I stole an idea from my brother and gave all my friends an assignment this Thanksgiving. I wanted everyone to keep an ear out for any obscene or unusual one-liners spoken by the people they were celebrating with, and to then e-mail them to me.

I had an overwhelming outpouring of submissions, and have to share a portion of them. Please note these comments are taken completely out of context, so no judgment shall be passed on these poor saps who we’re now exploiting.

“Wait, so all female chickens lay eggs?” “Yes, and all female humans.”

“How come when she talks about pigeons it’s cool but not when i talk about goats?” “Because she never cut a pigeon’s balls off.”

“I’m just giving the turkey a douche.”

“I feel like I’m holding a cold pooch.”

“He just gets a look in his eye, I can’t describe it. It’s only every few days that I’ll catch it and it’s much easier for both of us. No pressure for him.”

“I want to regurgitate every time I think about the fact that my mom made salmon loaf.”

“Don’t those gay men like the theater and stuff like that?”

“Lady Gaga is a man…he would love to help stuff this turkey.”

“I have uncomfortable shoes.”

“I used to think I was a conservative until I started conting up how many sexual partners I’ve had.”

So, just in case you thought you had an especially awkward or inappropriate family, just remember the majority of us are in the same boat. Thanks everybody for participating – round two starts this Christmas Eve.


apple of my eye

My favorite dessert is apple pie with vanilla ice cream. Sadly, I don’t have the time or caloric allowance to enjoy this as often as I’d like. I’ve figured out an easy way to create almost the same result with much less effort and calories.

step one: butter a small baking dish
step two: slice a few apples into very thin slices (you can add in pears, berries, etc)
step three: toss sliced fruit in some brown sugar, granulated sugar, flour, cinnamon and some softened butter. I don’t measure, just use fairly even amounts and make sure it coats the fruit.
step four: bake at 375 for 25 minutes; serve a la mode.

You can make this for one person or for a group, just increase recipe accordingly. Enjoy!

weekend wanderings

This weekend Nicki and I started out at the Downtown Phoenix Public Market…

You can get so much cool stuff, all locally grown and super cheap. I picked up an acorn squash, a bag of potatoes and some zucchini all for about $3.
After the market we stopped by my friend/neighbor Emily’s art show. Emily is an inspiration – she makes beautiful jewelry and pieces of art out of recycled tin. She combines the coolest things that you’d never think to put together and the result is amazing. She’s also quite entertaining to have a glass of wine with ­čÖé Emily – I love your house, and I hope to take advantage of your backyard sometime soon!

easy veggie lasagna

I improvised a few recipes and ended up with the best lasagna I’ve ever made. Really light and lots of flavor.

Sauce:┬áSaute one chopped onion, one chopped zucchini, some chopped mushrooms and a few cloves of minced garlic in olive oil. After veggies are soft, add on can of diced tomatoes (don’t drain it). Add some basil and oregano, salt and pepper.

Mix one 15 ounce container of ricotta chesse with one beaten egg and one quarter cup of grated parmesan cheese; set aside. You’ll also need some shredded or sliced mozzarella but don’t add this to the mixture.

I used regular whole wheat lasagna noodles from Fry’s. You can use regular if you prefer. I boil them with some salt in the water so they don’t stick together. You only need about eight noodles.

Once all ingredients are prepared, layer in this order in a two quart baking dish: sauce, noodles, ricotta mixture, mozzarella. Repeat until everything’s used up. Cook at 375 for 25 minutes. Let sit for at least 10 minutes before cutting.

Peter Bregman

My brother has a mancrush on Peter Bregman. Yeah bro, I just called you out. 
To the untrained eye PB may look like just a regular guy, but dig deeper and you’ll discover that he is so much more. Take a closer look at Mr. Bregman and you’ll see that he is the epitome of cool. He exudes charisma. He bleeds authenticity.

Dan’s been pushing this guys writing and business blog on anyone who’ll listen, and for a while, I ignored it as a fleeting soapbox. When the enthusiasm refused to wane, I finally took the plunge and checked out some of his stuff. It’s fantastic. I’m drinking the PB Kool-Aid. Cheers, Dan.

The guy is a brilliant professional. His weekly blog discusses common workplace obstacles in an effort to simplify and resolve them. His writing style is so humble and authentic that it’s hard not to relate to him. The irony is that all of his business advice can also be applied to ordinary person to person situations.

Check out his work when you have a chance, it’ll wow you. I have to believe that this is not the only time I’ll be giving a shout out to PB in this blog. Just tonight I found my self fist bumping the air after he summarized an idea I’ve always believed in:

Anyone can do anything as long as three conditions exist:

  1. You want to achieve it
  2. You believe you can achieve it
  3. You enjoy trying to achieve it

the little jessie that could

I recently met up with an old friend and spent the evening catching up. When I mentioned my upcoming plans to run a ten-mile race he really wanted to know why I was doing this. His questions weren’t out of contempt – he just  wanted to understand my motivation.

I gave a textbook answer; running was good for my health. This satisfied his curiosity but I felt like it was artificial. Aaaaannd I sounded lame. I thought about it all week, hoping I could figure out a better (and cooler) reason for why I was taking this on. 

*five days later*

This morning I ran my ten-miler. As I crossed the finish line I was in shock (and a fair amount of pain). Along every mile I’d been asking myself why on earth I signed up for this nonsense. Then suddenly it dawned on me.

I did this because I didn’t think that I could.  And that’s an awesome feeling.

 In my entire life I’d never run more than four miles before training for this race. I figured that if I attempted and failed, no one would be surprised. But, on the off chance I could pull it off, I’d totally increase my badassness.

I can’t pinpoint a specific moment or event where this change of heart took place. My first thought is that it happened because I’m at a very good and settled point in life and wanted to shake things up. I wouldn’t change a thing about my life and I am extremely happy, but I think that as soon as I feel too stagnant I want to rock the boat just a little. I’ve always felt that while it’s a blessing to be content, it can be dangerous to become complacent.

I know another part of my motivation comes from having completely amazing parents. My parents have always believed in me, and more importantly, they’ve taught me to believe in myself. Nauseatingly corny? Very. Am I grateful? Beyond.

Even after living on my own for the past eight years, I’m still thankful that I was taught at an early age to challenge myself and try new things. Aside from the assurance that I’ll never be bored, this mentality has helped me build confidence and succeed. Thanks Mom and Dad for your love and support!