Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas Recap

Bill thought I should post this picture due to the range of emotions. Don't think I'm ungrateful. I'm holding a present from Bill's parents, but I was utterly confused when I opened up the package and found 2 of the exact same c.d. (that I really really wanted) (see confusion on my face). Bill's mom on the other hand was heartily laughing (see laughing woman on right side) because of the 2 c.ds. When she ordered the c.d, she didn't realize she already had one copy in her cart, thus she bought 2. She wasn't expecting Bill to wrap them both.
But as you can see, I'm not ungrateful, I was very happy and excited.

The big hit of Christmas this year was Rock Band. We love it! We have played it every day. I'll tell you what, my favorite part of Christmas this year was hearing Bill's mom singing along to Weezer and other such bands.
Hope you all had a very Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

love/hate relationship with Chicago, part III

This is totally me. Just kidding, I wish it were. Did I mention that we are staying in Chicago for Christmas. Did I also mention that it has been snowing, well you know the weather has sucked which equals snow and cold. But normally, I really like snow because: snow + mountains = skiing. skiing=ecstasy. Why do I live in a state that has the elevation of a pancake? I don't know what we were thinking when we came here. All I have to say is, I really want to ski, and I'm just feeling sorry for myself.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Love hate relaitonship with Chicago, Part II

shovel, hat
I got this picture from flicker, it isn't of my hood, but it works.

Are we tired of this topic yet? I sure am. But still, it haunts me. This morning, I went out to go to the gym at 6 am - to be at the gym by 6:15. Bill warned me that the car would take a lot of work. So I go out there back up a bit and drive forward. I think I'm good to go, so I turn my wheel to get onto the road, when I get stuck. My tires are spinning and there is a huge wedge of snow/ice touching the undercarriage of my car. I got out of the car and hammered away at the ice with my ice scraper and would then try to weasel my way out. I worked at it for 30 mins, then I gave up. I hate you Chicago. Why can't you salt or plow the roads.....................ever. I guess you just don't care about the southside.
Indoor parking is looking better and better. I'm accepting donations.

P.S. it was -5 out this morning and the doorman said 4 other cars were stuck as well.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Do you see what I see

Do you see what I see?
Lets look from another angle. Do you see it now?
Okay, here is a close up.
Here is a look at what happens to my Christmas tree everyday. He shmushes down the branches where he sits in the tree, and pulls the ornaments off.
He is a little weasel.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Bill the house spouse

This is Bill my husband. Bill is also my little house wife, I guess house spouse might be more appropriate. Though he has worked hard this semester, he has had a lot of free time. So he goes to class everyday and then comes home to study and chill. But during the day he also does wifely things. He does things like dust, clean out the litter box, take out the trash, unload the dishwasher etc*. He is nice like that. He also runs errands so that come Saturday, I don't have to run all over Chicagoland in order to get groceries for the week. He makes all the trips to Costco to get milk and cheese, you know, the necessities. One day while at Costco, he ran into a friend from the ward. She was there with her baby (she is a stay at home mom (SAHM for those of you who like abbreviations)). Bill and the friend chatted for a minute, and the friend said jokingly "next time we should carpool to Costco." And that was when Bill realize that he is a house spouse. Too bad he'll only be a house spouse for a 1 more year.
So don't mess with the house spouse, I know your all jealous anyway.

*he refuses to wear cute aprons or carry cute hand bags. How boring.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Biggest Loser

I hate you Vicki and I've never been so happy that you lost.
But I love that Ed made it into the final by an 86% vote.

Monday, December 15, 2008

my love hate relationship with chicago

Courtesy of idle America at
This might as well be my car.

I have a love hate relationship with Chicago. In the spring, summer and fall, I LOVE Chicago. But come winter, all allegiance to this "great" city sinks like a rock. This morning, I woke up early to go swimming with a friend from church. I woke up multiple times due to my fe-lion friend and in anticipation of my alarm. But every time I woke up, I heard a horrific wind combined with freezing rain. So when I made it out to my car this morning, I found my car to be covered with a solid sheet of ice. I reconsidered going swimming. I mean it was cold enough that one foot out the door caused your sinuses to ache. I also reconsidered going swimming because that involves squeezing myself back into one of my swimsuits from high school. (as much as I wish I were the same old me from high school, I'm not, and I always sized down my suits too) high school swimsuit + 2 sizes smaller than normal size + 7+ years = bad idea.
But with frost bite and a bit of sliding around the roads, I made it to the pool. And I swam my little out of shape heart out. It felt good, and I got a good whooping too.
Besides, I need to get in shape, marathon season is just around the corner.
So moral of the story, only live in Chicago during spring, summer, and fall, because winter SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Good Food Friday

Last night I hosted book club. We read The Chosen by Chaim Potak. I love this book, if you haven't read it, you should. Anyway, I felt like I needed to provide a treat that would coincide with the theme of the book, so I search the internet and found this.

Ashkenazic Sour Cream Coffee Cake

Streusel Topping:
  • 1/2 cup granulated or brown sugar, or 1/4 cup each
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg or cloves (optional)
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter or margarine, softened
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts or pecans, grated coconut, golden raisins, or chocolate chips, or 1 cup any combination (optional)

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon double-acting baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 cup granulated or brown sugar or 1/2 cup each
  • 4 large egg yolks, or 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream or plain yogurt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest (optional)

Glaze (optional):
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons milk or water


1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (325°F if using a glass pan). Grease one 9-inch square pan,9-inch Bundt or tube pan, or 9-inch springform pan. Line with parchment or waxed paper, grease again, and dust with flour.

2. To make the streusel: Combine the sugar, flour, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg if using. Cut in the butter to resemble coarse crumbs. If desired, stir in the nuts.

3. To make the batter: Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a large bowl, beat the butter until smooth, about 1 minute. Gradually add the sugar and beat until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Beat in the egg yolks, one at a time. Blend in the sour cream, vanilla, and zest if using. Stir in the flour mixture.

4. Spread half of the batter in the prepared pan. Sprinkle with half of the streusel. Carefully cover with the remaining batter and sprinkle with the remaining streusel.

5. Bake until the cake is golden and pulls away from the sides of the pan, about 50 minutes. Set on a rack and let cool in the pan for at least 15 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature. Wrap the kuchen in plastic and store at room temperature for up to 2 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

6. To make the glaze if using: Combine all the glaze ingredients, stirring until smooth and of pouring consistency. Drizzle over the cake and let stand until set.

When baking and storing a cake containing acidic ingredients such as sour cream in an aluminum pan, line the bottom with parchment paper to prevent the juices from reacting with the aluminum and creating a metallic flavor.

Single-Layer Coffee Cake:
Spread all the batter in a 13-by-9-inch pan, sprinkle with all of the topping, and bake for 30 to 35 minutes.

Fruit-Filled Coffee Cake:
After adding the middle layer of streusel, top with 1 cup peeled, cored, and thickly sliced cooking apples, 1 cup peeled, pitted, and sliced peaches, or 1 cup pitted cherries, blueberries, blackberries, or raspberries.

Cheese Coffee Cake:
Combine 8 ounces softened cream cheese, 1/4 cup sugar, 1 large egg, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Spread over the top of the batter, leaving a 1-inch border on all sides. If desired, spread 1/2 cup melted blueberry, cherry, raspberry, or strawberry preserves or pie filling over the cheese mixture. Sprinkle with the streusel.

So I just made the basic recipe and it was delightful. Chanukah is starting in a week, ( you can even make it kosher for Passover)!
Try it, you'll like it!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

My Birthday

It was my birthday yesterday. I'm old. We celebrated all weekend long. I made a 3 layer cake, bought some candles, and made Bill sing happy birthday to me. I'm so mean. But it was my birthday, so I had a free pass to do what ever I want.
I say birthday weekend because we opened presents on Saturday. You know, finals are coming up, so Bill is busy. But he insisted we celebrate on Saturday. So we woke up on Saturday and opened presents. He gave me a box with air fresheners and lint rollers.
air fresheners + lint rollers = cat
We celebrated on Saturday so I could pick out a cat.
Here he is, his name is Cassius (Caius Cassius Longinus) or just Cass. He is 4 months old and very affectionate. He likes to relax in your arms (see below)
He also has spots on his tummy, like a leopard. Why is it feline? He is definitely a fe-lion.

Thanks for the great surprise, Bill!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Things I should have known

Picture circa 2005

During my sophomore year of college, my roommate Vanessa was engaged. Our bishop was awesome, he provided them with a list of questions to ask each other so that they would better know and understand one another. I thought that the list was a great idea and wished that the bishop in our ward when we were engaged would have done the same. But lo and behold, he did no such thing. Well he kind of did, he told us "YOU MUST FIGURE OUT YOUR CHRISTMAS TRADITIONS" such as a star or angel on the top of the tree. That was it.
And three plus years later, I still wish we would have had a list because apparently I married a stranger. Tonight while heating up leftovers from thanksgiving, I pulled out the can of jellied cranberry sauce. I LOVE jellied cranberry sauce from a can!
So I'm standing in the kitchen eating cranberry sauce out of a can (with a spoon, I'm not a heathen), and I say "Bill, don't you love cranberry sauce from a can?"
Bill - " (silence) ."
I said again, but louder "Don't you love cranberry sauce from a can...........Bill?"
Bill "no I don't"

Who is this man, how did I marry someone who doesn't like cranberry sauce from a can, ridges and all? I'll keep him, but this definitely should have been disclosed during the dating period.

So, has your significant other surprised you with any news since you've been together?

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Martha Stewart

Last night as I was getting ready for bed, I was watching Martha Stewart's Holiday Special. It was disturbing. She made eggnog, which I really like, until I saw what goes into eggnog. Here is the recipe


So what I realized was eggnog is really bad for you. Whole milk, heavy cream, loads of sugar. Yowza.
I also realized that Martha is a drunkard. Why else would you add all this hard liquor to something so good and pure.