Monday, February 28, 2011

Fresh Eats

I love baking, but I've never been much of a cook.  I figure it's time to start filling my recipe box with more than brownie, cookie and bread recipes.  Unfortunately, woman can't live on carbs and sweets alone.  I'm also trying to be more conscious about eating more fresh foods and less processed foods.  Out with the granola bars and crackers, in with the fruits and veggies!

So far I've done pretty well with my cooking resolution...

I've started making homemade hummus on a regular basis.

I made homemade pesto with pinenuts and walnuts

Then used it for a pesto pasta salad with shrimp

I cooked chicken cordon bleu for my home community group a couple weeks ago
And last night I made Cajun Gumbo with fresh veggies

I love using recipes that are tried and true - I get most of them from my sisters or from friend's cooking blogs.  So if you have some favorite recipes, pass them along!  Bon app├ętit!

Somewhat Celeb Sighting
On a completely unrelated note: Saturday afternoon, I was in the downtown Macy's browsing around.  A couple of the shoe clerks who were helping me mentioned that they had just seen an NBA basketball player and were a little star struck.  I brushed it off and continued my shopping.  As I hopped on the escalator, I heard a man say, "Yeah, we're just in town from Atlanta for the weekend."  I turned around real quick and blatantly stared at a 6' 9" guy... who saw me staring and said, "Hey, short stuff.  How you doing?"  Caught off guard and awkwardly ascending away from him on an escalator, I stammered, "Hi, I'm good. How are you?"  He kind of laughed and thankfully I was quickly out of sight and on the second floor.  Since it wasn't really an indepth, meaningful conversation I didn't catch his name - but I think it was either Joe Johnson or Marvin Williams.  So if you ever want tickets to an Atlanta Hawks game, "short stuff" over here has got the hook up!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

A Year Later at Meadows

Exactly one year ago today, I broke my wrist snowboarding at Mount Hood Meadows Ski Resort. I've only been snowboarding once since that fateful day and I decided that I needed to get back up there on this 1 year anniversary to show the mountain who's boss (or at least just make nice to the monster that put me in a full-arm cast for 10 weeks).

So Alan, his coworker Pat and I headed up to Meadows for an afternoon on the slopes.  I still had plenty of falls (its going to be pretty dreadful sitting on my sore tailbone tomorrow) and there were definitely times when I wanted to chop down some trees, build a fire and burn my board today, but at the end of the day I gained a little extra confidence and am looking forward to a few more days of boarding before the season is over.
Alan and I with our sweet boards
a crowded day on the mountain

on the lift... headed into the unknown
my biggest accomplishment today: not once did I eat it getting off the chair lift!

video
Alan flying down the mountain like a pro

video
me creeping down the mountain like a beginner
warning: the beginning of this video may make you dizzy... yes Alan is videoing this while snowboarding. impressive.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

RG Featured in Waco Today

If you haven't already seen the February issue of Waco Today, check it out (click below)... the McCalls and Restoration Gateway are the feature story!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

2 Year Anniversary in Portland

Today is my two year Portland anniversary. Who would have thought I would still be here settling into this odd but wonderful city? Two years ago I would have told you I would only be in Portland for 7 months. A year ago I would have told you I would probably only be here one more year. Now when people ask me how long I think I’ll live here, I simply say “I honestly don’t know, but why leave something that’s so good?” I still miss my family and friends in Texas every day, but the longer I am in Portland the more I love it and accept it as my home (at least for now).

After reading through some old blog posts and my post on this day last year, I realized how much I am continuing to grow year after year. If I was to describe this past year in one word it would be this: faith.

Within the last year I have discovered:
- you can plan your life, but 90% of the time things don’t go as you planned
- you should wear wrist guards when snowboarding
- you can do anything you put your mind to, even running 26.2 miles
- a little bit of encouragement can go a long way
- how to live in the moment
- giving visitors “Mary’s Portland Tour” never gets old
- spontaneity makes life more exciting
- I'm no longer weirded out or surprised by the weirdness of Portland
- how flat Texas really is in comparison to the Oregon terrain
- my Texas accent is never going away and it apparently gets stronger when I talk about Texas
- you can eat at a different Portland restaurant every night and never run out of options
- the power of prayer