Thursday, June 30, 2011

Kansas City

This past weekend, I made a trip to Kansas City to visit Naomi and her fiance, Bruce. And while we did some other fun things (wedding dress shopping, regular shopping, dog snuggling), the food was my favorite part. Probably not surprising.

One night, Bruce grilled up some pork chops, peppers with cheese and one very special pepper with an egg inside. It looked really awesome and I kind of want to try to make something similar, even though it probably won't be as good. This is as close as I can find in recipe form and it's making my mouth water. Must have it.

We also had seriously delicious barbecue (though officially as a Texan, I can't say it was better than ours) at this restaurant in a gas station. Yes, in a gas station. Only part of its appeal. It's called Oklahoma Joe's and I would highly recommend it if you're ever in the area.

I should've taken some pictures of all the delicious food I ate but my hands (not to mention my mouth) were full. Sorry!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Boy meets girl

Joe and Libby met at a USO event. For their first date, they met in downtown Little Rock and decided to go to a talkie. Ok, I don't know if they're old enough to call them talkies, but it's more nostalgic and whimsical if I imagine that they did.

 I think it's a little funny that they took this picture themselves. We've obviously gotten better at it over the years.

They had some ice cream, went to the movie and had a great time.

But, unknown to Daddy Joe, Mimi was supposed to meet her dad in the shoe department of a department store at 4 p.m. They got out of the movie after 5, so Mimi decided to take Daddy Joe to meet her father...on their first date....when her dad's probably already mad. He's a brave man, my grandfather.

Luckily, Mimi's dad didn't get mad but had just been very worried. And Daddy Joe must've made a good first impression. He told me, "I guess I did okay since I got a hunting dog named after me!"

Joe, Jr.

They were married in February 1946.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Wall-inspired invitation

I've been thinking about weddings a lot lately because I'm going to Kansas City this weekend to visit my best friend Naomi and help her start the fun process of planning her wedding (it's probably obvious I've never had a wedding if I think it sounds fun to plan one).

Last week I saw a wall on designsponge that a couple made from salvaged wood and it inspired me to design this wedding invitation.

The wall that inspired me.

I kind of doubt Naomi will be using this coral color scheme, so if anyone else wants it, let me know. I might even consider changing the names for you.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

G.I. Joe

Today is Daddy Joe's 88th birthday! I can't imagine all he's seen. 

So in honor of his birthday (and because I love these photos), here he is in his Army days. I think most of these were taken in the Philippines somewhere around 1946.

"Muscle Man Moore" was written on the back of this photo.

No big deal, just playing with a machete.

"Joe and his 'gal pals'" on the back of this photo, in my grandma's handwriting. I wonder if she was jealous.

Happy birthday, Daddy Joe. I bet you've got another 88 in you.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day

Happy Father's Day to my favorite dad! The one who taught me to be generous, argumentative, quick-witted and strong.

The photo that comes up when he calls. Good motivation to talk to him.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Skipping work

That's a fine head of hair, right? I can't get over it.

Several summers in a row during grade school, Daddy Joe's family managed church camp at Petit Jean Mountain outside Little Rock, Arkansas. Joe, his brothers and sisters had KP duty, general cleaning and odd jobs around the camp to help out.

One time Joe decided to skip out on his work and took a shortcut through the woods to take a dip in a swimming hole. But on his merry way, he stepped on a black snake. The idea kind of gives me the shivers (or maybe it's this cold Starbucks, but either way, I'm creeped out). Luckily, the snake had its mouth full of rabbit at the time. And Daddy Joe never skipped out of that chore again. 

I'm seeing a common theme here with my grandparents: avoiding work, shortcuts through woods, snakes. Meant to be, I guess.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Daddy Joe

My grandpa, whom we call Daddy Joe, is the son of a preacher man and is one of six children in his family. I just wanted to post a couple current pictures so when I post the old ones, you have something to compare them to. Spoiler: he had lots of hair!

Probably 5 or 6 years ago

At Amy's wedding 2.5 years ago

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Hunting dogs

My grandma must've had a lot of boyfriends, because her dad had a pack of hunting dogs named after them. A whole pack! I wonder how that made the boys feel.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Sweet sleeper

Jonas turned a month old a couple days ago and he's as cute as ever. Especially when he's sleeping and not crying.

Driving her dad's truck

Do our feet get bigger with each generation? Because mine are twice that size.

Mimi learned to drive her dad's truck when she was 13 or 14. He'd put her behind the wheel and let her drive loads of strawberries to the market. It was a dirt road with deep ruts so all she had to do was stay in the ruts, kind of like those cars at Six Flags.

Then when she was a little older, her dad let her drive the truck to town with a girl friend. They, being silly girls, took a shortcut through the woods and ran over a sapling tree. It got stuck between the truck and bumper so it couldn't move. Lucky for her, there just happened to be an axe in the back of the pickup so she chopped the sapling down (I would've loved to see that), got the truck loose and went on her way.

A couple months later, one of her brothers got married and took the truck. They got a flat tire and he couldn't figure out what had caused it; there was a strange angled slash in the tire. So she confessed. I probably would've just let the mystery go unsolved.

Monday, June 13, 2011

NYT CrossWord of the Day

My favorite part of Mondays has got to be the New York Times crossword puzzle (I can actually finish it!). Though I guess I can't really differentiate Mondays from other days of the week in my current jobless situation. But still. It's gratifying.

My favorite clue today: City midway between Austin and Dallas!

Other good words for when I create my own NYT crossword (Okay, okay. I like to set unattainable goals. A (nerdy) girl can dream, right?): aioli, Otoe and golfer Aoki.

Friday, June 10, 2011

3 summers ago, 3

June 20, 2008
Jane's mom rolled her eyes. It was the same eye-roll Jane had given her between the ages of 12 and 19. Now her mom was giving it back to her. It said she was stupid. It said she should know better. It said she shouldn't have told her mom about getting back together with Eli.

"It's your life, Jane."

She was patronizing her. Jane had thrown that line out there during those same 7 eye-rolling years. "It's my life, Mom." Now she realized it really was her life, and she wasn't sure she was ready for that responsibility. Maybe her mom was right about him. Or maybe Eli was right about them. Or maybe she was just looking for someone to blame for whatever came out of her decision.

All she really knew was that her mom and Eli had at least agreed at one point, more or less. "You deserve better than him anyway," her mom had told her just after Eli broke up with her the second, most recent time. One of the reasons Eli had cited for the break-up was that she deserved better than him. Just because they both knew it, didn't make it right, did it?

Jane thought about it as she waited for Eli to pick her up for dinner. She sat in the tall leather chair in the living room, the one that gave her a view of the street allowing her to see him arrive and meet him at the door to avoid unnecessary chit-chat with her parents. She waited ten, twenty, thirty minutes, making sure she didn't get too comfortable and mess up the hair she'd spent too much time fixing. After 35 minutes, she started losing hope. After 40, her hair did, too.

Later that night, when a drunk text came from him explaining he'd gone out with friends, Jane was still recovering from the I-told-you-so dancing in her mother's eyes all evening. She deserved better than him. Just because she knew it, didn't make it right, did it?

3 summers ago, 2

June 5, 2008
"Was that really necessary?" she asked, trotting after him.
He looked back at the crowd and the flattened man he had left in the center of it. His hand was throbbing. He tried to shake it out.
"I had to do it, to protect you. You look like a whore," he thought to himself. 
"You look like a whore," he said.
She kicked some gravel up so it hit his calves. No one knew how to make her mad like he did. She knew he was probably right. That guy at the bar wouldn't have talked to her like that if she didn't look like she was giving it away.
She tugged on the bottom of her skirt as she shuffled behind him. He was breathing heavily, angrily. His passion both scared her and stirred something in her. She had tried to get him, his anger out of her life. But it was that same passion, even when it turned to anger, that kept drawing her back to him.
He had slowed down enough that she was able to catch up. The hum of the bar crowd was barely audible now.
"I'm sorry," she said.
She grabbed his hand. The blood was drying. She wasn't sure whose it was. The throbbing in his hand pulsed through hers.
"I'm sorry, too. Let's go home," he thought to himself.
"Let's go home," he said.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

3 summers ago

Almost exactly three years ago, I was really bored and wanted to force myself to write more. So I made a blog and told myself I was going to write something short and fiction-y every day. Of course, I was too lazy to really commit to it and told no one it existed so I couldn't be held accountable. Thus, there are 3 entries.

But lately I've wanted to get back into writing, so I looked it up for some inspiration. And I'm going to post the entries for inspiration, or just to be self-indulgent. Hey, it's my blog and I'll do what I want.

June 4, 2008
"Great to meet you."
"Same here," the lesbian said.
The lesbian had just interviewed me briefly for a job I wouldn't get. I could tell she was a lesbian, even on the phone. She sounded laid back and cool, which are often symptoms of lesbianism. When I met her, she was butch- the kind of butch you only achieve through years of practice. Straight girls can't have that kind of look by accident.
I walked away trying to act as cool as the lesbian was. I couldn't run out like I knew I wouldn't get the job so I casually looked at the books on the way out. I picked one up that had an attractive cover and glanced at the summary on the back.
"Something something something girl's coming-of-age story something something."
I put the book down quickly, embarrassed that I'd been fooled into picking it up. The last things I want to read about are periods and teenage angst.
I finished out the row for coolness' sake and walked out of the store, back into the heat of my wasted summer.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Horseback riding

Now that I've scanned a few old photos of Mimi and Daddy Joe (and several more wrong that I'll have to rescan), I thought I'd get back to some of their stories. This one is short and sweet. In fact, I'm mostly into this post for the photo. Wasn't everyone just so much cuter back then?

This is Mimi and a few friends (I guess) around 1945. She's the second from the left.

When Mimi was little, she learned how to ride a horse bareback, but she was only allowed to do it in the backyard. There was one major problem, though: the clothesline. It didn't matter what she did, she couldn't keep the horse from going under the clothesline and knocking her off. I don't know if it's just because she's my grandmother, but for some reason, imagining this kind of makes me laugh. Or maybe I'm just mean. 

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Word of the day

Solipsism, found in The New York Times Magazine at least twice today.
Definition: The view or theory that the self is all that can be known to exist.

I think I'm just growing out of my solipsist phase, and let me tell you, it's not fun.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Uke yearnings

From Monsieur Gordon on flickr

So I've been wanting a ukulele since I spent a day at my internship listening to the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain (seriously, check them out on YouTube if you've never heard a ukulele orchestra). Oh, also this cover of MGMT's "Kids." Basically, I think ukuleles are awesome.

And now I finally have one! Well, temporarily while my sister has a cuter ( and gassier) ukulele-sized bundle to occupy her time. And I love it. I've got a couple songs in the works, but I need more suggestions for good uke songs. Got any?

I will also take any advice/encouragement about searching for jobs. My enthusiasm is wearing thin!