Saturday, May 25, 2013

Catching Up With Pictures

In a sad attempt to make up for lost time, here's a quick insta-roundup of what's been going on the past few weeks:

A couple weekends ago, my friend Josh and I drove up to Bangor to see some of our friends from college graduate. We both dressed up, me in my red lace dress and him in his button-down and dapper shoes. It was good to give don't-trip hugs beforehand and to just relax with people afterwards.

For her belated mother's day, my brother and I took my mom out on a winery excursion in Union, Maine. The places had tastings, so we got to try a lot of what they had. I overindulged, of course, and bought way too many bottles. The White Rose from Savage Oakes miiiiiight be my favorite? I don't know. I haven't tried the mead, 'cause it's the only thing I didn't actually buy from the wineries, but instead got at the farmer's market. I expect it'll be delicious, too. The moral here is that it turns out that there are some really yummy wines made within an hour or so of my house. Which is ballin'.

Also on our belated Mother's day schedule was a Portland Seadogs game. Momma loves baseball. (I love basically being a child, so I paid extra on my sundae so it would come in this adorable little helmet. I can't even. I'm going to have ice cream in it tonight after dinner.) It was awesome, 'cause they won in the bottom of the ninth with a grandslam. They had fallen behind, and had two outs, and then... BAM, outta the park. It was neat.

This is where I've been spending a large portion of my money these days. I'm addicted to Mystique Chevre. ADDICTED. Orange goat cheese, jalapeno goat cheese... lemon pepper, kahlua, herbs and spices, you name it - she makes it in a goat cheese. And then there's a guy who makes the best salami and another guy who has turkey meat, there are soap makers and bread bakers, several produce stands, free range eggs, a lady who makes the BEST scones and a hilarious flower guy. I highly recommend spending too much money at farmer's markets, 'cause not only are you getting seriously yummy, fresh food/flowers/goods or what-have-you, you're supporting your local economy. These people make their livings this way, and every little bit seriously helps. Just do it.

Annnnd the other place my money is going: plants. I'm being optimistic, and planting lots of stuff. "Stuff"means jalapeƱo, cayenne and green peppers, sungold and early girl tomatoes, bush green beans, garlic, cucumbers, arugula, chocolate mint, basil, chives and lots of flowers in the window boxes. Here's to hoping container gardens are more my thing than starting up herbs from seeds.

So, that's what I've been up to these past couple weeks, in addition to moving into the new place and the cleaning that entailed. In the next few weeks, hopefully I'll be doing a lot of planting and painting, and will have more exciting things to share with you. :)

Friday, May 24, 2013


I've been so terrible, I'm sorry. I have the world's most pathetic excuse. We moved over into our apartment, and I got distracted. Plus I just realized yesterday that I can "borrow" internet from a nearby inn. Writing posts from my phone or tablet is just such a big pain in the behind, I was going to wait until we got internet set up in our new place. Or, you know, anything set up in our new place.

That might be a little harsh. We have our ridiculously large tv, two sofas (one of which is going to get thrown away and replaced soon) and, as of last night, our dishes. And I finally brought my toothbrush. But that's really about it.

I guess I should explain. We did end up moving into the apartment above the garage at my mother's house. It's mad cute. However, it was also mad filthy. The last tenants were hardly close to godliness, and then my Momma wasn't planning on renting it this year, so there were... things that needed attention. Like the blanket of mold growing in the freezer. BLANKET of MOLD, folks. We wore rubber gloves and face masks, and were so upset that we started calling the mold names. The old tenants were from a different country, and we weren't terribly nice to that country in the things that we said. Which is hardly fair, because it's a perfectly nice country, and it's not its fault that the last tenants left mold growing in the freezer. But I digress. The point is that I had floors, bathrooms, freezers and cabinets to scrub. And soon, I'll have painted the bathroom, and Will will have screened in the deck. (He's convinced that ticks are going to drop on our heads from the overhanging trees, two stories up. I've been caught rolling my eyes repeatedly.) We'll have our actual bed and bureau, and I'll get the daybed and plants set up in the sunroom. Maybe we'll get around to painting the kitchen cabinets. Who knows. There's a friggin' lot to do.

Which brings me back to my apology. I suck. Like, a whole, giant bunch. And I am sorry. After work and then working on the apartment, I did not feel like spending my time hunting down an internet signal. Instead I spent my time eating expresso chip ice cream, snuggling with my man, and watching The Avengers at least a zillion times because it's the only movie we had downloaded onto the PS3. So there's that. But now that I've found internet, I'll keep you guys posted on the transformation of our new place and all the delicious things I'm going to be planting in container gardens on the deck. Pinky promise.

Thursday, May 09, 2013

Growing Things: Even more updates

A few days ago, I noticed that there were indeed a few little growing things in my small pots! Almost entirely chives, though, and only one basil. Still no lavender anywhere, which is a bummer. Also I spent all day today clearing leaves and transplanting raspberries. I even dug some of the berry plants up and potted them to give to friends. 'Cause I have a zillion. That's barely an exaggeration. There are some other little seedlings that are popping up in the kitchen window that I'm dying to take a picture of, but I'm waiting for the lighting to be perfect. It's the cutest little egg-carton-herb-window-box thing. You'll see.

I'm going to be busy getting the apartment ready for Will and my move-in date, which is sometime next week after the plumber comes. But after that there will be sewing curtains and planting container gardens and convincing Will we need a comfy daybed more than we need a breakfast nook. I know, a nook sounds adorable, but really the set-up is a pain in the butt. Out with you, breakfast nook! I will have a place to curl up and read, you cannot stop me! Besides, he overrode my sectional dreams for a svelte-and-sleek if not cozy black leathery futon thing. Now it's my turn to override his breakfast nook aspirations in exchange for my cozy daybed. <- This is love, guys... just plotting to get your way and then rationalizing it afterwards.

Tuesday, May 07, 2013

Tunesday Vol. IX

When my plan was to join Will in Florida, I had my friends make me mixed cds with a strict ten-song-limit. And they did great - it was so cool to see what songs they narrowed it down to and how they went about picking them.

This week's song is off of one of those cds. This particular friend chose songs that signify certain periods of time for him - a song for the winter, a song for graduation, a song for spring. In fact, he didn't even give me any song titles, just the period the song stood for. The song that I'm picking today is the one he included for our senior year. It's "Despite What You've Been Told" by a band called Two Gallants, and it's a little rough and very beautiful.

Posted on 1:10 PM | Categories:

Thursday, May 02, 2013


Last week was a good week for me. I planted some pansies with my momma, then helped her with a yard sale in our garage. Which meant a lot of heaving lifting and saying goodbye to my Dad's old wood-working tools, but it really was all for the best.

Then, my darling dearest finally arrived in Maine, after an extended stay in Florida. I broke into his house (with the spare key) and waited for him with food from his favorite place to eat in the Harbor: Vietnamese food. This is the picture I took from his porch. Did I mention the jerk lives right on the ocean? I love going to hang out with his family there.

Then, a couple days later, a couple of my best friends from school showed up. Hooray! William then bought himself a birthday present of several hundred dollars worth of fireworks, and gave us all a show. It was awesome. I would have taken pictures of the event itself, instead of just the fireworks, but I was more concerned for my safety. It was a little more thrilling than I anticipated.

We spent the next couple of days playing tourist in town, which included being by the sea and going to the popcorn store to try all of their delicious flavors. My friends ended up buying a bag of the dill pickle flavor, and then a mixed bag of buffalo wing and blue cheese. Mad yummy.

Friday night marked the opening night of my favorite bar in town, and it was PACKED. And that was only because it was Fisherman's Festival over the weekend. (Which is about the cutest and most embarrassing festival a town can have. I would have taken pictures of the Codfish Relay, The Lobster Eating Competition and the Trap Hauling Contest, but I was at work. Also, all of those things are exactly what they sound like. Except in the Codfish Relay, teams of high school kids have to put on foul weather gear - which is pictured here.. safe link, I promise - and then run around the town holding dead cod. It's hilarious.)

And finally, a picture of the progress my arugula is making. I can't wait to toss those greens into a yummy arugula, spinach and feta salad...

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Tunesday Vol. VIII

This week's song is one of my favorite songs ever. I love to turn it up in my truck, windows down. Or sitting quietly in my bedroom with candles lit and the lava lamp going. It's so wonderful.

And then there's the video. Dear lord, the video! I want to be a little kid and dress up and have a feather-filled pillow fight in the woods! With crowns and fur boots! Or masks and colored feathers! I want all the things. And then with this song behind it... perfection.

Without further ado: The Paper Kites - Featherstone.

Posted on 9:30 AM | Categories:

Monday, April 29, 2013

Green and Growing Things: An Update

As you can see in the above picture, my arugula is growing nicely. In fact, it's so dense that I have a hard time watering it. However, this is almost the only good news I have about my plants.

The other good news is that chives sprouted in my big pot of herbs earlier last week, and the basil is finally poking its head out, too. But that's it. No lavender, and no herbs of any kind in the smaller pots. So of course I planted an egg carton full of basil and chives, and then lots of little plastic pot sets with lavender. Because if I can't succeed the first time, maybe I can the second. I think the trouble the first time around was that I was terrified of over-watering them, and so they were consequently under-watered. (If that's even a word.) In any case, they were very dry. But when I started covering them with plastic and giving them a good drench now and then, the chives popped up. So who knows.

Chives! And basil! IT'S ALIIIIIIIVE! However, no lavender showing in the bottom right.
It's becoming clear that while I wasn't blessed with the same sort of green thumb as my Dad was, some things can thrive under my care. Like salad greens. And the spider plants I repotted - those have lots of new deep green growth on them! And it was my loving care that got them there. You know, or something.

Also, since we haven't figured out where we're living yet, I haven't gotten to plant anything outside except pansies, for my mother. They're very pretty, but I want to grow things that I can eat, you know?

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Tunesday Vol. VII - The Return of William + Love Songs

Ugh! I haven't posted since last tunesday! How lame of me. In my defense, I did have a busy week doing yard work and gardening at home and at work while we had some nice weather. I was going to the dump with leaves and branches two or three times a day! And in Maine, you really do need to take advantage of the sunny, 55 degree days, because it'll turn back into cold and overcast overnight. Like today. It's 40 degrees, overcast and breezy. Miserable!

I am also beyond happy, as William has come home from Florida. Reunited lovebirds, at last! Which brings me to this week's song: Home, by Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeros. It's one of the few folky songs in my playlists that Will really likes, too. He calls it "our song" and for a metal-head, that's quite a surprising thing. Besides, now he's "home" with me!

I'll do better posting this week, swears. I'm in the middle of planning Will's surprise birthday party (he turns 24 tomorrow) and if anyone else has to bail, it's going to be the lamest surprise party ever. So I'll keep you posted on that. Then this weekend is Fisherman's Festival in the harbor where I live, and I'm manning a "sidewalk sale" for the shop... and we'll see if anyone shows up to that, either. I could be the worst event planner in the history of event planning, but I guess we'll see.

Posted on 2:33 PM | Categories:

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Tunesday Vol. VI

Yesterday was a sad day. I can't imagine any of you haven't heard about the Boston Marathon bombing yet, so I'll skip rehashing what has been said over and over again. It's all completely heart-wrenching. I had to make myself stop reading every story that came along or watching every bit of footage. Some of it is very bloody. If you were like me, I recommend taking a breather and turning everything off.

After checking in with the few people I know and cherish who live in Boston and hearing that they were fine, I turned right to my tunes. I wanted something soothing, something a little sad, something that echoed what I felt and what I needed. Thankfully 75% of my music happens to be exactly that. I knew exactly what I wanted to hear. I'm posting a few songs today... like, four. Please bear with me.

This is "Follow You Down To The Red Oak Tree" by James Vincent McMorrow, and it's just simply rather beautiful, and just a little sad.

This next song is "Avril 14th" by Aphex Twin. It is a complete coincidence that the name of the song is so close to yesterday's date. I picked it because it has the prettiest piano in it, and is one of the few instrumental songs I can listen to over and over.

This is "Scenic World" by Beirut. Nothing gives me hope when I'm down like this song. "When I feel alive, I'll try to imagine a careless life, a scenic world where the sunsets are all, breathtaking."

This last song is "That Moon Song" by Gregory Alan Isakov. This song echoes what I said about the first song, though it is a little stronger. I love to listen to this one in the truck, windows down, singing along.

If you've made it this far, I just wanted to end with a little sentiment that I'm sure we all feel - Boston, our thoughts and hearts are with you.
Posted on 12:15 PM | Categories:

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

House Hunt 2013

My boyfriend and I are currently in the midst of our third apartment hunt. Well, in reality, I'm in the midst of our third apartment hunt. It's not necessarily that he isn't incredibly helpful and supportive.. it's more that he's technically a Floridian and we live in Maine, and therefore he somehow lacks the proper Maine-house-hunting skills, I guess. Also he's in Florida right now anyway. (Have I ever mentioned that we have a pretty weird relationship, as far as relationships go? Hunting for our third apartment and closing in on six years together, and yet we still end up spending months and months apart. Blergh. Don't get involved with anyone from another state - especially one 1,500 miles away - unless you really, really like them.)

So, Will the Stinker doesn't have to help in the search. Lucky for him, because the town we're living in has a whopping population of 3,000 year-round residents and essentially only vacation rentals. Which puts a serious cramp in my search-style, 'cause leveraging something like Craigslist or Trulia is basically impossible. Word of mouth is pretty much my only option, which is total lame-sauce, because even in a town as small as mine, you can't possibly know everyone.

Annnnd now we're all caught up to my current predicament: I happen to know of a very convenient, sunny and inexpensive place that I could paint and essentially do whatever I wanted to design-wise, that has a sun room and a deck - you know, in addition to all those normal rooms like kitchens and whatnot that apartments have. The kicker, however, is that Will doesn't want to live there, because it's ... above the garage at my childhood home, where my mother currently lives. And also the bathroom is a tiny closet/jail with no window. But more important is the proximity to my mother, because my man likes his music loud. And he likes shooting his loud gun. And he likes to hang out with his loud friends and watch loud movies and... are you seeing a theme?

Unfortunately, I have fallen in love with the idea of a cornflower blue kitchen with white cabinets and a sun room with a pillow covered daybed. And a great big grey corner sofa from Ikea that fits in the room perfectly. These are things that I'm probably not going to get in another apartment, and especially not at the same wonderful, just-out-of-college-budget kind of price. Le sigh. Now, to convince him to want it while I continue the search at the same time. How do you convince a stubborn boy to want something he's already decided against? That's possible, right?