Lisa Hendrix

Myth. Magic. And the power of love.

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How to Cook in a Thermos

Posted by Lisa Hendrix on November 1, 2012
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I decided to play with an old sailor’s trick and cook part of my dinner in a Thermos. The idea struck as I was putting water on for tea just after lunch,  and it struck me I could use the hot water for two purposes.

Since I was going to be eating alone this evening, I pulled out one of the 10 oz single serve Thermoses we had for the kids’ lunches and dumped in 1/2 cup of sprouted rice & quinoa pilaf (bought at Costco). Then when the water reached a full boil, I filled the Thermos and screwed on the lid. Then I made my tea and went off to do errands.

That was it.

By the time I was ready to eat dinner, the pilaf was cooked to perfection and was still plenty warm enough to melt butter. I had it with some leftover roast chicken and a few blueberries. (Wish I’d remembered to take a picture.)

Sailors cook all sorts of grains and beans in the large widemouth thermoses because fuel is precious at sea. Landlubbers use the trick to save money on their utility bill. Presoaked black beans take about 8 hours in a good (metal or glass, not plastic) Thermos. Rolled oats put in a Thermos with boiling water at bedtime gives you hot oatmeal at breakfast time. Dry noodles, a bouillon cube, some minced onion and boiling water gives you a basic noodle soup in about 20 minutes (with egg noodles, you can keep it hot for hours). Get creative and add dried veggies or fruits and seasonings to your basic ingredients to make a meal. (For instance, start some lentils with extra water, then after an hour or so, add rice, cumin, and onion for a hearty lentil and rice dish that will give you stick to your ribs, complete protein.)

One thing I forgot to do was preheat my Thermos with hot tap water. Doing that would have kept my pilaf even warmer.

Of course, you might not have warm tap water,  like many folks on the East Coast right now, and when you do manage to find  a way to boil water, you may have limited access. Use a bit of your precious hot water to warm your Thermos, then dump the water into a bowl to use to wash up and use your pre-warmed Thermos to make a hearty meal that will keep warm for hours. Even if all you do is heat some canned soup or hot water for later, you’ll be happy you did.  When you’re under stress, a warm meal goes a long way toward making you feel secure again.

After my simple success today, I’m going to buy a couple of larger wide-mouth Thermoses so I can cook a lot more things this way. As oil prices go up and we come to grips with what we’re doing to the planet, saving energy is going to be more important. And face it: this is an easy one. With delicious results.

 

Ben Taylor rocked the tent.

Posted by Lisa Hendrix on September 19, 2012
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Ben Taylor at the CasbahI had such a fabulous evening last night. Yesterday afternoon I saw a Tweet go by in my stream that said Ben Taylor (son of James Taylor and Carly Simon) was going to do a free concert at a venue near us. I couldn’t confirm it anywhere else, but we went anyway, and sure enough, they were setting up. Ben and his band had stopped off on their tour to play a segment on the local NPR station, and since they had the evening free, had asked on air if anyone could set up a “house party.”

Someone could, and voila. Instant concert. Someone found an opening act; the small, semi-outdoor tented venue produced some food & drink; and maybe 150 people turned up. The band played nearly 2 hours, just for fun, and it was so relaxed and wonderful. (The pic is of one of Ben’s solo numbers, taken with my poor excuse of a phone.)

The music was terrific, of course — with parentage like JT and Carly, how could the guy miss? — but the number I liked most was a poem by Ben’s “uncle” Tim Mayor, What Do You Make of the Stars?  My husband found a video of Ben reciting it at Bush Hall, London. Unfortunately, I can’t seem to make the new WordPress embed it properly, so you’ll have to CLICK HERE. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Hyphens and Dashes Demystified

Posted by Lisa Hendrix on May 22, 2012
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Recently, there was a discussion on a loop I’m on regarding the various hyphens and dashes and how to create them typographically. There’s a lot of confusion, so I decided to post what I’ve learned over 20 or so years as a writer. Here they are, along with how to produce them—at least on a Mac.

hyphen:  – the shortest; used to break words. (e.g., thirty-five) Simply hit the “hyphen/underline” key. A hyphen is NOT a dash, (nor, for that matter, is it a minus sign, which is actually a different character altogether for use in mathematical formulas.)

en-dash: – one “en” long, which is a typographical unit almost the width of the letter n. En dashes are used when you show a range of values (e.g., 25–30 miles, 16–18 years old) and to indicate an interruption in a word/sentence (e.g., “Run through the gar–”)  Created with Option+ – (Option plus hyphen) (I think that’s Ctrl + Num – on a Windows machine, that is CTRL plus the minus sign on the number pad)

em-dash:  — two ens long, or about the width of a capital M. In typewriter and early computer days, they were entered as a double hyphen –, but there’s really no reason to do them that way any more.  Em dashes are used to set off parenthetical phrases. (e.g., She ran—or at least she hoped she was running—through the garden.) Also used kind of like a colon, to separate the last phrase of a sentence that’s related but not actually a part (All three of my horses lost—Tiger, King, and Flicka). Created with Option+Shift+ – . I’m not at all sure how to produce it on Windows machines, but if you’re working in Word, you can set it up to auto-correct the double hyphen ( — ) to an em dash.

There are other symbols that you can create typographically, as well. Several years back I bookmarked an article with the 10 most common typographical errors that has helped me a lot with things like true degree marks, correcting smart quotes when they’re backwards in years (i.e. appearing as ‘08 when they should be ’08), proper ellipses, and so on, and without having to look up Unicodes or cutting & pasting. Find it at

Lisa

Lisa

MySpace. Facebook. What’s next?

Posted by Lisa Hendrix on May 16, 2012
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I was reading a Family Circle article about kids and social networking, and it was all “MySpace is the biggest thing around, but you might want to be aware of these up and comers” — one of which was Facebook. I looked at the cover

It was from July 2007 — just five years ago.

Now FB is going public, and all that personal info we’ve given them will be in the hands of a board of directors beholden to stockholders. I can’t help but wonder where FB will be in 5 years. Where our information will be. And where everyone will go after Facebook palls.

What’s the next big social network?

EVERY PART OF YOU BELONGS TO YOU

Posted by Lisa Hendrix on March 8, 2012
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I wish I’d written this. Read it. Spread it. Believe it.

http://amandaching.wordpress.com/2012/02/20/67/

 

Lisa

Romance Trading Cards Available NOW!

Posted by Lisa Hendrix on May 18, 2011
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Finally!

I know you’ve all been waiting patiently for me to get my act together and make these available to the general public, so here you go.

To get a signed set of the first three RTCs for the Immortal Brotherhood series, just send a Self-Addressed Stamped Envelope to

Lisa Hendrix
PO Box 8092
Medford, OR 97501.

I also have bookplates that I can sign, which you can then stick in your book(s) in order to have an autographed copy, plus Immortal Champion bookmarks, so PLEASE SPECIFY EXACTLY WHAT YOU WANT.

(Information on Print-It-Yourself bookmarks  can be found on the Extras Page)

The Mailroom is standing by…

A Giveaway!

Posted by Lisa Hendrix on March 24, 2011
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Immortal Champion cover

So, today on Twitter, I promised that if Courtney Milan’s TRIAL BY DESIRE advanced in the DABWAHA bracket, I’d give away a copy of IMMORTAL CHAMPION. Since that happened, a giveaway is in order. All you have to do is leave a comment below or at my Facebook FAN PAGE. Giveaway open until midnight tonight, PST.

Comment away!

~Lisa

 

 

 

 

Top 10 Worst Curses

Posted by Lisa Hendrix on January 26, 2011
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I’m being a bum about posting here because I’m working like a fiend on Torvald’s story. But I am managing to write for other blogs.

Today I’m over at the RT Bookreviews Daily blog, where they asked me to talk about the 10 Worst Curses to Endure. Considering the misery I, er, Cwen puts my guys through, I had to think long and hard to come up with 10 even worse. Find out what I came up with and let me know which one you think would be worst.

10 Worst Curses to Endure at RT Daily Blog

Lisa

Film at 11…

Posted by Lisa Hendrix on January 20, 2011
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Okay, so my effort to blog the tour failed miserably. Something about never getting to a hotel before 11pm, putting 3030 miles on the car, and visiting 41 booksellers in 9 days. Yeah.

But fortunately, my tour buddy, the ever energetic writer Delilah Marvelle, kept a video diary of the whole thing, and she’s edited it into a terrific 7 minute video full of booksellers, readers, bloggers, and other authors. Great fun. Enjoy!

A bit late, but heartfelt…

Posted by Lisa Hendrix on December 26, 2010
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ornamentsMerry Christmas!ornaments

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