Tomorrow is the first day of June and, true to form, Texas will be rolling out its notorious summer heat this coming week. For some people that means hanging out poolside with a Corona forever at their lips, but for me, it means three to four months of hibernating in the shelter of my air conditioned house with the blinds closed tight.
Summer ain’t my thing. I’m just more of a fall/winter kind of gal. I can literally feel my dopamine levels rising when the sky clouds over—and if there’s rain or snow involved, I’m completely ecstatic. But I do manage to find ways to have all kinds of fun indoors during the warmer months. Here are a few of the things I’ve been enjoying during these initial dog days . . .
1. My brand new Kitchenaid stand mixer!
If you’d told me five or ten years ago that I’d one day be the sort of girl who goes bonkers over kitchen appliances, I’d have told you to get your head examined. But I have indeed become that sort of girl, and I was over the moon with gratitude when my amazing mother-in-law gave me a Kitchenaid stand mixer for my husband’s and my anniversary last week. I’ve been wanting one for quite some time now and I’m so excited about all the foodie shenanigans I’ll be able to get into now.
I tried it out for the first time last night. I’ve made this Bobby Flay recipe for chocolate mousse at least a dozen times before. It’s not difficult, but it’s always taken me the better part of an hour to whip the cream and the egg whites with a hand mixer. Not so with my new Kitchenaid. The cream was whipped to perfection in less than two minutes, and the egg whites came out lighter and fluffier than I’ve ever been able to get them before. Now that I’ve got the Mercedes of kitchen appliances, I’m hoping to try my hand at macarons in the near future.
My husband and I had one of the best meals of our lives at Saint-Emilion in Ft. Worth last night. We were supposed to have dinner with our neighbors but something came up at the last minute and they were unable to go. But they insisted that we go on without them and take advantage of the reservation. The service, food, and wine list were impeccable, and the charm and ambiance had my inner Francophile positively swooning. An entire post dedicated to our experience is coming shortly . . .
3. The Wolf of Wall Street
I’m still trying to catch up on all of this year’s Oscar movies. This week I finally got around to watching The Wolf of Wall Street and I regret not watching it sooner because I think it’s my favorite of the Oscar nominees I’ve seen so far (I’m only lacking Her and Gravity). It’s just as raunchy and debauched as I suspected it would be, and I loved the moments of far-fetched humor, such as Jonah Hill’s outrageous teeth and the scene in which Jordan Belfort has no recollection of wrecking his Ferrari. Good stuff.
4. Backyard chickens
My husband has been working on our chicken coop for several months, and we finally installed seven new residents this week. Our neighbors gave us four babies (pictured above), and we also got three fully grown Bantams who are already laying eggs for us. As a vegetarian, I feel a little bad about eating store-bought eggs because I know that even “free-range” chickens don’t have a great life (I put “free-range” in quotation marks because, in the poultry industry, the term is used quite loosely and it unfortunately doesn’t mean the chickens are free to roam grassy meadows in the sunshine all day). So I love having eggs from our very own chickens that we can personally feed and properly take care of. Many more posts on our backyard chickens to come.
As much as I decry summertime, even I can’t resist the lure of a sunny beach vacation, so I’m elated that we booked a trip to Cozumel this week. We’ll be going for three nights at the end of the month, and I’m very much looking forward to sitting under a thatched-roof cabana with a thick book and a little Sex on the Beach. We went to Playa del Carmen last year and I’m confident this trip will be more of the same.
Cheers to the beginning of a fun-filled, air-conditioned summer!