Monday, October 31, 2011

Bloated dead-finger cookies.

Nothing says Halloween treats quite like these delicious (yet disgusting) shortbread finger cookies.
I made some to take to our fundraiser at work. You might think that dead-finger cookies wouldn't go over well at the Washington State Senate, but let you tell you what...these cookies sold out pretty fast. I like them because they aren't too sweet, and they are just gross enough to be great.

I got the recipe from the book The Secret Life of Food.  There are some other fun recipes, but this one is by far the best. The fingernails are almond slices, and they look all cracked and gross (but great).

I also carved this pumpkin at work for our fundraiser.
It was decided that the pumpkin looked cautiously optimistic.

In other news, I'm done knitting one sock. I'll post them once I'm done with the other. I bet you can't wait!

Friday, October 28, 2011

you are afraid of the dark

Another poetry reading tonight! I think they aways come in pairs. My dear friend, Maya Zeller, will be reading from her collection, Rust Fishand the lovely and talented  Kathryn Nuernberger will read from her collection, Rag & Bone. Since I'm in such a poetry mood tonight, I thought I'd share one of Kate's poems with you. It seems quite appropriate given the stark and spooky feeling that the end of October brings...


You are afraid of the dark,
for which you blame the raccoons,
or more to the point, your father,
who took you and your mother
into the night with a flashlight
and shotgun, then left
with both, while you held
her shaking hand. You
would follow your father
to the end of the world,
those distant birch woods
where raccoons rustle
and flash their green eyes.
His gun was firing
into the persimmon trees
and the rain of leaves and ripe fruit
fell farther and farther,
until only the crackle
of his shots and the distant baying
of the hounds could be heard.
The raccoons came then
to hiss all around:
he left you, he left you,
and now you are ours.

Rag & Bone may be purchased here

Rust Fish may be purchased here

Off to the reading!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Brief Musical Interlude: Jarvis Cocker

Since writing about Jarvis Cocker at Faber & Faber I just can't stop watching him on youtube. It's madness, sheer and complete madness! Won't you please join me?

sturdy as potatoes

Tonight I'm attending a reading organized by one of my dear friends, Maya. It's been a while since I've gone to a literary reading, so I'm quite excited! Also, anticipating all the great fiction, nonfiction, and poetry I'm going to hear reminds me of this awesome series of poetry books by Faber & Faber.

Based in Britain, Faber & Faber has been publishing poetry heavyweights for almost a century.  T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, W.H. Auden, Sylvia Plath, Ted Hughes, and Philip Larkin all have collections under the F&F imprint. Pretty impressive poet roundup. Plus, they just appointed Jarvis Cocker as their newest Editor-at-Large. How rad is that? I mean, do you see U.S. publishers making those kinds of moves? Nope. 



Aren't they lovely? Don't you want them all on your bookshelf? If you have a little time today,
I suggest you pay a visit to Faber & Faber's:
or swell blog, The Thought Fox

P.S. This post's title is taken from Plath's Poems, Potatoes.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I've been slacking, but I'm not a slacker.

Since I've been back from Vacation 2011, I really have been slacking off in the blog department. I can't seem to get caught up with anything since vacation. I feel like I owe some kind of explanation, especially to Christine because she's been the sole blogger for the last 2 weeks.
Just to let everyone know, things have been happening.

1). Homework--lots of it. Lots of reading too.

Peanut has been making it really hard to get work done.
The colder it gets, the more clingy she gets.

2). I've been knitting some socks.

The pattern is called "Chain of Hearts."
I would probably called it "V-sock" (but not "V" as in "vagina").

3). I had good intentions about blogging this past weekend, but Sunday night something traumatic happened with a deer, a fence, and the City of Olympia Police Department. Let's just say that I'm still not over it, and it occupies my dreams (in a bad way). If you don't want to see a gross picture, leave our blog now.

This has seriously caused me a major setback. I wonder if I can make a claim against the City for grief counseling...something to think about.

Anyway, I've booked a ticket to visit Sister Monika in Burbank in about a week. I am oh-so-very excited!!!!

I also just found this picture of a cupcake called "The Amy Winehouse" from a food cart in Portland. We got these a couple of years ago. I wonder if they stopped selling them after she drank herself to death...? At the time I also wondered if a 5 year-old kid ordered one, would they leave the straw and powder off?

It was delicious.

kitty in the window

Someone sat in the bedroom window today. 

Its Matilda! 

Monday, October 24, 2011

pencil proof

Catherine brought me this pencil from Rosenburg Slot in Denmark. (Slot = castle.)

There's some major pencil collecting in the Nicolai family. Catherine is basically the duchess of pencils, but I'm no slouch in the pencil department either. Still, there comes a point where you look at the canisters of pristine unsharpened pencils and think, Madness! What am I going to do with all these pencils featuring a glow-in-the-dark map of the solar system? Actually, that's not the best example, because I need all those glow-in-the-dark solar system pencils...for obvious reasons. But when Catherine gave me this pencil,
she said, You better sharpen this and use it. It was all very threatening.

So, I broke out the duck

And made short work of that unsharpened pencil.


Sunday, October 23, 2011

the red & the black

A Moment's Shelter by Steven James Morris 

I'm captivated by these prints from Steven James Morris. The sharp-edged graphics and limited color palette make these images pop like whoa. They're perfect for the season...a little Halloween fairy tale dread, a little stark winter wonderland, and a lot of yes please, I would like to own these. 

Uh-oh, a rhyme slipped in there. Totally unintentional, I assure you. 

Finer Living in a Lower Heaven by Steven James Morris

Pack of Wolves Running Through the Forest by Steven James Morris

Waves on Winter Rolling by Steven James Morris

A Reception of Accident with the Woodland King's Court
by Steven James Morris

Many of these prints are taken from or inspired by a graphic novel Morris is working on. Cool, huh? His illustrations have also graced the covers of several publications by Dark Horse Comics.
Um, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, anyone? I'm looking at you, KB.
You can see more by Steven Morris on his
etsy store

Saturday, October 22, 2011

urchin business

Monika promised me a trip to Malibu expressly to harvest recently deceased sea treasures. 
Yes, I am talking about sea urchins. 

We each filled a large ziplock bag with these beauts.
Large and small, they were everywhere.

And because we were really only concerned with urchins,
we didn't spend too much time looking at other, like the ocean.

Or this stellar sandstone formation.

Ok, we spent a little time, but we were way more concerned with the urchin intake.
You know, into the ziplock bag, into our purses. Yes, a purse full of urchins. Two purses, actually.
And all on the sly. Ben was none too pleased when we unveiled our urchin bounty and then proceeded to set them out in the front yard to "dry"--a process which mostly involves being swarmed by the giantest flies you'll ever in your long life see. Also, the smell is something I will never forget. Let me tell you, we Nicolai girls have smelled a lot of dead things in our time, but sea urchins may just take the cake as the deadest smelling things ever. Yowzers. Seriously, yowzers. 

These are my urchins at Mom's house in Tacoma. They are "drying" on the back porch.
They made the plane trip home double-ziplocked inside my purse.
Bruno ran away when I let him smell one. Smart cat. 

Friday, October 21, 2011


Sometimes you need to send a little love to one of your best girls. In this case, Abbie! A care package requires a bit of thought, but as I wondering what might make Abbie smile, I just couldn't get 6th grade off my mind. Of course, a bff package inspired by middle school nostalgia! So, I dug out my embroidery floss and Sharpies and got down to business. 

just can't shake those friendship bracelets

is there anything more quintessentially bff than lip smackers?

doodled notebook--if only I had a trapper

you can't have friendship without kitten stickers

of course, there must be mixtapes!

 and a paper fortune teller 

and acorn necklaces for the lady friends
not exactly the middle school bff heart necklace, but I did make it.

Abbie and I didn't know each other in 6th grade, but if we had it's quite possible we would've been bff.

Let's see. We would've hung out on the far side of the soccer field, by the chain-link fence that separated the field from the highway. And we would've had secret pacts and chain letters, rolled our eyes in mutual disdain during Sex Ed, read all Christopher Pike's books (especially Whisper of Death), painted our toenails with white-out and put our hair up with banana clips, watched Labyrinth and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves and Cujo, become blood sisters with safety pins, and bought slap bracelets from vending machines. Those would've been good times. Oh man, I'm missing Miss Abbie tonight.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

little wonders

from Monika and Ben's place in Burbank: an almost-stepped-on snail

 Watercolors by Ben

Bottlebrush trees

Fanciful members of the Aves family. 

And the ingredients for a sister project!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...