Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Bird Flu Anyone?

Today's Soundtrack: Copeland - Beneath Medicine Tree
Today's Mood: Sick & Tired, but surprisingly happy with where I am in life

I spent the weekend before Christmas through the 29th or 30th of December sick as a dog and unable to talk (I could squeak a little, but you had to listen hard to understand me). Some would have found my inability to talk a gift (to them, of course). I, however, found it to be frustrating, annoying and painful. Particularly since I still needed to make contact with customers to wrap up some end of year business. My throat felt like it was gonna fall off. Right after my body.

Anyway, come New Year's Eve, I was still feeling a little sick, but not enough to blow off a friend's party for a second year in a row. Besides, I figured, I had taken the three days after New Year's Day as vacation days, so I figured I'd have time to rest.

I lost my voice again on New Year's Eve after spending most of the evening sitting out on my friend's back deck huddled over his fire pit. So....cold air and smoke. Not my smartest decision to date, but it was a good time.

Fast forward to today, and I am once again....sick as a dog. Absolutely miserable. Whatever this is does not seem to want to go away. As an adult it's easy to forget how awful a sore throat feels. Until you feel it again. Then it all comes right back.

And so, once again, I'm trying to get a doctor's appointment so I can get some meds to finally recover from this yuckiness. For good, I hope. Unfortunately, it seems that doctors tend to be closed to new patients at the beginning of the year. Which I should have remembered from last year (I tend to get sick every year around Christmas. Good times. And no, I haven't bothered to find a Primary Care Physician, for which I am today kicking myself).

I'm beginning to wonder if maybe it's the Bird Flu. Or the Plague. Or Ebola. Or something equally heinous. Who knows? But I feel awful. Guess I'll find out, if I can ever manage to get a flipping doctor's appointment.

Update: I found a great doctor, close by, with walk-in hours from 7:30 - 8:30AM on Weekdays (early, but it's the best I could do). Thinking this will be my primary care physician, too. Also, it's not the Bird Flu! It's just a bad sinus infection! I'm gonna live!

Saturday, January 5, 2008

The Best Ever....Movie Lines

I love Bridget Jones' Diary. In large part because I am hopelessly in love with Colin Firth and refuse to see him as anything less than the delectable Lord Darcy.

Anywho, so I just turned to the Biography channel (one of my favorites) and oddly enough, it's showing Bridget Jones' Diary. And to my delight I "arrived" in time to see what are probably the best lines ever to be uttered on film.

Mark Darcy: I don't think you're an idiot at all. I mean, there are elements of the ridiculous about you. Your mother's pretty interesting. And you really are an appallingly bad public speaker. And, um, you tend to let whatever's in your head come out of your mouth without much consideration of the consequences... But the thing is, um, what I'm trying to say, very inarticulately, is that, um, in fact, perhaps despite appearances, I like you, very much.

Bridget: Ah, apart from the smoking and the drinking, the vulgar mother and... ah, the verbal diarrhea.

Mark Darcy: No, I like you very much. Just as you are.

What woman wouldn't LOVE to hear those words come from the mouth of a man she adores. Particularly one as smoking hot as Lord Darcy, errrr...Mark Darcy I mean. It's what every woman secretly wishes for. A man who will love her. Just as she is.

Unfortunately, I am inclined to believe that it only happens in the movies. That's okay. It's better than nothing.

Dinner for Two

Last night I accomplished an admirable feat. I cooked an entire meal without dirtying one pot or pan! I didn't even dirty a plate!

"How?", you ask. Well I'll tell you. Broil Salmon on foil in the oven, microwave bake the pre-wrapped potatoes, and steam asparagus in those new microwave steaming bags.

It was lovely! And delicious! And minimal clean-up!

Ahhh, a truly perfect evening.

Monday, December 31, 2007

What a Difference a Year Makes

Wow. I'm sitting here getting ready to go to my friend's annual New Year's Eve party. So different from how things were last year. I was in so much pain at the end of last year. Life was tough and I felt so lost and untethered. And so alone.

And then I started "The Purpose Driven Life" and things began to change. I began to realize that my life really was not about me and my desires. And as long as I made it about me I would never be fulfilled or at peace. These days I breathe easier; I smile more easily and sometimes the smile is even genuine. (0: I love better, I forgive better. I allow myself to be forgiven. My whole life has changed. In one year. So, yeah, what a difference a year makes.

To those I know and love and to those I don't know...I hope that your new year is better than your last. I pray that you'll have peace and joy and find your place in the world. And I pray that your dreams come true.

Happy New Year!!!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Some Cheese with that Whine???

Two days after Christmas and I have lost my voice. AHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!

I'm trying to get work done before the end of this year and this happens! It's not fair!

What if I have something particularly wise or brilliant to say? What if I come up with the answer to the question of life or the best joke ever?

So now not only do I get to feel like crap, I can't even complain about it!

It's not faaaaaaaaaiiiiiiiiirrrrrrrrr!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Tastebud Boggling Strawberries n' Shortcake

Not to outdo myself, but being sick on Christmas means that I missed Christmas dessert. )0: I had gone to the trouble of spending $5.00 on out of season strawberries so that I could make strawberry shortcake.

Anyway, I decided to make it tonight. I developed a tasty little recipe for macerated berries (taste tested by an expert who is not me) that makes an incredible sauce that I pour over buttermilk biscuits and Haagen Daz Vanilla ice cream and top with extra creamy whipped cream. Not exactly what one would call low-fat, but definitely delectable.

Macerated Strawberries...

1 cup halved strawberries
2-3 tbsp salted butter
1 tsp white granulated sugar
1 tbsp light brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp lemon juice

Melt 2 tbsp butter in a saucepan on low
Throw in the halved strawberries
Add sugars, cinnamon and lemon juice
Stir and let strawberries break down and create sauce (about 3 minutes)
Turn off the saucepan and throw in the last tbsp of butter
Let sauce sit for 2 - 3 minutes

...'n Shortcake

Serve over buttermilk biscuits and ice cream and top with whipped cream

My So Awesome Pasta e Fagioli

Since this blog is supposed to be all about me me me, I thought I would share how incredibly talented I am. I mean I can cook, bake, braise, glaze, roast, toast...I think you get the idea.

Anyway, I made this amazing Pasta e Fagioli (Italian Pasta & Bean Soup) for lunch today (I'm sick and I am so tired of chicken noodle soup that I could just scream). I got the recipe off of the internet awhile back and tweaked it a bit. So I just thought I'd share it.

Bon Appetit!

Pasta e Fagioli

1 pound ground beef (85% lean)
1 small onion, diced (1 cup)
3 large carrots, julienned (1 cup)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 14.5-ounce cans crushed tomatoes
1 15-ounce can cannelloni beans (with liquid)
1 15-ounce can navy beans (with liquid)
1 15-ounce can tomato sauce
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon basil
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/2 pound (1/2 pkg.) ditali pasta

1. Brown the ground beef in a large saucepan or pot over medium heat.
2. Add onion, carrots and garlic and sauté for 10 minutes.
3. Add remaining ingredients, except pasta, and simmer for 1 hour.
4. About 50 minutes into simmer time, cook the pasta in 1 1/2 to 2 quarts of boiling water over high heat. Cook for 10 minutes or just until pasta is al dente, or slightly tough. Drain.
5. Add the pasta to the large pot of soup. Simmer for 5-10 minutes and serve.

If you'd like, top with freshly shaved parmesan cheese or throw in some croutons for variety.