Monday, December 27, 2010

circle time 2010

happy holidays to all! I've posted some circleness stuff at the circleness blog. check it out. love you all!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

posh cracker update

I had to stop by whole foods on my way home last night, so I checked out the cost of the raincoast crisps - $7.99!!! for like 6oz, which probably translates loosely to about 40 crackers. can you believe that? no wonder I had a problem with the price...

maybe I'll have a raincoast crisp project where I try and rate all the recipes I can get my hands on? yummy! and yes, I did eat the rest of the loaf I'd baked up over the weekend for dinner last night. I had them with goat cheese. it was completely satisfying. people, try these things.

Monday, December 20, 2010

raincoast crisps

I nearly titled this entry, "raincoast crips." then I nearly laughed out loud. it's funny!

so, have you eaten these crackers yet?

have you purchased a box? I've eaten them as samples at whole foods, but haven't been able to cough up the ducats for the privilege of taking them home with me. I'm not very stingy when it comes to food, but really, I think I could eat the entire box in one sitting, and although I can't remember how much one costs, I know that I definitely balked at the price. but still, they're SO good. whenever they have them out at whole foods, I want to stand at the tray and just shovel them into my pockets (yes, I do resist that urge).

so, when the kitchen posted a diy recipe, I tried it immediately. I see now that there are others out there. I may have to try others as well!

but, back to the kitchen version (or actually, the Dinner With Julie version): it's great! one word of advice, if you have mini loaf pans, use them. I split the batter into four pans. you get a good sized crisp this way (narrow, rather than wide), plus, it's easy to bake one loaf and freeze three loaves, or bake two and freeze two, and so on. I love them with soft cheeses, especially goat cheese. oh yeah, and I subbed dried sour cherries for raisins, since that's what I had on hand (very delicious version). next time I'm thinking of trying a non-fruited version with sesame seeds. right, and another thing - I think the batter took about 5 minutes to put together. I didn't need a stand mixer either. it's a loose, quick bread batter, so it's easy to stir by hand. all in all, this recipe is a serious win-win.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

MORE martha

I've been past the "I'll inhale anything sweet" phase of my pregnancy for a while, but today I literally inhaled at least 1.5 cups of granola. it was so good, I couldn't stop eating it.

recently, I've been eating yogurt and granola with a spoonful of cherry jam for breakfast, so I made a batch of Marth Stewart's "Farmhand's Choice Granola." the recipe was mentioned on The Kitchen and it looked good, so I gave it a try. I was slightly dubious of the olive oil call (I only had extra-virgin), but for health reasons, I went with it. I didn't make any alterations to the recipe, except to add a bit more coconut (I used unsweetened shredded since I didn't have chips) and substituted about a 1/4 cup of the walnuts with pecans (to use up a teeny bit of pecans I had sitting around). oh yeah, and I threw some extra almond slices in there too. it turned out to be the yummiest granola I've ever had! ok, I'm no granola expert, so take my exclamation with a grain of salt. I love the fact that there aren't any extraneous dried fruits in there. it's not that I don't like dried fruits, I do! it's just that I like the crunch without the chew. besides, since I put jam into my yogurt concoction, I don't need extra fruit. mmmm. I brought what I thought would be a three day supply of granola to work with me today, but I just finished wolfing down day 2 and day 3. oh well.

and one more thing: I've been addicted to the giveaways on Apartment Therapy and The I've been entering them with abandon. will anything bad happen to me because I'm just throwing my personal information around like that? I'm an old person, after all, and I get all weirdly paranoid about identity theft over the internets.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

shabby chic

so, you may not know this, but I'm really a shabby chic girl at heart. ok, so that's not entirely true, in the sense that I certainly don't stick to that aesthetic when it comes to decor, but it is true in that those shabby elements get me every time. John is NOT shabby or chic. he's victorian, but in a weird, male, left-brain kind of way.

this is an image that depicts the relationship between john's right and left brains. I think he uses nearly all of his right brain for intuition because he is fairly intuitive. he's a little creative, but mostly he's into the color blue, and symmetry. these two preoccupations express themselves in decorating thusly: "how about we paint the walls a shade of blue, and hang the pictures in a symmetrical layout?" he uses most of his left brain thinking about language, but not using it properly.

but I digress. what I wanted to do was to say that I saw this photo posted on apartment therapy, and I'm really into it. apartment therapy got the photo from a website called, Cafe Cartolina. I haven't looked through the entire site, but from the glance I took at the current first page, I'll probably go back there regularly.

I totally want that bedframe. john would not want that bedframe. and there you have our entire home decorating process. it's basically an iterative conversation that follows the same, general outline each time. he suggests something, I say I don't like it. I suggest something, he says he doesn't like it. the one thing that does change is the emphasis on the dislike. some things merit a lazy, "I don't think so...," whereas others rightfully deserve an adamant (and loud), "NO!"

we both get sick of the conversation, so john has started to do things like put light fixtures in without saying anything. they just show up. they're invariably ugly, and there they are - in my wall. ugh.

Eastern District = yummy and OPEN for business


I will post again soon, but in the meantime, here's some good news:

Eastern District is open for business. They stock craft beer and cheeses and other stuff too. Go take a look at the website. mmmmmmmmm. For those of us not in GP, they do ship.

Monday, November 15, 2010

"look gromit - cheese!"

oh, and check out this article. it's about cheese. if that isn't enough of a sell, then maybe its title will convince you that it's scan-worthy (and seriously, it's not chockablock full of info, or anything, so it'll only take you a few seconds to read) — Why Cheese Is Like "Dairy Crack": Because It's Got Morphine In It.

which brings me to the topics of fondue and raclette. I recently read two cheese-centric entries in David Leibovitz's blog and he's totally convinced me that I just have to make and eat some fondue and raclette. I've always loved the idea of cheese fondue, and I even enjoy the actual fondue itself, but I've never really considered making it at home. now that I've read David Lebovitz's love-letter to fondue, I'm thinking about buying a fondue set from Ikea. I'm also thinking about buying a giant wedge of some kind of yummy cheese to throw onto a nice fire. I'm totally intrigued by the idea simultaneously heating myself, cooking potatoes wrapped in aluminum foil, and heating a big wedge of some kind of delicious cheese in my fireplace, at home. doesn't that sound so comfy?

hopefully, no great tragedy will befall my household since I'll effectively be dosing myself with an opiate whilst in front of an open fire.

martha martha martha

some may find martha stewart to be stomach-churningly off-putting, but I'm totally seduced. I love perfection-seeking, borderline personalities. so much so, that I've read every variation of sylvia plath's journals that I could find (including her published letters). rather than seeing these women as intimidating, I find them comforting. for example, in the most chaotic times of my life, when I'm feeling overwhelmed by whatever situation/s I've gotten myself into, I pick up a sylvia plath journal and get centered. I think it's simply that reading about how she got all lathered up in insanity via her quest to be perfect reassures me that my astounding lack of perfection must be leading me to a more tempered personality/life/ability to socialize. anyway, this is all to say that I had to beg myself NOT to buy the most recent version of martha stewart's living magazine yesterday. though, since I find myself thinking about her today, I have a feeling that this holiday season will not feel complete without an attempt at at least one martha stewart craft exploration.

anyway, I went looking for the cover of the issue I wanted to buy, so that I could paste it into this entry, but what I found was this:

martha and her french bulldogs
so cute, right? but what happened to these???

does she still have paw paw and her other chows?
I was a bit alarmed, so I did about 5 seconds worth of research and found that she does still have at least paw paw, who was described as "old" and "sage." look at how cute those chows are! I want one!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

life after the city - IT DOES EXIST!

I was one of those annoying teenagers who thought of themselves as edgy, smart, and philosophical. to give you an idea of my psyche back then, my reading list graduated from middle school stuff like, The Outisders and Ordinary People, to Nausea and On the Road in high school. by the time I was a high school sophomore, I'd also abandoned my deep, middle school love of The Police to listen to the likes of The Velvet Underground, Big Black, and Sonic Youth.

needless to say, back in those days I dreamt of fleeing the suburbs to live on my own, in a big city - of course! in the end, I did manage to get away from the suburbs, but I only managed to stay away for 22 years (and if I'm being honest, 9 of those years were spent in Philadelphia, which only partially qualifies as "away").

and now, in the words of George Castanza, "I'm back, baby!" not only did I move back to Philadelphia in the summer of 2005, but I moved back to Fort Washington last spring (March 2010). I thought that I would have some sort of crazy identity crisis once I finally landed in the suburbs again, but lo - nothing of the sort has happened, and actually, I've found that I'm much happier in Fort Washington than I was in Fishtown.

orange + sign and dots depict our lovely (that's not sarcasm!) home in Fishtown, Philadelphia

1. St. Claires ; 2. Sawyers ; 3. Fishers ; 4. us ; orange bracket = Sawyer annex (Maman)

what I do miss from time to time are my friends. I don't see them much now, and as you might suspect, it isn't easy to make new friends in the 'burbs. John actually got sad once when our next door neighbors had a big party and didn't invite us. Lori, who is the cute woman next door, explained the omission away the next time we ran into each other. she told me that Mark, her husband and coincidentally John's primary care physician, didn't feel comfortable with a patient at his keg party. hey, that makes sense to me!

anyway, we've finally been able to breach the inner circle of Madison Ave., and let me tell you that it's kind of awesome. we went over to Lori and Mark's house for drinks and hanging out last Friday evening, and I was seriously excited by the fact that Lori is really great, and that there are other neighbors who are similarly genuinely fun to be around. not that I'm claiming to be the world's authority on hipness or anything, I'm just saying that I sort of believed the hype around there not being even one interesting person in the suburbs (me included).

of course, it could just be that a) I'm old, b) I'm now a parent, and c) I'm extremely boring these days (hey, I have an office job and haven't attended a show of any sort in ages - I'm not delusional), but still, I suppose that ignorance is bliss. anyway, the other cool thing about having been able to penetrate the Madison Ave. clique is that their kids are all friends with each other too, and it's the first time I've ever seen the whole kids-in-and-out-of-each-others'-houses dynamic. it's so cool! the extra bonus is that these are all kids who love toddlers. Henry was feted, provided with laps, hugs, and dotes...I think I've moved to Stars Hollow.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010


I promised Zab a photo of our garden ages ago, but being me, I never took any...this weekend, I made a little bouquet. yesterday I actually took a terrible photo of it. it's blurry and dark, but look, you can see my favorite echinacea varietal - coconut lime! the one in the foreground still has its petals, the "green" balls surrounding have lost their petals, then there's one dark, dried ball in the background. there's also a little rose and some salvia in the bundle. sadly, my garden ran riot this year due to my pregnancy laziness, but since nothing beats the joy of home grown flowers, I plan to do a lot of seeding and planting this coming spring.

and there's Henry, making the most of a trip to Anthropologie. he's really better than I could ever have imagined him being. I'm sure ALL parents say that! kudos to dad for taking this pic.

that is pretty much my life these, home, sleep. I'm looking for chandeliers that don't cost an arm and a leg for our main sitting room. we took the trip to Anthropologie for lighting inspiration, but there was nothing that really sparked our interest. of course, there were plenty of non-chandelier objects (um, the midas tree lamp, the grey plaid wool lampshade, and the awesome leather chair - I think I have to find a stump to hollow out, wire, and spray paint gold!)...oh right, I was writing a blog entry - I just went into shopping online at Anthropologie mode. I swear that their styling - no matter how inappropriate for my lifestyle and income - never fails to get me. as a matter of fact, I intend to get back to my pre-pre- pregnancy weight just so I can shop with abandon at their sales. so there. sorry for the sidetrack into anthrofantasyland. I have to get back to my wishlist now.

Monday, September 20, 2010

rice krispies bars

I've been trying to perfect a rice krispy bar that doesn't use marshmallows, or corn syrup, and includes lots of unsweetened shredded coconut and toasted almond slivers. I'm using honey as a substitute for marshmallows, but it's requiring a bit of experimentation to get the consistency right. my favorite thing about the real rice krispy treats recipe is that it's chewy and buttery tasting. what I don't like about them is that they're made with kraft marshmallows (which contain artificial flavors). my last batch used a vegan caramel recipe as the binder. I'll post a photo of it tomorrow. last night when I tasted them, I was floored by how sweet they were (I'm a bit slow on the uptake because most of the recipe was honey and sugar - duh, what was I expecting?), and I didn't get the ratio of goo to stuff just right, so the bars were too gooey. I salted the bars to help with the sweetness, but then re-read the recipe for the dessert I cribbed the caramel from and saw that it featured sesame seeds, so I ended up cutting the bars, and coating them with toasted sesame seeds. I was convinced that they would still be horribly sweet, but I brought one to work, and just finished DEVOURING it. I still have a lot of tweaking to do, but this has been my favorite iteration so far.

which brings me to my next topic - holiday gift baskets. I swear that I am NOT A SCROOGE, but I do dislike buying stuff for people just to have something to give. I've decided that this year I'll do a homemade treats gift basket for anyone I get stumped on. btw, I'm not Christian, and the holiday I celebrate during the "Christmas Season" is Circleness (I know, I know, I know, but still, it feels wrong to me to celebrate Christmas when I'm not Christian. I do celebrate it with my in-laws, and don't shun Christmas parties, or anything, but just want to do what feels right in my own home, with my nuclear family. Circleness incorporates a lot of the pagan portion of the Christmas traditions - stuff like the tree, eating food, getting together, giving presents & etc. It's just that I don't have to pretend about caring about the birth of baby Jesus - I hope that I'm not offending anyone! I wholly believe in everyone's right to believe in and celebrate anything they deem worthy!).
but I digress.

what I meant to discuss here is my next test recipe, which is the first thing I decided to put into the basket: salted caramels. so there was a whole 'fad' that I missed, but anything that blends salty and sweet appeals to me, so I haven't made these yet, but can't wait. I'm not going to go as far as bacon caramels, but I'm really excited to make them...

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

everything this blog is not

you can't tell from that blurry photo, but it's one of the cutest blog banners I've seen (ever). please click here to go to an awesome website! if you haven't purchased the book, or hate broth and noodles (a-hem, Zab?), TRY AGAIN!

last night, John was working late, so Henry and I shared a bowl of instant ramen. we've been indulging in the kind that comes with fresh noodles, and a saucy (rather than oily, or powdery) soup base. when we use instant (i.e. not a planned meal), we add whatever we have on hand to jazz up the packet. last night I figured out that everything goes more smoothly for Henry if I provide him with noodles and broth in separate bowls. much less mess...I've never seen a kid who likes broth more than Henry. he actually gets excited about drinking broth.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

it's a BOY!

I just got off the phone with John, and he's a little disappointed (and I'm sad that I won't get to see him with a daughter, but c'est la vie).

BUT I'm happy that there were no signs of neural tube defects, trisomy, missing chromosomes, or anything else that portends difficulty for the fetus/baby.

and, my plans of forcing the kids to share a room for as long as possible just became more simple...

Friday, September 3, 2010

oh yeah, and -

and add FLAKEY to the list of pregnancy attributes I'm currently exhibiting. I swear that I'm normally NOT flakey. just now, due to the parasite I'm hosting in my uterus. honestly. flakiness was actually the first thing I'd meant to put on the list, but my brain lapses into fogs so dense that I sometimes have no control over what I'm doing/saying/feeling.

this salad cost $1.56 at my work cafeteria!

there's at least $1 worth of blue cheese on there...which brings me to my newest food obsession: spring mix with blue cheese, other stuff, and Brianna's Home Style Blush Wine Vinaigrette salad dressing. mmmmm. I'm eating it right now, and I'm SO happy with it. the dressing has just the right mix of sweet and acid for a pregnant lady. sorry homemade caesar dressing, even though you are so delicious, you've been pushed out by store-bought vinaigrette.

the funniest part of my current salad thing is that for the past few years, I've been really sort of down on spring mix/baby field greens. even though I'd eat them, I've been more enamored of crunchy greens. mostly I think that I'd gotten sick of frisee. or, maybe it was that I felt like baby field greens (bfg) had become overplayed. they began to feel so 1995 NYC. anyways, I am happy to say that bfg are the perfect leafy substrate for my the blue cheese/blush wine vinaigrette combo.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

stupid pregnant

ugh, let me tell you:

sleepy (a lot of the time)
obsessed with eating watermelon, which I'm also sick of
also obsessed with umeboshi
want to be obsessed with umeshu, but can't be...
brain dead (hence lack of posting!)

Friday, August 20, 2010

oh, I get so sad!

I hate thinking of how far away my Zab is...reading the comment section from the last post nearly made me cry!!!! Why does Montana have to be so far away from Pennsylvania???? WHY??? sigh. I need to figure out when I'm going to find some time to get my butt out there.

but, since I'm currently food obsessed (now that Zab has very sweetly posted that list for me, I can see that I'm actually craving the same exact foods this pregnancy as last!), I'll just expound on my recent food choices, rather than go on and on about how people shouldn't live so far away from one another. PEOPLE - YOU SHOULD ALL LIVE WITHIN TWO HOURS OF ME!

for breakfast and snack (I just wolfed down another one), I had onigiri. I love these things. I can't get enough of rice right now. shortly after I graduated from college, I moved to Seattle. it was during the 1.5 or 2 years I lived there that I came to the realization that I'd get really cranky and out-of-sorts if I didn't eat rice regularly (OK, maybe an ex-boyfriend was the one who brought that to my attention). I swear that doesn't happen anymore, but maybe now when I get cranky, no one notices because I'm cranky much more often. I'm getting old and crotchety!

guess what I'm making for dinner tomorrow? no, not!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


how cute can food get? do you really want to see? click away!

on a not so cute note, here's what I had for lunch. ps. I didn't eat the calculator.

the blob of stuff on the tomato is my current caesar salad dressing. it's nice and creamy, with a yummy flavor of lemon, mustard, and anchovy, but it wasn't the same as the one I'd od'd on the last time I was pregnant. Zab, if you're reading, I'll probably be asking you if you still have the recipe : )

I remember the previous recipe as exactly perfectly garlicky and lemony and fishy and YUMMY! I think I prefer a vinagrette style over a mayonnaise style (there's no mayo in the current recipe, but the recipe IS a mayo, if you know what I mean).

so, what you're seeing in the photo is a product of left-over caesar salad from Saturday night's dinner. ok, not strictly left-over because I added tomato in, but partially left-over. what I've decided is that pizza, caesar salad, and affogato are the PERFECT dinner party menu members. for Friday night's dinner, I made a plain gelato and it was so delicious in the espresso that I didn't miss vanilla, or any other flavoring whatsoever (which surprised me). for Friday and Saturday night's dinners, I tossed the torn innards of a baguette with olive oil (no salt or pepper added - sorry if that's heresy to you) and toasted them in the oven. those were the best croutons ever, and perfect for a simple romaine salad. easy easy easy, and I promise that although it takes a little effort to cook the tomato sauce, ice cream, pesto, salad dressing, and to prepare the pizza dough, that it's all done ahead of time, which means that your time is mostly free for hosting. ok, there's a little bit of an exception, which is that you'll have to cook the pizza's during the meal, but that's not such a big deal!

come over for dinner and you'll see what I mean <3 e.

Monday, August 16, 2010

pizza pizza

remember Little Caesar's Pizza? John often reminds me of how much he loved it when he was in high school. the more pizza for John, the better (many of his friends know that you can't really trust John's opinion of how good particular pizzas are because he will factor price into the equation).

this weekend was a good weekend for John because we had homemade pizza two evenings in a row. I made the aforementioned dough on Friday the 13th, and of course, it was a near-disaster. there is something major about this dough that I don't understand! it was SO soft that it was very difficult to work with, and extremely hard to get off the pizza peel onto the stone. as you know, the pizza stone should be piping hot before you place a pizza onto it, so having a disaster with the transfer does not make for a pleasant experience. first of all, there is the panic, as the dough seems to resist the slide-off; secondly, it's terrifying to try to get your hands/tools into the oven to mediate because burnage is so possible; thirdly everything that has slid off the pizza onto the stone is BURNING...I managed to cook 5 of 6 fairly small pies decently, but there was a lot of smoke in our kitchen, and it was anything but a smooth hosting experience.

working with that pizza dough was so aggravating (it tasted fine, but not so dramatically better, or even better at all than the standard, that it justified all the trouble it took to use it), that I couldn't resist the urge to make a second batch of dough on Saturday. this time, I used a recipe from Baking With Julia and it worked like a charm, and tasted delicious. maybe I'm just a fan of NYC-style over Napoletana-style. whatever, I'm not afraid of that. the dough was easily prepared, didn't need to rest overnight, and best of all, it slid right off the peel and onto the pizza stone - PRESTO! NO trouble at all.

since our dear friend, Jack, passed, we haven't had homemade pizza. I've made it before, and obviously, own a pizza stone and peel, but since Jack was such a master, I just let him fill the pizza part of my life. now that I've started, however, I think I'm going to keep going. pizza dough comes together so easily with the help of a stand mixer that there's no reason to NOT have homemade pizza. there's less of a reason to not have homemade pizza when there's basil in the backyard and delicious tomatoes all around us. this summer has been so hot and nasty that the only redeeming parts have been the fruits and veggies.

so I know I'll never win any photography awards, but here are a couple of pics from this weekend's pizza-fest.

sausage pizza from Friday night

pesto slice (left) & margherita slice (right) from Saturday night

the Saturday pizza was taken on Sunday morning, so those slices are definitely a little worse for the wear, in terms of presentation, but they still tasted delicious!

one more photo...yummy breakfast toast topped with anchovy (can't see it), tomato, and softish boiled egg. doesn't it look like an owl? I didn't eat the basil with the meal, but I coudn't resist adding it into the photo for effect.

I generally like my eggs softer than this, but I zoned out Sunday morning and got to the eggs a minute or so late. oh well, at least it wasn't hard-boiled! actually, I pretty much like eggs all ways, so it wouldn't have been the end of the world if the yolks had been hard - just a bit disappointing.

Friday, August 13, 2010

mmmm, breakfast

I totally didn't even think about photographing my breakfast before I wolfed it down. here's what's left of it: empty containers.

it was so good that I ate a variation of it for breakfast yesterday, and dinner last night. what was it?!

anchovies, tomatoes, and soft-boiled egg on top of flaxseed and quinoa toast made from loaves that I've become absolutely addicted to (whole foods). I came up with this concoction as I was lying in bed yesterday morning. anchovies suddenly popped into my sleepy head, and the rest just followed. the best part was that the tomatoes have been those perfect, summary specimens; exquisitely ripe with the best texture and color ever!

this morning I was running late, so I just had tomatoes atop buttered toast (yup, flaxseed and quinoa bread). the toast didn't even get soggy in my monkey container! I mean, it wasn't of the 'straight from the toaster quality,' but it wasn't a sodden mess, either.

I'm excited about tonight's dinner because I'm making pizza. I haven't had homemade pizza since last Thanksgiving (thank you again and again, Jack!). that's a long time. I'm trying a new (to me) dough recipe, so there's a lot of anticipation building up in my mind/body/soul. toppings will include: fresh mozzerella, basil, homemade red sauce, aged mozzerella (for John), a mixture of sweet and spicy Italian sausage, pesto, ricotta cheese, and of course, ANCHOVIES!

the other thing that's kind of exciting about the pizza experiment is that my new house came with one of those stoves that has a little oven on top of the main, normally sized oven. I've kind of been aching to get rid of the electric beast, but have a hard time justifying the junking of a perfectly functional large appliance. so, I'm trying to get used to cooking without gas and am hoping that the smallness of the oven (plus my pizza stone) makes the perfect pizza cooking environment.

Monday, August 2, 2010

oh that gummi bear!

a bit horrible?

I'm playing with color combos, and by no means have I settled on anything. it's just that my time is limited, and this was the best one I tried today. feel free to weigh in and make suggestions!

pimm's cup sub

I've practically had to sit on my hands to prevent them from clicking over to my favorite new blog, Chez Pim! I want to curl up in bed and read this thing...

new heights

my chinese food craving has just reached an all-time high, now that I've seen this. I really hate to have to own up to the fact, but in all the years (ok, there were only three) I lived in Manhatten, I never - not even once - made it to Flushing (well, there was ONE time, but it certainly wasn't a food-centric trip). my parents were there all the time, and my 'godfather/uncle' always invited me to come, but I just never made it. I wasn't one of those people who wouldn't leave the island for a borough, I just wasn't at all focused on food back then.

I found the New York Times map via a blog, The Wednesday Chef, which I found via an article on food blogs, which I found via a Google search (best food blogs).

I haven't read through all of the blogs listed in the article, but I certainly don't agree on all that I've seen, either; although I must concede the following: (1) I haven't thoroughly read ANY blogs on the list, and (2) could Chez Pim be any cuter? I wish I could be food obsessed and tiny, free to be food obsessed due to making a living from it, and cute and cutely conversational.

Friday, July 30, 2010

I miss Ktiker's Blog!

she's having technical difficulties. but I miss it nonetheless.

let me break it down for you...

I had my first pregnancy visit to my new ob/gyn practice, and I got to ask my burning question about this second pregnancy (well, actually, the first burning question is: is the fetus healthy? that's another reason NOT to get pregnant - the chance of bearing a deformed fetus weighs heavily on the mind and there's no way to get a real read on what's going on in there until you can get an amniocentesis, or other such genetic test (chorionic villus sample) accomplished. they're scary, and it feels like ages before the results come back, hm, can you tell I'm thinking about this right now?).

the questions was, how much weight should I gain?

with the first pregnancy I knew the answer: somewhere between 25 and 35. I went for 25, and that's about what I gained (27). the problem this time is that I'm 30lbs OVER what I weighed at the time I conceived the FIRST time! I figured that the doctor would say, well, watch what you eat and excercise and try not to gain much more weight. no, the answer turned out to be, "you can go ahead and gain another 25 pounds."


I'm trying to wrap my head around that one. I'm so heavy right now that I don't even look like myself to me in photos and sometimes not even in the mirror. what will happen if I gain another 25 pounds? I'm already 7 pounds heavier than I was 12 weeks ago...yipes!

I know one thing: I'm going to have to really get serious about weight loss after this one is out in the world.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

sugar baby

one more thing. I can't stop eating watermelon. it's so good. I am eating about 1 per week. I'm on my second one right now. I cut the melon up into bite-sized pieces and store it in a giant tupperware, in the refrigerator (we just got a new one, our old one didn't stay shut! not so convenient in the summertime). I bring some to work every day, eat some every morning, and every night. it sure is better than shoveling jelly beans, swedish fish, ice pops, and other sweets into my maw. no, actually, I've gotten past the sugar sugar more sugar phase of my pregnancy! I've also gotten past the I'll eat everything in sight phase too. I'm back to normally sized portions and just above my average level of sugar intake.


wow! a photo of my lunch, I can't even remember the last time I managed this kind of post.

so...I'm nearly out of my first trimeseter of pregnancy, and I'm not feeling nauseated all the time. I'm still sleepy most of the time, but that definitely beats feeling like I'm about to vomit (all the time - morning sickness is a misnomer).

I should have known back when I created the burrito post that I was pregnant, but instead I just thought I'd never really appreciated HOW good burritos are. anyway, I've gotten over that craving, and have moved on to craving home cooked Chinese food. oh, and Chinese dim sum foods. well, maybe not all dim sum, but specifically radish cake (lo boa gao).

I think it means that I've been missing my mom & dad more than ever (pregnancy will do that to you). thank goodness I took the time to learn about 1/100 of my mom's repertoire of dishes. I really wish I'd learned more, but I suppose a handful of dishes is better than none at all.

last night I worked up the courage to steam a chicken. steamed chicken probably sounds crazy to most people, but Chinese people love a good steamed chicken. the biggest bonus, aside from how tender and fresh it tastes, is how easy it is to prepare. I'd never done it before, but then I've always had it whenever I saw my mom. plus, for some reason I was scared to use my steamer as anything other than a rice cooker. I watched my mom use hers for all sorts of things, but I never ventured beyond rice.

all I had to do to prepare the chicken was wash it, pat it dry, and salt it. then, I put the chicken into my steamer with some sliced ginger and scallion. an hour & fifteen minutes later, I had a delicious, steamed chicken in my kitchen.

my steamer is white, not red, but otherwise it looks like the one in the photo, above.

the traditional dipping sauce for the chicken is where everything gets all umami. I grated a big chunk of ginger, minced about 3/4 of a good-sized scallion, and mixed them together in a small stoneware bowl with some msg and salt. YES! MSG! (Jeffrey Steingarten has a great article on the much maligned additive, titled something like, "Does Everyone in China Have a Headache All the Time?" it's in his book, The Man Who Ate Everything). my mom was always giving me little bags of MSG from Taiwan but I'd never used any. I grew up with it in her cooking, and never felt sick. like I said, I'd never used it in my own cooking, but I did yesterday, and it was awesome. ok, getting back to the dipping sauce: to finish it, I heated a couple of tablespoons of oil in a small, thick-bottomed pot until it was smoking, then poured it over the spice mixture (hence the stoneware bowl). it sizzled and cooked the ginger/scallion combo and became really yummy. it's like chinese pesto! you can see little flecks of ginger and scallion in the photo at the top of this post.

for lunch today, I also had a little bit of okonomiyaki with okonomiyaki sauce and mayonnaise. it wasn't as umami as my chinese fare because I didn't have Kewpi brand mayo (I used Hellman's), but it was pretty darned good. okonomiyaki is, for the most part, a cabbage pancake. the one I had for lunch was topped with thinly sliced beef, but I like it better with seafood (John hates fishy things, so I don't add anything fishy to them when I make them at home). the other night at dinner, I topped mine with bonito flakes and seaweed, but I was too lazy to arrange all that this morning.

tonight I'm going to cook bitter melon with fermented black beans, ma po tofu (John's favorite), and baby bok choy (with ginger and salt - maybe I'll include a little MSG!). plus, I'm going to eat more of my steamed chicken!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

crazy end of quarter reports day requires extra lavish office treats

when quarter end data arrives, things get a bit crazy for me. there are a billion things to update and send out. most of them go to executives that have to make coherent statements about product and corporate performance to wall street. numbers are unforgiving in all ways: errors are ERRORS and can become fodder for all sorts of fall out. so what's the solution? MAKE SURE THE NUMBERS ARE CORRECT. ugh, if you are any kind of obsessive-complusive, then you can relate to the thorough checkings that tend to happen on days like today.

being pregnant, and in the first trimester sucks for these types of activities. but there were two things that made my day much better.

(1) for Kermit the Blog

I almost never drink the candybar confections available to us at our local kitchenette Flavia machine, but today I couldn't resist. I'd been bringing coffee in from home for a while, so I hadn't noticed that someone had stocked our break room with these chocolate treats. we usually only have coffee and tea. I went looking for my usual English Breakfast, but that was gone - seemingly replaced by Milky Way and Dove. so, whatever, I combined these three packets into my Dunder Mifflin mug. oh, it was good.

(2) this is all I have to say: 250 delicious calories, mmmmmmmmmmmm.

I'm on my way to the gym. I'm really getting into the treadmill/walking thing. I still use my nike+ sportsband pedometer thing, and I really like it. it's fairly accurate for me, and I like to see the mileage build up. I worked out at the end of my day yesterday too. I prefer to do it at lunchtime, but c'est la vie.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

give me some SUGAR!

I'm getting to the point where all I want to eat is cake. that's not a good place to be. so far this morning, I've eaten one bagel with a schmear of cream cheese, and three ounces of raspeberries. the bagel was my concession to eating something totally carbariffic. you can't get much carbier than a bagel...unless you eat a frosted piece of CAKE! I wonder how I'd feel if I had a cupcake for each meal?

I'm looking forward to walking again today. I think it's beginning to be the only time I'm not nauseated. ugh, I can't wait for the first trimester to end. it stinks! add that to the list of reasons to not get pregnant.

Monday, July 12, 2010

try try again

I've finally gotten back to the gym. mornings don't work for me anymore - there is no way I will be dragging my sleepy butt out of bed any earlier than 6am these days. so, lunchtime treadmill it is. I've decided to just walk (yes, that silly fast walk). even though I ran until I was 5 months pregnant last time, I've been so inactive since then that I don't want to shake my body up too much by trying to do too much while it's attempting to make a baby. so, 45 minutes, walking at 4.5 mph, cooling down at a 4.0 & 3.5 mph pace. it's hard to walk fast!

oh, and by the way, I did some serious eating today: small apple, large bagel, tiny bit cream cheese, half an Almond Joy bar (it was SO good!), innards of a steak wrap (mushrooms & steak), & some green salad. all this by lunchtime!

Friday, July 9, 2010

ask and ye shall receive (sometimes)

so, ktiker wants to know, just how much can a person eat in one evening?!

let me set up the situation: breakfast and lunch were very reasonably sized portions of normal food (e.g. two pieces of lightly buttered toast for breakfast, an egg salad sandwich for lunch).

John was not home for dinner, so I decided that Henry and I would eat something that required no cooking. we went to Whole Foods after work and I picked up: a baguette, a piece of Brie, an apple, one almond croissant, and one large chocolate chip cookie.

I cut up a piece of chicken for Henry, gave him a piece of the baguette, a good portion of apple, two stalks of roasted asparagus, and free range over the chocolate chip cookie.

I ate about half+ of the baguette, half a piece of brie, the rest of the apple, some asparagus, a glass of orange juice, and the entire almond croissant. to put that into perspective, it was like eating a 10-inch hoagie filled with cheese! Maybe a 12-inch hoagie! I couldn't stop eating the bread! then to follow that up with a croissant? what am I doing?! OK, so based on what my weight should be, then adding about 25lbs, figuring that for what I should gain in terms of baby weight - I should only let myself gain like 5 more pounds during this pregnancy. someone muzzle me before I hurt myself.

by the way, Henry ate very little of his dinner and only one bite of that cookie! John ate the rest of the cookie for breakfast.

the big flop

that's how I'm thinking of the whole "what I didn't eat" thing, since my worklife got really crazy as soon as I thought I'd worked that addition to the blog out, and I couldn't keep up with anything.

anyway, I'm thinking that a more appropriate log would now be called, "what didn't I eat?" my pregnancy exhaustion and nausea seem to be mostly OK during the day, but in the evenings, they both get fairly bad. the only thing that seems to help is eating...

yeah. you can just imagine.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

to hell and nearly back

aaaaaaaaaiiiiiiiiiiiyyyyyyyyyyyyiiiiiiii! that's a scream, in case you weren't sure how to interpret it.

people, if there are ANY out there still - I have been gone on a long long trip to an ugly place. I'm on my way back, but just BARELY.

first it was work. a certain person who has a great deal of influence in my worklife went INSANE. yes. I say this absolutely. for weeks, my worklife was in the crapper. I was working long hours without breaks, and dealing with razor-sharp emotions that I had no way of relating to, or anticipating. thus, I danced the wondrous balancing act of tip-toeing on eggshells around lunatics. seriously, if the economy weren't so bad (and I wasn't so lazy about shopping the 'ole resume around), I would have bailed. BUT, I made it through the long tunnel of despair, back into the light of my cube. rumor has it this person has gone all nice because of a certain amount of fear in respects to job-security.

I'd been looking forward to vacation for a half-year! many of my high school friends turned (or are turning) 40 this year (not me! next year...), so we decided to all get together at the Clemuel Ricketts Mansion of Lake Ganoga.

the day had finally come, John and I packed everyone up into our little car (Henry, Gummi, Gary) with all of our stuff for a week, dropped the doggies off with Grandma and Grandpa, then headed north for fun!

there was only one little issue - my face was all itchy and pulsating, and just slightly puffy. we suspected poison ivy, but weren't sure what it really was. the day before, I'd been out with the hedge trimmers (men hired to do our hedge trimming); I was explaining to them how everything should look, but I wasn't really touching much of anything, so you know, didn't think about contracting a rash from my gesticulations. but alas, there my face was, pulsating. John and I stopped to buy some benadryl on the way to our vacation destination, and I didn't think any more about it. I got a little weirded out by the fact that my sunglasses left little blisters on my nose, but I was ready to have a great time, and didn't want to get all negative about a couple of little, slightly oozy, blisters on my face.

we were stunned by the beauty of the house and grounds, had a great time greeting our friends, watching the kids interact, etc. I stayed up late, took two benadrly before bed, and figured I'd wake up all normal and ready for more vacation. you know that feeling you get when you regain consciousness and you can tell something just isn't right? that's how I felt when I woke up, and I was bracing myself for something on the way to the mirror, but I wasn't sure what to expect. I got situated in front of the looking glass and rubbed my sleepy eyes to find that my face had sort of inflated on the right and left lower sides. after a brief discussion, John and I decided to leave Henry at the house and go in search of a clinic. we ended up at the Wilkes Barre General Hospital. they gave me a dose of prednisone and sent me on my way.

I still managed to have fun that day - we took Henry to the lake, went to the beach, played ball, croquet, lunch, dinner, etc. and again, I turned in late, took two benadryl before I hit the sack, and hoped for a great morning. hahaha, cruel fates! when I woke up, my right eye had swollen shut and my entire face had puffed up like a big poori. with practically no discussion, John began throwing stuff back into bags and single handedly packed me and Henry off home. I ended up at the Abington Emergency Room (after dropping Henry off with Grandma and Grandpa), where I learned that there isn't much that can be done for poison ivy, and that it gets worse and worse before it gets any better. I got a way higher dose of prednisone, but was told to go home to wait it out. I spent days in a haze of benadryl, and I'm back at work now, but my arms, neck, waist, and legs are covered in a seriously ugly (and itchy) rash. it's been over a week since my initial exposure, and there are few signs that anything is really getting better.

oh poison ivy, I'm not sure how I managed to avoid you through 8 or so years of field work, but I would like to never incur your wrath again! no more hedge anything for me!

btw, is prednisone and high doses of benadryl really safe for developing fetuses? the doctor said, "well, it's not optimal, but..." is that supposed to inspire confidence? of course it didn't.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

more reasons

more reasons NOT to have children (of course I love my son, but I'm just saying!)

you just DON'T know what they'll turn into

you always feel inadequate

Thursday, May 27, 2010


I need a what I didn't eat mascot. any suggestions?

LIVE! what I didn't eat is on the air.

the first post of what I didn't eat is up! ok, it's totally not that exciting, but you know what? I'm excited anyway! what I'd like to do is also include a screen shot of my daily "run," but I haven't downloaded my sportband details yet.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010


I've been really remiss with the photos. okay, well, I've been pretty lame about the blogging thing, in general. but to show you that I'm getting back on track, I've got some random uploads for you. these are random because my iphone doesn't get very good reception in my building, and I couldn't send myself all of the photos I needed to in order to make this post non-random.

(1) Edward sighting

(2) delicious salad at Kate's wedding. in the spirit of ktiker, I took photos of nearly everything I ate at the wedding. the only exception was the fondue. I almost passed that up, but then thought about the fact that Kate would have been disappointed if I didn't take the opportunity to dip something in melted cheese! so I ate a piece of the middle one, which may have been fontina...(not shown!)

(3)mmm, that was some freaking awesome pineapple!

(4) this is what I'm using to log my runs. it's a nike sportsband, and even though I've only used it once, I really like it so far. I logged onto the nike+ site after I created my account, went for my morning run, and downloaded my info, and it congratulated me for my first run. I know this is so stupid, but that felt kind of good. this is what I've come to. I'll take a compliment wherever I can get one.

I know that the What I Didn't Eat site is still missing, but I'm working out how I'm going to depict my lists. I swear, it's coming soon. I'm terrible at delivering on promises I make here, but this is one that is really really really coming.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

shakin' it.

at ktiker's wedding the other day (she was SO incredibly beautiful! and even played air guitar once! amazing.), a couple on the dance floor caught my eye. the woman was a great dancer. I could picture her at a disco, cutely grooving away. her man was not quite up to her level, but was gamely hanging in there, dancing - not just lamely moving his feet - no, this was a man who was trying, and that impressed me. what I noticed about him was that his dancing style was really about his booty. he had it hanging out there, pushed up and back, and he was shaking it. it reminded me of the run I'd done that morning. I was miraculously finishing my (nearly) three mile loop without walking, and coming up one of those low-grade, long hills, I noticed that I was kind of stooped at the waist, with my chest sort of hanging over my feet, and my butt sticking way out. I jerked myself up, as best I could, then noticed a bit further up the hill that my butt was out there again. my hill run is apparently about shaking it too.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

a post for wyatt; patience = key; and BIG ups to Kate and Hoagie

part 1: a post for Wyatt
so, I can't get over how good burritos are. I LOVE them. not the authentic tacqueria type (although they are so good too, especially the ones from SF where they let you take roasted jalapenos as a free side dish - yes, busted, I've never had an authentic burrito, i.e. one from Mexico), but the kind from those sterile, american chains. what they do right, in my humble opinion, is they have giant, thin tortillas, steamers, and both black and pinto beans. qdoba used to be my favorite place, but right now I'm into chipotle. I had a burrito for dinner one night ago, the remainder for lunch yesterday, another last night (john insisted on going to a different chipotle, ha ha), and I plan to eat the remainder either for breakfast, or lunch. I get mine with no rice, a mix of bean types, sometimes chicken, a smattering of cheese, mild and corn salsa, and a small side of guac (which john hogs). did I happen to mention that I love cilantro? couldn't stand the stuff until I was 17 - and believe me, my mother tried to get me to enjoy it throughout my entire childhood-adolescence. whenever I crave a burrito, I think of how my dear friend, zab, would get so disgusted by the fact that her beau, wyatt, would eat burritos for every meal if given the option. zab would eat them, but with a certain look on her face. the first time we ever went to a chinese restaurant together, wyatt opted for the mushu pork. john pointed out that he even went for the burrito at the chinese joint.

part 2: Ktiker and Hoagie are getting married!!!! thanks to Matt Jenkins, I will know where to go, and what time to arrive. thanks, Matt! I was so tempted to get a hotel room at the wedding facility, but considering the fact that we had to ask my in-laws to babysit, I didn't think it would be respectful. hey, did anyone ever mention to you that once you have kids it's difficult to party? unless, of course, you host everything yourself, which we are prone to do, but always having to go to your place is probably really boring for our friends.

part 3: patience = key
I'm so not used to being a failure at something I decide I really want to do. but, you know what? I cannot seem to get started on this weight-loss, get-in-shape thing. that is, I'm good at getting started, getting nowhere and then not sticking to the plan and then going back to square one. I mentioned this to a nice sales person at REI the other day (in many fewer words), and he graciously suggested that I am just busier these days than I used to be. what have I come to that I'm accosting young, fit people to tell them why I'm so dumpy???? so, here's my latest plan: use a pedometer to log my workouts (for the accountability factor), be patient with my runs (I always want to make an improvement with EACH workout, and when that doesn't happen, I get discouraged. plus, since it's hard to get up so early in the morning, shorter runs have to be OK if I want to run at all), and start a new (b)log. you, my readers, will have access to this blog, it will be linked here, and it will be a serious and detailed accounting of my food intake (with estimated calories). BORING, yes (and that's why I decided to link it here. I didn't want to turn this page into a nauseating list of my daily eating habits - I'm fairly sure I don't want to chase away the two readers I've got), BUT here's the high concept part - it will also be a log of what I DIDN'T eat! I noticed yesterday that staying away from foods made me feel really good about myself (hello anorexia?), better in fact, than eating the right foods does (at least momentarily). for example, I did not eat a croissant, or a pastry, or a bagel with cream cheese. am I just making this list up, like I didn't eat a cow, a tree, or a shoe? NO! and that's the rule - I must have encountered the food that I avoided in order for it to count. that is, I must have actually turned it down, not ordered it, or otherwise have passed up a real opportunity.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

lazy days

no pics of pho, but it was yummy!

here's the Phanatic, parachuting into our suite at the game. <3 e

Friday, May 7, 2010

it's easy!

so, I've just passed through a two-week spell of NOT doing anything in the morning, except sleeping. anyway, I think I may have figured out how to avoid sleeping until 6am every day (if I want to run, I have to get out of bed by 5:15am at the latest). go to bed at 9pm! sigh, it's an entire hour after 8pm, but still...

and hey, I just remembered (like RIGHT now it's coming back to me) that even though I slammed my dad for going to bed early yesterday, I used to do the same thing sometimes after particularly brutal cross-country practices. hm.

check out this photo:

my friend, Jaime, made beet-pickeled eggs. she brought one to me, and it came in this plastic cup that sported a shower cap! I'd never had one before, but I love pickled beets, and I love hard-boiled eggs, so um...why haven't I ever had one before? it was so good I totally scarfed it down before I had the sense to set up a photo shoot.

it's going to be a pho-shizzle weekend, so look for photos. plus, I won tickets to watch the Phillies game on Sunday from our work suite. dude, we're playing the atlanta braves and I can't stand them. chop chop.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


Hi!!! to anyone who is still checking on this blog, "you RULE!"

what have I been doing? besides working, I'm not altogether sure. it's been a fugue-state lately, peeps!

hm, I've been running in the mornings, well, except for recently, when I haven't been able to manage waking up in the morning (before 6am, that is). I think I could manage it if I could make 8pm my bedtime. who would I turn into if I began going to bed at 8pm? I shudder to think - I mean, there's little enough going on in my life already. my father used to go to bed that early sometimes and I thought he was out of his mind. now I see where he was coming from. ahhh, sleepy good times.

I had a miniscule salad for lunch today, and while it was yummy, it didn't fill me up. so what happened after lunch? I ate a somewhat stale cupcake (it was good!). I know, I know, not eating the icing is a waste, but I don't really like icing. it's too sweet for me. and followed that up with a delicious miso broth (cold).

I've entered a new cooking arena. I've undertaken my very first pho trial. Pho is a Vietnamese broth. You can make the broth with various animal flavors, and since I'm using beef, I'm making a pho bo. I got the recipe from Steamy Kitchen. I haven't yet started reading the rest of her blog (I found the recipe by doing a Google search), but the pho entry is kind of hilarious. the author dispelled any misconceptions around the pronunciation of the word, pho (pronounced fah), then began using the phrase, "pho-shizzle." I now think not of pho, but of pho-shizzle.

stay tuned to hear about the pho!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

after the gym

they were giving hot dogs out today, in celebration of the opening of baseball season. how could I refuse? the problem is that hotdogs go down so quickly. I held myself to one, but wanted at least two more. I like mine with both ketchup and mustard. I know that foodies, like Anthony Bourdain, huff at people who have the gauchery to include ketchup in their bun, but whatever! ketchup is SO good. I don't understand the mustard ONLY rule at all.

I went to the gym to do a "speed" workout. that means that I ran intervals at a speed greater than 6mph (6.5 and 7 mph - 1.0 incline). I ended up joining an exercise, I'm not sure that it's going to have a real impact on whether or not I do well in my exercise & diet sectors of life, but who knows, maybe it will. one thing I do know is that my BMI is officially in the overweight category (no duh). my blood pressure and everything else seems to be in the healthy category, but really, I need to get rid of some of my pet fat.

hard NO! to the turkey burger

John was dismayed when I first mentioned turkey burgers, and he insisted we eat something else...well, yesterday I didn't give him an alternative, and of course he loved them. I used Addie's recipe, but made one change. rather than feta, I used blue cheese. My favorite part of the burger is where the cheese was cooked all crusty by the pan. Oh, I forgot - I also put a slice of turkey bacon on each burger. the only family member who didn't like the entree was Henry. well, he didn't try it, so maybe he would have liked it. Henry focused on eating ketchup.

I'm going to go to the gym today!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

debauchery is the key to discipline!

ahh, yes, I've finally figured out the recipe for success (ok, stay tuned to see how it does - you know how I go back and forth on things).

I had this epiphany while I was jogging this morning. my hypothesis is that being a little bad goes a long way to staying good. I believe that without my weekend indulgences, I wouldn't get the contrast to my workaday chastity. honestly, how much fun would not drinking, eating sensibly, going to bed at a reasonable hour, and getting up early be if those lazy, hazy, friend-filled days didn't exist?

I made a small change to my workout routine, and I'm really excited about it because it's made such a big difference in how I feel about exercising. I moved my run outside, and into my morning routine. that way, my workout is mostly within my control - NOT at the mercy of my workload, anyway. what I've found is that running in the morning makes me more relaxed during the day because I'm not frustrated by having to stay at my desk to get "surprise-sudden, urgent" issues resolved. I've also discovered how good it feels to run outside. I totally forgot! I mean, the gym is still a great place, and I'm excited that we have it for free at work, but now I think I'll only go two or three times a week to do a strength workout.

I am so addicted to these sandwiches! egg white poof (two scrambled egg whites, microwaved in a bowl like the one in the photo), spinach, two slices of turkey bacon (microwaved for one minute), and Arnold Sandwich Thins. that avocado snuck into the picture...I had half of it for lunch with some peas, corn, sliced chicken breast, and blue cheese.

hey! I forgot to mention it yesterday - great opening day!

Friday, April 2, 2010

last days of disco

it's a yummy sandwich made from egg white poof, spinach, turkey bacon, and arnold sandwich thin. you can see the last days of disco on the tv. once upon a time, I was a shy, geeky kid living in NYC. somehow I hung with the cool kids a liitle bit. chloe sevigny was one of the people I knew in the say hi and that's it way. well, I think we can say that things took their proper course(s). the last days of disco was charming, like it was written and produced by a wes anderson/owen wilson character.

about to drink coffee, run, and get on with my day.

o&o, e

Thursday, April 1, 2010

finally bttw?

I was kinda single white female today (married yellow female?). I've been inspired by ktiker for quite a while, but today it went a bit far: breakfast included an egg white poof, and a green monster, I went running OUTSIDE, and now, I'm blogging.

ok, so ktiker never has two breakfasts...but the green monster was eeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaarly, and the piece of toast with egg white poof, tomato, spinach, and cucumbers was I turning into a hobbit?

btw, awesome guest post on the windy city blog! I will be purchasing the ingredients for the meal today. I just got even creepier, ewww. do I have my own life AT ALL?

I just read Audrey Niffenegger's book, Her Fearful Symmetry. I'm mentioning it because it's partially set in the suburbs of Chicago and mentions Heaven on Seven. I'd already read that post on Kate's blog, and was all, oh! I know about that place when I was reading the book. The book was really fun to read, as was The Time Traveler's Wife, but you know what? I'm not even going to pretend that I understood it AT ALL.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

big red month

and it's not red for the ladies, just red due to unwillingness to exercise. I'm not exactly sure what happened, but between stressing out over everything related to the sale of our house (I still can't believe we were lucky enough to sell it!) and packing, I stopped doing extra physical activity. well, the upshot is that I feel like a giant flobberry, and foolish to boot because I don't have any real excuse. I did go to the gym the other day, and it was not a wonderful, fluid, back to the ole' workout experience. today, I'm planning to go again...and just get through it until it feels good again. the sad thing is that I'm writing about only running like two miles!

john and I went to Ambler for dinner last night. we ate at a restaurant called, from the boot. john's food tasted like it was from someone's boot. I had mussels, which were pretty tasty, but now my hands are all weirdly swollen. is there a connection? the best part of dinner were the complimentary garlic knots. Henry put a bunch of those down.

ah, it feels good to write a blog entry again!

by the way, have I mentioned the fact that windows vista really DOES SUCK?

I don't have a photo of dinner, so here's this one instead, Henry at 10 months. dogs are Gummi and Gary.

must go shower for work.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

I will live to blog again!

Does anyone even bother to check anymore? I've moved, and now I have post-traumatic stress disorder from it. OK, so maybe that's a bit dramatic, but really, everything feels so disorganized and hectic that even though I know I should be happy, I just feel crazy, flat like a pancake! but look, even through it all, I still take photos of my food! they're littering my camera roll on my iphone. who needs memory for photos of their kids, or pets, or family? today's breakfast was the dregs of my sunflower seed butter + granola that I made in my newly moved into kitchen. more to come...exercise? ha! I'm going to the gym for the first time today in weeks. ugh.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

this will not be pretty

the move is beginning this morning. the A-Team can't find a place to put their truck. tune in again tomorrow for gory details and photos. love, e

Friday, March 5, 2010

grody, totally grody

I decided to get all homey and make Henry's birthday cake. it was his birthday yesterday, but we're celebrating one day late.

anyway, I made a chocolate cake with buttercream icing. the icing was intense, I had to buy a candy thermometer to do it properly. I got the recipe from epicurious, and made sure the reviews were good...

all went fine, except that I mistakely bought salted butter. um, ever tasted 5 sticks of salted butter that's been mashed together with some suger and egg whites? it tastes SALTY! oh, and buttery too. this cake is not going to taste good. it's got two layers, and some raspberry jam, so hopefully that will do something. my guess is that we'll each eat one bite, then throw it in the trash!

this morning, we took Henry to our neighborhood diner, and Ann, his friend, had a birthday booth all decorated! I'll post photos soon.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

gym hiatus

I've vowed to stay off the treadmill until I no longer have a respiratory infection. well, I'm not positive that I have an infection per se, but I am still hacking stuff up, wheezing, and blowing my nose all the time.

breakfast this morning was not my usual greenie, but a boring piece of bread. I was starving by lunchtime, which came after I drove out to the mall to get a cakestand, offset spatula, and candy thermometer (which also doubles as an oil thermometer). I'm making a layer cake for Henry's second birthday. I've decided on chocolate cake with raspberry filling, and chocolate buttercream icing. yes, it's completely decadent! what can I say, the kid likes chocolate. plus, it's been an ambition of mine to get good at making layer cakes. this will be my first one.

I got lunch from the cafeteria once I was back at work.

it was my standard soup and salad lunch. this time I added a bit of brianna's poppyseed dressing to the beet portion of the container. there was some lettuce in there, but that was just for show. I barely ate any of it. I feel that I must get over my aversion to lettuce, but it's just so unappealing. the only way I like it these days is as a wrap for stuff. there isn't any salad dressing I like so much that makes me really want to eat lettuce. I think I od'd on salads in 2004.

last night we had my favorite split pea soup for dinner. here's a really bad photo of it. I swear it tastes so much better than it looks. plus, it's super easy to make.

here's how to make a yummy split pea soup:
one large onion, diced
3 or 4 large carrots, sliced into disks (or on the bias, or whatever) ~1/4" thick
3 stems celery, cut same thickness as carrots
16 oz. green split peas (or yellow), rinsed (pick out any weird looking items)
2 cloves garlic, minced (optional)
salt and pepper to taste (only add salt after soup is finished)

- saute all of the vegetables until fairly well sweated
- add to crock pot (or soup pot) with split peas
- stir well
- add water to pot so that level is about 1.5 inches over the contents
if you're cooking it on the stovetop, bring the pot to a boil and skim off the scum that floats to the top (yeah, that sounds pleasant), then lower flame to simmer, stir well, and partially cover - cook until the peas turn to mush. finish by adding water to get the consistency you like.
- if you're using a crock pot, then put the setting to high for 3 hours, or so, then turn to low and let it stay on for a couple more hours. if you're away all day, put the setting on low & the soup should be finished when you get home.
- salt and pepper to taste. I find that the soup cooks better if you avoid salting it before it's cooked.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

holy moly!

I'm eating a KIND fruit+nut bar, and it is DELICIOUS! it's the almond and coconut flavor, and I'm totally impressed. it's not too sweet, has the right chewiness to crunch ratio, and tastes fresh. I love coconut, and the bar scores big there because rather than coconut shreds, it has coconut chips. take a look at the photo, you can see how big the coconut pieces are.


yesterday at the gym

I had a most crappy workout! maybe it was because I had a dinner party on Sunday and didn't sleep well and ate lots of falafel and bagna cauda (garlic, anchovies, extra-virgin olive oil, and butter - yes, it sounds gross, but it's actually delicious! photo of sauce below, we used it for dipping veggies)? I hate myself for not taking photos of everyone hanging out. how silly can a girl be? we had a feast, and lots of good conversation, and yummy wine, and it all made me nearly cry to be leaving my neighborhood. I live in Fishtown, and while it's not the most scenic place on earth, there are some mighty great people around! I'm moving in a week.

but back to working out. I ran like a mile yesterday, then gave up. that's it. that's all she wrote yesterday. I felt like a big bailer, but then gave myself permission to stop, and said, oh well, at least I went to the gym. sigh.

egg whites

mmm, I just ate two scrambled egg whites for breakfast. which reminds me, I keep forgetting to ask someone (or I suppose I could look it up) what egg white puffs are. I notice that Kate enjoys them quite often.

I'd post a photo, but I left my phone in the car. for some reason, I hate going back to the car once I've gotten in. in terms of things I'm lazy about, it ranks up there with being too lazy to go to the bathroom until just before my bladder begins to send out emergency signals.

in a random note, I'm wearing my danny devitos today, but with clogs and not boots. I put them on this morning with the intention of wearing a pair of boots, but got so absent-minded on my way out the door that I just shoved my feet into shoes that were sitting there. imagine these in bright red and you'll have a picture of my feet in your mind. not elegant, but I do love my shoes (they remind me of pee-wee herman).

Monday, March 1, 2010

french fry guys

so, the most disquieting thing about my kombucha experience is that I was looking closely at the bottle as I opened it (slowly, a-hem), and I unfortunately noticed that there were disturbing things happening during the opening process.

do you see those two mop-like clusters of something hanging out above the label? this stuff was floating about, coming up to the top, and cavorting about inside my drink like the McDonald's french fry guys (front row, picture below).

not to sound too picky, but I didn't want the sensation of one of those devilish creatures touching my lips as I quaffed my beverage.

anyway, the taste wasn't nearly as bad as I was expecting. not that I knew what I was expecting. to tell the truth, it tasted like a Lambic Framboise Ale. I was thinking, am I going to get drunk if I drink this entire thing? I didn't get through the whole drink, but I am going to try it again soon. John kept exclaiming everytime I opened the bottle (we were in the car, running errands), 'woa, that stuff really stinks!'

there are apparently many health benefits to drinking kombucha (I didn't feel anything, but I only had like three ounces of my bottle), but I think that the part I like best is that it's scientifically classified as a 'zoogleal mat.'

I found out last night that I have more than one friend who is currently fermenting up their own kombucha. apparently, you use a 'mother' to start a new brew. each time you bring a mother through the fermentation process, she makes a 'daughter.' by this convenient process, you can always be in the kombucha, baby!