Thursday, June 19, 2014

After the Cream Cheese

I was in good company last weekend.  I mentioned that I was taking myself out Friday night to see The Fault in Our Stars, & the date went well.  Going to the theater to see a movie alone is at the top of my list of "things I love to do, but rarely do."  When I was younger & had few responsibilities & heaps of free time, I never went to see a movie alone.  I mean, that's so sad, right?  No, no it is not.  It is awesome.  

The movie is better than the book.  Mark it down - - June 19, 2014 - - because that's not a sentence I often utter, or type.  Rather than making me want to rush home & reread the book, as movies often do, I wanted to just forget about the book & pretend the story was originally written as a screenplay.  Shailene Woodley, who takes on the role of Hazel, is a good actress (she's an exceptional crier!); I enjoyed her as Hazel considerably more than I enjoyed spending time inside Hazel's head as narrator when I read the book.  Ms. Woodley out-acts all of her cast mates in the film, though Ansel Elgort, who portrays her love interest Augustus, does a fine job in my opinion.  If you plan to see the movie, be aware that it thoroughly rips your heart out.  My mascara was running in rivulets down my face, which was not at all a problem since I was on a date with myself & jetted out of the theater as soon as the credits started to roll so as to avoid seeing anyone I know who might've interrupted the solitude of my date (or be taken aback by the make-up sliding off my face).  

After my big date night Friday I'd have been content to sit home all day Saturday, however, Trey & I had a gift certificate to Cotton burning a hole in our pockets.  Cotton, for those of you who aren't local readers (a population I estimate to be about four), is a fine dining establishment.  Trey's parents graciously agreed to sit with the children Saturday night, & so I enjoyed not one, but two date nights last weekend.

Regularly I see pictures of couples I know posted to Facebook . . . they're dressed up, they're smiling, & the couple selfie they've posted to Facebook boasts the caption, "Date night!"  Sometimes the picture is accompanied by an explanation that, OMG!!! Date night is soooo overdue, and they, like, really need to get out of the house & relax because they haven't been out since last weekend.  I totally roll my eyes at these silly couples, especially if they have one child, or maybe they have two children, both of whom have a functioning pancreas, & I am tempted to comment on the photo & tell them about needing to relax.  Or checking blood sugar at four in the morning.  Or only washing your hair every third day.  Something like that.

Trey & I are both homebodies, & between that & the fact that we're not comfortable leaving Reagan with anyone but one of our mothers (because most nurses & endocrinologists aren't looking to pick up extra cash babysitting), we don't make date night a regular thing, but I am so glad we showered & dressed in our finest (okay, we were both in jeans) & made the effort last Saturday night because, well, CREAM CHEESE.

Trey let me decide which appetizer we'd order.  This was a huge sacrifice on his part, because he knew that concession meant there was no chance he'd be enjoying Cotton's duck wraps since the duck is wrapped in bacon, which I do not eat.  I don't eat pork, ever, at all.  I'm not sure if I've mentioned this to my blog readers, but there you have it.  And no, no I am not Jewish.  I just think pork is kind of nasty.  So anyway, no duck wraps.  What I decided on was Creole Cream Cheese, and oh, oh, I made an excellent decision.  It's this little dish of cream cheese that's layered with some sort of pepper jelly, & then there's a glaze of honey over the top.  It's served with some sort of fancy crackers that, in theory, you spread the cream cheese on, but I found it was lovely just licking it off my fork.

I have no pictures of Trey & me, or the cream cheese.  You'll just have to imagine all the pretty.  

Since Saturday night, I've thought a lot about the Creole Cream Cheese.  There are various reasons for this.  First, it was so good, & I am plotting my way back to another helping of it, but the logistics are tricky.  Cotton is not a place I eat often (again, various reasons, all involving my kids).  Second, I continue my quest to lose weight, which is going fairly well, so in general I think about food a lot (though this was also the case when I was not attempting to lose weight, hence, the weight).  Finally, I think my thoughts return to the cream cheese because since eating it, not much else of note has happened.

My mom left town early last Saturday morning en route to spend the week in Destin with her sisters.  What this means for me is that this week I've been minus one babysitter.  The kids & I have been at the house a great deal.  I love my kids, & I love my house, but you know, it can all get a little mind numbing - - change his diaper, check her number, fix the food, inject the insulin, change his diaper, check her number, fix the food, inject the insulin - - & thus, nostalgic thoughts of the cream cheese return, & admittedly, thoughts of the tranquil setting in which it was enjoyed.  At one point earlier this week, I was mentally composing lyrics for "After The Cream Cheese is Gone," a song set to the tune of the Eagles' classic, "After The Thrill is Gone."  And really, cream cheese & thrill are synonymous.  I am sure if they were more familiar with the Eagles (which they will be soon enough!), my kids would've been having some fun with "Witchy Woman."

Nana, Nana, are you home yet?

The only photos I have to share were taken by Reagan.  It's an abstract series titled, "Mom's reading so she let me have her phone for awhile":

There were a few exciting moments yesterday morning when I got into a verbal throwdown with a total stranger on the Internet over whether or not alcoholism & obesity should be labelled diseases (is an overwhelming desire to prove that strangers online are SO, SO WRONG a disease?).  That's the crazy thing about Facebook: you comment on some article a friend posted, & then their friend, whom you don't know at all, comments, & you simply cannot do the adult thing & walk away, you have to respond.  

Then, I posted the article on my Facebook page, where further discussion ensued, although it was mature, adult discussion, admittedly mainly because I'd gotten my rant out of my system already for the most part.

Since the Facebook showdown I've been doing a little reading (outside the fiction realm, that is), including some reading about Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who, if you didn't know, is a Type 1 diabetic.  So stay tuned, & if I can ever get my thoughts together (& away from the cream cheese), you'll be treated to the kindest things I will ever, ever, ever have to say about a liberal member of the Supreme Court (or any liberal, anywhere).

On the fiction front, I have finished rereading A Farewell to Arms & decided to begin The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons.  This may've been a mistake.  After I'd downloaded the book to my iPad, I discovered it is the first book in a series.  No, no, no, I thought.  Don't get yourself involved in a three book series, Anna . . . I texted my friend who'd recommended the book, & she has yet to read the second book in the series, but confirmed that yes, it's a series, & apparently one that has a bit of a cult following online.  So, it's basically right up my alley.  It is practically screaming my name.  I have begun the first book, & it's good so far.  It is not yet interfering with my sleep, or my ability to parent, but it's good.  It is set during WWII (I know, I can't get away from the wars) & is the love story of Tatiana, a young Russian girl who is seventeen at the novel's open, & Alexander, a young Russian solider.  It boasts lines like, "We're at war with Germany," Alexander said.  "I have no time for pretenses."  Good stuff.  You have to love a man who has no time for pretenses.  If you don't hear from me for awhile after today, you can be pretty certain I am heavily involved in Russian attempts to thwart Hitler.

Did you notice that I completely glossed over A Farewell to Arms?  Not to worry; more on that later.  The book club is scheduled to meet next week.  I am mentally preparing myself to defend the merits of Hemingway's work as I fear I will be the novel's only cheerleader when we meet to discuss it.  I think this is the first read for everyone in the book club, & admittedly you have to read the book at least twice before you begin to love it, in my opinion.  Perhaps I will write a book about a book club that is split in two over the members' differing opinions on A Farewell to Arms.    

So, to summarize: cream cheese, online bickering, & a little fiction.

If you're out & about in the twin cities this weekend, stop by Cotton & enjoy their Creole Cream Cheese appetizer (they do not pay me to say this).  I'll be satisfied snagging a few banana flavored Puffs when Henry's not looking.  Or Reagan.  Or Sophie.  They're all nuts about the Puffs.  I, clearly, am just nuts.


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