Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Play Ball!!!

Tomorrow officially starts Yankee season. Err, baseball season. There are technically six games tomorrow, but do you honestly know who is playing besides the Yankees? I didn't think so. Isa's not even a huge baseball fan, but she came home today and told me how excited she was as she walked by them setting up the tents outside the Stadium.

I'll be working all day, and since the game's at 1:05, the entire crowd will be gone by the time I come home, but it's still exciting!!

If you haven't been by the Stadium in a while, or seen what they're doing across the street where Old Yankee Stadium stood and Heritage Field is now taking shape, watch the video below. It contains pictures and video over the past year of the Stadium demolition and the creation of Heritage Field, with my thoughts about the whole thing too.

Let me know what you think.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

We Like to Eat: Tongan Pancakes

I’m not really sure where this name came from. I learned it on my mission in California. It was a recipe passed around the mission until it ultimately found its way into my kitchen. And the people who taught me didn’t know where the name came from either. And now, neither do you. But it doesn’t matter. A rose by any other name would smell as sweet, right?

What you need:
Ramen (chicken flavor is the best)
1 egg
BBQ sauce

So here we go. Boil some water. Scramble the egg. Mix the flavoring into the egg.

Drop the Ramen into the boiling water but do not break it up. Let it sit for about 30 seconds and flip it over. Another 30 seconds or so (no longer than a minute total) and take it out. Move it to a frying pan on medium-high heat and open the noodles so they make a rectangle. Pour the egg up and down the center of the whole thing.

Let it cook and then flip it over. You may have to push the egg back into the noodles if they start running. While it’s cooking, grab a plate and put two slices of bread on it. Once the egg is completely cooked on both sides, lay the noodles flat over the two slices of bread. Add barbeque sauce.

Close it and eat it.

So good.

I have yet to meet anybody who doesn’t like this. It’s simple, fast, and yummy. Let me know what you think in the comments.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Introducing Brisa

In a world full of TomKats and Brangelinas, it really is too much to say "Brian and Isa." And since we are constantly together, we decided that we need to shorten it. So now, we're "Brisa."

It also made tagging my posts easier. Speaking of, I went back and tagged all of my posts and put up a tag cloud over there on the left. It's fun. So if you want to find posts about random stuff we've done together, click "Adventures."

And there's another one for all our travel blogs.

And I put a search up on the top right so you can find anything you want (if you want).

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Wicked the Musical

I've been meaning to see this for years, but I refuse to pay full-price for tickets to any Broadway show. I always do student-rush or TKTS or find some local deal or something. Wicked has a lottery before every performance, where they pick 20 or so people at random, who can then purchase orchestra level seats for $26.50. I figured that, as a local, I can keep trying to win the lottery and eventually I'd win. I'm pretty optimistic, and even after losing 15 to 20 times straight (seriously, I'm not exaggerating there - I've been trying for years now), I still figured I'd win eventually.

Three years ago, Isa gave me two tickets to Wicked for my birthday, but not really. She drew the two tickets on a piece of paper because I was still traveling frequently and she wasn't sure when we'd be able to go. I talked her out of spending that much, but told her when we finally win the lottery, she can pay.

We've tried and tried but have yet to win the lottery.

But finally, tickets went on sale through Isa's school, and she bought amazing orchestra level seats for just $25 a pop. And we went last night. Woohoo!!!

My expectations were higher for this show than for any other production I've ever been to. People have been raving about Wicked for years. "Best show on Broadway!" "Unbelievable!!" And my good friend Hayley, after seeing it for the first time, flew back home to Utah and immediately bought tickets (and another roundtrip flight across the country) to see it again a few weeks later. Could such a musical actually live up to that kind of hype? I knew all the songs - sung by Idina Menzel and Kristin Chenoweth and the rest of the originals - could the current actors possibly be that good? I had built it up so much in my mind, that I really thought there was no way it could live up to my expectations.

It blew me away.

As much as it pains me to say that Les Miserables is no longer my favorite musical, that Elphaba can out-sing Eponine, or that "Defying Gravity" is more powerful than "Empty Chairs and Empty Tables," I can't deny it. Wicked really was that amazing. The only thing it didn't have was little Cozette singing "Castle on a Cloud" to break your heart. But Wicked, besides being emotionally powerful and packed with ridiculously awesome and catchy songs, had something that Les Mis lacked: humor. Wicked was hysterical. Glinda's character almost had me in tears from laughing so hard. And it was so well written, how it ties everything together and explains and puts a back-story on all the "OZ" characters, from the scarecrow to the wizard. I just LOVED the story, from start to finish.

And although you don't need me to say it, if you haven't seen it already, GO. You'll love it.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

She Said Yes!!!

I know, this is a little late and most of you know she said yes (probably because you know we got married over a year ago). But I finally got around to editing all the footage of my proposal. Some of the footage (mostly the photos, but also the video of us on the horse-drawn carriage) are from the actual date of the proposal. Most of the video is from our reenactments. We went out several different times to get all the needed shots. We tried hard to keep the continuity, but Isa cut her hair and one time we went out it was freezing, so Isa has a scarf in some shots. But I think it turned out great! Here is the finished product:

A few days later, we found a contest to enter it in. I had to shorten it to 3 minutes and change the lyrics so I didn't infringe on Jason Mraz's copyrights, so here is our entry to the Pop the Question competition (to win a two-week honeymoon in Thailand!!!):

Pop the Question Proposal Competition - Brian and Isa Ciccotelli

Thanks for watching! Hope you enjoyed it! :)

New York Update

It's been three months since I last updated this blog. Crazy. But I'm back now and I promise to post a little more frequently now that things have fallen into a little more routine.

What? Routine? Brian? What? Yeah.

I'm working 9 to 5, baby! Yeah, commuting (all the way from the Bronx, but whatever) into New York City to work as a medical accounts billing specialist. At least I think that's my official title. I'm at my dad's company (he's the comptroller, or head financial guy for the company) - CancerCare. It's a great job in a great company - really chill atmosphere and great coworkers. It's not completely permanent (as in I won't be here in New York forever) but I hope to keep the job for at least a year or so. Here's a picture of me working. :)

Yeah, I have an office on the 22nd floor with a SWEET view of midtown:

That's Bank of America Tower in the middle, and the Empire State building to the right.

Isa is back in school and she's doing very well. She's so studious and creative and everything she makes and designs for her classes just astounds me. I know I'm easy to entertain and I'm a little biased at everything she does, but seriously. She's really good. You can check out some of her creations here. (She also created and coded that website from scratch. Yeah, I know. She's awesome.)

And since we've decided that we'll be staying here in New York for a while (for at least another year and a half until she finishes school), we've decided to make our apartment a little cozier.

We bought couches!! And they're so comfortable. And I have to plug Cort Furniture, because we got both the couch and the chair for $299. Yeah, how ridiculous is that? It's used, because normally they rent them out, but they get reupholstered and fixed up and stuff before they sell them. Awesome deal!

Ok, that's it for now. Hope you have a great day!


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