Sweet Home Santa Barbara

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Friday, December 30, 2011

Friday Facts - Part 4

1. Proof of my line dancing adventure:

Can you tell I have no idea what I'm doing? I look like a natural, right? 

2. It's this girl's birthday on Saturday:

So in honor of her last week of being 6, I get to put a bunch of pictures of her right here:

I really love this girl.

3. Remember the San Francisco trip that I mentioned here? Well I picked a date. I will officially be road tripping to San Fran for the three day weekend in January, and I could not be more excited. New Year's resolution: stop saying that I want to do things and just do them

4. I am officially 22 1/2 as of yesterday. Happy half birthday to me!

5. I forgot how much I love this show:

Seriously, I love it. Watching this show will make any day better. If only I could just jump into the show and be bffs with these people. I think my friends and I would get along just perfectly with them.

6. There are wayy too many desserts at my house right now. If someone could come eat them, I would greatly appreciate it. Kthanks.

7. I said I'd post a recipe this week, so here it goes. The pic is of my left overs (because I didn't plan ahead and take the picture before) and  I may or may not have made up the recipe. But it was delicious, healthy and fast. Can you tell this is amateur hour? No judging allowed. 

Tomato Zucchini Soup

Organic Vegetable Broth (I used 2 1/4 cups)
1 can diced tomatoes (Mine was with basil, garlic and oregano)
1/2 Zucchini (Yupp, that's right. 1/2)
Asiago Cheese

1. Cut the zucchini into slices, and cut the slices in half. 
2. Put the vegetable broth, diced tomatoes and zucchini into a saucepan. Bring to a boil. 
3. Shred 1/2 cup as much or as little asiago cheese as you want. 
4. Once the broth mixture has begun boiling, remove from heat. Ladle soup into bowls, and sprinkle asiago cheese on top. 

And there you have it, quick, easy and healthy soup. 

8.  So apparently my body has decided that every morning I should wake up somewhere between 6:30 and 7AM. Awesome, right? Not so much. So tonight, I am trying this: 

I've had Neuro drinks before, but never the sleep kind. They would give samples when I worked at Kmart (because I am that cool), but they're apparently not allowed to give samples of the Sleep one since people might be driving home. Guess it's gotta be legit if it's dangerous, right? I'll keep you posted. 

9. I joined Bloglovin. This little blog is getting a little more official.

10. This is my last post of 2011! It was a big year. Graduated college, got a big girl job, a lot of changes happened here in Santa Barbara. Oh, and I started a blog. The best change of all :) While 2011 has been a great year, I am confident that 2012 can only get better. Definitely looking forward to the adventures of this upcoming year. I hope everyone has a wonderful time celebrating the new year!

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Country Night

I'm starting the whole 'new years resolution' thing a bit early this year. I want to stop putting things on the back burner. There's a lot of things that I say I want to do, and then never get around to. One of those things is to go to country night at a local bar. Alright so I'm starting small here, not like I'm running to get my passport and booking a flight somewhere abroad (although I do hope to do that this year). But anyway, I did it! My friend Kristen and I got in country attire, and headed to Creekside for some line dancing lessons. 

I had a blast! I really love dancing, so trying a new kind of dancing (that happens to include one of my favorite types of music) was SO much fun. I'm thinking this might become a Wednesday night tradition. Seems like a great way to spice up that work week.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Scenes from Christmas Weekend

As seen from my oh-so-amazing cell phone camera:

Christmas Eve Service

View from my run. I love San Diego.

Christmas Sunset

I hope everyone had an amazing Christmas. I had the best weekend with my family, and got to see some friends too. Not to mention picked up a few pretty awesome gifts. My favorites being these Uggs:

and the pink slip to my car! I am the official proud owner, and one lucky girl. Santa did pretty good this year. 

Friday, December 23, 2011

Friday Facts - Part 3

1. This lady is single. Yupp, that's the big news for today. Single, ready to mingle, back on the market, however you want to phrase it, this gal will be starting 2012 happily ridin' solo. I really want to slow down this year. Everything seems to be happening so fast. Graduate college, check. Get a full time job, check. Move into my first *rented* house, check. So much has happened in the last 9 months and I feel like it's just flying by before my eyes. I want to enjoy these years. Take some time to really figure out what I want to do, and just do it. So believe me, when I find that amazing person, oh I'll snatch him up. But for now, I'm ready to take a little me time.

2. So, about this Spinagogue business. All my Jews out there, have you heard of this game? Cause I hadn't. I thought my 6 year old sister had made up some fun new word for good old "spin the dreidel." But I was wrong:

Now I wish I had taken a picture of the instruction manual, but you're just gonna have to take my word for it that I couldn't make this up if I tried. This game was no joke. It's the official game of Major League Dreidel, after all. And as with any official game, it was necessary to introduce the proper terminology before playing. By the end of the night, we were all sounding like Spinagogue masters. Here are a few of my favorite terms:

Kiss: when a dreidel collides with the wall of the Spinagogue. For example, "Oh man, that kiss is gonna do some major damage to my time."

Smooch: a prolonged kiss, such as when the dreidel skids against the wall of the Spinagogue. For example, "I just don't see any coming back from a smooch like that."

Flirting: when the dreidle is spinning closely to the wall of the Spinagogue, yet avoiding contact. For example, "That orange dreidel is doing some hard core flirting, there might be a kiss in the near future."

Like I said, can't make this stuff up. By the end of the game I was really wondering if this terminology was appropriate for the ears of my sister. I think she's far too young to be witnessing such smooching.

3. Now that you've got a basic understanding of Spinagogue, you can probably get an idea of how intense this can get. Luckily, the instruction booklet provided us with the World Records of past dreidel spins, so we were able to gauge how we stand against all the other MLD players. Turns out my cousin was born to play this game, like total dreidel champion. Pamskie was the previous world record holder, and she had a spin of 17.88 seconds. Believe it or not, my cousin BROKE the record. Too bad he just barely missed this year's MLD Tournament.

And since nothing's official until it's on facebook:

Next step for Justin, pick a professional Spinagogue name. My personal favorite was Spinny the Poo, but here are a few other examples:

4. Remember here when I said that I finally started getting things for my room so that I could oh you know, move in? Well dad came up at just the perfect time and being the amazingly generous and handy dad that he is, he helped me put everything together! And when I say he helped me, I basically mean that I helped him by doing the few steps that I could actually do (like hammering nails! woo!). It feels so good to have a room with a dresser, pictures and a mirror on the wall, AND curtains. I'm sure gonna miss waking up at 7AM on the weekends due to the light shining through my curatin-less, blind-less windows. Ha, not. Pictures of my newly set up room coming soon! After I finish actually putting things in my new drawers, of course.

Thanks, Dad! You're the best! :)

5. I really like this song right now:

It just makes me want to dance, and I really love to dance. Especially when it's just me watching myself in the mirror. That's when I give the best shows. Or when I'm in my cubicle at work and I just can't help but bust out a few kind-of subtle moves. Except for that one time I got caught. Not embarassing at all.

6. This was my favorite blog post this week. As a new blogger, I'm quickly finding that some things are easier to post about than others. Some things just seem too serious, too real, too embarassing, too _______ (you fill in the blank). It's easy to focus on the flowers and butterflies and not that time I maybe peed my pants while walking home from the dining commons. Hey, something really funny happened, okay? Alright, maybe not that funny. I was just laughing really hard. So maybe Bridget didn't share her laughed-so-hard-she-peed-her-pants story, but she did keep it real. I'm a big fan of that. It's nice to know that I'm not the only one who hits a few bumps in the road every now and then.

7. After work, I'm heading home to San Diego for a few days. It'll be nice to have some time off work, see some friends that I've been missing and spend more time with the fam. Not to mention Christmas on Sunday! Can't wait!

8. Have I mentioned Fantasy Football on this here blog of mine? I don't think I have. Well a few years back, I played with my guy friends in college. It made watching the games way more fun cause I actually had things to pay attention to. Being the only girl, I was pretty stoked not to come in last. Came in 9th out of 10 people, no big deal. This year, I joined our guy friends' league, and guess what! I'm in first! I probably shouldn't brag seeing as the championship game is this week so I really have yet to win anything, but hey, even if I come in 2nd that's still better than 9th! (And better than the basically last place I got in my family league this year. Oh well, minor details). Wish me luck!

9. I've been majorly slacking on my cooking lately, but next week I WILL post another recipe. I'm determined.

10. Can I just say that coming up with 10 things has been kind of difficult? It really shouldn't be, but next week I want to take more pics to spice up my Friday Facts. This week had a serious lack of pictures (mah bad). Anyway, there you have it folks, my week's worth of facts, and some goals for next week. Happy Friday!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Thank You

I got my first Thank You note from a client this week. 
Just a short and sweet "thanks for your help, and happy holidays" note and gift card, but it totally made my day! It's easy to forget how far a simple thank you can go, and in 2012 I want to make more of an effort to show my appreciation for even the little things. Sometimes it's the little things that go the farthest. 

Oh, and Happy Hanukkah to all my Jewish friends! Just celebrated with the fam tonight, and I had a great time playing Spinagogue, breaking world records and feasting on delicious food. I'll save the details for this week's Friday Facts. Hey, I gotta leave you something to look forward to, right?

Happy Hump Day! 

Monday, December 19, 2011

Breakfast in Solvang

I had a really great weekend that was packed with some good quality roommate time, my first company holiday party, a great day of football and a perfect day with my dad and sister (the rest of the fam come tomorrow). I drove up to Solvang on Sunday morning to meet my dad and sister for breakfast. Solvang is where they're staying this week, and it's the cutest little Danish town just 40 minutes from Santa Barbara. I had actually never been there before, so I had a great time walking around and enjoying the Christmas decorations.

We had an amazing Danish breakfast, and I can definitely say that I will probably be back up there for more meals while the fam is in town. Hope everybody else had a great weekend as well!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Friday Facts!

1. Christmas is right around the corner! We did our part to enjoy the Holiday Season this week by exchanging Secret Santa gifts (that deserves a number in and of itself), curling up on the couch to watch a Christmas Movie (National Lampoon Christmas Vacation) and of course, enjoying some seasonal holiday drinks. We had quite a selection of festive cocktails: eggnog, mulled wine and my personal favorite, hot chocolate with peppermint schnapps. On top of that we had an amazing dinner of vegetarian lasagna (thanks to Carly's awesome cooking!), and an entire plate of holiday treats for dessert. We are definitely doing our part in celebrating the holidays in this house.

2. So back to this whole Secret Santa exchange. Did I mention that this is kind of a holiday tradition for Kristi and me? I mean, I don't know if it's possible to be Secret Santa experts, but if so, we definitely are. It's pretty safe to assume that when there are less people involved, it's a lot easier to draw yourself when it comes time to pick names. Having done this last year with 5 people, we were well aware that it might take a few rounds before everything works out right.

But this year, we had a man watching as we drew our names. And as everyone knows, men are way better than women at everything. So after a few failed attempts at drawing, this man got a bit impatient. He decided to do the drawing himself, to make sure none of us picked ourselves.

Alright, so now that you know the back story, flash forward to Wednesday night. We're all curled up on the couches, and as we've done all the years before, we pick someone to go first. They're supposed to give out their present, and the chain goes on from there. So Kristi goes to grab her present, walks in and starts heading towards Kim. Only one issue, I have Kim. She can't have Kim. But sure enough, she does. Soo Secret Santa didn't exactly go as planned this year. One very lucky Kim got two presents, and one (lucky?) Carly will be getting four presents, one from each of us.

Lesson Learned: Men have no business organizing Secret Santa.

3. Something else I learned this season is that Santa Barbara actually does have seasons! Want some proof? Here's a picture of the fall leaves on the ground in our neighborhood:

I have to say I actually like the fall season. I like wearing scarves and winter jackets and boots, it's a cute look. Now if I can just have a giant Christmas bonus that can go towards expanding my winter wardrobe, I'll be one happy girl.

4. Don't think we left out Scooby on these holiday celebrations, he got to enjoy the season too! 

Scooby getting the treats out of his stocking

5. The fam comes to visit this week, and I could not be more excited. Monday is "Bring your kid to work day," and since my sister will definitely fall in the age group of the other kids, I'm bringing her to work. It will be so nice to spend some much needed time with my family. 

6. Kristi and I just started what I'm fairly certain is going to become a holiday tradition. Considering we have quite a bit of our festive cocktails leftover, we needed to put them to good use. After dinner last night we made ourselves some hot chocolate with peppermint schnapps, put on our warmest winter gear (including the adorable mittens Kristi got us all as our stockings gift) and grabbed Scooby's leash. We headed out for an evening walk to appreciate all of the Christmas lights in our neighborhood (I'm gonna be real and say that our neighbors are seriously slacking on the holiday spirit, but we love our neighborhood so they're forgiven). We ended up walking for well over an hour, and it was such a great way to get a little exercise while enjoying the decorations of the season.

7. Have I mentioned that we finally got DVR? Turns out it's only $1-2 extra for each of us per month, and now we can record all of our favorite shows. Worth it? You bet. So in honor of our new best friend, the DVR, here are some of my favorite TV shows:

Glee! This has definitely been one of my favorites for some time, but I have to be honest and say that I'm not a super huge fan of this season. But let's be real, I'm not gonna ditch the Glee train now. I'm a loyal fan.

I didn't get into How I Met Your Mother until just last season, but I'm so glad I did! I LOVE Friends, and this is basically the next Friends, so I'm in love. This season has kind of thrown me for a loop with a few things, and I just can't wait til new episodes come back after the holidays.

I heard a lot of good things about Revenge, but didn't start watching until a few weeks ago. Thank goodness for Hulu, cause I basically watched all of the episodes in about 2-3 days. Ever since then, well, I'm hooked. 

New Girl! Definitely my favorite show right now. It's just SO good, and so funny. If you haven't watched it yet, do yourself a favor and catch up during the holiday break! You won't regret it.

8. Can you guys believe that it's almost 2012? That's CRAZY to me. Time is just flying by and it needs to slowww down. I'd really like to enjoy these next 5+ years so if someone could pull some strings and slow the clock down, that'd be great. Anyway, speaking of the new year, it's time to start thinking of those new year's resolutions. I've got a few decisions to make, such as a) what my resolutions should be, and b) if I'm gonna blog about them. I should be a good blogger and post my goals for 2012, but definitely a bit worried about if I slip up. But hey, there's no judgement here, right?

9. I've decided I need to plan a trip to San Francisco to visit these people: 

This picture was taken over 5 years ago. I'll say it one more time, can someone please slow time down? K thanks. But back to the point, I'm determined to visit San Fran within the next few months. It's happening, just gotta pick a date. 

10.  Can I just say that I am so glad it's Friday? This has been a really long week, so let's say it together now: TGIF

Happy Friday!!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Where I spend 40 hours/week

So this entire post is built around a single picture, and I have to preface by explaining just how awkward I was while taking this photo. I've been wanting to take a picture of my cubicle (yeah that's right, I have my very own cubicle. It's pretty cool.) oh since about the day I moved into it. I got all excited about all of the firsts that came along with my first big girl job. Definitely took a photo of my badge and name plate when I got those to send back to Mom, but taking those pictures was a lot most discrete than trying to get my whole desk in a cell phone pic. But did that stop me? Nope. When we first moved into our new building (about two months ago) I decided it was finally time to suck it up and figure out a way to get a pic of my desk. I mean, people want to know where I spend 8 hours a day Monday - Friday, right? And by "people," I mean Mom. Maybe not even her, but I like to pretend. So anyway, the phone I had during moving day had a broken camera, so I was very disappointed to realize I was not going to be able to document my newly organized cube. Fortunate for all of you, I had to get a new phone recently. And it took me some time to realize that with my newly functioning camera on my phone, I could finally take a picture of my cubicle. But I didn't really think it through, and definitely had to scoot my chair prettyy far back (basically into the walk way, no big deal) so that I could whip out my handy dandy cell phone to very obviously take a picture of my cube. I tried to wheel back to my desk all sorts of fast to be as discrete as possible, but pretty sure everyone noticed. Oh well, minor details. I got the pic, so I can finally share where I spend 40 hours a week, every week. Enjoy. 

Am I cool, or what?