Can I blame it on the fact that I have been in town for exactly one weekend the past month? Seriously, I have been a traveling fool and have lots of pictures to show for it. I promise that I will get some up for all you dedicated readers (all 3 of you...) soon! ;)
My friend Krista is a photographer in her spare time and she wanted to try out her new tripod on Friday evening. So a group of us went downtown with her to "model" and goof off. Click here to see her cool pictures! For all you wondering, that is our friend Daniel minus his shirt. :) I'll post some of my pictures later, but they're not quite the same caliber as Krista's.
As I was posting the other night, I heard a car door slam outside. That's the usual tip-off for a weenie dog barking frenzy in my house. Instead I hear a very muffled "woof." A few seconds later I hear another "woof." I wander into my bedroom and see this lump under the comforter, which can only be my dog. I guess it was too warm and cozy under the blankets to actually emerge and bark like crazy so the next best thing was to do a few half-hearted woofs from the depths of the blankets. Gee - I feel so safe. Nice work, guard dog!
My co-worker, Kelly, knows of my sugar affinity. She went to a new store on South Congress called Big Top Candy Shop and bought me two very fun candies. We have the "Instant Irish Accent" candy (and we all know how I love a good accent!) and Gnome gum. I was rolling. Mostly because the gum says "'tis me favorite" on the front and the candy says "Fresh on the tongue like the mist off the Cliffs of Moher." C'mon kids, that is darn funny. Or maybe I just have a twisted sense of humor!
I'm posting a few choice pictures from my NY trip. It was sunny and cool - great weather for walking around the city. I was speaking at an anti-counterfeiting conference, but still managed to get out for a little sightseeing and a Broadway show. If you get the chance to see "Wicked," I highly recommend it! It was a FANTASTIC showwith terrific singing, incredible sets and beautiful costumes. NY is a fantastic city - it truly never sleeps. There were so many interesting people to watch and I found New Yorkers to be very friendly. Especially when I asked this one guy where 5th Street was. He was like, "You mean 5th Ave.?" I think in that moment it helped to be a cute girl who could just smile and say, "Yes, of course! I'm not from here." Oops! I did not get a hot dog from a street cart, sadly, but I did get a soft pretzel. I also noticed that they sell black & white cookies in Starbucks there (Starbucks branded, too.) I must make a mental note to tell Starbucks that we Texans would enjoy us some black & white cookies. I'll be sure to use that exact phraseology so I can sound very educated and convincing. ;) I also recommend The Peking Duck House in Chinatown. Their pork and beans with noodles (homemade noodles, may I add) was delish! The Pig n' Whistle has some good fish & chips and Guinness on tap to wash it down. If you go to The Lobster Pot, I recommend the cioppino. It's served over linguine and comes with shrimp, scallops, cod and a big lobster claw. To die for! I swear I did other things besides shop and eat, but they really aren't that interesting to people not in the trademark legal field, so I won't bore you. While in New York, I had many opportunities to quote the movie "elf," since that's where it was filmed. Like we passed a store that said "Peep Show" and I said, "If you see a store that says 'Peep Show,' that doesn't mean they're letting you look at presents before Christmas." Unfortunately, none of my companions got it. C'mon peeps - let's brush up on our important movie lines! Here are a sampling of the pictures I took. Enjoy!
I'm back from The Big Apple and had a fabulous time. I will definitely post pictures soon. Thought I would share a fun fact for everyone...did you know that there is no sales tax charged on any clothing purchases under $110? How great is that? So, even though it's still in the 90s here, I HAD to take advantage of the J. Crew cashmere sweaters on sale. :) This is the one I bought:
I promise it's a prettier brown in person. Sort of heathered with darker and lighter threads.
Story #1: While trying to take a nap today, Quincy and I kept hearing this buzzing, wing-fluttering noise by my bedroom window. I have had some moths and flies get caught between my honeycomb shade and the window before, so no big deal. Except today. I take a peek and what do I see? A big ol' wasp stuck in my bedroom window - inside my room. Awesome. I quickly get myself and my dog out of the room and call my parents to ask how you kill a wasp. My mom thinks this is hilarious and tells me to swat it with a flyswatter. Uh, no! Wasps can sting and my aim is not great - I do not need a pissed off wasp chasing after me. So my dad tells me to get some bug spray but make sure it is not the outside wasp spray. It will say suitable for indoor use on the can. Clearly my parents doubt my ability to read or make a rational judgment of appropriate bug spray at this point. I make a Super Targ run and, upon my return, head upstairs armed with my flyswatter and Raid. I totally sucker punched the wasp with a shot of Raid and then soaked it once it was stunned. Then I beat the crap out of it with the flyswatter. All in a day's work, I guess. At least I can sleep soundly tonight.
Story #2: I got two mosquito bites whilst (great British word, eh?) sitting outside at the Vietnamese restaurant at lunch today. My question is - when the heck is Fall getting here so all the mosquitoes (is it "s" or "es" on the end of that one?) will die off?
Oh, it's a glorious time of year. That's right - pumpkin everything is out in stores and restaurants. Starbucks is now serving the delicious pumpkin spice latte (soy, no whip), Einstein Bros. is busting out the pumpkin bagels, IHOP is serving pumpkin pancakes and (fanfare, please!) Target has debuted their autumnmix. Yes folks, candy corn and mallow pumpkin goodness for all to enjoy. I'm betting that Mimi's Cafe has some sort of pumpkin muffin as their seasonal treat. Must make sure to check that out this weekend! Dee-lish!
For the chefs out there, try these Pumpkin Praline Custards from Cooking Light. They're so good, my dog jumped up on my coffee table and scarfed one last year - he NEVER does that!
Mom and Dad came to Austin for Labor Day weekend and we had a blast! They tried Ethiopian food for the first time and they actually liked it. There was even talk of them going to the Ethiopian restaurant in Phoenix. We did a little shopping in Wimberley and hit the Steak N Shake at Slaughter and I-35 on the way down there. For those of you non-Midwesterners, Steak N Shake is pretty great - steak burgers, skinny fries and YUMMY milkshakes (of course, I can't have any, so I got a homemade vanilla Coke instead). :9 I bought some very essential Christmas decorations. Don't worry - I'm sure they will make their debut in a future post. We also had County Line, Guero's (no Luke Wilson sightings, unfortunately), kolaches and pumpkin spice lattes from Starbucks. It was a food-filled trip! Mom was having such a good time that she decided to stay until Thursday. I took a half day off on that Thursday and we hit the Round Rock outlets for some shopping. I found a cute sweater on sale at Ann Taylor. Mom found a cute winter white quilted coat and long sleeve tee at Eddie Bauer - perfect for her trip to Yellowstone later this month! Of course, I am including a couple of pictures with this post so y'all can see my fam.
Why is it that I start freaking out about the cleanliness of my house when my parents are coming to visit? I think there is something ingrained in us as children (probably only female children) that kicks in, as if our mothers are going to walk in with a white glove and do a spot check to see if our house is "clean enough." Of course, my parents have reassured me that they don't care how clean or dirty my house is. But if you happen to try and call me on Thursday night, I might not be able to hear you over the vacuum cleaner.
So, in case you didn't know, I LOVE Christmas! And what better way to celebrate my almost-half birthday than with a Christmas themed unbirthday party? I made sugar cookies with sprinkles and my friends Michele and Rick made chicken (closest thing to roast beast we could find), stuffing and mashed potatoes. I brought the cranberry sauce, too. Then we watched elf, Nightmare Before Christmas and Pee Wee's Playhouse Christmas Special. We were all tired from a hard week at work (Quincy included), but we had a good time. I forgot to mention...we also had Fun Dip, Reese's Pieces, Gobstoppers and Sour Patch Kids. Michele's mom also found these toothbrush holders for us. They're white ceramic - mine has a poinsettia on it and Michele's has holly. They're quite lovely and really got us into the Christmas spirit. I'm including a couple of photos so you can join in the holiday mood.
My sister is in Argentina until August 21. I never realized how much I send her emails or texts during the day about random stuff (that only we would think was funny) until she's out of the country and I can't text her or talk to her! Jennus - I hope you are having a rocking time. I sent her a text message yesterday of my dog making the most pathetic face I could muster (it involved withholding his toy). Hurry home, Jenni. Safe travels!
So my friend Tracy had a theme birthday party this weekend. It was a space theme, but space as seen in the 50's and 60's (a la Jetsons and Barbarella). Needless to say, I had a fantastic time getting dressed up. I think I ended up looking a bit like a futuristic bounty hunter. My ray gun and silver thigh-highs were a big hit. Many thanks to A Cut Above Costumes in Round Rock for my fabulous outfit. I couldn't have done it without you. And, of course, I am attaching pictures because I know you're all DYING to see what we looked like!
1. I love candy (nerds ropes, dark chocolate, gummi bears, swedish fish = favorites). 2. I love weenie dogs and, most especially, my dog. 3. I'm pretty laid back, which is why I live in Austin. :) 4. I think flip-flops should be considered work-appropriate footwear. 5. I'm an avid reader. 6. I want to travel the world. So far I've been to Ireland, Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Mexico. 7. I'm a natural redhead. (Sometimes I have the temper to go with it.) 8. Yes, I am single. And totally willing to be set up if you know any cute, nice guys! 9. I love to laugh! 10. I have weird food allergies. I'm allergic to dairy, cilantro, avocados, melon, uncooked tomatoes and apples. But don't worry - I can still function normally and eat out!
Many thanks to the Schish for this brilliant idea!
So, I have a pet peeve. It's when I'm the only one in the ladies' room and someone comes in and goes into the stall right next to me! Hello? You have 5 other stalls to choose from, why do you need to be in a stall that is thisclose to me? I understand there are times where having a person in the stall next to you is necessary, like at a sporting event or after a movie lets out. However, during the down times when no one else is in the place, can you please leave at least one stall between us? That way it gives the semblance of a little privacy in a public restroom. Ladies, let's reinstate the rule of the courtesy stall!
I read the book Buenos Aires Broken Hearts Club while on vacation and it made me miss Argentina. I longed to be back there, to be in the hustle and bustle of the city, to spend hours chatting with friends over mate or lazy dinners and, maybe, to flirt a bit with the cute Argentine men. My sister is headed there in a couple of weeks and to say I'm jealous is an understatement. I love Buenos Aires. I love pretty much everyone I've met from Argentina. I want to go back and practice my Castellano. I want to eat so many alfajores that it makes me sick. I've been saving my frequent flier miles for a big trip. I'd like to go to Europe, but I've been considering Argentina because of the horrid exchange rate. I think I left a little piece of my heart there. Maybe I'll go again so I can get it back.