Saturday, December 7, 2013

Trying to be a Normal Person Again

So it's been about three weeks since Mom passed away. I've been working mostly, haven't gone to the gym, just doing the absolute basic essentials in life, and sitting on my ass watching a lot of tv. The feeling of being the weird kid in school, while I'm at work, is starting to fade a little bit. I started to realize how much stuff I've put on hold these last four months, and I don't think Mom would really approve of it. So, I'm trying to be a normal, productive person again.

Last night, I had Michelle the Cook over for supper and we watched "The Sound of Music Live" from the DV-R. I do love the movie version and was quite happy with the live televised version. The only thing I would have done differently if I ran that show would be to work on the audio levels. There were times the music was so loud (which sounded good), it drowned out the singing. But at least with Carrie Underwood (who I've never heard a single one of her songs) had enough volume for almost all of the program.

For supper, I decided to break out the crock pot. I looked up recipes for shrimp and came up with the "Company Casserole" recipe.
  • 1 1/4 cup raw converted rice
  • 1/2 cup melted butter or margarine
  • 3 cups chicken broth (I used almost 4 cups of turkey broth)
  • 4 cups cut-up cooked chicken (leftover turkey here too)
  • 2 cans sliced mushrooms, drained I substituted a can of drained diced tomatoes because I didn't have mushrooms
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1 package (12 ounce size) frozen shelled shrimp
  • 8 green onions, chopped  I went for my staple, powdered garlic, instead
  • 2/3 cup slivered almonds  left them out because I figured they'd get soggy
Mix rice with melted butter or margarine in slow cooker. Stir to coat rice thoroughly. Add all remaining ingredients, except slivered almonds and some green onions to sprinkle over top. Cover and cook on low 6 to 8 hours, or High 2 to 3 hours.

This recipe really looks like it's going to be soup, but the rice does absorb all the broth and becomes a spongy dish, although I wouldn't call it a casserole. I cooked mine on low for about 9 hours. While the casserole didn't burn, I should have cooked it for about 7 hours instead, but I was at work all day.

The other thing I finally accomplished last night was another gnome. Here's his back story. In September, I had a shitty time at a concert, left early, and went to an antiques store in Virginia Beach to window shop. 

I went back again shortly after that, bought the Santa, looked for the mermaid (she had been bought so I ordered one from Amazon just like the one at Barrett's, only cheaper), and realized they had a good number of garden gnomes. I went back a third time, and picked this little guy up. He's probably about 10 inches tall.

He was made by Artline in 1992, according to the markings on the underside of his feet. He was holding a tool or something at some point, which broke, but I can't get the rest of the handle out of his hand. He was originally marked at $16, then $6 and I got him for $5.50.

My grandma had an Artline cookie jar of Mickey Mouse when I was a kid made out of the same plasticy stuff as the gnome, so that's why I recognized the Artline brand immediately.

He's cute, but a little too "Disney/Snow White and the Seven Dwarves" for my own taste. I was going to do him as Uncle Sam, but then inspiration struck: he needed to be a leprechaun gnome, in honor of my mom whose birthday was St. Patrick's Day. He is a complete repaint, all the way around. He actually needed a lot of primer for some reason to get started.

There is glitter on his beard and hair, just because glitter MAKES EVERYTHING BETTER!

I even custom mixed paint colors to come up with a flesh color that I liked. 
Different shades of green and a healthy clear coat to protect his paint job. Only his boots are the same color as before. BTW, I love his little booty.


  1. Thanks so much!! I try to remind myself of things that Mom would expect of me. Some are easier than others. :)