Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Spring Cleaning

First order of business: I have chopped off my hair in anticipation of summer. Huzzah!

I've also been giving my work area a haircut of sorts. Lots of reorganizing, sorting, and throwing things away. I wish I had some before photos, because this place was a mess. Jumbled, dirty, disorganized, gross. Nothing was labeled or dated (two huge imperatives in a kitchen) and it was impossible to see what we had in stock. I've been getting jiggy with the tape, sharpies, and plastic storage containers:

Here's a funny little story from work. We have this mammoth oven I like to call The Beast. It's built into one wall and is basically five huge shelves that rotate around in a circle. This is one of the shelves:
In the belly of The Beast:So one night last week, I hear what sounds like knocking. The oven is near one of the back doors, so I thought it was just someone outside. No one was there, so I ignored it and went about my business. When it came time to take my cookies out of the oven, I opened the door to find two normal trays of cookies, and one mangled parchment sheet of cookie carcasses on the shelf, with no tray to be seen. Finally I look closer, and see that my poor sheet tray had been bent in half and was lying crumpled on the floor of the oven. Apparently if the trays stick out the tiniest bit over the rim of the shelves, they get caught in the gears and eaten by The Beast. Sheet trays are sturdy, so there is some serious power in this oven. We've kept it around the kitchen and are thinking of giving it a face and a name--sort of a totem or mascot for us.


Sunday, April 20, 2008

Stompin' Grounds

Guess where I went last weekend? Here's a hint:

Here's an even bigger hint:
Yes, back to the old stomping grounds! Jason presented his first! academic! paper! at a conference in Claremont on Saturday, so I went down to cheer him on (and by the way, his was totally the best, both in terms of content and presentation, he's an academic rock star). A bout of nostalgia made me walk through the Scripps campus before I left town.

The campus looked exactly the same. It's hard to believe that I graduated five years ago this May. Our reunion is the same weekend as my brother's wedding, so it's fitting that I took this side trip since I won't be able to attend the official reunion weekend. This was my senior year dorm:

I had a sweet second-story pad with a balcony overlooking the rose garden. Aforementioned garden:The garden is bordered by Graffiti Wall, where each graduating class paints a themed mural and signs their names. The most infamous is the "hanging graduates," a mural from the 1930's depicting a group of cap and gown-clad women hanging from gallows. They didn't mess around back then! Our "Women Under Construction" theme was considerably tamer. Look, Ma, I'm a tagger:My old friend, the Humanities Goat. He has suffered more indignities--and been outfitted in more costumes--than I can mention. I particularly liked his toga party outfit.
Artist: Elizabeth LaBau
Medium: Digital Photography
Title: Self-Portrait With Goatstache, 2008
The Motley was hopping as usual. All of those studious folks brought back competing feelings of nostalgia and relief that I don't have to write a senior thesis ever again.
Kicking it with La Semuse, one last time:


Saturday, April 12, 2008

Shareen Vintage

A few years ago, a stylist friend raved about a great vintage dress store she had found. "Amazing selection," she said. "Brilliant discovery," she said. "Hidden gem," she said.

How hidden?

Let's just say I got a little nervous while trying to find this place. I drove from the freeway to a large street, to a smaller street, to a semi-paved road with lots of sketchy loiterers walking down the trolley tracks in the center. I had to stop myself from doing that obnoxious yuppie lock-the-car-doors-while-looking-casual thing.
I actually missed it the first time around. I was on the correct street, trying to find numbers on the warehouses, and came to a dead end. I gambled that the vintage store wasn't housed in someone's RV, and turned around.
Success! A true sign that I found the right place.
They weren't kidding about no boys allowed. The selection is wonderfully, exuberantly feminine, with lots of frothy party dresses. Most of the merchandise is vintage, but the owner designed her own clothing line for awhile, so there are some new pieces as well. There are also monster bargains: most dresses were priced between $25-65, and many of them were gorgeous.
Another reason no men are allowed: no dressing rooms! Lots of half-nekkid ladies running around, stripping down in front of the mirrors to change. I made like a prude and changed behind some curtains...I guess I'm not as bohemian as I used to be.
The space is a large warehouse, with oversized comfy furniture juxtaposed with racks of clothes and artwork on the huge walls.
This store also offered two of my favorite things: orange accessories......and free food! A veritable smorgasborg for the taking. Power shoppers need to keep up our strength, you know.
I sadly didn't find a dress for my brother's wedding (although I finally found one today at another store, yesss) but I fell in love with this charming place and will definitely be back. Mwa!

Shareen Vintage
350 North Avenue 21
Los Angeles, Ca. 90031
(323) 276-6226
Open Wednesdays & Saturdays, 10-5
Sundays 12-6


The Duce

The scene: LA Fitness on Hollywood, Friday morning. I've just finished my workout, and I'm sweaty, hungry, and feeling like someone just pounded me with a baseball bat. I'm stumbling down the stairs, bone-tired and not looking where I'm going. Who do I quite literally run into?

Yes, the creepy man-child himself, Danny Bonaduce. He was sans bow tie but plus a shirt, which is the kind of math I endorse. He was also about five-five, which perhaps explains his life of tragic overcompensation/underperformance.


Sunday, April 06, 2008

The Original White Meat

A few months ago I decided to start eating chicken again. I've been doing a fantastic workout program called Turbulence Training* and, among many other benefits, it's made me pay more attention to my diet and to the macronutrient ratios I eat each day. In an effort to seriously up my protein intake, I've been eating chicken breast on a regular basis for the first time in over a decade.

Ethical quibbles aside, we've been enjoying culinary experimentation and the greater variety and meal flexibility. Since these pictures would be out of place on the dessert blog (debatably--they don't contain cake, but they DO contain death) they get featured here. First up: blurry Easter dinner. Chicken roulade, roasted balsamic veggies, and garlic-rosemary roasted (purple!) baby potatoes.

The chicken was stuffed with a mixture of chevre (soft goat cheese), sun-dried tomatoes, roasted red peppers, caramelized onions and garlic, and other spices. I had to pound it flat with a rolling pin, which is NOT easy due to the rolling nature of said pin. Since then I have procured a meat mallet. Who would have thought?
This is from two days ago. Pesto grilled chicken on a salad containing heirloom tomatoes and grilled orange bell peppers, with shaved parmesan on top.
Since I'm now a chickenphile, feel free to pass along your favorite (healthyish) chicken breast recipes!

*Yes, the website looks terrible and no, it is not an "as seen on TV" scam, all appearance to the contrary.


Wednesday, April 02, 2008

I can handle the truth

Update: Internet, you are awesome! Thanks to your straight talk I can see the green purse for the mediocre accessory that it is. I think I'll let the Internet determine my spending habits every day.


Tuesday, April 01, 2008


First, I was tagged by Carrie with this relationship meme. Then Jason, unbidden, brought me some gorgeous tulips. Subconsciously buttering me up to get good answers? Perhaps. I'll take it!

Where did you go on your first date? Lunch and a lecture at Pomona. This is what happens when nerds date.
How long have you been together? Married almost 4 years, together almost 6 (yow)
Who eats more? Jason can eat more at one sitting, but I probably eat more throughout the day--he forgets to eat and I'm ALWAYS hungry
Who said I love you first? He did--the second day we were dating! I figured he was either psycho or psychic.
Who is taller? Jason, fo sho
Who sings better? He definitely sings a lot MORE. I can't take him grocery shopping because he'll sing down the aisles
Who does the laundry? Jason (That's man's work)
Who pays the bills? Jason (man's work)
Who mows the lawn? no lawn, but I tend the potted plants
Who cooks dinner? I cook, Jason does the dishes. (Man's work for the hat trick!)
Who drives when you are together? I do, probably 90% of the time
Who is more stubborn? Me. I'm also more competitive and more spiteful. I don't know why he married me...
Whose parents do you see the most? I think I see mine more, and he sees his more
Who kissed who first? I dove in!
Who proposed? He proposed and completely surprised me
Who is more sensitive? Sensitive like thoughtful? Jason. Sensitive like touchy? Me.
Who has more friends? We are both exceedingly popular people
Who has more siblings? He beats me by one
Who wears the pants in the family? Yeah, that's me

Now I tag...Amber, Chadlee, and Meaghan