Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Friday, November 16, 2012

Damn Baby, That's Cold! (And Some Hot and Sour Soup)

For some reason I have been cold.  Really, really cold.  And I can't seem to warm up.  The odd thing is that this has been going on for I don't know, two or three weeks maybe?  And I don't like it -- in the least.  I am not a fan of the cold or of being cold.  And so, in a stroke of brilliance this week, I made hot and sour soup.  (I have actually made it three times in the past month or so, because it is spectacular and also quite awesome.)

It would appear that hot and sour soup is the only thing that can warm me up at the moment.  Well, this and that hideous Barefoot Dreams jacket I bought a million years ago.  (I've tried to put it in the goodwill pile a few times, and then I always cave and go fetch it.  Whatever.)

Anyway, Chinese cooking is not exactly one of my strengths, yet I have been dabbling in it quite a bit these days. Or as much as my children will let me anyway.  This soup is quite hot -- not temperature wise, more cayenne and white pepper wise.  (This is actually the point of the soup.  Apparently in America we like to serve chicken soup to those who are sick, whereas in China they like to serve hot and sour soup.  The thinking is that it will burn out and purge whatever is ailing you.  I like that way of looking at sickness: not making someone comfy and cozy, but purging that shit out of them -- fast!  Oddly, most people I know don't agree.)  I have been cutting the pepper down a bit so Emilia will eat it (Leo, fat chance), but she has started complaining no matter what.  And when I made this soup a few nights ago, I was incredibly distracted at the time and added exactly how much the recipe called for.  Oi.  I didn't even bother giving her any, which suited her just fine.  Instead she got to sit and eat her Chinese buns (another one of my endeavors) to her heart's content with her brother.  Whereas the grownups got hot steaming bowls-full to soothe the soul, er, I mean purge the body, and to finally warm me up a bit. Bliss.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

If God Had Gifted Me

Do you think I am an automaton? — a machine without feelings? and can bear to have my morsel of bread snatched from my lips, and my drop of living water dashed from my cup? Do you think, because I am poor, obscure, plain, and little, I am soulless and heartless? You think wrong! — I have as much soul as you — and full as much heart! And if God had gifted me with some beauty and much wealth, I should have made it as hard for you to leave me, as it is now for me to leave you. I am not talking to you now through the medium of custom, conventionalities, nor even of mortal flesh: it is my spirit that addresses your spirit; just as if both had passed through the grave, and we stood at God's feet, equal — as we are!

― Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre

Monday, November 12, 2012

Of Butter and French Lime Creme Tarts

This was my thought on Sunday morning: 'I know, I will make scones.'  And then I asked those who had managed to congregate in our bed, 'How's that sound?  Hmmm?  Scones sound alright for breakfast?'  I was met with a resounding 'YES!', or maybe just a, 'Yeah, I guess that'd be alright.'  So, with that in mind,  I padded off to the kitchen to get started.  But there you go -- sinking heart.  No butter.  (NO BUTTER?!  No fecking butter, did you say??!!)  Yes, that's right.  No Fecking Butter!  None at all, aside from one lonely stick.  One paltry, lonely, pathetic stick of butter.  Pffft.  And then I thought this: 'What kind of person have I become?  Am I not a woman?!  It's like I don't even know who I am anymore.  Bloody hell. And also sniff, sniff.'

Or something like that anyway.  And so.

The situation was remedied immediately.  After church we stopped and bought four pounds.

Ahem, now then, where was I?  Scones?  No, no, we've moved on since then.  Now it is all about French Tarts.  (No, not that sort, thank you very much.)  Now it is all about the French Lime Creme Tarts.  Or (if it is a few days later), the French Lemon Creme Tart -- equally good and calling for equal amounts of butter (roughly one pound, to be precise).  Praises be to God!  Because really, couldn't we all use a bit more more butter in our lives?  (Yes, please.)

But there you are.  One week.  I have made both.  French Lime Creme Tart and French Lemon Creme Tart.  Which is better?  Dunno.  But I am inclined to go lime.  Or maybe lemon.  But most certainly lime.  And Emilia appears to agree, dreamy girl that she is.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Good Point

No sight so sad as that of a naughty child, he began, especially a naughty little girl. Do you know where the wicked go after death?

They go to hell, was my ready and orthodox answer.

And what is hell? Can you tell me that?

A pit full of fire.

And should you like to fall into that pit, and to be burning there for ever?

No, sir.

What must you do to avoid it?

I deliberated a moment: my answer, when it did come was objectionable: I must keep in good health and not die.

― Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Oh My My Oh Hey Hey!

Lovely girl won't you stay, won't you stay, stay with me
All my life I was blind, I was blind, now I see
Lovely girl won't you stay, won't you stay, stay with me
All my life I was blind, I was blind, now I see!

Oh my my oh hey hey
Here she comes by saving grace
Burn the car and save the plates
She's arrived, my saving grace!
(The Lumineers, Big Parade)