Monday, March 19, 2012

Why Does It Have To Be Black OR White?

I love sparkly things, as most women do.  It's not surprising that when I set my eyes on the beauty below, that I completely fell in love.  I laid eyes on my new love at The Menagerie, 1601 West 38th St, #7 Jefferson Square, Austin, TX  78731. www.themenagerie.com  Vickie Roan is the owner and she is fabulous!  If you aren't completely versed in diamonds, she is more than happy to explain the ABCs of all things sparkly. 

Perfectly good motivation to work hard and make bonus, if you ask me! 

Flower Power

Spring has sprung!  At my parents house this past weekend, I was able to see the gorgeous wildflowers that are blooming in the field in front of their home and in the garden.  Stunning!  Below are a few pics I took.  Enjoy!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Mind Your Manners

My sister is expecting her first baby and is due in late summer/early fall.  Super exciting!  I was fortunate enough to recently go with her for a doctor appointment and see an ultrasound.  The whole experience was amazing!  The baby thing is new for me and I definitely need a learning curve.  I feel like I don't know the right things to say and inadvertently offend my sister.  For instance, while watching the ultrasound, all I could say was "how weird," "that's so weird" and "oh my gosh!"

After some thinking, I realized I should check my Emily Post's Etiquette book for info.  Below are a couple of pointers from "Emily Post's ETIQUETTE, 18th Edition, Manners For A New World,"  by Peggy Post, Anna Post, Lizzie Post, Daniel Post Senning. 

  • Tell the couple how happy you are to hear their good news.
  • Offer to help out when you can, especially as it gets closer to the baby's arrival.
  • Avoid asking personal questions that may put the mother or the couple on the spot:
    • Have you been trying long?
    • You look quite big.  Is the baby due soon?
    • Do you know who the father is?  (That's my personal favorite!  Seriously, why would you EVER ask someone that?  Ha!)
Lastly, "don't just assume someone is pregnant and ask, 'When are you due?'"  Um, haven't enough people stuck their foot in their mouth and made this mistake?  Who on earth would still ask that?!? 

Anywho, while Emily Post didn't have much advice for me this time, I have learned that taking special care in choosing my words wisely when discussing a pregnancy, new baby or children, is the best bet.  Upsetting a hormonal pregnant woman is NEVER a good idea!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Stiffler's Mom

(Thanks Hulu.com for the pic.)
When American Pie came out in 1999, I was rather young in high school.  My parents were uber strict on the movies I was allowed to see, so I had to wait until it came out on HBO.  (Of course I had to sneak and watch it when they weren't home.)  I like the movie, thought it was funny, but it wasn't necessarily a "cult classic" for me.

American Pie 2 was a different story.  It was released just before I moved away to college.  I could choose my own movies, go with whom I wanted and wasn't asked too many questions by the parentals.  I completely associate this movie with leaving the nest, experiencing new found freedom and not to sound too cheesy, it's a bit "coming of age" for me.

When I first saw the preview of American Reunion, all the good feelings and excitment came rushing back.  Is it nuts that I am soooooo excited to see this movie?  April 6th cannot get here soon enough!  Stiffler's Mom, Band Camp Girl or Jim's failed sexual exploits - I am totally hoping this will be another hysterically relatable and ridiculous moving about growing up.  Which is exactly what I need since I'm TIRED of being a grown up!

(Moviehole.net, thanks for the pic.)

Health Kick - Food, Part 2

For a pseudo healthy snack, get the low fat butter microwave popcorn.  Once popped, spray with olive oil pan spray and lightly toss with ranch salad dressing mix.  YUMMMMM!!!

Thursday, March 15, 2012


In college, my best friend and I purchased our wine based on the cheapest price and highest alcohol content.  You would think that this many years after college I would have evolved past that method of wine selection, but yeh, that hasn't really changed.  I recently found the wine on sale at HEB.  It was in th $5-6 range, sale price.  It was great!  Very smooth, with mild earthy undertones.  Even regularly priced, it still a great deal.  Check it out!

Health Kick - Food, Part 1

Last year I gave up meat for lent so in an attempt to find alternate forms of protein, I bought a box of Near East Pearled Couscous Mix, Roasted Garlic & Olive Oil.  There is a recipe on the back for Taboule Salad with Pearled Couscous.  I FINALLY tried it tonight, and have a few thoughts.  The recipe isn't online, so I've included it below.  (Sorry Near East if you don't like that.)

Prep Time:  30 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes

1 package Near East Pearled Couscous Roasted Garlic & Olive Oil
1 tablespoon olive oil
1-3/4 cups water
3 bunches parsley, washed & chopped - If you put all the parsley in a food processor, don't use all of it.  It is WAY too much!
3/4 cup scallions, sliced 1/8 inch wide - I couldn't find scallions so I substituted red onions, flavor was probably a bit too strong. 
2 lemons juiced
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon mint, chopped
pinch of salt and black pepper

1.  In medium saucepan, combine water and olive oil.  Bring to a boil.
2.  Add Pearled Couscous and Spice Sack and stir thoroughly.  Bring back to boil  .
3.  Simmer at a medium boil for 8 to 14 minutes uncovered until pasta is tender and most of the water has evaporated (a very small amount of water should remain).  Stir occasionally.  Turn off heat.
4.  Let stand covered 4 to 5 minutes.
5.  Transfer couscous to bowl and toss to cool.
6.  Toss with remaining ingredients.  Chill for 20 minutes before serving. 

5 Servings (1 cup each)

For a first attempt, it was good, but WAY too much parsley.  I had it with baked salmon, a salad and of course red wine.