Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Meet Willie

I've stayed away from the blog for about a week because I noticed I was getting hundreds of reads a day.  That was a red flag to me because the norm is no more than 160.  When I checked to see what country the hits were coming from I saw Russia was the number one country.   Even over the USA.  Trouble!  Lots of hackers from that country.  So I changed my password and checked on the numbers often.  I'm down to my normal numbers now.

I'd like to introduce you to Willie.  He's a beagle - hound mix and is about six years old.  We have the same energy level so I'm hoping our relationship blooms.  He slept in the laundry room last night because he needs a bath and lots of brushing.  The brushing has been done twice since I brought him home with me from a rescue yesterday afternoon and the bath will happen this morning. He will need to loose a few pounds though.  He's a bit over weight.

Willie's laying in the garage at this
time.  He seems to like the cool cement floor.

He held his bladder better than I did last night and was so excited to go out this morning that he actually did lots of moving around.  He now sleeps with little snores escaping now and again.

This week has been moving along fast.  I can remember what I did somewhat.  I know I de cluttered the kitchen cupboards, finding 11 items I don't use. Cleaned the refrigerator, also.  I also went to the Farm Market to pick up some local peaches and tomatoes.  They are gold.  The sweet taste of a local tomato is heavenly.   And, the peaches have juice that drip down the arm.

I have enough pickles to make two more jars with more coming.  The heat has been in the 100s so I shaded my plants with the market umbrella which they seem to love.  Many more cucumber flowers have appeared and the bees are working extra hard to pollinate them.

The floors are cleaned with only the bathrooms to be cleaned from floor to ceiling.  I'll clean those after I buy dog food for Willie this morning.

The refrigerator pickles are ready this morning so I tested them.  They came out yummy.  Success is so rewarding.

I have been watching videos on yoo toob about food pantries in the USA and England.  What I came away with is that all pantries are different.  A few try to focus in on healthy foods, but most are interested in filling bellies.  Some can be visited only once a month and give only three  days of food per person.  Others try to provide a month's worth of food per person.  All fall short of the need to nourish well and keep bellies full for the day.  Food pantries are on my heart and if I do donate to an organization, it is a food pantry.  Most of my tithing goes to individuals who are unaware of where the gift comes from.

That's about all I can remember since I forgot to write things down this week.  I wish all my readers a content and peaceful life.  Stay safe.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

This Week's Accomplishments - and a Bit More

My trip to New York was a gleeful experience for a grandmother.  I saw and interacted with all of my family.  My daughter took me to grab real Italian foods at the bread bakery and sweets bakery.  We also went to a local hot spot on Lake Ontario which is fondly referred to as  'The Loop'.  On the way home we stopped at a  Lindt outlet and I found some Italian chocolates.

The Lindt factory in Pennsylvania.

The grandkids being watched by CH while they
skip stones in Lake Ontario at the Loop.

We ate outside with the sea gulls.
One actually stole some French fries!

I should have gotten more of the
Italian chocolates.  Bits of hazelnuts
scattered in the creamy milk

The end of the trip I had to rest for six days, but it was worth it.  Once rested I accomplished a few things at home.

The garden produced enough pickles for me to make four jars of refrigerator pickles as well as a quart of blackberries which are in the freezer.  (One more quart and I can make jelly.)

The traveling clothes got washed and put away as soon as I got home.

Two cupboards were cleaned out and better organized.

The pantry was re organized, as well.

I made a tomato salad which was devoured with a piece of the Italian bread for lunch yesterday.

I broke down and bought a can of stainless steel cleaner for the refrigerator because nothing seemed to polish it up that I tried.  The doors now look lovely.

Since I spend 90% of my time at home, I wanted to make small changes to the environment.  I have a couple planned, but began by purchasing a small lamp for the living room at Ross.  The lamp that was replaced will go into the guest room for more lighting.  I'll be looking for a couple of pictures for the dining room and living room to bring in change in the future.

Carolyn and I also went to Office Max.  Pencil sharpeners were one cent each with a limit of three.  I bought three.  I also bought a few girly things for the office that I still needed.  File folders come to mind as well as a pouch for pens and pencils.

The soap dispenser in the powder room was empty so I made more soap for there with castile soap, essential oil, and olive oil.

  • I do have to put away my luggage today as well as balance the checkbook and pay two utility bills.  The floors also need to be cleaned because I haven't cleaned them since I came home on Sunday.  With these things done, I should be caught up on my work.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Italian Tomato Salad, Cheap Recipes

Italian Tomato Salad
1 large tomato (or more if you'd like)
1/2 medium onion
Salt, pepper to taste
Very large pinch of oregano  
Vinegar (I use red wine)
Slice tomato and place on a flat dish. (I use a dinner plate)  Slices can be as thick or thin as you like.  Thinly slice onion and spread slices among the tomato.  Top with salt, pepper, oregano, oil and vinegar.  When combining oil and vinegar a good proportion to follow is half as much vinegar as oil.  Let sit on the counter for an hour, then turn slices upside down.  Another hour on the counter and you're ready to feast.
 Feeds four.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

A Different Kind of Post This Morning

Thirty seven years ago my sister in law sent me a birthday card.  I remember that card in full detail because it had a prayer on it written by Helen Steiner Rice.  I memorized the prayer and have said it every morning since.  It goes like this:

Good morning, Lord
You are ushering in another day
Untouched and freshly new.
And here I come to ask you. Lord, if
You'd renew me, too.
Forgive the many errors that I made yesterday,
And take my hand and hold it tight,
For I can't walk alone.

This little prayer served me as a quick reminder of my need to depend on Him as small children called out my name early in the morning from a crib.  Or a disagreement rose up from two toddlers well before the sun could cast a shadow on the gardens.

Today this prayer has a renewed meaning for me that spans society and the globe.  I can picture the feelings of confusion, instability, and fear dissipating throughout the civilized world if this prayer were said each morning by every person, whether they believed in it's words or not.  What harm would it do?  There would be no ill effects from the practice, but there would be so many blessings from these few spoken words.

I'm not a very political person and quite frankly don't understand politics that well.  What I do see is the social battles we are experiencing are not battles between men, but rather battles between powers and principalities, unseen to us.  The atmosphere of confusion is being used to provoke people to carry out actions that they normally wouldn't commit.

My request this morning is that my dear readers think about this post.  Reflect on it and see if this is something you'd like to participate in.  I'll make a promise.  Every little prayer reaches heaven.  We can make a difference.

Stay safe.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Rice A Roonie, Cheap Recipes

I'm back from vacation visiting family up North.  But, before I blog about the trip I want to put up this recipe that has been requested by a yoo toober I faithfully watch.  She is a young mom with two beautiful little ones who decided (with her husband) that they wanted to be debt free and serve their family healthy foods.  She's looking for a rice a 'roonie' mix that she can make herself without all of the additives.  I know I printed this before, but I can't find it, so I'm putting it under the 'cheap recipe' category.  If you want to take a look at her channel it's 'The Kneady Homemaker' on yoo toob./

Rice Mix
3 cups uncooked rice
2 cups rice and 1 cup broken (into small pieces) spaghetti (I use this method)
1/4 cup dried parsley
 5-6 tablespoons beef or chicken bouillon ( I use chicken with 5 T)
2 teaspoons onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Mix well and store in an air tight container.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

A Break

I'll not be able to blog for about a week.  I may have a bunch of pictures when I come back!  Stay safe.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

A Happy Heart, A Sad Heart

I received an email from a lady I've been corresponding with in Germany.  A lovely lady who shares my interest in good food.  Her garden is to die for - it's beautiful and full of fruits and veggies.

She recently sent me a picture of jams she made that made my heart leap with joy.  I/m so thankful that all the fruits of the earth are being utilized in her home.  I get excited whenever I see families grabbing the good food train.  Let me put a disclaimer here.  There are a few items that aren't the best for me that I like such as licorice and chocolate milk.  So I'm not preaching here.  I'm only writing what's in my heart.

Which brings me to a video I watched this morning that made me a bit sad.  The woman is filled with energy and has a lovely well cared for home.  There's a Fourth of July party planned so she videoed the items she bought  to 'make' food as her contribution.  Displayed on the table were all prepackaged items,  The cookies were oven ready.  The salad dressing came in a bottle with ingredients that can't be pronounced, and the cheese was pre=grated with 'natural' cellulous (wood shavings) in it.  I was crying inside for the choices on display.  Not judgmental or angry or holier than thou, just sad.

This blog has a steady readership of between 500 and 700 reads a week.  You all know I'm not interested in big numbers, only that I can share the knowledge I've accumulated over the six plus decades I've walked the earth.  I feel confident in assuming that my readers want to gather foundational knowledge to live a better and more frugal life.  If you'll indulge me a moment I would plead with you to think more carefully about what fuel you put in your body on a regular basis.  Where does it come from and how was it grown.  What ingredients are in the packaged foods you put on the table.  (Manufacturers in this country are getting the hint and are removing chemical additives in some of our packaged foods.)  Please help make my heart leap with joy!

Then have a piece of chocolate on me.

Stay safe.