A Quick Update..Beef Bourguignon laced with Harry Potter and Julia Child
July 31, 2009

 Sorry about no bloggy-mac-blog-blog this week….I’ve been a bad girl. A loyal reader wrote in saying(ok, complaining)…” Please tell Donna to update her Hamilton’s Habitat. Nothing has been posted since 7/24.” Hey, I know that, and I’ve felt guilty every single day, ok? But here’s a quick update…it’s almost news time!

I’m back on another round of antibiotics…no, not for a communicable disease, but for some recurring symptoms of Lyme Disease. But I’m hopeful this will take care of things. I’ll keep you posted.

My daughter was called for her first ever jury duty yesterday. She asked me the night before what time she had to be there….”8:15 am“, I told her. Horrified, she said, “8:15? How on earth do people go to work by then???” Ahhhh, grasshopper…..I told her lots and lots and lots and lots of people, including her Dad, have to be at work  by then…and lots more get to go in even earlier. The fact did not console her… at all. But she made it to the courthouse on time….did get called, but not selected as a juror(SHOCKER)….much relief on her part.

Making seafood paella

Making seafood paella

Let’s see, what else? I made a paella last weekend….found some wild caught shrimp that were really nice at the Supermarket….that were $7.99 a pound! Not bad for shrimp….and I keep a little jar of saffron(the most expensive spice in the world) in the frig, for just such an occasion, because it’s really not easy to find on the fly. I now order it off the internet.

Mmmmm, let’s see…went to yoga class and got my butt kicked Tuesday night…sometimes that instructor seems a little mean, but in a good way. I really felt it the next day, which means it’s a good workout.

And my daughter called this morning…you know, the one who plops roasts into the over without a pan underneath because I didn’t say use a pan…and asked, where one gets “stew meat”. “In the grocery store at the meat counter“, I say levelly.

Does it say stew meat?”

It might but it’s just cut up chunks of beef….why do you need stew meat?

Will ours look like this?

Will ours look like this?

I’m cooking dinner for you! Julia Child’s Beef Bo-erg-ooee-gon!” She’s delighted by the idea. And it is very, very sweet. “Do you mean beef bourguignon?” She does indeed. She has been inspired by the new movie coming out about la Julia, and Mastering the Art of French Cooking was one of the first serious cookbooks I used. I have made the above recipe many, many times. It is excellent…but there are many steps…perhaps too many for my girl? We shall see…the bacon has already been deleted I hear. But it will probably still be delicious….I’ll let you know how it went, but it is an ambitious recipe, as are many of Julia’s recipes. 

And today is J.K. Rowling’s birthday! Maybe we will celebrate by seeing the latest Harry Potter movie on the IMAX, at the Maryland Science Center…that really should rock. And for those of you discouraged about life or your job, or lack of one, remember that J.K. was an unemployed single mom, at rock bottom, which she said she found freeing….because there she was, but still standing. Her Harry Potter series became one of the best selling book series( and movies) of all time. Goes to show you, you just never know, and should never give up. A single idea can turn into great things. Or maybe just a very good beef stew. And tonight, that’s just fine with me. Have a lovely weekend, play nice, and come home safe…we miss you.

I’m a Twilight Freak!!
January 8, 2009

I am ever so slightly embarrassed to admit this, but I am on book two of the Twilight series, by Stephanie Meyer. New Moon,  this one’s called. My daughter received the whole series for Christmas from the lovely Jennifer…and  I was “in between books”…kinda like being in between jobs….it  means you don’t have one.  So, I picked up the first  novel, Twilight, and was ….hooked. For those of you who do not know about Twilight(where have you been?), the movie sensation  has made huge stars of Robert Pattinson and a couple of others, for reasons that are obvious, if you take a look at the clip from behind the scenes…But it’s  based on a 4 book series that the author started, after having a vivid dream one night about an ordinary girl and a sparkly incredibly good-looking vampire in a beautiful meadow. Why don’t I ever have dreams like that?

Interestingly enough, Meyer has never written much before, but wow…she has stumbled into a Harry Potter like pot of vampire gold. I won’t say the books are as intricate or as well written as J.K. Rowling’s books, but they are extremely readable, and the characters really come alive. Truth? I finished the first book in a couple of days…..it was the holidays after all, and now I’m two-third of the way through the second. our heroine Bella, who can be really annoying, it must be said, is now flirting with werewolves. Sorry if I’ve given something away.  And it looks like the second movie New Moon is already in the works….albeit with a different director. Haven’t seen the Twilight film. I’ll netflix it…seeing it in a theatre without a teenage girl in tow might be…odd. You know what I mean.