The Tragic Optimist

Author Archive: Ann Z

Great Cricket Baking Experiment

If we’re friends on facebook, you may have seen my posts about baking with cricket flour.  I figured I’d write up the whole experience here since this is an easier format for a longer post. Background I’d been a vegetarian for a long time for environmental and sustainability reasons.  I recently added a small amount …

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“learn about new things that I’ve never heard of”

Hazel is now 3 1/2 years old. At bedtime, recently, she’s been asking if we could travel to China. I’m not sure where she got the idea that she wanted to go to China. She doesn’t really have a firm grasp on geography yet (if you tell her we live in Minnesota, she’ll argue that no, …

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The rhubarb bars they didn’t want you to try*

My farmer’s market has two bake-offs each summer – rhubarb in June and apple in September.  On bake-off day, you bring in 60 servings of your creation to the market, and then people can pay $5 to try one of each entry and vote for their favorite.  Last year I entered the apple one and …

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Kickstarter thoughts 2: An Introvert’s Guide to Kickstarter

I’ve been thinking about the introvert’s guide to Kickstarter for a while now.  At first, I joked that it would consist of two words, “Just don’t.”  But that’s not true or fair.  My campaign did actually fund, so it would be disingenuous to say that, and even beyond the funding, I am thankful that I …

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Kickstarter Thoughts: Part I, the basics

So for anyone following along from that last post, the Kickstarter for my book was successful (hooray! huge sigh of relief! and thank you, thank you to everyone who supported me, financially or emotionally!) It seems like the thing to do once you’ve run a successful Kickstarter campaign is to write a post with Kickstarter …

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Kickstarting emotions

If you’re friends with me on facebook, you’re probably well aware that I’ve started a Kickstarter campaign.  The project is making a board book for babies and toddlers in glasses.  It’s an idea that has been rattling in my brain for a long time now.  I hear a lot from parents at Little Four Eyes …

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monarch butterfly costume

This weekend was the Monarch Festival.  There’s a fun run for kids, and kids are encouraged to wear costumes.  Luckily for me, my parents were visiting the weekend before the festival, and my mom is a miracle-worker when it comes to pulling together costumes — actually, she’s pretty much magic when it comes to anything …

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big. round. numbers.

So it’s looking like I’m going to be encountering some big round numbers this month. The first is likely to be my car hitting 100,000 miles.  It’ll probably happen by Monday.  My sweet, little purple toaster car.  It’s a 2005 Scion xB.  The second car I’ve ever owned, and certainly the car I’ve driven the …

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Kindergartner no more

Today was Zoe’s last day of kindergarten.  For the past few weeks, she’s been oscillating between being really excited about the end of the year, and then really sad about the end of the year.  Last night, she excitedly told me that when she left the school today, she’d be a first grader.  This morning, …

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Yes read the book!

Watching Zoe learn to read has been one of those crazy things.  In a way, it’s very reminiscent of when she was first learning to talk.  Before starting kindergarten, she had one or two words she recognized (“no”, “on”, and “zoo”), but then she started coming home with small simple books, and she’d work hard …

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