Thursday, June 30

Friday Dinner

Today is Thursday, which means tomorrow is Friday. (Forgive me for sounding like Rebecca Black just then.) Friday is the day that I weigh in, which means I go hungry Then, post weigh-in, I eat my apple with crunchy peanut butter and drink thirty-two ounces of water in one fell swoop. So basically, Fridays suck balls. But Friday night is when I make dinner. I start planning the meal on Monday and have practiced cooking it in my mind to perfection by the time I buy the groceries after I leave work on Friday. I started doing this a few months ago in an effort to cook more and reward myself for a week of healthy eating. I also read "My Life in France" and it inspired me to be brave and realize that my food doesn't have to be perfect and that every dish won't be a winner or to everyone's liking -- including mine.

This week I'm making Scallops with Basil Cream Sauce and Pasta.
I've been dreaming all week, nay, obsessing, about this lovely.
I can't wait to spin my fork around and dive in.

Here's how you make it ...

1] a tablespoon of garlic -- fresh if you're super cook, already minced and from the jar if you're me
2] 1/2 cup of white wine -- I'm using the leftover moscato
3] a chunk of butter -- like maybe 3 or 6 tablespoons 
4] combine these over medium-high until the wine cooks down and gets a bit thick
5] add scallops and cook for just 2 to 3 minutes per side, depending on how big your scallops are
6] remove pretty scallops
7] add 2 cups of heavy cream -- yum -- and simmer vigorously until nice and saucy
8] once sufficiently thick and creamy, add pasta and basil

Oh yeah, did I not tell you? You need to be cooking your pasta (I'm using linguine) while you're making the sauce.

9] add the scallops back in at the last minute because you don't want them to become overdone

Tra la la. Enjoy.

Here are some suggestions to pump up the recipe if you so wish it:
  • add some sauteed veg like spinach or peppers
  • sprinkle with red pepper flakes a la Giada
  • red onion would be delightful (if you like that sort of thing)
  • any fresh herb in addition to or in place of basil
  • eat with crusty bread
  • slice in some fresh tomato
  • swap out scallops for shrimp or crab
Remember, Julia Child advises us to never apologize for our cooking, so be fearless.

Tuesday, June 28

A Thought

Sometimes it's so hard to hold one's tongue,
never knowing how a misplaced phrase will be taken,
never wanting to offend.
But I can't help but wonder if the
world would be better with a bit more
Would we fill up with hate
Or would we start to treat each other
with MORE love
because we knew how much our
actions or words
hurt the people close to us
because they didn't try to spare our feelings
and told us exactly how those words made them feel?
What is honesty worth?

Friday, June 17

The Perfect Food

Sandwiches, obviously.
The last bite of a well made sandwich is just as delicious as the first.
The little bits that fall out are the perfect ending and leave you dreaming about the next time.
Because you have to eat it with your hands, your focus is entirely on the sandwich.
Your hands are full. Your belly is full.

I have a few staples that I love.
  • tomato with mayo and lots of salt and pepper
  • crunchy peanut butter and honey
  • grilled cheese with swiss
  • cucumber with cream cheese
  • fried egg -- yolk still soft so it spills out when you bite in
But today I found some nummy yummy new sammies to add to my mix.

Avocado and White Bean
Of course, sans red onion ... onions are ewww.

Eggplant Parmesan with Goat Cheese
Dying to try this baby.

Feta and Sun-Dried Tomato Pita
I don't really like olive tapanade so I'll leave that out
but FETA and SUN-DRIED TOMATOES together!!!
Gotta have it.

Cheddar and Apple
What a great idea. I love apples and some good cheddar.

Tuesday, June 14

Thoughts on the Human Form

I sometimes dream about the perfect body;
Strong and supple,
Moving gracefully with a quiet beauty,
With a firmness, a steadiness.

It will last me a lifetime.
It will bear all sadness and pain
and enjoy all pleasures.
It will work hard until it's time to stop working.

Then it will lie down to rest.
The sunlight will drift in
And my body will dance away
To a new adventure.

Monday, June 13

Grumpy Gills

I started my period yesterday and it turned me into a mean monster.

Usually my time of the month comes and goes with nothing more than a slight disruptance in my love life. I tend to be tired and a generic cloud of ennui follows me around. But I have noticed that when I'm not eating much and exercising hard (like I am now), the hormonal changes seem to effect me more.

The morning started out with cramps but I managed to do my hour of cardio okay. Oh but wait -- mid-workout I had to make an emergency trip to the bathroom because I had begun menstruating which jumpstarted a day filled with things that annoyed me.
  • the movie theatre was cold
  • my husband kept getting up to pee during the movie -- a record THREE times
  • I didn't/shouldn't/couldn't get fries at In N Out
  • Target no longer carries the pet carpet cleaner I like
  • I was hungry all day
  • when we laid down to take a nap, the puppy kept making a throw up noise
  • which made me have to take the puppy outside but not before she threw up on the carpet
  • and I have no good pet carpet cleaner (see item four)
  • friends came over for the basketball finals ... enough said
  • friends brought over red wine which I don't like
  • on period and couldn't have sex
  • didn't sleep well; had a crick in my neck
And now it's morning. I'm at work. I'm feeling better. But man oh man. Yesterday was one of those days when I should have just quarantined myself away from all humans and read a book. I hated everything and everything pissed me off. Thank all the gods my husband is understanding and has a sense of humor. Before our nap he told the puppy: "you and mom have one thing in common: you're both bitches."

And I actually laughed a little before I rolled my eyes and kept being one.
Sometimes it's therapeutic to be a bitch.

Friday, June 10

Good News Everyone

I'm in!
I have been officially admitted to the Professional MBA program.
Here's to higher education and higher tuition.
Let's hope my hard work takes me to a job I love;
A job that pays in satisfaction and six digits.

Tuesday, June 7

Wind Sprints

Do this.
You'll love it.

Walk for two minutes.
Jog for a minute and a half.
Sprint for thirty seconds.
Repeat until you want to die.

And when I say sprint I mean RUN RUN RUN as fast as you can.

 Wind sprints are way more entertaining than running at a consistent pace for an hour and the sprint at the end of the cycle makes you feel young and fit -- well, until you're gasping for air and walking off the cramp in your side. My 'walk' speed is 3.0 MPH, 5.0 MPH for the jog, and 7.0 for the sprint. But next time I think I'll push my sprint up to 7.5 MPH until I start to get tired. As I near the end of my session, it takes a LOT of energy to keep my legs moving at that pace and keep from falling flat on my ass. Treadmill burn is not comfortable. Wind sprints have been a welcome addition to my cardio training: a day of stairs, a day of climber, and now wind sprints!

Friday, June 3

MBA Application


Well, nearly done. I have completed everything; essay, resume, GMAT, application. All I need to do is enter my GMAT scores (sitting on the table at home) and then press 'submit.' I'm praying to all my gods that it's not too late for me to be accepted this fall. Curse my procrastination. The element that really slowed me down was the resume and essay. My resume was hard because it's all postal crap so it's difficult to explain to an outsider. And the essay was hard because I hate essays of that nature. "Explain your motivation for entering the program" and blah blah blah. Who cares? Shouldn't that be something you ask me in the interview? I think so. Plus, I have a tendency to either wax sarcastic or start to tell an all too personal narrative ... like this:

My desire to enter the MBA program is because I feel trapped by my job. The money is good but the work tends to be uninteresting to myself and to other people. I tried to get away a few years ago by going to China but that didn't work out so well and after a short month I ended right back where I was but sans car and dignity. What I really want to do is be a professional writer and make a living that way but in order to have the means to write a lot I need lots of money so I guess I'll get an MBA in hopes that I can make more money and have a more interesting job. I mean, let's be honest; I should work somewhere at something that is just as interesting as I am. And my best asset for management is my political aplomb (i.e., people like me). Rock on.

I wonder how an essay like that would be received by the review board.

Thursday, June 2

Truth No. 2

"Sing me something brave from your mouth
And I'll bring you pearls of water on my hips
And the love in my lips, all the love from my lips"
 -- DCX

Wednesday, June 1

June 1st

Today is June 1st. Let's play catch up.

-- I am filling in for a manager for the rest of the summer, which means I now have my own office. With a window. I had to train my replacement during the last couple weeks in May which is why I didn't write. Also, work was super busy. We just entered into a new contract which brought on many many changes and many many questions about how we would adapt. It's exciting but also scary (lots of downsizing) which makes me glad that I'm getting my MBA.

-- I took the GMAT on May 21st. My score was 570. I'll take it. The average score of the last Professional MBA class was 580 so I think I'm in. I just need to submit my essay and resume (which I should be working on now but instead I'm here). I totally sucked up the quantative section, sucked meaning in the 23rd percentile. Ouch. But my verbal section was pretty damn good: 87th percentile. And my writing received a perfect score: a 6. Mostly I'm just glad it's over and hopefully I'll never have to take it again. If all goes according to plan, I'll start school this fall.

-- I had to fix up the yard for a luncheon. I had my work ladies over for lunch out on the patio but before anyone could see my semi-scary backyard we had to mow and edge and fix up the flower beds and de-weed the patio. Plus, it's been raining here like mad and the grass was like a jungle. The puppy would disappear and make tracks through the long grass, like a safari evertime she went potty. The luncheon was so lovely. The weather was nice, a bit windy, but the food was great and I love my dear ladies.

-- It's time to renew our lease at the little cottage. I can't believe we've been there for a year. It has been so lovely to live downtown and close to work. The house is just right for the three of us and when I start school it will be convience itself. Of course, getting ready for our landlady to walk through has been a pain in the ass. Not that our house is a pig pen; we just want it to look spic and span so she know how fabulous we are. Tom had to patch a couple holes in the wall and I need to clean all the windowsills. Luckily the yard is already taken care of.

-- And finally, we caught the mouse. It took a week. He was very smart. After the snappy "humane" traps failed to produce results, we switched to the sticky traps. We placed four at random places in the kitchen and the first night we caught a big ugly centipede. Every night we'd hear the mouse clanging around -- probably scavenging for food -- but I guess he tiptoed around all the traps. Finally, we woke up to a loud high-pitched yelp. The poor thing had its body and tail stuck to the trap, all but his head. I put the stuck mousey into a plastic bag and Tom took it outside to chuck it in the garbage ... but only after smacking it against the ground a couple times to make sure it was dead. Needless to say, my husband never wants to use sticky traps again and I'm overjoyed that our guest is gone.