Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Scarf-Tying Tutorial

Just wanted to remember this video so that I can look back at it when I'm tired of the same style.  Since they crank up the AC in here to make my workplace akin to the Arctic tundra, I wear scarves pretty much year round.  In Southern California.



Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Salsa!

This is more of a reminder to myself than an actual foodie entry.  I came across this recipe and adapted it.  Ralph always tells me to write down what I change so I'll remember for next time, and I NEVER remember.  So... here goes.

Ingredients:
1 large can tomatoes undrained
1 bunch cilantro
1/2 red onion (or whatever kind you have lying around)
juice from 1 lemon
1 1/2 tbsp chicken bullion
1-2 tsp garlic salt
1 jalapeño pepper
1 serrano pepper




Roast the jalapeño and serrano peppers by skewering them and holding them over an open flame until soft and blackened.  It's like roasting marshmallows for s'mores (which I happen to prefer charred).
Slice off the tops of the peppers and dump the remainder in a blender.  Take out the seeds if you don't want too much spice.  (I personally think it tasted great with no peppers at all, but I'm the minority in that respect, so I usually add a little kick.)  Chop off the stems of the cilantro and dump the rest of the bunch in the blender as well.  It doesn't matter if there are still some stems attached.  Throw in the rest of the ingredients and blend until smooth, or just pulse if you like it chunky.  Add salt to taste.



[Here's where you can really tell I'm no food blogger, given that all I had to display the finished product in was some tupperware and an old spaghetti jar.  Plus I didn't have any chips to eat with it so I just cut up some cucumber to dip in it.]


I find it tastes best to have it sit awhile (even overnight) to let all the flavors intermingle, but I'm usually too impatient and dive right in.

Ralph surprised me after he saw me making this by frying some chips out of tortillas. And that made life glorious.


Friday, February 21, 2014

Joy Warrior


I am not someone who looks at a mud puddle and sees a rainbow.  I look at a mud puddle, and not only see it as a mud puddle, but I get angry at the thought that I could have stepped in that mud puddle and ruined a perfectly good pair of shoes and then also been late to a meeting I was rushing to.  How dare that puddle be in my way!  I won't be happy that I happened to notice it just in time, I'll most certainly think about the times I didn't see one in time, and how I ruined my shoes,  my day, and what the hell, my whole life.  Those damned puddles!  Everything in life is out to get me!

See where I'm going with this?  I'm not a glass-is-half-full kind of person.  Most days I convince myself that I don't even want to be that kind of person, that naive, head-in-the-clouds ninny who lives in a fantasy world.  "I'm not a pessimist, I'm a realist!"  Problem is, that does nothing to help my depression, my relationships, my thoughts of the future.


I heard a term recently:  joy warrior.  That struck a chord with me.  Not because I resemble one in any way, because I can't just find joy.  I have to fight for it.  I have to push past all the negative feelings I carry with me at all times.  I have to block out all the nay-sayers I seem to have surrounded myself with over the years.  (Misery loves company, I guess?)  It is a full-on battle for me.  And some days, most days, I wonder if I have the energy to fight.  But I have a feeling it's vitally important for me to try.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Thank God That's Over With



Buh-bye 2013.  Don't let the door hit your a** on the way out.  


Would you believe the holiday season was relatively drama free?  I can hardly believe it myself.  2013 definitely went out more quietly than it came in, and I was beyond happy about that.

Last year I made no resolutions, no "one word" promises about the year, except perhaps to SURVIVE.  And amazingly, I did.  It was one of the toughest years yet, but I still managed to take in breath each day, keep my heart pumping, and my body and mind (fairly) intact.  Considering all the complications the year brought, surviving was a feat in and of itself.

I'm still not going to make any resolutions this year, and I'm still not really sure what I'm going to do here on the blog, if I'm even going to post anymore, but I will say that I'm feeling a lot better than I have in a while.  Oh yeah, depression still knocks on the door at a regular basis, and there is still stress and many, many complicated situations, but I'm really trying to focus on being content.  And I've been getting better at that.

Slowly, slowly, oh so slowly, I'm starting to peek my head out from under the covers and trying to work on living rather than simply surviving.  And it's hard, believe me.  There are so many days when I want to dive back under the layers I've built around myself and simply hunker down and wait out life.  But that's not a very fulfilling way to live, if you can even call it that.   So I'm trying to send out some tender shoots above ground, testing gently.  Growing slowly.

Who knows?  2014 might be a year to smile about this time next year.




One thing I can smile about?  The fact that I'm sitting in 75° temps unlike the rest of the country.  Below, Coco is demonstrating one of her favorite "winter" activities.  She love to push out the straw that we use insulate the dog house, and instead lay on it in the sunshine.  The snowflakes are just for effect.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Posting...

I often think about posting more, but everything I think of to write about makes me sound like a whiny, opinionated, sanctimonious a**hole.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

I just love dressing up.  And I'm lucky that I have great coworkers (and an awesome hubby) who get into the spirit of the holiday as well.





 (click to enlarge)



Last year we bought over 500 pieces of candy and ran out within half an hour.  I think we have kids bused in to our neighborhood.  One year the police set up a mini-substation at the end of our block just to make sure things didn't get too out of hand.  It's completely insane.  This year we're actually going to join the droves, as we take the boys' little brothers trick-or-treating.  We haven't done this for years, as the boys staunchly refused to let us accompany them for the past few years.  I'm so happy to be able to "participate" this year.

Have an awesome Halloween everyone!!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Day of the Brother




Today is my baby brother's birthday.  I always add the "baby" because everyone thinks he's older than I am.  It probably has something to do with the fact that he's about a foot taller than I am, has a much deeper voice, and is infinitely more mature than I'll ever be.

He's such a mellow guy, totally balances me out.  The sky could be crashing down around us and I'd be running around in circles screaming, meanwhile Ben would be calmly looking about for a helmet to protect his crazy sister's mushy brains.

I don't see him nearly often enough, and I miss him a lot.  But whenever we get together we pick up right where we left off and it's like no time has passed.  He's known me longer than anyone else, and yet still doesn't mind hanging out with me.  I sure am lucky to have him.

As a funny side note, his wife just posted this on Facebook the other day:

watching Benjamin play GTA is unreal. he stops at red lights, drives the speed limit, plays the radio at a reasonable volume, and refuses to punch hookers.


That sounds about right.

Happy Birthday Baby Brother!!