Birthday happenings

>> Saturday, January 31, 2009

So yesterday I turned 30. It didn't hurt a bit, much to my surprise. In fact, I had a pretty good day. On Thursday, I got my hair done and even got a free mani! How could I say no to that? Then, on Friday, I was shopping and redeemed my coupon for free birthday lip glosses from Sephora. They were actually colors that I can wear, too! That night, Jason came home with red roses and we went to my favorite sushi place to eat dinner together. Afterward, we went to The Cheesecake Factory and stuffed ourselves silly with cheesecake. Jason had a carrot cake cheesecake (which was more cake, actually) and I had a nice fluffy vanilla bean cheesecake. Yum! To end the night, we went to see Taken at the movies. It was a great night! There will be more festivities tonight! :)

Oh, and Taken was good. It was kind of "formula", but I still enjoyed it. It's worth seeing in the theater. I guess just about any movie I see now just won't hold up to Gran Torino. I had to remember this as I was watching it!


Husbands & Calendars Don't Mix

>> Thursday, January 29, 2009

Last night, Jason & I were about to go to bed and I said something about my birthday being Friday. This results in the following discussion:

J: "No, your birthday is Saturday. That's why we're doing dinner that day."
Me: "No, my birthday is Friday. Today is the 28th. You know my birthday is the 30th."
J: "I know when your birthday is! Today is the 27th!"
Me: "No it's not. It's the 28th."
J: "But you said your birthday fell on a weekend this year!"
Me: "It does. It's on a Friday."
J: "Friday's not a weekend! Saturday is the weekend!"
Me: "Friday is a weekend. Work ends at 5."
J: "Well, I'm glad you said something. Otherwise, I would've felt really bad if I let the whole day go by and not have said anything to you."
Me: "You'd have felt bad! What about me?!?"

So I now know that not only does my husband never look at a calendar, but that I also must be specific on my weekend days. For crying out loud!


An unproductive day

>> Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Apparently yesterday's productive day wore me out, so I didn't do anything today (aside from my normal workout) but watch movies. I watched A Walk To Remember & The Notebook which induced the longest cry-fest I've ever had to date. It was great!


A productive day!

>> Tuesday, January 27, 2009

With only 9 days until our ski trip, I decided that I should go shopping for my ski jacket. The problems I have run into thus far are:

A. This is San Antonio and there aren't too many places that sell ski jackets whose prices aren't horribly overinflated.
B. I've never been skiing so I'm not sure if I will like it.
C. I didn't want to spend a lot of money on something that won't get used a lot.
D. Most ski jackets are ugly.
E. I have monkey arms and most coats aren't made to fit them.

I have been on a quest to find a cute jacket that I will actually like. My husband informs me that cuteness is not a factor on a ski slope because no one cares about how they look. I beg to differ but even if what he says is true, I plan to break that mold. Ha!

A few weeks ago, I tried on a North Face coat and it fit my long monkey arms. Unfortunately, it was $300 which was quite a bit more than I wanted to spend. So I searched eBay high and low, but I couldn't really find a good deal on such short notice. I had already been shopping at Academy and tried on some Columbia coats, but said monkey arm problem reared it's ugly head....and my wrists and a couple inches of my arms. On to today.

For some reason, I decided to stop at Academy again but in a different location. They had a lot more ski jackets and everything ski related turned out to be 30% off! So, I decided to try a Polar Edge jacket and guess what? It fit my monkey arms! Hooray! And to top it off, it wasn't completely ugly. So how much did I pay for this? $70! Not too bad considering it even has a pocket for my iPod and a removable jacket. I think I can live with this for a while. Here's what I bought:

So, I am now almost prepared to leave in 9 days for Colorado. But I'm not done yet people!

The other super productive thing I did today was buy a pair of jeans. I have been looking for quite a while and the problems I discovered have been:

1. I have monkey legs that are generally too long for any pair of pants on the planet.
2. I have an ox butt and a greyhound waist which is an evil combination.
3. This combination usually causes me to throw my arms in the air while kneeling on the floor screaming, "Why?!? Why?!?" Okay, just kidding. That was an exaggeration.

Actually, that was a bald-faced lie. Disclaimer: I like to do that sometimes.

So today I happened to stop over at Nordstrom to check out what they had in stock. I picked up one pair of jeans that looked long and the salesgirl brought me another pair that she thought I might like. I tried on her pair first and they were long! She had given me a pair of Seven jeans bootcut in a long length. She said it was the only Seven jean they carried in the longer length and I fell in love. My booty was contained and my waist was hugged. I took those suckers straight to the register and paid for them without even asking how much they were. Any pair of jeans that I love that much are truly priceless!

Oh, and in case any of you were wondering how I have been feeling, I have been MUCH better. I guess crying to your mom and blogging it out help the blues. I now plan to celebrate with gusto!


Cassius Update!

>> Friday, January 23, 2009

Cassius had a follow-up with his vet yesterday and..........we got great news! His kidney values are now normal! We suspected this since he has been acting like his normal self. About 10pm every night, he races up and down the stairs, then jumps up on the balcony and swats at things that only he can see. We finally found a cat food that he likes and he's eating like he used to. The only problem with a cat that has kidney damage is the litter box. Our cat pees a gallon every other day. I'm constantly filling his water bowl and he's constantly emptying it back out. We're still giving him sub-Q injections twice a week, but that's okay. We'll take a little inconvenience if it means that our kitty is healthy. Hooray!


This is not about the inaugeration.

>> Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Nope, it's about me. I'm going to hijack my own blog to throw a pity party for myself. Relax, it won't take long and then I'll get back to my regular scheduled blogging.

In 10 days, I will turn 30. My friend Shana says it's my "Golden Birthday" because I turn 30 on the 30th. Bleh. I have never been so apathetic about my birthday before. I've always wanted to celebrate and throw some kind of party, but for some reason, I just can't get excited about it this year. I've been close to tears for almost 2 weeks or so and it's only getting worse. Talking about it makes me feel even more ridiculous than I thought I already was.

I suppose the mindset is that 30 is a mental milestone for me and I'm not quite where I thought I would be. Yes, I am married to a wonderful man, we have a beautiful home and I have fantastic friends and family. But career-wise, I'm in the gutter. I have bounced between different jobs trying to decide what I wanted to do with my life, but nothing has been appealing for long. I even went to grad school to gain more insight, but instead, I gained more confusion.

Now, with the crappy economy that we are in, finding any type of job - except burger-flipping - is really, really hard. I'm also stuck in-between experience levels. In some ways, I know I'm overqualified for so many jobs, but in other ways, I think I'm under qualified for the good jobs. It's a tough spot to be in. I think that this 30 milestone wouldn't be so hard for me if I was at least bringing in some income.

I called my Mom to talk to her (read: whine/cry) about the impending birthday. She said she cried about her 30th birthday, too for the same reasons. So maybe it's hereditary. I can blame it on my genes. I know that in a few weeks, I'll feel better, but I just can't get to that place soon enough. I just can't shake that crappy, low feeling.

I know that I need to do something for my birthday, but I still don't know what. If I let this day pass me by, I know that I will be upset and regret it, so I need to decide something soon. At first I thought I'd do something at the house, but now I'm not sure. But it better be good, that's all I know. Just for sheer embarrassment and to show how ridiculous I can get, here's pics from the last three birthdays:

This is probably my favorite dumb birthday pic. It's my 27th birthday back in 2006. There's Shauna, Shana & I, fairly inebriated and doing who knows what. I was obviously trying to karaoke to my own tune.

My 28th birthday was also filled with bar-hopping, but we were a little more responsible. This picture was taken at a restaurant. I think someone was trying to maim me with that candle.

And finally last year's 29th birthday had a somewhat princess theme (don't worry, it was short-lived):


Movie Review: Gran Torino

>> Saturday, January 17, 2009

This was by far, the best movie I've seen in a long, long time and possibly Clint Eastwood's best movie. A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. Go see it!!!!


Cutest thing ever!

>> Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Jason came home one day last week exhausted. He said he was going to go change and then come upstairs with me. I went to check on him and this is what I found:

Cassius was asleep too, but he heard me turn on the camera. Jason ended up taking a two hour nap that night!


Embarrassing public happenings

>> Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Jason came home from work today and decided that he wanted to go out to eat. I was fine with that idea. We decided to go to Rudy's, a local BBQ place. I know, I know....we're a classy kind of folk.

Anyway, this is the sort of place where you walk directly to the BBQ cookers/slicers and order from directly from them. They give you a large plastic tray that could hold two turkeys and a ham along with a week's supply of creamed corn. We order and then proceed into the dining room to fill our drinks. Jason is holding the food tray and fills his cup with tea. I'm behind right behind him filling my cup with tea.

Now comes the embarrassing part. Under the drinks are some rubber mats that are meant for drainage in case someone spills their drink. It looks like this, complete with two different sized circles:

Jason has now moved to the table and is setting the food down. I try to turn around, drink in hand, and discover that the heel of my boot is picking up the mat and is caught in the smaller hole. I put my boot back down and try to pick it up again. This time I lose my balance, spill my iced tea all over the napkins in my hands and the floor, and fall backwards onto a long ice "trough" filled with beer and sodas. Of course, there are plenty of people to witness the occurrence, but surprisingly, I heard no snickers. I would've laughed if it weren't me. Thank goodness the ice "trough" stopped my fall or I am afraid that I would have dented the cement floor with my head.

I spent the next 10 minutes at the table unable to function because the fall not only embarrassed me, but it also shook me up. No more high-heeled boots at Rudy's.



>> Monday, January 12, 2009

Has anyone heard the new Beyonce song, "If I Were A Boy?" I think it's such a whiny, whiny song. I guess it's such a drastic change from "Single Ladies" (which I love) that I just can't stand to listen to it. I feel compelled to change the station before she can even sing the word boy. Anyone else feel the same way?

That's it.


Book Review!

>> Friday, January 9, 2009

My friend Shana gave me Chelsea Handler's new book, "Are You There Vodka, It's Me Chelsea" for Christmas. I love it! If you love watching her show, Chelsea Lately, then you'll love this book!

Be forewarned, Chelsea's humor isn't for everyone. She's crass and rude and exaggerates a lot.

In other words, right up my alley.

If you haven't seen her show, then please don't read this book. You've got to hear how she speaks and tells stories in order to get her humor. The book tells stories out of her life from childhood to adulthood. Now I'm dying to read her first book. Hooray for happy books!


Congratulations, Round 2!

>> Tuesday, January 6, 2009

I just found out today that my friend Kristi also got engaged to her boyfriend, Mike! She's a Lousiana girl who came to Texas to go to school, then settled in New York for work. We all miss you Kristi.......come and introduce us to Mike! :)

And I stole your photo from Facebook. Ha ha!


I'm sore!

This week, I decided to change up my workout routine. I usually work out 5 days a week, with 2 days each of arm and leg lifting. I usually just do some cardio on my "free" weekday. Now, I'm doing 3 total body workout days, with 2 "free" days of just cardio. I don't work out on the weekends. I pulled the new routine from Oxygen magazine. So, here's what I did yesterday:

Cardio: 30 minutes on an elliptical machine


  • Leg press - loaded 13olbs on the machine
  • Hamstring curls - loaded 50lbs (I can lift more, but it causes undue pain in the next days)
  • Seated calf machine - loaded 90lbs
  • Chest: Incline dumbbell press, using 15lb dumbbells
  • Back: Lat pulldown, loaded 55lbs
  • Shoulders: Dumbbell press, used 12.5 dumbbells
  • Biceps: Barbell curl, using 30lb barbell
  • Triceps: Lying triceps extension, used 12.5lbs, then dropped to 10lb dumbbells
Abs: Roman chair

By the time I got to the triceps, my arms were jelly. I thought I could get away with 12.5lbs, but I was so tired that I moved back down to 10lbs and still couldn't get out full sets of 15 reps. I thought I wouldn't be too sore, but my arms are pretty tired.

The only problem with this workout is that it's long. I try not to let more than 1 minute go in-between sets, so that I can speed the time up. I also need to change up my cardio. I'm always on the elliptical, because I really don't like anything else. I've tried running, but I don't enjoy it.

Not. One. Bit.

But, I guess I could give it another go-round. I just can't seem to go very far before I have to take a break to walk. I think I'll try this a little next week when I've gone through a full new workout week. I don't want to overdo it.

Tomorrow brings another grueling total-body workout. I'll be working the same body parts as above, but using different exercises. The exercises will be different on Monday, Wednesday and Friday so that I can build more muscle and speed up my metabolism. I guess I'm starting to get paranoid about getting older.

Maybe this turning 30 thing is really getting to me after all.


Tomato & Roasted Garlic Soup

Since the cooler weather blew in, I've been wanting to make some soup. I finally got up the courage (and time!) to try out this tomato soup recipe I've been eyeing.

Here's the setup:

First, you have to roast the garlic. I highly recommend doing this part on a day that no one will be coming over. I had to profusely apologize to our AT&T repairman today because the house reeked of garlic. Since this takes 40 minutes in a 400-degree oven, you could also just do it the day before to save time. Mmmmm......garlic.

After the garlic cools, you have to squeeze out the garlic cloves. This was a pretty messy affair for me. My fingers were a mess and I had to pick excess paper out of the garlic paste. Just an FYI. Maybe you'll do better than me.

To start the soup, I sauteed onions & celery in a little olive oil.

After the onions & celery were softened, I poured in stewed tomatoes (I used no salt added; took 5 cans), water and all of the spices.

Once this boiled, I let it simmer for 30 minutes. Now the fun part comes. The recipe says to puree the mixture with a hand blender. I don't have one of those, so I had to pour in the soup, bit by bit, into my blender. You can see what a mess I've already made from all the pouring.

At some point here, I've forgotten to close the pantry door. Cassius got a wild hair and decided to explore. (This is a first, by the way) Obviously, he's feeling MUCH better.

So after pureeing, this is what the yummy soup looks like with a little jalapeno jack cheese:

One mistake I made was using no salt added stewed tomatoes. The soup needed a little salt afterward, so keep that in mind. And now, here's the actual recipe:

Tomato & Roasted Garlic Soup
1 head garlic
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil (I used more....)
Salt & Pepper
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped celery
8 cups stewed tomatoes, including juice
1 bay leaf
2 tsp dried oregano
2 tsp dried basil
1 cup water
1 tsp dried thyme

~Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Remove loose, papery skins from garlic, leaving head intact. Cut half an inch off the top of the garlic. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Bake on center rack for 40 minutes until garlic has softened. Place on plate to cool. Once garlic has cooled, squeeze roasted garlic into a small bowl. The paste will be added to the soup.
~In large saucepan or Dutch oven, heat 1/2 teaspoon olive oil. Add onion and celery and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.
~Stir in tomatoes and juice, 1 cup of water and all seasonings. Bring to a boil.
~Reduce heat, add roasted garlic paste and simmer for 30 minutes.
~Puree with hand blender until mostly smooth.

Nutritional information per serving (makes 12 cups):
71 calories, 2g protein, 3g fat, 11g carbohydrates


Jason's project truck

>> Sunday, January 4, 2009

Those of you who know me in person have probably heard me mention something about Jason working on his project truck. His project truck is a '55 Chevy truck that he is painstakingly putting together. When we started dating almost 3 years ago, all he had was the cab (no bed), the engine on the floor of the garage and a newer model frame that he needed to custom fit to the truck. To someone inexperienced like me, it looked like a pile of rusted stuff. It was very hard to see how things were going to come together. But, Jason saw potential. He is incredibly happy when he's in the shop with his Dad just trying to figure out where to put things. You will never see a bigger grin on his face. Currently, he's working on patching some side panels so that he can send the truck off to get media blasted. The truck has come a long way in the 3 years since we've been together. It's now sitting on the finished frame with the engine temporarily sitting inside. And there's a bed that is now attached. It's starting to look like a truck!

Today we went to a classic car show in Live Oak. As soon as we walk in the doors Jason said, "There's my truck!" I'm wondering where it is as I can't see a thing. (The height difference allows him to see clear across buildings) We walk over and sure enough, there's a '55 Chevy right there in front of us in finished condition. I thought I would post a couple pictures of the truck so that some of you can get a mental image of what the finished product will look like. It sure helped me out a lot!

Sorry some of the photos are blurry; I didn't realize they were blurry until I downloaded them at home. It was hard to squeeze in-between vehicles to get pictures!


Gone Postal!

Last May, I ordered this cute bikini from Victoria's Secret (except it was green and the bottom didn't have strings):

I know I don't look quite like Marissa Miller here, but I'm damn close if I do say so myself. (Ha!)

I also ordered a cute halter top with it. I was planning on wearing these on my honeymoon in St. Lucia in July. I tracked the orders online, but they never arrived at my door. I called Vic's Secrets back and told them I had never received my package. They said they would resend a new set, but I had to get a different color in the tank top as they were out of the blue. I received that one in about two weeks, but never got the original one.

Just after Christmas, my grandma called me and said that I had two packages in the mail. One of them was from Victoria's Secret. The mailman said that they had been sitting in the package mailbox for 2 weeks, but my grandma never got the key to open it. Lo and behold, there was my 7-month old package waiting for me! Now I have two bikinis in the exact same color. And it doesn't even fit that great. At least I have two different colored tops.

But the story's not over yet.

The other package was from our wedding photographer. In it were our engagement pictures that we took in MARCH. She sent them with a letter asking us if she could bring our signature mat with her when she moved to San Antonio in June. Obviously, I never got back with her. Now we have a jillion wallet-sized photos of us. We may have to wallpaper a wall in them.

And the postal service wonders why we use them less and less. And yet their rates go up more and more.



>> Saturday, January 3, 2009

My cousin, Becca, called me this morning to tell me that her boyfriend, TJ, proposed last night! They're planning a November wedding. Congrats to the happy couple!


It's getting a little too serious around here.

>> Thursday, January 1, 2009

For at least the past 6 years, my Mom has always given me a Far Side weekly planner for Christmas. It's a tradition that I love. Not only does my Far Side planner crack me up on a weekly basis, it also lets others know that I'm not too serious about life in general. But this year, Gary Larson did me wrong.

He stopped licensing his cartoons. That means NO MORE FAR SIDE CALENDARS. The world has come to a freaking halt. Seriously.

This is what I used last year:

How much more enjoyable could planning your weeks be? You get a new laugh with each passing week. This year, since my Mom obviously couldn't find the fun, Far Side calendar, so I was forced to look on my own. The only thing that I could find was this:

It's a grown-up, fancy planner. Genuine leather. Gold-leaf pages. World maps. Reference pages.

How much more un-funny could it get? Now my planner gives off a serious vibe that I'm not so sure I'm ready for. Is this what turning 30 is all about?


Happy New Year!

Last night, Jason & I went to a pajama-themed New Year's party. Of course, Jason & I were lame and didn't dress up. Truth be told, we don't really own any PJs that we wouldn't be embarrassed to wear.

There was lots of food to snack on and games to play. Jason & I kicked butt in Sequence twice. The other table of Sequence, however, had the game from hell. It lasted FOREVER. Here they are practicing their strategery:

Of course, there had to be drinking. Cat decided to play bartender and poured a bazillion shots of vodka.

Yours truly didn't participate in the drinking festivities as the meds I have been put on do not mix well with alcohol. Plus, I was DD. This didn't stop Jason. In fact, I encouraged him to have a little fun. He obliged:

The drinking brought out the crazy in us all, but especially Wicca. He was feeling a bit Hugh Hefner-ish:

We took this as our cue to leave. Jason & I were not going to be responsible for any shenanigans that occurred in the hot tub. Okay, really we had a 30 minute drive home and didn't want to be on the road with all the drunk people. We had a lot of fun, though!

Cheers to everyone!


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