31 July 2008

{patriotic inspiration}

Forwards. Hmm. I definitely don't "love" them. I'm not trying to say this, so that all of you that do send me forwards will stop. No. I'm just saying this because it's true. It's a fact and instead of always handing everyone ice cream cones* I think it better to say it as it is. But, yes, back to forwards. Sometimes - there actually can be inspirational things that are revealed through the mass of dancing animals, purring cats, lengthy poems, and do this or don't be blessed hysteria.** Sometimes, forwards can inspire. And so, though I'm a loather of fowards, I am about to join the game and pass something on.***I don't know if was just me and my husband, but look again at that flag! It looked real to me at first - not just painted! The detailing is incredible.
You may have seen this before. I think I got an email with this about 5 or 6 years ago...but, after seeing it again in a forward tonight (that my husband was showing me), I thought it was worth mentioning again. The artist :: Ray "Bubba" Sorensen is from Iowa. This rock stood as an entrance to a rock querry. It was a local fave spot for graffiti; however after Bubba saw Saving Private Ryan in 1999, he thought of making a tribute to our troops. He started with a flag and added pieces on every Memorial Day that followed (essentially changing the majority of the look). The pictures above are what the rock looked like in 2003. To see the different transformations from 1999 - 2008 you would be amazed! It seems like every year he changes the rock quick drastically. You can see an annual photo journal here!
As an effort to shorten this as much as possible and not be to sappy, I say only this :: It's nice to see someone creating something honoring to our country. I know this was painting was started a while back, but in the hype of "anti-everything" right now, it's nice to see this rock honor this great nation (and the men & women that vow to honor it daily), instead of having it filled with dissappointed graffiti, showing complete distain for our gov't.
Serious post today. Settle down.
*ice cream cone :: idea -- handing someone a "verbal" ice cream cone, is to fill their head/ego with either falsehoods; likely things they just want to hear. This can even pertain to compliments. (It may be widely used, but I'm just not, I'm filling you in.)
**DON'T be offended. Get over it. Most forwards are filled with dancing animals, singing plants, purring cats, do this or die, do this or don't be blessed messages. It's just the honest truth. So, let's not pretend here folks.
***Notice my words changed from not "loving" to loathing by the end of the first paragraph. Annoyance was building. However, don't worry - I do read some of the forwards sent to me. I don't freak out at them. I promise (and no, I'm not handing you an ice cream cone).

30 July 2008

{ballet beauty}

When I was a little girl I dreamed of being a ballerina. That dream never came true, as I was never put in ballet class. ::Don't worry parents, I'm not about to go into my "shpeal" again:: But, yes - no ballet. I got stuck in gymnastics. (Not complaining about gymnastics :: it's a great program :: it just wasn't as elegent as ballet and you didn't get to wear the pretty skirts!) Thankfully my sisters were put in at a young age and have 10 years of lovely twirls.

I always knew though that one day I wanted to incorporate some of that ballet beauty into my wedding...and so I did. Just look at my precious flower girls! Oh the little skirts...(it was the best when they turned around, with their little bums. Too cute.) As far as me, I wore ballet shoes (as you can see from the top picture on this blog).

I bring all of this up because I was looking through Etsy and happened upon these lovely skirts! Handmade - and sewn (not tied). It's just lovely. You can check out some of her shoppe here.

::I praaaaaayyyy that one day my little girl wants to get all dressed up in these beautiful skirts::

{inherited vintage}

These are my most favorite pictures in our home. (And, I wish my photos of them weren't so blurry! Goodness.) These pictures are the perfect amount of vintage for me. They were passed down to me from my dear Mémé* (and to her from my aunt Oma**). Oh how I love these!!!!!!
The two little ones are in a set. Though not much is known about them, they are stamped with the date of May 1933. The larger one has no traces that lead me to any knowledge of the picture; however, I can only assume it is from a similar time period as these three have always been grouped together (primarily by my Mémé). Either way, I love these and treasure them.
*Mémé is the french word from grandma (an informal version).
**Oma. My aunt Oma. I'm pretty much obsessed with her. She collected the most unique pieces in her home. I wish I could have met her!

29 July 2008

{tuesday's top!}

This week's "old favorite movie" award goes to FOOTLOOSE.This 1984 film got people dancing...or wishing they could dance at least. I loved this movie growing up. I was not even in school when it was released, but I saw lots of this movie as I got older. Though I'm not the biggest fan of Kevin Bacon (I know, I know. Settle down), I thought he was brillant in this movie! The music is classic too.
interesting facts:
*This movie was loosely based on a small farming town in Oklahoma (Elmore City) where dancing had been banned for almost 90 years! It wasn't until a group of high school teens challenged it in 1978, that things changed.
*Dianne Wiest who plays Ariel's mom, Vi, is only 9 years older than Lori Singer (Ariel).
little errors:
There were many little errors in the film (like in most), but these are a few I thought I would highlight:

*Audio/visual unsynchronized: When Ren and Willard are driving away from the gas station (before they're pulled over by the police), you can see one of their heads in the rear view mirror. They're having a conversation, but their lips never move.
*Continuity: When they play "chicken" with the tractors, the red tractor rolls to its left, away from the canal. The next shot shows the tractor upside down and by the canal.
*Continuity: When Ren is dancing in the factory and is swinging on the high bar-type pole, he is wearing gloves. During the rest of the sequence he is bare-handed.
*Audio/visual unsynchronized: Directly after Vi, Ariel's mother, says "Elenore, sit down!" in the city counsel scene, the camera turns to Ariel. Next to Ariel, a student is clapping his hands, but all sound has been dubbed out the shot.
*Continuity: When Ren and Ariel kiss for the first time, their arms switch positions numerous times between shots.
*Errors in geography: The film takes place in the Midwest, but there's a scene with Ren and Ariel outside where snow-capped mountains are visible in the background, betraying the fact that it was filmed in Utah.
*Continuity: The style of Ariel's prom dress changes from one scene to another. She is wearing the same dress while in her room getting ready, and at the prom. That dress has a simple ruffle all the way around the bottom. The dress she is wearing when Ren helps her into his car is different. That dress is bustled in the back and has a different ribbon around the waist.
*Continuity: During the prom, Willard's hair changes style and color three times.

(all data was found at IMDB)

Movie dedicated to Joe Neuwelt: When we were growing up thank you for letting us pass daily through your backyard to reach our mail box, located next to yours, on a mail route that was not conistant with the street name, nor in any relation to the proximity of our home. Thank you for installing a door in your fence for this said task. Thank you for never wavering in your smile and always saying, "hey Naphie" (shout out to BEESE for the "ie"). Thank you Joe.

28 July 2008

{boston red sox v. seattle mariners}

This was a significant game! It was not only the first game the Maurice's and Murphy's frequented together, or our second time to a pro-ball game, but it was the first time Anthony got to see HIS team play live. The Boston Red Sox. He's been an avid fan for years, and see them live was truly a dream come true.

The Murphy's at Safeco Field: Terrace Club:
scott Maurice and my Mister having the best time joking, laughing, eating!: Military Honor night. Army band from Fort Lewis:
Chinooks flew over Safeco in honor of our troops (& my husband of course!):
Willow Maurice. She pretty much gave me a crash course on b-ball basics! merci.:
It was such a fun night! Next stop with the Maurices....Sushi!
*and YES! The Boston Red Sox won! Whoo-hoo!!!

25 July 2008

{happy weekend!}

Have a WONDERFUL weekend!  I'll be spending some of my time at Pike's Place.  

{i have decided}

It's a stupid rule. Or at least not well thought out. What am I talking about? No talking on your hand held device while driving. Don't get me wrong. I understand where the "idea" of this rule is coming from, but come on. First of all, let's get to the point of what's happening. I'm driving to work today...and I look over and I see someone texting while driving, and then another person following suit, and another, and yes - ANOTHER. During my 26 minute drive I counted 7 people texting while driving (and a few just openly talking on their phone).

(Side note: The issue of texting may technically fall under the rule of no hand-held devices while driving. The rule may actually specify, but it is quite easy to conceal, if one wants. Therefore, what follows in confrontation is: a "he said, she said" game.)

Now, in all honesty, I am not without fault. Yes, yes I've texted while driving (move on). But, I don't recommend it.* I try to be a careful driver. And, now that there's this rule: the number of people texting while driving has gone up by 23%.** That's a scary number! If we've seen that great of an increase in just the first 3 weeks of this rule being implemented, what are we to expect by year end? Exactly! And so I don't think I'll be texting anymore. How can I? No one's driving defensively anymore, cause they're all texting. What's worse - talking or texting? Hmm.

That all said, I don't have a problem with talking on the phone while driving (and, yes, I am aware that bluetooth and other such hands-free devices solve this whole problem). BUT if we really followed this rule to the "T", then why not regulate smoking, eating, make-up applying, cd switching (if you don't have your ipod), car cleaning, email checking, rubber-necking, back seat disciplining, really really funny conversations, screaming fights, reading*** and lip gloss applying.****

*Texting can be fine if you are highly trained, quick and the only person doing it, while driving on a back road. Or perhaps in an emergancy because talking on the phone is illegal.

**This number has no standard measurement, as no official poll has been conducted. This number used was solely based on my preference of typing whatever I desired.

***Reading the newspaper on the morning commute is pretty trendy. It shows one's high level of multi-tasking, professional example of paper folding - as to be able to take in the maximum amout of text, while still having a view (clear or obstructed) of the what's ahead . This is primarily done while at stop lights, and should never be attempted while actually in downtown traffic.

****Even though a fresh coat of make-up was just applied, lip gloss applying is an all day activity.

22 July 2008

{tuesday's top!}

{this week's 'old' movie favorite...}


Need I say more? After our fun weekend at the Air Expo, who couldn't resist watching Top Gun. Sunday night seemed a perfect time. Even the opening music thrust me back into a complete state of rememberance of just how wonderful this film is. A true classic.

This wins my "old favorite movie of the week" award. (My last award went to Wild Hearts Can't Be Broken).

"Talk to me Goose."

21 July 2008

{mmm good!}

Fresh Scallops anyone?  I went to one market.  Out.  I went to a second market. Out.  Finally, I went to a third - and I got the last bit!  Were they just that popular this weekend? I've actually never made scallops before; however, this week, I got a craving.  In the past I've tasted some pretty "fishy" versions, but these were wonderful.  (Of course you have to like seafood, to enjoy this dish).  They were easy to make too!

*I put salt and pepper on all, and then dredged them in flour (gluten and wheat free flour, that is). Browned them on both sides in unsalted butter, then added a bit more butter and finely chopped shallots, garlic and parsley.  After another 2 minutes I added a bit of dry white wine and let it cook off, making a delightful sauce (thanks to the bit of flour that was on the scallops).   Totally good and not "fishy" at all!

I paired it with some rice (with added scallions, parsley and dill), and a fresh raspberry salad.  The meal was light and fun.  In the future I'd pair it with some red potatoes though and skip the rice.  If you're looking for a different flavor for dinner - this just might hit the spot!

Happy Monday to you all!!!!

20 July 2008

{air expo 2008}

Ever since knowing Anthony, and especially after being married, I can say that there are two genuin things that make him giddy. Yes, giddy. His eyes light up, his grin gets bigger and his mind races with little facts. These two things you ask? Planes and Animals (the wilder the better; however, his love for the natural instict of domesticated dogs and cats is astounding. - especially, since i don't share that same passion).
It just so happened that the Thunderbirds came to McChord Airforce Base this weekend. How fun! (but, what a day...)
The day started with an opening "jump" (I don't know any official terms or names of aircrafts, so you'll just have to search that out on your own, if you want! Or perhaps ask my husband.) It was cloudy in the morning as you see. We then saw various aircrafts, walked a bunch, and waited for the Thunderbirds.

(notice this Flag? the national anthem was being sung during this portion of the show. i had goose bumps!)

(hello! the sun is starting to shine a bit!)
(big plane. big gun.)
(this little blue one was my favorite. )
(oh, this one was pretty cool too.)
(my husband is QUITE familiar with this one...he's had to jump out of it before. scary indeed.)
(you would think that the inside would be a bit nicer...hmm.)

(and the army station. this car is crazy, and to think my husband had to drive it in downtown seattle. what a statement!)(hello mister!)
Actually, I don't have many photos, cause it was just too amazing to stop and take eyes were devoted to the skies. It was great though!!! And look at the clear blue skies - it was perfect.
As for the rest of the day. Hmm. All I can say is thank God we had kettle corn:

Why? Well, as we were leaving the parking lot, we all got stuck. No, not for a 1/2 hour due to the 150-200 thousand people trying to leave as well, or the complete lack of planning a smooth exit from McChord. Apparently a woman went into labor! We were in our car, in line and waiting. After a while the ambulence left...and we were still waiting? How long? 2 hours and 5 minutes. No one could move. Just waiting. People were so mad. Did they lock us all in? What were they doing? Finally, gates opened on all sides, and traffic slowly made it's way....BUT, then we get to I-5 and dead locked again (yes, an accident). So...we took a sharp right, cut perpendicularly across the stopped freeway (all the while smirking at the shocked faces of people looking at our bold move), and exited. Might as well just eat! ...the kettle corn was running low and not doing the trick. After a relaxing meal we hit the road again and made it home by 9ish.

What an adventure we had!

18 July 2008

{a new fave side}

Quinoa - pronounced keen-wah, is an important staple in South American cuisine.  It was in fact, a staple of ancient Incas who referred to it as "the mother grain".  And I want to say, ' It is "the MOTHER grain" indeed!'  This stuff is so good.  It's flavor is extremely delicate, so it's a great alternative as a side dish.  I added chicken broth, basil, scallions, fresh tomatoes, and some fresh lemon juice.  For a first time try, it was definitely a success (and that's coming from the husband!).  It's so delicate that I'm going to try it in place of Cream of Wheat (a personal fave of mine and my husband's).  Yes folks, this is wheat and gluten free!  So, it could do just the trick for a cold morning craving of a hot steamy bowl of goodness.  (Topped with brown sugar, rice milk and maybe a bit of butter and cinnamon.)

INTERESTING TAD BIT for the knowing....This yummy stuff isn't really "grain". In fact, it's really a fruit!  And a shout out to Willow (as she loves all things health...don't be fooled by her last post on cookies): this grain-fruit is described (by the National Academy of Science) as "the most nearly perfect source of protein from the vegetable kingdom."  It's loaded wth lysine and other amino acids making it a complete protein.  AND, it's high in fiber, calium, iron, vitamin E, B vitamins and phosphorus.  So, if you're looking for a healthy yet delicious alternative - this should be on your list!

So, when in doubt for your next side, try quinoa (if you haven't already).  You won't be dissapointed!  

HAPPY FRIDAY!  See you monday!

15 July 2008

{busy week!}

Hi!! I'll be posting sporatically this week...but please know that it's a busy week! My job is going well. I had my first day today and it was great. Anthony and I are getting ready for this upcoming weekend, where we hope to go to an air show near Fort Lewis and then the BOSTON RED SOX are in town! Whoo-hoo. (Well, basically that's Anthony who's cheering...). We also have dear friends coming into town and even my brother and his girlfriend will be coming by for a game. SO...busy set up, but I'll keep you all posted here and there!
On a personal note, my dear husband is learning to adjust to his new gluten free/wheat free life. For those of you who did not see my recent post on Belle.Chic.Cuisine, we found out Friday that he's intollerant to gluten and allergic to wheat and dairy. So, this past weekend was primarily spent changing out our cupboards, etc. Bless his heart. He's already feeling the benefit of the change though! I'm learning a lot. Thankfully, my mother in law is a great resource for this info too! Plus, like a friend mentioned, it's not 1991 - and there are definitely great resources out there for gluten free/wheat free products that don't taste like cardboard! Just check out these delicious GF brownies below!

{going FREE}

Gluten Free - Wheat Free brownies! Why gluten free and wheat free do you ask?   Well, my husband just got blood work back, and he's completely gluten intolerant and highly allergic to wheat (and cow's milk, peanuts, bananas....)  I know.  *sigh*  We found out on Friday, and so we spent the entire weekend changing our cupboards and fridge.  What a task.  I used to think about going GF (gluten free)...not for me mind you...just what it would be like.  Anyway, I used wonder what it would truly be like.  It wouldn't be right for me though.  Nope.  I love cooking, baking, and well eating all too much!  (And yes, apples, mixed fruit and raw veggies are my fave, but who thinks about totally cutting everything bread?  aaaahhhh.)  Anyway, movitvation comes quickly when it's a necessity!  I've done so much research this weekend and I'm quickly learning....and adapting.  Our cupboards are "healthy".  lol.  And look at the above creation!!!  (GF/Wheat Free BROWNIES)  They were perfectly moist and rich with chocolate.   This "food"/kitchen blog may change a, I'll be focused on all things free of gluten, wheat, dairy...etc.  But, I think it'll be a good source for sharing some fun new foods.   (And no worries friends...we found some ok bread that'll work until I make my own.)  Happy Tuesday!  (I start my new job today.  *sigh*)

14 July 2008

{did i mention...?}

I got a job! On Friday I went in for a second meeting (following my interview on Wednesday), and they extended a job offer. I took it and start tomorrow! Things move fast. That's good though. I feel so good about the job! I know that I'll be stretched, learn a lot, but also be able to bring a lot to the company as well. Whoo-hoo!

{Bastille Day!}

Happy 'quatorze juillet' (July 14th)! Today is France's National Holiday....much like our 4th of July. As I mentioned in my other blog the details of French history are long, and though I love it all, I don't presume you do as, if you would like more info, click here!

11 July 2008

{have an inspired weekend}

Get out your favorite recipe and make it beautiful this weekend! Happy weekend friends!

{update: job interview}

I've had many faithful emails, comments and texts regarding how the interview went! Well, I'm here to give you an update. It went well! I was overwhelmingly surprised by the company and the CFO that I'd be working directly under. I have no experience in finance, but that didn't seem to deter them, as I was asked to return today to "take it to the next level". No job offer as of yet, but I'm confident that one is in the making! And...I think I'll take it. The opportunity is amazing and I have so much peace about it.
It was overwhelming though! I've had much experience working in a fast paced, but small environment. When pulling up to the building, it had it's own parking garage, 24 hour security and over 600 employees. Not as big as some buildings, but stretching indeed!

So...on to the "next level" in just a bit. I'll keep ya'll posted. (Hey, I said "ya'll" in my head...and I write as I think. No editing here!)
Happy Friday friends!

{movie craving}

I had the biggest "movie craving" last night. This happens to me often. I see an image, hear a phrase, remember a song...and it throws me back to a movie, and I develop a "movie craving". Willow Maurice told me, "you know how people get food cravings...well i decided that you get movie [cravings]." She's right. It's true. And, last night was no exception.
My problem, is that I sometimes have a hard time "pin-pointing" what the exact movie might be. I'm terrible with names (actors' names specifically) and the same sometimes goes for movie titles. I can remember an outfit, the "tone" of a sentence, word for word dialogue even...but the name of the movie? Not so much. This applies to song titles as well. I'm useless (and therefore, take no offense at not being chosen for "name that games"). I get it. I'm great for detail, but the obvious things often slip my mind.

So, I got a craving, but just remembered the details of the movie. I texted several friends (one at a mass text from me peeps...settle down). I would wait for a response and text another, hoping that someone had the answer. I was flooded with texts saying: WILD HEARTS CAN'T BE BROKEN (by my dear friends Erin, Kirsten, Krystal and Willow - note the alphebetical order). THANK YOU, thank you friends. I am in the oddest mood to watch that!
Do you get movie cravings often? I am constantly in the mood for movies and that probably steams from a family that loves film!

If you haven't seen this, then you should! Be warned though that tears will flow, but it's redeeming. It's one of my childhood faves as it was released in 1991. Bethany Storro and I used to love it! (I was informed it's one of her faves too!!) Good film. Good memories.

10 July 2008

{tour de france}

Though I don't follow pro-cycling avidly, I do appreciate Le Tour de France. 1) It's in France --hello, need I say more?--, 2) when you actually start watching the race, it's quite intense, and 3) well, I don't have a 3, but there always seems to be a "3". Either way, I enjoy the Tour! I had the amazing opportunity of seeing them pass when I was there in 2003. It was incredible!! But now the thrill comes through the television.
I've been able to watch bits of every stage thus far (they're on stage 6 now). So, I thought since it's "apart of our life" currently - that I'd post some great pics I found!

The last pic was from last night (Stage 5). He really WAS that happy! Good for him! Oh, but the crashes that take place...crazy! Anthony and I just cringe.

Busy day! Hope you're is splendid!!

*click on photo to find source.

09 July 2008

{crepes for dessert}

"I have a sweet tooth." My husband said to me last night. "You do???" I replied. This is not a common phrase that comes out of his mouth. If anything, I'm craving the sweets and he's craving anything to do with a cow. Ok, so I'm exaggerating a bit. But, either way, that little phrase was delightful to my ears. THEN...he said, "You know what sounds good? Crepes." For those of you who know me, that made my heart pitter-patter. I love to bake. And I love all things French. But, since being married, how can I justify baking for someone who doesn't prefer sweets. It all just goes to waste...or I consume it. (Not what I prefer.) Hmm.

But, he said it! It came out of his mouth. Now, my "crepe experience" has revovled around a french kitchen. Keep it light. Sprinkle on vanilla sugar. If in the mood, lather on nutella. Yummy. As I was preparing mine, however, I was asked, "is that a crepe"? Or rather, "is that a french crepe?" "What do you mean?" I said. Apparently my husband can only remember "restaurant crepes"...."american restaurant crepes". Oh! I get it. Poor on the a pancake! He said, "you know, powdered sugar, whip cream, berries..." So, I made a berry sauce and made fresh whip cream (yes, I even got out the confectioner's sugar). This, this made him smile. Now, don't get me wrong, perhaps some French put on the works, but I personally haven't wittnesed crepes being "dressed" to the extreme of american pancakes. But it did look amazing (if you had a sweet tooth and all). my husbands dessert...

my dessert...

After tasting both, I was happy with my choice. The sweet yet slightly tangy fresh raspberries added the perfect compliment to the sweet crepe. (And yes...I had to pull out the dishes dedicated to France (stamped with a fleur de lis)! The perfect backdrop to this delightful french creation.)


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