Monday, April 30, 2012

My Mission

I was pretty pumped when I found out that I could turn this blog into a keepsake book for myself. I don't know exactly how much it costs given that I have 149 posts and some of them are pretty lengthy, but I think it'll be pretty awesome just to have documentation of this time in my life before the big move and next chapter in Colorado. Technically, I did originally start this blog as a sort of online scrapbook for myself of all my trips and stories and ideas.  This post may be more for my own personal interest, unless you're also interested in looking at old, cool looking buildings in which case, you're in the right spot.

I have 2 and a half weeks left to make some pretty careful decisions about what I want to put in my first blog book. I was thinking I'll post a few more California memories, baby beginnings, favorite crafts and recipes.

So.

Since I've been on such a kick about getting up to LA to visit the Missions, I've decided to post the last of my pictures from the Missions I've already seen. No. I'm not a crazy church lady (not that there is anything wrong with being one, mind you) it's just that religion aside, the architectural designs alone on these buildings are so beautiful, I've made it a goal to see all 22 of them at some point before I kick the bucket.

I started looking through pictures and I totally forgot that I had already been to the one in San Gabriel. I was about 8 months pregnant and pregnesia must have kicked in.


 The street in front of this mission is lined with tiles made from local kids. This particular one of El Pollo Loco was my favorite.


I also found a handful of pictures of the San Luis Rey de Francia in Oceanside, CA from early 2007. 





And although I've been to the Mission in San Juan Capistrano the most and have hundreds of pictures,  I'm posting the most recent visit in September of 2011. 








Monday's Grooveshark playlist:
Long Monday – John Prine
Monday Morning – Fleetwood Mac
Blue Monday – Little Milton
They Call It Stormy Monday - Earl Hooker
Monday Monday Monday – Tegan and Sara
Rainy Days and Mondays – The Carpenters
Rainy Monday – Shiny Toy Guns
Duran Duran – New Moon on Monday
Blue Monday – New Order
Monday Monday – Mama’s and the Poppas
Manic Monday – The Bangles
Come Monday – Jimmy Buffet
I don’t like Monday’s -  The Boomtown Rats

Sunday, April 29, 2012

A Bunch of Hot Guys

I was asked a couple of days ago why I've never posted a blog about my abundance of boyfriends.

So today I shall.

A whole blog devoted to the loves of my fictional life.

This post has absolutely nothing informative on it at all, just pictures of hot guys. So if you're looking for a recipe or a story or whatever else, you should probably move along to a different page.

Now, that being said, come ladies... come take a stroll with me down Beautiful Boulevard.

First and foremost, my oldest boyfriend: Sir Paul McCartney
He's my oldest because of age, but also oldest as in my longest. We've been in fictional love since I was a little girl when my mom used to play me his records. He was my very first ever live concert. I was 9.

Paul McCartney www.thebrighterwriter.blogspot.com

I actually have a couple of dead boyfriends. 
Number 1: The King. Duh. 
Elvis Presley www.thebrighterwriter.blogspot.com

And number 2: River Phoenix. Double duh. 
River Phoenix www.thebrighterwriter.blogspot.com

My Movie Boyfriend: Timothy Olyphant. Ok so yes he's been married for 21 years and has 3 gorgeous children but, that just makes him even hotter. Nothing is sexier than a family man. Nothing. 
Timothy Olyphant www.thebrighterwriter.blogspot.com

Since he's the least known of all my boyfriends, I'll include this YouTube clip of the first time I ever laid eyes on him as Todd Gaines in the 1999 movie "Go."

My Policeman boyfriend: Sting. Anyone who can write songs in compound time 9/8 is pretty hot in my book. Try tapping your foot in time with "I Hung My Head" sometime (not the Johnny Cash version) Talk about irresistibly genius...
Sting www.thebrighterwriter.blogspot.com

And last but certainly not least, my TV boyfriend: Joel Mchale. Yes, another tame family man (seeing a pattern here?). His cynical humor and his unrealistically perfect arms make me want to barf. In a good way.  
Joel McHale www.thebrighterwriter.blogspot.com

So there you have it. My list. You're welcome. 

The honorable mention is my deaf composer boyfriend. Any guesses?

And Also, here's your Sunday Grooveshark Playlist:

Sunday Bloody Sunday – U2
Sunday Morning Come Down – Johnny Cash
Pleasant Valley Sunday – The Monkees
Everyday is like Sunday – Morrisey
Sunday – Nick Drake
Sunday  - Sonic Youth
Sunday Papers – Joe Jackson
Lazing on a Sunday Afternoon – Queen
Lazy Sunday – The Small Faces
Sunny Sunday – Joni Mitchel
Sunday Girl – Blondie
On Sunday – Til Tuesday

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Creamy Alfredo Chicken And Artichoke Lasagna

Today was "Mystery Meal" day on the menu planner so...



Dude.

Seriously.

This has got to be the most unhealthy thing I have ever cooked. I could feel the hail damage pelting into my ass cheeks with every delicious and savory bite. So, I mean, whatever. I'll just add a couple miles to my run and I'll feel way better about it. I'm just here to warn you, eat at your own cholesterolical risk. Yes, I just made that word up. But it's sooooo gooooooood!

Also, before I go any further, allow me to explain the green tint on my photos. I'm not exactly sure what happened. I was snapping pics with my iPhone as I went along and didn't actually look at them until dinner was over and the food was gone. So there were no options of re-takes. Just imagine in your head that these pictures are regular colored and have trust in me that they were in real life as well. Nothing was tinted green that we ate. I promise.

Ok, lets get started!


Ingredients:
2 cups boneless skinless chicken breast, cooked and shredded
1 can (14 oz.) artichoke hearts, chopped
1/2 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes
1 pkg. (8 oz.) shredded Mozzarella Cheese
1/2 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
1 cup milk
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 cup basil, chopped
12 lasagna noodles, cooked


Combine chicken, artichokes, tomatoes, 1 cup mozzarella and Parmesan.




Beat cream cheese, milk, and garlic powder with mixer until well blended; stir in 2 Tbsp. basil.




Mix half of cream cheese mixture with the chicken mixture.



Spread half of the remaining cream cheese sauce onto bottom of 13×9-inch baking dish; cover with 3 noodles and 1/3 of the chicken mixture.




Repeat layers of noodles and chicken mixture twice. Top with remaining cheese sauce and mozzarella; cover. Bake on 350ยบ for 25 minutes or until heated through. Sprinkle with remaining basil.




Also, as I promised, Here is your Saturday Grooveshark Playlist:



Saturday Morning Fever - Loudon Wainwright
Saturday’s Child – The Monkees
Saturday Nite - Earth, Wind & Fire
Saturday In The Park - Chicago
Saturday Night's Alright For Fighting - Elton John
Saturday Night - Bay City Rollers
Another Saturday Night - Cat Stevens
The Heart Of A Saturday Night - Tom Waits
Saturday Sun - Nick Drake
Saturday Night - Blitzen Trapper
Saturday - Built To Spill
Saturday morning - The Eels

Friday, April 27, 2012

Grooveshark



Here we are. Right smack in the middle of an age where every single thing has to cost an absolute arm and a goddamn leg. Gas, food, housing, education, health care, even my gum balls cost 50¢ now in the little spiral machines instead of a simple quarter. Having to pay $1.29 on iTunes for a song instead of 99¢ drives me up the wall for some stupid reason. Don't they know I have playlists to construct?
Well, I have fallen cranium over Converse for a website called Grooveshark. It's free. As in, keep your arms and goddamn legs. You make an account, and you have access to whatever you want. Store what you listen to, or don't. Make playlists or listen randomly. Upload your own music or choose something new to stream. Your choice. Bizillions of artists and songs. Just pick them, and listen to them. Pretty simple.
I do love me a little Pandora every now and then if I'm in the mood to surrender my mood. But generally speaking, I have a hard time relinquishing control. I like to know what's happening next. With everything, not just music (hence the reason I can't watch thriller movies).  I'm not a giant fan of surprises.

Now.

As a general rule, I don't do a lot of research on my blogs. Clearly. I just ramble about whatever I feel the need to on that particular day whether it's a recipe or a craft or a story or a whatever what-have-you. However, the playlists I've been in the process of making I. Have. Done. My. Research. I have listened to  just about every song that has ever been written about days of the week. I wanted a playlist (don't ask me why because I have no idea) for Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and last but not least, sad little under appreciated Sunday. I think I've finally finished. So for the next 7 days, I'm going to post my playlist for that day at the bottom of my blog. Today is Friday, so therefore, you'll be getting my Friday mix.

There are some obvious gaps in my playlists. I'm sure I'm missing a handful of the most popular songs ie: Ruby Tuesday -  Rolling Stones or T.G.I.F - Katy Perry (NOT that I'm comparing the two) and those aren't on there just because they aren't particularly my cup of tea. Not to say you shouldn't add them to your own Grooveshark playlist if that's the kind of thing that blows your skirt up, (or pulls your zipper down) I actually have a few titles on my lists that I wouldn't listen to on a normal basis but for the purposes of finishing off a Friday mix, I don't mind a little Flogging Molly. See what I'm saying here? I absolutely don't think all of you will have my taste in music. Hell, I don't even like my taste in music sometimes. But just in case you do: High Five!

So here you have it. Day 1 of my 7 day playlist. My very favorite songs about Friday.

Get Grooveshark. Make playlists. Do it. It'll improve your quality of life.


Friday On My Mind - The Easybeats
Friday's Angels - Generation X
Friday - Sunny Day Real Estate
Friday I’m in Love – The Cure
Friday Night (Hundred Dollar Bill) - G. Love and Special Sauce
Friday Street - Paul Weller
Friday Night -  The Specials
Black Friday Rule – Flogging Molly
Friday Night On A Dollar Bill - Huelyn Duvall
Friday's Child - Nancy Sinatra
Friday the 13th - Sonny Rollins


If you'd like to follow me, you can find me HERE
If you'd like to VOTE for my blog on topbabyblogs.com click HERE

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Moon Sand

Yes I played hooky yesterday with the blog and went to Disneyland. Big Whoop. 

So anyway, 


I'm not exactly sure what it is about me that feels the need to make things at home that I can can buy at the store, but I do. I mean, with kid's busy toys, not like clothes or anything. I'm not a hippy or an 80 year old. 

Anyway, I saw a recipe on Pinterest for some moon sand and I wanted to try it out. That was a couple of hours ago and Kalynn is still outside with it as I'm typing this to all of you. So it works. 

It's pretty simple. 4 cups sand, 2 cups corn starch, 1 cup water. I actually halved that and it's plenty. We walked over to the park across the street, grabbed a couple of cups worth of dirty playground sand, (because I think it's stupid to buy sand at Home Depot or wherever else. I mean if you're going to do that, you might as well just buy the moon sand from the store in the first place) came home, mixed it up, poured it out on her magnet tray and added in a handful of toys. Now, here we are half a morning and one pot of coffee later in blissful, filthy handed, harmony.  

 Obviously, you can play around with the recipe to make it more or less slimy, depending on your desired consistency. 

  
(Pure and total concentration)


Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Water Balloons

Last week was hot. Today it's raining and the sky looks like baby elephant skin, but last week was hot enough to bust out some water balloons and cool off a little bit.

So, we did.

If you don't have one of these smart little gadgets to to make your water ballooning easier, I suggest you run right out and pick one up. Save yourself the psychotic episode that you are sure to have otherwise trying to fill them up on the sink faucet.





Here is a little 40 second clip of Kalynn's failure and overcoming triumph. 

Monday, April 23, 2012

Class of 1998 ROX!!

So I'm moving. I'm not just moving down the street or across town, I'm moving to an entire new state. This requires some downsizing. Clearly. I wouldn't (others might) say I'm necessarily a "pack rat," but the things with severe sentimental value (anything Star Wars related), I have a hard time throwing away. That being said, I do cut down my bullshit every time I move. I really do. And it's time to go through some boxes and see what golden gems I've had hiding away in the garage. 

What's that? What was in the first box I pulled down this morning you ask? Well, that's a great question. It just so happened to be my high school keepsake box. HOLY HELL. HOLY HELL!

I totally remember when I was that kid walking around the halls of Washburn Rural High School rocking my converse with too much eye liner on. I remember sneaking into the parking lot to smoke cigarettes and listening to the Violent Femmes in my best friend's Geo Tracker. I remember skipping class and hanging out in the lunch room so I could stare at my skater boy crush. I remember trying way too hard to be too cool for school. Ah, those were the days! 

Well here we are 14 years later and all I have to show for it is what's left in this box. This glorious box of treasure that I figured I'd share with all of you in hopes of giving you a nice smile on this dreary Monday afternoon. I'll spare you the entire contents, but I'll give you a handful of my favorites. 

Music was pretty much a vital part of my existence from the very beginning. As it is with most rebellious teens I suppose. So, of course, I kept all my favorite box sets. 

My Case Logic CD holders filled with over 50 discs of The Cure and imported Robert Smith stuff. And another in equal size of Tori Amos. 

My beloved notebook where I jotted down all my teenage angst and love stories, along with a copy of the Plethora Literary Magazine that I was featured in. (Seriously, could I be any more nerdy??)

My Darth Vader piggy bank

My Nintendo, complete with games, controllers and Duck Hunt gun


And last but not least, just for your afternoon laughter and enjoyment, I scanned my class picture from 1996.
(P.S. I have Logan Reynolds to blame for this hair cut he gave me)

I hope I was able to shine some light with my geeky flashback on your case of the Mondays. 

L8R SK8R
LYLAS 4-EVA

Still rock my khakis with a cuff and a crease (fo sho)
Still got love for the streets, repping two one three (fo life)
Still the beats bang, still doing my thang

Sunday, April 22, 2012

The Wheel of Wellness

I was reading a blog this morning about motivation and it got me thinking about my own.
Motivation to be healthy, on all levels, is easy to bypass. Especially when you go about your routine and don't take some time to really think about how things are effecting you.
On the blog there was a link posted to the National Wellness Organization with a model of the 6 Dimensions of Wellness. I guess it sort of took me aback just because I had never really thought about there being any kind of components to being "well." But apparently there are: occupational, physical, social, intellectual (ironically, it took me 3 tries to get that spelled right), spiritual and emotional. In order for your clock to run smoothly, you need equal well parts of those things in the relationship you have with yourself. Basically.

Interesting.

So I kept reading.

The Wheel of Wellness www.thebrighterwriter.blogsot.com


I suppose what I got from it was that I need to be more self aware. After all, if I spend every second of every day looking after someone else and giving her what she needs and wants, that's not really leaving much time to do the same for myself.
Which makes sense. When my environment isn't well, neither are my emotions. When my spiritual life is perfectly in tune, most of my other dimensions follow suit accordingly.

So today I'm making a commitment to get all my dimensions up to par so they can all function properly in this massive brain of mine (Herman's Head episode anyone?) projecting the best possible Me I have to put forward.

My point from all of this rambling? read THIS article. And then think about carrying it out in your own life. I bet it can't hurt, right?

Herman's Head www.thebrighterwriter.blogspot.com