Divide and Conquer – Crimson’s Creative Challenge #168

So funny that I happened to take a helicopter flying in the same angle as Crispina’s plane.  When I saw this challenge, I knew I had to play.  I decided to go ironic this time.  It sure feels like this is how things work sometimes…

This is not the time to criticize.

Not the time to say who is better at what, ok?

We each have our talents and lacks.

That’s neither here, nor there.

The important thing now is to work together.

We need to divide and conquer.

That IS working together!  We can cover more territory this way!

You go left, I’ll go right.  We meet in the middle on the other side.

Good?  Excellent. Go!

***

So? What did you find?

Whaddaya mean you don’t know what you were looking for?

For fuck’s sakes.

 

Just Roll With It

“I try not to make plans. Because, even the best laid plans etc. etc.”

Author: Brent Spiner

My plan for Sunday was rather easy.  Get up (always a good way to start the day), have a coffee, eat some breakfast, have a second coffee, then get my heinie outside for a good walk.  Upon my return will deserve a nice bowl of my veggie soup, take a shower, prepare supper, pick up my mother, enjoy our meal, drive her back, relax and go to bed.

As Sundays go, it started off nice and slow.  Slept in until 9 (never mind I was awake from 2 till 5).  Stoked the fire and made myself a cup of coffee.  Got onto the Interwebs to catch up on my readings.  Ate my bowl of Raisin Bran by 10, continued reading and next thing I knew it was past noon.  Well, dang.

 

If I was going to walk for any reasonable time, I’d have to eat sooner.  Continued reading and commenting and whatnot and then around 1:30-ish, had a small bowl of soup, then dressed up to go out.

Shovelled the back porch and along the back of the house up to the side gate (must have all exits free from snow, in case). Once that was done, grabbed my camera and was off.

After the cold we had on Saturday, Sunday felt positively balmy!  Off I went in the direction of  my willow, planning to keep walking until I reached the discovered secluded walkway.  I got to the first park and decided to take a pic of the play area as this week’s theme in my photo group is “a touch of blue”, and there is blue on the monkey bars.  I slid-shuffled across the skating rink, passing by a lady who was clearing the snow off the rink.  I took a few pictures then noticed a flash of something on my camera….

“No card in camera”.

What. The. Fuck?  What an amateur move! I completely forgot that I had taken a few pics of the sky from my living room window the evening before, uploaded them into my computer. Where I left the card. Sonova–

I grumble and take out my cell phone to snap a couple pics.  Would have been a grand day with the camera as the day was beautiful, for sure.

However, there was no way in hell I was lugging my camera bag without being able to take pictures!  Get a sore back for nothing? No.  So I turned around.  As I crossed the park, I thought, hey, all is not lost, I have lots of time. I shall go home, change and go back out for a run.  Once I turned on the next street, the wind in my face determined otherwise.  The day was bust. I just wasn’t feeling it, anymore anyway.

So I took my shower then slowly started preparing my supper. It was nice to not feel rushed.  Chopping and sautéeing and browning. It’s when I feel the most zen.  Just as I was putting my coat on to leave to pick up my mother, Iain’s CAA arrived to boost his car (dead battery).  I told him that, since he had to drive his car to get his battery full, it would be a wonderful idea if he could go and get his grandmother.  He agreed.

We had a lovely and simple Sunday dinner.  To be repeated!  I made my “Chicken à la Tuscan à la Dale” – one of those recipes that I actually wrote down.  (Years and years ago, Mick asked me to please stop winging it and write things down so that I could potentially repeat the good stuff.)  Of course, I never follow it, but the fact that I wrote it down means that I potentially remake it sorta-kinda the same way (ish).  It just so happens I was looking for this recipe to share with someone else – and ended up not doing so coz I never did get around to sending out Christmas cards in which I was supposed to include a recipe on a 3″ X 5″ index card; said index cards that I actually bought for the occasion and will be potentially used next year – so it was top of my mind when I asked Mom if she wanted dinner.

Plans are great and all but hey, when they are broken, doesn’t mean all is lost!

 

 

 

 

The Jazz Age

Our beautiful Sorceress of the Cloth has done it again. What a beautiful post!

Art Gowns

Dahlings! Rene Rosso here, welcome to the Jazz Age!

Defined by writers, performers and artists of the time such as F. Scott Fitzgerald, Josephine Baker and Thomas Hart Benton, it was more than a Gatsby, Paris or New York moment. So let’s get the full string of beads from our glorious Art Director, Rebecca Budd.

Thank you, Rene! We know the Flapper dress was the cat’s meow and the Charleston was the hoofer’s delight. Still, we should acknowledge that Vionnet and Chanel were the first designers to get rid of the corset, defining the silhouette of the era. Palazzo pants made their debut, and the cloche hat was the keenest.

Here to show you what gowns were all about are the Art Gowns Models! First out on the catwalk is Gigi. Gigi wears a hand painted silk georgette dress, with asymmetric tiers, accentuated by hand rolled satin rattail. 

AGM Marina…

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No Books Allowed (This Time) – dVerse Prosery

Monday was Prosery Monday for dVerse hosted by Ingrid.  Prosery is a 144-word challenge – max – in which we must use chosen lines from a bit of poetry. But get this… we must not write a poem!  This week, Ingrid chose from Wordsworth’s ‘Lines Written at a small distance from my House…‘ The lines we must use are as follows:

And bring no book, for this one day
We’ll give to idleness.

We must use the words in the exact order and cannot insert any others. We can, however change up the punctuation.  How can I resist? It seems this week’s challenges both (that I participated in) involve books in some way.  Or not.

The plan for today is simple: walk and lunch and just hang out, catching up as it’s been forever and a day since our last get-together.  I notice a suspicious object in Kathy’s bag when I pick her up.  Oh no, not this time! She will not disappear to some secluded spot with her romance novel.

“Kathy, I believe I said to bring yourself and bring no book!  For this one day, we’ll give to idleness!

She sheepishly removed the books from her bag.  “A girl can try. Reading is a form of idleness, no?”

“I think not.  Are we so dull, you need to escape us?”

“Of course not!  I always bring a book, just in case–”

“Yeah, yeah, I know. No reason for it today for today, we pfaff.”

“Sounds wickedly sinful.”

“‘Tis.  Shall we join the others?”

“Lead the way!”

 

 

Mom and Me Time – Friday Fictioneers

It’s Wednesday and I’m on the ball here to play Friday Fictioneers.  I had to go down memory lane again only this time, I imagined I was my younger child.  I am still, to this day, reminded that it’s been an awful long time since we had our adventures. (Did I mention said child is now 22?)  Never mind the store no longer exists but hey, I take it as a compliment that I am actually worthy of spending time with.  Wonder if Indigo would do?  Wonder if I would still get a “Yes, let’s go!”  Till then, a special thank you to Ted Strutz for supplying this week’s photo as well as an always thank you to Rochelle for hosting! If you’d like to play along, click on the frog below to add your 100-word story link.

©Ted Strutz

Book Frog Reading Stock Illustrations – 147 Book Frog Reading Stock  Illustrations, Vectors & Clipart - Dreamstime

Click to play

When Mom said:  “Let’s go to Chapters!” my heart leapt in joy.  It was the coolest place.  There were four floors of books!  I always looked forward to this adventure.  We’d start off on the main floor, me tugging Mom’s hand to pull her towards the stairs that lead down to the kids’ section.  So many books!

When I was old enough, she’d leave me to walk around alone, to choose the ones that I want.  “I don’t suppose you want us to go and have a hot chocolate when you’re done, right?”  Don’t know why she bothered to ask!

Tending the Home Fires

This past weekend was brutally cold and I remained cocooned in my house. No way in hell was I going out to run in -30ºC (with the wind chill) no way, no how.  For the first time this year, I decided to make a fire in slow burning wood stove.  Man, the wood I have is fairly useless.  Burns just like that (snaps fingers).  My cubby holds three large loads of this wood carrier doohickey.

I burned the whole lot Saturday.  Sunday was supposed to be warmer and I thought I’d go for a run and then fill up the cubby for the next cold snap.  ‘Parently the cold snap wasn’t done.   Whilst the kids were still snoring, I lugged in the three loads, snow-covered, and got that fire going again.  Thankfully snow doesn’t make it that wet.  It was a few degrees warmer than Saturday…

I decided to make a leek and potato soup, which got me to ruminating as I chopped.  I remembered how I followed Pol Martin’s recipe for Crème de poireaux (cream of leek), having graduated from the Sel et Poivre magazines to real cookbooks.  Sel & Poivre was fine and dandy but often included ingredients such as custard powder rather than include how to make the custard.  Funny thing is, in another recipe from a later issue, there was a recipe for crème pâtissière (pastry cream/custard)!  I used to take out both copies so I could combine them.  Especially after having searched high and low for the prepackaged powder crap (and finding it lacking).

Anyway, back to my soup.  I remembered cutting the veg rather small, and never puréeing it in the end.  It never mentioned to purée it and so I didn’t.  I no longer have the book – frankly, because this was the only recipe I ever tried in the otherwise dull and lacklustre book and I now know it off by heart and have probably modified it since, anyway – so I cannot confirm that that part of the recipe was omitted.   Not so much a crème then, was it?  However, I remember really liking it and receiving no complaints.  Funny then, that was the only time I didn’t whizz it up into a smooth and creamy texture, adding a swirl of cream and a sprinkling of freshly chopped parsley.  (I have also since figured out that the veg didn’t have to be cut so finely, especially since it was going under the immersion blender, or blender, that I no longer have.)  And then Sunday’s soup.  On a whim, I chopped everything fine and left it as is.  No cream necessary. I loved it.  And guess what?  Different audience, still no complaints!

As much as I could have remained in my cocoon for yet another day, I instead checked my fire and decided that it was warm enough(ish) to go out there, well-bundled up.  By 2:30 pm, I grabbed my camera, hopped into my car and determined where I would walk.  On a whim, I parked near the “country road” and started walking.  Realising I’d have to go a good ways before seeing anything, I trudged back to my car.  Off to the bird sanctuary, instead.  Note to self, these boots, while warm, are so heavy.  Time to go shopping.

I parked on the street behind another car, having noticed the parking lot was pretty full. Ugh. I long for the days when I worked shifts and could come here on a weekday.  It’s way too people-y on the weekends.

I took a good many photos, some of which ended up on the Facebooks and the Instagrams and I shall share them here, saving more for another post… 😉

 

Weekend Writing Prompt #244 – Cave

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in the comments. As always, a thank you to Sammi for hosting this party, weekly.

wk 244 cave

 

An underwater cave~

a cenote to the residents

of the Yucatán Peninsula

where fresh and salt water meet

Stalagmites and stalactites

a refuge for wildlife

We are just visitors

 

Cenote Dos Ojos, Riviera Maya

Underneath in the water

A Place to Live or to Visit, That is the Question – Friday Fictioneers

Would you look at that?  It’s Friday.  Thank gawd!  And I’m playing Friday Fictioneers today on a Friday.  Wasn’t gonna play at all but hey, only fools don’t change their minds, they say. I ain’t no fool.  Not to be confused with being foolish. I can be plenty foolish on occasion, I assure you.  This week our leader extraordinaire, Rochelle, has pilfered, sweetly requested, this photo from Bradley Harris. I don’t know about any of you “enjoying” the chill of this particular winter – no comment from youse guys in places like Texas, k?, but I could easily imagine my own self looking at this here view.  If you can as well and are inspired to write your own 100-word story, why don’t you and then plop the link to said story by clicking on my surfer frog below!

©Bradley Harris

Frog beach Images, Stock Photos & Vectors | Shutterstock

click me to play

Wouldn’t you just love to live here and be able to see this every day?

I don’t know, to be honest.

Seriously? Why not? As far as sun destinations go, Hawai’i is the most temperate. Less inclined to have hurricanes and whatnot.

Oh, I know.  But I think I’d get bored of it all. I actually like having four distinct seasons.

Even winter?

Yes, even winter.

Well I, for one, can easily see myself living here for the rest of my life.

Perfect! It will give me a place to come and visit!

You do that.

I most certainly will.

 

 

Tuesday Poetics – Food!

On Tuesday, Sarah from Sarah Writes Poems hosted  dVerse Tuesday Poetics – Food being the subject du jour.  Well now. Anyone who knows me, knows I do food. I love food. I love to make food to feed others. I love to share pictures of my food.  I am all over this prompt!

Funny how I knew exactly where I wanted to go and then, started writing and it went here. That muse just took over and ran roughshod over my idea!  She might have had the right idea, we’ll never know because she squashed my original words. Hope she used a quality masher, is all I can say.

My Food is Love

Chatting about food with my cousin one day

She says: What do you mean, you cook for others?

You should cook for your own pleasure

 

I retort:  What is the point to go all out

If it is just for me?

I show my love with my food

 

As did my father with his famous BBQ ribs,

His secret recipe held close to his chest

Or that one special meal made for my birthday, which I’ll never forget

 

And my mother, who can magically

Rummage in her freezer and find the ingredients

To feed a last-minute group of fifteen

 

I like to think I am a mix of both parents

Able to create something with nothing

Or to go all out with a six-course feast

 

My joy of creating fancy meals

Has caused others to fear receiving me for a meal

As if I would ever judge what they serve

 

The purpose of an invite is never to show off

Nor make others feel intimidated

It’s to gather my loved ones and share, even in the prep!

 

So, in my house, do not be surprised if on Tuesday

There is duck breast with raspberry sauce

Because Saturday it might be grilled cheese or frozen pizza

 

Creating food, simple or complex

All has the same goal, in the end

To show my love, sitting around my table

 

So, if I’ve gone through efforts, big or small

And no one comes to join me (kids? where are you?)

I guess my cousin was right, in the end

 

I best cook for my own pleasure, then
I suppose I could even convince myself it is a form of self-love

Yeah well… I’m not buying what I’m trying to sell

 

Weekend Writing Prompt #243 – Temerity

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in the comments.  Thank you for hosting Sammi.  I love when a thought comes to mind while watching mindless TV!

 

wk 243 temerity

 

Hindsight is 20/20 Vision

 

I watch Emily in Paris with a middle-aged woman’s wistfulness,

having never dared to go outside the comfort of my known box

 

To have the temerity to take a job in a country

where you don’t speak the language or know the culture

What an experience!

 

Naturally, we see things differently over time

 

Today, I say I wish I could have

Then, it never would have crossed my mind

 

Closest I’ve gotten to Paris is through Epcot Center!