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Showing posts from April, 2013

Day 120: Cat on the Porch

We got a new cover for the chair on our porch. I only got to sit on it once before the cat co-opted it.


Day 119: Brian's First Day at Target

Brian just got home from his first day working at Target's corporate offices in downtown Minneapolis. This was the look on his face right after he told me, "It was awesome!"


Excuse the blur. I was laughing at his exuberance.

Day 118: Fire Pillar

Brian's parents got us this fire pillar for Christmas and we have finally gotten to start using it. It looks pretty stellar out on our patio:


Day 117: Patio is Ready for Summer

Brian and I have created an outdoor living room for ourselves complete with a coffee table. I had a cup of coffee while sitting out on our new patio furniture this morning and it was wonderful. It is so nice to see all of our hard work from last summer finally paying off.


Of course, it all came from IKEA. Most of our stuff does.

Day 116: Brian's Last Day at Optum

Brian had his last day at Optum Insight today. Monday he starts a new job doing analytics at Target. Here is a happy Brian, having done his last commute home from Eden Prairie.


Day 115: Apple & Eve Juice

I finally found Apple & Eve Apple Juice in Minnesota. Combined with Entenmann's cookies, this stuff got me through law school back in New York. I've been looking for it for years. Turns out, it was hiding in the organic section of the grocery store.


Day 114: I Heart Strawberry Season

I love strawberry season. Even though it is still cold outside, the strawberries have gotten cheaper at the grocery store, which means Alicia gets to eat a whole bowl of strawberries just for the heck of it:

Day 113: The Closest the Cats Have Been

Do you see that lump in the blanket right in front of Livia? That's Leela. Neither cat seemed aware that the other one was so close. This is the closest the cats have ever voluntarily been to one another.


I wish they would hurry up and be best friends already.

Day 112: Evil Dead Poster

When Brian and I went to see Evil Dead a couple of weeks ago, we both put our names in a drawing for a signed Evil Dead poster. Brian won. Now the poster is mine (Brian is not so much a fan of horror movies).


It's signed by the cast, director and producers of the film. That includes producer Bruce Campbell, who played Ash in the original Evil Dead trilogy.

I am so excited about this win of Brian's. I hung it directly in front of my desk at home, so I can look up at it while I work.

Day 111: Library Book Sale

Went to a library book sale today and snagged a pile of books for only $6. I'm pretty exited about that sequel to Rosemary's Baby. Yes, I have read the first one, and I have seen the movie more times that I care to admit. Haven't you learned by now that I am obsessed with horror?


Day 110: Good Friends and Good Times

Andrew and Nicole came over tonight. We played games, ate tostadas and had a great time:


Day 109: Snowy Day

I truly can't believe how much snow dropped on us yesterday and into this morning. That's Minnesota for you. Our yard was nearly free from snow a couple of days ago. You could see grass! Here is what it looked like around noon today:


Bah humbug. I long for green grass and patio sittin'.

Day 108: A Stressful Day Calls for Good Tea

With the snow falling outside and a stress-filled day at work, I turn to my current go-to tea. It wasn't cheap when I bought it at Byerly's but it has been worth it:



It's called Meadow and it is by Steven Smith, a tea maker out in Oregon. I'm really addicted to this stuff, especially on a cold day like today.

Day 107: Lego Office Tower and Bus

I built a micro office tower and bus out of Lego. I've been having fun building in miniature (for Lego that is):


Day 106: Livia Knows Comfort

My cat sure knows how to enjoy the finer things in life. Those things being a warm sunbeam and a crisp, white pillow.


Day 105: MinneWebCon 2013

I took a day off work to go to the first day of MinneWebCon 2013, a conference for people who work in web development, marketing, content strategy, etc. It was a whole lot of fun.



When you work in one office every day, it is easy to forget that there are other people facing the same issues as you around the Twin Cities. It was really great to be able to talk to people from the area and around the country who are passionate about web marketing.

Anecdote that stuck with me: At a talk by Veronica McGregor about social media at NASA's Jet Propulsion Labratory (JPL), I learned how important it is to know your audience.

When she created a twitter account about asteroids that pass close by Earth (@AsteroidWatch), she quickly realized that her followers were not the typical space nerds who follow most JPL launches. Instead, she incited a panic when posting about an asteroid that passed nearby Earth. She learned to always include the word "safe" in future tweets about asteroids. F…

Day 104: My Favorite Pizza

It was a quiet day at home today, capped off with my favorite pizza: Garlic Mashed Potato from Pizza Luce:


It has mashed potato, feta, garlic, green onions, tomato...so delicious.

Day 103: Had a Good Saturday

It's been awhile since I have posted a picture of myself on here. Here I am happy, right before I went out for a fun Saturday with Brian. We went to the South Minneapolis Housing Fair, Trader Joe's, Barnes and Noble, Room & Board Outlet, and Ax-Man. It was a good day.


Day 102: Brian's Truck Sign

Brian brought a bunch of stuff home from his work cubicle that I hadn't seen in ages. One of the objects was this super-awesome truck sign to denote the type of dangerous cargo carried by the truck:


In addition to poison, it has flip-signs for flammable, dangerous, non-flammable gas, oxidizer, and explosives. Of course, Brian got it at Ax-Man the mother of all random-object stores. Seeing the sign again makes me want to head to Ax-Man again to see what kids of random stuff they have now.

Day 101: Leela Looking Critically at the Snow

Leela spent the day looking forlornly out at the snow. It was just getting to the point where I was letting her back outside and then it snowed. Sad day for the cat.


Day 100: Tulips

A couple of days ago, Brian got me some tulips. It's a nice reminder that Spring is on the way, even if we have a winter storm coming.

Day 99: Broccoli Chicken Casserole

I made my favorite meal of all time yesterday: broccoli chicken casserole. I got to enjoy leftovers all day today.


I have loved this casserole since I was a little kid. It is surprisingly easy, but super filling because it is so cheesy. I've changed the recipe as I got older, cutting the chicken into chunks and using broccoli florets instead of spears. It is still the same deliciousness though.

Recipe for Broccoli Chicken Casserole

Ingredients
1 can cheddar cheese soup
2 cans cream of chicken soup
1/2 tsp curry powder
2 tbsp lemon juice
2/3 cup mayonnaise
1 - 1.5 lbs of chicken cut into pieces and pre-cooked
2 boxes of frozen broccoli florets, cooked according to directions
1 can French's Fried Onions

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit  Mix the first five ingredients thoroughly to make the sauce. Spread a thin layer on the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish. Put the chicken int he baking dish. Spread about 1/2 of the sauce over the chicken. Cover the baking dish with alu…

Day 98: Staycation

The key to an excellent staycation is planning. You can't treat it like any other weekend day. You need to make it special. I made a list of the places I wanted to go on my Monday off work and I had a fun time doing it.

I started with breakfast at Sun Street Breads. Went to Target, the Library and Joann Fabrics. Then I went to Half-Priced Books and Goodwill, buying a whole new stack of used books:



I also purchased a soundtrack for my day that fit my mood:



I went to all kinds of stores, and even voluntarily purchased a dress. No, hell did not freeze over. I had an excellent staycation, and I wish it had been longer than just one day.

Day 97: Lego Airplane

I got myself the second and third kits in the Lego Master Builders series at the Mall of America yesterday. This is my favorite creation so far, a micro airplane:




Day 96: Evil Dead

Brian and I went to see the new Evil Dead movie today at the Mall of America. They had a special showing of it in 35mm. Since when is 35mm special? It made me feel old.



My age aside, the 35mm screening was awesome. Instead of the normal ads and trailers before the movie, they showed old trailers, including:

Robocop 2CarrieHouseEvil Dead 2Army of Darkness
Apparently these trailers were selected by the director of the new Evil Dead movie. I now wish they showed old trailers before every movie.

What did I think of the new Evil Dead movie? I loved it. It was true to the original movies, but good in its own right. It doesn't have the dark humor of the original, but that didn't make the film suffer. I think any comedy would have made it painfully obvious that Bruce Campbell wasn't in this movie.

Here's the red-band version of the trailer trailer:

Day 95: Zach Weinersmith

Brian and I went to a talk given by Zach Weinersmith tonight at the U of M. He's the creator of the web comic Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal. He spoke about censorship and comic books, arguing that censorship does not lead to better art.


Day 94: Pillow Fortress

Livia peeks out from her pillow fortress:

Day 93: Horror Gift Exchange

I signed up for another gift exchange on reddit. This time, it was a horror exchange. Right up my alley, right? I got my gift today, and it was awesome.

First, I got excited just looking at the two pictures taped to the side of the box:


When I opened the box, it revealed a Freddy Krueger glove, a DVD of Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon, and a book called The Light at the End:



I am so excited right now. This was a terrific gift exchange. I think I am going to go don my new Freddy glove and start reading that book.

Day 92: Cat Nap

I am jealous of my cat's seemingly endless ability to nap:




Day 91: Game of Thrones

Brian and I went to a Game of Thrones viewing party, and we brought this cool, branded beer:


It's a blonde ale by Ommegang brewery in New York. It was pretty good. Yes, that is a picture of the iron throne on the label.