Archive for December, 2011

The Year 2011

I’m not going to lie. I’ve been treating 2011 like an ugly stepchild. If I had to name the best year I’ve had, in my memory, it would be 2009. I feel like everything kind of came together in 2009 and it’s just been downhill from there.

But, in looking at pictures to write this post I realized I had a pretty rocking 2011. It was certainly backloaded (which makes my idea that it wasn’t good even more strange), but I did some amazing things and spent time with some amazing people.



I went to the rodeo in Madison Square Garden. It wasn’t really the rodeo, it was something about bull riders. They prayed before they started. It was fantastic.


I got an iPhone. It changed my life.


I went to the US vs. Argentina soccer game. And all I got was this shitty picture on my brand new iPhone.

I re-did my bedroom!



I went to see the Cherry Blossoms at the Brooklyn Botanical Garden for the first time (pretty crazy since I had been living in Brooklyn for 4 years).


I throw a Royal Wedding party, complete with cupcakes my friend Laura and I made for a bake-off at work.


Champagne at 5am before going to work to toast Will and Kate, what’s better?



I ran a 5K, my first road race in over a year.


I went wine tasting on Long Island.



I went to visit my friend Natalie in Cambridge.


We went to see the USA vs. Spain soccer match and road the train with these crazy Spanish fans.


The US lost. Shocking. Not.


I attended my friend Elisa’s wedding celebration. And made fascinators with Laura for the occasion.


As part of a work trip I drove from Amarillo, TX to Dallas, TX. It was like nothing I’d ever experienced and I loved every minute of it.


In Dallas I went to visit the Texas Book Depository. Then I got really wasted and did things I probably shouldn’t have in downtown Dallas. But I had fun!



I went bike riding on Governors Island.


I paid my second visit to Portland, OR to visit my grandparents, uncle, aunt, and cousins. I went on an amazing Brew Bus tour.


I also visited the Spruce Goose while in OR.


And Fort Vancouver.



I took my second trip to Austin, TX. And experienced the hottest weather I hope to ever experience.


I also did a self-curated Friday Night Lights tour. It was one of the highlights of my year.


I went back to Governors Island and went swinging.


And visited a Civil War reenactment on Governors Island.


Ashley and I took our second trip to the Western and Southern Open in Cincinnati. And got to do our second coin toss.


I got some great photos.


And some less great ones.


And probably the best tennis photo I’ve ever taken. (Total mistake)


We had an earthquake in NYC.


I attended the US Open (duh)


I really like this photo.


Hello Giles, that was a great 5-set match.


Poor Flavia lost.



I went to a party and 7 World Trade Center and saw the most spectacular views.


And very sad views.


I attended my fourth Vendy Awards.


I went to the Black Eyed Peas concert in Central Park.


Where I got completely soaked.


I started taking kickboxing classes (the only photo I could find to demonstrate this was this one of the bruises on my shin from kickboxing).



I went to a screening of Martin Scorcese’s George Harrison documentary at HBO headquarters.

I went to the Sheep and Wool Festival in upstate NY.


I won my company’s Darth Paper origami competition.

I visited my Alma Mater.

I saw my college roommate get married in an absolutely gorgeous ceremony.

And got to catch up with great college friends.

I was a Macy’s balloon handler for Halloween.


I blew my vuvuzela at the NY Marathon.

I marched in my second Macy*s Thanksgiving Day Parade (with the Wimpy Kid balloon, not with Buzz :()


I paid another visit to Amarillo, TX

I made a pin the heart on the Grinch game for me and my roommate’s Christmas party.

I attended my 5th holiday party at my company!

I made Ugly Christmas sweaters with Amy based on the Hallmark snowmen my mother buys me.

My family paid our annual Christmas Eve visit to the Montauk Lighthouse.

I made my family’s traditional Christmas tree cake.


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December 30, 2011

I started off my day with a run. It was unseasonably warm today.

Sadly RunKeeper malfunctioned. I did not run 3.27 miles in 31:12. Back in the day, absolutely, now? No way. It kind of sucks because I was running really fast and I think it could have been my fasted run in a while. Damn you, RunKeeper.

I came home, took the dogs for a walk, ate breakfast, watched House Hunters, took a shower and then ventured out into civilization. I say ventured out into civilization because I hadn’t left my parents’ house, except to walk the dogs and go running, since Saturday. Talking to humans that weren’t my parents or brother was weird. Just kidding. It’s kind of worrisome how easily I could apparently because a hermit.

I was excited to go out because I got to wear my new boots hadn’t been out in a while.


I went to Target, Michael’s (INSANE lines), and to get a slice of pizza and garlic knots (my favorite thing ever).

Sophie and her pizza crust

Sophie guarded my last piece of pizza.

Then I watched more House Hunters, purchased the second season of Mistresses from Amazon, made my family dinner, and watched more House Hunters.

So pretty much the ideal day for a semi-hermit.

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I recently learned how to knit. I’ll have to do a longer post about it, but for now I wanted to share my latest project.

It’s a hat for me. Pattern from here. I think I should have made it a little longer. But I have a really large head. Otherwise I really like it. And it was a quick and easy project.

Too bad it will ruin my hair when I wear it.

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Running and I have a complicated relationship. In the spring of 2009 my friend Laura and I decided to do the Couch to 5K program. We finished it during the summer and I ran my first 5K in August of 2009. After that I was hooked on running. In the fall of 2009 my ankle started swelling (it wasn’t painful) and I went to see a doctor who told me my leg muscles were too tight and were squeezing on the tendon and that I shouldn’t run.

I did physical therapy for a while, decided it was a waste, and went back to running. And my ankle never swelled again (KNOCK ON WOOD). I ran a 10-mile race in February 2010 and a half marathon in April 2010. It was fully my intention to keep running, but my knees started bothering me, the summer got really hot, and I stopped.

I started running again in the fall of 2010, ran for about 2 months, worked myself back up to 5 miles at a time, grew bored and stopped. I picked up running again in spring 2011 and ran about twice a week until August 2011 (I even ran another 5K).

Once I started taking kickboxing classes this past September running didn’t really fit into my schedule. But a few weeks ago I had the urge the run, so one Sunday I just went. And, to my surprise, I ran 3 miles without stopping. I ran again a week and a half later and again did 3 miles without stopping. Since I’m at my parents’ house for the Christmas break the only cardio I can really do is running. I went running the day after Christmas and I felt like a slow, slow person full of chicken, mashed potatoes, and cake.

I went running today and I felt great. I ran the fasted 3 miles I’ve run since July.

Although I did take two picture breaks. Running by my parents’ is really pretty (and deserted).

I really like that I can see a smidge of water (when I went onto someone’s private property).

And I also really like this cemetery.

If you can’t read it this guy died in 1860 at 88 years old (may we all be so lucky!).

He lived to be 72, 1 month, and 17 days.

I think this is my favorite monument. It says this gentlemen was a soldier of the American Revolution. Pretty cool.

As far as I can tell there’s no gate to get into the cemetery. I’d love to have a closer look at the graves. Maybe I should climb through the fence one day?

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Buffalo Chicken Pizza

One of my favorite things to make is buffalo chicken pizza. I first got the idea to make it from Carrots ‘N Cake and I first made it around this time two years ago.

Since then, when I come to my parents’ house (I don’t usually cook meat in my apartment), I like to make the pizza. It used to be great because I could share it with my brother, but my brother is now a vegetarian so I am stuck eating all the pizza by myself. Too bad.

I was especially excited to cook it today because my parents got me a pizza pan for Christmas.

Pizza pan

My whole reason for making this pizza was the leftover chicken I had from Christmas. I wanted chicken on Christmas, but, since my mom is a vegan and my dad and brother are vegetarians, no one else wanted chicken. So I roasted a small chicken. And had lots left over.

First, I made the dough.

Pizza dough

Recipe from Eat, Live, Run.

Because my parents’ house is so cold (my bedroom rarely gets above 64 degrees) I had to turn the oven on its lowest temperature, heat it up, and then put the dough in there it rise.

Then, as the dough was rising, I stewed my chicken in buffalo sauce and shredded it once it had been in the sauce for a while.


Next, after the dough rose for about an hour, I put the pizza pan in the oven and heated it to 450 degrees.

I always suck at transferring the pizza to the pan so I decided I would just lay everything out and then quickly put it all together on the pan and then pop it all back in the oven.

And then I had a delicious pizza!

Add some green beans and I had the perfect dinner.

If you’re crazy enough to try my recipe at home…

1. Roll out a ball of pizza dough (either home made or store bought)
2. Cook chicken (or reheat already cooked chicken) in about 1/2 cup of buffalo sauce
3. Put a thin layer, probably around 1/2 or 3/4 cup, of blue cheese dressing on as the sauce
4. Put chicken that’s been cooking in buffalo sauce on top of the dressing
5. Put mozzarella cheese (about 1 cup) on top of the chicken
6. Sprinkle with blue cheese crumbles
7. Cook for 8-10 minutes at 450 degrees
8. Remove from oven, let rest for a couple of minutes, and enjoy!

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Amarillo IV

I came down to Amarillo yesterday for the fourth time. This was a pretty quick and uneventful trip. We landed an hour early in Dallas which gave me time t sit and have a margarita.


We landed in Amarillo right around 6 and I quickly picked up my car and attempted to find Blue Sky Burger. Unfortunately my GPS decided not to find anything so it took me a few attempts.


I headed over to the hotel ate dinner, and watched TV for the rest of the night.

I went to my appointments on Thursday morning and then went to Rudy’s for lunch. I had a few small things to eat, but my favorite by far was the Green Chile Stew. It was so good, I wish I had gotten more.


I headed over to the airport, did some work on my laptop, and then boarded the plane to Dallas. I had to change terminals so I had less time, but I picked up some dinner and then waited for my plane back to NYC. We landed at Newark right on time. My car unfortunately wasn’t on time and I had to wait about 15 minutes.

But I got back to Brooklyn in time to make cookies for our Christmas party.

I ❤ Texas.

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