Monday, January 21, 2013

End of Long Weekend, Lots of Random

Recently I've scribbled notes on things I wanted to blog about, here and there, and then not had time to post them. The problem is that once I've written something down, I feel like I've blogged about it, and I get confused. So here's a bunch of unrelated stuff; the only common thread is me (scary thought). Have fun!

It's been a good weekend. Hockey (ahhh), and not just hockey but promising hockey, two Bruins wins, ahhhh; lots of reading; sufficient accomplishment in the laundry/dishes/tidying areas that I don't feel guilty; knitting; Carlos. January marks some feline anniversaries here. This year is three years since I got Carlos, and four since I got Miri. It's funny how different those two feel, isn't it? Four whole years putting up with Miri, and only three years of loving Carlos.

I'm thinking of doing more cooking in the crock pot. I want to sit down at some point and decide what changes to try for beef stew next time, and may I add, it will not include paprika! I was a little hesitant to add it last time, but when I do a new recipe for the first time, I like to follow it pretty faithfully. Saying, "I took this recipe except I did x, y, and z instead of a, b, and c, and I didn't like it" seems like an unfair reaction to a recipe, if you know what I mean. Anyway, I did add the paprika as the recipe called for, and when I ate the stew that night I was surprised, if pleasantly, that I didn't even notice it. Funny, right? But then with leftovers I really could taste it, and not in a way I liked. I don't understand why the flavor came out more in reheating, but whatever, no paprika in the stew for me, moving on.

Before I do Stew Take 2, though, I wanted to try something different, and on googling for slow cooker recipes, I was intrigued by the idea of lasagna in the crock pot. The first recipe I saw was actually one with pesto, mushrooms, and spinach, and while I am a big fan of the first, not so much of the second and third, so I kept looking. I found a couple of possibles, and then mentioned it to a friend at work who told me that another woman at work has a recipe she swears by. So I got that from her, and went grocery shopping. And it's good! I've made it twice already, in fact, and am making it again next weekend when I have friends coming over. It's pretty easy, and tastes good: I call that a keeper.

I had a really good idea the other day, if I do say so myself, and was pretty bummed when I realized it wouldn't work out. I don't even remember the thought process that led me to it, but somehow I put together the idea of buying a Nexus 7 (small tablet [computer crossed with a phone]), which I plan to do, and the idea of wanting a case for it, with the idea of having a cover that looked like a "real" book, with the memory that I have a book that was mis-bound and is therefore useless. Wouldn't that be too cool, a book I loved getting another life that way? Alas, it is slightly too small to make a case for the N7. I'm still considering getting a book-case for the machine, when the time comes, and even found a company that will make a case from a book you send them, as opposed to ones that will make them out of books they have (since I don't want to carry a title I haven't read or don't like). I'll see what I can find that will fit the size needed.

I wish I could come up with another use for that copy of T. Tembarom, though. It's bigger than I'd need for the MP3 player ... maybe the GPS? But that's more trouble than it's worth, I think. Sigh. Googling shows me people making old books into clocks and purses, but neither of those appeal to me. Shame, really. It was such a good idea.

I'm not the most militant reduce-reuse-recycle person, but I do recycle a lot of things,and I try to be aware. For instance, when given a choice, I try to choose things with minimal packaging, but sometimes the best way comes with more packaging, and I am at peace with that. For instance (you knew there was a for instance coming, right?), I happen to like eating dried plums, since I like the flavor and they're a pretty healthy snack. I eat them a lot, so I want to buy a package that isn't the smallest size, but it annoyed me when they start to dry out before I finish the package. Also, it's hard to bring them to work, because they are sticky by nature, and it all gets complex, wah wah wah, first world problem.

Enter individually wrapped dried plums. Packaging fail, but consumer win! They stay fresh, they travel easily, I don't get my fingers all sticky eating them: win all around. Thank you, Sunsweet! (This was not a paid review, though if they want to send me some for free, or even a coupon, I'd be delighted.)

I know this knowledge has thrilled you. This is why you read my blog, right? I knew it.

The microwave at work beeps when the food is done, naturally, and then if no one opens the door, it beeps again about once a minute. Which means you're sitting and working and BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP what was I thinking about? Oh, right, the incidence of MS in 5 EU countr BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP all right, deep breath, MS in 5 EU countries, by 2022 rates are forecast to be BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP oh for the love of Pete, whose is that? Go get your lunch! I don't understand how some people don't notice things that drive other people insane.

And that's how I react when I don't have a headache.

As of Friday, two weeks after the end of the holidays, My Least Favorite Coworker was still coughing, which I really hope she'll have finally gotten past over the weekend. You don't have to tell me that she must be more sick of doing it than I am of listening to it, but man, is it annoying to work with someone who coughs and clears her throat All Day Long.

If she's still doing it this week, on top of the rest of the joys of this week ... we're having meetings in the office this week, I guess people from the NY office and who knows who else are coming, and since one of the "who else" is the big boss, we were told to dress up on Wednesday and Thursday. Which I don't quite understand ... he's the big boss, and he has to know ours is a business-casual office, right? And if he didn't want it to be one, he has the power to change that. So why do we pretend, when he's in town, that we wear suits and stuff? It doesn't quite make sense to me. But really I'm crabby because there's supposed to be a lot of work coming to editorial for January publication, and I don't know how much work I'll be able to get done for those two days. The whole situation has a high irritation potential. I'm glad to have had this pleasant weekend, but it may not help me too much as the week progresses.

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