Friday, June 29, 2012

Haze Grey +5

Getting harder and harder to write.
Today was annoying and stupid and maybe I’m just being hormonal but I can tell my attitude and my emotions are all out of whack. I don’t like it. So to kind of punish myself or something, I ran through two episodes of Tara instead of just one. I screwed up the program on the elliptical, but I can say I definitely hit 4.75 miles, and it was probably like 50 minutes or something. I guess my self-destructive body knows I did something good, because now it wants me to pig out. It’s weird, because my muscles don’t hurt, but my knees are starting to instead.

In other news, I’ve finished two new sets of crochet squares. Pics will be added when I get to SanD. I hope my girls are keeping up on their ends, but as someone said to me today, “it’s not like they have hours of watch to sit around and work on stuff.”

I also rigged some “test equipment” today, because I’m tired of getting sent all the way back to our shop because someone doesn’t know how to plan for a trouble call. It would have been prettier if I had access to a soldering iron, but I made it work just fine with some electrical tape.

PS. I now hate airplanes. I used to have a general affinity for them, thanks to my dad, but now… well… those jerks are loud and just ruin your day.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Haze grey +3

Forgot to write yesterday. Seems like everything is breaking all at the same time, we have been so busy lately.

My thought for the day is this: You can definitely tell which people are only children, and which ones were raised with brothers and sisters. Two of the gals I bunk with are fine and dandy and polite and friendly, and we try to stay out of each others’ way. Two of them must be on different schedules from me because I never ever see them. But one, oh the one… if I don’t make it out of bed before her in the morning, I’m screwed.

In other news, I may have lost my headphones somewhere inside my sleeping bag. But I ran 3 miles on the elliptical in 32 minutes. I know by most standards that’s slow as shit; almost 11 minutes per mile. I need to get down to a 10-minute mile or better, my goal is 1.5 in 15 minutes. [someone may need to check my math]. It’s cool because it seems like the way I arranged my schedule I was about 10 minutes ahead of one of said bunkmates, so it actually ran quite smoothly, and I still had time to eat. But if I’m going to do a repeat of that I need to go now, especially since I need to find my headphones… that way I can run and watch United States of Tara, courtesy of Miss J.T.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Haze Grey +1

Please. Thank you. Excuse me. Sorry. Smiling. Not being selfish. Not being greedy. Not being wasteful. Cleaning up after yourself. Chewing with your mouth closed. Taking personal responsibility. Respecting people for and despite their differences. Treating people equally. Asking for a favor politely and directly. When someone asks you for a favor, not acting like they’re asking for you to re-build the pyramids. Showing appreciation for people who do nice things. Appreciating what you have, and appreciating more what people give you, especially when it’s for no reason but the goodness of their hearts. Thanking people who deserve it. Making new friends. Reaching out to those who need a hand, or a hug.

The world would be a much better place if people practiced more of these behaviors. I know I’m not perfect, but I also know I wasn’t raised, as they say, by wolves or in a barn [although I did spend one summer in a renovated barn… nevermind]

On a side note… did you ever have a dream, where someone in your dream asks you if you remember [xyz] that happened, and you do, but you remember it because it was a dream you had weeks ago?

Monday, June 25, 2012

Haze Grey +0

Man, I got really spoiled at home. I haven’t worked this much in a while. Granted it is mostly BS, but you know. I got lazy. Today I got extremely intimate with the innerworkings of Bose audio systems, and let me tell you… waste of damn money. They’re like Macs, you have to just buy a new one. You can’t upgrade or replace a damn thing. They suck!

I hear that my babes ain’t doin so hot, so if any of you Tacoma folks are reading this, please drop him a line to at least say hi and remind him you’re around. You know he’s too stubborn to ask for much unless he really needs it, so please, if he asks for something, know that he must mean it.

I also went to the dentist today… at 7 pm… those guys don’t screw around! My mouth hurts but I really liked the dental officer. I’ll have to go back in for a few touch ups, so that will make this week extra fun. Is it weird that any time they give me novacaine I generally end up taking a nap while they work on my teeth?? Sitting at the dentist halfway inspired me though; I really do need to take better care of myself and work towards becoming a better person. I’m kind of feeling bittersweet though, because I always do this: get fired up, make grandiose promises to myself, then bail within the week. I need to turn my life around. I mean diet, exercise, mental and physical health, finances, business, career, attitude, balancing act, time management, etc etc etc. No time quite like this to start changing habits for the better. I’d like to actually succeed this time. I always feel compelled to make lists… but never follow through. I want to follow through. How can I track my progress?

My face is still numb, but I’m looking forward to getting rocked to sleep by the waves tonight… not quite as nice as having someone’s arms around me and three other furry someones monopolizing the rest of the bed, but it’ll do, I guess. I’m not looking forward to washing dishes in the upstairs sink.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Haze Grey

Well, it’s been about 5 hours so far and I’ve already smashed my hands up three times… twice out of clumsiness and only once out of anger. This morning I was almost excited, thinking I’d finally gotten a handle on this stuff… alas, not true, you can never truly be ready for this level of stupidity and attitude. But I do feel more prepared. I would rather be home, of course, but this is the next step in an exercise of lessening the blow. So far I’m actually optimistic. The spaghetti has been a big hit, although I’m still getting ribbed on the dubious quantity—it’s not a 55 gallon drum, so it can’t possibly be enough. For those of you who don’t know, my spaghetti is somewhere in the realm of legendary. This time I grabbed some on-sale rotinis though, and turns out they were gluten free, and therefore made out of corn. Corn noodles… yeah, just not the same. They feel a little funny as leftovers. Next time I’ll be more careful. I don’t do recipes really, but if you want to give it a shot, here’s the ingredients:

-hamburger meat
-italian sausage
-diced tomatoes
-fresh diced green onions
-loads of fresh diced garlic
-fresh diced onions
-mushrooms chopped to your desired consistency [I don’t like the way they feel so I cut them very small]
-grated zucchini
-Hunt’s spaghetti sauce [doesn’t really matter what variety, but it’s cheap, and comes in huge cans, and it’s all I’ll ever use]
-spices: garlic, garlic salt, oregano, basil, mixed Italian seasoning, red pepper flakes, minced onion, bay leaves

Sauté garlic and onions in olive oil. Add hamburger meat, season, cook almost through. Add sausage, cook through. Add everything else, season again. I can still guarantee you it won’t come close to mine, but you might get close. You can use whatever kind of noodles you prefer, but it won’t be quite right if you don’t use rotini.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Day Twenty-Three

Holy crap, where to begin?

It's been a busy week, what with hubby just barely recovering from surgery, then going back in with a fever. He's doing okay now, but it's going to be a long recovery. So, with that said, it's been tough to keep up on blogs. It's also been hard to keep up with the garden; seems like every day is a new adventure. Since Sir William visited, we have had not just two, but closer to TEN peppers sprout! The cayenne are coming in a little stronger than the jalapeno, but when they grow up we should have plenty of each. Today I replanted the cayennes, but since the jalapenos are still sprouting I think I'll give them another couple days.

The asparagus was about 5-6" tall... until Fat Cat decided to crawl into the greenhouse for a snack. Luckily I busted him and they'll be okay. I also learned the other day that asparagus is a) part of the Lily family, and 2) grows as a fern at first. Also, growing them from seeds like we did is apparently almost insane; they will grow to be at least a foot tall; you can't harvest them for the first few years, but afterwards they will go upwards of 10; and also, they apparently have a very intensive root structure, so trying to container plant them is fairly ridiculous. They are very tall and slender, and actually wrapped around each other a little bit. I stole some chopsticks from our evergrowing stash to give them something to grow around, but they don't seem to care.

This is all that's left in the pod starter pack... Not that I could really tell you what they are. I'm having rotten luck with catnip, have tried it two different times with no results either way.

This is all that's left of the mystery bush plant thing. I saved its life once and it did well for a while [you can even see it blooming here] but I think I finally figured out what's hurting it so badly--the plant lights. I think it might be something that does better with partial light or something; it just seems like the leaves closest to the lights are getting burnt.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


I used a pattern from Lily [the yarn brand, not my princess kitty] and screwed it up... but I liked the idea so much that I decided to try it on a smaller scale. I kept the concept and decided to wing it; the results were awesome. If you'd like the updated pattern that I used, let me know and I can type it up pretty quick.

The first two are photos before the borders. On the blue and yellow one, the border was a similar teal blue. I'm not sure what color border to do on the blue and purple, I'm thinking either blue or white. We'll have to see what I have on hand, I guess. I think the purple and orange ones are my favorite though. I think Crayola calls that color "macaroni & cheese." mmmm, cheese...

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

My cats all have hobbies...

Our fat orange cat is a foodie. At dinner time he will wander from person to person, politely asking for a sample. We figure he tries to eat the garlic in the garden because it smells like dinner. Our princess cat likes girl time; any time I get dressed to go out she wants me to powder her nose. If she is "naked" she will bring us beads or bows and howl until we dress her up. Over the past couple of days, we have found out that the little one--she's tiny even though she's now FIVE years old!--likes to garden with me. Whenever I go over to the greenhouse, she saunters up and mews at me. So I pulled out the wheatgrass [we bought it for the kitties anyway] and she had herself a grand ole time. She was kind enough to pose for a quick photo.

I moved the garlic out to the patio because it got some mites. I thought the fresher air might do it some good. Not five minutes later, this little sneak crawled into the bottom of the greenhouse and cuddled up next to the other planter for a nap.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Day Nineteen: I repotted the fool...

Heh, sorry, another attempt at terrible puns.

Hubby had a pretty nasty foot surgery today. He insisted I not spend the entire time in the hospital waiting room, so I begrudgingly complied and had a brief jaunt around Kmart [because I am a cheapy]. I finally picked up some repotting supplies--well, aside from the 10 lbs of dirt sitting in my apartment. Hubby was pleased and told me to go ahead and repot what needed it during his next percocet-nap. So, the roma tomatoes are now split up a little, and our rogue late-blooming asparagus has a pot to itself for now [his brothers are planted next to basil]. The strawberry and bell pepper have moved to larger pots that hopefully will be their endgame lairs. They will probably be too big for the greenhouse soon, and have to join Suzy the tomato plant on the porch. I repotted the rosemary too, although much later than I should have. Here's hoping it bounces back. The garlic is still... hit or miss.

you made my hands smell good.

I love these little compostable/plantable temp pots
she's getting so tall!

happy and sad garlic

The best news of all, however, pertains to our Cayenne peppers. Last night our good friends Irene and Sir William came by to do some recording on a last-minute epic metal track. While Irene was throwing down some growls that make the girl from Arch Enemy sound like a kitten, Sir William and I had a chat about how the peppers were being shy. Apparently I was busy drowning them! He told me to ditch the clear lid on the sprouter greenhouse, and not even 24 hours later, Bjorn and Sven [so named for their "metal roots"--ba-dum chhh] decided to pop out of the dirt! eeeee! Maybe more of them will sprout and we can have a whole pepper metal band.

Bjorn and Sven, thanks to the Pepper Whisperer.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Flowcharts are hard work!

I have some strange passion for flowcharts. 
They are just so logical and ordered, and when done right, can be very amusing. A friend of ours posted one today that was cute, but very incorrect from mine and hubby's experience... so he started ranting and I started taking notes. Then I put it together, sadly in MS Paint, but you do what you gotta do. If I had thought of it when I first started, I could have made it more colorful, but I was more concerned about getting all the blurbs in the right places. Now I know technically the shapes have meanings, but whatev. It is supposed to be snarky and offensive, and of course there's some profanity involved.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Day Seventeen.

Most of the plants we've got are doing well, although the magic is kind of over for most of them. They are no longer growing literally inches a day before your very eyes. I picked up some Starbucks "Grounds for your Garden" the other day and have put it on the 100-tomato and the garlic; we'll see how that does. We almost killed half the garlic by not replanting it in time, their roots got all mashed up and unhappy. They haven't quite bounced back yet, but I'm feeling confident.

Dunno if you can see this or not, but the chives are
blooming their weird little black flower thinggies.

The asparagus looks like asparagus!!!
That middle clump is about 3-4"

We are gonna have a lot of strawberries if this keeps up.
Can't wait to replant this sucker and give it more room to grow.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Shopping Win

First of all, picked up this beaut' off of Craigslist for $15! Got what I paid for though as it's not in the best condition. I think one day I might like to refinish it. It's a little rough around the edges and a little musty. I originally wanted it for yarn storage, but turns out it's actually way too big for that--about mid-thigh on me. ...Or maybe the chest is the perfect size and I just need more yarn.

Now, here's where it gets really good--as if a vintagey steamer trunk wasn't good enough. I picked up a simple double LP frame for hubby's Storm Corrosion vinyl [not pictured], as well as the small square frame for the insert autographed by Steve Wilson and Mikael Åkerfeldt. I need to re-mount this one, he just wanted to get it in the frame to be safe and sound and no longer in a tube.

Now, I can't go to Michael's without at least looking at the yarn, usually longingly. But lo and behold, on this particular day, Lily was on sale! 5 for $5! I also found a really neat generic one that you can barely see, and some "yarn bras." Looking forward to putting those to use, I hate floppy messy yarn. All said and done, I spent less at Michael's than I did at Guitar Center.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Long Overdue

Welp, hubby was chiding me that "you said that you would put other stuff on your blog too, not just girlie stuff! You should tell the whole story!" IE, things of the musical and geekical varieties. Yes, I made up a word. I'm allowed, I have an English degree. I was going to blawg about soldering a 1/4" cable for the show on Friday, but I didn't have enough time to sit down and do it so hubby took over. But I can still solder stuff!!

It's been a helluva couple days, what with work and running around and trying to sleep and clean the place up for next week... Tonight the local bro-in-law and his lovely lady stopped by on their way from Portland to Seattle. He's a bit of a karaoke nut, but hasn't been out in a while. Luckily in Tacoma you can pretty much throw a rock and find a bar that offers karaoke, even on a weeknight. Somehow I had the brilliant idea to check out The Thunderbird, aka, "T-Bird," or sometimes just, "The Bird." Our friends live a couple blocks away, and have been trying to get us out for many moons. The perk for us, aside from location, is that the Bird is one of--if not THE--last bar you can smoke in in Pierce County. Hell, in all of Western WA as far as I know. Yes, I know, you can smoke in Casinos. But whatever.

Long rambling story short: T-bird = win. Best karaoke guy ever. Sound set up is not amazing, but his karaoke system is all automated and shit. You can search his entire catalog, which is already pretty much way better than anyone else's, AND, if he doesn't have it, I hear he is pretty cool about working with you to make whatever obscure Chechnyan Polka Dance Rock song you can't quite remember the name of. AND! Best part of all, he has a rolling ticker on the big screen that displays the next three singers. No longer must you have the, "oh god I really have to pee but what if I'm next?" discussion in your head. AND! Just kidding, I apparently just like conjunctions today.

Ironically, the friend who'd been trying to get us to visit happened to stop by. And Irene randomly decided to sing a country song. Hubby was impressed... he doesn't realize that, especially for women, singing country is a lot easier than singing other stuff. Unless it's the really high lofty style vocals. I butchered some Bad Religion and have now sworn off karaoke-ing punk rock for good. This time I took notes and will make a mix CD for the car to practice with. I knew I should've done Cake instead.

Also, Irene brought me a book about "container gardening." WIN, plant reference.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Knot Just for Knitters

Sorry, I love bad puns. 
That would actually be a good group or book name, something kitschy. 
I'm good at kitsch.That being said...

I am SO proud of these!


I'd always been under the impression that you could only cable with knitting. And therefore, a small part of me was always jealous of knitters. Until!... I found a rough guide for cable-stitch squares at the Lion Brand site. I put it off for a long time because I was afraid it would be too tough. Honest truth is, it works up faster than just about anything else I've done lately. The teensy downside is you have to actually be able to see to count the stitches, so it's not 100% mindless, but close. It's not an exact cable, as you can see, but it's way more interesting than your standard every-day square.

I liked it so much, in fact, that I tried again with some variegated yarn that was sitting in my "random crap for blanket" pile. I love variegated yarn. Like, no joke. Don't ask me how to pronounce it, but if it's multicolor, I am most likely going "eeeeeee!!" on the inside. I love seeing how stitches versus colors play out. The best part about this set of squares is how the backstitch colors are the same in each row--I couldn't have made that happen if I had actually tried! So far most of the squares have followed that same trend to some extent.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Day Thirteen: an effin' flower!

 Holy Crap!

So once a week I have to be at work for 24 hours, give or take the work day before and/or after [if there is one]. I came home today to find this! The strawberry plant is now flowering. Out of nowhere. Once again, I thought it was gonna die, and my rescue plant pulls through.

In related news, half of our garlic started to get really sad. Turns out that stuff grows fast, and all the roots were all tangled and mushed. So we broke down and replanted it in one of the planter boxes. Then I had to go run and buy more dirt and another planter box, so we moved over the asparagus and basil. The asparagus had also started growing roots out the bottom of the pods. Our awesome pal Irene is going to score some leftover pots from her sweetie for us, and as soon as she pulls through we'll replant most of the other herbs. Still no word on the peppers, here's hoping they're just shy. 

So far the Miracle-Gro has lived up to its name, I just about swear by the stuff. I am still amazed by watching plants grow almost literally before our eyes. If I'm in this much awe, as a grown up lady, I can only imagine how magical it must be for children. This is definitely something we'll have to continue when we have a little mini-me. 

replanted basil
replanted garlic, hope it perks up!

Monday, June 11, 2012

This is a test...

Of my auxiliary blogging system.

If this message appears on said blog [because apparently the military does not condone reading or writing], then hooray, I will be able to post photos and brief anecdotes of my adventures around the world. Opsec permitting, of course.


Also, here is a picture of what I did last year.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Day Eleven

we're a happy family, we're a happy family, we're a happy family, oi oi oi
Most of our plants are growing like weeds! I mean, uh... yeah. You get the picture.When all of this comes together, not only will I be able to make homemade salsa from scratch out of my own garden, I should have enough ingredients to actually make spaghetti too!

Turns out there was a bit of a plant sale going on at Home Depot, so we picked up a  strawberry plant, a bell pepper, and a 75-cent Rosemary plant.

Suzy the tomato plant grew too big, so she now has to go outside. I think we'll bring her in for the nights because WA is still chilly.  Even with two whole shelves' worth of space, she was curling up and over the trays.

Here's a general update on seedlings:
I'm a total genius and didn't label what I planted where. The only way I can tell anything apart is because I know I planted them in alphabetical order, except for the Oregano, which was an afterthought a couple weeks later.

Oregano, 2 days old


Friday, June 8, 2012

Day Nine

It's Day Nine of the Great 2012 Apartment Greenhouse Adventure. If you need more info than that descriptive title, lordy help you.

Tomato plant [who still needs a name] has grown so tall that I had to rearrange the whole greenhouse to prevent it from hitting the plant lights. Cleaned out the water dishes for the carnivorous plants, Audrey . Re-potted and trimmed the mystery flowering plant. Asparagus has started sprouting, as well as parsley and cilantro. Tomato sprouts are so tall I had to uncover the whole salsa sprout group. Still trying to figure out exactly what I planted where so I can tell what's growing, but most of the herbs in the starter pods are at least peeking out.

I'm so proud of our little plant children! They're doing so well, especially the tomato plant. When I bought it at Wally World, I felt like I was rescuing it from the plant pound.

I didn't take any new pictures today, but since I just started this thaaaaang, I suppose one from two days ago isn't going to be the end of the world.

I think the tall ones are Basil, but I'm not positive.

Audrey 1, 2, 3, and 4; and Scarlett O'hara.
Yeah, I name my plants, so what, you wanna fight about it?

Introduction of Sorts

Today I made a blog. Yay me! I still always think about whoever it was that made the joke, "blog, ugh, sounds like something your dog throws up on the carpet..."

So, the other day, I accidentally watched some Martha Stewart show at work. Then I decided, "you know, if I were to ever join roller derby, I think my derby name would be Mosha Stewart." Hence, blog. Also, if you fail to catch the references in the title, I will educate you. It's a halfway point between the song "21st Century Digital Boy" by Bad Religion and that old film Renaissance Man. I think that term should seriously be resurrected, what with the the recent popularity of sites like Pinterest and Cut Out & Keep. There's certainly a bit of a homemaker's revival going on these days. Although I'm not 100% gung ho on it [I leave the canning and jamming and etc. to my hippie friend Irene], I do fancy myself a bit of a jack-of-all-trades. At least, the womanly and scholarly trades.

That being said, despite my strong traditionalist streak, I do kind of oppose standard gender roles as defined by society. I'm active duty military [shush] and don't have as much time as I'd like for hobbies, but when I do them I do them pretty well. I also have no qualms about getting my hands dirty and throwing down with the boys or carrying my own amp on stage in heels and pounding 40s of PBR during solos. Also, zombies.

Moral of the Story? I have lots of hobbies and I am egotistically proud of all of them. I needed an outlet to share my pride. This blog will follow my gardening, yarn, and culinary adventures, a hairball or two for good measure, and potential big gaps due to deployments. Rather than inundate the masses with extensive exposition, you can pick it up as you go along.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Day Six.


Best. Thing. Ever.

Hubby jokes that I pretty much am unable to cook anything without garlic. Quite some time ago, I noticed that one of the cloves in our cabinet was starting to sprout. Knowing that we were about to start the gardening adventure, I let it go and bought a fresh clove. When we finally got all the gardening supplies in, I squished all the cloves into some dirt. Yay! At first it was no big deal, but within a couple days
<<< THIS happened. Garlic apparently grows like crazy! And it's really no big deal. Our whole greenhouse smells like garlic every time we open it to check on things, which is also pretty amazing. Best idea ever.