Happy (?) New Year


Here’s hoping this year will be so much better than last one.  At least the last month of last one.  I really want to get back in my kitchen and cook something.  I know I can’t smell anything, but still I can remember the smells of the things I usually cook, and really miss that pot of beans and the Mexican cornbread that always go with it.  Mmmm, what more can a person ask for than beans and cornbread on a cold, winter day?

I have a new award, sorta.  Since a picture is worth a thousand words, here it is. doncharisma-org-not-on-freshly-pressed-award-4-300x300 doncharisma-org-not-on-freshly-pressed-award-3-300x300I haven’t decided which one to put in my gallery yet, but I think it will be the one with the picture of the presenter, Don Charisma.  Of course, the other one shows up better, but I’ll decide before my next post.  Don is really a great guy, currently living in Thailand, who is now doing great things with stitching photos together to make up really large, breathtaking scenery.  He’s funny, intelligent, and altogether a great guy who created my angel logo for me.  My knight in mostly shining armor.  You really should check out his blog, http://doncharisma.org.  At least I think that’s it.  If not, so sorry Don.  Sinus headache, remember?

Since I can’t go shopping at this time, I have started online shopping at Amazon.  I think I went a bit overboard on a few things there, but since you don’t actually see the product, just a description, you don’t know until it arrives. 004 Just a few days ago I got a call from the office telling me I had a large package downstairs.  Large?  It was about the size of a coffin.  It is still taking up half my living room.  As you can see, I ordered paper towels, also 007 well, that’s more like a photo of the box with the towels at the top.  So, here’s another one.005 A dozen packages of paper plates, and a huge bag of paper bowls.  Since I can’t wash dishes at the moment, I use a lot of paper products.  And last, 006 a dozen boxes of Kleenex, although I only pulled one out because I only needed one opened at the time.  Fortunately there was no shipping fee, since the order was more than $50.  The trash bags and Windex are still to come, and naturally they are the items I needed the most.  Except for the Kleenex, since I somehow caught a head cold without ever leaving the building.  How?  Your guess is as good as mine.  I think if there is half of an allergen floating around the hemisphere it makes it to my nose and takes up residence there.

I’ve pretty much slept thru the past few days.  It’s just too comfortable under the covers to move lately, and I have a lot of lost sleep to make up.  Throw a couple of pain pills a day into the mix, and I’m snoring like, well, a lumberjack?  Or maybe more like Max did.  For such a tiny dog he could beat my dad when it came to snoring.

Well, back to the sinus meds.  Doctor appointment on Friday for results of CAT scan.  To tell the truth, I’m not sure I really want to know.

A.

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The Herd Mentality


100_2396 Well, couldn’ zactly find mah self a picture of a herd of cattle, so ah thought ah wuld show this picture of a herd of fish here at the old folks home.  Ya jist walk up ta the pond an’ they all come swimmin’ over ta see if’n yer gonna feed ’em.

It was kinda like that t’other day when ah got mah power chair hung up on the elevator door downstairs.  The door opened an’ ah was tryin’ ta back out an’ mah chair got hung up on the door.  Ever body else but one on the elevator got off, an’ she was holdin’ the door open fer the other people to git on, cause she was goin’ up an she got on the down elevator.  Ah’s tryin’ ta git the people ta back up an’ give me room ta git the chair unstuck from that there door, but one person got on that dern elevator and gosh dern it, ever body in the buildin’ tried to foller him.  Ah kept askin’ ’em ta please back up an’ give me some room so ah could git the chair off the doorway, but they acted like a buncha cows that got outta the pasture.  Ever gol’ darn one of ’em wanted on that elevator, an’ by golly, they intended to git on it rite then, even if it meant they would scoot me right back into the dang thing.  It took me a time and a time to finally git them outta the way so’s ah could fin’ly git off the door, an’ they weren’t goin’ any place any way with me in their way.

When ah lived out in the cuntry the cows usta git out an’ ah’d hafta chase ’em in almos’ ever day.  One person cain’t chase a herd of stupid cows.  They have a herd mentality.  One starts an’ the rest foller.  The fish in that pond do that.  The folks in this here old folks home do it too.  One person decided to go upstairs an’ alla rest follers.  An’ they all wanna go right now.  Not in five minnits, but RIGHT NOW!  An’ God help anybody in ther way.

End of rant.

100_2470 Yesterday ah decided to dehydrate some tomato sauce to make tomato leather.  Thought it might take me ’bout four to five hours.  Up all night baby sittin’ the blame stuff.  Had to rearrange trays cause some got more heat than others, an’ kep’ goin’ back’ards an for’ards checkin’ on it all night long.  Got the paper in ’bout 6:30 this mornin’ an’ checked it agin’ an’ fin’ly found some that was leathery.  ‘Bout noon it was all finished. 100_2473 This bowl is holdin’ four quarts of pasta sauce that’s been turned into pasta leather.  Tastes kinda peppery an’ salty, but not too bad.  Wonderin’ what ta do with it when Gina called me.  Figgered ah’d hafta jist eat it all, or drop it in pieces in soup, but she suggested ah try choppin’ it in itty bitty pieces an’ puttin’ it in mac ‘n cheese, an’ cornbread, an’ all kinda stuff like that.  Didn’t sent that girl ta college fer nothin’.  An’ now Ethan’s in college an’ jist took a big test an’ got a 98 on it.  Jist like his mom and dad.  Real smart like.

Had some computer trouble yesterday.  Think ah wrote a post, but disremember correctly, cause of computer bein’ so stubborn.  Fin’ly jist unplugged the dern thang, an’ unplugged it from the phone jack an’ left it settin’.  First thang ah wanted was throw it out the dang window, but couldn’t git the screen out, so jist let it set an’ contemplate its cantankerous attitude.

Old dirt road Ah ‘member one old dirt road in partic’lar. Mom & Pop's house This house stood at the end of it.  Mom and Pop Goetz’s house.  Ma paternal grandparents.  Ever body called ’em Mom ‘n Pop.  Even strangers called ’em that.  They had a dairy farm while they was livin’.  Mosta the cows was milked by machines, but somma the cows was Mom’s pets.  She always milked ’em by hand ever mornin’ an’ ever night.  Ah can ‘member goin’ out ta the milkin’ house with her an’ watchin’ her milk those cows.  Always smelled so good in there.  A sweet milky smell.  Ah remember a sour cherry tree in the chicken yard there.  Usta climb up in that ole tree an’ eat them cherries ‘fore the birds got to ’em.  Don’t think anybody else liked ’em all that much.  Ah know none a mah brothers or sisters like ’em.  Ah always liked the sour things.  Green apples, sour cherries, green tomatoes, almost any green kinda fruit.  Hadta have pucker power.  Ah could even eat a lemon.  Still can.

Well, more about that tamorrow.

A.

Lookin’ At The World With New Perspective


Hay bales by SeedBud Had a good day today.  Picture of hay bales is by seedbud, a fellow blogger.  Reminds me of my days on the farm, cookin’ for the farm hands, quiltin’ in my spare time, pickin’ whatever was ripe in the garden and cannin’ or freezin’ it.  This time of year usually apples, pears, turnips, tomatoes, late beans, hull out beans.  Really loved the hull outs.  Took lots of time to do ’em, but boy howdee, were they good!!!.  Always tried to have lots of ’em in the freezer.  Better than the dried beans, and didn’t take as long to cook.

hay bale Found gigantic hay bale on FaceBook.  Tickled my fancy.   Could see Mike and Noah doin’ somethin’ like this.  Prob’ly Andrew too, if he was here.  Not sure how to make one that big, but they could do it if they tried.  ‘Specially Noah.  Really smart kid.Finally getting some sleep. Does fall asleep in odd places sometimes.  Kinda like his dad — real clown.

100_2430 Got good news about broken power chair while was waitin’ for elevator.  Phone rang while countin’ the flowers on wall.  Was lady from store ordered new chair from.  Medicare fin’ly approved new chair.  Maybe get it in two weeks.  Good thing.  Keep gettin’ stuck everywhere when seat turns but bottom stays in same position.  Did that when fin’ly got off elevator.  Funny thang on elevator.  Two people already on it.  Everybody forgot to push button, so went down to second floor, then back up.  Elevator full, so nobody else could get on.  Noticed no buttons pushed, so man pushed button for ground.  Stopped every floor, but nobody else could get on.  Just one skinny person.  Started backing out and bottom of chair got stuck on side of door while seat turned around.  Couldn’t make it go in any direction.  People all around, so fin’ly tole ’em to move back so could make chair move away from door.  Started laughin’ so took longer to move, but fin’ly got away an’ went outside.  Nice day in shade, but sun kinda hot.

Tole some frien’s about gettin’ new chair.  One of ’em said he got approved too, an’ was gettin’ his in a month.  Asked what was goin’ do with old chair.  Turned seat aroun’ an’ showed how broken it was, said pro’ly park it by garbage dump an’ hope they pick it up, or someone drive it off.  Dangerous to use.

Went to eye doctor for checkup.  Afraid have to do surgery on right eye.  Everythin’ zig zaggy in that eye.  Doc say it okay, hole in it still closed up and zig zag go away in time, maybe.  Hope so.  Thangs look funny there.  Doors all zig zaggy when go thru ’em.  Kinda funny when hit ’em.  Zig when they zag.  Like a game.

How crazy Thought I’d leave ya with a funny.  Really true funny.  Love actin’ crazy.  Makes people look at me funny.

Oh, yeah.  Had 40th anniversary of building today.  Lawn festival.  Didn’t get to go ’cause had to go to eye doc, but donated some ruffled scarves for country store.  Manager told me they were big hit when fin’ly got home ’bout 4:30.100_2283 Don’t know which ones gave them.  Prob’ly one of each color.  Made lots of ’em while havin’ MS relapse for ’bout 6 months.  Couldn’t do anythin’ else, so just finger knitted ruffled scarves.  Lots of fun but more than one person needs.

Have good night.

A.

Lost, Found, Lost Again


And then forgot what I lost in the first place.

I remember now.  Lost my charger for camera battery.  Wanted to take a pic of my veggies taking a swim in the sink.  Camera wouldn’t work.  Little thingy on-screen blinking.  Looked like a battery, so started looking for charger.  Remembered seeing it somewhere.  Couldn’t remember where.  Had to be somewhere near computer, since everything is by the computer unless it’s in the kitchen.  And why would the charger be in the kitchen?  Forgot for a minute I was talking about myself.

Anyway, in bedroom, looking for charger, I found a lot of things I forgot I had.  Notebooks, more mystery cables, CD’s, photos, two packages of new socks, plaque I got for poet of the century — that’s 20th century, basket with more lost screws, everything but the battery charger.

100_2362 Just so you won’t feel robbed, these are the veggies that got a bath last week.  Today they were mostly green.  Except for the squash.  And the eggplant.

Started feeling hungry then.  And remembered I forgot to eat breakfast.  A glance at the clock showed me it was after 1 p.m.  I had spent 4 hours looking for the charger.  But had forgotten what I was looking for during that time.  Went back to the kitchen and got a dish to oven fry green tomato and fish.  Glanced up at shelf above the dish, and there was the charger.  I KNEW I had seen it somewhere.  But my veggies were already out of the bath, sliced, steamed and in the dehydrator.  Too late for that picture.

At least I had a great lunch.  Just ate too much, so probably won’t want dinner tonight.  Raw veggie snacks maybe.  And by oven frying, no grease and no visit from the fire department.  I really admire those guys, but it’s just kinda not right for them to have to come every time I set off my alarm.  Just bringing water to a boil sets off that alarm.  What would happen if someone’s house burned down while they were here because I’m boiling water?

free time This is me right now.  I can’t believe I’m writing this post this early.  Maybe because it’s Sunday.  It usually takes me half the day to just read the paper.  I think I read it.  Don’t know for sure.

Intended to go to the grocery today.  Couldn’t remember what I needed, so I didn’t go.  If I can’t remember needing it, I must not need it all that much.  Doesn’t do me much good to write a list.  I forget the list.  So that’s wasted time.  But so is wandering up and down grocery aisles.  I’ll remember one day when I need it and it’s raining outside.  That’s okay.  I can change plans easily.

Melting face This picture makes me smile.  ‘Specially since my calendar says it the last day of the “Dog Days” of summer.  Maybe so, but it’s hot Don!  I live on the 16th floor, and I’m not sure the a/c is working up here.  Or maybe it’s because I had the oven on.  Hadn’t thought about that.  I was wearing one of my dad’s flannel shirts when I turned the oven on, but I just took it off.

Oh, yeah, the part about lost again?  My battery is charged, and charger put away “where I won’t lose it”.  Except, I don’t remember where I put it.  Lost again.

A.

Train Wrecked Kitchen


What a day.  More food than I know what to do with, and just realized I haven’t eaten much of it.  Waffles this morning.  Watermelon off and on while working on it to turn it to syrup.  Got my weekly delivery from Cecil Farms.  What a haul.100_2361 Peppers, potatoes, tomatoes, okra, melons.  My counter top was full.

100_2362 Taking a bath in water and peroxide.  Tonight most will be put in dehydrator.  A couple of peppers will be stuffed for lunch tomorrow.  Okra will be seasoned and baked tonight.  Served with summer sausage, pickles and sliced tomato.  Or maybe grape tomatoes.  But they make such nice, sweet treats during the day.

100_2359100_2360 Watermelons now in crock pot turning into watermelon syrup.  Will be ready for waffles for breakfast.  Hoping to get enough white part of rind for pickles.  I’m loving watermelon pickles.  It’s a pain to trim the green and pink parts off, but the results are worth all the trouble.

100_2357 The blueberries I dropped as I was putting them in the fridge.  Think I got them all picked up.  Tile has large black spots on it, and tried to pick a lot of them up.  Well, they LOOKED  like the blueberries.  Past time to get my glasses changed.  At least I didn’t step on any of the berries.  And the floor had just been mopped.  A ray of sunshine peeking thru the cloud there.

Back to my syrup now.  It needed a bit of sugar, so I grabbed a bag out of the cabinet.100_2363 Oops!  Caught it just in time.  Don’t think flour would have improved the taste at all.  Reached back in the cabinet and grabbed the next bag I found. 100_2364 Right one this time.  Decided I had better pour it in the sugar container.  I didn’t take a picture of the spilled sugar, because it wouldn’t show up on the light background, but had to clean up at least a cup full.  Sure don’t want ants visiting.

100_2366 So, here we are.  It was time to package the burgoo for the freezer.  Sourdough starter is out for making waffles in the morning.  Have to make the sponge tonight.  Syrup is in the crock pot.  Veggies in blue bowl after their swim.  Dishes piled in sink.  And the day is only half over.

Tonight dishes are washed, burgoo is in freezer.  It survived the drop test.  Naturally, I dropped a couple of packages on my way to the freezer.  They didn’t break open, so I can rest easy (I hope) knowing they will stay closed (I hope) in freezer.  Still have to slice the peppers and stick in dehydrator and fix my okra, but since this is just now the middle of my day, that’s okay.

I even spent a couple of hours downstairs talking to friends.  That was mostly to avoid dealing with the dishes.  Guess I was hoping someone would come in and do them for me while I was out.  Once again, it didn’t happen.  Well, I can dream, can’t I?  That darn blue bowl is screaming my name, so I have to go and do something with those peppers.  Slice, slice, slice the peppers open.  Don’t recognize the tune?  Try, Tramp, tramp tramp the boys are marching.  Oh well, you’re probably too young to remember WWII.

A.

Disasters and Decisions


Alone in the dark I just needed something pretty to look at while I write this.  That’s a pretty flower, isn’t it?Magnolia bloom  This one is too.

So, here we are.  First disaster.  I got up this morning.  First decision, I’m just going to start living on the floor.  Might as well, since that’s where I always end up.

I didn’t take any photos today, because of the rest of the disasters.

First, after pulling myself back to my feet, I made my green tomato relish.  A person would think when you take the blade out of the food processor it only makes sense to put it back in before trying to chop more veggies.  Have I ever said I was sensible?  Three times I had to dump veggies out of F.P. bowl to put the blade back in.  THREE TIMES!!!  Okay, I got my relish finished.  Put in jars.  Processed.  All sealed.  Dishes cleaned up.

Next disaster.  Blueberry, raspberry syrup in the crock pot.  Ran everything thru the food processor.  Even remembered to put the blade back in.  Poured entire mess in crock pot.  Just didn’t like the way the blueberries looked.  They weren’t pureed enough.  So….I grabbed my emulsion blender.  All sane people know better.  Have I ever said I was sane?  Can you guess what happened?  I could still take a picture of that mess, because I still haven’t had the courage to go back in the kitchen.  I did get the stains off myself–after much scrubbing.  My pink shirt will need soaking.  Blue jeans don’t really show blueberry stains, so just need to go in laundry.  Big sticky mess.

Decision:  I will eventually have to go back in kitchen to put syrup in jars.  Have to seal them, process them.  Have to clean up the mess.  Big sigh here.  But I have discovered a good stain remover.  Hydrogen peroxide and water.  Not sure of the proportions, but to soak clothes I used half a bottle of peroxide to a bucket of water.  Just to make sure I didn’t take the color out of part of the shirt I put the whole shirt in the bucket so it would all come out the same color.  Stain removed, color stayed.

back yard gardenI need more flowers.  This will not get me down.  But I am really considering making a bed on the floor.  Maybe build a tent over it and play “camping out”.  I could invite some friends over to play with me.  We could call ourselves the Arthritic Idiots.  That would put a brand new spin on getting up in the morning.  Maybe we could have a prize for the first one on their feet.  The only downside to that could be that we would all spend the day on the floor.  Or have to call 911 to help us get up.  That could be fun.  We could come up with great ideas to explain why we were all down there.  And have a prize for the best idea.  I think I’m on to something here.

Now I have to go back in the kitchen.  It might be easier to move.

A.

 

Random Thoughts on a Boring Day


Maroon Bells in Colorado

Maroon Bells in Colorado

 

 

I just decided to lead off today with a really pretty picture.  Not sure if Sylvie or Larry took it, but I love it.  Colorado is a beautiful state, but I can’t go there.   It’s just too high.  People with MS can’t go places that are so high.  The last time I was there was 1992.  Before I knew I had MS.  Now I visit it thru Sylvie’s photos.  It’s really a lot more fun for me that way.  Not as tiring as sitting in a car all those hours.  Already have dead feet.  Sometimes dead hands.  Don’t need dead butt to go with them.

I made a few discoveries today.  Did a little bit more scavenging.100_2322 Saw some bright pink staring out at me from the bottom of the table next to my chair.  YAY!  Pink piggy.  Now I can cook again.  Piggy is back on the counter.  Last two green tomatoes behind him.  Think I might oven fry them tonight.  No chance of setting off smoke alarm again.  I hope.  And I can time them.  Think I’ll stick some zucchini in there with them.  Or, maybe I’ll just oven dry all of it.  Who knows.  Does it really matter in the scheme of things?

Also found this: 100_2323 my yarn stash that I hadn’t even missed yet.  100_2324 And my snacks that I had forgotten about.  I remember getting the Veggie sticks now.  Got hungry when I was doing the laundry, so decided on those instead of candy bar.  I got two bags, but only ate one, so I had this one left over.  The pretzels should have been on the table next to my chair.  Found them across the room on a different chair.  Don’t ask me.  I don’t know how they got there.  For that matter, I don’t know how I got here.  Like the title says, random thoughts.

Did you know a sneeze travels 100 mph?  That means I’ve traveled close to 1000 miles today without ever leaving my apartment.  Imagine that!  Anyone want to come visit me tonight?  Maybe we could have a sneezing contest.

I finished pitting my cherries today.  Didn’t get any juice on myself this time.  Got some on the towels I had wrapped around me though.  And had to soak another shirt last night.  I dripped some cherry syrup on it.  I’m wondering now if my mixture of water and Hydrogen Peroxide will take out old stains.  Every time I eat I dribble something on my shirt.  I call it my midnight snack.  Not too embarrassing at home, but really a bummer in a restaurant.  It always involves white shirts and tomatoes.  Or grease.  I’m not sure which is the hardest to get out.  Probably both.  Nah, grease.  I’m not sure what works as a degreaser.  Dawn dish detergent?  Works on dishes.

100_2267 Just thought I’d show you what an ingenious idea Irene came up with for my kitchen utensils.  I used to have to dig around the drawer and an old flower pot for them.  Don’t ask.  One day after she left I didn’t have to go on a scavenger hunt for them.  They were right there where I could find them.  Most of them don’t match, since I used to forget what I had and would see one on sale.  Bought it thinking I didn’t have one like it.  Naturally found one similar when I got it home.  But you never know when you’ll need two of something.  Small problem getting the cutting board out from behind them though.

I discovered the mystery ingredient gloop I had in the crock pot a few nights ago was really pretty good.  Still not sure what’s in it, but have saved it all in freezer.  Just named it gloop.  I should have written down what I put in it.  Never know when I might want to make it again.  Or not.

Just another random thought here.  If you ever decide to behead someone, make sure there’s no one around.  The head remains alive for 30 seconds after beheading, so that would give it time enough to identify you.  Just saying.

A.

A Blah Kind of Day


It’s Tuesday.  What can you say about Tuesday?  Not much happens on Tuesdays.  They are just blahy.  You wake up.  You’re either alive or dead.  If you get out of bed, chances are you’re alive.  If you don’t get out of bed you might still be alive, or you could be dead and not know it yet.  Since I got out of bed, I think I must still be alive.  Still, it could be fun to be a lively ghost.  Just think how much fun it would be to creep up behind someone and yell “Boo”, and watch them jump because they can hear you but don’t see you.  Okay, blame that line on Tuesday.

The Vegetable and Egg Lady was here this morning, and I was first in line, so I got most of her squash and green tomatoes.  I’m gonna make relish tomorrow.  There was one mutant squash that I left behind, but now I wish I had bought it.  It was kinda cute.  Two baby squashes that had grown together.100_2302 This is a picture of part of today’s haul.  I forgot about the onions.  And I had to get a few things at the grocery.  The cherries came from the grocery.  They add some pretty color to the picture, so that’s why they are there.  The flash sorta washed a lot of the color out of the squash.  Well, I never claimed to be a GOOD photographer.  I did a lot better with black and white.

After getting home from the grocery I waited around for the mail.  Just for a little bit.  Had some chicken in my bag, so I didn’t want it to go bad while I waited.  I finally gave up and came home, put the chicken in the fridge, put rest of things out of my way.  Sat down for a little while, but got restless and did something.  Don’t remember what now, but I know I did something.  Might have taken a nap.  I wouldn’t remember that, so maybe that’s it.

I do remember I didn’t eat lunch, because there was an MS function at Moonlite tonight.  For the uninitiated, the Moonlite Barbecue Inn is a legend in these parts.  They have a buffet with everything you would want on it, and a lot of things you didn’t know you wanted until you see them.  One thing I have learned with age.  Eat dessert first.  That way if you get too full, you will get your dessert in.  Biggest disappointment for me the past few times though — no cherry cobbler.  They are famous for their barbecue, but to my way of thinking, anyone can barbecue.  But I’ve gone there for the cherry cobbler since 1960.  Until this past spring they have never disappointed me.  All of our MS functions are there, but the last ones I’ve gone to, no cherry cobbler.  I may have to put on a signboard and picket them, hanging on to my walker, with “bring back cherry cobbler” written everywhere.  Maybe paint some cherries on my face.

When I got home I checked my mailbox.  Made me happy I didn’t wait around earlier.  Just a flyer from some company wanting to sell me something I don’t want/need/care about.  I keep asking the postman to just put stuff like that in file 13, but he said he has to deliver it.  Even if it doesn’t have my name on it.  Just addressed to “Resident”.  That doesn’t make a lot of sense to me.  Do the companies who send out that junk really think someone is going to read it?

I have a new neighbor on the floor.  I don’t think I’m going to like him much.  He has a scooter (like a 3-wheeler for old people) and a grandson.  I have nothing against grandsons.  I have some myself.  But this particular kid drives grandpa’s scooter up and down the hall all day.  Even drives it downstairs in the lobby.  And when I foolishly mentioned to grandpa that the kid shouldn’t be doing that, he cussed me out.  Fortunately it was in front of witnesses.  After they left the building one of the guys who heard him said no man should ever speak that way to a lady.  In fact, he told me he was afraid for a few minutes the man was going to hit me.  Well, he might hit me once, but he would not hit me twice.  I don’t have the strength I used to have, but remember enough moves to take him down, and then call the police.

Well, that was my blah Tuesday.  At least I have some constructive plans for Wednesday.  See ya’ then.

A.