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Apples

A few weeks ago, we went apple picking and consequently, we ended up with a ton of apples. So I was trying to figure out something to do with them, and found a cool website that had apple recipes. I didn’t have raisins so I just skipped that part, but the apples turned out great. I took some before and after pictures of my experiment and I might make it again.

I would have posted the recipe (and pictures) sooner, but I was waiting for my new macbook to come in (and steal the pictures from my husband’s iphone). Also, I think the leaves have peaked so I’ll be uploading some fall pictures soon. 🙂

Hopechest tips

It’s sort of a cultural thing with homeschool girls to start preparing for marriage by building a hopechest. As old fashioned as it sounds it’s actually incredibly useful to have after you’re married. Quite a few friends of mine have been working on theirs for years, I didn’t start mine until I was in a serious relationship –  I didn’t see the use for it until that point. There are advantages to both waiting and starting one before you have a boyfriend. The advantage of starting one early is you’ll have more time to accumulate things you might need or would like to have around that aren’t necessarily practical (or you could save up for small appliances). However, what I liked about waiting was that I could talk with my boyfriend about it (as far as colors and decorations etc go) and then what was in my hopechest was a mix of styles and things that we both appreciated. For example, we wanted to decorate our kitchen with a coffee theme and have red be a central color – so I’d get little coffee towels and things when they were on sale and if he found something with that scheme he could contribute as well ( :D). This made putting together my hopechest more enjoyable for me personally, but I’m just weird like that.
Anyway, I know there are alot of girls out there working on hopechests, so I thought I’d throw out some tips from some of the things I’ve learned:
1.  You will be way ahead if you have a complete kitchen already put away in your hopechest (including small appliances). Kitchen items, even just baking sheets can be really pricey, and it’s nice if you don’t have to deal with stocking a kitchen while you’re moving into your place. Also, having multiple  mixing bowls is a great idea.
—- As a side note, finding a good set of dishtowels (for drying) will save you a headache (and from picking fuzz off your dishes) if you have a place without a dishwasher.
2. Having a nice set of blankets/sheets/linens is also a great thing to have put away (and also pricey otherwise). This is something really fun to pick out together, but also fun to pick out yourself.
3. Irons and Ironing boards are good ideas. I don’t iron much, but living in an apartment without an iron/ironing board makes you appreciate them…and saves money at the coin-op dryer. Clothes will get wrinkled, so I’m throwing irons in here as something I totally didn’t even think about.
4. If you like sewing or plan on doing some sewing, picking up a nice sewing machine when it’s on sale will save you a good bit of money, and you’ll also be able to start practicing. I bought mine  for $50 on Black Friday a year or two ago, and it’s been fantastic.  It’s also faster than hand stitching.
5. Decorations – If you already know what you/& your boyfriend want to do decorating wise keep an eye out for decorations or put some on your wishlist. I wanted to do a retro style dining area, so my grandparents gave me some retro coke items for christmas. Garage sales are good places to pick up random decorative items as well, and sometimes you can find some really great stuff on sale if  you look for it.
6. Keep in mind you can put whatever you don’t have on a registry, but you might not get everything you put on there. Back up plans are good, as well as already having  the essentials.

Chill

I woke up this morning with plans to go to the bank and send out my cable bill…..and then  I realized that it’s Columbus day.  I don’t remember ever taking off Columbus day when I was in school, so it’s always come as a surprise – usually when we discovered there wasn’t any mail and spent about 5 minutes realizing, oh, it’s a holiday. Usually it’s  fine, but tomorrow it’s supposed to snow, which makes going out very inconvenient as I haven’t driven in the snow before.  If I do end up going out, it will definitely be an adventure.
It’s supposed to snow tomorrow. I grew up in the south, October is 80’s weather for me. So this is sort of a weird concept for me. Snow in October.
Where’s global warming when you need it? Chilling out?

It Happens To Everyone

So yesterday was another first. On Monday the battery light on the car went on, so we called to set up an appointment at the mechanic’s on Tuesday. The earliest we could schedule was today, Thursday – our mechanic is about an hour and a half north of us, in the town my in-laws live in. So, yesterday, at about 3:30 we started getting stuff in the car (we were going to stay over and work on a project with Hannah). Since it was the middle of the afternoon, I was going to drive so Alex could finish working. It started raining right after everything was in the car, so naturally, I turned on the lights and the windshield wipers.
100 yards from my apartment…the raido light started flickering.
A block away, the windshield wipers were going incredibly slowly.
Traffic stopped, and I had to push really hard to make the car move.
Three blocks from home, after the car in front stopped for a pedestrian…my car just…stopped. I tried flooring it, turning it on and off, moving it to park and then to drive again…but it didn’t do anything – and there were people backed up behind me. So, we put the caution lights on, which were really dim and just kinda waited. I didn’t know what to do, we didn’t have a phone book, we didn’t really know who to call – towing, but there’s alot of towing people…and we didn’t know where to tow it to…and I cried. A lot. Thankfully, this guy from NYFD helped us move the car off the road (I can’t push and drive and was having way too much trouble switching gears…apparently, you have to brake instead of pushing on the gas O:)…)
We also finally found AAA’s working number, and thankfully, there was an auto shop 2 miles away. So now, after freaking out most of yesterday (oddly somewhat because I was crying and freaking out) and staying up most of the night (our air mattress bed is still in the car) we’re finally starting to become coherent and waiting for them to call us back and we can (walk to) pick up the car. 🙂
Hopefully they’ll call soon, because I also left my math book in there….(and chocolate). Yesterday, we were very scared and I was all shaky  and most of the night, but looking back, we really were very well taken care of. The NY guy, and the policeman who stayed there till we were towed so people wouldn’t think we were parking (yeah that was, not fun) and the shop being 2 minutes away…and the alternator price not being overly horrible, and we still got a ride back home, so we didn’t have to walk in the freezing air (even Alex was cold). I was too scared yesterday to realize this, but God really did keep us  safe…and I’m not stressed about it anymore.

Scarves

In between math and such, I’ve been working on crocheting some scarves. I’d never made one until a few weeks ago when I realized that they were incredibly expensive and I could probably sew one just as well. Yesterday night I finished my 3rd. I think it’s the best one I’ve done so far (sewing wise). So, I thought I’d show it off. The lighting isn’t terribly great so the colors might look a little odd (but it actually does look nice in real life).
On a random math related note – I think I’m figuring algebra out. Three years after high school, but hey.

Brainstorms and Flies in My Kitchen

Brainstorms are what happen when your thoughts swirl around until they rain onto paper (or a keyboard). They’re also a nice way to spice up a gloomy weekend. Last fall I discovered that listening to Owl City actually helps me with my brainstorming process. It may seem odd, but it helps me focus and think creatively.  So today when I was trying to figure out how to market a project, that’s what I listened to. Very helpful. 🙂
On a completely unrelated note, earlier this week I discovered these weird tiny little flies hanging around my kitchen. We’ve tried everything we can think of to get rid of them – this morning in desperation I just started spraying bleach at them (hey, I was tired). Anyway, they’re now just sort of flying all over my house and  the trash bag we have in the house we can’t take out yet (apartment dumpster is beyond full). So if anyone knows of a good way to make them leave…that’d be nice.

Addendum

Also, I *love* staying home (with my Alex!!!) and being able to make sure it’s clean and lunch is actually put away….and be less stressed.
*happy sigh*
Lunches  that aren’t hotdogs are also a nice benefit.

Math and such

I’m retaking algebra this week (because I could never understand it) to prep for the SAT. I’ve finally got a curriculum I can understand, but I still wonder….who’s idea was it to apply reverse numbers and powers and do math backwards and call it advanced? I’m sure it’s great for scientists, I’m just not quite smart enough to apply it without a headache.
In other news, I made a (real) scrapbook/album of all of my wedding pictures last night. I don’t  usually do the whole scrapbook thing, but it was a special occasion ;). It’s a neat looking scrapbook too – not a traditional wedding album that’s all white and silver or gold.
Scrapbook
Well back to math….

Last Day

Today is my last day at my first (official) job. It’s sort of bittersweet. I’m happy to be able to stay home and study and keep the dishes from piling…and actually cook – but I’ll miss my co-worker, Fatma. She just came over from Turkey, and for being half a world away from each other, we actually have a lot in common. I’ve enjoyed talking to her and helping with english and learning about Turkey and her culture – and how similar our cultures are in some areas. I feel bad for not being as interested in learning about the lives of some of the foreign exchange students we had when I was younger. I was too preoccupied, I guess, and I think I really missed out.
I suppose the nice thing about living in a coastal town in a tourist State is that there are so many people from all over. In a given day, I can hear multiple languages and accents from people all over the globe. Though, I think the most common language is french (we have a large french community apparently) – which can be problematic, because I don’t know french (yet). Sometimes trying to understand what people are asking is hard when half of it isn’t remotely close to english.  So, I decided that to increase my effectiveness in communication(at least in this area), I’ll start taking french in college.
Then, maybe I’ll take turkish.

It's been a while

I haven’t been active in the blogosphere for quite a while, and I’m happy to be getting back to it. I’ve done alot of things and been alot of places – recently, married my best friend and live in a small town in Maine. Apparently there’s only 8k residents, but you wouldn’t know it with all the tourists.
It’s my first time living in an apartment – definitely interesting. Lots of neighbors, some with kids, some creepy-ish, others I don’t really know about yet. Maine has been home to a lot of new experiences. I went apple picking for the first time last week. It’s the first time I’ve seen dramatic (“real” for any native northerners) seasons.  First time I’ve driven on the interstate, and eventually, it’ll be the first time I’ve driven in the snow.
This blog is going to be filled with random experiences and firsts, (constructively) random ideas, thoughts, concepts, opinions, and some of the artsy projects I’m working on.  For now, I have to run back to my last two days of ice cream. Enjoy!