The downhill slide started with a hotel reservation snafu that required 16 emails and two phone calls to resolve.
While I was fuming, I realized the house felt chillier than it should, and when I went to check the thermostat?
All I got was a teeny tiny blank screen of death. Which meant the heating system had gone offline. For the second time in the span of 30 days.When I get frustrated and angry I do snarl (oh yes I do!). I do take the Lord's name in vain and I do shake a fist and curse. But more centrally to our tale today, when I get frustrated enough, infuriated beyond measure, I veer into tearful territory.
And that, friends and fellow bloggers is precisely how I found myself yesterday by mid morning. Tearful. Everything simple had become complicated, everything easy had become difficult, and I was so frustrated with the indignity and injustice of it all (OK OK I know this was me getting overblown, I have not forgotten Haiti or world hunger, relax) that I had tears stinging in my eyes.
I thought to myself if anybody Mary Poppinsed their way into my presence and told me brightly "If life gives you lemons, make lemonade!" I would gladly have punched them for their trouble. (Then apologized. I was frustrated, not brutish.)
So I began to play with the phrase to distract myself from how long it might take the repair service guy to come look at our stupid STUPID nonfunctional heater.
"If life gives you tears, make.....".
French Onion Soup! Mon Dieu! Naturelment! I'd been meaning to make onion soup for ages.I like it, the Hub loves it, and even though I had not yet stumbled across THE recipe, every iteration so far had been not only edible, but credible as a representation of the genre.So out came the previously printed recipes, the sharp knife and the large cutting board. A bag of onions fetched from their garage storage spot, a bouquet garni cobbled together from herbs snipped from our garden in between rainy spells, some organic beef stock I'd nabbed on sale at Wheatsville, and I was just about set.
As it turns out, the heater required two service visits. Service guy number the first was apparently so overwhelmed by the onion fumes in our house that he may have missed something. Service guy the second was a sport, didn't charge additionally for his visit or efforts, and I ended up with onion soup plus a functional heater.Win/win.
Side note: In support of the conceit that I make a wide variety of dishes for dinner (as opposed to a sinking feeling some nights that "If This is Tuesday it Must Be Meat Loaf"), I'd been recording our dinner entrees on the calendar for the past few weeks just to keep track.
It's been a fun prospect as it turns out. Looking back on three weeks of dinner is at the very least enlightening as to our patterns. It has also provided a good counter argument to certain younger diners who consistently try to make a case for fast food with the contention it has been "ages" since we had fill-in-the-blank-fast-food. Unless by "ages" they mean days. Which, given the stretchy tendency of some days, I totally get.
Looking back?We've had, in no particular order, Seafood Lasagna (an experiment that fell into the "meh-OK" category), potato onion soup, grilled lamb sirloin, ginger fried rice, brats, sliders, roasted chicken and bolognese on pasta. Plus take-out barbeque, fried chicken, pizza, and more pizza.
Once I had onion soup doing a Vulcan Flavor meld in the refrigerator, the heater back online, and the hotel reservation snafu unfued, in a rush of largesse I decided to treat everybody (read:long suffering me/myself/I) to a simple chocolate cake as a celebration of our Saved from the Trashbin Wednesday.The recipe that follows is from Sweet Paul's website and is just as he describes it - a wonderful brownie style cake, delicious served warm as a delivery vehicle for a scoop of ice cream. And as it turns out, just the thing to celebrate a Wednesday yanked out of the dumpster.