Table for Six

October 18, 2013 at 1:51 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , )

Scott and I are hosting a dinner party tomorrow night.  We’re having over my newly pregnant friend and her husband, along with an old college buddy of mine and the new guy he’s dating.  I’m really excited to introduce all of my friends to each other and we’re going to watch The Witches of Eastwick after we eat so I don’t see how anything could possibly go wrong.  Unless I mess up the meal, that is!

I’ve never cooked for six people before so it’s a little intimidating.  It’ll also be extra interesting because our table only sits four so we’ll be doing some improvising when it comes to seating arrangements.  Thank god for folding chairs, right?  I’m pretty sure we’ll all fit so now it’s a matter of making a tasty meal that everyone (even my dairy-free boyfriend) can enjoy.  Luckily, I have the internet and it helped me come up with some ideas.

Let’s Dinner Party!

Here’s what’s on the menu:

  • Toasted baguette sandwiches featuring marinated eggplant, zucchini, provolone cheese, pesto and tomatoes
  • Mashed cauliflower with chives and roasted garlic
  • Macaroni and cheese with red and yellow peppers and spinach.  This is actually vegan and the “cheese” sauce I found includes cannellini beans and a sweet potato, among other things.  I’m a little nervous about this especially since I love me some good old-fashioned regular processed cheese food product but this got great reviews and looks pretty good so I’m going to just go for it.

I also found a recipe that calls for baking macaroni and cheese in muffin cups so you wind up with mac and cheese muffins.  I’m going to throw all caution to the wind and just incorporate one recipe with the other and see what happens.

Hopefully it will be the best meal anyone has ever had in their entire life but if not, I can always order pizza.  And at least Jack Nicholson, Cher, Michelle Pfeiffer and Susan Sarandon will be around to keep us company!

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IKEA’d Out

October 8, 2012 at 3:09 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , )

If you’re like Scott and I (relatively broke but in dire need of furniture that isn’t falling apart and from college/elementary school days), IKEA is the place to go.  We luckily live within an hour of one (actually two) of these monolithic stores and we made a trek out there on Saturday.  As it does with IKEA, the simple idea of purchasing a new bookcase and bedroom dresser turned into a two-day long affair that included cursing, sweating, bitching and moaning.  At least on my part, because Scott enjoys this sort of thing.  IKEA is ideal for do-it-yourself furniture and luckily he’s good at putting stuff together, whereas I enjoy the organizational aspect of rearranging and was able to fill our new pieces with clothes, books and records.  We left Saturday morning and wandered around the store for a while, dreaming about the sort of apartment we will have after we win the lottery or rob a bank.  He talked me out of buying some things we didn’t need (a brand new entertainment center wasn’t exactly on the list) and convinced me to buy some things we did (we now have grown up glasses instead of plastic cups nabbed at Mardi Gras).  We made it out of the store and through all of the putting together/rearranging without killing each other so as my sister said, this relationship must truly be meant to be.

Be our guest!

We were able to get rid of the dresser/book case that Scott has had since he was a kid, as the drawers didn’t really close and it was on its last legs.  I teased him about it until he reminded me that when we met my dresser didn’t even have all its drawers, so that shut me up.  I also threw out a crappy little bookcase that really didn’t fit many books, as well as an end table that had been Scott’s coffee table in his bachelor days.  The dresser we added matches the one I bought about a year ago and the new bookcase…well, it really ties the living room together.  Even The Dude agrees.  We completely finished playing house Sunday afternoon and then spent the night feeling all grown up and very fancy.  If this isn’t the adult life, I don’t know what is.

I should mention that, in true IKEA fashion, the price couldn’t really be beat.  They were having some promotion where if you bought lunch and spent over $100, your lunch tab would be deducted from your final total upon checkout (that alone saved us a little over $20).  We managed to score the bookcase, dresser (with five shelves), two bedside lamps, three new rugs and the set of six glasses for a little over $200.  Since we had been saving up for such an excursion, it was totally manageable and could have only been better if everything had put itself together and arranged itself on its own, like something from Beauty and the Beast.  Maybe that’ll be the IKEA of the future?  One can only hope!

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Goodbye Blue Monday

January 11, 2010 at 11:23 am (Uncategorized) (, , , )

The title of my post today is what it is for two reasons – the first is that my Monday is off to a significantly better start than last Friday and the second is that it’s the lesser known title of one of my favorite Kurt Vonnegut books (Breakfast of Champions, or Goodbye Blue Monday).  Fun fact for the day: Kurt Vonnegut was born in Indianapolis, Indiana.  More widely known fun fact:  he became a brilliant satirist and author, as well as the honorary president of the American Humanist Association.  Go Hoosiers!

As I mentioned, my day today is going much smoother than Friday.  To be honest, it was just the Friday workday that gave me problems; as soon as I was out the door things felt a bit better.  My boys took me out for a nice dinner since it was their last night in town and we shared one of those lovely moments where everything seemed perfectly aligned and I was truly thankful for their friendship.  I’m sure my martini also had something to do with my inner warmth and fuzzies, but regardless it was a good way to cap off their visit.

They departed on Saturday and I spent the afternoon visiting a friend (who I sincerely hope is feeling better) and enjoying my book club book at a coffee shop.  Note to self: next month be sure to start your book earlier.  Reading 530 pages in less than a week is a bit of a challenge when you have to entertain/go to work/sleep.  Saturday night was full of pasta making and Simpsons watching with the guy I’m seeing and Sunday was the perfect day to burrow deep within my couch.  I read, napped, ate and read some more.  I didn’t turn on music or the television all day and let me tell you, the silence that ran through my apartment was glorious.  All of the peace, quiet and sleep helped me to wake up bright-eyed and bushy-tailed this morning and ready for work.  Okay that’s not entirely accurate but I was able to face the Monday with a bit of a smile and the rare bit of sunshine outside has only improved my mood.  I’m so thankful that my office has windows!

Since I feel like such a good grown up today, I’m going to comment on two things that happened over the weekend that only added to my I’m-a-big-girl-now thinking.  The first is somewhat sad and the second is somewhat super (to me, at least).

Usually, this is me on any given weekend.  I love to sleep in and I tell myself every morning during the week that I will be rewarded for getting up at the crack of dawn five days in a row by an extended slumber on days six and seven.  However, as of late I’ve noticed that I have a more difficult time laying in bed all day, and this makes me sad.  Growing up, I had no problem sleeping until one or two in the afternoon (I realize this might sound late to some, but it worked for me so don’t knock it).  Now, though, I’m lucky to stay in bed til eleven (yes, I know this is still relatively late but try to work with me here).  In fact on Saturday I was wide awake at 8:45am.  What’s up with that?  Mind you, it’s not completely awful because I’m obviously able to achieve more with my day but it’s still not the lateness I’ve been used to.  Will I continue to wake up earlier and earlier as I age, until I’m one of those retiree’s who’s up daily at five?  I sincerely hope not.  For now I’ll continue to go with the flow and wake when my body wants me to, but if it continues to be earlier and not later than I will forever mourn that part of me that was once able to gladly sleep the day away.  I suppose that’s part of growing up.

Another part of growing up is becoming excited to make the kind of adult purchases that are best used behind closed doors.  You know, the noisy type of grown up toy that comes with attachments and plastic galore.  That’s right, I’m talking vacuum cleaners.

I recently purchased this beauty and I feel almost guilty at how excited I was.  My apartment has hardwood floors so I’ve managed fairly well without a vacuum thus far but having a cat makes good ‘ol sweeping more difficult and so I finally broke down and bought something with suction.  I am not disappointed.  The amount of hair and whatnot that I sucked up on its first run both validated my purchase and slightly disgusted me.  The vacuum also has this feature where it somehow cleanses the air as it sweeps, which I was skeptical of until my guy friends said they noticed a difference.  Huzzah!  A well thought out, grown up purchase that actually works!

Am I a giant nerd for getting so excited over such little things?  Oh, probably.  Do I care?  Nope, not a bit.  Take pleasure wherever you can find it, even if it resides in bagless vacuum cleaners!

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