Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Ice Cream Injury and Great Curry Disaster

I have a couple of silly food stories to share so I thought I would lump them together here...

The Ice Cream Injury
The ice cream injury story is quick and funny...I was deperately trying to pry a rivulet of peanut butter out of my Friendly's ice cream on Sunday. I dug and dug with the ice cream scoop, but to no avail. I finally got my fingers in there to try and grab it and snap it. That tenacious peanut butter ribbon pulled my nail back and separated it from the nail bed. OUCH! Boy, did it hurt! Now, it is ridiculously hard for me to type with my pointer finger. Adds a whole new meaning to the concept of foods which are dangerous to your health.

The Great Curry Disaster
Once a month or so, my company has a potluck lunch. Everybody prepares some food to bring in and we gather in the kitchen to share it. It's a nice idea and brings a hominess to a sometimes overly corporate environment. In December, the theme for the meal was Indian. A bunch of folks responded...I'll bring nan...I'll bring rice...I'll bring a salad...etc...I decided to go for it and make a chicken coconut curry.

That Monday, I went shopping. Only the best for my curry! I bought organic chicken, gorgeous golden chicken stock, potatoes, coconut milk, and a myriad of eastern spices...Marco Polo would have been proud. I stood at the sink chopping for hours. I made a HUGE pot of Indian basmati to go with my curry. I cut each and every component of the curry into uniform, bite sized pieces. It was the kind of attention to detail and recipe that is seldom seen at my hand...I made enough so that my father, who adores curry, and I could have it for dinner and then I could bring the leftover vat of it in the next morning in the crock pot and keep it temptingly warm all day long. The smell of exotic curry and sweet coconut would fill the kitchen and, like cartoon characters on a visible stream of odor, my colleagues would float in, led by their noses. It was a lovely fantasy.

SCREEEEEEEEEEEECH...that's the sound of my dream derailing as over cooked the basmati. Oh well, I figured, I don't need perfect rice, once this curry is dumped all over it, no one will notice! The curry opened to rave reviews from my father. It was awesome. All the attention and care, coupled with the extravagant ingredients made it a truly special dish.

After dinner, as my father was doing the dishes, asked if I would like him to decant the curry into the crock of the crock pot. Sure, I said, why not? And so, he did, right into the sink. The crock slipped and the curry dumped, 97% of it landing in the sink. There was a moment that he grasped the hot, spilled stuff in his fingers before giving up. It was too much. It was gone. He looked like he might cry, so I reassured him that at least we got to eat it and there was another guy bringing in lamb vindalu anyway, so not to worry.

I showed up early the next morning, frown on my face, to confess that I had dumped my curry. The host of the potluck's face went white. What? What is it? He I was carrying my vindalu to the car, the dog jumped up on me and knocked it out of my hands and it landed on the driveway. What horrid luck! We had to laugh. It was seemingly incomprehensible. Needless to say, our kitchen (and probably his dog and driveway) smelled like curry for a long, long time.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Manifest Destiny

Today, Patrick and I embark on the unconventional phase of our marriage. We are taking a mutual break, a separation. We are doing it because I am tired of always being the leader and he is tired of always being the follower. We need to shake things up. We are moving. We are selling our house. We are starting something new. We tried tweaking little things in our marriage, trying to even out the uneven division of power, but we need (to quote my husband) broad strokes.

What does broad strokes mean? It means we need to upend our life, head over teakettle, in order to change our dynamic. Patrick is heading off to our new area, the Adirondacks, by himself. He is in the advance party. He will get established up there, we will join him after he has created a new environment for himself and us.

It reminds me of the days of manifest destiny and the pioneers who boldly mobilized to find a new life. Passing into the unknown is scary for sure, but we have found that this little house in the suburbs doesn't work for us. We need to be surrounded by nature. We need to find something new...and this time, Patrick needs to lead us. As Death Cab for Cutie says, I will follow you into the dark.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Dipping my Eyeballs in Kosher Salt

That is what it feels like in the morning around here. I am up way too late trying to grab some me time and then when Elena comes to wake me at 5-o-f-ing-early-clock, I get really salty and peeved. It's a bad cycle. God forbid I should have a nap, because it's then that much harder to fall asleep. When I wake up, I feel as if I have only been asleep for 7 and a half minutes and my eyes feel like I have dipped them in kosher salt. Fun times.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Is It Me...

Or is the Google word verification getting next to impossible lately? I just want to leave a comment, not get into a freakin' vault...

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Wow...That's What I Call a Hiatus...

Or is it "an Hiatus"? And, should the quotes be before or after the question mark? Well, hello there. I'm baaaaaaaaaaaackkkkkkkk...

...for now. I have two kids who are busy, loud and sometimes, well, needy little things. I have a husband who is taking some time and working on himself. He has spent a lot of his life caring about others and what they think, he's going through a bit of a self-renaissance. Hooray for for his timing.

Our six month old, who had numerous problems in the GI area seems to be doing MUCH, MUCH better. He's overall jovial and sweet. He has a smile that lights up a room. He's a little mover lately scooting around, salamander-style, on his belly. His only shortcoming at present seems to be that he is highly sensitive. He doesn't like noise and gets noticeably ticked when you talk, whisper or even gesture while he is having his bottle. I am learning to be quiet. This is not something that comes naturally to me, but I am trying.

Speaking of quiet, Elena is giving us none lately. She is going through a talkative phase, or let's hope it's a phase, otherwise we will say she is taking after Mommy. She's going through the typical-terrible-two-and-a-halfs. My favorite thing about this age is the capriciousness. It is done with such nuance...(heavily sarcastic)...see below:

Elena: Don't TALK AT ME MOMMY!!

Me: I didn't say a thing, though...

Elena: I said I not want you to talk at me. I don't care about you.

Me: Um...OK...I'll just sit here and...

Elena: Mommy, what you say?


Elena: I want some Rice Milk.

Me: OK

Elena: I not want it...I not want it...

Me: OK

Elena: I want some Rice Milk, Mommy!! (getting impatient and angry)

Me: OK (getting up getting cup)

Elena: No...I not want it, I want juice, I said.

There are so many more examples, but I will pause there. So, now, I find myself up in the middle of the night while it is quiet and calm. Why? To be alone. Ahhhhhhhhh....sweet alone time, where have you been all my life?