Monday, December 13, 2010

Kauai!

We're leaving at 5:35am tomorrow and I AM SO EXCITED.

I watched a bunch of YOUTUBE videos this last hour of work to help me figure out just a few more things to do. I have now created the most intense spreadsheet of places to go and things I want to see.
I watched:
This Video
This Video
and
This Video

and I really hope our trip is just as fun or even MORE FUN than those trips.

Buuuut... I am also very nervous. SOOOO we'll see!!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

My Favorite Things


Oprah’s last ever Favorite Things episode was last week. Obviously my life is not as extravagant as hers, but I still going to have my most favoritest things. If I could give these to all of you, I would. Maybe someday when I make as much money as Oprah does…

Jane's Favorite Things 2010 Edition
1. The inspiration for this post. I really wish I hadn’t been so judgey toward her empire for so long. I didn’t even start watching until last spring. But, I’m hooked.

2. If I could, I’d give the complete series of all my favorite shows to anybody who thought they’d like it. I really like television, so this year goes to:









3. Natalie got me the most adorable apron for my birthday. And I wear it all the time.

4. This year I ran some 5ks. With obstacles. The most frustrating part of training was when my feet would hurt rather than my legs, knees, or chest. Chris and I found these socks at Marshall's, instantly preventing all my previous blister ailments.

5. After five glorious years, I finally got new Rainbows.

6. The best thing about Texas is that summer can go from April – September. My former boss gave me a pool flotation device last year. It basically looks like this chair, except it's a "lay down" style pool raft. Although it has since popped, I used it every weekend this summer.

7. Going along with Favorite Thing #6. Give me two of these, a paperback book, and I’ll be at the pool for hours. It’s even better when Chris brings me out another bottle and a hotdog!

8. Although there were a lot of delicious food discoveries this year (greek yogurt, Popchips, Four Loco, everything at Estancia), I have to give my Favorite Things of the year to the fast and easy Michellean Lean Gormet Buffalo Chicken Poppers frozen meal. First discovered at Mark’s house in Dallas, I now have to limit myself to only 1 serving a week. Cuz if you eat too many of them you’ll turn into one.

9. Austin on the Cheap, Groupon, Localiter, Buy With Me, 365 Things to Do, etc. I even setup an alternate email address to filter all the “deal of the days” I’ve subscribed to. I love it! So many new and local things to try at excellent discounts.

10. I know it’s cheesy, but being the first year I’ve cohabited, I’m making my favorite thing of 2010… my boyfriend. Aww shucks.

Monday, November 15, 2010

A Change of Season

Last week we had 80 degree weather for 3 days, keeping our apartment right at a steamy 78 degrees, until, praise the earth’s orbit, on Saturday it dropped down to the low 50s. The apartment temperature now hovers between 63 and 68. Despite that comfortable level, I’ve been getting increasingly hot during the night. When I first met Chris he typically slept with 1 fleece UT blanket and 1 standard bed sheet. That’s it! I, however, dreamed my whole life to have a plush down comforter on my grown-up sized bed. Thus, for Christmas last year, we invested in my ideal bedding. Although this created a luxurious chamber to sleep, it also made me really ridiculously hot. I thought I’d adjust, but the problem persisted. So, I thought it was logical to just remove the duvet cover and sleep with a sheet and the down comforter. Sadly, this leaves the nice (and expensive) comforter open to germs, dust mites, sleep stains, and the need for frequent washing. So, on Sunday afternoon we journeyed over to the new 183/Mopac Bed Bath and Beyond to try and find a solution to my night sweats.

So, Chris and I are both Libras, and although I don’t follow astrology, I blame our similar birth dates for our horrific indecisiveness. The salesperson told me there was no sheet or duvet cover solution for my temperature increase. Basically, we need to spend a hundred something dollars and buy a thinner comforter, or we are forced to return to the bedding of Chris’s bachelorhood. So, after 45 minutes of wandering and pondering, we returned nearly empty handed.

The icing on our fail of a cake was the $16 Yankee Candle we both had to have. It’s like, Autumn Bliss flavor or something? As hard as it is to describe scent, if you just imagine everything perfect about fall (crisp weather, football, apples, Thanksgivingy, leaves, cinnamon, open windows) and then just tone all of those smells down a little bit, you have this candle. It’s jumbo sized too so I can cherish it greatly the next few weeks, and anticipate its return come next year.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Farewell 23

Last week I started writing this outrageously long post about all the bands I saw at ACL and how great they all were... but then I got really bored with myself. Yes, they were nearly all great and yes, it was a terrific weekend, and heck yes we already bought our tickets to next year's fest, but... that's enough of that.

This past weekend Chris and his boyfriends went to Nebraska. And now they're famously featured on Burnt Orange Nation. While the bf was OOT I was unbelievably productive. Proof:

and I absolutely do not believe this, but some girl sold her version of this bracelet on Etsy for $2.50! That is like a 300% profit. Well, if you are jealous of that buyer, as a faithful reader of my blog, if you want, I will make you one for $0.

I also made this wooden fish thing, but I just spent about 10 minutes searching for pictures of it online, and came back empty handed. I'll add one later, because trust me, you want to see it.

Oh, and I watched movies:
The Terminal
I Love You Man
The Social Network
Clash of the Titans (The new one, and to be honest, the first 30 min was all I could take)
Across the Universe
Chicago
Fever Pitch

and possibly my proudest accomplishment all weekend- my Halloween costume is finished! Glorious.

So, tomorrow is my birthday. Undoubtedly, much excitement will ensue...

Monday, October 11, 2010

Jane vs. Her Sinuses

The battle began about two weeks ago, when the 100+ degree Texas summer finally decided to move on down to the southern hemisphere and oh, sweet, glorious autumn descended upon the hills of Austin. Thank you 75 degrees for allowing me to open the windows, motivating me run around our lake, and encouraging me to wear long sleeves again. However, I DO NOT thank you for bringing my kryptonite with you.

After seven days of intense frustration, and finally brought myself to see an Allergist. I'm on some new nasal sprays now, but the feud continues, and it will through the end of the month. Bottom line is that I need to get an allergy test done (yah the one where they stick the needles into your back). I have another 2.5 weeks until the antihistamines I've been taking are out of my system to enable me to get the test, whilst I will do more research to see how much this procedure is going to cost me. On a much more positive note- I survived ACL, thanks to Afrin, Nasonex, and a baking soda/water/salt solution. This year's festival was more exhausting than I remember, but just as epicly awesome as always. More to come on that topic... cuz even though I'm still recovering, I still wish I could do it again next weekend.

Monday, September 20, 2010

two years of indecision

That's right, it finally happened. I am pleased to announce that after two years of wanting, wishing, and waiting, I finally bought this:

In addition to being ridiculously frugal, I am also horribly indecisive and I just could not bring myself to purchase a Crock Pot of my own. For some bizarre reason I kept insisting that I didn't need this little miracle of an appliance until I was married, or had a house of my own. Screw that temporary moment of insanity because at 4:06pm yesterday I strolled out of Target having made the best decision of the day. Thankyouverymuch.

The inagural dish little Crock Pot cooked was Creamed Corn, in honor of Nate's birthday and the Manning v. Manning for Sunday Night Football. Which brings me back to my last entry regarding the current battle in my life. Please forgive me, because I definitely did not give enough credit to that image below. I'm not sure if he designed it or not, but I took that brilliant picture from another blog. And I just spent the last 37 minutes reading this other blog. Visit FVG to really understand what I have been dealing with as of late.

Chris said to me on Thursday, "Jane, I just really, really like college football." This wasn't anything I didn't already know, but the randomness and sincerity of his statement was a really welcome reminder. I am trying to mentally cross Saturday off of our week's schedule, knowing I will have plenty of time to watch 90210 on Hulu and run my personal errands. This year he's joined an NFL Fantasy League in addition to his two NCAA leagues, thus... "goodbye Sundays" too. Oh, and wait, Monday night volleyball? How could I have forgotten what comes afterwards?

I have two choices to make:
1. Hop on the bandwagon
2. Find some more hobbies

In my efforts toward option two, I've fallen in love with this. Both browsing for gifts, and brainstorming for things I can make. In the meantime, I also have a ticket to Saturday's UT v. UCLA home game, thus the quest for my burnt orange sundress continues. As does the five-month long battle for my boyfriend's attention.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Labor Day

The start of fall, going back to school, college football season, a three day weekend. This year- Nericka's wedding! I guess it's actually the increased anticipation of fall, since TX probably won't see any of that for another 3-4 weeks. Regardless, we have another wedding to attend on Sunday. Nate and Ericka are getting married here:

yah, it's in Austin. We're staying downtown, for the $30 convenience of not driving home and ensuring the after party.

I'm also going to use my 3.5 days of fun (the .5 being the last week of my summer hours at work) to make many delicious concoctions. This week I've been craving banana bread, homemade granola bars, and homemade soft pretzels. Thus, a trip to the grocery store, and quite possibly a return to the Farmers Market are in order. We made two of those three things in HS Foods class, but unfortuntately those recipe cards are back in Kansas. I'll have to remember to bring them with me when I go back for Thanksgiving.

In addition to the baking, I have 3 or 4 more episodes of Mad Men before I'm caught up with season four. Woa, somebody in the office must be using a bunch of white out. or dry erase markers. geeze, I'm getting dizzy over here.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Hawaii

We bought our tickets for Hawaii. Permasave mode is on.



Tuesday, August 17, 2010

My Concert Resume

Taken from Austin's facebook note. and embellished.

-BEN FOLDS/Rufus Wainwright/Ben Lee: August 13, 2005, City Market, Kansas City, MO.
Attended with Laura June Ponath and Blair Miller

-SCHOOL OF ROCK AUSTIN: January 20, 2006, Redrum, Austin, TX.
Attended with Lauren Kessler, Justine Shaw, and perhaps other girls from Blanton Four.

-BEACH BOYS: February 17, 2007, AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX
Attended with Austin and Kerry.

-LITTLE RICHARD: March 24, 2007, University of Texas West Mall, Austin, TX
Attended with Lauren Kessler, Justine Shaw, and Austin.

-ALICE COOPER/Blue Oyster Cult: August 11, 2007, Sedalia Fairgrounds, Sedalia, MO (Missouri State Fair)
Attended with Austin, and (I think) Alex Bergman, Michael Hogan, and Eric Thomas.

-BLUE OYSTER CULT/Rockus Circus/The Krayolas: August 25, 2007, Sunken Gardens Amphitheater, San Antonio, TX
Attended with Austin.

-AUSTIN CITY LIMITS MUSIC FESTIVAL: September 16, 2007, Zilker Park, Austin, TX.
Bob Dylan, Wilco, The Decemberists, Regina Spektor, Stephen/Ziggy Marley, Devotchka, The School of Rock All Stars.
Attended with Hank mostly.

-RUFUS WAINWRIGHT: March 5, 2008, Bovard Auditorium, Los Angeles, CA
Attended with Richard Fletcher.

-FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS: April 24, 2008, Amoeba Records, Los Angeles, CA
Attended with Alex Yeh, Jon Cronson, and Richard Fletcher.


-NATASHA BEDINGFIELD, April 29, 2008, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno
Attended with the entire UTLA crew.

-THE WHO, PEARL JAM, INCUBUS, FOO FIGHTERS, THE FLAMING LIPS, TENACIOUS D: July 15, 2008, Pauley Pavilion, Los Angeles, CA.
Attended with Elliot Smith.

-HARRY AND THE POTTERS: Summer 2008, Lawrence, KS
Attended with Jonas Davidow, Colleen VanBuskirk, Ethan Miller, Kuran Bricker, and Austin and Alex Johnston. Hopefully I didn't forget anyone.


-AUSTIN CITY LIMITS MUSIC FESTIVAL: September 26-28, 2008, Zilker Park, Austin TX.
The Foo Fighters, Beck, The Raconteurs, The Mars Volta, Conor Oberst, Erykah Badu, G. Love & Special Sauce, Band of Horses, Silversun Pickups, Gogol Bordello, Vampire Weekend, Slightly Stoopid, Fleet Foxes, MGMT, What Made Milwaukee Famous, M. Ward, Octopus Project, White Denim, School of Rock All Stars.
Attended with James Stevens.


-MATISYAHU: November 11, 2008, Stubbs BBQ, Austin, TX
Attended with Chris.

-GHOSTLAND OBSERVATORY: November 14, 2008, Stubbs BBQ, Austin, TX
Attended with Chris.

-GHOSTLAND OBSERVATORY: January 30, 2009, Bass Concert Hall, Austin, TX
Attended with Chris.

-BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE: January 31, 2009, Bass Concert Hall, Austin, TX.
Attended with Chris.

-CAKE: April 28, 2009. Stubbs, Austin, TX
Attended with Chris.

-BRYAN ADAMS: June 2, 2009. Paramount Theatre, Austin, TX
Attended with Chris.

-GHOSTLAND OBSERVATORY: July 17, 2009. Whitewater Rocks Amphitheatre, New Braufels, TX
Attended with Chris.

-COUNTING CROWS/Augustana: August 3, 2009, Austin Music Hall, Austin, TX.
Attended with Chris.

-JOURNEY: September 29, 2009, The Frank Erwin Center, Austin, TX.
Attended with Chris.


-AUSTIN CITY LIMITS MUSIC FESTIVAL: October 2-4, 2009, Zilker Park, Austin, TX.
Kings of Leon, Dave Matthews Band, Pearl Jam, Ben Harper, The Decemberists, The B-52s, Coheed and Cambria, Andrew Bird, Flogging Molly, Citizen Cope, Phoenix, Bassnectar, Brett Dennen, Michael Franti & Spearhead, Girl talk, Passion Pit, White Lies.
Attended with Chris.


-GHOSTLAND OBSERVATORY: July 17, 2010, Whitewater Rocks Ampitheatre, New Braufels, TX
Attended with Chris, James Rexroth, Jaime Geil, Natalie Navar, Joseph Mattingly, The Woodards, The Wolfes, Hector, Mia, David Fajardo, Nick Salinas, and I'm sure there are others.


-DAVE MATTHEWS BAND: September 10, 2010, Houston, TX
Attended with Chris, Eric Weiss, Matt Probstfeld, and Monica Robb.

-DAVE MATTHEWS BAND: September 11, 2010, Dallas, TX

Attended with Chris, Eric Weiss, Matt Probstfeld, Mae Sattam, Mark Brennan, and Jessica Bush.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Mr. and Mrs. Frei

Once I graduated college, it seemed like everybody started doing it. This weekend I watched Charlotte and Andi do it in Chicago.

I met Char during college orientation, the summer before freshman year. She was the first person I'd ever met named Charlotte. In August, when classes started, she lived in the dorm right across the hall from mine. We ate breakfast together every Thursday- thus forming the Blanton Breakfast Club (BBC). As many freshman women do, Char, I, and the other girls on our hall often times discussed the big moments of our futures: weddings, careers, families, and places we hoped to visit. Charlotte was always, "1st: my career, 2nd: my travels, and maybe sometime... my marriage." That's why when she went abroad for school, fell in love, and came back engaged it was really hard for me to believe. However, after witnessing their beautiful ceremony I completely understand that this is the path for her. Andi is the perfect match for my friend; he brings out her very best. Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Frei!


In other news, Chris and I ate way too much food whilst traveling. I'd visited Chi-town with Jonas for spring break a few years back, and the food was definitely my strongest memory. Possibly the best pizza in the US. Chris and I also dined on gourmet French appetizers, Goose Island Beer, and some fantastic sandwiches. And to make eating so much seem slightly less painful, we walked nearly everywhere. Not only was the L tons of fun to ride, it seemed clean, safe, and reliable. Oh the irony, as my credit card statement brings me back to reality, we're moments away from booking our next excursion. Details to come if it's ever finalized...

Sunday, August 1, 2010

so domestic

If I haven't already explained- my new job is an approximately 5 minute drive from our apartment. My new job has a kitchen fully stocked with coffee, salad, tomato, milk, bread, and generally- lunch meat, easy mac, soup, chips, pretzels, etc. and almost every soda imaginable. My new job also requires a 40 hr work week- generally 8am-5pm with an hour for lunch. Oh, and my new job also has "summer hours"- aka you can leave at noon on Fridays. So, I don't have to deal with any traffic, I don't have to pack my lunch in the morning, I don't have to buy lunch-type of foods anymore, and I technically, don't even have to stay until 5pm every day. Because 8am-4pm x 5 = 40 hrs a week.

Getting home from work at 4pm instead of after 6pm has added a whole other part of my daily routine. Instead of coming home exhausted, I'm delighted there are still 4 hours of sunlight! I can now go for a run, take a shower, read a book, watch Oprah, and make a solid dinner meal.

At the old job, I'd go to Sprouts every Sunday to buy my weekly salad ingredients for lunch. Welp, now there's no need to bring salads- they give it to us! This causes one change to my dinner meals, as now our fridge is empty of veggies. So, yesterday I dragged Chris to one of the many Austin Farmer's Markets. It was better than I'd imagined. With live music, tons of free samples, jewelry, and PEACHES. We bought the most delicious peaches I've ever had. And a cilantro cream salsa, an eggplant, yellow squash, and a zucchini. I cooked the latter ingredients into some sort of Eggplant Parmesan/Baked Penne masterpiece that I will definitely repeat later in the year. The success of that meal motivated me to make a cheesecake today. It's still cooling, but cross your fingers it will come out delicious as well. I'm going to top mine with peaches!

Monday, July 26, 2010

A Week of Relaxation and a New Job!

Monday was my first day at my new job! I can already tell it's immensely different from Leahy. See what time this was posted? That's right- some places don't expect you to work more than 40 hours a week. I have freedom again!

Speaking of which- wow, how nice is summer vacation? I spent 7 days at the pool, on the couch, and running errands. And it was awesome. My shoulders may be slightly pealing, and I probably spent $200 that would have been otherwise avoided, but being a stay at home girlfriend is kind of amazing.

I made spaghetti, ham & cheese quiche, Chicken Paprikash, and yesterday my friends and I rolled sushi from scratch! I cleaned the apartment from top to bottom, caught up on 6 seasons of the Hills, and Jackie and I painted fish. What a week.

And now- time to bring in the $. LIM is a bigger office than I thought, and it feels a lot like first coming to UT or BVN. Once I get my direct route down from my cube to the kitchen I'll feel more comfortable. yeah- I have a cube. It's small, but I am eager to decorate it. Chris has a huge RX8 Rasterbation in his, so I might use that as inspiration. Suggestions for conversation starters are encouraged. Most of the office is Asian, but there's a surprisingly decent amount of women. I may borrow from Lauren's trip to the spa, and recommend that as a team building exercise. More to come as I continue learning the ropes...

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

time for another change

Ah, the blog starts again. A few months back, my Kansas friends were emailing one another discussing the idea of blogging. We all shared the attitude, "we don't have anything interesting going on... nobody will read it." Despite that, I really wanted my friends to keep one so I could read about their "uninteresting" lives. And, as Rachel and Steph started blogging again; I just had to join in too.

Another motivation is of course- change. My last day working at Leahy & Associates was on Thursday. The past month there as been increasingly stressful and completely unrewarding. My boss and his wife, Mrs. Boss, fired their assistant, my very good friend. Their reasoning was, "lack of trust." They caught her and their other employee, who's title is technically, Partner, IMing. "Mrs. Boss never comes to work, we should keep a time sheet for the hours she spends here." So, while Partner was away from her desk, Mrs. Boss sat down and saw the IM conversation. She immediately sent her assistant home for the day and proceeded to tell myself, the only other employee, and Partner that people should be careful with what they say online, and that nobody knows how hard she works or what she does for her company. Mr. Boss was out of the office this entire time. Once he returned, he quickly reiterated his wife's comments with hope that a similar situation would never happen again. The next morning, they fired their assistant claiming, "we cannot have somebody working for us whom we do not trust." As for the Partner- Mrs. Boss called her out being "completely disrespectful. So, F*ck you. eff you. eff you." Granted, I was not present for the conversation, and did not hear what happened until Partner called me that night warning me she was quitting the company first thing on Monday. Partner was not just a Partner with the company, she was also my partner. We shared responsibilities, conversations, ethics, and an office. I began job searching that Sunday afternoon. First thing Monday morning, she leaves the company- leaving two jobs for one person (yup, me). While Mr. Boss swore he could handle his partner's position, I knew within two days that I could not handle teaching my boss how to do his job. After submitting four days of resumes, I had two interviews setup. Unbelievably, within ten days of job hunting, I had a job offer in the mail. On July 26th I start working as the Receptionist/HR Assistant for LIM.

Thus, the third reason to blog- time! I gave my two weeks to Leahy on July 1st, giving me an entire week's vacation before starting with LIM. I spent the weekend at Canyon Lake with Chris and about 20 others, and have used these past three days to relax and run errands. What a perfect way to transition to something new. Who knows what I can do next.