Sunday, November 27, 2011

Thanksgiving Weekend

Thanksgiving has been awesome. Much turkey (20 lb locally grown from Valley View Farms, brined. Cooke in 3 hours. What's up turkey? Why did people used to get up at 5 a.m. to put the turkey in the oven?), much pie (not enough sugar to compensate for roasted pumpkins), much stuffing (two kinds, cornbread and green chile and regular mushroom, onion, celery--thanks Mary Anne!) and possibly the best gravy ever (Thanks Grandma and mom for teaching me how to make gravy. If there were gravy-making contests, I'd enter). Besides food, we have gone on two bike rides (and I hope for a third today), cleaned the house, shopped for a mountain bike for Zoe, bought two (two! Christmas presents, none on Black Friday), eaten ramen noodles for lunch on Thanksgiving Day and sushi for dinner on Saturday. Erik's raking pine needles and putting away the outdoor furniture. But I've spent most of the weekend revising the nonfiction manuscript. It's due to the publishers on Wednesday. I'm freaking out. (I forgot there was sex in it. Sorry mom!). I'm reading Joni Trevis's "The Wet Collection" and Maggie Nelson's "Bluets" and hoping my book is as good (it's not like those books at all). I'm happy to find some common threads besides the purposefully constructing one. Lawn mowing mostly, but a recurring motif nonetheless. It is different publishing nonfiction in book form than in lit mags. I'll tell you who doesn't read lit mags. My mom or my mother-in-law. But they read books and this one has highly inappropriate sexually material. I cut some of it out but still. It's one of the points of the books (boundaries/dams/giving way/holding back) so most of it has stayed. I've also fixed most of the ridiculous phrasing and typos and possibly made some of the tangential metaphors clearer. I look forward to editorial feedback from the press. I want this book to be as good as I can make it, even if it freaks my mom out.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

33 Flavors and then some

I typed this all up and then Firefox crashed. I hate my computer. But I love my sisters who made me and sent me notes leading up until my birthday so I will retype them (OK, Zoe retyped half of them) and indicate whether or not I did the job that the sisters suggested.

1.      Cry for no reason and let them eat cake! (Yes. I’m pretty sure I did this.)

2.      Remember your terrible twos. Do something bad today. (Probably.)

3.      Take today to recognize the exploration of a three year old. What’s that? Why? (Always!)

4.      Try to drink a forty. Just try. (Nope.)

5.      Happy 5th! Kindergarten, riding bikes, and knowing your numbers and letters. Best celebrated with a long walk, a game with the kids and at least an hour reading your favorite book. (I tried to do most of this. I’ll finish the other 45 minutes of reading this week).

6.      On the sixth day, perhaps it would be best to drink a 6-pack. Since I know this is not your cup of tea, spend 6 minutes doing absolutely nothing. (I’m working on it.)

7.      Seven DEADLY sins. Seven wonders of the world. You choose! But do one of them. (I live close to one of the seven wonders, does that count?)

8.      Eight lords of leaping! Take a leap…and do something you have always wanted to do. (I went on a mountain bike ride in the forest behind the house with El and Rick and Zoe with Max in the baby seat for 5 beautiful miles.)

9.      Listen to the Beatles White Album. (This is when the trouble began. I only own the White Album in album form. Our iTunes is somehow locked up on a non-working computer. Erik’s working on it).

10.  Listen to Led Zeppelin’s Ten Years Gone today. (Listened just now!)

11.  Eleven! Eleven! Today you need to make a wish. (Made a wish. Also. On Veteran’s Day, 11/11/11 I looked at my clock and missed 11:11 a.m. by 1 minute. Wished anyway.)

12.  Celebrate your womanhood today and do your toes, get your hair done, make it a great day! (Not so much. But I will make a hair appointment this month!)

13.  Triskaidekaphobia celebrate your bat mitzvah. (When I think of Bat Mitzvah, I think of Magda’s and her mom, Jackie Osherow’s stir-fried green beans with lemon and almonds. So I celebrated by eating green beans.)

14.  It is important to listen to Metallica today, don’t ask…(I did it. I still didn’t get it. But I did it.)

15.  Quincerara Day. Buy a new dress and make it a night to remember. (Val brought me a new dress when she came to visit. Does that count?)

16.  Watch 16 Candles. (It was on HBO!)

17.  Senior Prom! Relive it. (I didn’t go to senior prom but they have adult prom in Flagstaff in June at the Orpheum. Perhaps I’ll try to go.)

18.  Graduation Day. Use this day to celebrate everything you have accomplished since graduation. Make a list! (I’m no good at lists but Zoe is typing this list for me since I got so mad the computer crashed. I think that counts.)

19.  Nineteen is the end of an era. Watch gone with the wind. (I still have never seen it.)

20.  This is half time. Celebrate the :20 (I think this is a pot reference but I could be wrong.)

21.  Drink, drink a lot and don’t care about tomorrow. (I got this on a weekday.)

22.  Make twice the wish you made for 11. (I did. Twice.)

23.  This is a lucky day! Focus on the great things that will happen today.  (I did this too.)

24.  Take 24 hours off. Call in sick, make an excuse and do whatever you want. (Oh P. You’ll see soon. Moms don’t get days off.)

25.  Quarter life crisis. Write a letter to yourself at 25. (Dear Nik, I can’t believe you left Portland for grad school. It was a good move but the word Portland still makes my mouth water.)

26.  It’s two weeks to the big day, presents should start. (They did. Val sent me another present. Didn’t I get a dress from you? Opening it tomorrow!)

27.  Watch 27 Dresses today. (Put it on Netflix.)

28.  Watch 28 Days Later or watch 28 Days. (I gave up zombie movies and rehab movies at my last birthday.)

29.  In honor of the 29th day of February, take today as an extra day. Act as if you have an entire day to do whatever you wish. (See #24).

30.  Look for all the photos from your 30th birthday. Smile at all the ones which you look exactly the same. (This is an awesome charge. Now I need photos from the Dirty 30 party. Miss Paegle? Mr. Burger?

31.  31 Flavors. Eat some ice cream! (Does butter count?)

32.  32 Flavors and then some! Eat more ice cream. (More butter. Plus, awesome Ani reference.)

33.  One week until birthday. This should be a great day. Go to dinner with friends. (Stop counting damnit.)

34.  Redecorate! Find something you can change in your house for under $3.40-$34.00 and do it. (Copper from thriftstore polished and reorganized into decorative alcove!)

35.  Get yourself some new shoes. (I did this one! Thanks to mom’s gift. They are awesome.)

36.  Drink 4 glasses of wine and call me in the morning. (See #s 29 and 24)

37.  You deserve it! Drink 3 glasses of wine. (That I can manage.)

38.  (Stop counting)

39.  (I said, that will do.)



Thursday, November 03, 2011

The last bite

I just ate the last bite of the veggie lasagna I made last week. It was possibly better than the lasagna bolognese I also made. Before I forget what I put in it, here's the recipe.
1 lb. mozz.
no boil noodles
squash of some sort
tomatoes (semi-ripe)
For bechamel:

This entire recipe, save the lasagna noodles, milk, butter and flour was made from items garned from the Flagstaff CSA.

I received a ginormous squash at the CSA. I put it out with the Halloween pumpkins and thought I would leave it on the porch steps for a month or two until its collapsed form no longer could fake decoration-status. But why not use it? Lo though I hate peeling sqaush, this one was so big, it was actually kind of easy. I used about half of it and contributed the rest to the squash heap of history. I sliced it into thin half-rounds and boiled it in salted (and a big sugared) water until it was al dente. Then, I sliced parsnips and cooked them in butter because there wasn't enough butter in the bechamel which I was making on the side and not the fancy, clove-stuck onion and bay leaf way, but the butter, flour = roux, whisk in some milk way.
Then I layered.
First bechamel. Then, noodles, then squash, parsnips, sliced tomatoes, torn arugula, mozz, then bechamel, noodles, squash, parsnips, sliced onions, sliced tomatoes, torn basil mozz, then bechamel, noodles, squash, parsnips, arugula, mozz, then noodles, then bechamel, then topped with mozz (and maybe some parm).
Cook for 1 hour while at a neighbors' party.
Possibly better than the bolognese (with CSA pork and ground beef) version I also took over to a different party that evening. Possibly.