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Wednesday, February 04, 2015

Food

I tend to jump around in what I focus on when I'm attempting to improve.  Lately my attention has been on food.  I may have mentioned that I want to take my supper (lunch?  food I eat at work) from things I have made here at home rather than continuing to buy pre-made meals.  I am so out of the habit of cooking that it is difficult to remember to fit it in.  Yeah, really.  I live alone, so that is my excuse.

This past week I took my lunch all 4 nights.  The weeks before I averaged between 1-3 nights of home made food.  I'm throwing out a lot of questionable food from my fridge.  That leaves room for the fresh stuff.  One day a couple of weeks ago I bought a Costco rotisserie chicken.  I pulled the legs off and put the rest into a ziplock freezer bag and shoved it in the freezer to be dealt with later.  It was really good (perhaps not healthy, but that is step 2 (or 3 or 4).  On my first night off  this week I took it out of the freezer and put it in the fridge to defrost.  This being my last night off I realized I need to do 'something' with it.  So I pulled all the meat (well, most of it, this is a learning experience) and put the bones and skin in a pot with water on low heat on the stove.  I hope to have what the new kids call 'bone broth' these days by the time I have to go to bed.  I'll strain it and put it... somewhere.  Probably the freezer until I can do something else with it.  The meat will be made into chicken salad and I've already had a chicken fajita.  Last week the menu was based around a can of salmon, this week chicken, the week before chili.  I'm about ready to cycle back to chili.  However, some pork chops with some mashed sweet potato also sound good, so maybe another trip to Costco and Ranch Market are in order.

I made lentil soup last week, and added some curry powder (a bit too much) for the first time.  It morphed into dal, so I made some rice and that was supper for 2 nights.  I took some to Favorite Neighbor an she wasn't impressed.  It was the first time she had ever had curry.    I don't think we will be hitting any Indian restaurants on our evenings out.  The rest went into the freezer.  Maybe in a couple of weeks I'll be ready for it again.  The freezer is getting full.

Last night Rod and Favorite Neighbor and a couple of other neighbors who we scooped up to go along went to a Mexican restaurant on the back side of South Mountain called Los Dos Molinos.  It was a nice place and kinda fun.  Food was good, company was even better.  A fun night for some of us who don't get out a lot.  I'm enjoying the Supper Club as I've called it.

On another note, Mom will be here in a couple of weeks to visit for 2 weeks.  More on that as it progresses.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

WIP - Baby blanket done



I'm lazy tonight.  I don't think that the image is clickable,  and it is very dark.  However, this is the baby blanket I've been working on.  As soon as it is dry (tomorrow?) I'll box it up and send it to the new mother-to-be.  Yarn is I Love This Yarn from hobby lobby.  It is nice and soft, but had some knots in the middle of the skeins that were not appreciated.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Meeting update

I'm still employed, the meeting with the manager was just a formality to say he was releasing a survey to me to fill out that goes to upper management.  Part of the plan that 'engages' employee satisfaction as one of the core values.  He did say that I seem to be doing fine and in March we will talk about officially moving me to the DBA section and get my raise going.

My back was killing me last night and I would have come home if I hadn't needed to stay for the meeting.  I came home and slept 7 hours straight, not even moving I don't think.  I feel a lot better now.

That's all that is going on for now.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Super club and other updates

I am a loner, especially the past 5 or so years since I left Nashville.  I just haven't been any place long enough to settle in and find a group of like minded folks.  I read blogs, and my most consistent friends are all online these days.  Working nights doesn't help in that.  When Favorite Neighbor came back with family (son and daughter-in-law) in November I was swept up and made a part of their family.  I kinda remembered what that was like.  I had been commenting on Rod's blog : http://retiredrod.blogspot.com/ and we had emailed back and forth, so while making plans to go out to eat at a local place I got in touch with him and he joined the family.  Now that it is just Favorite Neighbor and Rod and I we still go out and find neat places to have supper.  Luckily both of them are night owls so the accommodate the fact that I eat late-ish.  Both Rod and I drive Jeeps, and Favorite Neighbor is 88 and shorter than I am.  We found the key is to put her in the front seat where there is a grab bar on the dash, and to carry a small stool for her to step up on.  She is game to go for it and hops right in.  We are currently in search of some spaghetti that she had at a catered talk here at the park.  It may take us a few tries to find the actual restaurant.   The address is scribbled on some paper somewhere in her home.  When Rod gets back from the Q we will try again.  We may even see if more folks want to join in.  So far everyone is a winter resident except me.  I'm thinking it will seem even quieter around here next summer.

I would like to make the Blogger get together in Q on Saturday, but I'm working.  Well, I think I will be.  I got a call from my supervisor asking me to come in a half hour late as the manager wants to talk to me Friday morning before I leave, which means we meet at 6am , the time I usually leave.  I'm hoping that he will be telling me how great I'm doing against what everyone thought I'd be able to do, and that I'll get a raise.  Reality is such that as a precaution I'll empty out my locker that night anyway.  This is something I do before every manager meeting.  He just shakes his head.  I made a big leap, knowledge -wise transferring from the Systems side of things to the Data Base Administration side.  I'm enjoying it, but who knows how it is going in the scheme of corporate America where I work.

I will have the baby blanket I've been working on finished in about another hour.  Then I will go back to working on my sweater.  The blanket has ended up being pretty.  I hope the lady and baby it is for enjoy it as much as I've enjoyed making it.  Pictures will happen.  Really.  I found my tablecloths that I want to use as background to set off the things I knit.  No more beige sweaters photographed against a beige carpet...

I'll let y'all know what happens Friday morning at work. 

Monday, January 05, 2015

It's a start

When I got home from work this morning I decided to try something I read about on a message board last night, making caramelized onions.  I've been wanting to make some things that use onions, and I have 2 that I bought awhile ago.  Previously I just used the dried kind you get in a shaker at the grocery.  I'm basically a heathen when I cook.  But, I wanted to actually use the onions I had and not throw them out like I did the majority of the vegetables I bought at the same time.

I came home and chopped one onion, put it in the small crock pot I have and poured a generous glug of avocado oil over it all, stirred it, turned on the crock pot and went to bed.  I have indeed turned out with caramelized onions, ready to put into the meatloaf and/or salmon patties and/or muffin tin egg casserole I may or may not make.  I portioned them into some of my silicone muffin holders (they aren't 'papers' as they are silicone...) and put them in the freezer for now.  I'll put the individual portions into a baggie (hopefully) and I'm rocking the cooking thing again.  For now.

My sleep patterns are still messed up from my time in Las Vegas, and I'm due to head back again on Monday, a week from today.  I may just stay on the split sleeping pattern that has me getting up in the middle of the day for awhile.  I need to do some shopping that has to happen when stores are open anyway.  Otherwise I just lay in bed for 12 hours and don't really sleep and then I'm trashed while I'm at work that night.  This shift is totally perfect for where I work, but is not so great outside of work.  For now I'll go with what works for work as it is so much better than it was before I transferred.

And so this is the mundane trials of my current life.  I laugh when other bloggers apologize for not having exciting lives to write about.  I think we all pretty much have boring lives on a day to day basis, with periods of excitement thrown in to make us appreciate the boring times.

Friday, January 02, 2015

Not so forward progress

So, I did not cook yesterday, and ended up going to the grocery on the way into work after all.  When I went to record the amount spent on the food, the receipt said:  $6.66.  A reminder to me that in self improvement, the Devil is indeed in the details.  I came home and put the salmon in the oven and started oatmeal to take for breakfast.  The vegetables are too far gone to bake, so it will be the frozen broccoli.  I came in a started playing computer games, forgetting the oatmeal.  Luckily I remembered in time and I was able to use all of it after all.  I made 2 bowls of it, and I use old fashioned oatmeal that needs to actually cook, along with cinnamon, cardamon, craisens, almonds, and I'll add blue agave syrup before leaving tonight for work.

I am going to remove a few of the blogs from my side bar.  One hasn't been there long.  I enjoy his somewhat rough writing, but in his title he used some vulgar language.  It is one thing for me to have it in the blog if the writer wishes, but the title is a a bit too public for me.  I do still enjoy his blog, but I try to keep this place family friendly.

In other changes, I've had a comment of mine on another person's blog removed.  I used to say that I am much nicer online than I am in person, but perhaps this isn't true so much now.  I'm not good at social situations, and apparently I'm also not good at knowing what to say when.  Some folks only want a certain type of comment, and I don't pick up the ques it seems and overstep the bounds.  Not the first time this has happened.  So, to be sure not to offend the folks whose blogs I read I probably won't be commenting much anymore.  Not that I was doing a lot of it anyway.  I'm still here reading.  I'm not mad or anything, their blog their rules.  I just am not sure anymore how I'm perceived online and I think it is best to keep my mouth shut in other folks' homes.  My own blog, and on message boards where I hang out that encourage discourse, I'm still gonna be myself.

Oh, I finally got around to fixing the 'I'm not a robot' foolishness that blogger put in.  I don't like the passive aggressive way they came in and changed how I had it set up but the platform is free and until I get around to programming my own blog interface (which I may at some point...) I guess I play by their rules.

Thursday, January 01, 2015

New Year, New Day

My goals this year are pretty undefined in the specifics.  I have a  general idea of where I'd like to end up on many issues, and a basic idea of how to start the process to get there.  It involves a lot of getting off my ass and doing things, moderation in all things, and just doing the next right thing.  Forward progress is the plan.

At 4am on New Year's Day there isn't a lot of activity in the park here, other than me and my cats.  I walked down to get a gallon of water from the 25 cent dispenser and most mobile homes and rv's were dark, except for the ones that usually leave some kind of light on all the time.  It is damp and chilly and no good reason for walking around so I came home and took off the coat and got sedentary again.  Remembering my above goal I am now updating here.  I did finish dishes earlier, and put away the laundry finally.  If I can get motivated I'll cook the last of the frozen salmon from Costco, along with some potatoes and either yams or brocolli, I have both.  Probably, though, I'll just keep eating the cookies Mom sent and end up taking bean and cheese wrapped in the tortillas I got yesterday to work tomorrow night.  A goal is to take my supper more often.

I have begun work on a new expense tracking template.  I am wondering where my money goes and where I need to back off of spending (other than the obvious...) and my 10 year old template has been reworked so much as my categories have changed that I decided to start fresh.  It will be a work in progress, done in Open Office 4's version of excel, called calc.  I also want to download the Pimsleur lessons to my new phone now that I have room.  May as well kill the down time at work working on my Spanish as well as knitting.

I did end up with a new phone.  I am being totally assimilated into US culture.  I ended up with the top of the line Consumer Cellular smart phone (not counting the i-stuff).  I'm sort of happy with it, but some things I need to tweek.  It would be the same with any current phone as 'they' like to change the basic stuff that worked just fine in prior versions.  It is nice to have the maps function work correctly.  I am not too happy that everything wants access to my location, including games.  Big Brother has arrived and knows where I am at all times.  That is, when I remember my phone, which is still an issue as it just isn't that big a deal to me.  I use email and Skype mostly and got the smart phone more as a game/e-reader/podcast & music machine.  It just also happens to have a phone and messaging on it.  With the 4G data I blew past my normal $2.50/mo allotment and ended up 2 levels up at $10/mo in the first hour of playing with it.  I have moderated my excitement with data and will hopefully level out someplace in between.

And so my resolution to post more frequently gets off to a good start.  I'm going for quantity, not particularly quality, as is obvious.