Friday, January 21, 2011

A Pretty Lunch

I thought I'd share how I eat now: a lottttt of veggies and a bit of protein is basically the plan.  This is how I lost 50 pounds, and counting.  It's also really simple eating: easy on the processed foods, no real fancy recipes, everything as close to it's original state as possible. Oh, I love my food.

I made this on Tuesday, when it was snowing out and I was wanting something that was wintery and yummy. I think the colors are beautiful.  And it tasted exactly as I hoped it would.  Love it when it that happens.

Here's what went in the big wooden bowl:

*cooked beets
*sauted spinach and sweet onions
*goat cheese
*drizzled with Temecula Olive Oil Company's Citrus Reserve Olive Oil (sweet mother of pearl, that stuff is good.  my sister lives near temecula and introduced me. my bottle is almost gone and i've only had it a week. whoops!)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The Most Beautiful Quilt in the World

Our friend E makes quilts.  (That link will take you to a bunch of her quilts, including ones that have won awards.)  She's unbelievable.  She dyes (some of) her own fabric and whips these puppies out like nobody's business.  Last summer she offered to make us one, and we could hardly believe her generosity.  But we came to believe it, and she told us to pick what we wanted.  Sam and I spent days discussing this, finally settling on a strange system of discussing color schemes: we each brought each other books with covers we really liked.  Except that didn't really work.  Because I liked stuff like this:

And stuff like that made Sam feel like he was bleeding internally.  He was looking for something a bit simpler.  Finally, after stacks of books were on the kitchen table, we agreed that we both LOVED the colors and vibe of a particular region of Brian Kershisnik's "Nativity"--the part with Mary and Jesus:

  We showed that to E, and the pattern we liked best, and she took us to the fabric store to pick out fabrics under her careful direction.

A month or so later, she showed us the finished top, which we adored, and then she sent it off to her NEA-Grant-Winning quilting friend in SLC to be quilted.  And a few months later, while at E and K's house for dinner, E asked me to grab a chair from her bedroom and there it was, spread out at the foot of their bed.  I made a sound like this: "EEEEEhasflyhfalshllhgkkkkkk!" and Sam came running in to see what was the matter.  And there we stood, petting it, until we could catch our breath.  During dinner I insisted on spreading it out on the couch behind Sam so I could see it whenever I wanted to, Sam in a halo of quilt beauty.

[quilt of gloriousness]

I cannot get enough of it.  I wish I could carry it around with me all day.  When it's time for sleep, I'm happy because I get to be beneath it.  

[quilt, bed. nothing like a pretty quilt to motivate the bed-making.]

E, you are the loveliest.  It's the most lovely thing that's ever been mine.  Thank you. 


Monday, January 17, 2011

More Photos of the New Place

                                                              [cats, rug]

Finding rugs was hard.  We knew we needed them, that our living room(s) wouldn't be warm and living room-esque without them.  But finding ones we both liked proved harder than we thought.  Sam and I don't always see eye to eye, but when it comes to how we want things to look, we generally align nicely.  Or so I thought ...  Until we went to Home Depot and stood outside in a big white Rug Tent, and discovered we completely disagreed.  Then we went inside Home Depot, and disagreed some more.  Then to Target, disagreeing.  And out to Home Goods (a half hour drive), where we nearly bought one, but ultimately, disagreed.  And we came home empty-handed. 

                                                               [the rug + messy coffee table, disheveled couch. i decided not to care, or i'd never take pictures.]

Those were rough days, when we first got in the house.  Moving tries a relationship anyway.  Add in the messy buying process and the month in a hotel and by the time we got in here, well, yeah, we were arguing about rugs. 

                                                        [the "library" + my red skirt. i was taking pictures of the cats after church, and decided to just take pictures of the whole house.]

Things have settled now. More or less. (We found rugs we agreed on, thanks to our friends K and E, who accompanied us to a discount place called Building 49, and helped us decide.)  We still don't have enough storage space in the bathroom so we have to dig through a cardboard box to find the Q-tips, but we're happy.  The cats chase each other through the kitchen, through our offices, under our bed.  We cook meals together in our kitchen.  We sit on the couch and watch movies.  We sit at our desks in our offices and can hear the other person clicking the keys and it's pleasant. 

[kitchen, sam with bowl of pasta]

[kitchen, sam washing out pasta bowl]

                                                           [kitchen, inglenook.]

 [tadzio in the inglenook (he's not, technically, supposed to be there.)]

[the loo. not featured: cardboard box.]

                                 [my office.  what would you do with that big white wall?  i'm stumped.]

                                                          [sam's office.]

A recent scene from our life in this house: On Sunday, driving down our street, coming home from church, I spotted an item of furniture someone had put out to pasture. It looked like it could solve the bathroom cardboard box situation, so I ran in and got Sam and we carried it home, each of us gripping an end, waddling our way in our winter coats across and down the street. It was too big for the bathroom, but we think it will help our pantry storage, which is also lacking, and once I cleaned the snow off its feet, we got it settled.

Sam put on some Albert King blues music and we took down our Christmas decorations and Sam sang along, sometimes changing the words ("If we didn't have no bad catsssss, we wouldn't have no cats at allllll.") and all the while the kitties were there, circling the tree, looking up at us, wondering what on earth we were doing with their tree.  We couldn't figure out how to take the (fake) tree apart, so we opted to become of those people who store their tree intact and upright in our basement storage unit.  (My grandmother was one of those people, so we're in good company.)  Once we had everything downstairs, we sat on the couch, sighing, Sam's arm around me, both of us staring into the renewed empty space, listening to the blues, and feeling anything but blue. 

We think we like this place.  We think we'll stay.