Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Soooo Excited

Today I bought a garlic press. Yes, I know finally! j/k I’ve been eyeing this garlic press thing for a while now ever since I saw Dave use one on Food Network. This cooking thing has become my newest hobby and I forgot how expensive hobbies can become. That garlic press was $15 bucks! Then they’re the cookbooks, the spices that aren’t already in my cupboard and extra ingredients that I don’t buy on a regular basis just to try new recipes but it’s all worth it IF the dish turns out ok. My mom always asks me what I want for my birthday or for Christmas and I usually ask for a gift card from Banana, but this year I received pottery barn dishes for my birthday and for Christmas I’ve asked for a cooking class. I can’t wait until this Spring when they’re back in session.

Not only am now into reading and buying all sorts of cookbooks but I’m also glued to cooking reality shows. Top Chef is my show, so much so that it now comes before Law and Order on my TV viewing line up and that says a lot since 99% of what I watch on TV is L&O. Last Wednesday when I went to my dad’s for Thanksgiving I expected to get my Top Chef view age on but low and behold the good people at Time Warner decided that Chapel Hill wasn’t worthy of having Bravo on their TV line up but instead they got the Inspirational channel. Hmmm channel geared toward Gay men or an Inspirational Channel. Since I have a bunch of prayers out there for some friends going through a tough time, I’m going to refrain from saying out loud or writing on here what I think about that. I was a little pissed that the next town over which was literally two blocks from my dad’s place had Bravo on their line up. Either way, thanks to the miracle of Tivo I was able to catch up.

Monnie posted a few of her favorite Thanksgiving recipes and her “Southern Comfort Cake” caught my eye. Here’s a picture of my version. It was GOOD, slap your mama good!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

La Reina

Celia Cruz is/was the Queen of Salsa and after listening to most of her last CD on the road this weekend I've come to the conclusion that if I could go back in time I'd be her back up singer. I can't sing, nor do I speak Spanish other then the usual 5 phrases you should know if you're in a Spanish speaking country but I'd have figured it out. Celia Cruz was amazing and had an amazing career, I'm just sad that I didn't discover her music until after she passed away.

So if anyone reading this saw a crazy looking chick in a silver civic on 95, it was the drums. They made me do it.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope everyone is enjoying a safe and wonderful Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Anonymous Request

A certain Anonymous Fly by night commentor said: "One liner: Show me the cats!". Well here you go. A day in the life of Pierre and Olivier.

Here Olivier is doing what he does best, beg for wet food. This meowling happens daily once at 7:00 AM and again in the evenings when I get home.

When he's not chasing his brother around the house at 2 in the morning Pierre passes his time getting ready for his evening job.

Apparently the light coming into the living room was too much for Olivier and he couldn't find his nap time eye mask.

Clearly all that fur doesn't help keep them warm so they have to snuggle up during the winter.

Saturday, November 18, 2006


My mom and I are heading to Europe for Christmas and we booked direct round trip flights from JFK to Brussels. I'm a loyal United customer because I have so many miles with them but they wanted an arm and a kidney for a flight from DC to Brussels so I thought hey it would be fun to go up to NYC for a few days hang out and then fly with my mom since the ticket from NYC only cost one arm. Best laid plans and all that jazz....

I just received an email from Delta saying they are sorry for the inconvenience but on New Years Day when we leave we're now flying directly to ATL then on to JFK. They suddenly canceled the direct flight from Brussels to JFK for that day. WTF?!?!? How much sense does that make for me to fly over NY only to go back to NY a few hours later then I eventually have to get back to DC a few days later, so I'm flying over two place I need to be. Oh and the customer service chick I spoke to who said there's nothing they could do and couldn't compensate me in anyway. Fuck you, die bitch.

How's that for being honest.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Not so Honest

I just finished reading Diva (in Demand)’s post where she has one liners about how she really feels about people in her life and started thinking about my own honest assessments of people around me. Despite the moniker, I’m not as Honest as I’d like to think. I hold my tongue a lot because I’m generally non confrontational and nice with people I know. I’ve had a former manager at work describe me as someone who is straightforward, honest, and isn’t afraid to speak her mind. I agree with her assessment to a certain extent but I’m not always straightforward or honest. There are a lot of things I hold back on because I don’t want to be confrontational or hurt someone’s feelings. It’s also because I can be judgmental (90% of which I keep to myself) because as I get older, I realize we don’t all have the same thought process nor do we need to.

A friend of mine just asked me for a personal favor that would have included lending her money until pay day. Except with my family, I have a policy of only lending what I can afford to give away. I felt very awkward telling her I don’t feel comfortable doing that and although I know she’s disappointed she says she understands my decision. I’m not sure why I felt uncomfortable saying no, which is another problem I have. My friend expressed that she would never put me in a bad financial situation and I believe her but in the back of my mind I thought, she succeed in putting herself in a bad situation financially so why can’t she clear up whatever issue it is that’s keeping her from buying something outright or with her own credit card unless its an emergency (this situation wasn’t an emergency). This is where I should have stepped in and told her what I just wrote but I stopped because I didn’t want to sound too judgmental (which I can be when it comes to finances) and if she made the decision to ask me for this favor then she’s probably justified the expense in her mind and nothing I would say would make her budge.

Everywhere around me I have friends and associates who don’t have the same ideas regarding sacrificing to reach an end goal that I do. In fact my mother would say I don’t have the same idea that she does and I consider her the ultimate sacrificer (is that even a word?). During our retreat we had a friend’s husband come in and do a basic financial planning exercise. If we called bad financial planning and decisions a disease I could honestly say a majority of the group is dying from bad decisions. Will anyone make the changes they said they would to get on the right path to their goal? Maybe. I’d like to think I have sound, fool proof financial habits but in reality I don’t. I sat down with a financial planner earlier this year after forking over big bucks and have a clear goal I need to strive for but find myself constantly tripping over my own feet. I’m trying an experiment as of December 1 (not including xmas presents which will have its separate budget) and I’ll see how successful I am.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Dear Blog,

I apologize for neglecting you over the last week and a half. I’ve been crazy busy with the Armenians who were in town but that’s not an excuse because I’ve been busy before and had no problem blogging. I’m not sure if I’m going through writers block or if I’m suffering from topic withdrawal. Life is good but I just haven't had anything really exciting to blog about lately.

This weekend I made my first Indian meal and it wasn’t too bad. As my own critic I thought the Ginger Chicken Kebabs I made were tasty but the Dal (Lentils/split peas) were ok. There was something missing and I can’t put my finger on it yet. I figure I’ll have to make it again this week and step it up regarding flavor. I made enough for dinner on Saturday and for my book club meeting tonight where only the Hostess and another of our friends showed up. Everyone who said they’d attend suddenly had other pressing issues to deal with. I’ll have to rethink my food choices next time I host it since I have so much food left over that I’m going to have to work hard to eat so it won’t go to waste. Maybe I’ll make those stuffed mushrooms I’d planned on making for lunch this week.

Saturday was such a gloriously fabulous day and I was able to spend a few hours outside, volunteering for the Washington Humane Society’s remote adoption unit. Basically we sat outside of a pet store in DC and let the dog’s cuteness attract potential adopters. I took the dog I was in charge of for a walk and managed to get a few people who were eating outside at the local restaurants to come check our booth out.

Thank god the elections are over, I’m so sick and tired of those attacking political ads that only lessen my faith in our country’s political system. No one talks about the issues anymore just about something the other candidate said out of context 20 years ago. I can’t imagine that the people of the DC/MD/VA metropolitan area approve of these tactics and we all need to stand together to get them to STOP! Luckily for me I live in DC and not MD otherwise I would have been bombarded by phone calls as well.

Remember a few months ago when I blogged about cheating on my hairdresser with a new person and a new salon? Well it’s been a blessing and a curse. The new place is great, I make an appointment and I’m usually seated in the stylist’s chair within 10 to 15 minutes of my appointment time. Now the curse is that I’m not used to going to a person who actually honors appointments so I’m not used to making appointments way in advance when I know the hairdressers I usually go to will take in most folks first come, first serve. So when I called yesterday to make an appointment with the stylist I’ve been going to at the new shop I learned that she’s booked until the 24th. At this place there’s no such thing as squeezing someone in unless there’s a cancellation. I guess I’ll have to schedule my appointments well in advance from now on.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

America, America!

Have you ever driven or walked down a street in your town and looked at it through the eyes of a visitor? I’m doing that this week and DC looks a lot different to me; crisper, cleaner even. One of my colleagues from Arme.nia is here with a delegation of officials and since this is her first trip to the U.S. I asked her what she thought and her initial response was that it was surreal almost like a movie.

As I drive around DC I look around and see my adopted city through the eyes of my colleague and realize how great it is here. As I compare it to her home town it just reinforces what I sometimes forget when being bombarded by trivial political ads that don’t address the issues, when I realize that our politicians are spending our hard earned tax dollars on a lost cause. I realize that despite our issues we live in a great country.