Sunday, December 29, 2013

2014 Here We Come!

Well, it's been a tumultuous year, the Match for residency, moving to Redding, a wedding, a honeymoon, and the first half of intern year of residency.  That has cut a lot into my time in terms of creative projects, but never fear, I am still motivated to do awesome things!  On that note, it's time for me to make my annual list of 10 resolutions I will strive towards.

1. Continue reading my Great Books list - most recently finished Seneca - On The Shortness of Life
2. Read one country Wikipedia page every other day - so far I've hit Canada, Mexico, Guatemala and Belize
3. Come up with a reasonable indoor exercise regimen that works for my schedule and motivation level - running would be nice, but my work schedule is such that I don't get out until it's pitch black, and the area isn't particularly safe.  Also, the summers get over 100 degrees and I am NOT running in that.
4. Cook one new gourmet dish per month
5. Continue watching the Minerology lectures, maybe some Entomology reading to go with it
6. Read and write down new medical guidelines at least every other day
7. Start painting and doing pen and ink sketches
8. Go camping
9. Come up with a creative Halloween costume
10.  Explore Redding and the local area by doing some of the following activities: Lassen national volcanic park, Local wineries, Balsamic and olive oil tasting, Shasta caverns

Bonus: Work on my novel!

That seems reasonable so far, if I think of more things I'll write about them -

I got a lot of whole vanilla and various bitters for Christmas so now I need to think of ways to use them...desserts or cocktails or both...  I'll have a little more time over this coming two weeks, so maybe I'll get some stuff done!  Other fun things... I bought a cute black dress with my Nordstrom gift cards, got a gray pea coat with my Mom, lots of interesting books... just need money now.  Need to save up for a Colorado vacation a year from this Spring, that's the next big thing.  Ordered some Monterey Clam Chowder and we are going to try to reverse engineer it.  Our feast for Christmas ended up being Ham since everywhere was sold out of goose, but I need more goose fat so I'll be going to get more soon...

Tonight going to my favorite German restaurant!  Wheee!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Random Recipes 15.06 - Pheasant Feast!

It's been a little while since I initially made this feast (a couple weeks) but I have been so busy I haven't had time to post! Anyhow, here are the pictures from the feast - I took about 1/2 cup of leftover goose fat and coated the pheasant all over (after it was brined for about 6 hours in an apple cider brine with thyme sprigs), and browned the skin in the cast iron dutch oven. Then I placed a bunch of coarsely chopped mushrooms, carrots and celery into the oven, placed the bird on top, and baked with a thermometer at 325F until it reached an internal temperature of 160. I gotta say, pheasant tasted to me like a sweeter version of turkey with more dark meat. Also, the flavors the goose fat and the pheasant drippings impaired to the veggies was spectacular - those were probably the best carrots I've ever had. The natural sweetness of the veggies was brought out with the fat and succulence of the pheasant.


The other dish here is a mushroom bread pudding - courtesy of Emeril (you can easily find the recipe online, I found it on the page about his version of pheasant, which I disregarded because I disagreed with cooking it at a high temperature when all the experienced chefs recommend cooking slowly because of the risk of drying out).

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving feast (for two), featuring duck!  The menu will include:
Duck brined briefly in pineapple orange juice with thyme and baked
Pomegranate-molasses sauce
Pumpkin pie - both from the can and from two baked sugar pumpkins
Truffled macaroni and cheese
Cranberry with wine, lemon/orange zest, cinnamon and pomegranate
Sweet peas
Stuffing with toasted sourdough, celery, and onions
Sweet potato baked with marshmallows

Alas, I have to work the next three nights, but...well, tomorrow should be yummy.  I have been busy on a few other things, working on the great books list, making fun cocktails, playing fun computer games, but alas, it is hard to update as frequently as I'd like.  Anyhow, hopefully I'll get around to some thanksgiving feast pics before long!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Cocktails 12.07

Well, here's the latest from my bar - I wanted to try out a different gin and saw Bombay Sapphire East sitting on the shelf at Safeway.  It seemed like a good volume for starting out with a new gin, so I got it on a whim.  On looking up more information about it, I saw a list of cocktails that aimed to bring out the extra herbal notes of thai lemongrass and peppercorns that distinguish this gin from the normal Bombay Sapphire.  A cocktail I found was called the Bombay Dragon, and is poured over ice usually, so I made a variation on it - kept most of the ingredients the same, but I don't have pomegranate-dragonfruit juice nearby, and I am going to soon add ginger syrup as well.

1.5oz Bombay Sapphire East
3/4oz Cinnamon syrup (I chose Goldschlager)
1/3oz Lime juice
1.5oz Pomegranate juice
A few shakes of bitters (I use Angostura - it called for a different bitters I wasn't familiar with)

Garnish with 3 peeled Thomcord grapes, frozen

 I found the grapes worked out as replacement for olives even better than I thought - first, I was worried they would float since they are mostly water but they didn't, and it looks better that way.  Second, the green tone substitutes well aesthetically for the olives - very similar.  Third, the sweet finish of the grapes contrasts really nicely with the dry herby tangy flavors of the drink.  I ended up peeling all my Thomcord grapes (and I ate the skins, of course, since they're super healthy) and they're sitting in my freezer awaiting more Bombay Dragon Martinis ^_^

Monday, May 20, 2013

Cocktails 12.06

Not too many new cocktails in the mix - I did make some computer game themed ones for game play, and I've made a few more TV or movie themed cocktails, but I've been trying to drink smaller quantities of alcohol.  As such, I've been making more use of tonic/herbal liqueurs, because they pack a ton of aromatic flavors instead of just sugars and dyes.  Examples include gin, chartreuse, absinthe, campari, bitters... which are fun to mix with tonic water and add a sprig of rosemary to.  I'm about to get some more ingredients and drinks - on the list today is Benedictine, diet Tonic water (just quinine for me, thanks!), Mead, and more Woodford's Reserve bourbon and whole vanilla beans for infusion.

I have also been playing Skyrim a lot lately, and mixing potions and enchanting things at ornate tables has made me want to put something like that into reality.  In the game, this is what they look like:

I think it would be rather fun to have a corner in the house with a table similar to this, a cabinet below with liqueurs and spirits in ornate glasses, and some various gothic and dark lore paraphernalia around the area.  I'm thinking a Cthulhu idol statuette, some pewter dragons and such that I've always wanted from Renaissance Faires, and miscellaneous tomes, like my thick copy of the necronomicon and old-looking cocktail recipe journals.  A rough draft of what I have in mind is:

With any luck I shall realize this some day, and have a nice corner in the house for cocktail mixing.  I imagine that over time various stains would start making it look very cool...

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Wine 16.03

I am sorry to say that I probably won't be making many more wine posts... reason?  

I have decided it's more efficient and useful to use an app on my phone to keep track of the - Catch - it allows you have a page of pictures and descriptions, which you can scroll through quickly.  Unfortunately, I don't know how to share it without giving editing access to the people I share with, and I would rather not allow random tampering by members of the infinite void that is the interweb.  I may still do segments about particularly awesome wines... of note recently have been:

Sequoia Grove - best Chardonnay I've had in a while, bought three wines from them, including the Chardonnay, the Rebellious Red (blend), and their Syrah Rose.  

Elyse Winery - we were going to visit them, but a link (on their website) to their Yelp reviews shows a TON of people who were really unhappy by the treatment they got at the winery, i.e. snobbery.  We received their Zinfandel in our last gift wine subscription, and it was extremely good, but I didn't want to risk them treating us like inferiors since we are just a couple grad student-aged wine enthusiasts of moderate monetary means...

On that note I'd like to briefly discuss the following: Snobbery in wine country.  The more I go, the more I seem to get a sense that people think you have to go to a small, unknown winery to get the "true" Napa experience.  Y'know what I've found?  The small wineries, while quaint and more private, are often younger wineries that have changed hands numerous times and were bought in the last 30 years by some rich retiree who had always wanted to run a small winery in wine country.  Prior experience in wine making is extremely variable, as most people spent 50+ years in a different occupation.  People may think the bigger, more crowded wineries that have been established in Napa for 50-100 years or more are "touristy" or have sold out, but they are popular for good reasons: they make their wine accessible and have been able to establish a certain consistency in the quality of their wine that only comes with time and experience.  That's not to say all small wineries aren't worth visiting - some are absolute gems - we visited one owned by a retired physician and their winery produced an affordable and very good Cabernet Saugivnon that is still in the wine cooler waiting for some special occasion.  Maybe it's just the fact that Napa is famous worldwide compared to other wine regions.  Either way, those are my latest thoughts on Napa.

Cheese 18.04

Well, I have to say we are starting to reach some of the less-enjoyable cheeses now, it would seem -

Westcombe Farmhouse Cheddar - Borough Market - a drier cheddar, but not particularly flavorful or interesting.

Berliner - The best of this bunch, but still a mild cheese.  Hard cheese.

Brillat Savarin Delin - a soft cheese, similar to Brie and St. Angel but not as flavorful/salty and the rind has that typical fungal "Brie" characteristic.  All this one did was make me miss St. Angel.

P'tit Basque - similar to Manchego but seems a little drier, a little less fat, a little less salt, a lot more rind, so it's harder to get a good bite of it.  Overall, not better than Manchego.

Mountain Gorgonzola - blue cheese, medium-soft - you can spread it if you try hard, the blue is not overpowering.  I think it has a good place in combination with crackers or bread, but Kit disagrees and thinks it is just not that flavorful, at least not for a blue.


So does this mean we are at the end of our cheese tasting saga?  I would disagree on that - but we are going to revisit some of our favorites.  On that note, I stopped at Safeway for some lettuce for salads and thought I'd check their cheese section.  As luck would have it, they have some of our favorites, so I got a few of them:

Aged Irish Cheddar
Cave Aged Grueyere
Goat Cheese Brie (I generally like Brie and they didn't have St. Angel so I got this to see how it compares)


Since we don't particularly like the cheeses we recently got, I thought we should have a few of the ones we do like to mix in on the cheese plates.  We also recently stocked huge amounts on our wine list!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Cheese 18.03

A lot of cheese here, this is really more a combination of two different ones because I took a picture for one but not the second set of cheese.

St Angel Triple Cream Brie - Extremely creamy and even the rind gave great flavor - unlike typical brie cheeses which have a 'funky' rind.  Almost like butter except cheese.  Would definitely get again.  See previous entry for discussion of brie.  Pasteurized.

Cotswold - Kit liked it more than I did, but it is a very strong flavor and the onion completely permeates the cotswald flavor.  Cotswold is a variety of Gloucester cheese, but blended with spring onions and chives.  Gloucester cheese is a semi hard cheese from England, aged 36 weeks, and made only with the milk of once near-extinct Gloucester cattle in the county of Gloucestershire.  There are two kinds of Gloucestershire - Single Gloucester and Double Gloucester.  Single Gloucester is more crumbly, lighter textured, less fat.  Double Gloucester is aged for longer, and is firmer and has a stronger more savory flavor.  I'm curious what Gloucester is like.  Unpasteurized.

Vintage Irish Cheddar (White) - Matured for at least 12 months, continually graded, aged for 3-6 months and encased in a black wax rind to differentiate it from other less-aged and graded cheeses.  Notable for rich, round, buttery flavor and firm smooth body.  Very delicious and texture a mix of creamy and grainy.  Would definitely get again.  Pasteurized.

Aged Jack - Flavor impressions: mild, not very impressive, not better than soft Jack - actually seemed to have less flavor.  Dry.  See previous entry for discussion of (Monterey) Jack.  Pasteurized.

Wensleydale - Produced in Wensleydale, New Yorkshire, England.  Supple crumbly flavor, moist texture, compared to a young Caerphilly.  First made by French Cistercian monks from Roquefort, and it is made from cows or sheep.  Pasteurized, aged 3-6 months, medium texture and crumbly.  We didn't much like the rind, and the flavor was average.

Humbolt Fog - a goat milk cheese made by Cypress Grove Chevre, of Arcata, California in Humboldt county - named for the local ocean fog that rolls in from Humboldt bay.  Mild-ripened cheese with a central line of edible ash, similar to Morbier.  It has a bloomy mold exterior, resulting in a core of fresh goat cheese surrounded by a runny shell.  Cheese is light, creamy, but with a mildly acidic stronger flavor near the rind.  Aged 60 days, pasteurized.

Pecorino Toscano Reserva - Made from ewe's milk on the island of Sardinia, this is produced in Tuscany.  The third most produced cheese in Italy, after Pecorino Romano (number 1), and Pecorino Sardo (number 2).  Pasteurized, prepared with full cream, should be aged at minimum 12 days but usually 4 months to allow adequate hardening.

Pecorino Romano - Made from ewe's milk on the island of Sardinia, one of the oldest cheeses in Italy, was even a staple for Roman legionnaires.  Has a distinctive aroma, pleasantly sharp, and very salty - in my taste that sharpness almost tasted like pepper.  A hard cheese, flaky.  Pasteurized.

Asiago Fresco - Italian cow's milk cheese, assumes different texture depending on aging.  A slightly softer flavor than Parmesan, from the town of Asiago in Veneto, Trentino Italy.  Not pasteurized.  Hard cheese, but  not dry.  Salted and pressed into a mold.

Brigante - Sheep's milk cheese from Sardinia.  It is a pecorino style cheese, semi-soft texture, matured for about 3 weeks, mild and creamy.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Cheese 18.02

Another wonderful sampling of cheeses, courtesy of our Whole Foods cheesemonger, this time from the Netherlands!

Starting from left to right...

Dutch Washed Rind: According to the website, one of the only washed rind cheeses to be made in Holland.  Described as a smear cheese, which describes the action of washing the cheese with red cultures during the ripening processes, this cheese has a distinct full-bodied hops flavor blended with malt, grass, and earth.  Supposedly pairs well with beer.  It tasted like a less "Brie-like" Brie, more firm, and quite delicious.  The "Washed Rind" refers to bathing the cheese in salt water, and occasionally with other ingredients such as wine, brandy, local spirits, etc. and helps to break down the curd from the outside.  They tend to have brightly colored rinds and pungent odors but a mellow well balanced flavor.

Parrano: A cow milk cheese produced in the Netherlands, with a mild nutty flavor, combining sweet and salty.  Semi-firm texture and a smooth, golden coloured paste.  Made from pasteurized milk in 20lb wheels then aged for 5 months.  Marketed as an Italian style cheese, but technically a Gouda cheese.  Very versatile cheese.

Chimay Biere Chimay: This semi-hard mild cow's milk cheese is produced from regional cows, some fed leavings from the Chimay beer brewery, and the rind is bathed with Chimay beer in order to impart the flavor and aroma to the cheese.  We did not like the hoppy flavor combined with the cheese, so we actually didn't even bother to save this one after our sampling.  But now we know to steer clear of beer-washed cheeses.

Vintage Gouda Aged 5 years: This gouda is aged 5 years and is hard but can be crumbled - salt crystals throughout, very strong salty nutty flavor with hints of caramel.  

Gouda is named after the Dutch city, and the cheese dates back to as early as 1184.  Gouda is more about the process than the flavor because it varies greatly depending on how long it has been aged. The cheese is made from cultured milk that is heated until the curd separates from the whey.  Some of the whey is drained and then water is added, which "washes the curd" and removes some lactic acid, leaving the cheese more sweet.  About 10% of the mixture is curds, which are pressed into circular molds for several hours. Then soaked in a brine solution, giving the characteristic taste.  Aged from semi-hard to hard, categorized by aging: 4 weeks, 8-10 weeks, 16-18 weeks, 7-8 months, 10-12 months, and 18+ months.  Young goudas are typically used for sandwiches, or a snack with mustard and sugar or apple syrup.  Older goudas are eaten alongside strong pale beers.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Cheese 18.01

Along the lines of different wines tasting different and wanting to remember which we liked and disliked, we will be doing the same with cheeses!  Here are the 6 cheese  varieties we tried recently:

Classic Jack Cheese - aka Monterey Jack - An American semi-hard cheese made with Cow's milk, originating in Monterey, CA and developed by the Mexican Franciscan Friars in the 1800s, and first sold commercially by David Jack of California.

Manchego D.O. aged 6 months - made in La Mancha from Spain from the milk of sheep of the Manchega breed.  Offiical Manchego cheese must be aged between 60 days and 2 years.  Firm and compact, buttery texture, a few unevenly distributed air pockets.  Varies from white to ivory-yellow.  Well developed flavor, not too strong, creamy with a slight piquancy, and characteristic sheep milk aftertaste.  Must be produced in various ways - from certain regions, only with whole Manchega sheep milk, pressed in a cylindrical mould that has a maximum height of 12 cm and maximum diameter of 22cm.  Artesano Manchego would be from raw milk, vs. standard Manchego from pasteurized milk.  Varieties include:
- Fresco - aged only 2 weeks but with mild flavor, small quantities, rarely seen outside Spain
- Curado - semi-firm aged 3-6 months, has a sweet nutty flavor
- Viejo - aged 1 year, firm with sharper flavor, peppery, grates well but can be eaten on its own.

Cadi Urgelia - Semicured pressed cheese - cream colored paste with many irregularly shaped eyes distributed throughout.  Natural, slightly moist orange rind.  Soft and creamy texture, sweet and penetrating aroma, very characteristic soft, fruity, and pleasant taste.  Made from pasteurized cow's milk from associated farms in the Pyrenees regions (Alt Urgell - Cerdanya).  

Campo De Montalban - A semi-firm to firm Spanish cheese made from a blend of cow, sheep and goat milk in La Mancha - resembles Manchego in texture and appearance.  Distinguished by its 3 milk blend, comes in waxed barrel-shaped wheels with an embossed herringbone design, similar to manchego.

Valdeon Blue Consorcio De Quesos - Queso de Valdeon - a Spanish blue cheese from Leon - made in Posada de Valdeon in the northeast of the province of Leon, wrapped in sycamore maple or chestnut leaves before being sent to market.  The cheese has a very intense blue flavor, but is not as yellowed or as biting as its cousin Cabrales.  Cow milk, sometimes coat - semi-soft.  Aged 2-3 weeks.  

Herb Brie with hint of Garlic - Brie in general is a soft cow's milk cheese named after Brie, the French region from which it originated.  Must be pasteurized in the US, generally aged 5-6 weeks, soft-ripened.  May be made from whole or semi-skimmed milk.  Curd is obtained by adding rennet to raw milk and heating.  Cast in molds, sometimes with a traditional ladle.  Overripe Brie contains an unpleasant excessive amount of ammonia.  Usually purchased in full wheel or a wheel segment.  Similar to Camembert, also cow's milk.

As far as our verdicts:
Jack - smooth and typical taste
Cadi Urgelia - a "funky" flavor that increased in funk over time - would not re-purchase
Manchego - delicious, like a softer Parmesan - nutty, salty...
Campo de Montalban - also very delicious, similar to Manchego but less sharp.
Brie - typical smooth flavor, the garlic and herb flavors were nice touches.  Unlike the mushroom variety.
Valdeon - very strong blue cheese flavor - semi-spreadable, okay on its own but the flavor is so intense it really needs to be diluted with something else.

Monday, January 21, 2013

New Years Resolutions

I feel like I should make a list of resolutions for the coming year.  A lot has changed over the years, making several of my previous resolutions like "Lose some weight," "Exercise more," and "Get better grades" somewhat obsolete.  The first two because I've managed to incorporate that in to daily life, and the latter because grades essentially do not matter anymore.  10 is always a nice number for lists, and I think I've noticed that the key with resolutions is to be specific with the directives.

The new goals/resolutions this year shall be...

1. Properly budget money - I am going to soon receive my final loan disbursement.  After July 1, I shall be on a resident's salary of somewhere between 45-50k per year.  I'd rather not have a crap ton on my credit cards...

2. Maintain weight and exercise practices - That's always the challenge, isn't it?  Just staying where you are.

3. Read more medical books and studies, and incorporate into practice - essentially, be better about using evidence-based medicine!

4. Read more non-medical books and finish at minimum 10 books from The Great Books list - I've been doing okay with supplementing with a story or two from the Necronomicon every other day or so, but I need to step it up a notch!

5. Cook a duck and a goose properly

6. Go skydiving - It's already in the works but it'll be nice to cross something off my list early on in the year

7. Sort and identify the remaining insects in the boxes - at least that ONE box - you know the one - I really need to get on this - can't really call myself an insect collector if I don't do some work!

8. Make 10 signature cocktails - I already have one or two, but I need to make a few more that are just 'mine' and with the DIY Cocktail book I have, plus the Little Black Book, it shouldn't be too hard!

9. Take falconry lessons - Again, it's already in the works, but it looks impressive on a list of resolutions.

10. Finish the NaNoWriMo novel before the next NaNoWriMo event 

PS: Start painting...

These must be remembered as being distinct from my current wedding planning to do's... which still include...
- Buy shoes and a veil
- Take dancing lessons
- Order materials for and make wedding favors (the bottles, the packet, and the beads)
- Finish pen and ink drawings so that we have labels for tables
- Figure out who will officiate
- Figure out the music
- Buy a shirt and tie
- Add more to the registry

Friday, January 18, 2013

Random Recipes 15.05

Here's an experiment in Chocolate Mousse - using silk tofu, vanilla extract, and amaretto.

Here are the ingredients: 1/8 cup white sugar, 4 eggs (separated), 1/2 package of semisweet chocolate chips, 3/4 cups heavy whipping cream (or if you are not splitting the recipe in half to allow for silk tofu then use 1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream), and extra bowls for pouring stuff into.

I know they always say to heat the chocolate over boiling water in a double layer pan, but honestly, if you know how to do it you can perfectly melt chocolate using the microwave.  Start small, with say 1 minute.  Then stir generously, try to evenly distribute, then heat for another 30 seconds.  Mix again generously, try to let the stored heat melt all the remaining solid chips.  If that doesn't do it, try another 15 seconds.  It should turn out okay.  Mix the white sugar with the egg yolks until smooth, and while WARM (not HOT, you don't want to cook the eggs when you add the chocolate to them...) add the chocolate - this should be one of the last steps, while you are beating the egg whites.  You don't want the chocolate-yolk-sugar mixture to cool in the meantime or it is hard to blend into the heavy whipping cream or silky tofu, whichever you are using.

Here is the heavy whipping cream after mixing for a long time with egg beaters on high - you can use a whisk but I don't see any difference.  It takes a few minutes but I promise it ends up looking like this

Here are the egg whites after being thoroughly mixed.  At this point, you will add the chocolate-yolk-white sugar mixture into the whipped heavy whipping cream and mix until smooth.  After that, add the whipped egg whites and fold into the mixture until smooth.  Then separate into bowls and cover with plastic wrap and place in refrigerator for a few hours.

Here are the various bowls of chocolate mousse - half are made with heavy whipping cream, the other half are made with blended silk tofu.  Each mixture has three bowls.  In each subdivision, one of the bowls is left as is, another is given 1/3 tsp vanilla extract, and another is given 1/3 tsp amaretto liqueur.  Just a little experiment.

At the end of the experiment - I thought they all tasted quite yummy, however, I gotta say that tofu doesn't quite add the punch that the heavy whipping cream adds.  It's plenty edible, but with a semi-blind taste test, Kit preferred the three that used heavy whipping cream to the three that had soy, and he thought the vanilla was too strong in the one with added vanilla. 

We did end up with an interesting conclusion:  The chocolate mousse with heavy whipping cream that had the added amaretto liqueur was equivalent in taste to the chocolate mousse without the amaretto.  Essentially that gives me permission to add a little amaretto to the mixture the next time I make chocolate mousse.  In the meantime, I get sole ownership of the remaining chocolate mousse samples, while Kit eats the remaining "chewy" chocolate chip cookies that I didn't like.

More to come later!

Cocktails 12.05

I've been feeling better lately - not sure if it's the fact I'm doing rotations again and thus actually busy with something that challenges my intellect, or just that I'm not around family.  Either way, I infused some more vodka with blackberry and pear, and I created a ginger syrup and a cinnamon syrup.  Here are a few shots of the process:

Reducing ginger syrup - a little added sugar, boiled ground ginger root with water, and then reduced.

Cheesecloth for sieving and the final product.

Blackberries and Pears infused in Russian Standard Platinum Vodka over past week.

Blackberry vodka after sieving

Finally the Pear infused vodka

 The trio after sieving through a wire mesh and cheesecloth into nice containers.  Ginger - Pear - Blackberry.

Friday, January 11, 2013

In the Wasteland

Been feeling a lack of inspiration lately.  And when I'm not 'doing' something, I start feeling depressed, so I gotta shake myself out of this.  Don't really know what I should do to fix it, so I'll run through my usual ideas.

Idea: Get gung-ho about exercising!
Counter-argument: Already have a decent regimen going, and wouldn't want the fiance to get upset if I look too toned...

Idea: Write more of that NaNoWriMo!
Counter-argument: Not in the mood, not 'feeling' it, blahhhhh

Idea: Work on beaded bugs
Counter-argument: Gotta buy materials, and it takes time

Idea: Order wedding favor parts and get started!
Counter-argument: Expensive?  And the fiance needs to work on his portion.  And we don't know final numbers, might be able to save money if we wait a bit.

Idea: Learn the piano!
Counter-argument: Not a bad idea, but laziness and lack of training materials...but still not a bad idea

Idea: Find new music to get excited about!
Counter-argument: Doesn't feel too productive to sit on my laptop with Pandora, but not a bad idea.

Idea: Paint!
Counter-argument: What subject?  Dark stuff?  Something for the fiance?  Might not have sufficient materials...

Idea: Read more Necronomicon + tea or other beverage
Counter-argument: Might do that, since they are short stories and if I'm not feeling it then I can put it down.

Idea: Play computer games!  I do have two new ones...
Counter-argument: One game really needs to be played at night by myself in the dark, the other - not in the mood.  The usual: played a million times, though I do have a new 'quest' that I can explore somewhat.

Idea: Organize insects!
Counter-argument: Don't have the patience right now, but I really should get on that...

Idea: Cook something fancy!
Counter-argument: Again, money - and trying NOT to gain weight.  However, I am going to start experimenting with roasting poultry since the fiance has passed the baton to me, so to speak, after a few less-than-successful endeavors.  That'll be next week maybe though.

Idea: Work on Spanish on Duolingo!
Counter-argument: Maybe I will since it's quick.

Idea: Clean upstairs!
Counter-argument: Now you're really reaching...

Idea: Watch stuff on TV that I've already watched?
Counter-argument: Maybe... or maybe find something NEW for a change?

Idea: Go for a walk - it's pretty nice out!
Counter-argument: If I can get the fiance to go with me - otherwise I'll wait and run in the evening.  Didn't put on makeup today so a shower won't be particularly inconvenient.

Idea: Learn another skill - or learn a set of knowledge.  Like reviewing wine regions, characteristics...?
Counter-argument: That might work, though I gotta find some stuff to do first.

Idea: Read medical articles/journals - you're starting an Emergency rotation on Monday...
Counter-argument: Blahhhhhh...

Idea: Have a drink?  Forget the world?
Counter-argument: It's 2pm and sunny.  And calories.

Idea: Okay, I tried, go fuck yourself.
Counter-argument: Maybe I will...

Well, after all that it looks like I'm most open to... going for a walk run (since the fiance said no), reading more Necronomicon with a beverage, watching something on TV - maybe look for some videos about Emergency medicine, playing out some of Skyrim, exploring some music or doing duolingo...  Kinda want to give up Facebook too.  That and Yahoo! News are both on my continual refresh list and they almost never change with anything interesting so it's getting pretty boring...Don't know why I bother.  Partly used to be to enjoy schadenfreude but now I don't even care as much about that.

I think I'll start with reading...I guess.  I could also just take a long walk over to the UC Davis bookstore and get a pair of scrubs, but then I'll probably be too tired to run later.  I'll leave that for tomorrow, I suppose.  I'll be running shortly.