Archive for the ‘Prattle(ish)’ Category

Alright, time to end the radio silence.  I’ve been trying to get all this wedding stuff together.  Did you know that some places think their space is worth $7,000 a night?!  Well, they do.  I always heard that weddings were expensive but I had no idea just how expensive.  We finally found a place that’s semi-affordable luckily.  Then I moved on to finding a wedding photographer… yikes!  They want just as much for the photos as our venue, food and wine combined.  WTF!  I’m thinking about changing my career path.

On a brighter, more economical note, my first attempt at growing cucumbers has been a success!  Cleo (the cucumber plant) had 3 plump little cukes growing until somebody nabbed one of them, but the other two were delicious.  I think I left them on the vine a little too long however as all the other growth on the plant was dieing, but everything is coming back to life now.

I love the little curly q’s these things do.  I never really thought much about growing things but it’s so much fun.  It’s exciting every day to go downstairs and see what’s new or bigger or greener.

Timmy the tomato is also doing well.  It was a little touch and go for awhile, I didn’t think he was going to survive.  In fact, I had already declared him dead and then one day I looked over and little yellow flowers were blossoming all over the place.  I have 6 baby green tomatoes on the vine right now, and loads more yellow blossoms!

I also had some basil growing, twice in fact.  Twice it died too.  I’ve thought about getting another plant but after killing two I’m a little skeptic.

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Anybody ever feel like there’s a little demon in Microsoft Word?  He likes to sneer at me with his menacing cursor.  blink.  blink.  blink.  I know what he’s thinking… he’s thinking I’m a little loony that’s what! =)

Oh… I don’t really have anything to say here.  Well, I’m sure I could think of lots of things to say but I’m not really sure they’d be, um, well received by all.  One of these days I’ll get over that fear of hurting people’s feelings and learn how to write what comes to me.  One day, but this is not that day.

Basically I’m procrastinating right now, and those of you that perhaps meandered your way over here are benefiting from it, or perhaps wishing I wasn’t wasting your time.   It’s all the same.

School’s back in full swing.  This time I’m also working so I’m starting to get the feel of what this whole “not getting any sleep/ coffee overloaded” college life is supposed to be like.  I like it though.  I like being busy.  I find that the more time I have at my disposal the more time I end up disposing.  Though, as evidenced by this blog posting, I’m still finding time to throw away. =)

So last year I wanted to run the Portland Marathon.  That, however, did not come to pass.  This year I’m making some plans though; going to step it up a notch.  I’m not promising myself the marathon yet, but I am definitely going to put two feet and 12.3 miles towards it.  Actually, I’m planning on running at least an 8k, a 10k , and a half marathon this year.  I think if I survive those I’ll be gung-ho for the big one in October.   Plus there’s about 5 months between the last race and the marathon so I should be plenty rested.  If anyone has any marathon training tips feel free to send them my way.  There’s a lot of running events in Portland so if you’re interested in running something here you don’t really have an excuse not to.  Here’s some links to some of Portland’s events:

In other news, I’m about 27 minutes away from my 2 year anniversary.  2 years ago, after a long week of attempting to go out in a new city which I barely knew, I woke up one morning, after smoking at least 2 packs of cigarettes the night before, hating myself.  Hangovers get worse as you get older, but they are also far worse if you’ve been sucking in smoke all night (so if you quit smoking you can drink more, wink wink).  January 12th, 2008 I told the Marlboro Man to hit the road and I’m quit proud to say that he never came back.  I was going to make myself a little cupcake with a cigarette decorated on top of it to celebrate but time hasn’t allowed for such extravagances.

Later this week I’ll also be celebrating being 1 year closer to 30.  Ugh… I just recently figured out I was an adult, and now I’m an adult closing in on 30 with a couple of grays hairs and a few fine lines.  Mi dispiace.  =(  It’s not really that bad I guess.  I just figured I’d be in some total other place in my life by this time.  It’s ok that I’m not of course (in that other place, which would have likely involved a white picket fence and a yard that I’m happy to not have to maintain), but self-reflection puts a lot of things in perspective and what better time to reflect than when you’re turning the dial another notch.  I’m just thinking it’s time to get things done.  I tend to plan things for far out in the future, but it seems the future is catching up with me.

Ok, I think the rambling should now come to a close.  Sorry to leave you hanging if you were expecting something more, or something profound.  Hope you’ve enjoyed this evening’s edition of absolutely nothing.  I’ll see ya later (said in a New Yorkish accent, like Grace from Will and Grace).

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So it’s November. Time for people to start consuming more food than would typically be considered normal in the name of “The Holidays.” Football is plaguing every channel, the leaves are changing and cluttering the ground, and all those evil retailers out there are trying to sell you a bunch of worthless crap that your relatives will be ever so thankful for just before they sell it on Craigslist.

This time of the year always stresses me out. The holidays are supposed to be about community and family, getting together with friends and being thankful for what you have and that Bush is no longer the President. But every year the plane tickets get more expensive, the price of Barbie dolls increases, and my checking account never seems to follow suite with these trends. Every year my Scrooge of a demeanor gets reinforced and my belief that Christmas is only still celebrated because it’s an economic stimulus package becomes stronger. Why can’t we just say screw the overpriced gifts and the high fructose corn syrup infused food that makes you lethargic and suicidal and just get together and drink some wine and forget about all the useless rubbish that pervades every street corner, store window and television channel? How about, for a change, instead of buying toys that will likely give your children lead poisoning or sneakers made by poor, underpaid, overworked 11 year olds in musty sweatshops that we put our money where it’s needed? Millions of people go hungry every day, and just as many children likely see December pass them by without so much as a lump of coal in their stockings. This is just an idea but maybe if you’re considering buying 10 presents for your child you can instead buy 2 presents for your child and give 8 other children a Christmas this year. There are charitable organizations in almost every city in America – it doesn’t take much to help out somebody in need.IMG_2212

Alright, soapbox has been put away. So last night was Halloween. Those of you that were lucky, or perhaps unlucky, enough to be at Doug Fir in Portland got to see less costume than was probably expected; nothing like a little Halloween stripping to reel in the holiday season!  Aside from seeing more boob than I really wanted to last night was pretty fun.  For lack of time and money I ended up bein a little farm girl, though I think a trip back to the south is in order as I had a hard time pulling my Arkansas accent together.  Maybe Santa will bring me a rental car this year so I can brush up on my drawl.

Well, enough diddle daddlin, I have essays to write.  Happy fall to everyone!

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I don’t necessarily have an answer for this but I’m curious to know what you think.  And I’m not talking about a skirt that’s simply above the knees, I’m talking about skirts that make sitting down a modern miracle.

So, why do you think girls wear short skirts?

I guess I should be more correct; women also wear short skirts.  Don’t be confused by my usage of the word “girl.”  Why to females wear short skirts?

10/22/09:  Ok. Well, nobody seems to have anything to say, which is fine. I asked this question because lately I’ve seen lots of girls around campus wearing some remarkably short skirts, and it’s not even warm outside. One day I was sitting in class and this chick walked in with a super short skirt and sunglasses so large they about swallowed her face. It struck a funny chord inside this brain of mine, which turned it into a freewrite, which is morphing it into some sort of essay. I was just curious what other people thought about this short skirt syndrome as I feel it’s a part of a bigger picture.

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So I, um, haven’t written anything in, um, about two weeks.  Whoops!  In my defense I had to move two weekends ago, in [3-4 consecutive days of] 100+ degree heat (without air conditioning at either apartment).  During said move my couch got maimed by a rogue nail sticking ever so slightly out of our narrowly cornered stairwell.  [Insert sad face here]100_0979

Anyway, a few days after the move I had visitors in town, so I had to play tour guide (follow the flower).

On top of this ever so hectic schedule I am still taking my Italian classes.  I really like the language and am thoroughly enjoying learning it, but 8 weeks of 3 hour, 4 days a week classes have  my brain running on about 2.37 cylinders (hence my lack of creative blogging energy).  So here I am, on August 14th, not having written anything since July.

Aside from attempting to memorize the 5.83 thousand verb tenses of the Italian language I’ve been doing a fair bit of baking lately.  I stumbled upon the focacciaGluten-Free Goddess one night after a fleeting thought left me feeling like I consume too much gluten.  I successfully baked her gluten free focaccia bread and some miniature (because I had to use a muffin pan for lack of ability to locate English muffin rings) English muffins.  Both were pretty darn tasty.  I also tried to make these vanilla brownie things but they were, um, difficult to eat.  Perhaps it was an operator error but they seemed to have too much margarine in them and hence had a tendency to crumble upon EnglishMuffincontact with one’s fingers.  Secondly they were a bit over the brown sugar top.  In spite of these 2 inconveniences they did taste fairly yummy (probably because of all the margarine), I’ll just be modifying them next time I attempt the gluten-free.

I also tried to make these gluten-free buckwheat wraps.  This little adventure in the kitchen ended with me almost tossing the bowl of batter out the hobbit window of my 2nd story kitchen.  I don’t know what in the world I did wrong but these little buggars won’t be making an appearance in my kitchen again.  I know I’ve only been cooking for about a year and a half but I’ve never had something go so horribly wrong as these did.  We almost didn’t have dinner that night as I was so distraught.  So, if you boldly go where no buckwheat has gone before I suggest you proceed with caution (and have a backup plan).

On a happier note I got to make cupcakes again last weekend.  Always look for a reason to make cupcakes!  My brother-in-law (who was visiting) evidently has a sweet tooth, which I was happy to oblige as I don’t bake sweets too IMG_1893often because I tend to eat most of what comes out of the oven.  You just can’t go wrong with oreo cupcakes; again from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World!  If you don’t own this cookbook you should be ashamed.

Today I went on a little walkabout to downtown (which is conveniently located just under 2 miles from the new hobbit house (which I will explain in a later blog)).  I had 4 objectives: to locate a silverware caddy small enough to fit into a drawer only 9 & 7/8 inches wide, a coffee tumbler that will keep my coffee hot for a couple hours, an oven thermometer because I’m convinced my oven has it out for me, and 2 mini spring form pans (for cake of course!).   Evidently only one manufacturer makes a caddy that small, and they are located out yonder by the airport so I struck out on objective 1.  I did procure a coffee tumbler, though I’m not convinced my coffee will be warm far into the day but at least I donated a dollar to the Global Fund.  I was able to track down a thermometer at Macy’s for only $9 (which I actually thought was a little high but whatever).  And last but not least I did NOT find my mini (under 9 inches) spring form pans.  Well, I could have found them at Williams Sonoma but of the few dollars that are in my bank account $24 of them cannot go solely to cake pans.  I did, however, find some MiniUpsideDownCakecute little oven safe ramekins at Ross; 4 for a total of $8.  Wahoo!  Now I can make personal desserts for all the guests we [don’t] entertain… I’ll just have to actually invite people over now I guess.  I went ahead and did a little test run on the ramekins though (and to also test out my backstabbing oven with the thermometer).  The result?  A blueberry upside down cake.  Yep, it was good.  And actually it wasn’t very bad for you.  Hardly any oil in it (leave the canola, take the applesauce) and no frostin’.

Ok, that’s about all I got.  Happy weekend to all!

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Does anyone else think it’s super creepy how the internet stalks you these days?  I go to a website in search of a kitchen cart.  Next thing I know half the ads I see everywhere are for that store.  I was recently looking for a new phone from Verizon – I’ve been seeing Verizon ads for a solid month now.  I looked (just once several weeks ago) at Godiva’s website trying to find nutrition information and I am STILL getting Godiva ads.  I perused the P90X website and now I get a plethora of “tricks to shrink belly fat,” “one rule to a flat stomach,” and more ads of the like, constantly.

Not only is it super flippin irritating seeing the same flippin ads every single day, but what the hell else are they doing with all this information?  You used to not be able to leave your house without somebody being able to know where you are and what you are doing.  Now you can’t even stay inside your house and retain any privacy.  I’m not doing anything super secret over here, but just wonder where the tailored internet marketing tactics will end.

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So I’ve been out of pocket for a few days it seems.  Ok, like 10 or 15 days.  I had a really important week of appointments in Hawaii, and one cannot blame me for not blogging during these really important appointments.  I had to meet with the beach a couple times, Senor Frog, and a few (too many) mai tais.  By the end of all these really hectic appointments I was so frazzled I was fighting thin air.

A few days ago I overcame a really crucial milestone in any vegan’s life – I made vegan mac and cheese.  AND IT WAS AWESOME!  Maybe I just haven’t had mac and cheese in a long time, but I’ve been pretty disappointed with other vegan versions of it that I’ve tried previously so I was pretty stoked when this one came out tasting superb.

I also added some buffalo flavored tofu that I ALSO made myself.  Yeah, I rock.  Well, I guess the woman who originally created the recipe rocks, I’m just a cheap imitation.  I found the Flavorvegan blog the other day when searching for buffalo tofu recipes.  Check her out sometime.  I’ve only tried the two recipes previously mentioned here but they were spectacular, though I would recommend adding some cayenne to the buffalo sauce – it wasn’t quite spicy enough for my liking (but my taste buds apparently don’t work as well as most peoples’).

Yesterday I attempted to make espresso cheesecake.  Instead I got “weak cup of coffee” cheesecake.  My sole source for the espresso flavor was espresso itself, which evidently was not enough.  I’m assuming you need coffee flavoring or some kind of coffee liqueur to make the taste strong enough.  On top of the weak taste my chocolate chips seemed to huddle together in certain spots and thus were not proportionally placed espressocheesecakethroughout the cheesecake.  Some days you should just stay out of the kitchen I guess. The base recipe for this cheesecake is definitely a keeper however, just make sure you know what you’re doing when you try to modify it.  I always use this recipe or this one when I attempt to make vegan cheesecake.

I did make a shortbread crust which I got from this lovely lady.  I usually sub applesauce for oil when I bake to decrease the fat content in whatever it is that I’m baking.  I’ve never tried doing this with vegan butter before.  Well, it appears to have worked, though I can’t attest to what it would have tasted like if I had made it with all butter.  I made a mini cheesecake in a rectangular pan so the crust is up around all the sides, in case you noticed that in the picture.

Lets see, what else can I prattle on about….  I recently became the owner of a brand new set of P90X workout DVD’s.  I also, coincidentally, became the owner of some sore muscles.  I’m not normally one for workout DVD’s as I usually get bored 5 minutes into it and turn it off.  I bought some pilates DVD’s years ago and just a month or so ago finally removed the shrink wrap from all the discs.  P90X is different though.  There’s 12 different workouts and they are far from boring.  Most of the workouts are about an hour long but the time flies by before you know it.  These things retail for about $120, but I would recommend perusing Craigslist or Ebay to find them cheaper (that’s what I did as my money tree is not fairing very well at the moment).  If you actually do the straight 90 day workout plan they suggest make sure you eat right and don’t over-strain yourself.  The DVD package comes with a workout plan and nutrition guide, so read it before you dive right into 90 days of intense workouts.

Ok, I think that does it.  I need to go study for mio corso d’italiano.  Arrivederci!

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