Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Monday, July 13, 2009
Our weekend; The Story. I have a peridontist appointment about every three months, in a town about 2 + hours from where we live. So we have turned it into a weekend getaway, and a visit with my mother who lives in a nearby town to the town where my peridontist is located.
Had my peridontist appt Friday and the report was good - some small improvement actually. Not much improvement, but far better than deterioration. Then we went to my mother's home, spent the weekend. and then came home to our animals. Our cat and dog remain at home, and so our time away is limited to a safe duration for the cat and dog to fend for themselves. Now that my cat bite is healing and the cat is healing, life is returning to normal. (A couple weeks earlier the cat was bitten by an animal, and in not knowing she was bitten, I picked her up, more rather tugged her out of her hiding place and she bit me…not at all her usual behavior, she is a very loving cat. We didn’t see her wound at the time, but knew something was wrong with her. Arthur spotted her wound, and we took her to the vet, who gave her a vaccine, and told me was more concerned that I get myself to hospital to treat the cat bite. I did, was vaccinated and given antibiotics, the incident reported to County Health, the cat quarantined at our home for 10 days and we are both mending without incident, the primary concern being exposure to rabies). When we returned home, our dog Jake resumed eating again. He misses us when we are gone and gets sad - depressed. Dogs have feelings. Oh, and our cat too, she has feelings, misses us and glad when we return home.
After my peridontist visit on Friday afternoon we drove to my mother’s home, picked her up and went out to eat. We live in a rural town, and there aren’t a lot of restaurants or places to eat, so we enjoy the opportunity of eating out at different restaurants on the days of my peridontist appointments. It’s an eating out together date we look relish. Choosing a restaurant in the town where my mother lives proved not to be as obvious as it might seem. We kind of scoured what we knew to be restaurants in her neighborhood, opted to go further away, settled on Black Angus, since I was hankering for a nice steak lunch. We got there and it no longer has lunch, open for dinner only. Must be the economy. The hour was growing late into the afternoon, I was hungry now, and we had not eaten breakfast that day, or at all, so we wound up at (oh yuck!) Old Country Buffet. Arthur likes the many choices of buffet restaurants, and sometimes so do I, but Old Country Buffet is not one of my favorites. We both really enjoy the buffet variety of primarily healthy choices at Sweet Tomatoes restaurant, but there were none the town where my Mom lives.
Saturday Arthur spent the day home, defrosted Mom’s freezer for her because it had become so full of ice that the ice on all the shelves were touching each other, no room for food. He took care of some other taskings for her, then spent the rest of the day fooling around with installing stuff in his old fashioned computer. Not the laptop kind, the big bulky kind. Some guy he knows had given him some Linus software to download or told him about it. Anyway, it was a dead computer (not working) and when Arthur finished the download it sprung back to life, installed Windows XP and is sort of functional again. He was delighted. Still needs an audio driver and something else that would permit it to link to internet. He was just intrigued that it started working again...kind of like a guy tinkering in his garage with his power tools, only Arthur likes to tinker with puter.
Saturday I took Mom to Farmers Market in Proctor area of Tacoma. That is a district that more resembles Portland or some Seattle districts; organic, green living, conscientious choices - that sort of thing, and an amazingly cool, fun grocery store with very upscale item choices. For a mere $309.00 you can purchase a wheel of gourmet cheese! An experience in itself. (I’m being a bit snarky – it would be very unlikely we would ever spend that kind of money on cheese.) We visited a new consignment shop in her immediate neighborhood – delightful items, colorful, fun, upbeat, cheerful. I liked it. But I didn’t buy anything, because in truth, neither of us need another thing!
And more for the hunt of treasure than because either of us need anything more in our homes, we went to a few garage sales. What was being offered wasn’t the kind of garage sales we were looking for - more like junk sales. We had fun anyway because we toured many of the University Place neighborhoods, the million + $$ homes with breathtaking views of the Narrows water, Narrows Bridge, the outlying island. And alongside the million + $$ homes, are more modest ranch style homes. You can be on a ‘house of dreams’ street and turn to go down the the next street which could well be a quiet and modest street of different ranch style homes. University Place neighborhoods are in interesting mix of income levels. After our tour of neighborhoods, I took her to visit Charlie at cemetary where his ashes are placed. It is a beautiful, peaceful cemetary, a place of quiet serenity amidst the hubbub of getting from here to there. Nice place to quietly reflect on life. I know, it may sound like a strange juxtaposition to reflect on life when at a cemetary where the dead are buried…..but that is how it works for me.
We went back to Proctor district that evening to have dinner at a niche Mexican restaurant (not a restaurant chain) because Mom said she heard good things about the food and atmosphere there. Lively atmosphere with mix of old and young people dining. I had a Taste Assault dish called Chicken Mole, although it would be better named Chicken in Mole (prounounced molay) Sauce, because the sauce was Outrageous - 6 ingredients, and I can remember plums, almonds, mole (an unsweetened chocolate), and some other ingredients. It wakes up your taste buds like wowza! Not hot or even spicy, flavorful would be the word I would use to describe it. Flavorful with each bite. Arthur took a menu and will experiment at home with making the mole sauce because I liked it so well.
Sunday we took Mom to her church (St Andrews Episcopal Church). A bit of history here; my mom lost half her sightedness recently and is vision impaired now. Mom had been saying she felt she needed something inspirational amidst all the doctor appointments and bad news. Along the way, I decided to call the Priest at St Andrews to talk to him about Mom. When she was a child, she attended Episcopal church in Spokane. I explained to him her childhood church exposure, and her current medical condition with being sight impaired, being told by her doctors not to drive anymore. He agreed to visit Mom immediately and arranged for someone to pick her up and take her to church on Sundays.
She has been to St Andrews now, a few times, and wanted us to visit her church. We wanted to visit it also, as I enjoyed the upbeat conversation with the Priest - he was energetically young, even though he isn't young. That Sunday they had special guests, a singing group who livened up the entire worship service with renditions of the hymns done to foot tapping music. Guitars, tambourines, horns, and one of the gals playing guitar was barefoot! Felt like we were at a campfire gathering! Geesh! But the worship service having a combination of traditional liturgy, the laying on of hands for healing, the Eucharist, and the lively music with a welcome invitation to all does reflect ‘The Emerging Church’.
We loved the church, it had accommodations our little church building isn’t equipped to have, and if we lived in that area, we would likely attend that church. Afterwards we ate at a restaurant in her immediate neighborhood that she is fond of - an old fashioned restaurant left over from approximately the 1950’s era. So lots of eating this weekend, way too many calories, and Mom had a nice weekend. So did we.
Oh and at the Farmer's Market I bought some snow peas that were priced below what is usually charged for snow peas, so I bought enough to freeze. Bought a couple of tomato plants already bearing tomatoes, and a basil plant. I didn’t plant a vegetable garden this year, and haven’t spent much time outside with the herb and flower gardens, so keeping it light this year. Weather hasn’t been too cooperative where we live – cold, rainy, then unseasonably blistering hot, then cold again. At the market, I found a growing salad bowl planter that I wanted and Mom bought it for me for my birthday gift. The planter has growing lettuce, tomatoes, cilantro plants - salad ingredients, and that is the extent of my vegetable garden this year. Except all the herbs I have been growing for a few years now.
And I was delighted to learn about a lovely tasty sauce called Chimichurri? Oh, I tasted some at the market, and just had to buy one - lime Chimichurri. Great to use as braising sauce for grilled vegetables, on meats, or just straight on healthy chips or fresh veggies. Taste delight!
It was a rather sweet weekend. Last year around this time, we had visited Mom and she and I went to Lavender Festival on Vashon Island, ferry ride over and back, a beautiful, clear, sunny day, making the waters deep blue and picturesque. There was a Farmer’s Market there too, and we visited that Farmer’s Market