So my latest experiment in baking was a White Chocolate Sweet Potato cake from Martha Stewart.
Pictures in the extended entry.
You may or may not know…On June 9th Keith Urban (referred to from here on out as KU) is playing at the Mandalay in Vegas. I have had tickets (and pretty damn good ones I might add) to this show…for months and months as they were purchased on presale. BFM lives in Vegas…and LOVES her some KU so we are going to this concert.
Initial plan was for me to drive down on Thursday June 7th. No biggie right? I do it all the time…500 miles one way alone…I know the route like the back of my hand. Well…all this was thwarted when Doris the Rav decided to display her intermittent starting problem. So I didn’t really want to drive a car with a possible problem through the desert alone during the heat of summer because I had visions of me walking down a lonely highway towards a call box…while buzzards circled overhead just waiting to pick out my eyeballs. That freaked me out a little.
So then I decided I would rent a car. Until I found that most places will not rent to you for the advertised price if you are driving out of state…not to mention the fact that I wanted a biggish car not a Kia Rio type car…and by the time I rented the car then paid for gas for the trip I would be spending a hell of a lot of money to get to Vegas.
I can’t drive my mom’s xterra because…well I find driving her car uncomfortable for 10 miles…I can’t imagine trying to drive it for 500. I just don’t fit well in the seats…and I refuse to drive my dad’s silverado anywhere…even though I love it to death. The last time I borrowed his truck the advertisement on the side of a transit bus flew off and hit the front grill causing $1600 worth of damage and that wasn’t even my fault!!! So …
I ended up with a ticket to Vegas on Southwest Airlines…which ended up being just slightly cheaper than renting the car…plus I don’t have to pay for gas with the plane. Anyway…I don’t know if I mentioned it here or not…but I am PETRIFIED of flying. PETRIFIED. The last time I flew alone I decided to upgrade to firstclass…mostly for the free booze. Of course this didn’t work out so well because I had just a tad too much of the margarita and ended up scared to death that the plane was crashing because I bent over to get something out from under my seat and the whole damn plane felt like it was coming with me. Luckily I didn’t go with my first instinct when I thought the plane was crashing which was to scream something to the effect of “DEAR GOD WE ARE GOING DOWN” because I am sure that would have gone over well.
So I have been ignoring the fact that I have to fly but today…is the 1 week mark…as I leave Wednesday evening from San Jose International…(now called Mineta or something like that)….and I am totally freaking out. I hate flying. I hate heights. A little part of me wants to call off the whole damn thing and email BFM the tickets and say here you go..have a blast. I mean I won’t because I already paid for my flight…but …ACK! And I mean ACK!!! I am freaked out.
(yes I even checked busses and trains…busses take 18 hours to make it- which is about 10 longer than it takes me and trains? Forget about trains because out here passenger train service sucks big time).
What you are seeing are Monkey Parts. I am currently trying to crochet a stuffed monkey. We will see how it comes out…but I just had the parts spread out over the table and thought it would make an interesting picture…the actual picture from flickr has notes on it if you are interested click the picture.
I finally won something on blingo:
You should totally try this….I know Janet even won an iPod using blingo! So sign up and use blingo as your search engine. Funny thing was when I won? I was on the phone with a customer and had to put them on hold so I could launch a backup browser to finish my search so I could finish talking to them. Anyway click the link below to join blingo!
Roxy and I are a lot a like I realized today. We both like routines. She is a task master when it comes to routines. And she is just a beagle. At 5:00 she wants up and out. At breakfast time she sits by the door and waits for her “cookie”. She goes outside for the bulk of the day and plays (read tries to dig to china) and sleeps and chases birds. At 3:15ish she comes back in when my mom lets her in the house. She patrols the house…checks out the garbages for treasures (even though she never finds any) and settles in for a nap. At 5:15ish she is ready for me to come home. She fusses over me for a minute and does her patented happy dance…and sits by the fridge and stares at me…waiting for me to take her out for the walk (she stands by the fridge because the basket with her leash and baggies resides up there). Then we go for our walk. She comes home and starts loving on whoever is free….but there is a motive…she really wants her dinner. Then she is her own little beagle for awhile and then when she is ready for bed she comes and lays on my feet or near me…to let me know she is ready and is not pleased that I am not ready. Then she goes out for “peepee time” and into bed she goes (but not before a bedtime liversnap or something).
This is her routine and she demands we stick to it!!!
So I have mentioned it recently that I am a race fan..Nascar in particular. This revelation might be new to some of you…but it isn’t new to my heart. I have been a race fan since before I could drive. I have been a race fan as long as I can remember!
The INDY 500 was always like…the Superbowl in my house when I was growing up (not that we don’t watch the superbowl too but you get my drift). Bubble day was our playoff games. I think I got into it as a way of bonding with my father (not that we didn’t have a bond..but he and my brother had hunting and camping…and my dad and I had racing). And got into it I did. I LOVED racing…any form of racing…but especially CART…or as we called them “INDY CARS.” Let’s just say- I knew the words the “Back Home Again (in Indiana)” before the words to my own state song! And what 5 and 6 year old knows who Jim Nabors is? I did. Don’t get me wrong…we watched stock car racing (nascar) back when the sponsors were mostly oil companies and ciggarette companies (when the Nextel Cup…was called the Winston Cup). Back when DW drove instead of commentated. Oh and if all we could find on Sunday was some drag racing…it didn’t stop us from watching. (wheels and fast…see it is a theme!)
My love affair with anything fast (with wheels) continued. I remember one summer I must have watched Heart Like A Wheel (the story of the Shirley Muldowney- the first woman in Drag Racing) about a zillion times (it was either on HBO or Showtime- I don’t remember which). I wanted to be like Shirley Muldowney! Then towards 1985ish I became a total tomboy and instead of having my room plastered with pictures of movie stars and pop stars…my room was plastered with race cars, Lamborghini posters, anything fast with wheels. Many of my little brother’s friends weren’t sure who’s bedroom was who’s at the time.
Then as I got into high school my room started looking more like a typical teenage girls room. Lamborghini posters were taken down to make room for Posion and Guns N Roses, and of course, Slaughter posters (Ok…maybe not TYPICAL teenage girl…but teenage metal-loving girl yes). My friends didn’t understand my love of “racing” so it sat on a back shelf and rapidly started collecting dust. Then some time around 10th grade or so- my dad surprised me with three-day race tickets to see “The Indy Cars” at Laguna Seca (a race track about 10-15 minutes from my house). I even got out of school on Friday to be able to go. Part of me was excited. Part of me was embarassed (hey it was high school). I thought we would go and sit in some bleachers for hours on end and watch cars…but he surprised me by getting paddock passes too so we could wander around the garage area…and then…I was hooked again.
Being in the garage area at an Indy race was so fascinating to me. It was an assault on your senses. LOUD engines being tested, the smell of oil and rubber, colorful cars, people running all over with a job to get this or test that. It amazed me. And then I saw him. I recognized him from TV…A.J. Foyt was standing next to his hauler in his firesuit having just run some practice laps. He was a lot bigger than I imagined…and slightly scary looking to me. I just stared and kinda went “Isn’t that?” My dad stopped and saw what I was looking at and dragged me over to him (yes dragged…you have to remember I was painfully shy back then) and we got his autograph and my dad took some pictures. Then it was like a game…who could I recognize? I even saw Mario Andretti but didn’t get his autograph…he was jogging towards the pits in a hurry…I then decided I needed to seek out my favorite drivers: Danny Sullivan (whom I found and got his autograph) and Al Unser Jr. (whom I didn’t find). I also found Scott Pruett – at the peak of his Indy career (before the crash in Florida) and ended up dragging my dad to him because I thought he was cute. It was fun…it was hands on…and we had kick ass seats on turn 11 at Laguna (before the built the pit suites- which block most of the view). I had a blast and was hooked again.
Yeah yeah you are probably asking yourself why am I such a fan of NASCAR if I started out as such a CART fan…and I honestly don’t have an answer except that I think it is because NASCAR (or STOCK cars) look more like “real” cars then their open wheel counter parts.
True story: my first car was a 1990 Chevy Lumina Euro Sedan (not the minivan) that I inherited from my parents. I am 99% sure that the reason my dad bought that car (although I am sure he would deny it lock stock and barrel today) is because it was THE car that the NASCAR chevy teams switched to the year it came out…and being featured heavily in the movie DAYS OF THUNDER didn’t hurt.
Plus it didn’t help when CART split into IRL and CHAMP and half of my favorite drivers went one way and the the other half the other way. I was confused and frankly didn’t understand the difference or the purpose of that move…and mostly- I still don’t.
So now instead of dreaming of attending the INDY 500 I dream of attending a NASCAR race (my dad says stock cars use to race at Laguna Seca but they don’t any more…and I want an oval…not a road course). Of course if I am going to go with my dad we will have an argument over where to go…He is all about Talladega (big superspeedway) and I am all about Bristol (short track bumping and grinding).
Anyway…gentleman…start your engines!
First The Friday Fill-in
1. 10 years at sea; one more won’t hurt!
2. Why is the rum gone?
3. Here there be PIRATES.
4. Ah…the boy does not know his rump from his elbow.
5. The pirate from the movie theater must get out of the way of my rav.
6. Of course it makes you want rum.
7. This weekend, I will sleep in, enjoy some racing and maybe even bake a cake! Happy Memorial Day!
The YOU ARE Mi-5 edition:
1. You are attending a professional sporting event. What sport? Do you go to a specific venue? Who do you root for?
2. You are quitting your job because your dream job just knocked on your door and fell into your lap. How long of notice do you give? What do you say to your current employer?
I would give at least 2 or 3 weeks. I would probably just say that I had to resign because the opportunity of a lifetime crossed my path.
3. You are attending a costume party. What do you go as? Will people recognize you (assuming there are people there that you know of course)?
I LOVE to dress up in costumes. I really do. Some of my best costumes where ones I just kind of made up myself. Once I was even a dead roadie. That was the best costume ever. This time I would like to dress up as a maiden (as in RenFaire garb).
4. You are going on a road trip. How long do you go? Where do you go?
Well I have always wanted to rent an RV and take 4 or 5 weeks and just drive all over the United States and explore things. I wouldn’t need a map…because I would just drive. Biggest Ball of Yarn? I am there!
5. You are the winner of $15,000. Not enough to quit your job or move to Hawaii or anything crazy. What do you do with it? Are you sensible and invest it? Do you buy something you need? Do you buy something you want but don’t need?
I would use it to buy a nice new car. Doris the Rav is getting kind of old…I am ready for something new. I would probably end up with a new rav…but I would test some other vehicles too. Maybe I would even upgrade to a Toyota Highlander or something.