briefly

I can’t remember exactly when or why Lancelot and I started doing the Lego Mini-figures together, but we have for as long as I can remember. We haven’t picked any up for awhile but last weekend at Target I grabbed two packages on impulse in the check out aisle. (it worked!) I don’t recall ever getting the exact same figure at the same time, but we did. And it had the ability to be either male or female, so we did one of each. Now we’ll really fly together forever.

Anyone who knows me at all knows that I am an iced coffee junkie, and I’ve spent a ridiculous amount of time trying to create the Perfect Iced Coffee. (caps for emphasis and utterly important, I assure you) I’ve done all kinds of variations, everything from mixing in Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup to using hot cocoa powder and doing cold brew coffee or whole milk – seriously, you name it. But I think I might have finally figured it out, thanks to doing the Noom thing.

I’ve realized that regular dairy milk has more calories that I’m comfortable allotting in my daily budget, so I’ve primarily switched to unsweetened coconut milk. I will occasionally use unsweetened almond milk in smoothies, but I can’t drink that stuff straight. Yuck.

Anyway, the coconut milk has the right texture, just a little coconut flavor, and way fewer calories. So I’ve been using the following procedure…

  • Brew a 12C pot of coffee; lately it’s been a light roast Toasted Coconut flavor from Target
  • All that to cool and then pour into a pitcher with 1/2C Splenda
  • Chill in the fridge until ready

I do this at least once a week, sometimes twice. When I’m ready to make my drink it goes something like this…

  • 1 1/2C unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 1/2C cold coffee
  • 2Tbsp half & half
  • Pour over ice in a large insulated cup

That’s it. Super simple, very yummy, and a whole 90 calories for a little more than 3C of coffee nirvana. Ain’t gonna get that at the coffee shop, especially for the price. It’s waaaaaaaay cheaper to make at home.

One last picture for today. This is a shawl that I made last year but haven’t worn yet. I really am trying to wear my pretty stuff because who the hell knows when the opportunity is going to legit present itself. Anyway, I can’t remember the pattern or if I was even using a pattern, but the colors are just so amazing. And since the weather here today is so utterly cold that the power utilities are doing mandatory, scheduled, rolling blackouts it seems appropriate to wear something bright. Fake it ’til you make it darling.

snow dog

Our dog, Pippy, is a Goldendoodle and she absolutely LOVES the snow. We ended up getting close to 3″ last night and she couldn’t have been happier. Lancelot shoveled a bit of the back porch off this morning to make it easier for Pippy to get down to the yard. Hilarity ensued.

I was shocked as hell last night when Garth went out on the deck. I thought for sure he’d turn right back around once his little paws hit the cold and wet. Nope. He made a bee-line for the railing and tried to jump down into the yard. Little punk.

This morning was my blood draw and it went well. And the kidney doc called and said the ultrasound from last week didn’t show anything they weren’t expecting. So I guess that’s good.

I’m hoping tonight will find me with some knitting time…

the day hell froze over

It’s deadly cold in the Midwest right now. We don’t have the absolute worst of it, but it’s bad here. When I left the house this morning it was -13F with a windchill of -26F. What that means is if you’re outside without sufficient protection from the cold and wind you have about 10 minutes before the frostbite starts. I was not at all interested in that.

Because it’s so cold I’m not exactly dressed like I normally would be. Today it’s all about the layers. I have on:

  • Tights
  • Leggings
  • Jeans
  • Tank top
  • Long sleeved t-shirt
  • Fleece hoodie

In the picture above I was also wearing:

  • My winter coat
  • A wool hat that I knit and felted
  • A knit headband that I used to protect the bottom of my face
  • A knit scarf wrapped to keep the hood of my jacket up (which was over the hood of my blue hoodie which was holding the wool hat in place)
  • Two pair of gloves, one inside the other

All of that, ALL OF THAT, and I was mostly warm on the walk in from the parking structure to my building.

All of the schools in the area are closed, except the universities. We don’t have classes starting here until noon, but that’s still kind of bullshit. There’s no trash pick up here today and the fucking postal service isn’t delivering mail.

The postal service isn’t delivering mail. Just let that sink in for a minute. The motherfucking postal service thinks it’s too cold for their people to be out. Their people are adults who know how to dress for this shit. We have students who are still wearing shorts right now.

ARGH.

At any rate, I got some homework done last night which was good. And at work yesterday I submitted a third proposal for a conference presentation at a local thing.

Overachiever much? Yes, yes I do.

winter in the midwest

Unless you are young enough to not have to drive, or wealthy enough to have someone else drive you around, winter in these parts often sucks. It can be dangerously cold, we get rain that freezes and gets topped by snow that is sometimes measured in feet, and in spite of it all there are still people who insist on driving like they’re competing in the Indy 500.

I am particularly NOT FOND of driving when it gets like this, and right now it is very much THIS. Partially this is because I once ran into the back end of a sheriff’s cruiser in bad winter weather (while on my way to meet my soon-to-be in-laws for the first time, on Christmas Eve) and partially because there’s no way for it to just be me on the roads. There is always some jerk who thinks that 4-wheel drive means something different than “all 4 of these wheels will slide at the exact same time when I hit a patch of black ice hidden under the snow while I’m driving 65mph on a surface street.” No, I am not exaggerating. This is the land of the pick-up truck and while not everyone who drives a truck is like that, many of them are.

If we get lucky, and this is “luck” as defined by me and most school aged children, we get a snow day. For those of you not living in a climate like this, a snow day is where the school districts, and sometimes the universities and every now and then a whole city, waves the white flag of surrender and lets all of us small children stay at home where it’s safe. This keeps the kids from standing outside waiting for buses and possibly slipping on ice, keeps the bus drivers from dealing with nasty roads, and makes it easier for the snow plows to do their jobs.

There’s typically junk food, movies, and non-stop pajama time involved. For me it usually includes some amount of time working on a craft project. It’s found time and it’s a beautiful thing.

Unless you’re sick.