June 25, 2012

Hello (goodbye) June

Oooops. Things have been (sorta kinda?) busy. But mainly good. Really, really good. Which is why I started neglecting writing. Anyway, June in no particular order:

  • Have been slowly progressing, thesis-wise.
  • Moved
  • Started gardening (well, maintaining someone else's garden---but still)
  • Built a keggerator with Tommy
  • Saw a lot of good friends
  • Hosted our first big party
  • Bike commuting a lot further than I'm used to
  • Summer shape up
  • Mountain biking
  • Cooking lots
  • Salt Lake City Arts Festival
  • Under African Skies at Red Butte Garden
  • Lots and lots of wedding stuff
And now, with just a few days left, Tommy and I are off to do some field work! Gahhhhh I can't believe summer's halfway done!

Gots to get back to work! See you later alligator!

May 25, 2012

Awwww shit

So, I'm sitting at a coffee shop. And it's pretty pretentious as far as coffee shops go. But it's close to my house and it's fairly priced, and there's a good nook for people like me who just want to work on their computer and not be in the center of all the action. So I came here. (Side note, I was planning on working on my thesis, but that kinda went through the roof..so I wrote thank you notes instead. That counts for something, though, right?)

Anyway, the first hour or so was kind of a bust since their internet was out. But then the internet turned back on, but then I ran out of coffee. So I internetted for a while, debating if I should buy something else--I didn't really want more coffee since I'm already wired, and I don't really want food since I'm trying to eat healthy. Well, the internet sucked me in, and I'm still holding on to the hope that maybe I'll get some real work done. So I went and got a refill. It's cheap enough. Plus I gave a dollar tip, soooo....

So I'm sitting here waiting for my coffee to cool down, and some guy walks out of the kitchen and stomps down to the end of the row. And sitting at the end of the row is a girl with two empty iced-something cups (y'know, the plastic clear ones?) and a buttload of books and a laptop. And he said, "Are you going to buy anything? Because you've been sitting here for a few hours and I gave you that free water when you first came in and you haven't bought anything else." And she was like, "yeah yeah." And he was like, "seriously, you're sitting here and I need you to help me pay my rent. You can't just sit here with free water." And he was really really indignant about it. And she reassured him again that she would buy something, and he stomped back into the kitchen. She hasn't gotten up to buy anything again.

I'm kinda nervous that he's going to blow his shit if he comes back out here. He was already on the verge of yelling as it was.

But the whole episode was just kinda silly. I mean, on the one hand, I totally understand why he would do that to her. I mean, just because they give out internet for free, doesn't mean that the coffee shop gets it for free. This isn't a public library. And there's definitely an unspoken rule about buying at least something per hour that you're here.

But on the other hand, she's not hurting anyone. She's sitting in the very corner, all by herself quietly working away. I can understand if she were homeless and yelling and stinking up the place. Or if she did this all the time. Or if there were people waiting for tables. But none of those things are true. So he just made a big deal to make a big deal. He came off as someone on a pretty big power trip.

Oh well, not my coffee shop. And I'm not really taking any sides. Believe me, when I worked at a coffee shop I would have loved to do that to people. It's just..interesting, to see my fellow humans interacting. And that's why I like coffee shops. Even if it means I'm not going to get any work done.

May 9, 2012

And then this happened

"I have to tell you that over the course of several years as I have talked to friends and family and neighbors when I think about members of my own staff who are in incredibly committed monogamous relationships, same-sex relationships, who are raising kids together, when I think about those soldiers or airmen or marines or sailors who are out there fighting on my behalf and yet feel constrained, even now that Don't Ask Don't Tell is gone, because they are not able to commit themselves in a marriage, at a certain point I’ve just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get married."
                                       --President Obama, May 9, 2012

It's about damn time, but I'll take it.

Read this article for more info

Sad day for the good fight (yesterday)

Thanks, North Carolina, for again bringing into the spotlight the hate and bigotry contained in this country.

How can you possibly think that denying two people who love each other the right to marry is ok and fair and Christian? HOW?

I am so sad for the LGBT folks living there. I am so sad for this country. I am so sad that I get to marry when so many of my friends cannot.  Yesterday (and today) was a sad, sad, day.

May 1, 2012

Another workout post OMG

Guess what I did today? Guess what I've been doing for a while now and just not telling you about?

Yeah I suck at being a blogger. Ooops.

Soooo I'll just do this week.

Sunday: nothing. But I did go clothes shopping, that counts right?
Ate oatmeal with 1% milk, brown sugar, peanut butter and a handful of granola plus English Breakfast tea with milk and honey for brunch.
Chips and salsa for snack.
Quinoa salad for dinner (modified from this recipe. BTW. I eat this like twice a week it's so amazing)

Monday: Ran 3 miles in the morning.
Ate apple jacks with 2% milk plus an Americano with 1/2 and1/2 for breakfast.
Leftover quinoa salad for lunch
Veggie chicken nuggets and french fries and a beer for dinner. I know. Crickets. I'm bad but TOMMY MADE ME

Tuesday: Ate oatmeal with 1% milk, and a tablespoon each natural peanut butter and brown sugar plus English Breakfast tea with 1% milk and honey.
Biked to school.
Ceasar salad with tofu for lunch plus a diet coke.
And the following workout:
  • Ran ten minutes around the track (~1 mile)
  • Workout one from the Fitnessista, modified so that the cardio blasts were two minutes instead of one.
    • Also modified the "ab burner" to:
      • 2 x 25 regular situps
      • 3 x 1 min planks
      • 2 x 50 bicycle crunches
      • 2 x 25 circle crunches
      • 2 x 50 side-to-sides
  • Two more minutes of running
  • Looooooooong stretch
I feel great.

Now I just need to get the energy to bike home....ughhhh.

I'll try to update more frequently. As per the Fitnessista's Summer Shape Up, tomorrow is yoga...we'll see if I can fit that in. My gym is doing free classes this week so I don't really have an excuse not to.


Not as in "Hey you guys". As in every single song by Of Monsters and Men. Just bought their album. The single "Little Talks" has been stuck in my head for days and days. It's fabulous. And now I'm listening to the first song on the album My Head is an Animal ("Dirty Paws") and it too has a bunch of HEYs keeping time. Must be an Icelandic thing.

But oh gosh they are so good. I love the sound of two lead singers, one male and one female with a full ensemble to back them up. It is so satisfying. I've been listening to too much pop music I think.

ANYWAY. Looks like I'm going to be here for another semester. They don't want me to defend until the fall. I personally think it's for their own selfish reasons, but they are saying they're worried I won't get done in time. Oh well. I do have another TA position lined up. So that's good.

Just writing now. The good news that came from my meeting is that all my results are valid. I was wrong. Whoops. And all I have to do is write em up.

Oh, and happy May. I freaking love spring. But it's not like I've never ever mentioned that.

Also, this.

April 22, 2012

Another Sunday at school...

Welp, here I am. I've been working foooooooor 15 days straight now. WOW. Granted, a few of those days were spent grading at home, and at least one of them was spent cleaning my parents' house. But I haven't had a day off in soooooooo long.

I have a huge presentation tomorrow. It's like, soooo big you guys. It's my results meeting. This is when my committee gets their first chance of ripping me a new arse hole. And I have to take it. And they may even tell me my results are worthless (which, the more I practice this presentation, the more I think they might be). And then what will I do? Also, there's a chance that one committee member won't let me defend in June anyway. Not because of worthless results (though, like I said, there's a chance), but because she may or may not be here. And she won't give me an answer. And I really need to know. Ughhh.

So I've been at school trying to get this presentation done, and grading done, so on Monday I can have some semblance of a "weekend". Though it really won't be a weekend. It will be more of a take-some-time-for yourself-because-you-haven't-in FIFTEEN-DAYS afternoon. And that will feel really nice. I'm going to work out (because I haven't in a week...so much for routine...), I'm going to register for more stuff, and I'll probably spring clean and watch bad tv and go to bed early. YAY I can't wait for this meeting to be over!

And then, after Monday, it's back to the grindstone. Full freaking force people. (But I do hope I'll find time to workout). See, if I want to defend in June, which is like, two months away, I need to write my entire thesis. But see, I'm going to HAWAII in a few weeks. And sure, I'll bring my laptop, but what good is that really going to do, really? Yeah......

Also, for the record, I'm not complaining. I see a light at the end of the tunnel! For the first time! And yeah, it's only a pin prick, and sometimes it seems to flicker, and it definitely does not seem to be getting any bigger, but it's there. And that's great. I'm really excited for the summer. Lots of great things ahead.

April 6, 2012

A workout post!

Hi all and HAPPY FRIDAY!

I've been working my tail off this week and it feels so good. So I decided to take an hour long lunch break and catch up on the ol' blog. Today I'm going to tackle something I talk about often, but never really go into detail about: exercising!

I have bitched and moaned about losing weight, I have attempted to train for a marathon, and now I'm back on the work out wagon, getting ready for my Hawaiian vacation.

So, the thing is here people, I'm not actually fat. I'm really short though, so any extra ANYTHING shows up, and it shows up quickly. Generally around my stomach area, but also on my chin (super depressing) and my boobs. But if I lose three or five pounds, it goes away very quickly. I guess I'm lucky that way.

So how do I do this? My number one tool, hands down, is Livestrong.com. It's free to sign up, so no one has any excuse not to. Obviously, it's not fool proof, but I'm guessing it's pretty accurate. Here's how it works: you enter your height, weight, gender and age as well as your daily activity level (most of us are sedentary because we sit for our jobs, but if you're a waitress or a full-time nanny you might be classified under light activity. You should not take into account how much you work out when you do fill out this portion). Next you decide how much weight you want to lose (if any) and how fast (*note, I am not a doctor, please check with yours to make sure this is right for you). Livestrong then calculates how many net calories you need per day. Mine is an even 1400 to lose a pound a week. After that, it's really easy! They have a very very easy to use calorie tracker, with nearly any food you could imagine in their database. If they don't have it, then add it! You can also add your own recipes and it will calculate the nutritional value per serving. I find the easiest way to remember to track food is to just have the link open all day on my computer.

You can also track your "fitness" or your work out routines. Again, this is not guaranteed accurate. Most people recommend wearing a heart monitor to get better results, but since I don't need to lose a ton of weight, and I'm pretty healthy anyway, I feel like as long as I'm in the ballpark, it's good enough. Just like entering recipes, you can enter in your runs/walks/bikes on google maps, as well as how long it took for you to do said activity, and easily track it the next time. Easy peasy. I especially like this tool.

I've played with calorie counting before, and honestly, it never really lasts that long for me (especially once I get into a good routine), but this is the best site for it, in my opinion. It's very easy to use, and it's easy to look at. I like watching my bar go up and down each day, and you can compare across days to see what your eating habits are like. I also like the website because there are great user forums to help you get inspired to try a long run, or do a weight circuit or something.  (*note number two: I am not affiliated with Livestrong, nor did they ask me to write this post. I'm just sharing my own personal experience).

My second favorite tool, is actually more than one thing--it's the blogs I read. Two, specifically. Iowagirleats and the Fitnessista (I can't pronounce it either). Maybe these specific ones are not right for you, but what I like about fitness/eating blogs is that they are good inspiration for healthy foods and lifestyles. Both of them post recipes and workouts on a regular basis, which helps bring change into my routine (the Fitnessista has the best line: "change creates change". So. Effing. True.). Whether or not these are right for you, I suggest subscribing to something similar, if only for the reminder to stay on track.

My third favorite tool might not actually be in your tool box, but it's my addictive personality. Ha. When I'm not in a good workout routine, I never ever ever want to make that first trip to the gym. But as soon as I get one or two workouts in in a week, I can't stop. It takes something huge (for me, it was getting sick at the beginning of this semester). Now that I've been running on a regular basis, I don't want to stop. I luuuuuuurrrrve that feeling. It's super addicting to me. Hopefully it will be for you too (but seriously, give it some time. Because believe me, I know all about that "I'd rather eat my own feces than exert myself" feeling.)

Phew! This is turning into quite the entry. Now that I've given you my tools, I'll let you know what I'm focusing on right now. As I said earlier, I'm getting ready to go to Hawaii. In a bathing suit. Ugh. But looking farther into the future, I have a wedding to star in. So overall, I just want to look goooood, y'know? I'm at a fairly healthy weight (could stand to lose about three pounds. Go ahead and eye roll, but it's true), but I'm flabby as all shit. My stomach especially. And did I mention I'm heading to Hawaii? And that I have a thesis to write (read: I sit on my ass all day long)? So I'm trying to fit in 4 to 5 days of exercise per week, and mix it up each time. Three days a week I get in at least 30 minutes of cardio (either running or spinning), followed by an abs workout and either an arms or legs workout. Once a week I go hiking with the class I TA for, and once a weekend I go hiking/skiing/biking with Tommy. I also try to walk to and from school/grocery store when possible. I'm hoping that this variety will slim me down and tone me up for a smokin' (HA!) beach bod in a few weeks. At least it can't hurt. Also, the routine is key. Keykeykey. Because I WILL have a great body for my wedding. Hands fucking down. And if I can stay in this routine It'll be easy as pie.

I am also working on eating less (Livestrong). Which is hard. I can drink all my day's calories in one night out to the bar. Ooops. That's actually the hardest part. No, I'm not an alcoholic, but one beer or glass of wine is over 100 calories. And who has one drink anyway? Let's get serious. So yeah, I'm not perfect, but I'm trying. I'm also trying to just eat healthier, which again isn't that easy because I love bad food. But I haven't had french fries in a week! Yay!

In an effort to help myself and help you, I'm going to try to blog more about my specific work outs and what I eat. I was going to do it today, but the sun came out and it's Friday afternoon. So I'm out of here. Have a great weekend!

April 1, 2012

Also, this

A status update I made March 1 2011, perfectly sums up my sentiments in the previous post:

"HAPPY MARCH EVERYONE! Goodbye, goodbye winter. Hello to early sunrises and epic sunsets. Hello to spring flowers, less snow, more sun. Take off your down jackets, throw off your boots and effing rejoice! For March is the second best month next to Aprilmayjune!!!!!!!!! YAY SPRING IS JUST AROUND THE CORNER!!"

**Apparently my favorite month is Aprilmayjune. I forgot the June part haha. 


Well, I am pretty close to getting four posts in March. Oh well! Happy April anyway!

March was a great month, but it absolutely flew by. I mainly worked my tail off on my thesis, aaaaaand that's about it. Seriously, it seems that it's all that I've done. But I'm proud of myself for working so hard, even though it still seems like it's never going to end. I've already pushed back the date of my defense to "sometime in June", but that depends on my committee's individual schedules. And they're not giving me much information so far. Hmmmm...let the nagging begin!

April 1 not only designates the end of March, but the end of the first quarter of the year. So, I thought I'd re-examine my resolutions and see what I've done, and what I need to do!

  • Lost more weight: Ha. and HA. That's a laugh. I was doing so well during the fall because of all that marathon training, and then spring semester started up and I'm lucky if I work out once a week. And I really need to work out. I'm going to Hawaii in about a month and I must be beach ready by then. I hope to make it to the gym ~3 times a week from now on. Friday afternoons are spent hiking with my class, and Tommy and I try to do something (hike/bike/run) at least once a weekend. So if I can make it to the gym three times a week on top of those other two things, I should be in good shape (both literally and figuratively). 
  • Write this ish at least once a week: It's not been tooooo bad. Last month was a little slow. And when I did post it was short. But it's better than nothing! I think I can keep that up for another three months.
  • Cook more: I've been killing the shit out of this one. Unfortunately I never post about it, so you'll just have to take my word for it, but it's true! I've really started to become a better cook too! I just cannot wait until we have our own kitchen with our own nice things. It's really hard to plan for the week because we're constantly switching houses. But oh well. I'm still keeping on top of it and it's been fun.
Other than that, like I said things are going great. It's been sooooo nice out. Tommy and I went on our first long bike ride last weekend, and yesterday we took the dog up Millcreek Canyon for a hike. It's snowing right now, unfortunately, but that's why I'm at school! Getting stuff done!

Happy April to you all (yes, I know I already said that, but April 1 ALSO marks the beginning of my favorite season: Aprilmay. It's that time of year when the weather is absolutely perf. School is finishing up [though, I guess not really for me anymore since I'm no longer taking classes....]. Skies are blue. Birds are chirping. I just love Aprilmay!!!!!)

March 28, 2012

I haven't bought an album in a long time. I just did about 30 minutess ago. And it feels. so. good. I used to be really "in" to music, yknow? I used to be one of those people who wouldn't shut up about my favorite bands and I would always have music playing and I would download as many live shows of the Grateful Dead that I possibly could. (I told you I was one of those people).

And then there was a fundamental shift. I moved to Boston. And the people that I hung out with weren't connected to me through music (unlike my L&C friends) (also, that's not entirely true, but I don't really want to get into my relationship with that person). I was connected to those Boston people on an entirely different level. And in most ways, it was good, better even than my music-related friends. We connected through activities and academic interests. We didn't spend hours trying to prove who was more of a fan.

On top of that, I lived in BOSTON. I no longer listened to my ipod when I walked because I wanted to be able to hear what was around me. I wanted to be apart of my surroundings, not removed from them. And it that's not because I'm some safety conscience  prude (though arguments can be made, I guess), it's because I honestly believe that it's more interesting to hear what the crazy guys on the bus have to say, what the ditzy girls walking through campus have to moan about (like, seriously?). I saw more when I wasn't listening to music. I looked around and noticed the architecture, hole-in-the-wall restaurants, flowers.

Pretty soon I only listened to music when I worked out. That mentality stayed with me through my move to Utah. Sure, I listen to Pandora when I'm writing (Mozart, mostly soooooo). And yes the ipod does get frequent use at parties and on road trips, but mostly not. I listen to NPR when running errands, or nothing if there is someone in the car with me. So now I'm that person. Ugh. Not much better huh?

Which brings me back to today. My favorite band ever (besides the Dead...), Yonder Mountain String Band is coming to Utah in a few weeks, so to prepare for their show I decided to look up their latest tunes. What a fan I am, they put out a new album almost three years ago THAT I'VE NEVER EVEN HEARD OF. So I bought it, and I put it on. And it's so good. I've been sitting with my back to the door, my chin resting on my Nalgene, my eyes closed, and my fingers tapping. I haven't gotten any work done. Ooops. So worth it.

I'm sorry that I haven't been around much, music world, but I promise I'll frequent you more often. I forgot how much fun I have.

My favorite track, so far

March 15, 2012

Sometimes, I'm proud to be a Utahn...

Today marks the fourth in a series of a controversial Doonesbury storyline. While my local paper, the Salt Lake Tribune chose to run the first three, it pointedly left today's out (apparently) because of the term "rape".

However, our esteemed political cartoonist, Pat Bagley included it anyway:


I hope he wins a bunch of awards. This man is awesome. Hats off to you, sir.

On a side note, not only does he have Utah politics down to a T..but last year he came to the annual Association of Women Geologists meeting. He was the only live auction "item"--he would draw a cartoon of the highest bidder. All proceeds went to women studying the geosciences.

Just awesome.

March 8, 2012

So much for writing more...

Thesis is kicking into full gear people!

I have started coming in at 8 or earlier and staying until 5 or 6 (depending on whether I go to the gym...unfortunately I don't go very often). The best part is, I'm getting stuff done.

Wow, with wedding and thesis and cooking every night and walking to school (I haven't driven my car here in weeks!), it's all I can do to have a couple hours (or less) to unwind at the end of the day before catching some much needed zzzzz's.

Welp, have to get back to work, but for your viewing pleasure, here's what my life has been like the last week: 

February 23, 2012

Me Talk Pretty One Day, Reviewed

Welp, I just finished reading Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris...

It was...ok.

If you're at all familiar with Sedaris' other works then you'll recognize and be familiar with the short essay format that is often autobiographical. The book has two parts, the first being centered on his early life, while the second part was about his time in Paris. Most (but not all) of the stories were loosely related to language and speaking. Sedaris is known for being extremely funny, but I found his humor to get a little old in this book.

But I'll start with what I liked. I liked that it was a collection of short essays. Don't get me wrong, I love novels, but it was nice to open the book and close it 10 minutes later with a feeling of accomplishment and finality. Also, many of his stories are really funny. I can honestly say I laughed aloud a few times.

However, the majority of his work is extremely self-deprecating. And I found that it got old. While some of it is funny, other parts went on and on about his drug abuse or his inability to learn French. I felt bad for him, especially if I read more than one story in a row. It's not that his life is a bad one (especially now), it just became painfully obvious that he was picking out these tiny weird parts and expanding on them...and it was kind of hard to read after a while. At least for me. If something is going to be funny, I just want it to be funny. Maybe at the expense of someone else, but not all the time. I really don't need to hear about you dropping out of four art programs because you sucked so bad and didn't realize it. It got to the point where multiple people saw I was reading it and raved about it... and I couldn't understand why...

And now I kind of feel like a bitch for the above paragraph, but honestly, it left a bad taste in mouth after a while.

So in the end, I would recommend this book if you're just looking for something light and easy to read every once in a while. If you're going to be sitting on a beach next weekend and want to plop down with some reading material that will hold you over for a few hours, then find something different.

February 9, 2012

On geology

Ok so I consumed caffeine this morning for the first time in a long time, and I am WIRED. I already finished grading papers, did one run-through of my presentation, and have read a zillion articles and blogs, all in 2 1/2 hours. That's a record for me [that's also why I weaned myself off of caffeine--now when I need  it, it really REALLY works]. And right now I just feel like I need to write. It's a weird feeling, but if I don't I might EXPLODE!!!!!!!!

Anyway, I was in the structure lab this morning and something caught my eye. It was a hand-written note on the white board by one of the undergrads who also uses the lab. It said:

I love rocks, chocolate and Katie

That's it. But reading it brought back some strong (albeit weird) emotions. Mostly from my undergrad. When I really really loved geology. Like, I loved it a lot. I loved learning about it, I loved telling people about it, I loved field trips, I loved fantasizing about grad school and my life as a Geo professor. I just loved it. I loved how it made sense. How it combined my love for the outdoors with my desire to learn. I loved that it encompassed everything from volcanoes to landslides to glaciers to diamonds. I just found it so loveable.

But reading that thing on the board reminded me that I no longer have that passion. And before you stop reading because you think this is going to digress into a "woe is me, I should have done something different, my life sucks and I'm only in my twenties, I'll never find a career" don't. Because it won't. Don't get me wrong I have those thoughts all the time, but there's still a glimmer of hope.  And sometimes I need to remind myself of that.

Like when I go out into the field with the class I TA for. I love showing those kids how to map and I love learning more about the Wasatch Mountains. Those four hours on a Friday are some of my best all week.

Or when I'm making maps with Ron. Granted, it just started, but yesterday I had so. much. fun. doing it. Really!

Or when I'm hanging out with professionals that have cool jobs. It reminds me that there will be something out there for me that doesn't revolve around oil or academia.

But a lot of times I forget about that glimmer, and I get down on myself and I wonder what happened? What happened to the passion and the desire to learn as much as I could? I come to school each day now because I have to, not because I want to. I get all sorts of anxiety thinking about a future career. I ask myself pointless questions such as why I didn't become a doctor or a journalist?

But I guess I just need to remember those glimmers. They're there. And I still love geology. It's just not as strong or in my face as it was when I was an undergrad. I know this is sort of a pointless post, but I just needed to air it out. That's how I get through things. So, sorry if you feel like you've wasted your time. I just re-read it and realized I solved my own problem, but I guess that's why I write, you know? It's my own form of therapy.

February 3, 2012

That is all.

February 2, 2012

Now, let me tell you how to think

I don't often get political on here, but I really should. I have quite strong opinions and I refrain from posting them on the 'book because there are people I am friends with that I don't want to offend. I often feel like I am being a coward because these are things I feel strongly about, but apparently not strongly enough because I don't get the word out.

But here? Here I can do and say whatever I damn well please. This is because I have never told anyone to come and read this blog. And if you are reading it right now, it's because you came here on your own free will. So if liberal tenancies make you squirm you should probably leave now. Just sayin...

Let's start with the bad news. Mostly because it's not that bad after all! Susan G. Komen for the Cure (you know, the Pepto pink everything...?) just announced they're cutting their funding for Planned Parenthood. At first, I was devastated. I mean, it frustrates me to no end that people continue to think that Planned Parenthood is all about abortions, when in fact most of their services are not abortion-related at all, just affordable health care for women and men.

So to have a bunch of funding taken away because they happen to provide abortions didn't seem right to me (well, it still doesn't but read further and you'll see why I'm "ok" with it). Especially because the Cure's money went to breast cancer screenings and prevention. Nothing to do with abortion at all. Needless to say, I was pissed. But then I read this article from my favorite lesbian shitasses. In summary, it talks about how the Cure is mostly run by right-wing, Bush-supporting, tea-partying nut bags people. Therefore, I really had to ask myself why they just didn't do it sooner? Also, since this sparked such outrage, the donations to Planned Parenthood have sky rocketed and they are being cast in the light of the victim right now, which is great. Because they're not a bad organization at all. And hopefully people who thought that PP was all about abortions will learn something new with all this media attention. So there's that.

In GREAT news, Washington is quickly becoming the newest state to legalize same-sex marriage! Yeeeeeehaaawwwwww. Congrats, Washington, for standing up for what is right! I'm not going to go into too much here because I honestly could go on and on and on and on and on and on and on about gay rights issues (especially living in such a homophobic state as Utah) but I won't. I'm just so glad to see our country making progress in the right direction! Hopefully when Obama gets elected again next fall, he'll just come out and say he's for same sex marriage (pun intended).

And lastly I am going to tell you where to eat next. If you live in Salt Lake City that is. Last night my friend Nate introduced me to one of the best Indian/Nepali restaurants I have been to in a while. Kathmandu located on seventh east and second south (in the same parking lot as Sunflower Market). Now, I guess their other location has been opened for some time, but this was my first time eating at either location and it was fabulous. The service was excellent--they brought us some free appetizers, were very knowledgeable about the menu, joked around with us some but not too much and were more than happy to split the check. (I always take servers' attitudes into account on this one because as someone who had to split checks, it's honestly not that hard. Don't let anyone ANYONE tell you otherwise, they're trying to make you feel bad for them so that you'll give them a bigger tip. I give a bigger tip if they don't complain--that being said, I try to tell the server right off if possible, but sometimes I just forget.) The food was pretty good. I can't say it was hands down the best Indian food I've ever had, but there isn't a place in Salt Lake that's better than it to my knowledge. I can't emphasize enough though, it's not that it's bad, it's really really good, I just wasn't blown away. I had the Malai Kofta (duh) and Tommy had the Mattar Mushroom (the other two we were with had meat dishes, so I can't really speak for them). Mmmmmmmmmm sooo good. The vegetable balls in mine were sweeter than I'm used to, but I was ok with it. Next to Tommy's salty mushroom dish, they made a good pair. Both of us asked for "medium" spice levels (they have mild, mild plus, medium, medium plus, hot and Kathmandu hot) but easily could have gone spicier. Our server even told us at the end that for cream-based dishes--like ours--you really should go up to a medium plus or a hot to taste the heat. Best part is that it is cheap. Ok, it's slightly (like one or two dollars) more than other southeastern vegetarian fare in the city, but each entree comes with rice and naan. And they bring you extra rice free of charge if you run out (unlike that STUPID place in Chicago that not only charged for rice and naan, but charged again for extra rice!!!!!). The quality of food and service, combined with the price and location makes it hands down my new favorite Indian spot in the valley. Check it out yo!

Anyway, done with the rants. Whew, that feels good. Now I can go back to good ol FB and pretend I don't have opinions. Wish me luck!

January 31, 2012

A list of sorts

There is nothing in particular I want to write about today, but I still want to write. Why? Because it's the end of the month and to get four posts in in one month is pretty good for me. Also, I have nothing to do (well, that's a lie, I have about one hour's worth of things to do). Also, there are things that I'm doing (and not doing) in my life that I feel need attention.

  • I am not going to write a review of The Hunger Games as previously promised. If you haven't read it already you're an idiot. And if you have read it already--ohmygod did you hate the ending as much as I did?!?!?!?!?!? And are you going to the midnight showing of the movie???!?!?!?
  • I am no longer training for the half marathon. I know. Quitters suck. I was getting to the seven mile point and two things happened. One, I was extremely bored. Tommy stopped running with me and I couldn't do an hour and half alone so I could only do it on my parents' treadmill while watching Mad Men. Two, after those long runs I would be sore for the ENTIRE week. I never recovered. And then I would have to do it again. The way I see it, quitting was probably for the best. I HATE failing at something. And there was no way I was going to be able to run that thing alone. There was no sense in beating myself up about it. So the only logical thing to do was quit. Maybe next year...
  • On the wedding front: we've gotten the tux's--off-white dinner jackets by RL paired with black pants--for a steal. Let me tell you. A local company, Tuxedo Junction had a one week offer: for $70 you could get any tux in the store. We jumped on it. We didn't have to get the tux's right then, we just had to pay up front and we'll get them in August. Wheeeeee! 

This is kind of a stupid picture, but whatevs. Source

  • Also on the wedding front: we almost have a florist! I say almost because I'm pretty sure we're going to make the decision today. We've spoken to a couple of vendors, and both really understood my "vision" (hahahahahahaha my "vision" is not too fancy, no roses, no red, casual, wildflowers but absolutely NO rustic elements--mason jars, etc. This isn't Little House on the Prairie people). The one we picked is mostly based on price. They came in about $500 below the other, and had a better selection of flowers--not too shabby.
  • Last night I made this version of French Onion Soup. It was...ok. It was easy to make (albeit time consuming) and it tasted fine, it was just a bit vinegar-y to me. I like my FOS to be a bit more savory. But if you like vinegar and not a lot of hassle, this soup's for you!
  • I haven't walked to school at all this week because I suck. Sorry, earth.
And that's it! I guess for now. I really should do that bit o work I do have so I can just go home. Tommy's really sick, and I think I'm starting to get it. My nose is runny and itchy as hach ee double hocky sticks and my throat is getting a tickle. I downed some vitamin C but I've also been hanging with Tommy for about 65 of the last 72 hours....whoops!

January 24, 2012

A Fierce Green Fire

Last night Tommy and I went up to Park City to watch the world premier of A Fierce Green Fire at the Sundance Film Festival.

It was sooooooo fracking good! (geology joke there HA).

The movie was marketed as a documentary about the environmental movement. It spanned five "acts", each with a different theme like conservation, pollution, etc. It was kind of long, but it truly was amazing. I am an environmentalist. I'd love to save the planet, but since I didn't study it in school, I really don't know much about the history of the "movement". This film not only taught me a lot, but since it focused on individuals standing up for the planet, it really got me excited to do my part. The people this film focused on are heroes.

I'm not going to go into too much more of a review because I'm just not that good at that kind of thing, but you can watch all five acts yourself and learn more about the movie on this website.

What I will talk about a little bit are the reactions I had to it.

As I stated earlier, this documentary really inspired me to make a change. Now, I don't have the time (or the focus, let's get serious people) to start my own campaign, but one of the most important lessons this film taught me was that it takes an individual to start a movement, but it takes many people to make it happen.

The first thing I want to do is find one or two organizations that are crusading for the environment and help them out. There are a few I have in mind--350.org, the Sierra Club, Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance--but I still want to research them, and others and really commit. Commit time, money and service. And since I put it on the internet, it must be true!

The second thing I want to do is live more green-ly. I am going to try to make more of an effort to walk to school and the grocery store, and buy local when possible, and buy American when there are no local options. The walking, I'm sure, makes sense to most of you, but the reason why I want to buy local is for a few reasons. The first is because the closer the source, the less energy it takes to get to the store. The second is because America has environmental regulations in place--though admittedly not great--while places like China definitely do not. Therefore, the goods I buy from this country were probably made with more environmentally friendly materials and practices. The third is less environmental, but still a good reason: I just want to help our economy and my fellow Utahards/Americans.

The third thing I want to do can't really happen until I have a real job that pays real money, but I want to have a garden and use renewable energy when we finally get a home.

Since this is a blog, and I resolved to write more, I'll try to keep yall updated on how this green project goes.

(and while we're talking about that sort of stuff, I'll try to write more about the food I'm cooking--I cooked so much last week!--and the books I'm reading, and the workouts I'm doing. Really, I'll try....)

January 17, 2012

I'm here, life is great.

To expand on that idea: I just had probably the best weekend in Torrey that I have had in a long time, if not ever. The best. Hands down. A few people from the department came down, and while I wished I could have invited everyone, I couldn't. And the people that came were just great. They helped out when things needed to get done, they were enthusiastic about the plans for the day, and the conversation never stopped.

The weather was fucking gorgeous. Yes. Fucking gorgeous. We were in tee shirts and pants most hikes (IN JANUARY!!!!) because the sun was out and the sky was blue.

The dogs were amazing. Bandit is always amazing. Jude, Pat's new dog, is just as amazing. And they got along so. well.

My parents made us great dinner and kept the wine flowing. It was just great. So great. I can't get over how great this weekend was.

And while today wasn't the most productive day of my life, I still got stuff done. And the sky is cloudless and I have an amazing view of the mountains.

And we're all going to a Jazz game tonight which is always a rowdy good time.

And it's supposed to dump  this week, which means we'll actually get some skiing in.

Life is soooooo great right now.

January 6, 2012

New Years Resolutions

Oh man, has it really been an entire year since I  wrote this?? Cray cray.

Last year I resolved to really and truly budget myself. It totally worked. Once I figured out a budget I was able to save enough to not work at all in the summer, and since I started making money again after the summer was over, I continued with the same budget, and I will definitely have plenty to play with next summer!

I also resolved to lose weight. Well, that's kind of funny. I totally did this too. And again, I've kept it off. Although recently I've been feeling a bit above normal, but I'm going to blame the holidays. What's funny about it is actually not that funny but really really annoying. I got weighed today at the doctor's office and I'm a robust uhm, well, let's just say that the scale at school is about five pounds off. FIVE WHOLE POUNDS. That's too many pounds in my opinion. So even though I've lost weight since last year, I'm really still kind of over weight sooooo.....

Finally I resolved to get a hobby. This is the one that didn't really work. Maybe exercising? I don't know. Luckily Tommy isn't sick of me yet. In fact he wants to spend the rest of his life with me! Mwhahahaahahahaha.

So onto this year's self promises.

  • Lose more weight. See above. I want to look smokin hot at the wedding. So after this marathon business I am going to tone up my arms and back (which, quite honestly they're not that bad so this shouldn't be too hard).
  • Write this ish at least once a week. I have really enjoyed this streak that I am on, so I'm going to try to make it last. It's fun looking back and seeing what I have done.
  • Cook more. This is a hard one. Tommy and I have such busy schedules, not to mention that they're not really schedules at all! We come home at different times depending on how busy one or both of us is. We sleep at different houses on a whim. It's hard to plan out meals. And sometimes after getting home at 7:30 or 8 after a full day of school PLUS a four mile run, all I want to do is drive through the local 24 hour Mexican and call it a night. But no more! I really love cooking. And I really love the results. I wish I could give myself a number (see second resolution), but I just know everything is too random right now, so I can't.

Well, I think I've wasted enough time for the day and I can finally email my boss and tell him I'm leaving! (he's at a retreat anyway...I'm not a bad employee! [It's winter vacation, I don't even have to be here {stop with the judgy eyes!!!!!}])