Awesome in August

Awesome in August

August has worn me out, you guys. It’s been non-stop working with plenty of weekending thrown in. I’m desperately in need of this long weekend. Let’s make it happen.

Islands

Let’s start off with my favorite thing, eating. We were supposed to take it easy on the eating out this month, and I guess we did cut down a little bit, but we still managed to enjoy some turkey burgers at Islands, a wicked strong cocktail at Hula Grill, some overpriced hummus at the Moana Surfrider’s Beach Bar, and a super cheesy pizza at Harbor Pub & Pizza

Hula Grill

We’re about to dig in to Season 2 of Falling Skies. Season 1 started off insteresting but slow, but by the end of the season, there were enough plot twists to make you dizzy. In that “I’m completely hooked” kind of way. I’m hoping life will slow down just a touch so we can jump into the next episodes. 

I read Unaccustomed Earth by Jhumpa Lahiri. It’s a collection of short stories about various Indian families who have put down roots in America. Lahiri’s writing is elegant and evocative. The first story was about a woman who had recently lost her mother, and I found it a bit difficult to get through, which should be considered praise. It definitely stirred up a lot of emotions. Then I was humming along enjoying the ride, and she managed to hit me in the face with a baseball bat in the last five pages. That’s an ending that will stay with me for a long time. 

The internet’s got me dreaming of blowing up one of my photos and making my own Giant Tiled Photo Art to hang in my kitchen a la A Beautiful Mess, though I doubt I could ever make it look that cute. Foodie with Family is killing me with Cheesy Barbecue Chicken and Bacon Eggrolls. Since I can’t escape Asian food in Hawaii, I might as well join in with an American version. And I sort of want to turn my house into a mall cookie stand and make these Homemade Dinky Doozies from Annie’s Eats. So good.

Greek Fest

We also attended the Greek Fest this year, and I ate loukoumades, and then promptly had to talk myself out of eating more loukoumades because they’re basically heaven. 

Pumpkin Spice Gooey Butter Cake from Awesome on 20

Now for the stuff you thought was awesome. You’re dreaming of fall and pumpkins and getting into Pumpkin Spice Gooey Butter Cake. You’re probably also trying to avoid the lingering heat by checking out Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel No Bake Cookies. And you really love Labor Day, and why wouldn’t you . Be sure to eat all the food ever and get A Dozen Awesome Labor Day Recipes.

harbor

I hope it’s about to cool off in your part of the world. September is the calm before the holiday storm. Live it!

Awesome in May

flowers and tree

May has come and gone and I feel like I spent a lot of time working and stressing. But now that I think about it, I spent a lot of time eating, too. I ate out waaaaaay too much this month. I’m not complaining, though my bank account may be.

We went to Sweet E’s for amazing waffles and managed to avoid being shouted at by the parking lot guy. We ordered way too much gelato at Via Gelato and sincerely wished we could eat every last drop. I pigged out on a greasy burger and chocolate surprise at W&M Burger, and drank too many martinis at Bar 35. I’m pretty much always happy when I’m eating with friends.

Sunday Brunch: Sweet E's Cafe

I also spotted some outrageous foods on the interwebs.

My friend Jenni at Digital Era Mom made these delicious freezable chickeny cheesy pockets she calls Pollo Magnifico.  I’m sure they’ll be magnifico indeed.

I really want to get my hands on this giant cinnamon chocolate chip blondie cookie cake thing from Take a Megabite. I’m not exactly sure what to call it, but I know I want to eat it. 

I nearly swooned over these molten chocolate and salted caramel tarts from The Sugar Hit. I can’t think of anything more perfect.

beach house

We also bought Emily’s ticket for her visit this summer. We’re literally counting the days on an app on Geoff’s phone. 33 days until she lands. It’s 33 days too many. We have a million plans for her visit this summer. Bucket list coming soon.

I’ve been reading Deathly Hallows for the millionth time and watching Upstairs Downstairs on Netflix. If you like Downton Abbey and you’re open to a more classic take on the master/servant dynamic, you should definitely give this 70’s BBC series a shot. The accents are wonderful and the plots are edgy for the 70’s. It’s a fascinating sociological study. We’ve come a long way.

 

DIY Air Conditioner3

You loved Geoff’s DIY Air Conditioner. Staying cool is a priority for everybody, I guess. You want to get your face into some Ono Hawaiian Bread Pudding, and you’re ready to spice up your picnic with Southwest Pasta Salad. Summer is upon us, it seems.

sunset

I’m reminding myself to take deep breaths, slow down, and enjoy life a bit more. I just ate a Magnum Double Caramel bar, so that’s pretty dang awesome right there. Life is good. Summer is here. Emily will arrive before we know it. Let’s get on it.

 

 

Awesome in March

Awesome in March

Awesome in March
March has been a bit blustery, but the temperatures have been rising. The sun started coming up before my alarm went off right on cue with the first day of spring. The birds are extra noisy, and it will soon be warm enough to swim in the ocean. March is the tipping point to something beautiful.

Wedding Shoes
March is our anniversary, and I invented the awesome tradition of putting on our wedding clothes and going out for drinks every year  to celebrate. A wedding dress is expensive and beautiful. I think only wearing it once is actually a terrible idea. We had a blast getting all dressed up, even if it did rain on us while we were finishing our last round. We won’t talk about how my dress was a bit harder to zip up than last year. 

I still haven’t managed to catch up with my bloglovin’ feed since the Olympics. Life just gets crazy. But people have been making amazing things, even though it takes me ages to read about them. This Black Raspberry Lynchburg Lemonade from Culinary Concoctions by Peabody looks tasty and lethal. Irish Slammer Magic Chocolate Cake by Foodie with Family is all kinds of crazy. And I can’t wait to take my grill to the beach to try out these Chipotle Honey BBQ Burgers from Taste and Tell.

Sandman by Neil Gaiman
We haven’t managed to squeeze in much entertainment this month, what with all the redecorating that’s been going on. But I have been reading the Sandman comics by Neil Gaiman. I’d be through it already if it weren’t for the horrible hours at the library. I’m not really a comic book person, but I’m a huge Neil Gaiman fan, so I thought I’d give it a shot. They’re definitely intriguing, and I find it especially odd that a series about the lord of the dream realm gives me such strange dreams. The Sandman is real.

We didn’t get to the movies, but we have been watching some pretty embarrassing TV thanks to the Hollywood Foreign Press and my husband. My Golden Globe Winner list has mandated that I have to watch about five years of Magnum PI. Lucky for me they’re all on Netflix. It’s fun laughing at the clothes and trying to figure out where on the island all of the scenes are shot. My husband has also decreed that we must watch every Star Trek ever. I wouldn’t be a good nerd if I didn’t agree to it, so we’re currently making our way through the original series. That stuff is seriously ethnocentric and outrageously sexist, but the hair is awesome. Balance is important.

Mint Brownies
And as always, I’ve been cooking and blogging like crazy. We pigged out at Eat the Street and enjoyed some burgers from Beyond Burgers Hawaii. I made my husband’s very favorite Chicken Parmesan. And you especially loved double chocolate muffins, passion fruit green tea, and mint brownies. I can’t say I blame you.

I’m ready for spring to take over completely. No more of this sleeping under blankets nonsense. It’s been way too long since I’ve put my feet in the ocean. The beach is calling to me. I plan to answer.

Awesome in February

February quickly disappeared in an Olympic haze. I struggle to remember what I even did in the few moments I could be torn away from the television.

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Awesomest Olympic Moments

I was so close to watching everything ever of the BBC Olympic coverage, but then I got too far behind. Things started to disappear before I could watch them, and since my OCD is what got me into this mess in the first place, I couldn’t very well continue once I had to skip something. There were some spectacularly unforgettable moments, though. It’s fascinating to watch another country’s coverage. I got to see this unbelievable final stone in a tie-breaker match for Team GB’s men’s curling team. I had my mind blown by this crazy moguls skier. I witnessed commentators in tears over a bronze medal for Jenny Jones in the first ever women’s snowboard slope style competition. Sometimes I wish the Olympics were on all the time, but it’s the rarity that makes them so special. Besides, I think I’d turn into a zombie if I had to watch this much TV more than twice a year.

Photo by Jessica of How Sweet It Is
Photo by Jessica of How Sweet It Is

Awesomest Grilled Cheese

Jessica from How Sweet It Is blows my mind on a pretty regular basis, and this month, it was with this Spicy Mini Meatball Grilled Cheese that had me swooning. Meatball subs are always so hard to eat. The crunchy bread and the gooey cheese. . . I die.

poisonwood

Awesomest Expat Adventure Novel

I’ve slowly but surely been reading The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver this month. It’s about a family who goes to the Congo in the early 60’s as missionaries. They struggle to get by as Congo undergoes revolution and then another masked foreign control. This novel is told from multiple points of view and skillfully crafted. I’ve always been so curious about Africa. If you love to travel but can’t afford to leave your house, definitely read this novel. It’s brilliant.

 Things You Thought Were Awesome

February was a great month for this sexy dessert, salted caramel pudding. Perfect for two people. 

You loved Triple Lemon Yogurt Cake, and why wouldn’t you? I’ve already had requests to make this again for the office. 

You’re just as fascinated as I am with Things British People Put Between Two Pieces of Bread. I’ll never really be able to understand it. It makes my husband happy. 

So long, February, Sochi, and vegging out in front of the TV. Hopefully, March will be a bit more active. I might be melting into the sofa.

Awesome in January

Is it just me, or did January take about a hundred years? It seems like a hundred years ago that Emily was here and we were laughing together. About a million things have happened since day 1 of 2014. No matter, I’m excited for the year of the horse and all it’s promise. 

Awesomest cleavage in the history of Hollywood

american-hustle-posters-sony

As part of my award-winning movie quest, we saw American Hustle, and we both enjoyed it a lot, though possibly for different reasons. I thought it was packed with great performances and great hair. Amy Adams and Jennifer Lawrence were both terrific. I’ve never felt more sympathy for a crooked politician or enjoyed a fake British accent quite so much. I think my husband was most in it for the constant promise of seeing Amy Adams’s boobs. I can’t even imagine what it would be like to have a body that hot.

Awesomest peek into Afghanistan

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I sincerely enjoyed reading A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini. You might remember him from his best seller, The Kite Runner. This is another rich tale set in Afghanistan, this time focusing on the intertwining lives of two women. The story spans maybe 30 years and gives us a glimpse of how politics in the region impacted the lives of average people. This is not necessarily a cheerful book, but it is beautiful, intriguing, and inspiring. I loved the perspective it provided.

Awesomest TV prison sentence

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This month, I finally watched Orange is the New Black on Netflix. It was just as good as everybody said it was. If you haven’t checked it out yet, get on it. It’s funny and irreverent and gives us a chance to examine how our circumstances can affect our perspective on the world. Beyond the pure fun of the plot, that was the most interesting thing to me. The characters are so easy to relate to. Which is kind of scary.

Things You Thought Were Awesome

Everybody wants their own Hufflepuff Bedroom. Why wouldn’t you? Look how awesome it is, and how easy! 

Tied for third place was Garlic Mac and Cheese which couldn’t be easier or tastier. Cheese rules!

Still ruling the roost are Parmesan Fried Gnocchi and Peanut Butter Fudge. Will anything ever unseat these reigning champions of awesomeness? 

Resolutions are dashed, but new goals are constantly being set and fresh hopes are always being born. I’m feeling hopeful right now. How about you?

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