Questions, Answers and Comments - December 2015

 This month I'm just going to start at the beginning and work my way to the end, rather than group comments by category(post title) as I've done in the past.  It was a short month for posts anyway.  December 2, I posted a book review  The Mexican Slow Cooker.  I made comment that I didn't have multiple slow cookers.  Well I do have a small round 1 quart and I have a larger one.  Lana commented that she had several of various sizes and I know Rhonda and a few others do, too.  I don't cook for anyone much except John and I and so I have no need of multiple cookers.  I have yet to try one of these recipes but I mean to change that in the coming month.  I am looking for fresh inspiration in my menus!  Dawn reminded me that some people love kitchen appliances and don't shun them the way I do, lol.  I have in my possession a waffle iron, a meat slicer, an electric knife sharpener, a blender and an electric frying pan besides my two crock pots.  There's also a pressure cooker and an ice cream machine that have never been used.  I might add that I bought only the meat slicer and crock pots.  All else were gifts and aside from the blender and waffle iron are sadly under or never used.

On the November Q,A,C post Rhonda asked if Virginia was back to blogging...Not yet.  I am hopeful she will pick it up again and I think she has some idea of blogging about her homesteading efforts.  So far they have the farmhouse and acreage but no livestock and they weren't able to garden this year due to a knee injury she suffered while they were moving in.  I think she's mended pretty well and I hope she picks blogging back up soon.

Kip, I went and looked for the Barefoot pink champagne...No luck in my shopping areas.  I even went into the liquor store to look for it.  I came away with a huge bottle of Moscato and that will have to suffice for this year, lol.
I am so pleased that you, too, are attempting to pull your wardrobe together.  I chuckle at how often I've said, "Oh I've nothing to wear!"  I didn't realize all the possibilities I did have and now here I am truly wondering how I ever thought a closet full of clothes was 'nothing'.  I saw a blurb in a magazine about a Good Housekeeping editor who wore the same white shirt and black pants to work every day for one?/two? weeks and NO ONE NOTICED because she accessorized differently each day.  Well...I can certainly manage with my handful of things.  I'm working up a winter wardrobe post already and hope to put together a few more outfits before posting.  I won't do but the one post this time and perhaps one for each season of the year in 2016.

The first savings post of the month, Lana added her list of things she did in the comments.  I love this sort of sharing and if any of you would like to share a blog link to your own savings posts or simply want to share in the comments, please do.  It's a great opportunity for all of us to learn new tricks or be reminded of old ones we'd forgotten.

Leigh  Salads are one area I mean to be more creative in this year.  A salad is a good addition to any meal, both for the fiber and the nutrients but I do get bored with the same old same old sort of thing all the time.  John's not much for fancy lettuces.  He tolerates Bibb and Romaine and the occasional Spinach salad but he'd be happiest if I'd stick with Iceberg.  This time of year, lettuces tend to go up in price and so I'm looking for other ways to get a side salad on my plate.  We'll see if I come up with anything new.

Pam, I thought of you this week as I took down Christmas decorations and there was a fine sifting of glitter over the ottoman, carpet and chair seats I used to hold things.  I told John we had to vacuum the furniture and clear it up or we'd be strowing glitter over all the house and be wearing it until June.

Your red and white themed tree sounds pretty.  I visited blogs the other day and Clarice at Storybook Woods did a red and white theme this year.  It was so pretty!

It was this month I decided to change the format of my first post each week, This Week In My Home.  I'm liking the new format pretty well and it's a change I think I'll keep.

Gramma D there was a rather funny episode in our home where I discovered that John didn't like green beans overall.  He likes Kentucky Wonder (Italian broad) beans but not green beans per se.  Well that was 14 years into our marriage and we'd been eating green beans three times a week!  Gee he might have mentioned it somewhere along the way prior to I serve them once a week at most and sometimes not that often despite what my menu might say.

I was happy to note that I have 3 pounds of frozen green peas.  Those I do like frozen, to eat raw and cooked both.  They never disappoint, unlike the frozen green beans.

Judy,  That tall boy asked if I'd mind if he made a pallet on the floor next to the bed.  His wife wasn't very happy but he said he wanted to stretch out and not feel he was leaving half himself off, lol.  I don't think when I get my bedstead painted he'll like the bed any better, as it has head and foot boards.

Sarah,  I missed giving this year.  My kids got gift cards, their request and Mama was the only person who received a wrapped gift besides the two grands that I was able to visit with.  All the others got gift cards sent to their homes so their parents could buy them presents.  Not ideal but a lot cheaper than shipping which hurt our budget something fierce.

Karla  I never did get that tuna pasta salad made.  It has stayed pretty warm here and would have suited any day but I never had fresh vegetables to add in when I thought of it and never thought of it when I had the fresh vegetables on hand.  It is good and light but filling and especially nice in the deep heat of summer.

I'll surprise you with this one...I don't have plastics for storage containers (except the KFC single serve side dish ones).  I save wide mouth jars (salsa and pickle jars usually) and remove the labels and use those.  Annabelle at Bluebirds Are Nesting  paints her lids and applies a rose decal to them.  Her storage jars look mighty fancy but they are saved ones just like mine.

I save the quart sized yogurt and cottage cheese containers these days  to put broth in the freezer since I've lost a few jars to bursting.  I store my things in the old chiffarobe I have in my kitchen, in one of the drawers.  I find it's easiest to pack things into that drawer...but it's an ongoing organizational struggle and if I ever conquer it fully I'll be the first to share how I did it!

Sparkiedoll (Rose) shared a list of good reads in the comments section.

December 11, Sarah  I didn't see good prices on turkeys this holiday either nor great buys on baking items.  I was disappointed and my pantry and freezer is barer for it.

Lana I haven't yet tackled defrosting the small freezer.  We put that one in the guest room walk in closet (where my pantry is also) and I have fretted over that carpet getting damp.  I've just this moment remembered the plastic table protectors I bought to put under the grands high chairs and that would do nicely to stack my things on. That freezer is on a washing machine tray, so it's staying put in the closet and I'll dip out the ice that it sheds.

Rhonda Thank you for the compliments on the house.  My goal is to make it look comfortable and inviting.
Josh enjoyed his Christmas this year.  The photo Bess shared was priceless.  Such a happy face!

Erika, Without a doubt the 2L bottles are the least expensive option, but they do go flat before they are finished up. The leftover Coke is usable.  It's a great tenderizer for tough cuts of meat and I saw a recipe on Pinterest that called for Coke and Soy Sauce reduced to use as a sauce.  And there's Coca Cola Cake...Oh dear, maybe I should just stick to cans after all, lol.

Dec 13  Lana I like your calendar method of planning meals.  I tend to use my blog as my 'past planner' and have seriously considered dropping menu planning altogether when I read how often I serve certain meals at certain points of each year, lol.

Dec 16  Lana there were misunderstandings but they were minor.  It was all settled and put to rights quickly, the luxury of dealing with people who are reasonable.  I too have dreaded family interactions.  This year those were non-existent as I didn't see a single one of those chronic problematic folks. THAT was a huge blessing but it came at a high price in one instance...sigh.  And the one I couldn't avoid was soon over.

Pam I like those big 1/2 gallon sized jars for storage.  I purchased a dozen or so last winter for about $4 but you know those things have gone way up since then.  Still they are cheaper than a set of plastic anything and last longer!

Dec 16 Christmas  decorations post  Susie I got those particular snowflakes from Dollar Tree.  I think they may have had them again this year as I saw a Pin about how someone else used them.

Dec 17 Quarterly report  Nathalie, I must confess that my first reaction to the start of  your comment was that it stung.  When I get stung I want to know why and I realized it stung because it was truth!  You are perfectly right in your advice!  I'd assumed things were like they used to be, back 20 odd years ago when I worked in insurance billing.  We verified insurance and services and if a procedure was going to be done we got pre-approval...not so anymore.  I confess, I'm not used to having to do my own insurance work, nor accustomed to the changes that have taken place.  And in a healthy financial mindset, I need to be aware of what will be paid and what won't, what my policy covers and what it doesn't!  So thank you for being iron that sharpens iron and reminding me that this is MY responsibility and duty.  One of my resolutions for 2016 is to LEARN our policies.

Dec 18  In this post I mentioned how pleased I'd been with the Kalamata olives though they were pricey.  Laurie said she found them at the discount grocer.  I never once thought to check at Aldi for them but will.  And I'll be watching for sales.  I just used up the last of them this week and I think they are a great addition to the kitchen stock.

Joy, I love that homemade stock myself.  It's so much better than canned!

Dec 19  So nice to have you all check in and wish us a Merry Christmas right back.  I smiled each time I came across those comments and am smiling even now as I re-read them.

Dec 30 Coffee Chat  Lots of comments about the heart shaped puddle.  It just showed up during a rainy spell last year and it stayed with us all this time.  Of course, it doesn't look like a puddle when the yard is flooded but as it recedes the heart shaped puddle reveals itself all over again.  And it doesn't look anything like a heart in that area when it's dry.  Just a quaint lovely little thing.

Susie  the "peaches, peaches, peaches" mantra does wonders for making cold weather bearable.  I do hope you aren't flooded out in Missouri.   I saw on the news that so many areas there are.

Judy, thank you.  She's a little fighter.  She had a bad turn last Wednesday but rallied and all has been quietly normal for a preemie since then. She's so very tiny looking in the only photo I've seen.  Prayers are deeply appreciated!

Dale, I don't think even the Peach Mantra could make me like 8 inches of snow, but that's the difference in a Georgia girl and a Vermont one!

Sarah, I missed news of the earthquake!  Gracious I'm glad you're okay.  I was thinking of your husband this morning.  I'm glad that you're going to the counseling with the diabetic team.  It was the nutritionist that was such a great help to me.  I pray that all goes as smoothly for your husband as it did for me.

Lana, Chuckling over your four year old fashionista.  I love that the dishes you had went to a home where they were so appreciated.  Be GLAD that you had them to give that pleasure to the recipient.

I am sure the method of using the sponge works great on clearing up the mildew.  I'll be sure and use it when I do it this spring.  I'm definitely investing in mildew resistant paint thought.  Ugh, the mess on the rafters and railings now that we've had two weeks of rain!

Karla,   I spent a month with the word focus one year...I found all sorts of quotes online and really thought about what it meant, etc.  That particular year I started with focus and then focused on one word each month thereafter.  I hope to hear how your year with it goes and how it affects your life overall.


Lana said...

I don's use a sponge for the mildew on the porch. It is a microfiber cloth. Our porch ceiling is mildewed and that will be a bleaching job in the spring. We have to do it every few years but it does save us painting the porch every year.

I have been eyeing a meat slicer but am not at all sure where I would store it. I think it would really save on sandwich meat here. I have enough Amazon gift cards banked but I really have to be sure to be willing to spend them.

Anonymous said...

Love the picture of your grandson. On my tablet the picture is small and being in front of the tree he looks like a tiny elf on the shelf in his red. Gramma D.

Sew Blessed Maw [Judy] said...

Enjoyed your Q & A'S.
So happy the baby is doing well.. Will continue to pray.

Anonymous said...

We just took down Christmas decorations at church last night. No church last week due to snowstorm - 6-8 inches of snow over Christmas. Anyway, there was glitter everywhere! I had to laugh at your glitter comment. Enjoyed this post. Pam

Colleen Gold said...

Terri , If you watch Aldi's for the special sales it is amazing what you can find. Things that would cost me a small fortune at Whole Foods, or Trader Joes

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