Monday, July 30, 2007

Weekend highlights

I weighed in at Weight Watchers that morning and was ecstatic to learn I was down 3 lbs. It was my biggest one-week loss ever.

Brent was at Comic-Con until Saturday morning, so I was on my own that night. Most of my girlfriends were busy, so I just chilled at home. Unfortunately a 2-hour nap and an accidental dosage of caffeine (I realized too late that Sobe Energy actually gives you energy) kept me up till 2 a.m.

I hit the gym that morning in preparation for delicious food at a wedding that evening.

Brent came home from San Diego and we got all dolled up for the wedding of our friends Trish and Spyro. The ceremony was held at Saint Sophia, a stunning Greek church.

Stunning church

The reception was held at the wonderful Ritz Huntington in Pasadena, which we were especially excited for as that's where we spent our wedding night. We had an amazing time celebrating their big day. They put so much thought into all the little details and made for a gorgeous event. And the couple just radiated love. We were honored to be a part of it!

Most of the pics I took turned out dark, but here are a couple. (Click to enlarge.)

During the cocktail hour. Every time Brent puts on this suit, which he wore on our wedding day, I fall in love with him all over.

Cocktail hour

This is the wonderful group of gals I've had the honor of becoming close with over the past year.


Congrats again, Trish and Spyro!

WeeMo did a fabulous recap with lots of awesome pics here.

I woke up miserable, thinking my allergies were bothering me. I tried to just suck it up (not literally...ew...) and ventured out for lunch and some shopping with Brent.

That afternoon I saw Hairspray with South African Ballerina Jen, which I enjoyed but I think I liked the original movie better. The musical numbers were good and I thought that Nikki Blonsky, who played Tracy Turnblad, was cute as a button.

Last night I realized that the allergies that were bothering me all day was in fact a cold. I haven't been sick in a while and have even made it through a couple rounds of summer colds that infected my co-workers, but apparently it's my turn. Ugh. I'm home today, watching way too much cheeseball reality tv and vegging on the couch.

"When I say we've had an ideal marriage, I'm not just talking about physical attraction, which I can imagine can wear pretty thin if it's all a couple has built on. We've had that and a whole lot more. " - Betty Ford

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Hellooooooo nurse

I just replaced this adorable picture of my nephew on my computer desktop:

My nephew's grin

With this:
And now I need to call our IT people to fix my computer because apparently too much saliva will short circuit a monitor. Who knew?

"I got half a smile and zero shame. I got a reflection with a different name. Got brand new blues I can't explain. Who did you think I was?" - Who Did You Think I Was, John Mayer

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Uncivilized we call him, but I just saw him eat off the food we waste

Tonight was my now-weekly mega workout - an hour of spinning, 15 minutes of abs and stretching, ending with an hour of hip-hop. Tiring but oh-so-fun.

After gymming, I swung by my nearby El Pollo Loco to pick up some food. As I approached the door, a homeless man in his late 20s, sitting outside, asked if I could spare any change. He was about to eat a taco that I'm guessing someone gave him on their way out. I asked if I could instead buy him something more to eat. His reply? "The only thing I like in there is the chicken burrito." Now, that didn't strike me as strange until I stood there, waiting for my order. Isn't the old sayin' "Beggars can't be choosers"? And maybe he should consider a different begging spot, perhaps outside of an eatery that he likes. I'm just sayin'.

Despite his pickyness, I gave him the burrito... and $5.

That's not always possible for me to do because the beach town I live in is a mecca for homeless folks. If I gave $5 or even $1 to every homeless person who asked me for it, I'd end up homeless with them. When I can, though, I open my wallet a little wider and help someone out. It won't get them off the street, but I hope it makes one day a little more bearable.

"Here, have a dollar. In fact, no brotherman, here, have two. Two dollars means a snack for me, but it means a big deal to you." - Mr. Wendal, Arrested Development

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Weekend rewind: BBQ style

My friends Tori, Bree and I went to the Hollywood Bowl to see the LA Philharmonic featuring Jamie Cullum. We had a lot of fun, despite the family in front of us who decided to lay all over each other and pseudo nap instead of actually watch the show. Jamie's portion was way too short for me, but his five-song set packed a powerful punch. He's one of the most entertaining performers I've had the pleasure of seeing. I can hardly wait for him to hurry up, do a new album and hit the road again!

Brent and I woke up early and faced the mad house known as Costco. Something about that place during the weekend makes me want to punch people. It's like all sense of decorum is gone, between battling for parking spots and using proper shopping cart etiquette. People just don't get it.

We battled Costco's crazy customers and bought the remaining supplies needed for our joint birthday BBQ. Brent and I are only a few weeks apart, so we celebrated this year with a party between both of our big days.

We spent the first half of the day getting ready for the shindig - hosted at my in-laws' - moving furniture around and prepping food and drinks. And, as luck would have it, of course, the sun beat down on us all day until about a half hour before our guests arrived, when a thick layer of clouds decided to block out the sun. It made for a nice, enjoyable temperature, but I would have liked a little bit of sunshine. Oh well.

Once the guests arrived, I enjoyed watching our circles of friends collide. At one point we had to drag Brent's parents out from their bedroom (they didn't want to intrude) to get them to mingle. And as I've mentioned here previously, I love my in-laws. They're friendly and gracious and just all around lots of fun. My friends always get along with them so well, and last night was no different. They made the rounds and enjoyed getting to know all our friends.

Some of our guests included some of my blogger buddies: justJENN, Jodi, Hil, Randi and Mike. Jenn showed up with her world-famous Watermelon Bomb, which is a really fun ice cream treat that looks like a watermelon. There were lots of oooohs and aaaaaahs when she cut it open to accompany our cake.

Along with the ice cream, some friends brought us other unnecessary-but-oh-so-thoughtful gifts of wine, flowers and other fun things (cupcake cookbooks that I didn't already have but had been drooling over, Hello Kitty goodies, make-up bag, photo album, a mix CD, a comic book, a gift certificate to a hot new restaurant in Culver City that we've been wanting to try called Fraiche, among others).

About an hour before the party ended, I realized that I hadn't really had anything to drink. I wanted to try some of the wine that our guests brought, so I poured myself a cup of red. Drank that. Then poured myself another. Drank that. As I poured myself half a third cup, I said, "I think I like wine." Then realized I had gotten myself very buzzed in a very short amount of time. I thought I'd learn to love wine in Italy, but apparently my lesson was last night.

The only unpleasantness from the evening came when I was attacked by mosquitoes. As the party wound down, I found my ankles itching a bit. I woke up this morning and discovered that I had 11 bites! And I know at least one guest suffered a similar fate. I'm sorry, party people, for making you the entree in a feast of mosquitoes. There usually isn't an issue with mosquitoes there. If I had known, I would have covered everyone in Skin So Soft or citronella. Brent came out unscathed, but apparently I have very sweet blood. And I also have bad reactions to mosquito bites, so I'm having to be mindful not to scratch.

After the guests dispersed and we cleaned up, Brent and I took our very tired selves home only to be greeted at the end of our block by a cop car that wouldn't let us by. Apparently they closed off the block because they were searching for a "shooter." I replied, "But we live here." His response? "Would you like to go in and find him?" Good point. So we waited about 20 minutes, when they either found the shooter or gave up. I hope it's the former. The cop drove away before we could ask.

This morning we slept until about 11:30 (didn't get to bed until 1). I took Brent to high tea at Jin Patisserie, where we sipped tea, nibbled on scones and various sweet treats while enjoying the lovely So Cal weather.

We swung by my in-laws to pick up the leftover wine (hee, hee), chips, dip, potato salad, chicken and cake. My mother-in-law made enough for 70 people, even though we had about 30, so we plenty o' leftovers. I'm going to take a bunch of stuff in to work for my co-workers tomorrow, including the cake. I should scratch out the "Birthday" part and replace it with "Monday" instead. Happy Monday, everyone!

"The last mosquito that bit me had to book into the Betty Ford Clinic." - Patsy, Absolutely Fabulous

Thursday, July 19, 2007

She rocks in the tree top, all day long

What has two thumbs and can now fit into quite a bit of clothing that had previously been too small?
*This gal!*
It's like going shopping for free clothes that I already know I like!

What has two thumbs and was bestowed the title of a "Rockin' Girl Blogger" by Sara at This is the Story of a Girl? *This blogger!*

This is what Sara said about me: Nannette is a trip. She is so laid back and always has a cool story or picture of yummy food to share. She recently celebrated her 1st anniversary and has been a great resource for my wedding planning! I love her weekend recaps - they always sound so fun!

Heh, heh. I guess I am a bit of a trip. I'm laid back yet hyper at the same time - I'm not sure exactly how I do that, but it's worked for me so far.

So now I'm supposed to call out five rockin' girl bloggers. This was so tough because I feel like all the gal bloggers I read are rockin'. And because so many of my circles of bloggers are incestuous (aka we all know each other outside of blogging or have been each other's blog fans for years and years), I'm going to try to share the love here and not nominate more than one from each blog circle. (Who said there wasn't politics involved in blogging?)

- 2054 Miles - Shelby is my best friend. Shelby and I have known each other since we were 6. Shelby moved to Iowa with her new husband recently. Shelby's move made me sad. Shelby and I try to talk at least once a week. Shelby started a blog, which makes me happy. Shelby is a great blogger and shares adventures of living in a new state in a new house with a new husband and lots of new paint colors. Shelby rocks.
- justJENN - She's the epitome of rockin' girl blogger. She's an amazing cook, an amazing mom and an amazing friend. She also produces some of the world's cutest offspring. Jenn and I are going to start a band (name to be determined) and have a Hello Kitty tour bus.
- Inevitably Keely - I dare you to look at her blog, see those pictures of her adorable daughter, Zoe, and not feel a twinge in your ovaries. Go look... I told you! Keely is a sweetheart and her warmth radiates from her posts. One of this days she and I are going to meet in person as I drive through her town to visit my family. And I'm sure when we do, it'll be like we've known each other forever.
- SuperJux - Hil is a great person. She has a lot of fun and lemme tell ya - she can bake like nobody's business! I think her blog was the first LA-area blog I ever read. That was years ago and I haven't missed a post of hers since.
- More Fun Than a Barrel - WeezerMonkey (WeeMo, if you're nasty) is part of a group of some of my best friends dubbed The SFAM (sister from another mister, if you will). Some day I'll provide the back story of how we all met, but that's an entirely different post all together. While there are quite a number of the SFAMily who are recent bloggers, I'm calling out WeeMo because that bitch (hee, hee) already gets a ton o' comments, which speaks to how much she rocks! She's spunky and attracts the crazies other wacky gals (myself included).

So now each of the five above can pay it forward and give the title to five other rockin' gal bloggers. Rock on!

"Until you've lost your reputation, you never realize what a burden it was." - Margaret Mitchell

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Happiness is...

- Kick-ass seats for the upcoming Maroon 5 concert. We're talking probably in the first five rows via my legacy fan club membership. November can't come soon enough!

- Awesome seats at this Friday's Jamie Cullum show at the Hollywood Bowl. He was probably my favorite concert of last year, and this time he has a full orchestra behind him! Sweet!!!

- Our upcoming birthday BBQ. Brent and I are celebrating our birthdays together with a party at his parents'. We're finalizing the menu now, and I'm looking forward to hanging out with lots of our favorite people!

- Beautiful Southern California weather. It's been gorgeous lately -- not too hot, not too overcast. Perfect for our BBQ.

"I sang in the a cappella group, Here Comes Treble." - Andy, The Office

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Weekend recap

This was quite a weekend, lemme tell ya.

After work I made a really quick trip to Old Navy in the hopes of finding something cute to wear to that evening's festivities. It was one of those rare occurrences when almost everything I grabbed to try on actually looked good. Best of all, it was Old Navy so I was able to score a bunch without spending too much. I made out like a bandit with 4, yes FOUR, dresses! (One is obviously not pictured. It was on clearance - woo hoo! - but not available online.)
I am so loving that dresses are so in style these days. Dresses like the ones above can be dressed up, dressed down and best of all - they're comfortable!

I made a very quick trip to the new, dangerously nearby Vanilla Bakeshop. I bought a bunch of their baby cupcakes for maximum variety. I had been forewarned about the state of the cupcakes after transport, but was still surprised to see them in such disarray after I got home. And mind you, I live just a few minutes away. (A favorite food blogger had the similar issues, as you can see here.) They attached the cupcakes to the box with a dot of frosting, but it didn't really hold up. Despite looking a mess (frosting all squished, flavors colliding), all the flavors were quite good. Over the weekend I tasted chocolate peanut butter, banana chocolate chip (second favorite), Mom's birthday cake (probably my fav), old fashioned, and chocolate vanilla bean. I'd definitely recommend them, especially if you're in the area, but you're probably better off eating as many of them there as you can, or bringing someone to watch them carefully the entire way home.

That evening I drove brides-to-be Trish and dapotato to meet up with a bunch of other fabulous friends for their bachelorette party. I think we may have passed Fergie driving in a convertible on our way there. We started with dinner at Loggia at The Highlands, with delicious/hilarious favors created by R.

They were chocolate with vanilla filling. I kid you not! Hey, R - I just realized that you *might* be able to recycle those cake pans by baking some goodies for a cycling club. They kinda look like bicycle seats, right? Eh, it's a stretch, I know, especially since you're not in a cycling club. ;)

After dinner we were escorted down to the attached nightclub, where we attended a very special show called Hollywood Men. I've never been to a strip club, but it's not something I'll soon forget. We hooted, hollered and mostly laughed as we watched male strippers in skits, portraying cowboys, firemen, cops, fighter pilots a la Top Gun, and strangely - vampires.

I spent a lot of the night like this:

After their skits, the men came out for some one-on-one bumping and grinding. I, happily, was not a recipient of a lap dance, but we made sure to keep our bachelorettes dripping with dollar bills for plenty of dancing.
(Bride-to-be faces have been hidden to protect the innocent... or guilty.)

We hung out a bit longer after the show turned into a night club. It was nice to go out dancing with the gals because that's not something I do very often even though I enjoy it. I'm too old to hang out in most clubs these days.

Brent and I slept in late and then lounged by Brent's parents' pool. It was a gorgeous day in sunny Southern California.

We met Josh, Jami and some other friends of theirs for dinner at a Persian restaurant. I wasn't a big fan the first time we tried it, but this time was a lot better. Then we headed over to the new Landmark Theater to see Rescue Dawn. Brent and I had no problems the other two times we had been there, but for some reason their ticket system was screwy and didn't give us assigned seats when Jami ordered the tix via phone. We couldn't get seats together, even just in pairs for each couple, and ended up having to swap them out for another movie. (*Tear* no Christian Bale for me.) The theater was very apologetic and gave each of the six of us two tickets for free movies, so they redeemed themselves a bit. We ended up seeing Interview, which turned out to be pretty dreadful. I don't know if I'd watch this if it were playing for free on cable. It started out ok but got boring quickly. Two of the six of us fell asleep.

We had brunch at Rose Cafe. It was delicious (tofu scramble...mmm...). Then we did a little shopping. We came home, I napped and then we dragged ourselves to the gym.

Michael: Stripper? Could I ask you a question? About women? Um … should I tell my girlfriend that you danced up on me?
Elizabeth: Secret secrets are no fun. Secret secrets hurt someone.
Michael: Wow. Thank you.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Is it just me?

...or is anyone else having problem posting comments on Blogger? Seems like one out of every two blogs won't let me comment. The little comment screen just repeatedly loads without every stopping to allow me to enter in my comment. And it's not the same blogs. I can comment one day on one, but the next time it won't let me.

So if I haven't commented on your site in a while, that could be why. I promise that I am reading!

"And I can't tell you just what's keeping me down. Something's missing and I don't know how to fix it. Something's missing and I don't know what it is, no I don't know what it is. I don't." - John Mayer, Something's Missing

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Darlin', do not fear what you don't really know

4: number of times I was sang "Happy Birthday" to, including my husband (first thing in the morning – awwww), my best friend's mom (also very cute), my co-workers, and my mother-in-law
5: number of thoughtful ecards I received
50+: number of blog comments, emails and MySpace comments I received, wishing me a great day
3: number of text messages and voicemails I received on my phone with birthday wishes
0: number of my times my mom called to wish me a happy birthday. She's so busted! ;) It's ok, though, because I think she's in denial of having a 30-year-old daughter. She is only 50. And she called me first thing this morning.
3: number of cheeses that were on the delicious grilled cheese I ate at the new grilled-cheese-speciality restaurant, MeltDown. Loved it!
1: pieces of chocolate/raspberry cake I ate, given to me by my co-workers
6: pieces of chocolate/raspberry cake I could have eaten easily

They say it's my birthday

8: number of times I mmmm'd about the amazing spinach/ricotta gnocchi I ordered at Angeli. I highly recommend my So Cal readers check the restaurant out if you're ever around Melrose. (Reservations are suggested, although the atmosphere is quite casual.) The food is phenomenal and very inexpensive for what you get.
1: number of expensive bags I now own. Brent gave me this AWESOME gift! And he even polled the store's customers to help him choose between prints. He's the best husband ever.

1: how many awesome concerts I saw last night.
15: number of times I had to explain who I was seeing. "What are you doing to celebrate tonight, Nanette?" "Going to a concert." (not telling them who because I'm sure they've never heard of him) "Who?" "Brett Dennen" (blank look) I continue, "He's a 20-something singer/songwriter boy with a guitar." (blank look) I continue, "He sounds like Paul Simon." "Oooh, I like Paul Simon!"
20: number of times I cursed myself for wearing the wrong shoes. I never wear heels to a concert. I guess I'm getting forgetful in my old age.
10: minutes it took for me to fall asleep after my head hit the pillow.
Infinite: how much I appreciate all my friends, family and co-workers for making my day so memorable. I'm not scared of the 30s. This is going to be a great year, I just know it.

"Alongside my innocence I laid in bed awake, conflicted in these chains with the impetus of age. But like a phantom she crept across the floor and out the window. Darlin' do not fear what you don't really know." - Brett Dennen, Darlin' do not fear what you don't really know

Monday, July 09, 2007

Ninja warrior

Today I came home to find this little guy waiting for me:

It's a teeny tiny ninja! It's about 5 inches high, featuring a ninja belt and a throwing star - so watch out! The teeny tiny ninja is a lovely birthday gift from my bestie Shelby! Having known each other for almost 25 years she knows exactly what I'd love. I'm taking it to work to be part of my ninja clan that keeps me in line.

I'm a little shocked that in about an hour I'll officially be 30. And even though I'm working tomorrow, I still have a fabulous day of celebration planned. More details to come, of course.

"Well these days I wish I was 6 again. Oh make me a red cape. I wanna be Superman." - John Mayer, 83

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Weekend rewind

(For some reason Blogger won't let me title this post. Hmm...) Fixed!

Friday night we saw Ratatouille, which I'd heard glowing reviews of. (Rotten Tomatoes, which culls reviews from critics, determined 96% of the reviews were positive, which is pretty freakin' awesome and rare.) The movie tells the story of a rat who wants nothing more than to be a chef. He accidentally partners up with a kitchen-garbage-boy-accidentally-turned chef. Hilarity ensues. The movie was cute and endearing, even for a story about a rodent. It appeals to anyone who enjoys food and encourages everyone to really enjoy their food, the art of cooking and accepting those who don't fit our mold of "normal." I highly recommend it.

Before the movie we picked up some snacks from nearby Famima, a Japanese convenience store. I decided on a LaraBar, specifically the Cherry Pie flavor (not a Japanese product).

I hadn't had one before, but it seemed like a healthy option as its only three ingredients are cherries, dates and almonds. It's a good source of fiber, gluten free, dairy free and soy free and you get 1 serving of fruit from this bar. Sadly it's 190 calories (4 points, you WW ladies). I'll consider this a once-in-a-while treat, but it's so good that I'd eat one a day, if I could.

Saturday morning Brent and I attended a yoga class. We were both long overdue to get stretched out a bit. And now we're both happily sore.

We watched a lot of Live Earth. One of my favorite performances was Spinal Tap's, specifically when they brought out all the bass players of the other bands. I also enjoyed John Mayer (both during his solo and his performance with The Police), Dave Matthews and Bon Jovi.

Then Brent and I caught some live music. Sara Bareilles had her CD release party/performance at the Hotel Cafe. Her first album supported by a major label was released on Tuesday and it's doing swimmingly (#2 on iTunes right now). The show was sold out and the place was packed (and what the hell is it with that venue and no freakin' AC? Ugh!). Her set was short, but great, as always. I'm excited to watch her continued success and hopefully it won't be too hard to see her as her popularity grows. Can I get a "Hey! I've been a fan for YEARS!" pass? A highlight of the night was meeting Nicole! We're actually connected via real-life friends Josh and Jami, which made it even more exciting to finally meet.

This morning Brent and I dragged ourselves to the gym, where I kicked my own ass. Seriously, I sweat through two layers of clothing via an extended run and time on a stairmill. It was disgustingly awesome.

And now I'm pooped.

"Baby don't you cry, gonna make a pie, gonna make a pie with a heart in the middle. Baby don't be blue, gonna make for you, gonna make a pie with a heart in the middle." - Jenna, Waitress

Thursday, July 05, 2007

I'm a dork because...

...this video cracks me up.

...I almost made cookies tonight just to try out this birthday present that just arrived. (Not me in the picture, sadly. She's hot.)
...I think these would be so much fun, especially at the gym.

...I can't stop singing this song. (Warning: The video is lame.)

...I love these reusable grocery bags that Hilary recommended. We've used them twice and each time the checkers have commented how cool they are. I'm happy to not waste plastic bags, especially because they seem to make up so much of the litter on the freeway. In a span of 30 seconds I counted at least 5 of them tangled in the freeway brush. So sad. (There are also more girlie versions of the reusable bags, which is what Hil ordered. I got the gender-neutral ones so Brent wouldn't feel girlie carrying them.)

...I actually look forward to exercising, such as the spinning class I took tonight. As strange as it sounds, I enjoy sweating (under appropriate circumstances, not at other random times).

...I can't believe I forgot to mention in my last post how much I loved the Transformers cartoons growing up, even more than playing with the toys. ::slapping forehead:: Duh!

...I'd like to be best friends with Mindy Kaling. And she wants to be best friends with Katherine Heigl, so then I'd be friends with Katherine Heigl by association. Mmm hmm.

"What a coincidence because the dork police called and said they want their leader back." Joan, Joan of Arcadia

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

More holiday than meets the eye

This feels like it should be my regular weekend recap, but, ya know, it's technically not a weekend. I'm going to be so screwed up for the rest of this week.

Anyhow, I was thrilled when I discovered that the Transformers movie was really released yesterday, not on July 4th as the posters led everyone to believe. I got tix for one of last night's shows. I was so excited about this movie for two reasons. 1) Although the toys are geared toward boys, I was quick to grab my brother's Transformers when they were all the rage in the 80s. While I was never as proficient at he was in transforming them from cars/bugs/dinosaurs to robots, I still had a blast playing with them. 2) The marketing for the film was perfect. All Hollywood movies - especially those featuring such iconic characters - should take a lesson from Transformers. The initial teaser trailers were enticing and the fuller, more recent trailers gave very little away about the movie. I hate watching most trailers these days because they tend to give away the whole freakin' plot line. Yes, movies are so formulaic that it's not hard to figure out that the good guy will win, the girl will get the guy and the animal may die but it'll teach the child a valuable life lesson. But I still hate that more often than not, Brent and I turn to each other after a trailer to say, "Well, we don't need to see that. They just showed us the entire thing." I digress.

Jodi, who was lucky enough to attend the premiere, prepared me for the long length of the film - nearly 2 and a half hours - but it didn't feel too long to me. I don't know if there's such a thing as too much of autobots in disguise. I really enjoyed the film. And I thought Shia LaBeouf was great. There were parts where I gasped, laughed and possibly could have shed a tear. There were also times where I wanted to punch the guy in the second row who had to applaud every time something remotely cool happened. I'm a fan, but I'm not a fanatic. Ass hat.

This morning Brent ran a 10k in nearby Pacific Palisades. Watching him (great job, honey!) and others cross the finish line, I was inspired enough to promise Brent and myself to run the 5k version of the race next year. Baby runner steps.

While he ran, I read Anthony Bourdain's Kitchen Confidential. I know, I know. I'm probably the only person in the world who hasn't read that yet... or the DaVinci Code. Or Harry Potter. I'm digging Kitchen Confidential and I'm sad they cancelled the Fox sitcom based on the book a couple of years ago, but it's taking me forever to read because the internet has stolen my reading attention span. It takes effort for me to make it through a magazine these days. Sad, but true.

This afternoon we attended a lovely BBQ hosted by The Daily Randi and her beau. They live just around the corner from us in a really cute apartment, and they're fabulous hosts. We enjoyed the company, including my long-time blogger buddy Hilary. I can't believe it took me this long to try her baked goods! Check these bad boys out! They tasted as awesome as they looked! (And a shout out to Hil's sis, Bethany. Apparently she's a lurking fan of my blog.)

We continued our BBQ tour and swung by Josh and Jami's, who are also fabulous hosts. We got to chill with their adorable kids (can't remember the last time I played Duck, Duck, Goose or Red Light/Green Light, which also now features a Yellow Light, I'll have you know), and enjoyed the delightful company of Josh's parents.

Hope everyone had a delightful 4th! (Next year's 4th falls on a Friday, by the way. Woo hoo!)

"The only thing bad about a holiday is it is followed by a non-holiday." - Anonymous

Monday, July 02, 2007

Double your pleasure

Two blog posts in one night? I know! Go on wit' your bad self!

At about 7 p.m. I realized that tonight was the night I had planned to bake some 4th of July-themed cupcakes for my co-workers. And I was determined to go all out and do them by scratch instead of taking the easy route with a box cake mix and homemade frosting.

I chose a red/white/blue recipe from Crazy About Cupcakes, although mine turned out more like pastel pink/white/baby blue cupcakes. I made cream cheese frosting and topped them with some pre-made July 4th candy. I was hoping to top them with Pop Rocks, but I couldn't find any in time.

The recipe was smaller than I thought (only 12) so Brent and I split one. (A baker has to taste her own goods.) Luckily half the office is out on vacation this week, so 12 should be plenty.

Before the frosting. You can see a bit of red poking out. It's mostly on the bottom of the cupcakes, I swear.
A little bit of red

All decorated
Topped off

See! There IS red inside!
See! I'm not lying!

"That's a shame, being that it's the 4th of July and all. Kids like you should be out having fun. Drinking, partying, running over people, getting away with murder, things like that." - Ben Willis, I Know What You Did Last Summer

Weekend in review

It was so hot last night that I couldn't bring myself to do my weekend recap, so here goes (as I sit with a fan pointing at me).

Friday night I was craving some authentic ramen (as opposed to ramen a la cup o' noodles) so we went to our favorite ramen place. With bellies full of expanding noodles we skipped Pinkberry yogurt, as I had originally wanted, but did pick up some mochi filled with sweet red bean. Oh, my. Delicious!

Saturday we lazed around the house, complaining about the heat, complaining that we were bored, so we took a field trip to a grocery store. Yup, you read that correctly - a field trip. To a grocery store. (Or as Brent and his family like to say, "the market.") But my dear blog readers, not just any grocery store. A GIGANTIC Whole Foods! I'd heard that it was huge and that it had an unbelievable amount of prepared foods sections, but we had to see it to believe it. And we believe it. Check out this press release for a list of everything it has to offer. You can go to the meat counter, choose some meat, have them grill it and bring it to you in the store's wine lounge. Brent and I were overwhelmed by the choices, so we left with only some Brussels sprouts (Brent's fav, not mine) and some dried Japanese pumpkin... mmm... Maybe I'll head back to stock up for our birthday BBQ later this month.

That evening we had dinner at Tender Greens, where I had the best chicken ever. So moist and tasty. If you live in the area and haven't been, go!

We had planned to check out fireworks on the 4th at the nearby community college, but it turns out that they had their big display on Saturday night. We discovered that as we heard the big kabooms. We were able to catch part of it, but we were kinda bummed to have missed most of it.

Sunday we hit the gym and then lounged by my in-laws' pool. Then we had dinner with Brent's parents.

It was a relatively lazy weekend, which was perfectly fine with me.

"Why don't you go down to the grocery store and sit in the dairy section? That way everyone will know YOU are the head cheese!" - The Licker, Townies