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» Saturday, September 22, 2018Not the Fall I Was Expecting
Apparently summer forgot about itself through August and then only remembered this month that it was supposed to be hot. So up until the equinox tonight, it's been 90°F or over. I remember last year, with its 70s on Yellow Daisy weekend, with more fondness than ever.
James' mom had called up a few weeks ago and said they would like to come up for the day one Saturday to see us. We haven't seen them in four forevers. We'd intended to go after Christmas, and then came the truck accident, and once that was over James was having other troubles, and then came the hospital siege. Well, cool. James understood it to be the 29th, so we were making plans for that.
Except Mom called last night and asked if we were still on for today. Ooops. So we set to work tidying the kitchen last night and I made sure the hall bath was still clean and gave it a nice wipeover with a Lysol cloth. We had talked about making one of the casserole dish kits we had bought at Yellow Daisy last year, but for that we would need cooked chicken and some cream cheese. We had the big package of thighs I'd bought at Nam Dae Mun on Friday, though, and we could have done those in cream of mushroom soup with a cucumber salad on the side. But James wanted to try something different, so we skipped breakfast this morning and ran over to Publix to get the two ingredients, and, since we were there, get the rest of the BOGOs. Unfortunately they only had lemon pepper or "mojo" flavor (I'm sure that means it's spicy) rotisserie chickens. We didn't have time to go to another store, so we got a lemon pepper and James said he'd make sure not to include the skin in the casserole. (I despise pepper. I don't understand how you can taste the goodness of the food when your mouth is on fire.)
We expected Mom and Candy about noon, so we were surprised and dismayed to see that they'd arrived when we got home and we weren't there to greet them. I hadn't even had a chance to run the vacuum cleaner over the carpet, or get James' magazines and books off the ottoman of the rocking chair. James just plunked the pile down on the hearth so everyone could sit.) We chatted a few minutes before starting lunch.
This was okay. James put onions and celery and mushrooms instead of green beans, which made a casserole more palatable. I like plain food, really: a meat, a starch, a veg. Sometimes it tastes good with a gravy (turkey, or chicken thighs, or the meat in spaghetti sauce or the barbecue wings I made last night), but I really like to taste all the flavors individually most of the time. So casseroles are really not my thing. But it did have a nice flavor, except that you could still taste the pepper from the rotisserie chicken even with the skin off. Couldn't be helped. We still had the cucumber salad, and baby carrots that Mom and Candy brought that I steamed and put maple syrup glaze on.
Dessert was something James picked up at Publix, a cinnamon "babka," flaky pastry folded in with cinnamon and sugar, with no "ick" (icing sugar) on or in it. It was wonderful, flaky and not overly sweet; we ate the entire thing.
We also had presents, since we had never "done" Christmas. We got them a basket of unique foods from various farmers markets: a mix from Nora Mills, specialty jams, some of the sweet onion relish, glazes, etc. There was also Candy's birthday gift: a book and an Eeyore ornament. James got a biplane made of Coca-Cola cans and they had bought me the tray and the mugs with the Christmas dogs design I saw last year at Pier One, but couldn't afford to buy. That was so cool!
Just talked the rest of the time and about 5:30 they decided it was time to hit the road so they could get home before dark. Mom got up and cut through the space between the sofa and the lamp—we usually avoid this because it's a narrow space—and I guess she tripped on the base of the floor lamp. Next thing we knew she was on the floor. She had not hit her head, but scraped her elbow on the carpet and had a big bruise already coming up on her right knee. Well, she's over eighty, and getting up isn't so easy anymore. We tried several different ways to help her up, and I thought James and I together might have been able to get her to her feet, but Candy was afraid if James hurt something, they wouldn't let him have his surgery. So I finally called 911, and while she was sitting on the floor, I cleaned and bandaged the little scrape on her elbow and got a bag of ice for the swollen spot. Three nice firefighters showed up and they had her up on her feet in less than a second (the head guy told her to put her feet on his and then they just swung her to her feet).
So they left a little later than expected, with a fresh ice bag, and I was making buttons most of the night until we found out they were home and safe.