Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Spring Cleaning

This is serious business ... time to sort!

The losers ... [booo]

The winners ... [yaaaay!]


And that is the conclusion of Spring Cleaning in my house in any form. I have a severe aversion to hyper-cleanliness, seriously ... shit is everywhere. Not actual shit ... I just mean I have so many freaking pairs of shoes and more clothes than a house full of Olsen twins. Not to mention the forty billion books I have and the not-so-secret room full of every conceivable manifestation of Halloween. Every single time a relative comes over, they offer to clean my house. I'm not insulted; I get it, I'm messy ... whatever. I'm not DIRTY ... that is just nasty. Everything is totally clean, there is just not anywhere really great to put it! I need an armoire and about 12 chests of drawers. Let me know if you're looking to get rid of anything ...

Friday, March 25, 2011

This Weekend Is Going To Suck ...

So, the 20 minute oral presentation was not nearly as bad as I thought it was going to be. I made a 110%!  I think I was more nervous than I should have been. The actual "defense" isn't until the last few weeks of class, so I have some time to freak out over that, which is just great.

Speaking of freaking out ... I have to write my entire paper this weekend!! I forgot about that whole [stupid] rough draft thing. I honestly do much better if I'm allowed to wait until the last minute, but doing a rough draft, having a peer review session, etc. just makes me doubt my final product. That seems backwards, I know. The incessant editing should  make me more comfortable with the final product, but it doesn't. So, I'm going to sit in front of the computer all weekend talking to myself, reading books and writing about George Whitefield and Jonathan Edwards. I will surely clean out the wine rack for this occasion!

This is my new stamp from Cookie. I plan on stamping Professor Ex [libris] on everything. 
Together, he and I will conquer this paper! ♥

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Some Bossier Butterface

Someone needs to tell the woman [or man] singing this song to SIT DOWN and KNOCK IT OFF!! Is she really singing the letters LOL and making hand gestures a la "2 Legit 2 Quit"?! I love that she is breaking this song out like "LOL" is something new and exciting that she just KNOWS is going to catch on ... its 2011, no one even types "lol" anymore! I'm not L'ing oh L ... I'm crying and barfing ... what is the lingo/hand sign for that? I'm C/B'ing all over myself. 

So ... this is from Bossier, right? I mean ... I'm pretty sure I've seen this bitch driving her Tahoe to the Rock 'n Rodeo [where this was clearly filmed] to meet up with all her equally depressing divorced 30-something friends for ladies night so younger guys who tan and wear Affliction to make it seem like they're "buff" instead of fat can bang them in the bathroom and hopefully meet up later at Buffalo Wild Wings to watch wrestling.

I fully believe that this is what those women think they look like when they're standing outside Superior Grill on Saturday night at 7, waiting 2 hours for a table, wearing white eyeliner and sucking down those margaritas in hopes of snagging a "hottie" and making all the "haters" jealous. 

This is real life. This shit exists ... and it's everywhere.

Friday, March 18, 2011

My Go-To Boots

I love boots, I really do! I wanted to post some more boots while I still have time. You know, before I get a tan and start showing off all my ridiculous sandals and peep toes! [definitely pedicure time ...]

Can you tell that I'm a little busy lately? I've been trying to post at least a couple times a week and that has been happening on the weekends mostly. The good part is my weekends are Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday! So, that leaves me plenty of time for HH goodness.

I've been working my thesis like crazy. I have a 20 minute oral presentation [no visuals or notes!] next week, so for the next few days I'll be walking around my house telling my cats and dog about the birth of Evangelicalism in the 18th century and how it became a uniquely American idea that shaped our nation's religious and social identity through fear and guilt. I think my pets might actually kill themselves this weekend!

In other news, these boots are amazing. I'm pretty sure I got them from VS, because I get a ton of my shoes there. I love that they are convertible, although I almost always wear them over the knee like this. These actually come just barely over my knee which makes them appropriate for all occasions. Actual thigh-high boots, which I'm not a huge fan of in heeled form are not appropriate for work, but these do just nicely.

I wear these with skirts, pants, tights, leggings, etc. The mid-heel height is perfect for all previously stated garments and social situations as well. I have a really high arch in my foot, so being flat on my feet all day is hell. These are really my favorite thing to wear when I'm running around town doing errands and stuff because the heel is high enough to please my arch and low enough not to kill my toes.

These are definitely what I would call a staple item. Don't build your wardrobe without them! And yes, I'm wearing red jeans! Whoop! Tomatoey goodness. Pair them with black boots and white flowy top to add softness  to the vivid color scheme.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

I call this the "Not a Frittata"

I learned about this dish from a friend of mine who recently hosted our Mardi Gras Candles & Cocktails. It is a really basic dish that is easy and really, really delicious. I added a couple of ingredients to it while I was trying it for the first time, but the basic recipe is still the same. I'd like to thank Glynda for showing this to me and for hosting the  ZC brunch so beautifully!  I hope you will try it and add a little spice to your next party.

You'll need:
classic 9x14 Pyrex 
18 eggs
1 clove garlic
about a tbsp of butter
1 cup shredded monterey jack 
1 cup shredded colby
2 cups shredded cheddar
9-12 green chilies [comes in a small can on the Mexican food ailse!]
diced bell peppers [to taste]
diced mushrooms [to taste]
pre-heated oven - around 375

Sautee the diced mushrooms and garlic in about 1 tbsp of butter until nice and cooked, then set aside. Slice the green chilies open and lay them flat to cover the bottom of the dish. Then add the cheeses in a thick layer, all together. Sprinkle with diced bell peppers [raw] and the mushroom mixture. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs, add Tony's, S&P and any other spice you might want [I used fresh Rosemary ... I always add Rosemary to eggs!]. Then pour the egg mixture evenly over the layered cheese/chilies/veggies.

Let this sit for about 20 minutes so the egg can get nice and settled. Then pop it in for about 25 minutes or until "golden bubbly." I use the "jiggle test" ... if it jiggles in the middle, it isn't ready yet! Serve with Tabasco sauce for an extra kick!

Voila! It was really great. I think Brandon ate about 1/2 this Pyrex! 
Haha. My man can eat! I try not to let the fact that he puts food away like a 
sumo wrestler and is still a 32" drive me nuts. It'll be good genes for our kids to get.

Gumbo Mumbo Jumbo

This is the ... 4th or 5th [?] year that we've hosted friends for the Highland Mardi Gras Parade. This year was really fun. I always cook too much! I will never learn that lesson and I'm not entirely sure I want to! I made a few new dishes this year, but my tried and true crowd pleaser is my gumbo. I think it might be one of my favorite things to cook [besides the rice ... I hate cooking rice; how boring!] and I think somehow it gets better and better each year.

Last year I made a quick, blonde roux and the gumbo was really "veggie-heavy." I think I did a 180 this year. I was bound and determined to have the darkest, meatiest roux possible and I think I achieved just that. If you don't know how to make gumbo, I suggest you give it a shot. No journey has been harder or solidified me as a good cook as well as the road to the perfect gumbo. I don't use a recipe, so it is a little different each time, but I think that is the fun of it. There are a few things that I consider must-haves for a good gumbo ...

1. A well done roux. I don't mean well-done like steaks ... and I don't mean a dark roux each time. I just mean that it needs to be done well. It is definitely a labor of love; a roux can be burned or under cooked and can simply ruin an otherwise good attempt at gumbo. Depending on where your fat is coming from, the roux can cook and taste differently. I love that. And that is why I never tell someone how to make roux. It is definitely something you have to do on your own! [Unless you don't even know what it is ... in which case, you're probably not a gumbo fan.]

2. Bay leaves. I'm not sure why or how, but I can tell if a gumbo isn't made with a few key spices. Bay leaves and cayenne are probably the easiest for me to spot missing, so make sure you have these if nothing else. Just don't forget to fish them out before serving! I have a bad habit of leaving them in.

3. Time. If you're making this in under 2 hours ... it's not gumbo. Ideally, if you're going for a real dirty gumbo, you want it to sit on some heat for a couple of hours after it is completed, not including the prep and cook time. A lighter gumbo can be done in an hour, but still needs to sit and really cook. Part of the appeal of gumbo is the fact that its an entire meal on its own. That doesn't magically happen, it takes patience.

4. Giddin's. As far as what goes in, do whatever you want! My favorites are andouille sausage, chicken, shrimp, oysters [heaven!], crab claws and crawfish. Sausage and chicken go well together. I almost always use shrimp, even if it is the only seafood added. Some people don't like to mix. They either pick seafood or meat, but that is the beauty of gumbo. As far as the veggies ... the holy trinity must be present and I like okra [not used here], lots of garlic, spice and seasoning.

Here are a few shots of the process and the parade. I was busy x10 that day, so I didn't get a chance to take a lot of pictures, but I did get a few!

a whole lot of chicken thighs, I'd say 3 or 4lbs.


Friday, March 11, 2011

The Archives

I've been working in the archives at Noel Memorial Library on campus for a service project the History Club is doing. I'm utterly fascinated. I'm not entirely sure how much I'm allowed to say, seeing as how they are not public records, but I'm preparing coroner's files, so it's pretty morbid. This of course means ... I absolutely love it. The records go back to the 20s! I could definitely sit in the back of a library somewhere going through old files or cataloging rare books for the rest of my career.

This will probably be where I do my internship next semester, so I'm glad I'm getting a head start on all of that. The stuff I'm getting to look at has really opened my eyes to how dangerous the world can be, but also how short and precious life is!

I have once again, saddled myself with entirely too much this year. I think I thrive under pressure!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Hell Yes, Forever!

This glorious majestic-ness is my dream wedding dress. It has been for about ... forever. Because even before Sarah Burton [of Alexander McQueen] designed it, I had always thought of a long sleeved wedding dress in cream lace. She just so happened to make my dreams come true a few years ago! Ashley Olsen wore it best in my opinion; her hair, minimalistic make-up and mega-dead lip color bring this hauntingly beautiful masterpice to its peak effectiveness.

RUMOR HAS IT that Miss Kate Middleton, soon-to-be Princess Kate [yes, I'll throw a party just so I can make that banner] has chosen this, or something similar for her nuptual ceremony to the charmingly balding Prince William. I say, have at it! And then, when Brandon and I have our re-wedding [we eloped!] I will grab my bouquet of black magic roses, hang that "All Hail, Princess Kate" banner and walk down the aisle with pride. You're [un]officially invited.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Knitting Club!

I've started a Teen Knitting Club at work! [the Library] Every Wednesday, a few "tweens" and I get together and I teach different levels of knitting. I could not be happier. I have to admit that I'm often disappointed in the way teenagers and children spend their free time. Most of the kids we see in the library are on Facebook for 6 hours a day and then  in the last half hour before closing time they say, "oh yeah, I have some homework ... tell me where this book is!" Lame! I'm really proud of the girls that have been coming to the club. Most of them have really caught on quickly. I hope that we will be able to continue this and maybe we'll be knitting Christmas gifts this Fall! If you know any teens interested in joining the Teen Knitting Club, let me know!

I love the neon needles!

We really do have a great & cozy time. Can't wait to see how our projects progress throughout the year! 

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Shoe post, sort of ...

New babies!! Got these bad boys since my Shox are pretty much ... blown [?] haha. I really like Nike, I have a narrow heel and a high arch, so these usually fit me really well. I'm saving up for some personalized Halloween Shox, but I thought I'd upgrade in the meantime so my feet would stop hurting halfway through a workout. They came with white laces, but since they are all LiveSTRONG-ish and yellow, I thought I'd turn them  into LSU shoes with the purple laces. Fun! They were on mega sale, so I'm pretty happy with the choice. I really wanted the orange Lunar Glides, but they are for men and I couldn't find them small enough. Ugh. Off to run now! And by run, I mean get on the elliptical and watch BONES reruns ...