Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth of July

Hiya eaters!

Long time so talk. How are you?

I’m…bleh. Leon and I got home from our Virginia Beach vacation last night and I’m feeling a little lazy and unmotivated. Oh well, I guess that’s what happens after a short vacation.

And since that laziness extends all the way to my blogging, I figured I’d just do a photo-dump. Also, I totally blanked on taking photos of most things, so this is the best I can do.

Car selfless with Charlie on the way up to Virginia Beach.

Car selfless with Charlie on the way up to Virginia Beach.

He's rejecting my love.

He’s rejecting my love.

This really is #nofilter.

This really is #nofilter.

We're making the same face!

We’re making the same face!

(Insert all the pictures that I didn’t take on the 4th.)

On Friday it was Leon's birthday, so we went out to dinner at Chick's Oyster Bar.

On Friday it was Leon’s birthday, so we went out to dinner at Chick’s Oyster Bar.

I ate two, which brings my lifetime raw oyster count up to three.

I ate two, which brings my lifetime raw oyster count up to three.

I love crab cakes!

I love crab cakes!

Leon requested apple pie for dessert.

Leon requested apple pie for dessert.

On Saturday we went for a family walk down by the water.

On Saturday we went for a family walk down by the water.

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Charlie and Papa's dog, Toby, were exhausted after we made them exercise so much.

Charlie and Papa’s dog, Toby, were exhausted after we made them exercise so much.

An interesting, almost champagne-y beer to round out the weekend.

An interesting, almost champagne-y beer to round out the weekend.

Your turn, eaters:

What did you do this weekend?

What’s your favorite kind of seafood?

Later eaters!

Charlie’s 2nd Birthday

Hello eaters!

It’s been a fantastic day for so many reasons, not the least of which that I absolutely needed a day off and I took a yoga class for the first time since I broke up with Bikram.

The real reason that today was so great, though, was because it’s Charlie’s birthday!

Yes, my sweet baby puppy is two years old. We’ve had him for about thirteen months and I want to write an entire post about what’s changed since getting a dog (because I think choosing to get a pet is a huge decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly), but today all I want to talk about is how freaking cute Charlie is. And how happy he looks all the time.

Because he’s the happiest, cutest dog in the world.

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We started the day off by letting Charlie cuddle between Leon and I this morning, which is his favorite thing ever. Every time he gets in bed he tries to get in between us and then I have to shoo him over to the other side of me, so letting him roll around between us was a huge thing.

The real excitement didn’t start until after I got home from yoga when Leon and I decided to walk down to Best Way for beer. It’s about a mile each way and Charlie loved the exercise and the chance to sniff pee he doesn’t get to sniff everyday.

After a quick break inside to cool down in front of the fan, we all headed to the yard.

Grilled cheese on the side with some grilled bread.

Grilled cheese on the side with some grilled bread.

Leon grilled some pineapple and ham (leftover and frozen from Easter) kebabs. And Charlie got his first present.

Kong Air squeaky toy. The best ever.

Kong Air squeaky toy. The best ever.

Dog owners, get this toy for your dog. It’s made by Kong, so it’s pretty much indestructible. And it’s a squeaky toy with an on-off switch, for when the squeaking gets annoying. How awesome is that?!?!

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charlie's 2 birthday03

Charlie loved it.

After kebabs and beer, it was time for cake.

Banana and peanut butter pup cake.

Banana and peanut butter pup cake.

Please excuse the sloppy icing. It was hot and the icing didn’t turn out quite right. But who cares, because this banana cake/bread with peanut butter icing was delicious. (I’ll post the cake/bread recipe soon.)

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charlie's 2 birthday06

And Charlie, after demonstrating his only trick of staying until we tell him to eat, loved it.

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He licked it a few times and then proceeded to eat the whole damn slice in one bite.

How many bites does it take to eat a slice of cake?

How many bites does it take to eat a slice of cake?

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One bite.

One bite.

It wasn’t graceful or polite, but it was gone in a flash. And then he wondered where it went.

Where'd it go, you guys?

Where’d it go, you guys?

Once we all finished our cake, we went inside for presents. Leon thought it would be funny to wrap all Charlie’s presents in newspaper.

As to be expected, Charlie was a little afraid of it. He sniffed it a few times, but made no moves to get into it.

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Leon flipped the bundle over and Charlie was…still a little scared. (He’s a huge scared-y cat.)

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Eventually, after several tries, he was able to overcome his fear of the newspaper enough to retrieve the cheese and bacon stuffed bone.

And then he was gone.

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Seriously, he carried the bone off into his room and just now, two hours later, he emerged for the first time. It’s hilarious.

So all in all, I’m pretty sure Charlie has had the best birthday ever. And of course, he doesn’t understand what a birthday is or why we’re being extra nice to him today, so he’s probably a bit confused. But he’s also very very happy, which makes me very happy.

What do you think, eaters:

Do you throw your pets birthday parties?

What’s the best birthday present you’ve ever gotten?

Later eaters!

Weekend at Home

G’day eaters!

Leon and I got home yesterday from an amazing three-night trip to Georgia (A.K.A The Dirty Dirty).

For those of you who are new around here, I grew up in Macon, Georgia and my mom and a few of my friends still live there.

Leon and I drove down on Friday morning to spend the weekend. My Mom got back from a two-week business trip to China on Friday. My brother, Brady, had a triathlon on Saturday morning. And Brady and I talked Mom into having a graduation party for us on Saturday night. (And I needed to have my yearly mole check with my dermatologist on Monday, which I’ll talk about Thursday.)

Happy road trip puppy.

Happy road trip puppy.

Needless to say, I was pretty jazzed to take a trip home.

We had a low-key night on Friday. I made tacos and Charlie ran around like an idiot in the free air of Mom’s giant backyard.

On Saturday we got up supah early to watch Brady race.

Pre-race warm up.

Pre-race warm up.

Off and running.

Off and running.

Leaving it all on the course.

Leaving it all on the course.

He did great and finished 3rd overall.

Post-race.

Post-race.

Post-race.

Post-race.

And then Leon hopped behind the beer tent to pour Brady a beer.

'murica.

‘murica.

After the race we napped and then I went into party planning mode.

I got 5lbs of pulled pork barbecue, 2 qts of Brunswick stew, a keg of Bud Lite, and made a few simple cold salads.

A small bunch of people came over, including my friend from college, Liz, who works in Atlanta now, and my best friend from high school, Coco, who just moved back to Georgia on Saturday after spending a semester working at Disney World. Plus some people who have known me since I was probably about five.

Coco and Leon.

Coco and Leon.

It was a great time, I didn’t take a single picture, and we barely made a dent in the keg, despite our best attempts.

Sunday morning started slow and then Coco came over, we did a little shopping, and then Sunday Funday happened.

Leftovers are awesome!

Leftovers are the best-overs.

We had a ton of leftovers (and leftover beer) so we sat around, watched bad movies on TV, and ate and ate and ate and drank while it rained like crazy outside.

It was awesome. (And I think I ate a pound of pork by myself.)

Brady cracks himself up.

Brady cracks himself up.

Seriously.

Seriously.

And on Monday we drove home.

Now I’m gearing up for my work week, which started today and ends…eventually. Hopefully I’ll find some time in there to make it to the grocery store.

Your turn, eaters:

Does a weekend at home sound like a vacation to you?

What’s your idea of a good way to spend a rainy day?

Later eaters!

WIAW: Lots of Eggs

Hello eaters!

It is Wednesday, right?

I didn’t do anything on Monday and will work on Saturday, so I keep forgetting what day it is. But I keep seeing lots of WIAW (What I Ate Wednesday) posts going up, so I’ll follow the crowd.


Breakfast:

Scrambled eggs with asparagus and a plum with peanut butter.

Scrambled eggs with asparagus and a plum with peanut butter.

I promise I didn’t plan to eat two of my favorite seasonal foods right after I posted about them. But they were delicious (though that plum would have been better with sunflower butter rather than peanut butter).

Oh, and I added a couple of dollops of spicy mustard to my eggs before I scrambed them for some extra flavor.

Lunch:

Zucchini noodles topped with a couple of fried eggs.

Zucchini noodles topped with a couple of fried eggs.

Leon and I keep thinking that our fridge is over flowing with things, but in reality we have a ton of produce, a few random leftovers, and almost no protein. Hence why I’m eating eggs two meals in a row.

I also had a few bites of leftover carrot cake from this weekend.

Crossfit:

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Row row row my ass.

I drank a protein drink — chocolate GNC Wheybolic protein — and then came so closed to puking it up during this WOD.

We got to choose between running or rowing and I would have run, but after a warm up of 10 minutes of jump roping I knew my shitty shins couldn’t handle it.

Honestly, I don’t know which was better. I wanted to die many times throughout those 5,000 meters.

Dinner:

I feel like it’s been raining for weeks straight, so Leon and I were thrilled to get to grill last night. We split this big plate of grilled vegetables.

Mixed grilled vegetables.

Mixed grilled vegetables.

And this giant chicken breast.

Grilled barbecue chicken breast.

Grilled barbecue chicken breast.

Fyi, we buy whole healthy chickens from Earth Fare and then Leon butchers them. Not only are they cheaper than at Whole Foods (and way cheaper than buying bags of chicken breasts), but they’re also much bigger from Earth Fare. This was, by far, the biggest breast we’ve ever gotten.

Dessert:

A few beers with a friend, because I’m still in denial a bit that I’m done with college.

And I was home before midnight. Man, do I love getting a full night sleep.

Celebration:

Charlie thinks our king sized bed is his. It's a constant battle.

Charlie thinks our king sized bed is his. It’s a constant battle.

Yesterday marked the one year anniversary of Leon and I bringing Charlie home. I can’t believe it’s been a year.

Oh, has it been a wonderful year. I want to do a whole post about what having a dog has changed for us, but I think I’ll save that for his birthday.

Your turn, eaters:

How much sleep do you get a night? How much would you like to get?

What’s one thing that you always have in your fridge?

Later eaters!

Graduation Snapshots

Hellooooooo eaters!

I’ve been MIA lately and for that I’m sorry.

I’ve missed you lots, I promise.

But I graduated college yesterday, so I’m back.

After a few weeks of running around to tie up loose ends, a night of worrying about whether or not I passed one stupid class, an hour of defending my thesis, and a weekend of celebrating, I have finished college.

And it feels pretty good, I think.

Honestly, though, I don’t know. I’m still stuffed and reeling from everything that happened so quickly over the last couple of days. So while I try to process things and figure out my next step, here’s a handful of pictures from the last few days.

My new wreath, because it's tacky to have the same wreath up from Thanksgiving.

My new wreath, because it’s tacky to have the same wreath up from Thanksgiving.

Going into my second hour of standing on line to walk into graduation.

Going into my second hour of standing on line to walk into graduation.

They can't take it back now.

They can’t take it back now. #HireMe

Mother and brother.

Mother and brother.

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I’m in love with my dress.

And I'm in love with him.

And I’m in love with him.

My mom's boyfriend upon hearing that my camera was one the wrong setting so none of his pictures came out.

My mom’s boyfriend upon hearing that my camera was one the wrong setting so none of his pictures came out.

My sister at dinner.

My sister at dinner.

An amazingly tender steak from Print Works Bistro in Greensboro.

An amazingly tender steak from Print Works Bistro in Greensboro.

I'm in love with the shape of this martini glass. So feminine and refined. The martini wasn't half bad, either.

I’m in love with the shape of this martini glass. So feminine and refined. The martini wasn’t half bad, either.

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After two dinners out and a lunch at my house, my fridge is packed to the gills with delicious leftovers.

A well deserved afternoon relaxing with my pup.

A well deserved afternoon relaxing with my pup.

Your turn, eaters:

What did you get up to this afternoon?

Do you take leftovers from restaurants or is that tacky to you?

Later eaters!

PS — I’m coming back to blogging. Expect to see at least 4 posts a week from me.

Pastrami

Hiya eaters!

I think North Carolina’s three week spring is over and we are in full on summer mode.

I even have the sunburn to prove it.

I have been waiting for summer to start for so long. In my head I have a running bucket list of all the things I’m really excited to do this summer.

Walking down to Best Way, the extraordinary beer grocery store in my neighborhood (on Walker Ave in Greensboro, for all you natives), with Leon and Charlie to buy expensive, hoppy beers and drink them in the kitchen while we snack.

Going to Virginia Beach for a weekend of big, comfy couches and washers and dryers and beer on the beach and Charlie digging in the sand and crab cakes and fish tacos.

Improving my Toms tan.

Wearing sundresses and eating froyo with extra gummy worms (because cold gummies are the best thing ever).

Going to Georgia for Brady, my brother, and my graduation party where we’re going to get my mother to drink out of a keg.

Buying lots and lots of fresh fruit and making pies and cobblers.

The list goes on and on. And Sunday, on a gorgeous sunny day that was supposed to be cloudy, Leon helped me cross another thing off my list — barbecue.

A few weeks ago Leon snagged a cheap beef brisket and decided to smoke it. Of course, I’m always up for a big hunk of smoked meat.

So we set up camp on the front lawn.

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Charlie played in the grass. Leon sunbathed.pastrami02

I sat in the shade and tried to do homework.pastrami04

And we smoked a big hunk of meat.pastrami01

It was supposed to be pastrami. It’s been a while since I’ve eaten pastrami, so I don’t know how spot on it was. But I do know that after a few solid hours on the smoker this hunk of meat had a gorgeous crust. It was absolutely dripping juice between the cracks in the crust.pastrami07

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In a word: it was meat perfection.pastrami09

Leon sliced a bunch off and we stacked it high on homemade bread with provolone cheese, sauerkraut, and lots of brown mustard.

This stack created a sandwich of amazingly epic proportions. And while I normally would never leave any part of a sandwich behind, even I couldn’t finish this giant beast.pastrami10

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And while normally I would consider not finishing a sandwich to be a sign of failure (c’mon, my blog is called FoodBaby for a reason), I know that having a quarter of it in the fridge just means I get a midnight snack. And that there’s still a whole summer of big hunks of smoked meat ahead of me.

Barbecue chicken is on the menu for this weekend.

Your turn, eaters:

What are you most looking forward to this summer?

What’s your favorite kind of sandwich?

Later eaters!

A Few Goals

‘Ello eaters!

I spent all New Years day lying in bed with the second or third worst hangover of my life. It included the never ending precursor to a migraine that never actually started and a good bit of nausea whenever I lay on my back.

Aren’t you glad I told you that?

To make up for that TMI, here’s a picture of my brother in a suit. 

So while it wasn’t the most awesome way to spend the first day of 2013, it did give me a lot of time to think.

2012 was a phenomenal year for me.

I lived in London.

I had a great internship.

I went to Ireland with my boyfriend where I did NOT propose to him. (Oh, I never told you that funny story?)

I went to Paris twice.

I moved in with my boyfriend and started figuring out what kind of house person I am. Spoiler alert: not the obsessively clean kind.

I got the cutest, greatest, most wonderfully snuggly and adorable puppy in the world that is currently curled up in a little pretzel ball between Leon and I in bed.

I started doing Crossfit.

I hosted Thanksgiving.

Yeah, it’s been a big year. A stressful, crazy, trying, exciting, amazing, weird as fuck year.

And now I’m preparing for this new frontier year where I’ll be graduating from college and … doing other things.

And while I’m doing all these other things, I also have a few goals that I want to accomplish.

Side note: I’m calling them goals instead of resolutions because resolutions have a negative, stressful connotation. And because as Caitlinsaid far more eloquently than me, I don’t need another stressor. It’s not always about “doing more things more efficiently.”

One of my many plates of appetizers that I ate at my friends' paleo NYE party.

Anyway, my goals this year are simple.

First and foremost, I want to give more to charity. There are several causes that I’ve felt particularly drawn recently — a lot of pet rescues and childhood hunger charities. I want to donate to those causes, which means that I need to restructure my budgeting to allow for that. I want to volunteer, which means that I need to restructure my time to allow for that.

Second, I want to go on a vacation. Leon and I started a little savings jar with the hope that we’ll eventually be able to go on a vacation. We don’t know where. It won’t be extravagant. But it would be nice to go away for a few days.

Third, I want to read more. I’m not going to quantify this goal, because it’s kind of hard to read too much during the semester. But it’s just something for me to keep in mind.

Fourth, I want to drink a little less. It’s not that I drink all that much now, but I could always stand to drink less, right? Right!

Fifth, I want to eat more donuts. They’re one of my all time favorite foods and I think I can count on two hands the number of donuts that I ate last year. That’s less than one a month, which I deem despicable.

So there you have it, all the things I wish I were doing today instead of trying not to throw up and simultaneously wishing I had a big, juicy bacon cheeseburger. It’s a wild and crazy life I lead.

Your turn, eaters:

How did you spend the first day of 2013?

Do you have any goals or resolutions?

Later eaters!

Happy Merry!

G’morning eaters!

I just wanted to say a very merry Christmas from my little family to your whatever-size family!

PS — I did the Christmas chipper this morning. Did you?

Holiday Photo Dump

Hi eaters!

Sorry for completely disappearing these last few days. Between a date night and then a traveling day I haven’t had the material or time to blog.

So to make up for it, here’s a lovely photo dump with my attempt at humorous and informative captions.

1) This is what I read while waiting for my brand new tires to be put on. 2) If you enjoy humor and essays, this is the book for you.

 

An ornament from Sur la Table that I really wanted.

 

For all you Greensboro people, Crafted on S Elm is so good.

 

This is a sign that a restaurant is trying too hard.

 

Scrambled egg and chorizo tacos with avocado, pico, queso, and potatoes.

 

Leon and I celebrated Christmas on Wednesday night.

 

Egg nog with a splash of rum is delicious. Egg nog curdling because I didn't drink it fast enough is not.

 

My amazing boyfriend got me a very luxurious flavor of coffee from a local roaster.

 

The puppy nest I made Charlie in an attempt to help him feel better about being at my mom's house.

 

Lunch.

 

One of my all time favorite candies — Cadbury milk chocolate Easter eggs — is now in Christmas form!

 

Mom's boyfriend got someone to send him a real Christmas pudding all the way from Tesco grocery store in England!

 

I had no idea that you're supposed to pour brandy on a Christmas pudding and then light it on fire.

Your turn, eaters:

What’s your favorite candy?

How do you feel about drinking out of mason jars?

G’night eaters!

WIAW: Squat Tabatas

Hiya eaters!

So I had a realization today: I’m bored.

My homework is done. I didn’t work today. I don’t have errands or crafts to do.

So you know what I did to fill my time? I did lots of dishes.

This is what it has come to.


Breakfast:

Two sunny side up eggs, a clementine, and a slice of Irish soda bread with a healthy schmear of butter.

Leon made corned beef and soda bread on Monday night, so I just had to have some leftover soda bread for breakfast. Schmeared with a thick pat of really good local butter, of course.

Dog walk:

Charlie is getting progressively crazier on his walks. His new trick yesterday was running up the side of a hill and then body surfing down it.

Charlie the body surfer.

I would probably be annoyed if he wasn’t the cutest little dummy.

Lunch:

I forgot to take a picture because I didn’t eat until something like 3:30. But it was a salad of red leaf lettuce topped with orange bell pepper, avocado, bacon, cheddar cheese, and steamed broccoli.

It was delicious. But then, when isn’t bacon on a salad a good thing?

Crossfit:

Last night’s class was a lower body killer!

Warm up: 3 rounds

Run ½ mile

10 empty barbell (which is 30#) behind the head overhead presses

15 empty barbell good mornings

10 empty barbell overhead squats

Yup, it’s the warmest warm up in town!

(That’s what we all say whenever the warm up is especially hard.)

WOD:

#HoorayCrossfit!

O’m’gah! Those squats killed me. I seriously almost couldn’t walk after each tabata. But, despite feeling like a cripple turtle on the run, I was able to run an 8:50 mile. Sure, that’s 28 seconds slower than my PR, but I’ll take it.

Appetizer:

Lay's, you will be the death of me.

Why do I buy chips? It never ends well.

Dinner:

Blackened catfish and roasted broccoli and brussels sprouts.

Sometimes Leon and I pretend to be healthy by eating fish and vegetables.

After dinner snack:

A slice of the cookie bar-cake thing I made yesterday.

Following my manifesto beliefs, this is not dessert because it’s actually almost healthy. I’ll post the recipe tomorrow.

Your turn, eaters:

What’s the hardest workout you’ve done lately?

When do you normally eat lunch?

G’night eaters!