Cherry Saturday, October 6, 2018

Today is part of Walk Your Dog Week (Oct. 1 – 7).  

It’s difficult to walk my dogs.  Milton is moving like an old man lately because of his arthritis, Veronica’s legs are extremely short, so she gets tired covering a minimal amount of ground.  Mona was born with no knees in her back legs, which means she basically takes a step forward with her front legs and then hops her back legs to follow which means she gets tired fast.  

So our big outings are down to the end of the driveway and across the one-lane road into Kathleen’s massive yard and then a turn to the left down past our mailbox and into Carl’s yard to see if Jackson wants to come out to play.  Jackson is basically a grumpy old man in tiny terrier form, but Milton and Mona love him, so he will occasionally stand on the deck and let them appreciate him.  Then we turn around and walk back and take a nap.  

If you don’t have a dog, today is also Noodle Day.  As far as I’m concerned, every day is Noodle Day–chicken noodle soup, stroganoff over noodles, tuna noodle casserole–but that’s probably just me.

33 thoughts on “Cherry Saturday, October 6, 2018

  1. That looks so yummy! The last time I had stroganoff was a dreadful experience. My mother made it. But she refuses to cook with anything she deems unhealthy, such as salt, butter, sour cream, beef. And she’s not a skilled cook. She usually just omits things from the recipes that are on her blacklist. And her ingredient substitutions, when she makes any, are always scary. None of this makes stroganoff an ideal choice. Her so-called beef stroganoff was a tasteless mass that looked like wet concrete. The texture of everything was awful. And while I’ve never tasted actual concrete, I feel as if I have. Concrete slurry sauce over gluey noodles and bits of gristle. I will never understand her food attitude. Why choose a recipe and refuse to follow it? If she had just served water and her famous steamed-to-greyness broccoli it would have been more appealing. Ah, memories.

    1. Growing up we lived on a few acres and grew everything ourselves and my dad and brothers hunted every fall so there would be meat on the table that we didn’t have to buy and my mom canned fruits and veggies. So everything was made from scratch and pretty much organic. And my mom made a wonderful stew. So fast forward 20 years, all the kids are grown, finances aren’t so tight and I come home for a visit. My mom “I made one of your favorites – stew” And I am “YES”. And she says “I have a new ingredient. Your dad really likes it”. “Mom, this tastes like Campbell’s tomato soup” And that was her new ingredient. Some substitutions just don’t work.

      1. My mother wasn’t a good cook–Dad always used to say, ‘No one can be good at everything; she was brilliant nurse.’ She had a tendency to burn things, particularly carrots. But she also had a sense of humour, so I grew up believing that burnt carrots were an exotic dish called Caramelled Carrots.

        1. In California, Charred Carrots dressed in balsamic vinegar are a thing. Your mother, ahead of her time.

  2. I don’t have a dog and the one time I tried to train my cat Aubrey to walk on a leash and harness, he made it clear that he thought I had to many fingers and he would do his best to remove some for me if I thought I was going to put that contraption on him.

  3. I can guarantee you that when my children tried to walk their guinea pig they went more slowly and covered less ground. They never got off the front lawn.

    I am told some guinea pigs like walks but I have no evidence of that.

    I think it’s time for noodle kugel.

  4. Met a couple of daft puppies up on the hillfort just now. The sun’s come out, so everyone’s out for a walk (i.e. probably a dozen people walking round the ramparts: not exactly crowded).

    I had spaghetti carbonara last week, so need to lay off pasta for a bit. Planning my usual French potato omlette tonight, with rocket and spinach from my balcony.

    I’m flat out with planning for the new house. Digesting the survey (nothing dire, but a number of things that are likely to fail in the next few years) and working out what I really want/need to do before moving in – because things like taking up the laminate floors (which it turns out needs doing because they’re making the walls damp by preventing the quarry-tiled floor underneath from ‘breathing’) and removing the horrid fake fireplace and painting over the pink walls would be much easier to do when there’s no furniture.

    Juggling what’s worth doing because it would make me much happier with how much money I can afford to spend. Also, trying to understand the building and what my best options are for it.

    The original front parlour has been knocked through into the back sitting room, which means that under the laminate is a wooden floor in the posh front room and quarry tiles over earth in the back. The surveyor wants me to sand and seal the wood and oil the tiles, and then cover most of the floor with large rugs – as a cheaper solution than digging out the tiles and subfloor and replacing them with a damp-proof course, insulation and concrete.

    It’s a sensible solution, though I wonder what I’ll find under the laminate, especially in the join between the rooms. I’d planned on fitted carpet: can’t trip over it, and just need to run a vacuum over it. But sounds like that wouldn’t be breathable enough.

    1. I’d take quarry tiles and wood floors over laminate any time. We just bought a house with fitted carpet that we don’t like. I don’t dare to hope there will be wood under it.

      1. I’d go for the wood; I’m just visualizing cracked, uneven and damp tiles. But I daresay it’ll be full of character, which would be much better than the laminate (which I do loathe, so at least I’m now justified in removing it).

        1. I have just installed at great expensive hexagonal quarry tiles over my ground floor because in the past – and I assume again in the future -there has been water leakage. And tile floors are incredibly forgiving of standing water and spills. And if you can locate the same color of quarry tile, a good installer can cut out damaged tiles and install a new tile (this is not for an installer who has never done this before or you end up with a mess). And if you have them cleaned then sealed, it is really easy keeping them clean: a quick vacuum and a once over with a damp mop. Plus if you put rugs on them, you can always shake out the rugs a couple of times a year.

          After the first time I shook out a rug that had been regularly vacuumed and saw all the dust and stuff that came out, I got rid of all my fitted carpets because imagine how much stuff was still buried in the pile. With asthma you need to keep dust and mold out of your environment.

  5. I made stroganoff earlier this week–lots in the freezer now–so today I’m making beef noodle soup and sour cream chicken with noodles. Noodles everywhere. And I think I’m going to make deviled eggs with diced peppers and onions and celery so if I feel the need for egg salad, I can just mush them between two pieces of whole wheat. Plus that’ll make the deviled eggs healthier.

    In case you couldn’t tell, I’m hungry.

  6. We’re working on walking politely on-leash with Phryne the Bat-Eared Catsnek Doggo – she’s very much a sighthound so tends to be convinced that all the squirrels for a three-mile radius are taunting her and need correction. I doubt we’ll all come to the proper understanding by tomorrow, but hey, progress not perfection.

    1. We have 3 years old whippets and the key is consistency and treats. Ours will now go off leash and be called off squirrels and neighbor’s chickens. I have no idea if it will work if they see a rabbit – they’ve never seen one before and knowing their logic – hey, you never said rabbits!! Good luck.

  7. My dog and I have been walking pretty consistently since summer heat finally faltered. He gets very excited and is poorly behaved for the first 10 minutes, but then settles down.

    Unless he sees a squirrel. Then he’s crazed again. This happens twice every block.

  8. This morning we went to see our grandson’s football game. (I didn’t know that 12 year olds were allowed to tackle) They won 18 – 0. In the meantime after the game the coach gathered the boys and brought the class tests at school that all the boys got 100% on. He named the boys and gave them their papers. Our grandson was not one of those boys. Being the sensitive soul that he is he cried on the way home in his parents car. Maybe this is one way to show that kids can be a scholar and an athlete if they put enough effort into it. But couldn’t they just be congratulated at the win and also playing the game? This is a grandmother’s rant.

    On the way home we did some grocery shopping because one of our granddaughter’s is staying over tomorrow night and bringing a friend and we needed kid food in the house like ice cream and bread to make French toast in the morning (Columbus Day). I think I’ll give her a pizza wheel to cut them. I also got my Pumpkin Spice coffee creamer. Long story short for lunch we had chicken noodle soup with leftover vegetables added. Just the ticket!

  9. I am missing my dog so much, after losing her in June. I miss her big body backed up against my chair.

  10. It’s funny, I miss my old doggo more, now that we have new pupper. I’m being much more careful with what I expect from pupper and backing off a bit seems to have worked. He jumps less and accepts pats, head/neck/shoulder/tummy rubs, and now leans against my legs from time to time. Maybe I’ll start by just walking around with the leash in my hand. And gradually phase it in by clipping it on but not walking, just sitting.

    Mmm, noodle fixings. I like Thai flavoured chicken and noodles.

  11. I don’t normally eat a lot of noodles but I’m on a 6 week gluten loading diet, to be followed by a test for celiac disease, so I’ll be eating pasta galore. It’s occurred to me that I’d better scoff all the delicious gluten I can now in case the test’s positive, so this is the month of cake, stroganoff, waffles, pasta salad, and everything else I can think of. Gluten free substitutes just aren’t the same.

  12. We have two dogs. Shredder, the Maltese, is exceedingly slow, terrier Petey speeds with excess. On solo-person walks, one of us spends a lot of time on the sidewalk, arms outstretched with a leashed dog pulling from each direction. Passersby seem to feel this is comic.

    St. Francis of Assisi’s Feast Day, I am told, was Thursday, October 4th. We walked our dogs the few blocks to the Episcopal Church for the Drive By animal blessing. Shredder and Petey were each prayed over and wished a long, healthy and happy life. They paid attention. The certificate is colorful and on thick, quality paper. Doggy behavior since has been much holier. Betting is that state won’t hold much longer.

    1. Whenever I have a spiritual experience – such as sitting in a talk by HH The Dalai Lama or similar, I also behave much better afterwards. 😜

      My Catholic friends refer to the feeling of holiness after a retreat as “going to the mountain.” The state doesn’t hold unless I reiterate by reading good philosophy and meditating.

  13. Okay. I can’t take any more. Tonight we will have pasta with Alice Water’s Smoked Trout with Caviar cream sauce. Easy, delicious and of almost no nutritional value. The salad with be carrying the whole nutritional load.

    1. Salad holds nutritional value? For decades I’ve been eschewing on the grounds it’s basically green water. I’ll have to reconsider. OTOH, Smoked Trout with Caviar cream sauce over pasta seems off-the-charts loaded with protein and carbo.

      1. Loads of vitamins and micro-nutrients in salad stuff. It’s my favourite. Don’t like mayonnaise or dressing, so I add finely chopped herbs and a bit of lemon juice. Best, of course, picked from your garden and eaten almost immediately.

  14. Today I went to the final sale at what once was my favorite grocery store. Although I enjoyed buying fancy food at 40 percent off, I felt sort of like a vulture picking at a corpse. I hope that the employees will be okay.

  15. No thoughts on dogs or stroganoff, but I had a lovely time today at a Hawaiian festival, a Mini Maker Faire, and going out to my favorite dessert place.

  16. My pup is getting more walks since his back legs don’t go down stairs very well, so we can’t just release him into the backyard. The front has a handicap ramp which is now useful for humans and the four-foots.

    In random thought, I passed a hotel welcoming the National Federation of Grandmothers and my first thought was “we have a union?”. I need to Google to learn what it really is about.

  17. I can’t imagine trying to walk all four of my dogs at once. Even the two little ones are too many at one time. They disparate goals.

    Here is what I imagine would happen if I tried walking all four at once. Oreo would growl and Moose and Zoe for getting to close to me. Moose would retreat and try to go home to his nice safe crate. Depending on her mood, Zoe would either raise a lip at Oreo and ignore her, drop back and shoot disdainful looks at Moose, or attempt to knock Oreo to the ground and dominate her. Oreo does not realize she is a tiny dog. She would try to do the same to zoe. (Oreo is 10 lbs, Zoe is 60 lbx.) Pippin would ignore them all, strain at the leash and bark loudly at anything that moves.

    I would be tangled in leashes going every which way and end up on my ass.

    Noodles are easier.

  18. I’ve always thought that carbs were good food for stressful times. And then I realized my source for that thought was a Dick Francis novel, written 30+ years ago. Hahaha.

    I picked the novel up again because I remembered (or thought I did) that the hero gave a kidnapping victim excellent advice on how to deal with the press (now called “the media”). Of course I found myself re-reading the whole book, “The Danger”, and was reminded that this was the same hero who recommended carbs to minimize stress.

    Anyway, eat carbs and read “The Danger” for a good yarn and for excellent advice on dealing with the press. We may never need the latter (heaven forbid), but one always needs carbs and a good Dick Francis adventure. (Spoiler for those like me who don’t need the grief: No children or dogs die in this book – and I don’t think any horses did either.)

    1. Carbs do have soothing effects, which is why people stress eat carbs, not salads. (Love The Danger, and all the Dick Francis’s written when his wife Mary helped. After she died the books lacked a certain touch.)

  19. We did have pasta this weekend. And it’s not even properly “fall” weather.

    Otherwise a very social weekend, which was good for stress relief.


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