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Wednesday, April 19, 2006

The Good, The Bad and the Ugly

(the order of the following has been altered to conform to my post title...)

Chef Tami Comes out of Hiding (the Good)

I was in a serious cooking mood last night. Probably because I was hoping to get home earlier than usual and thought I'd actually have time to cook…well, I only got home 1/2 hour earlier than normal. And, I still couldn't feel half of my face, so didn't want to prepare anything right away. But, I took out a chicken breast to thaw and had grand ideas for it. I washed the dishes in the sink (may sound like a small thing, but believe me, it's a feat for me…), emptied the dishwasher, refilled the dishwasher and lightly cleaned the sink and countertop (okay, the one clear countertop out of the four - it's a start). Then I settled down on the couch with my Lorna's Laces Motherlode (accidentally called it Goldrush on here the other day - must be an Apprentice slip) and worked on the crocheted sock I started (I have a cuff…or a hair thingy if I never pick it up again).

It was another hour and a half or so before I had enough feeling in my face where I didn't think I'd risk eating my tongue by accident… So, I sliced the chicken breast into strips and sautéed it over medium heat in a little bit of olive oil and about a half cup of balsamic vinegar, and then ground some Italian spices over the top. The vinegar reduces down and gets really sweet. Then I threw some frozen asparagus into the pan (chicken out) and a little more vinegar, on low until the angel hair pasta boiled. (I didn't time this well, but the chicken stayed warm, but I had overcooked it a bit). Threw the asparagus and balsamic reduction on top of the angel hair, sprinkled parmesan on top, and had my dinner. I was quite pleased with my efforts, except for the dry chicken (I am always paranoid I'm going to undercook it, and end up overdoing it. I didn't use the meat thermometer soon enough to counteract my natural tendency). I counted this as 11 WW points, which is more than I normally have for dinner, but I was point deficient yesterday and only made the pasta to get in my minimum!

The Faint of Heart…(the Bad)

All of my fears have been confirmed…okay, not all of them (that would be rather earth shattering, wouldn't it?). I usually don't fear the dentist, but this time I was afraid that I'd have another weird reaction from the anesthesia. I warned the dentist beforehand, and he said it's not that uncommon for women to faint if they receive the epinephrine too quickly (and Christyn sent me here yesterday to read about the fact that it is biologically impossible to be allergic to epinephrine, but it accelerates the heart rate and instills the fight or flight response. Of course, none of the symptoms for epi sensitive people listed there included fainting… Kind of scary to me that my flight response is to fall unconscious - I would not be good in a combat situation, unless used as a decoy!). So, the dentist numbed me up topically prior to the injections, and he was very good - I hardly felt anything (unlike the excruciatingly painful injections given by the hack!). But, shortly after completing the second injection, my vision started going black and blotchy and I felt that funky pre-pass-out sensation. I said something stupid like, "I'm feeling kind of eh…"(picture that statement with the accompanying hand gesture). And then I came to slowly - the dentist and hygienist were speaking, but it sounded like gibberish to me (that's a new one…I think all the other times I've passed out, it's been quiet when I came to) and I didn't understand it. The hygienist was doing acupressure on my temples and forehead, and then put cool cloths on my face. I was sweating buckets - I could feel it trickling (I know, thanks for sharing). So…yes Joie, I did mutter the infamous line…"Did I faint?" Like I didn't already know... They gave me oxygen and turned up the AC. I was a little shaky for a while, but it went away.

Good thing I had prepared them for this. I guess it wasn't a one-time thing after all. They marked my chart for no epi from now on. Aren't I special? This is a new thing for me - I never used to have a problem with dental anesthetics… And while part of me thought there might have been a contraindication with my anti-anxiety meds, I remembered that I was taking them the last time I had a root planing, and I didn't pass out then. I must be getting old. :( The rest of the appointment was fine though. I got my temporary crown (it's rough in my mouth…doesn't feel normal…at least it's only for 2 weeks!) and the other problem tooth filled. It doesn't look like I'll need the root canal, but the dentist wants to see how I do with the temporary crown before outruling it completely. He called me last night to see how I was doing. (I've never had a dentist do that before, is that normal? Or was he afraid he'd damaged me irreparably, and trying to avoid a lawsuit?) So, my next appointment is in 2 weeks.

Bye Bye Ugly! (and the Ugly)

The world's ugliest couches will soon be leaving my house. YAY! I'm getting another couch cast-off from Mom and my step-father, not the prettiest, but a vast improvement and way more comfortable. Of course, in preparation for the great couch crusade of '06, I need to do some major cleanup of my house. Major. I absolutely cannot allow the step-father to see the chaos in which I currently live. (This is because he tends to think his own kids can do no wrong, and likes to find fault with Mom's kids so he can point it out. I think this is possibly because he knows his own kids are obnoxious little self-serving brats, and it makes him feel better if he can put us down so he doesn't feel like as much of a failure. In any case, I don't want to unwittingly give him any ammo. And no, he doesn't usually say anything to our faces, but he'll mention it in a snotty remark to my mom. I don't know how she can stand him!!)

So, I am trying to do a little bit here and there where I can, which was part of the motivation for the mini kitchen cleanup last night. Barely made a dent though. I was planning on doing the big part of the cleanup project this weekend, but it's beginning to look like a hectic weekend coming up. I'm meeting a friend for Brunch on Saturday (planned when I didn't think I'd be doing anything other than cleaning this weekend). Then, there's a last-minute going away party for one of my closest friends who'll be moving to Denver shortly. So, Saturday is pretty much out. I'm stressing already! Any tips?

and a little more Good (to end on a positive note)

I may also be getting my mom's cat Gracie that same weekend, who doesn't get along with Mom's other cat. Gracie is terrified of the other cat, and stays under Mom's bed all day, aside from the occasional foray to the litter box or food dish. My step-brother's fiancée was going to take her, but thinks she's allergic, so I will find out soon if the cat is to be mine. I haven't had one in a while, and hope she's healthy. My last cat, Zena, had a mystery malady that no vet could figure out. I'm hoping I'm not cat-jinxed. This cat is really really sweet and affectionate - she was a rescued stray, and we wonder if she had been terrorized by other neighborhood animals or a former home. (Poor kitty)


kerri said...

Ding dong the couch is dead! :) And yay kitty! Glad the dentist went ok, but I can't believe the same thing happened.

Dagny said...

Yay for Gracie.

Tami said...

I'm excited about the cat - just hope that I can keep her healthy and alive. Good thing she's not a houseplant!

Dagny said...

Uh oh. Didn't you ever see 28 Days? One of the recovering addicts asks when is it OK to start a relationship. The answer?

"First get a plant. If it is alive at the end of a year, then you can get a pet. If the pet is still alive at the end of a year, then you can start a relationship."

Good luck!

Tami said...

Well, good thing I'm not an addict...and good thing that cats make noise when they need food and water...It's also hard to forget about them, when they're constantly in the next place you need to step...

Dagny said...

LOL. So true about cats. Mine are circling me currently wondering when I'm going to see about their dinner.

Tami said...

But who's going to see about MY dinner?? (Good thing I'm so freakin' independent...I think that's why I like cats so much too - not so attention hoggy as some other animals, but still love you...or let you love them)

Deb R said...

Oh my, the dentist thing made me a little cringe-y! (I've come close to fainting at the dentist before but I've never quite done it.) Your supper sounded good, though!

Hope you get the cat!