Monday, January 30, 2023

The Difference a Day Makes

 Good morning.  I know I don't usually post on Monday - but felt the need to update all, on what is going on.  The difference of a day can makes such a difference in lives.  Something we all tend to forget from time to time.

My niece R passed around 4:30 PM on Sunday afternoon.  She had been off life support for about 26 hours.  Her body is healed now, and she is at peace.  They said she left this world very peacefully.  She should be with her daddy (my brother) and the Lord now.
My heart is so sad, but I know we all have days that are numbered.  I am so happy her children got to be with to say good-bye the day before.  We love you sweet girl!

Fluffy had a bad night.  We had a great day yesterday, then she had another really bad night.  She is weak and doesn't want to eat or drink.  Lots of bladder control problems.  She had more hemorrhaging last night (so not believing it is a tooth now).   I am not optimistic at this point.
Just keeping her comfortable in this time of need.  She is an older kitty as well - and it seems that my life with all the older kitties I have had, is nearing completion.  I will love her till the end and beyond.  I am so happy that I have gotten to have this special time with her.

UPDATE:  Fluffy has crossed the rainbow bridge.  We went to the Vet and she was one sick little girl.  No coming back from it.  End stage liver damage and most likely cancer (from blood draw #'s) - none of which was seen in May when at the Vet - so very aggressive.  She is at peace and playing with all that went before her in beautiful heaven.  Run free my sweet dainty fur baby.

I am going to take 2 or 3 days off from posting.  My brain is a fog, and I am just tired emotionally.
I will be back in a few days.
I hope you all have a blessed day.  Hug the ones you are with.

Sunday, January 29, 2023

Weekly Wrap Up 1/29

 Happy Sunday to all on this last Sunday of January.  I hope this finds you all well and safe.
It is in the 40's this morning and drizzling rain out.  It is to get colder as the day goes on and then we are to have very cold and seasonal week.  I guess it is time.  We have been so fortunate in my area this winter.  Each week that passes, puts us one more week closer to spring!

Updates on my week.  
My niece has been removed from all life support yesterday at 2PM.  They removed her breathing tube; she is now resting on her own devices.  She has been moved to hospice care within the hospital - yesterday was not her day.  All I can think is - in God's time!  God knows when we leave this earth - we do not - not even the doctors can predict.  He must not be ready for her to leave this planet yet.
I want to thank everyone for their prayers and continued prayers.

Fluff is now an indoor kitty.  Thursday and Friday were pretty rough.  She was not a well kitty, after her roaming about.  Her eyes were all goopy and they are now clean and clear.  Both of those nights she slept curled up in my arms.  I really thought I was losing her Friday.  She started having blood come from her mouth.  Well, it appears she lost a tooth, and it was bleeding.  After we got through that - things have improved.  She is eating - gravy foods only.  She is drinking lots of water.  She is pooing in her box.  She is still having a little problem with controlling her bladder and using the box each time!  She has discovered floor registers and the vent on the front of frig and loves the warmth!!!!!  This morning has been the best morning so far.  She slept in a little bed I made her last night - and she come in and greeted me as soon as she heard me stirring.  I am loving her and babying her to the best of my ability!  Will do what needs done, as long as possible.

YES!  God watches over the tiny birds, the flowers, the critters great and small, and YOU and ME!  That is special.

MY week:
  • I did go out Monday to fill my gas tank.  I had .90 per gallon discount to use and had to use before the end of the month.  It was going to snow, so I went out and filled the tank.  I ended up paying 2.31 per gal.!  I had such a good discount, because last month I got 4X points on GC's I purchased for gifts.  Win - win!
  • I stopped at the bank and cashed a $180 check I received in the mail.
  • I made a batch of homemade biscuits.
  • Moved a lot of slush and snow - we had such a slushy wet mix mid-week.  It was heavy!!!!!!!!
  • Thawed a pound of ground sausage - used part in a dish I made and sliced patties and cooked and then froze for later.
  • I found a partial pack of eggroll wrappers in the freezer.  They had been in there for ages!  I sliced into strips, spritzed with oil and salt - and baked a few minutes until crisp.  Great fun and they were good on my dinner one day and I just ate the rest.  No waste.
  • NO grocery or any other shopping this week
  • Laundry catch-up.
  • LOTS of extra laundry and cleaning with Fluffy accidents - that is OK
  • Using what I have, using leftovers, and trying to make some different foods.
  • Just normal cleaning and dusting and vacuuming
My meals this past week:
Broccoli/cauliflower sauté over rice - topped with bacon crumbles
TOTchos - nachos made over tator tots!
Egg, cheese and spicy summer sausage biscuits
Taco/cheese beef hotdogs and green beans
Egg roll in a bowl - used the strips I made on top!  
Beef Manhattan made with biscuit - mashed potatoes
Baked potato topped with corned beef (freezer) and Swiss cheese
                                                                TOTchos - very good
                                                        My yummy 'meal' biscuits

SNACKS - had 2 small waffle sections (freezer) with peanut butter, an extra hotdog, leftover mashed potatoes, biscuit w/jelly, oranges and green beans.
Weird snacks - but using up leftovers!!!!!! - All was tasty.

How has your week been?  I hope you maybe found some deals and bargains.  Is the weather nasty where you are?  We had an icky day or 2 - but just normal after that - yesterday was much warmer.
Love hearing what everyone is up too.

I hope you all have a safe and healthy week.  I pray for each of you.
Blessings from my humble little home to you and yours.

Seek His will in all you do, and He will direct your paths.
Proverbs 3:6

Lord, Decisions do not come easily for many of us.  We have made mistakes and falter at times.  When we give it to You, You guide us and help us on our journey.  When grief engulfs us, keep us in Your arms and help us on the path forward.  Guide us to make the wisest decisions and help lead us to the right direction.  We thank You for each and every blessing we receive each day.  Amen

Prayer is our acknowledgment of needing God in our life,

Thursday, January 26, 2023

One of Those Days

 Life can take a lot of turns.  It can give us lemons and it can give us lemonade.  You all know I try my darndest to be upbeat and happy - even through sad times. I am a proverbial optimist - a Pollyanna if you will.  I do know there is far more good in our lives than bad - we just have to realize it.
Some days are harder than others.

UPDATE:  My niece has no brain activity, and the family made a decision to remove life support.  That will be done on Saturday at 2PM.  That gives her mom, one of her sister's and her one daughter time to get here from another state, and her other sister and child to get there to say good-bye.  Such a sad situation.  My heart hurts for them all.
I totally understand though.  Just being hooked up to all those tubes is not living - it is existing.  Her soul needs to be free.  I haven't seen her in many years due to her estrangement with family, but I will still miss her and I love her.

I do believe my Fluffy has gone off to end her life on this land.  She is here every single day and never leaves the property.  She is the daintiest kitty I have ever had.  Lately she has been VERY talkative and oh so loving.  She has cuddled and wanted pets and combing more than any other time.  Maybe I should have seen that as a sign.  I thought she was just getting closer with me due to older age.
She ate wonderfully yesterday, chased a birdie, pottied fine, and we loved and cuddled before I brought their food in for the night.  It is still dark out - but at first light, I will be out looking.  It hurts my heart that she would go away to die.  She is 13, and has always been an outdoor baby with no wanting to come inside.
I may be wrong - but I doubt it.
Blackie seemed confused this morning too - when I went out to feed.  He ate - but kept looking all around the greenhouse and smelling everything.
I do believe that now I am down to one!
It stinks when your furbbies get older.  You just never know.  Blackie is still relatively young at about 5 years old.

I will try to see goodness in the day, in spite of things.  I got up healthy this morning.  The snows weren't as bad as they called for yesterday.  I have so much of my family and friends still on this earth.  I have memories that sustain me.  I have God in my heart.
I have all of you.

UPDATE:  This little Fluff butt showed up!  Don't know what was going on as she never leaves.  She was ravenous too!
Thank you for kind thoughts.  She just MAY have to become a house cat - whether she wants to or not!
She sure scared this Momma.

Make each and everyday count people.  SMILE and LAUGH when you can.  Make someone else smile and laugh.  Do goodness all the time.  Hold your loves close.
I am not looking for sympathy at all.  There are so many people going through so much in this world, and I am but one.
Just a reminder to be all you can be and spread happiness and love when you have the chance.  Accept love and joy in any way it is offered to you.

Have a blessed day my friends.

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

What we ate Back in the Day!

 I guess this kind of goes along with yesterday's post of finding new ways to use what you have.
When I was growing up, my folks didn't have a lot of money, so we didn't get a lot of specialty store bought stuff.  I came along 10 years after the other kids - so they really had it rougher.  Mom had a lot more to feed then!!!!
Mom's grocery budget was $15 from my first memory.  Then at some point (I think in my teens) it got raised to $25!  She sure did a good job of shopping wisely and feeding us all well.
There never a Sunday that I can remember that there wasn't a lot of extended family that just SHOWED UP right at dinner time!  They all got fed - even if mom didn't. She would just say, "I'm not hungry".

We had a lot of basic meals.  I also have heard the stories of my siblings about some of the super BUDGET meals.  We ate what there was and we were always full.

I remember that most Sundays the meal was fried chicken and all the sides.
Saturday evenings was always hamburgers, homemade French fries or homemade baked beans.

My siblings remember when things were at the end of the groceries and they ate simply.  Bowls of cornbread topped with milk, was an end of the month food.  A big pot of beans also was kept going on the wood stove. (I don't remember the wood stove).  They ate simply, but never went hungry.
When the siblings were growing up - there were chickens and rabbits and a couple goats.  I missed all that!!!!!
We can do the same - but people seem to think they are being deprived today.  I find that kind of sad.

Click on picture to enlarge.  Cake - no eggs, milk or butter needed.  Called depression cake.

What we ate a lot of:
Spaghetti - homemade sauce (not always w/meat)
Tomato soup (homemade) and a sandwich
Chipped beef gravy over toast or biscuits/scones - I still love that
Oatmeal (a lot) - I think why I don't like it today
Rice pudding
PBJ - sandwiches used homemade bread
Tuna casserole
Soup beans
Veggie soup or potato soup
Potato pancakes w/leftover potatoes
Fish - daddy would catch
Lots of biscuits/scones
We ate many a tomato or cucumber or onion sandwiches (still a fav) in the summer
ALL things that were grown in the 1/4 acre garden. Mom froze and canned
We had grapes, raspberries and fruit trees
Chicken and noodles was a real treat - mom made the noodles from scratch (Mmmmm)  I miss those
Fried cornmeal mush

ALL sweets were homemade.  I truly think I was in my teens before I had store bought cookies!
Mom made cake, pie, cookies, candy, popcorn balls, cobblers, you name it!!!!!!  We LOVED it!
Popcorn was an evening snack (dad grew it in the garden).  If mom was in the mood, she made homemade potato chips.  They were such a wonderful treat.

Bologna was cheap back then - so once in a while there would be bologna sandwiches and daddy loved fried bologna.  A treat.
Baking goods and meat was about the extent of what mom bought at the store.  NO canned soups or veggies or fruit.  We used what we grew.  The meals were often very heavy on veggies, with just a small serving of meat.
When I was little we didn't have chickens (they did with the other kids), but we had a neighbor who raised chickens - there was always trades for meat and eggs.
There was NO fast food or restaurants - maybe a drink if we were on a trip.  We took food with us.  No junk food, other than homemade things.  No soda pop on a regular basis (that was a treat).

Life was simple - we were well fed - and we never complained or really knew any different.  That was how most people around us ate as well.
MAYBE if people could let go of their ego's, they would see that one can survive and survive well on a whole lot less.  
I think if many people cut out the junk food, the convenience foods and all those specialty drinks, they could save a bundle.

Even when funds were slim - we had a good life.  I am so glad I was raised the way I was.  It made me appreciate a lot of the simpler things in life.  
I like simple and slow paced.
Just a step back in time.

There are many beautiful reasons to smile and be thankful.

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

Waste Not - Use It!!!!

We have all heard to term - waste not - want not.  So very true.  If you raise your own food or buy groceries, why would you want to waste any of the efforts?  Use every bit you can in some new and different way!  There are a lot of uses that most people would never think of.

Did you know that carrot tops, or those of beets, radish, turnips, etc. are all edible?  Yes they are.  They have a lot of vitamins and nutrients as well.  I have cooked radish and turnip greens many times and they are tasty.  Each has a different flavor.
You can also use these greens to make pesto!!!  It doesn't have to be just basil!!!!!  You would need about 2 cups chopped, to blend with your oil mixture and seasonings.

Most people think they are tough and just trash them.  I peel them, cook as normal, and they are my favorite bite!!!!  They are so yummy.
You can also slice very thinly, drizzle with oil and seasoning and bake at 400* for about 30-40 minutes for a veggie chip!

Lightly zest what you can and freeze for future use.  Also use the peels to make a zero waste all-natural all-purpose cleaner.  I have listed the method before.  It works nicely, smells good, and it also helps keep ants at bay!!!!

Many people use them to shine and clean the leaves on their house plants (and shoes).  Rub them over a bug bite to stop the itch.  They can be eaten as well!!!!!!  Chop and add to smoothies.  Bake with sugar or honey.  Caramelize with sugar and water - tasty on ice cream. 
The peels are full of essential nutrients and vitamins!!!!!

Use the cores to make apple cider vinegar.  2 C sugar, 2 C water and many apple cores.  Let it ferment for a few weeks.
Use leftover peel to make apple scrap jelly.  Very tasty.  Also, can bake with a sprinkle of sugar and cinnamon - what a tasty treat.
You can make jelly with peels from peaches or any cling fruit.
You can also dehydrate peels and scraps and make fruit powders - so good to add to smoothies, Jell-O or pudding or on top of ice cream.

Bake them!!!!!!  Top with cheese or any other goodies and bake until skin is crispy.  These used to be purchased at many restaurants and were a costly appetizer.  Lots of vitamins in the skins.

Pickle them!  It seems to be a midwestern thing - but they sure are tasty.  Mom used to make pickles and can them.

Onion skins, scrapings, butt ends, stems, etc. - keep in a container or baggy until you have enough (in freezer) to make veggie stock.  You can also add this to meat bones and scraps for an extra tasty meat stock.

Oh my - many uses.  Breadcrumbs, croutons, dressing bread.  Use to make bread pudding or French toast.  Many, many uses.

Yes, it is good for the garden - but it is also great for a facial scrub!!!! 1/4 C grounds (used), 1/4 C brown sugar and 1/4 C coconut oil.  Mix together in a small container and use to scrub your face - your face feels so fresh and clean afterwards.  Rinse with cool water.

It may be outdated and not working in baking - but it doesn't mean it is done.
Sprinkle on rugs and carpets - let it set a while and then vacuum.  Removes a lot of stale smells.  Use the open box in the refrigerator or freezer to collect smells.  Use in the bathroom as a dusting powder for underarms as a deodorant.  Use with peroxide and use as a tooth whitener.  (My dentist recommends this once a week).  Use as a cleaner in the kitchen and bath.  Use on a damp rag and scrub the oily stove and counters.

Leftover and stale SODA POP - use as flavoring liquid when baking.  Also use to make Jell-O - it adds a lot of fun flavor.  You can also freeze into cubes to use in flavoring drinks and it doesn't water them down.

MILK that is starting to get just a tad off - make biscuits or waffles or pancakes.  Mom always made biscuits with soured milk.  You can freeze into cubes and use in smoothies.

Place in the oven for a while to freshen up!  They will crisp up and still be tasty.  Now you want to make sure nuts are just stale and not rancid.  I even crips up chips and crackers in the microwave - just start with about 30 seconds and see what happens.

GROW food from scraps.  I have started celery and Romaine lettuce from the intact butt ends.  I start in water until I get roots - then I plant in pot.  It isn't the big plant I bought - but it is something I can use!  Also, people do this with green onions - they use the green part and plant the white bulb.  I have always eaten the entire thing!  Maybe that is a Midwest thing as well.  We never wasted any part.
I have chives I can cut for greens and I also use wild onions from the yard in the spring.

Use up those leftover bones, skin, fat scraps from any kind of meat.  Add water and cook until you get a nice deep colored stock.  So good and good for you.  It tastes nothing like the stuff you buy.

I take the tough ends of asparagus and dehydrate them.  Then I run it through the coffee grinder for asparagus powder.  Adds a lot of flavor to cream of asparagus soup!  I do the same with large and too tough okra pods.  I dehydrate them and turn into powder.  It is a natural thickener for soups and stews and adds vitamins as well.

OK - the list goes on and on!!!!!!  Sure, most of these things can be added to compost or can feed the chickens - but I like using them for human consumption too!
Things cost a lot today and it is necessary to use up all we can.
I find it a challenge to come up with ideas to re-make things.

You have any different and new ideas?
I look forward to learning something new!!!!!!!


Sunday, January 22, 2023

Weekly Wrap Up 1/22

 Happy Sunday to all.   I hope this finds you all well and safe.  
Winter seems to have come to my town!  The week started out pretty warm and decent - this morning it is snowing.  I don't think it will be a lot - but it is white!  The weather this week looks to me normal winter temperatures - no warm stuff.  Oh well, it was bound to happen.

The squirrels are nuts!  I have seen more squirrels in my yard and the neighbors this week, than I have ever seen before.  They are everywhere!!!  They are also quite frisky, if you know what I mean!  LOL
Tons of birds out there - I am trying to cut back on feeding them some - so they are doing a great job cleaning up after the squirrels.  Seeing 3 different types of woodpeckers, and still seeing the occasional robin.

My week was quiet:
  • Of course, I had the family in town on Sunday - much fun.  So quiet once they left.
  • Had my financial guy come for a review on Wednesday - pleasantly pleased considered the market.
  • Been using leftovers and freezing what I can't eat right away.
  • Ran to the library and dropped off, picked up and renewed my library card.
  • Been doing a lot of reading this week.
  • Cleaned out more drawers.
  • While out to library, I did run in WM Marketplace to check cat food supplies.  They had one type canned I have a very hard time finding (that cats love) - so I bought a case of 24.  Got them some treats as well.
  • No other grocery shopping - need nothing
  • General cleaning
  • Eating leftovers, all meals from home
Meals this past week:
Smorgasbord I made for family
Chili and crackers
Ham & cheese sliders and salad
Loaded baked potato - chili, cheese & sour cream
Long grain/wild rice w/broc. added, chicken strips, and fresh veggies
Pork fried rice - used leftovers to make
Mac topped with salsa, smoked sausage and salad
SNACKS - oranges, fresh veggies, Triscuits and cheese, snack mix

How was your week?  Any good deals?  What have you all been doing on these winter days?  This month is such a blah time - it is hard to motivate some days/weeks!  I took this week off for the most part - need to get back to being busy this week.

FRANCES - just a note - please do not stop commenting!  I will check the behind the scenes stuff daily.  Not sure why your comments go there sometimes.  Sorry.
HILOGENE and KIM - if you are reading, please know that you have been on my mind.  I pray for you both every day.  Praying your life is calming a little - I know nothing is normal.  HUGS

I would like to ask for prayers please.  My adult niece (R) was hit by a car on Monday evening (as a pedestrian).  She was not expected to make it through the night - miraculously she did.  She has endured back surgery, 2 leg surgery's, she has a tube to reduce swelling on the brain, and a breathing tube.  Sadly, this is the 2nd time she has been hit in 2 years.  She only a few months ago got out of a nursing home.
Her life has been tragic and sad (due to bad decisions).  She has 2 adult daughters, and they were both there this week (another miracle).  They have all been estranged for years.  She is now not doing as well, and they believe breathing tube will be changed to trach, and brain activity is minimal.  I don't know how many more miracles we can expect - it doesn't look good for her.  I know God's Will be done.
I ask you pray for her, but especially her daughters, her mom and sisters for peace and comfort.  Also, for the person that hit her (it was an accident).  I cannot imagine what they are feeling.  Thank you.  This is such a sad situation.

Wishing you all a safe and healthy week.  Blessings from my humble little home to you and yours.
God bless you all.

He will shield you with His wings.  He will shelter you with His feathers.  His faithful promises are your armor and protection.  Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night, nor fear the dangers of the day.
Psalm 91:4-5

Lord, please help us to put our trust in you.  Whether at home or out - we know we have Your love and You protect us.  The world seems scary, and many have suffered - just help us to face all things with trust and knowing that You are with us.  Shield us, from our own fears.  AMEN

Today's affirmation:

Thursday, January 19, 2023

Super Easy Meal Ideas for Pennies

 We all eat differently and we all like different things.  I have never made meals complicated - even when cooking for two.  G was never real picky, and he didn't care if he had one thing or several - he just liked to eat.  Me too.  If I am full - that is what matters.  

There are many things that can be made for pennies.  We CAN stretch that grocery budget - it just takes a little thought.  Use up what you have and re-invent leftovers in new ways.  No waste.  

We all know the basics:
These are pretty basic.  Soups can be anything.  Whatever you have - put it together with some broth or stock or tomato base - veggies, pastas, rice, meat pieces = SOUP!

Mac n Cheese - add some leftover taco meat, hamburger, tuna, chopped hotdog, sliced smoked sausage, maybe some peas or broccoli - whatever you got.  Add maybe a side of salad or veggie of any sort and you have a filling meal

Pancakes or waffles - serve as is or with a side of meat or eggs.

Biscuits and gravy or toast and gravy.  You can make toast from older buns, bread or even use English muffins or bagels - whatever you have.  Gravy is so inexpensive and easy to make

Cabbage or kraut and sausage or hotdogs.  Maybe add mashed, fried or smashed potato as a side.  Super tasty and little cost.  Above is a little baked and smashed potato that is fried.  Mmmmm 

Fried rice or lo-mein.  Throw in all the leftover veggies, bits and bobs of meat and a little seasoning and BOOM you can have a meal in a pan.  So super easy.  A little rice or a little cooked spaghetti (use for lo-mein) - easy - and so very frugal

Burritos are so easy and use up any leftovers or you can make breakfast ones as well.  Makes for a great meal.  Top with veggies, eat plain, or top with sauce
Same type of tortilla used as a roll-up.  A little fresh veg, maybe leftover meat, cheese and some dressing.  Roll it and eat it.  Less calories than a sandwich with bread.  Tortillas can be purchased pretty darn cheaply or you can make your own for just pennies.  They are so super easy to make!

Baked potatoes - top with just butter or use whatever you have.  Top with leftover stew, chili, cheese, taco meat, sour cream or dip, a little ranch dressing, cheesy veggies - you name it.  There is no limit to the toppings.  I can make a nice baked potato with toppings and maybe a side salad and I am more than full.

Spaghetti - some pasta (use what you have) and sauce.  Can add meat or not.  Can top with cheese or not.  Can add garden veggies.  Such an easy and versatile meal.

Tuna patties - use tuna instead of salmon.  I can of tuna will make one large patty or 2 smaller ones.  I add cracker, breadcrumbs, or crushed chips of any sort for a binder with an egg.  Fry.  Above is a sandwich made with the tuna patty and served with leftover corn & Brussel sprouts - sauteed together.

Goulash - in my area - that is macaroni, ground beef, tomato sauce and a little cheese.  I know different regions of the country call other things goulash.
Throw in some cut up bell peppers and use rice instead of pasta, and you have unstuffed pepper skillet!!!!!!

A bowl of rice or pasta - with any assortment of leftover veggies or meat or gravy or sauces on top.  

Homemade pizza - a favorite for me.  You can make a traditional pizza, use - tortillas, English muffins, French bread, hamburger or hotdog buns, whatever you have on hand.  Add a little sauce (spaghetti sauce is fine) or add some salsa - whatever.  Top with just veggies or just meat or combo.  Add anything your heart may desire.  Any type of cheese.  I make up French bread pizza (now a fav) and - this will make at least 4 meals - if not more (with added side salad).  I bake, cut and freeze leftovers for quick meals later.  
I get the bread when it is on clearance for $1 or less a loaf and use whatever I have in my frig.  It really is a cheap meal.  So easy.  There are NO rules.

Maybe this will give someone and idea or two for something different to make.  Meals do NOT need to be complicated - they need to fill you and nourish you.  They do not need to cost hardly any money.  There are so many ways to stretch those food budgets.  You can make these meals for one or more.
Use what you have - you will be amazed at how many choices you can have and how little money you will spend.

Surround yourself with people who are good for your spirit

Wednesday, January 18, 2023

(My) Pantry Staples - What say you?

 Good day everyone!  Hope this finds you well.  Today I am going to talk a little about things that are just staple products I keep in my pantry (freezer).  I like to be prepared for about anything.  I want to be able to throw a meal together for company.  Give me a couple days to thaw things - and I can fix about anything to feed a crowd.
I like the security having what I need on hand.  IF I run out of something - I like having other things that I can use in place of them.  Knowing and using substitutions is a way of life for me.
Recipes?  LOL - maybe for baking - but for most things, I just THROW things together.  When people ask for recipes - I sometimes chuckle and say "what is this recipe thing you speak of"?
I eat and keep what I like - WE ALL SHOULD.  No need to keep supplies that no one in your house doesn't like.  That is wasteful.  
Use what you have.  Shop home first - know what you have - then go shopping if necessary.  
Make things stretch - use leftovers in new ways.
Do NOT waste.

  • Dried beans, peas and all sorts of legumes - I keep canned as well - but dried last for ages.  They can be fixed for so many things
  • Rice - I use rice a lot.  I use as a side, in soups and in casseroles.  Hubs used to love it for breakfast (with sugar and butter).  Many, many uses.
  • Flour, sugar and baking goods - just many uses.  Not just for sweets and baking.  Flour is used for a thickener, sugar (or subs) can be used in daily things as well as baking (drinks and flavor).  It is nice knowing that you can make sweets, or biscuits (scones), bread, tortillas - whatever you need
  • Tomato products - this has to be one of the most used items in my pantry.  I use tomato paste, sauce and all sorts of tomato products A LOT!  Many uses
  • Yeast - always in my freezer - just in case I want to make bread
  • Peanut butter - such a great protein and pretty darn inexpensive.  There are many types of nut butters - they are good for eating and for add-ins.
  • Pasta - I have a ton of pasta on hand at all times.  All types and sizes and varieties.  It is such a basic ingredient and can be used in so many ways.  A great extender for meals - stretch that meal for pennies!!!!!!
  • Eggs - yes, I will always keep eggs.  I know prices have gone up - but I still see them as a very affordable pure protein.  Do a cost analysis - even if you are paying .50 an egg - it is still a cheap protein.  I have never understood how they were so cheap before (people need to make a living).  If you raise chickens great.  Not something I will ever do.  I also keep egg replacers (dry product) on the shelves - they are great to use when baking

You can also freeze when you get a deal or have a surplus.
  • Potatoes - a basic at my house.  I love fresh - baked potatoes.  Can be covered with anything and a meal is had.  I keep home canned (my brother does these) and store canned as well.  I also have dehydrated potatoes on hand.  It is nice to have a variety.  Another cheap and great extender for a meal.
  • Dehydrated onion and garlic - great for flavoring - love having shelf stable on hand at any time.  Lasts forever.  I keep fresh as well - and I also freeze as well.  Onion and garlic powder is a staple at my house
  • *I need to add cheese as well.  I am a cheese fanatic.  I keep dry cheese (powdered) and a variety of hard cheese.  It can sure change up a dish.*
  • Frozen veggies - all sorts.  Yes some things I like fresh and some I get canned or can myself - but nice to have a variety on hand.  I don't grow everything that I like
  • Broth, stock or bouillon - super necessary in my book!  I use for all sorts of things.  All types and flavors
  • Canned meats - I don't can meat myself (still scares me) - but I keep a nice assortment store bought on hand.  Beef, pork, ham, chicken and fishes and even Spam.  I will have meat even if the freezer doesn't.
  • Honey and molasses - can be used in so many ways.  Honey is essential to me for hot teas and toddies when feeling bad - I truly see honey as medicinal.  Molasses goes with sugar to make brown sugar.
  • Powdered milk - just makes sense.  Maybe fresh is not available - I can have milk at any time for drinking, cooking or baking.  I keep evaporated milk as well - it can be watered down for daily use
  • Spices - important to just jazz life up a little!!!!!!  Foods would get boring if they were bland all the time.  Add a little spice to your life!
  • Tortillas - can make or buy.  They last well on the shelf or freeze.  Not just for use as roll-up, but can sub as a snack food, bread or cracker.  Use as they are or crisp them up.  Very versatile and cheap!
  • Oats - not something I eat regularly. But I keep for baking, for an extender (meatloaf or meatballs), or can be ground into flour.  If I were hungry - you betcha I could eat them (jazzed a little)
  • Chocolate or cocoa.  I am not a chocoholic - so it isn't something I need or eat a lot.  I do keep on hand for baking and for flavoring.
  • Oils - whatever type you prefer.  I keep an assortment for daily use.
  • Pet food - this is a pantry staple for me.  Dry and wet food for the babes  
I also have water.  Jugs I fill myself for washing or flushing - plus I keep rain barrels in the warmer months.  I do refill my own bottles with tap for drinking.  It is important to rotate.  I have a filter as well.

These are my most basic needs.  With these items I can make about anything I could possibly want.  I will not go hungry.
Add things each time you go shopping.  You don't have to go crazy - just keep a little extra of everything.  Check you supplies before going out - IF you are down to 2 - figure you need to add more.  You don't want to run out.  That can change plans and it can cost extra money.

What other BASICS are important in your home?  
Look forward to hearing your needs.  It is always fun to be reminded or learn new things.

A stocked pantry makes for a happy life!

Times will get tough - we can be tougher!  Never give up!

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Sunday Funday & Entertaining from the Pantry

 Just wanted to update you a little on the Sunday celebration get together.  I maybe just want to brag a little about my sweet family - yes, I do!  They are just the best.  We had such a great day together.  Laughter, stories, sharing, and just loving each other.  
After I brag for moment, then I will go on and tell you the menu and how I made a pretty good spread for all from what I had on hand!

I hope you can read this.  Click on the pic to enlarge.  I LOVE THIS!  They sure know how to make this gal feel loved.
Another sweet gift.  I just love my family so much.  I think maybe they like me a little!
My nephew made this vase/goblet by hand for me.  It started as a solid piece of mahogany, and he whittled and turned it on his lathe into this beautiful piece.  The picture does not do it justice.  It is gorgeous.

My little gr. gr nephew (he's 4) had an absolute ball watching the squirrels and birds.  We watched together from the bedroom window, and we went outside and watched.  He thought it was great that there were so many squirrels.  The laughter and the smiles - what a wonderful gift.

By the way - my niece was overwhelmed with her toothpick holder and her mom's little hankie, that were added to her gift bag.  She said she needed nothing else all year.  Her brother (who made the vase above) is going to make a frame for her, so she can frame the hankie.  That little hankie is about 75 years old.

Now the menu!
I made a big batch of very meaty chili.  I had everything I needed for that on hand.
We had sliced ham and cheese variety and summer sausage (from my stock).  Many types of crackers - saltines, Triscuits, Cheese-its, and oyster crackers.  Pickles, olives, sliced cukes, sugar pea pods and cherry tomatoes.
I only bought slider buns and cherry tomatoes.  The pea pods I found that same day on clearance.
I made tea, had fruit juice, milk, and cold water on hand.  I made bags of ice over the week.
We had the snack mix, brownies and cookies for sweets.  There was also a bowl of clearance snack-bite candy bars I had purchased after Halloween.  

Basically, my outlay of funds was probably around $5 or $6.  Everyone ate and ate - and I have leftovers for my week and for the freezer.  You sure can't beat that.
I love having my freezer and pantry to help me in any given situation.  It is nice to know that a good and tasty meal can be put together with what is on hand.
I could have done any number of items - but chose this.

Keep working those pantries and freezers.  Get those clearance and mark-downs.  They sure come in handy - not just for company but for daily eating.
Have a wonderful Tuesday!!!!!!!

Never stop learning and seeing opportunities

Sunday, January 15, 2023

Weekly Wrap Up 1/15

 Happy Sunday to all.  My goodness, we are halfway through this month already!  Gaining more daylight each day - which is a good thing.  It won't be long before we will be talking flowers and gardens!!!!!

We had some warmer temps this week and on Thursday, we actually had thunderstorms!  Friday - well, that was a different story.  We had much cooler temps and snow showers!  This AM it is in the 20's.  Just wait a little while and the weather will change drastically!!!  We had the terrible cold around Christmas, but other than that, so far this winter, my area has been decent.  I wish all could say that.  There has been so much snow and rain everywhere.
People all over - coast to coast and even overseas have had drought for ages, now the rains are flowing like crazy.  Sure makes you think of that old saying "be careful what you wish for".

Birds and squirrels have all been active.  I have about a dozen squirrels a lot of the time.  I looked out the other day and there were 14 doves sitting on the fence!  Blue jays and woodpeckers complete to get the peanuts in the birdfeeder!  Cardinals, finches, sparrows and the occasional robin showing up.  Sure do enjoy watching them all.

This week:
  • Cut up a cuke and put in some leftover pickle juice - gave it a great flavor
  • Got the kids gift bags all put together.  Had everything, just had put off bagging up their stuff
  • Cleaned and never ends
  • Made up a huge pan of snack mix.  Just used what I had on hand - cinnamon crunch cereal, pretzels, M & M's, assorted nuts & peanuts - white chocolate and milk chocolate (tasty!)
  • Gave myself a nice spa night
  • Baked - cookies and brownies for company
  • Ran to store to get buns and a few fresh veggies.  Have everything else I need to feed all today.  Made chili, ham and cheeses for sandwiches, snacks, chips and crackers, tea, ice.
  • Just putzing around the house all week - doing odds and ends
Meals this week:
Pork fritter sandwich and salad
Smoked sausage and fried cabbage
Turkey (freezer), rice and veggies
Beef and bean nachos
Chicken strips, Zatarain's beans & rice, fresh vegs
Burritos using leftover beans & rice
Progresso ham & potato soup (busy day)

How was your week?  Did you get any deals?  Doing any pre-spring cleaning?  Crafting?  Love hearing from each of you.

I have family coming in today for a holiday get together.  One nephew and his wife won't be here, he has the flu, sadly.  Looking forward to seeing all.
I am wishing you all a wonderful day and week ahead.  May you all be safe and healthy.
Blessing from my humble little home to you and yours.

Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul.
3 John 1:2

Lord, we ask Your blessings upon each of us. Please keep everyone is your safe and loving hands and may all be protected in every way.  We look to You for guidance and strength in all we do.

We are alive for a reason.  May we each honor that every day!

Thursday, January 12, 2023

The Random Thoughts in my Head!

We have had some deep conversations this week.  Today I will keep things light.  I thought I would let you know the randomness of my brain!!!!!  Oh some days my brain just flits here and there and everywhere!! 
So here we go.
Looked out the other morning and saw 'big bird' sitting in my tree.  The hawk was HUGE!  It was about 2' tall and the wingspan was tremendous when it took off.  Notice to the left - the squirrel watching it!  There were several squirrels flitting up and down the tree - and the hawk didn't care. It was waiting for birds (who were hiding in the bushes).
Notice the spot to the left of the bird where the large branches converge.  See that little poof of white?  That is a piece of batting from my lawn cushion!!!!!!  Yep, it was an old one and left outside and the squirrels tore it apart and drug a piece about 12 x 12 up the tree for its nest!  That was quite a sight to see!  Crazy buggers.

Been meaning to show you one of the things I got for Christmas.  My nephew got this for me.  
I don't think I showed this - maybe I did.  I go downstairs every day to check my freezer - so this is going to be a huge help.  I just love getting practical gifts!  My basement steps are kind of steep - so it is nice knowing I don't have to go down and check things every day.  Much safer for me - now I just need to get in the habit of not going down!!!!!!

These 2 celebrated their 61st wedding anniversary on this past Sunday.  My brother and sister-in-law.  They graduated together in 1959 - but didn't date in school.  They were just friends.  They married when I was 7.  Funny story, I did not like her at all!!!!!!  She married my brother and I WAS going to marry him!!!!!!!  LOL!  How dare her?
Needless to say, over the years we have grown close and I like her pretty good now!  Hehe

This morning we are having thunderstorms here.  Just crazy to say that in the middle of January.  It is going to drop in temperature today and be pretty chilly tomorrow - just crazy weather.

I am getting ready to go in a cut out a batch of Springerle cookies!  Yes, I am doing my holiday baking now.  The kids are coming in town Sunday for our holiday celebration.  The nephews always look so forward to getting their Springerle cookies.  It is a staple - if they get nothing else, they would be happy - just cookies!  Grandma made them for the boys and now I do.
I have all things on hand for all our munching and eating pleasure on Sunday.  All I need to get is some buns.

I give gift bags with 'food' of all sorts to each of them.  They look forward to that.  Things that are different and just plain fun.  This year my niece gets a little something that some might consider silly in hers.  Years and years ago I painted a few toothpick holders in the crafting I did.  My sis (their mom) got one and I had one - both just alike.
After sis passed (30 years ago next month), no one knew where hers went.  Every time Ang sees mine - she comments, "Mom had one of those sitting on the counter all the time"!  Well, this year - she gets mine.  I also ran across a little hankie that was my sister's and she will get that as well.  It is so sweet - The Three Bears - on it.
Sis was 10 1/2 years older than me - so the little hankie is old.  Ang will cry!!!  I just know it.
                                 Sometimes it is the silly little things that mean a lot to others.

Well, there you have SOME of my random thoughts this morning.  What a mish mash!!!!  
Hoping you all have a great day.  Do what makes you happy and smile and maybe even laugh a little!
Keep it simple.  Have a blessed day.

Be the person you want them to remember!

Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Life is Good - it really is

 There are times in our lives that we just can't figure out why things are happening.  
When bad things happen - we feel like we are being punished.  We feel like we are falling apart.  We feel like we can't go on.  Well, we AREN'T being punished.  Things do HAPPEN beyond our control.  We WILL go on.
Easy?????  NOPE - not at all.  But we go on and we learn and do and maybe even thrive.  We are here for a very specific reason - our work is not done.

THIS is what we all need to remember.  No matter what happens in life - we are blessed!
Numbers 1, 2 and 5 are things that are soooooo taken for granted.  We are blessed to have these things, as many in the world do not.

One other thing we come to realize as we heal and grow - is that we have had our WORST day ever at some point - yet here we are.  Will there be another 'worst' day?  Maybe.  But for now, we have had it and we are surviving.
Life throws us so many challenges and roadblocks.  I am sure you are like me - and have stumbled and fallen many times along the journey.  
Slowly we get back up and try again.  There is no failure, as long as you are trying.  I truly believe that.

All aspects of life can bring setbacks.  We learn and we move forward, as hard as it may be.  That is our responsibility as a citizen of this earth.  Do good and leave a mark on the world.  Love others, be kind, and be a good steward and grow.
Take baby steps.  There is no big hurry.  I love the old adage - slow and steady wins the race.

This is the way with everything.

May you each have a blessed day and know that you are loved and cared for.  
This is just a little reminder to each of us to smile and TRY to be happy.  HUGS


Don't feel the need to be perfect - no one on this earth is!

Tuesday, January 10, 2023

Paper, Plastic or Re-usable

 Over the years, we have talked about this before.  What do you use?  Paper, plastic or re-usable bags when shopping.  
More and more places have changed laws so that plastic cannot be used.  I very seldom see paper bags at stores anymore.
Our state has banned the banning of plastic!!!!!  Yep, you read that right.

Plastic pollution is a huge problem.  I recently read an article in our paper that stated that around the world as many as 5 trillion plastic bags are used each year.  That is over 700 per year per person!!!!  That is absolutely crazy.  The worst part - they said the average plastic bag is used for about 12 minutes, on average!!!!
They did a survey on several stores all over my city, and those using plastic was about 97%!!!  They saw no one using paper and only about 3% bringing their own bags - most of those were at places like Trader Joes and Fresh Thyme.

I have watched a couple You Tubers who talk about being more mindful of watching their plastic use.  They buy in bulk and re-use as many containers as possible - they use a lot of glass, and take their own bags.  They show their grocery buys to tell of their savings - and I cringe!!!!!!  
There upon their counters and tables - just about everything purchased is in plastic!!!!!  Fresh produce, frozen veggies and fruit, meat packaging, containers of coffee creamer.............
I know that we all have to start somewhere, but my goodness, plastic is abundant in all we buy and do.

Animal feed bags can be turned into re-usable grocery bags.  These can be so pretty - as many feed bags are artfully decorated.
An old t-shirt turned into a storage bag.  This one was a larger size shirt - sewed at bottom, and sleeves and neck cut.  I use this one for storing cleaning rags.  Smaller shirts could be made into grocery bags.  They are very strong.

I guess, I start thinking about these kinds of things as each new year starts.  What can I do?
I keep re-usable bags in my car 100% of the time - yet I often don't THINK to take them in with me.  I got out of the habit, when stores went through a period of time that you could not bring your own in because of C19.  I truly thought that was stupid.  No re-usable bags, plastic shields between workers and customers - yet each one of us literally touched every single thing I bought, as did the bagger.  Yep, that made no sense to me.  But that is just my opinion - and I am getting off on a tangent.

So any way I got out of the habit of taking them in - I really need to get back to it.  Buying in bulk can help a lot as well.  If it is something you will use over the year - buy the biggest size and refill your own containers.  That saves a few bottles from going in the landfill.  

Lots of people use recycling services and turn in their plastic bags at the grocery bins.  Sounds good in theory.  I have known some people who work in these places and for these places - and tons of it DOESN'T go to re-cycling centers!  It just goes in the trash and landfills.  SAD.

This is my daily mug for drinks around the house.  I am constantly drinking water or tea - this is what I use.  I have been using this insulated mug for way over a decade!!!  I don't think they even make these anymore!
I use these for other things.  They were both gifted to me and are insulated.  The pink one is my 'wine' glass for warm summer evening on the front porch!  The taller one is my 'to go' glass.  I take my water or tea with me.  Keeps things cold, and no spillage.
I have handmade ceramic glasses and cups and glass glasses for company.

I just think that we all need to make an effort this year to really SLOW down the use of plastic.  Buy in glass when you can, re-use any containers possible, make your own produce bags (use mesh or lace), take our own bags, and just be very diligent about watching what we buy.
Plastic is everywhere!  On everything!  If buying frozen items - maybe think about getting those items that are in boxes not bags.  At least the boxes will breakdown over time.
Sadly all meat purchased at the grocery is not only wrapped in plastic but on Styrofoam as well (it never breaks down).  Maybe find a butcher who uses butcher paper!?

I don't have many answers, sadly.  I wish I did.  We are really messing up the planet.  Waste gets in the oceans and hurts our environment (the fish and wildlife).  Our roads are littered and unsightly and again, we are endangering the wildlife.

I went out yesterday morning and walked the alley behind my house - what a mess.  Today is trash day - and people set things out early - so pickers come by and go through things.  That is fine - but they make messes and don't clean them up.  People overload containers and then the wind blows, and junk blows everywhere.  I went out and cleaned it all up - walked the front as well.  Trash falls out of cars when doors are opened, and well guess what?  Lazy arses can't bend over and pick it up!!!!!!!  Grrrrr
I take pride in my neighborhood and just want it clean.  I guess not everyone does.

I do ramble on.  There is not a 'huge' amount we can each do - but there is a little we can each do.  IF everyone did a little that would be a LOT!!!!!!!!!  Be mindful this year of what you buy.  Be mindful of how you re-use things.  Be mindful of your trach and recycle.

Do you guys have any good ideas for lessening our plastic use.  New ideas for recycling things?  I am always wanting to learn new ways to help this world we live in.


Release anything that does not serve you!

Sunday, January 8, 2023

Weekly Wrap-Up 1/8

 Happy Sunday all.  One week of the month and year down!  Amazing.  Hope you are all well.
The first part of our week here was nice and warm - shoot we got to 60* one day.  Funny thing about that, it seemed the warmer it got, the colder I got!!!  Not sure what was going on with that!
Got back to seasonal temps by the end of the week.  It is still much, much better than the artic blast we had at Christmas.  It looks like the next couple weeks will be decent as well.  I will be happy to take that!

                                                         Good morning!!!!!!! (not my pic)

It seems that the daylight hours have increased - on both ends of the day!  Light earlier and light later.  I really like that.  The more daylight the better for me.  It is generally a cloudy month - so at least being light longer helps.  We did have a lovely sunny day yesterday.
I got a real surprise this week.  We have NO robins in the area over winter.  I know some places (even close to me) do - but not here.  They generally show up in March.
I have been seeing robins for the last 3 days!!!!!!!  Started out seeing two - then eight - then six!    I don't know if they are lost or just traveling through or staying!!!  I will look at this as a good thing.  
I will take it as a sign!!!!!!!!
It sure was a joyful thing to see!

This week:
  • I cooked a small, corned beef brisket in the crock pot.  I ate 3 meals and froze enough for 2 more
  • All holiday put away
  • Made a gallon of Kool-Aid and drank it all
  • Cut my hair and touched up roots a little
  • Laundry in cold and hung everything to dry.  I use the dryer to fluff only
  • Working on dusting and cleaning the floor to ceiling knick-knack wall - UGH
  • Painted the trim on windows and doors in the kitchen
  • One thing leads to another - and painted trim and interior doors in hallway, living room and dining room - it hadn't been painted in years (I will tell a story this week about this).  It all looks so fresh and clean - took a couple days - but it is nice! (I have had the paint for ages)
  • Scoured bath from top to bottom
  • Did not leave the property this week - no grocery
  • Refilled the feed bins for squirrels and birds with supplies on hand
  • Meals from home 

Meals this week:
My NY day normal - Corned beef, cabbage and black-eyed peas
Cheeseburger and black-eyed peas w/salsa and peppers added
Corned beef hash
French bread pizza (from freezer)
Fried tuna patty sandwich and salad
Stuffed mushroom (from freezer), scrambled eggs and toasted bagel

What have you been up to this week?  Are you still enjoying Christmas decorations, or have you put it all away?  New year cleaning?  I am just in the mood to freshen things up - make a fresh new start.  Did you get any deals this week?
Love hearing from you all and seeing what everyone is up to.
Love that we have had some new people adding to conversations!  All are welcome. 

I hope you all have a wonderful, safe and healthy week.
Blessings to you and yours from me and my humble little home.

Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry, for man's anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.
James 1:19-20

Dear Lord we need your help - each of us.  Help us to be better listeners, to carefully choose our words, and to hold our tempers.  It is often quite difficult in this day, even though we know it brings great benefits, as anger does not serve us.
Please be with us, even when hurting or upset to glorify You in all we do.  We can do all in Your Spirit and power.  Fill us each one with love and hope to touch the world with joy.

Be patient, as change takes time

Thursday, January 5, 2023

Bowls - and Other Food Stretching Ideas!

Food dollars do not go as far today as they did - even a few months ago.  Prices keep going up, and it is OUR job to figure out a way to stretch those dollars in new ways.

We all know that using leftovers and bits and bobs of things in soups and casseroles helps stretch the food and wastes nothing.  It is nice to use things up in a new way - no one gets bored, and no one can say "I don't eat leftovers!"  Fix things leftover in a new way - sometimes you have to be a bit deviant!!!  LOL

Now for me - I love to make stir fry meals - a great way to use odds and ends.  Serve over rice or pasta or whatever you want.
I love making fried rice as well.  It gives everything a new and fresh taste.  It always seems like a comfort food to me.

BOWLS have become a favorite for me.  A whole meal all in one bowl.  It uses up leftovers and creates a new and delicious taste.
Here is a little formula to use when making a food bowl.  This is for one - so use this for each bowl made.  Now you can do your own thing - no set rules.

1/2 C cooked grain - rice, pasta, quinoa, etc.
3 oz. cooked protein - chicken, pork, beef, shrimp, tofu, etc.
1/2 C cooked veggies - chopped carrots, broccoli, mixed vegs, tomatoes, peppers, etc.
1 - 2 Tbsp. dressing or sauce - soy, BBQ, salsa, vinaigrette, etc.

I love making bowls with leftover chicken (I make them like KFC bowls).  I use leftover taco meat/beans to make a Mexican version - that is a favorite.  Of course it is - you all know my favorite type of food is Mexican!!!
I even purposely make bowls - not leftovers!  The KFC one is so good.  I use mashed potatoes, corn on top, then gravy and topped with pieces of chicken tenders or breast meat.  Oh YUM is all I can say!!!

Now I know some people do NOT want their food touching!  I know for a fact - I have relatives that are this way.  Me - not so much!  LOL!!  It all goes down the same way to the same place - so I am not picky.  If you are of the ilk that food cannot touch - then a bowl probably isn't for you.

You can make bowls for breaks, lunch or dinner.
A fruity bowl - any type of fruit - fresh or canned or cooked, over rice, oats, quinoa.  Maybe throw in some nuts and you have a very healthy meal
You can put an egg and veggies over rice, oats, quinoa, pasta.  You can even use some hash browns on the bottom.  Add meat if you want or any type of gravy.
There is absolutely no limit to what can be had.
I don't eat breakfast - but I would do these for lunch or dinner, myself.

A complete and balanced meal can be had in this way.  You can add any meat or tofu, any type of veggie - cooked a fresh - any type of gravy or sauce - all over rice, pasta, potatoes, etc.
There truly is NO limit to varieties!  
Here is one with leftover taco meat, sauteed zucchini, a few tomatoes all served over rice.  It was so good.
Chicken pieces, a handful of peppers and mushrooms with a little soy served over a smashed potato.  Wasn't in a bowl - but the same premise!  This was so tasty and comforting.

Folks, there is no limit to what we can do with our food.  Get smart and do NOT waste a thing.  If you throw away food, you are quite simply throwing away money!  Would you just throw dollar bills out the door?  I think not.  Use it up - has never been more important.

Get creative.  Have fun.  Experiment.  It is all good.
Despite what mom said - it is OK to PLAY WITH YOUR FOOD!!!!!!!!!!

Today I choose to be positive, despite the hurdles!