Monday, November 28, 2011

Indian Summer

The title of this post is a word New Yorkers use when there is an unusually warm spell in the middle of fall.  But I think South Carolinians just call it November.


People who have spent time with me over the past few weeks may have heard my running commentary on the weather recently in Charleston.  For lack of a better word, its been hot.  I don't really do hot very well, especially when December is three days away.


It's been too hot for me to wear jeans and I'm tired of all of my summer clothes (I mean I've only been wearing them since May).  It's been too hot for me to sleep, and I'm tired of being tired.  And hot.  And sweaty.  And grumpy/irritable due to lack of sleep and wardrobe and copious amounts of sweat.  


The bright side?  It is supposed to drastically cool off tonight.  Instead of highs near 80 today, the rest of the 10 day forecast has highs in the upper 50's to low 60's.  So here's to grinning and bearing it for 24 more hours, but I'm sure ready to cool off.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Rivalry Weekend

Wishing I was here:


Or more specifically here:


With these people:



Or even this person:

who I know HATES UVA football, but is too nice to admit it! :)
But instead I'm sitting here:

ok, this is my old apartment
FML.


Ok, pity party over.  In two years I'll be there.  Until then....LET'S GO HOOS!!!



Monday, November 21, 2011

The Muppets

I thought I'd take a page out of my pal Hannah's book and write about a movie I'm DYING to see.  (Hannah, by the way, is one of my fabulous law school friends who manages not only to be my study buddy but is also able to keep up with her winningly witty blog which you can find here.)


I grew up in a Muppet household.  I don't remember a time in my life when there wasn't Kermit the Frog or Miss Piggy.  From The Muppet Movie to The Great Muppet Caper and from Muppet Babies to Kermit's stint as a special reporter on Sesame Street, I have developed over the course of my life time a deep-seated and very important admiration for the Muppets.  Christmas was celebrated with this (it never quite feels like Christmas until I hear all the Muppets sing the ba dum dum dums during the 12 Days of Christmas):


The BEST Christmas album EVER
Anyhoo, I have been looking forward to this day since LAST Christmas when I first heard about the Muppets' new movie.  Once I heard that Jason Segel (of How I Met Your Mother fame) had not only written the movie, but was also set to star in it, I was more than sold, I was ready to buy my tickets then and there.

This morning Jason Segel appeared on Live! with Kelly (now without Regis, sad).  He started talking about why he loves the Muppets, and it was EXACTLY why I love the Muppets.  I wish I could find a clip somewhere, but it only aired this morning and quite honestly, my google skills are not quite up to par.  To paraphrase, Jason Segel talks about how the Muppets represent the best part of ourselves, how we're always better together than apart, and how they somehow symbolize the innocence of childhood, just teetering on the brink of chaos.  It was fantastic, if you can find the clip (and love the Muppets) then I strongly recommend checking it out.  It was wonderful.  Almost as wonderful as Miss Piggy.

P.S.  In case you have yet to see it, here's the trailer for the latest Muppet wonderfulness, coming out in TWO DAYS!!!



ANY MOVIES YOU'RE DYING TO SEE OVER THANKSGIVING WEEKEND?
ARE YOU UNABASHEDLY IN LOVE WITH THE MUPPETS?  WHICH ONE?


Odds and Ends

A few things:



  1.  So I pretty much failed at following my pre-planned food attempt.  It was a great idea and totally something I could do, but this point in the semester is not the time to be trying new things.  It's something I'll try again next semester.
  2. I finally decided on my Thanksgiving plans.  Those of you who know me, know that I was really struggling with this one this year.  But for a variety of reasons I decided that it would be better/more practical to stay in Charleston again this year.  I'll have dinner at my aunt's house and I'll run the Charleston Turkey Day Run and Gobble Wobble.  One big deciding factor, I'll be home in about 3 weeks for a month and I was just home a couple of weeks ago.  
  3. I know that Christmas is right around the corner.  Not because Christmas carols have invaded the airwaves or that Thanksgiving is in 2 days, but because this commercial is again on TV, like it has been since I was little:

Friday, November 18, 2011

Build Your Own

My new-ish favorite trend in food right now is something I call "build your own."  I've always been a little like Sally from When Harry Met Sally.  I'll go someplace and ask for the dressing on the side, hold the tomatoes, can I add some avocado on that, hold the cheese, extra cheese, you get the picture.  This usually winds up with the server getting exceptionally annoyed with me and messing up my order.


So I guess it's not surprise that I've fallen in love with these restaurants where I get to craft my food for myself without any judgment.  


My obsession started innocently enough when I discovered the build your own burrito concept.  My personal fave is Moe's.  I knew it was meant to be when I discovered Moe Monday's - $5 for any burrito of your choosing AND a drink.  That's something that even this poor law student can afford!


I became more obsessed when the self-serve frozen yogurt craze swept the nation.  I love fro yo so it wasn't much of a stretch - especially when I can top it with Reese's Peanut Butter Cups AND chocolate chip cookie dough bites.  When I'm in Virginia, the ONLY place I get my fro yo from is The Skinny Dip.  So awesomely good.  When I'm in Charleston, my fro yo establishment of choice is Yogurt Mountain.  (Personally I prefer the Dip, but Yogurt Mountain is pretty close.)


I recently discovered the trifecta of build your own restaurants.  It's a brand new place in Charleston called Verde.  I LOVE the concept - build your own salad.  For $6.95 you get lettuce (a lot of lettuce), four toppings, and a piece of bread.  You can add chicken, turkey, or shrimp for a few extra dollars.  I'm more than a little obsessed with this place.  It's been open for about three weeks and I've been about 7 times.  It's bad for my wallet, but it's so good.  I love that I can go there and get something that I don't feel guilty about eating a few hours later.  If you're ever in Charleston, I highly recommend checking it out.


WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE PLACE TO EAT OR FAVORITE FOOD TREND?

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Now Hiring

It's that time again.  You know that one last Thanksgiving and last spring where I nearly lost my mind?  That's the one...exams are RIGHT around the corner.  My first one is in two weeks from this Thursday.  Gross.


I always think its kind of interesting what happens to me at this critical time in the semester. What I hold onto and what I let go of.  For example, I cling to my work-out time with a vice-like death grip.  Laundry, on the other hand, goes right to the bottom of my list.  So does prepping my meals.  All of last year I survived finals on a diet that consisted mostly of scrambled eggs.  (As a bonus, the scrambled egg/excessive amount of protein/lots of running lifestyle helped me drop a few pounds during the hectic exam period.)


I've decided that having a personal assistant would make my life approximately a billion times better over the next few weeks.  If you're interested, comment here and we'll start the negotiations.  Your duties will be similar to those of Elaine Bennis when she was working for Mr. Pitt.  Well, no they won't.  You'll have to do my grocery shopping, prep my meals, and do my laundry.  As well as pick up after me when I'm at school.  I'm thinking it would be a ten hour a week commitment.  As an added bonus?  I'll pay you with my eternal gratitude.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Carbs

If you've been reading this thing lately, you'll know that I was recently a bridesmaid in one of my best friends' wedding.  You will also know that I was fixated on losing weight before the big day - which I successfully did!  I attribute my recent weight loss success on a few things: lots of running, almost eliminating soda from my diet, and restricting the amount of carbs I was eating.  I'm mostly giving credit to my carb redux.


Since the wedding I have NOT been able to STOP eating carbs.  It's bad.  Real bad - I had TWO bagels this week.  I think after limiting something I so dearly love, I over did it a little bit.  And now, before the pounds start creeping back on, I need to regain control.  So I'm going to try something new: I'm going to plan out my meals for the next five days, and I'm going to share it with you.  


Now some of the blogs that I follow insert tables into their blogs, but I have no idea how to do that, and I don't have the patience to try to learn right now.  Also I eat practically the same thing every day for breakfast and lunch, so dinner is really the only thing that changes.


So for breakfast: 1/2 cup of Fiber One Cereal with 1/2 cup of skim milk and lots of coffee
Lunch: Salad (lettuce with some protein and lite salad dressing), string cheese, Fiber One yogurt, baby carrots,  and grapes
Snack: An apple


Tonight for dinner I'm making a recipe I found on Pinterest - Creamy Cajun Chicken (don't worry, I'm lightening it up).
I'll eat that until I run out of leftovers (probably Tuesday or Wednesday).
Then I'll have scrambled eggs with some toast for dinner.
Friday night I usually let myself eat something that's a little more "fun" so that meal slot stays open.


I'll check back in next weekend to see how I did staying "on track."

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Where in the World

I don't think that I've ever really talked about this before, but I'm kind of a morning TV junkie.  Ok, I know you're thinking, "get real, Andrea, you're just a TV addict."  Which is true, but there's something extra special about morning TV.


As much as I love my sleep (and trust me, I do love my sleep) there is something wonderful about waking up a little earlier than I need to so I can sit in bed with my cup of coffee, my computer, and the remote control.  My favorite shows are The Today Show and Morning Joe. Basically my mornings are filled with coffee, blogs, guilty pleasure morning TV (a la Today), and getting my politics fix (a la Morning Joe).  One relatively unintended benefit of this hobby is that I'm usually pretty informed as to what's going on in the world.


This week, my favorite news story has to be the extra-special Today Show segment, Where in the World is Matt Lauer.


For anyone unfamiliar with this series, every day of the week, Matt Lauer goes to a new and interesting world location and reports there.  Usually its about the culture, food, customs, life of the everyday citizen, etc.  What makes the segment even better is that Matt always gives the audience a clue as to his next mystery location.  They are hard as a mother to figure out.  So far this week, Matt has travelled to Namibia, Madrid, and Malaysia.  Who knows where that crazy guy is off to next.  Here's the clue if you'd like to give it a whirl: "Time is of the essence as we train our sights on where it all began for us back in 1998."  


Other than Matt Lauer, its been kind of a crazy/controversial week in the news biz.  


First the trial of Conrad Murray, Michael Jackson's doctor.  Legally, I get it.  My criminal law professor even commented today that its a textbook example of involuntary manslaughter.  However, Michael Jackson has been dead for two years (I think) and I think its time to put this story to rest.  Dr. Murray received his sentence and will now spend some time in jail or repaying his debt to society in another way, its not something that needs or deserves this much media coverage.  And that's what I think about that.


Second, the Duggars.  The Duggars, the family that stars in the TLC show "Nineteen Kids and Counting" are expecting their TWENTIETH child.  Now I fully respect Michelle and Jim Bob's decision to have as many children as they'd like, particularly since Michelle and Jim Bob are able to feed, clothe, care for, and generally afford to have twenty children.  However, Michelle's last pregnancy was dangerous.  Their daughter Josie was born early and weighed merely a pound.  There were serious health threats for both mom and baby.  While I respect the Duggars' right to have as many children as they'd like, I do think it can be a bit reckless to bring a baby in the world where the chance of serious injury, birth defect, serious mental/developmental issues, and/or death are so high.  And that is what I think about that.


Finally, the Joe Paterno scandal.  I never thought I'd live in a world where people would be more outraged over the state of college football than the fact that children were sexual molested.  It disgusts me more than a little.  I don't care if you are the king of the world: if you know that children are being sexually abused, know you have a duty to report such abuse to the authorities, and fail to do so...well, quite frankly, you deserve to lose your job. If we, as a society, place more value on the "legacy" of a football coach than we do on the rights of innocent children, well, then, we are sorely misguided.  And I believe I've figured out why this worlds is in such a mess.  We can never place too much value on protecting those who cannot protect themselves, even at the chance that it will affect who is playing a Bowl Game this winter.  And that is what I have to think about that.


Where do you think Matt is off to?
Are you a news junkie?
What are your favorite stories of the week (or stories you love to hate)?

Monday, November 7, 2011

Whirlwind

This weekend was a whirlwind of wonderfulness.  My dear friend Laura's wedding went went off without a hitch.  She was a beautiful bride, the ceremony was gorgeous, as was the reception.  I'm so excited for what's next for this great couple!  


I have absolutely no pictures from the actual wedding day, but the photographer put this one up (by the way, the photographer, Dustin Lewis, was AMAZING...if you're in the 757 and looking for a photographer check out his website here):


photo cred: Dustin Lewis

I am still so beyond honored to have been a part of Laura's special day.  I don't know if words can really express how much I love those girls.  But I know that my life would be incomplete without them.    Now its back to the grind.  The end of the semester will be here before I know it, and then I'll have a lot of time with my girls!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Wedding Weekend!

The wedding weekend is here!  As I type, I'm sitting in the Charleston airport, sipping a glass of Pinot Grigio (I'm a nervous flyer and it helps...don't judge), and not caring that I'm going to be missing my evening class today (and I JUST got the wine...so its definitely not the wine talking).  I'm supposed to get home a little before midnight.  I took similar flights two weeks ago when I was home for Fall Break, so hopefully this flight will go as smoothly as that one.


I'm so excited for this weekend!  My friend Laura is marrying a great guy and I'm so honored that she asked me to be a part of their special day.  Laura is Meredith's younger sister so I've known her for forever.  I technically met Laura before I met Meredith.  We were assigned the same seat on the bus when I was in fourth grade and she was in third.  Granted we never spoke to each other, but I've known her for a long, long time.


I'm so happy for her and all of the wonderful things that I know are going to happen to her and David in the future!  I know its going to be a beautiful wedding; a great way to kick off what is surely going to be a beautiful life together.


On a significantly more selfish note, I reached my wedding weight loss goal!!!!  Actually, I BEAT my wedding weight loss goal!!!!  Only 2-3 pounds until I meet my Christmas goal, so now I'm reevaluating my Christmas goal.  I've got a new number in my mind, but it might be difficult/impossible considering Thanksgiving, exams, and Christmas cookies are on the horizon.  We shall see.


Anyway, here's to a great weekend and a great couple!  I'll update you with some excellent photos as soon as possible!  Better run, my flight's about to board!