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Preview: quilting... and the rest of life

quilting... and the rest of life



sometimes life gets in the way of creativity.



Updated: 2017-01-01T07:19:02.244-05:00

 



Queen Sized Trauma

2011-04-04T15:16:35.937-04:00

Last week, I went to CVS in the morning to get some nylons. First off, I had no idea where they are because I'm pretty sure the last time I bought nylons for myself was when I was in dance classes and I needed them for my recital. So I find the nylons, and realize there are way too many options... control top, control leg, control toe, sheer, nude, blah blah blah... and then I look at the back of the box and realize that I am right on that cusp between size "B" and "Q" (yeah, that stands for Queen, FML). However, based on my height and size, I fall into their "B" category, so that's what I get. Then I stand in line for what feels like hours because they have one cashier and the only people that go to CVS in the mornings are, apparently, me and 80 year old women. So I get to work and put all my stuff down and head into the bathroom to put on the nylons. I get them half way up my calf and I start to struggle. I am thinking, what the h-e-double-hockey-sticks is going on here?! I check the box and it says "B", but it also says "sheer control" soemthing or other. I think oh hell, I'm not going to be able to put these things on. so I continue pulling these things up my legs in the opes that there is a little bit of give as I get them up over my thunder thighs. Unfortunately, there's not, so it feels like I'm getting my thigh amputated as I continue to struggle to fit into these demon hose. I finally get everything up over my ass and as I make one final pull, my thumb rips through the nylons and sends a run down to about my knee. Now, not only do I have a run in my brand new hose, but I have a large blob of inner thigh trying to escape through this new hole in the hose. I say fuck it and head back to my desk. I sit down, and the top of the nylons immediately rolls and starts to cut off circulation to my intestines and other vital organs in my lower abdomen. so the long and short of it... apparently I really am a Queen.



and so it begins. or ends?

2010-07-19T16:48:15.169-04:00

on tuesday, july 6, 2010, I was at scrimmage practice for roller derby. we had a bout on saturday (my first real bout!) and it was a mandatory practice. it was running from 7:30p-9:30p. at 9:20p, I fell. and not just your run-of-the-mill-oh-gee-I-have-an-ouchie-on-my-bum type fall. My left foot caught on another skater (who was stationary at the time), my right foot kept moving (it was on wheels, after all), and my knees just buckled inward. in my right knee, I felt a pop. in my head, I heard, "fuck." [editor's note: it's ok. I still cringe when I run through the event in my mind. which I do. a lot. I think, what should I have done differently? I think, if I had worked harder the three weeks prior to that point, could this have been avoided? I think, what does this mean? but I digress.]at 9:25p, I was laying on my back, knee pulled into my chest, scared to move it. it was a strange sensation. I didn't feel... pain. it was more the knowledge that something was seriously fucked up. I hadn't imagined that pop. it was real. but what happened? I have been playing organized sports for (24) years and have never had an injury. this was foreign to me. several other skaters were assisting me and eventually I had my leg straight, away from my chest, and I was off the track with the knee elevated, courtesy of my helmet. "oh, it's just a tweak, I'm sure. it'll just hurt for the next few weeks when you fall on your knees. just rest it and you'll be fine for saturday, but keep us posted."at 9:45p, I was making my way home. my knee... I didn't know what to think. I just knew it hurt. and that I needed to get home and R.I.C.E. it.on wednesday, july 7, I went to the walk-in clinic. when I'd woken up, my worst fears were confirmed. it was only getting worse. the "diagnosis" was "knee trauma with a possible ACL microtear" and I was told to go home and stay there for the next 48-72 hours. "if it still hurts on monday, come back in and we'll do some further testing on it." this was the realization that I would have to miss my first ever roller derby bout. I cried.on monday, july 12, I went back to the walk-in clinic. I still couldn't fully straighten my leg and it hurt to walk on it (though I was using an ace bandage to help with the compression). I was using a cane to get around. I was told to stay home again for 24-48 hours, and that night, I went for an MRI.on tuesday, july 13, I got the results from my MRI. I had a partial tear in the ACL and two partial tears of the MCL. I cried.on thursday, july 15, I went to the orthopedic doctor. I spoke with the nurse practitioner. due to a mix-up with the radiologist's office, the CD with the MRI films weren't forwarded to the ortho's office. based on the written report, and my desire to continue to be active (even if derby isn't in my future), surgery was deemed the best option. however, the films may indicate a smaller tear than anticipated and thusly, no need for surgery. but we'll cross that bridge on friday at my follow-up appointment.today is monday, july 19. I had my first physical therapy appointment. for the first time in almost two weeks, I was able to straighten out my leg to almost full extension. [editor's note: of course, not without a little bit of coaxing... I had heat on it for five minutes before.] after that, I bent my knee almost up to my chest. you know what that means? I can get better. did it hurt? fuck yes it did. was is worth it? absolutely.I know that this is a long road. but I am prepared to tackle it. it's not always going to be easy, and I'm sure that das will want to kill me, or at least potentially cut off my leg, many times during this several month rehabilitation period. I'm sure that physical therapy will be harder some days than others. I know that I will be envious that other people can do things that I can't (yet).and maybe people are right... and this IS life's way of saying to slow the fuck down.[...]



as if you didn't know already...

2009-09-17T12:29:02.042-04:00

I am a huge dork. I love video games; I love geeky science stuff; and yes, I love bowling. my birthday present this past year was going to the live nationally televised bowling championships (and yes, I was on TV with my amazing sign that my hubs made). it was awesome.

I have been in bowling leagues for a few years now, but it was always with das. he was the "bowler" and I relied on his expertise to guide me when things weren't working out well. he's the one who bought me a new ball (for the previous birthday) and really helped me in improving my game. I mean, with that ball, I was able to increase my average almost twenty pins. I was the most improved female bowler in last year's league, and ended up with the third highest average. I owe a lot of that to him.

but now. he has abandoned me. I'm left, alone, to try and figure out for myself, what I need to do to improve, or, at the very least, stay consistent. he's sticking with only one league this year... and of course, he's opting for the mens' league instead of the co-ed league that we were doing together. sure, I'm a little disappointed, but I think that maybe... it's exactly what I needed. I needed to make these decisions for myself. do I slow down my speed? do I move over a board or two? how do I adjust so that my ball rolls straighter?

I answered all of those questions last night. on my own. the first night of bowling... I called him. I said, "I can't do this." but this week... it was as though I was my own bowler. I actually improved over the course of the evening. I posted a 158-161-168 for the night. that's a 485 series. I'm now up to a 153 average after three weeks... and am getting back up to where I should be... where I was when I was bowling with das by my side, instructing me.

I am glad that my husband and I can share in geekdom love such as this. the family that bowls together, stays together, right? sure, I'll miss him on wednesday nights. but what I won't miss... is that dependency on his skill. because, baby, I've got my own. so watch out... here I come!

PS) also excited about the new ball I'm getting tonight. number one choice is the hammer black widow sting; second choice is the storm dimension. so we'll see how that goes... :D



fun things I can do...

2009-04-08T15:58:50.157-04:00

...now that my basement doesn't retain water like pregnant lady. :)

> quilt

> organize my fabric and patterns and whatnot

> run around in circles chasing my dog

> plan how I'm going to decorate the basement

> store things (so that das will stop complaining about stuff being messy)

> play darts

ok, so it's not a ridiculously long list right now. we can't really do too much because we can't really afford to finish it. it'd be probably a grand or more just to put in a floating floor (which das and I could do). and we'd need to put in some different lighting, too, so that it's not just that typical basement lighting. you know... the light bulb with the pull string that's 400 feet long but made of some string that breaks when you look at it wrong so you end up having to lick your fingers and just screw the bulb on and off anyway. yeah, that kind. so overall... it'll probably be a while before anything major happens.

but at least in the meantime, das will be dry when he does the laundry. :)



happy passover!

2009-04-08T14:00:15.594-04:00

since tomorrow night at sundown marks the first night of passover, I thought I would pass along a tasty treat (from my fav website king arthur flour) that I will be making for das's family's passover seder. I was asked to bring dessert. because of the dietary rules and regs of passover, that rules out anything containing flour, which is, for the most part, your cakes, muffins, pies... you know... anything potentially easy. so I bring to you a sweet dessert that you may even be putting together for those non-passover days, too: chocolate-dipped coconut macaroons!

for the macaroons:
> generous (5) c. shredded unsweeted coconut
> 1-1/2 c. coconut cream - (1) 16 oz can
> 1/4 tsp. salt
> optional: 1/2 tsp. coconut flavor (like vanilla, but coconut instead)
> optional: 1/3 c. coconut milk powder

for the coating:
> 1-1/2 c. semisweet chocolate chips
> 2-1/2 tb. margarine (butter is dairy and thus can't be consumed with meat)
> 2 tb. honey (recipe calls for light corn syrup, but that's not kosher - literally!)

directions:
> preheat oven to 350* - lightly grease a baking sheet or line one with parchment
> in a medium bowl, mix together coconut, coconut cream, and salt (if you are adding the coconut flavor, now's the time!). stir until completely combined.
> if you are adding the coconut milk powder, do it now. while it's not necessary to add this, it really holds the coconut balls together while scooping. it just makes life a touch easier!
> drop the sticky mixture in ping-pong sized balls (that's about 1-1/2") onto the baking sheets (a cookie scoop works well here so you don't have to touch it a lot). you can place them fairly close together on the pan (3/4" - 1" apart); they won't be expanding.
> bake for about (10) minutes. note: they won't brown (or very very very little at most) so don't keep them in there until they do!
> remove from oven and cool completely before coating.
> for coating: heat the chocolate chips, margarine, and honey until the chips are soft. try the microwave, or a saucepan on low heat. dip half of the cooled macaroon into the chocolate. set it back on the baking sheet and allow the chocolate to set.
> to store, place in one layer in a closed container. they should keep for 2-3 days, but that's only if they last that long...



frozen food

2009-04-03T13:09:53.667-04:00

ok. so it's friday... and I'm doing tasty tuesday. get over it. :)

yesterday was my friend's birthday and tomorrow we're going over to her house for some food, beer, and basketball (uconn's in the final four - GO HUSKIES!). so... I decided to make something that would really be a hit with everyone, but wouldn't take me a lot of time. I found the perfect little dessert... that I can't wait to dig into tomorrow: the buster sundae pie.
I found this recipe in my inbox a few weeks ago courtesy of pillsbury.com's celebration of pi day (on 3/14... get it?). as soon as I saw it, I knew it needed to be made. here you go!

crust
> 1 refrigerated pie crust (from 15-oz box), softened as directed on box

filling
> 4 c. (1 qt) vanilla ice cream, slightly softened
> 1/2 c. caramel topping
> 1/2 c. fudge topping
> 3/4 c. Spanish peanuts (4 oz)
> optional: additional peanuts, if desired

directions:
> heat oven to 450°F. bake pie crust as directed on box for one-crust baked shell, using 9-inch glass pie plate. cool on cooling rack 15 minutes. (note: obviously, it's a pillsbury recipe, so they'll reference their own product, but don't feel obligated)
> layer 2 cups of the ice cream in crust. drizzle with 1/4 cup of the caramel topping and 1/4 cup of the fudge topping. sprinkle with peanuts. layer remaining 2 cups ice cream over peanuts.
> freeze 4 hours or overnight.
serving:
> drizzle individual servings with remaining caramel topping and fudge topping. sprinkle with additional peanuts. cover and freeze any remaining pie.

so that's the pillsbury version... let me tell you what *I* did. :)

ingredients: pre-made chocolate pie crust, vanilla ice cream (softened), spanish peanuts, caramel syrup, chocolate syrup

directions: fill the bottom of the pie crust with some softened ice cream. throw a healthy handful or seven of peanuts onto the ice cream. drizzle the chocolate and caramel syrups over the peanuts. put some more of the softened ice cream on top. top again with another healthy handful of peanuts plus more chocolate and caramel syrup. put in the freezer and let set overnight.

the downside to using the pre-made crust is that it's an 8" crust instead of a 9" crust... and so mine maybe sort of kind of overflowed a little bit. BUT... that's just going to make it more tasty later, yes? so if you do use the pre-made crust, I would suggest putting it into a glass pie plate (9") foil and all so that you can catch some drippings.

ENJOY! :D






what's cookin'

2009-03-24T17:52:23.964-04:00

in an attempt to get back into the blogging swing of things, and to kind of liven up the blog (since I lost a follower due to my lack of updating, I assume)... I am going to start the "tasty tuesdays" program. :) I very much enjoy cooking and baking and food in general... so I feel as though I'd like to share this. I can't guarantee that these recipes are any good... I'm sure it'll be a mix and match of ones I've tried and ones I want to try. but I'm going to guarantee I won't be putting up anything that straight up sucks.oh, and even though this was started as a "quilt blog"... last time I checked... quilters still needed to eat too. unless of course you figured out a way to just sit and quilt and not need sustinence at all... but I don't think jen has shared her secret yet. ;)so, even though it's a week past... *last* tuesday was st. patrick's day. and this is the inaugural week of tasty tuesdays... so I think I'll do two tasty treats for today. :)first off, let's start with a rough recipe for guinness crock pot corned beef with colcannon. I was informed by an irishman currently residing in ireland that corned beef dinner... isn't really irish. I mean, ok yeah it is... but it's more irish-american... a creation that came to be once the irish immigrants arrived here in the states. but regardless of where it came from, it is worthy of tasty tuesday.guinness crock pot corned beef> 2-4lb flat cut corned beef (flat cut is a bit more expensive, but WAY more worth it)note: if your corned beef has no seasoning packet included, just add some whole cloves (5-6), some black peppercorns (5-6), and a bay leaf, OR just 1-2T. pickling spices, if you have them> 1c. brown sugar> 1-2 bottles of guinness stout alenote: I think it would be interesting to try out some different brands, or some different flavors, more specifically chocolate stout. stouts are inherently bitter, hence the brown sugar, but I imagine cutting back on the brown sugar yet using a chocolate stout would produce similarly tasty resultsin your crock pot, add (1) bottle of guinness (or other stout) and your brown sugar. mix together until the sugar dissolves. add in your corned beef. if you have a larger crock pot (like I do) and your corned beef is not even really touching the liquid, then add another bottle of guinness (or other stout). when I did mine, I went so far as to completely cover the corned beef (using three bottles). it was probably overkill, and next time I make it, I'll probably settle for two. set your crock pot for low for the next (8) hours... and just leave it! don't lift the lid... don't check on it. it will be fine. I promise! after time expires... take the meat out and place on a plate, or cutting board. cover with foil. when your colcannon is finished... and you are prepping to cut your meat... make sure to cut corned beef AGAINST the grain, or else it will just fall to pieces.colcannon> 1/4-1/3 head of fresh cabbage> 4-5 small to medium potatoes> 2T. unsalted butter (for sautéing)> 3-4T. unsalted butter, cubed (for flavoring potatoes)> 1/4-1/3c. milk> dash of kosher salt and fresh ground pepperpeel and cut your potatoes into about 2" cubes (or close to it - it's not an exact science). place them in a pot and add water until the potatoes are just covered. bring to a boil. [I usually add some kosher salt at this point, not to increase the boiling speed, but to season the potatoes while they are cooking] in the meantime, shred your cabbage into strips. this is where my mandolin slicer came in useful, but I have also just used my veggie peeler on an angle with similar results. heat a pan over medium to medium high heat and begin to let your butter melt. once your pan is hot and the butter is melted, but not browning, add the cabbage and a pinch of salt. sauté the cabbage for about 5-6 minutes. at this point, your potatoes should be cooked through. drain them and mash, adding in the cube[...]



congrats to random visitor from february 18th!

2009-02-24T13:38:07.753-05:00

I guess I hit 1000. hits, that is. I don't know who it was... but if you were surfing my blog on wednesday, february 18th... it could have been you. congrats! you win... well, nothing. other than the satisfaction of being number 1000. seriously though... I have "three" jobs to pay my basic bills... I don't have the extra cash-cash for even a small gift. and well, I don't know who you are anyway... so I guess it wouldn't even matter. :)

things have been insane lately. things for the bridal shower; things for soccer; things for home; things for work. ugh. hopefully after april... things will start to calm down. the soccer season will have started; the wedding will be over; job #3 will be "off-season"... and maybe I'll be able to get back to some quilting and stamping. :) now, my downtime pretty much consists of lounging on the couch wishing I wasn't so tired. (sigh)

so I'm thinking of putting in a garden in my backyard. not flowers... but some leafy greens, tomatoes, cucumbers, and green beans. with only four things, the garden doesn't need to be large, but it'll still provide enough tasty produce for the summer. now does anyone know how to grow these things? because I *so* don't have a green thumb. :) but I'd like to try...

anything else that I should add to my plate while I'm feeling ambitious? :)

lastly, in this minor update, I wanted to thank those who volunteered to send some green fabric for my friend's quilt. I will email you with the sizes we need (so you don't need to send twelve yards when all I need is an eighth of a yard)... just let me know if you're still willing to help out!



calling all quilters

2009-02-05T14:59:18.354-05:00

dear quilting friends of the internet,
this past november my friend asked me to create something for her: a quilt. this may be nothing special, but this quilt *was* different. her aunt, after a long-fought battle, succumbed to cancer earlier that week. she wanted me to do a signature quilt, a healing quilt, for the friends and family members. I quickly got together some muslin rectangles and some pigma pens for her as there wasn't enough time to finish up all the blocks fully before the service. now, I have the signature blocks, but not the rest of the fabric to finalize the block. she would have wanted greens. that was her favorite.

sure, I could go out and have my friend buy some fabric, but I thought that maybe I could ask the internet. everyone is so pro-stash-busting... that maybe that random piece of green you still have that doesn't really go with anything... could be donated to a quilt that will help a family remember someone who was taken from their lives too early. even just one 5" square would help. even something from your uglies - this will become a quilt that is loved - the fabric will find a good home.

if you are interested in help me out in creating this, please let me know. there's no obligation. I'm not asking for yards. just a couple of 5" squares would be perfect. :)

thank you from me, my friend, and her family.

warmest regards,
kt



spoonful of sugar

2009-01-29T00:28:02.908-05:00

there's a lot going on in my world.
  • I am finally trying to make heads or tails of my "hometown" quilt guild website.
  • I am helping out some friends with some print materials for their respective jobs/events.
  • I am picking up the slack at work b/c my coworker just opened her own wedding invitation business and is using some of her work time to take care of some details here and there (or just gets easily distracted by searching for new paper stock and invitation ideas on the web).
  • I have three jobs.
  • I am trying to cook more complete meals at home rather than throwing something together at the last minute (read: hamburger helper).
  • I am helping to plan a bachelorette party.
  • I am preparing for a wedding shower.
  • I am the newly-elected vice president of my local soccer league... thusly I am in charge of retaining the old (and obtaining new) sponsorship plus plan three weekends worth of preseason clinics.
  • I need to finish cleaning our office so I can have space for all of the information regarding the above tasks.

then there's the stuff that I just want to do...

  • finish the flannel pillowcases for my friends' children before it gets too late for flannel pillowcases
  • spend some time knitting
  • wear more makeup
  • upload more photos to shutterfly (of our wedding, for example, and of ireland)
  • do yoga
  • take walks (with and without bowser)
  • spend time with das
  • read more books (including "unstuck", even though I don't feel stuck anymore)
  • watch movies I haven't seen, and some that I have seen
  • take a cooking class

I realize that the first list is, well, really a bunch of stuff that could probably fall under "wants" as well. no one ever said that I had to have three jobs. I could deal without the other two. but I like bartending. no one forced me to do the website for quilt guild. but I wanted to help bring our ladies into the technology age. my friends didn't say I had to help them. but they're my friends, so why wouldn't I offer? I wasn't forced into leadership in soccer. but I wanted to be a part of that which organizes and supports our league.

the short answer is... that there is no short answer. some say that life is too short to go to bed early and sit on the couch. some say that if you want to do it, then your time will come. some say that you have to worry about yourself and make YOU happy.

I say as crazy and hectic as my life is right now... I'm ok with it. because I know... my time won't come... it's already here. really... life's too short to think otherwise.

what do you think?




Ho. Ly. CRAP!

2009-01-22T15:46:10.259-05:00

so this week... whoa.

I don't really like to give specifics about work b/c you never know who is paying attention to random blogs. but holy crapola. it has been so busy. which, I guess, is good... but just b/c MY department is busy does not mean that our actual BUSINESS is doing well.

I quote things. therefore, not everything that I see will become an actual job. so it kind of makes me nervous when I overhear things like the satellite location is low on people because there was no work for them to do so they were all sent home... or how there are quite a few people (who I assume were) on the upper register of payroll who have been downsized. our company has always said that they've never had a major layoff... which may be true... I guess they just do it all stealth-like and only one-by-one so that it doesn't seem like a major layoff. :) I am not scared for my position, though I do know of people for whom I am worried.

so, in light of this... I GOT ANOTHER JOB. well, not to quit this and do something else. I actually like my job. I got another bartending job. so I have one that essentially runs from september to march/april... one that runs from march/april to early winter... and then the full-time job.

no one can again comment upon my lack of quilting, crafting, etc... not even me. :)

I am looking forward to the challenge of this new bartending gig... it should be a lot of fun and I expect to learn a lot. not that I don't in my other job, but really... it's a completely different atmosphere. it'll just be different junk laying claim to my memory. yay!

ok. back to work. the world just needed to know where I was.

or maybe I just needed to tell the world where I was.



reason number 437 why I am awesome

2009-01-19T13:33:28.058-05:00

and humble too. :)das had bought me a bread machine for my birthday eons ago and while I'd used it, it was mostly for pizza dough and the occasional loaf of french bread. as I'd mentioned (numerous times) before, I didn't have a ton of space at the old house... and I never really thought about the constant need for yeast. however, that all changed at christmas when I got a lot of things from the king arthur flour catalog. well, not a lot, but some. I got things that I *really* wanted. I *really* wanted them because I wanted to explore the world of baking much more than I had in the past. I can remember, before days of my "mother's" bread machine (totally a homer ball gift from my dad), my father would make loaves of bread and let them rise behind the woodstove during the winter. we would end up with a bazillion loaves of fresh baked bread... most of which I didn't partake of because, well, I wasn't a giant bread fan I guess. there are still lots of breads I'm not a fan of... pumpernickel and rye (I can't stand caraway - blech!) jump to mind. I love wheat and white breads, and especially potato bread. there's just something about the texture of a hearty piece of potato bread that makes me just feel good. so anyway, I wanted to do these for myself. I didn't want to have to rely on my grocery bread aisle when I knew that if I worked at it, I could produce something even better (or at least just as good).so, in an attempt to fuel yet another of my random desires of life... my mom and dad got me some things to help (plus a few other things that were for other baking endeavors):SAF red instant yeast - fast acting without need to proof or dissolve ityeast measuring spoon - equivalent to one packet of instant yeast from the storeairtight locking yeast canister - fits perfectly in the door of my fridgebaker's special dry milk - makes your yeast breads rise higher and makes them softerbakewell cream baking powderairtight locking baking powder canistermini pumpkin cheesecake baking pan - ok, so it's not bread, but I *really* wanted this :)so I made a loaf of bread the other night. nothing major... it turned out OK but seemed a little low. I think part of it was the lack of warm places to put a rising loaf of bread... but I saw a trick on "good eats" that I'll utilize in the future: put a heating pad on low in between one larger bowl and the bowl your dough is in. it was a bit on the dense side, though it made for a hearty sandwich bread for our paninis... not so much for just a sandwich in general... a bit too crumbly. I would probably opt for some different recipes.and then, because I was feeling so confident about my newly acquired new-and-improved baking skills... I decided to make bagels. the recipe seemed rather easy and I could use my bread machine for the dough, which is way super easy to do (and a feature I never really realized existed and now plan to use A LOT in the future). they came out as you would expect a newbie bagel maker's bagel to come out... not the least bit smooth and not quite as brown as one would desire... but they tasted so good! my first bagel making attempt was several years ago and it was an utter failure. like major epic fail. :) they were so tiny... and I don't think they rose at all. but these new ones were HUGE... and I topped them with onion and garlic for a magnificent taste. I plan to make A LOT of these in the future... they only make really eight at a time, which is overall pretty decent for the week in the morning. too many more than that and I'm sure I'd be handing them out at work so they didn't get stale (not that anyone at work would be disappointed to receive free homemade bagels ha ha).so anyway... my new love of baking is the new reason I'm awesome. :) we all knew there really [...]



go figure

2009-01-09T15:02:10.388-05:00

ok... so of course, shortly after I make these grandiose plans to post and whatnot... I get sick. it was a pretty busy weekend... then tuesday I woke up with a bad sore throat. I slathered on the choraseptic but, alas, I still woke up wednesday feeling like ass personified. then thursday... I stayed home from work. I slept until 12:30ish and then watched food network all day. I hate sick days where you're actually sick. (sigh) so today... here I am at work. the joy. I feel, again, pretty craptastic... but I know I'm "well enough" to be here. however, I already know I have negative desire to do anything else when I get home. I thought I'd be able to finish up the taking down of christmakah... all that's left is to dismantle the hanukah bush (aka christmas tree) but I have no energy. I'm afraid if I take a nap... well, that just won't end well later when I try to sleep and fail miserably. (sigh) we'll see I guess.

I have been avoiding my sewing room lately. I use the term "room" lightly as it really is just our basement. I really just don't want to work down there is really what it comes down to. it's dark - the lighting is really poor. it's cold and damp - the water at the other end of the basement keeps it chilly (though there's no heat down there anyway) and the dehumidifier can only do so much. and it's musty - the damp, musty odor that has wafted down to my end of the basement really just sucks (that and the dog decided that he didn't want to "go" outside because it was too cold, so he opted to use random spots in the basement without our knowledge [none of my fabric though] so it has that "vet office" smell to it, too). I don't want to complain because yes, I'm thankful that I even have a potential space to work... but it's just disheartening to go down there. I know my machine is lonely... I've barely touched her since my retreat back in NOVEMBER. yeah, I said it... november. I stitched up some pillowcases for my friend's son, my mother-in-law, and my mom for the holidays (plus some others that I am almost done with)... but other than that... really nothing (oh, and my hanukah blocks for the kosher pickles block exchange, but really that's it). I know we're going to "fix it" soon... we are having waterproofing specialists come and give us estimates, but it's A LOT of money that we don't really have laying around (even though we could finance it). I know that would help. but until then... I don't know what to do to motivate myself to hang out in the Quilting Dungeon on any sort of regular basis.

thoughts? comments? suggestions? lotto numbers? rich great aunt in need of a beneficiary for her millions of dollars?

I think my only option is this: the great pillsbury bake-off contest. I think that is really the best solution. I mean, aren't baked goods really the answer to all of life's grueling times and tough questions? I don't see why not. and it's just a million dollars. I think I could get a waterproofed basement for at least that, yes? and maybe a new machine... and new janome would be nice. :)

so... anyone got a good recipe that I can tweak for this? I swear... I'll give you credit. and maybe a couple thousand your way for your troubles. :)



back in the saddle again

2009-01-02T17:27:57.553-05:00

hello internet. it's me. kt. you may remember me from november... the last time I posted. and perhaps a few times before that. well, I hope you'll welcome me back into your good graces as I attempt to rekindle the relationship we had oh so long ago. I know we've been through a rather tumultuous time as of late... I, well, have been neglecting you, internet. you've been there for me but I haven't really responded... I've left you in the dark.

please know that I am truly sorry for my behavior and I will certainly do my best to communicate with you... well, more regularly shall we say.

yes, yes... I know. you've heard it before, and yes. I know... you're not trusting. you've lost the ability to believe after being burned before. but give me just one more chance... one more opportunity to show you, internet, that yes... I can stay true to my word.

I may be a changed woman... but internet, I need you. I always have. I just can't quit you.

not yet anyway.

happy 2009 everyone. I hope that 2008 brought you many fond memories, but also handed you lemons so that you could really see how amazing it all was.



oh hush up internet

2008-11-24T11:44:32.778-05:00

what about the posting once a day, kt?what about nablopomo, kt?what about that, huh?if you really want to know... I went overseas for a little vacation. it was supposed to be some sight-seeing... a really great opportunity to experience the quaint eastern european atmosphere. I got a fabulous rate at a local hostel. I remember some friends doing that and they had a wonderful time. so, of course, the plan was to enjoy some nightlife in addition to the exploring and hiking during the day. I went out to some clubs with some of the other guests from the hostel. by the time we got home, it was really late... and the next morning we realized that the guy from the room next to me never made it home. the woman at the front desk said he'd checked out, which was strange, but we didn't think anything of it. we went out again the next night and again, that morning, another guest had "checked out" but this time, some of his stuff was still there! it was all very strange and I was getting a bit freaked out. but, not one to let things get to me, we went out again the following night. I don't remember much after that... except when I had this really weird drink... and I woke up in this strange room... to this guy talking in what sounded like german... and he was wearing this thick leather slash vinyl apron and had a whole bunch of tools that looked eerily similar to those I've seen on the autopsy table from CSI: Miami. then he started yelling at me in german and he picked up one of the tools shaped like a dentist's plaque pick and...wait. that's not what happened... that's a brief synopsis of the first hour of the movie 'hostel'. I'm sorry. I totally must have gotten my lines crossed. seriously... here's what really happened.I traveled out to the family farm in iowa. das stayed back here in CT to take care of some work around the house and whatnot. my uncle and cousins were going to be heading out to the big state fair to show their animals, and I was going to hold down the fort since they'd be gone for a couple of weeks. I was having a great time... enjoying all the alone time... but then a wandering photographer stumbled upon the house. he looked like a weather-beaten, more-ragged version of clint eastwood. I fell instantly in love with him, even though I knew I would be seeing my husband soon. he told me he was a photographer for national geographic doing a graphic journey through the county. I followed him on his shoots, mostly of the local bridges, and thus began our torrid five-day love affair. it was an amazing time... and I didn't know if I'd be able to just open the door and allow myself to love him forever... but...wait. I am SO sorry. I must be misunderstanding the task at hand... I'm intertwining my life with the movie "bridges of madison county" and making it fit for my personal circumstances. wow... I don't know what's wrong.look... I do have a reason for slacking. I'm just kind of embarrassed by it. in reality... I've been trying to get work done. I've been trying to concentrate. it's just been very difficult. I mean, how am I expected to do *anything* when I know that victoria is coming for me. edward tried his hardest to save me... watch over me like a lioness and her cubs... but he's abandoned me knowing that it's safest to be away from me; from temptation. now I have to rely on jacob and his pack to keep me safe. I don't know if I'm going to even make it. my heart bleeds every day for edward; life without him is so real, so normal... jacob tries so hard to fill the void... but I'm not ready...wait. what? you don't understand... (sigh) ok. ok. you got me. I'm just spouting out random plotlines from the[...]



why I may have lost my faith in a uconn education

2008-11-22T08:38:57.408-05:00

overheard at last night's uconn mens' ncaa opening round soccer match:

boy: jeez. you don't know what jersey barriers are and you're from jersey?
girl: well, I suppose in new jersey... they would only call them barriers.



switching gears

2008-11-06T13:57:43.486-05:00

I'm going to a quilting retreat this weekend at sunday river. I am ridiculously excited... just because I think I need it (mentally). and I have a lot to get done (quiltingly). well, there are two things in particular that need to be completed.
  1. my round robin blocks for the kosher pickles
  2. the wedding quilt for my friends... who'll be celebrating their one-year anniversary on monday.

I have some other projects, too, that I am bringing with me... but those are the major things that I need to finish. I'm also bringing some stamping, too, because I have a few cards that I need to make (namely b-day cards for my mom and dad whose birthdays were nov. 2 and oct. 25, respectively). we'll see how those end up. especially since my mom is going to be there with me. although... she's made cards for me while I've been sitting only five feet from her and just said, "ok... don't look at what I'm making." :) oh mom...

I'm also bringing "eclipse". I haven't had the chance to really start reading it... so I'm greatful for the opportunity. I've been able to escape in these books. it's enough fantasy so you know it's not going to happen... you're not that far out of reality... but enough of a realistic story line, generally speaking, that it leaves you longing for the relationship that bella has with edward. perhaps I'll have to pick up book four, too, while I'm home. :) I hear walmart has the lowest prices.

in other quilt-related news, I got an email from the maine quilts coordinator. she asked if I would be interested in working something out for doing the photography for next year's show... which honestly surprised me. I thought that I was going to be booted from the position given the lack of, well, interest that I showed for finishing anything up on time. but, she seems willing to give me another try. I'm concerned because I don't want to take on too much with my sign chair responsibilities plus the classes I want to take. I don't want her to regret her decision to try it again. however, I enjoyed doing it... I got to really see the show and it was fun. plus, there was a stipend, which helped pay for my room/board for the show. thoughts on what I should do? I have kind of made a decision, but I'm intrigued to hear what anyone else might have to say.

and speaking of maine quilts 2009... the teacher and class listing has been posted to the website. if you are in the area, take a peek at what is available... we've got some great instructors this coming summer. july 24-26 are the dates. come on up to augusta!! :) oh, and check out the photos that I took for maine quilts 2008, too! it took me long enough... I may as well tell people to look at 'em!

and the weekend after... the final weekend of july is the greater hartford quilt guild's quilt show. I haven't decided if I'll volunteer for anything, or just enter somethings... or just go to look for once. :) we'll see...




hello. my name is kt...

2008-11-06T12:24:19.195-05:00

...and I am a sleepoholic.

ok. well... maybe I'm just projecting my larger issues onto my intense desire to sleep in. I guess I'm not really a sleepoholic, but if there was a name for it... I'd feel a little better about myself. it's a lot easier to say that I have am just built that way; I'm hard wired to crave the depths of dreamland. it's so much easier to say that than, "I'm lazy." or "I have no work ethic." or "I can't face another day." or my personal favorite... "I just don't give a shit."

my das, bless his soul, has tried to help me. it must be so hard for him to get through the random mental breakdowns that happen at 1am. the ones where I say that I'm no good... I've wasted the opportunities that were given to me... I could be so much more than I am. he's getting pretty good at it though. I mean, it's the same thing every time. because nothing ever changes. I hit the bottom (though I'm sure I could go lower)... I have a "revelation"... I cry... I say it's going to get better.

lather, rinse and repeat.

I'm far too tempted to give up. not from the grand expanse of life... goodness NO! I mean... that it's so much more comfortable to be... sad and miserable. putting on a happy face for the public, but "knowing" that deep down that I just can't do it for real. not for extended periods of time.

well. yes... I know I have a fantastic husband who supports me in everything that I do and loves me unconditionally and selflessly puts up with all my bullshit. and yeah, I know that even though my family's a little fucked up... they love me and miss me when I'm gone, which is almost always. I am aware that I have a roof over my head... OUR house that we bought and have made our home. my pets? I know they are the greatest ever. well, yeah, I have a job... it's not the greatest, but it occasionally challenges me mentally and I have gained the respect of my coworkers for my skill set. oh and my friends? they are many... and they love me... and as far as I know they'll always be there for me.

so what's your point? don't you realize that deep down I know I am lucky. I have a fabulous life. but it's not the life that I expected. I was supposed to be a scientist. I was supposed to be a medical examiner, even (until my dad talked me out of it because he said that profession had one of the highest suicide rates). I wasn't supposed to be on academic probation. I wasn't supposed to be kicked out of the honors program for low grades. I was supposed to go to graduate school. I am smart, damn it. I shouldn't be losing my edge at age twenty-seven (or earlier). so what the hell happened?

I make fun of das for not being able to accept change. but obviously it is I who cannot move past the past. so how do I do that? therapy? too expensive and I'm a bit jaded in the therapy department. drugs? I guess... but das is anti-drug and I'd like to respect his wishes. besides, I can barely remember to take my regularly scheduled meds as is... and my tum doesnt really like meds. aren't those my only two options? what else am I supposed to do. I need help. and I don't know where to go.

oh, and I think I know the name... it's called depressed. at least I think so. 'cause that's how I feel.



channeling my inner 17 year old

2008-11-04T10:50:57.863-05:00

so. I was supposed to post yesterday. and I did have every intention of doing so. just like I had the intention to finish up my kosher pickles border exchange to mail out for today. and I was going to make my parents' birthday cards. and I was going to pack a little for the retreat this weekend.

but. I didn't. you can see that. this post reads... november 4th.

so let me tell you what I did do. I ran some errands (I heart target). put away the halloween decorations and costumes. packed up the crystal punch bowl with cups. organized the tailgating slash camping stuff and put that away. did three loads of laundry. made dinner (courtesy of a tasty quick recipe from storey).

then sat down to eat dinner... and read. that is the point in time when... I lost all track of time. when I zoned out to the fact that das's tum hurt and refused to eat dinner and fell asleep on the couch watching football. when I finally reached for the tea I'd fixed an hour before that had more than just cooled off. when I realized... holy crap... I am obsessed with this... this... TEEN LIT BOOK!

that's right... last night, I blew through book two of the twilight series. all five hundred pages of it. in four and three quarters hours. but I could not put it down. I couldn't force myself to put the bookmark in and go to bed. I needed to know what would happen to bella and edward and jacob and the whole cullen family. I felt as though I was there... walking through the washington woods with them... standing at the cold, windy beaches. my heart was breaking when theirs was; I was happy when they were. this series is as infectious as harry potter (and please forgive me for saying... but the british guys in both movies are smoking hot - don't deny your inner high schooler, you know I speak the truth). I am looking forward to going home so I can plop down and just start in on the next book. not that I can... I have stuff to do... but still.

I must get things done tonight... things that do not involve "eclipse". (sigh)

oh, and I have edward as my desktop at work. and I also can't wait for the movie. on november 21st. that's, like, sixteen days. but not that I'm counting. I'm not *that* obsessed.

yet.



nablopomo

2008-11-02T12:56:01.209-05:00

say that five times fast. ready... go. :)

I've been slacking on my posting lately. it's been really hectic at work and home and blah blah blah excuses excuses. so... in a total fit of insanity... I decided to sign up for national blog posting month. thirty posts - thirty days. so... here's number one. it's not so glamorous, but I figure that it's just an intro post. (and also, it's a day late... so let's assume that november starts on the second for all intents and purposes).

if you need me, I'll be cursing myself for signing up to post every day. either that or reading my new obsession... "twilight" by stephenie meyer. or raking the forty-seven pounds of leaves that have been deposited on our lawn. or finishing up the border exchange that was due a week or two ago. or making my father's birthday card (for 10/25)... or my mom's birthday card (11/2). or crying over the amount of crap that I have to do... thusly failing to do any of it.

it's going to be an AWESOME november. :)



think about it

2008-10-22T17:03:14.397-04:00

october is breast cancer awareness month... as I am sure you all know. I'm sure you've been inundated with pink this and pink that. support the ta-tas and check your breasts. there are pink ribbons on everything from note pads to teddy bears to clothing. even I have (slash am borrowing) a shawl that was purchased in support of breast cancer.please know that I have family who has fought and beat this disease. I understand the importance of fund raising and increasing awareness and early detection.but please...can't other diseases get a little recognition?I know that I do fund raising for the american heart association. in fact, because of wonderful, generous people, I was able to raise $850 for the AHA. I'm not saying to choose AHA over cancer; it's not about that. I choose them because it is personal for me; you need to do what's best for you. in the grand scheme of things, I imagine that of other diseases (besides breast cancer)... the AHA does pretty well in regards to public recognition. many are aware of the start! program or go red for women. (if not, there are the links)but really? what about the others?pancreatic cancer claimed the life of one of my favorite teachers ever. she was full of spunk and vitality and creativity... she made you want to learn. she was so physically active and a loving mother and wife. she was diagnosed... and I believe within a year, she was gone. the chance of surviving pancreatic cancer is about 4%. you have a better chance of surviving a plane crash. breast cancer survival is up to 90%. only $73.3 million of funding from the national cancer institute went to research for pancreatic cancer. breast cancer received $572.4 million from NCI. that's almost 8 times less research funding from NCI for a cancer that has less than a 5% survival rate?!lung cancer actually killed more americans than breast cancer in the past year. yet it received $226.9 million in fund from the NCI. that's 2.5 times less research funding for the leading cancer killer.(to be fair... cardiovascular research received $381 million - we're lucky)what about those other ones that you kind of hear about but don't really know that much about... like prostate cancer (the guys need love too), leukemia, non-hodgkin's lymphoma, or skin cancer? what about diseases that aren't even cancer... do we just not want to donate because they aren't as glamorous? they don't have their colored ribbon the sides of race cars? because it's easier to think about breasts than it is to think about prostates? because it seems pointless to do a marathon for influenza? because we don't want to see billboards asking for funding for urinary incontinence (but it's ok to see two naked people in bathtubs as they discuss their active over-65 love life)? money that goes pink, can't go anywhere else.before you all think that I'm this awful human being for being anti-pink (which I'm not... really)... all I'm saying is that I have an issue with the blatant commercialization of all things pink which detracts from the importance of other worthy causes. it's not fair that the public, via corporations that are jumping on the pink bandwagon for marketability purposes, are essentially dictating what disease should receive the most attention and funding. do you really think that your yogurt that donates to the komen foundation with every lid you send in has your best interests in mind? that yogurt you're consuming actually is made from milk from cows that have been treated with the synthetic hormo[...]



the show must go on...

2008-11-02T12:34:48.892-05:00

so after we dined (and racked up quite the bill)... das and I walked back to the bushnell theatre to see the opening performance of 'sweeney todd: the demon barber of fleet street'.


let me preface this by saying that das and I had an idea of what to expect, though neither of us had seen the movie or read the book or really knew the plotline. when I bought the tickets, it was more for the "night out at the theatre for our anniversary" kind of thing than for the show itself. das's sister had given us some input saying she had seen it in chicago and it was... ok... but the set was very "minimalist". dave's sister aside, I think people in chicago may have higher expectations for their theatre than we do here in hartford; she said people were leaving during the show. um, no way dude... I paid hard-earned money for these tickets... hell if I'm leaving!! anyway, we got there early... enjoyed a cocktail and took our seats. I had gotten second row front balcony, which was great... cheaper, but still with a great view. overall, I would have to agree with her. it was very... small. the cast, while highly talented, was an all-in-one cast. they were the orchestra, the actors, and the set-movers. which really led to an increase in "use of imagination". (sigh) I thought the story was great... I can't wait to see the movie (and, well, johnny depp... duh). I don't think that I would leave (we didn't), but I wouldn't see it again. except in movie form. with johnny depp. (drool)



never in my life have I paid so much for one piece of sushi and two blisters

2008-10-20T17:55:00.488-04:00

but trust me... oh was it worth it. :)das and I went out for our anniversary yesterday evening. it was a beautiful night... and damn! did I look beautiful. ha ha. no really. we both dressed up... I in my black-dress-that-I-wore-to-forty-seven-weddings-last-year dress (complete with large pink I-support-ta-tas shawl) and das in blue with a blue and yellow tie. it's fun to get dressed up... every once in a while. otherwise, it's just plain annoying. we both get to wear jeans to work... so it's not often that we have the opportunity to get gussied up.anyway, we dined at feng asian bistro (sound) in hartford. it's one of those places where you only go for a) happy hour, or b) when you have an anniversary/birthday/other special event that requires a "special" (read: expensive) dinner. plus I had a coupon. not really a coupon... but a "value opportunity" courtesy of my job. anywho... it was divine. the food was literally melting in my mouth. we started off with an appetizer off the specials menu: thinly sliced yellowtail with jalapeños and pineapple citrus sauce. we were a bit concerned when the waiter asked if we wanted to order two of them. we totally thought we were going to have to split some bay scallop-sized piece of sushi between the two of us since we only ordered one. however, it ended up being six VERY thinly sliced pieces of fish which were to be wrapped around the pepper and dipped in the sauce. it was very light and flavorful; the citrus sauce perfectly balanced the heat of the jalapeño (which wasn't that bad at all anyway). we also got drinks... I opted for a reisling from, I believe, oregon... or somewhere else on the northwestern coast. it was very good, though at $11/glass... I sipped it for the rest of the night! das got a green tea martini which was skyy vodka, green tea liquer, and brewed green tea. I had a taste and it was quite good (he ended up with two on the night). for our meals, we opted for sushi over a real cooked entrée. das, as is par for the course, opted for the sushi dinner, which is usually chef's choice sushi. he got a great selection of quality sushi including salmon, yellowtail, and fatty tuna. I got the "autumn in connecticut" roll. I have never tasted a roll as fabulous as this (though I'm really willing to try and find something - please... keep the sushi coming!). it was spicy alaskan king crab, salmon, avacado, yuzu masago, wasabi pepper, and momiji juices. I told das that he could have a piece, and it pained me (after tasting it) to allow him to take one. see honey - I *do* love you! I also ordered special a la carte sushi off the daily specials menu. this was a special fatty tuna. it was fabulous. it was $12/piece. I ordered two. oy. but dear lord was it so fantastic. das and I inhaled our food... and we were still hungry. so we figured what the hell? we've already spent enough on high quality sushi that we'll need to sell our first born and still get a second mortgage... what's another roll gonna do? so we ordered, again, off the daily specials menu... the surf and turf roll. I don't have the exact ingredients... but all you need to know is that it was mainly lobster on the inside and it had thinly sliced filet mignon on the outside. [drool] it took a lot of willpower to not hoarde that all to myself. seriously. but damn. it was good. the waiter then came over, while I was wiping the drool off my face, and asked if we wanted to join the VIP club. al[...]



a letter to das

2008-10-14T11:15:24.693-04:00

hi honey,it's me. your loving wife. I just wanted to write you a little note to say happy anniversary. it's been two years since we said we'd love each other forever. well, now that I think about it, we've probably said it since then... maybe, like, something relatively similar anyway... but it's been two years since it was said officially in front of all our friends and family and a justice of the peace. ANYway. it's been a wicked crazy ride thus far... lots of ups and downs... heartbreak and chaos... love and support. it's so amazingly obvious to me that we were meant for each other because, well, I don't think that anyone else would have put up with me like you have. and well, honestly... that could go both ways, babe. we must have known from the beginning that something was different. we stuck it out through thick and thin... just waiting for that moment when we could start our lives together. I can't imagine my life without you in it; my heart aches to think that someday you may not be there. I can be me with you... and for that I am forever grateful. I am looking forward to the rest of our life together. however much a pain in the butt you are for making me get up early and go to work on time.Ani L'Dodi, v'Dodi Li here's to a lifetime of amazing memories. *muah*love you.[...]



all about kt - 100 things

2008-10-03T17:23:19.037-04:00

ok so I totally didn't do it yesterday. for those of you biting your nails and sitting on the edge of your seat waiting in anticipation for it... I apologize from the bottom of my heart. but the blog is "...and the rest of life"... so you should expect that of me by now. :)so... in typical 100th-post fashion... here's my 100 things about me. enjoy. :)my nickname is katy. you can call me kt. select people can call me kate. people assume that because my given name is katharine (that's right... with an "a"), they can call me kathy. they would be really really ridiculously wrong. people also assume that katie is the only way to spell it. they would also be wrong. people are only given one name... extend them the courtesy of spelling it right, or asking if you aren't sure. (note: I'm not mad at you. I just get a little fired up after twenty-seven years of explaining this).I think that asparagus pee is funny.I love to eat asparagus.I am totally one of those people that gets things for an occasion and then remembers to bring it about halfway there. so is my husband. oh well.I love to sing, but I am very self-conscious about singing in front of people. I don't really like the sound of my voice, I guess.I was in a chamber choir in high school. it was awesome; I miss it and the experiences I had. we toured the state of maine numerous times, plus sang on the today show and at carnegie hall for easter. I have yet to find a choir that challenges me and makes me feel like I did when I was with them.I love my husband more than anything. even more so when I think about all the things we've gone through that a weaker love would not have been able to handle.why do I have the smurfs theme song on my ipod? seriously.I have three pets: bowser, our pug, gabe and jager, our cats. I am a professed dog person, though I truly love my cats, too. but I cry if I even think of a time when I won't be able to see my bowserface. it's a sad case, but I had so badly wanted my own dog and, honestly, he couldn't be more perfect for me, or for our family. shout out to the black pugs. woot woot!I love to cook. more often than not, I will search new recipes and use them. once. then try another recipe for the same thing. my husband loves it.I attempt to bake. it's not my forte. but I try. maybe eventually I'll get it.one time, when I was ten (note: I don't really know how old I was, but I was young)... my father left me at church and drove home. he forgot that I had gone with him. the priest had to call my house so that he could come back and get me.speaking of my father, he is bipolar. very bipolar. it makes me sad. and made life difficult. and to an extent, still does. but I love him anyway. (note: this year's bipolar disorder awareness day, part of mental illness awareness week, is thursday, october 9, 2008).I have been at my current job for about 3-1/4 years. in that timeframe, I have worked in four different departments and had many more responsibilities. I like what I do now, though.my dream job would be to work at my own quilt store, providing not only quality fabrics and notions, but an amazingly large quantity of classes ranging from beginner to advanced. my mom would work with me (she would teach the advanced classes, duh). das would do all our marketing and design. I would design all the patterns. I would also try to have an immense web presence, incorporating internet knowledge and "old school" techniques.[...]