Thursday, January 18, 2018

Trivial Mysteries plus Anxiety and Attention

Today's body mystery: why am I feeling light headed? I ate something recently so it shouldn't be blood sugar. I don't have sinus pressure. Such a wondrous complexity is a body!

Yesterday's object mystery: where did K's last antibiotic pill go? She took the one on the day before and there should have been one more oblong white pill in a white blister square. But it wasn't in the box on the dining table where we'd seen them last. I expect to find it in a corner of the room in three months' time. I hope missing the last of a Z-pack doesn't impact her health or cause a spike in antibiotic resistant bacteria. Shrug.

K had flu last week and got the whole nasty thing: aches, cough with piercing sore throat, fever and chills. She got past the fever part but was still waking us up with coughing at night and looked weak. Took her to the doc and got the Z-pack and codeine cough syrup and she brightened up quickly.

Object mystery, part II: Oh! I have another object mystery and this one's really getting my goat because I could have prevented it: where is my other cubic zirconia earring?! I just bought these in ABQ in a fit of sparkly self indulgence. They're not super expensive but at least $20 at Target and now I'm reduced to wearing just one, piratically. I wore them to the movies and remember getting home and verifying that they were both in my ears. The right one had the wire partway out and I thought, I'll have to watch that. I am so regretting not taking them off that instant. I cooked several things and then realized I was down to one. Couldn't find it in kitchen/dining room. Did it fall in the trash? Come to me, o tiny sparkly thing!

Our post-Christmas messiness continues apace and it's hard to find anything. This is so much better than it was when the kids were little. They mostly keep their stuff in their rooms and we do more regular pick ups. But I'm ready for a wave of spring cleaning.

Deep freeze anxiety
I'm tired of making sure that the hall bathroom sink is dripping and worrying about whether the pipes will freeze. We had the worst day on Tuesday when it was so cold in the evening that I couldn't be comfortable anywhere in the house except in bed with covers on. We were all walking around grumbling and cursing softly, like cats that got wet by accident. It's better now and supposed to keep warming. Come here, you extra degrees.

Attention paid
Went to the Future Cities parent night last night. Got to watch our 8th grader and her friends present their project and talk about the cool technology and quality of life they designed. All the teams were a little heavy on the devices that monitor citizens' health and wellness in order to intervene if necessary. The theme was helping elderly population life a good quality life but I guess I need to mention it to my daughter that medical/government/social worker monitoring might not be the way everyone wants to live. Her group is the oldest and they were great and all I can do is fan.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018


Image from here.

Time to start afresh. Or at least start, I don't know that I'm all the way to fresh.

NM was wonderful. Teen and I hiked the Pino trail which goes up and up through scrub, pinons, ponderosas and more. I finally realized when we turned around, due to my getting light headed at altitude, that this parade of pines was not a coincidence - the trail is named for them after all. I had seen the trail on the map and the more than 2500' of ascent and laughed. But it is not straight up and we had a wonderful time going up for about an hour and 45 min. Faster coming down!

Then I found a contrasting hike for the next day: Kasha Katuwe, Tent Rocks. Some place I'd never been and it was a beautiful adventure through the tufa slot canyon. It's all water and wind eroded like a tiny Grand Canyon.

Good to spend some time with my mom and not feel rushed. We got some of her chores done but the curtain hardware defeated us. I met her neighbor who does a lot for her. I'm humbled by the way they watch out for my mother. It would be good to be closer. I think.

Saw a friend and we had a very nice talk. I regret running away after we'd finished our tea. I should have ordered an eclair to go to justify the table. But good to see AT for a quick reunion at least. She's such a graceful woman as she moves through this world.

Friday, December 29, 2017

Hinge of the year

Go out in style
All righty 2017, I've read almost all of Tom and Lorenzo's Best and Worst fashion of the year posts. And then I'll be done with you. You can shuffle off, shoo, be gone.

If you want a laugh take a look at Topeka's forecast for the new year. Hideous! Here's the National Weather Service's icon for what's coming:
Sunday: Mostly sunny and cold, with a high near 6. North wind around 10 mph.

And yet we don't have 54 inches of snow so there's always someone who has it worse. I'm feeling quite pleased to be headed to Albuquerque on the first for a week of 50 degree highs.

Feast day
Our tree was more surrounded with boxes and bags on xmas morning than I had expected. We had a good time opening and it was the Sweatshirt Noel for three out of the five of us. MIL flew up for the holiday and was sweet and easy to please as usual. She is the most Pollyanna person I've ever known. I did have to hide my eye roll when I asked her to help peel potatoes for the holiday meal. She picked up the first one and examined it gently, "This is a lovely potato." I realize now that I should have asked her what features she noticed that made it exceptionally lovely. That one particular brown, lumpy potato. But at the time I just wanted to gnash my teeth. 

The rib roast cost $27 dollars before tax and was worth it. I did the slow roast technique from J.O.C. and got it done to a beautiful medium rare.

Look ahead
Amend is my one word resolution. Let's make something better out of this mess. I will try.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Floating world

Better now
I forgot to mention in the last post that I went ahead and had a tantrum after knocking the tree over twice on Monday night. Not proud of myself. Last night I had a cooler head and Nod managed to get the blessed four-point holder to work. Our tree is a little wonky but stable which is miles better than straight as a die and tippy. It's lighted now and ready for baubles.

Blue flash
A blue jay has been hopping in trees near the office today with a very conversational call. Like ka-ka-ka-ka-ka-keh but not screechy like jays usually are. Very cute, good birb. Here's a page with a lot of appreciative blue jay info  including this good description of that call:
"Frequently heard in the autumn gathers is a chuckling, conversational kuk. This note differs widely in its mode of delivery. It may be extended into a bubbling chatter--a sort of twittering laugh--or, ranging up and down in pitch, it may run off into pretty, rambling phrases. The voice is not loud, and we have to be near the bird to appreciate the charm of the phrasing." 
I now have a crush on author Arthur Bent as well as my handsome jay.

What day is it 
At work this week every day feels like Friday but is not Friday, a little Limbo of a week. Slightly disappointing but could be worse. There are fewer of us around every day and the holiday is gathering it's strength to pounce. I've made one deadline and have worked much harder than I expected to so far.

Soothing Brits
I have gotten discs from the library and am enjoying New Tricks. (I keep wanting to call it Old Dogs.) It's the tv equivalent of a police-procedural-cosy mystery. Not as twee as many run on PBS but similarly light on the gore and grim. Good word play and good leads. I tried one ep of Broadchurch and it made me cry over a child murder and that was enough.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Jingle it

Happy holidays to all. I knocked over this tree twice last night trying to add lights. That @#*$& four point tree stand is of limited use. I may go get a galvanized bucket and some rocks.

A bad motto would be: Stay awake for the holidays!

My gingerbread cookies were dangerously delicious. Good thing we've eaten or given away all of them. Next batch in time for my mother-in-law to hit town on Saturday. I may do another couple of pies just to prove to the pie crust that I have its number. Still haven't decided on a holiday meat idea. I think I'm turkeyed out but I haven't come up with an alternative yet.

I'm making more of these because I can give some away and we can eat the rest of themyomyumyom.

I love the colors of twilight at this time of year. I just wish that light would last longer. Remember to breathe. Watch for stars and angels.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017


Some findings from here and there about the internet, pasted on a page.  


The universe is indifferent. We have the choice to not be.

The above paraphrased from


From mimismartypants on Twitter: Holy SHIT this is funky. #NowPlaying "Holy Ghost" by The Bar-Kays .


A lovely list from the recent Metafilter discussion of recommended food blogs. 

Suggested blogs:
Minimalist Baker  fab photos   Smitten-ish  looked at this, v. nice  J Pepin! Me, My Food, and I  canning and preserving mostly
Cookie and Kate
Love and Lemons  newsy  newsy


A set of four fragrances from Demeter:  Candy Cane Truffle (mint and chocolate), Gingerbread (sexy spicy), Mistletoe (unisex evergreen), Christmas in New York (egg nog, apples, spices, chestnuts). I'm greedy for the foursome but maybe all I really need is Frasier Fir. Or some Molasses?

Thursday, November 30, 2017

November ender

I cooked all the things. I only cried over pie crust once. Joy of Cooking got me back on track with technique notes. In the end I made two kickass pies: chocolate with meringue and pumpkin. The turkey was spatchcocked and roasted nicely. Our lone guest brought oyster dressing and cranberry sauce, both were stars. We watched Some Like It Hot for very funny afters.

Reconnected and it feels so good
After a couple of weeks without broadcast tv I made the new antenna work last night. Of course there wasn't anything on but I did enjoy seeing a variety of local weather monkeys. And it just feels good to have the option once again. Something to fold laundry in front of.

Did you know that everything in the world is happening on Saturday, December 2? Well, it is in my world anyway. To oblige my oldest I will be judging one or two rounds of debate at her high school at 8am that morning. Then I'll be traveling 45 minutes away to watch my youngest in the honor band. Nod has agreed to judge his own rounds of debate. We'll all miss the horse-drawn wagon xmas parade. K will be working at her restaurant job that day and may have to find a ride home.

After L finishes with band we have to skibble home in time for her Christmas voice recital which starts at 5:30. Then we abandon that kid and go to a local hotel with the oldest again for her birthday pool sleepover bonanza. Pizza and cable tv are our parental rewards in the room next door. I guess I should take bets as to whether we are woken by the girls next door and/or get hotel complaints. I am going to be so happy to make it to Sunday.

Edited to add that Nod's car ceased to have a working transmission on Tuesday. So we're going to do all of this with one car somehow. Hoo.

We watched The Fantastic Mr. Fox again this week. It was delightful. I had forgotten bunches of it. I did notice that I once again felt sad that they ended up in the supermarket at the end. I wanted them to be in the fields and forest. Such is life for urbanized wild animals I suppose.