Wednesday, March 28, 2012

sorry for the slight delay

Hey guys,
School is super busy right now as my professors try to take out their anxieties of spring break coming this Friday. I had a test monday, a paper tuesday, an annotated list tomorrow, and a test friday...oh and class til 9 tonight. Friday can not come soon enough! I will have a break until easter, and then a test that monday we go back! Is there such thing as cruelty towards students? Can I call the campus police for student abuse? Well after the break there is only a few weeks left of school so happy day! I am going to be getting lots of stuff done over the break: like my dishes which have been breeding to claim the majority of our kitchen space, my homework-blah, and my blog! Can't wait to have it all pretty for you guys. It was going to be done sooner, but obviously has had to be put on hold.

FYI: I am on day 16 of my sugar fast woot! I am having serious cravings for strawberry cake and maple syrup (not together, although...drool). On day 21 of my sugar fast I will break it fashionably by baking something delicious and going to town on it :) counter productive? maybe, but at least I can say I did no sugar for that long.

I have been asked if I feel any different for giving up sugar. To be honest nothing incredibly amazing has happened to me. I haven't' noticed a total surge of energy or extreme weight loss. I have noticed that my head is a little more clear, which is hard to judge since school is frying my brain right now. I mostly feel more control over my eating. I have an addictive personality and am not the type of person that can eat 'just one' or a little chocolate a day and be good. If I have a bite I kinda go crazy and can't stop when it comes to sugar. Giving it up and just not having any has helped me from not eating too much especially of something that isn't good for me. Obviously this isn't the best approach because deprivation can cause binging later. To overcome this my strategy will be to go 21 days of no sugar (processed/sweets) then indulge & repeat the cycle. I won't be too strict on it like if its someone's birthday etc. I will see how this goes. I want to be healthy and be my best self. I make it fun by using two jars one with 21 pennies in it and the other is empty. Each day I go with out it I put another penny in the empty jar. Great to show visual progress!

Yay for healthy and I will see you guys during my break! ps like the photos? These are what I am writing my big paper on for my German Expressionism class. They are fashion postcards from the Wiener Werkstatte in Vienna. I am LOVING this paper. This is nerdy of me I know, but seriously they are amazing! Check out the Neue Galerie in NYC if you want to see more about these. I am dying to go there now! Thanks mom and dad for going this week without me!

Friday, March 23, 2012

The Land of Bountiful

This post might seem lame since most of my readers are from Utah, but I find something really funny. I have been noticing that every time I tell people where I am from out here they start giggling. Going to school I have been making friends in my classes (crazy i know). When fraternizing with your fellow classmates the question of where you are from usually pops up. Out here in the midwest I will usually respond with Salt Lake City. If I am feeling descriptive I will say a suburb north of Salt Lake City. When someone is familiar with the area of the beehive state I will say I am from Bountiful, Utah. (teeheehee!) BOUNTIFUL? your're seriously telling me your city is names bountiful? "the land of bounty?" haha yes very funny...?

I guess growing up there the name has never been strange to me. When you think about it though it is a pretty ridiculous name for a place of residence. It isn't as strange as My Large Intestine (Texas, USA) or Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysilio gogogoch (Wales) or Dildo (Newfoundland, Canada). These names are WIERD. (I found them on a top 50 wierdest names of cities forum.-Bountiful was not listed. )

For my friends who think Bountiful is such a funny name here is a little info about the land of bounty. It was settled  on the 27th of September 1847 by Perrigrine Sessions. He was the founder of the second settlement in Utah, and the first white man to make a home in the area now known as Davis County. It was first called Session's Settlement, but the local church ward (north canyon) had the name changed to Bountiful in 1855. They found the name fitting since this area was known as the garden spot of Utah.

Well everyone that is your history of B-Town! Have a great weekend!

ps big improvements are underway on the blog! I can't mention this with out giving my fav cousin elsha rae a shout out! She is going to be helping me big time figuring out this blog stuff. She is amazing! She has impecable style, the smartest, most gorgeous girl I know. She is a ginger and getting murried in June! Love ya girl!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

perfect for a rainy day

Are you tired of always dressing to impress to not getting much in return? Wishing you had something that would snuggle on the couch with you while watching a marathon re-run of america's next top model? Then look no further. Just dig out your giant ramekins, get some puff pastry dough, and GUINNESS*This my friends is that steak and Guinness pot pie I mentioned earlier. It was absolutely delicious. No complaints whatsoever except that I can't eat this everyday without becoming a whale. Try it out! It takes a while so start make it early enough and you will be set.don't skimp on the cheese. go with Irish Dubliner white cheddar.The buttery crust with the bite from the cheddar and Guinness just go down so easliy....and then somehow you eat the whole thing. not something you should make too often, but definitely something to make on a cooler rainy spring day. with the grass going green and rainbows abound you will feel like ye are in de ole land o the irish laddie. Here is the link for Jamie Oliver's recipe that I used.
*disclaimer-I don't drink, but I find no harm in cooking with alcohol. There ya go.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

a green first day of spring

Happy official first day of spring my friends!
I don't know about you guys, but at least in Madison it has felt a lot more like summer and not too springy. Which is unseasonable, insane, unsettling, even scary. I say scary because if it is like this now we will either A: have a scorching hot summer. B: have snow in July. C. just have gorgeous weather forever?!I don't like to think about early spring here. It is mostly cold, wet, and above all else GREY (gray?)meh I like the looks of grey. more fancy). The snow is still melting, it is all gross from dirt and junk, and just not fun. I would show some pictures of Madison in March, but the only photos I have of us in March are from when we were in Spain.Unlike the negative descriptions of March Maddness in Madison, our view for a few weeks was enjoyably like this :) Naranjas.Alhambra was probably my favorite place. So amazing! We walked around the gigantic palace and gardens for hours. Afterwards we had a lovely lunch of pancetta sandwiches at a cafe on a cliff. Then we walked down, down, down the mountain to downtown and walked some more. Lots of walking.

It wasn't always sunny in Spain we had lots of rainy days. You shouldn't feel bad for us though. We pushed through it and somehow had a good time.Whoever said the rain in Spain stays mainly on the plain, has apparently never been to Barcelona in March.

Moving on from Spain before my withdrawals become too hard to bear, Spring in Madison is wonderful this year! I celebrated all things green according to Madison's standards while walking around campus today. I grabbed a green tea frap from starbs for a quick snack before lecture. Watched some protesters sporting their giant metal peace symbols protesting the war while a local band rocked out. Madison doesn't mess around when it comes to practicing your civil rights. Our protesters always put on a good show! Need further example? Look up the protests last year with gov. walker.

Yup I sported all things green for a lovely first day of spring. Green frap, green protests, and green rainboots! Just need some more sun on those albino legs and things here will be just dandy!

Speaking of green we had a great St. Patrick's day. I made Joey rainbow pancakes with green eggs and milk. While I had a green smoothie (remember that sugar fast thing?)
I made Irish soda bread (no raisins or currents) which I ate too fast to get a photo of, but made an extremely delicious grilled cheese sandwich with Dubliner Irish white cheddar cheese for dinner.

Sunday was to be the closing ceremony of Irish celebratory feasting, I made a Guiness and steak Irish stew pot pie. Didn't read the recipe all the way through (which has never happened before?...) and started the stew too late to be able to eat that night. So tonight we are having it since I was on campus til 9 last night. It is Jaimie Oliver's recipe I will let you know how it is after tonight!After a big day of St. Paddies partying we were hungover...from luck of the Irish fun! Joey got this while we were all in our spots on the bed. Which is green...hmm I am sensing a theme here ;)

Hope your Irish festivities were great and that your first day of spring is fresh!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Another View

I, Joey, am writing this post so you can perhaps enjoy a story from our lives that you might never hear.

Jess and I were on our way to a movie last Friday when we made our usual stop at the gas station next to the theater to pick up a few snacks. I grabbed my usuals and met Jess up near the front. I noticed she was was trying to hide her drink from me is a non-nonchalant sort of way that made it even more obvious.
"What's that?" I asked. She grudgingly showed me her sparking water.
"Are you kidding me?" I said. "Only old people drink that stuff. It's disgusting." Then I remembered Jess had started a sugar fast a few days earlier and I laughed at her and her decision that had led to her getting Perrier for our movie.

She put it back because she knew it was gross; she just wanted to convince herself it was good, I imagine because of her irrational love of Europe and their love of the stuff.
We got in the car to head over to the theater.
"You going to blog about it?" I asked.
"About what, my sugar fast?" she said.
"Ya, it seems like perfect blog material." I replied.
"No." she answered. With Jess' recent surge of activity on our blog it didn't make any sense that she wouldn't blog about it.
"What? Why?" I asked
"I dunno, I just don't want to share that with everyone." she said uncertainly. Still not making any sense, I continued.
"You don't want to share that with your 10 viewers?" I said unbelieving.
"Well, yeah, I don't know, and plus there's another blogger that just did a sugar fast..." she continued.
"AHHHHH there it is. I got it." And I laughed at my ability to read her so easily and at the complicated world of blogging (she just informed me that I must have pictures in this post, whatever I'm writing, as that is number 1 rule of blogging).

She wants you to know shes on day 7, and also wants to know if you're impressed.

Also I am going to Rice because they sent me this:

Sunday, March 11, 2012

anyone have any xanax?

I can't sit still around here. I can't stand not knowing where our life is going within the next few months. I need this week to be over asap, and have a solid decision on where joey is going to grad school. It is a huge decision and I respect that but seriously I am dying over here! When contemplating today all of the big changes ahead, I realized I don't really have anything to document these changes with visually. My simple point and shoot camera has finally bit the dust, and the ipod touch strangely doesn't quite get the job done. I am itching for a legit camera. I know a lot of my friends have some sweet ones out there, and I am wondering what you have and what you suggest? Nikon? Cannon? Neither? I love photos, and need to start seriously documenting things. Hope your Sunday was grand! Ours was delicious. mmmm pancakes....and church of course.

on an adorable note Gertie is all cuddled up with me while I type, and she has just the cutest little snore!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

don't mind the noise

i have been experimenting and exploring the html side of my blog. don't mind the awful layouts and things. i will have it all worked out in the near future when i have more time to play around with it. if anyone has tips for me in figuring out stuff with blogger- layouts, buttons, headers, etc. i am all ears! as you can see i am in need of some help.

As for the Platers we had a gorgeous saturday. we slept in, had a delicious breakfast (minus the hashbrowns that i messed up), did some spring cleaning, i ran a billion errands, and we finished off this gorgeous day with a walk with gertie in the super cute nakoma neighborhood...where gertie pooped 3x and we only brought one bag...awkward. i was planning on taking pictures (of the walk not gertie pooping) but spaced it. joey and i were talking about plans for the next few months and how we are going to take on the challenge of moving him to grad school while i stay here for my school, what we are going to do with all our stuff (sell it), the animals etc. lots to plan and lots of stress, but all for another wonderfully exciting chapter in our book of life! (cheesy? probably)

Little perks today: cashing our coins at the bank. joey was thinking $40. I was thinking $70. how about $169?! boom baby! that is some serious quarters! I got to meet my friend's newborn stella at the hospital. had a wendy's frosty at lunch.

i am hoping that sometime next week we will be officially announcing where joey will be going to grad school. he has been accepted to rice which is in houston, but he was also accepted to the u of u. we are expecting the official acceptance package from the u any day now to see about scholarships. we will keep you posted!

which will we pick?

Friday, March 9, 2012

Madison Metro

Good Friday everyone. Does this image relate to you?
It did me too.

I remember in Elementary school you weren't cool unless you rode the bus. It was the best part of the school day riding the bus with your pals goofing around. Our bus even had a cheer when we passed the house with a hummer-don't ask my how I remember that. We felt so cool too when we could be late for class to do a bus fire drill, the principle would catch us as we jumped off the back of the bus. Then a time came when the bus was NOT COOL. It became a topic of total avoidance, a forgotten friend. Pubic transportation was never an option I considered for transportation in my life. I have one memory of riding a public bus. I was with my grandma who lived in Rose Park and we took it to go to the Disney store at Crossroads mall. The End.

When we moved to Madison I saw that public transportation/ riding your bike is a very easy and common thing. There are a million bike paths or lanes that can get you anywhere you want to go. I started riding my bike to school everyday and it is probably my favorite thing to do in Madison. As the semester progressed the air got colder. Snowflakes started to fall, and I remembered that this place is a an arctic wasteland from december-march. In the winter lots of people still ride their bikes (crazies), but I couldn't weather such a feat. -15 degrees with wind, snow, sleet, ice? NO THANK YOU.

winter cycling in Madison looks a little less like this.... ...and a LOT more like this.

I didn't want to drive to campus because that would mean spending 5-10 bucks a day on parking (con of a downtown campus). I decided to get a bus pass (which was free. perk of being a student). I was terrified. I had never ridden on a bus all by myself before! What kind of people rode the bus? What if I get on the wrong bus and end up God knows where? What if someone falls asleep on me? Do you see the sorts of anxiety arise when such audacious things like public transportation have to be considered? I had to put my big girl panties on and get things figured out. I started using maps on my ipod touch in bus mode. It tells me what routes to take, and when the bus comes etc. aka amazingness. Once I started riding the bus I realized it is a piece of cake, and actually really fun! Most of the people on the bus are just students like me, but there are also the cute old ladies, creepers, obese folks in their scooter chairs. Classy. I got a creeper photo bombing in this pic. I will let you know if i am lucky enough to get my scooter chair guy.So riding the bus isn't this glamorous, but it saves me tons of money on parking and gas. I am helping the environment by reducing my driving, and I get to see cute parts of town that I would normally bypass in my commute.

When I ride I feel like this....
...but look more like this-rockin the headphones and listening to my jams!

If you are scared of buses like I was I say give it a try! It could make a fun date night to take the bus into town. Like the saying goes, "getting there is half the fun".Now if we could please get more double deckers in the US that would be great!