Wednesday, February 27, 2008

I heart Crockpots...

update: i forgot to mention that you should throw potatoes and carrots in with the roast to make it a more 'well rounded' meal (they turn out awesome...even if they are sticking out of the water at first they will sink in and get cooked!)

I'm one of those people who doesn't really like to cook. Don't get me wrong...I LOVE food, but I don't really enjoy the process of making it, especially after a long day of work. I would much prefer cuddling in my slanket with Google Reader to catch up on my blogs.

So its not a huge surprise that my favorite kitchen gadget is the crockpot. What could be better than something that slowcooks amazing food while you are at work?? I've been using it for some time to make certain dishes, but my recent obsession has been to find as many good crockpot recipes as possible so that I NEVER have to actually cook on a week night. I don't mind so much on the weekends cuz I'm not dead tired.

Anyway....I tried a new crockpot recipe this week and I think it is by far the best one yet SO i thought I'd pass it along. Awesome Slow Cooker Pot Roast. I'm not a big roast person usually, but this really was awesome...SO TENDER! Anyway... try it...you'll eat a delicious meal and the only prep time is the time it takes to put the stuff in the pot and then 8 hours later you serve it up!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Countdown...7 Months!!


Whoa! I didn't realize the date until my subject asked what the date was as she signed her informed consent...

February 20, 2008 = 7 months until
September 20, 2008 !!!


And we all know what that means!! Wedding!! Yay!!

I heart Google...

Again I may have just missed this one, but yesterday I learned of a fabulous little tool called Google Reader. Do you know of this??

It is perfect for blog lurkers like me. You enter in the blogs or websites you want it to check and it scans them every so often and lets you know when there is a new post! AND you can read all the blogs from the reader! (this part I don't know if I like as much cuz I like to look at the different add ons people have...)

I'm so excited, because checking each and every blog every day is VERY time consuming and disappointing when there isn't a new post....its going to change my life! Between bag folding, slankets, and the reader...I'm having a record month for life changing events =)

Monday, February 18, 2008

Sunday, February 17, 2008

this might change your life...

if you are anything like me you have no idea how or where to store plastic grocery bags. they are handy to have around so you don't want to get rid of them, but they are SO ANNOYING to store.

a colleague came up to me the other day and said... "I have to show you something - it changed my life" ok... this is what she taught me...

1. flatten bag so it looks sort of like a square


2. fold bag in half

3. fold bag in half again, then begin folding from the corner to make small triangles

4. see what i mean...

5. then tuck the little end (hard to take a picture and tuck..)

6. and you end up with a cute, very easily stored triangle!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

spontaneous romance...

Tuesday I got home pretty late and Grant was still at the lab. I started making dinner and realized we could use something a little special, so I lit some candles, a fire, and poured a few glasses of wine. I had hoped to have dinner on the table and everything by the time he got home, but it didn't quite happen. Instead he came home to me sweaty in running tights wearing my wedding shoes that came in the mail that day.





It was a really nice, relaxing nite. After dinner we talked for hours in front of the fire (Grant says this is when I proceeded to drink 3/4 of the bottle of wine...I think it was more like 1/2...)






Here's a little video we took...

video

Friday, February 15, 2008

Valentine Tradition

We aren't big Valentine's Day people. We found this out our first Valentine's together. We'd only been dating a few months and Grant said he would take me to my favorite restaurant- Bepe & Gianni's - for dinner. The only problem was it is also everyone else's favorite restaurant AND they don't take reservations. I had to hang out with dead people til kind of late that night so our plan was for Grant to head over when they open and put our name in and then he could just grade papers til I got there. As I'm writing this I'm realizing its not really a good story... but I've now written three sentences so I'm committed but I'll end with...I was too tired to go out so we ended up ordering a pizza and cozying up on the couch watching CSI (which I was obsessed with that winter).

Last year we decided that pizza and cozying up is more our style than a fancy dinner and gifts so we made it our tradition. Jess & Jon had recently taught us how to make pizza at home so I surprised G with a homemade heartshaped pizza with I LOVE YOU spelled in bell peppers.



This year we decided to follow up the tradition with a Papa Murphy's heart shaped pizza (my homemade ones have been too doughy lately). We invited Kendra over and tried to finish the Lord of the Rings Trilogy (which we started last week). We had lots of fun and are so happy with our simple little tradition!


Thursday, February 14, 2008

valentine's craftiness


i went into work early yesterday so i left early and was able to have a night full of crafts. time and motivation aren't usually on my side for things like this on weeknights, but it worked out. as you can see i made pink cupcakes with pink frosting and little pink hard candies on top AND little sewn heart cards. it was all very fun and i'm proud of my creations. i'll show you the process...

i mostly like this one cuz you can see my ring... oooo....ahhh! see the pink cake batter??

pretty, plump, pink...

obviously grant enjoyed...you may have to click on the picture to get the full effect

i found the idea for these cards on a blog (that i didn't bookmark so i can't direct you there). they were really easy, but so cute. you just cut the paper and then tack the hearts down with rubber cement. put a few stitches in the center with the sewing machine and voila...


i decided i worked hard so i should get a reward.. oh so good!



*** an aside... i just realized how everyone else but me was able to do things like center parts of their blog text or make it colored, bulleted, etc...wow apparently blooger is much more advanced than the 'edit html' tag leads one to believe. i will now be writing blogs under the 'compose' tab.***

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

today...


it has been so beautiful in Eugene this week. it has inspired me to run more (i've gone twice this week!)...it feels good to be out by the river again.

can't wait for the sunny three day weekend...

Monday, February 11, 2008

Wedding Cake?? & Florist & Candlesticks

It just keeps coming so I'm gonna keep going...

so my aunt emailed last week. she was talking to my dad who was bragging that i was making my wedding cake. she promptly informed him that no bride should make her own cake and sent an email saying she would love to pay for our wedding cake for us to relieve some stress and to make us happy.

we are going to take her up on it! i'm very excited, but also slightly sad to ditch the idea of making my own cake. there were many logistical things that grant and i were worried about. such as how to transport the cake, how early to make it, when could i frost it, etc. this alleviates all of those things...so that is good. i just want my wedding to still be kinda DIY.

i love this cake...



we also decided to forgo doing our own flowers...again kinda sad cuz i like the idea of doing everything on our own, but i also know myself and i'm a stressed out spaz in situations like these (i keep thinking back to my prom days and how snappy i would get at my mom...scares me). we chose to go with lemon halo...they are going to just do 'bridal party' flowers and seem like they will be VERY cool to work with.



a few weeks ago i was in portland meandering around with mom and lindsey and stumbled upon a little place called ikea. sooo fun. and weird that i like it cuz it is all so modern and i like more vintage/country/antique/old stuff. anyway we found some awesome candlesticks for the wedding on super sale. mom bought them all for us so we are kind of set in term of centerpieces...




wouldn't want to give too much away so you can guess if we got silver or gold =)

Shoes

i'm very post happy right now...this doesn't happen often so i gotta go with it while i got it (usually i read everyone else's blog)

anyhoo... i'm incredibly excited about these shoes i just bought so i thought i could share them.



do you love them???

i do... and they are going to be my wedding shoes... i think. i know i give everything away on this blog, but there will be some surprises i promise! you haven't seen my dress, right?? i love love love them and the fact that they aren't white is awesome, cuz they are very 'me' and very my dress. AND they have a wedge so i won't sink into the grass. the reason i am thinking of them so much is that i know they are sitting in the human physiology office at uo as we speak... i so can't wait to see how they look! bad news is that i won't get the shoes til tomorrow and my dress is at mom's house i portland...boo... I will just dream of how they look together...

crazy

i think i told just about everyone in the world how bad my work environment was when i started my new job. if you happen to be one of the lucky ones who missed the saga...try not to get me started, but the long and short of it is that i was hired for a full time job and ended up having NOTHING to do all day most days and when i did have something to do I had to work for a HORRIBLE woman who micromanaged like no other. (there is no animosity...)

moving on.. i wanted to take a minute to reflect on how unbelievably different my work is now. first of all the crazy lady was never my boss (although she pretended to be and even made me fill out worksheets titled 'how best to work with me') and sadly we didn't find that out til we were working for over two months. secondly we didn't realize that what she was doing to us/making us do (i.e. stamping 2000 envelopes with her name on them, going through documents that only our lab group would see to capitalize improper nouns such as interview room...this word DOES NOT need capitalizing!) were things that our REAL boss (a senior scientist with 5 current RO1s...i'd say he is pretty smart) would never ask us to do. he respects that we are not imbeciles and actually has already submitted an article to a journal with kendra and i as the sole co-authors. i'll get back to the point...the crazy lady finally quit and now no longer works with us! yay!

since that change occurred...my life has been a lot better. i don't know if i realized before how much being unhappy at work can affect the rest of your outlook. kendra and i have taken over the other lady's responsibilities so we are now kind of sort of busy and i actually don't mind going to work everyday. i am happy i won't have to do it forever, but i can now manage the thought of doing it for another 11 months. and it was all a blessing in the end because kendra and i did some major bonding while we were miserable and now have quite a little friendship. i'm happy to have someone who understands how this all progressed as only we can.

Truffle Shuffle and a cute puppy

This is the cute puppy... (i know again it is blurry...i struggle)



his name is jack and he belongs to our friends Joe & Janelle. he is 10 weeks old and oh so very cute and sweet and big.

grant and i signed up to run the truffle shuffle with tom and donna this past sunday. we were excited to run something together, but grant ended up with a hurt ankle sunday (due to some excessive basketball playing saturday). luckly joe & janelle decided to come hang out sunday cuz janelle was able to take g's spot and i didn't have to run alone. (she runs fast so i'm sore and tired today...made step aerobics an extra challenge) here are some pics...

me and janelle before the race


it was a very intense start (we all take 4 mile fun runs seriously)


crossing the finish line


whole gang...janelle, me, donna, tom, brad, b&l's friend, lawanda


it was fun... the rest of the day was spent acquiring a tote bag of free fabric swatches and eating at bepe and gianni's (joe and janelle SO spoiled us)!

Save the Date

I had a few people request a picture of the save the date after I sent them out. So... Tah Dah... here they are!! I know the pic is a little blurry, but I don't have a steady hand or a tripod (i'm jealous Jenni) and the lighting sucks... but its awesome anyway huh???



Jon
did all of the amazing design work and we just printed them out and added a few beads cuz I don't know how to leave things alone. I love that they are simple and cute and very 'us'

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Are you jealous??

I've been doing more blog lurking...lately on more bride/wedding blogs. I seriously could spend all my time reading blogs. It is my new favorite past time. ANYWAY... this evening I came online to check to see if any of you people had left comments on our wedding website after receiving save the dates (none of you had...shame on you!)... I proceeded to check out this wedding blog and there was a post suggesting the Slanket as a valentine's gift.

I immediately proceeded to visit slanket.com and bought one! Anyone who knows me knows that I love to be cozied up on the couch with my laptop and a blankie. Now I will be able to do it without cold arms/hands! I asked Grant if he thought it was ok to buy it (you know we're trying to save for a wedding)...his immediate response was 'What could be more useful...you'd use it everyday...DO IT!' This makes me so happy...guess I need to learn more about the simple things in life...



The biggest decision out of the whole thing was what color to get...I went with the green, but I really like the brown one too!

I'm so pumped and you are SO jealous!!!

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Whoa...an actual blog?!

Sorry...there hasn't been much bloggable material going on lately so we haven't had any updates. We've been in and out of Eugene the past few weekends. And work has been busy for both of us. The crazy lady that was working with me quit so Kendra and I took over her job! We are excited mostly because she can't make our lives hell anymore and we'll be busier. Here is us celebrating last weekend...we had a few bottles of wine and watched Poirot (which I am now obsessed with...so good if you like mysteries!).


...yes, we are wearing crowns...

This weekend was also fun-filled. We spent Friday night at happy hour with friends and then Lindsey came down for a visit! We spent the rest of the weekend making the save the dates for the wedding. Jon Meendering designed them for us and they are absolutely amazing...he has real talent!