Anyway, working at Target is funner than I thought it'd be. I prefer cashiering, but sales floor is really just moving stuff around. Move things from the back room to the floor, make them look neat, move some things back to the back room, and make labels and the like. Only it's more complicated than that because there are PDAs involved that tell you more than you need to know, but not everything you need to know.
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
In order to promote companies I like, I'm dedicating this post to Annies, a pleasant and happy food vendor that makes bunny shaped organic food. They make non-bunny shaped things, but so far I've had cheddar bunnies (goldfish crackers in the shape of bunnies, only organic and made with whole wheat), and bunny fruit snacks (vegan, gluten-free and organic. Yay for not eating animal bones!). I have found Annies products at the Co-op and Target. You can probably find them in other places too.
Monday, June 28, 2010
I don't have to work tomorrow, so I can properly explain my awesome Pride and non-Prideful but still Pride Weekend where I worked all day.
I left my apartment Friday morning, laden with everything I needed for the weekend, plus a tent, 2 tote bags of St. Olaf Swag, and a sign. Then, I took the bus to downtown Minneapolis, and took the train to Anoka. I arrived about 3 minutes before a storm. Lucky me!
It was scary looking, and its weird to drive in pouring rain, but there was a poor, senseless man on a motorcycle. He wasn't wearing a helmet, and it was raining sheets. He was shielding his eyes from the rain and everything.
Anyway, I went to sleep in my bed at Mom's house, which hasn't been slept in for quite a while (this becomes important later, so remember that).
I got up at 6am, and caught the bus back to Minneapolis, taking everything with me, plus a collapsible chair for us to sit on. The bus driver let me ride the handicap ramp off the bus because my cart was heavy and burdensome. It was kinda fun. Luckily it was a Saturday morning and I was the only person on the bus, so I didn't slow down traffic at all.
Anyway, long story short, I set up the St. Olaf booth, and tabled most of the day, until 5ish, when Teddy came to join me so we could go see Ellis! It was actually a village people concert, but it started raining during the second group, Electric Avenue, so Teddy and I headed to the 90s instead after a couple songs by the third performer, CeCe Peniston. Seeing Ellis was great, though. I lurve her. We invited her to Olaf in October, so she'll be performing at some point that month. Excited!
Anyway, 90s. One of Teddy's friends has good connections, so we got front row seats reserved for the drag show. I love the 90s queens. They're so lively and awesome. Anyway, there were also $3 Bacardi cocktails, so I spent $6 on heaven. Dragonberry and 7up? Awesome. Razz and Sprite? Equally awesome!
So, at 2:30 am, Teddy and I headed back to Northfield. Bed at 3:30, up at 8:30 to shower and go to campus. I noticed as I got ready for bed a strange splotch on my upper thigh. I figured I just scratched myself somehow. The next morning I noticed another one underneath my bra strap by my collar bone. Must just be some skin irritation. I ignored it, and just went to campus.
You see, instead of going to the Pride Parade, I babysat during a wedding for a couple of Ole alums. Another girl and I hung out with 5 kids, ages 17months to 10 years. It was hard to keep them occupied, but apparently 10 year olds are into this thing called Club Penguin. It works. The 17 month old was really fussy, so she occupied herself by crying herself sick all over the other babysitter. Poor dear. At least we got paid $35 for the 2 hours.
After, I went to my first shift of work at Target. I cashiered for 4 hours, and I'm pretty good at it, if I may say so. After, I came home and crashed, dead tired. I noticed a few blotches on my shoulder before I went to bed. Weird. Oh well, right?
I got up this morning for Day 2 of work, and my shoulder and back were covered in red splotchy welts. So I made an appointment for after work (which went well. Theres a lot to remember for salesfloor, but I'm sure I'll get it right eventually). My doctor examined the bumps for a while, in awe over this weird rash.
We eventually decided it was probably some sort of bug bites that my body was not reacting well too. Most likely spiders (you know, from my bed at Moms which I haven't slept in for quite some time? Told you that you should remember it!). So, she wrote me a prescription for a stronger allergy medicine than Target-brand Claritin, and told me to pick up some hydrocortizone for the itching. So far, my sinuses are really clear, but thats the only difference.
Anyway, the lesson learned from this weekend: (1) Pride is awesome, even with rain. (2) Sleep is important. (3) Keep your room clean and spider-free!
Sunday, June 27, 2010
Pride. Little sleep. Work. More work.
While staying at the 90s until 2:30am on Saturday when I had to work from 10-6 on Sunday probably wasn't the best idea, I had such a good time that it was worth the lack of sleep today.
The 9 miles I walked this weekend didn't help.
Anywho, bedtime. I am exhausted.
I love Pride.
Thursday, June 24, 2010
Today, I went to my first day to work at Target!
It was pretty good. Bruce, Riki and I (the other new people) watched videos. Apparently, being Fast, Fun and Friendly are important qualities to emulate. I'm excited because I get to get discounts. I can get 20% off my cell phone bill! And 10% off my purchases (if I get a Target card)! And other stuff, I guess. I haven't look too extensively. I need to sign in on the kiosk thingy on my first shift.
Which is Sunday! Not only do I babysit during a wedding, but I also work for 5.5 hours at Target. Awesome!
It's nice to have a job where I work more than occasionally. Yay! Summer job!
Also, I'm eating a PB sammich with a chocolate bar. Be jealous.
Also, PRIDE is this weekend! I love PRIDE!
Sunday, June 20, 2010
I had some awesome friends come visit me yesterday. So, I decided to make them dinner!
Step 2: Melt chocolate chips, and allow to cool a bit
I made Cheesy Green Casserole and Chocolate Strawberry Pie.
To make Cheesy Green Casserole, you need to have:
3 cups of brown rice, uncooked
2 cloves of garlic (or more!)
1 bunch of greens (I used spinach and dandelion)
4 oz of Cream Cheese
1/2 cup of Cottage Cheese
1 cup packed shredded cheese
Splash of lemon juice
Your choice of herbs (I used a little oregano, but really go with what you like. It's a versatile dish)
Step 1: Cook the brown rice. Preheat oven to 350.
Step 2: While the rice is cooking, remove the stems from the greens, wash thoroughly, and chop into teeny tiny pieces.
Step 3: Chop the onion and garlic, cook in oiled pan on the stove. Add the greens, and cook until the greens are wilted, but not dry.
Step 4: Add cream cheese to greens pan, stir until melted.
Step 5: In a separate bowl, mix cottage cheese with eggs.
Step 6: Mix rice with greens and cream cheese in a large mixing bowl, then add the eggs and cottage cheese and mix. Add lemon juice and herbs here as well.
Step 7: Put in 13x9 pan, cover with shredded cheese. Cover with tinfoil, and bake for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake for an additional 15 minutes.
Serves 6 hungry college students.
As for the pie, you'll need:
1 graham cracker crust
24 oz of cream cheese
1 cup of chocolate chips
Strawberries (the recipe I used called for 4 cups, but I did not use that many. Personal preference)
Step one: Bake the crust for 7 minutes, let cool.
Step 2: Melt chocolate chips, and allow to cool a bit
Step 3: Whip room temperature cream cheese.
Step 4: Whip chocolate into cream cheese until thoroughly mixed. Any cream cheese lumps will make it taste funny.
Step 5: Put cream cheese mix into crust. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Step 6: core strawberries, and cut to bite size. Put on top of pie in a pretty design.
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
A couple years ago at the Minnesota State Fair, I got a free T-shirt from BP.
As you know, BP values profit more than safety, and hasn't acted swiftly to resolve the greatest single human-caused environmental disaster since, Chernobyl. Ergo, BP is evil.
So what should I do with the shirt? I don't want to wear it as is. It implies that I support BP, which I don't. I want to use the shirt to be a metaphor for what BP has done/is doing to the Gulf. Unfortunately, I'm not so arty or symbolically-minded. I need advice!
I could soak it in oil for a while, then wash out the flammable bits and wear it around? That seems a little wasteful, but it would effectively stain the shirt in authentic oil stain. But buying oil for the express purpose of ruining a shirt and wasting the oil itself seems a bit against what I'm trying to accomplish by ruining the shirt.
Maybe I could draw dead birds and sea turtles with black sharpie on the shirt. Or maybe just dye it with black tie dye?
I don't really want to cut the shirt, and I want it to be done sustainably. What do you recommend?
Monday, June 14, 2010
I am not a sports fan.
However, every couple of years, I give in to my inner nationalist and obsessively watch sporting events. Only legitimate world-wide events though. Only the World Cup and the Olympics (even though its only mostly privileged nations who participate, so it's still not really worldwide. The US has dozens of athletes in the Olympics. Where are the dozens of worthy Malawi and Kazakhstan?)
I root for teams arbitrarily. Of course, I root for the US. Also, countries I've been to, like France, Slovenia, and England. Other countries I like because I know people from those countries, like Mexico, Japan or South Korea. Others, I like for political reasons, for example not Serbia or North Korea. I am actively not rooting for them. In most cases, I pick a team and hope it wins. Sometimes, I don't care and just wait to see if one seems to be winning, then I start rooting for them.
In any case, I've been getting up at 6am to watch futbol games. If I care, I stay awake. If I don't, I usually wake up at 10ish to catch the end of the second match. Then I watch again at 1. I don't really care for sports, but I like soccer because it's more subtle than most sports. Of course, at 6:45 am, my appreciation for global subtlety comes second to my love for sleep.
Granted, even with the most sleep, I've only ever watched the Super Bowl twice. The first time was in middle school because I heard the commercials were good. They weren't that great. The second time was this year, because I was in the living room, and my roommate was watching it. It was okay, but I arbitrarily picked a team (I forget what teams were playing, or if the team I was rooting for won or lost).
That is the extent if my interest in sports.
Saturday, June 12, 2010
What is an atheist to do? When atheists decide to get married, who do they have marry them? In Minnesota, and most other states, one must be a minister in order to solemnize a marriage. Now, many of these ministers do have actual congregations, but there are websites where you can become an ordained minister by registering and printing off a certificate.
However, these are only for Christians, or those who claim to be Christian. So, there may be non-denominational ministers, but they are still Christian ministers. Not really what most atheists are looking for in an officiate.
Anyway, I did some research and I found this: the First Church of Atheists. They register people as ministers and thus give atheists what they need to legally officiate weddings, funerals, and any other clergy-necessary ceremonies.
"Church" has taken on a cultural association with Christianity, but "church" means a community of people with similar beliefs. I guess it makes sense, and I have no issues with organized religion (or non-religion), but it's still a little weird to have a church of Atheists to me. But, I suppose that by organizing as a church, it provides legal recognition for atheists, and allows ceremonies that normally would be legally religious (ew...) to be legally secular.
I approve. Now, should I become a minister? It'd be fun, and an interesting and educational experience for me, and I'd be able to provide a community service for other non-religious people. And it'd be a source of income, as becoming a minister is free, and usual charges for officiating a wedding is $300.
But, what responsibilities do ministers have? Would I have to offer some pre-marital counseling? Marital counseling? Pre-nuptial agreements? Funeral stuff? What do ministers do at funerals anyway? I am certainly not qualified to offer counseling. But I suppose I could work with local secular counseling services.
Maybe I'll register when I've graduated and I have time to do it. And I've had time to convince myself to/not to do it.
Friday, June 11, 2010
I've been thinking about money a lot lately.
Between tuition for next year, my class in Thailand, my trip to Japan, needing a new computer (and wanting a good one), and preparing for life after Olaf.
To add to the money stress, I've been watching the Home and Garden channel between things I actually want to watch, where they show a lot of people buying their first homes and renovating their homes.
I want to buy a home! Haha. My ideal living space would be a spacious condo in Minneapolis with 10 or so acres of heavily-wooded lakefront property out in the middle of nowhere in northern Minnesota, on which I would build a nice cabin.
I guess I'll just have to wait until (1) I find a good job, (2) I get all my student loans paid off and (3) I have my future settled.
Maybe I should just stay in the moment: I get to live in an awesome house in a few months, I live in a nice apartment, and I know I'll be able to find an affordable place to live after I graduate. I don't need to worry about whether I'll be able to afford a $300,000 mortgage, or be able to afford to build my own cabin. Or worry about whether or not I'll have a cushy enough job to afford the life I want.
I am 21. I am now a senior in college. (inner tangent: shiiittt....) I am privileged and fortunate to have a lot of my life easily obtained. I know I will be able to find some sort of work that will support me, even if it isn't my ideal career path.
I will be okay, and I will likely excel. Awesome.
Thanks for the pep talk!
Thursday, June 10, 2010
Last night at 8pm, I really wanted chocolate mousse. I looked up a good recipe that used ingredients that I had already. Luckily, Julia Childs recipe had ingredients that I had on hand.
I just had one bowl of it. Take it from me, it is amazing! Not super rich or super bitter like many mousse recipes. It was light, fluffy and sweet. I would even make it again, and I hate making things that are ridiculously fussy. Mousse is the fussiest of the fussy.
So, in order to make this delicious mousse that serves 3-4, you will need:
3 oz of semi-sweet baking chocolate
3 oz butter (yes, use butter! no margarine! no oil! butter! lots of it!)
1/4 cup water
2 eggs, separated
1 T rum
1/3 cup of sugar, for the egg yolks
1 T sugar, for the egg whites
1 pinch of salt
1 t of vanilla extract
Stuff you need:
At least 1 double boiler, I used 2. Well, 2 pots with metal mixing bowls over it, because I don't own a double boiler. :)
A whisk (or hand mixer. A hand mixer makes this go 100 billion times faster)
Prep work: get a large bowl and put ice water in it. Sounds weird, I know, but it is important.
Step 1: Melt chocolate, butter in a double boiler on a low simmer (or, if you don't own a double boiler, like me, a pot with water covered with a metal mixing bowl), and add water. When mixed thoroughly, remove from heat and make it wait patiently until you use it again.
Step 2: In another double boiler (or a different metal bowl over a pot of water), barely simmering, whisk the egg yolks, rum, and sugar until thick and almost mayonnaise-y. I strongly suggest using a hand mixer. I whisked by hand for about 10 minutes before I lost patience and whipped out the hand mixer. 3 minutes later, I had thick, almost mayonnaise-y egg yolk mixture.
Step 3: Put the yolk bowl in the bowl of ice water (make sure the water doesn't get in), and keep whisking/mixing until its even thicker and more mayonnaise-y. Fold the chocolate in with the egg yolk mix. It looks really cool. Seriously, I spent a good minute or two admiring the brown chocolate and yellow eggs mix together.
Anyway, Step 4: In yet another bowl, use a different whisk, clean your whisk, or clean your mixer attachments, to attack the shit out of the egg whites with the pinch of salt in it. Make sure your whisks are clean, or else your egg whites won't fluff. Oils and fat in the egg whites will make the egg whites from foamy awesomeness. Anyway, when its mostly fluffed (but not stiff), add the other tablespoon of sugar. Mix it in a bit more, than add the vanilla. Mix it moar! MOAR!
Step 5: Fold 1/3 of the egg whites into the chocolaty egg yolks. Then fold the rest in, but not too much otherwise the egg whites will be less fluffy.
Step 6: Put in 3-4 bowls or cups or whatever you want to serve it in, and chill in the fridge for 4 hours at least. They can stay chilled for 4 days.
There is raw egg in it, so you are at risk for salmonella, but the risk is fairly low. I mean, how much freakin' cookie dough have you eaten? How many bowls of cake batter have you licked clean? We've all eaten a ton of raw eggs and we're all alive.
Anyway, it was a little on the sweet side, so I had it with a cup of instant coffee thing from Starbucks. It was gross. Don't drink it. I added 2 T of sugar and it was still pretty gross. There's better coffee than that. Or even tea works. Something bitter to even out the sweetness. I love sweet desserts, and I love sweet desserts and bitter drinks together.
Also, eggs are weird. They get take on so many forms and are just really weird. I mean, they super slimy in the shell. If you whip them, they turn into really foamy. If you fry them, they turn rubbery. If you pour water over them, they bubble. They're so versatile and creepy.
Anyway, enjoy your mousse. I hope you have a hand mixer or immersion blender.
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
This morning at 8:20 am, Eric the HR Guy at Target offered me a cashier position at Target. Yay!
I don't start for another two weeks, but I am grateful to have a job this summer. I was worried about money, but now I can relax a bit. I will be paid money, and hopefully a lot of it.
I can pay my rent, bills, buy groceries, a new computer, and then save the rest for my trip to Thailand and Japan next winter. : )
This makes me happy.
Monday, June 7, 2010
Well, that's over.
I took my GRE today. I did okay. I did how I thought I would do. I got at 570 on the verbal and a 710 on the quantitative. I have to wait 2 weeks to get my writing scores back, but so far I'm around the 75th percentile, which isn't bad. I needed to get above the 55th percentile to be above the average score for the Humphrey Institute. Glad my school of choice isn't that competitive in terms of GRE.
Instead, I get to worry about my lack of experience. Goody. : )
If I don't get in, I'll join the Peace Corps or Americorps for a couple years, then try to find a real job. Or just try to find a real job. Or find a crappy job and an internship that might turn into a real job.
The nice thing about my potential degree program is that most people go mid-career, or after a few years of working, so I am more likely to go back to get my degree than someone who wants to go to med school or something. Med students need to know a lot of information, and if you're out of school for 10 years, you've probably forgotten most of it.
In any case, I at Chipotle, my favorite fast food restaurants. Someone wearing a burqa just walked in. Like, a full burqa, not just hijab. I haven't seen one of those in person before. That's cool. Props to her for having the courage to wear that, you know?
Sorry, tangent. Anyway, the future is far away and doesn't need a lot of detailed thought right now. Next week, I'll start working on my personal statement. : )
Thursday, June 3, 2010
Hokso. I LOVE Indian food. However, both of the Indian restaurants in town here sell their cheapest entrees at $7-15, and of course I have to buy samosas and naan, which add another $8. And I enjoy buying two entrees, to diversify my meal and to get as much deliciousness as I can.
So... I've been trying to learn to cook my own Indian food, so I can control what goes into it, and to save money. So far, they haven't been very successful. Mostly kind of watery and while I put a lot of spices in, I can't really taste them.
But! This time I tried a new recipe, with a bit more work involved.
1 cup uncooked rice (I made brown, but basmati would probably be more authentic)
2 cans of diced tomatoes, drained
4 cloves of garlic
1 can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
Plenty of Canola Oil
some of the following spices: curry powder, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, cumin, coriander, cayenne pepper, chili powder (I just put in a few to several dashes if I wanted that spice to be more present)(also, why do they all start with C?)
Anyway, make the rice at some point. I made brown rice, so I did that first because it takes forever.
Then, finely finely chop the onion and garlic (or chop not so fine and just put it in the blender or food processor)(I need a blender if you want to buy me something). Then, drain the tomatoes, and actually, squeeze them out too. You're going to want a rather thick paste. Mix your squeezed out tomatoes with your super fine onion and garlic. Like, really mix it. I smooshed it together in my makeshift mortar and pestle (aka a bowl and a glass) to mash the tomatoes in a bit more.
Anyway, heat your oil on med-low into a pan (I put a lot in. Just because I like it that way. You could go crazy and use clarified butter too if'n you want). Then put your tomato mixture in the pan, and let it cook for a while. I added the cinnamon, ginger and cardamom here, but really, I have no reason why I did that.
After letting that fry for about 5-10 minutes (stirring it occasionally), I added the other spices, and let that sit for about 10 more minutes (this is a good time to do some dishes). Add the chickpeas, mix it together. Put the cover on, and let it stew for 10 minutes.
Serve over rice. Maybe a dollop of yogurt on it. I thought it was pretty good, but the leftovers were a little dry.
Wednesday, June 2, 2010
I have decided that I will, in fact, have a graduation party next year. It's terribly far off, I know, but I like to plan ahead. I don't care how pretentious it may seem. I have worked hard (harder than I did in high school!), and next year, I deserve a party.
Why are college grad parties so unpopular? I don't get it. I deserve and need a party way more than I did when I graduated high school.
My only problem is where to have it. Should it be in the cities, so it's more central so more people can come? Or should it near home? Or school?
I do not know. Any opinions?
A friend of mine on campus called me tonight, as I sat on the couch, recovering from an intense walk earlier in the day (and by recovering, I mean eating chocolate Malt-o-meal!). She was moving her stuff from the 9th floor of Larson Hall to the 8th floor of Mohn Hall and had to move by tomorrow morning, and would I help her?
Well, considering I was just sitting on the couch, and she's a good friend, I said "Sure!"
Ohmaigawd she has soooo much stuff. We probably moved 20 storage bins and 10 giant garbage bags and several boxes and 2 mini fridges and other stuff. Luckily, she has no furniture, there are elevators, she has an SUV and found a dolly somewhere. Plus, she took me to Perkins afterwards.
Totally worth it. : )
5 cups of coffee and 3 french toast for a couple hours of going up and down an elevator? Not bad at all!
By the way, I will not be going to bed anytime soon. Why did I drink 5 cups of coffee at 11pm again? hahahaha. Good times.
Anyway, about the intense walk... I went to the grocery store to pick up some things (remembered everything but malt-o-meal and wild rice!), thinking it wouldn't rain until 3 or 4. Nope, it thundered and started raining at 12:30, right when I left the store.
"Oh no!" I thought, "I left the window open right by the power strip and my laptop!" (dumb, I know). I started rushing home, with a backpack full of canned goods, and two tote bags full of food. Easier said than done. Luckily, it didn't rain all that much until the end of my walk, when I had given up rushing, and was trying to cool down. No water reached the power strip or my laptop. Thank the wind currents!
Also, I realized that I've only eaten breakfast food for the past couple days. I had eggs, hash browns, facon, green beans and yogurt for lunch yesterday, French toast for dinner, a PB sandwich for breakfast, Malt-o-Meal for lunch today, and French toast for dinner again tonight. Goodness. I should really stop typing this now, but I HAVE SO MUCH ENERGY!!!!!
You know where this energy could be productive? Studying for my GRE. Or playing Pokemon. Hmmm........... I'm starting to get nervous for my GRE. I take the test on Monday. Luckily I'm taking it early enough where I can take it again if I suck ass. But I am trying not to suck ass because the test costs $160, which is ridiculous, but less so than the test prep classes, which cost $500. I think I'll skip the classes and study on my own. I'll just read the dictionary, or maybe learn Latin and Greek this week. That'll help with the vocabulary.
OOH! I bought my ticket to go see the Village People today. They're playing at the Twin Cities Pride festival this year, and tickets are only $10! And one of my favorite singers is playing too, Ellis. She's an Ole alum who is awesome and funny! She's also gluten intolerant, in case you were wondering. And she has the best laugh ever. Her music is pretty kickass too.
By the way, all of this was written in like, 10 minutes.