Adventures In Air Frying


I've been diagnosed as diabetic, with several possible causes/complications.  But as the VA Community Care program is FUCKING SLOW to approve things, and there's only ONE endocrinologist in my county and the next that takes TriWest, Apple Health, or Medicare its going to be a while until I get any kind of confirmation on what kind of diabetes it is.  I didn't even know until I was diagnosed by a nurse practitioner (the VA has really burned bridges up here...there's only ONE general clinic that takes them, outside of the hospital and one urgent care clinic, and its owned and staffed by only nurse practitioners) that there are at least 4 common kinds and unknown number of uncommon.  I've been given metformin (but not a refill!), and a blood glucose meter — both from the VA...who won't give me sufficient test strips!  And they're expensive!  I'm going to have to sign up with a subscription service to get reasonably priced ones and a lot more of them, which will mean getting a second meter, too.  If I run out of metformin and they don't give me more, I'll go on berberine.  I tried it out the first couple of weeks and it seemed to work — at least when I wasn't countering it with a mocha in the morning, which also countered the metformin!

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Second Basualty

So I got my garden started last month, bought 6 basils — 2 long leaf Italians, 2 Genovese (these are the 'regular' basils you see everywhere), 1 Dark Opal purple, and 1 lemon.  I held them in my apartment for a few days, making sure they were all hydrated, etc, as places I get them from tend not to water more than once a day or so.  The day I was planting them, too, my Chinese garden neighbor gave me some of her overpopulation of lettuce.  My yarrow, ginger, and daisies are still going strong from last year, plus I have nasturtium, marigold, and bees friend volunteers, along with 2 new lavenders and a new rosemary.  Not trying anything more intensive this year, like squash or tomatoes...unless the gaggle of sproutlings I noticed this morning are wonder/sunberries.  Hoping to get another clematis like I had back in my first garden in the Falls years ago, but they're kind of expensive and its a bit late to get something neat that might match some of the other flowers.

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Well...Maybe Its Finally Time to Move My Ass On

My serviceberry, the one that I've been keeping in a pot inside until such time as I get garden space or move to another project where I might have a balcony or patio again, died.  I confirmed that today by cutting it down in sections with the hope that some green in the stem would still be in existence.  Nope.  And the rootball was not a ball like I expected it would be, but it might be that a serviceberry cane doesn't grow roots that way.  Hopefully this isn't just in time for a garden spot to come open.

I don't like the LJ agreement, so I removed all my photos and userpics, and am making this post to let people know I'm on Tumblr and Instagram as zhorathewolverbabe, and I'm posting more to my dA journal (also zhorathewolverbabe; this may also change, too, since dA got sold and isn't answering questions), and just joined Furry Nation (as Zhora), which looks quite promising.

Anyway...I'm not going to delete this account just yet so there's a chance as many of my friends as possible get to see this message.


I May Be Making Cheese Squash Soup

COOKING: In throwing in the ingredients for Carrot Butternut Squash Soup in the crockpot, I made a huge mistake - I added the milk at the beginning.   I also used bison broth and a little curry instead of the paprika because I apparently keep forgetting to buy more.  No money outlay this time, as the squash came from the food bank and the rest I already had.

Only 4 hours to wait and see if I'm blending Carrot Cheese Butternut Soup, or its inedible.

ART: In other news, I have more products up, 'cause I did something which I think is kinda awesome a couple days ago:

Cool Rainbow Gator on Zazzle and the same on RedBubble.  Its actually an old sketch that I was never paid for (client pulled the 'that's not what I'm looking for' bit after giving me only a vague description and absolutely insisting I do it), so when I came across it again in my computer a couple days ago, I putzed around with it and came up with this.

UPDATE: the soup turned out perfect, tho it tastes a tiny bit carroty, as carroty soups do.


Goddammit, Supermoon

I've been going and walking in one particular city park in the morning, and when it rains, the mall, for the last month.  This park is down on the bay, where wharfs and one of the two train tracks used to be. Part of the southern part sits on some actual rock, but the northern part doesn't, and in fact the northwest section of the walkway is an old wharf with a dock that half-sunk a few years ago which is awaiting repair and rebuild into an over the water walkway to another prospective park a mile north.

About three years ago, the city used half a million from a tax levy specifically for improving the parks (what can I say, we love the hell out of our parks!), to rebuild the shoreline where it had eroded over the years back out to where it was before, complete with bigass rocks piled to hold the edge and three rock jetties, added turf, and a new 50' rock beach for the kids.  I guess they didn't take into account both global warming and a supermoon...

'Cause two thirds of that work has washed out to sea just in the last week.  The high tide I saw yesterday, that was up near the asphalt trail and licking the bottom of the wharf was apparently GOING DOWN, 'cause when I got a better look today seaweed was halfway across the lawn to the bandstand, which is about 60' from the water's edge.  Today's high water mark was just about half that, 10', but still up over that corner of the lawn.  Some of the non-grass plants were starting to die, and the one tree that fell over but has been stably growing at the edge for decades has been getting its roots undermined.  The grass I'm pretty sure is a mix meant to endure seawater, but we'll have to see how long it can hold out.   The wharf warped on the *lawn* side, which has a few sinkholes now and tilted the rectangular rock at the corner, to the point that  cyclists were yelling out warnings to eachother to keep right instead of do the usual corner cutting.

I don't think that northend overwater walkway is getting built anytime soon.

And all that rebuilding of the shoreline?  2/3rds gone, with the bay eating all the new turf behind and above the rock retaining wall.  Only half of one of the three jetties is still above the water, too.  I suppose the earthquake last year had something to do with destabilizing the rocks, but the bay is also clearly reclaiming the shoreline it carved before the rebuild.

The south end of the park is fine, aside from the new rock beach being 2/3rds gone, because that end is several feet higher than the north end.  Gotta wonder why the north end wasn't raised when they had the chance, but it probably had to do with the bandstand and the bathroom would need to be raised several feet, too, as well as that entire half of the asphalt trail buried and remade, and the trees uprooted and replanted (or replaced) if they couldn't take having several more feet of dirt around their trunks.

Goddammit, just as I was using the park more.  Gotta get my sea vibes, even if I don't swim.  This morning was just depressing, tho.


Time for Christmas!

And this is one year I don't mind at all that decorations and music started way before Thanksgiving.

In fact, I'm attempting to promote my Zazzle and RedBubble wares on Pinterest and Instagram in hopes that will drive a little business, including people buying my bit of Christmas pop art above.  But its a longshot and I'm new to the platforms, so we'll see.  Not sure where else I feel comfortable going yet, tho I really do need to revive my Google+ account, too, I suppose.  And maybe see if I can post something to Amazon, but that might be trickier than uploading items I have in hand.

Found some things today, too, that I've been looking for for YEARS - my tape of my favorite Christmas LP which has never been released on CD: Wonderland of Christmas by Andre Kostelanetz and his orchestra (a lot of the compositions have been on their other albums but I kind of memorized this one as a kid and like the wooden reindeer ornament it just isn't Christmas without it); San Juan Suite by Narada (which I didn't even know they made it!  They're one of my favorite publishers!  The tape was acquired decades ago at the Whale Museum, and is in honor of the Southern Resident orcas); and Electric Dreams. :D  ED turned out to be broken, but I think there's a possibility I can get directions online to do a tape surgery, at least good enough that I can make an MP3 of it like I proceeded to do to the other two. 

Come to think of it, maybe I can put the wooden reindeer on products, too, if I can get a photo I like. You guys have seen it here already in the last several years.

This will be my first holiday season entirely without family to buy presents for outside of my birthson, and it feels great.  I'm sure the parents will try to contact me again like they did on Veterans Day, but I'm still remaining no-contact.  I am in no way ready to forgive them, and they are in no way repentant or trustworthy at this point.  Things were explained to the siblings, tho, but the low-contact with them that I've had for decades now isn't going to change anyway, so *shrug*.  And really, I don't have any money for gifts, even if I'd shopped garage sales like in previous years.  I am not taking drugs, but the herbals I'm doing in place of the drugs still do cost me significantly.


When Other Cooks Say 'Don't Use'...I Should Listen

Tried to save money today by making mayo under the tutelage of a few videos, one of them Gordon Ramsay's (but I didn't end up using his recipe).  And as I only keep two oils around, olive and coconut, and I needed to use up an old bottle, I elected to use olive oil.

Despite one video mentioning that you shouldn't use olive oil because it gets made bitter by blenders.

Yeah, this is where the title comes in. XD

Since I need the mayo for a macaroni salad, and the crap I made tasted like rancid motor oil colored by urine (I tried to rescue it later in hopes of using at least some of it, but then needed a Coke to clean my tongue), I ended up going to Grocery Outlet and spending a few dollars after all  (which are getting slim this time of month, which isn't helped by me apparently still having mild difficulty with impulse - hellooooo Steven Universe and Monster High blind bags!) on a bottle of safflower oil, and tried again.

And its good this time!  I'll use sour cream to make up the exta half-cup the recipe calls for.

In other news, seems Zazzle lost a bunch of my products, including one that was selling, so I have to go back and rebuild.  Which I needed to do anyway, as my tags are lacking and I'm sure that didn't help sales any.


P.S - the mac sal is delicious. :)


I feel like documenting this here, complete with halfassed recipe.  Because I made it up, its weird, and might taste good (or not), and I just feel like writing a recipe, and calculating basic cost.

So I got half a pint of blueberries from the food bank this week, and eggs, and milk, and thought, hmmm, what could I do with them?  I know!  I'll get some breakfast sausages from the Dollar Store (or Tree, I forget), the kind that are more like sticks of ham, because that kind of pork goes good with fruit, and I will make a quiche.  And combined with the frozen crust and cheese I already had, voila!

Blueberry Sausage Quiche

1 frozen 9" crust ($1.99 for pack of 2; Grocery Outlet)
1 half-pint fresh local blueberries (keep the less ripe ones when you sort - adds extra dimension to the flavor because they taste like apple) ($0, food bank)
1 t salt (Real Salt - I forget how much it cost because I bought the bag years ago)
1 t organic pepper (about $2 for 3 T bulk, pre-ground fancy mix; Terra Organica)
1/2 t organic garlic powder (about $3 for 1/4th c bulk; co-op)
1 large pinch cloves (Spice Islands jar I've had for years, so I dunno)
1 large pinch nutmeg (small Durkee jar I've had for years, so ?)
6 John Morell smoked breakfast sausages ($1, Dollar Store), diced
1/2 to 3/4ths c fresh local organic milk ($0, food bank)
5 eggs ($0, food bank)
1 to 1 1/2 c local organic raw white cheddar ($13 for a 2 lb block, co-op; doesn't trigger allergy response)

1) Preheat oven to 375; set frozen crust out to thaw (takes about 10-15 minutes depending on room temp; you can also prebake it according to package directions if you want).
2) Grate cheese into large bowl.
3) Add spices to cheese.
4) Break eggs into small bowl, wisk together with fork.
5) Pour eggs and milk over the cheese and mix with fork until completely integrated; set aside.
6) Spread diced sausage evenly across the bottom of the thawed crust.
7) Place blueberries on top of the sausage.
8) Carefully pour egg mixture over the blueberries, taking care not to stir up the sausage too much.
9) Bake on 375 for 15 minutes, then lower to 350 for 30 minutes.
10) Done when browned on top and knife inserted into middle comes out clean.
11) Allow to cool before cutting.

Serves 8.

And its...
Actually pretty good! :D

Cost for this quiche:  About $1 for the crust, 20 cents for the spices (give or take), $1 for the sausage, $1.50 for the cheese, and the rest was free.  So the whole pie cost about $4.20.  Of course it would have cost a whole lot more if I'd bought all the ingredients, particularly the blueberries.


P.S. - the gc's are now tasked with reminding me, LOUDLY, that next time I want to try a pastry experiment, that fillo dough is one of the WORST things to use when you have limited counter space!!!  And even if you HAVE lots of counter space!!