Working Wednesday, November 23, 2022

If you’re not in America, rejoice that you are not making a huge meal with a huge bird in the middle of it. If you are in America, uh, good luck, unless you’re like me and said, “Bah humbug,” and decided to stay home and make spaghetti for one. (I get cranky in the winter.) Which iw just as well since I thought all day today it was Sunday. I can see me now, meeting people at the door on Thanksgiving and saying, “What the hell? It’s Wednesday, go home.” That would be bad.

So what did you work on this week?

61 thoughts on “Working Wednesday, November 23, 2022

  1. I’ve been putting out fires at my day job, helping my MIL navigate early dementia, taking care of two spayed cats and a sick DH. It’s been a week! Today I’m on the road for work and hoping to get in some exercise to help cure the early winter blues and the massive covid weight gain I’ve experienced over the past few years. I binge read The Murderbot Diaries over the past few days and am determined to buy my own copies – they are fantastic and I’m glad i discovered them here.

    I’m Canadian and our Thanksgiving was last month, so no bird here. I’m not feeling the holidays this year either, so I will join you in that “Bah humbug” sentiment. My job will be ending in January so I’m gearing up to get back on the hunt for a new one. So today I plan to just put on some good music while I drive to my meetings and try to relax. Our weather has turned mild, around -3 C – about 28 F I think, I’m not great at the conversion. It will be -30 C here sometime over the next few months so it’s nice to travel in this milder weather.

    Happy Thanksgiving tomorrow to those celebrating. Have some turkey for me and have a great rest of the week. Oh and be careful out there on Black Friday – that seems like a good day to stay home and hide under the blankets to me – too many people! Lol

  2. I was thinking yesterday that I’m glad we just have one winter festival: Christmas is more than enough. It’s looking to be an extreme hermit one – I think the planned rail strikes will probably prevent my friend coming to stay for a few days in the run-up, as she usually does. I must make much more of an effort to invite local friends over during the three weeks of solstice. I’m also brainstorming what I can do as a fun creative project over the three-day holiday (when everyone’s busy with family), especially if the weather’s bad.

    I’m plugging away at my proof-reading. Failing to do more than four hours a day, max – and feeling dreadful when I try. Getting near the end of the angry feminist book; hope to finish that in the next couple of days, and just fill my brain with chickens instead. Fantasizing as usual that my premium bond will come up next month and enable me to give up the day job completely.

  3. I choose to work on Thanksgiving and that has really worked out the best for me and my family. I enjoy a quiet meal at home, not the crazy extended madness that masquerades as Thanksgiving. For the past 8 years, a thin crust pepperoni pizza has been my holiday dinner of choice.

  4. I’m working today and wishing I wasn’t. Then again my company has done some large layoffs so I’m going to be thankful that I can work today at all.

    After work I’ll work on some Christmas decor… which does go up before Thanksgiving but the lights don’t go on until AFTER Thanksgiving.

  5. I did spend my Friday afternoon quilting, and my weekend binding, the llama quilt. I got it in the mail to my sister to arrive on Friday (her birthday is next Sunday). I then found out that she’s on a trip and won’t be home til Tuesday. Hopefully it will be waiting for her.

    – last picture of the llamas

    I’m fiddling around with making small baskets made with woven fabric strips. I found myself buying more supplies for this on Saturday, so I guess that’s the direction I’m going for Christmas gifts. I’ll share a picture when I actually have at least one of them done.

    And DH and I are in charge of the turkey. We’re just doing a breast, since we have fewer people this year. We’ll cook it at our house and schlep it to his sister’s where we are gathering. I need to work out the timing of this, but that’s a math problem for this afternoon. Still wondering if I should brine it or just go with the recipe I found online with a lot of herbed butter applied before cooking.

    Happy holidays!

    1. My sister brined something and we only really noticed the flavours afterwards when we made the sandwiches with the leftovers, so easy lemon and herby butter is good unless you’re leftovers people

    2. Your quilt is so cheerful! Love those Llamas! That also looks like a lot of sewing. Good job!

    3. The main goal of brining is moisture, so if you are worried about the breast drying out, you might want to brine. However, since you don’t have to keep it in the oven until the dark meat is done, you may not need to brine. Or you can leave everything except the salt and sugar out of the brine and slip the herb butter, or most of it, underneath the skin before roasting. That way you can get the best of both recipes without worrying about conflicting seasonings.

  6. I am cooking a turkey for myself (only 13 lbs). I love turkey leftovers and soup made from the carcass, so if I want those, I have to cook the turkey. I will have cranberry sauce, onion pie, salad, a veggie ( either asparagus or broccoli), stuffing, and gravy. I haven’t decided on a dessert yet but it will be something small so I won’t pig out on it. Part of my turkey dinner will be frozen for my Christmas dinner, so that’s another bonus.
    Yesterday I got a special tattoo to commemorate my Camino trip. It has the Camino symbol and the word Ultreia (basically means go for it). It’s on my wrist so any time I think I can’t do something, I can look at my wrist and be motivated.

    1. Three Caminos, three tattoos. I did a 4th Camino in May and know what I want for this tattoo (a line drawing of the Cathedral silhouette) but I haven’t researched tattoo artists here in Cascais (my first three were all done by the same guy in LA, but that’s a little far to travel for a tattoo!). Your tattoo sounds perfect! I love that word.

  7. Jenny, we are old enough that we need no excuse to get our Curmudge on. Yes, tomorrow is the national “Thank God We Defeated the Indigenous People” day. Yes, it’s traditional for some of us to stuff birds then stuff our faces with tryptophan until we pass out watching Dallas or Detroit on the telly. Yes, Hallmark wants us to gather family around us so they can argue about who inherits what. Bah. Humbug!

    As for cooking, I’ve done that. I made dinners of pork, chicken, tuna, and beef. I have leftovers for days, though the seafood won’t survive the day today. Who knew fishcakes from canned tuna could be so tasty? I’ll be making those again for sure. But tomorrow? Rock Cornish Game Hen stuffed with brown & wild rice plus trimmings. It will be a fowl day. And I’ll love it. The dotter and some kinder will have gone to my FBMC’s house in North Carolina for days to share the tradition, or make new ones. I’m good with that.

    Happy retired Wednesday!

    1. Once you have a good fish cake recipe, you can use it for any kind of fish cake. I have made salmon cakes, smoked steelhead cakes, crab cakes and pacific cod cakes, using the same basic recipe. I usually grate garlic into some mayonnaise then thin it a bit with lemon juice and call it aoili sauce and serve it with them. A remoulade sauce is also really good.

        1. I blogged about my “seafood diet,” starting with that it’s not the “I see food, I eat it” diet. I downloaded the first three search results and used them strictly as a guide. For example, I have nine cans left of Wild Planet no salt added Albacore Wild Tuna. It says, “Pure, hand packed tuna,. No water, oil, or filler added. Please don’t drain.” Ergo, all the steps for draining my “tuna packed in water” and in one case rinsing the tuna and patting it dry are irrelevant. Given that I start with “no salt added” tuna, I also ignore anything that says “add x amount of salt.” I used two cans of tuna (I started with eleven), finely chopped onion, minced garlic, black pepper, habanero powder, panko bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, Worcestershire sauce, Duke’s mayonnaise, lemon juice, and one egg. I saved back some crumbs and cheese to press the patties into. I divided that into six patties, breaded them, and put them, along with two crabcakes onto greased pans in my toaster oven for 20 minutes at max heat. Your seasonings are whatever turns you on. For anybody but me, I recommend Old Bay. For me, way too much sodium.

          I ate half yesterday, and half today for brunch. I’ll be making them again sometime. Next time I might do the egg wash thing. Maybe I’ll grease a cupcake pan and make some really thick ones to serve in a bun. Or a biscuit. Or roll them into a taco shell. 🙂

      1. Your aoili sauce sounds good. I just filled a condiment cup with Heinz “no salt added” tomato ketchup for dipping.

        The dotter cooked cake balls cake pops to take to NoCar.

  8. I have never heard of onion pie before. How exactly is one made? Is it like a condiment to go with a roasted fowl?

    1. We are having 7 for Thanksgiving — 2 households, 3 cooks, and then adding a third household and cook for dessert. That means I’m only responsible for sweet potatoes, salad, peas, balsamic onions, and chocolate cake and pumpkin pie (we all tend to go overboard on desserts). Dh cooks the bird, the second household provides stuffing, white potatoes, cranberry sauce, and two dairy free desserts. I’m not sure what the third household is bringing but fudge is a good bet…
      Sadly neither of my kids will be here but I will have them for Christmas .

      1. Speaking of the bird the Washington post reran its 2002 op-Ed on why not to fry the Turkey. (Basically, the Turkey that is fried will be the chef…)
        Somewhat terrifying are the two updates at the end:
        Update on Nov. 21, 2012: A computer search this week for “fried turkey” yielded 27,100,000 citations.
Update on Nov. 22, 2022: A Google search this week for “fried turkey” yielded 177,000,000 citations.

        I predict a very rough time in emergency rooms.

        1. I’ve only had fried turkey once, years ago, and it was tasty. But the whole idea of all that hot oil is pretty scary.

    2. Here’s the recipe (with thanks to my former fil and mil)
      1 C rolled saltines
      1/4 C melted oleo (I used butter)
      2 C thinly sliced onions
      3/4 tsp salt
      3/4 C milk
      2 Tbs butter or oleo
      2 slightly beaten eggs
      Dash pepper
      mix cracker crumbs with melted butter and press into 8 inch pie plate
      cook onions in 2 tbs oleo/butter over VERY low heat until soft, not brown. Spread onions onto pie crust. Pour mixture (milk, eggs, pepper) over onions and sprinkle with paprika. Bake @ 350 for 30 minutes. Insert knife in center, if it comes out clean, it’s done.

      This comes from my former FIL who was a teacher at a school in Rome, NY and shared this recipe in one of those community cookbooks that are made for fundraising. He gave me a copy of it years ago.

        1. I believe so, they called it onion pie, primarily because they bake it in a pie dish. I usually make it in a square 8 inch pan. It tastes the same either way! 😉

          1. Well, thanks so much, Rouan! It sounds yummy as all get out. I’m going to try it one of these days.

  9. I’ve never been a holiday person. My daughter and I will order in as we don’t particularly want leftovers of all that high sodium food. I’m working on Tday but I don’t start until 6pm.

    My ‘work’ has mostly been writing for nanowrimo. Only 7 days left and I just reached the halfway point as far as word count is concerned.

    Repairman is coming to check out the washer today – it’s only 6 months old and suddenly turned very loud during the spin circle.

    We have to order a new firestick today as the old one went kaput.

    We got a dog run installed on the carport so we can sit out with the dog & enjoy all this pleasant weather.

    That’s about all the news here except I am rejoicing watching trump fumble around trying to get support. Fat chance after Jan 6th you traitor!

  10. I’m pre-exhausted from Thanksgiving.

    I really, really just don’t feel like seeing my extended family this year. Which is terrible. They’re all nice people and we’re not likely to have any drama or anything, we’re all more or less like minded on things like tolerance and politics, etc…this should not be hard or unpleasant in anyway.

    I just don’t feel like having to spend the energy to socialize.

    But I feel more like I need to rally and make the effort because we’ve lost a couple of years of big holidays to the pandemic already, and my kids are little, and I want them to get to experience the kind of big boisterous family holidays I loved as a kid.

    But if I had my way, I would have just wanted a smaller gathering that would require less metaphorical girding of my introverted loins.

    1. Try finding another quieter guest and retreating to a corner. This technique has worked well for me in the past.

      1. Can you plan quiet time before and after and maybe persuade some people to go on a walk with you between dinner and dessert to give you a break ? (Says another introvert)

  11. It’s just 3 of us for Thanksgiving — my mom, my sister, and me — so we’re actually keeping it super simple this year. Instead of a turkey (even the smallest ones are much too big, and we like chicken better anyway), my mom is going to make her (very easy and very delicious) roast chicken recipe. She’s already made the cranberry sauce and the gravy base, so she’ll make the stuffing today and then sweet potatoes and a vegetable tomorrow. I guess this isn’t really about me working (although let it be known that I offered more than once to help or make the side dishes or anything!) though I’ll probably end up doing loads of dishes between all the cooking since we have such a tiny kitchen. We’ve gotten very low-key with our holidays, and we’re all more than satisfied with that hahaha. Hope you all have joyful holidays with as little stress as possible! Eat some delicious food and hang in there!

  12. My hubby has pretty much cleaned the whole house, because he is the best. We still have a bit more to do, but nothing major. I am cooking tomorrow for a party of six, so again, not a huge commitment.

    It is odd, we have been together for about 6 years, but only starting merging families for holidays recently and with covid haven’t set into a tradition. We have to sort plans for every holiday, which is tedious. I look forward to when we know what we are doing without thinking about it.

  13. Happy US Thanksgiving to everyone! I am thankful for all of you. I am also thankful that tomorrow will be a quiet day since most of our clients are in The Excited States of America AND I won’t have to make a turkey – this is the best.

  14. My project for this week is raking up all the huge, leathery sycamore leaves that fall onto my yard from the neighbor’s trees. There are also pin oak leaves, but I will leave those as much as I can. They have oak mites on them, which are the eleventh plague of Moses. They burrow under your skin, and fester there, and itch for days. I wear gloves for leaf raking. I have no large deciduous trees in my yard, and I like it that way. No leaves, and a lot more sun. Plus, I don’t have to worry about the expense of having a behemoth taken out if it croaks. But there are still a lot of leaves on my yard. Sigh.

    I found out that we won’t eat till 5:00 at my DIL’s! I’d forgotten that they eat so late, since I haven’t been for several years. They watch the dog show and the parade and other diversions, then dine later. I always wondered why some people eat the turkey at noon, since it requires the cook to get up at before god-thirty to prepare the bird and get it in the oven. I did it once, and then let others have the “fun”, after that. I like Rouan’s recipe for onion pie. Thanks for that. I’m going to copy it. We are big onion-lovers in my family. Maybe I’ll take it next year to the feast.

    IKEA is offering buy-back credit for furniture from them, and I signed up to take a shoe cabinet back. It had no scratches and was in good shape. I now have a nice IKEA credit and more space in my extra room!

      1. I save every leaf i receive from my own trees and those of others, and leave them on the ground (long since dispensed with the dreaded lawn) for the winter and for soil building. I also nab every yardwaste bag of leaves that the occasional other family puts out as trash, and add those to my large compost heap. They are wonderful things that don’t deserve wasting if you don’t have to dispose of them for health reasons.

  15. I spent the last two days having Fun with Electricians, who were undertaking the major project of upgrading my (old, scary, and completely full) electrical box. This involved one day of them prepping the new box, with the power turned off inside the house for about six hours, and then yesterday the power company came and cut the power to the house entirely (while insisting they had to whack off some pine branches in the process). This was at 8:15 AM. Then my electrician and his assistant worked until 7:30 PM getting the new box up and going, and finding even more issues with the old one as they went. I got to go hide out at a friend’s house, not getting any work done although it was nice, came home around 4:30 after the electric company had reconnected the house, and waited as one at a time each circuit was reconnected. All that is left now is for my electrician to come back at some point, turn everything off again, as I walk through the house with a 2-way radio yelling “That’s the one!” as we try to get the new box labeled. SIGH. Still, it was really needed, and finally done.

    Thanksgiving is just me and the cats, who have no idea what day it is (although they will probably be giving thanks not to be locked in the bedroom all day because of workmen). I’m making a couple of Cornish hen–still debating on oven vs. air fryer, which I have never tried for this–plus potatoes, my favorite very simple cranberry sauce recipe, and probably homemade creamed spinach. At least I’ll have leftovers.

      1. I’ve finally looked up Cornish hens; Wikipedia says it’s just a particular breed, whereas I was thinking it was American for poussin (very small chicken, serves one or two). Your reply is making me think my original guess might be more or less right. Sounds a useful size.

        1. It’s really great for making festive meals for one or two, and I think the meat is more delicate.

          1. I find that generally one hen serves two people (or one person for two nights), and they almost always come packaged with two frozen birds together, hence cooking two. Besides, leftovers. I find them more flavorful than chicken. Besides, they’re cute.

          2. I use cornish game hens in my attempts to copy the lovely little birds we’ve tasted in restaurants in France. They’re cooked in broth in individual high-sided saucepans. The French birds are smaller than most cornish game hens.

        2. Cornish game hen (also Rock Cornish game hen) is the USDA-approved name for a particular variety of broiler chicken, produced from a cross between the Cornish and White Plymouth Rock chicken breeds, that is served young and immature, weighing no more than two pounds (900 g) ready to cook.

          Despite the name, the Cornish game hen is not a game bird. The name is doubly a misnomer because both males and females are served as Cornish game hens, meaning that many are not actually hens. Bred to develop a large breast over a short period of time, the fowl weighs roughly 2.5 pounds (1.1 kilograms) when slaughtered at four to six weeks of age and typically commands a higher price per pound than mature chicken. Adult Cornish game hens are not smaller than standard broiler chickens; the size of cooked Cornish game hens is due solely to the very young age at which they are slaughtered. The Cornish game hen is known for its tender meat which is easily able to absorb marinades and spices.


          Using a 4-slice Toaster Oven to Prepare a Cornish Game Hen

  16. I don’t cook things. I am no longer in rehearsals for any show and won’t be in any until next summer, probably, which makes me sad. Mostly I am just sitting around knitting. Has anyone ever done double knitting? I’m trying to make a maze scarf with that and hoo boy, that’s hard.

    I also need to get some stuff done that I haven’t done for months, like posting entries and book reviews. I wish I’d brought that stuff to work since I’m stuck being here all day and I’m just not in the mood (then again, who would be).

  17. ‘work’ for me today has been ‘check on delivery status of smoked turkeys’ (obviously I should have requested delivery *last* week and then we wouldn’t have to wonder if they will arrive on time … ) plus I spent about an hour measuring up the basement of my parents’ house in NC. It is unfinished and the idea is that we could turn it into living space for me and DH so that when we move over here, we have our own space for retreat from parents (and in my case to continue working). Now that I have all the dimensions, I can sit down with my graph paper and mechanical pencil and start fitting it out. 🙂

    DH meanwhile is helping Dad assemble a big media storage piece for the TV room. He likes having a project.

  18. Monday I decided to stay home and clean the bathrooms instead of what I had planned which was to make a return at the Derby Street Shops. If I had gone it would have been right around the time a horrific accident occurred. I don’t have intuition or a sixth sense but wanted get one job off my to-do list before tomorrow. Today my husband cleaned the carpet in the living room while I washed the floors. The grandchildren are supposed to come by tomorrow for dessert and then go to the town’s annual bonfire. They’re also planning to stay overnight. We’ll see how it goes. Do you think two pies, a cheesecake, cookies, cupcakes and brownies will be enough?

  19. My work this past week was scheduling appointments for the first two weeks of December and prepping for a short vacation in Long Beach, WA. My family has been coming to Long Beach for 65 years for family vacations, and we have travelled here for 45 years for Thanksgiving. We used to have drama, but my alcoholic (and belligerent) mom passed about 12 years ago, and Old Grumpy (my dad) passed two years ago. Now there’s lots of laughter and tall stories and wine and penny-ante poker. My older sister hosts in her HUGE (5000 sq ft for her and her husband) retirement home, and advised the rest of us that she “doesn’t want others in my kitchen.” Ok by me! I am allowed to peel potatoes, and do cleanup. We drove 4 hours to get here, and will drive home on Saturday. There will be 16 of us, from 10 to 78 years old. I love coming here, and by Saturday, I’ll love leaving!

  20. We’re going to an expat group’s Thanksgiving celebration tomorrow with a bunch of friends – should be loads of fun and it’s at a very good restaurant so the food will be excellent as well. Saturday, American friends here are doing their annual Thanksgiving, and I’m making roasted sweet potatoes from Smitten Kitchen (sliced thin like Hasselback potatoes and lined up and roasted in an oval casserole – delish!) and two cranberry sauces. Cranberries are tough to find here, and people scout the usual suspect markets until they find them, and only tell everyone else AFTER they’ve scored their own! God I love it here.

  21. I’m going out to lunch with my cousin. She’s feeling the lack of family since her son and daughter and the granddaughters all have other plans. I have my doubts about the whole thing because I’m all peopled out and wonder if the restaurant she’s chose will be busy. Still, I’m sure I’ll survive and it’ll give us a chance to talk face to face.

    Yesterday, the Board of Elections finished most of our election work. We spent about 4 hours doing the 2% audit which checks the accuracy of the tabulators. Thar means doing a hand count of 2% of the votes and then checking them against the machine totals. Four hours of picking up a ballot and then calling out the names voted while my partner did little ticks on paper. Our share was over 1000 ballots. In the end the machines were proved accurate and the humans were beat.

    Also fighting with our DMV website. I need to renew my drivers license and need the hours of the local photo center. The site seems to think I live around Harrisburg instead of Wilkes Barre. I hope it gets a clue soon.

    I did get outside to clean up the yard (natural light! fresh air!). And there wasn’t much to do since the wind has blown most of the leaves into the flower beds. It made a nice change from the audit.

    Have a happy Thursday, everyone.

Comments are closed.