Saturday, June 30, 2007

I'm Still Here....

It started out so innocently: I'll just check my email in the morning, and then get on with my day. Soon, it was about an hour on email/ lists/ blogs/ fantasy shopping. Quickly grew into two hours. Then I had to catch up several times a day. I joined the bloggers, joined cooking lists, knitting lists, you name it! Yes, it was fun, but I had to just face the facts: I was spending way too much time on the computer. In fact, I was spending more time reading about knitting than actually knitting. More time reading about cooking than actually cooking. I wasn't really doing anything, but I was learning so much!
As much as I love the www, something had to give. I couldn't go cold turkey, but I had to cut way back, and so I did. I unsubbed to some lists, went no-mail on others, and totally limited my screen time. And that's why I haven't been blogging. My plan is to carve out some time each weekend to blog about the week, just to keep in touch, so here I go. I may have to limit photos and such, because when my time's up, I gotta go and actually do something!
We have been caught up in a whirling dervish of cultural activity!! (Don't you just love that visual of a whirling dervish? What is a dervish, anyway??) At any rate, that's where we've been, in case you were wondering.
We started out by taking the kids to a live performance of "A Prairie Home Companion." I will admit it right now, I was not really very excited about going. Mike loves PHC, and the kids enjoy listening to it, too, but I am sort of on the fence. Sometimes I like it, sometimes I'm just not in the mood. Mike wanted "good" tickets, so I moaned and groaned and paid up and it was so, so worth it!! The show was wonderful and it was a night we will all remember.
Next came "Romeo and Juliet" at the local Shakespeare in the Park performance. The show was good, if a bit melodramatic, but the best part was the kids' Shakespeare dialogue. I could hardly keep up, which is good, because I hope my kids are smarter than I am!
We ventured out to the Impressionist Exhibit at the Nelson-Atkins Art Museum. If you haven't been, and you like Impressionism, GO!! We all loved it.
Mike and I went to see Oklahoma! at the dinner theater. Seriously, one of the best performances I've seen. (expert that I am) (just kidding, of course) (Okay, I DID count my high school's performance in my comparison, but this show was really good!!)
While we're talking cultural events... who went to the Harry Potter book parties last night? We were there. Kait was a death eater, Connor was Dumbledore, and Kyle was Dobby. It wasn't very well organized, the store was SO HOT, and we didn't get our book until 1:20am. Still, I wouldn't have missed it. The kids were so excited. They played the trivia games, entered the costume contest and just enjoyed themselves. I was about to pass out from the heat and the smell of all the people and the crushing mass of bodies, but it wasn't really about me, now was it? For the record, this has always been Mike's job, but he was out of town for this book release. That won't happen again.

Let's see... I did finish my lacy shawl, in the car, on the way to Oklahoma! I love it; it's perfect. I have not yet felted Amanda's Squatty Sidekick. No real reason, except that it's kind of hot to felt. (is that lame?) I finished one of the toe up socks I started using the ex-tennis sock yarn. This is the first time I have made a complete sock toe up. As of right now, I like cuff down better, but I reserve the right to change my mind:-) And, I did a short row heel, but I actually like the heel flap better! I'm getting ready to start sock #2.
I've also just started a scribble shawl, a la "Mason Dixon." I am using a ribbon yarn from Colinette which is so beautiful, and also Rowan kid silk haze. It should go fast on size 17 needles! Pics will follow.
And what have we been eating? Salads. Coleslaw with lemon dressing and raisins. Spinach salad with pecans, red onion, feta and dried cranberries. Green bean salad. Black bean salad with avocado. Green bean and potato salad. Corn salad. Oh, and corn bread. The best corn bread I've ever made. (okay, this is not counting that one time Mike talked me into making corn bread in bacon grease in a cast iron skillet when we first got married. Sound disgusting? Sorry, but it was "slap your grandma" delicious!!)
Here is the corn bread we all adore:
(adapted from "The Bread Bible" by Beth Hesperger)
note: I just make my own "buttermilk" by adding a tsp of white vinegar to a cup of soy milk and then just letting it set for a few minutes.
another note: You can use real butter, or Earth Balance, or even olive oil. They all work fine.
1 C flour
1 C cornmeal
1/4 C sugar
1 Tbs baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs (or egg substitute)
1 C buttermilk
4 Tbs butter, melted
1 C fresh or thawed frozen corn kernels (optional)
Preheat oven to 400 and lightly oil a 9-inch baking dish or pie plate.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder and salt.
In another bowl, whisk together eggs, buttermilk and butter.
Add wet ingredients to dry, adding the corn kernels if desired, and stir until JUST BLENDED.
Spoon into dish; bake 25 minutes, cool 10-15 minutes before cutting.
My time is up. Serve up some cornbread with a can of baked beans and bask in the glory:-) (Or, serve with pressure cooked black-eyed peas. Or Cuban black beans. Or any bean salad.)
(See what I mean? Is there a 12 step program for computer addicts???)


Anonymous said...

I'm glad you're back...I missed reading your blog for a few weeks, but I understand! See you at yoga :-))

Anonymous said...

Hi Cheryl,

I wondered what happened to you, but kinda figured you were busy with real life instead of virtural life. Yes, one can get carried away on the computer. It is very tempting to just go on and on as there is so much stuff to look up, read and learn. Its easy to just sit at the computer in the nice air conditioned room and surf the net and before you know it, hours have passed and nothing that is supposed to get done ever does.

I did miss your blog and got out of the habit of checking it after a while. Glad to see you are blogging again as it is a way for me to feel connected to you even though I am far away.

Keep up the good work. You sure are getting cultured out there in Kansas. Back here in the high desert not much has changed. The cultural activities are sorely lacking as you know.

My last big cultural activity consisted of going to the market and realizing I was one of the few people shopping at that time who had front teeth. I felt pretty dammed cultured just because I have a full set of teeth, and they are pretty straight to boot. I guess culture can be found anywhere?

Cheryl said...

Barbara and Laurie-

Thanks for the comments. It's nice to know that someone actually reads my blog, besides my husband:-) Barbara, you do have beautiful teeth! Laurie, see you at yoga!


Anonymous said...

"slap your gramma" delicious?! That's a new one to me -- I thank you for that ;-). Part of limiting my computer time has been not blog-reading much... but it's nice to check in and see you're still here. I love the H.P. photo; I never realized how much Kyle looks like you. Adorable!