Another Awkward Week [4.11.14]

Good morning everyone! What is up? What is the 4-11? GET IT?! Because it's April 11? 4-11?

No?

Whatever. I think it's funny! God, I crack myself up. WHAT A COMEDIENNE!!

How was everyone's week? I had these amazing intentions to blog up a STORM but...looks like that didn't happen. Whoops. But I definitely thought about it so that counts, right?

Next week! There's always next week!

And what's up for the weekend? I'm going to New Jersey tonight to meet a friend for dinner and then returning to Brooklyn and then going back to New Jersey tomorrow for a wedding (First of 9 for 2014!) so it should be quite the whirlwind. I was actually in New Jersey last weekend, too, visiting another friend.

Basically just call me JWoww. I'm all about that Jerz.

And now, because I'm writing this on Friday AM while I should be working, as I chose TV and painting my nails over blogging last night (I mean...partying! I was partying!) so I need to be quite quick about this. Let's take a look back at what was keeping it awkward this week.

 

This Hairspray:

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I am a total sucker for coupons and customer reward bonuses. I know they're basically a huge marketing scam but consider me scammed. If you mark something 2 for 1 or coupon it up I will probably buy it. Especially cosmetic products. I don't know the reasoning behind this but I am ALL IN for discounted lotions and sprays.

This week I had to go to CVS to pick up a prescription and oh look, also had $2.50 extra bucks on my ExtraCare Card (copyright CVS, probably) plus a whole bunch of coupons so I RACED over there and loaded my arms with discounted products: three canisters of shave gel, a family pack of toothbrushes (Brian's VERY particular about fresh tooth brushes like, every week. He's so weird!) and two canisters of my favorite hairspray, marked down to buy one, get one 50% off. BOOM.

My arms were full to the brim and I probably should have gotten a basket but I always think it's kind of weird to get a basket at the drugstore, I don't know why, don't ask. Maybe I just have PTSD for accidentally stealing one that one time?

At any rate long story SO SO extra long, I was waiting in the check-out line, my arms laden with ozone destroying aerosol canisters when a bottle of hairspray fell out of my arms and hit the ground causing the lid to pop off and HIT A BABY STROLLER.

I repeat: HIT A BABY STROLLER.

Ok just the wheel, no one was injured but they could have been!

And now I need to find space in my apartment for my 97 canisters of shave gel and hair spray.

This Umbrella:

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I left my umbrella at my friend's house over the weekend (housewarming gift for the Manley's!). It rained on Monday and Brian unearthed this bad boy from the depths of his closet. It worked for about 2.2 seconds until it oh, so didn't.

I needed to grocery shop on Monday after work and was planning to stop home, drop off my gym bag, pick up my reusable shopping bags and go to the nice grocery store a few blocks away from my apartment. But my commute home was a mess and I got impatient and decided I'd just get out a stop earlier than my usual and go to the other, grosser, lamer store on the way to my house, just to save time.

Huge mistake.

For some reason I thought it would be a good idea to buy the heaviest foods - canned beans, potatoes, gallons of milk - on the day I didn't have any sturdy bags, so on my walk home I somehow had to juggle six extremely heavy plastic bags, all on the verge of breaking, plus my gym bag, plus my umbrella, which essentially snapped in half one second after I walked out of the door, so that I was basically holding a stick with a floppy napkin above my head.

I struggled the short walk back to my apartment. Two blocks away from home a nice gentleman did stop to ask if I needed help but I was close enough to make it, so I declined. One block away from my house a less nice gentleman saw how burdened I was, shook his head and said "sorry."

Sorry?! FOR WHAT?! Are you going to offer to help? Put up or shut up, my fine friend.

I finally made it to my door where I abandoned the groceries at the bottom of the steps and demanded that my nice gentleman go bring them up for me.

What a mess.

Semi related, I just stopped in the drug store next to my office to buy a new umbrella, as today's forecast calls for rain and that green number certainly isn't going to cut it. They usually have a big display out but today I could only find one. I got to the register and the cashier told me the umbrella + tax came to $32.

WHAT THE WHAT. I told her to "cancel that order" and ran out of the store.

This Ensemble:

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I'm LOVING this warm weather, don't get me wrong, but it's hard to know exactly how to dress for days when it's 30 degrees colder in the morning than it is at lunch time. So I'm taking the layered approach: cardigan over a cardigan made infinitely sexier by the Melanie-Griffith-in-Working-Girl bright white sneakers for my commute.

Also This Other Ensemble:

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Was racing around to get to a work event when I managed to squirt under eye concealer all over my shirt. Turns out, the one thing concealer does not conceal is itself.

This Pudding:

As you know, I love a good superfood as much as the next cliched blogger and chia seeds are still pretty much the hottest thing going. I've been trying to cut down on my sugar intake, so when I saw recipes popping up for sugar free, dairy free chia seed pudding, I was all about that life.

I found a recipe via A Beautiful Mess that promised to be easy. Simply mix chia seeds, coconut milk, vanilla extract and a pinch of salt in a bowl or glass. Chill for a while and boom: delicious, healthy dessert.

If done right, it should look like the photo above.

Mine looked a little more like this:

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And tasted horrible. The milk never really thickened and the seeds stayed crunchy and it was just like, a bowl of the worst seedy, watery puddingy grossness you ever ate in your whole life.

And by ever ate I mean, literally ate because even thought it was grotesque, I still ate about half the bowl. WHY. Why oh why?

I'm still not giving up on the chia pudding though, guys. If at first you don't succeed, etc etc etc. Eating trendy healthy foods not only makes my body feel better but also helps me maintain a sense of superiority over others (real talk) so I will perfect this recipe if it's the last thing I do.

Foodie pals - help a sister out!

Also, for the record, I know now that Almond Breeze non dairy milks have carageenan in them which is apparently horrible for you and to be avoided but none of the other non carageenan-filled brands had unsweetened milk and I couldn't decide if artificial sweeteners were worse than carageenan so I just panicked and went with what I know I like. It was very stressful. Eating healthy is really hard! And I'm a yuppie white lady who is obsessed with reading about food so imagine how much more difficult it must be for people without access to all of the resources I have to obtain the right foods.

Just something to think about! Friday morning rant!

SHUT. IT. DOWN.

And that was my week. I don't think any of these stories made much sense but you know what? Life doesn't make sense. All I know is, it's Friday, I'm having a great hair day, and if I don't get to work like, immediately, I am in deep trouble. So the end!

Have a most spectacular weekend, my fine friends! Don't forget to pack a (working!) umbrella!

xoxoxo Liz Ho

Another Awkward Week [4.4.14]

Good morning, everyone! How's your day? Mine is already off to a very ... Liz-esque start. I wasted like 30 minutes this morning dealing with a hard-boiled egg situation. It's been what, like 2 weeks since I've done something weird involving eggs?

Basically I needed breakfast this morning and didn't want to buy because I'm trying to be responsible with my cash flow these days and I remembered I needed to make an egg for right before I wanted to leave for work, so I put it on the stove and finished getting ready and then remembered that hardboiled eggs need to chill before you eat them and how can I simultaneously chill and transport my egg this morning?

Option one: ziploc bag full of ice...leaked.

Option two: ice water in a tupperware container that guess what? Leaked.

Option three: This was the clever one - I'd fill my water bottle up with water, drop in the egg, drop in a couple of ice cubes et voila! A handy dandy egg-transporter-cooler. Except when I dropped in the egg it broke and then I realized my water bottle, which I like to drink from, was now filled with eggwater and the egg was inedible so the last 30 minutes were a waste and oh, look, I'm going to be late for work and still don't have breakfast.

And after all that, I'm out an egg and the five dollars I then spent on a breakfast sandwich. Worth it. Also, patent pending on an egg cooler transporter - it seems like an item EVERYONE needs in their life!

Anyhoodle - GOOD MORNING KITTENS!! Happy April! Were any of you fools this week? My roommate pulled a good one:

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Tee hee! Brian went to bed before I did the night of 4/1 and when I went in to use the lav before bed, I found the toilet lid shut. I didn't suspect a thing and surprise! Balloon! Good one, prankster.

And it's a prank that keeps on giving because, oh yes, that balloon is still sitting on the floor of our bathroom. We are nothing if not deeply committed to keeping a tidy home.

Le sigh.

Ok, I'll stop rambling about eggs and things and cut right to it. Let's take a look at what was keeping it awkward this week!

This Week's Spill:

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Black & white striped dress. Where do you think the salad dressing landed?

YUP.

This Bar:

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Last night one of my favorite authors was in town and we met for a drink - she also reads this blog. I'm really blurring the line between personal and professional these days. Whoops.

Anyway.

We met at this kind of hip (I guess??) bar in the West Village called The Other Room. It was a gorgeous night (FINALLY!!!) and the few seats set up outside the bar were taken when we arrived, but we were lucky to get second best: two seats at a little counter at the big front window. Score.

Except...maybe not. We got the sense right away that we were not exactly welcomed by the hipper than thou bartender. We asked for the cocktail list and he informed us they only sold wine, beer, port and sake. Port and sake. OH NYC you're the worst. We were struggling to order our wines without fully butchering the pronunciation (something called "gwendochino blanc, or something?") when another patron rolled in, an attractive woman with a serious 'tude. She was clearly upset that all the good seats were taken and complained openly about it to the bartender in the way that girls who think they're funnier and cuter than they are often do, a little too loudly, pretending they're 'just joking haha!" but actually quite seriously believe they deserve preference.

For the record, in case you can't pick up the subtlety, I do NOT find this charming.

"I wanted to sit outside." She told the bartender. "Can I at least sit at the window."

"Someone else took those seats," he replied with a shrug and disdainful look in our direction.

they both stared at us...trying to get us to move?

We muttered apologies, awkwardly chugged our grmuncmody blancs.

"Just wait it out til they get up and leave" the bartender said.

They (WE!) continued to gulp our wine as the bartender and Ms. Hot Shit talked loud and proud about how soon, so soon, "they" (we!) would just get up and vacate the premises.

It was overall a welcoming, warm and inviting bar!

And in the re-reading I'm realizing this might be one of those "you had to be there" kind of stories but sadly you were not there so you'll just have to go right on ahead and trust me and maybe just politely laugh a little bit to make me feel OK?

THANKS!

This Dress:

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Wrap dresses. They're all fun and games and figure flattery until the top won't stay shut, no matter the fact that you've afixed it to your bra with a spare bobby pin and multiple, and I mean MULTIPLE, of your coworkers have to casually pull you aside and politely whisper "Liz your, um...top" while trying not to stare at your exposed hooter.

This Picture:

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My camera must have gone off at some point? One hundred* dollars to the person who can correctly guess what this might be.

(* zero)

These Manicure Tools:

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I have a terrible habit (only one!) of biting and picking at my nails and cuticles. I know it is unattractive and unhygienic and all around gross but I love it and can't stop.

Brian's a biter too and we've realized we really need to curb this scene before the wedding - our photog will try to take those cute romantic shots of our brand new wedding bands and there will just be blood dripping everywhere. We can't have that.

So! Per a recommendation from Brian's sister (hi Emily!) I've been trying to use this Essy Apricot Cuticle Oil as a replacement - whenever I want to bite, I slather on the cuticle oil and it keeps my nails from getting ragged. Also it makes me smell delicious!

I also keep a bottle of clear topcoat at my desk because it's super appropriate and professional to paint your nails in your office (false). Earlier this week I week I slathered up my fingers with cuticle oil and thought something felt off - it was kind of thick and gloopy and OH WAIT, I just painted all over my fingers with nailpolish.

Thankfully it was clear?!

And that, my pals, was my week! How was yours? What's everyone up to this weekend? I'm reuniting with my college roomies at our friend's brand new house in New Jersey (adulthood!!) and we're going to gossip so effing hard, the world might collapse. I can't even pretend like we're going to discuss smart, valuable life stuff because we're super not. We're just going to dish on people we went to college with (maybe even YOU?!?!) and celebrities (I'm deeply concerned for Zac Efron) and drink so much wine and it's going to be Tony the Tiger style GRRRRREAT!

April Showers, May Flowers & Plenty O Pilgrims to you and yours, my fine friends. Have a great weekend!

xoxo Liz Ho

Another Awkward Week [3.28.14]

Hey you guys! What's up? How was everyone's week. Mine was very weddingy which is now a real word, in the OED, look it up, fools. Seriously, though, this week was a veritable nuptial extravaganza. Tuesday I went bridesmaid dress shopping and  Wednesday Brian & I went suit shopping (more on both of those below!) and last night I went to a Wedding Expo which was...definitely something! It was a real thing.

Quick backstory, I'm working on this fantastic book coming out in May called Save the Date: The Occasional Mortifications of a Serial Wedding Guest by Jen Dollwhich is amazing. I very rarely actually talk about my books here because I don't want the authors to get like, a google alert and read this and realize what a freak their publicist is BUT I already know that both the author (hi, Jen!) and editor (hi, Ali!) a) read this blog and b) know I'm a total freak so it's all good. Also good? The book, so you should probably just go ahead and pre-order it riiiiiight now.

Jen was invited to attend the New York Magazine Wedding Expo and thought: "who could I invite to join me who is engaged and will do anything for a story and some free wine?" The answer was crystal clear. And thus, Jen & I found ourselves in a chic event space in Chelsea at 4:45 PM on a Thursday sipping white wine and stuffing our tote bags with swag.

 

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The expo was super nice but also suuuuper overwhelming. There were tons of people all about, including one woman whose job it was to walk around in a slinky wedding gown carrying a sign advertising the designer and DJ's playing loud party music and hoardes of women roaming in packs - many of whom brought their baby strollers which, like, I don't judge the carriage before the marriage, you do you, but why did you bring your baby here? I know it's tough to get a sitter but like, is this really the establishment where you want to be carting around a toddler? Possibly no.

Like any trade show there were just booths and booths and booths of vendors and everyone had some kind of treat (macrons! mini cakes! LOBSTER ROLLS!) to lure you to stop and peruse their wares and most also had some kind of opportunity to register for a giveaway, which we did with wild abandon. I can't remember everything I signed up to win but the list included:

  • false eyelashes
  • lingerie
  • cake pops
  • skin treatment
  • a full set of bridesmaid dresses (!)
  • earrings
  • engagement photos
  • dance lessons (!!)

I have yet to receive any calls or emails so I'm assuming I won nothing but I am really holding out hope on those dance lessons.

Just kidding. NIGHTMARE.

Finally we reached that point where we were so overwhelmed with people and stimuli and people that we just sort of crashed and had to run for the door.

I also experience this emotion when visiting art museums or shopping at Forever 21.

I'm really glad we went and do think I saw some valuable stuff, but can't possibly imagine actually going to one of those as an outlet for getting wedding ideas like, right at the beginning. The sheer volume of options and images made my head spin.

Just like Brian and I will spin on the dance floor when we win those tango lessons. Come on, phone, ring, damn it, RING!

Ok, enough. This is already a novel and I've barely even scratched the surface. Let us take a look at what (else!) was keeping it awkward this week:

This Microwave:

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First of all please ignore that pile of cardboard recycling in the corner, I know we need to dispose of that!

Second of all, do take note of the smashed glass on the floor below said microwave. That is the glass tray that came with the microwave, smashed into a zillion little pieces after I knocked it out while removing my microwaveable heating pad because I am 86 years old.

Easy solution: register for a new microwave!

Except: This belongs with the apartment, WHOOPS.

So now I have to track down and purchase a very specific microwave tray lest we lose our security deposit over this.

Luckily I am already pretty skilled in purchasing wholesale kitchen appliance parts thanks to the time I broke a glass shelf in the refrigerator of my first apartment in Brooklyn by dropping a heavy container of leftover Thanksgiving food on it.

Liz Ho: destroying one rental kitchen at a time!

These Dresses:

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Front runners for the bridesmaids! I will give you a WHOLE long and detailed story about the endless search for bridesmaid dresses, made extra endless by my deep passion for over-thinking and making everything 80 billion times more complicated than necessary but for now, a tiny tale.

Kathleen and I went to Bella Bridesmaid in Midtown on Tuesday night to check out some options (it was a really nice boutique with a pretty great selection and good customer service, just FYI if this applies to you) and while we were looking through the racks with our assigned stylist, we suddenly heard the sound of crying coming from one of the dressing rooms.

And by crying I mean like weeping. Like heaving sobs. Like me watching Les Mis hysterics.

I mean...bridesmaid dress shopping is stressful but...? YIKES pull yourself together, man!

It turns out it may have actually been a staff member crying over some kind of personal life drama which makes me feel a little bad for judging but whatever the reason behind the tears, it does not erase how painfully awkward it was for the three of us to resume rifling through brightly colored chiffon, acting like nothing was amiss, to the soundtrack of violent sobbing.

AAAAH.

Also did I make a final decision on bridesmaid dresses yet? Probably! Or not. Just ... don't ask.

This Corner:

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I worked out over lunch the other day and when I came back, managed to spill my entire (full!) water bottle on my office floor, right next to a stack of book boxes. I saw the water encroaching on the box of delicate paper books and panicked, looking around the room for some sort of towel with which I might mop up the spill before it ruined our product.

I got the brilliant idea to use my gym clothes BUT I had my fancy stuff that day and they're all made out of some kind of fancy like, sweat repelling material so they weren't really absorbing the giant lake I created (thanks for nothing, Under Armor) BUT the dirty underwear I had just worn to workout were, in fact, cotton, so I mopped up the spill with a pair of underwear.

It made complete sense at the time, for some reason, but then I though about it later and remembered that in our office we have both a kitchen AND a bathroom, both of which are resplendent with paper towels, products which are designed for the sole purpose of absorbing liquids.

And instead I used my underpants.

WHAT is wrong with me? So very very VERY many things.

I must have been a clutz-o-rama that day because later that evening, I met Brian at ...

This Suit Shop:

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My groom and I went out on an expedition to find a suit for him for our wedding and a co-worker recommended this classy place in SoHo called Suit Supply. She assured us they were known for slim cut suits for slim cut fellows and at a good price point.

And she was right! Despite the semi douche vibe of their website (just...ignore those photos) the place was straight up classy and the customer service was outstanding. They helped Brian find a really REALLY good looking suit  and suggested some matching options for his groomsmen, recommended shoe stores, tie colors, etc.

Meanwhile I just followed Brian around making lascivious comments about his butt. It was weird. I felt like someone's creepy sugardaddy (except let's be real, I'm not paying for this). Like, you always hear stories about rich men taking hot women shopping and then just creepily watching them try on sexy clothes and suddenly I understand the appeal. By the time I half-jokingly but mostly seriously asked Brian to "take off his jacket and sling it over his shoulder like he was in a catalog" I realized I miiiiight be out of control.

But seriously, wedding guests, you're in for a treat with this suit. That booty is A+!

Oh, and also while I was there they offered me a glass of water and OBVIOUSLY I spilled the entire thing on the floor and almost used my scarf to mop it up before anyone saw but luckily someone stopped me before I ruined yet another piece of clothing doing what a paper towel could do so much better.

Then later, I pulled my wallet out of my pocket to put in the stylist's business card and dropped a panty liner on the floor right in front of him. Smooth.

Those were the actual points of this story, but then I got sidetracked being creepy about butts.

You know me!

Shut it down, Liz. Shut it down.

And that's that! What are you guys up to this weekend? I was supposed to go hiking but now it's going to rain all weekend (don't even get me started on you, Mother Nature!) so now we're searching for an indoor urban adventure instead. Any suggestions?

Have the funnest weekend, whatever you do, and if you enter any weird raffles, I sure hope you win!

xoxoxo Liz

Another Awkward Week [3.14.14]

Happy Pi Day, nerds! We at the Scottenadel household celebrated in style: 20140314_080626

Of course we have a Pi Day mug. Marrying a math teacher has its perks!

(PS look at that face! Such a studmuffin, I can't even handle it.) (PSS: sorry! Can't help myself!)

How was everyone's week? Mine was fine! I feel like it was fast? I can barely remember what happened! A blur of wildly vacillating temperatures and Buzzfeed Quizzes. I just took this one: Which Queen of Comedy Are You and got Julia Louis Dreyfus! I feel pretty OK about that.

Who are you?!

Let's move it right on along, Comedy Queens, and take a look at what was keeping it awkward this week.

This Bathroom:

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The ladies' room in our office is a complete hellscape - the toilets never seem to be flushed and there's always mysterious water all over the ground and the lighting in the mirror area makes everyone look like extras from The Walking Dead. The worst.

Also, the locks on the stall doors never seem quite secure, like, for example, this week when I was doing my thang and the stall door next to me slammed a little bit, the momentum of which slipped my door right out of the locked position and started swinging it open.

NIGHTMARE OF NIGHTMARES.

I managed to stop it & slam it back shut before anyone saw anything too graphic but YIKES. There is no safe space in this world! I would consider  taking a pay cut (jk never) if it meant budget to fix this bathroom, it is truly a palace of horrors. 

This Snack:

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We had a pizza lunch at work the other day and a noon I was staaaarving, so I confirmed with my assistant what time we were eating. If it was 1 PM, I'd eat my healthy apple. If it was 12:30, I'd hold out.

12:30 it was! I'd hold out.

Until I went into my office & spotted the bag of Doritos leftover from our Valentines' Day Chip & Dip Extravanga hidden in a corner where I'd stashed them February 15 to avoid shoving them all in my face in a fit of madness. But oh no: the fit of madness had snuck in anyway! I took one handful, re-hid the bag and got to work.

Then snuck back for one more handful! And then just...one...more...and then I shut my office door and hid at my desk hoovering Doritos until Margaret knocked and walked in to announce the pizza had arrived and caught me red-handed.

Err...orange handed. Literally.

And then later that night, this happened...

This Photo:

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That horrible moment when you turn on your camera and realize it's still switched to selfie mode and you see what your real face look like in repose.

ALL the yikes in the world can't even begin to describe this.

This Laundry:

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Remember how proud I was last week of my Mental Health Day on Monday (Otherwise known as "take-a-break-before-you-shiv-somebody" day per Ross or "lay in bed with your fiance like the grandparents from Willie Wonka" according to my friend Danny) and how I did all that laundry? WELL said laundry hung to dry in our living room for a cool 6 days later until someone (me) finally put it away.

I guess I just need to take another mental health day ... one to do the laundry...and then one to fold it. One to put it away. One to iron the fancy stuff. One to rest after all that work. Oh look, I'm retired! Goodbye, corporate world, you've been real.

This Sink:

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Last week I went to not one but two different Asian restaurants and both of them had really fancy sinks. I'm not trying to racially generalize here, I'm just sayin' that was some rad sinnkage.

The first place was a terrible and I mean TERRIBLE estalishment in Chinatown that served undercooked pork dumplings and probably poisoned us all. Their sink was bright blue and shiny, it looked like it was made with ferrari material, and you turned on the water using a joystick. A literal joystick, like you'd use for videogames. It was awesome.

The second place was a delish Sushi spot in Park Slope that I love to visit except whenever I get sushi I eat wahaaaay too much because it seems like it won't fill you up and then wham it totally does and  then Brian's like "hey it's Friday, let's get busy" and I have to be like "no to the way, Jose." There is nothing less of an aphrodisiac than a stomach full of sushi. Is it just me? Is this 15,000% too much information? ALWAYS.

Anyway, their sink is the art deco delight pictured above. It had a regular handle that you flipped up to turn the water on and then moved side to side to change the temperature. How you turn it off is a total mystery to me. I stood in the bathroom for several minutes turning the knob left, right, up down, front to back side to side and the water just kept on running, so I left it run, went back to the table, got my phone, took this photo, moved it around some more and finally, miracle of miracles, the water stopped.

It wasn't just me, I'm happy to report. My friend went in after me and she TOO had issues working the sink so we're blaming it allll on the mechanics of the sink. We're perfect.

Semi related, I'm now majorly jonesing for some eel avocado. Is 9:15 AM too soon? What do Japanese people eat for breakfast?

Life is full of questions!

Aaaand I'm done before I start sharing more weird information about my intimate life and / or inappropriate breakfast cravings. What's new with you chickies? Any big weekend plans? ST PATRICK'S DAY! Get that green beer y'all.

Luck o' the Awkward,

Liz Ho

Another Awkward Week [3.7.14]

Guten Morgen, Jorgens! That might be German...might be gibberish. How was everyone's week? Mine was fast and productive, just the way I like it, wink. Sorry, gross.  I actually played hooky on Monday...except it was my boss's idea (apparently my fragile emotional state is more obvious that I'd like to admit?!) (don't worry, I'm finally seeking profesh help...more on that later) (parenthesis!) so it was less hooky and more approved personal day but, tomato tomahto. It was amazing. I slept in, until 8:30, which is late for me, did 4 loads of laundry, including our kitchen floor mat which, do you guys wash your kitchen mats?? How often? I think this was the first time since we moved in last August yiiiiikes. I did a little writing, which I promise you'll see soon, cooked a healthy meal, cleaned out my closet, caught up on Scandal, it was divine.

I then came back to work on Tuesday and have been Getting. Shit. Done. Boom!

So! If you can get away with it, professionally sanctioned or no, I'd highly recommend sneaking in a mental health slash get your life together day. I feel so much more on top of everything, calmer, clearer-headed. It's a miracle!

Never fear, though, productive certainly does not mean smooth, so why don't we go to the tapes & take a look at what was keeping it awkward this week.

This Dinner:

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Did y'all know that yesterday was the 50th Anniversary of the Invention of the Buffalo Wing? Move over Wright Brothers, Steve Jobs, etcetera...Teressa Bellissamo is truly America's greatest inventor.

As you know, I love buffalo wings almost as much as I love my own family, but I didn't know about this anniversary until late yesterday afternoon, when my friend Kathleen emailed me a link and suggested we should celebrate. I told her I wouldn't be able to last night...

Why? She asked?

I had to go home and put away my laundry...and I had turkey defrosting that I really should cook so...

29 going on 64.

Shut it down.

Kathleen helpfully stepped in with a You're in your 20's, Childless, in one of the Greatest Cities in America, Live a Little Intervention, and we celebrated like kings! Greasy, meat-eating kings.

It's important to surround yourself with good friends who will remind you how lame you are.

These Boots:

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Reason #19086 this godforsaken winter needs to come to an end: I have actual holes in the bottom of my shoes. I look like I just stepped out of, like, Angela's Ashes. I'm too cheap/lazy/sick of winter apparel to get a new pair so...hurry on up, spring, there's snow seeping into my socks!

This Still Life, With Garbage:

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Last night I spilled some water in my purse, as one does, and when I dumped out the contents to dry them off, realized I had a lot of, shall we say, useless trash floating around in there.

I am always fascinated by these clearly staged bits that fashion mags do with celebrities where they ask them what's inside their handbag and the answer is always like, La Mer Handcream (is that even a thing?) and some antique gilded compact mirror that their great-grandmother got from Marie Antoniette herself and 3-5 shades of Nars Lipstick and exactly zero old bandaids or anything a (hopefully?!) normal person might carry around and even though I know it's all fakey-fake, I can't help feeling a little blue about my own nice possessions, or lack thereof. No Mas!

Wihtout further ado, here's what I, Liz Ho, Normal Person, carry around in MY handbag:

Basically L-R, from the top:

Row 1: Pack of tissues printed to look like a snowman, PILE of used tissues, cortisone cream for bug bites, a pile of work papers and on top of them a plastic mermaid and a plastic cactus that were put in my margarita a happy hour many weeks ago and I thought were cute so I took them home, wallet

Row 2: post-it note from one of my many trips to the T-Mobile store where I apparently practiced writing my current name and possible married name in cursive (busted!), two notebooks, one of which started as an old food journal during my cleansing days so in between to-do lists are lists of what I ate and when and then also the exit portion of the digestive process; a salt grinder from Trader Joe's, ONE nude knee high stocking

Row 3: Shout Wipes, hair clips, a packet of bandaids + a few floaters, my blackberry which has not worked in weeks and I keep meaning to get fixed but I love the feeling of freedom that comes from not being able to use it, a travel container of earplugs, my kindle (currently reading a new Sarah Waters novel, coming in September!), on top of the Kindle we have a paring knife which Brian saw and asked me why I was carrying around a shiv,  and a number of old reciepts, several of which are from the wine store

Row 4: An assortment of feminine hygiene products, a promotional screen cleaner that my mom got at a conference and put in my stocking, used Amtrak ticket, stub from a reimbursement check from work, some kind of letter from the health insurance company

Row 5: expired Starbucks gift card, smashed piece of caramel, two empty birth control packets + one currently in rotation, one zillion pens, old nail file that is too worn down to file

Annnnnd THERE YA HAVE IT! What's in YOUR purse? I'm seriously dying to know. The Hairpin did a great series of this a few years ago...let's start another!

This Gift:

Ok...I need to start this with some text & lead up to the good stuff.

I've mentioned our landlady here, she of the amazing decor, and I fear I've come off snarkier than I mean to be. I genuinely treasure her, she's been a fantastic landlord and I appreciate living in the most festive house on the block. We're going to have to move this year, a fact which I will discuss with you later, as I am currently repressing it, so I think we're all getting a little sentimental.

Por ejemplo, Connie is super excited that we're getting married, which is adorable, and this past weekend, I opened our apartment door to find a gift bag hanging on the handle.

What could it be?! 'Twas a gift from Connie.

I first pulled out a beautiful card in a silver envelope , reading "Elizabeth & Brian, I'm going to miss you guys...as you see, I'm making a prediction..."

A prediction?!

From the bag, I pull two frames, wrapped in tissue. The first, a gorgeous, sparkly silver frame, the kind in which you might put your formal wedding photos. I love it!

The second, well, see for yourself:

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Guessing the prediction is baby related? No pressure. I thought the baby questions would wait until at least a day or so after the wedding.

I told a friend about this last night & she said now I'll probably think of Connie every time we're getting busy. Hadn't taken it that far, pal, but now I sure will. Hopefully those multiple packets of BC I've been carrying around do their job and this predic doesn't come true for many, many a year.

I do tease, but seriously how sweet is this? Commence WHY MUST WE MOVE?!?! panic in 4-3-2-1...AAAH!

And that, good sirs, was my week! What are you all up to this weekend? Conceiving some children, maybe? Good luck with that! I'm going to a work event tonight (voluntarily! Toldja I was on the up & up!), hopefully running outside, as the temps may finally rise above 31 farenheit, and Briguy and I may possibly do a little wedding gift registering so fire up those credit cards, America, mama needs a new paring knife, she's been using hers as a shiv!

Hoping you have a delightful weekend, whatever it may entail and don't forget to Spring Forward!

xoxoxo Liz Ho

Another Awkward Week [2.28.14]

Hello, buttercups! How was everyone's week? I'm feeling moderately scattered but really, really looking forward to putting February behind us. March is already promising to ROAR in like a lion with a snowstorm this weekend but, like I've said many a time before, complaining about the weather is bo-ring soooo I'll just do that silently and start working on a little voodoo dance to bring on the sunshine and warm weather.

I'll video-tape it, I promise!

What else is new? Oscars are on Sunday!! I just realized that I saw literally two new movies in 2013, Her, which is actually awesome and a critically acclaimed gem and should win some awards and I feel very proud of myself for having seen it because generally speaking, I only like crap movies, and also The Hunger Games: Catching Fire which was, of course, a masterpiece and is being ROBBED by the academy! Robbed, I say.

My goal for 2014 is to see more smart person movies. So far I have one theater film under my belt and it is Disney's Frozen so...off to a GREAT start, Liz.

It's 9:30 AM and I can't stop eating stale candy hearts.

I'm rambling. Let's put a silencio on this nonsense and take a look at what was keeping it awkward this week:

This Subway Pole:

What I meant to grab a hold of to steady myself mid-commute.

What I actually grabbed: the handle of an umbrella a fellow commuter had tucked into the side pocket of his backpack.

He was NOT amused.

Photo obviously stolen from the internet, I was far too frazzled in the moment to snap an original masterpiece.

This Couch:

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In my sister's living room in South Philly.

Magnadoodle lives in the CUTEST row home in the Iladeph with a pal of hers and I stayed there on Friday night en-route to Etown for some family stuff. She was getting ready to set the couch for me to sleep on, but I was too chicken to sleep in the living room all by myself, so I made her let me sleep in her bed upstairs.

The couch was downstairs! All alone! RIGHT by the door and a giant picture window and just one room away from the kitchen which has another door which means there were at least three easy ways for murders to climb in and get me.

NO SIR I would not sleep there.

When I first moved to New York, people would ask me if I was scared to live in a such a big and dangerous city and the answer is always no way. Cities don't scare me. I feel like there are so many people, the odds of me getting singled out by a serial killer is probably way less.  I know that Law and Order should prove this theory incorrect BUT conversely, I've seen every single episode of Criminal Minds AND read In Cold Blood so I'm pretty confident in my assertion that the most psycho of killers love open space. The country? HORRIFYING. The bigger the house and the more space surrounding, I think the more opportunities for murderers to sneak up unnoticed and take me back to their Saw dungeon. Maggie's house isn't even remotely in the middle of nowhere, it's a freaking row home, literally surrounded on all sides by other homes, most of them filled with older Italian grannies who love nothing more than spying out their front windows and would most certainly catch the predator before he entered the home and murdered me, but there was still no way JOSE I was sleeping on that couch.

I am a real treat to have around guys. A real treat!

This List:

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Draft One of my extremely long Wedding To Do List. I wrote this out on the train from Pennsylvania last weekend with the help of my sister and then went home and typed it up.

(Allow me to quickly brag here that I am really, really good at making lists. Checking them off is more of a gamble but OH I can craft a finely detailed list like nobody's business. I take weird pride in this skill so just wanted to toot my own horn a little bit. Keep that ego up, ya know?!)

Sometimes when I'm making lists or writing notes or just going about my day-to-day life, I'll do little jokes with myself that make me laugh and are probably stupid but I crack myself up. This particular list was broken down into categories, the first of which was attire. Item one on the list was Liz's Attire, so I wrote what I still need:

Shoes, Accessories and lingerie.

Lingerie I wrote just to be fancy, as my friend and I are currently working on patenting (DON'T STEAL IT!!!) a line of bedazzled bridal spanx so that future brides can feel festive and fancy while still keeping it tight.

Next on the list was Brian's attire, so I wrote: Shoes, Suit, Shirt, Tie ...and then just to make myself laugh, I added "sexy male underwear."

And then sent the list to my mom.

Luckily we have a good relationship and she knows I'm a super weirdo and not easily embarrassed - the very first thing she mentioned when we next spoke on the phone was the Sexy Male Underwear.  Now it's all I can think about when I think about wedding planning and I just crack up.

Poor Brian. This is mostly just embarrassing for him. He has such a long life ahead of him, marrying me!

These Magazines:

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Or rather, how I came to acquire them.

As you know, my job sometimes requires me to wine and dine various members of the media which, for the most part is pretty fun. You get to expense lunch or wine (or both!) and meet new people and then campaigns are more successful because they can put a face to the name when we pitch them, and also we've just bribed them with food and/or alcohol.

But for the other part, it's just painfully, horribly uncomfortable. It's like going on a first date, except in addition to just appearing like a normal human yourself, you ALSO have to be professional and represent your company in a positive light.

Nightmare.

The other week we had a party for one of our authors (after which I fell on the ice, if you'll recall) and I met a friend of hers there who is the editor for a very cool magazine called Mental Floss. We hit it off and set up a lunch date for this week to talk books and magazines and what have you. We were meeting at this cute cafe called Westville in Chelsea and I was running late. I burst into the restaurant a few minutes after 12:30 and realized: I completely forgot what this woman looked like.

I knew she was a white person. POSSIBLY a brunette. Other than that, she could have been anyone.

I gave my name to the hostess and started awkwardly looking around the restaurant. There was one gal sitting at a two-top in the corner, her face slightly blocked by another guest's head. I started to walk towards her to get a better look when the hostess stopped me.

"Oh, that woman is dining alone."

Ok, I thought, not my girl.

I sat at the bar for a few moments, scanning the room. I spotted another solo woman seated further down the bar playing with her phone. I bored holes into the side of her face with my eyes, trying to get her to look up and somehow she'd realize it was me! Or she'd be like "WTF, freak, and I'd know she wasn't my gal."

She did not look up so I tentatively walked in her direction, when the bartender gave his head a silent shake and mouthed "she's not who you're meeting."

First the hostess...then the bartender. This whole staff was WAY TOO aware that I had absolutely no clue was was going on in my life.

I returned to my perch at the end of the bar and tried to pull up my work email, which was being persnickety, so I google imaged my lunch date. I had just confirmed via the googs that she was, indeed, a brunette white lady, when I heard a voice say my name.

In front of me both on the internet AND in the flesh was my lunch date...the very first woman I spotted, who the hostess had assured me was not who I was there to see. She'd been sitting in the corner the whole time, I guess waiting for me to notice her, as I wandered around the establishment like a very sad and lonely headless chicken.

In the end, she was super-duper nice and I think seems like the kind of gal who knows her way around a slightly awkward social situation (I hope she would take that as a compliment!!) but I learned a valuable lesson that day: always, always ALWAYS internet stalk everyone before you meet them in person. It may seem creepy but take it from me: it's necessary.

Annnnd that was my week. How was yours? Any fun plans for the weekend? I'm hoping to hit up Target, catch up with a pal in the neighborhood on Sunday and also have two birthday parties (POPULAR!!!), including one tomorrow night, a 30th, in Jersey City that starts at 9 PM. WHAT! Turning 30 means you finally have an excuse to start stuff at like 3 in the afternoon. 9 PM? Crazy. I'll be napping ALL afternoon Saturday, if anyone is looking for me. I long for the day when my friends finally catch up with my elderly sleep schedule.

Have a lovely weekend, sweet pals. DON'T watch Criminal Minds or Law and Order or anything really, except maybe Disney's Frozen because that movie is a gem and no one gets murdered! Spoiler alert.

xoxoxo Liz

Another Awkward Week - Olympics Edition! [2.21.14]

Здравствуйте, друзья! That'd be "Hello, Friends!" in Russian. Ohh yes, I've got a major case of Putin Fever. Juuust kidding he seems like a raging D but I do love me some 'lympics so...Sochi 4 Lyfe. At least until like, mid-next week when the 2014 Winter Games are but a distant memory and I've moved on to some other temporary obsession.

But for now! It's nothing but curling and speed skating and two man bobsledding round these parts and I maaaay have completely forgotten to document my ever-important life. So in honor of this XXII Olympiad, may I present, with limited comment...

Five Olympians Keeping It Awkward This Week:

Bob Costas

I mean....yes, your eye infection does seem uncomfortable but you're only making it worse by incessantly talking about it. I think the appropriate action in these situations is to confidently power forward as though nothing is wrong, not call attention to the problem. I mean, that's a move I would pull.

And if you're behaving socially in a way Liz Ho might ... you're doing it all very, very wrong.

Jeremy Abbott

Too soon?

I know, I'm the worst. This poor guy just saw his life's hopes and dreams and hard work crush beneath him on the ice and even managed to get up and keep skating and the closest I'll ever get to the Olympics is right here on my couch eating tostitos but people face planting is never not funny.

Am I wrong?

(DIS) honorable mention along with Abbott: ALL of the male figure skaters. Allegedly the premier atheletes in their sport and not a single one made it through without falling?! A disgrace, I say. A DISGRACE.

This Kid

Strike One: With one exception for Anne Lamott, I strongly disapprove of white people with dreadlocks.

Strike Two: WHAT are you wearing. This is the Olympics, dude, show some respect!

Ok, mostly this awkwardness reflects upon me. The hijinks (see: gum chewing on the podium!) and "fashions" of slopestyle snowboarding have revealed what a deeply prudish and conservative granny I truly am.

Olga Graf

Unzipped her skating uniform and forgot she was 100% topless underneath. YOU GO GIRL!!

(Also: how is she speed skating sans sports bra? You srsly go girl.)

These Gods

Just awkward for the rest of us pathetic schlubs who have to wake up every morning and contend with the cold, hard truth that we'll never ever be as perfect as Davis and White.

Annnnd the end. Gold Medal in the "Laziest Blogger Competition: Short Performance."

What is your fave Olympic moment?? Let's dish!

xoxoxo Liz Ho

Another Awkward Week [2.14.14]

Me again? What! I'm having such a prolific week. I pinky swear I won't so much as say the words "wedding dress" one time. I mean, except there, where I had to say it to tell you I wouldn't say it. But no more. No more, I promise! Hey, Happy Valentines Day, you guys!!! What are you guys doing to celebrate? I'm wearing my red pants (though suspiciously no new Valentines Day socks this year, mom?!?!) and will be hosting my Second Annual  Romantic Valentine's Day Chip & Dip Party this afternoon. This year I'm taking it to the next level, conference room style. I'm even serving champagne! I will make V-Day fun for all, so help me Anna Howard Shaw.

If any of you are feeling grinchy and anti-Valentine this morning, allow me to redirect you to my manifesto on why it's actually not that bad and say to you: cheer up, you grouch! I love you!

Speaking of love, I'd like to sincerely thank you all for your sweet comments & notes of support for my family during this last week. You're a beautiful bunch, you know that?! Seriously. Thank you!

And now, without further ado, why don't we take a look back at what was keeping it awkward this week.

This Snowbank:

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There's literally nothing more boring than talking about the weather all the time, we get it, it's cold out, but sometimes, it can not be helped. For example: this week. ENOUGH with the snow and ice and thundersnow and freezing rain and wintry mixes, Mother Nature. You've had your fun, let's cut right to spring. I'm not joking around...I will hunt you down, Mother Nature, and I will hurt you.

Thanks to the horrors of this winter, the curbs and sidewalks of Brooklyn are now just buried in piles of ice and snow at all times. The other night I had a party after work, so came home pretty late. I'd worn my snow boots there and then changed into heels for the party, I'm such a classy bitch, and didn't bother putting the boots back on to come home. I took a taxi home and was counting on door-to-door service, but forgot that the path to my door is paved in sheer ice. The taxi dropped me at the corner next to my building, I paid, exited, took one step towards my front door and yup...

bit it.

Booty on ice, legs in the air, arms flailing: bit it.

Enough, winter, enough.

I am now done complaining. Possibly.

This Cheese:

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NOM.

This week's adventures in large-scale grocery purchases. I guess I didn't learn my lesson with that oatmeal.

If you'll recall, last weekend I had some hawt plans to gorge myself on veggie lasagna (this recipe! so good!) and gorge myself I did. I hit up the grocery store Sunday AM and had ricotta on my list, but didn't know how much I'd need for the 'zan (attempting to abbreviate "lasagna." NO, Liz, no). To be safe, I decided to just buy the largest tub I could possibly find. Turns out the recipe called for just 1/6 of this puppy.

Which leaves me with a large quantity of ricotta cheese just sitting in the fridge, tempting me, calling me, begging me to just grab a large spoon and stand in front of the fridge with the door wide open, shoveling ricotta right out of the container and into my face.

And OH have I been giving into that temptation. If you guys have never experienced the joy that is ricotta cheese straight up, I urge you to run, not walk, to your neighborhood grocery store and purchase the largest container you can possibly find. You can thank me later.

And on the subject of our hawt weekend...

This Bumping Nightclub:

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Oh wait, no, that's actually the laundromat, where Brian and I spent our Saturday night. We filled in the rest of the weekend doing our taxes, reorganizing the kitchen drawers and marathoning the epic Ken Burns masterpiece "The West."

Um, yeah, we know how to party. This is how boring we are and we're not even married yet! I'm so nervous (slash EXCITED!) for our future, where we just stay in every weekend and watch television and eat  noodles!!!!

And quickly on the topic of Ken Burns, basically his entire oeuvre is now available on Netflix, so if you, too, are a huge loser with many hours to fill ingesting thoroughly researched historical documentary miniseries...hop to.

This Ensemble:

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Something that I love is the concept of  attractive "lounge wear." Stores like Gap and Victoria Secret have whole lines of clothing dedicated to looking nice even while relaxing and TV and movies always show women somehow managing to look chic and cute while lazing around the home (especially Olivia Pope and her gorgeous cream colored satin wine clothes!)

I adore these outfits and aspire to some day look great even while getting my Ken Burns on but in reality...I am just not that gal.

The outfit above is a classic example of the sorts of get-ups I rock around the home. Plaids on plaids on stripes on stripes on neon and the reason my pants are so short is because I think it's really comfy to hike my PJ bottoms all the way up so they're basically sitting right below my boob line. It is an INSANELY sexy look. (Also what is that face?!)

And in case you're curious what sort of spicy lingerie I'll be changing into the second I get home this Valentines Evening...ding ding. You're looking at it. Brian is a lucky man.

The End! What a week. Here's wishing you a day full of hugs and smooches and candy hearts and photos of red roses captioned "Best boyfriend ever I'm such a lucky girl <3 <3 xoxo luv u hunny happy vday!" cluttering your facebook feed and all the chips and dips your heart could desire.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZocWZYJx6Ic]

luv u hunnies happy vday!

Liz Ho

Another Awkward Week [2.7.14]

Hey, snowflakes. How y'all doing doing today? I generally try to avoid getting too personal or serious here in what is essentially my endless internet stand-up comedy routine but I'm hoping I might ask you all for a bit of a favor.  Earlier this week, one of my aunts passed away unexpectedly. She had a beautiful soul and will be missed by all those who knew her. This week my mom also lost a cousin, so both sides of my extended clan are reeling. In sharing these stories with some very sweet, caring friends, I've heard similar tales of loss and heartache over the past few months and realized that this winter's been tough on a lot of people, in different ways. I wonder if I might ask all of you to send a little extra love into the world today, in honor of my Aunt Anne, and all of those who are feeling heavy hearts right now.

Thank you all, sweet friends. It means a lot to me!

Now I shall insert a terrible segue here about how laughter is the best cure for all pains (minus the pain of recovering from stomach surgery...ouch) and do what I always do when I don't know how to express appropriate emotions which is make dumb jokes and talk about myself! You're welcome, world.

The hottest news in Liz Ho Land this week: my cell phone is once again on the fritz which would generally stress me out but honestly, at this point, it's almost funny. Once my new replacement arrives (hopefully this afternoon!), I'll have been through four phones and two batteries in the last 5 months. Impressivo! I swear I'm not doing anything wrong, it just happens! If I could keep a phone functioning long enough to become annoying enough to be the sort of person who "checks in" places, I would be the Mayor of the TMobile store at the corner of Flatbush and 7th.

It's astounding. You know how in gardening they say some people have a green thumb and others have a black thumb and kill everything they try to grow? I think I have a black thumb for technology. All of my phones mysteriously crash and burn. My digital camera? Broken. My laptop is barely 2 years old and overheats so badly I've actually burnt my flesh on it and it sounds like an airplane taking off when you leave it on too long. Every technological device I touch just withers in my hands.

Incidentally, I also have a black thumb for gardening, too...the combo of these gives me deep concerns for the safety of my future children.

Luckily my hot cell piece lived long enough to snap some shots so why don't we take a look at what was keeping it awkward this week:

This Oatmeal:

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Yes, this tub is basically large enough to feed the entire Olympic Village at Sochi for the duration of the 2014 Winter Games and probably a bit much for one young lady who decided she's actually kind of over oatmeal after all, BUT when I saw a stack of these 80 gallon tubs marked as on-sale for just $1.99 EACH at my local grocery emporium this weekend, I couldn't help but grab one.

Probably should have taken a moment or two to consider where in the pile I was grabbing. Middle? You know better than that, Liz.

Pulling out a tub of oats sent three more cascading to the floor, where they rolled down the aisle, one getting stuck under the wheels of another shopper's cart.

Smooth.

Adding insult to injury (this is just a saying, don't worry, no one was injured by falling oatmeal tubs), I looked at my receipt when I got home and realized that the cashier had charged me full price - so this whole grab-n-tumble situation wasn't even worth it! I mean, yes, they still cost only $3.99, I eat nothing but the finest brands, BUT STILL.

This Umbrella:

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My umbro is so sensitive, always popping open at the slightest of touches - especially when dropped on the floor, which I apparently do all the time. Like the other night in the ladies' room at my office.

It made me laugh out loud on a pretty sad day, so yay for funny umbies. I was the only person in the br at the moment so I risked a quick moment to snap a pic for le blog anddddd obviously no sooner have I whipped out my phone for a casual photo shoot then the door swings open and in walk a number of other women, all my professional superiors.

Nothing to see here, ladies. Nothin' to see.

This Paper Sports Betting Game:

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Also known as a "pool" ...something that apparently everyone knew except me.

We had a few people over on Sunday to watch The Super Bowl (will I get sued for calling it that in print?) and Brian put this whole chart contraption up on our wall. Guests arrived and I eagerly pulled them over to gush enthusiastically about this cool fun betting game that Brian had just invented, did everyone want to hear more about it, only to be laughed basically out of my own home.

I guess these "pool" things have been around forever and were NOT invented by Brian just for our party. And everybody but me knew that?

Did you know about this? Are you all having fun and gambling on sports without me?!!

I won zero dollars, in case you're curious. THANKS FOR NOTHING PEYTON MANNING!

These Fingers:

unnamed

That's glitter, not blood.

One of my cousins have been going through some rough stuff the past few weeks (double down on the happy thoughts, please!) so I decided I would make her a little "Thinking of You" craft project since, you know, I'm so great at crafting.

I don't have any photos of the finished product (it's a magic wand!) but rest assured that my office is still covered in red glitter a week later and the gift looked like it was made by a blind one-armed orangutan instead of an adult woman with PERFECT vision (it's true) and two working hands.

I know they say it's the thought that counts but execution should probably count for something too.

In this case it's totally the thought that counts, as FedEx seems to have lost my package in transit, ruining my attempt at kindness, forcing me to take to the interwebz to really just humblebrag it all up and make sure everyone knows that I tried to do something nice but the mailman is totally harshing my vibe.

I'd try to track it down butttt I may have sent this very personal package via my work mail system which isn't necessarily a no-no, but it's definitely not a yes-yes sooooo calling the mail room and causing a scene might only end with me getting in trouble so I'll just have to cross my fingers and hope this miraculously is delivered someday.

If only I had a magic wand to wave. OH WAIT!

(Smooches & hugs to you, Marcy, if you're reading this!)

And that, my friends, is that. What are y'all up to this weekend? We're due for more snow and I'm actually a little excited by that. After this week I just want to hunker down, snuggle up with Brian (who has the flu and better not give it to me or his ass is GRASS), cook veggie lasagna (I'm on a very specific "eat my feelings" diet) and sort of rejuvenate via hibernation. A blustery, gustery weekend lends just the air of coziness to round out the scene I'm building in my head so let's do this thing, weather. Don't let me down.

Here's hoping you all have something sliiiightly more exciting planned or if you, too, are finding yourself or your loved ones in tough times this season, go right on ahead and hop aboard this Love Train I'm starting. There's room for everyone!

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lfzl-2iSfbM]

[I was extremely obsessed with this Gap commercial in my youth which is prettty weird but I did own and wear that first striped sweater basically every single day the winter of my senior year of high school, cool story, plus this song is scientifically proven to lighten even the darkest corners of the world. Fact!]

BIG HUG

Liz Ho

Another Awkward Week [1.30.14]

Goood morning, you perfect sunflowers. How was everyone's week? Mine was...meh. I'm in the midst of the blissful lady time known as pre menstrual syndrome and have been basically a living breathing cliche of a hormonal woman. Judd Apatow himself couldn't write me better.  I was even more hyper-emotional than usual which, as you can imagine, is a real treat. I nearly burst into tears at the slightest of upsets (count your blessings you were not present Wednesday when I was six minutes late to a department meeting at work and almost threw myself out the window in melodramatic despair) and all I wanted to do was eat chocolate chip cookies and listen Taylor Swift. Which is basically my regular life, I know, but this week, it was all the ballads you guys. THE BALLADS!

Ladies are like...I know it all too well! HAHA get it? NO please don't. That's a lyric to a Taylor Swift song. WHAT is wrong with me, I need a musical slash life intervention like, yesterday.

If only we could go Back to December...Speak Now if you'd like me to keep this going...NOPE. Nope. I'm done. Let's end this TSwizzles fest and take a look back at what was keeping it awkward this week.

This Coffee:

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Sunday morning I woke up at like 7 AM semi hungover and totally groggy and realized we were out of coffee, so I bundled myself up for the subarctic temperatures and struck out in search of some joe. (Or, jo, if you're being tricky in Scrabble, which...don't even get me started.) I could and probably should have just gone to the coffee shop on the corner and had them give me an already brewed cup, but on weekends, it's just so much nicer (and more cost-efficient!) to brew at home. Plus you can drink out of a real mug, instead of one of those terrible, flimsy paper cups that always leaks out the lid and gets all over your mittens. Or does that just happen to me?

I had a number of options for purchasing coffee within a few block radius of my home: bodegas which have the cheap stuff BUT don't take credit cards or fancy organic grocery stores that mostly only carry the expensive stuff but take plastic. As I had no cash, I decided to try my luck with the swanky place.

Now, Brian and I are coffee snobs, but like, on opposite day. We stand very firmly in our belief that the fancy stuff is overrated. Bring us a plain old cuppa joe! Preferably Chock Full O' Nuts but we'll go with a Folgers if necessary. None of this fancy, shade grown, pure bean, slow pour hipster bullshit.

I'm sure that stuff actually tastes "better" and is organic and fair trade, while we're drinking the equivalent of carcinogenic motor oil picked by child slaves in Somalia or whatever and I do feel bad about that, I DO! I feel bad about everything, literally every single thing that I eat or drink or do but sometimes I just don't have the money or energy to do the right thing, so I'm just going to go right ahead and enjoy my cheap, slave labor coffee.

Today's unnecessary long winded guilt stricken rant brought to you by the letter C...for coffee!

Anyway, where was I? Oh! In the coffee aisle of the grocery store. Which is actually just a shelf right in front of the register. I was the only customer in the store, so the two clerks got a real show of me wandering around like a homeless person in my 2 layers of sweatpants, fur boots and ear-band over top of a hat over top of bedhead.

I have long maintained that the hardest thing to do before coffee is acquire coffee and this shopping spree proved that theory. OF course they had no regular coffee, and I wasn't nearly awake enough to make any quick decisions so I stood there staring at all of the options, wandering back and forth, touching all the containers of coffee, staring at labels, trying to figure out if I'd prefer Guatemalan over Colombian. Most of the coffees they sold were whole bean which honestly,why? Why would you make yourself go through all that effort? This is America. In the 21st Century. You can pay someone to do that for you.

I mean, again, yes, it's probably an impoverished 8-year-old but come on. Get over yourself. No one thinks you're cool because you smush up your own coffee beans, ok?

(Said the woman who refuses to buy bottled salad dressing...pot calling the coffee ketttle super black.)

Finally, 20 minutes later, I settled on a bag of coffee that did not anywhere on the label at all, trust me on this, guys, say that it was whole beans, paid a cool $12.99 for the stuff (as compared to $5 for a can of chock fulla!) and slogged my self home fantasizing about a steamy, dreamy cup of coffee. I ripped open the bag and OH WAIT ... IT WAS WHOLE BEAN!

Come on. Is this grounds for a law suit? I'm going to go ahead and assume YES. I mean, hair dryers have to include  a warning not to put them in the bath tub, I think coffee distributors should be legally mandated to give their friendly customers a heads up on their bean situation BEFORE they shell out approximately six hundred dollars for their overpriced nonsense. I'm seriously taking this straight to the White House.

I'm sure they'll have time for me just as soon as they resolve this whole Bieber situation.

So, after all that, I strapped my outdoor gear back on, walked over to the coffee shop and did what I probably shoulda done in the first place: I bought a takeaway coffee, in a flimsy paper cup. And honestly...it was delicious.

While I was gone, McGyver Scott tried to grind the beans in our food processor and it did NOT work. Sadly I missed this whole process which is probably for the best, as I would have likely videotaped it and put it on the internet with 50 paragraphs about how great he is ... I'm becoming like a weird stage mother to my boyfriend. It's creepy.

In other grocery shopping news...

This Olive Oil:

20140129_214727

$6 for a full liter, only at Trader Joe's. Once you've purchased oil at the Teej there is NO turning back. I can't justify buying it anywhere else. It's just so cheap! We ran out this week so I had a TJ's trip scheduled for Wednesday night when a friend suggested happy hour instead.

I know what you're thinking, another drunk Trader Joe's trip, Liz? NO! I solved my Trader Joe's splurging issue by shopping before I hit the bar.

I mean, OK sure, were the bags of groceries super bulky and awkward as I tried to push myself into the one snug open seat at the swanky wine bar? Yes.

Did the super attractive couple trying to enjoy their date next to me give me suuuurious side-eye as I rearranged my food purchases around me like a bag lady? Sure!

Did they give me double the side-eye when I then spotted a better seat had opened up a mere two minutes later, grabbed my groceries, coat, hat and cetera and begged them to move their chairs so I could snag those seats before anyone came? Of course.

Yes, all of these things happened and yes I definitely caused a scene and yes I then spent $30 on wine which kind of negated the whole olive oil savings which was the reason for this whole trip in the first place but it was worth it guys, it was. I finally found a way to keep my impulse shopping in check while in Trader Joe's! I just need to make sure I shop for necessities on my way TO somewhere, then I'll be forced to put down the frozen spanikopita and chocolate covered espresso beans and 8 lb bag of sweet potatoes: ain't no room for that!

I am a money saving, grocery shopping genius.

This Sleeve:

20140128_085101

The other morning I changed my outfit three times because everything I tried on felt too sloppy. Finally settled on a semi-nice cream colored top only to get to work and find the sleeve covered in this ENORMOUS stain.

And it was bone dry, so definitely way old and not fresh coffee. What IS that? How long has it been there? And how sloppy were my other clothes if THIS was the best I could come up with?!

Classay.

Speaaaaking of sleeves...

This Sweater:

20140129_164606

But wait! We've seen this sweater before. OH YEAH. Just wanted to reassure you that I'm still wearing this bad boy, pen stains, huge holes and all. I'ma keep wearing this until it just literally disintegrates right off my body.

Aaaaand I am done now. I'm done! I'm going to go pour myself a piping hot cup of home brewed, non-organic, cheapass coffee, crank up the T Swift and get this day STARTED.

Smooches!

Liz Ho

Another Awkward Week [1.24.14]

Good morning, snowflakes! How is everyone? If anyone is looking for a bland and unsatisfying snack, might I recommend a semi-stale, untoasted, whole grain english muffin spread with some almond butter? It'll quench your hunger, yes, but also leave you feeling deeply depressed and remorseful that you just wasted your time and snacking energy on such a boring, dumb morsel. GRR! I'll be starting my spin-off food blog annnny day now.

Anyway, what is up?! I know I'm stating the obvious here but it is flipping FREEZING. I've been wearing tights under my pants all week and I'm not going to lie to you guys...I LOVE it. It's so cozy and everything feels all snug and secure. I'm might just do this forever. I want invisible full body spanx that just keeps everything feeling all nice and tight.

I realize this effect can be achieved naturally via something called "exercise" but wouldn't it be so much better if you could just BUY it?!

If anyone's looking for me, I'll be in my science lab, working on this invention.

JK, if anyone's looking for me I'll be right here, like always, talkin' about myself.

So without further ado, why don't we take a look at what was keeping it awkward this [polar vortexy] week.

These Jammies:

20140122_065504

A college roommate of mine (Hi Alli!) turned us all on to this crazy superstition of wearing your jams inside-out the night before a snowstorm to bring on a snow day the next day. It snowed this week  so I gave it a try ... and it totally failed. Whomp. Not like I would ever get a snow day, publishing stops for no man or winter storm!, but Brian was really jonesing for school closure and I'm the nicest fiance ever so I bossily made him put on his pajamas the wrong way but alas: we were foiled.

Bill DiBlasio! I would take back my vote...if only I'd actually voted instead of being such a worthless citizen!

PS. the mismatched socks have no superstitious value, that's just how I roll.

This Nail Polish:

20140124_074940

So this was part of a themed gift from my brother and I love my brother and the gift and the polish IN the bottle, but once it was on my nails it was just TOO much. Too bright or purple or both. No bueno. I hated it so much I couldn't concentrate. Seriously. I would just sit here all day distracted by the site of my garish fingers moving on the keyboard.

There is this wacky lady at our office who rumor has it took too much LSD at Studio 54 back in the day and now just toddles around the office wearing fur vests and cut-off jort overalls with stockings underneath and hats indoors (a peeve of mine, if anyone's curious) (as always, no one was) singing in French and disturbing everyone she passes.

She's a real treat.

Anyway, I found myself standing in the kitchen at the same time she was there (every morning at 11 AM she peels and eats an orange standing over the shared trash can and I KNOW I should avoid the area at that time, but I wanted tea!) and just in case I wasn't already self conscious enough about my gaudy nails, Crazy Town McGee stops mid peel and squawks: "WOOOOW now THAT is some great nail polish!"

As you can guess, a compliment from this gal = you're doing something very, very wrong.

I ran away from her, quickly, thinking I must immediately remove my nail polish, but first, I must take some photos for blogging purposes. You always see those photos on pinterest or wherever of a person's nails with them holding something...I tried to recreate with my own hand and it was straight up impossible. I had to bend my arm in at this totally unnatural and claw-like angle to get my nails in the camera.

20140123_183801

WHAT IS THE TRICK? How do they do it? Am I missing something? This seems like a skill that is ESSENTIAL to master if I want to be a successful human.

Here are the photos I managed to snap:

[gallery ids="2583,2584,2585,2586"]

L-R: homage to Twilight, amazing crass mug from my assistant, some vitamins because I saw how rapidly this was spinning out of control, so why not make it extra weird, aaannnnd displaying my engagement ring with my hand pressed firmly against the wall.

I can have this made into a collage & framed if anyone's interested?

Also YES I did this during work hours yesterday...how am I still employed?

These Meatballs:

20140122_071954

Lately our grocery store has been having amazing sales on 3-lb packages of ground turkey so I've been stocking up and freezing it to have around.

Fuuuuck me I sound like such a grown-up. "Gotta run down to the deli, Bonnie, they're having some serious sales in the deli section!"

Oy.

The first time this happened, I did the extra super grownup Real Simple Magazine move of separating the meat into appropriate sized portions and freezing so we didn't have to deal with thawing and eating 3Lbs of turkey meat in one sitting but for whatever reason, this time I just shoved it right in the freezer whole hog.

Er, whole bird?

It turns out that a solid three pound hunk of turkey meat is NOT that easy to cut into. Just FYI. Brian is an Eagle Scout (!) and if you'll allow me to get a little schmaltzy for just un segundo, one thing I just love about this guy is that he has a super cute butt. And another thing I love about him is that he always likes to try to tinker around and MacGuyver things until he can fix them. It doesn't always work, but he always tries and it's always so adorable and I just want to squeeze him and smooch his face.

Gross, sorry.

Anyway, his solution to the ground turkey sitch? The ol' chisel trick:

20140111_142928

Like Michelangelo turned a slab of stone into David, that sexy hunk of marble man meat, Brian turned our turkey log into two sexy hunks of meat meat, which we then grilled and ate, burger style.

Delicious!

We still had a full 2 lbs left in the freezer, so I decided to thaw it out and make a big batch of  meatballs, about 14 of which we ate with spaghetti in one sitting (it was snowing! don't judge) and the rest of which I planned to freeze for later consumption.

Like a grown-up!

I put the hot meatballs in a container on the counter and left them there to cool before putting in the freezer because one time, on Thanksgiving, I got into a big snit with my mom because she told me you should let your food cool before putting the leftovers away and I was all "Mooommm! Don't tell me what to do!" (teenagers, am I right!) (JK, I was 28) and everyone knows you should always listen to your mother.

Except then I totally forgot about them and left them out all night long.

Pwomp.

The ever helpful Yahoo! Answers assured me that eating poultry left out overnight would surely kill me and so, into el garbagio they went.

SO MUCH EFFORT went into using up this godforsaken lump of turkey meat only to throw half of it in the trash. That's the last time I ever try to responsibly bargain shop at the grocery store. Or just grocery shop at all.

From here on out we're just going to Taco Bell every night.

(I'll def need those invisible spanx then!)

This Appetizer:

IMG_4750

Chips & Guac! There is this restaurant in my neighborhood that has amazing guacamole which they serve with either fried tortillas or soft tortillas. I went the other night & I guess I forgot the word "fried" and also the word "tortilla" because when I tried to order, it went a little something like this:

Waiter: "Hello, may I take your order?"

Liz: "Yes please. We would like some guacamole and the hard ones. Those hard things. Not the soft ones, the ones that are hard?"

Waiter: "Chips. You mean you would like chips?"

Liz: [red face shame] "Yes please."

CHIPS guys! A new invention I apparently just learned about. They're GREAT with guacamole!

This Coffee:

20140123_143534

Purchased to keep me warm and energized during a 45-minute wait at the Post Office yesterday afternoon. Except I realized I forgot to put milk in the cup and I haaaate black coffee. I considered going back to Starbucks and just sort of serruptitiously putting in some milk but I had already gotten to the Post Office and there were literally 4576 people ahead of me in line and it was so cold out, so I just stood there and held this stupid, piping hot cup of coffee until it started to burn my hand, at which point I put on one of my mittens (indoors!) but then I felt weird and also I managed to get coffee allll over my white mitten so I took it back off and the coffee had cooled enough to hold and then just 27 minutes later, after the woman in front of me finished arguing with the teller about the availability of rare tiger face stamps, I finally made it to the front of the line,  bought my stamps, came back to work and poured some milk into my now lukewarm, half-spilled cup of coffee.

Best $2.77 I ever spent.

Speaking of money, stamps are increasing by 3 cents starting this Monday, so if you have, say, a pile of save the dates laying on your bedroom floor begging to be sent out, go stock up on those stamps immediately!! I got stamps for STD's (nope, can't abbreviate that) and response cards (even though I just want to use internet RSVP's but my mom thinks it's tacky...more on that at a later date) and saved a whopping $7.50 by getting them this week before the prices went  up.

How many doves do you think I can buy with 7 dollars and 50 cents? Like a hundred? Two hundred?

This Music Video:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=moSFlvxnbgk]

 Actually this is only awkward if you're the kind of person who hates joy and pleasure because this movie is the jimmity JAM, y'all. I'm actually not that big into Disney films. In truth, I kind of find adults who are still super into Disney to be a little stunted and off-putting and as a feminist, I have a lot of problems with the whole Princess genre but as a human being with two ears, two eyes and one sentimental heart: I effing love them.

So the only awkward thing about this video is if A: you're an adult who is super into Disney in which case I just offended your kind, SORRY! and B: the amount of times I have watched it this week which would be approx 673. And counting.

I urge you all to RACE out to the theaters this moment and watch this film. You won't regret it! Unless you hate musicals or sisters or animation or FUN in which case you definitely will but you sound lame, so forget you.

And that's that! What did we learn this week? Frozen is amazing, tiger stamps are hard to come by, fried tortillas are called "chips," inside out jammbos do NOT guarantee snow days, purple nail polish is horrible and NEVER EVER listen to your mom when it comes to leftovers.

Good stuff!

Stay warm this weekend, kids.

xoxo Liz Ho

Another Awkward Week [1.17.14]

Hey Skittles! (What? Why?) How was everybody's week? Mine felt interminable. 'Twas  my second full week back after my long holiday break and thank the gods of every religion that we have off Monday because I am just NOT having it with this whole five day workweek scenario. A fat no thank you to that. I just spilled water on my laptop, always great for electronics, and in trying to quickly dry it up, I somehow managed to make the page super tiny small and now my fingerpad keyboard mouse type thingey won't work and I don't know how to fix it. HALP! Maybe it will be stuck like this forever and I'll have to type wearing giant magnifying glasses. NOOOOOO!

Ok fixed it. What a tense moment that was! And we all went through it together. I don't know about you, but I feel like we've really been through Hell and back and have come through the other side, stronger and better for it.

Oh my god, I am seriously losing it. ANYWAY. Ok. So. Where were we? Oh yes! 2014. Here is a gratuitous photo of me & Brian on NYE + our photobomber friend Kamran because I think it's cute, even though Brian looks like a bit of a demon with this red-eye which I would totally fix if I knew how to use a computer.

IMG_20140101_003253

3 Year Anniversary! Que Romantique!

SO!I knowww I said I'd be back to my regularly scheduled programming today but looking through my phone/brain, apparently NOTHING awkward has happened to me in the last three weeks! MAYBE I'm normal now! New Year, New You!!! 

Ok, I guess you could count the large chunk I took out of my index finger with a wine opener on Christmas Eve literally one second after uttering "don't worry, I know how to open a bottle of wine."

And then the exploding champagne bottle at my friend's during the Golden Globes.

Maybe I should also confess to eating, in January, SEVERAL cookies from a tin that my department had baked & sent out pre-Christmas as a gift only to have it be returned post New Years. LIKE YOU WOULDN''T.

Or crawling around our apartment on my hands and knees wearing an old t-shirt, no bra and, inexplicably, rain boots, attempting to sweep up the 450-897966 pine needles that rained off of our dead old tree when we finally took it down ... last night.

Oh, and of course, there was that incident where I flushed our apartment toilet (POST numero dos) and it overflowed all over the bathroom floor ...and we had company over (kill me literally immediately) and I ran out in to the living room where our guests were sitting with a plunger in one hand and 9000 paper towels in the other and very casually cool announced "soooo basically no one is allowed back in our bathroom until I say so don't ask any questions everything's fine GREAT BYE! and then ran away to deal with the disaster. I fixed it FYI. 

YES. Those are things that have happened but sadly for us all, have not been photographed. Maybe happily for all of us in the overflowing john situation. Perhaps not a new year, new me at all but just a new year, lazier me when it comes to photography. Better luck next week!

Maybe I just need a little inspiration...in the form of other people's misery! Help a sister out, friends. PLEASE tell me the funniest thing that's happened to you these last few weeks? Sharing is caring!

AAAAAAND...GO!

Another Awkward Week [12.13.12]

Good morning, turtledoves! 3 posts in 3 days? A Christmas miracle! Speaking of Christmas, it is in 12 days. What?! Mind boggling, y'all. Have you finished your shopping? I have...not. Even close. Still plenty of time for me to run around the office stealing free books to hand out. It'll be fine!

Do you guys like Christmas music? OF COURSE YOU DO! What are you, monsters? My friend Kathleen recently turned me on to this internet radio website called Songza, which is like Pandora but better. You go to the site and they offer you a variety of stations based on your mood.

"Good morning" it greets you. "It's Friday morning. What do you feel like hearing?"

It then lists a wide variety of genres you could pick from - holiday, pop, classical, instrumental, et cetera- and then narrows those down even further. Do you feel "Too Cool for Yule"? If yes, would you like Indie Holidays or Christmas Schmaltz, which is holiday songs written by Jewish musicians? (Answer: both!) Do you want pop? If yes, you can choose "All I Want for Chrismas is POP!" (emphasis theirs) or Teen Pop Christmas, whose description reads:

"Embrace your inner teenybopper with these teen idol holiday hits. Whether you grew up in the Golden Age of Boy Bands or with the current crop of Disney stars, these songs will have you singing along."

I obviously listened to that one, unironically, for HOURS UPON END and loved every second.

I'm still not sure what an Ariana Grande is...but I like it.

So that's what's going on round there parts. Just a Helpful Holiday Tip from my home to yours.

Ho ho ho!

Now, why don't we take a look at what was keeping it awkward this festive, frigid week.

This Whole Thing:

20131209_140152

We had our company holiday party on Monday night, once again leaving me to risk ruining a day-to-night outfit by spilling my lunch upon it. Took the bib route one further by creating a full-body shield, consisting of a scarf wrapped around my lower half and my "desk sweater"  buttoned way way up to cover the top. My desk sweater is, of course, the cardigan that I leave at my office to wear on days when it gets nippy inside...I think it's been here for like 4 years and has never been washed. Haha GROSS LIZ.

Anyway, this was all a pretty smooth move to cover up, as it took me less than 12 seconds to cover my lap in salad.

20131209_130903

Not pictured: the chick pea that bounced off my knee and rolled under my desk. Don't worry, I found it and threw it away!

So this holiday party. As I may have mentioned before, my company merged with another big publishing company earlier this year (fascinating stuff), so this was our first holiday celebrating together. My company has never had a big formal Christmas party - instead we celebrate Halloween with our big, drunken in-office costume party.

The other company, however, does a whole big formal thang and this year everyone from both groups was invited to come party down in a hotel ballroom in midtown Manhattan. It was very swanky and fancy and very, very, VERY crowded. So I did what I always do in situations where I feel socially anxious and overwhelmed, which is zero in on the food table, load up a plate, find a corner to hide in and stuff. my. face.

I managed to drop a piece of fancy deli meat on the floor at one point and must have also dropped part of a pulled pork slider, because when I got home that night I realized that one of my  party heels was covered in barbecued pulled pork.

Smooth.

After gorging ourselves on too much salty Asian food (the buffet situation in this place was off the hook!), my colleague and I decided it was time to throw in the towel and headed off in search of large bottles of water (we were literally puffing up right then and there from all the sodium & wine) and trains home to bed.

Before we headed home we took a pit stop in the bathroom. We saw the sign for the men's room in one corner and couldn't find the ladies' anywhere.

A large man neither of us had ever seen before (he's probably like our new CFO or something, please no one fire me) was standing near us and noticed our predicament.

"Go in the men's room," he said. "It's for ladies'."

"No...mens' rooms are for...men?" We replied.

"Not tonight."

We couldn't decide if we were being tricked or if he was some kind of creep luring women into the men's room (again, potential new CFO, please forgive our misunderstanding! I'm sure you're a great guy!) so we tentatively walked over to the bano and sure enough, found this:

20131209_200745

SUPER CLEAR MESSAGING, guys. Men's room...Women Only.

I guess that the actual ladies' room was further away from the ballroom and since publishing is about 97.3% female, they figured they'd do the gals a favor and switch up the rooms for the night but it seemed a little unnecessarily complicated for my taste.

I sound SO ungrateful right now and I don't mean to! It was a really nice party and I appreciate that my company put it together for us ... I just thought this was funny. I also dislike large parties full of strangers and small talk and need to work on my social skills like STAT.

Let's look at another Christmassy moment...

This Coat:

20131207_142711

This is a terrible photo. ANYWAY, as you can see my puffer is covered in goop. That'd be tree sap, my friends.

Brian and I got a Christmas tree over the weekend from a vendor about a mile walk away and carried it the whole way home (#humblebrag) upon which point we were positively covered in sticky pine sap.

Both my coat and good leather gloves were complete disasters. I took to the internet to come up with a solution and they recommended peanut butter for leather (ok) and hand sanitizer for other fabrics. Doable!

I have scrubbed my coat three separate times now and it's still not all out...at least it's super germ free and sanitized? and the PB DID get the sap out of my gloves, but now they're covered in nut butter so...yeah. Upgrade?

And while I'm allowing snippets of sentimentalism this week (gross!) here is a photo of a very cute ornament that our friends Caitlin & Brian sent us. Our first ornament for our first Christmas tree together!!

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BARF.

And finally,

This Game:

Have you guys heard of Ellen DeGeneres? She's a famous television personality and super smooth dancer. She's also now the creator of this app / game thing called Heads Up and if you've not yet downloaded it, I recommend you do it IMMEDIATELY.

It's basically a digital edition of like, celebrity meets charades meets taboo meets other fun party games... just trust me, it's awesome.

One member of the group holds the phone to their forehead and presses play. The app will then display a word and the rest of the group will have to try to make them guess what it is using clues, be they verbal or physical or even humming. You can pick from songs or celebrities or news or a whole bunch of categories and it is SUPA FUN andddd doesn't require anything more than a cell phone which you probably already had out on the table anyway because your'e rude and addicted to snap chat so you can play it anywhere, anytime, with anyone!

My pals and I were out at a pretty quiet bar on Saturday night (where, side note, I tried whiskey again and NOPE STILL DISGUSTING!) and decided to play a rousing 750 rounds of this game. There were a few other patrons in the bar, most of whom seemed more delighted than annoyed by our antics...that is, until we got to the charades round, where I LITERALLY drove a couple from the bar while trying to mimic the word "hurdle."

I mean, sure you're on a date night, cozied up on a couch, enjoying some intimate cocktails,  but I don't see how a grown woman galumphing into your space, leaping and flailing her arms and screeching really ruins your night, party poopers.

Live a little!

Bonus fun thing for this game is that the app also tapes what the group is doing - so while the guesser is holding it up to their head, it's recording all the funny yelling and flailing and acting that the rest of the crew is doing. You can then send these videos right to Ellen and if they're good, she might play them on her show! It was too dark for us to capture clear videos but thought I'd share that fun fact in case you're trying to become the new Sophia Grace or whatever.

Woo woo!

And there you have it. The week that 'twas! Have yourselves a merry little weekend and if you're shopping for me, I'd like a unicorn, please!

xoxo

Liz Ho Ho Ho

Another Awkward Week [12.6.13]

Hola, amigos! How was everyone's Thanksgiving?! Or have we completel moved on past el dia del pavo and on to le mele Kalikimaka?

It's my blog and I will misuse as many languages in one sentence as I see fit!

Mine was kind of hectic, travelling up and down Amtrak's Northeast Corridor, but ultimately fun. The crown jewel of course, was the reemergence of the Turkey Hats. This year Brian got in on the fun. Clearly he's thrilled.

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Welcome to the family, champ.

The other crown jewel, since the best crowns have multiple jewels, according to my close, personal BFF Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton (or as I call her, Skip) (it's an inside joke, you wouldn't understand), was my 10 Year High School Reunion. It was truly a night to remember...though some parts are fuzzier than others. Open bar FTW. I'm in the midst of writing a comprehensive, insightful and obviously hilarious recap of that whole thang but that's not quite ready for public consumption so for the probably one person eager to read that (Hi Ben!!!), 'tis coming, I swear.

I actually had high intentions to blog errryday in December (William's calling it Blogmas!) but so far I'm 0 for 6. Wait, no, this counts, hah, so I'm 1 for 6! 

#MATH

I'm also completely unprepared with stories & photos for this week, so while we're talking numerically, why don't we just briefly take a look back at the facts & figures of the week that was. Some might call this a cop-out and I might call them correct. 

What Was Keeping It Awkward This Week: By The Numbers!

TWENTY-FOUR

The Number of blocks I walked after work last night to get my engagement ring resized, only to discover the jewelry store had up and moved locations.

 

SEVEN

Number of stops I then rode on the subway before I realized I was headed in the wrong direction.

 

SEVEN HUNDRED AND SEVENTY
Number of words I have written up about my high school reunion so far. WHOA.

 

JUST ONE
Number of strange European men who approached me in the subway this week, announced "What is the word! It's the word! It's a thing I learned in English, What's the word!" and then ran away.

 

ELEVENTY ZILLION
Number of times consecutively that I have listened to Kelly Clarkson's new Christmas JAM, Underneath the Tree.

 

EIGHT

Number of decorative Santas currently on display in my home. Plus 6 snowmen, 3 scented candles, a large felt banner spelling Merry Christmas and 2 stockings. And we're getting a tree this weekend! It's a Mother-Elfing Winter Wonderland up in this piece!

 

SIX

Number of times in a row I have now worn my one decent pair of black tights without washing them. Mom, please put some tights in my stocking this year, things are getting pretty disgusting.  

 

EVERY SINGLE ONE

Number of outfits I wore this week that now bear salad dressing stains.

 

THREE
Number of times I've taken this Which Love Actually Character Are You Quiz, hoping to learn some Real Truths about myself.

So far, I've learned I am like Annie, the Prime Minister's head of house, you know, this bitch who calls Natalie "the chubby one"

 Annie lA

According to these results, I like being in charge and am good at making people happy. (At least one of those is verrry true.)

Quiz Two told me I am Karen aka the heroine of the saddest and possibly best (JK they're all the best!) storyline in the film:

 Karen

 

This reveals that I'm "the type of person who loves to stay in on a snowy night with a glass of wine and an old record. You have a great sense of humor and would do anything for your family."

That is actually true! Go me, I sound great. Except will this mean I end up crying while listening to Joni Mitchell, wondering if I should wait around to find out if it's just a necklace, or if it's sex and a necklace, or if, worst of all, it's a necklace and love? Would I stay, knowing life would always be a little bit worse? Or would I cut and run?

(Is the fact that I can quote that entire scene from memory admirable or pathetic? Please don't tell me.)

And the final time gave me the best possible answer: SAM!

 Sam

Apparently I am "creative, wise beyond my years, and very determined. I would break any and all laws to be with the one I love."

Hell yeah! Now let's go get the shit kicked out of us by love!

And that, my beautiful, unique snowflakes was my week. How was yours? What Love Actually character are YOU?!?!?!? Let’s just talk about Love Actually all day and forever and always and do nothing productive. Who’s with me?

Xoxo Liz 


Another Awkward Week - Thanksgiving Edition [11.27.15]

Gobble, Gobble, Turkeys! Who's excited for Thanksgiving? I'm pumped UP! Get at me, stuffing.

To be honest, I've actually been a little anxious about the impending holiday (LOL, who me? Anxious? Well I nevah!). We're squeezing a lot into a few short days: first in NJ with Brian's parents,then down to Philly to stay at my sister's & do a second turkey dinner and thennnn go up to my hometown in PA to attend my 10 Year High School reunion, for which I have been very actively involved in the planning committee because I have sucker printed big & bold on my forehead, apparently, and then back up to NYC on Sunday to return to the real world.

These are all wonderful things and will be great fun, but I've been worried, I have! This is the first year that Brian & I are doing holidays together - my first Thanksgiving away from my immediate family. I know this is just life and adulthood and I need to nut up and get over it, but it feels strange. I'm at once excited and a little bit sad, mourning the end of The Way Things Always Are, instead of eagerly looking ahead to building a new family unit with Brian. I don't want either of our families to feel left out or given the short end of the deal.Then, this reunion, which can't be a failure because everyone from high school will hate me! Which...why do I care? I shouldn't, but I do. I don't want to let anyone down. Anywhere. Ever!

I just want everyone to be happy and for everything to be perfect all the time forever and an eternity, amen. Is that too much to ask?!

Probably. Mayhaps (an excellent, underused word!) I should be using my brainspace to focus on the good, rather than dramatically worry? MAYHAPS!

And so, in no particular order and certainly not complete, a few things I am thankful for this year:

First and Foremost: Cheesy Clipart 

The 3 F's: My Family, Friends and Fiance (!)

A few more F's: French Fries, Fresh Flowers, Farmers Markets, Fleece, Feminism, Forks and Frosties (of the latter, I haven't had one in years, but I'm just thankful to know they exist.) 

Hulu Plus

Hiking Trails (& strong legs for those mountain climbs!)

Instagram

Sandwiches

My Covered Wagon Lamp

Taylor Swift

The Color Green 

Decorative Gourds

And, of course: all you weirdos who let me rant and rave and tell strange stories on the internet and somehow find that entertaining. Y'all complete me, you really, really do. 

So for you, for YOU I say, why don't we stop being so damn earnest and get funky fresh. A quick look at what was keeping it awkward this short, carbo-laden week.

These Groceries:

20131123_133032

Over the weekend, I stopped by the market to pick up some fresh healthy business because it is a known scientific FACT that if you eat at least one piece of fruit every day for the week before Thanksgiving, you can then have allll the pie and potatoes and wine and you will actually lose weight! Total true fact, gang.

I was walking out of the store when an onion fell down in front of me and I sort of kicked it with my foot, across the street.

I assumed it had just fallen out of the top of the bag. I laughed, picked it up and kept walking.

NOOOOOPE. Turns out the bottom of the bag had ripped open and suddenly all of my groceries went cascading onto the sidewalk. Apparently I had only purchased round foods, so they then went rolling in all directions. I scrambled around on my hands and knees on the dirty sidewalk, chasing after apples and lemons and onions, oh my!

A man actually walked past me and said "you a mess, girl."

OH AM I? No duh, neighbor. Charmed, I'm sure.

It probably didn't help that I was sporting this get-up, in public:

20131123_131107

Oh yes. That'd be moccassins (with a hole in one toe), Valentine's Day socks pulled up OVER leggings, a neon blue t-shirt and severely greasy hair all topped off by that food-stained, grotesque zip-up hoodie which should never be allowed out of the house. I actually acquired that beautiful specimen on a first date many a years back.  The guy was polite enough to give me his jacket when I was cold...but not so polite as to ever call me again, so I got to keep the sweatshirt. Booyah. I should don't know if I should feel like, insulted that I never heard from this guy,  but c'mon, dude wore a poop-colored sweatshirt on a first date...nothing to waste too many tears on. 

This Plastic Bag:

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Remember that guy from American Beauty who was all obsessed with the beauty of plastic bags blowing in the wind? Well, imagine how many more Oscars that film would have won if one of the plastic bags had blown up and hit a beautiful young (ish) lady right in the face as she was walking to dinner.

Imagine THAT!

Just look at that bastard, hanging out in a tree, taunting me. I'll get you back, bag. Never rest. When you least expect it: oh, I'll be there.

Other inanimate objects getting all up in my business this week...

This Umbrella:

20131126_233458

I came home from the movies late last night (Catching Fire! One Million Stars! Movie of the Year!) and it was a torrential downpour outside. I closed my umbrella when I came in the building and went to leave it outside of my apartment door, to dry. I guess I dropped it way hard and it landed riiiight on the top which somehow caused a chain reaction, forcing the umbrella to POP open, smacking into my shins and causing me to trip into my front door.

I almost died. Right there in my own doorway. I'd NEVER make it in the Hunger Games.

And that's my week! Short and sloppy. Just like I like my turkeys.

What are YOU thankful for this year?!!! 

Wishing a very Happy Thanksgiving, to all near and far. Strangers or friends. Or foes! Even foes! Have you ever called someone a foe in real life? Like "oh, that guy over there, he's my foe." That's another word we need to bring back into day to day conversation.

And a Happy  Happy Hanukkah to all my Jewish peeps out there. Shalom! Mazel Tov! Other Jewish Words!

xoxoxo Liz Ho

Another Awkward Week [11.22.13]

Good. Morning. Dudes. How's everyone doing? I'm not gonna lie to y'all: I'm a scoonch on the cranky side. I just can't seem to accept the fact that it is not yet the weekend. That we still have 8+ more hours of working and wearing pants and generally being not on the couch. I can't get behind that. I call a foul on the whole earth. Everyone, it's time to go back to bed! Ok to save me from launching into a full on melodramatic tirade about the cruelties of the modern world, why don't we just try to put on our happy pantsand take a look at what was keeping it awkward this week.

This "Poncho":

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One possible factor in this morning's mood: it is grey and rainy here in the NYC. Also, I couldn't find a single one of the dozens of umbrellas I suh-wear we own, so I fashioned a poncho/rain bonnet out of a garbage bag.

Genius or pathetic? I'ma go with genius. Watch yo' back, MacGyver. Two can play this game.

Wish I could say this was the first time I wrapped myself in plastic this week but wait, nope...

This Bib:

20131120_123407

I got to go to a super swankadoo work event on Wednesday night (The National Book Awards! One of our authors won!) so I was looking extra good at the office all day. A blazer over a cocktail dress can instantly take it from day to night! Did you know that? I should write for Vogue!

ANYWAY. We all know how good I am at eating food and I was worried about getting my lunch all over my dry-clean-only, snazzy day/evening wear so I hooked a grocery bag to the lapels of my blazer et voila: a bib!

Pure sophistication right there.

Speaking of pure sophistication...

This Makeover:

Whiskey-Night-Liz-8

If you recall, one of my New Years' Resolutions for 2013 was to figure out how to wear red lipstick and drink whiskey. Lofty goals, I know. On Friday evening I hosted some of my lady friends for an evening of trying whiskey and lipsticks. We called it Classy Broads Night. To give you an idea of just what kind of broads we're dealing with here, one gal announced that she'd arrived via car service (classy!) ... but also wasn't wearing a bra (less so!). It was one of the best nights I've had in quite some time.

One friend, Kathleen, has become a fermented grain mash aficionado, so she led us in a guided taste test of  four different types of whiskey, each one more disgusting than the last. She was very official about the whole thing. First she poured us each a small portion (possibly called "a finger")  and then instructed us to "spend the next five minutes smelling it." Fun activity! While we sat and sniffed, she gave a dramatic reading from the back of the bottle, explaining the whiskey's history, flavor palate (i.e. "mint, leather, papaya, wood and Sweden" - yum!) and other general information. All of these were hilarious. If you are a struggling creative writer looking for a place to get out all of your best metaphors, flourishing adjectives and overblown narrative, might I suggest applying to be a whiskey company copy writer? These jabronies take themselves wa-haaaay too seriously. From the website of one of them:

WE DIDN’T SET OUT TO EMBODY THE SPIRIT OF ADVENTURE AND SELF-RELIANCE OF THE HUDSON VALLEY, IT JUST TURNED OUT THAT WAY.

Did you, though, really, guys? It's whiskey. I love my booze as much as the next Irish Catholic lush but let's all just calm it down a notch or 73.

Moving on. After we sat around and sniffed, Kathleen then allowed us to begin sipping.

"Like a shot?" someone asked (see what I mean about sophistication?)

The thing about whiskey is - it is terrible! Every sip burned. Kathleen told us it's supposed to hurt, just power through the pain. When one pal exclaimed that her esophogus was on fire, Kathleen assured her "that's good!"

WHAT! No. "Pain is good for you?" That's what they tell people in like, the NFL. Or concentration camps. Why are we consuming something that smells like nail polish remover, burns our esophoguses (esophagi?) and requires time and effort to enjoy.

I'm still not on board. I tried. I really tried! I know that whiskey is sexy and rugged and sophisticated and girls who sidle up to a bar and order bourbon, neat, are totally smokin' hot babes and I really want to be all of those things...whelp, I am not.

I'm an extra large glass of bargain brand Sauvignon Blanc. And I'm just going to have to live with that.

In the midst of our tasting, our other friend Nicole, who is a makeup artist gave each one of us a brand new, beautiful lipstick and showed us how to apply, complete with lip liner. Ooh la lah. Everyone looked stunning and amazing and then, since none of us know how to wear lipstick, we spent the next several hours alternating between staring at ourselves in the mirror (Kathleen!) to sitting very still, trying not to move our lips when speaking, for fear of smudging. We all need so much help.

My color was called Russian Red and as you can see above, it looked pretty good! I was feeling seductive and badass until...this happened:

Whiskey-Night-Liz-4

How. HOW HOW HOW did lipstick end up on the bridge of my nose? I guess I touched my mouth and then wiped my face? I was probably biting my nails (gross, I know!) but why was I then rubbing all over my nose? There are no answers to these questions.

So there you have it. New Years Resolution 2013 ... complete? I drank whiskey and wore red lipstick and pretty much failed at both of them but I'm just going to go ahead and call it a wild success.

Whiskey-Night-Liz-1

Cheers!

And I guess I'll just take this whole classy drunk theme to the end with a story for which I don't have a picture because, as you'll see below, I wasn't quite in the photographing state.

As I mentioned, Wednesday night I was out at this fancy party for the National Book Awards. The party started at 10 PM (on a school night! Are you kidding me?!), so to kill time between work and the party, some friends and I got a few glasses of vino before hitting up the high endopen bar for several more hours. A whole WORLD of good decision making right there. I am not joking when I say that I am still hungover. I can't hang like I used to, guys, I just can't. How does anyone a) stay up past 10 PM on weeknights, just in general and b) drink heavily while doing so and then c) leave the house the next day? My entire body is in pain. All day yesterday I was just wishing the grim reaper to come upon me with his cape and his scythe and just put me out of my misery.

Anyway, I think that I had the idea to include something in my blog about wearing a blazer and then putting a coat over it and how weird that feels. Double the coats! Does anyone else ever experience this? Men? Do any men (aside from Ross, hi Ross!), even read this blog? Do you ever get used to wearing a coat over another coat? What a strange strange world we live in!

So I guess that was in the back of my mind and then I had a semi-awkward incident again involving my jacket at this NBA party - I'd left my coat & tote (rhyme!) in the coat check but of course couldn't find my check ticket when I was getting ready to leave, so I had to walk around the cloak room with the attendant til I found my stuff. She then wouldn't just give it to me, I could be a common thieving robber, so I had to give her more explanation.

"What is the brand of this coat?" she asked. "It's from H&M, I got it on sale, and it still has an old dry cleaning tag stuck to it from when I took it to the cleaners several winters ago."

Nailed it.

"What's in this bag?" she asked.

"Dirty Tupperware!" I declared, triumphantly.

Nailed it again.

I should not be allowed in fancy places.

I guess I thought this was hilarious and amazing and wanted to be sure that I remembered to blog about it, so on the taxi home I sent myself a drunken email that reads as follows:

Coat clog: coat over blazer, coat check lost ticket.bag full of tullerware . 

Also.dont forget apple

So there you have it. My coat clog! And what do I mean about the apple? No freaking clue.

Famous last words: I am seriously never drinking again.

And that was my week! God willing this hangover will subside any minute now. Otherwise I might just end up in the fetal position under my desk listening to the Dream Girls soundtrack and quietly weeping. I don't know if I could blame that on booze, though, that actually sounds like a nice little Friday afternoon right there.

Hoping everyone is in a significantly better state than I am at the moment! Any good plans for the weekend (I'll be sleeping) or stories from the week? Make me laugh, it's Friday!

xoxoxoxo Liz Ho

 

Another Awkward Week [11.15.13]

Hello, my beautiful butterflies.  How y'all doing? Is it just me, or did this week feel utterly interminable. TGIF to the highest power today, my friends. Here's a deep thought for your Friday, something I can't get out of my head: why is "Jack" a nickname for "John"? It doesn't make any sense! There are plenty of nicknames that don't phonetically seem that logical - like, Peg + Margaret or Dick + Richard (LOL she just said 'dick!'), but at least the nicknames are shorter than the originals. What is the point of Jack / John? It is the same amount of letters! It's just a totally different name! That's like, if your name was Ryan and you were like, oh everyone calls me Todd.

WHY GUYS WHY?!?!

One Awkward Year: Nothing but the hardest hitting issues. You're welcome!

Now, why don't we take a look at what was keeping it awkward this week:

 

This Instagram:

IMG_20131103_160756

Ok technically this is from last week but don't judge me. Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones. Or something? I need more coffee.

Regardless: I snapped this so-so photo of the NYC Marathon the other Sunday and posted to Instagram because what was I not going to gram that shiz? Please, you all know me too well.  My phone is set to such that I get notifications whenever someone 'likes' an instagram photo...but it doesn't notify you if someone takes back that like. SO! I quickly got a notification that my friend Peter liked my insta...but when I went to check, he was not on the list of people who had liked the photo. BURN ouch. Rejected! PETER! What happened? Did you change your mind? Was this photo not good enough for you?

I'd like to say I didn't care about this but of course I did. I mostly just wanted to ask if this has ever happened to anyone else? Or worse, have you ever accidentally 'liked' a photo or post of someone you don't even know? Like, say, the cousin of a wife of a college friend who you somehow stumbled upon and now you can't stop looking at her artfully staged smoothie photos?

No? Just me? Ok, well, I'll be in jail if anyone is looking for me. You can find me on the restraining order wing...right next to Alec Baldwin's stalker.

This Bar:

20131114_190401

Wait...no, that's not actually a bar!

Here's the tale. Last night I was meeting a media colleague for a few drinks and she picked the location, a bar called Strong Place in the Cobble Hill neighborhood of Brooklyn. I'd never been to this place before, but a quick GMaps search told me where I needed to go - Court Street between Butler and Douglass! - so I skipped on out with wine on the brain.  I came to the spot where the bar was said to be located and sho 'nuf, there in front of me were giant block letters reading STRONG PLACE. On either side of those words it read "Inglesia Bautista" and "Baptist Church," which I found semi-suspicious, but guys, this is Brooklyn, they would turn an old Hispanic Baptist church into a bar. That's about as BROOKLYN as it gets.

The two windows of the "bar" were covered by thick curtains and all of the doors were closed. There were no markings on how to enter.

"How cool!" I thought. "This must be some kind of hip speakeasy! What a trendsetter I am, going to this bar, that everyone thinks is really a church!"

I tried the door to the left, it was locked.

The door on the right: more of the same.

In the middle were two large metal doors with no handle. I tried them.

No dice.

I knocked: nothing.

I paced around, trying to appear casual,  hoping someone else would go in and I could follow. But all other pedestrians just walked on past, paying me no mind.

I didn't have a cell for my drinks date, plus I'd never actually met her before so I didn't want to reveal how utterly uncool I was, unable to gain access to this sexy, mysterious speakeasy, so I did the next best thing: I pulled out my phone and googled "How do I get into the Strong Place bar?"

The search provided ZERO answers to my specific plight, but did pull up the bar's address, 270 Court Street, an even number. I was standing in front of 271 Court, on the other side of the road.

I slowly turned and there, behind me, on the other side of the street, was a completely and utterly normal bar, with lights on and an open door, a tasteful wooden sign displaying the name Strong Place.

I take ZERO blame for this misunderstanding. You can't just name your bar the same thing as something that ALREADY EXISTS! And is right across the mother flipping STREET! Confusing.  I call shenanigans. I bet the owner is named John but calls himself Jack.

The whole world makes no sense!

After a few drinks, I predictably ended up where I always do when I've got a nice buzz on:

This Hot Spot:

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Trader Joe's.

Obvi! I really need to stop drunk grocery shopping.

Though, I was 100% sober earlier in the week when I stopped by the Key Foods in my neighborhood to pick up a few essentials. I had a basket full of  canned beans and ground turkey (3 pound family pack on sale! We'll be eating turkey burgers for the next 73 weeks!) and spotted an open check-out register, so I sidled up to the conveyor belt and began to unload my goods. I then realized that there was actually an organized system, with a line forming behind me and I had not just stumbled upon the good fortune of an empty register: I had butted in line.

Instead of just casually accepting that I am an asshole and powering on ahead, I became SUPER flustered, turned around, apologized to everyone in line and frantically began putting my food back in my basket, screeching "Oh god! I'm so sorry! I didn't mean to but in line! Someone else go! You're next! You go! I'm so sorry!"

Everyone in line was normal and polite and waved me off "no, no! It's fine, you carry on, you insane spaz" but I insisted. I grabbed my food in my arms and ran away from the register to the back of the line...

...only to realize that the line had now disbanded - everyone was already being helped at different registers so through all that, I had really not made one iota of difference in the timeliness in which my fellow customers paid for their groceries. We all would have ended up in the same place. I just caused a huge and weird scene for essentially nada.

Par for the course.

(We did this for dinner that night, in case you're curious, with spicy seasoned ground turkey and it was A++. New easy go-to meal for the winter!)

And let's just round out the morning with...

These Animal Droppings:

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On the sidewalk outside of my office. Did I step in them?

And that was my week. Let's just power right on through this Friday, team. We can do it! Anyone have any good weekend plans? I'm having some lady pals over tonight for a Classy Broads evening of whiskey tasting and makeovers (true story!) and tomorrow having dinner with my bffs from college. It should be a pretty girly, boozy, cheese-filled couple of days and I can. not. wait!

Hoping your weekends are all equally delightful and look out for sidewalk poop!

xoxo Dave (that's my new nickname. Because apparently, anything goes!)

 

Another Awkward Week [11.8.13]

Hello friends. How was everyone's week? Mine was a mixed bag. On the upside: a sweet friend came over for dinner on Tuesday - we had champagne and pizza. Classay. I ate a lot of cookies and avocados. Not together! Though, I wouldn't put it past me. I also caught up on Parenthood (more like ParentGOOD, am I right?), aannnddd I made a major adult move and signed up for new health insurance. Like a BOSS. On the bottomside: Daylight Savings Time. THE worst! It's dark at like 4:12 PM every night, you guys. WOOF. I can already barely muster the energy to stay awake for all of Scandal...how will we survive four more months of this? It's like Iceland up in here. I can't deal.

I am going to have to keep things brief this week ("HALLELUJAH, FINALLY" says everyone) - I'm taking a half day today, so scurrying around to get things done before I go.  Brian & I are headed to PA  to check out a few possible venues for our impending wedding (for which I AM excited!) and catch up on HGTV. And hang out with my mom. But mostly the TV thing. House Hunters International: I'm coming for you!

So, rather than our usual longwinded listicle, a short, MORTIFYING story that is sure to rank high in my Top 10 Most Awkward of 2013 List:

HERE I AM INSERTING AN UNNECESSARY HEADLINE SO YOU KNOW THE STORY HAS BEGUN

Before we begin, allow me to preface this with the fact that I am a tactile person. Recently an online quiz told me my love language is "touch." I just like to hug and pat and pet and snuggle and I'm certain I am a boundary crosser but I do it lovingly, you know? Say you know!

One tactile activity I particularly enjoy is playing with people's hair - long or short, curly or straight - I just like to touch it. I am a creepo weird freak, I am well aware.

So! Earlier this week an old colleague of mine was back in the office and came up for a quick visit with another gal who works in our building. This former colleague happens to be of Dominican heritage and has fantastic, gorgeous curly hair, currently styled in a short, bouncy do. I have totally touched this hair before, in a NORMAL consensual way. We are friends! Friends touch each other's heads? Right?

(RIGHT????)

So we're talking, talking, talking and some remark was made about her hair looking particularly cute (which it WAS!)...and just like, instinctively, I reached out my hand to sort of pat her head (whyyy?) but mid-reach I had a sudden internal panic:  "Elizabeth! You can't just touch another person's hair without asking! Especially not [whispers] ethnic hair. As a white woman! Could you be any more condescending?"

I froze.

Instead of touching her hair, which would have been bad enough, but salvageable, I just stood there, motionless, with one hand hovered in the air several inches in front of her head like I was about to anoint her with holy water or something. I stood like that for what was certainly no less than seventeen hours before slowwwwwly pulling my hand back and hoping no one noticed.

Oh. They noticed. I tried to rectify the situation by rambling about how curly hair for about 78 minutes (curly haired women ARE significantly cooler than their straight-haired counterparts: FACT) before my two conversation partners straight up stprinted far, far away from me.

Smoooooooth move, dude.

Friend, if you're reading this, I am genuinely sorry! I wasn't trying to be borderline racist or physically inappropriate...that's just my natural state of being. I hope you will forget this ever happened. Please?

For Christmas I'd like Santa to bring me lessons in how to be normal. Those exist somewhere, right?

Annnd I feel like that's MORE than enough awkward for one week. Let's just shut it down while we're ahead far, far behind.

Happy Weekend, pals! Get out there and enjoy that daylight while you still can!

xoxo Liz Ho

Another Awkward Week [11.1.13]

Hello, friends! How is everyone? Sorry I'm so late today (I'm sure you've all been barely able to function without me), I just got back from a whirlwind trip to my very favorite place: the gynecologist.  I spend the AM running all over town in the rain to get to my appointment, only to learn that my most recent annual exam (aren't you glad I didn't say pap smear?) (sorry for then actually saying pap smear) (smear!) was not a full year ago, and there was a chance I'd be sent a big ole bill from the insurance company if I went ahead with the exam, so did I want to just come back in a month? Sooo I put my pants back on and moved on with my day. What an excellent use of my pre 9 AM hours. My ineptitude in understanding the complexities of the American health care system remains impressive.

But don't worry, I still managed to get my fair share of clinical nudity this week with a Monday visit to the dermatologist. The derm might be even more uncomfortable than the gyno, now that I'm thinking about it.  At least when you're at the lady doctor, you're situated in a way so that you can't really see what's going on, you know? You can cover up with the paper robe, then just lay back, think of England and pretend you're anywhere but there. But at the derm you're just kind of throwing it all out there. Skin covers 100% of your bod, there's nowhere you can hide. 

My doctor found a mole on my back that she thought might be semi-suspicious, so decided to remove it and do a biopsy.  I know that this is totally common and I'm sure I'm fine ... by which I mean I am certain that I have melanoma and won't live to see 30.  I'm well aware that I should just be a chilly Billy about it but I can't help freaking out a little. Is that so wrong? I'll should hear back from them by early next week - GAH!

Anyhoodle, this surgery situation was hilariously awkward. Because the mole was on my back, I had to be at least topless - the doc said I could put my pants on but of course I wore a dress that day, so all I had to wear were my underbottoms. I was then instructed to lay on my stomach on the exam table, which I did, and they lowered the table, mechanically. It was on some kind of lifts that just made think of cars at the auto-body shop. The doc removed the mole, easy peasy, and then moved around to the front of the table, where she stood over me and gave me some skin-care info as the nurse began to sloowwwly raise the exam table. There I lay, like a Buick in for repair, topless, with my chin perched on one hand, senior portrait style, pretending to take in her advice (something about the ABCD's of moles?), but mostly trying to hold it together enough not to burst out laughing in her face.

It was real weird, you guys. I will never understand how medical professionals actually become accustomed to nudity...I swear I would just crack up all the time. Probably for the best I'm not a doctor. Also: I barely scraped through 9th Grade bio so...yeah, just a solid decision all around.

And with that, why don't we take a look at what else was keeping it awkward this week.

This Wild and Sexy Halloween Celebration: 

IMG_20131031_192026

Ain't no way anyone partied harder than Brian & I did last night. After dinner we caught up on New Yorker back-issues (him) and mom-blogs (her) and were lights out by 10 PM.

And we can't stop. And we wonnnn't stopp.

I didn't even get it together with a costume. I should have just walked out of the house sporting...

This Hair-Do:

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Which is how I woke up Halloween morning. Au natural, baby.

This Bottle:

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1) Please observe that label. That is some delicious Swedish Festive Drink, the signature carbonated beverage of Ikea. It is disgusting.

2) Get ready for your Liz Ho Overshare of the Week: Sunday afternoon I went to the bathroom and noticed that my pee seemed slightly pinkish (why was I even looking? Don't ask) so I did what any sane person would do which is PANIC. I quickly chugged two large glasses of water, found an empty plastic bottle in the recycling bin and peed into it in order to closer investigate. I was going to make Brian look at it (RIP sex life) but he was in the bedroom with the door shut talking on the phone, so I quickly visited my very favorite website Web MD. And would you believe it, for once they actually HELPED me instead of encouraging my hypochondriac tailspin.

Turns out, y'all, that if you consume a lot of beets, your urine (and um, the other thing) will be tinged a delightful shade of pink.

My mind flashed to the five large beets I'd juiced that morning in an attempt to clean out my fridge and there you have it. Crisis averted.

The more you know!

(For the record, I got rid of the specimen without Brian ever noticing - the mystery is still alive!)

This Bouquet:

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A gift from some sweet friends...one month ago. I think it might be time to bid farewell? I can't even be trusted with dead plants.

This Cabinet:

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My colleague Margaret just moved and needed to get rid of this cabinet. Somehow I ended up being the lucky recipient  - I was going to DIY it (LOL, I know) into a bar cart  - it was mine for free if I could meet her at her old apartment on the Upper West Side...and somehow transport it back to my apartment in Brooklyn. Easier said than done, friends.

The cabinet is set on wheels, so we were able to push it out of Margaret's apartment and into the elevator but got our first cold hard dose of reality when we reached the building's front stoop. It was a bear to get down one step...how would I get this up the 27 steps waiting for me back at my elevatorless home?

No matter! We'd forge on.

We pushed the cart down to the end of the block drawing many a stare and lucked out to hail an SUV taxi right away. The driver hopped out to help us load up the trunk, took one look at the size of our cargo, leapt back in the front seat and sped away.

We still refused to give up.

We pushed the cart across the street for more optimal taxi hailing but didn't want to try to haul it onto the curb, so mostly just stood in the middle of a busy road, forcing cars to swerve all around us. We hailed down another SUV taxi, who once again dashed at the sight of the gigantic furniture. I tried the Uber taxi app for a van, and the price estimate told me it would be at least $99 to get back to my home. Thus making my 'free' chest actually cost more in the hundred dollars range.

A super nice man with a van full of garbage did stop and offer to give us a ride which was SO nice and we totally definitely should have taken him up on his offer (it's always a good idea to get into cars with strange men, right?) but we decided enough was enough and called it quits.

'Twas not to be.

We rolled the cabinet back to Margaret's apartment, where it is likely still sitting in the hallway, if anyone in NYC is looking for some new furniture. It's all yours, for free! Plus $100 for transportation and/or the possibility of being murdered by a garbage van man.

And that, my friends, was my week. I'm REALLY sorry that I said "pap smear" and also that I told you that story about my pee. I'm considering establishing some boundaries, maybe? Eh.

Hope everyone has an utterly delightful weekend!

xoxo Liz Ho

Another Awkward Week [10.25.13]

Woot woot! Friday! How's everyone doing? Any big plans for the weekend? Today is our annual company Halloween party , which is always just a bizarre shitshow - you've never really lived until you're playing beer pong with a high level sales manager ... in a conference room...and you're wearing a sorry looking DIY cardboard boat costume ... and he's in drag...and it's 2:15 PM. Just trust me on this one. And then tomorrow, Brian's parents and my mom will be meeting for the very first time! Insert silent scream here. I'm nervous, you guys! I'm sure it will all go swimmingly, but listen, I've seen every single installment of the Meet the Parents franchise (don't judge me), so I know that hijinks can ensue at ANY TIME. Two thumbs WAY up to the very kind host at our local brunch spot who was super nice in putting up with my, let's go ahead and say, mild histrionics when I called begging for a reservation, even though they don't generally reserve tables for brunch.

Here's a cool pro-tip: want to get a seat at the hottest joint in town? Just call them up, cry, and go deeply into your personal fears and anxieties and they'll reserve you a table right snappy! Yes, it's probably because they suspect you might blow up the establishment if they don't, but that's just something you'll have to live with.

I want everything to be perfect. So sue me!

(Wedding planning with me is going to be a dream experience for all parties involved.)

Send me chill vibes tomorrow, will you?

Thanks!

Now, why don't we take a look at what (else!) was keeping it awkward this week.

This Trash Bin:

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I am consistently awkward, in a way that is surely condescending to the highest degree, when interacting with our office custodial staff. There are three women who work on our floor and every evening around 5:30 they come by to empty our trash bins - they're all very sweet and nice but also speak super limited English and I'm a bad  American who ONLY speaks English and also a horrifically self absorbed monster who feels guilty about this fact, so I always overcompensate by just senselessly blabbering whenever they walk into the room and making a huge scene trying to be helpful - usually picking up whatever food products I've spilled on the floor that day - and I'm sure they just wish I'd sit there and be normal...actually I'm sure they don't give two hoots about me AT ALL but I can't seem to stop.

Anywhoo, the other night, one of the women (gals?) (ladies?) (I don't even know their names! I hate myself so much!) came in to grab the bin, and I rolled my office chair out of the way and in the process rolled it over my foot and then yelped, loudly, "OH GOD!!!"

The poor woman immediately looked concerned and so obviouslllyyy I had to start yammering "No! I'm fine! It's just my foot! The chair! My foot!" and basically threw the trash can at her in an attempt to "play it cool" while holding onto my broken, crippled foot.

She all but sprinted out of my office and probably the building, forever.

Wouldn't blame her.

I am the WORST.

In other news related to the well-being of my crura (which is how you say legs in Latin. Look it up. I just did!)...

This Floor:

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This is the main corridor of Penn Station where I slipped on a wet spot on Sunday afternoon and straight bit it. Right down on my knees, bags flying, arms akimbo, there in the middle of New York's busiest transportation terminus.

Smooth move, Ferguson!

These Envelopes:

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Bought 2 birthday cards the other day and somehow left the store with 5 envelopes. Anyone need 3 card envelopes? I'll sell 'em to ya. $4 each or $97 for all 3!

Unmissable deal.

These Outfits:

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This is me and some of my xxxxtra kewl co-workers (hi guys!).

(P.S. I swore that outfit looked better in person. Maybe? Grubby Tuesdays are the new Casual Fridays.)

Have any of you read the Divergent series by Veronica Roth? No, because you're not 14? Fair enough, good answer! For those of you not in the know, Divergent and its sequels Insurgent and Allegient are the latest hot craze in the YA Dystopian Fiction world, the new Hunger Games if you will.   They are terrible and make no sense...which is to say, they are AMAZING and I cherish them.

They're set in the future, in a city that used to be Chicago, and all people are divided into five "factions" based on their personality traits. And then obviously there is some kind of ridiculous war and a love story - usually i can't really get that into romances in YA books, you're 12, you'll break up after graduation anyway, but this time I am deeply, deeply invested in the love story and I may or may not have a passionate crush on a fictional 18-year-old boy. No shame in my game!

All of the factions have specific manners of dress as well as faction logos, which are available in temporary tattoo form so if you happen to be a super mature 29-year-old adult woman, you can dress in faction garb...complete with ink.

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What's that sound I hear? Oh, that's the nerd alert ringing louddd and clear. Even if you don't know the details of what we're wearing, trust when I say this is basically the equivalent of rolling into the workplace in a Gryffindor robe. (And if you don't know what a Gryffindor robe is...why are we even speaking?!)

Luckily for me, I have pals just as weird as I am.

And that, mon freres, was my week! Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm off to do some Jell-o shots next to the copy machine. Happy Weekend!

xoxo Liz Ho