Tuesday, August 26, 2008

strange vegetables

weirdest stir-fry ever:

the result of whatever I had in the garden this morning and my random impulse purchases at work tonight

japanese eggplant
chanterelle mushrooms
broccoli (garden)
heirloom tomatoes (garden)
sorrel (garden)
dragon beans
parsley, thai basil, rosemary (garden)
habanero pepper (garden)
jalepeno pepper
olive oil and butter

tasted good, although I might not serve it to company.

this is sad.

In Touch magazine has informed me that the rumors that Quentin Tarentino asked Britney Spears to be in his remake of Faster Pussycat! Kill! Kill! are NOT TRUE.

Damn. How awesome would that be.

I'm going to go listen to my Faster Pussycat soundtrack album and think sadly about all the lost possibilities.

looking forward

to buying camping equipment and camping with greg this fall. i can't wait to own my own tent. and wake up outside again, which i haven't done since i was eighteen on the last camping trip ali and ira and i went on. and roasting things in camp fires! and those nights looking into the fires, talking, no tv or reading or other distractions.

to not driving back and forth to ny every week and having more time and making more art. or any art outside my sketchbook. although i have been good this summer about really working in my sketchbook consistently. and writing a lot.

to practicing the drums and actually having band practice. and making my awesome mysoulisatigerloomingoverthecity tshirt design a reality.

to planning my 30th birthday party on saturday september 20th! best party ever.

calm before the storm

I think it was the most beautiful fall day ever today. Getting early up to take my walk before work, it was nice wearing my sweatshirt and it being all crisp and cozy and bright and shiny. I love new england falls, something in my heart just picks up and gets excited on days like today.

So much promise. So much hope. Anything could happen when the sky is that blue, and the greens are that green.

I'm writing this in the kitchen after work cooking my dinner and even though it's cold I opened the window because I love the feel of these very early fall nights. Sitting at the kitchen table drinking red wine and smelling/feeling/tasting the night air is, I don't know, cleansing? Exciting? Inspiring?

Today I met my small goals of remaining calm at work, even right up until the end with that woman in the cafe who had no idea how to use her $3000 brand new powerbook and thought she'd blame eliza and I. So we each had to stay an extra half hour late and explain the concept of internet. Or the "interweb" as she called it. We are the goddesses of patience.

I took a long walk on this beautiful morning. When I got home I made really good coffee and picked broccoli and tomatoes out of the garden for tonights dinner. I picked a bouquet of roses and gerber daisies for the kitchen table. I invented a smashing outfit of bright green, mustard yellow, purple, cowboy boots, and really good jeans. I got to work early with my best attitude. Whatever that means.

I keep trying to remember what I care about ever second, no matter what. I write in my journal and draw on breaks. I breathe. I look at trees. I take care of my garden. I stretch and dance and do little yoga things. Breathe, breathe, breathe.

And my animal card today was snake, transmutation and magic.


Friday, August 22, 2008

which is not to say. that change isn't good.

I am frequently entertaining fantasies of total and complete change.

Instead of driving to work, turning the car south and going to texas, or back to new orleans, or hell, north to montana to be a cowboy. Driving driving driving, away from connecticut and nyc, to places with skies and plains and views.

Quitting everything and living on a farm or on a boat.

My happiest moment this summer was when I arrived on the cape and drove straight to the beach in south dennis by myself and danced in the ocean during a midsummer dusk. When I first put my barefeet into the ocean I almost cried. That has to mean something.

I still really, really like my job, I do. And I'm grateful to have it. But I feel like, something, I don't know what, has to change...

...location, people, sleeping schedule, maybe I need some travel, I know I need more art but when, and I need to crochet the dress I invented in my head last spring, practice the drums, but paintings I really really need. I think...However much I try to quit painting, I can't, for some reason I need to make these ridiculous things...

Last night I awoke from a really good dream, to the police arriving at 5am because the neighbors were fighting. I think I've been confused by that all day. It was a nice dream though.

How I've successfully not lost my mind so far.

I'm not entirely sure. After day after day where I feel like I work as hard as I possibly can, so much that I can't breathe or think, and still it's not good enough.

But today someone was rubbing my neck in the booth, and remarked that I didn't really feel that tense. Which is amazing, since I always carry all my stress and tension in my body.

I've been trying so hard to be present, to be in my body, to stretch and to breathe.

Getting up early, taking my walks in the morning, taking time to stand barefoot in the grass and look at my flowers in the early morning. Driving home at night with all the windows open, listening to music I love loud. Sitting in the sun on my breaks and letting my mind go blank. Bubble baths.

Reading my animal card every morning and thinking about it and trying to act accordingly.

Allowing myself certain daydreams as a guilty pleasure.

Noticing the weather.

Being barefoot as much as possible.

Standing in yoga positions whenever I can. Dancing as I cook and water the plants.

Making sure I take notice of small physical things that bring me pleasure, taking that moment in the morning to enjoy snuggling against my sheets, taking naps in the afternoon with my windows open.

And buying myself Dogfish Head pumpkin beer, good cheese, Spicy Thai kettle chips, and a heirloom tomato before I left work today. Getting home and taking some old paintings of mine out of the attic and hanging them in the hall, to remind me of who I am.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

beauty for it's own sake

I've always been really into vegetables when gardening, and this summer I thought that was all I'd do. Because I'm pretty practically minded, and vegetable and herb plants are both beautiful and functional, so perfect. When I started this garden in the spring I was really not going to put in many flowers. I just planted the morning glories so there would be something on the fence.

but then i bought that yellow rosebush with ali and katie at walmart on a whim because it was cheap and it was beautiful and it needed a home, and i loved it, and now i have four rosebushes, and i don't know, i kept buying flowers, and i just love them so much. and the roses everywhere make me so happy.

and my morning glories just bloomed and they are so breathtaking, and they made my whole day the first morning i was getting into the car and saw them. what incredible blues and purples. wow.

and the experience all summer of having giant bouquets of flowers on the kitchen table that i picked myself...and hanging out in the yard looking at flowers...it's been really great, and it's helped me maintain some degree of sanity this summer.

so maybe i shouldn't have been so smug about flowers, about growing things only for beauty. i mean, i have houseplants i love so much that they are like pets, so what was i even thinking?

in conclusion, next year i'm going to work on my flowerbeds.

and on a sad note, my squash plants had developed a fungus and i had to dig them out and throw them away today. which is hard because i hate to give up on plants. but now the garden looks much better. even though i felt like i was killing my dear friends.

Monday, August 4, 2008

celebration of life

instead of going to a funeral today (I wanted to and I couldn't)...


went to work and did a good job.

bought two for the price of one (she would have appreciated that) rose bushes and planted one in the yard, one to be planted on my day off wednesday after I think about the arrangement of things in the yard. I planted the one I got for free for gramma bess, because she liked bargains.

took my walk on the bike trail and thought about stuff.

got my fourth tattoo, the beautiful mermaid lady rin drew for me. and that was a good experience all around. And I met my goal of getting a tattoo created by someone I care about before I turn thirty, and it is perfect.

walked home from downtown with my crazy post-tattoo bandage and went to stop & shop for supplies.

talked to father about funeral.

made and labeled and froze three containers of pesto from stuff from my garden so I can eat summer things in winter. Two traditional basil, one spicy cilantro. I love the spicy cilantro one a lot. And all from garden things.

Am cooking myself a special dinner, a sort of ragu/stewy thing of steak tips sauted in olive oil, butter, a bottle of red wine, garlic and shallots and a jalapeno, with summer squash from ali, purple carrots from the noho farmers market, and red chard, rosemary, broccoli, and tomatoes from my garden thrown in. Simmered on the stove for a while, then served over leftover cold white basmati rice I think.

That where I am now, writing this while the summer stew simmers.

I'll probably eat while watching bad reality tv from the tivo (I love Money) which isn't very meaningful so I don't know where fits in, but whatever, take care of my tattoo, talk to greg, and read some of the poetry which was waiting for me from amazon when I got home from nyc yesterday (A Doorless Knocking Into Night, by Lexi Rudnitsky and Actual Air by David Berman).
And write the more secret details of the day into my journal.

Like the anger. And the guilt. And sorrow. That accompanies all of this.

Right now, I appreciate Greg, who told me to plant flowers when I couldn't go to the funeral, and that that would be ok. Beth, for giving me a second chance and having dinner with me last week. Rin, for drawing me this beautiful tattoo, and for being himself. Sarah K, for being there when I lost it at work last week, and for hugging me. And because she writes on facebook about quiche. Emerald for being tough and awesome and fighting through this. And my other gramma, because she ate raw oysters with me on cape cod last week, and because she understands parts of me that noone else does. And for gramma bess, because she loved us so much, even though she never understood us for a second. But she took us to diners, and bought all our school clothes, even though they were hideous, and let us watch tv endlessly and eat ice sandwiches and mcdonalds, and took us all out to breakfast every saturday and brought us cold cuts and knishes from sal's deli every friday, along with crazy muffins from stop & shop, pink strawberry and green pistachio, and made the best tuna fish possible on this earth, served on little dinner rolls, and wonderful brisket and chop suey and matzo ball soup, and bought me all these my little ponies and my little pony accessories like this weird robe and crown when ali was in the hospital and I stayed at her house when I was in kindergarten, and played cards with the ladies and had so many friends, and such an awesome taste in home decorating, and she loved me, and I wish I'd gotten a chance to say goodbye.

I don't know where that came from. That's not where I was going with this at all.

I think, I'm turning thirty in slightly more then a month, and someone who always took care of me as a child just died on saturday, and I'm trying to grow up, and I'm trying to do that by being present, and this is what I did today to take care of myself.