Friday, September 09, 2011

Walnut, Sundried Tomato, Feta, Basil Pesto!

Guten Tag Everyone! This week has been rain, rain, rain, rain and guess what... rain.  I thought our experience with hurricane Irene two weekends ago was enough rain and would allow for us to have some sun but nope.  Tropical Storm Lee just HAD to come over and ruin the sun party. I think we're going to be in the rain for a while.

Water for elephants. I've been meaning to read that book.
Last night called for something with pasta, chicken, and my about to go bad basil.  Since most pesto calls for fresh cheese (money money) and pine nuts (money, money, money) I decided to call my cheaper Costco friends (aka Feta Cheese and Walnuts) into action. 
Basil, Sun-Dried Tomato, Walnut, Feta Pesto! 
(This is what it is...)
Ingredients list:
  • 1 C. Sun-dried Tomatoes
  • 1 C. Water
  • 4-5 Chicken Breasts
  • 4 Tblsp. Olive Oil
  • 1 Lemon
  • 2 C. Basil
  • 1/2 C. Walnuts
  • 1/2 C. Feta Cheese
  • 3-4 Cups cooked pasta (just until firm)
 First off I boiled 3-4 cups of any type of pasta just until firm  and set that out of the way.
Boil the Sun Dried tomatoes in 1 cup of water for 10-15 minutes in a small sauce or skillet pan. RESERVE the water to help make the pesto smooth.
Show these Chicadees who's boss! Laying down the pounder!
For the Chicadee:
2 Tblsp. Olive Oil in a large skillet over medium heat
 4-5 Chicadee breasts pound and season them with salt (or use season salt given to you from your awesome brother) and use plenty of black pepper 
 1 lemon zested on the face-up side of the Chicadees 
Let these little babies cook until nice and brown on one side then flip and squeeze  lemon juice around them.
Good price for the basil from LA Mart $1.79 pound
Basil goes in head first then the sun-dried ta-maters with the reserved water that they were boiled in.

Then add 2 Tblsp olive oil and a few Tblsp of water only if it doesn't become smooth enough to blend well. 
After adding the feta cheese and it should look like this!

Then get any veggies that you like and give them a shower.
You can let them nest on top the chickadees while the chicken is browning. 
BEHOLD THE YUMMY Mountain of veggies!
Season them with salt and pepper too, no need to add any more oil, lots of flavors already from the Chicks.

Now the Chickadees are just waiting patiently in the background.

I just love the golden crisp crunch of browned chickadees!
After the veggies were done I heated the pasta and 1 cup of the pesto for 5 minutes in the skillet getting all the noodles coated with the pesto flavors. Then I combined the pasta and veggies in a big bowel to get everybody well acquainted with the pesto.


This makes plenty of leftover pesto that will keep for at least a week or you could freeze it too. I plan to spread it on breads or if I need a quick sauce later this week I'll use the rest.

There's nothing like tasty pesto on a rainy day.

Ms. Furry Fern is getting soaked!

Monday, August 15, 2011

This week begins on Monday!

This week is off to a great start! We woke up to breezy temperatures in the upper 60's which is much deserving of a walk to school work as you can gather from the picture! Now that my foot is back in order (got off the silly crutches last Monday) I can take long walks again. No running or leaping yet but I'm just really grateful and I have a new appreciation for having two working legs.

What I learned from this experience is I get cranky and moody when I don't exercise and I get seriously jealous of walkers, joggers, movers, shakers, bicyclists AND even roller bladders when I have a non-ambulatory lower limb. (I really don't care for roller blading that much, as it always results in my face hitting the ground.)

Hopefully we hang on to this new routine of waking up early to walk to work because it's a much more peaceful way to start the day.

Speaking of routines I'm doing fairly well on my list so far.  Mostly everything except keeping in touch with family and friends better.  Folks I need to work on that so bare with me and I'll come around someday. :)

I have to add something to that list because I've already started it. Learning Filipino or rather I should say Tagalog.  I've been studying Spanish and Tagalog with a free trial to Rosetta Stone.  So far so good! I'm thinking I should organize what I learn on this blog. Of course not "take it" from Rosetta Stone, however expand on what I've learned because there just isn't a whole lot out there for learning Tagalog online. Actually there's not even much out there to even pay to learn Tagalog. So maybe folks could learn with me if I post it up for grabs on the Webby.

Hmmmm something to get started on!


Monday, August 08, 2011

Throwing in the towel...

That is, throwing in the towel into my gym bag. ;)  Today is the start of a new exercise regime that requires goggles + swim cap + towel = swimming. This is all thanks to my silly slip down up and falling on my ankle last Wednesday during my lunch time jog.
This here is what it looks like today. Less swollen now and some of the bruising is going down but at least I have this picture to remind me not to make the same mistake ever again. This was just a bad birthday present to myself.

 So what happened you ask? I was enjoying my music and the beautiful weather just jogging along and leaping (because that's what I do) and my last leap just happened to be a bit further down than I had estimated so I landed straight on my ankle. Woopsie! A tremendous sharp pain shot through my body, some dark words were said, and I immediately laid down on my back cursing at the sky while holding my foot. Two people walked by but they were in their own world and even though I waved I guess they just didn't see me. A guy came over but he didn't really seem to want to help me up if I had someone else that I knew who could come and help, so he walked off.  I called Mark for help but he was in Target where there's no reception so I couldn't get a hold of him but luckily I've got some awesome friends at work and Emily came to my rescue. 

That evening I couldn't bare any weight on it and up until Sunday I was using crutches. On the upside of this Dr. Mark has been helping me A TON with getting around and all. I'm pretty much feeling super spoiled... PLUS I got to use all those fantastic motorized scooters at the grocery store. We were in Georgetown at Whole Foods (our first time there) and it felt like Disney World all over again riding along through the isles on the scooter. I was so shocked too, since DC has a reputation for being unfriendly, that everyone was so willing to help me reach for things and asking what happened and just so NICE. This was my first experience of folks being just really nice here in DC.

The thing I don't understand is when Mark and I are together a lot of older people ask "OH! Did he do that to you? "  Of course everyone's joking but I don't understand how people think of that as the first thing to say. That bugged me.

Anyways, I'm throwing in the towel on leaping for a few weeks but I have a feeling this incident is not going to stop me completely. :)

I read online to start off slow if you haven't been swimming for a long time even if your a regular land exerciser. I wonder if I can go for 30 minutes at least... Soon to find out! :)

Jen :~D

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Guess What!?!

So Mark and I have decided that there's one solution to the problem of living in this stressful, high market price housing area, that is beginning to really wear on me and making me a sour puss....


So guess where our favorite location is and I'm going to do anything and everything to get us jobs there?!?!

Hint.... it's a mile in one direction.

Thursday, July 14, 2011


That's right. I'm DOing scuba and loving it! I feel like this is the only big preparation part for our underwater wedding for September 30th. Stress free awesomeness. Tonight is my 2nd class for the book work, lessons and quizzes. Yikes! I cringe at the word "quizzes", even though it's not actually difficult because afterall there's a set of 12 year old twins in my class, but still I LOATH that word.

Last Saturday was my first time with all the gear on in the pool. My classmates rock so that makes the time go by fast and there's so much to learn from safety stuff to just simply how to swim with fins on.  Ok, so if you don't like to get in water I think everyone should at least try wearing fins.  It makes you feel like a kid again because it's just so hilarious to feel how awkward it is to walk in that floppy foot wear.

Anne keeps throwing great suggestions for wedding attire and this swim cap in white is one of them.

We're not going to have a huge party in Costa Rica but there will need to be some type of dessert SO Anne came up with these little guys as wedding toppers . So cute! Too bad we won't see penguins in Costa Rica though.
So becuase we're diving we'll have to let these characters swim in a dessert such as flan. Filipino flan because that's the best! I bet we could find some Filipino's in Costa Rica who can let us borrow their kitchen to make flan... hmmmm....

Only a day and half more to go till the weekend! Last weekend was SUPER busy but this weekend only has Mr.Potter on the agenda...

Ciao ciao for now!

Jen :~D

Wednesday, July 06, 2011


A good start to anyone's birthday is seeing a parrot in the pilot's seat. So Mark, your 26th year is off to a grand start!

- I even got a fast snapshot of this so pic coming soon. -

This morning on the way to work (we drove today because it's a rainy one) we saw a live parrot on the hand of a man who was driving somewhere. Somewhere that looks fun because he had some kayaks and a parrot on his hand. How cool is that! I wouldn't have noticed this phenomenon if it wasn't for the fact that we just got back from small town Decatur where we discussed the importance of looking at people traveling in cars because more than likely you'll see someone you know. I guess I was still in that mind set and glanced over to see if I knew the person with kayaks on their car.

So tonight we're celebrating Mark's Birthday with a BBQ of meat on top of meat. Tim and his friend Prince (who grew up in Austria ;) ) are over and they've been cheffing it up like Culinary Institute of America students should. I bet Mark can't wait for the meat feast tonight! (Sadly JJ has to work so he will get the left overs :( ) I will do up a spinach salad because I think we need some greens on the table and nothing screams summer like a salad.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

I'm Hummmm .... gry

The task of deciding what's for dinner never fails to be challenging.  I think it gets tougher whenever you ask yourself "what sounds good tonight".  I usually ask that to Mark and last night his response was


That sounds easy enough right? Well it just comes down to the fact that he's easier to please than me.

I've been using four websites for recipes lately:

These all have great recipes that are usually pretty healthy and they always have a few 30 minute meal options or budget friendly meals. There's also this fun app for iPizzle called the dinner spinner. I usually use that as my last resort because it typically brings up lots of recipes that overdose on butter and cheese. Don't get me wrong, I love butter and cheese but we just can't eat it every night.

Bingo! Just had an idea, Sweet and Sour Chicken it is problem solved.  This is great because Mark will get his rice and I will use our soon to be rotting pineapple that is sitting so prettily on the table. 

I've kinda created my own version that requires no frying of the chicken (to make it a tad bit healthier).

Pucker Punch Chicken 
(a lot less calories than your typical take out)
Makes 9-10 servings
  • Preheat your oven to 375 F
Get out that long jelly roll sheet pan and put some parchment paper on there; then lightly oil it.
  • 5 Chicken breasts - cut into nibblets about 1" or so
  • Beat 2 eggs in a separate bowl 
In a large plastic ziplock baggy mix:
  • 1.5 Cups all purpose flour + 1 tsp baking powder + 3 Tblsp Corn Starch + 1/2 tsp Salt
          + 1 Tblsp pepper

Coat handfuls of chicken with the egg and then place in baggy.  Seal bag with air and shake till everybody inside has a nice jacket of flour. Little by little place nibblets on the baking sheet with as little excess flour as possible.

  • 1/8 C. Olive Oil and a pastry brush to give those little guys a brushing before they take their naps in the oven.

Turn the heat up to 425F and bake for 15 minutes, then turn them about with a spatula and back the temperature down to 375F to bake for another 20 minutes or until golden like a goose egg.

While they're baking chop the following into 1-2" chunks:

  • 2 bell peppers
  • 2 onions
  • 2 carrots 
  • 1 pineapple sides cut off and cored

  • 2 heads of broccoli; chopped and set aside if you like it to have a crisp crunch, otherwise you CAN throw it in there, but I don't recommend it.
Sautee all those chopped up beauties in 2 Tblsp olive oil, salt and pepper to bring out their FLAY vors.
(I wonder if Bobby Flay from the Food Network plays a lot with that word. If not I should get credit for producing catchy advertising for him. :)

In a separate Sauce pan mix:
1.5 Cups Water with 1 chicken bouillon cube (Or 14 oz of chicken broth)
1/2 C. Apple Cider Vinegar
3/4 C. Sugar
3 Tblsp Honey
Bring these to a boil then turn off the heat
Whisk 1/4 C. Cornstarch with 1/4 C. cool water in a small bowl then add slowly while stirring to the sauce. Return the heat to low and just stir enough not to let it stick to the pan. It should thicken after 10 minutes.  Cook until it is almost as thick as maple syrup.

After all the veggies are caramelizing nicely then add the broccoli (I put a lid on it to sort of steam them for 7 minutes).

You might need a bigger bowl or pot but nevertheless throw the sauce over the veggies and add the chicken nibblets VOILA! DINNER. And it's a ton healthier than the take out kind. 
Like the restaurant bell sound when a dish is done.

Yesterday was a no exercise day. Everybody needs a day off and mine just felt like it needed to fall on a Tuesday.
Can't wait till Friday! We're leaving for Decatur Illinois! WOOT!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Byyyyyy Doggies!

Byyyy Doggies is the expression that my Grandpa always says when he's excited. For right now I've been scouting dog adoption websites and that's what I'm saying!

I've been nagging Mark about getting a puppy for, oh let's see, EVER, since we moved back to the states. I love all dogs big ones, small ones they're all great and I'm not too picky about which one we'll try to get but I do think that with our tiny apartment we need a pup who isn't going to grow to be too large. SO Mark's favorite dogs are pugs! I even sport a shirt that has a pugster on it so I think we're probably going to end up with one of those guys.  BUT in the mean time I found this little gem ...

LEXIE the TINY (I'm going to change her name to Lexie the Great!)

She's as cute as a button and I'm in love! It's a lot to decide though whether to get a dog right now. We certainly have enough people to take care of her with JJ living with us so that's not an issue. The question is do we get a puppy and train him or do we get an older short haired friend that is more set in his/her ways?
Bonus is Lexie here is old enough so that we wouldn't have to train her.  :) AHHHhhhh I want Lexie the Great so bad! (PLEASE nobody snatch her just yet until I talk to Mark about whether we can get a pup right now or not...pretty please!)

Are you a cat person or dog person?  I'm actually both but I just have bad allergies to cats but so far haven't had any problems with pups.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Dill Dill-y-ogurt!

This is the recipe I was talking about that is way better than any Ranch dressing on the market and it will leave you feeling satisfied and guilt free!

Get your chopping board out and a large bowl
1 peeled cucumber chopped
2 minced garlic cloves
1/4 red onion diced
4 sprigs of dill leaves chopped
Place all the above in your bowl and  then squeeze
1 lemon
2 cups of Low Fat Yogurt in
then mix everything and
Salt and Pepper to taste

We put this over seared salmon the first night and then I used it on salad the whole week.  Also a great dip for veggies and crackers.  I got the idea from the sauce I make for Gyro's where all the ingredients are the same but instead I use cilantro.


Where did June go?

(POST FOR JUNE 22nd late because I keep having computer issues)
So since yesterday was the longest day of sunlight in the year I thought it seemed funny that June feels like the shortest month of the year. To me it has literally FLOWN by. Probably it has to do with Kristin (my suite/house mate from university) has a wedding fast approaching and I'm excited to get back to the Midwest to see family and friends for a split second.

The window washers are here!

Twice a year we get our windows washed for this luxurious high rise.  SSA takes up 17 floors in this 26 story building and Department of Defense and Justice take up and share the rest. Of course they have plenty of other locations too. The agency doesn't pay a whole lot of rent to park ourselves in this building but rather they charge $120 PER month (which the price is suppose to rise again soon) for parking in the underground garage.  Thank goodness we can walk 25 minutes to work and if we have to drive there's street parking about 10 mins walk away. Shooo I wish I owned the parking garage because that's a ton of cars!

We've been eating spinach like crazy lately! Basically we've been going through 2.5 LBs a week! A few months ago we discovered CostCo's huge spinach sucker and it has made life SO easy when it comes to getting some greens in the good ol' belly.  Popeye would be so proud! (Whatever happened to the sailor man anywho? I haven't seen him pop up for a long while now.) Since we go to the Korean/Indian "Lotte/Assi" market every two weeks I stock the cart full of delicious toppings for salads and such.  We scored a bundle of dill for $1.49 and I've been putting it in everything. I made dill pickles, and a homemade yogurt dressing that tastes even better than any ranch dressing on the market. At any of the big name grocery stores here (Giant, Safeway, Harris Teeter) it'll run you about $2.99 for a small package of dill (small meaning probably thickness of four fingers put together) and at Lotte you get a bundle almost the size of your head. (Ok a bit smaller but SO much more for the buck.) I'll put my Dill Dillyogurt recipe up. This has been my lunch for three days in a row at work: 
I love veggies and fruit together in salads and we grilled this weekend so I had leftover chicken with delicious Rudy's Rub everywhere.  ANG SARAP SARAP! (Filipino saying for tasty) If you don't know Rudy's BBQ it's from San Antonio Texas (where Mark is from) and it is the best out there by far.  The seasoned rub has a deep smokey flavor already and then you grill it and POW! Right in your face! Whenever his Mom comes over we always ask her to bring some for us.
A few weeks ago our scuba gear arrived! So exciting. I'm taking lessons in July once we get back from DECATUR ILLINOIS! YAY- I can't wait to go home!!!!!

Friday, June 10, 2011

And the Beautiful Weather Came Back!

Since Tuesday the weather here has been ridiculously HOT! For much of the country I guess it's been like that but boy I was sure glad to see that rainstorm roll in last night. Now it's cool and Mark and I are going to go for hike.  This time we're not going clear out to the Shenandoah area and we're going to stay local to DC and visit the Great Falls area. 

Towards the end of my time in Korea I went hiking every weekend with some girlfriends and I came up with a delicious treat that not only tastes delicious but fuels your energy.  I call it my Hika-Wrap. Now we did some pretty intense all day hikes, that including climbing rocks and ropes so we needed something that was going to boost us to the top. I've been debating whether to make it because it has a lot of calories and I don't think we're going on a very strenuous hike tomorrow but here's the recipe anyways:

Serves 4 Hungry Hikers

 HINT: This tastes SOOOOOOOOOOOOO Good if it sits in your fridge over night! All the flavors become best friends!

What you need:
2 C. Pear or apple chopped (you can peel if you want, I like roughage)
2 C. Granola Cereal
1/4 C. Chopped nuts

2 Tbsp Honey
3-4 Tbsp Lemon juice (half a lemon)
1/2 tsp cinnamon

4 Soft Large Flour Tortilla Wraps
8 Tbsp Nutella
8 Tbsp Crunchy Peanut Butter 

What you do:

In a medium mixing bowl combine chopped pear, granola and nuts.
In a small bowl mix honey, lemon, and cinnamon until well mixed.
Slowly fold the honey/lemon mix into the pear granola mix.

Spread 2 Tbsp of each Nutella and PB on each wrap making sure you work from the outside edges in. Then plop 1 Cup of the delicious filling in the middle.

roll like so:

Fold left part of circle in at the same time as right to meet in the middle. Hold with fingers then with thumbs take the bottom of the circle and fold up and roll. Press the edge together and secure with a toothpick.

Wrap in wax paper and keep in fridge until hiking time.

Enjoy with nature and after eating some sliced veggies!
Please no complaints if this sounds high in calories. I warned you at the beginning. Besides it's basically a nutella treat! :)

Now since I'm hiking tomorrow I'm having second thoughts about going to my exercise class tonight... so I can get an early start making these suckers!


Tuesday, June 07, 2011


(That word just makes me want to fall asleep... maybe I need to get my priorities in check)

I can't say I have ever been very great at routines. Unfortunately success comes only with routines therefore I need to change and get ROUTINED! YEAH Routine!!!! WOOO HOOO!!!!

Blogging requires routine. That's not really my forte as you can see with my sporadic postings but it is on my list of future routines that I'd like to keep up! Right now Mark and I are waking up early and jogging so hopefully that routine sticks better than blogging. So far two days out of three we've managed to find our feet on the dewy morning pavement. We'll see come the weeks end what this new routine brings.

For me it's easiest to be come obsessed with something rather than get in a routine. Perhaps it's my inability to multitask unless it's for one outcome or goal. When I lost a bunch of weight in Korea I was obsessed with running. That was a "one goal" sort of moment in my life. Living alone in another country toke me away from typical distractions, such as fast food driving and eating at the same time and getting persuaded by those late night chocolate commercials. (It helped to live in a country where I didn't understand "smooth, rich dark chocolate" when they say it.) Everyday was scheduled around my jogs and I would even pray for it not to rain and I had a full face mask while wearing 4 pairs of socks for the winter time jogs. I know I was obsessed but  it did lead to success and I lost a ton of weight. One of the best things my obsessive behaviour brought was my success with music. While playing flute or piano I'm concentrated on so many aspects; timbre, tone, positioning, posture, and the list goes on. Nevertheless, I can seem to manage that type of multitasking as it is for one outcome, great music.

For right now I'm trying to break my obsessive behavior over one thing and get into a routine of multiple goals. This is a challenge for me but it's got to be done.

So far the goals are:

  • Exercise for at least 30 minutes/ 6 days a week -Thank God for Zumba to help me with this!
  • Prepare healthy meal ideas a week in advanced - Mark is helping with this one
  • Cut and use more coupons -And believe it or not he's helping with this one too!
  • Read one book a month
  • Keep in touch with family and friends more
  • Study Spanish
  • Keep current with German news (don't want to lose what I know of that language)
  • Play my flute and piccolo
  • Save money for a piano
  • Write in this blog
  • Spend more time outside -Soak up that vitamin D Jen!
  • Enroll in school to get my Masters in Education

I'm going to print this out and keep a copy up at home and at my desk to help me stay focused and hopefully I can get myself obsessed with more than one of these goals at a time. Routine baby! Here I come!!!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Three Cheers for Chai!

In the early morning it's coffee and coffee alone that will awaken me from my zombified swagger into work. I don't know what I'd do without it. Plus I love the taste.

However in the afternoon especially around 2 o'clock I just need a simple pick me up but I don't want to visit any coffee shops because their brew is overpriced and typically burned anytime after 12pm. This is where I turn to chai. Also because it's a lesser amount of caffeine.

One day on a trip up to NYC to visit Mark's university friends Pallavi (Pallu) and Sham, (an extremely entertaining couple because of their sarcastic humor) my whole life was changed. Especially for the 2 o'clock sleepies that is. Pallu gave me some tips on Indian spices and told me a good recipe to use for making a dry powder masala (mix) for chai. When living in Austria a friend of mine, Ginni, gave me a great recipe for chai over the stove but I can't really bring together all the spices like that at work so to hear that I can pinch this powder into some tea, milk and sugar was just the cat's meow! She inspired me to find a spice market and I picked up a jar of chai masala. I have had it for over a year now and I use it at least once a week but it looks like I never touched it. It's SO delicious! But the small container in this picture is actually the masala that Pallu's sister had made. I haven't used it for a long while because it's the best ever so I'm trying to save it. I forgot one thing though. The pepper in her blend has such a kick. I pinched one too many pinches of that stuff and WOW was I in for it!

 Now maybe some folks won't enjoy chai with earl grey as it may be too perfumed for some but I love it as the base for my chai. Just a simple black tea of any kind works. I hope I can dig up that chai recipe from Ginni... I THINK I know where it is.

What do other folks do with they get the afternoon sleepies?

Coin Machines are fantastic!

(Posted one day late because of technical difficulties)

Last night (Monday night) it was time to take the pennies in for a spin so we walked down to the neighborhood grocery store in Shirlington and dropped 816 pennies into the Coinstar and screamed Hallelujah!

Now what is the best thing to buy with these pennies turned into dollars?


So there we were perusing the ice cream isle which is really a place that I avoid at all costs becuase ice cream is my ultimate weakness.  Cake, Cookies, Candy... y'all got nothing compared to the creamy frozen deliciousness that surfaces the streets and picnic tables in the spring and summer.  If it's in the house I tend to want to eat it everyday, anyday, anytime, so we tried to get something that was more or less in individual servings but seeing that we were at one of the most expensive chain grocery stores, Harris Teeter, their selection for individually wrapped ice cream sandwiches and bars where TOO expensive ($7 for a box of 5 bars)... Silly DC prices....

After spending 10 minutes in the ice cream isle alone we settled on the Blue Bunny brand ice cream which had a 2/$5 sale. We went from a pretty standard rule of no ice cream in the house to 2 boxes of ice cream sitting in my freezer just to taunt and tease me.

Now you're probably thinking why are you telling me about your ice cream purchase. Well there is a story. This was the first time I test spooned this famous Blue Bunny ice cream where everytime there's a sighting in the store Mark shouts excitedly "Blue Bunny ice cream is from Texas!"  Even one time he suggested it to a lady at Walmart saying "Yeah, that ice cream is great because it's from Texas!"
We took our time walking back home and a mile later the ice cream was halfway melted. I dished it out fast and sampled it slowly thinking gosh this is good ice cream! Go Texas!

Later this morning I looked online to find out that this tasty ice cream is made in Le Mars, Iowa. The fact is Mark was thinking of Blue Bell ice cream which is from Brenham, Texas. 


Tah Dah! I finally caught him doing a false claim to fame for Texas! I'm only excited about this because he's always bragging about how things from Texas are godsent (which they are actually) AND he's always catching ME in action for making false claims of fame for Illinois. (There are a number of things that I thought began in Illinois or even in Decatur and I'm ususally wrong...)

Well anyways Good work Iowa! Blue Bunny is on the top of the list for ice cream and a good price. Now we'll see if that list changes once I actually get a real taste of Blue Bell ice cream.
Turns out today at work our building is giving out a free scoop of ice cream in exchange for a survey. Ice cream is EVERYWHERE!!!!! YAY!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

To Blog or Not to Blog?

How to begin blogging once again..... ….. …… ……………………………. Ah Hah!

As I took a hiatus for oh... let's see .... a few years, I have this notion that I should really start keeping a blog trail of my mappings so that family and friends might know my whereabouts and musings. Since we’re so far from my home in central Illinois (where my immediate fam is), I feel like this might be a way to reach you guys aside from cell phones and e-mails.

To catch other readers up Mark and I surrendered our plans to move to Taiwan and we’ve now settled in the Land of the Free’s capital. Moving over here without a job led us to send an amazing 1 million resume’s out to explode into the black hole of cyber space before we finally landed jobs. Now we are living life to the fullest. Friends and family keep visiting and we go visit them as much as we can. We saved up time and money to make a trip to Europe where Mark put a rock on my finger that’s so heavy I can hardly raise my hand above my head. Now let’s override the nitty-gritty of catching up and just begin with this weekend for right now. (Speaking of “nitty” makes me think of Aunt Anne and her knitting. I wonder if there’s anything gritty about knitting? his is also a great cue for Grandpa to make a knitty joke.)

On Saturday Mark and I went with a bunch of friends to King’s Dominion, a theme park that is owned by the Cedar Fair Entertainment Company which also owns King’s Island in Cincinnati, OH, where my family always frequented when we were kids. (Thank you Aunt Betty and Uncle Tim for discovering such an awesome place!)

 Everyone met at our place early in the morning and we packed a picnic to be devoured for lunch. Some of the roller coasters looked daunting but Mark and most of the gang went on EVERYTHING. We had a fantastic time and we felt EXHAUSTED by the end of the day. The whole group walked into Chick-fil-A like zombies decidedly thinking that man we’re not as young as those teenagers we saw at the park.

Back: Susmita, Emily, Megan
Front: Mark, Me and Adam

Sunday morning Mark and I went to see the movie Rio in Old Town Alexandria. Now you’re probably thinking, who sees a movie on a Sunday morning… Well we do it to save $$. AMC Theaters around the nation offer cheaper priced tickets ($6 where we are as opposed to the usual $11) everyday of the week. We were planning to go this Sunday morning because it was suppose to rain. It ended up being a really sunny morning but we went anyways and laughed our heads off at the amazing film. If anyone knows of any nation-wide deals please share!

In the mean time on Sunday Grandma and Mom were in Valparaiso, IN watching my cousin Emily graduate from university! GO EM!!!! I’m so proud of you!

Aunt Betty and Emily
Mi Madre and Emily