sister

February and a few funny things

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So wow. February. That happened quickly. Any exciting plans for the month? I have a conference coming up that I’m super-excited about! #nerdalert

As far as non-work things go, I’m mostly looking forward to catching up with some friends. Oh—and cashing in a gift card for a much-needed massage. In a month that’s so focused on romantic love, it’s important to remember that there are many other types of love: family, friends, self-love…

Though this is the shortest month of winter, it’s still winter (at least here in the Northern Hemisphere), which may leave you feeling more inclined to want to drink wine and sleep than to do, well, anything. Aside from the usual happy/healthy cocktail of exercise, adequate sleep, and vitamin D supplementation to help you cope with the dark days and cold temps, a few good laughs go a long way too!

A few things that cracked me up recently:

*This text from my sister. That she felt compelled to send me a gif of Kramer on a random night is probably the funniest part:

Kramer

In 2012 I briefly dated a guy who had never seen Seinfeld. Maybe I judged him a little, but at the same time, it was a great excuse to re-watch the series from the beginning. Or at least the first season, given the brevity of the aforementioned dating situation. This is back when I had a TV and DVD player. Strange days indeed.

*A kid on the bus the other day singing a song about how “God made a poo-poo.” The song turned into a talking blues about Star Wars—more specifically, about the relationship between Luke Skywalker and Han Solo. It was pretty epic.

*A mostly toothless old lady playing Naughty Sudoku.

*My attempt at following painting directions. paint nite

For the uninitiated, check out Paint Nite.

*My favorite sausage joke. The other day in a Pilates class, the instructor asked if anyone knew any good jokes. Of course I did.

What made you laugh recently? 

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Thursday Things: Randomness as of Late

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1.) Someone posted this video on Facebook the other day, and I just had to share. Cheers to positive body image and a f*** you to impossible beauty standards perpetuated by the fashion industry.

2.) My sister is hilarious. The other day she randomly asked me my favorite dinosaur and then to guess hers (I should have gone with my gut instinct on the first try, but brontasaurus seemed too easy). Our text conversations are often like this. dinosaur

3.) Speaking of dinosaurs, who told men that adding “-asaurus” to online dating profile names was a good idea? Also baffling: the insertion of “taco” into said usernames. Because nothing says, “romance” like extinct, supposedly-cold-blooded creatures and…tortilla-wrapped salty things? I’m confused. Where have all the #kalemales gone?

4.) I spent the better part of Monday night trying to decide whether I had appendicitis. Eventually, I said, “Jess, it’s 2-f***ing a.m. If you can’t motivate yourself to get out of bed to hail a cab to the ER, you’re probably fine.” I also figured that, worst case scenario, my appendix had already burst, so may as well get some rest to fight off the potential for sepsis. I guess this is what eventually happens to hypochondriacs who work in health care. Of course, I still ran down the list of nearby hospitals in my head, deciding which ones were more appealing than others based on who I knew who worked there and what the food was like. Since most appendectomies are done laparoscopically now, patient stay is pretty short, but still.

5. I made chili again, only this one featured black beans and a can of salsa verde.

6.) When I began the process of clearing bad energy and promoting the flow of good energy in my apartment, I was told to hang art featuring “pairs” of things in my bedroom area. This photo by LA artist Claire Oring gave me “I want to go to there” chills. Yes, I first saw this at Urban Outfitters, but when I couldn’t stop looking at it, I knew it was the right thing, hipster retail-dom aside.

Hanging art is not my specialty…Claire Orig photo

…but eventually, with the help of a pencil, straight edge, a hammer, and nails, I managed. It was almost as satisfying as that time I set up that IKEA coffee table by myself. Definitely as satisfying as that first time I made a soufflé when I was 23 and realized, “Oh. Hypothetically speaking, I can do this whenever I want. Sweet.”

What’s on your mind this Thursday? Do you have a favorite dinosaur? Are you a hypochondriac? 

What I Ate Wednesday #139: Birthday Edition

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Happy Wednesday. I hope you’re enjoying a wonderful week so far. Ready for a little birthday-themed What I Ate Wednesday? As always, many thanks to the lovely Jenn of Peas & Crayons for hosting the weekly link party. Take a visit to see more WIAW from other bloggers!

I don’t know about you, but over the years, my birthdays have been so different from one another. Last year was a lot of fun, and the year before was nice and relaxing. 25 was just kind of sad and bizarre—I knew I wanted some big changes to happen, and I knew those changes were not going to be easy—even if I made it sound all sunshine & vegan rainbows in my post about it. If memory serves, 24 was objectively lame, but surprisingly, I didn’t even mention it on ye olde blog. Haha that means it must have been pretty awful! I do have to say that it was a real trip for me to go back in time and see how this site has evolved over the years!

This year started with an early hot yoga class with my mom. Part of me was annoyed that the instructor (who opened the class by rapping—I kid you not) kept picking on me, but I told myself that her comments were intended to be helpful, not hurtful.  I actually managed to surprise myself a few times with poses I’d never been able to get into before, so hey.

After getting packed up and ready, my mom and I headed into the city, where we grabbed lunch at Le Pain Quotidien and then set about working on a few things around my apartment—hanging pictures and a couple wind chimes and brainstorming some ways for me to rearrange the furniture to improve the flow of energy. I know, I know, but I think that stuff can make a huge difference!

A little later, we met up with my dad and sister for dinner at The Smith, where we enjoyed a lot of delicious food and drink. My dad got a kick out of the fact that I have a favorite bourbon. My dad barely drinks at all, but he thought it was so hilarious, he said that if I got a bourbon he would get a shot of tequila. So that happened. At the end of the meal, they actually got away with telling the server to put a candle in the cake. And a lollipop—nothing says, “You’re getting old, kid” like a glorified bank lollipop.

After dinner, my sister and I hit up the sale at Urban Outfitters and went to a concert. It was the perfect way to spend my birthday this year. And here’s the reason d’être of this post: what I ate.

  • Breakfast: Made some pumpkin cranberry oatmeal at my parents’…and poured it into a too-small bowl. Whoops!
  • Snack: Leftover squash & greens 
  • Lunch: My mom and I split two salads: one was the quinoa tabouleh, and the other was a smoked salmon one—so good!
  • Snack: Split this chia pod with my mom. It was new to both of us, and we agreed it was delicious!
  • Dinner: Started with prosecco, oysters, and fried calamari with marinara; For my main course I enjoyed filet mignon with salad and some of the brussels sprouts we ordered for the table. Oh, and bourbon. I like mine neat.
  • Dessert: A few bites of this delicious chocolate cake. I also tasted the toffee pudding (I think that’s what it was) my sister ordered.

All in all, it was a really good day, complete with delicious food.

What’s been your favorite birthday so far? 

What I Ate Wednesday #131

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So it turns out thatI didn’t lose a filling the other day—I needed a freaking crown in my root canal tooth! Good grief. At least I’m feeling better, if a bit sore.

What I Ate Wednesday almost caught me off guard again this week, but I did remember to snap some photos to share for the weekly link party. Thank you as always to the lovely Jenn of Peas & Crayons for hosting. Major props to a lady who can juggle taking care of a newborn baby girl with, like, anything. I have a hard enough time fitting all my own stuff in on a daily basis! Take a visit to see more WIAW from other bloggers!

Here’s what I ate on Saturday. It was a strange day but eventually concluded with karaoke. Should I be embarrassed of the fact that I can do karaoke completely sober? I had a blast celebrating my sister’s birthday with some silly song-singing. I was ravenous almost all day—I guess that’s because I was constantly moving around, except for when I was napping.

  • Breakfast: Plum oatmeal with a little pumpkin mixed in; topped with tahini & a drizzle of honey
  • Lunch: Salad, salsa verde chicken soup from the freezer, toast with Trader Joe’s guacamole hummus
  • Snacks: an adorably tiny apple; yogurt with cinnamon, cereal,  jam, and PB2 sauce
  • Dinner: An egg white frittata that fell apart; toast with more guacamole hummus
  • Snacks: a few sips of a whiskey & club soda that I decided I didn’t want after all and a few kernels of kettle corn at the karaoke place; later I made more PB2 sauce and sliced a banana on top along with some Krave cereal I swiped from the cafeteria at work (too freaking sweet to eat for breakfast but perfect for dessert)

What’s the best thing you’ve eaten recently? Favorite cereal? 

David Bowie asks Iman if they should just do lasagna again

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Happy Saturday. Hope you get as much a kick out of this story as I did. Good god, I love The Onion. Rock legends and supermodels gotta eat too.

Speaking of David Bowie, birthday karaoke (can’t believe my little sister is 26) is on the horizon. This song may or may not be totally my fault.

What are you up to this weekend? 

Mercer Kitchen

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Despite being sick all weekend, I did manage to pull myself together to go have lunch with my mom and sister downtown on Saturday. We’d been planning it for weeks, and fortunately, by the time Saturday morning rolled around, my immune system was amenable to my leaving the house.

I’m going to be totally honest and admit that it takes a lot to get me down to Soho on a Saturday (or anytime, really), when  it’s teeming with a maddening combination of tourists and well-dressed hangover monsters who will walk right the f*** into you.

Mercer Kitchen SalmonThat said, there are some damn-good restaurants in Soho, so when my mom suggested Mercer Kitchen, I was totally game. Though I wouldn’t put it on my list of all-time favorites, I’ve enjoyed it every time I’ve been. The highlights this time was the yellow watermelon salad (with goat cheese instead of feta—nice!) and perfectly cooked salmon, which came in a cherry tomato vinaigrette over corn pudding. Oh, and a glass of prosecco, which seems to be my drink of the summer. The three of us had a really nice time. It’s so rare that the three of us can get our schedules to coordinate, so it was great to catch up a little.

What was the last restaurant meal you had? New Yorkers—do you know any places in Soho I should check out? 

Working (and playing) for the weekend

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First off, Happy Fathers’ Day to all the baby-daddies out there. Here are a couple of my past Fathers’ Day posts:

Secondly, how is it Fathers’ Day already? And by that, I mean mid-June. WTF, time?

Despite having to work Saturday (I survived!), I’ve actually had a really nice weekend, thanks to a few catnaps.important things.

Friday night, my sister and I went out for dinner (I had a groupon to this place) and then hung with my cousin  and his wife before we all headed to see the Postal Service at Barclays Center. My inner 17-year-old was freaking the f*** out in the best way possible. Ben Gibbard and Jenny Lewis on the same stage? I was a happy camper.

I feel like I’ve been talking a lot about music on this blog lately—even more than usual. I may also have a playlist coming your way soon. I go through phases where I basically depend on it—it’s my frame of reference and my therapy and part of how I process things. Even the most positive changes bring challenges, and having some go-to songs for those tough moments makes all the differences. I also find that I get attached to certain songs that speak to a particular experience I’m having. Later, when I listen to those songs I feel like I’m traveling in time, for better or worse (I think a lot of us have “lost” favorite albums or artists to relationships gone south).

Luckily, the weather has been beautiful this weekend. I spent most of Saturday afternoon/early evening outside near the water—freaking gorgeous! Wore myself out all over again…

What have you been up to this weekend? Do you “time travel” through music?