Saturday, January 31, 2009
8 Things About Me
1) Post rules on your blog
2) Answer the 6 categories
3) Tag others
8 Favorite T.V. Shows:
1) Friday Night Lights
2) Real Housewives of NYC (and the others, too)
3) What Not to Wear
5) Top Chef
6) Giada at Home
7) The Hills
8) How I Met Your Mother
8 Things I did Yesterday/what a wonderful life I lead
1) Celebrated 3 years of awesomeness with Matt! :D
2) Packed up my desk at work (we're moving; I didn't get fired!)
3) Talked to Mojo while feeding him
4) Made a to-do list for this weekend
5) Went on a brief but enjoyable jaunt to the gym with Rachel
6) Had my first (and only!) two glasses of wine for the week (see #1)
7) Didn't cook a SINGLE THING.
8) Went to bed at 10 and got an excellent night of sleep!
8 Things I look Forward To:
1) Finishing my Masters degree
2) Moving out of Spokane!
3) President's Day (no work!)
4) Traveling to Europe - hopefully 2010!
5) The basketball game tonight
6) Having a clean house
7) Getting a facial in a few weeks
8) Sitting on my bum and doing nothing for the majority of this weekend. :)
8 Favorite Restaurants:
1) Mizuna (Spokane)
2) Wild Sage (Spokane)
2) The Melting Pot
3) Queen Mary (Seattle)
4) Izumi - hole-in-the-wall Japanese food (Seattle)
5) McMenamins (Portland/Seattle)
6) PF Changs
7) Twigs (Spokane)
8) Do coffee shops count as restaurants? I like them...
8 Things on My Wish-list:
1) Wii Fit
2) A laptop (working on this one!)
4) New running shoes
5) A counter-top grill
6) A more cohesive life plan
7) An extended vacation to spend with Matt
8) A raise never hurts, right?
8 People I Tag:
Tag yourselves and I'll post your link here! Just leave me a comment!
Thursday, January 29, 2009
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
I'm joining the upset bloggers of the world in morning Domino magazine's passing. Conde Nast publishing is closing down the last savior of the hip and chic home magazines. I just sent my subscription card in yesterday, and have purchased 4 of the last 6 issues at news stand price (the budgeter in me cringes at that statement), but apparently I'm not enough to keep Domino in business. Of course, economic hardship and decreased sales are to blame - and I can understand that. It's much harder to shill ads for expensive paint and furniture in a magazine like this when many Americans don't know where their next paycheck is coming from.
But thanks for the good times, Domino. Thanks for putting together a magazine that was fun to pick up and thumb through, that gave me lots of ideas for painting and DIY projects, and profiling the interior decoration of stars' houses. Thanks for featuring articles on becoming a wine connoisseur, keeping your house like you have a staff even when you don't, and awesome libraries with captivating pictures. You even had a vegetarian recipe every once in a while. Even though you weren't quite as good as Blueprint, you picked up the slack and carried it well.
I'll miss you.
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Here's some of the loot:
A large purple scarf from my sister, DVDs of 27 Dresses and The Devil Wears Prada, pretty silver earrings, and 2 books (A Devil to Play, and Franklin and Winston).
A sweet set of new wine glasses!
My parents always find the quirkiest stuff for presents - like the book about learning to play the french horn above (I played for 8 years), and they definitely take note when I talk about things that I need (like wine glasses - my set of 8 is down to three, so these were definitely needed!).
I love Christmas.
So every year, my company puts on a Biggest Loser contest that starts in January and ends in March (10 week span), and costs $20 to buy into. You get $10 at the weekly weigh-in if you've lost the biggest percentage, and the rest of the money is split between the top three losers (based on percentage) at the end of the 10 weeks. This year, the top prize is almost $500. So I decided to enter this year along with Rachel and another coworker of ours, and we've been gung-ho ever since!
How am I doing so far? Well, in the first three weeks (including a minor set-back this past week), I've lost 4.77% of my body-weight, which puts me in 4th place among my coworkers. Rachel's in 3rd, and our other coworker is in 2nd, so we're pretty stoked! We have seven weeks to catch the front runner, and we'll go 1-2-3!
So why am I doing Biggest Loser? Honestly, the main reason is the money. $500 will pay for a trip to Vegas for a long weekend! But also, my girls at work are doing it! I didn't want to be left out, and I've had a lot of fun going to spinning, step, and even hip hop (oh man, THAT was a treat tonight) classes with them! But don't get me wrong, the weight-loss and getting-in-shape-focus are important to me, too. Running season is coming up, and I want to put myself in a good position to do well by training hard now.
So anyway, that's been a huge part of what I've spent my time on in the past few weeks, and what I'll continue to do in the coming 7 weeks!
Sunday, January 25, 2009
This is going to have to be a short entry, because I'm pretty far behind on my to do list, so I'll hop right to it. Also, check out Org Junkie's website for more menu planners!
Monday (class night): A big crock-pot of Vegetarian Chili with sour cream and shredded cheese on the side.
Tuesday: I'll be making Polenta Fries since we didn't have them tonight, and baked tofu for me - sausage for Matt.
Wednesday: Mini pizzas with pineapple and bell peppers (mine) and pepperoni (Matt's).
Thursday (class night): Burgers with hummus, tomatoes, and spinach.
Friday: It's our three year anniversary! I can't even believe Matt and I have been together for three years already. :D We'll be eating out somewhere.
Saturday: Shepard's Pie
Sunday: Pulled Chicken Sandwiches for the Super Bowl, and some frozen ravioli with steamed veggies for dinner (if anyone's hungry after all the game-time snacks!)
Friday, January 23, 2009
1. Do all of my homework, for both of my classes.
2. I'm so far behind on filing, it's kind of ridiculous. So catch up on that.
3. Figure out the recycling/garbage/donating situation, cuz it's getting kind of crazy.
4. Do some laundry, because I like wearing clothes outside. :D
5. Return library materials before I get charged late fees.
6. Plan all meals for this week (including breakfast and lunch!) and grocery shop accordingly.
8. Watch the Miss American pageant (what can I say? I live for this stuff.)!
9. Hit the gym both days this weekend, and stop being lazy in general.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Also, I got my first delivery of books from PaperBack Swap today! I didn't have to pay anything for these books (not even shipping), and they came right to my door.
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Monday, January 19, 2009
This weekend (and the week in general) was very frustrating for me, and it's hard to start off the week on a positive note after a frustrating weekend. My job has been pretty stressful as of late because of a super important deadline we have in about 5 weeks, which means we've been required to work 60 hours every week - effectively negating the therapeutic impact that Saturday normally has on my body and psyche. *sigh* It's tough to shove all of your relaxing/cleaning/homework into one day when you've spent 60 hours over the course of 6 days in the office and 7 hours at night after work in class. :(
Basically, this means I need to do a better job of managing my time and to-do lists, so that things don't pile up until Sunday again like they did yesterday. Even though I want to sit on the couch and veg out after work, I need to do that one load of laundry or run the dishwasher. Organization and prioritization really are the keys sometimes. Here's hoping this week will be better!
Sunday, January 18, 2009
I can't believe it's Monday already! Where did the weekend go? I'm so not ready for this week yet. *sigh* I think my theme this week is "orange-roasting", as I have 2 separate orange-roasting recipes! As always, check out Org Junkie for more great recipes and menu-plans.
Monday: No class tonight, woohoo! Our fridge is full of left-overs, so we'll have some more tonight.
Tuesday: I never quite got to the Cauliflower Gratin and Orange-Roasted Asparagus from last week, so we'll do that today.
Wednesday: Sweet and Tangy Collard Greens; baked tofu for me and meat something-or-other for Matt
Thursday (class night): Leftovers!
Friday: Something easy, like soup and grilled cheese sandwiches
Saturday: I'm still on the quest for the perfect macaroni recipe, so we'll be trying this creamy mac-and-cheese recipe, with some steamed veggies on the side.
Sunday: These ridiculously delicious sounding polenta fries as well as this really interesting orange-roasted beet recipe from Fatfree Vegan
Friday, January 16, 2009
In the market for a new apron yourself? Cost-Plus's aprons are absolutely adorable - the prints are just so cute! And how can you go wrong with matching pot-holders and kitchen towels? I covet this one especially:
If you're looking for a more personal touch, I'm absolutely in love with this apron that's currently for sale on Etsy:
Flirty Everday Housewife Apron
Happy apron shopping!
Thursday, January 15, 2009
There are lots of resources available online to help with establishing a workout space. This website has some great resources for cheaply acquiring (or even making) weights - I have a bit of experience with Play It Again Sports and highly recommend them, but unfortunately there isn't one in Eastern Washington. :( As the kinds of equipment to buy if you're not in the market to purchase a large exercise machine (which is exactly my situation), I found this article from WebMD the most comprehensive and useful - it really tells you what you can do with all the different pieces of equipment and why you should get them.
So now you're probably wondering, what the heck did I get?
First up, a balance ball and a set of adjustable (up to 30 lbs) dumbbells.
And secondly, three resistance bands and an 8 lb medicine ball.
Hope you all are having fantastic Thursdays!
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
I frickin' LOVE Real Housewives of Orange County!
And not even that - I've religiously watched ALL of the Real Housewives spin-offs (especially New York; those ladies were fab!) and try to catch the marathons on holiday weekends. I even bonded with a few co-workers today as we discussed what we thought of last week's episode and the possibility of Gretchen hooking up with Tamra's son this week. Seriously, that's how addicted I am.
The funny thing about this show, and the majority of the spin-offs, is that very few of the "housewives" are actually housewives. Some aren't even married, and basically all of them hold full-time jobs. I think that makes them much more relate-able to people like me, though. I'm not married, I don't have kids, and I have a full-time job (that could potentially be a career). Yet, at the same time, I really do consider myself to be all about the family. And even though it is reality television and they do get painted as certain "characters" through editing, it's nice to see women being successful as mothers, wives, and career-women all at the same time. Basically, I use the hour on Tuesday nights to pretend that this is a life-style I can live at some point in the near future without having to sacrifice a family life.
I also spend a lot of time (while I'm watching the show) thinking about which housewives I'm most like. I think the most like these two:
Plus, I can always dream that someday I'll be in the "position" to be a housewife, can't I? :D
Monday, January 12, 2009
Sunday, January 11, 2009
I had never heard of Simple Steps before, but apparently these ladies have been on Oprah, and really, I trust Oprah on these things.
So why did I pick up this book? Honestly, it was the yellow flowers and the pink title. What can I say, I judge books by their covers! However, I bought it for three reasons:
- The steps really are simple. The first week of the plan, which I plan on completing this week, includes the following 4 items: drinking enough water every day, taking a 20 minute walk every day, cleaning out one closet or drawer per week, and saving an extra $2 per day. Sounds easy enough, right?
- The plan is really comprehensive, and will touch every part of your life - your home, your mind, your waistline, and your bank account. That's really what I need.
- No drastic lifestyle changes are required. Everything is eased into one week at a time over 10 weeks, which is totally doable with my busy schedule.
I'll update as I get further into the process these ladies have proposed. It feels nice to finally have a tangible reference book for the kinds of things I'm trying to change about myself and my life, and to know that others have been successful at this exact process. Wish me luck!
I am on a TOTAL squash-and-cheese kick as of late, which you'll notice from the not one but two gratins I have on the menu this week. I guess that's what the first week of Biggest Loser made me miss the most - heavy cream and loads of cheese. :) As always, visit Org Junkie's website for more menu planners!
Monday (class night): Leftovers - chili and/or Thai food
Tuesday: Winter Squash Gratin; baked tofu for me and lamb for Matt
Wednesday: Ethiopian-Inspired Red Lentil Soup (I'm also really excited for the spice mixture included on the recipe)Thursday (class night): Leftovers
Friday: Cauliflower Gratin and Orange-Roasted Asparagus
Saturday: Home-made pizza! I have a "pizza deck" of recipe cards for pizza doughs, sauces, and toppings, so I'll make somethin from that.
Sunday: Leftovers - because who really wants to cook on Sunday night anyway?
Saturday, January 10, 2009
Thursday, January 8, 2009
- The space I choose must still be usable for it's original intention (i.e. the guestroom cannot become workout room, it must still be the guestroom).
- There must be at least 3 kinds of activities included - so I can't just buy some dumbbells and call it good.
- I can't make Matt's life miserable.
- It must be well organized, and cannot be an eyesore to look at.
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
A blog I read frequently, The Simple Dollar, wrote (relatively) recently about a great website that allows users to essentially swap books with each other - much like a library, except you don't have to return the books. And that's great, because I'm always horrible at remembering due dates and getting them back in time. It's called Paperback Swap, and is incredibly user friendly. Basically, you post the books you don't want on the site, someone finds a book of yours that they want, and you ship it to them (at your cost). When they get it, they register the book as received on the site, and you get a credit that you can use to get another book - which you pay nothing for. I'm still a little skeptical about the ordering part, mostly because I just did that yesterday and haven't received the books yet (I know, I know, I get antsy!). But as far as getting rid of unwanted books, I've already shipped off three that I couldn't sell, and it's nice to know that they're going to people who genuinely want them!
Anyway, I highly recommend this service if you've been unsuccessful using other book-selling methods. Plus it's nice and light on the budget. :D
Monday, January 5, 2009
Tuesday: Mixed Vegetable Masala from the Nov/Dec issue of Vegetarian Times
Wednesday: Breakfast for dinner! Omelettes, with a side of bacon for Matt. Oh yeah, and GO ZAGS!
Thursday (class night): Vegetarian Chili in the crock pot
Friday: Grilled tofu (me), grilled lamb (Matt), and Garlicky Sweet Potatoes from the Nov/Dec issue of Vegetarian Times
Saturday: Date night hopefully!
Sunday: Leftovers, and a side of Creamed Spinach from the Nov/Dec issue of Vegetarian Times
Don't believe me? This was taken by my friend and co-worker Rachel on our way to work one day - since the buses weren't running, we had to walk the mile and a half from our neighborhood to our office... and this was one of the many couple-foot-tall berms we had to cross. It's alright, though; I pwnd that berm.
One of my resolutions this year is to do a better job at keeping in touch with people, and I think that this blog is going to be a key factor in that. Hope everyone had a joyous holiday season!