January 27, 2010


Listen, I believe the children are our future and all that crap.

I do. I really do.

I say this, even though when I met Garrett I wasn't sure I wanted kids. And frankly I was pretty forward about that up front because:
1) I knew our relationship was serious and
2) Since I was 27 when we met and at that point I still didn't have that..."Yay! Babies!" kind of excitement up inside me I thought he deserved to know.

"You will want it someday when you realize what a great mom you will be..." he assured me. (Okay, seriously that is cute now that I think about it. He was only 24!)

"When you meet the right person you will want children..." My Mom said.  Sure Mom, whatever. 

And lo and behold, they were both totally right! (JERKS.) Four years later, although I am definitely not ready yet, I CAN'T WAIT until Garrett and I start a family. I can't think of anything cooler than having a baby with this man. Kids? Bring 'em on!


Can I digress just a minute and say, what the fuck is up with women having babies and then flushing their entire identities down the toilet? Man, this totally irks me.  And do you know what makes me so hyper-aware of this phenomenon?


I have so many girlfriends on Facebook who at one time were, you know, good friends -- meaning we had something in common, shared an interest, enjoyed each other's company, liked to discuss our opinions -- and now? They have distilled their personalities down to one liner status updates that only surround being a mom. And that's it. Nothing else.

Who they were before kids? Finito.
What they think about the tragedy in Haiti? Unimportant compared to their little baby-waby!
Whether Heidi Montag has gone off the deep end? Who's Heidi Montag? I'm too busy watching Backyardigans.

It's all about who their kids are, what their kids are doing, what their kids are thinking. And AY YAY YAY people, it makes me kind of  scared. If I went by Facebook, now that I have finally made the decision that I want to have a baby, my life is going to turn into Invasion of the Mommy Snatchers!

And oh my god, No!  I refuse to let this be my fate.

Now let me interject real quick before any of you start throwing tomatoes at me -- luckily, I know some very cool moms out there who are having kids and talking about it in a totally non-obnoxious way. And thank god! Because I don't know what I'd do if their weren't some inspiring role models out there who are loving the heck out of motherhood while hanging on to their own identity.

Also, I'm not asking for an all out Facebook Gag Order about the kidlets because frankly, if you are my friend, I probably like you and your kids, so even someone with a cold black heart like mine does still enjoy the occasional update.   I am smart enough to know that as a parent, having children becomes an incredibly significant part of your life, and one that you are (hopefully) excited to talk about and I dig that. I guess what I'm saying is, must it be the only thing to define you?  Because seriously,  YOU ARE FREAKING MY REPRODUCTIVE ORGANS THE EFF OUT!!!!!!

Please, please, please tell me that parenthood isn't doomed to be so one-dimensional dear readers-- because according to Facebook, I am doomed!

Who do you know that is living an inspiring life while still being a good mother -- please tell me, I'm dying to know.

January 26, 2010

Monday Evening Marvel

Usually after a full weekend of having fun and then a Monday back at work wading through the weeds I am not in the mood to cook dinner. Sometimes, if I am feeling exceptionally preparatory, I will try and put something together Sunday night that I can just reheat on Monday.

Enter: Pioneer Woman's Curried Carrot & Squash Soup.
(Please print this recipe immediately!)

This soup has become a great staple around here because it is so simple -- just a few ingredients, chop and drop prep -- but it is such a delight to come home to. Especially when you can throw together some homemade garlic croutouns while you re-heat your soup.  I don't know if it is life changing, but I can certainly vouch for its Monday Night changing qualities.  You must try it! 

Homemade Garlic Croutons

1 Skinny Baguette, sliced on the diagonal (for the aformentioned soup I love La Brea Bakery's Whole Grain Baguette)
Enough Olive Oil to brush the tops of one side (or if you are trying to lightent things up, Cooking Spray works too)
Sprinkle Garlic Powder with a heavy hand
Sprinkle Onion Powder lightly
Broil for 5 mins on each side and try not to eat them all before your soup is down!

January 24, 2010

Food Fighter

My Christmas gift to myself was a subscription to The New Yorker and although I absolutely love that magazine, I haven't actually gotten into the rhythm of reading something that comes every week seeing as it has been years since I've had such a regular subscription -- and if we are being totally honest it was US Weekly, and I think we can all agree the word to picture ratio in that particular magazine is probably exactly transposed in comparison. 

Anyway, the point is I am waaaaay behind on my reading, but this weekend I came across this article in the Jan 4th issue profiling Whole Foods CEO John Mackey and thought it was a really fascinating read.  I know it is kind of long but it is totally worth it!  I found all the Scandal! Drama! Spirituality! Veganism vs. Capitalism! far more interesting than I had initially thought.  Now granted, I am currently involved in a torrid love affair with Whole Foods, but I think it would be pretty entertaining to anyone who thinks about food and loves a good soap opera-esque human interest story.  

Hell, maybe The New Yorker and US Weekly aren't so different after all.  

January 20, 2010

Ground Control to Major Tom

What the hell is up with weather? 

I don't know what it is like in your neck of the woods but here in Sacramento it is storming like crazy.  Winds at 65 mph, rain -- and did I mention the wind?  Sweet Jeebus it's like Storm Central up in here and you know no one in California knows how to drive in the rain -- we don't know how to drive when it dips under 70 degrees, right? 

So the lights have been flickering on and off at work all day, and of course now that I am getting ready to leave the building there is just an absolute downpour happening. UGH.  The only reason I mention this (I know you don't come here for the weather report) is that I am using this time to not only wait out the storm so I can get home in one piece, but to come up with a good action plan for when I get home.  And I've come up with the following:

1.  Do not pass go (but still feel free to collect the $200)
2.  Do not go to the gym (hey, I went last night and it was just what the doctor ordering considering my mood)
3.  Cook something totally random that is neither gourmet nor healthy (but comforting and delicious!)
4.  Find down comforter immediately and position yourself optimally on the couch
5.  Read your book or watch something delightfully  trashy on the dvr for the rest of the evening

Call me crazy, but I think it's a pretty sound plan.

Speaking of trashy -- did you click on that link up there for Keeping up with the Kardashians?  Is Kourtney really pregnant and posing in a negligee on the website?  I mean, I'm all for feeling sexy when you're pregnant, but pregnant lingerie shoots for reality show marketing purposes just seems a bit...weird.  I dunno.  

Also, speaking of the book I'm reading-- I'm in a new online bookclub called Booklushes, because I'm such a book nerd and I'm NOT even ashamed.  Also it is full of some of my favorite people, so that helps too.  But seriously you should check it out, it's pretty fab, and the book I'm reading now is for the club  and I love it already.  You've got until the 15th of February to read it...you know you want to! 

January 19, 2010


Today I am crabby.

Not emotional. Not hormonal. Not bitchy.

Just crabby.

After such a lovely long weekend spent relaxing with family, lounging with Garrett, and dining with friends, I definitely woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning knowing that I had to go to work.

Then, I remembered I had to wear a suit to work.

Then I remembered I had to wear a suit to work more days this week than not.

Then I looked outside and it was pouring and windy and nasty and generally awful and have I mentioned that I have new bangs that have been interesting enough to wrangle in even the best weather?

Then I found out that my desk is moving at work. It is moving from the geographic equivalent of Maui to the geographic equivalent of a dungeon-like shanty on the hot streets of India in the Summertime.

Then I encountered some general work annoyingness of the non-bloggable variety. But trust me, it sucked.

Then my computer kind of shit the bed.

Then I ordered a sandwich in the work cafeteria that I thought would be the least offensive (I had a close quarters meeting after lunch) and walked back upstairs only to realize I was in possession of a tuna sandwich with HELLA extra onions.

Then I realized I’m wearing the World’s most unsexy knee high nylons that just will not stay put, becoming a loose fluffy puddle around my ankles every time I stand up.

And while we’re at it – can I just vent about all these magazines lately that I have been reading are full of recipes that claim to be "400 calorie dinners" or "Lo Cal Alternatives" or "Happily Healthful" or whatever shit their copywriters are churning out that include grilled steaks, and pot-pies and trays of cheesy lasagna and such. Are you serious?  I start to think.  Maybe there are some great tips in here.  Sold.  And then when I start to really read them it looks like all the normal ingredients I usually use for the regular non-400 calorie version, and I'm thinking -- this is going to be a pretty damn tasty lasagna that I'm baking and I'm not sure how it's going to be only 400 calories -- And then I notice that I am instructed to bake it in a pan that is half the size of a normal lasagna pan and the recipe tells me it serves LIKE 36 PORTIONS!

Bait and Switch, people! 

HEAR YE! HEAR YE MAGAZINE PEOPLE!  Do not sell me portion control when you claim to be selling me “updated, healthy recipes”  in pretty, oozy, pictures you assholes...I’m on to you!

Anyway, if you come too much closer I may snap my claws at you. I'm pretty certain it is time to crawl back in my shell.

January 15, 2010

Over It. But Also Not Sure I Was Ever Under It.

…aaaaaaaaaaand I’m back to thinking about redecorating again.

Redecorating, you say?

Didn’t you just move in last April? It hasn’t even been a year.  Are you really going to redecorate? 

And the answer to that question -- after a sly stink eye-- is Yes. But keep in mind I am also crazy. Also, I read too many design blogs. Note to self: whittle down the design porn.

(But how can you not be inspired by the color combo in this room? [No, I am not thinking about nurseries thankyouverymuch]  Also, I want these chairs immediately.  Ack!  So many ideas.)

Anyway, I feel justified because I’m not really RE-decorating because technically we never really finished the decorating process. We have no paint on the walls or anything, just furniture and stuff, so I say it’s fair game.

I guess what prompted the whole idea is that I am so sick of our sheets right now.  The last few nights I have woken up in a crazy toga-tangle of jersey bedding which annoys the hell out of me in the middle of the night. So we need new sheets.  STAT.  And if I buy new sheets -- as my rationale goes -- I get a new duvet cover, right? So I’m thinking about moving our old duvet to the guest bedroom, but then I’d have to move the master bedroom art to guest bedroom too, and then our walls would be bare so I would need to handle that.

New paint.

New sheets.

New comforter.

New art.

So now we’re back to redecorating.

Fickleness -- one of my less favorable qualities.

January 14, 2010

Feeling Driven...

This morning I caught a snippet of Talk of the Nation on NPR and they were talking to author Daniel Pink about his new book Drive.  The book is mainly Pink's research-based take about what motivates people and how these things can enlighten us about working smarter and living better.  His main criticism seemed to be about the "dangling carrot on a stick" motivator and how it only works in a surprisingly few situations, and he spent a lot of time talking about how companies would be far more efficient if instead of dangling carrots in front of their employees they gave them three things:  autonomy, mastery, and a sense of purpose.

Holy smokes, if that wasn't a breath of fresh air. 

I certainly related to these ideas in the context of workplace criticism but I'm definitely not waxing about that on this here blog (obvs), but I thought a lot of his advice could be applied to real life, and was especially relevant during this time of year.  (Those NPR programmers -- so smart!)  Most of us are filled to the brim with goals and ideas and projects -- you know those Things At Which We Want To Succeed.  Fervor is at an all time high right now since it's January after all and the ink has hardly dried on our lists of resolutions that lay out our grand plans for 2010, but how does one keep that alive throughout entire year? 

Many people I know (including myself, who are we kidding) are trying to lose weight this year -- a noble, if unoriginal resolution.  I know a lot of people who have come up with reward systems as motivators or mile-markers along the way -- if I lose X number of lbs, I can buy myself Y --  and it reminded me of this dangling carrot motivator that Pink was talking about.  I've done this before myself (especially with weight loss) and  full confession:  I find that it works okay for a bit, but frankly, if I want something bad enough I generally end up purchasing it for myself whether I meet my "goal" or not.  The entire conversation really made me think; maybe I have been doing this all wrong?

I'm still marinating on the concepts of autonomy, mastery, and sense of purpose and how all of those things could effectively lay the groundwork for reaching my weight loss goals, but I think his tenets have a lot to do with realizing three major things:  that I have a choice in the matter, I am ABSOLUTELY capable, and that there is a whole list of reasons why I am looking to improve this area of my life that are important to me, and I need to keep that list close during times of challenge.  It's sort of empowering when I wrap my brain around it in that way, rather than looking at it as temporary torture until I earn a hot pair of jeans or a new lipgloss, ya know?  It's had me thinking all afternoon, so I may just have to pick it up.  But not as a reward, of course!  Because when trying to lose weight, I think we can all agree that there is rarely a shortage of carrots.     

January 13, 2010

Ah, San Diego...

Yeah, it was pretty much just like that. 

It was a quick weekend.  It was a full weekend.  But man-oh-man, was it a good weekend.

It started off a little rocky though on Friday night.  We had both worked full days on gone straight to the airport so we were a little bit early for our flight.  We checked in with no delay and headed immediately to the bar because, well we were on vacation and what else were we going to do?   After an hour and half of unwinding we decided to make our way to the gate since it would probably be boarding soon only to find out that our flight?  IT WAS CANCELLED.


Luckily they were able to get all of us on the 9:00 flight, but needless to say this put us a bit behind schedule.  We finally got to our hotel -- which by the way I can not recommend highly enough (cute! conveniently located! clean! dog friendly!) -- and crapped out immediately.  The following morning we were due at a 9am wedding, so we needed to get some serious beauty rest after our travel ordeal!

The wedding was and intimate ceremony in Balboa Park (which, WOW!) and then the reception was at an awesome local brewing company.  And I'm starting to think you just can't go wrong with that.  Love, Holy Matrimony, Beer Garden -- it's really quite the wedding trifecta, in my opinion.  After the wedding we headed back to the hotel to relax before going out for a bite to eat, and if you don't think this looks like a damn good start to a Saturday night, well then I don't even know you AT ALL:

So after dinner we met up with my cousin Jenny at a bar for drinks, because really, what's a vacation without some excessive imbibing? And then somehow we ended up at a random club...let me rephrase...at DA CLUB but ohmygod it was so fun and we danced like absolute fools.  Garrett and I stayed only a short time though, because I was wearing an acrylic sweater.  Yes, a sweater, and have you ever tried to dance in a club in a long sleeved acrylic sweater?  Well let me assure you, you would also not hang out for long -- it was HOT!  And not in a cute way.  So we started to head back to the hotel but got distracted by another fun looking bar, so we said what the heck! And got a drink and of course our groove on once again, which says alot for the evening, since Garrett usually hates to dance.  I will let you do the mental math about how much beer we had enjoyed to make dancing sound like the best idea ever, but I will give you a hint.  It involved the following variables:

So when we had had enough of dancing to songs that we enjoyed but most of the bar seemed too young to recognize (Hello, Bust-a-move? C'mon, really, youngins?) it was about 2am, so the next logical step was obviously to head to a hot dog shop, right?  Right.  Glad we are on the same page about that.  And in case you are wondering, it was pretty much the best hot dog ever in the moment.  

Sunday we headed out to Vista for a BBQ with all of Garrett's family who were in town and it was such a good time to just enjoy the amazing weather out in his aunt and uncle's backyard (hello, it's January! And in Sacramento?  It feels like January) and chat the afternoon away.  We couldn't have asked for a better day and when we got home Sunday night we were beat! 

Monday was the day we checked out and headed home, but  more importantly it was also the day we had breakfast at Brians24.  And god knows the the weight of the world was on my shoulders about that!.  The Monte Cristo?  Well, it was just okay.  I can't say it is the answer to the sweet/salty conundrum, but it hit the spot all the same.  Afterwards we made sure to enjoy every last drop of the San Diego sunshine by heading over to Coronado, making our way up to La Jolla, and finishing our day with pretty much the the best bacon burger on the planet (New Year's Resolutions...whaaaaaat?)  or at least in Ocean Beach.  Then it was time to make our way to the airport and back to Sacramento. 

After a day frolicking on the beach in the 78 degree sun, it was a bit of a rude awakening to have to go to work in the pouring rain on Tuesday morning.  But hey, you take the good with the bad, and this trip was definitely a refreshing dose of goodness!  Family, friends, great conversations, a wedding, too much good food, the ocean, sunshine on your back...I really couldn't have asked for a better beginning to 2010!

I can't wait to do it again!

You can find the rest of our photos here.

January 08, 2010

Counting on The Monte Cristo

So I mentioned in my last post that we made breakfast reservations here during our trip to San Diego.  Part of me thought to myself, "Uh...Reservations? For Breakfast? PSHAW!" But in the end I caved to the pretentiousness because, as you may or may not know, breakfast is my absolute favorite meal when it comes to dining out.  No contest. Sure I love lunching with the best of 'em, and I never mind not having to cook dinner, but there is just something so decadent about rolling out of bed and having someone else take care of your first meal of the day while you lounge sleepily over coffee.  So that being said, you would think I would be excited about this super fun breakfast outing -- and I mean I am, don't get me wrong -- but each time I go out for breakfast I get hand-wringing anxiety over one major conundrum:  Do I order Savory or Sweet? 

I know.  I'm lame.  

You see, I really do not have a sweet tooth.  Of course I have my favorite sweet things, I'm not saying I never indulge, but 9 times out of 10 if you offered me a bag of potato chips or the World's Most Beautifully Hand Crafted Dessert, I'd shamelessly snatch that bag right out of your hands and go running, leaving the sweet stuff behind in the dust.  Call it a salt tooth, call it a character flaw, call it whatever you want, but when I have a craving it is fiercely for salty carbo-liciousness and the dessert decadence can more or less take a hike.  Reason # 917 why the South Beach Diet?  Is not even a feasible reality in my world (See also:  #918:  Laziness and #919:  Rage Towards Anyone Telling Me What To Eat).  The problem is, for some unknown reason every time I open a breakfast menu and see French Toast!  Strawberry pancakes!  Berries and Cream!  and immediately turn into a kid in a candy store:


But I am never satisfied with a sweet breakfast.  Ever.  The only small exception to that rule is when Garrett and I go to Tower Cafe -- and then we must split an order of their French Toast because it is a thing of wonder, people.  But even then, I still have to order my own breakfast and in lieu of toast split the order of one slice of the French Toast because seriously, there is no more awful feeling than ordering some variation on nutella stuffed french toast or pancakes dripping in some fruit compote concoction and having it arrive delicately on the plate right next to Garrett's plate of eggs, bacon, hashbrowns, sourdough toast with just a hint of salted butter, and SOMEONE BRING ME A SALT LICK BECAUSE THIS SWEET ASS SHIT JUST AIN'T GONNA CUT IT.  HULK IS HANGRY!

Who ordered this sweet breakfast?This is bullshit.

It just kind of ruins the relaxing vibe of lounging over coffee, ya know? 

(You think I'm kidding, but ask Garrett, he has been there.  And although he lived to tell about it, it was only barely.)

So one would think, Holly, you know yourself.  You are never happy with sweet breakfasts, so the simple answer is just don't order them.  But people, the siren song of sugary breakfast in the morning is a hard one to resist.  I don't know why, probably because I don't ever have nutella, or boysenberry syrup, or ollaliberry bread pudding with cinnamon cream sauce on top at home EVER, so part of me feels like this may be my only chance!  It could also be the years of torture I endured as a child (ha!) when my parents made me eat Grape Nuts and (if I was lucky) Kix when all I really wanted was Count Chocula and Trix and all the other normal cereals my friends' parents let them eat. 

But all that is neither here nor there, because I think I may have found the solution:  The Monte Cristo Sandwich.  In short, it is a melty ham, turkey, and cheese sandwich served between two pieces of french toast style bread.  Sweet and Savory.  I told this to Garrett and he kind of crinkled his nose, and I agree, it sounds a bit untraditional -- but hell, the sandwich has been around for ages and lots of people love it so it can't be awful, can it??  I am crossing my fingers that this will solve my problem and I will never have to hand-wring again, but just in case I made sure to pack an outfit that will look cute on the off chance I start to turn green.         

January 07, 2010

I Love A Good Weekender

On Friday night Garrett and I are officially San Diego bound.  It is our first weekender of 2010 and I'm pretty darn excited about it.  Our official reason is to head down for a Saturday morning wedding (interesting, right? I've never been to a morning wedding, I'm intrigued)  but we extended our stay a bit so that we could have some time to just wander around another city and enjoy each other's company and I really can't wait! 

I've written here numerous times about my unquenchable wanderlust, and I'm looking forward with great anticipation to another year of weekend adventures.  I'm kind of weird in my travel preferences -- I've only been out of the country once, and I'm totally okay with that.  I don't really have a pressing urge to "backpack through Europe" or visit "exotic locales" or whatever (I mean, if someone wanted to treat me to a trip through the Mediterranean I'd be hard pressed to say no) but I guess I just feel so lucky living here in such a diverse place (California, The West Coast, The United States) where it is so convenient to get away.  My travel desires are pretty simple -- Let's go somewhere fun, somewhere different (or of course somewhere the same that we love in San Diego's case), and preferably to a somewhere that we can enjoy over a long weekend.  I mean I'm all for 2 week long trips to Maui (sigh) but to me, the perfect weekend away is just so easily obtainable, that my pursuit of it is almost gluttonous. 

San Diego is a special place for us (I lived there a bit when I was small and my dad was playing for the (Super!) Chargers and my cousin is currently living there, and a good portion of Garrett's family lives down there) and every time we visit we discover something new.  Miles of beautiful coastline, big city-eats, and well, then of course there is this:

I'll take 76 degrees in the middle of winter for $1000, Alex!
(um...parts of my company today are closing today due to snowstorms...)

Needless to say I am giddy and excited and looking forward to a little adventure.  We are thinking of having breakfast here but wish us luck because apparently you need reservations???  Anyway, it should be a good time.  I'm looking forward to seeing the ocean, taking some pictures, and spending some relaxing down time with my love. 

Hope you all have lovely weekends wherever you are and whatever you do!

January 05, 2010

Retail Resolutions

So along with some of the goals I have set out to accomplish this year, I also made a list of some more fun things such as -- Big Ticket Items I Want To Buy This Year (which to me constitutes things that are over $200 dollars).  This list was very fun to make and pretty much flowed right onto the paper as soon as I picked up the pen.  Shocker, I know.  But I tried to be reasonable and make a list that makes sense but I also threw in a nice-to-have or two.  So I thought I'd share, since this is much more exciting than some of my other 2010 resolutions.

Big Ticket Items I Want To Buy
  • A Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer - I shouldn't have to convince you why I want this, but what has been holding me back is in what color?  It's a pricey purchase, and one I anticipate having for a long time so I want to make sure I get just the right one.  Frankly, I want this one but it is only sold at Macys and it doesn't really go with our kitchen at the moment -- but seriously, nothing goes with our kitchen -- it needs updating and come on we have a Harvest Gold Appliances people, nothing is going to really "go".  But someday we will update our kitchen, and that mixer will go beautifully in my dream kitchen, I'm sure of it.  Right now, at least.  But what if I change my mind?  The practical part of my brain tells me to go with the Silver one from Costco.  It's cheaper, and possibly less "bold" down the road.  Also I have gift cards for Costco so there's that.  But Robin's Egg Blue???  Want. Want. Want.  And besides if I listened to my rational brain more often, I never would have spent $400 on a pair of hot pink sunglasses 5 years ago.  People thought I was nuts but to this day those are still one of my favorite purchases, so there is something to be said for a little whimsy every once in a while.  Anyway this year, I will decide if it kills me because I need that mixer in my kitchen.

  • A Digital SLR -- This is another one of those "It's about time" purchases.  It's time I graduate from my playskool camera, you know?  I know it's the cliche item to purchase when you have kids, but I'm getting to the point where, even though I don't have rugrats, my point and shoot is frustrating me with its limitations.  I'm a control freak, and it should come as no surprise that I want to plop down $600 (plus new lenses!) to have more control over my pictures.  But ohmygod, even though I have been doing entry level research for about a year so and don't feel quite so overwhelmed anymore, because it's such a crazy purchase I want to get the exact right one, you know? Mike,  you know I'm going to come barking up your tree when I get this all figured out, right?

  • A Vitamix -- DUUUUUDE --  it blends, it makes juice, it makes soup (that is actually hot!), it makes ice cream -- it's like a frumdrillion appliances in one.  And I want it.  And I've wanted it for a while, but this purchase is the definition of nice-to-have and not need-to-have.   Plus it's huge and our kitchen storage is limited, but I think I'm going to make it happen this year anyway because I'm stubborn like that, and having kale in my smoothies excites me, okay?   

  • A Car -- Ha!  That sounds so simple doesn't it?  Just go out and buy a car.  BAHAHAHAHAHA.  I've been car shopping for two and half years, if you can believe that, and still, no new car.  Why is that, you ask?  Well it's a fun little story.  A giant, irresponsible ass-clown hit my very cute and very-almost-paid-for Honda Civic almost three years ago and obviously I was (and still am a bit) pissed.  Note to self:  Let it go.  But seriously, A paid for car!  Oh, the excitement!  And I loved that car, it had low mileage, and it got me everywhere I wanted to go.  Luckily (and this is some crazy fate, people) the month before my car was totaled, Garrett's grandma had given him her 1991 Toyota Cressida...with 50,000 miles on it.  I want you to wrap your brain around an almost 20 year old car with 50,000 miles on it.  Grandmas, man.  Gotta love it!  So I started driving that car since Garrett already had a car he LOOOOOVED (which ohmyheck is a story for another day - men and their cars -- even when they are 10 years old! Sheesh!) so it all worked out just fine.  And I'm still driving it to this day, and honestly, I kind of love it.  I mean it has features that my old civic didn't have (leather seats, sunroof,  my iPod plugs in just fine) but it is also a little bit of a labor of love.  Funny things happen to old cars that end up being millions of dollars at a moments notice, right?  And although I would like to be driving something a little more glamorous, the fact that it is free sort of makes up for all of that but the bigger issue is the convenience factor of having a car that has problems.  And that is something Garrett and I are ready NOT to have anymore (in at least one car)  So I need to get something.  But what?  I want something with good gas mileage, that is eco-friendly, and has lots of cargo room -- but I'm not dying for an SUV.  I love a small car.  I was leaning towards the Honda Fit for a while, but they are pricey for what you get, and I could get something used that is a lot bigger for the same amount of money.  Oh, the decisions (and the money, OMG!)  So this is another purchase I'm going to tackle this year.  Cross your fingers for me.  

So, tell me, what's on your wishlist?   

January 04, 2010

Bring it!

Well hello there, it's been ages, hasn't it?

I spent the last two weeks of the year taking a good old break from everyday life and of course the constant demands of the internet -- I didn't blog, I rarely updated twitter or facebook, and I hardly spent more than 10 minutes at a time on my computer.  And you know what?  I lived to tell about it!  Sometimes I feel pressured to keep up with all the updates, blogging, tweeting, status updating, ohmygosh what is going on out on the interwebz -- but then I realize that everyone needs a little break some times and that's okay -- and those of you who still hang around when I'm not constantly connected are true gems!

I had a wonderful, relaxing holiday, why thank you for asking!  I took vacation a few days before Christmas and spent a few days making homemade tamales with my mom, aunt, and grandma.  Plenty of laughs were shared, stories told, and of course the end result was a fabulously successful Christmas dinner, which is always nice.  I spent the day before Christmas preparing some holiday dishes that included a few breakfast casseroles, some cocktails, and a refreshing berry cobbler that we ate smothered in vanilla ice cream on Christmas night that was just right after a long day of indulging!

New Year was also relaxing and kind of a laugh.  We headed out of town up to Chico for a "night out" with my cousin Jim and his girlfriend Gina, only to eschew the actual going out part at about 10pm on New Year's Eve in favor of putting on our comfy clothes, finishing eating all of our fabulous appetizers, and watching Ryan Seacrest ring in the new year while doing a puzzle (hi -- we're old! But damn we had fun!)  Alot of times I feel so much pressure to do something super extreme to mark the passing of time, and you know what?  This year, sitting around a coffee table with silly music on in the background, reliable shows on the tv, and GREAT conversation everywhere, I had one of the most memorable nights that I have had in a while.  It was nice to spend time alone with Jim and Gina to catch up on life, talk about the best parts of 2009 and discuss our wishes for 2010 -- which were remarkably similar!  There is just something special about good food, a bit of a champagne haze, and honest conversation that beats a fancy dinner and drinks at a bar every time. 

Today I am happy to be getting back to life and back to routine.  I'm happy to be getting back to blogging.  I'm excited that there is a whole new year out in front of me that I can spend accomplishing things.  I'm excited to be moving forward after a few weeks of just sitting still. I came up with a bajillion goals and plans and dreams and can't wait to start working on them (6 pages, if you must know, feel free to call me psycho!)  I am 100% a resolution type of girl, even though I know the hip thing is to say they are dumb.  I can't turn it off -- I've always been a goal setter.  I was raised by a professional athlete, people, goals and discipline were a part of my life even before I ever really embraced it.  Now as an adult I love having that knowing deep inside (from a lifetime worth of empirical testing) that if I set a goal and make a plan, it WILL get done. So the beginning of the year is a clean slate!  It's empowering and I always feel excited with potential -- I'm flexible too, though.  I know sometimes things don't get done, so for me I feel excited to look at those goals that did not get met last year and either make a better plan for it, or put it down to the bottom of the priority list and be okay with that. 

This year I feel exceptionally excited, I think, because last year I did not make any hard and fast goals in January.  2008 was a very accomplished year for me and I remember starting 2009 feeling really -- well, exhausted.  My only goal at the beginning of the year was to settle down and settle in really.  I just wanted to get back to being nicer to myself, relaxing a bit, and pondering.  Of course I made other goals throughout the year, but the overlying agenda was just the chill the heck out.  And  I think in those ways 2009 was a big success!  But it also left me a bit thirsty for structure, you know?   So now I am rested and refreshed and ready to take on everything I want for myself. 

2010 -- I'm ready for you to bring it! 


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