Friday, November 27, 2015

I hope everyone had a nice Thanksgiving

It's the holiday season and then shortly it will be the New Year. 2016. Wow. I remember the 1999 Millennium panic like it was yesterday. Come to think of it, I remember Flower Power of the 1960s, Race Riots in the 1970s, high collared, ruffled prairie shirts of the 1980s, and the grunge fascination of the 1990s like they happened yesterday. The decades pile up.

Yesterday I looked in the fridge and what did I see? Withering cukes, not too tasty to me. Yet when they arrived in what is likely to be our last Bountiful Basket, I'd vowed to use them.  Since I had a package of stale Pita pockets (I buy them that way, they're usually marked down only 50 cents at my regular store) I decided to make raita.

The Pitas being stale already meant they wold become great Pita chips. All you have to do is take a Pita disk, brush or rub with olive oil, and sprinkle with flavoring, garlic salt would do, or in my case I used lemon-pepper salt. Then cut them into triangles. Pop them into a preheated 375 oven for 10 minutes or so and you have a nice chip. Watch them carefully as the done-to-burned moment comes in a flash.

Raita is a cool yogurt dip favored in Indian cuisine because of so much heat inherent in Indian dishes. Curry, Tandoori=spicy...raita is a usual accompaniment to cool the palate.

I used my plain yogurt, and splashed out the yogurt water pooling on top. It makes a thicker raita. Chop cukes small, salt, and let drain or blot. I mixed in some lemon juice, lemon-pepper salt, and the cukes. Let set for a while to let flavors blend. Here is a photo of the result-

Additionally, I made Lentil Soup, Brown Rice and Pea salad, Asian Slaw with mayo-mustard sauce for wraps, and figured out what to do with 15 tangerines from my Bountiful Basket and my BB friend who gave me hers too- I'll candy them.

Also on the docket yesterday was a promise to myself to push away from the computer and read a lot. These are my books currently on deck or in various states of progression:

The Anatomy of Evil is by Will Thomas and part of a wonderful detective series called Barker and Llewellyn. It is a series set in London in the late 1890s where Barker and his sidekick Llewellyn solve a number of crimes on the gritty but not gross streets of the city. Well written and fast paced, it occasionally features Charles Spurgeon, the Director of the newly instituted Scotland Yard, and other notables who had lived at the time.

One Minute After You Die by Erwin Lutzer is a biblical look at what the Bible has to say about heaven, not heavenly tourism where someone comes back and gushes out what they have allegedly seen while they were 'clinically dead'.

I'm in the middle of Angels Evil & Elect by C. Fred Dickason. Apparently Dickason was known for his biblical, scholarly studies on angels, and so far I find it illuminating and fascinating. Ever since I listened to a John MacArthur sermon on Revelation and he pointed out just how much the angels do (execute all the judgments, for example) I have been fascinated with these kindred creatures. Kindred in the sense that they are created by God but are not human, yet we both worship Him. The holy ones among us both, anyway.

The Nov-Dec issues is my last issue of TeaTime. A friend at work subscribed to it as a Christmas gift for me and I enjoy the magazine tremendously. I'll probably re-subscribe in February. The word search, lol...I have been placed as para-support in second grade this year in addition to being in Kindergarten. Occasionally the teacher makes a word search out of the vocabulary words, or holiday word searches for the kids to work on independently. When a student can't seem to find a word and comes over to ask me for help, it's fun. I get addicted. Apparently word searches are relaxing and soothing for kids. I find them to be so as well. I like to do the search while watching an inane show to keep my hands busy and my mind half-occupied.

Speaking of televised inanity, during this week of vacation I've watched

Today's Special: "In this super-feel-good foodie comedy, young Manhattan chef Samir rediscovers his heritage and his passion for life through the enchanting art of cooking Indian food." I wouldn't call it a comedy, but it is a nice movie.

Quartet: "At a home for retired musicians, the annual concert to celebrate Verdi's birthday is disrupted by the arrival of Jean, an eternal diva and the former wife of one of the residents." Featuring Maggie Smith, Pauline Collins, Billy Connolly, Michael is a visual feast, and auditory triumph, and a sweetly affecting movie.

Famous Nathan: (documentary). "A Coney Island-inspired, densely-layered visually dynamic documentary portrait of the life and times of the original Nathan's Famous, created in 1916 by filmmaker Lloyd Handwerker's grandparents, Nathan and Ida Handwerker. 30 years in the making, Famous Nathan interweaves decades-spanning archival footage, family photos and home movies, an eclectic soundtrack and never-before-heard audio from Nathan: his only interview, ever as well as compelling, intimate and hilarious interviews with the dedicated band of workers, not at all shy at offering opinions, memories and the occasional tall tale." An interesting film about a grandson's search for who his grandfather really was. He never found out, but along the way we learned of Nathan Handwerker's backstory from 1892 Poland to immigration to the US at the turn of the century, a rags to riches by the sweat of your brow kind of story that never gets old.

TV, The Man in the High Castle: an alt-history television series that depicts if WWII had been won by the Japanese and Nazis. The US is divided into threes, the left coast being the Japanese spoils, the east coast being the Nazi's, and the middle strip a neutral zone. The show is visually stunning, with an America of the 1960s that looks much the same as it actually did, until the camera pans over a payphone dial with a swastika in the middle, or a poster of the Fuhrer. The series examines oppression and freedom, and it's chilling.

Battle Creek, starring Dean Winters. I like Dean Winters. He's like Donal Logue, everywhere, great at everything, yet unknown. He is a rumpled, old fashioned detective in Battle Creek Michigan resentful of his new partner, a spiffy, technologically adept FBI agent. Fox has canceled the show already and either by the end of the 13 episode series I'll agree with their decision or mourn yet another one-season wonder cancellation like Hope Island, Terriers, Enlisted, and The Finder.

Beachfront Bargain Hunt: (HGTV) Because I like beaches, bright colors (the Hitler tv show and Battle Creek are dark, metaphorically AND literally) and also because I like being mentally critical of whiny, entitled rich people who think having only three bathrooms isn't enough and having to walk across the street to the beach is a burden. I also enjoy looking up the buyers afterwards to see if they are a) divorced yet, b) overextended already or c) renting their 'dream property' instead of living there happily ever after.

And, of course I collaged a little, napped a little, wrote a little, and got started making my Christmas gifts. Last Friday I was invited to a sumptuous dinner at a friend's church and it was relaxing and wonderful. Tomorrow I'm going on gadabout with a friend to take photos of the scenic places in the county, after buying a muffin and coffee of course to sustain us for the drive. Next Friday I'm headed to a Christmas White Elephant Party. So all is well both at home and in my thriving social life. LOL. How are things with you?


Anonymous said...

So glad you have had an opportunity to relax, read and watch some interesting TV shows/series during your "down time" this week. By doing so you are feeding your spirit and creativity, and we all benefit through your blogs. Thank you for continuing your writing and for sharing your knowledge with your readers.

Here is a slice of my life--Thanksgiving was a "too full day" spent with local family, but missing family elsewhere. It is a time of year when I am reminded of the gifts of family, food and shelter with which we are blessed. Sharing those blessings is a year-round commitment, but when I see how full our table is and how much we all tend to eat during the holidays I wonder, how can we do more.

Saw an excellent but very sobering movie today, "Spotlight," about the Catholic Church coverup of child abuse by priests. One is struck by the length of time the coverup was successful, but also by the fact that children in low income communities were frequently the victims and that these priests were moved from like community to like community every few years. The list of cities, states and countries where this practice was discovered was overwhelming. Certainly a huge indictment of the Catholic Church. Need I say more.

On a postive note, I am a little more than a month away from finishing a year-long commitment to read the entire Bible. Am learning so much, taking lots of notes, recording thoughts and am excited to start over on January 1st. Also, on an ongoing basis I am augmenting my bible-reading with a daily selection from: The Valley of Vision, Voices From the Past (Puritan Devotional Readings,) a book on Martin Luther, and one on Jonathan Edwards. Recently finished J.I. Packer's Knowing God. All wonderful resources.

Praying blessings on your continued work. Sandy

Grace to You said...

I've missed you! I've been a little worried about you I just feel silly, worrying about you while you were busy having fun. :)

In between bouts of worrying I've been exploring our new town, researching algebra curricula, playing in the snow (three storms already this month!!), visiting churches, swimming laps (first time in 15 years!), taking pictures of mountains, and looking for the Lord Jesus to return.

Even so, come!

Elizabeth Prata said...

Hi Sandy,

Wow that movie sounds terribly depressing but then again the state of unregenerated man is depressing. I'm impressed with your reading chops!

Grace To You thanks so much for your concerns! I have a veterinarian bill to pay so I've been working extra at the AfterSchool program, and trying to stay healthy amid lots of sinus and virus at school. I'm impressed by the swimming! I'm glad your move went smoothly and you're adjusting to new environs. Not so impressed with the snow. :(

Grace to You said...

My husband parks on the street and had to go to work today so I cleaned his car off this morning and was shoveling the front walk when he came out of the house. He just laughed and said, "You're in your element, aren't you?" I was...I love snow!

Elizabeth Prata said...

Wow, what a thoughtful thing to do! That's like gold, to have someone shovel the car out. Glad you like snow, someone has to!

Grace to You said...

Hmmm...I think I'll have my husband read your comment. :)