One of the things I love about my newsroom is that the people are very accepting of other people, circumstances...and animals.
I had to bring in my dogs one day when I was filling in. My husband had planned for months to be out of town, but I was asked to fill-in on a weekend. What to do?! Bring in my girls, Minnie and Piper, of course.
I was really nervous because, well... they're big dogs. But, as most people found out, they're also big babies. They did bark at my co-worker Helen, but it was really a misunderstanding of her placement in the room. Sorry, Helen.
Other than that, they didn't poop anywhere and they didn't bark during the newscasts. I think that's a win-win! If I could, I'd bring them in everyday, but I think once is enough.
Four years ago one of my dearest friends married another one of my dearest friends. When they got engaged and made a phone call to me, I thought they were going to ask me to be in their wedding.
Instead, my friends Amanda and Eric asked me to officiate their wedding. Pastor Li at your service!
I married them near Los Angeles with their family and a few of our closest friends from college. It was such a beautiful wedding.
That was a really exciting couple of years. Now everyone's got babies and are settling down. I love it and miss these knuckleheads all the time.
Also, for the record, I am still ordained!
I just have to take a moment to say, "Booyah!!!!!"
I have no more student loans. That being said, I am not debt free. Buying 3 homes in six years and traveling around this country for my wonderful journalism escapades have landed me in Dave Ramsey territory. But, let's celebrate the small things for now! (Do I get a bonus point for still using my degree?)
Have you paid off your student loans?!
And just think, I got it paid off before I REALLY look like this >>>> (thanks, Oldify app!)
I had a blast seeing some of you at Madison Magazine's Top Shelf Summer Taste party! It was an event showcasing some of the best food and drinks of the summer season.
The magazine will put out official pics later, but for now, you can see a few informal ones on channel3000.com.
In the meantime, I am ready to try to make one of the winning cocktails from the magazine's dueling mixologist competition! This one is from Kevin Kane and Mera Dorner from Plate and Barrel and it won the tastiest classic cocktail competition:
1/2 gallon Sacramento tomato juice
1 1/2 T worcestershire sauce
1 T Sriracha sauce
2 T fresh squeezed lime juice
1 T celery salt
1/2 T black pepper
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh salsa
1 T chopped horseradish
1 chopped garlic glove
1 oz. sliced jalapenos
1 12 oz. Scorpion Mezcal tequila
Garnish by skewering 1/2 organic boiled egg, 1/2 slice of bacon, and a couple jalapenos
We are becoming quite the weekend warriors. In the last 8 weeks, we've flown from Los Angeles to Miami, Indianapolis and St. Louis. We've had visitors from all over and in a couple of weeks we'll be headed to St. Paul!
But let's recap St. Louis.
We just went to the Show-Me state to help our little niece Parker celebrate her 2nd birthday. It was a cowgirl-themed party with pony rides and everything!
I love the fact that we bought her a toy gun and she nearly shot her eye out. <MAJOR EXAGGERATION> Actually, it was a toy gun that shot little whirly gigs into the air-- they were like circle thingys that shot in the sky and floated down. But after Miss Parker aimed the gun at her head and whacked herself in the cheekbone, she was a little gun-shy. She wasn't hurt at all, just a little stunned.
Anyway, if you're headed to St. Louis with the kiddos, a great to-do is the Saint Louis Science Center. We loved going to the planetarium and seeing the stars. We learned a lot about constellations, space ... and even things like light pollution. Parker would say, "See the shtars!"
One of the most fun pictures you'll ever take will happen at the Science Center. Seriously, it's so fun to stand in front of the green screen, and the pictures are only $5. Actually, the first pic is around $11, but then every other picture is only $5 and you can do as many pics and poses as you'd like.
On a side note, driving through Wisconsin is very pretty - we hit a few storms along the way but it was still picturesque. The one thing that was crazy -- the humidity difference between Missouri and Wisconsin. Holy moly. We love Wisconsin in the summer and we've decided there's pretty much no better place to be! (Remind us that in February.)
Can't wait for next weekend! Where should we go next?
I had to stop at Walgreens on the way into work to grab some cough medicine. And, I spotted the new Lays chips on sale. They had cappuccino and wasabi ginger chips left... so here's what happened:
Madison Magazine has a great event coming up and I have a couple of tickets to give away!
In case you didn't know, I write the monthly Sip and Savor feature - it's short and sweet and fun. Because of that, I often get a chance to go to some fun events around Madison.
Today, I have two extra tickets to the magazine's Top Shelf Summer Taste event on August 25th.
Read more for details
It's not a formal giveaway, so don't get too technical on me. I just want to see you at the party! I've got two tickets valued at $70, which allows you to sample food and drink from a ton of local folks. It is the summer's best cocktails and treats!
So... what can you do? I'd love it if you tweeted me and Madison Magazine -- tell us the thing you'd like to try! Follow and tweet us at @michellelitv and @Madison_Mag! I'll draw by the end of Thursday and someone can pick up the tickets Friday-Monday here at the station.
Thanks guys! Have fun and see you at the party!
Here are some of the participants:
45th Parallel Distillery
Gluten-Free Beer Handcrafted One Barrel at a Time in Madison
Belaya Rus Vodka
Dashelito's Hot Sauces & Spicy Foods
Artisan Cheese from Wisconsin
Mad Maiden Shrub:
Full Strength Drinking Vinegar from Wisconsin Orchards
Mad Urban Bees
Urban Honey on a Wheat Cracker with Brie Cheese & Raspberry Puree
Mason's on Main
Premiere Hand-Rolled Sushi
Huge Assortment of Delectable Appetizers
NessAlla Kombucha & Old Sugar Distillery
Custom Made Sausages with Gourmet Toppings
True Coffee Roasters
The Wise at HotelRED
Prosciutto and Melon Skewers with Goat Cheese, Mint,
Espelette Pepper and Honey
Yahara Bay Distillers
I loved the Kimchi Chronicles on PBS. Remember?
Well, now Marja Vongerichten is back! She is doing a web series right now via the Awesome Groove Online Magazine.
I love this webisode because she gives us a great tip for making rice. I actually do it a little differently thanks to my sister, but I liked Marja's explanation.
Also, she made umma paste. I have never made this before, but I am definitely going to now! BTW, 'umma' is the word for momma. LOL
We are so lucky to have two new journalists at WISC-TV. First up, Leah Linscheid:
Leah was my roomie in Texas for the Final Four... and as Susan Siman said today, "We're getting the band back together!"
Read more about Leah and Matthew
Also, I love working with Matthew Simon. I feel like we've been just missing each other for years - He worked in Missouri when I worked in Missouri. He worked in North Carolina when I worked in North Carolina. We literally were only a part by a few miles. We also have several mutual friends!
Crazy fact: His mother's name is Susan. So, she's Susan Simon. Our wonderful anchor Susan Siman has a son named Matthew. *Mind blown*
WATCH Matthew's welcome
This is Matthew and I right after my ice bucket challenge! I almost called on him to be the next one since he's a newbie to our newrsoom, but I bit my tongue.
I've been working so hard lately that I actually missed Shark Week... but I thought I'd share some pics anyway from my recent trip to the Keys with my family and my new fishing buddy, Peter Miller.
Obviously, we caught some fish.
I got real close to this goliath grouper... and I caught a lemon shark. I was so freaked out that I could only muster one word when I was trying to pull it to the boat. You'll see it if you catch Bass2Billfish when the episode airs in a few months!
Thanks to Peter Miller, Capt. Rich Smith, and all the Bass2Billfish and REC Media crew. I loved every minute of it!
I may look kind of like a nummy, but I grew up fishing on lakes with my dad and grandpa. I just loved growing up thinking I was one of the guys... my dad really raised me to be a little dirtball -- guess that's his way of dealing with having an only girl-child.
I love Wisconsin. Nothing more American than a Wisconsin summer. And cheese. And beer. And football. And Midwest life. But, I SURE DO miss the ocean!! Spending some time in Florida was just what the doctor ordered. I'm ready to go back!! At least for another fishing trip.