Archive for December 2009

new years resolutions?

December 31, 2009

Every year on January 1st I declare my new years resolutions to everyone around me.  “I want to exercise” or “I want to save a lot of money” is something that I always come up with, and typically I will throw a few more in there to show that I actually did put some thought into it. 

On that very same year, once December 30th rolls around, I try to remember what my new years resolutions were and I typically cannot remember.  The timespan is simply too long for me to recall what I initially planned to do for the year let alone stay motivated to complete any of it.  New years resolutions for me are useless, forgotten, and lost throughout the year.

This year I plan on trying something new.  Monthly resolutions.  One month is short enough to keep me motivated and long enough for me to achieve something.  And lets not forget that after one month my chances of remembering what I set out to do in the first place are greatly increased.

I suppose that if I must have a new years resolution, it will be this:  make monthly resolutions.

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2009 has been a learning experience

December 30, 2009

So here we go.. a list of 2009 things that I have learned throughout 2009!!

Just kidding… 2009 is a little much.  Instead, I will take out the 0’s and reduce the list to 29 things I have learned throughout the year.

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smile

December 29, 2009

I am currently working on compiling my list of New Years Resolutions, and I thought I would take this opporunity to share one of my favorite songs with everyone. 

Charlie Chaplin composed the music to the song “Smile” for Modern Times which was released in 1936.   The music was used in the final scene of Modern Times as Charlie and his costar are headed toward a new life, and Charlie points to the corners of his mouth to show that she should smile.   The lyrics were added in 1954 and were originally recorded by Nat King Cole, although many different artists have recorded it over the years (including Michael Jackson, Barbara Streisand, Judy Garland, and many others). 

I love the song because, to be frank, it’s not overly complicated.  It’s a simple melody and the message is very clear.  Just smile.

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new years eve in minneapolis

December 28, 2009

When I was in high school, I remember my new years at home more than the new years celebrations I joined when I actually went out.  One year I promised my mom I would stay at home with her, and then she went to bed.  I bought my friend Donald legos that year (but hadn’t given them to him yet) and so I built lego people to sit on the couch with me.  Honestly, I think that is the most memorable new years eve I have ever had.  Weird?  Yes.  Unique and memorable for all the wrong reasons?  Also yes.

Another year, after my family and I watched the ball drop on tv, we went outside and banged on pots and pans.  My stepdad told me that was a tradition he grew up with in New York.  I thought we were going to get arrested for disturbing the peace or something.

 I am remembering details of other new years celebrations the more I think about it, but not enough to mention here.  I have had a lot of fun with friends over the years, but it’s funny how those boring nights in the comfort of my own home are what stick out in my memory. 

This year, I thought about scheduling a trip to Las Vegas.  How amazing would it be to fly in to Las Vegas on New Years Eve, have the time of my life, and fly back immediately after on the morning of New Years.  Unfortunately, the flights are looking pretty full and I don’t think I will be able to schedule it successfully since I am required to fly standby.  Plus, I don’t really want to spend the money to board Prandtl for the weekend (she’s not cheap).  Also, lets be honest, I probably wouldn’t remember much of my visit there… for the obvious reasons.

So instead it looks like Dan and I will be staying in the Twin Cities.  This year, Brit’s Pub is having a New Years party!  I am honestly really excited – apparently Brit’s Pub is ” kind of a big deal” around here and are known for their World Cup celebrations as well as the sweet lawn bowling on the roof.  Even though it’s too cold to go outside on the roof, I plan on dancing, meeting some strangers, and having the time of my life.  But I am sure that while I’m out running around downtown, I will be kind of missing a quiet night at home.

What will you be doing for New Years?

i love the snow!

December 24, 2009

I’m lucky enough to be in Minnesota right now while this “midwest winter storm” is rolling through.  Snow is everywhere!  We had about 4 inches last night, we are expecting about 6 tonight, and then another 4 tomorrow during the day.

I live in Lowertown Saint Paul near Mears Park.  I took my dog outside about an hour ago and got some pictures on my phone.

I love snow!

yes, virginia, there is a santa claus

December 24, 2009

Perhaps you have seen this before as it is one of the most reprinted newspaper editorials.  On September 21, 1897, an eight year old named Virginia wrote to a newspaper called The Sun asking if Santa was real.  Francis Pharcellus Church posted the following: 

Original article posted from the Newseum, Arlington, VA

 

So very true.  Merry Christmas.

who fails at deviled eggs?

December 21, 2009

I have a love/hate relationship with company potlucks.  The great part is that there is food to my heart’s content, a huge variety of different things is available to me all at once, and, of course, it’s free.  Usually there is at least one dish that blows all of the rest away, and I eat plates and plates of it because I am a bit of a glutton.  The difficult part (for me) is the pressure to prepare a food that other people will want to eat.  I am always nervous that I will bring the one food that nobody ate.  And then, on my way out the door that evening, I will have to pick up my full platter and carry it home.  On my way, everyone will see that I was the one that brought the “____” that nobody liked and my reputation will be stained until the day that I die.

To avoid that very situation, I kept it simple this year and stuck with deviled eggs.  Everyone likes those, right?  I picked up 2.5 dozen eggs and spent over an hour peeling them because I forgot to put some salt into the boiling water, and now my shoulders and back are killing me since I was hunched over for so long.  Then, after mixing all of the ingredients, I discovered that I poured in a little too much salt.  Needless to say, this year I won’t be bringing that really good plate of food… but I figure that enough people like deviled eggs so they will at least give them a shot. 

I had planned to buy a pastry bag and decorating tip so I would at least have looks going for me, but my local grocer did not have the pastry bags and I didn’t have time to wander around another store in search of them.  I used a plastic bag instead and cut off the tip, and while it still looks acceptable, it’s not pretty by anybody’s standards.

 

While I am confident that my deviled eggs will be disappointing to many, because I slaved away at peeling all of those for over an hour, I don’t really care that much.  My sweat and tears are in those eggs.  Best of all, I bought two disposable trays so that I don’t have to pick them up afterward and nobody can find out that it was me who destroyed them. 

To be honest, I do think I’m being a little dramatic about this whole thing.  I will probably eat a few myself tomorrow. I’m just so disappointed that all of that salt fell in and they’re not perfect.  Deviled eggs are not hard to make and ending up with a bad tasting batch of deviled eggs is almost impossible.  I feel like, because the eggs are a little too salty, I’ve failed.  I am kind of a perfectionist.  Plus… I tried really, really hard on them.

Anyway, as far as my recipe goes, when this is made correctly it is my favorite version of deviled eggs.  I like to keep it simple and keep relish and jalapenos and practically everything else out of there.  I love eggs and prefer to keep this recipe basic.  I pretty much always do a google search for the recipe that Pinch My Salt has posted.

6 eggs, hard cooked and peeled
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon yellow mustard
3/4 teaspoon white wine vinegar
pinch of salt (optional)
fresh ground black pepper (optional)
smoked paparika (optional)

If you visit her site, you can see that her deviled eggs look to be a lot more presentable than mine.  Maybe next time I’ll have something a little more worthy, but at least it looks better than the Gingerbread house that Dan and I (kind of) put together.