Monday, May 30, 2011

Happy Memorial Day

I don't really do anything particularly special for Memorial Day weekend, but this one was much better than last year. If you'll recall from a few posts ago, I spent part of last Memorial Day weekend helping The Writer at a tag sale while she stole stuff from my and generally caused a ruckus through out the day. As this weekend is the unofficial start of summer, however, I started to feel like maybe I was missing out on something.

Do you do something exciting or super special for Memorial Day?  Maybe next year I'll have a big shin dig, or an Indie 500 party. Isn't that always on Memorial Day Sunday?

There were some highlights from this weekend, though, including visiting a friend and her super sweet 4 month old girl, Adi Joy.

Throw in some shopping, froyo and heading to the beach today for a cookout (mmmm, cookout food!) and it wasn't half bad.

In fact,  I think this was definitely the perfect place to end out this Memorial Day weekend!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

You Know the Drill. . .

. . .It's 'Things I Love Thursday'! And it's The Sunshine Edition (cue dramatic commercial voice), since the sun finally decided to come out this week!

1. Walking in the beautiful sunshine to the Boston Common with coworkers to enjoy a picnic lunch.  . .and running into another friend randomly while there!

2. Mango smoothies from Panera on their patio on a warm, sunny day

3. Listening to the song "Shining On" by  Big D & the Kids Table. It's an old one, but this group is from Boston and this song means so much more to me now that I live here and know all the things that they are talking about. Blanchards on Comm Ave? Been there!

4. Not having to wear a jacket of any sort for 2 day and nights in a row. How do we ever survive all of those months of walking around with heavy body length down jackets?

5. Last night some friends and I went to see the movie The Bridesmaids. I don't think I've ever laughed so hard in a movie theater in my life. That movie was at once uncomfortable, disgusting, hilarious, and so genuine it was insane. You know that expression "whooping with laughter?" I now know that that means.

Ok. that last one isn't really about sunshine. Except if you consider that laughter is the sunshine of life. Or maybe I just made that expression up. . .

Monday, May 23, 2011

steak and stir fry

This weekend was a glorious one for sure, filled with great food and amazing friends. And even a little bit of sunshine on Saturday, a rarity of late here in Massachusetts!

I got to spend part of it helping some wonderful friends move out of their little house which I've grown to love over the last year they've lived there. They graciously let me crash there for a few months last summer while I was in between homes and I immediately fell in love with their huge front porch, adorable kitchen, and how much FUN they had in that place. It was sad to say goodbye, but at least it was only to the house, not to them! We kicked off our celebratory weekend with my first grilling session of the season. Mostly I just held the umbrella for my grill mate when it started pouring mid grill, but still. . . We were rewarded with some delicious steak and veggies! topped off with some daiquiris and Trader Joe's berry crumble pie with french vanilla ice cream. Talk about delicious!

Not to be outdone, some girlfriends in Boston traipsed over to my place Sunday upon my arrival back in Btown for some stir fry and girl talk (my fav!). We threw together this amazing mango chicken stir fry that was such a treat. Check out the recipe here if you are in the mood for a summer fresh stir fry (note:: because we all love it so much, we added about double the amount of ginger, and it was to DIE for). The recipes a great start, but we definitely added the herbs and spices to our taste. And using different kinds of mango really ratcheted up the complexity of the dish. It's definitely a keeper!

One of my favorite things is getting in the kitchen and experimenting with recipes with lots of wine and goods friends to chat with. Do weekends get any better than this? Next up we're thinking of having some fun with fish. yumm!

so many beautiful friends in one weekend. I'm so blessed!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

More Things I Love Thursday

1. Getting caught 20 minutes from home in the rain while out for an evening walk. Nothing to do but savor the rejuvenating feel of the raindrops on my skin!

2. Reading a good book before bed that I don't want to put down, but finally have to because my eyes are dropping closed and I can barely see the pages. . . then waking up in the morning excited to start reading again.

3. Finding the cutest shirt while out at lunch break and then seeing "30% off already marked down price" above it. Score!

4. This Gal, who makes some of my favorite hand made products out there! She's been having giveaways every day this week to celebrate her one year anniversary of quitting her day job. I haven't won one yet, but I've been entering enthusiastically everyday (which is half the fun!)

5. Receiving a text  at approximately 8:47 AM, this morning from a good friend Rachelwho has been in Bolivia for the last nineish months. She made it safely back to our fair country! Now if THAT doesn't set the tone for a great Thursday, I don't know what does! 

 Miss R and I reenacting the Tanya Harding/Nancy Kerrigan scandal of our childhood. . .

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Reading List

This maybe the most obvious statement I've ever written on my blog (I doubt it) but I love to read. I love the imagination it takes to write a story, the cleverness of combining words together to make something beautiful and lasting. It's brilliant, really. Sometimes, when I'm reading a book someone will pair some words together in such a beautiful way that I just want to cry(and sometimes do).

As such, every once in awhile I find myself in this sort of dilemma.  I start reading so many books at the same time, that it becomes a little overwhelming.

This is what has happened to me most recently as I'm involved in reading 5 different books at once. It crept up on me over the course of a few weeks. I started finishing a book I've been sitting on for awhile, started reading a new book with someone, downloaded some free fiction on my Kindle, and then started reading a book at the behest of a friend. 

 It's gotten to the point now, where I've actually made a schedule about what books I read when. It's a little ridiculous really. One for before bed, one for the first half of my commute in the morning, one for the second half and also the ride home. one for reading at breakfast, and one for reading on the weekend.

Everything was completely thrown off, however, when I didn't get to read before bed last night. So I decided to read that book at breakfast, but I was running late so barely read any. Then I got on the train and without thinking read my second half book the whole way. I'm out of control!! What's next, reading my weekend book on a Wednesday? The audacity!

you maybe be wondering why I don't just set some of the books aside, get through one or 2 and then move on to the next.

The answer: I simply can't. I like all the books I'm reading. They are full of wise words, thoughtful ideas on life and they are growing me (they are all nonfiction but one) I want to know what they all have to say and I want to know now.

Maybe it's just the stubborn competitiveness in me that's causing such craziness, I don't know. I'm starting to feel this low grade stress that's prompting me to finish these books. Maybe that sounds terrible to you? For me, it's the way I operate best. I'm hoping to knock 2 of them off the stack this by this weekend, and then I think I'll be at optimal book reading potential. Three books, one for morning, noon, and night, or something along those lines.

Since I've gone totally rogue today and am out of whack, I wonder what I'll read before bed tonight. . . it's anyone's guess!

Monday, May 16, 2011

apologies and a trip down memory lane

I've been woefully absent on my blog of late. I really should apologize, and frankly, I miss it quite a bit.

But then, it seems I sit down to write and. . .there is nothing.

A writer's block, if you will.

I know I will.

Maybe I just need some new inspiration. A changing of routine, or something. (or maybe I just need to drive behind the T more often)

Whatever it may be, stay with me folks, I'll write again soon and it will be brilliant (one can hope).

To tide us all over: Remember when I worked for the crazy Writer and she kept us all on our toes with her insane ways?

Like that one time she stole some of my stuff at a tag sale. . .If you've forgotten, you can read about it here.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

T Pass

 If you're not sure what this is: it's me driving behind a van. and we are both driving begind the T. As in, we are in the same lane as the T.

There are a lot of things about the city of Boston that are great, and there are also a lot of things that make absolutely NO SENSE. This little feat of public transportation is one of them.

I'm wondering who in their right mind decided that it was a totally brilliant idea to have people winging around in their cars driving right alongside, passing in front of, and tailgating behind the T. It's basically like driving around with 4 buses stuck together and careening around the road. Except they're on a track which you have to be careful of as you maneuver in and out of the lane with the tracks cut through. I could be wrong, but I imagine that can't be great for your tires.

There are only a few spots in Boston where you and the T get nice and cozy on the street together. Thankfully, this picture is documenting the first (and hopefully the last) time that I've had to navigate these shenanigans. Really, Boston?

I guess, I should offer a concession and note that I don't like driving in the city to begin with so I might already be a little biased. Everyone in the car with me at the time, however, completely agreed with my viewpoint, so it's not just me!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Goodnight, Moon

Do you ever have those nights where you're laying on the couch all comfy, reading and watching TV? At some point, your eyes begin to droop and you start to have a half dream about your comfortable bed. You try to pry your eyes open and think about how lovely it would be to get into said bed, but suddenly the bathroom seems 10 miles away. 

You know by the time you brush your teeth, wash your face, and take out your contacts, you will be out of that comfy half slumber and feeling a little more awake, and the feeling of crawling into bed will be jut a little less satisfying. So you lay on the couch for another 5, 10, 20 minutes wishing it didn't take so much energy to get ready for bed, wishing that your bed was in the living room and that leaving your teeth unbrushed and face unwashed wouldn't be gross.

My senior year of college I came up with an ingenious solution to this problem. Late into the night I would just be on the couch with my laptop playing spider solitaire and listening to music (the picture of a glamorous life, clearly). Sometimes I would want desperately to go to bed, but it would require so much work that I would just continue playing away until the wee hours of the morning. 

It was getting out of hand, so I came up with a plan. After getting home from whatever was going on that night, even if it was only 7 or 8 at night, I would get in my PJ's and basically get ready for bed and then just hang out. That way, whenever I was tired, I could just go fall into bed.
Now, there were some flaws with the plan. For example, sometimes I'd be ready for bed at 7:30 and someone would stop by the apartment for a visit and I'd look like total crap. Actually, that was really the biggest flaw now that I think about it. Also, my roommates took great pleasure in laughing at me and my antics (nothing new there though). Or sometimes I'd be busy doing whatever and would just forget about the plan until I was back in the late night conundrum again. Mostly though, it was a fantastic idea!

Why am I sharing this, you wonder? Hmm, no particular reason except that thinking this again made me laugh, and I thought it might give you a chuckle too. Alternatively, perhaps this little piece of bedtime wisdom won't completely revolutionize your life? For all I know, you've completely stopped reading this and are busy brushing your teeth and slipping into your Spongebob jammies so that in 3 hours time, when you're longing for you bed, it's only a few shorts steps away.  
you're welcome. 

Thursday, May 5, 2011

touche toupee

Today as I was leaving work I saw a man, probably in his 60s, crossing the street nearby me. He looked a little funny from afar but I couldn't really figure out why.

As he got closer, I realized why:

He was mostly bald on the top of his head, but had a good amount of gray/white hair on the sides. Topping his bald spot, however, was a rich chocolate. brunette. toupee.

I did a quadruple take, and then smiled all the way to the train station.

Bold move, my friend. bold move.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Birthday Recap

This weekend was my birthday (on Saturday) and boy did I have some fabulous weather and some great friends to celebrate with! As is my usual MO, I brought my camera with me everywhere thinking I'd snap dozens of fun candid, blah blah blah. I took 2 pictures the entire time. . .and the second one was just a retake of the first one. Eek!

I did take a few phone shots though!

My birthday weekend started off with a bang on Friday, when, round about 10:45 AM the secretary in my office rounded the corner of my cubicle with an Edible Arrangement. Receiving one of these amazing fruit bouquets has been a dream of mine for a long time. You may recall from an earlier post, that someone received one of these bad boys on, like, my second day on the job and it was the sweetest thing ever! Thanks to my wonderful, thoughtful friends who pulled this off! It was the highlight of my weekend and so fun to eat (delicious, too!)

Saturday followed with a visit to my old home, dinner at my fav restaurant, cake, and even (dare I say it??) shots. Followed by an amazing Sunday of lazing in the sun with friends and receiving some surprise birthday gifts in the mail upon arriving back in Boston.

I'm so blessed with such an amazing family and so many great friends!

 yup, that's a 24 out of pineapple in the middle there!

 . . .and making a coworker taking a cheesy photo of me with it before we all dug in

Cake in a bar! (homemade German Chocolate cake, that is!)