Cupid is stupid

I’m just coming back from a week long work conference, physically and mentally just coming back.
I got home in time to see all the beautiful Valentine’s posts, read all the tweets of love and devotion, and see the Instagram shots of flowers and gifts. I love seeing all the love – but I could care less about the day. This got me thinking (in a Carrie Bradshaw kinda way)…
Am I dead inside because I don’t care about Valentine’s Day?
I know my husband doesn’t believe me, but I really don’t want to go to dinner tonight. Even after all these years he thinks it’s some sort of trap. I love flowers but I love them all the time. Not just today. And Forrest was right – life is like a box of chocolates – except you know exactly what you’re going to get today.
You know what I’d like for him to get me? Those bags from IKEA. The big blue ones that hold everything and cost 50 cents? I’d post pics of them all over the place.
Know what else he could do? Put the new shower liner on in the bathroom. If he did that I’d tweet a love sonnet to him (ok, a haiku).
Does that mean I don’t love romantic gestures? No. I just don’t want them or need them today – I’d like a rain check for a really crappy day in March if possible.
Cupid isn’t stupid. I’m sorry I said that. He’s just not my kinda guy.

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I love secrets

I got a lot of great gifts this year – I’m a lucky girl. Last night we did the final gift exchange with my family – there is absolutely no more gift giving and receiving after this. It’s over. Done. No more I tell you!

My little bitty sister gave me this really cool book I thought I’d share with you. It’s less of a cookbook and more of a nonfiction book about chefs. Right up my alley!

It’s full of beautiful photos and recipes, but it’s really storytelling about the chefs. What they do, why they do it and how they do it.

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It’s written with a sharp biting wit and doesn’t take itself too seriously, look at these hilarious quotes…

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The other cool thing about this book is all the wacky food the chefs make. In the world of Instagram and 24/7 food trucks – where everyone’s a foodie and Harissa and truffle oil are almost old school – I love reading about unusual food. Lebnah… Tasso … This is no everyday kimchi cookbook. There’s actually a line on page 267 that reads, “This is not a traditional baba au rhum, so purists, stand back!” Wtf?

Will I ever make it? Probably not. But I will sleep better knowing that there are people out there that do.

Ok – gotta go source some Kajmak cheese.

Faux Baking

It’s not really faux.
You do turn an oven on.
Our wonderful neighbors make this every year and I promptly stole the recipe.
Actually it’s more of a trick than a recipe.
But it’s so good and it’s so easy.
Here’s what you need 3 ingredients:
Small pretzels, Hershey kisses, and M&Ms.

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Preheat your oven to 175. See, told you it was baking.
Then spread your pretzels out on a sheet and put a kiss on top.

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Bake for 4 minutes and take out.
Add an M&M and smush down. Smushing is a technical baking term. Let them cool and done!

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Trust me, your people will be happy. Your people will love you. More. Finally.

Things that make you go….f**##%@!

Not a post. Just a thought.

Unless a store runs out of gifts (aka merchandise) – they should not run out of gift boxes.

To all those stores who try to “sell” me a box….for shame. FOR SHAME!!!

(I know many sad things have happened in our world and this is nothing. But I need to focus on something or else I’ll go mad!)

On Not Being a Grownup at Christmas – GUEST POST!

A big thank you to my little bitty sister for this great post! And look at those jazzy handmade stockings. Show off.
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Last week, while lamenting to my colleagues that I had no idea what to get my boyfriend for Christmas, we ended up having a long conversation about the family present exchange. That’s when I realized that, shockingly, I have some pretty strong opinions on the topic. So here is my Family Present Exchange Philosophy
(FPEP):
In our family, Christmas is about the presents. Once I explain, you’ll realize that that wasn’t the saddest sentence ever to grace this blog.
Our family – cousins, aunts, uncles, significant others – gets together all the time. We celebrate every little thing with a big family get-together, and for the most part, it’s great (tis the season to overlook the drama). American holidays, Indian holidays, Hindu holidays, Christian holidays: it’s all fair game. Next year there’s even talk of getting a menorah (we’re equal opportunity around here). And there’s always food, fun, and more food.
But there generally aren’t presents. Indians are all about the benjamins, which is practical and smart, just like we are. That’s why Christmas is so great (here comes my FPEP); to me, unlike gifts of cash, Christmas presents represent the time and thoughtfulness of the giver. I don’t really care if I’m getting another fondue pot or something from the Dollar Store. Cheesy at it sounds, it really is the thought that counts to me. This person went out of her way to think about what I might like, spent hard-earned money on it, and then wrapped it in pretty paper (Here my colleague, the globetrotting poet I share an office with, disagreed. She wished her big Irish Catholic family would just give her money, instead of the “crap I’ll never use” they usually give.)
But it’s not just the stuff. It’s the entire experience. I love opening presents. I love that we all move away from the TV and sit around the tree. I love the anticipation of finding out what’s under the wrapping, and heck, I love the wrapping too. I spend way too much time thinking about how I wrap my presents, and I like giving my family the presents I’ve spent my time making beautiful.
During this conversation at work, another colleague recommended that my boyfriend and I get something for our apartment – a shared gift. He and I had considered this option, but we decided it was far too grown up for us. We wanted the presents, however small and inexpensive, but full of thoughtfulness and love.
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More is More

So I’m still in the midst of going through my stuff to figure out what to put out at the yard sale. Yes, I’m still talking about the yard sale. It’s like stressing me out man. Gird your loins – tomorrow’s post may be about yard sales too!

So as I’m searching for stuff (oh the irony…shouldn’t I be tripping over stuff to get rid of, isn’t that why one signs-up for a yard sale? ok, maybe it’s not irony, maybe it’s just stupidity), I find some of my old silver bracelets. They remind me of a funny store. Funny for me to tell and you to hear. Not so funny for my husband who thought it was a gift and now it’s a funny story. We must all sacrifice to the blog gods.

When we were first dating, way back when, his gift giving was,in a word, sucky. Full disclosure on my part – so was mine. Except mine was sucky because I had no money, ever. My parents had dropped me off at college with $5 and a smile. This guy always had a job and so he always had cash (that and his good looks were hard to ignore). The first gift giving we did was at Christmas. I gave him…nothing. He gave me a beautiful pair of Onyx and silver earrings. I was floored. They were amazing. They were also the last good gift I’d get for years.

I hear him out there in the universe objecting, fist in air, outraged. Need I remind him of the beautiful bracelet shaped box I got for my birthday with a PEN inside. A pen. Who knew a 23-year-old could retire from no job. Or the pair of shoes I got in the wrong size? Note to all you single men out there – unless you’re prince charming, don’t get your gal shoes.

Then came my favorite attempt of all time. I call it – The Great Silver Dump of 1995. He asked what I’d like for Christmas. I said I’d love any kind of silver jewelry. I was hoping he’d pick out a ring, a bracelet, a necklace that he thought was perfect for me. Something that would remind me of him every time I wore it.

What I got was 4 silver bracelets, 2 rings, 3 pairs of earrings and 1 necklace. 10 boxes of silver jewelry. It was like he robbed a store. I just kept opening box after box after box. It was hysterical. I wore every single piece for years (and years) (and years), until I lost them or broke them or displaced them.

Here’s 3 of the bracelets from my bounty that survived. They will not be at the yard sale.

and because I know you’re nosey like me – here’s the jewelry box I found them in. It was a gift to my mother from my grandmother. It was either given to me by my mother, or I saw it at my mom’s and decided to take it. One of those things happened. Who can remember details.

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