Thursday, July 29, 2010

... and more food

It seems this blog is being overtaken by food. Maybe that's because making dinner is the big excitement in my day... haha. Cooking is my new hobby.

So we had salmon again tonight, since we both liked it so much last week. I cooked the salmon filets the same way, but we had it with quinoa and sliced avocados and some zinfandel. The quinoa was my favorite part... you cook it like rice, and I added some squeezed lemon and a bit of orange juice along with some thyme and cayenne pepper. I also squeezed some lemon and sprinkled some cayenne pepper over the avocados. Lemon + fish = yummyness :)

(And yes, we always eat at the bar between the kitchen and dining area... we haven't bothered getting a dining table yet, and we might just keep it that way to save space).

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Menu Monday... on Wednesday.

I promise I did actually make this dinner on Monday... just haven't gotten around to posting it :)

We had stir-fry this week. I have made it before, but I've never been really impressed by any recipes that I had tried... so I tried it again, and made up my own recipe. Following recipes has never been my forte... I've found that experimental cooking generally turns out better than when I try to follow one set recipe. (It does occasionally end rather disastrously, however.) This time, apart from letting the vegetables cook a bit too long and get a teensy bit mushy, the stir-fry was pretty good.

The stir-fry had onions, broccoli, carrots, snow peas, and mung bean sprouts in it. I used soy sauce, sesame oil, chopped ginger and garlic to season it.
I sauteed the mushrooms separately (because Thomas isn't especially fond of them) in butter and garlic, and squeezed the juice of half a lemon over them with some fresh ground black pepper. I thought they were very yummy, and Thomas even ate a few.
We ate it with brown rice, which has the yummiest nutty flavor... it went really well with stir-fry.

Thomas took this picture of the food. He said it was artsy. I think that's a mushroom in the foreground.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Sunday dinner



Iced lattes with ice cream in them, and Boston creme cake with a strawberry topping. Decadent and delicious, and probably detrimental to our health. But we're only young once, right?

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Look what I found!



Kenyan tea! The actual stuff you get in Kenya, same package and everything. We found it in the bazaar attached to the Indian restaurant that we went to tonight with Stephen Whitson (RVA friend). It had all kinds of international stuff... I even found things like Marmite and Vegemite and PG Tips... yum :). We'll definitely be back there for our international food fix. Dallas is awesome... it's relatively easy to get international stuff. For a price. But it's totally worth it for a taste of home.

Friday, July 23, 2010

A quick view...



..from our balcony/porch/verandah/whatever you want to call it.  [Side note: because of my multicultural upbringing, I never know what word to use for things... should I call it pudding or dessert? The bathroom, or restroom, or toilet, or loo, or choo? Silverware or cutlery? Closet or wardrobe?... anyways you get my drift].

Right. Back to the post at hand. Which is mainly to test how blogging works on my new Evo 4G, but also to show you the view from our balcony. Because I know you're dying to see it, right? Haha.

As you can see it's not particularly glamorous, but considering it's too hot to spend any length of time out there it doesn't bother us :) Can you spot the skyscrapers in the background? I like this apartment complex because it feels like the suburbs, but it's actually right in the middle of Dallas.

Have I mentioned that I'm doing this whole post on my Evo? :) Yup, even took the picture with it. *Sigh* I'm in love. With an inanimate object.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Leisurely life

While my stay-at-home-wife life is admittedly kind of lame, at least I get to do this whenever I want:


Laying out by the pool (one of the three in our apartment complex) in the sunshine with a good book... ahhhhh....

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

I have joined the ranks...

... of smartphone owners! And I'm thoroughly excited about it. I still have no clue how to use it... but when I figure it out, I could be writing blog posts ON it.

Here it is! My HTC Evo 4G... isn't it pretty? :)

Thomas surprised me with it yesterday. I knew I was getting one, but I wasn't sure when. I kept trying to get him to go the Sprint store with me so we could order it... and he kept making up excuses... because he had already ordered it and was waiting for it to arrive so he could surprise me :) I squealed. Of course. And then played with it all night. After I had pried it out of Thomas's hands :)

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Menu Monday

My idea for "Menu Monday" is to post what we eat each Monday to make myself branch out and try new stuff, because I love cooking and I don't want to get stuck in a rut with it!
So... I branched out last night and cooked fish. I normally don't like to because it stinks up the whole house for a couple days with a not-so-delightful fishy smell. So I chose salmon, because it doesn't really smell fishy... and I baked it, which also reduces the smell factor.
It turned out really well... I learned how to cook the salmon from the fabulous Grandma Driver when I was staying with her in May :) I squeezed some lemon juice over the filets, sprinkled some salt and fresh ground pepper on them, and then spread mayonnaise over the top before baking them.
We ate them with oven-baked fries, over which I sprinkled rosemary and thyme, along with side salads and some Pinot Gris. Best meal I've had in the past couple of weeks. Or maybe it just really hit the spot. Whatever the case... it was very yummy.



Brief weekend recap (in case anyone cares to know):
We watched "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" on Friday, which we thought was hilarious and entertaining. But that could just be because we are actually 12-year-olds stuck in 21-year-olds bodies. The next day we bought the "Hunger Games" books by Suzanne Collins and spent the rest of the weekend fighting over them ("It's my turn to read!"... "No, it's my turn!"). Yet more proof that we are still 12. Seriously, though... those books are amazing! Go find them and read them. I can't wait for the last one to come out next month! On Sunday night we had grand plans of going to Whiterock Lake for a picnic but it was so so so HOT that we just carried everything down to the pool and ate as fast as we could before getting in the pool. I don't think I've ever been in a place that gets this hot. 

Right... onto more important (and dreaded) things, ie. the infamous online classes...

Friday, July 16, 2010

extemporaneous

Isn't that a cool word? It means unrehearsed, improvised, spontaneous. Which is what our life has been like recently, and I'm thoroughly enjoying it. And it also describes this blog post.

It's Friday! Which means it's basically the weekend, and then I get to see Thomas for more than the four hours between we he gets home from work and bedtime. yay :)
This stay-at-home wife stuff might seem dreamy and wonderful, but really it gets kinda boring and lonely during the day. Of course, getting a puppy would fix all of this (right, Thomas? :) )...

I spend several hours out of each day doing online classes (trying not to pull my hair out in utter boredom), but it helps to go and sit outside and read about fascinating things such as federalism by the pool. Sunshine makes all things better. And I can just jump in the pool when it gets too hot.

We  got our weekend started a little early last night...  with an impromptu date night at Fuddruckers (whose claim about having the best burgers in the world is quite true)... Thomas wouldn't let me take a picture of him, hence the funny angle:

And then we wandered around Borders for an hour or so looking at books... which I think is the greatest free entertainment ever. I love books.
I managed to get a picture with Thomas in it without him realizing.

Speaking of Thomas, I'm thinking I might need to start a whole other blog about his sleep-talking, because the things he says are just too funny.

Thursday, 2:45am: I wake up suddenly, and realize it's because Thomas is talking.
Thomas: (half-chanting like he is in a crowd of people protesting something) Don't take away our free holidays! Keep free holidays! Keep free holidays! Keep free holidays!

Make any sense to you?

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

hilarious husband

So last night Thomas was fast asleep and I was reading my book next to him, and he started talking to me. Now, he talks in his sleep a lot, but it's usually just a one-liner. This time, however, it was interactive. I wrote it down right after it happened so I wouldn't forget it. And it was just so funny that I can't keep it to myself :)

Thomas: (rolls over and addresses me, while fast asleep) I have a theory for you
Sarah: (snickers) Oh, yeah?
Thomas: Are you ready for this?
Sarah: I'm ready
Thomas: It's earth-shattering
Sarah: Let's hear it (at this point the bed is shaking because I'm laughing so hard and trying to suppress it)
Thomas: How is it that a computer has this many CPUs (mumbles on about computers and CPUs)...?
Sarah: I don't know, what's your theory?
Thomas: Well, it's all about the processing speed (mumbles more about processing and CPUs)...
Sarah: *dies laughing*

And then he rolled over and went back to la-la land. Seriously, who talks about computers and CPUs and processing speeds in their sleep? Is that what he dreams about at night? Hahaha. Engineers. Sheesh.

Monday, July 12, 2010

really random

So we did lots of exploring Dallas this past weekend... our apartment mega-plex is HUGE and we finally walked around the country club and the lakes. We also went to White Rock Lake, and decided we need to get some bikes because there are so many perfect bike trails around it... it's too big to walk around. But my favorite place this weekend was a fabulous discovery - the "World Market." It sells stuff from all over the world (which is fairly obvious to deduce from the name). I found all of my favorite British food, as well as some African stuff... Kenyan coffee and tea, various spices.

We ended up buying some South African wine, and some Austrian crystal wine glasses:


See? It's from South Africa... makes me happy :)

We had it with dinner: individualized salads

Left: Thomas... he likes his salad covered in grilled chicken and ranch dressing. Minimal veggies (though I did coerce him into having 3 baby tomatoes... you can see one in the top left peeking out from all the chicken). There's my meat-loving boy.
Right: Sarah... I like my salads with chickpeas and tofu and lots of veggies... leftover preferences from my two years in vegan-land, otherwise known as Connecticut College.

More randomness:

1. I feel like I'm starting to get to know Dallas better. I'm even venturing out  by myself tomorrow to run some errands... Thomas is carpooling to work. I'm hoping all the crazy Dallas drivers will give me a break.

2. Thomas and I are starting "Boot Camp" week tomorrow morning at 6:30 am... we're forcing ourselves to go running every morning until it becomes a habit. Yay for getting in shape!

3. Online classes are going better now that I have Thomas turn the internet off for several hours during the day (somehow he can do it remotely from his desk at work!) so that I don't get distracted by the interweb of social media :)

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Lacking motivation



It seems to me that procrastination often involves chocolate and/or coffee... (remember this?)... well it's happened multiple times since then. Right now I'm enjoying a latte with a chocolate wafer roll as seen above, while trying to swat away the mosquitoes that somehow got into our 2nd floor apartment. Texan mosquitoes have it in for me, I swear. All those years growing up in Africa I did not get bitten as much as I have been in the past two weeks since we've moved to Texas. I guess I'd rather the Texan mosquitoes like me than the African ones, since they don't carry malaria over here. Also... who knew it could rain so much in Texas? I thought this was supposed to the land of blistering sunshine. Stupid hurricanes... I haven't seen the sun in two weeks.
Righto. Back to writing a scintillating essays about the ancient Sumerian society, and the proper division of power between the US state and national governments (no offense meant to those who enjoy such things... the word "politics" makes me gag). Can you believe that this is how I am spending my last 6 hours of undergraduate coursework? Ugh. JBU's core curriculum needs some serious work.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

July 4th weekend, continued

We had our 4th of July BBQ on the 5th. We were too busy playing with fire on the 4th.

FOOD:




Ben's famous apple pie

Pavlova with whipped cream and fruit in the pattern of the USA flag

The entertainment choice of the weekend (apart from fireworks): funny youtube videos



And of course, more playing with fire...

They stuffed firecrackers inside an old flashlight

And set it off. It made a satisfying "bang"

All the youtube video watching and playing with fire wore Thomas out

We're back home in Dallas now, and it's back to the old grindstone. Thomas is at work, and I'm supposed to be working on my online classes. So I'll go do that now...

Monday, July 5, 2010

Being patriotic

Happy birthday America! I feel a little weird being a Brit and singing the national anthem and all the other patriotic things that this holiday brings... but hey, I'll be a dual citizen in a few years. And I think America is awesome.

Some pictures from our day:

You can't tell from the picture, but we were sitting on a (reinforced) roof at some people's house watching New Braunfel's firework display

Bekah & Sarah, take 1... hmmm

Take 2... that's better

Cool fireworks shots






Then we went back to the Congdon household and set off our own fireworks

Boys and fire/explosions/blowing stuff up...

Chaos

Abby & Lydia

Sarah & Abby

More fireworks



This one emitted ridiculously bright flashes of light... no one could look straight at it

Lydia with a roman candle

Joseph, Josh, Lydia

 What strange cousins we have...

Bekah & Sarah once more...

Bekah and Josh...

Let's try that again

Yay for family and holidays and summertime! Bring on the BBQ and floating down the river on tubes tomorrow!

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