I tried this recipe today.
The cookies came out looking like this:
I did not take a picture of what my kitchen looked like after making the batter because I didn’t want to scare you. I also did not photograph the kitchen sink piled high with measuring cups. Something I learned today: don’t double this recipe in the stand mixer. The taste verdict: still out. Butterscotch chips and coffee are overpowering, and the cookie needs to be baked on the lowest rack at 350 (not 375) for 14 minutes, and then turned and baked for an additional 4 minutes in order to get the colouring described in the recipe. If you bake it at 375, the cookies spread too much.
May 24, 2013 2 Comments
I was vacuuming on Wednesday, and I managed to tip over a lamp, shattering it. No one came up to see if I was okay, because… you know… it was only a loud crash and then the sound of spraying glass. No biggie.
I came downstairs and told the twins and their friend what happened, and then set out to clean up the mess. I picked up the big pieces and the rest of the lamp, and dragged it through the room they were all in so I could put it in the garbage outside. In doing so, I cut my foot on some of the glass and commented that I was bleeding, and they dully called out, “sorry that you’re bleeding” as I limped through their scintillating game of ponies.
And then, a half hour later, during dinner — which was late due to the lamp incident — I commented that we’d have to go out to get a lamp that night and the Wolvog said, “whoa, why are we buying a lamp?”
Am I talking to the air molecules?
Josh ended up picking up the lamp. The man at the store told him it was six feet tall. He assembled it. It definitely wasn’t six feet.
In the middle of the night, I got up to pee, and when I came out of the bathroom, I gasped and jumped backwards. At first I thought there was a very petite and skinny man in our room. Then I thought there was an emaciated dragon. Then I remembered that we had a new lamp. Then I went back to sleep.
There is still time to join along for the first book of the GRAB(ook) Club. We’re discussing on June 13th. And if you can’t join that one, hop on for one of the later ones in the summer:
- June’s Book: Measure of Love by Melissa Ford (discuss on June 13)
- July’s Book: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (discuss July 18)
- August’s Book: To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (discuss August 15)
- September’s Book: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (discuss September 12)
My brother had some fantastic writing advice on his blog this week, and it has nothing to do with what you put down on the page or the amount of times you tweet each week to build your platform. It has everything to do with how you treat other people; not the ones that you think you can get something from, but the ones that you treat well along the way just because. Those usually turn out to be the ones who make the biggest difference in whether you make it out of the slush pile or not.
Frankly, the idea to “remember Joe” is good advice for life in general. Not to focus on some people while ignoring others; since it’s usually the ones that you ignore who turn out to be the most important.
By the way, he’s been on both sides of agenting and editorial, and he takes publishing and writing questions if you have them because he’s nice. In fact, sometimes when you ask me something, I, in turn, check with him.
Plus he gives really really good editing notes. Like he just did for Apart at the Seams. I could not write without him, even though I do remember the Joes.
Speaking of which, the winner of the Measure of Love e-book giveaway is…
Dora from My Preconceived Notion. Congratulations! I will be emailing you today.
I will hopefully have another copy to give away soon.
And now the blogs…
But first, second helpings of the posts that appeared in the open comment thread last week. In order to read the description before clicking over, please return to the open thread:
Okay, now my choices this week.
River Runs Dry has a post about having it all… except not really. It starts with her desire to be a CEO in the future, and ends with her thought of leaving behind that goal. I love this thought: “it’s a matter of focus. Focusing on what’s needed in the here and now. If that means my career takes a backseat in the coming years so I can focus on other things, then so be it.”
Mine to Command has a post about challenging herself as well as accepting her limitations, which is applicable to so many facets in life. The post happens to be about running, but she brings it around to babymaking by the end. I hope she gets pregnant this cycle because the repetition of that number would make for a good story.
Old Lady and No Baby has a post about the talk she gives her softball team before prom. In years past, she has focused on drugs or alcohol, but this year, the topic was sex and it ran the gamut from pointing out that the pressure has been there for every generation (“Those types of pressures haven’t changed, they have simply become more acceptable. We HAVE been in their shoes and we DO understand how hard it is.”) to her own personal experience with infertility and loss. I sort of wish she traveled the country and gave her talk to all teenagers.
Lastly, My Lady of the Lantern has a post about being kind to herself. I love this part: “But I seem to have developed a habit of looping and repeating the negative experience in my mind till something else comes up. I began taking hurt too personally, and kept it close.” Me too. Oh my G-d, and this: “This family drama is jelly. You can press it and take it to any shape.” Great post.
The roundup to the Roundup: I mostly talk to the air. Not too late to join the online book club. My brother’s great writing advice. The winner of the Measure of Love giveaway. And lots of great posts to read. So what did you find this week? Please use a permalink to the blog post (written between May 17th and May 24th) and not the blog’s main url. Not understanding why I’m asking you what you found this week? Read the original open thread post here.
May 24, 2013 8 Comments
I really love these these discussions.
I am a shower-er. No baths for me, pretty much ever. I like to get clean quickly. Those showers that have stone seats built in the corner, encouraging the user to luxuriously relax in the warm spray of water… I use those ledges to hold shampoo bottles.
I’m a fan of hot springs like Ein Gedi, but other than something like that, I don’t enjoy… soaking. I don’t enjoy sitting in a tub of water.
I do have a dream shower, even if I don’t have a dream house. I want a shower with a window in it. I wrote about it a while back in the post about the vomiting clown picture:
My friend, A, and I made a reservation to stay in a pensione in Rome for two weeks while we did research. After we dragged our suitcases up six flights of stairs, we learned that the woman who owned the pensione had decided to do some renovations that week. “You’ll stay in my apartment,” she told us, giving us the key to her personal home.
Instead of a small room in a boarding house, we now had an apartment in Trastevere, a much nicer section of Rome, complete with a washer and dryer, several bedrooms, and–my favourite part of all–a shower with a window in it. I’ve always said that it is my dream to live in a house that had a window in the shower. Those who have never been in a shower like this usually respond, “it sounds creepy.” But those who have showered in one know the saying, “once you’ve had the window cracked, you can never go back.”
I still dream about that shower and the little red, circular window.
So, do you prefer showering or bathing?
May 23, 2013 31 Comments
Haven’t gotten your copy of the second Rachel Goldman book, Measure of Love? You’re in luck.
I’m doing a giveaway of an iBook version of Measure of Love to celebrate the book coming out on iTunes.
Entering is simple. Leave a comment below telling me your dream spot to hold a wedding. Anything goes: nuptials on a space station, shivering through a ceremony in Antarctica, or underwater vows in Bali. If money were literally no object, where would you love to hold a wedding?
A winner will be chosen at random at 6 pm ET Thursday afternoon and announced in the Friday Blog Roundup. If you win but don’t own an Apple device, you can give away the book to a person of your choosing.
So say “I Do” to Measure of Love!
May 22, 2013 26 Comments
We were watching Pete’s Dragon, and the ChickieNob asked how the medical charlatan who rode through town tricked the people time after time since he had obviously been through Passamaquoddy before. And I explained that where matters of the body are concerned, emotions run high, and people will sometimes try anything for their health and well-being.
I was thinking about Doc Terminus when I saw the story about the online test to predict your success with IVF tonight. Step right up, step right up, ladies and gentlemen, for just a tiny sum of money, a mere trifle, Univfy can PREDICT with not-so-great accuracy the chances of a woman having a life birth via IVF. Step! Right! Up!
That is, if you have around $275.
The cost of a Univfy test ranges from $50 to $100 for the pre-IVF test, to $175 for the Predict IVF test, for women who have already undergone in vitro fertilization and are considering another cycle.
In other words, the information your DOCTOR should be able to tell you in helping you make sound decisions about your medical care, can now be purchased by an independent company which is merely taking statistics such as your age, weight, and fertility history and comparing it to other people in a database. Against other people in a database, I’m sure I’d look like a good candidate for IVF. You know, if you didn’t look at my FSH levels. And if you did look at my FSH levels and look at my pregnancy record, you wouldn’t need to shell out $175 to know that I’m not a good horse to bet on.
I don’t expect much from Univfy, after all, there are a lot of companies out there — from those that make fertility apps to those that do fertility loans — that are trying to cash in on a medical issue. Where there is money to be made, there will be people in there making money. And I don’t begrudge people who have put a lot of time and energy into their education or research or equipment or medication asking for fair pay for their hard work. But what I do mind is when doctors and organizations support companies such as Univfy.
Because we are emotional. Because we would do anything for peace of mind. Because we would do anything to increase our chances at success. And we need good people helping us make good decisions, especially when there are companies out there trying to take advantage of us. Because there is absolutely no reason why people should be shelling out $175 for someone to analyze their chances at IVF success simply by filling out an online form. And I really fear the number of people who may pay for the chance at hope. Because who wouldn’t pay $175 for a dose of hope if they thought that it had the support of respected doctors and organizations? I certainly would.
What is next? College sites that compare your GPA, town, and SAT scores in a database to tell you your chances of getting into the schools on your list? Cancer sites that compare your age, stage of cancer, and smoking history and spits out whether the protocol you’re on really has the 25% chance of working like your doctor says?
I am so angry right now, though relieved to see that my doctor isn’t part of their directory of doctors who “share a vision with Univfy.” Is yours?
Nor did I see Doc Terminus on the list, though I’m sure he’d step right up to be one of their providers.
May 20, 2013 23 Comments