Saturday, July 12, 2014

He STILL really loves pizza

Yesterday afternoon my nephew and I went to The Taste of Chicago for the second year in a row. I think he had a good time.

Like last year, he concentrated on pizza. He compared and contrasted slices from two different vendors and then returned to his favorite for a third slice. He also had fudge and an Oreo Smoosh from Eli's (that's cheesecake topped with vanilla ice cream and chocolate sauce). I tried to get him to try something new -- specifically Mac-and-Cheetos, pasta shells in cheese sauce covered by Cheetos. But he rejected the new dish because of "the green stuff." Yes, they sprinkled scallions on top and it was enough to turn him off. He is a purist.

I'm more adventuresome. I had peach cobbler (my old favorite), a crab cake, a chocolate covered banana and (new this year) an enormous barbecued turkey leg. The latter was so big that I had a turkey sandwich for lunch this afternoon.

We had beautiful weather (sunny and about 80ยบ) and I really enjoyed talking to him. My nephew is an interesting kid. Very smart. Rather geeky. His favorite topics of conversation were Brazil's meltdown in the World Cup and anti-jokes (jokes which are deliberately not funny). His favorite anti-joke: A horse walked into a bar. Several patrons left because they spotted the potential danger in the situation.

He's 14 now. I wonder how much longer he'll actually look forward to spending a summer afternoon with his old auntie.

July Journaling Challenge

Day 12 -- Grateful

Oh, I'm grateful for a lot. I'll just go with what's top of mind today:

I'm grateful that I am able to get/receive love and affection from animals. It's a gift I inherited from my mom. I understand dogs and cats so well, and I get so much enjoyment from my relationship with my furry friends.

This morning I took Connie to her first visit to her new vet. In addition to feline viral rhinotracheitis -- an incurable infection that means she will always be plagued with excessive and often icky eye secretions -- he discovered that two of her teeny, tiny front teeth are gone. Connie belonged to a hoarder, a woman who had at least six cats in a small apartment, and probably spent her kitten/early adult period eating a cheap and inappropriate diet.

I am grateful that I was able to rescue her, and that from now on she will get the care she deserves -- a nutritious diet and medication for her eyes. (Note I said "deserves," not "wants;" she really hates the eye drops.) I am grateful that doing this comes to naturally to me and that I get such pleasure from it. Cats bring a bit of nature indoors, and I learn so much from having them around.

Saturday 9 -- Already Gone

1) Eagles lead singer Glenn Frey proclaims that he's "feeling strong." How would you describe yourself this fine Saturday? I'm fine. I'm just really annoyed by the angry red zit on my chin. HOW MUCH LONGER WILL I HAVE TO DEAL WITH ZITS?

2) The song begins with a rumor: "I heard some people talking just the other other day ..." Have you heard anything juicy/interesting lately? Please share! My nephew shared with me that his mom (my kid sister) wants to her family to celebrate her 25th wedding anniversary in California and that they'll stay with (gulp) our older sister. Our older sister is a stone bitch. This is not going to go well. I'm glad I'm just sitting in the stands, munching on popcorn and watching this one. I'm not in this family drama.

3) When "Already Gone" was popular, the news was dominated by Richard Nixon and the Watergate scandal. What do you consider today's top news story? Castro and Rizzo representing my Cubs on the All Star squad.

4) In the 1970s, Eagles Glenn Frey and Don Henley were at the center of a social circle of very creative people, including singer Linda Ronstadt, singer-songwriter Jackson Browne and actor-comedian Steve Martin. How do you express your creativity? I write. I'm a writer by trade.
5) Even though they broke up in 1980, the Eagles are currently on a reunion tour, and after knowing each other more than 40 years, Frey and Henley still consider each other friends. What quality to do you value most in a friendship?  Can you make me laugh? Will you be there for me? In exchange, I promise I'll make you laugh and I'll always be there for you.

6) Are there any mirrors in the room you're in right now?  No. Which is fine because of the aforementioned zit.

7) What's the last beverage you drank with ice?   I don't remember exactly but I'm sure it was Coke.

8) Whole, skim, 2%, half-and-half, almond or soy ... what kind of milk is in your refrigerator right now?  2%

9) Sam likes to mix sliced almonds into her salad. What do you think makes a good salad?   Raisins. I like that unexpected touch of sweet amid all the vegetables.


July Journaling Challenge

Day 11 -- Favorite Outfit

Cardigan or jacket over a tee and a pair of dark wash jeans. I wish I could wear shoes like this model's, but alas, my high heeled days are behind me.

I love this because it's comfortable and appropriate everywhere. I wear something like this to church, to the theater and to meetings, if the client is visiting us. (I'll swap out black slacks if I'm going to a funeral, wedding or onsite to my client's offices.)