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Triumph of the Mundane

Slow blogging at its finest

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Tostitos

It’s Not a Competition

But it does require effort and human nature makes comparison inevitable.

Friendship.

In the area of friendship, I find myself in a sweet spot these days. Over time I have unburdened myself of the needy and greedy. Now my contact list has only people who are delightful, talented, and generous of spirit. They challenge me, and therein lies the rub. While I decided these wonderful people worthy of my time, do I put sufficient effort into making myself worthy of their time?

For example, I recently had lunch with someone I hadn’t seen in a couple of years. Let’s just call her Wonder Woman. After she indulged my prattling litany of since-we-last-met woes, she shared what she’s been up to.

Thank goodness I quickly realized responding with interested, enthusiastic non-verbal noises was the smart option. Great job — Hmmm, Ooohhh. Serious yoga six days a week, four when time is tight — Aaahhh, hmmmm. Making art dolls, particularly (rightfully) proud of one of Lillian Moller Gilbreth, one of her role models. Hmmm?

Ms. Gilbreth was a woman of accomplishment in home and work in the early- to mid-20th century. Among other important things, she found time to invent the foot pedal trash can and develop the kitchen work triangle. Wikipedia has a good entry on her, worth a read. Wonder Woman’s art doll of Ms. Gilbreth has a tipped-up toe poised to step on a trash can pedal.

Let me be clear: There was no bragging in Wonder Woman’s comments, simply sharing her life. Still, I was exhausted just listening. That’s when the measuring-up anxiety crept in.

Thank goodness I didn’t blurt out. . .

I found a Tostito chip in the shape of a cat!

Hmmm. Ooohhh.

Sigh. I really need to get out more.

Meanwhile, I best head to the library and scan my podcasts — since a bit of humor and reading/listening suggestions seem to be my strongest contributions. And I need to stay on top of those to stay in the good graces of my friends.

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Holiday Cheer and Fun With Food

Christmas kisses

Just opened the last bag of Holiday Kisses. We picked up a handful of these on a luckily timed trip to Target; they had just been marked down about 80 percent. Cheap, cheap, cheap!

And using my clever consumption method, I stretch each bag to the max. It’s a diet trick, too.

Unwrap two pieces and insert in mouth. Hold to roof of mouth and allow to melt.

Nits not ewey nu nalk win nuu nu nis, nut wa noclic laps amut nen nu fiteen mints as nit mets so nuu eet liss.

That’s my only strange eating habit. No, wait. I also like to bite Tostitos tortilla chips into the shape of Minnesota.

original chip at angle

That’s it. Really. Happy Holidays – winter and summer!

Food Pass-Fail 5, the Trifecta

Wrapping up with Pass, Fail, and Incomplete.

My relationship with complexity pegs the extremes. The idea of immersing myself in a difficult task is so deeply appealing. The reality of doing so, meh, not always so much.

Cooking is a prime example.

Ice cream

Pass.

The ice cream is a sure and solid A; missed an A+ for flavor strength.

The plan is to serve up only homemade ice cream summer. For ease I used Vanilla Bean Paste from the ab-fab local spice shop Allspice). Guessed at the amount and went too light. Easy enough to improve next time.

Even did a by-chance science experiment. Chilled one cooling tub in the upstairs freezer (not as cold) and one in the chest freezer downstairs (deep freeze). The churning took at least 5 minutes less in the super-chilled tub. But the less-cold tub added more volume with the extra time and has a lighter feel. Also, colder-tub batch chilled about 4 hours; the other batch chilled overnight before putting it in the ice cream maker.

Overall, worth the time and effort.

Rye bread. Incomplete.

Caraway seed

Finding the right flour required visits to several stores, and not sure what I bought is the best choice. For a first go, ordering a big bag off the interwebs seems folly.

Then the weather went chilly so starting the starter in a cold house seemed an exercise in futility. Mission temporarily scrubbed.

But a bowl is on the counter so that qualifies for an incomplete.

I’ll end this project on a glorious, uncomplicated fail:

Chip shelf

Lest anyone mistake us for food purists of any stripe,  please note the above. Our love of Tostitos chips knows no bounds. The only thing we’re fussy about is the variety: Restaurant style, please! Whenever they go on sale (3 for $10 or the ever-coveted, rarely seen 3 for $9), we stock up. Clearly there was a recent sale, so the hubs added a shelf in the basement specifically to hold the bounty. Even considering unfailingly regular consumption, this perfect corporate concoction of oil, salt, and probably a touch of sugar does not lose its appeal. And it comes in Party Size — Cheers!

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