Thursday, June 30, 2011

Hat boxes

I can never think of what to blog about on Thursdays. I've exhausted all my topics from the weekend, and I'm really looking forward to the weekend, so much so that I usually write Friday's post long before Friday :p
But that is why I have book marked links. I see things on the internet and on Thursdays I dig them out and share them with you. This Thursday I'm going to share a little website I found that sells hat boxes.
Do you LOVE hat boxes? Because I LOVE hat boxes. This site allows you to choose from all kinds of sizes and colors and shapes. Isn't their show room adorable and exciting?

All those boxes and in all those colors! The room itself isn't much to look at, but man do I want a hat box. The best part about these hat boxes is that they're made in the US out of non-toxic recycled materials. I like local, healthy products, I like them even better when they're awesome.
Sarah's Hat Boxes
And the store is apparently fairly nearby! oooooooh can you say August Road Trip? I can.
You may be asking yourself what on earth am I going to do with a hat box. Fair point. But Sarah's Hat Boxes has a part of their website that is just a list of what you can do with a hat box. The whole website is pretty low tech, and some of the items on the list are a little silly. But I think I'd use a hat box for: old letters, christmas ornaments, storing scarves with a lavender sachet, art supplies (like the crayons, markers, glue and hole punch that wander around and are never in the same spot), gloves and mittens (a great way to store winter stuff) and gifts (Tallman's family is totally getting their gifts in hat boxes this year!).  Some of my favorite suggestions on this list are "crowns/tiaras" because we all have those and they're just lying around too!, and canisters (canisters of what?)
Suede Horse Hatbox

If you love hat boxes you'll enjoy the site, it seems that they have hat boxes in all sizes and some that are just ridiculous--ly Awesome! Like this faux suede horse, or the suede leopard print, some have Norman Rockwell Designs on them. Oh man. I'm getting so excited by the Christmas gift possibilities!

Back to studying, but go check out Sarah's Hat Boxes! Such cute stuff!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Homegoods Rocks

No this isn't a post about rocks. This is a post about a trip I took to a TJMaxx with a very large home goods section and their incredible amount of glassware.
I took pictures. But I left the store with a pair of strappy wedge sandals and a movie so the trip was not for naught! (all pictures are my own)
 Check out this awesome tray. It was metal, but had an awesome embossed alligator skin pattern on it. I liked that it was metal because then you could use it outside or for drinks that sweat.
 I almost bought one of these books. They were beautifully made, and they were secret storage spaces. I love books, and I want a library in my home some day, and in that library you better believe there will be fake books!
 Tallman wanted me to bring him home a Puma. So I took a picture of this tiger. Can you see Sherry from Young House Love painting it white and adoring it? No? Me either, its pretty silly looking. So is the baby giraffe in the background.
 AHHHHH THE GLASSWARE! There is so much of it these pictures do not do it justice. There were cloche jars and tops for cake plates and three foot tall candy jars and little jars and round glass jars and skinny glass jars.
Do you see how crazy it is?! If you need glass jars get your butt over to TJ maxx because oh man do they have a lot right now. I liked looking at the jars and thinking of them full of Jelly Beans and Reeses Pieces. Yum.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Weekend Cooking Adventures

As the bar draws near (29 days!) expect fewer and fewer posts from me. Not because I don't love you all, but because I'm really busy studying.

Professional Multi Chop
This weekend Tallman and I were able to hang out quite a bit, and when we have time/energy one of the things we like to do is cook. A few weeks ago he made the most amazing fish tacos with his own sauces, salsas, fried fish fillets, and really out did himself. This weekend, I'd been wanting to try a chopping contraption Tallman had received for Christmas. Its like a slap chop but fancier. As seen to your left...

From Pinterest
See what they're making? French Fries. hmmm ya know whats better than french fries? SWEET POTATO FRIES. Yum. So the plan was to make sweet potato fries this weekend, and they were super easy to make. Slice, toss so covered in oil, then sprinkle with a rub that was basically 1/2 tsp peprika, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp black pepper, and 1/4 tsp onion powder.  Then spread them out on a parchment lined cookie sheet and bake for 20 minutes at 450. Done. AMAZINGLY DELICIOUS.

Tallman wanted to have another fun cooking moment, so he suggested we make bacon wrapped dates stuffed with goat cheese. I, of course, was fine with this plan, having had them in tapas restaurants before and loving all the ingredients. Unfortunately we got side tracked during the baking process by watching Social Network and we didn't check them. They became tiny burnt turds. Inedible. Disgusting. It was really sad. We're pretty sure the oven was both on too high and we left them in too long. Let me tell you people, the difference between 20 minutes at 375 and 30 minutes at 450 is the difference between this:
From Pinterest
Sad Face :(
and this:

Those were my weekend adventures in the culinary arts. Delicious sweet potato fries and sad burn bacon wrapped dates.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Sleepy Kitty of the Week

 Parsley says "good morning, and happy monday, now would you please let me get back to sleep?"
One of my personal missions in life is to disrupt Parsley's sleep as much as she disturbs mine. I think she actually likes it.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Barnyard Pic of the Week

Happy Friday! Does everyone have their weekend plans set? Does it involve a hammock?
Perhaps a cow? What about pigs? Goats? No?
That's ok...
These are my own personal pictures. They're taken from the pasture behind a restaurant near my parent's house. Isn't it peaceful looking?
Happy Weekend!

Bar Prep: Week 4

We're almost half way through the classes portion of the course, and there are only 33 days until day 1 of the bar exam. And dear readers, let me tell you, I am looking forward to August.

Al and Steph- we're on for any amazing plans you want to envision in August.
August also holds an two day Indian wedding, the first of my high school friends to marry, and what will possibly set a high bar for fun and dancing and awesomeness for the rest of us.
In August I'd also like to go to the beach. Because dear readers, friends, random internet ghosts, let me tell you: I'm pale. Sure, I wear sunscreen and this is so I won't prematurely age my skin or die of skin cancer, but even with the sunscreen I'm pale.
Today I saw one of my closest law school friends with his girlfriend, and I was struck at how pale he was. His girlfriend looked like it was summer, healthy glow, a couple freckles since the last time I saw her, etc. And next to her he looked like he lived underground (which other than the fact that he hangs out on the 6th floor of the library is basically true).

I know these August plans/skin tone don't seem to really be a reflection on how studying for the bar is going. But if you were, or are, in the thick of things studying along side me, you would understand how looking forward to August and getting some sun is related to the work that still has to be done. Its a carrot. (The stick is the idea that if I don't do well in August I'll have to do this whole damn thing over again.)

Other than looking forward to fun and sun, studying is going well. I'm doing what the checklists tell me to do, wishing there were more hours in a day to study, and enjoying it when I decide to go home early instead.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Thursday is the day before Friday

We're almost there, and in the mean time let me share something I found a while ago on the interwebs:
Seems to be going around the internet, but no one claims original ownership...
I like: "maintain your weight" because that is such a healthier attitude than constantly trying to lose weight, "praise other people" sometimes we forget that other people need to hear good job just as much as we do, and "always make copies of important papers" because seriously, I don't lose things often but when I do I seriously regret not having made a copy.
Remember folks, tomorrow is Friday!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

H's Kitchen Essentials--Spatula Edition

I'm sorry I've been a bad blogger. I've never shared with you my favorite kitchen tools! Sure I've told you about kitchen tools I want. But I've never told you about my favorites. The things that when I'm in a kitchen I absolutely must have (good thing I always buy them for friends as house warming gifts... aren't I kind?)
Now these aren't the ONLY things in my kitchen, but these are so useful I find myself buying them over and over for friends, for me and loving them.
William Sonoma Fish Spatula
I honestly don't know how to function with out this fish spatula. Its amazing for fish of course, but it is terrific on pancakes because it can get all the way under them, its wonderful for straining because it is slotted you can tip your pan and drain water/juice/liquid/etc, its awesome for cutting cake slices, for stirfry (you can scrape the pan), and generally my favorite took for whenever I have to manipulate food in a pan.

William Sonoma Silicone Spatulas
Kitchens that don't have these shouldn't be called kitchens. They are silicone so they are heat resistant so you can use them in anything. But they're flexible enough to frost a cake with or get the last bit of hot fudge out of a jar. The wooden handles are great because they don't get hot when you're cooking and leave the spatula in your tomato sauce while you wander away. And the silicone tops pop off so you can put them in the dish washer and won't ruin the handle by doing the same. I use these for almost everything (including some things I also use my fish spatula for).
They're only downside is small and easily overcome-able, they can retain smells. Knowledge came up with an amazing way to get around this though. Take a sharpie and on one set write "Savory" and on the handles of the other set write "sweet", another option is getting two sets in different colors and having red be savory and blue be sweet. Really its only a problem because these spatulas are so amazing that you'll use them for everything, and one day you'll make jambalaya with them and then the next day you'll go to scrape down the sides of your cake bowl and be completely weirded out when you go to lick the extra batter off your spatula. (Tallman has done this, so have I, so has Knowledge, the spicy food--> cake problem is real!)

Ok I've talked long enough about spatulas, the word spatula is silly, go back to your everyday lives. Also, Williams-Sonoma didn't pay me to write this, but if they're listening I'll take some free spatulas. Also, I'm pretty sure other places sell these spatulas (Le Cruset has some silicone spatulas that are essentially the same, and you can get to match your dutch ovens!) but I own the ones from Williams-Sonoma, so I feel best qualified to talk about those.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

A little mental trip: to the south of France

Lets go on a little mental trip... we won't go far, and we'll only go in our minds.
From Pinterest
From Pinterest
From Pinterest
From Pinterest
From Pinterest
Food, history, flowers, architecture, design... yup this was a nice mental trip... now back to work!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Father's Day

Happy Father's Day!

Congrats to new fathers, thank you to father figures, and a super duper thanks to the men who helped to give us life!
It takes two... well not really anymore... but it does take two to make an easement appurtenant... uhoh I'm bar-studying-broken.

I have a pretty great father, and I spent a very nice day with him, we grilled, ate and drank single malt scotches.

What did you do this fathers day?

Sleepy Kitty of the Week

Monday? Seriously?

This weekend was as short as this position is ridiculous. Parsley is not a lady-like sleeper.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Barnyard Pic of the Week

I stumbled upon this lamb a few days ago and just had to share it!
From Pinterest
Happy Weekend!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Lady Friends

Last weekend was BUSY BUSY BUSY! I went to a cookout, drove from parents to the city like 5 times, attended a bridal shower, made oreo cheesecake cupcakes, and went to a bar with some friends for fried chicken.
The best thing about this weekend though was all the women, sorry Tallman. The cookout featured college friends that I love and do not see very often. It was great to hang out with them and hear whats going on and their funny stories and just be friends. The bridal shower obviously featured women as well and I got to spend some quality time catching up with high school friends that I don't see very often but used to see all the time. Then at the bar I hung out with some MORE women who I see slightly more frequently but are still always fun and interesting, which is probably why we're friends...
I went to a women's college and before that I went to a girls camp, and while I have a lot of guy friends and I like hanging out with guys, sometimes I forget how awesome women are and how great the company of close female friends can be.
So thanks ladies for giving me an awesome weekend, we should hang out more often... maybe after I do this Bar Exam thing.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Bar Prep Update, Part 3? 4?

I don't even know what update this is. I must say that through my bar studying--so far-- that this blog has been equal parts enjoyable (ahhh a break) and annoying (ugh I need to post something for today, but I really should be writing an essay).
Let me tell you what my week days look like the past two weeks: up at 7am or earlier, in to school by 9am or 10am if I'm at my parent's and there is traffic, reviewing notes from the previous days class, doing the homework problems or essays, reviewing, and then at 6pm I have class, which goes until 10pm-ish. Then go home, sleep and repeat.
Its kinda hectic. The days are very long, I only talk to other humans either in class or my parents or Tallman, I frequently get many questions wrong, so its disheartening work, and at the same time I am trying to keep stress at bay. (That last part is where the ahhh, blogging, a nice relaxing break, comes in.)
 Enough complaints here are the pluses:
I'm taking a class that has checklists and I swear its worth the $3,000 the class costs for those checklists. I LOVE checking things off, if it weren't for that, I would do significantly less of the work. Its like little goals that, since one of the checklists is online, turns colors when you achieve them. Its extremely rewarding.
One of the people in my class is going bonkers under stress, but I know its because he has high expectations for himself and everyone else. Because of his high expectations I find myself making sure I attend class, even when I'd prefer not to, or doing optional assignments because I know he'll want to talk about them and I don't want to disappoint. (I brought him cupcakes yesterday to help with the stress, so our friendship is a two way street, he motivates me with high expectations, I bake.)
The library at school is heavily air-conditioned.
Because I'm at school 12 hours a day I don't have time to snack constantly, so I'm hoping I'll lose a couple lb's while studying.

That's all for now, I've really got to get back to Real Property essays.

I've Got Gadgets and Gizmos a plenty...

What young woman doesn't recognize the title from Ariel? Well you should be slightly ashamed if you don't. Go out and watch it. Then sing it at the top of your lungs.
I wanted to share with you this AMAZING new gizmo I got. Its an iphone case from TRTL BOT and you can stick cards in the back of it, like, for instance your metro card (or your license and a credit card). It has eliminated the magic wallet from the things I carry around daily, which is super useful! All I have to do is tap my phone at the gate and I'm in, and since I usually have my phone in my hand anyway I don't have to rummage through my purse, backpack or have my entire wallet out, which I really like. Also, its very secure back there, its not coming out. I didn't snap any personal photos but here are a few from their website. Also, they're really prompt with shipping. Definitely recommend this item!
Oh and did I mention its made from recycled materials and super duper sturdy? Well it is!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Momma needs a new pair of shoes!

Well I don't need a new pair of shoes, but last week I wore a pair of sandals that hurt one day and it had me looking at options.
Jcrew Espadrille Ballet Flats
JCrew Lillibeth Leather Sandals
Ked's Jute SlipOns
Sperry Slipons
Then another day last week I wore a pair of shoes that were cutting into my feet so hard core that I still have blisters after a 10 minute walk downtown. After 10 minutes of pain torture, I ducked into a shoe store and bought the first pair I put on, and then didn't want to take off.
Soludos Espadrilles
I think that not wanting to take off a pair of shoes is a good reason to get them. I bought these for $35, but they're selling on shop bob for $27, and they are super cute and comfy. I totally recommend the Soludos!
I do not recommend these from Jcrew though, normally I love Jcrew, but the straps are too thin and they cut into your feet almost immediately, because the bottom of the shoe is so heavy and flat with no give its kinda heavy so all that weight is on these really thin straps and it digs in like craaaazy. Also, because the bottoms are leather you have to scuff them A LOT before you don't slip and fall in public while wearing them. Just a warning. Don't Buy These. If you buy a sandal from Jcrew with this kind of hard, stiff, leather bottom, scuff them a lot before wearing them, and buy ones that hold on to your foot securely.

Sleepy Kitty of the Week

Yawn! I am not ready for it to be Monday.
Neither is Parsley.
She would like you to turn out the lights so she can go back to sleep please.

Oh well Happy Monday!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Barnyard Pic of the Week

Dad is reading Goat Song, Allison suggested this week's picture, I'm just so glad to be sharing my love of goats with people!
Have a fantastic weekend!
From Pinterest
I want a fort like this, if I had a goat, and a goat fort might plant ivy or something on it, so it looked less stark, and so the goats could munch on it. What is better than an edible fort? Nothing!

Anthropologie Kitchenware Droooool

Lets get this out there: this is a fantasy post. All my kitchen supplies are in my parents basement with no hope of being seen for at least a year. But I saw one of these things in the Anthropologie store and loooooove it, another I saw on a blog and LOOOOOOVED it and the other I've been seeing everywhere and it makes me giggle. So I'm sharing with you. :) Ain't that nice of me?

Laguiole Steak Knives
I like these steak knives almost as much as I like steak (which is a lot, btw). They're colorful, apparently very sharp and the description says they have beeeeeeees on them. HA! Too bad they're expensive, way too expensive to justify buying and putting in my basement for a year. Right?
Rippled Coupe Glass
I love this glass, I go into Anthropologie and fondle it. Pretending I'm celebrating a major event, or just drinking champagne for the hell of it. I love champagne but my nose is the wrong size for flutes, its always awkwardly in the way. This glass is adorable and I wouldn't have to worry about my nose!
Bubbled Beverage Dispenser
I've been seeing photos of this everywhere! It is super hilarious looking. It makes me want to make lemonade, or have a party, or have Knowledge make sangria in it. It amuses the hell out of me. I showed it to Tallman expecting a reaction of some kind, given that it makes me giggle, and his response was something like "why would you want that much lemonade?". Useless! Oh well. at $300 its not going to be mine any time soon. So I can continue to giggle at it from a distance.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Baking with Oreos

This weekend I'm going to a very very mini college reunion and I have been put in charge of dessert. I jokingly told the host that I'd bring a bowl of sugar. What I'm considering bringing really isn't too different, calorie wise.
I feel like, at least in my part of the blogosphere, there has been a lot going on with oreos and incorporating oreos into baked goods. Tallman made oreo chocolate chip cookies for the superbowl and we agreed that they're amazing, but really best fresh out of the oven, so that the oreo is all gooey inside. But I thought I'd gather some of the oreo based recipes I'm hoping to try, if not this weekend then soon.
(Full disclosure, Tallman loves oreos, they are the one item of food he is guarenteed to have in his apartment, and always picks more up when he goes to the store, so maybe thats why I have oreos on the brain.)
Oreo Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookie
First: The Oreo Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookie
Basically: make chocolate chip cookie batter as usual, add a cup more flour. Preheat oven to 350, mold cookie dough around oreo, put on cookie sheet and bake 10 minutes.

Cookies and Cream Cheesecake
Second: Cookies and Cream Cheesecake
Based on the picture, its in a mini muffin tin, based on the recipe its standard muffin tin. I'm more inclined to use the mini muffin tin so they're more manageable.  Also, might use the double stuffed oreos. The recipe for this one is basically put oreo in cupcake liner in muffin tin, pour cheesecake over it, bake.

Oreo Balls
Third: Oreo Balls.
This is definitely a winter one, because all it is is crushed up oreos with some cream cheese rolled into balls and then dipped in chocolate. This is a treat that I'm definitely going to try come winter! Right now I'm pretty sure they'd melt and become and ever loving mess.

Triple Layer Cookies and Cream Crunch Bars

Fourth: Triple Layer Cookies and Cream Crunch Bars.
Ohmygoooooooooood! Layer brownies with oreos submerged in them, bake. Then crumble oreos and put them on top, then cover with melted chocolate and peanut butter chips. Ta Da! You've created the chocolatelyest treat in the world. My teeth hurt thinking of it, but I want to try it so badly!

Fifth (and Final before we go into a collective blogger chocolate coma): Oreo Cheese Cake Bars
No picture. Sorry. Its basically oreo crust in a square pan, then cheesecake with chopped up oreos in it. Baked, then eaten with gluttony.

Well I hope you enjoyed this tour around the oreo baking world. I know I enjoyed it!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Mental Vacation

Tallman is in the Caymans this week, and while I'm extremely jealous that I elected to stay here and study for the bar rather than hang out on a tropical island, I'm also very glad I made that decision, bar studying is a lot of work!
But that doesn't mean that I can't take a break from studying and go on a mental vacation, courtesy of Mr & Mrs Smith... I invite you to join me :p
Cotton House, Mustique
St Barths
Parrot Cay, Turks & Caicos
Little Good Harbor, Barbados

I wish I new how to sew...

Well lets amend that, I know how to sew. I can sew very well actually. Buttons, hems, etc. But I can only sew by hand. Which is obnoxious, and tedious, and hard to do in a straight line for a really long time.
What I really wish, is that I knew how to use a sewing machine. Sherry's battles with sewing on young house love have been inspirational for me in wanting to get past my sewing machine issues. If I had time, or even a free weekend (oh wait I just had one, why didn't I learn then?) I'd love to sit down with my mother's sewing machine and figure it out.

I've got a project, from three+ years ago, that I'd like to finish on a sewing machine. Its a t-shirt quilt from a bunch of t-shirts I had when I was in high school. Its super easy, and almost half way done. But I was at a point where doing it by hand was too intense and my lines weren't straight so I put it on hold until I learned to use a sewing machine.

If I learned to use a sewing machine, and when I finished the t-shirt quilt, I would want to try one of these patterns from Sis Boom. The stuff in their shop is super cute but I love the simple summery patterns they have. I love them for the little girls, but I also love them for me! They seem simple enough so that once I mastered straight lines on my quilt project I could handle making a dress like this one.

Have you ever tried to sew anything? How did it go?