Monday, July 26, 2021

Catching Up on Monday


Freshly Picked Tomatoes 

Sunday was a good day.  My leg felt fine after resting on Saturday.  I did three of loads of laundry, made French toast for breakfast, ham fried rice for lunch, and watched some of the Olympics games on TV.  Daughter watched the women's gymnastics with me, as that's the event she's most interested in (having done gymnastics as a child and doing acrobatics, now).

In between watching the games on TV, we picked some of the ripe tomatoes.  We picked a colander full!  I didn't weigh them, but, I wouldn't be surprised if there were at least 5 or 6 lbs.  There are more tomatoes on the plants, too!  What an abundance!  This year's garden produce have been such a blessing!

In the evening, I cut up the tomatoes and made a pasta sauce.  I didn't follow a particular recipe, but, I added two onions, chopped up, part of a bell pepper (also from the garden), several cloves of garlic, some dried basil leaves, a little lemon juice, and salt.  Brought everything to a boil and then, simmered for about 30 minutes.  I know some people cook their pasta sauce for a long time, but, I wanted to preserve as much of the fresh taste as I could.  It made quite a lot of sauce!  I also browned some ground beef with onions and garlic, but, didn't add it to the sauce as daughter likes to be able to adjust the amount of meat to sauce.  

Towards the end of the sauce making, around 9:00 p.m., the phone rang - it was my cousin V.  "You don't go to sleep early, do you?"  "No, we are night owls!"  She and her husband were at the nearby airport (a smaller airport than the Los Angeles International Airport), dropping off their younger daughter K, who had come for a weekend visit and was flying back to New York where she lives with her husband and 2 sons.  Except, her flight was delayed by 3 hours.  And rather than have her hang around the airport for 3 hrs., V asked if they could come to my place to wait, instead.  I said, yes, of course.  I did warn her that the house was a mess!  Which it was, because there was the last load of laundry hanging up to dry, dirty dishes in the sink after cooking, etc.  And there was very little time to tidy up.

But, there was a huge pot of freshly made pasta sauce and the browned ground beef.  I put a pot of water to boil for pasta just before they arrived and we were able to offer them an impromptu pasta dinner!  K said she had packed a sandwich with her, but, I told her to keep it to eat in the plane if she gets hungry later!  K, whose mother-in-law is of Italian descent and, by all accounts a good cook, said my pasta sauce was very good!  Not that she could have said anything else, under the circumstances, but, it pleased me to hear that.  LOL.  I didn't have anything to offer for dessert, but, I had Lemon Puffs, which is a type of Sri Lankan cookies, so, served those, instead.  Later, when we were putting away the leftovers, I remembered that there was a rum cake that someone had given us, still in its box, in the fridge!  Oh, well, I'll keep that for the next time I get some unexpected visitors!

V and family were here for about one hour or maybe a little more.  We didn't wear masks and that bothered  me a little bit, but, I felt awkward to ask them to wear masks (and we'd have to take them off to eat, anyway).  In any case, we were all fully vaccinated, I had the living room window and front door open, with the fan on, and the air purifier on, so, I think it was alright.  We left the window open and the air purifier on for some time after they left.  As I mentioned to one of my friends, visiting with family in the age of Covid is a bit of a minefield to say the least!  

But, it was nice to see them all again.  Plus, I sent a bag of zucchini home with V who said she loves zucchini!  LOL!  Trust me not to lose an opportunity to get rid of  share the abundance of zucchini!  In any case, there won't be many more zucchini from the garden from now on.  When M was here on Friday, he started pulling out some of the zucchini plants.  He will probably pull out most of the rest this week.

After my cousin and family left, daughter put away the leftovers while I loaded the dishwasher and wiped the stove, etc.  then, I cleaned the bathroom and put the bathmats I had washed earlier on the floor.

I had spoken with neighbor T and called Aunt C earlier in the day.  Friend R had called while V and family were here; I called her back after they had left.

It drizzled a little bit, late last night and early this morning.  It was also rather cool when we woke up (I felt cold enough to wear a long sleeved blouse, leggings, and socks!)  But, the afternoon was sunny and 75F; my socks came off!  LOL.  

Neighbor T called, again, this morning.  Yesterday, she had mentioned that she had a box of stuff to go in the recycling bin, but, her daughter had taken the big bin to the curb for her, already, so I offered to take her stuff to the recycling bin if she puts it out by her back door.  Today, she called to say that it was not necessary to take the stuff to the recycle bin, as what she had could wait until next week.

I asked T if she'd like to have some of the pasta and sauce that I had made and she said she'd love some if it wasn't a bother, but, said to give her only a little sauce because sometimes her stomach reacts to tomatoes.  So, I served her a bowl of the pasta with a little sauce  and put some extra sauce into another container in case she wanted more and took it over, keeping the bag with the food at her front door and knocking to let her know that it was there;  She called out a thank you as I walked back to my house.  Later, around 6:30 p.m., she called to say she had it for her supper, it was delicious, and she ate every bit of it, including the extra sauce!  LOL.  I'm glad she enjoyed it.  

Daughter's week of vacation has ended and she started work, again, today.  It looks like her return to the office will now be delayed until at least mid-October!  Yay!  I'm glad she can stay down here even longer!  I think she's happy, too.  We joked that she could always go back early if she needed a break from me or I could maybe spend a week or two at her apartment if I wanted a break from her!  LOL.    

Cousin V called me this morning to thank me for letting them come over on short notice and serving them dinner, as well.  She said her daughter made it back safely to New York, after an unscheduled stop over in Utah to refuel (apparently the plane was carrying more passengers and/or luggage than expected and they needed more fuel!).  I told her that I was glad to see them and be able to offer a simple meal.

I've had a fairly productive day, today.  I put away the washed dishes and pots, etc., put away the last load of laundry from yesterday, removed the dust sheets from the family room sofa, vacuumed under the seat cushions, put new dust sheets on them, and washed the other sheets.  Watered the back garden (last night's drizzle wasn't enough for them)and picked three more zucchini and a small handful of green beans.  Then, I took the trash cans to the curb.  

Neighbors took down their tents!  I guess we won't have another party in the next week or two!

Neighbor S brought us two ears of fresh corn and more ice cream cake, leftover from earlier!  She offered some garlic, too, but I declined because daughter had bought a lot of garlic for the chutney making (I had told her to buy 1 lb. of garlic and she bought 1 kg.!)  I gave S one of the bags of lentils we had received from daughter's friend A, in return!  LOL.

Daughter vacuumed the family room, today, after she had finished her work for the day.  

I am grateful for:
- The tomato harvest!
- Seeing cousin V and family and being able to offer them a simple meal
- The zucchini harvest
- Daughter might be able to extend her stay until mid October!
- The drizzle we had last night
- S bringing us corn and more ice cream cake
- Daughter vacuuming the family room for me
- The air purifiers and other working appliances

Sunday's joyful activities included picking some of the tomatoes, making the sauce, and having cousin V and family visit and have dinner with us.

Monday's joyful activities included sharing food with neighbors and being in the garden.

Plans for tomorrow include going to the doctor's office for my injection.  I received written authorization from my insurance for the injection; according to the letter, a copy was sent to the doctor's office, but, I'll take my copy, too, just in case.  

How was your Monday?  What are your plans for Tuesday?


  1. Wonderful that you daughter is staying a little longer with you! Visiting & having guests during COVID times is certainly one that takes a delicate balance of precaution, friendliness & being a good host. Good luck with your injection.

    1. Thank you, Mary-Lou. Yes, visiting is becoming a balancing act! I declined cousin V's invitation, last week, to attend a memorial for her husband's uncle (service in the church followed by dinner at her house), but, I find it hard to say, "No, you can't come to my house" when people call and ask if they can! But, I think I will go back to being anti-social with our new case numbers being what they are! The doctor's appointment was long drawn out, but, I received the injection; for that, I am grateful.

  2. What a nice impromptu visit from your cousin V and family.
    And it was perfect timing that you were making the tomato sauce and browning the hamburger so you could offer them a delicious spaghetti dinner.
    What a nice opportunity you all had to reconnect. I'm sure your graciousness was appreciated.

    Our smoke detector signal of a low battery ( I guess that's what it was - it wasn't a full alarm if you know what I mean) went off at 2:30 am last night.
    Now for you, you would've been up doing the things you do at that time of night but we were sound asleep so it was a bit jarring.
    It's funny because a lady who writes another blog I read just had the same thing happen to her in the middle of the night. Her smoke detector was direct wired so it wasn't as easy as removing a battery. Added to that, she has moved into a new house recently so she had a bit of a time figuring out how to shut it off!
    So I was counting my blessings at 3AM that our solution was much easier!

    I just took apart and cleaned the fixture above the kitchen sink which has an open globe and gets dusty. And I also cleaned the hanging light above the kitchen table.
    Need to still do the light above the island and then one of those chores I put off will be done and it's not even 7:30 in the morning :)

    Your garden continues to provide wonderful fresh vegetables. What a good year it's been.

    1. Thank you, Debra. It was lovely to see my cousin and her family and the timing couldn't have been better! I'm sure I would have found some nibbles to offer them if I didn't have anything ready for dinner, but, it felt very satisfying to have been able to offer them dinner. But, oh, the anxiety about Covid exposure! I think it will be a while before I entertain on purpose, again! :D

      Oh, aren't those smoke detector low battery signals annoying? Nerve wracking, too, when they happen in the middle of the night!

      You've had a very productive morning! Well done!

      Thank you; the garden is doing very well, this year and I just got the water bill to prove it! LOL! More than $100 than budgeted! Eek!

  3. The end of an era--the last of your zucchini! :)
    After a booming start to our zucchini harvest, something is eating it on the vine. We'll see if we get any more or not.

    1. A number of the zucchini plants are now having powdery mildew on their leaves, but, others are having new flowers. Not sure if I want to have any more zucchini, though! I still have a bunch of them in the fridge! I hope you are able to get more zucchini before the summer is over.

  4. How lovely to have impromptu visitors and just happen to have made a delicious pasta sauce to offer a meal! I'm sure you were fine since all of you were fully vaccinated. We had our DS, DDIL and DGD here on Sunday and were able to hug for the first time since I don't know when! Most of the time we were all either at the beach or outside eating on the deck. By the way, they brought us two (yellow variety) zucchini and beans from their garden.
    So pleased to hear that your daughter will be able to stay with you even longer.

    1. Thank you, Bushlady. I was very happy that I had enough prepared food on hand to offer a meal to them. My mother would have approved! :D Oh, how wonderful that you were able to see your son and family and hug them! Yay! I'm so happy for you!

  5. Those tomatoes look good. You really have done well with all of your garden efforts this year, haven't you? Is that cheering I can hear as M removes the zucchini plants? 😂

    That's great to hear that your daughter can stay even longer and I am so pleased for both of you.

    I spent this morning (Tuesday) visiting my friend and this afternoon online shopping and some decluttering. It's been a good day!

    1. Thank you, Eileen. Yes, the garden has produced well, this year, and as I mentioned in an earlier response, I have the water bill to prove it! I went well over my allowance! I think uprooting the zucchini plants will be considered a new Olympics sport! :D

      Sounds like you've had a great day. I spent a good chunk of my day at the clinic!

  6. Busy, productive and company too! It all sounds great, and I'm also very happy to hear your daughter can stay longer! It's dark and rainy here today which is a nice relief from the scorching heat. I hope your Tuesday is a good one! :)

    1. Thank you, Martha. It all worked out very nicely, but, I felt a bit out of my comfort zone having people over! Glad you are enjoying some rain and relief from the heat! :)

  7. Nice harvest, nice sauce and nice that you could offer a meal and some hospitality to your family members!
    I like the phrase about entertaining being a minefield. It definitely is just that!

    1. Thank you, Anne. I think it all worked out well, but, it has shown me that it will be a long time before I voluntarily host or attend a large gathering! Large being more than 4 people, total! LOL!

  8. So no more zucchini? You had an abundant harvest and shared with many people and I'm sure you'll be blessed with an abundance of tomatoes. Nice that you got to see your cousin and her family. We are night owls too but I don't like when the phone rings after 9:00. Too scary. She probably reads your blog and knows you stay up late though. How wonderful that your daughter gets to stay until mid-October. I bet you're both happy about that bit of good news. Sorry about the mariachi music. I'm not a fan either. I can take a lot of music but mariachi music is not one of them. You're a good sport though. I just loved that painting you did on your previous post. Didn't know you were a painter. It was really good. Loved the colors. Denise

    1. Well, we might leave one or two of the healthier plants for a little while longer, but, I wouldn't complain if I don't get any more zucchini! LOL. I only have two tomato plants and both are absolutely loaded with tomatoes!

      No, none of my cousins read my blog! They know I blog, but, they think I'm a bit weird to do so. :D But, they know that I stay up till quite late.

      Ha, ha, I'm not a painter, really, but, daughter wanted us to do a fun activity together and I like doing arts and crafts. We followed an online tutorial and it was fun. We might do more painting over the weekend. :)

  9. Your tomato plants are being very productive. That is a wonderful harvest and I did wonder if you might make a pasta sauce with them.
    It was lovely for you to invite your cousin and family to share your meal, but I understand your concerns. It will feel strange inviting people into our homes after all this time. X

    1. I only have two tomato plants, but, they are producing a lot of tomatoes! I usually make pasta sauce or chutney with tomatoes; but, this year, I'm making chutney with the zucchini and I don't think we need tomato chutney on top of that. I might also freeze some of the tomatoes to have on hand for various curries.

      I was very happy to have my cousin visit me, but, I think it will be a while before I have a party! :D


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