I think my DVR is pissed at me. It's been working SO hard lately, and here I am, just letting things pile up. It's normal for me to record WAY more than I would watch at the beginning of the TV Season because I like to try out as many shows as possible. Furthermore, this season is getting out of hand because there are quite a few good Guilty Pleasures out there. However, I can't spend every weekend catching up, so little by little, I'm giving shows the old Heave Ho. The first to go was Men in Trees. Next up was Survivor - I will try to catch this live when possible, but the Ugly Betty and the Office/My Name is Earl combo gets precedence. Thanks to Zoot, The Class gets another week's pass. I think Jericho is going to bite the dust. The frustrating part of that show is that I fast forwarded through much of last week's episode, could still follow the storyline and AM STILL curious as to what's going on. Anyway......
I've noticed something - I always say I LOVE to cook, yet I only cook a full "traditional" meal a few times a week. I think that is probably why I do love to cook because when I DO cook, it is something special and that makes it fun. If I had to cook every night, maybe I wouldn't enjoy it so much, eh? Anyway, this week I made a sweet potato erisheri - I've referred to this recipe before using pumpkin (link is here). This was my first time making it with sweet potato and I have to say I liked it better that way. Furthermore, I didn't feel like messing with the mung beans, so I left them out to no ill effect. In other words - leave out the beans if you are in a hurry. I also made a meen molee with pomfret. I've never used pomfret before and really, really liked it. It's a hearty fish that can stand on its own, but isn't too rich. With all the coconut milk in the molee a rich fish can become too much.
I've also noticed something else. Apparently, Arun doesn't like North Indian food. Whenever we eat out, he turns all White Kid on us and won't have anything to do with what we give him. I can sometimes get him to do aloo gobi, but that's about it. When we are at home? He gobbles whatever we give him - for example, he LOVED the meen molee from Monday. Of course, I primarily cook South Indian and specifically, Keralite, at home. X verily beamed with pride when I pointed this out to him. I don't know which was sweeter, the Malayalee pride bursting forth from X or watching Arun steadily shove pieces of fish in his mouth.
So, I finished the book Mommy Wars. It was a great read! However, approach this book like you would one on religion. I suspect Both Parties come away from this book believing even more fervently in their point of of view. I wanted to read it to get the perspective of women who continue to pursue careers in conjunction with motherhood. I expected that I would feel wistful towards my "working" days, but I did not. I see this time with Arun as temporary - before I know it he will be in pre-school, then kindergarten, then high-school and then just plain gone. For the first time in my life, I feel like what I am doing really matters and this is a lesson I am taking to heart. While Arun is growing up, I am viewing this time as a personal sabbatical for me to figure out what I will do next. For damned sure, I don't want to go back to software development, data security or anything accounting related. I want to do something that makes a Difference. I have some ideas, but nothing for sure and I am not in a hurry. This plan also worked out quite well for my step-mother, so I have a good example to follow. She just recently pushed her career in a new direction, finished her Master's this year and just accepted a brand-new position in this new career that she is very excited about - all after staying home for nearly 15 years. My sister is in college and my brother is almost done with high school, so the timing was right for her. I think there is a lot of negativity towards women stepping out of a career path for a long time and the attitude is "all is lost" at that point. My step-mother is a great example as to how it doesn't have to be that way. Anyway, for the most part the book was a great read, but I have to say that I am tired of women who combine a career with motherhood claiming they "have it all". Whatever. I resent the insinuation that just because I am a full-time mother, that I have somehow "given up" something. Furthermore, I have family members and friends who have chosen NOT to have children and I would consider the phrase "having it all" to be mildly insulting to them as well since it implies they can NEVER "have it all" because they won't ever have children. One other thing about this book was the viewpoint was a bit narrow since most of the "working" moms are in the writing/publishing field - it was hard for me to relate to this career path. I came from the technology/accounting field where there was not a lot of flexibility - particularly, when dealing with clients. For example, while working at the Fed, many, many times I would be packing up my laptop to head out the door and we would get a call that a server couldn't be accessed. If I had a child, this would be a bad situation because either I would have to pick up my child late OR there would be a Fed sitting around twiddling their thumbs waiting for me to dash home. Nobody would win in that situation. I briefly toyed with the "part-time" work situation because I could have pushed the Fed's so-called Family Friendly party line (hee hee - I canNOT type that without laughing! hee hee hee), but after I had to CANCEL a pre-natal doctor's appointment at the last minute, I knew I would never stay at the Fed for that kind of crap. But here's the thing, I can't entirely blame the Fed because that was the nature of the job - servers go down and need to be brought back up. Children or not, a job must be done. Bah. I could go on and on, but there is no point to it.
Anyway........Moving on to fun stuff.......Snappage...........
One Skein Faux Fair Isle Hat
Updated to Add:
In a beautiful bit of Irony, Goofy Girl sent me this old email from my first week at the Fed -- September 2003. What I love most is my sweet naïveté actually thinking I was going to get to finally work 40 hours a week. Months later when I was transferred to another department and was traveling while working odd hours due to a little project known as Check 21, the resentment rose like a bile, folks.
To: Goofy Girl
Subject: Recap - First 40 Hour Week as a Federal Government Employee
Well, the first week has gone well. I am almost used to encountering high ranking females (Officers, no less!) in the bathroom - I realized on Monday that I had actually forgotten what it was like to have women to look up to. Anyway, here we go:
1. Food is a religion here and the subsidized cafeteria on the 10th floor is its temple. Nearly everyone I have encountered has expounded upon the virtues of the omelet station offered on Friday. I live in fear that someone will discover that I don't like omelets and I will be forever marked as "that girl".
2. I am almost done expecting a piece of cheese in my cube each morning after navigating 2 city blocks of footwork, a maze of metal detectors, card readers, secured turn-stiles, and a bank of 9 elevators in my daily arduous journey to the 17th floor . At least I feel safe working for an organization that has an entire department named Protection.
3. I am beginning to feel at ease with the 1970s decor on my floor and have quit expecting to see Lou Grant peek around the corner. I am even a little less resentful of the other floors that apparently had a "renovations" line item in their annual budget.
4. Our intranet rocks! Unlike Blocknet, you can actually find things on it and the color scheme is not damaging to your retinas. The daily dining menu is the first link on the right hand corner (refer to #1 above) and I have a schedule of all the TV shows that will be featuring the new $20 bill to be released on October 9th. You know you wanna know, right? I don't think they are giving out samples, though. Darn.
5. I have the unique opportunity to join the Photography Club OR the illustrious Knitting Club. Actually, the knitting club looks cool and is doing a good service - they knit caps for chemo patients. Hey, don't laugh - Julia Roberts is knitter!
6. Sadly, even here I must report the evil United Way has burrowed its head in like a Lyme disease-bearing tick.
7. Yes, it is a deadzone here after 4:30pm and the 40 Hour Week is an institution. However, these people are actually working and they come in at the buttcrack of dawn. Other than the mad dashes to the cafeteria for the daily snack special at 2:00 pm (again, refer to #1) and despite the plethora of cubicle toys that my nephew would sell his baby brother for - there is really very little goofing off. These people have jobs to do and are determined to do it in 40 hours, if possible. I was even in a meeting where there were concerns with having people to work on a project after 8pm, so they moved some tasks to the following morning. What a concept!
Anyway, jokes aside. It is pretty good here and I am learning a ton of new things and revisiting a lot of old stuff. I am so happy to be getting back into this. I am also glad to be back downtown. My first whiff of stale coffee with a hint of truck fumes brought back so many fond memories from DST and EY.