2018 has made its way to our doors, blowing in the frigid days of winter. Gilbert embraces the cold, breaking out in his happy dance at the mention of a walk. Lu is not as enthusiastic, as it is a challenge to struggle into a jacket, hat and gloves, after a carpal tunnel release surgery.
Soon they are off on their rounds, to post office, drug or grocery store, and on this day, the bank. Gilbert is a bit of a ladies man, and cozies up to the staff, who give him treats and special attention. He especially loves popcorn day on Fridays and earns his keep by helpfully cleaning the popcorn spilled on the floor. Gilbert seems to stay on task, alerting Lu as he needs to. Once, he even alerted a diabetic staff teller at the bank.
Then they are off to Fit Express. After Lu’s workout, Gilbert will sometimes obligingly help Lu to dress for the outdoors. First, he retrieves Lu’s outdoor shoes and hands them to him. Next, he picks up Lu’s hat and brings it to him. After Lu places the hat on his head, Gilbert gets a gleam in his eye and his comical personality kicks in. He likes to play a little game by trying to wrestle Lu’s hat off his head. Finally, Gilbert snatches Lu’s gloves out of the pocket of his coat and presents them to him in his mouth, amusing those nearby.
I stick to my workout at home, riding my 3-wheeled indoor recumbent bike to the jazzy tunes of Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox. My favorites are takeoffs of the ‘30s and ‘40s tunes. He has modern jazz arrangements from old and pop tunes with very fine new artists. I like to put the pedal to the metal to very upbeat songs, getting a little cardio exercise in the bargain.
Gilbert is not as enthusiastic about my music as he tries to nap in the same room. Sometimes he lets out a huge sigh. We have noticed these sighs over the last year. His shoulders lift as he inhales and lets out an enormous whoosh of air. It is comically like a teenager with “attitude.”
As Lu comes into the kitchen, waiting for me to get my tea out of the microwave so he can heat something up, he lets out a big sigh. Hmmm? A revelation! I guess Gilbert has picked up his “attitude” from the top dog in his life.
If you happened to save the bones with some meat on them from the Thanksgiving or Christmas turkey, make turkey soup. Boil the saved bones (we started with a 13 pound turkey) in 2-3 quarts of water, the day before you make the soup, until the meat comes off the bones, usually a couple of hours. Then place the mixture in a cold place. The next day, skim the fat off the top. Then add: 2 to 3 chopped onions, a 1 pound bag of carrots, and about eight stalks of cut up celery. Simmer for a couple of hours, until the carrots are done. Taste and season accordingly, as the turkey will retain some of the flavor from the seasonings used for your holiday bird. Our bird had been stuffed with onions, lemons, and salt and pepper, and needed no further seasoning. This recipe makes a lot of soup and you will want to freeze some of it and then add more chicken stock to the base to make the soup the desired consistency. Then you can add noodles or rice or just serve with toast or crackers.