contest!

The biggest challenge to the cake was getting the orange color in the batter. I fortunately found some neon orange food coloring and crossed my fingers. In case anyone’s wondering what a checkerboard cake is or how you make one, I remembered to take my camera along.

First you make up two different types of batter.

I chose chocolate and a golden butter mix. Then I added the food coloring to the golden butter recipe.

Then you use this handy device to put the batter into the pans, alternating the batter as you go.

I baked up the cake layers, but still had some batter left over for some cupcakes.

Then I assembled the cake and frosted it.

The icing I bought to decorate the cake just wasn’t working the way I wanted. I bought something else the day of the party and decorated it in my office. I was going for the theme-appropriate baking!

And here’s the best part, and why it’s called a checkerboard cake!

It was very yummy if I do say so myself. I still have some left over, so come by and get a piece!

Happy Halloween!