Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween

I almost forgot today was Halloween. That's what happens when you haven't left your house in three days because of a hurricane. Your days get all turned around, then you finally shower and put on real clothes and walk to work, only to see some guy dressed up as an Indian and you wonder what in the world he is doing until you realize it's Halloween! (And then you take a breath because that was a very long run-on sentence/thought and laugh at yourself for being confused.) 

So here's to hoping everyone has a safe and fun Halloween! I'm looking forward to seeing all of the costumes. Apparently, we have a lot of trick or treaters.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

What I Baked on Sunday

Brunch Edition

On Saturday, Mary and I hosted a brunch at our house for a group of girls. The menu included: English muffins and scones, breakfast casserole, cinnamon roll-ups, and yogurt parfaits.
The English muffins and scones were store bought. Mary was in charge of the breakfast casserole and used her mom's recipe containing eggs, sausage, bread, milk, and cheese. I made the cinnamon roll-ups and yogurt parfaits.

Cinnamon Roll-ups from Full Moon, High Tide

1 loaf of thinly sliced bread, crusts removed
1 (8-ounce) package of cream cheese, softened
1 egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

  • Preheat oven to 400. 
  • Roll bread flat and set aside.
  • Combine cream cheese, egg yolk, vanilla, and 2 tablespoons sugar, mixing well. Spread mixture on bread and roll tightly.
  • Comine 1 cup sugar and cinnamon, blending well. Dip bread in butter, then cinnamon mixture.
  • Arrange on baking sheet and freeze. Cut into bite-size pieces.
  • Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned. 
These are always a hit. You can make them ahead of time and keep them in the freezer until you are ready to use them.

2 cups plain yogurt
2 tablespoons good honey
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Combine ingredients in a bowl.
I layered the yogurt in mason jars with fresh fruit and granola. So easy and clean up was a breeze. We just put the tops on the leftover jars and stuck them in the fridge. 
Some of the girls. 
We had the best time enjoying the beautiful weather on our patio. I would say it was a successful brunch judging by the fact that people were still at our house at 6pm when I left for the evening. I don't know why we don't entertain more often. 

Monday, October 29, 2012

Hurricane a Coming

We are hunkering down waiting for the storm to hit. Things are supposed to get pretty bad this evening. Thankfully my NYC trip got cancelled, so I am all tucked in in my cozy attic. It's kind of nice to have an excuse to stay in bed and listen to the rain on the roof. Hopefully the damage is minimal and we keep power.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Fun Facts Friday

1. This time last year, I was on my way to Memphis to celebrate the wedding of Jennifer and Hall. Happy one year anniversary!
2. On Sunday, I am heading to New York for work, along with Hurricane Sandy and a snow storm. The combination has been dubbed "Frankenstorm." I guess I should pack my rain boots and winter coat. Hopefully, I won't get stranded in NYC but I guess there are worse places to be stuck.
3. It has stormed severely every day I have had an event this fall. Is this supposed to be some sort of sign?

4. This weekend is Wofford Homecoming. I am sad to be missing it again but hope to make it back one of these days. I can't believe it's been almost two years since graduation.

5.  I need to be better about staying in touch. I've gotten to catch up with a few friends from home this week and it's been good for the soul. I can't wait to see them over Thanksgiving/possibly before.

6. I forgot how much I love kitchen dance parties. I don't know why they don't happen more often.

7. I'm still listening to the Taylor Swift cd on repeat. I think she should have included this song on the regular cd instead of just the deluxe version for Target.

8. I've been burning the candle at both ends this week and hope I can keep it up through the middle of next week. No rest for the weary.

9. Happy Friday!

Thursday, October 25, 2012


I bought the new Taylor Swift album the day it came out and have pretty much been listening to it on repeat ever since. You should listen to it and have a dance party. That's what I did last night while I was baking up a storm in the kitchen.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Don't Forget to Live

There has been a lot of tragedy in the past few weeks and while fortunately none of it has affected me personally, my heart is still sad. You never want to hear about a deadly car accident, someone taking his own life, or someone else battling cancer. All of these incidents have certainly made me stop and think about just how precious life is.

This verse has been on my mind:
Don't forget to live. 

Monday, October 22, 2012

A Pretty Place

Sometimes I forget how pretty DC is. I get too caught up in rushing from one place to the next, paying more attention to my phone than the scenery around me. On Saturday, I went for a long walk and actually took the time to enjoy the fall weather and all that comes with it.
Seeing all of the leaves changing made me really excited about Thanksgiving. I know I am getting ahead of myself but November is right around the corner and Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. Especially when I get to spend five full days at one of the prettiest places on earth.
Come on November 20!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Fun Facts Friday

I was going to post my Friday Five but decided I had more to share, so here are some fun facts instead:

1) I witnessed a miracle this week. I spilled a whole cup of hot tea on my work computer and it still works! This wasn't a small flood that I safely removed my computer from without it getting really wet. This was a full blown cascade of tea right on the laptop keyboard - as in I turned my computer upside down and liquid came out. I'm chalking the fact that it still works up to divine intervention. 

2) I can't wait to catch up on Revenge and Scandal this weekend. I have decided if I could be a TV character, I would be Olivia Pope. She is constantly taking care of business and behaving like a duck - calm and collected on the outside but paddling like the devil underneath. I think we are a lot alike, other than the whole affair she is having with the president. The current one really isn't my type anyway.  

3) I took a break from thrillers and love stories and picked up God Never Blinks: 50 Lessons for Life's Little Detours from the library after Hungry Meets Healthy recommended it. I've heard most of the lessons before but it's a good reminder to not take life too seriously. 

4) I have the best coworkers! They bring me treats like Pumpkin Spice Lattes just because. #FridayTreat

5) I haven't been to the grocery store since my mom was here, which was two weeks ago. Needless to say, the pickings are getting a little slim.

6) Have you heard about these girls? They are on the show Nashville and are pretty great.  
7) I am very much looking forward to going home tonight, putting on my sweatpants, and having a glass of wine. This pretty much happens every Friday night but I always look forward to it. 

8) That's all for now. Happy Friday! 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Lacking Inspiration

I seem to be lacking in the inspiration department this week. Most of the time, I form my blog posts in my head before I ever even start to type them. This week I have had a few ideas but I can't seem to put any words behind them. So today, I leave with you a poem by Ralph Waldo Emerson. I had it hanging in my dorm room senior year and ran across it over the weekend while I was cleaning out some old papers. It is now hanging on my bulletin board at work. Enjoy.

What is Success?
To laugh often and love much;

To win the respect of intelligent people
 and the affection of children;

To earn the appreciation of honest critics 
and endure the betrayal of false friends;

To appreciate beauty, to find the best in others;

To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child,
 a garden patch or a redeemed social condition;

To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived.

This is to have succeeded.

- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Friday, October 12, 2012

The Friday Five

1. What I'm Reading:

From Amazon: Dirty politics, dirty tricks, and a barrage of final twists, The Other Woman is the first in an explosive new series by Hank Phillippi Ryan. Seduction, betrayal, and murder—it’ll take a lot more than votes to win this election.

2. What I'm Eating:

These might be my new favorite things. They are good plain or with black bean hummus or taco soup/chili. 

3. What I'm Listening to:

Obsessed. I can't wait for the full album to come out. I have her other three so I might as well add to the collection. 

4. What Recipe I'm Bookmarking:
I am all about soup these days now that the weather is cooler. And, I also can't get enough roasted vegetables. Perfect combination. 

5. What Pins I'm Loving:
Happy Friday!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

It's Official

I am officially a DC resident and so is Dora the Explorer. I finally had to change everything over after putting it off for as long as I could. I got my new license a couple of weeks ago but didn't have all the paperwork for my car. One more trip to the DMV this morning and now Dora is all set as well. Who would have thought I would still be up here a year and a half later with no plans to leave? I certainly didn't.

Now, if only someone could help me put my new license plates on...

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Weekend Recap

I was really looking forward to this past weekend. Not only was it a long weekend but my mom came to visit. She has come up a few times since I've been up here, twice to help me move and once with May Lo, but never to hang out just the two of us. It was so fun having her all to myself for a few days.

On Friday, I took a half day and met her at my house to unload her car. She drove up here instead of flying to bring me a dining room table and chairs. It drove her crazy that my roommates and I used to eat dinner while sitting on the couch. A few trips to the thrift store and the problem was solved! If anyone wants to come over for dinner, I will be happy to cook for you.
I feel so grown up now.
Once the car was unloaded, we drove out to Upper Marlboro to watch Ariat Finals at Capitol Challenge. Competing in the Finals is on my bucket list, so I highly enjoyed watching the class and taking it all in. We weren't on the show grounds more than two minutes before I told my mom how much I miss it. I am already planning my comeback. 
Anyone know of a 3 foot eq horse I can borrow?
Saturday, we went for a long walk on the water and then tooled around Alexandria. For dinner, we went to one of my favorite restaurants in Eastern Market, Acqua al 2. Part of the decor is signed dinner plates on the wall. The plates don't really fit in with the rest of the restaurant but some of them are pretty entertaining. 
I am not sure who these people are, but I appreciate their life goals.
On Sunday, we stayed in Georgetown and hit M Street. I had the best time picking out the tablescape for the dining room table and this side table. We had some good laughs talking about the origin of the painting below. If only I could share it without incriminating a few people.
The contraband has finally found a resting place.
Sunday afternoon, we drove to Richmond to see some family friends. If you are ever in the area, you have to eat at Millie's Diner. From the outside it looks like a dive, but the food is incredible. 
On Monday, I took the train back into the city while Mom headed to SC. If only every weekend could be a long weekend and Mom could visit more often. 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum

You've probably never even heard of this film before, let alone seen it. But I had to watch it back in middle school for Latin class. Don't ask me what made me think of it the other day. That's just how my mind works sometimes. But anyways, in this musical comedy inspired by an ancient Roman playwright, a slave attempts to win his freedom by helping his young master woo the girl next door. I don't recall anything very funny happening and the characters never even travel to the Forum. Basically, the title has nothing to do with the actual movie.

So, why am I telling you all of this? Because this post has absolutely nothing to do with the title either. Nothing funny happened on my way to work today. This post is actually about speed dating. Yes, you read that correctly. One of my roommates and I went speed dating last night.

I should probably preface this by saying that the idea came about late one night after Lucy returned from a disastrous first date. She could write a book about her awful experiences. So in an effort to cheer her up, Mary threw out the idea of online dating and I suggested speed dating. Sometimes you need to take matters into your own hands. A few days later, there was a Groupon for speed dating and the ball was set in motion. We agreed that we would go purely for the experience and great stories that were sure to come out of it.

So last night, we met up after work for a quick drink before heading to the restaurant. When we got there, we checked in and were given name tags, numbers, and a scorecard. I felt like we were playing a game, which I guess we kind of were. The rules: 3 minutes at each table, 31 rotations. Ready, set, go. 
Clearly, I took a lot of notes.
It was a riot. Some guys took it way too seriously. Others were just there for kicks and giggles like we were. Some times the 3 minutes flew by and other times the timer could not go off fast enough. 

Lucy and I sat on opposite sides of the room, so halfway through I started meeting guys she'd started with. I think we threw them off with our similarities: same name, address, home state, alma mater, and hair color. One guy asked me to put in a good word for him. 

Some were creative with their questions, others just wanted to know where I worked, how long I've been in DC, and what I did for fun. Apparently, I need to come up with more interesting hobbies. 

Overall, I was highly entertained. Would I do it again? Probably not. But I think everyone should give it a try at least once. By the end of the night, I was exhausted. Having to be on your A game while meeting 31 guys is tiring. Lucy summed it up perfectly by saying "maximum effort, minimal results." But then again, I've already received one follow up message so who knows...

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Special Delivery

My Chobani yogurt arrived yesterday! It was pretty comical when the UPS guy brought in this ridiculously large box addressed to me. I think he thinks I'm crazy or obsessed with greek yogurt.
I've already gotten into the black cherry and blueberry and can't wait to try the rest!
Each container has a recipe on the side so I might have to experiment - pineapple cornbread anyone?

Monday, October 1, 2012


I think I have a dark side. And no, I am not channeling my inner Kelly Clarkson on this one. I am referring to my fascination with crime shows, murder mysteries, and cold cases. One of my favorite TV shows is NCIS and I love anything written by David Baldacci and Mary Higgins Clark. I realize these are all works of fiction but I always end up being captivated by them. Just ask my roommates who sat through Taken and the Drew Peterson Lifetime movie with me. At one point, one of them looked at me and said "you do realize this is my worst nightmare, right?" Sorry for not changing the channel!
On Saturday, I took advantage of the free museum day and visited the Crime and Punishment Museum. It is one of the few privately owned museums in DC so I shouldn't have been surprised to see the line wrapped about the block for free admission. The hour long wait would not have been so bad if the guy behind me hadn't struck up a conversation. It was like being on a bad blind date that I didn't sign up for. Once I finally made it inside, I was able to put some space (as in a couple of exhibits) between my potential suitor and myself. I have never been so thankful for a crowded museum in my life.
The museum showcases the evolution of crime and punishment through the ages, beginning with medieval knights and ending with names and crimes that I recognized from my lifetime. It included everyone from Jean Lafitte to Al Capone and OJ Simpson. I thoroughly enjoyed all of the exhibits, especially the unsolved cases and crime lab. It was definitely worth visiting although not as a first non date. But then again, maybe I should find out if you will love me, even with my dark side.