Strong Women and Whiskey

not for the delicate palate

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Location: Oxford, Pennsylvania, United States

I've found that if you speak as if with authority on nearly any topic, most people will believe you. This frightens me.

Tuesday, May 31, 2005


William Wordsworth
You are William Wordsworth! You get a bad rap
these days, alas. Many people think you
oppressed Coleridge, but there really isn't
much proof. You may have oppressed the women
in your life, but hey, everyone was doing it.
You honestly love nature, and admire an
aesthetic of simplicity and honesty. You love
Milton and human freedom, though some say you
sold out in the end. Oh dear. But you left us
"Tintern Abby" and "The Solitary
Reaper," bless your heart.

Which Major Romantic Poet Would You Be (if You Were a Major Romantic Poet)?
brought to you by Quizilla

Monday, May 30, 2005

Really..... I'm here

I can't believe it's been this long since I posted. I lapsed on the gym sometime after the last one, since I was doing so much I couldn't even think straight. I wore out my body, which in turn, wore out my brain. The day I decided not to go was a Saturday, the 21st, because I was having trouble putting words in the right order, both on paper and verbally.

So I took some time off, reset the ol' whatever, and am starting fresh. I am the queen of false starts. Plus, I hate journalling what I eat, and researching calories since I tend to eat odd combinations of things, ethnic foods and so forth.

So Thursday, I met with the trainer again, aparently I've still managed to make progress. I have a bunch of new exercises to go with my old ones.. and Jenni, I specifically requested he add lunges and show me how to do them. They are fun! One of the exercises put me out of commission for two days. My upper calves were miserable and stiff and just .....hurt. Part of that is I'm a big fan of stretching, and I really didn't get to warm up as much as I would like. I'll get there earlier from here out to do a better warm up when I have a trainer day.

However, I've lost 10 lbs since the begining of May and haven't had a cigarette yet. So I guess that's progress. I do think that perhaps I've gained every one of those pounds back this weekend! Jon and Jen came down. We had fun. We ate. We drank lots. AND went on a nature walk of sorts.

Doug went out to buy a grill (charcoal only, thank you very much) and comes back with something roughly the size of a football. Okay, maybe a bit bigger. Just a bit. It's absolutely great, seriously. It's a little Sunbeam grill, just like the big ones. It looks like a pod waiting for the Mother Ship to come get it. But it successfully grilled veggies, hot dogs, insideout burgers (cheese in the middle, yum), and about a dozen country-style pork ribs ( I made the rub and let it soak in overnite) the second batch of ribs turned out so good because I let them smoke for a while, the meat got that red color it gets when it's been smoke-cooked out the outside, and the sauce charred just enough. Oh, that's just heaven.

There's an article that ran on over the last week called "The Great American Barbeque Pilgrimage": check it out. I was in agony all week. I really, really, need more. The four of us grazed all weekend and there is a rainbow of empties in the kitchen waiting to be turned in for the deposit. I also made my Irish steak (Jon's request) for breakfast today. Recipe as follows:

  • Pan fry some steak in butter (well marbled cuts are good) with salt and pepper, maybe some garlic powder or season all salt.
  • When done to your liking remove from skillet, leave the drippings
  • add 1/4 cup of good whisky to the hot pan and scrape of the drippings
  • add a bit more until all liquid-y
  • dump in some heavy cream (1/2 cup maybe more)
  • cook, stirring constantly until reduced a bit and thickened
  • pour over steak and serve

For a special treat I marinated the steaks in whiskey for a few hours. Yummy.

So I've refused to food-journal this weekend. I don't care if it's "cheating". I like food, now I can diet until July 4th.

So, it was a good weekend of hanging out. We four took a two hour hike through Fair Hill which was fun. I wore my heart monitor to see how good a workout I was getting, just for the point of reference. I think it was a good investment. Played some frisbee, some of us *ahem* playing and carrying a beer bottle. One of us got gimped up and sprained their ankle. They shall remain nameless except for the comment that it's good they didn't drive down from NH. *grins* But.... at least they know when they're really looking at fireworks, eh?


I really wanted those pretty lights to be fireworks.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

baby kitties

i'm so disappointed.

my coworker, Nicole, was telling me today that they moved a trailer onto her property for her friend to live in. This is not odd, what is odd is that they found a baby kitty clinging to the insulation on the wall for dear life. It had made the 5 mile haul, they have no idea where the mama is.

Nicole's mother in law is taking care of the one kitty, who is not quite weaned. This afternoon, they discovered two more kitties. Nick asked me if I wanted them and of course I do. Especially because her husband hates cats and would just kill them. If they're not ready for tidbits of solid, I was going to try to work something out with Raven to take care of them during the day, since she's still home with Morgan.

Doug says no. Even though they're going to get dead now, and even though we'll have to give Cheshire back in a few months and even though by the time the kitties are out and about we'll be ready to move onto 5 acres... no. I guess all that room is just not enough for 3 kitties.

I know money is tight now, but these kitties won't need their shots and all for a while, so we would have a little time.... I guess I'm just really disappointed. I'm going to go to the gym now and try to work it off. I'm mad in a way, since this is just proof that decision making is really a two part process now -- I'm not too comfortable with that, with getting vetoed, but I guess that's how it is, 'specially when the veto-er is the one who's usually financing the operation. I'm not going to push the issue because I know that there are other places for my money to go, and I know that I owe him as well AND that his money is going to places that are not new kitties. I suppose that just really goes to show my worth, which is humbling

Also he tends to be the one to take care of the current kitties, but I can and do sometimes too. They didn't starve when he was in WV, I fed them, it's not my fault that he responds when they try to wake him. I sleep through and feed them when I'm damn well awake and ready. Thats the only reason he feeds them.

(more later, there is good stuff too -- b-day got better, day off was okay -- things are not bad, i just want the kitties)

Monday, May 16, 2005

the icing on the cake

i came in today to streamers and balloons and a present and a card from my office. that was really sweet and I love my patrick starfish sprinkler attachment that my boss got me, it'll be lots of fun. there was even a birthday card from the cats by by breakfast plate.

i think it's sad, in some what that my co workers made a bigger to-do about my birthday than my family. we went to mom's last night and she was finishing up a mini-meltdown. devin upset her. well, sort of. more like devin did something that upset her but in such a way as to remind her of something bad and something worse and so forth. so even when devin thought it was all sorted out ( and he was right to be angry for what he was angry for) the wellspring had been tapped. i understand this. sometimes it just takes something minor to cause a great big leak, especially for those of us that bottle up our pain, or anger.

and it has to run dry once it starts. so poor devin doesn't really understand what's going on and thinks that he has every right to be angry, and he does, however his response hurt mom, and he thought he made it better, but he couldn't make it all better so he's left with a lingering feeling of self-righteous confusion that tastes slightly of almond. and me? well I'm here. daryl tried to help which was good. but i don't think the boys understand how this stuff all works.

i do.

but of course i'm always the one saying 'no, i'm not disappointed' when damnit, i am. neither devin or daryl went out to get a cake after mom mentioned it to them. mom was tired, worn out from crying. i guess secretly i was hoping for a cake and some streamers and all of my brothers together. i wanted a real birthday dinner where mom makes spaghetti or my favorite food and we all have a good time, and she tells the story of the day i born. these are traditions that i try to help make happen, i wish they would happen for me. i even wore my new pretty skirt. it's orange and patterned.

i'm sick of being the one to make sure no one gets forgotten and everyone feels special and making the happy place happy.

....and somehow when your boss picks up your favorite cake it's really neat and really depressing all at the same time. I had a piece, too, it was 400 calories of pure guiltless pleasure. Double tiered strawberry shortcake with whipped cream icing (you know the really dense, creamy, whipped cream that chills hard and leaves a coating on the roof of your mouth..mmmmm)

I got a really pretty pair of earings that mom gave me last weekend since she can never wait until the 'day of' to give a gift. Devin, Daryl, and David all called. and Erica. and Kathy. and Doug might take me to the Australian place so I can have my favorite aussie desert. and he's helping me get Skippy tuned up, and helping my bank bullshit. so again, I'm just being a selfish brat.

oh, and I'm 26 today.

puff of smoke

it's amazing how fast good spirits can sink. i'm staying glued to my desk until D comes to get me because I'm dying for a cigarette.

have the kicky yellow skirt on today and heels. felt good leaving the house. Skippy's at the shop getting a tune up. it was going to be a good day.

Skippy needs $477 worth of repairs.

I check the bank account and find I have $167 in it.

suprised? a bit. D said he'd help since I wasn't sure there'd be enough.


......but, as I'm scanning the cleared checks, I realize the one for the trainer or my stupid heart monitor (which he insists I get for $80) has not cleared.

so that's $180 entering an account with $167 in it. Special.

I call D and have to ask to borrow enough to fill the account, not to mention... this is the good part, I'm such a fucking moron that I've not only drained it past what I had in it, but past the money that D put in there as an overdraft.

And I'm the one preaching money management to Devin. Sheesh. I thought I was getting too comfortable.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

sock hunt

so tired. so very tired. no gym this afternoon, it was my 'off' day, however I did hit the treadmill this morning for 30 minutes. i know me, and know i have to do something every day or I'll let it go. So instead of having a full 'off' day, I'm giving myself an alternating morning and afternoon. I really think I'll go to bed early tonight.

Doug is a saint, just in case ya'll are wondering. He spent 2 hours in a women's clothing store with me, gave appropriate commentary AND went and fetched different styles and sizes on request. Of course, I only went in to get socks.

I'm very happy broomstick skirts are apparently fashinable enough to be sold at a regular store this year, instead of just at the beach. I have three now. I love them. I especially love that if I'm going to continue the weight loss thing, they'll fit at almost any size I will be. Got four fitted tees, four tanks, three broomstick skirts, a kicky yellow knee length skirt, a green patterned circle skirt and a pair of kahki shorts that actually fit.

I'm pleased. Remarkably broker, but pleased.

....never did get those socks.

oh, and I'm meeting with Richard, my personal trainer tomorrow night. I hope I survive!

Monday, May 09, 2005


3:30 p.m. rolls around and i'm itching to go to the gym. i understand why they're called gym junkies, now.

got up this morning, packed my bag and was on the treadmill at the gym in my office at 7:45, after my warm up. I was dressed and at my desk by 8:35. So amped, all day. Doug met me for lunch (baked tater from Wendy's with chili dumped on it -- no butter) and go to meet my new boss. he (doug) looked all kinds of snazzy today.

I was back in the gym for some more cardio, weights, more cardio, crunches, lunges, etc this evening.... maybe from 5-6:30. I know I'll probably burn out on these long work outs but as long as I'm enjoying them, I should enjoy them.

I'm focusing most on my upper body for the time being, since that's what shows the most in a wedding dress. I can always wear some "supportive" undergarments if i want to (which I don't). I can really feel the difference in my energy levels, and in my flexibility. I can feel a bit of difference in my breathing and under the jiggle in my arms I can feel my muscles doing better.

I know I know -- gym stuff is boring, but I'm pretty psyched for myself at the moment. I'm also getting close to ready for bed now, too.

Saturday, May 07, 2005

gamboling gambler

Derby Day.... I love Kentucky Derby Day, except that none of the horses I liked did well. We went to Nottingham's had some food, some drinks (bloody Mary and then mint julep for me), and placed our bets. I played some Keno and lost, I should have known not to bet on the Derby.

I liked Bandini (who placed near the end) the best. I think because I like the writer John Fante, and I loved the book "Wait Until Spring, Bandini". Of course the horse was named for some sculptor, whatever. So I lost but I think that we had fun. My friend Kathy is such a sap sometimes -- in a funny way, 'cause she's pretty tough most the time -- so when they played the bit on TV (before the Derby) about the horse Afleet Alex, named also for that little girl who had cancer and opened a fundraising lemonade stand (which I admire the hell out of, just so you know) Kathy got all teary and wished we were back so that she could place a winning bet on that horse. I asked her why she would do that if the money wasn't going to go to the fundraiser, and besides who would want to bet on a cancer horse, anyway?

Doug that that was really funny. Kathy was not pleased. Good thing she got distracted or I might still have bruises. I love the way some of these horses have stories. It's a world I don't have the time or money to get involved in, but it seems so interesting.

.....anyway, so a good time was had by all. I'd like to wear a pretty hat next year and feel all Belle-ish. It'll be right around the time of our honeymoon, maybe we can go. Oh, God. I'm going to be a "Mrs." by the next Derby. That's wild.

Tomorrow is Mother's Day so I need to go prepare for that. It's been a non-smoking week, yay AND I went to the gym this morning double-yay.

Friday, May 06, 2005

what to live for

....... is the yummy dinner I had tonight. which I'm glad about and also somehow glad it was not pasta. Doug and I went out with some of his coworkers, it was really nice, I enjoyed it. good food, decent convo. i think i'll have dreams about my dinner.

crusty garlic rolls with roasted green pepper
a pork loin (NOT over cooked) wrapped around sweet italian sausage stuffing and then wrapped IN prosciutto THEN reduced in a currant demi-glaze with mission figs (YUM) char-roasted asparagus and green apple risotto.

oh and a flight of 4 red wines (pinot noir, merlot, chianti, and a barbera) and creme brulee (the sugar part was burnt) which I split with Doug.


which is why it's so hard to diet, however the portions were reasonable, and I don't really feel like I've overdone it. not like I ate a bucket of pasta.

That and I spent a long time at the gym today.

30 minutes weight loss cycle (3.4 speed up to 3.6 speed) on the treadmill (with 2lb dumbells in each hand doing various upper body items)
stretch -- cool down a bit
10 minutes fat burner low level on the eliptical
stretch -- REALLY cool down
upper body on the nautilus (biceps, triceps, pectorals,lats)
crunches on the ball thingie
pelvic lifts on the ball thingie
2 minutes very high intensity on the eliptical
followed by 15 reps each tricep and pectoral (low weight)
stretch down with medicine ball

I'm really big on stretching, I have found my left side to be much weaker than my right, however it's hard to work it since my right side sort of...well.. leads. I need to find a specific exercise for my lower left side (isolated leg) , also a good stretch for the outside of my calf and quad. i also need good back exercises that don't involve dumbells. ( to get rid of my spare set of boobs back there)

not smoking makes it so I can actually really maximize the breathing on my work out, it was wonderfull.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

little triumphs

I bought Mom a pound and half of her favorite sugar-free chocolates today; the good stuff, $12 a pound. No one told me that the candy store was right next to the cigarette store. I walked on by. Didn't buy any candy for me, either. Two small triumphs in a short space of time.

It's getting easier to say no, to simply deny what I'm craving. However, it's not that different in some ways from a life where I've often denied one 'craving' or another. Of course I've been very indulgent, too. That is what I'm paying for now.

I used to revel in this to some extent, I used to play the part of the fat girl pretty well. Extra sugar, extra cream (real cream not the fake shit) in my coffee. Dessert? Perhaps, I'd rather have an appetizer. Light beer is not really beer. That kind of stuff. I always thought it would be making a bigger mockery of myself to be the fat chick in line who asks for Splenda and lowfat creamer, or asked for a kids scoop of ice cream -- in a cup. Sort of like the one in line at McD's and gets a Supersize Value Meal with a Diet Coke. (now I understand that odds are, that person is probably diatbetic. they can spluge on the fries but never on the soda.)

I'm changing these things slowly. Getting more active. Still miserable. Still fat.

Sometimes I lay in bed at night and imagine my body the way I want it to be. Other nights I dream myself healthy -- I dream of running, being pretty, of being thinner. It's very hard to look in the mirror after that.

When I diet, I obsess over it. I'm trying not to do that. Since I'm already in "no" mode, I figured I'd try to use it elsewhere, too.

By the way, the no smoking thing? Sheer hell. The gum is making me nauseous and I'm not even chewing as much as I should, but it makes my pulse race and makes it hard to breath. I can't sleep right, or think right. Really can't think right, it's as if the jello mold that is my brain has all the little fruit-thought bits breaking loose -- and I think the cherries have been all picked out. Oh, and I'm and absolute bitch. I should not be working customer service in this frame of mind. So far I've managed to avoid worst cases, however, this could be disasterous. I didn't know that there'd be so much withdrawal, it's scary.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

<-----I have LINKS!

I have links now because EII is cool. Yay, thanks. I even added more because she left notes for my stupid butt in the template on how to do so. That just rocks.

I love StatCounter, it's the bestest thing ever, okay maybe not ever, but it's neat. Some one went to Yahoo! search and looked up "naked strong women" and got my blog. For some reason, this is a great source of amusement. I guess they weren't impressed since they haven't been back. Darn. They were from Southampton, England -- those crazy Brits.

I watched the movie "Sideways" with Doug last night, it was pretty darn good. At first I wasn't sure if I'd enjoy it all that much since it was in part, about a pretty dorky guy, and watching movies where someone is feeling or acting awkward makes me uncomfortable, myself. In some ways I suppose because I can relate entirely too well. The movie developed and I got sucked in. Even cooler was that Doug used to live in the area where the movie was set in California, so a lot of the places -- restraunts, towns, and so forth, he'd been to.

I'm feeling borderline poetic today, maybe I'll write some, I'll probably cook instead. The quiting smoking is going suprisingly well, almost eerily well. I have a class tomorrow and the next day for work. Pretty funny, it's a writing class, well...buisness writing. It's to teach me how to tell people to fuck off in writing without putting the company in jeopardy or pissing them off too badly. Well, basically that. Mostly to teach us how not to be liable since a verbal conversation with a customer is one thing -- a letter is another, we have to be blunt, not overly explicit, and really there are some things we cannot do because then becomes fodder for a lawsuit. It should be interesting... okay no, it will be brutally boring since the good stuff will be surrounded by many people who's idea of writing anything tops out a text messaging or quick email. I'm taking an extra large coffee (Splenda, fat free creamer) in with me.

Oh and I've lost 6lbs. Yay me!

Monday, May 02, 2005

Day Three

This is the third day since I officially quit smoking. I'm doin' the gum. It is icky. The direction say to chew slowly then 'park' between gum and cheek (tobbacky any un'?) until the "peppery" (as in cross between kitty litter and black pepper) taste and "tingling" (as in burning) dissapate then repeat for 15-30 minutes. But it leaves my breath minty-kitty-litter fresh which is SOOOOOO much better than cigarettes. But I'm gonna do it.

Had the new house inspected Saturday, we were incredibly nervous, ready to be told that the foundation is crap or something along those lines. What the inspector (whom I highly recommend, by the way, he was cool) told us was about what we knew already -- a few suprises, but nothing to deter us. So Sunday we had dinner with Rob and Allison (fireside fondue -- very very fun) to celebrate. Now to get the damned thing insured and the mortgage sorted out.

So we're slated to close in mid-July. Yay.

Doug and I were illegal on Sunday. We did bad things. Well okay, we split a bottle of Maywine between two WaWa coffe cups and trekked through Fairhill for 2 hours and change. It was fun hiking around the paths and so forth, enjoying the Spring on May Day and sipping wine. :D I'm a little aggrivated by my ex, Joe, because well, I'd always wanted to get married on May Day (whenever I did) but last year HE got married on May Day. This pisses me off since he 'wasn't the marrying type' in the first place, he could've done it in the middle of winter or something. So seeing as how I was with him for so long, I couldn't very well snag that day, too. It's just to weird. Oh well, the Saturday before works just as well. :)

I'm finally letting myself get REALLY excited for the house (hopefully not so excited I forget the wedding) but very happy. I think it will all go well, I really do. I think Doug and I will do well there and there's all kinds of places to enjoy being outside and to write and to have chickens and goats and a garden and fruit trees and flowers and .....yeah.