Saturday, November 30, 2013

Puppies and Such

I have gotten to the point that pretty much all I do when I have a day off is cook. I cook and clean and cook and clean and cook and clean. It is a never ending cycling of generating lots of very dirty dishes. Then wash. Then repeat. And it takes a lot of time. I wonder what I might accomplish if I didn't spend all my time cooking.

Anyhow, that's just a little aside. This exciting week - most of which I had off - has gone by in a whirl. The week started out with a little, sort of, vacation. I worked monday, but I went and hung out with Penny.

Oopsie, where is the nose.
As exhibited in this photo, Penny was just about to pop out some puppies. Her mom wanted someone there in case it happened while she wasn't at home. So I lugged over my computer (not a laptop) and Otto and I hung out with Penny for the day. I (sort of) worked and Penny and Otto sat around and looked cute. Penny did not have puppies, at least not on Monday.

There was a lot of this going on!

Penny did have puppies on Wednesday early am and on Thursday I got to hang out! Be prepared for major cuteness.

I can't even think of funny captions, they are so stinking cute, who can do anything but say 'ahhhh'.

The rest of the week has been a blur of food. I cooked a bunch of new stuff this week. And it was all extra tasty. Let's take a stroll through the menu.

Veggie mash, aka I ate a parsnip!  What's up with parsnips?  I am pretty sure I have never eaten one before this week. They look difficult. And not necessarily tasty in any way. However, I saw a recipe for autumn veggie mash and thought, parsnip why not. It actually included parsnips, carrots, cauliflower and roasted garlic. AND was super easy. AND was extra tasty. AND, it's possible I made a lot!


Look how cute, pumpkins now come in boxes!

Art shot
I also made much too much pumpkin pie. I took one to thanksgiving and ended up being the only person who likes pumpkin pie. Hmm. I also decided that the main reason I like pumpkin pie is the whip cream. Must remember to make whip cream next year.

Pre party piece, whoops! How gauche. 
And can I mention that the worst thing about making pies to take to a party, is that you can't taste them! If you make cookies, you can just eat one (or two) and no one will know. But if you have a piece of pie, whoops, you suddenly are the person with zero self control!

Taj Mahal chicken. OMG. I may or my not have mentioned that my favorite cook book writer just came out with her second cookbook (Well Fed 2, if you haven't bought it, or the original Well Fed, do so immediately your taste buds will be so happy, I promise). I have been slowly making my way through some of the new recipes. Her recipes sometimes seem super wacky, like she was just making shit up. For example, the above pictured chicken has applesauce in it? I mean what's up with that? It also called for 1 and only 1 tablespoon of tomato paste. I usually avoid such recipes because then I'm left with a lot of tomato paste!  But I jumped in despite these recipe quirks and let me mention that is is one of the more amazing dishes I have had recently............. SO GOOD!!!! Particularly when it tops her coconut cauliflower, which is her version of sticky rice.

Which brings me to this. Zucchini soup. Let me go on the record stating that I hate zucchini. I think it's worthless. It tastes bland. It grows too abundantly (meaning everyone keeps wanting to give you some, even though you don't want it). I don't cook it. I don't put it in salads. And I certainly don't put it in my garden. Well, lately I have been getting tired of my beef broth. I make it, then have to force myself to drink it, because I know it's extra good for me. Well, my favorite cook book writer, Melissa Joulwan (see above, Well Fed), has a zucchini soup in her new book. (It's actually called silky gingered zucchini soup.) And, well, I trust her. So my bored of broth self decided to whip up a batch of soup, even though it was zucchini soup. I was super dubious the entire time it was cooking, because it just looked like a bunch of broth with stupid zucchini pieces floating in it, but OMG, extra tasty. It's all creamy, as if it has a whole bunch of, well, cream in it, but it's just zucchini and a few spices and broth.  

And finally, let me leave you with some cuteness, a down coat on the floor makes for the perfect bed when your mom is sitting close by typing a blog.......


Sunday, November 24, 2013

Week in Review

Well, I may have lost all my viewers, but I did promise a new blog so I'd better step up. Of course, there is the issue that I don't actually have anything to blog about. So, I thought I'd give you the top 10 3 things on my mind this week (i'll stop at 3 because I seem to be going on and on). I doubt these are in any order. And they may not include the major work things on my mind, because those are extra boring!

1. Puppies!!! Regular and attentive readers of my blog will remember penny. She has visited a few times. Well, she went and got herself knocked up!  AND she's having puppies next week!  And I'm on the on call midwife if her mom is at work when she goes into labor. Ack. So Monday, if Penny has puppies, we're doing it together! (at least then I'll have a real topic for a blog).

pregnant penny
Penny as a puppy herself!
2. Back squats!  Every Monday at my gym we do back squats (usually 3 sets of 5 reps). And every monday we add 1k weight to the previous week's weight (that's 2.2 pounds). Unless, of course, one wasn't successful the previous week, and then you don't go up at all. And then at some point, after you've gone up and up and up and up and the weight gets so insanely heavy that you think you're going to die and you lose sleep sunday night because you're so worried about lifting on Monday AND, even more importantly, it gets heavy enough that your form goes to shit, after all that, you drop down to practice your form and start all over again. (Yes, I am sure that is a run on sentence, so sorry.) Anyhow, for the last, I don't know how long, I've been struggling with a hamstring injury. With this injury, I lost the ability to squat anything over 88K. Every time I'd try 89K (that's 195.8 pounds for those of you arithmatically challenged), my brain would explode!  I'd whine and moan and get extra miserable. There'd be lots of drama and at some point I'd drop the weight mid squat (ie drop on the floor because my brain would decide I couldn't possibly stand up).

So anyhow, this week I hit 89 again and, as you can imagine, I've been extra worried. BUT, it was easy!!!  I don't know how it happened. But it was very very exciting.

Of course, tomorrow is 90K.............

My guess is that is only slightly more than 89K

3. COLD!!  As in it got cold and I'm not ready to spent the next 3 months cold!  Some people don't seem to get cold. They live in super warm houses. Then walk quickly to their cars with spiffy heaters. Only to sit at a toasty desk. Etc etc. They wear light coats and look all cute stylie. But me, maybe I just spent too much time outside (bike rides to work, at the gym - which might as well be outside, walking the dog etc), but starting about now, I feel like i'm cold for the duration. Or, if I'm not cold all the time, then I'm on the verge. Or will be cold if I leave my kitchen (the warmest room in the house). (And yes people, I do turn the heat on in my house, it's on right now!)

And forget stylie. I'll spend 3 months looking like I woke up and layered 20 layers of sweat items on top of my sleep wear (hmmm, wonder why?).

And hats? Some people put on hat and look chic. I hate hats. And they hate me as well. Not to mention the hair issue they cause. (Probably another reason I'm cold - not a big scarf fan either.)

Or how about fingers and toes. I think my fingers and toes will be in pain every time I go outside between now and February! (and yes I do wear gloves and warm socks)

So, since it has gotten cold* this week, I have started dreading the rest of the winter. And it's been on my mind. A lot.

*disclaimer. I fully understand that on a relative basis it is not actually cold in Seattle at the moment, but whatever, it's what my body knows, so I say COLD!

This is me in my sleepwear + added layers. Sexy.

And one more note, I wanted to make a special call out to Jay, who made me realize I could change the battery in my car key without doing serious damage. It seemed like a big deal.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

We Must Rectify This Situation

OMG. Where have the blogs gone?  I have hit a serious dry spell. And it's so sad. I just went back and reviewed two blogs I wrote around thanksgiving time last year and they are SO FUNNY!! (Thanksgiving and Whiny injury blog). How is it that I am depriving the world of this entertainment? Shoot, how is it that I am depriving myself of this entertainment? Yes, work has taken over my life and my brain and left my incapable of focusing on anything else (or at least incapable of using my brain for anything else).  But that's lame and it's just stupid because work is just a tiny piece of life and should be kept in the sidelines as much as possible.  (Why is it that people in this country don't buy into that idea? Sure it's good and rewarding and all that to have a job, but it's not a life!)

Anyhoo, I will try to rectify the situation this weekend with a fascinating blog. If I can come up with a topic (I think that is the other issue, sometimes there isn't a damn thing to write about). But, I will do my best to keep us all entertained during these dreary winter months!

And I'll leave you with some Daisy cuteness, curled up in front of the heat register! It's her new home, on the floor in the kitchen.

And maybe I will also leave you with the fact that there is a very large, very slow flying fly in my house. And every minute or two it whips by my face. And if I go to another room, it whips by my face in that room. AND it won't land anywhere so I can't kill it. Buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz.......


And goodnight.

Sunday, November 3, 2013


I know it's a bit strange to be extra excited about sleeping until 5, but that was me this morning! Factoring in the demise of daylight saving time and the fact I went to bed at 9ish, that means I GOT OVER 8 HOURS OF SLEEP!  (BTW, I just learned it is saving time and not savings time, who knew and who gets it right??)

These last two weeks at work have been stupid. The project I'm working on went into overload and suddenly many people had many endless questions for me, each question more challenging to answer than the last. Each question requiring me to look in more places for the answer. Each question being extra confusing. AND, not only that, but it seems that the answer to each question needed to be found yesterday. All in all, this left me with endless brain swirl and detail juggle. Unfortunately, brain swirl and detail juggle doesn't just switch off when one goes to sleep - at least not for long. Even if I could switch off when I first went to sleep, it would switch back on sometime between 1 and 4 in the morning. And then I'd be awake.............swirling.

And then, of course, the next day as the questions continued, dealing with them on an exhausted brain became virtually impossible. By the end of the second week I was apologizing to people in meetings because my brain had stopped working.  I couldn't form sentences. Really, I could no longer care.

So, this weekend I canceled all my social plans. I have spent the weekend watching bad tv shows and romantic comedies and sitting on my ass.  I decided I was going to wear nothing but comfortable clothes and soft pants. I did a couple not very intense workouts. I took a restorative yoga class. I basically shut down.

And it's been awesome. Two nights now of normal/better than normal sleep and I almost feel like a new person!

I've got my fingers crossed for next week.

Some sleep cuteness to get you in sleep mode....

And, of course, my two favorite sleepers!!