And…that’s it for me folks until next year.
It’s Festivus today so you can officially air all of your grievances if you feel like it. But given that I will probably be airing my grievances pretty much non stop this next year, I’ll take a pass for today.
Somehow I feel very unprepared for the holidays: presents are largely unwrapped, menus have yet to be planned, none of the outside decorations were put up (that I blame on the rain and my two week cough). But I’m going to enjoy the time with friends and family, but mostly, this year I’m going to enjoy the heck out of our New Year’s Eve pig out.
Nothing much for today or the rest of this week since today is dedicated to Thanksgiving Day preparations in order to make the actual day of Thanksgiving look as effortless as possible.
By the way, if you don’t want to bake a pie this Thanksgiving, Cookiebar has Ice Cream Pies. That’s right, a pie, but with ice cream. Pumpkin Spice or Banana Chocolate Fudge. They have to be ordered in advance. The husband is picking up ours.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
I’m back people! Miss me? Know I was gone at all? Wondering why I didn’t throw up profiles for the school board? All those questions and more will be answered in the next few posts.
So, yeah, I was gone since around the endish of September. Long story short, my parents are celebrating 40 years of being a parent unit and wanted their family to celebrate with them in Vietnam. So for the last two weeks and some odd days, the Blogging Bayport gang was melting in the heat and humidity (and occasionally downpour) in Vietnam. Just an FYI, I wasn’t born in Vietnam so going to Vietnam is not necessarily “going back” for me. It’s like going to any foreign country except for the huge leg up I have because I do understand the language, but speak it rather poorly. The husband likes to make fun because when I speak Vietnamese I tend to speak it in a high voice which is a huge difference from my normal speaking voice, but I explain that it’s because my facility with Vietnamese tops out at like third grade or something so I probably sound like a third grade girl. Anyway, it’s useful for overhearing people talking smack about you because people tend to be surprised when I speak Vietnamese to them. Probably because the existence of my white husband and my mixed kids. Or because most Vietnamese folks seemed to think I looked Taiwanese or Korean or Japanese. (See, even other Asian people have difficulty identifying where some Asian people’s roots are from)
Something light to end the week, a few weeks ago (you might have seen a link on your Facebook page) Livability.com, through a complex system of data crunching, ranked Alameda as the 45th most livable city in the United States. The highest ranking California city is Palo Alto which comes in at #5 for obvious reasons.
Hey look at that a “well-regarded health system” I’m sure some people would disagree vehemently with that, but I find it amusing that of all the things that is what Alameda’s awesomeness wraps up with.
I like food. I don’t know if I’ve expressed that sentiment here yet, but I do. I love eating. I love food. I even like cooking. Sometimes. Typically I like it if I can watch some really trashy Bravo tv shows in the background while I’m prepping. Anyway, one of my food/cooking heroes is Kenji Lopez-Alt from Serious Eats. I’ve linked to his awesome spatchcocking guide for Thanksgiving which I use every year to get the turkey just right. I have been anxiously waiting for the In N Out to open in order to try out some of the “secret menu” items that he detailed in his post about In N Out. I don’t know if I have it in me to try some of those items but I’m looking forward to ordering my fries “well done” and adding chopped chilis, just because you can!
But I digress. Anyway, apparently Kenji Lopez-Alt was in ALAMEDA last weekend. He has friends who live here people! Alameda coolness factor raised 10x.
But like any good foodie type person he ate while in Alameda. Wanna know where he went and what he thought?
Map has been updated, thanks everyone!
Between you and me, I have been obsessed with the idea of having a Little Free Library ever since I had read about the whole concept. Since I had first read about them, Alameda’s own number of Little Free Libraries has grown considerably. Of course, even while obsessed with the idea of a Little Free Library I hadn’t at the time actually considered having one myself because (1) I’m not handy and (2) neither is my husband. Anything involving woodworking would be an immediate pass.
But then I became obsessed with them again when I saw a pinterest board about unconventional Little Free Libraries and came across one that had been a newspaper vending box in its previous life. And I thought to myself, self, you can totally spray paint a newspaper box can’t you? And I answered, “of course!” I set off to find myself a newspaper vending box and devoted hours and hours of searching on the Internet for one, but came up empty. I would looking longingly at the ones around town and looked sad and neglected and wondered if anyone would miss that particular newspaper vending box.
I then moved on to various other ideas and as my husband saw me eyeing a huge outdoor hurricane lamp that I thought might be a candidate for my Little Free Library he asked me what I was going to do with that. When I explained to him my Little Free Library idea he said that he would be able to help me build something. And so I decided to share with him my dream project which I had dismissed early on as completely out of my scope of abilities: the TARDIS. For folks that are not Doctor Who fans, it’s this.
Late breaking news yesterday from Board Member Mike McMahon who tweeted out a link to a Southern California school district announcing the hiring of AUSD’s superintendent as their own.
I’m sure there are an equal number of people who will be sad at her departure and others that might be popping champagne bottles. I’m really not that surprised that the Superintendent is leaving though because even with her numerous supporters the kind of negativity that she faced from her detractors must have been soul sucking.
Thinking about the selection process to find her replacement is already giving me an ulcer.
The unfortunate passing of Alameda’s long time poet laureate has left a vacancy in the “Poet Laureate” title. So the City of Alameda is looking for applicants who are interested in becoming Alameda’s next head poet.
For those that are curious about the job description:
- The Poet Laureate writes poems throughout the year and participates in community events, education, and readings.
- The Poet Laureate will write at least one commemorative poem to be read at the City Council meeting at which their appointment is made
- The Poet Laureate encourages citizens to express their literary creativity
- The Poet Laureate will promote and showcase original works of citizens
- The Poet Laureate creates works of the written word that commemorates special events in the life of the City of Alameda
Nothing for the rest of the week but I just wanted to wish everyone a very happy Thanksgiving.
Today is a day of prep for me where I spend all day in the kitchen prepping for the big day to make the actual Thanksgiving day look effortless and breezy. So I’ll probably pop Lord of the Rings (extended version) into the TV and chop veggies for stock and make pie — this year it will be pumpkin and pecan — and an apple crisp instead of pie.
For those that were wondering, the spatchcocking method attempt last year turned out wonderfully and was so super fast. Also the oil-less fryer worked awesome as well and both were well received so I’m doing the same again this year.
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Continuing on warm fuzzy feelings, just wanted to share the bit of news now that the fourth bore of the Caldecott Tunnel is open, a current Lincoln Middle School student (but a student at Otis when the entry was first submitted) was one of the six students whose design was selected for a medallion to decorate the entrance to the fourth bore. Congratulations to Ellina Coutts and her awesome design:
And speaking of awesome things, for those of you that were living in a hole on Friday, you may not have heard about San Francisco’s BatKid who saved the City of San Francisco/Gotham from some dastardly villains. The topic was all over social media and mainstream media on Friday. To recap for the hole people, the Make-A-Wish Foundation granted the wish of a five year old with leukemia, which is in remission, his wish of being “Batman” for the day. There was a lot of gushing on Twitter and a lot of great photos from both professional and amateur photographers alike. As most people opined on Friday, it was a day when warm fuzzies won out over cynicism. Thousands of people came out to support making BatKid’s special day one to remember and it really is quite impressive how people will mobilize for a good cause.
It’s that time again, the time when people actually think about, “hey, I’ve been really blessed this year maybe I should give something back.” That give something back can be in the form of money or time, but if you have some spare change and/or some spare time, here’s a few places that you might want to donate your excess to.
First up, Turkey time. The Food Bank needs turkeys but would prefer if you kept them at your house because of space issues:
If you would like to donate a frozen turkey, we will accept them during our Food Donation Hours (click here) . Since we have limited storage space, if you can bring them by close to the November 26th distribution date that would be much appreciated. If you would like to bring them on the 26th, we will be at our warehouse location, 650 West Ranger from 9am to 1pm. Additionally, we will gladly accept turkeys, hams, etc. throughout the November and December holidays.
Safeway is running a $0.59 per pound for a turkey with a purchase of $30 or more of groceries, so a great deal if you can swing it. I think you are limited to one turkey though. I haven’t checked the prices at other stores, but sometimes stores run a buy one get one free deal.
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