Nov 26, 2014

List of Minor Complaints

1. When your socks fall down inside your boots and bunch up on your feet.
2. Wind-shield wipers that only wipe a few stripes of clean.
3. Empty wiper fluid with salty roads means you have to get out and throw snowballs on your own wind-shield every stop.
4. Chapped lips.
5. Iced car door.
6. Snow in the sleeve.
7. Fogged up glasses

Nov 25, 2014

The Day After

I sat up late last night, like too many nights in my life, watching things burn on the television.  Switching between CNN and Fox News and C-Span, tabs open to Twitter, Livestream and Facebook, wondering if the chaos would come to our front door.  I remembered a time when we were at work, with radios on in offices, and televisions on in the break rooms, and loved ones on the phones, watching things crumble and trying to find out if everyone was accounted for.  This is how we are trained to find the truth now.  A press conference, and then we stick news channels in every orifice, and watch the live feed waiting for the anchor to confirm the the flames in front of our eyes.  

In the quiet morning over coffee, I look out to make sure the world is there and sit down to read what headlines were crafted while I dreamed away the smoke. We go on to work and school and sorting socks, the chaos at bay far beyond side-walks that need to be shovelled. We type thoughts out into the communal water cooler of the internet, and eagerly read through the sides of our eyes others' posts, all the while thinking carefully about the world.  We will talk about, how to talk about, how to talk about, how to talk about, why we stayed up late watching things burn, to our children.




***

Michael Whyte  · Rockford, IL · "Playing 'the race card'?" Dude, it's America. The "race card" is always in play. You're talking about a country that only exists because of the genocide of the indigenous people; that only thrived due to the slave labor of what was seen as an inferior race. This isn't ancient history.The Voting Rights Act happened IN MY LIFETIME, not in some distant antiquity. A black president is elected and America pats itself on the back for being able to count votes, pats itself on the back for being "post-racial," while a huge (HUGE!) segment of the white population very publicly loses its f'ing mind...even before the guy takes office. In the meantime, our worthless "liberal media" foments racial divide, the Congress treats the president with less respect than they treat the janitor, but no one is supposed to play "the race card" and we're all supposed to pretend to be be "color blind." What is happening in Ferguson, Missouri isn't about the killing of one young man. It's about what goes on when the cameras are off. It's about what goes on when the TV networks don't have a story to sensationalize. You don't know. You like to think you do, but you don't. That's what's on my mind, Facebook."

Nov 22, 2014

Dishes that take Days

Since it got cold I've been turning on the oven/stove more often. The usual banana breads and muffins and brownies are turning out good. I love a great soup, one you can simmer all day. It gives some humidity to the house and anticipation to your belly. Last week I made an unintended huge pot of chicken soup and had too many leftovers and not enough lefteaters. On Monday I got a request for mashed potatoes and suddenly something that hadn't occurred to me in in all my years of cooking and loving soups fell from the heavens and onto our plates.

Displaying IMG_8207.JPG
Mad Gravy

I took left over chicken soup and made it into gravy. 

Some of you just read that and said "duh" and others of you gasped in amazement. I would've been on the gasping side had I just read that elsewhere a week ago.  So, I put potatoes in a pot and a container of soup in a pan.  I added flour and cornstarch a little at a time to the soup and by the time the mashed potatoes  were finished the soup was thick.  It was so good I was mad.  Mad that I had missed the opportunity to make this for the last twenty years but didn't.  Mad that nobody I knew made this. Mad that I couldn't fit more than two plates of it in my belly. 




It seems like all of my favorite foods involve multiple days of cooking and left overs.

Left over chilli = chilli mac, chilli cheese dogs, chilli cheese fries. 

Left over mashed potatoes = potato pancakes, twice baked potatoes, shepherds pie

Stale bread = bread crumbs for everything, bread pudding, great French toast. 

Left over whipped cream = on cereal, in coffee, folded into fruit and yogurt. 

Left over pancakes = jelly rolls, pb&js

Left over Asparagus = fancy omelettes

Left over fried rice = fried rice omelettes

Left over mostaccioli = baked pasta

Left over soup = Mad Gravy, pot pies

Nov 16, 2014

Let me Share the Awful.

Last summer I broke my leg.  On the eighth day of having a broken leg I got the flu.  I don't mean lay in bed with body aches flu, I mean jump up and run to the bathroom so your body can turn itself inside out flu. But I had to do that with a broken leg and I wasn't very good at crutches yet and every time I moved my leg fast it hurt. I had it for two days.  Every cell in my body was taxed so hard that on the third day even though I felt better all I could do was lay in bed and have Gatoraide brought to me.  Then, my body hurt from being in bed for so long and I had to flip over every few hours to keep from cramping up into a giant knot of hurt.  Flipping over is hard when you have a broken ankle and no reserves.

That's the whole story.  I got better and my ankle healed and there really isn't any point to this story other than it sucked, a lot and I was sitting here eating toast this morning and thinking "That was awful!" and then I decided to type it out and share the worst out here on the internet, where I will read back one day and agree... yep that was indeed awful. The End.

Nov 10, 2014

Rediscovering What's Good

I was trying to describe how loud my house is at any given time in the day to a friend today.  He is young and single.  In my home, about every five minutes someone beckons "Mom!, mom! mom, mom....MOM!" Overlay that with what feels like a continuous soundtrack of Adventure Time or Sponge Bob from the television and whatever You Tube thing is streaming from several personal devices hung from my children's faces and lace it with NPR droning away in the kitchen and the retired neighbour obsessed with leaf blowing and mowing. Throw in the stomping of little feet and laughter and fighting and whining and every five minutes "Mom!, mom! mom, mom....MOM!" and you almost have it.

In the last two days, since the weather cooled down, the kids have rediscovered the forsaken third floor playroom in our home.  Every toy they haven't seen since last spring seems brand new and they're enjoying avoiding the in turn response to "Mom!, mom! mom, mom....MOM!" which is "Did you get your homework done?" "Haven't you watched enough ipad?" and "Who's socks are these?"  Occasionally they sneak down the stairs and into the kitchen for juice boxes and pre-wrapped food to leave on the carpet. (Which reminds me: Ella told me the other day she doesn't like 'crumbly things for breakfast' any more, I have no comment about that I just wanted to note it)

So the last few evenings have been extremely quiet for me.  It's unnerving, having gone from constant noise to just an occasional rumble from the third floor. I feel like I forgot something important.  I keep looking around to see if I left the stove on and walking up to the playroom to peer around the corner at my busy children.  Even now, I have this uninterrupted time to type my thoughts and I keep stopping every few minutes and looking around to see if someone need me to wipe or pour something. I think I'll put the TV on for some noise.

Cue the neighbour's leaf blower.

Nov 8, 2014

Correctamundo Kid

Jack liked Halloween because "You can catch some candy and yum it down."