Weekend Writing Prompt #283 – Dunk

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.

I took a short trip down memory lane with this one… Okay, that’s not entirely true as I had this very lunch just last week…

wk 283 dunk

Comfort

Is an Aylmer’s cream of tomato soup with a side of sandwich.

The choice of sandwich is important.  Plain will work in a pinch, but toasted is always best.

Some will swear by baloney (bologna) – plain or fried, thin or thick.  Salami, ham, pressed chicken work

!  But oh! A grilled cheese? That’s the best!

The magic happens when you dunk your sammie into the soup and savour!

Add The Flintstones and you are ten years old again.

The Flintstones Coming to MeTV in Fall 2019; Lifetime Tackles The College  Admissions Scandal - SitcomsOnline.com News Blog

 

 

It’s Terrasse Time! – Friday Fictioneers

Good Wednesday, my peeps!  It’s Friday Fictioneers Day and I could not resist this photo.  It kinda called me to do a certain sequel to my story from a couple weeks ago.  As always, a thank you to Rochelle, our fearless leader, who, while still frolicking in the ocean, still manages to host our weekly shindig.  Should you want to join in and write a story inspired by Roger Bultot’s photo, then click on the frogs below to add your link!

frog, chair, cozy, for two, drink, wine, soaked, cute, sweet, funny,  relaxation | Pikist

Click to play

 

Since you didn’t like my choice last time we got together, you pick.

It was disgusting.  And great, it’s terrasse weather.  I know just the place.

Terrace weather, you mean.

Terrasse, terrace. The important thing is we sit outside.

In the shade?

Yes, in the shade.

Okay.  Meet you there?

7:00 pm.

***

This is your choice?

Yes, this is my choice.

You thought my tables looked like toilets, what the hell is this?

Art.

Art? It’s graffiti!

Stop. The food and drinks are worth it.

They better be.

At least we won’t feel crowded.

Why does that bring me no comfort?

 

A Tuesday Night Supper

I haven’t done a food post in eons. And now I’m thinking I have to reinstitute Dalectables.  I’m thinking about it. Oh, and don’t worry, this won’t be one of those super cheery blah-de-blah; step-by-step with twelve photos of the same thing.  No, no, this is not one of those!

Just like blog post ideas, so go ideas on what to make for supper (for the umpteenth day in a row).  And by go, I mean by the wayside.  Sometimes, just like the wannabe post where I write one line with the intention of coming back to it later, I buy an ingredient for a specific recipe only to find its less-than-desirable self in the back of the fridge.  Sometimes, like the line, I manage to use said ingredient in another way, thereby not wasting it.  And sometimes, I actually use it in the way I wanted to.  Or almost.

I had a head of cauliflower in the crisper drawer, slowly de-crisping and becoming more, let’s say frumpy. (And I don’t know about you but with the price of groceries, this is NOT the way to go.)  I have been wanting to do a recipe since forever and tonight was the night!  Of course, I could not find that recipe for the life of me… so, as I usually do, I went to the trusty Google and entered the ingredient I wanted to use.  BOOM! Oh wait, that’s not it. Ooohhh… but I have everything I need for THAT recipe.  It’s a go!  And, while it might be a supposed main course, I knew that my kids would not buy it so it was going to be a perfect side for the marinated chicken thighs – that I actually remembered to do this morning before work.  I am on FIAH!  Okay, let’s not get excited.

And, take that Jamie Oliver… I, too can have a fabulous meal done in thirty minutes!

Roasted Cauliflower Steaks With Romesco Sauce and a side of Marinated Chicken Thighs.   So, thank you, Martha Stewart, your recipe was delightful.  And thank you, Dale Rogerson, your marinade turned out delish (not that I can ever make it again coz it was some of this, some of that and…)

Ta dah!

WWP #262 – Zest

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.  I haven’t played in ages and eons but hey… here I am and thank you, Sammi!

wk 262 zest

 

Limoncello Instead

 

I’ve a zest for life, this is true

Life’s thrown me a lemon or two

 

Woe is me

I’ll never be

 

I’ll not turn sour and bitter

With vodka and zest

A time to rest

I will have a delicious elixir

 

Easy-Breezy Sundays

If every summer day was like today, I would be in heaven.  25℃ (feels like 27℃) or, for you Yanks, 77℉ (feels like 81℉).  The sun is shining but are were puffy white clouds passing by, breaking up the blue and momentarily giving breaks from the direct rays. The breeze is warm and steady at 30km/h with gusts up to 39km/h (19mph, and 24mph).  The tree leaves rustle, the birds sing and traffic sounds so far away it is a barley discernable hum.

It is now late afternoon and all the neighbours, myself included, have mowed our lawns; no more sounds of circular saws or hammering or other chores needed, and now, we can sit by our pools or on our patios or right in the grass, having earned our time of respite, and just be one with the world. 

Of course there is supper to be made but I’ve actually planned ahead, sorta, kinda maybe.  The salmon “should” be thawed by the time I’m ready, right?  Plus, supper won’t be at least until 7:00 pm today…  In the meantime, I am catching up on my reading – I am participating in Sammi’s Lord of the Rings re-read.  It’s fun. We read a half-chapter per week, then “discuss” on her blog in her Tolkien Tuesday.  I was behind by four weeks!  Tomorrow we shall be discussing the first half of Chapter 11: A Knife in the Dark.  It’s fun to get the opinions and thoughts of others (we are 4-6 regulars who participate) on each segment.

I was actually serenaded by a robin as I enjoyed the afternoon.  How can one not appreciate that?

The BBQ is cooking my salmon and my rice is in its last resting five minutes.  The asparagus are just about to get some grilling and I may actually be joined by the other residents of this household for supper, like at the same time as me.  Whoa. 

We so enjoyed the different flavours brought out by the barbecue, it had me wondering why I barely used it last year.  I shall definitely rectify the situation this year. 

I’m also wondering why the hell we did not eat outside, especially since at the time we ate (8:00), the non-existent roof on my gazebo (ripped last year and needs to be replaced) wouldn’t have mattered as the sun had moved away from the house.  Much as I love to eat outside, I do not love to eat in full sun and will never understand those who do.  To each his and her own, I say.

*Special note:  I was so enjoying the day yesterday that I finished posting today, Monday 😉 

 

Soul Swell, Frolicking Fée, Marvellous Moon

I have so many plans.  Too bad I’m a lazy bum!  Was gonna write my WWP Saturday, then yesterday… but then the whole Blood Flower Moon Eclipse thing…  But first, let’s go back…

Thursday evening was girls’ night. A way long overdue girls’ night.  Okay, even if we had had one a couple months ago, I’d still feel it was overdue!  Our usual trio of Julie, Giselle and me was upped by one with Linda.  A very happy case of perfect timing.  As the weather was particularly clement (a good 27℃ (81℉)) at suppertime, we sat outside of La Louisiane, a Montreal Cajun-Creole eatery that we have frequented a number of times and which I suggested for our evening.  Ah man.  It wouldn’t matter where we eat because it’s all about the company but good food just adds to it, right?  Plus, Linda had never been so we got to introduce her to the joint.  Linda and I arrived first and ordered drinks while we waited for the other two… which didn’t take long.

While we decided what to eat, we decided on a few appetizers:  hushpuppies, sweet potato fries and grilled corn bread.  Yeah.. um… Good stuff to absorb alcohol, right?

We then went for another round, this time with Cajun chicken wings, Gumbo – so more cornbread, beet and arugula salad, coconut beer battered shrimp.   Delicious. All of it.

Giselle was ready for sweets so she indulged in a chocolate pecan torte (which we all took a bit of).  However, we (Linda) felt we were still not done with the savoury and we ended up ordering some fried clams and crab cakes.

Lots of love, laughter and feel-good vibes were felt and must be repeated soon… Right, ladies?

Saturday morning I was supposed to run but the pool was in the shade and I thought that would be the best time to vacuum all the crap without me being cooked in the sun in the process.  And, after I had done half, my sister Tracy called saying she was going to the barn for just an hour or so to see Fée (pronounced Fay) and would I like to join.  She couldn’t ride her as she’d (Fée) had her vaccine so that’s why the visit would be shorter than usual.  Um. Yeah!  Plus, I promised Gigi from Rethinking Life that I would finally show her pictures of Fée.

Lemme tell you, I was rather glad it was to be a short visit.  It was hotter than Hades out there – 32℃ (90℉) to be standing around in the blazing sun.

Tracy went to get Fée to bring her into the little ring.  “She’s going to roll around in it.”  “Really?”  “Yep.”  And she did.  She ran around, going back and forth and then lay down and rolled.  Up again and then rolled again.  It was quite the sight to see!

As mentioned in the intro, this post was late because I was going to attempt to capture the Full Blood Flower Moon and Eclipse.  And failed miserably.  I even went up onto my roof but my tripod is tired and my butt got wet and then the clouds came just when I capture a sliver of it… and not all that well, either.

I did have fun with my phone before, begging the clouds to please be nice and disperse, which they did, before completely taking over.

And the best of the worst with my camera.

Oh well, maybe next time!  If you really want to see some beautiful shots, check out Tim’s blog at Off Center & Not Even.  Outstanding, I say!

 

 

 

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!

 

 

 

 

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… 😉

 

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

 

Subdued Celebration

On Monday, Lisa hosted a dVerse Haibun with the theme “Celebration”.  Like most people, Christmas and New Year’s were not the celebrations we were hoping to have.  for this prompt, I kept it to Christmas mainly because New Year’s was a whole lotta nuthin’.

The plans were set in motion. This year, we were going to retake Christmas, government be damned. It had been cancelled last year, thanks to measures to combat COVID. Not this year!  Christmas Eve at Tracy’s (all dressed up) with game gift exchanges, a potluck feast and scratching of Chinese gambling cards. This would be followed, the next morning, with brunch at my house where we all squeeze in (still pyjama-clad) my kitchen and living room while Iain makes the omelets and the rest of the breakfast goodies.  Don’t forget the “mimosies” as Mick used to call mimosas. After naps, we make our way to Lisa’s (casual) for our turkey dinner that ends with a Texas Hold ‘Em poker game.  We were so excited.

Then December 23rd happened.  COVID hit and we had to cancel.  A scramble to buy a turkey, hope it thawed out in time. Iain made us three our brunch and, later that day, while the delicious scent of Christmas permeated the house, Iain went to get my mom and we shared a perfectly roasted (if I say so myself) thirteen-pound bird with mashed potatoes, canned peas (don’t ask, traditions are what they are) and homemade gravy. I even found jars of my cranberry sauce and pickled beets, preserved previously. All was not lost.

Parties are cancelled

Celebrations now subdued

Love remains present