Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Ten on Tuesday

Everyone I know (qualifier - everyone I know in the blog world) participates in Ten on Tuesday, so I thought I'd hop on that bandwagon.  I like the questions this week and it means I don't have to be creative on my own!

1. Do you decorate for Valentine’s day?
I usually do not, but I have seem some really cute decorations out there this year ... so maybe. We will see if it fits in the budget or if I can find some cheap and cute things!  
2. Does your desktop have a picture or computer graphic? Is it organized?
My desktop has a picture I took this summer of Peek A Boo Lake.  And it's very organized.  I try to clean it up once a week or so, I hate extra clutter.  
3. Do you use a paper planner, electric planner or no planner at all?
I have a paper planner that I am currently not using.  I used to use one when I was in undergrad and also in law school.  I've been using Google Calender lately, but I haven't sync-ed (is that proper?) it with my iPhone so it's really not all that handy unless I'm by my computer.  (which, let's be honest, I usually am).  
4. Do you change purses or bags often or stick with a good thing?
I have two main purses that I use.  One black and one brown.  I also just got a small tan purse (thank you Christmas!) that I love and am trying to remember to add into the rotation.  
5. What’s your favorite YouTube Video?
Antoine Dodson.  Duh.  
6. Do you use Turbo Tax or a real person to pay your taxes?
I use TurboTax -- I find it's easy enough for now.  
7. How many states have you set foot (or tire) in? Which ones?
Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming and Washington, D.C.  Whew that was hard.  

8. How many countries have you been in? Which ones?
Canada, Mexico, St. Thomas, Aruba, Bonaire, Japan, Italy, France, England, Ireland, Croatia, Belgium, The Netherlands, Switzerland, Germany and Austria.  I think it's pretty obvious that I LOVE to travel -- if I could find a way to make money traveling the world, I'd do it in a heartbeat.  
9. How many pillows are in your house? (Sleeping or decorative)
This is hard, but I think 11.  
10. How cold is too cold for flip flops?
I think it depends on wear you live ... I think I'll pull my sandals out when it hits 60 regularly.  

If you want to join up, hop on over to Roots and Rings and link up!  

Happy Tuesday Friends!  

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

What we're eating this week ...

This week is a short week for us ... we are heading to Indianapolis for a friend's wedding.  We've been looking forward to this weekend for a long time because our friend, Patman, who has been overseas in Afghanistan used his two weeks of R&R to attend the wedding.  We can't wait to see you!  (and the bride and groom, of course!)  Anyways, here's our recipes for the week:

Sunday - Pan-Seared Scallops with Linguine and Pine Nuts.  I tried this recipe back in October when J. was in Key West.  It's a delicious meal and a great recipe for those nights when you need something quick.

Monday - Crockpot Beef Stew.  I've been wanting to make a beef stew all winter and finally found a recipe that looks good.  The Pioneer Woman posted a beef stew recipe that looks AMAZING and I plan on trying in the near future, but for this week, I wanted something simple to throw in the crockpot.

Tuesday - The Pioneer Woman's Cajun Chicken Pasta, but we will be substituting shrimp for chicken.  Have to take advantage of the fresh seafood while we can!  This is a great recipe that we've made several times and love.  It's quick, simple and delicious!

Wednesday - leftovers!

Hope you all have a wonderful week!  Send me any new recipes you've tried lately!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Recipe for Success

... or at least a good night ...

A good friend + 

A favorite bottle of wine 

Delicious goat cheese with warm bread


Yummy dark chocolate

Friday, January 14, 2011

Seattle Bucket List

When J. was stationed in Mississippi, I had a million things I wanted to do in the South before he was stationed elsewhere.  We thought we'd have another year to get them done, but the Navy intervened.  So, while we went to Biloxi and Birmingham, we never made it to New Orleans, Memphis or Nashville.  I do not want that to be the case while we are stationed up here in the Pacific Northwest.  In an effort to (1) not forget everything on my list and (2) keep track of my progress, here is my Seattle "Bucket List":

1. Visit Portland, OR - September 19-22, 2010
2. Go to Woodinville Wine Country - March 12, 2011
3. Go to Yakima Wine Country - October 2011
4. Go Camping - July 2011
5. Hike around Mt. Rainier
6. Visit Scuttlebutt Brewery - February 5, 2011
7. Visit Red Hook Brewery - September 5, 2010 
8. Go kayaking - September 5, 2010
9. Bruch at Peso's 
10. Green Lake
11. Bon Vivant Wine Tours
12. Washington Park Arboretum 
13. Museum of Flight
14. Experience Music Project - January 17, 2011
15. Seattle Symphony
16. Cruise to Alaska
17. Woodland Park Zoo - March 2, 2012
18. Visit Leavenworth - October 28, 2010 and November 6, 2010
19. Go to an apple orchard
20. Pick pumpkins - October 16, 2010
21. Go to the top of Smith Tower - March 10, 2012
22. Visit San Juan Island - July 3, 2010 and September 3, 2010 
23. Visit Orcas Island  - September 18, 2010 
24. Visit Lopez Island 
25. Visit Pike Place Market - May 30, 2010 
26. Visit the first Starbucks - May 30, 2010
27. Visit the REI Flagship store - May 30, 2010
28. Eat at Umi Sake - March 11, 2012
29. Try Vietnamese - September 2011  
30. Hike around Mt. Baker - September 14, 2010 
31. Visit Vancouver - June 26-27, 2010
32. Go on the Underground Tour - September 4, 2010
33. Go whale watching (and see whales!) - September 18, 2010
34. See whales from Lime Kiln State Park  - September 3, 2010
35. Hike to the top of Mt. Constitution on Orcas Island
36. Visit Eastsound on Orcas Island
37. Hike Lake Serene
38. Hike to Bridal Veil Falls - September 30, 2010 
39. Eat Ivar's Clam Chowder! - August 30, 2010
40. Visit Mount Saint Helens
41. Go to Victoria, Vancouver Island - August 2011
42. Visit the Olympic Peninsula -
43. Visit Wallace Falls - November 2010
44. Hike Boulder River Trail
45. Ski Mt. Baker Ski Area - November, December and January :)
46. Ski Stevens Pass Ski Area - February 2011
47. See the Picasso exhibit at the Seattle Art Museum - January 6, 2011
48. Take advantage of First Thursdays (1/12)
49. Try Japonessa - July 2011
50. Visit the Fremont Troll - January 17, 2011
51. Ballard Locks - January 17, 2011
52. Kerry Park (aka the "postcard view" of Seattle - January 17, 2011
53. Go to the top of the Water Tower in Capitol Hill - January 19, 2011
54. Visit Gas Works Park - September 2011 & February 2012
55. Go to the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival - April 2011
56. Go on the Boeing Tour & visit the Future of Flight Museum
57. GET A JOB! - February 2011

I am sure the list will grow ... but I needed to get it down in one place so I can track my progress!  Is there anything you think I should add to my list?


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

What we're eating this week ...

I'm getting back on track with my meal planning and weekly meal plan posts.  J. was supposed to be gone in California this week doing some training, but the weather was crappy yesterday and his flight got cancelled.  So, I wasn't planning on having any "real" meals this week, but I've come up with a few that sound good ...

Monday - Mediterranean Salmon with couscous.  I think this looks amazing ... I love salmon.  I love feta.  I love pine nuts.  And I love couscous.  And it looks healthy.  It's a win.

Tuesday - Yellow Curry made with Trader Joe's yellow curry sauce.  As I've stated many times, I am always late to jump on the bandwagon.  I had been to Trader Joe's a few times here and there, but last week after finding this recipe I decided to go again and let me tell you, if you have a Trader Joe's in your area and you are not frequenting it, you are missing out.  I was sure everything was going to be overpriced and I would walk out of there spending a small fortune.  Not the case at all.  I only went for a few things and I don't plan to start doing my major grocery shopping at TJ's, but it's great for specialty items.  I got both their yellow and red curry sauce ... and they were $2.69 each.  Their gouda cheese was cheaper than the grocery price.  And their milk was the same price as the grocery.  I was very happy that I took the time to check it out!

Wednesday - Grilled cheese and tomato soup.  I've posted about this tomato soup before ... I don't usually eat tomato soup and I think this recipe is fabulous.  And who doesn't love grilled cheese?

Thursday - Cooking Light's Pasta e Fagioli.  I found this recipe while thumbing through Cooking Light's Italian cookbook.  And J. and I tried a white bean soup last week at Pinxto so I thought I would try making one.

I'm looking forward to this week's recipes ... everything looks good and I'm excited to try a couple of new recipes.  I even branched out and used a recipe finder other than Tasty Kitchen!  What are you all eating this week?  Any new recipes for me to try?

Saturday, January 8, 2011

First Thursdays

All of you Seattle-ites may already be in the know but I just recently learned of this ... on the first Thursday of each month, most of Seattle's museums offer free admission!  I think this is a fantastic program and a great way to see all of Seattle's museums on a budget.

Last night, J. and I took advantage of this fantastic program and went to the Seattle Art Museum.  Not only did we get free admission to the permanent collection, but we got half off of our tickets to see the Picasso exhibit.  We decided to make it a weekday "date night" and had dinner at a tapas place, Pinxto.  We had a Groupon for Pinxto from this past summer that was just begging to be used :)

Both Picasso and Pinxto were great.  It was incredible to me how many works that Picasso did over the years ... and the museum didn't even have every work he'd ever done.  We also were able to get an audio tour which was an added bonus -- it told the history behind several of his famous pieces and also gave some background on Picasso.  He was quite the womanizer.  My favorite display was a series of 9 photographs that showed his progress on "La Guernica."  It was so cool to see the progression.  I've looked all over the web and couldn't find an image of the 9 photographs, but here is the finished masterpiece:

Pinxto was a great find ... it's a tapas and cocktails bar in Belltown.  My only complaint is that their menu is kind of limited, I think it would be a great place to go for a happy hour drink and snack but trying to eat dinner there wound up being a little bit expensive.  That being said, everything we had was delicious and I will definitely be going back in the future.  My favorite things that we tried were the bacon wrapped dates and the chocolate mousse.  I'm getting hungry just thinking about them!  

I hope you all had a wonderful week and have a great weekend!  

Wednesday, January 5, 2011


It's my half birthday and as a gift, Jimmy John's gave me 12 loaves of bread.  And no, I am not joking.  I went to our local JJ's on my way home from "work" today to get a loaf of day old bread.  But, they were out.  So the very nice manager offered to give me a loaf of fresh bread for day old price ($0.50).  And then he offered to give me more.  Supposedly, they are only allowed to keep the bread for 4 hours.  So I said, "Sure I'd love some free bread," and he gave me a giant bag of bread.  And when I came home, I counted and there were 12 in there.  What I am going to do with 12 loaves of bread, I do not know, but I am not complaining!

Moral of the story = go to JJ's late in the day and score lots of free bread.

Other moral of the story = people should celebrate half birthdays!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


Do you set New Year's Resolutions?  Usually I set something small and forget about it by the end of January.  But, this year, I want to set goals and actually achieve them!  So here are some things I will be working on in 2011:

1.  Being more punctual.  I am ALWAYS late.  And it's not a good thing.  So I will be working on being on time or even early.  And I've actually been working on this for the past two weeks and it's going very well.

2.  Get a job!  I don't blog about it much because I try to keep the blog content positive, but my job search is not going as planned at all.  It's been extremely frustrating and stressful and I've come to the realization that it might be a while before I am a real life practicing lawyer.  And that's okay.  But, while I am waiting, I need to be working.  Even if that means doing something I don't want to do.  I applied for a few non-lawyer jobs in October and November and did not get a positive response, but I am going to try again.

3.  Get healthy.  I need to get in shape and start eating better.  And to do this, I'm going to pick a couple of 5K races to run.  And I'm going to do it with friends so I will HAVE to follow through.  My goal is to be in much better shape by the time hiking season comes around.

What are your resolutions for 2011?

Monday, January 3, 2011


Happy New Years Friends!  I hope that everyone had a wonderful holiday.  J. and I sure did.  We spent a week in Indianapolis visiting with friends and family and then headed to Louisville to spend Christmas with his family.  He stayed in Louisville for a few days and I flew to Houston with my sister to visit my dad's side of the family.  It was a great holiday but I am glad to be home!

I was sad to see 2010 come to an end ... it was a big year for us!  But I am really looking forward to what 2011 will bring.  Here's a look back at 2010:

January - J. and I welcomed 2010 in Chicago with our good friends (who got married this year!).  We had the BEST sushi I have ever eaten and spent a few days in the city.  We went to Las Vegas over Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend and had a wonderful time in Sin City.  We saw our first Cirque d'Soleil show, visited the Hoover Dam and enjoyed temperatures above freezing :)

February - I attended the Boilermaker Ball with some good friends (and fellow alums!)  Sadly, this is all I can remember about February 2010 and I don't have any pictures to prove I did anything else :)

I may or may not have worn this snuggie to the bar later that night ...

March - I added another state to my list - Utah.  I went skiing with some good friends in Park City and had an absolute blast.  We rented a house through VRBO ... it came with a hot tub and we spent all our nights eating, drinking and hot tubbing.  It was bliss.  I celebrated St. Patrick's Day in Chicago with L.Rae.  And I went on my last spring break ever (or at least until I have children) and visited my family in Houston.  Patman was finishing up some Air Force training in San Antonio and he drove through Houston, picked me up and we drove back to Indianapolis with a pit stop in Meridian to visit J.

Park City, UT

On the gondola

With the green river in Chicago

April - I found out I was moving to Washington State.  I quit my job :(  My mom and I traveled to Mississippi to watch J. get his wings and then I took my last round of law school finals (ever!)  And J. purchased my dream car because he's awesome like that!

May - I graduated from law school.  My roomie and I hosted a fabulous graduation party.  I ate lots and lots of yummy food from my favorite restaurants in Indy.  J. went to (and survived) SERE school.  We drove 3,000 miles across the United States, stopping in Louisville to visit his parents, Wichita to visit his sister, South Dakota to see Mt. Rushmore and Missoula, MT because that's where "A River Runs Through It" was filmed.  No that was not a joke.  We also made a detour in Nebraska to see "Carhenge" and in Wyoming to see Devil's Tower.

Carhenge, NE

Devil's Tower, WY

Addy & Lucy

Mt. Rushmore, SD

June - We lived in our apartment for two weeks with no furniture.  We had our cable and internet installed and our Wii was delivered, but we did not have a TV.  I started bar review classes and started studying for the bar.  J. started his very last training program.  We did some sightseeing around our new city and visited Vancouver with friends.

July - I had another birthday.  We visited the San Juan Islands.  I started my blog!  I took the bar exam.  That is about all that happened this month because every time I wasn't studying, I felt extremely guilty.

August - my life began again :)  We traveled to Sonoma and San Francisco and spent a wonderful weekend with friends ... we said good-bye to Patman and sent him to Afghanistan.  I spent another week in Houston with my family ... and my sister!  It was the first time I had seen her since I moved to the Pacific Northwest and it was also the first time I felt heat all summer.

September - we welcomed September with our very first set of visitors!  L.Rae and J2K came to visit over Labor Day weekend and we had a great time with them.  Shortly after they left, J.'s parents came to visit and we went whale watching!  I also met family friends in Portland and got to check another state off my list as well as catch-up with some old friends.  We packed a lot into three days and I can't wait to take J. back.

At the lavender farm

The Redhook Sampler

Mt. Baker

J. and his parents with the Growler

Whale watching!

VooDoo doughnuts!

October - we celebrated J.'s birthday (welcome to your mid-to-late twenties babe!) and then he flew off to spend the rest of the month in Key West!  I took my first trip back to Indianapolis and caught up with some good friends.  I also headed to Toledo to watch my best friend get married ... she had a beautiful wedding and it was SO MUCH FUN to catch up with her family.  I came back to Washington and met up with some bloggers at a cupcake decorating party!  So fun.  J. came home from Key West and my college roommates came to town to help us celebrate Halloween.  We had a great time catching up and exploring tourist traps.

Visiting my favorite bar with The Sister and Sara V.


Me and the Bride!

Carving pumpkins with my sister!


Celebrating Halloween with some favorites :)

At the gum wall in Seattle

November - my mother came to visit.  We celebrated Veteran's Day.  We went to Vancouver to see our favorite band, Ra Ra Riot, perform at the Commodore Ballroom.  We went to opening weekend at Mt. Baker and tried to get our ski legs back under us.  My sister came out to visit and spent Thanksgiving with us.  We had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday with our Navy friends in Burlington.

December - we went to our first Seahawks game and then we headed back to the Midwest to visit family for the holidays.  We returned on the 31st and celebrated the end of a fantastic year at home.

And in between all of those big events that stand out in my memory and are easy to recall ... we had small moments that I loved even more.  We spent time decorating our first "home."  We cuddled with our dogs.  We spent countless nights with friends ... hanging out, having family dinners and exploring our new city.  Happy 2011!