Saturday, March 31, 2012

Springtime Fun!

I consider myself an "in-betweener" when it comes to the seasons. My favorite times of the year are when spring turns into summer and summer into fall. The temperatures always seem to be perfect in MN, and I just love it! Now that spring is officially here (although I'm still waiting for Mother Nature to have one more laugh and dump another load of snow on us), I thought I'd share some fun spring items I recently found on Etsy:

1) Hand Painted Flats

2) Coffee Cup Sleeve with Clouds and Rain (LOVE this!)

3) Oh Happy Day / Oh Crappy Day Ring Set

4) Gray Cross Shoulder Body Bag with Cowhide Leather Strap

5) Cloud Shaped Pillow

Happy spring! :)

Friday, March 23, 2012

From the Desk of Don Draper

Any Mad Men fans out there? I had never heard of the show until the summer of 2010, when I started working at a PR agency. A few of my co-workers were obsessed with the show, and after a couple of episodes I was hooked and watched the previous seasons via NetFlix. With season 5 premiering this weekend, I came across this fun info-graphic on the costs of 1962 vs. today.

What stuck out the most to me was the $10/night hotel, and the total revolving debt (the $21.31 from 1968 actually made me laugh).

Be sure to watch the two-hour season 5 premiere this Sunday, March 25th at 8p.m. CT on AMC - I can't WAIT!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

I Love Food Trucks, Yes I Do! Well, Maybe Only One But Still...

As I venture on with this new blog, you will come to understand that I am a picky eater. Actually "picky" doesn't even begin to describe what I am - quirky might be a better word. I'm very predictable when it comes to eating, and don't particularly enjoy trying new food (although I will do it). Let's go through some of my eating quirks shall we?
  • No green vegetables (except lettuce) 
  • The only vegetables I will eat are mashed potatoes, corn, carrots and cauliflower (but I will only eat carrots and cauliflower uncooked with dip)  
  • I don't like sea food (except fresh-caught MN fish doused in ketchup)
  • No-go with anything spicier than Chipotle's Chicken Tacos
  • I love mustard and guacamole (which I'm told is bizarre since I'm so picky)
  • If there are chicken strips on the menu, there's a 99% chance that I will order them
There are so many more, but I just don't have the room to list them all. In all honesty, I WISH I weren't so particular about eating, and I wish I had taste-buds that loved coffee, but I just don't. Granted, I've gotten a lot better than when I was a kid, but I admit it's still ridiculous.

Now, back to the actual subject of this post: food trucks. Well actually, it's just one food truck in particular that I'm enamored with - Fork in the Road Truck. I work in downtown St.Paul, and last summer my co-worker noticed a Food Truck in Mears Park. It took him a while to convince me to go with him, but I eventually did and it ended up being a nice break from the office to go outside and enjoy the beautiful MN weather - little did I know this would be the start to an obsession that would consume me the entire summer! The first time I went, you can my imagine my apprehension as I stared at a menu similar to this one:
Frantically searching for a "Michelle-friendly" item, I realized I was going to have to go out of my comfort zone and try something new (le sigh). I opted for the BBQ Pulled Pork Grilled Cheese because of the simple fact that I love both pulled pork and grilled cheese sandwiches and thought it was the safest choice. Boy was I right. It was the most fantastic sandwich I'd ever eaten, and not only is it the item that I always order (aside from ordering the pulled pork tacos one time - which were also delicious), Fork in the Road Truck is the only food truck I order from. Even with the St.Paul Food Truck Food Court, Fork in the Road Truck has stolen my heart (and stomach)! Why stray from something that you know is absolutely delicious?
The BBQ Pulled Pork Grilled Cheese sandwich has the perfect BBQ to cheese ratio. I've had BBQ pulled pork where it's almost unbearable, and Fork in the Road has perfected the amount in their sandwiches - it's not overwhelming but you can still tell it's BBQ. Add to that two toasted slices of bread and you're in heaven. I usually order mine w/o onions (surprise surprise), and typically get a side of Avocado Garlic Mayo to dip my chips in - yummy!! I also love the ladies of Fork in the Road, Amy and Kari. They always have a smile on their face, even when it's 90 degrees and there's a line of 30 people! Plus, they are extremely dedicated! Granted we didn't exactly have the typical MN winter this year, but they were out in the truck pretty much all winter. Even when they weren't, they still took catering orders which was lucky for my co-workers and I as we were able to get our Fork in the Road fix in January!

Be sure to follow them on Twitter/Facebook for their location, and check them out this summer - it's hard to miss that bright orange truck!

Twitter: @forkNroadtruck

(photos from Fork in the Road Truck's Facebook page!)

Friday, March 9, 2012

First Post! Take Shelter

Yay for my very first post! I'm really excited to finally have a blog, and what better way to start it off than with a movie review? 

Rating - 4 out of 5 stars!

In Take Shelter, Michael Shannon plays Curtis LaForche - a hard-working, middle-class family man  who has a dream about an apocalyptic rain storm. He becomes plagued with nightmares that get more intense as time goes on, and then he starts having hallucinations during the day. He is convinced that a giant storm is coming, and obsesses over building an underground storm shelter in his backyard to protect his family from impeding doom. The question is: is he witnessing a sign, or simply losing his mind? 

Michael Shannon is absolutely amazing at portraying someone who is trying so hard to remain "normal" to friends and family, while a deep internal war is going on within him (not only that, the guy is REALLY creepy looking!). Director Jeff Nichols sets the perfect pace for the film, and we are right there with Curtis as he struggles to understand what is happening to him.

But Take Shelter isn't just about Curtis, it's also about his family and their ability to cope with Curtis's strange behavior. Jessica Chastain plays Curtis's wife Samantha whose patience and understanding is beyond me. She is a fierce mother and wife who is determined to help her husband anyway she can.

This is an incredible movie that questions our own (and others) sanity, and is a brilliant psychological thriller.