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Not About My Aches and Lame

People who complain about their aches and pains are tiresome. However, today is Lame Post Friday and I can do whatever I want.

I suppose that is not exactly true. If I want to be strictly accurate, I would say I can post whatever I want to post. Oh, all right, that much is true every day. Never mind, let’s get on with today’s post so I can get back to enjoying my Friday.

Hmm, does that make this an ironic post: I will complain about my aches and pains then get back to enjoying myself? That might call for some half-baked philosophy to answer. Can we truly enjoy ourselves through pain? Does overcoming pain enhance or detract from our enjoyment? In short, does pain make us better people or is that just a rationalization we use to help us feel better about the pain?

What brought all this on was that my day of enjoyment with my dear husband has been overshadowed by a migraine. It started out as a sinus twinge when I woke up. I had some coffee and hoped for the best. Breakfast at Crazy Otto’s Diner kind of sort of helped. Then we took Tabby for a walk in the cold wind and the pain got worse.

Undaunted, I picked up my notebook and the map I had printed off the computer, and we set out. Butternut Barn Primitives and Dyn’s Cider Mill. My headache felt a little worse. I got some hot cider at Dyn’s. Sipping it helped. Fly Creek Cider Mill, Rustic Ridge Winery. The headache returned as soon as I had finished the cider. I resolutely ignored it and managed to enjoy the Mill and the Winery.

As we drove home the headache got worse and turned into a full-blown migraine with light sensitivity and upset stomach. When we got home I aet a few corn chips, so as not to have an empty stomach, and took some Migraine Relief and a nap. Getting up from the nap and asking Steven to make some coffee (Pumpkin Spice!), my headache seems to be dissipating. Again, I hope for the best.

I intend to write blog posts about each stop on the trip as well as the trip itself. Right now, this is my post. Thank you for playing.

It’s Pouring Rain and I’m Cooking Sausage

When I said I would try not to have a Wuss-out Wednesday this week, I did not say anything about not having a Non-Sequitur Thursday. For one thing, today is my Friday. What could be more non-sequitur than that? Oh, I suppose a few things. Enlighten me, if you feel you must.

It actually feels more like a Tired Thursday, but that doesn’t have the same alliterative ring that Tired Tuesday does. I did try to write something during the day at work. I opened my notebook, took out a pen and turned to a blank page. In between breaks (you know, while I was working), I thought about what I could write. The result was a few more paragraphs on my novel. Not good paragraphs. That novel is at kind of a standstill, but I’m still plugging away. I am determined to bring it to some sort of a conclusion.

After work I went to the grocery store. I bought plenty of ingredients for a few good cooking posts by the end of the weekend. And when I say “good,” I mean I expect the food to taste good. I make no guarantees about the writing (although I flatter myself that I am not contemptible in that department).

It was raining when I left work, so I thought I was off the hook for walking Tabby. The rain stopped by the time I got home but looked ready to start up again at any excuse. Tabby doesn’t like to walk in the rain. I was afraid if we started our walk and the rain started back up that Tabby would stand still and look at me, expecting to be magically and instantly transported back home.

Still, she was so excited to see me and did seem to expect an adventure. I thought, oh hell, it’ll be something to write a blog post about. We set out. It almost immediately began to rain again but very lightly. For once Tabby didn’t seem to notice. I had put on a warm jacket and had the hood up, so I was fairly comfortable, except for my back.

Like many people who are overweight and over 40, I suffer from back pain. Today I blame work. I spent the morning standing and the afternoon sitting. My back likes it better when I am up and down. I thought, this is OK. A walk always helps. Today, not so much. So we only walked for a block. At least Tabby seemed to enjoy it.

And that has been my Thursday/Friday. I see this bit of blathering on has gotten my word count over 400. I’ll just slap a kicky headline on and call it a day. Hope to see you on Lame Post Friday.

Just one quick note: Do you find this is more Stream of Consciousness than Non Sequitur? I’m afraid it might be.

Big Plans, Small Post

I’m taking Friday off, so that makes Wednesday my Thursday, right? I bring the matter up, because I threatened yesterday (Tired Tuesday) to have a Wuss-out Wednesday today. In a desperate attempt to avoid that eventuality, I am sitting at work (before my shift starts, not while I’m on the clock, peanut gallery), scribbling in my notebook (the paper, spiral-bound kind; I’m a creature of the previous century), hoping to come up with something.

My husband has Friday off as well. We plan to spend at least part of the day having Mohawk Valley adventures. First we’ll head to Richfield Springs, NY and stop at Dyn’s Cider Mill. I want to get a bag of Dyn’s Popcorn. Regular readers may remember that I make my popcorn on the stove in a pot with oil and melt real butter to put on it. Dyn’s Popcorn is excellent for the purpose.

From there we thought we’d go to Fly Creek Cider Mill, another favorite stop of ours. Steven also suggested that either before Fly Creek or on our way home we stop at Butternut Barn Primitives, 427 Butternut Rd., Richfield Springs, a place we’ve never been to but have heard good things about.

While pondering our plan, I wondered about what other new places we could go. I remembered the Cooperstown Beverage Trail. I didn’t think we could do the whole trail, but perhaps we could check one or two of the stops on it. I thought I had seen a booklet about it at Gems Along the Mohawk in Herkimer.

I did not find information about the Beverage Trail, but in between the retail shops and the Waterfront Grille, there are many fliers about various attractions. I picked up a handful. Now we have lots of ideas!

So things are looking good for future blog posts. I hope to have several business and attractions to write about. In the meantime, I hope this preview of coming attractions will do for now.

I Want to Watch World’s Dumbest!

It is a sad thing to be Tired on Tuesday when you are pretty sure you are going to Wuss-out on Wednesday. And yet, here I am.

As usual, I knew this would happen. I knew I should write a blog post while at work today. But there were cryptogram puzzles to solve and husbands to call (OK, just one husband; I thought it would be more symmetrical to make it plural) (I did solve more than one cryptogram puzzle). That’s OK, I thought. We planned to go to the laundromat after work. I can always write at the laundromat.

At the laundromat, after putting our clothes in the washer and bringing the detergent and bleach back out to the SUV, I sat down with my notebook. I opened it to the next blank page. I wrote the date. And I sat there. Oh yeah, I can’t always write at the laundromat.

Steven discovered some People magazine. No, no, I had to write. I looked at the notebook. I read the magazine. Actually, I mostly paged through it and looked at some of the pictures. I don’t know most of the current celebrities. I am so not mainstream.

I tried again after we got the clothes into the drier. Still no luck. This time I read The New Yorker. I felt pretty classy till I realized I wasn’t finishing any of the articles I started. I gave up and paged through looking at the cartoons. And I thought I was an intellectual.

Eventually we finished the burdensome chore and came home. I had sensibly put some stuff in the crock pot, so dinner was forthcoming. I can usually write better after a good meal.

As you can see, not so much. So here is today’s post, about not being able to write a post. I don’t promise a better post for tomorrow, but we can hope. I’m going to watch television and knit till bedtime.

NOT Chicken Cordon Bleu

On Sunday when I asked Steven what he would like for dinner, he said something involving cheese, because we had a brick of colby-jack in the refrigerator. I knew we also had deli ham, so I suggested Chicken Cordon Bleu.

“You’ll need to get some chicken,” he pointed out.

“I’m going to the store,” I said.

“And some cordon bleu.”

We had a good laugh speculating on which grocery aisle that would be in or if I would have to stop at the Cordon Bleu Store. We do get silly.

Full disclosure: what I make is not really Chicken Cordon Bleu. I’ve never followed a recipe, for one thing. I use chicken, cheese and ham. Beyond that, I make no promises. I was happy to find boneless skinless thighs at the grocery store. I have a problem with the breasts drying out. I suppose real chefs know how to combat that dilemma, and here we come to the ugly truth about me.

I was going to make spinach and artichoke dip for an appetizer, so I put some frozen spinach in a colander and poured hot water over it to thaw it. Then I crushed up some garlic and set the timer for 15 minutes so it would reach its full health benefits (at our age, we need all the help we can get). I crushed enough for the dip and the chicken. I also grated enough cheese for both. I thought that was pretty efficient of me.

Digging out a bread pan to put the dip in, I remembered I had left my favorite bread pan at Mom and Dad’s house (where I had brought my spinach and artichoke dip for a gathering). It was originally her bread pan, so I guess I can’t feel too bad about it. Anyways, I have other bread pans. I ought to bake more bread, but that’s a whole other blog post.

I chopped up a jar of artichoke hearts then a yellow onion. I hadn’t put onion in the dip before, but it sounded good. I planned to put some in the chicken, too. Steven read somewhere that once you peel and chop an onion, you should use the whole thing right away, because onions become toxic if you save them. If that is truly the case, I probably ought to be dead by now. Just the same, I’ve been buying smaller onions lately.

Artichokes, spinach, garlic, onion and cheese in the pan, I added a couple spoonfuls of mayonnaise, stirred it good, and put in in an oven, which I had preheated to 350 degrees (I perhaps should have mentioned that at the beginning of the description, but I rather doubt any of my readers are cooking along with me as they read). We ate the dip with tortilla rounds. It was pretty good.

For the chicken I put the rest of the garlic and the rest of the onions in with the rest of the cheese and mixed it up. I took the chicken thighs and kind of spread them out. I can never make the pound them down thing work. I put the cheese mixture on along with some fresh mushroom slices I had. I folded the chicken over and rolled it in seasoned breadcrumbs as best as I could.

It was awkward. I dug around in the drawer for some toothpicks and made the resulting bundle as neat as I could. I put them in a pan and put the pan in the 350 degree oven. I baked them for about an hour, testing with a meat thermometer, because I didn’t want to cut them open and look for pink.

They tasted pretty good. I was halfway through mine before I realized I had left out the ham.

Do You Like Me?

I purposely kept my wrist off my forehead yesterday so I could indulge in Wrist to Forehead Sunday today. Of course it might not have been necessary. I had planned a couple of Mohawk Valley adventures I could have written about. Unfortunately, they fell through. Blame the weather, blame my sinus headache (which was perhaps caused by the weather), or blame me. Whatever. The fact is, my husband is due home from work in about ten minutes and I want to have my blog post done and published so I can enjoy some time with him.

I’ll just mention as an aside here, we are celebrating our Anniversary Eve today. It’ll be 24 years tomorrow. In your face, divorce rate! As I think about this wonderful man with whom I share my life, my house, my dog, and my wine, I feel increasingly less wrist-to-foreheady. However, I felt marginally distressed earlier, so I’ll just rattle off a paragraph or two about that.

I was reading some other blogs. I don’t always have the time to do this, but I have a few I Follow, and I try to check out bloggers who have Liked my posts. I always feel so flattered to get Likes. Almost like I’m doing something right, which regular readers know is something that rarely happens. WELL, there I was reading a post when I discovered that SOME bloggers Like posts without actually reading them. Can you imagine such a thing?

This does explain a couple of times when I have gotten a Like almost immediately after hitting Publish. While it affords a certain satisfaction to have something explained, I can’t help feeling a certain dissatisfaction with the explanation. Luckily I don’t feel too awful about it. With my low self-esteem, I could easily flash back to the elementary school playground when, as too often happens in the schoolyard, someone I thought was a friend would suddenly do something mean to me.

“But I thought you LIIIIKED me!” I don’t remember if I actually wailed that line, with or without the extra syllables in “like,” but there’s a good chance I did. And you thought I was such a tough broad (nobody needs to tell me that they never thought that for one day ever in their lives).

I think miffed is a better term for the way I feel about it, now that I have reached middle age. I won’t say I’ve gained maturity exactly, but I admit to a certain level of contentment with my immaturity. We’ll call it perspective.

What was my point? Ah yes, merely to hit Publish before my husband got home. I didn’t make it. But I’ll hit Publish now, and we’ll talk more about this later.

Early Morning Stroll

The return of Saturday Running Commentary seems ever more remote. Alas. Looking back, I see it has been just over a week since my last Pedestrian Post, so I will attempt to write a little about the jaunt I took this morning with my schnoodle Tabby.

Steven had to work at 6:30, so we were up at an unconscionably early hour (I like that work “unconscionably.” I even spelled it correctly on the first try). Still, early mornings are nice. I wrote a few postcards, one of my favorite Saturday morning activities. As Mohawk Valley Girl, I feel I ought to point out that they were not postcards of the Mohawk Valley. They were some my mother picked up for me on a recent road trip she and my father took. I can only find so many postcards around here.

Tabby and I set out shortly after Steven left. I was wearing a cape my sister gave me. I felt distinctive wearing a cape. It was cool enough to make the cape appropriate but not so cold I wished I was wearing a hat. That was good, because my hair was still a little wet from my shower. I did not want hat head for the rest of the day.

It was still dark out. I love to be out before sunup for a fun purpose. Between the Army and the National Guard, I have many times left the house at oh-dark-thirty to spend way too long a day doing dreadfully uncomfortable things (yes, it is OH-dark-thirty; I never once heard it called zero-dark-thirty, although I suppose that is technically the correct term). Of course I don’t regret my time in the service, but it did rather warp my view of early morning hours.

We heard a dog bark. I thought I could see the little dog that lives up the street from us. His owners don’t put him on a leash. Was he going down the sidewalk? I couldn’t see in the dark. Then I could see him go back up the driveway and I saw the back porch light go off, so that was OK.

I could see a few lights inside houses on. More than I usually see when I’m out running prior to 4 a.m. I thought about the middle of summer when the sun is in the sky by 6:30. I love seasons. They add such interest to my days. Fall is my favorite. You never know what you’re going to get. We had some 70 degree weather this week, but we may get snow flurries on Sunday. You can laugh or you can cry; I prefer to laugh.

As we went across Meyers Park, I heard the jingle of a dog collar. Was that Nicky? It was! Nicky is a cute little dog I often pet when I am out running. We went up to them and said hello. I petted Nicky and Nicky sniffed Tabby’s butt. We walked a block together while Nicky’s lady and I chatted. We parted company when Tabby and I had to cross the street to get to the post office.

After the post office, we did not walk as long as we usually do, because I felt a few raindrops. We made it home before it was full-out raining, but after we were home I could hear it pour down. It kept raining for some hours. I’m glad we walked while the walking was good.

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