Sunday, March 30, 2008
Well folks, I have found a product that makes me totally ok with cooking veggies. Glad Steaming bags are all that they say - easy, clean, and perfectly steam veggies in a matter of minutes in the microwave.
I know, I know. I could just use the veggie steamer and the stove. But then I have dishes to clean and the distinct possibility of overcooking. (Not that DH would mind. He's English and loves everything burnt a/o overcooked to the point of mush. See why we're the perfect couple?)
All you do is wash fresh veggies, pop them in the handy stand-up ziploc bag, seal it, and toss it in the microwave for the time printed on the bag. Pull it out and voila! Perfect veggies, every time.
I take my lunch to work every day and I know that bags of veggies will now be coming with me. Give it a try - I got a box of 10 for $2 at Target.
PS - I tried Broccoflower (lime green cross between broccoli and cauliflower) from Trader Joe's and it was *awesome* steamed with salt, pepper, and half a lemon. Give it a go!
Saturday, March 29, 2008
The J.Crew outlet was *full* of cute stuff. I had a hard time sticking to "basics." No embroidered capris. No plaid shorts. No ribbon belts. No headbands. I needed some dress pants so I was super excited to find these:
- Brown plaid pants
- Brown houndstooth cuffed pants
- Black plaid cuffed pants (SO Christmas-y and I TPH them)
The Bed Bath and Beyond outlet was excellent. Way beyond my expectations, actually. It definitely had a lot of their triple chocolate banana creme pie strawberry shortcake scented nonsense but I got some good stuff. Large bottles of my C.O. Bigelow Rosemary Mint body wash were $2. $2! I normally pay $13. Into the cart they went. :)
We also stopped by the Veronica Mars props sale at the movie studio down the road from my work. I picked up a framed picture that hangs in Veronica's bedroom. It's not really my taste (very California-y) but the picture is a b/w of an old gate and I really like that. So yay! I own something from VM!
Anywho, I felt very cute yesterday and thought I would share.
- BR medium wash jeans, long length (thank you Jesus for "tall" jeans)
- Brown and pink argyle short sleeve sweater from Target (super duper cute - I'm going back to pick up a couple different colors!)
- Brown Gap belt (best inexpensive belts I've found)
- Pink suede Coach mules (the rubber sole is the "C" print. A little tacky but it amuses me.)
- Brown and cream Kate Spade bag
- Pearl studs, Tiffany "E" necklace, engagement and wedding rings.
So yeah, I felt like I fit in quite well yesterday. I wasn't in the Docker herd but I wasn't busting out my stiletto boots and blazer combo from last week either. (That was a little too dressed up for casual Friday, apparently. People kept asking if I was going somewhere.)
Friday, March 28, 2008
It is with great sadness that I announce something that I have had a feeling about for some time. I'm allergic to avocado. Sigh.
I've never like guacamole so avocados haven't really been in my diet. But San Diego is apparently one of the best places in the world to grow avocados so they are in EVERYTHING. I've been getting stomach aches after every Mexican meal and thought it might be the avocados. Last night definitely confirmed it.
I was very excited to try Ladybug's Picnic's kale and avocado salad last night. About a half hour later it felt like I had major stomach pain. Rolling around on the floor, groaning, horrible pain.
I consulted l'internet and it turns out people with my allergies tend to be allergic to avocados. I totally pinpointed my pain when someone described it as "a stomach of ground glass." Yeap, that's me.
So yeah, no more delicious, good for you, avocados. I'll have to stick with the salsa.
So if you can't guess from the lyrics above, I'm a huuuge Veronica Mars fan. (Don't judge - just rent the first disc and I dare you tell me you don't love it.) For those who don't know (which would be most people since the show has been canceled), Veronica is a private investigator/high schooler/Nancy Drew type at a California high school. It was one of the cleverest sitcoms I've ever seen. (And I've seen a lot since I'm a tv junkie.)
Anywho...I found out today that the studio where they filmed the show is down the street from my office! And they're having a garage sale this weekend selling props from the show! *SQUEEEE!!!*
So yeah, that's where I'll be tomorrow. :)
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Background: DH was really really really into outdoorsy stuff for years. Kayaking all weekend, rock climbing every night, dude was cuuuuut. However, his job and the years going by have cut down on his outdoorsy stuff. He hates the gym so he hasn't been working out much.
About three years ago I got serious with a trainer and lost about 20lbs and put on a *ton* of muscle. Since then I've stayed the same weight but lost almost all my muscle definition. I'm determined to get it back. (I'm actually quite strong for a girl but you wouldn't know it from my pleasant plumpness.)
So anywho, DH and I determined that moving to Cali would be our "start-over." Instead of happy hour, we hit the gym. I'm going to start the C25K program again once I get some strength back in my legs. (I've done it before and while I don't enjoy running, it's a very good program and gets me moving.)
The first time we worked out together, I think DH thought he needed to watch me on the weights. I'm pretty sure he was surprised that my form was so good. I mean, hello, I worked out with a trainer 3x a week for a Loooong time - of course I know how to lift properly! :)
We've also been eating better and I've been trying to diversify our meals. We tend to get into a rut and I'm trying to make different and better salads. I've also started going to the grocery every night. It's so much better to pick up something that looks good rather than throw together a bunch of stuff out of a box.
Anyone have tasty salad ideas?
Sunday, March 23, 2008
Saturday, March 22, 2008
When we were camped out before we moved in, we looked directly into the sign for the El Cortez.
This old guy needs to moisturize.
Sorry, El. DH made me take this photo!
A very cute bearded bornean boar.
I love flamingoes. They're just so odd looking.
Balboa Park is full of really intricately decorated buildings. It's not my taste but I appreciate the workmanship.
Friday, March 21, 2008
And that, my friends, is how to inspire customer loyalty.
Thursday, March 20, 2008
I really like the set up. It's great to have the room to hang up glasses while still housing the *massive* bottles of liquor we picked up at Costco. Yeah - I admit that I really like California's liquor laws. You can buy alcohol pretty much anywhere - even Target!
(As a graduate of a school in Tennessee, JD is a permanent visitor to our house and bar.)
On the top of the hutch is a Kate Spade vase - a wedding gift from my college roommate's mother. I was really touched that she sent it. :) The Tiffany bottle opener was from our friends J and L. They know how much I looove the little blue box. And the silverware chest is from my aunt and uncle and houses my Grandmother's silver.
My Grandmother actually had two sets of silver but my Grandfather would only use the second set.
Here's the scoop: Apparently my Grandmother was quite the catch and she had a beau that was in lurrrve but wasn't quite ready to get hitched. Well, my Grandfather was and my Grandmother accepted his proposal.
Spurned beau then went and bought all of the silver off of my Grandmother's registry and had it engraved with her maiden name initials. A sort of gentlemanly b1tch-slap to my Grandfather and their engagement.
Because it was an obscenely expensive gift (he even bought the olive spoons and fish knives!) and it was engraved, my grandmother couldn't return it. Another pattern, with the correct initials, was bought and my Grandfather refused to use the first set.
DH and I think this is hil-arious and when my mother offered us a set of silver, we knew which pattern we definitely had to have!
J.Crew, $32. I've been lusting after this bling-bling bag for two seasons. Now that it's pretty much at the bottom of the J.Crew clearance and they've thrown the extra 20% off, you need to snatch it up.
Old Navy, $14. Ok, I admit this doesn't look like much online. But in person it's really very cute, mostly due to its oversized handle.
Old Navy, $13. I FPH (freaking puffy heart) this SO much. Yes my pretty, you are coming home with me. And if I don't like you in a season, I won't feel bad for donating you to Goodwill.
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Poor DH has to have the small closet. Most of the space is used for storage, so he's even more screwed. Sorry, honey!
I was bummed out two days ago. I was alone, the house was a mess, and it was too late to call anyone on the East coast. I hit Marshalls and got two super cute dresses.
Black Calvin Klein. It desperately needs a pressing because the pleats are adorable in a June Cleaver sort of way.
Normally I would not go near something in yellow but I'm trying to get out of my dark color groove. This shift is *SO FREAKING CUTE* in a Mary Quaint-way. It has pockets. Pockets! I can't wait to wear it to work with my cute round toe heels and a little cardi.
I blogged about this dress a while ago. I love this cut and fabric and already have it in two other colors. It's floaty and fitted and fabulous.
I also blogged about how I almost bought this at the J.Crew outlet. Well, I'm SO glad I bought it from the website. The fabric and lining are much nicer and they did a bias-cut trim at the bust line that was not on the one in the outlet. We seriously need to host a bbq so I can wear this, STAT.
DH took me out on Friday and said that he knew where we should get dinner. I was totally cranky until he pulled me in to the Coach store and asked for the green bag. Well, they only had the floor model which had a HUGE scratch down the front. No, Ms. Saleslady, I DO NOT want that bag. Can you call in an order? Oh, the bag's sold out? Are you sure? No, I don't want the floor model. Here's my name and number, call me if you find a NEW one.
I was totally bummed and DH felt bad that he made me wait so long to buy it. He didn't realize that if they sell out, they sell out. He just assumed they'd make more. *chuckle* Anywho...we were at Bloomindales on Saturday and we nipped in. We asked if they had the green bag. No, not the geranium one, the green one. They had three! So yay, I had my beautiful bag and just in time for St. Patrick's Day!
DH has been on a business trip (yes, already), so I've been put in charge of unpacking, sorting, putting away, rearranging, etc. It has been quite a pain in the buttocks, but it's starting to look decent in here. Nevermind that the dining room table is currently on the balcony (we don't have room for it in the living room). If I can switch out all our heavy sweaters out of the drawers, and iron about 8000 shirts, I'll be done with the bedrooms. Yay!
I'm really looking forward to Easter. I gave up meat for Lent (one of the few church-y things I still do) and I'm tired of beans and tofu. I wonder whether I should try church here. I used to be a *really* religious person. I went to church three times a week when I was in high school, and all my friends were in my youth group. But I started to feel bad about a lot of things (Episcopalian guilt) in college so I stopped going except on big holidays. Now that I'm married to DH, we hardly ever go. He's not a church-type dude. In fact, he's not even "spiritual" like I am. (I say spiritual because I believe I have a good relationship with God. We talk every night and I think it's important to thank him for all the things that happen to me. I just don't do the church thing.) DH said that if I wanted to start going, he'd be cool with that. I kinda miss the whole thing.
On a shopping note, I found the super cute Targer anchor shorts that Go Red Go blogged about a while back. On super clearance for five bucks, people, in my size, and the only pair left. Yay!
Sunday, March 16, 2008
PS He bought me the Kelly green Coach bag I've been eyeing for months. I love that he knows how much I love handbags. What a hubby. :)
Saturday, March 15, 2008
I decided something needed to be done. I used up my 409 and Chlorox and started buying vinegar and baking soda in huge containers at Costco. Baking soda, if you don't know, is a non abrasive cleaner that gets really really hard to clean stuff sparkling. I even used it on our cooktop and got out some stains that I thought were a lost cause.
DH, being a chemist, wasn't too happy with my new found cleaning products.
"What do you mean you're using baking soda?"
"I'm afraid of all the nasty chemicals in the old stuff."
"There's a reason they sell those 'nasty chemicals.' The nasty chemicals work!"
Anywho, with the move I had to get rid of all of our open cleaning products. (No cross-country shipping, no sir.) I was reading Fast Company and they had an article about the guys at Method. They are commited to ecologically-sound cleaning products and being socially responsible. Their ideas about the environment and design seemed cool and I totally agreed with their "humanifesto."
Well, when I went to Target to stock up the condo, I stocked up on Method products. I totally BPH (big puffy heart) the smell of the pink grapefruit so I loved the dish soap, all purpose spray and wipes.
I really like the design of the bottles for the hand wash. I think I read that Karim Rashad was the designer (you know, the guy who made the Dustbuster cool). Whatever...the stuff cleans well and my hands are still soft. Rock on.
The Fast Company article talked about the Omop and how the Method dudes made the Swiffer-like pads biodegradable. I'm ashamed to say that I was a complete Swiffer convert when they first came out. I didn't think about their environmental impact at all. Well, I spied the cute Omop kit and immediately bought one. (A girl needs a mop for the kitchen, no?) Well, in addition to the mop, the floor cleaner, and a mop pad, it was supposed to come with the Swiffer-like biodegradable pads. Did my kit have any? No. What's up with that, Method dudes? I'll have to pick up a box on my next Target run.
I was really excited to see that Method has moved over into toilet cleaning products. Cleaning the bathroom is my least favourite chore but the peppy scents will hopefully make it less painful. I bought the following:
- Ylang-ylang shower spray (smells sooo good and will hopefully banish soap scum)
- Tub and tile spray (I could use the grapefruit general spray but I liked how this smelled)
- Lil' Bowl Blu (afore mentioned toilet will be sparkly and smell good!)
- Le Scrub (you had me at "safe for stainless steel")
- Granite and marble cleaner wipes (Perfect for quick wipes of the kitchen before bed)
- Stainless steel cleaner (again, could use other products but it smells ah-mazing)
Having spent a scary amount of money at Target, I have since found out that the HSN has a $20 deal:
Method 8-piece Detox Your Home Cleaning Kit Includes:
25 fl. oz. bottle of liquid dish soap
28 fl. oz. spray bottle of glass cleaner
28 fl. oz. spray bottle of all purpose cleaner
30-count container of biodegradable cleaning wipes
(2) 12 fl. oz. hand wash
Washable microfiber cloth
Detox tote bag - measures approx. 15"L x 15"W x 25"H
This is a fantastic deal and I plan on picking it up when I start to run low on products. I suggest you do the same!
The movers came over on Thursday and unpacked everything (that's why we have stuff just sitting everywhere). We were lucky that all we lost was a potted plant and (unfortunately) my favorite floor lamp. Our car, however, did not do as well on its way across the country.
To sum up the catastrophe that is my car: totally screwed. The shippers drove it across the country, for two weeks, WITH THE WINDOW DOWN. It went through a blizzard WITH THE WINDOW DOWN. So not only is it completely disgusting with grit, sand, and salt inside, we're worried about how the electronic are going to fare and if we're going to get mildew in the carpet. Oh, oh, and they used a dirty cloth to polish it in California so the entire outside is covered in minute scratches. ARGH! DH got really pissed off and talked to the shippers and they're going to pay for a detail in and out. We also have the right to claim again if the electronics break. So, anywho, big pain in the butt.
DH is flying out to the East Coast tomorrow. I knew his new job would require travel, I just didn't realize it would happen so soon. My goal is to have the condo put away by the time he gets back. Eep!
My first day of work was interesting. I've got the same job title but I'm doing something COMPLETELY different so I feel a bit out of my league. I'm sure it'll be fine but the sense of "Oh, my God, what did I get myself into?" is very present.
I wanted to feel comfortable my first day so I wore the following Target Mizrahi seersucker suit with a blue silk BR blouse and navy suede loafers. (Word on Target seersucker: it's fully lined and really nice for the amount of money you pay. I mean, it's not Brooks Brothers but it's really light and comfortable.)
DH made fun of how preppy I went on my first day. I felt vindicated when the first thing someone said to me, as I was making my way up the elevator, was "Great suit!" Ha!
Monday, March 10, 2008
- I have the head cold from heck. I don't feel bad enough to call in sick tomorrow (my first day at the new office) but I need a big box of tissues at all times.
- I have somehow developed poison ivy all up my calf. The only thing I can think of is that some oil got on my foot through my flip flop and then marched its way, Sherman style, up my leg.
- The chambermaids at the Sheraton Suites (where we're camped out until our stuff arrives on Thursday) are really really good. Like, leaving us four notepads because we've been going through them like wildfire. They also put up with my trashcans full of dirty tissues. They will be tipped well.
- The idiot auto shippers left the passenger side window slightly open during our car's cross-country shipment. Not a big deal, you would think. But when your car GOES THROUGH A BLIZZARD, and all that snow, sleet, road grit, and street salt ends up covering the entire passenger side interior (front and back), it is a big deal. Having to file a claim is going to be a pain in the ass but I'm getting that car detailed nose to tail and they're going to pay for it.
- The weather in San Diego is ridiculously gorgeous. I'm wearing a t-shirt and my new madras patchwork bermudas (SO cute), and I'm warm and happy.
- I walked by a Hallmark that was going out of business and everything was 75% off. I walked out of there with enough cocktail napkins, cards, and gift bags for the next year. I like that a lot of it was Hallmark's Red campaign for AIDS in Africa (similar to the campaign at GAP). I may be only paying a buck a roll, but it's going to a good cause!
Sunday, March 9, 2008
Friday, March 7, 2008
What is your beauty routine? Dermalogica special cleansing gel, Dermalogica daily scrub powder, Boots No. 7 Protect and Perfect Beauty serum, Neutrogena healthy Defense moisturizer, followed by Dermalogica SPF 30.
What was the last item of clothing you bought? Madras bermudas at Target
Do you use a dresser, closet, or both? Both, and a second dresser and an armoir (sp?). We DO NOT have enough closet space.
What type of earrings are in your ears right now? None.
What type of figure do you have? Big boobs, straight waist and a flat booty.
Do you wear glasses? Yes, black and brown Chanel frames.
What type of handbag do you carry? My work bag is a brown Kate Spade. My going out bags are Kates, Coach, and Banana.
What is your ideal style? Preppy classic with updates.
What jewelry are you wearing right now? None this early in the morning.
Do you wear knee-hi stockings? Nope. Ew.
Do you have to wear matching lingerie? Not on a daily basis. I do it when I need an ego boost or more confidence before a meeting. Is that weird?
Do you wear makeup? Sometimes. I've totally slacked about wearing makeup to work but with the new job I want to look more pulled together.
Do you wear nightgowns? Cute little ones, yes. Big ol' granny flannels, no.
What outerwear do you put on when going out on a typical winter's day? Black princess coat from J.Crew, J.Crew shearling gloves, my plaid scarf from Scotland, and my earmuffs (J.Crew).
What is your favorite perfume? Philosophy, by Philosophy. It's really zesty and lemon-y.
Is your motto "quality over quantity"? I'm really trying to get that way. I have a problem always needing "one more sweater!"
Do you wear rain boots? Nope.
Do you wear socks or slippers when your feet get cold? I heart slippers. Currently I'm in a set of shearling mocs. I also have a gold pair of shearling slippers from Coach, and a pair that look like Sigmund Freud (my "Freudian" slippers).
Do you have a set of travel luggage? Yes, a set of burnt orange Samsonite. It looks a lot nicer than it sounds.
If you are married, did you wear a veil with your wedding dress? No. I wore a bunch of feathered and beaded hairpins. Every time they would plunk a veil on my head at the bridal shop, I would burst out into laughter. I wanted to feel beautiful, not like I was playing dress up.
Do you wear a watch? Always. I would sleep in it, if I could.
What item of clothing always makes you feel extremely beautiful? A beautiful dress. I love getting dressed up.
What is your favorite type of yarn? Cashmere, of course.
Do you prefer zippers or buttons? Buttons. Always.
Tuesday, March 4, 2008
watch polo. I used to ride horses for years and I really enjoy how the horses and players interact. I found a British company, Joules
that makes fantastic polo shirts. They also have some cute dresses too!
I don't really dig pastels but I might make an exception for an elephant polo jersey.
Anywho, he said that I could get a new bag when he gets his first paycheck. Since his new job pays bi-weekly (yes!), that means I need to be browsing quite heavily. Here are the front runners. Any thoughts?
1) Dooney and Bourke, Giraffe Large Sac, $395. Who the heck knew I'd like a D&B? Honestly, I hate their fabric bags. Even for teenagers, they just reek of meh. Anywho, I like this bag because it's GINORMOUS. But still refined, no? And I definitely love me some animal print.
2) Kate Spade, New Canaan $395. Of course I love me some Kate, too. I like the side pockets and the peppy color. The only thing I don't dig is that the top is open except for a center zippered partition. As a downtown sort of gal, I like the security of keeping everything locked up tight.
3) Dooney and Bourke, Croco Large Domed Pocket Zip Top, $525. I'm charmed at how lady-like this bag aims to be. Doesn't it look like it belongs on the arm of a lady who lunches? But it's also big enough to stick files and a small macbook. They have it in some fun colors but I really think when dealing with croc (even fake) it should be brown.
4) Coach, Madeline tote, $428. I saw this with DH when we stopped in at Coach to get my watch band fixed. The color is a bright, happy kelly green and I couldn't stop wearing it. I haven't been into Coach in a long time because of the pervasiveness of the "C" fabric bags. I know that Coach is an affordable luxury but that doesn't mean you should dilute the bags so that 10 year old girls can afford one on a $10 weekly salary. That being said, this bag is very cleaned-up for Coach and the oversized turn latch reminds me of my first Coach bag way back in the 1980s.
A note on handbags: Someone asked me why, if I am so obsessed with handbags, I don't go for the luxe "IT" bags. Why haven't I "upgraded" to MJ, LV, BV, etc... Here's the truth: I just can't stomach spending over a grand on a bag. I'd much rather have a great, well made $500 bag than the latest Chanel. I also like American designers. Michael Kors, Kate Spade, Coach, Ralph Lauren, etc.... They speak to me and my preppy nature. So there, that is why I will never spend $2000 on a Bottega Veneta. (But I wouldn't mind if someone bought it for me!)