Whirlwind

You guys? I’m tired.

I have a good excuse though.

Friday, after getting my hair colored (adios grays!), I took Mr. Darcy out for dinner (his favorite, pizza) and then I made him drive because I’d had two vodka tonics (safety first!). On the way to our friend’s engagement party a familiar song came on the radio, one that I dance to in Nia class, and so I gave Mr. Darcy a car dance to which he claimed I was being “distracting”. My sweet moves distract all the boys while they drive (sang like that milkshake song). (Maybe I should film it for your entertainment? . . . Maybe not.) We arrived at the party a little bit late and wouldn’t you know it? A train was blocking our path from where we parked to the bar. So I said enthusiastically, “Let’s jump it!” Please keep in mind that the train was stopped. Go ahead and think us foolish if you must. Mr. Darcy went along with it and we grabbed the rails and hauled ourselves over. I was laughing the whole time and as I went to take my last step off the ladder, the train started moving. Phew! We just made it.

I hosted my book group on Saturday and got it into my head I would make two new dishes. This might have been do-able and not stress-inducing if I had not also been cleaning my house in preparation for their arrival AND my friend RaeRae was landing that very morning for a 3 day stay. Everything turned out delicious- my first-ever flourless chocolate cake (easy & scrumptious) and a yummy kale, artichoke, ricotta “pie” plus my newest obsession, roasted broccoli. I was happy to have my book group friends meet one of my best friends. Then it was pedicures with my mom and sister in early celebration of Mother’s Day and a visit to a local wine bar. Since we’d already started drinking wine earlier in the evening, RaeRae & I decided to just keep going and, oops!, by the end of the evening we’d polished off 2 bottles. (No wonder I am still so dehydrated.)

RaeRae & my Mom outside Bottlehouse, taking time to smell the flowers.

Sunday brought the sun so we took to the streets for a thrift store shopping spree where in we both scored some majorly cute stuff. I forced RaeRae to try on clothes she would not normally pick out- a top with some stripe action and a dress that wasn’t completely black and to the her ankles- and I think she saw the positives of A) trying on clothes to see how they FIT and B) going outside your comfort zone. It was the first weekend of the farmer’s market and my absolute favorite vendor was back- Patty Pan! They make the most delicious quesadilla’s with tons of veggies.

NOM! NOM! NOM!

Then we took off for Willow’s Lodge for a night of just us girls. We splurged a bit but it was worth it. We wanted to have girl time to unwind but not have to drive forever to feel like we were having a getaway. Willow’s Lodge is in the epicenter of a lot of local wineries and next door to Redhook Brewery. Any hotel that greets us with a glass of wine wins me over. Though, after all our wine drinking the night before we skipped wine tasting and stuck with other libations like a filthy Martini (her) and a White Russian (me). The White Russian was a post-dinner drink and it inspired me to don the cushy robe that came with the room and get all Lebowski.

Why are robes so unsexy? It's like a throw blanket meets a mumu.

The room was decadent with a deep, big tub that we both took turns soaking in and comfy beds and a fireplace. After dinner and tub soaking and cocktails, we zoned in front of the flat screen tv and by zoned I mean I fell asleep and left RaeRae alone to watch The Judds reality tv show. In the morning she proclaimed she was traumatized by it because their story is so damn sad and that Naomi is a piece of work. We went full on splurge and ordered room service which RaeRae had to handle because the ear plugs I was wearing were so powerful I slept through both my alarm and the knocking on the door. We milked every minute of that hotel room and left just before the check out time. Ahhh, girls getaways are so good.

I tried to take this at least 10 times. RaeRae is beautifully tall and I am pleasingly short which makes taking self-portraits together challenging.

We got home in time to pick up Mr. Darcy and join Kaply for a leisurely lunch at Poquitos, a new joint in our neighborhood that I will definitely be returning to. Then it was off to the airport for my dear friend and off to therapy for me. I came home after my appointment totally and completely frazzled and exhausted. I managed to eat cereal for dinner and watch “The Killing” and then fall asleep before 10pm. I loved spending quality time with one of my dearest friends. It does my heart good to be around her- someone that makes me laugh and gets me and vice-versa.

I think you will agree, we really sucked the marrow out of the weekend!

Sun Soaked

The sun is shining in Seattle which means we’re all rejoicing in our own sun-worshiping ways.

Some take to wearing very little clothing even though it’s only 73 degrees. A bit extreme if you ask me.  Though I’ve come to realize that I do not own any sandals or flip flops except for the ones I got after getting a pedicure which really do not count. Some others (like myself) take a few minutes extra at lunch to soak up the rays. And then there are the people who get carried away tossing back a few brews in the afternoon sun. Like the two yesterday who stood outside my apartment building talking very loudly and very closely into each other’s faces. The female of the pair spoke to me as I carried a stack of window screens up the stairs to the front door:

“SCREENS! That’s smart. Those are new and CLEAN.”

She would emphasize certain words and her voice would rise a couple octaves. I ignored her. She spoke to her cohort:

“She’s SMART. Screens are DIRTY. Those NEW screens are hypoallergenic.”

I was surprised she could say hypoallergenic. Granted, she did slur it a bit.

Later they stood in the middle of the street and she repeatedly got in his face saying, “I need a CIGARETTE!” After a few rounds of that, they shuffled off randomly saying inexplicable things to strangers. The show was over and I was forced to resume cleaning my apartment.

All my tidying was in anticipation of my Jenny Two Times coming for a weekend visit. Hooray! We’ve got some loose plans. Probably some wine drinking, some sun enjoying, some thrifting, some live music listening and some brunching. Ok, fine. I have an itinerary. I HAVE A SICKNESS.

I told Mr. Darcy that I wasn’t going to schedule any big plans for June and he quipped something like, “Planned spontaneity. That’s awesome.”

Happy weekending everybody!

P.S. My mole results came back. All clear! Nothing to worry about.

The Things We Did

We got soaked in a downpour after I broke the umbrella upon opening it. We literally walked four blocks to the bank and were all dripping wet. I took one look at them, miserable, and gave up the idea of walking to the bar. Instead, the always chivalrous Mr. Darcy drove, paying $12.50 for parking.

We drank.

We stayed up late talking.

We went on a chocolate tour. I ate too much (meaning: any) chocolate and felt crabbtastic and run down. EVIL SUGAR. But Finn sure looks cute in a hair net.

His favorite is the milk chocolate.

We had a two hour lunch with the family wherein I was required by my nephew to feed him french fries as he laid down in our booth. Such service!

We got lost looking for an antique store and almost ran out of gas.

Jackpot, Baby

We played Cranium with friends. It’s hard to draw with your eyes closed! Stupid sensosketch.

Draw something resembling anything.

We drank some more.

We stayed up very late.

We slept in. (Woo hoo! 9am!)

We had brunch with the family. Two words: French. Toast.

We walked around Lincoln Park.

Awww, Rooooomance.

There were many squirrels, some of whom would run right up to you. This one I thought might jump on my face. Sincerely.

SQUIRREL!

Exhausted from our non-stop party lifestyle, we crashed on my Mom’s couches watching the Olympics until it was time to go to the airport.

Excuse our tired eyes. We need more sleep.

I miss them.

Weekend Elation

Two of my most important people arrive in Seattle today for a weekend visit.

Natalie Wood & James Dean

I can’t accurately express my excitement at seeing them. It’s been almost a year! For those of you new to the blog, JD is my very dear old friend, former roommate, “papa” to our beloved Angelou, and one of the best boyfriends I ever had (back when I was 22-24 years old) and NW is one of the sweetest, most loveliest ladies I’ve ever had the pleasure to call friend. I introduced them many years ago and now they are married. They are a part of my family so it goes without saying that my Mom, Dokey, Double B and Finn are all super excited that they are visiting. Plus, I get to introduce them to Mr. Darcy.

Have a terrific weekend! I know I will.

Scenes From a Weekend

Bird & Rae Rae were here for the weekend. (HURRAY!)

gussied

When the three of us get together there is no shortage of conversation. Bird and Rae Rae, who met in graduate school, often lose themselves in conversations that have to do with race, class and gender intersection/dissection/some sort of section. They use big words and sound very smart (because they are). Meanwhile, I’m singing along to the radio or lost in a day dream. (Maybe it’s a good thing I never went to grad school?)

Unfortunately for them, I had raging PMS so there were a few moments where I. . . how do I say it? Lost my effen shit. Like when we were waiting on the street corner for a cab (a CAB not a john) already late to our dinner reservation and I realized that I left the theater tickets in the apartment. GAH! As we hurried back I think I said something like, “I don’t even want to go anymore.” I am such an asshole sometimes. Luckily, we’ve been friends for so long we know how to manage each other’s episodes. Exhibit A:

Me: I feel better.

Bird: Good. Because before you were being a fucking snatch.

Ah, I love my friends.

Other highlights include: getting beat up during an awesome $29 massage (my shoulder blades still hurt), sharing our life lists over dinner, laughing our asses off at a vibrator tutorial video, toe-deep in toilet water while actively plunging an over-used toilet with Rae Rae while Bird slept through the entire disaster (convenient!), sleeping next to Bird who wraps her head in a black garment as to block out the light but to me looks like a prisoner of war (at least it keeps Dash from eating her hair while she slumbers), laughing and more laughing.

The apartment is too quiet without them.

P.S. I will be co-hosting The Baub Show with Tomato tonight, 7pm PST.

Dumpling & Jersey Girl Head North

Just when you think everyone I ever met has visited me, I prove you wrong with two more friends arriving tomorrow. Dumpling and his main squeeze, Jersey Girl, will be arriving fresh from hours upon hours of driving north. Dumpling has only been to Seattle once before when he helped me move here. Jersey has never been here before. Those facts coupled with their love of all things cheesy sets the stage for a tourist trap weekend of fun-o-la.jersey and dumpling at the bonfire

When I asked them what kinds of things they’d like to do, Dumpling listed off such attractions as the Space Needle, the SciFi Museum, Pike Place Market and the Underground Tour. He also emphatically announced we would be dining at Voula’s Offshore Cafe. I had never heard of this dining establishment before but apparently it is a mere 10 minutes from my apartment. Why Voula’s? Dumpling claims she hugs all her patrons, or so he witnessed while watching “Diners, Drive ins and Dives” on the Food Network. I told him he watches too much tv but regardless, I’d be down to hug an old Greek lady and eat some feta scramble. Count me in!

snuggling the dumplingSome of you may recall that Dumpling is an ex of mine and that for some time prior to my move here we were. . . how should I put it?. . ..inseparable. Leaving The Cruz was hard enough but leaving Dumpling, my Harry, my Duckie, my Friday-night-sushi dinner-What-Not- To-Wear-date, my go to guy, my bring-me-flowers-to-work-for-no- reason fella was excruciating. It took us some time to adjust to being without each other and many tears were shed. A year later, I am happy to say we have evolved our friendship and the adoration and camaraderie are still there just separated by many miles. And no, for those of you holding out hope we were going to end up hitched and making babies, that won’t be happening. He is one of my very bestest friends and for that I will be eternally grateful. Any woman who marries him would be lucky. He’s a total catch! He has found a wonderful woman that he is in love with which makes me truly happy. I kind of have a bit of a crush on his girlfriend actually. Jersey’s a sass and a half. We’re like peas and carrots. It thrills me to no end that Dumpling has found a woman worthy of him and, as a true ego-maniac, it tickles me that she and I get along so fabulously. It’s all so very. . . mature, wouldn’t you say?

“I don’t get many things right the first time/In fact, I am told that a lot/Now I know all the wrong turns, the stumbles and falls/Brought me here/And where was I before the day/That I first saw your lovely face?/Now I see it everyday/And I know/That I am/I am/I am/The luckiest. . .” -The Luckiest, Ben Folds

Off the Charts

How much fun can one person handle? I keep testing my limits and you know what? I can handle a LOT, like buckets and buckets of it, as evidenced by this past weekend.

supple and sizzle at the whiskyFriday: Meeting up with the Mad Irishman, eating some tacos, throwing back one too many Jack & Cokes, a shot or two, and a PBR somewhere in there. Laughter. Drunken photo shoots. Going MIA for God knows how long when I was supposedly just visiting the loposing tougho. (You know how when you get drunk you can wander off and time has absolutely no relevance? So you can think you were gone for 10 minutes but really everyone has been looking for you for at least an hour? Mmmm, yeah. It was like that.) Debauchery was reached, let’s just say.

Sme, j and faithy waiting for crowded house to startaturday: Getting four hours of sleep only to run on pure adrenaline and elation because ohmygod I was going to see Crowded House. Standing in lines and then some more lines to get a prime spot for the show. Seeing all my friends get along, many of them meeting for the first time. Basking in the brilliant sun on a gorgeous day. eddie vedder and neil finnSinging every song with Putzy (the first time I ever hung out with him we drove around in his car singing to CH songs). I never stopped smiling the entire show. And Eddie Vedder came out and sang with them! The day continued with more walking, more music, crowd battling- a long, full day that went from 9:30am to 9:30pm. Yeah, we were tired.

troll poseSunday: Making breakfast leisurely with Supple and Marnacakes. Talking. Sharing. Reminiscing. Catching up. Having Hillz join us for the day to visit the Fremont Fair, then the Sculpture Park, diniat the elysianng at the Elysian Brewery and topping off the day with a successful thrift store visit. . . we managed to pack a lot into two and a half days. There was so much sun and drinking and smiling and good feeling.

I know I must say this often but seriously, I love my life. Just when I think it can’t get better, it does. But I need to go back to bed because having this much fun is exhausting!

“Still so young to travel so far/Old enough to know who you are/Wise enough to carry the scars/Without any blame, theres no one to blame/Easy to forget what you learn/Waiting for the thrill to return/Feeling your desire burn/As you’re drawn to the flame/When your seven worlds collide/Whenever I am by your side/And dust from a distant sun/Will shower over everyone…” -Distant Sun, Crowded House

Recipe for F-U-N

Not only is it Friday (weeee!) and the beginning of a three-day weekend (double weee!) but todathe mad irishman is a bad influencey my friends Marnacakes and Supple arrive in the Emerald City for some seriously good times (triple weeee!). We’ve got an evening of debauchery scheduled with The Mad Irishman. Remember this truth: whenever I hang out with him I ingest too much booze, too little food and empty my pocketbook. He was griping that I don’t introduce him to my pals so. . . here goes nothing. Let’s hope they are able to leave Washington state with some of their moral fiber and good sense still intact.

I’m betting thtrouble comes in threesat Marnacakes’ innate sweetness (hence her nickname) will have a calming effect on me, Mad and Supple. Because truth be told, Supple is one wild lady when she wants to be. I’m hoping she doesn’t start any barroom brawls. And Mad? Well, there’s a reason I call him The Mad Irishman. (Note: He’s not angry.) The whole lot of them can leave the shameless flirting to me. I’m fine tuning my technique anyhow. I need the practice.

It’s gonna be one helluva weekend. That’s my prediction anyhow. Hope you all enjoy yours. No laboring! (Lifting the beer to your mouth does not count as labor in my book.)

“If I could change one thing in this world/I’d change your mind and make you my girl/Because I’m lost and I need to be found/Crazy as it sounds/I need you around/I’m gonna feel this way till I’m six feet underground/Crazy as it sounds/I need you around…” -Need You Around, Smoking Popes

Bird Flies the Coop

Bird flew home this morning. Boo hoo! I love having her here. Why can’t all my best pals move here? While I work out that plan, I’ll just have to keep making sure that they have a stellar visit each time they come up and slowly but surely brainwash them into believing that Seattle is THE place for them. I mean really, this place IS that cool and um hello, I live here. Total bonus!

kayakingplaying scrabbleWe packed a lot into 48 hours. Swimming and The Kingfish Cafe and kayaking and Agua Verde. Remedy Teas and Scrabble. (Bird had never played the game. WTH!? That had to be remedied. Har har. Get it? We were at Remedy Tea? Oh shuddup. I know it was bad.) Bird, the overachiever that she is, took in a yoga class while I tried to catch up on blog reading (geez you guys are prolific!). Dinner at the super yummy Panos Kleftiko (mmm feta) and then a disappointing trip to Chopstix Piano Bar. Maybe it was the Tuesday night crowd but it was pretty lame. I mean, Guitar Hero in between sets? Gah! But Bird did get up and sing Summertime. She’s such a rock star.chopstix

My favorite Bird-ism of the trip: “It’s like I’m a detective of my own mind.”

I miss you already. Squawk!

“Stars shining bright above you/Night breezes seem to whisper “I love you”/Birds singin’ in the sycamore trees/Dream a little dream of me/Say nighty-night and kiss me/Just hold me tight and tell me you’ll miss me/While I’m alone and blue as can be/Dream a little dream of me. . .” -Dream a Little Dream

As You Can See. . .

bird and cakeme and cakeWe are having a grand time! Do you SEE the size of that strawberry shortcake?! For the record, we are each holding the same cake and even sharing it we only got through half of it. I crashed shortly after from a sugar buzz but it was worth it. Not pictured is us going swimming at the local pool. You see, we worked up an appetite for that dessert. We both agree that sharing a lane in the pool when doing laps blows. My over-pleasing nature gets all anxious that I am not going fast enough for the other swimmers in my lane. Plus, I forgot my goggles so I was bleary eyed at the end of it all. But it felt amazing! Swimming rules. Today we are off to kayak and then adventure around town. You so wish you were us, don’t you? Just for today?

“Nobody lives without love/Nobody gets to give up/You can try to lock your heart away/But love will come back for you some day/Nobody Lives Without Love./Thought I could live my life as a stranger/Hide from the heartbreak that love always brings/Make it to the higher ground/and try to turn the volume down/Couldn’t stop the sirens from singing/Sing for me, baby.” -Nobody Lives Without Love, Eddi Reader