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Crawling into Bed

Santa Barbara's June gloom
has become July & August gloom as well.
The fog creeps in & sticks around
until about 1 o'clock.
when the sun says "enough!"
and the skies part.
But until then you are left wishing
you could crawl back into bed
snuggle up with your sweetie
and sleep away the gray.
While my bedspread suffices
it's not a thing that dreams are made of
not like these pretties. . .

Ah such sweet dreams :)
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Affordable Online Interior Design--Yes, You Heard Right

Affordable & online are not normally two words that come to mind
when I hear interior design.
But that is exactly what describes
Just choose "your style" from their style categories (which are sooo cute)
send in some pictures & measurements
and voila! They send you an interior design
with  paint swatches,products available for purchase and a bunch of stuff!

I think I'm a combination of these four styles they have on their site.
Even though I may not be in the market for a design
these sweet images & their clever idea
makes me very happy!
Check them out.
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A Little Greener: Farm in a Box

It filters water from the fish tank below
to the yummy veggies above.
Self-watering = heaven.
I'm looking to go a little agro
grow a few things here and there.
This seems amazing! & it's on wheels lol
If you see someone heading down the street with a fishtank/farm grow contraption on wheels
you will know who it is :)
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A Litte Summer Reading List: Book One Review

Little book readers out there, my apologies.  Never have I had such a difficult time finishing a book as I have with Charlie Huston's The Mystic Arts of Erasing All Signs of Death. If anything I am usually the crazy recluse who shuts herself in her room until the last page is devoured, ignoring responsibility and the bfs pitiful pleas that I see reason and go make a meal. I'm the annoying kid at the front of the class with my hand up at the end of the day answering questions the teacher hasn't even asked yet, much to the annoyance of my classmates who would like to leave the confines of those little desks.

Not this time ladies.

This time I couldn't even pick it up without cringing. I came up with excuses not to read it. But in the end I gave in, I do have blog readers counting on me and all lol.

Why folks did I dislike this book? (If you couldn't tell all that harrumphing was meant to convey my dissatisfaction with the read lol) I didn't love this book because of two main reasons.
1. I felt the author may have an uncontrollable urge to make love to himself & possibly marry himself. and
2. What plot?

So like I was saying, after reading five minutes into this book I got the distinct feeling that the author was having an affair--with himself.  Now this could just be a reflection of the personality of the main character Webster Goodhue who is a self proclaimed "dick". Mr. Goodhue really is such a "dick". Why? Well because he won't shut up about it! We get it, something really bad happened to you and your defense mechanism is sarcastic smart-ass humor, but seriously there is only so much I can take. I mean the amount of times the man calls himself a dick, someone else calls him a dick, the word asshole is used both by & against him. It's mind boggling.

So why am I taking this out on the poor author? Well for one he wrote the nonsense and secondly the amount of witty banter going on made me feel like I was in a witty banter contest with the author trying desperately to prove to me how he is the king of said witty banter.. Does anyone remember that show Gilmore Girls? How at first you are impressed at how quickly they chat with each other & how clever their comments are, but by the end you are saying wow please stop this is just getting tiresome.

Part two of my complaint about this story is the slow-moving plot. Now its not like I need something happening every second of the book. Maybe it was because of my preexisting frustration with the dialogue that I felt the plot was lacking. So within the first half of the book we know there is this guy Webster Fillmore Goodhue who used to be a teacher. Something traumatic happened and now he sleeps all day & mooches of his wealthy hippie mom & his tattoo artist best friend Chev who he lives with.

Everyone is fed up with his bs. So he takes a shitty job (literally) with the Clean Team, a group of roughnecks who clean up crime scenes & dead things (and by things I mean people). Classic tale of competent guy avoiding life after a tragedy.He gets involved with questionable girl (Soledad) after cleaning up her dads suicide.At this point SPOILER she has been kidnapped by another group of roughnecks who are after her brother for a  business deal gone bad. Did I mention this deal was over almonds? Apparently almonds pay a pretty penny. Oh yeah and Soledad may or may not be involved in this suspicious business.

Ok so it sounds like a lot is happening, but granted it took getting 3/4 of the way through to get to this. And it's ridiculous.And not the kind of ridiculous I like.

On a positive note if you are an Angeleno you may like this as it references a lot of areas around L.A.Kind of fun. Also the Clean Team plot line is interesting but I'm pretty morbid so I like those types of things. I was thinking it would be more about that business.
I still believe there's hope for it being a show. . .if they just focused a little more on the lives of the people whose remains he handles. . .much more interesting. Like Six Feet Under.

All this negativity aside much respect for the author. I could never get a book down on paper so I can't be too judgmental :)

Anyway I'm not even done yet. . .agh! but I'm so so close. . .just wanted to post this for those who are done to let them know the next book is  

A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving

so if you are ready go ahead & get reading that! I loove John Irving. I'll post the new book in the sidebar when I finish the first one! I promise by this weekend
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How to Hit the Grocery Store Like You Are Robbing A Bank. . .

Confession time guys. I hate grocery shopping. It's a strange subconscious hatred that has only been recently brought to face the light of day. I was telling my coworker "I'm grumpy today" and she said "Are you going grocery shopping after work? You are always grumpy on those days"

It was like a slap in the face.

You know, I am always grumpy when I grocery shop!
Perhaps it's the hordes of shopping carts bumbling & fumbling along the aisles.
Or the people who think that they, by some predestination, deserve to be in line in front of you & will fight you for their god-given right.
Screaming children.
Four words: Old people, self checkout. 

Perhaps worst of all is my own bad habit; not pre-planning a strategic attack. Roaming aimlessly looking for a vegetable side-dish  I could possibly make this week.

So what's a girl to do when grocery shopping has her down?
Hit the grocery store like you are robbing a bank. Also known as the in-n-out method. Or, "groceries, get in my bag or you're swimmin with the fishies tonight"
Any of those titles will do.
How do you manage the old in-n-out? I am here to share a few that have been working for me lately. . .

1. Browse recipes & get inspired!
So I've been getting this advice for awhile now but it was so hard to follow: plan out a weeks meals before going to the store. Ugh! The idea of such monotony made me crazy! But you know what. It's not so bad if you browse a great recipe site & just wait for inspiration to hit you. Instead of feeling like a chore weekly meal planning feels fun.

2. Choose an ingredient of the week
In keeping with the planning of weekly meals, I have been choosing an "ingredient of the week" which I use in multiple dishes those 7 days. I started doing this to limit the food we waste. I'm sure many of you are familiar with the terrible twos. This is the conundrum that couples face when trying to cook. With only two of us the bf & I often waste alot of food that goes bad before I can use it. By choosing an ingredient I will use multiple times I decrease the waste! Example. Ingredient last week was cabbage which I made an apple slaw with to be a salmon burger topping and also used in mahi mahi tacos & used the last bit up in a salad.

3.  Make a List
I am not a natural list maker or user. I prefer the excitement of self-induced chaos. But grocery stores have enough chaos already so I use this list I found here. How cool is it?! Somehow its coolness makes it a little easier for me to put time into listing things . . .lol

4. Divide and Conquer
So I live with he who knows not how to shop. I think one of the bf's worst nightmares would be to be abandoned in a grocery store with a list a mile long. While he might be an engineering genius, getting things from shelves into a cart baffles him. He thinks this pretend confusion will get him out of helping. Alas, I have come up with a solution! Using the printable list I shared above. I make a copy for him & a copy for me.
I then give him the left two columns & I take the right. We each get the ingredients on our sides. lol I know its so crazy right? But it makes it just fly by.

So there's my really long boring tips on how to hit the grocery store like you are robbing a bank.  I thought I would share because they have helped me a lot, in reducing my waste, saving some cash & actually becoming healthier by having to think things through! :)