Weekend Tea: Gumbo (Open Forum)

MIne won't look this. :(

MIne won’t look this. :(

I’m trying to take some much needed downtime this weekend. Last week was just a shitstorm of tragedy and tooth extraction.   I making gumbo today. I’ve had a bag of frozen okra in my freezer forever and yet it seems to have disappeared on the day I actually need it. Why does that always seem to happen?

I treated myself to a pricey trip to Whole Foods yesterday. I felt like I just needed some good food in the house. I bought a couple of their fancy sausages. It’s great for singles because you can buy one really nice fresh sausage for two dollars instead of buying a packaged of processed crap

I found a LOT of pictures when I google "neighbor destroying garden."

I found a LOT of pictures when I google “neighbor destroying garden.”

My asshole gaybor  ( My LGBT love does not extend to him. I totally would exchange him out for any of the Orlando victims if I could)  has poor grass killer of some sort all down my flower bed between my driveway and the fence. Just another bad thing to add to a shitty week.

I am going to watch things I don’t have to recap and continue to veg out and wait for my fish stock to come together. While that is going on I will read some recipes for Gumbo online. I must be the only person in the world who starts cooking and THEN peruses recipes.

(Sidenote to Mary, there are some folks talking about their divorces after decades in the Jules Wainstein divorce comments that you might take comfort in and not feel so alone. It seems to happen with some frequency. I hope you are coping.)

So what is going on in your neck of the woods?

125 Comments

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125 responses to “Weekend Tea: Gumbo (Open Forum)

  1. Whyowhy

    That gumbo sounds great, TT!

    After this last week, I need a dang vacation. In addition to Orlando, a coworker took his life on Wednesday night and the more I think about it, the sadder I get.

    I think we all need a giant group hug.

    I am determined to make next week better. Trip to the farmers market and I’m buying myself some flowers. Friday, I have a girls night date with my BFF to see The Free State of Jones… mmmmm, Matthew McConaughey.

    I’m also starting to plan the redesign of my backyard, including putting in a pool (says the girl who lives in California and has water restrictions….) I can’t wait to plant flowers and new (doggie safe) grass! Of course completion is at least a year away.

    I hope you are all having a great weekend.

    • tamaratattles

      WhyOhWhy indeed. Sunflowers are super cheap and abundant around here. I bought a five stem bouquet at Kroger for $6. I also treated myself to everything I even thought I might want at Whole Foods yesterday. The massacre thing made me think twice about being so very frugal. That said it will be feast this month and famine next but I’m good with that. I’ve decided to let the gumbo sort of simmer a few more hours now that most everything is in the same pot. I’ve also sort of lost my appetite from all the tasting so the shrimp won’t be added until tomorrow just before I dig in. I’ll have a few more healthy sized tasting tonight. I was only using my Andouille sausage (one link) and as usual I am now making a huge amount. So I am currently cooking the chorizo to add in. Am I the only one who pulls the casing off and lets the guts swim around in the gumbo? I don’t understand eating the casings. It I would not eat it by itself, it doesn’t go in my gumbo.

      I blather on to say, Life is short! buy the flowers! splurge at that Farmers Market.

      • SaraSally

        I thought your were to cook with the casing so the flavor doesn’t overtake the other ingredients. Upon completion, remove casings & stir in with other ingredients.

    • Miele

      I’m so sorry about your coworker, WhyOWhy. I’m glad you’ve got plans in place to make next week better. I’m going to try to follow your lead in that determination. The backyard redesign sounds amazing!

    • Cara

      Honey, a suicide affects us in so many ways, for a long time. Please let yourself feel the grief and the anger, and please know that you are NOT alone. I am so sorry.

      • WhyOWhy

        Thank you all. It was just so shocking. No one had any inkling that something was wrong… I guess that’s how it usually is, though.

        TT, I love sunflowers. We planted some on the balcony of my office, along with some poppies. I can’t wait for them to bloom. I am so looking forward to the farmers market on Tuesday so I can buy some flowers to brighten up my office.

        In soups, I don’t use sausage with the casings. It’s just kind of weird. Also, I’m the same way. I get full from tasting and then don’t want to eat. hahaha

    • SaraSally

      So sorry for your loss. I hope your workplace is handling the staff needs with sensitivity. Again, I’m very sorry.

  2. Awesome that you are looking after yourself! ..hmm..in my “neck of the woods” …slight drizzle..which is awesome..cuz..the rain is protecting our trees…

    and yup..I am a huge tree lover!..anyways..

    I am preparing the dish I make best..spaghetti sauce…this is our big meal of the day..we are getting ready to watch 3 awesome hours of UFC tonite!!

  3. marc

    Have you seen the O.j. in America documentary ? Not asking you to recap but most definitely worth watching ! FEEL BETTER & HUG BANJO

    • Shar Woods

      I have been watching OJ:Made in America this week and director Ezra Edelman did an excellent job of placing the Simpson trial in the context of race relations in L.A. at the time. Edelman was able to persuade many people from both the prosecution and defense to spill secrets. Although *i watched the entire trial on TV, there were many details brought up in this 10-hour documentary that were not publicized at the time. For example, OJ stopped taking his arthritis medicine for several weeks prior to trying on the infamous glove to ensure that his hands would swell and the glove would definitely not fit. Anyone interested in the criminal justice system would find this program engrossing.

      • Carie

        OJ:Made in America is really an eye-opener! Edelman did a brilliant job. Everyone should watch, especially those who supported him during the trial.

    • tamaratattles

      I caught episode two. Charter apparently does not update all of their on demand channels unless you use it a lot or something. You have to TELL them and so ESPN is not updated for me at all and I am sick of telling them what I need updated.

    • Miele

      Such a great suggestion!!! I’d forgotten all about that documentary!

      • WhyOWhy

        I wanted to watch it. Hopefully, they replay it, Dish Network’s OnDemand isn’t the greatest. It’s hard to find anything. Or at least, I haven’t figures out how to use it properly… I’ve only had Dish for 10 years. LOL

  4. rebecca

    I’m sorry to hear about the neighbor and your flower bed, TT. I would be furious.

    It’s hot and humid here, and I’m hunkered down watching the U.S. Open golf. No plans to cook anything with it being this hot, unfortunately. We’re forecast for rain to help it cool off, so hopefully that will arrive soon.

    I’m ready to give up on my tomato plant, I’m afraid. It has been attacked by fungus and nearly every tomato that turns slightly red is eaten by birds before I can get it, so I’m feeling a bit discouraged about it. I’ll try again in the fall.

    I hope your gumbo is delicious and you enjoy some continued R&R this weekend.

    • tamaratattles

      I’m having some problems with my veggies as well. I am now starting to suspect the evil gaybor. Someone on FB forwarded me a story about handing red Christmas ornaments on your cage to discourage the birds. I have a ton of birds and no problems from them. I saw the most AMZAZING redheaded woodpecker in my front yard today. It’ in the tree that the dead squirrel used to live in with his love interest. He or she seems to have moved on. :( I’ve watch those to squirrel play and screw for years. :(

      • WhyOWhy

        Dang squirrel was taunting the dog this morning. I could hear it out the window chittering away at him as he ran the length of the fence.

  5. Puddy

    The gumbo looks great, and is so admired by a kitchen klutz like me (who keeps sweaters in her stove – footnote to “Sex and the City”). I microwaved oatmeal and a soft-boiled egg.. burned my hand watching a “Southern Charm” rerun! (Burns mean anger! and hearing Landon say she never did anything to Kathryn got me mad! -;)) The past week has been so tragic for so many people..the incidents known to the public, and others local .. supposedly (astrologically) there was a grand cross in the sky.. lots of pressure.. Monday is supposed to be tough (I have made a vow not to engage) but things should start to get better (God willing) on the 26th and the 29th when Mars finally goes direct!

    • tamaratattles

      The pictures here are never mine. I just google one up. I am a luddite with no cell phone. Well there is one here somewhere but I could use the tiny keypad and have no idea where it is or what the phone number is. My gumbo is still simmering slowly on the stove. Smells great in here.

  6. Lisa j

    We are watching Heaven is for real. Much needed ray of light. Love you all 💗

  7. Pitypat

    My niece, who lives near Atlanta, says there is a Mac and Cheese festival there in Oct!
    Our school is out for the summer as of last Thursday, the little kids were crying as they left. Our Title 1 school is very poor and our kids love the structure and safety of school. Kinda sad, the good news is that I am off work for 2 months.

    • tamaratattles

      Oh the crying. I remember the crying. It was awful. My kids didn’t want to be off in the summer and didn’t want to move up a grade. I would go home and sob like a grieving widow. I would tell the guy I was dating at the time that I would never have a class as special as this one ever again.

      His reply? ” You say that every year.”

      • Dee

        Tamara, I wish I’d had a teacher like you. You are so gifted. You make my days bearable, bless you!

      • Sabrina

        What grade did you teach, Tamara/

      • tamaratattles

        Sabrina, the above situation was when I was teaching elementary school. Mostly second grade.

        I started my teaching career teaching 099 Reading (and sometimes writing, or journalism, or psychology…) Then High School for a harrowing year or two, then middle school. And I quit while teaching first grade. The administration is horrific at all levels. But I like college reading and second grade a lot.

    • Miele

      Awww! I remember the bittersweetness of the end of the school year.

      Do you have any fun or relaxing plans for your summer, Pitypat? Hopefully, you don’t have to spend most of it getting continuing ed/professional development hours (unless you find an awesome, fun one).

      • Pitypat

        No big plans. I want to teach son’s rescue puppy to walk with a harness. She either backs out of the collar or acts like I am pulling her head off. When I put the harness on, she lies down. We will accomplish this!

      • Miele

        Yay for rescue pup training! My dog was quite the escape artist when I first fostered her. I still have some hilarious memories of training her that first summer. Hope it goes smoothly!!

      • Pitypat, buy the puppy a Martingale collar; she won’t be able to back out of it. You can get them in pretty colors. Yay for you and your son for opening your hearts and home to a puppy who needs you.❤️🐶❤️

  8. Last night I had dinner in a Peruvian restaurant, and I was surprised to learn about the Creole & Mexican influences on the Peruvian cuisine.

    It was 3 of us and we ordered so many things. Absolutely delicious. We ate empanadas, seasoned pulled pork, potatoes stuffed with seasoned beef & onions, seasoned filet mignon strips, and a fish dish called pescado saltdado that was TO DIE FOR. Besides the platter of colorful peppers & onions, we had some grilled plantains, yuca in a cilantro cream sauce, sauteed soft corn nuts, and another corn dish called choclo that I think is similar to hominey…and then we ended our meal with a delicious dessert that is similar to an American jelly roll, but it was filled with the creamiest richest caramel I ever had.

    I was too full to try the ceviche with fish & mussels or the rotisserie chicken that I will try next time I go…. and don’t get me started on all the hot fine ass Latin men that were in the restaurant watching the futbol (soccer) game. Unfortunately their eye were lasered to the TV screen and didn’t notice my lust. Hay papi!

    • DarkThoughts

      UF, Peruvian men are the sexiest on earth. I don’t know what it is. If you are single, you must try one. Ahhh…this comment brings back so many great memories of a hubristic summer I spent at college when a girlfriend introduced me to a small group of Peruvian grad students here on student visas getting their MBA degrees.

      • You are right about Peruvian men, and I have dated/hooked up with a Peruvian before. All South American men are hot as hell. My ex was Venezuelan and the hottest guy I ever dated. My friends used to call me the slut of the United Nations because I gravitated towards guys from all over the world more than the American corn fed ones. But don’t get me wrong, I do love me some yankee doodle dandy.

      • tamaratattles

        I quite enjoyed extending my American welcome to a Venezuelan soccer player when I was a HS Senior/College Freshman. Definitely in the top two of hottest guys I ever…errr showed hospitality two. The other was a hot Italianish guy whose sister was a big shot cheerleader at my HS and I was an outcast (at my high school but no where else) our relationship broke up because…..wait for it…he would come pick me up and I would have to make him pull over before we got off the street so I could throw up. He was very patient with this for a long time because I used to be hot. But I could never get a grip on myself. :( I slept with his roommate after we broke up who was very attractive with no problem. It was weird. I do throw up a lot even now. It was my first reaction to the Orlando Massacre. My father was the same way.

    • tamaratattles

      I am so totally coming to live with you.

    • Dee

      UF, the description of your meal is scrumptious, I’m now hungry, thanks for sharing, yum!

  9. Tulsateacher

    Well, here in Tulsa it’s freaking hot and humid. I left the house only once to buy ice cream and now I’m watching it rain… My daughter is playing around with vegan recipes and we had black bean burgers for dinner and watched season one of The Office. I’ll probably finish off the night with a bath and an Ativan…

    • misery chick

      Did you watch the American “The Office”? If so, what did u think of ‘Diversity Day’? Felt awful about laughing, fell in total love/lust with Steve Carell-still going strong, much to my hubby’s chagrin 😌 SC was so fearless in that ep!

  10. Miele

    I’m hiding out here trying to get my thoughts in order. Spent most of Thursday and almost all of Friday sidelined on the couch as my legs decided to take some time off. Feeling a little better today, thankfully.

    I’m afraid right now and wishing for civil law reform. I need to do something about my former boss, but the lawyers are basically saying their hands are tied unless he shows up or I catch him following me again. He took my picture. I’m concerned about what he’s going to do with it. He and his lawyer lied about the entire encounter of his lying in wait for me at my new office space, but I fortunately have witnesses. I’m so sick of this process and just want to have a completely clean break from him. I don’t know why he’s so obsessed, but I wish I didn’t need to wait for a second incident to get a restraining order of some sort. I live alone, in a very secure building and have a dog, but still. I’m very worried and feel no one is taking it seriously enough.

    Anyway, I’m hiding away from my reality here in the comments this weekend. As always, I’m so glad that I found this site.

    Thanks for all you do for us, TT!

    • WhyOWhy

      Miele, please stay safe! I hope you are able to get a restraining order before something else happens, and God forbid, I hope nothing else happens. There has to be something you can do other than hiding or waiting for the next incident. Maybe a vacation is in order, if you can make that happen. Or if not a vacation, but get away for a little while.

      • Miele

        Thank you, WhyOWhy. I am going to be as safe as possible. I think I’ve found stalking statutes that will apply given the ambush and the subsequent messages sent from his lawyer to mine… Going to round up documentation tonight as best I can (one message involves my mother who lives in a different state). A friend is taking me to the Military Surplus store tomorrow to get pepper spray, so that will help. I got fired six months ago today; I have no clue why he’s acting like Frollo from Hunchback of Notre Dame… Oh well.

        I have my annual vacation to San Diego planned for about a month from now, but you’re right, I might go away for a few days next weekend. If I can get my dog and cat in for their shots tomorrow, instead of next Saturday, I may go see a couple of friends out in LA next weekend, health permitting.

        Thank you all for letting me vent here.

      • tamaratattles

        I love that you vent here. I am amused when y’all say things like that. Because this site, as much as the technical shit and some comments annoy the fuck out of me, y’all are my lifeline. So thanks to all of y’all for letting me vent here. xo ~tt

      • Dee

        Tamara, I hope your gumbo is delicious! We take the casing off too. Mary we’re thinking of you, hope you’re doing a little better, baby steps. My tomatoes are now tennis ball size. I’m excited, can’t wait. Now I’m looking for Christmas Balls to hang :) Have I mentioned how much I love this forum and all the comments? Be safe everyone! Dee

    • Oh my god please do what you can to ensure some peace of mind & safety. From my experience with stalkers its all about control & ego. Keep making police reports because this needs to be memorialized to establish a pattern of stalking behavior, and by doing that it should make it easier to get a restraining order.

      • Miele

        Thank you, UF. You’re so right about control and ego. Now that I know I can file an incident report based on his false messages, I’m doing that tomorrow morning at first light. I wish these types of reports could be filed online, but alas.

        Thank you all for your support! It means so much to me!

    • Miele, so sorry you are going through this.

    • JustJenn

      That’s scary..stay safe. I have a similar situation going on with a neighbor right now and was finally able to get a restraining order after a year, but he’s a cop so law enforcement just blew off his stalking and harassment when they were called. I had a whole post ready to go on here about it, but deleted it as I didn’t want to go into too much detail.

      Anyway good luck, and there are many organizations willing to help if you run into trouble with the legal system and some will even go with with you to file the papers. Having the order in place is not only best for your safety, but also good for your peace of mind.

      • Miele

        Oh my goodness, JustJenn. That’s so crazy. Hopefully you’ve been able to find some peace of mind now that you’ve got the restraining order? I totally understand not wanting to go into too much detail in a post. You stay safe and vigilant as well. It creeps me out that my creep lives in my area of town- I can’t imagine having him as a neighbor. I’m so sorry.

        Thank you for the advice. I’ve got all of my stuff ready to file the new incident reports in the morning (I’ve already filed for the in-person ambush incident). I’ll post in here and let folks know how it goes.

      • WhyOWhy

        Miele, San Diego sounds just wonderful! I hate that I haven’t been there in at least 10 years. I usually don’t make it any further south than Disneyland! LOL. I am definitely a northern California girl.

        Good that you are getting everything together. Document, document, document!

      • Miele

        WhyOhWhy- Yes, I love going out to San Diego each year to see some of my best friends and (because I’m a dork) to go to San Diego Comic-Con. It’s the one vacation I’ve allowed myself in recent years (though I’m not sure if it fully counts as I work during the show and see an orthopedist out there.) I need to get to CA more often and to more parts, especially to escape this TX heat…

      • Minky

        Good God JustJenn. I’m sorry to hear that too. Everybody’s been having such a tough time lately. It’s crazy. Stay safe. Sometimes cops can be the worst.

        Did I mention that one of my loud, obnoxious, drunk ass neighbors is a cop? I have nothing against cops in general. Just the schmuck who lives next-door to me.

    • SaraSally

      Miele… Document everything. Everything. Date, time, place, who & witnesses to any All exchanges. Everything.

    • JustJenn

      It has given me peace of mind so far. He’s left everyone alone since he’s been served this last week, and now law enforcement has to respond if he breaks the order. I’m still a little nervous because the things that he has done over the past year prove him to be unstable, but the order has worked so far.

    • JustJenn

      I’ll be waiting for your update

    • Dee

      Miele, my thoughts are with you. I tried to respond last night but was unable to. I hope in the light of day things are not as scary. If they are, please report it.

    • Puddy

      Miele, I am so sorry that you have been going through this. This is so wrong and unfair that this man is doing this to you. As others here have suggested – a woman in this kind of situation needs a restraining order, as soon as possible, to protect her. That way, if he gets anywhere near you, you can have him arrested right away. It sounds like you could maybe also sue him for harassment. In addition – his behavior seems proof that you were wrongfully fired by him from your last job. Can you sue your former employer? Can you have a friend/family member stay with you until you obtain the restraining order? Maybe get and train with a guard dog (German Shepherd) that is trained to protect you? My thoughts and prayers are with you.

      • Miele

        Thank you, Puddy!

        I am working on being safe, and I might have someone come stay with me for a bit if I don’t feel any safer…

        So herein is where the plot thickens, we actually are in civil litigation but because *they* are suing *me* for non-competition (although he orally waived that agreement- and mentioned what a huge favor he was doing me by doing so several times- in that meeting AND I have a recording of the entire thing…). He’s simply rabid. I wanted to just leave there and go my own way and wasn’t even going to pursue any of the various claims I had/have against the company (including sexual harassment,creation of hostile work environment, disparate treatment, ADA violations, etc.). He explicitly said in the meeting that I could go work for a competitor or go work for myself. I emailed asking for that provision (and an agreement not to contest my unemployment) to be added to the eight-page separation agreement, and none of the people in the meeting responded. They fired me in December and filed their bogus suit in February. They’ve persisted even after losing their hearing for a temporary injunction against my business. He has no integrity. And now he’s threatened or whatever by my business.

        But he also seems personally obsessed with me. Which is weird bc we were NEVER involved outside of our professional capacities… And that’s actually making getting traction more difficult…

        I’ll do an overall update below.

      • Minky

        That is just awful Miele. It’s gonna take time, but this too shall pass. And I’m so sorry about WhoOhWhy’s coworker. Life is a damn mess sometimes. It’s hard to get through the day and just be able to look at things and people without getting saddened and sickened to your core. Me heart and prayers go out to both of you.

    • Miele

      UPDATE: Yes, I’m still alive and feel a lot better!

      I have everything in order now and have filed incident reports for the messages as well. I have an appointment to meet with an officer on Tuesday to discuss the next steps for escalating this process (and giving my attorneys for the civil suit a day to catch up and weigh in- though they may be getting fired soon).

      The officer at the main station today was very helpful and kind and was the first official person to take me seriously regarding how unsafe this whole thing has made me feel…He was also impressed by my record-keeping.

      I remembered that today was supposed to be errand Sunday, so I had to forego the pepper spray trip. However, my friend went for me and is meeting me at lunchtime tomorrow to let me pick from the ones she picked up today. That was very, very nice of her. I’m going to try to cross-stitch her a small gift tonight. In order to get my home and business errands done, I took advantage of all the “buy online, pick up in store” options that I could and I got most everything squared away with minimal time out in public. AND I’m home before dark.

      I’m also feeling better physically than I have in a few days, so that is helping. Before this whatever took over my body, I was always a badass. So it’s especially hard for me to feel so physically and emotionally vulnerable. But having y’all helps me SOOOOO very much.

      I went ahead and told my insanely protective younger brother who lives here about what all is going on. He said he’s going to just pop in to my office space throughout this week (he works third shift and lives just a few blocks away from my office) and wants me to let him know if I ever need anything after dark, so that he can go get it or come escort me. I was honestly concerned that he might start talking crazy because I have a very tight-knit family and we do not respond well to people messing with one of us, but he’s been very level-headed and mature. I hate to bother him because he has a wife and two kids, but I’m glad I let him know.

      Okay, that’s it from me. THANK YOU ALL SO VERY, VERY MUCH for your words of wisdom, encouragement, thoughts, and prayers!!!!!! It’s so very appreciated.

      And thank you again, TT, for creating this safe space! :)

      • Minky

        I’m glad you seem to be having a better day. That “feeling” you’ve been experiencing in your body is depression. Obviously this situation is taking its toll on you. Try to relax as much as you can. If you have to live in fear, the bastards win.

      • Miele

        Thanks, Minky. I had to remind myself that I’m not as alone as I thought, and it felt *really* good to get some traction today on being protected… The initial incident was Tuesday and spending Wednesday and part of Thursday getting rejected, refused, and turned away from sources of supposed help took a lot out of me.

        I almost wish I were depressed. Depressed me feels very little and goes through life in a zombie-like haze. But, alas I’ve spent the last three and a half years on the “invisible illness” go-round, complete with shifting diagnoses and what I like to call “test & guess”. It’s like a bad riddle sometimes: “What causes nerve misfirings, loss of motor function,restlessness and random spells of aphasia?” I’ve learned to laugh about the health stuff and just keep trying, in general. I just got out of my routines and let the stress exacerbate the whatever it is to the point of being sidelined worse than I have in months. These “off days” used to happen a few times a month, but now it’s been so long that I forgot it was part of the deal until I emailed my neurologist and checked my health journal.

        I’m training an intern at my company tomorrow, so having him take over some admin stuff will help buy me some “me time”. I’ve restructured my budget to be able to pay to get my apartment cleaned. And I’m going to relax this week. A lot.

        You’re right about not living in fear. I’ve been through too much to let this break me. I’m gathering all the resources I can to help me be my own best advocate. And I won’t stop until something is done about that man.

        Argh. I never mean to write so much. So sorry for the length!

      • tamaratattles

        Miele,
        I went a LONG ASS TIME being pissed when people told me I was depressed. I just went from having energy to HAVING NO ENERGY. I went from loving to shop, to loving to sit around wearing sweatpants and not showering or brushing my teeth. I WAS NOT AND STILL AM NOT DEPRESSED ABOUT ANYTHING!

        Because I thought depressed meant sad. And maybe it dos, but I usually didn’t FEEL sad. I felt confused, Why did I suddenly go from feeling one way to feeling the opposite. Why don’t I give shit about my appearance anymore when I used to be hot and put in some effort? I totally ran to the shrink(s) and the regular MDs. I had my hormones tested. (and they were normal). I paid for people to tell me I was fine, my friends contributed the very expensive shrink thing.

        It was not until I was near the end I figured out I was going into menopause. The depression meds they were pushing didn’t work. I was depressed not because I was sad about anything, I was going through menopause and this is just me, but I think when the female body goes through menopause, there is this switch that tells the brain you can’t have kids anymore and whether you ever wanted to or not, it is like something is taken away from you and your BODY is sad. Because I didn’t FEEL sad.I felt irritated and thought I had some “invisible disease”

        I’ve found the drugs don’t work for me. A whole foods diet with little to no preservatives, sugar,alcohol etc. (in other words eat real food, )works.But that is HARD to maintain. Avoid the government funded GMO corn and the HFCS it puts in all our food. Shop at Whole Foods. Things they don’t sell avoid as much as possible.

        DEPRESSION sounds like you are sad or sitting around crying all the time. That is not what it is. They should give it another name.

        Like menopause. And diet helps A LOT so does Sam-e and electrolyte water.

      • Cat

        Goodness, Miele! What you are going through is so stressful, you are probably exhausted! “Me time” is SO important, I’m glad to hear you are feeling a little better.

        This is a good place to vent. People really do care about each other here. And venting is important, too. It helps to “let off some steam”. Like a pressure cooker.

        Sounds like you are doing the right things. And you have some great support. Thank God for your younger brother! Hang in there, and stay safe!

      • WhyOWhy

        Miele, I would LOVE to go to COmic-Con (fellow nerd here). We just had ours here in Sacramento and Sebastian Stan was here. OMG, I wish I had been able to go. I am so in lust with him. LOL.

        BFF’s husband runs a website that reviews movies, comics and games, so he tried to get us press passes for SDCC since we all write for the site, but got denied this year. =(

      • Miele

        Thank you, Cat!!! Glad to see you’re back!!!

      • Miele

        WhyOWhy- Oh that stinks! They make it more and more random and difficult to get badges of all types each year.

        OMG I LOVE Sebastian Stan, too!!! He may be one of my favorites of the last decade….

  11. ingrid

    made cupcakes for church tomorrow, running the service, and today worked on refinishing my deck my own Damn Self! Repairs, sanding, staining, priming, and painting tomorrow. It will be awesome and i will reward myself with a new grill and table!

  12. Tara

    I love y’all!
    It has been a crazy week here in N.C. but the events going on in our world have been a serious reality check.
    After losing my soul mate last month I have truly tried to live a better and more fulfilling life. We are having a celebration of life event for him this upcoming week. His daughter, who just graduated high school has asked that all donations be sent to the victims in Orlando. I am so proud of her and I know he is too.
    I am so grateful for TT and each of you. I enjoy reading your comments and getting to know y’all better.
    Miele and JustJenn – please be safe, go with your gut. The people that are stalking you want you to be scared, it is a way to control you. Protect yourself, any way you can and feel comfortable with. I will be praying for you.
    Tomorrow is Father’s Day, the sperm donor backed out of getting our son this weekend so he and I will be spending time with my dad (he is actually my step dad) He is doing better and I am grateful he is here.
    Hugs to each of you!

    • WhyOWhy

      Tara, I am so sorry for your loss. His daughter sounds like a great kid. So kind of her.

      Please enjoy the day with your son and your dad. A step-parent is still a parent. And many times, more than a biological parent.

    • Miele

      Tara- Thank you for your advice and prayers.

      It sounds like your soul mate raised an amazing young woman. It must be a comfort to you to have her in your life. I know I’ve personally found celebration of life events to be so healing in the past, so I think it’s great that you’ll be having one for your soul mate.

      Your son’s sperm donor sounds like a jerk. I’m glad you and your son will be able to spend time with your dad. It seems that your son has had many strong examples that it’s love that makes family and not just biology and that’s awesome.

      Have a wonderful rest of your weekend and fantastic week!

    • Minky

      I’m so sorry Tara. Hugs to you too.

    • JustJen

      Thank you Tara and I’m sorry for your loss…it sounds like you are going about it the right way by living a better and more fulfilling life..we could all learn from that!

      I just read a book called “It’s Okay to Laugh: (Crying Is Cool Too) by Nora Purmort. She lost her husband, dad, had a miscarriage all in a matter of months. Nora has the same attitude as you do. It’s a good read and relatable if you’re ever looking for something new to read.

  13. Heidi

    I had gumbo for the first time on vacation in Orlando last week at a Louisiana style restaurant, Tibbys I think it was called. Maybe it’s an acquired taste? My Yankee tastebuds weren’t sure about it. However, my shrimp and grits were the best thing I’ve ever put in my mouth! I’d be a happy girl if I could recreate that recipe.

    It’s going to be HOT again today in Wisconsin. 88 is the high, another inside day.

    Making corned beef hash for hubby for Fathers Day breakfast. Smells so good! Hope everyone has a great day!!

  14. Cat

    I took an entire week off the internet. It was wonderful, although I kept thinking about everyone here. You all are my lifeline, too.

    I no longer have “real” friends, and I’m OK with that. They were all assholes, anyway. I’d rather be alone with the cats.

    It’s too hot here to go out, and I ran out of money a week ago, so I’m just hiding out, playing with the cats, cleaning up, and watching TV. I bought season one of “American Horror Story”, and binge watched that on my birthday. I had never seen season one. Now, I need to get the others. I’ve never seen Coven, or Asylum, either.

    The new show I am watching is “Brain Dead”, Mondays on Fox. It’s weird, like a cross between “Scandal” and “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” with a twist of “Stepford Wives”. Yes, it’s a stupid show, but I enjoy stupid shows. They are a great escape from the world, and antisocial media.

    Believe it or not, I have never had gumbo. Sounds good.

    • AHS:Murder House Season 1 is the BEST of the anthology. Jessica Lange was chillingly wicked. Adelaide character’s fate just broke my heart, ” I wanna be a pretty girl.” just kills me…and Rubber Man was truly terrifying. I’m still annoyed that we never got to see what happened with Constance & her demon grandchild.

      • Cat

        Yeah, I really liked it. I think I’ll watch it over and over again. Thanks for your input!

      • WhyOWhy

        AHS: Murder House was the best season, I agree. I gave up on the show halfway through Coven. I did hear a rumor that the next season *could* include demon grandchild.

    • misery chick

      PERFECT description of “Brain Dead”!
      Love Aaron Tveit (Marius in ‘Les Mis’ movie-sighhhhh, yummmmmm) and Danny Pino and the goofiness…but HATE the goop 😠 Know it’s fake but can’t get past it, lol. Will try to watch again 😊

      • Cat

        I know what you mean about the goop. It was gross. But funny. :)

        I don’t know of the actors you mentioned. But I was a huge fan of “Monk”, and watched this because of Tony Shalhoub.

      • Cat

        Oops. Brain Dead is on CBS, not Fox.

      • WhyOWhy

        I love Aaron Tveit — he was so good in Graceland. I was sad it got cancelled. Also LOVE him in Les Mis.

    • Dee

      Hey Cat, don’t know if you will see this, I missed you! So glad you’re back. Dee

      • Cat

        Thanks! Happy to be back!

      • Minky

        Yay! Cat’s back! Happy belated birthday. I’m having one too. I get birthday blues, so I’ve been crying my eyes out lately. Like, puffy as hell in the morning. Plus my horror-mones (hormones) from my menestration. The only thing the doctor suggests to help is birth control, but I don’t wanna mess with my body chemistry and make things worse than what they already are. Sometimes having a vagina is way too much work.

        I think I’ll do a Twilight Zone binge soon. I fucking love that show!

      • Cat

        Oh, Minky! Sorry about the birthday blues. I used to get those, too. Now, I just celebrate on my own, doing whatever I want to do. No pressure that way.

        I wish I could help! If there is anything I can do, just give the word. I’ll be happy to give you my new phone number, if you need someone to vent to.

        The Twilight Zone is a great choice for binge watching. I love that show, too.

        Please try to have a happy birthday, and celebrate YOU! <3

    • WhyOWhy

      Ohhh, I wanted to watch “Brain Dead!” I’ll have to catch it on Hulu because Dish Network is in negotiations with the local Fox affiliate, so at the moment, I don’t have my Fox channel.

    • MARC

      American Horror Story is amazing! Murder house Asylum & Coven are RIVETING! Enjoy your summer & the cats !

  15. JoJoFLL

    I went to Pride yesterday in Fort Lauderdale with my BFF and his partner.

    They started the parade in silence with people carrying big photos of each of the Orlando victims.

    You could have heard a pin drop, it was very moving.

    • Dee

      Thank you so much for sharing JoJo, I came back here after seeing people saying that the shooting was about religion and I remember UF saying, this was a hate crime, hate crime. UF said that people would try to change this in to something else and they are. Very frightening world we are living in.

    • WhyOWhy

      That sounds like it would have brought me to tears. Here, at the Oakland A’s game on Sunday, they left one seat open for each of the victims and tied a ballon to each seat forming a rainbow. It was really touching.

      • WhyOWhy

        At least I think it was the A’s… it could have been The giants game in Tampa Bay… I watched like 3 baseball games yesterday, so I don’t really remember. Even still… so touching.

  16. Crazydoesit

    Just binge watched the OITNB Season 4. Thinking about going to the vigil tonight, I’m not up to it but I think I’ll regret not going. I’m glad that Westboro wasn’t successful yesterday or Thursday. I hope they’re done trying. It defies logic how any of those people think that’s acceptable behavior. I was really encouraged, uplifted to see so many people support the LGBT community this past week. There are so many amazing people in Orlando.

  17. T D

    Trying to squeeze as much color as possible into what once was a monochromatic garden. Variety isn’t just the spice of life but a living example of contrasting beauty.

  18. Dee

    OOh!! I binge watched 7 seasons of Nurse Jackie in a week, it was so good I could not stop watching it.
    I love all the comments here, thanks so much Tamara!

  19. I’m late to the gumbo party but when I lived in Louisiana I went to the New Orleans School of cooking and this adorable little Cajun lady taught us her old family recipe for gumbo. It’s amazing and when I make it I make a double batch so I can freeze half, because it takes for effin ever to chop everything and stir the roux. If you google the school name, one of k the first posts is a blogger who posted the recipe. The only additions from the teacher were lots of fresh parsley at the end and to use peanut oil because if it’s high smoke point.

  20. Minky

    Los Angeles is hot as hell right now. And it’s not even July! Usually the Indian Summer is way worse than the official summer months, like September and October. I guess we’re getting started early with the heat waves this year. Le sigh.

    DTLA, where I work, is gonna be 100 degrees tomorrow. Aaaaargh!!! If I don’t check-in here at TT’s by Tuesday, send out a search party. I’ll probably have melted into a boiling puddle on the concrete of the parking lot at work from the intense heat. If it weren’t for Starucks’ venti, toffee-nut, extra-shot, iced lattes, my Parliaments and/or Virginia Slims’, and the music in my car to stave off road-rage, I’d lose my damn mind.

    • WhyOWhy

      Minky, It was really hot here in Sacramento, too. I spent the day at my parents, jeast of San Francisco and it was still 85 degrees. When I got back to Sacramento at 11pm last night, it was 90 in my house!

    • NeverBeenJaxed

      @Minky – I’m coming to search for you in person! My brother and sister-in-law live in Westwood, so that’ll be command central ! I heart LA !

      While there, I’m gonna head to SUR and Pump, you know…just to make sure you’re not hiding out there :)

      • Minky

        @NeverBeenJaxed Thank you for your concern. Somehow I’ve made it back without dissolving, but it wasn’t easy, lemme tell you. The weather report predicted 100 degrees, but no. They’re never right. It was 113 degrees when I got in my car. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARGH!

        You could actually see the heat waves radiating off of the sidewalk.

        If you’re gonna be in the Southland, and you like art, check out the Broad Museum on Grand Avenue. Especially if you like Contemporary art. I’ve yet to go, as it’s still pretty new, but I’ve heard many good things from friends. And its free admission! Also, the LACMA always has something going on. The recently passed on artist, Chris Burden’s, sculpture “Metropolis II” that’s at the LACMA, is WONDERFUL. And everybody loves taking their picture in front of Burden’s “Urban Light”.

  21. Miele

    TT- thank you for sharing your journey. I think I may have read it before because it’s definitely from this site that I got the idea to ask my doctors if it might be menopause. They’ve all laughed at me so far because I’m only in my mid 30s, but I think I’ll do more research on it soon so that I can ask better questions. I honestly don’t think I’m too young for the early kind, but I’ll admit I don’t know that much on the subject.

    I don’t have a problem with the idea of having depression. I’ve been clinically depressed, and I’m not ashamed of that journey. But this has been different. I *want* to go do things. I even have the energy to do things, but then my leg or foot will give out and I fall, or my hand gives up and I drop the keys and need five minutes plus to get them back off the floor, or I just can’t stand the pain that shoots up one leg when I stand. When I absolutely must still go out, I get out the cane or walker and make it happen, but otherwise a bad body day equals time to lay down. And it frustrates the heck out of me. Especially since this whole “not wanting me around but unable to leave me alone” thing with my former boss pushes at some past issues I’ve had with men. So Saturday was just a perfect storm of body won’t cooperate, authorities won’t “cooperate”, and I just got overwhelmed with the angst and fear of it all.

    We do know that my nerves don’t respond correctly from the EMG tests I get a few times a year. So for now I’m taking nerve medicine and that seems to help. But all this time, one fancy teratoma (woohoo for alveolar tissue and neurons! Mama always told me I was special, lol)and a brain cyst later, I still have no answers.I suppose I shouldn’t categorize it as “invisible illness” so much as “I can hide what’s going on really well from most people and they’ll never guess I’m unwell.” Since I rarely go home, most of my siblings don’t even know how bad it is.

    I’m going to try Sam-E, I’ve heard great things about it. I typically buy my food at Whole Foods, but I’ve gotten into really bad eating habits lately and have eaten a ton of takeout in the car between clients instead of real food. YOU’RE ABSOLUTELY RIGHT- I need to stay consistent with my diet. My brother is off today, so I’ll ask if he’ll take me grocery shopping tonight.

    I’m definitely open to any suggestions on things to consult my doctors and therapist about. The therapist and the shrink have said I’m not depressed and I honestly don’t feel it, but I’ll brooch the subject this week for sure. I’m glad I made an appointment last week after the incident. A friend has suggested I see a rheumatologist, so I’m going to look into that as well. Second half of this week is going to be dedicated to working on healing and relaxing.

    • Miele

      Shoot. That was supposed to post above. Argh. Sorry!

    • Miele, since you’re open to suggestions, are you taking any vitamin B supplements?

      I had some similar problems as yours, like my leg would give out for no reason (usually while trying to cross a street in a hurray, and I get neuropathy in my feet at times and similar problems in my hands where they feel really inflamed. Ends up I was vitamin B12 deficient and my body doesn’t process it well.

      I take a supplement every day and it helps a lot. If I skip a day, my feet act up at night. I recently read an article that most people are deficient and even when they get tested, the results come back normal.

      Its worth a shot to try them and see if they help. I take the liquid one for B12 because your body absorbs it better that way, and I get the rest of them in my daily vitamin pill.

      • Miele

        limebrain-
        Wow. That sounds so much like some of what I’ve been going through! I’m definitely going to try the liquid B-12 supplement and see if that helps.

        I know that we’re not health experts or whatever here, but I honestly feel like I’m already being guinea pigged by my doctors, I might as well try out other things as well (as long as they seem safe and are preferably mostly natural) OR at least have more alternatives to ask them about.

        Thank you sooooo much, limebrain!!!

      • I truly hope it helps. It would be nice to have a simple solution for something every once in a while. :)

  22. NeverBeenJaxed

    It was really beautiful in Damn Yankee Territory this weekend, not LA hot, but in the 90’s and perfect tomato and basil growing weather.

    I’m still hangin in the house most of these days recovering from a particularly bad bout of pneumonia, ear infection, and sinus infection. I’m a mess. Trying to get rid of all these infections because I have a biopsy scheduled for Thursday and it can’t be done until I’m better. I already had to reschedule it once due to the above, I really don’t want to have to reschedule again. I’m already nervous and worried enough. Having to keep postponing it is adding to my anxiety and fear.

    Other than that, still going to school and loving it, and also working.

    I wish we could upload pictures – my Tami G grape tomato plants are about 4 1/2 feet tall and loaded with yellow flowers and tiny green tomatoes. My basil is growing like crazy too and is making some really awesome bruschetta, pesto, and all the wonderful things basil can do. I live for summer foods, fruits and veggies. Until my tomatoes are ripe I’ll probably cross the border into Jersey for some awesome Jersey tomatoes to hold me over. There are roadside stands all over the place in northwestern Jersey where I’m close to and I love to keep it local and support the mom and pop produce growers here.

    • tamaratattles

      Hope you feel better soon! Send me a photo!

    • Minky

      Oh my goodness. Take care of yourself. Being sick in the summer time is a major bee all by itself, and all that other stuff on top is just too much. Relax as much as you can, and concentrate on getting your strength. 🌺

  23. Thanks so much for the side note Tamara, it meant a lot today. It’s my 30th anniversary and I’m alone. Add to that everyone saying congrats on facebook because he posted something on there about how wonderful I am. I guess he doesn’t want anyone to know what’s happening.

    On a positive note, I went for a walk on the back of my property and found a huge raspberry patch. I picked a bunch and they were wonderful. I was going to get more and make jam, then I remembered I don’t have anyone to make it for.

    The garden looks great. I worked on it all weekend. Thank God for gardens.

    • tamaratattles

      Good to see you Mary! I tried to email you over the weekend using the account you use here. Thirty years is a great accomplishment. And now on to a brand new chapter of your life!

      • I didn’t get an email but the email I use here is the correct one. I’ve been sorta spacy lately so maybe I just didn’t catch it. Thank you for thinking of me.

    • Hi, Mary! TT is right. Thirty years is a great accomplishment. I’m sorry you had to spend it alone. Have you told anyone yet? I think if you do, you would be surprised at the support you get, and you wouldn’t feel so alone.

      On another note, I think you should go and pick more raspberries and make jam. There are plenty of people who would appreciate some home made jam. I just recently had to redo my raspberry patch and basically start it over again because it got to weedy and most of the plants died. It was a lot of work, but I enjoy going out there at night and picking them because its very relaxing and gets my mind off things.

      I make jam with my my mother and we give it out as part of Christmas presents. I also give jars out when I first make it to my doctor, car mechanic, the guy who comes over to take care of small plumbing problems and my furnace, the librarian who cancels out my late book fees, etc. Gotta keep the important people in my life happy. Lol!

      I also stick leftover berries in plastic containers and freeze them so I can have them through out the year for muffins and breads and things.

      So, I bet you have plenty of people to make jam for who would appreciate it. You just haven’t thought about it yet.

    • Dee

      Thinking of you Mary. Gardening is very healing. I remember when I would get depressed the garden would cheer me up. working in the soil, watching things grow was such a joy to me. I couldn’t control my life or keep my home clean but watching the work I had done bloom was very satisfying. Thirty years is a huge accomplishment. Odd that hubby said something on FB. Is this something that is being hidden by him? Sorry if that is nosy. We are all rooting for you. HUGS Dee

  24. Cat

    I am suddenly feeling sad, depressed, deflated, pick an adjective.

    ANOTHER kid has been shot and killed in this Godless city. He was only 4 years old. His family was driving home from a Father’s Day BBQ, when their car got between two other cars that were engaged in a rolling gun battle.

    That’s 49 dead kids in the last 6 months.

    Meanwhile, Kansas City held their huge annual gun show. Thousands attended, just in the first day.

    I don’t want to start a political debate on gun control. I get it. People love their guns. Some people are afraid. 2nd amendment, blah, blah, blah. I get it.

    I recently posted on Facebook about this. Those who are paranoid and think people want to take their precious guns away…what would these people say to the grieving parents of the dead children?

    I was accused of being stupid, and falling for government propaganda. Someone even shared their outrage, saying that they were more upset over people texting and driving.

    I am overly sensitive. Yes, I am. This world is completely fucked up. People care more about property than people.

    I cried for this little 4 year old. I did not know him, or the family. I feel like the only “outsider” that cares about all of these innocent kids dying because of gun violence.

    And I don’t even like kids. I shouldn’t care. But, I do.

  25. Dee

    Oh…Cat, I am truly sorry to hear about the death of another child. I don’t know what the world is coming to when people can’t feel anything for an innocent child being killed. I know there are the people that are just crazy about their 2nd amendment rights. No one is trying to take that away. We just want the killings to stop. It seems life is not as important as the right to “bear arms” I would like to see the automatic weapons gone. Thanks for standing up for what you believe in. Can you believe Congress is conducting a sit in?
    Thinking of you my friend, take care, HUGS, Dee

    • Cat

      Thanks. I deactivated my Facebook account over this. I couldn’t stand being called an idiot, just because I was asking people to show a little compassion.

      I’m going to try to stay off of it for a full month. Maybe then, I can break my Facebook addiction. Facebook fasting, of sorts.

  26. NAA

    Happy Birthday, TT!

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