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October 2012
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December 2012

Friday Five: The First

In an effort to have something to post every day in December for Holidailies (are you sick of hearing about it, yet? ), I am reviving the Friday Five list. There used to be a website for the Friday Five where questions were posted every week and I answered them first on my on-line journal and later my blog, but I haven't seen that website for years, and couldn't find it in a search. There were several other Friday Five websites, but none of them were what I wanted. So, basically, I'm stealing, erm, borrowing the Friday Five list idea from Caroline Richmond of Adventures in Space and just posting five random things every week. So, without further ado, here's this week's list:

  1. So, we're finally getting rain, which is both fantastic and annoying. It's fantastic because we get to water our lawn and plants for free, but annoying because standing in the rain waiting for the bus is a pain, and once we get some sunshine, we'll have to mow the lawn.
  2. I'm contemplating starting a new tumblr-style blog called "What I Smelled at the Bus Stop Today" because the past few days have provided me with some unique and interesting bus stop smells. There was the stinky, mufflerless old beater spewing a black fog on one day, the the guy smoking a particularly stinky cigar the next day, and the skunky smell we enjoyed yesterday (I'm sure that one of the little critters got hit on the freeway behind us, but I kept looking around making sure there wasn't an actual living, breathing, spraying skunk wandering around nearby!), and the food smells coming from Denny's everyday. I can't wait to see what next week holds!
  3. Actually I can't wait till they get our new bus stop finished so we can stop standing there in front of the Denny's smelling all the food smells and being stared at by the diners. It's only supposed to take a few weeks (they said), but of course it's been raining this past week, so they probably weren't able to get much if anything done, so now, who knows? We really didn't even need a new bus stop in the first place - the one we had was fine and the new one being across the street from the old one is just going to be a pain in the butt. Srsly.
  4. I've been contemplating changing my hair colour from light auburn to a darker, rich true auburn. The darker colour just seems like a good idea for fall/winter, but I really quite like the colour I've been using this year, and I'm afraid if I change it, I'll never be able to go back to what I have. le sigh. It's so hard being a girl!
  5. And, finally, here's my favourite photo of the week, a shot of the sunset before all this rain. Cheers!


Clean Eating: Roasted Cauliflower

In preparation for the upcoming Holidailies, I have decided to practice updating my blog more than once or twice a week. I think this is my third update, and I already have tomorrow's Friday Five list started. Holidailies should be a cinch this year, right?!?

Anyway, I recently decided to get my lazy ass back in the kitchen and try cooking some vegetables other than steamed broccoli and zucchini. I have tons of recipie books/magazines and pins on Pinterest, but, veggies are hard to cook ... well, really they're harder to prepare than to cook, but still. It's hard. (See "lazy ass" in the first sentence of this paragraph.) However, I kept seeing recipes on Pinterest for clean eating roasted cauliflower, and the photos looked SO good, I decided to give it a shot. And, yes the prep work was horrific (Have you ever tried chopping up cauliflower? Pain. In. The. Butt!), but in the end, the cauliflower turned out delicious and well worth the effort.

 It was quite simple (once the chopping was done!): I tossed the cauliflower in olive oil, salt and pepper, and roasted it at 400 for about 30 to 45 minutes. I didn't measure anything and didn't really time it; I just kept checking it as I was cooking other stuff, stirred it periodically, and pulled it out when I thought it looked perfect. I will definitely be making this again - despite the heinous prep work! - as well as trying other ways to use cauliflower and other veggies to add some variety to my dinners!


Teaser Tuesday: Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

•Grab your current read
•Open to a random page
•Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
•BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
•Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week I'm reading another zombie novel - with a twist! - Warm Bodies by Issac Marion. I first heard about this book on Read Now Sleep Later  during a bit of a controvery due to the author being annoyed that his book was being promoted as YA. Then, people took offense to him putting YA down as a catagory not good enough for his book or whatever. At first that kinda turned me off, to be honest, and I nearly didn't even read the book. However, when I read the book's description (in a nutshell, a zombie named "R" can feel emotions and experience memories from the victims he's eaten, and through the memories of a young man becomes enamoured with a "Living" girl.), I was curious enough to disregard the controversy and give it a shot.

Now that I've read the book, I must say I kinda get where Marion's coming from: Warm Bodies is not what I, personally, would consider a YA book. Can I see an older teenager, say 17 to 19, reading this book? Of course. But I can't see a high school library stocking it? No. And I even find it a reach to put it in the YA section of a bookstore. But that's just me.

All that said, I really enjoyed this book, and would highly recommend it to anyone else who enjoyed zombie novels. And, without further ado, here are my teasers from page 31 on my nook. Sorry, it's a bit gross, but this is a zombie novel told in the POV of a zombie.

We sit against the tiles of the bathroom wall with our legs sprawled out in front of us, passing the brain back and forth, taking small, leisurely bites and enjoying the brief flashes of human experience.

Update and Holidailies Prep

I don't know about you, but I had a fabulous Thanksgiving holiday weekend, thankyouverymuch! Here are the highlights in bullet form:

  • Thanksgiving Day mom and I lounged around the house, had chicken soup for lunch and a Subway Club sandwich for dinner, and took a nice long walk in the late afternoon. The weather was gorgeous - sunny and warm! - and I got a couple great shots of the brightly coloured leaves on the trees against the deep blue sky.
  • Friday morning we drove out to visit my grandfather at the Yellow Rose Inn. He was still in bed, but was wide awake, happy to see us, and we had a lovely visit. Afterwards, mom and I did our grocery shopping, which was awesome because there was NO ONE at the grocery store! Then lounged around the rest of the day.
  • Saturday my aunt and uncle stopped by first thing in the morning. They'd been in Germany the past several weeks visiting their son (my Famous Cousin Augie) and future daughter-in-law, so we were plant-sitting. Thankfully all their plants survived! After breakfast mom and I went out and mowed our lawn - yes we stil have to mow our lawn here on the central coast even in November! Anyway, it felt good to get that done for another couple weeks.
  • On Sunday mom and I went out for a walk early in the morning. It was beautiful - the air was still cool, but the sun was warm, so we were quite comfortable! Afterwards I spent a few hours cooking our meals for the coming week, then wasted the afternoon browsing Pinterest. In the evening I watched my Packers lose to the Midgets, and an ever-shrinking group of people try to survive the zombie apocolypse, then went to bed.

And, now it's almost time for Holidailies! I can't believe it's nearly December already, but it is, so here I go again trying to post every day for the entire month. This time I'm kinda planning out my strategy in the hopes that I won't spend too many days sitting in front of a blank screen with writer's block.  Tuesdays are already booked with Teasers, and Wednesdays I'll be reviving one of my favourite photo memes that seems to have died off, Sepia Scenes, Fridays will be either a Friday 5-type list or a shot for Photo Friday, so I only have a few days of the week to worry about. Also, I'll have my usual Year in Review, Best Photos of the Year, Christmas Letter/Card and New Year's Resolution posts as well. I'm still coming up with ideas - probably more than I can handle as usual!


SLO County Cuisine: Crazy Sushi Fever!!

Thursday evening before doing our grocery shopping, mom and I stopped by Crazy Sushi Fever, a new sushi place in Atascadero.

 It's right by the Albertson's (where we rarely grocery shop becasue they're the most expensive store in town, but that's a rant for another time) where the Big Bubba's Bar-B-Que used to be. We never made it to BB'sBBQ which I regret, as I LOVE a good BBQ.

But anyway ...

So, yeah, sushi. Now I love sushi, but my mom has been hesitant to try it despite enjoying seafood in general. The idea of eating raw fish squicks her out. However, I assured her Crazy Sushi Fusion served cooked food and she wouldn't have to eat raw fish, and she finally agreed to try it.

We started with something safe: grilled asparagus. It was delicious!

I also ordered oysters on the half shell because I've been craving them hard since having some delcious oysters (as well as baked mussels) at Hog Island Oyster Co. in SF during Rehab last year. Most half-shell appetizers have 6 or 8 oysters minimum which is just way too much raw shellfish for me to consume by myself, but Crazy Sushi Fever serves just three. That I can handle!

Or so I thought before I saw the damn things:

 I really wish I'd had a ruler to show just how ginormous these things were. Maybe you can tell by the standard-sized slices of lemon at the top and bottom of the plate. In swear that one in the middle was at least 4 or 5 inches long! (insert dirty joke sniggering here. i am a ten-year-old boy sometimes) The top one I was able to down no problem. The bottom one I had to cut in half. The middle on I tried to cut in thirds to make it managable, but was only able to choke down one part of it before giving up. (shudders) I think my craving for raw oyters has been satisfied and perhaps damaged for quite some time.

Not that they were bad or anything, but they didn't taste as good as Hog Island's and when they're so big hyou have to chew them a LOT ... well, that's a bit more than I really expected.

Anyway, we both chose better for our entrees with my mom having the teriyaki salmon and I had the Mustang (cooked) roll which had soft-shell crab, avocado and eel.

 Mom said her salmon was very good and my roll was good, too, but it was not as good as the rolls I've had at Shin's Sushi, plus it was huge! We were both stuffed when we walked out of there.

In general, the food is good, the atmosphere is nice, and the people are really nice and attentive, but with two other sushi places in town (neither of which I've tried yet), I'm not sure I'd make another trip to Crazy Sushi Fever any time soon. Three-and-a-half stars out of five, I think.

Marty the Winner!

Well, between surviving Halloween, starting NaNoWriMo, dealing with weird weather and changing clocks and the fracking election, plus getting sick and trying to recover from that,  I completely forgot to post a picture of my little winner, Marty!


Teaser Tuesday: Nerd Do Well by Simon Pegg

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizBof Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

•Grab your current read
•Open to a random page
•Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
•BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
•Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!


This week I'm enjoying a fabulous autobiography called Nerd Do Wellby Simon Pegg, one of my favourite actors. His film Shaun of the Dead is one of my all-time favourites followed closely by Hot Fuzz. If you haven't seen those films, you're missing out. Seriously, you should go rent/download them right now (I believe they're both rated "R", if that makes any difference to you). It's okay. I'll wait.

In the meantime, here's my teasers from page 21 on my nook (please be forewarned there's a naughty word and some crude humour in the following paragraph, so you might want to move along if such things offend you.):

Remember when only a few people had mobile phones. Generally regarded as an object of derision, you would occasionally see business types clutching these ridiculous grey bricks to their faces and mutter to yourself, 'What a prick.' Nowadays, an eyebrow hardly flutters when we see a ten-year-old child happily texting away. You probably wouldn't notice anyway; you'd be too busy downloading an app that could definitively pinpoint who it was that had just farted in your Tube carriage.