Friday, December 31, 2010

i love liz lemon

"what is wrong with you? that guy wanted to buy you a drink!"
"really? but i already have a drink. you think he'd buy me mozzarella sticks?"

if you're not watching 30 rock, you should make it your new year's resolution.

- mobile blog post

so this happened

Matt's sister was in town and they came to our house, since Angie's already here I had Liz bring Lyla and ta-da a picture with all four of my nieces.
Our house was FULL yesterday. I made lunch for the grandparents, the Fredrichs, the Carrs, and Milena, who dropped by while I was making lunch, perfect timing for her. I'd made tomato soup the night before and woke up with the thought that well if I am making tomato soup I best make some grilled cheese sandwiches. And since I already had pomegranate seeds I thought well I just need some arugula, parmesan, and I'll make dressing for a salad. It went over well. Grandma said the tomato soup was better than Panera's which I took as a big compliment. Then the family kept coming and coming. Luckily for dinner Dan and Jason picked up Panda Express. We had so many people around the table I had to add the small square one too, there was about 14 of us.

It was a good but tiring day.

Hope you all have a safe and happy new year. Matt & I are staying home, alone. It's only fitting.

Thursday, December 30, 2010


Have I ever mentioned how much I love the movie "The Royal Tenenbaums"? It's number three in my top five favorite movies of all time. Right after "While You Were Sleeping" and "Indiana Jones & the Last Crusade". It was one of the 8 movies Matt and I both owned before we did the big DVD combine of '07 before we got married. Gulp that was scary, now it's no big deal. Anyway, check this business:
Trying to talk Matt into letting me buy it. It's limited edition! I think I'll put it in the hallway with the other prints of houses. Gee I'm thematic. And cinematic.

"Is that a tic-tac?"

"Oh no, that's dog blood"

"I'm not colorblind am I?"

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

what to do with a week off?

Organize. Obviously. I spent a few hours returning my office back to order after much gift wrapping and guests staying over. And of course I had to add my latest pillow acquisition to the couch full of pillows and cats laying on them.
 It's Betty and they love her.
I also have to find places to stick the sets of 12 everything left over from my Christmas party. Matt's gonna let me buy that big cabinet for my birthday so I can store things there but that won't be for a few more weeks so until then, I'll be reorganizing the cupboards.

Which obviously, is a lot of fun for me. Ho Ho Ho.

ay ese cuarto

Next year dangit, that's the year our bedroom goes from dorm room at Hart Hall to a room where grown ups sleep and read comic books.

Nicole at Making it Lovely has it has a lot of the elements in her room that are things I want in mine like matching nightstands, matching table lamps, a bookcase, some sort of ceiling light, and my current favorite upholstered beauty: the Hoffman bed from Room & Board.
The element that's new to the room is a low and large dresser. We have tall ones right now because we were lacking of space in our apartment but we can go bigger now so I am into this style. It has to be about 6 roomy drawers or more because Matt needs four drawers for his stuff and I need one for my PJs. Is it just me or does that chair next to it look awesome?I even dig the minimal styling.
I still want to keep a large bookcase. Originally I wanted to get two of them to flank the dresser but now I might stick it off to the side but still visible from the bed. Of the many elements I've tossed around for the bedroom I will not bend on wanting this bookcase in this color. It has to be in the room. Has to. Period.
Over the dresser I don't want a mirror because we have two big ass closets (praise the Lord) and they have big ass mirrors. But I do want some sort of large artwork of sorts so methinks these shiny elements are just the ticket. They're almost mirror like but you can't see yourself in them. Bonus!
Even though I really don't want the bedroom to be all matchy matchy I mean, that's the reason why I want to change everything to begin with in the room but for some freaking reason I want to keep the dresser somewhat matching with the nightstands. Similar tones or similar wood or similar color. Either that or make them polar opposites.
And I still want these freaking sheets. I should just buy them because if they go away I will be so sad that I didn't jump on them when I had the chance. What am I waiting for anyway? Luckily I like the plain white comforter I have and the coverlet thing so bedding ain't the major problem in our room.
Want to know one of the major problems in the room? The freaking windows. What the heck do I put there?! I want them to block out lots of light but still look nice and airy. Right now we have just giant navy curtain panels that work fine but I want something more substantial. But what color? What fabric? I hate window scenarios. Maybe I should get some dark roller shades and then just use drapes for aesthetic but the problem is I can put roller shades on a sliding glass door! The windows are huge guys, HUGE.

Anyway, you can see why it's taken me almost two years to decide what to do in there. And nothing's been purchased which is probably smart since I can't decide on something that I truly love. Much won't get done in there until most of next year too. Le sigh. Why is the master bedroom the hardest room to decorate?

Monday, December 27, 2010

christmas gifting

I was a good girl this year. I guess. Matt got me Ally Mc Beal Season 2. Matt's grandparents hooked the family up with cashmoney. Ally bought me Betty White: on a pillow. Matt's aunt got me a two tier serving platter. Matt's mom hooked me up with some cozy pjs I'm wearing right now and a vegan cookbook to complete my collection as well as these little beauties. Big pimpin. Sleepy head.
We hooked the family up with some good gifts too, everyone seemed genuine about liking their gift and started using them right away! Matt's mom wasted no time trying out the flip HD we got her and here's grandma enjoying Dan's gift from us, a putting mat.
My immediate family had a dinner the night of and a big ole gift exchange. We had so much fun. Dinner was delicious for being put together last minute (literally the day before I scrambled to think of food for us) and easy. On Thanksgiving we put our names in a hat and everyone drew a name and kept it hush hush. Matt and I got Mari & Gaudy. I got Mari a magazine subscription, and Matt picked a Gordon Ramsey cookbook for Gaudy. Though my cooking brother that loves Gordon Ramsey will probably use it too. And although the babies' names were not in the hat of course we spoiled the crap out of them. 
Both Lyla and Angie got the same baby walker thing from different tios. Lyla's too small for it but Angie was having fun pushing it around.
Angie also got this train thing from my mom that's high tech people. It comes with these blocks that has some special branding on the bottom that when you put it into the slot on the side of the train it speaks according to what's on the block. Like A is for Apple, etc. It's got this slot at the top that Angie loves sticking the blocks into. I swear it kept her entertained for like... minutes. But the freaking crap sings this obnoxious song and it lights up. I can hear the obnoxious song even when the train isn't on. Dammit I had forgotten the song now its in my head again. I hate you baby toys! This is my payback for giving Michelle that castle that lights up isn't it? 
Oh and auntie EvY violated her no matching clothes for babies policy in favor of matching PJs for the girls. But at least they were not ultra girly and had no santa, I think it was reindeer or a moose. 
The uncles took turns succumbing to our notions of oh how cute would a picture be of the uncles with the nieces in their matching PJs. Sorry guys.
And of course my kids got a gift and they were SUPER PSYCHED about it. They're catnip toys in the shape of sardines in a little sardine box. The dogs got squeeky toys.
I bought myself some Kate Spade. Don't get your hopes up critters, I just got a wall calendar and a little notebook. I took it as a sign that while doing my perusal of websites for things I can't afford, admit it, you do it too, ground shipping was free from Kate Spade and would arrive by Christmas. 
The calendar is adorable. It's themed with resolutions you plan to keep monthly and pretty colorful, which will be perfect in the office. 

My other gift from me to me will have to be returned because it turned out my mother in-law already bought it for my birthday in two months. Good thing I had the foresight to keep the tags on it just in case someone did buy it for me for Christmas. In my defense, if you see something at a great deal at Marshalls you gotta jump on it. But make sure Christmas and your birthday have passed, just in case.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

could not be happier

Made three meals on Christmas. Spent Christmas morning with Matt, Dan, Jill, Esther, and Angie. Spent Christmas lunch with Matt's Plank side of the family. Spent Christmas dinner at home with all of my siblings: Ab, Mari, Elizabeth, and Esther. Their significant others: Gaudy, Eddie, Jamar, and Ceaser. And the babies: Angie and Lyla. And my darling in-laws.

That evening in my house there was also two dogs, two cats, and one puppy (belonging to Liz).

The babies got a TON of presents.

I am beyond tired. And beyond euphpric. Merry Christmas world.

- mobile blog post

b&w christmas IV: overall

It was a pretty great party. All the obsessing and thinking about it and fussing, once the first guests arrived, a sense of resolve came over me. It's done, all the prep work, it's done, now enjoy yourself. And nothing got me down after that. Even I was surprised. At some point the blow torch ceased to work 'til Justin fixed it somehow and Am thought I'd panic but I just didn't have it in me to stress about anything, I was just happy to enjoy everyone. These imperfectly perfect people that have been a part of my life for the past decade, they made the party what it was. A joy.
Also, a California Dreams sing along, never hurt anybody.

Merry Christmas surf dudes.

Friday, December 24, 2010

b&w christmas IV: le menu

My old roomie was the true hero of the party, encouraging me to keep cooking the night before so the day of we wouldn't be cooking, we'd just be heating up. I would have made a few things and then finished day of but because of her and with her help we finished everything but a few things. What a relief!

She pretty much made the quiche, the madelines, the nuts, the creme brulee, and the green beans all by herself. We were both working in the kitchen and I was supervising/basically nodding my head and cleaning/making that complicated vegan quiche but Ambre really took on a lot and works really fast. I gave her props at the dinner table and she told me she doesn't like it when I do that because it's supposed to be me that gets the credit. What a gal. If I was insecure about my abilities for shizzle I'd need to be built up but I was fairly certain I could have made the stuff she was making and had done some of it before so I was fine with her doing the work and rightfully getting the credit. 
As the paragraph above indicates the menu was pretty phenomenal and ridiculous. Everything except the quiches came from hermajesty's book Barefoot in Paris. I was almost stupid enough to think I would make everything from Julia Child's Mastering The Art of French Cooking. HA! The food was more essence of French food than literal French food but they were easier so I am okay with that. Please excuse the lack of sparkly shoes in this picture, my feet were killing me.
Six courses. I didn't photograph them all.
1) H'ordeurves: cheese straws & rosemary cashews.
You can see the cheese straws in my hands in the first picture. They were homemade and not bought, pretty easy actually. And yes, we made a custom flavoring mix and specially roasted the cashews.
2) Soup Course: zucchini vichyssoise (potato leek soup). Next time, broth instead of stock. It was still good but you know, for the future.
3) Main Course: asparagus quiche, gluten-free/vegan brocolli quiche with green beans by Ambre and me & ratatouille courtesy of Mary. Which is tomatoes, zucchini, eggplant. Actually now that I think about it Mary's recipe came from Mastering. She's braver than me.
4) Salad Course: greens with champagne vinagrette and pomegranates for tradition. Everyone just got a little dish mainly to cleanse the palette.
5) Cheese Course: port salut, roquefort, chevre, brie, boule d'or mimolette (aged cheddar)
6) Dessert Course: creme brulee, madelines. Madelines were great, thank goodness my honey bought me a Madeline form. The creme brulee was an adventure. First off I bought and now own a blowtorch. Matt's aunt J gave me the hot tip. Earlier in the day Am and I decided to test it before we tried to do it with everyone present. Thank heavens we did. In order to work a blow torch needs butane which we did not have. Aunt J came to the rescue again, suggesting Smart & Final. Whew! The test one I did in the morning came out perfect and we learned you have to caramelize them while the brulee is still cold. Hermajesty said it's not as scary as it sounds and she's totally right. The scariest part for me is the refilling part and the knowing I have four cans of flammable liquid in my house. We let everyone take a crack at blow torching their own brulee. The boys were really into the idea. My theory is that all boys are pyromaniacs and they just can't wait to play with fire. I observe this every Fourth of July. Of course there were a few ladies that braved the torch...
And of course there was a plenty of booze and beverages. Veuve Cliquot. French Soda. Le Jaja de Jau: red and white. Perrier. And the signature cocktail French 75: champagne, gin, lemon juice, simple syrup served in champagne coupes. The coupes I ordered online did not arrive on time so I bought backups at Pier 1. They are so pretty. It's nice to have them in the arsenal.
I like to rank the food as either a hit or miss and luckily this year, grand slam. Even Aaron, our pickiest of picky eaters enjoyed pretty much everything, especially when I assured him I wouldn't be insulted if he didn't finish everything. We got lucky 'cause with a menu that massive, it's a miracle it all was ready on time and tasted great.
Let me know if you want some of the recipes for the stuff and I'll scan and email the page.

Bon Apetit!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

"Honey! Can I spend $212 on a scarf?" "Of course you can."
"It's not for you though right? It's for one of the cats."

"No, it's not for me."

modern christmas

While I decorate pretty traditionally for Christmas, I strive to avoid cheesy things like snowmen or Santas. I hate Santa. I am very attracted to modern Christmases that still feel Christmasy and sparkly but with a twist. Some events place did this little bit of magic.
SO GIRLY! I might not be able to do this in the whole house but maybe next year I'll finally purchase that white Christmas tree I've always wanted for the office.