Monthly Archives: March 2010

Spoiler alert: I don’t have three pet lobsters

Instead, we enjoyed a delicious meal with fresh lobster with a parsley butter sauce, smashed red potatoes with chive and onion cream cheese and steamed asparagus.

Besides, by now I know you’ve seen the video and all the shrieking and jumping that ensued.

And oh, the antenna….sticking out of the pot to remind us of what we had done.

And the carnage that remained.

We had killed three living beings.

And they were delicious.

And then Gertie had to comfort us and make us feel better for our animal cruelty.

It was that kind of night.

Because friends don’t let friends kill lobsters alone.

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REDRUM!

A few things to pay attention to:

I am a spaz.

Roomie & DD Girl are adorable.

I am a spaz. I pace when I’m nervous.

Lobsters make me scream.

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Killer style

Time to brag: I have my own personal stylist.

I know what you are thinking…I disapear for two weeks, reapear with some random butt injury and now a stylist? Who do I think I am?

Queenie, of course. At least that’s what my stylist likes to call me. I like to call her “my friend Jenny.”

See, Jenny runs this awesome Charm Chicks blog and she’s really good at finding adorable outfits and posting about all the hip style trends. 

So I asked her to do a little personal shopping for me. And now my biggest fashion problem is picking between all the cute selections she posted.

But here’s the good news. I can share her with you.

Simply leave a comment here of what you would like My Friend Jenny to find for you, and I’ll let you know when it’s found!

If killer style isn’t your thing but killing style is, stick around for the lobster murders tonight…

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Tap. Tap. Is this thing on?

Well this is embarrassing.

No posts in two weeks?! What is wrong with me?

Gah. 

Ok, fine. I’m alive. With absolutely no excuses for abandoning my blog.

[Empty promises to follow.]

And I promise never, ever to leave you in the quirky darkness again. And to alway, always blog, even when I’m super busy.

So what the heck have I been up to?

Well, first off. I broke my butt.

Yup, not even kidding. Despite what you might think, this injury did not occur during a Fire & Wine night.

I slipped on the ice on Monday heading down my front steps. One minute I was upright, the next minute – BLAMO!- I was down. Hard. On my tailbone.

But don’t worry. He’s been taking good care of me.

Which has included the purchase and subsequent wearing of donut on his head.

Eh, it didn’t do anything for me anyway. I prefer sitting on ice these days.

Also, the family has been great. My mom has been full of empathy, and my new in-laws sent over my brother-in-law with a bag of hot tamales (my favorite candy.)

Unfortunately, I was sitting on the couch, not wearing any pants when he randomly arrived at our house. (There was a blanket nearby, for anyone who is worried about how this scene played out.)

Look very closely at the fellows. Image copyright 2010 BlueRue Studio Photography.

He really likes to drop trou.

Speaking of wedding pictures, that’s another thing I’ve been up to.

I mean, if you had wedding pictures this awesome, wouldn’t you spend your time looking at them over and over again?

I can say that not because I am awesome, but because my photographer made me look awesome. There is a difference.

My pictures were up just in time to show them off on my latest business trip to Hershey, PA. Armed with my (new!) i-phone and a chocolate martini, I am an unstoppable happy hour social machine.

And when it comes to happy hours, there is probably nothing I like better than showing off my city to friends from out of town.

Lucky for me, my friend Melissa at SingleGalNYC  made Kansas City a stop on her Great Dating Blitz. She even allowed me to crash a single gals happy hour at one of my favorite KC hot spots.

So, here I am a business trip, social events and butt injury later, asking you to stick with me here in Quirkyville.  Because I am such a pain in the butt.

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My empty bag of tricks

Just call me Mary Poppins.

That’s what I said as I left work yesterday to go spend a few hours watching the most adorable nephew ever.

Mary Poppins is awesome. She sings. She dances. She has a bag of tricks.

Queen of Quirky can sing and dance. And she has a giant purse. It seemed like a plausible comparison.

And oh we were having a Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious time. Hanging out in our boopoo or Bumbo or whatever it’s called.(which according to my brother rings in at a whopping $60…wow, that’s like a nice dinner out and TWO beers. )

And then in our chair with all the doodads to spin and bonk.

It’s fun to be five months.

It’s fun to be an aunt.

And don’t you know I was the funniest aunt ever?!

And then, something really bad happened.

The bottom lip.

Oh no. Not the lip, I said. Please, please, please…I don’t want to see the lip, Eli. Aunt Stephanie is fun!

Look, I can dance. Do do do do do.

I can make funny noises! Blllllllllllllllllllllllrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

Ok, ok, ok. Please stop crying. Tell you what, I’ll make you a yummy cake on your first birthday. No go? You can even smash your hand in it. Don’t you know how much fun it is to smash your first cake?  I know you haven’t tasted cake yet, and I’m not even sure I know how to bake a cake. But we can try. Come on, Eli. Let’s try together!

You know what else? We can go to the ZOO! Yup, we’re going to the zoo, zoo, zoo. How about you, you, you. Ok, ok, no zoo, no zoo.

Mary Poppins needed some new tricks.

Ok, how about I take you driving when you turn sixteen.  I won’t even flinch when you almost forget to stop at the stop sign. Alright. I see. You can’t see the value in that promise yet. 

Time to throw in the big one. It’s like the spoon full of sugar on steroids.

I will buy you your first beer when you turn 21. No?

Notice I did not promise him any cousins to play with in a few years…at that point, it seemed a bit extreme.

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Fire & Wine – I did not boil my face off

I have a new toy.

Isn’t she pretty?

(Thank you, dear blogging friend.)

It seemed more than appropriate to bring back Fire & Wine (post wedding break) and christen the new toy.

And simultaneously try not to boil my face.

Because we all know, I’m not to be trusted with even the simplest of kitchen tasks. Inserting a whirling stick into a pot of hot liquid could (have) spelled disaster for me.

Luckily for all of us involved, I did not boil my face.

Instead, I made a most delicious (and not so nutritious) artichoke bisque.

The key to this (aside from avoiding molten splashback) was to distract my guests with tasty appetizers so that they didn’t notice the entire stick of butter going into the soup.

Hey, look over there! Rosemary flatbread, goat cheese and tapenade!

Butter? What butter?

See how that works? It’s easy.

So was the soup:

(Adapted from this Group Recipe for Fresh Artichoke Bisque.)

  • 2 cans of large artichoke hearts (drained and rinsed.)
  • 8 Tbsp butter
  • 1 medium size leek, white-and-light green part, sliced and rinsed
  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped shallots
  • 2 medium size Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 8 cups of homemade vegetable stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 4 sprigs of parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon cracked white peppercorns
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup of cream
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • Directions:

    Dice leek and soak in water to remove dirt. Remove pieces with slotted spoon and dry thoroughly. Give artichokes a rough chop and make sure they are dried.

    In a large pot, melt half of the butter and cook the artichoke hearts, leek, garlic, and shallots on medium heat until tender but not brown. Add the potatoes and stock. Tie up the bay leaf, thyme, parsley, and peppercorns in cheesecloth and add to the pot. Increase heat to bring to a simmer, then lower heat and continue to simmer uncovered, 1 hour.

    Remove and discard the herbs.  Whip out the new immersion blender and carefully blend soup.

    Whisk in the remaining butter and the cream. Using a microplane, grate nutmeg over soup and serve.

    Some notes: I might suggest adding another potato to thicken the soup a bit. I served with chibatta bread.

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    The more the merrier

    “Hey, I was at your wedding on Saturday.”

    It was Tuesday and I was sitting in a sports bar  (with my husband…woot!) and friends to watch the KU/K-State game.  This factoid was shared by the guy who delivered my grilled chicken sandwich (with swiss cheese and mushrooms…yum.)

    My first thought was he must have been someone’s date that I didn’t get around to meeting…

    But then Mr. Quirky remembered.

    Every wedding has them. Those strangers who wander into your wedding, whether it be playful, voyeuristic or just to drink your booze.

    The wedding crashers.

    And ours just happened to be holding a delicious grilled chicken sandwich.

    “Oh my gosh,” I said after stuffing my face with a fry. “I remember now. Oh, and can I get some ranch dressing too?” (Because any good wedding crasher should provide ranch dressing.)

    I did remember. The cute couple who Mr. Quirky found in the lobby at our wedding reception (the venue is attached to a bar that is open to the public.) They had wandered in to peek at the wedding, (Because who wouldn’t want to be at that party? ) and Mr. Quirky invited them to stay and have a beer.

    And now, a few days later, the guy is forgetting to bring me my ranch dressing.

    Turns out our wedding crasher is a cool dude (ranch dressing forgetfulness aside) who happens to work at a bar that I have been a regular at for years. The bar that introduced the Lunch Bunch.

    So, we did what we do. We made a new friend, swapped numbers and hope to hang out soon.

    Crash is such a harsh word. I like to think of them as wedding  fans, wedding joiners, wedding strangers who become friends…

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    Over the moon

    Image copyright 2010 Blue Rue Studio Photography

    Well, we did it. We’re now Mr. & Mrs. Quirky.

    It was amazing, perfect and quirky from start to finish. And, no. There was no blogging at the wedding. (Maybe a little tweeting…) This picture was conceptualized by our fantastic photographer …more on the photos in a bit…

    The day began with me in my in-law’s guest room, with one bed hog of a Gertie dog at my feet, a visiting pug at my head and a cell phone that had been set outside my room playing at top volume “What a Wonderful World.”

    The bridesmaids started trickling in for the beauty fest. There was a little bit of grumbling for the early hour.

    But hey, I got up and ran before they even got there. I don’t know what they were talking about.

    I’m not going to lie.

    I had some jitters.

    But meanwhile my fantastic makeup artist and hair stylist sprinkled their magic pixi dust on me and turned me into … a bride.

    We loaded up the girls into a 10 person big red Mercedes passenger van — Clifford. And off we were to meet my groom.

    And at that moment, all the nerves and butterflies left.

    He looked spectacular. We looked spectacular.

    It was our day.

    Time for photos.

    Turns out there was a pub crawl going on in the area we planned our first shoot.

    We were joined by a motley crew of fellows dressed as fairies in a few of those shots. Meanwhile, everyone kept asking us if we were really a wedding party. We found this very hilarious, as if we would just dress like that on an ordinary Saturday afternoon.

    After all the photos were taken, my non-nervous stomach was growling at me. Our photographer and his wife drove Mr. Quirky and myself through a Wendy’s where I inhaled the most delicious chicken nuggets I had ever eaten.

    There was some down time after family pics at the church, and then it was W time. The ceremony was beautiful. My brother and his wife played instrumental music on the guitar (him) and violin (her.)  I can’t even really describe taking our vows.  I just kept looking into his eyes and was so happy to be pledging forever to him.

    We exited to “Rainbow Connection.” Apparently there was a ripple effect in the church as people slowly began to recognize the tune.

    At the reception, we kicked off the celebration with our wedding party by taking a shot (cranberry juice for our pregnant bridesmaid and underage bridesmaid) before being introduced to some music from Star Wars.

    And so began the party.

    The hot dogs, nachos and pretzels were a hit (and so tasty) as were the sandwiches my mother-in-law made.

    But the real star of the show was the cake.

    Words don’t do it justice.

    Neither do pictures, really. But they help.

    I just loved seeing people crowded around it, looking at all the pictures on the film reel.

    So much work went into it. And so much love.

    The toasts were also very memorable.

    DD Girl (Who looked amazing herself, along with all the girls) had everyone in giggles when she shared how Mr. Quirky used to take books to the bar to pick up girls.

    And Mr. Quirky’s friend Jimmy wandered up to the microphone holding a

    candle from the table centerpieces.

    We were all wondering what the candle was for, and how it would play into his toast.

    Turns out, it was just a dare from another groomsman that he should randomly bring the candle up and not refer to it at all.

    We got a big kick out of it.

    Then my new family showed me how much fun they can be.

    (As if I didn’t know.)

    My brothers in-law were something else.

    It was one heck of a party.

    But no one could have prepared me for what happened toward the end of the night.

    Mr. Quirky’s siblings and cousins were up to something.

    Something about revenge on their parents for a Christmas card a few years back.

    They marched up to the DJ booth with a plan.

    And came out with a big announcement from the DJ.

    Suddenly, they were dancing their way on stage.

    Something very big was about to happen.

    In the most choreographed and to-the-beat motion, the 10 plus family members showed us the moon.

    And that folks is how Queen of Quirky was welcomed into the family….

    I told them that if I was going to be participating in massive family moonings, I would need a little more warning, a lot less dress and some major time on the eliptical machine at the gym.

    They forgave me for not participating. (This time.)

    I’m sure I’ll be posting a link to many more pictures for those who want to see later, but here are a few of the ones that were on Facebook today.

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