Archive | June, 2011

Hip Hop Pyramid

30 Jun

What’s more fun than the food pyramid?  A hip hop food pyramid! 

Click here to see a larger version.   Pretty clever.  I think my favorite is Cantaloupe Fiasco!

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Let’s Go to the Movies…

29 Jun

I recently started using Netflix and I love it.  I manage my queue like it’s my job, and I try to maximize the number of  movies I see per month.   Sorry Netflix, you’re not making money off this kid!  Anyway, Netflix definitely revolutionized the video rental industry and now one company is trying to do the same with movies in the theater.

MoviePass, a start-up company, will be offering customers access to unlimited movies in a theater for $50 a month.  Read the article here.   

I don’t know about your town, but here in Boston movie tickets are usually around $10 a pop.  So in order to save money, I’d have to see six movies a month.  Honestly, I don’t think there is ever a month where there are six movies in the theater I’m dying to see.  Also movie turnover isn’t that quick so I can’t imaging seeing twelve movies in two months.  And good luck getting your friends to come see Snow Dogs 5 with you!

Still, I think this is an interesting idea and has some potential if they tweak the model a little bit.  Maybe add in some free theater popcorn?  Snacks make the movie!

Would you pay $50 a month for unlimited theater movies?

Au Bon Pain- Love it or Leave it?

28 Jun

I decided to go to Au Bon Pain (ABP) for lunch today to try their Black Bean Burger.  It comes on flatbread with guac, tomatoes, lettuce, and some sort of “fiery feta spread.”  I also got a medium size cup of grapefruit.

The burger was delicious.  Very filling and not too spicy.  I really liked it!  The grapefruit was ok.  I love grapefruit but I should have known better than to get it at ABP.  It tasted a little weird and I think that’s because it’s near other fruit and there’s probably cross contamination from the serving spoons. 

I’m sad the picture above distorts its size and makes it looks as big as the sandwich, but that cup of grapefruit was tiny.  Here you can see it in comparison to a Post-it note:

 See? Tiny!  And it cost $2.39!  The burger was $5.99 which is comparable to places in the area, but I was shocked at how much the fruit was.  I could buy two entire grapefruits for that price and have money left over!  I realize you’re paying for convenience but still….

So what do you think about ABP?  I’m still on the fence. I’ve been happy with their soups, and I really liked the black bean burger, but I’m not crazy about their prices.  I think they charge too much for what you actually get.  And I would be willing to live with a smaller selection if it meant lower prices.

ABP-love it or leave it?

Ridin Solo- Impromptu Dance Party!

27 Jun

It’s Monday again- boo.  You’re staring down a long work week and wishing the weekend would come faster right?  Well I have something that is guaranteed to make your day better.  This is one of the most amazing solo dance parties I have ever seen, and it happened mere blocks from where I work.  I missed it in person but luckily, DJ MAFFMATIX was able to capture it on film:


Can we talk about the outfit? Clearly the white tank top was too restrictive. A dude’s gotta breathe!   But I am loving the white sneaks, and the jeans that offer a glimpse of butt crack when he drops it low.

I also love all the people walking by without acknowledging the second coming of Michael Jackson in their midst.  Like oh I don’t know, the cop at 2:02.

Which dance move was your favorite?

Bostone Pizza

24 Jun

I usually pack a lunch from home to eat at work because it’s healthier and cheaper.  But sometimes, especially on Fridays, it’s fun to go out and eat.   One of my favorite places in the area is Bostone Pizza.  I think they may have the best BBQ Chicken Sicilian slices in Boston!

 

TGIF- hope you all have some great weekend plans!

Hot Toddy Time

23 Jun

I’ve been feeling a little under the weather lately.  I don’t know if it’s the drastic temperature changes we’ve been having or the fact that I’ve been on the go a lot, but my body is not happy.  Lots of coughing, lots of sniffling…which means it’s definitely time for me to bust out my mom’s go to cure for what ails you- a Hot Toddy. 

Hot Toddies are warm, soothing, and delicious.  There is something about this concoction that never fails to make me feel better.  Mom was right, as usual!  Here’s the recipe.  Try it next time you’re sick.

Mom’s Hot Toddy

Ingredients:
1 mug hot water
1 tea bag (plain black tea)
1 shot of brandy or whiskey
1 Tbsp of honey
1 lemon wedge (or lemon juice)

Directions:
Boil water, then pour into a mug and allow your tea to steep.  I like using English breakfast tea but any black tea will work fine.

Add 1 shot of brandy or whiskey.  Note- my mom is never exact with this.  She likes to say “add as much as you need” so feel free to add a bit more if you want stronger medicine.  It’s best to add a little at a time though so you don’t go overboard.

Squeeze your lemon into the mixture.  If you don’t have a fresh lemon on hand, lemon juice works fine too.  Stir in your honey. 

Let the drink cool off a little and then sip slowly.  For best results, finish this drink while it’s still hot.  The steam will help clear your sinuses too!

Does your family have any cures they swear by?

Summer Sangria

22 Jun

Sangria is one of my favorite summer drinks.  It’s perfect for sipping outside, it’s potent, and best of all, it’s easy to make at home.   You can make it using red or white wine, and you can customize it to your liking.  Here is my version of white sangria.

White Summer Sangria

Ingredients:
1 (750 ml) chilled bottle of Pinot Grigio
1 (750 ml) chilled bottle of sparkling white wine or champagne
1 cup sliced strawberries
1/2 cup red grapes
1 large orange, cut into circles and quartered
1 medium-sized red apple cut into wedges (I used a Fuji apple)

Instructions:
Wash and slice your fruit, then throw everything into a large pitcher

Pour in your bottle of white wine, then pour in your champagne.

Gently stir the fruit so the champagne and wine combine.  If you want to make it colder, or you forgot to chill your alcohol, add some ice to the pitcher.  Place the pitcher in the fridge to allow the fruit to marinate a little. 

While my sangria hangs out in the fridge for a few minutes, I like to put together a little snack plate.  I had cheese, crackers, and salami.  I also added some extra apple slices.  Delicious!  Grab your sangria and enjoy.

 

You can put nearly any type of fruit in sangria. I think next time I might try pears, blueberries, or even mango!

What’s your favorite summer drink?

Happy Last Day of Spring!

20 Jun

Tomorrow is the first day of summer, aka the longest day of the year!  The weather in Boston has been great lately- hot, humid, and summery.  I know some people complain about the heat, but after the never ending winter we’ve had I’m happy to embrace it.  This is coming from someone without a/c in their apartment so you KNOW I mean it!

How would you like to spend the longest day of the year lounging at this pool-

The infinity pool at the Marina Bay Sands Hotel in Singapore is three times the length of an Olympic size pool and it’s 55 stories up.  I’m afraid of heights so the edge freaks me  out, but it does offer some amazing views of the city!

Here’s what it looks like from above: 

And here’s a video of some people enjoying the pool- jealous!

What’s your favorite summer activity?

Father’s Day Gift Ideas

16 Jun

Father’s Day is Sunday June 19th, which means you have only a few days left to get Dad a gift.  Looking for ideas?  Read on.

1. Create Your Own Converse ($67)- perfect for the hipster dad who wants to look good on the playground.  Converse lets him design his own sneaker, right down to the color of the stitching.

2. The Hungover Cookbook ($8)- a great gift for a father who likes to cook and loves to party..sometimes a little too hard. This book is full of recovery meals tailored to how severe the hangover is.  Now your dad can whip up Deviled Kidneys on Toast with ease (seriously)

3. Monogrammed Wine Glasses ($29.95)- so Dad always knows which glass is his. Fancy!

4. Roll Up Drum Kit ($59.95)- let Dad live out his rock star dreams with this roll up drum kit. It plugs into a USB port and includes software for recording his jam sessions.  A guaranteed hit with coworkers!

What are you getting your Dad for Father’s Day?

Boston Pride & Rainbow Cupcakes

16 Jun

The Boston Pride Parade was last weekend; it’s an annual event in the South End  and it was a lot of fun despite so/so weather.  It was gloomy all morning and later rained, but the crowds still showed up.   And we still had our Pride party!  A friend of mine lives right at the start of the parade route and has a makeshift deck outside his third floor windows.  Hello perfect view!

I decided a pride party was the perfect excuse to make Rainbow Cupcakes.  They take some time to make but they’re easy AND delicious.

Rainbow Cupcakes 

Ingredients:

  • 1 box white cake mix (plus eggs, water, and veg. oil like the box calls for)
  • 1 can white frosting (I used Pillsbury Cream Cheese Frosting)
  • red, blue, yellow, and green food coloring
  • cupcake wrappers

Color Directions:

  • Red= 18 drops of red food coloring
  • Orange= 12 drops of yellow, 4 drops of red
  • Yellow=12 drops of yellow
  • Green= 12 drops of green
  • Blue= 12 drops of blue
  • Violet= 9 drops of red, 6 drops of blue

Baking Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl, combine the cake mix with eggs, water, and oil as directed on the box

Divide batter into 6 bowls

Now it’s time to color the batter.  You want one bowl of each rainbow color. See above for how to mix the drops to get each color.  Don’t they look pretty?

 

Line your muffin tin with cupcake wrappers.  I like to spray mine with a little PAM to ensure they don’t stick.  Next, going in order of the rainbow (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, violet) spoon your batter into the cups.

            

As you can see, the colors don’t have to cover one another completely.  Pop these bad boys into the oven for 16-18 minutes, until done.  Mine took 18 minutes.  I ended up with 24 cupcakes total.

Wait until the cupcakes cool completely, then frost them.  I put rainbow sprinkles on mine, just to make them more fun.  Then they were ready for transport to the South End.

Is there anything more festive than a rainbow?  I think not. And did I mention they’re portable enough for deck parties? Always a plus!

 What’s your favorite party treat?