Saturday, August 23, 2008

Happy Birthday, Karla

I turned 32 on Friday. Yay!

Hubby had a breakfast donut buffet laid out in the kitchen for me when I woke up. We drove up to the Evergreen State Fair and fattened ourselves up with Carnival food.


Anthony gave my $5 to buy lotto tickets, and I'm happy to say I won $3 from the scratch-offs.


We came home, got dolled up and Anthony took me to have dinner at a fancy seafood restaurant overlooking Lake Washington. We got there just in time to see the sunset behind the Olympics. Rico Suave also had my favorite flowers delivered right to our table.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Omnivore's Hundred

The weather outside is crappy, I'm bored to drowsiness by this grant application. Thank God for the World Wide Web.

Y'all know how much I love email quizzes! I got this gem from cilantro & lime .


1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you've eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.
4) If you've put it on your blog, or emailed it to friends, shoot me an email of your list or post a comment here linking to your results.

I had to look some of this stuff up (thanks Wikipedia!)

The VGT Omnivore's Hundred:

1. Venison
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak Tartare
5. Crocodile
6. Black pudding
7. Cheese fondue
8. Carp
9. Borscht
10. Baba ghanoush
11. Calamari
12. Pho (o how I luv pho)
13. PB&J sandwich
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
16. Epoisses
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns
20. Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries
23. Frois gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn or head cheese
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper
27. Dulce de leche
28. Oysters (not my cup of tea)
29. Baklava
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl (another new fav)
33. Salted lassi
34. Sauerkraut
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a fat cigar (but that's a good idea...)
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O
39. Gumbo
40. Oxtail (mom, remind me to take you for oxtails when you come. meat falls right off the bone!)
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects (tried once, but never again)
43. Phaal
44. Goat's milk (Langston...)
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
46. Fugu
47. Chicken tikka masala (thank you, Anup, for bringing this into my life)
48. Eel

49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
52. Umeboshi
53. Abalone
54. Paneer
55. McDonald's Big Mac Meal
56. Spaetzle
57. Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV
59. Poutine
60. Carob chips
61. S'mores
62. Sweetbreads (disgusting!!!)
63. Kaolin (according to Google, this is clay. not down for that)
64. Currywurst
65. Durian
66. Frogs' legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake (all 3, many times)
68. Haggis
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette
71. Gazpacho
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost, or brunost
75. Roadkill
76. Baijiu
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
78. Snail
79. Lapsang souchong
80. Bellini
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict
83. Pocky
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant.
85. Kobe beef
86. Hare (if rabbit is included, yes...if not, no thank you)
87. Goulash
88. Flowers
89. Horse
90. Criollo chocolate
91. Spam
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
94. Catfish
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel with lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
98. Polenta
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
100. Snake

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Our weekend camping adventure

Its amazing that we can drive 40 minutes east and be in the mountains. I love that. We took advantage of that fact this weekend and headed to the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie Forest for some camping and hiking. We stayed at the Middle Fork campground, which was excellent (as long as you don't mind lots of kids - all properly wrangled by parents, but very loud). This was Figaro's first camping trip. He had a blast hanging outside with his parents for 2 days.

Saturday, we hiked 5 miles up the Taylor River trail to Otter Falls. The majority of the hike is along the river, so even though the day was hot, the breeze was cool. We had to scramble over several blow-outs and through a couple of wash-outs along the way, but it was a very nice hike. At about 3 miles, we came across a lovely wooden bridge crossing a small cascade. We all took a break to cool off.

cooling off

About a mile and a half after that, we turned off the trail at a spot marked by cairns (damn, I meant to take a picture of that), scrambled about half a mile up a hill, over and under fallen trees and boulders, then down the other side through scratchy brush about 7 feet tall. Then we were visually assaulted by the beauty of Otter Falls

Otter Falls and Lipsey Lake

It's dry season, so the falls were really only a trickle. But enough for people to use them as water slides into Lipsy Lake (what fun!) Figaro swam around with his dad, while I waded thigh deep to take pictures.

swimming with dad

We had snacks, then headed back. Figaro's joints were so sore by the time we got back to camp, he climbed in the back of the truck and stayed there til near nightfall - sleeping and watching us hang out at camp.

worn out

Early Sunday morning, we were lucky enough to get a beautiful electrical storm off to the west. What a sight with the mountains in the foreground. Another good northwestern weekend!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

My first executive decision

I hired a co-worker's high schooler son as a program assistant as a favor. Not only was he obnoxious, annoying, disruptive, childish, late-coming & early-leaving, a poor listener and unable to follow directions or complete a single task. He was also (and some may say more importantly) a bad dresser.
After a day and a half on the job, he received his first warning (read: threat). At the end of the second day, I fired him.
Now, I'm drunk with power.
And its not nearly as hard to fire someone as I thought it was.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Olympics

I've been in an Olympic stupor - stuck in front of my tv, watching the Olympics on 3 screens (picture-in-picture and my laptop). Subsisting on healthy snacks and a later day work schedule to accomodate the stupid 8pm primetime West Coast starts.

Best friggin Opening Ceremonies EVER aside, when will the Chinese government get it? You have to treat people better. The final straw was uprooting 7 year-old singing phenom Yang Peiyi, pictured right, to sing under the damn stage while less talented, but cuter (according to the music director) Lin Miaoke, pictured left, lip-synced for the world to see. What the hell?

Apparently, Yang Peiyi won the singing contest but was deemed "not pretty enough" to be on stage. She looks pretty darn cute to me, particularly with that snazzy little bob of hers. But, whatever. The Chinese never fail to disappoint me - unless we're talking about gymnastics, then they totally kick ass.

"We have a responsibility to face the audience of the whole country, and to be open with this explanation. We should all understand it like this: it is a question of the national interest. It is a question of the image of our national music, our national culture. Especially at the entrance of our national flag, this is an extremely important, an extremely serious matter...So we made the choice. I think it is fair to both Lin Miaoke and Yang Peiyi - after all, we have a perfect voice, a perfect image and a perfect show, in our team's view, all together."—Chen Qigang, musical designer

In other news, its been absolutely orgasmic watching Michael Phelps and friends totally dominate in the pool. And I'm thrilled that the plagued men's gymnastics team pulled a Bronze out of nowhere. Through which I am pleased to announce my first Olympic crush since Greg Louganis - the fine physical speciman, Raj Bhavsar. I have watched on in mock pity on other (sub-par) countries as the hammer that is Misty May-Treanor and Kerrie Walsh keep smashing people on the beach volleyball circuit. They dispatched the Cubans in less than 32 minutes. Sad.

photo credits:Getty/AFP as seen on

Monday, August 11, 2008

Another goodie box

I received a goodie box from my second swap partner, kate, from thecleanplateclub.

I received some marvelously delicious (like eat directly off your finger out of the jar) black raspberry preserves, a chocolate nougat bar and some dark chocolate chunks that I can't wait to sprinkly on something decadent, and some locally made granola (which I will debut on my upcoming camping trip).

Many thanks to kate for putting together a great assortment of guilty pleasures!

For other Taste Like Home Food Swap news, visit Megan's site.


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