Tuesday, April 29, 2008
This is for those of you who laugh at the way I talk to my dog, a.k.a., The Baby. On Friday night, we had a coworker of Omid's (& friend of Arezou's) over for dinner as he & his family are moving up to Seattle soon. This guy's name is Marty. Marty was talking to Remy like Remy was an adult. Remy doesn't do 'adult' speak. Remy responds to baby talk. Before the end of the night, we had convinced Marty to call Remy 'the baby.' It was great! Remy loved it! :) For those of you who don't know Marty, he is a big, hunting/gun loving guy. That should say it all.
Sunday, April 27, 2008
Last night Omid & I attended a World Vision (Women of Vision) dinner & auction in Portland. We were invited my friend & coworker Lyn & her husband, Alan. They support this cause (& sponsored our table - THANKS SO MUCH!) - and what an important cause it is. I knew little about World Vision, except for maybe a commercial or two I had seen on television.
Hosts Lyn & Alan
What a bubble I have been living in! Did you know there are children in Mongolia who live in tunnels under the streets to stay warm? I didn't. A few posts ago, I blogged about a show on BBC America called Dumped. That was a reality show featuring contestants who live in a landfill for a few weeks. Well, last night we saw photos of children foraging in a landfill in Cambodia for real - not some trumped up reality show. The saddest for me was the photos & stories of kids used for the sex industry. Just horrible stories!
It was an amazing night and really left it's mark on our hearts. We came home and told the kids. Both kids will now sponsor a child and pray for that child (along with Omid & myself too). We are so very lucky to live here. Last night's program just made that so much more clear to us all.
We did bid on a few items for the silent auction (but were outbid) - the big ticket items were amazing. We couldn't bid on any of those things - but it was fun to see how much money was raised for this wonderful cause ($3000 for a Labradoodle puppy, $7000 for a 7 night Hawaii stay, etc.).
The entertainment for the night was a man named Chata Addy. He is originally from Ghana and played the drums. He invited a few brave souls from the audience up on stage to either play the drums or dance. It was very entertaining. We saw him outside after the event was over. He gave us his card. He is available for school assemblies (which I think kids would love), weddings, & parties. http://www.chataaddy.com/
We also saw some local celebrities. Julie Emry was the emcee. She used to anchor the news on KATU & KOIN. Omid spotted Mike Donahue (current anchor on KOIN). That was our brush with fame for the night.
Polyglots Jenny & Laurent
Here are some sites to visit if you want to learn more about World Vision. www.worldvision.org/hope
Saturday, April 26, 2008
I had a great movie of a water balloon fight, but accidentally deleted it from my camera's card. :(
I am so, so sad about this.
Friday, April 25, 2008
*use a reusable grocery bag
*take shorter showers
*don't run the water while brushing your teeth
*recycle all paper goods, cans & bottles
*unplug appliances (coffee maker, toaster, cell phone charger) when not in use
*turn the heat down when leaving the house
*turn off lights when leaving a room
*use eco-friendly cleaning supplies
*change lightbulbs to CFL bulbs
*wash clothes in cold water
*use rags for cleaning
Also worth noting is that we have reduced our garbage to only 3 1/2 bags per week. That number is down from 6 or 7. Our recycling bins on the other hand are usually overflowing by garbage day.
BBC America had a show on last week called Dumped. It was a reality show with 6 people living together in a land fill (yuck!). The contestants had to live off the dump (find shelter, food, wash, etc.) with only things they found there. After several weeks, the contestants had found things to recycle & sell for cash (which they used to throw a party at the end). Each was told their carbon footprint before the show & again at the end. It was fun to watch. I am sure it's just a matter of time before the same show makes it to America.
Thursday, April 24, 2008
He went to the school to find the boys. I was so mad at him. He has never gone off like this before. He finally came home with the boys a few minutes later. I have ignored him all afternoon (which he can't stand and frankly, neither can I). He is snuggling right behind me on the computer chair....so he must feel forgiven.
I can't stop thinking about what could have happened to him (hit by a car, stolen, bitten by another dog). Though I am so thankful he is home and in one piece.
Here is a short article from The Seattle Times newspaper. http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2004367150_riceshortage23m.html It appears that the everyday consumer will have to battle it out at Costco with restaurant owners for bags of rice.
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
Naseem's new favorite cracker: Flip Sides.
Pretzel on one side, regular cracker on the other. These little crackers are so delicious and addicting. Just like with eating potato chips, it's a challenge to stop at one.
Saturday, April 19, 2008
Friday, April 18, 2008
Just so you know, I am not a mean &/or vindictive person (which you should already know!). I have saved the best sleepy photo for last. Omid took this picture of me several years ago. It is so painful to look at. I knew that if I posted the above photos, I would have to bring this one out of the vault.
Be careful when you visit our house that you don't fall asleep...you may just have your photo taken.
Thursday, April 17, 2008
So...here is Jane's Broccoli Salad recipe so you and your family can love it too.
Jane's Broccoli Salad
2 bunches of broccoli (cut into small pieces)
1 bunch of green onions, chopped
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
4-6 slices of bacon, browned & crumbled
Mix all ingredients together. Right before serving, add the dressing.
Dressing: 1 cup mayonnaise, 1/2 cup sugar, 3 T. tarragon
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Afterwards, we went to Trader Joes. I needed more gorgonzola cheese gnocchi. I also wanted to pick up some interesting bread my friend from work, Colleen told me about. Colleen said she buys this bread called Ezekiel 4:9 bread. It is bread that is listed in the Bible. She said it is a complete protein and very filling. Once in TJ's, I made a bee line for the bread section. I found it no problem. Can't wait to try and get filled up. My big problem is I eat breakfast, then am starving by 9:30 and again at lunch.
Here's a quote from the bakery website:
Ezekiel 4:9® Organic Sprouted Whole Grain Products are inspired by the Holy Scripture verse: "Take also unto thee Wheat, and Barley, and beans, and lentils, and millet, and Spelt, and put them in one vessel, and make bread of it..." Ez 4:9 They also sell Genesis 1:29 bread.
While we're on scripture, here's one more for you to look up: John 3:16
So after we checked out of TJ's, Matty and I were heading to the car. Matty was carrying my groceries for me. I heard Matty say, 'Oh no!" I look up and this poor handicapped man in an electronic wheelchair was hanging over the sidewalk. Two wheels on the sidewalk, two wheels off. I rushed over to him along with a man. We managed to get him righted & he was so thankful. Poor guy.
An eventful afternoon. :)
My head is itching just thinking about it.
It has led to me severely cutting back on purchases. I can do without my Starbucks (in fact, I have done w/o it since December), I have cut back to shopping & purchasing things at Target - just because I wanted to browse the aisles & see what was new. I now only go to get things we desperately need. But...I can't do without some things that I see as necessities: hair cut & color. I have cut that back to every 12-16weeks or so, but I need and love the time I get with Miranda (the wonderful lady who cuts/colors my hair). I am doing my own pedicures now and it looks it. Boo hoo.
Omid has resorted to cutting Remy's nails himself (instead of paying the vet to do it). That is probably a good thing. Whenever Remy would go to the vet to get his pedicure, we could hear him crying/whining the entire 5 minutes. He lays patiently while Omid works on his toes, and I feed him treats (like a king getting fed grapes).
I don't see an end in sight to the high prices, so that looks like it will cut back on our summer camping as well. I don't want to spend a fortune on gas just to camp for a few days. I would rather put the small fortune towards our savings instead.
Monday, April 14, 2008
Today would have been Dumpling's 28th birthday. Dumpling was our poodle from way back when. We got him when I was in the 5th grade. When I was in the 4th grade, I was bitten by our neighbor's white German Shepherd. I used to love dogs, but this bite made me very afraid of them. My parents did the dog version of "if you fall off a horse, get right back on it." They bought my sisters and I a dog. Our other dog, Fletcher ( a Scottie), had died a year earlier. When we first got Dumpling, I was really scared of him. I remember being afraid he was going to bite me like Simba had. It took a while for me to overcome my fear, and then Dumpling and I were sharing popsicles and ice cream.
Omid loved Dumpling too. The very first time Omid came to Olympia to visit me over summer break, he came into the house and Dumpling was lying on the stairs with his left leg crossed over his right. He just stared at Omid. Omid said, "is he friendly?" I said, "yes he is! C'mon Dumpling!" Dumpling ran down the stairs and greeted Omid. About 6 months after this meeting, Omid surprised me with a Yorkie! This was the perfect gift...except for that I lived in the dorm. Einstein lived at WSU for about 10 weeks until he was discovered and I got into trouble for having a dog. So, Einstein had to move to Olympia and live with Dumpling and my parents. My parents loved Tiny (as he came to be known). Tiny lived for 17 years. Dumpling, sadly, only lived for 14.5 years.
When I was pregnant with Naseem, my sister Brenda called us in Pullman and told us that Dumpling had wandered away. He was blind, deaf & missing. I was so sad. Omid drove me from Pullman to Olympia (a 6 hour drive). We spent all morning looking for Dumpling. No luck! After searching all day, we had to drive back to Pullman as Omid had an exam the next day. Dumpling was found after two days. He wandered back into the neighborhood on his own. A neighbor called my sister and told her that he 'thought' he saw our dog. B ran down the cul-de-sac and found Dumpling. She immediatley picked him up and he was so disoriented. Poor Baby! My parents took him to the vet and the vet said he was in good shape. Sadly, it was not to last. Dumpling died about a month later. :( He was such a good boy. Einstein refused to even walk near the section of the yard he was buried in for over 6 months. Remy met Einstein only one time before he had to be put down. Remy was really afraid of this teeny 4 pound dog. So cute!
Remy is still working on his new bone. We came home from school and gave it to him again. I had to take it away from him as his lips were raw & irritated. They seemed much better today. He was so happy to get the bone back! Nas took a short video of her chasing Remy with the bone in his mouth.
Now I hope I can stay awake today to proctor the 4th grade WASL test. Yawn!
Sunday, April 13, 2008
Saturday, April 12, 2008
When the party finally ended, Ward paid us back for the burnout Omid left in his driveway last week. When it's daylight, I will post the photo of the tire mark he left us. We tried to take a video of the burnout, but it didn't work. Just a lot of laughter and headlights. Stay tuned!
We went to an Indian restaurant called Swagat. I have no idea what it means, but it was fun to say. They have a huge menu. Some of the items like 'lamb & chicken saag' I just couldn't order. I have no idea what saag means in Hindi, but in Farsi, 'sag' is DOG. There were a few other things that didn't translate nicely, so I can't post them here, but I am sure you get the idea. When the waiter came, Omid said to try the lamb _______ (through a fit of laughter). I was trying to keep a straight face and place my order at the same time.
I ordered this lamb dish that was sauteed in almond powder & spices. It was really good. Matty ordered Tandoori shrimp. The shrimp was so salty he couldn't eat it. Too bad. Everyone else seemed to enjoy their meals. Omid, Arezou & I shared our meals with Matty so he could have something to eat. He also ate several baskets of the fried naan. That was tasty.
I forgot my camera, so there are no pictures to share of our dinner. It's too bad as the dinner was served on stainless steel plates/bowls. That was interesting.
Friday, April 11, 2008
We currently have 69*! It's been so good to come home, take my shoes off and stand in my barefeet on patio. The pavement is so warm and I am in such a great mood. The liquid sunshine we have been having just wasn't cutting it.
I am praying the weather will hold for a while.
Remy & his girlfriend Ruby.
Several years ago, a coworker and I were bragging about our wonderful spaghetti sauces. She challenged me to a cook off. I think everyone who was present in the staff lounge at the time was invited. I lost the challenge, but I only think that is because my sauce is misunderstood. I have two big fans here at home who LOVE the sauce. We can only make the sauce when Omid is out of town...he doesn't care for it. But - he did vote for me in the challenge (because he had to!).
Thursday, April 10, 2008
I am sick & tired of being cold and having to wear my old winter jacket all day long. My jacket has seen better days and it's least 5 years old. I have been looking for a cute navy blue or black pea coat, but haven't found any in my price range.
Hopefully - I can pack the winter jacket off to Goodwill and the sun will come out and stay for a long time!
Also...The Office finally returns tonight (after how many months??). We are so excited as it's our favorite show.
Arezou & Evan came over for dinner. Remy was waiting for their arrival. He has to be the first to let us know when guests arrive. Remy's lookout.
Finally eating (8 p.m.!) I think Nas was so hungry, she was wistfully looking at the food and not the camera.
The finished meat.
Rice with saffron.
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
the onsen (hot springs)
I had always wanted to visit Japan and felt so envious of Omid going there every month. Finally, my chance came and I tagged along on a business trip. I loved it! It was the neatest & cleanest place I have ever visited (with the exception of Finland. Finland is extremely clean).
The Hug by Marie Mason
The catalog offers a neat pop art/Andy Warhol style painting of your dog. But...it's $250. Maybe Nas can do something like that on photoshop for me (for free!).
Monday, April 7, 2008
I made a super delicious spaghetti sauce. Deciding this super delicious sauce needed some red wine to accompany it, I opened a bottle of the Trader Joe's Charles Shaw $2.99 merlot. I saw it received 98 points (somewhere). Big mistake! I bought a bottle of it yesterday. I told Omid, "it's been years since I bought some & I can't remember why I stopped buying it." Well, now I remember why. It's horrible!
After dinner, we went over to Arezou & Evan's. They were gutting the house, getting rid of things they don't want to take back to Chicago with them. Needless to say, we left with the Excursion filled to the brim of things we didn't want Goodwill to have. Naseem & I argued over an Armani dress (thanks so very much, Arezoujoon!!!). I won. Can't wait for an 'evening' out where I can wear this gorgeous dress.
We left A & E's house around 8:30 p.m. (& should have headed home for bed), but Omid decided to drop in on Lin & Ward. We were only going to stay for 15 minutes, but stayed 45! When we left, Omid did a major burnout (with all our friends watching & a few of their neighbors too). Omid laughed the whole way home. He couldn't believe the smoke. He kept asking, "did you see how much smoke there was? Ha Ha Ha!" I told him I could see one neighbor looking out her window at us (while Omid was wildly revving up the engine) and knew her from school (yikes!). Omid had fun reliving his teenage driving years - that's for sure!
Sunday, April 6, 2008
Naseem sitting in the car...too cold for her outside.
Omid & Matty walking around.
We stopped off at Bonneville and saw several sea lions on shore. This trap held 4 sea lions in it. They were barking up a storm. If you click on the picture, it should zoom in (I think).
Saturday, April 5, 2008