Silver Linings

Monday, June 23, 2014

Mondays are always hard, but I think they're really hard after an especially nice weekend. Also, why are the nicest weekends always the ones that fly by the fastest? I vote we put a day in between Saturday and Sunday. Who's with me?

My perfectly lovely weekend began on Friday after work, when I met up with Pam and Patricia for some adult beverages. Pam always picks the best places for us to grab a drink, so once again, we left it up to her to do the planning. After an extensive parking adventure, Patricia and I met up with Pam at Charlie was a sinner., and yes, that's how it's spelled on the sign. It's a vegan bar owned by the same person who opened HipCityVeg in Philly, and since Patricia is a vegetarian, we figured it would be a nice change of pace. The atmosphere was really fun, even though the space was small and kind of loud, but I'm pretty sure that is the norm for a bar at happy hour on a Friday. The cocktails were... expensive, but interesting. I had a Singapore Sling, which you don't find on many menus, and this was the drink that made me discover that I can, in fact, ingest gin... when I can't taste it. (I think it tastes like Christmas trees. Gross. This drink, however, was lovely.) Pam had some crazy beverage called Escape Velocity, involving tobacco infused Johnny Walker, and Patricia had something called Purity of Essence, which featured aloe vera and cucumber.

Left to right: Patricia, Pam, me
We also grabbed a bite to eat and I realized that I do not do well at vegan restaurants. I can't eat tofu, fake meat scares me, and I'm allergic to nuts (and many fresh fruits/veggies). I ended up eating a "detox salad" (whatever that is) that was pretty good. After finishing up here, we walked around for a bit and landed at Caribou Cafe, a French-inspired bar/restaurant. Because I am totally a grown-up, I ate an apple tarte with ice cream for dinner... and had a glass of wine. (I think I need to work on my adulting...)

On Saturday, I spent most of the day in bed, which was absolutely lovely. Ken had to work at Lowe's, so I brought him a Chipotle burrito for lunch and I spent his lunch hour with him. I also ordered a grill for Victoria and Vinny, since we get 10% off everything at Lowe's (thanks, Ken!) I think I totally confused the guy selling the grills because I didn't know my (Victoria's) phone number or address off the top of my head, and I had to make a phone call to decide if I wanted an extended warranty, haha. Fortunately, it all worked out and we were able to save them close to $100! It's going to be pretty interesting when Ken and I go in to buy our own grill in a month or two, haha. Let's hope we don't have the same salesperson.

Saturday night, I met up with Victoria for dinner and then we watched Somm, a documentary about 4 guys studying to take the master sommelier exam. Seeing footage of the vineyards and the wine making process instantly made me want to be back in Napa on our honeymoon again! The science of oenology is absolutely fascinating, and in another life, perhaps I will be a winemaker. One thing I will never do, however, is take the master sommelier exam. There is a crazy amount of information you need to know. And yes, I know I'm going to medical school and I'm going to be a doctor, but the ability to taste a wine and tell you not only where it is from and the fact that it has notes of "freshly opened tennis balls, decaying violets, and white florals" but what YEAR it was made? Totally beyond me.

I really did enjoy the documentary though, because I love and appreciate when people have an absolute passion for something the way that I do for medicine. You could tell by listening to these guys study and talk about the exam and their hopes and dreams of becoming a master sommelier that this was something that was a part of their souls. I realized recently that unquenchable passion is something that will automatically draw me to people, and I love finding people who exhibit that personality trait. It's an intensity that is rarely matched, and I find it absolutely stunning. After the documentary, we drank some more wine, ate brownies, and talked about life. It was so lovely to catch up with her in person. Even though we live about ten minutes apart and talk almost every day online, our real life interactions had been brief and limited to dropping things off to one another, so it was really great to just sit on the sofa and laugh. More of that, please.

Sunday was another lovely day. I slept in and then spent a few hours deep cleaning the bathroom and the bedroom. Luna was either really disturbed or really excited by my use of bleach in the bathroom, because she wouldn't stop meowing and trying to get into the shower. I finally organized the piles of clutter that had started to take over every flat surface in our room, so that was nice, too. I also did something amazing.

That, my friends, is the bottom of the hamper. We may never see it again.
I found the bottom of the hamper! It's empty! Well... it was. For a whole night. Like, 8 hours! Then we woke up and threw our pajamas in it. I even managed to fold and put everything away before the cats could lay on it (and trust me, they tried.) I even remembered to hang up the wrinkle-prone items right when they came out of the dryer. It was a momentous laundry night in our house.

Also, I probably need to get out more because I am this excited about laundry accomplishments.

During all of this excitement, Levi stopped by for a bit. After Ken finished grading, he joined us in the living room and I learned how to play Mario Kart on the WiiU. I haven't played Mario Kart since my brother had a Nintendo 64, so as you can imagine, it did not go very well, haha. It was really fun though, so I'm sure I'll be playing some more in the future. At 6, we turned on the US-Portugal game, and I watched my first ever soccer game on TV. I spent most of the time being confused, but Levi used to play soccer so he was able to explain most of the rules and what was going on. I made dinner and after the game, we watched Iron Man, because I somehow missed seeing that (and the rest of the Marvel universe movies) and Levi and Ken decided that I needed to get on that train. I really liked Iron Man (shocking no one) and I'm pretty excited to see the rest of the movies. According to Levi, the next one up is The Incredible Hulk, so I'll have to get it through Netflix.

That was my lovely weekend. And even though today is Monday, it's a full work week, I have a ton of stuff to wrap up in the next 22 days in the office, and I now have to add keeping up with my summer med school assignments to that... there are good things. Here are some things that are totally making my life right now:

1. Rimmel Stay Matte Liquid Mousse Foundation

I got this foundation in an Influenster box a couple of months ago and was afraid to try it because most foundations are 93 shades too dark for my freakishly pale skin. On a whim, I decided to try it and thanks to the Influenster people having sent me the lightest shade possible, it actually worked! It's provides better coverage than the Maybelline FitMe powder I had been wearing, but it's much lighter than the FitMe liquid foundation that I had used before. Plus, it's not that expensive, which is great. I am in love with the Tarte Amazonian Clay foundation, but $38 for a tiny bottle really isn't what I'm up for right now. I'll definitely keep my powder around, but this is a nice alternative for heavier coverage.

2. Polishing my own nails.

I am usually WAY too much of a spaz to polish my own nails, but I'm way too cheap to get a manicure because I inevitably screw it up on the way to my car, so I try and do it myself anyway. More than half of the time, it's a total disaster and I end up taking the polish off and spending the rest of the night cleaning up nail polish from various places it isn't supposed to be. Like on the cat. ANYWAY, I saw this polish in "Mint Mojito"  at Target (my happy place) and for $4, I decided to give it a try. Shockingly, I didn't cover my entire living room in mint green polish and I even managed to get it on my nails! More shockingly, I didn't wreck my manicure 28 seconds after applying it. Feeling proud of myself, I polished my toes too, but that isn't nearly as exciting. I will definitely be picking up this brand of polish again, because as much as I love Essie and OPI, $8 for nail color is a bit steep.

(Side note: I buy my beauty products based on a few things. As you can tell, price is one of them.)

3. YARN!

So, I have this problem. I own a lot of yarn. I have an issue where if I go into a yarn store, I can basically guarantee that I'll be leaving with something, even if I have no earthly idea what I'm going to do with it at that moment in time. As such, I have a large, underbed storage container FILLED with nothing but yarn. And knitting needles. But mostly yarn. A lot of it is craft store yarn, but there is some extra-special nice yarn in there as well that I love dearly. Last night, I was trying to organize the stash and it was extremely overwhelming. I would like to get it done before we move so the yarn is less cumbersome but... we'll see how well that goes. Also, I'm trying to decide between two patterns for a baby blanket for Sarah and Josh's little boy, who will be making an appearance at the end of September.

via Classic Elite Yarns


both images via The Purl Bee

I love them both, but I am leaning towards the chunkier one b/c it just looks so COZY. I had really wanted to learn to crochet, but I can't seem to get myself in the same room with my crocheting friend, Julie, and plus the last time I tried to learn, I totally sucked at it, so I think I'll stick with knitting. What do you think, blanket 1 or blanket 2? Also, not sure what color I'll be doing it in. The nursery is Winnie the Pooh themed, so something bright and cheery, for sure. Regardless, yarn makes me happy, and knitting makes me happy (when it isn't making me want to pull my hair out) and I can't wait to start this blanket (and also finish that shawl... finally!) I have plans to go to Loop later this week to get two 4 hanks of gorgeous yarn wound into center-pull cakes, too. I'll have to try my hardest not to add to my ever-growing yarn stash... but I make no promises.

And other things that are nice about today, even though it's Monday:

- It's not raining.
- It's not 90 degrees.
- I'm getting a massage at 5:30.
- I have no plans tonight, other than that massage.
-  Ken and I are booking our tickets for Jen and Mike's wedding tonight!
- I remembered to pay the $7 bill I had left at the dentist's office... finally.
- I received a book for free to review from NetGalley. I'm already pretty excited, and I can't wait to share the review here.
- Best news of all? It's time to go home!

I hope everyone else had an easy Monday. We're almost done this one for the week!

- A


  1. First of all, I just watched Somm a few weeks ago, and it was really good! Those people though... I felt sorry for them. I especially felt sorry for their spouses :)

    Also, I may or may not have an entire 8-drawer dresser with yarn + yarny stuff in it. Oops? Is that second blanket brioche? If so, I just made a brioche stitch baby blanket and it was SO FAST to knit up, if that sways you at all. I do love the pattern on that first one though. I really want to make this blanket ( for myself, except I'm having trouble parting with the $7 for the pattern. [Speaking of Purl Bee, I'm totally going there next week when I move my sister to NYC. I sense trouble.]

    1. Oh God, I felt SO bad for the candidates, too! (And their significant others, haha.)

      I had to look up what stitch the second blanket was, actually. According to the pattern, it's Cartridge Belt Rib. I really love it, and I'm thinking that's the one I'll be picking up soon. :)

      I've been trying to rewind all of my yarn balls into center-pull cakes using my yarn baller from Knitpicks... it's taking forever. Last night, I spent an entire episode of Scandal untangling yarn-barf, haha.

      AND OMG, PURL BEE! I want to go!!!

  2. This completely reminded me that I wanted to watch Somm! So thanks for that :) Also, gin is the worst and definitely tastes like the forest(but now that you've said Christmas trees....well, maybe it IS Christmas trees and not the forest exactly). Ugh. Vodka, please!

    1. It's SO good! Definitely watch it with a glass of wine in hand. I am the worst at discerning wine flavors/smells, so I kept trying to figure some of them out... but it didn't work. It was still delicious, though!

      And I agree, vodka (or tequila!) please! Although, I highly suggest trying a Singapore Sling because it did NOT taste like a Christmas tree.


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