Flight Delays and Talking Squirrels

Sunday is always the worst day of the week for me.  It’s my time to start freaking out about the upcoming 7 days for no apparent reason.  If there’s one thing I’m good at, it’s freaking out.

Today, we get to add “flight delay” to the normal Sunday Syndrome, and throw in a short layover for a connecting flight I’d prefer not to miss.

Yey!….

letpretendthisneverhappened31But, in an effort to put a positive spin on the unfortunate and uninteresting turn of events, I have a great book to keep me company: Jenny Lawson’s Let’s Pretend this Never Happened.  Definitely worth checking out if you’re into sarcastic, irreverent, self-deprecating wit.  Or talking squirrels. Or paralyzing anxiety disorders.  All are featured prominently.   Take a peek at her blog.  Love her.

Pan Dulce

There are plenty of things to love about Mexican culture.  But one of the best has got to be the bakeries.

 

Cousin Novara found her wedding dress yesterday.  Woot!  So, of course we had to celebrate.  Right after the bridal place, we shot on over to El Bolillo Bakery in Houston to pick up two bags of  tasty treats… Mexican wedding cookies, empanadas, and my fav… pan dulce.  (And of course, all of this for a whopping nine bucks.  I love Mexican bakeries.)

Brought me back to when we went on grade school fields trips to Lopez Bakery on Mitchell Street in Milwaukee.  Senora Trojan hooked us up with a private tour of the place and all the galletas we could eat.  They were so good and crumbly…. hot pink crumbs of sugar would be stuck to our cheeks on the bus ride home.  Yum yum yum.

Whether you’re in the Midwest, or in the great “nation” of Texas… find yourself a Mexican bakery and dig in.

Photo Challenge: Half & Half

In an effort to flex my photography muscles, I’m going to start participating in The Daily Post’s Photo Challenge.  Feel free to join the party.

This week….

Half & Half

This week, share an image that has two clear halves, literally or figuratively. You could focus on composition…and take a photo with an explicit dividing line (either vertical, horizontal, or diagonal). Or take the theme in other directions: zoom in on a pair of objects that together form a whole. Show two people whose demeanor or personality complement each other. Or bring into balance two opposing visual elements — light and dark, color and its absence, sharp focus juxtaposed with blurriness.

First World Problems: Novocaine

Today I had the privilege of going to the dentist for the 3rd time in three weeks.  Yes.  Third Time.  Three Weeks.  Don’t hide it – you wish you were me.

But for serious. I moved six years ago and just now got around to finding a dentist in my “new” city.  Six years …. six lovely cavities.  Gross.

As I was reclined in the chair – singing 99-bottles-of-beer to distract myself from the whir of the dentists’ tools, the vibration of my jaw, and the ridiculous sensation that my tongue was wearing clown shoes – I realized that I truly was privileged to be in such a state.

I am blessed to be born in a time and place where I only have to experience mild discomfort in a hygienic environment as a seasoned professional cleans the teeth I chose to not adequately clean myself.

My irritation at the pinch of Novocaine is what we call a First World Problem.

My other First World Problems of the day:

  • Waking up groggy after staying up too late watching HBO on my tablet.
  • Having a slow internet connection because too many devices are connected to the wireless.
  • Tripping over my shoes because they won’t all fit in my closet.
  • Not having a big enough plate for all the food from the free lunch at work.  (Yes, that happened.  Today.)

Perspective is everything.

So, what were your First World Problems?

How We Cooked Colin

garlic herb chicken on the grill

Last night we had the pleasure of cooking one of the Colins’… the chickens we bought over at the Johnsons‘ farm.  (Read up on how we met Colin here.)

A quick Google search on whole rotisserie chickens revealed a cornucopia of options; we decided to keep it nice and simple with a garlic and herb number, modified a bit to use up what we had on hand.  Namely, vast amounts of garlic.

I was responsible for firing up the grill.  Yoder Husband did the heavy lifting.  And Yoder Kitty tried to get in on the action.  Who can blame him?  Delish.

Yoder Kitty and Colin

Grilled Garlic and Herb Chicken

Stuff We Used

  • 1 whole chicken (3-4 pounds)
  • bulb of garlic
  • a few sprigs of thyme
  • a few sprigs of oregano
  • 2 Tablespoons paprika
  • 2 Tablespoons garlic powder
  • some ground black pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons butter (melted)
  • extra thyme and oregano for garnish

Stuff We Did

  1. Rinse Colin the chicken and pat dry.
  2. Put all the garlic cloves and half of the herbs underneath the skin of the breasts.  Put the rest of the herbs in the body cavity (yeah.. I said it.  Body Cavity.)
  3. Dry rub the bird with 1 T of paprika, 1 T of onion powder, ground black pepper
  4. Let him hang out in the fridge for a few hours, or overnight
  5. When you’re ready to get cooking, pre-heat the grill.
  6. Make a sauce with the 2 T melted butter, 1 T paprika, and 1 T onion powder.  Set aside.
  7. Butterfly the bird (cut him in half, up the spine) and brush him with the sauce from step 6.  Garnish with some extra thyme and oregano.
  8. Place the bird on grill and put the lid on.  Grill for about 15 minutes per side.
  9. When he’s done, take him off the grill and let him rest for a few minutes.
  10. Claim the drumsticks as your own and mow down.

My Blogging Booster-Shot

I have realized that I’ve had this blog since May, and only produced five posts.  Two of which were re-posts… sad.

I didn’t start with any direction or vision for my blog – another irresponsible act – but instead started just so I could have something creative in my life.  And of course, without a purpose to my writing, my creative muscles have atrophied. I need a blogging booster-shot!

So, I challenge myself to 100 days of blogging!

100 day blog challenge - landscape

100 posts in 100 days.  Starting now.

And because creativity works best when there are some constraints…

The Rules:

  1. I must post something every day for the next 100 days.
  2. At least 75% of my posts must be my own original content.  Which means those tempting, “lazy,” reposts can only happen once a week.
  3. The challenge will run from July 20th through October 28th… coincidentally the day before my 31st birthday. (More on that significance later.)

The Goals:

  • Define a vision and theme for my content.  What am I really trying to say, here?
  • Structure my long-term posting schedule.  How many days a week… Do I have a theme per day…?
  • Learn some new blogging skills… customizing my page; mastering some graphic design principles…things beyond the act of writing.
  • I wish I could say “find my writing voice,” but that seems like it’s always going to be a work in progress.  What about… improve my writing voice?  Too vague?  I really have no where to go but up in that department.  How about so long as my voice is true to myself, we’ll call it good?  I guarantee I will experiment along the way, but if by the end of these few months I can read my posts and see myself in them, I’ll be happy.

So there we have it.  Gauntlet thrown. Adventure awaits!

His name was Colin.

Today, Yoder Husband and I headed over to Johnson Heritage Farms to pick up some chicken.  A lot of chicken.  Local, organic, free-range(ish), certified USDA chicken.

This was all very Portlandian.  We were totally the sketch where Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein badger their poor waitress into the history of the chicken they’re about to order…whose name was Colin…and are compelled to get the full biography on Colin, review his diet, look over his papers, and meet the fcking farmer who raised him.

Yep – that was us.

Now, Yoder Husband and I are not really known for latching on to a specific philosophy about where our food comes from or what it contains.  Irresponsible?  Probably.  Lazy?  Definitely.  It’s not that we don’t know the implications of not buying local, organic, blah blah blah.  We just never really made it a priority.  And – honestly – there are enough people out there waving their holier-than-thou banners when it comes to food choices, being all judgey and all “I see your vegan quinoa salad and raise you a raw gluten-free brownie with chia seeds.” Irritating.  And Douche-y.  So, I actually avoid the whole responsible food conversation at all costs.

But here I am writing a post about visiting a local farm where I met and bought a boat-load of responsibly raised chickens.  Yes – I am a walking contradiction in most facets of my life (Just ask Husband, who I yell at for not putting away his socks as I trip over a pile of my own shoes and week-old gym clothes…)

Anywho.

So, at the lovely Johnson estate, we got a tour of the farm, met the chickens and turkeys we’d be knoshing on later, along with the farmers’ pet goat (Penny – adorable), and learned that the only reason the birds had a fence around them was to save them from the badgers and foxes that liked to murder them in the middle of the night.  (Hence, the “ish” in the aforementioned “free-range.”)   I do have to admit, it was kind of awesome being able to see the whole chicken process start to finish.  It takes out that weird moment when slicing open a package of Gold’N’Plump, wondering what the hell was pumped into these chicken breasts to make them so huge.  (Seriously, have you noticed that?  The size is downright freakish.)

I guess the point is that Jenny, the farmer, was awesome.  Penny, the goat, was adorable.  And it was easy-peasy to pick up 60 pounds of delicious chicken for a completely reasonable cost.  I can’t wait to eat Colin.