05 December 2009
Ready: to go.
Craving: Chocolate Mousse.
Making: Caramel Apple Pie.
Crazy Family Project: Giant Rose done in Christmas Lights.
Feeling: Slightly Unstable.
Have too much: Hair.
Learning about: Varnish, Sailboat Kitchens, Eskimo Rolls.
25 November 2009
Tense your muscles. Twist your body. Feel the edge of the grubber bite into the dirt. It’s a good feeling, because this is good dirt. Not too many rocks. Rip back the grass, exposing a wide strip of dark brown earth. Reset. Stop when you reach the other edge of the trail. Kick the dirt and the grass and the small rocks off the trail, away from the edge. Examine your work. Kick at any stubborn piece of greenery marring the dark expanse. Take one step to the right. Repeat. Ask your crew members around your for stories, for recipes, for advice on love, for future plans, for favorite baby names. Their voices keep you going. There are times when it is pleasant to be working alone with your thoughts, silent and mechanical, so absorbed in your work and private meditations that time does not pass, or passes quickly. You’re not sure which, but it doesn’t matter either way. Right now is not one of those times. Right now is early afternoon, nearing the break that your crew will not take because they would rather end fifteen minutes early. Right now, you need to talk, to joke and laugh, and take long pauses to chug water, and in a few minutes, take long pauses to hike down the trail to pee. Pry at a big rock in the trail with your grubber. Kick at the big rock until it loosens. Pry at it some more. Sigh and carefully set your grubber aside. Bend down, feel your muscles complain about this new movement. Dig out the rock, trying not to put any new holes in your gloves. Throw the rock down the hill and listen to the satisfying crash, crunch, crash, as it rolls down to the streambed far below. Only two more hours.
21 November 2009
12 November 2009
I'm just getting back from my adventure in Arizona, where I sweated and hiked and ate a lot of dirt. We had a great crew of people, five girls and three boys, all hard workers with a sense of humor and enough creativity to make even the most tedious tasks worth while. Trailcrew...I would do it again, but maybe not under the same circumstances. It felt really great the last two weeks when I realized that I could work nine hours, physically moving and lifting and lopping and boot-o-matic-ing, and have at least a little bit of energy left. I still went to bed at seven when I could, though.
Next adventure is starting to draw close, and I am impatient for it to happen. I'm ready to go now. Well, maybe I need a few more days in Seattle to purchase some schriacha sauce...
22 September 2009
14 September 2009
Alaska Sea Kayaking Rangers
Amazing Grace Tall Ship
America's Test Kitchen
Backroads Trip Leaders
High Mountain Institute
Cascade Land Conservancy
Naturalists at Large
North Cascades Wilderness School
North Cascades Institute
Northwest Service Academy
Parks and Recreation
Port of Seattle
Some of the jobs and internships and companies I've been looking at. The one that I feel most suited for, and most excited for, is Logistics Coordinator with Salish Seas, working with sail boats and kids and getting things ready behind the scenes. I'm trying to rewrite my resume for something outside of the theater world, and it is slow going. It seems a daunting task, pointing out all my good points, asking someone to like me. Hope for the best.
11 September 2009
1. Upside-down wine-plum cake (cross your fingers that it works out, still in the process)
4. Peach baby Dutch Babies, not so pretty, so I ate them
2. Couches that I have to carry up and down stairs
Lots. Of things to mail to lots of people
Also, dinner invites to arrange. Packing to finish for St. Louis. Exciting phone calls to wait for. Despite there being lemon juice and a fruit sticker in my hair, for once it is curling under on both sides instead of flipping out like a crazy-person's hair. So that is good too. There is a good breeze for sailing out on the sound today.
06 September 2009
24 August 2009
is not something I am graceful at. I should make water for tomorrow and prep my gear for easy packing early in the morning. I am not sure why such a sense of despondency is hovering about me, but a good sleep will hopefully send it flying. I IDed a lodgepole pine today
from remembering. Burke would be proud. Out here on the coast Pinus contorta is called shore pine, but whether Montana or Canada, a tree is a tree is a tree. Sometimes things seem to hover at the brink of disaster and Gene just sits there calmly, observing from his corner. He thinks I am hard to read and I often feel the same about him. Ah cabbage, the friendly plant. On our first day, there were some sort of biting gnats and as the days go on I seem to discover more and more damage those little creatures did to my feet and hands. I definitely have not eaten very well today, what should have been a day of feasting. Half a bagel with butter, three gingerbread pancakes, and a peanut butter Cliff bar. Possibly caramels later. Cross your fingers. I asked for criticism today and I got it and it was very fair but also very hard to totally monitor. My shut up reminder has returned to my hand, and I only hope that my role in the group is
not too set in any way.
17 August 2009
25 July 2009
11 July 2009
10 July 2009
09 June 2009
I must down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by,
And the wheel's kick and the wind's song and the white sail's shaking,
And a grey mist on the sea's face, and a grey dawn breaking.
I must down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide
Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying.
I must down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy life,
To the gull's way and the whale's way where the wind's like a whetted knife;
And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow-rover
And quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick's over.
By John Masefield (1878-1967).
26 May 2009
14 May 2009
10 May 2009
08 May 2009
Yesterday was my last day of classes, but it was far too exhausting to enjoy or savor. However, I would like to say that I kicked butt on the second part of the Dendrology test, and I can't wait to go in next week to get my results. If my spelling is as good as I think it is, there was only one tree that I was not absolutely sure of. Stupid Juglandaceae and its bitter butter wal nuts.
I am currently wasting time before portfolio review, all dressed up with no where to go. I wanted to bring in my entire portfolio--all eight binders worth, but it weighs over thirty pounds and I'm in heels and a silk skirt. And rain threatens. I have thirty five cents with which to buy breakfast. I believe that is enough for a nutrigrain bar. Hmm.
03 May 2009
01 May 2009
From my perch in the chemistry building. It was snowing! Definitely not a lounge-on-the-oval day.
The room packing has begun. I need to buy some white thread, and borrow a iron and board. I've finished my little project for Teralyn. All Things Considered is giving me graduation advice. That is my status update.
29 April 2009
22 April 2009
The Wilma is this beautiful old theater, falling apart, but still so interesting with big chandeliers and carvings and an organ and a decorative proscenium. Brandi liked it so much she decided to sing a song completely unplugged and walked out to the apron with the twins to do so. People stayed really quite and it was magical. In general there was great energy and people were there to listen to the music and the concert just clicked for the performers and the audience. At one point she broke us up into three parts and had us learn a three part harmony and I felt like it was summer camp on a Sunday in the lodge. Wonderful.
All set up and ready for the show. We chose to sit at the very front of the balcony, which we some mighty nice seats, and way more comfortable than standing in the crowd clustered at the stage.
A good night. I got to explain was bolognese sauce was, and gorgonzola, and gnocchi, and I had a glass of wine like a grown up with my chicken marsala, and my hair was wavy like it would be if I could tell my hair what I wanted it to do naturally. So despite too busy schedules and not enough time to relax, I would say that this was an excellent birthday present.
21 April 2009
Sunny day. Playing with color accent on the camera.
Being demo girl in Dendrology class. Here we are at Sitka mountain-ash.
Ready for tree class!
This is about half of the trees we are supposed to know by now!
20 April 2009
12 April 2009
This week: study for weekly tree test, theater history group meeting, theater history movie watching, final drafting project finishing up, making a hair appointment, and maybe a tooth appointment, and dredging up a GRE test prep book, oh and driving. I'm determined. This week.
06 April 2009
30 March 2009
It is spring break, though spring has not reach Montana yet. I'm trying to remember how to relax and just let things happen, rather than always lookng forward to getting to the next activity. It is nice not to be wearing black. I made dinner last night. I am reading the Poisenwood Bible, which is the last Barbara Kingsolver book for me, until she writes another. Been putting this one off, just because I know there will be no more new ones for a while. There is a spa here, but I can't quite justify getting an expensive massage. Sigh. Gary Warchola, you better pay up when you get back from Utah. You still owe me for those textbooks.
22 March 2009
08 March 2009
07 March 2009
04 March 2009
03 March 2009
Back. After my props meeting today I spent a very pleasant three hours. So pleasant, in fact, that I forgot to eat dinner, and my substitute Mountain Dew is starting to wear thin. Ah well. The adventure was worth it. Occasional good distractions are so worth it.
02 March 2009
I feel like I am out of favor with my director, like everything is never any good, like all is chaos, like I am going to fail all my classes and especially this test tomorrow. I've got a props meeting tomorrow, and paper tech on thursday. And so much more. I just hate the feeling that there is nothing I can do to make at least one aspect of my life make sense. There's a dinner date that I can't even schedule, no two hour chunk of time to unwind and laugh and feel a pleasant fizz buzz of meeting someone new.
25 February 2009
23 February 2009
19 February 2009
15 February 2009
In case anyone is interested, I was looking in my medicine cabinet this morning and was rather impressed by the number of vitamin and supplements that I am taking at the moment. Witness:
Centrum Multivitamin: maybe 2x a week
Vitamin C: maybe 2x a week
Vitamin B Complex: everyday
Flax Seed Oil: everyday
St Johns Wort: everyday
Arnica and Advil: while my ankle is healing
Green Defense Droplets: whenever I need to swallow a pill, I squirt some into my water
My general goal is not to be sick as I was last semester, and to have energy. B12 is also supposed to help the skin some, which never hurts.
Now wasn't that exciting?
14 February 2009
I've been browsing NPR archives with the search term "summer camp" and have discovered a wealth of stories. I also found this lovely online magazine issue, which makes good reading.
I had delicious chicken peanut curry today, and got a package in the mail from seattle, with the usual chocolate and the distinctly odd fresh lemons.
Put up some new wall decorations. Planning on working on finishing my bivy when I can tear myself away from the radio. Slowly compiling a packet for the tripping program. I scored another $3 down jacket at Goodwill today, and a couple of new free books from the exchange. If only I could bear to part with more books I already own.
09 February 2009
07 February 2009
WFR: May 18-27
NOLS Sail and Sea Kayak: June 10-July 10
Four Winds Camp: July 18-August 29
NYC LDP: September 24-November 5
Do you notice that I have a nice big break in September? That is prime time for going on a hike in Mt. Rainier National park. Some nice alone time, which I won't have much of otherwise. And good weather time. No bugs, no snow. Nods. Exciting adventure time. There's not enough time to do the whole Wonderland Trail, but I could do Sunrise to Paradise, and go through Mowich again. I would get to use my poncho tarp and my bivy. I'm thinking just over a week, with a rest day in the middle. It wouldn't cost too much, just food (which I have some of, can take some from parent's house, and buy the rest) and the $20 wilderness permit. I'll have to decide soon, cause the campsites go by lottery.
I am done with the writing proficiency assesment! I have no food except for oatmeal, and one bag of noodles. I have to reteach myself how to draft today. Blech. I love AutoCAD so much more than hand drafting.
04 February 2009
Rehearsal, a play to read, a paper to write, a test to study for, and much prep for exam to do. So, a busy day, especially as I leave in five minutes and don't return until 10:30ish. At some point this semester I am going to take the GRE (not the GED as I accidentally wrote on my to-do list) and when you take it, you get four schools to send it to for free. And all others require a fee to be paid. Which means that I have to go research schools, even though I'm not quite sure what I want to study or where to go or what to look for. Or when I will go, for that matter. The GRE score are good for five years.
Okay, I"m off.
31 January 2009
Then it was off to the Book Exchange, where I turned in some books, and got a few back in return, and I still have nine dollars in credit for a future book-emergency. In other book related news, I love finding strange old books in our musty, airless library here on campus, and over the break I picked up Echoes of Puget Sound which was incredibly charming and kind of a cross between Anne of Green Gables and The Good Rain. My new goal is to make my parents read this book.
Final stop was a Joanie's House of Crap, as it is lovingly known amongst the costumer's in the drama department, more formally called Joanne's. I bought batting to finish off my quilt and was disappointed to find out that they have no mosquito netting of any kind, so I can't finish off my bivy sack with the rest of my outdoor fabrics. I will have to wait or buy it online.
I'm listening to Wait Wait! now, Carrie Fisher is the guest star.
30 January 2009
27 January 2009
Bought the rest of my books. Rehearsal to-night, as always. Thinking of being lame and eating frozen chicken nuggets for dinner. With some leftover pasta. Oh, and some carrots. So it would be healthy.
24 January 2009
23 January 2009
22 January 2009
21 January 2009
19 January 2009
15 January 2009
14 January 2009
I made this recipe on Saturday and it was delicious, even though I didn't thicken the sauce enough, and it didn't keep well in the fridge like real Chinese takeout is supposed to. This is quite an accomplishment, as I am terrified of popping, sizzling boiling oil.
For the marinade and sauce:
1 ½ lbs. boneless skinless chicken thighs or breasts, cut into 1 ½” pieces
¾ cup low sodium chicken broth
¾ cup fresh squeezed orange juice
1 ½ tsp. grated orange zest
8 thin strips orange peel (optional)
6 tbsp. distilled white vinegar
¼ cup soy sauce
½ cup dark brown sugar
3 medium garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp. fresh grated ginger
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tbsp. plus 2 tsp. cornstarch
2 tbsp. cold water
For coating and frying:
3 large egg whites
1 cup cornstarch
½ tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
3 cups peanut oil (or canola oil)
For the marinade and sauce, place the chicken in a Ziploc bag; set aside. In a large saucepan, combine the chicken broth, orange juice, zest, vinegar, soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic, ginger and cayenne pepper; whisk until the sugar is fully dissolved. Measure out ¾ cup of the mixture and pour it into the bag with the chicken; press out as much air as possible and seal the bag, making sure that all pieces are coated with the marinade. Refrigerate 30-60 minutes, but no longer. Bring the remaining mixture in the saucepan to a boil over high heat. In a small bowl, stir together the cornstarch and cold water; whisk the cornstarch mixture into the sauce. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until thick and translucent, about 1 minute. Off the heat, stir in the orange peel (if using); set the sauce aside.
For the coating, place the egg whites in a pie plate and beat with a fork until frothy. In a second pie plate, whisk together the cornstarch, baking soda and cayenne until combined. Drain the chicken in a colander or large mesh strainer; thoroughly pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Place half of the chicken pieces in the egg whites and turn to coat. Transfer the pieces to cornstarch mixture and coat thoroughly. Place the dredged chicken pieces on another plate or a baking sheet.
To fry the chicken, heat the oil in an 11- to 12-inch dutch oven or straight sided sauté pan with at least 3 qt. capacity over high heat until the oil reaches 350° on an instant read or deep fry thermometer. Carefully place half of the chicken in the oil; fry to golden brown, about 5 minutes, turning each piece with tongs halfway through cooking. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate. Return the oil to 350° and repeat with the remaining chicken.
To serve, reheat the sauce over medium heat until simmering, about 2 minutes. Add the chicken and gently toss until evenly coated and heated through. Serve immediately.
10 January 2009
The feeling that you yourself were an experiment for another person is also a bad feeling. It suggests that you are temporary and unimportant in the long term, as the other person attempts to consciously choose to exhibit different behaviors than they are comfortable with, simply to see what a "normal" college male is like.
The statement that the community in the place where I work and live and play considers me a "lost cause in the social realm," stings quite a bit. The idea that I was befriended specially because I was considered a social outcast is also an idea that is not pleasing. This goes back partially into being an experiment.
I do not enter into relationships lightly, and when I do, I try to leave things like uncertainty and doubt at the door, especially at the beginning. This becomes harder as time goes on and I get the feeling that the other person does not care to make such a commitment. I tend to ask myself some pretty simple questions, but for me, they are very important. Does this person make me happy? Do I like myself and how I act when I am around this person? Can I sit down and really talk with this person without too much awkwardness? Do I think that this person likes me?
I don't necessarily want to know that someone tried to act as respectfully as possible throughout our time together. This suggests that it was a conscious effort that needed to be made. Generally, people respect and like their friends freely and simply, without forethought or discomfort. Friends also generally don't view each other as onerous tasks that they are require to see too, and do not see compliments, small gifts, or other signs of affection as signs of commintment or serious deeper feelings, but rather of friendship.
Okay, I'm done.
07 January 2009
PORT ANGELES, Wash. — A few days into the new year, I stood outside the house and stared into the darkness of a deep winter night at this far western edge of America – defiant on a bone-chilling eve.
It felt lonely and hypnotic here on the Olympic Peninsula, where a jut of land the size of Massachusetts holds an immensity of snow, surrounded on three sides by unknowable depths of gunmetal-gray salt water.
At this northern location, at a latitude equal to Newfoundland, it’s hard not to feel the seasonal blues in all their smothering inevitability. Because there were no big-city lights on the horizon, and clouds veiled a thin moon, the darkness had a particularly strong grip.
I wanted to get inside by the fire, to drink something strong, to eat something sweet, to find a bear’s den of deep sleep. If you live in the north, in places where the sun is an unreliable companion for many months, you can’t escape the urge to hide and hoard in winter.
But this year, I’ve decided to fight lethargy with logic, to welcome the new president, the babies just born, to see something other than closure, dormancy and loss in the annual dark season.
It’s tough, and perhaps absurd, to battle biological imperative. I crave light, pruning high up in the trees around my house to open more patches of sky, keeping the strings of Christmas luminescence hanging into January’s bleakness, checking the daily sunset tables for those few jumps of the clock that will hold back the curtain of night until 4:35 p.m., instead of 4:33.
06 January 2009
Mmm. Hungry. I feel like cooking, something kind of impressive, which I would then like to share with friends. The state of my kitchen is a slight problem. I could also clean up after last night, read some homework, something to keep me busy and not thinking about selling myself to strangers.
04 January 2009
I cannot quite tell how things are going. Mostly good. But then there are weird moments of disconnect, and I being to doubt that things are sincere. I guess this is just paranoid Allie talking. My roommate should come home today, and I will do a quick sweep for last minute messy things, and give him his silly little alcoholic gift, and then I will show him the energy bill. Growl.
Maybe I will go back to bed. Checks to deposit and books to pick up and senior project papers to write and a future to worry about, and right now the only thing that sounds really appealing is curling up in the last spot of residual warmth and day dreaming for a few hours.