Sunday, February 28, 2010

Coming Up For Air

Ever feel like you've just been buried in a work avalanche? Its sort of been that way for me in these last few weeks of February. I just know it has everything to do with the torrential snows we got in the beginning of the month (Curse you, snow!), but I feel like I'm just now beginning to dig out (literally and figuratively).

So to apologize for my absence, here is a list of randomness for your enjoyment:

(1) I have discovered a new party-conversation standard: American Idol. You can be at the nicest soiree in town, with everyone dressed to the nines in black tie regalia and browsing some silent auction full of overpriced china dishes. And I'm getting progressively better at the inane party chatter lately: "Oh my, Georgeanna, your zebra print dress is exquisite. Have you seen the auction items yet? Oh they are lovely, aren't they? And for such a good cause..."

But that's all boring. The real fun is in figuring out how to swing the conversation back to American Idol. And you always can. Because believe it or not, every single person at that swanky event is totally going home and watching it on TiVo. Its usually the most spirited conversation of the night. "Can you believe Seventies Guy was kicked off? I know! Crazy, right?" So that's been an enjoyable bit of entertainment for me lately.

(2) I am boycotting the grocery store, and have been for at least the past week and a half. See, we went to the grocery about 10 times in a row in the week we were snowed in (partly just to "see" if Steven's 4 wheel drive "worked," which obviously it did, but also because we kept forgetting to buy stuff). So I tried to clean out the fridge and pantry by eating everything we'd bought in those trips. The only problem? Because of aforementioned work avalanche, I haven't wanted to cook AT ALL in the last two weeks. The sad result of this is that I finally just cleaned out the fridge, froze a bunch of stuff, and started having cereal every night for dinner. Or we went to McDonalds. My health is probably suffering from this.

(3) I am going to the grocery store today. Begrudgingly.

(4) Baseball watching in our home has begun. But its February, I hear you all saying, and while you are correct, let me inform you of the actual baseball schedule in Casa de Steele. Pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training = We start watching as much baseball coverage as we can find. Online, MLB TV, whatever we can find. Steven says its shaping up to be a good year for the Twins. (He says this every year. I find his blissfully optimistic devotion very cute.)

(5) I finished the latest edition of the Huff Family Book Club: Watership Down, by Richard Adams. It was a Chris Huff pick, which he described as "a story about anthropomorphic rabbits." I think that just about sums it up.

(6) (Actually, it was quite engaging and I now feel a smidgeon more empathy for the horrid little beasts that eat my garden every year. But that doesn't mean I won't put up rabbit fencing. Just you watch.)

(7) My house is a trash pit and desperately needs a springtime scrubbing. I am resisting, because if there is still snow on the ground, then it cannot truly be time for "spring cleaning" yet. I figure I will be able to get away with this for at least another week before all the dirty clothes get up and walk around on their own, assemble a coup-de-etat and overthrow my laundry dictatorship. If that means they'll wash themselves, I'd gladly be overthrown. Power to the people.

(8) I miss Westlaw. The firm uses FastCase. It is so totally not the same.

(9) I probably just earned massive nerd points for random thought #8.

(10) I need new work clothes. I think folks at my job are starting to notice that I really only have three suits. Three suits times five days a week, divided by a laundry strike..... well, you get the idea.

(11) Note that my solution to the laundry strike is not actually doing the laundry, but just shopping for new clothes. A sad state of affairs, indeed. I consider it progress that I have moved the laundry piles physically closer to the washing machine -- they are no longer upstairs taking over the bedroom, they are now in the front foyer for all my neighbors to see. (I threw the laundry down the stairs yesterday. It was as far as I got, then I lost energy and gave up.)

(12) Anybody want to come over and do my grocery shopping and laundry, whilst I sit here on my bum and whine about work? I am so pleasant right now! Gee whiz! :)

P.S. -- So who do we like on American Idol this year? I'm sort of rooting for the young dark haired girl with the Portuguese grandma. But I also like the hispanic guy with the square glasses who did the Paula Abdul cover. (See? Now we've come full circle.)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Enough With The Snow Already...

Its official. We have just survived (Survived? Does that mean its over yet?) the snowiest winter on record in the Nation's Capital.

Aaaand I'm officially tired of snow.* I won't even post any more snow pictures for you, because seriously, it still looks exactly the same outside. Which is to say, everything is cold and white.

So I'll show you something rather colorful instead: I made a smoothie.


It was the brainchild of necessity - all the fruit in our house was starting to go bad.


And by a perfect set of circumstances, I had some vanilla yogurt in the fridge.


Result? Extreme deliciousness.


Blackberry-Banana Smoothie:
(Makes 1.5 servings. Or just one serving if you have a big glass.)
- Large handful of blackberries
- Two bananas, sliced into rounds
- One small vanilla yogurt (my favorite kind is Stonyfield.)
- Large handful of ice cubes

Throw it all in a food processor and pulse to your heart's content. Enjoy the Barney-The-Dinosaur color of purple that it turns out to be. Pretend you are sipping fruit smoothies on a beach somewhere, instead of snowed in at your house for the 5th day in a row.

*Although I will admit, I am BEYOND thrilled that we got Steven a 4WD vehicle back in December, after the First Snowpocalypse. And to think, I joked to him that we'd bought the car just a bit too late, presuming we'd already had the "big snow" of the season. Oh, what little I knew then.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Snowpocalypse 2010

Attention everyone: This is an Important News Alert.

"Verily, verily, It Has Snowed."


We thought we might be able to shovel the driveway ourselves, but we got one lane cut down the driveway, the exact width of our snow shovel, and we promptly gave up.


Not only is the snow tall, but it weighs a metric ton. (I will admit I was glad to have a variety of knit caps to choose from. And those boots? Soaked to the brim now.)


We saw a neighbor out plowing the street with an ATV that had a snowplow attachment on the front. I begged him to come plow our driveway, and he agreed to do it. (I'm baking him cookies later, for sure.)

Here's what the driveway looked like when it was plowed. Two more inches of snow have fallen since we took this picture, so we'll probably have to shovel it one more time before we go anywhere.


I have also discovered that its difficult to take a picture that truly portrays the scope of the snow. Its so .... white. Its hard on the camera.


I would estimate we've gotten about two feet of snow, maybe more, but we haven't officially measured it.


But I think this lamppost in our front yard is telling. Its about five feet tall, and I would say only about half of it is above the snow.


It is definitely beautiful, and we've enjoyed sitting inside sipping hot cocoa watching folks walk by in winter gear.


But I could also see how days and days of this could make you a bit stir-crazy. I'm wishing my boots weren't wet -- I'd like to walk down the street a bit and take some more pictures. But I'd also like to keep all ten toes, thank-you-very-much. So indoors I stay.


(The best part? I hear its supposed to snow AGAIN on Tuesday. God bless America.)

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Why I Won't Ever Wear Scrubs

So everyone on Facebook has been posting the picture of the "Celebrity that Other People Think You Look Like."

And it looked like such fun. I mean, people were posting such cute pictures of people like Christina Ricci, Reese Witherspoon, and I totally saw the connections. They looked like celebrities! Love that!

So I started thinking. Hey, I really want to post a pic of who I look like -- wouldn't that be fun? And so I thought. And thought. And thought.

And then I made a very sad realization. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, a realization so sad that you might not want to read any further. Go watch some cute videos of kittens or something and then come back after you've fortified your Sense Of Happy.

Ok, you're back? Well, here's the sad truth. I could only think of one time that someone has told me that I look like a celebrity. It was back in like 2002: Steven had this slightly-crazy roommate named Mike. And Mike was a fun guy, but you sort of never knew what he was going to say next.

And on this particular occasion, I think we'd all gone out to lunch somewhere. Conversation was progressing like normal, when Mike suddenly blurted out:

"You know who you look just like, Heather??" And the look in his eyes was the glint of insanity.

"Who, Mike?"

"That guy from Scrubs."

Oh. The horror. Its so awful, and yet so right on. I look like Zac Braff. And now I will prove it to you:

Do you see that? Do you see?!

Its true. I'll admit it. Zac Braff and I could be twins. Oh, the humanity. I'm going to have to wear mascara and earrings the rest of my days now. And maybe skirts too.

But never, ever, ever scrubs. It would just be too much.