Wednesday, November 16, 2011

I'm Officially Published!

Hello bloggers!

I know I never post in the middle of the week, but I do have a bit of exciting news that will only take a minute. I have officially published my first short story on Kindle!

My short story is called Cyber Stalked and it is currently available at the Kindle Store for $0.99! Click the link to check it out!

Information about it is also available on the Cyber Stalked Facebook page as well along with a link to the free Kindle Reading apps for those who may not own a Kindle.

Thanks for reading and feel free to check out these links! I also promise that this is the last time I will badger you all about it :)

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Happy Veteran's Day!

This past Friday was Veteran’s Day and what better way to spend Veteran’s Day than in the nation’s capital? That’s what I did!
My boyfriend lives up in northern Virginia where he attends school and I was able to visit him this weekend. Not only was it Veteran’s Day, but it was 11/11/11, so I guess you could say I was pretty lucky J
Friday morning we went on a tour of the Pentagon. My boyfriend’s dad works there so he was able to get us in. Going through security was interesting, we had to get our hands checked for chemicals and my boyfriend was accused of dating a minor by the security guards checking IDs. Maybe one day I’ll look my age.
Next we went in to get the grand tour and it was pretty spectacular. There are so many displays throughout the hallways it’s almost like a miniature museum. There were so pictures, displays, and one of the gold plated AKs Saddam Hussein would give to those loyal to him. We also got to see the executive dining rooms, which was really neat.
Right outside the Pentagon is a memorial for all those who died in the September 11 attacks on the Pentagon as well. It is on the side of the building where the plane crashed and there is a small memorial for each person. They were arranged by age and placed almost on a timeline so you could read the names and see how old they were. The youngest was about eight-years-old and the oldest was 81.
After the Pentagon that morning, we got to see Kansas play in concert that night. They were playing with the Army orchestra at Constitution Hall. Granted, I only knew two of their songs, but I still enjoyed the concert and the other songs were really good too.
Best part of the concert though? Watching all the older people jam out to the Kansas songs. Then once “Carry on My Wayward Son” came on, everyone was standing and rocking out.
It was definitely a fun weekend and a great way to celebrate Veteran’s Day!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Drinks All Around!

Have you ever had twenty cases of beverages in your house at one time?
Well, I had never had so many until this past week. My roommate is coordinating a benefit for one of the organizations she’s involved with and was able to get about twenty cases of drinks donated to her by Coca Cola.
She was super excited and I was excited for her… until we had to pick them up and bring them to our apartment.
My roommate has a two door car, which is fine for her to get around. However, stuffing it with sodas and waters was a definite challenge. We had a man help us load up from the place where we picked up the products and even he was surprised we were able to fit it all in.
The products overflowed the backseat and the trunk and once they were loaded up, we were on our own. My roommate carefully drove back to our apartment, hoping that no sodas would fall out of the cases.
We luckily got a parking spot right up front but then the worst part came. Two girls unloading a car of twenty or so packages of beverages is one of the worst ideas ever.
It would be fine if they were just the little twelve packs you get at the store, but most of them were the twenty four packed crates that weight about a million pounds.
We begin to unload and once we get inside, we must figure out where to put them. Not wanting to carry the heavy package for too long, we begin to make piles in the living room.

Hello giant crates of Coca Cola products.

So for the past week or so, our apartment has been filled with crates of water bottles, sodas, and other beverages. It took about thirty minutes for us to unload and it was one of the most intensive workouts I had had in a while.
After intricately stacking them, the water bottles took a tumble. Woops!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Why hello there holiday cookie!
Happy Halloween everyone! In celebration of this holiday, I decided to dedicate a blog post to this ghoulish day.
First of all, I would like to announce that even though I am a bustling college student, I still was able to find time to participate in some holiday festivities.
One of the things I did to celebrate this frightful day was volunteered at a Halloween carnival a few weekends this October at a local amusement park. Since I live in an apartment with no trick-or-treaters, this was as close to it as I was going to get. My roommate and I got all dressed up, got into the amusement park for free, and passed out candy to little kids! Although not all of them were dressed up like they would be on actual Halloween, it was still a lot of fun!
Next, the weekend of Halloween, I carved a pumpkin! I was so excited and I think it turned out quite well! The only negative to my carving was the giant gash I got on my finger. Maybe that’s an exaggeration, but I did somehow give myself a massive blister while carving that amazing pumpkin. Oh well, all in the spirit of the holidays.
My ghost pumpkin!

Along with our festive pumpkins, my roommate and I were able to decorate our apartment a little bit for Halloween. My mom donated to the decoration efforts and gave me adorable light up ghosts and a light up pumpkin. I must say, they’re my favorite decorations. J My roommate had some fall decorations as well so we had them up in the apartment as well. We also have a lovely bowl of candy corn on the coffee table which may or may not be the healthiest of ideas.
Unfortunately, we couldn’t do anything too holiday oriented on actual Halloween. Partly of it was because it was a school night and partly because I had three papers and two exams to study for. Hooray for being a student! My roommate did go out and treat ourselves to desserts at a local restaurant though. What could be sweeter?
Now that Halloween is gone, the countdown begins to my favorite holiday of the year… CHRISTMAS! I’m sorry to rush by you, Halloween, but you do not compare to that joyous holiday.
Until next time!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The More the Merrier? Not quite...

This past weekend, my roommate’s family was in town and they wanted to stay in our apartment to avoid the cost of hotel fees. I had accommodated to guests before but never to the amount of people that would soon be living in our apartment from Friday to Sunday.
My roommate’s family members who were coming down were her mother, aunt, grandmother, and 11-year-old cousin. So there it was, six females in an apartment built for two… I knew this would prove to be an interesting weekend.
They arrived 1:30 that Friday afternoon and were very gracious about staying in our apartment. My roommate cautioned me that they were early to bed and early to rise, something I was not accustomed to but acknowledged none the less.
I had to work that night and would not get in until about 11:30. I quietly crept in and was welcomed to an air mattress that covered the entire living room floor. Her aunt and grandmother were on the air mattress, her cousin on the couch.
I walked back to my roommate’s room and another air mattress was on the ground covering half of the floor in her room. I mimed to my roommate, trying not to disturb her sleeping mother. She came into my room, we talked, and then she decided to get back to bed before waking up her mom.  Did I mention her family is full of light sleepers? Yes. The family members in the living room had to take our clock off the wall because it made too much noise. I don’t blame them, it is kind of annoying.
I stayed up doing various things and didn’t go to bed until I realized it was 2:00 in the morning and I then remembered that the family woke up early. I went to bed, hoping I could sleep through their morning rustling.
I didn’t. Blow driers rang through the halls at 8:00 in the morning. After the first round of hair dryers died down, I tried to go back to sleep, only to be awoken by a second round. After that, I pulled my pillows over my head and tried to go back to sleep.
Then the fire alarms went off. Remember how I wrote about our deranged fire alarms? Well they went off when the family was making breakfast. Any hopes of sleep were out the window. I figured the next morning would be similar.
Luckily, her family woke up at a relatively late 9:30 in the morning, I suppose stocking up on sleep before their car ride home. I did hear them talking throughout the apartment but with five people wandering through the halls, it was bound to happen.
The weekend was fun and her family was all very nice. I enjoyed meeting my roommate's family and I would love to see them all again... maybe just not all at the same time while sleeping in our apartment. They say three is a crowd, well, six is an even bigger crowd.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Not So Handy

My dad is an airline mechanic, so one would think that some of that handy skill would be passed down to his daughter. Well, it definitely wasn’t and I realized this as I tried to hang my curtains up for the tenth time.
Nothing hanging on my walls in the entire apartment was done conventionally. My roommate duck taped our clock to our wall. The curtains in our living room were secured on the wall with the pieces of hooks command stripped to the wall. Luckily when my family came to visit one weekend, my dad secured it properly while he proceeded to laugh at our sad attempt of handy work.
So when hanging up my curtains in my bedroom, I knew I would be in for a challenge. My curtain rod is a $4 extendable rod I picked up at Wal-Mart so I cannot be the only reason for my curtains constantly falling down.
I had no hooks, no nails, and no hammer for this job. So, I grabbed my only available mechanical instrument: packing tape. Some may laugh but strong enough tape has never failed me in the past.
So, I put down a bit of tape on each piece of wall where the curtain rod would be secured from. This did not hold it at first, so I simply moved the curtain rod above the pieces of tape and used the tape as a makeshift shelf. Yes, I do hope to redo this later but at the time, it was my only option.

My beautiful makeshift curtain rod holder made out of scrunched up tape.

Next, I extended the rod as far as it would go before hitting both sides of the wall. I held it and proceeded to secure the middle extendable part with masking tape. Although very wobbly at first, the tape solution seemed to suffice.

Taped securely to make sure that the curtain rod doesn't detract, of course.

I do not recommend this to anyone looking to put up their own curtains but for someone who didn’t know the difference between a nail and a screw, it serves to be a good temporary solution.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

OU/Texas Weekend!

Being a student of the University of Oklahoma, I travelled down to Dallas, Texas this weekend with my roommate for the notorious OU/Texas football game. Although we did not have any kitchen adventures, we had plenty of other adventures together in the city.
David Boren, the president of the university, always cancels Friday classes so it is highly encouraged for students to head down and support our beloved football team. Unfortunately my roommate and I did not attend the game, but we did take this opportunity to travel down to Texas on Thursday evening.
 On Friday, the fun began. We visited Ripley’s Believe it or Not! and the Louis Tussaud's Wax Museum. The exhibits were incredibly entertaining and we posed with numerous celebrities, public figures, and gawked at unbelievable objects.
Part of Ripley's Believe It or Not! Popcorn art.. how neat!

Abraham Lincoln's log cabin, constructed with pennies!

The wax museum! Hundreds of celebrities, famous figures, scenes from movies, and so much more!

Saturday was the day of the big game and even though we did not have tickets to the game, we went off to the Texas State Fair. There was a smorgasbord of fried foods that I don’t think could ever be found anywhere else. 
Fletcher’s famous corndogs were there and traditional fair food, but there were many foods unique to the fair. Fried cheesecake, fried alligator, fried salsa, fried bubble gum, fried butter, fried frozen margarita, fried chicken skin, the list is literally endless. During my time at the fair, I partook in eating deep fried snickers and fried brownies and had a little bit of a corndog. I would have loved to have had more but food was not the only thing to look at during the fair.

Hello, fried Snickers!

 There was a car show and many exhibits where retailers came to sell their things. We checked out one of these buildings and saw the 2011 State Fair Butter Statue - a woman and a bull! There was more to the scene but I couldn't get it all in my camera, but there was also a sign and a little girl on the other side.

2011 Butter Statue!
Of course it's not a fair without the rides and the games, but since we're in Texas, of course there was a petting zoo! Now this was not just any ordinary petting zoo, it had a bunch of exotic animals as well! Zebras, ostriches, emus, camels, kangaroos, camels, llamas, alpacas, and more! Along with these of course were the traditional cows, goats, horses and pigs as well. There were so many baby animals there too, and we could pet them all! It was really great!

Zebras at the petting zoo!

The shows they had at the fair were a lot of fun as well. We went to a dog show and I had been to the BMX biking show before, but my favorite was the pig racing. The little pigs were so adorable and they would all race around the track to get the ultimate reward for a pig: an oreo cookie.

The fair was a lot of fun, but unfortunately we soon had to leave. My visit to Texas was a success, as was the game. I'm sure you all know that we demolished Texas, that's definitely a plus!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Fire Alarm Gone Haywire

I have always been grateful for fire alarms. I am sure they have prevented many house fires and saved many lives. However, what I am not grateful for are unruly fire alarms that go off for no apparent reason. This is the experience I had this weekend while preparing a rather simple meal.
I have never started a fire in the kitchen before (yet) so fire is not always my biggest worry in the kitchen. I was cooking a delicious Asian meal of lo mien and fried rice so I had two of the stove tops going with two pots of boiling water.
Yes there was a bit of steam, but it was just steam. So while I was waiting for my noodles and rice to cook, I decided to make a quick phone call.
I was just chatting on the phone when all of a sudden, the fire alarm started blaring. I jumped and nearly dropped the phone and ran into the kitchen to find… nothing. Nothing was on fire; in fact, there was no smoke, only steam simmered out of my pots.
“What is going on?!” I yelled as I frantically ran through the apartment, trying to find a way to stop the fire alarms. There are fire alarms in every room, and of course they have flashing lights, so the entire apartment was flooded with lights and sounds.
I ran into every room, trying to turn on fants to get rid of whatever would have triggered the fire alarms. Problem was, there was no smoke anywhere and nothing should have triggered the alarms. They were just going haywire.
So, for four minutes I ran around trying to fan away non-existent smoke. I don’t know what is worse, the fact that my fire alarms are so sensitive and my cooking sets them off or the fact that the firemen never showed up and if there were a real fire, I would be toast. Literally.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Never Leave Out The Eggs.

I have said before that I am not the most experienced cook in the world. However, I grew up making baked goods from boxed mixes. Brownies, cupcakes, and cakes became the one thing I actually knew how to make. So when my roommate and I decided to make brownies one night, who would have thought anything would go wrong?
Well, my roommate is obsessed with eggs and she eats them basically every day. We had just made dinner, hers being two egg salad sandwiches, when we decided on our dessert of choice.
“Uh, I actually hardboiled the last of our eggs,” my roommate said as she looked down at her dinner.
“Will hardboiled eggs not work in brownie mix?” I asked, knowing this was a stupid question but desperate for a resolution to our egg problem.
“I’ll just look up substitutes online!” my roommate exclaimed as she jumped from the table to fetch her laptop. She stumbled upon a seemingly trustworthy site. The site had several egg substitutes listed, including the combination we picked: baking soda and warm water.
“What does ‘leavened” mean?” I inquired, reading the word in parentheses next to the instructions. Neither of us knew so we decided to just give the substitute a shot, ignoring whatever “leavened” meant.
We mixed the ingredients in as usual and then put in two teaspoons of baking soda and two tablespoons of warm water. We mixed the batter and then dumped it into a pan. The consistency was noticeably different than a normal mix but we figured it would cook the same.
After popping the pan in the oven, we decided to lick the bowl. Something about the batter tasted a little funny as well, but we figured the heat would kill off the aftertaste.
Well it didn’t. It got worse. We opened the oven after the timer rang to be greeted by one of the worst sights we had seen.
Our disgusting creation.

The brownies looked like we had just took a shovel to a tar pit and plopped it into a pan. For whatever reason, we even tried tasting this disasterous confection with awful results. It did not even taste like chocolate and one bite was plenty.

We obviously had to dump the mush pile because it was not at all edible. So the moral of the story? Never leave out the eggs.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Roasting Marshmallows Over An Open Fire... Sort Of.

I have only been camping three times in my life. However, each time I would roast marshmallows over the fire and make delicious s’mores. The combination of crunch graham cracker, gooey marshmallow, and rich chocolate always drove my taste buds crazy. Unfortunately, living in an apartment, I can’t just make a fire in the backyard. Nor can I just make a fire in the fireplace and roast them because I don’t have a fireplace. So my roommate and I thought of the next best thing: make s’mores in the kitchen!
The first few times we tried to make s’mores we popped them in the microwave. I had made s’mores in the microwave with my boyfriend before so I thought that this couldn’t be any different.  Well, when I made them with my boyfriend, we used the marshmallow puff crème instead of real marshmallows. I forgot that we made this substitution because marshmallows blow up to twenty times their natural size and then just taste weird.
So, my roommate and I put the s’more together with marshmallows and all and put in the microwave. The marshmallows blew up and knocked off the graham cracker. After they were done, we tried to taste them and they were just weird. It took a minute just to chew the marshmallow because the microwave had morphed it so badly.
My roommate and I decided that this would not work. So, she pointed out the fact that we had a gas oven and could roast the marshmallows over the burners. I had no idea what gas oven meant, I thought she was saying our oven ran on gasoline but I later found out that just means that stuff burns if you let it hover over the burners. So that’s exactly what we did!
We stuck our marshmallows onto forks and watched the marshmallows toast over the burner. The first time it was done, our marshmallows did catch on fire but we’re still learning!

Roasting marshmallows over our oven burner! Medal forks were probably not the best idea with the heat..

The marshmallows turned out toasted to perfection! We put them over chocolate and graham crackers and it tasted (almost) as good as if it were over a real campfire! 

The finished product! So delicious and the chocolate actually ended up melting!

Saturday, September 10, 2011


Crickets have invaded my apartment. I thought my midnight cricket incident would be a onetime occurrence, but this has proven to be false. Here is how the cricket crisis has escalated.
Apparently at the beginning of every month, the apartment complex sprays for bugs. This would be all fine and dandy but of course when this happens, all the bugs retreat down to the first floor to die or to hide. Unfortunately these lucky bugs decided to retreat and take refuge in the apartment.
During the evenings, my roommate and I began hearing loud cricket noises and for a while we just figured they were outside.  We then noticed that these cricket noises continued throughout the day and would get even louder at night.
We quickly began finding crickets everywhere in the apartment. In the hallway, under chairs, under the couch, in the shower, these bugs began popping up everywhere until our cricket tally went up to nine. Nine live crickets, it’s insane!
My roommate and I have come to the conclusion that they are probably living in our vents, so we’ve had to seal off our vents. These crickets are also getting smarter as they come out of hiding, one by one. They’re hiding against the wall so we can’t catch them in our Tupperware containers and one could even fly (that one was terrifying).
Unfortunately, not all of the crickets have been released alive. We’ve lost some legs in the process and the cricket hiding out in the shower had a cricket heart attack when we slammed the Tupperware down on the tile.
According to the maintenance workers, this problem should diminish once the weather cools down. But it looks as for the rest of September, my roommate and I must stake out the place and win our apartment back from the cricket invaders!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Lucky Cricket? Not at Midnight..

It was close to midnight and my roommate and I were just about ready to go to bed. I was in my room and she was in the bathroom brushing her teeth when she yelled to me to come in the bathroom.
“Do you hear that?” she asked me as we both went silent. The sound of little legs came from above the bathroom mirror but went away shortly after. We looked at each other, and then up above the mirror again. A minute or two went by and still nothing, so we thought that maybe it was nothing.
I picked up my toothbrush and looked down at it to put on the toothpaste on it when my roommate screamed. I nearly dropped my toothbrush when I looked up and saw a huge cricket dangling from the top of the mirror.  
We both screamed and started running around, closing doors so it couldn’t get into our rooms. We then ran to the kitchen, grabbed flyswatters and returned to meet our foe.
The cricket had made it down onto the floor. With every hop it made, we let out another shriek.
“We can’t kill it, it’s too big!” I exclaimed to my roommate. She agreed and tried throwing a laundry basket on top of it to trap it. Quickly realizing that he could escape through, we had to think smaller.
Retreating back to the kitchen, we grabbed a small Tupperware container. After circling him, we threw the container on top of him, trapping him in mid-hop.
Now we had to figure out what to do with this bug. We didn’t have the hearts to kill him, but there was no way we would touch him.
“Let’s scoot him out!” my roommate yelled as the cricket continuously knocked on the top of the container, trying to jump away. We agreed this would be best and gingerly scooted the cricket across our entire apartment to the front door.
I got up to open the front door as my roommate held the Tupperware container down. We kept the flyswatters at the ready so we could bat the cricket out if he tried to hop back in through the door.
On the count of three, I opened the door and my roommate flung him out of the container. We quickly slammed the door and had a bit of a celebration after our triumphant victory.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

A Welcome With Some Bad Pancakes!

Hello fellow bloggers!

Last weekend I moved into my first apartment and am officially living on my own for the first time! Granted, last year I live in the university dorms but they baby you so much there, it didn’t seem to count. Already I have begun to encounter the difficulties of taking care of myself for the first time in my life. Not to say I’ve never been independent, I’ve just always had my parents or a resident advisor around.

As pathetic as it sounds, I never really learned how to cook when I lived at home and I am not much of a house maker at all. Not that I’m dumb or anything, I’ve just never done some things that my roommate has been doing her whole life. She finds it funny that I’ve never used a dishwasher or had no idea that you could turn on a light in the oven to see if whatever is in there is fully cooked. I know! It’s terrible.

So, I thought it would be interesting to blog about my experiences in my new apartment. I’ll update with all sorts of stories that I encounter along the way through my first year in a new apartment. What better way to start this blog than with a story that happened just this morning?

I have mentioned above that I cannot cook. I was not kidding. I have burnt tuna helper so bad I had to scrub the bowl for hours. I had never used a pasta strainer before and using the oven is completely baffling to me. At home, my two staple appliances were the toaster and the microwave, and possibly for good reason.

My roommate and I thought it would be fun to make chocolate chip pancakes for breakfast since it was the weekend. Why she let me help her, I may never know. She mixes the batter without any problems and then makes the fatal decision to let us both pour the mix onto the pan and flip them. When it was my turn to pour the batter, two things happened. Firstly, I burnt my pancakes. Secondly, I flipped them off of the pan… and onto the oven. Master Chef? I think not.

Here is the horrific outcome, in the prettiest form I could make them. If it is any consolation, they tasted a lot better than they looked.

I hope you enjoyed reading and this is only the beginning of my wonderous adventures! Thanks again!