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Drinking from the Fire Hose
and trying not to drown

Mrs_Sweetpeach
Date: 2009-01-06 11:24
Subject: 2009, so far
Security: Public
Location:Work
Music:Afro Celt Sound System: Release
Tags:crafts, crochet, knitting, rl, scrapbooking
We were supposed to travel to Indiana to see my brother-in-law and assorted other family members on December 31st, however the trip was postponed due to the terminal illness of my brother-in-law's mother-in-law. She, I'm sorry to say, passed away on January 1st. Rather than have an open funeral, the family will host a celebration of her life sometime later this year.

Not traveling to Indiana meant we were able to attend a New Year's Eve party hosted by two of our friends in Troy. We rarely get to see them, so the party made the perfect excuse. It also lead to my first RL exposure to Wii Fit. Not that I played, mind you. But it was interesting to watch as a handful of kids and adults played an assortment of games.

New Year's Day I spent watching tv, knitting, and struggling to fully wake up. When I finally felt awake enough, I ran billing. Happily, I can do that part of my job from home. It went reasonably well and I returned to my knitting and crime show addiction afterwards. I also finished knitting my first scarf of 2009.

Friday was another laid back sort of day. More daytime tv, starting with six hours of tv court shows (Judge Judy, Judge Joe Brown, Judge Alex, etc., etc.) -- so many that I started to grow weary of watching contentious people argue. In the evening we went grocery shopping, then it was home to knit a fish and felt some wool. I stuffed a fish with catmint for ladyinfidel's cat and went to bed.

Saturday was SEMGS -- and Pot Pie Lab was *AWESOME*. dizzi_d and texaspenguin made pastry dough and lined a whole bunch of small aluminum pie pans (the foil, disposable/recyclable kind) with the dough and then had selections of meats and veggies so that folks could assemble their own. My favorite was the chicken curry, although I still think I would have liked it even better if the curry had been a hotter. The beef stew in a pot pie was also very good. There was a ham and potatoes and dried cherry pie that surprised me with its yumminess. bwittig made a cinnamon and apple turnover-like thing with biscuit dough and that was also among my favorites. As for (real) pies -- oh my. texaspenguin made a buttermilk cream pie (this was my first exposure to buttermilk pie and *yum*) and dizzi_d made one with Egg Nog (and, omg, that was like the best eggnog custard in pie form *ever*).

All in all, it was an awesome SEMGS lab. Even jebra's green bean casserole pot pie turned out (although the puff pastry got a bit mushy after it cooled). Nevertheless, it still made excellent left-overs.

Also in attendance at SEMGS were two dog! dizzi_d and backrubbear have Noodle, their very quick and hyper Husky, and texaspenguin has Kodi, a black lab/Chow mix. I was a very happy camper being around two nice-sized dogs for the day.

Sunday we went over to a non-LJ couple's house for dinner. On the way we stopped at Trader Joe's to pick up salad ingredients. While there, I spotted a gingerbread house kit on sale for just $3.99. I've never made one before and thought that making one with me would be something our friend's son Ian might enjoy. As it turned out, his parents had bought one of those cookie Christmas tree gingerbread kits for him. So we whipped up three batches of frosting (my kit used confectioner's sugar mixed with an egg white and a few drops of lemon juice; Ian's kit had two frosting mixes, one white and one green). We somehow got the frosting into pastry bags (I sucked at this part and mine squirted frosting from both ends. Perhaps needless to say, I've never handled a pastry bag before and found it to be quite a challenge. Nevertheless, with Ian's help I got my house assembled and decorated. I'd show you a photo, only I haven't done anything with Sunday's photos yet.

Oh, and that reminds me! Before dinner, jebra and I went to the Henry Ford Museum to see Out of This World: Extraordinary Costumes from Film and Television. The exhibit was interesting and I particularly enjoyed the information on costume design and getting to see the Ghost Busters' former ambulance. (Which probably had as much to do with that catchy Ghost Busters' Theme music as it did the vehicle itself.)

Monday was a return to work and then a repair job. A week or so ago, I washed my summer purse (which I knit last summer and managed to get dirty by tossing into my backpack). When it came out of the dryer, I noticed the cotton yarn had frayed and was on the verge of breaking. I considered various methods of repair, but I believe I'm out of that particular variegated yarn and I didn't want to mess around with weaving yarn through the knit fabric anyway. So I thought about crocheting something from my amazing stash crochet thread. I thought about trees and flowers, eventually deciding it'd be fun to crochet a sun and then use patch to mend the bag.


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User: wadjet_theperv
Date: 2009-01-06 18:20 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Goodness, you've been busy!

I'm so sorry about your brother in law's mother in law. Having a celebration later in the year sounds like a wonderful idea. The hurt is so raw soon after the passing, sometimes it's hard to remember the good times you had with them.

Wii Fit is amazing. My kids are hardly off it and I've had fun with it, too. I'm hoping to get on the yoga part at some stage.

Those pot pies sounded yummy, and decorating the gingerbread house sounds like a hoot!

Thanks for sharing :o)
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User: wadjet_theperv
Date: 2009-01-06 18:21 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Now *that* was inspired!
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betagoddess: HeartWatercolourPinkYellow
User: betagoddess
Date: 2009-01-07 03:06 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:HeartWatercolourPinkYellow

Sorry about your brother-in-law's mother-in-law. It's a very sad time of year for a death in the family.

Your pot pie feast sounds wonderful. Do you by any chance have recipes for the buttermilk and the egg nog pies? They sound very tasty indeed.

When our kids were home, I made many a gingerbread house, tree and once a church and a nativity scene out of gingerbread. I'm going to make one again once Benjamin is old enough to appreciate - and eat one. =>}

I love the purse with the lovely sun patch. =>}

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Mrs_Sweetpeach
User: mrs_sweetpeach
Date: 2009-01-07 04:27 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
It sure is. I feel really bad for my s-i-l -- it'll be a long time before New Year's Day starts being fun again.

I don't have recipes yet, but there's a good chance I can get them. Dizzi-d and Texaspenguin are generous folk.

The gingerbread things were fun but boy oh boy do I ever suck at using a pastry bag. It'd take a lot of practice to improve and I'm too cheap to buy more kits. Still no photo of the house, although I did get as far as sorting through them on my other computer tonight.
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betagoddess: SunOverIce
User: betagoddess
Date: 2009-01-07 04:39 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:SunOverIce

Yes, it's hard when loved ones die during the holidays. Both my Mum and my Dad did and in the past four weeks, three good friends have died. Still, all of them loved Christmas, and though it has it's bittersweet moments for me now, I know they'd want me to enjoy the season as much as I can.

I used to do a lot of cake decorating, but I never used pastry bags. I have icing "syringes" and I really prefer them by a mile.

If I ever come across my old photos of various gingerbread creations, I'll scan them and post them. =>}

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Mrs_Sweetpeach
User: mrs_sweetpeach
Date: 2009-01-07 15:04 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I would *love* to see your gingerbread creations! Did you bake the gingerbread yourself in addition to decorating it? I bought a kit that contained the ready-to-frost components, but having made gingerbread cookies before, I think I could have come up with my own house nearly as easily. Also cheating were the little people and dog embellishments -- they were pre-made and the only creative part was deciding where to put them.
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betagoddess: ChristmasBallBluePaleBlueRed
User: betagoddess
Date: 2009-01-07 20:52 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:ChristmasBallBluePaleBlueRed

If I ever come across the pile with those photos in it, I'll definitely scan and post them. *g*

I found the recipe in Parents' Magazine in 1981 and it always works beautifully. The icing is just perfect. I've never had a piece fall off with it yet!

For decoration, I always used a bunch of different candies. I even made pine trees by icing ice cream cones, then decorated them. Everything but the board and foil it was standing on was edible. We'd start eating every year after New Year's Day. =>}

Here is the recipe if you'd like it for another year. =>}

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Mrs_Sweetpeach
User: mrs_sweetpeach
Date: 2009-01-08 00:47 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I do, and thank you! I've already saved a copy to my laptop.
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betagoddess: ChristmasOurLights
User: betagoddess
Date: 2009-01-08 01:19 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:ChristmasOurLights

You're very welcome. =>}

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