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likely I've survived another year...

For my impending birthday, Z got me The Science of Good Cooking.  I'm about 200 pages in (reading the tips and explanations and just skimming the rest).  Good stuff.  My only complaint - and I knew this when I put the book on my wishlist - is that over half of the book is devoted to meat and eggs.  The same is true of America's Test Kitchen in general.  Which is fine:  it's good to know how to make the most of meat, and eggs are little science-labs-in-shells that deserve extra attention.  There are some bean, veg., and grain tips in the upcoming chapters:  these are foods that also deserve to be studied scientifically and treated well.  The other very tiny complaint is that when they talk about low&slow cooking, they don't mention the crock pot; this is something ATC has remedied in more recent television shows.

Anyway, I am pleased with the book.  The next time I make deviled eggs, I will set the egg carton on its side the day before.  I'm very curious about the cold-oil method for making homemade french fries - apparently they soak up less oil that way....

For the project at work...we in the trenches have very nearly done all we can to try and avert disaster pre-launch.  It's deeply disheartening to have good - or even seemingly-crucial - ideas dismissed or ignored, but one can only do so much hopping up and down, waving one's arms excitedly, and explaining to everyone who walks by.  When it becomes clear that once again our input will not be utilized, we switch to making sure it's on the record that we brought this up and told the right people.  For the next while, I'll try to pick up the pieces of the other projects that were abandoned along the way, and we'll compile an arsenal of queries and fixes for the inevitable difficulties to come.

I will also pay more attention to lowering blood pressure and stress level;  a decent work ethic can be deadly on this project, and this is nowhere near worth dying for.

Physical exercise is always a good option.  I'm working on partitioning the basement - not like a normal, sane person would, with proper framing and drywall, but instead with minimal framing and $5 doors from Habitat ReStore.  This will work fine, and the doors fit into the Santa Fe for easy transport (a 4x8 sheet does not).  ReStore has some fun stuff:  the one in Baraboo has a player piano and one of those stairway chair lifts, and the one in Wauwatosa has a massive conveyor belt system.  Intermittently, I help Z. take down trees to make room for the orchard.  Today, I plan to shovel snow from the garden, to help it warm up and dry out.

Phenology:  saw a sandhill crane yesterday.  A brief internet search implies this is not particularly early for their return.  The general songbird population has been talking about spring for weeks already.  Talk of snow again on Tuesday, but highs in the 40s for a while after that.
Friending welcome, but lurking is fine too.

Constructive criticism is also welcome - whatever it is, trust me, I've heard worse.



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