Saturday, September 1, 2012

One Month

Exactly one month ago at this time of night, Ben and I were lying on the wood floor of our apartment, surrounded by boxes and completely exhausted. We had just finished moving the entire U-Haul's worth of boxes up two flights of fire-escape stairs, after which we had to find a place to park a pickup truck with a U-Haul attached. This is hard to do at any time in Chicago, but particularly at night, when everyone is home from work and parked. There was no air-conditioning in the apartment and we had been working our butts off for hours, but we were so tired that we both passed out on the floor and slept all night.

That was our very first night in this apartment, and it seems like much more than a month has passed. The apartment feels homey now, and we have furniture and I have lots and lots of kitchen supplies, and everything is where it should be. The only thing we have left to do is hang the pictures on the walls. I start school on Wednesday, which is comforting and terrifying all at once. I think it will really help to finally get a feel for what my daily schedule will be like--and it's so much lighter than my last semesters of undergrad that it seems like nothing in comparison. Operation Barista is still underway, I plan to fill out several more applications over the weekend, and hopefully someone will get back to me soon.

In other news: I kept my promise to myself yesterday, and knitted all day long--I made dinner in the slow-cooker, so I was free to knit all the way until it was time to eat. I knitted a little after dinner as well, and then I transferred Esperanza onto a larger circular cable so things wouldn't be so crowded. I'm well into Chart Three now, and she's getting to be pretty substantial:

I don't know if you can tell, but she's taking up my entire lap.

I'm feeling pretty confident that I'll be able to complete her in time for VKL. Now I just have to figure out how I'm going to block her! The reason my last few shawls are still unblocked is because I don't have enough blocking mats. There is a place near the apartment that sells the bigger interlocking mats, for use in classrooms, etc. I might pick some up once I have a job, but if not I'll have to improvise. I plan to knit the extension of the pattern that MMario has written, so this shawl is going to be pretty big. I'm not even sure where I'm going to put it while blocking. I was planning on blocking it in the middle of the floor overnight, but "The Rift" is gradually making that impossible.

"The Rift," as I have un-affectionately named it, is a large disturbance in the wood floor of our apartment. It is hard to describe--imagine the way volcanoes are formed on the edges of tectonic plates when they push together. It basically looks like we have a tiny mountain range running through our apartment. When we first arrived it didn't look like much, but in the month we've been here it's grown dramatically. We had repairmen in to look at it the other day, and they had surprised faces. When experienced repairmen have surprised faces, I get nervous. Based on what they said to Ben, they have no idea what's causing The Rift--but it's bad and they're going to have to Work On It. I'm assuming that means ripping up part of the floor in our bedroom/living room/dining room. I'm trying not to think about that too hard right now. I'm going to distract myself by talking about what I originally planned to post about--pizza!

At long last, I made pizza from scratch today!

Mmmmmmmmm. It was so good! Pizza is one of my favorite foods, and I hadn't had any since a while before we moved, which means it had been well over a month! I told Ben that being able to make it from scratch makes me feel like I have superpowers. I decide that I would like pizza for dinner, and I make it come into being using only my skills and basic household ingredients! It is glorious. I can't wait to make more! Conveniently, the recipe I used from Joy the Baker makes enough dough for two pizzas, so there is a cute little ball of dough waiting in my freezer for the next time I want to make pizza! This time, I used chicken that I grilled on the George Foreman, bell peppers, tomatoes, Mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses. Next time, I'm going for pepperoni and pineapple, because that's my favorite. But, the possibilities are endless, and now we can have pizza on a regular basis, despite our limited budget! Another great thing about it is that I know exactly what's on each pizza, and how much of it, so we can eat pizza without being careless about portions. Each pizza uses a fraction of a bag of flour, less than a half can of sauce and as little as 3/4 cup of shredded cheese, to start with. Flour and all of our desired toppings can be acquired at the Dollar Tree where we buy our basics--which means we can both eat pizza until we pop at a price of about $3 a pizza or less! This is excellent news, people. EXCELLENT news.

Anyways, I'm going to go knock out a few more rows on Esperanza before I hit the hay. Maybe I'll come up with a list of topping combinations while I'm at it...

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