Tuesdays Unwrapped


Emily over at Chatting at the Sky invited fellow bloggers to join her in recognizing and documenting the small, ordinary things in life that truly are abundant in our daily lives but most of us are too busy to recognize and appreciate them.  So we’ve vowed to stop for a second {or okay we should take a few minutes to enjoy the journey of it all} notice something meaningful and precious in our day and blog about it on Tuesdays.

The minute I read the challenge {while at work mind you} I looked down on the floor and saw one of the most precious living things in my life.  It was Scottie {our dog} who came to work with me today as we had an abundance of showings of our home that we’re selling.  I therefore thought it best to just bring him to work with me to avoid taking a day off and/or running back and forth between all the showings.  The piece that is meaningful about this long winded story is that I have an amazingly flexible employer.  Not many employers are understanding and/or even flexible enough to allow a pet in the office.  Thank you Orthopaedic Surgeons, you certainly do make life much easier and in turn I want to work that much more for your office.  Amen!

P.S.  I LOVE it when Scottie lays like this, like he’s superdog or something.  Well HE IS OUR superdog!

Puppy Love & Forgotten Birthday

Last Wednesday was my 37th birthday and I was lucky enough to have Mike take some pictures of me and my fluffy bundle of puppy love.  I adore this picture out of all the ones he took.  It’s a true depiction of how much he loves me and I love him.  He’s the best dog and friend anyone could ask for with his chocolate brown puppy dog eyes.  They and his big curly haired ears melt my heart . . . most of the time anyways :).

I figured I’d mark my birthday this year as it was the first year ever that most of the vital people in my life forgot about me.  And when I say “vital people” I’m talking my husband, my sister, my best friend . . . so ya’ll see what I’m talking about right?  I’m thinking I have a free pass with all of them.  What are the chances they’d all forget the same exact year?  LOL . . . listen I can laugh now but I was feeling pretty cruddy the day of my birthday though.  Oh well . . . I’ve earned free passes.

Exciting Day of Accomplishments!

I feel a sense of accomplishment toward my top 10 things list today.  I worked on photography and our next home, oh and as you can tell from the overlay on Mike’s pic that I also used Photoshop Elements today.  Loving the overlays of which I’m sure I’ll end up overusing and make you guys vomit.

Do you guys see the tear on Mike’s cheek there?  Yes, it was me that made him cry . . . I’m such a meanie huh?  I finished another week of my photography class and learned all about lighting today.  Therefore I took Mike out this morning as my ginny pig for my hands on assignment.  I made him take his sunglasses off as I ultimately needed to see his eyes to grade myself on proper lighting.  Well the sun in his eyes makes him tear so in a roundabout way it was me that made him cry.  I like the indirect natural sunlight in this picture . . . I also like that I caught a picture with him and a tear (not a common thing).

We burned quite a bit of gas looking at houses today.  We put a bid in on Grace Lane yesterday and am waiting for a response so in the meantime we’re continuing to look.  Can’t put all your eggs in one basket right?  Well we found another home that we are extremely anxious to look at (hoping tomorrow).  Here are the top two contenders so far:

11 GRACE LANE, SHELTON (this is the one we have a bid in on)

11 FAWN MEADOW LANE, SHELTON (didn’t find this one till today)

Birdseye view (end of cul de sac people!)

So what’s your vote without knowing prices?  What are the chances that our top two contenders have the same street number?  Wow!

10 Things I Must Do Soon or I’m Quitting Life!

1.    Scrapbook for fun

2.    Finish my photography class

3.    Paint my living room

4.    Get a new hair clip (a pretty one)

5.    Pick out & purchase a camera bag

6.    Finalize the offer on our perspective new home (ugh how agonizing . . . I have hives from the process)

7.    Get a pedicure

8.    Learn more about Photoshop Elements and use it!

9.    Hang my Ikea organizational unit (Help me Mikey pweese)

10.  Make a new Scottie Buddy Boy Dog Collar

Another rainy day today therefore I changed back into my PJ’s after we had lunch out.  Took a nap and now hanging out in my studio further educating myself on white balance.  This is where the pic above comes into play and I think I nailed the white balance on it . . . YES/NO?


March is in like a lion!

Seriously guys there wasn’t a lick of snow to be found on the ground yesterday and mother nature wasn’t happy about that so she plastered the Northeast with 14 inches of snow.  The winds have been whipping and the temps are plunging to single digits tonight.  Ahh yeah I did just use a lot of adjectives . . . must sound like the weather man.  All I have to say is that the saying better hold true which means March will go out like a lamb.  We’ve certainly had our fair share of snow, cold temps and bitter wind chills this winter.  Brrrrr

I enjoyed a cup of black tea and a snack this afternoon.  The cookie is a maple cream cookie direct from Vermont.  So bad but so good!

What the???  You with the blond fur . . . get the . . . move your slimy nose away from . . . Hey you furry thing get away from my maple cookie boy!  A bit of subject blur there as I didn’t expect to be taking a picture of a “moving” subject.  I swear this little devil can smell food from anywhere in this house.

Well I’m off to prepare our dinner for this evening . . . the weather has called for something warm and yummy so it’s wine braised chicken with wild rice and green beans.  Oh can’t wait to eat!  Good night

Grouchy, Working Out, Organization & Well Just Bitchy!

The title is the multiple personalities I’ve had going on for a week or so now . . . muahaha!  I do think the warmer temps we had this past weekend lifted a couple of those personalities from my repertoire . . . Thank God for that!  I couldn’t stand being around myself much less how poor Mike must’ve been feeling.  I’m reminded that it’s that time of year when all these personalities surface AKA “The Winter Blues”.  I don no if that’s really the case but there seems to be validity to the time line.  Annyy Way . . . it was a nice feeling to experience 50 degree weather again  . . .  we’ve been stuck in arctic temps for what seems like months now.

For us it was like spring, we did several hours of work in the garage with the door WIDE open taking in the fresh air, we rinsed off the vehicles (oh God looked like we’d been driving through gigantic mud puddles), we were going to take Scottie for a walk but decided against it as he would’ve been a wet muddy mess.  I really wish someone would open an indoor pet park so us snow ridden people could walk our pets in comfort and little mess.  Here’s a pic of Mike & Scottie from last  weekend when we took Scottie for a walk and YEP he was a mess by the end ugghh!

We’ve been on a steady progression of re-organization around here and it feels good.  It’s invigerating to throw away things that have no life left in them, donate the other junk and find things you’ve been missing and couldn’t find.  Spring cleaning has started early for the Talmadge House as we know that once Spring does FINALLY arrive our boat will be monopolizing all of our time.  Two margarita’s Up to sunnier warmer days ahead!

A Lunch Date During Work Hours . . . Oh We Are Bad!

Yeah Yeah I know Latonya, I was suppose to post about this Thursday night but you know how things just get in the way sometimes right?

So my sister girlfriend Latonya and I slipped out of the office on Thursday to grab lunch at one of our favorite places in New Haven well actually it’s in Westville ~ AKA part of New Haven, CT.  Such a quaint place really . . . called Deja Brew.  In the spring, summer and fall the owner has bowls of water set out for all the neighborhood dogs.  She also gives treats to the dogs.  Hmmm . . . I’m thinking I should turn her onto Scottie Buddy Boys treats don’t cha think?  Please forgive me with this picture, it’s really unbecoming of the place AKA a bad picture 😦  But hey, I’m still learning right?

Look at how beautifully they’ve decorated the fire place . . . oh this is the perfect place for two girlfriends to gossip while having lunch.  I was disappointed that I couldn’t get a larger view of the fireplace . . . I was restricted by my fixed lens (50 mm) and I couldn’t back up any further Uggghhh . . . “Ahhhh da gon it, I need a dang camera bag so I can carry all my lenses.”  You get the idea anyways right? 🙂

And how pretty is this picture of my girlfriend?  Latonya ya gorgeous diva girl . . . this was my favorite picture of you from all the shots I took.  Beautiful smile, love your hair and your glasses!  Side note to Latonya:  All of the other shots I took looked like you had a tree growing out of your a** LMAO!!!

And lastly a picture of my current favorite drink from Deja Brew . . . Frozen Green Tea Frappe.  Oh this is sooo yummy!

If you live nearby I’d definitely recommend this place for a nice lunch date with a girlfriend.  Word from the wise though . . . if interested in ordering their soup ask if it’s homemade or not.  They have a habit of serving some of their soups from the can ~ Go figure ~ listen you can’t serve canned soup in a cafe like this ~ what is the owner thinking ugghh.  They do make some homemade soups, you just need to ask which is homemade.

GO STEELERS!!!  SO MICHAEL’S A LONG TIME STEELER FAN BUT DOESN’T HAVE TERRIBLE TOWLS, WHAT’S UP WITH THAT.  HE’S A BAD FAN!  BAD BAD BOY!!!  I’M ORDERING UP SOME SO WE CAN HAVE THEM FOR NEXT YEAR.

Sickies and Soup

Today started off with a trip to the vet’s office for Pele (our black kitty) who hasn’t been feeling well.  Doc says he has an infection (down south ~ you know where the food makes it’s final departure) so off we went with an oral liquid med to be given 3 x/day.  Now listen I’ve been a space cadet the last couple of days cuz I haven’t been feeling well either which brings me to realizing I should’ve asked Doc if they offer Pele’s meds in pill form but Miss Space Cadet wasn’t thinking.  This cat is aweful with liquids . . . for some reason he foams at the mouth and this time was no different.  So get this, the med smells like bananas which means it must taste like bananas. . . cats don’t eat bananas so why would vet people think this flavor would be enticing for a cat?  If looks could kill Mike and I’d be dead.  This is bound to make for a great experience 3 x/day for the next FIVE days UGGGHHH!

Kitty Kat’s doctors office in Stratford . . . Dr Busek.

So Mike and I are both sick with some sort of sinus/head/throat cold.  I figured with the temperature almost sub zero and our house full of sickies it’d be the perfect time to make a big pot of soup.  Oh and yes it certainly is one of my favorites and I’m hoping you guys will love it as well.  If you love sausage, kale and cannellini beans you will love this soup.  So easy to make

WHITE BEAN, SAUSAGE AND KALE STEW

RECIPE CREDIT GOES TO RACHEL RAY ~ ALTHOUGH I’VE MADE CHANGES TO MY LIKING

1 TB extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling

1 pound precooked pork sausage, such as kielbasa, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/4″ pieces.  I substitute with one roll of regular flavored Jimmy Dean Sausage.

Three 15-ounce cans cannellini beans, dranied and rinsed.  I only use 2 cans otherwise two much bean

2 garlic cloves, chopped.  I use 4-5 cloves cuz I like garlic.

2 cups chicken broth.  I use 3 cups cuz I like broth in my soup & 2 cups doesn’t give you broth to write home about.

1 bay leaf (dried)

1 small bunch kale, leaves stripped from stems and coarsely chopped (about 4 packed cups)

Salt and ground pepper

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Heat the olive oil in a large dutch oven or pot over medium-high heat.  Add the sausage and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 6 minutes.  Add the beans and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes.  Add the chicken broth, bay leaf and kale and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, covered, for 10 minutes.  Discard the bay leaf.  Season the stew to taste with salt and pepper and serve with a drizzle of olive oil and the cheese.

Bon Appetit 🙂

Calling All Laundering Diva’s

Wanted to share one of the BEST pet detergents I’ve found on the market.  Sold by The Laundress, a trendy NY City Company.  It has a soft baby scent and amazingly removes all pet hair.  I’m astounded by the results and am an indebted customer.

Don’t ya just love keeping your pets bedding and clothing clean, soft and smelling like a baby?  I know I do but then again I’m a Laundering Diva and our dog is umm yeah . . . spoiled to the core!

I recently ventured into trying their whites detergent.   Juries still out on this particular product but I have no reservation that it will stand strong to the test.  They’re having a sale that ends today YES TODAY (1/15/09) so hurry to get 15% off.  Must enter “newyear09” at time of checkout.

I’m Baaaack!

To the gym that is!

Well, today I got my tush to the gym to restart my workout for sunnier days that lay ahead of us all.  So here I’m thinking the last time I went to the gym was ya know like the end of November.  So I ask the guy behind the counter “hey when was the last time I swiped in to work out?”  “Oct 27th” WHAT?  Oh man I’m 4 weeks further behind than originally thought.

Decided to weigh myself before the workout and OOOOO GOOD GRIEF (major eye rolling as I stepped off the scale). . . yeah well lets just say I’ll never say how much but I’ll say that I’m on a strict mission to lose 12 – 15 lbs to be where I was the beginning of this past summer.  How the heck did that happen? ~ guess the extra glasses of Bailey’s on the rocks, the Lindor Truffles and the fall/winter foods haven’t helped.  Why can’t we have the all the yummy things and not be affected?  ALRIGHTY THEN I’ll stop complaining and get onto showing ya’ll where I work out.

Planet Fitness in Shelton is located within the “Rinks of Shelton Sports Center” which has it’s perks of which I’ll show you in a second.

This is the view I have during my cardio work-out.  Isn’t that so cool . . . I always have my ear buds in listening to my music so I don’t watch the TV on the machine . . . so to watch all the ice skaters or a ice hockey game is just the inspiration needed.

And just an inside view of the gym.  It’s a very clean & friendly gym.  I just re-signed for another year for $105.00 . . . yes that’s for the entire year!  Unbelievable price really though.  I won’t even post how much I was paying prior to last year at my prior (meat-market) gym.