Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Monday, April 27, 2015

Freezer Clean-out results

So, last week I showed you some tacky photos of my freezer.  I wrote that post in advance, of course.  I had spent a couple of  Wednesdays not buying groceries, instead plowing through the food in there and and here's what we have today:
Angels singing

Here's what I was able to make without going to the store for anything other than perishables:

1 - (freezer) crock pot beans with (freezer)  fajita meat, chopped onion, (freezer) grated cheese
2 - (freezer) taco meat, (freezer) tortillas, taco fixings (incl. more cheese from the freezer)
3 - (freezer) leftover pork loin chops made into Goulash* with potatoes and  green beans, and cresent rolls
4 - (freezer) chicken patty sammies with (freezer) waffle fries (boys go camping)
5 - (freezer) Newman's Own Beef and Broccoli ('cause it was just Scout and I eating)
6 - Take out fried chicken (it was Sunday!)
7 - (freezer) ground beef in Hamburger Helper, salad
8 - (freezer) biscuits with Mountain Mama ( skillet mix of bacon or sausage, leftover potatoes, onion, eggs, cheese)
9 - (freezer) pork fajita meat, stir fried with (freezer) sugar snap pea veggie mix, rice, potstickers
10 - (freezer) Tilapia fish tacos, Spanish rice, avocado, cheese, pico, more (freezer) tortillas
Weekend:  Mom and Dad out on Friday, Dad grill on Saturday, Coney Island Dogs on Sunday (with ingredients from the freezer)
*When I was growing up this was a regular thing:  leftover meat and veg in a pan gravy
******
There's still food in there, but it will get used up this week!  So now we're left with:
A reasonable stash of frozen veggies,
a reasonable collection of meat and freezer meals,
and breakfast items.  There is also a roll of cookie dough,  a jar of chicken broth, a dish of cobbler, a pasta casserole, and a couple of containers of cooked meat that I will add in to something else.  At the end of the week I wiped down the whole thing on the inside.  Sadly, I had to toss things that I knew were freezer burnt.  Things that had been in there too long to salvage.  That's just how the mop flops, I guess.
What I was left with was a kitchen to clean, but what's new?





Friday, April 24, 2015

5 thing Friday - freezer, veggies, lamp, Easter basket, books

This is a good problem to have, I realize.  But it's silly for our freezer to be this full and still go grocery shopping.
I don't even know how it got this full!
 It's a small freezer, but really. 
 Instead of buying groceries last week, I made meals from what was in there already and it worked out great!  More about that next week...
 I love the fresh pre-cut veggies at Trader Joe's.  And butternut squash is my favorite! I need to up my veggie consumption, and squash sauteed with butter and garlic - ohmygoodness.  I added a leftover piece of chicken and it was lunch!
I am working on sprucing up my desk area.  Got me a cute vintage-y looking lamp at Target and a shade at Wal-Mart.  Next stop: JoAnn Fabrics for some new fabric for the chair pad and the liner for the basket under the desk.  Better pics coming, eventually...
Another phone pic, this one of the Easter basket my peeps surprised me with for my first day back at work!  It was full of Russell Stover chocolates, bubble bath, and muscle rub.  Sah-weet!  I'm sure they are all relieved that The Great Knee Incident of 2014 is winding down.
Books from the library.  Considering that the last time I went to the library I had a cane and a kid to lean on, this was another mini victory.  And reading?  You can't beat a good book and your feet up with a cup of tea at the end of the day.  It's been my favorite stress reliever so far.




Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Monday, April 20, 2015

Loving the home I have: the kitchen

My kitchen has a happy mix of color in it that I love.  And I haven't spent much on it lately - instead pulling out things I already had and using them differently.  It's spring, time to clean and freshen!
This collander makes for a pretty pot of silk flowers.  I just dug around in my stash and pulled out the colors I wanted.  I'm thinking about adding a small lamp in here, too.  A small lamp would be so cozy in this little area.
 Bright spatulas were cheap and I use them all the time.And that pretty plate makes a nice spoon rest.
 My owl cannisters don't hold anything - I just like the pop of color.  I spend a lot of time in here, so I make it pretty for me!
This fabric in these baskets is from IKEA, originally being a tablecloth.  I don't think they carry it anymore.  But it has all the colors I love in here.
 Sweet pottery bowl made by one of my resident artists hold my rings near the sink.
 I'm trying to encourage everyone at my house, including myself to eat more fresh veg and fruit!  Maybe making it purty will entice them?
I like having vintage looking touches in here.  I have more things I can pull out and use.  Maybe this week after I play catch up on cleaning!
I  love it when everything is clean and fresh smelling.  I've been using a lavender scented spray cleaner that is so nice!
For a while there, I wanted to paint the cabinets.  But now I think I will just sand them lightly and give them another coat of clear varnish to spiff them and help them clean up easier.  There's oak in the den next to this room.  It all fits.
 
The laminate will get replaced eventually.  It has gotten hard to clean and is scratched.  Just new laminate for me, thanks, nothing fancy.  I think laminate is very practical in a home with kids.  Easy to clean, looks fresh.  Ditto for the white backsplash. 
 If it's not broke, why "fix" it?
About the only other big change to make in here would be new blinds for this window, and maybe a cushion or two.  And I might eventually spray paint the chairs a fun color.  But those are all relatively easy changes I can do.  And if I don't get around to it right away, I will still enjoy this kitchen!





Friday, April 17, 2015

Me versus the shredder

I didn't start out trying to make an unholy mess on my newly mopped floors.  I was only trying to catch up on shredding documents.  I've had a basket of them sitting in the garage for five months.  (I also have a mountain of things to file, but that's gonna happen later this Spring)  My being out of commission means the infrastructure here has suffered...
Exhibit A:  The crappy shredder that LIES because it says it will take up to 12 sheets of paper, but it will not.  It's our second shredder - we kill appliances.  I have a sneaking suspicion that something left this house unshredded and that is why my credit card account got hijacked a couple years ago.  Shredders are a good thing.  Going 100 paperless would be an even better thing, I realize.  But we still have documents and old bills that will need shredding in the future.  So...
 Exhibit B:  The mess created from me taking the darn thing apart and unplugging the paper jam.  Yes, I used a skinny wooden ruler to assist.  Yes, I broke the ruler.  And  plastic fork.  Ditto a plastic knife.
Two more clean-outs and two and half bags later, I had gotten a chunk of paper so wedged in there it wouldn't budge and I knew I was finished shredding indefinitely.  I got the bulk of it done, so after thirty minutes of troubleshooting, I officially gave up.  Rather than give Hubby yet another thing to fix (the leaf blower is higher up on the list of things we need fixed) I think I will set this out on the next Big Trash Day.   I'm the only one keeping up with the files and such anyway.  Executive decision: go quietly to Wal-mart and purchase a new one.






Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Monday, April 13, 2015

Winter sweater storage

It was getting to be so crowded on my main closet rail.  Spending time at home this winter shopping on line had produced an excess of things I need to store during warmer months.  Plus, hanging sweaters tend to get s-t-r-t-c-h-e-d out.  And. I'm gonna need room for Spring stuff, am I right? (:
Here's the main stack - sweaters and flannel shirts.  I added my scarves and gloves to this pile, too, so I could free up a dresser drawer.  Hubby's will have sweaters, scarves and about 6 pairs of gloves!  He thinks if one is good, more is better...
I bought two of those 56 qt storage boxes at Target with a box of lavender scented moths balls.  So this project cost me about $16, but I will have and use those boxes forever.  If you've never tried these little sachets I recommend them - they are pleasantly scented and once they evaporate, there's only a little packet of paper left.  No dust on your clothes at all.  I wiped down the boxes first with a lavender scented cleaner.  Love the smell of lavender!
This closet is a work in progress.  (Can you tell Hubby is in love with hats and caps??) I still need to chunk the old printer out into the garage.  Why it is still living here?  Because up til now I could not carry heavy things out of here.  EVERYONE AT MY HOUSE YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.  Mrs. Clean is back in town!
One for Hubby, one for me.  Eventually, all of the pictures on the shelves will get hung up, too. I want everything off the floor and the shelves available for when we need them.  Baby steps!
I tried free-handing the monograms with a fat sharpie.  Artistic, organized, and now my hanging clothes have room to breathe!





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Friday, April 10, 2015

5 thing Friday - yardwork, E Bunny, changing habits, Spring, these people

Just a few short weeks ago, this is what it looked like in my yard.  I know it isn't the greatest pic but, there is dead and scraggly looking lantana, leaves choking up the grass, weeds and baby trees sprouted in the Wandering Jew bed.  I was ITCHING to get out there and get it whipped into shape.
 
 Fast forward to the last weekend of March and after four hours of yard work, three of us called it quits.  But we manged to rake and scoop 13 bags of leaves and yard waste:
 
 I still have a bunch to do, but it was a great start.
Hubby mowed the rest in.  Just in time, too, cause the next day all of the oaks in the neighborhood went berserk and everything is covered in pollen and those crackly things,  Yuck.  No more leaving the windows open either, cause that pollen settles on everything inside, too.
 Easter sussies for my peeps. Next year I will get a little fancier...
Last slammer meal for a while.  {Oh, how I love them}  I read that losing 1 pound is like losing four pounds of pressure off your knee.  Since the doc and PT advised I keep moving and lose some weight, I set up a basket for my lunch items, similar to what Hubby does. 
He keeps packets of tuna or salmon, canned sardines and oysters, protein drinks, peanut butter, almonds, granola bars, etc.  I will keep these baskets stocked with pantry items we can grab to boost lunches at work.  No more eating in the cafeteria or ordering out.  It's too expensive, too much food, and takes away from time you can sit with feet up at lunchtime.  
Scout has been taking lovely photos lately.  It doesn't hurt that it's spring and there's so much to photograph.  Have I mentioned before I am happy winter is OVER?  Also, did you know that ladybugs bite?  Seriously.  My mother told me that, but not until very recently.  I don't think I've every had that happen to me and I caught dozens of them as a child.
I ordered a magnet for my locker at work of this happy couple.  
Right before all heck broke loose last Fall.  We need to get busy planning what to do for our 30th.





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