Friday, January 25, 2013

Seven Quick Takes with a prayer request at the end

--- 1 ---

Scott has been home sick all week. He's finally on the mend, but now I am crazy behind on dishes and laundry and all that stuff, and we're out a whole week's pay. It's not as big a deal as it might have been since January was going to be a 5-paycheck month, but there's a lot of things I could have thought of to do with that extra paycheck.

In case you didn't pick up on it, this is how I express concern for my husband, by grousing about something other than his illness. *grouses about money some more*

--- 2 ---

My total grocery spending for January was $184.80. I was shooting for under $180, and I would have done it too if Meijer hadn't gone and put fresh strawberries on sale. I cannot resist the lure of 5-for-5 strawberries even in the face of a $0 paycheck.

--- 3 ---

Last week, Kassie Rutherford posted about writing and challenged her readers to come up with a writing goal.

So I said I'd finish speed-editing my 120k-word monster of a novel. (Speed-editing means that I correct the most egregious typographical errors so that my poor beta readers don't commit ritual suicide while reading my work.) The last speed-edit of this novel took about 2 weeks, but a) It was about 35k shorter then, and b) I wasn't dealing with baptisms and multiple rounds of stomach flu.

Anyway, last Friday I had edited only about 20k, making my goal of sending it off to the betas by February 1 seem hopelessly out of reach. Now I'm up to about 70k. Counting today, I've got 7 days to get through those last 50k.

Who thinks I can do it?

--- 4 ---

Last night, we had chicken parmesan for dinner and almost immediately afterwards my mouth was all itchy, like I'd gotten a bad sunburn on the lower part of my face. 

I am not too concerned about this, considering I've been eating chicken parmesan for years and haven't gone into anaphylactic shock yet, but I find it curious and am making a note of it so I can observe it for science.

--- 5 ---

Since I was old enough to use the toaster myself, I have preferred very very pale toast. I want my bread warm and crunchy; I don't want brown spots on it. This annoys my family because sometimes I forget to set the toaster back and they also forget to check it before they put their own toast in and apparently putting your toast in twice is a lot of work. But that's not the point.

Several years ago, I was visiting my grandmother and I made myself some "toast". She looked at it and commented that my grandfather had always liked his toast like that too.

My grandfather died almost 2 years before I was born. My dad likes his toast dark. So there's no way I could have picked up the behavior. It makes me wonder if food preference is somehow genetic. (With recessive genes and everything, apparently, since this toast weirdness skipped a generation.)

This random quick take brought to you by the tuna salad on "toast" that I am eating for lunch.

--- 6 ---

Matthew updates, courtesy of Facebook:

He folds his hands during the before-meal prayer without being prompted.

He still stuffs everything in his mouth. (This week, my dad was prompted to comment, "Matthew's got a screw loose!")

He knows how to push chairs across the floor, but hasn't figured out how to climb on them yet.

He LOVES throwing things in the toilet. Like rosaries. (Catholic parenting problems...) And the handset for the old cordless phone that kind of needed replacing anyway.

This is all making me wish I lived a lot closer. Toddlers are my favorite.

--- 7 ---

Remember Scott's uncle who was diagnosed with brain cancer back in November? Well, Scott and I just found out yesterday that he died on January 7. Scott's mom is in Colorado for the funeral. Prayers for the repose of J's soul and for Scott's mom's safe travels would be appreciated. 

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Seven Quick January Takes

--- 1 ---

Matthew was finally baptized on Sunday! It was pretty awesome.

--- 2 ---

I made the cake myself.

It doesn't look bad, if I do say so myself, and it tasted AMAZING.

(It's Devil's Food Cake on the inside, which led to lots of jokes about how it was an inappropriate Lutheran cake.)

--- 3 ---

Teresa had a nasty stomach virus the week before the baptism, but she was all non-pukey and energetic by the baptism, so Mom figured she wasn't contagious. (Mom pointed out that you KNOW Teresa is really sick when all she does for 2 days is lie around meekly asking for popsicles. Being still and quiet are just not her things.)

Well, she was still contagious. I woke up on Tuesday feeling like death, made Scott's lunch, drove him to the bus stop, and then decided that I'd try the "sleep all day" method of curing illness instead of the "do everything the way you normally do, just feeling worse" method. I think the sleep one works better.

Scott likes it better too when I just sleep instead of touching all his stuff. He annoyed me Tuesday morning by commenting that he hoped he didn't get sick from eating a lunch that had been packed by a sick person. He redeemed himself shortly thereafter by concernedly telling me that I should call the doctor if I felt very sick and should call his mom if I wasn't sure. (Me: "I have a mother too, you know." Him: "I know, but yours didn't use to be a nurse.")

Anyway, I felt about 50% better by Wednesday morning and pretty much 100% better by Wednesday night. Scott feels fine so far, so we'll see if his caution about germs actually pays off.

--- 4 ---

You'd think I'd have more to blog about after pretty much not posting for a month, but apparently not much bloggable has been happening in my life. Howzabout I brag about the awesome Christmas presents I got instead? Not socially acceptable? That's okay; this is a blog for people with stunted social skills. 

A. My parents got us a printer. We've had it for four weeks, but I am still handwriting my grocery lists because the printer is still in its box. It's been kinda a busy month.

B. My sisters got me cookie cutters, awesome Christmas-themed sprinkles, and a stainless steel rolling pin of such weight that you'd think it was particularly intended for hitting intruders on the head. I suggested this theme because my mother asked for stuff that was "fun." instead of just boring. I have not yet had an opportunity to bake anything cookie-like, but I will do so and report back at some point.

C. Scott's parents got us a gift card to Half-Price Books and a crucifix. (One of those ones that are made from wood from olive trees in Bethlehem or some such.) The latter package was dropped off for us post-Christmas; when we opened it privately later on I commented, "Because the one thing we need more than more books is more crucifixes!" Scott replied, "Now we have a crucifix for every room in our future house."

This is why this is a blog for the socially incompetent.

(We like both gifts a lot, in case you couldn't tell.)

C2: Scott's parents also got me this as a belated birthday present. It is cute and wee and really, really sharp. I love it.

D. Younger Elder Brother and Mrs. Yeb, who hosted the Cobbler family holiday get-together, got us an Amazon gift card. You can't go wrong with Amazon gift cards; not in my book, anyway. (I brought them fudge. I hope they liked it.)

--- 5 ---

A while back, Scott's dad was talking on Facebook about a robotics team that Youngest Younger Brother is on. (Mr. Cobbler is one of the assisting grown-ups.) Scott commented, "It's cool that the robots can do that, but do they know how to make the robots do this other thing?" Mr. Cobbler replied, "Thank you for volunteering to teach them! You can email Mr. D___ to let him know you'll be helping out."

So Scott asked for Mr. D___'s contact info. -.-

Anyway, between that and Schola he's been gone three nights this week, and he'll be gone all day Saturday. I miss him lots. Fortunately, the robotics thing only lasts for about another month.

--- 6 ---

While we were visiting for the baptism, Teresa dragged me off to her room and told me we were playing doctor, which involved me lying down on her bed and letting her poke me with glittery pinecones. It was actually kind of restful, as far as playing with Teresa goes. (I love that kid to bits, but she's pretty intense.)

At the end of my "appointment", she handed me an envelope with scribbles on the back.

Me: "What's this?"

T: "It's your prescription."

Me: "What's it a prescription for?"

T: "Lots of rest."

Me: "Oh. Can I pick that up at the pharmacy?"

T: "Yes."

If she actually learned how to manufacture that, she'd make a mint.

--- 7 ---

Over Christmas, Scott kept staring at me and smiling, so I asked him why he was doing that and he said, "I just realized that my life is like Homestar Runner's grocery list."

(You should watch that whole video; it's funny.)

On that note, see you again whenever I feel like scraping together another seven quick takes.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Not a moment too soon

The Journey of the Magi

T. S. Eliot

A cold coming we had of it,
Just the worst time of the year
For a journey, and such a long journey:
The snow was deep and the weather sharp,
The very dead of winter.
And the camels galled, sore-footed, refractory,
Lying down in the melting snow.
There were times we regretted
The summer palaces on slopes, the terraces,
And the silken girls bringing sherbet.
Then the camel men cursing and grumbling
And running away, and wanting their liquor and women,
And the night-fires going out, and the lack of shelters,
And the cities hostile and the towns unfriendly
And the villages dirty, and charging high prices:
A hard time we had of it.
At the end we preferred to travel all night,
Sleeping in snatches,
With the voices singing in our ears, saying
That this was all folly.

Then at dawn we came down to a temperate valley,
Wet, below the snow line, smelling of vegetation;
With a running stream and a water-mill beating the darkness,
And three trees on the low sky,
And an old white horse galloped away in the meadow.
Then we came to a tavern with vine-leaves over the lintel,
Six hands at an open door dicing for pieces of silver,
And feet kicking the empty wine-skins.
But there was no information, and so we continued
And arrived at evening, not a moment too soon
Finding the place; it was (you may say) satisfactory.

All this was a long time ago, I remember,
And I would do it again, but set down
This: were we led all that way for
Birth or Death? There was a Birth, certainly,
We had evidence and no doubt. I have seen birth and death,
But had thought they were different; this Birth was
Hard and bitter agony for us, like Death, our death.
We returned to our places, these Kingdoms,
But no longer at ease here, in the old dispensation,
With an alien people clutching their gods.
I should be glad of another death.