Saturday, September 10, 2011

you can hang with me...

Oh hai, y'all!

My extravagant summer has finally ended: PRE-SCHOOL IS BACK IN SESSION!

To all my adoring fans (aka Katie Lary), I'm sorry I didn't update y'all on what I was reading, drinking, or where I was riding my bike. GUYS! I WAS TOO BUSY! I SPENT THIS SUMMER THINKING I WAS DON DRAPER! I'm sorry. It wont happen again!! (Lets be honest: it will probably happen again.)

Here is what you missed:
I read some books (most notably: On Beauty by Zadie Smith... more on that one at another time.)
I drank some summery beers (mostly: Bell's Oberon, Summer Shandy ((don't judge! It is just SO refreshing!)) and Sam Adams Summertime)
I went to Hawaii
I went to Tennessee
I ran a half-marathon (HOLY CRAP, right??!)
I bought a new bike
I rode my bike all over town
I went dancing
I saw some theatre
I cuddled with Weeble
I co-taught a two week Theatre class to a bunch of three and four year olds
I wrote some music
I saw some live music (OH EM GEE- Sia AND The Flaming Lips)
I went to the Art Institute
I became obsessed with Twitter (FOLLOW ME @ThisKatAttacks)
I developed a crazy penchant for dance music (mostly Robyn- SWOON)
I made some new friends
I went to the lake
I went on adventures with both new and old friends
I went on some dates (oooh la la!)
I discovered something called a PIMM'S CUP (So good y'all... just don't try to ride your bike after drinking six of them, even if they do taste like juice.)

SEE! Busy right?!??
Well, guys, I'm back. Expect an another update soon! You can look forward to me telling you how I felt about Zadie Smith's novel, my favorite fall-time brew, and how I kicked ass in Lazar Tag at my friend Andrew's Bachelor Party last night...

For now: watch this music video & then head down to Pilsen to check out the Chicago Fringe Festival!!!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

these kids are incredible...

My dad posted this video on his Facebook profile this morning and I HAD TO SHARE! Enjoy!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

i've had it with these motha f*cking paddocks on this motha f*cking plane...

This week my beautiful bicycle was stolen from outside my apartment...

They took the lock, the bike and the stop sign the bike was locked to.

It has been a hard week...saying goodbye to my Cherry Red Jamis... BUT NEXT WEEK I'LL BE IN HAWAII!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I've decided to put the bike issue on the back burner until I return. In the meantime this blog shall be known as BEERS AND BOOKS... IN HAWAAAAIIIII!!!!

SO! For my trip I've been planning out beach reading material.
I think I have settled on:
No One Belongs Here More Than You (I was supposed to read this last summer... and didn't)
The Well of Lost Plots (Part Three in Jasper Fforde's Thursday Next Saga)
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks (some scientists harvested this woman's cells without her knowledge...BOGUS!)

There it is! The whole fam bam flies out bright and early on Wednesday morning. It will be like Snakes on a Plane only more epic...

Saturday, May 14, 2011

two books, wacko and a great album...

I am no stranger to tears. In fact, some might say I am a "crier." I cry at weddings, movies and even occasionally while listening to NPR's This American Life. (oh, Ira Glass...) HOWEVER, it is rare for me to cry while I am reading. It has only happened a handful of times-- Bridge to Terabithia (ten year old Kat is still crying), Written on the Body (why IS the measure of love loss??!), Tuesdays with Morrie (I was 18...don't judge me) and most recently (on the EL) while reading The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood.

GUYS- to say this book is beautiful is an understatement! Atwood's tale of a once wealthy Canadian family is poignant, sad and incredibly creative. The story is revealed to the reader in three ways- through the eyes an elderly protagonist, newspaper articles and a novel (The Blind Assasin) written by one of the family members. A NOVEL WITH IN A NOVEL, Y'ALL!!! I give it ten stars out of five. Seriously. That good.

I finished The Blind Assassin on Tuesday night- and picked up Room by Emma Donoghue on Wednesday morning. I finished it this morning...

I've been very busy as of late with rehearsals, kickball, performances, meet ups with old friends.. but every second of free time I could manage the last couple of days was spent reading this book. The story is told from the perspective of a five year Jack, who has been in Room (an eleven by eleven foot soundproof shed in some man's backyard) his whole life. He was born in Room, he plays in room, he has P.E. in Room. He shares room with Ma- who protects him from the scary Old Nick who comes to visit Ma almost every night. As the story unfolds- Ma decides it is time to get out of Room.

This book is super terrifying/ incredibly interesting. A great summer read!!!

AND SPEAKING OF SUMMER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Magic Hat's summer brew "Wacko" is back! This beer has beets in it, y'all. It's not too hoppy and not too sweet... but delightfully refreshing. Check it out! T's has it on tap-- $7.50 double pints. le sigh.

IN OTHER BIG NEWS-- I got an advanced copy of Jill Andrews' new album The Mirror. AND IT IS WONDERFUL! The album goes on sale June 7th and can be purchased here.

here she is performing the title track:

I'm off to go for a run... HAPPY WEEKEND!!

Monday, May 9, 2011

boogers, jorts and Maira Kalman

Today was a teacher in-service day at the pre-school where I work. This means that I spent most of the day disinfecting/ scrubbing dried boogers off of things. (I know... dream job. DREAM JOB!!) To distract me from the grossness I listened Mandolin Orange, a band that my brother introduced me to this weekend:

WHOA! RIGHT?!??! I do love a good boy/girl bluegrass band! PLUS the weather was pretty great today... so that means... I AM WEARING JORTS (for those of you who don't know, jorts are jean shorts.) I have this very WONDERFUL (awful) pair of gray jorts that I made last summer out of a very expensive pair of JCrew jeans (good choices.) These particular jorts are the most comfortable/ unflattering piece of clothing I own and I am VERY excited to start wearing them EVERYDAY now that I don't have to worry about frostbite.

I have to cut this blog kind of short because I'm now heading to rehearsal for a new performance I am creating with my theatre company, Genesis Ensemble. This particular piece is inspired by Maira Kalman's book The Principles of Uncertainty. Here are my recommendations to you: 1. go get yourself a six pack of Bell's Oberon (yay! it's back in season) 2. while you're out stop by your local bookstore and pick up a copy of Kalman's book (you'll want to own me) 3. watch Kalman talk about her book here:

Sunday, May 1, 2011

colette and a story about an incredible father...

On friday night I had dinner with two of my best friends, my father and two of his best friends at the wonderful Hopleaf. This is a bar that is well known for it's very long beer list (and as the title of my blog suggests... I have an incredible affinity for this barley flavored beverage.) The dinner was delicious, the company was wonderful BUT the BEER. Oh...the BEER!

I fell in love with a particular brew called Colette from The Great Divide Brewing Company in CO. I recommend going out and grabbing yourself a six pack of this wonderful farmhouse ale while listening to this song by Langhorne Slim called, of course, Colette.

I got to spend the rest of the weekend hanging out with my Dad who was visiting me from Ohio. We had a great time watching movies, playing guitar, walking around different neighborhoods in chicago, trying new food and talking about family, love and happiness. I couldn't as for a better father- a sentiment that was echoed by his friends on friday who told me that they have taken to calling him, "the rock."

...not to be confused with THIS "the rock." My dad "the rock" is WAY COOLER... and better looking...

Right now I am working through a book about someone else's father, Mr. March: father to Meg, Amy, Beth and Jo from the novel (and one of my ALL TIME FAVES) Little Women. Geraldine Brook's beautiful book March follows the life of the father from the famous classic who, for the majority of Little Women, is away fighting in the Civil War. I have to admit, March is beautifully written... but hugely heartbreaking. It has taken me at least two months to get through even though it is quite short (only 280 pages long.) I've needed to take long breaks from the racism, torture and the horrors of war that this book describes.. breaks that sometimes lasted for weeks at a time; but I keep coming back for the incredible story, beautiful writing and small glimpses into the family I first fell in love with at age ten.

I recommend this book for lovers of classic literature and history buffs but with a warning: you will be shocked and saddened by this glimpse into our country's past and left wondering... why do we treat people as "others?"

Monday, April 25, 2011

the dog days are over

Go ahead, scream it with me, "SPRRRRRRRRRRRIIIIIIIIIIIIIINNNNNNNNNG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

After a supremely miserable winter I would like give a huge welcome to SPRRRRRRRRRRRIIIIIIIIIIIIIINNNNNNNNNG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Soon lilacs will be popping up all over my wonderful city, kickball season will start, long bike rides followed with day drinking will highlight my weekends and many a picnic/ book will be enjoyed by the lake.

Speaking of books--

Guys, Micheal Chabon's novel is flawless. SUPERHEROS, LOVE, HOMOS AND WWII??!?! What else could you want?! In all honesty, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay has definitly become on of my top ten favorite books of all time.
East of Eden
Their Eyes Were Watching God
The People's History of the United States
The Red Tent
Les Miserables
Little Women
The Wind Up Bird Chronicle

and of course Yertle the Turtle)

The book chronicles the lives of two cousins, Jo Kavalier and Sam Clay, and their partnership in the comic book industry before, during and after WWII in Brooklyn. Kavalier is a Czech refugee who has come to America to escape Hitler and save up money to bring the rest of his family over. Clay is an awkward young man with a thirst for literature. The book, part action adventure, part love story, part portrait of a young artist, part war drama- is exciting, poignant, sad and yet incredibly hopeful.

Now if you excuse me... I'm off to enjoy a trip to target... while singing this song:

Sunday, March 13, 2011


Holy BONKERS, y'all.

It has been a while since I last posted.

Here is a quick rundown of what has transpired:
I read some books. (finished Portia's book, the Harry Potter Series, Strength 2.0 and am currently on Even Cowgirls get the Blues)
I went to some parties.
I turned 26.
I drank some beer.
Survived a Blizzard.
I went to the gym a few times.
I met some new peeps.
I lost five pounds.
I drank some beer.
I bought a dining room table.
I got a new guitar. (thanks big brother)
I got a sewing machine (thanks aunt sara.)
I signed up for a half marathon.
I had to stop quilting for a tick. (hand cramps)
I found out that Tank Sushi delivers (OH MY GOD!!! BEST DISCOVERY EVER!)
I drank some beer.
I watched some movies.
I saw some old pals.
I drank some more beer.

Exciting, right?!?


In addition I've been thinking about getting back in the saddle about crossing some stuff of this New Year to do list/ ditch the ones that I no longer think I want to do/ should do.

Lets review. Here was my original list:
1. Read DOUBLE the number of books I read in 2010. (I read 23 books-- so in 2011 I will read 46!!)
2. Buy a dining room table (so that I have a place to put a sewing machine!)
3. Finish two quilts.
4. Run a half marathon.
6. Bike with Caitlin to Milwaukee for a weekend.
7. Start the process to getting my Montessori certification!!!!!!
8. Visit my big brother in the mountains and his lovely wife-to-be.
9. Go camping!!
10. Set a new PR in the Proud to Run 10K.
11. Lose 20lbs. (YIKES!!!)

Reflection/ Responce
1. Yeeeah- I don't think I'm going to read forty six books this year. Last year I read 23- this year I'll go for one more- 24.
2. DONE AND DONE. I BOUGHT A DINING ROOM TABLE! WOO HOO! that is crossed of the list.
3. Hand cramps have put a halt in production, however I still see myself cuddling up with two new Kat Paddock quilts by the new year...
4. I have signed up for the Chicago Rock and Roll half marathon!!
6. Sadly, for personal reasons FAR too personal for a blog, number six will not be happening.
7. This will not be happening either- I am in the midst of a very exciting quarter life crisis. WHAT WILL I DO WITH MY LIFE. I not know. However, I AM in the process of figuring out what the next step will be. This is both exciting and terrifying. Maybe my "to do list" for next year will include a new life "action plan."
8. I am hoping to visit Brian and Jess sometime in August...
9. Who wants to go camping with me??!?? totally still on.
10. STILL ON! I will make this year's Proud to Run my BIT*H
11. I've lost five lbs already--- 15 more to go! It is totally a struggle... especially with my love of beer, sandwiches and tacos. mmm tacos.

So there is that. Onward and upward. Looking forward to crossing some things off this refined list!!! :-)

Thursday, January 20, 2011

A Delicious Weekend...

This year for Christmas Caitlin bought us a cooking class at the Chopping Block in Lincoln Square. The title of the class was, "Eat, Drink and be Merry." (She knows me SO WELL)

Our menu:
Sausage and Herbed Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms
Sauteed Beef Tenderloin with Herb Butter
Broccoli and Cauliflower Gratin
and Pumpkin Donuts with Cinnamon Suger
(and of course... two glasses of wine or beer per student!)

We had a WONDERFUL time and are already setting our sights on the next class to take!

As far as books go- the Harry Potter quest is going well,The Philosophical Baby has come back OFF the book shelf and into my messenger bag and (speaking of food) Portia De Rossi's new memoir Unbearable Lightness is currently decorating my bedside table.

I'm not usually very good at juggling more than one literary project at a time... so we'll see how this turns out.

Here is Portia talking about her book on Ellen (I have to admit... this made me cry):

Sunday, January 9, 2011

pillers and a quilt...

--I made these pillows when I was at my parent's house in Ohio. I used a Moda charm pack called "whimsy" and my Mom's Pfaff sewing machine.

-- This is my first quilt! It is actually something called a "cheaters cloth" in the pattern of "grandma's flower garden." I'm using it to learn how to hand quilt. My next project will be a jelly roll quilt made out of strips from Moda's line "breakfast at tiffany's." I'm pretty excited about it!

I'm now heading back into my bed to snuggle with my cat Weeble and Harry Potter. Happy Sunday FUNDAY!

Saturday, January 8, 2011


A few weeks ago I posted the Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zero's song, "Home." I just saw this cover on a friend's facebook page and it was too cute not to post on here:


Thursday, January 6, 2011

so this is the new year...

2010. Done and DONE.

2011, its really good to see you. You are shiny and new and I love you already.

In my last post I talked a lot about starting Alison Gopnik's book The Philosophical Baby. I have to be honest, I haven't really read any of it since then. WOOPS!

I got distracted with my project to re-read all the Harry Potter books (am now working my way through Book Four of the series.) I'm having a great time picking up on things I missed the first go round, giggling about the silly situations that I'd forgotten and simply getting swept up in the magic of it all.

My reading time has also taken a bit of a back seat to a new hobby: sewing. When I was visiting with my parents for Christmas my mom taught me how to use her sewing machine and how to hand quilt. I made four pillows and am currently working on my first lap quilt called, "grandma's flower garden." Pictures coming soon!

The New Year is a time when most people make resolutions.
Instead of resolutions I'm making a to do list (in no particular order):

1. Read DOUBLE the number of books I read in 2010. (I read 23 books-- so in 2011 I will read 46!!)
2. Buy a dining room table (so that I have a place to put a sewing machine!)
3. Finish two quilts.
4. Run a half marathon.
6. Bike with Caitlin to Milwaukee for a weekend.
7. Start the process to getting my Montessori certification!!!!!!
8. Visit my big brother in the mountains and his lovely wife-to-be.
9. Go camping!!
10. Set a new PR in the Proud to Run 10K.
11. Lose 20lbs. (YIKES!!!)

Every time I cross one of these things of my 2011 to do list I'll be sure to let you know. Perhaps I'll even have a celebration of sorts. WHO KNOWS! The year is filled with possibilities!

Enjoy this beautiful song by my favorite musician, Jill Andrews (best served with a Founders Imperial Stout:)