I hope everyone's week is off to a good start. I'm excited to blog, even though I have no particular topic in mind. I figured I'd do a brain dump style post and tell you all sorts of things that are making me happy. This is a stressful time work wise, and blogging has always been a great stress reliever for me, so I relish the chance to sit down and do it since I caught up on grading this weekend.
Without further delay, here are my March musings!
As a college faculty member that works closely with students, let me tell you how much of my diet is Dominoes pizza. Film screening on Tuesday night? Pizza. When there are leftovers, you take it home! Lunch on Thursday? Leftover pizza. Meeting with the club you advise on Friday? Pizza. Need a quick meal before taking said club to a play on Saturday night? Leftover pizza. Needless to say, I eat a lot of pizza, so maybe it's no wonder I've started craving salads. A few things I love in my salad lately: arugula (it's so good), apples, peppers, carrots, purple cabbage (obsessed with crunchiness), pecans, bleu cheese, and a dressing I make very similar to this one (PS, this salad is amazing too).
You Too Can Make Falafel!
Our friend Jennifer got us Sheet Pan Suppers recipe book one year for Christmas, and there's a falafel recipe we just got around to trying. When I say we, I mean Brendan prepped everything, and I put it in the oven while he was in class, and I still managed to not do that part perfectly. Luckily, the falafel recipe turned out to be fail proof, and I'm proud to say we can now add this one to our repertoire. I never thought about making falafel at home. While we made ours in the oven, here's a free recipe online you could try if you too want to make this delight.
So, my coworker Andrew and his wife Allie made me some ice cream that's dairy free and put it in the freezer at work along with a lasagna for Brendan and I for after baby girl comes. How thoughtful is that? I had no idea what to expect from homemade dairy free ice cream (the ingredients are cocoa, vanilla extract, coconut cream, lactose free milk, sugar, and brown sugar), but guys, this stuff is AMAZING. It basically tastes like eating a mounds bar. It's so delicious that I will probably cry when it's gone.
|get it? sweet!|
In other amazingly sweet gestures, our co-worker Stephanie crocheted this beautiful pink rainbow blanket and presented it to us today. I couldn't wait to get home and put it in the nursery. Above is the purple chevron blanket that our friend Jenni knitted for the baby. I cannot believe how talented our friends are and how much time they put into these creations we and our daughter will cherish forever.
In other sweet gestures, we were completely surprised at our honor society meeting when the members presented us with a whole bag of baby gifts. They were sneaky and caught us totally off guard, and I cried.
These amazing members completed 164 hours of community service this year (all related to forwarding reading, writing, and literature), and we planned our induction ceremony a month early this year because we wouldn't miss it.
I can't do a sweet gestures segment without sharing this photo of my laundry doing, house cleaning, dinner cooking husband extraordinaire. I managed to do the grocery shopping yesterday and try to stay on top of what I can, but Brendan is definitely picking up the slack around here.
A New Blog Favorite
I'm always on the hunt for new blogs to read, and I came across this one thanks to my bestie, Corley. I delight in reading about the Frugalwoods, and even though we'll probably never be as frugal as they are, the blog inspired me to look at our monthly spending from January in detail. I was pleased that we put away a third of our income, but the Frugalwoods save more like 70%! Inspired by their thriftiness, the blog made me think of all sorts of ways I could curtail my spending. Essentially, the Frugalwoods philosophy is spend money on the things that make you really happy but stop spending on things you don't really appreciate (such as dinners out just because you're exhausted, drinks with friends just because it's "what you do," drive through coffee because it's habitual, or new clothes because you have "nothing to wear." I'm eager to see what our spending looks like in a month where I'm being more self-aware now, and the Frugalwoods have already inspired me to skip on eating out a couple of times, hunt for good deals, and embrace a more conservative approach to spending.
Tomorrow is election day, and I'm working in voting between an oil change for Brendan's car and a full day of work that includes tutoring, teaching a new workshop (on college application essays), and assessing British Literature artifacts (you're jealous, right?) But we researched all the candidates this weekend, and we're excited to cast our votes tomorrow. As I didn't have to tell my American Literature students today because William Garrison wrote it better than I could express, apathy is terrible; I hope everyone votes!
Brendan and I went to the movies this weekend, and Annihilation with Natalie Portman is pretty freaking weird. Brendan read the books the movie is based on and said it's almost impossible to adapt the books to film, but the movie was entertaining to us both.
The Jungle Book at MCT
We took a group of students to the Midland Community Theater this weekend to see The Jungle Book, and it was absolutely delightful. The cast is made up of high school students, and the cast we saw was an all female cast. They were wonderful. The play was funny and touching, and the costumes and set were beautiful. The show runs until March 25th, so you still have plenty of time to catch a performance.
George W. Bush...Paints
Also in Midland until March 25th? George W. Bush's Portraits of Courage on display at the Museum of the Southwest. You can bet I was not going to let Brendan miss this one. I downloaded the app, watched the videos, appreciated each painting, and reminisced about my fondness for George W. Bush (proof that you can like a person without agreeing with all his politics). I found this exhibit both devastating and inspiring...an exercise in how we cope with what's past and atone for what is lost.
Those are all my current March Musings. Wish me luck in the last week before spring break!