Wednesday, January 19, 2011

a change in the making

Those that know me well know that I will hear a song, fall in love with it, and listen to it a billion times.  "A change in the making" by Addison Road, and a conversation with a friend got me thinking today. 

Why are we obsessed with aging? Why is it so terrible? I know some of you are cursing my 28 year old self under your breath, but I really don't understand what the big deal is.  I don't get it.  I was talking to a college friend the other day, and she is upset about her upcoming 30th birthday. She said that once this happens, she will be 40, and then it won't be long before she is dead. ha!

yeah. she was for real! (sorry I called you out, T) Why are we teaching our children this? It is like complaining all day Sunday about having to go to work on Monday. It's a waste of a perfectly good day.  I've never been one of those people that looks back on high school and college and wishes they could go back. I can't help but think that the most fun is ahead.

 I've admitted that I have no idea what I'm doing in my life, I have totally had my fair share of confusion and struggle. But I'm trying to figure it out day by day- just like everyone else.  I heard on TV today "Age is God's promise that we still have more to offer to the world."  What a wonderful reason.

No matter what age you are, you have a purpose. What an honor! There are always new ways to grow and learn, and to teach and give.  I think about "A letter to my 18 year old self" and I realize that in 10 years, when I am 38, I may have advice to give to a young mother that is balancing a billion things and trying to stay sane.  Kind of like I am now. However, I have no idea what I would say.

Maybe I should start with "don't throw away Will's newborn clothes just yet. You will be pregnant again in 2 seconds."

In all seriousness, and in my very young and naive opinion, age is not something to fear, but a gift.

I hope to be always be growing and evolving, and when I am at a point where I'm not I think I'll be in big trouble.  I am a wiser and more confident woman than I was 3 years ago.  Being a mother and wife has made me stronger in every aspect of my life. However, it is also my biggest challenge.  There are days when I am positive that I am not centered, and I have to take a moment for me and be conscious of where I am, and regroup. The beauty in this is that I learn each time how to do it differently because each situation is different.  I am becoming more efficient at realigning myself to be where I need to be, to be a better person for all those around me and for myself.

I still have moments where I am completely frazzled and clueless, but being present and conscious of those around me and myself (that is the hardest part) is the big lesson I have started to learn in my 20's.

I am not a techy, so I couldn't figure out how to get the clip on this blog- so I have included the link below to a slideshow type thing with the song.  I hope you enjoy it, and I hope that it causes you to explore where you are like it did me.

Click here to listen to "a change in the making" by Addison Road.


Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Dinner Club-January 2011

Some friends and I formed a dinner club after I had the wee one, and we have had such a blast.  Some of our parents were involved in one in the 80's, and they had a ball, so we decided to carry on the tradition.

If you google dinner club, you will see all sorts of insane things that people do.  I have heard of one that only focuses on recipes from Bon Appetit magazine.  I have heard of some that have lovely multiple course dinners with the best of china.  That sounds great and all, but we are mostly working mother's with very young children.  We don't have time for that, AND for it to be fun.  Preparing an eloquent dish while shooing a 10 month old off your leg sounds miserable.  It needed to be casual- very low key.

After discussion, we chose to have the host couple prepare the meat of their choice and a signature drink, and each couple would bring a side and a little something to sip on if they had something particular they liked.  The one idea we stole from another dinner club in town is that each host invites a mystery couple.  It can be anyone of their choosing, and it has been so fun to show up and find out who is there.

We have had many memorable experiences thus far: the queso explosion, the quest for outdoor curtains, the ceiling of twinkle lights, and the tipping of the ladder.  It never fails that someone will be hilarious.

It has been almost a year since our first meeting, and it has been something that I look forward to every month. Here are some memories of our night.

Pioneer Woman Artichoke and Olive Dip and Pioneer Woman Black Eyed Pea Dip. 

Pioneer Woman Mashed Potatoes 

Delicious Beef Stew (not Pioneer Woman...)

Wedge Salad (I couldn't help myself- I had to eat it before I remembered to take a picture.
Now that I am uploading pictures, I am giggling about how almost everything was a PW recipe. It has to be said, everything she does is the best and SO SO easy.  A couple of suggestions for the dips is to add more cayenne to the artichoke and olive dip, and to add more jalapenos and black beans to the black eyed pea dip. They were both delicious.  Another thing I forgot to snap a picture of was the jalapeno corn bread.  It too was divine.  The wedge was a classic wedge with bleu cheese dressing (my favorite salad of all time).  Hint: stew poured lovingly over mashed potatoes is hard to beat. I have been craving it ever since. 

Now on to the important thing. The specialty drink. Our hostess dared to be creative with a blueberry martini. FAIL. Ha! sorry Jen.  I rarely drink liquor, so I thought it was terrible, but alas, my new favorite and the most dangerous drink of all time arrived to save the day. 

The hot and dirty martini.  Or as I call it, the HOT and DIRRTY. This is a serious drink, folks. Be prepared to take the next day to recover.  Now, I am no expert bartender, but here is what I think was in this magical nectar.  Pepper vodka, (who knew, right?) jalapenos, olive juice, olives... I think that was it.  You can tell that I didn't mix this myself. 

She did. Multiple times. They kept creeping up in front of me..
After dinner is a time to hang out with friends and just enjoy a night off from the world and with each other. It was so nice to sit by the fire on this very cold night. Please enjoy some incriminating photos. Fair warning: the pictures are either yellow or dark- depending on what time it was. I may need to stick with the auto setting for evening functions. 

4 pictures and this was the best one. I think our host was permanently confused. 

the ladies of dinner club + mystery lady

no nick- your head isn't yellow and shining. I like this picture. 

the mystery guest and E

Our beautiful hostess, Jennifer
Many thanks to our beautiful hostess (and host) for a wonderful night full of memories, and a wasted Sunday chugging water, eating grease, and vowing to never touch a martini again. (as I sip my hot and dirrty...)