Monday, October 27, 2008

Happy Deepavali!

Happy Deepavali! "WTF is Deepavali", you ask? Perhaps you've hear of it as Diwali which was depicted on an episode of The Office in which Michael Scott sings The Diwali Song a la The Hanukkah Song? Here's the song for your enjoyment & click here to find out more about this holiday.

We spent the day going to temple, eating special food (OMG yum!) & lighting oil lamps hubby's parents gave us as part of our wedding gifts that they bought from India. If I would've thought about it I'd have taken a photo of them (they're silver & hand made) but since I didn't, oh well. We should also be setting off fire crackers as part of the celebration like they do in India but I'd rather not have the cops show up at my door.

In other news we're going away the weekend before Thanksgiving to Maine, staying at the same hotel we went to on our mini-moon when we got married back in February. "Grandma & grandpa" (my parents) will babysit the dog; my mom does doggy daycare for me on the nights both Vid & I work late which is great for him. He loves my parents & has 3 playmates: my parents' dog & cat as well as my sister's dog. I'm still on the lookout for cheap airfares for when Vid has his semester break at the end of December but it's nice to know we at least have this small trip to look forward to.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Seeing the future

I went to a "girls night out" last night with a friend I've known since childhood who I haven't seen in about a year; it was nice to reconnect. It was a psychic party & there were about 10 or so of us. We went to a local place my friend has gone to for a while; this was my first experience with this sort of thing. We had munchies & drinks & had 1 lady do past life readings for us everyone could hear while we were waiting to go into 1 of 2 private rooms with tarot readers for 30 minute private sessions.

I honestly don't really believe in past lives but as my hubby is Hindu he was intrigued by the results. Apparently most of us have lots of past lives, but the woman doing the reading asked "The Creator" for a happy one. I ended up on an all women wagon train heading out to California in the last half of the 19th century. We faced lots of stuff (cholera, hostile Indians, etc.) & not everyone made it but I did; I even saved a few lives along the way, including that of a young soldier. I nursed him back to health & over the journey he fell in love with me; I thought he was a nice guy but wasn't overly interested. We arrived in a little stagecoach town where we settled; I was some sort of nurse-midwife & he was a sheriff. Eventually we married & had kids, leading a good life. My name was Cassie. The reader said she thinks I am a traveler across lives, even into this one & that nothing much makes me fearful or at least I'm good at hiding my fears. Very true to both of these!

My tarot reader was a hot sketch. She told me I am dealing with a group of uncooperative people who are holding me back on a goal I worked hard for in the past but is now on the back burner (hello, grad school thesis committee who won't tell me what is up!) & I'm trying to figure out if I stick with it or move onto something else (see a couple of posts previous for my mention of nursing school). She flipped a few more cards & said if I completed my grad work it'd be hard but doable as there is 1 person I can align myself with (the lone person who actually e-mailed me recently). If I did the other thing I could easily do it but it might not give me as much satisfaction as completing the other, but it would be a guarantee of livelihood (exactly; there is a nursing shortage & starting salaries are double what I make now!).

She knew I was married (I always wear my wedding set so it's a dead give away) & told me I don't always appreciate my husband & sometimes he's a bit child-like (true on both) but he really, deeply loves me. She said I was a traveler & open to different ideas, including alternative medicine & I would be traveling again in a couple of months to a new place (see 2 posts prior). I then told her I was a medical anthropologist & she said "Rock on!"; love it!

Here's where it gets interesting: she then said "I don't know if I should tell you this" which freaked me out but I said for her to tell me whatever. She asked if we had kids & I said no. She said she saw a pregnancy happening in the near future & most times when she sees this the person she is talking to is not trying. She said there was some waiting involved (yes; we waited to start trying until hubby had a job) & possibly a scare but everything will turn out fine with the pregnancy for both of us.

After we were done I went back out into the main room & sat around with the other girls having snacks, talking with the past lives reader about how she does what she does, etc. She then out of the blue asked me if I was pregnant; I told her no, but the girl sitting to my left was 18 weeks along. She said she already knew that, but I "have a baby floating around me; it's pink too." I then told her what the tarot reader in the separate room told me. She smiled & said to come back with the sonogram when it happens, which will be soon & to be sure to drink plenty of water "so the seed can grow". She didn't say if the pink meant a girl or not; I guess we'll wait & see with all of this.

Overall, it was a really fun evening. But who knows what the future holds really? We'll soon find out I suppose.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Enjoying nature's bounty

We went apple & pumpkin picking at a local farm yesterday. The weather was perfect & the fruits were perfect for the picking. Vid ate 3 apples off the trees & then proceeded to eat 1/2 a pint of figs we also purchased at the farm. I explained to him how much fiber that was & he was rather unconcerned. This is part of the reason why he is assigned to clean the bathroom. Here are 2 photos of the fun we had:

I am currently baking cookies & making an apple pie from our pickings; I think the pumpkin pie will have to wait until next weekend since I have to get my butt in gear to go back to work tomorrow. I may have had a 4 day weekend but it sure didn't feel like it!

In other news my 21 year old cousin got engaged this weekend. Nothing makes you feel old like hearing the news someone whose diapers you once changed is going to be someone's wife. No date has been set yet but they're thinking sometime in 2010 since she still has 1 year of undergrad left & her intended is currently in the Pennsylvania State Police Academy.

I don't remember if I mentioned it previously or not but Vid's parents are back safe & sound in India. They left last weekend & are still recovering from the jet lag. They had a great time & would like to come back next year. Should the stars align, by this time next year we will (hopefully) have a house with plenty of room for them to stay & perhaps a grandchild for them to fawn over. Hopefully by then they'll also have learned to lay off my single but happy 27 year old sister-in-law ab out getting married.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

I need (another) vacation

Yes, I know we just spent 4 days in fabulous Las Vegas 3 months ago. However, if you did what I currently am forced to do for a living, you'd want to get away more often than not too!

So, Vid has 2 weeks off @ the end of December/beginning of January & I'm planning to take some time off @ that time too. We should be getting interviewed by immigration soon to move things along in his citizenship process. Until then, we can't really make plans since you have to show up when they tell you unless you have a really good excuse, like you're dead.

I've been looking @ airfares; holy shit are they expensive, even to places that are supposedly off season, like Europe. I thought a quick week long jaunt to Paris in winter would mean reasonable airfare but flights from Boston to Paris are $600+ a piece; going to Ireland isn't any better. In either of these places we'd stay with folks we know (a family friend in France, my mom's cousins in Ireland) so at least we wouldn't have to pay for a place to stay (outside of a nice gift as a thank you) so it's not completely out of the question. Maybe we'll get a nice last minute deal since the airlines will be so desperate for business with the economy tanking?

Part of the reason we're doing this (besides wanting to get the hell away for a bit) is we started trying to conceive (TTC) last month so this may be a "babymoon" for us depending on what happens this month. Now that Vid has a stable job & with turning 30 coming up in a few months we agreed to take the plunge into parenthood. Holy shit.

Monday, October 6, 2008

A recipe to share

Here's the recipe for the cookies mentioned in the previous post:

Raisin Drop Cookies
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 & 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cloves
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 cups raisins
Mix wet ingredients first, adding dry ingredients next followed by the raisins last. The cookies seem more fluffy if you leave the milk & eggs @ room temp for an hour or 2 before mixing. Drop mixture from spoon onto lightly greased cookie sheet. Bake at 325 degrees until golden brown. Remove from oven and cool on cookie rack.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Sugar rush!

I can't say October without thinking of the way Arnold Schwarzenegger says it...

I can hardly believe 2008 is almost over; we're in the double digit months now! And thus begins the season that is a dieter's worse nightmare, known as "The Holidays". I can already sense an epic fail on my part. Candy is everywhere, as are baked goods & numerous other delicacies that I could just save time digesting by simply rubbing them on my thighs for the same result. While I have not experienced a turkey coma since going vegetarian in middle school trust me, there's still plenty of ways to overindulge!

Since we are in a new neighborhood, I am unsure about the kids situation on Halloween. There's a sizable playground @ the other end of the street which seems fairly active but I don't know numbers. Do I buy some candy to hand out, which I will have to hide from the hubby since I am certain he will eat a good portion of it even though he was diagnosed with borderline diabetes last fall? And do I trust myself to not mange on the sugar-laden goodness?

One of my biggest candy vices are Reeses PB cups. They are the perfect combination of salt & sweet & I have no problem polishing off a 4 pack. I've tried to sugar free versions & they all suck. The PB in the sugar free is dry & crumbly; it also tastes like they removed some fat & therefore flavor. I appreciate natural PB & the sugar free stuff seems to be missing a lot of oil; I'd go so far as to call Reeses PB cups downright moist compared to the sugar free ones. And while I do enjoy one particular sugar free candy, chocolate coconut candies, they do not cause me to feel the intense euphoria PB cups do.

And because I can't pass up the opportunity to try new sugar-filled recipes at this time of year, I am participating in a cookie swap with some internet friends later this month. I will be baking my mother's famous raisin drop cookies (I will post the recipe when I find the book in one of the few remaining unpacked boxes) for the exchange which are sure to be a hit! They taste so good straight from the oven with a hot beverage!