Thursday, September 23, 2010

One Hundredth Post

     Have you seen http://www.blabberize.com/ ?  I find it absolutely rib-hurting hilarious.  You upload pictures, create a mouth, and make it talk. 
     Here's one of Maggie's belly button talking:  http://blabberize.com/view?id=286821

     I have found a new joy – sharpening knives. Through Julia Child and her French Cooking show I have acquired my own unique 45-second, “Calgon, take me away” time.

     Child begins the episode about cooking with onions by explaining the importance of slicing with sharp knives. (Yes, it is much safer to work with sharp, rather than dull knives). Before making French onion soup, she sliced through onions like they were melted butter. I was jealous. I wanted my chef’s knife to be like hers. I had never sliced, diced, or chopped with such effortless efficiency.
     I watched Julia Child demonstrate the professional knife-sharpening method. In all honesty, I think I watched the knife-sharpening scene about 10l times until I felt comfortable going upstairs and retrieving my knives and the steel. I had never used the steel before – never. I felt a little funny about learning the skill. Growing up, my dad always sharpened – ok, “honed” – the blades with a whetstone. It only seemed natural to me that Dave should be the sharpener of our household blades.
     You know what, though? It’s pretty much my kitchen. If I want super sharp blades, I’m going to learn. So I practiced. I brought the blades up and down. Tested them on the back of my hand. Couldn’t feel much sharpness, yet. Back to the steel. Up and down some more – adjust the angle. Aah, I’ve just trimmed some arm hair! Now we’re getting somewhere!
     I love using the steel on my knives in slow motion. I can feel the pull of the steel as I move over nicks and imperfections. I feel the vibrations as I grind away a rough section of the knife. I make a few more passes on the steel until it’s smooth. I could trim my nails with it, if needed.
     Have you ever had one of those days where you feel you could use something to hone your imperfections? Do you ever feel like your life is dull or flat or full of imperfections? What do you do to straighten yourself out? I’m curious. Tell me. Sometimes as I feel the nick jerk on the steel beneath me, I recall a cruddy part of my day…late getting out the door and sharing my frustration with everyone in the house. Computers at work acting up. Books not showing up in our bank of databases. Children not listening. Nicks in my day…going away. It’s zen – a not so good part of my day stuck in my head and zwap goes the knife and steel – the rough edge is straighter.

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Biking, Potatos, and a Birthday

Fresh cut flowers from the front yard. Maggie helped pick them. I planted Zinnias and Cosmos in the front planter with the Seedum. Potatoes, Potatoes, Potatoes. These practically jumped out of the ground and hit us on the head. I planted Yukon Golds and Purple Viking. I am thinking freshly grated hashbrowns and eggs for breakfast tomorrow??

Where have all the Monarchs gone? Every since we've moved in, I've planted Zinnias and Cosmos...we've had Monarchs and other colorful butterflies; but this year is different. Anyone else notice it? This looks more like a moth...

The prettiest flower of them all is in yellow!

The strawberry cake Owen ordered for his birthday party. It was quite tasty if I say so myself.



video

After readjusting Owen's new bike clear to the bottom, he can finally ride it. Owen turned 5 last week and is greatly enjoying his new bike. (Also, if anyone has any photos of his birthday party, could you e-mail them to me? All that I was able to get a picture of was his cake.)
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Maggie and her little hotrod. She has a bike, also, but I think it's a bit small for her. We raised the seat as high as it would go, and there's still not much room for her legs. It's really hard to bike when you're knees almost hit the steering wheel with every rotation of the wheels!

Well not much else to report on...we'll see how Labor Day goes...maybe I'll upload all the pics from my camera...Enjoy the day off, everyone.