December 19th, 2021 at 10:18 pm
It's hard to fathom that Christmas is less than a week away! This year has flown by!
Our British dinner a week ago was a success. We all made new recipes and realized there was a certain thrill to trying the unknown. We liked everything and I ordered those Christmas crackers and those were an absolute hoot. The other two couples are good sports about being willing to try new things. Although the dinner wasn't cheap, I'm sure it was still far cheaper than going out to a fancy restaurant. We all provided different things. And with this being the second year of Covid, it was just nice to have a little normalcy.
Christmas shopping has been finished and paid for so no January surprises there. I spent a lot in postage, both for Christmas cards and packages. Last year I sent two packages that took over a month to get to their destinations. This year things went better. Seems the place I mailed them last year has a worker (it's a post office annex, not the post office) who apparently doesn't know what she is doing, and puts something on them that sends them all over. One was to go to San Francisco and it went to LA, then SF, then came all the way back to Kentucky, then back to Springfield, Illinois, then finally back to San Francisco. The other one was to go to Terre Haute which is two hours away and it sat in Springfield for almost a month. I take them to a small town post office near us now and so far, have had no issues which is a blessing after last year's debacle.
Unless things get locked down, 2022 may be a very spendy year for us. We have some trips planned as well as a bathroom remodel. We have the money in savings so it isn't like we have to go get loans, but we are both retired, and we figure if we can travel, we should before we get too handicapped to do so.
We visited with a couple the other day and it's interesting that when you think people are the same as you are, then realize they are not. Don't get me wrong, I'm not criticizing. But, they were talking about some issues they have. They are always looking for a deal. Seems she saw some ad on Facebook for some shoes that she thought were name brand, but seems they were a knock off and the name on them was similar, but not the same, but only discovered it after she received the two pairs she ordered -- not well made and the soles are slick, not treaded. Apparently they cannot be returned and they were less than half of what the name brand would have cost. The other thing was they received a notice from a company that claimed since they were good customers, they could pick a prize and only pay postage of $5.95 or something like that. So, they picked something, and gave their credit card number to pay the postage. Well, besides the postage, another charge of over $70 was added. These are not stupid people, but we believe they have gotten scammed. It is just scary!
Hope all of you have a Merry Christmas and let's hope 2022 is a successful year for all of us!
December 7th, 2021 at 08:36 pm
Sadly I'm a bit behind in keeping up with blogs. The past couple of weeks have been a bit busy, but I'm not complaining one bit. I'm trying to catch up!
We delivered hats and dish cloths after Thanksgiving that our Stitches of Love group made. I am working on researching who we may be making hats for in 2022. We delivered a bunch to our local CASA as well as a women's homeless shelter and to a school.
Our church had its Christmas bazaar. Some things were changed due to Covid, but it was still pretty successful. I baked 26 dozen cookies in addition to some sweet breads and a pan of fudge that was cut and packaged. I also made some things for the craft section.
I believe we sent over 75 Christmas cards. Yes, I know that people don't think that is economical, but honestly, I like doing it and my husband who calls himself a Ludite when it comes to technology so enjoys when we receive Christmas cards back. I'm anal enough that I draw lines on the envelopes because I cannot write straight to save my life.
Fortunately my shopping is finished and we had saved money throughout the year so everything is paid for. Yay!
Two other couples are getting together and we are going to create a British Christmas dinner for Saturday. I looked for a cookbook in the thrift stores with recipes and eventually found one, but between that and doing research online, I found some recipes I thought we could use. I ordered some Christmas crackers which should be fun. I've already told everyone we all have to wear the crowns that come with the crackers.
A friend from church nicely loaned me the newest John Grisham novel after he finished reading it. I read it in two days and was pleased. I had put my name on the reserve list at the library. I read a lot of books but honestly cannot see purchasing a book that I'll read once. That was just a joy to get it so much sooner!
A man at church does not have any techy skills, so I signed him up for his Covid booster. I had gotten him his original two vaccines. Honestly, it is a shame that so many places make it so hard for people to do stuff who cannot use technology. He was in an auto accident a number of years ago and just cannot do the technology due to a brain injury. I did the same for a lady at church too.
Like many, it has been a spendy few weeks, but we have saved the money and figure we might as well enjoy ourselves a little bit. We aren't going into debt.
Hope everyone is doing well and staying healthy.
November 21st, 2021 at 07:51 pm
I find it hard to believe Thanksgiving is almost here. But then again, I saw the crazy grocery shopping start this week, so that should have been a been indication. We got to the stores early for our weekly trip and by the time we left the second store, the parking lot was getting quite full.
I have to admit I'm a bit jealous of those of you who earned free turkeys! Sadly our stores did not have any of those great offers. I remember growing up, my father would be given a turkey for Thanksgiving and a ham for Christmas. I wonder if many employers do that anymore.
I invited a friend from church to join us for Thanksgiving. I had invited some others, but they had better offers. No, I'm kidding. They were already invited so that was fine. I just don't want to see someone spend the holiday alone.
Our church Christmas bazaar is coming up. I'm not sure how they are going to do it with the Covid requirements, but knowing these ladies, they will work something out. We wear masks at church and for any activities, and they wear gloves during the bazaar, so I imagine that will continue to be a part of it. They are not having a luncheon like they used to.
I hope you have many things to be grateful for this year. I know I do.
November 12th, 2021 at 09:14 pm
November is flying by! I feel like I'm on a speeding train or something.
We had our Stitches of Love group yesterday at church. We have made 851 hats this year, 37 baby hats, 46 scarves, 30 blankets, and 186 dish cloths. The hats and scarves will be donated to kids' charities. I am working to make 14 more dish cloths so we have 200 for Christmas baskets for one of our food pantries to put in their Christmas baskets. The blankets we sent to a nonprofit called "Blankets from Ben." We made fewer hats and scarves this year due to Covid and the death of one person. Our group is pretty small, so even having over 800 is an accomplishment.
In other things, I pulled a turkey breast from the freezer yesterday and put it in the fridge. I had bought a couple of them from Aldi and when I went to fix them, they aren't as good as they once were. I wonder if the farm is different where they get them had problems or what, but we didn't like them. I hate to throw them out and honestly, I would be embarrassed to donate them, so I decided I wanted to make some broth. I realized about 5 quarts of rich turkey broth. I plan to make soup tomorrow and wanted some broth and I will freeze the rest and thaw closer to Thanksgiving. As expensive as food is, I just hate to waste it.
Speaking of expensive, our grocery bill seems to be more expensive every week. And it is weird what is missing from the shelves. We are limited as far as grocery stores in my city. We have Aldi and Kroger and Walmart. I don't shop Walmart if I don't have to. Aldi had empty shelves as far as mandarin oranges and applesauce this last week as well as evaporated milk. I didn't want the mandarin oranges or applesauce, I just noticed it when I went to pick up a can of peaches to replace the can I used. Kroger doesn't have cans of red beans. They have kidney beans and Navy beans, but not red beans. They haven't had any beans other than their store brand for years so it sort of limits one if one is shopping for beans. I just thought it was weird what was missing from the shelves. I wondered if it was that way everywhere. Anything in particular not showing up on your grocery shelves?
October 24th, 2021 at 08:38 pm
Lots of rain today -- woke up to a storm and could just hear the rain pelting down. I guess we have a chance of bad storms tonight. Certainly hope that doesn't come to pass.
I went out and picked a few things from the little bit that remains of our garden. I want to make some soup for this week and use up some vegetables I have in the bin. I waited until it stopped raining for a bit.
We had purchased a bus trip in 2019 for 2020 and of course could not go. We did get to go this year and went to the Laurel Highlands to see two of Frank Lloyd Wright designed homes: Fallingwater and Kentuck Knob. Both were really amazing in their own way. Kentuck Knob is supposed to be Usonian which supposedly is for the average man -- but with the final cost, I don't think it was for the average man, but cool nonetheless to visit. Fallingwater was, of course, amazing. We had budgeted money to eat out and buy a few things. My purchases were basically postcards. DH did find a shirt he wanted. But, we used money we had saved so we aren't in debt. Of course the trip was totally paid for in 2019 and to be honest, I was a little worried we might lose that money if the travel business went under. Fortunately we did not. We enjoy our time away and got to see a part of the country we had not been to so that was really cool. But, I can tell you, it was mighty nice to sleep in our own bed when we returned.
I have tried to finish my Christmas shopping. I thought I had succeeded, but one item did not fit DH so I will have to return it and see if I can get something that does. But, other than buying stamps for the Christmas cards we send, I believe I am finished. I know they have said there might be problems getting things, but hopefully people will have planned ahead if they planned on shopping.
October 10th, 2021 at 10:26 pm
Years and years ago I started an IRA when I worked a number of part time jobs. None of my jobs would allow me to put in money before taxes, but I saved up and started an IRA on my own. This was before the beautiful thing called a Roth IRA came about. Anyway, I wasn't making much, but decided the fact I was young and compound interest would be my friend.
When I finally got hired full time as a teacher, I went to a financial advisor and we opened a wonderful 403b. We let my IRA money basically alone which was fine. So, after over 30 years, I have made some money on my investment. It isn't huge, less than $10,000, but it is mine.
However, the original company sold out to another company. A few years later that company was bought out. and now in 2021, another company has taken over. This last company, doesn't seem to be a really good one. So, my financial advisor and I decided we would move it to another IRA that I have. Shouldn't be an issue, right?
Wrong! I filled out a bunch of papers and they were sent in and within 24 hours, we were told they were not the right papers, although these were the ones the person on the phone said we needed. So, another batch of paperwork was filled out and then we heard nothing. Finally we called and spoke with someone and they said that they were just getting around to processing the papers. I had to sit in the office with my financial guy as he asked questions (I'm glad he knew what to ask) and then verify everything, and he took copious notes. They thought maybe the money would clear in the next 24 hours, but she wasn't sure. The paperwork itself done by the company was one big mess -- they sent me a statement, but instead of using my Social Security number, they were using the tax number for my financial guy, and had the wrong address.
I'm happy to report that three months have passed since we first put in to transfer the money and it is no longer with this company. Fortunately my financial guy knew the questions to ask, and what to do, and called repeatedly. It is scary when you think a big company screwed up the paperwork to begin with and then took almost three months to give me what was rightfully mine. It is now in an IRA where things are done correctly. But wow!
September 26th, 2021 at 08:55 pm
One of the things I've been doing is trying some new recipes. I like to challenge myself and see if I can make new stuff. I did two things this week and both I felt were a success.
One was making zucchini marmalade. A friend had dropped off some zucchini so I felt like I could experiment. The link to the recipe is found here:
The other was a buttermilk corn bread, but instead of putting it a square pan or cast iron skillet, it was baked in a loaf pan. It isn't as rich as the one I normally make, but DH pronounced it good. He must have liked it, he had three slices! Anyway, here's the recipe:
Buttermilk Corn Bread Loaf
1 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1 tablespoon of white granulated sugar
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
1/2 cup of shortening
1 1/3 cups buttermilk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 inch loaf pan. Set aside.
Combine flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda in a medium bowl. Cut in shortening with pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles course crumbs.
Whisk together buttermilk and eggs in small bowl. Make a well in the center of dry ingredients. Add buttermilk mixture, stir until mixture forms stiff batter. Batter will be lumpy.
Pour into prepared pan and smooth so mixture is even. Lift pan and let it hit the counter a couple of times to remove air bubbles.
Bake 50 to 55 minutes or until toothpick inserted in cetner comes out clean. Cook in pan on wire rack for 10 mintes and then remove from pan and cool on the rack for 10 minutes. Serve warm.
Makes one loaf.
DH's 75th birthday is tomorrow. I have a cake cooling in the kitchen. We plan to go out to dinner tomorrow night and figured he might not want to have cake after a big meal, so I decided to bake it a day early. He was all over that with grins. So, after it cools, I plan to frost it. I actually doubled the recipe. A friend had her mom die overnight, so I'm putting together some food to take over to their house and thought a cake might be OK. I am using one of those foil pans so they don't have to worry about bringing back the pan.
September 21st, 2021 at 07:13 pm
The past couple of weeks I've stayed busy, but nothing really earth shattering. I thought I was finished canning, but did wind up with some more tomatoes. Then a friend gave us some zucchini which I'm working on using. I made some zucchini relish, and am itching to try zucchini marmalade. We purchased a half share of CSA this summer and there were cucumbers in it, so I made some sweet relish too.
It's hard to believe September is nearly over. DH's 75th birthday is Monday. I plan to bake him a chocolate cake and we hope to go out for supper. I spent some time cross stitching some towels for Christmas baskets as well as crocheting some dish cloths. I plan to make those little baskets up with those and some jams, jellies, and relish.
There was a spot on the news a couple nights ago saying to do one's Christmas shopping early because they think there might be shortages of stuff. I hope they aren't just saying that to put people in panic mode again. Other than DH, my shopping is basically finished. He usually tells me some clothes he wants. We give money to those who do things like cut our hair.
The group at church branched out a little this year and we adopted a group that gives blankets to people who donate organs of loved ones. We made 30 blankets and I mailed them yesterday. We continue to make hats and scarves and dish cloths.
I guess we are saving money because other than the normal stuff like groceries and medicine, we aren't going shopping. There isn't much of anything I need or want at this point, except for people to stay healthy and the Pandemic to end.
September 4th, 2021 at 08:06 pm
Sadly, I think my canning is over for this year. I think we have enough, but I always like to have extra on hand. DH had a good tomato crop, but he grew more heirlooms and they don't produce as many. But they sure were tasty.
A few months ago I found this small weaving loom at a thrift store. Someone donated some rug yarn at church and no one wanted to use it -- a couple of skeins are not going to make much of anything plus it is rough stuff to work with. I decided to use it and make a scrubby for myself. I'm almost finished. I plan to donate the loom when I finish because it is OK, but nothing I really want to use. I did use one of the skeins to make a crocheted basket and one of the other ladies wanted it so I gave it to her.
We continue to work on hats and scarves with the church knitting group. I finished a scarf and had some yarn left over. I saw a pattern using the rings from milk jugs and have been saving a few of them. You crochet around them to make a mini wreath ornament. So, I did that since the yarn was green, then made a dish cloth and used up the rest of the yarn. We have been making dish cloths to donate to one of the food pantries and women's shelter. A friend of mine is involved with the local CASA group and asked if we could provide hats for the kids so that is one of the groups we intend to give the hats to.
I had some yarn left over from a hat and I used it to crochet a small bag to hold soap. I guess you can put a whole bar in it, but on a couple of the frugal sites, you put in parts of bars and then use that to keep the pieces together and lather up. I made myself one a few months ago and it did work. So, the bag is going to a friend for Christmas, but I'm going to include a whole bar of soap with hers. I also crocheted a dish cloth and then a smaller dish cloth and attached it to a scrubby. I'm not making as many Christmas presents this year simply because I haven't had the initiative. A lady and I were talking about this at church. She's a big crafts person and she said lately she hasn't felt like doing much of anything either. I'm wondering if the fact the Pandemic seems to never end and if we are just getting mind weary of it all.
We received some much needed rain here today. DH is delighted because he was worrying about the yard browning. He hopes it will bring it back. I used the time inside to clean and organize the linen closet which I have been procrastinating about. It wasn't as bad I as thought, but I still was dreading it.
The first Tuesday of the month, our Walgreens has senior day where if you are 55 or older, you can get a percentage off of anything not on sale. This doesn't include prescriptions however. But, I often try to make a list of things we use and often are not on sale and save a bit stocking up. It's fall and I'm in my stock up mode anyway on so many levels. Anyway, I'm making my list for that. We don't need a ton, but saving a bit here and there is always pleasant.
August 24th, 2021 at 04:25 pm
In my last blog post, I commented I started a new book that had coffee recipes. It was a murder mystery by Emmeline Duncan called, "Fresh Brewed Murder." The main character, Sage, runs a coffee cart with her business partner Harley.
One fellow blogger asked that I share some of the recipes.
Simple Sage Syrup
2 cups water
2 cups sugar (can be white, brown, etc.)
20 fresh sage leaves
Bring water to a boil in saucepan and add sugar until it melts. Add the sage leaves and let it simmer about a minute, then turn off the heat. Let mixture seep for 45 minutes. Strain the mixture through a sieve into a closeable, airtight contaner. Sage syrup will last up to two weeks in the fridge.
Mason Jar Cold Brew Coffee
4 cups of water
3/4 cup of course coffee grounds
Mix four cups of water and the 3/4 cup of coffee grounds in an appropriately sized jar and screw on the lid. Place in the refrigerator for 12 - 24 hours. When the coffee has brewed to your liking, strain it into a clean pitcher or jar. Service over ice and wilute with water or milk at a 1:1 ratio or to taste. To sweeten, add in simple syrup.
Sage Coffee Soda
3/4 cup of cold bre concentrate
1 tablespoon of sage simple syrup (or to taste)
3/4 cup of club soda
Mix the cold brew concentrate and simple syrup in a wide mouth, pint sized Mason jar or glass of our choosing. Add ice to the top of the glass, then slowly pour in the club soda. Light mix.
Sage Tea Soda
Tea of your choice(black, green, white)
1 tablespoon of sage simple syrup
3/4 cup of club soda
Make your tea concentrate. You'll want to dramatically up your ratio of tea leaves to water. Or tea bags. Don't steep longer, just make the tea stronger, not bitter. Brew the tea for the usual amount of time.
Mix the syrup, ice and club soda and enjoy!
August 22nd, 2021 at 06:54 pm
It's been a great summer of eating well. Between DH's garden and our CSA share box, we've had some marvelous eats! Hopefully I will get enough canned and preseved for a good winter as well. Today, at church, one of our pew buddies said his dad picked two large zucchini and did I want them? Of course I wanted them! If nothing else, I will shred them and freeze it. I bought the share box to force myself to try new things as well as enjoy some of our favorites. I never thought DH would go along with it, but sometimes we don't have a starch for supper -- just some protein and some vegetables and fruit for dessert. That makes me happy because I think we probably eating far better.
I accidently sent a photo of one of our suppers to a friend in an email. I meant to send it to another one and autofill got me. As I hit "send" I realized it was the wrong person. So, I had to send a follow up "oops" email, but then we started talking about what we both had for supper that night. He then mentioned something to do with genealogy, which got me to thinking, and I discovered he is distantly related to my husband after doing a bunch of research. That's kind of interesting. At least to me.
I found a new author of a mystery series. It's about someone who runs a coffee cart. It has some interesting coffee recipes in the back that I think I might want to try. I've getting a little more adventuresome when it comes to cooking, probably because I did so much of it when stuff what shut down. I fear it's going to come to that as Covid cases continue to rise.
I did some closet cleaning yesterday and have a bunch of things to donate to a thrift store. I need to do some more decluttering too around the house. I was proud of myself yesterday. We went to an antique mall and although there was a blue willow tea pot that I did not own, I did not get it. I didn't need it and honestly, don't have room to display it. I admired it and walked on.
DH just went to go water the garden, so I may need to get myself into the kitchen in case there are some tomatoes that need to be processed and canned. At least I hope so!
Hope your summer is going well!
August 19th, 2021 at 03:13 pm
Recently I mentioned that we bought a half share in a CSA this summer. It has been great -- all those fresh vegetables and I'm being challenged to use things I normally would not have purchased. I was delighted to get a zucchini. I know there are those jokes about people giving people zucchini in secret to get rid of them, but sadly, I don't know anyone who grows zucchini. Anyway. I ran across this recipe and decided to try it for a change. DH had a piece last night and declared it delicious. I did not make the cream cheese icing, instead just made the glaze with the orange juice, powdered sugar and butter. But felt it was a good use of vegetables and a nice treat too. Just thought I'd share in case any of you have some garden vegetables you'd like to utilize.
Carrot Apple Zucchini Bread:
August 15th, 2021 at 09:17 pm
I know I'm usually out of step with whatever is the current trend. I'm OK with that.
Let me briefly explain. For a time in my life, I wanted silence. Being a music lover, that was strange, but I didn't want music or talk or television or anything while I did things around the house or while I was in the car.
Recently everything has become more pronounced in my life. Music seems sweeter. My enjoyment is immense.
DH has quite a collection of CDs, and one of them was the greatest hits of ABBA - very upbeat and fun. Except DH isn't always the most careful and the middle of the CD is damaged. Very discouraging when I wanted to listen to one of my favorites: "Money, money, money!" (OK, imagine that, eh?)
I decided I would splurge and go to Target and buy a new one. Imagine my chagrin to discover Target no longer carries them. We have no music stores in our town so that is out. I refuse to go to what I term the evil empire aka Walmart. So, I figured I would just have to do without.
On our weekly thrift shop foray one place was selling CDs for a quarter each. And you guessed it, ABBA was in the group of them. Of course I snatched that up! What a delight. What a joy! What a bargain! How fortuitous!
So, apparently CDs are passe. All the better for me -- a quarter for some great tunes!
August 8th, 2021 at 07:31 pm
The last couple of weeks have kept me busy dealing with stuff from our garden. I'm not complaining by any means. I'm glad we have the fresh food and have either prepared it or figured out a way to preserve it. DH just pulled up all our garlic and I spent most of yesterday afternoon working with about 2/3 of it. I plan, once I finish this, to go finish up. I peel it, wash it, mince it, and then pack into jars with olive oil, and then store it in the fridge. Yesterday I had about 4 pints, so I think I'll get another pint or so. I share some of it. I also hold back some of the garlic bulbs so DH can plant it again for next year's crop.
His tomatoes started coming on early and once we got enough, I started canning. I can regular tomatoes, make tomato juice, and also make what I call spaghetti sauce with tomatoes, bell peppers, onions, garlic, mushrooms, basil, and oregano. I will need to start drying herbs for the winter as well, but right now, the tomatoes are keeping me busy.
We bought a half share in a local CSA so I have been using what has come every week. One reason I did that was I wanted the challenge of never knowing what would show up and then being forced to use it. We've tried things I never would have tried before so that is good.
A friend gave me some bunch of cucumbers so I made sweet pickles and sweet relish.
I did a count on stuff I've canned so far. Some of it is from finding things on sale like fruits to make jelly. The green beans weren't on sale, but I prefer canning my own. But these are the totals of what I have on hand. I have actually canned more, but we've used it.
4 pints and 1 half pint of sweet relish
2 half pints of sweet pickles
6 quarts, one half pint of tomatoes
5 quarts, 8 pints of tomato juice
6 quarts, 16 pints of spaghetti sauce
12 quarts, 4 pints of green beans
9 quarts 2 pints, and 1 half pint of applesauce
12 quarts of apple juice
6 half pints of apple jelly
5 half pints of grape jelly
1 pint 2 half pints of lavender jelly
6 half pints of blueberry jelly.
I'm looking forward to when DH gets bigger bell peppers because I plan to wash and chop,and freeze them to use over the winter. I was in sticker shock earlier this summer when I had to buy a couple since I had run out!
July 25th, 2021 at 07:02 pm
Life has been busy. I'm not complaining though.
DH's garden is starting to produce. He picked over 70 tomatoes and I made spaghett sauce with his onions, garlic, bell peppers, tomatoes, oregano, and basil. I realized 10 pints yesterday, plus two pints of tomato juice and one pint of just plain tomatoes. I used to basically do quarts, but a pint will make up a meal for us. I still can quarts, but use it for soups and stews. Since it has been extremely hot and humid, DH has spent a lot of time watering his garden.
We took a day trip to Fairfield, Iowa. That is about 4 hours northwest of us. It was a nostalgia trip for me. My great aunt lived there and when I was a little girl, I would go and spend a week in the summer with her. It's been 43 years since I've visited, and I wanted to go back one more time to see if the place had changed a lot. My aunt had an apartment in a huge old house; I looked it up last fall and saw it was no longer an apartment house, but a single family home. I wrote a letter to the owners (I didn't know their names, just put to the owners of and the address) and sent photos I had taken when I was a kid and asked them to realize it was taken with an Instamatic and I was a kid when I took them, and shared the sweet memories I had of the place. Much to my surprise I received a nice note back from one of the owners thanking me for the photos and a little history of the house and how they have worked to keep the original woodwork and plaster. So, it was nice to see it in person. I didn't go up in the yard or to the door. I also talked to the cataloguer at the local library about sharing some photos and other stuff from my great aunt and uncle for their genealogy department and will be sending that stuff along as soon as I label it. Anyway, I'm trying to post a photo of the house below:
I went to give blood three weeks ago and much to my chagrin, I was deferred. I have never been turned away. I was told my blood pressure was too low. Which of course made me worry that something was wrong with me. Fortunately I had a physical scheduled for the next day and my blood pressure was normal. Thinking back on it, I don't think the two people at the blood drive wanted to be bothered with me. I realized that the bp cuff wasn't very tight and one started the procedure and then said her boss wanted her and someone else would finish with me and that person didn't act like he was pleased being pulled over. I gave this past week with no problems at all, so I'm thinking it wasn't me that had the problem to begin with. With the shortage of blood, you'd think people would get over their petty little issues at work.
The maid didn't show up yet again, so I see lots of housework in my future. But I try to remind myself that I'm blessed to have a home to clean.
July 11th, 2021 at 07:02 pm
Clothes shopping is just not my thing.
Years ago TLC had a program called "What Not To Wear" and I loved watching it and seeing how they helped people be their personal best. Being someone who has always struggled with weight issues, every time they had someone who was overweight, it captured my interest even more. So many times those ladies would leave the stores in tears. I felt their pain because that is what it was like for me. Being short and overweight did not make it a good experience. Plus, much of the stuff out there is just plain ugly. So, I would wear the same stuff over and over until it was so worn out and I would be forced to and find something and then the whole painful process would start.
So, as I got older and made a little more money, I ventured to a couple of stores that I never would have thought of walking into. A couple of weeks ago we went to a store we haven't visited since before the Pandemic to buy some slacks and some blouses. One of the ladies took me to the dressing room and told me to let her pick out things and try them all on, even if I didn't think I'd like them. I discovered something -- I have been buying the wrong size in pants. She found me slacks that not only fit better, but I didn't have to hem them. She found blouses that were flattering. I tried on way more things than I bought, but we looked at things that I would not have looked at and it was amazing. One time I didn't leave clothes shopping in tears!
I honestly feel better about myself thinking that the clothes look good. That made it worth the extra money for me.
June 29th, 2021 at 04:09 pm
I made my husband cry.
It wasn’t planned. I wasn’t attempting to do that at all.
Last week a friend died. She had a good long life, although as humans we often crave to live longer and wish our loved ones do as well. When her daughter called to tell me of her passing, there was a catch in her throat and my heart went out to her.
This friend was the person I wished I had had as a mother. I know you can’t always know what really goes on in people’s homes behind closed doors, but her treatment of me had always been nothing but kind. She seemed wise. I met her and her family at church and she was the one who struck up the friendship. I was kind of shy to begin with and due to never feeling like I’m good enough, suffered poor self esteem. She was just nice to me. She would seek me out to speak to me. When I was in college she wrote me letters. When I student taught and lived out of town, she said if the weather was bad, don’t drive in bad conditions, but come stay at her house because she had an extra bedroom. When I came back after college and lived here, we kept up with each other and after her husband died, we would sometimes go out to eat or I would go and visit her.
Last week when I stopped in to see her family, it about broke my heart. One son was in tears. The other two sons as caretakers were wan. They were exhausted. What they did, they did for love and they were kind and respected her wishes.
I held things together talking to the daughter on the phone, and even afterwards. I didn’t break down seeing the sons. Even at the visitation I was OK. But near the end of the funeral, I broke down and cried. And as a result, my husband cried with me because he said when I hurt, he hurts. As I said, I didn’t plan to make him cry.
My friend was ready to go; she was 98 ½ and her health was declining. As Christians, we believe we will go to heaven. It’s just that I will miss her kindness. I wonder if she knew how she touched my life and made me dream of what it would be like to have a “normal” family life.
I just hope that somehow I’m showing an equal amount of kindness to people so that maybe, just maybe they’ll miss me too when I die.
June 7th, 2021 at 04:39 pm
Apparently I'm one of the few people who still writes letters and sends cards through snail mail. I have a couple of older friends who I know enjoy it, and although the majority of the people I know have email or Facebook, I still will sit down and write a letter or send a card.
As I look at some genealogy stuff, I think, we will have a generation of people who will not have those letters or cards to leave behind. My great aunt and her husband would write letters to each other since he traveled a lot. Some were sweet and tender. Others were desperate -- one had him writing he hadn't heard from her and he was upset and sorry if he had done something to upset her. I never met him, but I feel like I've gotten to know him through some of the letters he wrote.
During the Pandemic, and even now, I am still writing and sending cards. I am almost embarrassed to admit this, but I sent a fan letter to a British actor I like just to say I enjoyed his work. I'm 60 years old and I wondered if I was acting like a teenager. But maybe he just needed to receive a handwritten note. At least that is my hope.
I have a friend who is fighting cancer. I've mailed cards and packages to her in hopes of keeping her spirits up. She responds through email to thank me and that is sweet, knowing how she is struggling.
A few years ago the local sports director of the local station made a comment about taking up knitting. I challenged him to come to our group at church and he did and did a sweet story. We became friends. The funny thing is I don't care for sports, but I cared for him. Every so often I would send him a note or letter and sometimes I would hear from him and sometimes I wouldn't. I didn't care. I just felt the need to write him. He left last fall to go somewhere else and he said that he may not have always told me, but those notes or cards always came at a time when he needed them most. I was truly touched.
Hopefully you have someone in your life touching you in a way whether it is a note, card, email, phone call, or conversation.
May 9th, 2021 at 06:55 pm
Does anticipation really make things more special?
Based on our experience this past week, I'd say a resounding "Yes!"
A year ago we had planned on going to Laurel, Mississippi, to visit the town of Ben and Erin Napier of the HGTV show, "Home Town." We had been saving money to make the trip and then last spring the plague of Covid got in the way. So, watching reruns, talking about what could have been, and hoping that this year might be the year...
Well, it was. We drove over 700 miles over 2 days to get there. Since we had an extra year to save, we decided we were not going to scrimp. We stayed in nice hotels for the whole trip. If we wanted something, we bought it. Since we were driving, we took more stuff than we needed so we were comfortable.
We had a delightful time visiting Laurel, Mississippi, where Erin and Ben Napier showcase the homes they remodel on HGTV’s “Home Town.” What drew us here were the locally owned shops and restaurants and the fact Erin and Ben strive to support local craftsmen or offer things made in the USA. We felt we were “framily” when we first entered Laurel. As we stood on the sidewalk Tuesday morning waiting for a shop to open, Jim Raspberry, Erin’s cousin, stopped and talked to us, telling us it was worth the wait and welcomed us and a few minutes later a lady got out of her car, crossed the street, stopped directly in front of us, asked us if we were visitors and when I said “Yes,” she said welcome to Laurel and introduced herself as Erin’s mama. We talked for a few minutes like we were friends. We also saw “Miss Pearl” of Pearl’s diner talking on the phone outside her restaurant and we saw Mallorie walking down the street and then Jim and Mallorie walking back. The owner of one shop visited with us for quite awhile while he and I discussed John Grisham’s “Painted House.” I did not take photos of these “celebs” because I did not want to violate their privacy. But, it was a wonderful visit, even if the heat and humidity were both high.
I've concluded that I'm either a John Grisham groupie, or his books have flavored my life to the extent that I see things possibly the way he would have written them. When we were eating at Pearl's Diner in Laurel, MS, the place filled up and three ladies had to either take the table for 6 or stand. They sat at one end of the table and in comes three gentlemen and they ask if three local men can join them. They just reminded me of what I would imagine characters in Grisham's books. One had a three piece suit on, gold watch chain, and salt and pepper neatly trimmed beard and hair, and was ever the gentleman. Another had dress slacks, white shirt with the sleeves rolled up, and tie, while the third had on dress slacks, dress shirt, and suspenders. All three engaged the ladies in talk, asking questions such as where they hail from, and what they liked about Laurel, all the time enchanting them with their southern drawl.
DH and I bought Erin and Ben's book. I started it that night and finished it a couple of days ago. DH started it yesterday and is almost finished with it. It is a heart warming tale of two people who love each other and their families and their home town. It just gave me a good feeling that there are still good people out there and the world although has been turned around with Covid and ill feelings, it still is a wonderful place. I needed this trip more than I could ever imagine just to see something different and be embraced by a very warm, welcoming town. My goal is to be friendlier to strangers and perhaps they will leave our city a littler happier as well.
To answer my own question as the beginning of the blog, does anticipation make something more special? In this case, it did, it sweetened my life like a glass of sweet tea.
April 28th, 2021 at 09:20 pm
I am finding it difficult to believe that April is almost over. I'm not really sure what has happened with this month or even the "new" year so far, but boy, time is just flying by. Perhaps it is my age that makes it seem like this.
I've been staying busy doing things around here. I thought I was so clever today -- I planned to vacuum, dry mop, then wet mop the hardwood and vinyl and vaccum the two rooms with carpeting, and why not kill two birds with one stone and put one of those charcoal masks on my face. Well, all that labor made me perspire so now I'm trying to cool off so the mask will harden so I can peel it off. I guess the term "Epic Fail" would ring true. Oh, well. The charcoal mask was a freebie that came with something else I bought.
DH planted green onions and they didn't pop up last week due to cold temps and snow, but are really peeping out now which is good. We usually do two or three plantings through the growing season.
We donated some things to a local thrift store. It used to be you could donate 6 days a week, but due to Covid, they only have 3 days and two different times in order to donate. But, it was nice getting rid of some things. Hopefully they will be good sellers and bring in money for our charity that runs the thrift store.
My church is hoping to have a rummage sale in June. Normally they have a luncheon and offered baked goods, but cannot this year for obvious reasons. I certainly hope we do make some money to give to the charities our Ladies' Guild wants to sponsor. Last fall, since we couldn't bake cookies for our cookie walk, and baked goods to sell, we were asked to donate what we would have spent on the ingredients so our Ladies Guild at least had some money to donate to a couple of charities because as I understand it, many of them were feeling the pinch of not getting enough donations. I am doing the PR for the sale so hopefully we will gets quite a few customers.
Well, that's basically my life in a nutshell. Hope yours is going well!
April 7th, 2021 at 08:56 pm
Yesterday was a very spendy day for me. A couple of years ago when I renewed my driver's license, it was just the same way as always. A couple of months later, the state decided to institute the "real id" and it was to be done by October 2020 if you wanted to fly and didn't have a passport. Well, Covid struck, DMVs were shuttered, and so we waited for things to open up. Last fall, the DMVs opened up, and DH had to renew his license, and so we got the documents together and he got the real id. I was waiting for things to calm down since there was so much catch up, but then our governor shut down the state again and so I waited. Yesterday I decided it was time. I had a free afternoon. Darn good thing, because it took the whole dang afternoon.
I had read online what I needed and I headed to the county clerk's office to get a certified birth certificate. Cha ching...$23. So, went to the DMV to stand outside for over an hour and then 20 minutes inside before I was getting to see a clerk. I laid out all my paperwork only to be told that I needed a certified marriage license. So back to the county clerk's office and another $23 plus parking. Then back to the DMV to wait in line again. I guess I sort of understand why we need all this stuff, but to be honest, $46 for two pieces of paper to prove I am who I say I am, and it kind of makes me wonder if someone is getting a kick back or something. Oh, well. That's done and I await my new license coming in the mail.
We had a quiet Easter. We did attend Easter service and DH told me what he wanted for Easter dinner. We were fortunate to find a very small ham, and I mean very small. That being said, it still made for 4 meals, the last was today. DH likes ham a whole lot more than I do. It is OK, but I think from years before my gall bladder surgery of ham and pork making me sick, it kind of reminds me of that. Anyway, we finished up the last of the Easter leftovers today. We did our grocery shopping this morning and other than the normal stuff we buy each week like eggs, dairy, bread, and fruit, we did not need much. That is always good.
I continue to work on making scarves for our church's knitting group. I am about out of yarn and will need to get some. I have some leftover pieces of skeins that I plan to use to crochet dish cloths. Last year we donated over 200 dish cloths for Christmas baskets for a food pantry.
For my last birthday, a friend was generous to make us breakfast. That was better than any other gift I could think of because I certainly don't need anymore "things." So, I have a friend who is having a birthday tomorrow and I'm baking him a cake. He is helping take care of his mother so I doubt if anyone will think of a cake. I already checked with him and he said that would be great.
March 29th, 2021 at 09:39 pm
Last fall I canned. A lot it seems, at least for us. The challenge was to find storage for all the jars of this and that and to be honest, we had some of it sitting on open shelves. I figured we weren't going to entertain so who cares if they are out.
Well, we've used a lot of the stuff I've canned and now I have empty jars. Fortunately I can store them somewhere besides the inside of the house.
We've bought other things with glass jars and my husband is always kidding me because I save them all. Well, you never know for what you are going to use them. We like honey and I have some smaller jars that are probably around a pint. Not a canning jar, but a jar. Well, I wanted to share some orange marmalade with some friends and they were perfect. I warned them due to the canning lid shortage I was giving them jars of the marmalade that had to be put in the fridge. But I sure prefer glass jars to plastic ones.
I figure this is a good way to reuse something over and over. And to be honest, I just like jars. Guess I'm weird.
March 24th, 2021 at 08:23 pm
A few weeks ago I happened upon 3 books at a thrift store for 50 cents each: "The Tightwad Gazette," and the next two volumes. So, for the sum of $1.50 and tax, I had all three books. Normally I get books from the library, but our library has been getting rid of older books (I'm not happy about it either), so they do not have these books.
I just finished reading them. Yes, I realize they were set in the 1990s, but some things still ring true. I honestly think a lot of the things we discuss here on SA would make Amy proud.
One thing she mentioned was although when things were no longer tight as far as money, she continued being frugal because it was so ingrained in her lifestyle. I think for most of us, we would say the same.
Now that I have finished them, I plan to donate them to a thrift store and hope someone else can get some good from them. I think for less than $2, I derived a lot of pleasure of learning some new things and having some things validated.
March 23rd, 2021 at 08:41 pm
DH and I spent a big share of Saturday and Sunday working in the yard.
Let me make myself perfectly clear, I am not a yard person. I get sunburned easily, have allergies, and basically am not a happy camper. Yes, I wear a floppy hat and long sleeves.
Anyway, we did get quite a bit done. When we moved into this house almost 23 years ago, the front had these ugly bushes with white rock around them. DH wanted to plant flowers, but rocks are not condusive to growing plants. We hired a friend to add garden timbers in front of this so he could plant some flowers. My friend was the kind of guy who always did everything exactly right. There were some garden timbers around the other side of the yard. Well, 23 plus years have taken a toll on the wood. We decided to pull the timbers and get rid of them. DH sawed them into small pieces to dispose of them. Except I think my friend must have buried the posts halfway to China because I couldn't find the bottom of them. Of course digging around plants makes it dicey to find the bottom. We decided to leave them. We had some limestone pieces we moved and that meant digging up the bottom pieces since it had sunk into the dirt. And those puppies were heavy pieces to begin with.
Well, two afternoons and we got them moved. We figure we saved about $1000 not hiring someone to do all this. It's not perfect, but works.
We wanted to get it done before planting season because instead of flowers, DH has planted herbs in that area. Our Oregano comes up each year, but he plants others on each side. He had to trim the Oregano since it was starting to creep into the yard since the former rotten timbers no longer provided a barrier.
We did wind up spending about $26 on bags of top soil becasue we had to fill in the areas where the bottom layer of limestone pieces were that we dug up.
If nothing else, not having rotten timbers decaying does make the area look better.
Last year my yard work was helping DH with the "dwarf" burning bushes that were over 12 feet tall. Sure glad he didn't buy regular size burning bushes years ago! LOL They had gotten away from him, so we spent days and days trimming and cleaning up the stuff. Other than our sweat and sore muscles, it didn't cost us anything.
Just for the record, though, I'm not a good weekend warrior. I was ready for bed at 6 p.m. each night. LOL
March 8th, 2021 at 08:54 pm
Yesterday was frustrating. I read many of the blogs, but the site would not allow me to comment, told me try later, only after going through what seemed like a zillion of those recaptcha images. Egad.
The weekend wasn't an adventurous one by any means. Basically stayed around home. DH is a clothes horse. I noticed he has been wearing the same few pairs of slacks over and over and I know he has quite a stack. Well, he said he didn't want to disturb the pile by getting them down off the shelf. But, he has two shelves in his closet and he's tall enough he could be putting stuff on the top shelf. So, I suggested we go through his slacks and then put some on the top shelf. He tried on every pair. He found some don't fit or he doesn't like the way they fit. I will wash them and we will donate them. He had a bunch of balled up shirts he uses for his yard work, so I washed them all and folded them. His closet looked so much nicer and he can now wear other slacks because he can get to them. Of course that made me look at my closet. I went through it and pulled some things to wash so I can donate them too. I threw away three blouses because I had been using them to work around the house and they were just plain nasty. I think straightening the closet always makes me feel like I accomplished something.
We had our first small salad with our Aerogarden lettuce on Friday. I teased my husband it couldn't get mush fresher -- I picked it, washed it, dried, and tore it in smaller pieces for the salad and we ate it.
I have been working on a small quilt project. A few months ago I bought a quilt top that had to be hand embroidered. I finished that and have been working on hand quilting it. I have not quilted before so it was a learning experience. It is a throw, so it isn't huge. I finished it and even with the mistakes, I'm a little proud of it. But, I'm glad it is finished because I want to go back to making hats and scarves for the knitting group at church.
February 28th, 2021 at 08:52 pm
It rained over night and we needed it. Our lake is low so this precipitation is a good thing and I'm a happy person it isn't snow or ice. We had warmer temps this past week -- in the 50s -- so I think people are getting spring fever.
We had to have the plumber out and am awaiting that bill, but we have the money to pay. Other than that, just keeping up with the day to day expenses. My credit card bill was lower this past month and I think part of it is because we haven't spent as much on groceries. I have been trying to use a lot of what we have and making things stretch. Tonight is the third seating of the huge pot of vegetable soup. It started out with a beef roast and potatoes and carrots for the first meal, then after we had that, I used the leftover beef, broth, carrots, and potatoes as a starter for vegetable soup. What we have left from tonight will go in the freezer. The roast was kind of expensive, but if we get five meals from it, I think we did pretty well and it is far cheaper than eating out. Maybe even far healthier.
I have been trying to learn to quilt. I started this project a few months ago. It is a throw and you embroider the top, then quilt the thing. Although I have enjoyed it, it's been long enough that I'm sort of getting tired of working on it. Because of the close work, it tires my eyes and makes my fingers sore. I will be glad when and if it gets finished. I hate to not finish it and go on to something else because I don't want it sitting around taunting me.
I keep checking online to see if there are canning lids in our local stores. I think I have enough for our own perosnal canning, but I normally give things away too, and if I don't have the extra lids, I don't think that is going to happen. Right now some of the stores have the cases of jars with rings and lids, but honestly, I do not want to buy more jars. I have plenty as it is.
My church is doing this Red Letter Challenge. It is a workbook that has something for the 40 days of Lent and challenges. The Red Letter is about the red lettering of Jesus' words in the Bible. One of our projects (I skipped ahead) is to collect items for our local women's shelter. There are two places that house women and children who are either homeless or need to find a short term place to stay due to domestic abuse. One of the items requesteed was underwear. When I heard that, I thought, why didn't I think of that? Who would want to get used underwear, even if it has been washed? So, I'm trying to search out places to find reasonably priced underwear that we can buy that will be easy to take care of and sturdy.
Last summer we found an Aerogarden at a local thrift store. It had one box of 3 pods with it unopened. It was for herbs. After our garden herbs froze, I decided to start these. Well, I guess the seeds must have been too old. Nothing happened. So, I used some leftover lettuce seeds and they went to town! I purchased three more pods to put with it, and if they grow as much as the original ones, we should be doing well for lettuce for some small salads. I'm kind of excited because that was the real reason I wanted the Aerogarden in the first place. So, all in, not counting the leftover lettuce seeds, I have less than $30 invested. I looked online and the same one lists for over $100 new.
As you can see, this is one of those posts that has a lot of this and that.
February 14th, 2021 at 10:31 pm
It's darn cold. And then another four letter word is also in our forecast: snow; they issued a winter storm warning for 6-10 inches. I'm not a winter person, especially when it is this cold and then snow on top of it. Just hoping everyone stays safe. I'm scheduled to give blood tomorrow and I can predict if we get more than a few inches of snow, I will not be going. I know they need blood, but our road crews have not been good about keeping the roads cleared and I don't want to get stuck out somewhere on the way. Extreme cold and extreme heat bother my asthma.
I may have mentioned that DH and I really like British mysteries. Awhile back we subscribed to the streaming service Acorn TV and have really enjoyed quite a few of their programs. I was looking the other day and I found one that wasn't a mystery, but look intriquing. It is called "Wartime Farm." It is a documentary by two British archeologists and one historian who live for a year as if they were running a farm during WWII near Southampton. My parents grew up during the Great Depression in the United States and of course told me about the war shortages and ration books here; well, after watching some of these episodes, the U.S. had it made compared to the English. The English before the war were having to import 2/3 of their food so when the war came and food supply chains were cut off, the English farmers were told to step up and grow more. Many had to get rid of their pigs and beef cattle because you could feed more people with plants than animals. The government stepped in and basically told the farmers what to plant and how much and if the farmers didn't meet the strict standards, they could lose all or part of their farm. I could go on and on, but it has been fascinating. I have one more left in the series, and I can honestly say I have really enjoyed it. I learned a lot. If you don't have Acorn TV, you can also find these on YouTube. There's also a book I guess. My library doesn't have it so I won't be getting to read it, but just an FYI.
The interesting thing is I went to the library and checked out a murder mystery, British of course, and as I was reading, they mentioned "Lumberjills" which were women who cut trees in England since many of the men were off fighting the war. I had just seen an episode of "Wartime Farm" and it talked about the Lumberjills.
One thing I really am enjoying is the creativity people had to use to make use of things that were originally cast off. I think our world would be a better place if we recycled and reused more things. DH laughs at me because I'm always saving glass jars for this and that, but although I can recycle them, I really like having them around. I know I'm probably nuts, but I always thought soft drinks taste better in a cold, glass bottle, and I think milk does too.
It's Valentine's Day and hopefully you have been greeted and remembered. DH and I exchange cards. I'm fixing a pasta dish and baked garlic bread to go with it for our Valentine's Day dinner. The beauty is these will probably make an encore performance later this week in some form.
If you are in the path of bad weather, hope you are safe, warm, and cherished.
February 8th, 2021 at 12:28 am
Not a whole lot of new stuff to report. Been doing the cooking/cleaning/crafting circuit mostly.
I am spending more and more time in the kitchen it seems because for some reason, we eat. OK, kidding aside. In order to keep things moving along, I am challenging myself to try and do different things. For example, yesterday I made orange marmalade. I had some extra oranges and two extra lemons and a box of pectin and some sugar, so why not? I was pleased with the results. I'm trying to make things that are healthy too. DH loves to snack after supper so I made an apple crumble so the topping was made with oatmeal. Not low calorie, but he doesn't need to watch his waistline and he would eat something sweet anyway, so figured I was helping him eat a little healthier. I made rye biscuits yesterday just to see how they would turn out. We had some with the beef stew I made yesterday and heated up for tonight's supper.
You wouldn't think with just the two of us I would need to clean as often, but it seems we tend to track in way too much stuff. Plus I'm kind of partial to clean clothes and sheets and towels.
As far as crafting I have a big project, well for me a big one started. I bought one of those embroidery kits for a throw that after you embroider, you then quilt. I finished the embroidery part, now I am doing the quilting part. It is a bit pricey, but I am learning something different so I figure it might be worth it. I can only do it so long before my eyes get tired. I loom knit and crochet some too. I have six scarves made for my church group. I'm trying to use up yarn I have and yarn the church has so I don't go out and buy stuff.
I paid some bills today and was pleased we have a bit of a surplus as far as cash. Sometimes I worry that I've forgotten to pay something, but I look back and see we are where we should be. Maybe because we aren't going out and doing a whole lot it is saving us money.
January 24th, 2021 at 07:26 pm
Illinois is one of the states that participates in the MegaMillions Lottery tickets. Sad to say, we didn't win. Of course, we didn't play either. I guess some lucky winner in Michigan will be the next millionaire. DH turned to me last night when they announced where the winning ticket was sold and said he bet that even if we won a jackpot like that, I would still shop at Aldi and clip coupons, and reuse bread bags. You know, he's right! He said being frugal is ingrained me and I don't doubt it.
This week was spent doing things that are in effect, taking care of things. I have a few pairs of shoes that were expensive and are leather. I spent some time using some shoe cream on them and polishing them. One is a pair of ankle boots that I cannot even remember how old they are. They don't look perfect, but the fact that they look as good as they do I chalk up to using this shoe cream/polish on them. I know when I went in a year or so ago with a pair of leather shoes, the salesman recognized them as being quite a bit older and asked if I wore them a lot. I said yes, but I try to take care of them. He said that was the key.
Twice a year I use a cleaner and polish on my wooden kitchen cabinets. They are 16 years old which probably isn't really old, but my kitchen gets a work out with all the cooking, baking, and canning I do.
I have a couple of pots that belonged to my grandmother. I don't know when she got them, but I know they are at least over 60 years old. I wash them by hand. I try not to let them get scratched or burn stuff in them. It's amazing how quality stuff lasts when you take care of it. I have a Pyrex dish that also was my grandmother's. It still looks pretty nice. I have a set of wooden handled steak knives that are over 30 years old. They still look great because we hand wash them and I treat the handles with a special oil so they don't dry out. I'm going to say that taking care of stuff also saves money because I don't have to buy a lot of new stuff when the older stuff keeps going.
These are just a few examples of good maintenance. Do you have something you've taken care of that still looks and works great?
January 17th, 2021 at 06:58 pm
I haven't been eating from the pantry like many here on SA, but I have been making meals stretch. We stopped at Aldi on our way home the other day (not our normal shopping day) and bought a whole chicken so I could put it in the Crockpot. We have gotten 4 meals from it. The first night I just served some of the chicken and put cous cous, green beans, homemade bread, cottage cheese, and a fruit salad as sides. We had chicken salad one day for lunch. Then I used some of the broth as well as the chicken to make a decent pot of chicken and noodles. One time for a supper and one will be a lunch. I still have some broth leftover which I put in the freezer. I figured that was a good use of that chicken!
I had found a pan that you make 6 small Bundt cakes at a thrift store. I washed it up and found a recipe on Pinterest. They turned out pretty well. DH has enjoyed them, and I gave two to a friend at church for her birthday since I figured she shouldn't have to make her own birthday treat and gave two to another friend as a way to support her since her sister is being in Hospice. I know the cakes aren't a solution, but just wanted her to know she is being thought of. I had everything I needed for these cakes in the fridge and pantry so no grocery shopping needed.
Since we have been eating at home so much due to no indoor dining, I have tried to make different things and stretch our food budget as much as possible. I canned as much as I could this summer and fall and as glad as I am to have these items, I'm seeing so much of it dwindling. I guess that is good; it isn't going to waste, but then being the worry wart that I am, I hope I don't run out of stuff before the next gardening season. One good thing about DH is he never says no when I have purchased something for the kitchen. Our kitchen isn't huge by any means, but it is far larger than the one in the house we bought when we first married. Some of the items like pans I have to hand wash and he's been good about helping me dry dishes and pans. He has discovered that I have stacked and nested things a certain way to make sure things fit in the cabinets. He's learning my system which is a good thing.
For Christmas I gave away a lot of the jams and jellies I made over the summer and fall. I also made fudge and cookies to give away. I have a single friend who doesn't like to cook, so every so often, I make extra as far as our meal and take it over so she has a hot meal. She eats some of those frozen dinners and sometimes she just eats cereal. I would invite her over, but with the Pandemic, need I say more? I wear a mask when I do the drop off.
I pulled some vegetable soup I made a couple of weeks ago from the freezer. We had two meals off of it before I froze the remainder. It will be our supper tonight. I baked herb biscuits while the bundt cakes were baking; figured if I was going to have the oven on, might as well make it work for me. DH was pleased because he likes lots of rolls, biscuits, and breads. Fortunately he has the metabolism that he can eat these and not gain weight.
Well, that basically sums up my frolics in the kitchen the last few days. I guess it is good that I like to cook and bake. Hopefully my friends agree.