Thursday, December 2, 2021

Thursday Thoughts - everybody has a reason to begin again

Embracing the weeks leading up to the winter solstice and getting hygge with it. Lights and candles to bring the light in when the outside does not provide. Reflection, intentions, sitting deep into the coming winter and myself.
Waiting for Billy Cat to destroy something. He is the cat version of the Grinch slinking himself around my decorations. Excuse the blurry shots, they are taken from video. But you get the drift. 
Loving seeing everyone's menorahs

Making my list and checking it twice. I have no fucking idea what I do and don't have for Christmas. 

Staying longer in Philly that I originally planned to when I came up yesterday. I will probably stay through Sunday morning to get some shit done that I put off every time I come back here. I'll be doing more of the back and forth through December while the temps make that possible. If we're to keep the shore house open, we need to be down there on the frozen days. 

Romping on the beach every day we're there. We love the warm days but we go on the cold days too.

Knowing who my most listened to will be before Spotify even wraps. One does not name their dog Bruce Springsteen without listening to a lot of Bruce Springsteen, you know? 
Raging over the comments by Roberts and Kavanaugh on the Mississippi abortion case. Like, don't talk to me raging. Not able to discuss raging. Go fuck yourself raging. Abortion on demand without apology or explanation and not anyone's business

Failing to see how this is a thing even though people are very much trying to make it a thing every time anyone says happy holidays on the internet. If I didn't see it in comments myself I wouldn't believe it because it is possibly the only thing stupider right now than let's go brandon said in a way that implies the rest of us don't know what it means which makes me laugh uncontrollably which is the opposite of what they want I think. Is Christmas not a fucking holiday? Why the fuck do you care if someone says happy holidays and you say Merry Christmas? The fake fragility and bravado for defending Christmas which needs no fucking defense makes me want to scream. Go away. Do things that actual Jesus would have done like care about the sick and poor people and love everyone. 

Digging this as far as processed shit goes
Entering Ben cold season. He follows the sun, I put the heat on for him, and he has an electric blanket which he shares with Mae and Cici. Constantly cold, constantly refusing to wear a jacket. 

Listening to Long Walk Home by Springsteen. A favorite. 

Watching Yellowstone. I caught up this week. I forgot what it's like to watch a show episode by episode. It sucks. It is still hard for me to wrap my head around Rip being Billy in Good Will Hunting.

Eating pork tenderloin and salad are on the menu for tonight. Maybe a veggie type of casserole tomorrow night. I need to see what I have.

Delighting in following DesignMom on Instagram, love her stories of renovating the Tall House. Big fan of Twitter by Design Mom on there too.

Identifying with this more than I'd like to
Needing to wash my hair

Reading A History of Wild Places. I mowed through a few netgalley books earlier this week when I was solo at the shore. I also have a new novel by Shelby to beta read! I have to print that out today.

Reminding us all via Blair Imani

What's new with you?

What appears beyond the hyphen in Thursday Thoughts titles is what I'm listening to when I'm starting this - this week is Long Walk Home by Springsteen

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Foodie Tuesday

Is Foodie Tuesday a thing? I don't know, but I'm dumping my food stuff here because I was thinking about it last night. Feel free to do the same. I used to post about cooking and recipes so much more. I still have some from like 2019 that I never put up. I might get back into that. 

I know many of you out there are planning out your Christmas cookies. I'm not a baker, but I do accept cookies insert LOL face here. Nevertheless, I am ruminating on holiday foods as one does at this time of year. Mimi's bacon breakfast muffins are always a hit, but I might give the sausage and pancake muffin bites with maple butter by That's What She Eats a go this year too.

My main holiday requirements are easy/can be prepped ahead and put out at a moment's notice. Sometimes things are up in the air and it makes sense to me to have things on hand even if I don't end up using them in December. 

I am big on app spreads around holidays and lean heavily on DiBruno Brothers Prima Donna gouda, pepper shooters, nuts, cold shrimp with cocktail sauce, olives, etc. Veggies and dip - if you ever come to anything I ever have and there's no veggies and dip, you'll know someone is wearing my body as a disguise and it's not really me. I am also a fool for crackers topped with a bit of cream cheese and a delicious jelly. I like to make hot brie bites with jelly/jam/what have you too - Bucks County friends, I highly recommend this from Shady Brook.

Outside of holiday food, I'm trying to introduce variety but not difficulty with year end foods, so checking out posts like casseroles and crock-pots - heavier on the casseroles since I am not a huge fan of the crock-pot. My ideal thing is something easy and heavy on vegetables. Do you have anything you've made recently that would fit the bill?

I'm back into soups. Next week I'll make turkey stock and I'll probably end up doing a take on creamy turkey and wild rice soup with that. Paired with a salad, that's a perfect December meal I can prep ahead of time and just heat and eat. I also adore veggie beef barley - this is a link to that and three of my other top soups.

Food-adjacent: I brushed up on my knife skills with this video. I watch videos like that every once in a while as I'm not a chef by trade and I can get sloppy. I also checked out this post for how to cut a pomegranate. My skills with pomegranates and mangos are very poor and I want them not to be.

What have you made that's good lately? What do you keep on hand in the pantry, freezer, and fridge in advance of the holidays? 

Last day of November...I feel like this year has slipped through my fingers slash blended straight in with 2020. 

Monday, November 29, 2021

TWTW - well, the week that was

Mon - Wed I was off, but not much in the way of rest. Monday I headed back to Philly and got some Christmas stuff happening and errands run and chinese food for dinner. Tuesday the funeral services for my oldest friend's dad, a great man who used to lift me over the fence at three, four, five years old to play as our yards butted up against each other. Jen's family has always been so great to me, and I am sending all the love to them as they are hurting over this huge loss. I hightailed it back to the shore Tuesday to prep for Thanksgiving, running my final errands Wednesday morning to the grocery store and two corner stores to pick up. MFD arrived with Gus and Billy in the afternoon, and my brother and Aub and the kids shortly after. I prepped compound butter, had salad for dinner, and caught the sunset. 

Thursday Banger sunrise to start the day before prep work started. MFD was on stuffing and gravy, I was on turkey and sweet potatoes, Aubrey was on mashed potatoes and green bean casserole, Stephen was on kid games, entertainment, and sommelier. We took a beach walk while the turkey was in the oven and had snacks. Sam the bird (named by Lola) was out by 2:30 and we ate and lolled around for the rest of the day. 
Friday Dad & Carol arrived by about 8, and we set right to the turkey cookie decorating event...after Aubrey figured out how to make them stand up LOL. MFD was a late entry but he did his also during a break in his program. We took a family beach walk but didn't last long due to the wind. I dropped my brother off at Xfinity for the Flyers game and came back to do the art kits Cici got from my friend's studio Shades of Orange - they come pre-drawn with paint, buttons, and instructions you can follow or go on your own. You just need some glue. Christmas-themed and not. They make great gifts and support a small business! Mine is the pug, and Lola added a sweater to it. We bundled up to kick off the holiday season with my favorite tradition - Santa on the top of City Hall. We came back and ate Aubrey's delicious lasagna for dinner with salad and watched Big. 
Saturday Meat-heavy breakfast is how we rolled. Stephen, Aubrey, Dad, & Carol went to the Cape May Zoo with the kids. I cleaned up and read. Carol, Aubrey, Lola and I did some small business Saturday shopping on Asbury Ave. with traditional chocolate covered marshmallows on the way home. I was glad for the mask outside at that point as it was freezing and it's a great face warmer. App and leftover general chaos and Clifford the Big Red Dog movie to close out the day.
Sunday We painted some shells, Aubrey ordered us breakfast from Deadend Bakehouse, and we visited the North Street Tree to leave out shells and admire others. It was beautiful so we lingered a little on the jetty. MFD headed back to Philly with Gus and Billy. After a playground interlude, Aubrey made nachos, I used leftovers for brie bites, and we put out leftover snacks for the Eagles game. Aubrey and my brother left with the kids in late afternoon, I took the dogs to the beach for sunset, and I watched Hallmark movies with Carol and Dad until I threw in the towel a little after 8.

Thankful for another great holiday weekend with the fam at the shore. I hope your weekend was great, however you spent it. 

Happy Hanukkah wishes to my Jewish friends!

Staring down the last two days of November, I'm trying to think about what I want the last month of my year to look like. 

Have a good one! 

Monday, November 22, 2021

TWTW - the one before Thanksgiving

Friday was Adele day to do my morning work to. Not a fan of the first four songs aside from Easy on Me. Loved the rest. Ben and Bruce were still out of it from their shots on Thursday and I was still not 100% after my booster Tuesday. We did get to the beach at lunch, and I had Ben and Mae on their electric blanket in the afternoon. After work I started a new book. My dad & Carol arrived in the late afternoon and we ordered from Red's for dinner. I was in bed early.  
Saturday I had my errands (drop large comforter to cleaner, groceries, bagel pickup) done by 9. Dad made breakfast, and I stuffed some Christmas cards. Carol and I ran into the Grinch & Santa on the way to the thrift store and saw lots of pajama-clad shoppers at the Earlier than the Bird shopping event in town. I painted my nails (OPI It's a Girl! and Princesses Rule!). 
In the afternoon I took the dogs on a long beach walk and they were very tired after which we always like. My admins worked very hard stuffing, sealing, stamping, and stickering my holiday cards. Seriously though they have done so much for us while they’ve been staying with us that when they move into their new house it is going to be a rude awakening. I threw some spare ribs and bratwurst in the crockpot with ginger ale, mustard powder, and sauerkraut. Carol and Dad got sides from Bennie's and it was delicious. Carol put out some of the shore Christmas stuff and I watched my first Hallmark Christmas movie ever. 

Sunday I got a good sleep and eased into the day with some reading before showering and heading out to TJ Maxx, talking to Laura on the way. The trip was moderately successful, some shit is getting returned today. I came home in time for snacks I mean the Eagles game, and did not much else aside from receive real name information on someone who sent violent threats online under a fake name to MFD and figure out where to report those since our local PD would bin them and I want a paper trail of them. 

I'm off today. I'm off all week. Huzzah. 

Friday, November 19, 2021

Like Thursday Thoughts but on Friday

1. Yesterday just past 6:30 am I spilled half of my coffee in my lap in the middle of the Walt Whitman bridge. I should have known then that Thursday Thoughts was not happening on Thursday but I held out hope until 11:45 then lunch meeting. So here we are with Thursday Thoughts, Friday-style. It's been a week, and I don't mean that it's been bad, just full. 

2. I am thrilled with the OPI holiday collection this year. I'm not a product photographer but if you want to check these out on the interwebs I got all from - the website is a little clunky but they have availability when many others don't - all OPIs...Mylar Dreams, Paint the Tinseltown Red, To All a Good Night, My Color Wheel is Spinning, and Ready, Fete, Go. All sparkly and happy which is good in January and February too. 

3. Speaking of product shoots, Kim was up for a photo shoot at Evan's Evan Leslie Images Studio for her company Yunizon (sunglass folks, check them out, would make a great Christmas gift from a small biz too). She crashed with us and it was nice to see her face to face which happens once a year usually. Michelle stopped by the next morning and that was great too. A nice Tuesday-Wednesday change from the norm. We've all always been the don't sit next to our group in a restaurant type of people. Speaking of Christmas gifts, Evan does portrait work at his studio and beyond. 
4. I know there are a ton of aerie people out there but I haven't been one of them. This weekend henley mockneck sweatshirt thing changed that. Super comfortable, presentable on the zooms. They're 40% off right now and also my new uniform. 

5. As we approach the holidays and hell every day we know the importance of seasoning our food, yes? Yes. Very good, in the words of Tabitha Brown. Loving her Sunshine seasoning on chicken thighs. I also die for Fox Point by Penzey's on fish and veggies but since I was fresh out I subbed with this and it worked. Aside from no food period there is nothing worse than bland, unseasoned food.

6. I got my covid vaccine booster Tuesday. My reaction was similar to my reaction with shot #2 - symptoms arrived at the same time (23-25 hours after the shot) and were the same (chills, fever, general immobility) but were less intense and much shorter in duration. From like 12-15 hours of being totally down to about five. Lingering fatigue and general blah the next day too. As always still absolutely worth it especially as the Delta is still swirling. Bruce and Ben got their shots yesterday too and Bruce was up at 4 am telling me how hurt he was over it. I do not argue with dog vaccine recommendations either. Here's Billy Cat sandwich for good measure.

7. Photos from the week

8. This justice system does not work and is certainly not fair and balanced and I don't need to watch trials for this to be known. Neither do you. Why are you so invested in it? There is no possibility justice will be served in this trial in particular. What matters to me at this point is the lengths people will go to and the absolutely hypocritical mental leaps people will make to defend and excuse people like Kyle Rittenhouse while they puff up their chests and push out their comply or die bullshit in literally 90% of other cases. In trials like these, the defenses are invariably built on a shit scrap pile of white supremacy, patriarchy, and colonialism; and the people whose interests are served by maintaining these systems of oppression will go out among each other and demand they be defended. Guess what. Fuck off with your law and order bullshit when you know damn fucking well law and order only applies to some people and that you like it that way.

9. Reminder all the time but especially as we enter the holiday season (art via Banana Crush)

10. Ecards - 

TGIF. I'm off of work next week and I'm sliding into it with Adele. 30. 
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