August Begins

Well, here it is, August!

August came in with a big thunderstorm and downpour this afternoon.  It was most welcome, and I could almost hear the sighs of relief from the flora and fauna.  The rain started just as Attila arrived home from work, finding me in the garage listening to the rain on the new metal roof, enjoying the dryness of it all.

July was a month where the humidex reached from 30C to 35C almost every day. It looks like August will be more of the same. It isn’t my favourite kind of weather. The humidity is so cloying.

Tonight’s dinner was a quick and easy Instant Pot Tuna Noodle Casserole.  This recipe has grated cheese stirred in after cooking, it was very nice.  Attila loved it.  There isn’t much I love since I am eating such a low sodium diet, nice is as good as it gets.

When I was shopping earlier in the week, I bought a bag of beautiful looking grapefruit.  We have been eating them in the evenings as a snack.  I love grapefruit, and for years I could not have it because it was contraindicated by my medication.  The medication changed and now I can eat grapefruit again.  A small, but welcome, mercy.

Attila’s cell phone is pay as you go, and needed to be topped up.  Since he uses his cell phone a lot more than I use mine, mostly to call me here at home, his minutes disappear a lot more quickly.  Therefore the cheapest 100 minute prepaid plan seemed a viable solution, with a monthly fee which annually adds up to about the same price as the current pay per use.

I felt sorry for the people I dealt with today, sorting out the cell phone account. I asked a few simple questions, but because the call center people are not from Canada, the nuances of our culture are not familiar to them.  The simple questions ended up taking almost three hours to work through, and the unfortunate last fellow I spoke with, I spoke to three different people, was downright discouraged by the end of the call.  He was polite to the end though. We got the job done, in the end, the cell phone works and in a few months I will go back into the account and set up automatic updates.

Cell phones are getting increasingly expensive to operate, the options are narrowing, masked as improvements, which they aren’t.  My cell phone service provider recently sent me a text message informing me that my pay per use plan was no longer available, and that I would be automatically transferred to a much more expensive plan.  I spent an entire morning on the telephone with them as well, and I can’t say they enjoyed my company.  We got the job done.

Where we once spent $200 annually on cell phones, we now spend $300 to $400 annually.  At our income level this is a significant incursion on available funds.

Worldly Distractions

Weather

26°C
Date: 6:00 PM EDT Wednesday 1 August 2018
Condition: Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 101.2 kPa
Tendency: Falling
Temperature: 25.8°C
Dew point: 22.1°C
Humidity: 80%
Wind: SW 16 km/h
Humidex: 35
Visibility: 24 km

Quote

“Use what talents you possess: the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best.”
Henry Van Dyke
1852 – 1933

Tryin’ It Out

A weekday, my turn to cook!

So, today I rummaged through the cupboard and found part of a package of rice/quinoa pasta. I cooked it according to the package directions. That was a start. What next? I found a tin of low-sodium, low-cholesterol cream of mushroom soup, hanging around in the cupboard. I also rummaged up a can of flaked tuna, preserved in water. At the back of a bottom cupboard I dragged out the slow cooker. The pasta was drained and added, the cans were opened and added. Feeling lazy, I added garlic granules, dehydrated onion flakes, lemon juice, and a little bit of brown sugar. When it was all mixed together, on went the lid, and tonight I’ll find out how it turns out. The worst that can happen is that Attila hates it, and will only eat it for one meal, which would mean I would be eating the leftovers myself. This is a possibility I keep in mind when I am making up recipes.

Attila does not like deviation from “traditional” recipes. He would not consider today’s offering as a Tuna Noodle Casserole. I will rename the effort, calling it Quinoa Casserole, hopefully eliminating the expectations that the title Tuna Noodle Casserole evokes.

Attila eats at least two meals every evening. He eats about five times more than I do, sometimes more. If he doesn’t consume that much food, he begins to lose weight. Eating my meagre rations, if I eat even a little bit more, I gain weight. If I eat a lot less, my weight is maintained. If I eat less than would sustain health, I lose a little bit of weight, very slowly. My BMI is not what is should be, so I try to eat as little as possible and still maintain health… it is tricky, and I’ve been unsuccessful in losing the stubborn 15-20 pounds that really need to come off. I think I would appreciate this metabolic efficiency during a famine, but it isn’t doing me any favours under present conditions.

Worldly Distractions

Weather

0°C
Date: 12:00 PM EDT Wednesday 14 March 2018
Condition: Light Snow
Pressure: 100.0 kPa
Tendency: Falling
Temperature: -0.4°C
Dew point: -1.8°C
Humidity: 91%
Wind: NW 19 km/h
Wind Chill: -6
Visibility: 2 km

Quote

“No one who cannot rejoice in the discovery of his own mistakes deserves to be called a scholar.”
Donald Foster

Gray Day

Today I made a huge bath of vegetable beef soup, and a tuna noodle casserole. The soup is for me, it has a wee bit of sodium in it, but not a significant amount. The soup recipe makes four litres of soup. The tuna noodle casserole is sodium reduced, taking sodium in the canned tuna and in the can of sodium reduced cream of mushroom soup. The casserole will provide one dinner for two, and a lunch for one (Attila).

A grey day out there today. It snowed off and on, so any thoughts I had of venturing out were vanquished in white. Adding to the greyness of the day is the new view from the living room window. I used to look out and see the tops of the trees in the distance, so wonderful. They have all been chopped down and bulldozed into a corner of the property slated for rental units at the end of the street. Now all I see out the window is grey sky, and rooftops; no branches swaying in the wind, no branches to hold a line of gentle of white snow. I miss the trees.

February is such a wintry month!

My insurance company has gone paperless, offering no alternative options. Now I have to logon to the internet to see the bill, it isn’t available any other way. I hate this! The internet requires a device and an account, which I have at the moment, but that can change, for anyone, that can change, and then where are you!

Things are quiet at Mist Cottage. It doesn’t feel like “home” anymore, it feels like a place I am staying. It is a nice place to stay. I feel homesick from time to time, there is no home to go back to though, there is only forward, until I can establish a new home for myself, here or elsewhere. Some things just take time, time, time.

Worldly Distractions

Weather

-6°C
Date: 3:00 PM EST Friday 9 February 2018
Condition: Light Snow
Pressure: 102.8 kPa
Tendency: Falling
Temperature: -5.9°C
Dew point: -7.7°C
Humidity: 87%
Wind: S 8 km/h
Wind Chill: -10
Visibility: 3 km

Quote

“Time cools, time clarifies; no mood can be maintained quite unaltered through the course of hours.”
Mark Twain
1835 – 1910