...burning incense to mask reality's stench since 1986.
We had family over last night for dinner. Specifically, we had my husband's family. Some of the differences between my DH's family and mine:
Noise level. Nothing louder than normal conversation. My family was much louder. Although our girls are true to their mixed heritage and in social settings, their loud Italian genes dominate.
Conversation. Mostly consisted of small talk and no hands. My family loved discussing polarizing topics, thus elevating the noise level as passions mounted and conversation escalated to shouting matches with lots of hand involvement.
Food. Nice, simple comfort food and just the right quantity. Had I cooked for my family, I would have had to cook 5 courses for 24 adults to feed 6 adults and 2 children, and everyone would have been stuffed and immobile by the end of the meal. Not to mention the leftovers! I would have had to pack away leftovers that would have fed my family until Wednesday.
Either way, getting together with family is nice.
Posted by Rue at 09:18 AM.
"Cleaning your house while your kids are still growing is like shoveling the walk before it stops snowing." ~Phyllis Diller
Alas I may have to concede to that wacky, wild-haired lady's wisdom.
As part of my challenge for 2007 to keep a balance between my work and family life, housekeeping is a HUGE one.
Those of you who have been reading me since the beginning (thank you
) know my obsession with keeping my house clean and uncluttered and the fact that I've been losing that battle since having children.
As you can see from the quote above, I'm really working hard on 'loosening' up a little.
Today I am experimenting with something new. Instead of doing hardcore non-stop cleaning until everything is done, and then beating myself up because I never accomplish everything; I'm puttering about on low power putting things away and clearing up as I am doing other things. Whatever gets done, gets done. Whatever doesn't....
My one indulgence is my neat and tidy office at work. I never flip on the fluorescent overhead light, instead I have two pretty lamps ergo, incandescent lighting. My office is so pleasant and relaxing, my colleagues often just drop in to visit.
Posted by Rue at 01:45 PM.
"Patrick: You can’t prevent death with face cream.
Sally: Yeah? That’s what everyone thinks, but no-one’s ever used it in the quantities I do".
- Sex, Death and Nudity
The climate here is arrid and dry skin is inevitable. I make sure to slather on the moisturizer in the morning after washing my face, everyday. No exceptions. I don't use wimpy cream either. I use thick cream that creates a barrier to trap moisture underneath and protect my skin from the elements.
Yet, some mornings I step out if my house and I can feel the moisture being sucked away into the air.
Some products I use that are reasonably priced and I have had great results with, except in extreme weather are:
Weleda Skin Food (heals windburn overnight!)
Nivea Cream (metal tin made in and imported from Germany)
Venus Crema Glicerinata (Italian product more easily obtainable in Montreal)
Extra Virgin Coconut Oil (food grade sold in health food stores)
Yet, today and tonight the only thing giving my skin relief is a moist face cloth.
My body presents similar challenges. I use the following:
LUSH Dream Cream
Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula Lotion
Johnson's Baby Oil
Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
These are all applied to moist skin straight out of the shower.
It's really dry today. My skin is itching from my head down to my toes. My scalp is itching, the skin on my face, especially my around my eyes hurts.
I have to constantly wear lip balm. I treat my hair to a coconut milk soak when I can. That is applying coconut milk straight out of the can onto hair and scalp and slapping on a plastic cover keeping it on as long as you can stand it before washing it all off.
What kind of comfort challenges do you face related to the climate where you live?
Posted by Rue at 10:47 PM.
I skip the nuts so I can pack some in my little ones' lunches.
* 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 1 teaspoon baking soda
* 1 cup butter
* 3/4 cup brown sugar
* 3/4 cup granulated sugar
* 2 eggs
* 1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
* 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
* 2 cups uncooked rolled oats
* 1 teaspoon vanilla
Sift flour with salt and soda.
Cream butter and sugars; beat in eggs and vanilla until light and fluffy. Stir in sifted dry ingredients, chopped walnuts or pecans, rolled oats, and chocolate chips.
Drop chocolate chip cookie batter by teaspoonfuls, I use a 15ml ice cream scoop, onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake chocolate chip cookies in a preheated 350° oven for about 10 to 12 minutes; cool on racks. Makes about 8 dozen cookies.
Posted by Rue at 09:07 PM.
Our weekend was really low-key which is always nice. We had to go for the mandatory replenishing of food supplies on Saturday.
Sunday on the other hand was nice and slow.
The transition from SAHM to full time working mom has been a bit rocky in the domestic area. Meaning, my house is not as tidy as I would like it be because frankly I don't have the time nor the energy. Also, I haven't been cooking as much as I used to. I have been relying heavily on quick, unimaginative yet nutritious meals topped up with some Vietnamese take away.
Yesterday, I hauled out my Le Creuset dutch oven and made Marcella Hazan's Bolognese sauce
from scratch. Four hours later I cooked up some al dente penne rigate, tossed them together and that was supper. Even my most pickiest little Boo Boo was saying mmmmmm mmmmmm mmmmmmmm
At the same time I made a pizza with tomato, cheese and olives for all our lunches today. I also made a 'white pizza' with just olive oil, coarse sea salt and za'atar, and the piece de resistance was my oatmeal chocolate chip cookies
The fragrances that filled the air were just what the doctor ordered. Now THAT's aromatherapy.
My challenge for 2007 is to maintain a balance between work and home life. To do so we need to have one day a week where we slow down before starting up again. I'm just grateful I love my job and therefore I am spared the "Sunday night dread".
Posted by Rue at 12:17 PM.
This post is mostly directed to my readers of the the witchy persuasion regardless of faith.
Tell me something, and you can email me directly if you do not want to post it here:
What is your curse threshold? How far does an enemy/adversary have to push you before all bets are off and you're pushing back by smacking them with the mother of all whammies?
I consider myself an experienced and disciplined practitioner like many of you who read me (I read you), but I have boundaries and gods help the fool arrogant enough to think they can cross them without consequence.
Posted by Rue at 07:07 PM.
My auntie who raised me passed away last March the night before my hiring interview. I miss her terribly. She was the person I called to discuss everything from family gossip to philosophy.
The other day I picked up a 400g block of savon de marseilles. If you've never seen one of these, it is olive green and contains 72% pure virgin olive oil. Why am I talking about soap, you ask? My auntie always used to tell me about the green soap from France that she loved so much as a child she used to break off pieces of it and nibble on it in secret.
Ten years ago, I stopped in to visit my auntie on my way home from a shopping trip. I had purchased a block of savon de marseilles and pulled it out of my bag to show her. I turned my back for a second to pour a cup of coffee, when I looked back a corner was broken off and my 75 year old auntie looked up at me with a guilty look on her face.
I had completely forgotten all this until I picked up this block of soap the other day.
can bring people back for a moment.
Posted by Rue at 05:07 PM.
Today I was visited by a lovely young lady who had to tell me that I had made such a significant difference in her life she could not go home without telling me so in person.
There is nothing more humbling than this. This lovely young lady with the most sparkling blue eyes and the most serene smile I have ever seen, discovered that she has found her calling and she came to tell me how my instruction and guidance helped her recognize it and experience it fully.
We shared a brief moment where we both knew we had found our 'place' in the world. I thanked her for telling me and told her how much it meant to me.
I was overcome with the enormity of it all and as she walked away, I was moved to tears.
Posted by Rue at 09:29 PM.
These are old, but they are classics. Here's a little mental
illness health humour to give you a giggle.
Welcome to the Psychological Clinic.
If you have an obsessive-compulsive disorder, please press 1, as many times as you like.
If you are co-dependent, please ask someone to press 2 for you.
If you have multiple personality disorder
, please press 3, 4, 5, and 6.
If you are paranoid or delusional, we know who you are and what you want. Just stay on the line so we can trace the call.
If you are schizophrenic, listen carefully and a little voice will tell you which number to press.
If you are depressed, it doesn't really matter which number you press. Probably no one will answer anyway.
"If a person with multiple personality threatens suicide, is it a hostage situation?"
Posted by Rue at 10:23 PM.
"Munsters" actress Yvonne De Carlo dies at 84
By Arthur Spiegelman
LOS ANGELES (Reuters)
- Actress Yvonne De Carlo, who starred in films opposite Clark Gable and Charlton Heston but won enduring fame as wife of a Frankenstein monster-like character in the TV series "The Munsters," has died at age 84, her son said on Wednesday.
Bruce Morgan said his mother, who played Moses' wife in Cecil B. De Mille's 1956 epic "The Ten Commandments," died of natural causes on Monday at the Motion Picture & Television Fund's Retirement Home in the Los Angeles suburb of Woodland Hills.
"She passed away in my arms on Monday," Morgan said, adding that she had been in declining health for several years.
Born in Vancouver, De Carlo was raised in poverty and had to drop out of high school to work. But she won a beauty contest and used that as an entree to bit parts in movies, starting in the 1940s.
She had bit parts in "For Whom the Bell Tolls" (1943) and "The Road to Morocco" (1941). But in 1945, she won a key role in "Salome, Where She Danced," about a ballerina who lands in a small Arizona town.
Paramount signed De Carlo, it was said, because she resembled its major star, Dorothy Lamour, and executives there wanted to warn Lamour that she could be replaced if she gave the studio trouble.
De Carlo appeared in such B-movie staples as "Frontier Gal," "Scarlet Angel" and "Shotgun," showing off an hour-glass figure that won her many fans.
STAR OF STAGE AND SCREEN
« Okay, that's it.
While most of the films she made during that period were forgettable, she starred as one of Alec Guinness's two wives in the British comedy classic "The Captain's Paradise" and opposite Heston as Moses' wife in "The Ten Commandments." She also appeared with Gable and Sidney Poitier in 1957's "Band of Angels."
She dropped out of films in 1959 to raise a family, but returned to work in television, where she became a cult favourite as the heavily made-up, ghoulish Lily Munster on the popular sitcom "The Munsters."
From 1964 to 1966, she played opposite Fred Gwynne, who starred as her good-natured but scary-looking spouse, Herman Munster, the head of an oddball family who lived in a big, creepy house at 1313 Mockingbird Lane.
She made nearly 100 films in all, played on Broadway, most famously in Stephen Sondheim's "Follies," and made guest appearances on such TV series as "Bonanza" and "The Virginian."
In a 1987 autobiography, she claimed to have had affairs with several of Hollywood's leading figures, including Howard Hughes, Robert Taylor and Billy Wilder.
Before her death, she performed supporting roles in two independent movies that have yet to be released, playing a psychic who channels UFOs in one and an orphanage nun during World War Two in the other, Morgan said.
"So she's not done yet," he told Reuters.
Her last screen role seen before her death was as an eccentric apartment dweller in the 1995 TV movie "The Barefoot Executive," said her longtime agent, Scott Stander.
"She was quite a pistol," Stander said. "She aged gracefully, she was a beautiful lady."
Posted by Rue at 07:38 PM.