Chicken Cutlet Night


Not that this is exclusive to November or anything, but we’ve just had Chicken Cutlet* Night and it was glorious – a perfect cap to an otherwise pretty awesome day.

Today marked the start of my winter farmer’s market, which was super-busy and had an amazing energy that made me excited about life.  The situation there was such that I am genuinely looking forward to sacrificing sleeping in on every Saturday morning so I can work the old family chicken n’ eggs booth.

Besides the great energy, there were oodles of tasty local foods and stuff which I will spend the next several months sampling and purchasing at a rate of $20 per week (self-imposed spending limit lest I go bananas), spread around to various vendors.

Today I got parsnips, swiss chard and brussels sprouts (that looked like JINGLE BELLS no less) from a veggie stand, and a creamy jalepeno cheese spread from Naragansett Creamery (really very delicious), along with a loaf of sourdough bread (and okay, a brownie) from Seven Stars.

coolest looking vegetable ever, and delicious too

PLUS I got free half-empty jars of condiments from a vendor who had opened the jars for sampling (Mustard & Dill dipping sauce = AMAZING!)

After that I got to hang out with a cute puppy while drinking a (FREE!) chai and peruse the mall (but NOT buy anything!  No-buy-vember still on!) and then it was home for Chicken Cutlet Night.

We made oven roasted brussels sprouts, parsnip chips and chicken cutlets. We used Emeril’s recipe for fried chicken, which we know from experience is phenomenal, but we replaced cut-up chicken parts with thinly pounded chicken cutlets.  They were significantly easier to cook and still awfully delicious.  Also, everything else was delicious too.

Now I am actually going to leave my house AGAIN after 10:00 pm to go to a place that serves alcohol and has people in it.  Crazy.

This November is starting out great, what with the writing, the not buying things, the promise of lots of beards to come and Chicken Cutlet Night.  I have high hopes for it as a month in general. I cannot wait for the other amazing things I get to buy and/or cook after next week’s farmer’s market – I am definitely eying cranberries and sausages for next time.

Seriously, the anticipation is palpable.

Oh – and other highlights for things that happen in November since today is the last day of Things That Happen in November Week:

  • a variety of birthdays, like Lauren’s and Gabby’s and Allison’s and Canadian super star Bryan Adams
  • Thanksgiving, a holiday which I always appreciate and enjoy
  • My first year getting to miss the Thanksgiving Feast at school, which is really something to be Thankful for
  • the start of Holiday Season, which I would maintain is the most wonderful time of the year

happy birthday and thanks for the songs


*or as Tessa calls it now, “chicky chicky chicky chick”




So many things about today were pleasant, it’s difficult to know where to begin.

Which is false –  it is actually quite easy to know where to begin since most of the pleasantness springs from one simple thing: THE WEATHER!

It has finally happened, friends.  The shift from that soul sucking end-of-summer lingering, yet unwanted hot/humid weather to that gorgeous, sparkling, joyous, crisp, cool, sunny fall stuff that I love so much.  I genuinely believe that my body and soul draw power from lovely autumnal weather much as Superman draws his strength from the sun.

Because of the weather, I had a lovely time working the farmer’s market this morning despite dismal sales.  I saw about ten kagillion of my students there since I do the market in the town where I work.  Oftentimes I do not enjoy seeing students outside of school, but in this case I was expecting it, plus they were getting their faces painted and enjoying themselves so much that I was pretty okay with it.

At the farmer’s market I also got a hot dog, a dough boy, and (free) cotton candy.  Score.

Plus, I saw one of the cutest, sweetest, smartest, nicest students I have (and probably will ever have) holding cotton candy and smiling and petting the cutest dog ever (black lab/border collie mix, holy crap!).  At one point he knelt down on the ground so the dog could lick his face, which made him giggle.  CUTEST THING EVER.

it was cuter than this bunny. maybe not.

And I got to drive the farm’s behemoth of a van to the market today.  I tell you what – if you’ve never driven a vehicle roughly comparable in size to a small U-Haul or a Hummer, you should.  You feel powerful and important and when the van goes over rolling bumps in the road, it bounces up and down in the most carnival-ride-esque way.

After I got home and took an accidental nap for two hours, I took a nice brisk walk to Thayer Street and bought a chai and walked around looking at all the happy people in their fall clothes.

I arrived home to discover that both Alex Day AND Charlie McDonnell posted new Youtube videos today, even though my Youtube subscription box said no such thing.  Delightful!

And finally, I learned from Twitter that young adult author and major life-inspiration  John Green’s first car was a blue 1991 Volvo 240 (while mine was a 1990 but otherwise the same).  He saw one, apparently, and almost wept, which is still my reaction to old blue Volvos.  I cannot even tell the story about when I traded it in because I get choked up.  There are tears in my eyes right now as I type about it, in fact, but I nonetheless like discovering things that I have in common with John Green.

Lynette the Volvo - gone but not forgotten.

I now intend to clean my kitchen, make Kraft Spirals for dinner, read my Martha Stewart LIVING October issue and probably watch something fantastically fall-ish, like When Harry Met Sally or Little Women or Robin Hood (all of which span seasons yet have a distinctly autumnal quality that makes for the best watching during this time of year).

Really, the pleasantness of the day is out of control.

Meanwhile, suggestions for next week’s theme?  Leave them for me, please, because I have a couple I am saving up but am not sure that I want to start them tomorrow!

Puppies! Inspired by Puppies!


My brain is totally on puppy mode.  24/7 puppies.  All puppies all the time.  Puppies, puppies, puppies!  Gonna throw a puppy party!

pigeon, you are my soulmate

Seriously, the very worst place to spend time when you really want a puppy but cannot have a puppy is a farmer’s market.

(I will own that, okay, dog rescue or pet store or puppy farm could perhaps be a little worse.)

In my three weeks as a farmer’s market vendor, I have already decided on several different brands of puppy that I would like to have after losing my head over several random strangers’ dogs.  Also, I know that puppies come in breeds, not brands but I can’t seem to stop saying it wrong these days and even typed it wrong before I could stop myself.

For the coming week, our theme will be not just puppies but Pretend PuppiesMy pretend puppies – I have several, specific breeds with names to match and different lives to go with them – your pretend puppies if you have any picked out that you want to share them with me because I will totally post them, also fictional puppies, puppies pretending to be other things…

Oh, it is going to be an action-packed week.

Pretend Puppy Week.

Wait for it.

p.s. This is my new desktop backdrop:

omg omg omg omg omg