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03 February 2011 @ 03:43 pm
While I haven't done much posting here on LJ, I'm starting to try and post a little more regularly over at my blog, Mr. Onion's Neighborhood. The first post, a meat-filled king cake I called Gâteau de Boeuf Royale (royal beef cake), followed by a Cabbage, Potato, and Sausage Casserole, and today just posted a Rum-Spiked Baklava recipe.

I'll likely be cross posting onto here, or at least linking to it. I've got some good things planned, and hope to add a little lagniappe (something extra) to each post if I can.

Hope you all enjoy.

01 April 2010 @ 04:02 pm
Hatching! Two of them just came out a little bit ago. I got the webcam in here, but I don't want to keep opening the incubator, so it's just going to stay where it is. Hoping to keep this up for awhile, even when we get them moved to the brooding box. Exciting!

19 January 2010 @ 09:48 am
Since I got him about a month after posting my last update, I thought I'd share a photo for those of you who haven't already heard me completely gush over him on Twitter, Facebook, or in Real Life.

This is Barley. He likes raw meat and bones, loves chewing on toys, and he absolutely loves to poop on the lawn of the Korean church around the corner from my house. He's a year and a half, 62 lbs, and thinks he's a lap dog. He's got a tail like a whip and when he wags it his whole back end shakes so much he can barely walk in a straight line.

He's awesome.
23 September 2009 @ 09:20 am
It's been a longish time, but in my defense, I've been busy.

The summer went by too fast, and it seems a lot has happened. Grandmother died. My roommate moved to New York sort of last-minute-ish to go to Pratt. A good friend of mine is going to have a baby. And this past weekend my old roommate got married. Bizarre.

I've been doing a lot of cooking. I discovered the local Asian markets, namely the Hong Kong Market in Gretna and the Asian Gourmet Market in Kenner, and have been doing a lot of experimenting. I'm going to try making my own dashi as soon as I can get out there and buy a crapload of bonito flakes. I've realized the joy of ramen -- not necessarily eating it as is, but adding things like pork, egg, bok choy, etc.

The strangest experiment (and the most satisfying) was making homemade butter (recipe here). kerath and I did some baking using the butter, buttermilk, and some eggs from her ducks. The cupcakes came out awesome. (Did you know that when a recipe calls for buttermilk, they really mean the buttermilk that comes as a by-product of making butter, not the cultured stuff you buy in the grocery store?)

I've made some homemade pepperoni that turned out surprisingly amazing, and am experimenting with making salt pork and pancetta. I'm slowly working my way up to dry-cured meats, completely inspired by the Cured Meats blog and Len Poli's sausage pages. The recipes are easy enough, and remind me a lot of the sort of specific and patient process of making beer. I need to get my hands on a meat grinder, though, as right now I'm doing solid cuts. (Next up is the Lonzino!)

I finally (partially) got my promotion, which is a bit of good news after a year of ... well, crap. Interim Assistant Dean for Budget and Technology. As soon as we can get through this hiring freeze nonsense from the oh-so-smart Bobby Jindal (who, I believe, is single-handedly trying to destroy higher education in Louisiana) we should be able to remove the "Interim" part.

Trucking along in school but not quite sure what I'm doing. I'm in the non-profit leadership tract, but still want to take some courses in educational administration. In short -- not graduating any time soon, and totally okay with that.

I need to find time to write music, which was something I couldn't do over the summer. I was at my happiest doing that, even though it was sometimes a frustrating process and, since I've been relatively unhappy for the past year, I should try and get back into that.
12 June 2009 @ 09:35 am
A bit of a shameless plug here -- a couple of UNO alumni are going to performing Lament for a Painter, a piece I wrote for flute and piano, on Thursday, June 18 @ 7:00pm at Trinity Episcopal Church as part of the Evensong Concert Series. The concert is mostly a bunch of dead famous guys, so it's kind of neat to be on the program with them!

It's definitely my most favorite piece I've ever written. The flautist is very into working with composers, so I might have someone to bounce some works off of over the summer. Sometimes just getting a read-through and a rough recording is enough for me. :)

Here's a recording from 2004, if anyone is interested. It's a little quiet in the beginning (the mic didn't pick up the strumming inside of the piano very well) but trust me, it's there:

03 June 2009 @ 09:32 am
... and I'm in Unread Mail Addict.

I have a serious problem. I don't like seeing anything next to the word "Inbox" as in "Inbox (1)".

I have another problem. Outlook 2007 supports RSS feeds.

And yet another problem. OutTwit puts my Twitter friends feed in Outlook 2007.

I can't stop. Things keep popping up. "Oh, an unread post in Boing Boing." Every minute, twenty unread Twitter postings. Slashdot. FAIL blog. Engadget. Gizmodo. XKCD. Boing Boing Gadgets.

Oh dear. Just got a slew of new postings in the time I was writing this. Gotta go ...
28 May 2009 @ 02:28 pm
I haven't updated in awhile (obviously) because I've been busting my ass trying to finish up a transcription project for the Greater New Orleans Youth Orchestra and a very tedious research paper on global diffusion of intellectual property rights policies. As my due dates are drawing near (tomorrow for the project, Sunday for the paper), I wanted to list out some things I am totally looking forward to doing when they are complete:

  • Writing music: While I don't think I could restart the Daily Composer project, I'll hopefully be writing at a regular pace and will post updates there again.
  • Gardening: I've been waiting for free time to build four raised beds in the yard at the new apartment to get some stuff planted. It's a little late in the season, but there's plenty that will still grow.
  • Unpacking: I have shelves. I have stuff out of boxes. But the stuff needs to go on the shelves.
  • Sleeping: Oh, how I miss you.
  • Social life: I've been brushing off a lot of friends and I feel terrible for it, but it's hard for me to justify going out when I have so much to do.
  • Video games: Seriously. I bought a PS3 a few months ago and used it for gaming for all of 2 hours. I need to fix that.
  • Movies: Wednesday night movie night. Too much coming out this summer for me to avoid.
  • Kickball: It just started last week and we have a bye game this upcoming Sunday, so the timing is perfect. I'm coming out of retirement, so I'm looking forward to getting back out and playing.
  • Summer classes: I haven't done this in awhile, but it's an online class with (get this) a 5 page group paper as the final project. Sweet! Plus it defers my loan payments ... can't argue with that.

These past few months have been rough professionally, academically and personally. The budget cuts at school have been really harsh and make work miserable. It's been a long time since I've dreaded getting up in the morning like I have been these days. Things are looking a little bit hopeful, though, and we're crossing out fingers that the legislators will vote in our favor to take the brunt of the cuts from higher education and health care. School this semester sucked, and personally ... well, no need for me to get all emo. Let's just say I'm still dealing with the same ol' shit, and leave it at that.

I think I have to can the museum project. If you don't remember, I had settled on a final project for my degree: a feasibility study for opening a science museum in New Orleans. Although I got a lot of support from friends and some faculty, my program director sort of poo-pooed the idea (too much work for one person) and I'd rather not deal with fighting to prove him wrong. (Plus, he's probably right anyway.) I have another idea in the works -- something that will satisfy the requirements for the non-profit tract as well as have some involvement in music the music and education communities. I'll discuss it later once I have a solid plan for it. It'll probably get shot down, but I'm hoping to get it started this summer before discussing it with the program director.

So, that's that for now.
30 April 2009 @ 02:43 pm
My roommate got a puppy. His name is Peter Tork.

He's the cutest thing ever.Collapse )
23 April 2009 @ 09:45 am
My cousin is getting married in October, and someone in the family is making a cookbook for her. I sent along some of my favorites. Most of these I've posted here, but I'm posting again so I can find them all in one spot.

I've got a bunch more to add (some appetizers, mostly, but also some other main courses), but these are probably my favorites.

Parmesan-Stuffed Bacon-Wrapped DatesCollapse )

Red Beans and Rice (slow cooker)Collapse )

Pulled Pork (slow cooker)Collapse )

BaklavaCollapse )

LimoncelloCollapse )
11 March 2009 @ 11:36 am
April 12 seems so far away, but 14 days down and 33 days to go ... technically. I might stick to just 40 days, but who knows. So far I've put myself in a variety of situations where otherwise I thought my temptation would get the better of me and have succeeded. I went to a bar with some fellow students, the Howlin' Wolf to see some bands and, last night, went to a rather "elite" party that Old New Orleans Rum was having. Last night was the only time I felt really tempted, especially when they sent us all walking away with 6 bottles of rum (which I placed under the care of kerath), but I'm fairly confident I'll succeed.

I have a couple of upcoming events that will test the willpower, though. St. Patty's day is just around the corner. A wedding at the end of the month. The first weekend in April I may be going on a camping trip with some friends -- friends who are fans of the alcoholic beverages. That weekend is my only concern. Since I haven't been indulging on Sundays -- as you are "allowed" to do since Lent lasts more than 40 days -- I may indulge on Friday evening and Saturday of that weekend. But we'll see.

Overall, I've noticed that I sleep better (although replacing alcohol with soda keeps me heavily caffeinated) and (surprise!) don't have to worry about driving home at night. But I also noticed that some people just don't want to hang out when alcohol isn't involved. Pretty strange, considering I spent so much time in high school doing just that, but in my adult life it's become such an integral part of my social encounters.

Ah well. Back to work.