Sunday, October 25, 2009

Mea culpa

Ok, I would like to apologize for my prior hissy-fit. DH has talked me down from my fatalistic "Goodbye, forever, Cruel World" speech.

A perfect storm of bad days at the office and my XX birthday on the 26th left me, well, pretty damn despondent. I have heard from several of you (thanks for calling) and have decided to leave P,SU up.

I am, however, still taking a two week break from blogging, to reevaluate what I want to say to the world.

This week I had a moment where I felt guilty because I hadn't posted anything. And I thought to myself "I should do that - it would be fun for the blog."

For. the. Blog.

Not for me. Not for DH. For my online diary.

As much as I love you guys, that's pretty messed up.

My life is my life - not Elliott's. I like sharing parts of it but I don't share everything. When Elliott takes precedence over my IRL-life, I need a break.

So I will return in two weeks, another year older, hopefully a lot wiser. Thanks for still listening.

Elliott, out.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Monday, October 12, 2009

Giveaway winner

Drum roll, please....

The winner of my first giveaway is Prep in the Big Apple!

Thanks to all who entered - I'm really enjoying your blogs!


Saturday, October 10, 2009

Tweedle Dee or Tweedle Dum?

First up: You have until tomorrow night to enter my Cath Kidson giveaway right here.

Second: I'm still having massive allergy issues and my throat is itchy and scratchy. I currently sound like a cross between a pirate and a sex phone operator.

"Arrrgh? Yeah be wantin' company tonight? Call me Kiki..."

*cough* ahem *cough*

To help with the dry cough I've been eating local honey. In addition to coating the throat so that I don't have to suck on nasty halls cough drops all day, the pollen in the honey is supposed to help with seasonal allergies. Sort of homeopathic immersion therapy.

All I know is that it's delicious.

So eat it a lot, straight off the spoon.

For my health.

Third: A quick poll.

Which would you buy:

Anthropologie Wrapped-in-Ruffles Jacket

Or the JCrew Eden blazer

I know that one's technically a boiled wool sweater and the other a blazer, but I have sorted my closet and realized that I'm sorely missing a plum item in my fall wardrobe.

So if price and weather (i.e. neither of these actually have to keep me warm) weren't an issue, which one do you like?

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

My evening...

Will be lots of this:

+ 30Rock on DVD and surrounded by all my new friends:

(Don't worry, I'm not mixing meds. I'm treating myself with different formulations at the appropriate intervals)

Who knew San Diego allergies were this bad? Ugh, I feel like my face is being stomped on by a pack of elephants with PMS. (Can elephants get PMS? I feel that my face elephants are very angry, in any case.) On the advice of Nic, I'm actually tempted to buy a neti pot. Has anyone used one?

Monday, October 5, 2009


To celebrate my wonderful trip to the UK, I'm giving away a little care package of English treats including:

Yorkshire Tea, which in my humble opinion, is the tastiest of the English brews. DH also went to the University of York, so it's also a little shout out to his alma mater.

A set of four cheery red breakfast napkins from Cath Kidson.

A Cath Kidson oilcloth luggage tag. Because I'm always the person who loses their luggage. No really, I adore polka dots and think they should be used more often. Don't you agree?

So here are the rules and fine print:

Leave me a comment with your favorite English person/place/thing for 1 entry.
Leave me a SECOND comment if you are a follower/become a follower for a 2nd entry.
Leave me a THIRD comment if you blog about this on your bloggie blog for a 3rd entry.

The contest will close at 10pm PST (my bedtime) on Sunday, October 11th.
A random number generator will select one winner from the numbered comments.

Pip pip, cheerio, good luck and good night!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

DC finally has its own poster from Ork!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Vaca 5

Day 15: Warrington/Manchester

So after Barcelona we had one day left in Warrington with DH's family. DH's dad volunteers regularly at the Quarry Bank Mill and Styal Estate in Cheshire.

The Mill is a pretty harsh reminder of the Industrial Revolution but the estate is beautiful and has a Secret Garden-ish, well, garden. DH's dad has worked like crazy and he and the volunteers have cleared acres of overgrown garden. Highlights include a little statue of Pan and a tree with a large growth on it. If you squint your eyes it looks like winnie the pooh!

(Me and DH near the Mill, Pan, DH and his parents on the bridge crossing over the creek, and the winnie-the-pooh tree)
I really can't convey how absolutely beautiful our walk was through the garden. It was a little drizzly and all of the formal flower gardens just screamed "Hello! I'm English!" I kept thinking that it would have been an AMAZING place to run around in when you were a kid.
(hydrangeas, examples of the soil/rock erosion, the estate next to the Mill, me famiglia)
It was a wonderful day out and I'm so glad we got to see what B, DH's dad, loves so much.

Days 16-18: Washington, Stafford, and San Diego
The next day we flew from MAN to FRA to IAD in order to make E&C's rehearsal dinner at Chadwick's in Old Town. Unfortunately, due to four MASSIVE planes landing before us, our trip through baggage/customs/passport control took WAY longer than expected. DH and I had literally 15 minutes to shower/makeup/change and head out the door.

But I still took time for a couple of puppy-cam snaps:
General Westmoreland, my parents Westie, is my favorite ball of fluff. He's a cuddle monster and I call him my Wes-Wes. Since he's about 8000 years old, his eyesight is going rapidly but he still knows my scent.

After tons of yummy food at Chadwick's, DH and I crashed hard at home.

In fairness, we were five hours ahead on time zones.

The next day we headed to the wedding at Rock Hill
Plantation in Stafford, VA.

And yes, that is the exact pose I had with my date in 9th grade when we went to Homecoming. I love pics like that.

Also, my dress is not as flattering in photos as it is on. It is a little too big which I think it a problem.

Good friend L, offered us a ride with K&J. We headed down 95 extra early (to account for traffic) and had enough time to dive into Chili's for margaritas before the ceremony.

Rock Hill is a beautiful house in the middle of the country in Virginia. The owner is a hilarious ex-Irish priest who performed the ceremony.

I met C while we were living in Ireland so the priest's accent brought it all home.

DH, J, K and L in the last row. Last row = 1st people to see the bride and groom down the aisle!

E&C making their way down the aisle. C was so beautiful, I had to ask DH for his secret supply of tissues. The dress was perfect and bustled beautifully!
After the ceremony we had a cocktail hour in the manor house. We had a few drinks and then decided we needed to head down from the house to the goat/miniature horse pen. Best quotation of the wedding goes to K: "This isn't the first wedding I've been to where there were goats."

I have to give E&C big thanks for not having table assignments. We had the best table. Friends from DC, friends from college, friends from med school.

It. Was. Awesome.

Most of us met at the bridal shower in Philadelphia so we were chatting away like old friends.

And I don't mean to brag but we definitely danced the night away.

DH and I after the fantastic buffet.
I could have gone back for seconds.

Oh wait.

I did.

Good thing that dress was a little too big.

The whole wedding was so much fun.

I believe this was during "Single Ladies" by Beyonce

(The bride and I were cuttin' a rug when we joined by some of the little guests.)

DC ladiesSo, I met the bride while she was on her Junior year abroad and I was in grad school in Ireland. I returned to DC and she headed back to San Diego where she was good friends with J. C moved to DC (yay!) to work at NIH and J followed soon thereafter to go to grad school. I introduced them to L, who I sort of knew in college but really got to know when she moved to DC after graduation.


To finish up, this is my favorite photo of the bride EVER.

That is one happy lady with her marriage certificate.

Congratulations E and C. We wish you a long and happy marriage. Come visit!

The next day we hopped a flight home to San Diego and that was our crazy vacation!

Tomorrow I'll post about my English goodies I brought back for my first giveaway!!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

So my college buddy Chris has headed back to law school. The guy is brilliant but more importantly, he's hilarious. Each week he posts a 2-min video on youtube. I highly recommend. :)

Sunday, September 27, 2009


Wow, what a hug from some special ladies!

My bestest, Nic from Cupcakes with Nic, and Ms. Starlet from Southern Starlet both nominated me for a Kreativ Blogger award. Thank you ladies, for making me smile.

I write my blog mostly as an outlet for myself but I'm glad that some of you are also enjoying. :)

So here are the rules of the reward:
  1. Thank the person who nominated you for this award.
  2. Copy the logo and place it on your blog.
  3. Link to the person who nominated you for this award.
  4. Name 7 things about yourself that people may not know.
  5. Nominate 7 Kreativ Bloggers.
  6. Post links to the 7 blogs you nominate.
  7. Leave a comment on each of the blogs letting them know they've been nominated.
7 things that most people don't know and don't really care about me:

1. I have incredibly vivid, Ally McBeal-style daydreams. All day long. It's like an episode of Herman's Head up in there:

2. I eat frightening amounts of spinach. I put it in EVERYTHING including smoothies, salads, pizza, pasta, and sandos. I even sneak it into baked goods. (Ask me about my brownie recipe sometime. ;))

3. I hate putting away laundry. I'd rather tackle the toilet than sort socks.

4. My favorite word in the entire world is bibliotheque. Bib-lio-theque. I just love how it rolls off the tongue.

5. I do not have a natural sense of rhythm. Like, I was actually tested and my aptitude level is in the 4% column. Yes, 96% of the population has more natural rhythm than me.

6. I am 32 flavors and then some.

7. When I was little, I liked to hide out in my closet where I had a flashlight, stuffed animals and my blankie. This wasn't a problem until I fell asleep one day and the babysitter called the police.

My nominations are all blogs that I love to read and look forward to their posts every morning!
A Southern Accent
Chic Runner
Preppy Lizard
Heffer Blog
Le Petite Blog
Running Just as Fast as I Can
Wila's Way

Thanks again to Nic and Starlet - hugs to you!!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Vaca Part 4

Day 11: Back to Warrington via Cheltenham

After our excellent weekend with C1 & C2 we bid our adieu and headed to a cheese and cider festival at The Royal Oak in Cheltenham.

Cider, that is, real cider or its pear cousin perry, is a STRONG drink. Because the line for cider was really really long, I split my pints with A, one of DH's good friends that I adore.

I promise, A, I like you so much more than these photos show. My mouth gets tired when I smile too much!
Some of the ciders were really fabulous. Dry, fruity, a touch sweet. Then there were ciders that tasted like burnt, dirty hot dog water. No joke. How we got through that glass is beyond me.

Anywho, a couple hours later and I was wasted. Completely off my face. I started taking random photos, including the one below of the Quite sign. For some reason I thought this was the funniest thing ever.
I then proceeded to cry in the car for half an hour, telling DH (huge sobbing voice): "I'm horrible at my jooooooob. I fooooool them every day!"


Apparently cider brings out my insecurities.

DH bought me a triangle sandwich at Marks&Spenser and I was happy again. So to sum up:

Cider = insecure Elliott
insecure Elliott + cheese and pickle sandwich = happy Elliott

Days 12-14: Barcelona!

DH and I left the next morning on the 6am flight from Liverpool to Barcelona. I'd never been to Spain so I was SO excited.

We took the train into town, threw our bags into our excellent, modern room in Hotel Goya, and walked La Rambla! La Rambla is a tree-lined street that splits the center of town and there is NO better way to get a feel for Barcelona. We had tapas at a forgettable bar but the bottle of rioja was excellent. :)

After La Rambla, we headed to the harbor and the beach. Barcelona's beach is man-made but absolutely beautiful. We spent the early evening people watching at a little beach bar.
(Amazing sand castles with water fixtures!, DH enjoying a mojito at the beach, football stadium, and the Port of Barcelona)

The Spanish eat meals MUCH later than Americans so we headed to Barri Gotic around 10 to grab dinner. I LOVED the Gothic Quarter/Barcelona Cathedral. It was filled with dark and twisty cobblestone streets. Surprisingly, I didn't feel unsafe. I guess when an 80 year old Grandma is shuffling through the alley with you, you figure you're in an ok area.
(La Sandrada Familia, Monument a Colom, Casa Batllo, jambon at Mercat de la Boqueria)

The next morning I woke up feeling virus-y/food poisoning-y. Let's just say that I have a great appreciation for our hotel's original 18th century bathroom tiles. UGH.

DH took great care of me, including running to the pharmacy about 10 times. He also brought me the Spanish equivalent to ginger ale and Saltines: Lemon Fanta and breadsticks. HAHA.

The next day I was able to get out of bed so we took it easy and went on the tourist bus! Laugh if you will but it was actually really interesting and we saw SO much more of Barcelona than if we had walked.
(Bus tour, Casa Mila by Gaudi, the incredibly detailed street lights, Porto)
We saw all of Barcelona's "greatest hits" including Sangrada Familia, Casa Mila, FC Barcelona's football stadium, the Olympic Stadium (holy cow, what a view!), and Catedral Barcelona. The bus is the hop on/hop off type so if you want to visit any place you can. Even though it seems really touristy and cheesy, I really recommend it!

We headed back to Barri Gotic for a quick meal of tapas, including the incredible jamon, and then back to the airport for our Liverpool flight.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Sunday, September 20, 2009

World's saddest baby toy...

Here little *Insert Emma/Connor/Brady/baby name de jour*, naw on a carrot! It's fun because it has a little face!

Because that wouldn't make dinner time traumatic at all. Noooo.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Trip 3

Day 6 - Leeds
DH and I headed out the next day to Leeds on our way to visit S&R.

Neither of us had really "done" Leeds so we mostly walked around. The buildings were fantastic. There was also a main shopping street that was packed with street performers. I tell ya, the guy singing Jason Mraz was better than JM himself!

After Leeds, we headed up to Almscliffe. DH and his buddies would go up there on a semi-regular basis to go climbing or bouldering.

I mean, look at that view. Gorgeous!

We spent the night at S&R's beautiful new house. They are in the home stretch for their first bebe and are going to be fabulous parents.

Thanks for hosting us S&R!

Day 7-10: Cambridge/Stevenage/London

The next morning we detoured through Cambridge on our way to visit DH's best friend, C, in Stevenage.

Again, I'd never been to Cambridge so it was super fun to walk down the river(?) and see the punters, all of the old colleges and in general, get a feel for the place.

DH's ex went to Cambridge so he knew about a fun little place for our afternoon tea.

The Orchard Tea Garden in Grantchester is, not surprisingly, a tea shop in the middle of a beautiful fruit orchard.

Founded at the turn of the century, the Orchard boasts an impressive list of alumni, called the Grantchester Group, including Virginia Woolf, Alan Keynes, and Rupert Brooke, who wrote a poem extolling the virtues of Grantchester.

A little further along, Sylvia Plath (loooove!) and Ted Hughes spent time at the Orchard. Plath wrote:

“Remember Rupert Brooke’s poem? Well we had tea by the roaring fire at ‘The Orchard’ (where they serve tea under flowering trees in spring) and the ‘clock was set at ten to three’ and there was the most delectable dark clover honey and scones.”

I have to agree with Sylvia, the scones were delicious!

We headed to Stevenage quickly because our tea was threatened by whipping winds, threatening dark clouds, a swarm of wasps who were quite interested in our tiny pots of raspberry and strawberry jam.

That night we broke out the bubbly and toasted our wonderful friends C1 and C2. DH's best friend (and best man!), C1, proposed several weeks before to his wonderful girlfriend, C2. (He did it at the Take That reunion concert. How cute is that??)

The next morning we headed to London for a walk around, shopping, and a bit of pubbing. Now, I've been to London 6(?) times and this was by far my favorite day I've spent there.

We started in Covent Garden, which was filled with shoppers and street performers. We moved over to Wagamama, my favorite lunch spot for ramen noodles.

(Word to the wise: Wagamama has finally opened a branch in the US, in Boston. If you are in the area, PLEASE go and have chili chicken ramen. That stuff is THE BOMB.)

(Clockwise from top left corner: Brilliant pear cider in London, C&C at Wagamama, the dumbwaiter at Waxy's, more pear cider, C&C again, DH enjoying a pint)
After a bit of light shopping (yes, I stopped at Cath Kidson again. She really is the new Laura Ashley.) we went to Waxy O'Connor's Little Sister right off of Leicester Square. The upstairs bit to this bar is so clever. There's a dumbwaiter where you write down your order and stick in money for the bill. Lower it down and in a few minutes your drinks are hauled up to you. Definitely beats trying to carry your round up the stairs!

We then headed to The Living Room off Regent Street for delicious cocktails. A beautiful bar, the drinks were strong and the atmosphere posh without being stuffy at all.

If you try going to the restrooms downstairs here's a clue to what to look for. -->

Tricky bastards.

After dinner we headed back to Stevenage on the train for a night of Rock Band. As I drifted off to sleep, I remember thinking that the day was one of the nicest I've had in a long time.

I really feel lucky to have been blessed so much in my life.

Never underestimate the fun of good friends, beautiful weather, and a couple of cocktails.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Monday, September 14, 2009

Vacation Part 2

Day 4: Blackpool
DH and I headed to Blackpool Pleasure Beach. BPB is best described as Gatlinburg for English people. Totally fun but WAY tacky and wacky. (I don't judge; we used to head to Gatlinburg once a year when I lived in Tennessee.)

Anywho, BPB has tons of old roller coasters that while rickety as H, they provide a great afternoon of fun. Grand National is from 1935 and the Big Dipper is from 1923! 1923! I can only imagine how freaking scary that ride must have been to folks back then.

Day 5: Trafford
I love shopping in the UK. The way I see it, no one else in San Diego will have what I'm wearing, even if it's just from a high street store. And DH isn't the biggest fan of American fashion and desperately needed new clothes so we headed up to Trafford Centre to get kitted out.

Let me just say: WOW. We probably spent 5+ hours there and I wasn't even close to being finished. I have discovered my English shopping mecca: Selfridges. OMG. It's like a cross between Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus, meaning, you can find high end (Burberry, Louis, etc) alongside the more mid-range (Warehouse, Oasis). I picked up the dress above for a song. It's shorter than I normally wear and it has a deep v back but it had a sort of 80s feel that I was digging. SO cute!

Back to mecca: the homewares. OMG. I wanted to buy the entire linen department. Orla Kiely sheets?? In the words of Rachel Zoe: I Diiiiiieeeeeeee. You don't notice until you see high end European design that you literally cannot find some of it in the states. Durr.

After making my way through linen, lamps, and glassware, I hit the motherload of that is British country goodness: Cath Kidson.

I'm not really a shabby-chic sort of girl but oooohhh, did the darling fabrics and dainty goods get me. Cath Kidson is known for their oilcloth and it definitely has a certain post-war aesthetic and appeal. I bought a bunch of goodies, some of which you might see during my giveaway later this week!

I particularly loved their handbags and jewelry. I mean look at these dainty crystal bows! In antique silver, no less.

I also love, love, love the hunter green polka dot saddle bag. The oilcloth gives it a 40s feel. I picture myself in an Anthropologie dress, with this bag draped across as I peddle my 5-speed beach cruiser over to the farmer's market. Not that I haven't been thinking about that bag.

Not. At. All.

I guess you could say I'm a shabby chic convert now. Unfortunately, Cath Kidson is only found in the UK and Japan.

But they do ship internationally.


Friday, September 11, 2009

A tiny tip...

You know when you're sitting around the lady doctor's office, half-naked, waiting for the doc to come in?

Inevitably you're there for 20 minutes, it's cold, and they never have any magazines besides Prevention.

But no matter how bored you are, NEVER, EVER read the booklet "Gynological Cancers."

Sweet Jesus.

I now know what my new nightmare will be.

I assuaged my fears after my appointment by buying a new pair of black, high heel sandals. Phew.

It reminds me of Strictly Ballroom for some reason...

Picked up this lace blouse at Warehouse while in the UK.

I've worn it six times in two weeks. (All with different people, I might add.)

I think it's my new favorite item in my closet!!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Vacation Part I

Hello my dear readers!

I know, long time, no read. I do that a lot to you, don't I?

This time, however, I have a really good reason; DH and I were on holiday! (Or to translate into American "Vaca!") DH wouldn't let me tell you about it in advance because he's convinced that someone would figure out our address and break in while we were gone. Nevermind that most of the people who read this know us in real life and offered to watch our plants. Which requires us giving them our keys.

And not to mention that breaking and entering is so un-preppy that I know my readers would never be associated with anything like that.

So all you master criminals - HA! We fooled you.

DH and I went back to the UK and Spain for two weeks. Two weeks! We haven't had that long off since our wedding two years ago. I know he especially needed the break so I'm glad we were able to see his family and friends as well as chill out. Well, I say chill out but it has been an absolute whirlwind. I believe we did 12 flights in 16 days. Yikes!

Anywho, I'll take my re-cap nice and slow and at the end I'll be hosting my first GIVEAWAY for some fabulous British goodies. I'm excited. Are you excited? Let's venture forth:

Day 1: San Diego to Baltimore/Washington
Flying back to the East Coast is quite a pain because you lose an entire day. However, we caught the 7am flight so that we could spend a little time with my parents (who graciously agreed to pick us up at BWI) before we headed out for dinner with some of DH's DC crew.

Well, someone decided to put a damper on that. Namely, Hurricane Bill.

We landed on time but because of the massive amount of rain and traffic associated with Redskins and Nationals games, the one hour drive to my parents' place was THREE hours. Lord!

DH and I literally walked in, threw our bags down, and ran back out to make our metro ride in to DC. (Muhmoo and Deedoo, I feel terrible about that. I really, really do!)

We had dinner with DH's old work mates and their wives. See, aren't they cute:

My good mate L met us up for drinks after and we had a rip-roaring time in Fado's. Who loves a good pint of cider? Oh, that would be me.

Day 2: Washington Dulles to Manchester
Before our flight to Manchester, the fam went out for brunch at Tuscarora Mill in Leesburg, VA. If you have a flight to catch at Washington Dulles, I heartily recommend Tuscarora. DC is a brunch town and this had one of the best I've had.

The Mill is, shockingly, hosted in an old mill. The interior is absolutely beautiful and I wanted to rip the floorboards out and smuggle them home so I could match them for our hardwood floors.

The food was amazing, as all of the awards on the wall boasted. I think one of the things I like the most was that the buffet was small and not overwhelming. If you go, though, make sure to try the french toast. They make all their own bread and it is OMG, get in my mouth as soon as possible!! good.

Our night flight to Manchester was uneventful and not crowded. I stretched out on a row of five empty seats and slept until we had about an hour to go.

Day 3: Warrington
After our night flight, we were pretty wrecked since England is 8 hours ahead of San Diego. We kept it pretty quiet and had a great dinner at DH's parents' place, along with S and E, DH's brother and sister-in-law. It was quite the family moment! :)

When we're in England we always stay with DH's parents. They've lived in their house for over 30(!) years and I adore the fact that DH grew up in it. It's also great because a lot of his childhood friends still live in the surrounding areas so we have an easy time meeting up with all of them.

That being said, a surprisingly large number of DH's friends have emigrated out of the UK. So it was an amazing coincidence that K and N were home in England from Japan for the first time in like, five years! We headed out to the pub and it was fantastic catching up with them.

Monday, September 7, 2009

9 September 2007

Two years ago I promised to love and respect, till death do us part, the man who loves and challenges me more than anyone else...

So here's to my better half, the man who makes my world better and brighter.
Northern Sky, Nick Drake
I never felt magic crazy as this
I never saw moons knew the meaning of the sea
I never held emotion in the palm of my hand
Or felt sweet breezes in the top of a tree

But now you're here
Brighten my northern sky.

I've been a long time that I'm waiting
Been a long that I'm blown
I've been a long time that I've wandered
Through the people I have known
Oh, if you would and you could
Straighten my new mind's eye.

Would you love me for my money?
Would you love me for my head?
Would you love me through the winter?
Would you love me 'til I'm dead?
Oh, if you would and you could
Come blow your horn on high.
I never felt magic crazy as this
I never saw moons knew the meaning of the sea
I never held emotion in the palm of my hand
Or felt sweet breezes in the top of a tree
But now you're here. Brighten my northern sky.

Monday, August 17, 2009

I feel like Mary Jane Parker

Although I've had two showers this weekend, I didn't wash my hair until after the gym tonight to let it set for 48 hours.

Not having done color since 2002, I thought more of the color would wash out but the re-pigment treatment really helped!

Re-pigmenting, if you haven't had it done, involves covering your beautiful baby blonde hair with goo the color of a highlighter. Because you strip out the pigment to go blonde, you need pigment to help go back to a darker color.

Anywho, Gavin and Rich, the colorists, told me that I wasn't allowed to look in the mirror so they turned the chair around a la What Not to Wear.

What they didn't know is that I could see my hair in the mirror across the salon. I literally yelled (pardon my French) "OH MY FUCKING GOD!"

Bright. Orange.

I looked like Ronald McDonald.

Gavin and Rich held my hand and told me to trust them. They were right.

(Props to DH for taking my picture. This one is much more flattering than in the bathroom with overhead lighting and no flash! Also, my boobs look really big. Do they look like this all the time? Heaven help us!)

Sunday, August 16, 2009


I am the first person to admit when I am a failure in the kitchen. DH is very forgiving and we head out to Cowboy Star when my experiments are duds.

However, tonight I reached perfection. Cookie nirvana, if you will.


These are, without a doubt, the best chocolate chip cookies I have ever made.

My tips:
  • Due to our convection oven, I lowered the temperature by 50 degrees
  • I added 1 1/2 tbs vanilla
  • 3 cups of flour and extra baking powder
  • Cooling down the batter for two hours before attempting to bake
  • Fewer chocolate chips and double the walnuts
The extra flour and baking powder kept the cookie quite high, as did the cooling down. If you start off with dough that is too warm, it flattens too much. Also, by keeping the cookies high, I was able to get the optimal crunchy rim with gooey, almost cookie dough-ish center.

I tell ya, this baking thing is a science.