Friday, February 26, 2010

Five for Friday

1. So we're back from Barbados. It was a fantastic trip. Tied with our cruise last August on which was more relaxing - no, wait, our cruise kept me up all night with the rocking of the boat. Dad's guest bedroom didn't rock back and forth. Barbados wins. We had a grand, lazy time: sleeping in; reading on the balcony; bobbing in the clear, aqua water; lunching at the Carib Beach Bar, steps from the ocean. I hope to have some more pictures up later today; for now, I'll leave you with this:

2. Have you been watching the Olympics? They are wrecking havoc on my sleeping habits, but so fun to watch! I think my favorite sport is bobsled. Or ski jumping. Or speed skating. Or curling. Or hockey. Or pretty much all of them :)

3. Speaking of the Olympics, did you hear about the rather inappropriate celebration that followed the Canadian women's hockey team winning gold yesterday? Cigars, beer and champagne, enjoyed by those of age and underage, right on the ice, nearly an hour after the medal ceremony. Certainly this is not the way Canadians want to be represented to the rest of the world? I have met many nice Canadian women and can't imagine that this is a regular thing for most of them. It will be interesting to see what the IOC has to say (although it seems like they're not saying much about anything these Olympics *cough* whiny Yevgeny Plushenko making up a platinum medal *cough*).

4. This morning it was time to head back to the gym in three weeks to work out with my personal trainer. It's amazing how being sick (week 1), a ridiculous amount of snow (week 2), and a relaxing vacation (week 3) can really wreck havoc on your exercise schedule. But it felt awesome to be back in the gym, doing something healthy, and pushing my body just hard enough. Also, apparently I roll my shoulders forward. Must try to improve on this, so if you see me doing it, tell me to sit up straight!

5. As much as I enjoy traveling, I am tickled pink that we will be here in good ol' D.C. for the next five weeks. Will allow us time to recoup, get back into a healthy eating/working out routine and get rested up for the craziness that is our April/May travel schedule!

Happy weekend everyone!!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

List 1 - Places I Want to Travel

(in no particular order)
Spain - all of it
Florence - again, because I fell in love the first time
Badlands National Park
Buenos Aires
UNESCO World Heritage Site in Petra, Jordan
Costa Rica
New Zealand
the Dalmatian Coast
Las Vegas
Quebec City
French Polynesia
Cape Town
Arches National Park
Canadian Rockies
Iguazu Falls - Brazil or Argentina side
New Orleans
St. John, USVI
Galapagos Islands
Easter Island
San Francisco

This list could be, seemingly, endless.

List Love

I love lists. I love the satifying feeling of crossing off. Checking off. One of my favorite blogs, Hula Seventy, decided to do a 52 lists project - basically blogging a list a week. So I'm jumping on board. Every wednesday. Just because, well, I love lists!

PS Thanks to this cool site for list ideas

Monday, February 22, 2010

Friday, February 12, 2010

Five for Friday

1. The snow. If you've been reading my blog, you have seen the insane 55" of snow that we have gotten. I have never seen so much snow in my entire life. We haven't really left our little neighborhood - thank goodness that we have restaurants that are lunch-yummy within walking distance! It seems that the snow has finally subsided, but I think we all have one eye to the sky, as you can never really be sure when the white death will begin falling again!

2. Yesterday's project was digging my car out. When I started, it looked like this: When I finished, it looked like this:
It is about 3/4 of the way dug out, with a nice circumference of no snow around almost all of it. A big shout out to Brad who cleaned off the hood and roof after the second blizzard earlier this week. Of course, I feel like I'm about 98 years old today - very sore from my hour of shoveling!

3. Yesterday, we invited over one of our neighbors, whose husband has been out of town all week and has been stuck indoors like we have been. It was great fun to have some human interaction that wasn't with Brad (no offense honey!). Even better, she is extremely well traveled, so she was great to talk to. She lived in London twice when she was younger and has traveled all over Europe and Asia - I think she even convinced Brad to visit Istanbul! :)

4. One of (few) best things about being snowed in has been all the cooking we've done. I've got another post ready to go later today featuring the homemade pizza we've rocked twice this week.

5. Barbados. Ahhh good ol' Barbados. We will hopefully (knock on wood, cross your fingers and toes!) be boarding a plane to JFK tomorrow evening, hanging out for a few hours at the Days Inn JFK and then heading back to the airport to fly to Barbados. Oh Barbados, how I have missed you!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Day 5 post-big snow; Day 1 of blizzard; Day 6 of not leaving the house

"What day of the week is it?" I honestly can't believe I asked Brad that question this morning. That's what happens when you haven't left your little four block radius around your house in almost a week and haven't ridden in a car since... oh wow, a week! A week ago today, I was at the grocery store, stocking up on provisions for this supposed "winter storm" we were going to have. Well, I'm now a believer, since it has also been blizzarding for the past 24 hours. It has finally stopped doing anything out and Brad is out, once again, digging his car out of the snow. Mine? An absolute lost cause... you can't even tell it's a car, with the exception of a little tiny part of the rear view mirror that's visible.

I'd be surprised if we have work tomorrow, as there has been a lot of blowing and drifting snow and above-ground Metro doesn't like big snow drifts. Fingers crossed for Friday! Fingers even more crossed for our flight outta here Saturday night!!!!


some mega icicle that formed overnight

clean up begins... again

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

how to make an awesome cold weather lunch

We have pretty much been living off these things since the snow started (and a modified version of it is usually our daily brown bag work lunch).

Ingredients (makes one sandwich):
- 2 oz low-sodium turkey
- 2 slices of your favorite bread (I like whole wheat deli-flats, which are only 100 calories each!)
- your favorite butter/margarine/butter-type spread
- cheese (I like Swiss, which is low in sodium!)

1. First, set up your Griddler/George Foreman Grill with griddle plates/good ol' flat, square griddle pan. Heat it up to a good medium-high heat.

2. Butter one side of your bread. If you're using a bread like my favorite deli-flats, butter than non-crusty side.

3. Put your bread butter side down onto the hot griddle.

4. Assemble your sandwiches with turkey and cheese. You can use one piece of cheese or, if you're my husband, sneak two pieces on there.

5. When it starts getting a little bubbly, and the cheese starts to melt around the edges, it's time to put the two halves together.

6. Let it cook for a little bit as a whole sandwich, flipping it once or twice to get both sides nice and brown and crispy.

7. Close your griddler to give the sandwich a nice press and a final sizzle. If you're using a griddle pan, you can squish it down with a spatula.
8. And then you're done!

I think it makes a perfect lunch with a piece of fruit!

Day 4: no work, lotsa snow

Day 4. No work (again) today because the Metro still isn't running regularly above ground - I now haven't been to my office since Thursday. Have to fight for the Internet connection with Brad, since we are both trying to work from home on one Internet connection. They just brought construction equipment into our parking lot to try and move some of the snow... because we are supposed to get 10 - 20 more inches of the white stuff tonight.

Oh yeah, and our flight to Barbados was already cancelled. Yup, two days in advance. So now we leave Saturday night, spend the night at JFK airport (in a near-by hotel actually) and fly to Barbados on a ridiculously long 5 1/2 hour flight Sunday. At least my toes will be in sand before the week is out.

One last thing? Gary the snowman says hello. I think he's the only one who likes all this snow.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Snow, snow and more snow

I am in absolute disbelief that we are supposed to get another 10 - 20 inches of snow tomorrow night and Wednesday. I also refuse to think about what that means for our 6am flight Thursday morning. But I'm not in enough disbelief to not have sent Brad back to the grocery store tonight to stock up on more provisions just in case (good thing we dug out the car yesterday!). We did not have work today, since both our office's follow the federal government's status for those sorts of things. While this sounds appealing, it's really getting quite boring only leaving the house to go shovel. So we decided to set out this afternoon for lunch at Hard Times Cafe, conveniently located about five blocks away. Of course the sidewalks along the direct route weren't shoveled, so we took the nice city walking path, which was completely snow and ice free (makes me wonder why our street looks like a skating rink, but the stupid walking path is clear...). We had a lovely lunch, and it was SO nice to get out of the house. On the way back, we even stopped to make a snowman and named him Gary.

So, there you have it. I give it about a 50-50 chance that we will have work tomorrow. Most school's are still closed, Metro is still not running above ground and the streets are, well, lousy. Here's to more snow!

our street, still snowed in

Sunday, February 7, 2010

When snow is nice

In the midst of all this crazy snowpocalypse this weekend, I almost forgot about the pretty snow we got last week. We got about four or five inches overnight, and it was an absolutely beautiful walk to the Metro the next day. Here's a remind that, sometimes, snow is nice.

Things I love about snowy weekends

1. catching up on my blogs with a homemade skim latte (thank you awesome milk frother I got for having enough tickets at an arcade in Marion, Ohio!) in my favorite mug

2. enjoying the view from indoors

3. catching up on my favorite movies

(yes, I know, could my taste in movies be any more random? the even sadder part? they BOTH make me cry!)

4. busting open a fantastic bottle of wine, just to to celebrate the snow

special bonus this snowy weekend: the Super Bowl is on tonight - Go Colts!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Snow? Why yes, we have some of that

Well, I will admit that I was skeptical about this "record snowfall." I was skeptical as it began falling from the sky yesterday. I was skeptical as it fell throughout the night and day today. My skepticism ended when I headed downstairs to shovel today. Yikes. Actual snow accumulation is probably only about 16"-18" by us, certainly not record, but there are some crazy drifts in our parking lot that are literally thigh-high.

Quite frankly, as long as some sort of four-wheel drive vehicle can make it down the main road we live off of to the main road that the airport is on by Thursday morning at about 4:30am, I could really care less about what happens between now and then. Heck, maybe I won't even have to go back to work until after we get back from sunning ourselves in the tropics :)

the view at about 10am this morning

snow is over, beautiful sunset!

lots of digging out to do!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Five for Friday

1. Well, we here in D.C. are doing what one might call hunkering down. See, we're supposed to get anywhere between 18 - 30 inches of snow this weekend. It's going to be a heck of a lot of the white stuff. I worked from home today to avoid the nightmare that commuting into D.C. and back for a few hours of work, but Brad braved it and made it home safely about 30 minutes ago. It has been snowing since about 10:30 and so far we have zero additional inches of snow - it's not sticking to anything! We shall see if the predictions come true...

2. Since we're basically stuck inside for the near future, we have been loading up on DVD's, books, magazines and lots of HGTV. In between solving work issues this morning (hey, cancer fighting doesn't stop just because of a little snow!), I went through our massive collection of framed photographs and mapped out where they're going to be hung around the house. It will probably be art overload, but I love a full wall and it's better than having them sit in a pile in our guest room/office/art storage room.

3. Bright and early Thursday morning, we leave for Barbados. I am confident that we will be dug out (at least partially) by then and that my toes will soon be in white sand. The best part of this trip is that my grandparents will be there for part of the time too! The worst part is that it will probably be out last trip there :(

4. I have to be honest, I'm really skeptical about this snowpocalypse... I mean, I kind of hope I'm wrong, so that we get lots of fun snow, but it just seems disappointing right now. I expect to wake up to a white out tomorrow morning.

5. That's it. Sorry... it has been snow talk 24/7 here, so that's really all that's on the ol' mind. An extremely boring five for Friday. I promise more excitement in two weeks when I'm back from Barbados!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Wallpaper Wednesday

One of my favorite travel photography blogs, the Digital Trekker, does something fun every month that I thought I would try out: he posts, in various sizes, a photo that you can use as wallpaper on your desktop, laptop, smart phone, etc. Since I hate boring wallpaper backgrounds, I am always playing around with mine to see what fits my mood. My current one is the photo of palm trees that I blogged yesterday, but I thought I would share a different one with you.

Since it's chilly in much of the U.S. right now, how about a perfect view to warm you up?

Small - 240x160

Medium - 500x333

Large - 1024x681

Mega - 2804x1864

Makes a superb BlackBerry background!