Saturday, May 1, 2010

A Weekend of Hope and Hominy

I’ve been very grouchy lately.  It’s been a damage-control kind of week, trying to minimize the destruction of my bad mood.  There have been some recurring problems at work and back pain, but I also think someone switched my multivitamins for misanthropy pills.  I will be the first person to admit that I am moody, but it’s unusual for a bad mood to linger this long unless hormones are involved.  My calendar says they’re not.  So misanthropy pills must be the cause!

But today is Saturday, which means a respite from work and its problems.  I’m actually feeling pretty good today.  Maybe because I had waffles for breakfast!

Hey Good-Looking!

These waffles are straight out of the freezer (Eggo Nutrigrain), topped with either a quick blueberry sauce or a yogurt-peanut butter sauce and bananas.  Waffles appeared on my breakfast table because I don’t have enough milk for cereal, but I think it was a serendipitous occasion.  This was a good breakfast.

I’m a little sad that my dinner party plans for tomorrow fell through.  I had invited a friend over for dinner, and I was going to make us this soup and a big salad with fresh croutons, all crispy-hot from the oven.  I was also thinking about making some Walnut Wafers for dessert.  There would have been wine too, and laughter, and maybe some cheese.  But now I’m on my own again, and I’m feeling a vague sense of drifting through life with no real human connections to this place where I live.  In graduate school, my non-science friends became as essential to me as breathing.  With just one non-science friend here in Texas, I’m feeling a little lonely.

Dinner party or not, I have declared this weekend Family Weekend.  I need to call my mother to assure her that I’m not lying in a ditch somewhere.  She’s really old-fashioned and will never, ever pick up a phone to call me.  I think in the ten years that I’ve lived outside of her house, she’s called me exactly once.  This may sound a little mean, but if she’s concerned about me AND she won’t call, I think she’s refusing to solve her own problems.  I’m going to call her today or tomorrow.  Other Family Weekend events will include card-shopping for Mother’s Day and gift-buying for a brother’s upcoming birthday.  I love buying cards and presents, so I’m looking forward to my plans.

I find that cleaning and organizing are effective mood-boosters, so I’m also looking forward to mundane chores such as doing the laundry, filing financial paperwork, and cleaning the bathrooms.  I love how tangible the results are from domestic tasks.  In between rounds of my domestic goddess act, I’ll be grocery-shopping and cooking.  I want to make a tomato soup similar to this one but featuring hominy, which I forgot how much I love until last weekend.  There was a can of hominy lurking in my pantry, and I finally popped it open to make The Ultimate Veggie Bowl of Red.  The spicing in this chili is really nice—it’s hot but not set-your-head-on-fire hot and the combination of herbs and spices creates a wonderful depth and layering of flavor.  I ate the entire batch of chili by myself and wasn’t the least bit tired of it by the end, which is high praise.  This weekend, instead of chili, it will be an Italian bowl of red with chewy nuggets of hominy and lots of vegetables.  I can’t wait.

Happy May Day, dear readers!  I hope your weekend is a great one.

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