Monday, October 26, 2020

Empty Nest Menu #62

I am adding some comfort-style foods into the menus this week while still trying to use as many veggies as possible.  The Girl was going to be visiting, but then sprained her ankle, and now I am comfort eating.  Don't judge!

Monday - Chicken with gravy and biscuits, green beans
Tuesday - Mexican Tilapia, sauteed brussels sprouts, small twice baked potato
Wednesday - Pork Chop, Hash Brown Casserole (freeze half), turnip greens
Thursday - Slow Cooker Steak Soup, Mexican cornbread
Friday - Taco Night, seasoned pintos {off - going to Brenham for the day}
Saturday - Dinner is charcuterie from here {its Scout's birthday but I know we won't see him*, so we might as well go to Highlands}
Sunday - Creamy Cilantro Lime Chicken, rice, broccoli/cauliflower


Gina

*I'm sure I will vent about that on the other blog.

Friday, October 23, 2020

How yesterday went

On Wednesday evening Hubby informed me that Bubbie had "sprained his wrist".  It was hurting, bruised, and very swollen.  Nope that doesn't sound right.  {Incidentally, he had fallen off his skateboard about 10 minutes after we had hung up about a completely different problem he was having with buying groceries after paying a huge utility bill.}
Some idiot helpful person at our insurance company told us that not only could he not go to the student health center on campus, because of our insurance, which of course was false, but then sent us a referral list of Internal Medicine and Cardiology docs for him to call to make an appointment.  For a wrist injury.  Again, nope.
After I called him the next morning and learned that his wrist was hurting more, I drove down to San Marcos, scooped him up, and took him to the hospital ER in Kyle.  Six x-rays later we got the expected answer: fractured bone in his wrist.  I'm not really complaining - it was less than a 3 hour ER visit and he is splinted now, with instructions to follow up with a great hand and wrist doc who regularly works at the hospital I work at.  So its all good.  And I know its only a small hiccup in life.  But it seemed bigger to me as I drove home to Austin, so many a tear was shed.  I can keep my composure and perspective with Bubbie, but I still feel for him.
Hopefully today will be better than yesterday.


Gina

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Weekend re-cap: STW, Fiesta, Highlands, Perissos

 It was a laid-back weekend for sure - no big projects at Highlands! - but still a lot of driving for Hubby.  We were up reasonably early on Saturday so we headed to a favorite Mexican restaurant for breakfast.  After putseying around Highlands a bit, we headed to Save the World in Marble Falls.
We enjoyed a beer they brew with the grape skins from harvest at one of our favorite wineries.  We met a couple of colorful characters that kept us entertained for a while, including the chef of the food truck who treated Hubby to some chili cheese nachos, and an older gentleman who shared our table and admired our beer glass decals.
Then we headed to Fiesta in Lometa to listen to some rocking harp music (wait, what?) and help them celebrate their 10 year winery anniversary. 
{in Lampasas we saw these cool 50's cars!} 
I'm pretty sure that those nachos did not count as lunch so we enjoyed some cream cheese with raspberry chipotle sauce along with our gold medal winning 2018 Sangiovese.  We chatted with the owner, listened to music, and headed home shortly before sunset.  Both of us were worn out and while we know it wasn't a great idea, we had a cheeseburger for dinner and split some onion rings.  Free choice Saturdays - yes, please.
The next morning I parked myself in the yard with my coffee while Hubby made Mountain Man in the Dutch oven.
The morning views were sweet.
The only critters I saw was one lone female deer, and someone's black cat who regularly visits the top of our hill.  All was quiet and very peaceful.
Mountain Man is ground pork sausage, hashbrowns, cheddar cheese, and eggs.  There was enough leftover to take home for dinner.  I think I rather like the theme of Hubby cooking!  After breakfast we hung some tiny white lights under the barn roof (will have to take those pics soon), and did some laying around in chairs until around 2 p.m. then showered and headed to Perissos for the wine club pick-up.
The food (BBQ Pulled Pork sammies, potato salad, beans, and cookies) and music (Spicy Loops) were delightful, not to mention all of the wine we sampled and a 2017 Racker's Blend as we sat amongst the vines.  What a gorgeous afternoon!
We have never had a bad experience at this winery and the pick-up parties are fabulous!  They have the whole process down to an art from the time you check in, to each station in the "sip and stroll", to the final pick up of your wines.  Some of the other wineries we have been members of have the most chaotic and disappointing parties and that was a pivotal point in our deciding to drop them.  The wine has to be great, but so does the experience!  We headed back to Highlands for the afternoon and left for Austin just after sunset.  And *BLINK*,  the weekend ended...


Gina

Monday, October 19, 2020

Empty Nest Menu #61

Monday - Honey Dijon Chicken Bites, baked sweet potato, garlic toast
Tuesday - Tilapia (seasoned and baked), skillet potatoes, chard
Wednesday - Taco Bean Soup, corn muffins
Thursday - Pork and Eggplant Skillet, seasoned corn
Friday - Ba$tard BBQ, butternut squash, peas {on call tonight only}
Saturday - Free Choice!
Sunday - Scallop Stir Fry with green beans and lo mein (we never had this a few weeks ago)
Dessert this week is mini Eskimo pies, just because...


Gina

Friday, October 16, 2020

Five thing Friday - reading, meal prep, shopping, chairs, empty fridge

I bought this book by the author of the Hyperbole and a Half book and blog both because I need something to read AND I thought it would be super funny and entertaining like the first book.
It is funny - in places - but it is also incredibly sad.  The author seems like a genuinely likeable person who had a hell of some rough time while she was on hiatus from her blog.  You know, when bad things are happening to someone, its hard to hear about them allatonce instead of in little bits here and there - its somehow magnified.  I've been reading it a little here and there.  I could sure some book suggestions!
I made these "tuna bowls" for us one night this week and they came out surprisingly good!  I used a leftover tomato/avocado/green onion salad from chicken taco night, a can of cannellini beans, a can of skipjack tuna in oil, and some feta.  I sprinkled a little Italian seasoning over the beans and freshly ground black pepper over the whole thing.  It only took 5 minutes to prep.
Imperfect Foods sends me some very marginal carrots, not just because they are weirdly shaped, but also because they seem very limp.  I cook them anyway and they taste great, but I think I am growing weary of this.  I really don't mind grocery shopping since I have been going on Thursday nights after work.  Its not crowded so I can zoom through the aisles and I usually have an organized list.
I am still working on the chair project.  I am taking my time because I don't want to rush through something I want to end up looking great.  I frequently get in over my head with projects like this, thinking they will be so easy and it turns out that they aren't.  Each chair had to have the seat removed, two layers of cloth and some quilt batting and staples removed, the seats sanded and painted, the rubber feet pried off, the metal scrubbed and sanded, then several coats of paint will dry before I screw the seats back on and replace the rubber feet.  I do it in spurts and it is taking foreverrrr. 
I don't know how I can spend $100 a week on food and supplies, and the fridge look like this.  Its all condiments!  It makes me miss my peeps even more.  Remember storing three gallons of milk, mom?
It looks like Hubby and I aren't fending for ourselves, but we are!  I am cooking dinner every day, packing lunches for us, and there is always something in there for breakfast.  The freezer looks a little better, but it feels like we have a fridge that's too big for two people, overall.  I'm sure I will change my tune over the holidays when I am cramming all of the Thanksgiving stuff in there.
Sometimes it feels sad to be an Empty Nester...


Gina 

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

This is not a furniture makeover...

...its more like a dumpster diving cleaning, repainting, and re-purposing story.  We've been talking about getting a small metal table to use out in the yard at Highlands.  Something we could set our phones and drinks on, since the chaise loungers don't have a spot for setting things.
 As luck would have it, we saw this metal table by the side of the road as we were pulling out of a restaurant.  I made Hubby circle around and pick it up!
It was rusted and banged up and looked almost like it had creosote or somesuch caked all over it.  In short, it was a mess. But, redeemable.
After I used a metal brush to "sand" all of the crud off, I gave it a few coats of all the leftover dibs and dabs of black spray paint we had at Highlands.  Don't worry - there was at least one can that had primer built into it.
Its never going to win any prizes, but it cleaned up OK.  
It cost me zero dollars total.
And it will definitely work for its intended purpose. 


Gina 

Monday, October 12, 2020

Empty Nest Menu #60

Monday - Chicken Rio for Tacos with cheese, avocado, tomato {order produce box}
Tuesday - Tuna Salad Bowls with romaine, tomato, green onion, white kidney beans, feta, vinaigrette {pay bills}
Wednesday - Farro and Sausage Skillet with corn, onions, peppers
Thursday - Baked Meatballs, green beans
Friday - Pastor Chicken Thighs, carrots, maybe a twice baked
Saturday - Free Choice {Sol Vinum release at Save The World}
Sunday - Classic Shrimp Rolls, low salt chips {picnic lunch at Perisso's for wine club pick-up}



Gina

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