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If You Give a Mouse a Cracker. . .

30 June 2010

Around 7:30 last night, I decided I needed to get started on my summer reading list. It was a nice night and Jeremy and I drove out to Barnes and Noble. IMG_3041

I love B&N or really any place that sells books.  My co-workers gave me a gift card to B&N, so I picked up two of the books on my list American Psycho and Breakfast at Tiffany’s.  My list this summer is as usual sizable; we’ll see how far I get. Here is my reading list:

Breakfast at Tiffany’s Capote
The Mocking Jay (release date Aug. 24; will be read in one day) Collins
American Psycho Ellis
Eat, Pray, Love Gilbert
The Unbearable Lightness of Being Kundera
Lonesome Dove (huge book) McMurtry
1984 (surprisingly I’ve never read it) Orwell
The Prince of Mist Zafron

I’ve started American Psycho. I’m a bit nervous as it’s supposed to have a lot of violence and my imagination tends to be a little uncontrollable.
When we got back last night, Jeremy saw a mouse in the kitchen. I am not opposed to mice who live outside. I am not opposed to them when I invade their territory, for example when I’m camping, but they are not welcome in my surroundings. Jeremy tried to convince me that the mouse had a British accent and looked something like this:

He did not have much luck convincing me however. There are seemingly a lot of books for children written about mice;I think I could come up with 1o on my own.

Since I wasn’t going in the kitchen Jeremy had to go in to make us a late night snack. Neva-Betta crackers and Cabot Garlic and Chive cheddar.

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Back to reading for me.

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Lesson Learned

27 June 2010
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Everyday you learn something new.

Today I learned that you should always dry the knives and put them away. You should not leave them in a cluttered dish drain and then try to pull something else out. If you do, you might drop this

point down on you foot .

 

If you did do something silly like drop the heavy knife on your foot, it might get you out of making breakfast. I think my foot will be fine; sure it’s burning and throbbing, but other than that it’s good. 

Lots to do today. We’re helping friends load their moving truck, and I’m supposed to bring dessert.

Detox Needed Here

26 June 2010

The last few days have been nothing but party after party, restaurant after restaurant, glass after glass of things other than water; between ending my job and friends moving away needing to visit their favorite spots before they leave it has been crazy. But today is a day of mostly clean eating – there is a very important soccer match at 2:30 where focaccia will be consumed.

I started my day with Jeremy made French press coffee and some toast. Then we headed to the Farmer’s Market. It’s a beautiful day in NH, but the sun caused me to have some major sweatage while we were walking back and forth. I picked up more garlic scapes, kale, and eggs. I had a big haul last week, so I didn’t need too many things this week.

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Lunch is all green and pink: Kale chips from KathEats, sugar snap peas, and watermelon. I think I cooked the kale too long because it was really bitter.

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The peas are a bit more fibrous than I had hoped for. I guess that’s what I get for impatiently buying them at the store instead of the farmer’s market. Too bad I’ll have to eat a whole bowl of watermelon.

 

GO USA!

Wow Time Flies

22 June 2010

Things have been crazy over the last week. I haven’t gone a week without posting in ages. Getting a new job sent my world into a tail spin.  Ordinarily this time of year is just so busy, but ending one job and starting another has made it even busier. Things haven’t slowed down much yet, so this will be more pics and less words.

Last week was really busy at school with seniors graduating and finals starting for underclassmen.

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I got to babysit this guy on Thursday. He’s one of my faves.

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Then Jeremy’s dad came to town over the weekend. We ate at Popovers for lunch. I had an amazing chicken quesadilla. The tomato tortilla made it taste a lot like pizza, which I liked.

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We took Jeremy’s dad to a Manchester Fishercats game. I love minor league baseball; so much fun. The weather was perfect. I didn’t need my fleece until the last inning.

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On Saturday, we had a graduation party to attend. I attempted to make homemade focaccia. It wasn’t perfect, but it was good. I didn’t bring any home because it was all gone. I’m excited to play with the recipe and get it just right.

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Jeremy and I finally had some time to just chill on Sunday, so I beat Jeremy repeatedly so we played some cards in the yard. It is one of our favorite summer past times to just chill outside, listen to music, and play cards.

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This week has been in full swing. I got my first teaching gift today. My student was so sweet to think of me.  My students are some of the more difficult ones to work with, so I was shocked to say the least.

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More fun times ahead this week. I have my exit interview on Thursday (YAY!), and there will be lots of hanging out in the afternoons with my homies.

I’ll be back to regular posting soon.

Ketchup and Mustard

14 June 2010

Tonight’s dinner was designed with condiments in mind.

IMG_2747 Spicey Mike’s is a local hot ketchup and well I would assume most people know Billy Bee’s honey. Which of the two would you assume has the high fructose corn syrup? I should have read the label before I purchased Spicey Mike’s.

IMG_2750 Billy is a pretty simple guy though.

Since tonight was all about condiments we needed to eat things that could be dipped.

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Homemade baked chicken tenders, potato wedges, and a side salad. I don’t know what happened but I seem to like tomatoes this year. Thanks Italy. Chicken tenders are so easy to make and so much better than the ones in a bag.

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Soon we’ll have tomatoes from our own garden. They are on their way.

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I thought the cool temperatures and rain would have slowed down the garden, but things seem to be moving right along.

IMG_2757 The lily’s are blooming too.

It’s a four day work week but I am scrambling to get everything done I need to before leaving. I think tomorrow I’ll tell my students I won’t be back next year. Let’s hope they don’t cheer.

Live Free and Wine

13 June 2010

Today was the first NH Winery Association wine festival Live Free and Wine.

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Overall this was a fun event. Jeremy and I went together. Last night I Googled what to wear and maybe it wasn’t the best idea. While I wasn’t super dressy, I wore a cotton dress, pearls, sandals and a cardigan.  Almost everyone else was in jeans.  I should have known better dressing up, even a little, in NH.

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At first I was a little uncomfortable, but then as the tent got hot I was really happy with what I’d chosen to wear.  The best thing about this festival was that everything was made in New Hampshire. 

I am under the impression that the planners had no idea this event would be so well attended because it was crowded. The crowds made some things really difficult like talking to the wine makers, taking pictures or actually getting to the wine. It was kind of like a mosh pit in the tent. 

At the entrance everyone was given their glass and ten pour tickets. Initially receiving ten tickets seemed fine,but then we found out you could only purchase more tickets if you went back through the line. 023 Going back through the line didn’t seem like the best plan, so unfortunately we didn’t get to taste something from each of the 12 or 13 vendors.

Jeremy and I both came out with some things we enjoyed. My favorite wasn’t a wine at all but a hard cider from Farnum Hill.  The Summer Cider was great; it was fruity, sweet, but with earthy undertones and the best part bubbly.

Jeremy had several favorites, but as he’s napping, I’m going to talk about the one he sampled that comes with a picture.
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La BelleWinery brought jalapeño wine. The jalapeños are grown here in NH. Jeremy said it had a real kick. 

The last highlight of the day was the cheese. Of course my favorite Cabot was there, and I got a magnet along with several samples. I didn’t feel guilty about taking multiple samples of Cabot because I exclusively buy Cabot at the grocery store for our basic cheese needs. Along with the Cabot, there were two other local cheese that really stood out: The Sandwich Creamery and Robie Farm

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The Sandwich Creamery had the best boursin I’ve had since Paris. Robie Farm’s Toma was just perfect. Sadly, he had already sold it all but the samples when we got there.

Overall the festival was a lot of fun. I hope that next year the vendors are spread out a little more, that I bring more cash, and that tasting tickets are more readily available.

Celebrate, Celebrate

12 June 2010

First most of my day for the next few days will have the soundtrack of the vuvuzela. The  vuvuzela is the South African plastic horn that sounds like a host of bees. There was much talk of it being banned at the World Cup, but local culture won out, BULLY! If you never heard it, just turn on the World Cup anytime from 7AM – 5PM and you will hear it. FIFA says,

Evidently, the vuvuzela is deeply entrenched in football culture in a country fiercely dedicated to staging an unforgettable FIFA World Cup. "It is African culture, we are in Africa and we have to allow them to practice their culture as much as they want to," said FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter.

I get that it is cultural, but every once in  awhile I could use a break. I’m happy for South Africa though, and I hope everything goes smoothly.


Now onto my title. I got a new job. YAY! I am really excited about this. There are lots of pros about this new job:

  • It’s 15 minutes from home instead of 45
  • I’ll have my own classroom
  • Basically there is only one prep instead of four
  • The school is nice and small
  • I’ll get to see a mixture of students

It’s going to be great! I will really miss some of my students and some of my co-workers. However, overall I think this is the right choice.

Last night Jeremy and I went out to celebrate at the Blue Mermaid Island Grill. The Blue Mermaid is on “The Hill” in Portsmouth. We’d never been before, but I really liked it. The food and atmosphere were great. While it was pricier than a place we’d go on a regular basis, it was  perfect for a celebration.  Best service I’ve had in awhile.

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One of my favorite parts of eating out in Italy was that meals lasted forever. A server there never brought out one thing until you were obviously finished and ready. That style of eating lends itself to relaxing conversation not shoveling food in before it gets cold. We got the same type of service last night at the Blue Mermaid. We decided to order several small plates.

We started with Mermaid Fundito. This was by far my favorite of the three plates we shared.

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I could have kept eating this all night and fully intend to try to make it myself. The mix was sharp cheddar, pale ale, fire-roasted tomatoes and chili. There was baguette and pumpernickel for dipping. 

The next plate, Saddle Bags, was my least favorite. These were crispy chicken and cheese filled wontons.

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I thought it was way too salty. I only ate one. Jeremy said the saltiness was what made it good.

The last plate was Tortilla Pizza with Chicken. At this point, I was getting full so I didn’t finish the one piece I took. 

IMG_2679 I loved how chocked full of veggies this pizza was, but there was A LOT of cheese. As you can see.

I had a great drink with grapefruit and basil. It was so savory. It came with a pretty little blue mermaid.

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After eating and walking around for awhile, we ended the night at Popovers on the Square.  I had my favorite plain, vanilla cheesecake in the world. Jeremy had turtle cheesecake. I’m the only one with half a piece left to enjoy today though.

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Lots more fun left for this weekend USA vs England this afternoon, Chili with friends tonight, and tomorrow NH Wine Festival. Are you watching World Cup?