June 25, 2009


400+ items in Ravelry Queue

Don't get it. How about this?

400+ items in Ravelry Queue_Zoom

Nuff Said.

June 24, 2009

The Face of Evil

This is the face of evil.

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Don't be fooled by the innocent look.

Suzanne is evil and I'm the idiot who pays her to be evil.

I pay her to beat me up twice a week. I call her my "Personal Trainer."

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Why am I doing this? Because I have been asked to be in a wedding next April and I'll be damned if I'm the biggest chick in the group. If there is a single, cute groomsman, I'm determined to look my best.

Hence, the need for assistance.

In one month, she's help me drop 11 inches.


June 11, 2009

Life is getting me down.

I'm trying very hard not to get depressed.

I've been unemployed once....right out of college. After I ended up taking a job well below my skills and abilities, I vowed I would never be without a job again. If need be, I would always be ready to cast my resume out into the world, pull up stakes, and leave without a second glance.

That vow looks more and more difficult to fulfill right now.

Unemployment in Manatee County is around 11.5%. The fact that I have a job right now makes me one of the lucky ones. I have my health (and health coverage), I have some savings, and I have a home.

I should be happy.

However, every day that goes by at my job seems to take forever. I like what I do; I'm no longer enchanted by the people I work with. The client doesn't see the value in the services that either of the User Liaisons perform; we've been told our jobs are definitely on the line. They want to start transitioning the department back in July, so I have less than three weeks to get a nibble. During one of the most critical employment periods in the country, I have to start a job search....hopefully for a job with 75-100% travel. Yeah, I know, good luck.

So tomorrow I need to spend the day applying for jobs. I've resolved to apply for jobs inside and outside of higher education. I have an MPA, I have skills and abilities, I am willing. If I didn't have this house right now, I could pack up and leave at a moment's notice. I think that is the worst part of this recession; I'm not upside down in my mortgage b/c I bought last December but I know that if I put this house on the market right now, I wouldn't have any takers...unless I simply rented it.

I need a fallback option...Anyone have any ideas?

June 8, 2009

Organic Gardening is Pretty

My Square Foot Garden is a mixed blessing. Because I didn't get the seedlings into the ground fast enough, most of my plants died. The ones that survived are beautiful.

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Jalapenos (or Serranos...I'm not sure)

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Basil and Parsley (and Cilantro in the bottom corner)

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The Corn is really my pride and joy. My grandfather grew up on a farm for most of his childhood and he is the family expert on gardening....and he's jealous of the fact that I have corn in my garden.... :)

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This is what excited me...TOMATOES!!!
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I think this is the best photo of the day...a baby cucumber

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I forgot what kind of squash this is....Now it's kind of exciting to find out later....

I'm getting excited about nature.

June 7, 2009

Baking in the Heat

For some reason, I've had more success baking this month.

This is surprising, given that this is the weather outside


Hurricane Season in Florida started on June 1st and the weather is determined to live up to the reputation. It has rained 4 times today.

I hate when it rains.

Anyway, Feng's 50th Birthday party was on Thursday.


I spent three days trying to figure out what to make, then I finally decided on the Strawberry Chiffon Cake that Smitten Kitchen had posted.

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Her's looks better (of course) but I didn't think mine looked too bad. I think he thanked me for the cake at least 10 times (no joke). I thought the cake was good, but not quite the knockout I wanted.

Today, I made Dorie Greenspan's Orange-Berry Muffins....

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It's taking everything I have not to eat all 12 in one sitting....

Two is the limit today....

I'm glad I'm baking today. It's taking my mind off the fact that my job is in jeopardy. I have to find a new job ASAP but I'm having a mental block trying to complete my resume with the details of my current job. However, I'm determined to finish it and get some applications in before I go to bed tonight...

If you pray, pray for me. If you don't send good vibes my way.

June 3, 2009

I've never had so much difficulty

keeping my stomach settled or trying to find a new pattern to start.

I really like Henry.

But at 452 stitches, it's a beast to knit. Undeterred, I cast on with Rowan Cashcotton, miscounted and ended up with 490 stitches.

That should have been my clue to stop.

But I kept going and finished 3.5 rows before I realized the following:

  1. I would run out of yarn before I finished this.
  2. My daddy doesn't wear pink.
  3. I don't like cotton yarn, even cotton yarn that has cashmere in it.
  4. This is cute, but cotton scarves don't do crap for warmth.
So now I'm frogging it and trying to find something to knit. So now I'm casting on for Spring Forward.

Yup, I'm back to my old standby: socks.
This pair is for Rowena, who recently lost her dog.

June 2, 2009

Overthinking the Simple

My boss's 50th birthday is coming up and, in acknowledgement, the office is going to throw him a potluck party. Usually I'm relegated to bringing Brisket , which has become an office favorite and cemented me into that role. However, that Brisket is a $30, 8 hour affair. I don't have the time or energy.

So, I planned on bringing the cake. Since my love affair with yeast and baking began, I've been on a baking kick. This will be the first time I've had willing (probably eager) volunteers for taste testing.

I just checked Dorie Greenspan's Baking out of the library yesterday and I'm anxious to play with it (although I can already tell I will need to buy my own copy). I need to figure out which cake I'm going to make for the party on Thursday....

Smitten Kitchen's Strawberry Chiffon Cake?

Pioneer Woman's Strawberry Shortcut Cake?

Some unknown goodie from Dorie????

Plant City, FL is known nationwide for their strawberries (unless you happen to get California's overgrown behemoths). They are sweet, tender, and juicy and right now is the perfect time to pick some up from the fruit stand near my house.

Which closes at four.....and I don't get off until 6.....darn....

I have to figure this out.