Monday, November 29, 2010

Thanksgiving Blogging BLITZ!

Alright folks, prepare yourselves for a little Thanksgiving blogging BLITZ to catch up on the past two weeks of blog barrenness. (There were way too many double letters in that guy for it to be correct-- no time to check now!)

I've known for awhile that Stacy, Aunt Janet, and Meme were going to be comin' on up to the Big Apple for Thanksgiving and I was going to be prepared to set out a feast for my personal favorite holiday. I decided the only way to ensure that those sweet potatoes tasted just right was to do a full-on Thanksgiving dry-run. Turkey and everything. A little excessive? Probably. Tasty fun for everyone? YEP! So I feel like the pictures tell the story... so without further adieu.. the dry run..

I decided to cook the pies the night before... cause I was already stretching things by starting to cook a turkey AFTER I got home from work. So in go the pies...
Aren't they pretty? And for those of you who are curling up your nose right now saying "Where is the pumpkin pie?"-- to you, I say, quiet down. The pecan pie is truly the unsung hero of the thanksgiving meal. Who wants to eat orange gel? Not I. Thank you Sue Beth for the scrumptious recipe and patience as I called frequently for step-by-step assistance. No shame.
Out came the turkey... in its bag.. and I had no idea how to know if it was good or not...
But my guests were present and it was about 9:00 by this time... so I made the executive decision that the turkey was eatable. So we sat down to a lovely meal...
Andrew insisted on including me in the pic. He's such a peach.

So that, in a nutshell, was the dry-run Thanksgiving dinner. In the end, it was delicious and things went a lot smoother than I expected! Who said cooking a turkey is hard?? I mean it only took me 24 years of observing to try it out on my own. And I've decided that anyone can make perfect sweet potatoes if you have enough brown sugar and butter on hand. However... I did forget the cranberry sauce in the fridge... rookie mistake. All in all, it was a great night and a fabulous pre-Thanksgiving celebration in ole Glendale!

Stay tuned for more Thanksgiving updates to come...

Sunday, November 7, 2010

And Then There Were Two


Leticia is my latest addition to my humble abode in good ole Glendale, Queens. Once upon a time I had a two bedroom apartment with no other occupant. While I thoroughly enjoyed paying the full rent myself, I was thinking it might be nice to have another member of the 71-10 household. Enter Leticia. She moved up here in September from Austin and we had a mutual friend from there who told us we should get together for coffee/dinner/whatever it is New Yorkers do fun. So we met on the top of the Empire State Building... okay I'm kidding, but we did meet at this burger place that has iPads you order from and subsequently play with.. what?? So we get together for dinner, within 20 minutes I've assessed that she's a true Texas and has a deep love/respect for good food, so I know that we are going to be friends. She begins to tell me here saga of relocating to the Big Apple and explains her current living situation which includes living in a tiny box in Manhattan with four other people and a cat. Ew. So I take the opportunity to look like a real freak and inform the stranger who I just met that I have an extra bedroom and she's welcome to move in if she wants! Yep, after 20 minutes. Haha-- guess it's good that my intuition was right this time! A month later, she moved in and it's been so much fun! So I thought I should give her a shout out and also inform all of you readers so that when you picture yourself here with me in my New York life, you can know who's sleeping in the next room.

Apparently today is National Running Day... Leticia informed me of this when she returned home from her five mile run. I'm sitting on the couch and have no intention of going for a run... but it did take me back to two years ago at this time when preparation for the Bearathon began. Ohhh the memories. I think I'll stick to the couch and hope that my extensive commute each morning/evening will excuse my intake of sweet treats in this glorious city!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

'Tis the Season... To Attend Mysterious Political Rallies

I'm not even going to apologize this time for the tardiness of this blog post. By this time, if you're still checking for updates, you know I'm lazy and scattered and blog randomly. So on that note...

A few weeks ago I decided to go visit my dear friend and former roommate Christy, who is in grad school in Washington D.C. I've never been to D.C. so I thought it would be a grand opportunity to have a personal guide around our nation's great capital. I had recently discovered that you can take a bus round trip for $35.00, so I was all about that road trip! I took my time to buy my ticket (I mean how many people are randomly headed to D.C. for the weekend??) so last Tuesday when I got around to searching online for bus trips, I was a bit baffled when I saw that they were all SOLD OUT. I had no idea what this was all about. I was later informed that John Stewart and Stephen Colbert were having a "Rally for Sanity or Fear" ... which apparently means "Everyone from the ages of 19-25, come to D.C. for the weekend".

I finally found a ticket on a ghetto-fabulous website for Washington Deluxe Buses. I quickly bought the ticket and wiped the sweat from my brow... only to have the sweat reform as I read some reviews of the bus company. Why I didn't think of this before I put in my credit card information, I'm not sure-- but most of the reviews consisted of phrases such as "three hours longer" and "disgusting" and "credit card fraud". Awesome. At this point, there was nothing I could do.. so I clung to the two positive reviews (out of like 50) and remained positive! Luckily, the Washington Deluxe people must have consulted their negative reviews and made some changes, because my trip was absolutely delightful! I'm gonna have to write a Yelp review to help redeem the company. But let's be real- I'm too lazy to update my blog, I doubt that review is gonna happen!

On the way there, we stopped midway at the Delaware Welcome Center. My memories of welcome centers on family road trips include brochures about state parks, vending machines behind bars, and large trucks. Now don't get me wrong.. I love the South... but I have never felt more welcomed to a state than I did entering that tiny (mostly forgotten) state. I walked into this beautiful marble building that had a full food court including a Starbucks and a full organic market... what?! No Doritos behind bars or shady puddles of water in an outdoor bathroom (Mississippi- take notes). It was incredible. I didn't want to leave. My D.C. trip was already worth it. Low standards? Perhaps. But I'm telling you-- go to the Delaware Welcome Center and you won't regret it.

I got to D.C. and Christy was the perfect hostess. We went to the rally (along with over 200,000 other people who didn't know what they were going to!) and saw secret guest stars: John Legend, Cat Stevens, Ozzy Ozbourne, Kid Rock, Sheryl Crow... and some others I don't remember. It was pretty cool! They did some funny stuff and John Stewart gave a little speech at the end-- it was definitely the best political rally I've ever been to. I also got a sunburn... in 40 degree weather in October. That was great too. Christy and I both walked around like raccoons for the rest of the weekend, but we just called it our Halloween costumes, so I think we pulled it off.

This is the only historical-ish D.C.-ey picture I took. I'm a bad citizen, I know. Cupcakes were more imporant.

If you've seen the TLC show DC Cupcakes (I haven't) this is the cupcake shop they follow. I didn't expect to be impressed... I mean I've had a lot of good cupcakes in my day. But the salted caramel cupcake I had here was hands down the best cupcake of all time. No question. That alone made the ten hour round trip in the bus totally worth it!


All in all, my trip to D.C. was fabulous! I didn't even mention the Holocaust Museum which I could have spent all day in. It was incredible-- definitely go there and give yourself a good chunk of time to spend, because it's fascinating. I love NYC... but a weekend getaway to ole D.C. was a lovely little vaca! Hooray for living in a place where I can drive through four states and still have half the day left :)