Sunday, July 31, 2011

Day 212: July 30, 2011

Few things get me going like a good baking session. 
It's both relaxing and stimulating. The myriad of textures, scents, and flavors soothes me, but the precision that it requires keeps me excited and on my toes. Nerd alert! I am a recipe follower to the core, which may explain why I usually prefer baking to cooking. 

My baking session "recipe" usually calls for lots of sugar, flour, and butter, an ipod for shuffling good music, and every pot, pan, and utensil I own. The result is usually something delicious, sometimes something beautiful (and sometimes something that only tastes beautiful), and a head to toe dusting of flour for myself and the kitchen. 

Today I found myself in baking bliss. I have mentioned before my fascination with a certain Summer pie, and tonight I had just the right occasion to make it for...finally!

 Today I am thankful for baking. And, of course,  friends to bake for.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Day 211: July 29, 2011

Some of my South Bay buddies ventured up for an evening at Off the Grid. It was my first time venturing to the Fort Mason event where there are thirty food trucks and tents. And swarms of people!
My first stop was 3-Sum Eats for some Macaroni and Cheese Spring Rolls with Fondue Dipping Sauce and a Cantaloupe Basil Lemonade. I would not have pegged myself as a Mac and Cheese Spring Roll person, but when I saw them and smelled them, I knew I had to have them. The Macaroni was not your run of the mill Kraft, but delicious, thick, stringy, cheese covered pasta.  Not something I could eat everyday, but well worth the exorbitant calories!

Delicious Indulgence

 I don't know why, but food that comes from a truck is automatically more intriguing and tasty! We frequent the Thursday night Upper Haight Off the Grid, but we were excited to try some of the trucks that don't park in our neighborhood.
We sampled:
    Happy Dumplings: A Pot Sticker Tent. My fave was the Shrimp.
The Creme Brulee Man: Cafe Mocha made with Ritual Coffee
tasted like a delicious mocha pudding, but with that delectable
Brass Knuckles: Notorious P.I.G.= Rosemary Waffle Heaven
with a side of...P.I.G.
The Crack Bar

In their words: "OMG. OMFG." True Story.
Cookie base. Salted Caramel. Peanut Butter. Chocolate. Legit.

Today I am thankful for food carts.

Fun on wheels!

Day 210: July 28, 2011

Today I am thankful for evenings in bed. 

For some reason the Roses are exhausted today, wishing it was the weekend. So we're climbing into bed at eight-o-clock and calling it a night. And it feels gooooooood.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Day 209: July 27, 2011

Today I am thankful for missions accomplished.

One of my resolutions this year was to read one book each month. I sort of knew that this would be an easy goal to fulfill and probably could have set my sights higher, but I wanted it to be attainable. After all, I could have tried to read fifty books, but that likely would have made reading a big chore!
As the seventh month of the year comes to a close (holy cow! Already?!), I have completed thirteen books!  I'm on track to fulfill my resolution and read over eighteen books! And the more I read, the more I want to read.
While I will not consider my resolution met until I have finished a book in December (and one every month before that), my mission was to read more, and I have! Success!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Day 208: July 27, 2011

Today I am thankful for dining deals.

Hubby and I had a date night tonight trying a new restaurant with a Travelzoo bargain. I am loving the discount dinners lately, even though they aren't such a bargain when we buy them all!
Deals like these are the perfect way to break out of our restaurant routine and try new places with a prix fixe menu. 

Day 207: July 26, 2011

Today I'm thankful for my new desk organizers! 

My coworkers had a giggle this morning when I rolled in with my bag of desk beautifying business. Apparently we can order desk organizing paraphernalia though an office supply store. But I was pretty excited to organize as I've always been overly fascinated with office supplies and have never actually worked in an office. And I found some crazy fun stuff by Greenroom to brighten the place up. Now I am in label maker heaven with all my files to tag!
This is my type A idea of a good time.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Day 206: July 25, 2011

Today I'm thankful for audio books.

The husband and I have been doing a lot of driving lately (or rather he has been doing a lot of driving and I have been doing a lot of backseat driving). I don't mind drives so much as it gives us time to catch up and is some needed downtime in our busy lives.
The drive is made even less boring when we have an awesome audio book to listen to. I can only tolerate it for about forty-five minutes before I either start daydreaming or fall asleep (seriously! Am I narcoleptic?!?) but while I'm focused I love every minute. 

Day 205: July 24, 2011

Today I'm thankful for sushi!

Part of the fun for me is watching my husband turn into a "Man V. Food" episode as he puts away so much sushi that it can only be described as astonishing. I'm a sucker for the classics, but I'm also loving the incorporation of less traditional ingredients like banana, cilantro, and jalapeno peppers. Sushi fusion?

Monday, July 25, 2011

Day 204: July 23, 2011

Tonight I am thankful for dinners outside. 

There is nothing I love more than a warm evening, out on the deck, eating as the sun sets. I wish I could bottle this Summer thing up and release it sporadically throughout the year. 

Day 203: July 22, 2011

Today I am thankful for exercise classes.

I usually gravitate towards outdoor physical activities because they feel less like exercise to me, so I don't get as bored. I would much, much rather go for a walk or jog in the park than do half the distance on a treadmill.
 The exception to this rule is classes. I love group exercise classes because I am so much more likely to push myself. There is absolutely no way I would get myself to do the amount of lunges I did today  without a room full of people doing them with me and Michael Jackson's Billy Jean remix blasting over the loud speaker. 

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Day 202: July 21, 2011

Today I'm thankful for upcoming vacations.

The planning and anticipation is almost as fun as the vacation itself! Almost.

Day 201: July 20, 2011

Today I am thankful for a good cup of tea.

I came home late last night and poured a couple cups to beat the San Francisco Summer chill that was clinging to me after the game. I haven't stopped drinking tea since. First thing this morning: a delightful green tea. Throughout the day: a minty herbal tea bag dropped straight into my water bottle. It's almost like a Mojito, but I can enjoy it at work. Tonight: decaf chai.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Day 200: July 19, 2011

Today I am thankful for *cue awesome woman announcer voice*
My San Francisco Giants!!!

I'm not a die hard fan and most of the time would rather watch something else on TV than one of the hundreds of games that will be played each season, but then sometimes I catch myself watching. And it's pretty exciting. Shhh...don't tell my husband- we'll never miss a game. 

We went to the Giants/Dodgers game tonight and sat in the bleachers. I was happy to celebrate a good beating of our rival team in the bleachers with the serious/drunk fans. I think it's the best place to sit with the exception of the obligatory beer spillage on the feet. It's spirited, it's rowdy, there's always chanting of "What's the matter with (insert Dodger player's name)?" "He's a bum!", and there's usually a wave. I love waves. It brings me back to my high school cheerleading days. 

There is something about watching a baseball game live that is fantastic. It might be the beautiful stadium that is AT&T Park with its view of the bay. It could also be the sounds of fans cheering, the bat striking the ball, and the "Take Me Out To the Ball Game" that for some reason make me feel extra American. Or it might be the hot dogs and churros and hot chocolate. 
I think you all know how I feel about hot dogs. 
Maybe you think they're gross. 
I think they're amazing.

Guest Blogger: Amy's Thanks

Today's Guest Post is courtesy of my Cousin Amy from A Sorta Fairytale in New York. Thanks Amy!!!
Enjoy Everyone...

I’m a teacher, so it may go without saying that I really love kids.  Lately, I’m reminded of this fact a lot, as I’ve spent the last couple of weeks playing with some out-of-town cousins who are five and two.  I spend the school year with tween-agers so these little ones are quite an interesting change.  For much of the summer so far, my car has been the happy host to car seats, wet bathing suits, giggles on top of squeals, and these two cuties. 

I love kids because their energy and exuberance is contagious.  I love the way that my middle schoolers literally throw their hands in the air when they want to answer a question, and I love the fact that Blake the two-year old stops crying at the kiss of a boo-boo.  Children are resilient and their priorities are blissfully simple and intuitive.   
I don’t have kids of my own, and I’d like to keep it that way for at least a long while, 

but today I’m thankful for other people’s children.  

Whether it’s my students, my cousins, or my friends’ kids, they give me just the right dose of silliness, and the unique perspective that only those much younger can help to conjure.  

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Day 199: July 18, 2011

Today my baby turned two! 

Beet Carrot cake for the Birthday girl!

She loved the hat ;)

Cutest Baby!

The name Zoe comes from the Greek word for life. I think it's pretty fitting since that is what every bone in her wiggly body screams! She is vivacious and full of zest and spunk but still sweet as pie! Do I sound like a proud Mama or what?

Today I'm thankful for...

Easter Smiles


Walking Buddy/ Mole Huntress

 and Girl's Best Friend


Monday, July 18, 2011

Day 198: July 17, 2011

Today I am thankful for Engagements and Anniversaries!

One of my best friends Brittney got engaged to Sasha, the guy that I'm pretty sure was handmade especially for her. I haven't checked the details, but based on their uncanny compatibility I can say this with extreme confidence.
Similar to me, Brittney did not take the task of finding a suitable man lightly-she's picky, so when she told me about Sasha, I could tell pretty early on that he was a keeper!
And he brought her up in a hot air balloon to propose! Awesome!
Congratulations to my best buddy and her *fiance*!!!

 One year ago today I watched two of my best friends Stephanie and Mike tie the knot! One year under their belt and many more to follow.
I watched their wedding video again today! So fun!

Love is in the air.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Day 197: July 16, 2011

Today (and once each month) I am thankful for Bon Apetit Magazine.

It comes to me in the mail always looking so dapper, with a picture on the cover that draws me in, begging me to read the issue cover to cover. Right. Now.
This month, I am swooning over the cover recipe, like seriously swooning.
This pie looks amazing: Blackberry and Lime Meringue Pie. I cannot wait to make it!
I'm desperately hoping that someone will invite me to an event worthy of this incredible pie. Because it screams to be shared, showed off, and worshiped.
But mostly, if I made it and didn't take it somewhere, it would surely disappear. And that would be bad (and oh-so-good at the same time:) On second thought... ) 

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Day 196: July 15, 2011

Today I am thankful for my strawberry plants.

No red fruit yet, but I have some pretty delicious looking strawberries ripening as I write! My backyard is definitely not the urban oasis I would like it to be, but little by little we are adding to the concrete with bursts of beauty. Lucky for me, strawberries seem to thrive even in the fog and wind!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Day 195: July 14, 2011

Have I ever mentioned that I'm thankful for Mexican food? 

Warm, salty tortilla chips? Guacamole? Margaritas? 
Well, I am. 
It makes me want to say "Ole" and join a mariachi band. 
Or maybe that's the tequila...

Day 194: July 13, 2011

Today I am thankful for my bed mates.

With Nick out of town, and San Francisco "Summer" in full swing, I've been piling on the layers and swaddling myself in blankets at night. But this morning I woke up as an Emily Sandwich. I was squashed between two furry, golden balls of heat. Usually I'm the one that takes up the whole bed, but Zoe, clearly excited that she was invited into bed, decided to take full advantage of the situation and sprawl out. Whatever...I was warm!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Guest Blogger: Nick's Thanks

I am honored and excited to present this week's guest blogger: 
Mr. Nicholas Rose! 
Otherwise known as the best husband ever. 
He also goes by Nick.

As we go through life, each one of us builds our own unique collection of memories. Memories built by the taste of our Grandma's prize winning pie or by the excitement of our first kiss. 
For me, most of my memories are triggered by sounds, particularly by music. Music is a universal language spoken by everyone. Music is what lulls babies to sleep and gets Grandparents up and doing the Jitterbug like they're back in High School. Music can be as complex as an entire orchestra all flowing in harmony, or as simple as a baby's rattle.

Music has always been a part of my life. I was born with it in my blood and in my bones. It's something that I can relate to and always find solace in. With my dad being a musician since he was eight, I was only destined to follow in his footsteps in some manner. At 3 years old I had a guitar in hand playing to a crowd of stuffed animals. High school came with a few bands, gigs played, and talent shows won. Whenever I hear Eric Clapton’s "Wonderful Tonight" I will always think of the moment that the relationship between my wife and I took a huge leap. Old songs, new songs, they all carry me off to a different time in life. Listening to music for me is doing donuts in a DeLorean.

Today, I am thankful for Music.

I love how music can get a whole crowd of people movin'. Did you just have to learn the whole dance to "Thriller"? Do you have a sudden urge for Jack Daniels when the jukebox screams "Free Bird"? Does your butt bump around when someone turns on "Baby Got Back"? (For the record: no, yes, and...yes!) I love almost any form of music. I love that a song can get me moving in the morning (although I think Em could do without the singing at 6am). I am thankful for what music offers and will continue to do for ages to come! 
Rock on!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Day 193: July 12, 2011

Today I am thankful for some face-to-face time with the Hubs via Gmail Video Chat. 

I've missed his smiling face! 

Day 192: July 11, 2011

Today I am thankful for Anthropologie

If I could shop at only one place, Anthropologie would be it. It's totally a one stop shop: housewares, clothing, shoes, toiletries, jewelry. And it just smells so good!
The downside that is also an upside...I pretty much always find something that I don't want to live without. And I usually can't afford it.
Or I have to do some serious justifying in my head.
Honest moment: I'm good at justifying.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Day 191: July 10, 2011

Today I am thankful for Sundays in the Park. 


Lindy in the Park is fabulous. I love dropping in for some swing dancing lessons or even just walking by hearing the big band music and watching other people dance.

They block off the roads to car traffic. It makes for a relaxing and exhaust-free walk and makes me feel like a rebel when I walk down the middle of the street.

Today there was a lady riding a magenta beach cruiser with a boom box (yes, boom box- circa 1990) blasting Justin Bieber  from her basket. It was amazing.

There is usually a concert somewhere. Today was the San Francisco Symphony. Loved it!

Golden Gate Park is my favorite neighbor. 

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Day 190: July 9, 2011

Today I am thankful to have my buddies back after their European Summer holiday!

We spent the afternoon with the Fujiis celebrating their return home in true European style. 
First stop: wine tasting- always a fun way to start off! 
Second stop: Casa de Fujii for Spanish tapas (with an Italian and Greek Flair. And a bit of French thrown in for good measure). Flat bread and Greek yogurt curry dip made by Mrs. Fujii and delicious hummus made my Mr. Fujii. And sliced baguette rubbed with tomatoes and topped with cheese and meat. All washed down with Prosecco Sangria. 
Needless to say, we required a walk after all that, so we strolled through the neighborhood with the doggies and enjoyed the sunshine! 
Before heading home for the night we finished wish freshly baked apricot crumble. 
I'm always thankful for a fabulous, relaxed Saturday with friends, but it's even sweeter when they've been gone for almost a month (and they come bearing European souvenirs and make yummy food)!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Day 189: July 8, 2011

Today was my first day "flying solo" in my new job. I was the only one in the office so I had no one to ask questions or look to when I wasn't sure of something. It always takes a day like that to make me realize what I actually do know and what I don't. It was A-Okay.

But what I'm thankful for today was some alone time.

Having the space to myself was both lonely and awesome at the same time. I was twice as productive and got to play my music loud and proud. I definitely prefer to not be sequestered in an office by myself every day, but every now and then I will happily accept. :)

Day 188: July 7, 2011

Today I'm thankful for Billie Holiday. 

Music to my ears. Literally.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Day 187: July 6, 2011

Seven of my colleagues retired at the end of June and today was the retirement party. One week into retirement and these ladies look fabulous. Relaxed, practically glowing, and young! Because they are young!
Most of them have been working at UCSF for thirty years; for most of them that has been their entire career. One of my mentors who is retiring at the whopping age of fifty-two, has been in the Intensive Care Nursery since she graduated college at twenty-two, the same age that I was when I started. She brought a scrap book of her years at UC and it made me think about my own career. How it started, how it has evolved, and where it is going. If someone had told me when I started that I would still be in the same hospital, in the same department when I retired, I would have laughed in their face. I was non-committal, looking for adventure, and ready to travel the country as a nurse.
But now thirty years doesn't seem so long. And staying in a job that I love doesn't seem like such a bad plan. I'm still ready to travel the country (and world), but not necessarily as a nurse.

Today I am thankful for the retirees.

I am thankful for the knowledge they have shared with me and for making retirement look so good. Something to look forward to:)

Day 186: July 5, 2011

Today I'm thankful for the Furminator

Do you know about this amazing invention? If you have a furry pet, it is the only way to go. The first time I used it on my cat I was so excited that I should have been on an infomercial. The amount of hair that comes off of (and therefor does not shed onto your furniture and clothing) is nothing short of astonishing.
Today I employed the Furminator to rid Taiko and Zoe of the burs that they collected while camping, and guess what? It works for that too!
End advertisement.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Guest Blogger: Kristin's Thanks

This week's guest blogger is my fabulous friend, Kristin! Enjoy!

Last week, I started a new job. Not just any job...the job that is at the top of the ladder that I have desperately wanted to climb for a long while now. For years, I was scared to start over, because at the time, my friends (who I am so incredibly proud of) had already started in their "forever" careers. They were adults. I didn't feel like I really measured up as a peer to them. 

But I did it anyways. Not only did I go back to school, but I moved to a different state, and for the first time ever, really struck out on my own. I was proud to be doing it. 

While in school though, I often felt like I wasn't going fast enough...that I would fall behind my peers even more than I already was. I was obsessed with the ideal of what a 26-year-old's life SHOULD be like. Luckily, this feeling made me work hard, and move forward.

After graduating, the job market was brutal, so I applied and got the only job that I an intern. I felt a little defeated for a while. Here I was, at 28 now, and an INTERN, where most of my peers were years into their "forever" careers. But again, it only made me work harder. 

And today, after all this, I can say that the time I took to start over has amazingly, incredibly, fantastically paid off. I realized there is no timeline to work from. My pace was perfect for me. I could have never appreciated this place when I was younger. I wasn't ready for it. But now, I have found THE job. The one that makes me happy. The one that makes me feel like a grown-up. My "forever" career. 

So, today I am thankful for being a late-bloomer.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Day 185: July 4, 2011

Today I'm thankful for s'mores. 

There is just so much that is right about them! We have some awesome roasting sticks that always make us the envy of the campsite ;)
Even though I love the classic s'more and eat one (or a few) of the original, I always try to mix it up a bit. This time I added sliced strawberries to mine...they were winners!

Day 184: July 3, 2011

Today I am thankful for camping...because it's AWESOME!

I love falling asleep to the sounds of nature, and I sleep like a baby on the hard ground...go figure!
I have been filling my days with super-stressful stuff like lounging at the lake, campfire cooking, playing Catchphrase and reading magazines.

The Relaxation Station. AKA Island Party

Claire. AKA camp chef
 I also highly suggest that everyone go camping with foodie friends who make banana buckwheat pancakes, grapefruit margaritas, and gourmet guacamole. 

Day 183: July 2, 2011

Today I am thankful for my adorable husband who created a very lovely home away from home.

Complete with lanterns. Yes, solar-powered lanterns to light the doorway that he was incredibly excited about.
He's a genius, people. A freaking camping genius.

Day 182: July 1, 2011

Today I am thankful for big skies filled with bright stars. 
I'm also thankful for the sign I saw coming into Oroville: "Welcome to Oroville! The fun starts here..."

Alright Oroville. Show me what you got.