Monday, November 29, 2010

Tales of Bravery

I left off on Saturday, so let me tell you about the rest of my weekend, since I know you're ENTHRALLED.  Saturday I slept in, finally, as I'd thought I'd lost the ability.  Then up for some coffee and cereal, then a big shopping excursion to Steinway Street in Astoria.  I bought two dresses and a top cheaply from the discount store on the way (Famous Brands) and then hit up one of those shoe/purse/jewelry stores to stock up on 50% discounted costume necklaces and earrings, as well as find a new purse.  I'd just bought a cheap one recently from Rainbow that I liked, but the lining was falling apart after less than a month, so I was on the hunt.  I spotted a Jessica Simpson bag (horror of horrors) that I really liked (not based on the designer) and it was 20% off, so I decided to "invest" and get a bag that should last for awhile.  Then I stopped at Victoria's Secret to use my $10 birthday month gift card and buy some good smelling bath stuff, then to Express to destroy their dress section.  I was so pleased after trying to find a birthday party dress at a billion stores last week -- they had such a selection!  And when I was heavier, I could never shop at Express, since I think their clothes are cut on the narrow, long side.  But GUESS WHAT, I can now!

While tallying up my purchases in my head, I called my mom to ask if she wanted to buy some of that stuff for me for my birthday, since I hadn't given her any ideas yet and we'd usually shop together on Thanksgiving weekend, anyway.  So it worked out well, as she agreed.  I bought one sexy bandage dress (in black) that's super tight up to the abdomen and then has a draped v-neck top, and then a color block one with a ruffled, army-green skirt and black tank top that I'll wear to my party, and then another more casual color-blocked one with a teal top and black skirt with pockets that was on sale.  Also, that was a size 2.  The black dress is an XS and the other is a 6!  I could've, possibly should've gotten the others a bit larger, but they didn't have any larger sizes and I actually think they look fine because of the cuts and stretchy fabric.  So that was fantastic, then I bought two slimming blouses I can wear to work (which will go great tucked into a pencil skirt) and then four pairs of tights.  Total score.  And I opened an Express credit card so I saved about $100 dollars.  Whew, shopping high!

Home for a bit, then I went to meet Schmannon and Schmeather at JJ's for sushi in Astoria.  It was delish and I gave them my turkey day(s) recap, and then we got some peanut butter hot chocolate from Il Bambino and headed to Shannon's to relax for a bit, then Schmeather and I took our leaves. (?)  I was home around 9, and it was great, as I was worn out from my spending.

Sunday I slept in again, then met up with Hike on the UWS and we went back to his brother's to watch the end of the Giants, game and the Knicks' game.  And they both won!  I'm no longer a jinx to his teams, which is good.  While there, Hike finalized his itinerary with me and bought his tickets to come to Toledo for New Year's!  He's going to come in the daytime on the 30th, and he'll be able to go to Britch's Scottish boyfriend's birthday party that night, and then our New Year's House Party on the 31st, and etc. until he leaves on Sunday.  I am so excited.

We left after the games to catch our 5 pm showing of 127 Hours, and good lord.  I was so scared, knowing the gore that was going to come, but the anticipation was actually worse than the fated scene.  (I won't say it here in case it's a spoiler.) I did not love the movie but I survived it, and then we went to Rosa Mexicano for some delicious Mexican goodness.  We had to wait awhile, so we had a cocktail at the bar and then finally go to our table.  We shared the guacamole (medium!) and a Budin de Pollo that I would have never ordered but loved, and then some crab empanadas (meh).


Wow, I feel rambly now.  I'm sleepy, and it's not even 10 pm!  Thank you for seeing me through the dark times, dear readers, and listening to my stream of consciousness.  Goodnight!

Thanksgiving Day the First

Good morning, angels.  I have tons of work to do today, but I feel like I want to start recapping this looong past weekend for you first.  I owe you that much, right?  We'll start with Wednesday and Thursday for this post.

So we finally had internet and functioning computers at work on Wednesday, which meant I was scrambling to pay the bills before the long holiday.  It was a good day, but I only barely unburied myself from my to-do list.  I left a few minutes before 5, as the office had pretty much cleared out and the big boss said I could.  I went home to drop off an Anne Taylor Loft bag I'd purchased in the afternoon (2 pairs of gray pants! 40% off!) then met Schmeather and Schmannon at Mad Donkey in Astoria.  It was fun and we were treated very well, as luckily for me, those ladies are good friends with the owner.  Hike came by later on as well, and got to meet his first few of my friends.  I think it went well, though some of us (ahem) had done more shots than others (not me this time!)  But everyone seemed to like each other and it was a very fun night.  Then we left at about 1 in the morning (possibly?) and went home. 

Thursday, off we went to Huntington Station, Long Island.  It was a wonderful Thanksgiving, and as I couldn't be home with my family, I had the next best option.  I felt very welcomed and loved and thankful and well-fed.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Disney Songs are Playing in My Head

Well, it's appropriate that I have Joan Holloway on a billboard outside of my office window, as we didn't have internet at work until today, and I felt like I was working in the 1960s.  (We also had to shut down the computers for long stretches so work could be done.  Don't ask me what.)  But that meant we had time to unpack most everything, which was a big relief, and now it means I'm scrambling to make up the computer work I couldn't do the past two days.  My big goal for tomorrow is to pay a giant stack of bills, but it should be quiet (famous last words) as most people are leaving to travel for Thanksgiving, so I'm optimistic.

The move went well, as you sort of know, and once I'm fully settled in I'm going to be really happy in my own office.  With, you know, guest chairs and a door and a window.  So thrilling.  I'm also going to bring in a lamp to set the mood.  Thanks for those extra lamps, HarperCollins.  (Mwa ha ha.)

Let's recap the weekend!  Friday night I was so loopy after the busy week with not much sleep.  I was talking to my mom on the phone and apparently not making much sense, as she said "Oh honey, go to bed.  You sound insane."  So yeah, I watched some Millionaire Matchmaker (UM, how cute is Caroline Manzo's older son from Real Housewives of NJ?) and then conked out around 10 pm...and woke up at 8:30 on Saturday.  I mean, that was a good amount of sleep, but I was hoping for more.  I had leisurely coffee, cleaned my room, and then got a mani/pedi.  I had a date planned with Hike for the evening, though I didn't know what our plans were, so I'd offered to go into the city to hang out with Schmillie for awhile and keep her company during a rough patch.  Turns out Hike had wanted to drive out to Long Island to a restaurant he loves, which is such a romantic idea, but I felt like I was needed in the friend department, so we postponed those plans until another time.  He was very understanding with me not being able to commit to a time or plan, and it worked out that I met up with him at 9 and saw his apartment and met his roommates.

So then we went to Mojave in Astoria, a spot I've been wanting to try for awhile.  It was really romantic with lots of low lighting, and the food was AMAZING.  We shared the Chicken Spinach Mole Enchiladas and a Blue Crab Quesedilla.  Then we went to this Czech bar across the street from his apartment and had two beers and just talked and got goofy and all that.  Sunday morning I lounged around here, gabbing on the phone to Britch (who is back in the States!) and Schmauren, and then went to see the new Harry Potter with my roommate and a friend.  It was good to see it, but man, they are killing me with this Ron and Hermione tension!  (That's not a spoiler, right?)  Then bed on the early side.

And then it's Thanksgiving!  I'm sad to miss my family's celebration for the first time, but I will be pretty distracted by the fun of spending the day with Hike and meeting his family.  (Now I just have to figure out what to wear.)  We're just going for the day, and we have plans to watch a Harry Potter movie marathon at some point during the weekend, too.

So right, I'm thankful for my life.  I'm thankful for loving friends who will listen to me yammer in the best and worst of times, for a fulfilling and rewarding job that doesn't require much extra-curricular effort (not counting last week), for a family that always lets me know how much I am loved and missed, and for God's incredible grace and generosity.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Move It or Lose It

Whew!  I am a normal person again after ten hours of sleep last night, and now I can tell you about my week.  Let's do it in bullets, shall we?  I love bullets.
  • Tuesday night was Harpie dinner, and the theme was Men.  I made pigs in a blanket with a delicious balsamic mustard dipping sauce (also with apple slices.)  We had this mustard at the beer pairing party, and I'm obsessed with it.  Try it.  Our main course was Manwiches (made by Schmate), prosciutto-wrapped asparagus bundles (which were p-in-v), and Tom Collinses to drink.  Our dessert bringer, the only actual man, couldn't make it at the last minute, which was sad.  But there were plenty of penis jokes without him.  I also had a minor Chrohn's situation, even though we didn't eat any cheese, so I have to rethink my theories about that.  Maybe the Harpies just cause an attack?
  • Wednesday I had to work from 8 until 7, and then because that meant no time to make dinner, my understanding and patient man brought over sushi and chicken udon at 8 pm.  We tried to watch Killers with Ashton and Katherine Heigl (hate), and it was awful.  
  • Thursday was the big move day.  I got in at 8:30 and then left from the new space at midnight.  It was such a strange day, because we were all packed and done by noon, and had pizza and a champagne toast at the old office.  Then one of the managing partners (the more fun one) and I walked to the new space and killed time, and then we met up with four of the lawyers (who were free after lunch) at The Ginger Man for two beers, then split up and I went back to the old space then the new one (I was just killing time, basically).  I met back up with the fun managing partner and we went for tapas and sangria for dinner (it was very romantic) and then back to the space to help answer layout questions as the movers delivered stuff.  It was a super long day, but parts were fun, and I had good bonding time with the boss.  I'm hoping they remember all this at bonus time this Christmas.  I was in bed around 1 am, and entirely dead on my feet.
  • Friday I was back at the office at 9 am, and it was mostly an unpacking day.  We had donuts for breakfast and pizza for lunch, and I was seriously loopy in the afternoon from exhaustion, but I felt like the move went well.  If they could just connect our internet (and e-mail), we'd be in business.  Friday evening I came home, watched Millionaire Matchmaker in bed until 10, then off to sleep until about 8:30 this morning.  I wish I could have slept in more, but I did sleep for a long time.  I may nap this afternoon, too, just because I still feel a little behind.  But much better today.
  • Side note:  I'm feeling Smee's total crush on me a bit more again, which is fine since he's not actually going to do or say anything about it, but I'm not sure if I should mention that I'm seeing someone.  I mean, it would be awkward to be like, Hey, just wanted you to know... but I also don't want him to think I'm single or think something may happen when I'm currently off the market.  I'll probably just leave it, but I somehow wonder if he should know.
I think that covers it. Anyway, I want to be more positive starting today, since I have the move stress lifted off my shoulders now, and a fancy new office with a window and mismatched wooden furniture, and a cute boyfriend.  Life is grand.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Baggage Check

But before we get into that, let's recap!  Friday night I was suddenly super exhausted after work, so I came home and climbed into bed to watch some Fringe until a reasonable bedtime (9ish, I think), take some sleeping pills, and conk (konk?) out.  Our receptionist at work has another cold, and I wanted to make sure my immune system was in fighting shape for this week's craziness.  I was up early on Saturday and managed to get some laundry done and relax before a monster nap again in the afternoon.  Saturday evening I met up with Schmillie to see Due Date, about which I'm still conflicted.  It was alternately hilarious, touching, disgusting and boring.  But it was definitely an interesting evening.  Also, we smuggled in Pret sandwiches and cider doughnuts from the farmer's market in Union Square.  So that was a score.  I was back in Astoria around 9, so I met up with Shmannon for a few beers and some surprisingly good live music at the hole-in-the-wall McLaughlin's on Broadway.  There were no shenanigans, though.  We were mature (because Shmannon made the call.)

Sunday I woke up and was very productive in giving my room a thorough cleaning (with vacuuming! and dusting!)  I texted with Schmillie for most of the afternoon, and then Hike called to solidify our meet-up plans -- 4 pm on the platform to head into the city early.  We got some food, nursed some beers (he only had one! I had two.  That's reasonable.) and watched the Giants be really disappointing.  But it was lovely.  And then over to MSG for the Knicks to be also disappointing.

This week will be crazy, too, so I wanted to post something up here while I could.  Work is all about the move, which happens Thursday evening, and I have Harpie dinner tomorrow night (theme: men.)  Wednesday I have book club and then Hike is coming over for dinner and a movie at my place, and then it's the BIG MOVE and then finally the weekend.

Friday, November 12, 2010

High in Sugar

As I've mentioned, this week is crazytown at work, but it's also had some highlights.  Tuesday night, the young female attorney here had won a free happy hour at The Public House, so we used that opportunity to celebrate our Goodbye to the East Side.  We drank fast and well, and I had four beers in an hour and a half, which got me good and drunk.  I cabbed it home and was in bed by 10:30, but yet still hungover the next day.  It's really a speed game, as evidenced by my slow burn last Saturday compared to Tuesday night.

Hike came over for dinner last night, and I made that Harvest Pizza from the Beer Pairing Party (since he didn't get to try it that day) with salad.  He thought the salad was delicious (it was just lettuce, yellow pepper, cuke, tomato, toasted pine nuts, and my special sauce) and the pizza was AMAZING, and we watched tv and hung out for the evening.

This weekend is about to begin.  Tonight I am exhausted after not sleeping well last night, and staying up past my bedtime anyway, so I will hopefully do some laundry and then just relax.  Tomorrow evening I have a movie date with Schmillie, then some 16 (Love) Handles fro yo, then home at a reasonable hour, and then Sunday evening is the Knicks game with Hike.  That should be a lot of fun, since he's a huge fan and super psyched about it.

And that's what's going on in my manic panic head today.  Happy weekend, lovers.

Brews & Bros

Wow, I've been silent.  I apologize.  Work has been crazy; they upgraded all of our computers and our server last weekend, so this week has been a mess of putting out fires and dealing with the move and ordering new furniture and insurance certificates for deliveries in the new building, etc., etc, etc.  I am a bit stressed but I feel that things are mostly under control, and it'll be nice to be done with the move and look AWESOME, but yeah, not so much playtime this week.

What can we catch up on?  Last weekend was great.  Friday evening I went over to Schmate's apartment for wine with the Munchers, since Schmauren was visiting from Boston.  It was a lovely evening of ladies, wine and cheese (these are a few of my favorite things), and then when Schmate's sisters arrived in town, the other three of us headed downtown for a few more beers, then Schmauren and I cabbed it back to my place, got giant sandwiches at the deli on the corner as well as delicious Dorito flavors and Cinnamon Bun Ben & Jerry's (best when eaten in the same mouthful as Sweet & Spicy Chili Doritos).  Then bed (separately but at my apartment).  Then Saturday we grocery shopped, made our Harvest Pizza for the Autumn Beer Pairing Party (butternut squash and sage sauce, topped with mozz, blue cheese, prosciutto, carmelized onions), got cleaned up and headed to Schmess' house.  We had fifteen people there, and it was great!  My favorite beer was:

I very much recommend it for fall and into the winter.  And then a small group of us hit The Sparrow, and then on my way home I heard from Shmannon that the crew that had left to see Pee Wee on Broadway was coming back and going to Sweet Afton, so I met up with them for one more beer.  10 hours of drinking and not really drunk, my friends.

Boy-wise, the party was interesting.  Hike was in touch all day but couldn't make it after all.  So the Marine was there, and boy did he get belligerently drunk.  I'm still not sure how EVERYONE else drank him under the table, but he was saying mean things, calling me a bitch (actually he'd slur "Stephanie, you're so attractive...and you're such a bitch,") and word came out that he has a girlfriend who is living in Italy, and he was basically flirtateous and then quickly became an asshole.  It was so strange, as I'd never seen him like that.  Finally as the party was winding down, Schmess and I went to a bar with her boyfriend, two of his co-workers, and the Marine, and apparently while I was in the restroom at one point, the Marine very quietly puked INTO HIS PINT GLASS OF BEER.  Yeah...then he left and went across the street to the beer garden for dancing?  He wouldn't listen to us telling him to get in a cab, so there's a point where you just have to let them go.  Especially if they're stubborn Marines.  I'm not really sure what the right thing to do there was, but after being verbally abused for a few hours, I was ready to let him go.

Sunday I just relaxed at home and got my nails done and worked on a freelance editing project.  I wasn't too hungover, weirdly, but most of the drinking was sort of slow and I got more sleepy than silly on Saturday, which was probably for the best.  It was a great weekend, and so good to have Schmauren back in town for a brief visit -- it felt like she never left.

Ok, more on this week, etc. in the next post!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Sedatives, Please

Oyyy I think someone slipped me some caffeine last night.  I couldn't sleep until after 1:00 am, which is way too late for this little princess.  My eyes are tired and sore today, and to top it off, I forgot to bring my eyeliner, so I look rather dead.  Today is going to be rough.  I was just up worrying about the gamut of things I could possibly fret about, and my brain would not slow down.  It's so aggravating.

So today!  I have dodgeball late, at 8:20, so I may be able to get a nap in beforehand.  I'm also tentatively Skyping with Britch, but I can have it all, right?  ANNNDDD in sad news for Britch but happy news for me, she has to come back to the States for awhile until she can get her Visa in order to live in London and get her PhD, so that means she'll be in Ohio at Christmas and I can finally SEE HER.  It's been a year, I think, which is the longest we've ever been apart.  *Sniff*  And I can meet her sexy Scottish boyfriend when he visits for the holidays, too.  Amazing.

My haircut last night was lovely, and on the way to the salon I walked through Madison Square Park to check out the doggies (aw) and then through Eataly, which wasn't so crowded on a Monday evening and was very interesting!  It's a little overwhelming, but not as crazy as I'd pictured from reading about it, and I'm glad I saw the whole Italian market mall in person.  Hike and I were texting, and I mentioned where I was, and he said he was just going to check it out too, on his way to an open house (for an MBA program at Baruch), but he ran out of time.  Otherwise we would've run into each other (or not, as that place is large.)  How romantic comedy that would have been!  We have so much in common. 

Then after a battle with the MTA that resulted in my finally hailing a cab at 63rd and Lex after being underground for almost an hour, I ate dinner, watched HIMYM, then read more of my freelance project.

I was thinking about this as I lay awake for hours last night, and I have such a romantic pattern ingrained in me -- that of pursuit, of always needing more attention/affection, of chasing.  And to be really psychoanalytical about it, I know it can be traced back to my childhood.  I had very loving parents, don't get me wrong, but I had a very busy Dad who had to be away from the house a lot for work all day and then again for meetings after dinner at home with the family.  I never felt unloved, but I definitely felt like he wasn't around and I wanted to see him a lot more.  But then when he was, it was so special and exciting -- and sometimes we'd go roller skating!  So basically I formed this pattern of drought then flood, in terms of love or time spent together, which is one of my main "love languages." 

I'm not trying to be creepy about this, just aware of why my brain both loves and hates unavailable men.  And why I sometimes get cranky about this one that is super-available.  I'm also not complaining -- I feel very lucky to have met Hike and to have his attention so readily.  So now I have to make sure to appreciate what I have and to relax when I feel like we're talking too much and we have nothing to say.

Anyway, those are my deep thoughts for today.  I don't even want to get into my inferiority complex at work, which is another topic that I worked to death in my brain last night.  (Along with panic about the possibility of having a boyfriend, fear that I'm still hung up on Mex, nerves about mixing my two worlds this weekend, etc.)  Maybe some other time -- aren't you excited? 

OH, but I read in an astrology guide that people born on my birthday are destined to be worriers.  So it's not my fault.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Halloweekend 2010

Hello, ghouls and ghosts.  Did we all celebrate in style?  And by style, I mean with home-made costumes and possibly 3:00 am pizza in a parlor full of drunk weirdos?

Let's catch up.  Fridate was great. Hike walked to pick me up, then we went to this Thai place on Broadway (Benjamin's) that his friend had recommended. It was good food with a weird Asian-attempting-to-be-romantic atmosphere, but it was nice. We shared two entrees and a bottle of wine and dumplings, and had good conversation, as usual. He also managed to read my mind when we were deciding what to order, so we apparently have similiar tastes, which is convenient. Then we went to Crescent Lounge for a few drinks on the way home. We ran into his friend on Broadway while walking back, and I was being sized up before I realized he knew the guy...I hope I wasn't drooling or something. So then couch cuddling at the Lounge then home.

Saturday after a panicked search for my Indian feathers, went to meet Schmillie at Schmate's. We hung out, searched in vain for the light switch, and drank wine. Then we walked to the party, which was sort of too much, I think. Just loud and clubby and hard to get drinks because of the line at the bar, but we managed to have some fun. It was good to see other friends in great costumes, however--including a group of Troop Beverly Hills ladies. Hike and I were attempting to meet up (he was with his bro, sis in law, and others) but it was getting very complicated as they kept moving and he couldn't say where they'd be, and I nearly gave up, but then around 2 am we left the party and he was up in the 50s (at Black Finn) so I cabbed it up there for a drink on my way home and Schmil headed to the train. I met everybody, we sort of danced a little, I shared his drink, and then we all went for pizza, which was the best way to end the night. I love seeing a pizza parlor full of costumed drunk people!

Sunday I slept in, watched DVR, ordered a pizza (I know), read half of a manuscript I'm editing for freelance, and that's about it. It was a nice recovery day, since I didn't have anything to do anyway except read. So that was 'Weener 10! I think next year I'd rather do a houseparty or small gathering with costumes and wine. My old age is showing.

Tonight I'm getting a haircut, yay!  I love getting my hair cut, and it only happens about 3 times a year, so I'm planning on relaxing and enjoying as much as possible.  Also, today I'm wearing a size 4 pair of dress pants that haven't seen the light of day in 2 years, so that is exciting.  Wow, lots of numbers in this paragraph.

Anyway, now that November and cold temps are here, let's all start listening to Christmas music.  I broke out my red coat this morning plus my checked hat, so I'm feeling very Mary Tyler Moore today.  Let's hope the week zooms by, as I'm so looking forward to the weekend again!