Lupe’s Recipe Swap

Lupe suggested a recipe swap/exchange/post and it’s that time of the year when good food is one of the few Sure Things we have left so here we are. Feel free to post links, descriptions that aren’t really recipes but that will lead to people eating well, and actual recipes. Mostly let’s just distract ourselves from the cold and politics and international news by talking about delicious comfort food. (You get to define “comfort food.”)

My contribution: Chicken Marsala.

Happiness is Great Old Romance Movies

I recently tripped over a video I loved so much I used to teach it to my high school classes. It’s from a Kurt Vonnegut short story, “Who Am I This Time?” and it’s a delightful romance starring a very young Susan Sarandon and Christopher Walken (filmed in 1982 for American Playhouse) about two socially inept people who meet when they’re cast in a small town production of A Streetcar Named Desire. (If you search, you can find it for free, but I always think that’s iffy.)

See also His Girl Friday (1940); Charade (the 1963 Grant/Hepburn version); How to Steal a Million (1966); What’s Up, Doc? (1972); Truly, Madly Deeply (1990); basically anything pre-twenty-first century, old enough and possibly obscure so as to be a happy discovery. Not to mention The Mummy (Fraser of course, 1999) if you like a little horror with your romance or Shadowlands (1993) if you need a cleansing ugly cry.

Great old movies make me happy. What made you happy this week?

This is a Good Book Thursday, January 27, 2022

I’ve been re-reading a lot for the comfort of a sure thing. But aalmost as good as a Sure Thing is the Sorta Sure Thing, like when an author I love has a new book out and I get my hands on it. Like the third book in the Deadly Education series (next year) or the next Peter Grant (April), or the fourth book in the Time Police series or the second in The Book of Firsts series or the sixth (seventh?) in the Murderbt series (who knows when we’ll see those). The Sorta Sure Things don’t always pan out, but even then the authors are so good that their meh books are infinitely better than other people’s best work.

In the spirit of Sure Thing week, I am now going to reheat a pizza (I’m working my way through the Villa’s insane list of pizzas, the food equivalent of a fiction series, and tonight is a Cheese Steak Pizza with mushrooms, onions & extra cheese) and reread Loretta Chase’s Difficult Dukes.

So what did you read this week that was a Sure Thing? Or a Sorta Sure Thing, we’re open-minded here.

Working Wednesday, January 26, 2022

For some reason, I picked up my crochet again and started making hats. I know why I picked hats: they go fast. Mollie had asked me if I had a hat pattern for a hat she’d worn out, and I didn’t, so I reverse engineered it. It took four tries and some of them were pretty plain (she likes plain) so after I e-mailed her the pattern I wrote, I noodled around with surface crochet and weaving on the plain ones and had a wonderful time. Then I found a huge snarl of multiple yarns around my power cords and cut the cords free, and thought, You know, some of these are really pretty, so I knotted the ends together and combined three strands to make Snarl Hats. Then I looked at the yarns I’d discarded from that batch, and they were all gray and depressing, so I combined them with a red strand and made Snarl Hat 2. I can do about two hats a night and the sense of accomplishment is so happy-making. Although now I have a lot of hats.

And I started this scarf because sometimes you need something bright:

What did you make/do this week?

Random Happiness

My stray three-pawed cat fell asleep beside me the other night. On her back. Rolled right over like a doofus, belly up, completely secure next to me. I laughed, but it made me so happy to know that she feels so safe.

I was desperate to buy cheap shoes the other day, and ended up at Marshall’s buying stretch ankle boots for twenty bucks. They make me look like a Disney character, huge feet on skinny legs, and they have glittery swirls on them and I am so not a glittery-swirls kind of woman, but I love the damn things and they make me happy whenever I put them on.

My house is an absolute nightmare–too much stuff, single-pane windows, tiny rooms, a crumbling foundation, and an antique septic system–but every time I walk inside, I love it more: a funky cottage built by amateurs in the 1940s with a lot of love that still shows. It’s just a happy place.

Things don’t need to be perfect–like having four paws–to make for happiness.

How were you imperfectly happy this week?

Happiness is Warmth

My mailbox fell over because my mail carrier keeps abusing it by shoving packages in it, so now I have to put up a new one and our low is around three degrees tonight, so when the new one comes tomorrow, I’m going to be freezing out there with my sledge hammer, warmed only by my rage.

Actually, it’s freezing everywhere here, it’s cold inside, too, (old cottage) in spite of electric blankets and extra heaters. I wrote Krissie to bitch about the cold and found out that their high up in Vermont is six below. She said, “They build us tough up here.” I wrote back “Down here, they build us smart enough not to move someplace where six below is the high.”

Happiness is not being where six below is the high.

What made you warm with joy this week?