Friday, 26 July 2013

Blumbling Burritos

Today I had beefy barbacoa for lunch. Blame it on schedules, diets or whatever, iron must be missing from my diet. I’ve been feeling faint for days and thought a meaty burrito would be the cure. That, or a cabana in Turks and Caicos.

Dublin burritos, sadly, do not EVEN compare to burritos from home. Home is the taqueria at 34th and Balboa. Or pick any one of the other 92 taquerias in San Francisco.

Just maybe, what if it was San Francisco who did burritos wrong, and all of Dublin’s burritos are correct? I think not.

At a Dublin taqueria counter, a cold tortilla is filled with the usual fixings. It very nearly breaks. It then is wrapped in tin foil and tossed in a microwave or set on a grill to get hot.

For those non-foodies, in SF a burrito begins its life in the tortilla steamer—for a splash second and it becomes hot and pliable. Soft, hot and ready to go. In fact, once it’s in the tinfoil, it is very nearly in your hands.

Not in Dublin. ..first the order queue and then the wait-for-your-food queue.

A tortilla steamer would eliminate two or three steps. Not to mention lower my blood pressure.

I still enjoyed my beefy barbacoa. The name was catchy and just when I was thinking it would be cute for someone named Barbara to order a beef barbacoa, did I think to look up it on Wiki:

Beefy Barbacoa
In the US, barbacoa is often prepared with parts from the heads of cattle, such as the cheeks.
In northern Mexico, it is also sometimes made from beef head, but more often it is prepared from goat meat.

Maybe it’s not so bad that I’m eating a burrito from Dublin?

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

No Wonder You Don't Bring Me Flowers

This weekend my husband said those four filthy words to me.  I'd like to think I'm an even-headed gal, but it will take some time for the mean sentiment to fade.  Before I share the offending statement, may I remind you?

I commute 4 hours a day to my full time job. I pre-prepare dinner at 5am on most days. I arrange a live-in au pair to mind the girls. I read to the girls every night. I cook, clean and bake on the weekends. I initiate date nights for us. And,
I sew on Saturday mornings. In the last nine months I have sewed 9-12pm on a handful of evenings, mostly finishing projects for the girls.

On Saturday he announced he was going to watch a match at 7pm, which translates to "Shot gun! I get the television!"

Earlier he and I discussed the ridiculous behavior of Irish lawmakers and he spoke of inappropriate alcohol consumption. Funny he should say that, to which I inferred that 'everyone' could do with a bit more prioritising over alcohol, albiet, we live in a culture nutured over generations.

The football match began while Babydoll and I baked cookies. Then I set to sewing. Cutiepie, forever the sportsgirl, joined him in watching the match. I could hear her peppering him with questions in between hoops and hollers.

And that's when he said what he said. Full of dislike for our earlier conversation and an impatience for  interruptions in the match, he marched into the kitchen and dished it out to me:

You. sew. too. much.

That was his mildest statement that I choose to share. I spare you the ridiculous argument that ensued, save to say he makes incredulous statements like, "there's a reason it's all old ladies who sew!"

In complete shock and upset, I bundled all my sewing and packed it in the attic. Bear with me as I muddle through this domestic squabble. As always, there are bigger things behind the lense.

It took me a few days to stop shaking long enough to photograph and post my project for class.

Maybe I should do what he does every night?  There'd be war over who gets the remote and he'd be ever more sorry he scolded me for sewing!

Monday, 1 July 2013

Projects in Tow

There may be one or two college buddies, who found in a study group with me, might call me a procastinator. But, in the end I always, do get the job done.

Much of my delay is due to always taking the the less traveled path. I lay it on steep when trying to do something different, something with a twist. I’ll admit, most of the time I have regrets. I know that had I followed the flock, my life would be easier.

In May we started the sample quilt and in June I was planning a unique border for it. The quilt is headed to San Francisco newlyweds, so now in July, I’ve decided on the border and hope to get quilted and gone soon.

Classes forge on at the Sewing Shed, so I’m back in school and behind the pack already!

We began this one with a centre applique that put my mind to wandering. The Lovin’ Log Cabin is appealing because, well it’s a log cabin pattern—the quickest assembly for many of us. This is the class assignment’s centre:

In considering my colour scheme, my attention fell to the flower arrangement. In my own dining room, my favourite arrangement is a heap of white blooms—nothing is fresher and beautiful than a burst of white flowers. So I decided to modify the floral arrangement with more flowers, less vase. This lack of colour would only work if set against black. So I’m setting it on black with lime green leaves and stems. The petals are done in embroidered pinks which eventually I hope to set off with beads and crystals. With colours that are not best for layperson photography, this has become my center arrangment:.

I’m looking forward to building the log cabins from pink and green scraps. The pink and green log cabins will be again set off by black corners. All hand stitching is being done during commute, so I'm delighted to have this project to work!

A nice lap quilt for our colder Irish months purposely named, Summer Blooms in Winter. Procastination or not, I’m certain I can gift this to myself for Christmas

Cool School Days

Friday was the last day of the school year for the girls which was the pinnacle for all the parties, lack of school work, early collection, and of course, more sweets. The parties and candy start early; I think my daughters have been without homework and mindful treats at school since the beginning of June. Though with no ending workload, the girls are managing well in studies..

They received their report cards and grades are up and holding. Babydoll had been struggling, but we reinforced some studying habits and it’s paid off. Both girls made their usual thank you Teacher tote bags. Cutiepie’s teachers were repeat from Babydoll, so we designed a cute wall hanging for the two job share teachers. At the last minute, Cutiepie said one of her teachers, who always uses her tote bag from Babydoll given a previous year, commented that she couldn’t wait to get another tote bag. So we kicked into gear and, these days Cutiepie does all the stitching, so it wasn’t too bad at the 11th hour.

Everyday in June it seemed like party time for these students.

What I wouldn’t give to be a fly on the wall at the school in the weeks that lead up to breaks. I am astonished. It’s ridiculous that they get an entire month for a ‘wind down’. There’s the usual end of year events as sports day, but beyond that each school day should be a working, learning day. What kind of lesson is this for children? What society or lifestyle today builds in a month ‘winding down’ without obligations to do as expected?

Unless of course, we’re assuming each of these kids land a job teaching at the school.