Wow, the time has flown. And not because I am having fun. On the contrary, there has been so freaking much to do and my brain is split a thousand different places…most often with “you need to be studying” on repeat, which doesn’t help anything. But January, as a month, seemed nice and long. Not usually my favorite month by any stretch of the imagination but I’m also needing time to go nice and slow for a few months, at least until April.
While the weather has been mostly wet we haven’t had that many chilly days and we have had some breaks in the rain that help keep me sane. It hasn’t been the worst weather this January, nor the best. Probably perfect for studying and working, which is more or less what both of us have been doing. Since being back we have had a little bit of fun in the form of:
Saw the Book of Mormon at the Paramount Theater and loved it!! Enjoyed a Mexican happy hour beforehand at Rioja with Mark and his girl.
I took a cycle class complements of Yelp and really liked it. Since then I have started ClassPass and have checked out two more spin classes and a barre class. I like the philosophy of ClassPass and being able to do a variety of workouts at a variety of places with a very flexible schedule.
Enjoyed a dinner at home with Billy and Ainsley.
Dined at Eastlake Bar and Grill twice with Groupons.
Enjoyed FareStart community dinner for the month of January and there have been many stellar meals at FareStart already in this new year for Guest Chef Night.
Have had fun and love our Google Home.
Obsessively watched the entire last season of Top Chef – Charleston, made bets on the winner, and now I owe Bryan two GOOD massages.
And watching Always Sunny in Philadelphia all over again because even though it is vain and vulgar it is quite possibly the most hilarious show on television and puts us in a good mood every single night.
I’ve been rowing for short stints when I can, mostly for a break in the study action to break up the doldrums.
We got sushi with the whole gang for Carina’s short return to Seattle this past Sunday. Everyone (except Mark) I hadn’t seen since well before Christmas so it was great to catch up with everyone all at once. Sushi was meh.
We had our first Novelty Hill/Januik wine club member party of the year and like usual we collected our wine and enjoyed the always delicious dinner feasting.
And we have been cooking as much as we can at home, per one of my goals for “18 for 2018” to come shortly in the next post. My goal was 20 dinners at home each month but with FareStart every week and other occasions with friends or fun that are just not right to turn down I have modified it to 20 meals at home, which works because we do have brunch at home most weekends when we could (and sometimes do) go out for brunch. And we have been doing pretty good with this with only a few quick dinners scattered in there. We have been doing a lot of the cooking together to get Bryan some recipes under his belt. We started off the year with a trio of meals from Home Chef delivery service, we made an awesome and simple hot sausage and fennel pasta, callilloo stew, beef stroganoff, chicken paprikash, moussaka, steak and potatoes, Thai turkey lettuce wraps, and others and they have all been delicious.
As you can see, for an entire month we haven’t been that active. Largely that is due to my study schedule (which isn’t all that strict but just needs to happen) and that Bryan was pretty darn sick for a good long time. He even had to take two days off of work because of how awful he felt. But being stuck at home isn’t too bad with good company. At some point we are going to start going stir crazy though. Fortunately, we do have some exciting performances and dinners out ahead in our future.
What a week we have had leading up to Christmas. We’ve had one thing after another each and every day this week but all/most festive and fun…just maybe not the best medicine for getting over a sickness.
Monday night I had a girls night scheduled and hosted by Deana in her super cozy apartment’s social room. We had the fire going, Christmas music on the Amazon Echo, Pagliacci’s pizza ordered, my salad, Anne’s mocktail (because she is expecting) and got ready to make gobs and gobs of chocolate dipped everything; pretzel rods, pretzel twists, popcorn and oreos. Deana had all sorts of supplies and I was impressed with her talent and know-how of the chocolate dipping process. Everything looked great and certainly tasted great. I didn’t get home until about 10:30 with an absolute sugar/chocolate high.
Chocolate drizzled popcorn
Beautiful and balanced chocolate covered pretzels
Tuesday night Bryan and I had plans to go to dinner at Harvest Vine to use one of our gift certificates for 2017. We got seated in a cute corner table in the taverna area downstairs, selected a Rioja wine and four tapas and took in the cute holiday decor and relaxing music. For dinner, we chose well, really well! We started with the roasted cauliflower with salsa verde that was crispy, soft, salty and tangy all at the same time. We also had the seared sea scallops with an almond and pepper romesco sauce which was as excellent with the scallops as it was with the side of warm and crusty baguette. Our second round were the meats; the always available but always delicious Iberico pork with panadera potatoes and cider sauce and the seasonal venison with oyster mushrooms and root liquorish sauce. Both were so amazing and cooked to perfection. We got a slice of the musicians five-nut caramel tart with whipped cream for dessert and didn’t get home from there until after 10 pm.
Pork with potatoes and scallops with romesco
Wednesday night was the oddly timed FareStart Guest Chef Night Volunteer Appreciation Night. A good many were there despite being so close to the holidays and we were treated to wine and appetizers while we got to enjoy one another and provide any feedback we have on how GCNs are run. We stayed in the restaurant well past the end time of 8 pm so about seven of us walked over to Le Caviste for more wine and conversation. We didn’t leave on this night until nearly 11 pm.
Thursday was really a pretty quiet day for both of us at work with many people already beginning their travels. I also had scheduled a cleaning service to give me some help and feel like I have piece of mind knowing that the house is clean before we leave for a week. If only they would go through our clutter and stuff and do that for me too. We had plans to dine at Bin on the Lake for views over Lake Washington to take in the holiday boat parade. However, we didn’t realize until midway through dinner that the holiday boat parade was beginning from Kirkland Marina and not Carillon Point Marina in Kirkland, and was heading north not south. Oh well, we say a few boats lit up making their way north and we had a delicious dinner with the lake in the distance. We each got great salads to start and I had the Skuna Bay salmon dish and Bryan the seafood risotto and we both left quite stuffed and happy.
Last day at work for 2017 and that is exciting yet I’m also a bit reluctant for the work to come in 2018. This year has been all design; calculations, drawings and I honestly love it all. Next year is going to be a lot of reviewing submittals during construction and corralling other disciplines to get the building permit acquired for the Seattle Public Utilities ship canal project. That also means that part time I am going to be moving up to SPUs building a few days a week. Certainly a few mixed emotions for me on ending a good year of work and being a little apprehensive about the next years work but I am also ready to start 2018.
Home to pack all my cold weather gear and presents for the next week.
As the holidays are approaching it seems like everyone is getting sick. We are no exception, as we both came down with sore throats, achy bodies, and sniffles over the weekend and the entire office and city seems to be as well. But the festivities go on as do we, sickness and all. And we still had a good weekend and a good time drinking and eating more than we should given the circumstances and staying out late.
Friday night, Bryan and I headed over to Bellevue on the eastside for some laughs at the Parlor Comedy Club, seeing Harland Williams who was definitely one of those pick on the audience type comedians so thankfully we had a bottle of champagne to enjoy the antagonizing. We also visit Bellevue leaving us with a funny feeling and grateful to make it back to Seattle.
Saturday morning is when the true suffering began. I woke up hardly able to swallow or talk. Very worried about my ability to attend the Christmas Party that night, I downed several cups of Throat Coat tea before heading to my hair appointment to get my hair lightened again. Once Saturday night came I had conned myself into thinking I was feeling better and we both got dressed up for the party and headed to Georgetown to the Museum of Flight. Our company’s party was in the “shuttle room” so along with the usual dinner and drinks we got to tour the inside of the simulation shuttles used to train every single astronaut who has been in space. That exhibit was pretty cool but overall the entertainment and space was a little odd. The food must have been good because both Bryan and I left with a horribly full stomach. Our sickness hit us just before 11 pm when we both became completely tired and headed home.
Right before we scrammed.
Inside the simulator
Many buttons and compartments
Sunday morning came and with it lots of rain and grayness. We attended a great Christmas-catered service at church, then picked up some items for the gifts we were making, and headed home to settle in for an important Seahawks game. After a good brunch, the bad game began and it was horrible and wasn’t getting any better. We turned it off at the beginning of the 4th quarter because it was upsetting us both and began the task of making our gifts. It was a team effort and we were happy with the outcome. We made a good dinner to enjoy at home in front of our Christmas tree, lazily ending a good weekend.