Sunday, January 30, 2011


Well. I'm pretty sure I just took an ultimate dream vacation. I finished up internal medicine at the VA at 7pm Tuesday night. Have you read House of God? That was VA medicine, in a nutshell. ahem, minus some inappropriate call room interactions, but I digress. The patient I "tucked in" by 7pm is portrayed in that book. I love medicine, but I am extremely glad I picked psychiatry. Let's just say I was more than ready for a vacation. Especially one that included sun and wine tasting.

Anyways, went home, packed up and went to bed. Up early in the am for a quick workout and airport ride by the bro and his gf. Board the plane, get my peanut m&ms out and get ready. We pull out, pull back in. Problem with a landing gear. Pull out, pull back in. Problem with a sticker. hmmm. Doesn't seem that important. Pull out, pull back in. Problem with an engine. Ok. Enough! That flight was canceled after about 2 hours waiting! Afternoon was spent in the sky lounge waiting for the evening fight. Not too bad, free olives and a bloody mary courtesy of Delta Sky Lounge. There are definitely perks of traveling with someone who flies weekly!

Finally we arrived in SF, picked up the rental car and headed to Napa. I got to see the bridge lit up at night, and we made it! Albeit a bit late, but whatever, still on vacation!

Up in the am for a quick workout before a glorious, and I mean glorious day of wine tasting. The "group" tour we purchased actually ended up being the two of us on a gigantic bus driven by a man in a top hat. Holy cow, this is going to be awesome.

First stop Flora Springs. LOVED this place. Here the winery is owned by an 85 year old lady, who approves all the wines. We learned some of the basics here, the role of the winemaker etc. Flora Springs had a ton of really creative mixes. Which we didn't appreciate at the time, but were actually really unique. Pretty fantastic wine. We actually went back the next day for lunch. It was next door to a Dean & DeLuca. I desperately wanted to stop there, because, well...Felicity worked there. I was indulged, and we ate a delicious lunch there the next day on the roof, 70 degrees, in CA. Ahhhh.

mmm. sun. wine. cheese. olives. heaven....seriously. This could not have been better.

Then on to.

Alpha Omega. This was a small, newer winery. I snuck back into the cooler area to snap a few picks. Here, I discovered Chardonnay is actually really really good. But, you have to pay $40 a bottle, :( not so good. Apparently, you are supposed to chill chardonnay, then remove from fridge about an hour before imbibing. Let it warm up a bit and you will notice the flavors that are released. yum. To oak or not to oak? That is the question.

Wine tasting lunch spread, picked up in the deli of V Sattui prior to the tasting. Again. Olives, crackers, meat, and salami. Crackers and salami certified GF. Napa is officially a GF girl's paradise. Ready to go back. ASAP.

Then on to the tasting.

This was a large winery, with pretty fantastic picnic grounds. Ended up tasting a Midori here that B&B will be getting, whenever they get their snowbird butts back to MN.

Next up...these tiny pours are adding up. Time to start dumping!

Black Stallion. Another smaller winery, that unfortch, does not distribute to MN. Here I discovered Moscato is fantastic.  Yummmm.

Our final stop on the tour actually was closed. So our top hatted friend improvised and took us to Luna.

Excellent choice. Another fantastic Chardonnay was had here. Plus a tour of the grounds. Misty and beautiful.

The last winery, tear, was the next day prior to SF departure. I had to stop at Robert Mondavi. Because, well, its famous. And it was delicious. Another really really tasty moscato was had here.

Beautiful grounds. You could really get up close to the grapes! It was so nice to have a splash of green in January!

The goods

Off to san fran. So long Napa, I'll be back, Arnold would approve of my CA tourism endorsement. I hope.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Accent Vlog

Aunt, Route, Wash, Oil, Theater, Iron, Salmon, Caramel, Fire, Water, Sure, Data, Ruin, Crayon, Toilet, New Orleans, Pecan, Both, Again, Probably, Spitting image, Alabama, Lawyer, Coupon, Mayonnaise, Syrup, Pajamas, Caught
  • What is it called when you throw toilet paper on a house?
  • What is the bug that when you touch it, it curls into a ball?
  • What is the bubbly carbonated drink called?
  • What do you call gym shoes?
  • What do you say to address a group of people?
  • What do you call the kind of spider that has an oval-shaped
    body and extremely long legs?
  • What do you call your grandparents?
  • What do you call the wheeled contraption in which you carry
  • groceries at the supermarket?
  • What do you call it when rain falls while the sun is shining?
  • What is the thing you change the TV channel with?
I'm working on my vacation post. I swear!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


I'm going to post about my vacation next. I swear. It was ahhhmazing.

Look at that soup. I'm still a food blog. I ate this around Christmas, in the midst of my insane medicine rotation. My mom made it. She still takes care of me, even though I'm 27, going on 12.  whoa, that's old. Anyways. Wild rice soup. A perfect MN concoction. I bet you'd like the recipe.  I would to! Mom?

Filler so I can prepare my vacation post...

1. Do you decorate for Valentine’s day? Sort of, I have a pink place-mat and a coffee cup. That counts I think.
2. Does your desktop have a picture or computer graphic? Is it organized?
My desktop is organized... in that I put everything into a few folders. The folders, however, are a royal mess. I change my desktop picture frequently. I am obsessed with finding pretty pictures online; and have a few photo blogs I follow. I change the pic when I need a pick me up, or when I convince myself the picture is causing bad luck. Nonsensical, I know.

3. Do you use a paper planner, electric planner or no planner at all?
I have a calendar on my computer that syncs to my phone. Thank god. I used planners in HS but not since. My chief resident also keeps a gmail calendar updated for us. Thankfully, they are all accessible from any computer. I am not reliable enough to carry anything with me.

4. Do you change purses or bags often or stick with a good thing?
I do fairly frequently. I have a plethora of "bag lady" purses that I switch up depending on the season. I also have a small red leather purse my Mom got in Firenze that I use when I want to look more presentable.
5. What’s your favorite YouTube Video?
Hmm. Not really sure. I think the "hide yo kids hide you wife" you tube clip is a hoot though.

6. Do you use Turbo Tax or a real person to pay your taxes?
I "let" my brother do my taxes on turbo tax. However, I never got my renter's return last year, so maybe I'll have to go back to "letting" my Dad file them.
7. How many states have you set foot (or tire) in? Which ones?
Pull up a map. 17 I think, not counting layovers. Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Missouri, Vermont, DC, Maryland, North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana, Wyoming, California, Florida, Colorado

8. How many countries have you been in? Which ones?
Hmm. 13. US,  Canada, England, Italy, France, China, Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Switzerland, Mexico, Ecuador, Peru.

9. How many pillows are in your house? (Sleeping or decorative)
Well. 6 on my bed and two on my couch. Not that impressive. I need to step it up.
10. How cold is too cold for flip flops?
If your toes are blue then it's too cold

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


This was my week... Seriously... You should watch this video and read House of God. Then you can understand! But alas, I am done. finito. I'm going to do 10 on Tuesday, go to the gym, and pack for California...Napa Valley here I come. Wine tasting, and maybe a little wine sipping :)

Ten on Tuesday

1. Is there a band/artist that you HATE?
I guess, Nickleback? I used to hate Jerry Jeff Walker, now I could probably be persuaded to rock out to some Navajo Rug.

2. What do you do when you get a gift that you do not like? How do you react?I say thank you, then try to give it to someone else

3. How is your work office/cubicle decorated?
I do not have a workspace per say. I rotate offices every 4 weeks. I usually have scattered notes, pt info and pop. I also keep a bag of target shoes under my desk so that I can wear my boots to work. I look pretty sweet.

4. Do you use all of your vacation every year?
I have never had vacation time before. I have 15 days this year. I WILL use all of them. I will also try to finagle extra days by incorporating weekends. I might also need to get appendicitis in about a month and get some sick leave? Just kidding, I love my job...

5. Did you have a real or fake Christmas tree?
I have two. They are fake. They are also about 1 foot tall. Living large.

6. If you could have anything for dinner tonight, what would it be?
Sushi and olives and Parmesan cheese.

7. Do you bite your fingernails?
Nope. I bite hangnails sometimes. Then I remember I work in a hospital and it's totally nasty to put anything in my mouth. Gross. Moving on.

8. How many cups of coffee do you drink each day?
Zero. Thanks for not asking about diet coke.

9. Do you have a nervous tick?
Not that I'm aware of. When I'm tired my R eyelid twitches though.

10. How often do you vacuum?1-2 times a week. George keeps me honest.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Germs + 90 pack years is a bad thing

In 1 week I will have COMPLETED my internal medicine requirements. woot. Done, finito. And, I will be in CA for wine tasting....sweet!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

New Year

Happy New Year.

Now you have a choice, two recipes sitting on your shoulders, which one is whispering louder?

Buffalo Chicken Dip or Spiced Chicken breasts with broccoli and Karina's potato salad?

The Devil with franks buffalo sauce... Perfect dip for new years eve.

Start by mixing 2 packs cream cheese, 1/2 c blue cheese dressing, 1/2 c ranch dressing, 1 c Franks Buffalo hot sauce. Use your mixer, it's a holiday after all. Mix for about 3 min, it gets smooth. Keep going.

Add in some shredded chicken. I plopped some breasts in the slow cooker and headed to the gym. That means I deserve this dip right? Also add in about a cup of shredded cheddar cheese. Men wanted to eat this, so I added extra cheese and chicken. I'm easy like that.

Then pour it in a pan and top with extra cheese. You could sprinkle blue cheese ontop, but I didn't. I'm no martha.

Bake till bubbly, about 20 min at normal oven temp....350?

Then the next day you better redeem yourself.

Chicken rub, gifted from Santa/Mama Barb, steamed broccoli with lemon butter and pepper and Karina's champagne vinegar potato salad...

I'll eat healthier now. Promise.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Ok. Baking time.

I'm sure you're dying to see what I baked up for Christmas eve now that you've adopted the super new years diet. Make sure you grease the pans! And use wax paper-clean up is so much easier. I'll be ecofriendly next year.

Almond flour is way cheap at TJs. Snowy Almond Cookies! No finished picture, oh well. They bake up fluffy and crackley. I know that's not a word. But that's what they are like.

Junk cookies: Betty Crocker Chocolate Chip mix, plus white chocolate chips, hazelnuts and coconut flakes. No I didn't measure, handful of each, plus an extra toss of coconut. You don't have to be exact, its not like you're baking or something.

Peanut butter fudge!

Improv bark: Melt chocolate in a double boiler. Let the bottom layer cool before adding the top layer. Milk chocolate base, white chocolate/hazelnut/coconut top.

Peppermint bark: Milk chocolate + peppermint extract+ a few crushed candy canes. Top layer is white chocolate, + heftier dose of peppermint extract + heartier dose of candy cane.