Amusing, and accurate

Sep. 12th, 2017 09:32 am
mermaidlady: heraldic mermaid in her vanity (Default)
[personal profile] mermaidlady
Yup, this was pretty much what it was like last Tuesday.
hrj: (LHMP)
[personal profile] hrj
Today's blog features a museum exhibit catalog of the queer history of Boston. I particularly liked all the photographs of women known to have been in "Boston Marriages".

I realize, on posting this, that I completely blew past LHMP entry number 150 without any fanfare. Entry 100 corresponded closely with the release of The Mystic Marriage and I used it as an opportunity for a promotional giveaway. Depending on how many multi-blog publications I cover in the next year or so, I suppose it's possible that entry 200 might provide an opportunity to do a cross-promotion with the next Alpennia novel, Floodtide, although there's nothing even faintly resembling a projected finish date for it. My LHMP publication spreadsheet currently has about 400 titles. I suppose it's possible that I'll eventually be celebrating an Entry 500. Who knows? But let's keep our sights on more immediate goals: what sort of celebratory event should I plan for LHMP #200?

lazy Sunday

Sep. 10th, 2017 10:59 pm
robinsnest: (Default)
[personal profile] robinsnest
 I've enjoyed a marvelously lazy Sunday. I puttered and cleaned the kitchen this morning, made apple sauce and a chocolate cake. Then Rob and I vegged and watched football. I passed out with my head in his lap. The Packers won (woohoo) the Eagles won (yay I guess? Rob cares). I got out my dress for the battle of brandywine and put gussets in the underarms. I had ripped them out at Ft. Washington playing exuberant graces.

In other news I have started looking seriously for another job. Don't get me wrong I like my job, but...what I'm doing does not further my nursing skills and frankly I make half what i would most other places. And I'm tired of financially barely making it. and lately not making it :-/ Rob just hasn't been holding his end of this financial deal. So my options are push a man with a mental illness who shuts down OR find something that pays me more.  My major criteria at the moment are 1. a raise, a significant raise. Laura just took an offer elsewhere and got her salary doubled. 2. tuition assistance. The end goal is my NP. That has really solidified in my mind and I just cannot do that on my current salary. Laura gave me the contact info for her recruiter so I emailed them, and applied to a job at CHOP's specialty clinic. So I've started the poking process. Think good thoughts for me.

It's funny I was SO resistant to accepting that I needed to move on, and now that I have decided it's time I have this great NEED to move on to new challenges. I need something that pushes my nursing skills farther. I'm ready to further develop my assessment skills. 

Proactivity

Sep. 9th, 2017 04:36 pm
reynardine: (study_scholar)
[personal profile] reynardine
Cleared most of my schedule for next week, except Thursday, which has a doctor appointment and then a contractor coming by for a bid. As usual, writing documentation for QPT is tripping me up. It shouldn't be, as I actually DO RESEARCH before I do a project, and I even took pictures during the process, but it's a challenge figuring out how to present my materials and also explain things to judges who do not have specialized knowledge in my area.

I do usually get valuable feedback from them, if only a fresh perspective, and my work gets seen by others as well, so entering an arts and sciences event is useful and educational. But I do have to think about educating my judges as I write my documentation, as does anyone who has an unusual entry. There's one guy this year doing an entry on fishing flies. I'm sure he is facing the same issue!

I know I tend to procrastinate, so I'm being proactive in freeing up my time next week. The two weeks after that also look to be busy.

Day 2 of wretched headache, a mix of allergy and tension. My life is/will be changing a lot, and I'm in waiting mode right now as I see how things are coming into place. More on that as things happen. I'm just setting things into motion right now. Some will shake out, some will fall by the wayside.

Anyway, I should get back to writing.
reynardine: (evening_kaze_hikaru)
[personal profile] reynardine
Eric the Engineer sent us his Structural Engineering Report, and it was not pretty, although I suppose it could be much worse? He recommends piering around the basement, replacing the garage door header, and replacing both central columns.

No idea on cost. We'll have the first contractors come by to give us a bid on the 14th. I'll schedule a couple of others, too.

Got Eric's numbers to the garage door people, who came in with their change-order bid. We're going to have them replace the garage header, since they'll be working on that area anyway to install the new garage door. It doubles the cost of the project, woe. However, we can get that done now, since Dad helped us with the money for that. They need to get the work scheduled, but we're probably looking at late September, early October.

As for the rest, I can't figure out my financing options until I find out 1)how much it will cost; 2)whether we can spread the project out, or if it needs to all be done at once; and 3)how on earth we will pay for all of this. I'm already toying with it in my mind, but by the time we get all the bids in, we'll be well into autumn, and I don't think they can do this kind of work in the winter. So there's some time to figure all this out. Hell, we lived in the Dubuque house for nearly 12 years before repairing its foundation.

However, I think we need to move faster on this house, or more damage may occur. The problem in the Iowa house was caused a botched rehab job from the 1950's. The problem here is a result of bad architecture, unstable soil, more botched rehab (that basement window!) and a fucking earthquake due to Oklahoma fracking. Honestly, if it had not have been for the earthquake, we probably could have put this off longer.

We also have to consider ancillary costs. The landscaping around the house will either have to be moved or just pulled out, and probably we'll need some regrading done. One of the center poles is in the garage, but the other is enclosed in drywall. They'll have to tear into that, so we'll have to have that replaced, cracks repaired and then most of the interior of the house will need to be repainted. The basement carpet is already partially pulled out from water damage--we'll need to repair whatever issues are there, replace the damaged window, replace MORE drywall, MORE painting, and put in some kind of flooring there. NOT CARPET, obviously. I dunno, that south wall may need more work.

Other possible costs: plumbing inspection, probably more irrigation system repair (maybe we can pull the damn thing out?), some interior doors either repaired or replaced. Also may have to have concrete work. Oh, and what the hell, let's replace the upstairs carpet while we're at it.
reynardine: (fox_swirl)
[personal profile] reynardine
Realized I hadn't posted all week.

Highlights:

Hello, ragweed season and headaches that make my teeth hurt! I so did not miss you.

Sewing night on Tuesday went okay. Almost done with smocked apron. Not entirely happy with results--I think the smocking went okay, but I pulled it apart some when I put on the waistband and it doesn't look right. Also, the ties are barely big enough--I followed someone's advice for the length, but she's much thinner than I. It will tie, but barely.

I may pull some of it apart, re-do the smocking, add pieces to the ties to lengthen them (who's gonna look for seamlines there anyway, right?) and see if that looks better. There's no hurry on this--it actually doesn't go with anything I have. I just wanted to learn how to do smocking.

Kosode pattern is way too wide, once I put the migoro (body panels) and okumi (front overlap panels) together. I think the okumi width looks about right, but the migoro is way too big. In one way, that's good news because there was some fabric I wanted to use that would have been too narrow, but now I think I might be able to use it. So I'm taking apart what I basted together (thrift store cotton) and cutting down the migoro a bit, then trying again.

No, I probably won't have something new to wear for Queen's Prize next weekend. I hate rushing sewing projects.

Working on Queen's Prize documentation. Outline is done and I should be finished with the writing this weekend. Trying to figure out a way I can stage it so it looks good. I think Uji (the scroll's recipient, who it turns out will also be one of the judges*) may bring the scroll with him. I was thinking of buying a standing folding screen to display it (and some of the drafts I did), but Bob nixed that idea.

*Yeah, normally he'd disqualify himself. But Queen's Prize is a novice event and he was the only one with Japanese studies experience willing to drive that far south. Besides, I tend to ask the judges not to grade me with points, but just give me feedback.

One of my other judges, Aiden, is a calligraphy/illumination Laurel, who I already know. The other one, Catalina, has a Laurel in Islamic culture (IIRC, her focus was on costuming and cooking?)--we've met but I don't really know her very well.

Music night at Margaurite's went well, although I ended up playing tenor when I had mostly practiced soprano. The fingering is the same, but you have to spread your fingers out more on the tenor, and after a while, your hands cramp up! I'm told I will get used to it. Evidently, my recorder is too shrill--Roderick lent me one of his extra plastic soprano recorders to use for now. Much mellower sound. Still practicing. Margaurite said I should be up to speed within six months or so. Until then, I just try not to be too disruptive.

LOL, Tsuki thinks my recorder is too shrill, too. I start practicing and she will dash out from wherever she's been sleeping and meow at me! It's so cute.

Shodo lesson also went well, although wow, I'm up late on Tuesday with the sewing and music, then up early the next day for shodo. We've started carving inkan (signature seals). Tony has done a lot of studying on the subject, so it's been interesting. He does tend to prefer using the dremel tool to hand-carving, but wants me to learn both methods. I've carved wax and linoleum, but not stone, so learning to use a chisel has been interesting. It's really cool, though. I definitely have some things I want to try to do with this (beyond designing my own inkan).

Tony also wants me to branch out to sumi-e painting. He's not an expert himself--it's just something he plays with, but for doing SCA scrolls, it would be a useful skill. And we're going to play with paper-mounting and making emakimono (vertical) and kakemono (horizontal) scrolls and experiment with paste recipes. So between carving inkan, learning basic sumi-e techniques, scroll-making and continuing my actually calligraphy brush-work, I will be busy!
mermaidlady: heraldic mermaid in her vanity (Default)
[personal profile] mermaidlady
Two recipes for dinner last night. I'm getting close to the end!

Fashionable Food: Seven Decades of Food Fads, Sylvia Lovegren (2005).

I have a love/hate relationship with this book. It's full of the kind of historical recipes I love, but the author comes off as snarky and dismissive about many of the weird trends in American food.

There were so many things to choose from: Spam-Fruit Cocktail Party Loaf, Tang Pie, Stuffed Edam Cheese, Hot Crab Dip... I picked Spinach Salad with Cheddar Cheese Dressing from the 1970s. It was originally from The Proud Popover, a chain restaurant once in Faneuil Hall.

The dressing is mayo blended with Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, oil, white wine vinegar, and lemon juice, then mixed with grated cheddar and chopped green onion. I had all the ingredients, so win.

The salad itself is fresh spinach, sliced mushrooms, crumbled bacon, and red onion rings.

Since the author described the dressing as "goopy" (all the dishes from the '70s were "goopy", "gloppy", "gooshy"), I expected the dressing to be much thicker than it was, but it was a perfectly pourable dressing and not even all that cheesy.

Verdict: I liked it and it did taste like my childhood. I would have cut the mushrooms much thinner, but [personal profile] newman had bought the pre-sliced ones in hopes of saving me time.

I want to try so much more from this book.

Betty Crocker's Picture Cook Book, Betty Crocker (1950).

[profile] jducouer gave me this vintage cookbook for my birthday. I decided on Cream Puffs because I had never made them before and the cookbook I'm supposed to be working on is going to include a recipe.

Choux pastry is so easy to make. Boil water and butter, add flour. Remove from heat and beat in eggs. Mound on a baking sheet and bake. Let cool.

We served them filled with a blend of sweetened ricotta and marscapone and a ton of fresh berries. Someday I'll have to try to make pastry cream.

128/130, 14 this year, 2 left to go!

Of course, I just made a tactical error. Two of the cookbooks from the last entry are part of a series (of which I have 4) and I just bought 19 more on eBay. They should be arriving any day now...

Please invite me to parties so I can bring stuff to inflict on you!

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gurdymonkey

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