Wednesday, February 28, 2007


I'm up to 1002 views of my profile on blogger.

Wow, what a big deal.

Other than that, I'm back from Paris. It was lovely, the weather was cooperative. We ate well. We managed to do things that we each wanted to do and we bought lots of chocolate.

We bought so much that I refused to go to Patrick Roger because I was sick and tired of chocolate.

What is with that?

So, while I sit here composing this entry I am nibbling on a few mini madeleines we picked up at the grand epicerie - these are matcha madeleines and they are to die for.

Fauchon has redone their Place de la Madeleine store and it has its own madeleine bar. TH loves my orange swirled chocolate ones and my mom makes a wicked vanilla madeleine, but the flavors at Fauchon were wild. Saffron, sesame, truffle along with coffee, matcha and framboise.

I'm going to have to pull out my molds and start working on my recipes again, because these are winners -- they are fast to make, hold for a while and are adaptable to a variety of flavors.

Here is a great discussion on different recipes and some variations. I have used the Williams and Sonoma recipe for years with great luck, just replace that orange blossom water with your favorite extract.

Bon Appetit!


Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Friday, February 16, 2007

I wonder if it'll get me into club class.

My Peculiar Aristocratic Title is:
Her Eminence the Very Viscountess Nazila the Blue of Lardle St Earache
Get your Peculiar Aristocratic Title

Thursday, February 15, 2007

a race a time zone, that is all I ask

Along with the race a month that we're trying to achieve. I figured this year we might try to visit all time zones and try and race in them.

So far, we have done the Pacific and Mountain (well, does AZ count?), we have Eastern coming up and I think Kansas is in the Central.

Now, J has decided that we need to do the solstice half in Anchorage in June.

Okay. Sounds good.

Except that every hotel in ANC is full to the brim. I was able to snag a gov't rate, so we should be good to go.

I'll go from SAN to ANC in the same day.

I think we're crazy and I'm not sure I'm up for Hawaii this year, but I'll find it in me somehow.


barking at a ball

The dog is barking at his squeaky. His squeaky makes a sad stick substitute and it does not cooperate and he gets cranky. The crankiness of the dog, in turn, makes me cranky. Combine that with little sleep, work issues, playing a surrogate travel agent to my parents and everything else and we're all a bit cranky. Naw, make that really cranky.

I have been following the concept of the Compact for the last few months. I like it on one level, but on another it gets my goat. However, alot of the peeps that originally participated are middle to upper class professionals so it can't be too far off from my current lifestyle and leanings.

I'm trying to sort of compact my life. Partially due to end of the year spending and paying for it now and partially because we have too much crap. I'm obviously going to not recycle my cooking oil into hair conditioner, but I'll think twice and maybe three times before I consider buying something. Its amazing what you can not buy once you start analyzing the reasons behind your need for l'object du moment.

I don't know how you can compact and do work travel. However, I am thinking about it. I will admit I'm even compacting trips for leisure. Unless a trip has a purpose - bbq, a half marathon, a wedding or a concert is a reason, for pure mileage collection, no dice.

Yes, I'm trying to figure that one out as we speak.

Thanks for listening.

I'm off to bark at the ball too.


Sunday, February 11, 2007

a race a month, that is all I ask

Sometime last Fall, I agreed to walk a half marathon. I didn't really train, but we went and we did it. It was a very cool experience. After that, my friend J and my friend G and I decided that setting goals like this are a good way to keep ourselves accountable to each other and a fun way to explore new places. We made a plan to do a half marathon in September in Philly and we'll do a few more in more exotic locales.

This morning J and I met and did a fun 5K around Greenlake. Next month, we're doing a race for St. Patrick's day, the following month, we're thinking Vancouver and I'm even going to try and convince a group of bbq loving flyertalkers that a 5K in Kansas City will allow us to each drink one more beer.

So, our goal is to go from walking, to jogging to running. We'll probably not be the fastest peeps on the trail, but we'll have the most fun getting there.


Saturday, February 10, 2007

Texture and contrast, March 2006, Seattle, WA.

What is happening?

I am very fine, thank you, just super busy.

Ernest and I did a nice bunch of walks today. Tomorrow I am sorry to say, he will not be joining me on the love 'em and leave 'em 5K, but we'll go to Greenlake earlier just to get him sort of tired. It doesn't really work. He will walk for three miles, come home, nap and then go for another three miles without even batting an eyelash.

Other than that, spring is springing here. Tulips, irises, crocus, witchhazel and forsythia are amazing to watch.

Bring it on baby.


Monday, February 05, 2007


Grumpy workers are the best workers.

Just thinking that maybe I'll stay a little more grumpy.

My office mate just left for a nicely paying position in private industry. Sorry to see him go, but honestly, he's young and needs to buy a house.

He'll do great.

I'll miss him.


Wednesday, January 31, 2007

all sorts of stuff

Bleeding heart, March 2006, Seattle, WA.

Thanks for your well wishes. Ernest is just fine after a spacey and clingy Tuesday night. He is currently getting ready for bed by jumping on his new squeaky dinosaur. He went to Mud Bay today (the place we can't even go into without the boy) and promptly made a basset line for the hard treats. We bought him a bag of soft treats instead. They are peanut butter and shaped like little gingerbread people.

How cute is that?

His breath is sweet, but he still is shy about showing us his gnashers.

Uncle Frank and Aunt Beth are working to put together a dental health kit for our boy. Maybe Uncle Frank wants to use Ernest as a after case for better gum brushing, afterall, tomorrow is the beginning of National Pet Dental Health Month. I wish Ernest had not taken it so seriously.

Stay tuned.

Great news from the state of Maryland. Looks like NKK is back in charge of things for another four years. Yeah! They got it right down both sides of the aisle.

Sad news from the state of Texas - Molly Ivins died today. Read some great things that she said here.

I usually disagree with Nancy Leson, our resident food critic. Today she dissed Rachel Ray. Tonight I made a great tortilla soup that I adapted from one of her cookbooks. I am not crazy about either woman, but I like her take on tortilla soup.

I'm off to San Diego this weekend to see my parentals and my uncle and aunt who are here from Germany. I'm not sure what we all have planned, but I have a feeling that I'll be dragging someone to the La Jolla Farmer's Market in search of some citrus.

I realize that my whole pantry is full of Trader Joe's foods. I can't imagine when that happened. Short of stuff I preserved myself, enchilada sauce, green chiles and some wierd ingredients, our staples all can be found at TJs. Yoikes. Things will change as we start growing our own and going to the market, but right now, it just works.

I even spied ibuprofen back on their shelves and TH has me hooked on their gummy vitamins. I hate taking regular vitamins and these are pretty decent and fruity as well. Now if they can only sell real butter puff pastry, aspirin, new mexico green chile and isernio's chicken italian sausage, we'll be in heaven.

Okay, I've rambled enough. I should tell you all that I have been remiss about taking pictures. I have no idea why. TH bought me the most amazing macro lens for the holidays and I have yet to really play with it. Maybe when Ernest is feeling better I'll get a close up of his teeth.

later taters,


Monday, January 29, 2007

if you could spare some

Ernest needs some good vibes.

Turns out his vole breath is caused by excessive stick chewing which has caused a nice deep pocket of ick that requires anesthesia to take xrays, clean out said pocket and while we're at it, clean the rest of his chompers.

So, tomorrow am, we'll be freaking out until he wakes up.

Cross your fingers the root isn't injured or infected. He needs his teeth.

nm and e.dd

Sunday, January 28, 2007

almost perfect

All I'm saying is that if I was either stuck on a plane, at work or in California these past two days I would have been so pissed. Glorious weather here in the Emerald City. Enough to make you want to open your windows, hang your smalls outside to dry and start doing some winter yard clean up.

Oh wait, I did all that.

The rest of the week looks good, well, unless you don't like air stagnation.

I see a car wash in my future and many more smalls to be dried outside.


Thursday, January 25, 2007

Forgive my radio silence.

I am still sick. Sick enough that I have not been at work for the last three days. That is sick for me. I come in with the dengue fever.

TH is better and thankfully took Ernest with her today.

Nothing much to report. We have crocii and snowdrops blooming. The hellebores are starting as well. I think I'm going to force some forsythia this week.

Has anyone been to Greece? I'm going in September for my cousin's big fat Iranian/Greek wedding. I'm hoping to spend 10 days there - mostly with my parents and then a few in London. I'm excited to go, not excited to plan.

How is that for a change?


Monday, January 22, 2007

redux redux

I have another cold. I can pinpoint the vector. TH has it too.

Neither of us are impressed. I'm just a day behind her in the symptoms and I've already cleared my schedule for tomorrow. I'll probably work from home.

My computer came back from Melbourne with a lovely estate bottled Pinot. I'll probably wait to drink that, but I'm excited get some stuff tested this week.

Other than that, off to check on the perfect roast chicken again.


Sunday, January 21, 2007

We're all home. Safely and soundly.

Thank god.

No travel until the first week of February and that is easy.

Nothing interesting to report. I'm dealing with all sorts of news, some good, some sad.

More later.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

back home

We made it.

I'm in pain, but surviving. I look like the old guy who shuffled on Laugh In. I was quite happy to take a hot shower and change.

Now, I have to unpack and pack again.


Friday, January 12, 2007

swooning while powerpointing

Is this possible?

I am so hosed.

I cannot get this going. I will be up until I leave for SAT on Monday am just getting my presentation together for AMS. Why?

I just can't get into to it.

I just can't figure out what to say. Partially due to the fact that I am not doing the programming, but sort of managing the project and honestly, that makes it harder. A concept of operations will be fine, but not very interesting.

So, here I sit, totally rocking out to Blitzen Trapper, Final Fantasy, Bedroom Eyes and other bands featured on 3hive. I even bought a few cds today because I was swooning to the same songs over and over again.

I like that.

Well, short of a miracle, I will be in SAT with completed presentation on Monday afternoon, ice storms and what not be damned.


Thursday, January 11, 2007

Weather - yipee

I am going to Phoenix this weekend with the delusion that I can walk 13.2 miles in a row without collapsing. With all good intentions, I really thought I could train for this, but things (life) got in the way, and now, I'm just going and hopefully glide, two pairs of socks and the fact that it will be cold will help.

I hope.

Ditto for San Antonio, should be damn cold, which is better than hot because it will be okay to bundle up and wear jeans and sweaters and down for my meetings.

Yes, I need a better meeting wardrobe. I am working on it, really!

Other than that, life goes on.


Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Snow day

Global warming? I think not.

More of the white stuff and below freezing weather for the emerald city. I was at work and we had two inches of snail - hail and snow combined. Its not a meterological term, its mine.

So, my drive home was interesting because everyone was afraid to go up the hill to the main road. Granted tomorrow morning will be ugly because the road will freeze into sheet ice. I don't really need to go in, I can work from home, but I probably should make the attempt anyways.

Its strange these new fangled snow days. I remember as a child spending all night wondering if school would be cancelled or not and listening to the AM radio station with my mom in the morning to see weather our district and later our school was closed or had a two hour late opening. Now everything is posted on the web, I suppose its also announced on the radio, but the web just makes it easier but less suspenseful if you know what I mean.

The snow was perfect here, not too much, the roads are clear, but probably now icy. I have to leave in a few minutes to pick up my brother from the airport. All the plants are underneath their little blankets and covered with mulch, boughs and lit up with balls of christmas lights. It looks quite festive. The lemons have taken refuge in the front hall. I am looking forward to the building of the library in the next year or so so that they can be wheeled in for the winter.

I'm hoping that you are all snug in your homes as well.


Monday, January 08, 2007

What I had for dinner

Sorry, no pictures.

In my other life I play an harried overweight cranky person (hah, had you fooled) that cares about what she eats. Today I had a great message board exchange about roasted chicken that ended with a recipe and some tips on making the perfect roasted chicken.

We eat roasted chicken once a week. TH likes dark meat, I prefer white. We eat it the first night and then make something with the leftover meat - usually some sort of casserole. The body goes into stock and is seen in a soup or base for chicken pot pie.

Recently my chickens have been a disaster - not very flavorful, too juicy (strange), undercooked or just blah. I started to loathe the idea of that bird for dinner.

My pal, Lili, turned me on to Sunset magazine's roast chicken recipe. This recipe was simple, tasty and everything cooked perfectly. I'm not one for big roasters, since there are only two of us most nights, but honestly, with these results, I'll be reaching for a six pounder next week and trust me, I'll never baste again. We served the chicken with a steamed artichoke and baked delicata squash from the fall harvest. Delicious!

Thanks Lili for the tip. We're on a streak here chez floraandflying, over a week with decent dinners and creative leftovers.