Monday, August 30, 2010

Kitchen Gadgets

A few weekends ago I picked up this Zoku popsicle maker at Williams-Sonoma. 

It makes popsicles before your eyes, in about 10 minutes.  What I love is that it fits well into my diet.  I can take fresh fruit like these peaches and plums, add a little Splenda, puree the entire thing, and have delicious summer treats in minutes. 

I can definitely recommend this product!  And there are so many fun ways to use it. I have made striped popsicles, and filled popsicles like the ones above.  Plus, watching them freeze right before your eyes is awesome.

(Disclaimer: I was not compensated in any way by the maker of the product or by Williams-Sonoma for this post.  I paid for the gadget the same way everyone else does.)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Nowhere Near Their Normal Size

The grapes are much smaller and less developed this year than they normally are.  The Bay Area is currently experiencing the coolest summer we have seen in 40 years.  The Napa Valley hasn't seen a day above 90 degrees and most have averaged in the 60s and 70s.  Most days have started out in the 40s.  This is making the grapes develop much more slowly than usual.  Hopefully they will ripen enough before the rains come.

(Note: After I wrote this post we had 3 consecutive days of above 100 temperatures.  Today could be day number 4.  Fantastic.)

Monday, August 23, 2010

Eighty Years

This video was my gift to my Grandma on her 80th birthday in July.  I told everyone I would share it with them, so here it is.

Friday, August 20, 2010


My Grandma recently came for a visit to celebrate her 80th birthday.  She and Arrow get along like peas and carrots and I love how this picture captures that.  

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


I'm going to point y'all to the pretty little button on the sidebar that says "Will blog for comments".  That's not a joke people.  Comments really give me a warm fuzzy feeling and show your support of the blog.  Thanks to all my frequent commenters!
Who ranks at the top? Debra, Fla.Remo.Gal, and Karen!
Thank you all!

My Birthday Weekend

I was lucky enough to be given the gift of a weekend at Millennium Towers in San Francisco.  The gift was from my parents and was a girl trip for me and my mom.  I knew that the apartment on the 47th floor would be nice, but I had no idea how nice it would be.  I guess the asking price of $2,000,000 should have been a clue. Here are a few pictures around the place.

And here are a couple of shots of the views.

My diet started to go out the window on Friday night when we went downstairs and had dinner at RN74.  The dinner was absolutely delicious and the atmosphere was rocking.  The food got even more scrumptious on Saturday night at Restaurant Gary Danko.  Sometimes it is all about who you know, and we are lucky to know Greg, chef Gary's partner.  He made the meal so special.  We started with champagne (and ended with champagne now that I think about it), we were brought caviar, and a full birthday cake.  I think he was trying to kill us with rich food.  I cannot speak highly enough of the restaurant, its staff, and Greg in particular.  

Saturday also saw us at the Ferry Building for Farmer's Market.  I have never seen a Farmer's Market that size and we found some pretty wonderful fresh produce. 

I really couldn't have asked for a more spectacular birthday.  Thanks to everyone who made it possible and to everyone who sent me birthday wishes! Now back to the diet, Ugh...

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Darkness Falls

Saturday, August 14, 2010

525,600 Minutes (Times 26)

Heather over at recently wrote a letter to herself for her birthday post and I found it so inspiring that I decided to do the same. The feeling I was going for when writing it was more "kick in the pants" than "schmultzy", so I apologize in advance. 

     I remember in 8th grade writing a letter to myself that I was supposed to open at High School graduation.  While this seems like a good idea, writing down your hopes and dreams, I think it would have been more useful and theraputic to write to my past self.  To tell that 8 or 10 or 14 year old version of myself that everything is going to be okay.  So that's what I'm doing right now. 

Dear Meghan,

     Today you turn 26 years old.  That 312 months.  1352 weeks.  9490 individual days.  I know that some weeks feel like they are 9490 days long, but they really aren't.  That number, 9490, seems impossibly low.  How can your life fit into such a number?  The answer is that it can't.  No matter how hard you keep trying, your life experiences cannot be neatly packaged and categorized.  Life is a series of moments that don't know what a clock is and don't give a shit.

    Meg, you have been through more crap in your relatively short life than many other people.  On the other hand, it is important to remember that your life has been full of unicorns and rainbows compared to the lives of some others.  You've put in more hours of therapy than many people will in a lifetime.  And now you realize that this is not something to be ashamed of.  You've taken all the shit life and brain chemistry have thrown at you and chose the hard route, the route of working through it instead of hiding.  That's a spectacular quality.  A quality that led you to study Psychology and learn about yourself and people like you.  And just now it occurred to you that it was an amazing choice.  JUST NOW!  Why didn't you give yourself more credit and respect?

    You, the girl who lived in the same house for 17 years, went to the same school for 8, then to the High School that was expected, you made a change.  You pushed aside your own self imposed expectations and changed schools.  You went from the "best" school to the "less than" school in your mind.  It turns out that they both gave you equally amazing educations and that the "less than" school was just as academically challenging, but in a better environment...without the nuns.  Then, on your 17th birthday, you moved from your only home to a new one 1700 miles away in a place you knew nothing about and where you knew no one.  You had to completely reinvent yourself and make new connections during your Senior year of High School, you know, because you didn't have enough going on.  If I could give that 17 year old some advice it would be to CALM THE HELL DOWN!  Do you need AP credits, and the right connections and the right extracurricular activities to get into the "perfect" college so you meet the "perfect" guy and have the "perfect" family in a world made of kittens and sunshine? NO.  And don't think that this crusty 26 year old me knows it all.  Let me tell you that you will be working on this concept for a Very. Long. Time.

    Meghan, you have an amazing relationship with your parents and family in general.  And because of all the shit you have put each other through over the years, I think that deserves its own paragraph.

    You have a college degree, a job, and every day your basic needs are met, and then some.  So take a breath already.  In 10 years you will look back at me, the 26 year old version of your now much wiser self and want to slap me upside the head.  You will scream about how you just wanted time to rush by so that you could be older and have this in your past.  You will try to remember why it was so important to fulfill others' expectations.  But mostly, I hope you will just hug me and tell me that everything works out okay, because that's what we all really need. 

    So spend year 26 making memories that will still be clear when you are 86.  Reduce the 365 days of your 26th year into one day - today.


Friday, August 13, 2010

Party Time!

I'm leaving today for my birthday weekend trip to San Francisco.  I will have tons of photos to share when I get back.  In the meantime, here is Arrow ringing in the birthday season around here. 

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Arrow And I Made A Friend On Our Walk

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


Katie over at the Polka Dot Pig has outdone herself again and created this wonderful new blog design. Take a look around. So? Whaddaya think?

Quite A Few Years Ago Today

My Daddy-O was born.  Happy Birthday Popsicle!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Six Years Ago Today

Arrow was born.
Happy Birthday Noodle, Spaghetti-O, Monkey Man!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Back To School Time

The messenger bag is from the store at Sleep Talkin' Man.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Makes Me Feel Less Crazy

I didn't get enough comments of the "please don't tell the darning needle in the eye story" variety, so now I'm sharing.  The story was told in my Abnormal Psychology class by one of my favorite professors.  This professor brought in a former FBI profiler to walk us through actual crime scene photos and profile the killer.  The profiler said I had a knack for it, then she broke my heart and said that the FBI usually wants people who are about 30 with life experience, not right out of college.  I'm not going to lie, I still have profiling in the back of my mind as a possible profession later in life.  Anyway, you came here for a needle story, so here it goes. 

My professor was working in the Psychiatric wing of a hospital when she got a call from a nurse in the Emergency Room asking her to come down ASAP.  She walked into the waiting room of the ER and found a doctor handing out Valium to a patient's family.  That was her first sign that something bad was waiting for her behind the ER door.  She walked back into one of the curtain areas and found a 50-something woman with a darning needle sticking straight out of one eye.  Now, darning needles are not small, they are large, thick and curved.  My professor politely backed out of the room and asked the nurse something along the lines of "What the hell?".  The nurse explained that the needle-lady said that the needle was her beacon to the "others".  She needed the needle so they could communicate with her.  So my professor thought for a moment and asked the nurse for tin foil.  The nurse was all "tin foil?".  Yes, tin foil.  With tin foil in hand my professor fashioned 2 hats complete with antennae.  She put one on her own head and brought the other one to the needle-lady.  She explained to Crazy that the needle-in-the-eye was like, so last week and that the "others" were now communicating via tin foil hats.  Needle lady was all, thank heavens for you, I'll just take this needle out now.  NO! How about we let the doctor do that? The doctor was able to remove the needle with no damage to the woman's vision, just a nasty black eye.  My professor then walked the woman back to the psych ward, both sporting their new beacon hats.  This proved two of her important theories of psychology: 1) Think on your feet and 2) If you can't beat 'em, join 'em.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Bird Bath