2013 Week 13: “Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.” No, really. He is super boring.

La De Blog - Pizza Brunch @ LCB

This week: Belly Shack/movie with Amanda and Stacy and then to see Oz the High and Boring with them and Z. Dumpster Babies release party @ Small Bar (Albany). Second dinner afterwards with Beth @ Quesadilla La Reyna del Sur. Drinks @ Takito with Stacy. Met with our chef friend at Bite to talk about possibly catering our wedding or rehearsal dinner. Pizza Party @ LCB’s. Puzzle party @ Jen’s. Easter brunch potluck @ Boohaus. Spin x2. I tried the shoulder press for the first time Saturday. I love feeling my arms tightening up and muscles growing. It is EXCITING!

For Tweekly make, I MADE my house a whole lot cleaner and finally filed a pile of papers that had been sitting around since DECEMBER. Yowza. Also, Z and I did a mega clean to get ready for our bruncheon, so it’s super nice to have a super duper tidy house.

Films watched 13th week of the year:

Oz the Great and Powerful
Pay it No Mind: The Life and Times of Marsha P. Johnson *
Knife in the Water** [ Poland ]

* documentary
** foreign language

You can and should watch the Marsha P. Johnson documentary here. She seemed like an absolute real deal of a human being and someone who cared so deeply for those in her life. I had never heard of her until the Chicago Zine Fest when Osa Atoe (Shotgun Seamstress) did a reading about her. It was my favorite reading that night. Her post, which I believe she read directly from is here. Her reading made me want to read more about Marsha P. Johnson and watch the documentary and I am so glad that I did. Osa’s post also includes a polaroid and print by Andy Warhol of Johnson that I couldn’t find by googling. Johnson had such a smile.

2013 Week 12: Every day, in every way, I am becoming a better feminist.

La De Blog - Rhymes with Twee @ Urban Folk Circuit @ Logan Square Farmers Market

Z snapped this photo of me in front of my Rhymes with Twee booth at Urban Folk Circuit @ Logan Square Farmers Market. Met some lovely people today and ate yet another delicious grilled cheese sandwich from Gayle’s Best Grilled Cheese. I wish that Urban Folk Circuit could sell through the entire farmer’s market season. I heard that from a number of shoppers today what a good pairing it was and I agree!

This week: Went to dinner @ Bite with Anna. Hala Kahiki with Gretchen & Z. Made from Epicurious with strawberry sauce instead for a coworker’s bday. Dinner with Kimmi/Jon @ Quesadilla. Spin, spin. Worked on more tax stuff – I’m rounding the bend! Dinner with Z @ Thai Village. Sold @ Urban Folk Circuit. Also, I made this:

La De Blog - Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie with Carrot Sweet Potato Goat Cheese Topping
Sweet Potato Carrot Goat Cheese Mash Shepherd’s Pie from A Cozy Kitchen.

I bought nearly everything for this recipe at Plenty Grocery & Deli except for goat cheese which I had from Trader Joe’s. For the “meat”, I subbed in one pack of Upton’s Ground Seitan. I used sweet potatoes instead of russet potatoes in the topping. I used heavy cream in place of whole milk. I didn’t use any flour since I wasn’t using real meat. I used Annie’s worcestershire sauce and vegetable broth in place of beef broth. This was one of the best things I’ve ever made. Zachary loved it too. Thanks #instacookingclub!

Films watched 12th week of the year:

Dreams of a Life *
That Evening Sun
The Three Stooges: The Movie
North Sea, Texas ** [ Belgium ]
Girl 27 *

* documentary
** foreign language

North Sea, Texas was one of the best gay movies I have ever seen and I watch a lot of gay movies. A lot of them are terrible. This one was poignant, tender, and beautiful. Definitely a MUST-see.

I posted the following on my Facebook page: Just finished watching the documentary dreams of a life. Honestly, it was one of the most chilling things I have ever seen. To have someone in this day and age die and not be discovered in their flat for 3 years is unthinkable. To have no family or friends report her as missing, no one in her building report it, utilities not reporting it. My heart hurts for this poor girl. While watching, I couldn’t stop thinking about my friend jeff barszcz who took his life last may and posted about it on his blog so that his cats would be taken care of. if he hadn’t, how long would it have taken for him to be found? I knew only a handful of people had his newer address. It still saddens me there was never a obituary for him. I don’t even know how to end this post. I would love to talk to someone about it. Watch the film. It is on netflix streaming.

I have read a great deal about Steubenville and the judgment that came down. At this point, I have read something like 25 articles/blog posts. I have wept a lot this week because justice has not been served. Why is our society deteriorating in such a way? I also watched Girl 27 and it was a good bookend to the week. This week was all about strong women who did not deserve the hand they were dealt. Every day in every way, I am becoming a better feminist.

2013 Week 11: “All my nightmares escaped my head. Bar the door, please don’t let them in.”

La De Blog - Nopalitos Chili

The Radical Face song “Welcome Home” was at the end of Forks Over Knives and HEY, I have that album and I hadn’t listened to it in AGES.

Tweekly make was Vegetarian Cactus Chili from Pacificlectic. I had two jars of nopalitos that I had been itching to do something with and I found this recipe on a google search.

Cactus Chili
makes approx 6 servings (1 cup ea.)

Nopales (flat pad cactus), cooked, 1 Jar (30 oz)
Diced Tomatoes, 2 cans (~30 oz total)
Tomato Sauce, 1 can (8oz)
Black Beans, 1 can (~15 oz) – drained & rinsed
Garbanzo Beans, 1 can (~15 oz) – drained & rinsed [ I didn’t have a can on hand, so I used two cans black beans ]
Yellow Sweet Corn, 1 can (~15 oz) – drained & rinsed [ Left out ]
Onions, raw, 1/2 cup cut small
Garlic, 6 cloves minced
Olive Oil, 1 tbsp
Jalapeño Pepper, 1 pepper diced small [ Left out due to stomach recovery ]
Veggie Mexican-style crumbles – if desired [ I used TVP ]
crushed red pepper flakes (to taste)
garlic powder (to taste)
onion powder (to taste) [ I left out ]
chili powder (to taste)
cumin powder (to taste)
cilantro and/or vegan sour cream for garnishments (to taste)


In a large pot (I used a 5 quart pot), saute the onions and garlic in the oil on medium-high heat until translucent.
Add tomatoes and tomato sauce.
Add corn, beans, jalapeno pepper, and nopales (cactus). Make sure to thoroughly rinse the corn and beans (especially the beans). The liquid they come in is a main source of the “gas” with beans.
Add spices to taste.
After everything’s been added, cook for approximately 30 minutes on medium heat. Stir frequently.
Garnish with cilantro and sour cream. Serve with chips, tortillas, or rice.

I tried the tofutti better than sour cream on this chili. Not fooling anyone. I had to google reviews to see if I was the only one, but somehow a lot of people are convinced that this tastes like sour cream. It absolutely does not, but it was fine.

This week: Picked out fabric for my wedding dress with Kpoene (Mignonette Bridal), had my work book club meeting for Eating Animals which was the book I picked. I was rather surprised at the outcome actually. Went to Big Star with a neat girl I met at the Creative Expo, Drinks @ Barrelhouse Flats with the awesome and awesomely-named Paige Worthy, avoided St. Patrick’s Day crowds at Joe’s Wine Cellar, sat down with my tax stuff and made some progress. Spin class at WPAC on Wednesday, the Live DJ Spin class has been incredibly busy the last few weeks. Kimmi was going to meet me, but she got there as someone signed up for the last bike. Curses!

Films watched 11th week of the year:

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Wizard People, Dear Reader)
The End of Love
Patrik, Age 1.5 ** [ Swedish ]
Forks Over Knives *

* documentary
** foreign language

2013 Week 10: Cha Cha Cha Chia Waffles

La de Blog - Vegan Chia Waffles

Tweekly make: Made the awesome vegan chia waffles from Skinny Jeans Food site. Only sub I did was maple syrup for stevia. Also, let’s just take a moment to talk about how awesome Chia Seeds are? I discovered them when I was doing the Anti-Candida diet in the fall and made a “pudding” with them. I’ve been putting them in nearly all of my smoothies lately. They make the smoothies have a bubble tea type texture, which makes them even more drinkable. I would love to find more recipes that incorporate chia seeds. Have you got any?

This week: Checked in on Taco the turtle. Cinchel @ Burlington. Zine Fest Readings @ 826-CHI. Zine Fest Exhibition. Met longtime internet friend Taryn Hipp! Dinner @ Ground Control. Saw Somebody Up There Likes Me and Nick Offerman in person sporting his mustachioed glory. Zine Fest After Party @ Uncharted Books. Quick drink at claustrophobic Longman & Eagle. Went to Martha Stewart Wedding Party with Rani and I had to cab it home when I started feeling nauseous. I started feeling a bit off around Thursday/Friday. Not sure if it was food poisoning or gastroenteritis, but it is not a lot of fun. Consumed in the last two days: 4 bananas, 1 Cup apple sauce, 3 Cups chicken broth, 3 Cups Ginger Ale, 1 Avocado. I had to stay home from work today. Caught up on Glee in between sleeping. Feeling much better, but now a headache has taken over and still feeling week and having chills/sweats. I should note here that my boo remains the best boo. He took such great care of me and brought me sick supplies while I was feeling so grodypants. What a great booski.

Films watched 10th week of the year:

Groundhog Day
Somebody Up There Likes Me
Jonestown: The Life and Death of Peoples Temple *
Morgiana ** [ Czech Republic ]

* documentary
** foreign language

Morgiana was beautiful and I loved it. If you liked Valerie and Her Week of Wonders, then you will enjoy Morgiana, possibly even more so. BEAUTIFUL cinematography. Captivating story. Great score. These are things I wish more films contained. It made me want to read the book even.

2013 Week 9: Twee Cookery

Took Z out for his bday dinner @ Little Goat. I did a ton of cooking/baking this week. I blame Pinterest, which I got back into this week. On Vegan Vednesday, I made this creamy spinach artichoke dip, which used cashew cream. That day it was pretty good, but the flavor improved the next day. Attended the Creative Expo put on by the Chicago Artists Resource at Chicago Cultural Center. The workshop ‘Copycats Beware: Protecting Creative Works with Copyright and Other Intellectual Property Rights’, given by Kathleen M. Wilt, Attorney from Valauskas Corder LLC, on how to protect yourself as an artist from copycats was worthwhile, but the keynote speech by Chris Kaskie, President of Pitchfork, fell flat; with Kaskie talking a lot but not actually answering many of the questions from audience members. Went to Podhalanka and then saw The Magnificents put on by the House Theatre @ Chopin. Pardon my wordplay, but it was MAGICAL. Z and I don’t get out to see many plays, but this one was truly one to watch. The House Theatre Company excels at what they do. There was a sub for my fave spin instructor Saturday and he could have been John Waters’ brother. I added strength training before my two spin classes this week and my arms and legs are still achy! Went to breakfast at Toast 2 to visit Beth. Took Tilda on a massive walk.

La De Blog - Washi Tape Cookie Tin 01

La De Blog - Washi Tape Cookie Tin 02

Tweekly make: Made those incomparable nutella-stuffed chocolate chip cookies and a tin to put them in for a coworker’s last day. I cut a heart shape out of paper and used fabric tape in rows to cover it and then I cut the excess tape off. Then I used Mod Podge to stick it to a tin my work got corporate gift cookies in and kept reapplying Mod Podge to the heart. Parts started curling, so I put plastic wrap on the top and then set a plate on top of that to flatten it out. Once it was mostly dried, I took the plastic wrap off and applied one more coat of Mod Podge. I know my coworker will love the cookies once they make them to her.

La De Blog - Paul Newman cookbook nicole kidman's crispy orchiette with broccoli, pine nuts, and garlic

I also made Paul Newman cookbook: Nicole Kidman’s Crispy Orchiette with Broccoli, Pine Nuts, and Garlic from the Paul Newmans’s Cookbook. Way back in the day, a VERY similar recipe at Bite was almost exactly like this except it had raisins. The recipe from the cookbook was nearly identical to that recipe, except I forgot about the raisins until I was eating it. HUZZAH! So great when a recipe turns out as hoped!

Films watched 9th week of the year:

The Bank Job
Chelsea on the Rocks *
Tony Manero ** [ Chile ]
Breaking Glass
Violet Tendencies
The Virginity Hit

* documentary
** foreign language

Wow, Scarface is really boring; so boring in fact that Beth and I fast-forwarded through about a half hour of the movie while Z gave us the plot summary. Breaking Glass; about an 80’s musician worried about selling out, was this week’s winner by a long-shot, although it ended rather abruptly. Z told me why – the US version cut the original ending, which I HATE knowing. The whole point of the film changed by lopping off the original ending. Gah. What’s worse is the ending is nowhere to be found on the internet. INTERNET, you disappoint me.