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cold times call for lots of tea

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It is excruciating to go from the mid-80’s in Hawaii to 30 degree morning bike rides to work in Berkeley (or 15 degrees and a snow storm for my mom in Boulder…yuck!).  Days like this call for lots of tea. However, lately I have been in a bit of a tea funk.  I need some new tea favorites beyond chamomille, mint, chai, or black teas.  I love Mighty Leaf teas, but at the moment I can’t afford to make their teas of absolute joy a daily habit.  Any suggestions? 

Maybe I should just stick to the mai tai and go back to Hawaii.   

perfection

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Nay Nay and Nay Nay wedding 11.25.2006 (photos courtsey of Cooper Carras Photography)

I can’t begin to describe how beautiful the wedding in Hawaii was this past weekend.  My brother was the sharpest groom I have seen dressed in a white linen suit and black converse allstars.  Naomi was stunning.  Simply stunning.  The weather was perfect.  The ceremony and reception were perfect.  It is going to be hard to top an event like this. 

and off we go

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botanical gardens, San Francisco

Tomorrow morning we are off to Hawaii for the wedding.  I have orange hands (from the magical tan I got last night), I have too much laundry to do, I have not packed at all, our apartment is a mess, and I have not practiced enough for the karaoke event…BUT WE ARE GOING TO HAWAII!!  The weather forecast doesn’t look to bright (literally), but I know that it is going to be a blast no matter what.  Goooooooooo destination weddings! 

 

i am in love

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I am in love. 

I am in love with this bread.  This recipe deserves absolutely every ounce of the hype.  If I were to give someone one piece of advice in life: make this bread.  Cooper and I made this loaf of wonderous wonder over the weekend and when it came out of the oven at 1am, we devoured a third of it within minutes.  It is amazing.  Words do not describe how delicious it is.  I am utterly in love.

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A random thought: have you ever accidentally (or intentionally) worn two different socks that are of varying thickness?  I LOVE IT!!  They have to be extremely different types of socks to feel the pleasure.  One foot with a thin sock will feel like an entirely different world than the foot with the thick sock.  It will change your life (in addition to the above mentioned bread recipe).

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Tonight I am going to turn orange.  I am going to try one of the spray tan machines with a friend in prep for the Hawaii wedding (2 days until we take off!!).  Hopefully it is semi-natural looking…I suppose anything is better than my natural bright white.  Cross your fingers for me.

dots, kringle, KFC, and popcorn

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Perhaps one of my favorite gifts to give (especially around the holidays) is from this bakery in Wisconsin.  Their kringles are amazing. 

Did you hear about Colonel Sanders as seen from space?  I love desert art like this

Today I bought our office a little popcorn machine.  I got too excited about the contraption and just had to buy it along with white, gold, and blue all natural popcorn.  Oh, the things we do when we get bored at work! 

Napoleon Dynamite look alike

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This photo just makes me giggle (usually internally, but sometimes out loud depending on who is around me) every time I see it.  Doesn’t Cooper look like Napoleon Dynamite?!

Another moment of internal joy: biking down a side street on my way to work that is terribly full of bumps and holes…except for a one beautiful new strip of concrete right down the middle.  I coast like none other when I hit that fabulous strip.  I have also just recently been extremely excited about using my arms to tell the cars behind me which way I am going to turn.  I feel a tad bit silly about putting my awkward, bony, and extremely white arm out for all to see, but at the same time I thoroughly enjoy it.  If you see someone biking who puts out something that looks like a white twig…it is probably me.

I race by myself

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welbilt

When I walk, I don’t just walk…I walk with gusto.  I don’t know what it is in my little body, but I have a hard time strolling.  I know I would see more if I slowed down a little, but I simply have a hard time doing so.  Emily did a fantastic job sprinting to work with me when she lived around the corner…although in hindsight I feel bad that I put her through the speed walking scenario.  We probably looked ridiculous walking so fast through the streets of Berkeley. 

One thing I do enjoy about my fast paced jaunts: racing others when they have no idea we are racing.  The race begins as crowds collect on a corner and we all wait for the walking man to appear (aka the gun starting our race).  The first to the other side is the winner.  Normally, I win because everyone else is strolling, but sometimes I am lucky enough to find some good competition.  I clearly remember one particular race event:  I was walking home and a semi-old man was on a creaky bike next to me, slowly making his way up the hill.  It was perfectly quiet outside except for his creaky bike and my brain saying, “Go Assi! Go Assi!” Unfortunately, once the hill leveled off, he was able to accelerate more than my big little feet could go so he ended up winning the race to the end of the block.   I sometimes race with my bike, but it normally is me against the cars next to me when we are stopped at a stop sign (again, the first to get to the other side of the street wins).  These are particularly good challenges and I don’t always win. I prefer race against other bikers…most Berkeley-ites have stronger faster bikes than mine, so I prefer to go at my own pace.  

Go Assi, Go Assi!

golden bubbly all over the place

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Question:  Are 3 liter bottles of wine currently a trendy thing, or now that I have purchased one am I suddenly attracted to the big kahunas?  I bought the above bottle as my brother’s wedding gift (along with 2 wine glasses which are designed to fit an entire bottle of wine per glass….totally my brother). Next to the 3 liter bottle is a magnum bottle of Dom Perignon.  Next to the Dom Perignon is the forever cheap favorite Charles Shaw.  The Dom Perignon bottle serves as a memory which leads me to tell a great story:

It was at the holiday party 2005, atop the Starlight Room in San Francisco.  It was a beautiful clear night with 180 degree views of the city.  People came and went way too quickly for our offices to go through the tab that we had at the bar.  So, what do you do when you have over a $1500 non refundable tab and only a dozen or so people around?  Have a swanky champagne ordering contest of course!  The table across from us ordered a $200 bottle of champagne…silly friends.  We took their $200 bottle and trumped them with a $450 bottle of Cristal.  Our young waitress sashayed to our table in her extravagant evening gown and said we could order that bottle as long as she could have a sip (she had never had Cristal herself).  Twenty minutes later she returned to report that their cellar was out of Cristal.  Ok, then…back to the drink list and on to a more expensive $500 Magnum bottle of Dom Perignon (which also meant back to the cellar for another 20 minutes).  At this point our competition table was nearing the end of their bottle, so the thrill of outdoing their measly little bottle was dying.  While waiting for our bottle of Dom to chill (another 20 minutes) we calculated how much more we “needed” to spend which then required ordering expensive aged glasses of grappa, port, cognac, etc.  Then came time for the Dom.  Our pretty little waitress began to pop the cork and while doing so she started to tell a story, but before we knew it mass chaos broke out.  The cork popped and hit a guy standing behind the waitress in the eye.  Champagne sprayed everywhere (most of which also covered the guys behind the waitress).  The magnum bottle was on the floor…spilling expensive champagne everywhere.  We ended up with an inch left of the bubbly and expensive gold liquid.  The poor waitress was devastated and ran off crying while her manager rounded the corner with fire in his eyes.  He offered us two smaller, younger, and probably cheaper bottles of Dom Perignon to enjoy instead (which we again had to chill for another 20 minutes) and we pleaded for him not to fire the pretty young waitress.  The competition table was long gone.  We sipped the Dom Perignon and relived the night of absolute chaos and frivolousness.  The one thing I learned out of the entire event: Dom Perignon doesn’t taste any better than a few cheap bottles of champagne from Costo.

 

a painter of the dogs

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Finney

I love this dog. 

I want a dog.

If I could have a dog I might name him George.

I wouldn’t dress my dog in clothes (unless it was Halloween)

But I would bake biscuits for my dog

Dogs are the one of the top two companions in the world

I like painting dogs (on a canvas, not on the dog)

I don’t mind smelling like a dog (after having been around one)

I like it when dogs lean on people

I wish I could have a dog

 

 

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