Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy 2010!

We are officially old. It's not even 10pm on New Years' Eve and Michael is sleeping on the couch, we already played Scrabble and I have a cat curled up in my lap.

Last year's resolutions:

1. Relearn French - Fail.

2. Try new recipes - I did okay this year. I found good recipes for falafel, herbed chicken parmesan tenders and butternut squash lasagna, all of which were good enough to go into our regular dinner rotation.

3. Run 12 miles a week.- I was not good about keeping track of my mileage, so I really don't know if I ever hit this milestone. I did run 4 5K races this year, so I think I did pretty well. My best time was 29:37.

4. Read 25 books - I barely did this! Here are the books I read:
1. I Like You: Hospitality Under The Influence
2. The Ecco Anthology of Contemporary American Short Fiction
3. The Audacity of Hope
4. The Omnivore's Dilemma
5. The Reader
6. Musicolphilia: Tales of Music and the Brain
7. Bel Canto
8. In A Sunburned Country
9. Unaccustomed Earth
10. Julie and Julia
11. My Life In France
12. Middlesex (this was a re-read)
13. Eat This, Not That
14. The Namesake (another re-read)
15. Wicked
16. Lies My Teacher Told Me
17. Outlander
18. Born To Run
19. Naked (re-read)
20. The Diversity Culture (I didn't finish this, so I don't really know if I should count this one)
21. Made In America
22. The BestAmerican Short Stories
23. In Defense of Food
24. Holidays On Ice (re-read, a favorite for the Christmas season!)
25. Broken Music
26. And I am currently reading STP: A Journey Through America with the Rolling Stones

I hope everyone has had a safe and happy New Years Eve!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Desert Island Jukebox

There is a new NPR station in Dallas on 91.7 that plays really great music and has some really good syndicated shows. The other night on my way home from work I was listening to Sound Opinions and they had a great segment called The Desert Island Jukebox.

What would be on your desert island jukebox?

Here are a few of my selections...

Take A Picture by Filter

The Warmth by Incubus

Feel Flows by The Beach Boys

Up On The Roof (The Drifters did the original , but I also love Peter Cincotti's version)

My Own Worst Enemy by Lit

What I Got by Sublime

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Wish List Wednesday: Christmas Edition!

What are you hoping to get for Christmas this year?

I already got one of my gifts and I LOVE it! The T-Mobile G1 with Google phone.

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This is the first smart phone I've had and I don't know how I lived without it! It links to my gmail account so I get notifications when I have a new email and also notifies me to events on my google calendar. Plus it has navigation, all free apps, a slide-out keyboard and tons of other stuff I haven't even figured out yet!

Okay, I got another early Christmas present. My mom and I went to the Relache Spa at the Gaylord! We did a mother-daughter package: massage, pedicure and manicure. It was great to get away and have a little girl time before the holidays. I loved all the treatments, I got a cute color on my toes, Lincoln Park After Dark.
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I really hope I get some new running shoes! I really want to be fitted for shoes so I can run as comfortably as possible, so maybe a gift card to a running store. I'm hoping to really increase my mileage this spring, so some shoes and gear would definitely help.

I also hope I get some good books. We do a book exchange with our families on Christmas day, and with as many readers in our family there are always some good choices. Since we do it white elephant style, if you get one you really want you have to hope it doesn't get stolen!

Have a very Merry Christmas!

A Festivus for the Rest of Us!

I hope everybody is having a good Festivus and airing their grievances.

I am trying very hard to be productive today. I had yesterday and today off from work and I always love it when I have two days off together. However, I have been having some bad sinus congestion since Saturday. On Sunday I left work early because my head hurt so bad that I was really sick to my stomach. I worked late Monday night, didn't get home until about 3:00am. Tuesday morning I should have slept in, but I woke up about 8:30 with (you guessed it!) another sinus headache. So I ended up sleeping most of the day. Maybe I was also sleep deprived because I feel much better today.

Today is my annual baking extravaganza! I am baking pumpkin bread for the whole management team at work (17 people in all). This is a great recipe, I can't even remember where I found it.

1 1/2 cup flour
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 cup pumpkin puree (I use can pumpkin)
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 egg
2 Tbsps softened margarine

Preheat oven 350 degree F

1. Sift all dry ingredients together. Stir in pumpkin, brown sugar, buttermilk, egg, and butter. Mix well.

2. Pour dough into greased loaf pan. Bake 1 hour or until toothpick poked into center comes clean.

Michael also requested that I make some chocolate chip cookies. I found these dark chocolate and mint chips and I am going to substitute them for the semi-sweet chips that I normally use.

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I am also going to put together some spinach and artichoke dip to take to our Christmas brunch and book exchange.

Whew! I am so excited for Christmas to be here!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

WIsh List Wednesday: Dream Home

I am so tired of apartment living: noisy neighbors, no control over heat, fighting for parking spaces. So today I am building our dream house in my head.

First up: the kitchen!

I long for the day when I have real counter space. And a pantry! I would cook like crazy if I could have a kitchen bigger than a closet.
Love these from and

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I love this island!

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Living room inspiration pictures.

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Home office

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And of course the master bathroom should be a place to unwind.

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I love this tub, as well as the blue and gold color scheme.

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Monday, December 7, 2009

Bronson Sellers Smith

We said goodbye to a friend today. Bronson passed away December 1, 2009 and his funeral was today.
Bronson and I went to elementary school together and then he wound up in our extended circle of friends once we were grown. Bronson had a wicked sense of humor and a generous spirit. He would go out of his way to help somebody out or just put a smile on their face when they were down.
After the funeral, a big group of us decided to go to Snuffers to eat, drink and share our best memories of Bronson. (In fact, there might have been some shots taken in the parking lot of the church. But trust me, Bronson would have wanted it that way!) We laughed until our sides hurt remembering the ways he touched our lives.
It was especially hard to say goodbye because Bronson was overcome with the demons he fought and took his own life. Suicide is so difficult to make sense of, we will never understand why he decided to leave us when so many people cared about him and would have done anything to help him.
Please keep his family in your thoughts this holiday season.