Okay, I like strawberries, which is good considering the region I live in. However, one of my friends heard that I occasionally make strawberry jam and decided to bring me some berries, which was really sweet of her. TWO FLATS of strawberries! So now, since Sunday, I have been desperately finding ways to use up strawberries before they go bad (other than the obvious smoothies, milkshakes, and straight-up sugared options). So far, I've come up with these (links will take you to recipes or approximations thereof):
Strawberries & Cream bread. I'm not a big fan of fruity breads as a general rule, but MAN, is this stuff good!! Strawberries and walnuts, yummy!! I made two loaves and took one to the theater to feed the animals (they're in tech for Music Man atm, so I figured people could use the sustenance), cut one in half to bring into the dojahng tonight and kept the falling-apart-bits for myself, because, well, I just couldn't bring myself to get rid of all of it. (The trick to this one is make sure you have FRESH berries - frozen ones will make it soggy.)
The refrigerator's stash so far - two Strawberry Cheesecake Trifles (which are also quite yummy and also got sent to the theater), a pitcher of strawberry lemonade (I guessed and just used my standard lemonade concoction plus a cup of strawberries mostly crushed. I haven't tried it yet.), a Strawberry Strawberry Pie sans Cool Whip (I was going to send this to the theater, but it looks too good to give up. Sorry! I'm going to add the Cool Whip as I eat it, because I don't want to waste it), and a gallon-sized bag of whole berries that are going to Mrs. S tonight, because she was silly and said that she'd take some.
The pantry's strawberry stash - a dozen jars of jam (a couple will go to said friend) and the start of a strawberry liquour (which seems to end up being a sweet strawberry vodka, but it takes about six weeks, so we'll see). And the sad part? All of those recipes only used up ONE FLAT! I still have these to freeze and use later:
Three full quart bags, half a dozen "snack" bags, and the gallon bag that's going to the dojahng today. I had to clean out my freezer to make room, which was probably a good thing, but still. I'm really really sick of strawberries right now. They don't even sound good anymore. Where's the chocolate??
And, in knitting news, I have almost an entire strip done on the afghan:
It actually photographs a lot better than it looks irl, I think. You see more of the optical illusion in the pictures anyway. I think having the next strip, with the dark purple framing the squares from underneath, will help it more. I do like, it though. There's one more square to go in this strip (now that I'm done with strawberries, maybe I'll finally get a chance to knit again!) and then four more strips after this one, all with the grey squares growing slightly in size. I think this will be pretty cool when it's done.
Also, here's the start of the new Twizzle scarf:
It's a Diagonal Lace Scarf (Mountain Colors' pattern), super super simple lace, and shows off the yarn REALLY well. Unfortunately, the camera doesn't - the yarn is actually much much more royal purple than shows in the picture. I love love love this color! I haven't worked on the scarf since the flight back to Cali (again, stupid strawberries), but I'm looking forward to putting a little love into it this weekend.
I finally got a chance to ask Sir about my midterm the other night. He told me that my open-hand form was easily a "full grade up" this time compared to last time. He said that I looked much more confident with it and he was really pleased with it. I said that I'd been nervous because it had felt super-exceedingly slow (I finished my form dead last out of my group, and I was grouped with two second degrees whose forms are slightly longer), but he said that it timed out right where it should have. So now I have to work on keeping that up and not getting nervous and speeding up. I've also learned my entire ssahng jeol bahng form (Mr. R taught me the first half before I left for Illinois and I taught myself most of the second half - it's the same moves just left-handed - before coming back to tkd class on Monday) and Sir's had me working on that almost exclusively so far this week. It's a...different...weapon to get used to. You definitely have to be smooth with it, and, well, that's hard for me to say the least. He's given me a couple drills to work on besides the techniques in the form, though, and it's easy to work on at home (as long as you keep it in your hands and it doesn't go flying...ahem...). It also gets a LOT of outside attention from people walking by the school, which is unnerving but I'm trying to make myself get used to it for when I midterm. I still kind of like the bahng mahng ee form better, but I have a while before I have to decide which one I want to use to test.
Also, things haven't seemed quite so "they're all picking on me!" lately (although I did get Mrs. S on my case last night with both distance from the bags and then not holding the medicine ball correctly during floor work) but then, like I said, I've also been pretty exclusively working with a new weapon which deems lots of mistakes rather necessary. It's been really nice having just adults in the regular tkd class - we actually have ROOM now!! Sir, Mrs. S and Mr. R also went to a huge convention last week and brought back what sounds like a lot of cool ideas (Mrs. S said something about a Cardio Fight program, which she said was kickboxing, jujitsu and something else, that she's looking into for the kickboxing class and we've had some new drills in the other classes). Sir told us last night that there's a very strong possibility that we're going to be gradually shifting away from the Songham style to a style called Ki Nung (I think, I can't get the website to come up right now), because he feels their form techniques flow better into sparring and self-defense, but he's still doing some research on it. He showed us the white/orange/yellow belt form last night, and I gotta say, it looks a lot cooler and more fun than the Songham one. (Because the coolness factor clearly decides everything in martial arts! ;-) ) Anyway, that should be interesting in the coming weeks.
Speaking of class, gotta jet to make kickboxing!