Our goal of having the kitchen finished by August died an expected, but painful death as The Simple Man and I looked at each other in quiet desperation over the weekend and saw the truth in each others eyes.
The largest projects are finished, but as anyone who has ever remodeled knows, there are numerous smallish tasks to do before it is totally complete. A partial list (I know, so boring):
- Attach and paint windows/doors trim
- Paint touch ups
- Ceiling Fan/Overhead light
- Range hood (this took finagling and will take more finagling to look right)
- Endless wiping of floor and back-splash to get rid of haze
- Ad nauseam
The floor tiles have ended up being both more delightful than I thought and a real pain. They have pits in them, and if we'd researched more thoroughly, we would have known 1) that it would be a mind/back/butt numbing job getting all the grout out of them or 2) to choose a darker grout. We chose a medium gray grout because we thought it looked more rustic than, say, mocha - and therein lies the error of our ways. The gray grout looks fine with the tiles, but ON the tiles, filling the pits, it looks rather horrible. I have to squat, with q-tips, a scrubby brush and a gallon of white vinegar over each tile, dabbing straight vinegar onto the pits, letting it dissolve, then scrubbing the grout out. Rinse with water. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. Should have gone with the mocha.
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I cleaned my refrigerator this week in preparation to move it back into the kitchen. Found a gallon of organic, raw milk, from grassfed cows raised by the local Amish, costing six dollars a gallon, a day or so away from fermentation. I went into full Dairy Frenzy. How to render a gallon of milk about to turn, usable for the next few days to a week? My answer was pudding and yogurt.
I'm not hardcore enough to use the cooler packed with blankets incubator method; I've been using the Euro Cuisine yogurt maker for years. We aren't a big family and The Simple Man isn't Yogurt Man and my eldest has suddenly been stricken with dairy intolerance - so this is a good weekly amount for the toddler and me.
With the rest of the milk I made pudding from this recipe. I made chocolate and vanilla, doubling both recipes in order to use up all the milk. After that I made pudding popsicles, which were quite a hit. I haven't made popsicles since I left home because I didn't want to use plastic. There are some really nice stainless steel molds, but they are incredibly expensive - I can't justify it for popsicles. Then one day I came across a food blog using some kind of long narrow glass for popsicles. We aren't drinkers, and never have been, so I had no idea what these glasses were. Fifty comments later someone exclaimed what a great idea it was to use tall vodka glasses for popsicle molds. I went right out and found some. They had coloured bottoms, which delighted the girls, but for some reason made me think of those pornish looking lucite high heels. We used bamboo skewers for the holders.
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I like to start habits on the first day of a new month. A new week will do, but it really satisfies me to begin with a new month. I recently discovered the blog A Big Creative Yes and it has made me think about the barriers I put up around making art, or really doing anything that isn't "neccessary." I guess it would be too much to ask you all to pretend that you didn't notice how I put off creating until the beginning of the month? I thought so. But that's exactly what I'm talking about. There will always be something else to do, a chance it won't work, possible frustration, and countless other fears and obstacles. So I've been inspired to take the advice I've found there and put it into practice. Instead of waiting for that fantasy day where I might have a few hours to sit down and do something, I'm going to simply set myself a goal of 15 minutes a day to just create. I use the term loosely; it could be painting, sewing, pattern making, writing, building, or something else I haven't even thought of yet. It make take many 15 minute sessions to finish something, but at least I will be doing something other than whining that I never have time to do anything!
And that, friends, is how my August is looking!