Wednesday, November 16, 2011


First: I made souffle Tuesday, for the first time. It turned out pretty well, though I burned the top just a tad. I would post pictures, but it was kind of ugly. So, I will go to Thai Pan trading, buy a souffle dish, and try it again. Then I will post pictures, when it is beautiful.

Also, I made delicious pomegranate-blueberry barbeque sauce and put it over steak and rice for lunch today. That was delicious, made more so because it was almost a disaster. It have about 5 times the vinegar it needed to, and so I negated some with citrus and some with sugar. I really need to write this recipe down, but not right now.

Mostly what that translates into is that I just loaded the pictures on to Facebook instead of here, anyway and I'm tired, I'm getting up in about 5 hours so as to prep dinner before class (And, you know, do the peer edit of a paper on Machiavelli's The Prince before it's due at 9:30am). Oh, college. How I love you.

I just found a method of cooking dulce de leche in a crock pot. Conveniently, I happened to have borrowed a six-quart crock pot from a guy friend of mine earlier this afternoon. How wonderfully marvelous!! I hope this works, and that my can of milk doesn't explode while I am attempting a peaceful night's rest.

I really do have more to my life than food. One of these days, I will post about something that is not food.

Today is not that day.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

More on Food

So this afternoon, whilst I was attempting to decide on dinner menus for my pseudo-dinner-group (I cook for a guy from my past ward twice a week), a specialty menu (MSG-free) for a group of 7 (including me, who cannot eat dairy or eggs and only limited wheat), dessert ideas for Christmas gifts, and two party menus (appetizers, desserts, drinks for a Christmas open house for approximately 75 people; a 21-year-birthday party for my Beer cousin), I realized something.

I work with food a lot.

A lot, a lot.

The thing I don't do a lot of is use recipes, or measure things. This makes it mildly inconvenient to do a market order for other people to do my grocery shopping, or to track the amounts of food used to properly fill out a cost evaluation of a meal.

This led me to a few conclusions:

--I should marry someone who doesn't mind doing dishes.
--I should marry someone who likes food.
--I should marry someone who...well...I should marry someone, so I have someone to eat my food.

Also, perhaps I should two kitchens. That'd be nice.

This last point prompts me also to mention that, in how much I actually use food, I don't actually eat that much of it. Or perhaps I just don't eat very well. I don't really cook unless I'm feeding someone else, and by the time I've finished cooking, I'm not very hungry. Even if I don't snack while I'm cooking. Also, food tastes better using ingredients I'm allergic to, which is unfortunate.

Which makes me a little annoyed that I am the size that I am. I definitely look like a cook...I just don't eat like one.


I should eat more vegetables. And perhaps I should stop being broken, so I can get fit again.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Of Neckties and Suit Coats

Know, first, who you are; and then adorn yourself accordingly. ~Epictetus

There is a power in the way people dress.
This is a fact of life so pervasive of our culture that I don't feel it needs to be proven in tremendous detail.

That being said: There are few things more attractive in this world then a well-dressed man. Seriously. Nice shoes, good trousers, button-down shirt, and a great tie. Flirty smile, clean hair with minimal product and a good cut...whew. Classic. Looks SO good.

Or, perhaps even better: a man in uniform. Military...scouts....servicemen...even marching band. I don't know what it is about it.
All I know is, I'm a huge fan.

I love the look so prevalent at BYU: clean-cut guys, frequently seen in a suit and tie. Even if it's not a suit and tie--just dressing well makes men look so good. Not just attractive: good. I am a firm believer that dress should reflect who you are. And who are we all? Children of God. Unique in our talents, abilities, passions, and personalities, but in the end, all are children of God. We are blessed to have access to tremendous resources at this university; we are preparing ourselves to be better tools in the Lord's hands. Many of these young men (and not-as-young men) hold the Priesthood and ordained to offices in that priesthood. They have made covenants with the Lord, at baptism, and for many, in the temple of God.
They know who they are. And they dress themselves accordingly!
That's not to say they walk around in suits all the time, or that if they did so they would somehow be more righteous. That is not true.
But they dress respectfully. They don't have outrageous hair styles or colors, or piercings, or tattoos. They wear neat, acceptable clothing appropriate for the settings and occasions they find themselves in. Essentially, they follow the Honor Code.
And I love it.

Men are awesome.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Demicans and Republocrats

So, in preparation for my Civ class's discussion on Aristotelian rhetoric, I began reading about the 2003 invasion of Iraq and the preceding debates (in class, we were to pretend it was just before 2003, and to argue for or against the invasion, basing the arguments on the topoi present in Aristotle's discourse regarding deliberative rhetoric). The professor was to split the "Senate" at the beginning of class along partisan lines, so I wasn't sure which point I would be arguing.

As I was browsing Wiki, my roommate Dani (from Ghana) started asking me questions about the US political system. I answered a few basic questions, but those mostly led to other questions. Soon, my Civ homework transformed into a full-on explanatory discussion of US politics to my international roommates; topics from Democrat/Republican vs. "democratic-republic," origin of the bi-partisan system, basic platforms of each party currently and the evolution of those platforms through time, liberal/conservative vs. Democrat/Republican, scope of governments, the invasion of Iraq vs. the invasion of Afghanistan, partisan division on issues such as abortion, national security, marriage, health care, and business; also the method of electing a new president, from beginning to end. o.o

Holy American Heritage review session, Batman.

I enjoyed it. I was glad that I remembered as many details as I did.

Also, I'm glad I'm not going into politics full-time.

More on this subject later.

God Bless America.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Count Your Many Blessings

I really don't like staying up late and getting up early.
Or going to bed early (in the morning) and getting up late.

However, some things I do like:

My job
Getting a raise at my job
picking an apron at work that already has a knot in the neckstrap
J-Dawgs Special Sauce
J-Dawgs Special Sauce...whenever I want
Good grades on tests
Easy tests
Finishing homework on time
Catching mistakes in homework BEFORE handing it in...with time to fix it!
Discovering new, beautiful places
getting to work on time
free food
coupons for free stuff
BYU Football
...BYU Football--winning
V-8 Fusion (juice)
Good memories of home
Memories of Ridgecrest
Whitney Wonnacott (The little one, not the one engaged to Jimmer...though she's probably pretty cool, too)
Lewiston Bengal Football
...Lewiston Bengal Football--winning
Robert calling me about girl stuff
cute pictures of my niece, Lily
good weather
modern technology
text messaging
Magic Erasers
"Don't Worry, Be Happy"
Really Good Hugs
Roommate families
Cute stuffed animals
Cute real animals
secure houses
ice cream
the gym
going to the temple
Friday (Yes....the song. Gotta get down on Friday.)
Paying Tithing
Good books
Friends that let me use their cars
Not getting busted for stealing a car
General Conference
Home teachers
the scriptures
the Book of Mormon
My spaceship/construction/dinosaurs blanket. It's pretty much the bomb-dot-com
People asking me about my day
people bringing me food so I don't have to cook
the peace that comes from the Gospel
looking pretty

So, all in all, it was a pretty good day. Even if I am exhausted.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

New Directions

What do blog readers want to hear about, anyway?  I feel like this blog has no direction, so I tend to not write in it. Not because I have nothing to say, rather, I feel I have too much to say and am unsure as to which of those say-ings to post on this blog.  Life updates? Political opinions?  Crafty pictures? Academic insights? Random life moments? Recipes? Reflections?

Feedback would be wonderful. I want to write regularly. What do you want to read?

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Mortal Certainties

"When we make a change, it's so easy to interpret our unsettledness as unhappiness, and our unhappiness as a result of having made the wrong decision. Our mental and emotional states fluctuate madly when we make big changes in our lives. Some days we could tight-rope across Manhattan, and other days we are too weary to clean our teeth. This is normal. This is natural. This is change." --Jeanette Winterson

I am so glad that I found this quote. It captures much of what I have been feeling this summer. June and July of this year have seen many, many changes in my life and in me as an individual. Many plans gone awry, many circumstances unanticipated.

School seems like a different world than here-- a world I shall return to shortly. I phrase it as "return," but everything feels so different now, I hardly know what to expect. Different from the now, but not returning to the past. A completely new chapter. Nearly every part of my reality has shifted, but is not erased. This makes the change even more apparent in my eyes, as reminders of the former state of things remain. This emphasizes the unsettled-ness, the strangeness, and (occasionally) the wariness of the unknown.

And, the one certainty I am left with in this mortal realm?

Something will happen.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Camra Dependency

I've been thinking for a while now about starting some sort of food blog. I love to cook, and I usually make my own recipes. Sometimes it's out of a conceited desire to get my food exactly how I want it, but usually it's simply because I'm too lazy to measure things and I like to be independent.

The focus of the food blog would be not simply giving recipes, but giving tips and general information to improve the reader's skill as a cook. Plus, I learn new things all the time and it would be a great place to record ideas.

The biggest problem with the food blog is the camera. One of the best things about food is that it is beautiful, and many instructions ought to be given visually rather than through words.

I don't do pictures.

Not that I mind pictures being taken. Remember the too-lazy-to-measure thing? Yeah, that laziness definitely bleeds over into the hey-lets-stop-what-we're-doing-every-two-seconds-to-take-a-picture department.

What say you, blog readers? How do I get over my camera laziness (and recipe-writing laziness, and measuring laziness) in order to bring you delicious, nutritious, and visually pleasing foodstuffs? ( least two out of three, delicious being subject to personal preference).

Sunday, June 26, 2011

For Whom the Bell Tolls

No man is an island,

Entire of itself.
Each is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thine own
Or of thine friend's were.
Each man's death diminishes me,
For I am involved in mankind.
Therefore, send not to know
For whom the bell tolls,
It tolls for thee.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Clean Slate

The funny thing about
starting clean
is: sometimes you have to
some things.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

California Dreamin'

I recently returned home from southern California. I went down there to assist in my friend's wedding reception as a surprise to her. I had only been to California once before, in Anaheim, with my jazz choir and concert band (we played at Disney Land). I fell in love with California the first time I went, and this love was rekindled almost immediately when I returned for my second visit. Though I visited a much different-looking part of Cali, the love remained, and I remembered this poem scene-sketch I wrote on my first visit.

Palms and Graffiti

the paLm trees sway amongst

the grAffittied barriers of California highways as

the buSinessman sits next to

the pAinted pierced girl of the streets.

the maN sips iced coffee whilst scanning the tourists excitement; the other slurps

the manGo Jamba she bought at the shop cross the Block.

the sweEt smells of citrus mingle with the stench of

the milLion exhaust pipes, peoples, palms;

the enErgy of diversity embodied throughout this city of

palmS and graffiti

I love palm trees. And California. I am very excited to go back (hopefully this next time, I'll actually get to a beach!).

Ride a Purple Pelican

No blog mini series involving both Sabina and poetry would be complete without a tribute to my favorite poetry book of all time, Ride a Purple Pelican.

I first began “reading” using this book. I would memorize the poems and the associated picture, then recite the poems in rhythm to my little sister. She would soon get bored (or scared of me—that was frequent) and scoot away quickly, and I was left to myself with the book. I had a few favorites, and a few that made me cry (and I still don’t know the one about the gander and the geese and the sea, or whatever). I think my love of words and rhythm, rhyme, and poetry were—if not born from, then fed by—this book.

Late One Night in Kalamazoo

Note: Young Sabina had a hard time saying her “l”s, and they usually came out as “y”s. This title sounded much more like “Yate—One—Night—In—Kayimazoo!”

Late one night in Kalamazoo, the baboons had a barbeque

The kudus flew a green balloon, the poodles yodeled to the moon.

The monkey strummed a blue guitar, the donkey caught a falling star

The camel danced with the kangaroo, late one night in Kalamazoo.

At least, that’s what I remember it being.

Poor Potatoes

Note: This one always made me cry, and I could rarely finish it. Not sobbing, just teary-eyed and a little choked up. My mom read it to me a lot (maybe she thought I was cute when I cried?) so I hear it in her voice. We grew potatoes, and I was happy to dig them up out of the ground.

Poor potatoes underground, never get to look around

Never get a chance to see butterfly or bumblebee

Never see the blue, blue sky

What a waste of all those eyes!

Like I said, these are what I remember, what, 17 years later? Perhaps it has been longer than that since I memorized them. The other one I liked the best was “Bunington Bunny.” I can only remember one stanza:

“Rumpity tumpity rumpity tum, Bunington Bunny is beating the drum.

He doesn’t look up and he doesn’t look down, all through the rumpity tumpity town”

The rhyme continues, but that’s the part that stuck—the rhythm of the poem, and the proper way to focus when you march. My mother also took the opportunity to explain how to properly wear a traditional marching band hat, called a shako (yes, I was no older than 5. Probably younger). This poem was my gateway drug into the world of drumcorps and later marching band. Go, Mom! Start ‘em when they’re young.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Long Curly Hair

As most of you know, I have very, very curly hair. Generally unruly, certainly frizzy, and certainly easier to take care of when short.

However, I like wearing my hair long.

I have cut it short only twice since I got permission to grow it out(Hereafter referred to as the Traumatic Haircuts of Despair). THD Number One occurred when my roommate Tara Hill tricked me into getting it cut--long story, but there was a bet that should not have ever come to fruition, and then it did, and my word is my bond. Therefore, I technically chose to get it cut of my own free will, but I still blame Tara.
The second time was less under my control. I had an unfortunate physical ailment the last two Fall semesters, and the first bout of it forced me to get a fairly traumatic A-line haircut. It was cute. Many people did not understand quite why I was so upset about it. I realized there was an underlying reason (aside from the fact that I look fabulous in cascading curls). This poem was written between Traumatic Haircut of Despair: Numbers 1 and 2, and provides a bit of explanation. It is on a more serious note then the above, rather trite, introduction.

My Mama’s Curls

“Why don’t you cut your hair short again? It’d look so cute that way!”

I looked back at you closely, not sure of what to say.

My mind’s eye sees a mem’ry, so long ago, so clear

Of my mama on the telephone, and I was standing near.

She tossed her head back and she laughed— A truly joyful sound

And on her finger, auburn-red, she twirled her hair around.

It wrapped around that finger, always just the same

A pretty fan of brown, gold, red; and never truly tame.

She rubbed the curl across, stroking gently with her thumb

Then let go and toss it back, then take another one

I snuck around behind her to try to do the same

Watching oh so closely, then went to grab my mane

Of hair. I then remembered, with a sudden sorrowful sigh

That I’d gone to get a haircut, now my hair would not comply

As I tried to wrap my finger. I then began to cry

I told myself right then and there, that someday I would be

Exactly like my mama, the woman of my dreams.

That mem’ry of the phone call, and the twisted lock of hair

Stayed with me then and always, but never had I shared

The reason that I always felt a love for curled long hair.

“Hello?” you said, and waved at me, “Sabina, are you there?”

“Oh,” said I, now with a smile,

“I guess I just like it better long.”

--Sabina Säfsten, 3/23/09 (1:30am)

More poem!

Looking back through old computer files, I found quite a few poems. Some of them I wrote, some of them I memorized for a class or kept simply because I liked them. Perhaps I will share more of them here. Feel free to comment or give me new topics to write about. Actually, that would be great! More topics to write about!