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March 27, 2011

Life Uploaded: March 20-27


{Sunday, 3/21} Diet Coke, why can't I quit you?  I had given up diet coke for over a year but I am definitely back on the bandwagon, drinking at least one a day otherwise I get the shakes (kidding). 

  
{Monday, 3/21} I know I am late to the game, but I bought Adele's new album "21" on Monday and it has been playing nonstop.  So fantastic!  My favorite song "Set Fire to the Rain" (thanks Jen!), but the whole album is one amazing song after another.


{Tuesday, 3/22} My best friend.


{Wednesday, 3/23} I have a black thumb, I have discussed this on the blog numerous times.  Well, ladies and gentlemen, I would like to present to you the ONLY PLANT THAT HAS NEVER DIED IN MY CARE.  This plant is passed down to everybody who works in my office, and when I initially got it had TWO LEAVES! Look at it now!  I am so tempted to ask if I can bring it home with me when I leave. 
 

{Thursday, 3/24} PW's chicken spaghetti in the oven. Yum.


 {Friday, 3/25} Beautiful spring night, a view from our backyard.  


  {Friday, 3/25} A desperate attempt to not turn on the air conditioner.


{Saturday, 3/26} A clean house, a rare occurrence these days!


{Sunday, 3/27} After our weekly raquetball game, everybody in our house is apparently tired (and watching college basketball. Go VCU!).

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March 20, 2011

Life Uploaded: The Inaugural Edition

One of my favorite features about my new Droid is the camera phone.  I really like taking pictures, but I rarely have my SLR on hand.  My old blackberry took terrible pictures so I  never used it, but now I feel like I can capture all these little moments.

I decided to start a new feature on my block called "Life Uploaded" where I share some of the pictures from my camera phone.  Here is the inaugural edition.

(Photos taken using the application FxCamera)



{Saturday 3/12}  Don't be fooled, typically its Toby taking up all the room in the  bowl and Kadira has to nudge her way in. 


{Also Saturday 3/12} We haven't had sushi in literally over a year (unless you count sushi at Whole Foods, which I don't). Sadly, this sushi was a little disappointing, and we had to battle the St. Patty's Day crowd on Greenville to get it, which was an adventure in and of itself.



{Monday 3/13} View of downtown Dallas


{Tuesday 3/14} Tried to get a picture with Toby and sadly, this was the best one. 


{Thursday 3/17} Bracket making, which comprised of a "reasonable bracket" and a "dream bracket."  Both are currently bombing.  


{Friday 3/18} I wore out my old black ankle boots so baldly that last week the heel literally broke off them.  I was forced to buy another pair and I am pleasantly surprised with the purchase. 


{Saturday 3/19} My earring situation was getting a bit out of control so I bought this black earring harp to help organize. So far, I am in love.  You can find it HERE

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March 17, 2011

Book 5: Such a Pretty Fat by Jen Lancaster and Book 6: Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin


Book numero five was "Such a Pretty Fat" by Jen Lancaster.  I adored "Bitter is the New Black" (review HERE), so I was excited to read my second Lancaster memoir.  And by read, I mean listen to via audible.  The book was enjoyable.  I didn't like it as much as "Bitter is the New Black" - but that's because "Bitter" spoke to me during The Lost Year.  "Pretty Fat" is her losing weight memoir, and its hilarious.  A particular passage that spoke to me was when she was on the treadmill and found herself in an unspoken feud with the skinny blond bitch next to her.  As in, she would not get off the treadmill before her because she thought the blond girl thought she was better then her because she was skinny. Hilarious, and something I do all the time because I am a ragingly competitive.

But what I like the most about Lancaster's books is her ability to write about everyday life and make it still funny, interesting, and compelling.  I think that is something bloggers struggle with on a daily basis- what to blog about?  I think that if you are truly a talented writer, you can write about boring, every day things and make them compelling.  That is what Lancaster does.  Her whole book is about going to the gym, and I enjoyed it!

Here is her promotional book video, its pretty funny.



I also reread "Something Borrowed," you know, because I AM SO FREAKING EXCITED ABOUT THE MOVIE.  If I didn't already emphasize that point enough.

Make sure to friend me on Goodreads! My user name is DuolyNoted


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March 13, 2011

The Big 2-7

I didn't have high expectations for my 27th birthday, for multiple reasons. First, 27 isn't really a celebratory number. Second, because for the first time in my life I had to work on my birthday. I know, waaaaahhhh wahhhhhh, but the beauty of a March 11th birthday is it has always fallen during Spring Break.

The day, itself, didn't start out that well. I work up in the morning and without thinking took my multi-vitamin on an empty stomach. I soon found myself leaning over the toilet bowl puking my guts out. Then, I turned on the news and there was all that terrible devestation in Japan and I thought to myself,"My 27th year has started out with a massive earthquake and me puking. This is fairly ominous."

Dan was insistent that we carpool, and while pulling out of the garage he stopped the car and asked me to run back inside and grab something. I sighed (heavily, to emphasize my annoyance) and ran in and out of the house. It wasn't until I got to work that I realized I had left my blackberry at home. This isn't an uncommon occurrence, so I sent out my obligatory email to those I talk to on a semi-frequent basis and told everybody if they needed me to call my work phone.

About a half hour later my work phone rings - its Dan, on the way home from the gym. He normally gets ready there and heads into work but he said that he forgot his work shoes at home so he has to go home anyways. Would I like him to pick up my phone and drop it by my office? Yes please!

Upon his arrival and I head down to the parking lot to grab my phone. I actually wasn't expecting to do anything that night because Fridays are typically my "crash the second I get home" day, and I figured we would go out to dinner or something on Saturday.  As I approach the vehicle he holds my phone out the window - but it wasn't my blackberry - it was a new Droid, already loaded with all my contacts! Pretty sneaky huh? He stole my phone when I ran back inside the house that morning and got it all hooked up. I was very impressed.

After work, he picked me up and we went to run some errands. Shortly thereafter he pretended like he left his wallet at his office so we would have to go back to uptown. I wasn't buying it. Eventually he confessed that actually, he got reservations for us at The Common Table.  However, what he didn't tell me was when we got there we would be greeted by my friends! I was shocked, and so surprised.

So I thought that was the end of the surprises, but there was one more!  See, that Wednesday I told Dan all I wanted for my birthday were Sprinkles red velvet cupcakes. However, at this point in the evening I wasn't even thinking about Sprinkles cupcakes, until Dan sneaked out and brought to the table a whole dozen! Here's what is left:


I don't even want to tell you how many of those empty spaces are due to me.  So overall, it was a surprisingly fantastic birthday.  Not just because I have the best husband on the face of the planet, but also because I was spoiled by all my friends and family.

Oh, and one more thing, check out what I got in my fortune at lunch:


Pretty crazy, huh?  I think the 27th year is going to turn out pretty awesome after all. 

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March 9, 2011

Recipe 5: Chipotle Marinated Pork Chops with Chimichurri Sauce


This recipe tastes like an explosion of flavor in your mouth. Also, it only has 311 calories per chop (with 1/4 cup sauce). Not too shabby for pork, eh?

Adapted form myrecipes 

INGREDIENTS
(1) 6 center cut pork chops
(2) 1 cup chicken broth
(3) 1 drained can of chipotle chilies in adobe sauce
(4) 3/4 cup parsley leaves, chopped
(5) 2 tbs. EVOO
(6) 2 tbs. vinegar
(7) 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
(8) salt and pepper to taste
(9) 4 garlic cloves
(10) 1/2 cup carrots, chopped
(11) 1/2 cup minced onion

DIRECTIONS
1. Combine 3/4 cup chicken broth and chipotle chilies in blender and process until smooth.  Cover the mixture all over pork chips and let marinate in refrigerator for two hours.

2. To make Chimichurri sauce, combine 1/4 cup chicken broth and ingredients (4)-(9) in a blender until smooth.  Place mixture in bowl and add carrots and onions.  Mix. 

3. Take chops out of marinade and grill, normally 5 minutes on each side. Serve with Chimichurri sauce

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March 7, 2011

Humble Pie TASTES SO GOOD

"I am not a crazy person. I did not imagine that somebody from your office called me and told me that there was a cancellation."

I glare at the nurse with my hands on my hips. The entire waiting room is starring out our confrontation because, well, I started yelling.  Also because our "discussion" is way more interesting then the articles in a three month old subscription of "Woman's Health."

Let me start at the beginning.

Last week things were a bit, manic, shall we say. I was living and breathing by my day planner, my head was in such a whirl I could not remember anything. One day, I forgot to check my planner, and that is how I spaced my doctor's appointment. The appointment with a new doctor that was very difficult to get into that I had scheduled for three months. Upon realizing my mistake, I called and profusely apologized and asked if I could reschedule. The office was very apologetic, but they were booked until May. I politely declined and told them I would just call my old doctor (60 minutes away) because all my prescriptions were running out and I needed to get in immediately.

I called my old doctor and told them I needed to get in as soon as possible. They scheduled me for the 25th. I hang up the phone and not two minutes later did they call me back.

"Melissa?"
"Yes?"
"We just had a cancellation tomorrow at 10:30. Can you come in then?"
"Yes! Sounds great."

I was reluctant because I was so busy and really couldn't spare taking half the day off work, but I really needed to see the doctor so I was going to make it work.

The next morning I get up early and headed to my car.

It didn't start.

My battery was dead. I try to jump it. It doesn't work. I call Dan, who was at work, and made him come and pick me up. I drop him back off at work and race to my appointment. Of course, they have changed locations. I am late but I refuse to miss this appointment, mostly because I cannot afford to take any more time off work. I call for directions and stumble into the office miraculously only 15 minutes late. I approach the counter.

"Melissa LastName. I have a 10:45 appointment."

The nurse looks at the computer and furrows her brow.  "Ma'm, we have you down for an appointment on the 25th, not today."

Stay calm.

"Yes, that was my original appointment date. But then somebody from you office called to tell me that there was a cancellation for this morning."

"I'm sorry. They didn't write that down."

"Well, I am here, and I took half the day off work...so..."

"Well the doctor can't see you. She's booked for the day."

At this point I am pissed. Are you serious? This is when my voice begins to raise.

"I just drove an hour to get here. I am not a crazy person. I did not imagine that somebody from your office called me and told me that there was a cancellation."

"Well they didn't write it down and the doctor is already an hour behind."

"I do not have time to drive all the way back up here."

"Well I don't know what to tell you."

"You can tell me you will fit me in."

"Sorry, that is not possible."

At this point I start to feel a stinging behind my eyes. I never cry in public, but I know all too well that the stress of everything is starting to take its toll. Instead of giving this evil nurse the satisfaction of seeing my tears, I walk out the door in a big huff, slamming it hard behind me.

"I am so getting that bitch fired." I mutter under my breath as I storm to my car.

Its not until I get halfway back to Dallas that a terrifying realization hits me. Could it be? No. Could that call with the cancellation been from the OTHER doctor's office?

I call. It was. I am mortified. Mostly because that I have now missed two doctors appointments in 48 hours. Also because I was kind of a bitch to that evil nurse. But I still maintain that when somebody comes in swearing that you called them with a cancellation you fit them in.  Seriously, who would make that up? 

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March 1, 2011

C'est la vie

I realized today that it has been quite awhile since I have posted something, well, real. Instead I have littered this blog with recipes, book reviews, and decor inspiration. Which is all grand in doses, but that is never what I wanted this blog to be about entirely.  So, what's new?

Well, as promised, I cut my bangs like Ginnifer Goodwin in Something Borrowed: 


I love them, but my they are already getting a bit too long and I fear I might have to trim them myself because I am more of a "haircut ever four months" girl then every six weeks. Let's all pray that we don't have a repeat of the incident from junior high where my bangs ended up less then one inch long and I cried and refused to go school for three days.


After 27 years of threatening to do it, my parents are finally moving from my small hometown in Idaho to the thriving "big city" of Boise.  For those of you who have followed this blog for awhile, you know how much I want to move "back" to Boise, so having my parents finally moving there only makes me more homesick.  While Dallas is certainly growing on me, it just doesn't feel like home, and I often feel really lonely and very frustrated that I am here and not where I want to be.  It is a hard decision though, because Dallas just has so many more opportunities then Boise does.  I keep hinting to Dan that we should start seriously talking about moving back, but I fear it wont be for a couple more years.  Le sigh. 


Speaking of Dallas, I have exactly 31 days to decide whether to register for the Texas Bar exam.  My current job was only a term position, and it ends in August.  I have begun the process of sending out resumes and applying, but I was really holding out hope for a federal job (i.e. I wouldn't have to take the Texas bar exam).  But with budget cuts and the fact that USA Jobs currently has ZERO postings for attorneys in Dallas, I think I might have to really consider taking the bar here to make myself more marketable.  I really don't want to do.  I already work a lot, and the thought of cramming bar studying on top of that makes me feel a little overwhelmed, but I don't want to leave any stone unturned in the job search.  So unless I get a fabulous job offer in 30 days...it sounds like another bar exam is going to be in my future.  Ugh.


This little guy decided to scare the crap out of us this weekend and get beyond sick, and then manage to hurt his knee so bad that we had to take him to the vet.  To add insult to injury, this is the THIRD visit to the vet we have had in, like, six weeks.  So I was beginning to get concerned that they were going to report us to some kind of doggie protective services.  They didn't, thank goodness, and I am happy to report that Toby seems to be doing better and we are optimistic that surgery isn't in this little guy's near future.  That being said, I didn't sleep a wink this weekend because he kept getting sick and I just felt so terrible for him.  I am more resolute then ever that I am not ready for kids.


Speaking of not having kids, I have officially decided that I want an IUD.  I called a doctor about three months ago to arrange a consult of sorts and then managed to FORGET ABOUT THE APPOINTMENT.  Actually, I just mixed up the days, but when I called them today to explain the mishap they couldn't get me another appointment until MAY and I am SO MAD AT MYSELF.  Mostly because I NEVER forget things like this.  I am always so organized.  I think (I know) its because recently I have just felt extremely overwhelmed and burnt out.  My tank is empty and I need a vacation - and I'm not talking "staycation" - I am talking "plant my butt on the beach and drink fruity drinks with umbrellas in them" vacation.  Somewhere far, far away from Texas. 

Until then, here's some music that is helping me get through my days:

Zach Brown Band "Colder Weather"
Kenny Chesney "Somewhere With You"
Jason Aldean and Kelly Clarkson "Don't You Wanna Stay"

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