Stella Marie Juarez


Thursday, October 30, 2008

My Drug

I love to shop. So much that sometimes I wonder if I am addicted. Shopping is my drug. If I feel bad or had a bad day, nothing makes me feel better than going and buying something. If I'm having a great day shopping just makes me feel even better.

Katie said to me earlier in the week that she really need some winter clothes. All she had to do was make that statement and I immediately set a date and time.

I love to help other people shop almost as much as I like to shop for myself. I love watching someone put something on that makes them feel pretty and see their face light up in the mirror. When I shop for people I just go down the aisles and throw everything I think might look good on them into the shopping cart. Usually they will say "Oh, Laura, that?". Trust me! It doesn't hurt to try things on and you have to have an imagination. Everything looks different on than it does on the hanger. Not to mention, the look of an outfit can change dramatically by what you choose for shoes and accessories.

We didn't have a ton of time last night because we had walked after work so we decided to stay close and go to Ross and Old Navy. I adore Ross. Some people think I'm crazy but if you have the time and can actually sort through all of the junk you can find some real gems for great prices. I wanted to go to Old Navy because I have a credit card there so I didn't need money in the bank to buy something!

I will not tell the exact amount spent last night but I will tell you it was very, very reasonable (cheap actually by my standards). Katie walked out with a new coat, scarf, a sweater tunic, three dresses, a pair of leggings, and a pair of tights - found, tried on and paid for all under an hour.

The sweater tunic and one of the dresses needed a long sleeve black shirt to go under them. That was the one thing we could not find at Ross so we headed over to Old Navy. Old Navy was having a big 50% off sale and I was excited about finding some great cheap items. As we were walking in I remembered the day about two months ago that I had cut up all of my credit cards in an attempt to curb my shopping addiction. Sadly, that meant I could by nothing. I got over it and went charging through the store looking for the needed long sleeve black shirt. Stuck in between some really ugly stuff I found it! It was perfect. Just what we were looking for and the right size. It was in the 50% off section but it did not have a sale tag on it so we started looking around the store to see if we could find where it came from. We went around the entire store only to realize this was the very last of these shirts and in fact the ONLY plain long sleeve black shirt in the entire store! I told Katie it was destiny! To top it off when we got to the register it was $5 less than we thought. This was Katie's night!

It turned out to be my night as well. Not only did I have a great time with Katie but I also found the one thing I said I actually needed - a pair of flat black boots (my feet have been killing me walking to work every day in my heels). I bought them at Ross for $12.99 - a steal! And, the fact that my credit card was cut up saved me the $89.00 I really wanted to spend on a coat at Old Navy.

I'm wearing my new boots today and every time I look at them it makes me smile. I guess the high hasn't worn off yet.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Spongebob and Chicken Fingers

Mary had to do final measurements for boot camp last night and asked me to watch Dominic and Zoe after work. How could I resist this face?

It had been a while since I had seen them in daylight! I can't believe how quickly they are growing up.

We talked,

we played,

played some more,

(look at that concentration!)

ate dinner,

watched TV,

and took a bath.

Ok, no pictures of the bath, gotta keep the hands on the baby. But she was so funny in the bath and she was an angel when it was time to wash her hair. What a great baby.

I can't believe how much Dominic is talking. He even responds to the television shows, "can you say monkey?" "MONKEY!". It is so cute.

I left Mary's and ran to CVS for a firelog, milk and a bottle of wine. I got to the register and asked the guy if they had any firelogs. He looked very confused and finally said "what is a firelog?". I said "you know, a log that you put in your fireplace?" He didn't get it. He had to call a manager over. I'm not making this up. So Dominic if you want to start working now, I'm pretty sure you could get a job at CVS!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Child Abuse

Sarah Palin Cabbage Patch Doll. Just in time for Christmas!
I just threw up in my mouth.

Weekend Wrap-Up - Happy Birthday Esa!

This weekend went by way too fast!

Friday night we went to the Jackson Browne concert (do not be confused it was Jackson Browne not James Brown) with Jeannie and Amy. I didn't know any of the music but we had a good time anyway. His music was good, back up singers were great but the bar was too far away! We left the concert and were all hungry so we had a late dinner at The Grille with WAY too many french fries.

Saturday Tavi met me, Martin, Katie, Jeannie and Amy for lunch at Jackson's. She had just finished taking the ACT and had time for lunch and a nap before her performance at ASFA. It was good to see her even though she was sorta brain dead from numerous hours of testing. Martin and Tavi headed home for a nap and the rest of us stayed behind to see if we could drink every bottle of champagne Jackson's had - I'm not sure if we succeeded but we had to have come close!

We then drove out to Clay to pick up Marisa to take her to dinner for her birthday. 11! I can't believe it.

We did not know until Saturday morning that we would be picking her up so we threw together a last minute birthday party at Los Arcos. Jeannie ran and got table decorations and Amy, Nap, Katie, Matthew and Becky all joined us to surprise Esa.

We ate dinner, sang happy birthday, ate birthday flan,

(See how blurry the fork is? Yep, she was excited!)

played with candy teeth Jeannie bought her,

and played round after round of Apples to Apples. Thanks to everyone for coming - she had a great time.

Sunday Katie and I walked the pups for about.................10 minutes. Eh, better than nothing. We then spent the entire afternoon playing MORE Apples to Apples with Jeannie and Becky.

I'm pretty sure I have just about memorized all these cards now!

This week's goal is to eat at home every night and TRY to walk the dog 3 or 4 days. We'll see how it goes!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

I've been tagged.

Here’s a chance for a little interactivity for all the bloggers out there. Below is a list of 100 things that I think every good omnivore should have tried at least once in their lives. The list includes fine food, strange food, everyday food and even some pretty bad food—but a good omnivore should really try it all. Don’t worry if you haven’t, mind you; neither have I, though I’ll be sure to work on it. Don’t worry if you don’t recognise everything in the hundred, either; Wikipedia has the answers.

Here’s what I want you to do:1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.4) Optional extra: Post a comment here at linking to your results.

The VGT Omnivore’s Hundred:
1. Venison
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare
5. Crocodile
6. Black pudding
7. Cheese fondue
8. Carp
9. Borscht
10. Baba ghanoush
11. Calamari
12. Pho
13. PB&J sandwich
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
16. Epoisses
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns
20.Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries
23. Foie gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn, or head cheese
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper
27. Dulce de leche
28. Oysters
29. Baklava
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl
33. Salted lassi
34. Sauerkraut
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a fat cigar
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O (I mean I think, do you mean jello shots?)
39. Gumbo
40. Oxtail
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects
43. Phaal
44. Goat’s milk
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
46. Fugu
47. Chicken tikka masala
48. Eel
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
52. Umeboshi
53. Abalone
54. Paneer
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal
56. Spaetzle
57. Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV
59. Poutine
60. Carob chips
61. S’mores
62. Sweetbreads
63. Kaolin
64. Currywurst
65. Durian
66. Frogs’ legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake
68. Haggis
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette
71. Gazpacho
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost, or brunost
75. Roadkill
76. Baijiu
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
78. Snail
79. Lapsang souchong
80. Bellini
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict
83. Pocky
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant.
85. Kobe beef
86. Hare
87. Goulash
88. Flowers
89. Horse
90. Criollo chocolate
91. Spam
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
94. Catfish
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
98. Polenta
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
100. Snake

Ok, Olemissmom - tag, your turn!

Was It Worth It?

"The Republican National Committee has spent more than $150,000 to clothe and accessorize vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin and her family since her surprise pick by John McCain in late August."

Sounds crazy, right?

Well...........maybe McCain is right and she did need clothes.

Oversized vest, long sleeve jacket and turtleneck?

Is that a plastic visor?

Denim jacket? Ok. Denim Shirt? Not ok.

Early 1990's sweater vest?

I give her credit for hair here. At least it isn't striped like it has been at some times. But you should not wear clothes that are the same color as your skin and never have something tie around the largest part of your body.

Is she wearing the First Dude's shirt?

I can't even wrap my ahead around this pink thing.

And, she allowed herself to get photographed in it more than once!

Oh dear. Hate the shoes and they don't even go with the outfit. This also clearly illustrates her need for both new clothes and an interior decorator.

So maybe she really did need some help. However, this is ridiculous.

You are seven. Gimme that bag.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

You Can Have Your Cake And Get Nauseated Too!

After work I went to pick up the wedding cake that JB had babysat for us for a year! They actually had to move it when they moved into the new house. JB even added icing to it to make it look pretty for us. Thanks JB!

He carefully put it in a box for the ride home. It didn't look quite as nice by the time I made it home but it was still pretty.

And you will never guess who gave us this card.

Hey, how did you know?

Mom also gave us cd's with Naturally 7 music on them. I haven't listened to them yet but I'm sure they are great! Thanks mom!

This was left on our front porch yesterday

It is a really cool plant with a very sweet card from Reverend Michael Sanchez. Let's hope I don't kill it!

My wonderful sister brought us these

Wrapped in a cute bag with lots of

Paper! It's our paper anniversary - get it? She's so clever.

I slaved over the stove and made a special and fancy gourmet dinner for the two of us.

It took about 11 minutes - just long enough to boil the pasta and pour a jar of sauce on it. Because it was a special occasion, I even threw a piece of bread in the toaster. I think this was a pretty traditional first anniversary meal. (Come on, who actually has any money on their first anniversary?)

After dinner we cut the cake.

I had been warned by everyone not to expect it to taste good so I knew it was just about the tradition. I was interested to find out what flavor this layer was because as you may recall (you better) each layer of my cake was a different kind.

The top ended up being yellow cake with strawberry icing in between the layers. The outside white icing was very................................bizarre. Martin was more adventurous than me so he actually took a bite of it and it was literally like chewing bubble gum.

Surprisingly, the cake part was pretty darn good! Very moist and still had a lot of flavor.

You can see how the outside icing looks a little weird. Martin ate two pieces (without the icing) and I had a few bites of mine until I started to feel a little sick. Then we retired to the sofa to wait for the nausea to disappear. Luckily it only lasted about 20 minutes.

We spent the rest of the night watching crazy television shows and enjoying the fireplace.

Martin and I thought our evening was lovely. I think the kids were bored to death.

Thanks again to all of our great friends and family. You made our wedding so incredibly special and we appreciate you all thinking of us yesterday.

Be sure to read my blog tomorrow. Katie is planning our anniversary party for tonight - I'm sure it's going to be a crazy fun time. Can't wait Katie!!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Weekend Wrap-Up

Friday I was off work and was able to meet Lindsay for lunch. We had a great time and we really need to do that more often! I was even lucky enough to spend a few minutes with her adorable kids. Seriously - these kids are BEAUTIFUL!

After lunch I made a quick stop and found a Christmas present for Grandma and Martin's sister (two more down!).

Friday night Martin was sick so I took the girls and met Katie and Jeannie for dinner. Somehow dinner turned into a night at the salon and both girls went home with french braided hair.

Saturday Martin was still sick.........and I had a hair appointment so Jeannie offered to take the girls with her while I got my hair done. I wanted to do something different with my hair but after talking it over I pretty much stayed with the usual:

No, I'm not crying. I don't know why my eyes look so teary.....

I then met Jeannie, the girls and ALL the dogs for lunch. We sat outside and enjoyed the great weather while Marisa and Anna told me how Jeannie had been spoiling them rotten. See -

Yeah, it broke but it was still cute.

Anna wanted the cookie that would "change her mouth colors". And, indeed it did.

Saturday night Martin was finally able to get out of bed and we took Marisa and Anna to the haunted house. This was Marisa's fourth time to go through but Anna had never actually made it. In the past, she would get a few steps inside, bury her head in Martin's shirt and beg to be carried out. This year she FINALLY made it through and she was very proud!

That picture was taken before we went through - I think Marisa looks more scared than Anna. Anna looks like somebody gave her some "liquid courage".

We left the haunted house with Anna and beaming and went back to Jeannie's house for dinner. We had roast, mashed potatoes, broccoli with homemade cheese sauce and chocolate pie for dessert. After dinner we played hours and hours of Apples to Apples until the girls were literally falling asleep at the table. We then headed home.

The picture barely turned out but Marisa was so exhausted she fell asleep on top of Layla on the ride home. Layla clearly didn't mind.

Sunday consisted of more hours of Apples to Apples and multiple pitchers of margaritas (thanks Jeannie!). It was a great way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

Today is our actual anniversary. Happy anniversary to us! Thanks to Kelly for the sweet, sweet card that we got in the mail on Saturday. Thank you for thinking of us. We love you!

Tonight we are planning on staying in and eating year old cake. Don't be jealous!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

A Very Happy Anniversary

(Warning: All photographs were taken with phone camera and are pretty crappy quality.)

Martin and I had a great celebration last night. First was dinner at Satterfield's:


Martin - Roasted Garlic and White Bean Soup with Crispy Prosciutto, Creme Fraiche and Chive Oil

Me - Fried Gulf Oysters and Okra with Frisee and Chunky Tartar Sauce


Martin - Buttermilk Battered Tanglewood Farms Chicken Breast Truffled Israeli Couscous "Mac & Cheese" Braised Collard Greens and Buttermilk Sawmill Gravy

(see! terrible picture!)

Me - Hickory Grilled Hereford Beef Filet Pan Seared Cherry Tomatoes, Purple Mashed Potatoes, Dragon Tongue Beans and Chimichurri


Chocolate cake thing and chocolate ice cream with caramel on the side (I don't remember what it was called or what was in it.)

We got one of the corner booths, shared a great bottle of wine and stuffed our faces. The food was amazing. Half way through we switched plates and I don't know which was better. The chicken was so flavorful and the beef was cooked perfectly. Haller (the chef) remembered it was almost our anniversary so he prepared the dessert and put a candle in it. Everyone there came up and spoke to us and congratulated us on making it a year (these days that's forever, see Chris Kattan). I wonder if our celebrity status there expires after a year....

After dinner we headed to see Michael Buble. This show was very surprising. The opening act, Naturally 7, was amazing. They are an a capella style group but they call what they do "Vocal Play". They are able to create the sounds of an electric guitar, violin, bass, harmonica, turntable and drums.

Seriously, some people in the crowd didn't even realize it was a capella. You really need to look these guys up on You Tube.

Then Michael came on stage. I expected to sit back, relax and just listen to him sing. I had no idea he was such a performer! He was really really funny and get the crowd laughing the entire time - and the man has some moves. He had all the middle aged women in the crowd throwing themselves at him.

We left early because I was exhausted and we wanted to beat the crowd but it was a great concert.

Happy Anniversary Martin. I love you with all my heart.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Happy Hump Day!

Ok so we are over the hump. Two more days and then the weekend - can we make it?

Christmas update: Mom done. Matthew and Mikel done. JB done. Katie done. Still left: Grandma, Martin's dad and Dad (birthday AND Christmas, please people bring on the ideas!).

I decided if I dress like it's winter maybe it will get cold. Yesterday I actually pulled out the knee high boots. I stuck with my camel colored ones which I thought would look more fall than winter.

Today I'm wearing these:

I'm wearing mine with a dark grey dress and red high heeled pumps.

I just recently bought a pair of these:

Mine are black (and will not be over the knee). I plan on wearing them with leggings, pumps and a dress. Come on cold weather!

Today I am trying to decide if I could pull of these:

Maybe not in that color and paired with a skirt or dress and cute ankle boots (note: I actually found a cute pair, but beware there are a lot of ugly ankle boots out there).

Then I just need to purchase this:

The bright color would be a great contrast to my mostly black and grey fall/winter wardrobe.

Tonight we are celebrating our anniversary (early, it's not actually until the 20th). We are going to go to dinner at the restaurant that catered our wedding, Satterfield's, and then go see Michael Buble. Jeannie introduced me to Michael's music a few years ago when we went to visit her in New York and I love him!