The Neverending Sickness…

I’m still sick.  I can’t
seem to kick this cold no matter how hard I try.  I feel like I’ve been doing everything right—taking
my vitamins, getting my vitamin C, eating my chicken soup, drinking tea with honey
and lemon and ginger, etc. Still, I feel like hell.  I could easily put my head down on my desk
right now, close my eyes and fall asleep just like that.

I did force myself to leave my office at lunch today.  No one wants to have lunch with a leper, but
I was feeling lonely and didn’t feel like spending another lunch hour cooped up
in my office with my knitting.  I’m
trying to be conscious of avoiding the general public as much as possible, so I
found a shady parking spot near a park, opened the windows and enjoyed some
fresh air while I ate my lunch and continued listening to the Hunger Games for
the umpteenth time.  It was actually
pretty nice. 

I am trying to be my own personal cheerleader.  You are so much better! You are totally
feeling better today!  Just imagine how
much better you’ll feel tomorrow!

The thing is that we’ve been planning on going camping this
weekend for a while and I am soooo looking forward to it.  I need to be healthy.  I must get better.  I’m not letting this darn cold force me to
miss yet another thing that I’m looking forward to.  (Last weekend, it was Disneyland.) 

Bring on the tea.

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The Sickness

This weekend, I watched four gazillion hours of television.

And that's probably just the tip of the iceberg.  If I wasn't sleeping in the same pajamas I put on Friday when I got home from work, then I was staring blankly at the TV.

Unfortunately, today is Monday and I did not call in sick, and so here is my view from the office…

Photo

When I get home, it's straight back into the jammies.  The sickness has got to end sometime.  Please let it be tomorrow.

Not Sick

I've been exceptionally tired all week, but I didn't give it much thought.  Then, as I was trying to fall asleep last night, I noticed that my nose was stuffed up.  Not normal for me.  Still I disregarded it.

Until this morning, when I woke up stuffy with a sore throat and a body that feels like it's been run over by a food truck.  I have used approximately a dozen tissues since arriving at work this morning, and all I want to do is crawl back under the covers for a long winter's nap.  

Plus, it's gloomy and rainy outside and it would be the perfect day to be home sick.

EXCEPT that we're going to Disneyland again on Sunday and I've been looking forward to it all week and I absolutely positively refuse to be sick.  I just won't do it.  

So instead, I'm going to sit here with coffee (not tea becasuse I'm NOT sick) and get this darn work day over with so that I can go home to my wife tonight and make home made mongolian beef and then make popcorn and watch the Little Mermaid.  Because I'm NOT sick.

Wholes

Purple

This morning, I would love nothing more than to crawl back
under the covers with the puppies who kept me up half the night with their
on-the-bed, off-the-bed antics and sleep until noon.  Or ten. 
Or at all. 

It feels like there’s not enough coffee on the planet to get
me through this work day.  Fortunately,
it’s a short week.  What feels like
Tuesday is actually Wednesday—24 hours closer to the weekend. 

I’ve been feeling impatient with life, lately.  In general, it feels like everything I want
at this stage in my life is just beyond arm’s reach.  I know that everything happens for a
reason.  All of the financial setbacks we’ve
had lately were important in the big picture. 
I’m ok with that.  I’m just
antsy.  Antsy to know what the next thing
is.  Antsy to see where it’s all leading
us.  Wishing for a fast forward button
while at the same time wanting to pause and enjoy.

So we carry on.  We
move forward, slowly.  We continue along
the path laid out for us, and I continue to be grateful for everything we have—each
other, a happy home, regular paychecks—more good things than I could ever begin
to list.  Instead of trying to cram our
round life into a square hole right this second, I need to spend some time
carving out a better hole.    

Sunshine and Rainbows and Thirty

Mickey_ferris_wheel_web

We spent our Sunday at Disneyland.  I don't think there's a better way to spend a Sunday–especially when Monday is a holiday.

There's just something about Disneyland that turns me into an overgrown Tigger. I smile more than usual.  (OK, WAY more than usual.)  I think it's because the people around me are most often smiling as well.  It's hard to be upset when you're surrounded by happy people. 

This time, we were celebrating a friend's 30th birthday.  That alone is crazy to me.  I don't feel like I'm over 30.  I still feel like I'm 25–only with a better pay check and a nicer office.  It's hard to accept–and even harder with each passing milestone birthday of our friends who are younger than us.  I will be 32 this summer.  I can remember a time in my life when 32 felt old.    In some ways, 32 still feels old.

I guess that's just one of the many reasons why I love Disneyland so much.  It's easy to feel young when you're desperately trying to beat your wife's score on the Astroblasters.

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The Happiest Place…

At the Dog Park

It's been in the eighties the past few days.  All of a sudden, we've gone from coats and scarves to shorts and sunscreen.  Southern California can be so strange sometimes.  

There are some benefits to our warm weather, though, and we decided on Monday that the dogs were deserving of a trip to the dog park.  They LOVE the dog park.  

Twix runs and runs like a crazy dog…

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Twix_action_web_1

(Where's the kitty, Twixie?)

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And Rolo saunters around smelling every last smell…

Rolo_walking_web

Rolo_park_web
(Love his little basset butt)

By the end of our park time, we have two exhausted, but happy pups who nap and occupy themselves willingly for the rest of the day.  It's a win-win, if you ask me.

Twix_web

Kitty “Hunting”

We play a game with Twix on our walks called, "Where's the kitty?"  Sometimes, we ask her when there really is a kitty somewhere in sight, but often, we ask her just to get her to stop and look around. It's cute how she goes into hunter mode–ears perk up and she becomes very still and she scouts the bushes looking for kitties.

The other day, we happened across a few.  One of them was positively posing for the dogs as they "hunted."  It's like he knew they were leashed and couldn't hurt him, so he strutted about, stretching and swaggering.  

Kitty_1_web

Kitty_hunting_2

Kitty_hunting

I wish I had a good picture of Twix pointing.  Her tail goes fairly straight and she lifts one paw and stares, unmoving.  I think it's adorable.

We came across a few more kitties on our walk the other day, but these two were busy hunting each other.  First, I saw the black one coming through the bushes:

Kitty_4

And after walking to the other side of the bushes, I caught this little guy creeping along toward the other one:

Kitty_3

Naturally, Twix was completely oblivious to these two.  Silly dog.

Red, Orange, Yellow…

Yesterday, Los Angeles broke a a 30+ year old record for lowest recorded temperature on that day.  We put on scarves and sweatshirts and took the dogs for a walk just before 5 o'clock.  I'm glad we don't live in a place where winter is brown and white.

Red berries

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Oranges

Oranges_web

The last few bright leaves on a small maple tree


Orange_leaves_web

Yellow leaves

Yellow_leaves

Greek Yogurt Pancakes with Raspberry Lemon Sauce

It's been a whirlwind couple of weeks for us.  Between the holidays, the break-in, and Rolo's illness, we're feeling a little beaten down.  We've entertained two weekends in a row, now, and while I love love love it, I think we could use a quiet weekend at home.

Unfortunately, there are no quiet weekends at home in sight for a while, so I woke up on Sunday morning determined to make sure we had (at the very least) a nice, quiet Sunday at home.  Even though the last thing I wanted to do when I woke up was make breakfast, I really wanted to try this new recipe and I dragged myself into the kitchen to find that the coffee was ready and the dishes from our dinner party the night before were washed. I love my wife.

A few weeks ago, a friend of mine had posted on Facebook about making yogurt pancakes for breakfast.  I picked up a container of non-fat plain greek yogurt at the store after that and figured I'd give it a shot.  I googled until I found this recipe by Picklee.  Many of the recipes out there called for flavored yogurt, but that wasn't what I wanted.  This recipe is nice and simple and gives you a plain pancake.  I did tweak it a bit by adding 2 tsp of sugar and eliminating the cinnamon.  I used egg whites only as she instructs in the recipe, and let me just say–I LOVE THESE PANCAKES.  They are better than any of the mixes that come from a box.  They cooked beautifully, and I loved the slightly dense texture much better than the dry airiniess you get from the boxed mixes.   

Our lemon tree is in season, so we are swimming in meyer lemons.  We also had a container of raspberries in the fridge.  I decided to make a raspberry lemon sauce to go with the pancakes.  I'm adding the recipe for the raspberry sauce below–it turned out great for something I threw together first thing in the morning while I was half asleep.  I'm definitely adding it to my arsenal.

In the end, we had:

Raspberry_pancakes_web

Raspberry Lemon Sauce

(Serves 2)

Ingredients:

  • Raspberries – one 6 oz container
  • Grated zest of one meyer lemon (although a regular lemon will bejust fine)
  • 1 tbsp meyer lemon juice (you may want to decrease this a bit if substituting a regular lemon)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tsp cornstarch

Add the raspberries, lemon zest, lemon juice, sugar to a small saucepan and add just enough of the water to moisten the mixture.  Bring to a boil, stirring frequently, then reduce to simmering.  Keep stirring, mashing up the raspberries a bit with a spoon as you stir.  When the raspberries are mush, remove from heat and pour into a fine mesh strainer to remove the seeds and lemon zest.  You'll be left with a beautiful raspberry liquid.  Put it back in the saucepan and whisk in the 2 teaspoons of cornstarch one at a time over low heat.  Simmer until thickened.

A Stroll…

Leaving Rolo at the vet hospital was totally draining. Walking out of a vet's office with my dog's collar and leash in hand was reminscent of putting my childhood dog down when I was nineteen.  Not a fun thought when my sweet baby boy is seriously ill.

When I got home, I was sleepy and depressed, and rather than do any of the productive things I had planned to do, I curled up on the couch with Twix, an oversized fuzzy blanket, and NCIS re-runs on cable.  Catch took one look at me when she got home from work and insisted that I get dressed because we clearly needed to go out for a walk.

With only one dog to walk, I was able to bring my camera.  I really do love our neighborhood.

Sunshine hiding behind beautiful puffy rain clouds 

Walk1

Twix wants to know what the hold-up is. I'm clicking away.

Walk3

This is one of my favorite plants on our walks.  Orange buds with purple flowers–and it's winter.

Walk4

I love the branches on this tree.  

Walk5\

More sunshine hiding behind clouds twoard the end of our walk. I hate the house, but love the lines of those tall, whispy tree branches silhouetted in front of the cloud.  

Walk2

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A Houndful of Issues…