Thursday, February 28, 2013

My Harry Potter Fix - Least Favorite edition


This week's Harry Potter Fix is all about least favorite characters... which was interesting to consider. All of JKR's characters are there for a reason, so obviously I don't like all of them, but I understand why they are part of the story. Some of them I just don't like because I find them annoying, not because they are "villains."

"Poisonous toadstools don't change their spots." - Ron Weasley

1. Least Favorite Hogwarts Student


I always found Pansy Parkinson annoying. She's a bully, she's frequently described as either "simpering" or "shrieking," and she is in love with Draco. The scene in Book 6 when Harry is invisible in the Slytherin compartment on the Hogwarts Express, and Pansy is stroking Draco's hair and described as looking like she has won the best prize EVER.... barf.

Also, that GIF up there. "Someone grab him!" SERIOUSLY.

2. Least Favorite Muggle

Let's be honest... there really aren't too many choices here. There are maybe 6 or 7 Muggle characters of any importance in the HP series, and you can't pick someone like the Muggle Prime Minister (loved that chapter) or Frank Bryce. I have to go with Aunt Marge.


She is also a bully, she is clearly a glutton, and she is just extremely rude. Some people just don't know when to shut their mouths, you know? On Pottermore, JKR explained that a lot of Marge's sour attitude is because of her unrequited love of Colonel Fubster... but is that really an excuse to act like a big jerk?

Fun side note: the actress that played Aunt Marge in PoA also played The Trunchbull (another big bully) in Matilda. : )

3. Least Favorite Death Eater

Barty Crouch..... junior!


Ew, ew, ew. First of all, the actor does that tongue-flick thing, which is super creepy. Secondly, I don't think the character has a conscience or soul (ha! literally). He treats Winky like crap, even though she sticks her neck out for him. He kills his own father. He impersonates some poor man and keeps him locked in a trunk for an entire school year, and oh yeah, the whole thing with being in league with Voldemort.

A really despicable human being. "I'll be welcomed back like a hero!" Ew.

4. Least Favorite Hogwarts Teacher

I feel like there are plenty of teachers to pick from here, which is unfortunate. However, I think my final answer is going to be Professor Binns.


History of Magic could be a really interesting subject, one that could really have supplemented the canon, instead of a bunch of exposition tossed around by Hermione. However, we're stuck with the ghost of Binns. He doesn't really take notice of the students, and the one time they do speak up, he gets their names all wrong (which is a big pet peeve of mine today, and probably influenced my decision). I had a professor in college - ironically, it was for Music History - who also had a monotone voice and talked through her teeth without really moving her lips.... which made it difficult to pay attention in class. Luckily, she was still a good teacher and I did manage to learn a lot from her despite the lack of inflection in the lecture.

Seriously though, could we really not find anyone else to teach History of Magic after Binns died? Is it a question of budget? Sheesh.


And there's my HP fix for this week : ) Looking forward to the next one!
See ya later-
K.

Dinner Time Tuesday (on Thursday... again)

Well.

I jinxed myself with the whole "WE HAVE INTERNET!!!" thing, because pretty much an hour after I blogged, the internet disappeared. A. was very keen on blaming the satellite service. I started on this track, and then after a day and a half of misdirected blame, I thought... perhaps it's the router.

So this morning I unplugged everything in the router and modem, and then replugged everything and chose a different port on the router. Seven hours later, it appears the wireless internet is still working, so I'm feeling very technologically successful right now. (I know I'm not, but let me enjoy it while it lasts!)

Before I jinx myself again, I want to post about Dinner Time Tuesday, because this week... it was pretty sweet.


(Thanks Becky for the link up! : )

As I've mentioned before with the dieting... we've been trying to eat a little healthier. This was actually made easier, instead of harder, by the move, for two reasons: 1) we had to restock the fridge, and 2) it's been hard to find ANYTHING. Also, packing, unpacking, moving, and painting take a surprising amount of sweat and energy. I never realized just how big of a work-out painting was. I have muscles hurting that I didn't know existed. In related news, yesterday when I weighed in I was down exactly two pounds from last week! I also broke a "decade" (what my mom and I call sets of 10 pounds). So excited.

Moving on... so I pinned this a while ago on a tip from my MOH, who said it was easy and delicious:






She was correct!

I finally unpacked the gorgeous set of casserole dishes that A.'s grandma got me for Christmas. They are the Confetti set in the temp-tations brand.


It's a set of twelve casserole dishes, all different sizes; as well as a serving platter, six of these cast-iron serving trays, and (I think) four of these tempered-glass trivets. I LOVE THEM SO MUCH ALREADY. It's the first time I got to use them since it seemed silly to unpack them all, then repack them, and unpack them again. I didn't want to risk breaking them at all.


So this is all of the ingredients minus the rice and chicken mixed together... it didn't look very appetizing actually...


...But after I added everything and spread it out in the casserole, it looked pretty good. And also, it smelled AMAZING. Out of this giant casserole dish, A. and I each had one serving, and we were both full. I scooped up six remaining servings into Rubbermaid containers for lunches and have been taking one every day this week.

When I make this again I will probably add more salsa and DEFINITELY more salt. A. says he wants to add more cheese, as well. But this is definitely a repeat recipe. Yum!

And now... off to do some Target shopping. Not enough time tonight to go wandering around Target as per my usual, but I think we are going out to dinner for Valentine's Day finally, so that's okay with me. : )

Later!
K.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

LET THERE BE INTERNET!!!

I'm backkkkkkkkkkkk!

Today I took a personal day from work to stay home and wait for our new internet to get installed.

It wasn't a horrible day, but let me say this: I HATE when utility companies give you a four-hour block to sit around and wait for them to show up. My four-hour block was designated from 8 AM to 12 PM. Guess when the internet guys showed up?

That's right. 12:56 PM.

I get so annoyed because I have to sit around and wait at the house. I feel TRAPPED. Sometimes it's not even that I necessarily want to go anywhere, it's that I can't. Today I actually did have other stuff to get done outside of the house, so I was frustrated. Also, frustrated because my normal (part-time) work hours are 7:45 AM-1:15 PM. So I pretty much could have worked almost all of my day and saved the personal day for a beautiful fun day instead.

Instead, I did three loads of laundry and painted the living room. Yes. I painted one coat on the entire living room in the time it took for the internet guys to get everything installed. I also "watched" Tangled and The Emperor's New Groove. Our DVD collection is getting a work-out since we still don't have cable until Saturday.

It's okay, I guess, because now we have internet again! : )

In the meantime, I am sitting here listening to the dishwasher run. A. says it sounds like World War III. : ) It is pretty loud, actually. We are getting used to the walls in the new house, which seem kind of thin. To be fair, I think any house would seem like it had thin walls after living in the very sturdy, built-with-brick-in-the-1800s-probably old place. We officially have everything moved out of the ex-house, and we are going to do one final walk through tomorrow to make sure it's in decent shape before we turn in our keys and garage door openers. CRAZY!!!

Today while I was waiting for the internet crew, I was also poking around in the Bible looking for potential readings for our wedding. I wasn't having much luck. I'm not so much a fan of the "submission" idea, it's just not me, and I feel like it would just make A. laugh. Luckily, one of my best friends J. is doing our reading and is also big fan of poetry, so I asked him if he could find some potential poems to consider for the ceremony. Because he's awesome, he had already been looking at some ever since I asked him in December. Just to make A. nervous though, I told him I found THE BIBLE VERSE and sent it to him while he was at work:


That's Song of Songs, Chapter 7, in case you are curious. When A. came home I started doing a dramatic reading. He laughed. : )

If you are married... what kind of readings did you include in your wedding ceremony? Let me know!

Be back soon for Dinner Time Tuesday : )
Until then,
K.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

My Harry Potter Fix: Pinterest Edition

Hosted by Latte and a PrayerOne Haole Girl,  It's the Journey. and Rebeckann's Random Thoughts

This week's Harry Potter fix is a Pinterest edition... which is right up my alley!

I got a Pinterest account last summer and have been hooked ever since.


Beauty and the Beast and HP... love them both!



Source: etsy.com via Kristin on Pinterest


Want.


No kidding, when I saw that one I laughed for about five minutes straight. It still cracks me up.

Source: 9gag.com via Kristin on Pinterest



There are more, but those are my faves. : )
Enjoy!
-K.

Dinner Time Tuesday... on Thursday

Oh hey there!

Still no internet at the new place. Grrr....

Instead I am back at the old, freezing ex-house, waiting for the realtor to show up with some potential renters. I figured while I was sitting here I might as well bring my laptop and update my blog! (And do other things.)

On Tuesday, Becky hosted a link-up for "Dinner Time Tuesdays"... and of course, I had no way of updating anything, but I DID take pictures of what I cooked for dinner on Tuesday night!



I bring you... Stuffed Peppers! : )

I know there are many variations of this recipe out there, but this is one that I grew up with, that I have "health-ified" using lean ground turkey instead of beef.


Yum, yum, yum!


First I brown lean ground turkey... I use the 93/7 variety when I'm cooking it with other things (not burgers!)


I usually use Knorr's (or Lipton's) Mexican rice, but I didn't have any of that, so I used some Taco rice instead. Still yummy!


Then I mixed the browned ground turkey and rice all together...


....and I hollowed out some green bell peppers. 
Then I used a big cooking spoon to transfer the ground turkey/rice mix into each pepper. 
I topped each pepper with a little bit of tomato sauce and then baked them in the oven for a little bit. 
I don't generally bake them for very long because I don't like my peppers to get soggy. :-P

I wish I had taken pics of tonight's dinner because I'm pretty proud of it. It was a totally thrown-together meal, because I had stuff I HAD to use. So I cooked a spaghetti squash and paired that with DelGrosso's spaghetti sauce, of the extra tomato-onion-garlic variety. And I halved three chicken breasts and coated them with sun-dried tomato marinade (by Kraft). We each had a half-chicken breast with the spaghetti squash on the side... So yummy!

Thanks for visiting : )
K.



Saturday, February 16, 2013

VERY LATE Harry Potter Fix... but it's happening!


OK, guys.

I still don't have cable or internet at the new house. So I took a break from painting and unpacking and came back to the ex-house to change more addresses. And while I was here, I looked at the blog and went OH, CRAP.

I ALMOST missed it.

My girl Becky is now a co-host for My Harry Potter Fix... and I was NOT going to miss her first one!

So here we go. : )

1. If you could be any Harry Potter character, which one would you be, and why? 

I never really thought about this! The obvious choice is Hermione because she is super smart and gutsy. Girl power! On the other hand, I've always held a soft spot in my heart for the Weasley twins. They are so funny and still smart, brave, and savvy. If I was Fred or George I feel like I could get away with my bad puns on a regular basis. : )
 
2. Favorite single chapter in a Harry Potter book? 

First of all, let me preface this by saying: I'm a huge nerd. (Obviously.) But I really like the O.W.L. chapter in Order of the Phoenix. Overall it's definitely not my favorite book... but I loved reading about all of the students studying and reviewing for exams, and then the process of taking them. It's the one chapter that really sticks out to me, especially since my books are packed up somewhere and I have no idea where they are to skim through and consider anything different.
 
3. What would your ideal class schedule at Hogwarts look like? 

Let's see... after taking my O.W.L.s on MuggleNet last year, I know I would be terrible at a few of the subjects. But I would absolutely include Charms, Transfiguration, Defense Against the Dark Arts, and probably Arithmancy or Ancient Runes (nerd). I'm not an outdoorsy person, generally, so I would probably steer clear of Magical Creatures and Herbology. Also, I'd like Slughorn's version of Potions (who needs the added stress of Prof. Snape?) and a live version (not ghost version) of History of Magic. : )

I promise once I have internet again I'll start submitting questions... and I look forward to reading everyone else's when I have time : )
Thanks for visiting!!!
K. 

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

MOVING

I'm backkkkkkkkkk!

Well... I'm sitting in my freezing cold ex-house with my computer, waiting to hear from the cable people.

They had to do a "serviceability survey" on our new house before we could get the cable transferred... even though this past weekend, we moved everything. So our ex-house is pretty much empty save the modem and cleaning materials. Since they only have the landline number (YES, we still have a landline, I know...) I have to check the ex-house every day for voicemails. They called twice yesterday around 2:30 but did not leave voicemails. So here I sit. Cold. And finally blogging.

With the help of our families and some of A's groomsmen (friends and cousin) we managed to get 95% of our stuff moved on Saturday. I DROVE THE U-HAUL. It was epic. Unfortunately, I did not get any pictures. The day went smoothly and when I got on the scale Sunday morning, I discovered I lost three pounds... which wasn't a big surprise as I earned 20 activity points and we didn't have many opportunities to sit and eat since we were moving ALL THE THINGS.

I gained all that weight back in an hour this morning eating fastnachts people brought in to the teacher's lounge, but... you gotta do what you gotta do.

Anyway, our days have been spent unpacking and cleaning and moving things and without internet and cable at the new place... this means the blog has been sparse. I'm sorry. I was doing so well!

Here is Sunday morning's accomplishment:


I started with this mess around 7:15 AM....


And this is the progress I made by 10 AM! I was very proud of myself.

I am also very proud of this:


This is our junk drawer. For now.

If it actually stays that organized, I will be astounded. Our new house came with a silverware organizer, and what do you know, we already have one. So I used the baskets from our old junk drawer in addition to the new silverware organizer (which is actually pretty flimsy plastic, anyway) and voila! 

In addition to all of the moving insanity, I also managed to order our wedding invitations AND the guys got fitted for their tuxes on Saturday. Needless to say, I'm feeling a lot better this week than I did last week. (Despite the fastnachts.)

Annnnnnnnd on that note... I need to get up and move before my fingers freeze to the keyboard. I promise I'll be back soon! As long as the cable guy calls with good news...

Until then-
K.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Painting

Well HEY!

I haven't been here on the blog for a few days.

Want to know why?

PAINT.

Olympic - Paint & Primer in One - "Brandied Pears"

Olympic - Paint & Primer in One - .... I can't remember the name of this blue. Oops.


A. and I have been painting fiends.

Here's what I've discovered about painting:

  • I hate painter's tape. HATE. IT. 
  • .... in a related vein, if you're buying painter's tape, get the good stuff. Not the cheap stuff. Because even though you are buying four gallons of paint plus dropcloths, paint trays, brushes, rollers, and all of the other accouterments.... you will NOT be as frustrated in the end if you just bite the bullet and get the good painter's tape that will actually stick to your wall.
  • Edgers are miraculous. Who knew about edgers? Answer: not me, before Sunday. 
  • ..... but don't edge an entire wall and then start to paint the rest, because the edge will dry and you won't be able to blend anything.
  • After you've taped around all of the outlet covers, someone will say, "You know, you could have just removed the outlet covers." And if you didn't think about it, the best possible retort you have in your arsenal is "Well, we don't have any screwdrivers at this house yet."
  • Buy more than three dropcloths if you are painting more than one room. (*facepalm*)
  • Even if your house is 60 degrees, prop open a window. Because otherwise you are going to feel like you sandpapered your throat after you spent two days in an unventilated paint zone.
And most importantly...
  • If you have ordered a refrigerator, remember to paint the refrigerator hole and give it enough time to dry before, you know, it's actually delivered. 
In other news,

Yesterday was weigh-in Wednesday and that was kind of a disappointment. Although that shouldn't come as a surprise as my diet was totally blown to shreds last weekend between eating out and our Superbowl party. The good news is, I am back on track, and also painting is kind of a work out. Also, you can't really eat while you're painting, so that's been a few large chunks of time where I'm not even thinking about food.

The last week I have been kind of down, but today I felt like I was back to normal. Which is nice. I think a lot of it was stress related to various things, but some of it was also homesickness, because I haven't been home in a while. Luckily, my parents and brother are coming to visit this weekend (and help move), and I think looking forward to that has helped. Also, I am lucky that I work with some really awesome and supportive people who noticed things were off and did their best to help me out. 

SO THIS STUPID "NOREASTER" BETTER NOT SCREW THINGS UP TOMORROW OKAY.

If you get caught up in nasty weather... be safe!
Be back soon, hopefully in the new place : )
K.


Monday, February 4, 2013

Harry Potter Fashion, take 3


This week the Harry Potter link-up continues with Harry Potter fashion. This has been fun but I'm not going to lie, I'm excited for some HP questions next week : ) 

I decided that since Goblet of Fire is my favorite book, I would do some Durmstrang and Beauxbatons looks this week. The Yule Ball was a given. And it is SO DARN COLD outside that I decided to give them some warm things to wear, as well : )

Enjoy!




Have a great week, everyone : )
-K.

Super Bowl Sunday

Hey world,

So as nearly everyone in the United States knows, yesterday was the Super Bowl. I had no interest in the game yesterday, as we're big Steelers ("Stillers") fans, but we had a party anyway. (I have to admit that I have been a big grump all weekend and I was NOT in the mood to have a bunch of people over. My stress headaches have been getting out of control, and A. and I have both been a little on edge lately.)   I saw a couple of the commercials and watched most of halftime- not a big Beyonce fan but DAMN, that was awesome, and DESTINY'S CHILD!!!!

But as usual, the job for me was mostly: food.


In addition to that table, we also had five pizzas, crab meltaways & puffs (courtesy of A's mom) and this table:


Basically... there was a lot of food. And I took the day off from Weight Watchers.

Here are the main things I made: 

"Katydid" cookies - chocolate, caramel, and pecan - I don't have a recipe for these becauseeeeee they are from a pre-made mix that I got from a school fundraiser. (Tasty Batters) [Did I mention we're moving and I'm trying to use stuff in the freezer?]


Beer Dip - My Aunt Dawn gave this recipe to me when we moved into our current house, along with a chip-n-dip bowl. It usually goes over well : ) And it is MIGHTY good with pretzels! I always make A. drink the leftover beer because I hate it. 

Beer Dip
2 packages softened cream cheese (I used one fat-free and one Neuftachel)
1 packet ranch dressing mix
1/3 cup beer
2 cups fat-free shredded cheddar cheese

Mix cream cheese, beer, and ranch dressing mix together in a bowl. Mix in cheddar cheese. Serve with pretzels.



"Dunkaroo Dip" - I got this recipe from Pinterest and we all enjoyed it : ) I served it with Nilla Wafers, Girl Scout Trefoil (shortbread) cookies, and Angry Bird cookies. (I was going to get Teddy Grahams but then I saw the Angry Birds, and our nephew LOVES them.)

So today is back on track with the diet. Luckily, with moving things lately, I have been getting lots of exercise. Our current house is two stories and the new house is a split level, so both houses involve moving the boxes up and down stairs... and I guess I should keep packing now, since I took the day off of school to recuperate from Weekend of Migraines 2013. 

Have a good week, everyone : )
K. 



Friday, February 1, 2013

Happy dance!

OKAY.

It's been crazy.

But.

WE ARE NOW HOMEOWNERS!!!

and

I OFFICIALLY HAVE MY MASTERS!!!

I'm a big kid now, everyone.

This week has been so long and exhausting. Neither of us have been sleeping well between this crazy weather and our nerves. Today I was so tired and I just wanted to be at the new house doing stuff - but it is also the end of the marking period, and the kids were absolutely bonkers today. It wasn't a very good combination.

BUT, now it is the weekend! And I'm doing my happy weekend dance. (Actually I'm sitting on the couch with my feet up, eating some Skittles. But still happy it's the weekend!) Tom and Jean-Ralphio can do a happy dance for me.



We're having a big Super Bowl party on Sunday, so I'm planning on popping in with a few recipes before then. Trying to make sure I have some healthy options this year!

Anyway, we're going to try to get some stuff moved in before we go out for A.'s grandpa's birthday dinner later. Woo!
Have a great weekend, everyone : )
K.