Tag Archives: chocolate

Sharing My World 79

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Share Your World – April 23, 2018

If you could have an endless supply of any food, what would you get?

Sick.  And very fat.  Assuming I go with my first choice which is chocolate lava cake with real whipped cream.  And the only reason I thought of that is because I saw an Instant Pot recipe for it on Facebook, source of all indispensable information.  Good thing I don’t have a cake pan insert.  Phew.

I also want to say coffee, but that’s not exactly a nutritious staple either, so my final answer is soup.  You can have a mad variety with that one.  I’ve always said I could live quite happily on soup alone forever.  Not sure if it’s true, but it’s a fun thing to say.

List at least five movies or books that cheer you up.

It’s a rare thing for me to watch the same movie twice, but I did it with Bridesmaids.  Twice in a movie theatre and at least twice on Netflix after that.  If that one doesn’t make you laugh out loud more than once then I’m thinking you might need more help than a movie can give you to cheer yourself up.

I also can’t think of any book I’ve picked up to re-read in an attempt to improve my mood.  So I guess I’ll take a fail on this question.

Something I do like to watch though is multiple seasons of tv shows, because that’s like a book or movie that never freaking ends and can keep me up until ungodly hours in the interests of finding out what the heck god forsaken thing happens next.  And although I profess to prefer comedies, I watch a LOT of crime shows.  They’re not all that cheery normally, unless they’re badly done and then they’re hilarious and obviously listed in the wrong category.

If you were a mouse in your house in the evening, what would you see your family doing?

Not much.  So little in fact,  I would not be surprised if the mouse rather quickly passed out from boredom, or left altogether in search of a more stimulating environment.    W watches stuff on his computer.  I watch stuff on my IPad.  We yawn a lot.  We go to bed.  For a bit of excitement we might discuss the weather if it’s being its normal shitty self.  But that just puts us in a bad mood so mostly we skip it. Or he goes on and on about it and I don’t listen.  Yeah that sounds more like it.  Important to get this boring shit right.

What did you appreciate or what made you smile this past week? Feel free to use a quote, a photo, a story, or even a combination.

There was a question a week or two ago – Been anywhere recently for the first time? – and I’m going to answer it now because I actually did leave my house for an extended period of time.  We are talking hours.  Holy.   Imagine living here for so many years without ever visiting these two places –

Muttart Conservatory and the Art Gallery of Alberta.  I greatly appreciate Son and Daughter-in-law and grandkids who took me to see these places because they were both lovely.  Kind of makes me wonder what else there is that I haven’t been paying attention to in this city.

Then of course there’s my new books which I’ve mentioned already, pictured above.  I had to scrounge up a bedside lamp to start reading ( in bed, my favourite place to read), having forgotten that real books don’t light up in the dark.

Hope your world is also filled with wondrously magical things worth sharing. Oh, did I say “also”?  Okay I did, so I must have meant to, right?  Right.  More equally thrilling stuff to come I have no doubt.  Even though you might.

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Sharing My World 36

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It’s a black and white world out there today….

Share Your World 2015 Week  43

If you were on a debate team, what general subject would you relish debating?

If I were on a debate team, the rest of the team would kick me off.  I do not relish debating of any kind.  I don’t like to listen to people argue and it makes me uncomfortable when opposing views lead to heated exchanges.  I am blessed/cursed with being able to see both sides of the story.  This is not to say I don’t have informed (and in some cases no doubt misguided) opinions about things, but I rarely feel the need to shove my beliefs down someone else’s throat.  I am the peacekeeper, planted firmly on the fence.

What’s your strongest sense?

Well it sure isn’t my hearing.  Another reason why debating is not my thing.  I would misinterpret the arguments and call the opposite side idiots.  I don’t think you get points for that.

My sense of smell is pretty good.  Especially if something is burning, I’m likely to notice it before anyone else does.

What would you name the autobiography of your life?

Blessed and Cursed:  My Life on the Fence

List your favorite flavors or types of tea.

I don’t like to be all negative in a post, but I hate tea even more than I hate debating.  It doesn’t matter how you try to dress it up with different flavours, it’s still tea.  I quite like teapots though.  Not everything about tea is bad.

Bonus question: What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

I am grateful for my appointment with the Primary Care nurse and for all the information and advice she gave me about diabetes.  She drew on a white board with dry erase markers (this appealed to the artist in me I guess) pictures of the liver, the pancreas, and a big fat blood cell or artery or something.  Glucose was represented by little red X’s and insulin by little green triangles.  Then there were many arrows pointing in every which direction.  Now I understand why my fasting blood sugar readings are consistently high in the morning even though I have not been sleep walking/eating during the night.

Activity and weight loss are the magic words here, along with the medication which is supposed to make my liver and pancreas less confused.  The nurse had more medically relevant terminology for the process.  I am really starting to enjoy my walks now, since they involve less huffing and puffing and gasping and cursing under my breath.  Or lack thereof.  And I have changed my eating habits so that I eat all three meals and two snacks, so it feels like I’m doing nothing but eating all day long.  This makes not eating anything after 6:00 p.m. a piece of cake.  So to speak.

W has his hip surgery next week.  Both of us will be grateful to have that behind us.

Oh yeah….Halloween is tomorrow.  W bought enough mini chocolate bars to last us for the next six Halloween nights.  He says it is because he hates to run out, although I’m not sure how he knows what that feels like because we NEVER run out.  Ever.

Amazingly enough I have not been tempted by them.  My taste buds are not grateful for that, but I’m pretty sure my liver is.

Happy Halloween (in case I don’t make it back here tomorrow to say that).   Hope you’ve had a great week.

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Sharing My World 32

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My gorgeous Tiger Lilies which continue to grow and bloom year after year despite this summers bone dry heat and my constant sad neglect.

Share Your World – 2015 Week #28

But first….(because I have also sadly neglected to share my world for several weeks…)

Questions from week 26
In a car would you rather drive or be a passenger?

The only car accident I ever was in happened when someone else was driving, so I don’t like the feeling of having no control in a vehicle.  But when I’m driving I also don’t like to have my attention divided by conversation and radio noise and signs and scenery, especially if I’m not familiar with my route.  Although in that case I suppose the signs might be useful.  Lately I seem to never know exactly where I’m going.  My plans could change en route.  There’s a reason why old people should just bow out gracefully and let someone else take the wheel.  As long as it’s not by someone else who is just as old and confused.  And before you leave it might be a good idea to write down where you’re headed just in case.

If you were handed free opera tickets, would you go or sell them? Why?

I would go!  I’ve never been to a live opera performance.  I think it would be amazing.

Describe your own outlook on life in seven words or less. (NOTE: does not necessarily have to be a sentence.)

We make our own heaven or hell.  I would also like to add “right here on earth” but that’s too many words. So just think it in your head.

Which would you prefer: a wild, turbulent life filled with joy, sorrow, passion, and adventure–intoxicating successes and stunning setbacks; or a contented bordering on happy, secure, predictable life surrounded by friends and family without such wide swings of fortune and mood?

No wild swinging turbulence for me thanks.  My heart can’t take it.  I would opt for contented and secure.  Yes, I am exactly that boring.

Questions from week 27

What is your favorite month of the year?

There are things I like and dislike about all of them.  The dislike mostly has to do with taxes and insurance premiums coming due and nasty bad weather.  The good things are birthdays and anniversaries and holidays and pleasantly good weather.  January is generally a pain in the ass.  I can’t think of anything bad to say about September.

Do you drink coffee at all?

Yes I do.  Every day.  This summer I am probably going to single-handedly wear out my Tasimo coffee maker.  In which case I will invest in a Keurig.  I hear they’re better.

What was one of your first moneymaking jobs (other than babysitting or newspaper delivery)?

I worked as a waitress at a beach café.  Everyone should work as wait staff at least once in their lives.  This would make for more polite patrons and much more generous tipping.

List:  If you play video/computer games list 5 games you like.

Hay Day, Candy Crush, Words With Friends, Unblock Me and Spider Solitaire.  Wow.  Clearly I have no life.

Questions from week 28

What is your favorite comfort snack food?

This is probably where you’re supposed to say chocolate and not something weird like dill pickles.  Yesterday I ate tuna salad with tortilla chips.  I really don’t have a favorite.  It depends on the month and the weather.  This month there’s a lot less frozen fudge bars in the universe thanks to me.

If you had to spend one weekend alone in a single store but could remove nothing, which store would you pick? (except food or beverage)

Good gawd, an entire weekend?  My first thought was to pick a furniture store with beds in it.  However, I reconsidered and came up with Michael’s where I would create many works of art and leave them lying around with price tags on them.

What was the largest city you have been to?  What is the one thing you remember most?

After googling a list of the worlds largest cities I decided to choose London mostly because I have never been anywhere else on the list.  I thought Athens was really big, but apparently geography is not one of my life skills.  What I remember most about London is travelling around on the top deck of a tourist-y red bus snapping photos like a mad woman.  I saw it all through a camera lens!  The Tower of London, the London Eye, Buckingham Palace, the Tower Bridge, Big Ben – how in the world do you pick just one out of all those amazing things?  I remember being there with my sister.  That was the best part.

Finish this sentence:  It has recently come to my attention that ….

…..there are already almost 800 words in this post.  It’s time to do something else.  But before I shut up, I would like to tell you how wonderful the weather is today!  It is cloudy and overcast and the hot blazing sun is nowhere to be seen.  This is such a relief after the crazy heat wave and smoky air from all the wildfires in our province.  There was a lovely thunder-storm last night complete with pouring rain.  So it’s official, July 13th is my favourite weather day of the year so far.  My grass still looks dead, but now at least it is dead and wet and not looking so much like it might suddenly burst into flames. 

Hope you’re having an amazing start to an unbelievable week in this incredibly marvelous month!

Whew.  Might also be time to cut back on the coffee and sugary snacks for a bit.

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Sharing My World 13

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The names of my grandchildren in scrabble letters! The perfect gift from a gifted grand-daughter.

Share Your World 2014 Week 51

Would you prefer snowy winters, or not, and why?

You get what you get, depending on where you choose to live I suppose.  When we lived in the Arctic above the tree line, the winters were long and dark and frozen solid.  So living way down south in the middle of Alberta (which is way up north to many people) seems balmy in comparison.  I have never liked the snow and the cold, but a winter without any snow at all would probably seem weird.  So far this year we haven’t had too much of the white stuff, but now that I’ve said that we’ll get royally dumped on.  No worries, I don’t have to go out in it or shovel it or even look at it if I don’t want to.  That’s what spouses with snow blowers are for.  And snow always eventually goes away.  That’s the part about it I like the best.

So, you’re on your way out and it’s raining. Do you know where your umbrella is or do you frantically search for it all over your apartment/house?

Usually my umbrella is in a basket on the shelf above the coats.  If it’s not there, it’s in my car from the last time I used it and didn’t bring it back in to the house.  It used to get left at work all the time if it was raining when I left to go there and not raining at home time.  No matter where it might be, there will be no frantic searching.  Coats are made with hoods for a reason.  I like the rain.  It doesn’t rain enough here.

Do you prefer your food separated or mixed together?

I don’t really care.  Either way, it’s purpose is to satisfy hunger and supply nourishment.  Sometimes I feel like I’m living in the Hunger Games city of Panem where food is so plentiful we forget it’s not there purely for our entertainment.  We play with fashion and we play with food while there are people in the world who are going without proper clothes or food or shelter,  and who must look at us and question our priorities and our sanity in the grand scheme of things.  A starving child isn’t concerned about the presentation or the proper utensils.  Or what to do with the annoying cereal dust at the bottom of the Cheerios box.

What is set as the background on your computer?

Well, funny you should ask.  I just changed it yesterday.  I was tired of looking at this elephant.

The-beautiful-elephant-sunsetAnd now I am looking at this, where they should also have mentioned coffee and chocolate.

winter books

 

Bonus question: What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

I am grateful for the best Christmas yet (every one is the best ever – funny how they just keep getting better…) with all the grandchildren and sons and daughters and dogs.  It was relaxing and delicious.  I shared a bedroom with W, so I had to either learn how to use ear plugs or live with sleep deprivation.  I chose the former.  When he snores, the walls go in and out, I swear, and you can’t hear planes flying overhead.  Now I know what to expect when what’s left of my hearing finally goes.  It was kind of nice in a way, getting up and wandering around and having no idea at all how much noise I might be making.

This week I’m looking forward to New Years Eve and maybe actually making it to midnight with my eyes open!  That seems like a reasonable goal and one that I won’t be too sorry about if (as usual) I don’t make it.

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Lord Love a Duck

IMG_1500.JPG (2)Yes, this is a picture of a big ass chocolate bar.  It was the most exciting thing that happened to me yesterday.  I had adjusted and dispensed glasses to a little old lady (she was way older than me, by at least 10 years) and as she got up to leave she asked me if I liked chocolate.  I said yes.  Dark chocolate?  Yes.  She whipped this monstrous thing out of her bag and told me to enjoy it with the rest of the girls who helped her pick out her glasses and to have a nice day.  Just being called a ‘girl’ would have been enough to make the day nice.

But look at that thing.  It is for sure my kind of gratuity.  Normally we get nothing (which is what we expect even though we’re awesome) and sometimes we get coffee or a handful of change to put in our coffee fund.  This is the equivalent amount of chocolate found in about a dozen normal size bars.  I ate four squares of it and felt sick.

As interesting as all this is, hang on, because I’ve got something even better.

In my backyard this morning in the rain I spied a creature.  That’s about as specific as I could be without my glasses.  It looked like a bird, maybe a young Canada Goose.

008I really need to clean this window before I take any more pictures through it.  This is the last of our dirty snow pile still refusing to give up.  And with glasses on and the zoom on my phone, look at this!

005It’s a mallard duck with his very-hard-to-see mate just behind him.  Both of them mucking about in the rain, like this is the wetlands or something.  I was going to wake W up so he could get all excited about my remarkable avian identification skills involving a bird that wasn’t a blue jay or a cardinal, but then I remembered he used to be a migratory birds expert and seeing a duck might not be the highlight of his morning.  I imagined him being grumpy and unimpressed, or worse, spewing out a hundred duck related facts off the top of his head.  I let him sleep.

The ducks may have been attracted to all the spilled birdseed under our tree, or the gigantic puddle in our neighbor’s backyard caused from all the run off of the melting snow.  He’s been pumping it periodically to keep it from turning into a big mud hole, and now all the rain makes it look like he hasn’t done a thing.  I watched the ducks putter around for a bit, and then they waddled under the fence to the other side to play in the water.  It was such a simple thing, and yet so odd and unexpected that it felt amazing.  What an excellent way to start the day.

Just when you think it’s all about chocolate, life gives you ducks.

The Luxury of Choice

“Everyone has choices to make; no one has the right to take those choices away from us. Not even out of love..”  Cassandra Clare, City of Ashes

Vanilla, chocolate, or something else entirely? (Daily Prompt: 32 Flavors)  Yay, an ice cream question!  But it could just as easily be saying – Black or White, Right or Wrong, or a million shades of grey?

I am thirty-two flavors and then some
I am thirty-two flavors and then some (Photo credit: harry harris)

The minute we open our eyes in the morning we’re faced with choices – simple, complicated, life defining, meaningless.  Sometimes we think we don’t have a choice, but that just means we’ve already made up our mind about whatever it is.  And that’s our choice.  Other times the shere number of choices available is overwhelming and paralysing, so we cross our fingers, close our eyes and point, hoping for the best.

On the grand decision-making scale, which starts at wishy-washy and goes all the way to carved in stone, I like to think of myself as being somewhere in the middle with a fair and open mind.  (Hey, it’s my choice to believe whatever I want about myself, even if I’m wrong,  right?)  But I do think it’s important to listen to more than one side of a story, to consider sources, and to respect the choices that other people make.  None of us that I know of has reached the point in life where there is nothing left for us to learn.

I once read off all the flavours listed on the board at a Baskin-Robbins store at the request of my then five year old daughter so that she could decide what kind she wanted.    I thought she might choose oreo cookies and cream, pink bubblegum, rainbow, strawberry shortcake or cotton candy.  She was a little girl in love with hot pink, lime green, every shade of purple, and eating drink crystals directly from the package.  But what do mothers really know?  Not everything, that’s for sure.  Except it’s a given that their kids will constantly surprise them.  When I finished reading the long list I was prepared to make a shorter one to help her decide, but she only needed to hear it once.  I’ll just have vanilla, she told me.  (Really?  That’s the perfectly white ice cream with nothing in it, you know.)  I know, that’s the one I want.  And so that’s the one she got.

Baskin-Robbins Baseball Nut Ice Cream
Baskin-Robbins Baseball Nut Ice Cream

I suspect it was the one she knew she would be getting in the first place, and the recital of the ice cream flavour list was merely to satisfy her curiosity as to what else was out there.   Or purely to make her mother do something time-consuming and ultimately useless in the name of love.  Now she’s much more an adult of the “something else entirely” genre.  But still making her own informed choices and living with them.  It’s all any of us really want for ourselves.  My own ice cream choice has always been boringly predictable – chocolate in some form or other;  fudge brownie, jamoca almond fudge, tin roof, rocky road.   It’s lovely to have some chocolate choices, but it’s all still chocolate at the end of the day.

What a luxury it is for us, to live in a world where there are so many choices and where we are free to do what we want to do, and be who we want to be.  Even when there are limits imposed, no one can tell us how we must react, or make us feel any way other than how we ultimately choose to feel.  Maybe one of these days I’ll go way out on a limb and try baseball nut. or lemon custard.  Or maybe  I won’t.  It’s my choice.  And how wonderful it is to be able to make it.

Just in Case You Really Want to Know….

…..And even if you don’t.  I’m falling way behind on my Plinky Inspired Answers to Inane Questions Which Are Reallly Just a Lame Excuse to Talk About Myself Ad Nauseum.  So I’ll just get at ‘er.

Share something you’ve changed your mind about.  I change my mind about inconsequential things roughly every 30 seconds, so my answer to this prompt would be interesting only if I’d ever had a complete change of heart about something earth shatteringly important.  Like global warming or the economy or celebrity nose rings.  I prefer to hover somewhere in the middle when it comes to such weighty issues, looking at both sides of the story and not ever actually making up my mind at all.

What do you think of reality television?  I think it’s about as real as anything else that’s written and scripted and edited to death before it goes on the air.

What’s the most unexpected thing a stranger has ever said to you?  So, not just strange, weird, rude, crazy, incomprehensible, far out or completely ludicrous?   Merely unexpected.  That certainly narrows it down.  Well there was this one old guy at work who came in and sat down and proceded to tell me that I had always given him the most incredible customer service and he really appreciated it and he’d bring all his business to me because I was one of the nicest most knowledgeable opticians he’d ever come across.  I have no idea who he was, and strongly suspect he got me mixed up with somebody else.

Come up with an idea for an awesome prank.  “Awesome Prank” is an oxymoron.  Pranks are rarely awesome.  I would describe them as mostly idiotic, moronic, and pointless.

Could you pull off a different hair color?  I guess that depends on what exactly I’d be trying to pull off or accomplish by changing it.  Jet black or green or flaming orange (orange is in this season!  I read that somewhere, but I don’t think they were talking about hair color),  would probably capture a lot of attention, most of it negative.  My current natural hair color, which is salt and pepper (heavy on the salt) seems to go well with the rest of me right now, so why mess with that.

Milk, dark, or white chocolate?  A question that’s not really a question.  Like “window, middle or aisle?”  Just pick one and get on with your life.  I’m not sure why, but for me, white chocolate easter bunnies just feel wrong.  As do chocolate easter tractors and soccer balls.  Bars and cakes, on the other hand, no matter what time of year, feel right and normal.  Dark chocolate can be bitter, and white chocolate too sweet.  Milk chocolate is okay, but I’d rather have chocolate milk.  With a straw. Out of a little brown carton.

Describe what it feels like when the season begins to change.  Could you not just haul your dumb ass outside and find that out for yourself?  Sorry, but sometimes you just have to say dumb ass or you’ll explode.

If you could be an editor for any magazine, which would you choose?  Magazines are so full of glossy eye blinding advertisements that I can’t be bothered trying to search out the articles.  Half the time it’s impossible even to come across a table of contents.  Editing out the ads would probably not make good business sense, so I’m quite content to leave the editor’s job to somebody else and all those over priced floppy books full of ads on the shelves.

When you need a good laugh, who/what do you turn to?  The Dilbert comic strips and Savage Chickens come to mind.  Yesterday I went to Chapters to get in on their “buy 4 get one free” book deal and picked up “I’m Better Than Your Kids” by Maddox and I’ve been laughing ever since.  It is definitely not everyone’s idea of funny though.  I read a couple of pages out of it to W and his face remained set in stone.

What game are you the champion of? Angry Birds, but only in my own mind. I work on getting all the stars and try not to look at any one else’s stats and get discouraged that there are people out there who are better at blowing up pigs than I am.

Would you ever take a cruise?  Maybe a river cruise would be okay, but for one on the ocean I think I might have to be heavily medicated the entire time.  I don’t like the idea of all that deep water everywhere.  Having never been on any kind of cruise I suppose it’s not fair for me to judge but my uninformed opinion is that sitting around on dry land would be a lot more fun.

Caramelo Caramella

Who can take a sunrise, sprinkle it with dew

Cover it with chocolate and a miracle or two…

Who can take a rainbow, wrap it in a sigh

Soak it in the sun and make a groovy lemon pie…

Who can take tomorrow, dip it in a dream

Separate the sorrow and collect up all the cream…

(Candyman lyrics)

I’m pretty sure I could give up both Hallowe’en and Easter candy and still live happily ever after. Not saying I’m averse to the whole idea of candy in general. If Willy Wonka asked me to help out in his chocolate factory I would not turn him down. I just don’t have much of a sweet tooth I guess.

A big rich dessert kind of ruins a good meal for me. You know the kind, where you go from feeling full and satisfied to completely fat and disgusting in five minutes or less.

But it’s no secret that there are a myriad of things you can cover with chocolate and I have yet to meet one of those that I didn’t like. Brookside Dark Chocolate Blueberries and Accai and Pomegranates come to mind. The dark chocolate is GOOD FOR YOU, never mind that the fruit part of it is concentrated and dried and saturated with sugar.

I wonder why we can’t celebrate some holiday or other with salty pretzels and sour cream and onion potato chips. Start giving out trail mix for Hallowe’en and have corn nut hunts at Easter. Surprisingly enough, I have these kinds of brilliant ideas all the time, and they never catch on.

Oh well. Good thing chocolate isn’t holiday specific. That would be a hard one to give up completely.

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Valentine’s Day Thoughts

“To-morrow is Saint Valentine’s day,
All in the morning betime,
And I a maid at your window,
To be your Valentine.
Then up he rose, and donn’d his clothes,
And dupp’d the chamber-door;
Let in the maid, that out a maid
Never departed more. “

—William Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act IV, Scene 5

So yeah. And we all know what finally happened to Ophelia.

How do I feel about Valentine’s Day? Indifferent, actually. It’s like secretary’s day, or groundhog day, or national tooth fairy day. Slightly amusing, but ultimately unneccessary.

Great for people who are unable to dream up their own superfluous reasons for sending flowers and purchasing greeting cards and giant stuffed bears, I guess.

Or, you know, if you need another reason to eat chocolate,  it works for that.