… shaking it off… and heading out in search of balance…

Posts tagged ‘friends’

live long and prosper…

that’s right…

anne is a trekkie, and we threw her a star trek, voyager birthday party!

she was captain janeway (obviously) and JR was her first officer, chakotay

uhura showed up… in more than one form!


and she hooked up with spock

and with worf!

haley and desi rocked the deep space nine bodysuits (how awesome are they!?!?)


chakotay found he had the hots for deanna troi

and maybe the hots for spock and captain kirk too??

captain janeway made sure her first officer was up to speed…

friends came from many quadrants to join the festivities



there were plenty of star trek eats… all inspired by our favorite cookbook





there was janeway birthday cake

we partied on the transporter


we weren’t sure if some guests were from outerspace or the land of elves??

the drinks were flowing (romulan ale, klingon blood wine, maporian ale, and trixian bubble juice)

we’re pretty sure spock had a few drinks b/c he started photo bombing…


and as i believe tends to happen given the strength of the romulan ale… some people started gettin frisky!







space… the final frontier!

spanish nights

heyyyyyyyyy!!

i love the “i’m so not impressed” look…

a couple weeks ago our friend JR was hiding out at our place while his wife studied for the bar exam (ughhhh those words still make me cringe!! BAR EXAM = HORRIBLE) anywayyyy… we all got caught up in watching a Throwdown, where Bobby took on the “Paella King of Northern California”

ever since… we have all been talking about getting together to make paella… so last night… we did it up spanish style!

Nikki and JR had been remodeling their kitchen, so i was excited to test it out now that the remodel is complete!

it’s such an amazing transformation, and it’s so THEM (interpretation: JR got a “pot filler” above the stove and nikki got completely organized shelves)

who wouldn’t want to cook in this kitchen!?!?

as soon as we walked in, JR got the sangria flowin…

we wanted to really do the paella fresh and from scratch.

while anne and JR got right to work…

nikki and i ran some errands in preparation for anne’s birthday party in less than TWO weeks! we have some big fun planned… but are keeping the details a secret. trust me though… it’s going to make for a killer post!

by the time we got back to the house, it was clear that anne and JR had been enjoying themselves…

but despite the sangria induced shenanigans… the spanish masterpiece was coming right along!

as they put on the finishing touches…

i tossed together a salad…

the paella was SO flavorful, and while i probably would have taken a shortcut, nikki and JR were so smart to get the fresh seafood!! it was hard work, but fun, yummy, and actually… such a pretty dish!!

it was a successful spanish night!!

do you try to buy fresh seafood or are you ok rolling with the frozen stuff?

and as for some trashy tv… bachelor thoughts? new bachelorette thoughts??

vday threesome

happy vday y’all!

so even though i’m generally opposed to this “holiday”, yesterday, i suppose we, in a way, celebrated vday… with a threesome!

bow chica bow wow

it was a really kinky fun day!

well, prior to hooking up the threesome, we started the day with breakfast froyo (that’s right. i skipped breakfast and begged anne to get me froyo, since we had to pop into the mall to get her mammy a bday present)

oh how i do love frozen yogurt… heck, it’s possible i like it as much as kraut

a new place opened near our house, “orange tree” and i’ve been dying to give it a whirl!

i got just enough to satisfy my craving (it was less than $2 if that tells you how little i got)… pomegranate/vanilla topped with a tiny bit of shredded coconut and granola.

how cute are their spoons!?!?

we snagged a bday present for sharona, and headed to her birthday lunch at mccormick and schmick’s, which is a somewhat popular chain in portland, yet this was to be my inaugural outing.

i had a spinach salad with fennel, craisins, almonds, and a really light dressing

i’m always a fan of the spinach/fennel combo!

then i randomly went with jambalaya (crab, shrimp, spicy chicken sausage, veggies)

not something i would normally ever order, but i didn’t want anything fried, and perhaps my impending vday threesome had me thinking SPICY???

it was pretty good (TWSS- yes i did)… no complaints.

then, b/c it was sharona’s birthday lunch, she ordered up some strippers desserts


bread pudding on the first plate, and then key lime, po de creme, and a chocolate tart on the other plate… ‘nuf said

there were five chicas at lunch, and we each enjoyed a couple bites of each dessert, which put us in the mood filled us up

sharona recently had foot surgery, so we were excited she was feeling up to having lunch, and was taking it all in stride (or crutch?)

then i went bed hopping shopping


did you know vera wang has a line of beds??

i wasn’t impressed (TWSS)…

nikki had to study, so with the bed purchased, we scooped up JR…

let the threesome begin!

we headed for a hotel room wine country

(even in the winter, the 15 minute drive is pretty)

we headed for apolloni… a local winery where we are members. we had shipments to pick up, and they just happened to be having a chocolate/wine pairing event. i mean, what are you gonna do? just grab your wine and leave? i dont think so…


i love the smaller local wineries b/c most of the time when you show up, the winemaker/owners themselves are there, like alfredo apolloni


and then, because we were feelin frisky in the neighborhood, we popped into purple cow too.

again, small local winery (you actually taste in the family’s living room) and gallo, the winemaker, was there to service entertain us

and thennnnnn… b/c we were wasted had a bit to drink, we thought one more position stop was in order…

sake one is the world’s only American-owned-and-operated sakéry and one of my favoritest places in the portland area!!

they too were having a dessert/booze pairing event



and we were so excited to see the place was packed!

i have learned everything i know about sake from the people at sake one, and if you are in the portland area, even if you aren’t sure whether you like sake, i would highly recommend you stop at sake one. there’s something so special about this place! or heck, if you know you do like sake, order some online… their flavored sake (coconut lemongrass is my FAV) is so good!

we got toasted toasted to our day with a glass of their sparkling sake (uhhhmazing!!)


and capped off the threesome day with a quick trip through…

WHA!?!? SERIOUSLY!?! (yes, the sign says what you think it does)

ok, we didn’t really go there… what kind of girl do you think i am!??!

but that place cracks me up every time i drive by it…

HAPPY VALENTINES DAY!

back to liiiife, back to reality

anyone remember that song!??!

we all survived the drama of the past couple weeks, and are getting back into the swing of things at home.

i dumped over 200 photos off the camera (don’t worry i’m not in turn dumping ALL of them on you)… so i figured a post of updates at random is in order:

RANDOM outdoor fun in cle elum, washington





grandpa denny’s pups

ray (known as “all the way ray” given that he’s rockin 3 legs)


zoey

and belle, she was grandpa denny’s favorite pup… she went everywhere with him…

she’s SO cute… i wanted to bring her home with us so bad…

salads



anne’s hilarious/adorable nephew david requested a photo shoot





a kiwi’s first trip to the states… first pup snuggle, first snowmobile, first snow, first family memorial




(above is proof that no matter what country you’re from… the women will bitch at you if you mess up their photo)

our cute doggies





and… shout outs for denny

the day denny passed away, anne and i enjoyed a tanqueray and tonic in his honor…

his memorial was in cle elum, washington… a place quite different from portland… many a 3/4 ton pickup truck etc.





(i learned that the huge stump at the entrance of denny’s property was actually on his old piece of land… he thought it was so neat that he had his guys haul it over when he bought this new property)

it’s been a crazy couple weeks, and while it felt odd to not be posting anything on a regular basis, i felt like i needed to devote time and energy elsewhere for a while.

but now we’re all getting back to reality, and i’m looking forward to getting back into a normal routine… which included getting back to the gym this morning!

and on that note, i must get to sleep so i can get my morning sweat on again tomorrow.

i leave you with this lil gem….

there are popular bumper stickers here that say…

KEEP PORTLAND WEIRD…

i’m not sure if it’s good or bad, but i’ve never had to stop and think about what that bumper sticker means…

see you tomorrow!!

you saved my marriage!!

a lot of people don’t know that i moonlight as a superhero to marriages on the brink of disaster! last night, duty called!! my good friends nikki and jr have what i lovingly refer to as a “shit show” going on in their lives right now! jr just took on major responsibility at work, nikki is taking an incredibly stressful class, AND they are remodeling their kitchen!
no, i mean a SERIOUS remodel…

yesterday after talking to both parties about the fact that they had to put cabinets together so the contractor could install them, but they had just brought the cabinets home the night before, and if they aren’t done the contractor will fall behind schedule, and then, basically, the world ends… i realized that the bottom line is, they are both too stressed out to think rationally!

SO i told jr if he took me to see farley after work we would help him construct the cabinets.

i got to see my son for the first time since friday! he was doing pretty well, but i’m not gonna lie, the 12 staples down his back were a little hard to see.

(just a small photo… didn’t want to gross anyone out!)

and we went to work on the cabinets… apparently when you’re 6’10″… you work better lying down???

and a sample of the finished product…

this morning i was greeted at work by a beaming and more relaxed nikki, and a “thank you haiku” in which she expressed her gratitude, complimented my cabinet constructing skills AND informed me we saved her marriage. pretty good for one little haiku!

tonight there was less drama, and fewer heroics. however, we did have a pretty bomb ass dinner, so i figured i would share it with you!

we are french dip fans at this house… but i am less and less interested in any kind of red meat
so i haven’t had french dip for a while, but i have been craving it… DILEMMA!!

then it came to me… turkey dips??

so at the grocery store over the weekend anne helped me pick out an uncooked turkey breast (i wanted nothing to do with already cooked turkey, and especially not turkey “lunch meat”), but the only turkey breasts available were big hunks of skin on turkey breast.

ok, i realize i’m 29 and should be over it, but i’m not gonna lie, any skin on meat immediately activates my gag reflex upon me laying a hand on it, so a compromise was in order! as we’re standing over the turkey section in the grocery store i said, “OK, you skin it, i’ll do the rest”

right! DRAMA!

she agreed… so this morning before work, anne removed all the skin from the turkey breast, then we put that in the crock pot with the following additional ingredients:

– 1 jar peperoncini rings (peppercinis, banana peppers, whatev!!!)
– 1 packet dry italian dressing
– 2 packets dry au jus (we use lawry’s)
– we eyeball the water but basically until it comes about halfway up the slab of meat… less water obviously means stronger au jus, more water, weaker au jus… very scientific!!

we set the cock pot on low and headed out the door

on our way home form work the teen called and said the delicious smell coming from the crock pot was making it impossible for him to study for his finals. i have NO idea where he gets his dramatic side….???? wha? don’t look at me!!

when we walked in the door and lifted the lid…

the whole house smelled like french dip… it was intoxicating to some of us.

anne sliced up the turkey breast and put the slices back into the crock pot with the au jus and banana peppers.

jack tried to get someone to explain to him why we gave him a home haircut that resulted in a mullet…

while i made some salads

we toasted some whole wheat rolls, put a little horseradish on them, and served it with the salad and a toddler size serving of straight mashed potatoes

these little dippers are SO FREAKING GOOD!! i loved having the banana pepper rings in there so i can eat them on top of the sandwich.

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OH pardon me… i was wiping my drool off the keyboard!!

sometimes i forget how easy the crock pot can make my life… toss the goods into the crock in the morning, and when you get home… dinner is ready!?!?

do you use the crock pot? what’s your favorite crock pot recipe??

not built for speed

some people…

are not built for speed!

yesterday morning porter and i set out for a walk through gabriel park

i’d like to be able to say it was a nice bit of exercise, but with this person on board…

i’d say it’s more of a… meander!?!? it was still a good walk though, and we got home just in time to meet the plumber, who was a jerk and told us we needed all new pipes and good luck asking our home warranty to cover it.
ok then.. nice having you… BYE!

luckily my college friend ash came by shortly after that with her cute Cute CUTE daughter london!

london proceeded, at 18 months old, to operate my iPhone…

i mean, she was actually working the iPhone… london could unlock the phone, then she would open an application. ashlee would say, “close it” and london knew the button to hit to close the application she had open. then ashlee says, “where are the photos” and london scrolls over, and hits the icon for my photos! HILARIOUS!

seeing ash always makes me happy… and london is SO cute!! she pretty much has the blondest hair i’ve ever seen!

after they left anne and i made our way cleeeeeeear to the other side of portland to meet JR and Nikki at a local store to check out some flooring and tile for home projects.

JR was up to his usual antics…

we just looked around, no decisions were made. i do kind of think these bubble tiles would be fun for a backsplash though…


we also had to go to home depot and the grocery store, so we stopped by the house to scoop up fuzzy… home depot is good for socialization for the pup (he’s always a big hit!)

porter was super excited to ride in the car…

we cruised through uwajimaya (if you live in portland and don’t shop here, knock it off! go check it out!)

we decided to throw together an udon dinner

it was simple, but SO good

*udon noodles
*broccoli
*bean sprouts
*celery
*rock shrimp (uwajimaya has such good fresh seafood)
*sauce was really basic… miso paste mixed with a little water, tamari, garlic

we capped off the night with a movie and a little bottle of sparkling sake we also snagged at uwajimaya

if you live around here and haven’t yet discovered sake… knock it off!
make the trip to sake one in forest grove. they are SO nice, knowledgeable, and you’ll be surprised how good sake can be!

i’ll leave you with a little apology… for my craptastic photos as of late. as you may recall, my sister dumped an entire pomtini all over my little camera, and i’m still a little shy when it comes to hauling my bigger but superior camera around with me. after seeing the above display though, i promise to cut it out with the iPhone photos (at least for the most part)!!