Sunday, May 25, 2008

I got the job!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I found out Friday! I was vacuuming and Casey ran up to me with the phone and I saw the number on my caller ID and I practically flung the vacuum across the room. Really, it did fly a few feet. Then I stood there, trying to gain composure for a moment. When I answered the phone, my soon to be boss was really happy and sweet, saying how happy they were to be able to offer the job to me, and the rest was a blur. I am just happy that this is over, because I have been a nervous wreck for the last two weeks, trying not be a wreck, but the more I tried to not focus on what could go wrong, the crazier I became!
My first day is on Tuesday! It is in a hospital close to downtown Portland, and the commute will be very easy on me. I have always worked in medical clinics at least 16 miles from my house, usually in the suburbs, so I am very excited to get a closer job. The clinic specializes in breast cancer treatment, but does all different types of surgery, and applies holistic treatments where they feel it would be beneficial.
The last job I had (besides working for my mother) was in a cosmetic surgical clinic and we had to push treatments on people who did not need or were able to afford it (such as someone most likely not seeing any difference after surgery, and us telling them that they really would before hand and charging them thousands of dollars for it, knowing full well that they probably would not benefit from the treatments) That job was very hard on me, even though I tried to stay optimistic about it, I just didn't feel good working there. When the economy started to sink, and patients stopped walking in the door because elective surgery wasn't as important as paying bills, everyday I went to work we were blamed for it. (even though it affected the entire company across the country, not just here in Oregon. ) That is when I decided to go back to college, because I was burnt out and wanted to do something that was positive. So this new job goes hand in hand with what I want to do, being part of an organization that is making a positive difference for families. They don't turn away anyone who can't afford treatment, and help people sort out their financial situations to make it easy, quite a change to what I was used to dealing with. I am happy to have a job where I can wake up in the morning and be happy to go to work, something that I wont take for granted!
I want to say that my husband was so good to me, he knows how much I can stress out about everything and he was so kind and sweet to me, Casey has the relaxed sweetness I need, he helps balance me out. My blogging friends, thanks for the well wishes, it really did mean so much to me. I love reading all different types of blogs and I really do learn a lot from everyone's different life experiences. So the feedback I got made me feel great, thank you!
I am going to take the summer off school to get adjusted to my new job and then start again in the fall, yay!

Still not much baking going on, the weather has been humid and muggy, and baked goods just don't seem that appetizing. I made this German potato salad the other day, and I loved the recipe!

I have to say, this was the best potato salad I have ever had and it has no mayo, so even though there is a little bacon, it is still not that unhealthy. I think I will make this a lot this summer. We had this with some BBQ steak and it was very good on a hot evening. The week was mostly rainy, but yesterday the sun came out and we spent the day wallowing in our good news about the job. We started off by having a big breakfast outside, I made these potato cakes, I was trying to replicate them from my favorite breakfast restaurant, The Tin Shed on Alberta Street, I love their breakfasts, but to go there it costs us about 70 USD for the two of us, so I thought about it and what I really like from there is their potato cakes that come with all the breakfasts. So I made these at home and was really happy with the results!

They are just shredded potatoes with green onions and green bell peppers, formed into little cakes and fried on a griddle. Then I sprinkled a little bit of Parmesan cheese on top. They taste really good with a little sour cream on top. In the photo, they look really burnt, but that isn't so, they are really crispy on the outside and tasted almost mashed on the inside.

Then in the early evening, my bro-in-law, Andrew, his girlfriend, Debbie came over for a BBQ, it was so much fun! We made these teriyaki steak shishkabobs, that tasted so good!

After a little food break we grilled cheeseburgers, Debbie stuffed the patties with garlic and onions, and we grilled pineapples on the BBQ to put on top! I LOVE grilled pineapple! It was a great relaxing evening, and afterwards Casey and I climbed in the hammock and Debbie and Andrew laid on a blanket and we chilled out. The weather had been so humid, it felt like you could squeeze water out of the air. It started to drizzle rain and it felt good to lay outside and get misted on. We laid outside until it started rain harder, then went inside to play video games. That is when a crazy thunderstorm started and we went outside and watched it together from the front porch. It so much fun!

I am really happy right now, I always am, but this was a great weekend, and I have so much to look forward to!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Heat makes Oregonians Krazy

It got really hot here this weekend and my brain felt sloshed.

This was in the shade!
What is funny is how crazy people get when the temperature rises here. Portland is notorious for being an overly friendly city. I am really friendly, so are most people I know. Some of my friends who move here from out of town have a hard time adjusting to how nice everyone is. Some people consider North Portland to be "the ghetto" but in reality, there is no ghetto in Portland. But this weekend there was Rap music blasting all night, fights, people partying in corner store parking lots. Portland is a pretty tame city, but in North Portland when the heat comes out, at first, I think people like to pretend they are in LA!
Today I was walking to the grocery store and I hadn't even left my street yet and I overhear "Take her bag...Take her f-ing bag" I thought it was just dialogue, but then I hear"Take her f-ing glasses...and take her f-ing bag....Do it...F-ing do it!" I thought to myself, I am wearing sunglasses, and I have a bag! I look up and there is a young couple, about 15 or 16, white wannabe gangsters. The boyfriend is telling his girlfriend to jump me (rob and beat me up) and she is saying "Nah,Nah,Nah" When I look up, the guy is looking at me and he does a pose (that was in retrospect HILARIOUS) like he is hardcore. And his voice gets louder as he stares straight at me"Take the bitch's glasses..go f-k her up." Then the girl grabbed him and dragged him down the street.
Funny thing is he couldn't tell from across the street that my glasses are less than 5 dollars, and I broke it, so one side is held together by a paper clip! (I am cheap and I had just bought those damn glasses from forever 21) and I had no money on me! I was paralyzed in my tracks, not out of fear, but out of shock..This does not happen on my street. It is the heat, I tell ya! Makes us Oregonians crazy. Even I have been listening to rap ( Jay-z and Kanye are my favorites!!!) all weekend with Casey while sitting on the front porch, drinking champagne and BBQing, but that is because we have been celebrating.
Celebrating what? I cannot say until tomorrow, just in case something happens and it falls through, but that would have to be a freak reason. Lets just say all my hard work this week really paid off! I will post about it tomorrow evening....!!!!!
Here is a picture of me about 15 minutes after the incident. Don't I look like too sweet of a person to want to rob? I guess my glasses are just way too cool, LOL!

Not too much baking this week, actually none at all unless you count my bread machine bread, which I really don't count. (unless I do a fancy mixture, which I haven't) It has been so hot that I haven't wanted to use the oven unless necessary. Most of our food is consumed in the early morning and after 9:30 at night, which we having been using our little tabletop grill out on our porch for every dinner. So much fun, We made these lemongrass skewers,
they were yummy and reminded me of food you get from a Bento stand where they cook everything in a huge fire pit.

We also made brie hamburgers stuffed with blue cheese, grilled onions, and herbs from our garden, but I have no pics.
Here is one of our front porch breakfasts:

The heat may be frying my brain because I thought my waffle looked like a monster with his tongue sticking out!

Not much happened this weekend besides all lot of walking, laying out in the backyard

and Nigel got his quarterly makeover.


Sunday, May 11, 2008

St. Johns Weekend

What a week! No news on my dream job at OHSU, but this could take awhile to pan out. I am patient! In the meantime I have been busy with school (taking mostly online courses this term to save tuition costs and transportation, which has been working out well.) and still working part time at my Mom's office. Happy Mother's Day, by the way, to anyone who may read this that is a mother!!!
My Zojirushi Home Bakery is not letting me down, bread is happily consumed in this house daily.... I decided to try out the Cake mode, and the first time I did, I accidentally pushed the "Cake" button twice, which sets it to "Jams and Jellies" mode. So the first cake was a failure! It really wasn't my day, I was trying to make Matcha Swirl Poundcake, and I knocked my expensive tin of Matcha that i bought in Seattle on the floor, I tried to sweep it up and there was too much dog hair and ickyness for it to be saved. Somedays are just like that in the kitchen, I suppose, where nothing goes as planned. The next day was a new day and I started over, and my Matcha Swirl Poundcake was a success, and I was happy!

Friday was the start of our weekend together and I decided to throw us a little party, By "party" I mean the two of us, but it was still fun! We had mini bottles of Champagne w/ frozen strawberries and Fondue! My Mother-in-Law, Betty gave me her fondue pot last time we visited her, so we were able to finally try it out. I used a mixture of Gruyere and Swiss cheese, and used homemade crusty French Bread from the bread machine. It was our first time using Canned Heat before and when Casey lit it, the flame got huge and scorched the cheese. A few frantic minutes later, we dug out tea lights and all was saved, and there was no fire, thank goodness!

The next day we headed out to St. John's (a little neighborhood community that we live on the edge of) St. John's is such a sweet area of Portland, it still has a quaint small town vibe to it, with old restaurants and diners, cute little shops, and my favorite bridge in Portland, the historic St. Johns Bridge that leads you to Forest Park. St John's Was celebrating their annual festival, with a carnival and music, bier gardens, and the local shops were having sidewalk sales.

All very cute. We perused the festival, had some coffee, then continued our destination to forest park. I love the St. John's bridge, it is beautiful, it has a view that looks like it heads straight into the forest, and it is taller than most bridges in Portland, which makes me kinda dizzy and weird when I cross it, but I still love it!

We headed to Forest Park and hiked about 15 miles.

We had packed a picnic of sandwiches (w/ leftover french bread) and my favorite Sake, so it was a great day!

The wild flowers are beautiful right now, and we saw many birds and chipmunks.

This hike really revitalized us, i think we needed it. Times have been great for us, but we had both agreed that time was moving way too fast lately, so the hike helped slow things down for us (I hope I am explaining that accurately.) We headed back into St. John's, this time the bridge cross didn't make me weird, thanks to a little bit of Sake!

The festival was still going strong, so we had a little bit of food and watched a band play. We were both feeling great a decided to walk home from there. Boy, we were tired when we got home, but in a great way!!! Now I feel rested and prepared for the week ahead!

Monday, May 5, 2008


This week has been so sunny and pretty! I had a great score at the thrift store this weekend, I found a Zojirushi Home Bakery Bread Machine! I have a Zojirushi rice cooker, and I love it so much that I still smile when I see it. I really don't know why it ended up there!!!!! I love Zojirushi, and I always wanted their brand of breadmaker, but never had the money for it! I had one when I was about 23 and it didn't work well, so I never really wanted one unless it was this brand, and for some reason it was at Goodwill!

So I happily brought it home, and even though I tested it out at the store, but I thought maybe it would not work halfway through, or something, because this was too good to be true! I did a white bread test run, and it was great, so I feel really lucky!

Here is tuna sandwiches with the new bread!

It was a baking supply score day at the thrift store, because I also bought nice heavy measuring cups and these mini tart tins from Sweden!

Seriously, I scour the baking aisle at my thrift store, and never find stuff like this!!!! There were over 20 in the bag! So I made these Financiers to try them out, and they were good, but I think they were too cake like. I think they were more of an Almond cake, I think I maybe put too much butter in the mix. I know that I have seen a few recipes on blogs that have recipes like these, and that is why I wanted to make something similar, but these were sort made on an impulse and I didn't have time to search, so I think that next time I am going to take the time and do better research!

Here are some shots of our yard, Casey took this Ladybug, I think it is precious!