A Healthy Dose of Parents

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Whenever I get cranky for an extended period* of time, Matt asks me one of  three questions:

  1. When was the last time you worked out?
  2. Are you having “lady” problems?**
  3. Did I do something wrong?***

If none of these things seem to be the reason of my crankiness, Matt knows that it is probably time for some Brethauer family bonding.

“Take two days with your parents/sister and call me in the morning.”

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So this weekend, as Matt leave for the land of the Golden Dome and Touch Down Jesus to cheer on his overrated beloved football team, my parents were called in to do some damage control.  While I had seen my parents relatively recently at a family get-together in Pennsylvania, I think the problem was that they hadn’t come to visit me since Matt and I moved to New Jersey. I found it very unsettling that (1) my parents didn’t have a good mental image of me in my new apartment and (2) they couldn’t give accurate opinions on furniture placement, rug patterns or dining room chair styles.

Well, thankfully, my parents came to visit me this weekend to address these concerns.

We had a great weekend that included a few of the following highlights:

  • We volunteered with Coalition for the Homeless and distributed hundreds of meals to New Yorkers in need.

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  • Celebrated Oktoberfest with a beer and pretzel at Pilsner Haus

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  • Remembered why it is great to be an American in Liberty State Park

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It was a great weekend that began with a NH gift basket: REAL maple syrup from the homeland, tomatoes from their local farm and homemade cookies. It ended with hugs and promises to return (hopefully soon)! It was just what the doctor my loving husband ordered.

 

 

*I had to include this descriptor because, as most of you know, I can get cranky often. The biggest triggers of my short-term crankiness are when I am tired or hungry. And forget it when I am both. Hangry Molly comes out and she is not pleasant.

** Sorry if this is TMI, but it wouldn’t seem realistic if I didn’t include it.

*** No honey, you never do anything that upsets me. Oh wait… we are trying to keep this realistic.

Falling in Love with Fall

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Sunday was the first day of Fall, my absolute favorite season. There is nothing better a beautiful fall day and a pumpkin latte. Fall is really the only season where a vest makes sense, pumpkin beer is on tap at nearly ever bar and you see more football jerseys than any other article of clothing.

Since it is officially a new season, what better way to start fresh then with a Fall To-Do List. Check out some of the things I want to do this Fall, and let me know what you are looking forward to.

Fall To-Dos:

  1. Make three new soups. I am thinking thai pumpkin soup, white velvet soup, and sweet potato soup with spicy jalapeno
  2. Go apple picking (Matt, don’t let me down) and make (1) apple sauce, (2) an apple pie with a perfect, Martha Stewart-esk, lattice crust and (3) deep fried apple pie bites
  3. Host a pre-football game brunch at our new apartment
  4. Run the New York City Marathon on November 3rd (well, I guess it is official now… I announced it on the blog, I’ve got to do it!)
  5. Carve a pumpkin
  6. Visit my sister in VA
  7. Volunteer with at least 4 different Robin Hood funded programs.
  8. Buy our very first REAL Christmas tree. and because we have 15′ high ceilings in our new apartment, I’ll be eyeing a big one!
  9. Make these bedside tables: For Me, For Matt
  10. Go on a Hike. I hear Bear Mountain is good but welcome other suggestions!

National Cheeseburger Day

Happy National Cheeseburger Day!

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In honor of the holiday, Matt and I planned to have some delicious burgers on the grill. Unfortunately, when we I unwrapped the patties, which had been in the freeze for a few weeks, they looked like this:

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Now, the jury is still out on whether or not these were actually bad. They didn’t smell bad, and most times, I will eat pretty much anything as long as it doesn’t smell horrible. Not surprisingly, Matt has other, much higher standards. Prince Englehardt won’t eat anything that isn’t right out of the package. This includes day old left overs or anything that has been put in the freezer. The Princess had her issues with a pea. This Prince has his “old” food.

Needless to say the slight grey edges of the meat were just too much for him. I will say, one time Matt got horrible food poisoning after eating a meal I looked for him (we think it was from ground beef). For a few hours, I was slightly concerned that I might have killed my husband. So… I can understand his sensitivity.

Thankfully, I went to the grocery store on Monday and stocked up on some frozen dinners (the one thing besides ice cream that Matt will eat that comes out of the freezer) so now we have having this:

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Not quite the National Cheeseburger celebration I had hoped for. We’ll just think of this as a dry run for National Frozen Food Day (I think it falls right after “National Bad Housewife Day”).

 

So What’s Going on the World These Days?

A few weeks ago Matt and I started watching HBO’s The Newsroom. We had watched one or two episodes when it first came out but we just couldn’t’ get into in. But then after finishing a few other series on demand/netflix (The Tudors, The Good Wife and The Walking Dead all completed in a few weeks of binge watching) we were looking for another show to fill our evenings, particularly during the week since all of our regular TV shows (Mad Men, Breaking Bad, Boardwalk and Game of Thrones) are all on Sundays. So a few weeks ago we started watching Newsroom again.

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For some reason, this time it stuck. After watching a few episodes back-to-back, Matt and I looked at each other and thought “man, I wish there was something like this in real life – you know, where you can find out what’s going on in the world on a nightly basis.” Half joking/half serious, that led us to make a very tough decision.

Since I graduated college and entered the real world — well, more importantly, got a TV in my bedroom, I’ve been a die hard Today Show fan. As soon as I get out of the shower, I put on NBC and spend the next 30-60 minutes with my good friend Matt Lauer and whomever his lady-of-the moment is, be it Katie Couric, Meredith Vieira, Ann Curry (briefly) or now, Savannah Guthrie. Sadly, over the years, the show has lost its focus and covers more gossip than news. So, ladies and gentleman… the Englehauer household has made the decision to switch our morning programming to MSNBC (pause for conservatives to freak out and tell me it is super liberal).

Matt tried to convince me that FOX would be a good choice, since it is so “fair and balanced. ” I laughed in him face. We decided to give MSNBC a try – this way we aren’t entirely abandoning the NBC family. But we’ll see how it goes – in an ideal world we would be watching ACN and Will McAvoy.

In another effort to be more connected to the news of the real world (well, that’s not entirely fair, since The Newsroom does cover “real” news – it is just slightly dated) I’ve also been trying to make more of an effort to read the news online. My parents were die hard newspaper readers, flipping through two papers every morning with their coffee. Unfortunately, I didn’t inherit this trait. Thankfully, I found a site that helps a bit with my inability to understand intellectual journalism; the Skimm.

By signing up for this service, I receive a daily email that summarizes what’s going on in the news in a fun way. Their style of writing/reporting probably isn’t for everyone; but for some, it totally works. I am pretty sure Neal Sampat is the digital genius behind this site.