8:29 pm: Jet is now in his exer-saucer just dancing up a storm. He's bouncing and bashing things with both arms and making the springs go wild. His legs are strong enough for him to stand up now, and he's jumping with them full force so all his weight's coming down on the webbing making for some terrific bounces from the suspension of the saucer. It's been a while since he's been in it, so his capabilities in it are unexpectedly extreme. It's pretty impressive to see him dancing from foot to foot and then jumping up with both feet to come down full force. It's shaking the floor just a little bit.
He's spent most of today being really happy. John and I are pretty trashed, though John's getting better, I ignored the cold long enough that it's really hammering me today. I'm just tired and headachy and something caught both John's and my digestive systems unawares and it's been mildly rough that way.
But we got things done today. John got the hotel for OryCon and a car. Seems that the hotel isn't filling quite as fast as it has in previous years. I also found out that the con is offering child care with bonded nannies that can take care of just so many kids, so there will be someone we can pay money to to take Jet for periods of time if we wish to be without him for some panel or seminar or something. I don't know if we'll be using that much, but it's good to know that it's there.
Jet napped from about noon to 1:30, and in that time John got to do things outside while I organized last month's entries and got caught up on all the entries at the beginning of this month. Since I've been pretty good about writing every evening for the last week or so, there were only two or three entries I had to write. The rest I loaded into text files on the home machine and did some spell checking before Jet woke up. I managed to clean up last months entries and put the index for last month into place as well.
Then I went down and nursed Jet and we went off on an outing for the day. John had asked how I wanted to celebrate getting the main body of work done yesterday, and I'd answered 'With chicken wings and Dairy Queen." He'd replied, "You know I just love your expensive tastes. You're just so high maintenance." Gales of giggles.
We first, however, loaded all our recycling into the Baby Buggy, along with grocery bags, diaper bag, and Jet. We really like the Longmont recycling center. It takes everything the Boulder center takes, but it doesn't bother to have anyone sort the containers. Tin, aluminum, plastic, milk cartons, and all colors of glass all go into one bin, and since that's what we do at home, it makes it really, really easy. They do have all the paper types sorted into bins, and the cardboard all in one mountain in one corner of the lot. So it's really easy to unload everything. There is never more than two other cars or trucks there, unlike the Boulder facility which usually doesn't have parking. So there aren't crowds of people to dodge.
The real change is in the attitude of the people that are there. In Longmont nearly everyone looks a little furtive, not quite sure if they want to be seen there. In Boulder there's definitely a nose in the air attitude about doing the morally superior thing. It's pretty astonishing the difference.
So we were in and out of there pretty quickly, and then on to the Wing Hut. It was pretty cold out. We ordered our food, found a spot out of the wind and sat out there for a while to wait for our food. Those who have known John and I for a while know that we have matching mukluks, those ear flapped fur hats that are extra warm and look kind of silly. Walt and Cathie gave Jet one just like the one we have, so we strapped that on him to keep him warm.
When the wings came they kept us pretty warm. Jet got a carrot stick to suck on, happily, while we ate the bright orange wings messily. They were crisply fried, and the sauce was so vinegary I coughed before I took my first bite. They tasted wonderful and were just the right amount of spicy. We inhaled those wings, along with a few fries, the carrot and celery sticks, and our pops. As we ate elegantly dressed wedding folks wandered by on the way to their reception and quite a few of them gave smiles to the Mongolian looking Jet with two parents covered with Buffalo wing sauce.
Safeway had a sale on whole pork loins. 15-20 pounds of meat in one package. It was too intimidating for me, so I only bought half a loin for a bit less money than a whole one would have been. We also stocked up on the usual ingredients, and when we went to check out the lady behind the counter said that the butchers would slice it up for me if I wanted them to. With innocent bravado I said, no, I want to do it.
When I got home and actually got it taken apart, I peered at it and said, "I should have taken advantage of that offer." The bones of the spine and back were still there, and at bad angles to the bones of the ribs. I'd assumed that I could just follow the ribs and cut slabs that way, I hadn't know that the whole other set of bones were still in it. It would pretty much take a meat saw to do that. So, instead of making it into bone-in chops, which I prefer, I had to debone the whole center section and then make eight boneless chops, a rack of ribs, and a pile of meat for ground pork. It's still a lot of meat, but I'm very glad I didn't go for the whole loin.
I also bought a gallon of milk, made curds with rennet and citric acid and attempted what Tyler Florence did on TV. I didn't have the same luck he did. I think my water, at first, wasn't hot enough, and so I basically grated a handful of the curd into curds that were so small, they were pretty much cheddared. One can't really form the strands needed for mozzarella from cheddared curds. I then tried pretty much boiling the dipping water. I guess the altitude lowers the temperature so much that the ambient temp of a pot of simmering water is actually just about 170 degree Fahrenheit. Just on the edge of being 'hot enough' to melt the curds enough to taffy pull them. It was a whole lot of work doin@ that with the hot water. I finally ended up doing half of it with hot water and half of it in the microwave.
The half from the microwave actually had better texture than the stuff I did in hot water. I think part of it was that I didn't cook it for quite as long as the instructions said. They were both a bit chalky, though, so I don't know what I'm doing wrong, but it might well be the usage of the acid as well as the rennet. Something about my ingredients isn't doing the right thing for a soft mozzarella.
Both John and I were having mild stomach problems, so pork ribs or a roast just weren't in the cards. Instead, we heated the leftover brown rice from the China Gourmet, added the mild fish chunks, and had some cheese and tomatoes and basil on the side. I know, the latter isn't all that easy to digest, but it is pretty mild, especially compared to chops.
Jet than has his incredibly good time in his exersaucer, and we had a good evening watching baseball. Jet had an odd quest to touch the light switch above my right shoulder while he was supposed to be nursing. Once he explored the switch enough to his content, he relaxed, ate, and fell asleep on his own. Given that he slept in until 7:30 this morning, it's a good thing.
I gotta feed the pork scraps to the food processor, then I get to go to sleep. Whew..