Winter holidays have come and gone and things at work are slowly simmering down a bit, now that people are starting to get over their “clean the house” and “donate to those less fortunate” and “make some tiny girl throw away our unsaleable trash” resolutions. Let’s talk about that last one for a minute. You cannot donate everything to non-profits; some things you really do have to take responsibility for. Here’s a good tip: if you wouldn’t want to buy [item X] in the condition you’re donating it in, no one else is going to. Please don’t use your trash as a tax write-off. Please stop pretending that you care about the planet and the people on it when really, you just don’t want this junk taking up the space for your new flat screen. Here’s another tip: in the future, when you’re buying something (anything new, especially), think about its future. How long are you going to keep it (realistically)? Are you going to take care of it? Is this something that someone else will be able to use after you’ve used it? If not, how will you dispose of it?
When you are getting ready to clean house, do a little research on what programs are available to help you out. You’re going to have to do a little extra work. Sorry about that. I don’t want to throw out any more exercise equipment.
Ok. So moving on.
It’s a bit belated, but how was your holiday? I hope you were able to spend it with the folks you care about. I spent a relaxing (and allergy free, this time ’round!) few days at the old homestead in Vermont, where I cuddled cats, received some lovely lovely wee gifts, and ate far too many desserts. In my defense, there was a bottomless bowl of Hershey’s kisses left on the table; I can’t be to blame.
I also have a tendency, when I’m in the big yellow house, to eat far more toast than I would on my own. Toast, usually burnt, was one of my go-to safe foods (which is absurd in a lot of ways, now that I think about it) in high school. Old habits die hard, I suppose.
I made my father laugh (a lot, it really made my day) with this gem, which I wrote out and tucked into a card.
A newspaper reporter submitted a story about the theft of 2,025 pigs.
His editor, struck at the size of the theft, called the farmer to confirm.
“Is it true that you lost two thousand twenty-five pigs?” he asked.
“Yeth,” said the farmer.
The editor thanked him, hung up, and changed the phrase to “two sows and 25 pigs.”
He and I watched a lot of House. It was nice to have some quiet time, though watching television made me happier still about not having a one of my own. Advertisements make me want to shoot myself in the face. So it’s a choice I continue to feel really good about.
We spent Christmas day with my mum’s family. Again, lovely little presents and too many desserts. One of my aunts is a wizard baker. I hope to follow in her footsteps; my orange shortbread and key lime cookies went over well (especially with her!). I was pretty darn pleased with myself and I think those two recipes may become my own little holiday tradition. And I love that citrus is seasonal, as I still haven’t really managed to grasp the whole idea of utilizing food in season. I want strawberries in March, apples in June (I eat apples all the time, whatever), corn on the cob in December. Citrus is the one thing I understand and appreciate the seasonality of. We need citrus this time of year. Thinking about fresh oranges and grapefruits is one of the things that make the cold, dark time of year bearable for me. That being said, I have some recipes lined up to try, ones that do not consist mostly of pure butter. In fact, most of them are vegan and use no butter. Science at work! Delicious, delicious science!
Also, on a semi-related note, what in hell is up with the weather lately? New Hampshire is downright balmy. I love it, but it makes me incredibly nervous.