Don’t Listen To Them

“It will be fun,” they promised. “You will laugh,” they said. “What have you got to lose,” they asked. So, I went on the giant slide. I reminded myself that this is what people do. They slide down these huge piles of sugar-like substance on a leaf. I mean what could go wrong?

Let me tell you what could go wrong. The sugar-like substance appears to be fine and soft to the touch. That is until you are sliding down the slope of it. At this point, it becomes a form of sandpaper.

Sandpaper and leaves do not go well together. Trust me. You see the friction of the sandpaper wears holes in the leaves. The leaves that you happen to be sitting on. This means that soon you are basically sliding down sandpaper, hoping your clothing holds up, as well as your skin.

I guess you could say it’s a way to exfoliate if you don’t mind a bit of pain. You see, it was fun when we started down the slope, the first two seconds or so. Then it was about protecting my skin and my clothes as the leaf started to give way to friction. There was no laughing on my part. Not even a giggle. They, on the other hand, were laughing. I will never listen to them again.

The Food Makes The Moment?

Some people say the sandwich makes a picnic. The type of bread, the fillings, even how it is prepared can all play a big part in the final taste of the sandwich.

Beloved is one of those people who truly believe that the sandwich can make or break a picnic. Sure, you have to consider the weather as well as the location. However, great food can overcome a poor location or rubbish weather.

With this theory in mind, Beloved headed off to the market to gather the picnic items required for a perfect outing. I stayed out of the making of the picnic food because I am not a picnic kind of girl. There is something wrong about eating with the ants.

He spent a few hours in the kitchen after he came back from the market, claiming the sandwich had to be pulled together and allowed to have the flavors all marry together before it was consumed. He did not explain why this included a plastic-wrapped brick being squished on top of it.

So, tell me picnic fans, how does this work. What is the magic that happens with the food that makes it great to share with the ants and the wind?

Giving Up?

Some people give up chocolate for Lent. Other’s give up pasta or bread. I’ve heard of people giving up television shows or other forms of entertainment. The list is endless on what you can give up for Lent.

After all, you aren’t giving it up permanently, and even if you fail in the time frame, you can still reward yourself with whatever it is you have as a reward. For most folks, that’s getting rewarded with a chocolate egg or bunny.

This year, Beloved has decided he wants to something a little different, he wants to give up Lent, or rather the idea of denying himself something for Lent. (I should point out the man isn’t catholic, but he still tries to abstain from something during Lent. I suspect this has more to do with his habit of having excess leading up to Lent.)

Now that he’s giving up Lent for Lent, the house is full of all manner of food, and it appears to be in excess as well. This means that there are chocolate eggs and bunnies in the house. Pies, cakes, and buns are on the list for purchase.

Frankly, I think he’s giving up shame for Lent, which isn’t a bad thing either.

Who Needs A Clock, Get A Dog 

Who needs alarm clocks, or clocks in general, when you have the four-footed one in your life?  She is not just a creature of routine, she’s a creature of time.  She gets up the same time every morning.  She insists on bedtime being the same each night, unless one of us isn’t home by that time.  She gets unpleasant if her routine mealtime is messed up.  She wants her walks right after breakfast, lunch and evening snack time at the same time.  She is a creature of time.

I’ve been unwell, I’ve been up all night with my pain and such.  Four-feet has slept the sleep of the unbothered.  I’ve managed to fall asleep before the sun is just coming up, only to be awoken at our usual time because of the four-footed one.  This is not a one off thing either. 

We’ve come back from errands a half hour late to discover the four-footed one is in a mood because her lunch time has just been pushed back by that half hour. And not just lunch either, there is the walk after that which has now been messed up.  We’ve also left and missed her evening snack time and come home to one angry bundle of fur.   Don’t worry, after snack and being allowed to air her grievances, she’s calmed down again.

Last night she came twice to nose me off to bed.  I wasn’t really ready for bed, but she was.  And she wanted to get comfortable on the bed, which is only possible when her human mattress/pillows are already in bed.  So I left a lg hit on, to read by.  After twnety minutes she decided it was too much and kept batting at me to turn off the lights  and put the book away.  

This morning I lingered too long with my coffee.  She wanted her walk and even though I wasn’t taking her, she wasn’t pleased with me sitting at the table.  I was supposed to be at the door to say goodbye and watch her start her walk. Too bad she can’t talk. Not that I’m planning anything, but if anything were ever to happen where I needed to have a witness as to my whereabouts at a specific time, she’d be the ideal witness.  She’s a clock on four legs! 


The four-footed one has a thing for bananas.  She doesn’t just like them, she loves them.  She is obessed with them.  We may have made a mistake in letting her sample a small piece once.  Since that point in time, she has become a bit crazy about bananas.

Beloved brought a couple into the house while I was out with her.  When we came home, she ran immediately to the kitchen, sniffing out the location of the bananas.  She couldn’t see them, but she could smell them even though they still had a shade of green on them.    She couldn’t be dissuaded from the kitchen either.  She was willing to sit with them.  Almost a vigil of sorts as they ripened.  Perhaps she couldn’t trust us. 

Naturally, when they were ripe, she decided to announce it to the world.  Or at least it seemed that way to us.  There was barking and almost yodelling.  She danced and jumped and wagged her tail as if it would fall off.  She sniffed the peel in anticipation.

She licked her lips as a small piece was offered to her.  She did her best impression of a vacuum, consuming it with a speed that was almost shocking.  And then she repeated her performance in hopes of being rewarded again.  Which she was because Beloved is a softie when it comes to her.  She begs and he responds by giving her what she wants.  And what she wants is bananas.

Interesting Life 

A funny thing happens when you have an illness like lupus.  It keeps life, well, interesting.  It is interesting for the person who has the illness,  it it is equally interesting for anyone else in your life.  Beloved always wanted to be a doctor, of a type.  He got a PhD and had a lovely life doing what he wanted, traveling as he wished.  

Then he met me.  Suddenly his life became, well, complicated.  Travelling when he wanted was out of the question because sometimes lupus doesn’t let you just travel.  So, if he wanted me to join him, it would become a bit more of a scheduling and wait and see deal. 

He also ended up learning a lot of stuff from a medical standpoint. He jokes that he has become an unofficial doctor with all he’s learned medically.  Heck, he has come to accessorize the house around an IV pole and such.  He’s learned that some of my medication must be kept cool.  He’s gotten ideal at reorganizing the refrigerator, dealing with needles and such.

He’s adapted to the me who can do things one moment and the next be left unable to do half of what I could before.  He’s adjusted to the whole ‘the sun is trying to kill me’ approach I have to sunlight.  He’s had to adjust to the girl he knew suddenly not looking like the girl he knew.  He’s adapted to my ups and downs with doing things, for pain, and all the rest. 

So if he wanted interesting, he got that in spades with me! 

A Girl Who Knows 

Four-feet was in need of a little something to chew on, so a trip to a pet store was on order.  A store that would welcome the four-footed one in so she could pick out her favorite chew item.  A store that would have said items at her level so she could take her own, or in her wildest dreams, more than one!

After finding a store that met those requirements we were off.  Four-feet was a girl on a mission.  It may have had to do with the discussion Beloved and I had about getting her T-R-E-A-T-S. She knows this word.  Not just when we say it, but apparently when we spell it, based on her determination and urgency.  Who knows what else she knows and can spell! 

She was everywhere in that store, with the employees gushing over her and Beloved getting his arms filled.  We came for the one item and left with one item several times over.  And one very satisfied dog.  

Of course the trouble with shopping with four-feet is that she knows what we bought.  So even though she got her chew item once we got home, she waited for the other stuff to be provided as well.  When these items weren’t on offer, she opted to pout and ignore us.  She ignored the chew item, instead just sitting and staring at her bed. 

She remained that way until it was time to eat.  Well, actually, she remained that way until the kibble hit her bowl because she does have her priorities after all. And after her kibble was consumed, she decided to come back to visiting is.  Probably because she knew there were carrots on the table and she loves to get a few pieces of carrot when we have them.  When the carrots were finished and no more items were on offer for her, four-feet went back to her chew item.  

Sure, she is a girl who knows her mind.  She is also a girl who knows her priorities and goals, and how to balance it all out.  I’m not going to li, I am jealous of her skills with this!

Translation Please

Only in my household, do you find naked onions, turnips without dresses, and pantless bananas. The first time I heard about naked onions, I stood rooted in disbelief. It was the first time Beloved and I tried cooking together.

Naked onions, for the record, are onions that have been peeled. (You probably figured that out faster than I did.) Turnips without dresses are turnips that have had the tops trimmed. (Don’t ask. I’m just sort of along for the ride on this one!) As for pantless bananas, it’s not what you think. Thes are banans that have been removed from the bunch.

Beloved speaks many languages, which I admire. However, the phrases he comes up with can leave me shaking my head and looking for a translator.

He uses senior citizen tomatoes for his sauces. He gently fries infant peas which have been removed from their nests.

You can probably guess the tomatoes are old and the skin has started to wrinkle. The infant peas are young peas that have been taken out of their pods.

Living with Beloved is always an adventure and meals are never dull.

A Path To My True Love

I love chocolate and peanut butter together. I don’t love milk chocolate, nor do I love sweet peanut butter. Beloved has been searching for a recipe that incorporates my love of peanut butter and chocolate without it being rather fattening. Oh, and he wants it simple too.

He spent a few days searching for just the thing and then gave up, deciding to do it his way. He used unsweetened applesauce in place of oil or butter. He used all-natural peanut butter, oat flour, a pinch of salt and a few dashes of sugar. He used the seeds of a vanilla pod and I don’t know what else. All I know is that it was delicious if not the most elegant thing to look at.

How delicious can a healthy version of a dessert be? Surprisingly good if you really must know. And no, there isn’t any left to share, but I’m sure he will make more again. I hope he continues to use good quality chocolate rather than the chips he had originally planned on using.

The Shape Of Healing

She arrived in a swirl of colorful skirts, a dark hat, and a multicolored cardigan one size too small. She didn’t so much walk into my room as she just kind of was there one minute!

She didn’t speak so much as she grunted and waved a handful of leaves at me. Not speaking the language, I wasn’t sure what she was saying or wanting me to do. She thrust dried leaves my way, pulled a cigar out of the depths of her voluminous skirts, and struck a match against her shoe.

This was unlike any doctor’s visit I had experienced in the past and I was sure it would be unlike anything I would experience again. How often does a doctor light up a cigar, and then blow the smoke on you, while insisting you fan yourself with the leaves? She continued the process until the cigar was a stub and the leaves had crumbled to nothing.

Just when I didn’t think it could become any more unusual, she scooped up some of the crumbled leaves, put them in a glass with water and swirled them around. Once she finished this, she dumped the water out and waited for the leaves to dry on the side of the glass.

The position of the leaves told her the next steps to healing me, which involved another cigar and smoke being blown around me. Healing takes all shapes and forms in the world. Not all of the way s can be understood.