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Domesticity is a thick fog in my house today. It smells like leek and potato soup (with a splash of sesame oil)on the stove, and yeasty bread rising in the oven. I’m a fool for a hot loaf of bread, and if I serve it with the soup the menfolk will do my bidding with nary a flinch or a whine.
They say the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. They are right. Pretty much. I know when I make the effort to cook a really tasty meal everyone in the house seems more compliant, and compliancy is a very good thing when you have teenagers.
The boys like to make sandwiches. They really like roast beef, but the deli stuff is $6+ a pound, and when your kid puts 1/3 pound of meat on his sandwich, that gets expensive. So! Because I am a Domestic Deity and well versed in such matters, I make their sandwich meat. Here’s how. It’s easy.
one 3 pound rump roast-don’t substitute, rump roast makes the best sandwiches because it’s very lean and easy to slice
Rub the outside all over with oil, then sprinkle very generously with seasoning salt (that Lawry’s stuff, or something like it, or Montreal Steak Seasoning)
Roast in a preheated 475 (yes, that’s right) degree oven for 45 minutes.
Take it out of the oven and let cool in the dish you cooked it in until it’s room tempurature.
Using a good sharp knife, slice it very thin across the grain. This is important, because if you cut with the grain it will be stringy and difficult to eat on a sandwich. On a rump roast, there is one side that is the end grain, it looks like a bundle of string ends. That’s where you slice.
The meat will probably still be a bit pinkish in the middle. I like it that way, and since what I like is the norm for the world, you should like it as well. Otherwise you are a deviant from the norm and should seek counseling immediately.
Sweet Daddio’s boss had to leave work early today, which means so will he (unless a dragon needs slaying or something). Whheee! I’ve promised him a tasty meal and he has promised me foot-therapy later on.
I wonder, if when he retires, I’ll be happy about it because he’ll be around, or if it will make me cranky because he’s always around. I know Mom likes having Dad around, because he’s pretty much in his shop all the time, tinkering on his MGB or making a gate for the garden. I’ll just have to make sure SD has his shop by the time he retires, and he can spend his time making dollhouses for the grandaughters.
*arguing with #4 about homework* I know…it’s easy for him. He has to put his spelling words in alphabetical order, and words come very, very easy to him. It’s pure redundancy, but one must learn to jump through the hoops to get on in this world. He loves the math, and the science, but words bore him. “Why can’t I jsut do it another time?” he whines. Sorry pumpkin. Do your homework. “I’m hungry!” Sorry sweety. You should have gotten a snack before it was time to do your homework. You can have something to eat when you’re finished. “Mom!” Sorry. You know the drill.
Mmm the soup smells good. Leeks and green onions, garlic and potatoes and chicken broth. I’ll sweeten the pot with a pint of cream shortly, and chop some fresh chives on top. I haven’t decided if the bread will be a loaf or rolls. Snce I put a splash of sesame oil in the soup, I’ll put some seeds on the bread.
An endorsement: Bulkfoods.com A great place to buy dried goods like sesame seeds, unsweetened coconut (a must for Thai food), spices, nuts, snack mixes (even those tasty Japanese mixes with the soy sauce based seasoning and bits of nori)Sometimes you can catch them in a good mood and shipping is free. It’s a real asset for food snobs like me, who live far, far from any retail store selling goodies like those.
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Weinerdog Bliss has a new name and a new member!
Trot on over there to meet Schmoo, newest member of the Weinerherd.
Now, the new name “Four Pups and a Puss” is stolen from a book called “Four Pups and a Worm”. I dithered around with names, and it was postulated that “4 Weiners and a Pussy” might work, but that was quickly vetoed as it might attract the wrong target demographic.
So for now, it’s 4 Pups and a Puss.
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For the dough:
1 cup of milk, warmed (NOT HOT! hot will kill the yeast)
2 eggs, room tempurature
1/2 stick (1/4 cup)of softened butter
Blend all this together and add
2 teaspoons yeast (or 1 of those little packages)
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
Stir well and let it sit for about 10 minutes, it will get foamy.
2 cups sifted all- purpose or bread flour
Stir well, then gradually add (1/4 cup at a time)
1 cup flour. Mix very well to make a sticky dough.
scatter 1 cup of flour on a clean countertop and dump the dough onto it.
Knead the dough (kind of a push and fold thing), incorporating the flour on the counter, add more flour if the dough gets sticky. Keep kneading and adding flour in small amounts until the dough is very smooth and not sticky at all, then knead some more. 10-15 minutes worth of kneading will make a wonderful smooth dough.
Oil your hands and coat the ball of dough with the oil. Put in in a bowl twice as big as the ball, cover with plastic, and put it in a warm place to rise for about an hour. I usually turn the oven on for a minute or two, then turn it off, and put the dough in there. When the dough has doubled in size, you can make it into a loaf or rolls or whatever.
For cinnamon bread (attention: cinnamon kills yeast, so you don’t want to mix it with the flour when you make the dough. Punch down the dough and take it out of the bowl. Flatten it into a rectangle about 18×12. Spread it with butter, and sprinkle with a blend of brown sugar and cinnamon. (1/2 cup brown sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon), add chopped nuts if you like, or raisins. Roll it into a log and put it on a greased cookie sheet, tucking under the ends.Spread a thin layer of butter all over the outside. Let rise for about 30 minutes, then bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for about 30 minutes. When it starts to smell marvelous, bake it for about 15 minutes more, covering with a piece of foil if you like , too keep it from getting too brown.
To make cinnamon rolls, to everything like you did with the loaf, but instead of putting it on a cookie sheet, get a piece of thread or dental floss about 18 inches long, and slice the log into 1-1/2 inch thick pieces. Melt the other 1/2 stick of butter and put it in the bottom of a square baking dish. Sprinkle 1/2 cup brown sugar mixed with 1 teaspoon cinnamon in with the butter, and add chopped nuts if you like. Lay the dough slices on top of the butter and sugar. Let rise 30-40 minutes, then bake at 375 degrees 20-25 minutes. Rub the finished rolls with a bit more butter, and (thisis important!) while they are still quite warm, tip them out onto a platter, so all the gooey stuff on the bottom is on top. If you wait until they’re cold, the gooey stuff is impossible to get out.
You house will smell marvelous and people will totally forgive you the messy bathrooms and funny odor coming from the back bedroom.
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Yes indeed, that’s me. Because today the laundry is done, the bathrooms are clean, and the floors are in a (relative) state of unsticky, I did something Excruciatingly Domestic. I Baked Bread. Not just any bread, either. No. I made a rich, sweet loaf of cinnamon bread, full of eggs and brown sugar and real-from-a-cow-not-a-factory butter.
First, I decided to make the bread on the way home from having to take #3 his backpack because he left it in my car yesterday. I made sure he felt guilt and remorse for making me actually get into my car and drive before I’d had a second cup of coffee. Anyway, once the decision was made,
And, say what you may about the wallpaper, my house smells MAGNIFICENT!
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1. The Misanthtropic: Name something you absolutely hate.
people who assume they know what other people are thinking.
2. The Meretricious: Expose something or someone that’s phony, fraudulent or bogus.
Any person who claims to know the mind of God.
3. The Malcontent: Name something you’re unhappy with.
My floors. They’re ugly.
4. The Meritorious: Give someone credit for something and name it if you can.
Dr. Thomas Lane Butts (it’s a common name in the South. deal with it), for teaching me that faith is a relationship, not a lifestyle.
5. The Mirror: See something good about yourself and name it.
I have a nice complexion.
6. The Make-Believe: Name something you wish for.
I wish I could teleport.
Now it’s your turn.
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Is it just me, or does Word Verification make you do it twice, even when you KNOW you got it right the first time?
Idea sparked by Nervous Thoughts on her blog:
Walmart Employee Exchange Program
Have you ever noticed that the Walmart employees are obviously Not From Around Here? My checkout clerk the other day was from Upstate New Yawk. The deli guy was from Arizona. Why on Earth would anyone from Upstate New York or Arizona be working at Walmart in East Bumfart, Georgia? Nervous Thought, in Michigan, noticed the same thing, with her Walmart People speaking with a southern accent. So I am asking everyone who lives anywhere that a Walmart lives, do your Walmart people come from another place? Is this a conspiracy to dilute regional mannersims by mixing up the cultural gene pool? Inquiring minds want to know. It’s another corporate plot to homogenize and dumb-down the populace so they’ll all buy stuff from Walmart.
Chicken parmesan for supper. Chicken breast pieces coated in italian seasoned bread crumbs and pan fried, covered in marinara sauce and cheese. Yum. Warm comfort food at it’s best.
I’ve rediscovered my old 35mm camera, lenses and all. I can’t find the owners manual, tho, so I’m going to have to find one somewhere.
There’s alot of stuff going around about body image, too thin, too fat, etc. Is there ever going to be a right way to look? Why is it women are so incredibly critical of themselves? I solve the problem by never looking in the mirror. That revelation freaked out my therapist, but insurance benefits had run out by then so we never got to work on it. His last advice to me was to spend 10 minutes every day looking in the mirror, telling myself I was lovely to see. I did it once, and it freaked me out so bad I’ve never done it since. That was 13 years ago. Now don’t get me wrong, I do look in the mirror, at my hair to make sure it’s combed, at my teeth to make sure there’s nothing stuck in them, or at my eyes to put on a bit of shadow. But the whole package? All at once? No. I know that logically, I’m respectable looking. People don’t stare or gag when they see me, and for that I am grateful. But my therapist told me to tell myself I was lovely, and I can’t do that.
Seen on an apron in a catalog that came today: Many have eaten (few have died).
I am considering the possibility of getting a tattoo. This is not new, as I have pondered on it since I was about 15. Back then (this would be 1980) it was still considered extremely alternative (to put it politely). If I got one, it would be smallish, of my own design, and some place inconspicuous. I’m thinking of a 3-ring emblem, the symbol of the triune God, with each ring being a celtic knotwork sort of thing, as I am (with the exception of a Kiowa great-great grandmother)Scottish. Sweet Daddio doesn’t have a problem with it, but is waiting for me to decide. I don’t know where I’d put it. I was thinking on my lower back, but someone warned me that’s a rawther painful spot. so perhaps between my shoulders? I’m not inclined to wear low-backed dresses, and swimsuits…eh. Who cares at the beach?
SD called and will be home in a hour. It’s nearly 7 now. I hate it when he works this late, because he just comes home, eats, goes to bed, then gets up and goes right back to work. The last 3 weeks he was at work between 75 and 80 hours each week. He averaged 13 hours a day, 6 days a week. Twice he went on on Sunday to do paperwork. He comes home smelling like God knows what chemical, tired from being on his feet the entire day, climbing up equipment, hauling heavy things around. If he were paid by the hour we’d be 2 tax brackets up. But, he’s not. He brings hom the same for an 80 hour week that he gets for a 40 hour week. Mind you, he’s well paid, but it would be nice if he could have more than an hour to spend with his family every night. He says the work load has started lifting, and he did have the entire weekend this past weekend. So I probably whould quit bellyaching, since his hard work enables me to sit on my duff at home, eating chocolate and watching reruns of 30 Minute Meals.
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Introducing The Daily Drudge, a new blog written by my oldest friend, Ruth, whom I’ve known longer than I’ve known Sweet Daddio and who is an inseperable part of this ridiculous life.
She and I have shared nearly every major event of the past 23 years, from car wrecks and intercontinental escapades, finding husbands and having children, rabbits and cats and working and dealing with other women and huge quantities of bread. We moan at each other about hips and that unsightly thing on our stomachs, and we tell each other how wonderful the other one is, when life starts overwhelming.
I don’t have a sister by birth, but she is better than that, because we picked each other out (once she got over me flirting with her then-fiance) and now, I can’t imagine life without her, even though she lives 3 hours away.
So, please welcome my very best girlfriend in the whole world! (leave her a hello on her blog, it’ll startle her.)
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Almost 6pm on Sunday, gin and tonic (with a whole key lime) on the left, dog on the right, irritating punk teenager inflicting his presence on me from behind.
This is to be a free association post because I am completely lacking the attention span to write anything substantive. (like that’s anything new)
Oh! We got a letter yesterday anouncing that #3′s band trip had been cancelled, and voided check returned. SD said “well! Let’s take that money not spent and get your 2 new garden beds built!” So we did. 2 trips to Lowes, 64 cinderblocks and 40 bags of topsoil and cow manure later I have 2 more vegetable beds. This pleases me. I purchased seeds as well, so when it is the right time I’ll have them and all. Squashes of assorted types, some summer and some winter, and golden beets, Kentucky Wonder green beans, morning glories, cardinal flowers, zinnias. Once they’re out, I’ll buy tomato, pepper and basil plants. There is a nice 2 foot strip of open area between the pathway and the fence where SD is going to build a long skinny bed that I can plant with more good things. Flowers, perhaps, or vining things to grow on the fence.
When I was a kid, I swore up and down I’d not garden the way my mother did. She dug into the ground, where bermudagrass and centipede grass could creep into the beds and invade. I said no way. I want raised beds, with landscape cloth on the ground between, covered with hay or pinestraw to keep the weeds out. No shortcuts, no scrounging for materials to build the beds. No. And so it is. My hnads stayed rough and calloused when I was a kid, from pulling up bermuda and centipede. “You help eat the food, you can help in the garden” was the philosophy. I don’t want my kids in the garden. It’s mine, and that they get to enjoy the fruits of it is incidental.
Schmoo has discovered the joys of a fenced in garden. The dogs can’t get to her (not that it really matters, I found her and 2 of the dogs snuggled together, asleep and looking like something out of a Disney movie). She chases leaves, probably poops in the soft dirt while I’m not watching, and bats at the tag end of string trellises.
Speaking of cat poop (I warned you this was a stream-of-conciousness post), Daisy has discovered the cookie…er, I mean litter box. I caught her sniffing the cat’s butt with this “Ooo! you smell like a cookie!” look on her face. Blech. There is nothing nastier than a shit-eating dog. She has always had that in her, tho. Lily, who’s dumb as a stump and vacuous as Paris Hilton won’t touch anything that isn’t straight out of the bag food. Rosie will eat kitty cookies, but with the furtiveness of a Weight-Watcher’s new recruit, and carries the guilt for hours if caught. Lacy probably eats them too, but she has such a “go-to-hell” attitude about anything you can’t tell if she’s done it or not. I guess the good news would be that I don’t have to clean the litter box out as often. Blech.
I want a Subway. Turkey breast with provolone, tomatoes, spinach, carrots, cucumbers and green peppers, oil and vinegar, salt and pepper, and oregano. On wheat. Now. Foot long, because I’m hungry and I want to feel full.
Instead of a subway, there is a pan full of Gortons Crunchy Fish Filets on the oven. It’s a piss-poor substitute for a subway, but since SD ran out in the middle of the evening last night to fetch me sushi, I am not going to even make a mild whine about wanting a big, vegetable packed sandwich. It was good, that sushi. I had a spicy tuna roll and a crunch roll. And a big ol’ pile of pickled ginger as well.
Other stuff got done today besides the garden beds. We have 2 utility rooms in this house. One is a 10×10 room houseing nothing but the hot water heater. Total wasted space, and would make an excellent laundry room with the right innovations. The other one is also about 10×10 and the game room and #3′s bedroom open off of it. It was full of shelves and accumulated nonsensical stuff that’s too good to throw away but not anything anyone would ever use. (telescope, anyone? curtain rods? 12-1/2 empty cans of paint?) We threw stuff out, put stuff in the attic, and moved all the shelves out of the 2nd room and into the empty 1st room. Now the utility room is actually a utility room, and the other room, you don’t feel like you’re walking through a utility room to get to the game room or bedroom. When #2 moves out in a couple of years, #3 will get his room and #3′s room will become SD’s office. The whole affair sounds like alot of work, but actually it wasn’t, given the thrill of throwing stuff away, and I’d done some preliminary work on Friday.
It’s been peculiar lately, things that seem like they would take all day to accomplish are done in an hour. I’ll have all this stuff plotted out that I’m going to do, figuring lots of swearing and sweat in, and assuming it will take half the day and many glasses of iced tea to accomplish. Then, because there are 2 teenage boys with strong backs and small minds to help, the garden beds get built in 30 minutes. The utility rooms get rearranged in an hour. And HOUR! Start to finish! So just what am I supposed to do for the rest of the day? Have sex? Write? Cook a roast?
How long is it going to take me to get stuff done once the kids leave home? Am I even going to be able to DO anything? Or will I be paralized for 2 weeks then have to take up a hobby? I figure I’ll take 2 weeks, and get bedrooms painted and stuff, then I’ll think about it some more, consider a new hobby, etc. It’s not that far off, kids all being gone. I’ve spent the last 19 years tending children, feeding people and doing their laundry, and there is at least another 10 to go. Given how fast the past 10 years have gone by, it’s no time at all. I could be a grandmother within 10 years. There’s a scary thought.
Mm this G&T is good. I recommend key limes highly.
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That got your attention, didn’t it.
Hospice Helps Dying Man Lose His Virginity (Fox News)
This 22 yr old man dying of muscular dystrophy wanted to experience sex before he died, saved up money, and found a sex worker who specialized in disabled client.
“It was not emotionally fulfilling, but the lady was very pleasant and very understanding. I do not know whether I would do it again. I would much rather find a girlfriend, but I have to be realistic.” he said.
Scott Peck wrote a novel that takes place in a nursing home, called “A Bed By The Window”. One of the sub-plots involves a young man in the same situation, and explores the ethics of sexuality.
It makes me think, about sex and all. It’s a fundamental part of our existance, a perfectly natural function. And, while I am hopelessly and completely monogamous, I can see how through our evolution monogamy ain’t necessarily all that. Certainly if you’re talking about spreading out the gene pool. (Looking at it biologically, not theologically)
I believe jealousy is a huge part of monogamy.
1. jealous resentment against a rival, a person enjoying success or advantage, etc., or against another’s success or advantage itself.
2. mental uneasiness from suspicion or fear of rivalry, unfaithfulness, etc., as in love or aims.
3. vigilance in maintaining or guarding something.
Now, when I think of jealousy, I think of ye olde green eyed monster, the one that make me (a girl) want to rip out someone’s (another girl’s) hair, or put alum in her douche, if she rubs up against my feller with a bit too much familiarity. (Fortunately for me, he tends to be completely oblivious to such ploys, me having brainwashed him all these 20 yrs) By definition, tho it’s more than that. Vigilance in maintaining or guarding something-that’s a great way to put it. Maintaining a relationship, perhaps, or guarding the integrity of your household/workplace/whatever. It is also the green eyed monster, which is (I believe) an evolutionary event that causes us to protect our genetic advantage.
Now, what that advantage is, can depend on who you are, your upbringing, all sorts of things. If it’s important to you that your children be physically attractive, then you’re going to look for a mate with the qualities you favor, fine build, the desired colored eyes, height, breadth of shoulder, that sort of thing. Me, I like tall men, with alot of hair. My husband, who also looked for a mate with qualities he liked, prefers a nice round ass and a defined waist. Some like boobs, some like athletic builds, others don’t even look at physique at all and look for brains, or musical talent.
We each have something that we find sexually desirable, and the diversity of opinion allows for a genetic diversity that ensures the ongoing health of the species. It’s a good thing.
I have no idea where this is going. I started out with a full cocktail glass of cosmopolitans and now I’m down to the last 1/2 inch.
Ok, sexual advantage. Supposedly there are physical characterisitics which can give an individual advantage over another person. For men, it can be obvious strength, or height (the better to peer over the waving grass to spy a predator?), or today, ability to provide well for a family, such as a good paying job, or skills that are in demand.Once asked of me was “Would you rather go out with a short bald guy who’s rich or a tall beefy guy who lays drywall for a living?” Duh. I’d rather go with the one who catches my reference to Blazing Saddles. They also have this thing about the size of their private parts. I am told that the men who say things like “it’s not the size, it’s the skill” are the selfsame ones who have insecurity about their size. That’s not something I go trolling through the mall about tho, asking if such things are true. You’d think we’d have outgrown that by now, given the fact that we all wear clothes, and have for quite some time. I know that I have never interviewed a candidate for Boyfriend and asked about such personal things.
For women, it’s hard to say. If you go by what the media says, the most physically attractive women look like they’ve been locked in a basement and fed celery for a year. But having polled the men in my life, the most attractive women are a bit meatier, with boobs and hips and all this evolutionary childbearing potential. Women’s physical attributes are much more evident, particularly with the current fashion of low-riding pants and tight shirts. Stereotypes, I know, and the whole Feminism Culture is working hard to obliderate them, but the fact is, men are (generally) attracted to women who look like they could have lots of babies with relatively little trouble. And they like boobs. It’s a simple fact. Men like boobs. “They’re fun to play with” I have been told. Not to mention fun to BE played with.
The whole point of this bit (if you could call it a point) is that sex is a natrual thing. Sexual attraction is natural, whether it’s hetero or homo. Whether it’s more fun with you and one other who you’ve committed to for life, or between you and however many all at once or one after the other. Biologically speaking, sex is a fundamental part of our existance as humans. These folk that get all het up about how we should only Do It once we’re married to one person of the opposite gender in a church before God and Community in a white dress and a cake the next hour are completely ignoring (excuse me! GOD-CREATED) natural sexuality.
OK…before you have a stroke and lay an egg, I am in complete approval of monogamy and fidelity. I do it all the time, and it works best for me and mine. I hope that my children will see it the same way. However, if they should, for whatever reason, decide that they don’t see things my way, I’ll get over it. They’re my kids, I love them ,and once they’re adults I will accept the decisions they make as having been made by an adult. Even if they’re wrong.
I will not, however, approve of egregiously devient behavior, like doing it with dogs or young children or whatever. That’s just wrong and gross and I don’t even need to go there.
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You know what, I’m tired of being cheerful and kind and goodhearted and all that. I’m sick of worrying about what people think.
I want to be a double barrelled 12 gauge bitch, and feel just fine while I’m doing it.
No guilt, no consequences except the ones that I want, no hurt feelings or nothin’.
I want a tattoo of a colorful snake wrapped around my leg, ankle to hip.
Enough with this pansy introspection. I want to be the center of the universe with everyone catering to my whims and me having no thought at all how they feel about it.
Because that’s how I feel about it all, right now. Where’s my drink?