Sunday, August 30, 2009

Weekend and Macy's Goes to the Dogs

I spent yesterday helping out a local rescue group A Forever Home at the event Wags 'N' Whiskers in Shirlington. It was fun, and luckily not too sunny out cause we had lots of dogs there available for adoption. We got at least a dozen great applications and collected a decent amount in donations. It was a fun day. Then we had Funny Girl Goes Blog and her sister over for dinner last night.

Today I went to Macy's to finish buying my nephew's birthday gift (party in 3 hours!). Below is an actual account of what transpired and the corresponding conversation. It never fails to amaze me how inefficient Macy's is every time I go, and I always wonder why I keep going back . . .

Jeffro and I stood on line while 3 Ukranian guys were trying to apply for a store credit card and things were not going smoothly. After we'd stood there forever, a manager walked by and saw our completely frustrated faces and told us there was an open register across the store. We get over there, and of course the register is no longer open, so she kindly decided to ring us up. Jeffro had some coupons that we wanted to use, so we were going to put the items on his store credit card to do so.

Jeffro: I'd like to use my "$10 off" coupon on these purchases.

Manager: Well, let me see. It looks like these are our "everyday value" items so the coupons would not apply.

Jeffro: Well, the coupon here says most brand names are excluded. So if most brand names are excluded, and "everyday value" items are excluded, what exactly can you use this coupon on?

Manager: (silence)

Jeffro and me: (snickers and eye rolls. Now, I don't normally laugh right in someone's face, but this was just too good and could not be helped.)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Kora Restaurant

Monday night Jeffro and I went to Kora Restaurant by Morou as part of DC Restaurant Week. Morou is my favorite local chef, and I was very sad when Farrah Olivia closed (hopefully will reopen one day soon). In any case, the food at Kora was just about as incredible as I'd hoped. I started with the roasted red bell pepper, and Jeffro had the gnudi, which is a pasta. Mine was pretty good, but his was amazing. For the main course, I had the cannelloni with crab, fontina cheese, prosciutto, and sauteed spinach. I was a little worried that the crab would over power everything, but it was delicious and I just couldn't stop eating it. Somehow it was very rich, yet light at the same time. Jeffro had the halibut which was nice but paled by comparison to mine.

The menu at Kora is very diverse, some traditional Italian dishes, some with a twist like squid ink tagliatelle. Sophisticated dishes like pork shank ossobuco are offered, along with popular Italian fare like pizza. In other words, the menu offers something for everyone. I'm curious to see how it will do in this location, and hope that it fares much better than its predecessors.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Love and Theft Album Out Today

My favorite new country group, Love and Theft, is releasing its debut album World Wide Open today! I've got their live EP and they are fabulous. They are three guys who met up when they quit their day jobs and moved to Nashville to try to make it in country music. I guess they found the power of three to be better than one, and formed an incredibly talented group with beautiful harmonies. Listen to their hit single Runaway and preview the entire CD at Matter of fact, I'm waiting for a phone call from them this morning about the CD!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Keith Urban and Sugarland

Last night Jeffro and I went to the Verizon Center to see Keith Urban and Sugarland. I'd been having a terrible day for a variety of reasons, and I hate to say it but the concert didn't lift my spirits all that much when it took us nearly 2 hours of metro delays and incompetencies to get home. It was infuriating.

Keith Urban and Sugarland themselves were great, though Keith didn't play many songs from his latest album, which is kind of odd. And Sugarland didn't play for nearly long enough. Unfortunately, we were sitting far away, so most of the pics were taken on the big screen as my stupid camera couldn't focus very well on the stage. But here are a couple of shots to enjoy.

Sugarland on the big screen.

Stage shot of Keith Urban--he went running around the Verizon Center and wound up sitting on a makeshift stage near the back for a while so I was able to get a decent shot, not from the big screen.
Shot of the tour bus outside the Verizon Center. They also handed out free posters to everyone. It was pretty crazy.

This weekend will be busy, we are going to some friends for dinner tomorrow, the possibly having some people over on Sunday. In between, I hope to get some cleaning up done, but we'll see if that happens or not . . .

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Busy Weekend

I got a lot done this weekend, including finishing up my deck project (with another run to Home Depot), cleaning the house, watching Mad Men, playing with puppies, and grilling last night. These are all good things, but what I really wanted to do today was go to the pool. Our neighborhood has a million pools, and although I went to three of them, I was too paranoid I would run into someone I know and I just couldn't stand the mortification of facing a neighbor in a bathing suit. So I just came home and I'm pretty bummed about the whole thing. I'm pretty sure today is the quintessential pool day. So I will just shower, run errands, and do some things around the house. Boy am I bored. Jeffro is not a big sun worshipper, so doing something outdoors today was completely out of the question.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Jeffro's Amazing Marinade

Jeffro made this great marinade tonight for our grilled salmon. It was quite outstanding. Soy sauce, sesame oil, scallions, garlic, sugar, ginger, and red pepper. I added some wilted spinach and rice, and boy was it a great dinner.

And just when I thought I was having another tough day at work, I found out my neighbor has had this kind of a day:

Found out a dog she fostered died
Found out a fellow dog rescuer died
Found out a dog she fostered got loose and was running around

So I guess in comparison my day looked pretty darned good, though I got retested for allergies and found out some have improved slightly, but I have some new ones including a couple of food allergies. Fun!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Things I Love

Here is another installment of your favorite column, Things I Love. It's just been that kind of day.

I love it when:

1. Your boss is off work but she frantically e-mails you in the morning with something that she forgot to do and you have to do it immediately. How is this my problem? Happy Monday!

2. You suggest something for work based on conversations that have taken place where people love the idea. When you actually put the idea down on paper for them to see, you get criticized that the suggestion isn't really a great one. Um . . . we all loved it so why is it wrong all of a sudden?

3. Someone in the office who you don't get along with sends you an e-mail with three attachments and no message. Now granted I know what I'm supposed to do with the attachments, but he couldn't have written "Hi CCHarmony, please edit these documents for me. Thanks. Sincerely, The Asshole." BTW, this is also the same guy as in #2 above. It's a lovefest at my job!

4. Your sister, who's mad at you, e-mails a diatribe on why she's mad at you with bullet points, examples, supporting documents, etc. The sister who's not mad at you, in discussing the situation, provides the same bullet point list as if I need to review it yet again. So now I'm mad at both sisters.

5. A telemarketer pollster calls and asks for me, but it's really my boyfriend that he needs to talk to. I tell him that said boyfriend is eating dinner and probably doesn't want to talk to him right now. Telemarketer asks "when would be a good time to call back" and you say "he probably doesn't want to talk to you at all" and he says "great, I'll try again sometime soon."

Boy that felt good! Now it's on to the Carlyle for some wine!

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Highs and Lows

There were many highs this weekend:

Finally nearly completed year-long project to clean and waterproof/stain my deck!

Finally discovered cool young singer Charice. I missed the Oprah she was on, apparently, and she's going to take the world by storm. Great voice, but not sure about first single choice.

Got to visit some very cute puppies. Check it out here then scroll down to "Golden Septuplets."

Accomplished nearly all of my "to-do" list.

And some lows:

My sister is mad at me, long story. So my other sister didn't call today, probably cause sister #1 is mad and she doesn't know how to not get caught in the middle.

I found out about a party that I wasn't invited to that I was last time around.

It is Sunday and I have to go to work tomorrow. I didn't have a good day at work Friday and wound up leaving while the rest of the staff was having a happy hour cause I didn't want to be with them.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

RIP John Hughes

John Hughes, my favorite 80s filmmaker, died today. My favorite movie of all time is Sixteen Candles, but Ferris Bueller is a pretty close second. This has been a very sad year for celebrity deaths. RIP, John.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Kora . . . Italian by Morou Is Open!

Morou, my favorite local chef whose wonderful restaurant Farrah Olivia recently closed, has just opened Kora, an Italian restaurant/bar/lounge in Crystal City. This restaurant features cuisine by his brother Amadou Outtara. I can't wait to check it out! Make your reservation at Open Table. I'm pretty psyched, especially for the $20 Prix Fixe 3-course brunch! Morou, we're so glad you're back! (Don't forget everyone, DC Restaurant Week is August 24-30, featuring $35.09 fixed price dinners and $20.09 fixed price lunches, though Kora unfortunately does not seem to be participating.)

All About Dogs

This weekend started off with a visit to the new Lost Dog Cafe, recently opened on Columbia Pike. Jeffro and I had been to the Washington Blvd location many times before, but this new one just opened a couple of months ago so we went to check it out. Nice location, spacious, and a great menu including tons of interesting beer selections. Our waitress was very well-informed about the beer, and I wanted help picking something interesting so she suggested Sea Dog Wild Blueberry Wheat Ale. I can't find any info about it on the Sea Dog Brewery Web site, but it's definitely a great summer beer, refreshing and not too sweet. As soon as I took the cap off I got a strong whiff of fresh blueberries.

The weekend continued with puppy sitting for a neighbor's foster puppies--seven cute lab/shepherd mixes that were little balls of fur. I've been around a lot of puppies, but these were the sweetest, most even-tempered little things I'd ever seen. I don't know how I would choose if I had to pick one. I'm kind of sad that the weekend is over and I don't have to take care of them anymore.

On the recommendation of NOAAgirl, Jeffro and I watched The Best Years of Our Lives, made in 1948. Generally, I don't really like old movies much, but I have to admit this was pretty good and sucked you in from the start. We had to stop watching it halfway (it was 3 hours long!) so I think it kind of lost its momentum at that point and the second half wasn't as good as the first, but still a solid movie. Then last night Jeffro went to see Paul McCartney, so I rented a chick flick at home by myself, Catch and Release. For some reason I just love Jennifer Garner.

Today, besides the puppy watching, was kind of slow since it rained all day and my dog refused to go outside. A nice break for me . . . now I'm wondering how the weekend went by so quickly and why I have to go to work tomorrow when Jeffro has the day off . . .