Saturday, January 16, 2010

Title Unknown

Last night I co-hosted an event downtown. I didn't expect to be a co-host but I got an email from the original host-who I've met several times-asking me to jump in just in case she was late. Well, she was and so for about a half hour I had to greet people and make small talk. It wasn't all that bad and when she got there, I just sat back and enjoyed myself. So that was good. The place we went to brews their own beer. I have to admit that this doesn't really make me super excited because it's always so hard to figure out what kind of beer you want. Unless of course, you order this:


I did not order that. However the host did and she liked it very much. She also got these two large soft pretzels that they serve with a spinach cheese sauce. It was so good, I could have bathed in it. I really thought about canceling my order and getting those for dinner. But I didn't. Instead, I got a nice juicy burger and fries. It was oh so delicious and the conversation was fun too. After a few hours, we broke off and went our separate ways. It was a good night.

I parked in my old neighborhood-well, a few blocks up, but pretty much where I used to live. It's right on the T line and I didn't want to worry about parking downtown. The minute I stepped outside I missed living there. The sounds, the smells...it was sort of sad. It's such a vibrant place always filled with excitement and life. When I got on the T though, I remembered the annoying parts-like annoying kids who don't think about anyone but themselves and packing in like sardines having to smell the smelly guys or listen to drunk college students singing at the top of their lungs. Yes, I loved it there, but I think if I ever live in Boston again, it would be in a more grown up area.

You might remember that my goal for this weekend is to do pretty much nothing. I want and need to relax and recoup and get myself organized again. My day started out good-I managed to sleep until 10am. I know I slept well because I when I looked in the mirror I had a big crease running down my cheek letting me know I didn't toss and turn much. I probably would have slept later but I got woken up by a text message from the widower. I did not reply. But that's a story for another day...

So my relaxing day started out well but ended with me being out until 7pm. To be fair to myself, I did go to see Avatar (loved it!). But I pretty much sucked at staying home and doing nothing.
I went to IKEA to pick up some pillow covers and hooks for my jewelry. Let me tell you, it's really hard to believe we are in a recession. People were out in flocks buying carts full of expensive things. It's amazing. When I went to check out, I smiled....

You know how I love the hot dog! I did not get one though because I did get a cinnamon bun. If you haven't had one, you really need to rush out to your local IKEA and get one. Oh, man...they are so good. It was the best $1 I've spent in ages.

I'm home now. I picked up dinner from my favorite Indian restaurant here in town and am committed to doing nothing. I have my book and my wine and candles are lit, Bella's in my lap and my phone is on vibrate. That sounds dirty, like I'm planning on using it for something but really it's just so that stupid widower guy doesn't call me and interrupt my relaxation.

And...I'm out.

Friday, January 15, 2010

He's Not A Man, He's A Loving Machine

To those of you who ever questioned why I stayed so long, why I kept the hope alive or why I overlooked certain things, please see below. This is an actual email I had in my inbox tonight when I got home...

Hi XXXXX,

I am single for 5 years. Are you serious single?. I live in Brooklyn, New York. I tell honest you I do like you now. If You think you feel like good match agree me. I am sorry bother you ?.


Ike

If you're a the praying kind, please pray for a nice, normal man to fall in love with me!

Jockomo feena nay.

Don't Need No Short Short Man


I'm writing this post remotely so I'm not quite sure which picture will post first-but I laughed this morning when I woke up and looked at my nightstand. It looks like I am having a love affair with the world's smallest man. This is not the case-this is a finger condom, as we called them in culinary school. I've been having trouble getting some dry skin to heal so the doctor suggested I keep it wrapped at night. This is what I use to keep the lotion on...but left on the nightstand, it looks rather funny, I think.

Anyway, it made me chuckle when I woke up. I assure you that while some of the men I've been with have been less than...large...this thumb size would not do.

Enough information for a Friday? :)

The other picture is how I am wearing my hair today. I decided to give myself a treat last night after cooking and I bought myself a new hairdryer. This one has a diffuser, which helps my wavy hair problem on days I do not want to straighten it. Trouble is, the diffuser takes just as long. But I really like the outcome. I added a few curls with the iron, too, to give that beachy look that's sort of popular these days. So far, I've gotten 4 compliments on how it looks today-and I've only been here 24 minutes. (I also bumped into the hot guy on my floor-score!)

Do you have any fun plans for the long weekend (if you have a long weekend). Tonight I am going out for dinner and drinks in Boston. Then I have nothing planned until Monday when I'm hosting a brunch. I am going to try my hardest not to do anything except I already know I have to do laundry, dishes and fold clothes. I also want to finish the painting once and for all-but that's an hour job, tops. But after that-nothing!

I know I'm kidding myself...but truthfully, I really need to slow myself down. Happy Friday!!!!!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Get It Together (Wo)Man!

I have got to get my act together.  Every now and then I get into a groove (rut?) where I can't seem to be "put together".  This is not just with my outfits, hair and fashion though when I get into this mode I feel ugly and sloppy.  It also has to do with being disorganized, hurried and often times, frustrated.  With everything.  It starts out with something small-like not doing the dishes one night-and ends up with a full out messy life.  Typically there is a breaking point where I end up throwing myself whole hearted into "Operation: Clean Up" mode where I work and work and work until I'm so tired, but organized.  I feel good about myself and my life during these times.  It's a feeling of being in control, and that's a good place to be.

I'm so not there right now.

I'm waking up late which usually translates into me not doing my hair.  This always means I feel ugly.  My hair is naturally wavy and I feel gross when it's left to do its thing.  It often frizzes and it's just not good.  I like my hair smooth and flippy and it's something I get compliments on all of the time, so I know it's nice.  But it takes at least 20 minutes for me to blow it dry, and when I'm late, I just don't have that kind of time.  Another thing I do is shower without washing my hair.  It's not great to wash it everyday anyway, but it drives my crazy when I do this.  I feel itchy and gross and I feel like everyone knows that I've not washed it. (Truth be told though, these are the days I get the most compliments on my hair.)  I do it because the day before I did my hair, and therefore, it looks pretty good.  In any case, I hate it.

Waking up late also means my bedroom quickly becomes a war zone.  Currently, every sweater I own is on the floor.  This happened yesterday morning when I was late.  I couldn't find the sweater I wanted to wear so I had to change my outfit.  One sweater got stuck and the rest tumbled out.  I was so angry and frustrated that I picked them up and threw them to the ground.  They remain there now and most likely will until this weekend.  (Though my neighbor just asked if I'll be home later so that he can give me some steaks...this means they'll probably come inside.  Which means I might end up cleaning tonight when I get home.)

By the time I get on the road to work, I'm flustered and feeling bad about myself.  I feel gross (see above) and disheveled and hungry and tired.  I stop to get coffee and a bagel and feel bad about spending this money and eating that food.  I almost always end up spilling the coffee on myself because of course, I always seem to have tons of things in my hands on the way into the office.

And then the computer is slow.

So...you see?  I need to get it together.  I need to step back and review the situation and take back my organized self.  And then I need to work harder at not letting that one thing slide...whatever it might be.  Because when one little thing slides, everything else goes downhill. 

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Randomivity

I hate when you sit down on a toilet and the seat is warm from someone else's butt.

Here's a dating tip: If you are not ready for a committed relationship, don't waste my effing time.

I like the term "On the lam".  Even though it doesn't have a good meaning.  On the lam...it's fun.

My friend's husband is quite quirky.  He hurt his finger at work and was embarrassed about it.  To cover up the bandages when they had company over he wore a single black glove.  And he was surprised when people asked why he was wearing it.

I got asked out on a date this morning via text message.  This is the tall guy.  We spoke a couple of times and he's very nice but I don't think he's ready to seriously date.  If I didn't mention this, he is a widower.  I'm flattered and it did make me smile, but...I'm not sure I want to get involved with someone who is so obviously not ready.

I set a goal for myself yesterday that I was going to go to bed by 10pm.  This was going to happen because The Dad was supposed to be home and I'd get to leave early.  When I got to the house, The Mom told me that The Dad decided to stay away for the night and that I'd have to stay later.  I didn't get home until 9:30. 

Yes, I was pissed.  Not at The Mom, who was also pissed, but that The Dad just feels like he can make this decision and that he can stay away from his family so much.

I am SO looking forward to this upcoming long weekend.  I really do not want to do anything.  I have dinner plans Friday night and then nothing else.  I don't want to go anywhere, do any shopping, paint...nothing.  And yet, I know this will not happen.

Supper club this month is at my house.  This month's theme: Burgers.  My friend Lenny is bringing a grill.  It should be extra fun.  I'm making milkshakes for dessert.

I've been stalking someone in Chicago for a couple of years-actually, I've been stalking a couple.  They've cute and they're heavily involved in the Improv scene...I wanted to see her show but she's not performing, so instead, Saturday night, I think I'm going to see his.  Is that creepy?  I'd love to meet them, but I won't mention it that I'm going...that would be creepy.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Toosdae ?'s

I mentioned that this weekend my family and I went shopping at Macy's and that I did not purchase a new hat/scarf because even with the 40% off they each came to about $35.  I just could not justify that purchase, especially because it was a mass produced item.  I still needed a new hat though.  I asked my friend if she thought I could knit a hat (she said yes) but truthfully, I didn't want to add another project to my life right now.  The next best thing, I thought, was to find someone else to knit a hat for me!  Enter Etsy...the wonderful site that allows those of us with a craft to sell our goods.  I decided on the hat you see above-but in a darker gray...sort of charcoal.  I'm so excited because it's exactly what I wanted, but it's handmade and less expensive than the one at Macy's.  And she guaranteed that I'll get it by the time I leave for my trip.  Oh!  AND I get a free headband thingy which had a cute (detachable) flower.  Pretty sweet deal, I'd say...what do you think?

Now that I've rambled your eyes off, take a look at this week's Toosdae ?'s.  If you feel inclined, answer 'em!

1.  If you could live in any home on a TV show, which one would you pick?

2.  What is the longest you've gone without sleep?

3.  If you could go to Walt Disney World with any celebrity alive today, who would you choose?

1.  For some reason the only shows I can think of right now are the ones I watched when I was little...and so the toss up was between the Cosby Show and Growing Pains.  A couple of weeks ago I watched Cougar Town and Courtney Cox's character seems to have a really nice house.  So those would be my answers.

2.  Days.  I can't remember exactly but I've had strings of days where I just couldn't sleep.  I've had bought of insomnia for as long as I can remember, so going without sleep sadly, is something I'm all too familiar with.  The longest I've gone without sleep on purpose is 24 hours.

3.  Because I'm such a Disney freak and turn into a kid when I get there, I think I'd like to go with someone  young.  I think maybe Michael Cera would be fun.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Babble On

I have a good friend who's very kind and sweet and he always seems to know just what to say to make me feel better. He values me as a person and generally goes out of his way to let me know he cares. I'm leery to say this these days, but I feel like I can count on him when the going gets rough and he'll be there. We talk about our dates and the people we're meeting online and when I start to feel bad about myself he tells me how great I am and how any man would be lucky to have me. I realize that perhaps this might mean he sort of likes me, but I also realize that he genuinely believe this, and for that reason, it makes me feel good.

He's the good friend I talked about in last weeks post when I told you all about the guy who didn't know much about me after a month of chatting. Last night I received an email from that guy because I blocked him from seeing me on IM. He mentioned that he hasn't seen me online lately and that he'd love to chat soon. I wrote back telling him that I am sorry, but I am no longer interested in chatting with him. When he asked me why, I told him. He replied that I was wrong, that he was very interested in getting to know me and that he's got a lot going on, that he's talking to other people and that he's sorry if he can't remember every word I said.

What an ass. I wrote back-only because it sort of pissed me off that he was implying I wanted him to remember everything about me-and told him that we all have things going on and that I too am talking to other people...but after a month of chatting he should have been able to tell me what I do for a living and at least a few things that I liked...which he could not do. He wrote back again saying that he learned lots about me and told me once more I was wrong. I didn't write back, but I wonder why, if he knows so much about me, he didn't tell me these things when I asked him.

*sigh* Is it so wrong to want someone to actually pretend to be interested in who I am as a person? For someone to ask me questions about my life just as I ask them? There are guys out there like that, right?

Yesterday my parents, my sister and my niece came to visit me for the first time. I was so excited to show them my new place. You know how hard I worked on the place, and I'm really proud of it. My Mom didn't even have anything bad to say about it!! That's a huge deal. :) Dinner was lovely. I had hummus and green olives with homemade pita chips for munchies while I was making the pasta-which went over very well. Rye Bread even ate it! I got a loaf of bread from a local baker and that too, was delicious. For dessert I made a lemon pudding cake with blueberry sauce. It's a very lowfat dessert with loads of flavor. Sort of like an angel food cake with pudding under it. It's awesome. I make it for The Family all of the time and they love it. It's the first time I've had leftovers and while I like it better warm, it's pretty darned good cold too. I'll share the recipe with you guys sometime soon. Really easy to make too.

After dinner we went shopping. My sister wanted to get paint for her bathroom (I picked up more white paint to finish the living room once and for all) and my Mom wanted to go to Macy's to buy a baby gift for one of my Dad's employees. I wanted to pick up a new scarf and hat for my Chicago trip but sadly, the prices were still too high. I found a really cute gray knit hat with matching scarf but the total was over $60! I might be naive but that just seems way too expensive. Of course my Dad offered to buy it for me, but I declined. It's always hard to mention things around my Dad b/c he likes to buy us stuff and while I do enjoy being spoiled a bit, I hate that he always does this. I feel badly. Especially b/c he just lent me money for the down payment for my car. So I did not get warm weather gear...

I just learned that my good friend Morgen will be joining me for a night in Chicago! I am SO excited to spend time with my MoMo. It's been a little over a year since I've had a Mo hug and I'm about due!! So Friday night we'll hand out in the windy city and then Saturday I'll spend the day with Melisa from Suburban Scrawl. I've chatted with her on the phone once (when she helped me with some marketing ideas for the cafe that never was) and have been reading her blog for a while. She's a super cool chick and I'm so excited to be meeting her in person. This trip, I believe, will be a giant blast of fun.

Making new memories...it's what I'm all about this year!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

What's Cookin? Pasta w/ Roasted Cauliflower! (or) Family Visit


Today my parents, sister and niece are coming to see my new apartment and to have lunch. Because I have room for them again, I decided that instead of going out, I'm going to cook and we'll eat here. This is what makes living outside of the city worth it...being able to have people over for dinner and for parties. It's fantastic.

About a month ago I was very busy and so I asked The Family to pick 3 recipes for me to cook for them. I didn't have time to create a menu for that week and had even less time to make an ingredient list. When I got to their house I found the recipes and was very worried about one of them. It had roasted cauliflower (which I love), tomatoes and spinach. It sounded so incredibly bland. But when I looked deeper into the recipe, I saw crispy prociutto, cheese and garlic. The resulting dish was so flavorful and delicious, I kept it for myself. It's what I'm making for my family today when they get here. Below is the recipe. It's all over the internet, too, so their last private chef clearly googled it, but I'm OK with that...

Pasta with Roasted Cauliflower, Arugula & Prociutto

Ingredients:
Kosher salt
One-half medium head cauliflower, cored and cut into 3/4-inch florets (3-1/2 cups)
1 pint grape tomatoes
3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
9 large fresh sage leaves
4 large cloves garlic, peeled
6 thin slices prosciutto (about 4 oz.)
12 oz. dried orecchiette
5 oz. baby arugula (5 lightly packed cups)
3/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and heat the oven to 425°F. Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil.

Toss the cauliflower, tomatoes, oil, 3/4 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper on a rimmed baking sheet; spread in a single layer. Roast, stirring once or twice, until the cauliflower begins to turn golden and tender, about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, pulse the sage and garlic in a food processor until minced. Add the prosciutto and pulse until coarsely chopped. Once the cauliflower is golden, toss the herb mixture into the vegetables and continue to roast until fragrant and the cauliflower is golden brown, 5 to 7 minutes.

Boil the orecchiette until al dente, 9 to 10 minutes. Reserve 1 cup pasta-cooking water. Drain the pasta and return it to the pot. Stir in the roasted cauliflower mixture, arugula, cheese, and enough pasta water to moisten. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Photo by Me
From Fine Cooking 96, pp. 115a
October 24, 2008