Saturday Brunch

Saturday Brunch

Corned Beef Hash
I love my eggs over easy!

I personally think this is the best Hash I’ve had this side of Lake Washington.

@Skillet

Advertisements

Is time slipping away?

drawing

Yesterday I watched a talk called “How to get a buttcrapload of people to read what you write” by Matthew Inman, creator of The Oatmeal, a comedic blog out of my city, Seattle, WA! I’m going to say right now that The Oatmeal isn’t really the breakfast I’d choose on any given day, but he did have some helpful tips. I didn’t actually write them all out, these are just the ones that gave me that Aha moment!

#1. Make blogs as short and concise as possible. Readers get bored. B.O.R.E.D when you write frustratingly long and meandering blogs.

#2. Make a statement without very many words – a picture if possible. I am not an artist, but I decided to at least try my hand at drawing a stick figure to represent how I’ve been feeling the last few days. Can you relate?

#3. Don’t pander for likes on twitter/facebook/pinterest/or any other social network because your work should speak for itself. I agree on this. I recognize that if you want to get your work out there that your work should really speak first instead of your marketing dollars or time. This frees up a lot of valuable resources, for me that is time. I hate wasting time searching the interwebs for people to like me.

#4. Try Try Try to do what you love if you can! Obviously the caveat here is that for awhile Matthew Inman wasn’t actually doing what he loved. He had to “figure” it out. We are all trying to figure it out and one day,  his Aha moment came. It’s not financially feasible for everyone to just drop their job and pursue their passion, but he was doing his “passion” on the side and if that’s all you can do then that’s all you can do for right now. Try to figure out ways to monetize on your passion like Matthew: he somehow made writing comics (one of the least lucrative industries) into a full-time career.

#5. It’s okay if you don’t know how to draw! Though Matthew Inman knows how to design and do it well, he continues to draw things that I wouldn’t consider those of a well trained artist. Why? Well… he actually explains why. The less perfect something is, the more people seem to like it. I think this is both about people relating to imperfections and also what he says is making things undefinable so any drawing can just become a blank slate for the viewers idea of what it should be.

Well… let’s make this short and sweet! How’s your week going? Are you also wondering where it’s gone?

Letter to Ms. Goldberg – by NTN member Rachael F.

tumblr_mkc125tALi1qln9t3o1_500 tumblr_mkc125tALi1qln9t3o2_500

Dear Ms. Goldberg,

Let us start by saying thank you for being a woman who couldn’t give a damn about how anyone else views her thoughts/actions/life/wardrobe/aesthetic.  Thank you for providing the fuel for burning down what a woman should be.  We ladies of NighTraiN would like to continue that fire in setting social constructs ablaze! Ablaze! Ablaaaaaaze!

In addition to announcing our southern tour in June we’d like you to keep a look out for our new music video “Huntress” coming out this April.  It’s guaranteed to give you a brain boner.  9 out of 10 witch doctors agree!

We’ll make sure to keep in touch and send you a postcard when we see someone in a Jumpin’ Jack Flash tee shirt.

Your Brand New Bestess Palz,

NighTraiN

 

Got a crush on your mind? Steps for moving on.

Having dreams of holding hands while on a nice stroll through the park after grabbing a little Stumptown Coffee ice cream? Endless streaming thoughts of a romantic getaway? Building a life with a white picket fence in the suburbs? Or maybe travelling the world and volunteering to build huts for the less fortunate?

Are your hands fidgeting with your phone as you await calls oUnreturned-Love-unrequited-love-31051498-302-251r texts from him/her and are you wondering if (s)he is calling someone else and texting someone else instead of you?

What do you do when get a text that says something like, “let’s grab coffee?” Do you ask yourself: Is this a date? Should I bring friends? What should I wear? What does this text mean?

If all of these are happening, then you are hardcore crushing. It’s okay. First you just have to recognize that you are in the middle of a crush and then you have to make some decisions. I hate to break it to you, but this is just a crush and will remain one until you get up the courage to wander over to your crush and actually say the words, “will you go out with me?”

 

Decisions, Decisions

It’s time to decide what you want to do.

Do you want to stop having this crush? Yes or No

IF YES:               There are a few options:

1.  Get up the courage to tell this person that you admire that you are interested and would like to grab coffee, lunch, drinks, etc.

What this will do: It will take the element of mystery out of the picture. Many times it is just the mystery of what things could be like and an imagination gone wild that fuel some of these unbearable crushes.

Often, when you let out the thing that’s been on your mind for awhile it releases all the uncertainty and tension you’ve had surrounding said person.

I know that you may fear rejection, but if you are rejected the sting will last a moment to a few weeks; something that for most is often much more bearable than the feeling of pining after someone for months or even years while getting nothing in return. You might even be able to move onto someone new that could be your next significant other by getting over this crush.

There’s still that “other” possibility, the one that you feel is less likely to happen, which is why you’ve been keeping this to yourself for so long and it’s that your offer might be accepted, but you’ll never know until you ask. So ask!

I’ve had the personal experience of having a crush workout. Okay… I did pine away for this person for going on a year and a half, but when I finally mustered up the nerve to talk to him we ended up dating for four years. Four years! Go out there and get em people!

2.     Get to know the person better

This might seem counterintuitive when you’re trying to get over a crush, but for some people as I said before, it’s just the element of mystery that is fueling the crush. Sometimes once you get to know someones  quirks, political values, and strongly held beliefs, you realize omg, this would never work! Thank God I got to know them better.

If all this does is make your crush worse still and you want to get over it. See #1 and #3.

3.    Avoid, Avoid, Avoid!

Often the key to not having a crush is not seeing the crush. This isn’t an option for everyone. Some people work in a nearby space, have a class or two with someone or maybe it’s your next door neighbor, but for those of you that are popping into that same café every morning to stare dreamily at your barista, find a new coffee shop. If you are living in Seattle, this shouldn’t be hard.

Other avoidance measures:

Delete their number from your phone for awhile: If you think you will need their number again someday, give it to one of your closest friends and tell them the situation (though I’m sure they already know). Tell them that you are not to have access to this number for awhile.

Stop checking their facebook: Stalking got that much worse when facebook came around with access to all of your crushes whereabouts, favorite books, music choices, etc. I know this is a hard one. If you have a really really bad crush that is tearing you apart, I would go so far as to delete them from your facebook if at all possible, just so you don’t even have the ability to see who they’re hanging out with, where they’ve checked in and to cruise through their lifetime worth of photos.

 

IF NO:          

1.      Ask yourself why you don’t want to get over this crush?

If it is fear then I would like to redirect you to #1 in getting over this person. Fear should never ever keep you held hostage. I fear a lot of things, like heights, getting stapled to death, and ants, but… I don’t let them stop me. I still stand up on the back edge of risers (those staggered steps in choir)  like a champ and I still staple papers together. Fear never gets anyone anywhere ever, except for in last place.

2.      You actually enjoy having a crush

Well you are a rare bird. If you are one of the few people that enjoys having a crush because it stimulates some masochistic side of yourself, then go on ahead. Some people say crushes help them produce a large volume of work, like fine art, plays, music, and other ideas. Sometimes they call these crushes their muses. If your crush is your muse and you’re okay with it, then I say, “go on ahead.” If there is ever any point in which you feel like it is draining you too much and you need to finally move on, please see my previous ideas.

 

Well friends, those are my ideas. What has worked for you in the past? Let me know! Add a comment to this page and let others know so they can get over that never ending crush!

Email: durteelawndree@gmail.com

 

 

Thoughtful Thursday: A place to code home



I’m finding so many amazing websites these days that I have to share yet another!
As a woman thinking about a career change, it’s hard not to think about taking a dip in the coding pool. When I say coding I mean getting into software programming, which means learning lots of different computer language like HTML, CSS, Java, Python, Ruby, and more.
I’ve always been at least slightly interested in delving into one of these languages. When I was a mere Freshman in college, when creating your own blog site was becoming all the rage I actually took the time to learn quite a bit of HTML. Somehow, I got scared of what “coding” meant. Plenty of people were doing computer science, but they were all guys and at the time it didn’t occur to me that maybe they knew something I didn’t and that was that the next big thing was actually the computer industry.
Okay, I could have flipped open any magazine that was talking about up and coming businesses, especially being brethren of the Silicon Valley, but it just didn’t occur to me what a big market it was going to be today. And so… I got an English degree.
I actually love my English degree. It’s taught me how to speak more clearly, form my thoughts into coherent sentences, spell lots of big words that I may or may not ever use, and writing is definitely the one thing I do every single day of my life.
            Well enough talking. The site that I found is Code Academy. It is a free interactive site that feels a lot like a game and gives you a lot of the basics of many coding languages. It’s so fun that it makes me want to go back for more!
            Currently I’m easing myself back into HTML because it’s been a long time. It’s really easy, but I don’t want to skip any step and find myself lost.
            Will I ever actually use any of the programming languages that I am going to try learning?
            Who knows! My hope is that I will learn something new, I’ll have more to include on my resume, and perhaps it’ll lead to some new occupation in the future. If you are anyone that has been interested in at least trying out coding, this is the site for you! It’ll give you a taste of code and you can decide from there if you want to pursue delving further into the muck!

Whoa Wednesday: A website that brings a generation of teen women together


Tavi Gevinson
The other day I found this site: Rookie Mag. I didn’t find it by looking for it because I’m not sure why I would have looked for it in the first place. I found it because Gawker highlighted a video by founder, Tavi Gevinson doing a TED talk on Still Figuring it Out, which you should probably watch.What’s special about Tavi is that she not only prepared this almost 8 minute talk discussing female power, oppression, obsession, and confusion, but she did it and she’s only a teenager.
Tavi is a fifteen year old sophomore that started a magazine called Rookie magazine when she was fourteen to create a space for young girls to talk, converge, celebrate, write, and showcase their feelings about becoming a woman.
In Tavi’s first editors letter to her burgeoning audience of teen girls she informs them what the magazine is about.
“I don’t have the answers. Rookie is not your guide to Being a Teen. It’s not a pamphlet on How to Be a Young Woman. It is, quite simply, a bunch of writing and art we like and believe in.”
She further goes on to state in her talk that the magazine isn’t created to “give girls the answers” it’s actually created so they will “give themselves permission to find the answers themselves.” I honestly can’t think of anything more admirable then creating a space for young women to choose to “not” identify themselves in any one real way and to let themselves question for as long as they can, need, or want to until they find the answers they’re seeking.
It seems there is often a rush to grow up so fast, to understand who you are, how to get a boyfriend, how to fit in, how to be popular and this site teaches girls that there’s no one way that you need to be, no set of “things” that you need to have. The ideas of what it is to be a teenage girl are scoffed as mere presuppositions of an old archetype that should be thrown out. Being a teenage is “complicated.” Any person that’s ever been a teenage girl knows that there is no end to the complications that arise from feeling like a confused, hormonal, estranged, deranged being with no idea how to correctly navigate the world.
            I am now 33, which means when I was a teenager when the internet was just really getting a foothold on the market. I remember thinking… omg, imagine the things you can do with the internet, like talk to people across the country and some from other parts of the world! At the time I was using a slow dialup connection that often took a couple of minutes to connect. Pages back then often took minutes to load, but I didn’t care. I would wait the long minutes and log into any number of AOL chatrooms just to get the experience of talking to someone who wasn’t from where I was from, which was a young and newly booming Silicon Valley.
            So now there are young girls who look at the internet and don’t just think that they can perhaps talk to someone across the world, they find ways to engage the world! I am so in awe of young women like her, the same way I was in awe of my friend Zeena who started a local zine when we were the same age. It excites me that this young woman is doing global outreach to other young women. If you are a woman, a man dating a woman, a man that has daughters, a man that wants his sons to understand women, then you should take the time to look at this site and send it to others.
            Seeing young women express themselves without worrying what someone will think of their quirks, their intelligence, their nerdiness, their beauty, their disregard for fashion, and anything else is truly what gives them so much strength. I must say, I am extremely excited to see what this next generation of women brings to the table; it’s going to be hawt.

First Friday: My first podcast ever goes live!

Last month I decided to do a series of interviews with people about their First Love and today I am releasing the first installment with my friend Nick!
I decided to name the podcast Durtee Lawndree in line with my blog, because it exemplifies exactly what I want my blog to be about and that is people “airing their truths.” I had a great time talking with everyone and am super excited about releasing future episodes.

What I’ve learned through this first podcasting process:

#1. Interviewing is a learning process and I can only get better
     For those of you that know me, you probably know that when I start talking I can definitely hold me own, but when it comes to sitting with someone, asking questions and speaking with them, my nerves get a little itchy and inflamed. For this first session I had set interview questions because of this fear, which I think worked well for me. My hope going forward is that when I sit down and interview I will be able to sense the interviewee a little better and formulate questions as it goes along.
    

#2. Editing is a learning process and I can only get better
      I’ve pretty much only used my Garage Band and some Pro-Tools for light music editing, which means I have never been in the position of splicing and dicing a whole conversation.
For this first interview I cut almost 45 minutes down to about 20. It hurt my soul to take out huge chunks of conversation that I thought were interesting and funny. However, I knew that I needed to shorten a lengthy conversation that did encounter some stumbles as well as had information that wasn’t necessarily relevant to our conversation.
This part of the editing process reminds me of when I’m editing my own writing and I think… this part is so intriguing and well written and I have to throw it in the garbage. Sometimes I can save the writing for later, but sometimes I can’t because it would be too disjointed as its own.

#3. DON’T Interview at a super loud venue like… a coffee shop
      When I was scheduling times with people to meet there was no part of me that realized I needed to account for noise level. This is obviously the mistake of a beginning podcaster. In my mind, cafes are quiet and that’s why people are always there studying, right?
In reality, cafes are quite loud with the bustle of the baristas making drinks, flipping book pages, conversations, spoons in coffee mugs, all stuff I realized is white noise that I drown out while working on a project. At least I know I don’t have ADD.
Since at this point I don’t have a real mic and was using my handy iphone mic, I don’t have very much ability to isolate the conversation from the other noises, though I did use a variety of techniques to minimize it. I’m looking forward to getting a mic at some point for this project, but until then it’s gonna be up to Carmen, my iphone, to help me with the interviews.

#4. Patience
      As with any new skill it does test a little bit of patience. Editing itself is not all that hard, but getting to know short cuts and accidentally pressing the wrong one, deleting a section and not noticing till later is a little trying. As I edited, things ran more steadily and the process became a little faster. There definitely are still elements that I have to learn like making cuts and transitions a little more smooth, but I’m sure that will come with more editing experience.

#5. Podcasting is really fun
      Though I write a lot and I have finished writing products, I realized there’s nothing quite like having a finished sound product. Strangely it felt like I’d accomplished more in this 25 minute segment than in all the thousands of hours I’ve done writing throughout my life. I’m still not sure why that is.

If you have any comments, questions, concerns, want to be interviewed, want to give me free editorial tutorials, have a mic you want to donate or anything else is on your mind, email me: durteelawndree@gmail.com

Now here’s the podcast!
If your browser has trouble loading the podcast go directly to Podomatic and listen from there.

Tasty Thursday: I suck at cooking but I do it anyway and so should you!

Most days the idea of cooking a meal is daunting and a chore. It’s something I very much want to love, but when I look at a variety of ingredients my mind doesn’t automatically figure out how to pair them.
For those of you that have friends that cook, as I do (I even have a friend that’s a chef), it’s often hard to relay to them your excitement about being a good cook while realizing you’re terrible.

“Oh it’s easy, you just put spice 1, spice 2, and ingredient in a bowl, mix them and voila!”

Whatever, friends that know how to cook; this is not what happens in my world. In general I’ll add spice 1, spice 2, and ingredient and it turns into some either extremely bland yet colorful dish or an extremely over-spiced, palette confusing mess. Just like outfits and color coordinating I have no idea how to mix and match ingredients.

I’ve been told multiple times that I don’t need to know how to mix ingredients, it’s all about just mixing it up and trying new things and seasoning it to my taste.
The fact is that I don’t even know what that means. If I don’t know even the very basics of cooking beyond the difference between dicing and chopping then how am I supposed to move forward? Where do I go from here? Why even keep cooking?

Well, I’ve decided instead of listening to all that totally wrong advice for me from people who actually know how to cook that I would listen to myself. If I don’t know how to pair things well, then I am just going to follow recipes exactly. When I say exactly, I mean down to the last grain of salt – sea salt that is.

Last night I decided to prepare a dish called Vegan Coconut Curry Red Lentil Soup that I found on Food.com. I chose this recipe because I knew that I had lentils and coconut milk in my cupboard, the only ingredient on the list that wasn’t at my house was the cilantro, so this made it a cheap meal for me. However, for you, I decided to calculate the price per serving just in case you are wondering.

I try to find the best deals when shopping and so I tend to shop around, though do a majority of my shopping at Trader Joe’s and Madison Market Co-op near my house. There were some things I didn’t add because I’m assuming that you have some basic staples like oil to cook with, salt, sugar, and water. Usually these products are bought in bulk and so the cost is fairly negligible.
Below you will find the cost of the product on the left, on the right you will find a note if it was changed or if I am noting how it was purchased. 

Recipe for 12 Servings  (I was making the dish for my band)

($0)1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil      I used Coconut Oil because I don’t use Olive Oil for cooking -ever
($.50)1 1/2 tablespoons curry powder   purchased in bulk section at Co-op
($0)3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
($.89)1 1/2 onion, chopped
($.79)3 carrots, peeled and diced              I included the full bag cost
($.50)3 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated       Uwajimaya 1.79lb 
($.50)3 garlic cloves, chopped                  Madison Market 1.99lb       
($0)3 teaspoons salt
($0)1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
($.99)1/2 cup tomato paste                     
($0)10 1/2 cups water
($1.98)1 (22 1/2 ounce) can coconut milk   Two 14oz cansUsed Light Coconut Milk
($1.86)3 cups red lentils                              Madison Market   1.86 per lb
($2.58)1 (22 1/2 ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained (chickpeas)   Two 14oz cans
($0)1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
($.79)1 1/2 to taste fresh cilantro (for garnish)   Bundle for .79
($.39)1 1/2 to taste lime wedge (for garnish)  Bought one from TJ’s for lime wedge and lime juice
Total: 11.77  
Additional Garnish: Avocado  (1.50)
This makes each serving approximately .98c   I did not make note of what things were organic or not. I buy some stuff organic and not others depending on my checking account. This is a fairly low cost meal, but I know people that can do it for cheaper and it can definitely get pricier by buying everything organic. This is a great recipe if you want a lot of meals to come out of it.
The original recipe says 1 serving is 469.5 cals per serving. I’m pretty sure that is reduced because I used light coconut milk but I didn’t calculate it. 
How did it turn out?
It was amazing! Apparently following a recipe really works wonders, who’d have thunk? My band mates loved it and so did my roommies, so I think that I actually accomplished something.A step in the right direction.
I don’t know if I’ll ever be an excellent cook, but I certainly can follow a recipe like a champ and so I’m just going to continue doing this. I’m going to attempt to cook at least one new meal a week, so stay tuned for those. In the meantime if you can’t cook like me, there is hope!