Monday, May 30, 2011

what i did on my memorial day

bonnie the basil plant. the newest resident of 357
no work. all play. the rundown:
sleep in. thankfully our neighbors are home again, so the alarm that was bleeping at 7 AM without fail every single morning has stopped. hallelujah!!

reading all morning. east of eden is what i'm on right now, and holy cow steinbeck is a master!! i recommend it.

gym time. the great thing about summer is i can basically schedule my day around my 2 hours at the gym and it's heaven.

car wash. ha so it has been raining cats and dogs here the past, oh, 2 weeks, but today after a torrential downpour the heavens parted and the sun came. my poor car has been neglected, oh, it's whole life because i am usually too cheap to wash it. however, i found a coupon for a free car wash on our calendar, so i ran down to the gas station and got it all clean. much to my delight this wasn't some cheap car wash either- the coupon was for a free bag of ice or a deluxe 9 dollar value car wash. (seriously i want to meet the guy who chooses the bag of ice) it even waxed it. boo yah

good earth ie the store that changed my life. lately i've been reading a lot of vegan blogs. all the recipes call for weird stuff like chia seeds, arrowroot powder, and nutritional yeast. i had no idea what any of this stuff even was until i stepped foot into good earth this afternoon and wandered around the bulk foods section for a good hour. it's basically just your average high end, high priced organic/vegan/raw grocery store, but man did it suck me in... i will be back. with a list. i mean, who can pass up overpriced granola?

so. much. cooking. britni made stuffed peppers for dinner. after that we found a recipe for wheat thins and just HAD to try it out. then we had the urge to chop things, so we made pico de gallo.

yeah, i haven't left this kitchen since 7. it's definitely summer.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

a breakfast for the books

i eat  some oatmeal about every day. sometimes i mix it up, throwing in an apple instead of a banana, but mostly it's always oatmeal, yogurt, jam, a banana, and cinnamon to boot.
this morning i had to work early, so i was rushing around, but also making sure i had enough time to eat my breakfast, because  trust me, this girl doesn't EVER skip breakfast. (or really any other meal for that matter.)

i assembled it all, threw it in my favorite bowl (it tastes better that way) and dug in. i eat this every morning. i always know what it's gonna taste like.
however, this morning as i put the first spoonful in my mouth, something was wrong and i couldn't figure out what. i kept eating, not really thinking about it too much, just wondering if maybe i'd salted the water too much or something but the taste persisted. stronger in some bites, milder in others.
i was about 3/4 done when i brought a spoonful up to my face and the realization came to me as i studied it. those little flecks i'd sprinkled on top were definitely not cinnamon.
note to self: for full breakfast satisfaction, make sure the chili powder and cinnamon are not in identical spice jars.

ps. i finished it anyways.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

can't stop won't stop


it's kind of been the theme of my spring so far.
as you may or may not remember, my old roommate anita and i do some weekly cooking where we make a big feast. this week, the dish was chana masala, which is an indian chickpea dish. as i scanned the other day trying to figure out if i needed any last minute things, my eyes caught on one ingredient. garam masala. most of the time i am cheap when it comes to weird spices and just leave them out.
this dish was different. i mean, if the name of the dish has masala in it, i figured i should probably go ahead and buy some garam masala. the only problem was i had never in my life seen this in any spice cabinet i'd ever seen.

there was just one option. that option was to venture to the bollywood market. i was on a time crunch after work due to an OSHA meeting (more to come on that later) and some inconvenient construction off the provo exit, so i figured this little trip to india would be in and out. luckily i found a parking spot right outside so i parked, ran inside, and asked the lady where i could find garam masala between all the unfamiliar powders that lined the walls. she looked around, pulled it down, and told me it would be 2.99. alright, not bad. i handed her my card. she told me that, sadly, my purchase had to be over 5 bucks to use credit. my eyes quickly scanned the shelves as i tried to decide between different pastes and powders as the lady sang along with some good bollywood tunes. i grabbed a can of this and threw it down.
as i walked out, i looked a little closer at my recent purchase.
coconut cream? what in the world is that even used for?
needless to say, this little can has sparked quite some google search.

i will keep you all posted on my creation. hopefully it turns out. all i know is as i walked out all i could think was, man... that could have been delicious yogurtland instead of a measly can of creamed coconut... 

if it's good, great. if it's not, well, moral of the story is carry cash.

Monday, May 23, 2011


emily[rummaging for scissors]: i'm going to go steal some flowers. be right back!

"how do i guess the future? based on the omens of the present. the secret here is in the present. if you pay attention to the present, you can improve upon it. and, if you improve upon the present, what comes later will also be better. forget about the future, and live each day according to the teachings, confident that god loves his children. each day, in itself, brings with it an eternity!"
                                                         - the alchemist

i just finished this book last night, part of my summer reading list. it was so great, so weird, so unlike anything else i've read lately.  (and contrasts quite well with the ellen degeneres book on tape in my car right now... books on tape. life doesn't get much better.) next up on the list: joy luck club. then east of eden. emily tells me it's the best book ever. i trust her judgement.

i sat at work today dreaming of sunny weather. it has been raining here for about, oh, a good two weeks now. i am feeling like i'm living on the western seaboard, not provo utah. everything is green though! and i'm sure everyone with a lawn likes it.

after work i went to winco and only bought vegetables. and cottage cheese and gum. and kashi tlc granola bars, the best granola bars on this planet. seriously, try them. (but be prepared for a MAJOR jaw workout.) anyways, i bought some basil because this week i am making caprese salad and i am going to slow roast tomatoes and sit in my kitchen and savor every bite. that's what my calling is this summer. anyways, the whole way home from the grocery store i smelled my hands (but not in a weird way) because they smelled like basil and that is my favorite smell. it reminds me of the days of high school when we'd ride bikes to pie hole downtown and buy huge slices of red pepper basil pizza. man, we thought we were cool.

tonight i fried up some aubergine, which is a fancy word for eggplant. aubergine is just a better word. it reminded me of spain and how pili would always fry it up for me because she didn't know what else a vegetarian from the states ate. little did she know my first encounters with those beloved berenjenas was in spain. that blast from the past was definitely worth the 1.73 i paid for it. fresh produce= made of gold. i need to learn to garden.

time for the gym. did i mention i sold my soul for another three years at gold's? looks like i'm not moving any time soon... good thing i like that place.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

twenty things

while sitting at work today, reclined in my chair, answering phones and transferring to nurses, i was thinking about what exactly i have learned in my last twenty years of life. this is what i came up with, in between transferring calls from worried mothers wondering if pepto bismol could help their three year old's constipation.
1. its not smart to stick utensils in the toaster. or whole eggs in the microwave.
2. read lots of books
3. pray every day
4. find time for your friends far away. call them. 
5. shop the perimeter of the grocery store. eat your vegetables!
6. travel. don't think, just do.
7. wake up early. get up, dress up, show up. 
8. if you're going to make dessert, make dessert!
9. the squeaky wheel gets the grease, so speak up.
10. make your bed. every day.
11. facebook is not real life.
12. keep perspective
13. when the gas light goes on in your car, get gas.
14. never text in the shower.
15. always be game. 
16. be wary of blind dates
17. never use box color for your hair. 
18. buffets are never a good idea.
19. follow the speed limit. use your blinker!
20. never wear skirts over a hot air vent. unless you're trying to pull a marilyn. (which will happen)

Friday, May 20, 2011

a lunch realization and good company

bridget. corrin. marybeth. melissa. me. whitney. hannah. heather. oksana. 
these are my friends.... or family. who knows. my line between the two is becoming somewhat blurred seeing as i spend an upwards of 35 hours a week with these people and maybe 35 days out of the year with my real one. it is a good thing we get along.
anyways, these are my nurse/medical assistant /receptionist friends (well... the ones who are under 26 and can steal away at lunch... we left the grannies at the office ;) just kidding. they are cool too. they just had children to attend to or something.)
i would like to be able to tell you all that we just go out to lunch like this all the time. (what a posh life that would be) but most of the time at lunch we're heating up top ramen or leftovers or finding remnants of drug rep lunches past in the deepest confines of our stinky fridge. anyways, i digress. the reason we all gathered here today at the reverred cafe rio is because hannah is going on her mission. leaving us for florida. boo. (but really we're all really excited for her. all the young missionary boys are going to fall in love with her. literally and figuratively. but more literally.)
it was so good. if the food at that place wasn't amazing i wouldn't be blogging about it. the two best parts of todays trip?
1. call ahead ordering. no more lines of awkward couples caressing each other,  pre-order nerves or jitters, no more persuasions by the mexicans to get that extra side of guac. you just tell them what you want, they tell you to come pick it up in fifteen minutes. beautiful.
2. cafe rio is known for it's sweet pork salad, right? problem: i don't eat meat. and that tortilla they serve it in has about four hundred calories in it. and i have no self control and must ingest the entire thing in one sitting, of course. solution: tostada. just as much everything else except the tortilla and three dollars cheaper. are you kidding me? i think the heavens parted and the angels started singing when i came to this divine realization.
anyways the food was great. the company was hilarious. we all wore our scrubs for good measure.
i love my job.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

funniest thing all day

i just thought this was appropriate, seeing as i have three wedding announcements sitting on my fridge at this exact moment.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

we'll all float on okay

utah lake is a funny place.
when i was, oh- 10? 11? i went boating here with my family and almost capsized thanks to a freak storm and some torrential winds. let's just say my most vivid memories of a near death experience are linked to this mucky reservoir, and needless to say, my views on this lake are a little tainted. i hadn't been back since.
however, yesterday i was feeling a little restless, and finding this place via bike was on my list. sundays do that to me. many thanks to my gps for helping me get out there, the wind for not completely blowing me away, and the ticket girl at the gate for letting me in without paying after i promised i just wanted to ride around. (i think i could have taken her)
it was windy, flooded, and bleak looking, but charming nonetheless. plus i found the provo river trail, which doesn't really hold a candle to the boise greenbelt, but is an acceptable substitute. for now at least.

so i've been thinking a lot about this article lately. john huntsman and his comments in time. i am not much of a stars and stripes, red white and blue republican, but found his comments on being mormon a little unsettling, nonetheless. that was, however, until i read this article, and then got a good laugh at the comments. now where shall i cast my stone? ... i mean vote.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

red rocks and calf cramps

this is me getting artsy with my phone down in moab this weekend during the red rock relay.
what is this, you ask? a 70 mile relay split between 6 (in our case 5) runners down in moab, ut. pretty awesome, i might add.
we started at 9 am and passed the slap bracelet baton all day between two uncles, aunt, and cousin of mine. i ran two legs of the race, one at 7.2 miles, the other at 7.3. it was killer, but great times all around. while our runner was running we played water boy in the car, driving up a couple of miles, taking lots of unattractive pictures (this is a warning to you, carolyn. that ONE PICTURE you took is on lock) and eating clif bars, banana chips, and uncrustables.
ten-ish hours later we were finishing our race and i could barely walk. note to self: just because your socks have the nike swoosh does not mean they are running appropriate. good company, great scenery, and awesome atmosphere made for a satisfying weekend.
that and all the great food (minus the moab brewery. that place is crap) and a stay at green river's finest. five stars, baby.

 moab, ut. need to get back there. robber's roost? i'm thinking i'll pass.

park city, ut

last thursday britni and i followed the usual daily summer regimen.

me- so do you work today?
britni- no. do you?
me- nope. let's go somewhere.
britni- i don't have any money.
me- i'll drive. we won't spend any!

our travels took us to park city.
we laid on the grass and ate our picnic of assorted vegetables and peanut butter and mystery jelly from the fridge while discussing our dislike of pets and how we will make our kids eat vegetables.
when we had gotten our vitamin d we went up to old town and walked all over main street. we gave fashion advice to old granola women in an overpriced consignment shop and ventured into the family history center where the sister missionary tried to persuade us both to go on missions. we were barked at by an old man quite literally and pretended we were rich by trying on things at a boutique that boasted "nothing over 100 bucks" upstairs in their bargain area.
185 bones for this fur? pocket change.
our trip was not complete without a little pit stop at the outlet malls where i found some steals at gap... guess the no money spent goal was out the window. oh well.

and then we headed out of town.
in the wrong direction. before long britni was getting a little leary of my navigational abilities, wondering why had she "hadn't seen that lake before" and exclaiming things like, "wow i feel like we're in another country!" when i started seeing "ogden 35 miles" and "cheyenne exit ahead" i second guessed myself too. a little help from my gps and my fears were validated. we promptly turned around, and i patted myself on the back for my stupidity.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

happy mother's day

mostly i just couldn't resist posting this picture.
seriously, did the drug me for this picture? my dad's tie is probably back in style now. he could sell it to some trendy hipster for a couple bucks- i should tell him that. mom's dress, on the other hand.... no hope. none. zero. good try, ma.
i love my mom. she's the best and i wish i lived a little bit closer to her so i could see her more (and so she could drag my lazy behind out of bed and to the gym each day) she is wise and friendly and active and selfless. i want to be like her. i wish i was home to make her breakfast in bed and steal her chocolates at church. (guess i better pass those roles on to the siblings)
happy mother's day!

Saturday, May 7, 2011


sushi: check.
on friday night britni's friend took us out to yamato's for some raw fish. haha not really. (but kind of) i'd never eaten sushi before this, so i was a little hesitant and a little freaked, but nonetheless it was a good time, me trying to figure out how to use chopsticks, and then coming to a consensus that i should just go on the chopstick diet because i would starve (do they really only eat one grain of rice at a time?!)
i got veggie rolls and inari tofu pockets... only there was really no tofu in there to be seen.
brit got something with lobster in it.
jayson got calamari tempura. OCTOPUS!
we split em all, and i impressed myself with my carpe diem spirit. the calamari one was the best- it tasted like onion rings.
... maybe that means it wasn't really that authentic. however, the asian pop music was authentic. i know it. so was the gay asian couple at the table next to us, complete with their own asian baby! (their own lily) and the kimono worn by out waitress, complete with her authentic shape ups. (gotta get me a pair of those)
all in all, good times. sushi is a winner in this girl's books.

cinco de mayo

so it might be el siete de mayo, but i am a little lazy so let's pretend this was posted two days ago!
cinco de mayo= a good excuse to make more mexican food. and for all the hole in the wall mexican restaurants of utah to get more college student business. as i was going on a little run pre-cooking, i couldn't believe how people were just leaking out of every single mexican place around campus! (and was somewhat disappointed in everybody who was eating at any place OTHER than a taco shop)
anyways, i worked til 6. britni started work at 6. we fiesta'd at about 10 pm.
the menu, you might ask? take a looky:
 seven layer dip. all 7 layers! we didn't even skip and i even added the olives and tomato i usual really dislike
 mexican coke. a whole medio litro was completely necessary, and we managed to choke it down even though i am kind of partial to diet coke. with lime
 and we broke out the mustaches and i dusted off the drug rug. here i am just stoking my stache in utter ponderance. can i tell you how uncomfortable a mustache is? my upper lip was sweating and felt like a furnace. how do the bearded men do it?
 that gem of a ring doubles as a bottle opener. who knew? ps britni's mustache is just looking a little too real right about now...
and voila. the main event- black beans and sweet potatoes. it was so good, and totally worth the extra trip to smith's when i started cutting into the sweet potatotes and realized they weren't orange, but yellow.
what the heck who are these imposter sweet potatoes?
turns out the "sweet potatoes" i love so much are in reality yams. go figure.
all in all, it was a great day and i was proud to be an american celebrating a mexican holiday no mexicans even celebrate. if only i would have had a sombrero.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

what i've been up to

first off, happy birthday to the best little brother ever
seems like just yesterday the secretary was interrupting our bus ride to the botanical gardens when i was 7 to announce that i had a new baby brother. what good times it's been since then. happy 13th little paytey. i love you.
i think it is safe to say it's finally spring.
at least, that is what my sunburned shoulders are telling me. today i finally reconnected with some great provo trails and it feels so nice to get off of university blvd and onto dirt! our moab relay is next weekend... hopefully i am ready. and if not, well at least i can enjoy the scenery while i walk!
life is great. without the weights of school and homework my days have been real stress free and somewhat lazy. waking up without an alarm has never felt so nice. i've been getting called into work quite a bit (yay money) which keeps me busy, but between the nine to fives, there has been a lot of empty space to fill.
voids that have easily been filled with trips to yogurtland, which takes the cake for the best froyo in ALL the land, trips to the grocery store with britni- it's great to have a kindred spirit who loves buying produce as much as me- bike rides and reading and "borrowing" music from the provo library. this week's hot items? the outliers on book on tape, he's just not that into you (don't worry, i read it in about 3 hours... seriously every single girl should read it. i've never seen the movie, so who knows if it's the same thing) and retrato en sepia by isabel allende. out of respect for cinco de mayo tomorrow i'm gonna get my spanish on and read it in it's native language. yeah, probably biting off way more than i can chew, but i am gonna try.
speaking of cinco de mayo tomorrow i am so excited to cook and listen to my marachi band music and wear my drug rug all while drinking mexican coke imported right from south of the border.
it feels good to finally have some semblance of hobbies again.
i went to scratch my forehead and found it caked in dirt from my run, oh 2 hours ago. time to shower. til next time!