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kate elizabeth

just call me Alice

random me November 12, 2013
Read Time2 Minute, 16 Second

I woke up this morning with an overwhelming urge to clean. A deep clean urge, typically reserved for when I break up with a man (rarely) orbecome employment challenged (ahem). Considering that one of the two life events has happened recently, I did a pretty good scrub to the house about 6 weeks ago. However…

My house, filled with two filthy dogs of labradorian lineage, needs some lovin. Recently, my dogs seem to have started tracking in exponentially more dirt than normal. As in, FILTHYAMOUNTS OF DUST. As I did the morning shuffle to the back of the house to let the pups out, I noticed that my house was looking less than. I consumed my daily dose of 24 Hour Energy, and got online. Found a plethora of lists dedicated to fall cleaning, printed one out, and now I’m ready to go.

Truthfully, the timing is perfect. I don’t have a ton going on today- few phone interviews and that’s it. I could pretend that I have a ton of contract work to be completed, but let’s face it, that’s not happening today. I could nap again today, but well, that’s boring. Instead I’m going to feather my nest, clean and get ready for the FIRST FREEZE OF THE YEAR.

By the by, if you are reading this from the DFW area, you must be living under a rock if you don’t know that it’s going to freeze tonight. The newscasters and my boy Pete Delkus have been talking about this for a week. I got an email from a local garden company reminding me what to do with THE FREEZE. I got an email from a plumbing company reminding me to leave water dripping in my pipes. Sigh.

Slight tangent here: I’m originally not from Texas. I grew up in Michigan where it got cold early and stayed that way for a long time. The winter season wasn’t news worthy. People just knew what to do. I’ve been down here for almost 13 years now, and I still snark when I hear the “FIRST FREEZE OF THE YEAR” alerts. Seriously people, it’s all caps worthy.

Back to cleaning. My plan today is to scrub my house, attack the bathrooms, put on a big pot of some kind of soup and make some bread.  I’m trying to take a craptastical (see what I did there) mood and push my way through it.  I’m really hoping that more work comes through very, very soon.  There might be a post tomorrow about what it feels like to be in your late 30’s, underemployed in a market filled with people younger and cheaper than you. Or maybe I won’t.

Either way, today, I’m embracing my inner Alice.

alce-brady-bunch

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A Time Of Turkey

things that will make you less fat November 3, 2013
Read Time2 Minute, 42 Second

My Cousin inspired this post. She declared that much like artists have certain periods- flowers, women, dogs sitting around a poker table, I am currently going through my culinary Turkey Period.

Candidly, I’m doing it because of my economy, but I do love me some Turkey. I really truly believe that Adam Sandler was in my head when he wrote the Turkey song. Google it if you have been living under a rock and you don’t know what I’m talking about.

Here’s the thing. I don’t understand why people stress out so much about making Thanksgiving dinner. Roasting a turkey, in my opinion is easier than making spaghetti sauce.  All you need are a few items, an oven and patience. Heck, my recipe, doesn’t even require basting.

So, my recipe for roast turkey. This is all very, very approximate. There are a ton of resources for the specifics, but I’ll give you the gist here.  I don’t stuff my bird with traditional “stuffing” or “dressing.” By the by, what do you call that stuff? I’ve learned over the years it’s very regional- dressing, stuffing, potatooo, potatoh.

 

Roast Turkey ala Me.

Ingredients:

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  •  Big ass bird- thawed.  If your bird is frozen, read here about the SAFEST way to thaw your bird.
  • Onion- yellow or white. Peeled and quartered
  • 2 or 3 carrots rough chopped
  • 1-2 celery stalks. Rough chopped. Feel free to leave the tops on.
  • 1 small lemon
  • 1 apple chopped. Don’t bother peeling it. You won’t be eating it.
  • Few cloves of garlic
  • Kosher Salt
  • Olive Oil
  • Black Pepper
  • Sprig of fresh rosemary (if you have it)
  • Few pinches of dried thyme (if you have it)

 

Hardware:

 

Roasting Pan w/rack inside

Knife

Oven (Obviously)

 

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400 Degrees

Chop all veggies

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Make sure that the turkey has all of the inside stuff removed and quickly rinsed off. Pat dry with paper towel and set aside.

Take a healthy pinch of kosher salt and toss inside of bird.

Gently shove all of the veggies INSIDE the bird. Pack ’em in.

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Drizzle a small amount of olive oil on the bird- massage it in. Sprinkle with more kosher salt and pepper. Place bird BREAST side down.

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Repeat with the olive oil/salt/pepper treatment on the side of the bird facing up.

Toss in the oven- on the BOTTOM RACK- and let cook for 30 minutes at 400 degrees.

After the first 30, turn down oven to 35o and cook for 2-2.5 hours (depending on the weight of the bird) until the internal temp is at LEAST 160, max 180. Juices should be clear, not red.

The following is the hardest part. Seriously.

Take cooked turkey out of the oven.

Turn your broiler on to 500 F

FLIP YOUR BIRD. Yep, you might need an extra set of hands here, but you want to crisp up the bottom that has been facing downwards the entire time.

Once you flip your bird, put back in the oven for 7-10 minutes. Keep an eye on this, because it will get crispy quickly.

Pull back out.

Turn oven off.

Let rest for at least 20 minutes prior to carving.

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Enjoy.

 

 

 

 

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Dolly Parton Inspired Thanks

random me November 3, 2013
Read Time3 Minute, 53 Second

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xAQ2SiSAt-A

My morning started like a Dolly Parton song.

“Tumbled out of bed and stumbled into the kitchen. Poured myself a cup of ambition.”

My version: Stumbled out of bed and tripped over the dogs. Cracked open the first diet coke while I made the coffee.

Few thoughts of lesser import:

 

1.) Dogs don’t give a shit about Daylight Savings Time. I knew that they wouldn’t care, and they didn’t. At 4:45 local time, Weezie started her morning frantic pacing. She needed to go patrol and she needed breakfast STAT.

2.) My allergies are hellacious. I’m becoming a regular at CVS/Walgreens trying to find some combination of drugs that make me function like a basic human. Tie that together with getting up at the asscrack of dawn, I KNEW that today was going to be awesome. I popped some drivers license generic Sudafed and waited for the little miracles to kick in.

Since I was up before God made his appearance, I decided to be somewhat productive. I found a recipe last night for a bread that is almost brioche in nature and appeared to be somewhat tasty. I started my bread before the sun even came up, and if my bread sense is working, I think it’s going to be yummy. I loaded up my coffee pot with Dunkin Donuts finest ground beans, and started my day.

I think it’s also important to mention that without my glasses, I’m blind. Not just “life is kinda fuzzy in a good way” blind, but really incapable of seeing much. When I woke up this morning to let the Hounds of Hell outside, I forgot to put my glasses on. The morning was really quite lovely in a mild haze. Lovely until I stepped into the bathroom to brush my teeth.

I looked in the mirror and screamed. I HAVE A HUGE BALD SPOT. I mean, HUGE. At my hairline, it appeared that all of my hair had fallen away overnight.  I started panicking and immediately thinking about my collection of hats, bandanas and the wigs that I would need to cover said HUGE ASS BALD SPOT.

At this very same moment, I realized, I should probably go find my glasses.

When armed with my glasses, I realized, no, my hair didn’t fall out, but I really, really need to get my roots done. What appeared to be a big ole bald spot without glasses, was in reality, a HUGE patch of white, (or as my friend Julie says, sparkly) hair. When compared to the rest of my hair (which is currently a lovely shade of brownish red, it looked GONE.

Dear baby Jesus, my hair is really gray.

Crisis averted, I head back into the kitchen to kick off the bread. I gaze into the living room to see the dogs, the same dogs that less than 30 minutes ago were bouncing off the walls, passed out cold and snoring.

Thanks friends.

Back to the kitchen, diet coke in one hand, sudafed in my body, and waiting patiently for the coffee to brew. I’ve got the milk & butter simmering on the stove to be delicately placed in the bowl of my stand mixer to complete the brioche.

I realized at that moment, the moment my sudafed kicked in, that it’s going to be a long long day.

A few days ago, I made a bold statement that I was going to find something daily to give thanks for. Ya, I already kinda biffed that up, but here is my prior two days catch-up.

 

1.) I’m thankful for drivers licensed strength decongestants.

2.) I’m thankful that my amazing hair guru Lacie will be attending to the nightmare grey(gray?) situation on my head.

3.) I’m thankful that last weeks power surge didn’t kill my KitchenAid. I really think I would have needed to be tranquilized if that happened.

4.) I’m thankful that it’s finally not hot. I’m really thankful that I have a backyard in which I can sit in the mornings, wearing leopard print pj bottoms, a Pure Michigan sweatshirt and purple Uggs, and not have anyone judge my less than stellar wardrobe choices.

5.) I’m very thankful for caffiene.

 

ps- if you expect to see warm fuzzy thoughts of thanks coming from me, you have really come to the wrong place. Last November, I thanked Cows for delicious beef and darling boots, grapes that give me wine and assholes that make me look smart.

Sweet I am not.

So, there you have it. Morning rambles of the best kind.

 

 

 

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Blessings and Thanks

craft me November 1, 2013
Read Time49 Second

Happy November. It certainly feels more fall-ish this morning- only 48 degrees. This makes me happy AND thankful that my darn A/C doesn’t have to be on.

I’ve got the folks in Central Texas on my mind today- the floods yesterday were crazy. A friend of mine posted that many won’t have basic services (electricity, gas, water) for a few weeks. Thats INSANE. I’m thankful that casualty number appears to be low.

I found a project on Pinterest (shocking) that I think I’m going to undertake this month. It basically has you hanging a small bit of paper with a daily blessing written down and attached to the tree. Since I lost my mind in September, I launched a Harvest tree (picture below), so I think I’m going to attach a daily thought/thankful and see if it helps me “set myself .

So, there you go. My November plan. To be thankful. To be present and to spend less time online.

treeoblessings

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few thoughts post all-hallows eve

random me October 31, 2013
Read Time51 Second

Few Thoughts at the end of my second favorite holiday:
1.) I’m seriously annoyed to see three Christmas commercials tonight on tv.I’m so not ready for Christmas.
2.) My power locks and power windows stopped working a few hours ago. Any ideas? Please tell me that it’s a fuse.
3.) I’ve not gotten an email in 8 hours. I can’t decide if that’s normal, or I should be concerned. I’m taking it as a gift tonight and will deal with it manana.
4.) Wearing a tutu is fun. If you need a wrap up- I really enjoy wearing sparkles and now tutus. I am SUCH a girl.

I’d like to think that I could write an elaborate post about Halloween, but honestly, it was fun. I love seeing kids come up and get candy. I got a kick out of blasting Pandora Halloween Party. I enjoyed drinking my not-coffee out of my Wicked Witch coffee cup.

I really  enjoyed wearing a sparkly tutu.

 

 

 

 

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