Thursday, January 30, 2014

Making cheese at home. Because this is Wisconsin.

For Christmas, I got The Homemade Pantry, which is a pretty wonderful collection of recipes for basic things (like yogurt, ricotta, mozzarella, crackers, pasta, etc., you get it).  So! This weekend, we packed up the baby and headed to Get Culture, a cheesemaking supply store right in this lovely little city, to buy cultures and rennets and such.  The lady there was super-friendly and helpful (according to Matthew, I stayed in the car whilst the little bird slept) and told Matthew some things the book didn't about cheesemaking (it is a very simple book, which is nice, unless you are Matthew, who also likes to do things the best way, even if it isn't the simplest way).  Anyway!  We made mozzarella and creme fraiche!  Both were delicious.

Separating curds from whey
Ready to eat!

We ate it on a freshly-baked loaf of bread with olive oil, and it was crazy-good.  

We also took a road trip to Goose Pond to see if we could find the Snowy Owl who's been hanging around, but, of course, we didn't see it. We did see a Rough Legged Hawk, which made the drive a little rewarding.
Phoebe's sleeping schedule has become a bit more predictable, so we actually have time to do things again!  Hooray!  

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Lie, Cheat, & Steal

I'm teaching Lie, Cheat, & Steal (How to Write a Good Poem) at the Madison Public Library next Tuesday and 2 Tuesdays after that. We'll be talking about and writing persona poems, found poems, & erasure poems!

Register for the workshop HERE!

Friday, January 17, 2014

"Creepy Pregnancy Poem" on the Radio!

I read my poem, "Preserving," from Best New Poets 2013, on "Literature for the Halibut!"  Click on the image to listen to the January 13th show!

Hopefully it will work for a little while yet. I haven't figured out if they archive more than 2 shows for listening purposes...

(My poem is referred to as a "creepy pregnancy poem," which made me a little giddy.)

Monday, January 6, 2014

Starting Over

Every few years, I find the world around me has changed significantly enough to warrant starting over.  This may be a residual effect of so many years as a student and moving from one place to another.  I get scared (and bored) when I sit still for too long.  So, here I am, a few days into 2014, pretending this blog is brand new instead of feeling bad for writing nothing on it for so long.

Hello, Blog. Nice to meet you.

New Year's Eve/Day is my favorite holiday, because we take down the tree and wash our hands of the craziness of the holidays. No matter how dirty I feel after giving into the consumerist-madness, I always feel better on New Year's Eve. Everyone is so friendly! You can say Happy New Year to anyone and nobody is offended!  Hooray!  It is nice to take a day to look back, to look forward, and to think "Yes. I would like another go at this."

To kick off the new year, I bought a clean notebook and started reading a new book- You & Me, by Padgett Powell. I'm still working on A Guide to Being Born, which I've now renewed from the library 4 times. It's so wonderful, but it takes me a long time to get over one story and move onto the next. I got a Kindle for Christmas and have been reading poetry on it and doing all sorts of other geeky things with it.  Why don't I just buy Guide for my Kindle and be done with all of the renewing?  This is a good question.  In addition to reading a bunch, I've been writing a bit in this new notebook; rearranging furniture; cooking things without a lot of butter, cream, and sugar; playing with Phoebe, watching Mad Men with Matthew, thinking about poetry-- a lot of good things to start a year.

So much will change this year, which makes it hard to imagine what the year will look like.  Matthew will graduate in May, and it will be the first time in the history of our family's existence that neither of us is on a semester schedule.  Phoebe will start to eat food and crawl and walk and talk, and Carter will probably spend more and more time with friends and less time at home. I'll be teaching some poetry workshops, and we'll hopefully all be able to go to Vermont in October, for Chloe's wedding (I'll be going for sure! I'm in the wedding! Hooray!).  It will be a transitional year, much like most of the years before it, but it very well could be the last year of crazy-drastic change we have for a long time.  This, sadly, makes me nervous and uncomfortable.  Maybe after another winter with -50 degree windchills, I'll uproot us all, and we can move to Hawaii to grow macadamia nuts like Roseanne Barr?

OK! Four paragraphs! It's the start of a happy year of writing many more paragraphs! Now, onto dinner! (We're having sweet potato, black bean, and chard burritos with chipotle sauce.  Something like this.)