Monday, July 26, 2010

Axis of Cute!

Genghis finally achieves the "tripod" pose, as Damian calls it, while he tries to eat the camera's remote.

Genghis has a fan club at my office....

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Keepin' it lazy.

So yes. There are some times I just don't care. I mean, I don't want to look craptastic to work, but I just don't want to make an effort. Here, I record some of these times. I took the easy way out. I wore something that I know matched or worked and ran with it. Zero effort from my part. I should be ashamed, I know.

You guys know I usually show everything here, but my face here was just...yeah, we'll leave it at that.

Dress: Rave
Belt: Salvation Army
Shoes: Façade booties, Nine West

Sunglasses: Fakebans? Salvation Army
Necklace: Anniversary gift from Damian
Shirt: Old Navy
Skirt: Rave
Shoes: Payless Shoesource

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Casual and formal work outfits.

I had an interview that ended up not happening. Grump. But we won't talk about that. I needed to look fancy. So I did! Other than that, last week's outfits were relatively uneventful. I really liked the coral top and zig zag skirt, though. The brightly colored top cheered me up during the day while dealing with certain situations at work.

Dress: Primark
Blazer: Thrifted
Shoes at left: Yves Saint Laurent St. Germain Pumps
Shoes at right: Sears

Monday (whoa, boobies?):
Top: Gap
Belt: used to be my mom's
Skirt: Thrifted
Bracelet: Gift from mom

Dress: Sears
Necklace: Gift from Damian, New Orleans
Bracelet: Gift from mom
Shoes: Payless Shoesource

Friday, July 23, 2010

All by myself: cooking for one.

Let me tell you, I love to cook. I do. Which is something my mother finds hilarious because I picked up cooking when I got into university. Before that, I could only make scrambled eggs and toast. But now, I have over 72 cookbooks and love to whip up a storm. Often I take food for my coworkers. I'm sort of a mother hen.

However, this doesn't extend to home. Back in the apartment, there's only Genghis and I, which sucks. I mean, when Damian comes over on the weekend, I occasionally cook, but we usually end up going out to take advantage of the food that's seriously lacking on the Wild Wild Boricua West. Though the Western side of the island's cuisine is picking up, we usually have to drive at least half an hour to get to an awesome spot other then the ones that are readily available (like the Mayagüez classic Don Quijote).

So when I dine alone, I usually just make myself a sandwich or some cornmeal, which pisses Damian off because he says I'm not feeding myself properly. True, I guess. But I guess I just don't like cooking for myself. Even if I get to take the leftovers to the office the next day and save money on lunch.

I'm trying to wean myself off that annoying habit and forcing myself to cook dinner. For myself. I tell myself it's a challenge to improve my cooking and take on dishes that I haven't really done before. Like this. A very basic Boricua mofongo.

I had never made mofongo before in my life. This is a blasphemy if you're a Puerto Rican. Seriously! I decided to go all out and make myself some mofongo stuffed with garlic shrimp cooked in butter.

Interested in making mofongo? Here's the basic recipe.

Mofongo for one (as my mother taught me):


1 green plantain
1 garlic clove
olive oil in non-stingy amounts
salt to taste (I never add salt, but everyone else does...)

(There's also the option of adding bacon! Many in PR do this, so feel free to include bacon into the mix.)

Add some oil into a frying pan and heat it up. In the meantime, open and chop the plantain into several slices around .5 of an inch thick. Carefully drop them in the pan and cook them until golden.

When golden, take them out. The garlic: you may cook it or leave it as is. Mash it up in a container and then throw in the cooked plantain and mash it up as well. Mix until garlic is evenly spread around plantain. Eat as is or shape it in a bowl to add filling! (Like I did with the garlic shrimp.)

(Note: Plantains are normally deep fried. My family's alternative is a bit healthier, as it uses less oil. You may deep fry if you want!)

Let me know if you try this! :)

Neighborhood Stonehenge.

I think some of my neighbors have lost it. I mean, that's my theory. What else can you think when they just start randomly piling up rocks on their yard and street?

On the other hand, I do hope they're not aware of some secret alien plot and that's the way to keep them at bay. Because if it is, I'm screwed! Bad neighbors for not sharing the key to save ourselves from impending doom?

But seriously. My neighbors are freaking me out...

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Shoes, shoes, thrifted shoes!

Genghis muzzle!

I'm a germophobe. Which is hilarious because I thrift like a madwoman. However, there was one thing I wouldn't do and that was shoes (and underwear). I wouldn't touch them with a ten foot pole. I don't know. Of all things, shoes seemed the most unsanitary to me. Then my mother, who is perhaps an even a worse germophobe than me, went ahead and bought herself thrifted shoes.

With relish.

Even though my mother went ahead and bought shoes, I still had a lot of hesitation about that. It wasn't until I mom and I were at the CR flea market that she saw a pair of flats and insisted to buy them for me. After not having mutant 'shrooms grow out of my feet due to wearing them (and a militant cleaning of course), I figured that thrifted shoes were okay. After all, shoes in stores?They're tried on by even more people than a thrifted shoe until they're bought and given a proper home.

Add to that the fact that with my shoe size, it's not easy to find shoes, well. I buy shoes when I see them. So yet another world of awesomeness was opened to me tanks to thrifting.

That said, the thrifting in the metro area hasn't been as great as back home. I'd repeatedl
y check the OSJ SA and nothing. Overpriced and understocked. I was about to give up until I swung over to the Cataño SA and found these puppies! The most expensive one was the velvet pair for $5.00. All the other pairs were just a mere $2.00 each. Needless to say, I will be back for more soon!

And here I thought Genghis was happy with my purchases...I mean, he was winking!

Only to later give me this: the glare of disapproval. I think he's taking his dad's side of my having too much shoes? Which is utter bollocks if you ask me. A girl could never have too many shoes.

Bad dog! No biscuit!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Review: J-Taste continued!

(Warning: Picture heavy post.)

J-Taste had it's pros and its cons. The cons were the expense. I honestly think that there were certain things that were just way too costly. The teppanyaki, for instance. However, you sort of "pay for the show" as they say. Nevertheless, I feel the quality of the food wasn't up to snuff to the price. The miso was good as were the dumplings. However, my udon noodles tasted as if they came straight out of a bag! I could've sworn I'd had them before. In my kitchen, from a bag bought at the local Asian grocer.

The octopi were good as well, but nothing absolutely phenomenal. I think they were a bit overseasoned and that took away from the quality of the octopus itself. The drinks were super expensive. Ridiculously so. The lychee martini wasn't bad, but it could've been sweeter. The J-Taste martini was more my style, but it still needed a bit more kick.

The salmon was good and the vegetables were specially yummy. I can't vouch for the filet mignon since I don't eat red meat. I wanted to have some fried ice cream, but again, the prices were prohibitive. All in all, I may go there again, but not for dinner. Maybe some appetizers before going somewhere else. That said, the presentation of the dishes was impeccable as you can see from the pictures in both J-Taste posts.

If you're a local or are in Old San Juan and want to drop in, here's the address:

307 Recinto Sur,
Old San Juan,
San Juan, PR

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Review: J-Taste.

(Warning: Picture heavy post.)

As you all may know, I spent a week being good friends with non-solid foods. I was pretty much dreaming of food all the time. Wishing I could chew without feeling intense pain in the crater that formerly had my tooth. So when I could finally open my mouth and fit proper food in it, it was time to go big or go home.

Damian's friend suggested we meet up and go to a place in Old San Juan called J-Taste. Of course, I was game. I would've eaten red meat, I was so desperate.

I'd seen the place before when driving around OSJ, but never gone in. Overall it's okay, but there are some things that are off and/or way too expensive. Then again, it is OSJ, so it's surely expensive so tourists' spend their money there.

Review and more pictures tomorrow! So stay tuned!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Nature: not bad!

When we have time to, Damian and I like to get out and be buddies with nature. Well, not extremely. I've gone camping, but he hasn't and I don't think I'll go camping again. Not because I didn't like it, but I'm just too paranoid to go and hang out in a forest or wherever after reading too many creepypastas and horrific true stories.

Lesson here? The internet will ruin your desire to go camping. But back to the subject. One of the ways we like to get out is going biking. Right now, I'm sort of terrible at it. I've barely had a new bike for a year. Before that, I hadn't biked in almost 12-14 years. Ridiculous! I had some close encounters with the ground before I felt like a natural on the bike again. Damian will never let me live it down.

So a couple of weekends ago, when I was still recuperating from my tooth ordeal, we went biking at a nearby nature reserve: Laguna Cartagena. It's really quite pretty as there are a lot of birds there, but it also has some dark rumors of UFOs showing up. Obviously, every time we go I urge to leave before sunset. I'm terrified of UFOs and aliens, but we're not getting into that.

We'd planned on biking there before, but never really got down to it. We finally did it though; a couple of hours before sunset. It was really quite nice and cool, a welcome respite from the ridiculous heat we've been experiencing lately. I'm seriously out of shape; I was panting all the time! Oh well, we had fun, which is the important part. Here, have some pictures!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

FIFA World Cup aka Paul the Psychic Octopus was right!

So I don't now about you guys, but last Sunday was spent in anticipation for the World Cup finals. I know that football isn't as popular in the US as it is in the rest of the world (and I'm not talking about that so-called football that involves an egg-shaped ball referred to as pigskin), but I was raised in a family that quite enjoyed football and made sure to watch the World Cup every 4 years. Add to that being with Damian, who used to play football and we have an equation of never missing a World Cup ever. Ever!

(Oh, and I used to play a bit myself. In fact, that's how I injured my left knee, but that's another story.)

Spain had been on a losing streak for el Mundial (as we call it in Spanish) for years. In fact, it hadn't passed onto semi-finals, much less finals, ever! So this year, the Spanish blood was on fire. Damian wanted me to come down and see the final with him because going up to San Juan and possibly missing it was an abomination. So I down I drove and went to a gathering for the final. Oh boy.

This is Frida. She didn't care much for football. She did care about food, though.

This is Arabella. She was also there for the food.

I'm not showing any people pics here because they are kind of compromising. Nah, kidding. But, people were feeling it. I'm playing it all calm, cool, and collected here, but I was freaking out too, as Damian would quickly point out. But! I will show you my outfit!

Shirt: Mojinos Escozios, Spain
Skirt: Gap
Shoes: Sears.

Kids, you cannot get more Spanish than this! Well, Damian was wearing a Spain '82 shirt and his dad was wearing the team's jersey...alright, so I came in third! I'm wearing one of my favorite band's shirts and they are characteristically Spanish. I mean, they have a song dedicated to Camarón...

The dress code was red. No orange allowed! Which is sad because from my dad's side I'm part Dutch as well and, you know, I got to sport the other home team? Poor Holland has made it to the finals thrice and lost, so I feel for them too. But I was quite glad for Spain's win. It doesn't help that the dashing San Iker was team captain, you know.

And, by the way, Paul the Octopus was there with us too!