2007-05-31 13:20 in /life/food/baking
I’ve been experimenting with variations on the basic no-knead bread recipe. Of course I’ve done whole wheat and rye breads, and I made a rosemary loaf once. This week I decided to really push it and try a variation based on the cranberry pecan rye bread in the Martha Steward Baking Handbook. I used 2 cups of all-purpose flour and 1 cup of rye, and a generous tablespoon of caraway seeds. Then, once the liquids were added, I folded in 3/4 cup of chopped dried cranberries and 1/2 cup of chopped pecans. The result was really quite good. I was worried the additions might weigh things down too much and keep it from rising properly, but while the bread is dense and hearty, it’s definitely not flat.
I really can’t recommend this no-knead bread enough. It’s literally no more than 5 minutes of work for a loaf of bread comparable to what you’d pay 3 or 4 dollars for. It takes a little practice to learn how to handle such wet and sticky dough, but it’s well worth it.
2007-05-31 09:20 in /life/sleep
Well, it was bound to happen eventually. Today I had my first oversleep. I’m not sure exactly what happened, but I seem to have had some sort of alarm malfunction.
I had my alarm clock set for 5:45, having gone to bed at 1:15. However, I was woken up about 4 by the neighbor’s cat coming in through our open window and making a big fuss. After dealing with that and closing all the windows, S. suggested that I should change my alarm and give myself some extra time, so I moved it to 6. (She thought I should have added an hour.) Next thing I know, it’s 7:30 when I woke up, and then I dozed for another half-hour, since I’d already blown my schedule this morning.
My initial assumption was that S. had just turned off my alarm, which she has a habit of doing when she thinks I need more sleep (and which annoys the heck out of me because it usually ruins my morning when I get shocked out of bed by the realization that I’ve overslept). However, the alarm was still set, and indeed set for 6AM. The only unusual thing was that it was set for music rather than buzzer. So, my best guess is that it went off at low volume and I just slept through it, which I’m somewhat trained to do, since S. often turns on the radio while she’s getting ready for bed.
At any rate, I’m trying not to stress too much. I’m going to stick with my planned naps for today, and tonight I’ll make sure the alarm is actually set on buzzer.
2007-05-31 00:30 in /life/sleep
After three days of sleeping only 4.5 hours at night, I’m definitely feeling somewhat out of it. My focus and attention span are pretty short, and motivation is lacking. One thing I know I’ve been slipping on is physical activity, but I just can’t seem to get myself out to move around. It’s not helping that it’s gotten crazy hot all the sudden, so going outside is just unpleasant most of the day.
I’m starting to wonder if my sleep changes are having effects on the rest of the family. The little one has been staying up later and later, to the point where I once again barely have any time between her falling asleep and the time when I need to get ready for bed. And, now that I’m getting up at 5:30, I’m actually waking up just as S. is finally going to bed. Yesterday was particularly insane. S. was still up when I got up, and then the little one woke up about 6:00, while I was still in the shower (after she went to bed about midnight). After that, S. stayed up until about 1:00 in the afternoon before crashing for a couple hours. I’m not sure what to make of all this. It’s a weird contrast, though, between my very disciplined sleep and the chaos of the rest of the family.
Also, yesterday and today my 5:00 naps were pretty poor. I’m not sure whether this is linked to noise around the house, the high temperatures, or it just being not the right time for a nap. Although, I’m definitely feeling sleepy a little before then, so I would expect to be dropping off easily and quickly.
As an aside, I’m trying not to do much proofreading or editing of these posts (although, flyspell catches some of my spelling errors). I figure a crude measure of my mental abilities may be captured in the quality of the writing. I’ve definitely noticed some typos after the fact, but that’s pretty normal. I’m not sure about the quality of the writing, maybe you can tell me.