brittany at the home ground gave me a melitta for christmas and yesterday we tried it out, and the coffee was very smooth but also pretty weak. this morning, i put in some extra grounds, and it was perfect. the only down side was that after one cup, i'd have to start over again for more, instead of revisiting the pot. i didn't, though, which might be a good thing because the last few weeks have been really hard on my stomach.
snow. we have much snow. yesterday, i left my house around 1:45 and by 2:15 i was on the freeway and the snow was falling so fast that by the time i arrived at my destination at 2:30, there were a few inches on the ground. my car got stuck on the way home, and grace laughed at me while i whined at her in a terrified voice, "it's not funny!!!! mommy's car is stuck!"
i feel like i've been writing so much poetry lately that when it comes to assembling some sort of prose, some sort of release, i have nothing. i woke up from a dream last night and noted a thought in my phone (dear smartphone, die, i'm over you but am simultaneously grateful for your notepad app in the absence of a pen and paper). i am not always a writer. or, i am always a writer who does not always have something substantial to say. i recently found amy's blog, and am going to take her 21 things and do them here.
1. i collect mugs. most of them are packed away now, but i cannot resist when i see a mug that catches my eye. most recently, i found a red and white chicken mug for $1.00 at michaels. this morning, i'm drinking from my new favorite japanese stoneware called "hearthside." i'm not one for matching dishes. i really love different patterns and prints. i do have a dish set that someone was kind enough to give me and it is much appreciated and i'm sure, when i have my own home with a dining table, i will put it to good use and have dinner parties and meals to share. i love to share meals. and i love my mugs. and i love to share my mugs with company. and, i like to pick out which mug i'm going to use so that they all get equal lovin'.
2. on the topic of meals: i made baked mac n cheese last night, for the first time without referencing a recipe. the cheese kind of...separated? it still tastes great, but i notice this happens when i use yellow cheddar. when i've used smoked gouda, and gruyere as base cheeses (or australian cheddar), it doesn't separate. maybe i didn't heat the milk long enough? maybe i didn't use enough flour and butter? i'm not sure. martha stewart, help me!
3. yesterday, i was reading about all of the hospital jobs expected to open up this year and for a brief moment i thought i was in the wrong field, again. i am so prone to jumping out of this cocoon and leaping towards another bright and shiny thing, only to retreat after i've calmed down...but each time, it changes me. i realize that every single student interested in training for one of those careers is going to have to take comp 1 and 2...but i can't help wondering what it might be like to be an ultrasound tech, or a medical assistant like my mother. i look at the two years of undergrad and two or three of grad school ahead of me, not to mention the tens of thousands of dollars in student loans....and i wonder what i'm doing. when i apply for jobs and am met with "oh, we need open availability," i wonder what i'm doing. i wonder what the next several years will look like. i am encouraged by unconventional living, like i've mentioned before. this panic is usually cured by a day spent in class...and therefore i spend more time on campus than necessary because if i envelope myself in the learning community, i feel better. i also think this is a superficial cure.
4. i have a few ideas for children's books, but am horrible at drawing. grace's dad recently let me borrow his old tablet, but i haven't had a chance to try it out yet. i like to tell myself that i'll do these things after grace goes to bed, but then 11pm hits and she's still awake and i'm halfway gone. we recently saw art & max at the bookstore, which was on amazon's best of children's books list, and i am regretting not purchasing it...though $17.99 was a bit much (not to say the value of the book isn't worth that). i'm also a sucker for stripes, especially in children's lit, and especially if the color red is involved.
5. i really love amazon. i realize this is potentially the archenemy of local bookstores and community...but i love amazon.
6. i also really love looking at anthropologie, especially their lingerie (it all whispers "touch me," i swear). i've never bought anything there, and sometimes i want to drive out to somerset mall just to touch their clothes. i know this is opening a box of debate on business ethics, but i'll be the first to admit that i think it's ignorant to write off sweatshops as awful, horrible institutions...and i'm not justifying bad work conditions, but i think it's important to acknowledge that many people feed their families because of their sweatshop job. this is something that has come up in light of the planned parenthood funding. do i think that this justifies purchasing products made without "fair" wages offered to their employees? no...but i don't think refusing to buy the product is going to make the companies change the working conditions, and eliminating the factories altogether would only leave starving people behind. in terms of CEO's supporting politics that i may not agree with? well, i realize that the CEO doesn't represent the company as a whole, just as that one grumpy cashier doesn't represent the rest of the working population. you know? it's not that black and white. boycotts and protests are not always the best solution, and placing blame here is no more than a diffusion of responsibility.
7. i really love literary theory and the debates we have in class. i also greatly sympathize with my classmate who feels that because he is a white man, our teacher is harder on him than on another classmate who we feel performs at a much lower capacity. white men don't get to claim oppression or difficulty in the least, because they are the entitled whereas we, in whatever form of non-white-man we come in, are theoretically marginalized simply by being not a white man. i find it interesting that i am generally drawn to male musicians and writers over women, and i also disagree that because he is a white man he is more likely to be published/heard/valued. however, i also believe that gender ideology is ever-present and so...maybe i'm wrong. maybe the only way i'll be heard is if i write about leaving my city-life for the country and leaving my husband for a farmer. in theory, i'd be a published female writer....but i'd also be existing within an approved female-writer-box. that said, these books about traveling the world with a blank book after a messy divorce make me want to vomit. i'll buy one when the woman does it with her partner, and it has to be the same partner she was with before her mini-revelation. bonus if her kid comes too. extra bonus if she isn't rich.
8. i'm learning not to feel overwhelmed with guilt for taking an hour to write or read blogs while grace plays. it's not even that she's having to play alone...it's the "we should be outside we should be doing this educational activity we should be LEARNING SOMETHING qualitative," as if playing by herself does nothing. breathe. back to writing, after realizing how ridiculous that thought is.
9. girl scout cookies. enough said.
10. i think that food, and an economy based on use-value but especially on food and simplicity over currency exchange, can save us. i'm also hardly informed on issues like these, so my assumption might be naive and unrealistic...but i'm holding on to my innocent hope like a kid who believes in fairies.
11. my braids are keeping me from cutting my hair.
12. it makes me ridiculously happy when grace lets me braid her hair.
13. someday i will have a dog. a non-slobbery, not smelly dog.
14. i love goodreads. it gives me pleasure to update my page status, and i use it to keep track of the many books i find at the library and bookstore that i want to read at some point before the end of time.
15. i'm intrigued by this radio and will likely buy it. you should come over and listen to it with me.
16. i am so, so tired of dora and diego. this morning, we've been watching detroit public tv. mister rogers, clifford, word world...i feel like the energy in this house is so much better, and grace isn't hypnotized by the tv. instead, she's playing calculator on my phone, or making beds for her babies, or reading books while the tv plays on in the background.
17. sometimes i really wonder if i should just quit my lit program and learn sign language at occ. the knowledge that a) i've already got too many credits to keep getting financial aid, i think, and b) i'd end up with an equal amount of student loan debt as i would with a bachelors in lit, and c) i'd have an associates, meaning...i'd have to finish my bachelors in something, anyway, at some point.
18. my camera was the greatest purchase i've made in a very long time.
19. i still haven't bought new boots. i keep looking at them on amazon or zappos...having ten browser tabs open, and then i close them all and can't decide. i think i'm not an online shoe order-er.
20. i think it is safe to say that i will never buy an e-reader.
21. dottie angel is my fashion and home inspiration, though i have quite a collection of photos and saved links from all over the internet and i have yet to attempt any dottie angel style, i think i mostly just like to look. i dream about a home with pale walls and hardwood floors and barnwood furniture, little tables, beautiful natural lighting, minimal clutter and probably a LOT of shelves for housing books, and some great rugs. i recently wrote a poem about not wanting to buy a house alone, and it literally makes me squeamish to think about decorating by myself. i am sure i wouldn't feel so horrified were i working a more regular or stable job, but until that day comes....i shall dream, and curl up on my mother's couch and avoid the nagging thoughts of "how on earth are you going to make this work, dear woman?"