When weather disagrees

Inspiration for a dull gray day.  Sunrise on Kauai

It’s happened to all of us at one time or another. You have plans, happy plans, big plans. You’re actually feeling pretty good, the sun is shinning, the weather.com site tells you it’s going to be cold but sunny and you’re planning to go out and see some sights, do some exploring, etc. Then, the wind shifts, a cloud appears in the sky, then another, then another until they blend together into a miasma of gray bleecht. The temperatures that weren’t great to begin with have turned colder. I throw open the door, see the smattering of new snow on the ground, not enough to be pretty, just enough to be messy. I shake my fist at the sky and holler “but I feel good today, you can’t do this to me.” The sun peaks through the overcast for a split second, like a wink from the sky and then the wind laughs at me.

I close the door, flop down, pout for a few minutes and then, I make new plans. I have no intention of wasting this wonderful day on binge watching, mindless net surfing, or *shudder* housework. Dammit, I feel good or at least not bad. This is a fairly common occurrence for me. Common enough that I actually have a list of things that I’d like to do but never seem to have the time. To be honest, I have two such lists. One for bad days when I can barely breath or get out of bed, and the other one for days like this when I feel good but old man weather just refuses to cooperate. It’s really a lot handier to have than it seems. Whenever a problem like this presents itself, I have real trouble thinking of something to do that’s special enough to deserve this wonderful day.

So for your consideration and edification, here is my list of possibilities for today.

~ Spa day — this used to include a long, luxurious bath but since my current bath tub is all of about 4 inches deep, I’ll settle for a facial mask and a mani/pedi.

~ Make something you normally don’t take the time for. I like to make a batch of jam or fruit syrup. I made a lovely batch of autumn chutney last fall that was wonderful and lasted for weeks.

~ Read – pick up that 600 page easy read wonder (Outlander anyone?) and dig in. Extra treat, take scheduled “chocolate and herbal tea” or “hot cocoa” breaks.

~ Drag your partner away from whatever video game or work he’s trying to do and play a board game, a card game, or do a jigsaw puzzle. Reward yourselves with the aforementioned hot cocoa.

~ Write something, a poem, a journal, a novel. Yeah, I’m that kind of “writer” I’ve got a book in process and this might be a good day to just write a couple of action scenes. Plug in my “action scenes” playlist and have at it. Check out nanowrimo for inspiration.

~ Get out the sewing machine. I don’t do this often due to space constraints. It’s really difficult to set up for serious sewing when you’re entire house is the size of most peoples living rooms, but there it is. I always have a stack of alterations and/or mending that needs the machine. Be nice to get it done and update my wardrobe at the same time.

~ Get in some exercise. Now, I happen to have access to a nice exercise room here at the RV park. But a lot of times I don’t. That’s when I like to break out my belly dance fitness videos, or even a Leslie Sansone disk. If you don’t have a collection of workout videos to choose from, no worries, youtube is loaded.

~ Experiment with your oven. Maybe baking muffins is a routine accomplishment at your house but around here as a gluten free vegan, it is cause for celebration. Check out the minimalistbaker.com or just google whatever you’re in the mood for. Recipes are out there.

There we have it, a list of fun things to do when the weather changes your plans for you without so much as a “by your leave.” Personally, that last one, experimenting with my oven sounds good for today. I’m craving some luscious muffiny goodness to go with my afternoon cuppa. Here’s two versions of my favorite muffins one for those with no dietary restrictions and the other for, well, me.

Basic Muffins

2 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 egg, beaten
1 cup milk
1/4 cup oil

Mix ingredients together. Spoon into greased muffin cups, 2/3 full. Bake at 400° for 20-25 minutes. Makes about 12-15 muffins

My Muffins

1 cup fine almond flour
1 cup all purpose gluten free flour mix
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. flax meal mixed with 2.5 Tbsp. water (let sit for about 5 minutes)
1 cup non-dairy milk
1/4 cup applesauce

Mix ingredients together. Spoon into greased muffin cups, 2/3 full. Bake at 400° for 20-25 minutes. Makes about 12-15 muffins

For both muffins, if desired you can add all kinds of things to them my faves:

* add some cinnamon in with the flour and sprinkle the top with a little turbinado sugar.
* fill cups about 1/2 full, drop some frozen or fresh berries on top.
* same procedure but add some chocolate chips, chopped dried fruit whatever you have and/or like.  Note, if adding nuts, add them with the flour before adding wet ingredients, this will help keep them from sinking to the bottom of the muffin.

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