Andy had lunch with Tanner today, so I was free until the afternoon. I had a sudden wave of tiredness after my shower, so I decided to lay down for a bit. The next thing I knew, I was being awakened by my wonderful husband. The extra sleep almost certainly contributed to my mood for the rest of the day.
After dropping Andy off at school I went grocery shopping. I mixed up the weekend he's going to the origami fest (I thought it was this weekend I'd be without a car), so along with picking up th inevitable stuff I forgot the other day, I did next week's shopping in whole. I may even have stuff for while he's away, rather than having to make an emergency run on Wednesday or so. I found out today that he was leaving on Thursday, but since he'll only be gone until Sunday and since he'll only be two and a half to three hours away, this isn't going to be a mope-fest like Siggraph was.
We have a storage closet outside, and a while back when all of my hydrangeas died, I just threw the huge pots into the closet dirt and all, making it look like a mess and giving us no room for anything else. Andy had asked me a long while back to clean it up, but I just never did. That is, until today. We now have a storage closet where you can see the floor (well, under all of the bark and such shed by firewood in the past years), with a stack of large flower pots, and the area leading up to our apartment has some nice new potting-grade soil. Oh, and the dumpster has a bunch of cheaply-made pots I never should have kept in the first place.
I made two connections either last night or today. The first is about JK Rowling's house elves. I realized their probable source; several legends in the vein of "The Shoemaker and the Elves" and "The Brownie of Blednock" -- in both of those, the faerie folk leave when offered clothes. For those not into Harry Potter, house elves are freed (whether this is good or horribly wrong depends upon the house elf) when given an item of clothing.
The other connection is with regards to my plants: when I visited Rome in August, my sister had a plant which looked like it hadn't been watered in weeks; all withered and obviously dying. Mom and Dave both suspected spider mites, and sure enough they found some. Pamela had not done anything about them because she thought they were spiders, and of course spiders trap insects and so on. Today for some reason I was thinking of my hydrangeas and gardenias, and suddenly I realized that they all ended up looking wilted no matter how much I watered and fertilized. I'm almost positive that's how my plants died -- spider mites, instead of my doing something wrong. I don't know that I'll be running out to get new hydrangeas or gardenias to test the theory, though.
Before lunch today Andy suddenly realized his cell phone was missing. We didn't worry too much; there was every chance it was at his office or in the car, though the latter would have been quite unusual. At any rate, after I'd driven him back to school he asked me to call the phone so he could locate it in his office. No luck. I called our apartment's office while he checked the lost and found at Sitterson, and both of us ended up with no luck. I also went out and looked in the parking lot, just in case.
Meanwhile I had this nagging memory of seeing his cell phone either on the passenger seat or having fallen out of the car, and not telling him. He and I are both pretty certain it was just a dream, since I can't imagine why I would refrain from telling him if I noticed he dropped it. Anyway, while returning from recycling all of the leftover milk jugs I'd used to water my aforementioned ex-plants (and which had also been cluttering our storage closet), I noticed a cell phone on the ground. Sure enough it was Andy's, which is definitely a Good Thing. It seems to still be working fine, so apparently last night's drizzle didn't hurt it.
For dinner we tried another Merlin recipe, chicken parmesan. Andy really liked how it turned out, though he didn't notice the addition of basil to the sauce and I found that basil has the same effect on me as pepper: it burns my mouth. I'll just go back to my three cloves of garlic and salt version next time. He liked the chicken cutlets dipped in flour, egg, and bread crumbs and fried before being baked, so I may keep that up. So long as I don't accidentally eat one of his (yum, eggs and a double dose of flour) I should be fine, and it should be easy to tell my plain from his breaded in the first place.
While Andy's away I plan on fiddling with some recipes for a traditional Christmas Eve soup. It has a cup of flour in it, which is bad, especially since I usually fill up mostly on the soup. We'll also be having fish which will be breaded and pierogies (part of the tradition is that you have to eat at least a little of everything; it's fun watching my picky little sister try to get the smallest possible bite of both soups and a crumb of the fish breading, etc), so the flour in the soup could be a problem.
I figure I might also try to make some pierogies from alternative flour, using my wonderful hand-cranked pasta machine for the dough, so that I'll hopefully minimize my exposure to allergens. I tried experimenting using potato starch while Andy was at Siggraph, but it came out almost gel-like, and I figure that would weird my family out. I'll try various alternative flours next weekend, and since Andy won't be here the smell of the saur kraut won't make him ill. I'm also considering, while I'm in experiment mode, of trying some wheat-alternative pizza doughs. This will be good for when we use Tanner and Janell's pizza stone as well as for making another Polish food, kolotz, which is traditional for Christmas Day.
I ordered the tape recorders today. They should arrive next week, so I can take Grandpa Pilny's and Grandma Shad's with me in October, after I've bought some tapes. I'll take the sets for Andy's Grandma and for his Grandmother and Grandad when we visit his parents. As his dissertation has been pushed back the date has become fuzzier; I've even briefly mentioned the idea that maybe we should just spend Christmas there as we have the other years (the Polish Christmas Eve celebration will actually be happening in October). We'll have to see what happens in the coming weeks with regards to the job hunt and moving and such.