Archive for February, 2007


I tried it there, I tried it here. I think the whole point is that I’m done with it. I really don’t want to lose touch with the friends I’ve made through and around blogging, but I’m obviously not making an effort to post. And when I do post it’s too much of an effort. So while I’m not going to delete this, I’m probably not going to be adding to it either. Consider this an indefinite sabbatical. And guys…Sally, Becky, Wes, Sarah, bella, etc. Email me sometimes!


Budget? What is this, Budget?

I knew when I decided to move into my own apartment that it was going to require a little tightening of the old budget belt. Or rather, I needed to acquire a budget belt and then proceed to tighten it. My budgeting normally goes something like this:

“I want that.” *check balance of checking account online*

“Sweet there’s still money in there.”

*check how long til payday*

*buy it anyway*

So those days are no more, I should think. I could end up in a Dickensian Debtors Prison–although that would involve punishment and some sort of time travel, but you just never know, would you risk it? On the advice of a friend I purchased (oh the irony in having to make a purchase in order to make sure you don’t spend too much money) this. It’s lovely, and I have to resist the urge to spend money just to get to enter it on my register and watch it magically subtract from my budgeted amount for that category.

But in the “one step forward and two steps back” that is my life, when I went to sign the lease I had a bit of a surprise. I’m going to assume it was simply a miscommunication, or me not understanding how things worked, but I was under the impression that I was to give the landlady a security deposit equal to one month of rent on the day I signed the lease and then follow that up with 1st months rent on the first. Duly budgeted–after some shuffling, nail-biting, and stealing from my savings.

Turns out she wanted security that day and then first AND last’s months rent on the 1st. Now, I’m a lowly editor, and just the rent takes quite a chunk out of one paycheck, leaving the other paycheck to cover mostly everything else for that month. So you see my dilemma here. 2 months at 2X the rent? No budgeting software in the world is going to fix that.

So you know how people tell you that if you’re doing things right you will neither owe anything, nor receive a refund from the IRS come tax time? If not, the wise people say, you’re just giving the government your money and letting them use it for a year before they have to give it back to you. Well, my stubborn insistence on getting that little token from the IRS has just saved my newly housed arse. So there, wise people.

That’s just plain crazy

Last night I was watching a rerun of CSI: Miami. You know, the one where the redheaded guy takes on and off his sunglasses poignantly and the long haired blonde girl mumbles everything she says. Yeah, that’s the one.

Anyway, the episode involved a woman who blogged while at work (who would do such a thing?) using a virtual keyboard projected with lasers (um, OK) which then transmitted to her PDA. As they were uncoding her scheme they mentioned that a lot of bloggers will leave secret messages within their posts by leaving a font the same color as the backround. And blog readers, savvy creatures that they are, know to highlight the text so they can read it.

The meeting to plan for world domination takes place tonight at my house. 6 p.m. BYOB

I just want to say how ridiculous I thought this whole plot was. It must have been written when they thought bloggers were going to take over the world.

Warning: Eggshells Ahead

One of the things I’ve found hardest about turning the corner from “I could totally still be in college” to “I don’t even know what music the kids are listening to these days” has been the gradual reduction of single friends.

And this isn’t even going to be a whining post about how everyone is in a relationship but me. I’m going to whine about something completely different: the trecherous path of being friends with guys who are married or in a committed relationship, when you are not.

If you knew him before he paired off, there’s the awkward fact that you probably know more about him than she does. That you know how long his average relationship lasts. That he called you and read you bad poetry when he broke up with Tracy and this girl is even more messed up than she was. Did he tell her about that time you guys kissed? Or maybe you haven’t known him quite that long and it’s more a matter of re-learning boundries. Am I still allowed to hug him? Would she think this was flirting? I guess she has to go everywhere with us now.

Another subset is when you become friends with married guys at work. You know that more than likely you see them more per week during their waking hours than their wives do. Is it weird to go out to lunch alone with him? Should you make him stop telling you when they are fighting and what about? Because, seriously, you wouldn’t your husband sharing that kind of information. How do you even bring that up?

Has any one else found this to be an awkward situation? Maybe I just over-think things. Is it the same for guys?

Emails from the edge

To: Meg, Jen

From: Lori

Subject: So big news…

I’m pregnant.

Just kidding! (Yeah, like that will ever happen.) The big news is that on Saturday I’m signing a lease for my very own place in Warrington/Warminster. It’s on ____ Road off of ___ Road. So between Street Road and County Line Road. It’s a tiny apartment above a private house. $750 a month including all utilities and cable TV. The bedroom is pretty big, the kitchen and bathroom are average, and the living room is teeeeny.

It all happened really fast. I was talking over with Melanie how I was thinking about staying in the area (more on that when we have dinner) and she gave me a website where you can look at the classified ads. And she pointed out that this place looked good. I called and went to look at it that night. And that was only yesterday! I thought I wouldn’t be able to move in because she wanted someone to move in immediately, and I wouldn’t be set and ready until March 1. So when I called this morning, I left a message that said “I’ll take it but only if March 1 is the lease date.” And she agreed!! I just have to pay her the deposit on Saturday. Stoked!!! I’m having a dinner party as soon as I’m settled, and you all have to come over and help me figure out where to put things to maximize space. My first place all on my own, I’m soooooo excited. So you’re stuck with me for at least another year.



A Good Sunday

I performed a bit of an experiment on Sunday, with mixed results. I need to bake a birthday cake for my grandma (we’re off to Queens on Saturday), and I had this crazy idea that I wanted to do a layer cake where each layer was a different flavor.I knew the problem would be that I would end up with extra cake…but hey, is extra cake really ever a problem? Really? If it is, I can come over.

So I began whipping up each mix and spreading them into 3 jelly roll pans. Then I baked each one for about 13 minutes.


After each layer was baked I had to cut them to size. I cut each about in half. I stored 3 of the halves in the freeze to do Gran’s cake on Friday. Then I decided I would try to make petit fours. (Little iced bite-sized pieces of lovely cake). So I made some royal icing and then colored it:



I cut the layers into cubes:


Then I made bitty wee cakes. All was going well up to this point:


But here’s where I started having problems. I couldn’t get the cake to ice on the sides. I ended up giving up after three:


Instead I ended up making a brilliant trifle, which I didn’t photograph. The three flavors of cake cubes, banana pudding, raspberry jam, and whipped cream in layers. I brought this in to work so as not to consume the entire bowl, and it was very much enjoyed. But I was disappointed about the petit fours.

A Good Saturday

I meant to post this yesterday but work kept giving me….work!

(All the links are to pictures on my flickr account except for the link to Tyler’s Web site and my local newspaper)

On Saturday, Melanie and went to Tyler Arboretum for their Maple Sugaring Celebration and Pancake Breakfast. I read about it in the local newspaper and thought it would be a good reason to get my butt off the couch and freeze for a while.

It was fun. First we went on a mini-tour (which I think would have been longer if it had been more than, say, oh 20F out [-7C]) with a volunteer who showed us how to spot a maple tree (each twig has one exactly opposite) and how they tap into the tree, 3 inches, to get to the area where the sap flows. Sap only flows when you have nights below freezing and days around 40, so there’s a pretty small window of opportunity there. No wonder the stores mostly sell the fake stuff, seeing as it takes 40 gallons of sap to make 1 gallon of maple syrup.

While cold, it was a beautiful crisp day, and I think I got some good shots.

While we were noshing on pancakes, Melanie remembered that she knew a good used book store in that area. I am always up for rummaging through a used bookstore, and she said this one was in a barn. We didn’t know exactly where it was, but we were feeling adventurous.

So adventurous, in fact, that when we saw a sign for a glass blowing studio we decided to go there first. It was a bit higher end for the way we were dressed, but we braved it. This particular studio, Simon Pearce Glass, only blew clear glass. I think the colored glass is prettier, personally, but something in me likes the purity of only producing clear glass and letting the beauty rest with the shape and function.

We did eventually find our way to the bookstore in a barn, too. Surprisingly, I did not walk away with any books. But it was a bit on the pricey side for used, probably about twice as much for the same books you can get in the used sales around here. Still, it was in a beautiful 3-story barn, there were thousands of books to look at, there were cats in the stacks, and a wood-burning stove. Good stuff!

P.S. Anyone know if you can actually upload pictures on WordPress?


A blog about my life and other stuff.

Oh, life is a glorious cycle of song,
A medley of extemporanea;
And love is a thing that can never go wrong;
And I am Marie of Romania.

Dorothy Parker, Not So Deep as a Well (1937)