Posts Tagged ‘birthday’

Why no, I’m not working today

Monday, October 17th, 2011

Today and tomorrow are fall break!

And yesterday was Crockett’s birthday!

If your definition of epic is ‘yeah, that was pretty awesome’, then it’s been an epic weekend. (If your definition of epic is the actual definition of epic then I apologize for how I like to use it.)

On Friday we went out with a few of Crockett’s friends. For 10 hours. (We met the early birds at a 4 pm happy hour and stayed out with the latecomers until after midnight – who’s 33 now, huh?)

me and crockett at empire

Based on the reactions on facebook, this is the most best my hair has ever looked.

How could I not share that with you?

On Saturday we recuperated.

On Sunday, birthday funday really began.

We started with brunch at Lola, one of Crockett’s favorite places.

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It was nice enough that we could sit on the patio. (Please excuse my dirty camera lens.)

I told the host and our server that it was Crockett’s birthday. He told me to stop. I said ‘not on your life’.

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And then we got free cinnamon sugar doughnuts, proving pretty soundly that I was right and he was wrong.


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We ordered brunch drinks – a peach mimosa for me and a bloody maria for the birthday boy, and then got down to doughnut eating while we made our meal choices.

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And while Crockett fielded birthday calls, left and right.

He’s apparently quite popular.

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Here’s the thing about fried food. It may be guilt inducing, sometimes. It may be overkill, sometimes.

Sometimes, though? It’s perfect. These doughnuts were warm and crispy and every single bite was absolutely necessary.

Lola is a little tough for me – they have a lot of bell peppers in their hashes and stuff. I went with a safe choice.

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Chicken and waffles.

Wait, did I say safe?

I meant delicious. It was a brined chicken breast with buttermilk waffles (I think), chorizo gravy, and a raspberry chipotle syrup. I made Crockett a bite right off, so that I wouldn’t eat it all before he got to try it.

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For his own meal, Crockett went for the pulled pork benedict, served on chile cornmeal muffins.

It was tasty, but it was no chicken and waffles.

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I also caved and ordered coffee. I’m trying to move away from coffee in restaurants, because I keep getting refills and then I feel a little jittery until mid-afternoon. Sure, I could just turn down the refills, but it’s better if I don’t have to put myself in that position. I’m not strong like that.

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A chicken waffleicious bite, right there.

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Lola is in a really great neighborhood of Denver, and they’re one of the locations where you can rent these bikes. You pay $6 for the day, and can take a bike from any location for up to half an hour for free. It’s kind of expensive, but we had some time to kill before our next stop, so we rented a couple and rode around the neighborhood, looking at adorable houses and new condos and dreaming of a slightly more urban life. When we brought the bikes back, we realized we still had some time to kill, so we checked them out again and rode over the highway into downtown Denver. We tooled around for half an hour, through the parks – it was a very effective way to rid ourselves of our brunch induced desire to nap.

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It’s a good thing, because our big event for the day was pretty physical. Indoor skydiving!

(Those two people are not us.)

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These two people are us.

Once we started the skydiving, I had to lock up all my stuff, so I don’t have any pictures. I do have a video, but in general it was like this – we laid on our stomachs in the wind and tried really hard to learn what some people make look easy.

We were pretty good, honestly.

Afterwards, we went to Crockett’s brothers house for dinner and delicious homemade Italian style cheesecake.

It was a lovely day.

Happy birthday, baby!

home again home again

Wednesday, August 17th, 2011

Yes, this is my third post of the night. I apologize if you’re reading this in an RSS feed and are like DUDE, EMMA, LET SOMEONE ELSE TALK.

Last Friday (yeah, I’m still back there – that’s why three posts in one night but this is totally the last one probably unless Crockett comes over here with some wine and then I may just keep going you never know) we woke up in Mackinaw City, Michigan, with a mid-afternoon arrival planned for Mio, Michigan.


That trip was never going to happen without adequate sustenance. Three hours of driving takes it’s toll, yo.

The Mackinaw City Pancake Chef had limited choices, but I managed to put together a good plate.

I had a whole pile of melon salad, a few strawberries, and two bites each of scrambled eggs, grits with syrup, hash browns with ketchup, sausage, and french toast with cherries hiding underneath.

I killed this plate while the people at our table who didn’t go for the buffet waited for their food, and then twiddled my thumbs. Downside of the buffet.

Upside of the restuarant?

You mention that there are a couple of birthdays in the group and they bust out two whole freaking cakes.

After breakfast Crockett and I walked back to our motel, to burn off a little breakfast.

Crockett went old school.

Doesn’t this look just like the picture on the Pancake Chef menu? I’m such a good photographer I sometimes don’t even know what to do with myself.

I asked Crockett to take a picture of me in front of the bridge, and then right when he pushed the button I realized we were standing in front of a lighthouse.


I love lighthouses. I find them romantic. Probably because I was never a lighthouse keeper.

After the lighthouse, I was pretty much done with Mackinaw, so we headed down to Mio.

The Mio reunion was Crockett’s mom’s family (everything prior was Crockett’s dad’s family), and it was much more structured. They reserved space at the Mio park and set up a tent and had meals planned and all sorts of magical magic.

The camp came with lots of space to play, which the kids of the fam took full advantage of.

I’m not going to lie. Crockett’s mom’s family is enormous. I’m still not sure I knew some of the names that I thought I knew. They’re also super nice.

We celebrated the birthdays again. (Yes, these are the same two kids celebrating. Yes, this is the third time we’re having cake. Yes, they are kids after my own heart.)

We also had the grown up camper’s equivalent of birthday cake: Cheetos and red wine (Big House Red – surprisingly delicious even in a Super 8 cup). There were two full tables of food – pulled pork, sloppy joes, ten million kinds of chips, brownies, candy, and salads? Oh my god salads. Tuna salads, pasta salads, fruit salads, ambrosia salads, potato salads, vegetable salads… no plain salad salad, but basically anything else you can think of that ends in salad? Yeah, they had that salad.

Then, sadly, we ran into some Mother Nature shaped issues.

In this case, Mother Nature was shaped like a whole lot of raindrops. For a whole long time.

I was borrowing sweatshirts and wiggling into my pants in the backseat of the car. From my position here in my 70 degree Colorado evening, I’m having a hard time remembering the cold, but I know it was there.

The family was cool enough that being under the tent was pretty slick, so we survived the rain.

Two days later, we started the drive home.

P.S. I would have included pictures of Pioneer General (aka Am-Depot), but I was too busy buying Amish knives and Amish candy and wondering if I could pull off and Amish straw hat to remember to take any. Sad, I know. The knives are badass, though.


Emma from the block

Thursday, January 20th, 2011

You know what the best thing about birthdays is?

Leftover birthday cake.

For breakfast.

Yesterday was sort of a whirlwind of snow and… well, honestly, I don’t know what else I did yesterday. Mostly, homework sprinkled with some mild packing.

Speaking of sprinkling:


Crockett works from home about half the time, and he is less of a morning person than I am. In other words, when it’s 5 pm and I’m all ‘dude it’s time to throw in the towel on this whole ‘work’ thing’, he’s all ‘I’m just getting my groove on’.

Oh, I did do something else yesterday. I went to the grocery store. I bought steaks, because they were on sale, and I was going to make chili, and the stew beef was more expensive than the steak, and a little old lady who was also shopping convinced me it was a good idea.

Less good of an idea was buying dried beans at 2 pm, thinking we’d have chili at 7 or whatever. Doable? Yes. Likely? No.

Instead Crockett salted the bejesus out of them, I made a burgundy mushroom sauce, we whipped up some brown rice, and we got our snowdinner on.

Mmm, snowdinner.

Also necessary for snowdinner? Neck cuddling…

… lap cuddling…

… and just plain cuddling.

Why yes, it is Thursday morning and we have made a full circle, meal wise.

I’m a fan of closure like that.

Birthday dinner

Wednesday, January 19th, 2011

Last night we headed out fairly early in the evening to meet my parents for dinner. Because it was my birthday, and I wanted dinner.

I wore my yellow high heels. It was my birthday, and I wanted heels.

Crockett and I had a couple of stops to make prior to dinner – primarily a visit to a local electronics store where I was all ‘hey babe I should totally make jewelry out of resistors’ and he was all ‘hey babe, I love that you’re queen of the nerds and all, but can you shush while I concentrate?’. When we arrived at Southern Sun, Mom and Dad were both waiting for us.

Very seriously waiting for us.

Southern (and Mountain) Sun is a Boulder fixture. They brew their own delicious beer and have lots of burgers, great grilled cheese, and a lot of vegetarian options. The staff all rotates through the kitchen and the bar and the the floor, which makes for a unique experience.

Since we had to wait for a table, Crockett ran up to the bar and got me a beer. Annapurna Amber, in this case. Barley and a little hoppy – not something I would have gotten myself. It was good. Sometimes you have to branch out, ya know? Even if it is your birthday and you don’t necessarily wanna.

Beer for everyone.

Yes, there were lots of healthy choices (probably). I didn’t see them, because I zoomed directly into the Junk Burger and did not pass go. Junk burger: bacon, cheese, sautéed mushrooms and onions, roasted garlic mayo on a tasty tasty burger. I got Swiss, cheese wise. I love this burger, y’all. It’s squishy where it should be squishy, crispy where it should be crispy, salty where it should be salty, and just generally everything you want in every bite.

Dad: identical plate. We didn’t plan it this way, we just have excellent taste.

Crockett: this was a reuben except where you might expect corned beef, you instead found turkey. Who knows. He liked it though.

Then we retired to my dad’s place for cake.

This cake is a tradition in my family. It was a tradition for my brother and I, but he’s vegan now, so I’m carrying on alone. My mom makes it.

Layer 1: Chocolate cake
Layer 2: Chocolate chips (added post baking, so they don’t get melted)
Layer 3: Chocolate pudding
Layer 4: Whipped cream
Layer 5: Flaked coconut
Layer 6: Maraschino cherries

I look forward to it all year. Seriously. Leftovers are currently in the fridge, and I’m considering making Wednesday ‘Emma eats only chocolate cake’ day.

well now it’s Judy’s turn to cry

Tuesday, January 18th, 2011

Who is Judy, you might ask?

I was going to title this post ‘it’s my party, I can cry if I want to’, but really, who wants to cry? Nobody, that’s who. Judy’s Turn to Cry was the follow up to It’s My Party, where the heroine triumphs over that damn Judy.

Just like I will triumph over this damn house.

With the help of instant espresso, since my coffee maker already made the journey to Crockett’s place.

And cake. Gigantic craggy walls of cake.

Yes, I had coffee and cake for lunch. You wanna make something of it?

Oh, right, I also had Dark Chocolate Covered Almonds from our trip to Trader Joe’s in Santa Fe. The Colorado state liquor rule maker folks really need to get their acts together so we can get a TJs here.

I’m going to miss a lot of the decorating I’d figured out at my house. Like my constantly available espresso cups.

My (previously attractive) stacks of home design and food magazines.

Empty shelves everywhere. Depressing, but also very modern. I could totally live in an empty room.

I just keep reminding myself that my best friends are with me and that I get to be with my favorite person ever like every day now.

Totally worth it.


you say it’s your birthday

Monday, January 17th, 2011

Oh wait, no you don’t.

I say it’s my birthday.

Because it is.

The big 30.

Guess what?

Crockett got me a camera!

A camera for blogging!

(I usually abstain from exclamation points but this totally deserves several.)

I have other really exciting news. Crockett and I are moving in together. That’s part of the reason you haven’t seen much of me lately – I’ve been packing. See also, birthday celebrations. However, this camera and I? We’re going places.

Off center boyfriend kissing places.

Beautiful bracelet (that I simply adore despite the fact that it was temporarily overshadowed by the ZOMGNEWCAMERA moment that followed) places.

Puppy butt places.

Puppy themed sock places.

In case you can’t tell, all of these pictures were taken without me moving from my present opening position on the couch. This one used optical zoom. OPTICAL ZOOM, people. I HAVE OPTICAL ZOOM.

Still life with briefcase and gnomes places.

And how could we forget, the ‘I’m already kind of tired of you taking pictures of me with your new camera’ places. It’s not my fault he’s so handsome. Really, it’s his fault. He should apologize to me.

Anyway. I have packing to do, and homework to do… but it’s my birthday, so I’m going to start with more camera playing. Just for a few minutes.

You support me in that, right?

the peanut butter solution

Saturday, October 23rd, 2010

Yesterday, I got back the two midterms I took last week.

I got an A on one of them.

…… crickets ……

I got an A on one of them!

If you are currently choosing to believe that means that I got an A on BOTH of them, I’m not going to stop you. You should review your deductive reasoning skills, maybe, but I still won’t stop you.

How would one start such a banner day, you ask?

With peanut butter oatmeal, of course. (Not familiar? Make oatmeal. Stir in peanut butter while it’s still hot. Eat.)  While I was making my peanut butter oatmeal, I also put together my lunch, to take to campus.

Clockwise: a Gala apple (I bought five pounds – there are a lot of apples in my life right now), Earthbound Farm Baby Herb Salad, low-fat Marie’s Bleu Cheese dressing, the bbq chicken I made Thursday, and the caramel corn I made last weekend. The caramel corn was based on Brave Tart’s recipe, available here, and is storing like a dream.

This didn’t actually turn out to be enough food, because between classes I hit up The Fitness Lab.

Yeah, that’s what we call the gym at a very nerdy engineering school


I love the gym. There is always at least one open treadmill, and there is a juice and coffee bar downstair. I’ve never actually visited the coffee bar, but I like that it’s there. Ya know?

I did two miles, which is the first run I’ve taken since I started feeling icky on Monday. It was, in a word, hard. Then I did an upper body workout, because it makes me feel macho. Sure, I don’t make creepy sex noises while I lift like the dude who always asks me about my tattoos, but I’m one tough cookie. Really.

Because my super strenous workout left me starving, I stopped at Sbux after my second class and had only my second pumpkin spice latte of the season.

I really need to learn to make these at home. I’m thinking I’ll start here, with the canned pumpkin option.


Birthday party time! My darling girlfriend Kelley wanted to go out for a night on the town, so she and her husband Chris and our friends Eden and Jay lined up babysitters, and out we went. (Crockett and I don’t need a babysitter – we basically need 10 minutes notice to find pants and we’re ready for a night out. It’s nice not having kids sometimes.)

Did I say pants? I meant shorts.

We went to a place in Boulder called Cantina Laredo, that was pretty tasty. The birthday girl dived right in with a pomegranate margarita, and then we ordered away.

A chile relleno and the Laredo platter, on my left (Eden) and my right (Crockett). Weirdly, the relleno could be stuffed with cheese or with beef and raisins. Raisins, y’all. Shockingly, Eden did not order the raisin rellenos.

A honey shrimp salad with honey vinaigrette and …. something. Something else. Something …. green? With slaw? Chris ate all of it, so the green stuff must have been tasty.

Helpful, aren’t I.

This is my dinner. Mango chicken salad with the same honey vinaigrette, mango margarita – before and after.

Drink service was slow. Like, half an hour from order time to sip time slow.

That’s why everyone is vertical in this photo.

Aren’t they gorgeous? (If you’re thinking no, please blame the poorly lit entryway, not my darling friends. They’re wicked hot, I swear.)

The birthday girl and her entourage went home to check on their babysitters, and Crockett and I went to see The Town.

I didn’t stop talking about it until like 2:30 in the morning, long past when Crockett had stopped listening, so clearly I liked it. Go, watch, love.

Happy Saturday, loves!