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Posts tagged baking


I’m feeling stressed out.  And disappointed in myself for being stressed out.

It was sort of a rough day, though Lewis made me a lovely waffle breakfast with strawberries this morning.   Spent the rest of the day wrestling with some rolls I was making for easter dinner with the Lawyers.  Probably should have used a recipe I’ve tried before, but I’m always game to get to try something new, especially when it’s something sort of time consuming I don’t usually get a chance to try.  Stupidly it took an hour longer than I was hoping, and they didn’t even turn out very well.  I shouldn’t have stressed out about it.

Through the stress fog, some good things went on.  I got a nice walk this morning to get some ingredients, and the dinner at this evening was very nice.  I also got all the laundry done.  And did some reading outside, where I got a small sunburn.  I was going to hit up the gym today, but it was closed for the hoilday.  I do think it would have helped chill me out.  I wish I knew some more immediate way to alleviate my anxiety, it really ruins my days.  Or at least sucks the life out of them.

Tomorrow is a new day.   I slept off my stress last night and woke up feeling well this morning.  I can do it again.

A good word: cytoarchitectonics

Super productive day, but I don’t feel much like being expository tonight.  Mostly because I’m pooped!  List form it is:

  • Cogneuro class this morning – learned about EEGs.  Very neat!
  • Met with lab professor to set up research plan for this quarter.  Starting a Monday reading group (to count as my “directed reading”) and a Wednesday hands-on training deal.  Professor wants me to be trained to analyze the raw fMRI data he has collectd but not processed yet.  Also intend on starting a new study (to be partially directed by my interests?) and gathering pilot data already this quarter!
  • Spent a while at the gym doing generic cardio stuff (stairs, mostly) cause I think it helps destress me a bit.  Also tried an actual weight lifting device, and now my arms are sore in the strangest places!
  • Made oatmeal cookies with orange-essenced cranberries and white chocolate chips.  They turned out pretty good, for a recipe I hadn’t tried before.  Should bake them a little less next time.
  • Did a bunch of paper trolling (as in, reference chasing and google scholar browsing) for papers to start our reading group off with.  Too many choices already, but I found some really good background papers for myself at least.
  • Traced the pattern for Lewis’ PJs onto sturdier tracing fabric, and cut out all the pieces.  It’s starting to look like I’m doing something with this!

That’s all from me tonight.  This week is going crazy slow!

Counting down

Ah, the most bittersweet night of the week, Sunday is.  But it’s really not so bad.  I’ve only got two weeks of school left though, so I can slog through no problem.  The worst of it is the five remaining Quechua classes, which is really making a mountain out of a molehill, since class is always enjoyable, and never particularly stressful.  I just don’t much enjoy it overall, and though I’m learning a little, it seems like a waste of time.  It’s a series of ill-explained half-successful in-class exercises, and time consuming dialog recitations.  I miss my Russian classes, with their textbooks and small class size and clear goals.  I did way overdo some Quechua homework today.  We got the remaining class materials emailed to us this weekend and I’ve gotten pretty tired of doing these orally in class so I just did them all ahead of time.  It says something about how useless our class really is when I can do the next two weeks worth of home and class work in about two hours before the material is even introduced.  I should put that in quotes:  “introduced”.

Anyway, it’s been a very nice and very relaxing weekend for it being during the quarter and all.   I’ve been doing a lot of baking, which is nice.  Made two loaves of whole wheat sandwich bread today, but I haven’t tried it out yet.  Maybe tomorrow.  I sure am looking forward to getting through all this to finals, by which I mean writing the one paper I have to write and being done with this quarter.  I don’t know how much I’m looking forward to next quarter, but the plus side is that I’ve got a whole new set of classes, one of which is with one of my favorite professors from USC.  I’m TAing, too, which always makes life sort of fly by.  I hope my sections are good!  Still not sure whether I can audit my neurobiology class, or whether I’ll just take that pass/fail, but either way, I’m looking forward to change up.


What a great day I had!

I only have an hour of classes on Thursdays, so they’re basically my best day.  But today was especially great.  We’re doing student presentations in semantics, so all I had to do was hang out and listen to some folks chat.  Went and had lunch out in the sunshine with Lewis, and hung out a bit in the library.  Picked up a book I needed, and also a Dickens book I think I’ll read.  I’ve never read any Dickens, but I’ve been rather into the Victorian-esque stuff for the last few years, and it seems like this isn’t far off that mark.  Though truthfully, seeing Masterpiece Theatre’s “Oliver Twist” was the real inspiration.

Came home and had a very nice lazy afternoon getting some small work done.  Decided I wanted to do something exciting with my evening that involved more than television, though… so I made pizza!   From scratch!  It was so fantastically exciting, I don’t think I can really capture that in the old blog.  I really should have taken pictures… but anyway.  The dough making was really, really easy (much easier than making bread!) and it only necessitated that Lewis and I walk to the store to pick up our topping ingredients while it rose.  I love it when your dough rises just exactly like it’s supposed to!  By the time we had shopped and walked back home and cleaned up a bit, it was all ready to go!  So we made half a sausage/veggie combo, and half a barbeque chicken.  Good gravy was it good.  If for some reason I had mozzarella around regularly, we’d be completely doomed.

And in the meantime, Lewis tried his first go at making Tabasco-style hot sauce!  Turned out pretty darn good.  It’s just got jalapenos and habeneros and vinegar… but it’s really sweet and nicely spicy.  Put it on the pizza and it was great.  Looking forward to maybe making eggs or potatoes or something with it for breakfast.  Seems like the perfect topping for some breakfast spicyness.  Mmm.  We’re spoiled people.  Full of our own handiwork.

Ooh, and we watched Bill & Ted over pizza.  Can you really top that?  I don’t think so!

So chilly

First of all, this new wordpress is fantastic.  I was waiting to do this update until I was out of school just in case I mussed something up and had to spend a million hours fixing it. Instead, I’ve had unorthodox success on two updating fronts.  I’ve updated wordpress, and added new and exciting widgets (including the aforeposted twitter feed) and everything went as smooth as can be.  I can’t believe it!  But what’s more, I also upgraded Ubuntu today with only the tiniest of hiccups!  Had to swap out my network manager (but the standard one is crap anyway) and I still have not quite figured out why my outgoing mail isn’t working… but otherwise, total success.  Sound working, wireless is working, display working, even *suspend* is working!!   I love you, computer.  I love you, you wonderful old Ubuntu.  And I love you, lovely people at Za Reason!

This has been a muchly successful day.  Got up at my leisure, made breakfast (mm, cinnamon tortilla rollups and yogurt), and watched silly SNL videos.  I made split pea soup in the slow cookers, and baked a loaf of multigrain bread to go with it (graham flour + cornmeal + white) .  Got the tree trimmed, and Lewis set the train up around the bottom.  The track is really great this year – so long and curvy!  Lewis also did the laundry, so we’re all well set up for tomorrow.  Watched an episode of Ken Burns’ Jazz,  and did some internet window shopping, getting myself ready for maybe going actual-type Christmas shopping tomorrow.  I even read a little, and hung up the instruments mom brought up for the music room.  Yay!   It’s so fantastic to get to spend a day doing random stuff… I’m getting so much done, even though it’s all the little unimportant-type stuff that gets passed off while I’ve got real school-type work to do.

Also, it only got up to 45 degrees, and it rained all day.  We were going to put the Christmas lights up on the house, but it just was not very inviting outside.   Our rain meter says .43 inches for the day so far!   It is nice to have some decently wintry weather though, since it’s been so mild for so long.  Not that I’m getting actual snow, Seattle-style or anything, but you know.  I’ll take what I can get.

I should also mention that we had to parties in a row!  After classes finished up Friday, we had a we had a gathering of Linguistics folks over to watch William Shatner speak Esperanto.  It was much more well-attended and festive than I had anticipated, and I’m really pleased with the whole endeavor!  People stayed rather late (for academics coming off finals week anyway) and there was much good bonding and joking and such to be had.  Yay for our department.   We spent yesterday at another party, this time Nina’s engagement party, full of all our good ol’ work folks.  I really miss all those guys!  It was so wonderful to see Nina & Jimmy and Charlise, Scott, Christine, Julian, Raffaella, Chuck, Hope, and Kim!  Chidi and Stefano were both out of town, but perhaps we’ll get to see them soon.  We promised KE we would stop in for tea time if we’re going to be in the area doing Christmas shopping.  And I believe we will!  Lewis and I already have a Rattos and tea trip in mind.  Yum.

Ah, life is good, isn’t it?  I’m looking forward to my classes next quarter, and have found I really don’t even care what grades I got this quarter.  I do anticipate A’s in both, if I may be a judge of my own work and its quality, but I find that I don’t have nervous grade checking heart palpatations like I might have as an undergrad.  I just check every day like habit, and feel like the inevitable grades will show up sooner or later.  Probably more like later.

I don’t even know what to do with the rest of my night.  Snuggle up to Lewis and read?  Go to bed early?  Start an art project?  The possibilities are endless.  Endless!

Crushing (tiny) dreams

Well, Laurie, it’s Monday.  Night.  You made it!

Sadly, Mondays are my easiest day.  I only have TA stuff to do today, no sections, and no classes.  But for all that, I got a heck of a lot done.  Woke up early-ish, and got a paper read.  Made a reaaaaally good roast beef sandwich and got myself to campus.  Class went well, and I got a chance to finish grading the homeworks this afternoon.  Had our weekly TAs meeting, which at least left me feeling like I’ve got a bit of an idea what to do in sections this week.  We’re moving our meetings to Wednesdays, actually, which makes me a little worried about getting instructions for that weeks section right before we meet… but I think we’ll be fine.

Came home just in time to go with Lewis to take the Boo to the vet.  We were going to get him all vaccinated for his outdoor activities these days.  Got a little distracted by the vet, though, who confirmed my suspicions that Mr. Boo shouldn’t be an outdoor kitty without claws.  So Lewis and I hemmed and hawed for a while and finally decided it was time to curtail his outdoor activities, mostly for his own safety, but a bit (I must admit) for our pocket book as well.  Can’t afford much in the way of expensive vet visits or vaccine regimes… but I think it’ll all be okay.  Boo wasn’t “utilizing” the outdoors much when we weren’t out there already, and what little he did outside of our yard has so far been getting in trouble and getting into fights.  No es bueno.  Compound this with the worry I was having about him being an outdoor kitty and Lewis’ mom’s cat Myles just having been diagnosed with FIV… I’m feeling okay about this decisions.  It is going to be a little heart breaking trying to get Boo to understand he can’t go outside any more.  He was awfully cute prowling around out there.

Post-vet, I made dinner and chatted up Lewis about Trubetzkoi.  Got our laundry folded (we’re going to be all wrinkly this week… oh well).  I also made pumpkin chocolate chip cookies!  They’re rather tasty.  All cakey and chocolatey.  Got the grades uploaded into the gradebook, Lewis finished our draft of the homework for tomorrow, and all I have left to do is print that out, and get myself to bed.  And lo, it’s sounding pretty great right about now.