A Toast

In less than 48 hours from now, I'll be sitting in my first graduate school class.  I haven't been in a classroom {to take notes and learn} for more than 4 years, but why be so detailed?  Let's just say it's been a while.

I am anxious, but ready for this long, long road. Since I'm going to school part-time, it will take me about three and a half years to complete my 60-hour program, residency included. Somewhere in the midst of all of this, I'll be working a 40+ hour week, every week.

Pursuing this degree is important to me. 

And, yes, it's completely worth the effort.

So, let's raise a glass to being a poor University student again, eating egg salad sandwiches many nights for dinner, having cocktails with new classmates who are my new competition, and keeping my nose in the books.

Get ready for public blogosphere meltdowns;

the lack of quality writing, or posts at all;

and the idea that I might be a sane person.

But, the silver lining can't be overlooked.  At the end of all of this, I will be one step closer to undeniably improving the lives of those living in this country.



Weekend{s} Recap {So Far}!

Here's what has happened over the last three weekends, folks.

{Flashback to Two Weeks Ago} With the threat of rain, we decided to stay in on Friday evening.  I was caught in a monsoon walking home from work a few weeks back, and I swore I wouldn't do it again.  After waiting an extra half hour for Husband to weave his way through the rush hour traffic, I read my book {Catching Fire, which I was desperately trying to get though in the shortest possible time,} until he was able to pick me up.  We watched 6+ hours of DVRed Olympics coverage like the champs we are. That is, until the rain began pouring...inside.

It seems our newly converted town home has a torrid past.  The staircase was dripping water during the storm,  and didn't stop for an hour. We quickly called our landlord, only to leave a message. We were contacted on Tuesday afternoon about it, saying he was sending someone to look at it before the next storm. The story is yet to be continued, but I hope we'll stay dry for a little while.

Last weekend we were the errand team. Through laundry, picking up the house, buying groceries and planning out our week, we were able to see The Bourne Legacy at the AMC in the Waterfront. It's certainly my favorite larger movie theatre in the area {the best smaller theater being the Manor Theatre in Squirrel Hill}.  The movie itself was very much like the other Bourne movies, shaky cam and all.  Husband did a marathon of the currently out Bourne movies before this, so he was all on a Robert Ludlum high. I think I know what his next birthday present will be!

This weekend has started out much the same, but with a pre-vacation manicure/pedicure tucked in. How is your weekend going? Are you an errander, too?
I am planning to write a review of the other restaurant we visited for Pittsburgh Restaurant Week last week.  Look out for that one!

As it draws closer, we're getting more and more excited about going to NYC for our anniversary. We'll only be there for a short time, but we've got so much planned! We're leaving very early on Friday of this coming week. It's coming up!

I'm starting my graduate school classes this week. Eeek! I'm excited to get back into being a student, but it'll be a much more different journey because I'm also a working professional this time around. More on this soon.

Have a fantastic rest of your weekend!


Part Two: Weekender Bag

I need to sing Husband's praises - He actually read my blog post about weekender bags, then suggested we go shopping for one after work today!  What a surprise!


{Travel} The Weekender Bag

As Husband and I are starting to collect our wits about us for our upcoming trip to NYC, I've come to realize that I have a luggage dilemma.
Here's the thing: This trip will be for less than a week {surrounding a weekend}, and we're likely going to be doing a lot of walking. These two factors equal a situation where I don't have a ton of items I plan on bringing {this never happens} other than a few outfits, good walking shoes, and maybe a pair of wedges.  Most of my luggage is semi-soft sided, and rolls on wheels. 
It may just be a fascination with the actual piece of zippered perfection, but I'm in need of a Weekender Bag.


{PRW} Blogger Dinner at The Porch at Schenley

For Pittsburgh's second Restaurant Week, bloggers from the area were invited to have dinner at The Porch at Schenley.  I'd been to The Porch before on a bright summer day, back when my best friend was visiting from Texas.  During that visit, we'd just walked around the University of Pittsburgh campus when we stepped into The Porch for late afternoon meal. 
 We ordered the farm bread, served with homemade strawberry jam, apple butter and honey butter.  Starting off a meal like this is perfection to me. Have I told you how much I love bread?


Pittsburgh Restaurant Week: Summertime Edition!

Last night at my spin class, I reminded my classmates that this week is Pittsburgh's summertime Restaurant Week.  I looked around, and saw blank faces.  Evidently, not everyone knows this is the week of fabulous restaurants around town featuring a special menu for a great price!
This is Pittsburgh's second Restaurant Week for the year {and ever!}, and I've had the chance to go to a Blogger Dinner on Tuesday night at The Porch at Schenley {post forthcoming}, and have other dinner plans for later this week.

The list of restaurants goes on and on, and there is a selection of two types of 'special deals': 1.} Select the prix fixe menu of three courses for usually around $20-$40; or 2.} Select the $20.12 special menu, and get a meal for that price. Of course, you can always order from the regular menu, but why pass up the specials? This week only comes twice a year!

What are your plans for Pittsburgh Restaurant Week?  Where have you already eaten?


PGH Dining: Taiwan Cafe

I had a lunch meeting recently in Oakland at Taiwan Cafe, an 'underground' restaurant that serves so many delicious dishes.  By 'underground' I mean that you literally take a flight of stairs down off the main street. 
We sat down in one of the many open seating options {booths, tables, bar} after ordering our lot.  My colleague ordered the eggplant with basil, a steaming dish with a thick, gooey sauce. 


{Recipe} Lemon-Lime Tea Cakes

This weekend we ended up with far too many lemons in our fruit bowl.  What to do?  Make Lemon-Lime Tea Cakes!
{Lemon-Lime Tea Cakes}
via Everyday Food Light by Martha Stewart Living


PGH Dining: Taste of India

Typically, I bring my lunch to work. This allows me to pack healthy options, not over-indulge, and feel energized for the second half of my work day. A few Mondays ago I forgot my lunch {sitting on the counter, no less}, and had to haul my cookies to the cafeteria in the hospital for lunch. This isn't a bad thing - you hear 'hospital food' and cringe. However, this hospital offers under-500 calorie dishes and a fresh sushi bar. I was planning to opt for a spicy tuna roll when I was informed the credit card machines were down. Hence the unplanned-ness of the event, I didn't have any cash on me, save 35 cents in change. For shame! On to the next.
Within walking distance is Taste of India, which sounded like a comforting option to me.  The spicier the better in my book!  Since I had an hour to eat, I chose the lunch buffet.  For under $10, you can have your choice of curries, vegetarian dishes, rices, other grains, accompaniments, naan, desserts and fruit.


New Glasses

So, I got new glasses. 
What do you guys think? Yay or Nay?
{Remember now, I've committed to these suckers for a year. So be nice.}

PGH Dining: Wai Wai

Going out to lunch is a way of life in Dallas. You and your best coworkers blow off steam and talk about the pains of a particularly trying project you're all involved in over a plate of hot food. It's almost a ritual.
Here in Pittsburgh, both Husband and I have noticed that people don't usually do that. People bring their lunches, eat at their desks or grab something quickly while doing an errand. 
I didn't realize how much I'd miss it!
Thus, I started a Lunch Bunch with a group of coworkers in my building, for a once-a-month dining trip to a restaurant close by. This past month's inaugural trip was to Wai Wai in Bloomfield.


Good Luck, USA!

Tonight {our time}, two of our brightest on Team USA, Gabby Douglas and Aly Raisman will compete in the All-Around for Women's Gymnastics.  I'm desperately avoiding spoilers from the national news teams, Twitter, and Facebook.
via blog.zap2it.com
via Biography.com
Good luck, girls!