Tuesday, December 28, 2010


The holiday season is behind me and the decorations, ribbons, recipes, clothes and extra pounds are resting peacefully in their respective boxes, files and thighs.  There are no more weekends left for getting the unsent cards out or justifying eating the last bit of chocolate left in the box to nom away.  However, I discovered a collection of photos on my phone from various moments in the season that I took probably thinking, 'these must be the moments I want to remember'. Looking back through the photos, the season looks fun and festive.  But actually, there are other moments that I can think of that are much more worthy that I did not capture in a picture.  Part of that may be my own fault. I don't normally take pictures of me procrastinating sending holiday cards,  and contemplating if I should pull out my credit card one last time from my wallet.  What about all dirty dishes piled in the sink waiting to be cleaned and muddy wet dog paws painting a path on the hardwood floors? These are seasonal mayhems and they return every year. Secretly I love them just as much as anything.

Thank goodness the holiday lunch I shared with a friend in a quaint downtown was captured but I don't have a picture of my 'fender kiss' when I  suddenly threw my car in reverse to secure a parking space that opened up after I had just passed it (I swear there wasn't a car behind me).  But, it all ended well.  My friend and I met a wonderful craftsman potter, who was so kind and mellow.   The incident could have been an outing killer, but it turned into a meeting of goodwill and cheer and feeling really good about mankind.  It was a good moment.

The Christmas tree. I do have a picture of this brilliant beauty, but I should have used the outdoor setting on the camera when I committed it for posterity.  I'm always in search of the latest technology when it comes to lighting the tree. This year,  I found the perfect lights... they were just a wee tad smaller than a baseball. I could not wait to see them on my fresh Noble Fir.  See?  The tree so blinding you needed a pair of anti-glare sunglasses to look at it.  Who needs to turn on the heater when about 200 light bulbs are on your tree generating enough heat and light to warrant wearing tank tops in the house in the chill of winter. No amount of water was keeping that tree fresh for the next 6 weeks.  I secretly wrapped a fire extinguisher in holiday wrap behind the tree just in case the tree spontaneously combusted.  So, in addition to the light bulbs, I also put on about 500 little cool white lights and installed two switches for bi-modal lighting. One mode for cool lighting and the other for full-on total incandescent ( not saving energy mode) lighting. Completely ridiculous.  Someone should have told me to stop.  We were roasting marshmallows over the tree.

 However, what I remember most, and I don't have any pictures of,  is making  candied citrus peels dipped in dark chocolate and citrus Turkish Delights. Neither of these are hard, but both are time consuming if you want then to turn out right.  My family ate the citrus peels like french fries ... one after another without any thought of what they were putting in their mouths.  I offered them ketchup and mayonnaise to help wash them down.  Watching them disappear was frightful and I don't have any pictures of these little delicate shoestring delights.  But I  must have had it in my mind about taking pictures because I have one in the very beginning of the process, in full peel. However, any more  ideas of capturing this process was trumped from the hypnotic spell I was under while watching my peels blanch over and over and over again.

I love the holidays but I love to see them go too.  Bye Bye.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

When Cookies Save the day!

...and this is why I keep homemade sweets and treats in my home.

I was writing a letter to a company that I found very interesting and felt its goals and purpose matched my interests perfectly.  With excitement and  all the wonder of the possibilities that could come out of this possible union, I sent a letter describing myself and telling them how wonderfully prolific and profound I am.  I went on to describe how adept I am at so many skills and software programs.  When I was finished, I was just amazed at how truly great I was.  Wow!   Feeling good about myself and all that I had accomplished, I clicked the  'send' and off it goes.  Just for fun, I opened the letter again from my 'sent' box to read about myself all over again.  This was a good letter and it described me to a tee, it was perfect.   "Wholly Crap!" "What the... it can't be."  I put my glasses on and there it was,  sitting on the page like some bird had just pooed on it, right after I had just described my innate ability to pay attention to details...there it was, staring back at me as though I had typed in bold, italicized, 24 pt font.   How could it be?  I misspelled the word electronic and with a slip of the finger spelled electroonic.  Are you even kidding me here? Why didn't the word program pick up on that?  Oh man, oh man, oh man.  Here I am in the heart of Silicon Valley and I can't even spell the very word that made this valley so famous.  I called my sister and she laughed hysterically.  She sent me voicemails all day asking for tech support on her electroonic devices.  It went on and on and on.  

I was not distraught. I felt rather pleased that I felt confident enough with my spelling ability that I did not use spell checker.  But, all the same, this is why spell checker exists. So, to ease the anxiety and reflect on my unavoidable awkward life,  I went into my freezer and took out two of my cranberry orange biscotti's and brewed a pot of earl grey tea and just let the phone ring as my sister left sinister messages asking for electroonic support.    I am still waiting to hear from them by the way...still waiting...sigh...