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I Love a ListAugust 9, 2013

1. A Dream I Had (NO! Come back! Please?) 

In the dream, I am walking past a payphone. It rings. I answer. My (deceased) little mama is on the other end. 

"What's it like where you are?" I ask, when I get over my shock.

"It's nice," she says. "It's not anything like you'd imagine, though. I like it." 

"Can you see me all the time?" Thinking, oh, crap.

"Well, I guess I could if I needed to, but I don't." 

Whew. I hand the phone to a passerby. "Hey, can you hear anyone on this line?" 

Guy listens. "Yeah," he says, handing it back. "It's your mom." 

"Mom!" I say. "You're really there! Why don't you ever call me?" 

She answers in exasperation, "Landline, Rachael. We can only call on landlines, and you got rid of yours." 

It was really a sweet dream. And I was happy to know she likes where she is. (And yes, we got rid of our landline. As a 911 dispatcher who preaches that you should always have one, and always call from it for faster and more accurate service, I was pretty unhappy when California shut off the thing that allowed all landlines to call 911, with or without service. Now it's $25/month just to have service to call 911 and nothing else. I'm not paying $300 a year for a service I can call on my cell phone (with, granted, a delay).)

2. What Lala sends me while I'm at work in the middle of the night. I believe this is cruel and unusual. 


Apparently Digit got on the couch and stared at Clementine (who was terrified of him, as usual) for ten minutes before curling up, TOUCHING her. Gah. I can't stand it. The ear! Digit is an old softie now. I barely recognize him. I have not even one healing scar right now. Who is this cat? 

3. Easy Thai Red Curry. 

I'm obsessed with red curry right now. Obsessed. This is a recipe I modified from somewhere (?), and it is SO EASY and SO FAST and SO GOOD. And if you make it with chickpeas instead of chicken, it's vegan! (I made it for a dinner party which needed to be gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegetarian. No small task. Oh! Link came from Mary-Heather, that's right.)


Chop a chicken breast or two, toss in a large heavy skillet over medium heat in olive oil and some salt until it goes white and not scary-looking (but don't overcook it. Whatever that means). Set meat aside. In same pan, heat 1tbs coconut oil. Add 2 chopped leeks, a chopped red pepper, some salt and pepper. Cover and cook on medium heat until veggies have softened, maybe 5 minutes. Add 2 tsp(ish) of minced garlic (or more!) and a tsp of grated ginger (or more!).* Add 1-2 tbs of red curry paste (not powder. For this you want the paste. I like Mae Ploy). Stir to coat, cook another 5 minutes. Add half a cup chopped sugar snap peas (swoon), a 14oz can of full-fat coconut milk, and the cooked chicken. Raise heat to boil, then lower to simmer. At the end, throw in a good handful of chopped cilantro

Serve on cauliflower rice (or normal rice, but dude, cauliflower rice doesn't get soggy and it's so good and easy. You can chop it in your food processor while the curry is cooking, and BAM. 30 minute meal). 

* I use minced garlic and chopped ginger because I'm lazy. Here's the red curry paste I like. I only use 1 tbs in this recipe because I'm sensitive to heat, and this stuff is spicy. 


You make such good lists!

This is so many kinds of wonderful...and DIGIT!! more old man, pleeeze...

I love each and every part of this post.

That dish sounds SO GOOD! Must try it soon... I have a vegan gluten-free dinner to plan...

Dreams are so fascinating!

Psst! There's an unadvertised cheaper land line service for $11 plus fees (at least there was a couple years ago). You can only call local numbers with it and it's ridiculously expensive to call long distance (long distance? what's that??). We have it because our house alarm system needed a phone line, but the 911 perk is handy, too.

I hope my late parents got the memo about my changing the landline's number. (Sorry, Mom and Dad, your old number is gone because Frontier didn't play nice and charged too much, and TimeWarner pre-CBS fiasco offered me a sweet deal I couldn't pass up, but our number got lost in the process.)

They come to me in my dreams all the time. My Dad phoned me shortly after he died to tell me, "It's about Mother..." three weeks before she was diagnosed. Last week, he told me something very sage and wise. I wrote it down, good thing, because I'd love to share here and cannot remember. Something about words getting in the way of really knowing someone.

Good Digit.

I love the phone call! Don't you get an extra warm fuzzy when that happens?

Your dream reminds me of one I had once about my grandma. I used to keep a blog, but shut it down after a while. After I shut down the blog, I had a dream that I was sitting on a couch with my grandma in what felt like a kind of anteroom. She told me she was sad that I wasn't blogging any more, because she was reading my blog to keep up with what was going on in my life! The dream felt very real, and like your dream about your little mama, it felt very sweet.

I just read your recent memoir, btw, and enjoyed it very much

I had a dream about my mother last night and woke up and called her on my cellphone. Haven't deleted her number and really thought I could at least leave a message.

I have her last voice mail to me "Kathleen? Kathleen? I guess you are locked up in prison. It's your Mother. Happy Birthday!"

Old men cats get like that. My Danny was the most non person cat ever (except maybe Digit). He liked me and that was it. Granted if I ran out of cat food all bets were off. Chased down the hall by him one morning. His last year he would lay on the floor and let my KIDS pet him. KIDS! He hated kids. Your Digit reminds me of him with the personality and coloring. Love grey tabbies. But Danny was 2-3 times bigger. He was a large cat. Topped out at 22 lbs. Anyway, got to love old men cats. They are so lovely.

This comment has nothing to with this post, but I couldn't find a place to leave a comment on one of your books, so I decided to leave it here. If there's a better spot, please let me know and I'll post it there instead.

I bought "A Life in Stitches" ages ago, when the Kindle store had it on sale. But I hadn't read it, until now. I've been reading every night in bed, and especially enjoying the chapters on events that I remember from your blog (I'm a long-time reader, but rare commenter). I loved the chapter about Digit, as I remember so well when he came home to you. I cried as much reading about it in your book as I did reading about it on your blog.

And then, last night, I read the chapter "Blanket Stitch". I got all choked up, because I remember when you got your blanket, and when you contacted me to be part of Zoom's blanket. And then, I discovered that I'M IN YOUR BOOK! And here I've had it on my kindle for months! I don't have a big part, but I'm definitely there. It's the part where you're opening packages of blanket squares, and you write ""Ooh!" I'd cry. "Look at this one! It has a whole garden on it. Oh! It's Zoom's community garden! There are her carrots!"

Dude! That was my square!

It took great restraint not to wake up my partner who was sleeping beside me. But I waited until morning to read him the passage.

I loved designing and knitting that square. I even pulled out an old embroidery book I had to learn to embroider the vegetables on in. I had always said that I was a skilled technical knitter, but I wasn't very creative. I stopped saying that after making that square, because I had shown myself that I was creative! I'm very proud of that garden. And by the way, the carrots where my favourite part too!

I didn't even take a picture before I sent it off. The only pictures I have are the pictures of the whole blanket on Zoom's blog, which I have bookmarked. I'm thrilled that it's also part of your book. Thank you :)

What a lovely dream from your Mama! A few months ago, I had one from my Daughter, where I go to hear her sing again. It was so wonderful, and I want more!

Digit so reminds me of my late kitty, Caliope (affectionately called "She Who Hates All Things"). In her last few months she would even cuddle with my black kitty Burt, who she loathed beyond all reasoning. In the last few weeks, he would escort her when she meandered outside the house. Now, he sleeps in her spot on the bed. It is bittersweet.

Thanks for the recipe. Looks yummy!

Love the dream!! And I'm making the recipe...thanks.

What a nice dream!

(land line? What land line? I think I have one patient right now with a land line. And the cell phones come in and out of service, depending on finances.)

I'm leaving a hug in your comments, because I feel like a hug for you and/or me.

Digit! What a sweet boy!

:)So good.

I so love that you shared your dream. Very sweet.
I've heard similar dreams with the telephone and loved ones calling looooonnnng distance from friends.
Hmmm. What if you dreamed yourself back to that payphone, placed a call and asked who answers to connect you with your Mom? Could be interesting.
And so glad to see the Digit starting to channel all that love he's been receiving all these years.
Really. When is the story of Digit the wandering cat that followed the love back home coming out? What a great kids story. Ebook! Ebook!

Girl I love curry you have no idea !!!!!

Since I read this post, I have dreamed about my father twice. He has been dead for thirty years and would've been 100 this year. It was nice. Thanks for posting and perhaps awakening my subconscious somehow....

Oh, is that the sweetest phone call ever? Yes, I think it is. XOX

Two things; Cant wait to try the red Thai Curry (searching for Mae Ploy, who knew Amazon could furnish this?) and thank you for clearing up the land line/cell phone 911 "stuff" for me. Also, (make that 3 things) I think that the suggestion that phone msgs from the "beyond" on come via land line just might hold water. Anyone I would want to hear from passed pre cell phone days....now I know why they haven't called. :-)

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Rachael loves it when book clubs read her work! She's happy to attend book clubs that read her books either in person or via Skype. Contact her at rachael@rachaelherron.com to make arrangements.


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