Saturday, February 28, 2009

Anyone want fresh baked cookies?

I do! I do!

The weather is rather lackluster today, so the hubs and I decided to make cookies. Well, I decided to make cookies and the hubs helped out. I'm not good in dealing with sharp objects and needed him to cut up a few baking squares for me. Next time I'll make sure that activity doesn't occur during any sporting events. The guy took the chocolate out into the living room so he didn't miss any of the Cap's game.

Today's yummy goodness is brought to you by the wonderfully talented Martha Stewart (whom, I'm sure you have heard of at some point or another). I really think whoever first combined peanut butter and chocolate should receive some type of Nobel Prize. I don't know about you, but that combination always puts me in a good mood.

Peanut Butter-Chocolate Chunk Cookies

* 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
* 1 teaspoon baking soda
* 1 cup peanut butter (smooth or chunky)
* 4 tablespoons ( 1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
* 1/2 cup packed dark-brown sugar
* 1/2 cup granulated sugar
* 2 large eggs
* 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
* 8 ounces semisweet chocolate, cut into chunks

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, whisk together flour and baking soda; set aside. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat peanut butter, butter, and sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla, and beat until smooth. With mixer on low, gradually add flour mixture, beating just until combined. Stir in chocolate chunks.
2. Drop dough by heaping tablespoons, 1 inch apart, onto two large baking sheets. Bake until golden, 13 to 15 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through. Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool.
3. Eat cookies. I prefer mine with milk, but that's up to you.

Mmmmmmmm, cookies.

Now, if you can excuse me, I have to unlock a few more boards on Mario Kart. The hubs bought me a Wii for my birthday and it isn't fair if he beats me at my favorite game.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Is it spring yet?

I love winter, as it's the perfect season for a pale person like myself. I love bundling up in cozy sweaters and wearing knit hats every possible second. I love hot chocolate and baking fresh muffins. I love skiing and snow ball fights. So it is with a great deal of difficulty that I have to admit I want it to be spring time.

I don't know if you heard, but Pantone declared Mimosa as the color of year. Thank goodness! I love yellow and now there are plenty of yellow accessories to choose from this year. Of course, my favorite color palette is black, white and yellow. You could say that I'm inspired by my dog:

Coach Parker Satchel. Okay, it isn't quite Mimosa, but it is definitely a playful shade of yellow. For a person who doesn't wear yellow well, such as myself, a bright yellow bag is a perfect way to get in on the trend without looking like a light bulb. The price tag, $458, is way out of my price range, but I can certainly dream. I could spend all of my birthday money on this one bag, but I'd rather buy a few items instead.

Kate Spade "Idiom" Thin Enamel Bangle. Even the name, "A Place in the Sun" is calling out to be worn during the spring and summer. There is even a bangle with polka dots if you like those better.

J. Crew Nicolette Strappy Heels. A list of yummy yellow accessories wouldn't be complete without something from J.Crew. Preppy and bright go hand and hand at J. Crew. These sandals are yellow without being too much yellow material. I think I could pull these off a lot easier than say a pair of bright yellow patent leather pumps.

CB2 Daisy Pillow. The poster child of Mimosa! I would have bought these pillows already, but I don't live anywhere near a CB2 store and I'd rather see them in person before purchasing them (oh, who am I kidding, I'll probably end up buying these!).

Pottery Barn Organic Embroidered Dot Duvet Cover & Sham. Yellow, check. Polka dots, check. Organic, check. Perfect for those who don't want a ton of yellow, but still want to brighten up their bedroom a tad.

Pottery Barn Lemon Toile Salad Plates. Cuteness overload! How could anyone criticize anything about your cooking with these adorable plates. Now, I know the hubs will object to these plates because we already have yellow plates. Grrrr!

Hunter "Original" Rain Boot. Now these babies are perfect for all that spring time rain! If you happen to have a vegetable or flower garden, well these would be perfect for working in your garden.

Any other yellow items that you've coveting?

Sunday, February 22, 2009

What will be on your mind during the Academy Awards?

Now, I know some people only watch the Academy Awards for the fashion. Others watch for what they hope will be interesting speeches. Plenty of people watch because they are routing for a certain picture to claim specific awards. All of those are solid reasons to watch tonight's telecast.

Here's a few things that will be going through my mind:

Who will win?
- Will Heath Ledger become only the second posthumous Oscar winner? (FYI- I'm pulling for him)
- If Heath wins, who will accept the award on his behalf? Normally, if an Oscar winner isn't in attendance the presenter graciously accepts on the winner's behalf. At least that's the unofficial rule ever since Brando sent in a proxy and caused a storm. As with every rule there have been exceptions or it just could be no one was going to tell Jane Fonda what she could or couldn't do.

- Is this finally the year that Kate Winslet wins an Oscar? Now, if she does, will she be plagued by speculation that voters were really voting for her two phenomenal performances in both The Reader and Revolutionary Road ? Will she be able to say anything while accepting her Oscar or will she pull a Julia Roberts and tell the little musical conductor man to shove off?

- The "no one can ever predict this award category" is definitely best supporting actress. Since Kate isn't in this category, it's a wide open field. Could Marisa Tomei finally throw six feet of dirt over that urban legend that Jack Palance read the wrong name? Or will Penelope Cruz take the award? Maybe Viola Davis will go all Judi Dench and win for making the most out of her short screen time.

- Who would give the better acceptance speech: Mickey Rourke or Sean Penn? My mind is set that Rourke would give the speech of the night, but I'm not sure he'll win.

- Will The Curious Case of Benjamin Button finally win a major award or will it continue its 0-300 streak in major award categories?

- Which film is going to win best picture? There are so many different scenarios right now that I have no idea.

The Drama:
- Jennifer Aniston and Angelina Jolie are both expected to attend tonight's Oscars. Jen is presenting and Angelina is nominated. Now, for me this says something. Both women will step up their game in terms of red carpet fashion. Both of them can be boring and wear too much black. I expect both of them to come out with something drop dead gorgeous. I know this might be heresy in some circles, but I think Jen wins the arm candy category. Of course, if Brad Pitt shows up sans facial hair and looking half awake, well then he wins all by himself.

- Did Javier Bardem cancel his appearance (he cited work commitments) because he and Penelope Cruz are no longer dating (or are they still dating?)? Normally, I don't think that would be a big deal, but it could be very awkward considering she is nominated for best supporting actress and he would have been presenting that award. That could have made for a fun encounter on stage.

- Back to Angelina. Will she give death stares to whoever does win best actress? Maybe she's learned how to fake happy since she's lost out on so many awards this season. I really, really, really, really want/expect the camera operator to keep the camera on Angelina when Jen is on stage presenting. The vein on her forehead might pop! That would be a good time for Angelina to head to the ladies room.

- What will Hugh Jackman include in his hosting duties? The man can sing, dance and look attractive with facial hair (a trait that Brad Pitt knows is difficult to pull off). More importantly, will Jackman leave his shirt on for any of his screen time? Or will he just make fun of George Clooney the entire time because George wasn't named Sexiest Man Alive?

- Finally, what with the Fug Girls say about all the fashion? I can't wait for all their posts next week!!!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Notable birthdays for February 20th

February 20th, it's a good day for a birthday.

Enzo Ferrari (1898)
Ansel Adams (1902)
Sidney Poitier (1924)
Robert Altman (1925)
Nancy Wilson (1937)
Roger Penske (1937)
Kelsey Grammer (1955)
Cindy Crawford (1966)
Kurt Cobain (1967)
Robyn Rihanna Fenty (1988)

and although he hasn't done all that much yet, he's adorable Cruz Beckham (2005)

Wow, I am going to have to do something crazy to be included on such an esteemed list. Somehow I don't think just having red hair will suffice.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

I've been a bad blogger

There I said it! Admitting the problem is the first step towards recovery, right? Anyway, I'm a bad blogger because I hardly ever visit other blogs. How is that even possible? Google Reader my friends, I am a complete and total addict. I tend to only comment on blogs that have that cool little feature that allows you to post directly from Google Reader and not have to actually visit the blog.

Pathetic, I know.

In the past week or so I've made it a point to visit every single blog in my Google Reader. I found out that some of you have pretty cool looking blogs. Far advanced from my pitiful attempts to jazz up my own blog. While checking out everyone's blogs I noticed that there are some really cool features out there and I've been missing out on those. I've missed out on the Twitter updates, wish lists, mini Flickr slide shows,intricate blog headers, fantastic blog backgrounds, running mileage, goals, baby charts, etc. The one feature I'm not a fan of is that little stalker widget aka the Life Traffic Feed. That thing creeps me out!!! Okay, not really, but when I see my town listed a few times I make a mental note to stop visiting that blog for a while (which is bad, because I should be visiting more often).

Anyway, I've been a bad blogger and I'm hoping to change. My first step towards change is that I vow to start commenting more often. The reason for doing this is two-fold, I'll actually start viewing all the hard work you put into maintaining your blog and I love reading comments on my own blog, so maybe you like reading them on yours. My next step towards becoming a better blogger is upping the maintenance on my own blog. I know it seems like I took a step backwards, but I changed up my template and went with something much simpler. I know scrapbook inspired blogs are all the rage right now (they are adorable), I realized that I'm a less is more type of person. I like white space and I like black text. Until I decided to ditch that plan, I'll be keeping things simple around here. Plus, I'm going to actually start using the labels feature. Who knows, maybe that might help people find their way around my blog a bit easier (or help myself when I'm trying to find an old post).

To kick things off, I made a new blog header. It isn't perfect, I'm not a fan of how the yellow flourish looks pixelated, but I'm working on it. Who knows, maybe next year I'll take on the challenge and try to code my own little blog template. Or, I could just have my incredibly talented sister come up with something for me, but calling in a professional would be cheating (and she better do it for free!!!)

Anyway, let me know what you think of the changes. Thanks for stopping by!!!!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Has your dog ever...

... jumped onto your coffee table in order to soak up a few extra minutes of sunshine?

Until today, my answer would have been no, but as you can guess where this is going it turns out my answer changed today. Possibly, the answer changed a few days ago, but the hubs decided that since I'm the disciplinarian in the household it was better if I didn't know about Jewels latest odd behavior.

I was completely shocked when I witnessed Jewels examine the living room and deem it completely acceptable to leap onto the coffee table, like it was an every day activity. Normally, I would have freaked out, ushered her off the table and yelled, "NO!" Luckily for Jewels, I was in the midst of a Daniel Day-Lewis marathon (I'm feeling under the weather and laid out on the couch) and my energy levels just weren't into disciplining the dog. Instead, I called up to the hubs and upon seeing Jewels he goes, "oh, she's doing that again."


Now, I know many dogs love soaking up the sun, but from the few other Boston Terrier owners I've talked to, it seems that Bostons dial up the sun exposure to another level. It's like a sixth sense for Bostons. Jax and Jewels are always jockeying for optimal sun exposure whether they are in the house, out in the yard, in the car, etc. Most of the time Jax loses this battle because Jewels will just lay on top of him and force him out of his prime position. It's rather entertaining to see the little dog always win.

I just can't believe my dog thought it was okay to lay on the table! She's a spoiled rotten puppy, but she has some respect for order.

With the flash so you could see that she is clearly laying on the table. Good grief!!!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy V-day!

Whether or not you and yours celebrate V-day, I thought I would express my own well wishes for you. Happy Valentine's Day!

(Those are supposed to be heart shaped pancakes. I swear they tasted better than they looked!)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

What is your design style?

Katie over at Bower Power posted this fun quiz from Sproost. Take a few quick minutes and see what is your design style.

Here are my results:

Modern Elegance: Variety is the spice of life! And nowhere is this truer than in the design of your home. You may love contemporary, but wish it wasn't quite so cold and austere, or perhaps you're drawn to traditional rooms but you'd like to create a less cluttered and busy space. Transitional Style is here to marry those apparent contradicting designs.

And guess what? It's the contradictions that make the mix of contemporary and traditional so successful. The result is an elegant room that appeals to young and old alike. A sofa with modern lines blends seamlessly with a pair of traditional chairs. New fabrics work so well on antique pieces. It turns out that modern art looks even more exciting above a collection of traditional pieces. The room feels simple and sophisticated, elegant and hip.

Yay, I love it!!! Of course this doesn't describe my current home at all, but it does evoke the visions I have for my future home (aka the one where I'm allowed to buy furniture because we aren't renting anymore and the hubs thinks buying new furniture is dumb because we don't know what the future dimensions of our future house will be!).

Anyone love or hate their results???

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Four score and seven years ago...

... the hubs and I had our first date. Well, subtract eighty years from that mark, which leaves us with just seven short years ago. Wow, S-E-V-E-N YEARS!!!!!!!!! That's more than a quarter of my life has been spent with the hubs in some various form.

There were three years and twelve days of dating. An engagement lasting a tad over two and a half years. Finally, that first year and a half of marriage. The funny thing is that if the hubs had it his way, we would have gotten married right after we graduated from college. That would have tacked on another two years to the marriage column. Woah, good thing I politely said, "no!" and told him we were going to have a super long engagement. We're the backwards couple, where the guy is completely ready for marriage and the gal is dragging her feet. I wasn't worried about being married to the hubs, instead it was just a more general freaking out in regards to being married at 22. I still have days where I can't believe I got married before turning 30!

Anyway, last year we ditched our "dating anniversary" since we were now a married couple and had that big "wedding anniversary" to celebrate later in the year. I don't think we would have done anything too far out of the ordinary this year except my super cool brother-in-law gave us a gift card to Fogo de Chão for Christmas. Normally, a gluttony of endless meat is not what I would call a romantic dinner, but since the hubs and I went to Brazil for our honeymoon, a trip to a churrascaria definitely works.

Thursday, February 5, 2009


I committed a cardinal mistake the other day. I accidentally left one of my closet doors open. One of the tenants of our happy marriage is that my hubs should live in a delusional state where he doesn't know the full extent of my shopping indulgences. I fully subscribe to the philosophy of buying something, stuffing it in the closet, waiting a few months and then proudly declaring, "I've had this for months!" Plus, I can buy something cute and cheap at Target and the hubs just thinks we needed new cleaning supplies.

Leaving my closet open is completely inexcusable because it allows my husband to sneak a peak and see if I've done any "unnecessary" shopping. He doesn't go through my closet, but it is in his line of sight as he makes his way to his dresser. Figures, I was guilty and got busted. I haven't purchased anything new in months and then I slip up and get busted once I buy something! Jax and Jewels even helped out and ripped the packaging box to shreds for me. I swear the hubs' senses were heightened by the presence of a new J. Crew catalog. Yes, I'm obsessed, but my closet is a constant reminder of how deep my love for all things J. Crew runs.

My latest guilty addition- a new dress. Which of course the hubs had to ask, "so when are you wearing this new dress?" My reply that I didn't plan on wearing it until August didn't fly too well with the hubs. Of course once he saw the tag and said, "another dress from J.Crew??? How many dresses do you need?"

Gesh, the guy complains that I only wear black dresses and he gives me a hard time when I buy a dress in a different color. Talk about sending mixed messages. I think he just protests at the J. Crew dresses more than the rest because he thinks they are more expensive. In theory, he would be correct, but I hardly ever buy anything at full price.

I tried explaining to the hubs that I could wear said new dress multiple times and that it was on sale. His response, "really... wait, isn't the same rational you've given for every dress purchase you make?" Crap, that line worked for almost seven years, but it seems I need to come up with a new one.

I was almost out of the woods until I was flipping through a catalog and said, "oh, that's a new material." The hubs quickly looked over and said, "no! You're not going to buy a new dress just because it's a different material than the rest of them." That's when it hit me, I do have a J. Crew dress in almost every fabric! Crap.

Silk chiffon- Sophia in bright blue. Purchased last week for $34.99. Yes, extra 30% off of final sale price. Go me!!! Plan to wear to the hubs' best friend's wedding on August 1st. I can see myself wearing this dress again and again and again. Honestly, I've wanted the Sophia dress since I was a senior in college. My plan is buy a navy one in silk tricotine. I'm just buying time now that I've been caught.

Silk tricotine- Rebecca in black. Purchased two weeks ago. This is the bridesmaid dress for my sister's wedding. J. Crew had a 20% off final sale and the rest of the bridesmaids were able to get their dresses for $66 each. Unfortunately, J. Crew didn't have my size, but I was able to buy it on Ebay for $40.

Cotton cady- Audrey in wild rose. Purchased in 2006 as my maid of honor dress for best friend's wedding. Confession, I paid full price. I think it was $225, but I needed the dress and would buy it again in a heartbeat for my girl's wedding. I've worn it twice since then. It looks fantastic with a white cardigan I have, which is also from J. Crew.

Silk faille- Whitney in ivory. Purchased on sale (maybe $60ish, not really sure) as my rehearsal dinner dress in 2007. I love this dress, it has this gorgeous tulle underskirt that creates a great shape. Unfortunately, it's an ivory dress and that's something I don't wear too often. So this poor baby sulks in the back of my closet, begging me to get over my fear of spilling something on it.

Next on my list is the adorable cotton poplin Sydney dress.
It is available in navy, so maybe I'll give up on the Sophia and buy this little gem instead.

Thank goodness I left my dresser shut and the hubs didn't see the new jeans I also purchased with the Sophia dress. Hey, they were on sale!!!

Monday, February 2, 2009

For all the animal lovers out there

I grew up with only large dogs. Besides those adorable months when our dogs were puppies, I think the smallest dog I ever had was a 50lb English Springer Spaniel. Back then, you didn't see many large dogs sporting sweaters or at least not in upstate New York. Actually, I think the only dog I knew that routinely wore a sweater was Bart, my grandpa's Wire Fox Terrier. Bart had an extensive clothing collection, he had a different sweater for every day of the week plus multiple wardrobes per state (he migrated between Florida and New York with my grandpa).

It wasn't until Jewels went outside and shivered for the first time that the hubs and I discussed puppy clothes. Now, I have a tendency to ogle over sweaters anytime I can. Over the weekend I made the mistake of searching Etsy for sweaters. What turned into a quick search ended up being an hour of "ohhhing and ahhhing." I think it's a safe bet that next year I'm going to order a bunch of sweaters off of Etsy and skip Pet Co.

Go to Etsy and search for your breed. Cuteness overload. Granted, the majority of dog sweaters can be ordered in any size, but I just like looking at all the cute Bostons. I'm sure your breed will have plenty of eye-candy. I absolutely fell in love with a few items and many of them weren't sweaters!

A few of my personal favorites:

both from seller Beantown Handmade (my new favorite seller!)

from seller Chetart

from seller tedwards52

from seller rubenacker