Saturday, August 30, 2008

The Omnivore's One Hundred

I’ve seen this on several blogs, and since I have some time on my hands, here’s my list.

These are the instructions:

1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.
4) Optional extra: Post a comment here at linking to your results.

The VGT Omnivore’s Hundred:

1. Venison (it was an accident, in a sausage)
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare
5. Crocodile
6. Black pudding
7. Cheese fondue
8. Carp
9. Borscht
10. Baba ghanoush
11. Calamari
12. Pho
13. PB&J sandwich
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
16. Epoisses
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns
20. Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries
23. Foie gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn, or head cheese

26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper
27. Dulce de leche
28. Oysters
29. Baklava
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl
33. Salted lassi
34. Sauerkraut
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a fat cigar
37. Clotted cream tea (one of my favorite things in the world!)
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O
39. Gumbo
40. Oxtail
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects
43. Phaal
44. Goat’s milk
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
46. Fugu
47. Chicken tikka masala
48. Eel
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut
50. Sea urchin

51. Prickly pear
52. Umeboshi
53. Abalone
54. Paneer
55. McDonald Big Mac Meal
56. Spaetzle
57. Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV
59. Poutine
60. Carob chips
61. S’mores
62. Sweetbreads
63. Kaolin
64. Currywurst
65. Durian
66. Frogs’ legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake
68. Haggis
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette(accidently ordered it in France, the smell alone made me ill)
71. Gazpacho
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost, or brunost
75. Roadkill

76. Baijiu
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
78. Snail
79. Lapsang souchong
80. Bellini
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict
83. Pocky
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant.
85. Kobe beef
86. Hare
87. Goulash
88. Flowers
89. Horse
90. Criollo chocolate
91. Spam
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
94. Catfish
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
98. Polenta
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
100. Snake

Saturday, August 23, 2008


1. Where is your cell phone? next to me
2. Where is your significant other? not sure
3. Your hair color? brown
4. Your mother? Vegas baby!
5. Your father? also in Vegas
6. Your favorite thing? hmmm, reading and teaching
7. Your dream last night? forgotten
8. Your dream/goal? keep teaching and traveling
9. The room you're in? living room
10. Your hobby? travel
11. Your fear? pain
12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? with a doctorate
13. Where were you last night? at home
14. What you're not? stressed
15. One of your wish-list items? more travel
16. Where you grew up? Vegas baby!
17. The last thing you did? went to work
18. What are you wearing? jeans and a tank top
19. Your TV? off
20. Your pet? fat
21. Your computer? laptop
22. Your mood? happy
23. Missing someone? yes
24. Your car? platinum BMW
25. Something you're not wearing? makeup
26. Favorite store? Monsoon in London
27. Your summer? too short
28. Love someone? Yes
29. Your favorite color? red
30. When is the last time you laughed? today
31. Last time you cried? can't remember
32. Who do you want to tag?

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


With only two days left until I'm officially back to school, today was VERY PRODUCTIVE. Went to the grocery store (my cupboard was bare!), did several loads of laundry, made a cake -- from scratch -- for Madison to take to her end-of-summer party at day camp, took Madison shopping for her new school uniforms, and made spaghetti for dinner. AND sat in traffic on the freeway for an hour (that darn uniform shop is not close, and somebody rolled his car while we were shopping). In between, I did some schoolwork -- put paper in folders and printed out some of the things I've created for the new school year. Not a bad day's work!

Still have some schoolwork I want to get done tonight. When I went to the gifted education conference in June, I learned about independent research projects and I want to get some material ready for the kids. I've made a Staples run and have everything I need, just need to put it all together. The Cardinals are on TV and Madison has promised to help me...

Tomorrow is my first day of physical therapy for my knee. My doctor wants to try therapy instead of surgery. I'm all for that. I think tomorrow is more of an evaluation at the therapy place, it's in the same center as the doctor, a sports clinic. I just want to not have any more pain.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Weekend Getaway

Went up to Santa Barbara for the weekend. Just to get was nice. I had never been up there. The downtown was cute, kinda reminded me of Miami, not as vibrant or hip, but it definitely had a 'feel' to it. Quite expensive, shopping-wise. Took Madison to see the mission she did her 4th grade report on -- La Purisima Concepcion. It was about an hour outside of Santa Barbara, near Lompoc. It's the only mission that is a California State Park. I was pleasantly surprised by how clean and nice the mission was. The volunteers all dress in period clothes (early 1800's) and answered all our questions, and gave us a bit of history.

Bought a pair of custom made jeans. Lori mentioned the site on her blog, and I decided to jump in and give it a try. The process seemed very thorough and there is a guarantee on the jeans -- if I don't like them, I can have another pair made or get my money back. The downside will be waiting 4 to 6 weeks for the jeans to arrive. That makes sense, given that they are being made just for me. But still, I'd like them sooner!

Tomorrow I have a one day training on an Intervention Program I volunteered to teach. My district, in an effort to save money, did away with summer school. Instead, we're asking kids to stay after school an hour two days a week for this program, from September until Thanksgiving. No one wanted to teach the program, and I do mean no one. I finally volunteered because I figured there was no way my school year could be any harder than last year, and I know I will do a good job with the kids. Did I just jinx myself by saying my year won't be harder? I hope not!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Dude, you aren't that important

So I'm at this training with a room full of teachers. Most of them are cool. One of them is -- well, full of himself. California went "hands free" with cell phones in cars July 1st. This guy comes into the training wearing his hands free ear piece on his ear. And he keeps it on ALL DAY. He hasn't received one call but that doesn't matter -- the ear piece stays on...

I can see wearing an ear piece if a person's job requires them to be on the phone. Or if an important call is expected. But to keep it on all day? And never get a call? Come on. Get over yourself. You aren't that important. Really. If you are expecting a call, put your cell phone on vibrate, like the rest of us.

We're sitting by grade level and my grade level happens to be in the back so I have a view of the back of this guy's head. ALL DAY LONG. Yesterday, the guy sitting next to me asked, "Is he wearing his Bluetooth? Are you kidding me?" so I'm not the only one annoyed. Can you tell I'm about done with the training? It's only day 4...I have the rest of today and all day tomorrow to go...SIGH!!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


I'm attending a week long reading training this week with my friend Carol. Carol was my first friend at work, 15 years ago, and we have continued to be good friends both in and out of work. The training is at a local university and goes all day, Monday through Friday. Breakfast and lunch is included, and Carol and I have been meeting for breakfast each day. It's been nice to catch up with Carol -- she has a terrific sense of humor and is just plain FUN. This morning I decided to 'do' my hair and make-up -- the whole nine yards. Carol said, "You look great! Are you sure you aren't going on a date instead of here?" Ha! She made me feel good. I used my new Too Faced eye shadow insurance, Laura Gellar eye shadow, Too Faced mascara, Michael Marcus Prime and powder, Michael Marcus blush, and Michael Marcus lip gloss. The Michael Marcus items I bought at Takashimaya in New York City and the rest is from Sephora.

Other than that, the training is -- well, draining. I've taught the reading program for several years and most of the material is review. There have been several nuggets of information I can take back, but they are few and far between. The best part is meeting new people. There are 26 people in my session (Carol is in a different session, she teaches a different grade level), none of whom teach at my school, so everyone is new to me.

My "welcome back to work" letter came in the mail today. I officially report back to school next Thursday. WHERE DID THE SUMMER GO?? After this LOOONG week, I have a single day training Monday (on an after-school intervention program I volunteered to teach) and then Tuesday and Wednesday off...then back to work....fall is coming!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

In Vegas and an Award...

I'm in Vegas for the weekend. It's been pretty uneventful except for my sixteen year old niece acting up. Is that typical teenage angst? Who knows. She has never been typical and this time she posted things on her MySpace page that, really -- she should not be posting. And if the things she put out there are true? Wow.

Are you watching the Olympics? I'm loving them, even the events I don't usually like.

Thank you to Heather at Chasing Butterflies for the award! Love it! So much that I put it on the side bar -- it might be the only award this blog ever wins! I'm supposed to nominate other blogs, but I don't like to do that (sorry Heather!). The buck stops here, I guess.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Eight Things

Saw this on Mindy's blog...eight things I want to accomplish before I die:

1. Raise Madison, my beautiful 10 year old daughter.

2. That doctorate's calling my name, I just need to step up and get to it. The program at USC seems like a perfect fit. My entire life, I've wanted to get a doctorate degree. This academic year, I'm taking a series of four courses (also at USC) on teaching gifted students -- that would give me time to take the GRE, get my portfolio together, gather references -- and be ready to START the doctorate program next fall. I can do it!

3. Own an apartment in New York City. Just a small one. A studio would be fine. I love New York City. Just love it. And I'd love to have a place there, some place of my own.

4. Visit Morocco. For some reason, this seems so exotic and far-fetched. I've been to Europe so many times, but Morocco? Hmmm....definitely on my list of "I want to, someday..."

5. Attend a World Series game that the St. Louis Cardinals are playing in. I've been to regular season games. Division Series games. League Championship games. But never the Big Dance.

6. Spend each summer doing things I love. Last summer was Paris and London (with a bit of New York City thrown in). This summer? West Palm Beach. Next summer? Already talking about Eastern Europe and winding back through Paris. One of the joys of teaching is long stretches of summer off -- and I need to commit to taking advantage of that.

7. Visit the College Football Hall of Fame. I can only do that if I attend a USC Trojans football game at the University of Notre Dame, because for sure I won't be in South Bend for any other reason! I went to the 2005 game in South Bend, a whopper of a game, and I don't know if any experience could top that -- but I'd love to go back. For sure on my list.

8. Go to Greece, to visit the land of my ancestors. Catina Nicolopous (my great-grandmother) came to this country in 1914, at the age of 22, from Greece. I have the records from Ellis Island, but I'd love to stand at the port in Greece and see the ocean from that side of the world.

Monday, August 4, 2008


What is it with people? People who change plans, who call you up and say "Oops, sorry, know that thing we were supposed to do? Can't make it. Let's reschedule." Uh huh. And then, after a time or two of not making the rescheduling, when you are finally DONE with the whole thing -- said person gets annoyed with YOU for being over it. Yeah. What's with those people?

To make myself feel better, I made the ultimate comfort food lunch (for me). Growing up in Las Vegas, the best lunch/dinner/breakfast/whatever was a toasted cheese tortilla. Just cheddar cheese on a flour tortilla, in the broiler. Today I fancied it up with a sliced avocado after it came out. Oh yeah!

And to make myself feel EVEN BETTER, I think I'm going to take a weekend in September (I have two from which to choose) and fly to St. Louis to see my beloved Cardinals. I can fly out Saturday morning, catch an evening game, stay the night, see a Sunday afternoon game, and fly home Sunday night. Doesn't that sound perfect for me?!

Went to work today for three hours and put paper on the walls. One thing I hate about changing classrooms is how the room doesn't feel like me. After today, it's starting to...I'm planning on another visit this week. Maybe two more. Next week I have training and the week after that (on Thursday) it's back to work...