Monday, September 12, 2011

Dinner at Home

Jerry cooked dinner tonight.  (And I cleaned up.)  We had pasta and chicken in pesto sauce.  I was about to take a picture of our meal as we sat down for dinner when IKEA showed up with a delivery.  It only took a few minutes, but I sat back down, inhaled my food, and then remembered that I had wanted to take a picture.

If you need a food fix, I've included a slightly blurry shot of last night's Leaning Tower of Caprese salad.  It was even better than it looked.  Plump, sweet tomato that tasted like it had been grown in South Dakota (where I've had the best tomatoes).  Mozarella unlike any I've ever had before.  And luscious mint that Jerry accidently swallowed whole, causing him to cough and sputter and requiring me to run inside and explain in surprisingly good hurried Spanish what he had done and that I needed some bread.  I'm so glad we had hierbabuena (mint) ice cream at Carmela in July.  That's when I finally learned to remember the word "hierbabuena"; otherwise, who knows how things might have turned out last night.  Anyway, it was a pleasure to sit in our own dining room and eat a real meal tonight. (CORRECTION AFTER POST-TIME:  That's, of course, basil.  The mint came from Jerry's mojito!)

Oddly, we chose to have dinner at 7:30.  Like Americans.  We will definitely be sure to not make a habit of that.  (The IKEA delivery guys thought we were a bit odd; I think the early dining was the reason, but I could be wrong.) We're going to head out later for a coffee or something just to stay on Spanish time.  But, breakfast and dinner at home today.  I'm proud of us.


We had gone back to IKEA this morning to buy what we hope will be the last pieces of furniture we'll need.  Another bookcase, more storage and work surface for me, file cabinets, and some other items.  My mood then crashed and I spent a good part of the afternoon napping, reading sad world and US news on the Web, reading beautifully written and very moving blog posts by others that brought tears to my eyes.  Just feeling a little deficient today and wallowing in it.  Jerry's allergies have been active and his ear has been clogged and bothering him for more than a week.  Nothing serious, but annoying and unpleasant for him and that saps his energy and enthusiasm.


I need to assemble furniture tomorrow and get organized.  That always helps.  It's making me a little crazy that there are framed things sitting on the floor, leaning against walls, and without homes.  They've been here since Wednesday.  Why aren't they all in their places?


Next comes joining the local gym.  That helps, too.  And then finding someplace to volunteer (but probably not working a telephone helpline).


  1. the sofa spot looks amazing, I could curl up with a book and stay there for days, just beautiful.

    Its really looking like a home... :)

  2. Yes, maybe a little "anal-retentive" but it's a big step in actually showing your mess.
    Your place is looking more and more like a home with every new post. Good job!

  3. David:
    Sounds good to me!

    I'm glad you appreciate what a major step it was for me to share photos that showed mess!

  4. John:
    And we were kind of la-di-dah at the time we purchased it. We liked it, but had no idea how much we would grow to love it.

  5. I did the same with our pictures. I would put them on the ground and wait a while. I always ended up changing my mind. I love your living room furniture, perfect for tea time entertainment. Love. xox

  6. Mess! You call that a mess? Pfft. Just looks like home to me. Mitch, you want to see mess, just walk this way ... (opens cottage front door and ushers Mitch inside) :)

    The apartment is looking marvellous. That hall stand looks like it was made for that spot. And the sofa corner looks so welcoming and comfortable ... zzz ...

  7. The house looks great! I am going through the same process right now after moving ...things leaning against the wall, looking for a new gym etc. Probably a bit easier for me since everyone speaks English - but I feel your pain.

  8. It's nice to see your place well lit. And the chicken and pesto sound amazing. I'm not big into tomatoes unless they're made into some sort of sauce but the mozzarella looks amazing! :)

  9. Being organized is a sign of higher intelligence and should never have been associated with our a...oh stop me.
    The volunteering thing is a great idea, especially as winter approaches, one doesn't want cabin fever.
    congrats on the new digs...

  10. You call that a mess? Now I feel like Job sitting on...

  11. Your apartment looks super and for only two short weeks, remarkably well organized.
    I like the conical table lamp... was that a US import or locally bought.
    Congratulations on eating at home - it's a big part of what makes a house a home in my opinion. Tell me that your kitchen has a dishwasher?! If not, that may be your next purchase, as long as there is room.

  12. I had to chuckle at the comments of Judith and Peter above, Mitch - and you'll know why!

    Must say I'm getting a bit concerned that with those high ceilings the apartment might get a bit cold in the Winter, and could cost a bomb in keeping it comfortably heated. Or is being so far south and not that far from the coast mean that it shouldn't get all that chilly?

    Btw: that 'Pisa' salad at the top looks mmmmm mmmmm. Right up my street!

  13. Nubian:
    When I put pictures on the floor, it's not to wait a while. They're supposed to be hung within a day or two. I need to slow down!

    Thanks! I am not an all-out clean freak, but I do get carried away. I guess I need to relax a bit, huh?

    This language thing... Some days I love it and am up for the challenge. Other days I feel like a complete idiot and I just want to crawl into my shell. So happy for you with your move. I look forward to reading all about it!

    We do need more lamps, but the natural light during the day is brilliant. Jerry does a great job with chicken and pesto. My brother is the same as you when it comes to tomatoes. I'd say you don't know what you're missing, but you very clearly do!

    And Jerry insists a cluttered desk is a sign of an ordered mind. Ha!

    I did say I'm anal-retentive. But even I looked at this post and thought, "Oh, get over it!" (By the way, what is it Job was sitting on? I must have been out for pizza during that bible reading.)

    The conical lamp was an IKEA find. (We shipped only one lamp from the states, an antique floor lamp from the 1920s. It arrived bent and broken.) The kitchen is very small, but does have a dishwasher and clothes washer -- both hidden behind cabinet doors. Very nice.

    --I thought of your recent post when I posted my "mess" pictures. I figured you'd get a good laugh at my level of neurosis when it comes to mess. I didn't comment on your photos because I couldn't stop the tremors in my hands. We probably wouldn't make good roommates.
    --As for the heat. The central ac/heat is exceptional, so we'll be fine ... broke, but fine. We had a 3-story house in Connecticut built in the '20s that had been renovated in the '70s. It was large and open to the roofline with loft spaces and all exposed brick -- no insulation. You could feel the wind blow through the brick in winter (and it got cold in Connecticut). In Vegas, we had a contemporary house with vaulted ceilings 2-1/2 stories high. We cooled that entire place through months of 47-degree heat in summer and then heated it in 2-degree cold in winter. We're used to blowing our money on utility bills! (But, winter is not very cold here.) The caprese really was mouthwatering. They didn't intend it to look like the Leaning Tower of Pisa...

  14. A house is now a home.

    Sidenote: when I first clicked on your blog I thought the Caprese salad was the Cat In The Hat's hat! Love it!

  15. Bob:
    I'm so glad you noticed that. (I hadn't until after it was posted.) It's appropriate since Dr. Seuss's (Ted Geisel's) widow is a friend. She was a supporter of UC San Diego libraries when Jerry was director there and gave a gift to have the main library building renamed Geisel Library.


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