Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Signs, signs, Everywhere Signs

After work on Friday I went grocery shopping as I do every week. I had our meals for the coming week all planned out, the list in hand, and cash in my wallet. The cart got a little more full than usual as I needed to restock some of my baking supplies (flour, brown sugar, etc.). The workday had been long and I was exhausted, cranky, and hungry. I had trouble finding the enchilada sauce so this trip was not going as quickly as I wanted it to.

When I came to the registers I was happy to see that all of the lines were shorter than normal. I chose a lane with only two people in it: a woman who was just about to start the paying process and a man with only one item. Score!

I began unloading my cart onto the belt. Eggs, bread, lots of veggies, some cans, etc, etc, etc...lots of stuff! I had to pause and wait until the belt moved forward to make more room. At this time the kid working the register, who honestly looked not a day over 12 and a half, looked at my stuff, looked at me, then looked at the light with the aisle number.

"Hey Zack! Zack!" He yelled to a co-worker across the store. "You turned off my sign!" And with a flick of his hand a new light appeared above his register.

12 Items or Less.

He returned to helping the woman who was paying. I looked at the sign, looked at him, then looked at all of my items. Not even close to twelve. Closer to 40 or more.

"Um...excuse me? Excuse me!"

The kid looked up.

"Um...that sign wasn't on when I got in line."

He waved his hand. "Don't worry about it, I'll still take care of you."

I smile and laugh nervously, "Yeah...but now I look like a jerk."

He finishes helping the lady then the man in front of me. I frantically look behind and all around me to make sure no one is staring at me. Because now I'm one of THOSE people. You know the ones...they take 20 items into the express lane because, well, it's close enough right? I can't STAND those people! And now...I look like one of them. A really bad one.

When it's finally my turn the kid starts slowly running my items across the scanner. There is no bagger so I hurriedly, with no method whatsoever, begin tossing everything in bags, still frantically looking behind me at those who are surely judging me.

Great, now there's a young Latino guy in line behind me with 2 items and a woman behind him with 1. GREAT! I'm sweating now trying to throw items in bags, throw bags in my cart, and hand over coupons, cash, and my store card all at once.

Why is this kid going so slow??? Can't he see there are very nice people following the 12 item or less rule behind me? Can't he see that they must hate me? CAN'T HE SEE?

Finally, red faced and sweaty I turn to the guy behind me.

"ThesignwasntonwhenIgothereImreallynotanasshole"

"What?"

I laugh nervously and point to the sign.

"The sign. It wasn't on when I got in line. I'm really not an asshole."

He laughs. "The thought never crossed my mind."

I take my change and receipt and run away with my loot. Damn kid with the 12 Items or Less Light, what the hell?

Then I laugh. It was pretty funny.

And because we're broke as hell, Geoff and I are getting second jobs to get us through the winter. I work in a self-funded department at a college that doesn't pay enough and he works for the YMCA. We're hoping to find meaningless, flexible jobs that we can just quit without feeling guilty about when we've gotten what we need. Now I'm thinking working at a grocery store would be fun so I can pull this on other people...mwahahaha.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Stolen Pictures

I finally stole some pictures from the wedding I attended a couple of weekends ago and am sharing...shhhh.


Bride, Groom, and our friend who married them



Geoff and I


And as always when you combine alcohol, music, and the boys...there was a dance off.

Good times!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Someday I will be queen.

I had a pretty good weekend. There were a lot of things going on in Providence on Saturday and the weather was nice so Geoff and I headed downtown. First we hit up the 1st Annual Sustainable Living Festival. It was ok, and I'm sure it will get better as the years go on. There were dozens of tables set up in the park all from different non-profits and companies offering information, etc on sustainability. It was a little ironic though as everyone handed out tons of paper pamphlets and fliers...oh well. There was good live music and cool people. Also there were three people dressed in these crazy alien type costumes. They told me when they come back to take over visit Earth that I would be their queen. Sweet.

There was also a street painting festival a few blocks over so we wandered that way.
These people are amazing. There were painters who ranged from age 10 to age 30something and they were all incredible.
Of course, since I can hardly draw a stick figure it doesn't take much to impress me, but still. Really awesome.





We spent about 4 hours downtown wandering back and forth between the two festivals...it was a good time. When we got home I made no bake cookies AGAIN. Oh my god it's so bad you guys...once I start making them it's so hard to stop.

Sunday I never changed out of my sweatpants. I sat on the couch and switched off between reading A Thousand Splendid Suns and watching football all. day. long. I got a little antsy by the end of the day, but overall it was nice. It was one of those cool, rainy fall days perfect for hiding indoors and watching football. The Patriots looked better this week so that was nice. I made our first Shepard's Pie of the season along with some corn muffins and we were quite content. It was pretty depressing once evening came and I knew the weekend was already over. It never lasts long enough.

You may have noticed that I haven't mentioned running in awhile. That's because I haven't run in over a week. Very bad. I really need to force myself to get back into that whole thing and stick to it. I'm already feeling a bit of the "winter blues" set in and it's only September. Last winter was so hard. It was our first winter in RI and I missed my friends back home so much. We felt trapped inside and couldn't go out much as we were broke as all hell. I hope this year is different. I need to make this year different. You guys will help right? Right? Just an encouraging word every now and then...k?

How was your weekend? Do share the details! Also I will post a recipe tonight. I am trying an enchilada casserole. If it comes out good I will share it...otherwise I'll post something else.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Sunny Surprises

Yesterday I walked into the apartment after work, and a few minutes into my "home from work" routine I noticed this:


I love yellow flowers. They are sunny, happy, and brighten up any room. Geoff knows this, and before he left for his 2nd shift of work for the day he went looking for some.
He biked around and found the perfect flowers for a beautiful surprise bouquet. Here is a pic from this morning...the buds are blooming!

Love.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

How I came to embarrass myself in front of 500 people or the time I kind of got hit on by Bill Clinton

I met Bill Clinton in October of 2006.

Back in college I was a member of the USM College Democrats. In the fall of 2006, Maine's governor was campaigning for reelection and Bill Clinton came to speak at our college as a fundraiser. There were only 500 tickets and they were very expensive. Although I had loved Bill for a long time, there was pretty much no chance that I would get to see him.

About two days before the big event, our club president informed us that we were going to get to stand on stage behind Bill while he spoke. OH MY GOD ON STAGE MERE FEET AWAY FROM BILL CLINTON!!!! I was elated.

The day of the rally, we had to be on campus and ready to go at about 9am, even though the speech wasn't happening until early afternoon. Security was VERY tight so our group of 20+ was pushed into a small, windowless room with no food, windows, or drinks and not enough seats for everyone to sit while we waiting for the event to start. We were in there for HOURS. We were hot, hungry, thirsty, and tired. But we were going to be on stage. BEHIND BIG B.C.! I could hardly contain myself.

Thankfully, about an hour and a half before we were to be officially released to the stage, they allowed us to go to the small snack bar in the building next door. I got water and some crackers and returned to the tiny holding cell room to wait.

FINALLY an aide came to retrieve us and told us to quietly, in a single file line, head out onto the stage and arrange ourselves on the three rows of risers. There we got to stand for about an hour as different local politicians gave their speeches (including the governor). We stood there under hot lights in a crowded auditorium knowing that soon enough we would be staring at the back of Bill Clinton's head.

After what seemed like an eternity of yawn inducing political drivel inspiring campaign speeches, the moment finally came. Bill Clinton stepped before us and took over the mic. Such an exciting moment in our lives!

Of course, it would have been easier to feel excited if I wasn't sweating from the lights, hungry, thirsty, and tired from standing for hours. As I tried to focus on Billy C's words I began to feel extremely nauseaus. "Oh dear god," I thought to myself. "Please don't let me throw up right now. Please." The wooziness continued, and as I stared at the back of Bill's head, I was slightly alarmed to find that it felt like I was looking through a dark tunnel that kept getting wider and smaller, wider and smaller.

Now let me just say, that until that moment I have never fainted in my life, and I never have since. But of course the one fainting experience in my life would happen while I'm on stage in front of 500 people and camera crews and behind the glorious myth that is Bill Clinton.

That's right, I fainted. Luckily not many people in the audience even noticed, and there was not mention of it on television. I was standing in the middle of the three rows and it happened very quickly. I fell back on the guy behind me and sank, he and another person caught me just before I hit the floor. I opened my eyes shocked to see my fellow College Dems looking down around me and stood up. A woman came over and waved me off stage. I went to her.

"Oh my gosh are you ok???"

"Yeah..um, I'm fine I think."

"Here's some water, has this happened before?"

"Thanks. No, never."

"Come over here and sit down."

Bill was almost done with his speech. I knew when he was through he'd turn and shake all of our hands. I didn't want to miss that.

"No I'm fine."

"I really think that..."

"I'm fine! I'm ok! I need to get back out there!"

I skulked back onto the stage and stood on the side of the risers just as Bill was getting a standing ovation. He turned and shook all of our hands...it was amazing.

After that he was quickly ushered away by security and we were all ready to leave the stage. Just then an aide with an earpiece came running out.

"Where's the girl that fainted?!?"

We were all silent for a moment.

"Bill wants to see the girl that fainted!"

I was in shock and still pretty woozy and confused from the whole passing out incident. Some friends pointed to me and the aide grabbed my arm and led me into a small area that Bill and the governor were in.

Bill looked at me and chuckled. "Are you ok?"

I nodded.

"Haha, I didn't know I could still make young girls faint!"

I shit you not that's exactly what he said.

I laughed stupidly, completely in shock. He gave me a hug then yelled out "Someone get me a camera!"

The aide that had retrieved me ran off and returned a moment later with a camera. I stood in between Bill and the governor and had my picture taken. Then they just walked away...with the camera.

So somewhere out there in the great wide world is a picture of me looking all flushed and sweaty with Bill Clinton and governor Baldacci by my sides. If I didn't have so many witnesses, I'd swear this never happened.

But it did.

Dancing the night away! (but I forgot the socks)

My apologies, loyal readers, for being MIA so much this week. I'm still tired and trying to catch up at work from this past weekend.

Speaking of this past weekend...it was great! We drove up to Maine on Thursday night and stayed with Geoff's mom. When we arrived I made some no bake cookies and they came out DELICOUS. We all agreed they were a perfect snack for 11pm. The next day we didn't do much at all, just relaxed at the condo. Geoff and I went out to Gritty's, a local Portland bar that brews it's own yummy beer, for a couple of drinks that night.

Saturday morning Geoff's dad came to Portland to pick up Bandit. He was our designated dog-sitter for the wedding portion of the weekend. I was a little sad and worried...it's silly, but we've only spent a handful of nights away from the little guy in his 3 years with us. As I was getting ready for the hotel I kept thinking I'd see him out of the corner of my eye, but it was just a pillow or a heating pad...sigh. He had a blast though, running around with Tia (Geoff's dad's dog) off leash as they were in the middle of no where. He slept the whole way back to RI on Sunday because he was so worn out! It was fabulous.

Back to Saturday. We departed for Sunday River, a ski resort area about 2 hours north of Portland, around noon. The wedding was at a hotel that we were all staying at up there. The wedding was at 4pm so after arriving and checking in we started getting ready. By getting ready I mean sat around watching cable (we don't have that at home!), eating crackers, and drinking beer. But around 3:30 we started getting ready. That's about the time that Geoff scolded me for forgetting his black socks. I brought them to Portland but forgot them at his mom's condo. I'm sorry...shouldn't a 29 year old man be able to remember his own socks? Didn't he wear socks before we got together? No? Ok...I'll try harder next time.

The wedding was VERY fast which I loved. The weather was beautiful. Low 60s but sunny...great fall weather! The reception was SO. MUCH. FUN. We drank a lot but didn't have to pay for a thing all night. The bride and groom had paid for a keg and 12 bottles of wine at the bar, and there were 2 more kegs back in one of our friend's hotel rooms. Sweet! It was amazing seeing everyone...I MISS OUR FRIENDS! We danced (and sang) the night away with them all and I can't even explain how wonderful it felt to be with our lovely people again, if only for one night. Alas, I left my camera in my purse most of the night, so you'll have to wait until I can steal some pics from some of my more camera happy friends before I can share them with you.

There was a bit of an after party in the "keg suite" after the reception...but it wasn't much of one. Everyone was too drunk by then and there was this girl there (a semi-new girlfriend of one of the guys) that no one can really stand. She is an attention whore (literally) and spent that part of the evening asking the guys if they wanted to see her boobs, flashing one of our married guy friends, sitting on another guys lap while his girlfriend was across the table, and massaging Geoff's head. We just ignored her crazy antics, and Geoff and I eventually went to bed at about 3something in the morning.

Needless to say, the drive on Sunday was miserable. I was hungover and carsick...blah. I took a nap at Geoff's mom's and awoke just in time to watch the second half of the Patriots game. WTH Pats?!?!? I hardly recognize you anymore. :-(

The drive back to RI was better and we were happy to be home, though we already missed our friends. I can't wait to see them again, but until then the memories of this weekend will keep me happy.

Monday, September 21, 2009

And the winner is...

Me!

While on my lunch break today I was catching up on some blog reading and found that the lovely and always hilarious Kathryn over at From the Inside...Out has given me two awards! These are my first blog awards and I am so thankful and happy. I wasn't expecting this so early in my "blogging career". Definitely go check out Kathryn's site, she's always great for a laugh and is an amazing writier.



The first is the Superior Scribbler Award, and while I don't think my scribbling is superior I really appreciate the recognition and want to pass on some of the love! The rules say that I am supposed to pass this along to five people...so without further ado I would like to present this award to:


Claudia over at Life in Scribbletown: I can't remember how exactly I found this blog, but I am so glad I did. Claudia shares great stories about her life with her girls and has been known to share some delicious recipes along the way as well!


Debbie over at Starting my life at 35...: Debbie is another great writer who is sharing her journey as she works toward new goals in her life. I love reading about her experiences and enthusiasm for this new path she's travelling!


Zoe over at Zoe Rights: Seriously, so funny. This woman has a real knack for telling a story and leaving you with a big smile on your face. Love the sense of humor.


Alex over at You Think It's Easy Being This Awesome?: I actually know Alex in real life, and she is one of the most hilarious people I have ever met. She starting blogging around the same time I did, and she's lots of fun to read. She just moved to London last week and I am looking forward to reading about her adventures!


V over at *uncorked: V has great stories to share and a real way with words. I don't know if it's her sarcasm or her love of the booze, but something about her keeps me coming back for more.




The second award is the Kreativ Blogger award. I'm not sure about the rules for this one so I'll just wing it! The winners for this award are:


Tiffany over at Electric Boogaloo: This was the first blog I ever started reading religiously. I found her years before I even thought of starting my own blog and I. Love. Her. Blog. She is an AMAZING writer and so funny. Her children are amazingly brilliant and supply or with many blogworthy stories.


Allison over at Tales From LaLa Land: Allison writes on a variety of topics and is always interesting. Whether it be a Top Chef review or tales from the life of a newlywed I always look forward to reading her posts.


Please stop by and visit all of these wonderful bloggers...you won't regret it!

Munchie Mondays - No Bake Cookies

Hello everyone! I'm sorry for my brief hiatus but I am back from Maine and will post about my fun weekend very soon.

In the meantime I thought I would share a quick and easy recipe that I got from Geoff's mom last year for No Bake cookies. They are not at all healthy, but oh so worth it!

Ingredients:
1 stick of butter
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup milk
4 T cocoa powder
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 tsp vanilla
3 cups oats

Instructions:
1. In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in sugar, milk and cocoa powder. Stir continuously until boiling.
2. Remove from heat once mixture has boiled for 1 1/2 minutes. Add peanut butter and vanilla. Stir until peanut butter has melted.
3. Stir in oats.
4. Use a spoon to drop on foil. Cool and eat!

So easy...so yummy...I make them ALL THE TIME in the fall and winter. They are a perfectly easy cold weather treat. Geoff LOVES them. I will post a picture next time I make them.

Enjoy!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

3-day weekend!

Sorry I didn't write much of a post today. I had a busy day at work as I am out tomorrow. Geoff and I are heading to Maine for a friend's wedding. I'm really looking forward to some relaxation, time with our friends, and a big party afterwards! I'll try to take pictures and will update you all next week. We are leaving tonight so I probably won't be here until we get back.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Oh boys

Boys.

So dumb.

My mom told me a story about my brother a couple of weeks ago that I want to share. My brother Bobby is 20, loves fishing, is a Marine stationed in North Carolina for the time-being, and has a girlfriend who has been with him since their junior year of high school. We'll call her C. C is a good girl. She's smart, going to college, active in lots of sports and clubs, and isn't much into drinking and partying. Despite all of this she puts up with my brother who chose to go into the military and LOVES to party. And fish. Let's not forget that he has always loved to fish.

Obviously with her in school in New England and him stationed anywhere from North Carolina to Afghanistan they don't get to see each other very much. When the times come that they do get to visit, they both get very excited.

C had been in Maine all summer and Bobby has been in NC dealing with military crap during the week and fishing with his buddies on the weekends. They got to see each other a little in early July when he was home on leave. C went back to school in southern New England starting Labor Day weekend, and they were both excited as they had made plans for Bobby to drive up and visit her because of the long weekend.

On the Friday of that weekend Bobby called my mom and related the following story to her.

Apparently, for two weeks only there are these HUGE fish that run through where my brother and his friends have been fishing. He got to spend one weekend catching them, but the next weekend was going to overlap with a previous engagement.

He called C the day before (maybe even the day of) he was supposed to leave to visit and said "Hey, I'm not coming. I'm going fishing."

C doesn't swear. C doesn't get upset easily or freak out. C is a very understanding girl.

C lost her shit.

"Bobby, you are coming up here! You made plans with me and my friends and you are f***ing coming! Don't you dare even THINK about going fishing instead!" There was more...but I'm pretty sure it all sounded a lot like that.

Bobby told this story to my mom as he was driving up to see C (haha). My mom scolded him for being such a jerk.

Bobby: "I didn't think it would be a big deal! I didn't know she'd get so upset!"

Mom: *Sigh*

Hopefully it's a lesson well learned for that boy. C...you go girl!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Apples, raspberries, and football, oh my!

This past weekend was pretty fun. Saturday was our anniversary and we went out to breakfast. I LOVE BREAKFAST. I had french toast, eggs, bacon, home fries, and coffee. Mmmmmm. Geoff had an omlette with pretty much everything in it. We were both happy with the deliciousness. We were pretty lazy for the rest of the day, except for a failed attempt to find the Trader Joe's in Warwick that I keep meaning to visit. We'll try again someday.

That night we went to the pool hall down the street for beer and...pool. The bartender was a complete ditz...as were the little bar maids that walk around in their little plaid skirts. Don't get me wrong, usually they do a good job. But lately there have been a lot of new people and these girls were ridiculous. The beer was delicous but it took FOREVER to get a refill...even though the place was not that crowded. Oh well. We still had fun drinking beer, eating fried ravioli, and playing pool. I actually didn't suck too bad! I've gotten better over the years...I used to miss the cue ball sometimes (don't ask) but now can make even some tricky angled shots!

Sunday after breakfast we went to a local orchard to pick raspberries and apples.



I swear it's too expensive now. Shouldn't these bags of apples be LESS expensive than in the grocery store? I mean I have to pick them myself! We had fun despite the cost, and it was a beautiful day for it too.

(I know the boy needs a haircut and a shave...I'm on it)

We got lots of delicious apples...I love them fresh! So sweet and tangy. Our raspberries are also a nice change for us and very sweet and delicious.
The rest of the day was devoted to football. It's so great to have the NFL season back in full swing! We drank beer and watched the teams. I wish the Pats had played that day, but we got to see them last night anyway. What a stressful game! I was so happy all weekend though. We love playing pool, apple picking was a delightful fall activity, and football is back.


What did you do this weekend? Any football fans out there?



Monday, September 14, 2009

Munchie Mondays - Ravioli Lasagna

Hello all! I hope you had a fabulous weekend. I know I did, but I'll share that in a later post.

Today I will share a recipe for Ravioli Lasagna that I found over at *uncorked awhile ago. I tried this recipe a few weeks ago, and while I ran into a little trouble it was DELICOUS. I know I say that about lots of recipes...but I wouldn't share them with you if I didn't love them!

I did things a little differently than she did, so I'll post the original recipe here and then share the changes that I made.

Ingredients:
1 24-26 oz. jar of marina sauce
2 20 oz. packages of refridgerated cheese ravioli
1 10 oz. box of frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed of excess liquid
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup parmesan cheese

Instructions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Spoon a thin layer of sauce into the bottom of a 9 x 13 inch baking dish.
3. On top of the sauce, layer a third of the ravioli, half of the spinach, half of the mozzarella, and a third of the sauce; repeat.
4. Top with remaining ravioli and sauce. sprinkle with parmesan.
5. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake until cheese is bubbling, 5-10 additional minutes.

Yum! Ok, now for what I really did. I always make my own sauce, and I use diced tomatoes, onion, garlic, tomato paste, pepper, oregano, olive oil...sometimes some other seasonings. I also substituted hamburger for the spinach because me and the boy are meat eaters...hard core. So while the ravioli was cooking I made my own sauce while cooking up some hamburger with garlic and oregano.

Next time I will make a less chunky sauce because oh my god. While this ended up delicious it was a pain in the ass to put together without the proper type of sauce. It was too chunky to spread and I was having major difficulties. I ended up not having enough sauce to cover the whole thing so I had to add a tiny bit of jarred pizza sauce as an emergency substitution. Everything came out fine though and Geoff and I were both pleasantly surprised by the final product. It smelled and tasted AMAZING. I can't wait to try it again.

Enjoy!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins and randomness

1. That's a horrible, ignorant, and insensitive way to be.

2. Sometimes I feel ignored...and like someone else gets a lot more attention; I'm over here!

3. The possibilities include: staying at my job and taking classes for free, quitting my job and finding one I actually find fulfilling, saying screw it to jobs and going on a cross country road trip...with no money.

4. Mac'n'cheese casserole is one of my favorite cool day recipes.

5. How will you know how much our family needs and loves you when we don't know how to tell you and can't be there for you enough?

6. One of the most beautiful things is the combination of a sunset and a stormy sky.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to making pizza and relaxing, tomorrow my plans include going out to breakfast and out for drinks for our anniversary and Sunday, I want to go apple picking, make apple zucchini muffins, and sit on the porch drinking coffee!

Wow...that was a hard one!

So the weather here is cold and sad. I love fall, but I really am not ready to let go of summer yet. With the 2 months of rain we had, it didn't feel like we had a summer at all. Now it feels like time for sweaters, warm socks, and comfort food. Geoff and I are planning on going apple picking this weekend if the rain lets up. Then I can do some baking and we'll have nice healthy snacks for the week too.

I'm really looking forward to the weekend. Even though this was a short work week, I really need a break again. Nothing like wine, books, coffee, and rest to make me happy again!

Yesterday's run SUCKED! It was partly a mental thing. For all of my other runs I've been all pumped up and looking forward to them. This time I had to force myself to go and I really wasn't in the mood. My breathing felt off and my leg muscles HURT. My calves kept tensing up and then I got a cramp in my foot. Also, the weather was cloudy and cold. I did the whole work-out though so I guess that says something. I know sometimes people just have bad runs, so I'm not giving up. It will get better again! I'm giving myself the next two days off though. It's no fun running in the rain anyway.

What are your plans for the weekend? Are you ready for fall or still grasping on to the final bits of summer?

Thursday, September 10, 2009

3 Years

This weekend Geoff and I will celebrate our 3rd year of being a couple.



We met in the summer of 2006 while working for a non-profit, and found out we went to the same college, had the same major, and would have two classes together that coming fall. What started out as a fun summer fling turned into a serious relationship.

We have been through a lot together, right from the beginning. And though I know it hasn't been easy, he has stood by me through everything. He's my best friend, and I am his. I can't wait to go on more adventures together and there isn't anyone else I'd rather have by my side when facing the tough battles life has thrown and surely will throw my way.

I love you Geoffrey.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

That dog? HAS A BAG ON IT'S A**!

Really...I don't even know what to say about this...so here's a picture to get us started.




Seriously? It's bad enough seeing dogs walking around in sweaters and such...but are you freaking kidding me here? Do these dogs have no dignity? They are walking around with a BAG ON THEIR ASS! No self respecting dog would be caught dead in this contraption. And no self respecting owner should want to be seen with a dog wearing a BAG ON IT'S ASS! Honestly? This is worse than just picking up the poo yourself. If I had to wrestle this thing on Bandit before every walk we'd both end up too tired to go out. And I'm pretty sure we could only walk at night when no one would see us because oh my god! That dog has a BAG ON IT'S ASS! Come on people!

In other news I am still running. I ran last night and it was my first day of week two, which means running for a minute and a half than walking for two minutes for a total of twenty minutes. This was my best run yet. It's getting easier! I don't feel like dying at minute 5 anymore. I'm very proud of myself for keeping the motivation and happy that my body seems to be responding.

What's new in your world? Seen anything crazy lately that you just have to share?

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

How is it that even long weekends go by too fast?

I had a great time during Diane's (Geoff's mom) visit. She arrived Friday night with peanuts and a bottle of wine (LOVE!) just as I was pulling the pizza out of the oven. We sat around the table laughing, drinking, and eating. It was delightful. The next morning I made blueberry muffins (fresh blueberries!) while Geoff made eggs and homefries (with the potatoes picked from our garden!). It was DELICIOUS. Then we all relaxed on the sunny porch with our coffees for a good part of the morning.

Once we got the urge to move, we went to Benny's so that Di could get a gift for Geoff's niece's birthday party. They had these great wagons there that she wanted to grab...lift up seats for storage and seat belts! She also bought me a pie plate (my other disappeared during the holiday season last year) and a rolling pin! No more using wine bottles to roll out dough! I'm ecstatic.

When we returned home, Geoff put together the wagon and I made the coconut custard pie that I mentioned in my last post. We all drooled over the smells from the kitchen until it was finally time to eat. Later, we went to the pool hall down the road for a beer and then headed to Waterfire since Diane had never been. We had a great time there as well and enjoyed some wine while watching a jazz band. Di got some good pictures of the fires to show people back home.

Sunday morning Di had to leave by 10:30 to make it to Madison's 2nd birthday party back in Maine. We had leftover blueberry muffins and omelettes made with cherry tomatoes from the garden...YUM! We like food around here...can you tell?

After she left, I went for a run. I'm proud of myself for keeping it up this long. I know, it's only week one but this is me and running we're talking about here so making it a whole week is a freaking miracle. It was pretty hard this time as I'd taken both Friday and Saturday off, but I did it. I just wish my neighborhood wasn't so hilly!

We spent the rest of the day reading, relaxing, and being lazy. Same with Monday. Though we did go "biking for booze" Monday evening, haha. We wanted to get more wine and go for a bike ride, so we biked about 3 miles to a liquor store then stopped at a neighborhood bar on the way home for a rest beer. Upon arriving home Geoff made some TASTY burgers (love you worcestershire sauce!) and we cracked open the wine.

It was a glorious weekend and I wish I could go back and relive it as today has been pretty annoying. I have a serious case of the Mondays (yes I know it's Tuesday) and I'm already looking forward to another weekend.

How did you spend your long weekend?

Monday, September 7, 2009

Munchie Mondays-Coconut (Custard) Pie

Sorry this post is so late in the day...it's a holiday, ok? Better late than never, right?

I found this recipe on the Betty Crocker website earlier this summer, and was amazed by how simple it was to make. It said it was a coconut pie, and I was picturing something more like a coconut cake. This was really more of a coconut custard pie. Though I wasn't expecting it, I LOVED it. I made it again this weekend since it's the last weekend of summer and I think of this as more of a summer pie. Geoff and his mom are also big fans. We finished it off in about 24 hours. I wish I'd made it more often...it's so easy AND yummy!

Ingredients:
1 cup flaked or shredded coconut
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup Bisquick mix
1/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
2 cups milk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
4 eggs

Instructions:
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 9-inch pie plate.
2. In medium bowl, stir all ingredients until blended. Pour into pie plate.
3. Bake 50 to 55 minutes or until golden brown and knife inserted in center comes out clean. Cover and refrigerate any remaining pie.




Doesn't that sound simple? It hardly takes any time to prepare, and while the bake seems like a long wait, it's so worth it. Enjoy!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins

Happy Friday reader(s)! I have lots of work to do, so it's time for another Friday Fill-in!

1. I feel content, relaxed, and happy.

2. Going out for breakfast is always fun.

3. Right now, I can hear these things: typing, chairs moving, and office chatter.

4. I feel really good this week and I'm glad I've taken up running.

5. The last time I saw my friends was MUCH too long ago.

6. I have really been looking forward to this Labor day weekend.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to relaxing and preparing for Geoff's mom's arrival tonight, tomorrow my plans include going out to eat, hanging out with Geoff and his mom, and probably going to Waterfire and Sunday, I want to make a big breakfast, go for a run, and relax!

I'm very excited for this weekend and have been looking forward to it for awhile. Geoff's mom is coming tonight and staying until Sunday morning. We'll make dinners and breakfasts, check out some local fun, go out to eat, and have fun! I love that woman...she's da bomb dot com yo! (I've been wanting to say that for awhile now...don't judge me!) And since it's a long weekend, Geoff and I will still have plenty of time to relax and do whatever we want.

Also, I went for another run yesterday! Woot! It was hard because I was tired, sore, and it was hotter outside...but I did it. That's two of the last three days! Who am I???

Have a great weekend everyone! What are your plans?

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Jen the...runner?

Yesterday I ran.

This might seem like nothing to you people...especially when you find out how much I ran (not much). Let me give you a little background. I HATE RUNNING. People who run for fun confuse me because running? Not fun. I make fun of those people. Why run when you can sit around eating? I've only ever tried it a few times and in my experience everything they say about it is one big fat lie. It doesn't give me more energy, it makes me more tired. It doesn't make me feel good, it makes me feel sick. It doesn't help me sleep better, it makes me sleep the same (not much) only then I'm sore. RUNNING SUCKS! Also, though I like to bike and hike I like to do so leisurely. I may be thin, but I am VERY out of shape. The slightest bit of exercise leaves me pretty winded.

So let me repeat myself.

Yesterday. I. Ran.

And I didn't hate it.

In fact, I kind of LIKED it.

And I plan on running again...maybe even REGULARLY.

I was inspired by a post I saw over at PooBou.com, where Cindy (the blogger there) started the Couch-to-5K running plan. I checked out the site and was all...I could TOTALLY do that! So I stopped at Target on the way home yesterday and bought a sports bra (yes, that's how much I work out...didn't even own a sports bra) and a cheap little watch with the stop watch/timer capibilities. When I got home...I ran. Only a little, but still. This being my first week I'm supposed to switch off between running for 60 seconds and walking for 90 seconds for twenty minutes. I know, I know...soooo easy right? Not for me. Actually, it was both easier and harder than I thought it would be. But you know what? I felt GOOD after. Ok...really I felt sweaty, a little shaky, tired, and a little sore. But I felt happy! Proud even! I motivated myself to run even though I was tired after work...and I didn't give up on the running parts even at the end when it was getting really hard (because hills? OH MY GOD I HATE THEM). I was all...whooo! I'm so awesome! I'm a runner!

Well, I will be.

Someday.

Today, my poor leggies are pretty sore...but I like that! I plan on running again tomorrow. My goal is to run in the Beach to Beacon (that's a 10k!) in Maine next summer.

Hopefully my legs will have stopped hurting by then.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Brawling Baby Ball Players

While reading the latest post over at Zoe Rights, I was reminded of an article I read recently in the local paper, The Valley Breeze. The title of the article, "Babe Ruth Season Ends in Controversy", doesn't do the story justice. Basically a bunch of 13-15 year old ball players and their parents turn a fun, end of the year championship game into a near all out brawl normally saved only for the major leagues. Here are some of the highlights:


The incident, which saw moms and dads scurry onto the field to physically restrain some players,
broke out during ninth inning of the winner-take-all championship game between Barone's Construction
and Angelo's Hair Salon.

Garceau protested the play to the umpire, maintaining that the batter had stepped across the plate.
The umpire ruled differently, and when Garceau persisted, he was tossed from the game.

That drew a strong protest from his players, several of whom left the dugout and began shouting.

Almost simultaneously, one Barone's player charged the Angelo's dugout in an apparent attempt
to reach an opposing player, and both benches emptied. A coach restrained the player, and other
players were contained by parents and other coaches.

The umpiring crew tossed the player who charged the dugout, and when the matter did not quell
immediately, ended the game and awarded a forfeit win to Angelo's...But some parents were still
upset and began shouting at the other side, prompting someone to call police. Police responded
and the problem disappeared, and so did the season.


I mean what's baseball without a little drama and fighting, right? The full article can be read here.

I don't remember too many instances of such dramatics back when I played softball. Most of the parents and kids were pretty well behaved. I do remember one time when the opposing team's coach (his name was Tux and he was a grade-A asshole) made the female ump cry. After the game my mom (who has a lot of sarcasm and attitude in her little 5'4" body) made a comment about what a jerk Tux was. His daughter, who was a grade ahead of me and more popular I might add, overheard and stormed over to us. "Don't talk about my dad like that you, b****!" I was too embarrassed to speak. My younger brother, Bobby, who was ten at the time, didn't care and took action.

"Don't talk to my mom that way!"

It went on from there, but I slowly skulked away and hid in the car. Hey, I was 13 at the time and easily embarrassed! Today it's hard to say whether I would have informed all of them of how ridiculous and rude they were being or if I'd join in...depends on what day you catch me!

Do any of you have interesting stories from your days of childhood sports or extracurriculars?