Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Early Spring Break


I'm taking a week
 or so off to visit
with family
and 
(maybe)
weed my garden.

(...and weed the driveway!!!)


Hope you are having a
wonderful February.


*


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Empty Nest Cooking

Now that there are just the two of us living under this roof, I like to play with our favorite recipes and cook them in smaller batches.  Yes, there are times when I make the full recipe and then freeze half for another meal, but when it's cold out and I'm cooking something in the oven, I have the added benefit of extra heat in the house. 

Here is a favorite veggie dish, this recipe makes 6-8 servings:

SPINACH CASSEROLE

Preheat oven to 350F, grease 9 inch casserole dish.

2- 10 oz. boxes frozen, chopped spinach - defrosted, drained
1 cup small curd cottage cheese
1/3 cup sour cream
3 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Squeeze extra moisture out of spinach, place in mixing bowl.  Add the rest of the ingredients.  Blend thoroughly, turn into greased casserole dish, smooth top. Optional:  Sprinkle fresh ground black pepper on top.   Bake about 45 - 50 minutes until firm & puffy.


Here's Spinach Casserole for 2-4.



Preheat oven 350F, grease 7 inch dish (I used a small pie plate).


I defrosted the spinach in the square microwave dish,
didn't have time to let it defrost 'on its own.'

1 - 10 ounce box of frozen spinach, defrosted, drain excess water
1/3 to 1/2 cup small curd cottage cheese
1 or 2 heaping tablespoons sour cream
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon flour
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground pepper

Squeeze extra moisture out of spinach,



place in mixing bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients. 



Blend thoroughly,



turn into greased casserole dish,



smooth top.



Optional: Sprinkle fresh ground black pepper on top.  



Bake about 40 minutes until firm & puffy.




This recipe is very user friendly, there will be no one to check up on you if you use 10 or 20 ounces of frozen spinach from a bag or *GASP!*  if you use fresh spinach, cooked, drained and allowed to cool. 

Have fun with your food.


*

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A Garden in Galveston

In Galveston, Texas, at the corner of Postoffice and 25th Streets, there is an antique shop which is closed on Tuesdays.  I know this because that's the day I showed up on their doorstep.  Lucky for me, it was not a wasted trip, just across the street from the shop there is a city garden. 

Not a city garden like Moody Gardens but a garden like you or I might have with raised beds full of all kinds of vegetables, herbs, and flowers.  It looked like half a city block had been turned into the most wonderful, and beautiful, home garden.

I had traveled to Galveston to see the beach and was
surprised to see this mostly edible landscape.

I took a picture of the front gate but it appears to have gotten lost in my camera.  The gate was locked or I would have gone into the garden for a walk.

A little covered area to get out of the sun or rain.


Looks like someone was looking for a quick bite.
No, I did not pull this up!

I like the palm trees 'scattered' here and there,
and the raised beds with their lush herbs and veg.


Surrounded by a little picket fence to keep me out.

We got home late on Wednesday.  Thursday morning, still inspired by the Galveston garden, I wanted to get out and work in my own garden. 


Thanks to TAFB for the picture. 
Yes, this is me, the woman with the Heinz 57 hair color. 

But the best use of my time on Thursday, the second Thursday of the month, was to go and paint with my friends. The Tarrant Area Food Bank's Empty Bowls Event is this Friday, February 17th. Join us if you can on Friday or if you'd like to paint bowls  join us on March 8th at Hart Street Pottery.

Happy Valentine's Day to you all.


*

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Edge of the World

Having an adventure away from home.

Galveston Island, Texas - the edge of my world. 



I am such a creature of habit, when I went out
for my morning walk I took my iPod. 

Never used the iPod, I was too busy
enjoying the wind and the sound of the waves. 


video

(My first video in blogland.)


Whatever you are listening to I hope makes you smile
and wherever you are this day I hope you have peace.


*

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Daffs

The temperatures have dropped a bit



but the daffodils do not seem to care. 



It's the first week of February,
I'm still busy with Winter clean up,  



and the daffs have decided it is time to bloom. 




Even on cold nights I enjoy being in my garden.
I plant light colors and whites just to see the
moonlight reflecting on the blooms.





I walk around the garden and have to smile. 




This is my favorite time of year. 
I'm not crazy, anytime something is blooming
it's my favorite time of the year.


*

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Frog

This green froggy bank has been with me since 1968.  It looks very MOD don't you think? 

On the window sill in the laundry room -
iron, bank, rubber duck and  marbles.

Today my little bank sits proudly in the laundry room window and collects coins, and sometimes a dollar or two, that get left in clothing.  As clothes washer for the family this is how I make a bit of extra cash.

Like many people I have talked to recently, I can see that I take money for granted.  Not that I have piles of the stuff around the house.  I just always seem to have enough to meet my needs.  There have been times in my life where I counted (and recounted) every penny.  These days I just whip out my debit or credit card and get on with my life.

Then there was Tuesday.  Tuesday, two weeks ago, when I was out shopping doing my serious stocking up of paper products and such.  Please don't leave when I tell you - I was at Walmart.  On this day they had the best price for the items I needed.  I was very careful to buy American made.  As I neared the checkout area a sweet voice came over the sound system. "Attention, Walmart Shoppers, we are sorry for the inconvenience but at this time our service is down and we can not take credit or debit cards.  Again, we are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause."

Hello?  Help?!

I looked at a few of my fellow shoppers, we were all looking around like we had just heard that Elvis was in the store looking for backup singers and wanted to meet each and every one of us.

Disbelief is a weird thing.

I slowly started for the front of the store.  As I walked I heard the announcement again.  They were still sorry and they were still unable to accept any form of payment except cash.

I had a few dollars on me but not enough to pay for this afternoon's work.  All the price checking and looking to see where things had been made would be for nothing if these guys couldn't get their computers up and running.  They couldn't.  Word got around through the shoppers - there was an ATM connected with the bank that was in the front of the store and for a small $3.50 fee I could get cash, pay for my groceries and leave.  Or I could just leave, afternoon wasted, gas wasted to get there and I would have no Kleenex in my house.  I decided that the ATM fee was worth it, got my money (I did great I got enough for all my purchases except one item - for a moment or two I thought I was a genius).

Sad thing was when I looked back in the store there were carts left all over the place.  Are we becoming that much of a cashless society?  Where does that leave us when computers are down? 

That moment or two that I considered myself a money genius vanished when I realized:  I am not prepared.  I really don't have supplies at home.  If I had had to leave the store that day it would have made our lives a bit uncomfortable.  What if a neighbor had needed help?  How can I help anyone if I can't help myself?

Coincidence time:  Sometime during that week a blog I follow, Mockingbird Hill Cottage (yes, I started following her because I love the idea of naming our house  - another story for another day).  Anyway, Claudia at MHC is working with 4 other bloggers and they are doing a series on Thrifty Living 2012.  It's interesting how different folks are making life work within their means. 

A week or so later I also found Rhonda at Down to Earth (a blog about simple life).  Rhonda is teaching me how to stock a pantry, really stock a pantry.  Not the one extra roll of paper towels, a few bags of pasta, and a few cans of tomatoes and soup that I had been happy with for the longest time.  To really stock up, to be prepared - to be ready at all times to take care of the people I love.

All of these blogs have me looking at homemaking in a whole new way.  Not in the June Cleaver pearl earrings on while I vacuum sort of way but as a member of society who makes the world a better place because of the way I live.

I didn't mean to go on forever.  It's just I'm on the verge of learning things new to me and I wanted to share.  I'm also exhausted from working in the garden and I need sleep.

Tell me, do you just live day to day - or are you ready for anything come what may?


It's Thursday, join me at ColoradoLady 's Vintage Thingy Thursday to see other vintage treasures. 


*