Monday, January 31, 2011

meat & potatoes.

Last week, Danny picked up some meat and decided to make steak and baked potatoes for dinner. Between you and me, in the past Danny's struggled a little bit with cooking meat... either too done, charred on the outside and raw on the inside, or the worst thing ever - slicing into glassy chicken. Makes me shiver thinking about it.

Well, I guess practice makes perfect because he seriously cooked last week's meal to perfection. He invited Angela to join us for dinner so the pressure was really on. He made a homemade rub for the steak which added a smokey, crunchy crust to the medium rare meat that was sprinkled with blue cheese crumbles - yum. Plus he had all fresh fixings for baked potatoes. Delish. 

He sent us girls out for a cocktail at NOCA while he prepared everything. We came home with a bottle of wine and all enjoyed a delicious weeknight dinner. He even did all the clean up... what a guy. 
{introducing Aunt Chilada to one of my favorite cocktails that includes fresh jalapeno. she's hooked.} 

Sunday, January 30, 2011


Danny is currently at the movies with Alex watching The Mechanic. Seemed like the perfect flick for the boys. The movie poster is a giant gun made out of a bunch of little guns. Eh, yeah.

I wonder if he misses me just a little bit right now. Why? Well because we were at the movies last weekend and realized how many little rituals are involved in our simple outings to the theater... the parking, the snacks, the seats, the preview thumb ratings. I smile thinking about all the times we've done this exact same routine over the past eight years. Funny to think that movie dates used to be a little awkward... now it almost feels awkward to go without each other. It's just one of our things and we have it down pat.

...we always...
park on Quail at the Esplanade. 
divide and conquer snacks & seats. 
popcorn, jalapenos & a large cherry coke. 
break right entering the theater.
sit top middle.*
thumb rate each preview. 
thumb rate at the end of the movie.

*Isn't it funny how everyone has such a personal preference on theater seats? It's kinda funny to go with different people and see where they like to sit.

We recently saw The King's Speech and loved it. Other top movies on our list right now include The Kids Are All Right, The Fighter, True Grit and Black Swan. I guess we've seen quite a few movies lately. In fact, we've seen 8/10 nominees for Best Picture at the Academy Awards... what are your recent picks?

danny & colbs take on the cappuccino machine.

One moring in Newport Beach over the holiday break, I woke up to Colbs and Ting giggling in the kitchen as they tried to set-up Jake's new Christmas gift - a cappuccino maker.

At one point they realized they were brewing the styrofoam accidentally left in the machine (oops), then foam started exploding everywhere and finally I heard a loud OUCH when Danny realized the metal was hot. It was pretty entertaining but all ended well with three little cups of joe.

happy sunday to you.
xo, the tings

Friday, January 28, 2011

sometimes you just need something sweet.

{a slice of red velvet cake + cream cheese frosting from tammie co. bakery}

happy friday
splurge a little this weekend.

Thursday, January 27, 2011


For as long as I can remember, my top new year's resolution has been to stop dwelling. It's bad - I'm a major dweller and fixate on hindsight. Everything from food orders at restaurants and missed opportunities on cheap airline tickets to things I should have done during our grease fire or the big decisions we're all forced to make about our lives, dogs, loved ones, jobs... 

Dwelling doesn't sound like much of an issue but it is for me. These little things literally eat me alive. While I've gotten better over the years, I still find myself loosing tons of sleep and fixating on things that, "I should have done," that "we should have thought about it," saying over and over, "why didn't I just do that?" ... It seems silly, right? I know. It is to me too but I can't help it.

Years ago, Danny finally snapped at me (and he rarely gets mad at me) because he said I started every sentence with, "I Wish." It drove him nuts to think I was never 100% happy. "I wish I would have ordered that." "I wish we would have done this at our wedding." "I wish I would have thought of this sooner." His genuine annoyance really helped me realize that it's not a very becoming trait and I need not fret over such trivial things. Thanks to him I've become much more conscious of my "I wish" habit.

However, the control freak in me can't help but dwell on missed opportunities or seemingly dumb mistakes. But that's life right? At least that's what Danny tells me... "It is what it is, babe. Just relax. It will work out." I know he's right since I'm a big believer in the old "everything happens for a reason" but sometimes that just doesn't help settle my dwelling ways. I wish I could take a "let it go" pill... anyone know of anything like that?

I'm trying hard to get better. Even publicly admitting this is helping me. We're currently in the midst of a situation that is really testing my "quit dwelling" resolution. Last night was filled with "wtfs? why didn't we?" but I also deep down know that there's a reason. Already in 2011, I've seen a couple seemingly bad things turn out to have been for the better. I love when you have that moment - sometimes days, sometimes weeks or months - when everything suddenly makes sense.

If you're reading this, consider this your permission to yell at me the next time you catch me dwelling or starting my sentence with, "I wish." I have a great life... a wonderful life and I need to learn to let the past go and have faith that things have a mysterious way of working out...

Let's face it. Everyone has 20/20 hindsight. What fun would life be without some surprises?

for pet owners: the comfy cone.

There's nothing more heartbreaking than watching your pet try to acclimate to a hard, plastic cone (seen here and here). Chances are, they've probably just undergone some sort of procedure and the last thing you want is for them to be horribly uncomfortable.

Introducing the Comfy Cone. It's soft which is great for your pet and your walls (don't you cringe each time they run into them?).

For $15, it's worth purchasing a Comfy Cone now and having it on-hand in case of a last minute procedure.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

two thumbs up soup.

I think we have a new hobby - cooking. Over the years, Ting and I have started cooking a lot and we really enjoy it. We both find it relaxing and a nice way to spend time together after a long day at work.

Years ago, our friend gave us the Eating For Life cookbook and we love it. The ingredients aren't all fancy, the recipes are easy and pretty healthy. We just tried this one and passed it along to Colby. Both her and Jake loved it - and Jake isn't typically a soup person. We all found it to be filling with lots of leftovers for lunch.

Santa Fe Chicken Soup
⅓ cup brown rice (uncooked)
4 portions chicken breast (about 1lb)
1 lime, halved
2 tsp low sodium taco seasoning
6 corn tortillas
1 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
½ onion, chopped
1 can (4 oz.) diced green chilies
6 cups fat-free, reduced sodium chicken broth
4 tbsp salsa
¼ cup fat-free sour cream
2 tbsp cilantro, chopped

*Makes 4 generous servings: 335 calories & 34 grams of protein per serving

Cook brown rice according to package instructions. While the rice is cooking, place chicken breasts in a shallow dish; cover with lime juice, and lightly coat both sides with taco seasoning. Then place chicken on a hot pan and cook for approx 6 minutes on each side. Let the chicken cool slightly, then cut it into strips, set aside.

Preheat oven to 350° F and cut corn tortillas into ½ inch strips, then place them on a baking sheet. Bake for about 15 minutes or until they are crispy, then set aside.

While the tortilla strips are baking, heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add garlic and onion; sauté until the onion is transparent, about 8 minutes.

Add cooked rice to the pot and sauté for 3 minutes. Add green chilies and sauté for 2 more minutes. Then pour fat-free chicken broth into the mixture and bring it to a boil. Add sliced chicken and reduce heat to low. Simmer for about 25 minutes.

Place a few baked tortilla strips in the bottom of bowls, and spoon about a fourth of the soup into each. Garnish each bowl with a few more tortilla strips, a spoonful of salsa, fat-free sour cream and cilantro.

{colby and i often swap photos of our culinary creations. this is her soup. nice work, dude}

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

barrett jackson boys.

Danny may not have got his dad's height, but he did inhert his dad's love of cars. Danny grew up going to car auctions and restoring classics with his dad. Both big time car enthusiasts, Danny scored VIP sponsor passes for Scottsdale's Barrett Jackson, coined "the world's greatest collector car auction." Their passes granted them All Access plus 10 free drinks - each. Wowza. Needless to say, they spent the entire day at the show and were both beaming when they finally got home Saturday night. Apparently it was very cool.

{all access = down on the floor}

tonehead turns twenty-eight.

Happy Birthday, Tone! No, her name is not really Tone. It's Sarah. Why Tone? Well, when we rushed Alpha Phi in college there were like six Sarah's in our pledge class. Sarah came to college with two-toned hair - black on the bottom and bleach blond on top. So, she was nicknamed "Sarah Two-Tone" which ultimately became Tone. It honestly feels really weird to call her Sarah. That's how official this name is.

Oh the memories and photos Tone and I share from college... Europe... and our early 20's... wow. Back to the days of caboodles, late nights on the second floor, country in the beast and back scratches - I can honestly say you've saved my life a few times with your ridiculously amazing back scratches. But thinking about it, I've saved yours - from the wrath of Colby and her lasso blow dryer.

Tone - you are fab girlfriend. You've found your true calling with Green Leaf Nutrition,  you're living the Southern California life you've always dreamed of and I'm so happy for you! Hope BK spoil you rotten today - let loose. Have an extra glass of birthday wine for me tonight. 

{a day at the del mar races}

{manhattan beach, california 2010}

{santa barbara, california - summer 2009}

{a night out in nyc - september 2006}

{game night with BK, colbs & jake}

 {out on the town in chicago in march 2009}

{we heart the hotel del coronado. an afternoon with the girls. memorial day 2007}

{tone's OC golden girls + 1 arizona lady}

for the love of reminiscing...
{spring break 2005. acapulco, mexico. nothing like a little sun poisoning... followed by a "shot off" with colbs. that led to another day of poisoning. oh, the memories!}

Monday, January 24, 2011


Thank goodness for dogs. When everyone else had exiled me to quarantine in the back bedroom this weekend, I could count on my little man for a cuddle. It's amazing how dogs truly make you feel better. I haven't been that miserable in a long time and Huntie was willing to stick it out with me (I'm feeling much better).

I got nervous about getting Hunter sick so I tried looking up the truth and myths about humans and dogs sharing germs. I didn't find anything solid but the pounding in my head only tolerated a minute of internet searching. I did see that dogs can be sneaky carrier of strep which they do pass to humans. Interesting.

{my lovely red nose. ouch}

it's a bug's birthday down under.

I can't believe Dyllan Grace is one today! I know I'm not alone when I say I'll never forget the day she was born... I'm sure a lot of my girlfriends are nodding in agreement right now.

Shmer was the one of our first friends to take the pregnancy plunge. It was so exciting and new to all of us and we couldn't wait to meet "The Fig" (her nickname because the first week Shmer signed up for the BabyCenter e-mails, they said the baby was the size of the Fig - both funny and fitting since their last name is Newton).

We were expecting the "we're in labor" text/call in late March so when it came through from Dan (Shmer's hubby) one morning in January - 9 weeks early - the emotions were mixed. We were excited, scared, nervous and wishing so badly we lived in Seattle to help and hug.

Us friends throughout the country stayed close via non-stop texts, picture messages and lots of the telephone game each time a new bit of info came in... it was an emotionally exhausting day but with a very happy ending. Shmer and Dan became proud parents to a little fighter - Baby Dyllan Grace - weighing in at just 3lbs 14oz. She was tiny but perfect.

Shmer & Dan - you guys are fabulous parents and the non-stop smiles on your baby girl shows you're doing it right. She's seriously such a beautiful baby, is full of personality and we're so proud to be Aunt Teri & Uncle Danny. Keep the photos, videos and updates coming of the new adventure Down Under!

Happy 1st Birthday, Dyllbug! 

{dyllan's 1st birthday party in australia... "bugs" themed}

{so teeny tiny... almost 5 pounds and just 6 weeks old}

{the first time we met} 

{she was obsessively checking her facebook page}

{bug in the pouch}

{just chillin with auntie colby}

{auntie jenny is sooo cool, mom} 

{auntie carlye, you're a natural at this}

For photos and videos from Dyllan's first year, check out the BabyFigNewton Blog!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

thinking of our little lady today.

Happy 4th Birthday Miss Sydney! We're all thinking about you today. In fact, Huntie has been playing lots with your yellow soccer ball this week and he's been sleeping in your old spot next in bed - right next to dad.

We can't tell you how much we miss your sassy ways around here. We've made good on our promise and talk about you every day which always makes us laugh... your complete lack of manners and how you'd "tank" over anyone and anything to get where you were going... the way you'd get all sassy and pillow fight on the bed... how you'd patiently wait for dad to finish his popsicle and then race over for the stick... your stink eye looks back at us from the end of the couch... and Christmas just wasn't the same without you attacking every roll of wrapping paper. You definitely added a lot of humor and drama in our lives and we sure do miss it!

In honor of your birthday, we'll go on an extra short walk tonight - we know those were your favorite.
Happy Birthday, Puss! 

{the pretty framed collage of you that grandma vicky made for mom, dad & huntie}

{our sick, skinny, only one ear up, 3lb baby girl on day one}

{it was love at first sight for all of us}

{best friends from day one}

{modeling grandma sandy's overalls}

{our silly little lady. one of dad's favorite photos}

{celebrating at dad's luau birthday pool party. you loved to socialize}

{posing for aunt jenny's photo shoot}

{i haaaatteee clothes. take it off. take it off.}

{sittin' pretty and sunning that tummy of yours. nice sports bra.}

{playing with her beloved yellow soccer ball on last year's birthday}

{her 3rd birthday photo. right after hunter popped her yellow ball - she's not happy}

{helping dad drive home from grandma & grandpa's in tucson}

{i love you brother}