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Chau and B.J.'s notes from Space City

Archive for December, 2010

I’m squeezing in some cooking time during this break, because I need a lot of practice! Lately, I’ve been going to Orangette for recipes and each dish I’ve tried has been a keeper. Last night we made Pasta with Hashed Brussels Sprouts and Pine Nuts, using whole wheat pasta and adding minced garlic at the end. This morning, I made a third batch of the chocolate chip cookies, but I finally got the recipe right. The previous two times, I mixed teaspoons with tablespoons so there was more salt + baking soda + baking powder. (Can’t even claim that as a rookie mistake.) Although the other batches tasted pretty good, these cookies were so much better with just the right amount of crisp around the edges.

It had a slow start, but the holiday spirit is beginning to spread. On my first couple of days off I’ve baked cookies, tuned into the Christmas station while driving, wrapped presents, and set up a little winter scene. Now if only Houston could get a cold front to come through…

Other things I’ve enjoyed:

  1. Dinner with friends at the Broken Spoke Cafe
  2. Reading this article about shoes in the NYT (hallelujah!)
  3. Olly Moss’ Star Wars posters

It’s been a long week, but I’m looking forward to getting some rest before returning to school. In between work, commutes, and all the busy stuff we’ve found some time to visit Igby (btw, she’s not that obedient: her eyes are fixed on my cookie), finally put up curtains and organize our place, indulge in yummy chocolate chip pancakes from Max’s Wine Dive, get hooked on Gossip Girl (I heart Blair), and drink lots of sparkling cider!

Pictures from a month ago: Spending time in South Bend, hanging out and collaborating with the Keatings, admiring Geoff’s handmade furniture, and filling up on fish and chips and more delicious Irish food at Fiddler’s Hearth. Good times.

It took a while, but I finally finished shooting the film from the disposable. I didn’t realize so many stores stopped processing film, so it took a few stops before finding a place. But after cleaning and trying to get the levels right on this roll and the last, I think Wolf’s Camera is the only place I’ve been happy with. Maybe when this new year begins I can start saving up for a digital camera or a film/developing fund.

One more week until Christmas break. (yippee) I’m planning on making a few handmade presents for some of my family this year.

My sister Tien made us over 1000 of these paper cranes for our wedding present, and I’m still blown away at how tiny and thoughtful they are. I hope time and creativity will be on my side.

I got stuck in a funk for most of the weekend. A staring-at-the-ceiling funk. A why am I in a funk, I don’t know, get your butt out of bed funk. Thankfully it began to clear up towards the end. Walking around, organizing the room, baking, and a late-night block printing session with B while the cookies cooled worked as a nice distraction. And we cleared out a part of the room for me to work in, so hopefully I can stay on top on all the to-dos much better.

My first formal observation is tomorrow. I’m hoping to kick this week’s butt.

Thank you, internet.

  1. Seeing old and new work on The Heads of State’s new website. They only get better and better.
  2. Being inspired by Patrick Morgan’s illustrations. This hand drawn/digital ad for Reiss is my favorite.
  3. Watching this holiday store fill up with great gifts. Opens tomorrow.
  4. Driving to the store soon after reading the Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe on Orangette.
  5. Reading Sweet Fine Day daily. Great writing, pictures, and sometimes a video that’ll melt your heart.