Monday, May 28, 2012

Cool. Cool Cool Cool. Hot. Hot Hot Hot

Ash and are on a road trip! We stopped by Las Vegas and I had it in my memory that you can see the white tigers at The Mirage for free, so that was our destination. While looking for the tigers, we stopped in front of a beautiful indoor waterfall to take pictures. An older couple came up behind us and smiled at Ash.

"Hi!" they cooed at her. "Remember us?" They looked at me.
I looked at them. I had never seen them before and besides, what are the odds that we would run into someone we know in the middle of a casino in Vegas?
"We were in line with you yesterday at the white tiger exhibit." They turned their attention back to Ash. "Such beautiful eyes! Remember us, honey?"
"Um, I don't think we were here yesterday." I said timidly. But, not wanting them to feel bad I added "But, actually, we were just looking for the tiger exhibit. Do you know where it is?"
The man took a step back and looked amazed. "Are you kidding me?' He exclaimed. He turned back to Ash. "Nah, I know it's you. Were you wearing sparkley gold shoes yesterday, honey?"
"Uh-huh." Ash said, in that stage where that is her answer to any question."
The man took this as proof that I was "kidding him" and that I was mentally unstable. He and his wife hurried away whispering.

Where they in a different temporal reality yesterday? Are there Doppelgangers about? Was I separated from my twin sister at birth and somehow she ended up having a daughter who is the same age and looks just like my daughter, except she owns a pair of sparkley gold shoes instead of sparkley pink shoes?  Oh! Maybe it was my evil twin from a darker timeline with an evil Ash. I wonder if they were wearing felt goatees.

We did find the tigers, but it costs money to see them. But, on the bright side, we did see a really cool indoor waterfall.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

It's not Broken. The Sun is Behind the Moon. It's a Solar Eclipse. It's Literally the Darkest Day in Fire Nation History

Recently the Internets told us we could see a solar eclipse if we were looking at the right time know...didn't actually look. Drek constructed some very fancy technology so we could watch without damaging our eyes: 

Very cool:

It wasn't a full eclipse, which might explain why we weren't attacked by vampires, or a Kraken, or invaders of any sort. But it was still exciting in it's own way.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

What is the Point of All Those Push-Ups If You Can't Even Lift a Bloody Log?

This morning I did thirty push-ups in a row without stopping. They were girl push-ups, but still, considering that a month ago I couldn't do more than six girl push-ups in a row, thirty is astounding. Even more astounding: in two more weeks I expect to do one hundred girl push-ups in a row.

Drek and I are doing the One Hundred Push-Ups program. He does army push-ups. I think once we've hit the one hundred push-up mark we'll start over and I'll do army push-ups and he'll do one-armed push-ups with Ash riding on his back. Maybe over the hot coals of a campfire. My husband is that awesome. 

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Why Did the Pig Go Into the Kitchen? Because He Felt Like Bakin'

The Relief Society talent show was last night. The closer it got, the more I panicked about sharing my blog as my "talent." On the internet there is no pretense about talent: It's a blog. It may or may not be good. I could be a six-year old. I could be an illiterate. The reader makes no assumptions before reading a post.  Presumably, if you are sharing something at a talent show, whether or not you were forced, the readers think you have some talent in that area. I just can't put my writing out there to be judged like that!

So I called and asked if I could set up my massage table and give out one minute massages instead. It's not a talent, but it is an ability, and in one minute could these sisters really tell the difference? So That's what I did. I think it went well.

The other talents were great. We had the usual: singing, dancing, knitting, and the unusual: doll making, speed yoga, salsa making... One women told three  jokes she had memorized from laffy taffy wrappers. Perhaps my favorite one was a women who stood up and said: "I was asked to share a talent and I said I  didn't have one to share. I sarcastically mentioned I could juggle for five seconds and they said 'Oh! Wonderful! Do that!'"
So she did. It might have been only four seconds, but it was great.

The night was quite wonderful. I hope we do another one next year.

Sunday, May 06, 2012

This Will be a Day Long Remembered. It has Seen the End of Kenobi, and Will Soon See the End of the Rebellion

We are winning the battle. We are squashing those rebel scum, or, rebel snails, actually. The snails joined forces with the rabbits. They suggested a new strategy : Destroy our food source and starve us out.

For a while they had the advantage. We overestimated their strength and lost one brave zucchini plant. That's what it took to startle us into action.

We retaliated by arming the base of our plants (Japanese eggplant, Italian eggplant, crooked neck squash, straight neck squash) with copper tape.They regrouped to avenge their friend.  The snails didn't stand a chance.

Along with rearming, the squash plants began training by the bush beans, which were so skilled at combat they didn't have a single nibble scar from the snails. Sadly, it wasn't much later that the bush beans began to fall seemingly random attacks. At first we thought snails, but those blast points: too accurate for snails. Only rabbits are so precise. They were sneaking under the fence to take out our forces one by one.
We fortified our perimeter with old wooden boards from the fence we had just torn down. We had to go into the garbage chute to get them, but we were victorious. Our army is nothing if not resourceful!

In victory, we were able to collect our first harvest: Our broccoli plants withstood all battles valiantly. You can see the scars on the leaves, but those scars weren't enough.

We staged a rescue of the produce. At first we had a bad feeling, we weren't sure if we were going to make it.It was some rescue; we went in there and didn't have a plan for getting out, but then I used the scissors to cut the broccoli off the stalk, and it was all clear, kid! Now let’s blow this thing and go home! We ate the broccoli for dinner today. It was delicious.

Happy Revenge of the Sixth, everyone. 

Thursday, May 03, 2012

Michael Jordan Plays Ball. Charles Manson Kills People. I Talk. Everyone Has a Talent

Actual phone conversation from yesterday:

Her: "I was just calling to let you know about our Relief Society activity next week."
Me: "Oh, yes. I have it on my calendar and am actually working out a carpool. I will be there!"
Her: "Great! Well, it's a talent show, are you planning on performing?"
Me: "Ha! No. Very no. I wouldn't want to subject the poor sisters to anything I could perform."
Her: "Well, everyone has different talents. This activity is to showcase all different kinds of talents. You don't have to sing or do a dramatic play, you could bring something that you've sewn. I don't know if you sew.
Me: "I don't"
Her: "Or something you've knitted. We have sisters bringing photographs and artwork.
Me: "I'm not really a crafty person. At all. Really. I don't have anything I can showcase."
Her: "We'll have display tables set up. You don't even have to stand in front of everyone, you can just have something on the tables.You could even bring something you've grown in your garden. I know you have a garden."
Me: "Oh, well, yes, but it's in the ground. And it's not really my garden, it's more of a team effort. It can't really be called my talent.
Her "Maybe something you've cooked?"
Me: "We have so many talented sisters in the ward, I'm sure the night is already scheduled."
Her: "Well, actually, we're asking every sister to share a talent. This night isn't about sitting and watching, it's about sharing the gift you've been given. We need everyone to share their talent."
Me: "Uh-huh. You know, I think I'm busy that night..."

She said she'd talk to me on Sunday to get my talent on the program. Sigh

Talent. I just don't have it. I am not being modest, I am accepting reality. So, aside from flying Krisling out here so we can do the light saber Jedi-duel we practiced (but never performed because I am not talented in light saber dueling) for our college talent show, I just don't have any ideas. I asked my friend about it, and she suggested I use one of my blog posts. Which, despite the fact that blogging isn't really a talent, and as far as blogs go, this doesn't make the list of "top fifty best blogs I've ever read",  is actually a fantastic idea. It's something small that won't draw a lot of attention, and this blog is public on the internet so how much harder can it be to display a single post on a table?

I could use some help. Is there a blog post of mine you've found particularly read-worthy? Maybe one that made you laugh out loud or one that you thought was just a touch insightful? I'm not looking for a post worthy of a Peabody award, just one that I can share without dying of embarrassing. Maybe I've written a post without any grammatical or spelling errors (now that would be beyond my talent)?

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Nice Try. We Never Had Any Cookiejars in My Home Because My Mother Never Baked Cookies 'Cause She Never Felt We Deserved Any Cookies so Obviously it has Nothing to do With My Childhood

I love to cook, but I'm not all that good at baking. Yes, I did work in a bakery for over a year, but I didn't really pick up on any baking tips.

When I cook, I rarely fail. I'd say my success rate is around ninety nine percent.

When I bake, I'd say my success rate is around sixty percent. I just don't understand why things don't rise sometimes. I still can't make a perfect loaf of bread. Now, some of this might have to do with the fact that I still don't have a working oven, but even before that I had problems.

And then there is pie crust. Pie crust is my nemesis. I cannot make pie crusts. I've tried tips and secrets, I've tried different recipes and ingredients, but I still struggle with pie crust. I'd put my success rate at around four percent.

And yet, today I decided to make empanadas, which is basically a hundred tiny little pie crusts. Why I thought I could do that, I do not know. I was supposed to make dinner for a women who just had a baby, and I thought empanadas would be a good dessert, and didn't think through the fact that I hate making pie crusts.

Oh, it was a fantastic failure. I struggled throughout the whole process, I wasted two thirds of the dough when I tried to roll it our or press it together, and what few empanadas did make it into the oven were filled with holes and cracks. I made it even worse when I tried to get them off the cookie sheet and they crumbled into one big mess of apple, cinnamon, sugar, and crust.

It's to the point where I am willing to admit defeat: I don't care if you have a perfect pie crust recipe, I am done trying. I will, from henceforth, buy pie crusts.

On the bright side, dinner turned out perfect, so there.