How to Steam Vegetables (Properly)

Vegetables that are cooked properly will retain their vitamins. Cook them in only a little water over low to medium heat for only five to seven minutes. Vegetables already contain water, which is released during the cooking process.

Green vegetables cooked with the lid firmly over the pan can sometimes have too strong a taste for some people. To keep the heat in and some extra strong flavor out, lay a cabbage leaf over the top to cover the vegetables as they cook.

Your vegetables will take longer to cook than the incorrect method of drowning them in water over high heat, but they will be healthier for you and taste better.

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Strategy

When it’s not a scorching 88 degrees outside, it’s humid and raining. You can’t win, living in Minnesota these days, in regards to the weather. Seasons like these make me almost wish it were winter again (and when it is, it lasts half the year, and I begin wishing for hot weather, which restarts the cycle all over again).

Being the mastermind deviant I am, the rules placed upon me at home no longer apply, though I find myself locked up in my bedroom, Internet cable running from beneath the floor across the short length of my room over to my (technically my brother’s) laptop.

Ignore the melancholy tone in all of this writing — I am running on lack of sleep and caffeine.


My top Google searches are PDF classics by authors such as Lewis Carroll, Lemony Snicket, and Vladimir Nabokov. I even created a Bookmark File in Chrome just for PDF books. For some reason, I can’t sit still long enough to read from an actual paper book. Komisch.

My recently watched YouTube videos are about “how to be a model” or “anorexia stories”, “height and weight requirements”, and “model diets”, along with some Vines compilations and Sami Yusuf nasheeds (after all, it is Ramadan).

I should be cleaning my room, especially the wreck of a closet I have. But I get bored and frustrated easily, and the same clothes I folded yesterday remain in a messy heap on the floor. The other day, I cleaned out my dresser drawers, removing clothes I no longer fit into (sizes 0 – 7, respectively) into plastic grocery bags. I carried these bags into the living room, where Mom keeps as a storage room, per se, and wrote “Nadia’s clothes — KEEP — do NOT sell!” because someday maybe I will be a wintergirl again.

Now that my dresser is sorted, I must do the same for the closet. But where can I store the pretty velvet dresses hanging on green plastic hangers? I can’t put those in a plastic bag. They will surely get ruined.

How terribly ugly my wardrobe is these days. I have to wear discounted guy’s shirts because I’m too huge and “curvy” for anything from the junior’s (not that I would want – or could possibly afford – any of that skimpy, limpy shit anyway).

Dad keeps talking about visiting the East Coast later this summer. He wants to bring me with. The way he talks to me these days, I wonder: Does he really want to bring me along? I wonder what I need to do to change. I can’t be the perfect daughter to my parents, and I never will be. I am too different. But, there is something I can do:

I can lose weight.

I know I am capable of doing so. I know what happens when I do. I am perfectly aware of the side affects, symptoms I have had before last year in the spring to autumn: brittle nails, hair loss, anxiety, insomnia. But it’s alright (I tell myself this, at least), because most of my friends are ten lbs less than I weigh, and I only would lose twenty max and still be at a healthy range for my height and age. Fasting is perfectly healthy, as long as I eat plenty of healthy foods in between and take supplements and do some light exercise (perhaps meditation and Yoga? That helps with anxiety and concentration especially). I drink too much coffee, but I can try to drink more water and tea.

Oh, the planning that goes hand-in-hand with an eating disorder. Really, it’s tiresome…

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No Game No Life

title (English): No Game No Life
title (Japanese): ノーゲーム・ノーライフ
genre: fantasy
synopsis: A brother and his younger (freakin’ adorable) sister get sucked into a fantasy game world after winning an online game of chess. In this alternate world, there are ten rules: 
  1. All bloodshed, war, and pillaging is forbidden.
  2. All conflicts will be resolved through games.
  3. In games, each party will bet something that both sides agree is of equal value.
  4. As long as it doesn’t go against the 3rd Oath, the things that are wagered and the rules of the game will not be questioned.
  5. The challenged party has the right to decide the rules of the game.
  6. Any bets made in accordance with the Oaths must be upheld.
  7. Conflicts between groups will be conducted by designated representatives with absolute authority.
  8. Being caught cheating during a game is grounds for an instant loss.
  9. In the name of God, the previous rules may never be changed.
  10. Everyone must get along and play together.

my rating: 5/5 stars ✨✨✨✨✨ The animation is vivid and surreal, plus the characters are all interesting, especially the brother and sister, Sora and Shiro.

You can watch this anime on Crunchyroll for free. There will be intervals for advertisements, however, they do not last very long. Watch No Game No Life English Sub online here.
When you watch anime on Crunchyroll (using the app), you can take screenshots on your phone and add the series to an instant queue, where you can always revisit to keep track of your anime. When I’m not watching anime on YouTube or Netflix, I find myself using Crunchyroll a lot. It’s really nice. Now, go make an account, stupid.
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Sunset Masjid

Yesterday night I painted a sunset behind a silhouetted masjid. It didn’t turn out exactly as planned, but I love the result regardless.

I had to use tortillas as painting palettes because it was all I had around.

I did a basic sketch in white crayon over the background then painting the silhouette.

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School is Out

School is officially out for the summer! Here are some random school photos.

Happy summer!
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Waiting for Summer

It was 70 degrees Fahranheit outside yesterday, so I slipped on my sandals and set up a wooden chair in the backyard to read a book. 

Above: A quote from the book I’m reading.

I can’t wait until school gets out. I can see myself packing a backpack with my iPhone and earphones (for taking pictures and listening to music, mainly), a good book, something to drink, and my sketchbook and necessary art supplies (be they charcoal sticks or oil crayons). I would drive out of the countryside into town and find somewhere shady to be alone, and I’d read. Or write. Or draw. It would be great.
Summer can’t come soon enough.
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Langweilig

Time is slipping from my fingers. It’s always the same routine (langweilig), so I am relieved to find there are only a few weeks left in the school year.

Despite the weather being wet and cold, many (white) girls at school believe short-shorts is appropriate.

They’re always athletes, these white girls, so they can get away with it easily. Once, a black girl in my Language Arts class wore short-shorts earlier in the day when I had first seen her, but was wearing a dress in L.A. class (later in the day, sixth period). When I had asked her “Weren’t you wearing short-shorts this morning?” she smiled and nodded, then told me a hall monitor pulled her aside and told her she can’t wear those in school, so she had to change. We continued to share a short rant of racism and feminism before the teacher yelled at us to sit down.

The flowers Dad bought Mom for her birthday and Mothers Day – both of which are about the same time of year – are dying. Well, the roses are. Mom doesn’t like roses. She says they don’t last long and aren’t very pretty. She likes the flowers we grow in our garden/yard, like the purple lilacs or orange marigolds. I forget what her favorite flower is.
Mom made pumpkin oat cookies, and they were delicious. I think I ate six a day for a while.
We went to a buffet on Sunday. They had remodeled it since the last time we had been there, and now it looks really nice inside, plus there is a better variety of food. The food tasted a lot better than I had remembered. 
After eating, we walked around the mall it was in.
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