Friday, February 27, 2015

Hard Drive Issues

My husband turned to me and said
The Hard Drive is Failing!

 We have moved documents and photos to an external 
drive and will see how long this laptop lives.
In the meantime, it's been VERY SLOW to do
anything so we knew something was up,
it is almost not worth trying to upload or read Facebook/Blogs.

I'll try posting this weekend as long as we are up an running.
 And the power doesn't go out from a storm system that
is heading our way.  We've been pretty lucky this year,
not much in snow or ice but I still complain about it
when we do have it.

See you all this weekend.

Stay warm.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

My Hubby Drank the Dog Teeth - revisited

My Hubby Drank the Dog Teeth

“The big coffee cups are on the top shelf,” I said to my mother who is visiting for Christmas. “Check to make sure there are no, um . . . trinkets . . . inside,” I added. She turned to me with a questioning look on her face. 

From across the room my husband yelled, “ I drank the dog teeth one year.” 

“What?” mom questioned.

“She put the dog’s teeth in a cup. In the cabinet with all the other glasses! “ he exclaimed. I filled up the cup, took a drink and had a mouthful of nasty, dirty, old dog teeth! ”

By this time my mother is doubled over, hand covering her mouth so she doesn’t spit out her entire gulp of water all over my kitchen floor. I am literally crying from laughter, unable to do anything but shake my head in confirmation, true, true, true! 

Mom looks over at me and says, “Did you think the Dog Fairy would show up and put treats under their pillows?” 

I still can’t talk. My mind is replaying the moment all those years ago when I walked into the kitchen to find my husband spitting out canine “baby” teeth into the sink. Being the person who was not spewing teeth into the sink, I am thinking “Oh, that was so funny.” He and I were not of the same mindset that day.

The way I see it, it’s just one more great story we have to pass down through the years. I may share a few more of these with you along the way, and with this family, there is no lack of material!

 (I came across this post which I wrote several years ago when my mom was visiting for Christmas.  The actual drinking of the teeth happened back in the 90s sometime.  It still makes me laugh) 

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Pork with Caramelized Onions and Jowels

Pork with pork, does it get any better?
Bad weather was approaching so, knowing that everyone
would be rushing to the grocery for all the milk, bread and eggs
their carts would hold, I asked my husband to take a trip to 
the store very early, while everyone was on the way to work.

He came back with a cut of meat we never had before,
a pork sirloin that had been run through a tenderizer machine,
 sort of like a cube steak but pork.  He set the oven for 300 degrees F 
and selected an oven proof skillet with a lid.

He cut up some onions and salted them until they felt grainy.
Set them aside for about 30 minutes and let the salt draw out the juices.
Then he cubed some jowl meat and fried it in a mixture of olive oil
and vegetable oil until it was slightly browned but not completely
crispy.  It will be combined with the meat for additional cooking.
Remove jowls and add in the onions, cooking until partially caramelized. 
He removed these and set them aside.

He took the tenderized pork and dipped it in 
Italian bread crumbs, let it sit a bit, 
dipped them in a mixture of egg/milk and back into more crumbs.
He fried them until they were browned and then added the
jowls and onions on top, covered with an oven proof lid
and baked them for 45 minutes.

You could hardly get them out of the skillet in once piece, 
they were so tender that they fell apart upon touch.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Can You Believe It!

Can you believe it !
After all that time spent making little footballs out of bags
and posting it on my blog, THIS 
is what I found when I opened the cabinet.

Hubby went to the store.
I turned to him and said,


 I grabbed the bags and quickly folded them
so it looks like this once more.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Plastic Sack Compact Storage

If you are anything like me, you save your grocery sacks.
I use them for lunch bags, wastebasket liners, carry alls, etc.
I have a box beneath the sink where I would push them all into
a larger plastic bag and then take them out as needed.  It
was a mess with crumpled plastic bags stuck in others, some falling 
out when I pulled another one out plus they managed to find their
way outside of the bag and fall into the rest of the storage area.

Then I saw a website with a brilliant solution.
Do you remember all those little footballs you made from
paper back in high school?  She did this with the bags.
Link here

You open the bag and pull the handles so the sides are aligned.

Fold over once
and then again.

Adjust if your sides are not initially straight.

I added a red plastic so you can see the folds.
Once your sides are straight, fold over the bottom corner
so it aligns with the other side.

Flip it up so it's aligned with the other side.

When you flip as far as you can go (the handles)
fold over the handle so about an inch is visibible
and then tuck into the flap.

You'll have a little football.

I can place them in a smaller box
then squish them down so they don't hang over.
I have around 40 bags in this little box
where I used to have an overflowing mess.
Granted, I had a lot more bags in there before but
I don't think I need more than 40 at one time!

This is a great option for storage up in a craft room or
in bathrooms for the waste containers.  

Saturday, February 14, 2015

What's that Smell in the Pantry?

I was so surprised to find my husband had removed all 
the pantry items and was cleaning the shelves.  How
thoughtful of him to tackle this for me, 
 out of the goodness of his heart, right?
Well . . . .  there is a little more to the story. 

Our kitchen pantry is almost 2 ft deep.  The lower door
comes 3/4 of the way up the refrigerator so there is 
a lot of storage in it.  Unfortunately, being 2 ft deep
it is hard to see what it in the back and when we
add items while unpacking the groceries, sometimes
things get caught way in the back.  I keep saying
that I want to move most of it downstairs to the shelves
but you know how it is, maybe we'll do that on a rainy day.

That rainy day came out without a drop of rain to be found.
My husband started smelling an unusual aroma.

Not a good sign.

He emptied everything and discovered a tin of fish had
broken open.   I'm so glad I was not home, I hate those 
little fishes in a tin.  He cleaned it up and then lined 
up the cans on our counter so I could select what we 
wanted to keep upstairs.

Wow, I thought I was pretty good at using up old product
but there must have been a sale on frosting.  I rarely make
cakes so what was I thinking????  These expired in 2013.  
If it were beans or corn I would  keep it.  The expiration dates  
are really Best By dates and I have confirmed this with 
Reverse Logistics Managers   of major corporations where we 
were discussing unsalables.   I won't mess with anything that is dairy 
 like though so out  these go!!  Too bad I was not better organized.

We have an area in the basement where we store items
that we have stocked up on, especially when there is a 
great sale.  Part of it is made of wooden shelves and 
the larger part is actually grocery store shelving we got
when our friend demo'd one of the local stores for remodel.
We've had them for about 20 years and still have some of the 
price tags on the end of the shelf. That will really give you
sticker shock when you compare it to today's prices!

We're low on coffee so I'll be watching for sales there too.
At one time I had about 20 of the large tins or containers stacked up
but now we've gone through most of it.  I have to be careful now
because some of the large cans have converted to paper tubing
and I don't trust that to keep fresh.  If I am not using it immediately,
it will be only the metal cans from now on.  Better to recycle
either at the centers or for personal storage.

For canned goods, I really like the Read salads and almost
anything Glory makes.  I'll try to find these on sale when I can.

Hubby took all my cans downstairs except for the few I wanted 
up here for use in the next couple of weeks.  I need to get back
downstairs and revamp the storage so everything is in date order.

I did find that the cheese sauce in boxed macaroni doesn't go 
bad as much as the flavor is drastically changed.  The noodles are fine
but I'll throw away the powdered cheese packets. For anything 
that is aging too far out, I'll set it aside and use it up quickly.

I also looked at the counter top freeze dryer and was hoping it
was similar in price to a dehydrator; however, anything I saw was
in the $4,000 category.  Too high for me!!  Maybe some day 
if they fall in price.  It's too bad we don't have a community kitchen
set up where people could come in and can, dehydrate or freeze dry
their food.  I would have looked into that had I won that $450 MM lottery!
Since my blog post was on cleaning the pantry, you can assume I did not win.

Now it's on to the sewing machine repair shop.  I have no idea what
I did but I hit a thick seam, the needle got stuck and when I tried to
free it, it broke.  It sewed a straight seem a day or so ago but when
I went to turn the corner (top stitching close to the edge) the fabric
caught again in the feed dogs and the bobbin just became a mess.

 I will break out a backup machine but want to get this Pfaff fixed
and ask him what I did wrong so I can correct it next time.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Darlene Gives Birth

I am now an official goat mid-wife!
I had the most amazing experience with helping our friends
while their boer goat, Darlene, was getting ready to give birth
that resulted in two beautiful boys.

Darlene was segregated from the rest of the herd
and placed in the shelter next to the house.  
We were ready with towels and medical supplies
and soon the process began.

 Before long we could see a foot, then another foot
and the tip of a nose starting to emerge.  With a little
support so Darlene could push better, baby #1 was born.

Darlene began to clean him until baby #2 quite quickly appeared.

 My friend held the babies while I tied off the cords
and after they were clean we applied iodine.

I continued to wipe down baby #1 as baby #2 was being
attended to. Beau, the half Great Pyrenees and Australian Shepherd 
kept careful watch over the entire process.  He was helping
to clean and keep everyone safe.   He guards
the goats that need human interference while his sister,
Bella, guards the herd.  Both are not only guardians but
but also wonderful family dogs.  Beau
thinks he is a lap dog and that 40# head gets really, really
heavy when he wants you to cradle it in your arms.
I can't say I don't love it through!

We were all thrilled when the babies finally figured out
how to eat and Darlene allowed them to nurse.

It amazes me that the babies were up and walking so quickly.

Darlene was pretty happy the whole thing was over.
Now I can't wait to go see them again!

Saturday, February 7, 2015

What IS That In My Burger

It's green and on a bun. 
It smells like a hamburger but I'm not so sure about that!

 I can identify the individual ingredients!
Let's play Eye Spy:
 Peas, corn, carrots, green beans, soybean and a whole lot of green stuff.

Here is another hint:
One of these things is not like the others.
One of these things does not even compare.
Do you know now?

YES, a Veggie burger from White Castle!

This is what a White Castle normally looks like.
It's small, about a three inch square, cooked on a bed on onions
and tucked into tiny cartons that nestle into each other in the
bag or case.  They are a St Louis tradition, usually about 2 AM,
but in my case on the way home from work.  
In my opinion you must eat them with an Orange Drink.
It's not soda, more like Hi C.

My husband called from the neighbor's house and said we were
hanging out there Friday night.  I said I'd pick up dinner.  
Now every time we're with this couple someone says,
"We should go get White Castles!" but the nearest one is
20 miles away; however, I was passing right by it.

   So, it was decided.  White Castles.
I stopped in Eureka, MO and picked up a Crave Case 
because you just never know  how many sliders everyone is 
going to eat.  (My limit is about 3-  with cheese)
 I got a combo case- cheese/no cheese plus picked each person 
up a Fudge Covered Brownie on a Stick!

I did not stop there.  No sir- I do it up right!
They introduced White Castle Veggie Burgers.
Could they be good? 
 Probably not, but we have to see for ourselves.
I added 4 to the order.

The verdict is in.
Tom (hubby):  They taste like onions but nothing like a burger.
Kathy (me):   You have to be kidding!  They have (ewww) Texture
and I see beans!  And Corn!
Laura: takes a tiny bite- no
Dennis:  Takes a bite.  Takes another bite.  Shakes his head.  A huge NO.

The vote is in.  Absolutely Not!

BUT WAIT- there is more!!!

I forgot Beau's vote:

I must tell you that Beau is a mix of Great Pyrenees and Australian Shepherd.
His sister, Bella, guards the goats but Beau hangs out at the house
and watches over any of the babies that need human care or currently, the
pregnant mom that is temporarily housed in the smaller shelter
next to the house.  The burgers were a big hit with him!

LINK to the Veggie Burger

Warning: for those unfamiliar with White Castle, they are
referred to as Belly Bombers or more recently Sliders.
The patties have five holes in them which allow them to cook more rapidly.
They are cooked on a thick bed of onions causing them to steam
and the bun is placed on top of the cooking burgers so the flavors
seep into the bun itself.  They are known to have some side effects.  
You may not want to eat them with polite company 
or if you plan to spend any length of time with polite company after you eat.  
Fortunately, my neighbors don't fall into that category so we OK!

Big news folks.
On Valentines Day our White Castle have candle lit dinners for you and your honey
from 4-10 PM-  Reservations Only!!
Better Call Now!

Monday, February 2, 2015

Ground Hog and Dumplings- a Recipe

A Repost in celebration of Ground Hog Day
(this is the link to the recipe)

If you are squeamish about eating wild game,
this is not the post for you!

If; however, you would like a great ground hog recipe,
click on the link for the details. 

This was the ground hog that threatened our foundation. 
They can dig several feet of tunnels and up to five
entrances, collapsing foundations!  That being said,
this one's days were over and to not waste a perfectly 
good ground hog, I skinned it and cooked it up.
(I guess I was more like Granny than Elly Mae that day).