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homeward vignettes

homeward vignettes

i passed a dead cat on the side of the road on my way home this evening. one of the hardest things i’ve ever had to do was knock on a door after i hit a dog. i was 17 and driving the family safari van with my sibs in the back. it was a 45mph road and dark out, and the dog literally came out of nowhere in front of my passenger-side headlight. we stopped and looked around in the dark for the dog, but we found nothing. i felt sick as i headed up to the nearest house and told the woman who answered the door that i probably hit her dog and i didn’t even know where he was.

i love seeing christmas lights on people’s houses out on backroads. they’re like beacons in the dark eveningtime. i wish people would keep them lighted through the end of february to get us all past the doldrums of winter.

there is a short dead-end road in avon proper where every house is decked out with christmas decor. the neighbors have worked with each other to string lights across the road, criss-crossing from tree to tree to create a twinkly colorful surround-light experience as you drive half a block and then have to do a 45-point turn around to drive back.

is an artificial tree to a real tree like a kindle is to a paper book?

when i was early 20s, i thought 40 was ancient. now that i’m 40, i think 80’s not so old.

every day i think about how i’m pretty lucky that i don’t have mental health issues like some people do. sure, i have anxiety that’s more situational based than anything else, but my seasonal depression pretty much disappeared after i started running on the treadmill through the winter (even tho i’m still sad about no light, it’s just a general “awww, the sun’s down” and not “sigh the sun’s down time to curl into a ball and cry”). there are several people in my life who have varying degrees of depression, and it’s hard to know how to help besides just being there and telling them what i see. i think maybe that’s all a person can do.

i got my christmas poinsettia today (my only xmas decor in the house). next week i’ll get a tree. time to watch some christmas movies.

hold up

hold up

everybody’s talking about how their christmas decor has been up for two weeks and i’m over here like “hmm…maybe i’ll get around to it in two weeks.” i’m still rockin my autumn decor!

actually, i’m waiting for my new COUCH. i ordered it on veterans day weekend, and they said it should be here either this week or next week.

i got this one in a burgundy/purply color with some bear/moose fabric pillows. the chaise longue part is on the other side, but details details at this point.

so, once the couch is in, i’ll at least start to pack up the autumn decor and maybe think about getting out my christmas stuff.

turn off your bluetooth

turn off your bluetooth

i’m watching a documentary about how our data is mined and how cambridge analytica persuaded undecided voters in the 2016 election and brexit. one of the comments was how the price of a person’s data is more valuable than oil.

it’s stuff like this why i don’t have alexa in each room, read paper books, and turn off as many location services as possible on my phone. another thing i want to start doing is remembering to turn off my bluetooth when i go into stores (they are able to use your BT to send you intrusive messages when you walk past these beacon things. they also know that you were in their store and will be able to send you ads). i was recently at a google ads training, and the person running it was telling us about how she turns off BT, which is telling – when the people who understand how the technology works and turn if off? you know something is not cool.

this makes me wish for the golden days of the internet again, before we were immersed in the internet so much.

i was going to write a short story today, but after i started watching this doc, i ended up not having time and also had to vent briefly about it.

foodie friday – tday edition

foodie friday – tday edition

as promised, here are some pics of the food from yesterday!

that butterscotch tart was probably the best thing i’ve eaten in a long time. it’s a pecan shortbread crust with a homemade butterscotch pudding in it. the pecans on top are candied. maybe if i were really fancy, i would add some sort of fruit compote to it – either underneath the pudding layer or just a thin layer on top. maybe a raspberry!

anyway, thanksgiving was a success! the gravy was smokey flavored from last year, the dressing was in excellent shape for being a year old, and the turkey was delicious with the dry brine. the fancy carrots and broccolini were a ncie touch!

10/10 stars. would make thanksgiving dinner again.

oooh yeah

oooh yeah

kudos to last year me when i made turkey stock out of the smoked turkey i got from famous dave’s. my gravy is delicious.

also, that  butterscotch tart is going to be a party for my taste buds. might be my new tday dessert. or my anyday dessert.

the dry brine for my turkey smelled awesome. turkey is currently absorbing the smells into its meaty, spatchocked goodness.

tomorrow will be foodelicious! food pics forthcoming!

pre-thanksgiving shenanigans

pre-thanksgiving shenanigans

nate took this entire week off, so i was feeling bummed that i didn’t get to partake in some nate time while he was hanging out at home, so i ended up taking today and wednesday off to join him – a WHOLE WEEK’S STAYCATION.

last night we finished up some thanksgiving meal shopping, then today we headed down to the cities for some MOA time. the main reason i wanted to go to the MOA? it’s time for my lindt advent calendar! this, along with my cheese advent calendar, should mean the best lead-up to christmas ever (because BEFORE christmas is ADVENT; AFTER christmas is the 12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS. get it right!).

(this isn’t the usual illustrated version of their advent calendar, but the chocolates in it are more to my liking and it was $20 cheaper. i’ll take it!)

mmm chocolate and cheese. while we were at the moa, we went to the new duluth trading company underwear-only store and i stopped at the silver jeans store to get in on a deal and get me some jeans that fit and are the right length.

then we headed over to black sheep pizza in uptown because i’d heard good things about it. nate wasn’t a huge fan, but i liked the crust and sauce. the salami was a little gamey and weird, but the olives on it were top notch.

we headed home before the SNOWPOCALYPSE. (and stopped at the st. joe meat market to pick up some lard, because it’s PIE TIME, BABY!!!)


pie time baby, indeed! i invited my family to join me for thanksgiving, and only jane is showing up, and good for her because here’s what’s on the menu! the rest of you losers are missing out.

  1. dry-brined turkey. i got a yummy sounding brine recipe from bon appetit, and every article i’ve read about brining has said a dry-brine is the way to go. my turkey is just a jennie-o this year, but i’ll still try to make it decent. gonna spatchcock the bird. i MIGHT try grilling it! (i intended to just buy a turkey breast but when i saw that the 3-lb breast was twice the price of a whole 15-lb bird, i decided to go all out.)
  2. mashed potatoes and gravy (nate’s request). i haven’t decided yet if i’m going to make some gravy from scratch or from a jar. we’ll see how ambitious i get.
  3. leftover dressing from LAST YEAR because i made so much and had 3 pints leftover that are still in my freezer!  (i’d make more if more people were coming, but this just turned out so handy.)
  4. roasted broccolini with pepitas and ricotta cheese, which should be a nice refreshing dish!
  5. roasted carrots with lemon zest ( i love cooked carrots)
  7. pumpkin pie made with lard and love!
  8. butterscotch tart with pecans to replace the pecan pie. i’m really excited for this one. i found it in a martha steward magazine.
  9. breakfast for me will be oatmeal/chia before the wishbone run. lunch snacks of cheese and crackers. no galette this year (it’s a lot of work).

i’m making 75% of the meal tomorrow and warming it up on thanksgiving. i think that’s the key. i’m also going to try to take more pics of food because foodie friday is coming up and this is the ultimate foodie friday.

ok, i’m out! time to lie on the couch and watch netflix. this staycation is already turning out to be great.

recap monday!

recap monday!

last night i drove down to the cities to see megan and to go to a third eye blind concert! first we headed to hell’s kitchen for supper (i had some tasty walleye tacos) and then drove over to the myth to see the band.

do do do – do do do dooo

3eb was a popular band in the 90s, and if you were under 30 in the 90s, i’m sure you heard semi-charmed kinda life aka the crystal meth song. (there’s a line in there: doing crystal meth’ll lift you up until you break). that song will forever remind me st. ben’s and driving along main street in st. joe during the end of spring semester. i don’t even know what year or who i was with, but i remember “I believe in the sand beneath my toes; The beach gives a feeling, An earthy feeling; I believe in the faith that grows”.

i digress! we had to stop and pick up some earplugs because we’re old and care about our hearing, then we headed to the venue and had a good listen. there were a lot of younger people there (younger meaning they were toddlers when 3eb was in their prime), which i was surprised at considering that i was in college when they had their hits. although i can’t complain too much about that since i would for sure go see a neil diamond concert.

overall i’d give it a good review! the music was fun and i had a fun time with megan! the only down side was that i didn’t get home until 12:30 and today at work i was not having fun!


a few things

a few things

  1. i got disneyplus and i just watched the first episode of the mandalorian, which wasn’t bad. it intrigued me enough to get ready for the next episode! it’s basically a western, from what i can tell. another GEM on D+: kitbull just wrecked me. so lovely. as far as something weird yet interesting on D+, you can check out jeff goldblum’s show, which touches on really different topics and their origins. jeff goldblum is just a weird dude, so the show is weird.
  2. tomorrow i’m going to a concert! i’m seeing third eye blind, which will be a blast from the past. so excited to hear the meth song*. heading down there with megan, and it should be a grand old time!
  3. i’ve got a plan for thanksgiving, even though jane is the only one coming. nate has the whole week off, so at least he’ll be around too. but it’s not going to be stressful because i’m going to try to make almost everything the day before so we’ll just have leftovers, hahaha! that way at least everything doesn’t have to be done at the same time.
  4. stan just instigated snuggle time!!! gotta go!


*semi-charmed kinda life

that was fun

that was fun

remember when i went to california?

that was 3 years ago! i’d be ok with being back there now. what a fun time!

on the plus side, i have a conference in orlando in march, and my boss and i are already planning on going to HP world while we’re there 🙂 i invited jane, so i’m hoping she’ll be able to come for a couple days. liz has already declined and i’ve told her she can’t complain about not going to HP world twice.



i was doing a little poking around to see if there were some weird word origins for word wednesday, and i ran across “give the cold shoulder”, which we all know. like the silent treatment. passive aggressive ignoring. we’re minnesotans. we’re good at this.

but, turns out the origin also made me think of another minnesota thing: the long, minnesota goodbye. you know. ok, gotta go! but first, it was great to see you. do you want anything to take home? when will i see you next? gotta hug 40 people 3 times each. oh, maybe i can stay for another 15 minutes for some ice cream (my dad hahaha). yeah. we’re NOT good at goodbye.

the origin of giving the cold shoulder comes from medieval england when people would visit eatch other. when the host was like, hey, you gotta leave, now. s/he would give the guest a cold piece of meat from the shoulder of beef, pork, or mutton. it was actually a polite way to say “get out.”

so i can see where it’s a little similar, but also different? i would also like to know more. was the lunch meat a way of saying “hey i don’t like you that much you need to go”? or was it “ugh you offended me with this thing get out of my sight because i can’t look at you right now and i’m mad”? and did these medieval peeps give the cold cuts to their loved ones just whenever? can you imagine in the middle of a serious fight, a wife just starts flinging pieces of meat at her husband! or what if poor people just show up at houses so they can get some food?

this just opens up so many more things i want to know about this saying.