30 November 2009

Not nearly as energetic as I get during Boston, let me tell you

Some Black Friday Rock Band for your entertainment pleasure. That's my sister Erin on the bass and my dad Tim on the guitar. Stepmom Nancy, thanks for recording this for the whole world to see.

And with that, I'm NaBloPoMo'd out! I'll let you know if I won anything other than pride for posting once a day for a month.

29 November 2009


If I had the time and $$, I would so so so SO be doing this.

You should and make me jealous.

28 November 2009

I Will Annoy You

I'm almost done with my Christmas shopping, at least for my family. My two large immediate families.

Go ahead, hate me. It is ok, I would normally hate on go getters like me.

Eenywho, there are a few family members who I'm still working on, so I can't show particular things, but I also wanted to point out that my lovely friend Karel is having a sale until 7 December.

Check out sunshower designs for tres pretty stuff! Until 7 December! Woot!

PS. One thing I will show you, because I think it is a bit overwhelming for the person in mind but maybe you know, not for... me. Hint, hint. SO. GLORIOUS.

27 November 2009

Self Promotion

So, while you are recovering from your turkey induced coma, why not check out what I do for a living? Namely, write emails for things like this.

Today's email includes the phrase "kick up your slippered feet". I hope mine are engaged in some Rock Band, but Happy Black Friday to you all anyway.

26 November 2009


Happy Thanksgiving, my American readers! And to those non-US peeps, I still wish a happy day to you, as well.

Things I'm Thankful For
- being in Florida in November
- cilantro
- long brunches with my former roommates
- long lunches with current coworkers
- in general, eating over an extended period of time with people who make me laugh
- my bed
- my West Coast ladies
- Glee
- brevity

25 November 2009

Interview Time

For the second time, I participated in the Great Interview Experiment. And with everyone in the world to chose from, I got interviewed by someone in my backyard. And I interviewed someone who lives in Melbourne, where I lived for 6 months. Small world.

So, without further ado, here's Carla's interview. She's a magnificent writer, so you are in for a treat.

Hi Carla, sorry it took me so long to get to you with questions, you've already completed yours! Impressive. I just wanted to read your blog a bit and make it a bit more personal.

I do have some questions in mind but I want the interview to be a bit more organic and conversational, so I'll just feed you one at a time.

You mentioned you are in Uni getting your Master's and you are a mom with two young kids. How do you do it all?

Xanax. Yep they are everything that people say they are... Seriously though...you forgot to add in the busy Cafe that I own! How do I do it all?

The kid's part is relatively easy. Once they can wipe their own tushies and open a pack of cornflakes in the morning everything else is chocolate brownies! (well forgive me- but I like chocolate brownies better than a piece of cake.)

Business...well to be honest I just halved that workload recently by selling one of my cafes earlier this year. I'm not sure if I had the seven year itch with them...but I'm glad that I made the decision. My hubby who works in the technical-sphere said he has noticed a huge difference in me on the scale of calm to frazzle.

I was tired of frazzle.

As for the studies, it would have been easy at that point to sit back and enjoy some quiet time, but instead I applied for the post-grad masters course in writing because I felt that it was time to release a dream that has been sitting dormant inside for awhile. I'm not sure if it's a win or a fail yet... but if you want something bad enough you simply find or make the time for it. I truly believe in the old adage that we can only be the best mothers and the best wives and the best friends that we can be when we are happy within ourselves.

the kids get a big kick out of sitting down to do our homework all together...

I can't believe I left out the cafes, especially since I worked in a variety of them for EIGHT YEARS! That makes that Xanax super super important. Three of my four parents were in school at some point during my childhood, but we never did our homework together - lucky kids!

Eenywho, on to my next question. I studied abroad in Australia (Melbourne Uni, even!) and have long wanted to live abroad again. If you could pick up and move anywhere with no drama, where would move and why?

You've lived in my beautiful town of Melbourne... so it's no surprise that I'd say- I wouldn't live anywhere else in this world! (...and I've crisscrossed the globe so I know what I'm talking about...) But for the purpose of this exercise I will say London, England. I'd like to say it's for the history, or because it's the perfect geographic base to allow me to trace back through my European roots of England and Ireland and Poland and Russia, or due to any other number of intelligent and culturally significant reasons...but really...the truth is...it's because men with British accents make me swoon...

Feel free not to use the you-tube link... I'm a little mad for Colin Firth so I thought I'd share (perhaps overshare!!!) LOL

When did you live in Melbourne?

Great question by the way!

I'm enjoying the way you are doing this... it allows me not to think too much ahead and it does feel very conversational...

Oh the link is a keeper. I LOVE Colin Firth as well. One of my life goals is to make a man with an accent fall in love with me.

I was in Melbourne from February-June 2003 - almost seven years ago! My little sister spent her semester abroad at Bond in Queensland, so I got the chance to visit her this past April. As lovely as the beaches were, I'm a total Victoria snob.

You mentioned crisscrossing the globe - do you have a top five foreign locales that everyone should visit? Did you do much of this traveling with your kids? I also lived for year in England when I was growing up and me and my large family drove all over Europe. So while I can say that I've been to Venice and Paris, it was as an 11 year old with all my siblings - I imagine it would be a different experience today!

I feel blessed to have been able to travel, and I understand the importance of exposing my children to the greater world in which we live. They are by now pretty good travelers having journeyed across Australia and having done four trips abroad to such far away places as China and Japan.

I find this an interesting question…particularly since what is foreign to me may not be foreign to you. And I’m intrigued that you have asked me for five places, not one or three but five, so let’s see if I can give you a place to visit, somewhere. I have been, somewhere to satisfy each of your senses…

Beijing, China

Beijing is for me the ultimate in contradictions, it's all high-tech lightning speed nestled beside ancient hutongs and revolutionary scars. It’s all about the sights. The bustle of humanity, the snaking Great Wall, the immensity of the soul-breaking Tiananmen Square and the most delicious of them all, The Forbidden City- home to the Dynastic Emperors and their hundreds of Empresses and Consorts and Concubines and a mind boggling array of offspring. The grounds of which are now visited by Chinese tourist families, who sightsee the magnificent ancient ways of privilege and excess, holding the hands of their single children tightly.


Pentecoste Island, Vanuatu

Every year the local men of this island village perform an amazingly-scary ritual called N’gol or Land Diving, jumping head first from hand built scaffolds miles in the sky. And between them and death is their Gods and a single ropy green vine. But this is not what will touch you in Pentecoste. As we snorkeled the azure waters pointing in delight at extraordinarily coloured corals and fish, my daughter met a smiling and happy island girl on the soft sands of the beach. And by the very nature of little girls there was no shyness or awkwardness over language barriers, there was just an immediate friendship. They showed each other their bags.

My daughter had her DS and ipod and lollies and toys and other girly treasures.

The smiling and happy island girl had a shell and the stub of an old grey-lead pencil.

It was a lesson in the material nature of happiness given to my daughter, like a gift wrapped in banana leaves, that touched all of our hearts.


Rome, Italy

In Rome I was taken to a restaurant that screamed so badly of cliché it almost made my eyeballs bleed red, white and green. From the expected check of the table cloths right through to the stubs of melted candles stuffed into old bottles of chianti, still in their little straw bikinis. The waiter seeing that we were foreigners took it upon himself to organize the menu. He said it would be traditional. I wasn't holding out for too much.

But what followed was a meal that was operatic to the palate.

Simple pane, bread slices drizzled with olive oil, melanzane- vinegared slices of purple skinned eggplant, forkfuls of mushrooms clinging to tomato drenched tagiatelle,
tender osso buco scattered with shavings of aged romano cheese and flat leaf parsley, and limone gelato so glacial and lemony-brutal that our lips remained puckered in ecstasy till the following morning.


New York City, U.S.A

Good Lawd, the cacophony of New York is the sweetest clang of music to my ears. It’s a heady brilliant scream of conceit, from a goddamn sexy bitch who has every effen right to be conceited.

Traffic and music and words and food and art that’s the hiphop-techno-crunch-folky-rock-ballad of your soul. And the taxi driver who drives with one hand on his horn and the other waving the bird as he screams out the window at the arsehole who just cut us off.

Don’t worry, no probs
, we’re in no hurry! we say wide-eyed-petrified from the back seat.
S’okaaaay the taxi driver sings bringing his head back into the cab,
Relaaaax man!

This is how we do things in New York.


Melbourne, Australia

On any given summer evening there is a smell that wafts, tantalizingly over the suburban fences of my home town, Melbourne.

Can you smell it? Come stand at the front of my house, yes, right here on the footpath. Lift your nose to the air, breath it in deeply. That’s the inhalation of Australia.

It’s blended gum leaves, fresh cut lawn, and steaks grilling on the bbq. You can almost taste the potato salad and smell the coconuty sunscreen on the children who are running around in their bathers eating sausages in square bread squirted with tomato sauce. The salty air of the ocean is twenty minutes to one side and dark mossy smells from the foresty mountain ranges are twenty minutes the other way. And in between, is the brackish upside down river that courses through a city so multicultural that it simply smells of the foods from all nations.

I mean, am I right or am I right? The lady spins a yarn. Thanks, Carla! It has been a pleasure.

ETA: Sorry the font is and has been all kinds of wonky, I've been trying to figure it out, but why deal with html at home when I get enough of it at work? Not that I'm drowning in it or anything, but a little goes a long way...

24 November 2009


Last summer, I interned at the National Geographic Museum. And I LOVED it. So whenever they do cool things - and that's a lot - I'm proud. And they have just opened something massively cool.

The exhibit, Terra Cotta Warriors, is open until the end of March and it is the last top of the artifacts' four stop tour in the US. I got to see the exhibit the day before it opened this week (oh la la, be jealous) and it is really breath taking. If you are in DC at all in the next season, you really need to go.

If the $12 price tag deters you, go on Wednesday at 5:30pm, when they give away 200 free tickets for the 6pm time slot.

23 November 2009

Homestrech and GIE

The end of November is in sight and good thing, too, since I'm losing steam. In fact today, I'm not even going to really write here but instead point you to MamaKaren's interview of me, as part of Citizen of the Month/Neil's Great Interview Experiment. Thanks for the great questions, MK!

And I'm out.

22 November 2009

Party in the USA

How could you improve on this?

How about this --

21 November 2009

Taste of Parenthood

The dog I watch occasionally is a bit of a diva in the rain. I mean, I can't blame her. I wouldn't really want someone to watch me go to the bathroom ever, let alone when it is miserable out. So it can take some doing to make sure she goes to the bathroom during a storm.

But boy, when she does, I am so. freakin. happy. and proud. I even exclaim. And laugh a little. And I'm that slightly off kilter woman, holding a bag of poop, crying in happiness.

20 November 2009

Green Rant of the Day

In this day and age, why do I have to argue with someone about turning off the light when you leave a room? I don't care if it is an energy saving light bulb, energy is energy, all goes to our bill and destruction of the earth, etc.


In other non hippie rage news, I'm about to wash my hair for the first to see what it looks like curly. Will report back soon.

19 November 2009


Don't have much energy because I just transformed THREE POUNDS of turkey into homemade meatballs.

To all those who were freaking out about not having turkey at the office potluck but who weren't going to do anything about it, I say, SHUT UP AND EAT MY BALLS.

18 November 2009

I'm such a whiner

Here's the pic I brought in.

And here's me!
Oh the drama over a hair cut!

I haven't tried Samy Big Curls curl defining creme yet, but am tres excited and if it doesn't work out, eh, $4 down the tubes. If it is the bees knees, you know I'll be telling everyone about it.

Other things featured in my vlog (barf, did I just use that word?):

- Conair Infiniti: Pretty nice hair dryer, but I only dry my bangs, so it doesn't get a whole lot of abuse. Does its job adequately.

- Conair Ultra Slim Ceramic Flat Iron: nothing too fancy here, but again, only for bangs, so does its job well enough for me.

Will comment on other products once I've used them. Addendum to video: already tried air difuser on for size and of course, doesn't fit. Lies, I tell you, lies! But hopefully this is a temporary set back.


17 November 2009

Second Thoughts

I'm sure you are tired of me talking about both a) yoga and b) my hair, so... I'm only going to talk about one of them in this post! BULLY FOR YOU!

So, of course, I have a great hair day right before the day I'm supposed to cut it all off. And I'm having second thoughts. What if I have mom hair? What if it gets way too curly for its own good and eats my face in the middle of the night? Because that has been totally known to happen when hair gets curly. Oh the humanity!

Waving good bye to my youthful and non-mom hair length.

Oh look! It is my friend, Juliet! Hi, Juliet! We had our six year friend-aversery this summer (what up, nerd caamp!). She would like to tell you that she doesn't have a butt chin, that is a scratch. In the interest of full disclosure, it was a pimple that she popped that became a scab that she then hit with her blowdryer. You can see why we are friends.

Anyway, the hair.

I hope it isn't hideous. Will post pics tomorrow of (hopefully) infertile hair. Of course, it will be straight, so won't be much of an indicator anyway.

16 November 2009

I did it!

Um, who am I? Three yoga classes, three days. My abs hate me. But I do like that I'm moving around more. In fact, I feel like I need to do it more. So I'm thinking of joining a gym.

The couch potato wants to sweat? Well, there will need to be a tv attached to the bike.

15 November 2009

Quick Review of Pirate Radio

Music is great. Kenneth Branagh plays a very good evil man. There is a guy named Twatt. I really really need a man with an accent to fall in love with me before I die. Surprisingly stressful there are the end. Quality flick, will likely Netflix it once it comes out. Go see it.

14 November 2009

Yoga Crunch

So, back in September, I bought a 10 class, 3 month yoga pass. And I used two classes in quick succession... and then let it falter. Oops, my bad. But now, there are three weeks left on the pass and I have 8 classes left. Which means an average of 2.33 classes over the next three weeks.

I went to one today and have another one scheduled for tomorrow, so I'm on the right track... wish me luck!

13 November 2009

Wannabe fashion blogger

So, I don't have the check book or the time to be a dedicated fashionista, but I do follow several fashion bloggers. Today, the independent line M641 was featured on Broke and Beautiful.

What do you think?
Sam says that I need to let go of the Renn Fair, but I think I like it! And while I love getting huge deals at the big chains, I do like to be a hippie sometimes and support independent outfits.

12 November 2009

My roommate just said Rasputin, which means I need to post this

Rah, rah, Rasputin, lover of the Russian queen.

Thank you, Boney M.

11 November 2009


So, last year, I did Neil aka Citizen of the Month's Great Interview Experiment. And it was fun! So when he posted that he was doing it again, I jumped. Kinda literally, in that I was the 5th person to comment.

And now I've frozen up! I'm hoping that some great questions will come to me over the weekend... or that you guys will have some ideas? Please, pretty please?

What are some questions that you would ask a random blogger?

10 November 2009

Thought Upon Having First Lollipop in Years

I wonder how many Tootsie Roll Pop Wrappers I saved with that American Indian?
Seriously, I think I had dozens of these. DOZENS. And for what? I can't even remember.

Can anyone remind me?

09 November 2009

Semi Annual Hair Cut/ New Glasses Speech

So, I haven't had a drastic haircut, length-wise, for over five years. Through the years, every three to four years, I chop off all my hair. Like... allllll my hair. My last donation was September 2004 and I've been slowly working on bangs since March 2008. I feel like a major change but I don't want to go super short again. I'm thinking something like this, maybe a little longer, with a side swept bang.

Also, I need new glasses. What do you think of these?

Also, remember that I'm not a willowy blonde. I look like this.

ETA 11:04PM: Do you think I could pull this off? Too short with my mad curly hair and cheeks?

08 November 2009

Pig Pickin' Aftermath

So, I'm home from pig pickin'. And fun can be so exhausting. There was frisbee, football, and tons and tons of food. And beer. And scotch and ginger ale. And a bluegrass band. They did not take my requests. I'll never know why not.

07 November 2009

Pig Pickin'

By the time you read this, I should be elbow deep in some fine swine. Perhaps elbow deep is a bit of an exaggeration, but I do expect a healthy amount of hog. Nom. Also, s'mores. And maybe a beer.

I'm camping this weekend with some friends from work, though if we electing to spend this much time together outside the office, I can legit just call them friends. I do sometimes worry that I make the leapt to friendship too fast - and with Facebook, it can be oddly quantified - but as I grow older, I'm starting to worry less and less if people think I'm being crazy re: friendships. I like people!

Man, strange how a post about camping could turn into a treatise on how I veiw definitions of friendship. Also, can't wait to sleep in a tent.

06 November 2009

RIP, Levi-Strauss

He was the source of so many of my college readings. And I never stopped giggling when his name came up.

Levi! Like the jeans!

I shall continue to chuckle, my good man.

Also, I thought you were already dead. Sorry about that.

05 November 2009

I tip my hat to you, Al Gore

You're welcome, the hundreds and hundreds who follow J-money.

Some people may poo poo the importance of blogging and while I still love reading mags and books, there is something about the connectivity of the internet. It makes it so much easier to talk to someone whose writing I admire... and even though it may be something like a House five day forecast, it makes me happy that I can send something along to someone who is famous in their own way... and it matters!

The Internet: more than a series of tubes.

04 November 2009

Where is Tatiana and who is the sports fiend who took over her blog?

Right? I don't know myself... and I kinda like it.

It is the World Series, so that's something I generally like watching, but I'm caring more than I normally would. I'm exhausted but I've got Game 6 on right now. And it is depressing.

I was also at the Wizards- Heat game earlier tonight. Me. At a professional sporting event. And I didn't even have a hot dog! It was fun but I only stayed for the first half because of aforementioned tiredness... and aforementioned baseball game.

Maybe I'm augmenting my "like it and have something to talk to with guys" thing from Magic the Gathering (thanks, first boyfriend, for teaching me a game that I continue to bring up on first dates to this day) to sports. I already have the Orioles (painful as that may be), apparently I like the Wizards well enough (though I do like Dwanye Wade- Go Heat!) but football - I've got no clue. Redskins are doing shitty, so I guess... Ravens? But that just doesn't feel right. Eagles? I like their colors and I went to school there. Eh, I guess Ravens... for now.

03 November 2009

Just Under the Wire

Only my third day and I'm already barely making. With going away this week (w00t, pig pickin'!), I'm going to have to some magic and post some things ahead of time.

For now, if you are on the internet, I'm sure you've seen this, but if you haven't: you're welcome.

02 November 2009

Chutley, don't fail me now

Those who know me know I'm not a super obsessed sports fan, but I was raised to despise the Yankees and I went to college outside of Philly, so I have no problem rooting for the Phillies. Bonus: players named Chase Utley (Chutley, obvi) and Pedro Feliz (Happy Peter). Of course, I'm sitting her on my couch, Game 5, and the Yankees are up 3 games to 1. Boo-urns.

Maybe if Mac was allowed to give Chutley his letter, this wouldn't be happening.


ETA 9:10pm: What was that? "5-1 Phillies, here in the third... Phillies, facing elimination, up by 4."

ETA 10:39pm: Two homeruns in the 7th? Yes, please.

ETA 11:27pm: Way to make it stressful, Phillies! If you had blown that SIX POINT LEAD, I think I would have cried.

And seriously, where did all this caring come from? I missed How I Met Your Mother et al.

01 November 2009


So, today is November 1st, which means one thing around these parts: NaBloPoMo. This marks nablo's fourth year, and my third (god, let that sink in), so be on the lookout for daily posts. May not all be words, probably a fair amount of pictures and songs on the busier days.

Some changes you might see. I've been thinking a lot about my various blogs, for work, for me, and how much easier it would be to combine them all here. A few major things are defining me at the moment: my new job (E-Activism Fellow at Oceana! w00t! go me!) and the fact that I'm a single gal in DC. These things are always subject to change, but for some reason, segmenting my writing feels a little like segmenting up my life. So, that means that there will likely be more work and dating writing here on these parts. But we'll see, we shall see. Sharing an email I'm sending out to over 300,000 people is one thing, writing about my latest dating debacle when I know my family reads this is another. So... we'll see.

In a totally unrelated note, today, I've watched Sleepless in Seattle, About Last Night, Vikings v. Packers, parts of Ghostbusters, Knocked Up, Brothers and Sisters, and Game 4 of the World Series. Let's here it for a solid couch day.