Using up

I woke up this morning and thought about how odd it was to have only a two day weekend. Despite the fact that it is still all-furlough-Fridays-all-the-time at work, I went into the office yesterday. We had a few major projects that needed finishing, and they had to be done by end of week, and with my boss being out of town and everything else on both our plates, there was no other option. So instead I will have an extra-short week this week, or if this furlough thing continues through February maybe I will just gather a few of those furlough days together and just take an entire week off.

I got up and made coffee and I sat at the computer for a while, catching up on blogs and various discussion boards, and then I decided it was high time to deal with the slowly accumulating pile of butternut squash in the refrigerator. I absolutely cannot STAND squash – even the smell is revolting – but they’ve been coming in the CSA boxes for the past several weeks, and I hate the idea of just throwing the stupid things away. So we hacked them in half and then I tossed them into the oven for an hour or so and then scooped all the roasted squash into the food processor, and pureed it, and now it is in bags in the freezer, because butternut squash can be used interchangeably with pumpkin for baking (and according to popular wisdom, canned pumpkin you buy in stores is more often not pumpkin, but some kind of similar winter squash), and if I use enough sugar and spice it will be fine.

We had sandwiches for lunch on the homemade kaiser rolls (Richard may laugh at the fact that I made so many last weekend, but every time I bite into one I am reminded all over again why all that work was so incredibly worth it) and then we headed off to the mall. The insurance company that Richard’s company uses has this yearly program where if you go in and take a short survey about your health, they will send you a rather hefty gift certificate to a store of your choice. Last year we chose Amazon, and used the gift certificates (along with a few others I’d been saving) to pay for the new sink for our gorgeous new kitchen. This year we picked Sears, since we are both in need of some new clothes and shoes, and it was really the only clothing store we were interested in going to.

I would just like to note, by the way, that it infuriates me that when a man goes to buy clothes, no matter what his size, he just goes to ONE department. The styles are the same in every size, from tiny to huge. All a man ever has to do is just goes straight to the rack or the shelf, and pulls his size out from a stack of items all identical except for the numbers on the tag. There is no difference in material used, or style. I find it just mind boggling that fashion designers can seem to handle all the differences in male body types and still provide them with exactly the same styles, but when it comes to women, suddenly it’s just too hard. Last time I looked, men come in a wide range of shapes and sizes too.

Anyway. Deep breath. Stepping carefully away from that soapbox now. We both got some of the stuff that we needed, and thanks to the gift certificates it was all free, so despite the inevitable bout of self-loathing that comes from trying on clothes, the shopping trip was a success. Tonight was an encore performance of a concert the women’s ensemble did last year, so I went off to sing. The venue was different than the one we usually use, and it was odd to perform there, because there is a lot of carpet and it felt (to us, at least) as if the sound was just being sucked up and we could barely even hear ourselves. But this is not the first time we’ve sung in a place where the acoustics for the audience were great, but the acoustics for the singers stank, and everyone seemed to like it, so apparently it worked out fine.