Thursday, June 30, 2011

Day 181: June 30, 2011

I don't know what is growing in this city this year, but it is making me sneeze. At all hours of the night. I'm pretty sure it has something to do with the torrential rain we had this Winter and Spring.  Whatever the culprit, the sneezes are making me crazy. I have a nightly date with the box of tissues that lasts about twenty minutes before I can fall back asleep. 
Last night there was not one sneeze, sniffle, or tickle! Yippee!

Today I am thankful for one allergy-free night. 

I'll take what I can get. 

Day 180: June 29, 2011

Today I'm thankful for naps on the couch.

For some reason these sleeps are so much sweeter. And clearly needed if I'm falling asleep in my living room. 

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Day 179: June 28, 2011

Today I'm thankful for people who say things like, "Emily, you look skinnier!"

Even if I'm exactly the same size that I was yesterday, last month, and in my Freshman year of High school. 
 Notes to self: 
Give skinny compliment to people often. 
Wear today's pants frequently. 

Day 178: June 27, 2011

Today I'm thankful to have a long weekend to look forward to! 

Mondays are a whole lot more fun when there is an end in sight. I hate to wish any of my days away, but I sure am excited for my Fourth of July weekend plans!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Day 177: June 26, 2011

Today I am thankful for unintentional PRIDE.

Today marks the end of Gay Pride week in San Francisco. Just after midnight this morning, Nick and I found ourselves in the thick of the action...totally by accident. And it was amazing. AMAZING. Seriously.

Sometimes I think that San Francisco's public transportation system hates me. Last night we walked into the train station to see that our train was due to arrive in fifty-nine minutes. Fifty-nine minutes? The city is seven miles long- I could walk home in less than fifty-nine minutes!

But now I know it was fate. I was meant to see this thing called PRIDE in the heart of the Castro.
After rearranging our route as to not wait for an hour, we hopped on a train with destination Market Street and Castro. We were smashed against a girl in a mini skirt, crazy blonde wig, and Mr. Potato Head Pink glasses. The train lurched to a start, and then the party started! I have never enjoyed a MUNI ride so thoroughly!

As we surfaced from the underground station at Castro Street, I could hear a rumbling getting louder and louder as we climbed the steps. And then we were surrounded. I don't know that I've ever seen such a crowd. The streets were blocked off and the neighborhood was transformed into a nightclub of sorts. There was  a band playing, everyone was dancing, and the hill was lit up with a giant, pink triangle.

I think my jaw literally dropped at the sight of it all. These kinds of crowds and crazy events are not something that I actively seek out. Actually, I avoid them like the plague, so had I known what I was going to walk into, I would have taken a cab instead of MUNI. But I'm so glad I was able to be a part of the fun. It was whole lotta fabulous!

I can still see the image of the massive rainbow flag blowing in the wind. It was an awesome, awesome sight to see so many people celebrating equality and freedom. What a fun detour we took!

Day 176: June 25, 2011

When there is a particularly lovely day in the city, I crave eating outdoors. I'm not picky about it, the eating outside can be at a restaurant or just in my backyard. This afternoon we headed over to North Beach, San Francisco's "Little Italy". It happens to have a disproportionately large number of outdoor seating areas, so I was a happy camper.

It's one of my favorite neighborhoods to walk around in because it reminds me of Italy. Today it also reminded me of my friends who are in Italy right now! And then I was jealous. But it was okay because I had fresh baked bread and copious amounts of pasta to console me.

The Husband and I enjoyed a fabulous dinner with friends followed by a late night stroll around the 'hood. It was bustling and glowing from the candlelit sidewalk cafes.

Then we ate tiramisu and cannoli from Stella Pastery and Cafe. And everything in the world was right.

Today I'm thankful for North Beach... and cannoli.  

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Day 175: June 24, 2011

Today I am thankful for Dahlias. 

I bought a beautiful, big red plant for my backyard and now every time I look outside I see the big balls of color. Dahlias are one of my absolute favorite flowers. In August, the Dahlia Dell in Golden Gate Park is one of my favorite places to *literally" stop and smell the flowers:)

Dahlia's also bring me back to my wedding day! 

In Centerpieces

A dahlia in memory of

White for the bride

Nature's Artwork!
Love, love, love!

All photos courtesy of Johnstone Studios

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Day 174: June 23, 2011

Today I'm thankful for late wedding gifts.

My Father-in-Law just emailed us the "cinema cut" of our wedding video! It's the first time I have seen any footage from the day, and while I cherish every photo, there is nothing quite like seeing a video to bring back the memories. And to also see some of the things I missed while I was dancing the night away!
Nick and I had a good cry watching it. I can't wait to see the full video!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Day 173: June 22, 2011

Today I am thankful for food blogs. 

OK, I'm more than thankful, I'm pretty much obsessed with them.
I want to be a food blogger when I grow up. I want to bake all day, take pretty pictures of food, and try new culinary delights on a daily basis. And maybe I wouldn't care if I had to roll around instead of walk, because it would be that cool.

Right now I'm loving this blog. A little bit of life and a whole lot of food. It's right up my alley and provided me with the most fantastic coffee cake recipe ever. 

Day 172: June 21, 2011

Today I am thankful for the wise words of Mahatma Gandhi,

"Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony".

True that.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Day 171: June 20, 2011

Today I am thankful for my new, temporary schedule.

I am a big cheerleader for my three days a week, twelve hour days schedule, so I think a lot of people would be surprised to hear me celebrate a more nine-to-five schedule. But when Summer is here and the days are long and the weather is beautiful, I am begging to get outside by midday, so the schedule suits me. 

Today I was freed from work at four-thirty, so I had plenty of time to take a walk in the park and spend some time in the backyard planting strawberries. Ahhhh. Just what the doctor ordered.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Day 170: June 19, 2011

Today I am thankful that I got to spend Father's Day with not only my Father, but also my Father-In-Law, and my Cat/Puppy Daddy!

Day 169: June 18, 2011

Today I am thankful for my Husband's light sleeping and early rising. 

We have an extra Golden Retriever for three weeks who is a bit of an early riser. not. Thankfully, I have a crazy awesome partner who got up early several times this week to take the dogs on a walk before work. At five-thirty.
That's love.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Day 168: June 17, 2011

Today I am thankful for the grill.

Not one specific grill, but the invention of it all together. It's extraordinary how it manages to infuse whatever is cooked upon it with the flavor of Summer. And you all know how I feel about Summer...

Grilled veggies are one of my faves, but I also am loving all the grilled fruit recipes. I'm hoping to experiment with grilled pizza this grilling season. Anyone have any tricks of the trade? 

Friday, June 17, 2011

Day 167: June 16, 2011

Today I'm thankful for Project Dog.

I submitted Zoe's picture a few months ago and she made it into the top three for the Golden Retriever category! We're racking up the votes and hoping she'll win a chance to be in the book compiled by Project Dog!

Project Dog is a project aimed at bringing together the worlds of purebred and rescue dogs through creative, modern dog photography. The goal is simple: To find and photograph a rescue and purebred of more than 170 dog breeds living in America. The photographer is awesome and we are so excited to possible have Zoe featured!

If you want to help out, click the link!

You have to "like" Project dog first, then click on the picture of Zoe (she's the Golden in the bunny ears!) and "like" her picture. 

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Guest Blogger: Megan's Literary Thanks

Today's guest post is from Megan at Pearls and Pears, a blog I follow regularly.I hope you all are enjoying the guest posts as much as I am! Thanks Megan!!!

I have to tell you that in starting this post... I have had a terrible work day. Its been a rough one and so on days like today I am particularly thankful for blogs like this one. Everyone has bad days. To take that one step further, everyone has HORRIFIC days. Which is what makes this blog so worthwhile. After a terrible, awful, no good, rotten day Emily gets to go home and talk about what she is thankful for. I can’t imagine it can seem as terrible as it seems when you have something to be thankful for. 

On that note.. lets begin. 
Today I am thankful for books. 

I know that this seems like a silly thing to be thankful for after that intro to this post, however books are my preferred method of escape. When I spend all day running around at work, racing to the gym, darting all over town to get everything done, I have found that the best way to turn my brain off is to loose myself in some good fiction. In fact in the past month I have read 4 books and am about to start the 5th. I cant seem to get enough. Especially on days that I just feel like I need a massive vacation! 

My favorite is when you get hooked on one author. Right now I am loving Sarah Addison Allen. All of her books take place in the south. The main female characters either own bakeries, restaurants, or coffee shops - So when the author mentions a particular cake or dish, she puts the recipes in the back of the book. Just darling. I could go on and on... I highly recommend her for the next time you need a little escape from reality. 

I am also constantly in awe of how one person could develop a story out of thin air. I wish I had the kind of imagination where I was creative enough to write even a simple fairytale. Maybe I will put that on my bucket list...
Anyway... that's me today! Very thankful for every chance I get to take a paperback vacation.

Thanks so much Emily for having me as a guest blogger!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Day 166: June 15, 2011

Today I am thankful for heirloom tomatoes 

because they are both food and art. 
I never tire of their hearty flavor and rainbow of colors. 

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Day 165: June 14, 2011

I love trying new restaurants and going out to eat. I really feel like a lot of a food experience is dependent upon the ambiance of the place where the food is enjoyed.
That being said...

Today I'm thankful for takeout. 

Sometimes *home* is just the right backdrop for a deliciously prepared-elsewhere meal.

Day 164: June 13, 2011

Today, in honor of her birthday, today I am thankful for my Sister Hailey.

Twelve years ago today I watched her come into the world (which will forever make me lean towards having an epidural!) 
She's the coolest twelve-year-old I know!
Happy Birthday Hailey!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Day 163: June 12, 2011

Today I'm thankful for the Haight Ashbury Street Fair.

I can smell the food grilling from my house. Grilled corn on the cob and kettle corn...yes please! And I'm not even going to begin talking about the entertainment value of the crowd. Unreal.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Day 162: June 11, 2011

I am an unlikely city dweller. I grew up in a small town, I went to college in a smallish town, I like small towns. I remember my first drive over the Bay Bridge into San Francisco, the place I was excited to call my  place of residence...for a couple years. I came armed with an air mattress and not much else. I was clearly not looking to lay down deep roots. I had big city dreams and was excited to try something different.

The first year that I lived in the city was probably the most trying time I've had ever. I was away from my family, my friends, and my boyfriend, and for the first time ever I really felt like I was on my own. I immersed myself in exploring the city about half of the time and I escaped to more familiar lands for the other half. Each time I drove back to my city life I would say to myself, "it's just one year".

And then one day, this city became my home.

I remember the day like it was yesterday, although I have no idea of the exact date. I was driving across the same bridge that I drove across a couple years before, late in the evening and I was struck by the skyline. It was my skyline. And as I crossed into San Francisco that night, I felt it in all of my being that I was home.

Tonight, I was reminded of that night as we drove home from a friend's house in the East Bay. The picture-perfect night provided a magnificent view of the city across the bay, the bridges on either side lit up, the skyline shimmering.

Tonight I am thankful for my city. 

I'm not quite sure how it wrangled me in, but at some point it became mine. And like most places, the longer I'm here, the smaller it feels. So maybe I'm no longer a small town girl, but a small city girl instead. 

Day 161: June, 10, 2011

Today I'm thankful for Drive-in Movies! 

I had my first Drive-in experience tonight and it was so fun! We brought a picnic dinner of sandwiches from Zanotto's (yum-o!) and, of course, champagne. Nothing goes better with The Hangover II than some bubbly:) It was all very Summery, except for the weather, so we huddled in the back of the car with loads of blankets to keep warm. I can't wait to go back when the weather is warmer to get the whole experience. 

Friday, June 10, 2011

Day 160: June 9, 2011

Today I'm thankful for a change in morning routine.

Usually I wake up for work at THE LAST moment possible to get me there in time. I shower the night before, I make my lunch the night before, and everything is lined up and ready to go in order to streamline my morning. The result is a partially functioning person for the first hour or two of work. I'm there physically, but I'm a little groggy to say the least.

This morning I woke up a little early, took a shower, and had time to go get coffee with the Hubby. Such a nice morning.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Day 159: June 8, 2011

Today I'm thankful for good timing.

Tonight, as soon as I walked into the MUNI station, my train appeared. When does that ever happen?!?! Made my night.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Day 158: June 7, 2011

Today I am thankful for easy reads.

I love a well written, thought-provoking piece of literature a lot of the time, but sometimes this girl needs a mindless, easy-to-read page-turning, simple book. Sometimes this girl needs two in a row. 
They help me get through a reading rut and I appreciate the mindless entertainment they provide at the end of my day.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Guest Blogger: Stephanie's Thanks

I have been a faithful follower of this blog since its inception - way back on January 1, 2011.  It has done many things for me, not the least of which has been bringing to my attention that one of my best friends is an incredible writer!  When she describes food - I get hungry.  When she talks about our home (Truckee) I am transported.  But what it has really done for me is really what the blog is all about - I have been more aware of what I am thankful for in my life.  Not a day goes by that I don't think to myself, if I were Emily, and I had to write a thankful post today, I would write it about...  What a gift that has been.  To spend at least a moment, each day, to think about what you are most thankful for.  And most of the time - it's much more than a moment.  There are many moments, many things to be thankful for.

Around this time of year, I find myself to be exceptionally thankful.  I am a teacher, and this is the time of year where students are gearing up to walk across the stage, and into the next phase of their lives.  It is such a special thing to be a part of that, year after year.  But every year, it also presents somewhat of a mind trip for me, since it feels like just yesterday my best girlfriends and I were making that same walk, gearing up for that same thing.  

But, alas, it has already been over a decade.  Which is why today, 
I am thankful for full circle moments.

I've always thought that the universe presents you with full circle moments in order to help you celebrate where you are in your life, and how far you've come.  I feel like every June, I am presented with one of these. And every June, I am reminded of how time is flying by, and I get further and further from my own graduation.  I encounter these full circle moments right around now, every single year.  And though it is sometime emotional, and I feel old, I know that it is the universe's way of telling me to celebrate, take stock, and be thankful.

Eighth Grade Graduation- June 1996

High School Graduation- June 2000

Fremont High School Graduation

Monday, June 6, 2011

Day 157: June 6, 2011

Today I'm thankful for Talenti Gelato.

I do not lie, it's pretty incredible stuff. It's a bit of an investment for dessert, but well worth it. And, did you know that gelato is lower in fat than ice cream? Have a double scoop!
Tonight we tasted the Dulce de Leche...delizioso!
Last week we had Caramel Cookie...magnifico!
They also have sorbet. How do you say "yum" in Italian? 
I just looked it up: "yum yum". 
I concur. 

Day 156: June 5, 2011

Today I am thankful for a sliver of moon. 

I always admire the moon and I'm pretty fond of all of the lunar phases :) but there's nothing like a crescent moon hanging in the sky. 
Last night the clouds cleared for long enough (hallelujah) that we got a glimpse of the waning moon and I thought about it again this morning. It looked liked something out of a painting, with the stars perfectly dispersed around it. 

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Day 155: June 4, 2011

Today I'm thankful for the nineties radio station on our cable TV. 

This morning we rocked out hard to a plethora of our favorite nineties hits. Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch and his Good Vibrations really added a good spin to my morning. Music always brings back so many memories, and particularly music from my middle school and high school years because it's a time that was so dominated by music. With every song that played, I was transported back to a time when I heard it playing. Marky Mark brought me back to my fourth grade air band recital where a group did a dance while they lip synced to it in bright pink polka dotted leotards. It was all very Milly Vanilli. Alanis Morisette's Ironic reminds me of a road trip with my friend Mira and her Mom in their red Geo Metro where we sang every song over and over again. And Matchbox 20 will always make me think about nights riding around in "the van" en route to the docks or Taco Bell.

I was happy to have a music-induced walk down memory lane this morning as we jammed to the nineties beat!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Day 154: June 3, 2011

Today I'm thankful for cereal for dinner. 

I used to eat cereal a lot for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, but a certain husband prefers more substantial meals, so I have gotten out of this habit. Tonight I am eating solo and I'm loving my return to my college staple. Cereal is totally underrated...its delicious!

Day 153: June 2, 2011

Today I'm thankful for constructive feedback. Both good and bad. 

I feel like the world would run a whole lot smoother if people would talk to each other more and talk about each other less. I also feel like the best way to learn and grow is to have someone tell you did wrong and how you could do better. Or even tell you how you did great and why it was so great. 

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Day 152: June 1, 2011

I had an afternoon that can be described as simply sublime. Or simple and sublime. 

The sun came out. 
I had a nice walk. 
Then I strolled through the farmer's market grabbing beautiful ingredients for dinner. I now, like the farmers, appreciate the Summer's bounty so much more now that we buy most of our produce straight from the farmers themselves. I had a very distorted view of seasonal produce when I shopped at grocery stores where you can find strawberries and melons all year. I love seeing the market change with the seasons and adjusting my cooking accordingly. 

Today I am thankful for steel drums.

There was a steel drum band playing my farmer's market soundtrack and it made me want to browse and browse. Unfortunately, it's a small market. And the nectarine lady was sick of me coming around for more samples. The drum music always puts me in a vacationy, summery mood, and the sun beating down only helped with that. 

At home, I turned on some island grooves to keep the sentiment while I whipped up some equally summery dishes: Shaved Summer Squash Salad and eggplant lasagna. 
Yay Summer!

Day 151: May 31, 2011

Today, on the last day of May, I am thankful that Summer is coming.

I would never have guessed by looking outside today that Summer is just around the corner because it has been a cold and rainy and gloomy day. But I know that Summer is coming. I know this because it was bright and there was light streaming in through the windows early this morning. And even as I write this, the sun has not quite set.
The long days just may be my favorite part of this time of year. I'm thankful for every extra minute of daylight!