Tuesday, November 30, 2010

december resolution

so that whole posting every day, err, every OTHER day in november thing. well, yes.

tomorrow is a brand new month - december. this one promises to be chock full of anxiety - i can't wait! i am going to try to set up some mini goals for myself periodically throughout this month to get ready to not make new years resolutions. first on the list for this week: going to turn off the computer/tv/phone at 11pm every night and read a damn book. first I need to finish Oishinbo: Japanese Cuisine and then i have no idea. 47 minutes to search the interwebs for good books before it is lights out.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Monocle

What I meant to say is that I am TOTALLY on board NaBloPoMo on the EVEN days of the month. So today's food for thought prompt from them is: Would you rather be wealthy and ugly, wise and sickly, or beautiful and stupid?
No, I didn't think so either.
Instead I will take one from October 22nd: Do you have any scars? How'd you get them?
Yes - I have scars, three of which have stories I like to tell. My favorite is from 2nd Grade.

In 2nd grade I had these 2 big hardcover science books that were prized possessions, constant companions. I can still visualize them quite clearly, but not clearly enough to get a good google search result. One book had a light blue cover (I can't recall the photo), the other was orange with a baby seal who kind of looked like this:

So I brought the books to school pretty much every day. During an arts & crafts project which may or may not have involved a pine cone and/or macaroni, a drop of glue fell on the orange book - smack dab on top of one of the baby seal's eyes. I did not realize it right away so when I discovered the drop it had already hardened into a perfectly round shallow dome - an opaque eye patch if you will.

It was rainy that day, so morning recess was inside - a perfect opportunity to restore the book. I held the book firmly in place on my desk with my left hand, palm down, fingers spread. In my right hand, a pair of open scissors. I proceeded to scrape the glue spot using a jabbing motion with one of the scissor blades. One of those jabs made less than perfect contact and the scissors soaredover the small milky dome in straight in to my hand - the point jammed in to that soft spot at the bottom of your thumb that you are supposed to squeeze when you get a headache.

It started to bleed pretty much immediately so I quickly formed a bowl with my right hand to catch the dripping blood and ran out to the hallway to find Mrs. Baker, the teacher on duty who in turn sent me to the nurse, etc. etc. Those details are not interesting at all.

When I returned to my desk, someone had cleaned everything up - wiped up the floor, the desk, the book - apart from my bandaged hand, you would have never known the incident had occurred. Of course the first thing I did was inspect the book. The eye patch was gone (?!), but replaced with a monocle - a perfect ring of dried blood surrounding that poor baby seal's eye. Sort of like this:

I don't REALLY know how or when the glue spot popped off, leaving just the thin ring of blood. I don't know what happened to those books - likely replaced by Beverly Cleary as it was right around this time I entered the Ramona phase. But I do know that it was an ill conceived method of removal and that little memento on my left hand will always to remind me.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


So it's National Blog Posting Month and I am totally signed up for this thing. And I am already behind a post - off to a great start!
So is everyone talking about Halloween? That's what I thought. Or maybe that was yesterday (but I missed that day).

So instead let's talk about the jewelry thing that is suggested for today and THEN I will get to the Halloween bit where I tried to talk Caleb in to giving me the Whoppers (unsuccessfully).

About four years ago I purchased my very favorite piece of jewelry EVER from a couple who was exhibiting with the American Craft Council. Actually, I didn't purchase it - my sister and I discovered them together and gave the pieces we selected to each other for Christmas presents (this is some sort of buyers rationale). In any case - I wear this necklace almost daily - so much so that on more than one occasion, someone has said "oh! i thought that was a tattoo!" (i have none but that would be a good one!)
so here is a photo - brand spanking new. mine is delightfully faded and well worn. sadly i have lost the match to 2 sets of earrings from them so I just wear the mismatched ones together and it works (look at me! SO quirky)
So I give you the amazing talent at M.A.D.E. and the link to their Etsy Store.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Insert Link - Insert Link - Insert Link

I'm not a huge blog follower, but do have some voyeuristic tendencies for a few people that I find humorous for a quick mid-day distraction. So a new one for me is that of Danielle - I found her blog through another that I pop in to from time to time - FUSSY. Now, about Fussy - she did these amazing action figure yoga classes - if you haven't read them, time to get to it by going HERE - so brilliant!

SO...Danielle. She's funny! I wish I could write like her! But then she CRUSHED me with her internet pet peeves - see HERE. Maybe we can't be internet friends after all.

Farmer's Market haul? GUILTY. Posting every week of our CSA to my Picasa site. But in my defense, I intend to make a little Mac photo book to give to my farmer as a little thank you for an amazing season of veggies! Isn't that a great idea?

Hipstamatic? Now granted, I am not nearly as overzealous as I was when I first got this app - but I DO like it! And not everything is green - look at this!

Kate Beaton - so I'm not ALL that in to comics but a good friend of mine REALLY is (check him out at DHARBIN) and he is always going on and on about her on Twitter. So this just gives me another reason to follow Kate more regularly because I think I might be missing out on something!

The fourth item - well, this is a new one for me. I am certainly guilty of using technology at inappropriate times (but never dinnertime) but I don't need an app to tell me so. But yes, I need to power the fuck down much more often. Thanks.

And finally, following that many people on Twitter? Now that's just plain silly. And downright sad.

Friday, July 9, 2010

june 2010

eesh - what happened to june? i'll tell you what happened...one week at the beach, one fundraiser, one trip to charleston, one long weekend of birthdays + father's day, one week of the craziest of crazy weeks at work and one week in spain.

tanned, not burned
feel good feeling of doing some GOOD work for those less fortunate
mccrady's pork duo
star wars birthday cake
all things birthday related, except for the cleaning up part
seeing best college friend for five crazy hours
and of course spain...more on that later

Thursday, May 27, 2010


the other night we were at our favorite sushi place and Caleb's favorite all time restaurant - Cuisine Malaya - or 'Robert's.' because the sushi bar seats were full (didn't they know it was Tuesday? And we almost always come on Tuesday after swimming??), we sat at the real bar. on these occasions, caleb is usually allowed to have a sprite or a gingerale and because of where we were sitting, he even got to see them pour it in to his cup. So this my friends? THIS is what Caleb has decided he wants for his birthday:

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

stuff white people do

when erik was a little boy, he thought what most little white boys thought - all asian people knew karate and all black people knew each other. such innocence, such hilarity.

so the other night we rented the animated Clone Wars movie for Caleb and at one point during the action the character Mace Windu is introduced. and Caleb quietly turned to me and said, "is that Barack Obama?"

Monday, May 10, 2010

dinner woes

kids are inevitably going to like and/or dislike something that you love and/or abhor. when caleb was born, we wondered what it was going to be - boys bands and a hatred for metal? that was our best guess.

should have known all along it was going to be food related. but this is not the common rant that he will only eat chicken nuggets (in fact he has never had one and maybe we should keep it that way). it is sort of a no vegetable eating thing, though every now and then he will surprise us be announcing he wants brussel sprouts (yes, really...) so i can't even complain about that.

what it is - is baffling. one day he will scarf something down, just weeks later he won't touch that very same thing. all of the sudden he doesn't like popcorn? and eggs? yet that boy will eat $30 of sushi NO PROBLEM. and not sissy sushi - I'm talking ikura, nigiri - the real deal. please don't let it happen to butter beans - my go-to veggie.

and SO - the battle tonight was over pasta with red sauce (as he requested). nary a green vegetable on that plate (also requested). and NOT the green noodles, the white - no YELLOW - ones. and sausage because he hasn't really met a pork product he doesn't like. and yet - we battle. thankfully we ended up with a clean plate - eventually and reluctantly.

oh, and i bribed him with a lollipop.

Monday, May 3, 2010

week one - csa

we did it! we used almost every bit of our first week's delivery. for people with great eating habits, time to plan meals and an unconditional love for vegetables - a CSA is for you. We, however, have not-perfect habits (but in the grand scheme of things I would say they are 'quite good'), little to no time for planning and well, more often than not i end up composting the last quarter or so of the veggies we have bought. so wasteful. i do love veggies - but i love pork more. and ice cream - it NEVER goes bad.

i vowed to change once we got on the new town CSA (after a 7 year wait). so this week:
pick up was tuesday so we made a delicious green salad that night with the lettuces and arugula. it was a clean out the fridge meal using some things that would be of questionable use the rest of the week and in a few cases the following day. basil with brown spots, last 2 eggs in the carton, leftover grilled beets from last week, some bendy carrots. put it all together with a quick mustard vinaigrette and viola! a perfectly tasty - in fact delicious - salad. caleb even proclaimed it a 'feast' - but of course ate nothing green.

so then the bin of veggies sat in the fridge - I put it front & center so every time I opened the fridge there was the constant reminder and ensuing guilt. but still - wednesday & thursday went by with life getting in the way of my best intentions. and then friday. we HAD to use them saturday. so i picked through - admittedly i had to sacrifice some - but ended up with some of the tastiest cooked greens I have ever had. here is how it was done:

we had kale, turnip greens and what i think was swiss chard - in terms of quantity, it filled up the salad spinner. started by sauteeing about a half package of bacon until it was pretty crispy - took that off and dumped in a diced onion and cooked until it just started to brown/caramelize. added quartered baby white oriental turnips and sauteed until all had nice color. piled in the greens, flipped them around with the tongs until they were just barely cooked down. I was supposed to finish the greens with some salt & pepper and apple cider vinegar. but i forgot all of those things and I am sort of glad i did because it needed nothing!

so tonight - the eve of our next delivery - you will find me chomping on the last of the radishes (try them with a bit of butter) and hoping to salvage the last few pieces of bok choy and we will have had a completely successful week one!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

operation primal cut

so what started as a very casual pipe dream type idea has taken on a life of its own - and I couldn't be more excited or more terrified. so - a butcher shop. that's the idea and i think it could be amazing. so we've started our research and hope to head out on a few field trips in the upcoming weeks. in the mean time, the right side of my brain is in overdrive swimming with potential names, the overall look - the fun stuff. unfortunately the not-at-all fun part of developing the business plan and working on the financials looms.

Monday, March 8, 2010

caleb's favorite joke

what are you eating under there?

also, he likes to tell a 'secret' - which is the word 'underpants' whispered (sort of) in to your ear.

i have a feeling four years old is going to be AWESOME

Monday, February 8, 2010

photo class

I have learned so much already in my Intro to DSLR class...so very happy that I made the time to enroll. The last 'class' I took was defensive driving school for a speeding ticket a while back - so let's just say it has been quite some time since I have sat down for instruction, had homework, etc. Here are a few things I have learned (besides aperture, shutter and ISO settings).

I still put my homework off until the night before it is due. Last week's assignment has all my gears turning the minute we got it. I was FULL of brilliant ideas (the assignment was to shoot the following: green, flower, dirt, wood, close, night, glass, water). I think I even dreamt about the assignment. I was so excited! And then next thing I know, it is Saturday and I haven't shot anything. NOTHING. So yesterday (Sunday) I finally got to it - and I never got to my 'night shot' - and I am really only happy with about 3 of the photos I took. Also, I had and have focus issues.

I am really competitive and judgmental of my work, and that of the other students. And not really in a good way - it sort of brings out this side of me that I would rather not admit I have - petty, selfish, egocentric. But on the flip side it is the side of me that feeds my drive for success, attention to detail - basically the things that have carried me to the place I am now. So it can't be all bad?

So here is one of the three photos I like - I am going to go ahead and post it before it is critiqued tonight. Because I may come to find out there are all sorts of flaws here, but for now I like it. This is green/pattern/close. I got a super sweet new lens (that I kind of only sort of know how to use appropriately). What I was going for was a cool depth of field shot - I like the contrast between what is in & out of focus and the lines they create.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Christmas Wish

Caleb: "Can I have a brother for Christmas?"



Me: "Caleb, I just can't answer you right now because my heart and my ovaries have just exploded."

Friday, January 29, 2010

tail on shrimp

have just returned from lunch, and was reminded again about how much tail on shrimp bother me. when the shrimp are seasoned or grilled and worst of all sauced - a tail on means fingers on which means mess on. so i am curious - why the tail on?
chowhound has some answers.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Thursday, January 14, 2010

pat on the back

There is rarely a lack of great ideas and good intentions for me - my problem has always been in the execution and follow through department. So when I actually do motivate and cross off things on the lost, I get especially proud of myself. This post is really just about boasting, but here are a few things I am pleased about.
1. Getting all my contacts organized. The launch pad for this project was my new MacBook - a clean slate. So I compiled and merged 5 sets of contacts - from the desktop, old laptop, work exchange account, iPhone and christmas card excel sheet (they only place that contained physical addresses for anyone). OH were there duplicates and deletions but I streamlined to a cool 490 contacts that 'made the cut.'
2. Enrolled in photography class. About a year and a half ago I purchased a Nikon D60 camera which changed my life. But honestly, I use it to about 10% of its capabilities and while I like to think I have taken some pretty sweet shots, it was time to learn a bit more in order to become a little more legit. Also, hoping I can use my new smarts and apply to a trip to Spain in May (fingers crossed). The class I am taking is Introduction to DSLR Photography at the Light Factory with Peter Zay - who is originally from Hungary and bears a striking resemblance to Daniel Castano.
3. Signed up for a CSA with New Town Farms. I should say I am not as much proud, but so very thankful I got on the list! I have been on the New Town wait list for years and since that initial sign up have gotten to know Sammy much better through farm dinners and at the market. Let's just say not only is thier produce hands down the finest in the area, but they are about the nicest people in the world and I am thrilled to be able to support them while they support me. Sure, sure - locovore is the buzz word and I am clearly on the band wagon - but this really is a win-win for everyone. So here's to good eating come spring!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

renny & wilbur

When Caleb was a little more than 2 - let's go with 2 1/3 - he befriended two very small imaginary (boys? men? wasn't clear on age) - Lenny and Wilbur (as I understood their names at that time). It is hard to visualize anything other a couple cut characters from a Steinbeck novel. Not much to say about Lenny & Wilbur - they tagged along from time to time, most often travelling in pockets, sometimes they played outside, other times they were locked in the cage or hiding. Not constant companions and in fact, just a few months ago I thought they were simply gone since they hadn't been mentioned in a while. So tonight Caleb was playing on the couch with RENNY (we came to discover he was saying this all along) and Wilbur and he said something about them crying because of their mom (never did get to the bottom of what horrible offense she had committed) and then out of nowhere he said, "Renny & Wilbur don't have a dad. He died in an accident. In the road. A car got him." So tonight, we remember Renny & Wilbur's dad. RIP.