Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Random Thoughts and a Swap

Lookie, 2 days, 2 blog posts! Who's on top of their game?!? Damn right.

Last week Kev and I finally had a chance to see the Imitation Game. (AMAZING). But since it had been a while since it was released, the only place we could see it was at Raleighwood.

For all you non-locals, Raleighwood is a theater were you order dinner. The tickets are pretty cheap, I think it was $9.50 for the 2 of us and you just order food. Sounds great, right? If I were a 15 year old boy and only ate pizza, burgers and potato skins, I would be in heaven. Since all of that gives me a stomachache, it's a little difficult for me to find something to eat.

Everytime we go to Raleighwood, it reminds me of OTB. That's Off Track Betting for those of you who aren't from the north. 

OTB is where your dad and uncle go to watch horse races on small TVs, bet on them, smoke and eat greasy food. Raleighwood is cheap movies, greasy food and instead of going with your day, your uncle brings his wife and they have some onion rings and a hot dog while watching the movie.

Both places smell like grease and broken dreams. 

Aside from the grease smell, the movie was EXCELLENT. Seriously, so, so good. For once I didn't spend the entire movie trying to figure out if Benedict Cumberbatch was attractive or not. Because he wasn't. Not once during the movie did I think he was attractive, They must have only filmed him from his bad angle. You really, must see it!

Let's see, what else do I need to get caught up on? A few weeks ago I signed up for the Mug O' Comfort swap. The idea is that you get hooked up with a fellow blogger, you get to know each other and send a box of goodies. 

I was matched with Jennifer over at Inner Workings of a Female Mind. Unfortunately for us we were both super busy and didn't have a chance to really converse much. Still, I was excited to bust into my package as soon as it arrived. 

There was a little travel mug and cold drink cup in shades of pink, socks, hand lotion, chapstick, gum, a pouch and there's a leopard print scarf underneath all of that. lol.

I see that Jennifer loves Target as much as I do. The funny part is that I sent her the same Chapstick. Cake batter for the win!

I'm probably not going to get too much use out of the mugs, it's just because I have an abnormal obsession with keeping my coffee as hot as I can for as long as humanly possible. I love me a good vacuum seal. Check out my new precious.

20 ounces of coffee AND it can keep your beverage hot for up to 7 hours. I made it 3 today but might have to test its limits.

A few weeks ago Kev asked me what the heck I ordered from Poland.
It's Mister TEA! Bwah ha ha ha.

I got it off Etsy and didn't realize it was coming from Poland. When I opened the package and showed Kev, he immediately understood why I couldn't control myself.

Hope you're having a great Tuesday!

Coffee or Tea?

Ever tried a Contigo mug? Best EVER!
Monday, March 30, 2015

Guess Who's Back!

Hey all! sorry about that extended absence, I really didn't plan on taking the month of March off from blogging, it just kinda happened. Hopefully more people than just my mother in law missed my posts.

It's been a crazy month. I spent the last 2-3 weeks not feeling very well and that culminated in an outpatient procedure last Tuesday. I'm definitely on the mend and will be fine. It definitely put a kink in my workouts, Whole30 plan and blogging. Add that to hiring 6 new people in the last month and sneak blogging at work wasn't happening,... Not that it ever did, really, just in case someone I work with stumbles across this blog, Really,  NEVER blog in the mornings before people come in and want me to pay attention to them. Neeeeeevvvvver.

Oh and March is a crazy KD report month. Budgets, Monthly reports, annual reports and CAB reports all due so grades can be calculated for Convention. At least THOSE are done.

Enough about all of that, let's chat about this past weekend. On Friday I left work and met Kev at the Angus Barn for some meat and boozy goodness. As usual we split the giant prime rib, Kev had a potato, steamed veggies for me, a Cosmo and the house Cab. It had been a long week, between me being out on Monday and Tuesday and going at full speed Wed - Friday, I needed to relax.

As usual, everything was fantastic, we left plenty full and all was right in the world. We needed to eat a little earlier than normal to give ourselves time to digest and get extra hungry for Saturday's festivities, the Beer and Bacon Festival!

Several months ago Kev bought us VIP tickets to the Beer and Bacon festival. For about 6 hours on the website, the VIP tickets were the same price as the regular ones, which was about a $30 savings. For $39 you got to enter the festival 2 hours earlier than the rest of the people and were treated to unlimited speciality bacon dishes from local restaurants. Shorter crowds and unlimited bacon? Why yes! Our beer and bacon loving friends Lacey and Rob joined us.

It was unseasonably cold on Saturday in Raleigh. 40 some degrees in NC at the end of March just isn't right. That's Pittsburgh weather and part of the reason why I left, End of March should be sandal weather, instead I'm still in flannel, jeans and boots. Not bitter though. Funny story, Lacey and I were surprise twinsies with our red flannels, jeans and boots. 

When you go to these festivals you get a glass to sample the all the delicious booze, I get it, you just need a taste, not an entire glass.... 

It was held over at the Koko Booth Amphitheater in Cary and as soon as we walked in Kev found some fellow bacon-loving folks. I think he was a Bacon pimp and these lovely ladies were his stable of bacon ladies. Kev was thrilled.

Like the beard? I LOVE the beard. We'll see if it makes it through the summer but I;m a big fan. #BeardLife

We immediately got to work eating the bacon. First up was bacon pizza. It was pretty good. Bacon, cheese, red onions, Yum. 

As we worked our way though that line, we also just got some bacon on a napkin.

It was literally, bacon off the griddle. There were 2 different bacon stations and Kev hit both up more than once. That man loves him some bacon.

We sampled some beer and booze and then saw a line for bacon, cheese and potato soup. Now, I HATE cream based soups, really, really, hate them. Bleck. Then again, I only like 4 soups. Not a soup gal. But THIS, THIS soup was AMAZING! I couldn't ever eat an entire bowl but this with some crusty bread thing, I could die happy.

 Then again, it was as cold as a witches titty and anything that gave off the slightest bit of warmth was a winner in my book.

I don't have a picture but my very most favorite moonshine dealer was there, Sugarlands Distllery. Their butterscotch moonshine rocks my world. If you can find it, buy it and thank me later.

We also found this station.

 How could you not?

The best way I can describe the Bacon Explosion is a sausage bacon meatloaf with bacon inside and out.

Not my favorite, I took a bite and gave the rest to Kev. He LOVED it. 

We also had a bacon potato casserole which was mashed potatoes with cheese, bacon bits and scallions. I've never really liked mashed potatoes so this was a big meh for me.

More beer and booze... Then there was a pulled pork slider with jalapeno bacon and slaw. I don't really care for jalapeno bacon but it was a quality slider.

Missing pictures of the BLT (ehhh), Fondue with bacon jam and focaccia (YUM), Creamed Spinach with bacon (needed a pita chip but surprisingly tasty), Bacon wrapped cheesy tater tot with a random jalapeno (didn't need the rando pepper). Then there were 2 fails, the bacon mac and cheese ran out and we never found the bacon potato wedges. We were supposed to choose our favorite and put out ballots in the box by 2pm. Sadly, no one had a pen and there weren't any pens at the table. 

As soon as the general admission opened at 2pm the place got super crowded and getting booze became next to impossible, By 3pm we called it a day and headed over to Bad Daddy's Burger Bar to split a burger and some tots. Let's be honest, Kev ate the burger and I ate his tots because I have zero self control when it comes to tater tots. It's one of the main reasons I love the Whole Foods breakfast bar, the tots. Heck, full disclosure, I had tots for breakfast and lunch on Saturday, 

Thoughts on the festival? I didn't get as much booze as I did at the Beer and Bourbon festival because we spent a lot of time waiting in line for food. However, the VIP was SOOOOO worth it. Fewer people and free bacon samples was absolutely worth it, The people who came after 2 had to pay for their food and most of the samples were gone. We'd definitely go again an would get the VIP in a heartbeat. It was a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon. Then we went home and napped. The End.

Alright, time to get ready for my FINAL 2 new hires! I have two contract employees starting today, Liam Khaki Pants and Joe Four First Names. I'll tell them they already have nicknames in a day or 2. 

Back to the linking up!

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Weight Watchers Cereal Review

A few weeks ago I received an email from BzzAgent asking if I would be interested in reviewing the new Weight Watchers Cereal. Who doesn't like cereal? I said, sign me up!

I received a box of the Frosted Shredded Wheat and the Oat Clusters with Cherries and Almonds. I received both of these for free along with some coupons to share but all opinions are my own.

I give both of these a big thumbs down. Weight Watchers has been trying for years to produce "healthy" foods that people can use on their weight loss journey. Weight Watchers advertises that for only 3pp these cereals fit into a healthy diet. 

I'm going to leave my opinion about Weight Watchers off this post, I'll just talk about the cereal.

When I opened the box of Oat Cluster Cereal, my initial thought was, "Damn this is sweet". Then I looked at the ingredients and saw why.


Corn, whole grain wheat, sugar, cherries(cherries, sugar, glycerin), whole grained oats, almonds,corn syrup, contains 2% or less of salt, malt extract, molasses, cinnamon, honey, natural and artificial flavor, baking soda, caramel color, bht(to preserve freshness). Vitamins and minerals: vitamin b1(thiamine mono nitrate), vitamin b2(riboflavin) niacin, vitamin b6, folic acid, vitamin b12, vitamin a, palmitate, vitamin c, vitamin d, reduced iron, zinc
Corn syrup, molasses and honey. When it comes to weight loss, maybe not having 3 different sweeteners is a good idea? Maybe that's just me. I was really disappointed in the number of junk ingredients listed. Ugh. I'm not a fan of eating high fructose corn syrup at all. All the GMOs and junk in our food is what's making us fat

After my first handful. I didn't try it again.

As for the Frosted Shredded Wheat with Protein, guess what the added protein is, soy. Yep, soy, so that cereal was a no go for me. Kev tried it and he was unimpressed. 

Sorry folks, I can't stand behind any of these products. Want a good cereal, go to Whole Foods and find something with less junk.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Raleigh Comic Con and Pondering

Does anyone else have a month that really, really sucks? As in, there was some sort of horrible loss(es) during the month and each year you just want to make through the month unscathed? That's what March is like for us. Please Lord, let us just make it out of March alive. Anywho, March started on Sunday and so far so good! Three days in but I don't want to jinx it.

OK, I have a few things to confess, well they aren't really confessions, more like things to ponder.

I started the Whole last week and so far so good! I decided to join a first timer group on Facebook and for the most part, it's been really interesting and helpful. But there have been some posts and comments that have just boggled my mind. I mean really, if someone chooses to not follow the program, chill out, but instead they're throwing fits on-line.

I posted this picture of Trader Joe's plantain chips to see if the oil was compliant. It wasn't and someone went on a tangent about "people" looking for a substitute for chips and anything chip-like wasn't acceptable.... First of all child, slow your roll and get away from the computer, If a question about a chip triggers that kind of response, you've got some issues. #LetItGo

I do have 2 other cats and they're both neurotic. You know how people have cats and sometimes cats have people? I am Godiva's person. Ever since we got her as a kitten, I was her person. I promise that if you come to my house, the cat will be about 5 feet from me at all times. No lie. You could also pet her for hours and hours and hours and she would be absolutely fine. She's also still pulling all the hair off her backside. I think the cone of shame is in her future again, Or kitty Prozac.

I had a great idea to put a cat sweater on her to keep her from eating her but fur, If she had a sweater or pants to cover the areas she won't leave alone, it would solve my problem. I can make this happen. #CatPants

My freshman year of college I went to a small all-women's college in Virginia, Sweet Briar College. The other day, the College announced that after 114 years, they would be closing their doors and the this year's would be the last class to graduate. I'm really bummed to hear that, even though I left after a year and ran away to Pitt, it was a great school and I have so many fond memories of that year. It's really unfortunate that after such a long and rich history, they were unable to keep the school going, It really stinks. #RIPSweetBriar

The last few days Kev has been watching Colombo on Netflix. I'm a little young to get Colombo but he really likes it. Here's the thing, I had NO idea how long those dang episodes were. Really, each episode is mini series length. The other day, I called him when I left the gym and he just started an episode. I drove to Whole Foods, shopped, ran into a friend, chatted, came home, took a bath, made dinner, ate it and Colombo STILL hadn't solved the dang case. It was like 3 hours later. #DangColombo

This month Raleigh is hosting it's first Comic Con. I'm not a sci-fi person by any stretch of the imagination but we're definitely going, WHY???

Because David Tennant!!! OMG YEEEESSSS!!!! Seriously, Doctor Who is the only sci-fi thing I give 2 shakes about and 10 was the BEST. Kev is totally down to go as well because you know who else is coming??

Shatner.YES SHATNER is coming too, Kev is a huge Trek fan and loves him some Shatner, Yes, we are going and will totally push anyone who gets in the way of our respective fangirling. I never though I would be excited about going to Comic Con...

Don't FORGET! The free shipping code for the cr2f Etsy shop is "cookiescardioclothes". I forgot to mention, I'm not getting anything out of the shameless plug, she;s my friend and you should go to her shop and buy her stuff, 'cause it's awesome!

Wednesday Link-Up!
Making Melissa

#Hashtaghumpday @ Life with Lolo
Monday, March 2, 2015

Can we rewind the weekend?

Unfortunately that's not a good thing, I'd like to rewind the weekend, start over and skip it entirely.

Last week was just a complete and utter mess. Two snow days during the last week of the month is the last thing a Sales Manager wants to see. We left early on Tuesday, normal time on Weds, late open on Thursday and I couldn't get out of my driveway. Friday was normal but it was still Friday when most of them had been off the day before. Oy. 

I started off the weekend with a trip to the gym, I'm currently on a 5 day streak of weights/cardio, yay me. I was also involved in many a conversations about that damn dress. It was only ever white and gold for me.

I'm a horrible person, but for me, there is nothing funnier than a Stevie Wonder joke. I think it was all of those "Truly Tasteless" Joke Books I read as a kid.  

After the gym we just chilled and watched some Netflix and went to bed. Friday morning when I went to feed the cats, I noticed that Titus seemed a little lethargic but didn't think anything of it. He was always cranky and thought he was just being his fat self. When we work up Saturday morning we discovered that he's passed away overnight. You were such a jerk but we loved you a lot. RIP T-man. I wrote a tribute to him here.

We were pretty bummed the rest of the weekend. Saturday morning, Kev took Titus to the vet so they could take care of him, I'd have liked to have buried him under the blueberry bush but the ground was frozen and covered with snow. 

After he got back I headed to the gym to take my mind off Titus.When I got back, our friend had dropped off her two dogs for us to watch for the weekend. 

For the next two days, this was what I saw every time I took a bite of food.

Raine would be the best diet companion, you'd get tired of her staring at you every time you ate and eventually you'd stop eating all together. lol

I got home, Kev went to play racquetball and I got my nails done. I even went to a buy one, get two pair free, shoe sale and walked away empty handed. I couldn't even buy shoes.

Since we were really bummed out, we thought a nice dinner out would be a nice thing, I'm doing Whole 30 and thought that a steakhouse would be the best bet. Hey, you can't go wrong with steak and some steamed veggies. We'd looked on Open Table for an open reservation and found one at Jimmy V's Steakhouse in Cary. 

Don't go there! We had one of the absolute worst meals and restaurant experiences there. I think this is hands down, one of our top three worst. I won't go onto much detail, you can read my Yelp review here. In a nutshell, my steak was horribly overcooked and the manager argued with me that it wasn't. Absolutely got into it with me in the middle of the restaurant. Triangle peeps, there are at least 5 better steakhouses in the area, do yourselves a favor and go somewhere else. 

Sunday morning we woke up to another winter wonderland, Freezing rain and ice covered everything, the trees, the cars, the stairs, the driveway... Awesome. Fun fact, my Jetta is sooooo much better in the snow than Kev's CR-V. I can power though the sludge in the cul du sac and get up our driveway. Kev is just stuck at the bottom of the hill. I attribute new tires and the elusive 5th cylinder. Love me some German engineering.

Church was cancelled for Kev and I got to work prepping Whole 30 food for the week.

I had a spaghetti squash that had been sitting in my pantry for at least two months. (DO THEY EVER GO BAD?!?!). cooked that, some purple sweet potatoes, ground turkey and I turned a head of cauliflower into "cauliflower rice". I'm going to pretend that it is. I put a good bit of ghee in there, which is Whole30 compliant and adds the taste of buttery goodness.

I made a "Pizza" casserole with the squash, ground turkey, compliant marinara sauce, onions, 2 eggs and nutritional yeast.

I'm eating some now and it's not bad, It needs a little more flavor though, I think ground beef or sausage would be a little more flavorful, I'm still going to eat it though. :) 

Another day at the gym, food prep, a trip to Trader Joe's and doing laundry. Really exciting, right?

Sorry to be a downer, I'm usually full of a little more sunshine. Hopefully this will be a better week.

BTW, Happy Birthday to my little Brother! Have an awesome day!!

Linking Up!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

The Best Worst Cat Ever

Saturday morning we woke up to find that our cranky old man had passed away in the middle of the night. Titus was our first cat, an enormous pain in the ass and had more personality than any animal I've ever met.

In the spring of 2007 Kev and I decided to get a cat. We'd both had cats growing up and thought that it would be a good idea. I was a proponent of going to the animal shelter and Kev wanted craigslist. Because cats are free there.... FYI, free cats aren't really free. 

He found a lady who'd rescued a stray who they estimated to be about 6 months old. She said his name was Elmo and couldn't keep him. We took one look at the cranky kitten with the crooked tail and knew that 1. He was coming home with us and 2. He needed a new name. We thought about Rocky (because I fricking love Rocky) but decided that he needed a warrior's name. Titus it was.

I always swore that Titus was once a man, reincarnated into a cat. I figured he wasn't that nice of a person in his previous life and got stuck as a cat to redeem himself. I'm not sure he did though, lol,

Titus always did what he wanted, when he wanted, everyone else be damned. When we were still at our old house, we were interviewing someone from Merry Maids to potentially clean the house. Titus walked by and she said. "Oh, I didn't realize you had a cat, I didn't smell anything. I'm really allergic". The minute she said allergic, he stopped, turned around, jumped up on the table and started rubbing on her. That cat was NEVER a lover, he could take or leave most people. I know in my soul that he heard her say she was allergic and went over on purpose. We just apologized and explained that he was a terrible jerk.

We eventually got 2 more cats and the dog and Titus could have taken or left all of them. He probably would have been happiest as an only kitty. 

He really wasn't a fan when we got Cleo and he started spraying all over the house. It was tough but we decided the only way to keep him was to transition him into an outside kitty, which we did got 6 months. Until the neighbors complained that he was terrorizing their cats. Sigh... So once again we worked on transitioning him into a 100% indoor kitty, which he'd never been. Needless to say, he wasn't a fan. 

I used to say that owning Titus was like having Stockholm Syndrome. He tormented you and held you captive but you still loved him.

He was absolutely fine until the very end. He was fat, ate a ton, used the litter box, jumped on laps, everything. Last Weds we caught him peeing on the door and we stuck him in the garage for a few days. He had a heated bed, down blanket and space heater in there, and I was sure he'd be warm enough. Friday morning I went to feed him and he was just laying on the cat bed. He looked a little lethargic but not sick. Friday night I mentioned to Kev that we should check on him and we didn't. I don't know if we would have been able to help or caught what was wrong in time but when we went into the garage on Saturday morning and saw that he'd passed away.

I always thought he'd outlive all of us. He'd be 35 years old and still wrecking havoc in the kitty nursing home. I thought that when he went he'd be found surrounded by empty bottles of booze, hookers and blow, or the cat equivalent.

Rest in Peace buddy, living with you was always an adventure. No matter how many cats we have in the future, there will never be another one like you. I hope you have lots of things to pee on and people to piss off in kitty heaven. We'll miss you T-man.