11–17 of 17 entries from the month of: October 2010

Agave

October 9th

Agave

Agave

Agave

Agave

I love this juxtaposition of tender and ferocious.

~K

Posted in
Arizona, Photography
Comments (2)

Refill

October 8th

Not for long

Bouey!

Kayak

Great advertising

Dawn

Get out of the way, construction dude

Good news — as of this morning at 7:01 am, Tempe Town Lake is being refilled. Remember when one of the bladders burst earlier this summer? After watching the workers during countless runs around the lake over the last few months, they filled the final bladder this morning.

The Mayor + his council

Media feast

The mayor and his council thoroughly enjoyed the moment in the spotlight — ready to talk about how the city’s lake is the second most visited landmark in Arizona.  Of course I couldn’t wait to ask about the fish. When would they be returned?

It will take two weeks

Gush!

It will take two weeks

I was told — without a trace of humor — that the “utility fish and Israeli carp would be installed later this month.” Utility fish and Israeli carp? This sounds like a Simpson’s episode where a lake of fish wearing yarmulkes, Swiss army knives and cargo pants take over. Should make future swimming events a bit more interesting.

~K

Posted in
Arizona, Journal
Comments (5)

For the Honor of Grayskull!

October 7th

Hummus!

Hummus!

Finny and I had one of those conversations yesterday that made me realize we think we are domestically invincible. After her trip to Germany, she’s bound and determined to master making great homemade pretzels. Logically, I suggested these would be an excellent gift alongside a jar of homemade jam. She thought, “why not make mustard?” Never mind this would require growing mustard seed and the such.

She’s Finny. She can do anything, including coaxing watermelons into more convenient shapes.*

Thankfully, she empowers her friends to think alike. This week I was out to lunch with a coworker who ordered a sandwich that included both hummus and pesto. He loves both and was so happy. When I mentioned these are both incredibly simple to make at home, he looked at me like I’d just emerged from my pioneering commune to forage at the same lunch spot.

Dude. Do it yourself? Kinda all the rage. (Plus with food, it tastes better!)

I have to believe Finny and I were both influenced by a “woman” who turns 25 today: She-Ra — He-Man’s sister. I watched many an episode and had the dolls. I’m including her in the series of strong female fictional characters who nurtured my strong-willed, intelligent, overly ambitious coven of girlfriends. Other characters include: Nancy Drew, the Babysitter Club girls (entrepreneurs), Jem** and the Holograms, etc.

What characters shaped the way you looked at life?

~K

*(She’s magic. Every girl needs magic girlfriends.)

** Including magical girlfriends who correct my spelling.

Posted in
Journal
Comments (8)

Waves

October 5th

Octavio

Photo by Octavio Heredia

For those who’ve purchased a copy of the first (or second) edition of “Under the Same Moon,” you’ve quietly and politely noticed many editing errors. Here’s the thing — I’m not perfect. I’m far from it. So far that I quite obviously jumped the gun (even after 8 years) and published a novel with a lot of hoopla and not enough copy editing. My friends did an excellent job of catching so many other errors before it went to print. I’d read my worn computer paper copy about 10 gazillion times. When I received my first bound copy back as a proof, the type was too small to read thoroughly.

I should have read more thoroughly.

Should have, could have, would have. These are words burdened with regret that simply will not ruin publishing my first novel. Even a novel with errors.

Reading a bad review a couple weeks ago resulted in more than a few tears. I was filled with regret for sharing such a tender and vulnerable piece of my happiness — of who I am — with someone who couldn’t relate. I am so wildly embarrassed.

Reading the good reviews fills my sails; my ego is quickly convinced the next call will be Oprah’s scheduling producer. It’s a bell curve of emotion, with sincere rage and unhappiness at one end and Prom Queen Pulitzer Prize Winner at the other.  I wouldn’t have it be any different — even the sucky part of the wave that holds you under just long enough to sting your brain with salt water before throwing you back on to the hard beach.

I should have paid a professional editor to look at the copy. I could have asked another publisher to take a look at it before going at it alone with self-publishing. I would have loved to have had professional help at any point in this process.

So, that wave has spit me back on the beach — a place where I continue to write, read and research. I’m wearing sunscreen to protect my thin skin,  shades to keep the good reviews from over-saturating the ego, and flip flops as a reminder this is all supposed to be fun.

~K

Posted in
Journal, Novel
Comments (17)

Pouch

October 4th

J

Pouch for J

C

C

C

I’ve got gobs of sewing I should be doing — finishing a wedding quilt, my Finny/Donk sewing adventure project for the month, birthday gifts — and then there is what I have been sewing: fun, whimsical gifts like these. It’s like having a bowl of ice cream when there is still broccoli on your plate.

~K

Posted in
handmade
Comments (3)

October Gardening in Phoenix

October 3rd

S+J's visit  -- Desert Botanical Gardens

So, you want to plant a garden but live in the great Sonoran desert. Don’t know where to start and/or don’t want to eat grilled javelina with prickly pear sauce? (You should really give prickly pear another shot. It’s delicious! Skip the javelina. They are in the rodent family.)

June garden harvest

One of the beauties of living in Phoenix is we have four complete growing seasons. With enough shade and water, you can grow year-round on the desert floor. This is so very rare and I’m pretty sure it isn’t included in the tourism material, as it should be. As if growing your own food in a time of mass seed production, corporate food processing monsters and the complete craziness that McDonald’s hamburgers cost less than an organic apple — in Phoenix, it is also easy.

Stay away birdies

I promise you easy peasy gardening that can produce handfuls of basil, buckets of tomatoes, squash, sunflowers, onions, garlic, carrots, rosemary and more. I can promise this because I’ve grown all of these with such a tiny space, it’s miraculous. I live in a shoe box-size home with a giant, oppressive HOA. When the evil money suckers weren’t looking (or apparently responding to my countless letters about changing the landscaping from grass to desert appropriate landscaping), I took over a couple community areas and began renegade gardening. I put seeds and tiny plants in the ground, covered them with compost and coffee grounds, watered with care and quickly began harvesting.

2-7-09: Front Veggie Garden Planted

2-7-09: Front Veggie Garden Planted

2-7-09: Front Veggie Garden Planted

2-7-09: Front Veggie Garden Planted

Tomato hedge to be teepeed

The tomatoes go wild

The tomatoes go wild

Thankfully, I keep my neighbors happy with handfuls of tomatoes, sprigs of fresh herbs and lemon pies and cookies when the lone tree is in season.

If you are interested in:

These classes typically cost $10. The networking, however, is priceless. You’ll meet other folk who are interested in the same things, having the same struggles and have found solutions. You’ll end up swapping seeds and compost, sharing loaves of homegrown zucchini turned bread, and finding a community of people in Phoenix who are so incredibly kind and well intentioned. I am really thankful to be a part of this ever-growing circle of like-minded friends.

Homemade pesto

Homemade pesto

Homemade pesto

Homemade pesto

Homemade pesto

Also, you don’t need Birkenstocks or a car that runs on used french fry oil to participate. There are people of all walks of life who love to garden. You must only have a willingness to learn and share.

As for what you need to garden — Starbucks free coffee grounds, a shoe box (or other container), water and seeds. I recommend this seed source. They are Tucson-based and a cooperative of dedicated gardeners. I also recommend planting heirloom seeds, taking the PPG seeds saving course and not giving a dime to the corporate seed companies that are genetically modifying nature. (Fuckers.)

Onions

Cilantro

Beets starry!

Pretty pommies

To be fried!

What to plant?

From October 1-15:

  • Globe artichoke
  • Garbanzo beans
  • Green snap peas
  • Bok choy
  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower
  • Collards
  • Corn
  • Dill
  • Endive
  • Fennel
  • Garlic
  • Kale
  • Leek
  • Lettuce
  • Melon
  • Mustard greens
  • Okra
  • Onion
  • Oregano
  • Parsnhip
  • peas
  • Peppers
  • Radish
  • Sage
  • Spinach
  • Squash
  • Swiss chard
  • Turnip

Shoot me an email if I can help encourage you in any way to get going. Remember kindergarden when you planted the bean and grew a little plant? It’s still that easy. It’s also a great way to show an appreciation for desert living. Growing your own garden is one of the most spritually fulfilling things I’ve ever done.

~K

{Also, shame on you Congress. SHAME! For the subsidies that make corn prolific and the family farm rare.}

Posted in
Arizona, Earth Mama, Flora and Fauna
Comments (10)

Pizza Steve! I want pizza!*

October 2nd

pizza making

pizza making

pizza making

pizza making

pizza making

pizza making

pizza

Pizza

Fig + Proscuitto

Carmelized onions, mushroom, asparagus

Whole wheat pizza + salad + four girlfriends

A night of disappearing carbs, countless glasses of wine and laughter and gossip that still has me giggling

~K

*”I want pizza Steve!” My brother used to repeat this with an accent after seeing “Multiplicity.” To this day, his impersonation makes me shake with laughter.

Posted in
Celebrate!, Domestic Art, Kitchen Talk
Comments (5)