Today we've had some long and heavy downpours. When I went to the grocery store earlier, the puddle filling the curb cut in front of the doors grew from a short hop to larger than I could jump over while I shopped. The drive both ways required lots of attention and some evasion, including two swerves to miss little frogs crossing the road. A major drain just above us clogged and the water made a white-capped cascade down our street to the next working drain.
Nothing seems to be in imminent danger and the noise of rainfall has now slowed. Fortunately, I got my Dutch Irises planted yesterday - about the only productive thing I got done.
I've wanted just white ones, with the yellow flare on the falls, for a while, but only found all blue or mixed colors. They had a pile of these still at the smaller hardware store. These grow easily in the heavy, dry soil in this area and seem deer-proof in neighbors' yards. I may go back for more.
I really hope everyone's Okay with mostly things other than knitting filling this post. During the return flight on Sunday I managed five rows on my sleeve. Since then I've knit just two more.
Part of the lack of knitting action relates to my feeling ill for the first couple of days after our trip. Food and I can have a love/hate relationship. And we basically ate no food prepared by us for four days. Wait, I did have one breakfast that pretty much matched what I usually eat. But something(s) disagreed with my system in several ways.
Much of what we ate had more salt in it than we usually use. We do have occasional sushi dinners or other high-salt meals, but our normal intake is fairly low. We both grew up with fathers on low-salt diets so no salt got added in our childhood cooking. Neither of us got in the habit of salting our food. Though my blood pressure runs just fine, a meal involving soy sauce can raise my weight a couple of pounds for a couple of days and make me noticeably puffy.
And I have a respiratory allergy to milk - it gives me asthma-like symptoms if I eat much of it or often. I know I had a couple of treats that were a real spurge for me at the function on Friday night. If I'm good otherwise, I can do that occasionally with minimal effect.
But it can be very hard to eat out with a food allergy. Ingredients don't get mentioned on the menu or the dish gets changed a bit without an update. Servers don't always know the actual ingredients. The good ones find out.
On top of that, I'm pretty sure there are other things I react to that I haven't identified yet. I've been feeling unwell off and on recently, and not in a flu-ish or getting-a-cold kind of way.
So I came home tired, with an unsettled stomach and difficulty keeping focused on anything that required much attention.
I also came home with several gourmet cooking magazines bought at the airport. They now sit in the stack next to my chair with the vegan cookbooks I bought in the last couple of weeks. I go through phases of wanting to read about little other than food or cooking. Often those phases correspond to times I'm felling unaccountably unwell. Perhaps my brain makes the connection between what I eat and how I feel and tries to find a fix.
Part of the impetus for the grocery shopping outing in the horrid weather tonight came from a search for a holiday cookie recipe that would make something suitable both to my dairy-less need and to my MIL's combination of diabetes and celiac disease (no gluten). Fortunately, I found a recipe for Holiday Fruit and Nut Balls that uses ground almonds rather than flour, plus dried fruit and orange juice. I have some decent almonds bought in a stop at Whole Foods on the way back from the airport. Here I found unsweetened dried apricots, figs, and plums for the fruit. I'll try producing powdered sugarsubstitute by whirring erythritol in the blender.
Unfortunately, I hadn't researched recipes before our little trip. Three other recipes I found all call for tapioca flour, which my local store doesn't have. They do have both brown and white rice flour, and both potato and cornstarch from Bob's Red Mill, as well as a premixed gluten-free baking blend - a big increase from recent years. But I really wanted to make the Lemon Olive Oil Cookies. Of course, I'm now a thousand miles from the source for the lemon oil, too, but you can bet I'll look for as soon as I get back to Seattle.
I did find a couple of good looking, smallish butternut squashes. I'll roast those in olive oil tomorrow along with a half dozen little yellow potatoes I have. Or maybe I'll try the Hashed Brussels Sprouts with Lemon and Poppy Seeds and save the squash for Thursday.
I'll make the fruit balls in time to have late-afternoon tea and cookies while I watch the deer graze in fading sunlight on the bird and squirrel seed I toss out back as a source of Kitty TV. That'll make decent compensation for the lack of things I'm used to having easily available.