In my life, I’ve picked up and moved from one city to the next over a dozen times. Each time saying goodbye to old friends, making new friends, and making a home and new memories in a brand new place. My last move, to Austin, was different. Not only did I stay, but when I moved here, so did over 700 of my colleagues. One day we were all working together on one campus, in one state. A few weeks later, we were all back together again, but everything else was different.
Many of us took root here, getting married, having kids, living out our passions, and spending a very big chunk of the time that we’ve been given here on Earth loving living in Central Texas. We’ve scattered. Some moved back home. Some moved on. Some have passed from this life. But, this week marks the 20 year anniversary of our migration. So, last night we held a reunion to celebrate. A hundred and fifty or so people turned out. And it was amazing!
I don’t know what the next 20 years holds for me, but I’ve enjoyed this last round. :)
TODAY, we headed to the lake, of course. The winds were blowing 20-30 knots. So Lori and Kurt jumped aboard Nirvana with us and we all headed out. This is a shot of Lori at the helm. Sunny. Windy. A tad chilly. But a wonderful day.
I’ve crossed off another project from my growing wanna-do list in my head this weekend. As you may have come to know through this blog, we like to make homemade pasta. A lot. Spaghetti, fettucine, ravioli, waddevah. It’s the food of the gods. Over the holidays, I ran across a fresh pasta hanger on Amazon and it looked so simple and easy to make, that I refused to put it in my cart. We have a gynormous wood shop out back. So I did a little recon and found what I needed already in the shop and… voila! Ye olde pasta hanger. I made it without glue, so I can take it apart to store easily in the cabinet.
Tonight I tried it out. So, here’s how it went down:
2 1/4 cups flour
stir / mix with a fork, blending the egg & flour crater from the inside out. You may not need all the flour. When the dough stands on its own, knead by hand for 10 minutes. Till it looks a like more or less like this:
Wrap dough ball in saran wrap and let sit at room temp for 30 mins or so.
Afterwards, I cut the dough ball into 3 equal-ish sided pieces, ready to put through the pasta roller.
I used our Kitchen-Aid roller, starting on setting 1 – ending on setting 5. Rolling and dusting the dough with flour several times on each setting. After rolling each of the three balls into a sheet at setting number 5, I cut each in half. I found that each of my six pasta sheets ended up making about 2 ounces of pasta – a serving. So 3 eggs + 2 1/4 cups of pasta yields approximately 6 servings.
Next, I put the fettucine pasta cutter on the Kitchen-aid
I hung each section on my new, handy-dandy pasta hanger. (Awesome!)
Then I threw the pasta into a pot of boiling water. I sauteed the other bits in a skillet with some olive oil and I let the flavor develop.
Wow. That was fast. January flew by. This weekend is very un-January-like, though – sunny, with temps inching into the 80s. I took this shot as the sun was dropping last night. The light through the trees was gorgeous.
We’ve decided to leave the signpost up that I made for last summer’s family reunion. It just seems right.
Here we are again – the last day of the year. 2015 brought lots of things: fun parties with friends, lots of visits from friends and family, more time spent in Washington State, a wonderful family reunion, the passing of my mom, happy moments on the lake, stargazing, beautiful spring flowers, roadtrips, the passing of a friend, cooking, sunsets, Seahawks (!), much more reading, breakups between good friends, exploring local breweries and wineries, El Niño rain, a nearly full lake, birthdays, more sunsets, amazing girlfriends and our trip to New Orleans, music, dancing, laughs, tears.
Tonight we are headed to a friend’s house to ring in the new year. Last year we hosted the New Year’s Eve party – here’s a shot from that night a year ago… how fast time flies:
I have much to learn about my new camera. I was waiting for this rare Christmas Day full moon to see if I could capture a decent shot. But, this morning the moon was already shrouded in the trees when I got out there. And tonight it was mostly overcast.
This is the best shot I took. I’ll keep working on it. :) Here it is, folks, the Full Cold Moon of Christmas Day 2015.
There’s quite a bit of action at the bird feeders lately. A vibrant red male cardinal has been lurking about, but I have not been able to get a shot of him. This afternoon, I saw a flash of red out back, and grabbed my telephoto. I had to take some shots through my less-than-crystal-clear sliding glass door, since the birds scatter whenever anyone ventures outside.
After a bit, I tried to quietly open the door and take a few shots … not great detail, but a little clearer, and you can see how much more vibrant the red is.
Went to see a screening of a restored 1978 made-in-Austin film tonight, said to have initiated the local indie film genre and inspired Robert Redford to start the Sundance Institute to support independent filmmakers, along with its annual film festival. The film was The Whole Shootin’ Match, at the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum. I enjoyed it quite a bit.
From time to time, we like to stop in at the pet store where Keeto found us. They have birds of all sizes, bunnies, fish, and the new resident — a large tortoise. His name is Columbus, because he walks around the store, exploring, all day. He’s a big one, over 2 feet long.
I guess my iPhone camera skills are ruined now that I have my new camera :) This was the best shot I took.