Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Sucky vs. awesome things

I'm feeling cranky tonight so I wanted to do some pros and cons.

Things that suck:
  • Having an ear infection that won't go away.
  • My stupid job being ambiguous about some nasty changes heading our way.
  • Forgetting to go to the allergist today, especially since she's going on vacation for a few weeks.
  • The mess that is my house. (Won't someone come over and clean?)
Things that are awesome:
  • Penny's new harness that I got at Trixie + Peanut
  • New York City's restaurant week (Lunch at Le Cirque tomorrow!)
  • Dinner tonight: Salad made from locally grown and organic veggies, topped with some white balsamic vinegar, feta cheese and spicy olives. Followed by some vanilla yogurt with fresh blueberries.
  • Anthony Bourdain - I just finished listening to Kitchen Confidential and have moved on to Medium Raw.
  • My friend Amy, who finished a half marathon last weekend!
  • Ace of Cake's 30 Rock-inspired Meat Cat cake and cheesy blasters.
  • Despicable Me, minions and "It's so fluffy!"

Ok, so I guess awesome wins this week!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Fireworks, farmers, vampires and Scotts

Happy July! I had an awesome time on the Fourth of July. I went to a barbecue followed and then we went to watch the fireworks over the Hudson River from my friends' apartment in a high rise.

The view and the show were pretty spectacular! I made this Arnold Palmer sangria for the party and it was pretty awesome, along with my hummus, which was a big hit, and some other stuff.

Here's the view from my friends' place. Pretty nice, huh? My dad actually lives in the building next door on the same floor, but I've haven't been over there yet. After all that, I went to hear my friends play at open mic and they were all pretty great.

I had another great week at work on the dayside. I'm really going to miss that shift. I just feel so much happier and less stressed out after this week. And it was nice to work the same hours everyday, which I haven't done in years. (I work three nights, two midshifts normally.) There's a lot of work to do on the dayside, but I still prefer it to the pressure of daily deadlines.

What else did I do this week? Oh yeah, I saw Eclipse. The movie is based on my favorite book in the Twilight saga and I think it was by far the best movie in the series. The acting was so much better and the story finally gave more screen time to the Cullen family and less to Bella's lame friends.

I also listened to my first audiobook - Craig Ferguson's American on Purpose. I've always thought audiobooks are cheating, but I heard one of Craig's guests talk about how much they liked all the impressions he does on the audio version. So I got the book from iTunes and thought it would be fun to listen to him tell his own story. And really, he killed me. The story is funny, crazy, touching. I loved it. I had been thinking about getting the book since I know my friend Becky loved it and because I got tickets to see him in October! I'm super excited.

Since I've been getting up early all week, I decided to keep the momentum going today and asked Randi if she wanted to go check out some farmers markets. The first one we stopped at was in Rutherford. It was really a farm stand. But the people were really nice and even gave us some free corn. Then we went out to Montclair where it was more of a market with so much good stuff! I came home with some peaches, blueberries, tomatoes, home-made pierogies, pickles and olives. Yum! We also sampled some home-made doughnuts and honey sticks. It had been really painfully hot all week, but the weather was much cooler today, making our little trip even nicer.

Tonight, I'm going to a sweet sixteen party for my cousin Corinne. She's the baby of my first cousins and I can't believe she's so grown up. I'm on duty as the photographer.

Here the only thing I scrapped this week - a page I did this week featuring my cute little nephew in his first portraits. His dad is a Cowboy's fan so my mom got him some cute team gear.

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Summer Lovin'

I have had a really great week. I worked the day shift all week and just loved it. It was so nice to drive home while it was still light out and have time to cook, relax or hang out. My sister came over yesterday and we had a lot of fun grilling in the yard and having some drinks. Today, we went to NYC to get our hair cuts. And on our way to have some lunch at the Shake Shack (where you have to wait on a long line for a really great burger!), we found a street fair. So today was pretty awesome, too.

Check out my hair... It's so short and curly!

Since I'm in such a good mood, I thought I'd share some of the things I just love this summer.

Cold-Brewed Coffee: I am so addicted to cold-brewed ice coffee! It just tastes so rich and yummy. I take two big cups with me to work now since they've closed our cafeteria and I'm trying to save some money. It's so easy to make. Just use 1 part coffee, 4 parts water. I use about 3 cups of coffee, add water and let it sit overnight in a big pitcher. Then I run it through my coffee pot - without turning it on to filter out the coffee grinds. The coffee mixture is very concentrated so I fill about 1/3 of my cup with coffee and fill the rest with water and some milk.

Grapefruit Margaritas: I discovered this drink thanks to Jen Caputo. I made them for my sister and her friend last night and they loved it too. I might make myself one tonight!

Food Network and Cooking: Randi has me hooked on the Food Network and Top Chef so I've been really inspired to cook lately. In addition to the drinks I just mentioned, I've been making more of my own food, bringing dinner or lunch to work, and shopping at Whole Foods. Some of my favorite new recipies are this awesome white bean and eggplant hummus, which we also snacked on last night, this pasta salad with mozzarella and salami, and these rosemary ranch chicken kabobs, which is actually a recipe I found over at the Lily Pad forum. Good stuff!

Taking Penny Out: I'm trying to not be so lazy and walk Penny more. We took a nice walk at the park recently.

Hanging out with my friends: There's been lots of fun at open mic and karaoke. My friend Tony has started playing at open mic and he's really good. We had another little high school reunion a few weeks ago, too.

And since I got out early from work this week, I got to watch the new Grease sing-a-long at Pier A Park in Hoboken. I jumped on the light rail after work and was there in a few minutes. I met up with Pam and Eric and we spent the evening on the waterfront singing along with everyone in the park and enjoying the view!

Reading: I almost died laughing Chelsea Handler's Are You There Vodka? It's Me Chelsea and I just started Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang. Don't read these if you're easily offended!

Movies: This has been a pretty lame summer as far as movies go. Most summers, I'm at the movies every weekend, but the movies aren't doing it for me this year. So far I've seen Iron Man 2 (eh OK), Sex and the City 2 (lame!), Shrek 3 (funny) and Toy Story 3 - just plain awesome. Bring some tissues!

Vampires: See my last post! True Blood is on TV and I need to go see Eclipse!

These Owls...
How cute are they???? I made them using an American Girl kit like I did with my iPod case. :) Super easy to make. I have another set that's a purple bear. I'm going to give them to my nieces.

This frame:
I bought this ages ago and finally got some prints for it! I love seeing it in my room with lots of my favorite people!

Tiger Lilies: They look so nice in my yard! Our yard it pretty messy, but the flowers look nice.

So that's summer so far! I am working day side again next week and then another week in August. That's almost as good as a vacation! I hope you all have a great Fourth of July! And please leave a comment to let me know what you're loving about summer!