Thursday, September 29, 2011

Day 272: September 28, 2011

Today I am thankful for Fall TV.

I always enjoy a little reprieve from TV in the Summer, but I'm pretty excited to have some of "my shows" back on! I just can't get enough of Modern's too much.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Day 271: September 27, 2011

Today I am thankful for the UCSF shuttle. 

Yes, I live about eight blocks from work. Yes, I know it's incredibly lazy of me to ever take a shuttle to work. But high heels and San Francisco hills do not mix well. My blisterless feet are even more thankful than I am.
In my defense, the eight blocks are long. And they're all up hill. Both ways. And if I walked every day, I'd also have to kick off my heels and walk barefoot.

Day 270: September 26, 2011

Today I am thankful for a little classroom time.

I am taking a basic digital photography class once a week and so far, so fun!
It's nice to be learning something totally unrelated to work. It's about time I learn how to use the settings on my camera!
I'm not ready to be a full-time student again, but I definitely enjoy being back in "school" for a couple hours each week. And the homework is way more fun than nursing school!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Day 269: September 25, 2011

Today I am thankful for roller dancers...if that's the correct term.

These people are no joke. Except they kind of are.
But anything that makes me laugh and smile every time I see it is A-OK.
Yesterday Nick and I walked past the roller dancing area in Golden Gate Park and saw a rather elderly woman, white-haired in grey spandex and pink roller skates, "dancing" with a dude that looked like Snoop Dog.

Today when I walked past the make shift rink they were blasting Boys II Men's "Motown Philly". That just happens to be one of my favorite old school jams and I had an incredible urge to snatch some skates and join in the fun.
It could have been disastrous.

The music is almost always awesome, there is usually a collection-worthy display of spandex, and there are people from every walk of life out there shaking their groove thing, people who you would not guess would be roller dancers.
I'm officially intrigued by roller dancing. I'm giggling writing about it. Everyone must see this in person.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Day 268: September 24, 2011

Tonight I am thankful for after dinner coffee.

I quickly turn into a shaky, jittery mess with too much caffeine so I reserve this special treat for times when I don't need to go to bed before four in the morning. It's pretty rare.
But I honestly do not think coffee tastes better at any other time of day than it does in the evening.

Day 267: September 23, 2011

Today I am thankful for fancy restaurants. 

In all honesty, I'm thankful for most restaurants, but every now and then I love getting dressed up for a date night with the hubby instead of opting for our usual flip flop appropriate attire.
Tonight we tried a hotel restaurant that I never would have thought to try had it not been for a super awesome travelzoo deal.
A little "chichi", but definitely not stuffy, and the food did not disappoint!
Four courses (plus amuse bouche) of fancy fabulousness.
And we finished with a homemade jelly bean. Bonus points.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Day 266: September 22, 2011

Today I'm thankful to have my hubby home! 

It was a long three weeks...

Zoe's thankful for her panda.

Day 265: September 21, 2011

Today I am thankful for fall
even though I'm still hoping for a good Indian Summer.

The end of September brings with it the warm, fuzzy feeling that I  associate with the pre-holiday season. The holiday season is not yet just around the corner (despite what commercial America says), but the air has changed. The light has changed. Pumpkin pie spices are creeping their way into foods.
Each year I beg the fall time to pass slowly because it's such a nice time to savor, and every year it zooms by faster than the last.
So, I'm soaking it in, raking lots of leaves, and infusing everything in my sight with pumpkin :)

Friday, September 23, 2011

Day 264: September 20, 2011

Today I am thankful for coupons.

I am definitely not a crazy coupon person, but I do love a good deal!
No clipping for me, but a quick Internet search usually scores free shipping at least.
And I rarely have to buy underwear. Score.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Day 263: September 19, 2011

Today I'm thankful for heated seats.

I rock those things ALL THE TIME! Even when it's hot enough to use the air conditioning.
I'm pretty much always cold, so the heated seats in our car have saved me on many occasions from a shivering ride. And they relax my muscles. It's almost like a massage...with no massaging.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Day 262: September 18, 2011

Today I am thankful for magazines.

As much as I try, I cannot get on the e-reader bandwagon. Books in e-reader form I totally get and can even imaging one day going for. But magazines...I don't think I'll ever be ready for that.
The big glossy pages, the sound they make when you flip them.
Magazines are a true, simple luxury for me.
I see them disappearing one by one, replaced by their online versions, and I'm not happy about it!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Day 261: September 17, 2011

Today I am thankful for football games.

Football makes it feel like fall even when it's Summer outside. It brings back memories of my childhood, watching the 49ers every week. It also brings back memories of high school cheerleading every weekend.
I still watch the 49ers, but the football parties are a lot milder than the parties my parents had (maybe it has to do with the win/loss ratio...) and now I get to watch my sister cheering on the sidelines! 

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Day 260: September 16, 2011

Today I am thankful for down comforters.

They always manage to keep the bed at the perfect temperature. And the fluff factor does not go unnoticed either. Co-zy!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Day 259: September 15, 2011

Today I'm thankful for Cruise Control.

I'm guessing that most people use cruise control to prevent themselves from driving too fast, and sometimes I use it for that purpose. But mostly, I use it so I don't drive too slow.
I can easily coast along going ten miles per hour below the speed limit on the freeway and not notice for a while, and that makes a long drive longer.
Cruise control keeps me from being the Granny driver in the fast lane. Thumbs up!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Day 258: September 14, 2011

On my walk to work this morning, I suddenly remembered one of my dreams. It was extremely vivid as if I had actually lived it and thinking about it made me giggle to myself as I walked as it played through my mind.

The Husband and I are strolling along a beautiful beach. I think it was Cape Cod. He decides to jump in and is followed by a stupid girl. I say she is stupid because I remember thinking, "stupid girl". I have no idea why.
I hear that someone has seen a lot of sharks in the water lately, so I yell to Husband, "I think there might be sharks! You should get out!"
The obedient man that he is, Husband heads toward the shore. Stupid Girl on the other hand decides to swim a little longer. Enter lots of BIG shark fins, circling each other and Stupid Girl in the water.
Then one of the sharks bites her arm off.
She gets out of the water and ever so calmly, I go over to her, use a shirt to apply pressure to the bleeding stump of an arm, and straight out of the CPR handbook, I point at a passerby and say, "You! In the red shirt! Call 9-1-1!" I remember thinking, "always identify who you're talking to instead of saying 'someone call 9-1-1' and give them a specific action". 
Paramedics arrive on an ATV and ask me how many sharks there were. I say, "Can we talk about this later? She doesn't have an arm."

Today I'm thankful for dreams.

I love dreams because they make absolutely no sense. I have not been thinking about sharks lately. I have not taken CPR since last year. Where did this come from?
And in the real world, when will I ever get to play the hero in a shark attack scene? Hopefully never. And when would I ever react so calmly and quote the CPR handbook in my mind? Random.
The sleeping mind is a wonderful, creative, wacky thing!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Day 257: September 13, 2011

Hubby in China day nine. Nine more to go.

Today I'm thankful for Skype.

A close second to seeing him in person. 
And the emoticons are way cooler than my facial expressions. 

Day 256: September 12, 2011

Today I'm thankful for Say Cheese.

To call myself a cheese-lover would be a bit of an understatement. I love the stuff.
This little cheese shop in the heart of Cole Valley had me at first whiff. 
The sandwiches are incredible, the cheese selection amazing, the smell nothing short of divine...and a little bit a good way.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Day 255: September 11, 2011

I remember where I was ten years ago, and on this day, every year for the past nine years
I have relived the memory.
What strikes me every year on the eleventh day of September is partially the tragic memory, the thoughts of those who lost their lives or their loved ones, the images of the day.
But what is also so vivid in my mind and body is the memory of how our nation completely united on that day; its citizens unusually patriotic and at once bonded by a feeling of vulnerability.
I remember thinking that "The Star Spangled Banner" had never felt more true, the American flag never more significant.

Today I'm thankful that in a time of great tragedy a nation can pull together and show its true colors: 
red, white, and blue.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Day 254: September 10, 2011

Today I'm thankful for my SuperFeet insoles. 

For some reason I have a hard time finding tennis shoes that fit well, don't give me blisters, and are comfortable. I put a lot of miles on my shoes, so I need them to fit the bill.
These little bits of awesomeness have solved many of my shoe woes - I wouldn't even think about going back to the factory insoles!

Day 253: September 9, 2011

There is a drawback to having a Husband that is so fantastic that you want to spend every waking moment with him. The same goes for having friends who happen to have fabulous significant others who are super fun to hang out with.

The problem (that is also completely NOT a problem) is that more often than not I get to hang out with all of them.
 I know what you're thinking, "Wow Emily, your life sounds really hard. I feel so bad for you. You are forced to spend time with your friends and their equally awesome partners. Boo hoo."
I get it. Not really a problem.
But! (Yes, there's a but!) Spending time with just girlfriends is fun in its own special way.

Tonight I spent the evening with two of my faves pedicuring, cupcaking, and chatting and cocktailing through dinner. It was a great way to spend my first Friday night as a temporary single lady.
The evening was not all fun and games, we stopped by Miette to do some serious research for Cupcakin', which you can soon read about.

If I could move into this little shop I probably would!

And no evening is complete without some VIP treatment, so at dinner we were seated at the VIP table (where they hide all the big know, Paris Hilton and us!)

I'm thankful for girls nights today!

And of course, thankful for the girls that made this night so fun.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Day 252: September 8, 2011

Today I'm thankful for absence.

Because it truly does make the heart grow fonder.

Day 251: September 7, 2011

I'm totally the girl who likes practical presents. I don't need anything and I hardly want for much either, making me a hard person to shop for, or so I've heard. 
But I think I'm pretty easy to please. 
One Christmas Nick got me a Costco size set of Pyrex. Romantic, right? My Mom was wishfully thinking that he was trying to throw me off with a gigantic, super heavy box that actually contained an engagement ring. Nope. Just Pyrex. But it has lids. And it's every imaginable shape and size. And I use it all the time. Awesome present in my book! 
I think I would be equally as happy to receive a vacuum cleaner if I needed one (or if it was a Dyson. Seriously.)! Blender? Sign me up! Especially if it's a Vitamix.

Today I'm thankful for my hand mixer. 

Also a present from my hubby, this thing gets the job done and it does it well. We had the most obnoxious hand mixer prior to this one; it was sluggish to start and smelled kind of toxic on high speeds. I don't hand mix that often, but every time I did I complained about its ineffectiveness. 
I know a lot of people might turn their noses up at the thought of getting appliances as gifts from their spouses, but for me, a good, practical gift shows me just how well he knows me. 
Every time I whip my egg whites or set the timer on my awesome mixer, I think of him.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Day 250: September 6, 2011

Today I'm thankful for the Dixie Chicks.

Such singable, fun songs they have. The first year I had my driver's license coincided with their first CD, so the red 4-runner rocked nothing but "Wide Open Spaces" for a solid year.
I just watched "Shut Up and Sing" (one of my chick *no pun intended* Netflix picks while I'm sans husband) and I remembered how much I love so many of their tunes.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Day 249: September 5, 2011

Today I am thankful for Labor Day.

Today marked my seventh year celebrating Labor Day camping.
Our yearly camping trip is one of my favorite traditions and is something I look forward to almost all year. The weekend is always filled with good things: friends, food, relaxation, and heat.
Oh how I need all of those things!

The camping trip has morphed slightly over the years as has the participants. It has mellowed quite a bit, people have come and go, we have added a few dogs and a strawberry blonde baby.
But this year felt like a return to our roots. All members of the original trip were present and we were at our favorite campground at Lake Shasta.

Nick and I packed up at the (literal) crack of dawn, not exactly how we would have chosen to wrap up the weekend, but driving away we had a pretty fantastic view of the Lake as the sun was rising.
I thought about our first year at that same campground, seven years ago. I drove up with my then boyfriend, to spend the weekend with the couple that would later become the Fujiis and their friends.
How far we have all come.
Bonds strengthened, cocktail recipes perfected, traditions created.

The funny thing about traditions is that while you remember the past, they also gives you a glimpse into the future. I can practically see the years unfold, Labor Day by Labor Day. 

Guest Blogger: Beth's Thanks

This week's guest post is from my friend Beth. Her blog always gives me a "goodlaff" as she talks about weddings and life as a newlywed. And she had a fantastic wedding, so she knows what she's talking about! 


For me, 2011 has been a year full of newness. So far, I have a new husband and a new last name. The next few months will bring me new passport stamps, a new home, and—fingers crossed--a new job. 

In just a few weeks (25 days, but who’s counting?), my brand-new husband and I will get on a plane bound for Europe. Neither of us has been to Barcelona, Florence, Rome, or any of the other fantastic places listed in our cruise brochure, but you can bet that the mere idea of eating new food, making new friends, and visiting some of the most iconic destinations in the world has us beyond excited for this trip. We return home from our Honeymoon on my birthday (which I will get to celebrate on two different continents) and it may well be my last birthday in California for a very long time. A week after we land, we’re packing up everything we own and moving to a new house in a new city in a new state. All of that’s an awful lot of change for someone to handle in a six-month period, but it has me excited in a way I haven’t been since I got on a plane bound for a year of teaching English in China over six years ago. 

So, today I am thankful for new adventures.
                                                                                         Though sometimes scary and unpredictable, all these new adventures mean new challenges, new places and faces, and a chance for me and my husband to continue to learn and grow--both together and as individuals. Making such a big move requires a huge leap of faith, but then again, most real great adventures do. I could call either our trip or our move the “adventure of a lifetime,” but I know our adventures are only just beginning. And I can’t wait.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Day 248: September 4, 2011

Today I am grateful for Gin Rummy.

I've been playing it for almost as long as I can remember. Each Summer when Steph and I were on our East Coast trips we would play game after game after game.
I'm not going to lie, we were slightly obsessive.
We started on the first day of the trip with a big, blank notebook. Each day we would play a pre-determined amount of games...I think in our last year we were up to twenty or twenty-five games.
When there was one game played, we had to play them all. Some days we would play multiple "sets" of games, up until the wee hours of the morning with a pack of cards, some Haagen Daz coffee ice cream, and a bag of Nacho Cheese Doritos.
We would keep track of our points each day and add up the total at the end of the trip to determine the big winner. I don't remember who won, but it was probably me. Unless she cheated.
Today we broke out the cards again for a little Gin Rummy and it brought back memories of the good old days! It was no marathon Rummy session like we used to do, but we can still play a mean game.
She won, but there may or may not have been some cheating involved.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Day 247: September 3, 2011

Today I am thankful for lakes.

I grew up swimming in lakes more often than oceans. Cold, clear, mountain lakes.
I love me an ocean, but there's something so lovely about a lake.
No big waves. No sharks. The perfect place to plop an inner tube and float.
And float I did. For the better part of the day.
Lake Shasta, I heart you.

Day 246: September 2, 2011

Today I am thankful for crops and orchards.

I always admire the organized way in which they are planted row by row, the spacing and slight diagonal just so. I wonder how it's done? A machine that lays each plant down in its perfect position? Anal person hand planting with a measuring tape out for accuracy?
These are the thoughts that go through my head on road trips :)
Either way, I enjoy the effect that the rows flashing by creates as I drive by. 

Monday, September 5, 2011

Day 245: September 1, 2011

Today I am thankful for September!

It's here, and for a San Franciscan that means Summer has arrived! What's that you say? The city is still covered in a blanket of fog and it's sixty degrees outside? 
Not for long...I hope.
The first day of September always marks the potential beginning of our Indian Summer and I am uber-happy that it is here. 
Bring on the sunshiny days!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Day 244: August 31, 2011

Today I am thankful for Jeopardy episodes that make me feel smart.

I remember watching Jeopardy as a kid and thinking that the contestants on the show were absolute geniuses. And when my parents knew the answers to the questions questions to the answers, I was shocked.

I am older and wiser now.
Some episodes are filled with questions I know and some episodes make me feel like  I clearly paid no attention in any of my many years of school because I'm stupid with a capital 'S'.
I know that just because I don't know the answers to the questions (Argh, I did it again! Questions to the answers...) it does not make me dumb. I know that when I know all the answers it does not make me a genius.
But it sure does make me feel like one!
There is nothing better than shouting "What is...!" at Alex Trebek.
It's especially great when none of the actual contestants get it right and I do.

Other awesome bonuses of watching Jeopardy in my house:

I have a husband who likes to imitate the Daily Double sound (boo doo-boo doo-boo doo-boo doo-doo-doo-doo!)
I also have a husband who likes to say "This is Jeopardy" all pronounced as if he is a Spanish Alex Trebek. I don't know where it came from or why it started, but I like it.