Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Octopoda Equals Success

New Years Resolution: Be Bold: Last night I had Octopus, prepared in traditional Greek style. Result: Not bad. Thoughts: Similar to lobster. Though I wouldn't recommend making an entire meal out of it. Our waiter told us it was 'simply amazing.' I wouldn't go that far. But I'm glad I tried it. Made me feel good about all the other resolutions for the new year that have already fallen to the wayside.

Let's see...

Resolution: NASCAR Race: Still workin' on it. Result: So so. Not resolved, but not unresolved.

Resolution: Stay in touch: Definitely taken initiative here. Result: Feel great. And connected.

Resolution: Write a Cookbook: Haven't even thought about it. Result: Crap.

Resolution: Buy less clothing/Return what I won't wear: I've bought 4 new items and returned 2 so far. Result: Even Steven...almost.

Resolution: Travel some more: I've been home 1 weekend so far this year. Result: Hooray!

Resolution: Bring Miss Famous to the Big Apple: Don't even get me started. Result: Tears.

Resolution: Take the GMAT: Huh? The What? Result: Shucks.

Resolution: Go to the gym more: Went the first week. Saw all the newbies. Never returned. Result: Increasingly out of shape.

Bulls Eye

Look closely. Read between the lines. Do you see those words ---SHOP THE COLLECTION EARLY---finally some (more) benefits to living in New York (this time of year). Sale starts tomorrow here. If some of you hurry, you can still make it!
Update: You can shop right now on the worldwideweb. I'd wait though, cuz it's definitely not the whole collection. But it sure does whet the (shopping) appetite.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Who Cut the Cheese?

Thanks to an invite from my sister, Lane, and her boyfriends aversion to cheese, last night I got to attend cheese class. Cheese 101 was held upstairs in the classroom at famed Murray's Cheese. Murray's knows cheese. They've got over 250 kinds of unique, delicious, aromatic cheese. They've also got 5 caves, for reals---earthy caves under the NY ground of their store---where they have young cheeses sent to them to age in their own caves, giving them that distinct Murray's flavor.

We sampled 6 different cheeses last night, accompanied by drinks, bread, nuts, and dried fruit. If you look at the plate pictured above, we started at 12 o'clock and moved clockwise. Perhaps I will share a bit of the wisdom I gained last night. You will notice that we started with lighter, softer cheeses and moved to deeper colored, harder cheeses. This was done purposely to entice the palate, but not overwhelm it.

Did you know that from 10 lbs. of milk, 1 lb. of cheese is made? Cheese making is therefore a labor-intensive work of love and science. Pretty much all cheese is made up of milk, salt, and a fermentation agent of either rennet or lactic acid. The difference in taste comes from the way each cheese maker cares for and ages his cheese.

You should always eat cheese from grass fed animals (cows, sheep, goats). It is better for the animal, better quality cheese, and better tasting. It has a more earthy, natural taste to it.

There are many different kinds of rind on cheeses. Some cheeses are purposely injected with bacteria to encourage mold growth. Others are waxed and sealed to stop the aging process before they are shipped for sale. A good rind, in a good cheese shop, should always feel a bit tacky to the touch. Also, you should ALWAYS eat (or at least try) the rind on a cheese (unless of course it is a wax rind). It is the most flavorful and power packed part of the cheese.

Mold on cheese (as in rind and blue cheese), is good mold. There is nothing to worry about when eating it. It is all good, clean, healthy mold. Some kinds are even health beneficial. However, this does not mean you should let mold grow on the cheese in your fridge and then eat it.

Also, milk, and therefore cheese, is at its best in the springtime. Animals naturally produce their most flavorful, enriched milk during this time of year. This is because springtime is a time when animals give birth and need to have the best nourishment for their young. In order to take advantage of this naturally occurring phenomenon, some farmers manipulate the light conditions on their farms to 'trick' the animals into thinking it is spring time. Others keep milk from spring and store it (freezing) for use later in the year, to allow them a year long income. But the purists only produce cheese for sale during the magic 3 months of the year when their cheese is at its best.

Well, when all was said and done, not only did we leave our plates empty and our tummies chock full of delicious cheeses, but our minds a bit enlightened as well. We resolved that the cheese case is no longer a daunting and overwhelming vehemoth, but a curio wanting to share its delicious (and stinky) abundance with us.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Jamie: 101

1. I'd rather have appetizers and desserts than dinner
2. I love a good cry 3. I'm a hopeless romantic
4. I'm most fearless when I'm with Grant
5. I want to wear big sunglasses everywhere I go
6. I love to look at myself in mirrors
7. I wash my hair once a week
8. My favorite thing to read is a trashy magazine
9. There are days when I truly believe I am the luckiest girl in the world
10. I love Audrey Hepburn
11. I've seen seasons 1 & 2 of The OC 6 times...each
12. I spend 20 minutes in front of my closet deciding what to wear
13. I hate working out but love looking good
14. I'm a perfectionist
15. I've got 3 sisters who are my best friends
16. I've got 3 best friends I love like sisters
17. I love junk food...munchies mix, chocolate chocolate donuts, sodas
18. My biggest fear is failure
19. I miss my dog Miss Famous so much, sometimes I cry
20. My favorite animal is a lightning bug
21. My average shower time is 40 minutes
22. My dream job is to be a reporter for the NASCAR circuit
23. I wish I could see the world thru rose-colored glasses
24. The best part of my day is when Grant comes home
25. I love to blast music and dance in front of the mirror...alone
26. Sometimes I cheer too
27. I live for dumb fun
28. I want Nicole Richie's closet
29. I make great salsa
30. I bake a killer chocolate chocolate bundt cake
31. I'm fascinated by home/kitchen appliances
32. I love pictures of myself
33. Lots of times I get along better with boys than girls
34. I like bridges
35. I'm not as girly as you might think
36. I never felt true security until I married Grant
37. I love girls trips
38. Great sauce = great meal.
39. I feel a connection with/love water---lakes, pools, hot tubs, streams, ocean, waterfalls
40. Party dresses make me feel special
41. I love swimsuit shopping
42. I'm an expert suitcase packer
43. I love to play dress-up
44. I like to take tests...they make me feel smart
45. I'm impatient 46. I'm demanding
47. I like to take movie lines and make them my own
48. I'm a spelling whiz
49. I can forever remember all the words to a song after only hearing it once
50. My closet is color-coded
51. I always carry a purse inside my purse
52. I don't mind being short, but wish I didn't have to alter everything
53. I love the way I feel when I'm swimming
54. I love to watch Grant walk across a room
55. I get intimidated easily
56. My closest friends call me Jamie Anne
57. I never really know what I want
58. I always carry cash
59. I enjoy regular shopping but love discount shopping---outlets, cheap & trashy, sample sales
60. Brunch is my favorite meal
61. I can never decide between sweet and savory
62. I love pillow talk
63. I know I'm capable, but sometimes I'm unsure of myself
64. I like train rides
65. I want to be a jet-setter, constantly style (preferaby in first class, too)
66. I think peanut butter makes most things taste better
67. I get mistaken for Asian/Spanish ALOT
68. I like pop-ish art
69. When I find something I really love, I think of who else might want it too
70. I drink the 'sick mix', 1/2 diet coke, 1/2 dr. pepper, with a lime
71. I like being snowed in
72. I'm loyal 73. I'm loud 74. I'm little
75. I like sleepovers
76. My husband and I have a secret sign
77. I sometimes say things I don't mean, and immediately regret it
78. I want an english garden
79. I moved across the country for true love
80. I love the smell of fresh lemons...that says lemons
81. Though I love it, I don't think I'll live in Utah again
82. I make my bed every morning
83. I want to have my own show on the Food Network
84. I'm an invitation snob
85. I love sports...not playing, strictly watching
86. I'm a good citizen...just ask my husband
87. I'm a sucker for anything with a monogram on it
88. My back old cheerleading injury
89. I really like cars, I go to auto shows and watch car auctions on TV
90. I'm double-jointed
91. I like manicured/fake nails
92. I take on too much...I have a hard time saying no
93. I went to 5 different elementary schools
94. Sometimes my brain moves so quickly, I can't hardly keep up with it. I also have a hard time falling asleep because of it.
95. I go thru McD's drive thru and only get a large Hi-C orange.
96. I've never really liked my name
97. I want to be an old lady with a colorful gem/jewelry collection
98. I get worried when things start to wear out
99. I don't like going to concerts
100. I wish I could wear wigs
101. If I were a Crayola, I'd be yellow brighten things up a bit.

Monday, January 8, 2007

NY Minute

Last night on the 2 train, I'm pretty sure I met my Asian twin. Sitting directly across from me, she was just as diminutive and petite as I am. Her hair was long and dark, with sideswept bangs like mine. She had on green shoes and jeans, as did I. She was wearing the exact same sleeping bag coat as mine...I mean exact same one (long, black, quilted, coyote fur and velvet lined hood, belted at the waist, Laundry by Shelli Segal), not just similar. For the frosting on the cake, she had on a wedding ring that was dang near identical to mine. In the words of Seth Cohen, "I didn't know whether to be honored, or deeply disturbed by it."

Saturday, January 6, 2007

Christmas Chronicle

Just thought I should take down my little Christmas wish list that's been up for a while, and check things off. That way, I will always remember what a splendiferous year it was.

Home for the Holidays ---- we got 7 whirlwind days filled with family, friends, food, and photos.
Camera Phone ---- oh well, I guess you can't win them all.
Miss Famous ---- I guess I should have included the Babygirl in the first one. True Bliss!
The Nutcracker Ballet ---- I got to go to the NY Ballet this year, and it did not disappoint.
Ice Skating ---- So much fun, I think we might make it a yearly tradition.
Sleeping Bag Coat ---- This is more about survival than fashion, but I lalalalove mine.
Iced Sugar Cookies ---- Didn't have time to make 'em, but you bet I bought some. And some chocolate covered raspberries too. Hey, it was the Holidays!

I loved Christmas, just as I love all Holidays.

Wednesday, January 3, 2007


This is quite possibly the saddest day of the year. And I DO realize the year has just begun, but it doesn't change anything. Even if it was December, I would feel the same. I have tears in my eyes and a sniffle in my nose. I CANNOT. Believe. IT. The OC has been cancelled. I just read the official statement from Fox and tears welled in my eyes. How can I possibly say goodbye to Sandy & Kiki, Juju, Ryan, Seth, and Summer. They have been among my finest friends for the last 4 years. My reason for watching TV, albeit owning one. I feel as though we've just gotten to know each other quite well, and now we have to say goodbye. Sad. So sad.

It's like a funeral planned in advance. February 22nd. D Day. Dead day.
One can only speculate what the future will bring. Nothing better, I presume.

On a final note, I can only say I told you so. To Fox. To Josh Schwartz, creator of The OC. To everyone who thought Marisa was annoying and only talented at saying "Whatever..." and exiting the scene. I have cried about her death in every single episode this season. And I am not afraid to admit it, so long as it in small print. Makes it seem less absurd. It was inevitable that if Marisa died, the show would too suffer, it's own untimely death.

May it R.I.P. Rest. In. Pretty (people living the dream).

And may I, L.I.D. Live. In. Dvd's. At least I have all the seasons on DVD now, thanks to my brother in law.
Fare thee well, sweet friend. Fare well.