There is nothing quite so satisfying as practical wisdom.
While I suppose it’s presumptuous to call myself “wise,” I can at least admit honestly that I found several occasions this week that called for some practical application of knowledge and somehow I got it right!
And in the spirit of being practical, I need to be quick about this because I’m late to publish and I have a list of things to do yet after this post. So let’s be about the business of thankfulness, shall we?First, as it is Memorial Day weekend here, I am thankful for the men and women who serve our country and who have given their lives for the freedoms and safety we enjoy. I know many servicemen and women – as do we all – and it is only since I have my own family that I feel like I really appreciate the sacrifices of them and their families.
I am thankful that over the years I have learned a trick or two in the kitchen. And when I don’t know the trick to use, I know where to turn for an answer. The Hub helped me with Soup of the Week several days ago, reading ingredients and measurements to me while I did the hands-on work. I was thankful for his help since I was having a very rough time processing that evening.
All seemed fine until we hit the measurement for black pepper in the soup. It seemed…wrong. I questioned him. He looked again – twice – and confirmed that the Tablespoon he quoted was absolutely correct.
I believed him.
When we sat down to eat, Zilla commented right away that the soup was too peppery. (My little chef!) I told her it was no different than any other time we’ve had that soup (our favorite easy cream of tomato) because it was the very same recipe. But it really did taste…wrong. So the Hub pulled up the recipe and checked the measurements on the pepper. Turns out the Tablespoon was supposed to have been a teaspoon…I knew it! So I was kind of thankful that my instincts turned out to be correct – I knew the ratio of salt to pepper in the thing could not be equal. No way.
Rather than waste the soup (I hate food waste), I needed a solution to counteract the pepper. Bringing additional cream to the tomato soup party worked fairly well. Yay again for the practical knowledge that the creamy base of the soup would help to balance the pepper. It wasn’t perfect, but it was better.
On Soup of the Week night #2, I went looking for another way to solve the pepper problem. I hit the Internet food forums and found confirmation to what I already suspected was true – in some cases, the addition of sweet to something too peppery can work. I added some shredded carrots and some fabulous Vermont maple syrup balsamic vinegar to the soup. A definite success! So I was again thankful for a practical solution, as well as the fact that the food did not go to waste.
Sadly, we did have to waste a dragon fruit that got too old this week. Zilla and I bought a dragon fruit several days ago and when we cut it to eat the other day…it wasn’t quite right. Looked OK, tasted wrong. Drawing on the practical wisdom of “when in doubt, throw it out,” we tossed it as well as some tabbouleh that smelled a bit off. Note to self: eat fruit sooner and don’t leave tabbouleh so long before eating.
Then there was the car thing. Today when I got in the car to run some errands, the car did not feel quite right. I knew something was wrong and, long story short, suspected it was in need of power steering fluid. I asked my Brother-in-Law what he thought and he said the same. For the record, yes, I did consult the Fab Hub. However. While the man is indeed brilliant and I adore him completely, automobile basics are simply not within his area of practical knowledge. As my Grandfather used to say (and my Mom still does), “Half of being smart is knowing what you’re dumb at.” I’m thankful the Hub is not the kind of guy to get insulted that I called in another resource on this one.
Anyway, back to the car. A quick check of the level determined that it was indeed low. Zilla and I hit the auto parts store. I’m thankful that she was nicely behaved in there and and while I filled the reservoir. I’m thankful I didn’t spill said fluid all over the engine – in fact the gentleman topping off his engine fluids next to me in the lot admired my steady hand. I’m thankful that the problem is now corrected and the car is just fine.
I’m glad I went with my gut on this one because it turned out to be a very simple fix and cost just a few dollars rather than a costly repair.
I am thankful for hawk and blimp sightings while out and about with Zilla this week. Very cool to experience, but no photo evidence. Sorry. Hey, we were driving for crying out loud!
I am thankful for some good writing this week and for the wonderful feedback and response those pieces have received. Thanks to all of you who responded so heartily to my 1000Speak post and my Finish the Sentence Friday post this week.
I’m thankful to have (finally) found a summer handbag that meets my criteria for all-around everyday bag – neutral color, appropriate shade for summer, and big enough to fit all the extra crap Zilla and the Hub inevitably dump on me to carry in it. Oh, also? On sale, plus $10 off a purchase over a certain amount so I got it for $30 less than the original retail price. Win!
Wow, how odd is that image size? Which brings me to my next item… I am very thankful that my cell phone upgrade period flipped over and I have my new (free with renewed contract) phone in hand less than 24 hours after placing the order. Awesome.
And finally, the kind of big one. Zilla had a bit of a heartbreak this week and was more than a little bit sad. She came to me for comfort and we did just that – picked her favorite dinner, read her favorite storybooks, snuggled, and talked. As we talked, she told me how she felt and why and I offered her what I hoped were comforting words as well as practical suggestions for future situations.
Oh how I wished I could take that sad away from her I can’t! I know that. But somehow – and Lord knows I have no idea how – I managed to find the words to get her through it. The only reasonable answer is that I drew from the same words spoken to me by my Mom and my Grandparents in similar situations. I’m thankful that I found the words and that she seems to be quite a bit better today, already. This was a big sting. Big. But I am thankful that she is smart and resilient and I’m sure she’ll get through it OK. (I’ll be checking with my Mom about this one, though, just to make sure I did it right.)
I am thankful for a lazy day in our PJs today to start the long weekend. I am thankful that Zilla had a lovely “spa night” in our jet tub this evening and is now sleeping peacefully. I am thankful that there were leftovers for dinner. I’m thankful Cat One is feeling better (he was WAY sick this week). And I’m thankful that the Hub is being patient while I write this. He’s waiting to continue a PC game we started earlier this week. I guess I’m thankful that he introduced me to these games of his and helped me find my inner geek?
And that, friends, is the end of my list for this week.
Your turn: What are you thankful for this week? What practical wisdom do you rely upon when you need it? When is the last time you saw a blimp?
You know the drill – share ’em or link ’em!