Monday, June 27, 2011

Weekend Wanderings: Unplanned

So, I went into this weekend with only one expectation: to work on a presentation for work.  Needless to say, that didn't get done.  So it goes.  The weekend was far from a bust, though, and on Friday, I somehow miraculously made it home in time to apply for an Enhanced Driver's License.  So, now, not only will I be able to get into bars again, I'll also be able to get into Canada and Mexico without a passport.  Provided I arrive there by land or sea.  SCORE!

Given my fabulous new eligibility to drive again, I spent Saturday morning waiting for my car to be inspected (and then to get new tires and a new alignment).  This was also less painful than it sounds, since I spent a good portion of the waiting time eating a grilled blueberry muffin at the diner next door, and the rest of the time reading Born to Run, which I'm enjoying immensely.  Once I made it home, Roger, Dave and I wandered over to a neighbor's tag sale, where I purchased a set of 12 Spode Christmas Tree mugs and tea plates, with an ashtray, creamer, sugar bowl, and candlesticks for $30, because I thought it matched my parents' Nikko set.  It didn't, and after thinking back on theirs and comparing them, I actually think their set is much more elegant. Still, I decided to put aside childish dreams of a Tiffany set (which I, um, actually think is sort of ugly) and keep the Spode ones for myself and the Anglophile that resides in my heart. When I looked up the set, it turns out that if they were all bought individually, they would have cost almost $600.  I'm pretty happy with the deal.  Basically, I am a big dork and spend an inordinate amount of time thinking about place settings.  But, if it makes you feel better, please know that I considered putting up pictures of all three of these settings and decided to spare you.  You're welcome.  Yes.

After this, I went for a five-mile run, and felt amazing.  I'm paying for it now in sore legs, but while I was doing it, everything felt great.  It gives me a little more hope for the race I'm running on July 4th.  I'd only planned to be out for a little while, so by the time I got back, we only had 20 minutes before we had to leave to meet up for lunch with Rachel.  Being able to take a shower and get ready in that time was almost as much of a feat as the run was, but we made it, and ate way, way too much Chili's.  I spent the rest of the afternoon doing what felt like endless loads of laundry and reading (the book is seriously good), before making some zucchini for dinner.  Dinner was followed by Roger making a giant butter cookie (see below for the recipe), and all of us eating it with blueberry port.  Yes, I had a good work out, but I also consumed my weight in food.  Sigh.

Sunday was decidedly less adventurous, consisting mainly of a one-mile run, folding those never-ending loads of laundry, and eating and reading even more, along with the tiniest bit of work and some planning for our annual Independence Day barbecue.  My contributions?  Macaroni & cheese, earl grey iced tea, and basil lemonade.  Roger's contribution?  Vodka gummy bears.  Perfect.

One Giant Butter Cookie

1 stick butter
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 egg
2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
a pinch of salt
a pinch of cinnamon
1/4 milk
1/2 cup crushed walnuts

Preheat over to 375° F.  Cream together butter and sugar.  Beat in vanilla and egg until well-blended, adding in dry ingredients and then milk to create a sticky consistency before mixing in the crushed walnuts.  Now comes the messy part.  Scoop everything onto a cookie sheet and shape into something resembling a giant cookie.  Try to make it the same thickness all around.  Bake until browned on the edges and cooked through in the middle, about 15 minutes.  When just barely cooled, break off little pieces and enjoy with strawberry jam and blueberry port.

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