Thursday, September 19, 2013

Move Over Peter Piper

Peter is not the only one who has been picking peppers. Pop visited a neighbor yesterday in search of a few tomatoes for the table and this is a few of the items he brought home. Pop doesn't eat sweet peppers unless they are cooked up in meatloaf or Spanish Rice. And even then he won't admit that he eats them.

I cleaned and sliced and diced the peppers at 3 o'clock this morning, since I couldn't sleep. I think my nap time has been getting later and later each day, and some days I miss it all together. That must be the reason I cannot get a good night's sleep lately. When I miss my nap totally, that causes me to go to bed earlier. It seems I am getting more and more like Mom every day. She only needed 4 hours of sleep nightly, then she was up and ready to start the new day. I guess taking a nap in the mid afternoon helps to supply us with enough sleep to warrant only 4 hours of night sleep.Whatever works!

I diced and froze about a half gallon freezer bag of the peppers, and saved a few slices for me to munch on with cream cheese. I have read that bright colorful veggies is a great help in warding off cancer. The brighter the colors the better. So I have saved the seeds from all of the various types of peppers in hopes of growing some next Spring.They will be so pretty in my new raised bed.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Patience is not one of my strong suites.

“Waiting and hoping is a hard thing to do when you've already been waiting and hoping for almost as long as you can bear it.” 
― Jenny NimmoCharlie Bone and the Time Twister

I have waited so long for a really nice raised bed, and now I am getting impatient to see something growing in it. I couldn't stand it any longer. I went to town today and picked up a few plants, plus I dug a few from my yard, and set them out in my new bed. They won't have long to do much, but hopefully there will be enough time for me to tell if the soil needs adjustments. I love to work with the soil, and you can usually tell by the plants as to whether it needs something more or not. I'm hoping to see these plants fill out nicely before he first frost arrives. With the strange weather we have been having this year, one never knows what to expect.

These two pictures are of a new plant I found today. It is the Trumpet Flower. I believe it is the same family as the Moon Flower I have been growing now for several years. The nursery had it in yellow, and now I am wishing I had bought one of them,too.This flower was so strange, I could not resist bringing it home.

Friday, September 13, 2013

What has happened to Creativity?

 Creativity?  It seems so many folks have lost the ability to be creative. When I was growing up, there was little money to be found for extras like toys. Today, kids feel they must have the latest craze, which in most cases, is a hand held computer or game of some sort. Imagination and creativity are out the window.
I wonder just how many folks take the time to explain to their children that they need to learn to be creative. If one is creative, they will never have time to be bored. You can look around and find something to do or make at any given moment of the day. I only wish I had time to make, and do, and cook all of the great creative ideas that pop into my head every minute of every day.
a ring to hold cords

I really didn't have the time, or so I thought, but I grabbed up an empty paper towel roll and was headed to the garbage can with it, when I got to thinking of all the things one could do with this empty roll. I stopped and pulled out a roll of red duct tape and a pair of scissors and created a little ring holder for my cell phone recharging cord. One can always use such a thing for help in keeping things neat in a drawer. Cords especially.One could find so many uses for such a ring.

This is only a small example of a creative idea,and it's another way of keeping such items out of the landfills and reducing our carbon footprint.

Have you taken the time lately, to sit down with your children or grandchildren and shown them different ways to be creative and reduce their own carbon footprint?

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Pop's Mexican Goulash Revised

I did some research and goulash is a soup or stew of sorts,but Pop and a good friend of his, came up with this recipe while working away from home with the construction crew. Being men, they naturally had to have meat, potatoes, onions, and some hot ingredients. Pop's friend, Gene, threw in the Spanish Rice, a strange addition since it's called Mexican Goulash. I guess Pop and Gene just grabbed the name out of the air, for lack of anything better.

Nevertheless, we now cook this dish quite often at our house. It's fairly simple to fix, has several components, and is a complete meal. This is one dish with which Pop does not require Cornbread. He prefers regular sliced bread, and I don't require bread that much with any meal. Thus, a very simple dinner.

First, I fry my sliced potatoes, onions, and hot sausage until smothered down good and thoroughly cooked. I add my seasonings of choice while it is cooking. Usually Creole Seasoning, salt and pepper.The sausage provides enough grease for frying. If not, I simply add a little Canola or vegetable oil. After all is thoroughly cooked, I set it aside and cook a batch of Spanish Rice,whether it be from a package or from scratch. We normally use packaged. It's so much quicker. When the rice is cooked and we are ready to eat, we put a heaping helping of the potatoes in our plate, then cover it with the rice. Pop tops his with more hot sauce. I find the seasonings already in the dish are sufficient for me.

But tonight........I sauteed a green sweet pepper,a red sweet pepper, and an huge onion, in another skillet. I was afraid Pop would not want these healthy vegetables messing up his recipe, and I was right. So......I ladled them over my plate of Goulash. It was heavenly. I definitely will be trying that again.

I am already planning to grow more sweet peppers and onions next season in my new raised garden bed. I can't wait. I plan to dice and freeze lots of them for adding to my meals, even if I can't convince Pop to try them.I may try gradually adding a few now and then, to his meals. It's kinda like turning on the burner under the frog in the pot of water. You know the story.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Coconut Oil

I have been doing a bit of research lately about coconut oil. This is not the first time I have read and decided to try it. The research done by some, have found it to improve and/or diminish  the problems caused by dementia and Alzheimer's disease. I know it is all in the early stages of discovering what will or will not help, but I am willing to try this simple additive. I know from previous reading that there are good oils and there are bad oils where our health is concerned, but they seem to be finding, that by eliminating coconut oil completely, we are loosing out on a very important substance that is required for the brain to function properly. Maybe they don't know all there is to know at this point, but am willing to try to help myself by using this oil now and then in various ways. I used it today on a salad, in combination with my usual dressing, and never even knew it was there. No distinct taste was detected. Hopefully I will be able to find many ways to add at least a tablespoon to my meals daily.I am not expecting overnight results, but hopefully,in the long run,I will see results.  Only time will tell.

Patty, Here's Your Sign!

I said sign, but really, it's a chalkboard. One of the ladies at the local Grocery,three miles from my home, had mentioned wanting a chalkboard for the porch so she could post the lunch special for the day. It is a very small grocery, but they do serve a wonderful breakfast and some simple lunches to the locals,mostly farmers,who are out and about, and don't wish to drive back to their homes for lunch. Then, too, it's a nice gathering place for the locals to socialize when they are not in Pop's garage.  Pop and I eat breakfast there on an average of 2-3 times a week. Usually when we need to get right to some pre-planned task for the day. I inherited an easel in a bunch of yard sale type goodies, and it is entirely too big for my purposes, so I am donating that to the cause,too. Hopefully, I'll get a picture of the board all set up and in use shortly. Patty and her Mother-in-law,who does the cooking at the store, have experienced the loss of a close family member and they are most likely taking a day or two off anyway. Our thoughts and prayers are with their family at this time.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Just Add Worms

Super Reds European Night Crawlers    


As usual, I got so excited, I forgot to take pictures. I received my night crawlers today. 500 to be exact. Well, I didn't count them, but I trust Uncle Jim is an honest man. I have ordered from him before and was satisfied with my product back then, so I'm assuming all will be fine this time around. I dabbled with Red Wigglers at that time, but wanted something a little bigger for my latest project. The wigglers were more of a food scrap composting type. I wanted these for my newly built raised beds to help build up and loosen the soil. I've tried to bring in night crawlers before and folks always say, "Oh, they multiply like crazy. You'll have loads of them before you know it." Not! I wonder if my soil is too hard for them to get established. Surely the new bed I've built will help them to get off to a good start, to multiply and do their thing. Not such an outrageous investment at approximately ten cents a piece, but I'll not try it again if they fail to take hold. I'm not holding my breath, but I may keep my fingers crossed in hopes that they survive and do good.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

What have I been eating?

I have tried to find some information on the herb, garlic, but cannot find what I need.  I have this plant, and I have been using it as garlic. I can only hope it is edible, and I am sure it must be, since I am still alive, but I would love to know more about it. I don't remember when or where I first got the plant, but I have heard that chives have a round leaf blade and garlic has a flat leaf blade. I have found pictures of chives and they have a similar flower, only blue in color. So what have I got here? If it is garlic, I would love to grow more of it and learn more about it. I don't use a lot of herbs, but I do like to grow a few and use them occasionally.I have clipped the leaves of this plant and used it in various dishes thinking it was garlic, but now, I am not sure. Any help would be appreciated, but meanwhile, I will continue to do more research of my own.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Recovering! (from the Camping Trip from Hell)

me  cleaning up after breakfast
Leah's first solo on jet ski
outhouse built by friends
nephew BJ taking the girls for a ride on the jet ski
family doing more socializing with Pop
morning after the storm
BJ had a huge water tank elevated above this trailer for a gravity fed shower and dish washing.

These are a few shots from our camping trip. So glad you can't capture emotions, because I was in misery the entire time. I don't mind the camping, but there were so many negatives during the entire trip, I did not enjoy the trip nearly as much as everyone else. There always has to be someone over seeing everything, and I am elected most of the times we have camp outs.Pop could eat his meals out of a cooler and never unpack the planned kitchen set up unless it's the coffee pot and the iron skillet which he uses over the open fire.When BJ camps out, he has a generator and grills. We have lights and fans,etc. We use a makeshift shower, which is kinda nice. Some friends of BJ's used his campsite for an outing and for payment, they built an BJ an outhouse for the camp site. That was better than having to fight the poison oak and ivy in the woods.
The first day we were there, it was too hot to catch your breath.That night, we had a horrible wind and rain storm. Remember, we(Pop and I) were sleeping in a tent. Leah, the little Princess she is, had to sleep in My Lincoln(with the windows partially down).BJ and one other couple who stayed the night, both had make shift campers, made from horse trailers. They had no worries, other than the supplies and the boats,etc.that were out in the open, getting blown away in the wind or rushing river. My bedding got saturated with water. Pop was on a blow up mattress. He remained dry and slept through most of the storm.Leah was dry. She said she simply covered her head when the storm hit, never giving it a thought to raise the windows of my Lincoln. Needless to say, I have spent the next two days trying to dry out my Lincoln.
These are only a few of the negatives from my point of view and I could go on with many more, but I think you get the picture, although from the pictures, it seems I was the only soul there that was not having a blast. I guess you could say that camping is not my "cup of tea".