Monday, October 18, 2010
Monday, October 11, 2010
Recently I have finished two books. The first is Baby Not On Board, which is all about being childless. It was more humorous and sarcastic than anything. It was a fun, quick read. It is currently packaged up waiting to be mailed tomorrow.
Next is The Boy Who Loved Tornadoes about a mother's struggle to find appropriate care for her mentally disabled son. I was not sure I could relate to the book, but it is a touching story. I thoroughly enjoyed the book.
While this should free up two books' worth of space on my shelves, it does not really. I am waiting for two more books that I requested to arrive. I am on a reading merry-go-round, and I do not want to get off.
Monday, June 14, 2010
Monday, June 7, 2010
You will need:
14 ounce can coconut milk
Zest of 1 lime
Juice of 2 limes
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup shredded coconut
I put everything in the blender until it was mixed well. I have a set of popsicle molds and ended up with eight popsicles. Dh did not like them as he is not a fan of lime. I thought they were delicious - a bit tart from the lime and slightly sweet. I plan to purchase another can of coconut milk with this recipe in mind.
Friday, June 4, 2010
This week I have been cleaning the desk and our storage building. My decluttering has motivated dh. He wants to tear down two-thirds of our backyard storage building. That means we need to get rid of some stuff. I have no problem with that. If we are not using and have no plans to use something I see no reason to hold onto it.
I have found that cutting back on the amount of things we have also cuts back on the amount of time I spend cleaning. I admit that I have never made it completely through the Holiday Grand Plan. This just might be my year!
Thursday, June 3, 2010
Strawberries were our first blessing. I got about six gallons from my aunt and uncle's strawberry patch. Some went into a yummy strawberry pie. I froze some whole to be part of homegrown frozen mixed berries. I made dh some strawberry popsicles. Others went into the freezer for jam or ice cream. One gallon went to my in-laws.
My in-laws gave us some yellow squash. We also picked their garden last week and received more yellow squash, zucchini, and cucumbers. I shared some as we had more than we could eat. Everything has been eaten fresh. I do plan to blanch some of the squash and zucchini as part of a homemade frozen stir fry mix.
Snap beans from another friend's garden were enjoyed fresh. Some will also be put into the stir fry mix.
Blackberries from my parents' garden will complete the frozen mixed berries. We have also been enjoying onions and potatoes from the family garden.
The garden produce definitely helps my current grocery budget. I also try to freeze what I can to help the garden budget in the months when the garden is finished.
Wednesday, June 2, 2010
I do not stick strictly to the menu plan. For example if I have a meal planned for June 27 and we want it, we eat it even though it is June 12. My monthly menu plan is a general list of meals so I am not peering into the freezer searching for something I can fix.
The second part of my plan is to save my menus in my household notebook. In June 2011 I can pull out this menu plan and with a few tweaks have a working menu. I have decluttered my recipes and also have a folder of ones I want to try. Perhaps I will have meals we do not love as much or new meals that I want to add in. A year is a long time to wait to see how it works. I expect it will be fine or at least give me a good start.
I do know that the monthly shopping works as I did this when I worked. The less I am Wal-Mart, the less I am tempted to pick up this or that.
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
My DH got to work building a very nice pen for them with a little roost and plenty of room to ramble in the grass. I named them Fred and Daphne (from Scooby Doo). They stay very close to each other. Daphne has already laid several eggs, which we are saving to hatch out.
Our intentions were to get chickens at some point anyway so when no one wanted these it seemed like a great opportunity. We will add to our little chicken family with a few more breeds in the future. I grew up around chickens, but it is fun to have some of my own.
Monday, May 31, 2010
I am pleased to say that I have posts lined up for the next week. I apologize for my absence and hope the computer will cooperate from here on out.
Monday, May 10, 2010
Friday, May 7, 2010
Thursday, May 6, 2010
Yesterday we had pizza and salad for lunch and burritos and salsa/guacamole for dinner. It was not the most balanced, but I was away much of the day.
Today we are having broiled cod fillets, a pasta side, and either salad or slaw for lunch. Our evening meal will be corn dogs and home baked fries with fruit for dessert.
Friday: hamburgers on homemade buns, chips
Saturday: chicken wings, green beans, potato salad
Sunday: BBQ sandwiches on homemade buns
Monday: pizza and salad
Tuesday: sausage and tomatoes in pasta, biscuits
One day this week I want to try out an apple tart recipe. I am only keeping recipes that I seriously plan to test. This is one DH had selected so it is a definite test recipe. I already have the apples so I can try the tart without purchasing any other ingredients.
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Monday, May 3, 2010
I am not going to pretend that I will get rid of all of my cookbooks. If I can clear out five books along with 75% of the "one day I might cook that" recipes, I will consider that area of spring cleaning a success.
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
The first option is for cinnamon rolls served the day after making. I make the dough, shape it, and place it without letting it rise in the refrigerator. The next morning remove the cinnamon rolls from the refrigerator and let them rest on the counter 15-20 minutes. Bake as usual.
The second option is for freezing the dough. I make the dough, shape it, and let it rise. Then I wrap the pan well and place it in the freezer. The day before baking, let the cinnamon roll dough rise overnight in the refrigerator. Remove from the refrigerator and let rest on the counter 15-20 minutes before baking as usual.
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Although it is not visible from the picture, the flower has a 3-d effect. I stamped the image three times and cut out parts from two of the images. I used pop dots to layer the flower parts giving the image a bit of depth. I am thinking I might actually be able to make my Christmas cards for this year and not have them look like a three year old made them.
Monday, April 26, 2010
I have no good explanation for this mess. It started small as all messes do. This part of the house is cold so once winter was in full swing I could not not convince myself to bundle up enough to get back there. We were just opening the door and tossing things inside. Finally enough was enough, and it was time to clean up. It took a few long days to get it all in order, but I am thrilled with the results.
Everything is neat and organized. I can easily put up any items I purchase, and I can quickly find any items that I need. I think the before pictures will be motivation to keep it in the after condition.
Monday, April 19, 2010
I have donated three and half boxes of books to a neighborhood bookshelf. Two grocery bags of books went to the local gospel radio station for its prison ministry. A box of craft supplies was given to my church along with my Swiffer WetJet. I have a box of yard sale items to give to my cousin for her sale. I am trying to be a bit ruthless in my decluttering. We simply have too much stuff in our house.
I am motivated by the progress I have made. Next week I am going to work on the pantry. It is even worse than the craft room. I may get brave and take some before pictures of the pantry to share. It needs organizing, and I am sure I will have to toss a few expired items that have been buried in the mess.
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
Some of my favorite stamps are from France. These are two examples:
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Monday, April 12, 2010
One freezer hint if you need your dish before you are ready to bake. Line the dish with heavy duty foil before adding the tortillas. Cover tightly before placing in the freezer. Once it is frozen, remove the tin foil containing your enchiladas and place in a gallon freezer bag. Now you have your dish. The tin foil can be placed in the casserole dish when you are ready to bake. Just be sure to uncover the top.
Friday, April 9, 2010
I set out searching for a good steam mop. That brings me to my favorite thing....the Eureka Enviro Steamer. I opted not to purchase any additional clean cloths. I am using cloths made out of old towels to supplement the two than came with the steamer. I love how clean the floor feels after I mop. I also love that the floor dries almost instantly. In fact I love the steamer enough that I have been known to mop three or four times a week.
Just for information the one thing I have always hated more than mopping is scrubbing the tub. I need to find an equally great item for cleaning the tub. If only all of those little bubbles really scrubbed the tub like they do in the commercials. Oh well, a gal can dream.
Thursday, April 8, 2010
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
I prefer to make a butter recipe cake mix with real butter. I also used fresh eggs from my parents' chickens. I ended up using Bantam eggs, which are smaller than regular eggs but taste just as good.
Tuesday, April 6, 2010
I am a Duke fan because of Coach Mike Krzyzewski. About 18 years ago I had the honor of meeting him at the Atlanta Tip-Off Club. He was kind, patient, and really nice. He made such an impression on me that if Duke had never won another game I would have been a fan. Fortunately he is not only a wonderful person but also a wonderful coach. Congratulations to the National Champions Duke and Coach K!
Monday, April 5, 2010
Friday, April 2, 2010
Here is a better picture of the wreath. It is a grapevine wreath that I already had. I wired on some white flower garlands leftover from another wreath. The butterflies are also leftover. I wanted something spring-y that I could leave up for several months.
Thursday, March 4, 2010
Next is JJ doing what he does best - taking a nap.
Lucy looks as if she is being punished. Instead she is waiting for someone to come by so that she can pounce on them. She hates to be attacked by her brother or sister but has no problem being the attacker.
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
Tuesday, March 2, 2010
Monday, March 1, 2010
I am a cat person and did this in the colors of my cat Lucy. I also happened to have this yard in my craft room. It has a holder behind the cat that stores the bottle of dish washing detergent.
It was not a necessary project, but I hate washing dishes. At least this little kitty makes me smile a bit!
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
I needed a sweet snack. I had all of the ingredients for making cinnamon rolls. I ended up doing two pans for a total of 36. I expected to have plenty leftover for my DH to take to work the next day. They were very popular and none were leftover. I was surprised that everyone was so taken with them. This is a fairly basic recipe with basic ingredients. I suppose no one makes homemade cinnamon rolls any more.
I ended up with two dishes made mainly with on-hand ingredients. I did buy the olives for around $2.50. However, I have olives leftover to go into salads, on pizza, or just for snacks. Party foods do not have to be fancy or expensive. A little creativity can go a long way!
Monday, February 15, 2010
Older sister Lucy was not so happy. She followed in my footsteps before making a mad dash to the table on the deck. She promptly found the un-iced portion and walked in circles. After Paris scared her she ran at full speed back into the house.
Sago palms and snow do not normally appear in the same picture.
The deck Friday night and Saturday morning
Monday, February 8, 2010
My morning routine is:
~Swish & swipe the bathroom
~Feed & water pets
~Clean litter box
I also get out of my PJs and get dressed including hair and makeup. It makes me feel more put together for unexpected visitors.
The afternoon consists of deep cleaning in a different room each day. I do one to two loads of laundry. If it is raining I do more loads on the sunny days. I also do Flylady's zone mission and exercise.
My evening routine helps me wrap up the day and prepare for the next. Each day I:
~Sweep & steam floor (sometimes just sweep)
~Feed & water pets again
~Pick out clothes for the next day
~Take out any foods for following day's meal
~Take out trash
~Clean up kitchen (I hate waking up to a dirty kitchen.)
Of course I have plenty of other chores to do throughout the day. This list keeps me on track. I still have plenty of time to play and relax. My routines definitely help me keep the house in order.