Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Monday, December 29, 2008
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
I think I did in one day what usually takes me three or four days to accomplish.
I cleaned house and made "Sunday dinner" and baked cookies. Four kinds of cookies.
It was an excellent day for it, cold and rainy and gray.
Once my cleaning was done I went to the market to stock up on the essentials: butter, flour, brown sugar, nuts and chocolate.
I have two of the cookie selections posted already over at the food blog. These are both pretty easy, but tasty and definite crowd-pleasers:
Oatmeal-pecan shortbread with chocolate
Huh. I just realized the oatmeal-oatmeal thing.
But the shortbread does not seem like an oatmeal cookie. The oats just give it a nice texture and a little nuttier flavor.
And I have posted the shortbread recipe here and on the food blog before, but since I fancied them up with chocolate, I figured they deserve another mention here.
The oatmeal fruit bars? Those are all about the oats. My favorite part of those is the crumbly oaty part. Yum. Maybe the butter in there has something to do with that.
OK. I have some chores and errands today. But at some point I will post the other cookies on the food blog and flag them here.
Friday, December 19, 2008
Why had I never had this before?
I am not sure. But now that I know how good it is, and really pretty easy, I will make it a lot.
My version of spaghetti carbonara is made up of small bits of several other recipes. And it is awesome: rich and creamy and so satisfying.
Thursday, December 18, 2008
It was a happy post about doing adopt a family for the holidays.
I am a little sad that I did not do adopt a family this year. I decided that with the unstable job situation, the economy and all that I needed to scale back on stuff.
The shopping for specific people was fun, but I tended to get carried away and spend more than I planned.
Instead, I am just doing a few small things this year:
--I put a big bag of food in the food bank donation bin at work.
--I bought a couple pounds of coffee to at Starbucks to be sent to the troops in Iraq
--I have not yet done this, but have plans to go buy $50 worth of toys Monday to donate to Toys for Tots.
It is not much in the grand scheme of things. But it is something, I think.
Because I know that even with my own worries, I am pretty darned lucky.
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
You will tell from the videos that it was really not at all acoustic.
Franz Ferdinand singing "Take Me Out."
Next is The Killers singing "Human."
That is all.
Monday, December 15, 2008
But this year I was in the mood to see some live music. And I was able to score a couple tickets to KROQ's Almost Acoustic Christmas.
The popular Los Angeles radio station puts on a couple shows that benefit Para los Ninos, a children's charity.
The venue, the Gibson, is fairly small with just over 6,000 seats. Ticket sales are tightly regulated by the station and Ticketmaster to try to keep brokers from getting a bunch and then selling them at huge markups.
So when they went on sale Thursday evening, I was not holding my breath that I would get any.
It was a pleasant surprise when I was able to get two, albeit for not-so-great seats. But the venue was small and the acoustics were good.
The other fun thing was that Kim, my friend from work, also got a ticket. Since she bought one seat, she was able to get a spot in a lower section and closer to the stage.
We made a plan for her to meet at my house and then she, MF and I would go up to Universal City (about 30 miles from my place) together.
We got there, parked and then found the Gibson. It is next to Universal Studios and the retail/restaurant complex known as Universal Citywalk. Since we had some time, we stopped at a restaurant and had a couple drinks before going to the show.
Once we had a happy little buzz going, we wandered back to the theater and checked out the scene outside. There was a large stage where KROQ DJs were interviewing some of the musicians. There also were people passing out beads, glow sticks and a heavily tattooed elf handing out candy canes.
this picture. The elf, the giant, the tattoos...
Paramore, the only group with any estrogen, came on after Kanye.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
It's not really like a whole new job since I work at the same place, just in a different department now.
But it has left me zapped of any creativity and energy.
The first week was watching other people work basically.
Most of the stuff I did in my last job doesn't not apply in the new job. It's all new software to do the work and all new ways of thinking about things.
I have felt displaced without a real workstation of my own. I got tired of waiting for "them" to come move my computer, so I did it myself over the weekend.
But I still have no phone at the new desk. I still feel unsettled. I am still learning the people and the new dynamic after three years of being so at ease with the people in my old department.
And I have felt pretty useless at my job. Which I hate.
I like to be busy. I like to fill the day so the day goes faster.
I know that as I get better with the new processes, it will get better in general.
I had a little "aha" moment tonight. After wondering all day if I had done the right thing and wondering if I would get this and be able to do the most basic things, I had the "aha" moment.
I can do this. It will become second nature.
Just like the process in the old job, this stuff will sink into my skull and become second nature.
Now if only I could get a phone.
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Saturday, November 29, 2008
It was taking too long. Maybe I had too many other photos and videos in there already.
This is a little video above is of the crazy yellow-fin snappers at Coki Beach during our last beach dive.
They were literally on our fins and in our faces.
This is what happens when people feed the fish.
Really, it's amusing.
I took a moment toward the end of our beach dive at Coki to look up and check out how the light was filtering through the water.
When I did, I saw this guy swimming at the surface.
It did not take him long to swim deeper, coming within about 1o feet of me. Then he meandered leisurely on his way.
OK. That is all for the addendum.
These are photos, videos and details from the last three dives of the St. Thomas trip.
We did our two boat dives, then, wanting to see the Coki Beach area by day after the night dive the previous evening, we talked Peter into giving us a couple full tanks to do a quick spin around Coki.
Before the dive we hung out with one of the beach cats.
Then off to the first site.
Grassy Cay, St. Thomas, USVI
Nov. 14, 2008
Logged dive: No. 28
Max depth: 65 feet
Bottomtime: 52 minutes
Below is a video snippet of manfriend's macho back roll.
And then the second site.
Lovongo Cay, St. Thomas, USVI
Nov. 14, 2008
Logged dive: No. 29
Max depth: 55 feet
Bottomtime: 50 minutes
And finally Coki to finish off the trip.
Coki Beach, St. Thomas, USVI
Nov. 14, 2008
Logged dive: No. 30
Max depth: 45 feet
Bottomtime: 35 minutes
From here on out I get lazy. You just get a photo blog. Captions, if I write them will be under the photos. And there are a couple little videos in there.
So really, you should keep reading.
We actually saw these dolphins later into the second dive. But I wanted to post them toward the top here to make sure people stuck around long enough to see them. Manfriend took the photo. I was too in awe to collect myself enough to use the camera. Plus these babies were cruising by pretty fast.
They were also far away, but he got a decent shot.
MF, who is fascinated by anemones, took the two photos above.
This is MF's picture of an eel that I spotted tucked into a crevice.
This guy runs a daquiri stand at Coki Beach. He was quite friendly and made a mean daquiri. He said this concoction, the Island Girl, was the specialty. It had strawberries, pineapple, mango, banana and rum. Maybe some other stuff. But once I heard rum I really stopped listening and just said "Yes, please!"
And yeah, it was awesome. This was my end-of-diving treat.
Now, even though I have been home for more than a week, it is just about time to bring this blog back to reality.
One more post, probably tomorrow, of some here-and-there shots around the island.