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December 30th, 2002 - 2:33 a.m.

I'm Currently Avoiding: The Entire Next Calendar Year

Oh look...two or three entries in as many days. It might be miraculous. Or not. I'm betting not and on boredom instead. That sounds about right. I'm actually not all that bored, because the rest and time with my family is nice. I play secretary and type my grandfather's letters and thank-you cards, read, rest, sleep, and play on the computer a bit. Sometimes I get ambitious and cook or bake. It's a nice, simple life that I enjoy. Sure, it can get a little tedious at times because I live in the middle of nowhere but the change of pace is nice. And even though it's cold, it's still worth it to have time like this. Not that it's been cold lately. In fact, I think we've been having a record-breaking warm spell this weekend. Not that I've been outside or anything. But in theory. In fact, I don't think I've set foot outside since Wednesday. And I like it that way. I'm probably quite close to an agoraphobe. Or maybe I'm just a recluse who doesn't like the majority of humanity. It's very nearly the same thing.

I don't know, just a few comments that I haven't gotten around to mentioning. Yesterday I spent about 4 or 5 hours of my life baking some pan rolls and a tea ring. The pan rolls turned out pretty good. Of course, they're best when they're very fresh and almost right out of the oven, but they were good today too when we finished eating the last of them. The tea ring is okay...I told my mother that it didn't need to rise a second time and I was right, but she insisted and so they rose a second time, which makes them taste almost exactly like the buns. That's all fine and dandy, but it means that you can't really taste any of the brown sugar and cinnamon mix on the inside. You can taste the frosting though, which is a rather interesting color since I accidently put in more vanilla than I needed. I wasn't expecting the vanilla to come out of the bottle so quickly and it spilled over. So instead of being white, the frosting/glaze stuff on top is darker...but I can't think of the color that it's called. Almost a butter cream kind of color? I don't know. Just not white like it's normally supposed to be. Baking bread is really a time-consuming process. It's not really all that difficult or time-consuming to *make*, but the time you wait for it to rise...especially if it has to rise twice, certainly adds up. I suppose that's why bread was normally made about mid-morning maybe so that it could rise while the roast or whatever was in the oven. It's definitely something to be done when you have lots of spare time. I was just in the mood to make them. And eventually, I'm going to be in the mood to try a recipe for butter tarts that someone gave me. I would've made them yesterday when I was in my baking mood, but we don't have any tart pans. There is a small pie tin left over from when my grandmother was alive though that might have theoretically worked in its place, but considering the fact that I need to make 12 shells, it would've taken forever to make them. 12 shells, 10 minutes a piece...2 hours at least. And that's just for the freaking shells. I couldn't handle it. But the tiny pie tin is left over from when my grandmother used to make pies. If she had extra pie crust (she almost always made her pie crusts from scratch...not the frozen kind you find in the store), and/or extra filling, then she'd make kind of a miniature pie that she'd give to the kids who were around, be they her children, grandchildren, or other children who just happened to be in her house. She was a wonderful person and I miss her.

Anyway, moving on to less sappy and more disgusting points of interest, I have to recount what happened this evening. I got up to fill a dish of food from over by the stove in case anybody wanted seconds. Then when I went back to sit down, I noticed that there was a fly squished against one of the ice cubes in my glass. I was incredibly grossed out...especially by the thought that I might have been *drinking* my soda while that fly was in there. I was so disgusted that I dumped out what remained in my glass and left the kitchen entirely. I still want to make a disgusted, horrified face when I think about it, even hours later. Its icky. Icky, icky, ICKY. I cannot express exactly how ICKY it is.

In other news of things that creep me out, my sister's pet rat is starting to bother the heck out of me. Now I like pets, but there are some I don't care for. Rats are one of them. I swear, this rat is like...some sort of stalker or something though. Every time I pass his cage (the cage is on the dining room table which we don't usually eat off of and has papers and books, etc. on it) on my way to the living room and he's awake, he gets up on his hind legs and follows me as I go past. His beady little eyes stare at me and his nose twitches and it's like he's trying to jump on me or something and the only thing preventing it is the bars enclosing his little rat body. Anyway, it's really creeping me out. I've probably got an overactive imagination that isn't being diverted into my writing like it normally is. So ignore me, I'm insane.

Tomorrow (later today really), I have to venture outside. We're going to the sort of big town 45 minutes away. I'm going to have to remember to bring a book with me. Part of what we're doing there is getting the radiator fixed (it's leaking apparently) in the van which means we'll most likely be sitting around at the automotive place for awhile waiting for it to be finished. Then comes New Year's Eve and whatever it is we're doing...I think boardgames and maybe something unusual to drink. Maybe I'll update before then. We'll see. If not, Happy 2003 (are you really that happy that another year's come?). Ciao.

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