Monday, September 29, 2008

One More Month! AHHHH!!!

One month from today my first grad school app is due!!! AHHHH!! It's rapidly becoming crunch time!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Happy 90th Birthday Grandpa!

Today is my Grandpa's 90th birthday!

It's absolutely unfathomable to believe that someone can possibly be that old (don't tell him I said so). It's totally awesome, just not one of those things that you can accurately grasp, kind of like $1B (how much is that REALLY anyway?).

Anyway, I had a lovely dinner at Mission Ranch in Carmel with my parents, my Grandpa, and my aunt and uncle. Grandpa really enjoyed it and had a great time. Oh and he's going to keep celebrating all year because we got him a subscription to the cookie of the month club so each month he'll be getting another tasty and delectable cookie flavor to try.

Happy Birthday Grandpa! I can't wait for the 100th birthday celebration in another 10 years.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Beard Papas and Fresh Fruit Tart!

I want to start off by thanking Ryan and Tara sincerely for bringing dessert last night. They really could have shown up with anything random that happened to look like dessert and I would have appreciated it. Instead, they showed up with really yummy Beard Papas and a tasty fresh fruit tart with grapes and strawberries on it.

The Beard Papas were in the usual vanilla and chocolate flavors, but they also brought some of their specialty flavor of the night which was strawberry. They were all awesome. For those of you sitting here wondering what a Beard Papa is, it's a delectable cream puff that's filled with a very tasty custard-like cream. They pre-bake the pastry puffs and then fill them as you order them so they're very fresh.
Here's a photo of the dessert night crew enjoying the cream puffs.

I love a good fruit tart. This one was a bit surprising. The inside of the crust was lined with a thin layer of chocolate and the outside of the crust was sprinkled with granulated sugar. It created a very tasty bottom. I would have liked to just eat the crust I think, but then I would have missed out on the rest of the amazing tart. The custard was just sweet enough to make sure that it didn't detract from the fruit and the sweetness of the grapes and strawberries rounded out the flavor.

All in all, it was a very tasty evening! Thanks again to Ryan and Tara for helping me out. Stay tuned for next week's tasty treat.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Forte Foundation MBA Fair

After my first experience at a full blown MBA fair last weekend, I really didn't have many expectations for the Forte Foundation's MBA fair on Tuesday night at the Westin St Francis in downtown SF. I was pleasantly surprised. They had all of the top schools that I was interested in all in one room, great food for those of us who hadn't been home to snag some dinner yet and a really informative presentation.

I got to wander through the ballroom and talk to Admissions staff from Haas, Wharton, Chicago GSB, Fuqua, Kellogg, Sloan and even some more local colleges like Mills and USF. It was great talking to all of the admissions staff and some alumni that they had on hand. I picked up a ton of literature that I will have to read through at some point soon and start plotting my plan of attack.

The presentation that I was able to attend (I missed the second one because of dessert night) was a great reminder of why I think I need/want to go to business school. They had a pannel of 5 women who had all gone to business school for a variety of reasons at a variety of times in their lives, including one who just graduated in May. It was a great reminder how people in all sorts of different places in life and industries can all benefit from a business school education.

All in all, it was a really well put together event that even included prizes (no, I didn't win any sadly). I'm really glad that I attended this event and I really should have just gone to this one instead of the other MBA fair that I went to last weekend.

Way to go Forte!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Dessert Night's First Field Trip

This week, dessert night went on it's first field trip to the new gourmet yogurt store in downtown San Mateo called Yogurtouille.

It was a small group of devoted dessert night goers, but we enjoyed the tasty yogurt. Gingerbread was one of the more popular flavors. I tried the Mounds flavor which was rather sweet and very chocolatey. J tried the tart mango flavor which was like lightly flavored plain yogurt with some mango flavor.

I highly recommend a trip to Yogurtouille if you haven't been yet. It wasn't expensive and got some great tasting yogurt that's even better for you than ice cream.

Monday, September 15, 2008

My First MBA Fair

This past weekend I attended my first MBA fair of this application season. It was put on by the MBA tour and had probably 25-30 schools in attendance. I was a bit disappointed with the organization of the event.

The event was from 8:30-5 and the schedule for the fair wasn't previously available so I showed up at 12:30 thinking that I would be able to wander around the fair for a few hours and talk to the schools I was interested in and then duck back out. This was not the case. The "fair" part where each school had a table in a ball room didn't start until 3pm and until then there were 45 min presentations from the various schools in attendance. The two or three schools that I was really excited to check out had already presented that morning. If I had known this, I would have gotten to the fair sooner.

All in all, not a bad fair experience and I'll know better for my next MBA fair on Tuesday put on by the Forte Foundation.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Chocolate Amaretto Bundt Cake

Recently, I've been making a lot of cookies or other smaller and less dense desserts and it's been a while since we've had a good basic cake. I decided that this week needed to be the week for that cake. Bundt cakes are some of my favorite because they don't have frosting which is a plus since I believe that good cakes don't require frosting and in fact can make the cake taste worse if there is frosting.

Break or Bake recently appeared in my Google Reader with this recipe. I remembered somewhere deep in the caverns of my brain that J loves the flavor of amaretto which is nice since I have to avoid so many recipes because of his dislike of citrus flavored baked goods.

This recipe is really easy, but it has reminded me yet again how much I really would benefit from a mixer. It would be one of those kitchen appliances that would join a select number that constantly take up the small space available on my counter top. The mixer would live right next to the only other appliance that currently hangs out on my counter which is my tea pot. However, I'm not yet willing to make that $300 commitment that would get my the brushed steel KitchenAid mixer of my dreams. In the meantime, J's grandma's hand mixer comes in VERY handy on a weekly basis.

I really thought that this was one of my best desserts. The cake turned out really moist and very flavorful. Neither the chocolate or the amaretto flavor was too overwhelming which was nice.

If you'd like to make your own Chocolate Amaretto Bundt Cake, please go here. I will add pictures of this lovely cake care of Neena and Candace as soon as I receive them from them.

Friday, September 12, 2008


In light of MixMatchMusic's latest accomplishments at Demofall in San Diego. I decided that they needed a little treat to celebrate their major award, DEMOgod. What better way to celebrate them and get out my recent desires for creative pursuits than to make a MixMatchCake!

First off, I have to admit that I totally cheated and used cake mix and pre-made frosting. I did this because I really wanted to decorate the cake and not spend hours making both cake and frosting from scratch. Besides, cake mix always tastes great.

The first challenge of this endeavor was how to make grey frosting for the cake. Luckily, Safeway now carries black food coloring. This was a pleasant surprise because I figured I was going to be making black out of red, yellow, green, and blue food coloring. A possible, but challenging escapade. When you mix enough black food coloring into the frosting to turn it the dark grey of MixMatch's logo, it starts to lose it's sturdy consistency and get more liquidy. This made frosting the cake (or rather getting the frosting to stick where you put it) rather challenging. I can't really offer any pearls of wisdom for getting this to work except persistance! It will go where you want it to eventually.

Here's what it looks like after the first frosting...

To decorate the cake, I used toothpicks, a spatula, butter knife, and a nifty reusable plastic pastry bag and tips that I also found at Safeway. I drew all of the white outlines and white shapes with the pastry bag and then used the toothpicks and knives to spread out the frosting inside, kind of like outlining the shape in the coloring book and then filling it in.

Here's what it looks like after the addition of the MixMatchMan...

After I finished all of the frosting...

I plotted to figure out how to bring this to a restaurant. ChuThis suggested that I go to Whole Foods and see if they'd give me a pastry box. They gave me both a pastry box and one of the gold cardboard thingy's to put under the cake. I had to very precariously transfer the cake from the plate to the cardboard, but luckily all went well. Here's the finished look.

Monday, September 8, 2008

MixMatchMusic Launches at Demo!

Congratulations to J and everyone else at MixMatchMusic for their big launch at Demo today!!!

The press around you guys and the launch so far is wonderful! Check out what CNET and Wired have to say. I can't wait to start framing some of these articles when they come out in the print editions!

Even if you're not a musician, you should check out their site and play around and make some music. It's really fun and easy.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Wakeboarding and Courtney's Wedding

This Labor Day weekend was a busy one. Not unusual for me lately, but definitely even busier than planned. I had planned to split time between Courtney's wedding in Monterey/Carmel and wakeboarding with J and his friend's grandma's house in Rio Vista.

I headed down to Monterey bright and early on Friday morning to take my car in for service and go to my annual dermatologist appointment. Then after some family drama, I got into the wedding spirit and went to Courtney's bridal shower. It was a really fun event and it was great to see a bunch of the girls that I hadn't seen since Courtney's 21st birthday three years ago and meet some new girls as well.

After the bridal shower and some hanging out, I headed up to Rio Vista to meet up with J and our friends up there. Sunday was the day of wakeboarding that was totally awesome. I actually got to stand up for a good bit which was definitely fun. I can't wait to start again next summer.

The fun in the sun time was officially over and J and I headed back to Monterey to get ready for Courtney's wedding. The wedding was held at the Church in the Forest at Robert Louis Stevenson School. It was a relatively simple affair with lots of small children participating in the wedding ceremony. After the ceremony, J remembered that he had a friend from high school who worked at RLS so we headed down to their new student center to see if we could find her. We did find her as all of the faculty and staff were at an event for the new freshman and their families that had just moved in the day before.

The reception was at Mission Ranch in Carmel. It was a beautiful day, 70 degrees with no fog in sight which makes every Carmel venue just a bit more beautiful. We enjoyed champagne on the terrace watching the sheep wander through the fields out back and enjoying the view of the beach. Dinner was pretty tasty and our table mates were a fun assortment of friends from golf and the DJ. It was funny hearing their stories of getting into trouble with the nuns at my high school. Next came the dancing and more champagne and cake. It was great fun dancing with J as usual.

After the bride and groom headed off to their honeymoon suite, the rest of us headed to the after party at one of the groomsman's apartments in Monterey. By that time, we were tired, hungry and tipsy so we didn't stay long, but it was a wonderful end to the evening.

All in all, it was a busy but mostly good long weekend. Check out the pictures on Facebook!

Cookies Galore Plus Strawberry Rhubarb Tartlettes

I was lazy this week. I'll be the first to admit it. With a VERY busy Labor Day weekend, I planned ahead and made a bunch of cookies last week and then reused them this week. If I had any self control, I wouldn't have put out all of the cookies and kept at least one flavor for this week. But I don't have any self control so we got to enjoy all of the cookies all over again.

My mom also snagged some really yummy Strawberry Rhubarb Tartlettes from the First Tee Open that they were working last week. Let me tell you, Pebble Beach Company makes amazing desserts. As usual, these tartlettes were really good. My dad also grabbed some really tasty frosted brownies that he's going to bring by later this week because I forgot them in the freezer at home. I'm sure we'll be enjoying these next week.

Here are some pics with the lovely bouquet that I got from Courtney's reception.

If you're looking for recipes for these cookies, please check out last week's post here.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

The MBA Application Season is in Full Swing!!

Yup, it's that time of year. MBA applications are starting to come out and this year's applicants are buckling down to study for their GMATs and get started on their applications.

It has been great fun living vicariously through this time when others have been going through this process previously and now it's my turn. It has been great fun reading the blogs and hearing from friends about their experiences in their first month of business school!
JulyDream, you've got it all under control and thanks for sharing all of your adventures and trials with us!

Recently, I've been buckling down on both my GMAT studying and my applications. I was pleased to see that I had improved almost 100 points from my first practice test to the one that I finished last weekend. This makes me feel a bit better about succeeding on the actual test and motivates me to study more. Thanks to ManhattanGMAT for the free online practice test and analysis!

Now, it's on to applications. Luckily a lot more business schools are accepting GRE scores, which I happen to have for my previous applications to Economics grad schools. I've started with all of that useless information (you know, your name, address, work history) and am starting to give some thought to those all important essays. Fortunately, I now have MS Word on my new mac just in time! Thanks J!

Along with all of the applications and studying, come the MBA fairs. San Francisco is a hotspot for all of these events. Here are some of the ones that I will be checking out in the next couple of weeks:
-Forte Foundation MBA Fair
-World MBA Fair
-The MBA Tour

It's going to be a busy application season, but if it means going to my dream school, then it's totally worth it!