Posted tagged ‘Chocolate’

“It takes a long time to grow an old friend.”

October 12, 2017

My friends have left, and my house is ever so quiet. As always we had the best time together. On Tuesday we had a ride along the ocean, and I took them to my favorite spots. The sun was glinting off the water. It was so warm people sat on beach chairs in the sand sunning themselves. It was a summer day in fall.

We ate appetizers on the deck. The birds had found the filled feeders, and they flew back and forth from feeders to branches. Most of them were chickadees.

Peg had brought dinner, shrimp pesto. She had also brought vegetables, a cheese log dip, crackers, some fruit and dessert. The brownies had chocolate chips, and there was a thick fudge sauce to put on them adding to the chocolate overload though I would contend there is really no such thing as a chocolate overload. I am just using the term to give a vivid picture of how wonderful dessert was. Gracie was restless that night. At 1:30 she wanted food so I fed her and I had a brownie. Afterwards, we were both quite content.

Bill is a talented furniture maker and handyman. He did some repairs in the house, a few of which have been driving me crazy. Some of the fixes include the toilet upstairs which now flushes, the toilet holder downstairs again secure on the wall, my old curio cabinet repaired and my front storm shutting automatically.

Bill and Peg brought gifts. One was a wooden Red Sox peg board. Another was a framed silhouette of a boxer. There was homemade grape jelly and African coffee. The dip was in a pottery bowl and the bowl was also a gift. I can’t think there are better guests than Bill and Peg.

Last night we had dinner at Karoo’s, a South African restaurant. It is one of my favorite places. Bill and Peg had been there before and requested it for this trip. I had monkey ribs and beef samosas for appetizers. The drink I ordered, the speciality of the night, was amazingly refreshing with vodka, grapefruit juice and a simple syrup. My dinner was bobotie beef, a curried meatloaf served with turmeric rice and chutney. Bill and Peg both had West African peanut soup with pumpkin added though in Ghana it would have been groundnut soup. Peg had a falafel sandwich. All of us had come to love Lebanese food in Ghana, and we ate many felafel sandwiches, all wrapped in foil.

This morning was leisurely. Sadly, at close to eleven, Peg and Bill started loading up to go home. Gracie and I went outside to say goodbye. My house feels empty without them.

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“A cold wind was blowing from the north, and it made the trees rustle like living things.”

September 19, 2017

The window by my head was open. When I first heard the rain falling, it was so gentle I thought it might have been a breeze rustling the leaves, but when the sound continued, I knew it had to be rain. It stopped and started again and again, and that’s been the morning. I opened and shut the window a few times as the dampness was chilly. Finally I grabbed the afghan and left the window open. Gracie joined me and we both fell back to sleep.

Tropical storm conditions are expected on the Cape within 36 hours. What is left of Jose will bring rain, 2 to 4 inches, and heavy winds of around 65 MPH. The surf will be high,  and there will be rip currents and coastal flooding. I’m going out to the deck later to take down the decorations hanging from the trees. I’ll leave the bird feeders until the last. I have to go out later as I have no dog food. She had her morning can but will be looking for more this evening. Besides, I need bread.

The flies are still here, but their numbers are far smaller. I see two on the ceiling in this room, and I killed four buzzing around a dining room window pane. Three others were set free. They had been on the door screen. This was quite the infestation. I’m trying to figure out what offense of mine has caused such wrath.

It is a dismal day, a dark day. I need to go to the library as I have finished the books I got last week, and I can’t imagine being housebound without books and snacks. Need I mention chocolate?

From when I was a kid, I only remember hurricane Carol. I suspect there were probably more but Carol was so exciting it still hangs around my memory drawers. I was too young to notice damage or destruction so I only remember the wind and the pelting rain.  I watched out the picture window as the trees bent and the tops of the bushes seemed to touch the ground. After Carol moved on, we went outside. The streets and the yards were filled with debris, mostly branches. Some of the leaves still on the trees had died; they were shriveled and brown. Some of the trees had healthy leaves on one side and dead ones on the other.

Tomorrow is my Coffee day off, but if Jose lives up to its hype, I’ll keep you updated.

“Life is more fun if you play games.”

August 13, 2017

The rain fell most of the day yesterday. Sometimes it was heavy and other times just misty. When I first woke up this morning, it was cloudy. When I woke up a second time, it was still cloudy but the sun poked through a couple of times giving me some hope for a nice day. It will be warm, low 80’s, but less humid.

Gracie and I did a couple of errands yesterday. We took 6A, but it too was filled with traffic, tourists looking to while away the rainy day.I learned in Ghana to see the bugs as protein I stopped at the candy store to get some peanut butter cups and chocolate peppermints for movie night. That shop was filled with more people than I’ve ever seen in there. I guess there is no better cure for a rainy day than chocolate. Actually, chocolates are a panacea for whatever ails us.

The other evening I was having a bowl of cereal, Rice Krispies, when I noticed a small bug swimming on top of the cereal. I flicked it out of the bowl and kept eating. I learned in Ghana to see bugs in my food, especially flour, as added protein. It is one of the strange things I learned.

I like Life Savers, but my favorites are made by Reed’s, root beer closely followed by cinnamon. Wintergreen is my favorite flavor of Life Savers. In a package I got in Ghana from my mother were a few rolls of Life Saver’s tropical fruits. I guess she figured they were a fun choice. The colors were the same as the fruit colors, even that green of honeydew melons and the light orange of cantaloup. The coconut was my favorite. We sat one night guessing all the fruits. It was our evening’s entertainment. It didn’t take much to amuse us.

My friends and I play games once a week. In the winter it is on Sunday night then we watch The Amazing Race which was DVR’d on Friday. We didn’t like it on Friday so we continued with Sunday. Creatures of habit I guess. Now it is Saturday night, movie night. We have some appetizers then play Phase 10 before the movie. If we have time, mostly in the winter, we also play Sorry. We never seem to tire of either game. We even keep a list of winners from each week. There is usually a bit of gloating. I was the gloater last week.

“To be overcome by the fragrance of flowers is a delectable form of defeat.”

June 1, 2017

The rain yesterday was torrential at times. We even had thunder and lightning. Not once did the sun make an appearance. It was too busy shining in Boston. Gracie and I left for the dump when the rain was misty, but by the time we got there, it was pouring. I figured I was there anyway and might as well get rid of the trash. My sweatshirt got soaked. I decided right then and there I deserved one more stop, the chocolate store, the best decision of the day.

My eye is clear, but I still have to take eye drops four times a day. My other eye will be done June 6th.

The early morning was lovely. The air had a crispness almost more fall than summer, and it had the best after the rain smell, both fresh and clean and smelling of flowers and mulch. I stood on the deck watching Gracie and taking in the morning. Finally, we both went inside: me to coffee and the papers and Gracie to her morning snack. It will be warm today, a welcome change in the weather. I’ve already opened a window.

I’ve got to empty the water in the outdoor furniture covers so they can dry and then be put away. My deck still looks like it’s winter. A lot needs to be done. Plant shelves need to be sanded then repainted. The clay pots need cleaning before they can be filled with flowers, the same with the deck boxes. Placing the candle hooks in the pine trees will take a bit of ingenuity as some of the branches were lopped off during the fall clean-up. Lights on a few backyard trees have to be replaced. They died over the winter. I’m hoping for lots of warmth today, enough to dry everything so I can be outside on the deck reading and enjoying the air. I’ve had enough of the house.

“All tradition is merely the past.”

November 18, 2016

Today is cloudy and damp. The wind is blowing more leaves off the trees. The backyard has a layer of crusty brown leaves. Gracie makes noise when she walks around. The deck is covered again. Dismal is the best description of the weather.

I have a few errands today. Gracie is out of canned food, and I need bread. I’m also thinking I need a whoopie pie to chase away the clouds. Chocolate makes every day sunny.

My table is filled with catalogues with dog-eared pages. I am on the hunt for the last of my Christmas gifts. Now I am into the traditional. I need more ornaments as I give everyone a new ornament each year. That started when my nephews and niece were born. When they got married, they collected all their ornaments from my sister for their very first trees. Now I also buy ornaments for their kids and their husband and wives. Everyone also gets a bar of soap, not just any soap but soap with a bit of whimsy. I have bought lobsters, crabs, starfish, nutcrackers and, for the guys, soap on a rope. The kids get new books. I also hunt for fun gifts. My brother-in-law, the fisherman, is getting an antique drop line. I love to find stuff like that. It does take a bit of hunting, but the fun is in the hunt. Besides, I sometimes find a bauble for myself. Last night I tried to order gingerbread house kits. I started sending houses to be constructed when my oldest nephew was three.

Last night I tried to order gingerbread house kits, also traditional. I started sending houses to be constructed when my oldest nephew was three. I sent them every year after that. Now I send one to my nephew’s two children and my niece’s two. My two friends and I construct small ones on Christmas Eve, a newer tradition. I had trouble with the website so I called them last night. The owner happened to be there though the place was closed. He promised to call me back, and he did. This morning he found out the website stopped on the ordering page so he took my order over the phone. He was glad I had called him as they didn’t know about the problem.

I do have a great story about the finished house. One year my sister’s kids built theirs, and she warned them to keep their hands off it. Later she caught one of her kids licking the candy on the roof. His defense was he didn’t use his hands. He was right!

“Summer has filled her veins with light and her heart is washed with noon.”

August 28, 2016

Today is another lovely day, sunny and not too humid. We will be cooler here with an ocean breeze keeping us in the high 70’s. Tonight should be even cooler.

The house next door isn’t rented, the first time all summer. I think it’s because many schools start this coming week so vacation is over. The TV has been filled with ads for back to school clothes and supplies. Parents are rejoicing.

Last night was movie night. We watched a 1957 black and white science fiction movie called The Beginning of the End. It was wonderful. The giant grasshoppers, the locust, are destroying whole towns and are headed for Chicago. The hero, a scientist, and the heroine, a newspaper woman, bravely counter the onslaught. She wears a lot of hats and carries petite purses. He stays impeccably dressed and his sharply pleated pants never wrinkle. The movie was quite entertaining. It also made us laugh.

Yesterday I went to the Italian cheese shop and bought goodies for last night: crostini, Taleggio, a soft cheese, and prosciutto. My next stop was the candy store for chocolates and fudge. My friends brought hummus and a hot cheese dip. We dined lavishly as we watched the movie.

Today is a day of rest. Gracie and I need to go to the dump, but that can wait until tomorrow. The day is so lovely we’ll be outside on the deck. Gracie will sleep in the shade, and I’ll sit at the table to finish reading the papers then I think I may just nap on the lounge. Thinking about it is making me yawn.

“Superman is, after all, an alien life form. He is simply the acceptable face of invading realities.”

June 26, 2016

Right now I’m watching Superman, the series from my childhood. I’d forgotten how high Superman’s boots are and how many places Clark Kent disrobes. I love the cars, the fedoras and Lois Lane’s many hats. She goes off to work in suits, matching hats, high heels, pearls, gloves and a leather bag. The operating table scenes were wonderful. I saw a worried doctor, a concerned nurse and a watchful Superman. I never did see the patient.

The end of this spectacular weather is tomorrow when the humidity will be back to join with the temperature to produce a hot, muggy day. I’m figuring it will the first day of air conditioning.

Fern is downstairs already. She even slept on my bed for a bit, and today is the first day she didn’t hide under the bed. It is still difficult to get her to eat the pills she needs so I’m going to try crushing them in food I’ll only give to her.

Today is tend to my deck plants day. I have been lax in getting out there, and the plants are screaming for water. I forgot to buy a new pot to replace the ones the spawns broke when they were running up and down the deck rail so I’ll have to find something to use as a planter. This morning I caught one standing on his hind legs grabbing seeds from the feeder. It was a grey spawn. They haven’t been around for a year or two. It was the red spawns who drove me crazy.

I have been watching a variety of stations, not the major networks. Most of the movies and programs have been old and fun to watch for that reason. Right now I am watching Decades and last night it was MeTv. The commercials are horrible with poor acting and weird products, and they tend to be repeated over and over. Pans and knives seem to be popular.

I have Chinese food in mind. I’m thinking about lo mein and chicken wings. Every now and then I get a craving for something. A week or two ago it was chocolate. I went to Nancy’s candies and bought six chocolates and a piece of fudge. They were delicious. I’ll just have to fit in Chinese food. I can already taste it, hot mustard and all.