A Brown Christmas?

Hope not, but today on Xmas eve, it’s blowing like 60. Really. Wind speeds are 20-35 mph with gusts up to 60 mph, and we’re under a wind advisory and a small child alert*. As you might suspect, we have some very moving scenery today, heading NNW at a pretty good clip. I had a pretty stiff headwind coming back. I thought I was going to have to beat to windward to get back in the building.

The above were taken when I braved the elements to get another Phred at Market Street, which is the same chain of super markets that I got the original from. The original Phred was a Norfolk Island Pine. This Phred is an Italian Stone Pine, which is drought tolerant and wants 6-8 hours of full sun a day — which he isn’t going to get, alas. My new windows face the northwest. This new Phred will either adjust or he won’t. I had the last Phred for 27 years, which sets the bar pretty high.

The gnome with the white braids is wishful thinking on my part. One day my hair will be long enough to braid again and I’ll knit myself a gnome hat to celebrate. Goals. I haz ’em. Here is my contribution to the decorations in the common area. I’ve never really been big on seasonal decorating — even when I had someplace to store them.

The revised forecast for mañana is a high of 78 F/25.5 C, which is even ridiculouser than a high of 73 F/22.7 C, but then today’s high was 81 F/27.2 C. No surprise that today’s quaff is peach juice on ice. (serious nums!) I need to find my baggie of mom’s name labels and my laundry pen and get to sewing.

  • Small Child Alert — if your child weighs less than 35 lbs, belay them to something heavy like a car before you let them go outside, otherwise they’ll probably get blown halfway to Crosbyton and you’ll have to go hunt them.

Ham Salad!

Seeing as how it’s the eve of the traditional day for picnic blowouts that is the 4th of July, I thought I’d share this.

A little gratuitous product placement for you. Not pictured is a small can of sliced black olives. (A heaping handful of whole black olives would also work.)

Dice the onion, pickles, green onions and ham. Chunk chop the black olives. Dump everything in the bowl. Add enough mayonnaise to moisten. (As an alternative to mayo, you could toss with a balsamic vinaigrette.) You can also add some small elbow macaroni, but it’s too durn hot to cook any so I didn’t. Chill overnight. Serve by itself as a side dish, or spoon it on to crackers for a snack, or make sandwiches from it. Serious yum, y’all.

I’ve made it this time in the new 2.5 quart bowl, which is very Goldilocks*, BTW. I still had plenty of room in the bowl to add the macaroni without the bowl being too full.

I’m dipping mine with tortilla chips, which is an art as well as a skill, but there are two sandwiches chilling in the fridge for later.

* Not too big, not too small, just right!