Tag Archives: NuShield

Squashing My Enthusiasm

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Was it hard to sleep last night, wondering how Tasty Tuesday turned out? The wait is finally over! Here’s the 411:

Possibly the hardest part of making the marinara squash was, no surprise, cutting the squash in half. That sucker was rock solid! I almost succumbed to running next door and pleading with JJ, the organizational wiz and accomplished chef, to help with the unyielding vegetable, but instead I just pierced its skin and microwaved it for a few minutes. That helped immensely. As is par for the course for me, I put the halves fleshy part down on the baking pan, popped it in the oven, and then read the rest of the instructions. Duh! Will I ever learn? So I had to pull the pan out of the oven, season the squash skin as instructed, and push it back in for 30 minutes.

Chipotle logoWhen I looked at the baked spaghetti squash, I was naturally dismayed: There seemed to be a lot of work ahead. This is why I’m usually the simplest of vegans: I can live on salads, which are easy to make, and fruit. Or I can live at Chipotle and let them cook for me. Either way, I’m a happy camper.

But I digress . . . I sat down at the kitchen table to deseed the squash while watching “American Idol” (which we never did finish; got to catch up tonight). It was a long, torturous job, with many seeds hiding everywhere. After a long sigh, it was time to rake the spaghetti-like strands with a fork. Raking = gardening = too much work! But I really wanted to eat dinner, so rake away I did. I finally got a bowl full, added the marinara sauce, nixed the chives (too much added work), and sat down for a taste test while watching the lovefest on “The Biggest Loser.” 

The verdict: The best part probably was the marinara sauce. Otherwise, I think spaghetti squash is too bland for my tastes and much too much work for me to ever make it again. I’m glad I tried it, though; now I can cross it off my veggie bucket list. Oh, and #2 son’s comment was, “That doesn’t look at all like spaghetti.” Doesn’t taste like it either, son.

Ten-Minute Tasks

The NuShield is on the MacBook! It actually only took about five minutes to apply. You can see the edges of it, but it’s not too noticeable. The $64,000 question, though, is how does it handle the glare? Quite nicely, I’m happy to report. I think it cuts the glare a good 75-80 percent, making it a worthwhile acquisition for those glossy laptop screens. Recommended!

mac-mail-logo1The iMac’s TMT is stretching for much longer than 10 minutes, unfortunately. The good news was that the Apple store geniuses put the data back on the computer. But there have been some glitches: First, the system administrator password doesn’t work anymore, which means I can’t install new software or certain downloads. That has to be reset via the install disks (hassle!). Second, Mac Mail isn’t working properly. I can set up the boys’ mailboxes and mail comes in but doesn’t go out. Grrrr! Finally, not only did the so-called geniuses not install iLife ’09 like they said they would, they didn’t reinstall iLife ’08, which came with the iMac! Major grrrrr!!

So along with Kitchen Wednesday, today I will be solving the above iMac problems, hopefully, satisfactorily. Maybe I’ll also solve a few of the “Lost” mysteries in anticipation of tonight’s episode!

Tasty Tuesday (I Hope!)

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See that lone, naked spaghetti squash up there? I hope that at this time tomorrow I can regale you with tales of how tasty it was after it’s been cooked tonight!

80x80px-ls-365_organicI’m going to use a recipe that I found on Helloveggie.org for marinara squash. While it does have slightly more than three ingredients, one is the squash, another is marinara sauce (I just happen to have a jar of Whole Foods’ 365 Organic Pasta Sauce), and the others are olive oil, salt, pepper, and chives—I have everything! I’ve never eaten spaghetti squash before thought I’ve always wanted to, but I must admit that I was intimidated by the hard-shelled beast. But Helloveggie.org’s Jenn has me believing that I can successfully master the squash, so I’ll be tackling it tonight and, hopefully, enjoying it while I watch “The Biggest Loser.”

Oh, and yes, I photographed the squash on a very old Thomas the Tank Engine plate. And worse? We still use that plate (love that Thomas!).

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 Ten-Minute Tasks

There are so many needy contenders in the house! I’ve decided to pick the NuShield, which came a couple days ago. It’s pictured above in the plastic bag it came in and on top of the MacBook (the white border is the adhesive). It looks like it might take a good 10 minutes to carefully adhere it to my MacBook screen (I’m usually terrible at tasks like this), after which I will test it to see if it really helps with the glare. I like the idea of a screen protector, of course, but I’d love to cut down on the MacBook’s glossy screen’s glare.

I’ll also be spending at least 10 minutes when I bring the boys’ iMac back home and set it up again. The Apple store geniuses think there was a problem with the operating system, so they wiped the internal hard drive and reinstalled Leopard as well as iLife ’09. We have everything backed up on an external hard drive via Time Machine, but the geniuses want us to move everything back manually in case the problem also was backed up. Naturally, #1 son is worried he’ll lose some of his iTunes songs, but I think all will be right with his world.

Those TMTs are today’s get ’er dones!

Photo Friday

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 When I’m not shaking my head at my ineptness and/or slow reflexes, I must admit that I get a chuckle at some of my photo goofs. Of course, I might not think they were so funny if I wasn’t getting some decent photos along the way.

Since I had already turned in my middle school basketball photos to the yearbook staff, I mainly wanted to concentrate on taking good photos of two players whose moms have bought pictures from me in the past. Those two eighth-graders are pictured above . . . in photos that will never sell. Faces, got to see faces! What’s especially amusing about the middle photo is that both boys are pictured, not that you really can tell.

#33 back

Here’s another favorite from last night . . . no faces shown on either player! The photo is in focus and well-composed, but its only purpose is to show how not to take a good action shot. Fortunately, I’m through with indoor sports photography for the middle school; track is so much easier. And that will start in a couple weeks!

Daily iPod Touch update

pandoraThe news is good! #1 son finished putting all his songs on the Touch and actually ejected it from the iMac and used it. The news is mixed! What he was listening to was Pandora.com, his favorite internet radio station that’s a free application. I reminded him that he can only listen to it in a hot spot; otherwise, he’s “stuck” with his mere collection of a couple thousand songs. That kind of disappointed him.

I have a hard time listening to music and working at the computer. This inability to multitask must be part of my masculine side. Like most women, I’m used to multitasking in order to stay on top of things. I can watch TV and prepare meals and/or do laundry and/or read and/or surf the internet. The Mister’s idea of multitasking is watching TV and eating and/or using the remote (and he’s not all that savvy with the remote).

MacBook antiglare film update

nushield-logoI went to the Apple store and checked out the antiglare screen protector that they have. It’s $34.95! I wasn’t planning on spending more than $20, so I said no thank you to the helpful salesperson and went home to see what other MacBook users recommended. The one that was mentioned most in a positive way was NuShield. The cost was $17.99 plus $4.99 for shipping. I’ll give it a full review once it arrives and is applied.

Get ’er dones

As I’ve typed, I’ve burned a disk for my friend Ann, who I’m having lunch with. I had Photoshopped some iPhone photos of her son for her, and she wanted them on a CD. Mission accomplished!

My other major task today is to go through all my receipts and figure out what my expenses have been for my photography and graphic design mini-businesses last year. Romeo, our accountant who is responsible for handling our personal taxes as well as those for our business, called and said he’d like me to get on task sooner than later. He knows as well as I do that I’m an April 10th kind of gal (does this come as any surprise?), but I’m going to get cracking on this task. Of course, the receipts aren’t in any organized fashion, but the good news is I know where they all are (in a neat stack). I tell myself every April that I need to use something like Quick Books to organize my receipts, but 12 months later I’m back looking through the big stack.

Could be a get ’er done for the future!