Thursday, June 30, 2011

yep. not happening.

Sorry, friends that read the Bachelorette recap. I've been preoccupied with work and I'm only part way through recapping. Thankfully, I am at the one on one with Lucas, so Bentley is behind me. Anyway, the day is drawing to a close and my sense of humor about anything is completely null and void. If I continue the post, I'm afraid it will end up as post about how everything sucks and has no purpose and the Bachelorette proves that. (yeah, that's where I am today)  Let's hope I get in a better place tomorrow, for I am going home. Big weekend...10 year high school reunion, family, the whole 9. ppppfffffttttttt. It's always at the times I know I should be the most happy, that I can't be. Sorry for being such a downer, but that's all I've got.

BUT, on a generic and pretending to be okay note - everyone have a safe and happy 4th :)



Fighting today and over it.....

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

bach blogging in motion


I'm about half way done! It should be up by tomorrow around noonish PERIOD

No more DOT DOT DOT ;)

surely, this isn't my life...surely

I may or may not have mentioned this before, but often, I am sent to pick up lunch for my bosses. I've no problem with this. I'm not below going to get lunch. I'm glad to be the go-to girl when they need a Jersey Mike's menu. I'm glad! I'm happy happy about it!!!! (I'm bawling at my desk. jk.jk.)

Today, I let the newest guy in the office write out what he wanted. I usually take orders like a waitress, but I felt the new guy could handle it. (they don't teach the waitress bit in college. some might call me a fast learner.)

This was the result of New Guy's order:


Really????

a. Thanks for circling Cheetos. I might not have seen that.
b. Thank you for writing out the word "options" for a and b. I might not have understood where you were going with that. 

I like the New Guy. He's very nice and not cocky despite having gone to Princeton and having a large trust fund. He didn't mean to make me feel like the size of David the Gnome with his lunch order. I know that. He was just being clear. VERY clear. 

Geeeeeeeesssss. Circling Cheetos...I may never recover.......

Monday, June 27, 2011

sticking with me

Robert and I listened to a sermon yesterday. I might paraphrase a bit here, but something that has stuck with me wasn't the main point of the message, which was good too, but it was when the pastor said this....

"Happiness is a cheap substitute for JOY." 

He said that happiness isn't bad, of course. It's good! It can be a product of joy, but we can't just settle for happiness. We just want to be happy...is that ALL we want?? GOD WANTS FAR MORE FOR US. 

Seek the JOY that only God can bring. When we have JOY it doesn't matter what comes our way, we will still have that JOY. It's bigger than us, it's not about us. It's about Christ. It's not about our fleeting temporary happiness on this earth. 

I saw this today and after I did, I knew I had to share what was sticking with me.

Also, a verse that keeps popping up again and again in my life, that I must share (seriously, it's been in emails...on facebook...this verse is after me! ha)

Phillippians 4: 6-8
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, in prayer and petition and with thanksgiving, submit your requests to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. 

I've had friends going through hard things in these past couple months. Friends that I love, friends that shouldn't be experience anything but JOY. It's hard and it's hard not to question God's plan. But at the end of the day, I KNOW, that without praying, without knowing that God was with them and that HE is in control, there would have been little peace. 

How amazing is it that "the peace of God which transcends all understanding" can be with us when all we can do is be "anxious"??

Keep praying...keep believing.

tis true, my friends 

Bachelorette Party Aftermath

Two weekend ago, I was lucky enough to be part of a bachelorette weekend for a special gal. It included some of my favorite things...time with friends that live near and far...an excuse to eat and drink whatever I wanted to...and most importantly celebrating one of my best friends getting married!!

pool time 
there's the bride and yes, she is as pretty as she is wonderful 

In life, you must take time to celebrate the good stuff. And this is the good stuff. 

Somehow, and mind you I don't know how, but somehow, after the weekend was over. Robert and I's house was demolished. It looked liked 10 girls had stayed there, but it had just been me rushing in and out all weekend. Just some minor aftermath...small price to pay for a weekend 'o fun. 

Everything is all clean now except I had a bowl of home made teal icing leftover from the baking that I did for the bachelorette weekend. Why teal?? I was trying to make the icing look "not baby shower" icing. I don't know if I succeed in this. Nevertheless, I had this bowl of icing. Hmmm, what does one do with a bowl of icing!! 

Well, make a cake, course!! 

Incredibly inspired by this post on Friday, I wanted to do something that I had never done last weekend. Wondering if I should throw away that teal icing, I realized that I had never made a cake from scratch before. (Oh shoot, I did make a chocolate sheet type cake for Rhonda's birthday one year.) But never have I made a traditional layer cake like you see in the old movies. I have made cupcakes from scratch so that sort of counts, I've also made lots of stuff from the boxes. But never just a CAKE. I also wanted to make it for NO occasion. No event that I had to bring the cake to. I just wanted to make a cake. 

So....I did. Sunday afternoon, I measured and stirred and poured and it was a lot of fun. 


There is my No Reason Cake. My imperfect, no reason, teal cake. Birthed from the Bachelorette Party Aftermath. 

I used the Traditional Vanilla Cake recipe from the Magnolia cookbook. I think it turned out okay? I had a piece last night and one for breakfast this morning. Both times it succeeded in putting me into a sugar coma. It's soft which I like, so that was exciting! 

My biggest victory with the cake came this morning when Robert had the cake for breakfast. He texted me later that he loved it.  You must understand, Robert doesn't eat cake. Robert doesn't like cake. Robert didn't want a grooms cake at our wedding and if he HAD to have a grooms cake, he didn't want it to be University of Texas themed. 

our grooms cake. yeah....that didn't work out so well for him

Anyway, Robert's getting good at "comments to say to make your wife happy" or he truly liked my cake. 

Either way is okay, because I baked a cake and it was wonderful time. Doing something just because just might be my favorite reason to do something..... :)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Mystery Socks

The weirdest thing happened.....

So, last night, I was folding laundry. I fold these cool Nike dri-fit socks that I had never seen before and I said to Robert, "Oh, I like these socks. I haven't seen these before." Of course, I assumed they were his. Who else's would they be?? He looks at them and says, "Those are yours. They aren't mine."

I know my socks. Those are not my socks. They are not Robert's socks. Who's socks are they and why are they in our dryer??


like this but cut lower to the ankle. owner of these socks show yourself. 

Miss USA

Who caught the display of spectacular pageantry on Sunday???

Robert saw that it was on and recorded it for us. Yes, he recorded it. Why, might you ask? He recorded it because Miss USA really plays out like an extended version of an SNL skit. Anyone who sees it as otherwise needs to set up a meeting with me and explain this.

The best part is the beginning. You get to see every girl from all 50 states and on the side of the screen it tells how old they are, their hometown and lists their "passions".

Passions. OMG. Passions are the best part. Okay, okay...maybe second best. The best part is when the finalists have to answer the question that they pick from the fishbowl. It's so excruciating to watch, but you can't turn away. The usually don't even ANSWER the question, they just say some jumbled up words on the topic that scarcely compose a sentence. Though Miss California did get the point across that she believed in medical marijuana, but failed to answer the question of whether or not we should legalize it.....ppppppffffftttt.

Back to passions. Robert and I had to pause it because we were laughing so hard at their passions.

I kid you not  - one girl had: Donuts and Rollercoasters listed as her passion. Another girl: Manicures.

Really??? Are you passionate about manicures??? ARE YOU??

Didn't someone help them with these answers?? Did they not realize they would be displayed??

Robert and I also couldn't stop cracking up at the hosts. Andy Cohen was acting like Cheri O'Teri when she did the morning show skit "Morning Latte" on SNL and Giuliana Ranic clearly thought this was the dumbest event in history.



Whew!! It was pure comedy people!! Be sure to tune in next year!!

And Congrats to Miss California (who is actually a natural blonde from Jersey) who took home the crown!!!

she shared that is a history buff. for example, she watches Game of Thrones (which is a fantasy, but whatever)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Bachelorette Season Seven: It's the Eye of the Tiger, it's the Thrill of the Concussion!

This episode was kind of uneventful, but don't worry, I can get pretty wordy, so I'll somehow find a way to make a full recap out of it.

Welcome to the glorious city of Chiang Mai!! The boys pull up at some sort of palace to stay at! Fancy. That should make this experience a little bit better (oh wait, never mind, they are going to make them fight each other later).

Guess what time it is???!! One on one date time with Ben F., the wine maker!!!

Now, what is up with Ashley's 80s-esque business outfit? I mean, it's cute, but I felt like she was ready for a day of work at an advertising agency, not a day of strolling around the Thai market place?? (Which by the way is exactly like "real life".) Oh well, who cares about her pencil skirt and shell, if she's happy, I'm happy!! I haven't heard the name Bentley yet, so that's a plus!! I do keep hearing her talk about the getting a "fresh start" thing. How many fresh starts does one need??

the internet is a sick place. humiliated i found this photo. 

Let's get back to real life and Ben F., the elephant painter/winemaker. There was some chemistry last week, what is going to happen now?? They see street food! They paint umbrellas!! She tries on a robe!! A day of tourism at it's best. Ben F. says he has the best job in the world. Good call, entice her with the life on the vineyard!!

business casual in Thailand

Before I knew it they were sitting in front of some sacred temple thing where they are not allowed to kiss. What would happen if they did kiss?? Would they have been caned?? That would have been a buzzkill. I'm guessing it was more of a superstitious thing. Ashley pretended that there was sexual tension between her and Ben F. She claimed that she "really wanted to kiss him!!" Was it that OR was she just trying to squint her eyes and imagine Bentley?? I don't know...I don't know...

Thankfully, it's time for the a dinner date in the middle of lots of candles!! There IS kissing allowed there!! Ashley does the thing where she pretends that she set the whole dinner up. When Ben F. walks in and is like, "Wow...this is great.", she's like, "I know, isn't it awesome." Like she worked all day on it. ppppfffffttttt.

Ashley wants to pick grapes on Ben F.'s vineyard. They have migrant workers for that. I don't think that requires dental school either, but hey, whatever you want to do!! I went to college and I really want to be yoga instructor, so I feel you sister!! Pick those grapes!!

Ben F. confesses out of nowhere that he was emotionally closed off about a year ago, but now he's not.

Okay??? Maybe he should have kept that inside?? But he didn't. So honest of him. So deep. Ashley digs it. They kissssssss.

the tension is broken

Now, it's time for the group date!! 

I'd never heard of this famous sport called Muay Thai boxing. And I'm still confused how it's different from normal boxing, but I'm a girl soooo, yeah. 

Anyway, that's what they are doing for the day...Muay Thai boxing. Did anyone catch that they were training for THREE hours. Bless their hearts. It looked more intense than Cross Fit. So, Cross Fit for 3 hours, all while trying to be macho in front of Ashley in spandex. 

Was it Lucas or Ryan P. that "spandex was made for people like Ashley". Was that a compliment?? I don't know, but it made me feel weird. 

So, they had to do this three hour training deal with these intense Thai trainers yelling at them and THEN...surprise!!! They had to fight each other!! They unveil this like the guys are supposed to be excited?? Who wants to be hit in the face? Who wants to look like a little girl if they lose? It's all stressing me out. They rush to get the boxing outfits. Ames is so nice that he lets the other guys grab all the colors of boxing outfits before himself. He is left with the pink one. I personally heart guys in pink. I also heart Ames. Ames has made it clear that he is not a fighter. That would be because he is SMART. But, he's going to give it all he has anyway. I mean, what else is he going to do?

eeehhhhhhhh

The fights start up. J.P. beats Mickey. I don't remember who else beats who. Ryan P. and Ames fight. Ryan P. clocks Ames in the head a couple times. Ryan P. wins. Ames steps out of the ring looking dazed. He probably had a small seizure that was edited out. Finally Ashley goes and gets the staff and in a scene was wasn't that dramatic, but was trying desperately to be, they haul Ames off in an ambulance mini van thing. 

Well, this is going all wrong!! Shoot!! When things go wrong it always makes me miss Bentley...anyone else??

Cocktail party time. Ames is missing. He's still not back?? My gosh, what is wrong with him?? Where is he?? Did they have to preform open heart surgery?? Ashley is trying to talk to the others, but she can't really focus. Finally, Ames comes back looking all spiffy!!! He's okay. Phew. He did say that he was having trouble talking around Ashley more than usual?? How much brain trauma did he suffer??

i hope he remembers all that stuff he learned at Harvard

Lucas teaches Ashley how to swing a golf club. I think Ashley is digging Lucas...Lucas is in this to win this!! Oh, I'm praying for a hometown visit to Lucas's city of Odessa!!! Do you think Ashley has seen Varsity Blues?? She better get to KNOW Permian Basin if she wants to hang with Lucas. Lucas says she thinks her type is Bentley. Salt in the wound Lucas, let's not bring up Bentley. 

Blake and Ashley have a convo about "where they are going". Ashley is happy with "where they are". Where are they?? They are both dentists!! Blake needs reassurance. Blake gets the rose. The others want it!! This is getting serious...real feelings are happening!!  

It's time for the two on one date with William and Ben C. William is the cell phone salesman, Ben C. is the passionate lawyer. Obvi, she likes neither of these guys. She tells them at the beginning of the date..."let's just see how this goes..." READ ---- "I'm thinking about Bentley and I don't really care about this date."

William takes it upon himself to be a big fat tattletale and tell Ashley that Ben C. said something about online dating when he got back home. William declares not all of the guys are completely in this. William, YOU IDIOT. Ashley's insecurities flare up like a mating iguana and in 4.5 seconds she is confronting Ben C. about his alleged "online dating remarks". Ben C. is totally caught off guard. He is here for the right reasons, damn it!!! See ya at The Men Tell All, Ben C., I'm sure you are going to want to Muay Thai Box William's face off. 

William thinks he is in the clear. He is feeling comfortable and good!!!

This brings to a parable about over confidence. I wish William would have known this parable. I've shared it with you before and I'll share it again....

One day, Mary and I were picking up lunch for the office at State and Allen. We saw a guy about our age in scrubs and Mary said, “he’s kind of cute.” Well, I thought I would take this opportunity to introduce myself to him and tell him to email Mary and hand him Mary’s business card. He did email Mary. This was fine, a good move I thought. He then called her that night and asked her to do something. A little zealous, but okay. She couldn’t do anything at that particular time. He then proceeded to keep emailing and sent her a picture. And that was the fall of Sam Eaton. Too much, man, just too much. Rule one if you want to get in the door with Mary: Be cool. Sam couldn’t be cool. He couldn’t hold it in….wayyyy too over confident. I blame myself really, we probably inflated his ego approaching him the way we did. I saw Sam about a year later at State and Allen again sporting the scrubs. Weird. Anyway, lesson learned, over confidence and being wayyy too comfortable at the beginning is frankly a turn off. 

Willam totally over confident and wayyyyyy too comfortable after Ben C. left and what happened. That fool was sent HOME!! Ashley was looking for the spark that was on the first date, but she couldn't find it (because she was thinking about Bentley mostly). William is sad. He calls himself a jackass. 

It's okay, Will, we all have to learn the hard way. I bet you're going to sell so many iPhone 4gs when you get home. 

The rose ceremony is here. Finally. I can't handle another second of this episode. And where's Bentley, I thought Bentley was holed up in some hotel room?? What is going on?? Satan...where art thou???

She talks to the guys, but is clearly not into it. Ryan P. and her have their normal ditty. Constantine isn't sure he's ready to propose. (Thank you for being normal.) She and J.P. talk about real life. 

It's time to talk to her life coach Chris Harrison. She's teary eyed, we know where this is headed....to Bentely and the DOT DOT DOT. Chris Harrison has got to be wondering how Ashley made it this far in life. Ashley doesn't feel honest, she has got to have closure so she can really give these guys a chance. I don't think she wants closure. I think she wants Bentley to come back and propose. She is seriously delusional, but that's okay. I issues too, so I'm not judging. Harrison says he'll make the Bentley connection happen. She's relieved. 

(Here's my question...couldn't have they just gotten that d-bag on the phone?? Why fly him all the way to Hong Kong??)

Anywayyyy....long story SHORT, she sends home the personal trainer. Good bye Nick!! He wasn't ready to go. Frowny face :(. I wouldn't want to leave the never ending frat party either, Nick.

How about the scenes for next week???? The boys are NOT happy about the surprise Bentley pop-in!!! Why are they even there if she's having secret rendezvous with Bentley??? Yeah, I'd be p.o.ed too. Do you think someone will leave??? This is going to be the most dramatic episode yet. I'll be there. 

Thursday, June 16, 2011

check it out

You know when you get to know someone and you realize that just knowing them will help you be a better person? Like better in all sorts of ways....smarter, funnier, more stylish, more in the know....

I feel that way about my friend, Daley. I've been lucky to get to know Daley through the Bible study that I was welcomed into several years ago. She always comes to Bible study looking perfect. She does not own an ugly outfit. I'm always marveled at how cute and put together she is. I usually straggle to Bible study in years old work out clothes or hideous work outfits that I'm embarrassed to own. The girls at Bible study probably find me to be a bit of a hobo, but it's okay. They are still nice to me :).

The other thing about Daley is that she's hilarious. She has a great sense of humor and has the best stories. You will never not be entertained around Daley. She's also crazy generous. Need to borrow dress? Daley will offer before you even ask. Need a contact because you are looking for a job in a new field? Daley will hook. you. up.

Also, spiritually, it has been inspiring to me how she wants to know and understand God on all levels....intellectually, emotionally. She is honest with her life and she continuously keeps pursuing God. It reminds me to do the same thing. See!! There she goes making me a better person!! ha.

AND what's even more impressive is that she's so humble, which is amazing because she is so talented.

When her sister got married, she drew a little map for her wedding. It showed where all the events were for the wedding weekend. It was really cute and people loved them. They began hiring her to draw them maps for their wedding weekends. So began, her little company, Merry Maps. Which has now done maps for weddings all over the world! So cool. She can do maps for anything too. Maps to a lake house, a ranch, a cabin....etc. She's been featured on lots of blogs and written about in publications. Sooo, she's pretty much famous now :).

She has recently re-branded Merry Maps to be called Daley Ann and will now provide a variety of services.



Check out her website here.

Love her party calligraphy.


 Check out her site!!! It's darling, you'll fall in love with Daley Ann :)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Bachelorette Season Seven: It's Raining Men in Thailand!!!

I love when they start the traveling portion of this show. Even though I'm clearly loosing brain cells listening to Ashley about her "woman's intuition" about Bentley, at least I can walk away from this episode knowing I got to see how cool Thailand is.

For Ashley, this week is all about new beginnings. She can't lie, she is still thinking about Bentley, but she is at a better place now. She's moving on. She has great men here that she needs to focus on. Excellent idea, but poorly executed. Maybe if she stopped talking about Bentley that would help. I heard the name Bentley so many times last night...he might as well have been in freaking Phuket with the other 12 men. 

Ashley picks Constantine to go on a one-on-one with to kick of Thailand. He's the Greek guy that put floss around her finger on the first episode. I keep getting him mixed up with the winemaker, Ben F. They have that longish hair thing going. Anyway, here comes Constantine.


ben f. to the left c-tine to the right

Unfortunately, they get rained out of their plans for the day. They can't go on the boat and frolic about on the ocean. Ashley is going with the flow, but inside she is really bummed they can't go on the boat. Boo-effing-hoo. Seriously, you are in Thailand for FREE, just enjoy it. She and Constantine go walk around the shops arms wrapped around each other. Constantine isn't trying too hard and seems to be genuine. I like him okay, but I don't see a spark there. The conversation is very blah. So blah, in fact, that again she is thinking about, the ghost of Christmas past, BENTLEY.

Did anyone think it felt weird when they stopped the old Thai man and asked him the secret to long love was?? I thought they were going to ask him advice for something to do, somewhere to eat, directions?? No, they wanted relationship advice. This guy isn't Dr. Phil. Why are they talking to him about relationships? Granted I did like his answers about forgiveness and not winning. Ashley is ALL about the "not winning" answer. I think she's taking it the wrong way. I don't think he was competing for his wife on reality television for roses. I think he meant that in a completely different manner, but oh well, literally whatever takes Ashley's mind away from Bentley for 2 seconds is FINE with me.

most exciting part of their date. running in the rain. 

The day of excitement ends with a dinner in a cabana by the ocean. Sigh. It really was quite scenic. I looked at Robert and said, "I want to go on a date there with you!!" (Thank you producers of ABC on putting tremendous expectations on our husbands about "romantic dates".) Poor Robert agreed that it would be fun to do that on a date. Robert is holding on to a very slim thread of sanity while watching this season of The Bachelorette, but he's powering through it. Back to C-tine and Ashley. They discuss how fun the day was and that they really got to "talk". Ashley says she felt comfortable with him and that he really helped her feel better. (READ: My heart is still breaking from Bentley dumping me, but I'm trying). Constantine gets the rose. 

And now onto the group date....

go team!!

I think it is beyond cool that they helped paint the orphanage. I actually teared up a little. I know. 

The thing that was killing me was how the guys kept on complimenting Ashley on how great it was that SHE planned this project. ppppppfffffffffttttt. Boys, boys, boys. They could be unaware that each season there is some cause that ABC finds for The Bachelor or Bachelorette and his or her contestants to help with for an episode. Didn't Brad Womack and the gals do a public service announcement about donating blood or something?? My point being, though I'm sure Ashley is as philanthropic as the rest of us, the painting the orphanage thing was NOT her idea. Not that it really matters, it's a great thing to do regardless.

It became not so great when the guys were getting annoyed with Ryan P. for trying to lead everyone, oh and smiling too much. Lucas from Texas says, "we are all leaders here." I felt like I was watching an episode of the Real World and they are at their "job" and someone is being annoying. It's so hilarious when guys become catty and it's coming out. Ryan P. is annoying them! Who does this guy think he is? And all that smiling? Get him out of here!!

I've no doubt all of this would have been resolved if Bentley, the great communicator, would have been there. 

Ben F. paints a mural of an elephant on a wall and Ashley is digging it. A guy that makes wine and can paint a decent elephant.....this doesn't come around everyday!!! Jackpot!!! 

ABC brings out some bikes and some soccer goals and balls. In a very touching scene the kids come out and Ashley and the boys respond splendidly and fraternize with them. 

J.P. is changed forever. Touching, really, no sarcasm there. It was sweet. The Bachelorette - changing lives. (Lots of sarcasm there.)

Okay, it's cocktail PART-AY time!! Ben F. tells Ashley that he felt her "buzzing around him" throughout the day. Dude, she dug your elephant!! Ashley tells Ben F. that he really impressed her today. Ashley and Ben F. smooch. Connections are being made. Then she and J.P. have some alone time. According to Ashley, J.P. is the best kisser ever!!! My roomate in the dorms my freshmen year kissed this guy, Bordy, and told some people that he was a good kisser. It got back to Bordy and he got a big head about it and it was annoying. When this gets back to J.P., I hope he can stay grounded.

Ryan P. is continuing to smile and rub all the guys the wrong way. 

Throughout all of this....Ashley is still thinking about, Bentley with the heart of darkness. 

Ben F. gets the rose. And scene.....

Time for the one on one with Ames!!!!


canoeing 

Ashley knows Ames is smart, but not much else. Today, she's excited to get to know Ames (while fantasizing about what could have been with Bentley). Ames has already been to Thailand - mountain climbing and cooking school?? This guy is a renaissance man!! What else does he do?? They get to go on this awesome yacht type boat. Ashley tries to make a Titanic reference, but Ames either ignores it or was too busy reading Ulysses to see Titanic and has no idea what she's talking about. 

Then, they get to go canoeing around a beautiful island. Ames keeps comparing canoeing to being a relationships and love. "you never know what's going to happen, you just have to be brave and you could end up somewhere really beautiful." It's so painful, BUT, when Robert and I drove the road to Hana in Maui, I remember thinking, "this is just like marriage!! so many twists and turns and ups and downs!!" So, I'm guilty of this too - comparing excursion type activities to relationships.  

Ashley and Ames actually start talking and are having great conversation. I'm not kidding, it could be the best conversation that I've ever heard on this show. 

She's shocked that this guy can talk!! Whoa!! And he's funny!! A talking, smart, funny person on the Bachelorette??!!! This IS weird. 

Ashley and Ames talk about how much they have in common. They both have "nerd boards" in their house?? Ames says his are everywhere. I'm afraid Ames apartment might look like that scene in "A Beautiful Mind" with all those lists everywhere?? Maybe not....

She admits to the camera that she probably would have looked Ames over if Bentley was still here. pppffffftttt. She also talks about how she wants to raise her kids differently than how she was raised. "Umm, Ashley, your parents are probably watching this??"

I totally fell for Ames on this date. I want him for my best friend Sarah, not Ashley. But, Ames, is still on the Bachelorette train. Ashley likes all this "conversation" and Ames gets a rose. Cheers!!

Time for the rose ceremony!!

The middle school squabble comes to a head with Ryan P. Blake questions his sincerity. Ryan P. is not happy. WTF, guys?? I like smiling!!! Smiling is my favorite!!! Maybe the P stands for Pollyanna?? I don't know, but Ryan is freaking. He keeps his composure in front of Ashley, but this was not a fun night for him. 

Ashley and Lucas talk. Lucas is divorced?? Who else is divorced?? Geeezzzzzz, guys, stop being such statistics. 

Ashley talks to West about whether he is really ready to get married again. She's not sure she can fill those "big shoes". Anddddddd.....she doesn't even want to try because West is the ONLY guy that doesn't get a rose. Awkward. 

That's all for this week!!


p.s. Really enjoyed the out-takes of her hanging out with the personal trainer....5 more reps!!!

Oh and Bentley's back next week??!! That is really just wrong. Is ABC trying to kill Ashley for the sake of entertainment??? I don't think she can take it?? I don't know if I can take it!!! 

Monday, June 13, 2011

Never say never

I pretty much swore to myself that I'd never join Twitter.

Why on earth would I want people to know where I was and what I was doing all of the time? I would never want that. Not that anything I do is secretive, so I don't know why I would care. (Except when I'm being shady. Winky face) I just questioned that with Facebook and a blog, do I really need any more social media and cyber connection in my life? I always answered that question with- no and went on my merry way.

BUT, when you have a lawyer for a best friend, you tend to succumb to her powers of persuasion pretty quickly. Sarah has been telling me how much I would like Twitter for weeks now. Jenny has been on my case about it for months. Soooooo, I'm doing it.

Will I tweet? Idk. Will I love it? Probably. Here we gooooo

Tweet me!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Issues

Apparently, I'm having some formatting issues on el blog?? Specifically with the last Bachelorette post? I apologize. Trying to fix it and not having much luck. It looks normal here at work?? Weird. I'll try to fix it when I get home.

All for now except for...GO Mavs! Game 5 of the NBA playoffs tonight....I love sports.

Good-bye Matt's :(

I live in an area of Dallas called Lakewood. I immediately liked it when Robert and I found a place there about a year and a half ago. The historic Swiss avenue, the great bar scene, the fantastic restaurants and the near-by Whole Foods...something about it has a laid-back, authentic Austiny-type vibe that is lacking in the Uptown area where I spent my early years in Dallas. Please understand, I'm not bashing Uptown, I enjoyed Uptown to it's fullest while living there (unless I was clinically depressed) and still work over here and like it. Lakewood just fits me more now, especially since me is now an us. Lakewood fits us, Robert and I, we like it there.

A rumor was confirmed today about an iconic Lakewood Mexican restaurant, Matt's El Rancho. Matt's El Rancho will be turned into a Mi Cocina by mid-2012. Read about it here.

I've lived across the street from Mi Co while in Uptown and duh, I love it. It's a Dallas institution. I was taken there by one of my besties, Ashley, while still in college and determined that Mi Cocina=awesome. When I first moved to Dallas, Jenny, another bff, took me there on the Thursday of the first week of my "real" job and that's when I knew I'd survive in Dallas. (Even though, I was still drunk at work the next day.) Mambos, the Rico Salad, the tortilla soup...I could go on. Mi Co is great and filled with many great memories. 

BUT, saying that, I do have mixed feelings about it coming to Lakewood. It's almost like a McDonalds descending upon the the mom and pop restaurants. Though not quite, since Starbucks and Jack in the Box are awfully close in vicinity where the new Mi Co will go. The thing that is sad about having Mi Co instead of Matt's in Lakewood is that Matt's was different and it made Lakewood special. Every area in Dallas has a Mi Co and now Lakewood will be part of that list. Sigh. Change. Inevitable, but never easy.  Good thing the original Matt's El Rancho is a short drive away in Austin :)

I also have some fantastic memories at Matt's...

Hello, my New Mexican themed birthday dinner last year. I love my friends :)


(i was actually 27)

Thank you Matt's for being a venue for that wonderful celebratory dinner. And thank you to Sarah who planned that dinner that was supposed to be a surprise, but she told me about it. 

Another memory about Matt's will be that I fell really hard walking into Matt's 2 Friday's ago when Robert and I went on a date there. It hurt and I will remember that. I'm sure Robert will do because he saw it and had to help me get up. Not embarrassing at all. Then at dinner that night, I got salsa on my white pants and it stained them, causing me to buy new white pants. I will remember those pants and how I've managed to get every red wine stain off of them, but couldn't get the salsa out. Oh memories....

I definitely will make some more Lakewood Matt's memories before next year that will hopefully involve queso, ritas and friends. Ole! 

I spy

a pug. can you find the little darling?? (and yes, i'd love to move into this house)


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Culinary Adventures with Bob and Al: Franni's Dirt Cake Recipe Revealed

My mom makes LOTS of good things. This is just one of them. I love it, my sister really loves it, my whole family loves it. Anyone who tries it loves it. It's super good. Especially in the summer because its cool. Not cool like Zach Morris, but cool like chilly, cold, brrrr. 

It's also fun presentation-wise....


there it was in all of it's glory at the office yesterday

It looks like a flower in a flower pot right?? Lots of fun. It's also really easy to make too. A little messy, but easy.

Here's the recipe.

Franni's Dirt Cake

ingredients: 1 package of Oreos, 1/2 cup butter (softened), 8 oz. of cream cheese, 1 cup powdered sugar, 2 packages of vanilla instant pudding, 3 cups of milk and 1 12 oz. container of cool whip

-crush oreos in the food processor. set aside.
-cream together butter, cream cheese and powdered sugar
-in another large mixing bowl mix the 2 packages of vanilla instant pudding, 3 cups of milk and cool whip
-combine with butter, cream cheese and powdered sugar until smooth
-begin to layer - start with cookies (i used a 1/4 cup) then the cream mixture (i used 1 cup) end with cookies
-if using a flower pot, don't forget to put wax paper in the bottom
-also, if making for a big group, don't be afraid to double the recipe - it goes fast!

I wish I would have made a double batch because I want some right now.........but, it's all gone.

Hope you enjoy :)

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Bachelorette Season Seven: Shield My Eyes, I Can't Watch....


 
I'll just go ahead and say what we are all thinking....

BENTLEY FOR THE NEXT BACHELOR!!!
Ha. Just kidding. KIDDING. Everyone calm down. I think the women of America would form a united front and boycott ABC if this was even to be rumored. It's not rumored. I made it up, like most of the stuff I write on this blog. ha. 

I think THIS is really what we are all thinking....from my sister's facebook status last night:

I HOPE BENTLEY DIES ALONE. #thebachelorette

Now, I've never wished that on anyone. I'm guessing my sister hasn't either. What is it about Bentley's snarky ways that forces us to put him in the same tier of "people we hate" such as, Hitler? 


Is it the way he kept bringing up Emily?

Emily is not the Bachelorette. Let it go. 

Is it the way he told the camera one thing and then told Ashley something completely different?? (Which would be called lying.) Is it because he used his DAUGHTER as an excuse to leave??? (Seriously? How low can you get?)  Or is it how he knew Ashley was in love with him, but he said that she is the type of girl that he would "hook up with every once and a while" but never really date?? And I can’t even bring up the "dot dot dot" line without feeling nauseous…..

The answer is D. all of the above. We hate him for all those reasons. We hate him because he embodies that terrible guy that we've all met. You know the one. The one you met your freshmen year of college, everyone thinks he's cute and he knows it. You are introduced to him and you know he will never remember your name. He makes you feel like you are invisible and that looks ARE the only thing that matters with just one glance. He's the guy that makes you loose faith in all guys. Bentley is that guy - except he's even worse. 

What caused me to want to shield my eyes was the way that poor Ashley fell for him. She sincerely liked this guy and it just hurt me to watch her pour her heart out about him.

I could barely watch the whole escapade of when he went to tell her good-bye. I mean, it felt like hours and hours. This emotional break up and they had just spent time together on group dates? Let’s be thankful there was no one-on-one.  

I wanted to scream, "Ashley, lock it up!" and "Bentley, just be the jerk that you are!!!!" How much easier would it have been on her if he would have been the total ass that he is in real life?? It would have been a hell of a lot easier on her. Instead of heartbreak there would have been a little anger in there. A little anger goes a long way for a woman. It's the difference between listening to Celine Dion and Alanis Morissette. Ashley could have used a little anger.

Instead she was sobbing in her bed debating whether or not "this whole thing is going to work for her." And she's just now pondering this post Bentley-gate?? What about the other seasons of this show?  The track record with all the break-ups and broken relationships didn’t make her question “this whole thing”? Did she not watch the Jake and Vienna break-up special? 

EXHAUSTING. 

Bentley finally departs after more lying, maliciously leading her on and falsely comforting her. We see a devastated Ashley as the rain falls outside her scenic L.A. mansion. And scene.

Now that we've covered Bentley's massacre of Ashley's emotions...let's rewind.

I didn't see Ben C.'s date. We didn't record the first 15 minutes. I know there was a flash mob and dancing involved and I know he gets a rose. Party on, Ben.
Next up, we have the group date at the comedy club. The guys are going to roast Ashley. Great idea! Girls LOVE it when guys they barely know make fun of them on a deep personal level. Ashley claims she loves idea, she tells them to go after her. Hmm. I don’t think she really thought that one through.

Luckily for her, the guys don't take this too seriously because they don't want to insult this girl that they are trying to impress. They want a rose. Well, all the guys have that mentality, that is, except for William. William thinks he's Seinfeld and he's getting his big break on Johnny Carson. He is taking this roast seriously. This is William’s chance to be a stand up comedian. He is going to make this a TRUE roast. If William’s goal is to be in comedy, he’s on the wrong show, but who am I to judge? 

William's big break. 

The guys start roasting. Ryan M. was pretty horrific to watch. Then someone brings up Ashley's small chest and that begins to be a common theme of the roast. 80% of the guys tell a joke about her boobs. Which isn’t really that funny, but okay? Then, we get some playful insults towards the other guys. Most were thrown at the masked man, Jeff, who anti-climatically revealed his face before the date. Ashley’s reaction to the reveal of Jeff’s face - “He’s older than I thought.” Like I said, anti-climatic.

Finally, William steps up to bat. He goes right into how he thought it would be Chantal or Emily as The Bachelorette and they just got her (Ashley) as the Bachelorette. Whoopsieee. William has struck a nerve. Ashley is visibly upset. Plus, he's not even funny. Is that all the ammo he’s got?? I was expecting something more with all this hype he built up??

Ashley cries after the roast is over. Bentley sees this as an opportunity to show how fake and sick he is by acting like he cares. It makes her feel better and she gets the strength to go to the cocktail party. There, she tells the guys why she was upset and William wants to commit suicide he feels so bad.

They go to talk alone and he tells her that the only thing for her to do is to send him home because he doesn't deserve to be here now. He also says that she should go to talk to one of the other guys to make herself feel better. Must he be so extreme?? He just needs to apologize. This isn't the end of the universe. It's not like he was calling her an ugly duckling (clearing my throat - Bentely) Will leaves the cocktail party and we see him running down a busy L.A. street and crying in the confessional. Is Will's journey on The Bachelorette over?? It's too dramatic...I have to shield my eyes.

Ashley goes on and talks to the other guys. Jeff, the masked rider, goes into how he adopted a three-legged dog. I really don't know how he can be any more awkward. Ryan M. is a rock star and says the sweetest stuff to Ashley making her feel better after William stomped all over her self-esteem. They share a kiss. It's pretty cute. Really pushing for Ryan to make it to the end J.  

Ashley decides to get it all out there and confront Bentley about the texts she got warning her about him. Bentley is vague and lies. Surprise, surprise again, Bentley is a bad person.

Ryan M. gets the rose. Yay.

stay focused, man. you can do this. 

Now jumping to Ashley's date with J.P. which is postpartum depression Bentley-gate. 

J.P. assures Ashley that he is there for the right reasons. They smooch. They get pajamas. This is just like real life! J.P. loves this! He says he would rather be doing this than doing something cool like riding in a helicopter. Ppppfffftttttt. Ashley says J.P. is a better kisser than Bentley. Put that in your pipe and smoke it, Bentley.

J.P. gets the rose. And scene.

Now, it’s time for the rose ceremony. We find Ashley in the creepy room with all the candles and pictures of the guys. She’s still mourning Bentley. The tears are flowing as she turns over his picture. Chris Harrison shows up and finally talks some sense into her. Finally. I see a glimmer of hope that Ashley might realize that Bentley is in fact, “just not that into her”. Chris Harrison is phenomenal by the way.  

Ashley can't deal with the cocktail party - she's still on the emotional roller coaster from Bentley-gate and she decides to go straight to the rose ceremony. The guys are freaked out, especially William and Jeff, the masked rider.

She ends up saying good-bye to Jeff and Chris D. from Chicago.

I think Jeff just accomplished weirding everyone out and continues to do so post rose ceremony when he puts his mask in the fire and watches it burn. Okay? As for Chris, well, I can't remember anything he said, but he claims he didn’t get much of a chance. I don’t know what to say Chris except, be aggressive. B-E aggressive. This isn’t normal life, it’s the Bachelorette, where guys like Bentley succeed.

Anywayyyy, see you, boys at The Men Tell All!

Let's not forget the elephant in the room – hello - William gets a rose!!!! Which displays the lesson of the day.......forgive those that wish you were Emily Maynard. 

The End. 

Who's ready for Thailand next week????? I AM!!   

p.s. Interesting rumors about Bentley – he’ll make another appearance on the show. (That’s true from people.com) And also, that he owns a trampoline business. Really?? Is that what he’s trying to promote. This is really getting more pathetic by the minute….

Monday, June 6, 2011

Birthdays Abolished


Not in real life, just at my office. We used to have this ritual for every office birthday. The birthday boy or girl picks where they want to "order in" for lunch and what dessert they want and our boss treats the office to a lunchtime birthday celebration. Then we all sit in the conference room and eat our lunch and dessert and try to talk to each other, until we sing happy birthday and then it's safe to go back to work

I thought birthdays at the office were just painful for me, but now that they are abolished, I assume that I'm not alone. Everyone mutually agreed that we didn't want to deal with it anymore. And now, here we are, a no birthday celebrating office.

Birthdays were painful for me because I have to get everyone's order for lunch and go pick it up. My job is very multi-faceted. Waitress is one of the facets. It's sounds simple, but no, no, it was never simple. This is because my colleagues seemed to get confused that I'm not actually a waitress at the chosen restaurant and ask me questions about the menu. When I first began working, I would go to any length to answer their ridiculous questions about the menus. Eventually, I realized that they can deal with it. "I don't know what kind of bread they make that sandwich with. and I don't know if that comes with fries. I've never been there. I don't work there." Why do they think I know these things? They also begin acting like this is the LAST meal they will ever eat and that what they order for lunch is an extremely crucial decision. Just get the crispy chicken salad!!! It will be fine!!! Sigh. And then if I get back to the office with all the food and something is missing or wrong with an order. Oh the drama that ensues.........

Saying that, all that nonsense was usually worth it for two reasons: 1. we were celebrating someone's birthday, making them feel special (yes, i'm cheesey) and b. dessert. I'm a dessert person, so desserts really awakens that fat kid that lives inside of me and makes me very happy. So, since, birthdays at work meant dessert I could handle the rest of it. It was especially fun when the office was on this big Sprinkles kick and we would get Sprinkles for every birthday. That was a good time.


amazing. 

Tomorrow is someone's birthday at work and even though we are not supposed to acknowledge it, I will be making a dessert and bringing it to the office. I have to hold on to one birthday work tradition. I refuse to listen what anybody says, everyone wants something sweet on their birthday. I will be making my mom's famous dirt cake. She makes it every April for my sister's birthday. Neal family favorite! Also, I'm going to put it in a flower pot with a fake flower so it looks like real dirt. The birthday girl is a gardener, so it makes sense. Pictures and recipe posted tomorrow. Robert will ask me why I'm making this tonight and I will tell him that I have to support my beliefs. I believe in dessert. Birthday lunches can fade at the office, but dessert. Dessert will live on.

Friday, June 3, 2011

thoughts

This moment, I'm thankful that the week is winding down....it's almost here...can you feel it???

Freedom is almost here!!! Doesn't this picture just make you think of FREEDOM? They look awfully free.

Our weekend is wide open and free of any planned event. A weekend of freedom. But, with this freeness, I do plan to clean a lot, cook a little, read a little, yoga a little and relax a lot. I also plan to reflect and be thankful for friends, family and health and to pray specifically for people on my heart and mind. Sometimes we just need to stop being a busy bee and use our freedom to be still. Stillness is hard sometimes. Life is hard sometimes. When it gets too hard and there's nothing we can do, the only thing to do is be still and pray. Faith, time and the angels around us take care of the rest. My angels are have been my friends and family...over and over again.

All for now....and remember.... :) xo

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Bachelorette Season Seven: Viva Las Vegas!

Hey, sick-o's (like me that care about the Bachelorette), how are we this week?? One less day in the office, I'll take it, right? Since, we are a bit delayed this week due to having Monday off, so is the re-cap...my apologies to those of you that have been refreshing this blog every 10 minutes praying for the highly acclaimed exclusive reviews here of The Bachelorette's antics on Monday evenings.

Okay, here it goes...

William gets the first date and it's a one on one??!! Lucky dog!! Cell phone salesman has GAME!!!! I see free text messaging in Ashley's future. Speaking of luck...off the two lovebirds go to Sin City!!! What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas!! Unless you are on reality television that is.....

Ashley's clothes choice was interesting. Loved the leather jacket, confused about the short tight white dress. But, that all unfolds itself as we see what the their day consists of. Wedding cake tasting...ring shopping, so basically wedding planning?? White dress for the theme of the day. GREAT job, Bachelorette producers...guys LOVE that!! I wish I would have worn white on my first date with Robert, displaying to him how ready I was to be a BRIDE! Ashley knows what's going down here with her little white dress. And don't forget...they are in Vegas, they could just tie the knot right there. What is going ON here? A day of wedding planning leading up to the wedding. Oh boy...

As I hinted, I don't think the producers really thought this one all the way through. According to my survey it is safe to say that 98% of men want nothing to do with anything "wedding planning related". Yes, they want to buy the ring, maybe talk about the music at the reception and be sure that there is ample booze involved, but everything else is up to the woman.

Also, let's remember that they are on their first date. Let's chill on the wedding talk? Isn't there anything else to do in Vegas?? The M&M factory? That roller coaster?? Anything?? Cake tasting and ring shopping should make Big Willy Style break into hives. He clearly is unsure about what this date is about. While cake tasting, he says that the cakes, "seem like wedding cakes, but maybe Ashley is just hungry and wanted cake..." What did he tell himself when they were trying on rings? Ashely just wants to buy a new ring? Poor thing. He says, "I mean, I know it's a joke...." but he is pretty flushed. Seriously, though, did he seriously think they would get married and then the season would be over? No, I'm guessing not. A legally binding union is not going to take place between Ashley and William.


Which could explain why Will said "I do..." and Ashley said, "I...will...maybe later?" or something like that. Eeehhhh. Awkward. Then they share their first kiss during their faux wedding ceremony. 

Somewhere along this blissful day, Ashley claims that this is her best first date ever.

DOTH MY EARS DECEIVE ME?? 

Ashley's best first date WAS her carnival date with Brad Womack. I know this because they stated it over and over to each other throughout the date. "This is the best first date, I've ever had!" 

no more is this the reigning champ of first dates for Ashley H. r.i.p. 

Back to William and Ashley in Vegas. She says she knows that William is "fun" but, she's looking for someone who can be "serious" too. So, Ashley's mental bullet points of key personality traits in a man she wants to marry go as follows:
  • fun
  • serious
What does that even mean? What is serious and how serious does he need to get? Does he like need to read National Geographic and watch the History Channel? No, that's not really what it means. What it means is that William better buck up and share something tragic and difficult about his past. Voila! He delivers. William had a bad relationship with his father. :(. His father tragically died and now his watch is set to the time of his father's death reminding him to live life to it's fullest. :(. Ashley relates. Her dad is an alcoholic and has been in and out of her life. :(.  She immediately feels a bond. It is the daddy issues that binds them. Oh and they are sharing this with each other while sitting in the middle of the Bellagio fountains. Not to shabby. Props to the producers at ABC for coming up with that doozie.

btw, i've been to Vegas 3 times and never seen the fountains. 

William gets the rose. Score! 

Still wonder what wireless company he works for....AT&T, T-mobile, Verizon, Sprint?? 

Onward to date numero dos. It's a group date, hold on tight, this is sure to be a bumpy ride. 12 dudes board the private plane to Vegas. And what will they be doing there....dancing!! Ashley wants to show these boys that she can m-o-v-e.
get it gurrrl. 

The arrive and walk into a rehearsal of the dance crew the JabbaWockeez. They watch them perform, probably processing they are going to have to dance on prime time television when Ashley surprisingly pops up at the end of the performance. Just like magic! She then tells the guys to split into groups two groups and make up a short dance routine. The winning group gets to stay in Vegas and preform with the JabbaWockeez. Party! The losers get to go back to the mansion and play beer pong. 

The groups name themselves the "The Best Men" and the "No Rhythm Nation". The Best Men only incorporate Ashley in a little bit of their performance, during which they mimic a wedding ceremony and the No Rhythm Nation incorporates Ashley in their entire routine which is supposed to be a dance interpretation of a rose ceremony. Both groups get an A for effort, but the JabbaWockeez decide that the "No Rhythm Nation" takes the prize. Or did they? It was probably the producers making sure that Bentley hung around so he could get America really riled up with his awfulness. 

there's the Vegas group date on stage channeling New Kids on the Block

So, the 6 boys of No Rhythm Nation and Ashley perform in front of thousands with the JabbaWockeez and are feeling pretty good about themselves and then retire to cocktails on the rooftop, while the men take turns wooing Ashley. One of them declares, "we were a team today, but now it's everyman for himself." Here comes the testosterone. 

Blake the dentist pulls Ashley aside and she shares her concern with him that they might have too much in common. Two type A personalities might be too much for one relationship? Is that a country song? She tells Blake, "I am a perfectionist." Well, Ash, that will make guys DYING to marry you. Blake says, "they will be twice as perfect together." Awww. 

While talking to Blake, she gets pulled away by West. She says she really wants to get to know West and she is glad that he pulled her away. I'm thinking, Are you sure you want to get to know him? Because, if so, shit is about to get real. West and Ashley go sit on the stage and West tells her about how he had a wife that passed away. :(. While I do think West's story is very sad and he did need to share it, it did seem a little much for the Mandalay Bay in Vegas. I think Ashley used the word heavy. Definitely heavy. But, of course, Ashley is touched glad that West opened up and told her that. Let down those walls, West. 

Then - duh duh DUH- Bentley pulls Ashley away. He's told the camera that: a. she's not his type, but has a nice but and legs b. he's not in this for the long run, c. the competition part is what makes fun and finally d. it would be fun if she would tickle his pickle. But ABC bleeped out the word pickle. So, obviously he's terrible and inevitably, Ashley's crazy about him. 

They are laying on some type of couch thing and I feel like she is making herself keep a distance because she wants to pounce him. He mutters like 3 words about his daughter and all of the sudden she is begging him to stay if he has any feelings at all. She also somehow assumes that Bentley is being like she was on The Bachelor? That's weird, I didn't pick up on that. The pleading proceeds. "Please, please, please..." She said please like 8 times. I was thinking, GIRL, you have got to PLEASE stop. He is playing you like a $2 banjo. (I got that phrase of the West Wing. Thank you Aaron Sorkin) Bentley is very pleased with his conquer telling the cameras something like, "this is too easy..." Bentley, you are so effing cool, I can't even tell you. Doesn't feel good to be so bad? Soon, you might join the ranks of Jason Mesnik, Brad Womack, Wes the country singer (last name...idk right now ppffftt) and be America's most hated man because of your actions on this show if you keep this up! You are effing rad!!! 

ashley saying please, please, PLEASE....

The date ends and Bentley gets the rose proving all women are gullible and stupid and we move on. Yes, West probably should have got the rose after his revelation of his wife dying, but no, Ashley says, she is giving the rose to "someone who gave up a lot to be here." ppppfffffttttt. Ashley gave Bentley the rose because he's cuter, sorry, West, try again later. Bentley is ready to play blackjack now. Stay classy, Bentley.
jp to the left/mickey to right

Next up J.P. and Mickey flip a coin to see who will go on the next one on one date. A one on one, leaving that to the fate of a coin?! This is crazy!!! Mickey wins and off to Vegas he goes. Lo siento, J.P. 

Mickey and Ashley continue the theme and keep flipping a coin through their entire date. I kind of like that because it is a theme and I love a theme. NST! Never Stop Themeing!! (inside joke-sorry) Anyway, Mickey and Ashley have a grand old time wine tasting, talking about how his mom passed away :( and then a surprise performance from Colbie Caillat!! I know 2 of her songs if I hear them on the radio or in a grocery store, but I wouldn't have known who that was on the stage in a million years. Robert had never even heard of her. The look on Mickey's face said that Colbie Calliat was his favorite artist or that he thought she was someone else.

Colbie Calliat??!!!

Ashley is definitely feeling Mickey, (she likes Mama's boys) but to keep with the theme she suggests they flip a coin to see if she's going to give him a rose or not. What?! Mickey doesn't like these odds. She was going to give him the rose either way. Phew! Mickey the chef in the clear, put that rose on his lapel. And scene.

It's time for the rose ceremony and you know what that means- scorned Bachelors that didn't get anytime with Ashley and gloating Bachelors that already have roses. These two wrongs do not make a right.

J.P. goes in for the kill right away and parlays the whole coin toss bit into snagging kiss with Ashley. Those New Yorkers are smooth. William gets more time with Ashley causing West to make a snide remark. 

Then the masked man, Jeff, the entrepreneur, steps in. They have this secret creepy meeting in the stairwell. Oh but it's not a secret because the cameras are rolling. He tells her that he had a brain hemorrhage and his wife found him having a seizure on the bathroom floor and since then his life hasn't been the same. :(

Now, here's where I'm going to STOP and say these guys have got to calm down with the sad stories. How am I going to make fun and judge them?? It's making it a real struggle. I was ready to come out guns blazing with Jeff the masked rider, but now I feel like a real jerk if I were to post pictures of Zorro or The Phantom of the Opera and compare them to Jeff. You can't make fun of the guy that had a brain hemorrhage. Not to mention, William's dad passing away, West's wife tragically dying and Mickey's mom passing away. I know that death is part of life and this stuff happens but, GEES, boys, I'm about to wear black on Monday nights and just get ready to be in mourning. (That's not extreme at all.)

Anyway, Jeff, goes on to tell Ashley that he and his wife split up after his hemorrhage due to "untruthfulness"...whatever that means...and then he says he is ready to take off his mask. She confirms that she would love that. As he begins to lift the mask off his face for the first time, Matt steps into the stairwell and asks to speak to Ashley. Great timing, Matt. Jeff might kill you in your sleep now. The mask has got to be feeling a little uncomfortable at this point. But, Ashely steps away with Matt and Jeff fears he won't get a rose, since, well, she hasn't even seen his face. 

Matt and Ashley have an unmemorable convo and then Bentley steals her away. He carries her over to the fireplace declares that he is sick of talking and they kiss. Bentley tells the camera later that it was kind boring. Ashley tells the camera later that her gut tells her to trust him. This is sure to end well!!

Ashley says good-bye to Matt, Ryan M. and Stephen. Matt is the one who called his mom with Ashley. Ashley tells Matt to tell his mom, Gail that she said hello. Eeehhhhh. The family is already involved...awkward. But, Matt makes it better and hilariously calls his mom and leaves a message that Ashley isn't in love with him and that she needs to pick him up at the airport in 5 hours. ha. Ryan M. and Stephen leave with dignity. God's speed boys.

I personally missed Tim at the party....

umm, excuse me, Tim, you're on a TV show right now....would you like to wake up??

Tim confirmed to people.com this week that "the next morning was a giant fog". I believe that's called a hangover? He also said this sort of thing never happens to him, but maybe in the future he'll stick to club soda on first dates. Good call, T-money. Life's a dance you learn as you go....Sometimes you lead, sometimes you're on The Bachelorette.

On that note, I'll end. Can't wait for Bentley's dramatic departure next week....