baking day

Today I’m baking bread and cookies. I got up early and made the bread dough before work and did the kneading on my lunch break – good timing cos I had a bastard customer right before I went to lunch. He made me so angry that my hands were literally shaking. I just wanted to scream! Instead I took deep breaths and helped the customer – and then came home and abused my bread. The bread looks OK – I haven’t tried it yet – but it is making my kitchen smell remarkable.

State of the Union address tonight. President Bush is saying good things – but will there be follow-through?

I spent today reading Another Girl at Play. It is such an amazing site – but also somewhat depressing for someone like me, wanting to follow her dreams but not knowing what they are – dying to live a creative life but stuck in the routines of a job that I don’t dislike but that systematically and thoroughly stifles the creative urge. Go there. Read the stories. They’re amazing. You will feel better about your dreams – and maybe, just maybe, you’ll get that glimmer of hope that’s needed to break out.

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book club thoughts

I started rereading the book; yesterday and so far have finished chapter one – I really enjoyed reading about her “places.” I suppose quotation marks aren’t necessary – but I wanted to put an emphasis on place since she certainly seems to. I think it’s really interesting how place affects writers so differently. In many of Virginia Woolf’s books, for example, London is alive and is as much a character as Clarissa Dalloway or Orlando or any of the Ramsays. Place is of extreme importance to Vita Sackville-West – her most acclaimed piece was basically a love song for Knole, her family’s ancient estate – she describes her separation from Knole in physical terms, as if the land were her mother and her ejection from it her birth. It’s amazing to read. Crosswicks in the same sense becomes Madeleine’s adulthood – it seems to encompass all that she values in her family and her marriage – it is old, comfortably old, ever-changing, ever-welcoming, bustling with life and happiness and tears and all those things that make life worth living.

I guess I think of my family home in the same way – my family home that is now in danger of sale. For those of you who haven’t heard, my parents’ property has been annexed into the city of Rockford, the annexation bringing with it few benefits except the MUCH higher city tax rate. I only lived in the house for a year – but I have so many memories tied to that place – I can understand Madeleine’s loving reverence for her home.

Some thinking on banned books:
http://www.sitehouse.net/jamesbow/000039.shtml;

The same guy has a really quite erudite discussion of the Philip Pullman Dark Materials Trilogy that goes well with yesterday’s article.

Going to Champaign tomorrow. I was supposed to go tonight but accomplished NOTHING this morning before work, including packing – well, I guess I did make my spinach dip. I got to work at 9:30 and promptly panicked cos I couldn’t remember if I turned off the stove – so I begged my boss to let me run home and check, thus wasting half my break. Of course the range was off. Grr. So instead of having my lunch break to pack and do dishes and all that, I didn’t even have time to leave work. Boo. So instead of going down tonight, I’m going down tomorrow.

“Chapter Four: Turkish Delight”

What do you think of this article? A Labour of Loathing Let me know. I deeply love Narnia – it’s an essential part of my childhood – and I am surprised and disappointed to see it so under attack. At the same time, I haven’t (to my eternal shame!) read the His Dark Materials trilogy, so I don’t feel like I can really comment without being biased. Really, I’d like to know what you think.

Not v. itchy today – finally. The steroids and the antihistamines – plus all the water I’ve been trying to drink – must have done the trick. Too bad the spots really haven’t faded. I might have to go to a dermatologist for that – boo.

Today has been just about the longest day I can remember. We had a staff meeting – most of which was old hat for me – but that meant that we were rotated out in groups of 5 over a period of about five hours – so lunch hours were delayed and everything was just all messed up. Jen didn’t get to go to lunch until almost 3:30. Ridiculous. I made an executive decision and went to lunch at my normal time (2:00pm), figuring that I hadn’t been on the phone at all so far so my absence probably wouldn’t matter much. I was right.

Tomorrow is payday. Is there any feeling better in the world than a full checkbook and a weekend ahead of you?

day four

Still itching. Still spotty. I went to my doctor on Monday and they gave me a steroid shot and Zyrtec and I’m feeling a little less itchy – though it’s still pretty bad. I feel absolutely hideous. At least Pop assures me that when the spots fade (whenever that is) I’ll have a tan! Not much consolation for the party I’m going to this weekend – but it’s something, I guess.

Tonight we made The Naked Chef’s Tempura – it was good, but was missing something. Not sure what. Any suggestions?

itchy

I’m doing a little bouncy in-my-chair dance to “Love You Madly.” It involves moving my arms and shoulders up and down and wiggling and bobbing my head a little. It’s pretty fab. So picture me in my pajama pants and big grey sweater doing this little dance and trying not to itch.

Itch. That’s right. Somehow I woke up this morning covered in itchy red bumps. It’s awful! I took a shower and retreated to my bed, where I slept in (what I thought was) a somewhat fevered haze, hallucinating all kinds of weird things – doorbells, N coming home, etc. I then woke up with a craving for carrots and chocolate. Weird. I’m about one step away from asking N to lather me up in calamine lotion and diving into an oatmeal bath. If I’m still itching tomorrow, I’m heading (back) to Immediate Care to give that damned doctor a piece of my mind – the reigning spot theory has to do with me having an allergic reaction to my antibiotic – I wonder if that would count as a check-back? Then I wouldn’t have to pay another co-pay! “Yes, my doctor is a halfwit peabrain and he gave me itchy red spots. I’d like to see him again.” Perhaps then he would call me a retarded monkey? I don’t care as long as these spots go away.

Knitting is fun! She re-taught me Friday night and I’ve been hard at work since – well, when I haven’t been at work or in a fevered haze or itching my spots. My cats are quite mesmerized with the clicking needles – they haven’t really noticed the looong trail of yarn, so I suppose I should count my blessings. 🙂 I have about three inches of green! Watch out – it’s homemade Christmas present year!

There was a big old war protest out on State Street yesterday! If I wasn’t working and had a fabbo sign, I would have deffo joined them – instead I drove by while escaping work for five minutes to get food. I was clapping and cheering in my car and almost crying – though I’m not sure why. I guess I’m just proud and pleased that there are people out there who see how WRONG what we’re doing is and that have the guts to stand up and say something. Heidi and I have been talking about this – she has cousins and LOADS of other family in Egypt and elsewhere in the Middle East who stand to be basically fucked if war breaks out. I just really feel that we’re making a mistake by going to war without attempting a peaceful resolution. Funny that we can talk and talk and talk with North Korea – WHO HAS NUCLEAR WARHEADS – but can only bomb Iraq.

no more birthday

I’m always bummed when my birthday is over. There’s just no way around it. However N did say that I can be a fairy princess on my birthday. Hooray! Too bad I have to wait 364 days to be a princess again.

The Hours is STILL not in Rockford. STILL. It looks like I might be driving in to Schaumburg on my day off on Monday to go see it at Woodfield. How ridiculous is that?

Eva’s here tonight. I hope it’s a wonderful night. I’m going to learn to knit.

my birthday

la la la it’s my birthday and i’m a super diva and katye told me to jump up and down and get in some trouble so i’m doing so. well, not jumping right now cos i’m typing – but i’m in my circus tent of a desk and am having just a really great day. n says i can’t be a fairy princess but i say it’s my birthday and i can do anything. hooray for birthdays!