Archive for August, 2008

Published by PaintingChef on 30 Aug 2008

Consider this a smoke signal telling you that I am, in fact, still alive.

Oh my sweets.. How I have ignored you. I am salty and sunburned. Windblown and relaxed. All is right with my world. I am at the beach and college football has started. I have spent the past few days catching up with old friends from Augusta and this past Monday, my oldest friend ever (as in… I’ve known her forever as opposed to her being in need of an AARP card) gave birth to her own perfect little miracle for which she has yearned for so long.

Can you tell I am in such a happy place right now? The snark… she has left the building.

I’ve read two delicious books while laying on the beach listening to the waves. I’ve made (and consumed) countless frozen drinks and created entire meals out of chocolate chip cookies and wine.

Feed readers have gone unread. Emails have gone unanswered. Work has… left my consciousness. This has been a perfectly relaxing few days and I am wholly rejuvenated. Until I have to sit in a car for 8 hours and cross the mountains (most assuredly in the rain because that’s the way I roll) just to make it home again.

Awesome.

In the meantime, allow me to make two book recommendations…

House of Daughters
and Queen of the Road.

And may I also say that no wonder I was a slob when I was such a stoner. Dishwashers can make for some perplexing work.

Published by PaintingChef on 21 Aug 2008

Feeling like I need to explain myself a little…

I know. It’s awkward, right? Letting you peek into my google cache? Do you feel like you know too much? I’d worked so hard to hide that I was a high-strung infertile psycho posing as a fabulous cook when really I can’t even find a good way to cook grouper. I have dry skin, an empty wall in my kitchen and I’m terrible with plants. Not to mention my flagrant disregard for the laws of iTunes and my refusal to watch the 3 seasons of “Weeds” that I bought on my laptop when instead I’ll just spend another 40 bucks for a program that I’m afraid to use.

Oh, and Joe Famulari? He’s a sculptor. And he did this piece that I first saw on Acacia and bought for my mother for her birthday only to find out that it was backordered until October which is not at all helpful. Fortunately I found it somewhere else and it is on its way to me. It’s called Joie de Vie and I just adore it.

Which I think brings us all up to date.

For the record? I had no luck with the xanax. And sadly I don’t have the sort of physician who understands the recreational benefit of something like that. Because apparently she has no in-laws.

Published by PaintingChef on 20 Aug 2008

Like going through my trash… but cleaner. And with fewer cotton balls.

Google searches I’ve performed in the past two weeks…

1. Chinese adoption process
2. Buy x-a-n-a-x online
3. Are lilac shrubs evergreen
4. Community supported agriculture, Louisville, TN
5. Why can I not find Arrested Development on television?
6. Electricity wattage of a ceiling fan
7. Reclaimed tin artwork
8. If I buy a TV show on iTunes, can I burn it to a DVD and watch it on my television?
9. Foothills Fall Festival theatre in the park
10. Grouper recipes
11. Small batch baking
12. Tiny cheesecakes
13. Hempz herbal moisturizer
14. Joe Famulari
15. Bottle Shock

Anyone care to analyze me?

Published by PaintingChef on 13 Aug 2008

Those things which we do not talk about? Let’s talk about them for a minute…

Very few things are sacred on this website. But one thing I’ve made a conscious effort not to discuss in anything other than a joking manner is my in-laws. By reading between the lines, I’m certain it’s no surprise that the relationship is strained at best and occasionally dips into the hostility territory. I mean my god; I’m a DEMOCRAT who doesn’t like MOTORCYCLES and I SLEEP LATE on the weekends. I might as well be the anti-Christ.

I have my doubts that their internet prowess is enough that they would find this website but it could happen. Not that anything I’ve said about them on here are things I wouldn’t say to their face without hesitation… (Hi! You make me crazy! Stop showing up unannounced! Sometimes I serve macaroni and cheese for dinner! And hot dogs! This doesn’t mean that I’m not taking care of your son! Even though I make him fold his own underwear! And he does the floors! Guess what else? He might not vote Republican! This is what an evil and diabolical laugh sounds like!) But its more that I don’t think Patrick needs to see it loud and clear on the internet when, trust me, he gets an earful of “Your mother and father are going to put me in an early grave” on any given day of the week. Because regardless of what does on between his parents and me… they are his parents.

BUT…

I had the most disturbing dream last night and when I woke up? I kind of wanted to throttle my husband. (What, specifically, does that mean? I’ve used it as a threat for years yet I have no clue what I’m actually threatening to do… anyone?)

I dreamt that we had been away on some unspecified vacation that must have not been wonderful because we were returning a day early. We finally staggered into our house in the middle of the night (Why were we so exhausted? Had we SWAM back from wherever we were coming from? Hiked? What?) only to find my IN-LAWS. SLEEPING. IN. OUR. BED. Not only that but they had rearranged all the furniture in our house because it “made more sense” that way. Also in residence? Patrick’s sister, her husband, their two children and the entire contents of every Toys R Us in the greater East Tennessee area. (They were in this dream for an entirely different reason and I shall excuse their presence entirely. His sister is actually really wonderful as are her children.)

So as I turn to slowly look at my husband to confirm that he is, in fact, just as outraged, confused and murderously… displeased at this situation as I am, I read on his face, quite clearly, that he is none of those things. They are there because HE thought it would be EASIER for them to look after our pets if they just stayed in our house. And he FORGOT to mention it to me. He then APOLOGIZES TO HIS PARENTS (caps=outrage? Right?) for waking them and then offers up that we will sleep. on. the. couch.

Is it just me? Does anyone else have these dreams where they wake up furious at their significant other for some dream-world transgression? Please. Share. Make me feel better about the Crazy.

Published by PaintingChef on 11 Aug 2008

A Programming Note.

I have a little… situation that I need to discuss. It’s something that has been going on for some time now and I suppose I feel the need to out myself about the… situation.

As we all know (nobody better than my jeans) I have a bit of a love for the cake. Any baked good, really. Yes I love to eat said cake but mostly? I just love to bake them. And for whatever reason, the baking bug hits me on Sunday afternoons. This weekend was no exception. But after throwing away half pans of red velvet cheesecake bars and brown sugar chocolate cake with cream cheese icing, I was hesitant. Throwing away cake is SAD. It’s probably wasteful too but mostly it’s just tragically sad to watch that baked goodness tumble into the trash can. (Also so very sad? Not having a garbage disposal.)

I was going to try NOT baking anything this weekend (I know… so very profound, no?) but after we went out and buzzed around on the lake and then floated in the pool to let the dog stretch her legs and get all wet and exhausted, I was feeling like something was incomplete. It was the baking. I needed to MAKE something.

Patrick, of course, pointed out that we throw things away every week because he forgets about them. (He forgets! About the cake! He claims it is because I store them in the microwave but I cannot help it. I like my cake at room temperature, NOT cold from the fridge. Unless it is cheesecake. That can be cold. But at least if it is in the microwave, it isn’t just sitting out on the counter where I can grab a fistful every time I scamper through the kitchen. Which happens a LOT because that is where we keep the wine.) (And I didn’t think the microwave was odd. My mom always kept things like that in the microwave. Until she went all exercise-y and stopped baking altogether. That was a sad day.) But being a good wife who isn’t all… damn you! You WILL eat my cheesecake!! I decided that I would give this small batch baking thing a try and sat down with a calculator and some recipes.

Okay. That’s a lie. First I googled “cheesecake for 2” and “small cheesecake” but the results weren’t all that helpful. Then I went to AllRecipes.com and used their convertor. Which was totally helpful just as soon as someone tells me how to use one third of an egg. I did finally find a usable recipe and it all worked out just fine but there was no way I was going to make THIS a weekly event. Math? On SUNDAYS? Bitch, please.

Then I found it! Which was both wonderful and sad at the same time. Wonderful because yay! Problem solved and all that. But sad because now it can’t be my idea. A whole cookbook devoted to baking for one or two people! I’m sure there are actually tons of them because hello! What a perfect gift for newlyweds! I’m certain Crate and Barrel offered it with a monogrammed sterling silver carrying case and matching aprons for $75. This is all a REALLY long way of saying that in the future, I’m going to feature these attempts on this website. Weekly-ish. Maybe that will spur me onto post a little more frequently. Because you know you miss me.

However I will not be featuring the cheesecake for two that I made last night. For a couple of reasons… the most obvious being that I didn’t take pictures. The other? Well… it wasn’t exactly pretty. But I promise that even if the recipes are a big fat FAIL that I will share them anyway. Because I don’t know about you but mistakes in the kitchen are VERY educational. For example… would I really have ever learned the difference in plain all purpose and self-rising flours had I not, years and years ago, made that one pound cake that just kept growing and growing and growing? No. I would not.

Besides. Twee little cakes are the most adorable things EVER. Feel free to play along at home.

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