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Posts Tagged ‘squirrels’

Back to food! Ahh…..another beautiful, cool morning in Kansas. I started with opened windows, sitting in bed, reading news, blogs, and emailing family. Yesterday I eventually moved to the patio-type thingy in the back yard. Where I moved on to a food vice of mine: BBQ potato chips. Really. Sad, huh. I also had a few cashews in the bowl, and I’m thinking two squirrels wanted me to leave so they could grab them. They truly seemed to covet my ‘shews. The both twirled around the tree, ending up several times just above my head on a tiny little limb. Fussing. Just looking at me and fussing loudly. And let me tell you, the last squirrel needed to do like me and quit yearning for so much food and stop long enough to do a few sit-ups. Seriously, people, major belly issues going on. In truth, there was also some sisterhood going on. Would have high-fived her if I could have shimmied up the tree.

Earlier this week I made a few totally brilliant meals. There was my fabulous beet and apple salad and freshly grown okra (from our own K-State students’ garden.). The only thing I had to change this time in the salad was adding praline pecans instead of my really fav maple syrup pecan pieces from the all famous People’s Grocery. There were no maple syrup pecans left in my little jar, so I just stopped by a convenience store walking on my way home from work and bought a small snack package of the praline.

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And the okra? Delicious as usual! I sauté them in a tiny little bit of canola oil on high heat. I would roast them without any oil, but going for less energy in this move. I vow to use just enough to keep them from sticking to the pan. And then there is sea salt sprinkled at the end. And now they are all gone. sad.

Oh yes! And there was a lunch that involved one-half a bagel, spaghetti sauce from a jar, freshly chopped green bell pepper and onion. Covered first with grated Parmesan cheese, then covered in gooey Mozzarella cheese! oooooh! See this romantic picture below with my little pizza lunch? All the candles? Yep! Cheese deserves a little romance. Love it!
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Another tasty dish was some of my homemade ‘tater soup. A little skim milk, a little whole milk. butter. onions. taters. And fresh jalopeños from the back yard. Only I did not use enough to get the heat I like. I’m really not proficient at using fresh jalopeños and still need to work on how to adjust the amounts, so I add a few dry red pepper flakes each time I prepare a bowl. I also added some teeny tiny chopped carrots, boiled in a little water, and all of that poured into the soup as well. So that maybe I get some of the nutrients I have boiled out of the carrots into the water. I even had a bowl of this creamy, heaty goodness for breakfast yesterday. Now it’s all gone. 😦

The pièce de résistance came today when my food bud Tara C. invited me to her place for lunch, and let me tell you it was quite a feast! There was good music on the computer and great conversation to start. Then we sat down to a meal of green chicken salad. Yes, “gulp”, green. I never wanted to eat any of Sam’s green ham, much less green chicken! But she assured me it was the avocado and touch of wasabi in the mixture that made it green. And we had pink apple salad to go with the sandwich. Seriously. She assured me it was yogurt (I think) that gave it the pink color. And some nuts and cream cheese. And olives to dive in for! Ooohh how I like a good olive! And a lettuce salad with goat cheese. Blueberry muffin. A culinary delight for sure!
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Good thing I walked there and back because I really stuffed myself. Fantastic break in my day, but now it is back to work!

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Another beautiful day here in Kansas! Today the temps should stay in the 70s, and right now it is about 54 degrees outside. I will not have to run any air systems in my apartment today! It may rain, but we can use a little, so all is good. So, right now I’m listening to the birdies communicating with each other while I enjoy a delicious cup of morning coffee. Oh my goodness what a wonderful way to greet the day!

I know I usually talk about food, but maybe not so much today. Oh sure, you know I have eaten this week, but mostly quick meals. Very busy and worked longer days at the library than usual. And I will continue to work some today, only work here at home. So much to do! But you know I love it.

I took several walks during my lunch break this week, some with Regina, one with Leo, and one by myself. I found these walks really help “wake me up” again after lunch, because eating in the middle of the day often leads me into an early afternoon drowsy period. Actually, according to my pedometer I wear every day, I walked over 40 miles this past week. Didn’t lose any weight (well, bummer), but I know the exercise was good for me anyway.

Last night I went to Tara C’s house for beans and rice. It was really a very delicious and healthy meal, and I simply had a wonderful evening. She felt the dish didn’t have enough flavor, but the essence for such a meal came after the cooking! We added sour cream and cheese and then she had this amazing salsa that spiced it up just right. I don’t like too much heat or spice, so to me the meal was perfect. Hmmmm…….I wonder if there are any leftovers. Maybe more than she wants? I will just have to ask. She’s a good friend, she likes me (why of course!), so maybe I can impose myself that way. Worth a shot! Oh my! I can just taste those beans with the wild rice……they are waiting for me…..somewhere in her refrigerator…..just calling my name…..can you hear them? And maybe I’ll make some cornbread. I wonder what God thinks about me coveting someone else’s food on a Sunday morning? Maybe I better calm down a bit.

Today, since there really isn’t any other meal to discuss but the one Tara prepared, I have something else on my mind to share. I’m wondering about the squirrels that live and play on our planet. Earlier this week, during one of my lunchtime walks, I saw one little fat squirrel venturing out on the end of a small, thin limb to eat whatever tasty morsel grew out there on the tip. As I mentioned, the limb was thin, not very sturdy, and as she was lying down, trying to hold on, the wind was blowing and her weight was causing the limb to bounce. (With the red fur and fat little belly she reminded me of myself! So I believe she was a girl. Well, I don’t have red fur, but I do have red hair.) Her big ol’ belly was splatted out over that limb for the world to see, but she did not seem to care one bit! All she wanted was that tasty nut or bud or whatever was at the end of that limb.

This scene got me to thinkin’. How do squirrels know how many nuts to hide away for winter? For each one they eat, do they hide one? Do they actually count, “One acorn, two acorns, one more nut, that makes three. There is a pile of 10, added to those other two piles, now I have 33.”? Or do they gather a pile together and think to themselves, “That pile is 15 centimeters high and approximately 25 centimeters round; that’s enough for December, so in this next tree I’m going to hide another pile for January.” As far as I know, they have no measuring tapes nor calculators. Amazing. I know every autumn they party in my chimney. Really, they get pretty wild up in there. They chatter, they jump around, they even make such a fuss that bits of dust fall through the crack in the damper. They must scurry down to one of the local “quick shops” and purchase the beer. (I figure that when the noise stops each evening they have passed out.) So, how do they pay? With nuts? Or do they actually have cash hidden in the chimney?

I will add here that these squirrels are beautiful (another reason I think of them as girls. Yeah, well, you know, I just do.) They are so chubby, as if they have two fur coats, and they remind me in color of a small red fox. Chubby is the way to go in my book! And since I would fit in so well with these cute little creatures, maybe I will join the next party. And represent.

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