Just a few photos to show you what I have been up to. First, I have been doing strange things to my kitchen. Since I live on the third floor of an apartment complex I kind of have lawn envy so my kitchen has this "indoor yard" thing going on, complete with cheap yard flamingos and garden gnomes. This is my progress on that idea.
Secondly, I have set myself a little challenge. I want to try and make a lunch box for each pokemon. We shall see how well I do! I'm going in numerical order from the national PokeDex so my first is one of my favourites, BULBASAUR~~~
And I leave you with a Hello Kitty plush I'm stalking at the grocery. I want to win it but I am horrid at crane games. ;_;
Mr. Blog! Hello again! It has been some time since I last visited with you. Life has been difficult lately. My step father passed away recently and I have been sort of "off" feeling when it comes to being social and interacting with anything. I just recently started back up on Facebook and going out of the house, which has sort of been rather reluctant in it's own. I cannot lie, I feel my life outlook is a bit jaded. I have been watching from a distance how ugly people can be when someone dies in a variety of instances right now. The things I have observed have been ugly and depressing.
I haven't seen some friends in quite a while, and that makes me sad. And others are just using me up for their own selfish needs. Just remember, Mr. Blog, that if you only call on your friend when you need something then eventually your buddy is going to catch on and realize the true dynamic of your relationship. And that is a rather shitty feeling, when someone comes to the realization. My emotional spectrum has run the gamut from sad and crying all the way over to straight furious. I still am unsure how I am going to deal with what I feel like is me and my own being taken advantage of at this time.
But I have also made quite a few new friends as well, so positive thoughts ahead for new friendships! I really do not care to be negative despite my constant urges to dwell on the more dismal pieces recently. So going out and having people to hang with that I can be myself around and not have to "take care of" has made me feel much better as of late.
Back to my stepdad. William Lee Marshall, who we called Bill Lee, was an amazing guy. Not in some ideal fatherly figure manner or anything. He was far from the "father" role in my life. In fact, we spent a great deal of the time giving dirty looks and being total jerks back and forth for the first decade I knew him. He was the new dude that was wild and free and dating my mother. And I was the brat that my hot mom had to tote around despite his wants. We surely were destined to see eye to eye during my teen years, right? I will admit to my fair share of evil step daughter shenanigans, some provoked and some were not. But after time had mellowed the wild man and the whiny brat grew into a woman I really began enjoying my time with Bill Lee. He was a very thought filled man who enjoyed reflecting within himself for deeper meanings in life and always was trying to spiritually grow beyond what he was at the time. Oh, he knew he was not perfect. In fact, I don't think he was ever striving for such an impossible thing. He was only trying to do the best he could with the life he had. He was not the wild man I remembered as a child, but he never lost that fiery depth that was wild and out of control in his younger years. Some days he was passionate about topics we would discuss, other days he was agitated and argumentative with my mother. It may had upset me to see them argue as a kid but now that I am an adult I could understand the fighting better, mostly laughing at them when it would develop into such exchanges in later years. Lots of laughing, actually.
I am also heartbroken for my mother. She is not one to share her deep, sentimental side to anyone really. She likes to be the tough one. But I would be a stupid, insensitive person to not be able to understand at least a small part of her loss in this. I could never imagine my life without the Captain. They were the constant in each others lives, more than any other. Now he has left her and I can do nothing to ease that for her. I love my mother dearly and fiercely and passionately. If there was ever anything I could do to erase this pain from her life, I would. I know that sounds silly, sort of how a child would think. For children think that life can exist without pain and suffering. They do not understand it. I understand that when those two brought their life together that inevitably this would happen, one would loose the other, but I cannot help but to feel that childlike love for my mother and her broken heart. I will always be her child.
I got to help my mother with taking care of Bill Lee in his final weeks before he passed. He was at home, with her, where he wanted to be more than anywhere else. I tried my very best to put off everything else in life to give them all the time I could as selflessly as possible. I am not perfect and could not spend every waking moment with him, like I wanted to, but I think I did my best by him. He took his last breath on December 23rd in the company of my mother and I while we were taking care of him. She gave him everything he wanted and had asked for, despite what other people had said or done. Her goals were always what he had asked from her and I hope that he was at peace for those last few weeks.
I cannot think of a time that someone's passing has upset me so much except for when my Granny died. I even cut my mother's hair crooked a few weeks ago being all out of sorts. I haven't been crafting or really doing anything creative, and I do not really care for this feeling accompanying the lack of artistic output. I feel heavy in the heart and burdened from not being able to creatively pour out this energy. Fingers crossed, Bloggy-pooh, that I will be able to get back into some sort of groove.
The vernal equinox has come and passed and I am in fact feeling some relief from this. Spring time is my season. Not for the warm weather or the fleeting of winter, but because the rain will be coming soon. Rain makes me so happy. Rain and thunder. Most people are always so, "Ohh" and "Ahh" over the lightning but I want the boom, Mr. Blog. I love the way the air cracks and one can feel the sound make the earth shake.
Mr. Blog, please brace yourself for a bit of fangirl action going
on up in this bitch tonight because I met Rittz
We went to the show at The Waiting Room this week and it was every bit of wonderful that I could ever wish for. I got to see many of my friends and cool famous people as well! Everyone who performed was enjoyable and I got to let myself have a good time without any worries of work, kids, etc.
Captain and I
My friend and I just being our goofy selves. I already gave her the heads up that I would be poaching her superior photos for my blog. *psst!* Her smartphone has flash~ Modern technology, what a wonder.
I cannot explain the embarrassing amount of panic I had getting to hug this man. I adore his voice, love his music, and admire his drive. Plus, he is so damn sexy. (I kind of think he resembles someone I am rather partial to as well...) I thought I was surely going to act like a fool. I actually try very hard to not get so excited over artist/bands like this anymore after my disappointment in Kansas a few years ago. I believe that it is better to keep myself ignorant to how much a famous person can potentially be an asshole, despite my external understanding of how stressful such a life can be and how tough managing so many fans could become. But I could not stop myself this time. Afterwards I cried because I was so happy he was so chill about it all. The terror of learning another person I idolize was possibly a total douche melted and I was left with that warm and fuzzy feeling you get from the experience. Bless his heart for putting up with my shenanigans.
There have been quite a few requests from others to see the items I use to create my bentos, Mr. Blog! So I think we should give the public what they are asking for since I don't get this much attention often~
First of all, you don't NEED these snazzy and super cute utensils to bento. All you have to do is be creative! But they really do help, especially if you want to do kyarabento! Kyarabento is the super cute ones with little characters, hence the word kyara/キャラ, as the prefix in this situation. I started off doing much of my work with a tiny pair of scissors and tooth picks for my details. What I would suggest for a bento start-up/budget kit would be as follows;
Regular Sized Scissors
Various Sized Plastic Straws
My Cute Food & Bento folder on Pinterest is by far the largest one I have and this is for a reason. Inspiration and ideas! I hoard those images like a mad woman obsessed with cutesy edible things. Wait, I am a mad woman. And I am hoarding. Anyways! It may seem difficult at first, Mr. Blog, to come up with your own ideas but emulating those other designs actually got my creative juices flowing in the bento area. As I figured things out I began branching out on ideas and alternate methods, making the entire process much more entertaining and way less tedious.
I'm not going to get much deeper into bento itself as the internet has a pretty wide list of information to glean on the topic. Instead I am now going to show you my current vast cabinet of bento making cutes.
Behold~ My stash!
Sandwich cutters always save time and make things cute/interesting fast~
They are pretty easy to find at Walmart, where all these came from, and a priced around 3 USD for each one. The only exception in my photo is the far left one. That one cuts and seals the contents inside the bread and was about 5 USD.
Cookie cutters are a nice way to add shapes and variety quickly without having to hand craft every piece. I use them for everything from veggies to actual cookies.
Egg molds are a pretty common bento item. I bought these at the local asian food market. They are pretty simple to use and I have found other items besides eggs to smoosh into them with similar results! Some of these are rice, chicken or tuna salad, and sweet potato chunks.
These are molds specifically designed for rice smooshing, also known as onigri. I use them alternatively as cookie cutters from time to time as well.
To the left is an actual nori/seaweed cutter. This is actually designed for the crafting of bento and can be on the pricey side even when purchasing online. I feel that it was well worth the effort though since I do not have to cut out faces all the time anymore with the tiny scissors. To the right is just your regular everyday cheap paper punch. They work just as well. I keep my "bento paper punches" separate from any actual paper crafting though for obvious reasons. They nori punch was around 20 USD and the paper punch was 1 USD. Utilize the paper punches if you can find cute ones!
Now, Mr. Blog. This is a rather sophisticated bento tool here. This is the Cute Z Cute! And I LOVE it. I use it for many, many things. Toast, sandwiches, eggs, cheese, cookies, rice, the list goes on for miles. I even use the facial features as tiny punches for circles and lines as free form designs. This bad boy was 20 USD but I haven't regretted the purchase yet~
Above from left to right is; 1. microwave donut mold 2. red cosmetic travel containers 3.tiny drawing condament bottle 4. Mio bottles (emptied) and 5. metal cookie cutters
The donut mold was ordered from J-List (I actually linked J Box here because that is the all ages version of the website. J-List is the same site with an "adult" section included) and just a cute little whim that I got when ordering some designer food picks and baran wrappers for my stash. I'm pretty pleased with it as it is designed to go into the microwave! It came with a (japanese) recipe to use for the batter but I usually make a 3-2-1 cake mix and that works out just fine.
The travel cosmetic containers and the Mio bottles are for mostly sauces and salad dressings. Mio caps snap on and off if you take the plastic wrap away.
My little mustard bottle has a tiny opening so it makes for a great tool to draw with on foods. I usually fill it with barbecue sauce since that stands out the best on most foods and I do not care much for just plain ketchup.
The metal cutters are a nice alternate to the little plastic ones since I can cut through raw veggies with these better. You know what that means? Cute cucumber salads~
This strange looking critter above me is apparently a pie mold. I found it at the thrift store for .97 cents and was mostly enamored that it was star shaped. I love star shapes best! I had to use my Google-fu to figure it out and I haven't officially used it to make pocket pies as of yet. The side is used to cut the proper sized shape to insert into the press and the tiny star on the side is to allow for an air vent in the crust. I CANNOT WAIT TO USE THIS!!!
So, as you can see, my collection is becoming greater and greater as I piddle around and find nifty things. This is not all my items, I have so many I split everything up into different posts to occur in the future. Otherwise this post would be massive and I would surely drag it out like a rambling moron. I hope you enjoyed digging in my cabinets, Mr. Blog. Would you be interested in seeing how I use these things? Would tutorials be something for me to work on? Let me know! I always have wanted to try my hand at some instructional blogging.