I really don't need to follow another blog, yet I always seem to be finding new ones that I get hooked on. Yet, if you ask yourself- what do we really need? You'll find that there's not really much that we need. We live in a culture of want. Our wants feel like our needs. Like, I need a trim. But, do I really need a trim?? Exactly. This topic is for another time and another post, but speaking of things that I don't need, but was so excited to come across today is a Top 10 Lists for blogs. Heaven knows the last think I need in my life is more blogs. Do I want to read more blogs? Yes! I feel I almost need to! Oh the vicious cycle!
How convenient that someone has more time to waste online than me and has compiled Top Ten Blog Lists for me to look at. Check it out here.
They list: Top Ten Blogs to Learn Something New (i need to learn, right?!), Top Ten Blogs for Foodies (i need to eat? oh that really is a need!! boom!!), Top Ten Blogs for Pop Culture (i need to know how many carats Kim Kardashian's engagement right is! oh wait, no i don't, but yet i do? there might be a tough argument to need pop culture at any level. unless guilty pleasure is a need?? ppffffttttt)
All I really know is the top ten reasons that my afternoon has the possibility of flying by could very well have to do with these Top Ten Lists. We will see if they deliver. Happy reading if you choose to join me on this slippery slope of obsessive blog reading :)
So, I don't know if you were around, but Robert and I tag-teamed blogging about the last season of the Bachelorette - Ali's season. Robert's posts were sort of legendary, intelligent and hilarious. Tragically, he made me delete them when I told my mom about my blog because they contained the "F" word? (Franni wouldn't have cared, but Robert has a rep to protect with his in-laws, so I reluctantly took down the priceless material. It still exists in my email archives...don't worry.) I wish he would come back and blog with me on this season because his posts and perspective really struck a chord and tickled the funny bones of some wives that have husbands that watch The Bachelor/Bachelorette with them. Alas, for now, you'll just have me. Maybe, I can have him hop on board for a guest post down the road?? I'll need your help on this so please comment if you want Robert to come back ;). It takes a village, people.
Alright, let's get down to business - Ashley H. is the chosen Bachelorette!! We know her from the last season of The Bachelor with Brad Womack (BW) - I'll drop the H just call her Ashley from now on.....Soooooooo, Ashely...here we goooooooo!
In BW's season, she looked like this:
After she found out she was going to become the next Bachelorette, ABC gave her a makeover and now she looks like this:
Extensions, change of color...it looks good. It scared me a little on "The Women Tell All" at the end of BW's season...
whoa there, not prepared for new Ashley....
But, now, I realize that her original look of the blond highlights and layers are very Friends circa1998, so I'm glad we've moved forward. Out with the old, onto finding love on reality TV!!!
What we know about Ashley from last season are mostly good things peppered with some red flags.
-comfortable posing with shells on her boobs for Sports Illustrated
-felt apprehensive about her feelings for BW
-claims she felt insecure (how could you NOT be..the guy you're trying to have feelings for is having romantic wine dates with Emily. duh.)
-claimed her first date with BW was the best first date ever
-said she ultimately feel in love with BW after she went home
How, I repeat, HOW does anyone fall in love with BW...I mean, he's nice enough, but my gosh, the man is a simpleton. I don't think he said a sentence when more than 3 words the whole season. A couple times, I wished that I could knock on his head like a door and say...."hello, is anyone in there??" Anway, going into Ashley's season, I have respect for Ashley, but this pesky "falling for BW" factor has me worried. Does she really have any standards whatsoever?
As the episode begins, we see Ashley going about her life in Philadelphia. She goes back to dental school, we see her running. I think every single Bachelor and Bachelorette is a runner. I can't remember ONE that hasn't had the running scene. Then, I start having Tenley flashbacks!! OMG - who knew that Ashley was a DANCER??!!! Get it GURL!
Then we get serious and she rolls her suitcase into her bachelorette pad in L.A., she's wearing a midriff top. Ash, you're out of the dance studio now, time to put on a whole shirt!! She walks outside...voice over on how she is sure she is ready to find love this time. andddd SCENE
And here come the boyyyyzzzzz
Here we have Ames, but I'd like to nickname him "Painful". Painful has 2 degrees from Columbia and another from Harvard. Okay, yeah, he's smart. And yeah, I'd love to have more education under my belt. And yeah, I'd tell everyone if I had a Masters from UT Dallas, let alone a doctorate from Harvard, but let's be real here, Ames. No one wants to hear it. Save that for your Wedding Announcement in the Times. And I don't care how smart he is, he was wearing ill fitting pants and his blazer seemed a little off too?? The gay guy that helped you at Bergdorf's lead you astray my man. Still, Ashley, looks past this and boom, Painful Ames goes on to see another episode....He gave her a ticket to ballet...ppppfftttt. We get it Ames, your cultured and intellectual.
Next up, we've got Anthony from New Jersey aka token Italian guy. He's a fourth generation butcher. He seems like a pretty genuine guy. Robert and I kept calling him Silvio Jr. Any Sopranos fans out there??
Maybe Anthony would have got a rose if he wasn't giving Ashley the creepy sex eyes all night. Please, Anthony, please be more of a cliche Italian guy.
When I was in high school, I went to France with the French Club, four of my best friends were on the trip too. When were were at the Eiffel Tower we started talking to a group of Italian guys. One particular took a liking to my friend, Annie. He said, and I quote, "Your eyes....they are like two stars sparkling in the sky." Later, we all got a lecture from Mrs. LeClaire, the French teacher on the trip, about how Italian guys are "different" and have "expectations" from American women and that we needed to be careful who we talked to.
These Eiffel Tower memories were surfacing when I saw the way Anthony was eyeing Ashely. I know that the "Your eyes...." line was about to come tumbling out of his mouth at any moment. He didn't get a rose and as he was leaving he confessed that he had been single for 7 years. Frowny face. Can some nice Italian girl from Jersey go take Anthony out on a date??
Here we have Ben C. Ben C. is romantic. Ben C. speaks French. Ben C. has declared that he is passionate. Robert said that he wishes he would have proclaimed to me that he is passionate when we meant at Ghostland. Ben C. gets a rose.
And onto Ben F. Ben F. is a winemaker. This series loveeeeesssss them some winemakers. (i.e. Andrew Firestore and Jesse from Jillian's season and The Bachelor Pad) Ben F. brought her some wine for his introduction. Smooth. Women love wine. Women love men who bring them wine. Ben F. gets a rose.
Here we have Bentley. Oh Bentley, Bentley, Bentley. How can he really be so horrid already? Did ABC hire him? I mean when they are showing previews he is stating that he doesn't care about Ashely, but he'd feel differently if it was Emily. No YOU DIIIN'T say that!!! Bentley's not even entertaining, he's just gross. Plus, he has a daughter named Cozy. Did he think he was getting a cat or hiring a stripper when his ex-wife was giving birth? The name Cozy is not okay, unless it's a family name of someone VERY beloved. He's already pulling out the "I'm a dad. My daughter is everything to me." card. PPPFFFFTTTT. I don't believe you, Bentley. Ashely has already heard that you aren't here for the right reasons. Whatever. He gets a rose, got to keep him around to keep the drama, baby!
Here's Blake. I remember nothing about Blake except he's a dentist too. A dentist ending up with a dentist....you know we all like that. He gets a rose.
Next up, Chris D. Sports Marketing Coordinator from Illinois. Yeah, couldn't tell you one thing that happened with him last night, but the kid gets a rose (I think?). REAL memorable guy, obvi. ha. Sorry, Chris D.
Chris M. here. Okay, Chris M. is from Canada. I have really high expectations of guys on this show from Canada. My favorite contestant of all time (Robert's too), Craig M. is from Canada. And the most d-baggiest guy, Justin "Rated R" is from Canada. All I got from Chris M. last night is a THICK Canadian accent. Was he doing that on purpose? I mean, my boss is from Canada. I know Canadians and this guy took the Canadian accent to a place that I've never heard. I think he gets a rose too...hope to hear more out of him soon.
Meet Constantine. Yep, that's one you don't here every day. He's Greek - shocker! He's the one that tied the pink floss around her finger. Oh brother. He gets a rose. I remember her saying, "Constantine" and I was like, "There's a Constantine on this show?!"
This is Frank. My mind draws a complete blank, except that he did say something dumb and Robert and I judged him. I think he got a rose.
This is Jeff. And this is when shit starts to get weird. Jeff wore a mask all night. Claiming that our society merely focuses on the outside of a person and it's what is on the inside that counts. "Umm, excuse me Jeff, you're on The Bachelorette, Season 7. Maybe you should have chosen a different forum to share your dissertation on the problems of society." The masked man, Jeff, gets a rose. All the other guys are totally creeped out.
Omg, this is Jon. The E-Commerce Executive. I asked Robert what that meant and he said he probably has a website. I have a website! (You're reading it) So, my new job title is E-Commerce Executive :). Back to Jon, Jon did NOT get a rose. I thought he had a killer tie and shirt on, but it was not enough to woo Ashley. Jon had a massive breakdown when he was cut. Tears involved. Poor, poor Jon. Apparently he and his family watched Ashley on BW's season and were already quite attached. Never mind the whole "never spending any real time with her" thing. Jon was heartbroken. Stay strong brother, you are only 26.
J.P. from New York! J.P. claimed that the New York dating scene was growing monotonous. What does that mean? You've slept with everyone there? J.P. seems charming and natural. He tells Ashley that his nickname at work is Cupcake, she admits to him that she wants her future husband to call her Cupcake. Does this mean they are destined? I like to eat cupcakes, do you think that I AM Ashley's soul mate?? J.P. gets a rose.
This is Lucas. Lucas spoke twice and both times he said the word Texas. We get it, man! You are from Texas! Lucas gets a rose.
Here we have Matt. I was about to type that I remember absolutely nothing about you, but then it came to me.........you're the one that called your Mom with Ashley. Ballsy! Matt gets a rose.
Michael from Rhode Island. He threw the guitar in the pool, I think??? I think he got a rose? Sorry for the doubts of accuracy. You're not reading the Wall Street Journal, bear with me.
This is Mickey. He's a chef. He must be reallllll confident because upon arrival he went right in for a french kiss. He got denied there, but he gets a rose.
Nick the personal trainer. Do you think he'll end up training all the guys in the house?? "5 more reps!! You can do it!! Push yourself!!!" Nick gets a rose, but won't last too long, I feel like he's 19?? He's really 26. Same thing. Okay, not really, but you get it.....
Here's Roobbbbbbbbb!!! Take a good look, because Rob doesn't get a rose. See ya, Rob.
Here we have Ryan. I don't remember Ryan at all. I think he got a rose??? I'M LYING!! Wait, Ryan is the guy that made her take pictures with him??? Then asks her if she'll take a picture of him with Chris Harrison inside. Clearly, 100% in this for love, not to meet Chris Harrison.
Drumroll!!! Here's Ryan P. - FIRST IMPRESSION ROSE WINNER!!! He seems like the world's nicest guy. He runs a solar energy company. He's just looking for the right girl to bring some "sunshine" to his life. I kill myself!
Here's Stephen. I don't know if you can kind of tell, but he's a hairstylist. He commented on Ashley's new hair color when he met her. That really gets a girl in the mood for romance....let's talk hair color!!! Stephen gets a rose.
This would be Tim. I have two word for Tim - Alcoholics Anonymous. I'm hoping that he is a member now after watching himself last night. Tim, by trade is a liquor distributor and he likes to distribute liquor to himself in large quantities. When he met Ashley, I thought he had a speech impediment. I saw the King's Speech. and I thought "I know what's going on here, Tim has a stutter!" Looking back, I just think Tim was already drunk. He's too drunk to even speak to Ashley and eventually falls asleep at the party. Timmy, come on now! How much did you have?? Since Ashely didn't want to start out a relationship checking Tim into the Betty Ford, she passed on giving him a rose. It's a tough lesson. We've all drank too much and been there. Of course, most of us aren't 35. Step 1: Admitting you have a problem.....
Here, we've got West. No, I didn't misspell that like I normally do. It's West as in opposite of East. He gave Ashely a compass that was stuck on West. Well, wasn't that clever! West is the Emily Maynard of the season, meaning he has the past that makes you want to curl up in a ball and cry for hours. West lost his wife of 7 years because she had a seizure in the bath. Bless his heart. West gets a rose.
Shoot! I almost forgot William. William the cell phone salesman! I wonder if he works for Sprint, AT&T or Verizon??? I wonder if he'll upgrade Ashely's long distance plan to get ahead of the game?? William gets a rose. Those cell phone salesmen know how to close a deal.
That's all for now folks....I know this is shaping up to be "the most dramatic season ever"!!!!
I am not on vacation, nor am I in Miami. I'd actually love to be in Miami because I have dear friends that live there. Does Suri have dear friends that live there? It's doubtful. Still, she'll have fun. I'll be here at work, earning a pay check. Two concepts that I'm guessing will never have to be part of Suri's life.
Just thought I'd pop by and say hey! All is ho hum and normal on the home front of casa de Scarff this week.
I wanted to update you guys that Bob's blue had is MUCH better. Phew.
Here's how it looked at it's worst....
But, like I said, it's much better. I think the doctors will be able to avoid amputating.
I've been having some fun on the internet this week....I'd thought I'd share why...
First up, One Kings Lane. It's like a Gilt or Rue La La for bedding, art, furniture, bath linens, lighting, decor etc. I'm not in the market to look for much, but I still have fun looking every day when they send me the email.
Also, are you guys members of Goodreads? I just got Robert to join. It's so fun. You can list and review the books you've read, post the books you're currently reading and list the books you want to read. So basically just like an online list. What's fun is that you can see what your friends are reading and want to read too. Can you tell that I wanted to be librarian when I was little? I just typed the words "It's so fun" about Goodreads? Help.
My final internet joy this week is from Pinterest. You can look at mine here. It's basically just a way to track stuff you find on blogs and websites that you like. It's fun and totally addicting. Join and let's follow each other.
There's other stuff on my mind...but that will have to wait until another time! So glad this week is winding on downnnnnn.....
I know that I'm having one of those weeks where my emotions are raw when I tear up several times while I'm watching my DVRed episodes of Glee. It's not okay that when Quinn and Rachel are singing the "Unpretty/I Feel Pretty" remix and I'm choking back crying. That's is the moment where you've got to take a step back and assess the situation.
i.e. ask yourself........"what is wrong with me??"
In my experience, raw emotions are generally a result of an unresolved issue brewing in your psyche or coming off something that was traumatic for you. Raw emotions are usually self inflicted and can be remedied by "talking it out".
Not this week. This week I refuse to put any of the blame of my raw emotions on myself. This week I'm blaming my raw emotions on Aron Ralston.
Oh are you not familiar with him? Please, please, let me brief you. He's the guy that the movie 127 Hours is based on. You know the one that was nominated for Best Picture this year? James Franco also got the nomination for Best Actor. It didn't win either of these categories, but after seeing the movie this week, I definitely see why it got the nod. The movie was hard for me to watch at times, but it was good.
If you're not familiar with the premise, I'll sum it up the best that I can. This guy, Aron, is rock climbing by himself. He falls and his arm gets stuck underneath a small boulder. He is stuck there for 127 hours. At the end of these 5 days, he breaks and cuts off his own arm to get free and survive.
Needless to say, the images of this movie have stuck with me with week. And when I stuck with me, I mean, haunted me.
During the time when Aron is stuck under the boulder, he has a video camera and he starts to do a video log how long he has been there, his thoughts, how he is trying to get out of there. He also starts to have flashbacks of his life. He thinks about his mom and dad. His friends. His ex-girlfriend. He regrets. He regrets not calling his mom back. He regrets not telling his family how much they meant to him. He regrets not telling anyone where he was going. He regrets thinking that he is invincible. He realizes he created this situation. That his whole life has been leading up to this. That this boulder has been waiting for him.
That's when I got scared. It sounds silly, but I thought to myself, what is the boulder that's waiting for me? What is the lesson that God is trying to tell me, but I keep refusing to see? Is he going to have to put a boulder on me before I realize that I'm not invincible?
These thoughts along with the whole deal of him cutting off his own arm is what has been haunting me.
I think I want to be haunted by these thoughts though (NOT the arm ones). I want to look at my life continuously, daily, hourly if I have to, just to figure out how God can have more of me and I what I'm trying to hold onto for dear life. Is God going to have to move a metaphorical boulder on me for me to let go? Maybe he is, regardless of my efforts. It's usually in pain that I realize my necessity and dependence on something so much bigger than myself. If that's what He has to use, then so be it. A small price to pay for a shift of perspective and a realization that it's not about me. I liked a lot about the movie, but I really liked that it made me get to this point in my thoughts.
I still wish I hadn't seen or rather didn't even KNOW that someone had to cut off their own arm. Hopefully these images will fade. Honestly, I looked away for most of that scene, but what I did see is still burned in the forefront of my brain.
Cheers to you though, Aron Ralston. You're going to have the best story at cocktail parties forever.
Speaking of arms/limbs/appendages. God is DEFINITELY telling to be thankful for simple things like that, that I easily take for granted.
Robert walked in the door last night with a jammed hand from a basketball game. Yes, this sounds like a mild thing. It is- in the grand scheme of things. Still, last night looking at his swollen palm and looking up what could be wrong on the internet, I began to slip into a slow spiral of freaking out.
At minimum my hope was that my uninsured husband would agree to get an x-ray to make sure that there isn't anything broken in there. When his fingers and his arms were tingling last night he was on board with this. But, he woke up this morning and he thinks it's getting better. It's turning blue. I still think he needs an x-ray. Yes, I realize that I'm not a doctor, it's just my humble opinion. True, it could be nothing more than a bruised hand, but one must take precautions, right? ppppppffffffftttttttt. What to do? I know it will be okay, still my emotions are RAW thanks to Aron Ralston, so I'm worried.
Prayers for wisdom on what to do with Robert's blue hand today are greatly appreciated.
Also, just looking at Robert's hand, I don't know how ol' Aron survived the whole boulder crushing the hand bit. Pretty sure I would have killed myself after feeling that pain....
So, you know when you're starving for lunch at like 10:00 a.m.? Sometimes, it happens to me if I skip breakfast, sometimes it happens to me when I've had a breakfast that includes all of the elements of the food pyramid. Today was one of those days. I had breakfast, not a full food pyramid of breakfast, but still, I had it.
"they" keep changing this thing, so we all stay really confused.
when "they" make eating healthy MORE of a challenge for me is when i resign to eating cookie dough for every meal.
Back to my starvation, everything was normal today except I was ready to eat my stapler 10:00. I knew I was going to need LUNCH. Notlunch, like the hummus, vegetables and apple I keep in the work fridge that I strive to eat at 2:00 so the afternoon goes by faster, but rather LUNCH. Like a full meal of food that I need to eat at noon sharp so that I don't go into a coma from low blood sugar.
One place calls my name on these days, it says, "Alexisssss, I will feed you."
The name of that place is Chipotle, you might be familiar with it. I usually get a salad there and all is right in the world. Today, I needed more than the salad, I needed the burrito bowl. AND chips and salsa. This is also one of those days where I needed Mary with me in the line at Chipotle to tell me how fat I am, so I stop ordering food. Alas, Mary wasn't there. Alas, I'm still eating chips y salsa.
Another perk of Chipotle today, besides the whole taking care of my starvation bit, was the friendly staff. I don't know if their regional corporate advisor was in town today or what, but whew, those employees were chipper! And whew, I liked it! People that do their jobs well is so refreshing. They gave me the mild AND the medium salsa, so I can be sure which one that I liked. Well, okay!
Maybe the reason I appreciate people who do their job WELL is because I'm not sure that I am one of those people. To do my job well consists of acting busy 80% of of the time. When you've accomplished that, you start to ask yourself why you're at this job in the first place. Then you start a blog and you get back on Facebook.....hmmm, anywayyyyyyy....
Since we are talking about food....I thought I'd share some Culinary Adventures with you.....
So far, Bob and Al have had a daring week with PESTO!! Al hearts pesto!
On Monday we had baked ravioli pasta dish with pesto and parmesan. Rich and cheesey and good! We got the recipe from a Real Simple Weeknight meals magazine/cookbook thing that Bob's mom gave us.
It was wait for it....wait for it.......REAL SIMPLE! (love all those Real Simple magazines btw...)
Here's the recipe:
1 package of frozen cheese ravioli
3 Tblspns. store bought or homemade pesto (actually it could have been more pesto? just cover the ravioli's in pesto)
Boil ravioli. Drain. Mix with pesto. Put into a baking dish. Cover with parm. Bake for 20-25 minutes on 375 degrees.
Bob and I gage things on if we would serve them to guests that we have over for dinner. Since we do that so much?? HA. But, we said we'd serve this at one of our hypothetical dinner parties. So I'd say that equals success. PLUS, like I said it was REAL freaking SIMPLE.
Since we had pesto left over, it only made since to have another pesto infused dish for Tuesday's dinner. I found this recipe from one of my new favorite bloggers that had a recipe exchange....
I took Roasted Veggie Pesto Pasta from this blog and it was pretty pretty good! A great way to get those veggies in. Also, check out the recipe exchange if you're needing some new/good recipe ideas. I'm always needing those....
My mom and I texting today. Her b-day is this Saturday.
Me: What are the BIRTHDAY GIRL'S plans this weekend??! :)
Me: I don't believe that!! ;)
Me: Well, nothing is my favorite thing to do! You've got to rest up for Beantown!
Mom: Is that what it is called??
If you haven't guessed it's my Mom's first trip there. :)
I googled it and found this out....
Why is Boston called Beantown? Back in colonial days, a favorite Boston food was beans baked in molasses for several hours. Back then, Boston was sort of awash in molasses - it was part of the "triangular trade" in which slaves in the Caribbean grew sugar cane to be shipped to Boston to be made into rum to be sent to West Africa to buy more slaves to send to the West Indies. Even after the end of this practice, Boston continued as big rum producing city - the Great Molasses Flood of 1919 (which killed 21), ocurred when a tank holding molasses for rum production exploded. Today, Boston baked beans are something of a rarity - there are no companies in the city making it and only a few restaurants serve it. If you want to try it yourself, here's a Boston baked beans recipe
What a brutal way to go...molasses explosion...geees.
I know Mom and sis are going to have GREAT trip (thanks to Ryan). They are going to learn and see so many cool things!!! I wish I was going!! Can't wait to hear stories of their Beantown adventures....
said in the Carrie Bradshaw tone, "hello lover." (sorry, Baby. Baby hates SATC.)
Anyway, when the page turns to May all my thoughts switch to summertime. Who is not ready for some summertime? Seersucker, ritas on a patio, the smell of sunscreen, sno cones, sunglasses, 'kinis, mojitos, white jeans, warm nights, grilling out, flip flops, trips to the lake, watermelon... Oh it sounds marvelous! I'm ready for the light, airy and bright colors to come out in everyone's wardrobe. No more fleeces, no more heavy cardigans. Finally, the transitional windy and rainy months of spring are winding down and the summer gear can officially come out. In high school, I discovered that I felt skinnier and I was tan in the summer. Therefore, I declared that summer was my favorite season and I swore I would get married in the summer. I was a reallll deep thinker in my teens. Tan+skinny=happy. HA. Oh, naive high school, Alexis, if things were only that simple....
There's me in the dead of winter. Brrrr, I'm cold! Isn't it funny how things turn out? My wedding was perfect, I wouldn't want it at any other time of year. I know you are surprised, naive high school, Alexis, but you'll eventually come to terms with it. ;)
sidenote: Now that I've seen Duchess Catherine's dress, I had to ask Robert if I was a tramp in my wedding dress because I didn't have sleeves. I don't think he even answered me. I was kidding, of course. I think?
Back to summertime thoughts - who doesn't love shorts in the summer? These are cute.
polka dots - from antrho/ black eyelets - from j.crew
This is summery....bright like sunshine!
i'm sorry, i don't remember what brand this is? it was on gilt? like it matters, who is going to spring for this yellow suitcase ;)
Onward - I love how summer recipes are so fruit and beverage centered!
Some that I must try when those temperatures get to hot to take....