Thursday, July 31, 2008

Love me some Nelly Furtado

So the training officially started last weekend. I am doing the City to Sea 1/2 Marathon, but that is boring old news.

Needing to get a run in today, well I should have run Tuesday AND today, I headed to the gym. I though it would be a good change of pace and different scenery. Since it 2008 I decided to run with my ipod for the first time. Yes, i said it the first time. I never did get sucked into the vortex known as ipod land but it might have happened today.

I jumped onto the treadmill and who started belting out "She's a Maneater ..." known other than Nelly Furtado. She made me run a little faster, work a little harder and made me want to be a little more of a maneater!

As I was grooving to Nelly I looked up at the TV and some trashy soap opera was on. I watched for a minute and managed to figure out most of the story line without hearing a line of dialog. This distraction running is real good. And then she caught my eye! A girl I went to elementary school with was on the screen in front of me. Now Bullard TALENT (Teaching Able Learners Exciting New Techniques) has produced some damn good singers, actresses and dancers. Yes, we performed our little heart outs.

Yvonna Kopacz was the main star! Crap I went to school with her, her two little sisters and Sharon Leal who has played Mimi in Rent.

All i do is peddle textbooks. Look what good that performing art education did for me!

Well distract me any day with Nelly Furtado on my ipod and I will run my heart out, won't be staring on Broadway but dammit I will cross that finish line!

Ready to Become One with the ...


A few weeks ago I was sitting at my computer one evening (okay every evening) when i heard Denis say "Holy $hit, there is a spider in the house". Those of you that have been to our house know that we (Denis) tend to leave doors open to get the awesome ocean breeze and we (me) spend a lot of time vacuuming bugs out of the windowsills.

Since we live against a small mountain we tend to get all sorts of wildlife. Most of it we really love, with exception of the rattlesnake the first summer we were here, the tarantula that stuck itself to the side of the house for an entire day while Jake drooled. The dog is a hunter, what can I say?

We have seen tons of coyotes, hawks, quail (we get a family every year), owls, huge crows and a bunch of other critters that are just fine OUTSIDE.

Back to the comment from the hus ... I slowly turned around knowing that it must be impressive if Denis said something about it. Good God there was an effing tarantula on the wall of my kitchen. I do pride myself on handling spiders, lizards and the occasional mouse that Jake catches ... but a big ass hairy tarantula in my kitchen. I jumped out of my chair and started screaming that woke up Jake who Denis grabbed as he saw the tarantula. YUCK!

The hus saved the day and got that nasty spider out of my kitchen. The next day I ordered new screen doors!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

City to Sea ... 13.1 miles is really freakin' far!

Alright I am publicly making a commitment to run the City to Sea 1/2 Marathon in October. I've told a few people about this, but I have been wavering until I completed my 4.5 mile run today.

I know that 4.5 is far short of the 13.1 I will be running in October, but a girl has to start somewhere. This morning Denis and I ran along the coast in Carlsbad. It was nice and cool and I did a lot better than I thought I would. Other than the fact that I thought I was starting to get a migraine on the way home. Denis and I have been napping on the couch for the better part of 3 hours. This running thing isn't that bad after all.

Isn't it a little ironic that the only endurance races I have done are in San Luis Obispo?

Okay Jen - I am throwing my running shoes into the ring. See you in SLO on October 12th!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Happy National Chocolate Pudding Day!

Bet you didn't know that July 26th is National Chocolate Pudding Day? I didn't either but I will definitely celebrate this tonight! We are heading over to the fams house for our summer weekend fun of dinner, dessert and Mexican Train. Since I am in charge of dessert tonight we will be having CHOCOLATE PUDDING for sure.

How about chocolate pudding, with brownies pieces and cool whip? I'll be sure to post pics later.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Pink Grapefruit & Fresno

Bear with me on this one. It is Friday, it has been a long week and I am feeling a little nostalgic.

Earlier this afternoon I was a little hungry, but damn it is hot outside and I want something cold. I open the fridge ... and there I see it. A beautiful pink grapefruit. Man, does it look delicious. I grab it out, assemble the necessary grapefruit eating utensils (bowl, spoon, cutting board) and a knife. Here is where I get all mushy and nostalgic. Yes, over a knife.

I start cutting said grapefruit and immediately think of my mom. Now this could be because she is finally coming down to see us next month, or it could be that I am thinking of something Kate from John & Kate + 8 said (yes I watch that show) "we live in our house, but THIS is our home". Crap, I have to back up already. My mom always made sure we had a ton of fruit and veggies around while we were growing up. I thought everyone ate plums, apricots, artichokes, grapefruit, apples, grapes and everything else pretty much right from the fields. My dad would often bring home boxes of seasonal fruits from out in the area he patrolled ... come to think of it was it always safe to eat that?????

I digress again.

Right, grapefruit/mom/house vs home. Okay so often my mom would have grapefruit for my sister and I for breakfast. I vividly remember my mom using this old, yet very cool "grapefruit" knife to cut our halves into little pieces. Being amazed at this weird curved yet very effective knife, I loved eating grapefruit ... in my home in Fresno with my mom.

So I started thinking of Fresno. Denis and I will be heading up to Fresno in October for Leah's wedding. For the first time in a very long time I am excited about going to Fresno. Denis has never been to Fresno with me, never seen my home, never seen my high school (not too impressive these days), never known the Fresno part of me. Just like they say in the valley "You can take the girl out of Fresno, but you can't take Fresno out of the girl". Damn.

I wish I could take Denis into that house. The awesome hardwood floors, the original cedar closets, the basement, the perfectly square hallway, the butler door, the side yard I had to week more than once as punishment for something, our initials in the concrete by the back gate. Leah, help me? What else am I forgetting?

I do love my house in SM, but it still doesn't feel like home like 108 E. Weldon did. Maybe it will take 18 years.

So to come full circle, I'm excited to go to Fresno to show Denis my home where my mom used to use her cool grapefruit knife!

I would have loved to have used that knife today.

Good-Bye to You

Today is a sad day. My friend and colleague and temporary housemate moved to Park City, Utah today. She is going to for all the right reasons ... family, good job, skiing and did I say skiing? It isn't all that easy to find people you enjoy so much and love to have in your house for a few weeks around an amazing trip to Africa.

So Laura, we wish you well and can't wait to see you in Park City. Find those fishing holes and Denis will be there before you know!

Good luck and we miss you already!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Bacon for breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and now DESSERT!

This morning I was on one of my favorite websites of all times. Serious Eats is fantastic for so many reasons and today they once again proved to me that I will love them forever.
Not only did they do a local shout-out to Marini's Candies in Santa Cruz (known for their awesome salt water taffy), but it included bacon!

You have to check out this story about Chocolate covered bacon. My mom is coming to visit next month and I will not pick her up from the airport unless she has a bag of Marini's Chocolate Covered Bacon.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Downtown 'Dido Farmers Marketing

This afternoon my friend Lee Ann and I headed to the Escondido Farmers Market. It is a small, but great Farmer's Market. We started with cash in hand and ended up with:
Heirloom tomatoes
Fresh Basil
Lots of peaches and nectarines
Japanese grapes (so good)
The biggest radishes you have ever seen
and full bellies from all the samples!
So in celebration of the Farmer's Market and Sam the Cooking Guy ... I bring back Dinner with the Shefferd's. It isn't Sunday, but who doesn't love a cool summer pasta on a Tuesday night?

I love when my serving pieces match the meal!

Lots of fresh basil, heirloom tomatoes, raw garlic, olive oil and a little Parmesan make an awesome dinner!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Nee-Nee It's my burfday!

On Sunday morning I was woken up by a little voice telling me "Nee-Nee it's my burfday" at 7:15am. One of the most perfect princesses celebrated her 4th birthday yesterday complete with an ear piercing the day before, a fisher price karaoke machine, a rideable horse and Paint Your Own Pottery party and a pair of "camping shoes" from Chata! Denis loves Keen's and thought Amelia needed a pair. Now, as Amelia told me "I have campin' shoes just like Chata".
I can't believe little miss Amelia is four. It seems like yesterday when she was born and I was one the first people to see her. We love her and her sistermore than words can say.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY sweet girl!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

A little bit of style, a little bit of sass and a whole lot of bad-ass

This week while in NY I wore a new pair of flip flops that one of my fellow AS's called a little bit of style, a little bit of sass and a whole lot of bad-ass!Man do I love her sense of humor! A big birthday shout out to her as well. She is now something like 21!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Guncle Dave

One of my favorite people in the entire world has finally entered into the world 'o blogging.

Dave is one of the funniest people I know, he truly appreciates celeb sightings, reads Perez as much as I do and my future children will proudly call him Guncle Dave. Every child needs a Guncle Dave.

Take a look at what I read everyday from Dave.

3 Deadbolts ... I don't think so

Once again I am in NY with a zillion meetings and 10 hours of flying in three days. Well, this trip has been what I have deemed a "Jen Adventure". My friend and colleague Jen always runs into issues while traveling i.e. sleeping at the airport in Denver, always winning the travel from hell award.

I landed at JFK early and we didn't have a gate, so it started waiting on the runway. Do you have any idea how many hours I have spent on a runway in the last two year? Nothing will beat the JetBlue incident of 2007 (23 hours at the airport, 10 on a plane ... and got nowhere). We finally got a gate and I got in my car to come to the Rowdy. I love the Rowdy. It is my home away from home. Well apparently my house had changed the locks!

My reservation was nowhere to be found. Could have been my fault but I know I made a reservation. Of course the Rowdy was sold out so they were nice enough to book me a room at another hotel. Keep reading ... this is where it gets good.

So I show up at the "hotel" and I feel very if-y about this. There is NO central air conditioning (ever spent the night in a hotel room with no AC and windows that don't open, I don't recommend it). The guys at the front desk handed me a set, yes I said set of keys. I arrive at my room and have "that" feeling. The room has 2 deadbolt locks ... on the outside. Finally after juggling my keys, luggage, computer and that pit feeling in my stomach I get into the room. I would like to say that I thought "oh my god" but the words going through my head were much more colorful.

Ashtrays, smelly smells, no air and another 2 locks on the inside of the room were TOO MUCH for me. I made an about face and got the eff out. Since it was conveniently 5:45pm there wasn't a cab to catch. So I walked from 49th between 6th & 7th back to my blissful Rowdy.

Kate wins the "Kate is Great" award for sharing her room with me.

Tonight I blog from the comfort of my own room at my Home Away from Home.

Thanks Rowdy, I do love you.

Monday, July 7, 2008

The Handy Hus

Well our long weekend ended with ... a semi-cool fridge. All I could see was a million dollar signs for calling out what Denis referred to as the Maytag man. No need, I've got my OWN Maytag man and he is free!
He was so proud of himself and more importantly he saved a fridge and freezer full of food! You're a good man hus.