I just got back from my labs and gassing up Bugs. So now to do a few things.
I have a sourdough loaf of cran-walnut in the oven baking. I’m totally into this sourdough bread-making right now. Maybe a little too obsessed but it is fun for me. So far, the olive loaf is in first place with cheddar jalapeno a second. I don’t have any more Castelvetrano olives left but I do have the kalamata left so I’ll use them. Safeway has the Castelvetrano ones so next time I’m in there I’ll get them. The best place to get them is Costco but it seems that it is more of an annual thing. The year before I got the giant jar in the fall and then never saw it again till this past winter.
I got the entryway door wreaths done with the faux apple blossoms and white blossoms. I might go get some pansies or violas for the entry too.
Tonight I’m making some spring rolls I have in the freezer, jasmine rice, chicken satay, and some crispy tofu. I need to get some cilantro from the store and that’s it. I need to marinate the chicken and then make some rice later.
I need to do a Monday morning house reset and my weekly Monday things, like wash mirrors, and dust. FL calls it home blessing, I try not to use blessing as it has a religious connotation but it doesn’t matter really in the long run.
We’re watching a series from a Harlan Coben book. It’s called Safe. It’s a little intense but quite good and has Michael Hall ( Dexter). He’s a great character actor.
Another week of beautiful weather. I’m sure glad I don’t live in ‘snow country’ back east. Having grown up in NY, I remember snowy roads, ice storms, etc. But at 18, I left for Arizona and that was that.
The sourdough olive bread came out delicious.
I am having tons of fun trying these new bread recipes. I’m slicing and freezing about half of each loaf. I may need to experiment what’s the best way to freeze. Double wrap? aluminum foil? Not sure. Any bread bakers out there with suggestions? Up for today is cran-walnut sourdough!
I plan on dropping off Goodwill this morning and then hitting up Target for a wastebasket for the laundry room. I also want to pick up a faux sprig of apple blossom for the front/side door grapevine wreaths since I’m in the entryways this week. I think the week is split with the kitchen zone on Tuesday the first.
My favorite Youtuber, Minimom, in New Zealand was trying out a new cleaning system from Clean Mama. She’s very popular and has a huge following. I copied some PDFs for cleaning weekly and thought I’d try it but after writing it down, I felt it wasn’t going to work for me. Basically, she does have daily tasks and weekly ones. But for instance, once a week it’s the bathroom, once a week vacuum, etc. She also has monthly ones. I think it’s a good system if you have a large house and or family. For me, I felt it was over-complicated. here’s the link Clean Mama. Funny, you open the page and it says “cleaning doesn’t need to be complicated.” I think she has a good method, just not for my house.
Tomorrow I have my labs so I should know by the end of the week how much of a rise my Kappa light chains go. I hope it’s just small. If it follows the previous pattern it took, the rise is slow at first and then picks up and rises more quickly. I have a pretty good sense of how my body feels so that will also be an indicator. I don’t think it will be as long as last time since I’ve come out of remission so much faster( 6 months as opposed to 4 1/2 years. ) Oh well, it is what it is.
It’s been a really nice week for me. Mellow and I feel like I got a lot done.
Walking has been really great and two people that used to walk at the same time showed up. They are friendly and always use headlamps. It’s been about 6 months since we’ve seen them so who knows why. I have to say not having the dog walker there has made the park mellow and pleasant. But if he comes back, we’ll deal with it.
I have another sourdough loaf of jalapeno cheddar ready to go. It’s so delicious and really quite easy. You just need the starter feed and then the recipe is basically no-knead and does a slow rise in the refrigerator. If you’re interested it’s King Arthur’s no-knead sourdough recipe and then I just added about a cup of cheddar and a few tablespoons of chopped jalapenos. I didn’t alter the recipe, just added it. I plan on trying an olive one and a walnut one.
Here’s another amaryllis bulb blooming. This one is called Minerva.
Today I might go to the pet bookstore but I’ll do my morning reset first and then see. I also have a load to go to the Goodwill. As usual, it’s in the back of buggie(my 2000 VW) and has been for a few weeks.
I just made the pizza dough for tonight and the oven is coming up to temperature for the bread. ( which takes forever to get to 500 degrees). After it comes up to temp. you drop it back down to 475 or 450 depending on what kind of bread you’re baking.
I plan on swimming tomorrow which I’m looking forward to.
I always like a bit of a challenge so I decided to do a $100 a week grocery challenge. That’s for 4 adults. Usually, my grocery bill averages $700 for the 4 of us so that’s a $300 difference. So that means using lots of pantry and freezer items. We’re in a good place to do that as both are filled although the freezer is only about half full that’s ok. I think if you didn’t have a well-stocked pantry $100 a week for 4 adults might be hard.
My plan is to keep a list of what I’m using and where I’ll replenish it like Costco or Winco.
So far I’ve spent $30 at Winco and .48 at Bel-air. The Winco shop was almost all veggies and salad stuff plus milk and a half and half.
The meals this week have been:
Smokey Lentil Soup with cheese quesadillas. The lentil soup is a favorite from NYT.
Sheet pan nachos. This is a new way( for me) to make nachos that I took off of Mavis Butterfield’s blog. She makes her nachos this way in the oven. It’s a great way to do it and very easy and clean up is a breeze.
An Ina Garten recipe for Bouef Bourguignon. I made it in the crockpot and that was a winner too.
Tonight is a big salad and grilled chicken /tofu. We use to call this the Kitchen Favorite because back in the 70’s the original vegetarian restaurant in Auburn was called “The Kitchen’. Of course, it didn’t have chicken but basically, it was salad, grilled tofu, and avocado slices. They made the best blue cheese dressing which I’ve never been quite able to duplicate but Trader Joe’s blue cheese dressing is close.
Tomorrow will be homemade pizza. I have everything I need.
Saturday, I’m planning tofu burgers with all the fixings and fries.
Sunday will end the week out or begin the week depending on how I look at it. Maybe a spaghetti night.
A lovely walk with just the two of us. 🙂 Sundays are usually quieter anyway but the dog walker was always there regardless. I’ve come up with two scenarios: either he moved??? or has had some surgery/illness prevention him from walking. Being that he walked 5 miles a day (I’m guessing) not walking just doesn’t seem an option. It doesn’t matter, he’s not there and we are truly enjoying the park again.
This morning we had a nice breakfast of scrambled eggs with Boursin cheese, rolls that my daughter made, and some bacon. ( no veggie bacon today:( ) Right now I have the sourdough bread in the oven on its last 15-minute bake. This one is jalapeno cheddar. The asiago one was quite delicious. Last night we had stuffed peppers in the crockpot with brown rice, cheese, walnuts, and onions. I cooked them in a tomato base. Quite yummy. Tonight I’m making some grilled chicken, potatoes and a big salad. I’ll probably grill some tofu too. The rest of the week is undecided but I am going to start my pantry challenge early( this week) and see how it goes.
We had a couple of spectacular sunrises and sunsets the last few days because of the wind stirring up so much dust/particles in the air. Reds, oranges, yellows.
We’ve been debating the wood stove thing again vs gas fireplace. We know down the road we will need to do this as B will not be able or want to keep up with firewood. Plus firewood is messy and the dust isn’t good for the air quality esp. since my daughter is asthmatic. I guess we just need to go into a fireplace store and find out how much they are and installation.
Oh here’s the bread, I just took out of the oven. yummmmm….
I plan on two swims this week and we may drive up to Lake Tahoe to see the snow.
The copay on the tooth extraction was not inexpensive but necessary so that doesn’t fit into frugalness. It was, though, a low spend week overall. A few groceries from Safeway and a few things from Home Depot for the sunroom.
I started a folder for the few tax things we have but still need the banks 1099/98? for any interest which I don’t think is more than $50. It could even be way less as we don’t have a large savings act. Anyway, until that comes and anything else out there, it’s too early to do them. I did log into turbo tax though and started the form.
I’m planning on doing a pantry challenge in February which will involve eating from the freezer and pantry. I made a 4-week menu plan for dinners and it looks pretty good overall. I also plan on challenging myself to only spend $100 a week. That will not include non-food or alcohol. Maybe I’ll budget $25 a week for that. Overall, I’ve done pretty well for food this month @ about $700. But food prices are really quite scary and high right now and I don’t think that’s going to change. I have plenty to use and would really like to try and do this.
Another nice walk this morning and still the Christmas miracle of no dog walker continues. We do though have a new person who has been there a few times. He lives across from the park but doesn’t use a flashlight and that is one of my pet peeves. It’s dark people, use a fu#%king flashlight or headlamp so we can see you. I hope he fades away soon.
We’re having Costco pizza tonight because B had a port flush and labs in Roseville and I had a swimsuit from Costco for him to return. Because we’re not usually there on Fridays, this worked out. I also am putting together stuffed peppers for tomorrow night that I’ll cook in the slow cooker.
I’m not sure whether I’ll swim tomorrow but I’d like to. It depends if I want to drive out again.
Next week is another no appt week for me which I do love. My next labs are at the end of the month.
B’s dental appt for his wisdom tooth extraction went well. He does seem to bounce back from these things very well. His next appt is to try and reattach the crown that fell off. I’m not sure about a new crown since they are expensive. The co-pay on the extraction was just over $500 so not cheap.
We’re almost done watching Season 2 of The Witcher. It’s a great series if you like that kind of stuff, which we do. I also just started reading the book and the author is Polish and the writing is good. We need a new series to watch as we finished what we were watching. I guess we could go back and rewatch some things.
Our beautiful weather continues and afternoons are really nice. I didn’t swim yesterday as I wasn’t feeling 100% for some reason. I plan on swimming tomorrow though.
I made another boule of sourdough this time with asiago cheese. It came out perfecto!! Last night I made a chile Relleno casserole with some of the hatch chiles I froze this summer. It was quite good and much easier than traditional rellenos that require whipping the egg whites first. Tonight I plan on a simple meal of burgers(impossible and maybe meat) and spicy coleslaw.
I found this poem by Mary Oliver on someone else’s blog. I mean, how wonderful is that!
Another great walk this morning with a pretty sunrise. Nobody else there, not even the AH which we’re not sure why or what’s up with that but still it’s great not to have him stomping by us.
It looks like a cloudy day but the temperatures are really ok with high @ 60-65. Not bad for this time of year at all. The next 10 days actually look quite nice and I think we’re going to plan a drive up to Tahoe.
This week is the bedroom zone. I’ll wash the windows and tidy up but most of it is already done as this room is very minimal. I did wash the linen cover the other day. I may or may not iron it. I do like the look of linen without ironing it. The only thing I’ll probably do is tidy the closet some.
I made some sourdough pancakes this morning from the discarded sourdough and I have a batch ready to go for bread. The pancakes were good. I’ll bake the bread tomorrow after letting it do a slow rise in the refrigerator.
Just look at that beautiful starter. Except for it sort of exploded.
Here’s one of the amyrillys blooming. I bought the 4 pack of bulbs(Costco) and one didn’t come up. The other 2 have buds and this one is blooming. They are strange plants and I don’t think I will do them again. I love orchids though and usually buy one every time I go to Trader Joes.
This week is quiet for me but B has 3 appts. , two dentist and his port flush and blood draw. I plan on swimming at least 2x but that’s about it.
My second favorite Youtube vlogger, Beneta Larsson, has a 6 part series on decluttering if you’re interested. She is a minimalist that walks the talk. Her apartment is a beautiful example of minimalism and I love her cats. I’ve definitely been inspired by her.
I ended up sending a bouquet of flowers from Farmgirl Flowers to Heidi’s family. Honestly, I’m not good at what is appropriate in these matters. But I figured they would at least send a nice message of our thoughts are with them all and we miss Heidi. We haven’t really heard anything but her oldest daughter did write a nice obituary. We found some photos of the fun times we had when she came out. I might try and put them together in an album.
We went to Costco on Sunday and that was a good grocery haul. I didn’t buy any meat but did get the Impossible burgers on sale. We had them one night with all the condiments. They’re good but I’m not really into eating too many highly processed foods like that. Last night I made my excellent spinach mushroom crepes with gruyere cheese sauce. Quite yummy. Tonight is pizza night but none of us feel like pizza so I’ll do something else.
This morning I put together 3 cheese lasagnas for the freezer. I had bought a large container of ricotta at Winco a few weeks back so that’s why I wanted to make the cheese lasagnas.
I plan on swimming tomorrow and then do some decluttering out in the barn. My son is away for the weekend as it’s MLK day on Monday so he has that off. We have a bunch of old posters from our bookstore that need to go the thrift store. Yes, that’s a long time ago but some of them were on the wall in the barn and now they are rolled up. As I’ve said many times decluttering really never ends , it just keeps evolving.
We’ve had some super nice walks this week. Beautiful predawn and sunrise walks.
Here’s a nice picture Barclay took of the table set for dinner.
This is another he took of the sofa.
I haven’t seen any tax stuff come thru so I’m not doing any IRS stuff till it does. It should be easy enough since SS is our only income and we did take some savings for the RV partial payment. I’m guessing whatever we need will be here by the end of the month or early February.
Budget wise, medicare is way up to $170. Even with the 5.9 increase, that pretty much uses that up. On top of that both are Part D prescription plans almost tripled. I probably should have researched other plans but I was too lazy to do the necessary work. This fall I will though to see if we can get it cheaper although the little bit I did check, these plans we stayed with went to no deductible as opposed to the $400 deductible before so maybe that was the difference.
We have sunny skies and crisp cold air. We had a lovely walk this morning and I noticed that sunrise is now 7:22. So it’s starting to inch back slowly. Only one person trying to jog in the park( looked like a new years resolution). But hey, we gotta start somewhere. Then after some toast and coffee, we headed down to Costco for our monthly shop. My printer has died so I needed to check there for one and they had the inexpensive one I was looking at online. So that’s ticked off. I have to have a scanner for my LLS stuff although my daughter showed me how to do it with an app. We were in and out in under an hour.
I haven’t heard from Heidi’s family but imagine that they are planning the funeral. Being very Catholic I’m sure there’s some kind of mass being done. I got off some flowers and they should arrive early this week.
This week is the bathroom zone and I plan on doing that later or maybe tomorrow. Depends on how motivated I feel.
For dinner, I have white bean soup with brown butter pasta on the side. Growing up as poor as we were, my mother would make brown butter bow tie noodles. I kind of doubt it was butter but maybe it was. I’m not sure margarine would do the same. I know when my grandmother would come up from the Bronx she always brought a pound of unsalted butter to go with the Jewish rye. Anyway, I love noodles and brown butter.
Other than that, I need to go out to the prepper pantry in the barn and put away the canned tomatoes and coconut milk I bought. I need to make a current list of what’s out there as I’ve taken out quite a few things.
The update on my kappa light chains is that it went up a point to 20.6 so now out of normal range. 1 point is not a big increase so I’m not too concerned,yet. Next month , who knows??
I've been married for nearly 15 years to a wonderful husband and I'm a mom to three great kids ages 12, 11 and 9. Oh, and I just happen to have cancer. Multiple Myeloma is a cancer of the blood that is currently incurable but IS considered highly treatable! My goal is to make people laugh, cry or feel a little less alone whether you are a mom, cancer patient or BOTH!