Wednesday, November 30, 2005

All I Want For Christmas

Dear blog,
I know you must think that my recent lack of posts is a sign of my lost interest in you - by I urge you not to asume this. I still love you very much, I have just been VERY busy. You don't realize the amount of time and effort that goes into posting you, and unfortunately for us both, that time has been purchased by others.
Yes dear blog, it is true I can be bought, but I am only using them to earn money for Christmas shopping. I will never care for them as I do you.

In the past week I have been absorbed by numerous jobs; Brad and I have nearly completed a
new website, I have returned to work at Public where I have been slaving to update their website, and I am also in the midst of another job for this website. I long for those leisurely days when I can spend my time contemplating the vocablulry with which I craft you. Those days are near, for soon we will be together again. Wait for me, blog. I will return to you and we will once again create glorious memories.

All my love,

Da Bomb

The problem with having too much work to do is not only that I do not have time to write posts, it is that I do not have time to peruse and absorb information from the internet to fuel the content of my blog posts. During busy weeks there is little room inside my brain in waking hours for much more than work, work, work, schedules, meals and dog walks. Current events and useless nonsense alike pass by without my being aware.

In addition, the approach of Chrsitmas has created yet another obstruction. It seems that I spend the few precious moments of internet time browsing for gifts. I know I am too old to write a list for Santa, but that doesn't mean I can't write a list for Brad. Luckily(?), we both have this little addiction called shopping, and what better way to exercise it than buying gifts for each other!

While at work, we often email back and forth with links to interesting Times articles, random tidbits and occasionally, cool things to buy. However, in recent days there has been some not-so-subliminal gift hinting in these correspondances.

It all started the other day when Brad sent me several links to some old-school Atari game consoles, saying "Aren't these cool? And they're only $25!" Translation: "You should make a note of these links because I want one for Christmas!" I retaliated with a less subtle suggestion, "These are some of my favorite sites to browse for cool stuff." Translation: "You can't go wrong if you buy me lots of stuff from these websites." Finally, Brad responded at the end of the day with the link to his new Amazon wishlist. No translation needed. Let the shopping begin!

Saturday, November 26, 2005

How Big Was Your Bird?

Because ours was a whopping 24 pounds!

Now it wasn't supposed to be so large when I reserved it from the Garden of Eve this past September. I was expecting a 12-14 pound Broad-Breasted bronze turkey raised on the farm, but when we picked the bird up last weekend, we were informed that they had grown a lot faster than expected.


11pm Thaksgiving Eve

8am Thanksgiving

4pm Thanksgiving


Brad and I have successfully roasted our first Thanksgiving turkey and it was deeeelicious! Complete with gravy (which was described as "liquid silk", thank you very much!) cornbread and sausage stuffing and cranberry chutney, the monster turkey was enjoyed in the company of several of our friends –
Christine (and her parents from Washington state), Megan and Josh – with whom we planned a joint feast.

The menu will make your mouth water:

Mushroom and leak turnovers
Green salad with pomagranite seeds and vinagrette
Fruit salad
Roasted green beens with prociutto
Brussel sprouts with hasel nuts
Cranberry chutney
Free-range, pasture-raised turkey
Rich gravy
Cornbread and sausage stuffing
Mashed potatoes
Sweet potatoes
Pumpkin pie
Pecan pie
and, last but NOT least . . . Chipotle ice cream

Mmmm, mmmmm, mmmmmm. I think Thanksgiving has officially topped the list as my favorite holiday of the year . How wonderful it is to spend a whole week planning and cooking for a holiday which you celebrate by sitting down and eating a huge feast! Brad and I had a great time roasting our turkey together and were certainly rewarded for our culinary efforts. As we went arround the Thanksgiving table saying our thanks, friends in company who can cook (!) was a big one.

Oh, and the eating isn't even over yet. We've got leftovers we'll be enjoying for days and turkey soup in the works. Yummy :)

Monday, November 21, 2005

One Crazy Week

I know I said five days and it has been much longer than that. My mother-in-law sent me a "you need to post a new blog" reminder email a few days ago and has probably been sweating it out ever since. But, I'm back now, after one crazy week.

9 days ago, Friday morning Brad and I were scheduled to fly out of Laguardia Airport at 9am for a long weekend in Santa Fe. Unfortunately at about 1pm that afternoon, this is is part of a correspondance that took place between myself and my friend Julia, who I was looking forward to spending time with in SF :

Subject: You won't be suprised by this :)

Date: November 11, 2005 1:24:36 PM EST


Ok, so I should be on a flight to Denver right now, but instead I am at home writing you this email. This morning, Brad and I headed off to the airport at 9:30 for our 9:00am flight that I mistakenly thought was at 11:00am (those itineraries are so jumbly!) So . . . now we don't get up to Santa Fe until midnight tonight - assuming we can get on the 5:30pm flight standby when we go back to the airport:) I am panicking about being able to spend time with friends because I'm booked to teach all day everyday I am there, blah, blah, blah! . . .


Subject: Re: You won't be suprised by this :)

Date: November 11, 2005 1:32:32 PM EST


At least you didn't lock your keys in a running airplane.

Yep, that's right, we missed our plane because at 1am the night before I misread the itinerary that I booked! And that was just the start . . . When we finally arrived in Albuquerque that Friday night at midnight, we picked up our rental car and less than five minutes away from the airport, blew out a tire driving 70 miles an hour in the center lane of Route 25. (We made them bring us a new car!) Over the next three days I spent 14 hours in the dance studio choeographing 2 entire dances onto my old students from Charisma dance studio, Brad's parents came with friends to visit us, Brad worked on a cartoon network job on his laptop in our hotel room during the "spare" time, and I tried to visit with friends. On the fourth day we made a decision that we weren't ready to travel home yet, added an extra day onto the trip, and subjected ourselves to a whole other day (starting at 5am) of flying standy.

Don't get me wrong, it was a fun trip - and we even got a hike in! Of course we had another day or two of jumping right back into life in NYC as soon as we got back, one day late. However, this Mornday morning, things have finally settled back to a sort of calm and I am blogging again. Hoorah!

Here are some photos of myself as the dance director, and my students rehearsing their new pieces:

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Someone Farted in the Laundromat

As Brad can attest, I hate doing laundry. It is one of the two chores I fear, the other being dishes. But, because we are traveling to Santa Fe tomorrow and Brad has taken care of the delicates more than once on his days off, today I stepped up to the task.

While I was sitting there, reading my most recent issue of Print and waiting for the dryers to buzz, a couple came in giggling and sorted there laundry right next to me. A moment later I looked up to see they were gone and realized I had been left in a fart.

Up until that moment there were 2 things that were making the laundry errand bearable to me. Next to the dryers it was warm (and almost cozy on a cold day like to day) and it smelled like FABRIC SOFTENER
– an odor I would perfume myself with if I could. And so, you can understand why I was particularly offended by such behavior; the laundromat smelled like ass for the next five mintues.


Tomorrow morning we head to Santa Fe for a long weekend during which I will teach a 3-day day workshop for my teen students there at Charisma Dance Studio. Brad and I will also be eating green chilli, enjoying the big blue skies, and deciding whether or not we want to relocate back to our former home from Brooklyn, where we now reside.

Our dog Francine, will be staying with my friends Sara and Steve, who are watching her as a trial run to see if they want a dog themseves. I have to admit I fear that in our absense Francine will act out in rotten, evil ways we have never seen and the two of them will never want to speak to me again after I pick her up next tuesday. But it is likely she will just sleep like she usually does for 90% of the time we are gone. I have been mentally composing the note I will give them with Francine and her belongings that tells them "How to Take Care of My Dog", as neither of them have ever cared for any dog, to my knowledge. I also fear that the note will be overly detailed and make me appear to be a dog-obsessed lunatic. Yet another risk I will have to take.

It is unlikely I will blog over the next 5 days, unless I steal a few mintues on Brad's laptop. So, in order to get you though the impending lapse, I leave you with two soup recipes that have been getting Brad and I through this Fall. Both of these soups are easy, almost fool-proof and deeeeelicious!

Tomato Soup

4 cups chopped tomatoes (preferable seeded although not necessary)

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 red onion, chopped

4 cups chicken broth

1.5 teaspoon cloves

course ground sea salt and fresh ground pepper

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons flour

1-2 tablespoons sugar

In a stockpot combine tomatoes, garlic, onion, broth, cloves and generously salt and pepper. Boil gently over medium-low heat for about 30 minutes to combine the flavors.

Strain all the liquid from the mixture and set aside. Blend remaining until very smooth.

Heat butter over low heat until melted and quickly wisk in flour to form a golden roux. Add a ladel full of reserved liquid to prevent from burning or sticking and continue to wisk so no clumps form. Add remaining liquid and bleded mixture. Stir to blend and heat gently through.

Eat and enjoy!

I like to serve with cheese toasts. Use slices of crusty bread topped with slices of asiago cheese, salt and pepper and broil for about 5 minutes until crispy and golden.

Split Pea Soup

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 cups chopped onion

2 cups chopped carrot

2 cups finely chopped celery

2 cloves minced garlic

2 cups split peas (I use one green and one yellow)

8 cups chicken broth

1 teaspoon coarse salt

1 teaspoon coarse ground pepper

1. Heat olive oil in a large stock pot over medium heat. Cook onion, carrot and celery until onion
is translucent.

2. Stir in peas, broth, salt and pepper. Cover, bring to a boil, then reduce heat. Simmer for 2½ hours
and stir frequently.

3. Puree in a food processor, return to pot to heat through.

4. Serve, top with some croutons and enjoy!

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Over-the-Counter Tranquilizers

Everybody knows that babies are cute and cuddly. From what I understand, once you enter into the second half of your twenties, babies are also supposed to make your biological clock start talking, saying things to your brain like, "Hey! Don't you want one of those?!" My brain however, tends to say things like, "Hell, no! Turn and walk in the other direction as fast as you can!"

******For either of my mothers that may be reading this right now. Have no fear; deep down inside I like babies. Of course I want babies - well maybe small children would be better if I could get one like that. Just don't expect them ANY time soon.

Anyway, two weeks ago Brad and I were at the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum where two children were running through the exhibition, touching things that were not meant to be touched (if you can't read the signs that say "do not touch" then you are obviously to young to be there) and yelling to their parents. I found myself wondering angrily if there was not a height requirement for admission. Later, when a different child was writhing around on the floor of the museum design shop, where Brad and I were browsing, and screaming for his mother's attention (which she was denying him) I had to flat out resist the urge to strangle them both. First child, for the sake of quiet, and then mother for not only bringing her child, but even worse, for not supervising it in a place it doesn't belong.

Seriously, I don't think six year olds can really grasp the significance of textile advancement.

If you're wondering what might have spawned this tirade, it was this article in the Times, which I found to be quite humorous. Bet you can guess whose side I'm on. I'd like to be there when one of these mothers (who thinks they should be able to bring their ill-behaved children anywhere, and feel their parenting is being insulted by business owners trying to preserve the sanctity of quiet adult-only environments)
seeks refuge in a cappuccino and a book at a peaceful coffee shop when their kids are with a babysitter – but can't enjoy it because some brat is running circles around and bumping into their table, slowly spilling their overpriced, yet luxuriously satisfying coffee drink all over the table.

Of course it is likely that karma will return to bite me in the ass and I will one-day breed the most monstrous little heathens you could ever imagine. But, in the mean time, when my already unpleasant morning commute is made nearly intolerable by the sound of a wailing toddler who's parents are just giggling and cooing at it as if they can't figure what their little demon ate that morning to make him behave so unusually bad, I think I have every right to seek sanity in imagining myself turning around and sticking my fingers into all six of their inconsiderate eyeballs. (Ok, that was harsh)


I know a joke that will always make Brad laugh. It goes, "Hey, want to have a baby?" It is especially funny if I say this while scowling at three grown-ass adults all babbling, in some weird, high-pitched, made-up language that they seem to believe only babies can understand (uh, wrong!), to a small child who is not making eye contact or reacting to any of them.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Heartbreaking Loss

The Dark Rainbows lost the championship game. It was an admirable fight and and we lost by only one goal scored within the last minute of the game.

War paint, team spirit and all, the Rainbows finished second place in the league and took home the "We Are Family" award. Last year we finished third, so one can only hope we are on our way up. We REALLY wanted it this season, but we now have a goal for next - championship.

In other news, I'm not feeling so hot these days. Many people have worked sick around me over the past few weeks, and I fear my immune system has finally had it. So, while I am sipping on tea and Emer'gen-C, here is a cool article from the Times
on a design rockstar, Chip Kidd, for your reading pleasure.

Also, this recipe (an old favorite of mine, courtesy of Beth Sugarman) warmed our broken little Rainbow hearts last night. It's a delicious fall treat.

Curried Squash & Mushroom Soup

2 medium acorn or 1 butternut squash (I use butternut)
2 ½ cups water or stock
1 cup orange juice
2 Tbl. Butter or margarine
½ cup chopped onion
1 medium clove crushed garlic
6 oz. mushrooms, sliced mushroom (I use 10 oz. pkg. & peel them)
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. dry mustard
1 ¼ tsp. salt (I use less)
a few dashes cayenne
optional: fresh lemon juice

Serve with yogurt &/or chopped almonds.

Bake squash 375’ oven on a foil-covered tray until soft and pierces easily with a fork. (This can be done days in advance, just refrigerate till ready to make soup.) Cool, scoop out the insides. You need about 3 cups worth. Put in blender with water/stock and puree till smooth –or mash with potato masher. Combine with orange juice in a pot.

Heat butter and add garlic, onion, salt and spices in a skillet. Saute until the onion is very soft – add a little water if it sticks. Add mushrooms, cover and cook 10 minutes.

Add the saute’ to the squash, scraping the skillet well to salvage all the good stuff. Heat everything together very gently. Taste to correct seasoning. You may want more cayenne or salt or lemon (I add the lemon & cayenne when I serve it.)

Can serve immediately or simmer a while and the flavors will mature.
Freezes well.

YUM! YUM! Enjoy! With love, Beth

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

And The Marketing Goes On

What a morning . . . Nothing like a fire to stir up my repressed fear of disater in New York City.

It just so happens that I had to come in to work ( at the agecy I am currently employed by) early to crank out materials for a 1pm marketing presentation. Everything seemed normal, including the subway train delay as I made my way from Brooklyn across 14th street to the end of the L line. But when the train doors opened in the station, I stepped out into clouds of smoke. There was no chaos, no police, only other people like me, covering there mouths and noses leaving only the fright in their eyes exposed.

I could only assume that there had been some small fire in the train station, hence the delay, but when I stepped out onto 14th street into a black sky, I realized I was wrong. Funny how something like this had the ability to make me feel a sadness and fright that I try so often to avoid. I am the first one to ask that people quit playing the 9/11 card, wishing it could just become a part of the past once and for all. However, I couldn't stop some memories of that day from flooding into my mind as I walked to work, into progressively smokier air. There was something hauntingly familiar about the way people were looking each other in the eye, walking to their destinations, not knowing what else to do when they know something bad is happening that can't be help by them.

I must have had coversations with at least three different strangers, all seaking some comfort in speaking to others who were also confused and helplessly scared. I finally arrived at my destination to find a watchful crowd and twenty or more fire trucks. The parking garage next strore to the building I am working in was a cloud of smoke. From the windows of the office I am now in, which is also filled with smoke, I watched three firemen side-by-side on ladders, spraying water into third floor windows from which flames were leaping. The roof had caught fire by then too.

To be honest, I have been here nearly an hour now, and I don't know if the fire is out. I had to return to my desk. Despite the fact that the smoke in the air I am breathing is worsening, the marketing must go on. Two hours and counting until the presentation materials are due - too little time for anyone to care that my eyes and the back of throat are starting to burn. I don't think I am wrong to be a little worried . . .


I have just had my faith in the humanity of the marketing and advertising industry restored a bit. I am being sent home to work from there (yipee!) because it might not be good for me to sit here and inhale burning cars and rubber all day.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Desperate Thieves

Today is first day of November, which makes today the two month anniversary of this blog. WhooHoo!

Yesterday was Halloween, that wonderful holiday celebrated with costumes and candy. Brad and I did our Halloweening last Friday at or friends' party, which we attended as burglars. Check out how scary we were:

Last week I thought that the party would be enough to satisfy our costume cravings, but I couldn't help but feel a little sad last night. As I left work in the West Village and Halloween parade-goers in costume walked past me, I found myself wishing we had planned for some Halloween spirit on the actual day . . . Luckily, there is a new guilty pleasure in our house that quickly replaced my sadness; Desperate Housewives.

I don't even want to get started on this one, I am hooked so hard. But, let's just say that as someone who is consistantly pulling a low C to D for time-management, Desperate Housewives has left me dangerously teetering on the edge of an F for this week. What can you do though? It's so good!

So, with Halloween past, and fall undoubtedly surrounding us, I am already looking ahead to winter and wonder what it might bring. Change is in the air for Brad and I and only time will tell the direction we choose.

Stay tuned for Novemeber!

This is me dancing with a horse head on: