Monday, July 12, 2010

6 Amazing Things

All kinds of amazing things have been going on here in Flartopia.  First, and not at all in order, it finally rained today! 
Raindrops on 'maters, and whiskers on chickens...

It has probably been a month since we've had anything more than a short shower.  I've been watering as much as possible from the rain barrel, but have also turned on the soaker hose two or three times to keep the 'maters happy.  Of course, wandering outside in my pjs this morning to turn on the hose at 6 am, I hadn't yet heard the weather report calling for 60% chance of storms!

The 'maters should be downright ecstatic today.

Second, the rabbits have kept away from our juicy red crop for the past week or so, as the real ones ripen up.  These are called Nepal; we grew all of these from seeds we bought from a local farm.
What's that, little 'mater?  Buggie gave you a boo-boo?  That's ok honey, we'll eat you anyway!

Third, Miss Chef's and my employment statuses (stati?) have changed.  I have got another quarter off.  Apparently the school doesn't feel like paying me to teach only four students...which I understand, but as Miss Chef pointed out, think how much I could do with only four students!  [pause for educator's daydream....]

Ok, well, that's fine, because Miss Chef is, at the very moment I type this, beginning her own teaching career!  That's right, she's also got a part-time job, teaching a beginning skills class in the culinary department.  She very patiently listened to all my advice (such a sweetheart), and claimed to be nervous, but I know she's very well-prepared.  I told her she probably wouldn't be as nervous as I was before my first class, waking up and spending some quality time dry-heaving in the bathroom.  [pause for educator's remembered nightmare...]

For those of you keeping score, this means that I currently have one (1) job, while Miss Chef can claim four (4)!  HAHAHAHAHA, THAT'S INSANE!  Truth is, she put herself on hiatus from the caterer's, so it's really only three (3).  That's much more reasonable, right?  Ok, well, she's also told Michele at Bosky Acres to start looking for a replacement for her by the end of August, so by the end of the quarter, she'll have (ho-hum) only two (2) jobs.

Because, having lived with a teacher, Miss Chef is smart enough to know, teaching is never a part-time job.

As for me, not only am I down to one (1) job, but business has slowed down enough the last few days that we're no longer behind.  That's right, I left the office at 4:59 today, and didn't look back!

flowering cinnamon basil

Knowing that I'd have my evenings free, I came to the conclusion that this would be the perfect time to do something I've needed to really find some balance--take yoga classes.  Unfortunately, the local Y membership is surprisingly I decided to be cheap as well as confirming my commitment.  I'll pull out my old Lilias yoga tape and do it twice a week.  If I keep it up long enough that it becomes too easy, then I'll look at classes again.

So tonight, I came home, changed and dug out my tape.  Popped it into the VCR, and hit "Play."

Heh.  There seems to be a problem with the tv-VCR connection.

Now, this would have been a great excuse to give up, but instead I rustled around in our entertainment center until I came up with a DVD instead, not of yoga, but of tai chi.  I have never done tai chi in my life, but I've always been curious about it.  Thanks to Miss Chef, today was my opportunity to find out just what I'd expected: it's harder than it looks!

But...I did it.

I think that's the fourth amazing thing--I started an exercise program for myself. And here's the fifth one: since I was home so "early," I cooked myself a real meal for dinner!

Miss Chef's "Santa Fe Rice & Beans"

This is a quick and easy dish that we serve meatless, though I suppose you could add some chicken or pork if you so desired.  It's pretty much corn and a can of black beans, heated up with some onion, garlic, cumin and just a touch of cayenne, then finished off with a very generous dollop of sour cream and, of course, some garden fresh tomatoes!  (and I should have added a bell pepper, but I forgot.)

We usually serve it over rice, but it would probably go great on some nachos, too....

So, you're wondering, good golly, we're only up to number five? When is she gonna get to number six?  Well, actually, the very first picture at the top of this post is number six!  Did it look familiar?  Have you been swimming yet this summer?

If you did, maybe you recognized that pattern as the bottom of a pool.  Yes, we have a pool now!  Well, sort's one of these:

Of course, ours doesn't come with the assorted youth, or the three-acre backyard.  

Miss Chef's parents actually gave this to her as a gift over a year ago, but it was much larger than she had anticipated, and the only place she felt comfortable putting it up was also the only spot that I really wanted to keep the grass intact.  So it stayed in the box in the shed all winter.

Somehow, having the fence put in made Miss Chef reconsider where she'd be willing to place the inflat-a-tubpool.  So last Thursday I came home to a 16' blue tarp spread out on the lawn, and a very hopeful look on Miss Chef's face.   It took a few days to fill up, and, because our yard turns out to be more sloped than we realized, we can't fill it up all the way without risking an AFV*-style collapse into the tomatoes.  But it's still a wonderful way to cool off, relax, and spend even more time in our newly-fenced backyard.

So I guess it's good for you that it rained today, or I'd probably be out there right now, instead of sharing six amazing things with you!

Have a great week, everybody.

*America's Funniest (home) Videos


  1. Hi Flartus! Thanks for visiting my blog. The best thing happened - I found your blog! It's fun to read.

  2. What a super duper great week!!

    Hooray for the job changes!! I think you having some down time is ideal- you've been going at full steam for so long. And I really wish I lived closer to you because I would SO love a basics class with Miss Chef! Hey- you should have her do a vlog of some basic skills! I'd love to learn about different cooking techniques and better cutting techniques...

    Yay for the pool! What fun!

    I made a very similar dinner last night! It was rice, corn, canned tomato (Red Gold mexican fiesta with peppers) and tilapia. So yummy!! I've done the corn, tomato, black bean thing before. In fact, Trader joe's makes a black bean and corn salsa that I looooove.!

    SUPER BIG YAY on starting an exercise plan!! I've not tried tai chi before, either. But maybe I will!

  3. Alright. I can't take it anymore. The pics of those delicious tomatoes has done me in! Time to get my butt to the Farmers Market and buy some real, honest to goodness, tasty tomatoes!!!
    A few years back we had a pool like yours. Sure was wonderful on those excrutiating hot days.
    And thanks for the recips of the black beans and rice. Yup, bell pepper would be yummy in it. Thanks! :)

  4. can 10 people really fit comfortably in that pool? sure looks inviting. does Rosie like it?

    yes, the birds love to eat eggs, cooked or raw.

  5. I'm afraid my version of your Santa Fe stuff is non-farmerish: canned black beans, corn, and Rotel tomatoes! I usually forget to add onion, don't like green peppers, and I'm never sure how to use cumin. But whatever works!!!

    Congrats on one less (job, that is). See? You've already filled up the space!!!

    Nancy in Iowa

  6. I wish I could send you some of the rain we have been getting, at least for a few days so we can get our hay put up! It won't quit raining long enough here to get it cut, baled and put up and I am starting to stress about it! Congrats to Miss Chef on the new teaching career! I bet she teaches a great class.


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