Monday, April 27, 2009

I am not going to complain. I am not going to complain. I am not going to complain.

Well, maybe I am going to complain, but only a little. I promise. And -- truthfully -- I would really call it whining, so if you don't want to hear it, move on...

You're still here? Thanks for lending me a shoulder. Here goes...

1. Some of you are my pals on facebook, so you've already heard this, but it bears repeating: projectile vomit from the upper bunk to a wide variety of surfaces (including people) below is so far worse than your regular old garden variety vomit. It covers considerable territory. It requires significant cleaning resources. It's especially stinky when the ac fan does not appear to be working properly and the temps have hovered around 90 for several days. As the Boy says, being sick sucks. (He was worried that I'd be mad at him for using that word, but I have to agree in this case. Being sick sucks. As does the residual laundry and other related stuff.)

2. Why do people build computer viruses and worms?! What the hell? Why is that satisfying? Couldn't you just go play another game of D&D? Every time the Boy uses my computer (surprise, surprise, he really likes Star Wars games and videos) I end up with a nasty stinking virus that necessitates the ENTIRE recreation of my system. This sucks. A lot. It means I can't work.

3. Well... Actually, that's all I really have. Things are challenging for everyone right now, and we're very lucky. A reasonable house, wonderful family, friends and neighbors, lots of fun things to do and creative, musical people around us, good food... I don't have all that much to complain about. This does not suck.

See? You made me feel better already. Thanks!

(PS -- Related story to #1: I scared things 1&2 about flus yesterday. I really scared them. I didn't mean to go that far, but I really wanted to drive my point home. Now Paul is afraid that he's going to die. Awesome parenting...)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Coming Soon to a Home Near Yours (if you live in Cheverly)

I'm starting a garden this year -- seed to plant -- old school. I have no real experience (purchased potted herbs on the front walk notwithstanding) so I'm going at this DIY-style... I don't know the rules. I probably don't like them. Hope you'll visit punkrockgardenclub frequently and keep up with this adventure...and maybe offer some advice, which I may or may not take.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Inspiration, brought to you by a 47-year old woman.

I'm totally behind.

I'm sure you've already heard of Susan Boyle, of Britain, and how she wowed the judges and audience on Britain's Got Talent (I guess this is the original version of American Idol. I dunno. I don't watch tv.) The judges and audience couldn't show less respect when she walks onstage and chats with the judges before singing "I Dreamed a Dream" from Les Miserables. The middle judge (girl in a green dress) even puts her hands up behind her head, showing Ms. Boyle her armpits, which seems particularly dismissive to me. Members of the audience (as well as the judges) sicker and roll their eyes. Then she sings. And she is surprisingly good. And they have to show her respect. It's wonderful to watch their attitudes change.

Now I don't think it's a great voice (I'm not going into all the pedagogical stuff here, but my opinions are backed by many years of vocal training and several vocal degrees from well-respected conservatories, so...) It's quite a nice voice, presence, etc., but -- like every singer I've ever known -- there's always work to be done. (Seriously, every good singer is always trying to get better. Even Renee Fleming. Even Domingo. That's part of being an artist.) But she has tremendous guts to do this and she acquits herself beautifully. It's an inspiring performance that should remind us all to take chances whenever -- and wherever -- we can.

Shameless Self Promotion

Hi everyone...I know you normally come here to read about...well, I don't really know why you come here, but I'm glad you do!

Anyhow, I've decided to celebrate the onset of actual lovely spring weather in the DC area by having a sale in my etsy shop. Six pieces are marked down: get plates with Buddhas, a snake, a human body...or small bowls featuring sharks or turtles for (relatively) cheap.

And now, back to our regularly scheduled doodling and ranting...

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Playland on 450!

Spring break...too wet and cold to go to the carnival. Also, they never seem to actually be open. Hmmm. We had to settle for playland at IKEA, which was a huge success, because Paul & Maggie got coupons for free ice cream from the nice playland ladies. They were that good.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Happy Easter!

Dark chocolate birds' nests with chow mein noodles and coconut (and jelly beans!)

Happy accident: I was melting chocolate at the same time that I was boiling eggs (I know, I know -- courting disaster! That's how I live, babies. On the edge.) Well, I accidentally dropped several chocolate chips into the boiling water. Obviously the chips were not coming out (though I did try to fish them out -- even dropping a few watery, melty chips into the melting chocolate -- I'm still amazed that it didn't seize.) The outcome? These boring little white eggs were dyed a beautiful, delicate brown. It seems like a giant shame not to leave them this way, but I think that Paul & Maggie aren't going to go for the non-garish version of Easter eggs...
We have enough candy in this house to choke several good-sized horses. I am the only person who knows where the goods are hidden. I have demonstrated remarkable self-control this week, and should probably be rewarded with Cadbury's creme eggs. Now.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Something cool me!

I know. I'm just as surprised as you are. It seems like cool stuff happens all around me, but never actually to me. Well, today is the day that changed. And I'm going to commemorate it with a glass of port. In a minute.

The cool thing... I got interviewed for a really, really, really cool online art publication, The Artery Magazine. Here's an excerpt (many, many thanks again, Laura!):

Her work is such an unexpected mix of household and sci-fi; from mushrooms to deer remains, the metallic silver discs are the perfect serving platters for an artist’s party. Kathryn has held strong against selling out by gluing puppies to the plates in order to make a few bucks, although she did do a classy butterfly ware for her mother-in-law, and she’s a completely approachable seller.

They're actually talking about me! Wowee wow wow!
(If you're curious, visit my etsy shop...)

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Movies I wanna see...

(I know. Two posts in one day? I'm obviously spinning my wheels... I just really don't feel like cleaning the house.)

Okay. I really, really, really hate to admit this, but 17 Again looks like a funny movie. I think Matthew Perry should get down on his hands and knees and thank ... well, somebody ... that the producers thought Zack Efron looked like a younger version of Matthew Perry. (In theaters April 17.)

I love Superbad. I already know that I'm going to love Adventureland. Bill Hader is in it, so I have no choice. And it has fantastically terrible late '80s music, so you know I won't be able to help myself.

I still want to see the Rainn Wilson rockstar movie, too.

I've developed the cinematic tastes of a 30-year old unemployed male stoner.

I'm learning alot from hulu. And I love those Shatner ads.

Are The Roots Jimmy Fallon's house band? Really? Don't they have world tours to do or something? I'll never know unless someone tells me. Also, Jimmy Fallon seems like someone playing a late night talk show host rather than an actual, you know...late night talk show host.

Edit: Okay, when Fallon isn't doing the straight monologue, the show's pretty funny.

Raw Food Week

Yes, you read that right. It is Raw Food Week here at pricklygirl headquarters. I know, it seems crazy. But hear me out...

I've been vegan for a little over a year, a vegetarian for about two years before that. Lately, I've found myself rationalizing. A lot. Nutter Butters? Vegan. Oreos, too. The occasional scoop of ice cream? Close enough. I don't want to waste Paul's leftover Cocoa Crisps, so if I just skim the milk off... Obviously my standards have been bent. And even when I've been strict, my eating habits have not been all that hot. Breakfast and lunch? Several giant soy cappucinos. Several meaning a minimum of three, sometimes five. And by giant, I mean giant. This is frequently the only thing I consume before 3:00pm. Not a nutrition powerhouse, but hey, soy milk is good for you, right?

This winter I found some really cool books about raw food, chief among them, Ani Phyo's "Ani's Raw Food Kitchen". These books got me thinking -- it wasn't so hard to go vegan (easier than the switch to vegetarian had been) -- so why not go one step further? When I first mentioned the idea of going raw, Charles response, in a word, was "NO". Then he hit the accelerator. End of discussion. Thank goodness for libraries. I found "Ani's Raw Kitchen" at my library and brought it home. Left it out on the table. Charles noticed. "You didn't tell me about the hot Asian chick." Suddenly, he's a little more open to raw food. (Sidenote: She has a website, too.)

I'm on Day 3 of Raw Food Week (full disclosure: I am still having 1-2 espressos each day. I am not a masochist and everyone will be happier if I stay stable.) I'm the only one in the house doing it full-time: Charles has bread, soy mayo, a little cheese. The kids are eating pretty much what they always eat, but I am aware that I'm giving everyone more vegetables than normal. We're eating good stuff: gazpacho (lots of garlic), Asian cabbage slaw with apples, ginger, and almonds (and lots of garlic), nuts, chopped salads, dried fruits, lots and lots of vegetables (and garlic). I feel surprisingly good -- occasionally a little lightheaded, but a few apricots or nuts usually do the trick. The one thing I've been jonesing for is chocolate. Well, thanks to the cookbook, I'm able to fix that problem, too....

Mexican Chocolate Mylkshake
(This is based on Ani Phyo's recipe for Chocolate Mylk. I am not good at following recipes and think -- especially with raw food -- that experimentation way more fun than following rules.)
1/2 c. almonds
1/3 c. pitted dates
4 tbs. bittersweet cocoa powder
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. chipotle chili cocoa powder
2 c. water
ice cubes

Put everything but the ice in the blender and blend at high speed until very smooth (you don't want mealy almond crumbs -- yuck.) Add the ice and whip until thick and smooth. If you're not a spicy person, forgo the chili powder, but it's a nice kick.
Yum yum yum. So good that I couldn't wait to take the photo before scarfing it down. I have no self-control.