verbicide: (Default)
How can it already be almost 2PM? It's my day off--today should go SLOW.

We got back late last night. The trip was mixed--good parts, bad parts, exasperating parts. Nothing too brutal, though. Jeff was as fabulous as expected. He had a great time and I was frankly relieved that I managed to contain my sulk. My family loved him and he fit in pretty perfectly. (Down to joining us for the daily morning dogpile and swinging my nephews around.)

Jeff made the excruciating bearable, but holy crap were we giddy about coming home. The flight back was surreal. )

Also, it turns out that Jeff is a giant baby about having his ass kicked at Scrabble. I think the score when we stopped (because we were landing) was 300 to 100 and boy did he not like that. I took endless shit when the OFFICIAL SCRABBLE DICTIONARY was okay with "quin" and Jeff... was not. OMG there was endless ENDLESS abuse. Apparently Jeff's Scrabble vocabulary is limited to proper nouns and dirty words. It was wildly entertaining. Even if it means he hates me now. Muhahahahaa!!

SeaTac Alaska Baggage Claim is the slowest, lamest service on earth. We waited forever and ever. Then waited for our shuttle. We were so giddy when we finally got into my car. LA had slow roasted us all weekend. It was disgusting. Seattle's cool air was a blessed relief. We got home around 1AM, but neither one of us was tired. We made some scrabbled eggs with red bells, Italian parsley, smoked mozzarella, and green onions and had it with the last of the wheat toast. It was such fucking nirvana sitting on the couches with Brutus (KITTY) who purred and purred with us. We watched The Soup and then an episode of The Daily Show where we seriously nearly threw up laughing at Jon Stewart's riff on James Carvell. Which, holy Christ. We were nearly hysterical. (Jeff: "Two found dead at home with strange abdominal injuries.") We were laughing so hard we heard like half of it. We couldn't stop laughing until the end of the episode when Jeff made me rewind it --which just the act of rewinding it made us cackle. God. We both went to bed and lay there snickering for another half hour.

Sleep was the most exciting thing ever. At home. In a glorious full-sized bed. AND SLEEPING-IN OMG I LOVE YOU UNIVERSE CAN I PLEASE FRENCH KISS YOU?

I hope everyone had a great weekend!

bleargh

Jul. 19th, 2008 10:12 am
verbicide: (Default)
Forgot to post this from yesterday!

Somewhat unexpectedly, my boss asked if I could go to the Edward Tufte lecture in Seattle today as she couldn't attend. And it was really pretty good. He's a funny and engaging speaker and while parts of his presentation were very cool, I think if you're doing a lecture on visual presentation, you should have more exciting visuals than telling people to open to page x in your books. I would have liked to have seen more comparative visuals.

"This? This sucks. See, this is why. And now let's look at the same data presented in a good way."

The visuals in his book were cool, but he would go off on these life-sucking tangents sometimes.

What was really nice was that my friend Kirsten was also attending, so we met up beforehand for coffee and basically did the whole thing together, including lunch at Dahlia Lounge. So that part was exceptionally nice as going to these things alone makes me a mite twitchy.

So, good lecture and a nice set of books (that my office undoubtedly owns) and a day away from the daily grind of the office.

Then, I had to tear up to Wallingford because my dad had sent me a package and because the post office lady asked him, he agreed to send it insured. All I knew was that there were lemons from his tree and he was worried about them spoiling. I left the conference at 4:30, figuring the post office closes at 6 and how could that be hard, right? However, Ii got stuck in the most life-sucking traffic of all time. It was fairly dreadful. I was wiped out from a day-long lecture and the fatigue of baking the night before. I seriously thought I was going to have a babyfit right there. But miracles of miracles, I made it. I made it to the post office in the nick of time and lugged the package home.

Inside? Yes, lemons. But also? A new digital camera. Mine was pretty old at this point and my dad got me a shiny new Sony 10.1 megapixel camera with a gig memory card. For no reason other than he wanted to. Isn't that freaking nice? He loves gadgets and I think once he knew my camera was dated, he couldn't take it anymore. I know--could I be more spoiled?? I can't wait to take new food pix with it!

um, omfg

Jun. 12th, 2008 02:53 pm
verbicide: (yay!!)
GOING TO HAWAII!!!!!!

My cousin K and I both need a vacation and we both need one sort of soon and ...so we're going to Kaua'i this August. Five days of sunshine and snorkeling and seafood.

I sort of can't believe it, except we just bought the airline tickets.

It's a pretty low-budget trip because I have a $50 Companion Ticket on Alaska, and she's going to fly up here because it still makes it much cheaper. We're also staying at a super cheap place, which I know is fine because I've stayed there before. (Amy--we're going to stay at the Kaua'i Sands!)

*hop* *hop* *hop*

YAWN

May. 19th, 2008 10:19 am
verbicide: (Default)
I couldn't go to sleep last night!

I'm not sure if it's the lighter, longer evenings, or if that Cherry Coke Zero at 4pm was a mistake, or what. But I tossed and turned half the night and still woke up an hour before the alarm (to pee!).

And that worked out nicely, because my alarm failed. No idea why.

Sarah's back, so Henry will be leaving today*. I'll miss the little fluffball. We had a grand time yesterday pouncing around. But I would recommend that if you have a plate of toast with sticky marmalade, do not attempt to pick up a frisky kitten with an enormous plume of a tail. Because he will beaver-slap that tail right down on your marmalade and then knock it off the plate, upside down on your dining room floor. And you will be so horrified that you'll just freeze with an open mouth in a silent scream.

Ahem.

What else, what else. I am sporting a nice little sunburn on my upper right arm which itches like mad and hurts when I scratch it.

There is a horrible stench in our hallway. It smells like water damage, so that's freaky. It's not coming from my place, but I've written the board because it really should be investigated. But I think no one wants to deal with it, because no one is responding. The only one who bothered to respond is the dude who is working in Sweden for a few weeks and he sent his girlfriend over to make sure his house hadn't exploded in his absence. (It's not his place, either.)

* Oh, oh. Sarah says I can keep Henry another two nights while she works her butt off studying. Sad for her, happy for me. I love Henry. He's so freaking adorable.

Everyone is totally wiped out and sleepy this morning. At least next weekend's a long weekend. Extra long for me because I'm taking Friday off in honor of my cousin K's visit.

I'm going to have a few friends over on Sunday and I'm trying to decide if I have the energy to make Jeff's cake request that weekend. He wants me to do a raspberry curd version of the orange cake. So that's a three day process I would have to start before Kiran gets here on Thursday night. So, we'll see. I know *exactly* how I want to decorate it, which tends to make me a little obsessive. Hee.

Okay. Must attempt work.
verbicide: (i love me)
This is often the spot where I get into trouble. I've been hyperproductive and I run a little bit out of fuel and want to stop mid-project.

I'm so close to being finished. SO CLOSE. And I have to get the stuff that's in the car to Goodwill today or my dad's luggage will have no room to sit. And if I'm going to do that, I may as well deal with the rest of the bedroom closet because there are bound to be things in there for Goodwill, too.

The carpet cleaner just left. The place looks pretty damn perfect. I have everything sorted except one messy giant plastic container in the bedroom closet. That and one bookshelf. Must. Keep. GOING.

Yesterday I did all kinds of tidying up. I met the wonderful Amy T. for lunch. She is so freaking nice. I always feel so spoiled by her. We went to B&O Espresso for lunch, which was fantastic. After I dropped her off at work, I drove to Dere Auto and had them give my car an overdue oil change, fix the wiper blades, and replace a brake light. Then I drove to Queen Anne and got my eyebrows waxed. Ouch, but worth it.

And then I came home and took a break. I'd started organizing things when Pete came over and we went to the Kebab House for dinner. It was great catching up with Pete who's been in New Jersey for the past few weeks.

It was a late night, and then an early morning. The carpet guy came at 8AM and I mostly tried to stay out of his way. I got the top shelf in the bedroom closet done that way, which was exciting. I also feel like I have early onset Alzheimer's because I found this really sweet card, signed with long, touching messages by a number of people and I had no idea who any of them were. As I read all the messages, I finally figured out that it was from this place I'd once worked as a call center receptionist for three months, and apparently after I left, they mailed me a card. I have no memory of any of them except this one crazy lesbian who kept dating men and insisted on telling me all the details of her sexploits.

I have to go grocery shopping today. Jeff's coming over for dinner (squee!) and I need groceries. I also need to finish using all those Meyer lemons and make some more curd. (No idea where this curd-making frenzy has come from, but it must stop!) I want to make my dad this cranberry shortbread he loved. And I need to figure out what to make for dinner for Friday night, because OB and Em and Zach are coming over to have dinner with us. I also need to figure out what to do with my dad for 45 minutes on Friday while I have my legs waxed (courtesy of a gift certificate from Ellen). I should have scheduled that appointment last week, dammit.

I also have these three disposable cameras from eleven hundred years ago. No idea what's on them. (And am a bit afeared.) But I am going to take them to be developed. So weird. Thank god for digital cameras. I hate that I can't just see what's on them. Maybe I'll drop these off today, too.

Okay. Enough procrastination. Must deal with bedroom closet finale! *whipcrack*
verbicide: (girltalk)
It's amazing how much better everything feels with a clean head of hair. My hair is so excited to not be icky and flatted down by a fleece cap, it's curling and whirling every which way on my head.

Needing some cheer today. So going to see Enchanted (again) with Sarah. Then we're going to make chicken parmigiana at her house with my batch of Ronny's Marinara (Jeff's wonderful mom's recipe).

Sarah's so nice. I made some comment today about wanting so much to steal Henry because he had to be mine, and she said, "Well, he is partly yours." That's a good friend.

Tomorrow I plan on continuing my work with the closets. I'm glad to have gotten so much done so far. Must see when/if Jeff is available with his big manly truck to haul the doors away. Though I keep forgetting, I need to put them on craigslist to see if someone wants them for free. In fact, I should do that right now.

I really like how the bedroom looks without the doors. It's like this giant walk-in closet. I can see everything, everything's spaced out nicely. Very functional. Jeff approves, too.

My dad is coming out for a visit on Thursday night. He's been so sweet. He knows how much Hobbes meant to me, and I can tell that it hurts him to not be close enough to offer comfort. It'll be so good to have him here. It'll be Zach's first birthday and he'll get to attend that. I still need to pick out a birthday present, though. What to get for the perfect 1-year-old? (Probably a LOT of books.)

Um. I think that's all I've got. Have a good Saturday, everyone!
verbicide: (I love my damn cat)
It's just been such a nice weekend! My month off has gotten off to a great start.

Detailed Weekend Blather! )
verbicide: (crazyface)
Don't worry, there are no spoilers here. In fact, no comments about the book's contents at all.

It's just kind of funny, you see. I've known this book is coming out for a long time now. At first I was resolved to reread the previous six books. But as time passed, and I was busy, or otherwise occupied, it became quite apparent that I wasn't going to have enough time.

As July 21 approached, I started bargaining with myself. Maybe I'll just read from book four on. After all, I've read the first three books about a hundred times. I told myself that I didn't have to read the new book right away. I could savor it. I could save it. In fact, I could read all six books and then eventually get to book 7.

I think it was two nights ago that I pulled up book 4, read three pages, and immediately put it back in my bookshelf and pulled out book 5. Lather, rinse, repeat. Then I thought I could at least read the last couple of chapters of book 6. I sort of did that. But I couldn't help it, and hauled open book 7.

It's really kind of exciting. (Duh.) I used my recent bout of insomnia to my advantage, and stayed up too late reading. It was glorious.

I have a packed day today. I'm finishing laundry. I need to do dishes. I still need to clean and prep my farmers market fare. I need to make nine parfait cups, and drive over to Ellen's house by 11. I'd like to see my nephew today. And I've got to make that sour cherry pie. And pesto! And then a lovely afternoon/evening with Sarah. When am I going to read? It's all I want to do now!

In a way, it's good. I rushed through the last book, gulping it down in huge swallows, and subsequently didn't enjoy the experience at all. I'm anxious about spoilers, but hopefully will be able to avoid them, and maybe finish the book in the next week.

It's going to make it very hard to read my book club book (Assassination Vacation) in time for Thursday's meeting. The one benefit that book has over Harry Potter, it's not too heavy for me to carry on the bus!

Off to make parfaits! Have a good Sunday!
verbicide: (hobbsie love)

  • One of the nice things about my trip to LA was the boxing up and shipping of my remaining books. Especially since getting the new bookshelves in, I've been champing at the bit for them.
  • I spent tonight unpacking the 4 (out of 5) boxes that have arrived. One more box to come, hopefully tomorrow. I can't wait to have a free weekend to categorize them on the shelves properly.
  • I love LibraryThing. And I love the joy that is ISBN.
  • Ellen threw Judy a Tiki-themed co-ed baby shower, and did a fantastic job. TPTB were so impressed, they held back the rain until after the party was over and we were cleaning up.
  • I can't wait for that kid to pop out. He's going to be so totally awesome.
  • I finally saw Sarah after a terrible three-week separation. With both of us constantly in and out of town and random schedule nightmares, it's been insane. Sunday was gloriously spent LotRing.
  • Jeff had a quick trip to Oregon and stopped at Powells and bought me this wonderful book about wandering in Paris. And also, he keeps me sane.
  • Pete and I saw Paris Je T'aime (wonderful) and Knocked Up (cute and sweet and gross) and Ocean's 13 (franchise fluffy fun), but I'm ready for some serious Pixar awesomeness with Ratataouille.
  • I've never used a self-cleaning oven before, and today was my maiden voyage. The fumes were terrifying, but then it was over and my oven is now absurdly clean
  • With the nice weather and light evenings, I've started taking the bus again and it's been really wonderful. Both the mile I end up walking and the not dealing with traffic/construction.
  • My new nephew, Zach, continues to thrive and is AMAZING. The weekly visits are just not enough. He's a smiley, happy, delightful baby and I love him
  • Work has calmed down since last month's insanity, and it's both welcome and enjoyable. I really like the project I'm working on now.
  • Hobbsie continues in good health and 7AM-whiny-ness


I think that covers all the bases... friends, work, kitty, family, books.

Holy crap, it's late. Must go to sleep now.

wheeeee!

May. 2nd, 2007 10:11 pm
verbicide: (Default)
It has been the best few days, with my cousin Mo visiting.

Details, Details )

In other potentially exciting news, we are really moving forward with getting a manager for our building. I'm hoping that next month will be the last that I have do so much work for this place!

I'm dying to see the new Nathan Fillion movie (Waitress) because he is hot and the movie seems quirky.

So much to look forward to this summer!

- new Harry Potter book!
- new Harry Potter movie!
- new Pixar movie!
- new Spiderman movie!

and at the end of the summer:

HAWAII! (still not over it)
verbicide: (Default)
I am never allowed to buy the Kasugai orange gummy things again ever. Because omg they are so good and I can eat about a million an' a half of 'em.

Weekend was jam-packed with all kinds of coolness. Sarah and I built shelves and reorg'd the office (turning it into a library, purrrrr) and I must post pictures of the gloriousness of them. We also opened up the new Dell and it's very, very shiny.

I spent half the weekend chucking old computer manuals (for products I no longer have, but have carted around for about ten years), shredding outdated bills and bank things, and unpacking boxes and boxes of crap that were buried in the office closet. No more! It's so liberating! My place is still a bit of a mess right now, but it's going to be so much better than it was with all thtat random crap gone!

Saturday, Sarah and I grabbed some breakfast and did all kinds of random shopping at U Village. I finally found the type of olive oil bottle I wanted (tall, square, glass) and some new placemats.

Eventually it was back to the house to unpack and toss mountains of archaic stuff.

Later that night I went to play with Zach, most adorable baby ever! He's getting so big, it's hard to remember when he was just 4.9lbs now that he's over 12lbs! I will share photos soon! Eventually I made my way over to Jeff's to petsit since he was visiting friends out on the peninsula.

Sunday, Pete and I went to see the godawful A Perfect Stranger. I know --of course it sucked, but I thought it would at least be semi-okay. But Halle Berry can NOT act, no matter how hot she is.

We then just hung out and did random things like grocery shop, go to the comic book store, and hang out chez moi while I did some kitchen cleaning.

I did find that I couldn't sleep at all last night. Just inexplicably. So this morning was very NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO and burying my head under the covers, but I think I will survive.

It's a particularly crazy week ahead. I'm in this weird holding pattern at work because at the end of the day Friday, I'd sent out all my stuff for technical review to various developers, and now just need to wait. Hrm.

Tonight is the annual condo meeting, which I am very irritated to have to attend. Tomorrow is the woodworking class that Jeff and I are taking. Wednesday night a friend is visiting from out of town. Thursday I get to hang out with Sarah. Friday is a party at my former boss's boss's house for a second round of goodbye. I want to squeeze in some time with my nephew on Saturday and I'm forgetting, but there is something else going on Saturday. And Sunday is John's birthday.

Life seems to be going on normally, and then somehow --it warps into turbo drive and everything seems overscheduled and frantic. No likee. Especially because I want to go home and unpack and organize the office even more! Boo!

My cousin is coming for a visit the following weekend, and the day after she leaves, my parents arrive for a visit, and the weekend after that another friend is visiting. I think it's going to be June before there's time for a breather!

Sarah and I were supposed to plan our Hawaii trip on Saturday, but never got around to it. I can't freaking wait for September!
verbicide: (Default)
When your trip starts with a free upgrade to first class, you know it's going to be a good trip.
Details )
verbicide: (I love my damn cat)
Every Sunday I am surprised that it is Sunday. If only it weren't for those five pesky days in between my weekends.

However, I can't complain, because it's been a really nice weekend.

Sacked out on Friday night with leftovers and video game. Much needed relief. Though, continue to be retarded, and drink diet pepsi at midnight, resulting in severe inability to actually fall asleep.

Saturday, I took the bus downtown to meet Pete for crumpets at the market. So. GOOD. We walked over the Meridian and watched the delightful Music and Lyrics By, or as we referred to it, Pop! I will leave the cinematic reviews to my betters, but we had a blast. I loved all the cheesy froth when it was the 80s and it continues to be nostalgic joy for me. I love Drew Barrymore, and god help me, I love Hugh Grant. He's funny and totally shameless. It wasn't critically brilliant or anything, but so damn fun. After weeks of watching depressing Oscar contenders, it was much needed fluff. After the movie, we walked back to the market for gumbo at the cajun place on 1st. There was more wandering around and ice cream getting and then it was the end of the day and time to head home.

I'd just made it home when Jeff called. He's been in the middle of a crazy kitchen re-model and his weekends are often confined to peering at tile samples. However, Chris had an evening tennis match, so Jeff called me for an impromptu dinner. And even though I was already in my pajamas and on the couch, I agreed to bestow my company upon him. It is because I am such a good friend that I can do these things for him. Hee. So he came to pick me up and we ran through a list of our usual haunts and decided to branch out. We went to the Bar and Grill at Greenlake and caught up (from the eternity of time that was Friday evening). And then! I was able to pin him to the couch and forced him to watch Aladdin, which is one of the movies on my "OMFG Why Haven't You Seen This Yet?!" list for him. Happily, he enjoyed it. Eventually Jeff left and I went to bed shortly after.

I'd debated canceling my French lesson for this morning, because I'm just so ...out of ....something. Just not into it right now, and I don't know why. All I can think of is that it's been a stressful few weeks at work and I feel behind in everything that I want to do. I bought new glasses last year and I still haven't picked them up. I still need to get a WA driver's license. I need to hand-make 50 cards for my nephew's Welcome, Baby party. And let's not even start on the state of my bookshelves and closets and the trim that is still unpainted. Ack. I feel like a failure as a grown-up.

But, I went to my lesson because she's not here in the states for much longer and I love having our lessons in person. It was great to see her and per my request we went back a few steps to review the material I still haven't properly grasped. She continues to amaze me as an instructor.

After our lesson, I drove out to Whole Foods on 65th and bought a lot of very exciting produce. I stopped by OB's because I got him these mango bars from Whole Foods that I thought he'd really like --he loves mango and these bars taste like ...they just pureed the fruit and stuck it on a stick. I also got to see my nephew, SIL, and give Sammy the Wonder Dog some smooches. And then I made myself come home and face the music of a really messy flat. I've thoroughly cleaned the kitchen as of now, including the fridge and cupboards, and even mopped the floor. I've tidied up the dining room and living room. The next demon lies in the bedroom which is so messy I may have to cry, and an unfortunate pile of laundry. Though I should save my tears for the master bathroom, which I really need to clean.

But! I've promised myself if I do all my chores, I can make a fire, watch Sliding Doors, and have steak frites for dinner. Whee!
verbicide: (AHHH HAIR by breezybee)
As I told Sarah later, "I'm special. I don't have to go to the ER because my dad's a doctor." Unless, of course, my dad tells me I should go to the ER.

My first mistake, apparently, was waking up. I'm not sure what the hell happened between the time I tumbled into bed and the moment my alarm went off, but it included corneal abrasion. I woke up, there was searing pain. I lurched around, shocked by the pain, thinking that it was just an eyelash--because those fuckers can really hurt. But through the blurred vision and flood of tears, I sure as hell couldn't see anything in there. I tried to splash water into it, and stuttered my way through my phone-date with Didier (having canceled last week, I didn't want to cancel today), and then finally called to ask Sarah if she could bring over some eye drops because I was in a world of hurt. Meanwhile, I also called my dad.

My dad is an amazing doctor. I mean, really amazing. Over the past however many years I have lived away from home, especially during periods without medical insurance, he has diagnosed the weirdest things over the phone. He almost instantly knows what it is after hearing like three random symptoms, and both diagnoses and prescribes within minutes. He is always exactly right. Even when those symptoms could be one or three different things. I know he's been practicing medicine for over forty years, but I truly believe he has a gift.

Anyhow. So he told me exactly what it probably was and exactly what the ER doctor would do. He also didn't think I should let it lie until Monday. I called Jeff, who awesomely checked on our medical benefits and determined that going to the ER wouldn't actually beggar me for life.

So I've never been to the ER, and have a sort of tv-drama-oriented view of it. But Sarah has spent an unfortunate amount of time in them for various reasons and with various people, and was an excellent guide. It was largely uneventful (except for the major eye-owie). We checked in. We waited while people with more severe problems went ahead of me. (Which, honestly, as much as I hate waiting, I had no problem with.) Then nice people calmly asked me a few questions, took a few vital signs, and stuck me in a room. An angel of a nurse stopped by and asked more questions and was very soothing. Then awhile later the doctor stopped by. Everyone asked the same questions. I gave them the same answers. It was a very calm exchange where everyone very nicely acknowledged that eye pain hurts a fucking lot.

Then he gave me some blissful eye numbing drops, for which I will love him forever. He then poked around for awhile, saw nothing obvious lodged in there. Then threw some dye in there and looked at it under a microscope-thingy (his words, not mine). And apparently my eyeball glowed at him indicating some scratching, but happily not too deep. I wanted to steal his eye numbing drops, but was stopped by the warning of corneal degradation. He 'scribed me some antibiotic eyedrops and some Vicodin, which I find oddly hilarious.

Except for the pain, the hardest part was just waiting forever in-between each person. Sarah eventually got permission to come back with me, which was great. Then we got to leave. And thus ended my first ER experience. I even have one of those hospital bracelet-y things to show for it.

Weird, huh?

The only thing about the day that really pissed me off was that because of this damn thing, Sarah and I missed our chance to get our emissions test done (which in WA state has to be done at a state facility). We got there at 1:45 --and they close at 1. ARGH.

So, we went to get some lunch, pick up my prescriptions (which they only had the damn Vicodin and called in the order to another pharmacy). Sarah had plans for the later part of the afternoon and since I am totally fine, sent her off. I need to make my way over to an alternative pharmacy, but my brother called --they're in the area-- and when I told him what was going on, is kindly going to drive me to pick up the other prescription.

Sarah, btw, was phenomenal through the whole thing. I felt so very taken care of. I am damn lucky to have her. Because also, after the ER? Because there wasn't enough pain above the neck for me? I got hit with a migraine. I pounded some Advil, and definitely getting some food helped, too. But man --owie.

I'm supposed to see a movie tonight with Jeff and am hoping that if I am good and get some rest this afternoon --I can sit and enjoy Children of Men later, which I've wanted to see forever.

So I am going to go sit still for awhile. Hope everyone else's day has been good and not-ER-requiring.
verbicide: (Default)
I am awake and it's 2AM. On a worknight. Oops. Tomorrow is going to be HELL.

I'm happy to report that my SIL is out of the ICU! Baby Zach continues to be absurdly adorable and is developing in some ways even better than full-term babies. How's that for good news? My nephews are all prodigies, I'm not just biased!
Sarah and I had planned a pajama day of great sloth today, but first we did a round around Greenlake with Jeff so that we could feel guilt-less about it. The lake had all kinds of sections iced over. It was freaking cold out there, and Sarah read me a news report threatening more snow. Aaargh. Enough -- on with spring! At least it was a pretty blue day. This would all be much harder if it was bleak and grey.

Once home I started working on this crazy soup. Shredded beef with potatoes, served with a chimichurri dollop on the side. But it was taking decades, so we decided to make our dinner option for lunch. It was Matt's dad's flank steak marinade recipe, and it was spectacular. We had that with some asparagus and mashed potatoes. We never did eat the soup, since we did breakfast/lunch at 5PM. We were damn hungry by the time the steak was ready.

I also made fresh baguettes. My shaping's gotten much better, but I need to buy some vitamin C to dump into the flour. Apparently it helps with the differences between our flour and French flour.

And then we played a lot of Final Fantasy 12. Which was glorious. I really am enjoying it!

I called my neighbors and bowed out of tonight's condo board meeting, because it was at the same time that my brother had said I could come visit Emily in the hospital. I bought her four bunches of spring flowers and hauled some vases over to her room. She was so much better than the last time I saw her. She could sit up, eat solid food, and was just so much stronger than before. We're hoping she can head home at the end of the week.

The visit with Em was brief, and I returned to Sarah. We got to talking and pajama day turned into a slumber party, and she is sensibly asleep out there.

I have a French lesson tomorrow and I haven't done any homework or studying. I missed both of my Skype dates this weekend. I have loads of work coming at me this week. It's going to be a crazy week just trying to get on top of things!

So maybe I should sleep, eh?
verbicide: (Default)
I'm going to spend about $3M this winter on Java Logs. But at least I won't be destroying the environment as I enjoy my fireplace. Also, I'm not sure if this is weird, but it was really comforting to pull my shirt up and let the fire warm my back. Purrrrrr.

I decided to follow my brother to the hospital (so he wouldn't have to drive me back). The drive was mildly terrifying --I hate the ice. Hate!

But it was totally worth it to spend a few hours with OB, SIL, and zee nephew-to-be. Em's holding up pretty well, considering. They have them in a nice room, 1:1 nursing care, and even room service with terrific food. They still really don't know when baby Zach is going to emerge (isn't that a great name --love it!), but the longer he can hold on, the better. So, we'll see. I'm on baby alert for the next few days for sure.

The ice is pretty treacherous out there. I totally fell in the parking lot (just scraped my knee) and drove home as carefully as humanly possible.

Enough with the weather, goddammit!!! *tantrum* Not looking forward to tomorrow's drive to work, so may have to resort to a cab because I don't want to walk a mile in freezing temperature (or wait for buses that never show up). My lips are so damn chapped. My feet may never feel warm again. And waking up is hard to do when it's so glacial outside!!

I can't wait for spring.

On the positive side, time moves so fast, it'll be summer before we know it. (On the other side: aging at the speed of light.)
verbicide: (cold!)
First of all, I can't believe I didn't bring my laptop home. I will be seething about this for some time.

It snowed impressively here in Greenland. But I still wrapped myself up in 4500 layers and trundled down to the bus stop. And the bus drove past me. And then another was CENTRAL BASE. And then there was more waiting. And calling and whining to Jeff, who couldn't find any evidence that another bus would ever come. So I said, EFF THIS. I trundled back home (stopping at Safeway for firewood and soup) and am working from home. Jeff e-mailed me some documents I needed from his shiny network connection and I have Webmail. Yay for productivity.

Dear god it's cold out there. And sposed to get colder! Like in the teens. This is so not acceptable!! (Shut up everyone who lives someplace that is colder.)

So, now I am forced to stay home and curl up on the couch with a purring animal and a warm laptop.

Oh. Woe. Is. Me.

In other, and much more serious news: My SIL went into super early labor two nights ago. Like, 7 weeks early. They did their best to stop the contractions but it seemed like my nephew was just ready to come out. They transfered her to a hospital with a NICU and then, he apparently rolled over and went back to sleep. Happily he's fine, and mom is fine. I know it's not ideal for her to be trussed up in a bed just waiting, but they're hoping to keep him in utero as long as possible --maybe even a week. I can't believe he's coming out so soon, I haven't even finished knitting him booties or making him a quilt yet! I thought I had all kinds of time!

In any case, it was a terrifying start to the day yesterday and I was too afraid to do any Web research (because that way often lies hysteria). Jeff was wonderful. Without my asking, he did some Web research himself and when the information was found to be comforting, he shared it. Apparently while they will need to keep his preemie butt in the NICU for a week or so, kids are apparently born like 23 weeks early and still live to tell the tale.

I just want everything to be okay for them. They've had a rough few years, a miscarriage, and just general suckiness. Things need to be on the upward slope for them from now on.

God. I Just can't wait to meet him. He's going to be one beautiful baby because both my brother and my SIL are good looking people. And he is going to be LOVED. Oh, yes. (Jeff: "NO SMOTHERING!!")

My brother is going to come pick me up (because they're practically around the corner from me) so I can visit her in the hospital. It was really great to finally talk to her last night and hear that she's hanging in there.

If you can, please send them some good thoughts. They really deserve 'em.

denouement

Dec. 30th, 2006 11:57 pm
verbicide: (me and hobbsie)
I need a cooking icon.

Things I've learned tonight:

1. Roast duck, even when it turns out good, is probably not worth the effort and expense. That said, I'm glad I finally tried it.
2. I need to improve my caramel making skills and not be so afraid of turning up the heat on the stove.

The sour cream pastry dough was good, but as some of the reviewers in the recipe had noted, the cooking time leaves the apples a bit too soft. I think I want to try this again with some variation, because the flavors were good, it was just a matter of consistency.

The duck was crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside, but my god --so much smoke. And I don't have the room to keep 6 quarts of duck-fattened stock for the next time I want to roast a duck, so it's going to have to go to tragic waste. Next time I want duck, I'm just going to have to head over to Wild Ginger.

But both my brother and SIL were very gracious and good sports about letting me test my experimental cooking out on them. Next time: gyros with homemade flat bread and yogurt gelato!

In other awesome news, my brother and SIL got me a gorgeous Shun knife and sharpening steel. It's so utterly shiny. And, um. Sharp. Who knew you didn't need to put your back into slicing garlic. I've had crappy knives for a very, very long time. My brother, who clearly has his Y chromosome intact, earnestly told me that, "It's the same steel they use to make samurai swords!" (I think it's the same steel. Or method. Something.)

It was a really nice night hanging out with them. And nicer to know that they didn't have an hour drive/ferry to get back home. I think I've seen these guys more this month than I did for the past 3 years of living out here. (Or is it four now?)
verbicide: (me and hobbsie)
I'm really inspired by all the new cookware my friends have gotten me, and it's making me want to try more adventurous recipes. Of course I think roasting is pretty adventurous. Less room to screw up than with a curry.

My brother and SIL are coming over for dinner tonight, and I'm making my first roast duck (inspired by Ina Garten's show) with simple sides --sauteed spinach and mashed potatoes. I bought some rosemary rolls. Trying to get over the guilt of buying any bread product and feeling should make everything in bread machine, sometimes there isn't the time!

I'm also going to try to make a tarte tatin, we'll see how that goes. Also, homemade vanilla bean ice cream.

So, the ice cream liquid is chilling in the fridge, as is the dough for the tarte tatin. I couldn't find a fresh duck, so the frozen one's nearly thawed in some water. Potatoes are boiled, will make in advance and reheat later. Should go core and peel the 12,000 apples this tarte recipe calls for!
verbicide: (happy)
I have OB and Em coming over on Saturday to try my first attempt at duck (recipe courtesy of Ina Garten). I haven't decided what to serve with it yet, but am excited nonetheless. Probably sauteed spinach and a potato dish of some kind.

Next Saturday, I'm going to try some honest-to-goodness French cuisine. Sarah and Emily are coming over and I'm going to try to make: gougeres (which is cheating a little because I know I can easily make those), a very light green salad with lemon-y vinaigrette, coq au vin, assiette de fromage, and tarte tatin with homemade vanilla ice cream. Depending on how the baguette making adventure goes, there may be a fresh baguette that day, too.

I may do a test run of the tarte tatin for OB and Em, too. Want to make sure the skillet I have in mind is up to the task. (Not the new shiny that Sarah got me, because I can't let that get too hot.)

I just got off the phone with my SIL Em. I will be saying this for awhile, so my apologies for the repetition, but it is so freaking nice having them live so close. Anyhow, after all the roast turkey and stuff, I want some Paki food. So I called my mom and got her recipe for aloo gosht (a potato/beef curry) which both OB and Em also love, so I'm going to double the recipe and take them some. I can't believe that just a few months ago that would be been completely impossible (because Port Orchard is the opposite side of the universe). I'm also going to make some keema mutter and perhaps try my hand at naan. And because I'm feeling amitious, perhaps test out that crockpot recipe for kheer.

And also perhaps today will involve some Jeff-ness. If the weather continues to be horrendously crappy, we may not be able to do Greenlake as hoped, though. Meh. I might just do it anyway, because I need to get some fresh air. First, away to Safeway!

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