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Vines [17 Sep 2013|11:07am]
In addition to documenting my travels, I am not also using my blog to document my attempt at a home vineyard/winery.

In all honesty, it is stupid for me to start a vineyard seeing as neither myself nor my housemates like wine. Wine made by people who do not drink wine will be like the beer in Morocco, shit. Still, my backyard will look pretty. 
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Blog-tastic [16 Nov 2012|01:38pm]
I am starting a blog. The focus being my travels, either around the world or just in the bay. I have documented a number of my travels on live journal over the years, so I will likely steal and transfer those stories to the blog at some point. In my fantasies  I get a whole crap ton of followers to my blog and the travel channel offers me a travel show. Then I can quit accounting and travel the world and still pay my bills. It can happen, right? Plus I have the perfect name for a travel show host, so this has to be my destiny. 

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I am going to have a brother! [06 Nov 2012|10:57am]
 Hi ladies!
Hope you're all doing splendid. I just wanted to let you all know some fun Chilean news...Evan and I are engaged!!! I wanted to make sure you chicas know before going "public" on the Book! :) We went for a long weekend in the north of Chile and Evan proposed in the romantic setting of a camping area where we were sleeping in the car, drinking a $4 box of 1.5 liters of wine - we went to the bathroom and when we came out he proposed. hehe At least it was on the beach! But I thought he was joking at first because it was dark and I couldn't see the ring so I figured he found some circular plastic object on the bathroom floor but this time it was for real. So yay! We're engaged but not going to get married until probably fall 2014. Plenty of time to plan the fiesta and just as important, plenty of time to plan Machu Pichu!
Love you all and can't wait to see you in July!!!
xoxoxo
Katy

Katy called me Sunday night and told me. I was the first person they told so I feel extra loved. I was so happy about the news I thought I would supernova from joy and destroy the city of Sunnyvale. Sooooo Happy!!!!
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Halloween 2012!!! [29 Oct 2012|01:33pm]

Katy!!

I have been having the most amazing week. Busy busy busy but all fun.  I think I will break this letter down by days because I cannot come up with a better way to organize it.

Wednesday (10/24) – After work I went with Cathleen up to SF. We were meeting Noah for dinner and a whiskey tasting event but got to the city way earlier than expected, so we sat in a bar and watched some of the World Series. I was totally joining the bandwagon. I couldn't care less about baseball, but it is impossible to not get into it when you are in a packed bar watching the hometown team kick ass.

When Noah finally joined us we went to dinner at a Thai place and then to a Johnnie Walker tasting event. This was the third whiskey event in as many weeks and I am starting to learn a little about it. I don’t really like most of the whiskies but the high end ones are pretty easy to drink. I got to try the Johnnie Walker Blue, and I could tell the difference between that and the crummier ones we drank earlier.

Noah @ Whiskey Tasting

Thursday (10/25) - I got a kickass Groupon for a sushi restaurant in Sunnyvale, so my buddy Liz from PwC came and joined me for dinner. The Groupon was only $20 and it got us Sake, an appetizer and two sushi roles of whatever we wanted. The restaurant was one of the good sushi places with lots and lots of fancy roles. The total for all the food was $50, so we left a $10 tip. $30 total for everything. I was very pleased and full. J

Liz is an excellent seamstress and really into making costumes so after dinner she came over and helped Susan and I decide on costumes for the next several nights of Halloween themed events. Liz promised to teach Susan, Courtney and I how to sew and make tutus. I do not know when this will happen, but someday I will have lots of brightly colored tutus.

Friday (10/26) – Friday was AWESOME. Sarah Peck has a friend whose 30th birthday is Halloween, so he rented out a bar near the Castro and told people to come, drink the free booze at his open bar until the tab runs out, and invite all their friends. Sarah brought Robert & Susan and Susan brought me. I in turn brought Adam and his boyfriend Damien, and Damien brought his best friend Anna. There was a password to get into the party, so random people off the street could come in, but otherwise it was a free for all.

I love Halloween and this party was the way to do it. Almost everyone was dressed up and having a great time. I got to meet lots of interesting people, play a little shuffle board, dance and watch the parade of interesting costumes. The bar was called The Office and my favorite costume was a girl who came as Ms. Scarlett from the boardgame clue. She also brought with her a lead pipe, so she was Ms. Scarlett in The Office with a lead pipe. There was also a guy dressed as Scuba Steve and another dude who was a binder full of women (reference to the presidential election here, not sure if you will get the joke).  I have included a lot of photos from the event so you can see some of my favorite costumes.

I was an army chic, Susan was a lady pirate, Sarah was the color blue and Robert was the tooth fairy. Robert’s costume made him very popular on the Castro. No one on the Castro would believe he was a straight man. It was pretty funny. Susan also got mistaken for a tranny, which having been in that situation before, I found vary amusing.

Saturday (10/27) – Saturday morning I was lazy and around 1 Joe came back from work. Cathleen was having a costume/housewarming party and he needed to find stuff for a costume. He wanted to be a zombie Mormon missionary. We went to Goodwill, a Spirit Halloween store and Target. Gene was also a Mormon missionary, but not in zombie form.

Joe likes baseball so we went over to Fibbar’s for a while to watch part of the World Series and have dinner. I got some delicious mac & cheese. Yum. We couldn’t stay for the whole game, but I got to eat dinner and he got to watch baseball. On a sport related side note, the NHL players are still on strike because they cannot come up with a contract agreement with the teams. The season is not officially cancelled but they have called off all games through November. I am not happy about this.

We left Fibbar’s and went back to my house to get ready. For Cat’s party I decided to wear the flapper dress. Susan went as a Vegas show girl, Robert was some kind of rock star super hero and Missy (the girl who is now renting the cottage) was Jessica Rabbit. She makes an excellent Jessica Rabbit because she has beautiful naturally red hair.

Cat’s party was a lot of fun. I got a little more drunk then I intended because I had planned to drink early and then do water the rest of the night but Kyle showed up late and we ended up doing shots together. It was all good, I was not driving and not hung over the next day, but I did end up more drunk then I intended. Courtney put up a ton of photos on facebook and I have included a few of my favorites in this email. If you want to see all the photos you will have to check out FB.

Sunday (10/28) – Sunday I was super lazy in the morning. It took me forever to get my ass out of bed. When I finally did, Joe and I made lunch and then did yard work. We are trying to de-weed the landscaped portion of my back yard. It is a slow process but I find it rewarding because the sections we have managed to clear look so much better. Joe is a trooper and has been helping me out with all the weeding. He made the mistake of admitting that he finds it fun to do the weeding in small batches, so now I intend to take full advantage of him and his weeding skills.

After weeding we hung around the house until the baseball game started and then walked over to Fibbar’s. It was game 4 and the Giants had won the first 3 games, so if they won they would sweep the series. Needless to say the bar was packed, and if you could not tell from the massive amount of Giant love on FB, they won. I would not call the game exciting, but there were a few high energy moments and when it finally ended the world erupted in crazy.

So that was my weekend. It was a good weekend and I am happy. This week should be fun and busy too. Tonight I have BP and a potluck at Ben & Debs, Tuesday I have class and need to carve Halloween pumpkins, Wednesday is Halloween and my street is having the usual block party, Thursday I have NOTHING (yay! A night of rest) and then comes the weekend again.

I think Mom & Dad are going to Tahoe on Thursday, so if you need to get ahold of them you should do so before they leave. Also, I want to start booking the trip to S. America if possible, so if you could ask your boss about time off/working from home either the weekend before Christmas or the week between Christmas and New Years, that would be helpful. I want to get this trip planned so that I know when I will get to see you next. I miss you tons.

*HUGS*

Sister

Photos From Friday of People I Know

Robert & Susan


Robert, Susan & Sarah


Robert & Me


Susan, Robert & Me. This may be my favorite image from the weekend. Susan looks so pretty and I am just ruining the picture by eating her face


Pictures From Friday of People I Do Not Know But I Liked Their Costumes

Birthday Dude Jonathan (American Flag) and Ms. Scarlet.


Spaceman


Scuba Steve & Google Founders


Binder Full of Women


Robert & Mustache Ride (reference to the movie Super Troopers)



Photos From Cat's Housewarming Party

Gene & Joe as Mormon Missionaries


Me & Missy (Jessica Rabbit)


Me & Bobby (bastard did not dress up!)


Susan (Vegas Show Girl) & Cathleen (Flamenco Dancer)


Me & Susan - yes I ruin all the photos


Courtney (Gypsy) and Me Being Lame and Trying to Dance


Noah (Black Wheres Waldo? or a.k.a. Where the Fuck be Willie?)


Group Photo


Courtney & Cathleen Looking Super Cute

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Venting [08 Oct 2012|12:08pm]

I love my mom. She is a beautiful, kind, talented and a generally wonderful person. However, there is one thing about her that drives both my sister and I totally nuts. My mom likes to drink, and one of her favorite past times is to get shit faced on wine and talk trash about my sister and I. Listening to her tell it, we were the world’s worst hellions and it is a miracle she could have turned such crummy kids into decent human beings. Granted, the stories she tells have a basis in reality, but they are embellished to the point where the actual facts are barely recognizable.

The trend of telling tales to make my sister and I look bad annoys the crap out of us, but the stories are generally about when we were high schoolers and can’t really hurt us. Everyone does stupid shit in high school, and ours was not really different from anyone else’s. However, last night the stories changed. We were out to dinner with a giant group of 12 people, most of whom my mom had met that night. It was Me, Katy, Evan, Dad, Mom, Evan’s parents, Evan’s brother Colin, his wife Mary and adorable son Liam, and Mary’s parents ‘The Whites’.  My mom was at the opposite end of the table from me and about midway through dinner I become the center of attention as my mom starts regaling these mostly complete strangers with the story of my divorce. She casually turns the most painful thing I have ever experienced, something that I am actually still currently experiencing, into a comical story for complete strangers; and I am expected to sit through the whole thing and smile and laugh along with them. As if listening to my painful story broken out in detail was not enough, she ended with the hilarious fact that my subconscious is struggling with my divorce seeing as I am having regular nightmares about losing Jason/Jason being in danger.

Now it is entirely possible I am over reacting to what occurred, I am not exactly a neutral party when it comes to the topic of my divorce, but to me, using your child’s most painful life experience to win friends seems wrong, and making them wear a shit–eating grin while you do it is just cruel. I now feel sick to my stomach. I am really hurt by the whole thing, but I cannot say anything because she might take offence and I have to keep the peace because Katy is in town and we have family dinner gatherings planned every night for the next 5 days. I will get over this, and in truth I should get used to it because I am sure this is just the newest and greatest tale in her collection of trash talking points, but it would just be easier if I could have a night away from her. At least I will not have to sit through the same kind of experience tonight. Tonight’s dinner is with Uncle Joe & Stacy, so they already know all the details, plus they love me and would not find my pain funny. I am not going to miss a single second of time with Katy, so passing on dinners is not an option, but I really could use a night away. Blah.  

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Maura's Golden Birthday [02 Oct 2012|10:42am]

Hi Kates,

I am so excited. You will be here in less than a week. We will have so much fun. I am very excited to see Evan since I saw him only two days when I was in Chile last year. I have not been adding input into the emails with all the girls because I figured you knew I would be down for whatever. I think it would be fun to do a bbq on Wednesday because that way we could invite a few of mom & dad’s friends as well. There are so many people who want to see you, so doing a big group gathering at the house seems like a good way to see as many people as possible.

My weekend was fun. Friday night I went to BP and then over to Courtney’s house and we ate fried chicken. It was just KFC, so not nearly as good as mom’s, but it was still tasty. I think the last time I had KFC was 2000. I have had Poppy’s chicken, because Pinky loved it so I would get it in Florida sometimes, but I never eat KFC. It was greasy but better than I remember it being. At Courtney’s we hung around and played games, sang some karaoke and watched the first episode of a show called Walking Dead. Walking Dead is about zombies and is well done but very gross. I do not think you would like it. Friday is normally “knitting night,” the girls night, but since we were doing the activities at Courtney’s house we allowed boys to penis up our girls night. The night was low key but full of good friends, which is my favorite type of social environment.

Joe spent the night Friday night and then on Saturday morning we walked over to the Sunnyvale farmer’s market. I got lots of berries, a few apples and a delicious brioche. I didn’t have to be in SF until the evening so I spent the day hanging around the house with Joe and being lazy. It was very nice. Around 5 I headed to SF. Diana picked me up from the train station and because Nerissa was not ready, we went back to Diana’s and watched the Texas football game and ate some dinner. John was super nice and made up a lovely meat & cheese plate and then grilled us some sausages for dinner. We hung around watching football and eating and eventually Lauren showed up and Nerissa called saying she was finally showered.

Yummy Meat & Cheese Plate and Sausage


Diana & John Hanging Out Watching Football

We went and grabbed Nerissa and then went over to Maura’s house. Her house is HUGE and so lovely. I guess there are a lot of people living there and that is how they can afford it, but WOW. When we arrived there were already people at the house for the party and we were not even dressed, so we went down into Maura’s room to get ready. As always, getting dressed and putting on make-up was one of the best parts of the night. Everyone looked lovely. I meant to get a photo of all of us to send to you but I got distracted and failed. I think there are some on Facebook, so hopefully you can find time to check those out.

Stolen from Facebook

The party was a lot of fun. It was Maura’s golden birthday, so her boyfriend Dan went all out. It started with champagne and snacks and cake at Maura’s house and then we went to a bar called 15 Romolo. Maura’s mom made a special Dutch cake that was delicious. 15 Romolo was a speakeasy cocktail place and it is where we took the photo booth pictures I emailed you. I sat next to Maura’s mom for a chunk of time and she is very nice and fun to talk to, but she really does not like Maura’s boyfriend Dan since he seems to spend more time making Maura unhappy than happy. Maura’s mom asked that we try and get Maura out for girly things where she is reminded how fun life is and how much she is loved. Since we have plans for girly activities next Saturday and possibly Wednesday I think this is covered for now, but I am going to try and see if I can get Diana and I to plan more dinners and such.

Photo Booth Pictures Sent to Katy 09.29.12

From 15 Romolo we went to Supper Club. It is some night club decorated all with beds. It was not great but I did get an offer to have a three way with this dude I was talking to and what I believe was a female prostitute. We left the club around 1:30 and I went back to Diana’s house. There John, Diana and I watched an episode of Modern family and then I went to bed. I had never seen the show before, even though you have been telling me for years to watch it. It was pretty funny. Since I do not have TV I cannot really watch it, but if it ever shows up on Netflix I will.

Sunday morning Diana, John and I were slow getting up. They had a brunch to go to, so I texted my buddy Adam to see if he was free. He was, so I went over to his apartment and he and his boyfriend Damian made me brunch. It was really Damian making brunch and waiting on Adam and I while we sat around drinking mimosas and playing the trivia style video game You Don't Know Jack. It was so much fun! I haven't played that game since high school but it is still funny.

Damian made this amazing brunch which consisted of a bowl of fresh berries, some poached eggs, bacon and fresh homemade coffee cake. It was a masterpiece! It was great to see Adam. He is one of my best friends from PwC and I do not get to see him enough. I miss him. He told me I need to come visit him in the city more often, and I think I am going to do that. We have too much fun hanging out for me to not go see him.

After brunch Adam and Damian dropped me off at the train station and I went home and cleaned up the cottage with mom. I have made friends with one of the waitresses at Fibbar’s and she was interested in renting the cottage, so mom and I needed to get the place all cleaned up before my friend came over to check the place out. Her name is Missy and from what I know about her she is lovely. I do not know her super well, but we have been talking and bar friends for about a year now.

Missy loved the cottage and wants to rent it! This makes me very happy. I am so much more comfortable renting from someone I at least kinda know rather than from creepy stranger I find off of craigslist. I feel secure that Missy is not going to come into the house in the middle of the night and murder Susan and I in our sleep, and Missy mentioned that she is a baker, so I plan to get fat off of lots of delicious baked goods! Plus turning the cottage around rental wise so quickly makes my life a lot easier because that extra money each month makes a big difference in how easily I can afford my giant mortgage payment.

After showing Missy the cottage I went out to dinner with Joe to a new restaurant they opened in down town Sunnyvale called Bistro Mozart. It had yummy Italian food and was pretty reasonably priced. We only drank water, so I do not know how reasonably priced the wine and such is, but the pasta dishes seemed like they were several dollars less than what they would be at comparable restaurants. Plus the food was yummy, which is the most important part.

So that was my weekend. It was very food oriented, but it was all good food so that generally makes for good weekends. Plus I got the cottage rented, so that makes me extra happy. This week is going to be busy. Monday (tonight) I have BP and I am going to watch the Cowboy game with dad, Tuesday I have the class Cathleen and I are taking at Stanford, Wednesday is more BP and I might go to the Saddle Rack with Susan, Thursday I have dinner with a PwC coworker Liz, Friday I am going to WhiskeyFest in SF with Cathleen and Saturday the most important people come and visit!!!!! I wish I could just skip everything and go straight to Saturday.


Oh, one other exciting thing. Today for lunch I went to Mango's, the Jamacian place in down town PA. I have become buddies with the owner there. His name is Winston. Anyways, for being such nice loyal customers Winston gave Dad and I a free dessert with our lunch. It was a delicious bananas foster type thing. Yum yum. I love dessert and I love free, so free dessert is about as good as life gets. 

Free Dessert

Miss you so so so much!

Love Sister. 

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Several Weeks of Being A Boring Home Owner [25 Sep 2012|04:57pm]

Katy,

How was Bolivia? Did you enjoy the rain forest and Lake Titicaca? I want to hear all about it when you are here in two weeks. I cannot believe that you are going to be home in two weeks. I know it is only for a few days, but any time with you is better than nothing. I am also excited to see Evan, since I hardly got to see him when I was down there in November.

Dad has been busy trying to think of fun things for all of us to do while you are here. I think he has a list of about 20 items, which I find funny since you are going to be here for a total of 6 days (less if you go down to LA). Are you going to go down to LA during the middle of your visit? I know you talked about it previously, but I have not heard if anything was finalized.

I have been bad about writing you but that is mostly because I do not have a lot going on. Since the broiversary, my weekends have been spent working at B&T and trying to clean/repair my house. Since we only have the major returns left I am enjoying work more because it is all the interesting tax stuff.

The house repairs are going slowly but we seem to get something major done each week. The weekend after the broiversary we got Susan moved into the house! She officially lives in the big house with me. It is nice having her around, plus she is extremely organized and has lots and lots of free time, so she has been doing a lot of the house setting up/reorganization that I just do not have time for. She has taken care of entire rooms on her own. She is so organized, and I am not, so I hope she does not hate living with me. I am pretty clean, I just do not care about the type A style organization that she does, but I think Susan is OK with that. When you are home you will have to come by the house and see everything we have done. Susan has so much furniture, so the house looks really lived in now.

Susan painted a mural of a tree on the wall of her room. She did a great job.

This last weekend was particularly satisfying for me. Saturday I worked during the day and then Susan & I started a giant plumbing project in the afternoon and evening. Basically, the shower in my bathroom only has two temperatures, scalding hot and icy cold. I like scalding hot, so I never had a problem with this, but Susan likes lukewarm showers and disliked my shower so much that she was actually showering at the pool after water polo practice rather than shower at home. Susan not being able to use the shower is unacceptable so we went to Home Depot and talked to the people there about fixing the shower so that it would have a range of temperatures. The dude at Home Depot, Robert, was very nice and told us we needed to replace a switch in some valve. He told us what we needed and made the whole project sound rather easy. After working on the shower for 5 hours, multiple trips to Home Depot and knocking a 4 inch hole in my bathroom wall we had gotten nowhere. I was frustrated so Susan, Joe and I went over to Courtney’s house for some awesome karaoke.

Here is just some of the crap we used in the plumbing project

The karaoke was tons of fun. I had a late afternoon coffee and then drinks at Courtney’s, so I had the fun combination of slight drunkenness and caffeinated energy. I am a horrific singer, but I still love to sing, so getting to belt out songs with just friends around is nice. Susan’s brother Robert also came over. I like him, he has lots of energy and is really enthusiastic about life. Susan says he also has some anger issues (mostly focused at their crazy mother), but I have never seen the anger. Robert is going into the airforce in January to become a pararescue (part of a medical unit that parashoots down to help people). I think I am calling this the wrong thing, but the job sounds very interesting. I hope he likes it.

Sunday was the first day I have had since moving into my house where I had NOTHING planned for the entire day. All I had to do was finish or give up on the shower, but no time constraints. Joe spent the night Saturday and so we were lazy all Sunday morning. Having a truly lazy Sunday morning was good for my soul because I felt better Sunday then I had since that awful night Jason told me he no longer loved me. I think I have been pretty good about not letting all the crap with Jason prevent me from continuing to live my life, but at the same time I still have not felt like myself. Between being lazy & only doing enjoyable things, and the excitement about you coming home (I was dancing around with excitement at one point because I was thinking of you coming home), it all lifted the darkness in my insides for a little while. I felt more like my normal happy self. It was good.

Sunday went kinda like this: hung out in bed being lazy and relaxing, finally crawled out of bed and went to the Mountain View farmer’s market, purchased delicious things at farmer’s market, went to La Fiesta for lunch (yum yum yum!), sent you photos of my delicious food from La Fiesta, went home & reviewed status of plumbing project, decided to give up on plumbing project for a few weeks and just do work around where I put back old equipment and turn down water heater, put shower back together using old stuff, a magical shower miracle occurred and poof! shower works and now has a range of temperatures!! Success!!

Susan took the shower apart when I was not there, and I think Joe & I put the shower back together incorrectly, but now it works. I think the shower might be in upside down but we now have a range of temperatures and Susan is happy. I was a little bummed when we were putting it back together because I had spent a lot of time & money on the project and gotten nowhere, but then I got the amazingly happy surprise that it was actually successful. Woohoo!!

Sunday evening I went to a local bar to hang out & watch a little football and talk with the bartender friend of mine. She mentioned that she might be moving out of her apartment and I told her that I have the cottage to rent. Long story short, she is interested in the space (it is walking distance to the bar she works at) and she is going to come by Sunday evening to see it.

Sunday really was a great day.

This week I am pretty busy. Tonight I start a business class over at Stanford that I am taking through their Open University program. The class is pretty expensive but the subject matter should be interesting, and if nothing else, I might meet some local business and VC peoples. Cathleen is going to take the course with me, so that will make it all the more fun.

I have other misc crap throughout the week and then on the weekend I am going to Maura’s birthday party Saturday night in the city. Diana is super sweet and going to let me sleep on an air mattress at her house, so I do not need to worry about getting home. It should be fun; I think we are going out for fancy cocktails. Sunday I will need to clean the cottage and then in the evening my friend will come by to see if she is interested in renting it. I hope she does rent it, it is nicer having people I know out there because I am not afraid they will come stab me in my sleep.

I hope all has been going well for you. I know I have mentioned this several times before, but I really can not wait to see you. I miss you tons and tons and tons!!

All My Love!

Sister. 

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Home [31 Aug 2012|02:30pm]

I am moving back into my house! Hurrah! Jason has moved his stuff out and his moving out corresponds perfectly with Labor Day Weekend, so I can spend the entire long weekend cleaning & repainting bedrooms, and hopefully start living there again. I love my family, they are the best part of my life, but being a 30 year old divorcee living with her parents depresses the hell out of me. I feel like a bad cliché. Instead, I am now a single 30 year old homeowner and future small business owner. That just has an infinitely more sexy sound to it.

I started the cleaning process yesterday. With tons of assistance from my mom and Susan, we have managed to get the whole house cleaned and decontaminated. I believe Jason did not clean the house once after I moved out, so it has been gathering filth for the last 7 months. In addition, Jason had a cat, so there was cat litter, feces and vomit left sitting on the floor. Cleaning the two worst rooms really felt like an episode of Hoarders. There were not piles of junk, but pretty much everything in either of those rooms has to be trashed because of cat ick. I started coughing and at times having breathing problems cleaning the cat crap, but now it is done and I will never have to do that again! It makes me very sad to think that Jason lived in that filth for 6 months, and even more sad to think that he is OK with that, because it indicates that he could be heading down a path similar to his mother.

In addition to the cat grossness, there was this unidentified white goo in/on miscellaneous things in the front living room. I was never able to identify what it was and the places we found it were so random that I am completely perplexed by it. The white goo was in the top of a standing light, on the underside of a shelve and around a door frame. I hope that maybe it is related to one of the photo shoots Jas did at the house, but I can’t image what the goo would have been for. It was just all kinds of nasty and I got horrible flashbacks to the movie Happiness. Eww…..

The plan for the next couple of days is as follows: finish cleaning, move the remaining furniture out of Susan’s room, paint Susan’s room, paint my room, fix the bathroom tile, wax the floors, get my shit moved into my bedroom, seal the kitchen counters, and maybe start the process of moving Susan out of the cottage and into our home! There is of course tons of other fixer-up stuff to get done too, but those are the things I hope to get accomplished over the long weekend. I hope I make it. 

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Because I Want to Save These & Do Not Know Where Else To Put Them [22 Aug 2012|05:24pm]
Accounting Dictionary
Goodwill Impairment: when job, life, etc. gets in the way of fun.
Start-Up Costs: cost of wooing your sweetie before you get them in the sack.
Accelerated Depreciation: when a chick is unattractive or looks old for her age. Example: That chick had a good body but her face was totally subject to accelerated depreciation. Can also use Section 179.
Inventory: collection of guys/girls one is currently dating. See Inventory Methods for additional detail.
Inventory Methods:
1. FIFO: inventory method where relationships are cycled through in the order that they are entered into. Often used by monogamists. 
2. LIFO: inventory method where newest relationship is dropped first. Often used by one in an open long-term relationship.
3. JIT: inventory method where you take whatever is currently available. Often used by sluts and man-whores.

PCAOB - pretty creepy and obnoxiously boring. Aka, stereotypical accountants. Example: That dude is totally PCAOB.

Due Diligence - Checking Facebook to research a person you just met before deciding on the next step in the relationship.

Going Concern - When your friends drag you to some place that you are pretty sure is going to suck. Works for dance clubs, Jack Black movies, and projects labeled as "good opportunities".


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Return of the Emails to Katy! [13 Aug 2012|01:25pm]
Kates

I have been a bad sister and not writing you about all my recent adventures. I cannot remember when I wrote you last, so I will just sum up this weekend and the last couples ones for you.

Four weekends ago I went camping and river rafting with mom and dad on the middle fork of the American River. It was a camping, wine tasting and river rafting excursion Dad got through Travelzoo. The whole thing was a lot more fun than any of us expected. Dad seemed especially pleased because he mentioned multiple times what a good deal the thing was, and how the total cost of the trip barely would have covered the meals had we eaten them in restaurants. Maybe if you and Evan are back in the US next summer, we can all do it together.

After the river rafting we went up to Tahoe for a few days. In Tahoe we did lots of hiking, over eating and butt sitting. We also got to go on Larry’s boat and I did stand-up paddle boarding with Cheryl. The paddle boarding was more of an adventure than Cheryl and I expected because while we were out on the lake a freak storm came up. This was no tiny storm either. There was lighting, thunder and off –and-on hail. Cheryl and I were unable to get back to their dock in Tahoe City in time, so we had to paddle to shore and just hide out under a tree. Cheryl and I were so drenched that at one point a bug flew onto her arm and actually drowned.

In Tahoe I also got to see Austin. He seemed a little sad and lonely. This is the first time he has really left Denton and I think it is hard for him not knowing everyone in town. In addition to not knowing many people, his ex-girlfriend is making his life hellish. She is super high drama and always picking fights with him. I am sure it is just because she misses him and wants his attention, but moving to Cali is the biggest thing Austin has ever done and I just wish she would be supportive of him rather than a drain on his experience.

Three weekends ago I went to see East of Eden at the Stanford theater with Mom and Dad on Friday and then Saturday I went to the city to Adam’s birthday. For Adam’s birthday dinner we went to House of Prime Rib and I ate myself stupid on delicious meat. Even the veggies there have bacon or some other meat product mixed in. It was all super delicious. I cannot remember what I did on Sunday. I think I worked.

Two weekends ago I was back in Tahoe, this time with Courtney, Gene, the kiddos and Gene’s brother Joe. We did lots of hiking, went river rafting and spent a day down by the beach. I really liked being up there with the kids. Having the kiddos up there makes the routine activates seem special again because for the kids these are unique and special experiences. Twice Derek asked if he could please come back in the winter because he really wants to see snow. It was so cute it made my heart ache, and of course I will make sure that he gets to come to Tahoe sometime this winter.

Tahoe is undergoing a chipmunk explosion this year. The current theory is that there are so many chipmunks because the winter was too mild and did not kill off enough of them. The little buggers are everywhere and have gotten so out of control that during one hike Courtney actually stepped on one. It used to be so exciting to see the chipmunks because they are cute and not that prevalent, and now there are so many people are actually walking on them.

This weekend was packed full of activities. Friday was Katie Smith’s birthday so I went up to SF to celebrate with her and a pack of random friends. We went to a speakeasy called Tradition, The Blue Light (where we went for your 21st birthday) and several other random bars. I did not get to eat dinner before going out so at 2AM I ate half a large pizza. It was so good. I pretty much ate nothing but junk food booze this weekend, so I might have to do so kind of detox this week.

Saturday I got home from SF around noon and then went to a BBQ/house warming/birthday party for a friend of friends. There I ate tasty sausages and a miscellaneous assortment of unhealthy snacks. After the BBQ I went to Courtney’s and we started watching a tv show called Game of Thrones. I read the books the tv show is based off of and I am really pleased because the show is true to the books and well acted. I doubt you would like the show because the general rule with Game of Thrones is “your favorite character dies,” and since you do not like shows with blood and death this would not be for you.

Yesterday I went to BodyPump in the morning and then an ice cream social at a friends house. These friends are extra nerdy and managed to make a Cold Stone style experience by buying granite flooring tiles from Home Depot and then sticking them on top of blocks of dry ice. Combine ice cream with tons of mixings & booze and boom!, you have an awesome ice cream social. I made two different ice cream concoctions. The first was vanilla ice cream with brandied cherries, chocolate covered pretzels and bourbon cream. The second was vanilla ice cream with raspberries, chocolate peanut butter cake and Bailey’s Irish Cream. Both creations were delicious. Yum.

When I got home from ice cream, Peanut got blasted by a skunk AGAIN! Stupid, stupid puppy. I gave her several baths but she still smells like road kill.

In the evening I went over to Courtney’s house and we ate pizza & beer for dinner and watched more Game of Thrones. It was extra good New York style pizza.

I really do need to do a detox because my food this weekend was: booze, half a pizza, sausages, beer, Champaign, ice cream and more pizza & beer. It is amazing I am not a million pounds.

Love & Miss You!!!


Parents Camping


I am an idiot 



On a boat!


On the Tahoe Gal


Happy people on the Gal


Awesome bunny from a magic show I saw in Tahoe

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Another Email To Katy [11 Jun 2012|10:52am]
Friday night I went out to La Fiesta with Country, Susan, Cathleen and Erin (another girl from high school). It was so delicious. After dinner we went back to Courtney’s house in Redwood City and watched the movie Dead Alive. It is a silly zombie movie and you might like it except for the gore. It doesn’t look at all real but there is a lot of it.

Saturday I went and got my hair cut & colored and then went on a pub crawl for a friend’s birthday. The woman who normally does my hair is on vacation so someone else did it and I am not as pleased. This woman cost more money and made my hair a lot lighter blond than I wanted. She did not even pretend to listen to what I was saying and just did whatever she felt like. I am fine with it, it is just hair and will grow back, but I was annoyed at paying more for someone who does less quality work. Hopefully next time the normal lady I go to will be back.

The birthday pub crawl was in SF, so I took the train up to the city. I like the train, I think it is relaxing. For pubs we went to The 21st Amendment (my favorite bar in SF), The Polo Grounds and Ozone. By the time we left Ozone a Giants game had ended and it was impossible to find space for a big group in any of the bars so we just went back to some dude’s house and drank there. The best part of the pub crawl was I met a girl named Katja Grosch who was very nice and one of those people you just click with. What was odd was she was sure she knew me from somewhere and I totally recognized her too, but we were never able to figure out how it was we knew one another. Do you recognize the name? She grew up in Chicago so I don’t know her from school or work and I cannot think how else I would have met her.

After boozing it up most of the afternoon we went to dinner at a place called Zare at Fly Trap. The food was Mediterranean style and OK but the dinner took forever. We had 7 o’clock reservations and I had plans to catch the 10:15 train home and I barely got to eat my main course. It was almost 9 when they finally served our appetizers and at 9:30 we were just getting our main courses. Since we were a large group they restaurant had arranged a fixed menu for us, so it is not like we were ordering lots of different things. It was still fun because the group was full of kind and interesting people but I would have liked to have eaten a little of the food without feeling super rushed. In the end I made my train so that it was all good.

Sunday was pretty dull. My friend Charity made by Mom & Dad’s because she will be house sitting for us and I needed to show her around. After we went to Celia’s for lunch. Yum Yum Yum. I had a very Mexican food themed weekend. I wish I could somehow bring La Fiesta and Celia’s and all your other favorite places to Texas for you.

From lunch I went to B&T. It is almost June 15th and we are going out of town, so dad and I need to get the estimates done. For dinner Mom & dad went to La Fiesta but I could not eat any more Mexican food, so instead I just chilled at home and ate leftovers. It was nice and relaxing.

So that is it for me. Let me know if there is anything else you want me to try and pick up and bring to you.

Love!!

Tracy
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Snow, Golf, Birthdays and Music [04 Jun 2012|03:18pm]
The last few weekends have been fun. For Memorial Day weekend I went to Tahoe with Mom & Dad plus Uncle Joe & Stacy. The plan was to do a lot of work around the house but the first several days we were up there it snowed and so we were unable to work. It snowed so much that we could make snow cream! When it finally stopped snowing Dad & Joe decided that there was just not enough time to get real house repairs accomplished so we ended up doing almost nothing productive the whole week. Dad was able to get a plumber to come to the house and work on the pipes, but the painting and other manual labor that we were going to do ourselves never got attempted.

Instead of working, we spent our time doing fun activities. There was hiking in the snow, snow cream, hiking not in the snow, eating delicious food, some shopping and I played golf for the very first time. It was Dad, Joe, Larry Travis and I. Like other sports, I was naturally horrible at golf but still found it to be a lot of fun. I like whacking the balls as hard as I can plus it is just relaxing to walk around outside in a pretty grassy area. The one good thing I can say about my golf game is that Travis told Dad and I that we were not the worst golfers he had ever played with. When he was on the high school golf team he had played with kids who had been playing for years who were way worse than us. Woohoo! That is what I call success.

Dad came home from Tahoe on Tuesday but Mom and I stayed an extra day so that she could clean the carpets. On the way home from Tahoe we stopped at the junk furniture store in Davis. I got a little bedside table at the furniture place. Normally I would not bother mentioning this stop, but the little bed side table ends up playing a role in this weekend’s activities as well.

Thursday was Dad’s birthday. Several months ago Dad had me purchase a Living Social deal for two rounds of golf for the price of one at the Blackberry Farms golf course in Cupertino. Blackberry Farms is really little and according to Joe much easier than the Brokeway golf course. Anyways, Dad and I wouldn’t be caught dead working on a birthday so we met Uncle Joe and Mike Rashkin for another game of golf. I have gone approximately 1,624 weeks without ever playing a game of golf and now I have squeezed in two games in one week. I think I played worse on my second game then I did the first one, however with a blatant system of cheating (i.e. take score and divide by three), I come up with the pretty excellent score of 27 for a 9 hole course.

Friday I actually put in a full day of work (I think it almost killed me). Dad had a poker game going on in the evening so I went out to dinner with Mom and then met Susan, Courtney, Brittany, Dora and a pack of Dora’s friends for karaoke at the Swinging Door. For dinner Mom & I went to Katana. It is a super excellent sushi place walking distance from my house in SV. Someday when you are actually back state-side I will take you there. It is one of the awesome sushi places that make up their own crazy roles. Yum Yum.

Karaoke was fun. My singing is actually worse than my golf game so it has been several days of extra fun epic failing on my part. Then there is Courtney & Dora, who are rock stars. My envy makes me adore and hate them all at the same time. Dora has such a good voice and natural stage prcense that I could see her singing sultry songs in classy night clubs. Because Dora and her pack of chicks were super hot, we scored free shots. This along with a Long Island Iced Tea and god knows what else led to Courtney getting plastered. It was wonderful. It has been a very long time since I have seen really really drunk Courtney. She is singing chatty fun. I got up to sing twice. First I sang These Boots Are Made For Walking which people seemed to actually enjoy and then I totally butchered Killing Me Softly. I was a little too drunk to pay attention to the music for Killing Me Softly so I taaaaanked. KaBoom!

The whole weekend was music themed for me. Karaoke was Friday and then on Saturday I went to an all day music festival at Shoreline with Courtney, Gene, Susan, Cathleen and Joe (Gene’s brother who I believe you have met before). The music festival was lots of fun and due to my religious application of SPF 110 sunscreen, I managed to avoid getting burned.

My two favorite bands at the concert were Neon Trees and Fun. I am not sure if you would be familiar with any of their songs because I believe they became popular after you left for Chile, but I am sure you will hear some of their tunes while we are in VEGAS!!!! Fun has good music and the lead singer is this spunky kid who never stops singing, talking to the audience and jumping around. While I think I like the songs of Fun better, I really enjoyed the show Neon Trees put on. I think they were actually my favorite. Everyone looked super 80’s, the lead singer transitioned between the songs with antic dotes that explained where the inspiration for the songs came from and the dude reminded me of Freddy Mercury. I would like to see either of the two bands in concert again.

Now onto Sunday which was actually a lot of fun but has left me feeling blue today. Yesterday was Celeste’s 3rd birthday party and Tom (Jason’s best friend) was there. I have not seen Tom since Jason said he wanted a divorce, and it was a lot harder than I expected. We didn’t discuss Jason, I should talk with Tom but that was not the appropriate setting, and instead I had to just make standard party chit chat like everything was normal. It was painful and at times awkward. After seeing Tom I was up most of the night unable to sleep and just thinking all about Jason. Finally this morning I broke a gift Jason gave me years ago and I just lost it. I ended up crying and have felt blue the rest of the day. Plus it doesn’t help that the weather is cold and gloomy. I need sunny weather to lift my spirits. I have found that the only thing making me happy today is the knowledge that I get to see you in less than two weeks. I am going to have dinner with Tom, his wife Kimloan and Courtney & Gene tomorrow, which I think is good because I love Tom and each time I see him it has to get easier.

Other than the weirdness with seeing Tom the party was tons of fun. I got to connect with a number of people I have not seen in years including Ravi who grew up across the street from us. He looks really good and is working at YouTube. Celeste was a lovely birthday girl. She is super girly and must have gone through 5 wardrobe changes throughout the day. My personal favorites were a neon green tutu that made her look super 80’s rocker and a purple princess dress which she wore with a little straw hat giving her the appearance that she was little bo peep. Too cute.

Also on Sunday I ended up painting the little bedside table I purchased in Davis. The table was originally an ugly reddish brown color. At some point I decided that the bedside table needed to be a bright shiny gold, so Mom & I went into her misc. crap closest in the laundry room and found her bottle of gold spray paint. I then proceeded to give the bedside table a ghetto paint job and it is now the shiny gold I envisioned. It came out surprising well and I am super happy with it. The ugly red-brown under coat actually gives the piece a pretty red tint in certain angles. I do not have a picture of the table right now but I will take one tonight and email it to you tomorrow.

So that is what I have been up to the past few weeks. Nothing epic but I have been having a lot of fun. I hope you and Evan have been doing well. I will go run all those errands you emailed me about this week but in exchange I want to see pictures from the crazy hat party you went to.

Snow Two Days Before Memorial Day


Courtney & Susan @ Swinging Door


Neon Trees
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LA, Maker Faire, Zombies & Cherries [21 May 2012|11:10am]
Each year I tell myself that I am not going to eat myself sick on cherries and each year I fail. This year has been no exception. I now have a stomach ache.

Two weekends ago was lots of fun. Mom & I went to a wedding in LA, and since we were already going to So. Cal we decided to make a mini vaycay out of it. We left on Thursday and drove to Santa Barbara where we spent Thursday night. When Katy went to college in Santa Barbara my family learned how awesome a city it is. There is the beach, sunshine, and lovely down town and the BEST bars and restaurants. Santa Barbara food selection is even better than Palo Alto’s.

For dinner my mom and I ate at The Palace which is an awesome Cajun place made even better by the fact that every half out the wait staff pass around song books and everyone sings. Also, if your drink happens to be empty during music time then they give you a small amount of refill for free so that you can toast with the waiters as they walk by. Cajun food, singing and a chocolate soufflé like Roy’s makes this my kind of place. Yum.

After dinner we went over to the study hall and hung out with Dan (katy’s old bar & boss when she was a bartender). It was good to talk with Dan again and hear how life in SB is going. He seems to be doing well. I tried to convince him to go visit Katy but he says he does not travel.

Oh, and before dinner I went to the consignment store on State Street and found the most awesome pair of shoes. They are never worn-totally new Cole Haan/Nike Airs and they are super lovely and comfortable all at the same time. When I was at PwC a lot of girls had these shoes and swore they were the most comfortable dress shoes of all time. I actually went to the Cole Haan store at Valleyfair to look at them but they were waaaaay too expensive, so I did not buy them. Now I have a completely unworn pair and only had to pay $40 for them. That is still pricy for consignment store clothes but since they were unworn (still had the cloth bag for the shoes) and the shoes retail for $250, I figured I was OK with the price.

Friday we left Santa Barbara early and drove to Pasadena for a pre-wedding luncheon at the Hunt Club. It was OK. I only knew one other girl there but I got to meet some nice people. The lunch was a pre-fixed Cobb Salad and tasted really good. From the lunch my mom and I went to check into our hotel and then rushed to the La Brea tar pits.

The tar pits were something I had always wanted to see but never made it to. Basically, down town LA is built on one of the worlds largest tarpits and back when LA was nothing more than desert and swampland prehistoric creatures would get trapped in the back ooze. Because animals pick on the weak, and those stuck in tar are seen as weak, one trapped animal would lead to lots of trapped animals and then the whole lot of them would sink into the tar where their bones were perfectly preserved. The museum with the bones is neat and very educational, but my favorite part was going out and watching the actual tar. It makes beautiful glistening methane gas bubbles which I found very relaxing to watch form and then pop.

Friday night was low key. Mom and I went and grabbed Mexican food from a place near our hotel and then rented the movie The Heist from the in-room movie system. The in-room movie system was probably the only thing about our hotel that did not suck. We stayed at the Westin in Pasadena and since it is a Westin and those are generally nice, we had pretty high hope. It did not live up to our expectations. The hotel was like a mediocre business hotel, the pool was small and always shaded, the furniture was too big for the oddly designed room so you could hardly use the closet because my bed was in the way and the shower was so low that the showerhead only came to my chest level. One of the few things that really bothers me is when showerheads are put so low that someone only 6 feet can’t stand under them! I may be tall for a chick but I am like an average sized dude and how stupid must you be to design a shower where about half the guys would not be able to fit under it!?!?!? I can generally ignore almost anything but this is one of the things that just drives me nuts! In short, I really disliked the Westin Pasadena. I think I will write up and yelp review for it. Can you give negative stars on yelp?

Sunday was the wedding. The ceremony was in a church and then reception in a park. It was pretty but nothing spectacular. Considering how rich Chris’ family is I was kind of hoping for more of a wedding spectacle. Instead they kept it simple and classy. WTF?

The best part of the wedding was Nell’s dress. She wore her paternal grandmother’s wedding dress and it fit her so well that not a stitch had to be added to make it fit. The only thing they had to do was clean the dress, which ended up taking 6 months because the box the dress was stored in stained it all up. Apparently the first time Nell tried it on her dad saw her in it and started to cry, even though the dress was stained to hell.

The reception had an open bar, so that was great, but not enough heat lamps so I ended up getting cold and leaving a little on the early side.

Sunday was Mother’s Day and Chris’ grandmother had planned a fancy brunch at her mansion. This was perfect because otherwise I might have had to take Mom to brunch at the hotel and that was like $50 a person, so instead I got something much nicer and free. Score.

From Pasadena mom and I drove to Anaheim and spent the afternoon at the hotel pool. Then I drove back to LA and met up with my buddy Matt. He had graduated from USC on Thursday so I wanted to buy him a drink. We had a few beers and then he took me to see the giant purple church of Scientology and Jumbo’s Clown Room. Jumbo’s is this bar/strip club. The dancers and fun because they are the talented kind who can do the pole tricks, but the best part is the other audience members. There were tons of hipsters, a guy sporting an eye patch and a legit plushy! The plushy made the girls talk to a big stuffed rabbit before he would give them a dollar and one girl got denied her dollar because the rabbit was not pleased. I loved Jumbo’s.

Monday mom and I went to Disneyland. As school is not out yet and it was Monday there were not too many people in the park. There were some, I think there are always some people in Disneyland, but we never waited in line more than 30 minutes. I was really digging the Splash Mountain ride. There is something about fluffy animatronic bunnies and other woodland critters singing Zip-a-Dee Doo Dah that speaks to me.

Tuesday mom and I drove home. The most notable part of the day was we ate at Carletos in SB. Yum yum yum.

This weekend was fun but not super exciting. Friday I want to the standard girls night that Susan has. We gossiped, danced around to music and made mojitos. We were supposed to try and make dresses but that did not even come close to happening. I was OK with this though because I do not know how to sew and mojitos are more fun.

Saturday Mom spent getting ready for a fancy dinner party so to get out of her way I went on a long walk with the puppies and then to BodyPump. My ass cheeks are now sore. We also spent awhile talking with you which was nice. I miss you and can’t wait to see you in June!!

In the evening I invited myself over to Courtney & Gene’s house because I did not want to hang out during mom’s dinner party. I am OK with being the sad, 31 year old divorcee who lives at home with her parents most of the time, but I am not OK with being the sad 31 year old divorcee who lives at home with her parents and has so little going on on a Saturday night that she has to crash her parent’s parties. I am just not going to be that person.

For dinner we got Chinese and spent the first part of the night singing karaoke and playing with the kids. Once the kiddos went to bed the three of us watched Dead Alive. It is a super gory and campy zombie movie. You would hate it as it bills itself as the most gory movie of all time. While the movie is gross it is not SUPER bad because it is so ridiculous and the gore is very fake looking. The premise is a rat monkey from Africa bites this evil woman who is an over protective mother. Her son is then forced to take care of her and all the other zombies that are eventually created. Even the baby troll looking zombie which is the product of two zombies getting it on. It is a funny and strange movie.

Sunday I went to church with mom because Trinity was doing the festival of music. I think this is the first time I have been to that church in about a decade. I went a few times when visiting Pinky & Stan in Florida, but never at home. I actually enjoyed church it because there was no sermon or preaching, instead it was almost entirely the choir singing and the bell choir playing. The priest read a few passages from the bible but all the passages tied into what was being sung, so it actually added to the music. My favorite part of the bell choir. I would just look out the windows watching the streets sway in the slight wind and absorb the music.

After church mom, dad and I went to El Paso Café for lunch and then dad and I went to Maker Faire in San Mateo. I believe I told you about Maker Faire when I went a few years ago. It is where all kinds of craft and engineering nerds display their crafty and nerdy creations. I think dad enjoyed himself since we got to see lots of robots and a radio controlled boat war where the boats shot beebees and actually sank each other.

Tar


Mom & Mammoth


Me & Bones


I am a dork in Pasadena as well as the Bay Area
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I won $50!! [07 May 2012|12:58pm]
Mom got Cassie shaved. The poor dog was super matted and we really had no choice. She now looks like a rodent with a giant puppy dog head. It is not a good look for her.





I got a cold and was sick last week. It sucked. I actually got sick last weekend and ended up missing work for a few days. It was a pretty miserable cold but I was over everything except for the cough in time to have fun this weekend.

My weekend was pretty packed full of fun activities. On Friday Cathleen, Courtney, Dora, Brittney and I went out for sushi dinner and karaoke. We went to a sushi place in San Mateo which I believe I have told you about because of the massive amount of food you get for really cheap. Our bill for 7 giant rolls and sake bombing for 5 people before tip but including tax was only $75. You can spend half that much on one person alone eating and doing sake bombs at some places. Plus the rolls were the interesting kind with lots of spices and sauce. Yum yum.

After dinner we went to a bar called The Swinging Door to sing karaoke. The Swinging Door is a slightly intimidating karaoke bar because everyone besides myself and a handful of other people are really good. It is hard because you are always following someone who just really rocked a song and since I am tone deaf and screechy, my lousy voice is always emphasized by the comparison with the awesome people who go before me. I sang Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da by the Beatles and These Boots Were Made For Walking by Nancy Sinatra. It was scary but fun at the same time.

I cannot remember what everyone else sang but I know Courtney and Cathleen did a duet of I Touch Myself, and Dora, who has a wonderful voice and great stage presence, did Someone Like You by Adele. I don’t know how much karaoke Dora has done in the past but I know she has been studying music and you can see the difference in confidence and style in her performance that is not there in most other people’s songs, even those people who are good singers.

Cathleen Getting Into 'I Touch Myself'


Saturday was the Kentucky Derby so Uncle Joe & Stacy came over and mom made a southern fried feast. It was a good day of yummy food, mint juleps and good friends, and made extra awesome because I won $50 for picking the winning horse. I loose at all other kinds of gambling but I have traditionally been pretty lucky with horse racing. My secret? I always choose the horse with the most awesome or dirty sounding name. The derby winner was ‘I’ll Have Another’ which invokes images of beer, so I had to pick it. Susan was not around for the horse race, but she eventually joined us for dinner.



Tomorrow is Cathleen’s birthday so to celebrate she rented a limo and took a bunch of friends up to Napa for wine tasting. We ended up going to three wineries: V. Sattui Winery, Mumm and another that had changed names recently so I was never sure what it was actually called. The wine tasting was fun but I really prefer beer and I started to get burned out on wine after the first tasting house. I think one of the problems was I was just not that fond of any of the wines we tried. Mumm is fun because it is champagne but I do not have a refined pallet and it all tastes pretty much the same to me.

At the last winery Cathleen got a cigar and it came with a whole bunch of strike anywhere matches. These matches were a lot of fun to play with and she looked extra suave lighting a match by striking it against the stone wall behind her.

The best part of the whole wine day was of course the people. Cathleen has become friends with Courtney and my buddy Noah, so over half the people in the limo were my friends. The other folks were all old friends of Cathleen’s and pretty awesome people. One girl is starting a gluten free bakery, and while I do not understand the appeal behind the whole gluten free trend, it was still interesting to hear her and her husband talk about the process of starting a business.

This week I am only working Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and then on Thursday mom and I go to LA for Nell’s wedding. It should be a lot of fun. We are going to spend one night in SB, go to the La Breha tar pits, go to fancy brunches at the homes of super rich people, go to Disneyland and generally eat and drink ourselves stupid over 5 days. Woohoo!

Me @ Winery (stolen from Courtney)


Distracted Friends @ Winery (photo stolen from Noah)


Cathleen Looking Like A Photo From A Cigar Magazine (stolen from Noah)


More Awesome Cigar Photos (stolen from Noah)
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Sometimes I Write Too Much To My Sister [23 Apr 2012|12:16pm]
I had a great weekend and I have so much to tell you about that this is going to be a loooooooong email I apologize in advance.

Friday night Susan had her normal girls knitting thing where we all get around and talk and drink and almost never do any knitting. Starting around Wednesday or Thursday, the weather got really wonderful and Friday was no exception. In order to take advantage of the beautiful day we started the evening by getting drinks at a bar in down town SV. The plan was to sit outside but all the outside seating was taken so we just ended up at a pub called Lilly Macs. I had an orange Julius which was dangerous because I could not taste the alcohol at all.

After the bar we walked back to my house/Susan’s place for dinner. Susan made us some delicious chicken enchiladas covered in a white cheesy sauce. They tasted a lot like Mom’s Baby Barf but with chicken. The enchiladas were really good. Susan got the recipe off of a new website called Pinterest.com. I dunno if Pinterest has made it to South America yet, but it is the new big thing here. I do not have an account but the idea is that you collect images (your own photos or other images you find) and you share them on a board. I want Pinterest to remain popular because there is a slim chance I might get B&T work out at the company. The husband of a friend of mine works out there and the company is small and has shot up like a weed, so they are just starting to need financial and other advisors. I doubt anything will actually come of it, but there is a slim chance I could win some kind of work. The office is in down town MV right near my house, so it would be awesome if I could get a project out there. I could maybe even bike it is that close.

Sorry about the Pinterest tangent. Back to my epic weekend. So the plan was for Susan to make dinner and then we would all watch a movie. While delicious dinner and dessert was made we never got around to watching the movie because we spent the whole time talking. It is so much fun to just sit around and chat with girls. Erin, a girl I went to high school with, is a seventh grade teacher and she started telling us about all the horrible sex terms that her seventh graders know. There were terms I am familiar with like snowballing, but there were other things that I never ever knew existed like “blue waffeling.” Because none of us wanted to be old and out of the sex slang loop, we spent a portion of the evening looking up the seventh-grader’s sex terms on the internet. It was educational in that horrible, I never needed to know that kind of way. My Friday was spent drinking, eating, gossiping with girls and looking up disturbing sexual images that today’s seventhgraders know of but adults have no clue on. It was a lot of fun and I am pretty sure that our Google searches will get Susan’s computer registered on some very strange government watch lists.

The grass at my house is out of control. I was there last week and at some points I think it is about 4 feet tall and thick as a jungle. The grass in the front was not too long, thank goodness, but the grass in back was just insane. Going by the house on Friday reminded me about the horrible state of the grass so first thing Saturday morning Mom and I went over to the house to mow my lawn. The idea was to mow the front yard, back yard and all the weeds. At 10 it was already getting hot so we decided to start with the back yard as the front yard is in the shade and we thought it would be good to save that for last. It took an hour and a half just to mow down my back patch of grass. At times the lawnmower got so tired it started smoking. I would not have been able to get the back yard done without Mom’s help. She took an electric hedge trimmer and cut down the grass to where it was only a foot or two off the ground and then I went through with the mower and took it down the rest of the way. Since it took so long to do just the back part we decided to only do the back grass and the front lawn. The front lawn was actually pretty quick, it was just the mower was shot by then. At least the lawn looks like someone cares now. Jason does not care what the neighbors think so he will not help out with the lawn, but I hope to be back in the house in the next month or so, and once I am living there again the lawn will be easier for me to maintain.

After yard work I rushed home, took a quick shower and packed up an overnight bag. Cathleen came by to grab me and we then drove up to the city. There was a little drama with the hotel we booked but eventually we got it sorted out and could start our fun times in SF! The first thing we needed was drinks so we walked over to the Gold Dust off of Union Square. The Gold Dust is that old style saloon which I think we went to one time when we were up at Union Square doing Christmas shopping. The place has a fun atmosphere and it is sad because they have lost their lease and are going to have to shut down. It makes me sad when places with so much atmosphere shut down. Especially ones like the Gold Dust which has been around forever.

After the Gold Dust we went over to Dolorus Park where we met up with Adam and his boyfriend Damian. I had never met Damian even though he and Adam have been going out for a year + now. Damian is SUPER cute. He looks like my friend Boyar and he adores Adam, which is exactly what Adam deserves. Adam was very sad for a long time because he has so much love to give and had no one to give it to. Adam told me that they expect to get engaged soon and want to start looking for a suraget so they can start a family. I am so very very very happy for Adam.

Dolorus Park was great. The sun was out, you could see the entire city and it was nice and warm. The weather this weekend was perfect. We lounged around on the Gay Beach portion of the park drinking rum & guava juice and everyone but me got a nice base tan. I put on tons of sunscreen and did not change color. Hurrah!

Around 5 we all disbanded because we needed to get ready for dinner. Cathleen and I went back to the hotel, took quickie naps and showered. It was Damian’s birthday so for dinner we went to Asia SF, which is one of the more famous tranie shows. The food is surprisingly tasty and the tranies are lovely. My favorite act was the last one where a lady dressed up like wonder woman and danced around pretending to fight off bad guys or aliens, not really sure which. I was with a group of 11 people where Cathleen and I were the only two straight ones and out of the entire dinner party, I was the only one who had ever been to Asia SF before. Adam seemed to get a kick out of the rest of the party having to ask me what to wear, how the food worked, what was good, what the various acts would be like, etc.

My favorite dish at dinner was this bok choy sautéed in a garlic lemon sauce. OMG sooooo yummy. I also liked the ribs which were made with a tangy orange sauce. Yum yum yum.

After dinner & the show we went to The Lookout which is a bar with a great view of the Castro. Adam’s friends got to do what they do best, drink, make cat calls and judge the people on the street below them. His friends were so stereotypical it was funny. They accused each other of being princesses, talked about clothes and shoes, made catty judging comments about those around them. I had a whole lot of fun getting to know all of them.

Adam has been working on a project in New York so he was three hours ahead of everyone and got tired around midnight. Being in the sun all day wore me out too so we all called it an early night and went back to the hotel around 1. I did not sleep well. I have been having nightmares. My subconscious is not very subtle and I have dreams where Jason and I get separated in a large crowd and I freak out because I cannot find him, or I am talking with Jason on the edge of a very busy street and he is going to walk across the street and I want to stop him because he will get hit by a car but I he won’t listen and crosses any ways. I am tired of having these nightmares but I expect I will be plagued with them for a while.

Sunday morning Cathleen and I got up, showered and met Adam, Damian and others for at Lime for brunch. It was a total Sunday Funday. Bottomless mimosas were only $11, the restaurant had a dejay, people were taking all kinds of shots and everyone was there for a good time. It was a great spot for people watching since all different types showed up for brunching. At brunch I really got to know Damian. He lived in Rio at one time building a floating hospital that could be taken up rivers to little villages to deliver medical care and he now works in the tax department of Deloitte in SF. Getting to talk with Damian solidified how much I like him and how happy I am for Adam.

After breakfast I was supposed to go join Diana, John and others at the beach to celebrate John’s birthday. However, at the last minute they changed the plans because the coast side of SF was all fogged in, but the bay side was clear. Instead they told everyone to meet at Dolorus Park. It was a very Dolorus Park weekend for me. Diana had set up a bunch of blankets and coolers in the middle of the park and we spent the afternoon just chilling. I was worried I might feel awkward not really knowing anyone but Diana, but that was not the case. Everyone who showed up was kind and welcoming and I love sitting around in the sunshine getting to know new people. Nothing super memorable happened while we were at the park, it was just a nice and relaxing afternoon.

When the weather started to cool down late in the afternoon everyone else headed to Diana’s house and I just caught the train home. It had been a long couple of days with lots of drinking and sunshine and I wanted to get home and rehydrate and rest my skin. I never got a sunburn but just being in the sun that much makes my skin dry and unhappy.

For dinner mom, dad and I went to La Fiesta!!! I got a chicken enchilada and rice. So goooooood. The green sauce was extra hot so my rehydration efforts were doubled with drinking extra water to try and cool off my tongue.

Now for the only bad part of the last few days. Thursday, Friday and Sunday nights I have found bugs crawling on me when I am in bed. They are ugly flat little things. The first night I did not think much of it, but they kept showing up. It has not been tons of bugs, just like one a night. Enough to make me check my room but not enough so that I will not sleep in my bed. Turns out the bugs are ticks that Cassie and Peanut got when we were at the bay lands. Ew! Ew! Ew! Ticks have been sleeping with me in my bed and our poor tiny doggies are getting tormented by vicious nasty bloodsuckers! Mom and I are going to bug bomb my room, we are washing all the sheets, vacuuming the floor and hopefully all of this will kill the damn things.

So that was my weekend. It was a lot of fun and because I did so much, it felt extra long. I hope you and Evan had a great time in Santa Cruz. I want to hear all about it.


San Fran



@ Gold Dust


Damian Getting Birthday Love From A Lovely Lady

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Tax Season is OVER!! [19 Apr 2012|01:34pm]
Yay! Tax season is over! I made it. Not that it was really all that hard, even working busy season hours for Blum & Tripp I still feel like I am on vacation. I think the living at home, having mom make my dinners and do my laundry really contributes to the feeling that I have been coasting through life the last two months.

Now that busy season is over it is time for me to get busy on my #1 task, FIND NEW CLIENTS! I have a couple ideas, I am going to put my information up on alumni websites for San Jose State, Davis and Susan agreed to put it on Cornell. Eric has gotten several new clients from being listed on the Cornell website, so I hope to score the same kind of thing. Once I figure out how this works I might try and sucker Katy into putting me on UCSB and maybe even get Evan to list us on Stanford. If the Stanford has an alumni recommendation site it might be extra useful since they will be local.

I plan to put out B&T information on these sites, attend local business meetings & PwC alumni events and then go hang out at the bars in Palo Alto and up by Sandhill trying to meet VC and other people. I believe the key to new clients is just going out and meeting people. Lets hope I can pull this off.

Last weekend was pretty boring, but I have been having a great time since Monday. Monday night Bobby and I went to a Sharks play-off game. The Sharks lost, but they made a huge comeback push in the last 5 minutes and almost tied it up within the last 16 seconds. It was a lot of fun.

Tuesday was Happy Tax Day so I started drinking at noon. Dad and I went to the burger place Fredrick’s (near mom’s church) and I got a nice cold beer with lunch. Then I kept up the beer drinking during the day, went to trivia and did more beer drinking, and finally ended the night at a bar called Paul & Eddie’s in Cupertino. I even got Kyle to join me at trivia this week. He is a nice kid and I have been trying to invite him out. He is pretty smart too, knew a lot of the trivia answers. I was my typically worthless self and knew the answer to one question. Every week I am good for one question.

Yesterday I took the day off of work. I spent the morning getting stuff accomplished, I went to the doctor, took Peanut to the vet to get her stiches out, other misc crap. In the afternoon mom and I went to Anthropology (there was lots of cute stuff be we did not buy anything) and then we went for a walk in the bay lands. It was a lovely day and I really enjoyed our bay lands walk.

This weekend should be fun. I am going to a birthday party in SF Saturday night, going to spend the night in a hotel and then go to John’s (Diana’s boyfriend) birthday at the beach on Sunday. The birthday Saturday is for Damian, who is the boyfriend of my buddy Adam from PwC. They are super cute together and are going to get married! I have never been to a gay wedding before so I totally want to go. Adam is thinking they will get married in Hawaii, which is awesome because then I get to go to Hawaii.

Photo From Baylands

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Easter [11 Apr 2012|10:30am]
Sunday was Easter and as usual I scored a crap ton of bunny themed items. My favorite is a little pink bunny made out of that rose stone from Argentina and the stone bunny with carrot that Katy gave me. I have named the bunny Katy gave me Nibbles since I can imagine him taking tiny nibbles out of the end of the carrot. The other bunnies in the picture are a vintage napkin ring made out of an early form of plastic called bake-lite, a stone bunny that I think mom said she got from the Chile desert the 'rents & Katy went to before I joined them in Chile and a truly horrible pink bunny vase that has odd gold growths coming out of it's head, body and butt. The vase is by far the most unique bunny I have received in a long time.




Easter dinner was fun. It was mom, dad and I and then Susan and my friend Cathleen came over. We had shrimp cocktail, prime rib and Yorkshire pudding. Mom also made a carrot cake for dessert/in honor of Ben Bunny. It was all delicious. It was really nice of mom to let me invite my friends over, especially Cathleen who does not have family in the area.

Dad and I have been working a lot (well a lot for Blum & Tripp) the past week. It is crunch time and we are hunkered down and trying to get all these returns out the door. However, even with our "working a lot" I still feel like I am on vacation because it is nothing compared to PwC. I got my MST because I actually liked tax but working for PwC made me forget that. I enjoy work again and remember why I went into this. It is a good feeling.

Once we get through the next week my focus is going to shift to figuring out how to save my house. I have talked with a lawyer who will prepare the paperwork for Jason to quick claim the house to me/sell it to dad. Once Jason is off the house I then need to refinance my mortgage and hopefully get a lower rate. The rate for the current mortgage isn't bad, but since they only looked at Jason's crap credit score and not my good one, the rate we got was not great. Whatever I get I know that I am going to be pretty poor for a while. Still I love my house and it is worth the struggle.

Tonight Mom and I have puppy class. It is the last puppy class of the session and they have a graduation for the dogs. Each dog has to pass a test and then they get a diploma saying they completed puppy school. Peanut still hates me at the moment because she is having to wear the cone of shame (my fault) and it is raining and she gets wet when she goes outside (also my fault). With her being so bitter at me I do not know if she will be willing to perform in puppy class. That dog is damn stubborn.

I need to get back to work now. Tax returns are calling. I leave you with photos of mom and dad.

Mom & Peanut in The Cone of Shame!!



Dad Eating Cake

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Maybe I Will Start Using This Again [02 Apr 2012|02:39pm]
I never post to this journal because I never have the time to write about all the things going on in my life. Since my last entry I have gone to Chile & Argentina, Disneyland, and Las Vegas, quit my horrible job at PwC, got shit-canned by my husband, went to Carnival in Rio, started working at B&T again (with the idea of eventually taking over) and spend almost every weekend doing fun and exciting things. Though I do not have time to write in my journal, I do write my sister Katy almost every week about what has been going on in my life. Today I realized that instead of writing all new entries to this journal, I should just pick & choose parts of the emails I send to Katy to create a record.

This is my first attempt at editing my email to Kates....


I had a good weekend. On Friday I went to a place called Sky High with Susan, Robert and Courtney. Sky High has giant Giant GIANT trampolines. There are three areas. The first is nothing but a huge trampoline where tons of people bounce around. Even the walls are trampoline, so you can run into them and fly off. The second area is a long and skinny runway trampoline with a pool of foam blocks at the end you can leap into. The third, and best area, is a huge dodgeball court with trampoline as the floor. It was a lot of fun and good exercise. It seemed like something Evan would enjoy since you can jump and flip off of things and bounce off the walls. Next time Katy & Evan are in town I want to take them there.

On Saturday I went with Diana, Narissa, Maura and Lauren on the African safari. It was neat but it rained the entire time, so we were cold. I think it would be more fun in the summer when it is dry and warm. We got to see a baby zebra that was only a few days old, super ugly wilda beasts and all these other lovely animals. There were tiny antelope that were maybe a pound or two bigger than Cassie and Peanut. They are like purse dogs but deer. If you could domesticate them I bet they would be a huge pet success.

After the safari we went and got lunch and then napped a little at the hotel. When we were good and rested we went to a wine bar with a lovely view of the town square. We shared a bottle of wine and sat around and talked for a long time. All girls seem very happy and successful. Sure they had their moans and groans, but overall they are happy with their jobs and their boyfriends, so I think that is a good sign. Maura is going to Hawaii this month, Diana is starting to do some side work on her own (mostly helping John who has his own company now too), and Narissa glows every time she talks about the kids she works with. Everyone misses Katy and we can't wait to see her in Vegas!!!! June can not come too soon.

After the wine bar we went to a seafood restaurant and everything we ordered was wonderful!!! We ordered a ton of food too, so everything being delicious was an achievement. We even ordered three kinds of dessert: a warm chocolate cake with ice cream, creme brulee and a banana split. Mmmm.... It makes me hungry just thinking about all the good food. I think Maura took pictures of the food so maybe they will end up on facebook.

After dinner we just went back to the room, watched some crummy tv and went to bed. I think being wet and cold most of the day made us more tired than we would normally be. On Sunday we got up, got some coffee and then headed home. Sunday was Joey's birthday so Diana was coming all the way to Palo Alto, so she dropped me off at Dad's office. I worked Sunday afternoon and then Mom, Dad and I went to Armadillo Willie's for dinner. Yum yum yum. So much good food this weekend.

Since I was going out town Saturday night I let Jason take Peanut for a few days. I miss her but I hope she and Jason and enjoying their time together. I was only gone one night but I am letting him keep Peanut until Tuesday. I miss her a lot but I know seeing Jason will make Peanut happy.

I took Peanut to the vet on Friday because she has developed a bump/wart type thing on her side. The vet thinks it is a cyst which has to be surgically removed. She is scheduled for surgery on Friday. I know she will be fine but I am still worried. Friday night I plan to stay home, watch movies and snuggle my recovering puppy.



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Peanut [03 Oct 2011|01:34pm]
Also, because I have not posted a picture of her recently, here is Peanut!

She has bed-head.

From Peanut - 2011
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Seascape [03 Oct 2011|01:29pm]
Several months ago my mom won a weekend at a resort in Seascape, CA. Seascape is a tiny resort community between Santa Cruz and Monterey. The resort could have use a remodel, it has the 70/80's feel to it, but we paid $20 for four nights, so we cannot really complain.
While at Seascape we took walks along the beach, went to the Monterey Bay Aquarium, ate tons of delicious food, drank beer while hanging out by the hot tub, went apple picking and had a bon fire.

My favourite part of the mini vacation was the aquarium. The Monterey Bay Aquarium is a leader in aquatic research and the first aquarium in the world to successfully keep a great white shark. The general rule is they keep the shark until it stops taking food, it starts eating its roommates, or it gets too big. The current shark is a male, less than a year old, and he is about 4 1/2 feet long. We got to see the feeding of the shark. The aquarium tracks the amount of food the shark eats very carefully, and it was awesome to see the power and fierceness in the way it consumed the hunks of meat they were giving it. The feeding of the shark is so neat that even the aquarium workers gather to watch the feeding.

After the feeding, while everyone was still gathered around, the great white shark went and bit the giant sun fish. The shark biting his roommate caused a huge reaction, even amongst the aquarium workers. It was not an innocent thing, the sun fish was nowhere near the shark and was just minding his own business. Then out of nowhere the shark makes a bee line for the giant sun fish and chomps down on its bottom fin. I heard the lead shark guy talking to one of the aquarium workers, and this has not happened with this particular great white before, and it looks like it might be time to move sharkie back out into the wild.

Below are some photos from my adventures in Seascape.

Mom & Dad On The Beach
From Seascape - Sept 2011


Jellies
From Seascape - Sept 2011


Great White Shark
From Seascape - Sept 2011


Dad & I - We Are Awesome
From Seascape - Sept 2011


Picking Apples For Fried Pies (my mom is a sucker and agreed to make fried pies after my dad and I nagged her for two days. We win)
From Seascape - Sept 2011
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