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So the 'rents and I went out to Mossy Creek Barnyard Festival this past weekend, and that was actually kind of fun. We went Sunday afternoon, because Sunday dinner--for those of you not keeping track of the minutiae in my family, my maternal grandmother used to always handle Sunday dinner for us, and now it's my mom's job as only girl of four, now three with my oldest uncle deceased--was in the slow cooker, and the weather was gorgeous. Didn't buy much, but I bought some wooden spoons (and oddly enough none of the three is actually a spoon) from one of the guys that frequents the festival.

Which is good, because they're all hardwoods and made from recent deadfalls in his/our area and are well-made and hand-turned and all that stuff. I got one really long-handled spatula made of oak, and an avocado spoon made out of what I think is light cherry, but it doesn't have the wood type burned into the handle like his stuff usually does. The other thing is mostly for my mom, and it's called a roux spoon, though it's not technically a spoon nor do we make a lot of stuff that calls for roux. It's really a spatula with a very sharply cut angle on the flat end, good for scraping the fond off the bottoms of pans--something which is deliciously conducive to all the flavors in pan sauces and gravy and stuff, as well as actually getting the pan cleaned up before washing it. That one is a very pretty cherrywood and the best thing about all of them is that they only need to be cleaned with soap and hot water and very lightly oiled once or twice a year. Among the other things I saw at the festival were a wonderful local soap company that does light scents which do wash off in the shower, which is a delightful thing since I like smelling pretty but also don't want to upset all the allergies of the household; they had a muscadine-scented soap which I almost bought but didn't. There was a lady who did handmade lace-weight yarn and had her own custom-made spinning wheel there, and it looked so cool that I had to stop and talk about it, and take a picture. I take a lot of cell phone pictures, and at fairs and festivals and conventions and things I try to ask first, but still a lot of people say it's A-okay. The rest were a whole lot of business cards and a guy knapping flint who let me take a picture of a pretty red knife. (It's a bad angle, but the blade was about half again as long as my middle finger, so...five inches maybe?)

I've been making dinner for the past couple nights, and will be making for the next couple more; Sunday night was slow-cooker pork ragout, which was amazing, and last night was mini cheeseburger pies that you make in a muffin pan, both served with green salad. Tonight I'm getting adventurous and doing chicken Florentine in a way that doesn't really have a recipe. I'm hopeful for how it turns out since the idea seems easy enough, but we all know how things that start like that go. My basic idea is to lightly panko-coat chicken breast strips, and bake them until crispy, then top with spinach and artichoke dip and cheese and broil them to make it hot and bubbly, and serve with roasted tomatoes and orzo with some light kind of oil/vinegar dressing, or maybe a very light red sauce. I dunno yet. That with a green salad seems like a pretty excellent dinner on a Tuesday to me, and it should be pretty easy since I have all day to do the pre-assembly and cleaning of the kitchen. Since I cook I usually don't handle cleanup but the parents neglected it last night and I hate walking through there with stuff all over hell and creation.

I'm also taking a bit of a break from the candymaking since it kind of wore me out and there's only so much sweet stuff I can subject my family to in good conscience. I've tried giving stuff to my neighbors before, but I thought in light of it almost being Halloween I'd wait until like...November or December when it's more traditionally acceptable to just leave stuff on someone else's doorstep; and it's also more feasible temperature-wise here in Georgia.

The outfit on Sunday did work pretty well; I looked really cute, according to the guy who sits behind me in the choir loft and sings bass and might play stuff with me when or if I get to do instrumentals. Ryan is kind of a doll and I adore him and his sense of humor, so it was great validation to hear him say I looked really pretty. I'm still missing a particular friend of mine who's still at boot camp and will be for the next eight weeks; he's going to have a spectacular christmas party when he comes home, but I'm kind of worried that he won't be the same guy, because boot camp changes you in ways nobody expects. But that's a worry for another day, I suppose.
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I've been trying to feel good today. It was the beginning of Shark Week, which sucks to begin with but aside fro a couple hours of cramping it's been okay; I take birth control pills for this reason, because I only get four Weeks a year and I can deal with that. Theoretically I can skip them and not have them at all, but sometimes I spot through and that just kills my day, because hello unexpected wardrobe malfunctions, how are you doing?

That said, because I feel kind of 'ehhhhh' already, and I didn't want to showcase that in my look--it's a thing, I hate looking like I feel awful, more on that later--I put together what I think is a super cute outfit for church. Technically I can show up in whatever the hell I want to since I'm under a full-length long-sleeved choir robe (black cassock, while alb) the entire service, but since I also get there like an hour early I like to dress nice and it helps me feel better about being there. I sing alto, which doesn't have a whole lot of 'oomph' to it for most people not musicians; we don't sing the melody an awful lot, we're not pitched for Disney Princess songs, et cetera. (In point of fact I haven't been able to sing any Princess songs in their written key since I was twelve. The first one I can remember singing in the set key since my voice dropped was Ursula. This should tell you a lot about my range and timbre.) And the sopranos at my church...are interesting. They're split pretty evenly half-and-half between young women my age who *ALL* go to a private university, or older women my grandmother's age who've known me since I was literally born.

There's also about thirteen of them, and four altos. Five on a good day.

So when one of them makes snarky comments at me--and she does on a regular basis, I try to ignore it. But that's easier said than done and a lot of what she makes comments on is that I don't dress like she does, or what she deems fashionably. (I wasn't aware that black pants and heels and a blouse weren't fashionable anymore, but then I miss that sometimes.) So I'm kind of better armed to capital-I Ignore when I feel like I look good, which makes sense. I spent a bit of time contemplating what to wear, since it's supposed to be overcast and kind of fall-like for Georgia, and decided on pants.

Grey trouser pants. My favorite. They fit well, they're comfy, they're not too low-rise or high-waist and they don't gap in the back. I have a white dress shirt that's wonderful because it's half spandex and zips up the front--all the fastenings are zippers, which makes it fun to have a relatively narrow waist and D cup boobs, because hello again, wardrobe malfunctions. And at church it's never a good idea to flash people. Especially not at *my* church, because I'm Episcopalian and we're routinely about as happy as someone who's been force-fed a live trout. I wish I was joking. (You know that line from Dogma about how Catholics don't celebrate their faith, they mourn it? It totally goes for us too, we just speak less Latin.) So there's the pants, and the shirt. And then there's this sleeveless plaid jumper-overshirt-thing that my parents got me last Christmas that I love, but have been really conflicted over wearing. It's black, which I'm trying to get away from, and also plaid, which I've never worn before.

But. It looks really really cute. And though the whole outfit is undeniably masculine, everything's made for women so it's not really...boxy, I suppose? I mean, if my mother were talking here--and she has no grasp of the fact that I'm bisexual--she'd say it doesn't look dyke-ish. I personally take offense at that term for a whole lot of reasons, but you get what I'm trying to say here, hopefully. I'm only wearing hoops and a cross, but it's a big multicolored gemstone cross I got when I turned 21 from my grandmother, because in my mind I can never have too many crosses, since they're a nice jewelry piece and they're not in anyone's face and it saves me from having to explain that yes I go to church and no I'm not an SBC member and yadda yadda yadda. (There's a lot of that around here. Some cities, your reputation is dependent on where your daddy works or where your mama's family went to school or what after school thing your kid is in; here, it's where you go to church. Inexplicable, but then we are in Georgia.)

My only still-undecided option is shoes. I love shoes. I really do. I can get wild with my shoes in ways I cannot with clothes, and still be practical. I can either wear black slingbacks that're kind of low but have a cute 1940's vibe to them with the patent leather and knots on the toes, or I can wear by 5-inch black stiletto oxfords. These shoes, man. They're Fioni, and so were like 20 dollars at payless and I love that price, plus they make me super tall--like I'm not already; these shoes make me 6'3"--and that's icing on my cake. (Mmmm, cake.)

The only problem is the stairs at church. And if I can't walk quietly up the stairs, I just feel awful. I get comments from everyone about how clompy I am and how if I lost weight it'd be easier and all that sort of shit that makes no sense but that people who mean well say anyway. I hope to have this problem--the shoe one, anyway--resolved by tomorrow morning; the rest of it may take longer. But that's okay, I have time. Time is on my side. There should be more of these horrible metaphors, but I'm kinda running out. Eh.

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Alice Bluebonnet Seeks Johnnie Fedora

June 2015

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