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Moved

April 11, 2011

Hey everyone…

anyone…

I haven’t posted here in about a bajillion years (a few months, give or take). This is not because I gave up on my resolution to blog more, but because I moved (with my two roommates) to Cardigans & Cameras. We are our 100th day into Project 365 and we post daily.

Woohoo!

So yeah…I’ll be over there.

🙂

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Falling For Fall

November 16, 2010

Fall has hit campus hard and it is finally, finally getting cool outside. So, of course, Fall means two things: first, beautiful yellows, reds, and oranges clinging to the trees and littering the ground. Second, coffee. Fall means hot coffee in cold hands, and it always will.

So promising!

Being a (questionably) sane, rational human being, it was imperative to obtain hot coffee as soon as possible. Unfortunately, that opportunity did not come until 2:30. I work in the writing center on Tuesdays from 2:00 until 4:00, but fortunately (for me, at least), my student did not show up. I took this golden moment of peace to run to get a Venti Peppermint Mocha.

Ewwww...

For those of you who have not had the chance to drink this concoction, let me break it down for you. The first ten sips are like a ray of fall sunshine culminating in what is possibly the best taste ever invented. The next ten sips are slightly disappointing. After the epiphany that was the first moments of cradling this ambrosia in your hands, you begin to question your purchase. Is it too sweet? Too minty? Too thick? Each subsequent sip further confirms this unfortunate prognosis. The next ten sips are pure hell. You have finally come to the conclusion that this was possibly the worst idea you ever had, and you honestly cannot believe you paid five bucks to ultimately have your foot fall off. Finally, you are nearing a sense of determination and acceptance, much like the five stages of death. The sips leading to the soon-to-be empty cup are nothing but steely resolve. Each sip is one step closer to the end of this hideous drink. Unfortunately, this attempt to justify your purchase will basically end in a diabetic coma. The moral of this story is, while it may look good on the menu and sound good in theory, AVOID!

Despite my failure to appreciate the second necessary component of Fall, the colors were still beautiful. I went on a mini-photo safari (and, I’m sure, looked like a crazy person in the process) to snap a few photos of campus. Enjoy.

Sundays Are Meant For Laziness

November 15, 2010

Sunday was a flurry of cleaning and dog sitting only punctuated by a (too) short trip out for brunch at The Veranda, photography on campus, and yogurt at Local Culture. And grading. Lots and lots of grading. So here are a few photos.

Ummm...yeah.

One Non-Event After Another

November 13, 2010

Last night, like most nights, was an odd amalgamation of running around and doing nothing. I had made plans tonight with the roommates; most of these plans revolved around dinner and a movie, which quickly devolved into, “I’m not hungry, let’s watch Netflix.” I think this is why I rarely get work done when I go home.

As it were, last night ended up watching another round of Alfred Hitchcock Presents while I aimlessly sketched and downloaded books to my iPad.

Yes. That is a man shooting up using his tie as a tourniquet. I’m classy like that.

I feel like last night exemplifies my weekends: Netflix, doodling, avoiding work. I know I need to work this weekend, both grading and writing, but I won’t put too much faith in my commitment to, well, anything. Aside from finishing grading my students’ essays, I hope to have revisions for Craft of Poetry done by Sunday night.I need to have revisions done. There is so much to do before the end of the semester and so little time (which is both terrifying and relieving) that I need to be keeping up-to-date.

A portion of my revision materials…eh…

So, of course, I’m writing a blog post.

And shopping on Etsy.

And making Mixtapes on 8tracks, which didn’t work. I did, however, keep listening to new music. One as a legit song that is new.

Acrylics: Nightwatch

And one that feels a little like a cop out, but is admittedly really good.

Kid Cudi: Mr Rager

Yeah.

As far as today goes, my books are still sitting on my coffee table. My sketchbook sits beside them. I’m on my laptop doing everything but working. Bones is on. While I know I need to get things done, it’s Saturday.

And on Saturdays, drinking starts early and work is always, always avoided.

Coming Soon

November 6, 2010

I think I lied the last time I posted. And by that, I mean that I said I’d post again. But it’s only be…two months, so I’m doing better than last time.

Why does this feel familiar?

As it is, a lot has happened since the last time I was here. I started Grad school, taught Freshman, worked in a University Writing Center, belatedly finished papers, made lists, made lunch, bought clothes, bought frozen yogurt, and learned that although my body needs nine hours of sleep, four will suffice. I have also begun work on my poetry thesis (sort of) and begun freaking out about the MA exam I have to take in 2012 (a lot).

But in between all of this, I went to New Orleans, went to Oxford, went to Jackson, went to concerts, tried new restaurants, met new people, and written new stuff. And it is my goal to have at least some of that posted by tomorrow.

But now, I have to grade papers.

Until then, please be distracted by the fruit of my birthday present: a Canon Rebel T1i with a 60mm macro lens. I suck, but I’m learning.

See you tomorrow.

I hope…

Mushroom and Feta Tart

September 15, 2010

As it was my night to cook last night, I decided to try out a new recipe. Usually, those words strike fear (or, at the very least, apprehension) in the hearts of my roommates. However, based on the non-healthy status of the meal and the inclusion of not one but two different types of cheese, they seemed open to trying something new.

I found this recipe, adapted from Kitchen Wench, on Tastespotting and was inspired by the gorgeous picture. While I may not have the skills (or equipment) to take such stunning photographs, I did my best to make a damn good tart.

1 small container of button mushrooms
1 1/3 cup of Ricotta Cheese
2 small containers of feta cheese (I used a garlic and herb variation)
2 eggs
zest and juice of one large lemon
1 large onion
3-4 cloves minced garlic
2 sheets of phyllo dough
salt and pepper to taste

Before going into the oven...

  1. Preheat over to 425 degrees.
  2. Mix both cheeses, the eggs, and salt and pepper together in a large bowl.
  3. Dice the onion and toss in a skillet with heated olive oil. Add garlic. Cook until translucent.
  4. Add onions and garlic to cheese mixture and stir. Add lemon. I forgot the lemon when I cooked this, but I would recommend it for future recipes.
  5. Spread the mixture onto the thawed dough, leaving 3-4 centimeters around the boarder
  6. Cover with sliced mushrooms. I’ve found the more, the better. Particularly when the dough spreads during cooking.
  7. Fold the edges and brush with olive oil.
  8. Cook for 40-45 minutes.
  9. Cool and enjoy!

The original recipe has great pictures to follow along with, as well as a great appetizer idea that I will totally be making in the near future.

While waiting for the tart to cook, I had a wonderful spinach salad with feta, cranberries, slivered almonds, and raspberry vinaigrette.

We watched Bones while eating (and taking phone calls from my mother) and ended the meal with a ramekin of chocolate frozen yoghurt and fresh sliced strawberries.

See? Sometimes trying new things can be good. And delicious.

Paging 401

September 2, 2010

I would try to excuse my absence, but like I tell my students, I don’t care what it is as long as you have a note. And I don’t have one. Maybe I could call my mom, I guess, but I don’t think that works in college…

So, suffice it to say, my bad. I’ve been awful and more than that, I have been shamed by not just one but BOTH of my roommates for my long absence.

And I swear, I can explain.

We last left off with young Lisa approaching the dewy morning of her graduate year. Doe-eyed and fresh-faced, Lisa was soon struck down by the open-palmed slap of reality that demanded she work, like, a real job! That, in conjunction with classes, has left poor Lisa with little time to frolic in flower-strewn field under the summer sun or, you know, sleep.

Alright, enough of the third-person. It’s creeping me out.

All of the above is to say that I just started my first year as a graduate student working on getting an MA in English with an emphasis in Creative Writing (particularly poetry). And yes, I know that I have chosen what has to be the most useless career imaginable and to that I can only that, but I like it. I plan on spending two years here, taking a year off to work on my portfolio (and, after the MA exam, to recover psychologically without bursting into sloppy, noisy tears at a moment’s notice), and then applying to a large number of schools with a degree (MFA or PhD) in Creative Writing. After that, I hope that Wendy’s is hiring.

School, for me, started on the 9th of August with a barrage of TA workshops. That’s right: someone hired me to teach. I teach one class of Basic English (or Basic Comp), work in the writing center, and take a full course-load of classes. And this is why I haven’t been posting. But despite the long hours, there are many, many perks to the being a TA/Grad student.

An office.

An office.

Last names blurred to protect the guilty.

An office!

On the fourth floor of our (haunted) English Department building, there is a periodically air-conditioned suite with my name on it. Literally. On both doors.

See?

Oooohhhh...ambiance.

I brought in a few of my own things to decorate my desk, including several of the wonderful prints I got from Etsy earlier this summer. The lamp is from my bedroom at home and, for now, is temporary. This is not to say that I don’t love it (I do!) but that there is now a giant empty spot on my nightstand at home where this lamp used to be. I have been having trouble finding a modern lamp that is affordable (though this is not to say that I haven’t found any cute lamps. Hello, Pottery Barn!). So, until this, this is my work space.

Damn thing has been padlocked!

There is a ladder that leads up to the roof that has been padlocked. Sad!

Wise words from the seller: "my cats had some good loving on this couch..."

And a lounge with a questionable sofa.

After I got settled into my office, I ventured out into the overly bright world outside Lee Hall.

Awkward picture!

Thank you, Ray Bans.

Before

For the longest time, there was a building on campus that had to be one of the most hideous buildings I had ever seen. Seven floors of hot mess, Suttle Hall was a dorm that, for the last year at least, has housed more rats than students. They finally decided to tear it down and we all watched in hushed, reverent silence as they began demolition. When the first ball hit, the only thing that exploded was a cloud of dust. Anti-climatic to say the least.

And After.

But I still took pictures each day to show the progression of the soon to be, Oh God I hope, parking garage. Because like any college campus, parking is a freaking nightmare.

Campus, despite a few of the more questionable buildings (I’m looking at you, Allen) is just as pretty as I remember. I’ve heard rumor that State Fountain Bakery has half-priced muffins with coffee in the mornings, so I will have to stop by before I head off to teach my class. Maybe I’ll have time tomorrow.

Here’s to hoping.

As for tonight, I’ve got work to do. Exploring campus shall be continued another day.

Ciao.