2 cups flour
1 3/4 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup oil
1/4 cup water
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
Mix flour and 1 cup buttermilk. Add and mix oil, then eggs. In separate container, mix baking powder, baking soda, salt, and water. Add to batter mixture and add remaining buttermilk as needed for desired consistency.
Night before last (early 12 July), Pamela Fleetwood (Beaulieu) passed away. I met Pam my second quarter in college, in Bob Winter’s Introduction to Poetry, both the class and the Honor’s Seminar attached to it, where we not only studied poetry, but wrote some. The miles and years since then have stretched quite long, and there was no way then of knowing how significant and lasting that intersection of our lives would prove. At the end of the quarter, we put together a little chap book titled Cæsuras, and the following are Pam’s poems preserved there. I really haven’t much of anything of Pam that I can offer back to her family, but I have this. I hope it can be some comfort in this time of pain and sorrow.
Continue reading Remembering Pam
19 December 2009
Well, Merry Christmas! Time for the State of the Blain again.
Continue reading 2009 Christmas Letter
I’ve been perking up to some near-conclusions about avoiding divorce.
One is that there is really no ground to be gained by perpetuating the myth of divorces in the Church caused by silly people who decide that divorce is no big deal, or that they should quit when marriage is hard. Those people represent a very small portion of Mormons who experience divorce, and they’re dumb enough not to recognize themselves in that description. This straw-man needs to be left alone. Continue reading Some ideas on avoiding divorce.
These aren’t really rules in the sense that I enforce them, or that there’s some artificial penalty to breaking them. They are really more suggestions, or guidelines. Rather than fight over what they say, I’d prefer people think about the principles and reasons behind them.
The New Divorce Rule
No dating nor flirting of any kind for at least a year after a divorce is final. You need that year to heal and explore your own contribution to the divorce. You didn’t end up with a failed marriage because you were too perfect, and you’re not going to get better without time, effort and help. Take as much time as you need to get your head straight. Get used to standing on your own two feet, without depending on someone else. Wait until your fear of dating is greater than your fear of not dating, at the very least. Single life isn’t terrible, so find and enjoy the good parts of single life. This protects you from the rebound marriage and the consequent next divorce. Continue reading Blain’s Dating Rules
It’s been an interesting week. Sunday, I found out that Norm, a friend of mine, died the previous Thursday. This wasn’t a surprise — he was a WWII veteran whose health had been quite bad for several months — although his late diagnosis with bone cancer was. It explains why he was in so much pain when I visited him last in the hospital. I’m glad he’s done with that pain. I didn’t get to go to his service — it was yesterday, while I was at the last Secret Harbor Island Picnic.
Said picnic was good, but a bit disappointing. I was expecting to see more of the former staff and former residents than I did (one former staff that I knew, and no former residents). I did some networking with some of the state social workers there, and might be able to use them to try again to be hired to be one of them when I’m done working where I am. But it was sad to be on the Island and know that I won’t be back.
But the biggest loss of the week was my cat, Baby. She didn’t die this past week — she likely died nearly a month ago — but this week was when her remains were found. She wandered off about a month ago and found a secluded spot in my basement that she could lay down in and go to sleep, and then she didn’t wake up. And it was a secluded enough spot that it took this long to run into it (my basement is like that). Until then, I wasn’t certain where she had gone (it could have been outside) and whether she’d died or just found a new home. Now I know what it was.
Those who know will know that Baby and I did not have a warm nor fuzzy relationship. She was annoying and frequently grouchy. She loved attention, was afraid of people, and drooled when she purred. However, she lived in the same house with me for more of my life than anyone who was born after me. She was at least two years old when we adopted her, and that was about fifteen years ago, so she was at least 17, which is darn good in cat years. As with Norm, I’m glad that she went peacefully, and that she’s done with pain. And I will miss her, strangely enough.
I’m not afraid of death. I don’t see it as a bad thing. It’s a part of life. I like to think that Baby is stretched out on Norm’s lap, or, more likely, on my dad’s lap (like she used to) while he talks to Norm (they loved to have long conversations). But I am sadder than I thought I’d be.