Sunday, February 14, 2016

You Make Me Smile With My Heart

Whether you are in a relationship, a single pringle, or on the dating scene, it can be difficult to find the fun and flirtation of Valentine's Day anymore. So much pressure, so little originality. No one wants to prove their love on a specific day of the year, along with the rest of the nation. And how much red and pink can one stomach?

Despite the above, I do have a special place in my heart for this overproduced holiday. I think it harkens back to the days of exchanging cheap little Valentine's Day cards that could be purchased at the local drugstore.
I was always very selective of the valentines I chose - they couldn't be too sappy, but they also couldn't be childish. It was important to incorporate the latest trend in cartoon characters or pop culture.
Some of my selections could probably be found among this list:

I have fond memories of those 80s-themed cards, but have you ever looked at even older vintage valentines? Warning: awkward and confusing images to follow.
Anyone else find these strange and slightly disturbing?
What's even more puzzling is how many of these cards involve food, most noticeably hot dogs.

Truly, there were many cards so very far up on the creepy scale, that I didn't even feel comfortable posting them! Ah, love...

Remember creating homemade boxes that you would tote to school and set on your desk eagerly awaiting to see which admirers would strike?

One February 14th, my teacher held a contest for the best Valentine's Day box. I can't remember what the prize was, but I was determined to be the winner. This would be a box beyond what any other 8 year old had imagined. You have to understand, I'm the girl that made a to-scale replica of King Tut's tomb out of gingerbread complete with brown sugar sand - I didn't mess around when it came to projects and first place. It had to be unique and it had to be show-stopping. My mom helped me devise a box that would play music when you lifted the flap and inserted the card. Then I went crazy with doilies and glitter and cut-outs and color and hearts. Happily, my creation received all of the attention I had hoped for when it was time for the official reveal. I was confident I'd be crowned the winner and practically glowed in anticipation of a champion title. That was until a buzz of giggles and exclamations began on the other side of the classroom. Seconds later, I could make out a "zoom-zoom" sound. That zooming noise belonged to a remote control car which my classmate had topped with a Kleenex box. My ornate musical box was quickly forgotten and my peers squealed with delight as the boy maneuvered the mobile box from desk to desk in order to collect his valentines (and praise).
To be fair, the kid deserved the win and somehow my excitement for Valentine's Day did not sour. 

Other Valentine's Days that did not garner 1st place include:

The year I spent the entire rainy day gift wrapping boxes of chocolates in a theater's lobby as a bonus promotion for patrons that purchased tickets to a certain Broadway show. Super romantic.

Another Valentine's Day, I babysat until late in the evening, only to come home to discover I apparently didn't show up to a singing gig and devastated an entire theater community. Trouble was, I had never been told about this event. Not even a mention. Obviously a longer story. Obviously, super, super romantic.

Last year's Valentine's Day was the most exciting because I viewed the new home my parents were considering buying and ended up helping them to put an offer in on the spot. OK, so, still not at all romantic.

Actually, I don't think I've ever had a romantic Valentine's Day. Hmph! Well, I'm not giving up on the promise of one day being hit by Cupid's arrow, especially now that I know I am in a conveniently opportunistic location:

Thanks, doc - Sounds like my odds are good! Perhaps one year after meeting my love amongst the flora and fauna of Fort Tryon, we will celebrating Valentine's Day as an old married couple, waxing poetic such as this:


Monday, February 8, 2016


Oh, hello there! Remember me? Brown hair, sturdy scandinavian build, often have a baked good in my purse...?


Well, understandable. It's been a while.
When the calendar turned from 2015 to 2016, I thought about explaining why so much time has passed and delving deep into the emotional toll of those events. But that's not really what this blog has ever been about. I certainly over share, but the topics tend to be about gummy legos and picnic spots and dachshunds wearing hats.  

So, I'm going to stick to the "likes", if that's OK with you. Since I missed posting at the New Year, I figured the Chinese New Year would be even better. In fact, it's the Year of the Monkey and what's not to like about monkeys?

I will say that 2016 has so much promise and I'm really jazzed to start living it. My attitude toward a chance at another year in this crazy miracle of a world is pretty much this:

See ya soon!

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Stars and Stripes Forever

There were a lot of events in the past month that make me even more proud to be an American.

Happy Birthday, U.S.A!

Have a safe and celebratory 4th of July.

Oh, and Little Edie wanted to say something, too:

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Play With Your Food

Sometimes I heart the internet so very much.

This crafty recipe has been circling Facebook feeds for the past week and I can't wait to try and create the mash-up of my favorite sweet and my ultimate childhood toy.

Bonus: Stepping on one of these versions will be far less painful than the old school stray LEGO.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Cadbury Mini Egg Krispies Treats

I'm not sure what chocolate, eggs, pastels, and bunnies have to do with the Easter holiday, but I'm not asking questions. I'm just eating these:
Cadbury Easter Candy Coated Mini Eggs, 10 Ounce Bag

Probably one too many eggs. Luckily they are mini.

I had some fixings for rice krispies treats in the cupboard and decided to mix some of my favorite things all together. Really, what could go wrong with this trio?

It's one of those ridiculously simple desserts. 
Begin by making the Original Rice Krispies Treats Recipe up until combining the krispies into the marshmallow.
Take about 4-5 servings (I used 160g) of the mini eggs and break them into small pieces. This part got a little messy for me. I put them in a ziploc bag and then mashed them, but I ended up with a lot of crumbs and powder. I guess I don't know my own strength! If you have a good way to create little bits without obliterating the candy, please comment below.

Once the cereal-marshmallow mixture has cooled slightly, mix in the crushed eggs.

Press into a pan, depending on your desired shape and thickness. I dotted each serving with one whole mini egg.

Cute, right?

 So there is a sweet treat for the holiday (or anytime, really).

And speaking of a year-round sweetie:

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Left Shark Forever

When I remember, I like to have the 1st of the month be dedicated to some cute animal video or meme or story or picture. 

Well, there is only one animal that is worthy of such an honor this past month:
Left Shark, February 2015

I just couldn't get enough.




BuzzFeed Articles:

The Man Behind the Fin:

Tweets and Tributes:

(above illustration by Victor Kerlow)

Inside Scoop:

Even Controversy!:

I love it all. I love you the most, Left Shark.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Juno Snow

I hear a storm's a brewin'. It has a name.

Which sounds like this:

Or if you are a MT nerd like me, this:

And it looks like this:

Growing up in Minnesota (come on, you knew that was coming), arctic conditions were not unusual. We considered our ability to brush off a blizzard a badge of honor to wear proudly - over our seven layers of clothing, of course. During the months of November-April in Minne-snow-ta, you are guaranteed to find this aisle in about any store.
Yes, that consists of hand warmers, ice picks, and snowball makers.
The above items would have come in handy during one of these
Famous Minnesota Winter Storms.

We all tell a tall tale of the '91 Halloween Blizzard. I remember boarding the "activities bus" which departed around 5pm. I think I had been in rehearsals for The Hobbit: The Musical (never again had anyone seen such a gripping portrayal of Nori the Dwarf). The snowflakes were just starting to fall. By the time I stepped off the bus 40 minutes later, my feet sunk into a drift up to my ankles. Needless to say, every Minnesotan child went Trick-Or-Treating as a "bundled up child" for Halloween that year, but again, it was par for the tundra course.

These East Coasters handle the storm news a bit differently. And by different, I mean cray-cray. For instance, one hour after an official storm warning, I dare you to find a tub of hummus or a bag of chips within a 5-mile radius. So dramatic about their snack selection. I mean, this is going to be over in a day, right? I guess it doesn't help when the headlines are like this:
Worst Ever Historic Oh My God Imminent Stop Everything You Are Doing and Hide Under Your Bed With Hummus and Your Dog Storm

So we are either about to be slapped with a heavy dose of winter reality, or...not. Time will tell. I'm curious to see how it will rank in NYC Winter Storm History. Did you know the 1888 storm is the impetus for moving NYC's wire infrastructure underground? 

Check out THESE captivating NYC snowstorm shots. If only they had Instagram then!

During the February 2003 event, I was happily stuck in San Francisco with my mom and cousin, unable to get a flight back into snowblanketed-NYC. I missed a few auditions, but had a fun touristy time at the wharf eating sour dough bread and riding street cars.
The snow dump during the 2010 holidays was particularly adventurous for me being that I was working in Anguilla and had no route back to a shutdown NYC. Instead, I had to fly directly from the tropics to Minnesota, where I had a suitcase full of conch shells and flip flops.
February 2006 I had just started to recover from a severe bout of the flu. I remember trudging through those record setting 26.9 inches to my corner bodega for some medicine and soup.
W 155th Street, NYC - February 2006

Do you have any snowed-in stories from epic storms? 

If you really want to put things in perspective, I suggest hankering down to read The Children's Blizzard. It chronicles one of the most brutal and tragic Midwestern storms of all time, which gives a new appreciation for today's weather and communication technology, as well as a better understanding of the severe homesteading life that many immigrants faced during the 1800s.

Besides not living on the prairie in 1888, I am also thankful that I have no need to drive a car today or venture too far from home. What are your snowed-in plans?

I've got my Gap fair isle leggings on,
(sold out online, similar HERE and HERE)

oils incorporated into my beauty routine,

 Macadamia Deep Hair Mask - Target

Maracuja Oil Rollerball - Tarte

and a few slow cooker and one pot recipes added to Pinterest.

As far as Bryndal is concerned, this is what he thinks of braving the snow with protective booties.

So...that's not going to work. Any other ideas?

The background on my gmail is falling white stuff, so I guess the countdown has begun.
Stay safe, be smart.


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