Monday, September 23, 2013

Friday, September 20, 2013

Ice Cream Wrapped in Sugar and Love: Your Perfect Korra Party Food

Remember when I did my hair like this?

I also made mochi ice cream to celebrate the release of Legend of Korra Book 2. And it turned out very well.

We inadvertently discovered the perfect ice cream for mochi. BYU catering makes this weird lemonade-like drink called "Y Sparkle." In the same odd tradition, the creamery has sparkle sherbet. It's tangy and intense, and when you get to about the third lick it reaches out and whips itself around your tongue and squeezes like a python. In a good way. And I'm not actually kidding at all. That's what it feels like.

Snakes aside, it is the perfect tangy complement to the sweet mochi dough. The mochi also tones down the strangling action.

I've also finally found a good recipe for mochi. Check out these two links. The first is for the converted measurements, and the second is for the actual recipe.

Making mochi ice cream was much easier than I thought, and it's a satisfying process involving gooey sticky dough.

And of course, you can use any ice cream you like. (But really, trust me on the sparkle sherbet.) The other ingredients are mostly easy to come by. They sell sweet rice flour/powder in most speciality food stores AND usually in the Asian section of your local grocery store. I found it at Macey's the other day. I don't remember it being particularly expensive, and one box is enough to make mochi forever. Almost. Look for a box like this.

It is the perfect treat for celebrating today's Legend of Korra episode. Flameo, Hotman. Flameo.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

My Grandfather's Garden: Tomato Soup

The latest additions to my grandfather's garden are the two mourning doves. The funny part is they've always been around. At my parent's home, I've been woken up by their soft but unmistakable coo for as long as I can remember.

But now my grandfather has trained them with food. He calls out and shakes the box of seed. They land on the stand he built to keep them safe from my mother's cats. If he's late for dinner, they scope the neighborhood looking for him and gently swoop over his bald head when they find him across the street helping with someone's yard work.

The garden has changed but the tomatoes are just the same. Nothing makes better soup than the tomatoes my grandfather grows.

Monday, September 16, 2013

I Interrupt my Previous Post to Say: Mideau. Parlour Hawk. One Night. One Stage

When I first met Spencer Harrison, he thought I was breaking into his house.

I wasn't. I swear.

I was coming over to study with his roommate, who told me to walk in and wait while he went to pull his car out of a ditch. True story, including the part about the ditch.

Now, Spencer, former bassist of Fictionist, has returned to the Provo music scene with Libbie Linton and a great new project: Mideau.

Their album release show last Friday SOLD OUT. As did the album release show for Parlor Hawk! So tonight, you have the chance to see TWO sell-out bands put on one great show at 8 p.m. at Velour Music Gallery (an all-ages venue and wellspring of knock-out music [see: Imagine Dragons, Joshua James, etc.]) in Provo (135 N. University Ave.)

I love seeing good people make great things, and even more so, I love when everyone else sees it too.

Friday, September 13, 2013

In Case Your Friday Is Not Fantastic Enough

This is my new favorite Onion article of all time. I laughed at every word. Please enjoy.,33751/?ref=auto

Also, tonight is the premiere of Legend of Korra Book 2! And you can watch all of Book 1 on! Get excited!

We're celebrating with mochi ice cream.

Oh, and I'm wearing my hair like this all day.

It might just be the most comfortable hairstyle ever. Seriously, kids . . .

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

One Great Truth I'm Learning from Unemployment

Sadly, I did not get one of the jobs I was excited about because I was slow in turning in my application and the position had already been filled.

This is prime material for self-loathing and regret.

Before I had the chance to get deep into the loathing though, Super told me this:

"You don't have to beat yourself up about things in order to do better."

Until now, I don't think I'd ever really thought that the loathing was optional to progress. In some sense, doesn't that change everything?

Monday, September 9, 2013

Sleep Talking and Other Stories

After five months of marriage, I'm still surprised by how much it feels like a sleepover—the kinds my best friends and I had when we were kids. I think it feels like that because of the conversations we have.

By 11 p.m., I'm in one of two states: my jokes are getting more ridiculous and I'm cracking myself up or I'm so tired I've gotten weepy. Either way, Super has to get me to stop talking so I'll sleep. In this respect, I most resemble a little kid who never wants to go to bed and needs to make one more trip to the bathroom. We've switched sides of the bed, because the closets in the dark fuel my nightmares.

In the morning, we discuss who won the struggle for the blankets, who took more than their half of the bed, who actually slept, who was awake all night, and who said the most ridiculous thing in their sleep—the most famous of them being when I asked Jacob, "You san't cleep?"

The other morning I woke up and realized my husband was—both literally and figuratively—the brightest thing in the room. I know this because I've had a head cold, and I opened my eyes searching for something bright enough to trigger a sneeze. And I saw him, said nothing, and happily recited to myself the words of Thomas Merton:

"There is no way of telling people they are all walking around shining like the sun."

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Help Me, Honda! Save the Drive-In Movie!

I think it had something to do with my head cold, but when I stumbled upon Honda's Save the Drive In project I got all weepy.

I love drive-in movies. There's one in Mount Pleasant (the Basin Drive In), which Super and I are quite taken with. It's only an hour drive alongside sweeping landscapes to movie perfection. The family friendly, communal gathering is unlike any other. And it's cheaper than seeing a movie in the normal theater (in most cases), which moves the drive in high on our list. Even in our little car, it's a lovely set up.

In a few days, drive in theaters who have not switched to digital projectors will be shut down. It costs about $80,000 to convert, and that's far more than most of these theaters have. By voting in the Save the Drive In project, you can help at least one theatre stay open. Check out the video below, and then go to today to vote and find out more about what you can do.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

The Necessity of Cheerleaders

When I think of cheerleaders, I think of a girl from my high school I didn’t know very well and the day she broke her nose. During a cheer practice in the gym, she fell when someone was supposed to catch her, shattering the tiny bones in her face, and spilling a lot of blood on the wood floor—according to whoever passed the story along to me in the hallway between class. I felt so bad for her and even worse for the person who didn’t catch her.

Ironic how that’s the image that comes to mind. Not pompoms or perky ponytails. Just someone else’s pain and the obvious truth that my body and I were never meant to do backflips. Nope. I am no acrobat. (I left that up to my best friend, who was such a gymnast that the boys at school called her Xena, after the one and only warrior princess.)

But I think I’m a great cheerleader. I decided that after my last shift at the Family Support and Treatment Center, where I work as a house parent in the crisis nursery.

When the other kids realized I’m too slow to make tag fun, they went inside leaving Nate (name changed) and I out on the playground. Though Nate doesn’t really notice, I’ve known him since he was four. Our friendship goes back to my early days of volunteering in the nursery. Now he’s six, and I still don’t know much about his past other than that he was adopted out of the system. This kind of info wasn’t really important to me though when I sat down on the grass, and he picked up a basketball.

I don’t think he made a shot until about the fifth try. But when he did, I clapped and shouted, and Nate smiled in the way he always does: with more sweetness than you can believe. A few more failed attempts, and then point number two. I repeated the cheering, and he repeated the smile. And on we went like that. I thought he’d get bored sometime soon, but when he had made the eighteenth basket, I reminded him that he was almost to twenty. He realized how close he was, “Oh yeah! Eighteen, nineteen, twenty!” Soon he scored that nineteen and the twenty, and I cheered and clapped each victory. All the way to thirty-one.

He declared a time-out and sat down on my patch of grass to discuss the events. He was very satisfied with the score. I was mostly surprised by it. Nate has always been resilient and patient, so I take no credit for that. But I was astounded that a little cheering kept him going for so long. Having someone tick off the victories and minimize the mistakes turned a few baskets into thirty-one.

In the haze of summer shade and the quiet of a nearly empty playground, I realized I am great at this cheerleading thing. It’s less messy than I realized, and I think I could do it forever.

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