Sunday, July 25, 2010

An Exciting End of Summer

Summer is wrapping up for me. My new job as a call representative starts the second week in August and promises to keep me fairly busy during daylight hours. My birthday is on Monday, and I have three scheduled events so far. Tomorrow I'm going pre-birthday shopping with two things in mind: a hot pink casual dress (preferably cotton) and a sheer, beaded bolero in a bright color. Wednesday, Jared and I are heading to Madison's east side to have a sit down lunch with my fantastic Gram and possibly (hopefully for Gram's sake) Aunt Sue. After lunch we'll be coming into Platteville. I'm getting my face on and going downtown for Ladies' Night with best-friend and confidant, Ciera. Friday into Saturday a group of friends and I are going cosmic bowling at a Casino. On Sunday we leave for a relaxing time in the Northwoods. I start work on the 7th and am going to Mineral Point for gallery night that night. I expect cake and a crown. This should be an exciting birthday!

I've had a bad streak with birthdays ever since third grade when Mom let me invite over a mixed group of friends (meaning boys and girls). Eventually one boy was chasing a girl with a stick, and I ended up sobbing in the laundry room. Since then I've had botched sleepovers (everyone got lice when I turned ten), parties called on count of hurricane, and last year's awful night in a dead bar a chubby blond woman spent the night talking about how I looked 12 not 21.

There is definitely a gap between 5th grade and senior year in college; At one time I had sworn off birthdays. The last five years (since I've been in Wisconsin) Gram has taken me to Bunky's (except that one time John picked Imperial Garden). I've had a nice family dinner with Mom, John and Gram five years running (last year Jared joined too).

This year is going to be a lot different though. Actually, all family functions are going to be a lot different from now on seeing that my parents flew the coop and ran off into the mountains of Colorado. My birthday should be fine because Gram and I get on great and I always enjoy Sue's company, but I worry about Christmas and Thanksgiving. This may shock some, but my family isn't really related to me. Gram is my mother's boyfriend's mother and Sue is his sister. They've been very welcoming to me since they figured out I am not a problem child. Their openness to my presence has been a great change of pace with family and makes me feel apart of something, but I fear without Mom and John's attendance to large family gatherings I'm going to feel the odd one out.
Update 08/05:

I ordered shoes, birthday complete.
Anyways, this is how my plans ended up.
Shopping went awful. Everything that was hot pink or chartreuse was an XL or 3XL. No boleros in sight.
Dinner with Gram was good. Uncle Bob and Aunt Sue were there. Jared was comfortably charming. I got all sorts of random things in my Gram grab bag. Makes me very happy. I just love socks, scissors and kitchen utensils. (Not sarcasm)
I didn't attend Ladies' Night. I was exhausted and the bar wasn't crowded enough.
Cosmic bowling went okay, but I got the feeling everybody was either tired or grumpy. I did, however bowl a turkey in the last frame of the last game.
Sunday we left very very late. We got to the cabin very very late. We slept late the first day. We were on the water often. I had a great time with Jared. We even went fishing. I killed 3 flies and he caught some fish.
Jared made me a cake. No one got me a crown.

I do want to say that the trip and my birthday left me overall disappointed, so my birthday suffered the curse as a slight sickness and not a catastrophe.

Thursday, July 22, 2010


I've reached another end of day and not too much has happened. Except, once again it's storming. Since it's storming and we are in Wisconsin, there are tornado watches. This is a fact of life in the midwest. And, for me, tornado anything is no big deal. I'm under the belief that when it is time to die it is time to die. I've seen those Final Destination movies. Even though I cover my eyes and cringe when I hear the you-are-about-to-die music, I understand the plot line. You can't run from something as permanent and life changing as death.

This is not a widely held, easily accepted belief. My best friend is on her way to crash on our extra mattress slash cower in our basement right now. I want to say that I can understand the need to hide from the inevitable. But, I really don't. Hiding from tornadoes is like hiding from time, age and taxes. Yes, it's totally possible that clenching my teeth and screaming my head off in our not-so-slowly decaying basement where there isn't a single enclosed space will somehow save my life. But running down stairs at the nearest thunder clap is only going to help prevent type-II diabetes and heart disease.

I'd really like to read a book on statistical analysis of trying to prevent injury through trapping yourself in a room.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Greek Honey Cake

Another day has gone by where I've done very little. I played some Evil Genius and cooked Country Fried Cube Steak for dinner with mashed potatoes and green beans. Afterwords, I baked a cake.

The Original Recipe called for walnuts and orange zest, but having already been to the store twice today I skipped it. I also cut the sauce recipe in half. Overall, the cake was airy and well seasoned. Jared thought it was a bit too sweet, but I'd have to disagree. It'd make a nice warm cake for breakfast and everyone should have cake for breakfast.

Revised Recipe:

Greek Honey Cake
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup butter
3/4 cup white sugar
3 eggs
1/4 cup milk

1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup honey
3/8 cup water
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour a 9 inch square pan. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon. Set aside.

In a large bowl, cream together the butter and 3/4 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Beat in the flour mixture alternately with the milk, mixing just until incorporated. Stir in the walnuts.

Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Allow to cool for 15 minutes, then cut into diamond shapes. Pour honey syrup over the cake.

For the Honey Syrup: In a saucepan, combine honey, 1/2 cup sugar and water. Bring to a simmer and cook 5 minutes. Stir in lemon juice, bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes.

Monday, July 19, 2010

First Posts First

Let's get this out of the way right now: I am exhausted. I started this blog two hours ago and was stumped by the first question. So, first I researched and read the how-to's of what is and how can I create a tag line. Companies have tag lines and slogans and ridiculous advertising budgets to find out the best way to say Just Do It or Like a Rock. I have college debt and an utter lack of experience, marketing team and product. First I considered "Respect yourself enough to live an easy life" which is more of a belief than a tag line. Then I tried "Cool with it" which is more of a catchphrase. In the end I went with something benign and very true. A tag line that embodies what I feel is necessary to being a good human being: "Showing up 365.25 days a year." I'm a firm believer in doing whatever you can to help a person and step 1 is showing up. I told my boyfriend my new tag line to which he replied "Showing up where" and I quipped "Well, I'm here, aren't I?" Okay. Tag line completed, and it only took an hour.

Then, I moved onto the next question which required a brief autobiography. This required much more research. You'd think writing about the subject of you would be an easy task, but having applied and been rejected for several master's of art programs I must say writing an autobiography is daunting. Thank god for the internet. I found a wonderful article titled "16 questions to help you write a douche-free bio" from copylicious. Link to Article I nixed questions about professional experience seeing that I have very little and focused on the quarter of my life I have lived. Pretending you are and have what you do not may be The Secret, but most autobiographies aren't Science Fiction. Autobiography: Check.

Now, onto the first post. I want to tell you that I spent the day fighting evil and conquering wrong do-ers. But this is reality, and I am no superhero. I didn't take my kids to soccer, because I have no kids. I didn't slave 9 to 5, because I have no job. I didn't kiss my husband goodbye for work, walk my dog or mow my lawn. Because I don't have any of those things either. In my real life, I'm a little bit lethargic and broke. Oh, don't you know.

I spent today at home. Which was nice because the last two days I spent in Madison staying with my boyfriend's family. I brought a friend and we went shopping on State St. It was Maxwell Street Days and what a long day! My feet were so sore and my bad ankle was worse. I had a great time. Ciera and I ended the day seeing Despicable Me.

About Me

I was born and raised in the deep south of Destin, Florida. (Florida is actually south of the south, which I will call the deep south.) My parents decided after hurricane Ivan that Florida might not be the best place to own a home if you want to keep your roof more than a year. We made the trip up to Wisconsin in 2005. They couldn't take the long winters and moved to Colorado, but I'm still here, learning to layer and keeping the heat.

My mother would testify that I have been artist my entire life and I was born eating crayons and making masterpieces in finger paint. I'd be more apt to say I've been interested and actively experimenting in art for the past five years. I have been awarded a wonderful bachelor's degree from the University of Wisconsin in Platteville in Fine Arts. I graduated Magna Cum Laude while starting and running a club for people interested in hands-on art.

I've worked in customer service on the front line of retail as well as a call representative. I've held a medley of off the books jobs as a record store clerk, wedding photograph editor, childcare provider and impromptu yes woman. Painting, drawing, talking, networking and typing are my most developed skills but I've dabbled in photo editing, ceramics, computer graphics, and writing.

I am unfailing passionate about positive representation and keeping a optimistic attitude especially in the work environment. I try my best to be understanding towards people's struggles which affect their performance, but at the end of the day everyone is struggling. I feel that all people are sharing the same reality and having different experience. There is no excuse for blatant, unprovoked rudeness.

Over the next four months, my boyfriend and I are working opposite shifts, five days a week to save towards moving to Minneapolis. This journal is being manually put imported from my vox, because they are closing and typepad is nonsense.

Being a G.R.I.T. (Girl Raised In the South) I could not possibly give up Sweet Tea. Not only is it addictive, but it's delicious.

I'm a rationalist. I'm an optimist. I'm your girl next door.
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