blk: (sudopie)
I am so overdue on posting things. Well, starting in order...

Carnival happened (a week+ ago now), and it was overall a really excellent weekend.

Friday after my morning meeting I went to the jboys' school and signed them out so they could come watch mobot. Well, mobot was the excuse; I think they were mostly just happy to get out of school. I did some wandering with a few folks then went back and pretended to work for a few more hours. After work I decided to join the 412Flock bike ride, then home to greet scu, our houseguest for the weekend, and one of his contra friends, and we hung out chatting until late.

Saturday I made the boys help me do a bunch of housecleaning while Xuth did a bunch of yardwork, then we headed to CMU to see booths on midway. I got stuck at the Math Club booth where they had various logic puzzles on their walls and solved their "easy" sudoku in about 15 minutes (but I needed pencilmarks, so I told them it was not "easy") and looked at their "hard" sudoku before giving up and heading over to the SCS alumni snackfest (I did get a picture of it, and determined later that it actually was not solveable. Hmph.). A few of us wandered around the new Scott Hall with mjs before heading to the cslounge BBQ in Squirrel Hill, where food was et and Tichu was played. After leaving there we went home and I helped Jim make pizza, some people came over for board games, and we hung out chatting until late.


raspberry pi

Sunday everybody in the house worked on a bunch of party prep and cleaning and pie making and setup all the way up until 2pm when people arrived and eventually I sat down. Party was most excellent. There was food (most of which was eaten), drinks, trampoline, bouncy stilts, a hoverboard, DDR, a small dog, 5 bikes, face painting, a hammock, pizzas, and a few games. The weather was superb and the backyard grass and porch was covered with people enjoying it. I counted up a total of 32 pies and 80 people (~20 of them under age 18), which is not quite a record but pretty close. There were almost no leftovers.

The most fun pie this year was the "raspberry pi" (pictured) and I think the most delicious pie was a brown sugar pie, which I'm pretty sure I need to acquire the recipe to (although almost everything I tasted was yummy). A smaller group stayed late and played Ticket to Ride Pennsylvania and kindly let me stomp all over them.

Cleanup was mostly not a huge pain, thanks to really awesome guests who are not only pretty good about not making a huge mess in general but are also super awesome and many of them helped with cleanup during the party. A few dishwasher loads took care of the majority of it, and several days of slowly working on larger stuff here and there took care of the rest of it. As of yesterday I am finally willing to declare the house back to normal, with the rug vacuumed, the furniture all moved back, and last of the borrowed things cleaned and bagged and ready to be returned.

A++ would pie again. Next year.
blk: (sudopie)
I've got 7 more hours to write my Carnival weekend review post before I'm no longer in the correct month!

Carnival was pretty low-key this year all around. Less turnout for a lot of stuff, but plenty enough that I still had a great time.

Friday I decided to take a day off work, because I could, and because previous years I've usually wandered around campus finding visiting people for half the day anyways. At noon I picked up a boy from school early and we hit Mobot, which turned out to be very sparse due to rain and also only 4 mobot entries total. The boy stayed for a round, then went home, while I mostly wandered around looking for things to do. I grabbed some food and wandered some booths at Midway, eventually meeting up with various friends and the other kid, then heading home.


click for album

Saturday was beautiful weather, so I went back to midway to take some pictures of the bookshelves in KGB's booth (among other things), then to the usual lunch at the SCS alumni reception, then to the CSLBBQ, which was also subdued, then home for some games.

Sunday was also beautiful weather, which makes for a great pie party. I finished up my pie making just after people started arriving. This party was smaller than last year, with 60 people (10 under age 18), down from 80 last year, and 27 pies. The back porch and yard and trampoline got plenty of use, along with the boffer swords. I was still in boot, but was doing just fine walking around.


click for album

Pies as recorded included ham and spinach quiche and quichelets by me, chive gorgonzola quiche by pliny, savory greens quiche by cgs and jess, spinach quiche by joel, vegan chicken curry pot pie by scu, tiramisu twinkies and a tasty attempt at berry tau by bc3p, pear pecan by mj2q, pecan by shafeeq, chocolate pecan pielets by pliny, chocolate pecan by bblum, chocolate chipotle by adam & rehana, peach habanero by otherjim, GF black raspberry by nolans, blueberry by lisa, vinegar pie and cheesecake by ivan & lyndsey, apple pie by david, butternut squash by benoit & guests, a brownie pie with a cookie dough "pi" on top by anonymous, and a store-bought oreo cake by serra. Apparently the unspoken pie theme this year was pecan.

Pies were all completely consumed! The first year of no leftovers. Around 8p the usual exodus of people happened, but bigger than usual, leaving only 5 people left. So we cooked at mostly ate 4 more pies (pizzas), and played a riveting game of Small World until late.
blk: (pie)
So Carnival happened.

Overall a pretty relaxing and good weekend locally. There was some overshadowing of the stuff in Boston, which had me checking updates regularly while I was at my computer, but once away I was able to just focus on people and good stuff.

Thursday was the last of the gorgeous weather of the week. Friday started off nice but then morphed into chilly and wet. I arrived on campus Friday morning from Oakland, heading up Schenley behind the library, right behind a car speeding along... right smack into the barrier in the middle of the bridge closing the streets to traffic. He slammed his brakes at the last second as he apparently woke from his reverie, and the bridge guard and I could only shake our heads and laugh. I watched a round of Buggy, which was trying to get in as many rolls as possible before rain, before heading into work, where our new director had brought us donuts. Later on I took a break from work to go wander around Mobot, where I found almost nobody I recognized. Weird. I wandered off to lunch with [livejournal.com profile] chamois and baby, then ran into some younger ex-KGBers on the way back to office.

Work closed down around mid-afternoon, just in time for me to head over to the track for the SCS Random Distance Run, where it was annoyingly chilly and rainy, but I once again met my goal of not placing last! I managed just over 12 minutes for 6 laps (1.5 miles), which I'm pretty sure is my fastest time for a full mile ever, even though my hands were numb from the chilly damp, which sucked. We headed over to the TG for a bit, which might have been a mistake, as biking home after running hard and drinking a beer was quite difficult, but I still made it. Later in the evening I finally found our houseguests for the weekend and we played some games and went out to dinner and had a very silly time.

Saturday we hit campus to wander around a midway for a short bit, then the SCS reception for lunch, then KGB just long enough to note that it still existed, then the CSLBBQ for food and people and lots of Tichu, then home to collapse.

pie )

Great weekend. Let's do it again next year!
blk: (sudopie)
CMU Spring Carnival: Apr 19-20, 2012
... "God always has another custard pie up his sleeve." — Lynn Redgrave, Georgy Girl



It's almost time for the 12th annual after-Carnival Pie Party!

Come socialize, play games, try out bouncy stilts, run around in nice spring weather (hopefully), and eat pie!

Bringing pie is not a requirement, but if you do bring one, it must be homemade. Pies can be sweet, savory, satirical, silly, or any combination thereof. Other contributions of food, drinks, guests, or games are also welcome.

Supervised children of all ages are welcome. There will be one (1) friendly cat and up to three (3) resident t(w)een boys. In the event of good weather, there is a hammock and a grassy yard available for playing in.

Party attendees are welcome to invite and give out directions to anybody they know (CMU alums particularly encouraged). Directions available upon request.

RSVPs are nice (especially if you're bringing pie or someone I don't know) but not a requirement. See the FB event page for people planning.
blk: (cmu)
... even when the yard is chilly and slightly damp.

This year's Carnival seemed a bit quieter than usual, although I'm not sure if that was more because this was the first year in a while that I didn't have the [livejournal.com profile] jboys for it, or that there were simply fewer people (from my alum groups) around for it.

The more subdued nature didn't actually make it less horrendously busy to plan for, though, particularly since our bedroom remodeling project was dragging its little legs out and making the final crunch cleaning time even more crunchy. In the last few days before Carnival-start, we moved out of our temporary bedroom in the basement, cleaned the living daylights out of the basement in prep for cat-allergic houseguests to stay there without dying, then did additional cleaning to the entire first floor in prep for the party.

and they're like, it's better than yours )
blk: (sudopie)
CMU Spring Carnival: Apr 20-21, 2012
... "When someone asks if you'd like cake or pie, why not say you want cake and pie?" — Lisa Loeb



It's almost time for the 11th annual after-Carnival Pie Party! Come socialize, play games, play on bouncy stilts, run around in nice spring weather (hopefully), and/or eat pie!

Bringing pie is not a requirement, but if you do bring one, it must be homemade. Pies can be sweet, savory, satirical, silly, or any combination thereof. Other contributions of food, drinks, guests, bouncy stilts, or games are also welcome.

Well-behaved children of all ages are welcome. There will be one (1) friendly cat and up to three resident boys. In the event of good weather, there is a hammock and a grassy yard available for playing in.

Party attendees are welcome to give out this invite and my address to people they know. Directions available upon request.

RSVPs are nice (especially if you're bringing pie or someone I don't know) but not a requirement. See the FB event page for people planning.

Due to the unavailability of some usual attendees this year, we are currently houseguestless for that weekend. If any Carnival visitors still need crash space, feel free to contact me.
blk: (cmu)
So Carnival weekend happened.

It was a busy time, starting from Thursday early when houseguests started arriving. My house no longer has infinite houseguest space, but fortunately, there are others who can fill in for that. Thursday evening, there was socializing with newly in-town folks until we all fell over.

Carnival... )

... and Pie! )

People hung out and played games until reasonably late. Our last houseguests left early Monday, and magically, the house was quiet and clean and peaceful, which [livejournal.com profile] xuth and I are enjoying immensely. Overall, fantastic weekend. I had a great time, I can't wait to see y'all again, and I don't want to do it until next year. :)
blk: (sudopie)
CMU Spring Carnival: Apr 16-17, 2011
... "We must have a pie. Stress cannot exist in the presence of a pie." -- David Mamet



It's almost time for the 10th annual after-Carnival Pie Party! Usual info after the cut )
blk: (winter)
When I started my most recent job at CMU this past fall, I realized that, with the [livejournal.com profile] jboys securely taking the school bus to and from school, I had no more justification for driving the short stretch in to work everyday. Particularly since employment there comes with a free bus pass, and there are multiple routes which stop a half mile from either end.

Read more... )

Probably in the spring I'll start looking at biking (or walking) in more regularly, but for now, it's really nice to have an easy, unstressful commute. Just took some learning.
blk: (stilts)
I'm so behind on this update, but here it is, before I forget it all.

Carnival happened this year, and was made even more awesome than usual by the addition of [livejournal.com profile] xuth and bouncy stilts.

We had houseguests [livejournal.com profile] cheerfulchaotic and pliny in on Thursday, and the usual (small this year) madmex outing. On Friday, xuth and I dressed up in our usual stilting-ware (see icon) and roamed around CMU on them. We hit a bit of midway (before it opened), buggy and mobot, and hung out in front of Wean giving some stilt rides. Attracted quite a bit of attention and pictures, although I haven't seen any yet (anybody?), except for a cute blurb about us in The Tartan. The afternoon was a short round of gaming before heading home to meet the kids. The monsoon greeted us just before home, leaving me nearly soaking in about 5 seconds, so we stayed in for a while. Got rid of the older Boy in the evening, and a [livejournal.com profile] bhudson showed up late.

A couple of people on pogo-stilts walked by nonchalantly )
blk: (sudopie)
CMU Spring Carnival: Apr 16-17, 2010
... "In order to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -- Carl Sagan



whoever dies with the most pies wins )
blk: (sudopie)
This might possibly have been my best Carnival evar. I had a rockin' weekend.

I had houseguests: [livejournal.com profile] soong, [livejournal.com profile] cheerfulchaotic, [livejournal.com profile] ts4z, [livejournal.com profile] damion, and [livejournal.com profile] jccw (who is still here). Yay for really awesome guests who not only make it fun to stay up way too late chatting and playing games, but are also helpful and cook for me and help clean my house. You all are welcome back anytime.

By Thursday midday, I was wiggling in my seat at work, excited for the weekend. A bunch of us crashed Mad Mex that evening for a totally enjoyable dinner out, which was made bonus good by getting 20 people (plus a few joiners) seated on time in a smoke-free restaurant, and overpaying the bill. I should probably try to remember for the future that the "mild" wings there are really too hot for me, and I should eat something else.

Friday and Saturday I did campus stuff, midway stuff, and party stuff, mostly with kids. Having the kids around for most of Carnival is tiring, because, well, have to watch out for three people all the time, and plan around their schedules, but it also helped enforce a mandatory "come home early" practice for me both days, which meant that for a couple hours before dinner, we came home and vegged out in the house for a while before going out or doing other social stuff. This turned out to be a huge sanity saver for me, and helped in making the whole weekend good.

There were two major party events of my weekend, KGB and Pie:

KGB )

Pie )
blk: (computer)
Those silly geeks. What will they think of next? Happy anniversary, :-) ! (Arrrrrrrr!)

blk: (braids)
Another Carnival, come and gone.

I decided to kick off the week by braiding my hair. It's been almost three years since I did it last, and I really missed it. Alas, the thinness of my hair makes it really hard to do as many braids as I used to, as the braids dwindle down to near nothing at the bottom, no matter how thick they start up top. So I added in dmc floss to thicken up some of them a bit, and ended up liking it so much I did it to them all. I really like the effect, and will definitely do something similar again.

Anyways. Carnival. )
blk: (volleyball)
ok, i like a lot of them, but i'll take this one, a) because it tells me something about your previous volleyball coaches, and a) because i doubt anyone else will. Fire away...

Oh man, now I really want to know what it tells you about my previous coaches. The original pic was taken about a year and a half ago, during one of my rare visits to the nearby sand courts for some pickup play. This was the only shot of me I could see where I wasn't making a really silly face. Why I make a face when I pass, I have no idea.


My history of volleyball started back in fall of 1995, when I came to CMU for a sleeping bag weekend. My host was none other than the infamous [livejournal.com profile] dr4b, who showed me around to various things and introduced me to a plethora of weird people (some of whom I even remembered later on, like [livejournal.com profile] inmostlight) and fun things (like geeky Scattergories). Among the things she told me I should check out later was CS volleyball, which set up at 4:30pm Fridays on the Mall. Next fall, Orientation week, I happened to remember, and went down to join them. It became a key part of my life starting that day (in addition to KGB, which I also blame Dee for).

I pretty much sucked at volleyball then, but there were a lot of really good players at that time, and I did my best to seek out and take advice, and gradually I improved. Over the next several years, I took a semester class to officially learn volleyball basics, spent a few months practicing with the Club team (er, that page looks a little out of date), competed in Intramural teams (and won several times), and had a ton of fun. Although I've had a small amount of what could be called formal training/coaching, the majority of what I know I learned off of friends like [livejournal.com profile] es5f and [livejournal.com profile] dgr, who rock.

In 2001, Mark Stehlik announced to a few of us long-time players that he was planning to start a girls' volleyball team at Sacred Heart Elementary School, where his daughter went to school, and he asked if we would be interested in helping out. more on coaching )

Since graduating, many volleyball friends leaving CMU, and doing more coaching in the past few years, I've actually done incredibly little playing, in part due to schedules of local leagues not matching up with my schedule, and in part not having a strong draw to any pickup place (I've picked up a bit of elitism; I prefer to play with people who at least can pass and set properly, know basic defense/offense setups, and will play hard enough for me to have to pay attention). I'm hoping to get out to the sand courts (from my icon) more often this summer (even though sand doubles might be my least favorite type of play), since that's a place I can also bring kids to and not worry about them much, if just to try to un-rust some of my basic skills, and to get back in better shape.

Anybody up for a game?
blk: (spring)
CMU Spring Carnival: Apr 20-21, 2007
... "When you die, if you get a choice between going to regular heaven or pie heaven, choose pie heaven. It might be a trick, but if not…mmmmm, boy!" -- Jack Handy



RSVPs appreciated, particularly if bringing pie.
blk: (kitty)
Hell of a party. I had a absolutely fabulous rockin' time, the pie was delish, and the weather behaved -perfectly-. We finally wound down about 10 hours later...

Alas, something in the weekend was too much for me. Today I am at home in bed with a sore throat, complete with chills and a fever. Fortunately, I'm in a good, relaxed mood, and I have no plans in the next couple days that will suffer from cancelling. Hopefully it won't last longer then that.

I haven't taken a sick day in -years-. It sorta makes me feel little again. Except that I don't get someone to take my temperature and feel my forehead and bring me stuff. :)
blk: (spring)
Carnival Event - blk's After-Carnival Pie Party
... "Tell 'em we'll have punch and pie. More people will come if they think we have punch and pie." -- Cartman, South Park

This is your chance to end the CMU Carnival weekend on a good note! I'll provide the place, hopefully Nature will provide some nice weather, you can help provide the pie, and we can all sit back and unwind. Come relax off your hangover, get rid of extra party food/beer, get your hair braided, blow some soap bubbles, say goodbye to all the CMU alums on your way to the airport, play some games, and/or eat pie!

The primary theme to this party is pie. Anybody is welcome to contribute, as long as it is homemade. Leftover party food/drinks/etc that you're looking to get rid of, or yummy pie accessories are also welcome. Sweet pies, savory pies, vegetable pies, totally undefinable experiment pies... bring them! If you can't bring a pie, just bring yourself.

Where: My house. If you can't figure out where that is by web-stalking me, you're not invited.1
When: Sunday, April 23, 2pm until I kick you out. Pie will be served at the obvious time. Things usually wind down around sunset, but there might be games after that.
Who: You, CMUites, and whoever else you think would enjoy it. Feel free to spread the word around to your immediate friends.
RSVP: Appreciated, particularly if you are planning on bringing food, but not required.

My house is conveniently located a 15 minute walk away from the CMU 28x bus stop, with routes running regularly to the airport.

Kids are welcome, and there will be at least two in attendance. If you're allergic, be sure to medicate appropriately beforehand. I have no pets.

1 Not really, but I'll probably at least snicker a little at you. (HINT: try finger + googlemaps)
blk: (spring)
Carnival Event - blk's After-Carnival Pie Party
... or "Come for the oppressive feelings of shame and 'what the fuck?' Stay for the pie." -- Choo Choo, from Something Positive

Despite what you may think, this isn't an official Carnival party. Carnival parties are for the previous three days, so this is your chance to end the weekend on a good note. I'll just provide the place to wind down. Come relax off your hangover, get rid of extra party food/beer, get your hair braided, say goodbye to everybody on your way to the airport, play some games, and/or eat pie!

The primary theme to this party is PIE. Anybody is welcome to contribute, as long as it is homemade. Leftover party food/drinks that you're looking to get rid of are also welcome.

Where: My house. If you can't figure out where that is by web-stalking me, you're not invited.1
When: Sunday, April 17, 2pm until I kick you out. Pie will be served at the obvious time.
Who: You, and whoever else you think would enjoy it. Feel free to spread the word around, although I'd prefer if the guest list were kept within two degrees of me. If in doubt, ask.
RSVP: Appreciated but not required. If you would like to bring a pie, please let me know ahead of time so I can coordinate foodstuff better.

My house is conveniently located 15 minute walk away from a 28x bus stop, with routes running regularly to the airport.

Kids are welcome, and there will be at least two in attendance. If you're allergic, be sure to medicate appropriately beforehand, or else factor that into your plans for not staying too long. I have no pets.

Currently known pie-like contributions: cheesecake, no-sugar cheesecake, marshmallow, (pecan | pumpkin)?, apple.

1 Not really, but I'll probably at least snicker a little at you. (HINT: try finger + googlemaps)
blk: (cathat)
Carnival 2005: April 15-16

It's almost time for the 4th annual, world1-famous, after-Carnival PIE party, coming soon to a house near2 you, on Apr 17! Got leftover food, extra beer, spare $100 bills lying around from other Carnival parties that you don't know what to do with? Bring it by and hang out, laze around, get in that last bit of socializing before leaving for the airport, play some games, get your hair braided, or whatever. Otherwise, start practicing your pie-making skills, and optionally bring by something yummy (no store-bought allowed)!

Party is conveniently located 15 minute walk away from a 28x bus stop, with routes running regularly to the airport.

Another announcement/invite will happen later, with more details. If you comment here, I'll make sure you get a personal email about it.

1 for certain interpretations of the current size of the relevant world
2 where "you" are assumed to be near "cmu," which is where all the fun stuff will be.

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