Sunday, October 24, 2010

Weekend project

Well, things are getting a little bit crazy here on Rushwood Dr. This is my third post today.

Our dining "room" is basically officially done. (Well, someday I want some sheers to cover the doors - the sun gets bad right around supper time. But other than that, it's done.)

 This is the only before picture I have of the dining room area.

And here is the after. Sorry it's a little dark - I didn't want to wait until tomorrow to take pictures and post.

If you look closely, you can see the chair rail we cut, painted, and put up this weekend (and you can see Susan's painting - a wedding gift from my siblings). We love our finished product!

Comfort food, anyone?

I don't know why, but this is my ultimate in comfort food/meal. This is the perfect time of year for it, too. I remember always thinking that mom didn't make enough biscuits.... sooooo I'm not gonna tell you how many I ate tonight.

Baking Powder Biscuits
2 c. sifted flour
3 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
1/3 c. shortening
3/4 c. milk

Mix dry ingredients with a fork. Cut in the shortening until coarse crumbs. Make a well; add milk all at once. Stir quickly with fork until dough follows fork around bowl. Turn onto lightly floured surface. (Dough should be soft.) Knead gently 10-12 strokes. Roll or pat dough 1/2-inch thick. Cut into circles (2 1/2"). Bake on ungreased baking sheet at 450 for about 12 minutes. Makes 10-12.

Oven Stew
1 1/2 lb. stew meat (I use minute or round steak, cut up)
3 carrots
3 potatoes
3 celery stalks
1 large onion
1 can cream of celery soup
2 beef bouillon cubes in 1 c. water
1 can tomato soup
1 can water
Salt and pepper to taste

Cut up meat, carrots, potatoes, celery, and onion. Combine all ingredients in large pot. Bake 5 hours at 275 or 6 hours at 250.

Splashdash Sunday

I'm feeling random today.

Isn't my title great?! I looked up synonyms for random on because I wanted some alliteration.

House Hunters drives me crazy. Seriously... people my age looking at 3,000 square foot $400,000 houses in Florida. Their comments? "I like the pool, but it doesn't have a waterfall or anything." "I wish those appliances were stainless steel." "There's no fireplace." What reality do you live in?! Certainly not mine.

Could I have about five more hours in the day?! Seriously. I could get so much more done. Or get so much more sleeping in.

I wish I had known to wear purple on Wednesday. I even stood in my closet and considered the purple shirt. Why am I always a day or two behind on these things?!

We had a discussion the other day at work about the origin (and relevance) of the rule that you shouldn't end a sentence with a preposition. Preliminary research demonstrates that it is actually a perfectly acceptable practice (providing the sentence makes sense, of course); the antiquated rule is based on some Latin grammar rule that made it incorrect - but in English it's just fine. Aren't you glad you know that?

I joined Good Reads. It's cool. But I have no time for it, or much pleasure reading, for that matter ; I've logged on precisely twice since creating my account.  Sorry, friends, if you really wanted to know what I'm reading.

I know I haven't written much about school this year. Let's just say it's been a struggle, but it's getting better. I'm doing a lot of thinking and reflecting right now. 

We've accomplished so much this weekend. We still have a little left to do, but once it's all cleaned up I'll be posting a few pictures of what we've done.

Hope you're having a perfectly productive... or lazy... or random... or just plain fun... weekend.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Before & After

One of my "list" tasks was to make something old/ugly/cheap into something nice.



It's not perfect (the door doesn't quite close from years in non-climate-controlled storage and we haven't figured out how to replace the legs, which were not repairable.. and, okay, we haven't bought, painted, or put in the two shelves, but I just so excited I had to post), but it's a definite improvement - and a place to store Grandma's Christmas dishes during the ten months of the year we don't use them.

The run-down:
cabinet: free (from storage at the farm)
paint: free (leftover from painting our living/dining/kitchen)
knob, hinges, and shelf supports: $10
back: $5
shelves: $10 (we haven't actually bought the wood yet, but it shouldn't be more than 2x the back)
total: ~$25

Monday, October 18, 2010

The #1 Rule

I've decided that the #1 Rule of Entertaining is to make good food.  If you do that, people will have a good time and want to come back. 


We had some friends over for the (awful!) KU-K-State game on Thursday. We made a little food...

I've always been self-conscious about having people over... for lots of little reasons.

But we are now working to be more intentional about hospitality, to enjoy fellowship with others, to build new and strengthen existing relationships, to open our home and our lives to others.

So our new philosophy?! If you cook it, they will come.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

it's here...

Can you spot the differences?!

So, that's what's new in the Kohlman house.

Monday, October 11, 2010

chase (draft)

"Chase" or "Yet not"

Warm autumn sun 
pierces my windshield
as I drive.

Soybeans dry in the field,
a neat row of round bales marking their boundary.
Milo shoots skyward
ramrod straight and step ladder tall
though some strange stalks rise above
all the rest.

Crooked hedgewood fence posts,
strung together with barbed wire,
fly by my windows.

Cars like mine tear down the dirt roads, dust clouds billowing behind.
All things familiar.
Yet not.

Beautiful church building rises up from the flat land;
the house across the dry dirt road is absent, prairie grown in its place.

There is the ditch where the wildflowers spilled over one another freely,
tangled together in a rainbow of blooms;
now shaved smooth by a lawn mower.

The walnuts still fall from the tree at the bend in the road
but the house just beyond stands stoically empty
(and no dogs chase my car).

Warm autumn sun
pierces my windshield 
as I drive by
all things familiar.
(Yet not.)


exciting news!

Hmm... what could Megan's exciting news be?!

I bet y'all are guessing that I'm having a baby. (I bet I can guess which of you readers are guessing that I'm having a baby.)

Nope. That's not it.

Yep, I'm sure. Positive, in fact.

And I'm not sorry about it, either. I'm not even sorry to get your hopes up. You should know better by now.

(I am a meanie.)

Well, on Wednesday, at 11:50 a.m., a special delivery will be made to our house...

Have I built up the suspense enough?!

I'm sure by now you want to know what it is.

But I think I'll leave you hanging. You should take a wild guess at what it is.

Until Wednesday.

I don't have any pictures right now. Well, not really.

(I am such a meanie!)

Let the countdown (and your guesses?!) begin!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Dictionaries and Dead Bodies

(I knew that title would pull you all in!)

We had some trouble with the dictionary today...

"Mrs. Kohlman! They keep skipping over F. It just goes D then E."

We also had a lesson on scientific research...

"You know, "cadaver" isn't just this character's last name. It's an actual word. Does anybody know what it means?"

"I'm not sure, but I'm thinking it has something to do with peanut butter."

"Oh. Well, you might want to rethink that in a few pages..."

(We read on and discover that "cadaver" means "dead body.")

"Ewww! That's sick!"

"Yeah, you might want to check the list of ingredients on your peanut butter."

Oh, middle school.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

the hard way

 "I wanted a perfect ending. Now I've learned, the hard way, that some poems don't rhyme, and some stories don't have a clear beginning, middle and end. Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what's going to happen next." - Gilda Radner 
So here's to poems that don't rhyme, stories that leave you coveting a sequel, days when the fruits of your labor seem invisible, and the winds of change.  Happy October... may it be a better month than your September, whatever kind of month your September was.