Just stuff.

Aug. 1st, 2013 10:56 am
sarea: (Default)
Still going through stuff with my dog. Poor little guy. )

As for the kombucha, my first batch was surprisingly delicious. I've already drunk three bottles. I know. It looks gross, but man, can that thing make some yummy brew. My kombucha had a much milder flavor than GT Dave's Synergy kombucha drinks. I let it ferment for two weeks, but since it's not super warm here, it probably needed more like three. I flavored it with a bit of pureed peaches and blueberries (a little goes a long way, so I filled each bottle with about a finger's worth of puree, and it infused the whole bottle) -- so delicious! I was as shocked as anyone. Because the two week fermentation period wasn't long enough, the brew I started with was sweeter than what you buy. My second batch is fermenting now, so I won't decant that for three weeks at least. What my bottles of KT could have used more of was carbonation. The bottles with blueberry had more fizz than the ones with only peach. And I've heard that strawberry makes the fizziest kombucha of all! :D

I sent my mom to the airport last night. Traffic was insanely horrible. I will miss having her around, and she was such a big help with Talis, who will now be alone while I'm at work during the day. :( But it also means that my weekends have opened up again, so [personal profile] adelagia, hotpot? lol

I've been playing Guild Wars 2 for the last couple of months. I finally leveled a toon to 80. I leveled about six different toons to 20, so that I could get a feel for the classes (or professions, as they're called in GW2) I was interested in. It took me awhile initially to get used to GW2 because I was so used to WoW, but now WoW is a distant memory. GW2 is actually a lot better in some ways, and it has constantly updated and dynamic content. It's just as rich and beautiful, and THERE IS NO MONTHLY FEE. :O That alone makes it attractive, and you could forgive it if it wasn't as slick as WoW... but that's not even the case. It's some of the best $60 (or whatever, if you can get it on sale) you'll ever spend, considering how many hours of fun you get out of it.

Also, I've been on the ASOIAF messageboard a lot. Boy, are those people hurting for fanfic, lol. And they constantly denigrate it because GRRM hates fanfic and the people who run the boards hate it, but it is so obvious that none of them have a clue of what "real" fanfic is -- the good kind, not the kind that's always made fun of. Anyway, I love, love, love all the theorizing that goes on. A lot of it reminds me of when I was studying lit, wherein it's just a lot of bullshit that people read into, that the author probably didn't even intend. :)) But there are some things that blow my mind wherein it's obvious the little clues are there, but I just didn't put the pieces together. This is why I love this series so much! It's clear though that in order to really keep up with the discussions, I need to do another read or three because everyone else is so well versed in the characters and details, whereas I'm like, "Who?" "Wait, that happened?" "That's a thing?"
sarea: (Default)
Work is running me ragged, physically and mentally. Meanwhile, my dog is running me ragged emotionally. He was starting to recover a bit from the affliction that still has him on Prednisone, but then a few days ago half his face became paralyzed. I took him to the ER, but the number one cause of partial facial paralysis in canines is an ear infection, and does not seem to be the case with him. In fact, his ears "look great." Argh. So it's either idiopathic, which is a fancy way of saying "unknown," or there's something more seriously wrong, like a brain tumor or something. I'm still hoping that it's just a case of canine's Bell's Palsy or something, so that it'll get better eventually on its own. But just to be safe, I have an appointment scheduled with the neurology department on Wednesday. I wish life would just LEAVE MY POOR DOG ALONE. I mean, even if it turns out to be a canine form of Bell's Palsy, in the meanwhile it is so, so sad to see him be so lopsided. He can't even BLINK, except occasionally with his third eyelid (incidentally, did you know that dogs have 3 eyelids? WHO KNEW) so part of my job is to make sure that his eye stays hydrated. As I said to Jade, as if my dog weren't high maintenance enough, now I have to blink for him! I even went and got him an eyepatch, to help with potential eye dryness. So cute, but so sad.

In other, less depressing news, I have decanted my first batch of kombucha tea! I let it ferment for 2 weeks, and even though it still tasted a bit too sweet to me, I decided to decant so that I could get the next batch going. I'm also not sure if I used enough flavoring or too much during the bottling process. After you bottle the tea, you let it sit out at room temperature between 1-3 days, during which time it starts to get fizzy (natural carbonation!). I'm on day 2, so tomorrow I'll actually get to taste the flavored KT for the first time. I'm actually not expecting it to be good this first time. I mean, I'm totally new to the process, so I figure right now is experimentation time to learn how to get the KT to the level of acidity and flavor that I want. What's pretty exciting is that I grew a baby SCOBY, just like I was supposed to! Woot!

It is NOT pretty. )
sarea: (stiles)
My Best Picture nominees viewing continues!

Beasts of the Southern Wild: Loved it. I can't believe Quvenzhane Wallis was 5 years old when she was cast! Love the story, the directing, everything. It reminded me a lot of Whale Rider, which is a movie that I love to pieces. However, like Whale Rider, I suspect that the various nominations this movie got are its "awards" -- as in, congrats that you made a wonderful movie, we'll acknowledge it with these nominations, but we're going to give the actual awards elsewhere. Not having yet seen Life of Pi or Amour, right now I'd give directing to Benh Zeitlin for this movie.

Lincoln: I wanted to think it was amazing, but I just didn't. I found it really boring, actually. I have the greatest appreciation for Abraham Lincoln himself, but I'm just not that interested in the Civil War (I'm more of a WWII buff). It's one of those time periods that I don't particularly enjoy reflecting on for entertainment purposes, watching people try to defend slavery, countrymen killing countrymen, etc. Daniel Day-Lewis probably has Best Actor in the bag, but I'd love to see Bradley Cooper pull off an upset, he was so impressive in Silver Linings Playbook. It's not going to happen, though.

Other than Life of Pi and Amour, I still need to see Django Unchained and I'll be done!

Met K for dinner last night. We went to Brave Horse Tavern to try their Sunday night fried chicken dinner. It was OK. The chicken wasn't as good as at Ma'ono, the collard greens were too sour, and the biscuits and gravy were way too heavy. What was really good was their homemade soft pretzel with three different kinds of mustard, and their plain cheeseburger. Yes, we ate all of it. Stop judging us.

Talis still has an ulcer in his right eye. :/ Poor little thing has been wearing one of those Elizabethan collars for more than a month now. I was hoping it'd heal up on its own while we were in LA, but it didn't happen, so now he has to have a "procedure." That's been scheduled for Jan. 25. Meanwhile, I've been buying his antibiotic eye drops from the vet's office for $30/bottle. While in LA I needed it replenished. Rite-Aid wanted $40 for it and they couldn't get it until the following day. I ended up going to Costco, which not only had it in stock that very day, but it only cost $12.80! Crazy.

I completely forgot that I have a cooking class tonight -- Singaporean chili crab -- and took the bus in to work today. D'oh!! Now it's going to be a mad rush trying to get home and take care of the pets before heading out again. >


Aug. 21st, 2012 10:40 pm
sarea: (Default)
Back from Vancouver, where [personal profile] adelagia, [personal profile] slitherhither and I had a blast. We didn't kill each other and remain friends, which is always a 50/50 prospect when traveling with people for the first time. So yay for that! :D More details about the trip. Warning: Many pictures of food contained herein. )

Edit: I was so concerned with detailing all the food we ate that I didn't make note of the non-food stuff. >.> So I am copying and pasting some other stuff from [personal profile] adelagia's post on this exact same trip, for posterity. Non-food stuff! )
sarea: (sherlock & watson)
I've been doing some reading. I highly, highly rec City of Thieves by David Benioff (one of the exec producers of HBO's Game of Thrones). It was the kind of book that I wanted to avoid reading because I didn't want it to end, it was so good.

The short summary: The story of two young men on an impossible adventure.

The longer summary: )

It's now in my top 10 list of favorite books of all time. Or it would be, if I had such a list.

I've also read Matched, by Ally Condie. It's a teen novel set in a dystopian universe, which is one of my favorite genres. It's also got a very guilty pleasure premise. The summary. )

I was meh about this book. It's not written very well; the writing is immature and unsophisticated (like Stephenie Meyer, but not quite that boring). I thought it was written by a teenager, someone like Veronica Roth or Kody Keplinger, who are like 19. But Ally Condie is an adult. In fact, I think she used to be an English teacher (which is kind of scary). In any case, I like the characters and the story OK, except the universe and everything in it could be so much better, richer, more interesting. I'm reading the sequel right now, Crossed, and I'm at a point where I'm almost bored enough to stop. The Hunger Games is still the best teen dystopia novel I've read. Veronica Roth's Divergent was fairly good too -- not as good as HG, but better than Matched. I'm also in the middle of Scott Westerfeld's Uglies, which is better written than both Divergent and Matched, but whose heroine I don't like much so I've been "in the middle" of the book like forever.

Any other teen dystopia novels you've read and liked? Or just plain dystopian novels you've liked, period? I always worry that I'm missing out on a good one. ;)

Round two of the homemade bacon experiment was a rousing success. I can't stop thinking about it and it's making me really, really hungry. More details and pictures later.

Talis's eye is looking better and better. His procedure is scheduled for Thursday, but now I'm wondering if it's really necessary. I would hate to spend that kind of money and have him go through that kind of pain/stress (he'd have to be sedated and anesthetized) if he's actually getting better on his own. The eye doc said that if he hasn't fully healed on his own by now, he probably won't -- except that, like I said, the eye's actually been looking really good these last couple of days. I may just push the procedure out so I have a few more days to look at the eye and make a decision. I also don't want to jeopardize his eye healing the best it can just so that I can save that money. It's really the fact that spending the money AND doing a procedure on an almost healed eye makes no sense.

Played Pandemic with K on Sat. and she really enjoyed it. We were waiting for D but he didn't come home until like midnight, at which time I had to leave. K and I played 4 or 5 games, and we won 1 (which is better than my and [personal profile] adelagia's playing sometimes, though to be fair T and I play on a higher difficulty level). The weirdest thing is that we did not repeat ONE ROLE! We had different roles for all the games! Not just between ourselves, but even including the other! Sometimes I shuffled, sometimes she did. I mean, what are the chances for that to happen, when there's only like 13 roles total? That's never happened when I've played with others -- at least one role shows up again (usually T being the epidemiologist lolz). It was cool because it helped introduce nearly all the different roles to K.

I've started watching Ringer. It's kind of nonsensical, but I'm enjoying it so far. I was already pleased with Ioan Gruffudd on the show, but now Jason Dohring's shown up and I'm even more pleased. :D
sarea: (Default)
Every day should be like yesterday. Except for the part where I had to work in the day time. Anyway, had a blast watching The Hunger Games with [personal profile] adelagia and K, then going to Boiling Point afterward to have us some delicious stinky tofu hotpot. LIFE DOESN'T GET MUCH BETTER.

So, the movie. Most people who are going to see the movie have read at least the first book, so I'm unlikely to spoil plot points, but in the interest of protecting those who don't want to know how the movie compares (and who haven't read the books), I'm cutting this. Hunger Games spoilers -- movie and books. )

Talis had his follow-up eye appointment today. The ulcer is smaller but not completely healed, so he's going to have to do the procedure. It's going to cost $750+ ughhghghgh. DO YOU KNOW HOW MUCH BACON THAT BUYS? And maybe the worst thing is that once that's done and he's healed somewhere down the road (soon, I hope), he's probably just going to do it to himself AGAIN because he's incapable of leaving Jaime alone.

Freaking Wisconsin and Michigan St., grrrrrrrrr. Syracuse should have been the first 1 seed to go. That would've done wonders for me. But no, the Badgers had to lose by 1 flipping point and Michigan St. totally choked (leading to me losing my first Final Four team). Both Michigan schools this year were big disappointments for my bracket, because I picked them to go much further than they did.

I have to babysit for K and D tomorrow. I'm going to bring over Pandemic and maybe when the kids are in bed, I'll play with their parents. :))
sarea: (robin/barney dancing)
The Hunger Games tonight with T. and K.!!!!!!! EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE. I hope the movie lives up to the book/hype. It seems awesome, and I have loved Jennifer Lawrence since Winter's Bone, but right now I'm skeptical of the actor they chose to play Peeta. Woody Harrelson as Haymitch and Elizabeth Banks as Effie Trinket seem perfect.

Poor Talis. My untrained assessment is that his eye is not getting any better. :( He has a follow-up appointment tomorrow, and I suspect they are going to tell me that he needs to take the next step -- getting his cornea scratched. That is going to suck, both because that doesn't sound pleasant at ALL, and because it'll probably mean that he's going to have to wear the cone for goodness knows how much longer. He's already pretty much lost all will to go on because he's had to wear it for so long.

Homemade bacon round #2 is almost ready. The curing process should be done by Friday and I plan to smoke it sometime this weekend. Speaking of smoking, I now have this book, which has really opened a whole new world to me of what I can do with my smoker. I mean, Chinese-style tea-smoked duck? I love that shizz! I never imagined I could make it on my own. Smoked garlic cloves to make the Best Garlic Bread Ever (their name, not mine)? Sweet! Only bad thing about the book is that it was written specifically for Cameron smokers, which I don't have, so I have to use the recipes as guidelines rather than following them exactly, because the Cameron smoker is a bit different from the Nordic Ware smoker.
sarea: (Default)
For a reason too long and involved to get into, I have been mentally and emotionally exhausted from the events of the last 2 months or so. That is why I am so VERY excited about tomorrow, which is going to be a Day of Fun with [profile] jade_okelani and [personal profile] ropo. First there's going to be lunch... then there will be pedicures and board games... then dinner (likely at one of my fave steak places), then X-Men: First Class (playing at the second run theater near me for $1.50!), and finally dessert. Wheeee! What I'm not looking forward to is the half hour of barking from Talis that we'll all have to endure.

And now, a meme!! Stolen from... all and sundry.

Comment with a character and I'll tell you:

* How I feel about this character
* All the people I ship romantically with this character
* My non-romantic OTP for this character
* My unpopular opinion about this character
* One thing I wish would happen / had happened with this character in canon
* Something about them I consider true, though it's just head canon/fanon

You can try me with any character or multiple characters; I'll let you know if I am ignorant of who s/he is/they are. :P


Aug. 10th, 2011 09:35 am
sarea: (cutie peas)
It's the last round of the YA Crush tournament and Jace (Mortal Instruments) is up against Zachary (Shade). I'm on Team Jace but vote for who you like here!

I have seen 3 more movies since my last post. Captain America, Thor (that's where my subject line comes from :P), and HP7p2. I have enjoyed them all. But I think I enjoyed Chris Hemsworth the most. I cannot WAIT to see the Joss Whedon-directed Avengers movie!

Are there any other Starcraft fans out there? I haven't played Starcraft II yet but it's pretty much the same concept so I still know what's going on when watching vids. Anyway, Day[9], a pro player who mostly shoutcasts these days, hosts "funday Monday" in which there's a theme, something you have to do, during your games. In this particular instance, it's that you have to lift off your command center in some way (playing Terran, of course). In part 2, starting around the 14 min mark, he shows two games that were so funny I cried from hilarity. The second game... omg the second game. I mean, I'm not a great player myself so I can't call them idiots or anything but... let's just say it was a comedy of errors.

[personal profile] ropo told me about the Thundershirt, which is apparently just some shirt that dogs wear that will solve excessive barking, anxiety, etc. Has anyone actually ever tried this on their dog or know someone who has? Does it actually work? Because if so, I'm getting one for Talis and never taking it off again.

Finally, have y'all been following the posting of stories on [community profile] dgficexchange? I believe we are nearing the end. I participated, but can't tell you which story is mine, obvs. But there have been a number of good ones (again, can't tell you which I liked or that would make it obvious which ones I didn't write), so if you like D/G you should check it out!
sarea: (mulan)
The pets and I did not have a good night last night. I had a rare night where I had trouble falling asleep, so I don't think I fell asleep until about 2am. At some point, Talis woke me up, whining to go outside. Then he woke me up again at some point, because he wanted to get under the covers (when I woke up this morning just his head was outside the covers, like a furry human being, so cute). I could not believe it when my alarm went off at 6:30 ... and then at 7:30 ... >.> It was so dark outside!!

Sooooo I was too late to catch the bus, which actually turned out to be a good thing because I have my annual physical this afternoon that I totally spaced on, so I needed my car. Driving into work, my XM Weather thingy kept saying "Extreme weather detected nearby" while I was trying to groove to Glee's Rocky Horror album, and I was like "OMG shut up!" but didn't know how to make it stop. I guess right now Seattle is beset on all sides by snowstorms and lightning strikes and monsoons and locust swarms and God knows what else.

While I would never try to claim the title of Biggest Merlin Fan Ever, I think this at least qualifies me for contention: I've purchased the region 2 DVD sets from Amazon UK, and have also gotten myself a multi-region DVD player in order to play them. Before doing that, however, I wasted a bunch of time trying to hack my current DVD player to be region free (nothing I found online actually WORKED, thanks for nothing, Internets), because I thought multi-region players were like $750 or something. Turns out, not so much.

Also? The Amazon UK site is adorable. It's all, "shopping basket" this and "dispatch to this address" that. And then there are like, different prices (all in pounds, so it's not a conversion thing) listed for the Merlin sets on different pages of the site, and then when you check out, the prices are entirely different again! LOL.

I think partly why I was having trouble sleeping last night was because my ears were cold. I somehow don't have any hoodies in my possession anymore. Looks like I'm going to have to get one for sleepy time.
sarea: (mulder & scully)
Jaime is making me insane.

Lately he has taken to wanting to remove all the books from the bottom shelves of the bookshelves. I don't know why he wants to do this. He just scratches at them until they tumble out. I've had to block them off in an ad hoc way to deter him. He particularly likes to do this when I'm trying to sleep, because when I'm up and about, and when I come home from being gone all day, I can tell he doesn't touch them (as they're all still on the shelf). I think it's because he likes being in the same room with me and Talis, but there's nothing else to DO when Talis and I are sleeping.

The other thing he's doing is that he wakes up around 5:30am and starts trying to "play" with things on my bed, like the remote control, or my mouse, or a book, or whatever. It wakes me up and it's brutal because my alarm is going to go off in an hour and my sleep's been interrupted. Usually he'll just start messing around in the room (like with the books) rather than go back to sleep, so then I always have to kick him out of the room and close the door (the door is otherwise open and he COULD leave, but he doesn't want to, he wants to be with us, only he wants us awake) so I can get that precious hour of sleep.

It's come to my attention that I have 113 hours of vacation subject to forfeiture if I don't use them by the end of the year (it's really annoying that we aren't allowed to just cash that out). And that's just going to go up as the days pass by and I work more. What this means is that I'm going to be cramming in a lot of time off. I've decided to go to LA for the week of Thanksgiving (which I never do), come back, and then two weeks later, leave for my winter vacation. Plus I will take about 3 extra-long weekends before Thanksgiving. This crunch happens almost every year. I wish I were better about spacing out my vacation, but I tend to want to hoard it just in case I need it... and then this happens. Sigh. In any case, I'm going to bring Talis and Jaime with me when I leave in November, then they will stay with my parents until I return in December, and take them back with me when I come back to Seattle in January. Since that's over 30 days, I'm going to have to find an inexpensive vet down there to do a general check up for them so they can get their health certificates that they'll need for traveling. I'm also thinking I might be able to carry Jaime onto the plane with me (Talis has to go in the cargo hold), in which case I'll need a soft carrying case for him. Except, scratch that, if I carry Jaime on board with me I'll have to check in any luggage, and that costs extra, so he might as well go in the hold as well.

I've completely rediscovered my love for XF, but I enjoy it on a slightly different level than I did when I was deep into fandom, over a decade ago. I'm going to start posting my old thoughts from various episodes here, probably undiluted for the most part, just in case that website ever goes away I'll have some record. If you read them, yay, you're welcome to take a trip with me down memory lane -- just keep in mind that these are thoughts from a much-younger me. :D

My Intro/Caveats from 1999 )

XF 'Squeeze' )

My favorite quotes from this ep. )
sarea: (talis/jaime)
Sorry for blurriness, but it is so hard to get photos of the two of them together because they're constantly moving! Anyway, a recent cute photo of Talis and Jaime. I like to pretend they always get along this well.

Talis & Jaime Being Friendly

Also, a wacky coincidence... I got contacted by someone whose name is Jaime, and her fiancee's name is Talis. O.o She found my LJ because she was searching for her wedding site or something. Anyway, she asked for a couple of photos of my pets because she wanted to share with friends/family about "the other Talis and Jaime," which is a cute idea. But how crazy is that?! Talis and Jaime, getting married! LOL. Makes me want to dress up my pets in little wedding outfits. But I won't.

The car saga seems resolved, for now. Knock on a lot of wood.

I picked up the Pontiac from the Nissan dealership on Friday. They made me sign a form that said I understood this was a one-time fix only, that they did as a courtesy (due to my threatening to be a huge PITA). Joe said, "I'm going to be candid. It's an older car and it IS going to break down again in the future." Which, of course, is something I realize. I just hadn't expected it to break down the day after it left their lot.

I left the car at work overnight, then the next day my mom and I picked it up. We drove a couple miles to a local lube place I've used before, when I had my Corolla -- I remembered their oil change to be really inexpensive and I had liked the guys there. The oil change was $25, which I think beats even Wal-Mart's price. I asked them to let me know if they found anything else wrong with the vehicle. They said the car was leaking oil from at least 3 different places, and if I planned to keep the car, I should probably fix them (I guess the valves were bad), but if I wasn't going to keep it, then maybe not. I asked how much it would cost to fix; they quoted $660. I asked if the car was dangerous to drive. They said no, but that it would use oil a lot faster than normal. So I'm probably not going to do any repairs. Even if I changed the oil every month for $25, that would be much more cost effective considering I'm not planning to keep the vehicle. Also, if at this point that is the worst thing that can be said about the car, it's more than I could have hoped for.

My mom and I opted not to take it on the freeway, and drove it home (well, she drove it, following me) on surface roads. It made it home, and I have been able to use it a couple of times for short-distance trips, so, so far it seems to be doing OK. *crosses fingers*

Many people have advised me to sell or trade in the car as soon as possible (after I get the title). If I sell it privately, I'll disclose what I know of its recent problems and that it needs those valves replaced. I'll bet some car-minded person could fix those valves at very little cost, since most of the expense is in labor. Alternatively, I could trade it in at a dealership for another vehicle (a Japanese car for sure, if I go this route), and will likely get much less for it, but without the hassle of selling it privately. I can't sell OR trade it until I have the title, though, so hopefully the car will hold out at least until then.

I finally took some photos of both cars. If you're curious. Photo intensive! )
sarea: (talis/jaime)
Jaime was grooming Talis! Licking his fur in intense concentration! LOL. So cute. Meanwhile Talis was just licking himself. So selfish.
sarea: (Default)
Had a pretty uneventful and relaxing weekend, though it passed by all too quickly. I thought 4 days would feel like longer.

My pets, especially my dog, would beg to differ about the weekend being "relaxing." Talis basically spent all of July 4 in his carrier kennel, hiding from the fireworks. The couple of times he ventured out, his entire body shook uncontrollably. It's the saddest/cutest thing. This happens every July 4, which is why I knew to take out the carrier kennel so that it would be ready for him to hide in. Jaime was only fazed during the particularly loud bangs (they're SO loud where I am that the big ones actually make the house shake, and things fall off the walls if not completely bolted on), and when those happened he hid under the bed. But he ventured out once in awhile -- unlike Talis, who was basically like, "I live in this carrier now."

I'm still not a Tweeter, but I do have an account -- sareaokelani -- for the day when I decide not to live in the Dark Ages anymore. I haven't even Tweeted once, lol. I checked the account today, though, and I was following 20 people/accounts! HowTF did that happen? I hadn't even heard of 99% of them! I wouldn't have followed them on my own (to be honest, I wouldn't even have known HOW to follow them until like 3 weeks ago), and no one else has access to my account. So how the hell did I start following them? Does Twitter just randomly add you to ones over time, or is there a way people can force you to add them, or what? I'm disturbed by all of these scenarios.

A few posts ago I shared some pics of my garden, including a lovely catnip plant I was growing in a pot. Well, it's no longer lovely. :-( It's been violated!! I went outside the other day and saw it had been knocked over. At first I thought it was the wind that had caused it, but it's a pretty heavy pot so that seemed odd as it hasn't been very windy. I turned it right-side up, and it was in a shambles. A few branches had broken off, some of it was just plain gone, as it no longer looked as full as it once did, and generally looked as if it had been mightily abused. And -- there was cat hair ALL OVER IT. Sigh. One of the neighborhood cats must've finally found it and made mad, fierce love to it, because the poor plant was looking positively wrecked. I could have wept. It had been growing so nicely. There's nothing I can do, though. I don't want to grow it indoors because it loves the sun, and my house doesn't get my sun. (Plus, in the house it'd be in danger from Jaime, or if I kept it in a room with the door closed, I'd probably forget to water it.) Outdoors, there's really nowhere I could keep it that would be out of the reach of a cat. For now I've placed it in between some tall weeds that keep growing back no matter how much I rip them out; hopefully it will offer some protection. I suppose I could try and put bird netting over it...

Speaking of the garden, I've had my second harvest from it. :-) I cut off the scapes from the garlic and made garlic scape pesto. I had some of it with farafelle and it was so. freaking. good. I've frozen the bulk of it (not that there was much) for later in the summer, when the tomatoes have hopefully come in. I was actually pretty productive in the kitchen this weekend, so go me. (BTW, K.'s verdict on my rocky road ice cream? "Best rocky road I've ever had." See Dad, SEE.)

Also, finished Empire of Ivory. It was very good and went quickly. It was only book 3 that really dragged on. Now I just have to hope the library queue for book 5 goes quickly. Of course, my turn still hasn't come up for Pride and Prejudice and Zombies... actually wait, I just checked my account and I don't even have it on hold. So I either imagined that I ever put it on hold, or my turn came up and I somehow missed it. Anyway, did you know that there's now a "prequel" to that book, but it's written by some other guy?
sarea: (Default)
Jaime's food problem

Still a total piggy. He eats all his food, and if Talis doesn't immediately eat his, Jaime will go after it, especially if there's any wet food in it. After all the reading I did about how dogs like to eat cat food because it's more strongly scented, I totally thought I was going to have the opposite problem -- the typical problem of getting my dog to stay away from the cat's food. Instead, Talis is as picky as ever, and I have to keep Jaime from eating dog food. SIGH.

The cool thing is that I was at Trader Joe's and their canned cat food seems to have all the good ingredients that Wellness has, but is much more reasonably priced -- $0.59 for a 5.5oz can (a 12.5oz can of Wellness costs about $2.50). I bought a few cans and will see if Jaime likes it, though I can't imagine he won't.

My dad complained about how I wasn't treating Talis fairly because I wasn't giving him the good wet food that I was giving Jaime (he's a dog person through and through, and Talis is definitely his favorite grandpet). I explained how I had tried wet food on Talis before, and he just wasn't into it, but to be fair I had never tried giving him the good stuff, i.e., Wellness. So I bought him a can of Wellness, and as per the usual, on the first day he ate it up and enjoyed it immensely. The next day? He didn't want to have anything to do with it. I ended up giving it to Jaime (I only mix in a tablespoon or two with his dry cat food, so it's not like it's really bad for him, as he'll get his taurine as usual).

Also, I have to admit at this point that I tasted both Jaime and Talis's cans of Wellness. >.> And it actually does not taste bad at all. Mushy, yes, but it doesn't taste like crap -- it tastes like real food. I can totally understand the people who are down on their luck and eat pet food now. Of course, you can get canned human food for cheaper than a can of Wellness, so they're probably not eating Wellness. Plus you can get fast food these days for really cheap that tastes better than pet food.

My Garden

I've had my first "harvest" -- five strawberries that ripened during our warm last few days. Unfortunately the birds had gotten to 2 of them. Still, they were very pretty (and yummy). :D I see a few more baby tomatoes -- yay! I think it'll be another 2 months before they actually resemble anything I can eat, though. Some of the garlic scapes are starting their second loops, but I'm still trying to hold out until they all have at least one loop before I harvest the scapes. However it occurred to me today that I could harvest the scapes at different times, so as to stagger the actual harvesting of the garlic heads... but that might be a bit ambitious for a first-time grower.


I've started Empire of Ivory, the fourth book in the Temeraire series. I don't think I mentioned when I finished book 3, Black Powder War... that's because it was pretty unmemorable. Not nearly as good/interesting as the first two books.

I'm also reading The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, but it's slow going because I find it hard to keep the unfamiliar names of people and places in my head. I'm lame like that.

TV Show Meme

Day 05 - A show you hate

My answer to this one isn't going to make me very popular, because everyone and their mom seems to like this show. Actually, it's a tie, but most people seem to like them way more than me. Anyway, my answer? It's a tie between all reality shows and True Blood. I hate them all. Reality shows I find vile in general. Not only are they totally lame (and I personally don't find them the least entertaining), but they are KILLING good TV. Why should networks fork out the cash for a great drama when they're getting the same ratings if not better with a cheap reality TV show? It's a travesty to me that so many people watch them. I weep, WEEP, for the days when they were rare and not a dime a dozen. Now I can only depend on HBO for quality television.

As for True Blood... I just don't get the hype or the love. I watched both season 1 and season 2, not because I enjoyed it, but because I was doing it for someone I loved and wanted to be able to share it. Well, that reason no longer exists. So I can let fly the fact that I think it's total dreck. The characters are super annoying, the storylines are trite and, in the case of season 2, a total mess, and the vampire thing has been DONE. And BETTER. (And no, I am not talking about Twilight.) There is not one thing about it that makes me want to tune in week after week to watch it. And yet, it seems to be universally liked. I guess this is just one where I am not in touch... I just don't get it, why it's compelling to so many people. The one thing I will give it is that I think the show has fine actors. They are, however, wasted on these characters and this show. I even tried to read the first book, thinking that it might explain the furor over TV series... but what I read of the book was even worse than the show, which is saying something. Seriously, after Twilight and True Blood, I feel like all I need to do is write some vampire dreck and I will catapult to overnight success. :P

Now y'all hate me for dissing all the shows you love... but I had to be honest.
sarea: (talis/jaime)
Dad's visit - the new car

Okay, so the whole point of my dad's visit was for him to help me make a new purchase/lease on a new car, because I'm crap at haggling/dealing with car sales people, etc. I'm fine at the outset, but once they start getting into the nitty gritty of the terms and moving things around and using terminology I'm not familiar with, I get lost. And then I feel really flustered and uncomfortable and hating the whole situation, because it makes me feel like I'm being taken for a ride without knowing it.

Well, no one could have predicted what ended up happening. It just wasn't meant to be, I guess! )

The Pets

Jaime/Talis: They're still not best friends or anything, but by this point they definitely tolerate each other's company, and from time to time, even enjoy it, I think. Sometimes Jaime will deliberately bat at Talis playfully, or flirtatously run by in order to provoke Talis into running after him, or nip at Talis's tail when he walks by. They constantly sniff at each other, and the other is better and better about letting the sniffing go on for longer and longer periods of time without complaining.

Then! Yesterday! They were both on the bed with me, Jaime was sleeping on the left edge of the foot of the bed, where Talis normally likes to be. Talis was next to me, got up to go to "his" spot, saw Jaime there, and instead of chasing him away or whining until I did something about it, he just flopped down just below him! And when he moved again, it was to sleep right next to Jaime, and their tails even touched! At one point Jaime woke up and meowed when he felt Talis on his tail, but he didn't seem overly concerned and didn't leave, just went back to sleep!

Photo evidence! )

TV Meme

Day 04 - Your favorite show ever

There were several contenders for this one, but in the end I have to go with Friends. I was never as obsessed with Friends as I've been with other shows, never wrote fanfic, wasn't completely invested in any one storyline for very long. For the most part I was content to go where they led. There were episodes that were hysterically funny and episodes that made me cry. It was probably the show my friends and I quoted the most from, and made us crack up every time. Almost every episode is memorable in some way, which is saying something considering it was on the air for 10 years. On rewatch you can jump into any episode from any season and enjoy it without having to watch everything that came before. It never fails to bring a smile to my face or make me laugh, which is a big deal on days when I find it hard to do either.


Jun. 17th, 2010 03:08 pm
sarea: (lucille pissed)
In the category of things that make me really effing pissed off:

(Cutting this so that my vitriol doesn't accidentally bring you down.) If you click, it's on you. )

In the category of things that make me happy:

1) Seeing the D/G gals this weekend, or possibly the next, we're still sorting it out. [personal profile] slitherhither, inquiring minds want to know, will you be joining us?

2) I went to Matsu Sushi two nights ago for dinner. I was craving Japanese food, and I decided to indulge myself. It is SO good there. The sashimi is so fresh, and the tempura is good, too (Rikki Rikki has the best batter though). The assortment of veggies is top notch; usually places just serve the same 3 or 4 veggies. It totally hit the spot and was worth every penny. I'm thinking of taking my dad there, even though he'll probably balk at the cost. (Not that it's SO pricey, but sushi in general isn't cheap.)

3) The Groupon yesterday was $10 for $21 worth of food at Fatburger. I was on that like white on rice. I'm like, if I have to live in this depressing place, I'm going to stuff myself to the gills with Fatburger, it might make things a teensy bit better.

4) I received my Stieg Larsson books and have started The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.

5) Talis and Jaime snuggling up next to me without fighting.

6) Dog.com selling packages of 240 rawhide chew sticks for $9. Talis LOVES those things and goes through them like candy. I let him go at it because he loves to chew and it's good for his teeth. Still, it's not cheap. A package of about 100 sticks can go for like $13 even at Target! And I haven't even found them at Wal-Mart at all. So yeah, getting that deal online was awesome. Obviously I should have looked for them before.

7) Finally, at long last, finding Bob's Red Mill dry buttermilk powder (at the Redmond Whole Foods). I've been looking for it for ages, because it's brilliant. Now, whenever a recipe calls for buttermilk, I don't have to actually go out and buy buttermilk, which is usually wasted after I use the cup of it or whatever that I need for my recipe. Now I can just make however much buttermilk I need each time, at least until it expires (about 2 years, but can be kept in the freezer for even better freshness).
sarea: (nph)
I feel like I should say something about the oil spill crisis in the Gulf. But really, The Onion said it better than I ever could.

A coworker and I were talking about our kitties, and he was saying that he had a practically brand-new kitty bed that his cat doesn't use, and I was saying that my cat doesn't like the treats I got it, so we did a swap. :D Hopefully Jaime will like this bed more than Zeke did! Last night was another good night on the kitty/doggie front, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed. Jaime likes to sleep pressed up against me, whereas Talis is on and off about it. This morning I woke up with Talis sleeping near the foot of the bed and Jaime at my side. Then Jaime started licking my face with his rough little tongue (I can't get over how rough cat tongues are; I much prefer soft dog tongues). I have weird animals. My cat is in some ways a better dog than my dog is.

The internet cam arrived, but I realized that I did not quite think things through. It's not wireless, and where I want to put it, in the living/dining area where I can get a decent view of most of the shared areas (but not into any rooms), doesn't have an Internet port. Argh! I don't think I have an ethernet cable that stretches that far, and even if I did, it wouldn't be an ideal solution. >< So now I have to look into a wireless one.

After some waffling I've decided to get Stieg Larsson's trilogy that begins with The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. I can't tell whether it's in the teen genre or not, but I also don't want to read too much about it because I don't want to accidentally spoil myself on stuff. It's got huge buzz right now.

I think I mentioned that the lease on my car is ending soon, and I haven't yet decided if I want to turn it in (and get another car), or buy it. My dad is coming up in a couple of weeks to help me car hunt. I asked him to because I really, really hate dealing with car salespeople and the numbers don't really make sense to me, etc.

Sooo, I started Meg Cabot's Airhead. Fun, quick read like all her books, but I cannot believe she went there. If you've read it you know what I'm talking about.
sarea: (trio)
Glee finale spoilers. )

Things have improved a bit on the doggie/kitty front, though I fear it's one of those things where NO ONE is really happy and everyone's getting a bit of the shaft. Talis still isn't happy about Jaime being around and probably feels like I am transferring my affection; Jaime is in a totally new environment with a housemate who threatens him at intervals; I'm stressing out about how to make them both feel loved and happy. Still, we had a good night last night so I'm hoping that will continue. A few cute/funny photos of Jaime sleeping. )

I have now used my Actifry twice. Once to make French fries, and last night to make these Korean-style crispy, sweet, and spicy chicken wings. Verdict: the Actifry does NOT duplicate the texture of deep-fried foods, as much as I wish it did. It more... emulates it. It does crisp things up, however it's more like oven crisp (but more evenly done). Still, for the little effort it takes to make something and with only 1 tbsp of oil, it's worth it. YMMV.

Finally, I was super productive yesterday. I made trellises for my square-foot garden with the nylon netting I bought online! I am pretty proud of myself. Now all I need is for the sun to come out and have some plants grow big enough to use them. I am going to try to transplant my indoor seedlings this weekend. Pictures of the trellises! )
sarea: (betty draper)
So... things have deteriorated on the doggie/kitty front. The neverending Talis/Jaime saga. )

I totally ordered a webcam yesterday so that I can install it and spy on Talis and Jaime while I'm away.

I guess tonight is supposed to be the Glee finale? Seems odd. It seems like barely any build up for what is supposed to be a big showdown. I mean, VA was shown as 'the impossible team to beat' from the very first episode.

Has anyone else heard of the Millennium trilogy by Stieg Larsson? The first book is called The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. I'm thinking about buying the trilogy because I'm like #489 on the holds list at the library, and something equally ridiculous on Paperback Swap.

OMG and I have overdue books at the library. This is the first time it's happened and I don't even know HOW. I'm usually very good about that kind of thing. I feel like such a bad member of society.


sarea: (Default)

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