Tuesday, December 7, 2010

What a Beginning . . .

Do you suppose it means I'm just overly tired, or losing my mind?  Yes.  This morning after standing under the wonderfully warm water spray of the shower I grabbed the shampoo bottle and promptly washed my face.  Then I realized my mistake and took it on up to the top of my head and washed my hair as well.  My usual routine is to wash my face with my face cleanser, not shampoo.  I almost panicked, fearing that my eyelashes would lose their curl--what little there is--because I was using a shampoo that is supposed to reduce/relax the natural curl in one's hair.  I don't know why I was worried.  It hasn't prevented the dippsie doodle waves that have been plaguing me for several months now.

I've always been so proud of my hair for cooperating so beautifully--up until recently.  It's begun this maddening tendency to do "S" waves here and there, but especially right around my face and it bugs me to no end.  I'm not, after all, living in the 1920's, for Pete's sake!  (Give me nine or ten more years and I'll be a full century off!)

As I continued with my shower and thinking of stinking "S" curves on female heads, I remembered Miss Phoebe Whiting from my 7th grade Home Ec Cooking class.  Back in 1961-62.  At first, I and my classmates had difficulty knowing what to do about Miss Whiting.  She had an austere demeanor and looked like someone from an old Victorian movie.  She was probably my current age--early 60's--and dressed with high collars, (I remember some filigree white ones)  long sleeves, mid-calf or slightly longer skirted dresses with fitted bodices and often with belts--maybe?  I think I remember her wearing a watch pinned on her bodice, but don't quote me on that.  Her hair was dyed black and worn in a bun at the nape of her neck ... and she had "S" curve waves (flat around her face) on either side of a middle part. 

She was a large woman and had obvious jowls, which were carefully painted (along with the rest of her face) in a foundation lighter than her apparent more olive complexion.  Her eyebrows were black and I think penciled in a bit of a half-moon shape over each eye.  Little pink circles of rouge dotted each cheek.  Her mouth was one of those little rose-bud kind, painted a dark red.  Her hands and feet were tiny and disproportionate with the rest of her body.  Her black shoes were of the previous era as well.  They were laced up to her ankles, and had a one or one-and-a-half inch solid heel.  (Some of today's shoes aren't too far off.)

She was very precise in her directions and I don't ever remember her raising her voice--even working with a classroom of giggly 12-13 year-olds.  She loved sweets and rich foods.  I still remember some of the recipes we made the 1/2 year I was in her class.  Oh, she also love canned, evaporated milk and we used it in every possible recipe we could.  We made chocolate pudding, from scratch.  (Actually all our recipes from scratch!)  Tomato soup, Welsh Rarebit, and Rice Krispi Treats.  So THAT'S where my love affair with Rice Krispi treats began!  (She told us that when we were mothers and our children didn't want to eat their cereal, we could sweeten it up with the marshmallow/butter coating to make it more appetizing!  We all dropped our jaws on that one!)  I don't remember other recipes, but I do remember having fun.  After getting to know her better, I came to love her.  She commanded respect, but did have a sense of humor and she was kind.  She's one of four teachers I fondly remember, and only one of two that I remember first and last names of.

I'm grateful to have known Miss Phoebe.  I'd been cooking for about four years before being in her class, but I learned some things from her.  And I'm glad for the memories.  Even with my kind memories of Miss Phoebe, I still don't want my hair to do "S" curves around my face. 

And even though I shampooed my face today, I didn't note any appreciable change in the curvature of my eyelashes--or anything else.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

A Couple Things. And a Couple More.

First and foremost:  I'm not dead.  Yet.  Hear loud celebratory noises.  Yes?  No? Okay.  It's good for me, if not for anyone else!  Perhaps God still thinks I have work to do.  (Read:  I still have time to repent and straighten up!)  That's a good thing!

We've been dealing with what lots of others have at this time of year:  Hot days (in the 80 degree range) followed shortly thereafter with cold days (as in it was 29 degrees this fine morning when I got out of bed.)  Hence and therefore, most of us in this household have struggled with varying degrees of misery due to  head colds/sinus infections/allergies/ear infections/bronchitis--any combination of which is so pleasant, if not downright debilitating.  I'll not plague (cough, cough) you with whom had what and when, because we've had what so many others have had and still have.  (Occasionally we seem like the walking dead but seem far more grouchy, you know.)  Thank Heaven, the FLU seems to have missed us.  That dreaded miserable stuff.  (Knock on wood.)  And somehow, I'm not grieved by that fact.  Imagine!

So, now on my second antibiotic (the first was no picnic and only seemed to "take the edge off", and this far more expensive one (I thought of explaining that this newest antibiotic is over a130 times more expensive than the last, but then I remembered a foundational rule about multiplication:  zero multiplied 130 times still equals zero.  Oh well!)  had better do the trick!  I have many things to do!!!  I have high hopes of having energy, well-being, etc. to proceed with the hundred tasks my list is growing to for this fine month of December.  I'm very hopeful, if nothing else, of getting the house CLEAN and decorated for the coming of Christmas--with all children and grandchildren in attendance!  Yes.  Little Baby Cakes will be here to bless us for her first ever Christmas celebration, and maybe a slightly early First Birthday celebration, as well!  Much to do.  Much to do.

Our recent Thanksgiving celebration was wonderful. It was not fancy, but all in attendance, including small grandchildren, contributed to either cooking dishes of goodies, preparing the dining table for eating and/or cleaning up after the celebration of feasting took place.  I was so exhausted after all that cooking (my portion), and eating  (Yes.  I did eat too much, thank you.) that I went to bed for a 2 hour nap, and left the cleaning up/storing left-over goodies to everyone else!  One of the more-or-less wanted (more less, I think) I think I've gained back the 5 pounds I lost from the recent surgery/hospital stay back in October.  Oh, darn it!  (To quote one of Little Britches' more favored expressions to express his displeasure.)  And I just bought a new pair of size 8 jeans! Darn it!  Again.

One day--whenever I get on top of everything else--(I'm full of faith that I will, one day, be on top of everything.  Well, okay.  When I'm to a point of deciding that everything else can be put on hold, once more. while I blog a little.)  I plan to post a recipe I made a couple of weeks ago:  Mexican Black Bean Soup.  I don't think I've included it here previously, but with the way my mind works . . . it could be a duplicate.  Hope you all have a great holiday month, and a great Christmas celebration at your house!