Thanks in no small part to the people who contribute to this site (you know who you are, including the kind friend/fan/frequent commenter/resharer who dropped $100 on the paypal button to the right today!), Fish and I and our housemate had a fine if modest little Thanksgiving.
I got to make a couple choices like getting a fresh turkey at $.79/lb instead of a frozen turkey at $.20/lb less (it makes a difference at our budget, believe it or not), and get a few things like a bought pie. But nearly everything for Thanksgiving dinner, although it was not elaborate, I made.
We ended up calling it, The Pomodoro Thanksgiving, but it was Pomodoro Method in reverse really.
Pomodoro Technique is an awesome time management — really motivational — system for those of us particularly “on the spectrum.” You set up a timer, and it says, “Here are a number of tasks to work on for a limited time — then, you get to take a break for a reasonable time (also strictly timed) to do what you want/need/prefer to decompress and refresh.”
The classic Pomodoro — named for the tomato-shaped kitchen timer of the originator — is 45 minutes on task, 15 minutes off. For the originator, she found this made her so much more productive, despite what would seem like only 75% productivity, that most people would not believe that she could get so much done.
Our giggle was that we were rather running the reverse: fifteen minutes of productivity, followed by an hour of down time. My back has been running to spasms, and my new doctor has not been willing to re-up my anti-spasmodics because they are not on MassHealth’s acceptable list and he doesn’t have all my medical records. (And, now that I have copies of parts of my medical records, I’m actually interested in going back to Leahy and my old neurologist — and chucking my PCP who was feeding my neurologist bad info — my anti-obscurantist panties are once again in a knot about a system that doesn’t allow full participation of the vital participants).
Regardless, it took two days or more of prep between shopping, chopping, cleaning cooking, setting up, and eating — and there were times when I lay in bed thinking we were absolute idiots to think we could dream of putting together anything like a normal even abbreviated Thanksgiving dinner — but we did it (except, we never got the mashed potatoes done in time, the cold boiled potatoes will be cooked into something else).
- A small turkey, baked without stuffing, but with a pierced lemon in the cavity.
- bread dressing baked in a pan, with many chopped veggies in it — not nearly as evenly chopped or as fancy as I’d have liked and more celery and onion than usual — it’s cheap.
- Gravy from the drippings
- warm cranberry sauce made with clementine juice and sugar and allspice and fresh berries, six minutes in the microwave, cheaper and better than canned. (good cold later if any is left — makes good turkey sandwiches like the one I’m eating now as I’m blogging)
- (should have been mashed potatoes, didn’t make it)
- A small winter squash that, frankly, no one ate because there was all the other stuff!
- Strawberry peach 100% juice drink (not much on wine) on sale $1.50 42oz
- pumpkin pie
- strawberry rhubarb pie (another lark — it was $2.50 on the day old shelf, apparently they don’t sell well on Thanksgiving eve!
- a few olives, pickles and such from the fridge that we have anyway from the Pantry from Hell (I still have canned goods from better times — my parents grew up in the depression, and I buy canned goods in flats or bulk on sale — tuna and tomatoes and such have been exhausted but olives, jelly, pickles and so on we’ll have for a bit although it’s looking thinner — and happily we’ll have the dry beans and so on for a year — thank God I cook!)
We have much to be thankful for even with all the health and other bits.
However, after all that effort we retreated from our noonish meal to a tryptophan induced nap — and woke up at 1am on Friday. This is what fatigue does to an afternoon nap on Thanksgiving! ZOMG! We slept twelve hours, we were so beat!
Happy Thanksgiving all! We are laughing at it, but I hope it also makes you appreciate, if you are enjoying these, your own health and families, your youth and the blessing you have.
There is always someone better off or worse off than you. There are many worse off in our neighborhood than we — as we were resting before our nap we heard a neighbor in the street bellowing at a departing guest, presumably from his apartment: “YOU BETTER BRING BACKUP — YEAH, YOU BETTER BRING BACKUP!!” Then we would hear more shouting and the message repeated. Not someone thankful for the day perhaps.
In our neighborhood, this doesn’t merit a call to the police. It’s not “substantial.” We live among poor people with many tensions and problems, many of them stemming from mental health and addiction, or a lack of perception or literacy that make it difficult for them to understand their world without fear.
We live in a small oasis, reduced to this poverty, trying to maintain our hopes and dreams, and this lifeline to the world through the net, through the noosphere, through the world of ideas.
We are thankful for your help in so many ways — beyond the paypal donations, but of course, that’s vital too. But without the connections, there’s not much hope or purpose. I need purpose here, and my writing keeps me able to work toward a solution to all my other problems, while I live in a world that seems reduced in an immediate basis to something like “life in wartime.”
Hey, if you told me a decade ago that I would be able to spend a lot of my time just kicking back spending a lot of my days, playing little games on a PC (most of these days on a tablet flat on my ass but sshhhh!), blogging, and chilling, maybe listening to a little music — I’d probably think it was a description of heaven!
Faustian bargain — no one told me about the pain, seizures, migraines, fatigue, mobility,…
Meh, I can still be grateful.
Queue Jerry Garcia. Fire up an MMO. It’s a holiday.