Okay, so after a month of blog-silence, you’re probably wondering if I’m dead, or possibly just out actually doing stuff for a change? The answer on both fronts is no, not really. It would be a little misleading to just leave it at that though: I have in fact, to my amazement and great joy, been Doing Stuff… just probably not as much of it as I might hope.
What stuff? Well, Project365, for starters. (Yes, again. I am nothing if not pseudo-persistent.) Shockingly, I didn’t fall off the wagon once this month! To celebrate, I made myself a little collage:
It is surprisingly gratifying to see an actual, visual milestone of progress. I should make myself more visual project goals in the future! So that project, at least, is going fairly well. Not surprisingly, my photo-taking in general for the year has also gone up, which has been kind of fun in its own way.
In non-photography arenas, my year-end recap stated that I also wanted to work on my flute-playing and sewing.
I have been practicing away at the flute, and even hooked up (finally!) with a teacher to give me a Flute 101 tune-up. I had been emailing back and forth with a different teacher since December trying to arrange a meeting, and finally gave up and found another one. This teacher is a music student at one of the local universities and was very friendly. In an hour, she answered all the questions that I’d been accumulating since about October, gave me a better structure for warming up and practicing, and generally made me feel better about my overall technique. The plan is to see if I can set up regular lessons with her over the summer; without the actual band practices, I think it would do me good to have some added focus… and there is no way I can fit lessons in before then.
All I’m missing now? A frackin’ trill chart (come on, Google!) and the discipline for daily practices. (Hmm… that sounds familiar…) I’m trying to talk myself into 20 minutes daily. Thus far, I would say the negotiations are at an impass.
On the sewing front, I had set an unofficial goal for myself of 12 sewn garments in 2013. To kick off, I figured I’d use up the flannel leftover from my housecoat project, and whip up matching pajama pants. The fabric was easy to work with, the pattern was very straightforward. No problem, right? Hahahaha! You clearly don’t know how my projects inevitably go. To quote Mal: Never goes smooth; how come it never goes smooth?!
What ensued was way more complicated than this project should have been and yielded results that I am not particularly happy with but will endure because, hey, homemade pajama pants, right? You can see now why I didn’t bother taking pictures/posting about this particular project. I was hoping that February’s garment might be some practical work-fabric Thurlows, but after the Epic Pants Fail that January embodied, I’m thinking an easy top or something would be a better choice. We’ll see.
Lastly, although I don’t really have any real documentation of it, I have definitely been baking more than usual. Among the recipes tried were…
Nigella’s Dense Chocolate Loaf (a hearty hells yes; bake this)
A vegan-ized version of this honey cake (pretty good, if too sweet)
Nigel Slater’s Chocolate Muscovado Banana Cake (…ehn)
A maple-apple-spice cake from this book — thanks Maria! (great flavour, crumb was a bit dry)
My first-ever rugelach (not bad, but nothing special either)
and a whole bunch of granolas.
We’ll see if this pace keeps up: Maria and I are looking to get some more schooling on the cake decorating front, so it would make sense to have cakes about to practice on. As the months wend on, I expect my attention to turn more to bread and laminated pastries (I will conquer the croissant this year!) but again… time will tell!
How have your years been kicking off?