B(r)eads

Nov. 27th, 2013 01:11 pm
anagramofbrat: (ARBT logo)
I dragged out the breadmaker last night and cranked out three loaves of bread - one for us, two to take with us to NY. And I'm not done - some whole wheat and pumpkin are also planned. There might have been cackling and repeated exclamations of BAKE ALL THE BREADS while I did so.

Drew and I are heading down to NY with [livejournal.com profile] esotericscribe tomorrow. Prayer circle for us, lol.



9955 / 25840 beads. 58.56 rows. 38.526% done!




Can't see the forest for the trees. And the glare. Taking pictures of this thing is a right bitch.

Seeing as November ends on Sunday and this weekend is bound to be nuts I'm revising my goal count down a bit - from half done to 45%. I probably could bang out 18 more rows by Sunday, but I'd have time to do nothing else. 10 seems a bit more reasonable, though what will probably happen is I'll land somewhere in the middle. I'd be ok with that. Regardless, its still going MUCH faster than the Tetris one did - I didn't hit 39% on that until February. I mean I started it a couple weeks later in the year than this, but still I'm kinda boggled that I've managed to do in a wee bit under a month what took me twice as long last year. What a difference determination and a few improvements in technique make.

Anyway, time to fill my house with the smell of baking holiday stuff.
anagramofbrat: (winter holiday)
While looking at the calendar this week I realized to my horror that next Thursday is Thanksgiving. I... what? Already? Where the hell did the year go?

I'm generally not a fan of Holiday Creep, except for the fact that it allows me to buy Halloween stuff on clearance three days before Halloween. However I'm horrified by the prospect of Black Friday creeping into Thanksgiving day. Some people like having dinner with their families, you know. Not everyone, mind, but some people. I suppose my level of care is at best remote because I neither work in retail nor ever shop on Black Friday (prefer making humungous Amazon orders the monday afterwards, thank you), but that just seems wrong to me.

Still, there are things to be said about the upcoming holiday season, since it's apparently sooner than I thought and thus I can allow myself to enjoy it in a week. Nyaker's Pepparkakor is available again, for one. Talk about a ridiculously delicious way to get fat. Overabundances of pumpkin desserts, turkey and ham. Wow, I haven't made pumpkin bread once this year, I should fix that. The Hess trucks are out, even though I'm kind of underwhelmed by this year's. (Honestly, the remote control helicopters at 7-11 look like more fun, but me being a collector I'll probably acquire this year's truck at some point anyway.) And I do rather unabashedly love holiday music - though four notable exceptions to the usual holiday rotation should be noted:

"Baby, It's Cold Outside" - Because every girl wants some roofies and date rape for Christmas.

"Wonderful Christmastime" - This one is just stab-everyone levels of annoying.

"Mele Kalikimaka (the Hawaiian Christmas song)" - Cultural appropriation much? Also every version I've ever heard is just so SMARMY sounding!

"Christmas Shoes" - just... fuck you. Pretty shoes so your dying mama can look stylish in her casket? Hate to tell you kid, but they weld the bottom of the coffin shut before the service and don't bother putting shoes on the corpse anyway. YOUR HOLIDAY SENTIMENT IS WASTED.

But yeah, everything else? sure, bring it.

We have a tree this year too, though I got it on post-Christmas clearance last year, well before we brought home Monsieur Mangetout à Poil. I guess we'll see how he does. May have to soak a ghost pepper in water and spray it down before I plug it in.


In non holiday related news, I saw Dr. Tassoni today for the first time in over a year, fully expecting to get yelled at for letting that long of a gap exist between appointments. I instead got more of a guilt trip and an admonishment to consume more iron (yay chronic anemia). No change in meds for now. Whee blue horse pills. :P Also big ups to [livejournal.com profile] deliriumdeva for saving me after my PVTA fail today by running me to Florence and back and then later finding my misplaced wallet in her car. Oops, lol.

[livejournal.com profile] bloodandsmoke, [livejournal.com profile] thedavin and I met for a long delayed Drinktank, which I always do enjoy. I seriously need to sit down with the various pieces of Guardians and Gods scattered around my computer and stitch it more or less in order so I can see what I've got and what gaps need filling in. But the guys have been enjoying the bits I've brought in so far, so I'm encouraged. I'm also slightly less worried about how to get the plot to its next point, which I've been stuck on lately. Most of the bits I've been writing are still very much Introduce These Characters or These Settings and I've been feeling very much lately like I should be getting on with something, plot-wise. I feel like the guys gave me the outside permission to roll around in the world I'm building some more and not worry too much about plots going splode, though some hilarity may ensue with at least two characters and a stolen baby.

While I'm not doing NaNo, the counters work just as well for bead counts.

400 / 25500
(1.57%)

Not taking or posting pictures for a little bit because nothing interesting is happening yet - I'm 50 beads into row 3 and it's still just solid uniform yellow.There's not even enough in there yet to keep the thing from twisting up on itself into a strange U shape. It'll stiffen up the more rows get added. But yeah, it's slow going. I can't even think about this piece in terms of rows really - I'm mostly just taking it ten beads at a time and then breaking it up frequently to go do other things. This keeps me from getting overwhelmed by the sheer size of the project, and also since I've started to notice a little soreness in my left shoulder and wrist, heading off the repetitive stress injuries at the pass. Hopefully anyway. But yeah... this is going to take forever. Tentative goal is to be done by New Years. At least the next row I actually get into the actual pattern instead of solid blocks of color so that should liven it up some.

and now bed, since I have to get up, look pretty and drive down to Holyoke for office skill testing. Yeeeesh.
anagramofbrat: (green things)
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I love the local farmers market scene around here. (There is definitely a locavore "scene." It's a little hipstery and a little too full of people who say "gluten-free" a little too often, but the food is good so I put up with it.) It's gotten to the point where I'm enough of a regular at the Amherst one that some of the vendors know my face and ask how my veggies are doing.

The best thing I ever brought home from one is definitely the Kiss of Cassis black currant cordial from Bug Hill Farm. (you can order some online. I highly recommend you do.) Mix it with lemonade or honey tea and OMG. Even better if you swap out the lemon juice for some Mikes hard lemonade or lemon schnapps and you have something delicious and yummy.
anagramofbrat: (Default)
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Thankfully I've pretty much weaned myself off of fast food for the most part, though that just may be not living in McDonalds-on-every-damn-corner NYC anymore. Mostly it's too much like work to drive to one these days, lol. Yes, I'm mostly off fast food because I'm lazy, how silly is that.

Mostly off, I say. When I'm having a REALLY bad day I'll make the effort to go, in which case my choices are McDonalds, Burger King and Wendy's. McDonalds, my order is usually x amount of McNuggets (I love those things, I really do, its sick) and a vanilla shake, though it irks me that I have to loudly specify that I do not want whipped cream or a cherry in it; I am not a fan of McD's fancying up their shit. Burger King - whopper or whopper Jr, no onion, heavy pickle, fries, and also a vanilla shake, since theirs tend to be pretty good. Wendy's I'm not a huge fan of, but I will usually be very happy with a large salty fries and a chocolate Frosty on the occasions I go. To be eaten together of course. Their chicken nuggets are also quite with the tasty.

All that said, if they ever open a 5 Guys here closer than Westfield, I will be in a colossal amoungt
I will say, with the chronic tummy trouble and just being aware of how much crap I stuff down the hole, I'm quite happy with the small or value sizes of everything. After a certain amount it all gets rather gross, so I'd rather stop before that happens, you know? Also I do not have the digestion I did when I was 17. I was rather brutally reminded of this when Stanley ordered me a large root beer float from Sonic last weekend... they ain't playing, that thing was big enough to swim in.
anagramofbrat: (hawt)
Seems like my fears that my intestines would go back to their previous Andee-hating ways after recovering from that sinus THING a couple weeks back are mostly unfounded. I've been pretty much eating like a normal person for about a month now, and other than relatively low grade complaints? The guts are all "Food? huh. Okay, I can do this." Which is nice. And annoying?

Annoying?

Yes. You see, I've been picking at food for a little over a year before the beginning of the month because it hurt to eat. Any nutrition I got was because I'd force food down past a hyperactive gag reflex and knowing that in thirty minutes I'd be in crippling pain for having the audacity to EAT. Which is kinda necessary to survival. As a result, I kinda forgot how to eat like a normal person. You've seen me complain about this. I've been all FOOD! GIMME ALL OF IT! lately. Which is okay for now, but it's not a habit I want to solidify, cause that's not healthy either.

On the other hand? Eat like a damn fool for a month, and you're going to gain weight, which in my case is a good thing. I'm still pretty comfy in size 10 pants, but my 12s aren't sliding off unassisted anymore. My face looks reasonably normal again. My ring's still a little big, but it's getting better. And my boobs are filling back out, yay! Yes, the important things in life, I know, lol. But seriously, y'all, now I know that I'm severely unhappy if I can see my ribs.

So right now, here's where I'm at with regard to my body - I think I'd like to figure out some reasonable boundaries regarding my food intake, because while this period of total Haagen Dazs and mashed potatoes binging is kinda fun/liberating, again, not good habits to form long term. I'd like to get back up to 165-ish pounds and stay around there. And at some point i need to start exercising. I have a sleeveless wedding dress I need to look hot in.

But yeah, it's actually really nice being able to look in the mirror and actually recognize myself again. I'm supposed to be a bigger girl, damn it. I guess it took not being one anymore to really 100% accept that.
anagramofbrat: (whip my hair)
Little less exhausted now, lol.

I started yesterday morning by sending [livejournal.com profile] cell23 off to his 24 hour D&D adventure with the usual suspects at the Fortress of Atramoria, then finished up both my hair and the second season of Luther. Mmmm, Idris Elba... *drool* I am no longer unkempt; my hair is now shot with threads of a glorious cherry cola fire type dye lot, though this time it was definitely a case of the color being pretty over the yarn being easy to work with. Lighter, softer yarn = smaller twists = more time. Ow, my hands. I really need to just stick to worsted weight, no matter how pretty the color.

Yes, I took a picture. I don't particularly like it, but hey it was taken at 2am after a fun but exhausting night, bite me. (The one on my facebook is better.)



Dear gods, I have a giant forehead. I think actually that qualifies as a sixhead, actually. Really need to stop yanking my hair back in between yarn stages I think. Also, my actual hair has gotten all kinds of long. I usually don't tie off the yarn until a half inch or so after my actual hair stops when doing this, and so now the twisty parts of my hair fall a bit past the shoulders now. I still can't wrap my mind around the idea of my hair actually growing without snapping off into split end hell around my chin, but I'll take it.

As an aside, if anyone out there (and this better be all of you) is a Muppet fan? Even if, like me, you hate Elmo with the passion of a thousand fiery suns, check out the Kevin Clash documentary on netflix, Being Elmo. It's great. You may even cry.

After hurr was done, I met up with [livejournal.com profile] aersi for skirt shopping adventures, which were fairly short in the end because I found a perfectly fluttery, too-short skirt for burlesque at Goodwill, which was the first place we stopped. I found a more respectable work/interview skirt as well. I'm weirdly elated that from the waist down I'm still comfortably fitting into L sizes. There are limits as to how tiny I can get and still retain my sanity, plus I LIKE having a booty, thank you! After that we hit up Old Navy and then went to McD's to indulge a mutual mcnugget and shake craving and also so [livejournal.com profile] aersi could get herself the My Little Pony happy meal toys. I swear, pony fandom has completely eaten my friends list, lol. (It is an adorable cartoon for the most part.) We also drove up into the wilds of Deerfield in search of the Bridal Barn*, since they also carry my dress brand and I wanted to comparison shop. Fleh, $200 more. Course, 200 more vs driving all the way ass down to CT. *whine* decisions. Oh well. It wasn't an entirely unfruitful trip - I now have a business card with swatches of my wedding colors stapled to it, and [livejournal.com profile] aersi and I spent about half an hour alternately squeeing, giggling, and recoiling at various tuxedo styles. Man, I tell you what, Western tux styles. Yeah, I got nothin'.**

Caught a nap, overslept, then hauled somewhat scantily clad ass to Northampton to kitten/"whore" at Bon Appetit Burlesque, which was just as much if not more fun than just attending the show. Basically the MC, Hors D'oeuvres‡ has "Hors Whores" that set up props for each performer and clean up the stage between acts as well as occasionally help the performers out if they need it while they're on stage. Backstage? It's pretty much stage managing, which I haven't done since high school drama and wellp, I found out that I actually miss the backstage theater running around shit. (There are reasons why Noises Off is one of my favorite plays.)

While running around in extremely impractical boots (yes the same ones I posted earlier - dear gods, my feet today!) I got to fangirl squee all over my favorite performers, including Dot Mitzvah and Nikki LeVillain, help out with a couple of acts, buy drinks for Hors, and freak out all over the cue and stage setup books. At the same time, while most of the squirekids were either held up at home due to Sunday work commitments‡‡ or the 24 hour D&D session†, this was one of those shows where I saw a crapton of people I don't usually see, so there were drinks bought for me by [livejournal.com profile] grinninfoole, squee and hugs from Hobiecat Kitzmiller, and best of all, a completely unexpected appearance by The Cute Girl. (leather jacket? fishnets? yes please!)†† I also made a little bit of money - didn't realize kittens got a cut of the tip buckets, so that was a bonus. I helped run around and clean up after the show and drove home, enjoying the now-rare luxury of a nearly deserted I91 and some good music on the radio.

I overslept a bit again this morning and had to rocket out the door to make bell rehearsal on time. We sounded good, even if I picked up the wrong bell right at the end of our piece (D'oh!) and then I came home and crawled back into bed with an unconscious [livejournal.com profile] cell23, where we slept in until 3 instead of doing the running around we'd planned. *womp womp* Oh well. Sometimes decadently lazy Sundays are needed.

tl;dr, it's been something of an excellent weekend. And WTF 6:30 and still being daylight out? This better not mean it's pitch black at 6am again, damn it...


* which I unfortunately conflate in my head with the Bedding Barn. That makes interesting imagery, let me tell you.

** Also zoot suit styles. You know, in case your ideal wedding is a recreation of the Smooth Criminal video, in which case I say your wedding is invalid unless you can get your entire party to do this.

‡ Pronounced kind of like if you were saying "Whores Divorce" in a very snooty Park Avenue accent.

‡‡ Though consider, one of the guys from Sirlesque not only had to drive back to Boston after the show (and I know they didn't hit the road until a bit after midnight), he had to be at work at 5am the following morning. That is some dedication to the craft for you.

† I may have to sit down and compile a post of tweets from that - they were wheeze inducing, especially starting around hour 13.

†† *shifty eyes* we may have a date to see The Artist on Wednesday night. Eeeep! Also I need to find more footnote symbols. Or just number the damn things next time.
anagramofbrat: (Maleficent)
The weathermen have said to expect 1-4 inches of snow for the last three days. Other than a sprinkle that was gone by 10am? no snow. Temperatures dropped and errthang, but nothing fell from the sky. At least it sorta feels like winter out there - other than the freak snowstorm around Halloween we haven't really had any winter weather of note this year.... which of course means we're going to get five feet around beginning to mid-April. I'd not be surprised if we got snowed into PAX.

Anyway. So life, not much really to report at the moment. I've been fighting off a chest cold for a little over a week; today I'm ready to declare the battle lost. Mostly because I can; I'm done with today's bell performance (which went much better than previous ones) and I've got nothing planned for the rest of the day. I did want to get productive things done with the time, but considering how I feel right now, I'm declaring fuck it and reserve the right to hide in my nice warm bed with library books and the iPad relentlessly consuming media and occasionally whining pathetically at [livejournal.com profile] cell23 to get me things so I don't have to move. Considering what the last couple of days have been like with regard to social, family and wedding stuff commitments, I'm not too surprised my body is all "No, seriously, bitch, lay down and rest a spell."

Course, I can't complain, other than being punctuated by coughing the past couple days had their really good moments. Friday I spent running around doing wedding shit (more about that in a separate entry because there is a LOT of blathering to be done about that) and yesterday I spent first up in Athol at [livejournal.com profile] cell23's uncle's birthday brunch, and then later we went to Moti's for dinner and all I can say is oooooooh, Persian lamb stew nom nom. After that there was the Bon Appetit Burlesque's Love/Hate Show and, well, boobies. Also there is something incredibly happy about ending your day by being sassed (and then hugged) by an adorable drag queen in a wedding dress. I seriously have more than a little bit of a crush on Hors D'Oeuvres, I'm not even going to lie.

It was during the second half of the show that I (and indeed, everyone else in the audience) heard about Whitney Houston. this got long. )

Anyway. About that lying down, resting a spell and feeling miserable... Waiting to Exhale has been on my Netflix queue forever, maybe today's a good day to actually watch it.
anagramofbrat: (brat)
...when you realize how much of your fragile little psyche was shaped in childhood by commercials? Yep, had one of those this morning when I put The Preciousssss on random at work and Bobby Darin singing "Mack the Knife" came up near the top of the list.

"Mack the Knife" is a pretty awesome song. It's kind of a gateway drug into the messed up little world of Bertolt Brecht, if you're inclined towards interesting pockets of music geekery and not so much into pop/jazz standards of the early sixties. The problem is that if your brain was at a certain stage of malleability/development around 1989 (which mine was) and you watched probably too much TV than the experts deemed healthy at the time, this is probably the first thing you think of when you hear it:



A big scary moon face wearing sunglasses that's only slightly less creepy than the Burger King. Who can't lip synch to save his life. (RuPaul would be telling him to sashay away after three bars.)

I have similar problems with Beethoven's "Für Elise" because of yet another steller ad from Mickey D's.



I still know every single one of these words. There's a fleeting wish for a little brother included with that so I could spitefully deny him french fries. Hands off, they're mine, all mine ALL MINE!!!!!

Well, I suppose I have [livejournal.com profile] cell23 now, but he buys his own goddamn fries.

You know what else I still know all the words to after all these damn years?



Man, the McDLT, talk about taking a person back. :P I remember having the little plastic record of this back in the day and thinking it was just CRAZINESS that they could etch things on a skinny strip of vinyl and your record player would totally PLAY THEM. CDs were still expensive space tech at the time.

I suppose a greater comment about the impact of advertising on children can be made here considering how far up into the delicate nooks and crannies of my brain the ads from one company in particular (and one pushing fast food at that) have lodged themselves and remain long after I've grown up, but I'm not making it right now. Instead I just amusedly shake my head (and my fist) at how McDonalds has warped my fragile little mind and to some extent my music taste.

I will note, however, that I now have a POWERFUL craving for McNuggets.

NOM.

Jan. 6th, 2012 08:48 am
anagramofbrat: (om nom nom)


NEGL, I would bake and eat the fuck out of all of these.

Man, between The Hunger Games, A Song of Ice and Fire and Sunshine (which I really want to read again) it's a wonder I haven't gained 200lbs just by the power of suggestion. Of course, since the new hip thing is to come out with (mostly online) cookbooks to go with one's fantasy/science fiction, I may just. I mean, you're talking to the girl who thought a WoW cookbook would be awesome. Mmm, Goretusk Liver Pie...

Speaking of all of which, I ought to check if Whole Foods is gonna offer Part 2 of the Game of Thrones cooking class...
anagramofbrat: (Sugalumps)
How to make fantastic stew:


  • Bring home stew beef and root/aromatic veggies from the farmers market.

  • Let [livejournal.com profile] cell23 take it from there so he can actually do things like soak the beef overnight in Guinness and season/roux the damn thing up like a French Canadian cooking BAWWSE.

  • Profit


Jesus Christ. And this is straight out of the pot too - the notion that this is going to improve and taste even better tomorrow is blowing my damn mind right now.


In other delicious things shut up and get in my mouth news, while experimenting further with the cordial from last entry I think I accidentally created a toddy recipe. Will need to try it with some actual whiskey or vodka at some point, but even the non-alcohol version is fucking good.
anagramofbrat: (om nom nom)
One of the things I have been introduced to by way of the farmers market is this stuff:



That stuff. Is. Delicious. Specifically, it's Bug Hill Farm's black currant cordial. Seriously, I put a splash of it into a glass of lemonade with honey last night? Holy God in Seven Thousand Blazing Heavens. It's apparently really good in cider as well and currants are apparently insanely good for you, so there you go.

Anyway, if you're local, they're at the Amherst Winter Market on Saturdays, and if not, this is their web site, or explore some options local to you. Me, my next stop for this stuff is researching using it in marinade - so far all I've found is it's apparently really good on lamb. Hmm.
anagramofbrat: (fabulous)
Yeah I know it's ass o'clock am, what am I doing up. I woke up two hours-ish ago and its a good thing I did as my iPod was out of juice and none of my alarms were set for the day. At this rate, seeing as they're gonna go off in half an hour I might as well loop through for my work day and nap when I get home.

Yesterday (it still feels like today) was pretty awesome - productive shit was accomplished around the house in terms of cleaning, although in the process I encountered Horrendous Colonies of Green Fuzz. Note to self - I need to be more vigilant about rinsing out my plastic lunch containers when I get home. But I'm perversely proud of myself - apparently it takes three instances of stealth mold attacks now to freak me out as opposed to one, so I suppose I'm getting better with that whole green fuzzy phobia. Still. Need to stay on top of the kitchen a little more cause ewwww.

We has bookshelves in our bedroom now! Lol the cat is so confused right now. She seriously doesn't know what to make of there suddenly being these odd structures she can climb into. Considering I haven't had a chance to really unpack books to fill them with yet, she's been jumping in and out of the shelves in an investigative manner for most of the afternoon. Even caught her curled up on the top shelf of one next to my manga, which was all kinds of both cute and WTF.

Midway through my morning I got pinged by [livejournal.com profile] htl_1126, who was all like O HAI I'M IN TOWN AND IT'S YOUR BIRTHDAY I'M TREATING BOTH OF US TO HANGAR WINGS AND BEER. Talk about offers I cannot refuse! So out we went and indeed Wings were had. Oh God. Hangar wings. There is something about having them in the actual restaurant fresh out the kitchen that notches them up from delicious chicken crack to a near religious experience. Nothing like the 2 pound $45 ribeye steak [livejournal.com profile] cell23 had apparently, but I'm not super picky about my indulgences. Dead thing is dead thing.

I'd been facebook chatting with CuteGirl this past week since we keep being all non-proactive about getting together. Accursed lesbian sheep syndrome. Anyway she works in Amherst so I decided to wander by and say hello at the end of her shift. Ended up staying until she closed and then afterward we went to Barts for ice cream and sweet stuff and shit shooting. I had a lovely time and came home on a cloud of squee. I don't know where that's going but I'm enjoying it. Now hopefully it won't be another three months before we connect up again, but I doubt it will since we now know each other's work/game schedules. Muuuuhahahaha

It dawned on me that I've been on a meat and sugar bender since early Friday. Sheesh, no wonder I'm getting sick. Thankfully it remains a minor cold and once I quit dusting today my nose stopped running like a faucet so hopefully it'll be a short lived one as well. Can I be amused by how every time I'd go to New York for a week earlier this year [livejournal.com profile] cell23 would usually come straight down with something a couple of days later and now that he's the one gone, I'm the one all sniffly and ew? Oy.

I'm a little mad I volunteered to work today seeing as I'm nowhere near done with the housecleaning I wanted to get done and don't really feel like going in, but I like getting paid, so off I'll go in an hour. I have errands to run anyway. Still, no complaints about the weekend. None at all. :)
anagramofbrat: (om nom nom)
My sister sent me an entire can of pepparkakor.

WELLP IT'S BEEN NICE BEING SKINNY NOM NOM NOM

ETA: Also this.

Roundup

Oct. 8th, 2011 12:51 am
anagramofbrat: (yay jesus)
Reasons why today was awesome:

2am [censored] last night. Tee Hee.

My boss and several of the minions snuck up on me earlier this morning and were all LOLSURPRISEHAPPYBIRTHDAYHAVESOMEDIABEETUS. No really, I turned around and my boss was holding a box of six bits of baked and frosted decadence from Gregory's bakery in Hadley. In the center was this red velvet... THING. So much buttercream oh gods.

Lunch hour I went downtown on errand. Lets just say I spent about sixty bucks at Oh My and came out a very happy woman and leave it at that. Thanks for the birthday money, sis. XD Managed to also snag a black dragon coleus clipping - lets see if I can keep it alive.

Stopped at Walmart on my way home (yes yes shut up) and bought two low bookcases for our bedroom. Thank fucking god, places to put books and shit that aren't the same cardboard boxes I've been staring at since we moved in. Assembling those will be my project this weekend.

got taken out to the ABC for a lovely steak dinner by [livejournal.com profile] cell23, who turns out to be a devious and sneaky fuck indeed, seeing as after we finished up he convinced me he wanted to take a look around the new restaurant for a bit, so we went past the bar and into the pool and dart space they used to have at "the Upstairs" to find that a a good chunk of the Squirefolk were there and were all HAPPY BIRTHDAY and I was like EEEOMG because APPARENTLY [livejournal.com profile] cell23 set this up all sneaky-like and I totally didn't suspect a thing and was actually surprised to see everyone. I got plied with alcohol (can you tell I'm still a little tipsy?) and got to play pool and throw sharp things at round things and EEEEEEOMG there was totally surprizorz for me and it was awesome. Thanks for coming everyone.

So yeah, as far as birthdays go, I wasn't expecting much special out of this one and yet it ended up being the best birthday I've had in at least five years. Clearly I win everything tonight.

So, happy birthday to me. Now on with this being 33 nonsense.
anagramofbrat: (yarr!)
It seems I only had spoons and brainspace for the cooking bits of my aspirations for this weekend, but that's okay. After the frenzy of chopping and cooking tornadodom early yesterday afternoon I seemed to need the downtime and rest while stuff was actually doing the whole cooking thing, so I have no real regrets other than the usual nagging "I have to work tomorrow and the house is a mess and I haven't gotten anything done!" litanies, and since the last item is blatantly untrue (WTF, brain, were you absent all weekend?) and the house is actually better looking than usual owing to [livejournal.com profile] cell23 and I cleaning the kitchen, picking up around the living room and getting the bags of recycling out of the house yesterday, I'm cheerfully ignoring the little voices and resting on my laurels.

The tomato sauce came out the pot this morning after seventeen hours of cooking (!) and was quite yummy, though had more of a chili note than a pasta sauce underpinning to the taste. More wine, garlic and sugar needed I think. A jar of it is in the fridge in anticipation of a pasta night later this week (maybe) and several containers of it are in the freezer. I then cleaned out the pot and filled it with the split pea soup components I'd assembled yesterday, three large smoked pork neck bones (yeah yeah, insert your favorite southern black stereotype here) and a couple quarts of chicken stock; eight hours later there was some seriously delicious soup waiting to be boxed up and frozen for lunch. That came out perfect - other than swapping out turkey neck for pork, it tastes pretty much exactly like Ruthy's. (Maybe better, but don't tell her that! Or Dad for that matter!) Even dinner last night was damn tasty, being my usual OJ chicken fancy dinner standby, and I think I've finally solved the dilemma of getting the gravy for that to thicken up in a reasonable amount of time (how long have I been making that? five years? sheesh) and since I made a whole tray of breasts a couple of those are portioned out and boxed up for lunch too. My goal really is to quit nickel and diming money on food, be it lunches, dinners or snacks; it adds up alarmingly fast (I do like to eat when intestinal drama permits it) and when I do the math at least 3/4s of where my money disappears is down my throat. (shut up.) Need to cut that shit out if I'm ever going to a) save b) pay down anything. Hopefully between the split pea and the potato leek soup, the chicken and pasta, I'll get that in better control, at least for the next couple weeks.

Still need to figure out what I'm going to do with the last few tomatoes, cause I need to do something and no bites on anyone possibly taking them. I ended up freezing the carrot greens; maybe I'll just blanch, puree and freeze for later? I suddenly wish I'd paid attention when Carole was teaching herself to can vegetables. :/ A project for next summer maybe, depending on whether I decide to do the whole tomato vines in pots thing again. Also kinda wish I had a juicer.

I wasn't cooking QUITE the whole time this weekend - [livejournal.com profile] cell23, [livejournal.com profile] deliriumdeva and I did make a trip down to the diner late last night for coffee and light fare and shooting the shit with [livejournal.com profile] lysscat, which there was plenty of because the diner was dead for a Saturday. You guys, there's this Greek coffee frappe on the menu that not only is delicious, but had so much caffeine that I was sorta seeing funny auras around stuff after drinking half of it. *chuckle* not that [livejournal.com profile] lysscat didn't try to warn me that I'd probably start vibrating after drinking one, but at the time that seemed like more of a recommendation than a deterrent. Still is. Whee.

Speaking of interesting effects on brain chemistry, I am current buzzed nigh unto tipsy; in celebration of getting a prodigious amount of slow cooked stuff done, I cracked open one of the licor43 nips and had that celebratory cocktail I'd been craving since first having this stuff at Christmas. And oh.... dear fates, it's just as good as I remember. And as potent. I now know why two glasses at Stanley's had me more than a little wobbly for a while - this sweet sneaky shit is 62 proof, which is murder to a lightweight like me and yeah, I notice that my already miniscule tolerance to alcohol has vanished along with my weight so I'm being good and only having one tonight. I'll save the other nip for when I need a treat with a punch.

[livejournal.com profile] cell23 seems to be on a "so many drugs were involved in the making of this movie" jag on Netflix - over the past few days I've sat through most of both Hunter S. Thompson movies (Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and Where the Buffalo Roam) and today, Cannibal; the Musical. (I don't necessarily blame drugs for that one - Trey Parker and Matt Stone kind of naturally excrete crack into their bloodstream from some gland or another.) Also rewatched Hot Tub Time Machine, since cell23 had never seen it and it's just amiably silly enough to survive a second watching a year or so later. Currently behind on all of my TV watching other than Doctor Who. Still need to make a media consumption post at some point. Argh.

I think right now I need to eat something to soak some of the Cuarenta y Tres out of my blood though.
anagramofbrat: (om nom nom)
You know, there are some days where you couldn't pay me enough to cook anything, and then there are days like today where i am become cooking tornado. I'm reminded of a bit of a long ago story I didn't write but was nevertheless written about my gang of friends at the time, and the charachter analogous to me had a regular night where she was in charge of dinner. The writer kinda had me pegged: the comment was made that the rest of the gathered company didn't know whether they were getting peanut butter sandwiches or a six course gourmet meal made from scratch. Yep. That's me.

Anyway, I got up mad early today, borrowed the Manbeast's car, went to the Amherst farmer's market, stopped in a couple other places for ingredients and other supplies, came home, and spent the next few hours chopping up stuff/running the food processor/blanching and peeling tomatoes. End result is that there is a large crock pot of tomato sauce bubbling away on the counter, which it will do until at least midnightish, if not later. Which is completely unfair because it smells fucking FANTASTIC now. As well as that (because if I was chopping up/mincing shit, I was gonna do it all in one go) there's a large mixing bowl of the dry bits of the split pea soup waiting its turn in the crock pot. And the orange juice chicken I'm making for dinner is cheerfully marinating in the fridge - just needs to be popped out and cooked. Later there will also be lemon rice to go with it and some kind of veggie... thing. Maybe. Whatever, it will be dinner.

So all that plus cleaning the kitchen was a butt-ton of work, but I think the delicious that will ensue will be worth it.

I also learned something quite dangerous today: Liquors 44 may not sell the 11.95 bottle of Licor 43, sadly (and I still don't feel like I can indulge myself in buying a $25 big bottle of the stuff) however they DO sell it in $2.30 nips. CRAVING ASSUAGED, mama's having delicious creamsicle cocktail later.

Now I have to figure out what to do with several large leftover tomatoes, a small bowl of minced carrot greens, and most of a bottle of burgundy wine, if no one claims them....


And now for something completely different... WTF Doctor Who??? Brain... broken...
anagramofbrat: (mass autumn)
  • I'm getting better. The whole forcing myself to eat until my body stops treating food with suspicion seems to be working. Balancing it with lots of fluids, which seems to help. Small snacks instead of actual meals also seems to be the right way to go, especially since my stomach still likes to be all like NO after ten bites of anything. Not exactly 3 meals a day friendly right there.

    Surprisingly so far what has been pretty well accepted right now is cheese. I would think it would be something that would make me feel horrible but apparently this is not my week to be dairy-sensitive. So the last few days one of my primary nibbles is chunks of hard sharp yummy. [livejournal.com profile] grinninfoole treated me to a small brick of Gruyere on Thursday and today at the farmers' market the lady at the Chase Hill Dairy Farm stand gave me the remainder sample chunk of her sold out Queso Veijo, so for right now at least it's an easily indulged craving.

  • Speaking of which, I did indeed go out to lunch with [livejournal.com profile] grinninfoole on Thursday, though considering my digestive issues I opted to have chicken noodle soup instead of Bueno y Sano. I do enjoy our lunch dates, it seems to be a nice check-in/how are we doing for both of us and have some frank discussion about depression, recovery, efforts at being more social/adult/goal oriented and how all that's going for us. Other than my health issues, we both seem to be on an upswing at the same time, which is excellent.

  • D&D went decently on Thursday night; after a group consensus that combat and general gameplay needed to be tightened, I think overall we all did better. Apparently putting a chart down on my combat cheat sheet listing all my dice roll values helped me a lot - a fair amount of what slows me down during game, believe it or not, is trying to figure out what 17+26-4 is. We seem to be approaching the end of our campaign, and while I like playing Mare and enjoy the band of characters we've got going, I think I'm in agreement with [livejournal.com profile] avalon616 here - epic tier is kinda rough and aspects of it are starting to poke me in the "this is why you never liked endgame raiding in WoW either" place. Starting to. They haven't quite gotten there yet. We'll see how we progress.

  • Work is actually pretty good now that back to school rush is over and the work study minions are starting to know what they're doing. The bad part is that my layout's been accepted so now I'm on the profoundly unfun bit of website design where I have to translate pretty shit in photoshop into CSS. Eugh. And I still have Other job stuff to do so if I can find a bit of time to work on that this weekend, next week should be nice, money wise.

    Oh and yesterday (well actually today, but never mind) was my boss's birthday. Apparently most of a slice of red velvet cake doesn't disagree with me either, go figure. ITS does not scrimp on the baked goods, seeing as besides the red velvet there was this cake called "to die for" that looked too much like diabetes on a plate to even want to get near, but damn. Also ITS has a fair amount of Polish folks. There was a rousing chorus of "Sto Lat" as the cakes were getting cut.

  • Kiddos are here, and for the most part, behaving themselves. Kidzilla's missing front tooth is ridiculously cute when she giggles:



    See? Oh here, since Lil'Beast decided to butt into the picture taking have a bonus.



    We had a nice visit this morning from their grandparents ([livejournal.com profile] chirping_monkey's side) who dropped off a kitchen playset for them. Lil'Beast kept coming down the stairs and serving us invisible cakes. These are the moments that keep me from eating him, I swear.

    Every so often I have an "AAAAH TOO FAST STOP GROWING" with them. Between Kidzilla's facial window, having to raise her bike seat this afternoon, and the fact that Lil'beast is now too big for his PJs, tricycle and almost his sandals... yeah. They've both changed so much in the two years I've been regularly part of their weekends on this end of MA. And yeah, I realize it's what kids do, lol, come on, I'm still having issues with my nephew being legal to drink and getting tattoos and macking on women cause he tall and cute. Somewhere in the back of my brain he stopped growing around 12 and his siblings and Alejandra all stopped accordingly as well, no matter what their facebook statuses say. One of those things, I guess.

  • We also managed to make it out to the farmers market, as I mentioned earlier. Came home with ingredients for some ghost pepper chili (which I will not be eating, thank you) and I've been bugging [livejournal.com profile] cell23 for two weeks to make potato leek soup, so he got stuff for that too. Noms are afoot. And the kids got maple candy and cheese and cookies so they as usual made out like bandits. I didn't personally get too much this time around, but I'm thinking next week I'll stop by the astarte farms tent, buy up a whole big bag of their end of season tomatoes as well as any I get off Icky and Sticky in the next week or so, plus a few other bits and pieces and try my hand at making an army sized batch of tomato sauce in the crock pot.

  • New eggs in the cave today! I know I know "you still play that game? lolwut?" yeah yeah shut up.

    Adopt one today! Adopt one today! Adopt one today! Adopt one today! Adopt one today!


Yeah, that's kinda life as I know it right now. In a few hours it'll be time for me and some of the crew to head down to Northampton for burlesque, and then tomorrow I think there's apple picking happening since we didn't get to go for Kidzilla's birthday. Definitely creeping on up to Fall... cannot wait...
anagramofbrat: (covered in bees)
Bad/Annoying: Our fridge shat the bed, probably on Sunday. Thinking the defrost timer either broke or iced over. Hopefully it'll get fixed today, but in the meantime I've been on a bit of a spree of throwing out, cooking, or attempting to save what was in there. You all probably can surmise why this isn't making me very happy, particularly the half inch or so of cheddar cheese that had already developed a nasty case of green fuzzy pox. On the upside, [livejournal.com profile] cell23 and I haven't gone shopping in a while so the fridge is pretty bare. Mostly annoyed because we did just get a gallon of milk which I had to tip down the drain and about eight eggs left that I now can't use, but the rest of what was in there in all honesty probably was about at the "throw me out nau" stage anyway. So it's really nowhere near as bad as it could have been.

Also in solidarity with the fridge, the kitchen overhead light is starting to die, which translates to crazy making florescent flicker. Growl.

Silver Lining: Had to quickly come up with a way to get rid of both the two tomatoes from the back and the handful of cherry tomatoes we got over the weekend at the farmstand. They have been cut up, salted, dusted with basil and stuck in the oven; hopefully later today I'll have some delicious "sun-dried" tomatoes to munch on. At least today it isn't nearly as hot and sticky as it has been so running the oven on low all day isn't as miserable of a prospect as it would have been yesterday.

ETA: Dear CHRIST. I just sampled a few of the little ones. They are so delicious I could cry.

Good: I had an interview up at the Smith computer store yesterday which seemed to go quite well.

Even better: I had the car and the time, so I nipped down to Westfield to dust and tidy my office, call a couple of clients, forward my office phone to google voice and say hello to the gang down there.

Better than that: also was treated to yummy dead cow and henbitching by [livejournal.com profile] htl_1126, whom I haven't seen in forever.

Slightly annoying: Westfield omnipresent road construction seems to have gotten exponentially worse since the last time I was down.

Excellent: It apparently HAD gone quite well, since they offered the job to me this morning. :) I start tomorrow. Yay money. Even better, yay weekly check.

AAAAAAAAAGH: currently somewhat paralyzed by my to-do list between now and the asscrack of tomorrow's dawn, which is when I'm going to have to leave. Totally procrastinating by posting to LJ.


So you know. Things are mildly exciting around here. Mildly.
anagramofbrat: (om nom nom)
Just so you know, sometime in college I was rendered unable to discuss anything related to popovers with a straight face because a friend of mine exposed me and a bunch of mutual friends to Muppet Frog Prince.



Thankfully popovers don't come up in conversation very often around me, and when they do it's always directly in reference to getting them at Judie's in Amherst, which is notorious for them. But in case you're talking to me about popovers, don't think I'm weird if I feel the need to be all "HAVE A POPOVER FROGGY."

Muppet Frog Prince is also directly responsible for "Nighty night. *fwooomp*" Which I also will quote from time in moments of extreme tiredness.
anagramofbrat: (lady gaga)
A large window, overlooking a swath of street well trafficked by both pedestrians and cars, mounted high on the wall.

Warm red walls, a six inch sill by the window.

A raised table flanked with high bar stools, level with the windowsill, tucked around the corner from the door, protected from the draft by a glass box vestibule, creating a sort of alcove for this table by the window.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and maybe if my phone camera had been working or I had brought the Hatemonber with me as I waited for [livejournal.com profile] grinninfoole to arrive for our lunch date, I would have captured this empty spot at Bueno y Sano in between its lunch rush occupants. It's a prime people-watching spot, so catching it empty is a rare thing indeed. Likely I could use far more words to describe it - the beige, evenly spaced slats on the chairs, the green cushions, the speckled, faux-stone plastic inlay on the top of the table. But I won't. I only know that I spent about five minutes staring into that corner, caught up quite powerfully in a very pleasant memory of another time, another lunch date, and catching myself smiling. Funny what will do that to you sometimes.

I need to go back and take that picture sometime.

It's been a long tiring day, and lunch with the Foole was one of the two high points of it, the other being running into Phil driving the B43 and catching up with him after not seeing him for a year. One bad thing about driving so much last year is that I miss all the PVTA drivers, so it's nice to see them when I do have to head to Northampton for something these days. Alas, the day post-lunch has been meh at best, due to being somewhat under the weather, intestinal cranky, and learning some sad news affecting friends. But I've been home for about an hour or so, and I'm about to head downstairs to make dinner for myself, the Manbeast, and the McGurk (see, it's alliterative!), who is coming over for Smallville shenanigans later. So I am not writing off the day just yet.

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