Frugal Friday

With the abundance of cherry tomatoes and Roma tomatoes, I’ve been making lots of salsa.

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First, I followed the Ball recipe for salsa to the letter and even with the added safety of a 1/8 of citric acid which is done to keep the acid ratio correct.  I ended up with 4 pints of beautiful looking salsa for wintery days when you want to think back to these beautiful summer days. KIDDING……right now it’s supposed to be 102 today and 105 tomorrow.  Yes, summery but not my idea of fun.

Then I made freezer salsa which is super easy since there is no canning. Just up in the food processor and whip up. Put in jars with enough headspace and freeze. And, oh my, it was delicious.  I even made one scrambled egg just so I could pour about 1/2 cup of the salsa on it. It was more like salsa with an egg.  Yummy…

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Today is normally pizza night but with this heat, it ain’t happening. Even if we ordered it’s still too hot for pizza. So I’m making a nice spinach soup that we can have either chilled or slightly warm. My favorite recipe is from the catering mystery series that starts with ” Dying for Chocolate”. It’s a great series with the main character as the caterer who also happens to solve murders. So her recipe for Goldielockes Gourmet Spinach soup is delicious. She doesn’t use a stick blender to mix but I do since I prefer it as smooth soup.  Then if I’m really motivated, I might make a few grilled cheese bites to go with it.

So, the prepper barn pantry was getting pretty warm with this heatwave. So we went to Home Depot and bought the cheapest cooler we could for the window. It is keeping it marginally cool but we also have a swamp cooler out there but the switch was not working and the part needed to be ordered. So it arrived this morning and now it is fixed ( thanks to the handyman husband).!!!! So the barn temperature is at 72 which is really good.  So I’m pretty happy about that. Since we don’t have a garage that could be a designated pantry and kept cool, this is the best I can do.

On the frugal side, all the bills for the month are done except the water bill which comes in on the 20th. I have auto-pay for that so it comes out of our checking.

My LLS check arrived for my Medicare amount and prescription Part D amount. Always very grateful to the LLS and its donors that provide these grants to many people all of who have some type of blood cancer.

Well, off to clean up the kitchen.

 

 

 

 

Simple Sunday

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Here are the two barrels with bamboo. The window above is our tiny bathroom.  The bedroom window is to the right and that’s where we thought he 3rd barrel would look nice.

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Here’s the updated closet. It probably doesn’t look much different but it is very bright and sparkly.  We added some new hooks for my clothes, as I tend to hang my walking/workout pants and jacket there.

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This is the clothes side. Mine is on the bottom. As you can see, I don’t own a lot of clothes.

I’m thinking of adding a barn door ( one that slides) instead of the curtain. I need to check out how much the hardware is but I don’t think it’s a lot.

This morning I made another batch of tomato sauce from garden tomatoes. I think I’ll get about 2 Talenti size containers. I will freeze these. We are getting a lot of Roma tomatoes and orange cherry tomatoes. Not too many slicing ones yet.

I’m experimenting with making pie crust to this morning. It seemed to come together very nicely so fingers crossed. It’s in the fridge for a few hours minimum.

I was going to start the kitchen zone but decided to wait till tomorrow since I was making a mess with tomatoes and flour. So tomorrow will be the kitchen zone and a general tidy up.

My two, lost in USPS space,books finally arrived. the one is the vegetarian one I wanted from The Ananda community. Ananda was started in 1967 in North San Juan which is about an hour from here. It was really at its height in the 1970s. We went multiple times for different reasons. Meditation and I seem to remember a wedding.  Then at some point in the late 1980s, Kriyananda, the founder( AKA Donald Walters) got in some serious tax problems and I believe sex scandals and fled to Italy.  Anyway, it is a beautiful piece of property. It’s probably over 600 acres about and still continues to this day offering retreats.

This week is hot again so that’s kinda unfortunate. The few days we had in the 80s were great.

Next week is quiet with no appointments so maybe we’ll plan a drive out somewhere. Everywhere here in the Sierra Nevada foothills and Tahoe areas are just inundated with people from the valley and the Bay area. Any thought of a solitary hike is out of the question.  I’m not even sure how camping will go next year as everyone has decide to buy campers, RV’s and whatever and flood the campgrounds. I guess a lot depends on when we get the vaccine.

I am reading an outstanding book that I bought on Amazon.

‘White too long’, by Robert Jones.  It is an amazing book about White Supremecy in White Christianity.  I’m an atheist, but I have a lot of respect for this author and what he is writing.

If you’re so inclined, I’d recommend buying it even if it is too support his thesis monetarily.

 

 

Well, not good on the labs.

Well, I figured another increase. Up to 239.9mg/L from 176. So another almost 70 point increase. Lamba went down to 10.2mg/L so of course, that means the ratio went up. Up to 23.4 mg/L.

The bigger news is now there is finally a monoclonal protein showing:( it’s at .3  I haven’t had a M protein in over 4 years so that is a bit unsettling.  Well, as I’ve said, the blood tells the story. Not much I can do about it except plan on the timing of Chemotherapy. I’m guessing when I see him at the end of August he will still say, wait.  I’m predicting by November/December will be a good time to start.  If you figure about a 70 point increase each 8 weeks, that puts it at 4months apprx.

This will be my 4th relapse( well technically my 3rd, since I counting when I became refractory to Revlimid and started Pomalyst.) so I guess I know the drill.

 

Projects done!

The closet looks bright and clean. We did move our space heaters to the barn and I have one box of “I don’t know what to do with” stuff. One item is my old Waring blender that I bought new in 1985. It still works fine but most I use my Vitamix. So I’m undecided and will wait on deciding to give away or not.  We still need to hang my mirror back up and then I can take a photo if I remember.

B finished repotting the bamboo in the new barrels. This is actually a pretty big job as the roots needed to be cut with a Sawzall.  That’s how thick they were.  We are going to get a 3rd barrel as it will fill the space out nicely.

We also took everything out of the chest freezer and defrosted it. I got a good count on what’s in there so that was helpful plus it’s more organized.

The weather is quite a bit cooler and we actually sat outside last night.  Today is also really nice with a high of only 85.

Yesterday I bagged up the Central Milling flour into 3 mylar bags. I could have used the food saver bags but  I wanted to test out how the flour would be. The other bag I will use the food saver bags and then compare the two.

Tuesday we did our Costco shop. It was just under $500. Some of that was alcohol. The Costco beer which is a variety of ales and other types is a great deal at $20. and this was the first time we’ve seen it in almost a year. So we bought 2. That should last a while. I don’t drink beer but B does( although not too much right now with his issues) and my son has the occasional beer. Then we bought champagne for our anniversary. Since we’re not going anywhere, we figured we’ll do some kind of celebration dinner with champagne. This shop wasn’t really a prepper shop but more stuff for the month, salad stuff, avocados, spinach, cheese, bread.  The only things I still need are milk, bananas, vegetable shortening, and burger rolls. I’ll probably do that later in the week.  I’m hoping this shopping will get us thru most of the month.  Oh, I did get organic pasta that was on sale. So that’s for the prepper pantry.  Later this month we’ll hit Winco and get 2 more of the buckets if they have them and the gamma lids. I’m tempted to go sooner than later as I’m guessing they will get sold out.

I’m still waiting on my labs, so maybe by tomorrow.

Tomorrow is my son’s 26th birthday. Such a wonderful young man. Funny, talented, smart, and has a full-time job with California State Sierra Nevada Conservancy.  He was a fun kid and outgoing.  He was homeschooled all the way thru high school. He then went to Community college, got 2 degrees, and then graduated from CSU Sacramento. No student debt and he did most of it on his own. We are so proud of him. So, I need to find out what kind of dinner he wants and dessert. Our family ritual is the birthday boy/girl gets to pick their favorite dinner and dessert.

I’m reading the new Todd Borg” Tahoe Hit”. It just came out if you’re interested. He’s one of my favorite authors and is local to Lake Tahoe.

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Simple Sunday

For some reason, I got a bee in my bonnet. so to speak, to clean out and paint our ONE closet. It is a good size, 4×6. I always wanted to make this a half bath with a small shower but that would mean digging up our septic and putting a bigger one in. That expensive just isn’t on the table anymore( unless we win the lottery, and since I don’t play, that’s not happening).

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So we need to get a roller to do most of it. The Hardware store doesn’t open till 9am( here in town, not Home Depot). I have 1/2 a gallon of white and that may or may not be enough. We’ll start with the ceiling and then the clothes side. I’ll consider going into Home depot for more Behr paint or I’ll go tomorrow and finish the pantry side.  Getting the clothes back in would take priority as they are on the bed and the couch right now.

If nothing else it will get the dust bunnies out and freshen up the space which hasn’t been done, like ever.

Also here are the mylar bags filled.

 

These are really nice bags if you’re interested. The came from TheEpicenter in Oregon. They have a zipped part as well as the normal heat part. I read it can be tricky to do the heat but I had no problem. The oxygen tabs in them should pull the oxygen out in 48 hours. Some are already showing that but others seem the same. No matter they are sealed.  I already ordered another 20 bags since a few months ago you couldn’t even get these.

Tonight I ‘m making tofu burgers with macaroni salad.  I need to go to the store and pick up some burger rolls later.

Tomorrow are my labs. It’s been 8 weeks so we’ll see what they show. As I said before Myeloma just doesn’t disappear  so with my numbers increasing it’s a matter of time before I start Velcade and Dex.

Being off Facebook has been overall easy. Once in while I miss reading what people are up to but not a whole lot.

 

Off to paint!!!

August 1, Lammas

For some reason, I have always loved the Celtic calendar. which is also called a cross-quarter. I used to believe it was all ‘past life’ influence but now that stuff doesn’t ring true. It’s probably more kinship with the Welsh( which I have in family lineage) and Irish( perhaps on my father’s side). Anyway, it doesn’t matter, why, just that I like the cross quarters and today is Lammas. The Celtic celebration of late summer.Photo Of Sunflower

I can always feel the sift of air and light at Lammas. Perhaps just that I walk early every day and notice those things.

This would be a day to bake bread from the harvest. I also saw to make beeswax candles. I used to make my own candles but have long given that up and now just buy my beeswax candles. I do burn them nightly from fall to spring but not during the summer. The glow they give is like no other and is one of my favorite rituals.

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I just made some bread so I won’t do another loaf but I do have some buttermilk to use so I am planning on making buttermilk biscuits. Good enough.

On a sad note, our neighbor has poisoned the skunks and we have one in our yard dying a painful death. It has really upset me. I don’t want skunks under our porch either but for the most part, they are harmless and they do eat things at night.  Right now it has sprayed a last spray and is in the bushes by our water pond. I guess once we can see where it is we will pick it up(with a shovel) and go bury it. It makes me mad that he did this.

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Some lavender from our plants that I harvested. I use lavender all winter to freshen up clothes and sprinkle on rugs and then vacuum up.