Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Home Sweet Home!!

Great News......Nester said I can keep little mare mare!!! **
The two "rules and regulations" that he gave were: 1. clean her shit immediately and 2. don't nag me, or I will yell at Rare (I dont consider myself a nag, so this shouldn't be a problem:)
**of course if I happen to move out of the country someday, I may have to ask Brrrian & Jen (Rare's godparents) to take care of her

I bought her this little bed and I didnt think she was going to use it. My Color again! I kept forcing her to lay in it and as soon as I wold take my hand off her she would jump out. Well the other day when I came home she was all curled up. She jumps out when we get home for some attention. Last week I walked over to the pet store and bought her a name tag. very simple...it says RARE and my phone number. extree cute. On my walk back I pulled my gloves out and the tag must have fallen out then. I thought for sure someone would have called me...and yesterday he did. I will meet him to get it back. I will feel reassured if Rare ever gets out of the house if my number is on her tag. That is, in fact, what they are for, duh!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Cold in NYC

Since Ernesto had a couple lighting jobs this weekend, Smita and I decided to take a little trip. We considered the beach, but FL was only going to be 70 degrees....not that that doesn't sound good, but its not really bikini weather so we went the opposite direction. Sara, who I met through Smita, is so cool! She and I really hit it off right when we met. She picked us up at 9am from Newark airport....and she got a $200 speeding ticket... I think it's because we called her 2 seconds after we landed cuz she wasnt there yet!? Its our fault. Those demanding guests! Sara lives in Hoboken NJ. Very cool area, right accross the water from Manhatten. We stepped out her door (literally) and took the ferry, then the bus then the subway to queens!
PLANES, TRAINS & AUTOMOBILESSara had made plans with her aunt and uncle to have brunch in Queens (where they live) The area is called Jackson Heights and is like a "little India". Jackson Diner is famous for their Indian buffet, and now I know why... it was soooooo yummy. We couldn't stop eating. On the subway from Queens, I captured this pic of the 2 piggys so stuffed they fell asleep.

After a long day of walking and shopping we stopped at a cozy bar for a couple glasses of wine, then took the ferry back to Sara's. Here is the view from her apartment window.
I love NY!! We came home this afternoon by 2pm...easy, smooth trip!

Friday, January 25, 2008

ONE Midtown Kitchen

We wanted to take Beverly put to thank her for selling our home. She retired a year ago from Delta (which is how I know her) and jumped full time into real estate. I would recommend her to any of my friends (and I am..right now...check out her site!) She was even better than I expected. If it was not for her, we may have still just been thinking about fixing our house up to sell . She came over and cracked the whip, gave us the little push we needed and gave us a Designed to Sell list which she checked in with us to see our progress. She always followed through on what she said she was going to do, and we knew everything was being taken care of. Also a plus, she consoled me when I was stressed out and crying. Overall, she has everything you would want in a real estate agent! We met at our place last night so Bev could check it out! She brought us a nice bottle of wine (weird-one of my favorites too: Los Vascos a cabernet sav from Chile)

After a tour (that took 3 minutes) and a little chit chat on the couch, we headed to One Midtown Kitchen, which is now right down the road. If it wasn't freezing temps I think we would've walked. Smita had to borrow my scarf it was so cold. She was shocked when I told her it was bunny fur. I like to think that they were able to take the fur/tails without harming the little bunnies. This is what I told her. The food was scrumpcious, the ambiance swanky, and the company entertaining!

Monday, January 21, 2008

Lunch Shopping...Don't you?

This has to be one of my best unexpected finds at TJMaxx. Some days when Im working I just need to leave my desk for a while...even when I bring my lunch. I was really looking for this cream colored shaggy rug for our new place, but they didnt have it anymore. What did I find? These 2 leather jewelry cases. Leather and lined in suede-y material, they have so many compartments, even small ones for earrings. Most importantly, they are MY COLORS!! They are perfect! No longer do I have to keep my jewels in the plastic cases, and never again will I take samples of my work in a cigar box. They were screaming PLUMA and are peacock colors to boot?? SOLD!!! $40 for both. Da da da da - da da da da TjMaxx!!!Last night I held the 3rd Geek Night at my house. We had a newcomer and she was excited to get her blog going. Who better to help, but a BLOG ASS like me? It ws fun to show someone who was excited. It seems I'm always telling people that they should start a blog.Mendy titled her blog Blue Skies. She is an amazing photographer and will have a lot of "back blogging to do from past trips, she has worked for DL for a long time. I especially love her title shot , check it out at http://www.mendybruce.blogspot.com/

We were laughing so hard, because Smita started to unload all her geek gear from her bag.

Laptop, blackberry, camera, cords, ipod and 3 jump drives?

We geeked-out until 11pm. When I peeked into our bedroom, I was amazed at what I saw
Just in the last few days, Neto has started petting her and calling her...."come here mare mare" He even uses a funny voice like I do....I may ge to keep her!!!

Sunday, January 20, 2008

It's like we never even left Midtown....

We are now setteled into our 850 sq ft place, and we are both really happy with the space. It is the lower level of a house in a neighborhood called Morningside. It is actually only two blocks away from our first apartment when we moved to the ATL in 2000. It is nice to be back in midtown. I love how there are so many people out and about walking and running in this area. Don't get me wrong I loved our house, shoot, it's was only 7 miles from here, so it was very convenient to midtown but I am excited that can just walk down the street to go to Kroger and Piedmont Park (pito park, as my dad likes to call it) and Virginia Highlands. There is a gym that we are probably going to join and we can walk there too. As a matter of fact I am going to take a run right now and stop at this awesome furniture store, and go to the petstore to look for a bed for Rare. Even if I dont have a purpose, running in this neighborhood is great...the houses are beautiful. Its old and every house is different and there are a lot of trees. I cant wait to see it in the spring (the best time of year in Atlanta if you ask me) when everything is blooming. This picture was taken standing in the front of our house standing in the street.
You enter our apartment from the back of the house where we have a parking spot in the driveway. There is a little brick patio, with a beautiful wall of ivy as a backdrop. I will still get to do container gardening. I brought all of my blue flower pots, and sold the rest. That is the sadest part about leaving our house. I had such a great garden! So many plants.....many transplanted from my moms garden in Ohio.
Besides the awesome neighboorhood and the patio, the main reason we decided to rent here is the storage. In the bedroon, there are his and her closets and in the living room 2 huge closets, one of which was made into an office. Then in the little kitchen there is a huge pantry. It just felt right when we walked in. See the double white doors? Huge! The open closet was made into an office space.
And here is looking the other way.... Ernesto hung our tv ......in the bedroom. In the living room there is a built-in for the tv above the mantle. which is hidden by a mirror, but our tv is too big and wont fit, so ernesto had to be a handyman again. We'll have to get a smaller tv for the living room. I bought new bedding...just for a fresh start!! The most important thing about the kitchen was that it had a gas stove, and even though it seems smaller than our house, it actually has more counter space, more cabinets and a huge pantry so we are pretty happy about that.
Let it snow, Let it snow, Let it snow
It was beautiful here on Saturday, It snowed for hours and we went out to play in it...and shop, of course! (which btw, I am giving up for the month of February, along with sweets)
As Smita and I had a baileys and coffee, we felt like we were in the mountains or some little cafe in europa, it was cool getting a little dusting of snow. I have been able to wear my black furry boots several days too. I really dont mind the cold because I know it will be over in a minute.
Saturday night we picked 2 new recipes to make. Ernesto made a scallop linguine with peas, which sounds delish, but really was not a repeater...actually none of us finished it. Then Smita and I pick a red soup that looked so good in the picture. It was a Russian Borsht. Basically a lot of root veges boiled and pureed. Once everything was cooking we realized there arent even any spices in this soup. vinegar, salt and pepper? Did they say that was it?Is anyone reading this?? I know Ernesto just likes to look at the pictures, so Im curious about you?????

Thursday, January 17, 2008

CLOSING a Chapter of our Lives!

We actually got all of the stuff out out of our house by closing time...12 noon on Tuesday. It was so wierd being in an empty house. Rare was very confused as to what was going on.

Nothing like cutting it close! We had to do a few last things like take down my chandelier. We wrote it in the contract that it goes with me. I got this thing a long time ago at a yard sale in Wooster Ohio for $10. I love it, it's so unique! (if not a bit dusty)

I cant hang it in our new place but it will come with us to our next home. Ernesto even cooked out ribs monday night for a few neighbors...a cookout the night before? I told him that is crazy, but he wanted to do it!
Here he is at the closing ......signing all my stress away!!!

We gave eachother high-five's "woo-hoo debt free!" I hope we didn't scare the new homeowner...this is his first. yikes! That night we went out to dinner to celebrate at City Grill downtown. Our waiter gave us great service and threw in an extra mango-strawberry martini,

of which I only had a few sips and moved on to a dry vino tinto (malbec, my favorite)This is a horrible pic, (not of you, mi amor) but not sure what happened with the lighting [of my camera] but you can kind of see the walls in the background. There were painted trees in turquoise and greens, high ceilings and chandeliers. It was the old Federal Reserve Bank, built in 1912, and it has the feel of grandeur often found in old, established clubs and hotels in New York and Europe. It also has that grandeur price, but I had a $75 gift certificate that I had won at my office xmas party (which sadly didn't even cover half the bill) After our shrimp apetizer, salads, and steaks (I had filet, Neto had porterhouse) they brought us chocolate truffles made in-house. Ernesto really enjoyed them.

And these are the days of our lives.

Monday, January 14, 2008



Ernesto has made it clear that he doesnt want Rare to come with us to our new place. It is a one bed/1bath and Rare doesnt know the area, and the yards are smaller, so I would not want her to go outside....which is fine with me, but Ernesto likes to have her be indoor/outdoor so we don't need a litter box. That is his big complaint! The damn litter box!! I think it is easy! I know it has only been 6 months, but I am so attached to Rare. The thought of her not coming with us to our new place had made me start to cry. Brrrian had mentioned at xmas time that he and Jen were thinking of getting a kitty. That would be so great to keep her in the family, she is such a great pet, and cuddly and loves how I call her Rare Mare Mare and when I rub under her chin and say ti ti ti ti. Who will carry this on for her but someone as weird as me.......thats BRRRRIAN, I know it is a perfect fit!! They have agreed to a trial run, (I hope this isn't because I called them crying?) I am 100% confident that they will love her and want to keep her forever. They aren't ready to commit. If anyone understands this, it is ME. It took me 4 months to admit she is my cat, I didnt think I could take care of her with my traveling and such, but it turns out cats are pretty independent (unlike dogs) and you can leave for days at a time-no problem!
To show my commitment to Rare (6 months later) I took her for her first visit to the veterenarian today. It was obvious that I am not an experienced cat owner....especially that I just put Rare in the car like she is a dog. Everyone told me that a cat would freak out in a car, but i didnt have a carrier......does this look like a freaked out kitty?? My little mare mare...

The technicians at the vet asked me a few questions about her. I told them about how Rare just showed up one day on my deck when I got home from work and her loving personality made me fall in love. I didn't really know anything about Rare's history. They asked me if she was going to be an indoor or outdoor cat going forward and I started crying right there at the counter. "I don't know we are moving and my husband doesn't want to keep her, my brother said he might, but if he doesn't I will have to find her another home." I just couldn't get that out of my mouth without crying. She brought me a tissue. I cried off and on during the visit. My poor mare mare! She was really good in the office. Scared and curious she investigated every corner of the room while we waited for the vet to come in....I think she was looking for a way out.

Dr. Villajes from Village Vets in Decatur was wonderful with Rare. She guessed that she is one to one and a half years old by the size and tarter on her teeth. She cleaned her ears.......and also felt some scare tissue on her stomach indicating that she had been fixed. I knew she was too friendly to be a stray. Then last night my neighbor Grady told me that Rare was in a litter of a cat who belonged to his neighbor. She has moved away and the house is now for sale. How could she leave Rare like that??? I got her treated for fleas (even though she didnt have them) but that was a requirement of our new landlord. Neto let her sleep in our bed last night. I convinced him that she was scared in the new environment. She was hiding under the couch all day. Your safe now my little mare mare......

Here she models her new turquoise collar with rinestones.


WHY IN THE HELL DID WE EVER AGREE TO A JANUARY 15th CLOSING DAY? With Ernesto's lighting business, he is still busy taking lights down through the 2nd week of January. We should've at least said January 30. We are such good procrastinators, it was a week before and I finally started weeding out. I was starting to feel really overwhelmed and Ernesto.....wasn't. "What are you stressed about? It will be fine." Will this man ever be stressed?
Have you ever heard of craigslist? It has to be the coolest concept EVER. It is basically a FREE online message board. You just click on your city and you are able to barter/buy/sell/look for anything and everything...and unlike ebay...it's free!!!! I have used it several times before, but with our move this week, I have STUFF STUFF STUFF to get rid of, and ......"one mans trash is another mans treasure" right?
Boy did it go quick too! My bedroom set, another dresser, a table, a desk, dehumidifier, wrought iron bakers rack.....I just don't want to take ANYTHING with me that I don't love. This is a process that is really needed too when moving from a 3bed/3bath home into a 1bed/1bath apartment. When I saw the two men taking apart my bedroom set and struggling to carry it out the door, I thought better you than me, what a hassel!! My mom did her best to convince me not to sell it..."that is a beautiful set"...yes, but it's not my style...."you have only had it a few years"...yes, but it's paid for..."you could use it in a spare bedroom"...yes, but we are moving to a 1 bedroom ....so I sold it. Sorry Mom!
Even after selling all of that stuff on Craigslist, we had a lot of other little misc stuff to get rid of......soooooooooo, Smita and I had a yard sale.

We had stuff out in the yard at 8am and the early bird gets the worm.

The first customer, who came in a huge van bought my globe, my cast iron garden table and a wicker cafe table with chairs....all for $70. Yep! I was DEALIN'!! I wanted to clear out, not get rich! We spent the whole day out there, and ironically I met some of our neighbors that we hadnt ever met. I wish we had, they were so cool. We are only moving 6 miles away, so we still canmeet up. We exchanged numbers. One neighbor is a graphic designer and has some great ideas for Pluma Jewelry, so we are going to talk soon. At the end of the day we gave stuff away, because we were going to load in up for goodwill anyway. We ended up making over $600....and thats not counting the furniture I sold on craigslist....WOO-HOO!!

Sunday, January 13, 2008


Saturday night was the LAST SUPPER at our house on Hosea Williams. Cry cry cry.......
Smita and I were tired from the yard sale that day, but feeling like cooking a great meal. Something special. Ernesto was busy with lights all day so he deserved a treat too!

I have made a habit of going to the Dekalb Farmers Market whenever I am home on the weekends. You can find anything there, it is so huge. It is such a wonderful experience. As soon as I arrive I make a bee-line for the bakery. One coffee and an almond horn...I need to find out how they make this delicious cookie. I would like to start baking (that is another story) the only thing in my repetoire now is almond & anise biscotti, which I must toot my own horn, is pretty darn good. Anyhoo, the international food, and the people and all the flags.....the farmers market is one of the most enjoyable things to do if you enjoy food...So much bread to choose from, I went with a rustic italian.The cheese selection is out of this world too. We always pick a new one to try. This one Smita has is a made from sheep milk. Im really trying to like goat cheese, and this sheep cheese was a step in the right direction.
I bought filet mignon the other day, and picked a recipe I made once before a couple years ago. You cook the steaks in a red rine reduction with shallots, then top the steaks with blue cheese and pansko bread crumbs (a crunchy japanese style) and put under the broiler until toasted. Smita made roasted potatoes and a creamed spinach. To see the whole menu and recipies check out Smita's cooking blog.

Chin chin....to all the good times at 2823 Hosea Williams Dr.

Sunday, January 06, 2008


I have to say, I could have been a bit more productive this weekend. It is just so hard to get started...I DONT WANT TO PACK....so I procrastinated, which is my specialty!! Friday night my team at work had the Delta box for the Thrashers game.....who? yeah, the hockey team here in atl....I dont care either, but we had a great time hanging out. It can be a bit stressful at work so when we leave the office we like to have fun! Here are my bosses Brett and Scott (and Mangala) ....at first glance they seem like "normal" guys.But WATCH OUT...because once Structure Ass Scott (as I like to call him) has a couple drinks (girly ones at that) ... he gets out of control. It just gets worse and WORSE.

And Brett (or BING, as I secretly refer to him) is pretty consistant. SARCASTIC ASS!! Believe it or not this is not too different from how he acts IN the office. Brett will typically do this as he passes you in the hall. Or maybe slip one in when you least expect. ...
Chris, Mendy, Schotzy and me. Having a good time! Yes, there was a hockey game going on. Here Kelly and Chris take advantage of the great seats. Many just took advantage of the free food and beverages!!Saturday, I wanted to get an early start on packing....but had to run to TJMaxx for a "quick" return. What? It was quick, I was only there an hour and a half this time!! Neto called and "saved" me at 11am. I wish it was under better circumstances, His reliable little truck was undrivable. Notice the wheel in the pic below...it is totally going the WRONG WAY!! Something metal broke, and it had to be towed. I went to get him and his workers in midtown. Luckily the guy who was helping Ernesto drives a truck so they were able to continue taking down lights within the hour!
Smita came over later that afternoon and felt like cooking. Shouldn't I be packing? Well, she really was craving goat biriani from her favorite Indian restaurant Zyka. So we compromised, we picked a couple side dishes from the Indian cookbook Neto bought me for xmas..... headed to Zyka for the goat and stopped at the farmers market. I got a kick out of the sign for the restuarant.
At the farmers, we picked up 4 bottles of wine. There were too many good ones to chose from!We started with the rioja Campo Viejo from Espana. It was quite good, and only $7.Shouldn't I be packing?
Smita, gives her Raita a taste. We also got crazy and picked a desert to make. Spiced pears in red wine....served with ice cream. It turned out nice, let me know if you are interested in the recipe.

On Sunday, thanks to my friend and co-worker SCHWARTZY, we had a great meal tonight, with harldly any work!!!! He made this for his new years eve party and shared it with me! It was great, because I never use my crock-pot and this came out DEEE-LISH!! Thanks Schwartzer!!


3lb pork ass
1Tbsp. paprika
1tsp. thyme
1/2tsp each of salt & pepper
6 garlic cloves minced
Combine above ingredients, rub on pork, place in slow cooker.
In blender add can of 7oz. chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, 3/4 cup water, and one small onion quartered. puree and pour over pork in crock pot. Cook on high heat for one hour and on low heat for 7. take pork out to cool then shred, skim fat off and combine. Serve in warm tortillas.

Well, since I didnt get as much packed as I had hoped this weekend, I will be in a rush this week!! SHOCKER, right? Oh, but then there is the OSU game tonight, and Neto's cooking class Tuesday, and my jewelry class starts Wednesday! Shouldn't I be packing? Good news is that on Friday we actually found a place to live...and we had 10 days to spare!!
....and THAT is how the Espinesters ROLL!


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