My Life is an Episode of Modern Family

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Have I told you this story before?  I’m sure I have but I am too lazy to look in my archives.  I do this in real life too — tell the same stories over and over again — so listen this is just what it would be like in real life, ok?

Oh, before I tell you this story — HAPPY FREAKING FRIDAY!  Man is it just me or has this week felt long?  Also contributing to my end of week super-sloth-ness, we hosted friends for dinner last night (hooray for mid-week dinner parties!) and while it was so much fun: we stayed up too late, I enjoyed one too many cocktails, and this morning my alarm sounded like a sledgehammer to the head.  Can you believe when I was going to bed last night I actually had the audacity to say “Hmm…should I set the alarm for 4:30 am so I can get a run in at the gym before work?” 

BAHAHAHAHAHAHAH…snoooooooooooooooze. 

(Balance is not a concept I really understand, YET.) 

Anyway, so back to my story.  The one you have probably heard, yes.  You see Garrett and I do not fight very much.  Sure we disagree about things, but we’re generally good at coming to a resolution without much fanfare which is why I don’t have many raucous tales of mug shot worthy disputes on this blog and just like the cliche, we rarely go to bed angry.  I kind of like it this way, actually.  But about 6 months ago not only did I spent the entire evening pissed and sobbing at Garrett, but I also went to bed at like 8pm — AND I WENT TO BED ANGRY — alert the press!  At the time I think Garrett found it the most befuddling because he could not figure out what he did wrong. It was very much this exact scene  from Modern Family.  Frankly, we are Phil and Claire.   Well, actually Garrett is just Phil.  I mean the resemblance is just uncanny at times.


So, what made me so angry?  Let me tell you:  he took every single book off of all 3 of my beautiful (and quite obviously, in my opinion) ORGANIZED BY COLOR Billy bookcases in our guest bedroom.  And when I came home he nonchalantly said, ”Oh, I decided to reorg the bookcases since there was no rhyme or reason to them.”  Actually he didn’t say ‘reorg’ because that would be lame, but the truth is, I didn’t hear much of what he said after I walked into my the room that once housed my BEAUTIFULLY ORGANIZED BY COLOR books and saw them strewn about all over the floor.  Hours of work now just tossed about into piles (gasp!) organized by authors’ names.

Something about this just made me so incredibly upset, but I think no one was more upset than Garrett, who just kept waiting for Ashton Kutcher to show up and tell him he was being Punk’d.  That never happened though, and I just went to bed crying.  My god, again, sometimes my melodrama seems so LAME the morning after.  Anyway, it has now become something we laugh at because, really?  How can you not.  But we have also established the importance of hereinafter all books being organized by color, so you know:  Duh! Winning! and all of that crap.

So!  All of this to say, Modern Family rules.  And this video kind of turns me on:

Happy Friday, Friends!&

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Monday Musings: First World Problems Edition

I’m feeling annoyed today, and because it is Monday that is increasing it ten-fold.  Therefore, I must vent:

Complaint #1:  Bank of America Sucks Donkey Balls
I have done my banking there since 1996, and have pretty much hated them since the inception of our relationship for one reason or another, though I’m not sure there is a banking establishment out there that I would truly love.  It just kind of is what it is, and I stay because it is a pain to move everything.  HOWEVER, I recently received a random envelope in the mail from them saying “Hey, here’s a new debit card because your info was potentially compromised.  Totally our bad, sorry about that.”  And there were three main things that really irked me about the situation:  1)  WTF?  Potentially compromised?  The nonchalance of the letter was irritating.  2)  The card had a new number (obvs) but I had my old one memorized — which proved very convenient when making online purchases at new retailers — no need to dig through my wallet!  and 3)  Do you know how many things I have automatically debit out of my account?  About a million — netflix, the gym, student loan payments…yada, yada, yada…you get it.  But let’s just say in the last 3 weeks I have gotten a lot of “Something is wrong with your credit card” emails and phone calls (including a “Collections” call from 24 Hour Fitness complete with a rude ass girl on the other line demanding payment) and I would really like to just punch Bank of America in the stomach each time I have to deal with it.  

Complaint # 2:  Yahoo! You Are Dead to Me
So about a week ago I tried to sign into my Yahoo! account and got an irritating error message.  I sent the appropriate complaint and received a canned response of “We’re working on it!”  And then I waited.  And sent another complaint.  And got another canned response. And waited.  And got an email with a ticket #.  And waited.  I don’t know what the hell they are working on but after more than a week I still can not check my mother-loving email.  And for someone who checks their email probably 30 times a day this is…oh, how do you say…UNFUCKINGACCEPTABLE!  Everything comes to that email address.  EVERYTHING.  Obviously I am going to have to move on to another address (especially after googling this problem and reading about people who have been dealing with it for over a year…um, no) but again, now I have to figure out by trial and error exactly what I need to update.  Also, it means until Yahoo! fixes the problem everything stored in that account (aka future travel itineraries, groupons, contacts, etc) are gone.  GONE.  Ugh, the thought of it all kind of makes me ill.  I think Yahoo! and Bank of America may be in cahoots.

Complaint #3:  I miss the skin on my hands and knees
So Garrett and I joined a CrossFit Gym about a month ago (the nasty call from the 24 Hour Fitness Rep ended up being the perfect time to cancel our old gym membership…HA! Take that, bitchy chick.) and really I have loved every minute since, you know aside from the blisters on my hands and the rug burn (Yes, I injured myself doing modified push ups.  Awesome).  The first month you spend 3 days per week learning technique and most of the lifts and then do an abbreviated workout.  Abbreviated.  Yet I have pretty much been sore everyday since we joined.  So last Friday we finished our course and now I guess we get to join the rest of the folks and do the real workouts, and honestly I feel a little freaked out about it.  Sometimes I find the warm ups a challenge (embarrassing as that is to admit) so the thought of an entire 40-60 minute workout is freaking me out a bit.  I just went online and looked at our WOD for tonight and HOLY SHIT.  Now I have 10 hours to try and figure out how the hell one modifies a handstand push up.  OHMYGOD.

I think I will leave it at my top 3 complaints because, really, that is probably enough.  I don’t want to get on a roll or I will never shut up and I don’t need to start this day with a downward spiral in attitude.  

What’s bugging you this Monday?  You know you want to vent.

Whatever Happened to Macauley Culkin Anyway?

I recently had to stop watching Criminal Minds and if I’m being honest, I’m still mourning the loss of some regular Shemar Moore action.  He is a fox, and if I had one of those celebrity freebie lists, he’d totally be on it but I long ago decided those lists were not for Garrett and I you see, because Garrett has poor celebrity judgment.  The only evidence I ever need to present is the fact that before we started dating he had Lindsay Lohan posters adorning his walls — IN THE LIVING ROOM.  Um, case closed.  Granted, that was back in 2004 pre-rehab and she was pretty cute, but still.  I think we can all agree that based on that information Garrett is NEVER allowed a celebrity freebie, so obviously it’s only fair that I refrain myself.  

I used to get my Shemar fix almost nightly watching old reruns but our rendezvous ( wait – how do you make that word plural?) eventually had to come to an end because of my house.  You see my house is old — old and creaky and did  you know old creaky houses make noises when the temperature changes?  Well they do, and because I have watched way too many episodes of Criminal Minds I can tell you that my house makes the exact noises that a prowler would make if he were slyly shuffling on our hardwood floors.  My old, creaky house also makes the exact noises that a crazy rapist serial killer would make if there were one living in my attic.  And they say television isn’t educational!  The point is watching Criminal Minds was not helping me relax at the end of a long day, so I had to call it quits.  But I miss it desperately! 

Speaking of desperately missing, Garrett is in New Mexico for 11 days visiting his parents and I can count on one hand how many times we have slept apart for that long in our 5 year relationship.  I know that sounds terribly Liza Minelli/David Guest, but it’s the truth.  Sure we do weekends away from each other a lot, or overnighters here and there, we’re not total psychos, but this is like A WHOLE WEEK LONGER THAN THAT. To say it has disrupted my routine is not surpring.  With no kids and no pets, coming home and downloading my day to the artwork hanging on the walls just isn’t quite as validating you know?  There’s no one waiting for me at home to have dance parties to bad 90s music or to throw steaks on the grill so when I pull into the driveway our whole yard smells delicious.  The vibe is a little different and I am vacillating between acting like a total single gal and feeling sorry for myself.  Consequently I have also watched like 900 episodes of Who’s the Boss – I’m not sure if that counts as acting single or feeling sorry for myself, but at least it’s been quite entertaining.  That was a good show and I miss those kinds of happy family comedies.  When does Modern Family come back on, by the way?  Anyway, as you can probably imagine all of this alone time has helped me harness my inner-spaz so tightly that I am now so afraid of every little creak in the house that I may officially qualify as medically paranoid.  Which is why waking up this morning to find a man with a mask on and chainsaw in my backyard was more than a little unpleasant. 

Apparently this man  was just there to cut down a portion of my next door neighbors’ dying tree that was hanging in our backyard but I will let you know that was of little consequence for a multitude of reasons, including:  A) DUDE IT WAS SEVEN IN THE MORNING and B) IT WAS A STRANGE MAN IN A MASK WITH A CHAINSAW.  I had let myself hit the snooze a few times — mostly because I had woken up no less than 5 times throughout the night certain there was a masked man in my kitchen — but instead of that enjoying that extra sleep time and waking rested and refreshed I was startled awake by the sound of Leatherface outside our bedroom sliding glass door.  Oh City of Sacramento, had I wanted that much adrenaline before 8am I would have just added a shot to my Go Girl, mmmkay?  Please take note. 

So pre-coffee sparring with Leatherface aside, I had actually made a plan of how I was going to enjoy this time while Garrett was away.  Determined to not spend my evenings at home alone counting my heart palpitations, I had committed to a vigorous workout and socializing schedule which was fine in theory, but pretty much blew up in practice last night.  When I got to my weightlifting class yesterday all the platforms, weight bars, and dumbbells were taken, even though I was 15 minutes early.  Jerks!  I love that class and I had actually been excited to workout only to be totally dissed by a room full of spandex clad cougars.  There I was stuck at the gym with no iPod to speak of, on a treadmill, parked in front of the only TV showing Bill O’Reilly of all things.  Every other TV had nice normal gym programming like The Food Network, and I get Bill Effing O’Reilly.  I will save you the suspense and tell you that my workout did not last long and I went home feeling a bit dejected, mostly because that was supposed to take up a good hour and a half — what with working out and then showering afterward – and instead I got home about 30 minutes after I left and I hadn’t even broken a sweat.  At least my package from Amazon.com had arrived while I was gone so it wasn’t a total bust.  

Tonight I think I’m going to try working out again (I will bring my iPod for backup just in case) and I was hoping to then have a leisurely night catching up on my DVR, but when I stopped home for lunch this afternoon I discovered my cable AND my internet were out. 

No cable.  And No Internet. 

You know what this means, right?  There is a high probability that tonight it will just be me and the house. 

Home Alone.

And well, I think this pretty much sums up my feeling on that: 

You Take the Good, You Take the Bad

It’s amazing how one little list  can put some new pep in your step!  All of a sudden I have purpose!  (I know, I’m a little crazy, but I like to think that’s part of why you love me, yes?)  I swear my life motto should be:  If you want something done ask someone busy — because the more I put on my plate the more I get done.  There is no lazier Holly than a Holly with nary a thing to do, trust me.  I have the ability to take more than 2 naps in a day (naps, people!) I have no problem doing lazy.  Now I realize this philosophy is somewhat dependent on inertia, which is sort of counter productive since one actually has to stop sometimes, but today we’re not here to talk about my flawed life logic we’re here to talk about successes and well, of course, immediate failures.

So I’ve been tackling all sorts of things around here and one of the  first things I did was plan all my meals this week according to a strategy I call Operation: Fridge Cleanout.  Generally when I plan meals I sit down with Garrett and we talk about what fabulous concoctions we’d like for dinner the following week and grocery shop from there.  It’s not always the most efficient for the groceries we have on hand, but hey, it works.  However, since I’m “attempting” to wrangle my grocery budget to under $400 this month (which I realize may sound like a ridiculous amount to some of you since there are only two of us, but hey I’ve got to start somewhere)  I thought it might be smarter to actually see what meals we can make from the items we have on hand before writing my grocery list.  And we did.  And guess what? No need to go to the store, we have everything we need right on hand!  So success this week goes to our July Week One Meal Plan:

(Apparently our dinner menu is also an advertisement for Sierra Nevada Products.  Not really sure what to say about that besides, uh…YUM.)
So…Success, right?  Dinner menu with no need to go to the grocery store…WOO!  
Except…you knew there was an except, right?
Except last night we went to Trader Joe’s (which you can file under ‘M’ for My Own Personal Kryptonite) to get a few little treats.  Is their any better place to go for treats?  The only product masquerading as dessert in our house right now is some freezer burned rainbow sherbert and a bag of cherries, and although we don’t eat dessert every night religiously you must agree with me that this is a Dessert Crisis of Epic Proportions, right?  You Must.  Anyway, so we went to TJ’s to pick up two specific things:  Chocolate Covered Raisins (For Her) and Strawberry Licorice (For Him). 
And instead we did this:  
That, my friends, you can file under ‘E’ for Epic Fail.

So, I appreciate you reserving judgment on the two bottles of $5.99 Prosecco.  I don’t know what to tell you about that, or this whole receipt for that matter, except to say it was a momentary lack of all control.  But at the time it seemed like we needed all the items!  After all we are out of Pine Nuts, which I like to have stashed in our freezer, Honey, which I use on greek yogurt for breakfast or lunch.  My almond butter was getting low and plus, the TJ’s brand — has Flax Seeds!  And for half the price of my regular grocery store!  The General Tsao’s Stir Fry sauce is AH-MAY-ZING (so is the chili pepper sauce, hence the two bottles of those), and last night we sadly discovered they were out of it (until two aisles later when we found two bottles randomly lying about so OF COURSE we bought them both!)  The Trail Mix and Nut Aisle is always a challenge for Garrett so he picked up a few more “treats” since we hardly ever hit up Trader Joe’s so those were easy to rationalize.  The black bean dip is because we have a giant bag of tortilla chips leftover from making nachos last week and who eats tortilla chips plain?  Plus, $1.69?  That’s practically giving it away!  Veggie corndogs are cheap at TJ’s so I always stock up when I’m there.  Who doesn’t need an extra bag of Penne on hand (and our pasta stash was getting low).  The Bacon we incorporated into last nights Breakfast for Dinner (and damn it was good, no regrets on that!) and the string cheese?  WHAT KIND OF PERSON SAYS NO TO STRING CHEESE?  A COMMUNIST, I TELL YOU.  COMMUNIST!  Ok, so the mini hamburger buns?  Well, those I’ll admit were an impulse buy — they were just too cute to pass up. Sliders, anyone?

So as you can see, each and ever purchase was a total necessity, I mean come on. Necessity.   The $75 out of my $400 grocery budget on the 6th day of the month, however?  Well, it remains to be seen what the consequences of that will be for that goal.  You win some, you lose some.

Sometimes I do NOT enjoy being a girl….

So yesterday we had another company come out to give us a second opinion on our House A/C Situation.   As I mentioned recently, the last guy from a Very Reputable Company came out and basically said our A/C was dunzo, which on the eve of summer in Sacramento is like being sentenced to the death penalty. 

The incident went down something like this since Garrett was out of town:

Holly:  Our heater wouldn’t turn on all winter and we are now worried our A/C is up to no good as well, although we haven’t tried to turn it on.

Very Reputable A/C Guy:  Well let me do some checking, I’ll be back.

(After about 30 minutes)

H:  So, how did it go?

VRACG:  Here let me draw you a picture and speak to you with lots of big words you will only kind of understand. 

H:  OK

VRACG:  Blah, Blah, Blah, and in the end, I’m not saying you have to get a new A/C System, but you kind of have to get a new A/C System.  Have your boyfriend call me if he wants me to break the situation down for him too.   

*****Cue Panic******

So then yesterday Mr. New Repairman from This Other Company comes out to give a second opinion.  Although he doesn’t know he is our second opinion.  And rather than dealing with me, he deals with Garrett — and when I say “deals with Garrett” I mean spends an hour and a half diagnosing and tinkering and cleaning and servicing and ALLOWING GARRETT TO STAND ON A LADDER WHILE HE DOES THINGS ON OUR ROOF BECAUSE GARRETT IS CURIOUS HOW EVERYTHING WORKS, and then answers ninety billion of Garrett’s very mechanical questions that were relevant to the sitiuation. 

And this guy’s verdict:  There’s nothing wrong.  

Um…wha??????  Nothing?  Like at all?

Nothing.

Two very different answers, and two very different situations.  

One is offering the death penalty, the other is offering an all expense paid trip to the Bahamas.  And I’m feeling sort of vexed by the whole situation.  

COOL THINGS:  

*Um, you know which guy we are going to listen to right?
*The second opinion made sense and was very thorough.
*And most importantly, after a quick cleaning, both the A/C and the Heat are now working like a charm.

THINGS I’M KIND OF ANNOYED ABOUT:

*According to the First Opinion, yes the A/C is technically working, but we are living on “borrowed time” which of course gives me anxiety, but not enough to run out spend $8K just in case, you know?
*Um, did I just totally get worked by Mr. First Opinion?
*Here let me answer that for you.  Yes, I think I totally just got worked by Mr. First Opinion.

I don’t know if all of you will feel me on this, but sometimes in my experience as a female, if I have to have something serviced or repaired I totally get the run around.  I’m not saying I expect it, because I really give people the benefit of the doubt, but I have seriously had some shady situations go down (especially surrounding car problems) that just NEVER happen when Garrett takes the car in or whatever.  It’s annoying, but I’m not going to lie, it’s also kind of fun to let someone go through the process of trying to give you the run around, just to turn around and let them know that you know what the hell you are talking about.  Take, for example:  Many years ago, in my single days, I had actually just picked my car up from having the break pads replaced and went to get my oil changed (which, was obvs my dream day of errand running I’ll have you know)  and the oil change guy gave me a line about how my transmission was all effed up and my break pads really probably needed some attention, but he could handle that for me at the low price of $149.99 or something ridiculous.  Actually, I’m not sure if it was exactly those things, because now that I think about it why would an oil guy be looking at my break pads, but it was somebody looking at my break pads and telling me they were shot even though I HAD JUST HAD THEM CHANGED SO SHUT IT YOU LYING LIAR FACE, DUDE!  Wanna see my receipt, because here it is on the passenger seat you idiot.  

This happens more often than I would like, I find, but I am really having a hard time wrapping my head around the idea that this A/C guy would really take advantage of me!  He was so nice to me!  And my mom, who was also there!  How can you want to take advantage of my mom, too?  Grrrrr. 

Well, come to find out, after a long drawn out discussion about an A/C Unit last night (Hey-O, kind of like this blog post!)  apparently, when Garrett called him (as you will remember the A/C guy TOLD ME TO HAVE GARRETT DO) Mr. A/C was a little put off and defensive and kind of evaded all of Garrett’s questions (which, honestly, Garrett does ask a lot of questions about mechanical things, I know this – but um, that’s why I’m pretty sure HE CAN FIX SHIT, which, indicidentally is not my thing.  But hey I have other things!  I can write diatribes on fixing shit on the internet, so there!)  And this sort of gave Garrett a feeling that we really needed that second opinion, which, in the end I’m super glad we got.  But still, the whole thing is just sort of vexing — I mean yes, it’s good news.  But also, I feel sort annoyed about the whole damn thing. 

I bet you all can’t wait to hear about our dealings with landscapers!

Car Talk

I drive a car that is 19 years old (Toyota Cressida, FTW!) and Garrett drives a car that is 12 years old (a Subaru Legacy that is immaculate because my boyfriend is nothing if not anal about everything in his life up to and including his vehicles). Because of this we have had some serious flexibility with our budget over the past 3 years. Having no car payment has been PHENOMENAL and I highly recommend it to others! Many of you smarties have probably known that for ages, but what can I say?  I’m slow on the uptake when it comes to smart financial decisions so it took me a few years to figure that out.

Before this I’d had a car payment since I was 17 and never really thought anything of it. It was a car – you have to have one right? Why not finance it! Partly reinforcing this ridiculous assumption was the few years I spent living in Los Angeles, which is otherwise known as the capital of Expensive Cars One Can’t Really Afford. Seriously you meet people down there who are renting dumpy studios and driving $80,000 cars – it is unreal! As such I purchased two cars during that period of time, but who’s judging!  Anyway, all this to say I never really thought too much of it and just kept financing new cars when I got tired of the old ones. The excitement of a new car was addicting – and especially during those LA Years in my 20s, there was just nothing better than cruising down to the beach in my cute little ride, blaring my Blink-182 or whoever, and having no worries!


About 5 years into having my last car (and the towards the end of my 20s, no coincidence I’m sure) I started to think about what life was going to be like when I no longer had the payment. My very reliablie and very cute Honda Civic was still awesome and I started to have visions of C-note covered sugar plums dancing in my head.  A cute car AND an extra $300 every month to spend however I pleased was impending AWESOMENESS. A month into summer, however, I was on my way to pick up Garrett so we could head out of town for a family cabin retreat in the woods and some JERK OFF made a turn in front of me when he did not have the right of way and did this to my cute and reliable Civic that was 3 months from being paid off. (Sigh)


Civic


He also made the 3 cases of beer that I had just purchased in preparation for that vacation spew out all over the place — and let me tell you that was a bit awkward when the cops showed up– but whatever, that wasn’t what I was pissed about at the time. The accident hurt my body, but even more painful was that it hurt my financial plans. I was now in a position to have to buy another new car and take on another loan – and it wasn’t even my fault!


Enter Garrett, my knight in shining armor – and of course his grandma who had just given him her old 1991 Toyota Cressida (that only had 50,000 miles on it at the time – are you serious?) He decided to let me use it until we came up with a plan about buying a new car and 3 years later, I’m still driving it.  Mostly because– hello! not paying for a car every month kicks GINORMOUS ASS! It was even better than I had imagined! I have spent the last 3 years paying off debt, throwing money at my student loans hand over fist, traveling and saving more than ever possible with the car payment. Even though the payment was technically only about $300, the bigger payoff came in that fact that it really changed my entire financial mindset about material things. What else was I paying for every month that felt like a “necessity” that I could totally be more responsibly frugal about?


Of course driving an older car isn’t all roses and sunshine — there has definitely been more things to fix here and there. We have put some large sums of money into that car over the last 3 years, but when you do the math it has been NOTHING compared to what 3 years of a car payment would have been. Last week it was in the shop because we are trying to have the A/C fixed in preparation for another sweltering summer in Sacramento (joy!) and because it is so old and takes R12 Freon, we are going to have to spend even more time and money finding someone who can still fix it in the State of California, so that is lame but I still contend it is worth it. However on Friday when Garrett took me to pick up the Cressida at the shop, as we were caravanning home he called to tell me that his car was showing signs of Radiator problems and we needed to turn around to take his car back to the shop.


And really, my only thought in that moment was, YOU’VE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME.


So back we went and there was some talk about it probably being a blown head gasket, and everyone had an uncomfortable chuckle about the timing of it all and now today we are waiting to hear the fate of the Subaru. The head gasket issue would be very pricy to fix and who knows if we will.  Even though Garrett’s car is the newer car it has about 70,000 more miles on it than the Cressida so part of me thinks we don’t need Garrett’s car. But I’m not a total loon, and the thought of having a 20 year old car being our “more reliable car” or our only car puts my little brain into a tizzy.


Neither is really feasible.  And so, we wait. Will we buy a new car or won’t we?  Only time will tell!


The funny thing is I am not even a little bit excited at the prospect of buying a car this time around. Especially now that Garrett is not really working full time, I’m not dying to add any new monthly expenses. New car smell, or even a reasonably priced newer used-car just isn’t getting me as twitterpated as it has in the past. I am perfectly content just getting where I need to go in one of our older, paid for cars and I don’t want to be forced to take on a new loan just for a shiny, new hunk of immediately depriciating metal. UGH.  It really bums me out just to type all of that.  Ironically, I  think Blink-182 may have said it best:  I guess this is growing up.

Passion Pit, Peroxide Yarmulkes, and Pictures

Is it just me or have any of you all looked at your calendar lately and said to yourself “Where the hell has April gone?”  My god, I looked at my calendar last night wondering about the next time I would have a moment of down time all to myself and had to actually flip it to the month of May.  Sigh…Weren’t we just talking about New Year’s Resolutions? 

This isn’t a bad thing though, I swear.  In fact even though this week is going to fly by, it is full of Super!  Fun!  Things!  Including a Wednesday night show in Davis to see Passion Pit (yay!) and then on Friday, we are Seattle Bound!  I may even end up doing laundry somewhere in there too otherwise Seattle better get ready to see my in my wrinkled best.  I figure this will be acceptable though because if people look at me funny I will just say I’m making a pilgramage to the capital of grunge!  Although this time around I will wear much less plaid than I did in the 90s.  And of course I’ll be sure to make sure my lipstick doesn’t make me look like I’ve been sucking on a tailpipe.  You’ve got to draw the line somewhere you know.

seattle-skyline-night

And among all of the touristy things I plan to do I assure you that I most certainly do plan to fight fellow tourists at Kerry Park for pictures of that view.  Hell, I may even wear a fanny pack and a camera around my neck while I’m at it — what of it?

(Excuse me while I take a minute to stop laughing my ass off because I am having a gay old time visualizing myself in an awful plaid shirt, wrinkly jeans, and Dr. Martens, while I also strap on a fanny pack and sling a camera around my neck.  This trip is going to be awesome!  Maybe I will just do some laundry.  There’s a thought. )

Anyway — digression, apparently is my middle name!  So we will be there for a long weekend and I have made a spreadsheet of all the places I want to go because I am a giant nerd like that and have come to realize that instead of 4 days, we need about 40. People, there are 47 restaurants on my list.  FORTY SEVEN.  Not sure how to reconcile that just yet, but I can tell you this much — I told Garrett he needs to pack layers and his appetite! The weather looks to be pretty nice and of course we will get to visit some fabulous people, so I basically can’t wait for that! GOD I CAN’T WAIT FOR THAT. 

The only downer is that I anticipate taking about 970 billion pictures, and I sort of hate my haircut right now.  I wish I could say my hairdresser is to blame, but actually she is the most adorable thing on the planet and gave the exact cut that I asked for — I just um…well…don’t love it.  So yeah there’s that.  But I keep trying to remind myself that this haircut is not that bad.  After all it is nothing like the time I went to see my old hairdresser in Los Angeles for a cut and I walked out with a peroxide yarmulke.  A YARMULKE OF PEROXIDE….let that sink in for a minute.  My lesson after that incident was if a hairdresser ever says that you should go a little bit “avante garde” turn and run the other direction.    

So yeah, this hair is not that bad.  It’s short and has bangs.  Big whoop, there is no peroxide and no yarmulke, so I will live.  But it probably means that I will take plenty of pictures of the adorable looking patio that we will have outside of the condo that we are staying in instead of me!  Whatever.  We’ll see what happens.   I mean if all else fails and I run out things to photograph, I will just start taking pictures of meals we eat because you know there will be no shortage of opportunities there. 

Tuesday is the hardest day…

Tuesday is the hardest day of the week, I’m convinced. 

Monday — while definitely a shock to the system after a long weekend has an element of renewal to it.  It’s a new week! And I find the entire week full of possibilities to be a little exciting.  Granted sometimes I find that exciting through squinty tired eyes, but it’s still exciting!

Wednesday — yes, it’s humpday, and I know people argue that this is the hardest day, but to me this is like hitting the summit — you are halfway there!  Celebrate!  So I don’t find Wednesday unmanagable…besides, Wednesday has it’s perks.  Dude, I know that is hella old but it still makes me laugh. 

Thursday — I have two words for you:  Baby Friday.  Sure Thursday can be a slog, but you are so close to Friday you can taste it.  The anticipation is insane, the weekend is so close!

And Friday — if you don’t love the release of Friday, I think you may be a robot.  Friday is the gateway to the weekend, and although I am more inclined these days to go home and unwind with a glass of wine on my couch rather than heading out to get EXTREME, I still love a good Friday night and it is the absolute highlight of my week. 

Saturday — Bliss.

Sunday — Errands and more Bliss.

So what the hell does Tuesday have going for it?  Nothing, I tell you!  Nothing!

And now, in case you need something to laugh about today too because it’s a long ass Tuesday with no light at the end of the tunnel I give you this: (apropos of absolutely nothing)

   

nintendo

Happy Tuesday Peeps!

Counting on The Monte Cristo

So I mentioned in my last post that we made breakfast reservations here during our trip to San Diego.  Part of me thought to myself, “Uh…Reservations? For Breakfast? PSHAW!” But in the end I caved to the pretentiousness because, as you may or may not know, breakfast is my absolute favorite meal when it comes to dining out.  No contest. Sure I love lunching with the best of ‘em, and I never mind not having to cook dinner, but there is just something so decadent about rolling out of bed and having someone else take care of your first meal of the day while you lounge sleepily over coffee.  So that being said, you would think I would be excited about this super fun breakfast outing — and I mean I am, don’t get me wrong — but each time I go out for breakfast I get hand-wringing anxiety over one major conundrum:  Do I order Savory or Sweet? 

I know.  I’m lame.  

You see, I really do not have a sweet tooth.  Of course I have my favorite sweet things, I’m not saying I never indulge, but 9 times out of 10 if you offered me a bag of potato chips or the World’s Most Beautifully Hand Crafted Dessert, I’d shamelessly snatch that bag right out of your hands and go running, leaving the sweet stuff behind in the dust.  Call it a salt tooth, call it a character flaw, call it whatever you want, but when I have a craving it is fiercely for salty carbo-liciousness and the dessert decadence can more or less take a hike.  Reason # 917 why the South Beach Diet?  Is not even a feasible reality in my world (See also:  #918:  Laziness and #919:  Rage Towards Anyone Telling Me What To Eat).  The problem is, for some unknown reason every time I open a breakfast menu and see French Toast!  Strawberry pancakes!  Berries and Cream!  and immediately turn into a kid in a candy store:

MUST. HAVE. SUGAR. 

But I am never satisfied with a sweet breakfast.  Ever.  The only small exception to that rule is when Garrett and I go to Tower Cafe – and then we must split an order of their French Toast because it is a thing of wonder, people.  But even then, I still have to order my own breakfast and in lieu of toast split the order of one slice of the French Toast because seriously, there is no more awful feeling than ordering some variation on nutella stuffed french toast or pancakes dripping in some fruit compote concoction and having it arrive delicately on the plate right next to Garrett’s plate of eggs, bacon, hashbrowns, sourdough toast with just a hint of salted butter, and SOMEONE BRING ME A SALT LICK BECAUSE THIS SWEET ASS SHIT JUST AIN’T GONNA CUT IT.  HULK IS HANGRY!

Who ordered this sweet breakfast?This is bullshit.

It just kind of ruins the relaxing vibe of lounging over coffee, ya know? 

(You think I’m kidding, but ask Garrett, he has been there.  And although he lived to tell about it, it was only barely.)

So one would think, Holly, you know yourself.  You are never happy with sweet breakfasts, so the simple answer is just don’t order them.  But people, the siren song of sugary breakfast in the morning is a hard one to resist.  I don’t know why, probably because I don’t ever have nutella, or boysenberry syrup, or ollaliberry bread pudding with cinnamon cream sauce on top at home EVER, so part of me feels like this may be my only chance!  It could also be the years of torture I endured as a child (ha!) when my parents made me eat Grape Nuts and (if I was lucky) Kix when all I really wanted was Count Chocula and Trix and all the other normal cereals my friends’ parents let them eat. 

But all that is neither here nor there, because I think I may have found the solution:  The Monte Cristo Sandwich.  In short, it is a melty ham, turkey, and cheese sandwich served between two pieces of french toast style bread.  Sweet and Savory.  I told this to Garrett and he kind of crinkled his nose, and I agree, it sounds a bit untraditional — but hell, the sandwich has been around for ages and lots of people love it so it can’t be awful, can it??  I am crossing my fingers that this will solve my problem and I will never have to hand-wring again, but just in case I made sure to pack an outfit that will look cute on the off chance I start to turn green.         

Retail Resolutions

So along with some of the goals I have set out to accomplish this year, I also made a list of some more fun things such as — Big Ticket Items I Want To Buy This Year (which to me constitutes things that are over $200 dollars).  This list was very fun to make and pretty much flowed right onto the paper as soon as I picked up the pen.  Shocker, I know.  But I tried to be reasonable and make a list that makes sense but I also threw in a nice-to-have or two.  So I thought I’d share, since this is much more exciting than some of my other 2010 resolutions.

Big Ticket Items I Want To Buy

  • A Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer – I shouldn’t have to convince you why I want this, but what has been holding me back is in what color?  It’s a pricey purchase, and one I anticipate having for a long time so I want to make sure I get just the right one.  Frankly, I want this one but it is only sold at Macys and it doesn’t really go with our kitchen at the moment — but seriously, nothing goes with our kitchen — it needs updating and come on we have a Harvest Gold Appliances people, nothing is going to really “go”.  But someday we will update our kitchen, and that mixer will go beautifully in my dream kitchen, I’m sure of it.  Right now, at least.  But what if I change my mind?  The practical part of my brain tells me to go with the Silver one from Costco.  It’s cheaper, and possibly less “bold” down the road.  Also I have gift cards for Costco so there’s that.  But Robin’s Egg Blue???  Want. Want. Want.  And besides if I listened to my rational brain more often, I never would have spent $400 on a pair of hot pink sunglasses 5 years ago.  People thought I was nuts but to this day those are still one of my favorite purchases, so there is something to be said for a little whimsy every once in a while.  Anyway this year, I will decide if it kills me because I need that mixer in my kitchen.

  • A Digital SLR — This is another one of those “It’s about time” purchases.  It’s time I graduate from my playskool camera, you know?  I know it’s the cliche item to purchase when you have kids, but I’m getting to the point where, even though I don’t have rugrats, my point and shoot is frustrating me with its limitations.  I’m a control freak, and it should come as no surprise that I want to plop down $600 (plus new lenses!) to have more control over my pictures.  But ohmygod, even though I have been doing entry level research for about a year so and don’t feel quite so overwhelmed anymore, because it’s such a crazy purchase I want to get the exact right one, you know? Mike,  you know I’m going to come barking up your tree when I get this all figured out, right?

  • A Vitamix – DUUUUUDE —  it blends, it makes juice, it makes soup (that is actually hot!), it makes ice cream — it’s like a frumdrillion appliances in one.  And I want it.  And I’ve wanted it for a while, but this purchase is the definition of nice-to-have and not need-to-have.   Plus it’s huge and our kitchen storage is limited, but I think I’m going to make it happen this year anyway because I’m stubborn like that, and having kale in my smoothies excites me, okay?   

  • A Car — Ha!  That sounds so simple doesn’t it?  Just go out and buy a car.  BAHAHAHAHAHA.  I’ve been car shopping for two and half years, if you can believe that, and still, no new car.  Why is that, you ask?  Well it’s a fun little story.  A giant, irresponsible ass-clown hit my very cute and very-almost-paid-for Honda Civic almost three years ago and obviously I was (and still am a bit) pissed.  Note to self:  Let it go.  But seriously, A paid for car!  Oh, the excitement!  And I loved that car, it had low mileage, and it got me everywhere I wanted to go.  Luckily (and this is some crazy fate, people) the month before my car was totaled, Garrett’s grandma had given him her 1991 Toyota Cressida…with 50,000 miles on it.  I want you to wrap your brain around an almost 20 year old car with 50,000 miles on it.  Grandmas, man.  Gotta love it!  So I started driving that car since Garrett already had a car he LOOOOOVED (which ohmyheck is a story for another day – men and their cars — even when they are 10 years old! Sheesh!) so it all worked out just fine.  And I’m still driving it to this day, and honestly, I kind of love it.  I mean it has features that my old civic didn’t have (leather seats, sunroof,  my iPod plugs in just fine) but it is also a little bit of a labor of love.  Funny things happen to old cars that end up being millions of dollars at a moments notice, right?  And although I would like to be driving something a little more glamorous, the fact that it is free sort of makes up for all of that but the bigger issue is the convenience factor of having a car that has problems.  And that is something Garrett and I are ready NOT to have anymore (in at least one car)  So I need to get something.  But what?  I want something with good gas mileage, that is eco-friendly, and has lots of cargo room — but I’m not dying for an SUV.  I love a small car.  I was leaning towards the Honda Fit for a while, but they are pricey for what you get, and I could get something used that is a lot bigger for the same amount of money.  Oh, the decisions (and the money, OMG!)  So this is another purchase I’m going to tackle this year.  Cross your fingers for me.  

So, tell me, what’s on your wishlist?   

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