Before I forget…

I started my busy day in a grumpy mood because everything was going wrong. I couldn’t get the cat out of the living room. I couldn’t get the garage door to close. I tried to start and de-ice my car with the wrong set of keys. Etc.

Later on I went on a mission to drop some boxes to UPS (something which went wrong on Saturday). I did so at the UPS downtown.  Being so close I also  visited chocolate cafe and got a Mexican hot chocolate (chocolate with cinnamon and chile powder-  not bad) to cure my grumpiness, bought some treats for my nice Aunt and talked to a girl with interesting glasses. I asked her where to find the bathroom and learned that it had its own special elevator to the basement and may or may not require a non existent key.

Eventually with the help of building security I found said elevator and embarked on my bathroom journey down a lime green abandoned hallway with many doors. Upon leaving the elevator I tripped over a hallway speed bump (who is driving down here?) and walked past  many warnings that I was being videotaped (I don’t really believe them, it looked like a decent place to die down there and there was nothing to steal). Eventually I found the restroom which was unlocked and tiny. There were two stalls which doors could not be opened at the same time due to space.

Upon doing my business I noticed a lot of stall scrawlings about “for a very good time call….” and “wanna get high? call…..” etc. Are visitors to an old building which boasts typically cigars, jewelry, and chocolate so salacious? It made me wonder what I would find if I called these numbers. I don’t necessarily want any weed or good times (well maybe the latter, but I’d need more info) I just want to know what kind of person finds it necessary to deface every bathroom no matter how dingy or nice. In Athens, OH you cannot find a single bathroom without some kind of sharpie’d nonsense graffiti regarding bar “shuffles”, feminist garbage, rage against those who’ve scratched out prior scribblings or who’ve been awful to eachother, or who loves whom. Even when a bathroom is remodeled or painted, within days it is defaced again. Likewise, yesterday I visited a bar near broad-ripple with plenty of similar contact information laden graffiti, some scuttlebut about a missing robot and a picture of a chihuahua who wanted some weed.

I’m of course most interested in the phone numbers; I have to wonder if it is the dealer/loose woman who is writing these numbers or someone seeking old fashioned revenge. I just kind of want to know who is on the other line,  to call them and find out the deal. Anyhow on my way out of this shithole shitter I hit my head on both sides with the purse hook and stall after banging my door against the other open stall door and forgot this idea until just now. Seems like a good photography/interview project/blog/article for the near future.

Best Christmas Ever

Friday 12-21-

Work Christmas party: go downtown, hang out with Christina Holly and Hope (wow my friends have Christmas-y names), eat tacos

Go home and prepare for Saturday’s Christmas Dinner; Josh smokes a ham and a turkey on his early Xmas gift of fresh peach and cherry wood (unutilized: pear). By Friday I’ve already made mashed potatoes, stuffing, and an Italian creme cake. Get Chinese food delivered for dinner and have a pretty decent vegetable egg roll.

Saturday:

Open gifts with the kids and family. The kids got exactly what they wanted. They even got me 3 candles (one smells and looks like a little cup of coffee), a snow globe, some candy (yum) and a craft 🙂 we love crafts. Later we watch the Simpsons movie

Sunday: Go with kids to Incredible Pizza (kind of a highly evolved chuck e. cheese with better food, decor, laser tag, mini golf, bowling, simulators, bumper cars and go karts). Play ski ball with Josh. Find a cardboard waldo hidden among some arcade games and feel accomplished and earn a free return visit. Spend our virtual tickets on a Hershey’s scented candle. Stop on the way home to give beer gifts to my favorite brewery.

Monday- Christmas Eve- do errands with Josh, take a Starbucks break. Santa brings Josh a copy of Dear God No! to watch. Begin to watch Portlandia.

Tuesday- Real Christmas! Go with Josh, his mom and his grandma to Hoosier Park Casino. First time at a casino 🙂 Get gifted $50 in gambling money. Lose $10. Go to the buffet, eat prime rib, candied sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, cranberries, bourbon bread pudding, two different types of cheese cake and another kind of cake. Go back to slots, lose $20, lose 15 more and resign self to penny slots with last $5. Eventually at the very end of the day I turned it into $55 by squatting on the same $.20 machine after the lady next to me gives me her last $.19. A fun trip! Drop off Grandma and pet a wandering cat who looks and talks like my Mokers.

Go home and get more presents. Josh got me 2 movies (it would have been 1 but I alerted him that I almost bought the 2nd and he just gave it to me so I wouldn’t), a new Gorod CD (with a bird on it), a Mr  McGibblets doll decorated for Christmas, two types of starbucks Cocoa, some herbal tea and a charlie brown Christmas tree 🙂 This is not to mention the blender and the vacuum I received in November.

Josh’s mom got me some more tiny candles, some nice Arbonne stuff and some hello kitty pj’s. She got us both a colts lawn ornament for our pa-Dio 🙂 The cats and dogs got me an Alice Cooper Christmas ornament and a GWAR (green) Christmas record (though we don’t have a record player but that’s okay, it’s the thought that counts).

I also Facebook talked with my mom a little as we tend to do around holidays. Considering whether to collide our universes later this week. As usual she doesn’t seem to care either way. Watch Mr. Death, think a lot, watch more Portlandia, eat cake. Wake up on Wednesday to a blizzard thankful we’ve stockpiled cocoa. back to work now 😦 Wishing it was the weekend again!

Also, Juicing is not going so great this week. Ever since I went to Jackie O’s last weekend, my diet has reverted to avalanche pizza, fluff, beer, cookies, coffee, and holiday food with the occasional juice interruption. I’ll get back on it though I swear!

Day 3 Juice flub

4 tomatoes on the vine

2.5 carrots

1 lemon

2 snack packs of celery

2 jalapeno peppers

The peppers were a mistake in retrospect. At first taste my healthy mary is delicious but then the slow lingering burn of too many peppers sets in. It’s been a long time since I was able to put half a bottle of hot sauce in my smoothies but i guess it’s also been a long time since i could drink half a case of shitty beer in one session too. Key Lime Sparkling water chaser it is!

As the day goes on I’m pretty much used to the hotness.

Last night made another batch of bananorangeapple juice, drank half before dinner and half this morning. Added cinnamon and the whole concoction came out tasting like a spiced pear shake. A+!

So far I’m digging juice because my skin looks healthier, I’m starting to be less tired, and I don’t have the urge to drink coffee all damn day long. I’m somewhat less interested in sugar but it’s hard to resist chocolate when it’s nearby.

I talked to my juice loving student and she showed me another recipe website which looks pretty cool: http://www.beautifulonraw.com/

She also taught me about something called natural horsemanship which seems to be like horsewhispering and treating ponies like people. I learned the word horsenality which is right up there with cattitude. Always teaching me stuff, those students!!

http://www.parellinaturalhorsetraining.com/horsenality-horses/

For my next trick i think I’m going to do carrots, sweet potato, apples, and celery. Or whatever happens when I forget that I wrote that down when I get downstairs.

Adventures in Juice- Ninja Review: Day 2

So my awesome boyfriend got me a Ninja blender on black Friday for early Christmas which I was very excited about. It got here about a week ago but I just tried it yesterday. I’ve written about juice cravings before and was pretty stoked to try.

Image

I went to Walmart and got a sack of little granny smith apples and a sack of oranges. I also got 2 packages of whole carrots, 2 lemons, 4 bananas, 4 tomatoes and some celery. I was a little miffed that they didn’t have any strawberries. Overall I had no idea what I was doing besides knowing that my mom used to make apple carrot juice for me. I’m dreaming also of a spicy bloody mary (no booze) with homegrown hot peppers from my freezer.

Last night I made a delicious sage colored smoothie of 2 little apples, 3 oranges, a banana, and some ice. It was amazingly good and I drank it all that evening. My man even tried a sip and he is not so into juice or fruit.

Today I made a smoothie of about 5 carrots, 4 green apples, a lemon, some ice and some water (after it just wouldn’t liquefy . This recipe (or… list of non specific ingredients) was suggested by one of my students who is always inspiring me to think about or try healthy stuff. It’s decent but it seems… chewy. I don’t know if there’s a way to do carrots right with a blender but I don’t really care. She also suggested drinking juices within 15 minutes so they don’t lose their nutrients and storing them in the fridge in a mason jar filled to the brim to avoid oxidation. I don’t know if the 15 minutes thing is true, but I can’t stop drinking the juice so that’s not an issue. The oxidation I believe because of beer that’s tasted worse after being left half drank in a growler.

I am still new to the rules and practices of juice. My friend Angie has a juicer (separates pulp from the juice) and suggested this site: http://www.jointhereboot.com/tag/smoothie/

I was glad she had some suggestions because when I was googling for smoothie recipes I was finding gross shit like hiding brocolli and spinach from your kids in peach and berry smoothies. I was also glad I asked for a blender and not a juicer after much deliberation because she said she doesn’t juice like she used to anymore because there’s so much damn pulp she doesn’t know what to do with it all. Plus I loved my (not really mine) vitamix of yesteryear. 

I don’t know if its acceptable or unhealthy to sip juice all day. I had a big glass for breakfast around 10 or 1030 and now its noon and i’m drinking the spare mason jar full. Feeling kind of empty inside. Fruit has a lot of sugar but I’m avoiding refined carbs (white sugar) so I don’t know if the fiber counteracts the sugar or if smoothie-ing can actually make you gain weight. Research needs to be done and it will probably be done by my mouth. Hoping not to ever get burnt out on Ninja-ing! 

Food review: Yves Meatless Ground

Yves Meatless Ground

Just say “No” to Yves

Let me start this post by saying I got 4 hours of sleep and I’m pretty unfocused and unproductive right now. The most productive thing to do might actually be to take a nap but I have to make my feelings about this fake meat known for some compulsory reason.

My battle with onions is well known. There are onions in everything. One might think that onions make a good inexpensive filler or that there’s an assumption I think that onions make food taste “home made” or “good”. I don’t mind them but they make my boyfriend sick so I try to avoid them like the plague.

I mistakenly grabbed this product because ground fake meat is  becoming increasingly hard to find or justify paying for especially with the abundance of obligatory onions. i sometimes default to ground chicken or turkey for tacos but its just not as good. i needed a damn taco. I thought I’d bought this stupidly named product and liked it before but I was thinking of Q’uorn, another stupidly named product made from mushroom protein that they didn’t have. I thought I could trust Yves because they make edible veggie corn dogs.

I habitually scan ingredient lists to search for unnecessary onions and garlic. I didn’t see any listed in the ingredients. I went home, cooked it in a pan with some liquid smoke and taco dust and discovered many cm square pieces of translucent onion, so many that I couldn’t even pick them out.  When I did a double take of the box, I discovered onions were the THIRD INGREDIENT.

If you’re not familiar with how ingredient lists work, they order them from the most abundant ingredient to the smallest trace ingredients in order. Being the grouchy kitchen bitch that I am, I promptly returned the offending crumbles to Kroger to get my NINE DOLLARS back. Fuck you, fake meat. We had stringy chicken breast tacos and it just wasn’t the same even though they were ok because I made them.

And on a side note, I think marketing realistic meat alternatives to vegans is a little like marketing dildos to lesbians. Also, since when does meat HAVE to taste like onions, garlic and spices? Just make the fake meat “meat” flavored or even nothing flavored and let me work out the spices.

Juice rant

A conversation with one of my students sparked an old obsession with healthful lifestyles and most of all juicing. She has similar health problems to mine and is on a constant quest for relief without health insurance. We talk about all kinds of out of the box alternative therapies and supplements but it’s just not in my nature to travel across the country to go to this sort of practitioner that I am not sure I believe in for a disorder I’m not sure I even believe in. I mostly live vicariously through her adventures. Since her own journey and initial multi-hundred dollar  investment in supplements, I’m pretty sure she’s debunked it as a useful solution as well. Recently she got me interested in Swedish Bitters which I’ve yet to sample but she swears by them. The best thing she has found that works for making her feel better is the nutrients from fresh juice.

I’m kind of sick of drugs. My rheumatologist will allow me the grace of their presence and continue to bill me but let me know there’s nothing they could provide me for relief unless I wanted nerve pain pills. I don’t know exactly what those are but it sounds a little drastic and like the opposite of living. I’m already on three daily medications that I can’t tell if I need or will ever be done with or not. That’s plenty.

I have had several flings with juice in the past. I was fed in such a way when I was growing up that I love the texture, flavor, and sensations of fruit. Even now some of my favorite beers are stouts with a hint of dark fruit or nuts, though beer is kind of the opposite of healthy juice. When I was six, my mom got on one of her obsessive health kicks and bought a juice-man. She would make my brother and I drink green apple carrot juice which was actually pretty damn good (i thought…. my brother– who cares what he thought).  I don’t know why she started this, I think it was one of those things she wanted to try and then figured we needed to do it too because misery loves company. She later got into tonics and wheat germ and other stuff she soon after abandoned but I did not have to partake. When I was even younger (3-6) there was a ritual where my father would make my brother and I drink a can of prune juice every night (my brother was born with a fucked up stomach and I was along for the ride) and we weren’t permitted to go to bed until it produced the desired effect. I  recall even having to drink cans of it in a motel en route to a Florida vacation. That’s probably where I got such a high juice tolerance actually as well as at least one of my freudian fixations.

Much like my on again off again childhood vegetarianism, juicing was bound to come back. When I was 21, my father was diagnosed with a fatal brain tumor. I quit school to come home and keep him company for the 18 months until he passed away. Watching him every day and through our often senseless interactions, I decided whatever was happening to him would never happen to me. I didn’t much cut out my tendencies to swill beer and liquor, but borrowed my grandma’s $400 vitamix and began juicing one or two of my meals throughout the day. The only thing I remember vividly making is tomato juice with a fuckload of pepper sauce. Other meals frequently involved grilled vegetables/veggie “meat”, lamb, tacos and taco accessories, grilled cheese, or homemade pizza. I got down to about 110# (a loss of maybe 30-40 lbs) unintentionally. This all came to an abrupt end when my father decided he wanted the blender OUT OF THE HOUSE (I can only assume this was a message directly from God or similar) and I eventually went back to being an average size/dieted person.

Since then my journey of health has caused my weight to balloon up and down as a result of diet, a longterm dosing of steroids, apathy and laziness. I don’t really care about weight I’d just like to feel good and have more energy and less pain.

Now I find myself at a crossroads. My boyfriend and I are trying to eat healthier. My garden is full of directionless tomatoes and peppers. I am thirsty and probably a little malnourished. I did some googling around for juicing options last night and will probably resort to just getting a regular blender from walmart and running it until it blows the motor out, returning and repeating.