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    Saturday, August 29, 2009

    Great Aunt LaVaughn's Dill-Parsley Dip Recipe

    This is a super easy (and simple) recipe, and its just SO yummy! One of my Grandma Doris' sisters (LaVaughn, if I remember which sister correctly) used to make this recipe for family gatherings and the like. Its perfect for serving with cut veggies.

    My Grandma, Aunt Jody, and I have no idea where she got this recipe, unfortunately. But that doesn't stop us from enjoying it!


    So, without further ado...the recipe!

    * * * * * * * * *


    2/3 Cup Best Food Mayonnaise

    2/3 Cup Sour Cream

    1 ½ Tablespoons of dry white onion

    1 Tablespoon Dry Parsley

    1 Tablespoon Dill Weed

    ½ Teaspoon Beau Monde Seasoning+

    Directions: Just mix all together, chill (overnight perferably), and serve!

    * * * * * * * * *

    +If you have never heard of Beau Monde Seasoning before, don't panic! Before I got this recipe *I* hadn't heard of it either. Its basically a blend of celery, onion, and salt. Spice Islands (spices & seasonings) makes it and its apparently an 'all-purpose' seasoning.

    Enjoy! :)

    Friday, August 28, 2009

    Time for a New Hair Color...well, semi-new at least ;-)

    Well, I managed to successfully dye my hair yesterday. Yay! :) Go me! Its been a while since I've dyed my own hair w/o help from a friend. (Its just easier to make sure that you completely saturate the hair all over...especially the harder to see/back of the head places...when you have another pair of eyes and hands helping out :). So I'm definitely feeling accomplished right now.

    While my hair has faded from the really neat reddish color I got back in July for the Molly Weasley outfit (it was professionally dyed), I just never found the time to go and get it touched up...what with prepping for Costume College and then the actual convention, and then Life afterwards...and since then I've been too busy to even dye it myself. However, the last week or so, I've been pretty fed up of having my roots show, I can tell you! So yesterday, when I managed to get off a few hours early from work ('cause work was slow), I made sure to take the time and dye my hair. Yay!

    So its back to a more 'normalish' look for me. (If I recall correctly, I'm pretty sure I used Garnier Nutrisse's "Brown Sugar 63" - which is basically Light Golden Brown. So hair is back to more of a light brown, but with reddish overtones...and, of course, some of the lighter highlights from before show through, which is nice).

    Don't have any pictures yet of my current hair color. But maybe in the future :)

    Friday, August 21, 2009

    HCA's 1870s Picnic (Sept 20th) - Location Update

    The Historical Citizens Association (HCA)'s Board is pleased to announce - we have a new location for our 1870s Picnic!!

    We shall be picnicking at the Banning Residence Museum! (The Museum is located at 401 E M St, Wilmington, CA 90744-2610, in the Long Beach area.)  Picnicking will be FREE and we will have a croquet course (or two) set up.  If you have other games that you would like to bring, such as a set of Graces, please let us know. (Please email Lily Cressman regarding games or questions.


    Also, we are pleased to announce that we have scheduled two docent-guided tours *just for our group*. Tours are approximately 1 hr each and our tours are scheduled for 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm.  Museum Tours are $5.00 per person (children under 12 are free, though the tour is not recommended for those under the age of 9). The $5.00 fee allows you to see ALL the public areas of the 16-room mansion, the barn with its vehicles and blacksmith shop, and the one room schoolhouse, plus you'll get *lots* of local historical information. (Great bargain!)


    Parking - you can park all cars/vans on M Street (1 block south of Pacific Coast Hwy), which runs east-west past the house, or on Banning Blvd, which runs north-south from M Street (directly in front of the house).

    As a reminder - 1870s dress is encouraged. Please bring your own picnicking items (blanket or table/chairs, as well as food and drink items). 

    Hope to see you there!


    The Historical Citizens Association Board

    Rebecca/Violet, Maegen, Jen (R.), Karen, and Lana/Lily

    Tuesday, August 18, 2009

    feeling accomplished! (Crock Pot Dinner :)

    So, this morning, I was determined to get some food into the crock pot before I left for work...and I did! Yay! :)

    I had some stewing meat (beef chuck) on hand that I browned (in butter, of course!) and seasoned with some Arroyo Grande Seasoning (basically a dry rub/seasoning mix consiting of course ground pepper, course ground salt, & garlic - one of my favorite seasonings!) and a bit of Lipton's Onion Mix. Added about 1/4 cup beef stock to the crock pot, then threw in some Red Potatoes on top and some brown mushrooms (both sprinkled with the above mix of seasonings) .


    Looks tasty, if I do say so myself.

    If I had a *larger* crock pot I would have made the effort to go out to the store and buy some carrots and add those to the pot....but I don't have a large crock pot. (Someday, perhaps). For now, though, I'll stop on my way home and pick up some veggie (possibly carrotts, we'll see) to cook tonight and serve with my pot roast. Hmm...I guess its still a pot roast even if the the beef is cut into chunks and not one large piece of meat. Whatever you want to call it, it'll be tasty. :)

    And no, this is not for any particular reason or for something special. (Just little ol me that will be partaking of this later on tonight). I just wanted to make something in the crock-pot so it'd be an easy dinner when I got home from work. :)

    Monday, August 17, 2009

    these Crazy Days...

    Life hasn't really slowed down since Costume College, unfortunately. I came back from Costume College and was immediately thrown into a hectic work week...which turned into 2 hectic work weeks.

    Ended up working till 8:30pm...twice, and then was so burned out I didn't care anymore about staying late to get the 'priority' urgent stuff done and just did what I could during regular work hours.

    Dealt with a multi-day ant invasion at home...and finally found a product that worked (Yay!! for Epsom Salt!). Finally got to unpack my car from Costume College over the 8/8-8/9 weekend and start on laundry. Got into a fender bender around 5pm on Sunday (8/9)...sigh...cause I was *tired* and not paying enough attention. What a way to end that weekend! :p But at least I did get to hang out with my friend Gretchen for a bit and we went and saw Julie & Julia (which we both loved) on Saturday, so there was some good that came out of that weekend.

    So, went from an awful week, and a so-so weekend, to an even worse week. (That 2nd day of working till 8:30pm was Monday 8/10...FUN, let me tell you!). But I got the urgent/priority stuff done that was super time sensitive, and I gave up on staying late the rest of the week.
    (One contributing factor to why my workload was so awful was cause I normally share the workload with another lease admin - we split all the properties between us and it keeps everything manageable...most of the time. Though there are days when we're both swamped...that's just how our job goes. Our work load happens in cycles of super busy to barely anything. We've got not control over it either).

    I also found out that our back-up location for the upcoming 1870s picnic was no longer available for our event on the date we wanted. (They wanted more than our simple picnic, and they said that that date wouldn't work for them and wondered if we'd consider changing our date. Date change is out of the question.) We've been planning on that date for months now...and we just want a simple picnic, so back to the drawing board in looking for a location to have our 1870s picnic. After emailing and talking with certain people, one location came up as a definite possible spot, and I had someone call to inquire (she knows the director) if they'd be open to having us for our picnic on the date we want...but the director was out on vacation (back on Tuesday, 8/18). So hopefully, we'll hear back from them soon and find out if that location is a go. :)

    And there are other things that happened that I just don't feel like discussing over the email me if you *really* want to know.

    Two *POSITIVE* things last week - 1) I got to have a fun lunch at an Irish pub with a good friend (Jenn M)! We haven't done lunch together in a while. And we both love Durty Nelly's! :) , and 2) I did get a chance to go visit the Hensleys and play with the kids on Wednesday. (I SO needed some Kid Therapy time :) I brought over a new puzzle that I had picked up and Rhiannon and I worked on it together (she sure loves puzzles!) and just generally played with Rowan (and tired him out, really :).

    Oh, and I got a "Fan Page" for Historical Citizens Association created on Facebook (and an event page for the 1870s picnic). Something semi-productive that was non-work related :) Small victory.

    And my landlord had the AC serviced & fixed (got a new compressor!)...even if he forgot to let us know that he & the AC service guy were showing up at 8am on Monday morning (last week). I had asked him to scheduled service (its been a year, and the AC is old and faulty...and leaks coolant) and he said he would...but then he forgets to keep us in the loop as to when the repair guys are showing up. (My roommate was still home getting ready for work when the doorbell went off). He at least let us know that they were coming back sometime on Friday to install a new compressor. (That's something...I guess). But considering my week, I'm just glad we have a new compressor installed, so hopefully, when we next need to use the AC, it actually works!

    Let's see - I also mailed off my check for my ticket to attend the "Sound of Music Singalong" (Saturday, September 26, at the Hollywood Bowl) to Colleency since she bought a block of tickets for a group outing. (Yay!). Now if I only can find the time to make an Austrian Drindle...that would be neat to wear to the outing. Realistically, I don't have the time. But that doesn't mean I can't dream. (I did buy the Folkwear pattern and put it on my 'to make' someday list :). If I somehow manage to find the time to make time for this perform ace...that would be really neat. We'll see. I've got a bit of sewing to do for my 1870s and Regency outfits first! Even if I don't get that outfit done in time, I'm still looking forward to seeing the Sound of Music at the Hollywood Bowl. Sounds fun! :)

    Eventually, the 'Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad' week ended :). Yay for weekends! And sleep! :) I did manage to clean off my cutting table (and put things away that were sitting atop it...not just shuffle things around, mind you) but discovered when I went to start cutting fabric for my next project that I couldn't find my white cotton fabric. Ack! After going through my stash, I eventually found the fabric (sitting where I left it - in a semi-obvious place, if I had remembered), but it wasn't going to be enough for my current project(s). So time for a trip to my 'local' fabric store (JoAnn's Superstore - nothing else really close that carries fabric, really). At least I got to use my 40% off coupon on that purchase (which was expiring that day). So rest of my Saturday turned into washing all the fabric (including re-washing the previously bought fabric). Sunday afternoon = ironing the fabric. Wow, that was a LOT of ironing! At least THIS time I didn't burn myself on the iron! :) (I certainly did that while ironing right after Costume College - had washed all the cotton undergarments for Civil War and Regency outfits that I had brought with me to Costume it was time to iron them. And I burned one of my fingers and got a nasty blister from the iron. Ouch! Blister has since then popped, and the burned area is healing...slowly. Looks...lovely. :P )

    What else did I do? Oh yeah! I cut the fabric for a hem facing on my 1930s red skirt (I didn't have time to do that prior to Costume College, when I was attempting to fix the hemline by lowering it, so I just did a 'quick fix' to make it wearable, and now I need to actually fix it). I found enough of my original fabric (from leftover scraps) to cut the hem facing. So I cut some strips and sewed them together. Left off at the ironing stage (i.e. to work on later). I pinned the hem on my 1930s wool skirt (also fixing that hemline by lowering it). And I sewed up the ripped seam on my cheap Wal-mart pj bottoms. (I had arrived at the Long Beach Civil War event in May and realized I forgot my pjs, so ran out to Wal-mart and bought *something* to wear at night. Threw them in the wash after the event with other regular clothes...and when I took them out from the dryer, discovered that one of the main seams had unraveled. So I pinned it and threw it on my "to sew/fix pile" and left it there...until this weekend :).

    I also got in a bit of cooking - yay! (missed cooking with my being so busy first prior to Costume College with prep stuff...then being away at Costume College...and then coming home to hectic work stress/schedules). Did have to run out just as I was starting to prep some food to pick up a new propane tank for the gas bbq, as we had apparently run out. But at least that wasn't too long of a trek. :)

    And I got to sleep. Sleep is good

    And Thanks! go to various friends that the I talked with during the past 2 (no-fun) weeks to help me stay relatively sane :)

    We'll see what this week holds in store. Hopefully, a much better week. :)

    Wednesday, August 05, 2009

    Costume College over

    Whew! What a weekend.

    Sorry I've been silent on here lately - lots of time/effort has been put into prepping for Costume College (CoCo). And it definitely paid off :).

    And if you don't know what CoCo is...Wow! you mean I HAVEN'T talked your ear off about it yet? :) For more info, go here:

    This year at CoCo I ran the Information Dept (Information Desk at Costume College), which was completely new for me. And, to make things MORE interesting, I decided to have a game at the Information Desk that CoCo Attendees could play. Basically, its a Wheel that you could spin, after after it stopped on a category, you answered a trivia question. Many of them were images that you had to look at and then guess the time period, the sewing tool, the movie/tv show, etc that it came from. I even had a section on Costume College trivia (past colleges/conventions). :)

    Here's the full list of categories:
    1. What’s my Scene? (Movies/TV Stills)
    2. Say What?!? (Movies/TV Quotes)
    3. Costume College Trivia
    4. Sewing Tools & Equipment
    5. Unmentionables (Undergarments through the ages)
    6. Words of Wisdom (Helpful hints and tips provided by other costumers and some of our vendors).
    7. Out of Time (Guess the Time Period)
    8. Spin Again
    9. Ghodfuzzy to the Rescue! (Free Choice. Player gets to choose the category.)

    I had 12 segments on the wheel, so a few categories were repeated. Overall, I had a great reaction to the game, and everyone had fun (Yay!). So I'm glad I put all that work into it. Thanks go to various people for helping me build the wheel itself (vadenalim) and assemble the categories on site too (including collency, casketgirl, Maria, bygoneglamour, and others that I'm forgetting right now). Thank You!!! :)

    I had 100 Name Badge Ribbons to give out to those who played the game, and by Sunday (morning) they were gone!

    Information Desk itself went fairly smoothly overall. Some minor kinks that can be worked out later. I definitely have ideas for how to improve it (though some things will probably change just cause we're changing hotels next year...BIG change for us). A few holes in the schedule for covering the Info Desk (schedule is a tad harder to fill when ONLY Committee members or CGW Board of Directors can man the table, but various people stopped by and stepped up when there was a need for another body at the table. Thanks! :)

    Oh, and I taught my Intro to Leather Tooling class this year, and it went Spectacularly! I could have probalby used some more time, and a few minor glitches, but nothing serious. The students had a great time (I had limited the class to a max of 10 students - all pre-registered so I knew how many to prep for) and did really well on learning the various steps of tooling leather even though we had to rush through a few stages. (They got the idea of the stage, but they could have used some more time to bevel or pear shade...mostly beveling...cause there's a LOT of beveling going on in the design...and its a good thing to practice. Lots of designs incorporate beveling). I even got requests from various students to teach this again next year (so they can bring back their projects and show me what they've been working on and how they've improved) and got a round of applause. (Yay!!! :)

    I attended my 3 Limited Classes and they were all great! So very glad I got it. :) (Though I had to leave early from my first one cause I just wasn't feeling well and had to lay down/get fluids in me. I admit I am a bit dissapointed I missed out on good portion of that class, since it was a hands-on demonstration of dying different types of fabrics - something I've been interested in for a while - but I did get the handout and some samples. Plus I have some contact info for the teacher. She and I bonded a bit, too, when I drove her out on Thursday to an office supply store to get new handouts copied for her various classes since they were forgotten at home...and she was from out of state! So I'm not too worried. I can probably pick her brain later if I have questions on stuff I missed while I'm reading the handout.)

    The Saturday Evening (Time Traveler's) Gala this year was fabulous! I arrived a bit late (was working on my 1930s hair with the help of my roommate, first time attendee Laura who also happens to reenacts 1940s, and it took a bit longer than anticipated to get it just right...but it was worth it. :) Sewgirljen and Becca M (my other rommates) had managed to save me a seat at a nearby table. I must say - that table was a lot of fun. It's always nice when you meet new people and you get along! Plus the "Who am I?" game did help break the ice a bit more. (Only suggestion is to play it earlier in the evening, like between one of the courses, to help the table socialize earlier).

    Dancing at the Gala was a blast. Of course, we started off with the Time Warp (tradition!) and the floor was packed. Then other music kicked in and the dance floor varied between decently croweded to packed most of the night, courtesy of obishawn's great ability to read the mood of the crowd. I gotta say, that was the best selection of dance tunes at a Gala yet. (Yay! Keep it up obishawn! :) Never made it in to the Red Carpet room to get my picture taken, but oh well. Got a few pics on my camera and friends cameras...I was too busy dancing and socializing in the main room! :)

    Sunday afternoon had the Tea, and I had never attended the Tea at Costume College before...and chartreusekitty was the Tea Mistress (and had put together an awesome looking tea filled with fun games and had arranged for various people to bring their teapots so the tea could actually be served in real teapots - I brought my 1 teapot for her to use :) so I decided I just had to attend! Just as the Tea was starting, and I was about to buy one of the remaining tea tickets for sale (i.e. tickets sold are ones that someone had purchased before it was Sold Out, but now the person could no longer attend so the ticket is being re-sold for original purchase price) someone handed me a ticket that an attendee could no longer use and was willing to GIVE it away (without selling it). So I took it (gratefully)! I had a great time! (I did have to duck out at 3pm so that I could cover the Information Desk...since it was a blank slot on the schedule...but then Natalie, the CGW's treasurer popped by to see how things were going and sent me back inside to finish my Tea and she covered the Desk. Thanks Natalie!!! :)

    Sunday Evening was the CGW Annual Meeting...and fortunately it was under 2 hrs. Woo-Hoo! And...bonus...the various people I really wanted to get elected to the Board, and I voted for, of course, actually *got* on the Board. Yay! :)

    Afterwards, a bunch of us (9 total) went over to Millies to have dinner and just be silly. We had a blast! A lot of us are/were on the Committee so we've been super busy all weekend and prior to the convention with planning/prep and the actual mayhem of CoCo. So we definitely needed some downtime. :) I gotta say that dinner (the company) was great as always! And of course, we were silly...the laughter just flowed from our table/area. Good thing we kinda had a section to ourselves! :)

    Monday was packing up and making sure we got everything out of the various rooms (including conference rooms). I stayed to help collency make sure all the stuff was out of the boardroom (where committee stuff had been piled) and also helped collency and obishawn make trips of stuff to their car so they could check out of their room. Afterwards, I hung out with collency while we waited for Chaz to come by and pick up the last bit of Tea decoratations (the Arch) and we brainstormed ideas for CoCo 2010. :) We (Collency, Chaz, his Head Minion, and I) grabbed lunch at Beeps down the street...and then we all went our seperate directions.

    Back to real life...and
    (And figuring out my receipts so I can turn in the ones for Costume College committee stuff and get reimbursed :)