Friday, February 28, 2014

Friday Food - Softly

I know that I talked, recently, about dealing with a few days when I had to avoid alcohol. I've since learned that the antibiotic I was on has actually been used in some studies to help people break their dependency on alcohol - by making them sick as a dog whenever they drink. So... yeah... glad I abstained for those days.

This weekend, while I'm able to have alcohol, I'm gearing up for a few days next week when I'll be required to eat only soft foods.

You see, as follow-up to the situation which had me on antibiotics, now I'm going in to have a very minor bit of surgery to see what might have caused the infection which needed the antibiotic. (I know... too much info. sorry.)

At any rate, I've been forewarned that for a few days I'll want to avoid any sharp foods or crunchy foods. So no peanuts or popcorn (or Cracker Jack), and nothing that would put stress on my upper jaw. Which means also nothing through a straw.

I was thinking of going to a movie on Tuesday, but since I can't imagine a movie without popcorn and pop, I think I might have to skip that. I'm planning a few days of ice cream, mashed potatoes, and possibly guacamole - if I can figure out what to eat it with.

Oh. And Shamrock Shakes. Because - as luck would have it - they're in season. Come to think of it, they were also in season when I got my braces back in 5th grade (or was it 6th?). I'm not sure if that's just really weird timing, or incredibly good luck.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

How Much is Too Much?

As I left work, yesterday, I got into my car and - as has been happening on the extremely cold days - my brakes decided to only halfway engage. But I've gotten kind of used to that this winter, so I just adjusted and headed out.

On street level, I waited my turn until the traffic inched far enough along for me to pull into the lane I needed, and then watched a few people slip and slide down the ice-covered street ricocheting in and out of potholes the size of washtubs.

I think it was at that point that I loudly swore some random combination of Anglo-Saxon words declaring - to no one in particular - that I'm ready for this winter to be over.

I suspect that a lot of people are feeling that way this year, whether they live in the Twin Cities or somewhere else in the northern sections of the country. It has just been such a brutal winter. So freakin' cold.

Last year, we had snow from October until May. I don't mean that it was on the ground until May. I mean that it actually snowed in May of last year.

And we all kind of joked about it as we complained and shrugged our shoulders and kept going.

This year, we started out mainly dealing with cold, then the snow came in. When I walk the pup on windy days only I need to worry about the windchill - the snow on either side of the sidewalks is so deep that she's completely sheltered. (I think we've got something like 2 or 3 feet of snow across our entire yard right now.)

I'm beginning to think that I might pack up my car and do like Neil Diamond suggests and "go where the weather suits my clothes." I suspect that I'll see a lot of Minnesotans there.

**Note: If you don't follow that musical reference, here's the song: 

Monday, February 24, 2014

Movie Monday - The Sequel

I made the mistake of watching a sequel over the weekend. A sequel of a kids movie which I really kind of liked. The sequel... well... it wasn't as good.

The series (of two) movies was the "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs" set of two movies. The first one was really fun. The second one... it tried way too hard. It was the leftovers that probably should have remained leftover, instead of being a new dinner.

Yes, the animation was fun. Yes, the puns were many. But... ya know... beyond that I probably should have stuck with just the first one.

Overall rating: C. It just wasn't really all that interesting. Which is sad, because it did have potential.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Childhood Flashback

For a day when we haven't left the house, this has been a really busy day. In no particular order: We cleaned the house. We got a new stove delivered (but not hooked up - long story). We watched part of an Indiana Jones movie. We had lunch. We started doing laundry. We cleared some of the snow/ice off the sidewalks ("some" is as good as we could do at this point).

After we had the new stove in the house, and we were both inside and doing more cleaning/tidying/laundering, Christopher turned on the stereo and so we've been doing our work with a musical accompaniment. We've been chatting and scratching the pup and looking outside at the brilliant sun on the snow, and, somewhere along the way, I realized how much this feels like a weekend day when I was growing up.

Okay, so my parents had a drug store, and my dad was out of the house on Saturdays when most of the housecleaning was getting done. And most of the hanging out at home with the whole family was done on Sundays. But the combined effect is the same.

I think this is possibly enhanced by the fact that we're awaiting the arrival of a family friend (making her way carefully up the apparently-unfriendly roads), and tomorrow my folks will be making their way up here, as well (hopefully on less-unfriendly roads once the road chemicals have had some extra time to work).

At any rate, the feeling is there. The rare "this feels right" kind of feeling that is so hard to grasp. You'll forgive me if I wrap this up and enjoy it before it flits away.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Fading Daisies

I know that we've discussed how much I enjoy fresh flowers. I actually bought some just yesterday as a "welcome home" for Christopher, in fact.

And, at the same time, I went through the house and threw out most of the remaining flowers from Christopher's birthday a couple of weeks ago. Well... The roses had long since faded and been binned, but the daisies were holding on strong.

Sort of.

For whatever reason, different vases of daisies gave up the fight at different times. By yesterday, I was down to just one vase. So I moved it to a better location in the house, and put the new roses into "pride of place" and went about my day.

Today, however, the last of the daisies are looking a bit sad. The yellow centers are turning dark. The petals are starting to get a bit limp. The water... well... it went from pure and clear to *not* in the course of the past day.

I know I need to throw them out before they start to smell unpleasant and drop petals everywhere. But... I keep hoping that they'll have just one more day in them. I think that this time it's because outside we're getting hit with 6-12 inches of snow, and a gradual drop in temps that will take us from 30s today to a high of around 2 during the middle of next week.

In mid-summer when there are flowers in bloom everywhere it's much easier to move on.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Bachelor Week

I'm not going to lie. Having the occasional night at home alone is kind of nice.

I lived alone for a lot of years - with a few years in the middle when I had roommates, but still had my own room and my own bed.

And there are just times when it's nice to let your thoughts spread out, not to mention letting yourself sprawl across a bed.

But Christopher has been gone since Friday. This isn't a long trip (he's back tomorrow), so there's no real idea of adjusting totally to a different routine, and yet - with the dog - it's meant getting her to adjust to only having one person in the house with her.

He's been gone just long enough that the pup isn't exactly waiting for him to come home after work, but she's still running to the back door whenever there's a noise - expecting him to be there. (In fact, when I answered a phonecall from Christopher tonight, I apparently said "hello" in just the right tone of voice. She doesn't usually care when we're on the phone, but she gave a half "woof" and ran into the kitchen to see if he was there.)

And I'm kind of at the same point. I've had a couple of nights of getting used to him not being here. And then a couple of nights of "nice, I have the place to myself." And now I'm ready for him to be back.

Yeah. Bachelorhood is nice - to a point - but I think I kind of prefer the couplehood stuff.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

The Failure of Prohibition

I totally get why Prohibition failed in the early 20th century in the United States.

I'm not a big drinker. I have friends who will go out with us and seem genuinely surprised when I have a glass of wine or a cocktail or a beer. Christopher's parents (remember - we've been together for eight and a half years) occasionally re-ask me whether or not I drink at all (since I frequently drive when we go to visit them, I tend not to drink).

But I do like wine. And beer. And some cocktails. And on weekends like this I realize how much I like them.

You see, due to a weird non-sinus/sinus/jaw infection thing, I'm on some antibiotics which don't mix with alcohol. Basically, I was told that this stuff won't just have its efficacy impacted by alcohol, but it would actually make me sick to mix the two. And, you know, I'm taking the antibiotics so that I can *stop* being sick, so I really don't want to work against that.

But the week was kind of long, and Christopher left yesterday morning for a few days, and I got home last night and thought "I could really go for an Amaretto and Coke." But... yeah... those antibiotics. So I just had the Coke, instead.

Then tonight, as I have been sitting and watching TV, I found myself thinking "A drink would go really well with this..." After which I reminded myself that maybe chocolate milk would be good.

I finish my antibiotics in a couple of days, and should be able to have a drink by about Wednesday (apparently they take 2 days to fully work their way out of your system). Luckily, that's the same day Christopher gets home, so possibly we'll be able to celebrate by raising a glass.

I cannot imagine what it would have been like to get a craving for alcohol on February 15, 1920, and have had to wait a little more than 13 years to actually have a drink.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

A Valentine's Eve Tiz List

I was thinking of putting together a list of things I loved for Valentine’s Day. But “love” is a really strong word. When you use it properly, it’s the kind of word that is supposed to be used for people, not just stuff.

So, since Valentine’s Day is hyped as the day of love, but this is only Valentine’s Eve, I decided to go with a list of things that I just really like a lot. In no particular order. These are simply things that make me happy on one level or another. (Fourteen of them, since Valentine’s Day is on the 14th, obviously.)

1) Peanut butter. On a spoon. Dipped in Nestle Quik. (Yes, that’s all one thing.)

2) Sunny days – regardless of temperature.

3) Hostess apple pies.

4) Playing "stair ball" with the pup. (I stand at the bottom, she stands at the top. She drops a tennis ball down to me, I toss it back up to her. It's part of our morning routine. It *might* have contributed to one or two mornings when I got to work just a hair late...)

5) Buttercream frosting.

6) Canned black olives, and green olives (with the red pimiento) out of a jar.

7) The word serendipity.

8) Facebook. (Okay, this is a love-hate situation. But I do enjoy seeing updates from people I know – or knew – I just wish they would quit mucking about with it.)

9) Fast food. Yes, I’m all for a really good meal at a really good restaurant, but I grew up 35 miles from the closest McDonald’s. Fifty-five miles from the closest Long John Silver’s. Panda Express didn’t exist when I was a kid, Der Wienerschnitzel and H. Salt Esquire Fish & Chips were things we got when we visited my grandparents in Los Angeles, and Burger King was my “taste of home” place when I lived in Paris. I totally crave fast food from time to time. And I’m okay with that.

10) Insurance.

11) Disneyland. And Walt Disney World. Both kind of equally, but for totally different reasons.

12) Really comfy sweaters.

13) “Curl up on the couch with a book or a bad movie and order in food and not move” days. Preferably with Christopher, but I’ll be honest and admit that I do this when he’s not around, too. When he's not around, though, I usually also have a phone close by. Just in case - and so I don't have to get up at all.

14) Books. Yes, they’re awfully decorative, but I also just like them for the sake that they’re books. They’ve got weight to them. They’re ideas with heft. Dreams with substance. Fantasy with force (especially when flung). 

Happy Valentine’s Eve! May you spend it doing something you like well enough.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Time is Confusing

I was pretty sure that I was supposed to blog last night. But I was under the weather and didn't. In fact, I don't think I turned on my computer at all last evening after I got home.

Tonight, thinking that I was very behind, I pulled up my blog and realized that it said that I last posted "1 day ago" and I thought "I must have blogged late on Sunday, and it's just not rolled over to 2 days, yet."

So I looked more closely and saw that my last post was on 2/8/14.


Today is 2/11/14.

I'm not always the best at math in the evenings, but I'm thinking that 2/8/14 is more than one day ago.

Even with various meds in my system to help me with my under-the-weather-ed-ness, I can kind of tell that last Saturday is more than one day ago, since it is currently Tuesday.

Maybe the whole "relativity" thing is right, and time goes at different speeds based on whether or not you're treating a non-sinus-sinus infection. In which case I'll probably be blogging again in two days. Or yesterday. Whichever comes first.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Supply and Demand

I think we've discussed that I really like having fresh flowers in the house. It's a habit I picked up when I lived in Paris not quite half my life ago.

Last weekend, because we were having some people over, I picked up a combination of daisies and roses and put them around the house. Most of them are still looking pretty good.

Luckily, I went shopping last weekend, and not this weekend. While we were out running errands today I saw that one of the local flower shops had roses, which were $9.99 for 10 last week, now selling for $29.99.

Yes, I like flowers. Yes, I like Valentine's Day. No, I don't buy into buying flowers at outrageous prices just because it's Valentine's Day.

I'll be back to flower shopping in a couple of weeks, when the prices go back to normal and I'm buying them because I want them - not because some marketers want me to.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Unexpected Event

To some people, merely speaking in an elevator is an unexpected event.

When I walk out to the parking garage with people from my office, though, elevator conversation is just part of the trip.

Of course, when we're in the elevator with other people, sometimes that makes the other people wonder what's going on.

Recently, we had walked into the elevator and there were a bunch of other people in there already. There was a new sign on the wall next to the door which said "Due to an Unexpected Event the 3rd Avenue Elevator will be closed temporarily."

One of the guys in the elevator - not one of my co-workers - said "Makes you wonder what kind of unexpected event happened, doesn't it?"

I replied, "Yeah, like was it a surprise party that got out of hand?"

And the other guy actually laughed.

I kinda love unexpected events like that.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Sesame Sherlock

Some days, you just need to sit back and enjoy what comes at you.

In the midst of finding out about weird jaw infections and trying nasal steroids (which gave me a headache) and dealing with annoyingly cold weather, I stumbled across this, today.

And it made me happy, so I'm sharing it with you.


Sunday, February 2, 2014

Feeling Defeated

No. I really don't care about the SuperBowl, although I do watch enough of it to know what's going on. And, of course, I try to stay current on the commercials. (Some of which were very good this year.)

I'm feeling a bit defeated tonight because after 2.5 days of sudafed and ibuprofen and, actually, a decent amount of rest, I'm still not feeling well. In fact, I think I might feel worse tonight than I did on Friday when I left work early.

I've capitulated and agreed to go to Urgent Care first thing tomorrow morning, if I still don't feel well when I get up.

Sorry. It's not a really exciting blog post, but there you have it.