Sound Bytes from my living room - Dodgers Edition
One of my favorite dishes to make, and one of my most requested dishes, is my spicy chicken marsala. Back when I was first on my own at the tender age of 19 I had no idea how to cook. My boyfriends Mother was an AWESOME cook and being Hispanic she cooked food I never ate before. I'd always ask him to call her to get recipes and she'd tell him "I don't cook with recipes, I just cook." So I had to learn the hard way, trial and error with lots of emphasis in the error.
One of the dishes I used to make as a Midwest whitey was pork chops with cream of mushroom soup served with minute rice. Yes, really. On one occasion I had bought a can of Golden Mushroom Soup on accident so decided to use it. It was a welcomed flavor to the very bland cream of mushroom. My boyfriend, now husband, always complained about how BLAND my cooking was. So this brings me to this dish I created out of trial, error, living with a Mexican and my love of cooking.
(I am pretty vague here since I am now happy to say I don't always follow a recipe, especially when it's one I have created)
3-4 pork chops (I've used many different cuts & thicknesses, bone in, boneless, you choose what you prefer)
1 can of Campbell's Golden Mushroom Soup
1 - 2 tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1-2 Fresh Jalapenos (amount depends on your taste and heat tolerance) diced fine
1 Shallot, diced fine
Package of fresh sliced mushrooms
Marsala cooking wine 1/2 - 1-1/2 cups
Chicken stock 1/2 - 1 cup
Chef Merito Pollo Seasoning (optional)
Extra Spicy Mrs Dash (optional)
In a large skillet heat olive oil on medium high heat. While it is heating up, season your pork chops with the Pollo Seasoning blend (best stuff I've ever used...EVER). Sear the pork chops until they are nice and golden on each side. Remove from the pan and put on a plate for now. They don't have to be cooked through, they will jump in the pool in a bit. While the pan is still hot, add the jalapenos and shallot. Cook until the shallot begins to caramelize, about 5 minutes. Add in the mushrooms and stir to coat. You'll soon notice the mushrooms will absorb all of the remaining oil left in the pan. Not to worry, because cooking them down will release their own moisture and become wonderfully delicious. I love mushrooms. Once the mushrooms reach their beautiful golden color, add the marsala cooking wine about a half of cup to start, adding more if you need to. This will deglaze the pan getting up all of the cooked on bits left from the pork and veggies. Cook down to reduce to about half. Add the can of golden mushroom soup, chicken stock, a few shakes of the Extra Spicy Mrs Dash and stir until combined. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and invite your chops back into the pool. Turn to coat all of the pork chops then cover and simmer for at least 30 minutes, turning the pork chops over about half way though. Remove the lid, taste for the possible need of salt and pepper (I added fresh cracked black pepper but only because I love it). If your sauce is too thin, leave the lid off and simmer to reduce it. If it is too thick, add a little bit of chicken stock.
Serve over mashed potatoes, egg noodles or rice with a nice ladle of sauce over the top and enjoy! I love comfort food ~ even in 100 degree weather!
This next series is going to be an intense one. The Giants are only 2 games back and there are 16 games left in the regular season. Out of those games the Dodgers only have one day off and that's after 10 straight games on the road. I truly believe the Dodgers can win it - and should win it. KEEP CALM AND BEAT SF!!!! FUCK THE GIANTS!!!! (I'm such a lady...lol)
On another note, I lost my 1st fantasy football game for week 1. However, I was the BIGGEST LOSER because I lost with 130 pts and I would have beat 9 other teams! So I am optimistic for my team this season. AND at 130 pts that was with one of my WR's not in the game, Alshon Jeffrey out for the 4th Qtr and my DEF getting -2 pts! DOH! I am pumped for Sunday - my opponent has no players on Monday so my one remaining player Monday could be the deciding factor IF I don't beat him Sunday first! First & Girl!!!!!
Have a great weekend all! I am one lucky Mama, my Son is grilling some fish tonight and making Anchos perfect Ranchero Sauce. I think it calls for some Patrón Silver with Patrón Citrónage Margaritas!
Today when I got home from work my youngest son (15) tells me he watched a documentary on 9/11 today at school. He said "Mom, I never saw footage from that day. it was so disturbing." My heart broke at that moment. It brought me back to that somber morning.
On 9/11/2001 my boys were 7 & 2. My husband went into work at 4:30 am and I was usually up by 5:30 to get myself ready for work and the boys ready for school & grandmas. I got a call around 5:50 am from my husband telling me to put on the news because an airplane hit one of the towers of the World Trade Center in New York. At the time we both thought it must have been a terrible accident.
I had the TV on and sat on the floor inches from the television in shock at the sight of the gaping hole the plane had left. I had no idea I'd be watching a second plane hit the next tower. I called my husband back and told him what I just saw. We both knew then it was no accident. Our main concern, at that moment, was our family in Manhattan. His Sister, her husband & our Nephew live in Manhattan. We both tried to call her to be sure they were safe but all lines were busy for the hours to follow.
About a half hour later which felt like seconds, another hijacked plane hits the Pentagon. I called my husband again crying. I've never been so scared in my life. For all I knew there were hijacked planes all over the country heading to all of the major cities. I decided to call work and tell them I wasn't coming in and to keep my oldest son home from school. I didn't want to be away from my boys if the country as a whole was under attack.
As I continue to watch the burning towers in disbelief, I see a person throw themselves from one of the towers over 80 feet above the ground. Eerily the person capturing this on film follows the body as it flails until its demise. Am I really watching this live? Is this a movie with a very brave stunt person? I wish it was the latter. I would come to learn over 200 people jumped to their deaths that day. Mayor Giuliani has said "You may think you would know what a body hitting the ground from that high might sound like, but until you hear it, you can't even begin to imagine the actual sound." My hands were covering most of my face as tears continued to stream down.
How can one wrap their minds around these planes striking the two towers, watching people throw themselves to their deaths, let alone watching the two 110 story buildings collapse one after the next. I couldn't believe what I was watching. My eyes were out of focus from the tears and my mind was reeling with worry for my Sister-in-law and her family. Seeing the brown debris filled clouds attack the civilians on the ground was like watching an end of days sort of movie, but this was reality. All I could do was cry.
In between the two towers collapsing, I later learned that after passengers and crew members aboard the hijacked Flight 93 contact friends and family and learn about the attacks in New York and Washington, they mount an attempt to retake the plane. In response, hijackers deliberately crash the plane into a field in Somerset County, Pennsylvania, killing all 40 passengers and crew aboard.
That day a lot of lives were lost, a nation mourned together. Many years later there is One World Trade Center in its place that reaches iconicaly, 1776 feet. It brings back hope, pride, remembrance and gratitude to this great Country. Kyle asked me tonight; "Mom, why does everybody hate the USA?" I simply said; "Because we're free."
I'll never forget September 11th, 2001.
Since I was a little girl I could not stand the smell of unwashed hair. I have to admit I have a very sensitive nose and can smell things most don't even notice. But for me, it's unwashed hair. I am not talking the kind of person who skips a day of washing to preserve the delicate hair follicles. I am talking the ones who walk by and a waft of indescribable stench permeates the air. It's indescribable but so very unpleasant. I used to sit next to a girl in my class in elementary school who seemed to not wash her hair for weeks. Maybe this is where I got the sensitivity to it but dear me, I cannot deal with it. Today a group of college students walked by me and someone had the stinky unwashed hair smell. Just about ruined my day.
I love Bobby Flay. I love how he takes grilling to the extreme and grills just about anything and everything. I know nothing about grilling except for the smell of charcoal and some times the occasional wood chips thrown in. I know I love the flavor it brings to foods and I know I loathe gas grilling. To me, why BBQ when it's with gas? You have a stove and an oven for that. Nothing beats charcoal or wood grilling in my opinion.
My oldest Son Jacob is an aspiring Chef and currently a line cook at Anchos. Anchos is a Southwestern restaurant and they pride themselves on cooking all of their fresh seafood, steaks and chicken on mesquite wood. My Son is really good at it. He comes home smelling like heaven after a long day over the grill. They even mesquite grill their vegetables for their homemade salsa. It's a nice smoky flavor and sometimes very hot and other times not so much. As we know how unpredictable jalapeno heat can be, it's a gamble. We get salsa to go by the quart. I love this stuff.
Back to the Flay. We own a couple of his cook books, one of them being my favorite; Boy Gets Grill. In it are so many amazing recipes. One of my favorite parts of the cook book are the sauces he makes. There is a honey mustard vinaigrette he makes to spoon over rib-eyes that is to DIE FOR. I never imagined something like that on a steak, but it is wonderfully tangy and delicious. Another sauce, which I will showcase here, is his Avocado-Tomatillo Sauce. I made this once to bring to a friends for dinner. He had gone to Alaska fishing and brought back a ton of fish. He invited a bunch of us and had a fish taco BBQ so I figured I'd bring something to accompany the many types of fish he was serving. It makes a large bowl full and when I set it on the counter next to some tortilla chips, the guests thought it was a dip and couldn't stop eating it. There was barely enough left to spoon over the fish tacos by the time it was ready! I guess that's the beauty of this sauce. It's versatile! Bobby mentions in this recipe that you can blend all of the ingredients together to make a smooth sauce, or add the avocado, cilantro and red onion at the end as I did. It makes more of a chunky sauce. Perhaps that's why people thought it was a dip.
Our friend Shawn had given us some Yellow Tail so we had decided to grill it up this past weekend along with some shrimp and corn on the cob. I made a batch of the Avocado-Tomatillo Sauce to go with the fish. It's a winner every time.
Bobby Flay's Avocado-Tomatillo Sauce (or Dip!)
8 tomatillos, husked and rinsed
2 jalapeno chiles
1/2 cup canola oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons of honey
4 ripe Haas avocados, halved, pitted, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 small red onion, finely diced
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
Last night I noticed a lot of crowing outside and my cat actually ran in as if she was scared to death. When I went outside, there were swarms of crows everywhere. I couldn't even begin to describe the creepiness of it. Every roof top I could see from my back yard was covered in crows. I mean every single one. I ran in and grabbed my phone to take a picture of our friend's house to show them. Afterwards I went upstairs to look out to the front yard and all of the rooftops on the houses across the street were lined with crows too. It was like I was in the movie The Birds! In about 10 minutes, every single crow was gone. It was wheird....with an emphasis on the h - even though there is no h in weird. OMG is it 5:00 yet????
This blog isn't about making myself look good. It's about writing what I am thinking about, how I'm feeling at the moment or just random acts of stupidity as I am about to do now. Last night was my long anticipated fantasy football draft. I had all sorts of "cheat sheets" handy and thought to myself "This year I'm going to draft smart!" How did it go you ask? See for yourself. This is going to be a long season and I already have a waiver dropping Austin Davis and adding Shaun Hill. I know...I still have so much to learn. At least there was only $50 on the line. You have to love how witty these hooligans at Yahoo are. Or are they Yahoos? Go ahead and have a laugh on me. It's almost the weekend! ~ Ames
I can hardly believe September is almost here. Wasn't it just Memorial Day? My youngest just started Sophomore year in High School, Football is right around the corner with Hockey to follow the month after. The Dodgers only have 29 games left in the regular season. WOW that was FAST!!! I'm not worried about them making it to the playoffs. I actually believe we have a really good chance to get to, and win, the World Series (Although, I attended Sunday's game where they could have swept the Mets, but they just weren't on their game AT ALL.) This is MLB's projection for probable NL West Post Season:
Which brings me to recommending this site for tickets to ball games, especially last minute! Saturday afternoon we decided to go the game on Sunday. I googled "best ticket agencies" and there was a top 10 list. At the top was http://www.ticketlodge.com/ with rave reviews. I searched the available tickets and found 3 for $57 each in section 14 field level! We usually pay more than that for Upper Reserve! Once I purchased the tickets it showed that the face value was $140 each! They were GREAT seats as you can see from my view! (That's a lot of exclamation points!!!!)
On another note, my fantasy football draft is tonight. Not knowing where I am in the draft pick order of 14 teams is excruciating. It's hard to have strategy in picking, not knowing. Gee...I hope I am able to get Sam Bradford in the 1st round. (Hahahahahaha....)
After realizing the epic fail of my Minestrone, I decided to make some comfort food. Earlier that day we saw someone on the Food Network making mac & cheese bites with a panko crust on the bottom. I went off of memory for the crust (which was a bad idea) and took a shortcut on the mac & cheese.
My youngest son Kyle is a picky, picky, PICKY eater. He gets that from his Mama. He has eaten the Kraft Mac & Cheese in the blue box probably once a week his whole life. It's one of his favorite foods. As he got older, he grew bored with it and started to have "adult" mac & cheese in restaurants. He surprised me by having lobster mac & cheese even! So one day at the store, I saw the Kraft Homestyle Mac & Cheese and decided to give it a whirl. OH EM GEE. I have to tell you, this stuff is great. It comes with the pasta, cheese sauce, spice packet and bread crumb packet. All you add is butter and mik (Additional grated cheese optional - but a must for us). This is so yummy that when I make it for Kyle, I have to grab a few spoonful's for myself. I suggest the baking option. I add a layer of freshly grated cheddar & Monterey jack cheese before sprinkling the bread crumbs over the top and baking until bubbly and golden brown.
Since I had these ingredients on hand, I decided to try the bites version. Kyle was all for it!
Saturday was one of those days that allowed me a lot of time in the kitchen. My husband is not a fan of soup, especially in the summer and even more so as a main dish. I LOVE soup. I could eat it every single day and not get bored. I think it makes a great main dish especially when there are so many ingredients. So I tried to find a soup I never made before and one that would keep my husband from whining like a little girl because I am making soup. Minestrone! I remembered that I had saved a recipe I found after watching an episode of Diners, Drive Ins and Dives. You can find the recipe here http://www.rosinesmonterey.com/News/index.cfm/ID/6.htm and my adaptation of the recipe here:
(Sorry about the quality of my photos - used my ancient iphone4)
Amy's Epic Fail Minestrone
4 quarts beef stock
3 pounds chuck roast, cut into bite size pieces
1 14 1/2 ounces can stewed tomatoes
1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
5 (8 ounces each) cans tomato sauce (I used 2 regular, and 3 El Pato for spice)
4 bay leaves (I forgot to add the bay leaves!)
1 tablespoon sweet basil
1 teaspoon oregano
1 tablespoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
3 teaspoons salt
5 teaspoons sugar
11/2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 onion, chopped
2 cups cabbage, chopped
3 cups bell peppers, chopped
2 cups carrots, diced
4 small potatoes, diced into cubes
1 bunch parsley, finely chopped
12 oz + 24 oz can kidney beans
1/2 pound small elbow macaroni (This is what I feel is the epic fail of the recipe)
Add the beef stock, meat, tomatoes (break up the stewed tomatoes with fingers as you add them), tomato sauce, bay leaves, sweet basil, oregano, cumin, black pepper, salt, sugar and garlic powder. Bring to a boil. Cover and keep at a slow boil for 1 hour.
Before adding vegetables, skim the surface of the soup of fat. (They don't mention this in the original recipe but I feel it is a must! Who wants greasy soup? Ew!) Just use a spoon and plop it into a bowl.
Simmer uncovered for 45 minutes or until vegetables are soft. Taste for flavor and adjust seasonings if necessary. I added some Cayenne Pepper and more salt. Add the pasta and beans and cook until tender.
Somewhere along the line it doesn't say "Serve Immediately!" because I would. If you let this soup simmer too long, which I did, the pasta becomes mush. It completely ruined the entire soup in my opinion. I don't know what I was thinking? Perhaps because I have had chicken noodle soup and the noodles don't ruin the soup? Perhaps because I have had Olive Garden's Minestrone and Pasta e Fagioli and the pasta isn't mush. Maybe I should have used shells? If anyone has advice please share. I ended up throwing away about 5 gallons of soup and an entire Saturday.
I am on the fence about attempting this soup again. I think I'd either forego the pasta all together or add it after warming up each batch so it is still al dente. I also didn't care for the chunks beef in it, but that's what my husband liked about the soup. Anywho, I thought I'd share my experience. Maybe someone can learn from my mishaps and have good success with the soup.
I'm Scandinavian. With the maiden name Skotterud, how much more Scandinavian does it get? It's in my blood and it's what makes me love the kinds of foods I love. Breads, Cheeses, Sauerkraut, Bratwurst, Rice, Shortbread, Pickles, Swedish Meatballs, Rye Crackers, etc. When I was little, my Mom used to make "Spare Ribs and Sauerkraut" often. I have always loved the comfort dish in it's simplicity. However, I also remember looking back, how bland the food we used to eat was.
Fast forward to 2014. I LOVE to cook. I mean love, in the sense that if I can find a dish that will keep me in the kitchen for hours on a Sunday afternoon, I am in heaven. I also have grown to appreciate full flavors in my food. Spice is the key to every dish! My number one "special ingredient" is adding jalapeños to almost everything I make. It adds so much flavor and takes an every day dish, like Chicken Marsala for example, to a new level. It has people wanting more every time.
This past week I realized I was craving Spare Ribs and Sauerkraut. It's typically a fall/wintery dish because it really warms the belly. I decided to try it in the crock pot so the time over a hot Dutch oven wouldn't be necessary. I also decided to add a few extra touches to the traditional dish to make it my own. I think it came out extraordinary! Even my oldest Son said it was very good, and he's not a big sauerkraut fan. I think the jalapeños, apple and bacon cut the tartness of the sauerkraut nicely. I also think the choice of beer complimented the dish as a whole.
So if you're so inclined, perhaps pin it for the fall/winter months so you aren't sweating preparing it AND eating it if you live in 100 degree weather like I do. If you're not a fan of sauerkraut but love pork spare ribs and are willing to try something new, giving this dish a try may just change your mind forever. It's that good. Vær så god! Vel bekomme!
1 pound fingerling potatoes
3 – 4 Jalapeños, sliced
1 medium brown onion, chopped
1 medium Granny Smith apple, peeled and chopped
3-4 slices thick-sliced bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
1 jar (16 ounces) sauerkraut, undrained
2 pounds pork spareribs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon caraway seeds
1 12 oz bottle of beer (I used Indio for its dark toasted malty flavor)
1. In a large skillet, cook bacon until crispy. Drain on paper towels and remove all but 1 tbsp. of the remaining bacon grease. (Side Note: Save the bacon grease for later use. It’s liquid gold when making other dishes!)
2. In a 6-qt. slow cooker, place the potatoes, jalapeños, onion, apple, bacon and sauerkraut, liquid and all, to the slow cooker.
3. Cut spareribs into serving-size portions; sprinkle with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, heat the tbsp. of bacon grease over medium-high heat; brown ribs in batches. Transfer to slow cooker; sprinkle with brown sugar and caraway seeds.
4. Pour in beer. Cover and cook on low for 6-7 hours or until ribs are tender.
5. (Optional) During the last hour, mix all of the ribs in with the rest of the ingredients to meld the flavors before serving.
Last night I finished watching Breaking Bad. Just as I felt after the last episode of Dexter, LOST, The Sopranos, Six Feet Under, Seinfeld, Cheers, Sex and The City, and too many other shows that consume my life, I feel empty. Walter White, Jesse Pinkman, Saul Goodman and even Hank are going to haunt my dreams until I can find my next addictive series. Right now I am at the beginning stages of withdrawal. "Those people" who say "Oh I don't watch TV" are not normal. They are the ones playing sports, exercising, have hobbies, spend their time outdoors and wouldn't succumb to the prison of a television series. Who does that???
Here are some of my favorite lines from Breaking Bad. I am going to miss hearing them. Yo, especially from Jesse. Bitch!!!
1. "FUCK YOU BOGDAN! AND YOUR EYEBROWS!" – Walter White
2. "Look, Skyler, I just haven’t quite been myself lately. I haven’t been myself lately, but I love you. Nothing about that has changed, and nothing ever will. So right now, what I need is for you to climb down out of my ass. Can you do that? Will you do that for me, honey? Will you please, just once, get off my ass. You know, I’d appreciate it. I really would.” – Walter White
3. "Yo, Gatorade me, bitch" – Jesse Pinkman
4. (to Walt and Jesse) "If I ever get anal polyps I know what I'm gonna call them' Jesse 'Magnets!" – Saul Goodman
5. "Ah, like I came to you, begging to cook meth. Oh, hey, nerdiest old dude I know, you wanna come cook crystal? Please. I’d ask my diaper-wearing granny, but her wheelchair wouldn’t fit in the RV." – Jesse Pinkman
6. "This is my own private domicile and I will not be harassed…bitch!" – Jesse Pinkman
7. "Yeah Bitch! Magnets" – Jesse Pinkman
8. “You clearly don’t know who you’re talking to, so let me clue you in. I am not in danger, Skyler. I am the danger. A guy opens his door and gets shot, and you think that of me? No! I am the one who knocks!” – Walter White
9. Oh well, heil Hitler, bitch. And let me tell you something else. We flipped a coin, okay? You and me. You and me! Coin flip is sacred! Your job is waiting for you in that basement, as per the coin!" – Jesse Pinkman
10. “Some straight like you, giant stick up his ass, age what- 60? He’s just gonna break bad?” – Jesse Pinkman
I found a new avatar creator: http://jeuxcool.com/jeux/plus/semi-realistic-avatar-creator/ and experimented with different facial features, hair styles, colors, etc. After I made these three I realized they are all part of my persona. I wish I could change my looks this easy, but each one is a part of how I see myself.
The top left is the rebel in me. I love the edgy look of her sassy red short hair, the studded choker, the dainty nose piercing. Yet, she's still made up with just the right touch of make-up to accentuate her eyes. I see her as a smart, no-nonsense independent woman. This is the part of me most repressed. I'm working on it.
The middle one is probably the most relatable part of me. I long for the perfectly messy, yet elegant hair. The kind of hair that looks amazing whether she tries or rolls out of bed. Her casual style is what suits me in my mind, even though I pretty much wear dresses on a daily basis. I see her as a mother, a career woman, a friend and a genuinely normal person. If you look closely, she has double pierced earrings on one ear - her way of being who she is without too much attention. She wears sweet lilac colors on her eyes to match her clothing giving a soft feel to match her personality.
The final one is the girlie-girl in me. She looks like a Princess with her flowing blonde hair, her big doe-eyed blue eyes with ruby red lips. Her gown is a steel blue to accent her eyes and there is a look of innocence in them. The details of the bow on her dress and heart earrings depict her desire to be loved and to love.
If I put these three all together, I can see me. Part rebel, part every day woman, part Princess. Ames, The Warrior Princess Mom!
What I want to know is "why in the hell wasn't I watching Breaking Bad when it was on AMC?????" Oh Em GEE - is this show AMAZING. I know, I'm SO behind the limelight, but I am in awe of just HOW AMAZING the show really is. Saturday I watched all of Season 1. Sunday I almost got through Season 2, but our stupid AT&T Uverse Internet server was down. The only plus to that was I was able to watch the Dodger game since it was on ESPN. Had my Netflix not gone down, I would have finished Season 2 without a doubt.
As much as Breaking Bad had peen publicized, it never dawned on me it was such a great show. Bryan Cranston is PERFECT in his role as Walter White. Complimenting Bryan's role is Aaron Paul as Jesse Pinkman. I have a soft spot for Jesse, as he reminds me of some family members I have who have/had the very same issues. I can only imagine what the next 4 Seasons have in store for them. I just know I am grateful for Netflix and Chromecast, as long as my internet server doesn't crash again.
Speaking of the Dodger Game, poor Hanley Ramirez! First Ramirez was hit in the shoulder by Carlos Martinez in the fourth inning, (which Clayton Kershaw had his back by hitting Matt Holliday - Good Job Kersh!). THEN he gets a Trevor Rosenthal fastball straight on the wrist! It's a Cardinals conspiracy I tell you! In the playoffs last season, Joe Kelly hit Hanley in the ribs with a 95 MPH fastball giving him a cracked rib. I know the Cardinals are one of the best teams in the NL but quit playing dirty you jerks! Tell you what, let's play nice and you can have Matt Kemp for Yadier Molina. Agreed?
First of all, today is a complete turn around compared to yesterday! A lot of factors contributed to the why, but I am so happy today it's surreal. YAYMEAMY!
This week, the fantasy football league I have been in for the last 3 seasons "My Wife Hates This Sh*t" opened up the new season. Right off the bat our teams started the shit talking. I fucking LOVE it. I don't know why I love to write so much, but I could write a post in there the size of a novel if they'd let me! I am not a talker. Not in the slightest. But put me behind a keyboard and a place to write my opinions, feelings, concerns, nonsense and shit talking and it's ON.
I will admit I am more comfortable in the company of men than women. I have my good girlfriends, of course, but I'm not a shopper, not a gabber, not a "let's do lunch" kind of girl. I love the camaraderie a group of guys have, standing around a BBQ or in front of a great sports game on TV with a drink in their hand talking bullshit. It's just who I am. There is no drama. There is an upfront demeanor men have where hey can say things like "Dammit you look like fucking shit today, what the hell happened to you?" with a response of "FUCK YOU". LOL! You tell that to a woman and she'll get her panties in a bunch and tell you how rude you are. It's just all in fun. Don't take it so serious. I still am a girlie-girl with full make-up, jewelry and the occasional stilettos, but I can talk like a drunken sailor (especially when I AM drunk LOL) and shit talk with the best of the guys. I can hold my own and am just as passionate about my fantasy football team as the men are. As a matter of fact, I take my team very seriously. I am glued to ESPN Red Zone on Sundays (I get a kick out of Andrew Siciliano's commentating too) with my trusty Chromebook intensely following my stat tracker. I am screaming with joy when my players score a TD and screaming obscenities when my QB just threw an interception. I am a Wife, but I fucking LOVE This Sh*t!!!
42 days until my draft...tick tock tick tock First & Girl is gonna ROCK!
Last night I stumbled upon a movie I never had seen before. It had already started, but I was instantly intrigued by the way the director shot the scenes. And it starred Jared Leto. The movie was "Requiem for a Dream" and it was released in 2000. After watching the movie, I was left feeling very somber, yet very grateful.
When I was a teenager from the age of 15 - 18 I had a drug addiction. Thankfully I never got into the extremely hard drugs like heroin, but I did my fair share of illegal, very addicting, life wrecking drugs. If I hadn't stopped, however, I know in my heart I'd have succumbed to the harder drugs. The movie depicts the probable consequences of drug addiction. It is ugly. It is frightening. It is so very sad. Some of us are the lucky ones who come out clean and never look back.
This movie is a must see for any person who is addictive. It doesn't just cover a heroin addict. It covers addiction to cocaine and pharmaceuticals and what lengths people go to get their drugs. Ellen Burstyn does a fantastic job of a depressed, lonely old woman addicted to her prescription drugs. What happens to her should make any Pharmaceutical company and over-prescribing Doctor ashamed.
Jennifer Connelly is amazing in her character. It is so sad to see just what she puts herself through to keep her drug addiction. It's even sadder, to me, that men use women like this to satisfy their perversity. When I had my addiction, I found myself in many shady places, with many shady people. Looking back, being so young and naïve, I put myself in a lot of danger. Again, some of us are the lucky ones who come out safe on the other side. I doubt many do.
Jared Leto plays the main character who is in love with Jennifer Connelly, but they both obviously have drug addictions. I won't go into much detail about what happens with him in the movie, other than to say he was superb, as he always is in his acting roles. I adore Jared Leto. I didn't watch him much in movies or shows when he was young, I missed out on that. I really fell in love with Jared's voice. The 30 Seconds to Mars album, "A Beautiful Lie" won me over. Jared's voice is so dynamic. He can reach high and low notes with a smoothness so out of character for that sort of music. He can scream like hell and reach so high with so much volume and intensity it gives me chills. I can get lost in his music.
Then there's his beauty. Yes, beauty. He's got one of those faces that is so perfect, so structurally beautiful, he can't be described as handsome. There isn't a ruggedness to his face. His eyes are soulful, light blue and big. His mouth is perfectly proportioned with just the perfect natural shade of pink. Even when he has full facial hair he's beautiful. He's definitely on my man-crush list.
So if you haven't watched "Requiem of a Dream", I recommend you do. Just be prepared to watch something more uplifting afterwards. Seinfeld is always a good choice.
"I'm out there Jerry, and I'm LOVIN' every minute of it! - Kramer"
Since I haven't blogged in a while, and since I don't have much to say, I'll just whine a little. (Ok, A lot....)
I wish I was on vacation. Somewhere so far away that it takes an entire day to travel there. I want to feel my toes in the sand, or in a lake, or feel my feet on the deck of a private boat. Yes. Yes please. I want to have enough wine to where my glass is never empty. I want to breathe in salty sea air or fresh mountain air. So Cal air is so gross. I try not to think about it or else I start to get anxiety. Have you ever flown into Ontario Airport in the summer? Especially coming from somewhere beautiful like Minnesota where everything is green and abound by lakes. It's like descending into a pit of brown. The terrain is brown. The air is brown. It's rather depressing.
Onto the next whine. (I wish I had a full glass of wine while I whine too!) I am trying to break my addiction to sunflower seeds. Spitz Cracked Black Pepper to be exact. Yesterday I had some David's Extra Spicy Seeds and they were so salty my tongue now feels as if I ran it across the desert sand with shards of glass mixed in it. The Spitz aren't as salty and they have the best flavor in my opinion, but nevertheless, they still hurt my poor tongue. I am what you call an addictive personality. It's all or nothing for me. So yesterday I threw away my stash of several bags of seeds and today I am a seed free girl. Yay!
What was up with Puig in the Home Run Derby? I had such high hopes for him. I think we all know he can hit the hell out of the ball. The announcers said maybe it was nerves. I don't know what it was, but I didn't like it. I hope he can redeem himself today and be the true All-Star he is. Come on Yasiel, bring back Puigapalooza Por Favor! Sé el All-Star que eres!
Last whine for the day. MasterChef's Courtney Lapresi. I CAN'T STAND HER. I haven't had this much loathing for a person on TV since Tony Vlachos (Survivor) and Juan Pablo (The Bachelor). She is SO CONCEITED and SO ANNOYING and SO EVIL. I seriously want to pull her off her pedestal and stick her high heels in each of her eyes. I read another blog (http://www.stockingblue.com/tag/courtney-lapresi/) where the author calls her "Cuntessa". I am not a fan of the beginning of that word in most cases, but boy does it fit here. On top of that, her choice of lipstick color is beyond obnoxious. It seems that Gordon has a bit of an infatuation with her and makes her feel like the Queen of England. I don't know why. He usually doesn't have tolerance for such people. All I know is I hope she chokes on all of her hate mail. She's got to have a ton of it!
Now...Go take on the day.
Representing my favorite teams in my office! I am reserving room on the right for when the Dodgers win the World Series (Let's Go Dodgers!) Baseball was always my favorite sport. I still love it, but boy am I missing the excitement of Hockey already. I love my new pennant of the Kings - those toothless smiles, the beards...so much to be proud of!
I was married into being a Rams fan - I will admit. I did attend a game in 1994 against the LA Raiders, of all teams. I think there was a stabbing and whole lot of fights. Seriously. But when they moved to St Louis, I just kinda followed them because there were no other LA Football teams and I refused to follow the Raiders. Thankfully they moved to Oakland I think that next year. The most fun I've had being a Rams "fan" were attending games in San Francisco against the 49ers. I loved how many Rams fans were tailgating! It was so awesome - especially when we won!
These days I am a FANTASY Football fan. This will be my 4th season managing "First & Girl" - hoping to have learned a lot of hard lessons the past few years and come out with the perpetual trophy this year! Our draft is already next month and before I know it, my Sundays, Monday nights and Thursday nights will be my favorite parts of the week! I think I will have to make a "Fantasy Football" Category soon...I feel it coming...
In case you're wondering why I have so many notes on my bulletin boards, I work for a University for the Undergraduate Associated Students. I know I have mentioned how much I love my job, and they are the reason why. Whenever they graduate a part of me gets sad - but I have my memories of them all around my office. What you see here is just one wall. There are reminders everywhere of students I have become close to in the past. Each unique, wonderful, driven, talented and ever so smart. I am lucky to be in the midst of such high achieving young individuals. It fills my heart with joy.
Now....Dodgers you better win in Colorado! Don't lose your recent MOJO! Beat the COCKY ROCKIES!
Finally, Happy Independence Day!
“You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4th, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism.” — Erma Bombeck
I have always been drawn to animation (is that a pun?) and it just grows more fascinating with each year. The technology amazes me. The capability of the creators to still use their talents and being able to take it to a whole new level is more than exciting.
I love the story behind this piece. Cells becoming humans, the innocence of youth, the wonderment of young adulthood and finally realizing true love. It's simply beautiful. I cannot stop watching it so I thought I'd share it with you. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
Happy Friday ~ Ames ♥
I was looking through some of the texts I received recently from my youngest son Kyle (soon to be 15) and came across these two he sent me. I think he's trying to tell me something. He's got quite a sense of humor!
Hmmm I wonder where I can get that glass??? LOL
Finding therapy through writing, self-reflection and the pursuit of what defines me.