About Me

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What is a PRG?? PRG is something someone started calling me long ago - almost in another lifetime. It stands for "Puerto Rican Goddess." Most days lately, I just feel like a Pretty Regular Girl. So this blog will journal my days as a PRG. Some days that will mean my adventures as a Puerto Rican Goddess; other days I'll just be a Pretty Regular Girl. I hope you can find entertainment in both.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Weekend Recap

I had such a fantastic time this weekend! I spent the weekend with my fellow bartender, Shasta. We made it a girls' weekend and had a blast! We left work early Friday night and headed out to one of the pubs in the area. We danced the night away, and before we knew it, it was 2 am!

Well, what are two young, good-looking bartenders to do after the bar closes? Find an after-party of course! We ended up heading over to my buddy Matt's place, where we hung out with my regular Thursday night crowd of guys. They're my boys that come up to see me at the bar every Thursday night. Here's a picture of me and one of my boys, Philip:

We stayed at their place until it was time to take Janet back to work, which was about 11 o'clock the next morning! Saturday we lay pretty low. Hung out at Shasta's house with her mom and her kids, who are adorable! Soon enough, it was time to get ready for Saturday night. We had planned to go to Billy Bob's Texas, the world's7 largest honky tonk.

Now, those of you who hail from somewhere outside of the great state of Texas may not be familiar with the term "honky tonk." Basically, it's a country bar. But really it's so much more than that. According to dictionary.com, a honky tonk is a "cheap, noisy and garish nightclub or dance hall." That pretty much describes Billy Bob's! It's located in the Fort Worth Stockyards, not far from where I used to work. I had never been to Billy Bob's before Saturday night, although it is one of the biggest tourist attractions in the area. Here's a pic of me and Shasta at the beginning of the night:

Froggy's is a really cool place on the water, and they have a sand volleyball court and a slip 'n slide! And *this* is Justin, our bartender at Froggy's. Notice the very nice eyes Justin has? Careful ladies, he has a "kind of" girlfriend! Huh? Yeah, I'm actually *really* over these guys and their "kind of" girlfriends. Man up, for crying out loud! (Justin is actually really sweet & a fantastic bartender. He's not committing bc she just moved away, so...)

The saddest site at the end of the night is a bunch of empty shot glasses.

And here's a pic of me and my kickball buddy, Brian. All of his friends call him "Carp." As in, "drinks like a fish." LOL

So that was my weekend, in a nutshell. We ate, we drank, we were merry! We laughed, we cried, and a good time was had by all!
I promise to get back to your regularly scheduled programming after today. This weekend was definitely the exception, rather than the rule, for my posting. I had intended to post some this weekend, but when you're staying with someone else, it's difficult to plan alone time.
Hope everyone had as great a weekend as mine was. Let's have a great week!

Word Count: 514

Friday, August 27, 2010

Words of Wisdom

I don't have a lot of words of my own today. Rather, I am quite "down in the dumps." My mom keeps telling me that I will have good days and bad days as I try to sort through my life, my feelings, and my thoughts about everything going on in my life.

Today is definitely one of the bad days. I don't like to post a lot about my personal life on days like these. No reason to drag everyone else down with me. Suffice it to say, I have a lot going on in my head that wouldn't be much fun to read about.

So...today I thought I would share a few quotes that are helping me through. The first is a quote from Erma Bombeck, a novelist and humor columnist in the latter part of the twentieth century. "When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and could say, 'I used everything you gave me.'"

This is a quote that reminds me to give my very best every day. Even if I am just tending bar and slinging drinks all day, I can still be friendly. I can be a good listener, and put a smile on someone else's face.

The next quote is actually from The Message, and is found in Matthew 16:24-26 "Then Jesus went to work on his disciples. 'Anyone who intends to come to me has to let me lead. You're not in the driver's seat; I am. Don't run from suffering; embrace it. Follow me and I'll show you how. Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way, my way, to finding yourself, your true self. What kind of deal is it to get everything you want but lose yourself? What could you ever trade your soul for?'"

This quote gives me great comfort knowing He is in the driver's seat. I wouldn't say that I'm exactly to the point of embracing the suffering, but I'm definitely trying to learn from it. I know that I've talked a lot about finding myself and discovering what I want out of life. This verse says that self-sacrifice is the way to discovering that. To truly give up everything I thought I knew, I thought I needed, that I thought I wanted. In so doing, I will find my *true* self - the person I am meant to be.

Finally, I leave you with one additional quote. This quote is actually part of someone's signature line on the NaNoWriMo board. There is no annotation, so I don't know to whom I should attribute it. It's too bad, really, because I love the quote. "Ever tried? Ever failed? No matter, try again, fail again. Fail better."

I love this quote for so many reasons. First of all, it is a reminder to KEEP ON TRYING. That you *will* fail. That mistakes will be made. But it is what we learn from each experience that is important. A mistake is only a mistake if we fail to gain anything from it.

I hope some of these quotes are able to help someone else. I know they have been and are a tremendous help to me. I have to remind myself to take it a day at a time and not try to fix all the world's problems at once. So I'm curious to know what has helped you through a difficult time. Is there a quote you've read, a mantra you've adopted, or a ritual you do that has helped you? Feel free to share!


Word Count: 721

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Yes, Sarah Jane, You are a Grown-Up

I'm pretty proud of myself for keeping up my blogging every day. I just went back and counted, and I started updating again August 12. Since then, I've had eleven (this will be twelve) posts. That means I've only missed three days of blogging in two weeks. I know it doesn't seem like that big of a deal, but I have a hard time sticking to anything!

Today, just for fun, I thought I would write about my first "grown-up" purchase. For most people, that would be a car, or a house, or maybe something for a baby. Not for me. I've had a couple of different cars, and I've bought a house. No baby yet, but I've bought plenty of baby paraphernalia for others!

Today's post isn't about any of those things. There is, however, one semi-major purchase that sticks out in my head as being my first "grown-up" purchase. It ranks right up there with my professional Kitchen-Aid mixer, but the mixer came a few years later. Behold, my very first - and arguably my very favorite - grown up purchase:

A Dyson vacuum cleaner! I had been wanting one forever, but they were just too expensive. So we kept going to Wal-Mart and spending $35 on a cheap vacuum. That would last a couple of months, then it would break. Pretty soon, we were right back where we started: in the vacuum aisle at Wal-Mart, picking out our next cheap piece of crap vacuum cleaner.

So...one day Jay and I were at Best Buy. I don't remember our original reason for going, but I'm pretty sure it was to buy a video game or some other important piece of electronic equipment. Then I saw it, and it was like the heavens opened! They had a new Dyson that was at a reduced price because it was out of the box. I don't think it had ever been used, but the box was destroyed in shipment or something.

Anyway, I left Best Buy that day a very happy girl, with visions of a sparkling clean home in my head. I can't promise that my home has been immaculate and sparkly clean every day since then. What I can promise is that I get a little gleeful every time I use my Dyson. Or, as I like to call it, my "Big Girl" vacuum!

So tell me...when did you first know you were a grow-up? What was the first grown-up purchase you made?


Word Count: 1,182

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Stream of Consciousness Writing

Someone on the NaNoWriMo board suggested "stream of consciousness" writing as a warm-up exercise. I thought I'd give it a shot, so while I was sitting at lunch today, here's what I came up with. Fair warning, though, it's not all sunshine and roses.

*Sydney - I feel bad for abandoning her - guilt? Makes me feel like a bad person. And of course, as always, I fear if I'm not a good "dog-mommy" I won't be a good real mommy. I always feared I would be a bad mother, which is one BIG reason I never wanted kids. All of that changed when I met Jeremy.

*So kind, so sweet, and I love watching him play with Cheyenne. I knew I wanted to spend the rest of my life making him happy. Nurturing each other and nurturing our children.

*Savannah Dai, if we had a little girl. Now I may not get my baby girl. But I will have my Savannah Dai. She will be the female main character of my NaNoWriMo novel.

*It doesn't have a name yet, but Savannah Dai's novel is part chick lit, part memoir. It's the story of a girl who loses everything - her job, her money, her love - and has to find out who she really is.

*I'm excited and terrified to take Savannah Dai on this journey to find herself. I'm heartbroken that I have to take this journey myself. I heard some good advice from a bar guest on Sunday, but it's so hard to take. He said that I should pray at the end of a relationship. Pray and say "thank you."

*Take what I've learned from it, and thank you that now I can move on to other things. It makes sense, but at the same time, it's the hardest, stupidest advice I've been given.

*I don't *want* to move on. I don't *want* to cry every day. To feel my heart break a little more every time he crosses my mind.

*I'm not a girl who *needs* a man to feel complete. But I *like* being around him. I *like* having him in my life. No one has ever made me feel so beautiful, sexy, and special.

*I know eventually I will have to dig deeper to resolve these feelings and move on. Especially as Savannah Dai begins to develop and I start to flesh out her story. I just don't feel like I can do it right now, today.


Word Count: 415

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

New 101 List is Up!

As prep for NaNoWriMo, I have a list of writing exercises to perform each day. Today, I decided to tackle one that I should have done a long time ago. It's my "101 in 1,001" list.

101 in 1,001 is a list of 101 things I'd like to accomplish. Then I have 1,001 days to check them all off my list. So without further ado, I give you my new list! It's over in the right-hand column of my blog, and I'll be posting about each item as I check it off my list.

I already have a few things planned, like #30: Float the river with friends. We're planning to go September 25, so check back around then for that post. I'd also like to check off #29 soon: Go to a game at Cowboys Stadium. Last season was the first season in the big beautiful new stadium, but we were pretty strapped financially and didn't get to go to a game. This season I really want to make that happen!

There are some fun items on the list, too, like #81: Take a photo with a random stranger. I'm gonna get a real kick out of checking that one off my list! Of course, I had to put some things on the list to challenge myself. See, for example, #90: Go vegetarian for one week. I'm not sure what I was thinking, but surely I can survive one week, can't I? CAN'T I?!

You can read the whole list for yourself at the right. Which ones stick out to you? Which would you like to see me accomplish first? And of course, please share what you have on *your* list!


Word Count: 1,292

Monday, August 23, 2010

Working Toward a Goal

Have you ever noticed the list in the right-hand column of my blog? That one over there? >>>>

It's my 101 in 1,001 list. The idea is you make a list of 101 things you want to do. Then you have 1,001 days to complete your list. That's just under three years. I made my list a long time ago, but then I sort of neglected it (along with my blog). In the spirit of reinvention, I'm trying to revive my blog. Therefore, I need to revive my 101 list, too!

One thing I know I'm keeping on my list is to participate in NaNoWriMo. NaNoWriMo is short for National Novel Writers Month, which is the month of November. You - and many other crazy people like you - attempt to write a novel of at least 50,000 words in 30 days.

To reach my goal of 50,000 words, I need to write at least 1,667 words per day. As of today, there are exactly 70 days until the start of NaNoWriMo 2010. I am going to be updating my blog more frequently as a means of practicing writing. I'd love for you to help me! I need writing prompts, as my life isn't that exciting.

So, what would you like to read about? Books? Movies? Family? I'll talk about almost anything!


Word Count: 220

Sunday, August 22, 2010

I'm on a Boat!

OK, well, not right this second, but I was on a boat all day yesterday. The funny thing is, all day, I kept thinking, "I'm on a boat." It reminded me of that hilarious Old Spice commercial. You know the one. Where at the end he says, "I'm on a horse."

What?! You don't know that one? OK, well because I'm the nice girl that I am, and because I believe you need to laugh histerically like I do when I see this, I'll show you the one I mean.

See? Hilarious, right? I KNOW! (Said in my best "Monica" voice.) Watch it again, you'll laugh even harder!


Friday, August 20, 2010

Confession #7

I'm a reality TV junkie! I simply cannot resist the carnage that comes with these reality "stars" getting so caught up in themselves! The shows I am watching currently are:

*Big Brother
*Real Housewives of *Everywhere*
*Project Runway
*Top Chef

And here's one I can't believe I'm about to admit -Repo Men. To be fair, I've only seen two episodes, on the recommendation of a new friend. When I told him I was a reality TV junkie, he asked if I watch tosh.0 and Repo Men. Never having seen either, I had no idea what to expect.

That very night after I got home, I was having a hard time sleeping. I started flipping channels and lo and behold found Repo Men. I watched a couple of episodes, but I'm not totally sold. I finally watched tosh.0 today, which did have its funny moments. tosh.0 is a show that basically recaps all sorts of funny videos from the internet. Some are funny, some are gross, others downright stupid! It's something I might watch from time to time, but I certainly won't set my Tivo for it.

So, what are your favorite TV shows? What should I be watching that I'm missing out on? Feel free to share!


Thursday, August 19, 2010

Thirsty Thursday

I went out for drinks with a girlfriend last night to celebrate her starting a new job. She used to be the bar manager at the bar where I work. In her honor, I thought I would post my current favorite shot, a Scooby Snack.

1/2 oz Malibu coconut rum
1/2 oz Midori melon liqueur
1/2 oz pineapple juice
1 1/2 oz cream

Pour contents into a shaker filled with ice. Cover and shake until mixed and chilled. Strain into a highball glass and shoot.

And just for fun, here's a shot I made up when we were experimenting with a new bottle of whiskey.

Hot Apple Pie
1 1/2 oz Apple Pucker
1/2 oz Fireball cinnamon whiskey
2 drops grenadine

Pour Apple Pucker and whiskey into a shaker filled with ice. Cover and shake until mixed and chilled. Strain into a highball glass rimmed with brown sugar. Add two drops of grenadine and shoot.



Tuesday, August 17, 2010

New Blog Look!

It's been a long time coming! I've been blogging (sporadically) now for over two years, and had the same generic template the whole time.

My friend Denise has a great blog about being a wife, mother to triplets, and deal-finder. She updated her own blog recently, and it looks great. She was gracious enough to share her source with me so I could do the same.

Denise also has started a photography business recently. I wonder if she can photograph food. ; )

Be sure to check out her blog, Bits & Pieces and her photography blog Denise Slater Photography. (Also, lemme know what you think of the new look!)


Monday, August 16, 2010

Confession #6 - I'm a Tech Junkie

I think I *literally* bought the third iPod ever created. We're talking Generation 1 here! Of course, since I have HORRIBLE luck with electronics, I am now on my 8th iPod, but that's beside the point.
I also have a couple of laptops, three SLR cameras (one is DSLR, 2-35mm), a Wii, XBox, XBox 360, and myriad other electronics paraphernalia. So, what's my latest quest, you ask?

Behold: (queue angelic music)

iPad awesomeness!!
I know, I'm really late to this party. I'm not actually *late* per se, but they have been out for a few months now. I'm actually right on schedule for mine, though, as I had always planned to buy myself one for my birthday.
In case anyone's counting, my birthday is exactly 31 days from today. I went to the Apple Store this evening where two things happened. 1) I got the BEST customer service I think I have ever had and 2) I got completely sold on the iPad.
A very friendly girl named Chelsea approached me, and - poor thing - I don't think she knew what she was getting into! Forty-five minutes later, I left the store, feeling completely satisfied with my impending purchase. In case you've been living in a cave, here are some of the things I'm looking forward to on my iPad:
*eReader app called iBook (also has a Kindle app available for download)
*mobile web browsing without having to lug around a laptop
*over 100,000 apps including geocaching (see yesterday's post) & games for my nieces/nephews
*stylus available (add'l purchase) to write notes, draw pictures, etc
I'm really excited to get my iPad and figure out all the cool things I can do on it. I've been reading the threads at 2 Peas and, from what I can tell, I won't be able to put it down! So, what do you think about the iPad? Do you have one? Love it? Hate it? I'd love to hear what you use *your* iPad for!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

I Believe I Could Have a New Addiction

So, I was cruising around the interwebs today, and came across a blog that mentions geocaching. Wanting to find out more, I went to www.geocaching.com. What a wealth of information!

According to the site, what geocaching is, in a nutshell, is a treasure hunt. Sure, you use more high-tech gadgets than you did when you were a kid, but it's the same basic concept. People from all over the world hide treasures ("caches") and then give the latitude/longitude. Once you find the cache, you sign the logbook & record your experience online. Sometimes there is something to trade, such as a trinket or a note.

I definitely have more to learn about geocaching, but so far I'm intrigued. Any experiences or helpful hints would be appreciated.


Friday, August 13, 2010

I'm Still Not a Food Photographer

However, I wanted to post another recipe I've tried recently. I adapted this recipe for Strawberry Lemon Granita from www.mybakingaddiction.com .

1 cup water
3/4 cup sugar
3 Tbsp Country Time Strawberry Lemonade mix
3 cups frozen strawberries, slightly thawed

Combine the water, sugar and lemonade mix in a saucepan over medium heat, just until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool.

Blend strawberries until smooth.

Pour cooled simply syrup into strawberries and blend to combine.

Pour the mixture into a 9x13 baking dish and place in the freezer.

After about 30 minutes, ice will begin to form around the edges. Using a fork, scrape the ice crystals toward the center of the pan.

Repeat every 20-30 minutes for the next 3-4 hours, or until the entire mixture is frozen and "crumbly" texture.


(You'll want to store leftovers in an airtight container -if you have any!)

Thursday, August 12, 2010

I Am Not a Food Photographer

I would love to be, but it's going to take a lot more work on my part. Not to mention a regular blogging schedule. Some of the blogs I follow have certain days when they post about certain topics. Maybe that would help me be more "regular." (LOL, I make myself laugh!) I'm not a food photog, but I *really* like food, and I love to cook. Therefore, one - or more - of my days will definitely be devoted to what's going on in my kitchen.

For your viewing pleasure today is what we had for dinner last night. For starters, I created a salad of cucumbers, grape tomatoes, queso fresco and balsamic vinaigrette. Queso fresco is a Mexican cheese, commonly found crumbled atop salads, or used to stuff chiles and quesadillas. It's mild flavor makes it possibly the most common cheese used across Mexico.

The main course was my mom's famous stuffed shells. I cheat a little on the sauce, and start with a large can of Prego flavored with meat. To that, I add 2 lbs of cooked ground beef, a can of diced tomatoes, and a small can of tomato paste. Allow that to simmer for at least an hour. While simmering, you can start on the filling.

For the filling, combine 16 oz of Ricotta cheese, 16 oz of cottage cheese, 2 cups of shredded mozzarella, and two eggs. Season to taste and refrigerate for at least an hour. During this time, you can boil and cool the jumbo shells.

You are now ready to combine everything. Fill each of the cooled shells with a large scoop of the filling. Place in a large casserole dish without crowding, seams up. Cover with plenty of sauce. Cover with foil and bake for an hour. Allow to cool at least 10 minutes before serving. They'll be HOT!

Finally, for dessert we had one of my favorites - Sopapilla Cheesecake! Another southern favorite, it's super easy to make and makes a great impression.

Begin by lining the bottom of a baking pan with one (8 oz) tube of crescent rolls. Next, you'll want to add the filling. Combine 16 oz of cream cheese with one cup of sugar and 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract. Place over the bottom layer of crescent rolls. Next, take a second tube of rolls and line atop the filling layer. Finally, melt 1 cup of butter and spread over the top. Combine a cup of sugar and 1 tablespoon of cinnamon. Spread on top of the butter layer and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.