Friday, April 26, 2013

Stuff I'm Enthusiastic About

For a brief period of time, I wrote a little series of posts called "Gamechangers," all about stuff I just, like, like. Lately, I've been liking a lot of stuff that I want to tell you about, so I'm bring that ish back, but I'm just going to call it "Stuff I'm Enthusiastic About," because I think that sums up the gist of it. Readyyyy? Go!

Goin' to London: I took a week off at the end of June because I essentially forgot to take vacation time this year, & if I don't use my paid vacation days by the end of the fiscal year (June), I lose them. It's sort of like being forced to take time off! I'd originally planned to do a staycation - sleep in, run errands, watch a lot of Ellen - but so many of my friends are globe-trotting right now, & I've got a titch of the green monster, so I started thinking I should try to get some travel in myself. My little cousin is living in London for 18 months, so I just booked a flight to visit her! More on this to come, obviously.

Drinkin' wine: While I was in Austin for SXSW in early March, a fellow attendee gave me a $60 voucher for NakedWines.com. I was skeptical - because ain't no such thing as a free liquid lunch - but I was pleased to find that A) it was totally legit, & B) NakedWines.com is awesome. That voucher (plus $13 from my own wallet) got me six bottles of wine, delivered to my doorstep within the week. Now, my wine rack is full for the first time in my life, & I'm looking forward to trying to become a wine-lover. (In case you're interested, I bought F. Stephen Millier Angels Reserve Viognier 2011, William Henry Riesling 2012, Rachis by Randy Hester Sauvignon Blanc 2012, & Da Da Da... Lodi Chardonnay 2011.) 

Gettin' trim: I started Weight Watchers in January, & while I'm not always perfect at sticking to it (um, there are Stella D'Oro Fudge Cookies in my car right now...), I've found it to be a really easy-to-understand, mostly-easy-to-follow program. I'm not losing as much or as quickly as I'd like because, um, cookies, but I am seeing a difference & feeling better overall - & also my jeans fit again & are even a little bit too big, which definitely falls into the category of "stuff that's awesome." And if I do lose copious amounts of weight, I promise not to become a Jennifer Hudson (which is to say that I won't abandon the traits & talents you know & love me for in favor of talking about being skinny all the time).

Makin' sandwiches: Nathan & I went to a street fair in downtown Red Bank two weekends ago, where I picked up some Raspberry Hot Pepper Jelly from Jacky's Jams and Jellies, made locally in Pine Beach, N.J. Fruit & heat? Gross. Except no. This jelly is the stuff culinary dreams are made of, & I created the World's Most Perfect Grilled Cheese™ (patent pending in my imagination) with it: three Babybel Light cheeses, sliced in half, with 2 tbsp. of jelly & a sprinkling of mozzarella cheese, pressed on multigrain panini bread in my George Foreman grill. I would eat this every day if I could do that & still end up looking like Jennifer Hudson. Instead, it'll be my new favorite-but-infrequent comfort food.

Eatin' cheese: I recently won a giveaway on my friend Suki's blog Super Duper Fantastic, & my haul arrived in the mail today: five blocks of fancy Sartori cheese! Basically, I have never been happier or more excited in my whole life, which is saying a lot, because it arrived on a less-than-stellar day. For lunch this afternoon, I had one serving of their Rosemary & Olive Oil Asiago cheese on Saltines with a side of carrots & yogurt, & then I pretty much died & went to Wisconsin (in which Wisconsin is heaven because, you know, that's where this cheese comes from). Seriously, I may never buy another kind of cheese ever again for as long as I live. Wonder what kinds of gourmet grilled cheese I can invent next?

So tell me: What are you enthusiastic about right now?

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