that perfect hand…

In Ocean's 11, Danny said that "the house always wins. If you play long enough, never change the stakes, then the house takes you. Unless, when that perfect hand comes along, you bet big… and then, you take the house." Here's the hand I've been dealt, sometimes it's risky and sometimes it's safe, but all the time… it's perfect. It's mine.

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love…will not dismay

Sometimes hope is frightfully quiet. And sometimes anger is fearfully loud. And you’re hoping desperately for rain because it seems so intentionally fitting given the moment and pain and confusion and frustration. But the scariest part is if we openly hope and dream and be vulnerable out loud, that life will beat it out of us and what then? My friend is paralyzed with the news of his mom’s cancer… and I am paralyzed by what it’s doing to him. And in another story, a most-dear family to me, next to my own, suffering their own heartbreak over the last few days. Not only do these moments make hope little less obvious, it makes it oh-so-much-more important.

Anyway. Some things on my heart I guess.

IN other news, check out this vid. Then check out this band. Then thank Chrissy for showing me so I could show you.

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fun is educational

We had dinner over at Trav and Chrissy’s the other night before playing (and winning… no big deal) a few games. I always get excited about invites to the Simpson’s because, in addition to their insanely handsome and hilarious son Eli, Chrissy is one of the best cooks I know. The best part is she makes some really weird things that always taste exceptionally delicious. Wednesday was no exception; in the car on the way over I said to Luke how curious and excited I was to see what was for dinner. Anyway, she made pineapple salsa, which was to die for, and a chicken soup where we put different veggies (I think you call them veggies?) on top… kind of like a spicy Mexican taco only the toppings went on soup, not in a shell. Interessssting. With Travis’ commentary, Eli’s dance moves (and fascinated staredown at Luke), this dinner was amazing. But the coolest thing were all the random ingredients that were in the dinner. Like I said, fun can be an education, so I’ve provided a list of definitions of what I learned that night for your own educational pleasure:

1. hominy- is dried maize kernels which have been treated with an alkali. Mexican recipes describe a preparation process consisting primarily of cooking in lime-water. The process removes the germ and the hard outer hull from the kernels, making them more palatable, easier to digest, and easier to process.

2. tomatillo – is a plant related to the cape gooseberry, bearing small, spherical and green or green-purple fruit of the same name. Tomatillos, referred to as green tomato in Mexico, are a staple in Mexican cuisine.

3. jicama – also Yam and Mexican Turnip, is the name of a native Mexican vine, although the name most commonly refers to the plant’s edible tuberous root.

4. radish – is an edible root vegetable of the Brassicaceae family that was domesticated in Europe in pre-Roman times. They are grown and consumed throughout the world (JUST IN CASE YOU DIDN’T KNOW).

5. wine – fermented grape juice.

6. corn bread – is a generic name for any number of quick breads (a bread leavened by an acid-base reaction, rather than by yeast) containing cornmeal.

7. friendship – s the cooperative and supportive relationship between people. In this sense, the term connotes a relationship which involves mutual knowledge, esteem, affection, and respect along with a degree of rendering service to friends in times of need or crisis. Friends will welcome each other’s company and exhibit loyalty towards each other, often to the point of altruism.

8. poor losers/mean to kate in ‘the bucket king’ – Luke and Travis.

9. good host – Chrissy.

10. best dancer – Eli.


resolving to…

Here’s my list of resolutions, in no such order:

1. win iron chef 2010
2. listen more; talk less
3. run, run, run
4. spend more time alone; learn to enjoy the quiet
5. relax more; organize less
6. make some decisions about my future
7. eat more raw; eat less wheat
8. start saving for some trips i’m dreaming of
9. learn to understand grace
10. give myself a pedicure without cutting off my entire heel (like i did on sunday)

Luke’s resolutions, in no such order:

1. get in shape
2. use the word “chesterfield” instead of “couch” from now on and wherever it fits

We’re aspiring big this year. Look out.


props to my pops

My dad is a rockstar. I don’t know if you know him, but underneath his harrowing, intense stare and his fridge-like body type, one that you wouldn’t mess with, is a heart of both beauty and bravery… where he is willing to enter into the depths of the most difficult and grueling and challenging test in the history of all competitions. He’s a risk taker, resilient, flexible, committed, and an overall genuinely good sport. SO here’s the stage:

Dad (also goes by Jackie, Papa Gee-Joe, ‘the Hammer’, my bff, etc) is the most brutal critic of his most favourite Christmas treat of all time: peanut brittle. In fact, it’s quite possibly the only thing that I know of that my mom cannot make the best in his mind. For a lifetime, he has loved (as we all do) my Auntie Tanya’s brittle… so much in fact that Dad gets his very own massive tin of it for Christmas every year.


This year, in the snowy little oasis of Armena, AB, my dear reserved, gentle, wonderful sister Jes decided to get aggressive and make her own brittle to see how it would measure up against our biggest problem: Dad’s taste buds. Upon tasting it Dad felt that Jes’ set, although very airy, was a little overcooked.

Not to be discouraged, we decided that it was time for Dad to stop talking so much about peanut brittle like he’s a connoisseur of the stuff and prove, once and for all, that his aversion to anything but Tanya’s brittle was simply based on taste. Here in lies the challenge:

Christmas Day, Dad is blindfolded by one of Jayme’s new scandalously fashionable scarves (thanks Jayme). We lined up 5 types of peanut brittle in front of the challenger and in something slightly resembling Iron Chef, Dad, the food critic that he is, hunkered down to decide what was his favourite peanut brittle.

The choices were:

1. Carol Simpson (so Uncle Chuck’s ma)
2. Auntie Tanya
3. Jes
4. Store Bought

We didn’t have any of my Mom’s, thankfully. It was delicious, but that would’ve brought far too much bias. He picked Auntie Tanya’s in the end so at least he’s consistent. Oh well. Jes put up the good fight — he said her peanut brittle “floats” in his mouth… whatever that means.

Here’s some photos of the scariness than ensued:

'talking the talk'

the battleground

the warrior - preparing to fight - with his pallet cleanser of milk

assessing, critiquing, peanut-brittle snobbing

spectator - not into it


graciously losing

ok maybe a little into it

'alright champ, it goes like this..."