Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Too Old for....

The day after tomorrow is my 29th birthday. I have to say, when it comes to birthdays, sure I get excited to celebrate with friends and family - but it's the celebration/activities not the actual birthday I'm excited about.

However, there's something different about this birthday.

Maybe it's because it's my final year in my "20s"? 
Maybe it's because I only have one year left until the big 3-0? 
Maybe I'm just super excited about the things and events I have planned for this birthday?
Probably a combination of all three.

Being excited for my upcoming birthday I thought it'd be fund to show my excitement somehow on this blog. What I stumbled upon here was (someone's view of) 29 Things You're Too Old For As of Your 29th Birthday!! (Some of them I COMPLETELY agree with and then others I'm not so sure about)

1. Wear handbands, head to toe pink and cheerleader outfits (Agree..unless for Halloween) 


2. Celebrate your birthday on more than one day (Okay, here I disagree. Yes the woman they use as an example in the article went a little above and beyond - okay ridiculous - but I don't see anything wrong with a multi-day celebration. Last Sunday I went out for a nice dinner with my mother and sisters. This weekend I have a relaxing get-away weekend at a nearby lodge and winery. Then the following weekend I am having a few friends over to play board games and eat pizza to celebrate me turning 29. Different groups of people = different celebrations. Sometimes groups don't mix)

3. Reminisce about college (I think this depends. If you're longing for the "good ol' days" of college than I agree. But there's nothing wrong with going down memory lane occasionally. After all college is where you meet most of your long term friends and a good percentage meet their future spouse).  

4. Reminisce about the college you never attended (Agreed) 

5. Send cryptic messages to people via Facebook and Twitter (I'm not even sure what this means?)  

6. Think of your high school boyfriend as the one that got away (Now while I don't think of my high school boyfriend as the one that got away I can't help but think of all the sweet stories out there about high school sweethearts who reunite after fifty years and fall in love all over again)  

7. Refer to any boyfriend from that long ago by the era he’s associated with — no one cares that you dated Josh the summer after your freshman year at community college. (Agreed...unless you're distinguishing between the multiple "Josh"s you have dated)  

8. Wear holiday-themed outfits, like pastels and bows on Easter and red and green plaid on Christmas (unless you are Catherine and wear red and green plaid year-round) (Who is Catherine? Did they mean Catholic? Doesn't matter, didn't this stop being cute when you're...I don't know five?!) 

9. Quote self-help books and/or “Sex and the City” episodes — unless it’s in a mocking fashion. (Agreed...or you're blogging about them *winkwink*) 

10. Decorate your apartment from Pottery Barn Teen and/or Urban Outfitters (Maybe it's just me but I think this is a rule for anyone no longer in high school or living in a college dorm) 

11. Put up posters with tape or thumbtacks instead of frames (While I'm a big supporter of framed art I know others who aren't and still have pictures/posters on walls with some form of adhesive. I think as long as these aren't the same posters you've been pinning and taping on your walls since highschool... then whatever) 

12. Attend concerts featuring anyone who wasn’t born by the year you started college (i.e., Justin Bieber) unless you are escorting a much younger family member (Agreed to some level. Pop culture icons - agreed. Now if it were a modern day child prodigy like Mozart - then I'll disagree)  

13. Olsen Twin movie marathons (I know, I know, “Passport to Paris” is a classic, but get over it) (These were never okay in my book)  

14. Calling men “boys” on a regular basis (If they stop acting like little boys I'll stop calling them boys) 

15. Say or write “LOL” (Holy hell. I hate when people SAY chatspeak aloud! It's meant to be written, typed, messaged not spoken!! I think, when used properly, there's no real age-limit...although an 80 year old grandma writing lmfao might be too funny)  

16. Tote your dog around everywhere, unless you are blind and he/she is a seeing-eye dog. (So I think 29 is too YOUNG to do this...not too old. Paris Hilton and other socialites have ruined this for the little grandma's in the world with their little grandma doggies. There's a woman who rides the train with me in the morning, who carries her 15 year old weinerdog wrapped in a tie-dye blanket. Aw)  

17. Want to be treated like a princess, to live life like it’s a fairytale, and to be looking for your Prince Charming (I think there's a difference between "wanting" to live etc etc and actually "expecting" others to treat you like a princess, etc)  

18. Own teddy bears and other stuffed animals, unless you have one (singular!) that is left over from your childhood that holds a lot of sentimental value (I'll admit I do have two or three left over from childhood. But they're packed away for my own children. Adults with beds of teddy bears can get creepy - especially for that first "sleepover" with a new relationship)  

19. Call your father “daddy” (Disagree. Okay. I don't have a father but I know plenty of people who still use this term when saying "I love you" or in an affectionate way. I also often will still call my mom "mommy" when trying to weasel something out of her when I'm sick. "Oh mommy...can you "Blank" for me??).  

20. Subscribe to teen magazines, unless you work as a writer specializing in teen issues (Agreed)  

21. Spend more than one hour on the phone with a friend, unless she truly is in a crisis or you haven’t talked to her in over a year and need to catch up (I'm a bad judge at this. I hate talking on the phone. I can chat online with a friend for hours... but put a phone to my ear and I'm running to find a reason to hang up) 

22. Have your parents pay your bills, unless it’s your student loans and they insist OR you’re going through a short, temporary rough financial patch (Agree and disagree. Agree to not have your parent's pay your bills but I don't care if it's YOUR student loans - unless they offered to take loans out in their name... or if they "insist" you're an adult. NO. Now if you're going through a short rough patch I understand. We've all been there).  

23. Consider a haircut a huge massive change of epic proportions, unless it’s a post-breakup haircut and you write one measly essay about the subject (Now I disagree, slightly. If we're talking just getting bangs for the first time in twenty years.... yea not so much. But if we're talking you've grown your hair out down to your butt and now you're donating it all to Locks of Love.... it's allowed to be a huge massive change of epic proportions!) 

24. Consider your hair color to be a significant part of your identity, unless you’re a redhead (See also blondes do not have more fun) 

25. Talk about how OMG wasted you got last night, like having a hangover makes you cool (Agreed) 

26. Lay out in the sun without sunscreen (This is 2012. I don't care how old or young you are. By now everyone should know better)  

27. Sit on anyone’s lap, unless you’re trying to fit five people in a taxi that sits four (You mean it's not okay to sit on the CEOs lap while he's dressed as Santa at the company holiday party? FYI - the school I work for does not have a CEO and there was no Santa at the holiday party... just to clarify)  

28. Wear glasses for “fashion” when you don’t have a prescription or vision issues (I don't understand this "fashion" at all. No matter what age you are.) 

29. Feel any shame or embarrassment about masturbating (Um? Totally random from everything else listed but yes, I agree. Get over it.)

500 Years of Women in Art

A coworker sent this to me today and it's just beautiful.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Be Yourself

The other night we watched Summer Magic, which is one of my mother's favorite movies. However, ever since I've had the music stuck in my head!! (Don't you hate that?)

One song in particular "Femininity"... and while I love this movie this song just makes me twitch.


Now I realize this was filmed in the sixties and was staged for the turn of the century... so things have changed a lot. But it's amazing how many of the things (suggested in the song) women today still let rule their life.

Walk feminine
Talk feminine
Smile and beguile feminine
Utilize your femininity
Act shy and sigh feminine
Compliment his masculinity

 Gag me...

Don't get me wrong. I consider myself a "feminine" woman. I like make-up and high heals and looking nice. But I don't do it because I think "That's what every girl should know, if she wants to catch a beau".

I do it because I like how it makes me feel about myself. I realize some people may disagree. May say I've been brainwashed by the multibillion dollar industries of cosmetics and fashion.

And maybe I have. But I just know that on days when I'm in yoga pants, no make-up and my hair just tossed up I feel a bit on the scrubby side. I feel more together when I look more together.

HOWEVER, I don't (and haven't) done it to win a man. Heck, my "beau" and I met with a computer screen between the two of us at first (read our love story here) so really, dolling myself up day after day to find a man who wants me to hide the real me (song lyric "Hide the real you")... just makes me sick.

This isn't just something "old time values" encourage either. In an iVillage article "How to Find a Boyfriend: 15 Tips from Professional Matchmakers" the following "tips" were suggested (only the disturbing ones are listed):

1. Be realistic: If you look like Roseanne, don't fixate on finding a Tom Cruise look-alike (WTF!! I didn't realize we lived in a world of appearance based "classes" and that physical appearance was the number one "compatibility" measurements)

3. Make dating a priority: ..the self-described "cupid in a Chanel suit" ...suggests that clients approach finding the right man as they would a job hunt. So the tip continues to talk about how you never know when you'll find that special someone and that you should always look your best. And in a far-fetched way I can see how that connects to job hunting... but I more-or-less just get an image of a woman out on the Serengeti hunting down her prey.

11. Be a girl:My male clients also complain that women often come across as masculine -- dressing in stiff suits and debating their date on everything from what wine to order to world affairs to who gets the check. Interesting. Since when is unfeminine to be a wine enthusiast? Or to care about world affairs? Or want to split the check? Okay. I agree don't fight over these things but having an opinion isn't masculine or feminine. And expressing my opinion doesn't make me any less of a girl.

I'm not going to hide who I am any more than I'm going pretend to be who I'm not (and yes I think these two are different). If someone is "turned off" by who I am (the whole package) then they obviously aren't the one I'm meant to (or would want to) be with. 

When are we going to start teaching our children that it's okay to be exactly who they are? That they don't have to paint their faces and put on costumes to make people like them. 


That it's okay to just be yourself. 

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Bridezilla: The Next Generation

I'll admit I am one of those girls that dreams of having the perfect wedding someday. 

Dreaming of having friends and family together to celebrate. Of that perfect moment coming down the aisle and seeing my soon-to-be-husbands face. But the location, the dress, the cake... these are things that are fuzzy and not in focus. 

The feeling of what that day will be like is what I dream about. 

The next chapter in my life with the man I love. 

This is what's important. 

So when I came across this Jezebel article about women who not only just dreaming of their perfect wedding day but are already starting to BUY the perfect wedding... and before they're even ENGAGED!? 

WTF??!!

Put's a whole new twist to the idea of a "Bridezilla"... I'd hate to see how they might handle roadblocks with the final steps in planning.  

Besides. How freaked out might your boyfriend/fiance be when he learns you have planned (and bought) the wedding out completely prior to him proposing. 

Maybe I'm too non-traditional but, silly me, I think of wedding as a celebration between TWO people. How fair is it for one person to have all the say in the day?

Have you already planned out (pieces) of your perfect day?

Souffle Pancake (photos)

Ingredients: flour, 1/2 1/2, butter, eggs, salt and fruit

Separate egg yolks from whites


Add 1/2 1/2 to eggs

Slowly add flour. Then sugar/salt


In separate bowl whip egg whites

Gently fold whites into the yolk mix

Pour into greased cast-iron pan. 


Add fruit to top of pancake after the edges start to dry


Once pancake starts to bubble, put pan under broiler

Enjoy once top has browned nicely

Own Skin

Friday, January 27, 2012

Like on Facebook

Just created a facebook page for Caution! Reality Check. Go here and "Like" my page!!

Sexy Science

This morning my aunt shared this article on facebook and I had to share here. I am surprised with the amount of sex in the media today how prudish our country can be.

"Time and time again, regardless of the publication discussing my fMRI orgasm, commenters wrote things like, “If only researchers were as interested in finding a cure for cancer,” and “I can’t believe my tax dollars are going to pay for such useless research.”"

Get over it!

Giving your body to science doesn't have to wait for when you're dead!! And yes, your money is going to cures for cancer, etc but the fact is very little money is going to the study of human sexuality.

"...unanimously, the scientists I talked to said their greatest challenge was finding research grants and financial support for their work. Because so many of us are peevish about the study of sex, funding agencies can be, too.... Human sexuality is important - and its study is something we should all get behind. Because we can’t begin to have discussions about how to best deal with problems concerning sexual behavior, sexual function and sexual intimacy until we have a better handle on what’s normal."

Okay. I have to admit that last word there is where she lost me. I was fully behind her until she had to go and say science needed to discover whats "normal" in sexuality. 

I know what she meant but that just fosters the argument of what some (close-minded) people consider abnormal sexuality (I.e., homosexuality). When really it's usually just "sexuality" people are scared of and don't understand.

Still a good article. I like the "When I say I came for the science - I mean it"



Fashion Friday - Pinup

So, for me, there is just something about 1940s and 1950s "pin-up" fashion that I just find so appealing. I have a number of 40s and 50s inspired shoes and dresses in my collection. So when I came across these pieces on Pinterest today, I had to share as my Fashion Friday!!

Pinned here
Pinned here

Pinned here

Pinned here



...and only because I'm soooo ready for the sun to be back....

Pinned here

Pinned here



Yes, yes. I have a thing for black and red as a combination. No, I didn't go looking for only black/red items. I just can't help it. They compliment one another so well. There's just something sexy and alluring about the combination... the same attraction I'm sure that I have towards the pin-up styles.

What about you? Do you have a favorite fashion era?

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Handwriting.

In a chain of blog-readings I came across Dancing in the Raine and a blog entry (chain-letter/reaction) called Handwriting. Being on my lunch break and being someone who thinks you can learn a lot by a person's handwriting I thought it'd be fun to repost on my blog. 

Here's what you do...

  1. What’s your name/your Blogger name?
  2. What’s your blog’s name/URL?
  3. Write “the quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog”
  4. Favorite quote?
  5. Your favorite song?
  6. Your favorite band/singers?
  7. Anything else you want to say?
  8. Tag 3-5 other people


You can read Nikki's original posting here.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Replacing Friends

Find original here
So a few weeks ago I started watching How I Met Your Mother (thank you Netflix). It's one of those shows that for some reason (okay it's Neil Patrick Harris) is addictive and even though there are episodes or bits that I don't find (all that) funny I still keep going back for more.

After watching the first few episodes and realizing the characters are late twenties/going into their thirties it sparked some brainstorming in regards to a blog around the show and my own Almost-Thirty process.

Then today I came across this images on Pinterest today --> (I know its hard to read but click on the links for a bigger picture)

Holy Crap! Talk about television never being original!! 

Haha It's so true though! (okay so I don't necessarily agree that Chandler or Marshal are "the best one"s but whatever).

The funny thing is my first Surviving 20-Something blog "Where Did I Go Wrong?" I address the fact that (after having recently turned 27) my life looked nothing like a character on Friends. 

And the fact is that (on many levels) it's true about How I Met Your Mother. Aside from Lily being a Kindergarten teacher you have an architect, a lawyer, a news anchor and whatever it is Barney does. None of those are your "typical" jobs....

Where's the Admin Assistant?
Where's the Call Center Representative?
Where's the person working two jobs to make ends meet?

At least with HIMYM only has the characters hanging out at night (at a bar) and not all day everday at a coffee shop. However, both locations are below where the characters live. 

I don't know about where you live? But I certainly can't afford any of the apartments or condos above trendy shops....the nearest bar to be is a dive called The Pink Feather. Yikes!

As for everything else...well it makes could television...

The romantic and the hard-to-get girl (although I swear the thing that bothers me most is the mystery "mom" which something tells me we won't meet her until the show ends!!). 

The brainy guy. The womaniser. The sweet-heart couple. All standards in the archetypes of TV characters...

Also, and here's my biggest question....why don't these people have other friends? 

I mean, sure, occasionally we see a "work" or "school" friend interaction but you never hear one of them say "Nope, sorry guys can't hang out tonight I've got plans to go to the movies with Joe/Bob/Sue".

Is it just me?  Does everyone else only have four/five friends they hang out with constantly with no variation?

And how is it they just happen to all live in the same place as their best friends? Sure I have local friends but my best friends are scattered from one side of the country to another! 

Okay. I'm done. This isn't a blog about how MY life doesn't resemble television because, let's be honest here, one is LIFE and one is FICTION. 

My point though is that my generation grew up watching Friends and (on some level) fed falsehoods about what being in my 20/30s was going to look like. And now another generation is watching HIMYM and being fed the same lies. 

Where's the real-life-based characters? (And no I don't mean "reality tv") Where are the people struggling with their body image? Being laid off? Getting divorced? Trying to find themselves in this chaotic world without four/five best friends inches away to catch them when they fall. 

Who is going to write that story line?

Monday, January 23, 2012

Let it go...

Today I had plans to write a scathing review about an airline experience I had this weekend...

An experience that ended up with me in a bathroom stall at the Sacramento airport, crying before my flight home from SoCal. 

I had plans to come and spread the word about the -ism that was perpetuated against me by said-particular-airline. 

However, when I sat down at my computer I (re)found this image file sitting on my desktop and I realized that sometimes you just need to let things go....


...so while I am intentionally never going to fly via this airline again...I'm letting go of the anger, the humiliation and the self-hate that this experience caused.

Souffle Pancake

Souffle Pancake
Holy Souffle Batman! Look at this pancake!!

That's no ordinary pancake (obviously) that's a Souffle Pancake (similar to Dutch Bunny's or German Pancakes). I've had Dutch Baby's before....and have tried some of a friend's German Pancake before but this just seems like a whole other variation.

I saw this fluffy wonder of a delight this weekend on a DDD (that's Diners Drive-Ins and Dives for you non-Food Network people) episode. Guy was at Bette's Oceanview Diner in Berkley, CA and she's been making them for 17+ years. She apparently first found the recipe in an old magazine.

It just looked so yummy, and with my family loving pancakes, I had to try and find a recipe.

Enter my best (digital) friend Google. 


There were a few folks who found recipes for Dutch Bunny's; but those call for just mixing the eggs in whole. Bette's had her eggs separated and folding in beaten eggs whites - to give the souffle fluffliness.

Finally I found the one I think I'm going to try this upcoming weekend (I promise to share how it turned out)...I've also made changes to the recipe below based on what DDD showed being done.

3 eggs separated
1/2 cup half and half
1/4 cup flour
1 pinch salt
1 1/2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 tablespoon grand marnier (or whatever liquor you want)
1/2 cup strawberries + 1 tbl. sugar (or whatever fruit you want)

Preheat broiler.

Beat two of the egg yolks with the half-and-half (reserve the third yolk for another purpose). Add the flour slowly, stirring just enough to combine. Stir in the sugar, salt, melted butter and Grand Marnier.

Beat the separated egg whites until they form soft peaks. Fold them into the batter and gently stir in most of the berries, reserving a few to place on the pancake just before it goes under the broiler. (Bette didn't put any berries into the batter until it had cooked some; she said otherwise they sink and stick to the bottom) 

Heat a lightly greased 8-inch nonstick ovenproof skillet, or a heavy cast-iron skillet, over moderately high heat or until oil bubbles.

Pour the batter into the pan. Reduce the heat to medium and cook until bottom of the pancake is browned and bubbles appear around the edges, for 5 to 8 minutes. Arrange the remaining berries gently on top of the batter. 

Place the pan 4 to 5 inches below the broiler and cook until the top of the pancake is brown and the center is just set but still soft. 

Gently slide the pancake onto a warmed serving place, dust with powdered sugar and whisk it to the table. Serve with more sliced strawberries and raspberries.

Eating with Your Hands

This morning I found this article in the New York Times about eating with your hands, manners, and the (re)evolution of it in the dining world. I've been to a number of restaurants where you eat with your hands - Ethiopian and Moroccan mostly.


There is something about eating with your hands that just takes the dining experience to a new level.

I'm a firm believer that you eat with all of your senses. Everyone knows you eat with your mouth, and therefore "taste" and some will recognize smell...then there are those who realize we also first experience food with "sight" before "taste". Which is why I'm a love of making food "pretty" or appealing looking. Depending on the food you might experience "hearing" it - the sizzle of a fajita plate, the crackling of a well toasted crème brûlée - but so rarely to we touch our food.

Many of us can remember being told "don't play with your food" or "use your fork" as a child. So unless you grew up with a culture that encourage and expected you to eat with your hands this is a new concept completely.

But let me say it's something to experience. Don't let the saucy-ness of the dishes intimidate you, using bread or rice will help make the transfer of food from plate to mouth less disastrous.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Oooo Ruby Woo

Fashion Friday - Green & Rhinestones

Since I've been on such a big push lately about being plus-size and fashionable (read more here, here and here) I thought I'd start a new reoccurring blog topic Fashion Fridays! It'll be a combination of either some of my favorite outfits in my own closet, other fashionable plus size women or just a droolfest of Pinterest items I'd love to have in my collection.

Today, for the First Fashion Friday, I'm going with what has slowly become one of my favorite new outfits. A green tank/sweater set, lime green scarf and matching "diamond" jewelry (the sweater has rhinestone buttons)...so far I've worn it with jeans, black slacks and I can't wait for the weather to finally dry out some so I can try it with skirts.

Here are pictures and notations of where the items were bought.










To wrap up today's Fashion Fridays blog entry I'm linking to a blog I follow. She just recently hit 50 readers (yay!) and is having a giveaway in honor. Check out Stiletto Life here

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Pinterest

It's only 1:00 and I'm already ready to go home. It's been a slow/rough day. Last night/yesterday Portland got a few inches of snow - causing the town to slow down, put things on pause and have my work open "delayed"....all of this just threw my day off.

How is it already 1pm? 
I just had a second cup of coffee and still can't get going.
I can't focus.
I can't think straight.

I think I need a few minutes of Pinterest to help ease the building stress.

Here are a few fun things I found that made me smile:

 
Chihuahua and little tongue found here


Cupcake Fondue here
An amazing blue & purple door found here

Killer shoes here

This is what I can't wait for. GREEN found here



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