On watch.

July 24, 2008

Just when I start to think I can handle Kansas weather, we have another tornado watch. Which completely ruined my evening, THANKYOUVERYMUCH. We were even planning to go out to dinner in the middle of running errands, but I get too anxious to drive during any kind of potential weather situation, so we had to nix that. Probably for the best, really, as it’s about 110 degrees outside. Also for the best because we took a trip to the campus dairy bar at work today. So, for my afternoon snack, instead of eating a Clif Kid Z-Bar, I indulged in a big cup of homemade mint fudge swirl ice cream. Mmmmm. Worth the heat index of 106 walk over, for sure. AND it was eating local. So. Extra points for that.

So for dinner, I threw together a bean salad so that I wouldn’t have to cook anything. Spinach, corn, black beans, tomato, cumin, lime, garlic, cayenne pepper. Oh, and some goat cheese. Which doesn’t necessarily go with any of that. Except that it goes with everything.

I don’t remember it being this bright and shiny. But whatever.

Okay, it’s time for me to pretend to read but actually sit anxiously until the watch is over. At midnight.



June 14, 2008

Last night I went out with some friends for a dinner/drinks thing to celebrate my upcoming nuptials. We went to Coco Bolo’s, where I had a salad with shrimp, chicken, and pico de gallo, and some crazy banana/rum/ice cream dessert that set me on a really bad path for the evening. I bet most people wake up with a normal hangover after their bridal showers/bachelorette parties, but not me. I woke up with a sugar hangover. I had that banana thing, most of a piece of baklava, half of a “magic bar” which had coconut, chocolate, 46 tons of sugar, and a bunch of crack or something in it to make it almost impossible to stop eating. And some “dirty shirleys” which have 7-Up and grenadine. I haven’t been able to eat anything remotely sweet all day. Even smelling my peanut butter, which is only made from peanuts, made me feel a little sickly.

We volunteered to help with the post-tornado clean-up today and it was insane. They were busing people from campus to the areas that were hit the hardest. The house we were helping with was completely leveled, stuff was everywhere. We worked for about two hours (the sweat helped with the sugar detox, btw). It was really surreal work, you’re going along and throwing stuff in big bags and boxes and everyone once in awhile you stop and think, “Oh, this is someone’s roof. This is someone’s wall. This is a piece of a mirror that someone used.” We even found the rotating plate from inside her microwave, broken into a bunch of pieces. The woman who owned the house was there, trying to get the last bits of stuff out of her basement. She had a cute dog. I’m sad for them.

I came home and basically slept for the rest of the day, got up at 6 and took a walk with Matt, then made dinner. We had chicken and veggie skewers grilled in the grill pan, with some quinoa pilaf. I also had a little salad bar salad from the grocery store that I didn’t eat at lunch.

Now I’m watching The Tudors (still dirty) and getting ready to go to bed because I have to work in the morning. Yes, on a Sunday.

Stress eating

June 12, 2008

Last night, I was in a great mood because I was elated by the outcome of Top Chef and the fact that Matt brought home cupcakes with sprinkles on the icing and then the tornado sirens went off again. we’d been in a watch all afternoon but apparently that’s normal for June, though I think “normal” is a complicated word in this context. It was an advance warning, so we had time to run to Donna’s so that we could take cover in her basement.

It was just like last week except that, this time, the tornado came through our town. This is the first time in 30 years? More than that? I don’t know. The first time in a long time, at any rate. We are safe, and our house and car are fine, but there’s damage everywhere. The tornado, which was more than 1/4 mile wide when it got here, touched down three times in town, including once on campus, where it caused more than 20 million dollars in damage. We weren’t able to work today, which was good because I’m in a fragile state of mind. I went to the gym a few hours ago and it was kind of surreal, like you’re driving and it looks like there was a really bad storm, branches everywhere, that kind of thing. And then suddenly it’s 10,000 times worse and you can actually see, in a very clear line, how the tornado moved through, taking off roofs and things like that. There’s metal everywhere, and insulation from houses, and trees and power lines down. It’s… I don’t know.

So I needed a comforting dinner. I also needed something filling because I did a “Rep Recycle” class at the gym which made me feel basically like a puke bucket should’ve been included on the list of equipment needed for the class, along with a step, two sets of weights, a mat, and a barbell. Seriously. That’s a lot of equipment. And I’m clumsy. So I needed this

I had a better picture but I accidentally deleted it and by that time things didn’t look very photogenic. Here’s a stuffed baked potato with some ground turkey breast, salsa, a little cheddar, and some sour cream. Kale chips and broccoli on the side. Multiply that serving by two because I went back to finish off the veggies.

I’m off to try to relax now.

Storm blogging

June 5, 2008

Last night was kind of busy, so I didn’t post. Tonight was kind of TOTALLY RIDICULOUSLY NUTS. But I’m posting. Because I know you care.

Last night I made another barley risotto, this one with summer vegetables and goat cheese. I also baked a pasta dish for a co-worker who just had a little girl, so by the time they were both finished I was so hot that I actually had to check and make sure that my person wasn’t on fire. So, I wasn’t that hungry. I made a smaller serving of the pasta dish for Matt to taste-test, so I picked at that and then ate some risotto and a salad:

The return of the monkey plate.

Here are some things you should know about me:

  1. If I have my hair pulled back and I’m not at the gym, that means that I Officially Mean Business and am probably doing some kind of web design and will likely have a migraine when I get done.
  2. If I am wearing shorts and I’m not at the gym, then I am… actually, no. That doesn’t happen.
  3. If I am using the monkey plate, I am in a bad mood.

I’ll try to think of a few more to really illuminate these dark corners of my Self.

Here’s the pasta I baked for my co-worker:

I hope she likes it.

Today was ridiculous. We had a tornado watch and then a fire alarm at work, and I had to herd people out of the building and then guard the door so that they wouldn’t go back in. Seriously, you have no idea how much people love a library until you tell them they can’t go in.

Then the tornado watch was supplemented by a severe thunderstorm warning and I booked it home, and managed to be here for about five minutes before the tornado sirens went off. Now, we don’t have a basement. Or, there’s one in our building but we don’t have access to it, and I obviously wasn’t about to go to critterville next door. So, anyway, I ran two blocks to this old hotel that is now a restaurant and apartments and hung out in the basement with a nice chick who had a weather radio and a few other people, including Ellen from work. All of the idiot people eating in the fancy restaurant were just standing by the windows. TORNADO WARNING, PEOPLE. One touched down pretty close to here, but we were spared. For now. If you’ve been watching the weather, you know that there’s a huge swath of storms from the Dakotas down to Texas, and, lucky us! We’re in it.

So I had some risotto and some bread and now I’m going to obsessively hit refresh on the six weather websites I have open.

If you never hear from me again, well, just know I took a Clif bar with me as I sought shelter.


June 2, 2008

Wow, what an inspired post title. I bet you’re all “NOW I remember why I read this blog.”

Today was dramatic. I knew it was supposed to storm, and I went into a meeting at 9 and the sky was kind of cloudy and weird. When I got out of my meeting at 10, the sky was totally black. Seriously, I was confused about why I was working in the middle of the night (I only had one cup of coffee this morning so I wasn’t totally alert). I called Matt because it was raining really hard and I wanted him to check the new air conditioner to make sure no water was coming in. While we were on the phone, we could hear the tornado sirens, but they test them on Mondays, so no big deal.

Then, the building manager at work came on the PA and was all “THIS IS NOT A DRILL, GO TO THE FIRST FLOOR.” And so, of course, I freaked out and called Matt back and said “THIS IS NOT A DRILL. GO TO THE BATHROOM. IT IS NOT A TEST. GO TO THE BATHROOM!” The bathroom is the safest place in our apartment during a tornado, in case that wasn’t clear. Then, it turns out that they were running the tornado sirens because it was hailing so badly and they wanted people to stay away from their windows. Softball-sized hail or something ridiculous.

Right now, my entire family is saying “MOVE BACK TO NORTH CAROLINA.”

Anyway, I went to kickboxing after work and it was so hardcore that I was really afraid someone might have to scrape me up off the floor at the end. So, I was really hungry and wanted something that would fill me up. So, here are some bean and avocado enchiladas from Eat, Drink, and Be Vegan:

You may not be able to tell, but they kind of fell apart. But it didn’t matter, because they were some kind of awesome. Pinto beans, mushrooms, cashews, onions, and some mashed avocado. I used much less avocado than the recipe called for (like 3/4 of one instead of two). That was a smart move, because otherwise it never would have fit in the 12 tortillas I had left. Also, it meant I had room for dessert.

Then, we went to do laundry in the basement of the house next door, and while we were loading the machine, something totally started MAKING NOISE AND MOVING in the garbage can. I can’t even begin to imagine. So, being mature and tough, I ran away and screamed “take the laundry out, TAKE IT OUT.” And then I had to wash stuff in the sink.

Luckily, I rediscovered my jar of Nutella when I was looking for pinto beans, so I turned to it for comfort in my time of stress.

And now I’m going to go read a report about Integrated Library Systems.