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Thursday, July 28, 2011

Seven Randoms

Jess at From the Bayou to the Swamp tagged me in this post. Jess is one of those weird people who runs in ugly Louisiana summer heat. She obviously needs her head checked.
By the way, she's also a respiratory therapist, which means she deals with phlegm on a regular basis. Brave lady. Just the sound of people clearing their throats makes me throw up a little.
So, seven random things about me? Here goes!
1. I've never dyed my hair or been to a hairdresser. I cut my own hair, even when I went short last year.

I can't fathom paying someone else to do it, it just gives me the willies.
2. I taught myself to read when I was three. Three of my little brothers also taught themselves. That's what happens when you have more books than toys.
3.  Although I chose pharmacy for a career, I am much more right-brained than mathematical. I went to school on an art scholarship and I've made and sold jewelry for years. My favorite things are reading, drawing, poetry, dance, you know - that stuff. I detest math. Consider yourself forewarned if you ever come to my pharmacy.
4. I was homeschooled my entire life, except my parents do this slightly illegal, slightly unethical, slightly questionable thing called "unschooling", which is exactly what is sounds like. Consequently, I did not graduate from high school. Nor did I graduate from college. My first graduation from anything was with my pharmacy doctorate.
5. I have brachydactyly d,  a genetic condition that gives me short, curly, stubby thumbs. They are so short that I can't really play the piano. I mean, I can't play the piano anyway because it requires too much musical talent. But even if I had the talent I don't have the necessary thumb length anyway. Megan Fox has a mild form of this.
Poor little deformed thumbs.
6. I am always cold. Always.
7. I met my hubby online...on Friendster! For you youngsters out there, Friendster predated Myspace.

Now if those weren't random, what is?!
Here's the part where I'm supposed to tag more people but I'm too lame to do that. Soooory!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Something interesting is in that corner.

Deep South Runner clued me in that yes, you can download Facebook photos. Obviously this technology is too much for me. I'm like those old people who can receive texts but don't know how to reply.

So here's the very wet, very rainy picture from the Rivershack Race. I have no idea what I'm looking at. Nor did I realize they were taking pictures. Obviously everyone else (who also looks much drier, how is that possible?) knows, because the are all posing. At least one gal has pizza and a beer with her, that makes me feel less weird.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Rivershack Run 2-mile

Well, I'm officially a bad blogger. This weekend I had my brother over from Pennsylvania (sleeping on my couch) and my the rest of my local family over for brunch, and I ran a fun race - and I have zero photos to show for it. I'm a wretch. I'm sorry.
But I snapped a belated picture of this:

The race I ran was the Rivershack 2-mile race, and these were the awards - trivets! Cute idea. Randomly, my brother (who was in town for a wedding) and a friend had had a lively debate all day about what exactly a trivet was (after discussing wedding gifts) and I was able to put their minds at ease by showing them mine. Yeah, I said it was random.
Anywho, Saturday morning I ran close to eleven miles at a pretty fast pace (for me, grain of salt here please) - 7:34s. Then that night we decided to run to the start of the race, since it was only 3.5 miles. So when I arrived at the race my legs weren't exactly fresh. Good thing it was just 2 miles!
It was raining for the race and actually it had rained all day. This cooled things down a little, but still didn't help my pace. I simply can't wrap my head around short distances. The race was fine, I kept a pretty even pace, I only slipped once (wet grass up the side of the levee!), my legs only felt mildly wobbly, and I finished 8th overall. But you know, I finished with too much left in the tank. For once I just want to run a short race and finish exhausted, spent, gasping for breath. I know these short distances are not my "thing" but I am annoyed that I under-perform in them!
I ended up with a 13:30 and a 2nd place age group finish, which earned me a trivet. I would show you a lovely race photo of me with the other female winners, everyone smiling in the camera but me (I don't know what I'm looking at, but it's over my right shoulder), except Facebook doesn't let you copy photos anymore. Losers.
After the race, there was pizza, red beans, beer, live music and fireworks! What! Pretty sweet for a 2-miler! Luckily for me, we ran into some friends at the after party and they offered us a ride back. I wouldn't have minded running back home but running with a trivet sounds pretty awkward.
Photos you may have liked to see:
- Group family photo
- Fireworks after the race
- Action race shot, courtesy of the hubby
- Picture of my glamorous brunch menu
Pictures you don't care about that I actually took:
- A trivet
Sorry guys.

Monday, July 25, 2011

You know you live in New Orleans when... come home from your run carrying all of this:
Reverse carb loading?

The owner of a bar down the street stopped me a few blocks from my house and asked me if I wanted some French bread. "My poboy guy delivered too much," he explained, so I walked the rest of the way home holding two loaves at arm's length to avoid sweat contamination.
You have to love New Orleans sometimes.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Foody Friday: Flourless chocolate walnut cookies

Prepare to swoon. A rich, fudgey cookie with just 6 ingredients and almost no work at all.

3 cups powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups walnut halves (throw them on a cookie sheet and toast them for a few minutes, then break them up a little before adding them to dough)
1 tablespoon (not teaspoon) vanilla extract
4 egg whites, lightly whisked in a little bowl or cup

Preheat oven to 350 F.
Mix dry ingredients. Add walnuts. At this point I add my secret ingredient - a dash of black pepper. It brings out the chocolate taste.
Add vanilla then add about half the egg whites and start mixing. As you mix the walnuts will start breaking up some more, which is fine. Continue to add egg white, a little at a time, until you have a cookie dough consistency. You may need all the egg whites; you may not. It depends on the size of the eggs you use and the humidity that day.
Prepare cookie sheets with parchment paper or foil and grease well. Drop mounds of cookie dough onto sheets. You should get 24 - 32 cookies.
Bake at 350 F for about 15 minutes. Let cool a little before trying to remove - they are very soft and moist at first.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Date night! Dressing up in hot weather

Last week our date night was to Mike's on the Avenue. We had a fantastic Groupon: an appetizer, 2 salads, 2 entrees, 2 drinks, and a dessert for $59. Hard to beat! Mike's is Asian fusion, and since I love anything Asian, I was in love. I especially enjoyed the Korean barbequed oysters - the flavors were a perfection of sweet and spicy - and my cocktail. I had a ginger martini, and now I'm pondering how to recreate it at home.
For hot and humid New Orleans nights, I have a few tricks for dressing up.
Hubby refused to make a normal face.
 For this warm evening, I chose a thin cotton camisole - very cool - with a high-waisted skirt. The skirt actually is a regular pencil skirt, but I belted it higher. It kind of drooped over the top of the belt, but oh well. I love the nautical belt: it's Dior, and I got it for $1 at a thrift store. Awesome!
To compliment the natural D-rings on the belt, I wore cork-heeled nude pumps. They are open-work leather and peep-toe, so my feet were cool, too!
Obviously in this weather, your hair has to go up. I decided to go WAY up, and did a high bun. I didn't go too tight, as I didn't want to look too ballerina (the camisole and skirt already looked like I was ready for exercises at the barre).
No hair hot on that neck!
 In this picture you can see how I do a quick bun that stays put: I do a high ponytail, then wrap my hair and secure with hair sticks. I have two 4" bone hair sticks that I wear all the time.
See the little chopsticks poking out? (Kind of hard to see since they're black) They hold your hair like nothing else! Try them and you'll never use a bobby pin again!
Make-up matters, too. I don't wear a lot of make-up to begin with, but in hot weather make-up just tends to look ugly fast. Because of that, I stay pretty light with the make-up in the summer. In this case I just wore under eye concealer (mandatory at all times with my dark circles!) and some mascara. I could have used a little blush but I dropped my compact and broke it a few months ago and never got around to replacing it. In retrospect - now that I see these pictures - I should have used a little powder, too. That shine says "July" like fireworks and watermelon!
Note the awesome belt!
And a word about jewelry: necklaces can make you very hot. I stick with earrings and a bracelet when it's warm.
Last but not least...bring a sweater! You'll be sweating on your long walk from your car (because you found free, on the street parking but it was a mile away, haha) but you'll need a sweater in the A/C. I brought a cropped black cardigan just in case, although free-flowing libations kept me warm enough.

Where was your last date, and what do you wear for hot weather dates?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Buying running shoes for bunions

*Note: this post was updated here - click to read some newer thoughts and suggestions!*

Confession: I have revolting, ugly, weird feet. They are not even shaped like feet. I have long feet, high arches with a bony bump on top, with a super wide forefoot including bunions. There are bunions on either side, and the weirdest part is that the outer bunions (known as bunionettes) are lower down compared to the inner bunion. This is because clearly my pinky toe is evolving out.
Please note that my pinky toes appear to be affecting an escape.

So buying running shoes is a huge, huge challenge. It's hard enough to run with bunions, let alone find a shoe that fits! By now, though, I think I've got it. Here are my tips:
1. Find styles with wide toe boxes. Obviously. I find that Saucony and Brooks tend to have wider toe boxes, but New Balance has veered toward the narrow last unfortunately.
Notice how these Adidas are barely wider at the toe versus the heel - not good.

2. Choose shoes with mesh uppers and avoid support fabric along the bunion area. Really, you should avoid any overlay on the toe box, since you need the toe box to be able to completely mold itself to your weird foot. Here are a few good examples of shoes that do not have restrictive plastic or fabric near the bunion.
Saucony Kinvaras - Mesh overlay with minimal fabric support (and none over the bunion area)
Karhu flats with mesh toe

Saucony Triumph (men's) with some plastic and fabric support, but a lot of flexibility in the bunion area

Karhu Fast Ride with a perfectly mesh upper and just a small clear plastic strip around the toe for support.
And here are some examples of what not to wear.
Nike Lunar Eclipse with absolutely no flexibility near the bunion
Brooks Switch - although wide, there's plastic all around the toe box.

These Karhu's failed me: although the top is entirely mesh, the sides of the toe box have a support strip that doesn't let the mesh conform to the shape of my bunion.
3. Ladies, consider buying men's styles. They tend to have wider toe boxes. Of course you can also try wide sizes, but wides tend to have a lot of variability in size and structure, so try them on first. A men's shoe will have a larger toe proportionately.
4. Go up a half size and get longer laces. When you select a flexible mesh upper, you are allowing the shoe to conform a little to your foot. You might be able to go up a half size, then lace your shoes to allow for bunion room. In the example below, you can see I've left lots of slack in the laces near the toe, but pulled them tighter closer to the ankle. I find that with every run the shoes feels funny when I start, but molds to my foot as I run.
Loose at the toe, tight at the ankle

5. Go for depth. Take a look at the depth of the shoe from arch to sole. A deeper shoe, again, allows for more wiggle room.
Trail shoes (this one by Asic) are often deeper to accommodate bulkier socks.
6. Think about cushioning.A softer sole will let your bunion sink down without putting all the stress of landing on one joint (bunions cause the big toe joint to hit the ground before the rest of the forefoot). Therefore, you'll do better with foam cushioning compared to grid, wave, or gel. Just something to think about, of course. Not a hard and fast rule.
7. Consider a minimalist style. Shoes with large heel to toe differential guide you to a heel strike. When you heel strike, you firmly "heel-toe", so you push off hard with your toe. The problem is that if you have bunions, you will almost certainly push off with your metatarsophalangeal (MTP joint - where your big toe joins your foot) since it extends beneath the foot in its enlarged state. This will hurt and worsen your bunions. The Chi running style suggests landing midfoot and basically lifting your whole foot, rather than a push-off. I find this to be protective to the bunion area. A shoe with close to zero drop (Newtons, or many minimal styles) encourage this stride. But don't mess with your stride lightly. You can injure yourself in no time.
Newtons have a heel that is only slightly raised over the toe.
8. Buy skinny socks. This isn't a shoe tip, it's more like an "I give up tip". Still, slim fit, no terry socks just give you a few more millimeters width for your bunions.
9. Lastly, a shoe to avoid: Nike and Adidas both make shoes with "bunion windows" - little patches of telescoping rubber over the bunion area that are supposed to stretch out over the bunion. The problem is, they also shrink back as you move your foot - and the plastic can pinch. I bought a pair like this and I got blood blisters from them. Also they assume your bunion is in one exact place, and they don't consider bunionettes.
Vomeros with weird bunion thing

Monday, July 18, 2011

Jog bra!

It's summer here in New Orleans, which means I have to swallow my pride and jog bra run. I have a choice: die from heat stroke, or run in my jog bra with pale tummy exposed to the masses. (Or the third choice, go inside and get on a treadmill. Boo).
So jog bra it is. I just deal with it. So does everyone else, I suppose, as my sweaty self complete with stinky cotton bra runs by.
So what's your take? T-shirt required, or is a jog bra ok? Or are they only ok for Kara?
I guess if I looked like that it would be ok to run in panties, too.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

On being the MHP

I'm the MHP...Market HIV Pharmacist. I head up the company's HIV program in our market, which extends from Florida to Louisiana. But since HIV is prevalent in certain areas only, I really just have 20 stores: two in Baton Rouge, several in Jackson Mississippi, and the rest in the greater New Orleans area.
Before I moved into my shiny new pharmacy, I was a pharmacist at a busy crazy store in a crappy neighborhood. We had lots of HIV patients, and try as I might, we could not encourage medication adherence or get people to pick up their refills on time. Part of the problem was mental illness (highly correlated with HIV), part was lack of transportation, and part was apathy. It was a little frustrating. Once I moved into my new store, I had zero patients, with HIV or otherwise. I had to build up my clientele bit by bit. Word gets around the HIV community, and HIV patients have started coming to me now.
I'm loving that I have a private counseling room. This week I had two newly-diagnosed patients and neither felt like they fully understood the therapy they were starting. One was a young man; the other a woman in her late 50's. She did not seek medical care for a long time (even though she has Louisiana Medicaid that covers her doctor's visits) and her CD4 count (those are the white blood cells that the HIV virus attacks) was 48 at time of diagnosis - that is quite low. Under 200 classifies you as AIDS; at her level she's at risk for multiple opportunistic infections. We had a long talk and I showed her how to keep track of her lab values to follow her progress, and told her that when she started her medication she'd feel drowsy and dopey at first. She returned today, three days later, to tell me that she had experienced the side effects I told her about, but that since I'd warned her she knew to stick with it until they went away. Her side effects should wain in about 2 weeks, so I have high hopes for her, despite the tell-tail track marks I saw on her arm today.
The young man who came in today has a full time job with insurance, but he's also a part time student and is trying to stay on a budget. He was started on the same medication as the older woman, but the side effects were something he was prepared for. We discussed starting the medication tonight, so he has time to get used to it before he returns to work on Tuesday (he took Monday off). By the time school starts over, he'll be over his loopiness. However, he didn't love his $50 copay. Luckily, I'm the coupon queen and downloaded him a coupon to cover his entire copay.
Being the MHP usually means dealing from a distance- answering other pharmacists' clinical questions, helping bill insurance or use copay assistance, or reaching out to AIDS service organizations. Now that I'm getting patients here I'm glad to be working on the more personal side. I feel like I can establish a relationship and help them cope with this disease.
The only thing is, I never get used to it. I never get calloused. Each new diagnosis hits me in the pit of the stomach.
I know I've shared a lot of crazy pharmacy stories in the past, but I wanted to share some more successful stories, too. It's nice when it's not all drug dealers and drama.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Summer Free for All Series

Last night the hubby and I ran one of the free 2-mile races the NOTC puts on in the summer. The idea is fun - free, family-friendly, beer and CheeWees afterward. But this race was marred by a runner who aggressively and purposefully shoved a child down with a palm to the head just because the kid was in his way. Ok, seriously dude, it's a 2-mile unofficial fun run. Get over it. I said something like, "Hey watch it!" but the runner responded with, "If you slow down in front of me you're going down!". PUH-LEASE. There are always going to be slow people in front of you. Run around them. No big deal. Don't push kids to the ground. The kid got up and was fine, but that doesn't make this ok. The worst thing is that I didn't get a good look at the runner. I was behind him - almost got hit by falling child - then once I made sure the kid was ok,  I passed the offending runner and didn't get a chance to see his number. The crowd was too big to keep an eye on him. I still told race directors and luckily other people reported the incident as well, so they got a good description and they think they know who it is.
Weird stuff. I can't believe anyone would care enough about their time to shove a kid, especially not in a 2 mile fun run!
I did ok considering - 13:49 - definitely have had better times, but it was hot and there was drama. Drama follows me, what can I say?

Monday, July 11, 2011

Ten inventions fitness bloggers need.

1. The Two-way Camera. Takes a picture in both directions, so in one click you capture the race scene and create your own race self-portrait. Ideal for saving energy during a long race!
2. The Digital Diet. Software with food-recognition that automatically finds and replaces fried foods, fast foods, and desserts with quinoa, chia seeds, and Greek yogurt (respectively) in your food photos before a post is published.
3. The Watermark Eraser. A handy app that removes water marks from race pictures stolen off the race website.
4. The Man-Bag fuel belt. A canvas and leather bag that resembles a tool belt, but is sized for Gu...because we all know that a Spi belt is just a tiny little purse you wear around your race. If blogging is already challenging your masculinity, don't make it worse by posting pictures of yourself with a purse!
5. The Wardrober. An add-on to Blogger that recognizes outfits and prevents a post from publishing if you wear the same outfit two days in a row. Avoids embarrassing public knowledge of your clothing re-wears. Bonus: The next Blogger update will include Wardrobe 2.0, which also stops posts if your clothes are inside out, you got deodorant on your shirt, or your outfit choices are age-inappropriate.
6. The Self-Portraiter. Essentially a well-placed shelf, allows your to set your camera timer and take a mirror picture without holding the camera in front of your face.
7. The Blog Bike. A Tri-bike designed for the active blogger and triathlete, featuring a handlebar PC with Wi-fi to allow bikers to update their blogs while cruising through mile 50.
8. The Spell-Check Plus. In addition to checking your spelling, scans your post for the "in" factor key words. Current key words are "Fail", "Green Monster", "Epic", "Killed", and "Awesomesauce". Posts missing at least one of these words will be edited to contain two or more "in" words plus at least one reference to a bodily function. Spell Check Plus is regularly updated to include words most popular in the blogosphere, and has seasonal additions (September and April add the word Boston, for example).
9. The Smart Chip. A re-usable race timing chip that automatically updates your blog as you hit key points in your race. Your time as you hit pre-programmed points will be posted to your blog. Since the chip also reads heart rate and senses moisture and temperature, it is able to accurately assess your physical well-being and generates a post based on this data. For example, a post at mile 20 might read, "Just hit twenty miles in two hours and forty-five minutes. Starting to feel the heat and hills here...might be hitting the wall in about a mile!"
10. The Hills Backdrop. A discreet fold-away back drop with a scene of realistic hills can be placed behind you, upping the hard-core-ness of any running or biking self-portrait. Available in three versions, "Rolling hills", "Steep inclines" and "Holy crap that's a 200 foot sheer cliff".

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Foody Friday: Peaches for $0.87 a pound!

That kind of price can only mean one thing...time to make preserves!
Luckily, peach preserves are easy and the whole process only takes about half an hour! You just need peaches, sugar, and pectin. You can buy pectin at most grocery stores.
This brand has a pectin activator that allows you to use less sugar.
First, you need 24 peaches. Or you can cut this recipe in half and use 12.

Get the hubby to sort out the softest ones so you don't waste any fruit.
Peeled peaches work best, but peeling is arduous. Luckily there's an easy way to do that. Just throw the peaches in a pot of boiling water for a few seconds, then remove them with a slotted spoon.

The peels slide right off!

Next, pull peaches apart into a large pot, removing pits. They should come apart easily thanks to the boiling water bath.

The best part: squish them up with your hands!

They don't need to be completely crushed; some bits and pieces of peach are tasty in preserves.
Now turn the pot on high. Add 4 cups of sugar (you can use 3 cups if you have the pectin shown above since it requires less sugar to gel) and stir well. Stir to prevent sticking as you bring to a boil (note - to keep color fresh, you can add 1/4 lemon juice at this point). If foam collects at the top of the pot, you can skim it off and discard it.

Meanwhile, prepare a box of pectin (1 ounce) by placing it in a measuring cup and mixing with enough sugar to make 1 cup. When the preserves come to a boil, stir pectin in and boil for one minute, stirring constantly to dissolve all the pectin.
Turn the pot off and let it cool for a few minutes before ladling into sterilized jars.

I got 14 half-pint jars from my batch. At this point, the preserves probably seem very runny, but fear not - they will set up as they cool.

Process the jars of preserves by boiling in a hot water bath, as seem in this post.

Then enjoy what's left in the pan by spreading on fresh French bread!
Next morning? Preserves are all nice and gelled! 

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Buying bikes

This Saturday I decided to do something nice for Abe, the little brother who's an undergrad at Loyola. We try to kind of watch out for him, but truthfully he's quite independent. He's a good kid with a double major who runs cross country and does his own taxes.
This weekend I got a text from him: "Check your front step". He'd left us a bag of flavored coffee! So sweet. I was thinking about him walking home from work in the heat, going out of his way to bring the coffee (he works at a coffee shop), and decided that I should buy him a bike. I figured Craig's list was the way to go, since students are still packing up and moving away after graduating or summer semester. Thus began a long day of phone calls, emails, and attempted pick-up arrangements. I've bought bikes off Craig's list before, and some of those sellers are...seedy. In fact I think I've bought at least one stolen bike. And then it got stolen from me. The circle of bike life, you know.
Finally I saw a deal that just might work. It was a mountain bike, but it was just 24" and it was an hour's drive. I didn't know if it would be big enough for Abe. He's not tall, but I think the cut-off for a 24" bike is 5'6" and Abe is probably 5'9". I called Abe and explained the situation, hoping he was off work and could ride over with us and try it out. "Oh," he said, "That's nice, but I bought a bike this morning."
But he got a good deal. He got this bike:
From here

AND it came with a brand new padded seat and grips, AND a bike lock...all for $70 as a fellow student was moving. It's a Specialized bike and it's in perfect condition; it's a 2010 model. He's a bargain shopper for sure!
And I want my Saturday back, and I wish I hadn't given my cell phone number to that guy on the West Bank who was selling four bmx bikes.That's all.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Running into trouble

Back from a blessed long weekend...Hope everyone had a happy fourth!
No I did not run the midnight marathon, even though I wanted to. I decided it was a bad idea. I'm out of shape, slightly injured, and now...I have a cold, too. Maybe next year! 
Abe didn't do it either. I forgot to mention that after his last very rough marathon, I noticed he was walking around in sandals - odd for him. I yanked his jeans leg up and his ankle was enormous and purple. I made him go to his trainer and turns out he sprained it during the race; it's been taped since and he's just easing back into running, too. 
It's been over 2 months since I hurt my leg, and I took the time off from running like I should have. For the past two weeks, I've been easing back into things. I've got to admit, it hasn't been a walk in the park. While I was out, it got hot and humid. And apparently I got out of shape.
I've mostly been running three or four miles, getting up to six two or three times and up to ten once. That ten miler was my first double digit run in about 2.5 months, and although ten miles didn't used to feel like anything, that one was tough. It was hot out and I got winded early. I kept my pace under 8 min/miles, but it was work to do so. This run was a real test for me. I know in the past I'd do 10 easily, with my "slow" pace around 8 min/mile, and feel fine. This run didn't feel fine. I wasn't exhausted, but I felt a little tired. It didn't help that I had a cold and sore throat, too.The way I felt indicated that I have a lot of work to do to get back in shape.
I guess the best thing to do is come up with a training plan. But before I do that, I have to check back in with my doctor. I had a scheduled call-back to discuss how I felt (I asked for a phone consult instead of an appointment, since they're hard for me to make), but he never came to the phone and I ended up hanging up after about ten minutes. So once I get in touch with him, and get over this darned cold (I'm always sick at the most inopportune times!) it will be time to move forward. I'm thinking build up some distance first, then check my speed and add in speed work. Hahahaha. I know full well I'll NEVER do the speed work I prescribe myself. I am terrible at this.
Another good idea is to go ahead and register for a race to "force" myself to train, but I think that's a bad idea since I'm injured. I do have two half-marathons on the books for October, but nothing sooner.
So, that's that.Any words of encouragement to get my butt out there would be appreciated!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Date night!

Last night the hubby and I went on a date. We went to Coquette, one of my favorite places, and I enjoyed every bite even though I have a raging sore throat (I only get sick when I travel - I just got back from a quick turn-around two day business trip). We tried a cocktail featuring jalapeno tequila - it was amazing! It had just enough heat to make you sip it. Instead of slamming it, like we usually do. Just kidding.
We cannot take a serious picture.
I wore a new dress I got at Neiman Marcus "Last Call" - basically their clearance site. The dress was literally a 5th of the original price. I love the color and interesting collar, but I wish it was a tiny bit more fitted (it's rather boxy) and about 6" longer. I think the style is appropriate for work, but the length isn't.
I love having these date nights. We make it a point to catch up on each others' lives and careers - it's funny how work can be such a big part of your life, yet you don't necessarily share your ups and downs with loved ones. I guess part of it is that neither of us likes to take our work home (metaphorically speaking; if I actually took my work home I think that's called felony drug distribution). Lately I've been pursuing some important contracts for my company, and David's been closing some pretty big files, so we actually had interesting and intense stories to share!
And of course on date night I order big. No counting dollars or calories. It's just a night to relax and laugh together.
Do you do date night with your significant other? What's your favorite kind of date? And what awesome cocktail have you tried lately?