Saturday, December 26, 2009

We're off!


Tomorrow morning, (3:30am to be exact), Jeremy and I leave for our cruise. We will be going to the Southern Caribbean. Or maybe Northern. I'm not really sure. We leave from San Juan, that I know for sure.

In answer to your questions:

Yes, we will be the youngest people by 20 years on this cruise.

Yes, we likely will meet another nice couple on the ship, exchange numbers, and hope to keep in contact. They will have never heard of Facebook.

Yes, the aforementioned couple will likely be in their mid 70's and have strange physical ailments.

Yes Grandma, I will stay away from the water. On the cruise ship.

Yes, I will wear sunscreen. And no, I will never again mix sun screen with bug spray.

Yes, we likely will buy some strange piece of art from the art auction that we just, 'had to have', and then bring it home to find that it is totally bizarre.

Yes, we will be gone for New Years. We will be spending it with our new geriatric friends. Sipping Metamucil at the stroke of Midnight.

No, I will not be surprised if Jeremy requires that both of us wear life jackets the entire time on board. Even on the formal night.


We'll be back next Sunday. Rested. With many more freckles. And with our new 70 year old friends.

And when I return...just wait for the blog entitled, "This is what Jews do on Christmas". It's going to be great!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Weekend Recap

It all started on Thursday night. We were getting our gift ready for the Petsmart staff. Yes, we give a gift to the Petsmart staff. They are so good to our little pup. How could we not? So I wrote a card expressing our emotions and affixed it to the gift:

In case you can't read it, it says: "Thank you for taking such good care of me when I come to play. I'm sorry I sometimes eat my poopy."

Friday evening. I picked the dog up from Daycamp, I picked Jeremy up from work and we drove home. We walk in, and Jeremy presses the up button for the elevator. I do what I normally do which is wander, and look around. I was looking at the bulletin board in the elevator lobby and notice a sign:

Kara: "Uh, Jeremy...Jeremy..."
Jeremy: "Yes"
Kara: "It seems there's an open house in unit 706 on Sunday. WE LIVE IN UNIT 706"
Jeremy: "No, way....uhhhhh"
Kara and Jeremy: "OMG..Hhahahahha"

surprise open house. It was something we had discussed with our agent a long while ago, but just in mulling over ideas, I didn't realize he had followed through with it. So there it was. We were to spend the rest of our weekend cleaning. Well not really the whole weekend, but ya know, a while. Surprise...you're having an open house!

Just think if I hadn't wandered around and looked at the bulletin board.

Sunday - we had to flee our house due to the surprise open house. We drove around, wandered. Dog played at Grandma and Grandpa's with Mocha and Teddy. We're going to need to come up with some activities to fill our time when we have to flee our house. Please comment if you have some ideas.

We returned home and in the spirit of Christmas I had to bake Christmas cookies.


I just had to do it. It was the spirited thing to do. My office is enjoying them today.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Wassup


This photo has no relevance to the blog - I just thought I'd post an old, cute picture of Punky.

I really have nothing interesting to say today. So you can just stop reading now if you want. But I'd rather you read my ramblings for a minute. You're probably sitting at your desk with Facebook as your other open screen doing absolutely nothing anyways. So read.

Thank you all for your concern. And for those of you who read that I had surgery and ignored it - you suck. just kidding. but you suck a little bit. But I am feeling much better now. Friday - Monday were rough. Yesterday I was back to the gym - which made me quite happy. The only thing I can't quite do yet is lay on my stomach. But that seems quite avoidable.

I'm getting pretty sick of being asked if my Christmas shopping is done. I know they mean it in good spirit. But I'm sick of it. No, I don't still have Christmas dinner even though I'm Jewish. No, I do not have a tree even though it has no 'religious' ties. No, I don't have long lists of people to buy gifts for. No, my niece will not be sitting in a creepy, old, hairy man's lap. And no, it really does not make me sad that I don't do those things. Because, in case you missed the memo, I'm Jewish.

Had dinner with some friends last night and we tried a new restaurant - Northeast Social Club. Sounded fun and different. Food was good but not worth the price. Atmosphere was nice, but loud. Guitar player was fairly unnecessary. Worth a try, but I don't think I'll be rushing back.

Okay - that's all for this Thursday. I just noticed that this post was laced with some serious cynicism. My apologies.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Overshare

So this blog is going to rise to a new level of personal today....

This past Friday I had a little surgery at Abbott Hospital. No big deal, I'm fine. Though for most of the weekend I was subjected to pain medications and sleeping off the anesthetic. Saturday morning arrives and I was sleeping with my phone beside me.

The phone rings,
Caller: "Hi, this is Sue calling from Abbott Northwestern Hospital"
Kara: "Oh, hi"
Caller: Blah, Blah, Blah...A whole bunch of words I thought I understood but clearly I did not
Kara: "Well, I had to pee 4 times last night. Can you believe it 4 times, and that is SO not like me. My poor husband. He had to help me to the bathroom each time!"
Caller: "Uh, I'm sorry to hear that Ms. Frank. But I was just calling to do a care survey. Do you think you could rate your care during your stay at the hospital? I apologize about the peeing problem."
Kara: "Survey?! Uh, oh. Survey. Yea, great, they were great."

Guess she didn't care about my peeing problem. And I guess she wasn't calling to check in on how I was feeling either! Whoops. Blame it on the medications.

I left my phone on the nightstand for the rest of the day. Best not to answer it anymore after that one.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Let it snow


Uh team, it looks like it has snowed a bit. In case you didn't notice.

My general philosophy is that if Blake is closed, I don't go to work. Blake is not closed today. Therefore I am at work today.

The snow it is pretty
this time of year there is no pity
We romp and play
And enjoy the day

January will soon come
We will begin to hibernate on our bum
Sweatshirts showing signs of wear
Boots begin to tear

February rolls around
Snow still abound
Every sentence seems to end with Bulls*&%
And puts us in quite a fit

Soon March will arrive
Moods they do collide
My bags are packed, I'm on my way
Minnesota I cannot stay

April brings a glimmer of hope
We try our best to cope
They say that spring brings flowers
Screw that, I'm hiding in a warm shower

I often sit and wonder why
My ancestors traveled here and stayed by
Hadn't we suffered enough
I'm sick of this BS about being tough

Monday, December 7, 2009

The Craft Fair

A few weeks ago a sign appeared in our very community oriented condo building. This sign advertised a "Craft Fair" that was to be held in our building. Initially I thought this would entail outsiders, coming in to sell their wares to the residents of the Groveland. However, after reading, I realized that the intention was for residents to craft and sell their own goods.

Interesting.

Debra, our Groveland co-dweller noticed this sign herself on a walk through the building one day. Debra however decided, this would be fun. "I will sign up. Oh, and I'll sign Kara up too."

As time passed I assumed the craft fair would be cancelled due to lack of interest and we would never have to actually make said craft to sell. I also assumed that a cause would emerge in which this craft fair would benefit. That did not occur either. One week out from the date of the fair, Jeremy and I looked at each other and realized that we had not yet gotten ourselves out of this event. And furthermore, our condo is for sale, and some good PR to the other residents couldn't hurt.

So craft we did. We decided to make 'chocolate chip cookie mix in a jar'. You know, like layers of flour, sugar, chocolate chips etc... We tied them up with an ornament and a bow. Attached a gift tag with preparation instructions. We felt pretty darn proud of our craft. Debra made, "Marlene's nuts". Marlene is my brother in law's mother, who happens to make some delish nuts.

Our crafts were prepared and we were feeling pretty confident we would knock the socks off this craft fair.

Debra arrived earlier than we did, to the community room at our building and set up. Soon, I received a panicked phone call.

"Kara, it's Debra. There is a situation down here. Our crafts, are a little embarrassing. Kara, these people are crafting professionals"

"Debra, calm down, hide in a corner, I'll be there soon"

I arrive, and to my utter embarrassment I find water color paintings just a step down from Monet. I find acrylic paintings like you would see at the Uptown Art Fair. Wine Charms that might as well have been sold at Patina. Hand stitched dish towels.



I keep walking and in the corner, I find Debra, sitting there, with a sign stating: Nuts $2



Needless to say, our crafts didn't quite measure up. Jeremy and I could not attend the whole craft show due to a Bar Mitzvah we had to attend. However, Debra kindly babysat our craft while we were gone. To our amazement when we returned, she had almost sold out of her nuts, while our cookie mix sat lonely, all initial 12 soldiers, still in place.

Now I think she pushed Marlene's nuts over our cookies, but nonetheless, we had not yet sold a single one. About 15 minutes before the end of the 5 hour craft fair the woman at the booth next to us bought one of my jars, likely out of pity.

But sold we did! $46 we brought in from the craft fair total. Our cookies contributed 5 of those dollars.

I think we'll keep our day jobs. No more craft fairs for us. Clearly real estate is a better option for me.

Friday, December 4, 2009

My many neurosis



Someone please call our realtor and request a showing of our condo and don't tell me. Please. I have been checking my email incessantly waiting for him to write saying someone wants to see it, and so far, no such luck. So, if you're a good friend, you'll see it, I'll never know the difference and maybe, just maybe, you'll also buy it. That would be great, thanks.

And in the meantime, if you would like baked goods, put in your order. My unwarranted, and unnecessary stress is causing me to bake and give it away. Some people drink when they're stressed, some people eat when they're stressed, I bake and give them goods away when I'm stressed. Just as long as I give it away and don't eat it, I figure it's fine.

My coworkers will just get fat.

Oh...in other news, we went to the Holidazzle last night and sat in the heated 'Hot Seats'. Best $9 we ever spent. I highly recommend this experience, while one's bum is being heated. While one's bum is being frozen outside? Not so much.

The holidays have officially begun at work, and generous, but also very goysha gifts have started to arrive. I have already received a poinsettia, and a ham. Was the giant nose not a giveaway? Eh, the poinsettia went to a coworker, and the ham is going to the adopt-a-family. But if you guys want to drop off some Latkes, well then I would be intrigued.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

For Sale!

It's official - our condo is for sale! And if you know of anyone looking, please pass this on! We have (and still do) absolutely loved our place, but it's time to move on, get more space, remove wedding gifts from my parents house, and live in a big girl house.

http://www.davidabele.com/address.php?property_ID=118

And in answer to your next question, no we are not having a baby anytime soon.

The plan of the day is to sell our place, move into somewhere temporarily while we buy, plan and renovate a house. Gluttons for punishment? Likely. Excited? Absolutely.

It will be a nerve wracking process, but we're just trying to be calm and patient, two things that one would not typically associate with me. But I'm trying. (Keep in mind our house has officially been on the market for 2 hours and I am sitting here wondering if anyone has requested a showing yet). Calm and patient, Kara, try to be calm and patient.

Please, please, if you know anyone looking for a fantastic place in the best building in the city - send them our way. We can't say enough good things about our condo. It's just that Punky wants a little puppy brother!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Pardon the cynicism

Thanksgiving was lovely. Nothing terribly momentous. And please pardon my Monday morning cynicism, but see below.

This photo is the reason why Jews don't celebrate Christmas. That and the fact that we could never figure out how to affix a tree to the top of our cars without it falling off onto the highway.

We just wouldn't wear Elf hats to the mall. We wouldn't. And I'm trying not to criticize, I'm just saying that it would be a cold day in you know where when Beth Weinblatt walked into Ridgedale sporting an Elf hat. And I really don't limit this just to my family. I just don't see it happening.
(please note that I followed these people 2/3 of the way around Ridgedale alone, creepily stalking them with my iphone trying to get a picture)

Cynicism #2. On Thursday night, Thanksgiving evening, Nicollet Mall ('main drag' in downtown Minneapolis that is closed to vehicles, just buses and pedestrians) was open for driving. Cars were allowed to drive down the Mall just for the night to view the holiday lights downtown. I love lights, and so Jeremy and I drove there to see the displays! We expected to be wowed and amazed as we sat in the line of cars waiting to do what is normally illegal. How rebellious we were, waiting to drive down and see what we could see. Finally, we got to Nicollet, turned, and saw nothing. We figured the display started farther down the street, as we were at the end, Nicollet and Washington Ave.

We drove, slowly, and drove, even slower. My head was angled to look ahead, to see the big displays. And this is what I see.


Even Jay Weinblatt could put up a better display than that. For real? We drove down the entire mall, and this was the most "Awesome" display we saw. Thank you city of Minneapolis, that was quite a treat.

After this little rendezvous I tried to get Jeremy to go to WalMart as they were open 24 hours. We protested, as we all know, he is a loyal Target employee and that would be treason. Not that I like Walmart, but I did want to get a glimpse of the crazies, waiting for their $20 TV's or whatever. C'est La Vie. We drove around Lake of the Isles, saw some genuinely cool lights. And went home, to sleep off the turkey.

Hope you all had a great weekend!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

To give thanks

With Thanksgiving upon us I thought I'd reflect on some ways in which I am thankful:

1. Thankful that my dog's poo eating has decreased slightly.

2. I am thankful for my husband. Who has never eaten his own poo. That I know of.

3. I am thankful that I am employed. And that I actually really like my job. Very, very thankful.

4. I am thankful for fleece. Because of its many amazing qualities.

5. I am thankful for candycorn. Althrough I cannot be trusted with it and therefore limit myself to 1 day per year of candycorn consumption. That day has passed. I now have moved on and look back fondly and reverently.

6. I am thankful for Amie, my assistant at work. If there were work gold star charts, hers would be filled.

7. I am thankful for my mom who doesn't seem to mind my incessent calling. Or if she does, she does a damn good job of hiding it.

8. I am thankful for Costco. Because it is just such a darn fun store. And I love it when they sample the franks in a blanket. Because they are both deliscious and hilarious. Thank you Costco for providing many hours of entertainment.

9. I am thankful that I got the swine flu shot (no, I am not preggo - but technically I have exercise enduced asthma.)

10. I am thankful and slightly nostalgic for our condo building, The Groveland, for providing me with consistant blogworthy material like the following:

I know you probably cannot read this, but it says,
"The Groveland Board of Directors has agreed that Holiday Wreaths will be allowed on unit doors this Holiday season..."

It then goes on to explain that no other decorations on our decks or elsewhere are allowed. Jeremy and I will hide our menorah in our bathroom so nobody sees it through the window, thus breaking association rules.

Thank you comunist Russia. Also known as the Groveland.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Holiday Spirit

Typically, within commercial office buildings, we deliver holiday gifts around this time of year. At one of my buildings, I decided to do a few, smaller get togethers rather than spend the money on candy for each office.

In this one building I decided to do a holiday cookie party. I called the bakery, asked if they could do something, "Festive". I said, "Think pumpkins, and cornicopias, and turkeys". They replied, "We can do pilgrims and Indians". I quickly responded, perfect. I hung up and thought to myself, "Are Pilgrims and Indians still politically correct?" But I put it out of my mind, as I was looking forward to the festive cookie gathering.

Friday afternoon arrives, and the cookie delivery man drops of the trays of cookies. I bring them down into the common kitchen area and set everything out. 3:00 rolls around and the first of the tenants arrives. Several ladies from one of the businesses come down, look at the cookies, start whispering to one another and giggling.

What are they laughing at? This is akward. Is my fly unzipped? Do I have a booger?

One of the ladies walks over to me and says, "Kara, your cookies are naked except for a loin cloth".

Please see photograpic evidence below:


Oh that's right. So not only did I have mildly offensive cookies with Indians wearing feathers on their heads, but they were also X rated.

Way to go Kara. Guess next time I'll be more specific and ask for pumpkin and leaf cookies.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Changes

Changes abound! And if you know me, you know I hate change. But I'm working on it. This change is regarding our home. It looks like our condo will be up for sale very soon. And we may just be homeless! So...if anyone has a suggestion on where we could live for like 9-11 months, please let me know. Otherwise we will be squatting in my commercial office vacancies. And something tells me my boss won't like that.

Things I don't find funny:
1. The aforementioned ... change
2. When someone comes in and sticks another day right in the middle of the week. Because I'm pretty sure that's what happened this week. And I don't find it funny. Friday is far enough away that we don't need phantom days thrown in there.
3. Flat tire in my brand new tires. Which turns out to be not just a nail, but a nail AND a giant staple. Only me.


None of those things are funny. Particularly the extra day. I'm serious, this week will never end.

On a good note, I am sitting in my office waiting for Stacy to arrive because she is bringing me a present to work. Everyone needs a Stacy. And I'm not sharing her. Find your own!

On another side note, Stacy also offered to build a room for Jer and I above their garage. I found this funny because a. they would BUILD a room! themselves! amazing.
b. they live in Ham Lake. So thoughtful, but Ham Lake, really? Stacy likes to remind me that it's only 24 miles to Downtown. I like to remind her that 24 is a lot of miles. And she lives in a city with the word Ham in it's name. Something tells me no Jew has ever lived there. Maybe we should change the name of Saint Louis Park to more accurately reflect the populous, like Ham Lake....

Brisketville
Matzoh Lake
Guiltapolis
Latke Hills

Brilliant idea Kara. Can you tell that the nervousness over change has caused me to lose significant amounts of sleep this week?

If you know anyone looking for an awesome condo in Minneapolis - let me know! And if you know somewhere that we can live if we ever manage to sell the aforementioned condo, that would be helpful too.

Monday, November 16, 2009

more house hunting

This weekend continued the search for a house! This process has moved a bit quicker than we anticipated, but it appears that we should take advantage of, pardon my language, this craptastic market. So....we are on the hunt for a house to gut and renovate! This search brought us through Saint Louis Park and Golden Valley.

Now, keep in mind we do not care about size, condition, color, materials, aesthetic, none of it. We care about the location, the lot, and the footprint. Though, if there are other items within the home we can use, so much the better. However, this one was just a bit more than we could take....

Situated in Saint Louis Park, on a fairly nice street, near the lakes and highway 100, I thought this home would have great potential. Until we stepped out of the car.

We walked up the rickety old steps, and then decided we had to go up one at a time for fear of them collapsing (and we are not large people). We walk up the front door and realize that it is disguised. They have the front door covered with paneling so it looks like it is part of the house, and you can't find it. Strange.

We open the door and walk in. The floors are tilting so much that you have to bend your knees for stability while walking through the home. It looks like it has been ransacked, and clearly is vacant until we read a sign on a door:
"Please be quiet, my renter, Lylette is sleeping in this room while recovering from a medical procedure. If you choose to go in this room, please be sensitive of her condition and do not look at her."

FOR REAL? No way. A. There is a woman living in this dump? and B. Yuck.

For reasons which are still unclear, we continue to walk through the home. We enter the bathroom and find the following:


Yes, that would be a gigantic hold in the ceiling. We proceed to the kitchen and find those holes, like Swiss cheese, dotting the ceiling. We then see another lovely note from the homeowner:
"You may notice that we have had a bit of a water problem. We have had the problem fixed and wanted to wait a year before repairing the holes to make sure it didn't happen again."

Just a thought, but maybe then you shouldn't list your home for sale!!!! for $300,000!!! A few holes? This thing looked like the moon. The agent, the developer and Jeremy proceeded to the basement, where I am sure they have rented out the space to film horror movies. I went back to the front door, put my shoes back on and stood there. Fearing a poltergeist was going to jump out of the walls at me. Or maybe that was just Lylette, the infirmed renter.

Blech.

The search continues.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

New Hobby...

First let me apologize for my lack of blogging lately. I was having a bit of an inspiration lapse, but we may have just found a new outlet for fresh material. Details to follow below.

Background:
We got married. Now we have nothing to do. We have a condo, so we don't have 'yard work' like every other person in the world. We don't have kids. We don't have home repair. We are bored. So, I decided to find a hobby. I researched community education classes. Timing hasn't worked out yet. I looked into volunteering, turns out there are waiting lists for all the things I've found so far! I joined committees. And then, we started looking for a house. As a pastime of course. Just a hobby. Just a free activity on the weekends. And let me tell you, this girl is picky. To date, we have probably toured over 50 homes, and I have not found even one that I would like to look at a second time. Yes, I am that picky. But it has served its purpose as a new hobby.

This past weekend Jeremy and I were driving through the South side of Saint Louis Park looking for open houses. We pull up to a house, play the guess the price game, and then enter. We have the sales agent personalities down pat:
**The young eager go getter waiting for their first sale
**The disgruntled older agent who has sold homes for 95 years and has personally "built this town"
**The middle aged professional who is just too busy to even talk to you while you walk through their home
**The agent who thoroughly believes the home they are holding open is both disgusting, overpriced and not suitable for sale. And will tell you as much.

But this weekend, we drove, and continued to drive South. Soon, Jeremy turns to me and says, "Uh, oh, I don't think we're in Saint Louis Park anymore". I respond: "We're not in Kansas anymore Toto, it looks like we're in ....EDINA".

The streets were a little wider. The grass was a little greener. The birds were chirping. The sun shone a bit brighter. Children romped and played on hand cut grass, and Muffy walked down the street with her fur coat, out for a stroll.

I turn to Jeremy and state, "We MUST walk through one of these open houses". Jeremy looks at me, and without a word, turns down yes, and I could not make this up, 'Country Club Drive', and we pull up to a home listed by none other than Sotheby's.

We walk up the steps, enter the home. I take off my left shoe and proclaim, "uh, oh, these floors are heated". Sign we should have walked right out: Heated tile floors. But we took our shoes off and entered the castle, I mean home. We walk in, without so much as a glance from the agent. We walk upstairs, and into the first bedroom. On the floor lay a rug, emblazoned across this rug was a giant "B". Above the bed was written the name BEN in wooden letters. Across the bedspread was a monogram of a B for Ben.

Okay, apparently this kid likes his name.

Enter bedroom #2. Rug on the floor with a giant F, wooden letters above the bed spelling out Finnegan, monogram ed bed spread with an F. This is Finnegan's room. In case you couldn't tell.

Bedroom #3. Sam on the rug, wall and bed.

Bedroom #4: the parents room. Gigantic monogram on the bed, dog bed on the floor which matched the bed linens, and I am not kidding hundreds of family photos covering every square inch of wall. And every single one in black and white.

We're not in Kansas anymore.

We quickly walked down the stairs, feeling like we were somewhere we shouldn't be. Ran into the kitchen, expecting to exchange the typical awkward greetings with the listing agent. However, she stood there, continued to talk to the neighbors about, "What a sweet little idea to hold an open house. Nobody ever does that to sell their home" and we continue to wander undisturbed. Eventually, I felt a bit too awkward and we dashed out the front door, like we were leaving somewhere we never should have been in the first place.

Goodbye Finnegan. Goodbye Sam. Goodbye Ben. Goodbye family with a matching dog bed.

If you are looking for some good entertainment this weekend, I highly suggest you join us on an outing of our new hobby. Tour a house with us, though we likely will not be going back to Edina. Sorry.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

What is wrong with this picture?

And Why is America Fat? I will tell you why in one simple text message:

Stacy: Kara, I just went to Rainbow and bought a 10lb ham and got a 10lb turkey, a dozen eggs, and 1 pound of sausage links for free!

Now I'm just going to take a stab at this one, and Erica, if you're reading this, you can correct me, but I don't think that really happens in Europe.

I can picture it, "monsieur your largest turkey please" And don't forget, I need a ham, eggs and sausage free.

One bypass, coming right up!

And not to pick on Stacy, because clearly, my reaction was, "I need to go over there and get that for myself!" But then I remembered I do not eat ham. Or Sausage. Nor would I have a clue what to do with an entire Turkey. The eggs I would use though.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Happy Halloween

Hope you are all geared up and ready for this weekend's Halloween festivities. The Frank Family is all set, costumes are purchased, candy is ready, pumpkin is waiting.
Except that we don't dress up...but the dog does!

This year she begged and pleaded to be a French Maid, rather than a hot dog like last year.

And except that we live in a condo building so there will be no cute children coming to our door dressed up in costume to hand out said candy. So Jeremy will be consuming it all.

And except that again, we live in a condo building, so our pumpkin is sitting on our kitchen table, rather than on the outside stoop.

So it's a modified Halloween. With dog costumes, and pumpkin clad kitchen tables, and a husband stuffed full of candy intended for children.

Someday we'll have a house, and you know this girl will have that thing decorated to the hilt with cobwebs, and spiders, and pumpkins galore! And knowing me, I will craft some type of door decoration that will necessitate 3 trips to Michael's, 2 trips to Target and a last minute Jo Ann Fabrics run, just to make the perfect Halloween door decor. But until that time, our condo is ready for the holiday!

In health news. My husband has gone crazy. And I mean that in the kindest way. Yesterday for lunch he visited his favorite outpost known as Chipotle. Upon finishing his burrito bowl the employee sneezed near the bowl. Jeremy paid, walked out the door, and then threw away his uneaten lunch. Afraid the sneezing culprit had H1N1 and may have gotten his sneezing germs on the lunch.

Now I don't disagree with this philosophy, but I do disagree with the financial implications. He paid for the lunch! Return it. Make a stink. Inform them that there is this funny thing called the swine flu going around and you are not interested in catching it from your lunch. But pay for it? I don't think so. Oh, well.

Instead he enjoyed a delicious lean pocket. And that is the most embarrassingly delicious thing that the Franks have now learned to enjoy for lunch. Just 5 WW points, of pure delight. No joke, try the lean pocket. And tell em we sent you.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

How we pack...

Several years ago I got into an argument before traveling with some girlfriends. They wanted to carry on their luggage. I believe in checking luggage. I firmly believe that checking luggage is a service that is provided for you (and this is before they started to charge).

Why would I, schlep my luggage through the airport, rush to the beginning of the boarding line to ensure I was on first, to reserve space in the shoebox of an overhead compartment, hoist the bag over my head into an already jam packed bread box, and then risk life and limb to take my bag out again after the plane has landed and items have clearly shifted during the turbulent flight, and then drag it into the restroom because I hate airplane bathrooms and clearly have to pee upon exiting the plane.

So not worth it.

So I believe in checking my luggage. I also believe that I can pack as much as I want, as long as I can carry it unassisted.

Luckily, I have married a man who feels the same. In fact, on a recent trip to New York, we felt the need to pack the following:

Those were our shoes for the trip. Yep, that's how many shoes we brought for a Friday afternoon-Monday morning trip to NYC! In our defense, we had a wedding to attend with several events, and many outfit changes.

And on a recent weekend trip, okay just a Saturday night trip, to a B&B in Stillwater, we filled our trunk with the following:


We could carry it all, therefore it is acceptable. Which leads me to our concept for a dating show. Give a man and a woman a location. Send them home to pack for a trip for an allotted period of time to the specified location. Ask them to return an hour later. Based on the amount, and items they packed, their compatibility is determined.

*Light packers, who travel in backpacks
*Those with tailored suitcases and garment bags neatly and tightly packed together
*Duffel bag types with ID stickers from around the world matched up
*People who pack in granny's flowered suitcase, the old style with wheels on the narrow bottom and a strap to pull, busting at the seams and smelling of mothballs
*People like us who pack in matching suitcases, clothing pressed and folded inside, and with 4 outfits per day, which have a suitcase scale in their bag to ensure they are not over the weight limit.

Therein lies the key to our millions. Travel Companions. Maybe that's what we'll call our dating show. It's a brilliant idea. I swear. It's brilliant.

And if you're looking for a place to travel in your backpack/granny case/Tumi garment bag...one of Debra's friends, Greta just discovered an awesome site. I cannot personally attest, but we hope to use it in the very near future:

Luxurylink.com

She just used it for a recent trip and had a great experience and got a great deal!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Photographic journey

Today's post will be a photographic journey...fasten your safety belts, we're goin' for a ride.

Subject #1 was spotted on a recent apple picking adventure with friends. I am a firm believer in road-side stands/stores. Therefore, when a country store beckoned from the side of the street in Jordan Minnesota, we just had to take a gander. Inside we found many amazing 'treasures' including every key chain you could ever imagine with names on them, but sadly, as always, none said 'Kara'.

And then...from a distance, I see Rachel Rosen beckoning me to come closer. As if in slow motion I pick up each foot and put one in front of another bounding my way towards her to see what she has found. And what has she found? None other than the plate seen below:

If you cannot read it, it says: "Life is good, oy the little things". Now there are many things wrong with this photo, but the first of which being the most obvious.
A. We are in a country bumpkins store in Jordan Minnesota
B. The phrase really makes no sense
C. This plate utilizes the Jewish slang word, 'oy'.
D. I do not know a single Jewish person who would buy this particular plate. While it does feature the color turquoise, which is very popular among Jewish families, its the uneven nature of the pottery and the lack of dishwasher-safe pottery that screams non-jew. And yet, emblazoned across this plate is the word, oy.
E. Oy, what an ugly plate.


Our next subject is a pair of pajamas I found hanging at Target. Now here, I must be slightly less critical because it is very possible Steph and I will be purchasing these for our Halloween costumes.

Subject #2 is a rack full of adult sized footie pajamas with sock monkeys on the feet displayed at Target right now.

I may or may not have picked up a pair to wear to my sister's rehearsal dinner this weekend. Guess you'll just have to wait and see.


Subject #3 is something I find far less humorous than the general public. On a recent visit to Twin Cities Best Yogurt (TCBY) I gleefully ordered my ice cream.

1 pumpkin fro yo with gummy bears on top.

He handed it to me, and before Jeremy could pay, I was eating it!

I then glanced to my right to see Jeremy and Alex looking on with disgust. "Oh, sorry, I guess I should have waited". "uh no, we were more grossed out by your choice of ice cream and topping selection."

Whatever, its delish. Gummy bears are perfect with all things in my book.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Twas the week before the wedding...

My sister's that is! So most of you remember the drama of the Weinblatt sister's wedding's in one year. Well here is #2. Robyn Alison Weinblatt is getting married on Sunday! We arrived home from NYC for a friend's wedding this morning around 11am. We left our hotel in New York at 4:30am MN time and here I am, 4:15pm MN time. And did I mention the wedding was last night so we slept for about 4 hours, and then both went to work. Now that little intro wasn't even literate. Whatevs. So in the spirit of my lack of brain cells at this moment....

An Ode to my sister in her wedding week....

Here we are, just one week away
It's getting harder to keep our mom's phone calls at bay
Flowers are ordered
Linens are pressed
Dress is fitted
And we're ready for the rest

Soon visitors will start to arrive
No turning back, no returning to the hive
Bridesmaids are excited
Groomsmen hair is righted

To the Sofitel we go
ho ho ho (I couldn't think of another rhyme here. 4 hours of sleep people)
Family bickering it continues
Parents are just concerned about the menus

But soon it shall be here
and we will all cheer
not just because weddings are complete
Or because we never thought we'd achieve this year's feat

But because she's happy
Sweet Robyn
And we forget about the crappy

Celebration time is here
And I'll try not to shed a tear
Bride dressed in white
She is her little sister's light

XOXO

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

It's cold out, therefore I nest


Am I the only one this happens to?
The weather starts to turn.
I must bake.
Put on jacket.
Find new recipe.
Repeat.

Thankfully I have coworkers who happily consume my obsession and therefore I keep my thighs happy.

Yesterday however, I caught the spirit. And if Stacy is reading this, she is certainly laughing at me. Football time!

Now some cared about the game, the players, this guy who apparently used to play for Wisconsin, and has now crossed the border. Whatever. But I was excited about football cooking. Neither of us watch football, in fact we both dislike football to a great extent. However, theme cooking, now that I like! Therefore...this time it was 'Healthy Game Foods'. Let the mocking begin. Mock if you must, but we enjoyed a most deliscious dinner of baked chicken fingers with home made french fries and edamame. Okay so the edamame, not so much in the spirit of football, but whatever, it was finger food. And if you like...you can share in one of my favorite recipes...baked chicken fingers

Mix in a bowl:
1 cup oatmeal
1/2 tbsp garlic powder
salt and pepper
onion powder
Cut chicken into strips (it can be frozen, doesn't matter). Coat the raw chicken in dijon mustard. Dip each chicken strip into oatmeal mixture. Line them up on a baking pan. Bake at 375 degrees for 25-30 minutes. If you like, turn up to broil for the last few minutes so they're crunchy!

Healthy chicken fingers! They are a Frank family favorite for 'game' night. Bear in mind, we did turn the football game on, and did not watch a single second of it. But whatever, I got into the spirit aspect of the thing.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Preparations

As I have mentioned in past posts, our household is all aflutter with H1N1 concerns. Several months ago, when the improperly named 'Swine Flu' became all the rage, my husband purchased masks. 20 masks in fact. 20 masks directly from 3M. Medical grade masks that could keep out even the strongest bio hazard.

Below, please find our model, Jeremy Scott Frank, 5'3" strutting down the runway in this season's hottest trend. The H1N1 Mask. Complete with two head straps, this mask will not be blown off in the wind, and will keep you free of the flu. Though likely without friends. But I guess that's the trade off.

Please notice, my favorite part of this photo. His glasses are fogged up due to his breathing into the mask and causing steam to rise into his glasses. Hot.

T-2 weeks until my sister's wedding! The wedding programs are almost complete. Hope Jason doesn't mind that I forgot the 'a' in his name. Whatever. Not critical. We spent 2 weeks sorting out the Hebrew on the programs, so for those of you attending the wedding, you must now look at the Hebrew on the programs. And then I require you 'ohh, and ahhh' over the high quality Hebrew text. I will be standing up on the bimah. And I want to hear you all, from the pews, ohhing and ahhing.

I may have had to google what a 'zayin' looks like versus an 'ayin' but that is unimportant.

Zayin, ayin, vav, tav, same difference. The only ones able to read it will be standing on the bimah. But regardless, the the nun's are nun's and the tav's are tav's and you all better take that program home and frame it.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Holidays

Nothing big to report, no iGallops this week, no trips to Costco, no human or canine injuries.

However, as I'm sure you can imagine, our household is all aflutter with concern regarding H1N1. And by household, I mean the two people and one canine which reside in #706. We have our masks. We have our first round of flu shots. Jeremy is calling periodically to his doctor to see when he can get his vaccination, he is high risk you know. Asthmatic. High Risk.

My sister's wedding is 3 weeks away. So that's exciting. I have nothing entertaining regarding that one.

Now, on to the activities which will consume this upcoming weekend. Yom Kippur. I remember once in Weight Watchers my leader said;


"Thin people know that hunger is not an emergency".


I often repeat this to myself when it has been over 3 hours since a meal and I am ready to eat my neighbor's fist. And then I start swearing at what a dumb saying this is. Hunger is an emergency. Huge one.

So in the spirit of the holidays, a poem...

It starts with the Rosh of the Hashana
We review the previous year and say ta-ta
Eat apples and honey
Everything looks sunny

Sermon's are long and we try to absorb
But we can't help but think, 'there can't be much more'
Hugs and kisses we share as we walk out the door
Later dinner is shared, and we have a Manischewitz pour

Ten days later Yom Kippur arrives
Just thinking about it, gives me a bit of the hives
We repent our sins, hope they are not great
Try not to complain, to our adjacent mate

Depriving Jews of our cherished food
True repentance, but puts me in quite a mood
Try to focus on the purpose of this fast
Don't just think about what you ate last

Sundown arrives early in my house
I'd be willing to eat that Cosi mouse
No emergency those thin people say
I tend to believe a different way

Happy Holidays to all...
And welcome to Fall...

Monday, September 21, 2009

Tour de Homes

This past weekend Jeremy, Steph and I decided to go on the parade of homes. We made a few stops, critiqued the homes, and made some astute observations as follows:

Steph: “At what point did we go from tagging along with our parents on the parade of homes and hating it, to deciding to attend on our own? All I remember is hating this thing, and now I choose to go”


Jeremy: “If I were gifted this 1.7 million house, I would also have to ask for the gift of redecoration”


Steph: In response to the whiskey bottles staged around and cigars placed on desks: “Why is it that they assume, people who buy $2 million homes also drink a lot? I thought people with no homes drank a lot. Apparently it goes both ways.”

And finally. We ended our tour de homes at the grand pubah. The 'dream home' located in Orono. And by Orono, I mean the farthest reaches of the farthest West potion of a far away suburb. The home was priced at $3,109,000 and featured an Olympic sized pool, theater, bar (clearly), refrigerator I couldn't seem to find because it was paneled like the cupboards, and then there was the main event...

The greatest feature of the home. This $3,109,000 home. Something I had never seen before, and frankly, hope to never see again. The igallop.

I kid you not. This device shown above sat along side a nordic trak within the home's fitness room. And I promise, I did not at all crawl on my hands and knees in the $3,109,000 home to figure out how to turn on the igallop, and I did not then climb on and test it out within one of the most expensive homes in Minnesota. Not at all. I would not do that.

I would like to explain the features of the product shown above, but I think this video demonstrates better than my words ever could:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fWZKjtFUeco

Yes, the igallop. Maybe I'm totally behind the curve and everyone knows about the glories of the iGallop. Maybe I have missed the iGallop phase, but this blows the snuggie hoopla out of the water.

In conclusion, I have written the following letter to Parade of homes:


Dear Parade of Homes,

Thank you for allowing me to parade through your homes. They were lovely, albeit overpriced, but lovely. I do not plan to buy any of them, but I would like to share that the decor was quite atrocious in most of the homes. Since you asked and all.


Further, I would like to thank you for the comic interlude which culminated my experience of the 'Tour de Homes'. The iGallop. When building this $3.1 million home I bet you were thinking to yourselves, gee, every $3.1 million home needs a faux horse in which to ride. Faux horse indeed. No need to waste ones time with a treadmill when you have the iGallop.


Thank you for your time, and allowing me to do what I love most - peer into the lives of others. Particularly those who own iGallops. Next time, it would be way more fun if these homes were occupied, and they were more surprise visits with thousands of people - here to view their homes. I dunno, just a thought.


Thank you Parade of homes,


Kara Frank

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

This life, it's never boring

Last weekend Jeremy and I ventured to a place I had been many times, but which had been a mysterious secret to him. And he hates secrets. This place....the Fiterman's home in Florida. I know, so secret. However, Debra always said that boys were not allowed in Naples unless she had a boyfriend. Therefore, when the wonderful Alex Arbit came along, Jeremy secretly nicknamed him 'TTN', which stood for 'Ticket To Naples'. The time had come. She had the boyfriend. We had the time. Airfare was cheap. And we were off. TTN worked like a charm!





We spent 3 1/2 lovely days in pure relaxation mode. Stress came in the form of the flotation device rotation, and ensuring that everyone had their turn on the 'good floatie'. Pressure came in the form of deciding what to each for each meal of the day. Hard work consisted of transporting myself from chair to pool and vice versa. It was a very rough weekend.








By day 3 we decided that we had enough of the pressure, and we were going to make dinner at home. We simply could not go out anymore. Getting oneself together to leave the house was too much work. Walking, driving or calling a cab, all too much work. Stay home. So we did, and cooked the delicious dinner seen below:



Lamb Burgers (recipe learned in the Whole Foods class that also resulted in my personal amputation of my left thumb)

Parmesan Potatoes (My mom's signature dish which Jeremy is mildly obsessed with)

Green Beans

When asked if we went shopping in Naples, we all, unequivocally responded, "No, we did not have time". It was all we could do to fit in the floating, sleeping and eating. No time for anything else. However, Jeremy and I did take a trip to the Naples Dollar Store, Linda Fiterman's favorite locale. We scoped out some children's cheerleader costumes should anyone need one. And that was enough of the strenuous activity.

So thanks Alex. Jeremy appreciates your presence so he could visit the illusive Naples. You can stick around. :-)

In other news, I am writing this post from Dunn Brothers while I'm supposed to be studying for this big exam I have all week for work. However, I am blogging. Much more exciting. And while blogging, material just keeps rolling my way. While sitting here, pretending to study, and sipping my tea, in walked Michael Jackson. I tried to get a better picture but he kept moving. How rude. I knew he wasn't dead. MJ, in Minneapolis Dunn Brothers.





That's all I've got for today. My brain is fried. Blake's motto has always been to foster a love of learning. Apparently I failed. I have no love of learning. This week is not fun for me. 13 years of Blake did not accomplish their goal. I guess I am living up to the second motto: "Expecting great things of some, and good things of all". Oh Blake School. How kind.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Two, two, two posts in One!

First...a Punky Report:

Punky and I were riding in the elevator in the Groveland the other day when we noticed something curious on the wall (note the use of 'curious' who also happens to be Punk's special friend). We noticed the following:


In case you can't read my fantastic photo it says, "Further improvement requests from the Dog Committee". To which, Punky turned to me and said, 'Gee, Mom, I'd sure like to be a member of The Groveland dog committee'.

Maybe I should call the office and tell them Punky wants to join the 'Dog Committee'. See what Marge and Marty have to say.

Second, I was recently honored to be chosen by a fellow blogger as one of her favorite blogs of brilliance! Who knew our dance lesson mishaps and blow up toys gone wrong were brilliant, but I'll take it!

Now, Here are the rules:

A. Choose 7 blogs that I find brilliant in content or design.

B. Show the 7 winners’ names and links on your blog....

So, here are my 7 blogs of brilliance:

1. http://www.stylemepretty.com - I became obsessed with this during wedding planning, and cannot stop. I love it
2. http://nouveaupoor.com - Started by an old friend of mine from Blake
3. http://crankyfitness.com - I'm a sucker for anything health/fitness related
4. http://apartmenttherapy.com - Okay, so I'm a sucker for a lot of things. I also love anything home/decorating/cooking related.
5. http://ronisweigh.com/ - I have followed Roni for a long time, and love her journey
6. http://www.mattlogelin.com/ - Matt's wife went to Blake and he is a phenomenal writer. The only writer who actually makes me cry. Sad, but wonderful.
7. http://heavytable.com/ - Again, I like to eat. And workout. And decorate.

C. List at least 10 honest things about yourself.
1. I change my handwriting often. Whatever, its not that weird. I don't want to be detected by my hand writing! That's creepy!

2. I hate to wear things with food objects on them. (i.e. shirts with watermelons, pants with pineapples, etc... lets hope hamburger tee shirts don't become fashionable. I won't wear them.)

3. I refuse to measure laundry soap, even though its the only thing my mom does measure.

4. I have 2 open table accounts so I can make multiple reservations at once. OHHH, I'M A REBEL!

5. I eat fiber one cereal out of small white ramekins. I eat pudding out of small green ramekins. I case the 4 previous items were not proof, I have strange habits.

6) I bake when I'm stressed.

7) British accents annoy me. Sorry, don't hate me British people who read my blog. All 0 of you.

8) I don't like key chains. I went through the key chain phase of 2000, when I had like 10 key chains. And didn't even have keys yet. And now I have 0 key chains. I know, I'm a fascinating person. You know you want to keep reading the next 2 things.

9) Apple juice and Salmon give me headaches.

10) I got in my first car accident at the Chaska KFC. I called my parents and said I was at KFC with my friend Sarah, and they assumed the Wayzata one, and I didn't say differently. They said that if there was no damage I should drive away quickly. So I did. #1. I wasn't in Wayzata, I was in Chaska. We just thought it would be fun to go for a drive. #2. Sorry man who drove a big rusted truck in Chaska in 1999. I didn't notice any damage.

So there it is! 10 honest things! Since most of my friends don't blog...I think you should post your 10 honest things in the comment section. Or on Facebook. Please! I told you I don't wear clothes with food items on them. Now it's your turn!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Hope you enjoyed this past weekend's holiday.

Labor Day? Not yet

Christmas? Thank goodness no

Halloween? Lovely, but no


Kara's Birthday. Yes.



This past weekend was filled with fun and celebration in honor of my birth 26 years ago. I'm modest, I know. But it truly was a great weekend, filled with visitors and friends, and a wedding where I was serenaded with happy birthday.



A short recap, because you must pretend to care:



Friday - wonderful Shabbat Dinner at Dave Wile's mom's house. She made an assortment of salads from my new favorite thing. 101 fresh summer salads from the New York Times. They were amazing. Here is the link. Try them all. All 101 of them.

//www.nytimes.com/2009/07/22/dining/22mlist.html?scp=1&sq=101%20simple%20salads%20for%20the%20season%20july%2022,%202009&st=cse



Saturday: State Fair with Adam and Sally, our visitors for the weekend. It was wonderful, and animal and food filled. Sally and Adam seemed pleased with everything but the bloody cow in the Miracle of Birth barn. Bloody as in just gave birth. We could have skipped that one. Instead we just moved on and found some pronto pups to forget about it.


Saturday Evening: Great dinner at Barrio with my fantastic husband!


Sunday: Yoga, brunch, Lisa and Dan's Wedding. Now most of you have heard me complain for months about attending yet another wedding on my birthday. However, this like the one last year, gave me nothing to complain about. The lovely bride announced during her speech that it was my birthday and asked the band to play happy birthday. That made for a happy Kara.


However, the bride announced me as Kara Weinblatt. Fine. Until a woman comes running across the room like her pants were on fire towards me. Now Jeremy is new to this who marriage thing, so he has some things to learn, and here is a prime example. This woman runs up to our table and literally shouts, "Whose the Weinblatt?". Everyone looks at me. I sink into my chair. I am fairly used to this as my uncle is well known around town. I said, I am Alan's niece, Jay's daughter. This woman stares at me quizzically and literally grabs my arm and drags me across the room. Jeremy just watched the kidnapping occur with wide eyes as I was yanked away. He did not follow.


This woman drags me over to her family and finally explains the situation. Her Grandmother's last name was Weinblatt, and she had never met another. She quizzed me on my family genealogy and who was who. Well, I can hardly keep track of who is actually related to me and who my parents/grandparents call aunt/uncle/grandma but whom is not actually related. Therefore, when she probed. I froze. I froze and just said, my dad's email address is Weinblatt@aol.com I don't know anymore! I ran away, and proceeded to explain to Jeremy that, in the future, if anyone comes up to me shouting, follow me. Do not leave me unattended.

All in all a great weekend. I wish I was not born at such a popular wedding time, but you can't complain when 250 people sing happy birthday to you!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Less Cancer, More Tutu's

We did it! This past weekend was the Breast Cancer 3 day, and Debra and I successfully completed every single one of 60 miles. (More if you could the circles around the snack booth, the runs to the bathroom. I mean, it was for sure more like 100 miles)

I could wrap it up in a paragraph form. I could summarize the event, and where we walked. I could also put you to sleep. Therefore, I'll spice it up a bit. When I was in my sorority (AOII in case I haven't shouted it from the rooftops enough), we played a game at dinner each night. High/Low. We each went around the table and restated our 'highs' and 'lows' of the day. So I will do a Breast Cancer 3 day version of High/Low.

Here goes....

(This is us resting after day 1)

HIGH: The moment opening ceremonies were done and we began to walk, the skies cleared and the rain ceased.
LOW: When I say rain ceased that means that up until that point we stood in cold freaking rain while we loaded our bags onto a truck and hid under a tent to avoid being soaked before we walked 60 miles.

HIGH: Day one should have been named Kara Frank, this is your life because we passed each memorable point of my life, the site of our wedding reception, the chain of lakes I have grown up around, my high school (The Blake School), the sculpture garden, my condo, Jeremy's office and my sister's office, a big development I am working on at work, and finally on to my office! And I like telling people about my life, so let me tell you, the walkers around me knew all about how these places impacted me.
LOW: I was starting to get sick of the string cheese snacks at each pit stop

HIGH: Rosemount High School football players who were waiting at the campsite to put up our tent for us. Let me tell you, I almost cried when they offered to put up my tent. You think I know how to put up a TENT?!
LOW: I then slept in said tent, and inside the tent, I slept in a bag. A sleeping bag. And woke up declaring that humans are not meant to sleep in bags.

HIGH: I made it through a night of CAMPING!!!
LOW: There seemed to be an overarching theme of cancer throughout the walk. The signs, the discussion. I was thinking, more people in tutu's, less of the cancer talk (okay, that's a joke, in case you didn't' pick up on it)

HIGH: Our INCREDIBLE cheering section! In all we had 37 people come out and cheer for us over the weekend. That is unbelievable.
LOW: I had to shower in a truck.

HIGH: It was a truck with warm water
LOW: I had to shower in a truck.
HIGH: Walking next to women who were currently undergoing chemo, radiation, or whom had undergone radical surgeries.
LOW: I couldn't find a way to complain because they had been through so much, my complaining was unfounded. And we all know I like a good complain session.
HIGH: This was an unbelievable experience, that pushed my boundaries and forced me to be in new situations. We raised over $6.1 million dollars last weekend, and walked with some incredible men and women. It was the experience of a lifetime.
LOW: I slept in a bag, inside a tent, and showered in a truck.
It was a lot of training, a lot of work, a lot of fundraising, and worth every single second. (and every single foot disease I gain from showering in the aforementioned truck) My wish is that none of us ever have to suffer from breast cancer, or any other disease for that matter, but if we do, let me tell you, there is an incredible support team out there, fighting like hell to get rid of this disease. So let's find a cure, because I for one, would rather not shower in a truck. But if I have to, I will.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Today I almost died

Let me start from the beginning. (and keep in mind, as a hint, typing this is quite a challenge right now)

I found a cooking class at Whole Foods that sounded fun. It was a class on making a variety of different burgers. Who doesn't love a burger, right? So we signed up with Debra and Alex.

The class schedule is as follows:
#1 - an awesome lamb burger. Yum.
#2 - a buffalo jucy lucy - obviously great.


#3 - ginger pork burger (I swear, I didn't even try the entire delicious thing and I did not enjoy it immensely)
#5 - Salmon burger. Thought I'd hate it, but it was actually quite good. My mom would like it.
#6 - homemade veggie burger. Fabulous

And my favorite of all?
#7 -
I'm not even a cake person and this was delish!

I digress. Somewhere between #2 and #3 our instructor shared with us a little tip about cutting onions. It was a way to bisect them, and then chop them to get a better chop. Lovely! Brilliant! And this is when I decide that I am clearly a professional chef.

This morning, in an effort to use up extra tomatoes and basil from our garden, I decided to make a crock pot tomato sauce. How Martha Stewart of me, I know. I chop the tomatoes, done. I take out the onion. I chop it in half. My mind races back to the class and the exciting new 'technique'. I slice. I scream. Instead of just slicing the onion, I have now also taken off my finger. Well maybe not off, but it certainly felt that way. I looked at it, grabbed a towel and pressed. I swore, I screamed, and then swore some more.

If you know Jeremy, you know that you do not want to call him in a crisis unless it really is a crisis because he will make it a crisis. And this is why I love him, but this is also why I waited a while to call. Finally, I looked around and noticed my house looked like a war zone, with blood everywhere, and decided to make the call.

Kara: "Uh, Jer, I cut myself. I'm bleeding"
Jeremy: "Put on a band aid"
Kara: "Like soaking through the cloth towel bleeding"
Jeremy: "I'm on my way we're going to the ER"

And so he did. And 3 minutes later, the panic set in, and so did the pain. So I called my dad. He called my mom. And 10 minutes later my fleet of vehicles arrived to escort me to Abbott hospital at 7:30am.

I walked into the hospital with my bloody rag, looking like I'd been shot in the finger, and explained my story. I left out the part about the cooking class, feeling it was an unnecessary detail. However, it soon came out and the entire hospital came to look at, 'that girl that thought she was being cool'. Note to self: You have not been to cooking school, you have never worked in a restaurant, you're not even particularly coordinated, don't try 'special techniques'.

End Result:


No worries, I asked each and every doctor and nurse that came to stare at the idiot, and I can still walk. Apparently smart moves like this do not hinder ones ability to walk 60 miles.

Feel free to send your pity in the form of a comment.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Maria Mendoza Frank

In the mail yesterday we received news from our newborn child, Maria. Well not exactly from Maria, it was more from the "adoption agency" of sorts.

Remember when you didn't like your siblings so for their birthdays your parents had to pick out a gift and put your name on it to make you look nice? You didn't want to get a gift for them, so they had to force it on you. No? Okay, maybe that's just in my family. Regardless.

That happened to us this time. But not with our siblings, rather with our adopted daughter.

In response to our lack of letter or gift sending, we received a letter in the mail.

This is Jeremy reading the letter. (duh.)

The letter stated that Maria had been sad because we had not yet written her. 8 month old Maria was sad. She was so distraught that they were sending us an activity and all we had to do was put it in an envelope and mail it to Maria.

They sent this map:


And we were to forward the map on to Maria so she could play with it, along with the enclosed stickers. We were told to mark where we live, and they had marked where Maria lived on the map.


So, I have an 8 month old niece, and, as bright as she is, if you gave her stickers, she would try to eat them. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that if we sent maria the enclosed map and stickers, she would likely do the same. I'm just guessing that Maria would prefer something along the lines of smashed peas to stickers of people working out. Again, just a thought I had.

While I held the map, looking at it, guilt building, I turned to Jeremy and said I thought we should send it to Maria.

Kara: "Look, they spent a ton of money on this freaking publication, the least we can do is mail it to Maria" (note the Jewish guilt that is building inside of me at that moment)
Jeremy: "Kara, it is significantly possible that Maria does not exist. And if she does exist, she is likely 18 years old. And if she does exist, and by some miracle this map does reach her, I'm thinking there are things she would rather have than a map and stickers"
Kara: "oh, yea"
And before I knew it, the map of our home, and Maria's home, as well as stickers of bar bells, and people in workout clothes was in the garbage. (why the aforementioned images, that I still cannot figure out)

I still think we should go on a mission to find Maria. After all, she is our baby. Maria Mendoza Frank.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The walk that should have been uneventful

In our final long-ish walk before the actual Breast Cancer 3-day (Aug 21-23) we set off to walk from our condos downtown, to Debra's parents house in Minnetonka. They wanted to be a part of the oh-so-fabulous idea we hatched early on to walk to friends/families houses. We left early and they were making us breakfast as we had to leave that afternoon for my sister's bachelorette party.

We walked. And walked. And thought how sick it was that this 11-12 mile walk was a cakewalk and seemed unnecessary compared to the long ones. We walked some more.

We arrived at the entrance of the Fiterman neighborhood development.

Debra states to Kara: "Pick a Direction, we can go left or right, they both take us to the same place, same distance."


Kara: "Lets go right"


Debra: "Okay"

Fatal mistake. Turning right meant that the beautiful paved sidewalk would soon end and we would find ourselves walking through the previous night's downpour on a road which had just been torn up to pour new drive lanes and curbs. We moved on to the curb and tried tight rope walking the curb as the street was muck, and the grass was no longer.

Soon, we find that the curb ends. Our options: #1 Walk through the 3 inches of water that sits in the street. #2 Walk on the mud on the side where grass should be.


Mud it is.

We walk, Debra in the lead. After a short while, I look ahead and notice my co-walker is going down. Fainting? Falling? Nope, sinking into the mud. Before I know it she is past her ankles in quicksand-like mud. As the fearless and loyal teammate that I am, I looked at her, screamed, and ran away. I didn't say I was stupid. I ran, as she lifted each leg with her arm, to pull herself out of the quicksand/mud.

Reference: image below

We laughed, and laughed. I laughed particularly hard as I stood, bone dry and perfectly clean. Hilarious. Because I'm not the filthy one!

And then, the critical mistake, she turns around.



And I once again start laughing. I turn to Debra and tell her that it looks as though she has just had a violent diarrhea, down her leg. She cranes her neck to see the remnants. And once again falls on the ground laughing. This time however, the long walk, significant water consumption, and lack of restrooms caused another fatal mistake. My teammate begins to pee. And then lets me know, she is currently wetting her pants. Yes, filthy, wet, and now wetting her pants. For an extensive period of time. Not just a little, but full blown peeing. Her boyfriend is a lucky man.

Sorry Debra, it just had to be told.

So now we continue walking. Kara - perfectly clean, looking forward to breakfast. Debra - a royal mess.

The walk that should have been uneventful, turned into the best one of all. I really wish she'd pee her pants more often, it certainly would make walking more exciting. Just a thought.

And when we arrived, 50% of us a giant mess, 50% of us sweaty but otherwise clean, there were some wonderful decorations awaiting our arrival:


Note the bra hanging from the flag:

A truly eventful walk.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Uh, did you miss the memo?

Picture this:

I am driving out of my office this afternoon on the way to one of my buildings. Our office happens to sit next door to the Saint Paul Saint's baseball stadium. This often causes significant congestion during summer afternoons, so I know to be careful and drive slowly down Energy Park Drive. (except for the day the officer found me, but moving on)

Today, I am driving, minding my own business, when I come accross the following:


Oh yes, to my right, what should I see but the Titanic. I drive by, and then, pausing a few moments, say to myself, out loud, in my car, alone, "Wait a second!". Eureka! Did I just see what I think I saw? I pull over. I turn my car around, and I drive back, now this I have to see again. Yep, confirmed it.

What I passed was a replica of the titanic made into a giant blow up slide. You've got that right. The unsinkable ship that went down, killing over 2,000 people has now been turned into a giant slide. I am so sorry Leonardo DeCaprio and Kate Winslet that your tragedy occurred, but look at all the fun it has created for small children.

Think of the possibilities for disasters turned into children's play things...

*The World Trade Towers monkey bars
*The Sri Lankan Tsunami wave pool
*The United flight 93 flume ride

Sick, I know. But I'm not the one who created the Titanic blow up slide. This photo really does not do it justice, but at least it should give you an idea of the hilarity that I just witnessed.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Photographic journey....

Of this past weekend's death march. Or "training walk" as Debra calls it. Please see the map below for the almost 22 miles we marched, I mean walked. It is sick.

Saturday was a nice little 9 mile walk. Not nothing, but not insane. Did some lakes. Came home.

Sunday was to be a big kahuna. It was scheduled to be one of our last long walks. So, we decided to continue with our plan to walk to family/friends houses and allow them the great honor of cooking lunch for us. This time, it was Debra's sister Ann who had the pleasure of our odoriferous company. Let me take you on a photographic journey of this walk.

We started our walk at our condos, 317 Groveland Avenue...DOWNTOWN MINNEAPOLIS at 6:15am.

We walked down Minnetonka Boulevard. Through Minneapolis, Saint Louis Park, Hopkins, met up with my parents for a bit and into Minnetonka.

We turned on Plymouth Road and continued on through Minnetonka, to Plymouth.

We then turned onto County Road 6 and this is where I lost count of cities. When roads start with 'county road' you know you are freakin' far away.

Once we arrived in Plymouth we felt pretty darn good. My toes were hurting a bit but we really felt we had made progress. Now this is already not a short drive, let alone walking! We stopped at a gas station because we were starving, and moments from our death. We raced to the bathroom and found this sign along the way.

And you know me, all I wanted to do was grab a banana and bring it into the hallway and scream, "LOOK, I HAVE A BANANA IN THE HALLWAY". Seriously, one of the stranger things I have ever seen.

We continue walking another 78 miles and I start to have to pee again. Really bad. And we are in the middle of Maple Grove, or Osseo, or who the heck knows where, but I have to pee, and my feet hurt and I can't think about anything else. Finally, I make the decision that I have to squat. Debra helps me scope out an ideal tree and I go for it. That's right - this girl is outdoorsy. Okay, that's a giant lie. I'm not outdoorsy, but I peed on a tree.


We continue walking, no more than .6 miles, and what should I spot, but the following sight:

That's right. A biffy. Sick irony. And after 17 miles I did not find it very funny.

We walk a bit more, and I we begin to see this...


We walked, from our houses, DOWNTOWN MINNEAPOLIS, to a place with cows. To farms. Now that's ridiculous.

Walking some more, and we see the best sight of all. Well almost. A car passes us honking and we notice it is Ann, Debra's sister! She stops...


We walk closer, and notice signs...

Our cheerleaders had arrived with cheering signs! Ann and her daughter Eve were there to cheer and give us the best gift of all, Popsicles!!!!!!

Hot and tired, we continue to walk for what seemed like ages. Below please find a list of activities we crafted that we could have done in the 7.5 hours it took us to walk to Osseo:
1. Flown to Europe
2. Read a book
3. Slept an entire night
4. Flown to Florida, arrived at our location, put on a swim suit, get some food and drink, and be sitting by the pool
5. Worked a full day

But we chose to walk 21 miles to train for the breast cancer 3 day. And again, I ask, please cure cancer, my feet/knees/back/legs/butt hurt.

Big thanks to Ann for the wonderful lunch, and amazing cheering section! Thank you to all of our supporters, we couldn't do it without you. But seriously, my feet hurt.