Friday, December 31, 2010

Goodbye Twenty Ten!

(My Absolute Favorite Event of 2010)
We've laughed, we've cried, sometimes within moments of doing one, we've done the other. We've been overjoyed and underwhelmed. We have great highs and some pretty (average) lows. It has been a rollercoaster ride 2010, and now we part as friends. I will look back at you fondly because within that 12 month span of time, I have grown and changed all for the better.

Times I've loved most of all:
  • Rescuing My Little Remy- it is true love
  • Weddings- being in them, being at them, planning them
  • Being a bride- now matter how much I do not like the spotlight, It was the most fun day of my life
  • Having a hot lil groom- Man! I love that face!
  • Camping trips- fires a-blazing, s'mores a-roasting, trails a-hiked
  • 4th of July in Telluride- It was like being in a postcard
  • Picnics in the park- though we didn't particularly like picking burrs out of the blanket
  • Reuniting with old friends- always pick up wherever we left off
  • The Freakin' Honeymoon- Woot woot! Pura Vida!
  • Falling in love again- at least once a week

I am a New Year's sap. May everyone have a safe, but boisterous night!

Two years ago, at 11:59 p.m., Shawn dropped down on one knee...

Thursday, December 30, 2010

A Very Married Christmas

Hubby and I had a wonderful Christmas 2010. It was the first we have celebrated as a married couple. It was also the first with my dog-child, Remy. It was also the first that neither of us saw our families. I kept wishing for a teleportation device to whisk us away to the blizzardy-cold frozen tundras of New Jersey and Illinois, but, alas, those Christmas dreams were not realized. On to wish for it another year!

Hope all had a very wonderful Christmas. Remember the reason for the season. God Bless one and all!!

(This is Remy's "smile." His ferociousness cracks me up. He's wishing you all a holiday full of wonder.)

The Sun Rises in the East

If you live in Arizona, you know these were taken about a week and a half ago (before Winter came crashing down on the Valley). There were taken at 7 a.m. on my drive to work. I had kept saying that I wanted to photograph the incredible sunrises on my early commute. They are about 5 minutes apart (stopping at a couple of stop signs and traffic lights; no twisting my body around while driving, safety first), but the color variance is striking.

Speaking of the sudden season change...
One day we had 83 degree heat (yes, deep, deep into December) and the next...

BANG! Our tree dropped all of its leaves. It was literally overnight. Hubster had a swell time raking it and bagging it. Little Remy didn't want anything to do with the piles of leaves.

So there you have it! Proof that Chandler gets more than one season. So what if it happens all in one week?

Reindeer Games

At the CW6 Holiday Party, we had a bit of fun. One of our games was to dress up a team member as a reindeer. The materials were a dark brown shirt, 2 felt "hooves," a white felt "belly," a pair of tan pantyhose, six deflated balloons, a red foam "nose," and two really creepy fur eyebrows. I knew as soon as we pulled the nylons over Doug's face that we had won.

What did we win, you ask?

Why a bag of reindeer poop!
**chocolate covered raisins and chocolate covered peanuts

Candy Coated Everything

There is nothing like taking something beautifully nutritious and drowning it in caramel, chocolate and cookie chunks. 'Tis the season, right?
Isn't Happy Husband cute?

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The Joy of Baking!

Let the Season of Sugar officially commence!

Every December, as far back as I could remember, I bake Christmas cookies - a lot of them. I have done the tried and true recipes (the chocolate chip, the oatmeal, and the holiday staples - sugar cookies and snickerdoodles). A few years ago, I dove into Mom's cookbook collection and selected the Betty Crocker Cooky Book from the 60s or 70s. I cannot praise that masterpiece of baker's delight enough!

I have tried to recreate a couple German cookies that I fell for during that year: Zimtsterne and Pffernusse. Hubster and I love spiced cookies and these two have a real zing! Zimtsterne, so heavenly-cinnamony,  are rolled out then cut into star-shapes and basted with an eggwhite-wash before baking. I have also seen them iced.* Pffernusse have a good dose of black pepper in them, but that heat is subdued by the dusting of powder sugar on the outside (after baking). The cloves, ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, and nutmeg make this a real warming treat in a white snowball.

*My Zimtsterne were a bit different because I do not own a cookie cutter that is not in a Halloween shape. So I made mine into a drop cookie, making them a softer-pillowy texture unlike the hard and crunchy texture they are "supposed" to be. Also, the photo above is from (I am writing this at a time inconvenient for plugging my camera into computer... tee hee hee)

Friday, December 17, 2010

For the Children

I know I have had a long day at the office; it is evident in the recent goings-on in my mind. Several times in the past hour, I could swear I heard a baby's cries. "Not normal," I thought to my (already overheated brain) self. Again, a baby cries.

"I really do have baby fever!"

Wow, not even a minute later a pair of children run by my desk. Today is our TV station's Childrens' Party.Whoops!

What a way to realize that I do have babies on the brain. Is it also normal to blush when I embarrass myself only in my head?

Thursday, December 16, 2010


Behold ladies and... well... ladies! I have discovered a miracle solvent to clean just about anything! Okay it is a powder that is not a solvent, but it certainly solved a cleaning dilemma we have faced.

Our fantastic kitchen knives cut cut about anything with the greatest of ease. I use them all (bread knife, paring knife, fish knife, santuku knife, slicing knife, chef's knife, etc) and Happy Husband uses the steak knives to cut it all. All of this chopping/slicing/dicing/mincing/julienne-ing has caused these beloved kitchen features to accumulate rust spots here and there (okay, I admit that the steak knives are fine and it is only the ones I use that have the blemishes).
The genius customer service-guy at Home Depot (if you have a cleaning problem thay are the dudes to talk to!) suggested Bar Keepers Friend to keep my gear spotless. Grab a rag - not a kitchen towel, like I did, dampen, then dust it with the powder. Scrub the knife for just a few moments, washing off after no more than a minute. Voila! My wedding present knives look as good as new!

But wait! There's more that this "Friend" will take care of for you! My glass cooktop (inherited from the previous owners of our home, who apparently burned food on the stove surface more than cooked food in a pot) has been cleaned to better-than-when-we-bought-the-house condition! Our everyday stainless steel flatware shines and sparkles! Hoping I can get my hands on Hubby's golf clubs to get them twinkling soon!

Go here for a coupon (it's 55 cents, but for such an inexpensive product, that discount creates a real bargain!)
If I didn't work myself into such a scrub-a-dub frenzy, I would have taken some before and after photos.


Thursday, December 9, 2010


Saw "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" last week. I give it several thumbs up. Excited to see the final installment this summer :) It is a little bit scarier and darker than previous films in the franchise. Let me know what you thought of it

Not the best start to the day

7:15 am:
  • Attack of Morning Coffee down front of white cardigan; too far from home to drive back and change.
  • Must wear brown splotchy badge of defeat until return home at 6 pm
8:45 am:
  • Toner Explosion from ancient technology known as fax machine
  • Hands blackened, white cardigan unbelievably remained unscathed
10:00 am:
  • Cuticles sliced by toilet paper dispenser (seriously, the roll was waaaay too big for the plastic dispenser)
  • Developed mild paranoia will contract deadly tropical disease despite "antimicrobial" sticker
Currently is 12:00 pm. Hoping bad luck really does come in threes and I am done for the day. Ugh. I want to crawl under my desk and hide from my future.

***UPDATE: ***
12:30 pm:
  • Phone died (this may have been averted if I did not leave charger at home)
2:00 pm:
  • choked a bit on a Granny Smith Apple; feeling intimidated by equally raw and crunchy baby carrots
The stakes in this game of bad luck are getting a little high for me. As of 2:10 pm, have not found voodoo doll in office. Searching for alternative explanations to "Unfortunate Happenings" phenomena

Listening to: "Fleur de Saison" by Emilie Simon

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Monday, December 6, 2010

Le Jour Vingt-Neuf
3 Wishes

1. I wish for incredible health...
2. I wish for adequate wealth...
3. I wish for all your dreams to come true!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Steam Comin' Out My Ears

Le Jour Vingt-Huit
Something that Stresses Me Out

Traffic! There are very few things that make me completely lose my cool, but traffic is far and away has its finger on my hair trigger. I drive with my windows up so my fellow commuters do not hear the incredible obscenities I spew. Yes, I am that crazy woman that waves her hands violently, gesturing (no I don't flip the bird) emphatically to the offenders.

The biggest problem is that I commute for over an hour EACH WAY to/from work. I spend a lot of my waking hours in my dirty, manual transmission, two-door car. Something's gotta give, and it most likely will not be all the wackadoos on the 60 or I-10.

Stress is my biggest problem. It eats me up and I have a very difficult time relaxing (as in I really do not know how).

Here is my shortlist of meltdown triggers:

1. Money (almost any talk about it creates a huge knot in my shoulders followed by complete tailspin)
2. Being late (me and Hubby being late really, really stresses me out, more-so than others being late)
3. Not finishing a project (it will be always top of mind, even in situations where it should be the last thing I am thinking about)
4. Arguing with Others (I am desperately trying to work on my assertiveness; Shawn would disagree ;) )

Listening to: "Sleepy Seven" by Bonobo

****I need to chill after all that stressful thinking***

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Friday, December 3, 2010

My Family, My Heart

Le JourVingt-Six
A Picture of My Family

I love my nutty family! Everyone of us is a totally different flavor of fun. This super-family has grown ten-fold since I married, too. Lookout! We're everywhere!

Scoobs, Kid Sister, Bubs, Grandma, Mamasita, Daddy-O, Moi, Mi Amour, Mama K, Daddy C, Grandpa, C, Jay and Cor

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Adventures in Food City

GIANT, HUMONGOUS, INCREDIBLE CONGRATULATIONS to two of my friends (K and N) who were each recently engaged! They are superb women and deserve the best of the best. D and T are the luckiest men in the world.

You all make me smile an ever present obnoxiously ear-to-ear grin. I love love!

With that said...

In my search for champagne to celebrate the blessed events, I ran into a local grocery in a neighborhood that can be at best time described as "sketchy." I bee-lined to the booze and was quickly followed a a diminutive man. He spoke to me in mumbled Spanish.

"I'm sorry, what did you say? Say it again slower," I smiled.
"What is your name?"
"[Your shoes are dangerous on this floor. You can fall]," he said*translated* gesturing to my stiletto boots.
"I like them!" I smiled, still perusing the limited bottle collection.
"Yes, yes! Sexy shoes!" he said in emphatic English.
I laughed, "Thank you." I motioned to leave the area, decided the discount bottle wasn't really worth the $2 cost. The man followed me, speaking more rapidly, as I took a few steps.
"Sexy Shoes! Camarones! Sexy Shoes Camarones!"
I laughed again, obviously confused. "It was nice to meet you."
I walked to the bread aisle, he followed. "Sexy Shoes! Camarones! Sexy Shoes Camarones!" he exclaimed. To the juice aisle, "Sexy Shoes! Camarones! Sexy Shoes Camarones!" To the produce, "Sexy Shoes! Camarones! Sexy Shoes Camarones!"
After this third aisle I booked it out the store, straight to my car, keys in hand. "Do you work at the bank, he asked"
"No, I'm going to a friend's house," clearly I stopped making sense because I was so confused. He waved goodbye from the store exit as I drove away. I called the hubster right away, cracking up. He forbid me from ever walking into another store of that name.

If you, or someone you know speaks Spanish, knows slang of any kind, can you ask them to explain why that man was yelling "Shrimp" at me. I promise I was not wearing and shellfish or seafood at the time.

Congratulations, my dearest friends. I will only be harassed for you and you alone!

Music, Sweet Music

Le Jour Vingt-Cinq
First 10 Songs When Ipod is on Shuffle

1. "Watch You Sleeping" by Blue Foundation
2. "Crawl" by Kings of Leon
3. "Re: Stacks" by Bon Iver
4. "Boy With a Coin" by Iron and Wine
5. "Into the Groove" by Madonna
6. "Dare" by Gorillaz
7. "Why Do You Let Me Stay Here?" by She & Him
8. "In the Waiting Line" by Zero 7
9. "American Woman" by Lenny Kravitz
10. "Wonderwall" by Oasis

I actually do not have very many songs on my ipod. I usually listen to random playlists, the radio, and stations (one of my favorites is Broken Bells station).

Happy Hanukkah!

I may not be Jewish, but I love the food! When I was in elementary school (2nd-4th grades), I got to learn all about Judaism -as much as a little kid with a Baptist background could understand anyway. I particularly enjoyed when my second grade teacher brought in latkes, rugelach, and I {think it was} kugel for us kids to enjoy during Hanukkah. We made dreidels, lit the menorah, and snacked on chocolate coins. I loved every second; it was so different than Christmas, yet felt so familiar. Here is my recipe for yum-o latkes.

2 c. grated potato (wring out to removed excess moisture)
1 egg, beaten
1 Tb. grated onion
2 Tb. matzo meal (or flour, if you don't have it)
1 tsp. salt
1/2 c. peanut oil for frying

Mix together first 5 ingredients. Heat oil in pan until hot (drop a water droplet in it to see if it sizzles, if it does, then you are ready to party). Place large spoonfuls of potato mixture into oil, pressing down until flat (approx. 1/2 inch thick). Brown on both sides, then drain on paper towels. Serve piping hot with sour cream and/or applesauce.