Thursday, November 22, 2012

" the presence of pie."

Cooking for me is an ultimate act of love and respect- for the food and ingredients themselves, for my partner, for friends, for my face. In the kitchen I feel like I am dancing, painting, singing, ultimately creating tasty harmony. It makes me very happy. I also have a LOT in my life to be thankful for each and every day... which means...

Thanksgiving is one of my top two favorite holidays Evar. 
The other being Halloween.

For the past five or six years (?!) my Seattle family and I have spent the delicious holiday in Sun Valley at the folks house. All crammed in the house together, family meetings included, we love and laugh the long weekend away. K-Schlo and Thompson have always ruled in the kitchen, churning out a feast of Edwardian depth. 

While in the presence of chefery genius like theirs I picked up a few tips. While I was not in charge of any thing near as important as the turkey, stuffing, green beans, potatoes... well... I was not in charge of much outside of salad dressings and ambrosia salad (another post for another time) I WAS allowed to watch, ask questions, taste, and suggest slight alterations. I felt very special. And I learned. To take risks, to throw in a dash of this, to sample the wine while cooking, to create with style. What I learned most was to trust in recipes but to ultimately trust in your own tastes.

This year we are staying in Seattle for the holiday! 
DO YOU KNOW WHAT THIS MEANS!??! ALL of the siblings and family members are DOING A PORTION OF THE COOKING! This is huge, people. HUGE. 

For Thanksgiving Dinner this year I am contributing with the following...

Baked brie and fig toasted fillo bites

Veg side dish-
Honey and ginger roasted yams

***Keep in mind when you see the following photos- 
USUALLY I am competent in the kitchen. 
I make elaborate meals from scratch and they mostly taste pretty good. 
I DO NOT bake very often.
 In fact I had to go back to the store three times and attempted the pies twice. 
Pretty sure the filling of the burnt one is still delish!*** 


Pecan pies 
(Second try on the left. Sampling the burned...)

Pies from John Darling's grandmother
 Nobie Harding's early edition of 
The Joy of Cooking

Cookie with sweet cream and raspberry bites
(the cookie cups would not come out of pan. 
I hacked at them. They are not pretty but they taste good.)

I will be posting photos tomorrow of how amazing it all turned out, the photos above are not very appetizing and do not do this meal justice. Expect amazing food porn tomorrow to remind you of all the filthy gluttonous things you did on Thanksgiving! Oh the Gluttony.

List of Thanks
-My family's health, love, and enduring support- my John Darling, JoSchlo, Sissy, Androolius, Lala, Roddy, W&K Schlo, Thompson, my five little nephew munchkins. 

-The love and support of my creative and ever evolving friends-  Mrs. Kennedy and Mrs. Maple, Sista Trista, SDipity... and so many more. Without you this world would not sparkle as bright. 
"And you were there, and you were there..."

Personal Wishes-
May I be an effective force on this world and leave happiness and love in my path. 
To change the world one meal at a time :) 

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you. 
Love and Light,

“We must have a pie. Stress cannot exist in the presence of a pie.” 
― David MametBoston Marriage

“I am not a glutton - I am an explorer of food” 
― Erma Bombeck

“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.” 
― Oscar WildeA Woman of No Importance

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A Week of Joyous Announcements part 2 of 2

I recognize that now that I am newly married that at first glance the Week of Joyous Announcements blog may look like I am making a BIG announcement 're: a baby of my own'. 
SIKE OUT! NOPE! NO BABIES IN MY BELLY! Just proud of my nephew being born and this little gem....

I am pleased to announce the official launch of JSchlo Jewelry's commerce website!

Etsy is not the place for me so I have decided to use my own site to display creations that are for sale. Right now I only have earrings and necklaces posted but soon I hope to have an assortment of creations from gift boxes to paintings to everything in between. Since this site is very new, please let me know if there are any issues while using it so that it can be quickly remedied. 

Check back later this week for the Holiday Coupon Code!
Everything on the site will be on sale! Just in time for gift shopping!

(It sounds like an annoying holiday advertisement. Sorry. I will have to get used to sounding like that I guess. Whatever. Go to my website. Buy my pretty shit and help my little family move to Texas!)  brought to you by my amazing Breville espresso machine
and my patient husband John Darling

Bloggin music- Nick Waterhouse, Jessie Ware, Frou Frou

A Week of Joyous Announcements! (Part 1 of 2)

Une Semaine de Joyeuses Annonces!

My family is very important to me. We are big, we are loud, we are spread out, we bicker, there are segments, we are proud, we love, we love to laugh, and we are resilient... And this week we grew in numbers! I have two sisters, two brothers, and now I have 5 (FIVE!) beautiful nephews!

Welcome to this crazy and beautiful family 
Finnegan Walter!

On Thursday I had the privilege of helping my Sissy and my Brosef-in-law while they had their second son. We woke up early, the three of us drove to the hospital, placed bets on the length and weight of the baby (Brosef won. Surprisingly big baby), we read the children's Sun Signs by Linda Goodman (oldie but a classic for Sissy and me), and I did my best to be the supportive sister/aunt. They wheeled Sissy and Brosef away and when they came back to the room they brought with them a football shaped little stranger, perfect in every way. There was crying when I heard his name. First name Finnegan. Middle name Walter. <3
My sissy was amazing. Brosef was patient and kind. They were both strong and beautiful throughout the next three days. I stayed with them as much as I could and gave an extra set of hands and distraction where ever needed. In the mean time...this baby and I bonded.

I have five nephews. I have babysat MAYBE three times in my life. I am NOT well versed in 'Child'. Though many times throughout each day I may ACT like a child, I have never been comfortable around them. They cry, they are irrational, there is no logic to the things they do, they cannot always be consoled, they shit in their pants.... needless to say- they (usually) FREAK ME OUT.
Surprisingly... not this one.
This little boy has taught me about the scary unknowns of children. He doesn't freak me out. I want to give him all of the attention. All of those little micro-expressions? ADORABLE and hilarious. Crying? I do not run for the door. I am a proud Aunt Sissy.
Congratulations to my beautiful Sissy and my patient Brosef.

One thing about moving out of the NW... I will be far away from my ever growing nephews Chancellor, Rhys, and Trentan... Logan and Finn. I hope it is not too late with them. I would love to be able to tell silly stories to each of them about funny things they did as little kids like my Aunties and Uncles do with my brothers and sisters. Thank goodness for Skype.

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope that you get to enjoy the festivities with family, friends, chosen family, or if a day of quiet is your thing- rejoice.

(My nephews big feet! NOT MY baby! :D)

blogging music: she&him, iron&wine, billie holiday, louis armstrong

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Obligatory Introductions- Constant Transition

Everyone is doing it. Why not me? 

About Meeeeeee:
29, third gen Alaskan, living constantly in transition, recently married, no plans for children (or pets, or plants) in the very near future... Madly in love theatre, with creating. Producing in every form. Examining color. EATING. Traveling...and also eating. Caffeine, Pinterest, FB, and gmail addict... And someday I will get three stars on every level of 'Angry Birds Space'.

I spoke with someone recently that was shocked by the constant state of transition John and I have developed over the last few years.
Graduating, being on the road, getting engaged, moving, unemployment, moving again, married, more moving...
It feels like forever since I have been able to say-
"This is where I plan to be for the next year.... or more"
I have had to adapt quickly to only living today, planning tomorrow, and hoping for next week.
I love to plan everything well in advance and it has been humbling and quieting to just BE HERE. RIGHT NOW. ONLY NOW. Transition is what I DO... always.. for now.


The Big Drive & SE Asia
In August 2010 I graduated with a BA in Theatre (minor in Art) From the University of Alaska Fairbanks. One month later my future husband and I began a journey that would mark the beginning of our next life phase. We call it "The Big Drive".

I packed up my car (aka Fancy), put my life in boxes (and in my moms storage locker), and on the first day of snow set off on a solo one way trip to Virginia. After spending nearly a month with my sister-love Trista in a sleepy VA town my love John flew in to join us.

John and I then spent the next 3 1/2 months transversing the continent. VA-TX-ID-TX-VA-TX and everything in between.

Let me tell you the secrets to examining compatibility-
Spend 3 1/2 months together in a Honda.
Drive 27,000+ miles through all weather conditions.
Sleep in the car a couple of times.
Throw in a few life-threatening experiences.
= Break up or Stay together forever*
*One of these things is bound to happen after The Big Drive.

John and I left Fancy at his fathers farm in N. Texas and boarded a plane for New York City.
I had graduate school auditions, John had a big number birthday to celebrate.
I got turned down for grad school, he got older. Needless to say we had a blast.

We then boarded another plane- this one for SE Asia!
Together John and I trekked through Thailand, Cambodia, and Laos.
We met amazing people, saw beautiful and tragic things, ate, ate, ate... delicious.
By the way- I took a cooking course in Thailand. Everything I make in the kitchen is now informed by the simple knowledge from that course. Be warned.

After 4 countries, something like 32 states, 27,000 road miles, and 6 1/2 months it was time to see another Alaskan summer. We joyfully returned to the Land of the Midnight Sun just in time for spring.

In August 2011 John proposed. I said yes. It was the best trip we have ever taken. We refer to this trip as "The Best Week Ever".

October 2011 we packed up everything. This time it was for good. After 28 years I was finally moving out of Alaska to see what all the fuss was about.
What do you mean it doesn't have to be -50F? What? Dresses in the winter? Crazy talk I say!
I flew to Texas to pick up Fancy and brave a solo drive following California Coast Highway 1. This road is full of beauty and hairpin turns. Someday the California coast will be my home.

I arrived in Seattle, we found a tiny old apartment, settled in. For a second.
After a momentous trip to Europe with friends we moved AGAIN. This time over to Lake Washington to caretake a new house of my fathers. It is tranquil and has a kitchen that I spend most of my time experimenting in. I have an art room. We do not leave much. I am happy.

We got married on August 18th 2012 in Girdwood AK with all of our friends and family present. I tear up just thinking about how much love and fun was in that room. More on this later maybe.


The days following Thanksgiving I will be in Houston looking for housing...
because at the beginning of December John and I are once again on the move.

...Moving to Houston Texas!!

No matter how much I plan or prepare there is always transition coming, always change.
This has changed my ideas about the permanence of anything including owning things, plans, circumstances, paychecks etc.
I hope that in Houston I can settle in for enough time to connect to a community.
That is what I miss most about my home town... community, a sense of belonging, sharing my creations, exploring creative outlets within the community.

But for now... constant transition.
Back on the road.

Jenny Schlo-Hard