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Whew! [Aug. 2nd, 2009|09:32 pm]
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The copy edits went out Friday, and then large boluses of Stuff landed on me.   Because I thought I'd get the copy edits out Thursday at the latest (having been through them twice by then) with only a final cursory check Wednesday evening, I had bought the makings for a large pot of chicken stock and chicken earlier on Wednesday.   But came home with a weather-related migraine, so I got nothing done on the copy edits that evening.  Thursday morning, I thought "Oh, sure, I can put the chickens in the pot and then work on the copy edits..." whereupon I found rafts of errors (mostly mine in marking) that had to be repaired.  Meanwhile, the chickens, carrots, celery, parsley, garlic, onions, were all moving toward the point at which I was supposed to Do Something with them.  

Friday was the absolute deadline for getting the copy edits off by overnight, because they were due in on Monday.  I had discovered that most of my errors came from working on them past midnight, when apparently my eyes cannot distinguish one red mark from another...but midnight came and went on Thursday. Friday I was up early, with both the huge pot on the stove and the copy edits to work on.  Boning out boiled chickens is not compatible with keeping a manuscript clean....It was obvious as early as Thursday evening that this had been the wrong time to do up a bunch of chicken stock and boiled chicken.  But...with a 20 quart pot on the stove, there's nothing you can do.  When it's ready, it's ready.  And the big pot won't fit in the refrigerator..

So I enlisted help with the boning out, and the chicken meat went into the refrigerator (thank you, Richard!)   I kept working on the manuscript (and its box, which was suffering from one too many trips in a truck.)   Finally got the whole thing packaged again, and hauled it the 20-something miles to the nearest FedEx pickup site open that late. Then came home and finished getting the rest of vegetables and so on out of the stock.  That's a multi-stage process when dealing with pots of that size.   

Saturday was the start of the big choir-returns-to-work weekend that involved cooking for the choir party (with some attendant leftover shopping for same that I knew I'd have to do), then driving to the party, which included a rehearsal...coming home to realize that I had to do another load of laundry and get it dry by leaving-for-church time...which was 7 sharp or before because the women were to sing both services and our rehearsal started at 8:10 am.  (Did I mention that we were singing new music, that we had not seen until the rehearsal at the party?)  Sunday included not only singing two services (very music-full services) but also a recording session....which our director optimistically assured us would take "only twenty minutes..."   Ha!   Someone pointed out afterwards that we'd been singing for a solid 5 1/2 hours.  I'd have said five.  But still.  Came home and flopped. I'm now barely awake, having had insufficient sleep for the entire past week.   I had hoped to get the chicken stock that's now in the refrigerator into its freezer containers this afternoon, but I'm not able.  Tomorrow.


[User Picture]From: ajl_r
2009-08-03 08:30 am (UTC)
My goodness, that's some activity level! I hope you're able, soon, to catch up on your sleep.

Messy business (at least it is for me... :) ) decanting stock into containers.
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2009-08-03 12:25 pm (UTC)
I think daily naps are in my future for a few days.

Decanting stock...yeah, it's usually messy. First I get it into smaller containers from the big one, clean up the stove, and cool the smaller containers so they can go in the refrigerator. That's done. The smaller of the two has already been decanted into the smaller quart freezer containers; the larger one (only 8 quart and probably only 6 quarts of stock in it) is in the refrigerator now. Unfortunately, the sherbet containers I've used for years--a perfect size and shape, and they last at least 4-5 rounds through the freezer--are no longer used by the people who make the sherbet. Oh, well. Nothing good lasts forever.
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[User Picture]From: gauroth
2009-08-03 09:57 am (UTC)
I am awed by all that activity! Singing is physically tiring (I tell non-singing friends: they smile in polite disbelief) and 5 1/2 hours is a marathon!

Wishing you lots of good sleep and lots of delicious chicken meals!
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2009-08-03 12:28 pm (UTC)
I imagine non-singers think of it as being like the way they sing, with no effort applied. Heh. They should try it sometime.

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[User Picture]From: sophielandon
2009-08-03 02:23 pm (UTC)
It works both ways. Singing is indeed aerobic, but I used to come home from evening rehearsals and not be able to get to sleep for hours. Which created its own problems.
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2009-08-03 02:35 pm (UTC)
Yes, I've had that happen, too. Especially intense rehearsals of music I really like. OTOH I have an hour's drive home from rehearsals and often stop for gas and groceries at one of the larger stores on the way home, so I'm often (not always) "back down" from the music.

I do find it difficult to go to sleep right after an evening performance--I'm tired, but all that alertness and the rush that comes from finishing something keep my eyes popping open.
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From: 6_penny
2009-08-03 03:12 pm (UTC)
I'm exhausted just reading about it. Hope that you can turn the AC up and have a good restorative hibernation!
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2009-08-03 03:33 pm (UTC)
I've been out for a nice walk before it got too hot--there's still a tiny puddle from last week's rain behind the #3 gabion. Now I'm inside trying to work on things that didn't get done last week. I will take a nap this afternoon, though.
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[User Picture]From: kitkabbit
2009-08-06 12:42 am (UTC)
re: chicken stock---

How long do you think that chicken parts can last in the freezer until you make stock? I have about 7 freezer bags full of chicken bones/bits and I just can't face making hot stock in the summer.... some of them look rather ice-fuzzed.
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2009-08-06 02:13 am (UTC)
When did you put them in? Time-in-freezer has an effect, but a lot depends on how much air was in the package when frozen. My feeling is, it can't hurt to try...freezer burn is just dehydration, really...you may lose some flavor and you'll certainly lose texture in the meat, but it's better to make stock out of 'em than to throw them away.

Frost-fuzz only means there was moisture in the package that's now frozen--it might be moist air, or it might be moisture from the meat. I've cooked home-frozen lamb that was frost-covered, but the meat itself wasn't freezer-burned. But you're talking bones and bits, so it probably doesn't matter.

Or you can make stock in smaller amounts, that won't heat the kitchen as much. (Depends--in some places and conditions, you don't want to heat the kitchen at all.)
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