Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Ingredients for the perfect Erin Evening

~ 1 trip to Target, including both planned and spontaneous purchases
~ 1 non-fat, spiced brown sugar latte to keep me warm while shopping
~ 2 long-awaited for new books from the Library
~ 1 sweat sesh at the gym
~ A batch of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies
~ 2 little phone calls with my Mom
~ Dinner of homemade quiche and crisp green beans
~ 10 lit candles, spread throughout the apartment
~ 1 small glass of eggnog to start off the holiday season
~ Lots of singing along with tonight's Glee (loved Dog Days Are Over!)
~ Several new quotes jotted in my notebook
~ 1 cup of vanilla tea

A dose of happiness here and there is necessary to every person's life.

Words to Live By

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Getting in touch with my inner Domestic Diva

This may not be a long post, but it's been such a lovely Sunday that I just had to drop in and say hi. Usually Sundays are kind of bittersweet because they signal the end of the weekend, but today has been really nice.

I lazed around this morning, watching Season 2 of F.R.I.E.N.D.S and drinking Dunkin' Donuts coffee that my Uncle brought all the way from Boston. My theory on this coffee is that it most likely tastes the same as the stuff I could buy here in the grocery store, but thanks to my overpowering psyche, drinking it whisks me away to chilly East Coast mornings; Dunkin' Donuts coffee warms my soul! Along with my coffee, I treated myself to cinnamon rolls and excessive time spent on my couch.

I finally dragged myself off to the shower, ran a few errands with my Mom, picked up some books (gifts) at Barnes & Noble and drank more coffee while Mom and I read all of the latest gossip on the Royal Wedding (I'm totally in love with Wills and Kate, by the way). This little outing was followed up by a nice, long, chilly walk through my neighborhood, and then I settled back in my apartment before the snow flurries came.

This is when I became a football-watching Domestic Diva. That's right, not only did I voluntarily watch the Broncos v. Rams game (we almost pulled off a win!), but I also voluntarily slaved away in my kitchen for a few hours. I had the urge to cook, so I made a huge pot of black bean and turkey kielbasa soup and threw together a quick mushroom, broccoli and bacon quiche. I seriously love quiche, and discovered that I have made this dish so many times that I no longer need to look at my recipe. This is major for me because I am one of those annoying, recipe-following, control freak kind of cooks. I've finally made my way to the top of the quiche world!!

And now my kitchen is clean, I'm FB messaging with my bestie who is currently having an amazing time in Sydney, I'm all comfy in sweats, watching "The Ugly Truth" (love me some Gerard Butler) and drinking a glass of Petit Syrah. Sigh of contentment.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Fill in the Blank Friday: I'm not trying to cop out of posting!

Let's point out the obvious shall we? I haven't posted since last Friday when I played along with Lauren's weekly Fill in the Blank Friday...and let's all guess what I'm posting today. Haha... This past week has been fun, busy and full of work and family, which is why I've been absent. My Uncle flew in from Boston on Saturday and we've been on the go ever since. He heads back East tomorrow and I promise to catch you all up on some of the things we did. Until then, how about some shopping-related blanks?

1. Black Friday is terrifying. I have never been a Black Friday shopper, and even though my inner bargain hunter loves the idea of joining the chaotic masses, my sanity and logic win out. I think I'll stick with being a day-after-Christmas shopper who goes out late on Black Friday and is still able to snag a few good deals.

2. Christmas shopping this year will include picking up whatever I didn't get the day after Christmas last year and throughout the year...I'm a constant shopper.

3. Holiday shopping makes me a little tense. I get tired of the crowds and my patience completely disappears.

4. This year my Christmas list will include new razor blades (is it weird that I get those in my stocking?), maybe a Barnes & Noble giftcard and a new camera. I know my Mom has already picked up a lot of things, and at one point in time I knew what some of them were, but the beauty of being Erin is that I forget most gifts until I open them Christmas morning.

5. Bargain hunter, or full price shopper? Definitely a bargain hunter. It's rare for me to pay full price for just about anything.

6. The best and worst things about shopping are finding a smokin' deal and the crowds.

7. Online shopper or in-person shopper? In person if it's clothing because I always need to try on different sizes; online for books, DVDs, art and jewelry.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Fill in the Blank Friday

1. My Thanksgiving plans this year will include horseback riding with my mom and Uncle, my Dad joining us for dinner after the ride, wandering around and enjoying the fresh mountain air, drinking some wine and maybe seeing a movie. My family doesn't cook for Thanksgiving, instead we head up the canyon a bit to a local Dude ranch and enjoy their awesome festivities. The 4 of us get to spend quality time together outside of the kitchen...and Dad still usually cooks a turkey later so we can have "leftovers".

2. My favorite Thanksgiving was I'm not really sure. I enjoy Thanksgiving, but no specific one comes to mind. My Uncle always comes out for the week and we spend a lot of time together as a family...you know, trying not to kill each other.

3. My signature Thanksgiving dish is probably green beans. I make a killer green bean casserole, but I'm also good at just cooking up fresh green beans in general.

4. My favorite Thanksgiving food is everything! How can you pick just one? I always eat entirely too many green beans, but stuffing, sweet potatoes and turkey are high on the list.

5. Thanksgiving free association! Turkey, sweet potatoes, stuffing, gravy, waldorf salad, green beans, horseback riding, pilgrims, red wine, swinging by the river, mountains, family, pictures, Mikey the bull, laughter, movies, hot coffee, pie, fireplace.

6. Thanksgiving is always a fabulous day!

7. I am thankful for my family, friends, a best friend who stays up late so we can Skype before I go to work, my education, having a job that I love, my health, the health of my family and friends, the ability to travel, being fortunate enough to live in an amazing state, and every other little thing that makes up my world.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

What a lovely weekend

I've slacked again on that whole post-about-your-weekend-at-the-beginning-of-the-week thing. Oh well, I'm pretty sure all of you lovely readers would expect nothing less from me these days...and I certainly wouldn't want to disappoint.

As compared to last weekend's cranky pants theme, this weekend was lovely. It was chilly, there were a few snowflakes and the air smelled like winter in the mountains. There's really no other way to describe the smell of approaching snow here in Fort Collins, much like the smell of Fall is intricately woven with the scent of aspens and the Rocky Mountains. That connectedness to the moutains is one of the things that I love most about my town. It's a lovely comfort to me. Anyway, that was a bit of a tangent, but I hope it's painted a pretty picture in your mind. Come to Colorado! Get lost in the twists and turns of the mountains! You wont regret it.

So, the weekend? Right, back on track...

There was some definite shopping, both for myself and for Christmas gifts. I found the perfect ornament for the lovely Micaela for her ornament swap! I had an idea in mind of what I wanted for her and was lucky enough to find it. I'm still looking for another thing or two to complete the package, but soon it'll be on it's way to lovely Virginia...I hope she loves it! This weekend also involved a few glasses of zinfandel. Cold winter nights call for a glass or two of red wine, don't you think?

I picked up my glass snowflake ornaments and LOVE them! You'll have to excuse how dark the picture is, but it was the best way to show off the iridescent quality of the glass. So cool! I was worried that I'd be disappointed by the final results, but I'm delighted. One or two will go to good homes as gifts, but I think I'm going to have to be greedy and keep the others for myself.

I had a lovely father-daughter date on Saturday. These kinds of afternoons are extremely rare, but lovely when they go according to plan. Dad and I went camera shopping, got hooked in by e-readers (worth it's own post) and finished off our date with frozen yogurt. We both have major sweet tooths and I had owed him a fro-yo date since Father's Day. And even though it started to snow while we were eating our frozen treat, there was a fire going in the shop and the flakes were those gorgeous, fat ones that look very poetic as they fall to the ground.

There was also quality mother-daughter time this weekend in the form of wandering around Old Town, browsing the stores' Christmas displays. While Mom didn't partake, I snagged a hot cup of coffee to keep my fingers warm while we explored (naturlich). I was anti-jacket, because obviously a cardigan is all one needs, right? Hmmm, maybe a coat would've been a good idea...

And, to top off the weekend, my friend Lisa and I met up for a movie Sunday night. She snuck in Starbucks for us, I smuggled in candy (what else are giant purses good for?), we both wore our lounge clothes and we had a great time! I love dates with Lisa!

Monday, November 15, 2010

You all know I'm a big Austen fan...

Goodness knows I am (perhaps) unhealthily obsessed with Jane Austen, but I am not the only one...check out this Pride-and-Prejudice-meets-the-modern-world post found over at English Muse if you'd like a good chuckle on this Monday afternoon.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Fill in the Blank Friday

It's time, once again, for the one constant on my blog: Fill in the Blank Friday! If you want to join in on the fun, head on over to Lauren's little corner of blogland and play along!

1. The most spontaneous thing I've ever done was leasing my car. In all reality this wasn't legitimately spontaneous because my car had been totaled in an accident and I obviously needed new transportation, but the whole thing happened very quickly! And in my world quick = no time to hum and haw like I do = Erin's version of spontaneous. What started as my Dad doing a little car research ended in a test drive and a lease within a few hours.

2. The best gift I've ever received was my amazing friends and family. Maybe that's a cop out answer, but I really do have the best people in my life and I would be lost without them.

3. A time that I was truly and genuinely surprised was when my dad handed me a good amount of cash when I was moving into a new place a few years ago. My dad does not give over money often, and he never announces the rare occasions when he does. He knew that I needed some extra cash and as I was leaving the house he hugged me, put money into my hand, smiled and nodded as I thanked him and we've never spoken of it again. That's his style.

4. I can't leave the house without my purse. It contains all of the necessities including, but not limited to: my cell phone, keys, wallet, chapstick and a book.

5. My favorite day of the week is Saturday because it's a totally free day. Ever since I started working full time I've come to appreciate Saturdays in a way that I never had before. I (usually) get to dictate how my day will go, there's rarely any guilt involved when I end up doing next to nothing, and it always on a positive note because I know that when I wake up in the morning it'll still be the weekend.

6. Something that can always make me laugh is my bestie, Jamie. She's always getting herself into awkward, yet hilarious situations, and hearing her recount them makes me laugh until I cry...and, it's even better when I get to witness them myself. Haha...love you, bestie!

7. My perfect day would include going out for brunch with my girlfriends, drinking entirely too much coffee, shopping downtown with my Mom, going on a long walk, getting lost in Barnes and Noble, going out for dinner and a beer and ending the day cozied up with a chick flick.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Little Letters v.2

Dear Colin Firth,
No matter what, you'll always be Mr. Darcy to me...
and you'll always be sexily stepping out of a lake with your white shirt clinging to your chest.
Love, Me.

Dear Love Actually,
'Tis your season, and I cannot wait to obsessively watch you.
My sappy romantic heart needs a few sighs from time to time.
Love, Me.

Dear Boston,
I'm craving you.
There's simply no other way to put it.
My heart, my soul, my psyche crave your energy.
Love, Me.

Dear Ann Taylor Loft boyfriend cardigan,
You're perfect. You're cozy.
You fit just right,
and combined with a ruffled tank and dark jeans,
you make me feel classically beautiful.
Love, Me.

Dear Mom,
You're the best. End of story.
Love, Me

Dear Snow,
I almost cannot believe it took you this long to make an appearance here in Northern Colorado.
You're truly lovely, but I prefer to enjoy you from the comfort of my couch,
rather than my desk.
Love, Me.

Dear Jane Eyre,
You're being made into a
fabulous-looking movie, but I haven't read you yet.
I think it's time to remedy that.
Love, Me.

Dear Chex Mix,
I don't actually like your pretzels,
which is why I pick them out first.
I much prefer your zesty chex pieces.
Please add more.
Thank you.
Love, Me

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Belated weekend recap: gloomy days were here...

I'm not really sure what's going on with me, but there doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to my blogging. I constantly have thoughts running through my head, and think, "I need to blog about that!" multiple times each day, but then I get lazy and never put pen to paper (so to speak). So, here we are on a Wednesday and I'm finally sitting down to blog about my weekend...pathetic. Oh well. And to all of you who have stuck with me: Thank you!

This weekend wasn't all that exciting; in fact, I was in a fairly crappy mood for the majority of it. I was wallowing in myself a tad, which is never pretty. I was hormonal (a terrifying thing with a Gemini personality), missing my bestie and questioning what the f*ck is going on with the guy I'm dating (or should it be "dating"...too many questions at the moment). All of these things seem to be perfectly normal occurances in a girl's life, but combined together plus my lack of sleep made for an Eeyore-like Erin. I was snappy, prone to tears and not really up for social mingling. It was a little scary. haha...

Anyway, things are better now and there were some definite highlights to my grey-clouds-hanging-over-my-head weekend:

- Mom and I indulged in pedicures on Saturday! I enjoyed a cup of tea and we flipped through the latest Vogue while our toes were made pretty with deep, Fall hues.

- We wandered into my favorite store in Old Town and I got a little giddy thanks to the Christmas decorations.

- I made glass snowflake ornaments with my mom at the glass studio. This was the first time in a few years that I actually worked with the glass myself, and it felt good!

(the "before" picture...can't wait to see them fired!)

- I got my meningococcal vaccine thanks to my employer's free clinic. Even though a shot isn't very exciting (and has left me with quite the bruise), it did make my parents happy to know that my vaccination is up to date.

- Some very cool bottle decals finally made their way onto my kitchen walls. They've been stashed behind a piece of furniture in my dining room for entirely too long.

- Mom and I found the most perfect lamp at Pier 1...on sale!

- I found out I'm paired up with the lovely Micaela for her ornament swap! I cannot wait to find the perfect ornament for her, and to see what she sends me.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Fill in the blank Friday

1. My last haircut was October 15th. I have short hair that grows quickly, so I normally get my hair done every 5 or 6 weeks. Plus, I love my hair stylist and it's always so good to catch-up.

2. My most daring hair moment was probably when I went super, super blonde a few years ago. I love coloring my hair (I got my first highlights when I was 11) and changing things up from time to time, but I usually stick within the same general spectrum; I rarely go super light or super dark, although I'm feeling the urge to go super dark on my hair...

3. A hairstyle I'd never be brave enough to try is a true pixie cut. I think they're adorable, and I've toyd with the idea before, but I just don't have the guts to do it.

4. I've always dreamt of being a (blonde, brunette or red-head) redhead. See this post. I almost get red of some sort put into my hair when I get color done, and when the weather starts to get colder, I tend to go redder.

5. My go-to hair do is what you see in all of my pictures: my bob. My hair is stick straight, cut short and unless I'm annoyed with my bangs and have them clipped back, my hair looks the same every day.

6. My biggest hair disaster was when I went to a new stylist who didn't listen to anything I wanted and pretty much cut all of my hair off. This was in 9th grade and I don't think I had a piece of hair on my head that was longer than 2 inches. I was so upset after it happened.

7. A hairstyle I am dying to try is pretty much anything you have to have long hair to do. Haha. I'm not really cut out for long hair, but I have those days where I wish my hair was long and full so I could do pretty braids and buns and messy ponytails.

8. My best hair day was...probably when I was 7 and had my hair curled into gorgeous ringlets for my Aunt's wedding. I had really long hair when I was little and it was soft and full of natural blonde highlights, and looked so pretty all done up. Hopefully my next best hair day will be at my wedding or something fun like that.

9. The worst hairstyle I ever had was the result of my hair disaster in #6.

10. My hair is, as I said, naturally straight, pretty flat when left to its own devices and getter darker as I get older. It's also quite soft, which is nice, but it tends to get frizzy if I don't condition it.