Hipstamatic is Ruining My Marriage

Okay, so Chase has FINALLY arrived in town for a visit and this past weekend we decided to rent out a room at a bed & breakfast in Asheville so that we could take in the sites and have some, ahem, privacy. I have forgotten in the two months that we’ve been apart that Chase is capable of sleeping far longer and more often than me. He sees sleeping as a recreational activity to be engaged in whenever possible, whereas I view it as something I have to do when my body makes me. This resulted in me being completely bored out of my mind when he took a nap one afternoon and I was left wide awake and realized I had OF COURSE left my kindle at home. I flipped through channels on the TV in the room but apparently this hotel was under the impression that everyone else staying there would be content enough to just take in the mountain scenery, considering the line-up consisted of only two channels, one of them being a constant weather forecast. I mean, nature is awesome and all but where are my Housewives? (if you listen carefully you can hear a collective groan from my “get out and play” parents as they read this last sentence)

So… I turned to the next best thing, my iPhone, and eventually focused on the Hipstamatic app I bought a few weeks ago. I purchased this after hearing that it was “sooo cool” from my neighbor, but initially was turned off when I found out that it isn’t as easy as a point-and-shoot, you actually have to pick which “lens,” “film” and even which “flash” you want to use. It’s like using Instagram except you have to actually do work and use your mind and stuff. No, thank you.

Now that I was bored out of my mind I decided to start playing around all the settings because, well, that sounded better than staring at the wall. Now…I’m kinda hooked. I ended up running all over the room snapping off pictures, which didn’t really help much in the way of Chase’s nap. These were all taken using the Jimmy Lens, which I love  because it gives a very nostalgic look to the photos. This fit the setting perfectly since the bed & breakfast we chose was advertised as being “historic” and they were not joking.

Espresso Granita

Granitas are a dessert that I tend to forget about and then kick myself for not cooking them more often whenever I do. They are soooo easy to make that I really have no excuse for not keeping them around. You can pretty much mix up any combination of fruit juices with a little cream or yogurt (if you’re into that kind of thing) freeze it, then scrape the heck out of it with a fork until you have lots of tiny little flavor crystals. Then as the long summer months drag on you simply scoop out a little bit whenever you feel the need for something icy.

Seriously, lets review how easy this recipe is:

Brew some really strong coffee. If you have an amazingly beautiful french press like my parents, this will be even more fun.

Stir in some sugar and vanilla extract. Then freeze it solid. You might want to stir it up when it’s half-frozen, but I forgot and it still turned out fine.

Now take a fork and scrape the snot out of it. Ignore that I just used the term “snot” to describe something you’re going to eat later.

This was the first time that I had heard of using espresso in a granita and forgoing the fruit. It basically just turns your morning iced coffee into an elegant dessert. Or dessert into something you can eat at breakfast. Either way.

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No Explanation Needed

Sunday I took this picture, and it has made me smile all week long. Which is really saying something, given the kind of week I’ve had.

On Monday morning I tried to answer the phone at work and in my still-sleepy state I got tongue tied and spoke in complete gibberish to the person on the phone. I tried to cover this up by saying, “Oh sorry, we have a bad connection.” Maybe she actually believed that. Probably not.

Tuesday, it was raining when I left my office. Which should have been fine, since I remembered to bring my raincoat…except I forgot to take it out of my car, which was parked outside, about 10 yards from the door.

Wednesday, I realized that for no explicable reason I had been writing the date as 6/18 for the last three days. I swear to God this happened. I wrote the wrong date on paperwork for THREE DAYS IN A ROW.

Yesterday everyone in my office was sick. Except me. So yeah…that’s probably gonna happen soon. Given that I am slowly descending into being the gibberish speaking girl who doesn’t know what day it is, they might not mind if I’m out with a cold for a few days.

But back to the photo – this is my cousin Gil’s son Mo, who picked out this outfit all by himself. Gil was quick to explain that Mo wanted to wear a tie because he wanted to look like his Dad. There was no explanation offered for the cowboy boots, since of course, why would anyone ever need to explain the desire to wear cowboy boots?

Swedish Creme with Berries

Stop right there. I have to warn you that if you’re still in bathing suit mode, and are still hanging on to some hope that you’re going to make all the other girls jealous when you walk out to the pool with your perfect body, you need to turn away from the computer now. This is especially true if you’re like me and can justify that anything with fresh fruit in it is “healthy” and “non-fat.” If this is you, please leave this website immediately.

It doesn’t make things any better that this recipe is stupidly easy to make – oh, and if you add blueberries and strawberries it is the PERFECT dish for 4th of July – simple, delicious and color-coordinated.

Uggh, I know. I sucked you in, didn’t I? You’re gonna be eating this on July 4th with a big, flowy cover up over that not-perfect bathing suit body, aren’t you?

It’s okay. You’ll still be happy. I promise.

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Leave a Message at the Beep

When I’m sitting at my desk at work, I like to respond to things quickly. Like, if you text me I try to text back right away. If I get a message on Facebook I have to make myself wait 5 minutes so it doesn’t look like I sit on that site all day – which I totally DON’T DO.

But then on the weekends I get into a weird pouty phase and think, “you know what, I’m not texting you back cause I am soooo not your slave or anything” even though all I got was a text from a friend asking if I watched “Glee” last night. Well, I will show her and not text her back for a WHOLE HOUR.  So yeah, take that, good friend of mine. I’m gonna go disappear for a while and get back to you later.

In North Carolina, to disappear for a while means picking some road and driving farther down it than I’ve ever been. It means stopping my car, and leaving my phone inside while I go for a walk. It means going to a field like this. And taking photos, and hoping that no one in a passing car recognizes me. That tends to happen in the small town you grew up in.

I would totally love to tell you where this is. But if I did, I’d have to kill you. Everyone needs a secret now and then.

Save the Ta-Tas

This past Saturday I got up at 5:30am. Are you reading this?? 5:30 AM.  As in, before the sun came up. AND I didn’t have to go to work that day.  To be clear, there are very few things that will get me up at such an ungodly hour. A paycheck will do it, and after this weekend, it’s apparent I will also get up for…boobs. I got up at 5:30am because of boobs.

Guys, you’re with me on this, right? You would get up at 5:30am for boobs wouldn’t you? I’m surprised I didn’t see more men at the Race For The Cure in Raleigh this past Saturday, since you think they would be equally, if not more concerned with saving the ta-tas. I can tell you right now that if I had to have my breast removed Chase that would be way more upset than me. He actually once confessed that he “wouldn’t be opposed” to me getting a boob job. And I had to do everything I could not to laugh in his face because unless I get cancer THAT IS NEVER GOING TO HAPPEN.

Fun fact – if you attend the race and are a woman that has beaten breast cancer, you get to wear a special bright pink shirt. If you’re a man though, they give you a lame gray one. Seriously, you can barely pick them out of the crowd. Maybe the shirt designers feel that men are self conscious about the fact that they had breast cancer, but if I ever beat cancer, of any variety, I better be given the brightest shirt available and a blow horn cause I am gonna let everyone know that I kicked cancer’s ASS and yeah, it may have been in my breasts but that still means I’m tougher than you. Just sayin.

And in case you’re wondering, I was in the recreational walk, not the actual race where you have to run and stuff. That would have required that I get up at 4:30 am instead of 5:30am. And it would have required running, which pretty much sums up my version of hell. Since the boobs in question wouldn’t know the difference as to what speed I went, I figured that a leisurely walk was the preferred option.

My point in all this rambling is that this is a cause we should all be equally concerned about. All the ladies who came out on Saturday should drag their husbands along next time, cause certainly we can all agree that boob health is not something that only affects women. Again, to all the men – you would get up early for boobs, right? Or at least send a little support their way?

Creamy Roasted Red Pepper Pasta

If I ever cook for you, I suggest you clarify as to whether this is a recipe that I’ve made before or not. If I tell you it’s the first time, please proceed with caution. I tend to be a bit lackadaisical when trying a new recipe, meaning the process goes something like this:

I find a recipe like this one and then skim through the instructions. Notice I said skim. Picking up key phrases like “red peppers” “place on baking sheet” and “roast in oven”,  I then take a couple red peppers, place them on a baking sheet, and slide it in the oven. It’s possible I’ll go check the recipe to see how what the oven temperature should be set at, but I also might just guess.

After a little while, I check on the peppers, which seem to be getting pretty dark. I wonder to myself, “Should I be turning these over or something?” I go back to the recipe, which inevitably says, most likely in bold print, “turn at least once while roasting.”

Honest to goodness, why does anything I cook ever turn out? I like to cook alone in the kitchen not because I enjoy solitude, but because I don’t want people making fun of me, or asking pesky questions like “should that pot be boiling over like that?” What a buzz kill.

A note – this original recipe had pine nuts in it. Did I use pine nuts? No, because I didn’t notice they were included until I was about to blend the sauce. And I don’t keep things like that on hand, since it would make life way too easy. If Chase had been around, I would have asked him to go to the store for me, which is why he’s taken to wearing headphones or jumping in the shower whenever I’m cooking.

Seriously, I do cook really tasty dishes. After the 2nd or 3rd try. Although, it should speak volumes that even my first attempt at this recipe was fabulous. Imagine what you’ll be able to do with it.

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