Simple Sunday

Another rainy Sunday. We need all the rain/snow we can get but it does get old after a while. We were able to squeeze in a walk before it start really coming down. After that, I headed into the Auburn gym just to get some weights done. It was busy but I did my round and then left.

Tomorrow I have my monthly labs so I’ll see how much of an increase there is. It’s hard for me to tell if anything is different. The only thing is being slightly more tired. Well, I’ll know by Thursday or Friday.

Tonight we’re having one of the nut loaves I made with leftover brown rice. I have some small potatoes to use up so I’ll either bake them or mash them. Not sure which. Probably whatever is easier. I haven’t put together a menu for the week so I’ll look at what I have in the freezer and pantry. I will go to Winco whenever I swim again ( it’s just across the street from the pool). I thought Tuesday but now the weather is still saying winter storm warning. So I’ll just have to be flexible.{ sigh……}.

Nothing much on the calendar for this week. I have a thrift store load to drop off but can’t do that if it’s raining. Hopefully, we’ll get a few sunny days to do some outside things. 🙂

The Flylady zones are the Living room and the entry ways. It’s split because of the March starting on Wednesday.

another snow picture

That’s all the bamboo leaning over.

Here are a few of my new obsessions with Arhoj pottery

Frugal Friday

Going over to Napa and spending relatively freely wasn’t frugal by any means. But we ticked off the boxes of what we wanted to do and it was fun for us. Since we generally do not go out to eat or buy expensive wines( ok, expensive to us is like $15 a bottle) it was an adventure.

It’s SNOWING right now. We decided to walk anyway and it was magical. Big fluffy snowflakes, the park all white, the white crane against the snow. Magical. Of course, that means no swim or gym day. But that’s ok, it is what it is. I’ll try for tomorrow. If it’s just raining, I’ll go. Right now I-80 is closed in both directions so if it opens up the freeway will probably be busy.

That’s the grey heron. The white one flew off across the pond.

One good thing is won’t have to go for any groceries except half and half. Both our containers of cream went off before their buy date. Weird. Plus I bought them both down at our Holiday Market. I have some milk so that’ll work for now. I’ll probably plan a Winco trip or Trader Joe’s for next week after a swim morning.

I started a big batch of pizza dough and will use one ball tonight and freeze the rest. I think I need to make some sauce though.

I’ve got March’s budget done. Everything looks about the same. I might pay the property tax just to get it done since I have the money in our annual bills account.

The (hoarder ) neighbor’s house has had some activity with a junk removal truck there at least 2x’s that we saw. I really do wonder what happened. I know she was quite unwell physically but to live in that garbage that we saw all over the floors is pretty awful. Would it be an eviction if the house was condemned? It’s sad really. I think that her home health aide, that was there at least 3x a week if not every day, would have called a family member or something so she could have gotten the help she needed. Years ago when she was an oxycodone addict we tried to help and offered to clean out some things and she refused. That was over 10 years ago or so.

Well, it’s still snowing. I swished the bathroom, started the sheets in the washer, did the pizza dough and am having the Eufy (the robotic vacuum) an inexpensive version of the Roomba vacuum the floors. I saw this on the Non Consumer’s advocate’s blog. And if she bought it she must have thought it a good thing as she NEVER buys anything if she doesn’t have to. I will say it does do a darn good job. It runs about $140. I think she got a sale and bought it for $99.

Thankful Thursday

I’m thankful our trip was safe and fun too.

We had a terrific trip down to Napa. There was some traffic backed up where I -80 merges with business 80 but it wasn’t too bad. We made it down in less than 2 hours and the great thing was the curmudgeon old guy( I’m sure he’s a nice guy) wasn’t there but a younger woman and we were able to check in early at 12 noon as opposed to waiting till 1pm.

We set up in half an hour and headed over to Oxbow Public market for our pizza lunch at Live Fire Pizza.

The market itself which is enclosed was packed with people probably because it was President’s day. But the pizza place was not too busy and it was divine.

We then went to Fatted Calf which is a gourmet butcher store there in the market area and I got a few different sausages to try. Not a lot but just enough to add some flavor to maybe a sauce or something.

After that, it was back to the RV camp and rested and happy hour. We didn’t feel like much dinner so we had salad and some soup.

The next day we hit up Model Bakery which is quite famous and the line showed it. We got their famous English muffins, bread, a couple of croissants and 2 cookies. From there we went to Rancho Gordo for heirloom beans. The store is not very but has a great selection. Among other beans, I bought some black garbanzos which will be interesting to try. I also bought his cookbook which happens to be all vegetarian.

We then found a new to us breakfast place called Petit Soleil. It was lovely and we had very big breakfasts. I reminded myself why I don’t eat big breakfasts:( It was good but just too rich and too much.

That afternoon it was very windy so we didn’t go walk the river trail which was our intent. We stayed in Rubi and I knitted some and read.

We left the next morning early and were home by noon.

Friday Things

Well, our trip to Napa has been on /off again till this morning when we checked the weather again and it looks ok. My concern was for the rain/snow here. But now it seems like that will hold off till Thursday. I guess we’ll see what it is tomorrow because you need 48 hrs cancellation. So I think that will be ok. It’s saying rain here Tuesday but not in Napa.

The gym was good although it seemed there were some new people I hadn’t seen before. I chatted with one of the guys from the pool and it seems he goes to the pool almost every day. The traffic wasn’t too bad for a Friday.

I just finished rereading for the hundredth( okay maybe 10th time) time Mary Stewart’s “The Crystal Cave’. I happened to see this in the Free Little Library at the park. Those books were a huge influence on me. I loved all things Arthurian especially Merlin. I guess I always have had my head in the clouds. As matter of fact, it was around the time when I was pregnant with Sachi that we called the baby “Em” which was short for Emryus, Merlin’s name was g Ambrosius. Fun fact. I’m going to hit the bookstore and see if I can get the second in the trilogy, ‘The Hollow Hills”.

I’m not planning on a pizza tonight so I’ll need to figure something out. ???? The whole pantry challenge has been great to do and we really used up stuff. There are still a few more random things and I still have lots of shelf-stable soups and meals. I have a pretty good idea of what I want to do this summer /fall for food storage. Some things worked great and others I won’t do again. It’s a bit of trial and error really.

I did come to the conclusion to NOT get a meat/bread slicer or electric knife. I guess it really came down to not wanting another appliance. So it took a while to process but I’m there now.

Thankful Thursday

<img src="" alt="Photo by <a href="">Sitraka</a> on <a href="">Unsplash

Photo by Sitraka on Unsplash

I love rock cairns. I’ve always been a rock collector and love doing this in our yard. These are lovely granite rocks.

I am thankful our woodstove is keeping us warm since it’s freezing out!! This whole week is cold and there’s been a north wind which makes it colder.

We may NOT go to Napa because it’s supposed to rain on Tuesday and we’re supposed to have snow here at home on Wednesday( that’s the day we’re supposed to come back). I’m not one for camping in the rain even though technically we’re in an RV with heat but still. It’s not quite my thing. We’ll decide by tomorrow.

I’m thankful I finished the taxes and it’s done. I guess I could have just waited to pay in April but since it was a small amount, I went ahead and did it. So Done!!!

We just found out our one neighbor who has lived here since the 1970s( we think late 70s.) was evicted. We were kind of shocked as we just figured she owned the house. It’s in terrible shape and she’s a classic hoarder. Around 10 years ago, we tried to help her when she was addicted to oxycodone but it didn’t go anywhere. I went into her house to see how/if I could clean up for her but it was too far gone for me and I was quite traumatized but the piles of boxes everywhere. Stuff everywhere. One room was so piled up with boxes you couldn’t get into it. A number of years ago, her father died and left her some money and she did put a new roof on since she had it covered in tarps for years. She also must have blown thru the money if she’s now evicted. I hope she is somewhere safe at least. I guess you never really know.

Because of that, I’m grateful that even though we still have a mortgage we can pay it with our SS. When one of us goes and we only have the higher SS it will be a different story but for now, we can manage. As long as our kids chipped in we’d be fine( whoever is left, I mean).

I’m grateful to be able to swim (as always). I love the water and gliding thru. Of course, I’m a slow swimmer but still, I’m grateful I can do it. I imagine a time will come when I’m not going to feel like driving to Roseville to swim. But it is not now.

Simple Sunday

A quiet Sunday. We walked and it was lovely in the park. No one there but us and the Canada geese.

I did the bathroom zone and then spent more time(wasted) looking at reviews on meat slicers for bread and whether an electric knife would be better. I’m undecided. I baked another sourdough and this one was some whole wheat. I timed cutting the other boule with my Mercer bread knife, which came in at under 4 minutes. Most of the slices were even. I guess one advantage of the bread slicer is it’s doing the work for you and not your arm.:)

After that, I went to the Anytime fitness gym. It wasn’t too busy today. Today’s Superbowl so maybe lots of people were doing other things.

This is another just the normal stuff week. I always appreciate the ‘normal’ weeks. Next week we’ll be in Napa so that’s exciting. I think we’re going to drive up to St Helena maybe to a winery. It’s only two nights so I know I want to go to the Rancho Gordo bean store and also back to the Public marketplace we liked so much. And there’s the river trail that we only did part of.

This week I’ll do a recheck of our taxes and then get ready to pay the little we owe and send it off. I suppose I could wait but not sure I need to. I’d rather they be done and gone.

Well, that’s it for this week.

Frugal Friday

We went to Costco yesterday and spent just under $400. That included clothes for B( sweatpants and sweatshirt), and lots of nonfood items, like my Krill oil pills( expensive even on sale) $20. The regular stuff of coffee, bagels, cheese, veggies, bananas, and some frozen food. All in all, it was a good shop. That’s probably all I’ll do for a few weeks with exception of milk, half and half, and wine or maybe something nice for Valentine’s Day.

After Costco, we had our Date Thursday and went to our favorite Mexican restaurant. We hadn’t been there in at least 6 months. So that was fun to do. I’m using a cash envelope for ‘dates’ and that’s how we paid.

Today I’ve been pottering here and there around the house. I moved my Ficus Tree to the LR where it can get more light. I started another sourdough loaf. Tidyed the kitchen and swished the bathroom. I’m trying to figure out a different way to slice my boules. I looked up a bread slicer and saw a few under a hundred that could also slice meat and cheese. It seems like it would certainly save money in the long run. When I buy deli meat it’s usually turkey or ham and since it’s Boars head it runs $17 a pound so it’s pricey. When I was in Costco I looked at their turkey breast (cooked) and it came in at About $17-20 for 4 lbs. So that would be a huge savings. I am also going to check the price of a turkey breast that I could cook myself. I just don’t want something with lots of sodium.

Tonight I’ll make a homemade pizza since last week we ordered takeout. That’s probably all that I’ll do this month. When we’re in Napa we will go out to eat but that comes under travel.

I plan on looking at our taxes again this weekend. I guess the middle class refund we got last year is confusing. It won’t be taxed by Caliornia but for the federal government it isn’t decided or something like that. I plan on just putting it under the 1099 and see if it affects our taxes. I kind of doubt it but I’ll put it in and see.

If anyone has any suggestions about a meat/bread slicer let me know or cooking just a turkey breast to slice up. I was also looking at an electric knife which some bread makers suggested so that’s an option too. An electric knife would be cheaper than a slicer. Does anyone have an opinion on an electric knife for cutting sourdough bread?

Thankful Thursday

Over on the Frugal Girl’s blog, she wrote a post the other day on 15 things she liked more about her new rental than her old house. She recently left a marriage of 25 years and is starting over in many ways. I admire her positive and generous voice and she is moving on from a challenging situation. Even though there are quite a bit of ‘God’, ‘prayers’, and Christian stuff from commenters, it doesn’t bother me because she, herself, is not proselytizing. Lots of her commentators do though and I just ignore those. She really does walk her talk and is genuinely a good person. Ok, enough, my point is I wanted to write down what I’m grateful for in this house even though it is old, small, and has some serious foundation issues, there’s still a lot of good here.

We moved here in 1995. My son was just 1 year old and my daughter 9. It really was a rundown house and we bought it as is which is probably why no one wanted it. Plus there was so much junk everywhere. It literally took years to clean it up and take down old buildings.

So what I’m thankful for here:

  1. The house sits on top of a small hill in our town and we have almost a 360 view even though there are still lots of trees. When I first came to look at this place what struck me was the light all around.

2. The house is at the end of our driveway so there are no houses behind us. I have issues with things behind me ( I absolutely hate people walking behind me). So this house has our one neighbor( Leo who is like a million years old but still alive( we think). But we don’t really see his house straight away. The jerk who built the garage is behind our barn but initially that was just an open field. Then we have the hoarder and while we can’t see his house but can see some of his junk and that’s where we’ve been putting up the fence. The newest neighbor’s ( around 3 years now), house sits at a diagonal and we only see the back of their house.

3. We have a lot of space outside. I need space around me and this house has lots of usable space.

4. The kitchen is small but functional and when we moved in we gutted the kitchen and replaced everything. So 28 years later it’s still in good shape but we do need to redo the counters. But it works for me and I have no clutter in there.

5. I love the sunporch and sit out there almost every day at 4pm for wine time. It’s the one space B built that actually has no problems and as you know, if you read my blog, we replaced the 4 windows last year and that was so worth it. I’m thankful for this lovely space with plants and sunlight streaming in.

6. There are only 2 bedrooms but they work and our bedroom is just the right size. The area where my office is and now the cat room too was used as a bedroom for my son at some point. He now sleeps in the Tuff shed studio. That was our homeschool classroom and is insulated and has electricity. I’m thankful we have that extra space for him.

7. Our floors are wood and I prefer that to any carpet. We have an area rug in the living space. I’m thankful I can vacuum the whole house in 10 minutes tops.

8. I’m thankful we were able to put a new roof on a while ago( maybe going on 5 years now). It was expensive even for such a small house but we were able to afford it.

9. I’m thankful we have a wood-burning stove that keeps us warm.

10. As we have become more minimalist and have gotten rid of any excesses our space feels more open. And I love my white Ikea couch. It’s showing some age now( it’s probably 10 years old) so I’m not sure what Ikea couch I’d replace it with but that’s not anytime soon.

11. Having one bathroom is a challenge but it’s still a bathroom. When we were in our trailer in Foresthill we had an outhouse so indoor plumbing is very nice. Of course, we were young then and it was all fun then. So I’m very thankful for a bathroom with a clawfoot tub!!

12. We have a big old barn that does hold things we don’t use all the time, mowers, weedeaters, tools, etc. It mostly has my son’s tools and hobby things. ( Way too much for me!) B’s Triumph is stored out there too and the prepper pantry is on one wall.

13. I love that I don’t need curtains on the windows as no one is close enough to see in. I do keep curtains in the bedroom but only to keep the cold out.

I’m sure there are lots of other things but that’s a start.

Simple Sunday

Another rainy Sunday.

I went to the gym in Auburn(Anytime Fitness) and did the treadmill and weights. Then I went to Safeway for some groceries to tide us over till we do Costco.

So far the menu planning for the pantry this week is:

Cheese/chile tamales from the freezer( used up the last 4) with refried beans and salad

Beer Brauts from the freezer( the last pack) with peppers, sauerkraut, canned baked beans( my shelf stable beans I canned, and Boca burger for B.

Chickpea curry over brown rice with broccoli( using up broccoli)

Tofu burgers

Chicken noodle soup/ lentil veggie soup

I’ll see what else is in the freezer and add a few more meals. I probably can’t get thru all February but I know I can do another week at least.

I’m back making some sourdough and have done a few loaves already. I plan to freeze 1/2 of each loaf so we have bread ready for toasting or grilled cheese.

I’ll see what else is in the freezer and add a few more meals. I probably can’t get thru all of February but I know I can do another week at least.

I’m back making some sourdough and have done a few loaves already. I plan to freeze 1/2 of each loaf so we have bread ready for toasting or grilled cheese.

There’s nothing on the agenda this week so It’ll just be normal stuff. B did book us a reservation at Napa RV in a few weeks. There are full hook ups which is always a treat and that’ll give us a chance to take Rubi out for the first time this season. It’s only 2 nights but it’s also only an hour and a half away. Maybe with towing. We really enjoyed our stay there last time and knew we wanted to go back. Unless there’s a really terrible storm we’ll go even with a little rain.

The Flylady zone is the kitchen if you want to do Flylady. Just set a timer for 15 minutes and declutter, wipe and clear counters, be sure there are no dishes in the sink or drainer, tidy shelves too. Just do what you can in 15 minutes and then do it again tomorrow. I have a laminated sheet that has my chores for the kitchen and I off each one when I’m done.

Friday things

I just got back from swimming and the pool was busy when I got there and then emptied out by 8am. Maybe I’ll consider going at this time. It could be that all the people that work have left. It’s definitely busier at 7am. Traffic was very heavy heading to Tahoe( East bound) but I just went slower than the crazy Bay area people in their Audis ,Teslas, and Lexus’.

I have a few chores to do this morning but nothing too major. I started doing our taxes and got them mostly done. I just need the interest from the mortgage statement so I’ll print that out this weekend. We use the standard deduction so it doesn’t really matter but it asks for it so I’ll do that. Our taxes are pretty simple so it didn’t take long. It looks like we will owe a very small amount!

Tonight we plan on ordering a pizza so that’ll be nice( expensive but nice). It’s nice to take a break from cooking.

Yesterday my son took the day off from work and we went over to Folsom to the outlet stores. Well, it was just the Levi store. I only wear Levi’s and wanted a new high rise pair. I was actually trying to get the original 501s but I would have needed to get a men’s size in order to fit and the clerk said probably they wouldn’t fit right so I got a different pair that still had buttons in the front. We’ll see how I like them. I do have trouble finding jeans that fit right and that’s how I ended up with Levis. I did order a pair of Old Navy jeans that were on sale but I’m not sure I’ll keep them after they get here( next week).

I started reading ‘ Still Life’ and couldn’t get into it. I guess some people really love it but I didn’t like the narrative, plus it was written in a weird way. Oh well, I have a bunch of books on hold at the library but nothing has come in yet.