Saturday, October 1, 2011

Dunnshine's Favorite Things, #3

Ta da!

I have emerged from the last two months which I am dubbing Oh, Now I Remember What It's Like To Have a Job With Real Responsibilities.


I do love that the universe continues to remind me that I must actively seek and maintain balance.  It is not something that will always be there once it is achieved.  It must be loved, nurtured and cultivated . . . saucey minx though it is.

With that in mind, I make my triumphant blogging return with a few more of my favorite things.

1. Intention. 
I don't know about you, but there are days that I wake up . . . do stuff . . . go to bed and think Wow, I didn't actually DO anything today.  I believe those days are necessary and mentally beneficial, but since starting my job, I realize I may have gotten a little too comfortable in my free time.  An actual task that probably would've taken all of 17 minutes to complete would be put off, and put off, and put off--I've got time, and those reruns of Nigella Feasts! ain't gonna watch themselves--to the point where it became this insurmountable, dramatic thing.  You want me to change the BRITA filter?  That will take foreeeeeever.  Yeah, I'm 31-years old and still a second-grader at my core--I need structure, I require challenges, and I must apply myself.  Otherwise, I get feisty for no reason and start shit by the monkey bars.

Knowing this about myself, I can honestly say that I love having a job because it requires me to be intentional with my time for 40 hours a week.  This, in turn, requires me to be intentional with my free time so I can avoid having the things I love (blogging, maybe?) go the way of the BRITA filter.

So, I feel like I'm getting more of handle on the job and a handle on my free time.  I appreciate both of them even more. 

Mrs. Asti would be so proud.

2. Red Heels 
As part of Intention Quest 2011, I am enjoying my business-casual dress code and putting forth a bit more effort in the fashion department.  Left to my own devices I am an average fashionista, but I am always looking for some inspiration or finesse.  Tina Fey pretty much nailed my fashion dilemma in a Vanity Fair article a few years ago.  "Because of the Greek-girl thing, I have, like, boobs and butt.  I only have two speeds – matronly or a little too slutty. I have to be steered away from cheetah print."  I am about 5'9" and have my share of lovely lady lumps.  Much like Ms. Tina, I have two speeds--Dorothy Zbornak and Amazon/dominatrix.  I embrace my height and build, but certain items have no business in my closet:  spaghetti straps, neon, cap sleeves, fringe of any kind, "bralettes", 5" heels, mini skirts, pleated pants, and those dresses that highlight the sternum/ribcage (when did counting a woman's ribs become attractive?).  I keep my clothes pretty neutral and structured and add color with scarfs, blazers, a print here and there, and now, these lovelies . . .

Aren't they fabulous?!

I found them at ROSS, tossed under a rack in the clearance section.  I knew they would put me a little closer to the Amazon/dominatrix camp, but when I slipped them on--oooooooo, girl!--I knew I had to make them mine. 

Oh, the power of the red heel.  They comfortably handle my daily trek around campus without making my toes feel like they're stuck in a vice.  They are instant mood and confidence enhancers.  And, I don't feel as if people are staring at me like I'm dragging a stripper pole.

Ladies, get thee to a pair of fabulous colorful heels.

3.  Alice B.'s Oral Fixation
Two and a half years ago, D.R. and I made the decision to rescue a dog and off we went to a Los Angeles Animal Shelter.  I, of course, wanted all the dogs and broke down crying no less than three times.

Then, we found this face.

The day we became her humans.
Would you have been able to walk away from those wonky ears and the soulful brown eyes?  Neither could we.

When she gets anxious or excited, she soothes herself by carrying things in her mouth.  Recently, this fixation has gotten a little--uhhh, skewed.

Started off harmless with the fuzzy blue cow.

Moved onto the fuzzy orange bone.

Clearly my peanut butter obsession has been a bad influence.

A train ticket?  Really Alice?

We should probably intervene at some point, but it's so fun to see what she brings us.

4.  Anthony Bourdain
Used to be a whole pig.  Try not to think of Charlotte's Web. (source)   

My liking of Anthony Bourdain was a slow burn.  I knew him mostly for his judging on Top Chef--fine and astute commentary, but did he need to be so snarky?  Then, I found myself with nothing to do on a Saturday (see item #1) and a No Reservations marathon on the Travel Channel.  I was sucked in by his morphing hair styles, his gangly swagger that is half Please accept me, I only want your love, and half I will punch you in the neck if you say anything about my leather jacket in 80 degree weather.  The man has a somewhat dark past, but his love for food comes from a good and pure place.  For all his foul language, quick and biting wit, and less-than-high-regard for Food Network personalities, there is a true respect for food and its place in a culture.  Bourdain wants you to get riled up when he shoots his mouth off about Paula Deen because then maybe you'll also get riled up about the food your eating.  What are you eating?  Why are you eating it?  Where did it come from?  I cringed during the "Cajun Country" episode when he shot a pig in the head (he is from Jersey after all), but I have also never seen such loving documentation of the breaking down and flavoring up of meat.  I mean, they film the whooooooole process.  Bourdain is making a point--you gotta respect the animal that gave its life for your pork chop.  Bourdain loved that pig.  Every last bite of it.

5.  The Breakfast Cookie
With the start of the new job, leisurely morning coffee and nursing a bowl of oatmeal is a thing of the past.  Now, my mornings have to flow as smoothly and efficiently as possible.  This little beauty really helps.  Wish I could take credit for it, but I can't.  I can, however, take credit for my tweaking.

Dunnshine's Breakfast Cookie
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 scoop of vanilla protein powder (about a tablespoon, maybe a little more)
2 Tbsp. of peanut butter (I'm sure any nut butter would be fine here, but I just can't part with my Skippy Natural)
2-4 Tbsp of milk of your choice (I've been using vanilla almond milk)
1 Tbsp of flaked coconut
1-2 Tbsp of raisins
Sweetner (I've used agave syrup, Splenda and honey.  Depends on your taste)

Mix the oats, protein powder and peanut butter.  Add enough milk until it comes together and is no longer crumbly.  Mix in the coconut, raisins, cinnamon and sweetner.  Spread onto a small plate and flatten into a "cookie".  Leave in the refrigerator overnight.  In the morning, the oats will have softned and it will taste somewhere between a bowl of oatmeal and an oatmeal cookie.  Get your coffee in a travel mug and off to work you go!

I promise I'll be back sooner than two months down the road.  I've figured out my priorities in life and I'm renewing my commitment.  Let's spend our lives together.

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