Food · Handcrapted

Words to Banish from Food Writing

henceforth banished

There are an abundance of descriptive words out there, and most of them can be applied to food.  Festering gravy.  Dolloped cabbage.  Smothered raisins.  Pungent casserole.  You get the idea.  Variety is the spice of vocabulary.  There are some words, however, that must be banished because they are objectively terrible.  Hideous words that make my brain pucker up in a reflexive, sphinctral shudder.  Do not use these words.

Yummy:  The loathsome bookended “y” makes this word sound like wet mush in your mouth.  It also doesn’t mean anything.  If I describe a food as “yummy,” you know nothing about it except that I enjoy eating it and am describing it to you as though you are a toddler.

Mouthwatering:  You are describing a food as activating an overflow of bodily secretions.  You would’t describe a ham sandwich as “micturating,” would you?  Or swoon over a diaphoretic butternut squash soup? Continue reading “Words to Banish from Food Writing”

Handcrapted · Other People's Crap

18 Old-Fashioned Kitchen Products You Absolutely Will Regret Buying

I clicked on a promising BuzzFeed article entitled “18 Old-Fashioned Kitchen Products You Won’t Regret Buying” because I’m always looking for things to buy without succumbing to deep guilt and regret. Unfortunately, as usual BuzzFeed is a crock of shit. (A fancy vintage cerulean crock, but a crock of shit nonetheless.) Here are their stupid recommendations: Continue reading “18 Old-Fashioned Kitchen Products You Absolutely Will Regret Buying”

Handcrapted · Sew-sew · Stichin' Post · Style · Trashion · Tutorials

Incredibly Basic Skirt Tutorial

Leggings are a blessing. They can stand in for pants or tights, hide unshaven legs and dance party bruises, and generally function as work-appropriate pajamas. For those of us who buy our leggings from cheap fast fashion chains and wear them daily, the unfortunate truth is that one pair of leggings won’t last a year.

I have a plethora of ripped, hole-y, basic black leggings strewn around my closet. (I like to keep them around so that I can wear them in a leggings emergency.) Recently I decided that they needed to move on. Like a sartorial organ donor, they needed to be stripped for parts and put to new use.

First up: I used the waistband from a pair of old leggings to help create an incredibly basic skirt. I grabbed a yard of rayon fabric from my stash and threw together a tutorial. The skirt turned out incredibly comfortable – as comfortable as leggings – and with any luck it won’t fall apart in the wash. (Let’s be honest, the vast majority of my homemade clothes are held together by luck.)

Continue reading “Incredibly Basic Skirt Tutorial”

Food · Handcrapted · Stichin' Post

10 Ultimate Crappy Hosting Tips

This is an actual item crafted by your esteemed Handcrapted authors.

Being crappy is a way of life, and like all ways of life, it has seasons.  Sometimes, being crappy means holing up in your lair while the rains of winter dribble around.  Sometimes, being crappy means it’s summer and so you decide you’re having social engagements.  Webster’s dictionary probably defines hosting as “letting gross bugs nibble your skin flaps,” but we can define it as “having people over and wanting them to think you are 25% less crappy than you actually are.”  When that pressure strikes, I clean furiously, decide to make 5 new recipes, and end up yelling at the victims who live with me.  That makes everyone feel GREAT by the time guests arrive!

Really though, the heart of crappy hosting is understanding that being not-so-great at it should NEVER be an impediment to your socializing.  Your friends want to hang out with you.  They don’t really care about your house. At the same time, the level of squalor you can tolerate may necessitate finding a balance.  These tips are about where that point really resides. Continue reading “10 Ultimate Crappy Hosting Tips”

Handcrapted · Other People's Crap · Style

Home Office: Dreams and Harsh Realities

When I moved into the house that I currently share with my life partner and stepcat, I decided that the spare bedroom would make an excellent home office for all the creating and writing and “business” things that I would probably be doing, eventually, as if moving into this house would turn me into a real adult instead of the cobbled together with crayon and construction paper fake adult that I pretend to be. With an inflated sense of ability, I set out to create the home office of my dreams.

Continue reading “Home Office: Dreams and Harsh Realities”

Faves · Handcrapted · Stichin' Post

“The Office Fridge Smells Bad”: a new short story by Cormac McCarthy


The kid eyes the coffee urn. The crust around its edge is a vestige of more profligate times, before the glass carafe shattered. That morning, the hiss of continued drips on the hot plate had punctuated his musings on grammar, an exorcism of squeals amid the spurts of dark, arterial fluid.

His eyes dart left. Another misbegotten has entered.

Did you bring your lunch today?

The question carried a threat, borne on the winds underpinning the fattened rain clouds that drifted in yesterday, and stayed. They were there Monday, too. The coursing rains swelled the sewer pipes and threatened to overspill their bounds.

Naw. I’m going out. Continue reading ““The Office Fridge Smells Bad”: a new short story by Cormac McCarthy”

Food · Handcrapted · Recipes

World’s Okayest Banana Muffins

Everyone who knows the difference between a tsp and a tbsp has a special recipe that they know by heart and whip up regularly. I committed this recipe to memory so long ago that I don’t even know where it came from. (Most likely it was adapted from my mom Karin’s banana loaf recipe, but she probably wouldn’t want me sullying her good name with my mediocre muffins.)

The World’s Okayest Banana Muffins are my go-to lazy weekend stay-at-home sweet-tooth brunch treat. They’re quick, easy, hard to screw up, and go great with black coffee. Plus they’re the perfect vehicles for those bananas in your fridge going brown and splotchy. You might not win any awards or impress your older sister who taught you the difference between a tsp and a tbsp, but like a $9 bottle of red wine these banana muffins are just good enough to get the job done.

Continue reading “World’s Okayest Banana Muffins”

Crafts · Handcrapted · Other People's Crap · Sew-sew · Stichin' Post · Style · Trashion · Tutorials

Sleep Mask Non-Tutorial

Any good vampire knows the importance of blocking out as much sunlight as possible from dawn until dusk. Unfortunately, after years of use and abuse my sturdy sleep mask finally turned into dust. What’s an undead creature of the night to do?

Bust out the stash and craft a new sleep mask!

Continue reading “Sleep Mask Non-Tutorial”

Food · Handcrapted

Ultimate Freezer Pizza Hacks

You clicked on this because the word “hack” was in the title, thinking that I’d be giving you some clever tips and ingredient add-ons to freshen up the most estimable quiescently frozen confection: pizza.

Joke’s on you though, because the only “hack” here is the author.

This list is actually far more important than some poorly advised toppings.  It’s a guide to achieving transcendent happiness for about $4.99.  Regardless of your feelings about Malcolm Gladwell, I’ve definitely gotten my 10,000 freezer pizzas, which makes me uniquely qualified to dispense some practical tips.  In other words: trust me, I’m a professional. Continue reading “Ultimate Freezer Pizza Hacks”