margotvankapelle: (fairydust)
I am in a slump.  Not a big one, just enough that I spent most of today asleep in lieu of doing laundry.  I want to sew, but can't quite bring myself to do so. Most irritating.

Um. Well.

Jul. 30th, 2012 03:57 pm
margotvankapelle: (sun)
We went through this house today.  It's a couple of blocks from Boe's school; we can see the roof of the school building from one of the back bedrooms.  It's also in an "urban renewal" zone, which tends to be code for "crime tends to be high", but in looking at the statistics, this little area is a growing oasis of lower crime rates than elsewhere in the zip code.  There are crazy amounts of tax exemptions and credits one can claim as well as some of the lowest housing costs in the city.

Let's face it:  Is it possible to have brand-new stick built construction anywhere else in the entire flipping United States for less than $90,000?  Yeah, didn't think so.  Besides, it is just the architecture that Boe and I really like and he fell in love with the place as soon as he walked in the door. 

  This house (and its companion house at 2412 Gay St.) have sat empty for the past 4 years; they were originally closer to $130,000 but then the housing market went to crap and basically everyone lost interest in buying real estate.  So the nonprofit group that owns these properties is making down payment assistance available as well as very favorable lending terms through a partnership with the Urban League.

So we've applied to be considered for the house at 2416 Gay.  We'll see if they approve us; the worst they can say is "no".
margotvankapelle: (internetforever)
I have missed my sister.  <3

Lennie has gotten much talller...that kid now reaches my shoulder (I'm 5'6") at the age of eight.  o.O

We (myself, my sister, and my brother-in-law) have been crazy busy at Mom's.  In the past 24 hours, we have managed to:
  • Remove Mom's old dishwasher
  • Install Mom's new dishwasher
  • Paint and stain Mom's deck
  • Kill off multiple wasp nests
  • Cut down a largish lilac bush
  • Cut down a medium-sized ash tree (deceased tree courtesy of the emerald ash borer)
  • Mulch Mom's front yard landscaping.

I am pooped.

Tasty!

May. 17th, 2012 09:46 pm
margotvankapelle: (Default)
Made pumpkin chocolate chip muffins this evening. I sure hope there are some left over for breakfast tomorrow. Deeeeeeeeelish.


Posted via m.livejournal.com.

margotvankapelle: (internetforever)
Mental to-do list:

Today--
Make sure Boe mows the lawn
Clean litter boxes
Deep-clean living room
Type depression paper

Tomorrow--
Moar laundry
Clean out closet
Take closet leavings to Goodwill

Thursday--
Clean bathroom
Moar laundry

Friday--
Work on garden

Busy day

Dec. 14th, 2011 12:15 pm
margotvankapelle: (xmastree)
Today I have a doctor's appointment (plus vaccinations, oh I can hardly wait! /sarcasm), more of the spiced pecans and almonds to do up, and napkins to make so that Boe can ship my sister's family Christmas presents tomorrow.  Then at 7 tonight, Boe and I are going to the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception for a free chamber-orchestra Christmas concert.  I'm petty stoked about that, as I rarely get to hear live classical and/or Christmas music these days.

Harrumph.

Dec. 9th, 2011 11:14 pm
margotvankapelle: (marie antoinette grumpy)
I managed to burn the first batch of almonds.  Dammit.  They are stuck to the pan with concrete-like overcarmelized glaze.  This is gonna be a hoot to try to clean this pan. :-/

However, the second batch turned out okay.  Not as good as the pecans, but okay.  So it's salvageable.
margotvankapelle: (cake)
...so today Boe and I cleaned the downstairs of the house and got started on the gifties we're giving each family for my mom's extended familial Christmas party tomorrow.  I tweaked the pecans recipe by increasing the white sugar to 3/4 cup and added 1/4 cup of brown sugar.  I also doubled the cinnamon.

Good God these are amazing.

I can hardly wait to see how the almonds turn out!  <3 <3 <3
margotvankapelle: (housekeeper from hell)
I'm doing a test run for the Christmas pecans I'm making for this weekend.  Recipe is here; I added a splash of vanilla extract, a 1/2 tsp of cardamom, a tiny pinch of galingale, a mere dusting of nutmeg (my mom's not real fond of nutmeg or cloves; naturally, I like both), and subbed brown sugar for white.

The house smells AMAZING. 

ETA:  The cardamom overtook the cinnamon just a hair, and they weren't quite as sweet as I'd like.  Hm, I think I'm going to add a 1/4 cup of white sugar to bring the total sugar to 3/4 cup, knock the cardamom down to 1/4 tsp, and try it a bit differently tomorrow.  They are tasty though; Boe will like them because they aren't quite so sweet as the ones I remember from various festivals in the region.  Hm, I wonder if adding a little bit of honey might do the trick instead of the 1/4 cup white sugar...thoughts?
margotvankapelle: (housekeeper from hell)
Been knitting like a fiend, and I have 16 washcloths done up.  Time to move on to the hot pads -- first I ahve to nit them, then I get to felt them!  Woohoo!
margotvankapelle: (SEWALLTHETHINGS! by tonyadmay)
Here's the game plan for Christmas On The Cheap(tm):

Each of the families (Dad and Bitz, Mom, Melanie et al., and Brett et al.) is going to get a little basket of household goodies, consisting of:

1. Set of 6 napkins, folded and displayed with...
2. Wire-wrapped and beaded napkin rings
3.  Set of 4 knitted cotton dishcloths
4.  Set of 3 knitted and felted woolen hot pads/trivets
5.  Packages of German roasted pecans and almonds
6.  Homemade dog biscuits for the families with dogs
7.  Catnip-filled fleece toys for the families with cats

The whole shebang should cost me less than $50.  For 4 families, that's pretty damned good. 

I also have a scarf knitted in seed stitch for Mom (her favorite stitch), a pair of really cute earrings for Lennie (the super awesome niece of amazingness), a cross-stitch of a cat that looks just like her cat Mittens for Lennie, and a pair of earrings for Melanie.

I was able to score Melanie's earrings for free through Swagbucks , the yarn for Mom's scarf was a gift, and I can use my employee discount for everything else except for the wool yarn I need for the hot pads. That I'll have to get from Michael's or Joann's, although Michael's will be easier for me as far as convenience goes. 

Our girl Melmel (who just got her first tattoo this week!) is getting a new phone, courtesy of a contract extension that we'll be signing.  I'm also going to go through my collection of romance novels and send some to her, as she has recently become a fan and by God I am glad she's getting over her Twilight obsession.

And now for the only Christmas splurge this year -- I have a Garmin GPS on layaway for Boe...shhhhh, don't tell him!
margotvankapelle: (ooooooo)

So to recap:

Random Gamer Guy is gone...but not before stealing a pack of Magic: The Gathering cards Boe had picked up that Friday.  I don't care too much, except Boe is unhappy, and that makes me unhappy.

Boe's temp job is finished up, and now we wait to hear from the agency for another assignment.

I might have tied one on last Friday to celebrate Random Gamer Guy's departure; the hangover served to remind me that I am not as young as I once was, and that my liver hates me.

Boe and I held a little backyard barbecue on Saturday.  Everything was delicious and (as is par the course for me) since I bought too much food, we'll be eating burgers and hot dogs the rest of the week.  But they are delicious, and that's the important part.

My college's financial aid office is screwing around with me, and I don't like it.  My account has been flagged for verification Every. Single. Year. and this year was no exception.  I turned in copies of my tax return on July 18, and my account is STILL "pending, under review."  This means that they have not released my financial aid to the bookstore so I can get my books.  Because school starts in a week, I'm sure all of the used copies of the textbooks have been sold, so I'll either need to rent textbooks (which is what I'm considering) or buy brand new ones.  I am tempted to go to the financial aid office tomorrow and break some heads.

And the only paperwork I'm waiting on to complete my nursing program applications (yes, two:  one for the LPN program and one for the RN program) is my highschool transcripts.  I called my alma mater a week ago Tuesday to request 2 sets of official transcripts.  The said they'd be in the mail that same day.  I should have recieved them by Wednesday.  They are still not here.  I am tempted to go down there and break some heads too.

I am so excited at the prospect of being able to work on sewing projects!
margotvankapelle: (asshat)

I have finally hit the end of my rope with Random Gamer Guy...you know, Mr. Shits-his-pants?

So within the past three weeks, he has left the toilet seat and lid up -- and a fecal suprise dissolving in the toilet bowl -- eight times.  Keep in mind, we only have the one bathroom.  Also keep in mind, I have three cats and a dog...a dog that likes to drink out of the toilet if the seat and lid are up.  A couple of the cats are also interested in drinking from the World's Biggest Drinking Fountain, given the chance.  The first couple of times, I reminded Random Gamer Guy that hey, the pets will drink out of the toilet bowl, so put the seat and lid down; while I'm at it, flush, willya? 

I guess because I have ovaries, Random Gamer Guy decided not to take me seriously...until my husband managed to baptize his own ass with filthy water during a 2 AM why-bother-turning-the-light-on-I-have-lived-in-this-house-ten-years-I-can-manage-to-use-the-bathroom-just-fine-in-the-dark trip.  Boe sat down, got his butt soaking wet, and turned on the light to mop up the water he splashed all over the floor.  That's when he discovered Random Gamer Guy had taken a crap, left the seat and lid up, and not bothered to flush. So Boe had a chat with Random Gamer Guy, gave him what-for,  and pointed out that RGG will make our pets sick if he continued the bathroom passive-aggressiveness.  

It's happened six times since, and tonight was the final straw.  In addition to the toilet shenanigans, Random Gamer Guy has not paid his rent.

I am so evicting him.  In my municipality, I am supposed to give him 10 days.  That' all I am willing to give him.  My critters are my babies and he is endangering their health.  Dude's gotta go.

I must say, I felt a certain dark pleasure when writing out the notice to vacate the premises.  We'll see how everything goes.
margotvankapelle: (housekeeper from hell)

In my minor fit of productivity today, I sent out several applications on Boe's behalf.  One of them is for a charter school here in Fort Wayne, and THAT would be ideal, so I'll keep my fingers crossed.

Oh, and I made our weekly bread:


That's just one batch -- there were 2 other batches as well, and the cell phone in the bottom right of the picture is for scale.  I decided to do up our bread as large rolls so I can freeze them individually instead of taking the risk of mold growth (hot, humid environment) after a paltry 3 days.  I must say, this is my best attempt yet at bread/rolls.  The crumb turned out very even and just ever so slightly sweet, and the crust was nice and chewy, but not painfully so.  I pretty much eyeballed everything, so there really wasn't a recipe unless you count 2 cups water, 1 package yeast (my starter got really gross and I was afraid of contamination issues, so I tossed it), 1 stick melted butter, 1 cup sugar, salt to taste, and then enough white flour to make everything come together nicely.  I thnk it might have worked out to 4-6 cups of flour, when all's said and done.  This was a single-rise bread, since I formed the dough into balls before letting anything rise.  Dough is done rising when it doesn't bounce back after being poked gently. 15 minutes per batch in a 350 degree oven, and they came out perfectly.  See?



And I just realized they look an awful lot like manchet bread loaves were/are supposed to be like... 
 


margotvankapelle: (housekeeper from hell)

Here's what I had planned to get done today:

Clean the bathroom (Yes, with RGG in the house I use medical-grade latex gloves, no worries, darlings!)

Get 5 loads of laundry done

Clean the bedroom

Here's what I actually accomplished:

Threw 1 load of clothes into the washer (in my defense, the cats had soaked some articles of clothing in that particular load, so I had to run it twice with a bunch of white vinegar to get the smell completely out)

Whined about not being able to go to Pennsic as usual this year

Figured out Pennsic tentage for NEXT year (it has crossed my mind that I am either the poster child for the adage "Hope springs eternal" or for the one that goes "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result."  Not sure which one applies, I'll let y'all come to your own conclusions.)

Watched The Steve Wilkos Show -- OK, I admit it, I like the trainwreckiness of trash talk shows.

Aaaaaaaaand that's about it.

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