Thursday, May 27, 2010

Dear Lord God what a day!

So the only thing keeping me going right now is that knowledge that, this time tomorrow, I'll be vacationing. And oh how I need it.

This week has been insane. There's been some chaos at work. It wasn't really a negative, since it's made the week fly by, but it's lent a little extra crazy to my week.

And, of course, today is the day my 250 cupcakes are due. I'm in pretty good shape since I have all of them done except 2 dozen that still need frosted. Or at least I was feeling pretty good until they wanted me to have them there at 1 in the afternoon. So now I'm really rushing. But it'll be ok.

It'll all be worth it once we can all pile in the car and head out this evening. Then I can just stretch out and chill. And by then I'm sure I'll be wound so tight that I'll have to.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Six of one, half dozen of the other...

So I can't decide if yesterday was a bad day or a good day.

Work was crazy busy, and required some actual physical work, so I was dead tired at the end of the day. But it did make the day fly past. After work, I just wanted to come home and crash, but it was my cousin's birthday so we had to head to my grandmother's for his party. I didn't want to go, but we got a free meal, cookie cake, and got to visit with everyone.

During the day, I found out that my nice, neat plan for thesis may be falling apart because the people involved from my school are trying to push me back. At first I was very eff you about it. Had quite the "I'll take my ball and go home" attitude. But now I'm really torn. I have been looking to see if I could find some sort of similar online program that would accept my credits, but I've come up empty handed. On the other hand, my main reason for rushing was because the actress I had planned to be my lead was only available in the summer. I recently found a new actress that may be better than the first, and her time isn't as limited. So maybe it's time to consider slowing it down and shooting in the fall. I really don't know.

And, just as my thesis is withering, my cupcaking is taking off. I've slowly been working on the 250 cupcakes for my daughter's school and, in the process, have been posting tons of pics on facebook. As a result, I have been contacted by several businesses (some restaurants and some spas) that would like to sell my cupcakes. It's quite a novel concept for me. People are seeking me out. Wanting to pay me for my hobby. Hmmm. It's nice, whether it all works out or not.

Well I guess that's it! Another day closer to the beach though! Woo Hoo!

Monday, May 24, 2010

And the countdown begins...

It's a Monday morning, but I'm not the least bit sad to be at work. In fact, I'm kinda excited. And that is because it means I have fewer days till our mini vacation.

That's right! This Thursday, I will go to my daughter's big 6th grade celebration, drop off 250 cupcakes (15 dozen are already done and frozen, 4 dozen are done but not in the freezer yet, and I think I'm gonna make about 3 more dozen so there will be some extras), party for a while with her, her friends, and their families. As soon as we finish up, we will hop in our car and head to the beach. The plan is to drive about half way, find a motel and stay the night, and then drive the rest of the way Friday morning.

I'm so excited just to have some down time with the ones I love. And, of course, I'm also looking forward to getting some sun, some reading time, and checking out some killer restaurants.

I really wish we didn't have to hurry back. But I also know that we all have responsibilities and the ability to carve out even a little bit of time just for us is a tremendous gift.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Silent Saturday

Key Lime Pie Cupcakes

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Awesomeness is afoot...

So, while I personally have nothing but good stuff to report, I have to first say that poor Not-So-Ex is so incredibly, horribly sick. He's working evenings this week and I so felt for him when he was trying to get up and get everyone going this morning. I'm hoping he'll get to the doc once he rests a little this morning. I just can't have him all sickie on our vacation! Poor baby.
My Chocolate Mint Cupcakes (with a Peppermint Patty in the middle)

I'm gonna be super duper busy the next few weeks. For one, I have 250 cupcakes to make in a week. I got started last night and knocked four dozen out at least, so that's a plus. I'm trying to crank out as many as I can ahead of time, make them extra beautiful (with special emphasis on tying them to my daughter's school colors), and freeze them so that they'll still be gorgeous and moist for the celebration. I got my bigger boxes and some of my special cupcake liners in yesterday, so that helped me get started.
A terrible pic of beautiful Triple Chocolate Cupcakes

On a completely different note, the White movie is in full swing. While I was in awe of the good review that came from the New York Times, I think I was even more moved by the article in the Charleston Daily Mail. Around here, you say Jesco and people either laugh or roll their eyes. It can bring out a lot of anger. I was pleased that the author watched the movie with an open mind instead of pigeonholing it based on rumors and fears. The response has been much more positive than I ever expected.

And, speaking of the movie, I will get to hit my first real film festival next month. I'll be attending the Flyover Film Festival in Louisville, Kentucky! I will hopefully get to stay at the absolutely amazing 21c hotel. These are opportunities I may never have had if it wasn't for this extraordinary film and the wonderful people involved. I talked to the director yesterday and he let me know he name dropped me a few times on the director's commentary for the DVD. How awesome is that?

It's so funny to think back to when we were filming. I had a friend that insisted that I was being used and, once the film was done, these people would walk away and that would be that. But, of course, it turns out that they have stood by me. I have no doubt that, if I needed anything, be it now or 10 yrs from now, if I ring up my director or even my producer, they'll do anything to help me. Some of my "friends," not so much. But anyway, that year + out of my life is not one I would ever want to go through again, but I couldn't be happier that I did it when I did.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Wendy's FAIL

Not-So-Ex picked me up a salad for lunch from Wendy's. This is what I got. Revolting isn't it.

Just another morning...

I had a very funny morning. It started out insanely perfect. My kids got out of bed when I woke them up (even the hubs rarely does that!), got dressed quickly, and were completely ready and munching on dry cereal a half hour early! That's right, this time, when I told them to get their clothes ready on Sunday evening, they did. So there was no running from the basement, where the laundry is, to the second floor, where the kids are, trying to find something for them to wear.

We spent that miraculous extra half hour watching cartoons (I love Phineas and Ferb) and eating handfuls of dry Fruit Loops (daughter can't have milk though she dearly loves it). It was really an exceptional morning.

Then we got in the car and our normal morning returned. Hunt couldn't find his backpack anywhere and got super frustrated. In the end, it was fine cause Daddy's at home since he's working later hours and can run the backpack to him at school later.

But things really got interesting when we arrived at school. Their school has a morning care program but it doesn't start until 7 am, so parents are not to drop their kids off before then. We pulled up at 6:55. I told the kids we'd have to wait a few minutes before they could get out.

For some reason, this really irritated my daughter. She first argued that a few minutes didn't matter. Then she told me I was wrong, the gym (where morning care is) opened at 5 so they could go on in. She got angry with me, and much sighing and eye rolling ensued. As she was busily eye rolling, the clock hit 7 and I told them they could go on in.

I have to say I took great delight when I let them out and watched Hunt head in through the main doors. Then I watched as Rena headed to the gym doors. She walked to the doors, which had been open since 5 am *sheesh*, pulled one of the doors, and found it was locked! *gasp* She then tried the other door... locked!

As she walked back to the main doors, she was careful not to so much as look up cause she knew I was watching... and grinning. And I somehow found the strength to not roll down the window and yell "I told you so" as I drove away.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Black Velvet Baby

So I was asked to make some cupcakes for someone who is both a family friend and one of my kids' former teachers.  And, since I'm getting ready for the big celebration at their school, I also wanted to try some new piping techniques.  So, when the teacher planning the party chose red velvet cupcakes, I knew I could get creative.

Hence the Black Velvet Cupcake.

It's really simple actually.  It's Red Velvet, just with black food coloring instead of red.  I also used my favorite cream cheese frosting, but I painted a black stripe inside the bag so that it would pipe out with a stripe.

Now this wasn't my original plan, but I loved the way it turned out.  The original plan was to paint a gold stripe inside the bag, using Luster Dust mixed with vanilla.  But, just so everyone knows, that doesn't work with Luster Dust.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Lucy the demon dog strikes again

So I had a doctor's appointment yesterday and was really looking forward to getting it over with. I left work a bit early so I could run an errand, then remembered that I had forgotten my phone at home and, since it was a new doctor, wasn't exactly sure where I was going. So I ran back home to grab my phone.

I walked in the door of my apartment in a hurry, which is when Lucy decided to exit my apartment in a hurry. I ran after her, calling her for a while but, every time I got anywhere near her, she'd see me and run the other direction. After a few minutes of this, I got pretty effing pissed. I went home and looked for my phone.

While looking for the phone, I grabbed our house phone and called Not-So-Ex to let him know Lucy got out and I was supposed to be on my way to the doc (ok so the conversation involved a bit more yelling and a lot more profanity than that sentence, but you get the idea). As I finished talking to him, I see Lucy at our front door and drop the phone on our coffee table, causing the phone to come apart and the battery to fly in another direction.

I headed out after Lucy again, but the results are the same as the first time around. But this time I reached my boiling point and finally yelled, "Fine. I'm going home, Lucy." And that's exactly what I did. I went home, hooked our other dog, Jake the wonder mutt, up outside and started looking for my phone again.

A few minutes later, as I'm on my hands and knees looking for my phone, I hear a noise and turn around to see Lucy standing there getting a bite to eat and a drink. I guess the run away game was far less fun when there was no one to run from.

To tie up all the loose ends, I did find my phone - well actually my 8 yr old had to find it for me - and we found the battery to the house phone and put it back together. So everyone came out ok.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

The one where she's still kicking...

So I mentioned yesterday that I went to the doc and, luckily, all seems good. I still have some blood work that needs done but, unless there's something wacky going on with it, it looks like I'm in pretty decent shape.

But today holds another doctor's visit. This one's the one I dislike most... the one most women dread. I have a feeling you all know what I'm talking about. But I'll go, put my feet up, and hope they tell me I've gone mysteriously barren. Cause that would rock. LOL

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

An assorted pack of my thoughts...

1. Went to meet the new principal of my daughter's school last night. She goes to a rather small private school and the are making some huge strides forward. While private schools have a reputation for being white and upper class, her school is working hard to defy that stereotype. Next year she will have a teacher from Serbia. I feel for him the first few weeks cause I'm sure she's gonna butcher his last name on a pretty frequent basis.

2. I go to the doctor today. It'll be the first time I've gone for a "checkup" in a gazillion years. I went without insurance for three years and I still act as if I'm uninsured. So I'm trying to learn to take care of myself and having a real doctor to call when I'm sick or something is a big step in the right direction.

3. I need a bio and pic for the White movie website. I've never had any need for even a semi-professional press kit. It's kinda exciting. The director has started to call on me again for little things every now and then (cause he swears I'm just the best) and it's a nice feeling. Plus I'm hoping to get to a film festival in Kentucky next month. I should get that experience at least once.

4. I'm completely convinced that my dogs are possessed. Or at least Lucy is and she talks poor Jake into doing bad stuff. Today I came home from dropping Hunt off at school to see that they had found the package of the little pads you put out to house train puppies and they had shredded them and spread them all over the house. I walked in the door scolding them and Lucy ran in circles around me while Jake first hid in the stairwell and then made sure he never made eye contact. His guilty conscience is so damn endearing.

5. My garden is kicking! I have so many plants and, for the most part, they're doing exceptionally well. And I got an email yesterday saying that my strawberries are finally coming in and, with them, are several dwarf citrus trees. And yet another blueberry bush. For those of you who haven't heard my blueberry rant before, Jake has eaten several baby blueberry bushes. They must be tasty.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Just gettin' through today...

I had a long weekend that was spent helping my daughter write a paper about the Hubble Space Telescope (which I now know far too much about) and feeling yucky. As for the feeling yucky part, I really can't explain it much better than that. All I know is that, if I had a choice, I wouldn't have gotten out of bed and, despite having good food all around me, I had no desire to eat much of it.

While my ickyness is disconcerting, I'm not too worried. I have two doctor's appointments this week so, if anything is actually wrong, I'll find out.

But the thing that is running through my head over and over again is that I have a day off tomorrow. It's primary election time and I couldn't be happier. There are so many possibilities. I could sleep some. I could bake. I could head to State to get my new laptop hooked up with software. I could sit and watch episode after episode of Treme without there being a week between episodes (this one is looking REALLY likely). And, best of all, I could spend most of my day at home so there's not too much worrying about what the dogs might destroy when I'm gone.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Photo Friday

Me in my office this morning showing off my earrings

So yesterday evening I came home to a Fed Ex box full of goodies from I ♥ Cuppycakes! It was full of cupcake related stuff that I got for winning Cupcake Hero: Caramel. So here are some pics of the items that came to work with me this morning, especially my favorite item ever, the cupcake earrings!
The perfectest earrings ever!

The earrings on me

A leather cupcake keychain

PS - On a completely different note, if you're local, don't forget that tomorrow is the East End Yard Sale!!!! Woo Hoo! Can't wait!

Thursday, May 6, 2010


So I've been seriously busy at work this week and haven't posted too much. Plus I really haven't had too much to say.

While my work life may be in the eye of the storm right now as I try to get funds to 45 different organizations, my school life is in the calm before the storm. I'm currently in the process of scouting locations, casting, and planning my thesis film shoot. Right now things seem to be falling into place, but I know the storm is coming. If it was this easy, everyone would do it.

I go this evening to pick up my new Mac laptop. I got a great deal from an old friend so I'm psyched to get it all ready. Then another friend is going to look at it and get it ready to capture and edit. It'll be a big relief to know that all the technical stuff is in place and I'll be able to work from home instead of relying on the labs at State.

Right now is more or less a waiting game. Wait to solidify my actors... wait to secure my locations... wait to lock my crew in... wait to start finding wardrobe, makeup, and hair options... And I'm not great at waiting. LOL

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

What a way to start the morning

This is yet another thing I never thought I'd see... a movie I produced being reviewed by the New York Times. It continues to amaze me that people watch it and feel the same things I felt (although in easier to tolerate pieces) while we filmed. Such an incredible experience. That I could never live through again.

Anyway, the film is preparing for a quick theatrical run in NYC and the director will be there to do Q&A most nights. So if you're in NYC, check it out.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Happy Birthday Baby!

Today is Not-So-Ex's birthday! Yay!

And here's this year's birthday creation: Rexy's Choice Cupcakes. They're a shortbread/peanut butter cupcake with Reese's chopped up and mixed inside and topped with a peanut butter frosting.

Here's the recipe:
Shortbread/Peanut Butter Cupcakes
Makes 12-14 cupcakes / 350 F oven

What You’ll Need...
1/2 cup of butter, room temperature
1/2 cup of sugar
1/2 cup of brown sugar
1 good size spoon full of peanut butter
3 eggs, room temperature
1 cup of milk
1 cup of flour
1 1/2 cups of shortbread cookie crumbs
1 teaspoon of baking soda

1 teaspoon of baking powder
1/8 teaspoon of salt
Chopped Reese's

What You’ll Do...

1) Beat the butter for about 30 seconds until well creamed. Add the sugars and mix for 3 minutes using a paddle attachment until light and fluffy. Add the peanut butter.
2) Add the eggs, one at a time, being sure to beat for 30 seconds for each egg.
3) Place cookies in a food processor or in a plastic bag and crush into small crumbs and powder.
4) Mix together the flour, cookie crumbs, baking soda and powder, and salt. Add about 1/3 of the flour/cookie mixture to the butter mixture, then add some of the milk. Continue to add the ingrdients in a dry-wet-dry method, ending with the dry. Continue to mix until just combined. Mix in chopped Reese's.
5) Scoop into cupcake papers and bake for 15-18 minutes in a 350 F oven or until a cake tester comes out clean.

The frosting is one of my favorite peanut butter recipes because it doesn't get all greasy but is still really delicious!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

First blooms