Hello again! I didn’t mean to wait so many weeks. It keeps happening.
I keep writing posts and not finishing them and then I go in to edit them to make them make sense for posting later than I planned, but I have to edit time-sensitive parts of my language, get frustrated, and just start a fresh one.
I keep getting interrupted by life things. It’s frustrating me a lot. I also don’t know how to keep a routine that doesn’t disrupt my partner’s right now because our apartment’s layout is strange for so many different reasons. It was originally a flop house that the previous owner kept adding rooms to, so there are weird partitions and walls that keep us from putting things where they would functionally make sense. I’m trying to simply be grateful to have housing and make the best of the space (so I guess I’m whining right now).
Oh, also if you haven’t heard of them before, “flop houses” were/still are common in the US for working class people and recently immigrated folks. They usually consist of many smaller rooms connected by many locking doors and corridors, with multiple doors leading out of the building. They’re usually house-sized and look like a regular dwelling from the outside compared to the houses around them. Sometimes, the landlords add rooms and you can see the seams in the walls where they just kinda stuck a new room on with cheap materials. They’re a little different from duplexes or quadplexes in that they were not planned as “official” dwellings for the city-mandated maximum occupancy.
I want to get up at 4am, but there is nowhere for me to quietly work on my laptop that’s also ergonomic because the layout of this place is dumb, we can’t move key furniture pieces for a couple different reasons, and I don’t want to interrupt my partner’s sleep. I can’t get a quiet breakfast from the kitchen without potentially waking them up. Maybe I should make a tin of (quiet) breakfast bars to keep on my bedside table, fill a little bottle with water, and figure out things I can do sitting up in bed?
We’ve talked about it, and have come up with some more work arounds. I think it’ll work out ok for both of us for the time being. My partner is pragmatic and I appreciate that we can work things out that are mutually beneficial and respectful.
I like journaling first thing, and then I could sketch my dreams on physical paper. I keep getting ideas for animations from my dreams. I want to make one in particular and show you. I don’t want to describe it because I want it to be fresh when you see it. It’s so far away; I have to learn the 3D side of Blender; but I have two free months now to sink into what I want to do.
We might move soon for lots of reasons. I guess we’ll see sooner or later.
We’re double vaccinated now. We visited my mom a couple times so far. It didn’t take long for all of the strange backhanded things and manipulative behaviors to come out. I miss strict quarantine already.
I honestly appreciated that there was a reason that people were contacting me and seeing me less. I think some forgot about me, which again, I know it’s weird, but it’s relieving to me. I know that’s probably “terrible” or at minimum “odd” to people that can’t relate. It’s just. I can’t handle a lot from people. I’m socially burnt out, and I kinda feel like it’s forever? It’s like I’ve finally, actually accepted something about myself, how I function, and I refuse to “deal” with people anymore or try to put on the allistic show for them and their comfort. It feels curmudgeon-y? But I think it’s just a different way of existing. People like to pathologize behaviors, needs, and wirings they can’t relate to. I think it’s usually often out of misplaced fear of the unknown.
Why does everything have to be in-person, face-to-face, eye contact, abrupt shoulder taps, handshakes, hugs, kisses, implications, bizarre figures of speech (though I’ve adopted quite a few of these now as a masking adult), covert insults, confusingly taking the piss out of each other without clear boundaries on how far is appropriate and how far is not, bleeeehhhh. I don’t mind if other people interact this way and I really do see the inherent value to them. I want them to see that my way has inherent value also, and I actually can’t do it their way anymore, the same way they likely would not be able to sustain “my way” of existence over time.
I know I keep talking about it, but I’m looking into doing part-time data entry from home after I’m done with my contract work. I have maybe two more years, depending on what I can handle. I might bail this year if it’s too much, I don’t know. I’m feeling pretty “meh” about taking the time to make this decision. A lot of my “stay at home mom” aunts did data entry from home while their kids were at school so that they could multitask with house chores and personal passion projects. I’ve found something similar with having served my clients virtually from home this year. I find from-home work ideal, regardless of how mind numbing the task is.
My time off officially starts tomorrow. I’m already working on storyboarding some animations, composing music, making pixel art, and trying to develop a deeper understanding of Python3 script. I want to make something meaningful to me, worth “releasing” that I may never actually “release” haha. I want to prove to me, and me only, that I can make things that I’m proud of when I’m not insanely overstimulated and disrupted. That it was the chaos around me stealing my mind, not some lack of drive and determination or whatever folks like to tell folks with executive dysfunction and/or sensory processing issues their personal failing is that’s keeping them from achieving their dreams.
I didn’t make anything for the three years that I worked retail. There is a gap in the year marks in the top right corners in my private sketchbook. I didn't touch an instrument. I barely baked.
Here’s a list of the things I can remember making with all this dang CSA produce we've been getting because I like lists:
- rhubarb chutney ( recipe from Diana Rattray at The Spruce Eats)
- mint chutney (and samosas, recipe from Ryoya Takashima at Peaceful Cuisine —I subbed carrots in for peppers and all-purpose flour for the whole wheat flour, left out anything that would make them "spicy" because I forgot to put spicy peppers on our shopping list, and baked them instead of deep-frying them by brushing them with olive oil and baking at 425°F until they were golden brown)
- strawberry rhubarb handpies ( recipe from Heather at Sugar Dish Me)
- scallion pancakes ( recipe from Sue Li at Bon Appetit —I subbed sunflower oil in for all oils called for because we were out of other oils)
- carrot greens chimichurri ( recipe from Jeanine and Jack at Love and Lemons)
- mint and radish salad with lemon zest/juice vinaigrette, drizzled with honey (pairing I noticed a lot online)
- asparagus with butter and lemon (pairing I noticed a lot online)
- quinoa spinach salad (pairing I noticed a lot online)
- lots of scraps stocks!!! (throw all of the veggie/herb scraps and cheese rinds if you have them in the pot (optionally, fry them lightly in oil for a couple minutes before adding water) with water, put the lid on and bring to a gentle simmer, and wait at least 3 hours! Strain it! Yum! Add salt if you want! Or hot sauce! Or fresh herbs! Or anything, really.)
I learned by shattering three of our two litre mason jars that mason jars with shoulders are not freezer safe, even though I left ample head room above the liquids and I adequately cooled them on the counter then the fridge before placing them in the freezer. I don’t think it’s possible to purchase straight-sided two litre mason jars. Or I haven’t found any that call themselves “freezer safe”.
Sooo yeah. I’ve wasted six litres of perfectly good stock through my ignorance on jars haha. I’m really bummed about this last one because it had a complex, rich, almost smokey flavor that I was looking forward to using that I wasn't expecting out of a vegetarian stock. Stocks and the CSA are renewing my passion for vegetarian cooking. I guess I need to invest in some straight-sided smaller mason jars sometime soon. We don’t quite have enough for the volume of produce we’re going through right now. We already repurpose quality glass jars that we get from products we buy, but none of them are quite large enough for this specific application.
I'm going to try making Three Cup Tofu today with a couple simple vegetable side dishes. If it works out well, I'll share the recipe I worked off of. There was a vegan Taiwanese restaurant I really enjoyed spending time at that I want to go down memory lane to with this dish. It's gone now. I'll share more about it another time.
Anyway, thanks for reading! I haven’t gotten any heavy, dark greens in the CSA yet so there’s still no ferments to share, but hopefully soon. I hope you’re enjoying your day! Seeya next time.