Friday, November 28, 2008

89 Hours

Corner of my pay stub for the week of November 17 thru 23.

89 Hours. I'm pretty sure that's a personal record. The crazy part is that 76 of those hours happened from Monday to Friday. The remaining 13 hours were spread over the weekend.

By far the hardest day was Friday. I was already tired from the 57 hours I'd worked over the four previous days. I thought the worst was behind me (us, really - Dwight ended up with 95 hours for the week). But I was wrong. By 2:10 am, I couldn't look at my monitor without feeling overwhelmingly nauseous. So I punched out (yes, I punch a clock), leaned back in my chair, closed my eyes and dozed.

Dwight was still working on his project, the one that had to get done. By 3:15, he decided it was time to go and the rest of the job would have to wait. We went home, stumbled into bed and passed out, only to be awoken 40 minutes later by a call from work. Dwight had to drive back to work to let someone in then came right back home. We slept until 10:30 which is crazy late for us, but clearly not in context. We worked only about 5 or so hours and just had to go home to crash. We got a good night's sleep and felt much better on Sunday.

We've been going like crazy ever since - not the ridiculously long hours - but long enough. I'm looking forward to a break, I just don't know when that's going to come.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Sweet Taste of Victory

This is how I kept myself occupied on election night. I prepared the dough the night before but did the rolling, cooking and decorating on Tuesday. I found a recipe for the cookies on and would definitely use it again. Check out the recipe and read the reviews here.

I did a lot of looking around to find the right frosting. I knew I could make royal icing, but wasn't keen on the idea of using egg whites. I found what looked like a good alternative on allrecipes while looking for the cookie recipe. I also searched for decorating techniques and found a similar frosting recipe from a youtube video on how to "paint" cookies. There are 4 parts to the youtube series and I found them really helpful. Check them out if you're interested in having some fun with sugar cookies.

I didn't end up using a paint brush for these. I used quart size ziplock bags and piped the frosting instead. I used the toothpicks to spread around the frosting to fill in the shapes. The frosting self-levels, so you don't have to be too precise (clearly I wasn't!). I'm excited to give these recipes another go and refine the techniques. Be warned—the frosting is incredibly sweet!

Frosting (pulled from comments on youtube video):

2 lb. bag of powdered sugar
1 teaspoon salt
4 teaspoons vanilla (use clear if possible to keep icing white)
2 Tablespoons milk
6-10 Tablespoons water (start with 6 and add as necessary to achieve the consistency that you want)
2 Tablespoons Light Corn Syrup

Mix together until smooth. Divide and add food coloring as desired.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Now the waiting begins

I've done my part. My vote has been cast, or was at least filled out on the ballot. The ballot reading machine wasn't working, so now I'm a bit paranoid that it's not going to be counted. 

It was encouraging to see so many people in line. Polls open at 6 am so Dwight and I were there around 5:50 am. We emerged from the building at 6:17, so no complaints about the wait. Less than 30 minutes is fantastic, considering what I've been hearing about early voting lines. I've heard that some places have more early votes than were cast on election day in the last general election – that's amazing and exciting. 

Now the waiting and nail biting begins. I'm hopeful but still worry that I'll be disappointed yet again. 

Monday, November 3, 2008

Doing a Double Take

Teachers at Hawthorne Elementary School were doing double takes all day. Folks at Kroger stared a bit when someone kind of familiar stopped in. Pictures were snapped. Fingers were pointed. And Lisa had a blast.

My sister dressed as Sarah Palin for Halloween and did a bang up job, if I do say so myself. Her husband bought a McCain mask and the two of them were the talk of the trick-or-treaters as they drove two of their three kids around the neighborhood on their four wheeler.

Did they have fun? You betcha. Wink.
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