Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Gluten free pie

"Besides apply for jobs, what is it that Carolyn gets up to in Philadelphia?", you may be wondering.  It's a little too much Netflix, not enough scrapbooking (need my photo order to arrive!), and a pretty good amount of cooking.

One little hitch with moving in with my boyfriend is that he is gluten intolerant.  This is bad because it makes figuring out dinners a little bit harder (bread is one of my favorite food groups next to bacon). It's good though because in Oregon I was kind of just making the same recipes over and over, so now I'm trying out new ones, and because it makes it impossible for him to steal my gluten-filled snacks.

So far, gluten free cooking has basically just been avoiding recipes that involve flour.  It's very easy to substitute gluten free noodles in a lasagna recipe and to avoid having bread as a side dish.  Baking though... that's a whole other story. I took the plunge into my first gluten free baking experience on Monday, and I'm happy to say it turned out really well!

I had to put those apples we picked to good use, didn't I?

One thing that made making the gluten free pie crust a little easier was that I've actually never made a pie crust from scratch, so it was all new to me, not just the gluten free part.  I was nervous, worried that I would roll it too thin or thick, or not be able to transfer it to the pie pan, but it all worked out pretty well! Most importantly, it tasted delicious :)

If anyone is interested, the recipe I used for the crust can be found here, and the pie filling is from here (with my gluten free flour substituted in, I think I used Betty Crocker all-purpose gluten free flour).

We ate it with a little ice cream on top, and it was a hit! Even with Neville, who keeps trying to break into our cabinet to try a bite.  He was very curious during the process (I think he wanted those cinnamon covered apples) but then napped while it was in the oven.  Evidence:

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Getting back into it

I'm trying to make sure my unemployed self isn't just "eating bon-bons" all day, so I've been giving myself some activities to do besides working on settling the apartment and searching for jobs.  Yesterday, I ran for the first time in basically a billion years. Okay, maybe it was just a few months, but it definitely felt like that long. I'm very sore now.

It was surprisingly warm both yesterday and today so that made dragging myself out the door easier.  It's also nice that from my doorstep, I have a ton of different options of where I can run.  It can be in my neighborhood, I could aim myself downtown (although I don't run that far so I wouldn't get too deep into it), or down the Schuylkill River and historic Boat House Row.  The last one is a very scenic run and will probably become my usual route ... if I'm able to get myself to keep running, that is.  Winter is coming, and I tend to hibernate.

Something else I've been engaging in once again: scrapbooking! I put of that and crafts of any kind while I prepared for my move because I didn't want to have any more supplies or items to haul across the country. Now it's time to start it all up again.  I have some things to repaint to fit the decor here, and I'm slowly accumulating more photos to scrapbook.

For those of you who don't know, my scrapbook was centered on the visits Brian and I were taking to Oregon and Pennsylvania.  Now that we live together, I've decided to do things on a month-by-month basis.  That way, I can just put in various snaps that happen throughout the months into cohesive pages instead of being super specific about a trip.  I'm very excited to be able to scrapbook more often than every few months! My brand new Ikea desk is already on the way to being organized with a scrapbooking focus.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Apple Picking

Fall is definitely one of the best seasons because of all the activities. Sure there are winter activities but they are generally freezing, I don't garden for the spring, summer has some fun things but it generally includes worrying that you might have a wardrobe malfunction in your bathing suit.

I also just might like fall because I am a white girl, and if the Internet is right, liking fall is just in our DNA. But I  have never had a pumpkin spice latte so maybe that makes me special?

Anyway, this weekend I did the best fall activity of all, which you probably guessed from the title of this post: apple picking.

It was a nice excuse to take a break from unpacking my boxes and settling our apartment.

Brian and I went to Linvilla Orchards outside of Philadelphia. We got a bunch of apples, and I plan on making some into an apple pie later this week.  I also got to eat my favorite fall foods at Linvilla: apple cider donuts and hot apple cider! Yum.

  There was also an area to select pumpkins. We picked some good ones to display next to our front door! Luckily we live kind of around the corner and down a little driveway from the main road, so I hope we don't get any pumpkin smashers. I don't think I'm going to carve the pumpkins, but I might open them up in a bit to make some roasted pumpkin seeds.

I forgot how much I love fall in a city.   There are always leaves crunching on the sidewalks and fall sun makes all the brick row homes look extra pretty.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015


Part of my recent job search has involved updating my website. Since I'm focusing my search more on public relations jobs, I tailored my website a little more towards that, and less towards the news business.

I used to have my producing and news editing reels right on the homepage, but I moved those in favor of a bio.  I also made a new social media section.  It shows my professional use of social media (because who really wants to see how many cat videos on share on my personal Facebook?).

It was definitely not fun scrolling through endless pages of KEZI's Facebook and Twitter to find examples of things I posted.  Believe me, Facebook is lying when it says you can selected "all stories" instead of just "highlights" for Facebook pages.   Many of my posts didn't show up as I scrolled and scrolled through the page, but thankfully I remembered some of my most liked and shared posts (who doesn't like a good missing wallaby in Oregon story?) and was able to screenshot them for the page.

So take a look at my website and let me know what you think! Or, let me know if you want to hire me for anything plllleeeeaase.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015


We're here! I arrived in Philadelphia about nine hours later than I was expecting thanks to a maintenance issue on my first flight out of Eugene.  I was supposed to leave at 5:40 a.m., but didn't actually depart until after 9 a.m., missing my original flight out of Denver.  Not a fun time for me, but it was of course even worse for little Neville, who didn't really understand what was going on, or why he was stuck in a little carrier for 15 hours.  He was a trooper though: didn't meow, didn't go to the bathroom all over the place, didn't bother anyone.

It was nice to have a long weekend right after my arrival (although when you don't have a job, every day is basically a long, boring weekend).  We were able to run errands and grocery shop Saturday, spent all day Sunday in New Jersey where Brian's nephew was baptized and a party followed.  Yesterday consisted of more errands (finally got my apartment key!), a sandwich run at the tastiest place ever, and helping Brian grade quizzes.

My car is supposed to come this evening, which is exciting. One step closer to being fully moved in, I'll just need my packing unit and all my stuff will finally be here.

Now I just need a job... anyone want to hire me?

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

UCC Shooting: A Reflection

My last day of work at KEZI was nearly a week ago, last Friday. On Sunday, the morning show crew and a few other evening folk gathered for a fun breakfast in downtown Eugene to say goodbye to me, and the morning show editor Michelle.

But the days leading up to that were far from fun for the newsroom.  I ended work on Thursday anticipating a fun, easy day of work on Friday.  Our morning show reporter was going to have his first package on the show, a fun story about a haunted maze in the area.  My replacement was doing a great job producing, and I expected to have little to do on Friday.

Later Thursday morning, I returned home from the laundromat and got on to social media while snacking as usual.  And there it was on Facebook: "Report of a gunman at Umpqua Community College". UCC is about an hour south of me, in our viewing area.  I quickly move to Twitter, to see our sister station in Portland posting that at least 10 dead. And my vision of an easy work day the following day is gone.

Friday was for me the hardest work day yet.  I think the majority of journalists never have their major local story also be the biggest national story of the day. The majority of journalists never have to cover a mass shooting.  We were tasked with compiling all the information: the story, the reaction, the heartbreak, the president speaking out.  And while I look back on my hard Friday, of throwing out our usual morning show template and trying to squeeze in the whole story, a live report, and a live interview, I can't even imagine what it was like in the newsroom on Thursday. It was basically wall to wall coverage.  From what I've seen, our reporters did amazing work, both Thursday and the days that followed.  My friend Sarah did an amazing live interview with the Douglas County Sheriff at 5:45 a.m. Friday morning, running on just a few hours of sleep. Our typical morning show reporter, Oscar, did a fabulous job covering a live press conference at the top of the 6 a.m. show, also on hardly any sleep, and just a few weeks into his first reporting job.

I thought my last day at my first job would be one I'd never forget simply because it was my last day, but now I'll always have an even deeper memory of it.  Overall, I had a great learning experience at KEZI, and nothing more so than that final day.  It's been strange to see the rest of the coverage of the UCC shooting unfold without being part of it, but I am proud of the work I did to cover the story, and the work KEZI and the rest of these small market Oregon stations will continue to do.