Food Storage That Saves Food and Money

It happened again this past week.  My son is staying with me and he was going to make himself a salad for supper.  I told him where to find the lettuce and he asked "Mama...Why do you keep the lettuce wrapped in this cloth?"   I explained to him that it helped keep the lettuce fresh and green and at the same time prevented it spoiling.  It's not uncommon in a slow month that John and I have a package of romaine hearts last us a month, all because of this simple little practice.

For years, I tried all sorts of methods to keep my lettuce fresh.  I bought a 'lettuce keeper' but that didn't do any better than any other method I'd tried.  Then one day when I had time to spare while I was making a salad for supper, I cut the ends off each head of lettuce and washed it well, let it drain, the wrapped it in a cotton cloth and put it in a plastic bag that I could close tightly.  No more rotting lettuce!  In the past I'd hardly been able to go more than two days before the lettuce spoiled after washing but with this method, as I said earlier, I can have lettuce last as long as a month.  And I didn't buy a single thing special to store it in!  I just used an all cotton flour sack towel that I'd cut in half and wrapped the damp lettuce in it then put it in the plastic bag, closed it, popped it in the bottom crisper drawer.

In My Home This Week: True or False Spring?

In my home this week I...

...have been busy as a spring bee this morning.  Is it Spring?  You'd think so by the blooms and weather!  But I am admittedly cautious.  It IS still February.  It is 3 weeks until Spring is officially here.  But yeah.  80 degree days with a green lawn and blooming plants all over is pretty much looking like "Hi honey!  It's SPRING!" to me.

John and I visited the DIY store yesterday and oh how my heart soared.  Flowers and patio furniture and lovely gas grills and seed packets galore!  I could have dropped a cool $1000 and never yet gotten all I longed to have.  In the end I came away with nothing at all and it was pure practicality that made it so.  I do not have ground broken for planting nor pots ready for new plants nor porches cleaned and cleared for furniture.  In the end I satisfied myself with pictures of the golden Ranunculus and gorgeous tulips and determined to come home and get to work right away on my place and make what I have ready for something fresh even if that something fresh is a seed packet of seeds and a can of spray paint to touch up my furnishings.

In My Home This Week: Back In The Saddle Again

In my home this week...

...I shared on Facebook about something very thoughtful John did for me on Sunday of this week.  He was leaving for work and went out to his car as he was leaving.   It was raining.   He backed his car out, parked it near the porch and walked back to the carport.  What he did next brought tears to my eyes.  He got in my car and moved it to the dryer side of the carport.  You see the area where I park is a little lower than the side where he parks.  Over time the ground has rutted so there is a big puddle that forms under the driver side of the car whenever it rains.  No fun stepping into it on a summer's day forget on a chilly cold morning!   He knew I would be going out to church that morning and so he moved my car.  He walked back out into the rain to get into his car and said quietly, "Just so you don't get your feet wet this morning."  I couldn't say a word because I was swallowing the tears back.  

Auto Pilot OFF

Twice of late, I've read of normally thrifty women who said they were spending far more than they had intended in certain areas.  Not completely off their thrifty ways, but they'd noted an increase in spending in areas where they'd not had a problem before.  Both confessed it began as a one time thing and gradually they found they were continually spending that amount of money every time they went into stores.  For one girl, it was in the area of her grocery budget.  She'd had more visitors than usual and was hurried more often than not.  She found herself shopping less frequently and grabbing more convenience foods when she did go to the store.   For the other lady, it was her gift giving budget that had begun to prove problematic.  She'd had several 'extra' gift giving occasions and she found herself giving a higher priced item than she'd meant to give.  It began with one occasion and then the feeling took over that she'd given one person such a nice gift that she couldn't possibly give another something that was obviously of lesser value.  Her intentions had been kindness but before the month was over she'd given nicer gifts to people who didn't even know one another and would never be likely to compare them.

Coffee Chat: All Winter Long

Hello there.  Come in and have something hot and comforting, won't you?

I've been busy.  Not with my new business, much as I'd like to have been, but with life.  Wednesday Katie texted that Taylor had flu.  Before I left home on Thursday to go up to her house, Bess texted that Isaac had flu as well and Josh was sick with a virus.  I knew Sam was heading home that night and so I went on to Katie's.  She has just started her job and can't miss work and that was where it seemed the most need of my services lay.  So I spent two nights there with them, leaving to come home on Saturday morning.

This Week In My Home: Light At the End of The Tunnel

This week in my home, I...

...can see light at the end of the tunnel.  This week Bess and Sam accepted an offer on their home.  With a projected move in six weeks time, we all put our heads together and they finally determined that they would live in one of the houses on the property until they could build one of their own.  This was not a lightly reached decision.  John and I discussed the price difference in a manufactured home and a house and we agreed that for us, we'd choose manufactured housing all over again.  However, the kids have not been able to find all the elements they desire in any floor plan to date and the additional items bring the price point far closer to that of traditional stick built housing than to a manufactured home price.

A Prairie Girl's Faith by Steven Hines: Book Review

I've had this book for several months now because I've been so busy, but oh my goodness, I'm glad I added it to my collection of books by and about Laura Ingalls Wilder.

No surprise that she grew up with a faith filled life.   Pioneer life was not for the faint of heart, nor for the child, man or woman, who grew up in such a place.  It was a matter of more than sheer stamina for hard work and hardship.  It was more than just a blind faith.  It took a practical faith, one that knew how to make do and do without and one that understood that in all things there are seasons.

While the title of the book would lead one to believe it is merely about Laura's Christian leanings, it is not.  There are historical references to the church, to hymns likely sung, to family life and timelines of important life events.  There are recipes and gleanings from relatives and personal acquaintances.  As always Stephen Hines has been most thorough in his research and in his sharing and that is deeply appreciated in this book.

I leave you with Laura's own words:  "Let us with humble hearts, give thanks for the revelation to us and our better understanding of the greatness and goodness of God."

This Week In My Home: Rainy Days, Sunny Days, Winter Days

In my home this week, I...

...have been in a very relaxed mood overall, but now that the end of the week is nearing, I'm in a hurry.   Katie called to say that Taylor has flu.  Katie can't miss work and Matt is too swamped to take off, so Grandmamas to the rescue.  I'm picking up the baton in this relay for Friday.  Hence my hurry today to post this and get out of the house.  I'm all packed.  Just need to finish up lunch, which is taking forever to thaw in the oven naturally, and then head out.  John is already missing me, lol.  Very sweet but Gramma knows she must go where she is needed most.

Bess texted a few minutes ago and Isaac has the flu as well, while Josh is also sick but not with flu.   Jd contacted us early this week and all three children were ill there.  Fortunately he's off and able to care for them.   Then Amie called....Yep, it's been through their home twice now, but she said they have all survived it.

In My Home This Week: All Routine