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November 2013
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January 2014

Chuck's Chuck Chili

Chuck Wendig posted a chili recipe on his excellent site a few weeks ago. The meat used was a pot roast, such as chuck, along with the regular chili fixin's. He'd left most quantities as 'to taste', and added a lot of entertaining back story and asides. Do read his version. I tried it, and made some notes, so will present below my first draft. Further editing to be done whenever I cook this again. This first version was yummy.

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ROW80-4 - 12/26 - This is the end

The end of another ROW80. I tried to follow on with the same goals and objectives, and managed OK. I was looking for focus and flexibility, trying to balance publishing with other writerly things. My Goals were still long term - to become a better writer and to become a successful (income earning) author. Also, I wanted to ensure that I live life, make some positive contributions to it, and get/stay healthy enough to enjoy it. Focus on the journey, not just the destination. Objectives were similar to last round with the focus on publishing tasks. Things did change a bit, but I stayed flexible. Looking forward to the next ROW80, as I find the discipline, sense of community, and encouragement really helps. Next year I want to edit/publish book #2 but also get back into Flash Fiction.

Here's my objectives for the last round, and status:

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All alone

Christmas Eve, and I'm home alone. And it's a good thing, because alone is different than lonely.

I had all my Christmas/Holiday shopping done so headed up to Wellington Street. It was a cold, but a sunny day - no more snow and the sidewalks are now walkable. I stopped to buy a loaf of bread from the bakery and some coffee beans from Bridgehead then dropped by O'Connell's pub. Shared a couple of beers  and some laughs with friends that were there, and had a pleasant phone call from my little sister. She wanted to know where/how she could get my book (iTunes) and just chat, Then it was handshakes and hugs all around and off to one of my other favorite haunts- the Carleton Tavern. Tomorrow is the annual Christmas dinner there, with free food, as well as gift parcels - for anyone, poor or not. I dropped off a couple of more of my books for the gift pile, then visited with the more friends. And got waylaid into helping, in between beers - rearranging furniture, folding cutlery and paper napkins, and opening a case of Stove Top Stuffing boxes. Last call was 6, but we stayed longer to help with last minute odds and ends, then finished off with some turkey sandwiches - courtesy of Sam. Finally headed home, past all the closed up shops, to a bowl of chili from the freezer, with toast. Not that fancy a meal, but still enough to encourage a bit of a nap. 

CBC2 is playing "Christmas Night Stream" now - non-stop classical Christmas music. Beautiful music, but my only regret was that there wasn't a playlist, so I didn't know what I was listening to. Then I remembered Shazam on my iPhone. Yay for technology! Nice music to browse the interwebs, share greetings with online friends, and sip some red wine. 

Tomorrow will be another visit with my daughter (and hubby and new baby) then an early dinner at the tavern and back home for the Doctor Who Christmas Special. 

All in all, a nice balance of time with friends and family, and time for me.

Merry Christmas Eve to all.

ROW80-4 - 12/22 - Christmas prep

Pretty well done with my ROW80 stuff. Busy with pre-Christmas things now - not pre-Holiday, as that would cover any of the days we have during the year to celebrate various events - pagan or otherwise. Nope, I call it Christmas. I find that with both kids married, between the other Jacketgrandparents, several grandkids, and various aunts and uncles, this season can become quite a scheduling challenge. I'm off to my daughter's tonight for a bit of Christmas, then will host my son and his family this Friday. Kind of nice how it stretches out the celebrations. And in between, I'll relax and catch up on my reading, plus do a bit of planning for next year.

My place smells yummy this time of year too. Last week it was from a batch of tourtiere, baked to give out as presents. Today it's a big ham, all basted up, baking for a few hours. It's destined to be sliced and brought over to a local tavern, The Carleton, as part of their annual, free, sit down Christmas Dinner. They do it every year, along with free gift bags for all. I'll be donating a couple of copies of my book too. Once it's done, I'll leave it in the back porch (a Canadian freezer/fridge)  to cool a bit, and head out to do some last minute shopping in my neighbourhood. I'll be wearing the new wool shirt my boss bought me for Christmas - pictured at right. Known in Kirk's Landing as a dinner jacket. 

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