Sometimes Timing is anything but Good...

As I was posting that wonderful "Santa Baby" rendition... well, read here



Thru The Day

It will be a long day for me, since no family is here and just peeking out of the door reveals ice at least an inch thick on the sidewalk leading to where my car used to be (and will stay 'used to be' unless Santa sends me a big bank account...!). So, even if I get an invitation or two, there is not a Christmas prayer in the world that would entice me to go anywhere that requires stepping on any sidewalk or street today. Well, maybe if the house were on fire, but not much else....

At least I will have turkey today... I froze the Thanksgiving bird while it still had a bunch of 'leftovers' on it, and I will pick at it starting this afternoon and when I'm done I'll put the leftover-leftovers into the crockpot for soup tomorrow. If I had a pressure cooker, I would also pressurize the bones into mush and give 'the girls' a treat. Yes, you CAN give pets poultry bones if you do this... the only real threat is the sharp bones that pet crunching creates - pressure-cooking (and running it thru a sieve) eliminates that. There - that's my gift to pet- and pressurecooker-owning poultry-eaters in this recessive time! (you might want to put aside a quarter-cupful of unsalted juice to put into it... the fat is ok (they would have eaten it 'in the wild') in moderation, but the salt is not.)

Checking the cupboard...I also have some canned jellied cranberry sauce left from when I almost depleted it making cranberry juice for my UTI. (I will NEVER quit trying to say IUD, although I *know* the difference very well!!...I have to stop and make sure I say it right EVERY time...) BTW, where did all the whole-berry cranberry sauce go? I searched all over my small town on T'giving to no avail, not even our big-box store had anything but the jellied kind, which seems to me to be something I should be spreading on bread. Is it scarce everywhere, or just here?

I also have some lettuce, so a salad is available for my feast, and also one of the potatoes I nuked yesterday.

It's not going to snow today - just freeze - so I won't be enjoying a white Christmas except for the leftover snow, which I guess is par for this Christmas course.

For those who know me well, they'd agree this would be my favorite turkey leftover....

Found this amazing news video and had to share it...put up with the ad and enjoy the story!


Potpourri - Part 2

I've been busy most of the day dropping Entre cards and looking for humor online -- I really need some giggles. For the third (and hopefully final) time this year, I had to have my car towed. It was 12F outside, no one had told me the 'geezer bingo/lunch' had been canceled and I was way too far into the street with a car that had just **stopped.** The last time this happened, it was the distributor. This time I suspect the fuel pump, if only because when I tried to start the thing it would occasionally let out a 'foof' sound. Very 'airy,' like a Hondafart...

So there I am, in a towtruck, with the poor sweet driver trying to back my towed car into a slot on a patch of unpaved lot which is covered with between 1" and 2" of ice. He finally hiked to the garage office to ask if he could park it out in the open, since it kept jackknifing all around the lot as he tried to back it in. This gave me my first grin of the day -- The driver is one of those guys who have a bit of tummy overhang in front, so his jeans tended to droop a bit, giving him a 'plumber's crack' about 6" long. To his credit he did try to pull them up now and again as he literally skated the 100 feet or so to the office/garage building, but mostly he had to use his arms for balance. It was too much to hope for that he would lose them completely, but very Chaplinesque, nonetheless.

I really shouldn't giggle too hard; he was sweet enough to drive me home rather than have the folks at Corky's do so - he didn't want me on the ice at ALL, even to walk to the shop office. Nice guy considering he'd had dozens of towing calls since last night, and the general area had, by then, chalked up 37 semi's jackknifed or otherwise broken down over a 10 mile radius. A shout-out to Joe's Towing...
On a lighter note, I found this:

Bear convicted for theft of honey

By Paddy Clark - BBC News

The taste of honey was just too tempting for a bear in Macedonia, which repeatedly raided a beekeeper's hives. Now it has a criminal record after a court found it guilty
of theft and criminal damage.

Because the animal had no owner and belonged to a protected species, the court ordered the state to pay for the damage to the hives - around $3,500 (£1,750; 2,238 euros). The bear, meanwhile, remains at large - somewhere in Macedonia.
I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas tomorrow, and best wishes for whatever holiday you celebrate! I will be reading a book, playing with polymer clay, and wishing I had a car to go get something with which to make hot buttered rum.


Potpourri, or "Out of my Mind"

I really don't like blogs that inflict music unasked, but I suggest you play this one - it is a really neat version of one of my favorite 'seasonal' songs:

This woman is a national treasure. The spin she puts on this satire of conspicuous holiday consumption is just precious! (For those under 40, it's Eartha Kitt... a fantastic entertainer who was born WAY too early!)
I don't wish anyone harm, but this elicited a snort:
(AP) Some health department workers in southern Illinois think they may have discovered some contaminated food -- at their own office Christmas gathering. After the Lawrence County Health Department had a buffet for 72 people at a restaurant last week, 42 of the attendees suffered stomach problems, including the head of the department.
Scrooge in action: http://dailycontributor.com/200812222445/goodbye-snowzilla/
From the "Let's just rephrase it" department:

I like words...I've mentioned that before. I have a good 'feel' for using the proper one, but there is a word that just flummoxes me - 'wake' and all its permutations. I did a google search under 'grammar' to see if there is a definitive rule for 'wake,' 'awaken,' etc. All I can say after doing so is 'sheesh!'
See http://www.editpros.com/news0207.html#COACH question #2 for an example of the 'gee, thanks' kind of help I got for my effort.

More later, probably. I'm always wishing I'd added something, so maybe I will.


Stop That Drumming!!

I like the holiday season...I don't have much responsibility since my family is not in the area - just the love and good wishes to and from my precious friends is all I need to make my season bright. I even get to humming carols, although it takes a bit of prompting from radio or TV.

One carol I try to avoid every season is "The Little Drummer Boy." Supposedly a song of rejoicing, it sounds more like a funeral dirge. I really don't mean to offend anyone, but while the lyrics are just fine, the drag-ass melody is anything but joyous. If anyone can point me to a peppier version, I'd really appreciate it. I'll still turn off the draggier renditions, though, and look for 'Jingle Bell Rock' or even 'It Came Upon a Midnight Clear.'


Back from MD... well, yesterday. It seems I'm in fairly decent health for the health I'm in. Too fat, blood pressure a bit elevated (with HBP med) but within limits, blood glucose wavering but still within acceptable limits, a couple of other things (mostly maintenance) dealt with.

But in one of those 'oh, by the way' moments, I mentioned a spot on my upper arm that a friend insisted that I address the next time I saw my doctor. She looked at it, and said it looked like a precursor to, or possibly early basal cell skin cancer. She used liquid nitrogen on it, and we will watch it closely. She also called my friend a very wise friend, indeed. Absolutely, and with all the other things she has on her plate, Jael could possibly be a lifesaver, too. Hugs, lady!


Playing Catch-up

I'm one of those folks who can go without sleep for a time, but who has to get it back eventually. Between some looming projects and the mild-but-annoying illnesses I've had one on top of the other, I've either not been to bed or just stared at the ceiling when I did. That seems to be over, but my brain seems a bit slower to awaken than my ambition.

What I *have* been doing is catching up on mindless stuff, like watching the full series "Six Feet Under" (probably mostly because I'm glad I'm not), and playing russian roulette with SurfTheChannel.com's collection of Alfred Hitchcock TV shows... none have titles, just "???" ... while making fridge magnets for 30 people. Today is an 'on the road' MD appt. (she's 15 miles from the town I'm in), then the rest of the week is MINE!!!



No comments today... I'm 'recovering' from a lesson well-learned - that of erring on the side of caution when eating something your body isn't accustomed to.

In my case it was merely some (and I use the term loosely, so to speak) large, semi-cooked veggies - carrots, zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower - and they were so good I ate the whole bagful (8 lbs) over the course of two days. It was then that my 'nether reagions' rebelled with severe cramps and two sleepless nights.

I guess if I want to go on a vegetarian diet I'd better sneak up on it with a tad less enthusiasm. In the meantime, I think that notorious 'old corn flake' of the early morning infomercials is long gone.


Have Hatchet, will Travel...

I'm feeling mighty mighty today...

In the 90's I moved from Northern California to Arizona to help someone in time of need... I got there just as a new governor was being voted in. Within a couple of years he was indicted for fraud.

I eventually moved back to California, then when I got disillusioned with the Deukmejian-sterilized version of my home state, I moved to Illinois, just in time for a new governor to be elected (in a very close race). A couple of years later, he was indicted for malfeasance of various kinds. A new governor was voted in.

Today that governor was arrested by the Feds and charged with various felonies having to do with using his office/power in a corrupt way. Yesterday he was quoted as saying in a press conference:""I don't believe there's any cloud that hangs over me, I think there's nothing but sunshine hanging over me."

I guess I'd better dig up my hatchet again... Anyone want to get rid of a governor? My mere presence seems to do the trick. I ask only moving expenses and at least one year's worth of rent/utilities....


TRADER JOE'S - Frustration R Us....

I love Trader Joe's. It's a fun friendly store, and the items they offer are really quality stuff. Some things I just can't find anywhere else, like the 'clear' (as opposed to tomato-drenched) salsa. Likewise 'two buck Chuck' (actually three bucks in our state), a very drinkable wine. Go here for an article about TJ's...

What I *don't* love is the fact that they are continually opening new stores, including new ones in Illinois, and THEY ARE ALL IN UPSTATE ILLINOIS!!!!! Am I shouting? In the words of Sarah Palin, "Ya'betcha!!!"

I once wrote to them, asking if they were going to open a store in central or downstate Illinois. After all, this is a long state, and even our state capital is more down-state than central. What's more, east-central is home to the University of Illinois @ Champaign-Urbana, a favored area of many, many 'most desired' lists. Students and staff come to the U. of I. from all areas, and many - if not most - are familiar with TJ's from their own home areas.

The reply I got was very annoying - they pretty much inferred that they were very selective in choosing what areas TJ's is located. It sounded to me that they were saying all but the greater Chicago area was undesireable. If it were any store but TJ's I'd mumble a few expletives and forget I'd ever heard of them, but TJ's really is special. Here is their own map of how they cluster the 11 or so stores in Illinois. (If you're unfamiliar with Illinois locale, just look at the Great Lakes... Illinois is that kinda 'flaccid' state at the lower left. Use the focus tool in upper left hand side of the map to pull back the mapview - move it closer to the '-' range to see dramatically how close the clusters are.)

If it weren't so bloody hard to organize pretty much anything, I'd help stage a march or something, but if someone could suggest an alternative, I'm listening...


In Other Words...

I love words. I love trying to find just the right word to fit the idea or emotion I'm trying to convey. One word, though, stops me in my tracks every time.

How does one define "thrill"? There are a lot of words that are hard to define, but pretty much everyone knows the concept... love, hate, and my absolute favorite 'defining-itself word, "uptight." But what is thrill? It's a silly word on the face of it, sounding vaguely like a sound, or perhaps one of those 'group of'' terms, akin to 'a pride of lions' or 'an exultation of larks'...

But it's not. It is a positive word, I guess... I haven't heard it used negatively unless it refers obliquely to the results of an action, such as "Dexter gets a thrill out of imposing justice on the deserving," Or "the thrill of the roller-coaster ride caused cardiac arrest"...

It does seem to be a real thing, though... one of those things that is unseen but felt. We can't 'see' pain, but we can feel it. Likewise 'love.' It's a tangible. But 'thrill' seems to wander around one's mind, meaning different things to each of us.

So the next time you're tempted to use it to describe a feeling or reaction, think about what you are really saying, and smile.


Looking for FORMER fabric painting artists...let's make a deal!

I know you're out there... those artists who decided to try fabric painting and bought all those supplies and paints just to decide it wasn't worth your time or money. You put the stuff away, not wanting to throw out all that paint that represented all that money. Worse, was there a little devil in the back of your mind that whispered that tossing it would admit failure? Read on...

I've found that the raised dimensional fabric paints (as opposed to the ones that apply flat to the fabric surface) are a wonderful tool in making my polymer clay beads and jewelry. However, frequent readers of my blog know that I can't afford a pack of gum without major massage of my budget. So for anyone who has multiple bottles of the medium hanging around, let's make a deal... let me know by email what you have (and it must have the kind of nozzle shown--the brand is immaterial); I will swap beads /pendant /whatever. Of course I'll pay postage! I'm a great fan of bartering and this seems to be a great opportunity to do it. Or if you know someone who might be interested, share this URL with them?

As to color...since all I have right now is green and orange, ANY color would be welcome!


Crock-pot Redux...

It seems that the fates felt sorry for me and my crockpot plight... I was getting my monthly groceries at 'that big-box store' and went over to the appliance dept to see how much it was going to cost me to replace the cooker I murdered. I remembered that the last one was over $30 and figured that they'd gone up a bit...or worse, that the model/size was discontinued.

Ah, but there it was... the same size, same model, brushed stainless...and on sale for $25! On my miniscule budget, that means someone(s) else is going to get short-changed unless I sell some items this month, but that pot was so much a part of my way of doing things, I would have to change a large part of my 'routine' to deal with its absence. Since the crockery insert from the old one fits the new one, it means that I can 'bulk cook' two large items the same day instead of having to plan two days...hooray! Have I rationalized this expenditure enough? [snort!]

If it sounds like all I do is cook - there is nothing further from the truth. I don't like it all that much, which is why I usually devote a full day or two to doing mammoth batches of whatever, then splitting them into servings and bagging them for freezing. Economical and good for portion control, which I desperately need... [grin!]

REDUX UPDATE: Murphy's law... I crowed too much... the new pot is, I guess you could say, 'a quart short.' It's otherwise identical, and the size of the box fooled me...the space was taken up with that fun foam stuff. That means I can't use both crockery inserts in the new one, but I can still use the old, larger one to store the cooked stuff from the new one in the fridge and carry on cooking. Usually I have size info with me when I go to shop for something, but this was a grocery trip. Dang. Oh, well!


Please Please Please....

I went to my usual Monday geezer bingo/lunch this morning, and just as lunch was starting, one of the more irritating regulars came in sniffling and coughing and snorting and sneezing. It's ironic that this particular person NEVER donates to the meal ($3 suggested donation, but they can't turn anyone away who doesn't pay because they get federal funds), yet she is just ever so happy to share her damn germs.

Please, folks - one of the greatest gifts you can give anyone is a free one...avoid going out when you have a cold or the flu. While your presence would be missed, it wouldn't be nearly as appreciated as your thoughtfulness in NOT giving everyone your cold or flu bug. Trust me on this!