You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Apple’s been AWOL’ tag.
Mercy! Has it really been 17 days since Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival wrapped? It feels like it was just this last weekend, and I am still absolutely flying from it. We had a spectacular weekend celebrating poetry on film – you can see all the good stuff here (pictures) and here (the finalists) and here (all the films), if you weren’t able to make it, or if you want to relive it (highly recommended! Omg, so much good work!)
I feel like I came out of this year better than I went into it – it’s been a slammin’ year, y’all.* And I was about a week behind the whole time. And I got super ambitious halfway through when I realized we had a glut of Very Good Submissions, so I decided we needed a second day of showings, but hadn’t really thought about the work that entailed (oops). So what I’m saying is that, whoa – I’m kinda proud of myself for getting it together on time.
But more than that, I’m still awash in all the feels about the the festival itself. In a nutshell, even with a couple of late-presenting snafus, it went off beautifully, and I was thrilled with the shows. But more than that, I was thrilled with the connections that happened.
Friends came from across state and out of state. There were lots of hugs, and people got to reunite and to meet each other – some of them who had learned about each other just online. Makers met makers and talked about the things that makers talk about when you get them together. It was more than I could have hoped for.**
Looking down the barrel of the afterparty,*** I very much expected that when everything was put to bed this year, I would be exhausted. But instead I put it down feeling invigorated, inspired, and excited.
One of the things I do at festival is catch as much footage as I can of people talking about the festival. Mostly it’s because I love a souvenir (and also, it’s for grant apps), and there’s nothing nicer than a moving snapshot, hello. But also, it’s because I am a curious creature who’s generally engaged in some research, and primary sources are the best thing in the world for research purposes. So I asked questions – I asked about process, and about favorites, and about what it’s like to be a judge or a filmmaker, or an audience member. I asked What made you do this? I asked How does it feel on this side of the curtain? I asked What do you think about the short film format? I asked How did you pick your collaborators? And it turns out that I know some super smart people who have super smart answers, and I was bowled over, and humbled, and overjoyed to hear the answers.
So January was a wash. I spent as much of it as I possibly could curled up in bed. I slept like a champion sleeper. I dragged my laptop into the blanket nest and worked on film festival stuff there. I read books in bed. I watched Netflix while working with yarn in bed. I looked at blogs in bed. I snuggled down with Man Cub and watched an entire season of Bob’s Burgers.* I got intimate with a friend’s (really good) poetry manuscript while wrapped in my orange quilt. Mostly, I got out of bed to handle emergencies involving heating oil** and houshold chores, to play WoW, to go to yoga on Thursdays,*** to grocery shop, and to cook dinner.
But it’s February (white rabbits, white rabbits!) and I’m ready to emerge. I started out the month right yesterday with a delightful breakfast with the afformentioned author friend, and then off to run an assortment of errands. Today I’m going to spend some quality time binding books. February is looking up.
But what I really want to talk about is sauce. Did I mention that I spent a bunch of time in bed reading blogs? One of my favorites is Smitten Kitchen. I’m prone to go fangirl over Deb Perelman – I’ve served her recipes at the family Thanksgiving table for the last three years and it’s gone brilliantly, and her cookbook is outstanding. Which is the only reason I attempted a sauce that I avoided because every description of it looked like clickbait.****
For serious – this sauce claims to be Something Very Special while being created from the mundane. A can of tomatoes, some butter, and an onion. There is no garlic, there is no basil, there is no stock or glug of red wine, nor is there any olive oil. You don’t even dice the onion. WTF. But Deb Perelman praised it, and that got my attention. She doesn’t publish clunkers.
And I have a new red pot. A Dutch oven, to be specific, but it’s a heavy-bottomed pot (emphasis on heavy – cast iron don’t fuck around, y’all) – Will Dearest gifted me with it after seeing me get wistful over a Le Creuset display last December. So curiosity piqued and red pot in hands, I went to it.
Holy. Carp. Something magical happened in the pot. So I made it again, this time with another brand of tomatoes. Slightly different, but again, freaking magic. When we went shopping yesterday, I bought no less than three cans of tomatoes and three boxes of pasta. The next two weeks hold serious promise. Here’s the scoop.
Three Ingredient Pasta Sauce – will feed four comfortably
(from Tomato Sauce With Onion and Butter on smittenkitchen.com)
1 28-oz can of whole plum tomatoes
5 Tbsp butter
1 medium onion, halved
I’m not dead! I was just resting, y’all.
No, that’s not even true (except for the not dead part) – I haven’t been resting. It’s been busy as all get out here since my last post in… omg, in May. Here’s the scoop: stuff is in motion. Here’s the work on the biggest stuff.
Rabbit Heart is off and running!
The 2014 Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival is rolling along like a boss. We just finished up judging on Wednesday night – winners in four categories have been picked, two categories have been scrapped (the youth category because there were no youth entries,* and the under-one-minute category because there weren’t enough suitable entries), as well as the overall winner, and I am both grateful for the judges and satisfied by their outcome. We have a venue and a date – 8pm Sunday, October 12th at Nick’s Bar, right here in Worcester. We have a gorgeous ticket design (if I don’t say so myself), and we’re ready to rock.
There’s still a lot to be done before the date – ticket sales (and emailing out of town folks who donated and are promised tickets ♥ ♥), curating of the show, setting up the programs, posters and tee-shirts, getting in touch with the finalists, making runner-up prizes, staffing the event, press releases, and of course, securing the popcorn possibilities – but I am deeply stoked to be digging in on it. I am downright thrilled to tell you that tickets should be on sale in the next couple weeks. WooT!
How grateful am I? I am so freaking grateful. This is a project that two years ago I was just dreaming about bringing to fruition. I was armchairing the hell out of it, and only vaguely entertaining the idea that I could get it into action. I was convinced that in order to get this event off the ground, I would have to get someone else to do it. And now here I am on the verge of it actually happening, and it’s because I got my butt in the game.
Something snapped in January. I just felt like I couldn’t wait anymore for a Right Moment or someone else to decide that they wanted to produce this event. And so I stuck my toe in. And check it out – I hooked a fish! Now it’s time to reel that baby in. The next couple of months are going to be filled with more work, and I tell you what, sister – I’m totally looking forward to it =) Read the rest of this entry »
Oh, vacation. As of 3 o’clock yesterday, both Will Dearest and I are on vacation for a week! To celebrate, after work yesterday we grabbed some grocery store lobsters (they’ll cook them for you – joy!) and I steamed up the corn from the farmers market*, and we had a family picnic on the living room floor – which was truly lovely.
While I’m wrapping my head around the idea of a week without waking at six and going in to work, the smallest cat is laying on top of a handled bag from Old Sturbridge Village. He has killed it two tiemz, even tho’ he was frightened of it when it first arrived because it smelled strongly of fudge. I’m impressed with his fortitude and bravery. I am planning to channel his osm spirit in the coming days.
I have some plans for the week: I’m thinking about taking everything out of the sun room and reorganizing it. We are going to paint Man Cub’s room at some point. He and Dearest Will have already taken advantage of the weekend and the good weather to build a (gorgeous!) fire pit in the yard, and we are all eagerly awaiting the cement’s curing to test drive it. I would very much like to get back into my yoga practice, which has derailed over the last month because of Busy. I want to pick up some big pots and some soil, and replant the english ivy that’s looking droopy. I’m looking forward to sleeping in a few days this week.
But first, I got things to do. We have a 2 o’clock slam practice that we’re looking at ending around six tonight. We have a slam team send-off tonight, as they’re to Boston for Poetry Slam Nationals on Tuesday, another practice tomorrow night, and laundry and sundried other odds and ends to handle before we all depart.** Also, I have to order oil and pay the bills sometime today. So I think after Thursday, it will be about really digging into the move-stuff-around-in-the-house business. And going to the movies with Man Cub. I’m looking forward to it, just bringing the focus back home for a little bit.
Ok, so I’ve been awol for a couple weeks, right? Here’s the scoop (anti-scoop, maybe?) – I’m working on a project that I can’t talk about just yet (it will be revealed over the weekend, and then I can talk about it), and it’s just killing me. I’ve actually been picking away at this for about a month now (ok, almost two months), and it’s all I want to talk about, but I can’t, so instead I haven’t been talking about much of anything. Except the day-to-day business of being around here, natch, and that doesn’t feel really blogworthy. But then I realized that, indeed, things are happening. So let me tell you about things that are happening (that I can talk about)!
Let’s start with the part where I got adopted by a slam team. Nono, I didn’t make it onto a slam team.* The 2013 Worcester Slam Team asked me to be their coach, and I couldn’t be more honored to work with such an osm group of poets. Watching them come together with their writing has been really great. Also, I would love these people, even if they weren’t writing super poems – they’re just really great people, and I love being in their presence. I feel a little gifted, really – two of them are housemates, and three of them are the ladies with whom I meet to write on Monday nights. It’s been lovely to reconnect to the slam while not having to actually compete – totally fun!
And I’ve been working on a scarf thing. So I saw this really sweet scarf on Pinterest, right? All made up of tiny little crocheted hexagons – so dainty! So pretty! And I was hoping for instructions at the pin’s website, but alas, it’s a picture of something that a blogger had just purchased. And I don’t know how to make hexagons. So I started to dig around to learn how to make hexagons, but in the middle of researching** I had this (somewhat related) idea that I could make a scarf from different sized circles.
And, whoa – surprise! This has been the Most Relaxing Thing Evar. See, I have issues with relaxing, across the board. I always feel like I should be doing something.*** And having something to do with my hands while Screwing Off On Purpose (what most people call Relaxing), calms that business down like no other thing. Guilty pleasure admission: I love to watch teevee and do needlework. So I’m making this scarf, and all of yesterday was spent in front of Hulu, watching episodes of comfortable junk-food teevee like Merlin, and crocheting circles. I’m about half way to Scarf, and plan on showing it off like whoa when it’s all done.
A quick check-in while I have time and am near the computer – I’ve missed you over the last few weeks, dear readers!
I’ll start by telling you that I may have found the most perfect, and most perfectly simple, summer dessert: red delicious apple slices with fresh lime juice squeezed over them.* Just slice up the apples (about twelve slices per apple), and squeeze half a lime over it for each whole apple (1 apple : 1/2 lime). The lime juice perfectly perfumes and adds a lovely tartness to the sweet red delicious apples, not to mention, keeps them from turning brown. Chill in the fridge and voila, snack.** So easy, right?
Also, I’ll tell you that it’s been a bit zooey here with the change in the weather and the change in jobs. Freelance and also some art that I’d had to put off digging into full-force for a little while took over most of my free time for a few weeks,*** and any spare time has been spent putting the garden together.
Scattered – I’ve been truly scattered this last two weeks. Some of it is that Jack’s passing, and the anniversaries of other friends who have passed has me distracted (and, sister, I am distracted), but that’s just part of it. It isn’t that things aren’t happening, or that there’s been too much happening, even; I’ve just been having a tough time of organizing what it all is. Welcome to my January – I’m pretty sure that January and February are like this every year, to be completely honest.
So! Random thoughts, no particular order:
Where have you been all my life? How could I have not known about you until I’m properly in my forties? Holy carp, chard! I want to eat you and eat you and eat you. I want to eat you with rice and tuna, I want to eat you in soup. I want to eat you gently wilted with garlic and olive oil. I want to chop up your delightful rainbow-colored stems and put them into my salad. Oh, chard, I adore you!
So we had soup last night. Lentil soup with sausage, chard and garlic, to be precise (Oh, Smitten Kitchen, I adore you!) and it called for this new vegetable. It’s not often I run into a vegetable that I haven’t tried at some point, so I was a wee bit excited in the produce aisle, I’ll admit. I set up the soup and ribboned up the chard to be ready for the last few minutes of cooking, and then while stirring said soup, decided to sample the chard and see what’s up. I called Dearest Will in to join me and my puzzled expression. He took a taste and promptly brought his own puzzled expression to the party. We couldn’t figure this stuff out – there are flavors of bok choy, beets, and citrus in there, alongside a slight astringency reminiscent of spinach, and a delightful crunch. Love. I went back for seconds on the soup because the soup was delicious, and the chard made that happen. So, um, chard may be my new favorite vegetable.
I’m trying.* Clearly, I am a slow learner. At least I’ve set up a nice space to focus.**
I will admit, it’s been a little hard to blog lately. Every time I open up the page, there’s Serge staring back at me – I miss him terribly, and it’s a little heartbreaking to look at him there in that picture. But also, it’s been everything else too. I’ve been really sad about what’s going on in the world this month, in a hard-to-bear-up kind of way. So in a proactive move toward self-preservation, I’ve decided that I cannot listen to the news for any kind of extended period anymore. I used to come into work in the morning and turn on NPR to keep me entertained while I pushed around the paperwork, but lately that only leads to soggy paperwork. I’m limiting that business to while I’m driving – which means half an hour a day at most.
Which, I think, is helping. But more than the moratorium on news shows, so is the little stuff that just involves physical doing: getting on the yoga mat for twenty minutes every day, making things with my hands, cooking, cleaning
all the things stuff. And trying new things. New things keep my head in the good-space game as much as the physicality of making stuff is soothing by dint of keeping my hands busy. So here’s what I’ve been up to:
For my birthday a couple weeks ago I was gifted with a bookstore gift certificate, so I went kinda hog wild in there – after grabbing some sweet sweet Ursula K LeGuin paperbacks* I headed over to the crafting section and pored over the needlework books. I picked one out for its lovely pictures, only to find out at home that the pictures weren’t terribly detailed, and some of the descriptions of stitches were off. Luckily, I am privileged with internet access, and so YouTube, and dude, I learned some really cool stuff! Look at this pretty thing:
It’s called a broomstick stitch,** and it’s crochet, but it also requires a knitting needle. A huge knitting needle – size 50! So basically, you make loops and hold them on the knitting needle, and then you go back at the end of the line and single crochet them together in groups. I’m kind of in love with this – so far I’ve made two Christmas gift scarves, and a smallish scarf for myself.*** I plan on making a few more for the Etsy shop in the coming weeks.
Also, over the weekend I got busy with bread. Last year (the year before, maybe?) I tried to make a challah, and was unimpressed with the recipe – there were, like, a dozen egg yolks in there, the dough gummed up my stand mixer in a terrifying way, and the finished product was meh with a side of dry. The only redeeming bit was that it made marvelous french toast after everything was said and done. So I’ve been hesitant to make another one. But then the cookbook showed up. Omigod, the cookbook. For Hanukkah, Will Dearest got me a copy of the Smitten Kitchen Cookbook , and, seriously Sister, it’s ON. Deb Perelman is one of my all-time favorite bloggers, and I cook a lot from her website, so this book has me head over heels.
Read the rest of this entry »
Do you know about Doublebunny Press? I’m not actually sure if I’ve ever mentioned it here, to be honest >.>
Doublebunny is a little bitty press that I run, doing some design work and book and cd covers*. For the most part, it’s a layout service, and I do some chapbook and poster work here and there, but there’s also my favorite part of the press, the annual winter holidays card. You might have noticed I’ve been light on posting – I’ve been working hard on this year’s cards!
Doublebunny Press is pleased to offer our limited edition 2012 Winter Holiday Card, with collage work by Sou MacMillan! (Click the image to see it in better detail). I’ll be making less than 500, but they’re a lovely kind of limited edition: 5″x6.5, and printed in glossy ink on heavy paper. With a matching envelope, natch. They can be purchased them in packs of 20 from Apple Batiks’ Etsy store. The link for ordering is right here =)
PO Box 3094
Worcester, MA 01613
Feel free to poke around the Doublebunny Press site – there’s all sorts of fun things in there, including a big page of collage illustrations. The store isn’t yet up and running, because I’m trying to decide if it’s going to be easier to just seel prints in the Apple Batiks Etsy shop, start a Doublebunny Etsy, or run the Paypal buttons right into the site. As soon as I get a handle on that, um, I’m let everyone know =)
*And used to put out a nifty poetry magazine through, called Omnivore.
When I cannot hold my shit together, which has been known to happen a time or two, I turn into an escapist like whoa. I read books that take place on other planets. I cook things I don’t generally cook. I buy new first person shooter videogames or binge on MI-5 episodes. I watch Serenity for the umpteenth time and then follow that business up with the whole Firefly series over the course of a week. I listen to the score from The Elder Scrolls IV Morrowind while I do anything that actually has to get done. I go through my file folder of torn-out articles about Iceland and get daffy over the fantasy that I will one day actually have a passport* and go there.
I totally collect pictures of places. And when I get stressed out, I flip through them. Hello, Pinterest. This is where I go at least twice a day during the working day – feel free to browse and sigh too. For example: