the best-laid plans

We had such glorious schemes for October.  OH, we had such plans.

 

While we do our level best not to go falling off the Cliff of Seasonal Crazy into the Bottomless Pit of Holiday Madness, we do write ourselves one giant free pass with respect to fall.  Fall, generally, and October, specifically.   I don’t know what Jenn’s excuse for it is, honestly, but I maintain my right to revel is grounded in the fact that I spent the first decade-plus of my life in a Land Without Seasons, and the next decade or so in a place where autumn was that one week where everything got yellow and then boom, naked trees.  The novelty of deciduous trees suddenly putting on a show of slow emergence of a riotous rainbow of colors while the air gradually tempers your transition from warm-weather tank tops to warm and wooly toques – well, let’s just say it’s still a good long ways from wearing off.

 

So the game plan was this:  instead of toning down our enthusiasm for the season, we were going to embrace it with wild abandon.  A veritable orgy of all things Autumn, wallowing in the novelty of trading garden clogs for fall boots (all the better for crunching leaves underfoot in!) and abandoning sun-soaked tomatoes and outdoor living for all things cinnamon-pumpkin-apple-cider-cake-and-carbs and indoor comforts.

 

Wanna see how far I got?

cakeyah

One. Naked. Cake.

 

In my defense, it’s at least a pumpkin spice cake. And it had potential.  Needed a few more repetitions to perfect before posting, but you could see the promise.  (Side note:  yes, you do indeed want to know me in the real world.  I will feed you cake prototypes until you resent my very existence, and you will love every minute of it.)

 

And then.  THE OVEN.

 

Two weeks ago, my oven went rogue.  I don’t mean it just stopped heating evenly, or the timer went weird, or a stove element burned out.  I mean that my stove and oven, that faithful center of my hearth and home, WENT ON THE ATTACK.  In a nutshell, one quiet Monday night mid-casserole, my oven decided to super-heat itself, cranking out all the power it possibly could, frying its own circuits and overriding its own ability to be turned on or off.  After some truly high-quality slapstick action, including standing on my own kitchen counter trying to decide if I should call 911 before or after I use a broomstick to unplug the burning beast, I developed enough sense to investigate my fuse box.

 

Eureka!  911 call averted.

 

The stove and oven, however, remain dead.  And, things being what they are, it’s gonna be a little while before they get replaced.

 

On the bright side, I’m off the hook for hosting Thanksgiving.  And hey, bonus, now I have a place to store all those doornails.

 

For right now, instead of cooking and crafting, I’m cobbling together a pretty effective model for survival, including borrowing indulgent family members’ kitchens, extensive use of slow cookers, and suddenly being super glad I opted to buy the waffle iron with the reversible griddle plates.  I don’t mind admitting that while I’m pretty good in a kitchen, I am a total incompetent with things like effective batch cooking and appropriate use of convenience foods.  Once I figure out how this all works, I hope to come out of it with a lot more spare time and maybe even a few new recipes in hand.

 

But for the moment, a whole lot of things are on hold.  Including leaf-crunching, apple-picking, cider-swilling, and finessing that stupid pumpkin cake up there.

 

Oh, and as for my partner in crime  blog?  Well.  She still has a working kitchen, and keeps taunting me with pins and pictures of things she’s working on or that we should totally consider making.  Don’t think I didn’t consider throwing myself and this blog at her mercy and begging her to just take it all over for a few weeks while I get my feet back under me.  But, at the risk of being vague and secretive-yet-smugly-in-the-loop, I happen to know that she’s currently working on one HELL of a DIY project, and it’s even more time consuming and profoundly-preoccupying than my own kitchen sitch.

 

So, best-laid plans have done what best-laid plans usually do, and  we’re both taking a minute to recalibrate, catch our respective breaths, and get those pesky ducks back in a row.  It won’t be long –  real-world considerations be damned, we won’t be able to resist fall for long.