Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Squashing Dunderheaded Spending, Broiled Lamb Shoulder Chops and Cucumber Yogurt Sauce

I mentioned several weeks ago that my computer was acting up with a weird purple tint.  Well to follow up, it got progressively worse.  Now, had this happened before I got laid off, we would have immediately purchased a new computer at the very sight of a purple tint…regardless of how small and insignificant.  Hell just saying “purple tint” might have sent us to the store. That’s just what we did.  Looking back on it now our spending habits can only be defined as dunderheaded.  It was amazing how much we spent on crap.  Other than regaining my sanity, the best thing about getting laid off was a complete overhaul of the way we spend money. 
Old habits die hard, so as the purple tint got worse, we took the computer to the Geek Squad at Best Buy.  Naturally, we did not take the receipt.  The lady at the counter looked at the computer for about 2 minutes and said we needed a new one.  Diligence to the dunderhead spending philosophy dies slowly, so off we walked to the back of the store to look at new laptops.  After doing this for a few minutes, it slowly came back to us that this computer was less than a year old and buying a new this quick was, well…dunderheaded.

Once we got home, we located the receipt.  Duh…the computer was still under warranty.  Now I don’t mean the warranty you buy extra at the register - even in full dunderheaded mode you can still tell that is a stupid purchase.  We called Toshiba.  They went through a few things and no luck on fixing the laptop that way.  So they sent us a box and we mailed it to their “headquarters” (I’m sure there is a control tower there BTW).  Obviously, the 10 day separation from my laptop was traumatic, but we are wise spenders now and it isn’t like we don’t have a desktop, too. 
I got the computer back yesterday.  It is better than when I first purchased it.  They gave me a new palm rest, retooled everything and the keyboard that once didn’t light up completely lights up when I start to type.  I was totally impressed with this experience from Toshiba and taking the time to not be dunderheaded cost us exactly $0.
Naturally, we had a laptop coming home party.  The dinner I made was completely purchased with coupons and store specials.  It was easily 50% to 75% less than what we would have spent pre lay-off.  Well hell we wouldn’t have made dinner.  We would have taken our just purchased laptop out to dinner.  Dunderheads.

Broiled Lamb Shoulder Chops

½ cup orange juice
1 cup white wine
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 teaspoons of fresh thyme
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
¼ teaspoon ground pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil

Blend marinade in blender, just a few pulses until well mixed.

Place lamb chops and marinade in a plastic bag.  Squeeze as much of the air out as possible from the bag and seal.  Marinate for several hours in the refrigerator.  Remove the lamb from the bag at least an hour before cooking to help bring the lamb closer to room temperature.

Broil on high 5 to 7 minutes per side.

Cucumber-Yogurt Sauce

1 ½ cups plain yogurt
1 cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped
3 tablespoons fresh parsley
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground cumin

Stir all ingredients together, cover and chill.

Greek Salad

Spring mix salad
Feta cheese
Greek vinaigrette dressing

Chocolate Covered Strawberries
Just melt some bittersweet chocolate and dip those berries in there!

Another bottle from Laithwaites Wines!


  1. Laid off or not, it's never, ever, ever, ever, ever (did I mention "EVER" ?) a good idea to solicit the Geek Squad for computer service.

  2. Haha! Duly noted and lesson learned.