Tuesday, December 10, 2013

So many things to tell you about

Firstly, I want to tell you about a few things around the webs. Like this post by Patrick Rothfuss: For the Love of Books. In addition to the amazing work he does with his Worldbuilders charity, this year he is also raising money for First Book, a charity that gives books to kids who need them. Seriously now, if you are reading this blog I'm pretty sure you have grown up loving books. Grown up always having books. Grown up with books as your closest friends because sometimes people just don't cut it. Can you imagine not having that? Not having that phenomenal, vital escape we all take for granted? I bought the Fantasy Authors calendar. It's $20. That money goes to Worldbuilders. Then PR is donating five dollars of his own money to First Book. Then, Random House Children's Books is tripling that donation to First Book. Click the links. Give some books. Give some goats. This is really an amazing thing PR is doing.

If you hang out here at all you know I love cooking, and I've been increasingly swept into vegan recipes. I don't plan to go fully vegan anytime soon, mainly because I am way to lazy to put that much effort into anything everyday. (I can't get myself to do anything everyday. Including things that are required for polite society. Like... shower. Yeah. Sometimes, I'd just rather rearrange my bookshelves, ya know?) But meat is just... blah these days. And I have various vegan/vegetarian blogs infecting my brain these days with nefarious recipes. Anyway, I've found two great cookbooks at my local library (love. it.): one I am definitely buying, and the other will probably follow quickly.

Vegan Eats World is the one I really love. I have a weakness for international recipes. I love trying things that have different flavors, and hey, I've been eating "American" food my entire life. I want to try new things! It's a really gorgeous book, and there is a recipe on every page I want to try. (Com'on, it has an entire chapter for dumplings!) I've always wanted to work my way through an entire cookbook, a la Julie and Julia, and I could see that happening with this book. Happy Herbivore is also a great book, and it does have recipes for a few things that aren't in VEW, but it's not quite what I'm looking for. (HH is also low-fat, which seems to take a lot of the tasty out of cooking. It's a lot more RAW. Literally.) I want to check out the regular HH cookbook to see if it's more what I want.

I went to the library looking for The Secret History, and when they didn't have it went a little hog-wild making up for it. I came home with The Chaos of Stars, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, Bellman & Black, and Bleeding Edge. I've been reading all of them, spending a few chapters with one before moving onto another.

It's always so hard to write on days off! I wish that weren't the case. I am finishing yet another mini-vacation, and while most of this one was devoted to finishing the breakfast nook in time for the new fridge, I really didn't get much writing done. I write best when a day follows my routine, even if that routine makes me dead tired. I only have so much time after work so it's easier to devote it to writing and not worry about getting anything else done. My days off have been filled with laundry, dishes, house stuff, etc. And I write best at night, when my subconscious knows it's too late to start another project. Only then is my mind quiet enough to focus on the story.

This writing month started halfway through NaNo, and I decided to keep my goal at 30 days. It's almost done, and I'm nowhere near my 30k goal. (And even further from the 50k NaNo goal.) But I've written 16k so far, and that is still good! I have this anxious compulsion to keep writing moremoremore, so I'm telling myself that 16k is still worth some celebrating. (P keeps telling me to stop treating it like a job, because then it won't be fun anymore. I keep telling him "but I want to treat it like a job!!!" usually in a high-pitched whiny voice.)

And now, the breakfast nook!!!

We ripped down the walls and hung new sheetrock. This is after spackling and sanding, which is one of the worst jobs known to man, you get so dirty and get all kinds of shit up your nose, and then after you do it once you have to do it all over again! In the picture below I'd already started priming. (I also had a bit of an accident with the primer.... it involved puddles... let's just say I'm really happy I was so neurotic about covering the new floor.)

The new floor and paint! I love the color. It's this really light sandy tan color. We have so many dark rooms in our house, it's nice to have something light. Look how pretty the floor is! And it's continuous from the dining room through the kitchen and into the nook, which means we can have Pledge parties and get a running start from the living room and sock-slide for a full 20 feet!!! The iron is on the windowsill because I'm pulling up old laminate (gross and annoying) so I can give the bay window a new coat of paint.

And the star.... the new fridge! So many shelves! And food in the safe zone! It's revolutionary. It's not going to stay in this spot, it'll be covering that window to the right, but it's the only way to get it to fit properly. We still need to run the new wire and the piping for the water thingamajig. It's so beautiful! It also talks to you. When the machines take over, this fridge is going to be leading the charge, I'm sure. (And if you think it's cheesy to be excited for a new fridge, YOU HAVE NO IDEA. I never thought Home Depot could be so much fun until I had my own place.) The Steampunk Kitchen grows!

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