Feb 6, 2011

Sick yet?

I survived the blizzard only to get some kind of sinus/cold thing that has brought me low for the last couple of days.  I have made my way through most of a new box of kleenex and have reached the stage where I can be upright without also being dizzy and breathe with my mouth closed.
My solution for this is rinsing out my sinuses with the equivalent of a netti-pot (NeilMed Sinus Rinse), gargling with salt water, and putting a couple of drops of alcohol in my ears at least twice a day.  That would be rubbing alcohol, just saying so that my more heavily drinking followers don't end up with a big mess in their ears.  Just old home remedies, but they work for me.  My children just hate to do all of these practical and free things, and I have to sometimes stand over them to get them to do them, but it is worth it.  Yes, I have insurance.  Big whoop.  I still can't afford to go to the doctor.  If you define "afford" as being able to spend the money on the Dr. instead of gas or food, that is.  But enough of the depressing stuff.
Anyway, the reason for this post is that I have discovered a wonderful new twist to grilled cheese sandwiches.  At least, I think I have.  It's new to me.
Arriving at the Cyclist's house yesterday, blowing my nose and breathing through my mouth, he took pity upon me and offfered me anything he had in his cabinets for lunch.  I don't mean to give the impression that this was a vast array of stuff, it was not.  But there was a can of tomato soup and enough cheese to make a grilled sandwich if I was willing to make it with Beefsteak Rye Bread.  I was.  It was the best grilled cheese I've had in years, maybe ever.  Normally I don't care for Rye bread but in this instance it was really, really good.  You should give it a try.  Unless this is something everyone has known except me, and then I guess you can just welcome me to the club.
The Cyclist offered to fix supper later, and after poring over cook books, we was torn between grilled ham and cheese sandwiches with cole slaw and bacon cheesburgers and tots.  He even went to the store by himself and bought the groceries.  This is a very big deal.  Usually he will concede to drive me to the store, but that is as far as he will go.  When he has to go to Wal Mart for a big grocery spree, he waits until midnight.  Really.  He honestly hates going there more than anyone else I know.  EVEN ME.  It's hard not to respect him for that, don't you think?
Anyway, he came back with groceries and we ended up having bacon cheeseburgers on grilled buns (the secret to a good cheeseburger) with coleslaw on top.
Unconventional but delicious.
I mean, really, really good.  I have had coleslaw on pulled pork sandwiches before and I knew it was good.  We decided to give it a whirl on cheeseburgers, and we were not disappointed.   So, unless this is also some kind of open secret, there is another idea.   Especially if you are stuck in the house and don't really care for coleslaw, but have some on hand.  Try it as a dressing on about any sandwich and I think you will like it.
I felt so much better this morning, having not had to blow my nose constantly and being able to breathe with my mouth shut and everything, I offered to make breakfast.
I made potato cakes, which were ready to go, only had to be cooked, and an omelet.  Easy, right?  Easy if you are used to cooking on an electric stove instead of gas and you don't have someone talking non-stop.  Electric stoves do not hold a candle to gas stoves when it comes to speed or effeciency.  I got two skillets warmed up, but not hot enough.  Finally when they got hot enough to put the food in, suddenly they were really too hot, and my onions were burning before I could get the omelet poured in, the potato cakes were just right but needed more oil, AND the Cyclist was going on and on about something to do with politics which I was trying to listen to but did not really care to hear or discuss at this particular time. 
About the time I was turning the potato cakes and trying to keep the omelet from burning and randomly saying "uh -huh" as if I was listening closely, he says something to the effect of "Oh, you're making really little ones, huh." 
This did not over well.  I was proud that I pretty politely said "Listen, I cannot deal with doing all of this, and listening to you, AND having you criticize me at the same time" (So for the love of God SHUT UP)  I didn't say that last part, but he must have heard it, because the next words I remember hearing him say were "I'm not saying anything else".    I gave him a big thumbs up on that one and managed to save the (small, apparently!) potato cakes from burning.
We are pretty good at fighting.  Which is to say, we are pretty good at accurately stating the problem and then mulling over how we can compromise on something we can both live with.
This gets easier with age, not least because the list of things you really care about is so much shorter once you reach a certain age.
We were able not only to have a civil discussion about why what he said hit me wrong (It was the pressure!  Everything was going wrong at the same time!!), but when I mentioned a few minutes later that he needed a smaller spatula, he jumped up, grabbed one of the two he had, cut the edges off of it and it worked PERFECTLY.  Again, he was my hero.
I should probably mention that the Cyclist used to tell me to use his "little" spatula, and I had the sad job of informing him that his "little" spatula was in fact a cheese slicer.  It seemed mean to tell him, but downright rude not to.  He now knows the difference, thanks to me. 

So I guess the moral of this story is two-fold.
1) You can have some scrumptious meals at home using imagination instead of money.
2) Sometimes it's a good idea to just be quiet for awhile.

And now, I am going to gargle again and lay back down.
I hope you are warm, and well today.
Play fair.  Be as nice as you can, and if you can't be nice, be honest.
In 4 more weeks it will be March.  We about have this one whipped.  Barring more blizzards, but that goes without saying, right?