Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Guilty Pleasures

There are several things in life that I absolutely love, yet feel somewhat ashamed to admit for any number of reasons.  In the spirit of Thanksgiving and expressing my gratitude for all the "little things" in life, here's a list of my most secret (or not so secret) indulgences:

#1 - Grey's Anatomy

I started watching this when it first aired - you know, when George and Izzy were still on the show - when it was actually good.  It's not that great of a show anymore - hell - it's basically a prime time soap opera.  But, I LOVE IT!!!!  And I soo sooo soooo want Christina and Hunt to get back together already!  And Mark and Lexie need to come back from the dead to marry each other like they should have for the 6 seasons they were alive and in love without admitting it to anyone but themselves. That kind of stuff happens in soap operas - and not just the ones that air on Telemundo either!  AMIRIGHT???

#2 - Nutella

Yep, I'm just like the squirrel around this stuff.  Get me a small jar and a spoon and I could finish Nutella off within an hour.  Add a jar of peanut butter to that mix and I'd finish it all in 30 minutes or less.  No Joke.  I think I might be addicted.  Are there support groups for this stuff?  *wipes the chocolaty smear off of mouth*

#3 - Facebook Stalking

This is self-explanatory enough as is.  I had a hard enough time deciding to put it up here, I won't bore you to death about all the graphic detail I now know about several folks I went to High School with and family members whom I've never met.  Let's just say that I'm good...very good.  Muahahahaha...

#4 - You Scream, I Scream, We ALL SCREAM FOR:

My freezer pretty much always has some sort of frozen dairy confection enclosed - and I will eat them, at any time of day, without abandon.  What time is it?  ICE CREAM TIME?  You bet your sweet arse it is!  The picture shown above (as are all included in this post) were found using Google image search - but it looks like a delightful trio of flavors I would be honored to slurp down would I be given the option of including three flavors on one chocolate dipped sugar cone!  Oh the insanity!!!!

And, finally, my favorite!

#5 - Monty Python and the Holy Grail

Why, yes, those are the Knights who say Nee!  And you must bring them an shrubbery!  A rather nice one - not too large, nor too small.  And if you don't they will continue to say Nee, Nee!
'Tis nothing but a flesh wound!  Come back here you yellow bastard!  I will bite your legs off!


Come back and I will taunt you a second time!

Happy Thanksgiving to One and All!!!!


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Thanksgiving II: The Return of the XXXXL Ziploc Bags

Yep, we're hosting Thanksgiving again this year.  And, for all intents and purposes, I'm underly stressed out about the whole thing.  Literally I've done NOTHING to prepare, and the holiday is exactly 9 days away.  I haven't looked up one recipe, haven't nailed down my menu, haven't made sure all our linens and such are ready to go, haven't even decided how large of a turkey we'll get or if I will buy it fresh or frozen (and if it's the latter, I need to get on the ball ASAP and get it defrosting this weekend!).

Remember last year when I was waking up in the middle of the night with cold sweats dreaming about dried out turkey?  Well, not so this year.  By this time last year I had shopped at a million stores to buy tons of odds and ends we'd need to decorate our table, made the breadstick-cournicopia that was the centerpiece of our appetizers, and had even come up with really cute napkin rings to adorn each place setting.  This year, thankfully, I will be able to re-use most of what we bought, but I have no clue about how I'll decorate, if at all.  Or what we'll have for appetizers.  I figure a veggie tray from Costco will suffice, right?

The one thing I do know for certain is that Greg and I will definitely brine the turkey again - it turned out to be very tasty last year and I see no reason to change a good thing.  Of course, to brine a 20-lb turkey appropriately, one needs a rather large pot - or - in our case - an XXXXXXXL Ziploc Bag.  Yes, they make them that large (OK I may have exxagerated the number of "X's" shown on the actual bag packaging, but seriously, these bags are ginormous!)  Here's a picture of Greg from last year, man-handling our 22 pound turkey, which fit (with tons of extra room) into one of those aforementioned GIANT ziplocs.  Take note of how the turkey looks like it would barely fit into our sink.  That's because it was almost too large to do so.  The sucker was huge.  But it had nothing on the brine bag!

Here's a picture of the box of bags we bought last year at Target. They come in a 3-pack, and yes, they're safe for food use (at least according to the Ziploc FAQ webpage - see below).

Here's hoping that we can pull off another successful holiday...or that we at least have relatives who love us enough to not care much if we botch it all up and end up eating Chinese.  

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Hurricanes on the (Finished) Porch

When I think of the title of this post, I picture me sitting on my fancy new porch, in a comfy chair, with the breeze from our ceiling fans cooling my skin, while sipping on a tall glass of a strong, delightfully fruity drink while reminiscing about my vacation to New Orleans.  I picture neighbors walking their dogs and saying hello while children ride their bikes up and down the street, yelling about whose house they'll be going to next.

Unfortunately, my last week was nothing at all like what I described above.  If you live anywhere in the US (and probably anywhere overseas) you've most definitely heard about the destruction and devastation that Hurricane Sandy brought to the Northeastern United States, in particular New York City and New Jersey.

It was a doozy (yeah, I really said "doozy") of a storm - I know because I was working throughout, and, for the first time in my life, I was actually a little bit scared by the weather.  Seriously, I don't know how the residents of Florida and all the Caribbean Islands do it year after year - hurricanes are NO JOKE!!!  The flooding alone was devastating enough - but the winds are really what got my attention.  There was one point during the storm that I was inside a building, but could hear debris and roof-top mounted equipment being whipped around by the wind...and actually witnessed something hitting an overhead window panel and break the glass.  We managed to clear an entire floor of people in less than 15 seconds.  Thankfully nobody was hurt, but, there was a point where I wasn't quite sure if I was actually going to survive the storm.  There was another instance when I was in a car trying to locate an electrical substation in a parking lot that was in the process of flooding.  I opened the driver's door to get out of the car and was almost pulled out of the car because the wind whipped the car door open so fast and I wasn't expecting it.  I'm telling you people, it was serious.

There are many people out there who have lost everything they own - their homes, cars, clothes, everything!  If you are wondering where to donate, here's an ABC website with lots of links to organizations that are accepting donations: http://abcnews.go.com/US/hurricane-sandy-victims/story?id=17598687#.UJlTkm-QMuc

Thankfully, I'm one of the lucky ones who only sustained very minor damage to my home and was without power for a few days - my biggest complaint about the storm is having to throw away the melted ice cream that was in my freezer after holding onto it a few days in the vain hope that it would somehow be salvaged by the return of power.

As I've been updating this on a non-regular basis, it turns out that Greg and I did manage to finish our front porch project - literally the Friday before the storm hit (on Sunday).  We even hung up the mailbox and our house number to make our completion official.  We were both a tiny bit worried that the storm was going to damage our front porch masterpiece somehow.  Thankfully, our worries were all unfounded.

Here's a picture of our front porch, taken the Saturday before the storm.  Today, it looks pretty much the same except that the leaves have all blown off the roof and are now in a giant pile in front of our house on the curb.  Someday, when the weather is warmer and the threat of nasty weather is still a few months out on the calendar, I plan to actually enjoy a hurricane on my front porch...and I don't mean the weather kind!