Wednesday, January 30, 2008

100 Things, Cont'd...

10. One of my favorite foods in the world are saltine crackers. I love them. When I was pregnant, I would go through a sleeve a day. Actually, I'm eating some as I'm typing this!

11. I am a super badass at Cryptoquips. Cryptoquip is a substitution cipher where one letter stands for another. Like if A equals T, then A will equal T throughout the puzzle. I love them! For Christmas last year, my little brother found 4 cryptoquip books and I basically holed myself up for months finishing them! I need more...

12. I am really non-confrontational. I have absolutely no backbone. (Except for glorious today. That's a story for another day when I am not at my job anymore. Or over a few drinks)

13. Nothing irks me more than when people cannot spell! I totally understand a typo here and there, but for adults to not know the difference between "to", "too" and "two" and there/their is ridiculous.

14. I can't stand spit or spit sounds. It's all I can do from going batshit freakout mode when Will gives me kisses. He grabs my face, opens his mouth, sticks out his tongue and licks my face for a few seconds. It's very odd. I feel so bad about it but there's just so much saliva! Don't even get me started on when Jenny "tends" to her lady parts.

15. Will peed on me tonight. I was holding him, about to put him in the bathtub and he peed all over me. Then he cried because I startled him. Oops.

16. You know how most couples have their "list"? Like, the list of celebrities (or celebrity) that you can have no strings attached sex with but it doesn't matter because it'll never happen? Mine is Ed Harris. Don't ask me why. Chris is lame and unoriginal, his is Britney Spears but he has not clarified whether he means Crazy Britney or Britney circa 2000. That's a little scary.

17. My husband has a little man-crush on Matt Damon. It's just another thing that we have in common.

This is tough...

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The Baby Dilemma

You know when you start dating someone, and everyone asks "So, when is he going to pop the question?" Then, the second that you say "I do" people start asking "When are you having babies?". You have a baby, and almost immediately the next, most dreaded question comes... "When are you having another baby?" The first time I heard that last question was a week or two after Will was born, and I don't think that I've ever felt a stronger urge to reach out and strangle someone in my life.

When we first had Will, it was all about just trying to keep our lives together on 4 hours of sleep (on a good day), trying to figure out if the baby is hungry, gassy, tired, poopy or just plain pissed off about having been yanked out of his cozy womb. For the first 5 weeks I couldn't sleep in bed with my husband because every time I would try to get up or lay down, that fun new four inch scar on my abdomen felt like it was going to rip open.

At the time I kept thinking "There seems to be no end in sight and you want me to tell you when we're going to do it again? Fat chance!"

In case you didn't know, nature plays this cruel trick on you and has a way of making you forget about all of those sleepless nights, the times that you were simultaneously covered in runny, yellow super poop and milk spit up, then being peed on, and somehow makes you only remember the times when the precious baby snuggled up on your chest and just slept, or cooed. You only remember the first (very rewarding) smile, but you temporarily forget about all the trouble you had trying to get them to stop shrieking.

Well, Chris and I have always known that we want more than one kid. He is an only child and doesn't want Will to be an only child. I'm cool with this, but how do you know that you're ready to have another one? We are so content with having just Will right now, I just can't imagine going through this again but at the same time I sort of want to... ARGH, why are they so darn cute?

We keep talking about maybe trying late this summer. Or maybe next summer. I'm shallow, so I want a spring baby because they have cuter clothing options. Also, I would go through the worst of the pregnancy in mild weather instead of having to endure another sweaty, asscrack hot summer without a margarita to sip on.

That, and I will be in a friend's wedding in April and have already bought my super cute bridesmaid dress so I'll be starving myself skinny for the next 2 months. (Speaking of, do any of my GMAT studying housewife friends want to run with me on my lunch break around Town Lake? Hmmm?)

Anyway, I'm torn.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Beef Stew and a Day Off

I decided that in this shitty weather, I needed a nice, hearty dish that wasn't going to give me a sneak peek of my insides out like Chris' chili did last weekend. I tell you, he's not allowed near a stove anymore. Anyway, today I made Beef Stew for the first time. It's weird that I'd never made it before since it's such a comfort food staple, but I decided to give it a try. I used a combination of different recipes that I found on various sites, and it turned out pretty decent!

Here's what I came up with:

Although in real life it looks a lot less like throw up than it does in this picture.

Beef Stew:

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch pieces (I found the cubed stew meat at the grocery store, but you can buy a big piece of chuck and trim it really well)
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
4 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 cups beef broth/stock, at room temperature
1/2 cup red wine
3 tablespoons tomato paste
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
2 bay leaves
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
1 pound small red potatoes, quartered
2 bell peppers, coarsley chopped
1 cup carrots, sliced about 1/2 inch thick
1 large very coarsly chopped onion
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley leaves

Heat a large dutch oven over medium high heat, and pour in olive oil. Season meat with salt and pepper and add to the pan in batches. I think that I only had 2 batches for this recipe. Brown on each side, about 2 minutes per side. Set meat aside.

Add onions, garlic and bell pepper to the oil and cook until browned and fragrant. Add the tomato paste and incorporate. Add the meat back into the pot, stir into the veggies and sprinkle with the flour. Stir for a few minutes to lightly brown the flour, you're almost making a roux but not quite. Add the stock/broth, wine and bring to a simmer. Add the herbs, allspice and bay leaves. Stir and simmer for about an hour or until the beef is sort of tender.

Add the potatoes and carrots, stir and simmer for an hour or hour and a half to make sure that the potatoes and carrots are soft and cooked through.

Serve with rice or mashed potatoes. I like to add a little Tabasco or Pickapeppa sauce, Chris likes to add a little bit of vinegar but it's totally up to you.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

100 Things About Me....

Since I'm exhausted all the time now, I am totally lacking in the originality department. I have decided copy Mel and jot down 100 things about me. What I really want to do is to complain about work, but I'll spare you for many many reasons.

1. My favorite smells in the world are fresh chopped parsley and garlic cooking in olive oil. It brings back memories of helping my Dad and Grandma make meatballs. I make up excuses to cook with these ingredients, and Chris is none the wiser. Mostly because it saves him from having to cook.

2. I would give my left foot to move back to New Orleans. Why? The roads suck ass, the people aren't nearly as nice as Texans, it can be scary as shit, dumbasses crowd the Quarter covered in beads even when it's not Mardi Gras (one of many pet peeves) but if you ask anyone from the city, they'd all tell you that there's absolutely nothing like it. The food, the people, the oak trees, the houses... it's all home. Plus, I leaving a bar at 3am and pouring my beer into a to go cup to take with me. I almost cried last time we went to the Quarter and I heard some kid tell an unsuspecting tourist "Betcha I can tell you where you got dem shoes!"

3. There are 5 foods that I don't like. Mushrooms, fresh tomatoes, ranch dressing, cokes and mayonnaise. Bacon used to be on the list, but being pregnant turned me into a bacon lover but only when it's by itself. I don't like when bacon is mixed with anything, like in a salad, sandwich, taco, etc.. Don't like.

4. I love that I can still look at Chris and think "Wow, I love that guy."

5. I could hold Will forever if he'd let me. Now that he's a big boy it's a rare moment, but I love it when he cuddles with me and just rests his big pumpkin head on my shoulder. It's the sweetest feeling in the world.

6. I love grocery shopping with a cup of coffee and no purpose. I could roam around a grocery store forever just looking around at all of these random ingredients that I never even knew existed. (Especially in the downtown Whole Foods!)

7. I like to bake, but don't have the time for it right now. I have tons of baking, cake decorating and chocolate books just sitting around, collecting dust. I used to be really into it, and would love to pick it up again. And I make a mean lemon curd.

8. I suck ass at decorating. It's horrible. I'm married to a guy who is the same way, so we live in a house full of blank, white walls that are just screaming for attention. He's given me free reign for the guest bedroom and I either come up with blanks or have to completely copy some random Pottery Barn room. Same with poor Will's nursery. It's still half done because I have no idea what to put on the walls.

9. I have a love/hate relationship with the Food Network. I love watching these cooks and chefs make fantastic meals, learning new techniques, etc.. but every single time I see one of them take a bite I want to bury my head under a pillow and scream. I hate the sound of people chewing, but more so when Paula Deen takes a bite. She always talks with her mouth full of butter, and there is always a little bit of food that threatens to come out and stick to the camera. And the day that that happens? I'm gonna have to go all jihad on her fried food eating ass.

Just saying...

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

The Druncan Diaries

Well, here I am again. Melek and Femme au Foyer have inspired me to blog again. I cannot promise that I have anything interesting to write about, but I'll try my damndest! Since I have so little free time, the few hours that I have are usually spent watching "Best Week Ever" and the new season of "Rock of Love" instead of doing something productive, such as reading, cleaning or improving the constant headache that is our house.