Friday, May 27, 2022

Embarrassment X 5

I thought I would share a few moments from my life that were not exactly my best days. All of these are things that embarrassed me and all were pretty much self inflicted. Except for number 3 and that was totally out of my control.

1. My kindergarten Christmas program was a night time production complete with costumes, sets music and spotlights. The teacher cast each student and I was terribly disappointed to be a toy soldier. I really wanted to be an angel or a doll. Nope I got to be a stinking toy soldier. 
The night of the performance came and I was ready with age appropriate stage makeup and my costume. The soldiers were all in line waiting to go onstage when I had to go to the restroom. One of the helpers (not my teacher) would not let me go and told me to just hold it. She must not have been terribly familiar with 5 year old bladders because after waiting an eternity to go one stage, and doing the "I gotta go " dance, holding it was no longer an option. We have a photo taken while we were on stage. All of the little drummer boys looks so cute, and then there is me with a tell tale wet leg. To this day I do not ever want to be on a stage and I intensely dislike the song "The Little Drummer Boy"

2.When I was in the first grade all girls had to wear dresses or skirts to school every day. Mom made all of my clothes and I went to school each day in a cute dress. Most of them were fitted to the waist, buttoned up in the back and had a sash that was tied in a bow. Though I did not wear a crinoline underneath it, I still wore a petticoat that fluffed the skirt out a little. 
As a kid I was a little bit of a tomboy and at recess I preferred to play tag or hide and go seek rather than playing jump rope. At least once a week during the game I would be running from whoever was it, when they would grab the skirt of my dress to "catch" me. Riiiiiiiip! The skirt would come apart from the bodice
and I would have to leave the playground to go to the office for a repair. I have no idea how many times during that year I finished the rest of the day with my dress held together by safety pins. It was the beginning of my lifetime as a fashionista__Not!
3. In the 4th grade my best friend's little brother had a birthday party on the local Bozo show.  She was too old to be on the show and I was there because my mother made me go with her, so she would not be the only older kid there. Sadly when I was in the 4th grade I was as tall as I am today, and even though we were the same age I was about 6 inches taller that her. As if that were not humiliating enough, Bozo picked me to be Butchie Boy. I had to march around the circus tent waving a stupid flag. Until that moment I had no idea Bozo was a sadist!
My only consolation was that the show was aimed at a very young audience and none of my school friends would see me. Except the next day in class the guy who sat next to me leaned over and said "Hey Butchie". Wouldn't you know he would have to have 2 younger sisters who watched it every day and that particular day he saw the opening march. If I could have disappeared into a crack in the floor I would have.

4. I was a good student in high school but sometimes I just would not do assigned reading on time, particularly if it was a book I was not interested in. One of my English teachers had particular sets of chapters to be read each week. My theory was why read it in sections when I could just read the entire book the weekend before the test. I read fast even as a teen and I would much rather cram read, especially if I did not like it. This particular book "Lord Jim" did not inspire any advance reading, and one day in class when the book should have been read, we had a pop test on the assigned chapters. Crap! Not only had I not read all the chapters I had not even bought the book, so my chances of bluffing were severely limited, especially since there was only one question__Describe the incident at Bangkok.
Where to begin? I spun a lovely incident report about an orderly running  down a pier with a man in a wheelchair, whom  he then dumped into the sea. The man was fished out of the drink by Thai sailors and he paid them handsomely (I remember using that word specifically __like that would help) to track down the orderly and bring him to justice. Lots of shenanigans  including 2 floozies and a mime on stilts happened before they caught the orderly finally bringing him before the now soaking wet man in the wheelchair. (In my invented novel the chapter ended there and justice was found in the next chapter)
The next day the teacher declared she had something to share with the class, and read what I had written. She was filled with praise for it and I was grinning from ear to ear, possibly even beaming thinking I had pulled a rabbit out of a hat.
Then she looked at me with a dead pan face asking what really good story telling would get you on a pop test. She held up the paper so everyone could see the grade_A Big Fat Red Zero! Not only did I flunk the quiz about as badly as one can flunk anything, but I got a big lesson in humility.

5. I am not by nature a very graceful person. I always have a bruise on my shoulder where I have run into something, and have been known to stumble over absolutely nothing. But usually, I manage to correct myself and do not fall.
Several years ago we were walking through the church parking lot after the service was over. I had on a new pair of shoes, and the pavement was slightly damp. A wet surface, new shoes, and my usual graceful walk was a recipe for disaster. Somehow or another, mid step, I managed to start to fall and for about 10 feet I was doing the windmill arm thing while trying to regain my balance. It proved to be an effort in futility and I proceeded to fall face first, sliding another 5 or so feet before stopping. One of our friends was in front of me and saw the entire thing, probably because I almost slid into him. 
To this day he occasionally reminds me of it, and of course I laugh at his first reaction. 
He squatted down a bit, put his hands together chest high with his elbows out, swung both arms straight out to the side and yelled "Safe". 
And you might ask what TheHub and sons who were walking with me did. Nothing__ after they saw I was not hurt they were too busy laughing their heads off to help.
My mother should have named me Grace.

Thursday, May 26, 2022

Hot Brown, Keto Style

TheHub had bought an over abundance of sliced turkey on one of his recreational Publix shopping trips. He loves turkey sandwiches, but he only eats them sometimes on the weekends, and that amount of turkey would ruin before he ate enough sandwiches to consume it all.  
When I was meal planning for the week I kept trying to come up with a plan to use it in a weeknight meal. No one can ever accuse me of linear thinking! I was watching a recap of the Preakness race, which made me think of the Kentucky Derby, which made me think of the one and only time we ever went to a horse race which was the Derby, which made me think of mint juleps, which made me think of our meals in Louisville, which made me think of  Derby foods, which made think of a Hot Brown. Which was a long and convoluted path to using deli turkey.

Turkey, shaved or sliced (amount is strictly up to your personal tastes )
Keto cheese sauce
Tomato slices (one per sandwich)
Bacon (one per sandwich)
Toasted bread (one slice per open faced sandwich)

Keto cheese sauce 
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup almond flour
1/3 cup cream
1 tablespoon water (more as needed)
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
salt (to taste)
pepper (to taste)
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon paprika

Melt the butter in a small saucepan and add the almond flour stirring to make a roux. Slowly stir in the cream and the water and cook over a low heat until the mixture is as smooth as an almond flour sauce can be (not like a regular flour sauce). Add the seasonings and the grated cheese bits at a timer , stirring constantly, until it is melted and smooth. I added a little more water because I wanted a looser sauce, but you do you and make it like you want. 

Meanwhile, warm the turkey (microwave is great for this) and put it on the toast. Follow with the cheese sauce, then the bacon slice, finishing with the tomato. 

And that is it for a really tasty, easy dinner. TheHub had two open face sandwiches with a side of coleslaw. Because I am doing keto I had just turkey, no bread, with the sauce, bacon and tomato, and a huge serving of slaw. It was delicious even without the toast.

Monday, May 23, 2022

Life and Plans

I plan a menu for the week, and then change my mind. Such is life!

What was planned:
1. veggie dinner, squash, okra, sliced tomatoes, cornbread
2. meatloaf, green beans, new potatoes (or none) coleslaw 
3. salad dinner 
4. grilled chicken, cucumber tomato onion salad, green beans, saffron rice
5. grilled hamburger patties  or steak, tossed salad
6. grilled tuna steaks, salad, dinner rolls, new potatoes
7. out to eat or takeout

What we really ate:
Monday: Day one and I went off plan.  TheHub did not want to have just a salad so a special shout out to Dunkin' Doughnuts for this inspiration.  
Grilled cheese with pesto and tomato, regular or keto bread, coleslaw

Tuesday: It was a do little day but I had thawed some frozen ground chuck.
Meatloaf, greek green beans, coleslaw

Wednesday: One of us wanted one thing and the other wanted some different. Variations on a theme of the same foods worked fine.
BLT's or a mixed greens salad with bacon, tomatoes and avocado 

Thursday: I stayed later volunteering than I meant to, then TheHub also came home late. 
Taziki’s takeout, Mediterranean salad (me) veggie gyro and pasta salad (TheHub)

Friday: Because we went out Thursday night for takeout, we decided to eat at home
Squash casserole, stewed okra tomatoes and onions

Saturday; Sometimes I don't handle frustration well (especially when it is avoidable) .
Instead of cooking I just threw something on the grill and called it done
Hamburger with all the fixings.

Sunday: Reorganizing the freezer equals a "found" meal.
Steak, mixed green salad

Potential meals for this week:
1. Veggie dinner with squash and other stuff (TBD)
2. Grilled tuna steaks, salad, new potatoes
3. Turkey sandwiches, possibly a Hot Brown with a side of coleslaw
4. Pork tacos, salsa, corn on the cob (or none) side salad
5.  Pizza in a bowl, mixed greens
6. Steak, potatoes (or none) tossed salad
7. Out to eat or take out

Saturday, May 21, 2022

Digging Dirt and Digging FaceTime

Wow, the 20th week of the year is over and I have not gotten a whole lot of my 2022 to do list done. I am easily distracted and right now things outside are distracting me badly. I guess it is because the weather has been stunning__hot, but beautiful, and the last two years were a bust for any meaningful yard work. We are paying for the past neglect in spades! (Both literally and figuratively)

Saturday: TheHub and I ran out and about during the morning, came home and grabbed a late lunch then headed back out for a while. We had several gardening chores to do but kept hearing thunder all around us, so we waited for a potential storm that never happened. Bummer! 
After waiting the non-existent storm out, we decided do a few things outside. Because I live in Alabama, that means going out and battling mosquitos, noseeums, and red ants while planting. Ick! The upside was that the container plants were thriving and we had our first harvest; a cherry tomato I ate in the yard, and the first yellow squash of the season. The raised bed plantings were doing very well, but they are still quite a way from being table ready 
One package of cucumber seed has done nothing, and the ground cherries are also not popping their heads through the soil. Maybe they will in time, but most likely not

Sunday: The day was another beautiful day and TheHub and I did a little running around before working in the yard. Actually he worked much harder than I did because he was the one digging the holes to plant hydrangeas.
Since the weather was so gorgeous, I decided to cook burgers on the grill, and they tasted just like summertime!
Pip Facetimed us. There is nothing I love more!

Monday: The weather was gorgeous again, but honestly we could have used some rain. The upside of a beautiful sunny day is that the clothes dry pretty quickly, even on a rack on the porch. I was still waiting for the dryer repair person to get back in touch with me when the part came in. I suppose I could have gone ahead and bought a new dryer, but I do not want one with a computer board and it seems they all come that way now. Mine is old and has manual settings which suits me fine. I am pretty basic and do not need any bells and whistles to dry my clothes.
I worked in the back yard a bit and things are looking better each day.
Pip did the FaceTime thing again and she and I decided that I would start writing a continuing story and would send her an installment every day.
That night what do you think I did? If you guessed I began to write a story about Pixies, you would be correct.

Tuesday: I sent Pip an early morning message (She is two hours behind me, so it was not early at all when I sent it) for her to read before school, saying after she got home I would send the first installment. I got a message back almost immediately asking me to send it anyway. She was froggy when I talked with her Monday, and evidently got worse as the night progressed. 
I sent it, she read it, and then we began a day of FaceTime visits. Son1 works from home and needed to work so I got to be her virtual babysitter. We drew the main characters of the story, Nina and LouLou (Pip got to pick the names) then she created a Pixie village out of cardboard boxed, stones and furniture she made from cardboard. She also made Pixie paper dolls to live in said village. I love a child's imagination and creativity.
We had so much interaction I had to take charging breaks for my phone 2 different times during the day. I got nothing done, but did the thing I love most!

Wednesday: Pip was still sick and at home, so we continued the story and FaceTime calls back and forth.
It was another beautiful day and I spent a ton of time on the porch, rocking and virtually visiting with my most favorite girl in the world. I am very thankful I have to flexibility to be there when she needs me, even if it is from afar.
In the early evening my favorite handyman came to look at several projects I have. I have hired .him when I need things done for over ten years. He does wonderful work, no matter what it is.

Thursday: This was my volunteer day at Independence Place. We concentrated on making lioness masks for their play. I am so lucky to be able to help them because it is one of my most favorite places with some of my favorite people. There is something so wonderful being around the participants and seeing them living their lives fully.
When I left I saw a message from Pip asking if we could include some magical creatures in the story I am writing for her. She had drawn a corgicorn she wanted incorporated into the story. That would be a corgi with a unicorn horn, just in case you were wondering. I guess I was mistaken for assuming  we already had magical creatures with the Pixies. But Thursday evening when I was writing the day's part of the story, LouLou had become the proud owner of a teeny, tiny pet corgicorn.

Friday: I stayed home all day because the repairman called to say he was coming with the part. Of course he did not come until late afternoon,  but that's ok because I have a working dryer. Woo hoo! 

Look for your joys no matter how small, because they are always out there.

May all your weeds be wildflowers,

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Tuesday 4

This week's 'Tuesday 4
is a hodgepodge of questions. 

1. Did you have a favorite cartoon program or character as a young person, or even today?
I loved Rocky and Bullwinkle and also The Bullwinkle show, though I did not ever see them as nighttime programs.  It was only when they were Saturday morning cartoons that I first watched them.  I guess sarcasm was my preferred language even as a kid. 
The best thing about Saturday morning was watching early cartoons while Mom and Dad slept (It was the only day of the week they were not up and at 'em). My sister and I would sit on the den floor, glued to the TV until they woke. I feel sorry for kids today who do not get the experience of that magical Saturday morning ritual.

2.  Can you whole heartedly give people a second chance or  do you find yourself still worried about trusting them?
I grew up with the best grudge holder in the entire world and I decided at a pretty young age that I did not want to live like that. It might take a bit more time than just hearing an apology, but after I mull it over a bit I am all about giving second chances.

3.  Are there things/activities you'd like to add to your life or do you feel have  enough to do, going on etc. to keep you satisfied?
I really would like to write more than I do, entertain more, laugh more, be around people I love more, travel more,
Like most Americans I should  get more exercise (anxiously waiting for the pool water to be ready for swimming) and I should keep house better than I do, but I find housework other than the necessities pretty boring.
But in all honesty I have a home, a husband who loves me in spite of how I am sometimes, good friends, great neighbors (mostly),  and I am pretty satisfied with my life.

4.  Can you live without your phone, TV, social media?  
I would love to be able to answer this with a huge yes, but I would be lying. I am not attached to my phone, in fact I often have no clue where in the house I left it. 
I am not a huge social media person  and only have a Facebook and Blogger account that I use. I do have an Instagram account that is only used when Son3 or Dil3 have a gig somewhere that is live streaming the performance through Instagram. It is the only reason I ever bothered to get one.
Facebook I use mainly to see pictures of my friends kids or grand kids. I don't read or care to read people's opinions about much of anything, so I don't. I guess the only things I ever read on FB are the articles Sean Dietrich writes, which are always shared by a couple of my friends.
Blogger? Well, I would not be writing this right now if not for the blogging social outlet. I have "met" some wonderful people through this medium and enjoy sharing bits and pieces of others lives through it, Occasionally though I get a little TMI!
TV?  Honestly TheHub and I watch it nearly every night. It is not used at all during the day, but after we eat we like to sit in the den and watch some episodic show. We just watched the final episode of Ozark, and will have to find another show to amuse ourselves. Any suggestions?

My favorite part of the Rocky and Bullwinkle show was always  Fractured Fairy Tales

Come on and play along!

Monday, May 16, 2022

It Was A Week Of Grand Galas, Not!

Well, summertime is here in all its hot, sunny glory. We have been working in the yard a lot lately and have not been really hungry in the evenings. Instead we are mostly thirsty and tired. 
I kind of liked having no plan this past week. I just looked through the freezer, found what I could make for dinner quickly and let it be what it was.  

What was planned for last week:
1. Tossed salad
2. No idea 
3. No idea
4. No idea
5. No idea
6. No idea
7. Take out or eat out

This is what really happened:
Monday: TheHub was not going to be home for dinner and there was no way I was cooking anything.
Tossed salad

Tuesday: I found a pack of frozen cooked cubed chicken in the refrigerator freezer and had a bell pepper that HAD to be used immediately.
Chicken cheesesteak, tossed salad, rolls or none

Wednesday: I found a bag of cooked, sliced pork tenderloin leftovers in the refrigerator freezer. Worked for me!
Pork tenderloin slices, green beans, tomato cucumber onion salad

Thursday: A bag of spaghetti sauce with cooked spaghetti noodles was lurking in the refrigerator freezer. It was just enough for one which worked well because I was not really hungry.
Spaghetti, salad (TheHub) tossed salad (me)

Friday: Date night!
The Electric, wedge for me, flatbreads for TheHub

Saturday: We both worked in the yard, were hot, sticky, itchy (mosquitos love me) and neither of us felt like cooking so instead we grabbed a rotisserie chicken from Publix.
Rotisserie chicken, coleslaw

Sunday: It was another hot sunny day working in the yard. Dinner was either going to be something thrown on the grill or blown off entirely.
Hamburger with all the fixings, (thank you Aldi for carrying keto buns), sautéed mushrooms

This is what may or may not happen:
1. veggie dinner, squash, okra, sliced tomatoes, cornbread
2. meatloaf, green beans, new potatoes (or none) coleslaw 
3. salad dinner 
4. grilled chicken, cucumber tomato onion salad, green beans, saffron rice
5. grilled hamburger patties  or steak, tossed salad
6. grilled tuna steaks, salad, dinner rolls, new potatoes
7. out to eat or takeout

Have a good week staying on plan, going off plan, or with no plan at all.

Saturday, May 14, 2022

Gorgeous Every Day

Once again the 19th week  of the year flew by, but this week it was filled only with sunshine, blue skies, and fluffy while clouds. Though we are experiencing summer, the temperature is still very bearable. I call it perfect weather that I plan on enjoying as long as it lasts!

Saturday: TheHub and I had a smaller than usual Saturday errand list, so we ate breakfast and headed out. After we got home I had to do some research and he had to do some work out of our home office. The day was beautiful and we enjoyed it. 

Sunday: It was Mother's Day here in the States and I woke to a potted azalea sitting on the breakfast table. TheHub wakes much earlier than I do, so I immediately knew he had been to Publix while I was still sleeping. The one closest to our house has a beautiful plant and flower department, which is where he buys all flowers I receive. It is not only his recreational shopping joint, but also his personal gift shop.
We watched Alabama's softball game on tv then headed outside for the annual pool opening.
Son2 came and helped, making it a much easier job (Greatest Mother's Day present!) After we got it uncovered and skimmed we started getting the upper patio summer ready. Again it was one of the greatest presents I could have gotten.

Monday: The day was gorgeous again and I started hanging out laundry on the rack because my appliance repair man has still been a no show.  
I was able to work in the back yard and got quite a few things planted and pots moved around so they were a little more aesthetically pleasing. I actually lost track of time while I was outside when I got a wonderful phone call from Sluggy! It was the hilight of my day!
Unfortunately while I was talking to her I kept feeling something biting me. It was only after I hung up that I realized I had disturbed a fire ant bed and had several crawling up the back of my shirt stinging me.I hate those things! I wonder why someone has not become an anteater wrangler and charge folks to have his/her critters come and feast .

Tuesday: My Beloved Sister and I went to Independence Place. It is the first time she had ever been, and the participants were as welcoming to her as they always are to me. Going there and helping is the best part of my week. 
Tuesday while we worked on the construction for the play, we got the zebra painted and began to make the birds. It looks like I am going to be going there nearly every Tuesday this summer and hopefully we can have all the stage sets and costumes done by then.
Son2 is extremely creative and tells everyone around that he gets his creativity from his father (the accountant).
Have I ever mentioned how sarcastic all three of my sons are?

Wednesday: This was another drop dead gorgeous day. Other than hanging out clothes to dry and a few routine chores, I mostly enjoyed rocking and reading on the back porch. 

Thursday: We had another gorgeous day. I had a good time outside digging in the dirt. When I was looking at the yellow squash I counted 11 in various stages of growth. The tomatoes were looking pretty healthy and the green bean vines were growing like crazy. Everything else was beginning to grow. ( I am also still planting) 

Friday: The repair guy finally called and came out to do a little dryer repair. The good thing about having an old dryer is that it has served us well for years. The bad thing__parts are not as available as ones for newer models. The dryer is fixable, but the part has to be ordered and most likely will not be in until Wednesday. It is mostly not a big deal because the clothes rack I have will hold about a load and a half, but I really do need to wash my sheets, coverlet and mattress pad. I probably just need to bite the bullet and go to the laundromat.
It was date night and TheHub and I went to the Electric. I think it is becoming  our go-to spot for a casual dinner..  After we ate we dropped by Home Depot to gather a few needed supplies for our Saturday gardening needs. It was a joy to miss the Saturday morning crowds there!

Have a great week and look for your joys, not matter how small. They are always out there!

May all your weeds be wildflowers,