When I sat down to write the draft for this post, I consulted my memory for screwball things that had amused me lately.
The pickings were slim.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining. I’m still incredibly grateful to be living where I do and doing what I love. Despite all the crap going on in the world, most of it hasn’t really stunk up my life too much.
Still, I think we’re all feeling a bit frazzled right about now. We’re in the throes of a huge second wave of COVID, and even though Hubby and I have zero social contact and only go out for groceries every two weeks or so, it’s just one… more… worry… added to all the stresses of daily life.
We could all use a little comfort right about now, so let’s share a few of our favourite things, and maybe we can all feel a bit better. I’ll start, but I’ll warn you up front that I’m a bit of a weirdo. My ‘comfort’ stuff is probably someone else’s ‘are you kidding me?!?’
Houseplants: My Christmas cactuses are putting on a show!
Comfort reads: When I just want to retreat under a (metaphorical) soft fuzzy blanket, I return to the gentler books of my past: James Herriot’s series about a country veterinarian in Yorkshire (first book “If Only They Could Talk”, and Dorothy Gilman’s Mrs. Pollifax series (first book “The Unexpected Mrs. Pollifax”) along with her lesser-known novels “The Clairvoyant Countess” and “Thale’s Folly”.
Funny escapist reads: Sometimes you need a few snickers with your escapism. Katy Munger’s Casey Jones series does it for me (first book “Legwork”.) I almost never read romance because it’s annoyingly predictable; but if I want a laugh-out-loud read with a warm-and-fuzzy ending, Tawna Fenske’s Ponderosa Ranch series (first book “Studmuffin Santa”) is full of raunchy humour, oddball situations, and quirky characters.
Comfort food: I love food of all kinds; but when my defenses are down, my ultimate comfort food is soft-poached eggs on buttered toast.
Decadent dessert: When only something rich and decadent will soothe my soul, it’s time for Hello Dolly bars: Only five ingredients mixed in the pan (no dirty mixing bowls, hooray), and enough sugar and fat to induce a blissful coma:
Hello Dolly Bars (8″x8″ or 9″x9″ pan)
- 1/2 cup melted butter
- 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup shredded coconut
- 1 can sweetened condensed milk (300ml / 10 oz)
Mix the melted butter and graham cracker crumbs together and press them into the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle chocolate chips over top. Sprinkle coconut over chocolate chips. Drizzle the sweetened condensed milk evenly over the whole thing. (The other ingredients should be completely covered.) Bake at 350°F until top is bubbly and browned (approximately 30 – 35 minutes). I like it best when it’s room temperature or a bit chilled, but I can never resist a few pieces right after it comes out of the oven!
Comfort music: It’s crazy but true: When I’m feeling fragile, I don’t retreat into meditation soundtracks or classical music. Nope, barbershop harmony is what comforts me the most. It’s not the music of my childhood. It’s not even the music of my parents’ childhood. So maybe I’ve been reincarnated from someone who lived in the late 1800s? Who knows, but here’s a modern sample:
Guaranteed belly laugh: Here are a couple of video clips that always make me laugh helplessly. The first is an ancient one from when BSE (Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy) was all over the news. I’ve never made it past the 22-second mark without doubling over:
And here’s one that pretty much sums up how I feel about COVID right now:
Whew, I feel better! 🙂
Now it’s your turn! What are your comfort goodies? Make up your own categories, or copy and paste any or all of these into your comment:
- Comfort reads:
- Funny / escapist reads:
- Comfort food:
- Decadent dessert:
- Comfort music:
- Guaranteed belly laugh:
Book 16 update: Another good week of plotting and figuring out everybody’s twisty motivations. I’m on Chapter 24, and Lola and her geriatric CRAPS cronies are on the case!