Oh July 4th, how I love you! I’ve gotta say I’ve had a pretty amazing week. Man, I haven’t had a real update in a while. I’ve been running around all crazy! Ok so here goes! Friday was awesome. I had a half day, and I met up with Mina for some girl bonding and shopping! She just got back from another jaunt to Asia. We had a yummy lunch at Maggiano’s where she attempted the zuccatto cake. It was enormous. I nicknamed Mina “Bottomless pit” since she can really eat forever (I wonder if she is down with Kobiyashi the hot dog guy?) but the cake stopped her. I was pretty shocked! After that, we headed to the Fashion Mall for some shopping! I have been on the look out for a new dress for Tim’s wedding. I ended up splurging and buying some awesome new sunglasses to go with my awesome new contact lenses. I can’t express how awesome it is to wear contacts every day again. We had an awesome time. I am so excited for Chicago this weekend!
We ended our girl outing by going to my hair dresser and Mina watched me get my hair done. My hair dresser cracks me up. As my dye job was drying, I showed her the amazing-ness of AnimalsBeingDicks website. This is so great on so many levels. Unfortunately, Hope showed my two gray hairs. Really? I am still convinced they were blondies. I can’t be getting gray hair! Ick!! Oh well. All in a day’s work. After that, Matt and I went to Barley Island in Noblesville. I’ve gotta say, it was really good. The Ale Emporium might get some competition since it is a microbrew about 5 minutes away. I ran into an old high school buddy as well there. It was kind of funny since she didn’t recognize me with blonde hair. I still forget that I didn’t have blonde hair back then. On Saturday, we went shopping for some work out clothes. Matt and I have worked out every day and making a conscious effort at getting healthy. It has been good and bad, but that’s how it goes. I found an awesome dress for Tim’s wedding too. I know that this year is the year of “Peach + Purple,” so I will have to see if I can pull this dress off. Even if I look like a clown in it, it was only $30 with an original price tag of $140, so of course I love it to bits! On Sunday we woke up super early with no plans. We decided on going to The Indianapolis Zoo for some animal-viewing. I was shocked that the zoo was so cheap! I am sure they lowered the entrance fee. Plus it was hot like Africa so all the animals were out and about. The new cheetahs were breathtakingly beautiful. The lions were super lame as usual. Matt got some great videos.
As I have said many times before, I love the 4th of July. We have a new tradition, and that involves my family coming over for some good food and then lighting a lot of fireworks. Charlie is obsessed with fireworks. Since my dad is on summer break right now, I guess he has been all caught up in the Casey Anthony trial. I haven’t followed it whatsoever, but he told me that she would most likely get acquitted and found not guilty. (Apparently he was right, and all of America is in throes tonight!)
I always try to make new food to spice things up in my parents’ boring food lives. I made the new watermelon + blueberry fruit salad that I am obsessed with. I also used my lavender for lavender butter & lavender banana walnut bread. You may be thinking- lavender, really? Well during my first trip to Seattle, we ate at the Space Needle, and they served lavender butter. I absolutely loved it and still dream of it. I’ll never forget Nikki taking a swipe and exclaiming, “this tastes like soap!” Whatever, I love it! I also love lavender cupcakes, so I must be in the minority somehow. So I bought some lavender online. Matt had his doubts, but he was obsessed with the bread. He ate the whole loaf pretty much. I gotta say, I’ve got mad skills.
Lavender Banana Walnut Bread
7/4/11 – It’s a good day to be a Knotts! My mom looks pretty chipper considering she was in San Francisco in the morning.
Charlie & Brody
**So yeah, the 4th was awesome. We had some great fireworks and nobody fell into the rose-bush this year! I love the field behind our house since it is perfect for creating small fires. In other news, all of my debt will be paid off next week. I can’t wait for that paycheck! Then boom – good-bye credit cards. I am so thrilled. Also, I bought Britney Spears tickets this morning. Albin and I will be all over that concert. She is going to the show in Miami with her mom. I am a bit disappointed in our tickets though. I got them right when the tickets went on sale, and I got strange tickets on the lower level left side. Two hours later, they were selling tickets on the main floor for the same price as what I paid. I am convinced that Ticketmaster hates me. It seems like the website has to do something wacky to me every year for a concert.
So that is the news in my world. I’ll probably have a ridiculous post tomorrow. I can’t believe Mina sometimes.
My mom is awesome. Thank God she didn’t wear her Betty Boop shirt… her hair is killing me on the cover, but her article is page 22-23. I used to be an assistant on the Indiana Nursing Quarterly, so I was pretty surprised when my former boss e-mailed me and asked me if I knew my mother. Too funny. I always get a bit wary when my mom gets interviewed. In one, she decided to talk about how I didn’t pursue softball in college, which is too funny. Oh mother.
Indiana Nursing Quarterly February 2011 – Check Out Page 22-23
I don’t think she has even seen Indiana University…. haha.
Gobble Gobble Gobble. I am a MAJOR turkey weight right now. It was so worth it though! I had a very relaxing and wonderful weekend! The break started off right with Assassins Creed: Brotherhood reaching my house just in time! I love that game, and I was curious to see how it would shape up after the bizarro ending of Assassin’s Creed 2. So far, I love it! I’m not very far yet.
Thanksgiving is all about family traditions, good friends, and food. Since our marriage, I have prepared the big dinner by myself. Last year Tim and Molly came over and this year it was just Gualdoni and me. It was very easy, and nothing went wrong, which is a feat in itself. On Friday, I went Black Friday shopping with Emily. We didn’t do anything drastic, and we encountered no real lines either. We hit up T.J. Maxx (and I am SOOO buying a new comforter there soon!), Best Buy for boy gifts, and Knit Stop so she could pick the yarn for her hat. She also MADE me go to the dreaded Babies ‘R Us. Seriously, that place just scares the bejesus out of me. There was CRAZY music playing (not Christmas themed!) that you would hear in a suspense movie. I looked at the cribs and other miscellaneous baby things just to gauge how expensive the stuff is since none of my friends have reproduced yet. Let’s just say I’ve got awhile to save for a bambino. They’re not CHEAP!
Later that night, Emily came over and so did Tim. We all watched the movie, “The Maiden Heist,” which wasn’t the best or worst movie I have ever seen. We then decided to play drunk Rock Band with my wigs on. Who knew Tim was so lovely looking? The beard and the Gwen Stefani-inspired wig will definitely improve his looks. Tim cracks me up! I can’t wait for next weekend where we will go to Mills and Tina’s Ugly Christmas Sweater party. I’m sure Redempta has some gems.
On Saturday, we were originally planning on going to the Oaken Bucket football game to visit the Wolperts, but that fell through. Instead, we went up to Fort Wayne to visit Gualdoni’s family. His aunt was in town from Cleveland. She is a hoot. We did the usual of lunch and hanging out. We also went furniture shopping with Gualdoni’s parents. Most of the night, we watched Whiskey play with Erin’s new puppy, Tater Tot. Yes, she named her dog Tater Tot. The dog actually responds as well. It is quite humorous. Whiskey didn’t like her at the beginning but then warmed up towards the end.
Sunday was supposed to be low-key but then morphed into insanity. We went to Fry’s Electronics to finish up on shopping. Yes, we go there all the time, and yes, I still manage to lose Gualdoni within the wall-to-wall technical gizmos and gadgets. After 30 minutes of being separated as I was clutching an arm full of stuff, I saw Gualdoni right where he was supposed to scream. I screamed, “WHERE THE FUCK HAVE YOU BEEN?” and a man NOT Gualdoni turned around and stared at me scared. Put it this way, Week#3 is here, and I needed to leave that moment. A security guard was walking towards me and I bolted. Great, they think I escaped the insane asylum.
After that, we went to my old workplace of Godby Home Furnishings to look at new furniture. We are in desperate need of new couches in our basement. What we have are hand-me downs and not acceptable. We ended up getting a lovely sectional on sale. I’m excited for it.
So yeah, spent a lot of money, so a lot of people, and scared 1 too many.
I managed to snag a copy of the new Rihanna and Jay-Z’s Greatest Hits for myself. I also had to Urban Dictionary what H.O.V.A. stands for. I have been wondering that for years but have always been unable to find out. I was hoping it stood for something really cool. Guess not.
Have I said it enough? I love my job! I went to Boston for work training from August 8th to 13th. My friend, Beth, and I were in training with 3 other people, so it was a great learning experience in such a small atmosphere. Luckily, we have all had previous publishing experience, so the training was pretty even keel. With my position as an Associate Editor, I will primarily deal with professors and Field Editors in helping Professors get their perfect custom textbook. I love it, and I am so excited.
During the day, we had our training from 8 to 5. After that, we would have the evenings mostly to ourselves. Beth and I took the same flight and arrived around 4:00 pm on Sunday. I have never been to Boston, so I had asked a few people for some suggestions. An old high school friend recommended Abe & Louie’s, which was a steak place. The filet? TO DIE FOR!
I had a lot of oysters, which was heavenly! My biggest want was to go see Harvard. When I was a kid, I had an old Harvard sweatshirt, so I had to see the place with all the hype. We ended up going there 2 nights since we missed most of the shopping on Night #1. Apparently all of the shops close at 6pm. What is that all about? Harvard Yard was beautiful. I really loved it and felt a wee bit smarter in my few hours of being on campus. I just love the atmosphere. Oh college how I miss thee.
I also enjoyed going to Modern Pastry, which was on the North End. They had this “lobster claw,” which was a pastry filled with whipped cream. I have had many delicious things in my life, but this really took the cake! I honestly slept with it next to my pillow. Mmmmmm!
Ummm I just lost all stream of consciousness since I saw a copy of the new Rolling Stone cover with the True Blood hotties on the cover. If I still had the Wall of Shame, I would happily make a large space available for this. I will say that True Blood has been a helluva lot better this season. The weird thing about watching it now? The fact that Sookie and Bill are so into it. Like those people are getting married. I am kind of watching them have sex. Like wow. Oh Eric Northman, I love you!!!
Speaking of sex, now on to my new girl-crush of the moment. After seeing Dear John a few months ago, I just have found Amanda Seyfried beguiling. Sure, she has Gollum eyes and milky white skin, but I just KNOW she’s a FREAK and a SASS. That is how I like my girl crushes. I rented Chloe (which was God Awful) but it confirmed that her body is slamming. I need a body like that. Speaking of that, I got a new sweat sauna suit, which is horrible and disgusting. I used it yesterday, and yep, totally hate it as I did years ago.
In other news, I have been working on my parents Christmas present. I bought a VCR/DVD combo and MAC software. So far I have converted all of our old family home movies. It has been great seeing the past. Charlie was so adorable as a kid. I miss when he was a sweet little boy. I won’t lie, but I have totally teared up a bit when I see bits with me and Phoenix. Thank God I outgrew the ugly duckling phase.
I am easily beyond excited as you can imagine! Last night I got dressed in my costume (including shoes and solar shades) and played Rock Band 2 to the Lady GaGa song pack. Yes, I am that girl– and I CAN hit that note! Lol, not really.
This week has flown by. My godfather, Uncle Brad, happened to come into town on Tuesday to stay at my parents’ house. It was great seeing him! He showed us lots of pictures of his grandchildren and of his recent trip to Mexico. My dad, per usual, was pretty buttered since his best friend was in town. In a complete sidenote, Charlie is now accepting of how awesome I am of a cook. He said it best, “Dad is usually drunk while cooking so he flips the food over when he remembers.” Now he knows why I never would eat my parents’ cooking and would go out to eat a lot. Charlie is OBSESSED with Gualdoni’s grilling technique and now wants to learn. So yeah, my dad is cooking BBQ chicken, and he puts it on this platter and takes it upstairs once it is finished. A piece fell on the floor accidentally, so I grab it before the dogs can devour it. As I am throwing it away, my dad takes it from my hands.
“Dad, you can’t feed the dogs chicken, you know that!”
“No, I’ll eat this piece.”
“DAD, THAT IS DISGUSTING AND THERE ARE 10 PIECES OF CHICKEN!”
Did that stop him? No. Seriously, my father is disgusting. I don’t know if there is even a word. *sigh* Charlie spent the night at my house so Uncle Brad could have his bed. The best part of the night? Charlie got a call from an Atlanta area code. Of course he is stupid and refuses to answer it to say, “Wrong Number.” The person doesn’t leave a message. Then Charlie gets a text from the phone number saying,
“This is Bette from *$&%$ Marketing. Can you change the spelling of the categories on the website? Please change rapers to rappers. Lol. Thanks.”
Charlie is convinced they think he is a Music Mogul. No. Ha. Also, should I be worried that Charlie wants my spare pair of Lady GaGa Fame glasses? He totally wants them!
“What will you do with them?”
“I will wear them in my car and blare Lady GaGa music.”
“Umm… won’t girls think you’re gay?”
“No, everybody loves Lady GaGa. Even boys.”
“Umm ok. Well, in my past experience, girls don’t like boys who watch WWF Wrestling or Lady GaGa glasses unless they themselves are wearing them…”
“Shut up, boys don’t like girls who read comic books and cook.”
Song of the Moment: Lady GaGa “Alejandro”
Babies, babies, everywhere! At the ripe age of 28, I am starting to feel like I am left behind in the baby race. I know people who are just beginning their families. Then I know others who are on BABY#2!
Let me start fresh here.
I don’t really want to have a baby. At all. No crying, screaming, kicking, terror-induced spine munching baby. I have always somewhat been in the minority on feeling this way, but hey, it’s how I roll. However, when I got married, Gualdoni said how much he would one day want to be a father. I have a wonderful family, and I had a great upbringing. My parents were older when they had me (age 30) and they were even older when they had Charlie (42). Also, I feel as if my younger brother was somewhat of a learning curve for me as well. I was almost 12 when he was born. Now he is 16. Sure, I would like to see what our child would look like (come on, isn’t that the #1 reason why people have kids?) Also, I am afraid of how the kid could look like my parents or his parents (shudder!!)
The largest reason of the fear of baby-dom is my health. With my crazy eye malady condition, I take Remicade every 6 weeks. My rheumatologist told me long ago that the drug was considered a “Rated X” drug, which means it will have major negative fetal developments for a fetus. Aka No Baby just Mush. With that in mind, who could even think of having a baby? The drug is what keeps me able to see.
I went to the doctor yesterday and had a long discussion with her about pro-creating. I told her about the situation and wanted to see what she would recommend. Here is a play-by-play:
“Well, if Remicade is indeed a Rated-X drug, you would have to be off of it during your entire pregnancy. On top of that, you would need to be off of it, I’d recommend at least 3 months prior to actually conceiving. Also, you’d be off the pill for that amount of time too. In that time, you would be on pre-natal vitamins and such. Then you would be ready to try. Once you are with child, we would recommend that you not take anything for at least 11 weeks while in the development stage so that your baby can grow. After that, you should be clear to take Prednisone (steroids) to keep your eye flares in check.”
I sat up and said, “So what you just told me took the entire joy of having sex.” With that, she kind of chuckled. She said, “Well, I can see your point, but that would be my first observation of your situation.”
Seriously. I think every woman who WANTS to get pregnant dreams of when she can tell her husband, “We’re having a baby!” with the mandatory cry, belly patting, screams of happiness (or sheer terror).
Who wants to be the nag who says, “Guess what? We have to have sex RIGHT THIS MINUTE so we can have YOUR BABY!” That leads to a terrible start for any baby. No joy, just bone. No thanks.
I thanked the Dr. for all of the information, and I was on my merry way back to the office. As I am driving, the Dr. calls me not ten minutes after I had left.
“Jennifer, I have some potential great news!”
“Oh, my ovaries won a contest or something?”
“Haha, no. I looked up Remicade in my pregnancy manual, and it looks like it is now a Rated B drug, which means that you can take it during pregnancy. We would still need to have a discussion with your primary eye doctors to see their recomendations, but I think this is great news for your condition.”
So right there, all of my bullshit is out the window. Good news?
Seriously, where is Nikki when I need her?
Last weekend I visited Swanny in Carbondale, IL for a fun visit! I was really excited to go because I love road trips. Unfortunately, I pretty much have to drive only when there is sunlight, so that is what has been hindering me for the past few years. Since it has been super sunny, I had no problems. It took about 4.5 hours, but it was worth it! Got to Carbondale, and it was awesome seeing the Swan-o! I saw her a few weeks ago when she came to Indy. Since she visited me in Marion last year, I always promised her I would make it down to see her before she graduated with her Ph.D.
So on Friday, we got dressed for the Carbondale bars while listening to “Marina and the Diamonds” (I will make you like them!) Swan’s friend/work lab technician, Mahala, came with us. We went to get a delicious ribeye steak and huge ass margarita. After that, we headed to a bar where we saw a hobo with a cane and a guy dressed like the Hamburglar. After I got pretty buttered, Swan told me we were going to meet a LEGEND. I’m thinking, “A Legend in Carbondale? Must meet!” She drives up to this parking lot with a man sitting by a hot dog stand. I’m thinking, “Umm?? Legend?” We meet Winston whom is an institution for drunks at SIU. He has a bagel stand with this crazy list of ingredients. Mahala orders this scary concoction.
One side has Parkay butter squeezed on it (whaa…..?) and the other side has cream cheese spread on it, with garlic salt, cinnamon sugar, bacon bits, sesame seeds, sliced cucumber, and a sliced Granny Smith apple. Then you smash the bagels together. Ok, I thought “This looks so disgusting!” but it was HEAVEN in my mouth. BEST DRUNK FOOD EVER. I mean, wow, better than a Purvis burger. Yeah, I’ll say it!! After that, I totally crashed on Swan-o’s couch after listening to her amazing song, “Penis in My Anus.” Swan, I love you! Haha!
On Saturday, we had plans to go shopping and visit a winery that I have heard many good things about. Unfortunately, Mahala was coming with us, and she follows her own time. I got pretty annoyed when it took her over 2.5 hours to go get ready, so Swanny and I went to get lunch without her. Finally we were able to meet up and go to Cellars de Santom, which looked like a divey/abandoned workshop, but instead it held amazing wine! This winery was definitely off the beaten path. We go inside and start sampling. Unlike other wineries, he filled the glasses up and didn’t scrimp. It was phenomenal too! He used a lot of fruit, which I love in my wine! I bought 6 bottles- 3 called Black Sapphire, which tastes like chocolate cherries; Blueberry, a Norton for Gualdoni, and a Raspberry/Cranberry sweet wine. It was fantastic! After my booze was rang up, the credit card machine died, and Swanny tried helping the guy. While she was bent over, Mahala decided to act out compromising positions. Hilarious!
I left pretty early on Sunday to make it home at a decent time. Overall, I had a great time visiting my good buddy. I hope she moves somewhere warm once she is done with school. I think the next person to visit will be Suzy in Huntington Beach. Oh yeah! Lol!
Other than that, I’ve had a pretty good week. I took Charlie to The Outback on Monday for a little bro-sis bonding. It was nice. I think he is finally out of his “I hate people” stage. On Tuesday, Emily came over for a fun taco dinner. Unfortunately, I ruined the taco meat since I didn’t drain the meat before putting in the spices. To be fair, I am always the chopper of veggies when Gualdoni makes tacos. Oops. Today I met up with “Running Vulture” aka Stephanie, who lived 2 doors down from me in the dorms in Windsor oh… 10 years ago! She bought a house in Noblesville, which is awesome. I hadn’t seen her in a few years, so we met for dinner. It was great seeing her and I hope to see her more in the future!
When driving home, my Dad called and asked if he could bring Brody over to run in my backyard with Whiskey. They now like each other, which is good. Unfortunately, there was an incident with a mouse. Put it this way… Whiskey found a mouse under a rock – my dad picked up the rock and Whiskey grabbed the mouse and THREW IT IN THE AIR AND IT FLEW BY MY FACE!!! I scream bloody murder as the mouse runs under my house. My neighbors run out thinking I am dying, and they see me running in circles screaming while my Dad and brother just point and laugh.
I hate mice. Fuck you, Mickey & Minnie Mouse. ICK!
Song of the Moment: Little & Ashley “Stole My Heart”
Tonight we got a puppy! He’s a boy Jack Russell Terrier fondly known as Whiskey. (Thankfully, Matt dropped the name “Garfanzo”…wow) He has been a good dog so far! He is very affectionate and playful. He hasn’t eaten much yet, but he drank lots of water and went to the bathroom outside. He is really smooth- I may have to knit the dog a coat. Matt is really good with him– I guess the whole Alpha Male thing.
I am so happy. I’ve always wanted a Jack Russell Terrier and now I have one! He is even sleeping in his crate- he did go bananas when he was put in there, but the moral of the story is that he is calm and asleep now.
Like the name, Whiskey? I mean, what do you name a male Jack Russell Terrier other than Jack Daniels? If he doesn’t respond to the name, I will need suggestions. Lots more pics on my flickr page.