Tuesday, January 19, 2010

January 19th, 2010

Resolutions:

The grapefruit experiment is going well; the Grapefruit/squirt (half and half) sorbet is also the very first use of the ice cream maker my parents gave me this summer. It is now my new favorite toy! The sorbet turned out amazingly yummy, but the flavor was so concentrated that about a half-cup serving is perfect. Tonight I want to try a grapefruit with salt instead of sugar, as suggested in comments yesterday (thanks for the many tips!). It makes sense; salt complements melons and sweet corn, why not grapefruit?

New Environment Resolution: Organize cosmetics

In the area of improving my personal environment, I’m focusing on creating uncluttered space around me because I do believe that mess and clutter create can stress and attract negative energy. I’m at the point where the main areas of the house have been de-cluttered and I’m down to pockets here and there. My resolution for this week is to sit down and go through all my makeup and hair products, toss old ones (makeup is an excellent petri dish!) sort ones I use often into a single bag and store stuff I only use once a year for dress-up (black nail polish for Halloween, etc.) elsewhere so that it’s not taking up valuable space in the bathroom.

New Rule of Life: Take “Before” Shots. That’s because when we make a major change to improve something (re-doing the bathroom, changing hairstyles, starting a garden, cleaning out your closet, etc.) we quickly go from the awe and satisfaction of novelty to the boredom of every day. We are adaptable creatures, and quickly become accustomed to new things, even things that once made us happy. It’s called hedonic adaptation. Right now JD and I are putting the final touches on gutting the bathroom. It started as ugly brown carpet and yellowing walls with ancient drops of the previous owner’s nicotine tar leaching through the paint. Mysterious plastic bits and pieces were glued, screwed and foam-taped to the walls at random, marking long-discarded holders for Dixie cups, toothbrushes and air fresheners. I ripped out the moldering carpet and the room progressed to ugly bare plywood floors with dried carpet glue and a rotting patch around the toilet. In the last two weeks JD and I ripped everything out down to the studs, installed vinyl flooring, patched some drywall, replaced all the trim and coated everything in two layers of KILZ. It was really hard, smelly, hot, satisfying work. I still tiptoe into the doorway and just stare at all the sparkly newness of it. I can take pictures now, but anyone who didn’t see the horror where it began will only see a rather boring contemporary bathroom. The wow factor is lost in history. So take “before” pictures. Heck, take “during” pictures. Always have something to remind yourself how far you’ve come, lest you think you never accomplish anything!

Added to Reading List:

Flannery O’Connor, Wise Blood

Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love.

Elias Canetti, Crowds and Power

Elias Canetti, Auto-da-Fe

Georges Bataille, The Accursed Share: Consumption

Thorstein Veblen, The Theory of the Leisure Class

St. Therese of Lisieux, Story of a Soul

Robert Calasso, The Marriage of Cadmus and Harmony

Virginia Woolf, The Waves

Alexander et al., A Pattern Language

Randall Jarrell, The Animal Family

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

JennyRose -

I am so enjoying your blog these days. I keep a small make up bin in the linen closet and a small bag of essentials and a brush case in my bedroom.

I like to buy stuff when I see it on deep discount or want to try something new. WHen I do that, I put what I was using in the bin or my handbag. When the bin is too full or 6 months have passed, I check the bin and toss anything that I know I won't use. Check the bin when you need a replacement or want to change colors.

Keep stuff out of the bathroom so the humidity can't get to it. I do love makeup but I can only use a bit at a time so the truth is I don't need that much. I get so excited when I score a deal at the store. CVS puts green stickers on items that are 75% off and pink for 50% off. You do have to look but it's a fun way to pick up a new lipstick for a low price.

Anonymous said...

If you are enjoying making ice cream, try this one: Salted butter caramel!

http://www.davidlebovitz.com/archives/2007/04/salted_butter_c.html

Alix said...

Awesome reading list. I'll be interested to know what you think of Eat, Pray, Love. Take Elizabeth with a grain of salt, JoGeek. She may be a little whiny for you, but her writing style is gorgeous.

I love your new happiness mantra. Come to Casa Hice sometime and look around. I like us to get to know one another.

簡單 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
murahta said...

I have to admit, Eat, Pray, Love (or Eat, Pray, Puke as a friend and I now affectionately call it) was one of few books in recent memory to end up in my apartment building's recycling bin. But The Waves is fantastic and I'm interested in what you think of Wise Blood. I just finished O'Connor's The Violent Bear It Away and, while I found it tough to get into, I ultimately loved it.

And now you've got me conflicted. My ice cream insert has been sitting in the freezer, but now I don't know if I want grapefruit or meyer lemon sorbet.