I dont think Ive shared this website before, its a blog devoted to free iTunes. How awesome is that? Its getting free music, without the work of finding it. To help get us into the holiday spirit (for those of you waiting till December kicks in, I understand but the downloads are usually only good for a week. So download now and listen later.) there is a free download from Mannheim Steamroller and also, Carol of the Bells . You can listen to it while you put up more twinkle lights.
Hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving, I sure did. Jason and I went over to our friend John and Sarah’s home along with Sarah’s brother and another couple from 514. We are a collection of people whos families are not near by. The house was warm with turkey smells and I got to hold Baby Emma to my heart content. There was lots of great food cooked by all (cept my green beans seemed to lack the actual green beans which of course made me sit there worrying about them). We put on Rob Bell’s last tour ‘Everything Is Spiritual’ after our bellies were full and the women promptly fell a sleep. Poor Rob Bell, hes not boring by any means, turkey dinner just has more power than he does. The boys went over to Circuit City at 9pm for the sale they were opening up for. Jason said he had never seen anything like it, with the line to the door wrapped around the parking lot. After they came back empty handed I had my doubts of joining John and Sarah at 5am for some Black Friday shopping. After looking through many ads and thinking it over, I opted to call them when I woke around 730am and join them. They could get a nap in after the shopping adventure while I had to go to work. They actucally ended up back home early becasue it was so nutty. Maybe someday I will actually experience Black Friday on the other side of the counter. But if this craziness keeps up, I might just stick to tradition and stay home with the leftovers.
In my different circles, there has been a common factor, that keeps popping up. A lady who has nicked named herself Pioneer Women . She writes a few blogs, but the cooking one was the one that made me become a fan. When Im looking for a recipe, Im always drawn to the one with a picture. I need to know what it looks like for two reason. One, Im a visual person, step by step pictures work well for me. Second, I want confirmation that it does in fact look like this. Disclaimer about this post, its very Pioneer Women style and well, my roommate already made fun of me for taking photos as a cook but dang it, it was fun! [ Brandi, I hope you took photos as you made your Pioneer Women Thanksgiving dinner.]
Ah well this has been something Ive been doing before on this blog. Its just been a while since we’ve seen random play list brought to you by the shuffle feature on my iPod. I havnt been on walks in a while. It was too hot during the summer. Fall got busy for me. I need to get off my hinney and go now that weather is pretty awesome. Anyways, I wanted some tunes to cook my green beans and heres what I got:
All Right Here by Sara Groves (Good girl power song. A favorite for sure.)
And Can It Be by Sandra McCracken (Good upbeat hymn.)
Across the Universe by Rufus Wainwright (Beatles cover. Bringing two awesome things together. Yes.)
Magic Trick by M.Ward (I just adore this song. I dance around a sing a little every time its on.)
God Rest Ye Merrt Gentleman by Barenaked Ladies (CURSES! Emily Freeman are you in my iPod turning on the Christmas music two days early? CURSES!)
On the Divide by Bebo Norman (Its been a while for me and Bebo. I didnt know who this was a first.)
Wish In This World by Edwin McCain (What? You know you like some Edwin McCain too.)
I Want a Broken Heart by Derek Webb (This song seemed really out of place.)
The Best Is Yet to Come by Frank Sinatra (Its as though he was singing of the green beans.)
Jessamyn’s Reel by Chris Thile (Wonderful song. I rarely say that about an instrumental. Makes stirring around things fun.)
Alright, now we have our Green Bean Mix going, onto the production. Now, this is no means a step by step on how to make these green beans, whos recipe is titled “The Most Delicious Green Beans” . Well see if it holds up to its name tomorrow. This is just more of you sitting in a chair in the kitchen with me as I fix these green beans.
Ah my little kitchen space. I make it work though becasue I love my house despite its lack of counter space. So we’ve got a hot pan from IKEA (love my IKEA cook wear) and bacon. One pound of bacon (which I use all but two pieces of).
This is not becasue I love bacon a lot. This becasue the pan on the bacon package and my pan match. Confirmation Im using the right thing! And yeah its Costco bacon. You dont even want to know how much more of this stuff is in my fridge.
So, the recipe said to have strips of bacon. I always burn bacon when they are in long strips for some reason. And I didnt really get down with a big fat layer on top of the green beans. Wouldnt that cause problems when taking a soup to it to dump on the Thanksgiving plate? Kitchen scissors to the rescue!
Do not judge! There is nothing wrong with canned green beans. Look I even got the no salt added kind since you know, there is ton of bacon in this dish.
I know they look funny. Its not becasue they are canned, its becasue the flash colored it funny. They are shiny! Pretty green beans.
Those are pretty bubbles of grease! Crispy brown bacon! YUM!
I know, I know. Its like McDonalds putting calories on the side of french fries. You dont want to know how much fat drained off the bacon. I just kinda had to know sorta thing. (Its little over 1/2 cup in case you cant read it.)
Jason rented a Wii game Ive been wanting to try called Cooking Mama. Its pretty fun and very Japaneses. Well, Im awesome at chopping on Cooking Mama. Not a whole lot other than that, but I always get those points and cream the computer when I chop. Then real life comes and Im not so awesome at chopping. Though this is the first time I didnt cry when cutting an onion. That in itself is a victory.
Dont worry, it isnt more bacon fat. This is apple cider vinegar that goes into the bacon fat. With some sugar. But this little beauty is one of my favorite new kitchen items. A measuring shot glass. Its way too fun and great for small liquid measurements.
Final product! Okay well not final, final. Its gonna sit in the fridge over night then cook at 350 for 45 minutes tomorrow before I head to my friends home after a little morning shift at the ‘Bucks (time and a half!). And I left the almonds at Jason’s but they will go on and be awesome along side the bacon and green beans. (Another shot glass appearance, I love it so much.)
A close up of the pretty green beans and toppings. Have a great Thanksgivings!
There are three girls and myself who got to know each other at work. We got a long really well and between our crazy schedules never see each other. Even when we work. So we try to get together once a month to grab dinner at somewhere a little fancier for a girls night out. This night has been a long time coming since we planned it a month in advance and then one of them got sick so it got prolonged a week. Sadly, even after all that, one of them had to bail at the last minute. It was sad without her, but the amazing food we had helped ease our pain. I didnt plan on getting dinner, just a drink and a treat. But I planned poorly with my meal choices and needed something besides alcohol and sugar. Dana and I both got a bowl of Chicken Curry Sweet Potato soup. Oh my damn. It was really really good soup. So good that I even thought about licking my bowl. Dana didnt finish her so she handed her bowl over to me. This place is within walking distance from me, its dangerously close for another bowl to be my future.
Karen and I spilt a Flirtini, which made me feel a little bit like JD on Srubs who loves ordering his Appletinis. Its a silly drink with a silly name but man it was good. What a Flirtini is made up of is pineapple juice, volka 9(flavored maybe), champagne. Thing is, when it was brought out to us, the cocktail part of it was in a highball glass and the champagne in a champagne glass. No instrutions where given. We checked the menu for some. Nothing. We werent sure what to do. Do you drink it one sip from each? Do we mix it ourselves? They both were good enough to drink alone, I could of had 10 of the cocktail part no problem (it was sweet). So I poured some champagne into the cocktail. I have no idea if that was the correct way to drink a Flirtini or not.
For desert we decided to order something very different each so we could take bits of each others. Dana got a Italian Cream Cake which is a rich yellow cake layered with coconuts and pecans with cream cheese. Karen got a Turtle Cheesecake, which is a simple turtle mix of caramel, pecans and iced with fudge. I went for the fruit route to balance it all out with a Cherry Crumb Pie, a classic pie with a semolina crumb topping. Im having the rest of that yummy pie for breakfast this morning. Best part about our deserts? They were free. When the waiter brought us our checks he told us he took care of the deserts because he felt he ignored our table due to a large party downstairs. We did not feel ignored, but were very thankful for the free treats!
I love how some friends it doesnt matter that time has gotten away from us and our relationship is built again on a one night conversation over yummy dinner. We share our struggles and our praises in our current life. Talk about topics that make you think deeper and encourage you. Those are the girls nights out I wish I had more often.
Apparently this guy saw a girl on the subway on November 4th. He started a website to met her: NYgirlofmydreams.com . This video aired yesterday, the 13th. Thats less than 10 days it took for him to find her. To me, in a sea of millions of New Yorkers, they found each other. I think thats pretty amazing, in how quickly he found her. Also, I cant believe they went on national TV the day after their first meeting. I couldnt tell if he was just so thrilled to be with her or just flat out a nervous wreak, making him kinda awkward. Then again, if I was on national TV Id probably look the same. She seemed rather taken with the idea. Though I do think her friends are quite funny that only this would happen in America. Silly Americans.
“Look how pretty the sky is, Jason.”
He might be sick of me saying this. Whenever there is clouds after a rain storm or a wonderful sunset filling the sky full of colors like tonight, it makes me stop. Ive always loved the sky. Growing up in near the beach, I looked forward going away to camps to see the stars. Here in North Carolina, I think the sky is just clearer to see them, yet how often I forget to look up. Its evening like tonight I can help but be amazed at this huge sky. It helps me to be comforted in how big God is. Big sky. Big God. I dont know where that connection is made, but its a comforting thought to me.
This past summer I chopped my hair off. It was in effort to help bring my hair to one length once again after many years in layers. Apparently layers are best for girls like me who have fine hair. I like the layers, love them even, right after I get them. But then I go through how much of a pain it is to style them, wouldnt it be nice to just have long one length hair again? Yeah it would, and so I chop it. Then of course Im in love with my cute summer short hair cut… for about a week. Then the honeymoon feeling quickly turns into normal rotiune and then I just bored with my hair. Yet, I have to complete my mission of long hair at one length, so to mix it up I grow my bangs out. Jason loves this idea with the short hair cut, which he wasnt too crazy about in the first place. But of course after I did cut it, he liked it. Go figure. I grew my bangs out, so fun having long swept to the side bangs. Now my hair is at that funky in between stage of not short but not long. I HATE this stage. I do not think its flattering at all on me, but I know its part of the process so I suffer through because I have cute sweepy bangs to balance it all out. Then a friend of mine takes a picture of me at a party. Maybe it was a bad hair/bang day, but ew ew ew. My bangs just look stringy not cute and sweepy. And I had just gotten them cut not two weeks before that. So last week I made an appointment to get a haircut. Chopping these long crazy you were so cute and sweepy but turned on me to ugly stringy bangs. Its the day before my appointment and all this week my bangs have been wonderful. This always seems to happen. I get frustrated with my hair, make an appointment to fix the problem and well my hair behaviors. Its as if it knows or something. Never the less, I still plan on getting my hair cut tomorrow. Despite the pleas from Jason to not cut the sweepy bangs. I told him I didnt feel pretty in them to which he responded, then do what you need to feel good. Good man.
First night at my new youth group. Well, technically, its my third, but this time I went for me. Once I went when Jason was a volunteer there. Second when my friend, now boss, John was interviewing to be the youth pastor. Tonight was a whole new experience. I shadowed a wonderful gal who was showing me the ropes and more. The student leaders wanted to play a game I know well since the Jr High group back in Cali couldn’t get enough of it. Shuffle your buns. Its a simple game really, put some chairs in a circle, take away one and there is one person in the middle. That person has to grab an empty seat while the folks in the circle of chairs, well, shuffles their buns to keep the empty seat always moving. Im used to playing with this game with maybe 30 kids. Yeah, try 200 kids. It was so awesome, its hard to explain why but it so was. Thats how really I have to look at things from now on with planning the night. Im used to a smaller group, so things will be dramatically different. And it could be more awesome than I ever thought, like seeing 200 kids, shuffle their buns. The impact is just so different. I got to know a little bit more of some of the senior girls who I met on Thursday. One (and of course I cant remember her name! I didnt realize I was so bad with names until Im on new people overload like I have been this week) who I come to find out is from San Diego! Though we only lived 20 minutes apart for about a year before she moved, it was a nice connection. I learned a lot and know I still have tons to learn. Im have lots to apply for next week and a challenge of trying to build relationships while learning this new role.
And since I have been kinda quite about the Office lately, here is a nice youtube video of Jim and Pam through the season. So glad we are done with Roy.