This has nothing at all to do with the rest of this post, but I thought you might be interested to know that Angst has spent more time in the kitchen lately than I have. It started a couple of nights ago. I was sitting here at my computer, clickity-clacking away, when I spied something out of place in my peripheral vision. I turned to see what was awry with just enough time to see something that appeared to be small and gray and possessing a tail skitter away. Angst chased his new friend under the dishwasher and then sat there for the rest of the night, waiting for his little buddy to make another appearance. Honestly, it happened in such a flash, I couldn't be sure if it was the cute little mouse I thought it was or a really big cockroach. Obviously, my vote was for the former.
No appearance was made by Angst's little friend, who only popped his little head in during the heaviest part of the recent rainstorm, so Mister and I assumed he had found his way back out to wherever mice in the city live (probably someone else's home?). Then, just a few minutes ago, I noticed Angst was stalking the stove, staring quite intently at various parts of it. Nothing says "Exciting Monday Night" like this: the cat was staring at the stove and I was staring at the cat and occasionally glancing at the stove. Then it happened: a tiny, gray, fuzzy head popped up out of one of the burners and looked around. He popped back down after I may or may not have exclaimed something relatively unholy...
He's good at hiding, so who knows how long he'll stay, but I'm not letting Mister kill him, so we'll see what Angst ends up doing. He likes mice. We had one at our ghetto apartment and he used to hang out by the stove and wait to pet it. That mouse was much bigger than this one and he never did me any harm, so I don't see why this one needs to meet an untimely demise. I'm just glad he turned out to be a mouse, not a 'roach.
So about that dinner... I didn't end up making dinner last night since we didn't even get home from the wedding until almost 7pm...and then we took a short nap. Around 11, we both broke into leftovers and then went to bed. Very exciting, I know. But that's why I made Coconut Curry Rice from Vegan on the Cheap tonight. I was a little surprised by how amazingly flavorful it was, for how simple a recipe it is. I was completely astonished, though, when the brown rice actually did cook in the coconut milk. As I was adding the rice to the dish, I thought to myself, "No, no...this is a mistake." It took a little longer than I wanted it to, but it was well worth the wait. I served it with some garlic naan.
Besides the normal savings earned by my diligent use of Vegan on the Cheap, this meal saved us money by helping me create the illusion of tasty, authentic Indian food right here at home. Last night, I found myself craving a trip to Lovash for their amazing samosas, crispy poppadums, and startling spices. However, right now I am both making an attempt to scale back our unnecessary expenses, as well as devoting any "extra" food money to our final trips to Horizons before they close. All in all, a very "cheap" evening, which leaves more cash for a trip to Horizons in the [hopefully] near future.
A few other cash-savers included attending Employee Appreciation at work today. Due to the stylish and healthy way we celebrate things, we had vendors with all kinds of health foods, served from little red kiosks under white-and-red striped umbrellas. Here's the rundown: sno-cones, cotton candy, popcorn, smoothies, and soft pretzels (it's a "Philly" thing, as one new hire who recently moved here from Massachusetts pointed out). Even though I know there is nothing natural or worth eating in that yellow flavoring they put on popcorn, it doesn't change the fact that it smells incredible and tastes as yellow as it looks, so I treated myself to some. I couldn't tell you the last time I had that kind of carnival popcorn, so I was able to justify it. I also had a pretzel and would have had a smoothie, but the line was way too long. So, there you go - afternoon snack taken care of with no added expense to me!
Finally, I managed to sneak off with about a half dozen "fresh" bagels for Mister's breakfast this week (probably me, too....I mean, they're free and they're bagels - what's not to want?). One of the nighttime supervisors has a team member who works at Manhattan Bagel during the day, so he frequently brings in the bagels that would have gotten thrown away. He had a haul of about 4 dozen bagels, so when my colleague invited me to help myself, I certainly did!
Here is your money-saving tip o' the day: although cherries are now increasing in price again, Whole Foods is blowing out organic strawberries at $3.50 a carton - they are so incredibly red and smell so good, you will do yourself a serious disservice if you let this pass you by. By the way, not only are they extremely attractive - they taste like the best strawberries you've ever had.