Monday, November 29, 2010

Reaching the Big 3-0 Milestone

Tomorrow, November 30th, is my birthday. Tomorrow is when I enter into "my day of darkness" as I like to call it. Today is the last day of my twenties and tomorrow I enter into my scary age. I turn the big 3-0 tomorrow. Help me!!!

Turning 30 terrifies me and makes me just want to hide under the covers for the next few days!!!
My husband is eight years older than me and doesn't quite understand my apprehension of turning 30. He didn't even bat an eye when he turned 30 (I'm guessing) and keeps telling me it's not a big deal. But me? I'm scared of leaving my twenties and entering the next decade of my life. Turning 30 makes me feel depressed. But I don't really know how to explain why.

I wonder if it's because when I was younger I
set goals, accomplishments and deadlines for big things to happen in my life before I'm "old." Back then I thought 30 was old. And now when I look at the things I've done in my life, I know I haven't accomplished all I wanted. I'm not rich and successful living in a big house by the lake or ocean. I am married and have a wonderful family so I guess I score points on those goals! But I'm definitely not where I pictured I'd be by the time I hit this milestone birthday.

To start with I'm not exactly on the career path I envisioned. But that career path has changed so many times
that I don't know where I'm headed even now. (I used to want to be a teacher, than a lawyer because they made more money, then in college I thought I wanted to go into entertainment/ sports PR but that never worked out and somehow I ended up in casino marketing - I never would have thought that!)

Thirty is the grown up age; I should have m
y career figured out by now. Not be unsure of where my life is heading. Thirty is when you are supposed to have found yourself and are building your character, and I think part of finding yourself is being settled in a career. Luckily I have a job that I'm happy with and am most happy with my employer; it's just not what I envisioned for my life. But somehow it's working for me so maybe 30 is the age when I learn to embrace my career.

I haven't traveled as much as I had hoped I would. I always thought I'd be a jet-setter type of person who would take at least yearly vacations to see the United States and the world. Vacation in the Caribbean, see the Eiffel Towel and experience the beauty of Hawaii. And now, I've only seen most of what I have because of my jobs that have allowed me to travel to other states. I haven't been on an airplane in years, and haven't ever had the need to get a passport.

I also never thought I'd still be living in Minnesota. One of my goals was to get out of the state for at least a year. And here I am, still living in the freezing cold state I've only ever called home. This goal, however, will not leave my list - some year I will live in another state. Somewhere where the sun shines a little warmer in the winter months!

There are the good things in life; the goals I did meet. I'm married to a man who loves me more than I could ever have imagined. We have two cute, fun and furry "kids" that bring joy to my life; we have a great little family. And that is one of the best accomplishment I made in my twenties!

So what is it? What makes 30 so depressing
? Shows like Friends and Sex and the City showed 30 as being a great age - it's fun and exciting on TV. So maybe 30 won't be so bad. Maybe tomorrow I'll wake up with a big smile on my face and embrace this new decade. However, and this is way more likely, if you don't hear from me in the next couple of days, I'm probably still in bed hiding under the covers pretending the big 3-0 didn't happen. Can I just say I'm 29 for another year or so??

On a happy note, my husband organized a small get-together for my birthday yesterday and got me this super cute cake from a local bakery, The Queen of Cakes. The cake is not only cute, but tastes super delicious! It's a marble cake with strawberry mousse filling and buttercream and chocolate ganache frosting. Yum!!! At least I'll have th
e cake to make me feel better tomorrow!

"The secret of staying young is to live honestly, eat slowly, and lie about your age." - Lucile Ball



Saturday, November 6, 2010

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Another month has gone by without a blog post ... I really need to get more creative with my baking so I have things to post! My last few baking projects haven't been very pretty; tasty, but not pretty so they didn't make the cut for my blog. Also, I've been busy trying to decorate my place up and pretending winter isn't around the corner. Some days I would rather shop than bake!

Today, however, I decided it was time to bake, and time to try a new recipe. I've spent too much money lately so my bank account needs a day off. Plus, I needed to distract myself from what I deem the worst neighbor in our neighborhood. Of course I needed to pick the one house next to someone who must not be able to hear real well (at least I hope that's the excuse) since the music/ surround sound is always SUPER LOUD!! I just would like t
o point out that I live in a townhome. Our living rooms are not that big; I don't think surround sound is necessary for every TV show, every movie, every game, etc. So anyway, I needed to do something other than sit and try to watch my TV!

I tried a new recipe I found off of the Food Network website. I haven't baked too many things off this site, but these cookies sounded good so I thought I'd give them a try - Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies.
I had some leftover pumpkin puree from my pumpkin cake bites I made last week and wanted to use it up so I thought a pumpkin cookie sounded pretty good.

The recipe was easy to follow, but I wasn't a fan of the dough so I was a little worried about baking them up. I thought the dough needed to be sweeter, but I didn't want to add anything in case the taste differed as they baked. However, the cookies sm
elled delicious as they were baking so I kept positive about the taste!

After they cooled slightly I tasted my first cookie. I still was disappointed in the taste - they're not very sweet at all, and I don't think there's enough pumpkin flavor. I decided to drizzle some chocolate over the top to help sweeten them up, plus I never think there's enough chocolate in a cookie!

Overall I don't think it's a terrible recipe, just not exactly right. I see this recipe as a challenge. What can I do next time to improve the taste? Add some more brown sugar, more spices and definitely more pumpkin. I'll conquer this recipe yet!!

Here's the link if you want to try it out for yourself ... http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/george-duran/pumpkin-chocolate-chip-cookies-recipe/index.html

Now I have to go find something else to distract myself since I think the movie next door is getting louder. And for the rest of the day I'll have to keep repeating "I love living here; you can deal with it."