Friday, June 20, 2008

Boxer's Knuckles

Why do I have a tendency to be doing perfectly simple things and seriously hurt myself?

In 5th grade I was looking back over my shoulder while reaching to open a door. I bumped the push-bar and "jammed" my finger, finding out a couple weeks later that I had actually broken the bone in my hand and had to wear a cast on my right hand for months. I also have a tendency to easily choke on water. Andrew and I were driving to school from visiting my family, and I took a drink from my bottle, thinking it was almost empty. I drained the bottle, only then finding out it was too much. I tried to swallow it all and ended up inhaling. Andrew almost pulled over, as I was gasping for air. After several long moments, I finally cleared my windpipes with several large burps. How embarrassing!

So Tuesday morning before I went to work, I was using my resistance band to strength train. Just as I was pulling a lat row, the hook that attached to the door came right off! The plastic part at the end snapped back and hit my bent knuckle, splitting the skin across the joint. I immediately washed it out with soap and water, not willing to look at it too closely before I got a bandage and some pressure on it. I can't explain the pain I felt, just a radiating, aching, throbbing pain. What was worse than the pain, though, was knowing I still had to shower, wash my hair, and get to work within the next 40 minutes. I found a clothespin and wrapped it to my finger so it wouldn't bend, stuck my hand in a ziploc baggie and tried my best to wash my hair with one hand. Now, four days later, the cut looks pretty good. It's not infected at least. Still haven't tried to bend my finger all the way. The finger is bruised, but I think I'll live.

What's up with me? Does anybody else hurt themselves doing what most people do every day without incident?

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Birthday Treats

I live a simple life, but a blessed one. I don't need much to feel extravagantly loved.

My 25th birthday was Monday. I knew Andrew had something in mind, but I wasn't sure what.

My day at work was wonderful. I got there early, earlier than usual. I was there for about an hour when I heard the tell-tale whisperings. Every birthday we have cake and sing to the birthday person. One year I was forgotten, almost, when my birthday came and went and we ended up celebrating it the same day as my boss' three days later. I tried not to be disappointed. It was summer time and there was hardly anybody there on my actual birthday. But I'm kind of a birthday nut. I suppose it's a little selfish of me. I always feel I'm a notch more "special" on my special day. I don't even need a party, if people just wish me a happy birthday. This year my co-workers did a great job. I knew what was up when people started leaving their offices en masse, but it's fun to play along. They said I was "needed in the kitchen." When I came out to find everybody singing, gathered around the table with a candle-lit chocolate cake in the middle, I knew this year it was special.

By the end of my day, I was helping a friend figure something out at her desk, which is by the front door. I remember now hearing the door open, but at work I'm so used to people going in and out that I ignore the door. I see somebody walking toward me like they are looking for my attention. I finally look to see who it is, and of course, you probably already guessed it's Andrew. I was surprised, though, because he never comes to my office! He had come to pick me up to whisk me off for my birthday!

First we went to Williams-Sonoma, where I picked out a nice, $80 Wusthof kitchen knife. Yes, technically it was last year's Christmas present, but we just never went shopping for it. And shopping is the fun part! Then we went to Books-a-Million, where I browsed, but used great birthday restraint, because I kept seeing books I already have but haven't read yet. I decided I would have a happier birthday without one more book on my shelf that I probably wouldn't get to for 2 years. Anyway, then we went to Thai Spice, a nice Thai restaurant that we've always heard about but never tried. I had Panang Curry, and Andrew had a dish with basil, cashews, avocados, potatoes, and a coconut milk curry sauce. Then we went to our beloved TeaFusions and bought two more bags of loose-leaf tea. I have never had such great tea--I hope that place never closes! After that we went home and watched two episodes of Gilmore Girls, one of our favorite shows (and yes, we have seasons 1-4 on DVD).

You know the best part of all--my favorite part about what Andrew did for me? My t-shirt, jeans, tennis shoes and baseball hat husband, who later revealed he had worked from home that day, dressed up in his nice Dockers and pin-striped dress shirt, just to take me out. One thing you should know about my husband--he does not like to dress up or even take pains to look "casually nice". He's no metro. But he dressed up for me! I am a lucky girl. :) Again, it doesn't take much for me to feel extravagantly loved.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Just Like Grandma Used to Do

I'm supposed to be getting ready for a friend's baby shower, which I'm helping to plan. But I just can't wait to share this awesome magazine with all 3 people who read my blog! I posted a link in my Nota Bene sidebar, but this needs more recognition.

I subscribe to a magazine called ReadyMade, which features practical, fun, and eccentric do-it-yourself projects. One of its main credos is sustainability and simplicity. I love it! It's right up my alley. But what got me so excited today was checking in online and finding articles about canning and jarring fresh produce. An age-old tradition and skill that has been mostly lost among today's buy-tomatoes-any-time-of-the-year convenience. And it's super easy! You can jar cherries, apricots, pickles, tomatoes, pretty much anything with an acidity greater than beer.
Once I get a garden, or perhaps if I get some fruits and veggies from the local u-pick farm, I might try some canning.

Check out the link in my Nota Bene, and for the article on canning, click here.