Friday, April 29, 2011

today


there was a beautiful wedding in london this morning
congratulations to the new duke & duchess of cambridge
across the pond in a little corner of dc
today's the day we take tank to the vet
yes, for that surgery
he's going to be wearing a very unique hat for the occasion
poor pup

Thursday, April 28, 2011

broken bodies & broken hearts

today our hearts are breaking 
because our friend is broken
while riding his bike yesterday,
a garbage truck turned into him 
and nearly ended him
our friend was in the street
until the ambulance came
:
he's in the ICU today 
after a very long and painful day 
in two ambulances and two different ERs
his spine, his brain, and his organs
thank god
are okay
but -- a host of surgeries await 
he's got a very long road ahead of him
:
his empty bike rack last night
is a jarring reminder that
we are all so fragile but
our friendships are so strong
all things considered
he is feeling very lucky and so are we
please keep him close to your thoughts this week

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

wagon wheel

almost eight months ago
on a sunny august day in omaha
my brand new husband and i
were dancing & belting this song out
to each other, in front of
our wedding guests
just like we had done
about a hundred times before that day.

happy wednesday.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

roast chicken & carrots with olives & lemon

the other night, brad called me from the airport. his plane had landed and it was on time, but he couldn't find his car. i did what any good wife would do: i laughed. but here's something i didn't do: panic about the dinner i made him getting cold (sometimes i get hung up on stuff like this. i'm working on it). this is a perfect thing to make during these periods of "transitional" weather, when you don't know if you want a hot or a cold or an in between.

roast chicken & carrots with olives & lemon
ingredients for dinner for two:
  • two very fresh chicken breasts (bone-in, skin-on)
  • two extra large carrots, peeled & cut into like size sticks (or 4-5 regular-sized carrots)
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled & smashed
  • 2 lemons, cut in wedges
  • 1/4 cup pitted manzanilla olives
  • olive oil
  • cumin, salt, pepper, bay leaves to taste
first, season the chicken liberally with cumin, salt & pepper. then sear the chicken skinside-down in a dry nonstick skillet until skin is golden brown. meanwhile, toss the lemons, garlic, carrots, & olives in 1 T. olive oil, season with 1/2 tsp. of each spice. place in baking dish, then nestle the chicken in with vegetables. cover, bake for 20-25 minutes at 350. uncover, cook for 15 minutes until vegetables and chicken are done & starting to brown. squeeze some roasted lemon over chicken before serving hot or warm or room temperature.

in the end, brad did find his car. he came back. i was very glad about all of this and we enjoyed this dinner at room temperature with cold white wine and warm brown rice.

via

Monday, April 25, 2011

hello.

guard tank says it's business time.
"So, are you ever going to start a blog again, that you like, you know...update?" Those were the words of a friend over a very winey dinner one night at Acqua al 2 in Eastern Market in January of this year. And, I laughed (partially because I didn't know anyone read my blog or cared enough that I kept a blog!), and then I felt something ... what was that? Was I hurt? I could feel a slight sting of his words as I finished off my canneloni. And I thought to myself, "If that was hurtful, you still care about doing this thing -- what's stopping you?"

I quit blogging because it got heavy. I got heavy. Everything was heavy. I needed to hit the re-set button in a lot of ways (and, in a lot of ways, I did). I started a new blog, then another new blog, then another new blog, and I kept losing passwords, forgetting to update, thinking too hard about what I was going to announce to the world or nobody at all.

It took me a lot of time to sort myself out. And it wasn't easy. I work really, really hard (still). I've had wonderful days and then I've had days when the world was so heavy I thought I would just collapse under the weight of it all. But I didn't...as my Nonnie used to say, "Hey, that's life, boy! Nobody's gonna do it for ya."

Approaching Lent this year, I knew I was going to give up Facebook. That part (deep, concentrated breath)...wasn't that bad. In its' place: a blog. For me, it's a more honest, more introspective, less dependent relationship with "social media." (But God, I love Facebook.) I also wanted to wait and see if I did in fact update this one before I made it public.

After 40-some days, eighty or so posts, and a lot of surprised friends ("Um, you have a blog?") I'm happy to say that I'm back. Writing is therapy; sharing is healthy. So: here I am again, imperfect as ever.

Infrequently asked questions:
Q: "Why Bag & Baguette"?
A: "Bag" is a nickname that my niece Emily gave to Brad back when she was just knee high (and couldn't say Brad.) It was so cute, it just stuck...and one day Brad called me Baguette and my heart ran away with him all over again.

Q: "What kind of blog?"
A: A lifestyle blog. Sometimes life is so quiet that I think my head will fall off. Sometimes it's not. I'll be showing & telling you what it's like being Mrs. Bag, from sweatpants to black ties. I'm going to share when I have something to say about being happy or sad or an in between, sometimes I'll show you what I ate for dinner, and sometimes what our dog does. 

Q: "It's annoying that you treat your dog like a child."
A: If you've never met him then you can't understand.

a lovely song

Friday, April 22, 2011

april showers survival kit

a few things that make my rainy days a little nicer: 
1) early grey tea
2) sturdy umbrella
3) rain boots

here's a good one for today

the perfect mood lifter
when skies are cloudy
but it's friday anyway

as my favorite cashier at a grocery store
i used to shop at says
make it a good one

Thursday, April 21, 2011

ten things i learned from "i love lucy"

growing up, there were two channels i was allowed to watch: 1) the disney channel, 2) nick at night. i am a longtime fan of the classics. i love lucy was an easy favorite for me then and has remained a favorite throughout the years -- in fact, not only have i have gotten in the habit of watching an early morning episode after tank's morning walk, but i am living in a real live "i love lucy" situation (with another couple of friends living two floors down -- and with the exception of the latin musician, it is entirely TBD who is who in that scenario). i realized that after all those years of watching, i had learned some really important things:

1) always be a good friend so you can always have a good friend. 
you never know when you're going to need someone to join you in a middle-of-the-night scheme.

2) the size of your apartment has no bearing on how much fun you can have in it.

3) use rubber gloves & remove your wedding ring before you do the dishes.

4) regular (& thorough) cleaning of your home is essential - 
you never know when an agent will be stopping by.

5) don't expect your husband to understand why you do the things you do. 
do expect him to love you anyway.

6) celebrate your differences with your spouse. 
embrace that you aren't (and wouldn't ever want to be) the same person.

7) best way to get yourself involved at your husband's workplace is to support & encourage him 
(not by participation).

8) keep an open mind & try new things 
(as long as they're legal)

9) regarding mothers & mothers-in-law: 
even if you don't always speak the same language, love & respect are universal. 
be grateful for them.

10) every day is a good opportunity for comedy, displays of affection, & forgiveness.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

facebook status update no. 2


well, it's almost over. on sunday, lent will be over and i'll be back on the book. i have really (really) missed it. however, i wanted to take a minute to observe how i feel today without it. i feel:

less frantic
more introspective
generally less anxious

and, i like that.

i have been surprised, over the last six weeks, to find who i think of frequently (tertia cain -- if you ever read this, i think i have missed your funny status updates the most!) and, who i haven't thought of at all. i have especially enjoyed how impressed brad is with me for doing this. however, as much attention as facebook gets, i miss being a part of the bizarre digital social experiment.

i'll see you sunday, friends. i can't wait.

Monday, April 18, 2011

dinner for one

menu:
smoked oysters
manzanilla olives
extra sharp cabot cheddar
carr's water crackers
tree-free chardonnay

dessert:
frozen chocolove dark chocolate

brad's on the road again. tank & i are holding down the fort until tomorrow. 
hurry home, bag. 
we miss you.

seven

if you hang out through the first 40 seconds of this
you'll be rewarded with a truly kick-ass song
prince's song about winning with intellect & savoir-faire
is perfect for jamming out on a monday

: )

Sunday, April 17, 2011

goodness

what a weekend
catching up with friends on friday
saturday: a stunning rainy day
with a very beautiful party
for a very beautiful bride
yoga & brunch & tapas & champagne
a 4 a.m. bedtime and loads of belly laughter 
a sleepover and a comedy of errors in the morning
gorgeous sunny weather for house-hunting
a drink on the waterfront then
fajitas with more friends
and our first offer on a house

i'm so happy i'm so tired
good night & happy sunday

Thursday, April 14, 2011

best friends friday: julie

meet julie:

 once upon a time
julia claire and i were neighbors in georgetown
i despised her from the minute i met her
her shoes were too cute
(translation: we were meant to be bests)
we caused trouble in every hill and valley in that neighborhood
in kitchens in bars (or on bars, if you were lucky)
kindred spirits, she was a constant source of 
sound advice, support, and fashion inspiration

she helped me through 
some really tough times:
she was always kind to volunteer
to have me for a sleepover
or to lend me a week's worth of clothes
when i couldn't see straight & everything was upside down

 and what's even more
she was the first to be exited for me
when things were good
she celebrated with me during some very happy times
here we were in new york for my bachelorette party
 and there she is standing next to me right
before
i said my vows 

and now julie's going to get married
a thousand congratulations
what a wonderful future awaits you my dear
you are a sure favorite of mine 
and my good wishes for you overflow

this weekend is YOUR weekend
before i stand next to YOU as YOU say your vows
i only have to say:
  

happy bachelorette weekend, chiquita
let's tear it up

my horoscope today

via

sidra's oatmeal bars

let me get something off my chest. 
do you see that beautiful, gleaming machine in this picture?
the picture of perfection in stand mixers in a big apple red
a red that rings like a bell?
this is the first time i've used it.

 jim, heidi, kris, mary kate, bonnie, sandy: i'm so sorry. really and truly -- 
this has bothered me every single day. 
i am so sorry. i have had no excuse.
but i feel so much better now.

 here's why: i came across a recipe for homemade oatmeal bars.
and i had to make them that minute. 
this was the perfect time to use my stand mixer. 
this might be the world's most perfect breakfast bar recipe.
 i discovered it on sidra forman's blog
sidra is a breath of fresh air in this city. 
thank you, sidra.
 this was the perfect opportunity to use my beautiful mixing machine 
for something that wasn't cake or cookies.
something more wholesome.
 something i would eat and enjoy
every single morning
as the weather warms up and i don't want to eat hot cereal in the morning
but i still want to eat breakfast.
you just can't beat these bars
which taste as good as the expensive kind
like kashi, cliff, etc.
and you can put whatever you like in them.
thank you sidra for sharing this wonderful recipe. 
thank you mohlman & tringe families for my beautiful stand mixer.
i think we've bonded.

sidra's oatmeal bars
yield: 24 bars

ingredients
  • 5 cups old fashioned oats
  • 12 oz. crunchy almond butter
  • 2 T. flax seeds
  • 1/4 c. maple syrup (i did use the good VT variety!) 
  • 1/4 c. dried cherries, chopped
  • 1/4 c. dried apricots, chopped
  • 1/2 c. dark chocolate chunks
  • 1/4 c. canola oil 
  • 1 c. water
combine all ingredients in stand mixer, mix until combined. bake in a jelly roll pan (if not nonstick, then spray with oil or line with parchment) at 350 for 15 minutes. remove from oven and let them cool completely before cutting into 24 bars. wrap individually and store in freezer in a sealed container.

sidra's bars have about 200 calories per bar. i estimate that mine are about the same (though may be a touch higher as i used slightly different ingredients). this single recipe made 24 bars, enough for a month of breakfasts. enjoy with a tall glass of iced coffee & some fresh fruit for a very good morning.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

happy birthday bbox

happy birthday to my dearest fiend stef.


i love ya like a brother. 
you have an incredible way 
of bringing people together and 
infecting everyone with disease
laughter
i'm really glad we were wombats 
back in 2007 which was 4 years ago
old.
you and your chicken legs
were the greatest thing that happened to 1983. 
at least until i was born.
happy birthday.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

classic

according to one youtube user
this song is 
"one of the best songs of all time"
if THAT doesn't convince you 
to listen to it 
i don't know what will
happy tuesday

Monday, April 11, 2011

chicken chili verde


i set out to make white chicken chili. it turns out, i don't know how to make that. however, this chicken chili verde was just about the happiest culinary accident i've had in a while. it was a highly enjoyable summer-tasting soup that was hearty without being heavy and had just the right amount of heat.

chicken chili verde

ingredients:
  • 2 poblano peppers
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 cans corn (fresh is better)
  • 2 cans white beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 1 box chicken stock + 1 cup water
  • 1/2 T. cumin
  • 1 t. chili powder
  • 1 t. mexican oregano
  • oil, salt, pepper
start by peeling and slicing your onion & garlic and sauteeing them in oil until they are soft and translucent. slice poblano pepper and sautee with onion & garlic. add chicken stock + water plus spices. add 1 can corn, 1 can rinsed & drained white beans, and add whole chicken breasts to pot. cover & cook for 20 minutes to poach chicken breasts.

after 20 minutes, remove your chicken breasts to a separate surface and use two forks to shred the meat. use an immersion blender to puree the onions, garlic, peppers, & stock mixture until it reaches your desired consistency. then add in the shredded chicken plus the other cans of corn & beans (drained). re-heat.

garnish with obvious choices like cheese, tortilla chips, scallions, and sour cream, or go fancy and use avocado and crema and limes (or avocado crema if you're very adventurous).

summer is very near

today's forecast predicts 82 degrees
summer & sunburns & cook-outs are so close
mmm
here's hoping for a margarita tonight
while the sun sets

happy monday
: )

Saturday, April 9, 2011

april showers

on a walk with tank this morming, i saw lots of beautiful, dewy flowers 

 curious dog onlooking from the background 
 i love tulips. i love springtime just for the tulips. aren't they graceful?
 tiny little daffodils
 some daffodils peeking through a fence
 lovely lovely lovely
 tank made a beeline for this beautiful robin. it's a good thing i got that new, strong leash. who knew our frenchie was a birder?
 a beautiful flowering tree at 8th & a
 and a little garden along the street
 even a few tulips sprouting up in a tree box.
i love the colors on this one. like makeup! 

off to annapolis again today - and while i am growing tired of the gray skies, i promise not to complain about them as they're responsible for this beautiful collection of buds. buon weekend.

Friday, April 8, 2011

my dream home


so, here's an embarrassing fact: i planned on winning the hgtv dream home. to the point where i justified the acquisition of our dog because it was fine, we were going to be moving into a giant house in vermont and live inside an l.l. bean catalog and snow is so pretty? let's say that i'm a big believer in the power of positive thinking.

so, here's another embarrassing fact: i didn't win the hgtv dream home. i know, i know, i was just as heartbroken as you are reading this. however, i'm going to focus on the positive here: i don't have to drive around in a denali, and i don't have to be on a tv show where they film me gushing about how big the bathrooms are (a triple sink!?) or how i am america's worst skiier but i love hot chocolate and fireplaces?

so, happy friday: i'll be at work, and i'll come home to a non-hgtv-housemansion but to an apartment that is a perfectly dreamy home for me and my husband and our dog who can't figure out how his left ear works. i love my life, really and truly and really and truly.