Monday, July 31, 2006

Happy Birthday Nancy

My 'old friend' Nancy recently told me,

"I love meeting new people and finding out that you're old friends."

Yesterday was Nancy's birthday and I wanted to give her something just right {especially after she had set the bar so high with her gift to me last week-- she made a beautiful wall hanging made entirely out of recycled materials including parts of a piano. Sounds interesting, eh? I will post a picture of it soon.}

On Saturday, we had a sewing morning, which turned out to be a wonderful collaboration of ideas, advice and a bit of sewing. It was so much fun that I just kept on sewing after everyone left and the result was this adorable little purse for Nancy's birthday.

I turned out perfectly, and I didn't even have a definite plan in mind when I started it-- it just kind of made itself. I wish every project turned out so well! Happy birthday Nancy.

Here's the tag.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

A Job Well Done

I just saved my company $15,000.

No, I did not identify an inefficiency in one of our processes. I just made myself some lunch—or, should I say, I tried to make myself lunch. The directions on my box of rice instructed me to coat the rice with olive oil and heat for 4 minutes, stirring once to ensure uniform heating of the grains. The water was not to be added until the next step (I thought this was odd and re-read the directions twice).

After 2 minutes I opened the microwave to stir the grains for ‘uniform heating’, and was accosted by a cloud of smoke. I slammed the microwave door to keep the smoke from escaping and notified Facilities about my little situation. They came right up and took the whole microwave outside.

Andy, the Facilities Maintenance Supervisor, informed me that I saved the organization $15,000 with my quick response to avert a temporary evacuation of the building. He was duly impressed that I had never left the microwave during the two minutes it took to thoroughly fry my rice and burn a whole through the tupperware. (Not leaving your cooking food is their cardinal rule of microwave use.) I always thought they were a bit anal about these little microwave fires. Now I know it’s because a little microwave fire costs $15,000.

I can hear our secretary re-telling someone the story right now. Maybe my manager will send out an email recognizing my contribution to our organization’s safety-culture. After all that hard work, I’m ready for lunch. I’m going to Arby’s.

Post Script: As it turns out, in reading the directions three times, I somehow missed the words MEDIUM POWER written in all caps.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Thank You Muchos

This is a shout out to several good friends and great family. Thank you for a wonderful birthday. I appreciated all the well wishes, e-cards, e-bouquets, phonecalls and text messages. A stressful day at work can be quite fun with so many little pleasant interruptions!

After the work part of the day was over, things got even better. I had several friends over to help make and help enjoy some delectable dinner. This is the twenty-eight year old me with my delectable dinner.

My friend/running partner took these pictures for me during the festivities. She is very nice and didn’t want to interrupt anyone by using a flash so some of the people are a bit blurry. While most of us were dishing up our delectables, Evan was fascinated by a magazine. It must not have been very interesting though, as Nicole appears to have fallen asleep.

Nicole and Caleb (pictured—kind of) bought these party hats at Savers for the occasion. Pink ones for girls and sports ones for boys. Rudy, who is the only person you can really see in this picture, wins the MVPA for the evening (most valuable party attendee). He is surprisingly handy in the kitchen and wields a butter brush like a natural. Rudy can also tell you when your salmon is done, or over done.

The lovely Nancy and Lissa deserve a particular thank you for washing so many dishes! (No I did not make Nancy wash dishes with a dislocated shoulder, I don’t know how she does that.)

Moe, Bryce and Caleb with a miniscule camera. You can also see the new Moleskine I received from Christy behind them.

A good one of Christy, Lissa and I.

Christy has a tradition of doing ‘big-lips’ in pictures. She loves big-lips because she always looks beautifully seductive but all her non-polynesian friends tend to look a bit ridiculous.

Thank you all.

And just for Ann, here is the best recipe of the evening:

I think I’ll call it Savory Lemon Salmon
3 lbs of great Salmon
1/2 c Sour Cream
1/2 c Mayonnaise
1 – 2 Lemons
3 t Chicken bullion (2 or 3 cubes)
1 T Rice wine or white vinegar
Green onions or chives
Salt and Pepper

Lay salmon cuts in a pan greased with olive oil. Lightly cover with salt, pepper and plenty of fresh lemon juice. Dissolve chicken bullion in the vinegar. Mix in sour cream and mayonnaise. Spread cream mixture over the salmon. Top with diced greens, slices of lemon and whole peppercorns.

Bake at 350 for 20-30 min- remove when fish is flaky.