the best birth control

Monday, March 29, 2010
As I was thinking of what to write about from this past weekend, I turned on what I thought was Chelsea Lately but I was a bit too early. Instead, it was the end of Keeping Up with the Kardashians.

(Insert my mouth dropping open)

I had no idea it was the birthing episode.

I also wasn't aware that Kourtney pulled the baby from herself.

For those of you who haven't seen it yet. Yes, from herself.

She just reached down and pulled the baby out.

Out of herself.

I'm still sort of flabbergasted.

However, I was quickly knocked back to reality by the BF running down the stairs to turn on VH1 classic to Peter Cetera's "Glory of Love" video. He felt compelled to sing it to me in boxer briefs as I couldn't get now two disturbing images out of my head.

Dove Love

We've officially been in our new house for a whopping two weeks. In the beginning, I always wanted to have a few friends over to see the house in it's "before" stage because we haven't really done anything to it yet.

The blog gods somehow heard me and I was offered a red carpet party courtesy of Dove. Yes, the same Dove is the deodorant and does the amazing real beauty campaign.
(It's about time someone did that.)

To me, it was a no brainer.

As I was contacting friends to come over, I quickly found selecting a date became an issue. People couldn't commit to this day, then I was out of town, blah blah, you get where I'm going.

When we finally could pick a date, my friends all eagerly committed once they heard it was Dove.

Sample conversation with just about everyone:

Me: "Hi, so I've decided on this day to have you guys over to see my new house. I'll have appetizers and wine. What do you think?"
Friend: "Sure, I guess I'll come but I might be late."
Me: "OK, well as a part of the party, you will get a free stick of Dove deodorant and a bead necklace."
Friend: Now very interested, "Wait, did you say Dove?"
Me: Not thinking THAT would coerce my friends to come over, "Yes, I have a stick for everyone and a necklace."
Friend: "I use Dove, what scent is it? Is it cucumber & green tea? That's my favorite. I only use Dove."
Me: "Ummm. I don't know. I don't remember."
Friend: "Well, can you find out, that kind of determines if I come."

Friends scoping out the jewelry and deodorant

Samples next to the precious TV

Well, someone had to apply it.


Now, it's your turn. I have five sticks of Ultimate Visibly Smooth deodorant in Nature Fresh to giveaway to you. Just leave a comment by April 2, but, you could always share an embarrassing sweating moment as well.

Disclosure: Dove provided all necessities for this party including product and necklaces as gifts to my guests.

need a ghostbuster

Wednesday, March 24, 2010
We've been living in the new house for almost two weeks. Initially, we were moving so many things in, it didn't really give me time to think and make sense of our new surroundings.

We were so focused on getting everything in. Then we were focused on getting our belongings unpacked - for good.

It hit me the other day that I'm not exactly comfortable in this house.

I can't quite put my finger on it.

This place doesn't really feel like mine yet.

At first, I thought it was because we haven't painted yet, so I picked out a few paint swatches and stuck them on the walls to start thinking about colors.

Then, I figured it out.

There's a ghost in here.

Yep, don't shake your head at me because I'm pretty certain there is a ghost in this house. Maybe several.

The house is old which makes it very possible that someone has died in it in the last 80 years. It has a funky crawl space that is the actual attic, so it's even more possible that someone was locked in it and died. (Yes, my mind goes there.) Lastly, I swear closets are opening by themselves and there are no gusts on wind anywhere near the doors.

See? I've convinced you, too.

When I came to this realization, I shared it with the BF and he looked at me, then rolled his eyes and said I've watched one too many Lifetime movies. True that.

But today when I walked in from work today, I barely got a "Hi" in before he said, "Babe, I think we a ghost." And, I didn't even need to say, "I told you so."

Maybe I should call this lady for advice?

UPDATE: When I slammed a drawer this morning in my dresser that's on the same wall, the door popped open. (Mind you, the dresser isn't up against the wall either.) Guess the ghost doesn't like the door latched?

dancing machine (or so we think)

Monday, March 22, 2010
Whew. That was one hell of a long week.

After a quick (and very warm) trip out to LA, I knew I had to be relaxed and ready for my cousin's wedding on Saturday night.

Lauren - if you read this - I would like to apologize in advance for a few things.

I'm sorry the videographer followed our table around on the dance floor. (Normally great music can make even the whitest of people think they can dance.)

I'm also sorry my brother (and Jake, Al and Tim) made friends with the DJ and tried to steal the microphone and make shout outs to you, Dave and anyone they knew in the room.)

I'm even more sorry they played Bad Romance by Lady Gaga and that I felt compelled to bust out my pathetic attempt of the video choreography. The only part I got right was the claw. (Please edit that out of the wedding video, it's just better for everyone involved.)

On with the pictures.

My mom, aunts and cousin

Lauren and Dave

my brother, the dancing machine

it's never a bad night with an air guitar or two

don't stop believin'

closing out the night with a bang

when I was a brownie....

Wednesday, March 17, 2010
It's hard to believe (I know) but years ago I was a Brownie. Not technically a Girl Scout, but a young dapper Brownie, wearing my brown vest proudly with all my badges my mom so nicely sewed on for me.

Do you need someone to rake you yard? I would if I received a badge. Babysit my brother you ask? Of course, as long as it was badge worthy.

I think I was only a Brownie for a whole two years. (Mom, if you are reading this, feel free to comment if that isn't accurate.) I never graduated to wear the green uniform. After a memorable sleepover in a cabin with my troops, I had enough of the troop (and the outdoors), so I begged my mom to let me quit.

The real reason I quit was because there was no competition from the girls. Outselling them in cookies was super easy. I kicked some serious cookie-selling ass in my little troop. I hit up all my aunts and uncles and walked around my neighborhood begging everyone to buy cookies. I buttoned my badged-out vest, grabbed my order sheet and shiny purple pen and strutted down Concord drive liked I owned the street in my jelly shoes with socks.

When I see a Brownie or Girl Scout, I smile and think of all the wonderful things they are learning from their troop. They are learning to volunteer, about nature, about friendship and leadership. But more importantly, I could still outsell their little asses one box of thin mints or caramel deLites at a time.

Did you buy Girl Scout cookies this year? What is your favorite one?

moved in.

Monday, March 15, 2010
Well after a long three days, the BF and I are officially moved into our new place.

I believe I must have a guardian angel watching over me because the weather held out while we moved all day on Friday. The day before our we moved and the two days after were dreary, rainy and cold. On Friday, it was a beautiful 60 degree weather and not a raindrop in sight.

Leading up to the move, I was pretty concerned that it would pour because the forecast was predicting nothing but that. Plus, it was just me and the BF moving our little apartment because he was convinced we didn't need any help. I, on the other hand, was not.

How could I lift a couch? And a love seat? And the entertainment center?!!!

Well somehow I developed Wonder Woman-like strength and kicked that apartment's ass, one piece of furniture at a time.

The largest truck, with a sweet turtle

I lifted those with just one hand

Behold the amazing driving skills. He only went on the curb and ran over some of our grass. MUCH better than I would have done.

Now that this move is finished, we can get onto our regularly scheduled program.

Respect your Elders

Wednesday, March 10, 2010
I'll be the first one to admit that I've said, "My parents don't know anything."

I believe I've said it thousands of times when I was between the ages of 3 until about 22. I always thought I knew it all. Because in my head I did. Any advice my parents gave me wasn't right because "they don't know what they are talking about."


I'm taking back that.

I'm pretty sure my parents know everything. And, I'm going to share some wise words according to my dad, Greg.

Growing up, he was infamous for his talks and "isms" and I'll now share his words of wisdom with all of you. These are sayings my brother and I have grown up hearing, rolling our eyes at, laughing at and probably will repeat to our kids at some point, if we ever have them.


"Allison, I've forgotten more than you'll ever know."
(This was normally used after my brother and I would try to argue with him about some random topic and how we were right.)

"You can't fool me. I've done more delinquent things than I can remember."
(This was often said after my brother or I would lie about if there was or wasn't alcohol at our high school parties while trying to explain we looked like hell and had been up all night. As a child of the 70s, he ensured us that he did more delinquent acts than both of us combined would do over our lifetimes.)

"Control the things you can control in life."
(Normally said if one of us was bitching about something that we couldn't change related to grades, coaches or referees. He was a basketball referee for years.)

"Don't ask me 'why' questions. I can't answer those."
(Also related to if we were whining about something that didn't go our way.)

"If ifs where fifths, we'd all be drunk."
(Both of us still have no clue what this has to do with anything, but he often says it to us. We are still scratching our heads on this one.)

So, on this random Wednesday in March, let's call our parents and say to them what they have always wanted to hear, "Mom and Dad, you were right.....Can I have $50?"

Weekend in D.C.

Monday, March 8, 2010
Remember when I was a blogger? Me too.

With the purchase of that so-called home, a busy week at work and a secret trip to Washington D.C., I haven't posted in a week.

We all ventured east to surprise this girl for a few days of way too much fun and not enough sleep. You see, we surprised our friend Katey with "happy-engagement-you-are-getting-married-in-three-weeks" kind of party. Are you following? My friend, Gretchen, came up with the idea a few months ago and after lots of planning and date changes, we pulled off one hell of a surprise.

Here is Katey, in awe, and not sure how the hell we all ended up in her city and she not know a single detail. She kept repeating, "I can't believe you guys are here" over and over at lunch.

As I sit here and write this post while watching the Oscars, I think it will be more fun for everyone if I just post a few pictures to kick off your Monday. Between the amazingly fun weekend and the six hour car ride, I'm exhausted from laughing, drinking and hanging out with some of the best friends in the world.

And to think, we all met back in junior high and still remain friends.

Hanging outside Obama's house. I tweeted to meet up but he was too busy.

Action shot of the group

a group photo of high school friends

the boys bonding

all the ladies

We completely surprised our friend Katey and have lots of incriminating photos to prove our reunion in D.C. really happened. It went by too quickly and we all agreed we need a yearly reunion.

In 2040, I'll be 57

Tuesday, March 2, 2010
The never ending saga that is known as purchasing a house is over.

Here's a preview of pictures of us at the title company, signing our lives away until 2040! I stumbled over my words when the title guy said, "first payment in May 2010 and last payment in May 2040."

Me: "Whhhhhatt? 2040? I'll be..well, I'll be 57!
BF: Laughs at me. Then tells the man, who is now confused by my reaction and realization that I will be 57 one day, to continue with the explanation of whatever crazy document he had in front of me with huge numbers.

The BF handing me the check. The largest check that either one of us written mind you.

Me looking at the check to verify that I see THAT number

Hiding behind the check that we are nervous to turn over

We turned it over and will legally be homeowners tomorrow. Wowza! Here's to having cool and decent neighbors who don't mind a little Britney, Madonna and Lady Gaga mash-up in the summer time for their listening pleasure.

chef's school 101

Monday, March 1, 2010
A few months ago, I entered a contest on Cleveland Foodie's site and on Facebook and won three free Viking Cooking School classes courtesy of Heinen's. The BF and I have talked about signing up for a class or two because I've heard good things from friends. Plus, the BF thinks I can't cook (he can't either) so it was a win-for-win for both of us.

On Friday, we were present (slightly late) for our first workshop class called Date Night: In Sicily. The BF is half Italian and loves everything pasta, so I thought it was the perfect beginner class for both of us.

The menu consisted of roasted red pepper bruschetta, a grilled endive and radicchio salad, spaghetti alla Norma and mocha semifreddo.

Chefs Eva and Ron were there, walking the class of 12 through the whole process and we were paired up with another couple. Our meal turned out wonderful - it really did but I found ways to cut around some of the steps we had to do. For instance, I don't have a gas burner so I don't think I could roast a red pepper and I would also buy mozzarella versus doing the curd thing. Plus, we drank wine with our meal and I found my new favorite old vine zin blend by Brazin. Although, my group really thought we should be drinking wine throughout the meal and I continually asked Ron when he would be opening the bottles.

Next up are two more classes called French Bistro and Mexican Fiesta later this month. However, we might be adjusting one of these for a Chef's Table or another demonstration because the BF was jealous of the people sitting down and drinking, while we were learning all the techniques. I'm pretty sure the whole point of the class was to learn new dishes to cook and pick up a few techniques.

Have you tried formal cooking classes or an avid Food Network fan?