Thursday, December 12, 2013

Thursday Thoughts

1. Last weekend we baked some holiday cookies. I wasn't really in the mood, especially for these two kinds of cookies, but my parents requested them, so we made them. As usual, I got annoyed forming 4.5 dozen crescents and then dipping them in melted chocolate. Also as usual, we both got annoyed at shaping the candy cane cookies and then decided the finished product was not as good as we had hoped. They were too crisp. Ugh! Why does my dad like these stupid candy cane cookies so much???!!!!
2. SP went holiday shopping last weekend. There are presents for me under the tree! He also brought home a bag of Pittsburgh Popcorn Company's Chocolate Waffle Cone Popcorn. Yum! I love this stuff, especially the waffle cone bits.

3. I know it's only 2 weeks until Christmas but I just can't handle making plans for the holiday. I don't know what my problem is, but this year I'd just like to skip it and move right into January. Maybe because Thanksgiving was so late and now I feel pressed for time to get everything done that we need/want to get done which means holiday preparations are not feeling enjoyable and jolly but annoying and aggravating. Maybe because so much effort went into Thanksgiving that I'm just not recovered and ready to celebrate another holiday yet. Maybe because it's been so darn cold that I just want to stay huddled under the electric blanket and not crawl out until late March.

4. Speaking of cold & crappy weather, it's the reason we had to skip SP's work party last Friday evening. We didn't want to drive into the city and then have to deal with crappy roads on the drive home and then a snow covered driveway/walkway with the wheelchair.

5. Last Saturday we decided to have dinner at Bocktown. We have eaten there a lot because it's so close to us, but this time it's noteworthy because I actually ordered something different: delicious, creamy ham & potato soup (soup of the day) and the pot roast sandwich. Yum! SP ordered his usual crab soup and tried a ravioli and sausage dish that he enjoyed.

6. I am maybe getting a grip on my reading pile. But probably not. I've given up on the remaining 4 National Geographic Magazines for now. I definitely made time to read all the December food magazines because, well, holiday cookies! I had a pile of 4 library books. I read 2 , renewed 1, and had to return 1 unread. Then 2 more requests were ready, so now I'm back up to 3 library books.

The 2 I read:

*The Star of Istanbul by Robert Olen Butler - This is the first novel from Butler that I have read. I enjoyed the blend of history & espionage but I should have read the first novel with the character Christopher Marlowe Cobb before this one. It's not essential to understanding or enjoying the book, it's just that I like to read series with the same characters in order.

*The Quest by Nelson DeMille - I have read all of DeMille's novels and I am a big fan. This one disappointed me, but I'm not sure it was the novel itself, which is apparently a rewritten and doubled in length version of an earlier and shorter version by Demille from the mid 1970's (which I had not before seen in any list of DeMille works), or just that I have a problem with books/movies involving the quest for the Holy Grail. It's an intriguing premise and plot, searching for the Holy Grail, but it seems like it has been done so many times that I roll my eyes and sigh heavily. I didn't bother reading the plot synopsis before requesting this book, but then again, it's DeMille and I'm sure it wouldn't have deterred me.
7. We have been a little lazy in the kitchen. Last Friday we ordered pizza. For a couple dinners this week, we pulled out some frozen marinara sauce that we made just before Thanksgiving and ate it with angel hair pasta. There is still some ricotta from the lasagna we made so we dolloped some on top and grated some parmesan on top. Pasta with red sauce and cheese is so comforting and warming on these cold evenings.

8. It's Portman's ham salad week! SP stopped in and it happened to be a weekend that they were making & selling ham salad, so he got some. Love this stuff!

9. We have a couple of holiday parties coming up and I am trying to decide what we should make. I want to make a Buche de Noel but sometimes I think we should make something other than dessert because there is always a lot of dessert. I just can't figure out what non-dessert dish to make and take.

10. I can't tell you how excited SP is to be going to see the new Hobbit movie tomorrow afternoon. He's like a kid the night before Christmas. We have to watch all the Hobbit movie trailers on TV - if I start to fast forward through one, he gets all sad and tries to grab the remote out of my hands. After Hobbit he's going to the Pens game. I'll be enjoying an evening alone, maybe touching & shaking some of my presents under the tree, but mostly being happy that I have been saved from having to go see the Hobbit movie and that I no longer have to let all the Hobbit trailers play.

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