Sunday, January 23, 2011

A Perfect Day

When I get a little money I buy books.
And if there there is any left over,
I buy food.
Erasmus
Dutch Humanist 1466-1536

Today's featured poem on writersalmanacpublicradio.org is Three Perfect Days by Linda Pastan. The poem speaks to the writer's experience about reading an in flight magazine on a plane about three perfect days somewhere. Linda Pastan poem speaks to how she would settle for one perfect day somewhere without mosquitoes, traffic and newspaper headlines.
So... have you ever thought about how you might spend a perfect day? For me part of the day would be reading to get through that ever rising and never ending pile of books and magazines. Today as I sorted through some titles I have some recommends for you just in case you might consider skipping work one day to catch up on your reading.
Look Me in the Eye by John Elder Robison is a moving memoir about a man who was not diagnosed with Aspergers till his forties. He shares his perception what it is like to live with this syndrome. His life story is rather amazing in the sense he grew up in a dysfunctional family but still managed to find his niche in life designing innovative sound systems and effects for rock and roll bands, developing electronic games for Milton Bradley and fixing high end cars. Besides learning about his life the book could be considered a teaching tool for mental health educators.
Susan Vreeland's five previous novels explore a variety of art related themes. I particularly liked Girl in Hyacinth Blue and Luncheon of the Boating Party. Her newest book Clara and Mr. Tiffany is a fascinating read of Clara Driscoll, the creative impetus behind the iconic Tiffany lamps. The book follows her story for 15 years beginning in 1890. The reader is given a glimpse of what life was like for the Tiffany girls who labored in the workrooms of New York creating lamps and windows.
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Need a jump start to your day? Then this is just the recipe for you. It has spice, flavor and lots of kick! I have noted some modifications.
Mexican Brunch Squares
Ingredients:
  • 1 lb. of chorizo sausage cooked, drained and crumbled
  • 1-1/4 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1- 1/4 cup milk
  • 3 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup frozen corn thawed out about 10 minutes
  • 1 cup canned black beans rinsed and drained
  • 1/3 cup mild thick chunky salsa with spices
  • 2-3 cups cheese (I used package of Kraft Mexican 4 cheeses)
Directions:
  • Heat oven to 375
  • Grease very well sides and bottom of 13 x 9 pan
  • Use a whisk or hand mixer and beat flour, seasoning, baking powder, baking soda, eggs, milk, cornmeal, salsa until well blended
  • Fold in cooked sausage, corn, black beans
  • Pour into greased pan
  • Sprinkle with cheese
  • Bake 20-25 minutes or until puffy and golden brown
  • Let set for a few minutes before cutting
  • To serve: place a tablespoon of the following mixture on top of each slice-tomatoes,olives, lettuce and a bit of salsa



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