Tuesday, January 31, 2012

this weekend was real fun.
saturday after work i picked up a cool ikea light from someone via craigslist. i cut the plug off of it and hardwired it directly into the ceiling, after i took down the old ugly chandelier.
Finally took down the ugg/out of place chandelier
stoked, it totally goes with the room and because its white, when its not on it totally blends into the ceiling. makes the room feel bigger!
later in the evening we went to El Patron for awesome birthday dinner for Chad. Came home stuffed, it was so good.
Woke up early sunday to start a batch of pizza dough, some of my favorite coworkers from the last salon i worked at were coming over for brunch.
Brunch pizza partay
i made lots of pizzas and enjoyed some good QT with folks I don't hang with nearly enough.
i dedicated sunday to chillaxin, and indeed i did. after a liesurely day of nibbling on fruit, pizza, cupcakes, and more, i played tetris 2 while the dogs snoozed on the couch beside me.
sleep snuggler
it was awesome.
early bed, knowing i'd be up early monday for maximum productivity.
egon was still very tired from sunday playtime with my friends

i let them settle into naptime and split, on a mission to get some things done. got a blind for the french door to the side porch, and hit a local thrift store in search of storage options for my craft room.
found this instead!
Ten dolla holla
also picked up these guys, mega potential
$25 set! wonder who the maker is?
the desk was pretty much ready to roll. so cute, need to find a permanent spot for it.
started taking upholstery off the chairs, hoping something awesome would be still intact. looking at the bottom of the seats, i could see the backing of a fabric that appeared to be orange or red, and the first layer of fabric was definitely not that.
Layer one - awful nineties fabric
first layer was textural nineties fabric.
Layer two - orange and yellow lace embossed vinyl
second layer was this lace embossed yellow and orange vinyl

third layer was green flower embossed vinyl. it looks like barkcloth, but its really vinyl!
Fourth and final layer, AWESOME orange
lo and behold, under that was a GREAT orange. it is the exact orange as my knoll chair see, in a stroke of most excellent luck.
i got to work on the base of the chairs. they clearly needed some tending to as well.
chairs needed some work
i'll have to post finished pics soon, the new paint is still curing.
they came out great, nothing like 30$ worth of cool midcentury furniture!
ended the day with a great sense of accomplishment, got so much done that had been on my to do list.
unseasonably warm
daffodils are all in bloom, its been so spring-ish lately.
early bloomers
wonder if we'll get anything out of em in the spring, or if this is it?
lots to come this week and weekend, including an epic superbowl partay, visits from philly friends, and maybe a huge bonfire to burn the stump out of the ground! booyeah!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

well, as much as i complain about work, i have good bosses that appreciate me. as a present for having to deal with so much headache, they gave me some awesome gift cards and a nice thank you note. oops, i suck.
now that its winter i stay home all the time. i know i mentioned it before, but winter turns me into a cooking, homemaking hermit.
Pierogi makin!
that said, this weekend was all about pierogi.
i mashed a bunch of red potatos, added sauteed onions and cheddar, and made a literal shitton of pierogi.

they are delicious. again the plan was to make enough to have some for us, frozen, and to give away to the wolaks. two gallon ziploc bags later, i say we have plenty.
Ravioli and pierogies!
we celebrated the "two weeks, no seizures" milestone this week.
dottie, in kiss kiss mode
the dogs were ridiculous as always. dottie is just totally wild, and shes dangerously smart. egon has been awesome, fired up and nibbly.
as an exciting reward, we went on a toy shopping spree at petsmart (and used up some of my new giftcards)
Lets go already!!!
they were so excited, they played all night long then woke up the next morning and ran straight to the room where their new toys were. didn't even try to go outside, just out of bed and straight to toys. dags, they're funny.
dottie waits for a kiss
CLantz became a doctor, finally, so there was a celebration for her. the bar was loud, and the night after we had pizza and board games to celebrate in a place where we could hear each other without yelling.
marilyn is not excited about board games
it was real fun, even though maryiln looks so totally bored.
stayed out late, slept in a little the next day.
went for lunch at a new mexican resturant near our house...THAT PLACE IS AWESOME.
New mex resturant near our house
first off, its clean and bright and cute inside. secondly, theres a HUGE wall sized wood carving that says VIVA MEXICO. third, the food is bangin. so bangin, in fact, that we went there again the next day.
i finished making pierogi while andrew got real serious with his new chainsaw in the backyard. attacking the massive stump from the tree that got cut down a year ago, oops.
here's a quick before: note, that huge ass stump is taller than andrew - and thats a 6 foot privacy fence.
egon bounds
and now after, after one day of chainsawing:
Taming the beast
while i was in the middle of rolling dough, andrew burst into the house hollering for me...assuming we were going to the ER with a chainsaw injury, i was a little alarmed. turns out that dude found a bat while cutting apart the stump!
Found bat
he was up in the rotten core, hibernating.
boy howdy, after we woke him up he was PISSED OFF.

put him in the neighbors super viney/overgrown mulberry tree in the alley and wished him well.
every time i let the dogs out, egon would run to the pile of wood shavings made from the chainsaw and eat them as fast as possible. what is wrong with him???
at any rate, it made him spectacularly sick. after dinner that night he was making us real nervous, he kept having to go outside, and finally he threw up a pretty big amount of woodchips and dogfood and grass. nice.
that morning he had another seizure. big bummer. friday was the two weeks, no seizures mark, so we barely made it. my thinking (and the vets thought as well) was that he most likely threw up the phenobarbitol pill that night from dinner, or didn't have the chance to absorb it all before it came back up. the wood chips probably absorbed a lot of it. in a couple weeks we'll take him back to the vet for more bloodwork, but for now things are okay.
The serious face of "give me your breakfast"
he still demands that you give him your breakfast, no matter what, every day.
because of his early morning seizure, his next day was pretty much spent sleeping.
Team snuggle
thankfully dottie and idle are sympathetic with naps, and they helped him sleep all day long.
many moons ago, i painted the downstairs bathroom and hung shelves/pictures. because i am lazy, instead of moving the ladder while cutting in the last corner of the wall, i stepped off the ladder and onto the corner of the sink. and it snapped off. it was totally angering, and it was stupid. so i broke the brand new sinktop by being lazy and fat. great.
i'd been casually looking for a replacement and got serious with it a few weekends ago.
found a sinktop at the thrift store that matched the dimensions really closely, and it was this great ugly/awesome red thick heavy material.
finally got around to installing it this weekend.
not bad for a cheap fast fix. one day i'll make the bathroom all ikea renovated, but for now i'm totally into the red sinktop.
New old awesome/ugly sinktop

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

ugh. last week started with this:
The weekend cannot get here soon enough
harddrive on the work computer melted down. totally sweet. meant we had no access to appointments, so we came to work every day, and whoever walked in - got hair did. it was cah-razy. this week i'm entering the no-computer days of transactions, working on the three pages of clients to call to reschedule, trying to restore our old files, and trying to piece all the missing data together from old recipts. AAAAAND i'm working on itemizing every single thing we bought for our huge renovation between february and august of last year, its almost 70k worth of merchandise ranging from $3 bags of bolts to $7000 hvac units. the accountant needs it STAT to prepare our corp return. ugh, i kind of want to call in sick, every day, right now.
because work has been total misery, i just focused on happy home livin and loving dogs.
roasted the marina di chiogga squash from this summers garden

came out so soft and buttery and bright orange

went ahead and puree-ed it, thinking i'd make ravioli.

whipped up a quick batch of spinach pasta dough, made it waaaaay too stiff. just meant it was harder work to roll out.

i'd picked up a sweet old tupperware ravioli maker on etsy for 8$, so rolled the dough big enough to use that as a form.
My little old tupperware ravioli maker
traced the edges of the ravioli form with water, so the dough would stick to the top layer of dough i was planning on laying down.

the whole time this was happening the dogs were FRANTIC, running around dying to know what was happening up on the countertop. by the end of it all they had white spots of flour on their backs and faces.

used fresh squash puree plus ricotta, parmesan, cinnamon, clove, ginger, and a bit of bread crumb as a filling, and doled out a dollop of filling per square.

laid a second layer of rolled out dough on top of it all, and rolled it flat on the backside. the grid lines of the ravioli mold provided for perfect seperation.

the topside (aka the first layer) puffed out of the tray just as intended. simple, awesome device.

flipped the tray back upside down, and with a light tap...

viola! ravioli partay!
it was way easy, and the ravioli all came out so perfect.

boiled some for dinner, served with a little pesto. made the dough a little thick, so they were a bit chewy. the need for thinner dough needed, i rustled up another batch over the weekend.
Round two
that one squash provided me with a giant bowl of puree...so i made three batches of ravioli, froze some 1 cup portions for projects later this winter, and made bread with the rest of the puree. delicious.
over the course of the week, i'd noticed that the heat in our house didn't seem like it was working..the hvac fan was CONSTANTLY running, and the house was pretty cold. started paying close attention to it and noticed that only cold air was coming out of the vents. even put a little digital thermometer in the vent to test it out, duly noted that air less than body temp (98 degrees or so) would feel cool. air was definitely colder than the setting on the thermostat.
as a result, there was much snuggling.

even a double dog blanket burrito! the best ever!
hvac guy came monday, found a major freon leak (we had none at all in our system) and 550$ later, we have heat.
been on a search for good beets (well, a search within city limits...i'm not gonna drive 45 minutes each way from my house to short pump mall where the wholefoods is) and found some, finally, at the usually lame martins in carytown.
beet pattern
they were small and the greens were very wilted, but i roasted them to make more ravioli pasta dough over the weekend. after they roasted, i diced then pureed them to add to the dough recipe. when i cut their tops off, the prettiest pattern was right underneath.
i really wanted to make enough ravioli to A: use the squash puree totally up, B: freeze some for meals later this winter, C: give some away to andrew's parents.
and i did! i worked my butt off and made a shitton of it. haha. laid out each little square to freeze individually before i bagged em up. should be delicious!
now i'm back at work, plowing through three days of unentered date, trying to ressurect two days worth of book keeping that just happened to fall between backups, and its all giving me a major headache. not lovin life at work, holding my breath til the weekend...

Friday, January 13, 2012

Cant seem to get enough Billy Bragg lately, solo or not.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

this is bolt!
last week a client at the salon let me know via facebook that she got a boston terrier puppy for christmas at thanksgiving, just because she loved dottie so much when she used to come to the salon with me. she brought her digital cam full of puppy pics as show and tell.
Oh snap, merry christmas to me!
then in other exciting stuff, my new mixer arrived! merry christmas to me! i've been wanting an artisian for a while, and booyeah i got one.
i was all excited for baking on the weekend until disaster struck.
Back from the vet, car ride
friday at 5 am (one week, same time in the am as all other times) egon woke us up having another seizure. we know what to do now, so its less stressful as the first time, but every time he has one it opens the pathway to having more, which sucks. this time, after the first one, he immeaditely had another one. we were freaking out. clustering was new, and we didn't want that. he came to bed after a short post-ictal phase then jumped back up about twenty minutes later, launched into another seizure. we were freaking out. it was 630am, we were WIDE AWAKE, and thinking we were heading to the emergency vet with a seizing dog.
to the vet we did go, and after a bajillion tests, we have an epileptic dog. sadface.
he will be on lifetime meds UNLESS he does not have another seizure for a year while taking meds, then if we wean him off, the seizures do not return. poor buddy. we are taking it a step at a time, he is only on day three of meds and he has been WILDLY INSANE, even though the meds were supposed to make him possibly sleepy.
The broccoli that time forgot
friday, while i was listing around the house waiting for vet to call, i noticed that we had broccoli growing. i forgot i planted it, and hadn't been in the back corner of the yard enough to notice that it wasn't brussel sprouts.
Brussel sprouts that will not die
speaking of brussel sprouts, they're still alive too! unfortunately the dogs have peed on them about a million times, so theres no way i'm gonna eat em.
saturday i worked at the salon then tried to do a spot of sewing afterward. it just wasnt working out.
Worse than a cat
i couldn't focus and i was sort of stressed about mr. egon, just worrying. we didn't start him on meds to control the seizures until monday, so our weekend was full of worry that he would have another cluster, worse than the last. stress.
i just sort of laid low, spent the day with dogs, and tried to chill out.
my sewing helper
sunday i woke up pretty early, knocked out a project for an event in petersburg. a couple lady friends of mine started a business called wildebeest, they provide the setup for goldsprints for events. they were having a benefit for a local church in petersburg and invited me to come out and put a table up, promoting my etsy shop. so i did.
apparently after i left, everyone else just took the day off.
In the comforter
demolition coffee shop hosted the sprints, that place was awesome. real industrial/modern little place, clean and nice. and they had a wood top toilet!
nice wood top toilet
it was kind of awesome, awesome enough that i took a photo.
Twerkin it
i set up shop and handed out cards. not much in sales, but it was cool to see friends test out their new business.
monday i laid low. couldn't shake the stress. sunday it made me throw up mid day. also, coffee didn't help combined with the no food. yuck.
now that its winter and not christmas, i should have plenty of time to make better meals. i sort of slacked during salon crazy time, november and december are nutso and after nine hours of running around, i can't even stand up to cook. november and december were all takeout or gross processed frozen dinner stuffs. blah.
The winter of stuffed stuff
january could be the month of stuffin stuff. i think i'm gonna make ravioli thursday if i'm not totally zonked. made chicken breasts stuffed with mushrooms and stuffing.
coupled with delicious pasta from stellas, it was so good.
i'd been real antsy to use my new mixer and just hadn't had a chance. i grabbed an orange on the way home, zested and juiced it, and made orange vanilla scones. took about five minutes to make, not including the 12 minutes to bake. AWESOME.
i love it, that kitchenaid is so rad.
Farrow with green beans, corn, and feta
trying to get back to better grains for dinner sides, if i make more pasta i'm gonna try to use quinoa flour instead of a mix of semolina and all purpose. i have yet to see if my coffee grinder will tackle quinoa...otherwise the flour is SO expensive, even in bulk.
hopefully this weekend i can relax again, concentrate on prepping good food for the week and taking care of the house. i need to sleep for a couple days, my stress level has been so high lately that its totally worn me out.