Thursday, January 17, 2013

Best Sick Day Ever!

Sickness is here! I knew the sickness was inevitable as one by one my coworkers, friends, and family fell captive. So far, I'm the only one in the family who has been hit and it hasn't actually been that bad. Congestion, foggy head, and sore throat. I rarely ever get sick, so I guess I was long overdue. As long as I'm not puking, I'm a happy sick person.

Last night was day two of the sickness and I fought it off with a nice long spin class. I may be crazy, but it has always been my own personal philosophy that sweat and exercise is the best thing for your body when you get sick. When I ran competatively in college, this always seemed to be true and it has worked for me ever since.

After a full night of tossing and turning, plugging my nostrils with tissue paper, and trying to sooth my burning throat, I woke to my 5:25 a.m. alarm as I imagine a swamp person would arise from well...a swamp. I was groggy, my head felt like it was full of mud, and I looked pretty awful. I immediately hit snooze and didn't think twice about trying to make it to work. Since today was my husband's turn to wake, feed, dress the kids and drop them off at his sister's house, I fell right back to sleep for four glorious more hours.

I finally woke up at 10 a.m. and made the obligatory call in to work. I had a couple work projects on my plate and I got those out of the way first thing. After that, the day WAS MINE! First, I lounged on the couch with tea and caught up on Pinterest and Facebook and some of my favorite blogs. Then I tidied the house, but only just enough to feel accomplished.

Then I went to the craft store. Not because I needed to buy anything. I went to the store solely because I had the rare luxury of driving somewhere without having to pack a diaper bag, strap and unstrap two kids into their carseats, and drag three different bags around with me. Although my husband and I pretty much split kid duty right down the middle, when we both have chores or errands to run, it's always expected that I will have the kids with me. I don't really mind it-- in fact, sometimes I prefer it. But when I'm running to the gym, the grocery store, AND the bank, it would be nice if my husband would take at least ONE of them with him on his ten minute hardware store trip.

Anyway, my point is that it has been so long since the last time I went on an errand alone. In fact, I honestly cannot remember the last time. So today, being able to peruse casually and aimlessly down the aisles of the craftstore with no agenda or care in the world (aside from trying not to sneeze or cough on anyone), was so freaking amazing.

On the drive home, I got to listen to Dori Monson, my favorite news radio show host (did I just say that? I'm such a nerd). His show is during the middle of the day so I rarely get to listen to him. I used to have a major voice/brain crush on him. Then I spoiled everything by looking up his website and finding his headshot. A lot of people love NPR. I personally can't stand it. Luckily we have a local news radio station that is simply fantastic. The hosts each have different perspectives and political leanings and it's amazing how they can cover the same top five stories and present totally different news. I NEVER listen to music in the car anymore (unless T-Swift comes out with a new album). I'm a total news radio addict. I have no idea how I survived on a daily basis before "Ring My Bell" with Rachel Belle.

Because I'm missing the piece of DNA that tells people to veg on the couch, I came home and finished a painting that I started six months ago (I painted over book pages. Sorry "Hundred Years of Solitude" you were way too boring to earn a permanent spot on my bookshelf):

Then I started and finished another painting. My camera didn't pick up the background colors very well. I really liked the background. I kind of think I ruined it by adding the branch silhouette. It's definitely NOT my favorite painting.

I always hate my own art and that is why most of my work lives at my parents' house where they, in typical parent fashion, display it prominently and without objectivity and for the entire world to see.  I nearly die each time I go to their house and see all my HORRIBLE middle school paintings hanging proudly in their living room and dining room. I made them promise to tell visitors that they found the paintings at Goodwill.

I also made this star:

It was so fun and so easy. Right now, as I type, I am planning a star take-over of all the walls in my house.

In between all my projects, I drank six cups of tea (current favorite is black chai tea with hazelnut creamer and three packs of splenda = death by sweetness). I had a gigantic bowl of chicken noodle soup. When the kids came home, we played, I gave them baths, we cuddled, and then I wisked them off to bed.

Finally, at 10:00 p.m. when I realized that all I had eaten all day was my bowl of soup (one good thing about being sick is total loss of appetite and then being able to make up all the missed calories the next day), I sat on the couch and had a nice big helping of my delicious "whatever is in the fridge" pasta. I made it two days ago when our pantry was bare and we were desperately waiting for payday. It turned out really well and is going to be my new go-to pasta dish. I'm thinking you can use whatever kind of cheese you happen to have on hand.

"Whatever" Pasta

2 cups milk
3 Tbs butter
3Tbs flour
1 tsp salt
Dash of nutmeg
1 tsp lemon juice
2 oz cream cheese
1/2 cup cheddar cheese

First I made bechemel saude by melting butter in a pan over medium heat. I added flour, stirring it in, and cooking it for another minute or two. I slowly added the milk and brough the mixute to a simmer. Then I melted the cheese into the mixture, and added salt, nutmeg, and lemon juice. At the very end, add in the chicken pieces. Serve over penne (or any) pasta.

I'm rounding out my fantastic sick day with a seventh cup of chai tea, and soaking in the peacefullness of a silent, sleepy house. I absolutely love being the last person to go to sleep.

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