Monday, April 30, 2012

30 Wonderful Birthday Wishes!

Here is wishing Lily a super-duper, over the moon, extra Happppy Birthday!!
Enjoy your day, girl!

Pop Culture Update

I love Fifty Shades of Grey. And I am happy to report that I am getting everyone to read it. Just ask McHottie about it.
Ellen is even into it!

Jessica Simpson is STILL pregnant!
 It's another girl for Peter and Maggie!
Our girl Beyonce is People's pick for World's Most Beautiful Women.
 Add The Avengers to your must see movie list:

Paging McHottie! When you are all done with Christian Grey, let's start up the True Blood bookclub. Book #384372 is out, Deadlocked.

More baby news! Sookie and Bill are expecting a little fairy-vampire hybrid. 


things are moving along

Some photos from moving things around over the weekend. 
PS- my niece and nephew are adorable.
PSS- my hot water didn't work this AM. 
PSSS- Thanks to Dana and Mr.& Mrs. Spice for coming over and helping me on Sunday.  You guys are the best!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

First official post from new digs

What a busy, productive, awesome and exhausting weekend!

I am laying in my new room (new bed that is so soft, I am wondering how I will ever get out of it) and thinking about all that I still have left to do.

I have a list laying beside me.

The house is great. It is coming together. Today, I had the help of my awesome family and friends. We got so much done!

In the middle of unpacking... I made the Spice's a roasted chicken and scalloped potato dinner, with an Oreo birthday cake for Mr.Spice.

It was a really great day.

But I am beat.

So, good night.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

1 year!

Found this in one of the many boxes I am unpacking!

Happy 1 year anniversary Will and Kate!

Holy Shit

This is all that remains.
Every white trash bag you see... Is clothes.
Don't EVER let me buy clothes again.

Friday, April 27, 2012

for those of you that read Pam101

Dear Pam101 Readers,

I wanted to let you know that I am in full "holy shit I have to move into my new house" mode and am probably not going to be blogging for a few days.  I am sure I will throw up some posts here and there but nothing like my usual awesomeness. 

Moving is sucking my life. So much left to do.  But I know I will get it all done. 

On a happy note. I am hosing the Spices for a belated birthday dinner for Mr.Spice on Sunday at my new place. Now...if only I could find the plates, forks, glasses, etc. 

Be back soon!

lil Boo

McHots and I were having the most awesome conversation this afternoon when she mentions, "how is baby boo? you know, i never seen any photos!" 

Done and Done!

Boo's lil stinker is growing like a weed. Getting cuter and cooler everyday!

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

baguette, cheese, meat, wine and a "love well"

Catherine and Meg
One of the highlights from Boo and Pam101's adventure in Paris was our Les Halles food tour via Paris by Mouth.    A friend of a friend had emailed Boo to recommend taking one of the food tours to get a better understanding and appreciation of French food. So,  we bought the tickets for the tour before we left the good ol' USA and a few days later we were standing in front of a Starbucks, waiting for our tour to being.

And what a tour it was.  We were lucky enough to have Meg (the founder) and Catherine lead us through the "Belly of Paris".   We started off talking baguettes. Did you know there are good ones and bad ones? Boo and I thought they were all the same. We learned something within a few minutes.  We walked, we listened, we learned.  Catherine was awesome. She talked about the architecture around us and the role that Les Halles plays/played in the food culture and history of Paris.    We stopped in a cheese shop (aka heaven), we stopped in the mecca of deliciousness that is Strohrer, we popped into a few more shops and picked up various pates.  We weaved in and out of shops, completely engrossed in food talk. It was fantastic. 
Which is the good bread?

We made our way to a wine shop to sit in the back and drink some wine and eat all the goodies we picked up.  The wine shop (blanking on the name) was run by Catherine's (who is French) husband (who is an American).  We talked about all of the food we picked up, we drank amazing wine, Boo and I tried to keep up with the French talk and I am proud of us for hanging in with the ladies.  

Anyway,  the tour was supposed to last three hours but we were all having such a great time (and maybe it was because we were such a small group) but it lasted at least 4 hours, maybe longer.  

Pam101 would highly recommend this tour (or any of the Paris by Mouth tours) to anyone who 1. loves food and 2. is going to Paris.  

Now..if only we could have brought home some cheese.  Bon Appetit!

And you all are in for a treat! Boo wrote up her Food Tour thoughts (please note she is a way better writer than yours truly). 

Food Tour via Boo:
In a country like France, where famines can start a revolution, the price and ingredients of the iconic French baguette are highly regulated. A baguette, for instance, can cost no more than 90 euro. Baguettes for everyone!! But the French passion for this simple yet beloved staple goes beyond socialism and politics. The baguette epitomizes the way the French love to eat. Gastronomy, the art and science eating, is second nature to the French. And this is probably one of the main reasons we went to Paris, and why we will go back. We took Paris by Mouth and basked in its splendor!
·         Parisians – unlike most Americans – shop daily for their food. Partly because ample refrigeration and space is so rare, but mainly because eating is an experience that begins with a trip to your favorite specialty food shop, where bread, cheese and meat are prepared by artisans. The country as a whole takes its food very seriously. For example, Boulangeries – bread shops – are certified by the state to sell a true baguette, while Patisseries specializes in pastries. Don’t go to a Boulangerie to buy a macaroon. And don’t go to a bread shop that is not a Boulangerie.
·         Most importantly, the French prepare and eat food with a philosophy or belief known as “terroir” (pronounced terr-war). The special Brie that you are eating not only comes from a specific region of France, but also the hands that milked that cow (perhaps you were sweaty that day), the special location and taste of the grass the cow consumed and even the temperature are what make that Brie what it is. It confirmed what Pam101 and Boo have always known. FOOD = LOVE. (This is why only champagne from the region of Champagne France can be called what it is.) It happens that the French aren’t snobby about their food. They are in LOVE, and nobody, not some amateur sparkling wine makers in America, better mess with that!
·         So ingrained is their cultural identity around food (especially cheese), that Parisians carry cheese knives in their pocket, the way you and I might carry a cell phone. Who knows when they might need to whip it out and share a piece of the LOVE. 
·         Our food tour began in the historic district of Le Halles, the belly of Paris where cobble stoned streets are lined with these specialty shops. Our tour guide, an architect, was insistent about sharing the city’s rich history and architecture as a back drop to what our senses would soon employ. The streets of Le Halles, for instance, date back to the 18th century and possibly before, where it was known as the major thorough fare for the import and export of food. Rue Montorgueil was literally feeding the city, and had been and still does hundreds of years later where the young and old alike shop for their next meal.
·         While Paris was wet, cold and rainy, it was really spring in France, which means the "Season of Cheese." Mother cows and goats have already given birth to their offspring and voila! We get fresh, glorious milk and of course, cheese. First and foremost, we learned there is a "cheese etiquette." You cut the cheese depending on the shape. Brie wedges should be cut like pieces of pie while cylinders of goat cheese can be cut into plain slices.

Here is a break down of what Pam101 and I dined on while enjoying the awesome French conversation at the wine shop.
 o   Cheese:
§  2 different types of goat cheese: fresh and aged. Many preferred the aged goat cheese, which was covered in ash to preserve it. The fresh goat cheese was creamy, cold and melted in your mouth.
§  Coulommiers was very much like brie, but had more depth and flavor.
§  Sheep’s Milk Cheese from Pyrenees.  (all Pam101 wrote down for the name of this cheese was, "boo-something"
§  Comte – most common hard cheese in France. We tried 12 month and 24 month. .
§  Red-nose sheep from the Pyrenees.
o   Pate
§  Rillete – duck meat cooked with pork fat.
§  Pate – smooth, liver pork.
o   Desserts: Éclair chocolat, “love well”, Rum Baba.
o   Wine: Cotes du Jura

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

An extra awesome birthday wish!

Here is wishing my big brother an extra awesome, wonderful and majorly Happpppy Birthday!!!!!

For your special day, I thought maybe you could deliver my couch to my new house?

Happy Birthday!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Pam101's Parisian Travel Tips

I was thinking about what would people want to know prior to traveling to Paris.  Really random travel/tips and advice that I feel are pretty handy.  Most of it is things we should know prior to any travel. But then is always nice to get some advice (whether you take it or not) before packing your bag for international travel. 

So, without further are Pam101's Parisian Travel Tips.
  • When it comes to speaking French, make an effort.  Learn a few key words.  We were told by a few French folks, all they want from tourists, is to make an attempt.  Say bonjour when you walk into any place.  Say merci when you would say please.  Always say au revoir when you leave a place.  Just a few little words, will make a good impression on most of the French folks you interact with.
  • Be prepared to walk.  Paris is a wonderful walking city and it is the best way to see things.  Wear some good shoes (but still stylish) and be ready to hit the pavement.
  • Speaking of how great it is to walk...don't be afraid of the Metro either. It is a massive system but it is very user-friendly.  Get a metro map and get to it.
  • Take note that most Parisians aren't texting and walking. It is so nice to not be rushed and obsessed with the latest news, status and tweets.  The French just chill and enjoy.
  • Meals.  Parisians, seriously enjoy good food.  And they don't rush through the meals. Lunch is the main meal and seriously could last like 2 hours.  I would suggest that if there are certain places you want to eat at, plan your day around that.  On the trip I just took, we knew we would eat well but we didn't plan on where we wanted to go. So, while our food was always good...we didn't eat these amazing French meals because we never planned on getting to them. So, that is why I would suggest building your day around where you know you want to eat.  And believe me...even a baguette sandwich is amazing in Paris.
  • Speaking of food. Boo and I learned that when you get coffee at a cafe...where you sit affects the price.  If you sit outside at a cafe, your coffee will be a bit more.  Because those are the best seats. Sit inside of the cafe and you pay a lesser price.  Interesting.
  • Take advantage of the bathrooms.  Just a safe travel tip, you never want to be in need of a bathroom and not near one. So, always make an effort to go.  Keep a napkin on you in case you find yourself in a no-TP situation.
  • Take a boat tour/cruise of the Seine.  There is one line that you can hop on and off at 8 stops along the river and I think it really makes a great deal of sense. You get to be on the water and see all of the beauty that is Paris. But then again...doing a cruise at night is ridiculously beautiful. 
  • Oh and the most important tip. LET SOMEONE KNOW YOU ARRIVED! I didn't send an email to my family and friends for a solid 48 hours and apparently...a search crew was almost being dispatched. So, sorry about that. 
Now, buy your ticket and pack your bag!
Bon voyage!

Paris according to Boo's iBaby