Monthly Archives: May 2010

Oh How I Love Massages

I’m kind of a strange person.

I am not a big hugger.  I hate the fake cheek kissing that has become so normal these days.  I am not affectionate.  I get uncomfortable when people get too close to me (outside of my husband).

However… I love getting massages.  LOVE. IT.

Everytime I get a massage, I vow to make it a somewhat regular thing and never follow through.  A part of it is the hassle of going to a spa (this is also why I didn’t cut my hair for nearly 2 years).  Another part is the expense.

Back in March, a lovely blogger posted a contest on her page.  She was recently licensed as a masseuse and was giving away 2 free massages.  Obviously I entered and I was pleasantly surprised that I won!  And it took me nearly 2 months to cash it in!

So if you live in Baltimore, I highly recommend that you set up an appointment with Claire Taylor.  She operates out of her adorable row home near Patterson Park (but also out of a spa in Hampden).  She also has a frequent customer deal (when you purchase X amount of massages, you get one 50% off).  I will definitely be returning… especially at the end of June.  June is setting up to be an incredibly hectic month for me with the BAZILLION home repairs that are about to take place.

Also – you should check out Claire’s blog.  She posts lots of cute finds on Etsy, fun art finds and great fashion finds.

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Green Wine in Tetra Pak Packaging

I was piddling around a wine store the other day just because May has turned into the month of drinking lots.  I’m not sure what has brought this on but all of a sudden – I want red wine ALL THE TIME.

I’ve had a good experience with sulfite-free wine (purchased at Bin 604 in Harbor East) but haven’t had much luck locating any other sulfite-free wines elsewhere.

The particular wine store that I patronized had an article posted about sulfites and whatnot and yet the salesperson STILL couldn’t point out which ones were free of sulfites (I did an intense search of flipping over bottles and didn’t see a single one). 

When I can’t find a sulfite-free red wine, I tend to go for labels.  I picked up a fun looking one called “Red Velvet Devil” (it was a toss between that one and one called “Boom Boom” all by the same winery) and as we were checking out, I noticed a group of wines in these interesting packages (Tetra Paks).  The other thing that caught my eye was the $5 price tag.

I ran over to the table and asked the salesperson about the wine and she said it was great but unfortunately nobody was buying it because they were leary of the packaging.  So they marked it down.  I picked up 2 packs of the Green Path Shiraz:

Image of the Green Path Shiraz Wine package

Image of the side of the Green Path Shiraz wine package

Image of the size of the Green Path Shiraz wine package

The wine doesn’t seem to have its own website but I linked to an article above regarding its announcement.  Apparently Whole Foods carries this wine (unless you’re in Maryland when stupid alcohol laws prohibit the sale of alcohol in grocery stores).

So if you see it – try it!  I just wished I would have picked up ALL they had available!  $5 is a steal.

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My Husband is a Nerd

Do you remember these “magic sticks”?  They polluted my city and high school during the 90s.  These and hacky sacks.

We wandered into a store today and my husband gravitated toward these sticks and displayed his “awesome skills”.

<img src=”http://img408.yfrog.com/img408/1661/18p.th.mp4″ border=”0″ alt=”Free Image Hostin
g at www.yfrog.com”>

Upon seeing this, Kristin turned to me and said, “If you guys had met long ago, I think this union probably would have never happened.”

She is so right.

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Pizza Face!

I had always thought that the older you get – the further from weird teenage awkwardness you are…

Apparently I was wrong.

I’m not sure what the f is going on but I’ve had an acne epidemic!  And I don’t think you understand, blogosphere… I never broke out before.  Having 1 pimple on my face was rare.  And I was blessed with this until recently.

I currently have 4 pimples on my face.  4 very large pimples.  4 pimples that Jeremy loves to look at (because I never had the problem before).

It has sent me into a panic.  I went to the store to pick up a zit cream… something I’ve never purchased before.  And I stood in the aisle dumbfounded as to what to purchase.  I looked at Jeremy and said, “Help me!  I’ve never bought this stuff before.  What does this even mean?!”

I picked up Neutrogena’s On-the-Spot Acne Treatment

I used it last night with decent results.  2 of my pimples went down and one of them turned into a whitehead.  So I popped it (not even thinking about it… because in case you’ve missed the point of this post, I’ve never really dealt with pimples before).  And now I have a giant red, scabby spot on my head (thanks to popping it).

Any good pimple tips?!  I hate this so much.  I don’t know what is causing this (I’m sure it has nothing to do with the 10+ hour days I’ve been working lately…)

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How I Scored in the Bake Off

Well son of a bitch. I didn’t win. I didn’t even place top 3!

The winners?
#1 – Chocolate truffle cake. It was good, sure… but it was a little too rich. I couldn’t eat more than a bit and I love chocolate.

#2 – Baklava. Okay – this was fantastic. The woman that made this is Greek and she made it all from scratch. In fact, I voted for this dessert.

#3 – Mixed berry fruit crisp.  This was good too.  It tasted like jam.  Someone noted that me and this particular baker split the fruit dessert vote. 

Lesson learned?  Make a chocolate cake next time.

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Bake Off!

My department at work is hosting a “team building” function this week.  The function includes recreational sports/activities (no thanks), a trivia contest (yes please) and a bake-off.

Being the incredibly competitive person I am… strike that.  Being the UN-athletic incredibly competitive person that I am, I entered the bake-off.  I had recently come across a vegan dessert that looked amazing (vegan fruit tart) and decided to try my hand at baking something pretty.  This also gave me the opportunity to use the tart pan that I HAD to have when I was getting married… and have never used in the 3 years I’ve been married.

Because I’d never made this dessert before, I did a trial run last week.  My tester was Jeremy.

I mixed the crust in my food processor:
Vegan Tart Crust

I smooshed the crust into the pan:
Vegan Tart Crust - ready for filling

Vegan gelatin / fruit topping (what makes it vegan is the Agar flakes… and you find this in the Asian food aisle in Whole Foods. Or at least that was what a very frustrated Jeremy told me when I asked him to pick up the ingredients at the grocery store last week.):
Vegan gelatin stuff

Assembly (the fun part… although slicing the fruit wasn’t fun):
Assembling the Vegan Tart

Assembling the Vegan Tart

Vegan Tart - pre gelatin

The gelatin topping makes everything so shiny…
Vegan Fruit Tart - post gelatin

Vegan Fruit Tart

Want a slice?
Yum!

Think I have a shot at winning? I doubt I’ll win on flavor (although the verdict from Jeremy was that it was VERY good… but I’m going against a Mississippi Mud Pie and chocolate always wins over fruit). But I think I have a good shot at presentation.

What would you enter into a bake off?

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Shower Season

I have hit the shower season… and I’m not talking about rain here.

There are a number of weddings coming soon as well as babies!  So that means bridal and baby showers are all around.

2 weeks ago, I attended to shower of my good friend’s future sister-in-law.  And I realized that I haven’t gotten sick of wedding stuff yet (despite being married for 3 years).  I still love all the little details and games that go into showers.  I think people should just host these type of parties more often.

… graduation from graduate school shower.

… finishing p90x shower.

… hooray its Friday shower.

You get the point.  Anywho – here are some pics from the shower…

Kristin made these fantastic favors – chocolate covered pretzel sticks. It was a shame that it was so frickin’ hot that day because these bitches melted so quickly outside. But they were still delicious.
Bridal Shower Favors

The shower was hosted at a restaurant in Cockeysville:

Bridal Shower Menu
Pretty Centerpiece

Shower details that I love…

In lieu of a guestbook, the bride’s sister made this adorable heart cutouts and attached them to pipe cleaners. The guests were instructed to write a piece of marriage advice for the couple and then place them in the vase. So cute.
In Lieu of a Guestbook

Games!

My pal snapped some photos of the bride & groom “emoting” (it is our favorite thing to do. You have everyone stand for a photo then yell some crazy emotion or situation and have the people react or “emote” and snap the photo quickly. Try it – it is a lot of fun). Guests had to match the picture with the emotion.
Bridal Shower Game

One of my favorite games is “toilet paper bride“.
Toilet Paper Bride Contestants

The “bride” on the left looks like she’s wearing an adult diaper… but she’s actually supposed to be in a wedding bikini.

Our bride is in the center.  Her look?  Las Vegas Drunk Wedding.  She’s a stripper getting hitched!

And we won! Team Photo:
Oh girl... what was THAT?!

I have no idea what the team is “emoting” (well actually only the bride and my friend are emoting)… so let’s guess. 

What emotion/situation are they displaying above?

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