a homemade dinner in spain

Monday, June 27, 2011

don’t be deceived – we did not rub guacamole all over our faces.  those are facial masks we purchased at the grocery store (when we weren’t buying donuts or baby pinks), which we wore while we made guacamole.
and when i say we wore these while making guacamole, i mean that we wore these while caroline made guacamole and i stood to the side, stealing samples and telling her to add more tomatoes.
this is what happens when you have olive-toned skin; you say things like "caroline, it's just not showing up on my face very well....why is yours so much greener?"  and then you realize: you're basically shrek.

   speaking of shrek..... he did this all on his own and surprised us.
IMG_0880then sergio took to the kitchen to prepare some sort of cold soup, the name of which i don’t remember.
though i should have remembered the name because i need to make a point of never eating this soup again.
(it’s okay, sergi doesn’t even know what a blog is, let alone does not read mine.)IMG_0873all i know is that the soup contained a lot of egg, a lot of mayonnaise, a lot of tomato puree and a lot of garlic.  like, this much garlic…
but look! it’s the non-shrek version of shrek! (on the very left)IMG_0892
because the soup wasn't our favorite, my dinner that night consisted of 1/2 a bag of chips and the majority of that guacamole.  and if we’re being honest here, there was probably a lot of dessert involved, too.
suffice it to say, the tapas were better.

so now you know the secret.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Sometimes I get the question, “How can you afford to travel all these places?” in the comment box.  And the answer is, I can’t really afford it.  So in order to fund my travel addiction, I do things like eat popsicles for dinner.  And sell my clothes on ebay.  And use my webcam as a mirror. 
Yes, I know it doesn’t cost anything to look in the mirror.  But it does cost to buy a new light bulb for your windowless (and therefore sunlight-less) bathroom.  And I’m moving out of this place in a few days so you better believe I’m not wasting the extra few Euros on a light bulb I won’t even be enjoying come July 1st – Euros that could be spent on gelato.  Or pastries.  Or baby pinks.  Or, yeah, something that’s actually travel-related, I suppose…
Anyway, webcam hair and makeup sessions are actually much more effective than you’d think.  
Although now I realize I need to cut my bangs.  But do I want to buy a pair of scissors?
And you thought Rick Steves was the master of Europe on a shoestring. 

while in spain…

Monday, June 20, 2011

while in spain, caroline and i managed to convince the boys that we needed to make daily trips to the neighborhood grocery store.  why?  because there was a dunkin donuts inside that neighborhood grocery store.
DSC00617 my go-to donut of choice?  a heart-shaped strawberry frosted donut.DSC00618 also, as sugary cereal doesn’t really exist in germany, we took full advantage of the spanish cereal aisles.
(don’t be fooled by the special k and corn flakes; those were not the types of cereal we were buying.)
DSC00622  oh, and here we are on my most favorite of aisles: the ‘baby pink’ aisle.
these treats, below, are not baby pinks, but they resemble them in size.
DSC00625  i’m not sure how to explain what baby pinks (seen below) are, other than to describe them as tiny, little pieces of heaven (to be served with milk, always).  i guess you could start by imagining a strawberry frosted cupcake with four corners – if strawberry frosted cupcakes typically sold for the price of 13 euro cents each.
with prices that low, how could we not load our carts by the handful each time we stopped at the grocery store?
DSC00627        and here is sergi’s face, upon the realization that he’d been driving us to the grocery store each day for the sole purpose of buying donuts and baby pinks:
girls girls
my only regret?  not filling my suitcase with baby pinks before the journey home.  i’d kill for one of those right about now.  i have milk in the fridge and everything…

my favorite photo, ever.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

when sarah asked me to email her my favorite photo for a series on her blog, i didn’t know what to choose.

then my mom randomly emailed me this photo of my dad and i knew.  the story behind why i love it can be read here.

jack and rusty

so, to my dad:  happy father’s day!  please note that your gift (along with your belated birthday present) will be arriving within the next 7 days…sorry about the delay…blame it on the time zone difference?

warning: spending time in spain can cause severe loss of english skills

Friday, June 17, 2011


when caroline and i lived in salzburg and spent so much time with the spanish boys, we noticed our english-speaking abilities took a turn for the worse; a very big, very bad turn for the worse. 

you see, the boys speak english and speak it well (relatively speaking), but…

well, anyone who speaks spanish should be familiar with the articles, “la, el” and “un(o), una”.  these articles translate, in a literal sense, to “the, the” and “one, one” respectively.  there is no direct translation for the article “a” and the boys, therefore, have never really mastered use of the article “a”. 

as a result of this, they say things like, “you are looking like one princess!” or, “we can eat one meal and then make one siesta” (oh, and in their version of the english, the verb ‘make’ can be interchanged with a surprisingly wide variety of other verbs).

caroline and i, during our most recent trip to spain, noticed that we had, once again, begun to sound nothing at all like native english speakers.

an example?

i was editing a video on my computer and caroline wanted a preview before i had applied the finishing touches.  i denied her request by saying, “no, i am making one suspense” to which she replied, “that is one annoying.  you are one make me mad”. 

after these fragmented sentences -- which we’d spoken so naturally – had fully registered with us, we looked at each other, horrified, and said, “oh, no… it’s happening again”.  

what’s funny is that, while this strange ‘spanish boy language’ may sound like nonsense to an outsider, the boys totally ‘got’ it.

during our hike, for instance, caroline and i noticed a cute boy sitting on a ledge outside the alhambra.  i commented to caroline, “i see one well-dressed individual!” and she added, “i see one ‘like’ ”.  sergio, having overheard us, turned around and said, “okay, okay, give me your camera, i’ll take a photo of you and the boy”.

DSC00598i see one well dressed individual. i see one like.

^^  caroline, me, and one ‘like’ ^^

Conversations with a Polish boy, part 7 (the screen-shot version).

Thursday, June 16, 2011


i cannot read it without laughing out loud.

Conversations with a Polish boy, part 6.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

him: you know that song "not in me, not in you" by roxette?
me: no.
him: we heard it on the radio earlier.
me: we heard "knowing me, knowing you" by abba.
him: yeah, that's the same song.
him: i feel like i've been digging ditches 5 days in a row.
me: what?
him: i said i feel like i've been digging ditches 5 days in a row.
me: have you?
him: of course not.
me: what does that mean?
him: it means i had to wake up early today and i'm tired...obviously.
[.....again, obviously.]

him: i worked for an american company once. it was so strange but strange in a good way.
me: how was it strange?
him: nobody called the men 'sir' and nobody called the women 'madame'.
me: .....i don't think anyone in america calls anyone 'madame'.
him: so what do you call women, formally?
me: ma'am.
him: ma'am instead of madame? that's funny. must be a southern thing.
[yeah, because i hear in the northern states, everyone says 'yes, madame' and ‘no, madame’.]
him: what do you call the yellow part of an egg?
me: the yolk.
him: so when you're making breakfast and you hand someone a plate of eggs do they say, "Yooooooo.....lk. Thanks for the yolk." ?
me: no. they do not say that.
[i should mention there were cool hand gestures involved in his question.]

spain: alhambra (continued)

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

we walked a total of 18.90726354 miles this day.

and yes, that is an exact calculation.

and as i mentioned in the previous post, there were a lot of stairs involved.

posing for photos like this (see below) helped fight the fatigue.

DSC005829.2 9.3  9.5 9.6         DSC005779.1        DSC00584 DSC00585 DSC00586 DSC00587 DSC00593    DSC00594      DSC00595  DSC00602 DSC00603 DSC00604  DSC00607DSC00588

needless to say, after what felt like covering the entire city of granada on foot, i slept very well that night.

spain: alhambra

Monday, June 13, 2011

the only thing i have to say about this day:
eating donuts and napoli chocolate croissants before a 5 hour walk through the city of granada and up to the top of alhambra is not advisable... 
especially when a million stairs are involved.
…but those donuts and napoli chocolate croissants were so good.
also the most amazing donuts DSC00522    DSC00533DSC00539DSC00541DSC00542DSC00535DSC00528  (sergi’s reaction to me saying, “i think i’m going to vomit, can we sit down?”)           DSC00544  DSC00546 DSC00547      9            DSC00562
granada is a very pretty city, don’t you think?