*Yes we have 600 books not including poetry. yes we are dorks.
Thursday, December 30, 2010
*Yes we have 600 books not including poetry. yes we are dorks.
Thursday, December 23, 2010
One of the things I really look forward to at Christmas, now that I am an adult, is helping to plan and cook Christmas eve dinner. Generally we spend Christmas eve with my mom and step father and the evening festivities center around an elaborate and over the top menu. My mom, sister and I research, plan and discuss to our hearts content. Then we cook, cook and cook, which is of course followed by much eating. Two years ago we did a pasta course, last year we made a prime rib, which was amazing, and this year...this year we are doing a southern dinner. On the menu:
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
*hello...do we all remember Tristan
*you know you are missing the classics, like Johny Tsunami, Picture Perfect and Smart House
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
for organizing. I know I know you are still thinking about gingerbread cookies, last minute Christmas gifts and what to wear on Christmas eve. And to some extent I am too. But I'm also thinking about post Christmas organizing. I'm sure you've already started receiving those January magazines in the mail with their picture perfect offices and linen closets that manage to both inspire and infuriate* you at the same time. I both love and hate this time of year. On the one hand I love the idea of organization. I love the idea of everything in it's place, of colorful file folders with whimsical labels and coordinating office supplies. But in reality my life is organized chaos at best. This year, however, is different. We, Chris and I, are determined to organize our lives. Which as of late have been less than organized. And this past month the lack of organization has lead to multiple fights. As Chris starts up a law practice, we are suddenly dealing with many complicated student loans, he's dealing with VA paperwork, I'm trying to deal with household paperwork and I'm working many more hours the old system (fragile at best) has collapsed. Last weekend when I was looking for articles on organizing household paper work I found this blog post. It has already helped me. It's simple, clear and effective.
I also found this, which overall sounds a little much but has, I think, a really brilliant component, a book for lists, ideas, and whatever. As I was reading this and thinking about it I remembered that in college I had a similar book it was for all of my philosophy notes and ideas. All class notes, reading notes, ideas for papers, outlines, questions, books to read, thinkers to look up, and other random notes lived in one black book that went everywhere with me. I think I need to re-introduce my this into my system. Right now what I have is a very fragmented system for keeping track of things, a lot is on my computer, a lot is in loose leaf papers floating around my desk and purse, and a lot is just living in my brain waiting to be forgoten. But how great is one book, half can be work related and half can be personal. There will be a section for to do lists, goals, notes, lists of books to read, things to look up, presents I want*, even my budget and financial planning could be pasted it. While these two ideas won't fix the chaos that is my life by themselves they are big steps in the right direction. What about you? What are your "organizing your life" tips?
*I mean really! no body's linen closet is that perfect and it is just plain rude to suggest to an overburdened overworked stressed out woman that hers should be
*I don't know about you but everyday of the year until the month of my birthday/Christmas I can think of 30 things i want, but the day a parent/sibling/husband asks what i want i become clueless. so I've started keeping a list.
*image found here
Monday, December 20, 2010
In recent years though my TV habits have been growing. But my reading has continued, in 2009 despite having cable for most of the year I still read 25 books. So what happened now? I have finished a sum total of 3 book since I started my new job 10 weeks ago and all three have been chick lit. How do I find the right balance where I can still put so much energy into work but not turn into mush at home? I have to say that the more I think about this trend the more concerned I am. What happens when we want to have children? when we buy our own house and have to take care of it? I guess in the short term I need to make more of an effort to sit down and read a book.
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
So here are some Thursday thoughts:
I love Chinese food. As much as I love all food I'm pretty sure I could live on Chinese food and tacos and be a happy camper.
I am looking forward to going to my Mom's house tonight to eat tacos and watch Love Actually.
I used to hate The Office, I didn't think it was funny and Michael just stressed me out, but it has wormed it's way into my heart and now I love it.
We once again have no Internet or cable. We temporarily had Internet but once again decided against it. There is something really refreshing about coming home to no Internet or TV. It forces you to interact, read, walk, clean house, visit with friends and so on.
Don't get me wrong we still watch TV. We check out TV shows from the library. Right now we are watching Myth Busters, The Office, Cheers, and Gilmore Girls (I am, Mr. P refuses).
I am adjusting to my job. I still love it and find it stressful, but I feel like I am returning bit by bit to my normal home life. I'm reading more, picking up more, walking. This is good. For the first couple of months it was just work work work collapse.
I found my dream couch at crate and barrel this weekend then almost started crying when the sales girl told me it was being discontinued. So sad.
I am having a really hard time getting into the Christmas spirit this year. I honestly feel like it is just one more thing I have to do. And I am having a hard time focusing on the true holiday. This is really sad, I know. I'm not even sending out Christmas cards this year. I am however looking forward Christmas Eve service and getting out of town for a few days.
Tomorrow is the third day in a row I have to be at work by 7am. Needless to say, I am super excited for Saturday and some extra sleep!
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Monday, November 22, 2010
I can't believe it's already Thanksgiving. Time has flown by. I am looking forward to a long weekend and some quality time with my husband. We are going to spend the holiday with his family in Walla Walla, Washington.
The weather has turned really cold here. The low tonight is 27 and it's supposed to start snowing around midnight. Tomorrow's high is 31 with a low of 18 degrees. I'm not happy. Our house, while delightful in the summer, is an icebox come winter. It was built in the 1940's and has little to no insulation. It also has it's original single pane windows and no central heat. We do have a wood stove which helps. We also bought some ceramic heaters at Costco which work really well to heat up one room. Saturday afternoon we got home from doing something and the house was so cold we just turned the heater on in our room and got into bed. We spent the entire afternoon in bed reading, napping and watching TV.
Friday, November 19, 2010
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Monday, November 15, 2010
If you are in need of a good junk food night I highly recommend a foray into epic nacho making. This is my sister's invention. She would want me to tell you that to do epic nachos the right way you must use Doritos. I however opt for regular tortilla chips. Line a baking sheet with tortilla chips, top with cheese, add a layer of re-fried beans and cooked ground beef, another layer of cheese and bake at 350 for 15 minutes. Top with lettuce, sour cream, salsa, hot sauce and guacamole and enjoy.
For really gourmet nachos you can make your own re-fried beans:
Bring 2 cups dried pinto beans, one onion chopped and water to cover to boil. Boil 2 minutes. cover and let soak at least 1.5 hours but up to 8 hours. Add more water if necessary to recover. Add one bay leaf, ham hock or salt pork (optional) and bring to boil. Simmer 2 hours until tender. In another pan melt 1/4-1/2 cup of lard. With slotted spoon remove beans and add to hot pan of lard reserving cooking liquid. Let fry a minute or so then begin mashing. As you mash add cooking liquid and salt. Mash until you have right consistency. Salt to taste.
*I understand you may think lard is disgusting. However, lard is a very misunderstood food. Don't knock it till you try it. Also, every decent authentic Mexican restaurant makes re-fried beans with lard. That is why they are so yummy!
Sunday, November 14, 2010
I adore makeup especially lip color and eye shadow. I have long been a fan of red lipstick but it definitely has it's challenges. While generally red looks great with my skin tone I have be very careful that the shade is just right. And since I work in a very traditional professional setting I have to be careful that my red lipstick isn't too much for day to day meetings and such. Lately I have had a really hard time striking the right balance with my lip color and so in an exasperated mood one day at target I grabbed a bunch of different reddish lip color to try. I now have three amazing products to report!
1. For a classic red matte I highly recommend Sonia Kashuk Sheer Rosebud luxury lip color. It's a great shade. For a long lasting color I recommend applying, dusting your lips with face powder, applying a second time and then blotting. The blotting tones it down just enough to give that classic matte look. it's very 1950's and classic. Yet, it isn't to dark for everyday.
2. Jemma Kidd High Shine silk lip gloss is the perfect red lip gloss. It's a vibrant fun color perfect for Friday night. It lasts a long time and it isn't sticky or too thick. I chose the color rose and have been very pleased.
3. By far the greatest find of the month and perhaps the year is this product, Maybelline New York color sensation lip stain in cherry pop. This stuff is amazing. It looks like a marker. The pointy tip is ideal for outlining your lips. It's a nice light red distinct yet subtle. Once on it stays for a very long time. I have worn this everyday since I got it. Sometimes by itself but more often underneath one aforementioned. Last night I went out wearing the lip stain under the lip gloss, had dinner and dessert, came home late, didn't wash off my makeup and woke up with cherry red lips. It's perfect for work because I can go all day without touching up my lipstick. It even lasts through meals and kissing!
How about you? Any sensation make up finds lately?
Monday, November 8, 2010
We had a Halloween party which was fabulous. I was a 1950's housewife.
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
What are your thoughts on gallery walls? Do you have one?
Monday, October 4, 2010
Fall is definitely here. Temperatures are starting to fall at night and the slugs and snails have returned to wreak havoc upon our garden. It was for this reason that I decided to make chow chow yesterday afternoon. I had some of this wonderful green tomato relish in Tennessee a couple of years ago and have been wanted to make it ever since. By far the best chow chow I had was at Martha's at the Plantation, at Belle Meade. Sadly Martha's has since closed but lucky for me I have the cookbook which has her amazing chow chow recipe. Because one kitchen project is just not enough for a Sunday afternoon I also embarked upon a huge pot of warm comfy fall soup for lunches this week, and while I was at it dinner also simmered on the stove.
Tomatoes from our garden turning red
Successfully canned chow chow
My favorite easy pasta, roasted red pepper and sausage pasta.
This is a great pasta recipe that I came up with a few years ago when my Mom bought me a huge package of Italian sausage at Costco.
Roasted Red Pepper and Sausage Pasta
3 links of Italian sausage, casing removed
1 onion chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 cup roasted red peppers chopped up
4 sprigs fresh thyme
1/2 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
2 cans tomatoes, or 4 cups fresh tomatoes chopped or combination
1/2 cup broth, red wine, or water
pasta of your choice
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
Heat olive oil in pan, when hot add sausage and onion. Break up sausage while it cooks, when sausage is mostly brown add garlic, cook a few more minutes breaking up sausage. Add broth or wine, scrape all bits of bottom of pan, season with salt and pepper. Add tomatoes, roasted peppers, herbs and pepper flakes. Bring to boil, reduce to simmer, simmer 30-40 minutes. Add more broth or water if sauce gets too thick. Cook pasta according to directions, top with sauce and serve with Parmesan cheese. Enjoy!
Thursday, September 30, 2010
I wore it for the first time today and it is fabulous! It fits wonderfully, looks amazing and is comfortable. The tucked waist and ribbon waistband gives it a really great edge without detracting from it's professionalism. And the grey tweed fabric is versatile enough for a lot of wear. Ann Taylor Loft is continuing their fall sale in store and online making this a great deal if you are in need of some new work clothes this fall.