Imbolc


Imbolc or Imbolg, also called Saint Brigid’s Day, is a Gaelic traditional festival. It marks the beginning of spring, and for Christians it is the feast day of Saint Brigid, Ireland’s patroness saint. It is held on 1 February, which is about halfway between the winter solstice and the spring equinox. Historically, its traditions were widely observed throughout Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man… Wikipedia

· Imbolc is a pagan holiday celebrated from February 1 through sundown February 2. Based on a Celtic tradition, Imbolc was meant to mark the halfway point between the winter solstice.

February 2nd is cross-quarter. I always feel the earth slightly shifting. Perhaps it’s the sap starting to run in the trees or possibly the sun’s angle. Right now we’re getting light still in the afternoon at 5:45pm and walking in the morning, predawn is 6am. I love when this change happens.

I had a good Dr. appt. Nothing new to report. My increase of 3 points is still very low and he actually had gone back and looked at when my numbers started doubling. So at one point, it went from 90 to 180. So that’s what I won’t let happen again and he’s well aware of that. Still, he’s the medical oncologist and knows what he’s doing. But it was a good drive into Sacramento with not tons of traffic just the normal.

I had thought of going down to the pool this morning but will wait till tomorrow. Driving out 2 days in a row is a lot for me. So Friday will be my swim day. I’ll probably go to the gym on Sunday then.

The pantry challenge is winding down as I am running out of ideas. I will check the freezer this morning and see what I can cobble together. I still have plenty of shell stable meals so I may do a couple of them. I know I have some salad stuff to use up today.

Thankful Thursday:

That I have an oncologist who knows me and is attentive.

That it’s sunny out even though it’s cold.

My husband who does SO MUCH around here and is always willing to stop at the store or drop things off for me( returns).

That I feel good overall and love swimming and going to the gym and that I CAN do it.

That we get SS and that almost covers all our bills including still having a mortgage:( . Then I’m thankful our kids pay ‘rent’ and that covers the rest , food, misc, etc.

I’m so thankful they both have excellent jobs and love them. We never got the job thing right( not for lack of trying) but first, in the mid 70’s there were NO jobs that we could get( plus affirmative action knocked Barclay out of the job pools with the US Forest Service. and always we resorted to some kind of self employment. He did Shiatsu massage for years and I did the whole ‘spiritual’ healing/counseling mumbo jumbo. Later we opened the metaphysical bookstore in Old Town Auburn but that was in the late 80s.

Lastly, I’m thankful Barclay is healthy again!!

Frugal Friday

We’re finally getting sunny days. It’s still very cold(32′) this morning but at least there’s sun!!

It’s been a good week. Barclay had his port out and that all went well. It was almost 4years to the date he had it put in. Lots of blood transfusions.Whew, what a story that was. But he’s 100% better and has no lingering GVH issues.

I had my annual Well care check with my PCP. It was fine although maybe a slight waste of time as I didn’t have anything to discuss and he didn’t have a lot to say. Oh well, it’s fine. I did say I still had some pressure in my left ear and he just said to go see the ENT doctor. Er, okay then.

After that appt, I went down to the Roseville gym and then the library. I also swam on Wednesday and it was busy but I did get a lane. Near the end of my swim, some guy came and shared the lane.

This morning I’m making some sauerkraut and doing a general tidy-up. I’m making a pizza for dinner and need to defrost the dough. Last night I made my first ever meatloaf and it came out really good. I did follow a recipe and I suppose that does help. I decided to make this since I had a lb of local pork sausage I had bought at the farmers market this past summer and as part of the pantry challenge wanted to use it up. I also had some organic ground beef to use up too. I topped it with my canned BBQ sauce and it was excellent. The pantry challenge is going splendidly and I may continue into February. There are 11 more days in January so I’ll decide then. I do plan on doing an Azure order in February so that will be some pantry restocking.

I got the new Marie Kondo book from the library. What a waste. It’s mostly repeat stuff but there’s so many photos of her. It seems the book is really about how many photos can she have taken of herself.

And here’s a shot of the sauerkraut wilting and about ready to go into a jar with the fermenting lid on.

This was one head of cabbage. It does shrink down.

I haven’t spent a lot on groceries this week except $80 at Trader Joes. Since I was going in for a few things I added some extras like pita bread for falafels, OJ, micro greens, and some other random stuff.

I also tackled washing the couch covers and saw that one corner at the bottom was ripping so I will need to get a new cover eventually. I’mgoing to pull some embroidery thread out and sew it for now. I think these white covers are over 5 years old probably more. I’m not ready to buy a new couch so a new cover will be fine. Next time I go to Ikea I’ll check it out.

Getting ready for camping 2023

This would have been the week we were in Refugio. We canceled due to the cost of gas. ( gas is around $6.00 a gallon here but in the Santa Barbara area it’s probably higher. We both agreed that we didn’t want to add to the cc right now with the other things that are still on there. Plus, we felt we had done it last year and it was great but we didn’t really feel like we needed to go back there. Santa Barbara is always a draw for us but that’s still 30+ minutes away from Refugio so it’s not like we could just pop in. Anyway, we’re both ok with the decision.

My goal for 2023 is to go to one new place to camp and explore that area. I’d like it to be within 4-5 hours of driving.

So far for 2023, we have New Brighton booked in March and Wrights Beach in April. Both are 5 nights and that’s a nice amount of time. I think we’re going to book Napa at the end of each of these if we can get in. I’ll check that soon. My goal is to not drive more than 2-3 hours a day unless we are on an extended trip. I still have hopes that we can get to the Southwest, and then Pacific North West but with gas prices, we need to be budget-minded. I think I want to have a dedicated savings for travel and then that money will be in there for gas etc. We don’t spend a great deal generally once we’re in a location. So it’s really gas and the campground fees. We love the places we go to regularly so that’s all good. I mean Tahoe is my favorite place and where I want my ashes spread after I leave this earth.

Barclay is off to buy the concrete paint in a different color this morning down at Lowes. We decided to go with an earth tone in darker brown. Let’s hope we like it. Sort of an expensive mistake with the gallon being $50. Oh well… Then he’s going to pop into Winco for a few things. I think shopping at Winco has really helped my grocery budget. I can’t remember the last time I went into Safeway. Also, not running down to the Holiday Market for bits and bobs also is a money saver as it is definitely more expensive. I’m probably spending more at the farm but since it is produce just picked I’m ok with that. Last week I got potatoes, 2 cabbages, lettuce, spring mix, a leek and ?( I think it was some broccoli) it was $20. So pricey but ok.

I’m going to prep more apples this morning and get them ready for applesauce. I’m not sure I’ll cook them today but I’ll see how I feel when I’m done.

This time of year always is difficult for me remembering when I had the compression fracture in T 10 and didn’t know what it was or why. It was November 2003. Then later, in the fall of 2005, I was getting ready to do the SCT in February but was getting heavy duty chemo during this time. So difficult memories for me. Then Barclay’s MDS happened right about now too( early November). It’s an emotional time remembering these periods. Even when my last relapse was hitting numbers way too high, that was November of 2020 and I started chemo in January 2021. So lots of sad and difficult memories. Of course, I’m an optimist so right now things are stable. I’m doing well, Barclay is well and our kids are healthy and happy. So that’s all positive.

Simple Sunday and we got RAIN!!!!

We woke up to rain and more is forecast for today, tomorrow, and Tuesday. The Mosquito Fire is still going but probably this is the boost the firefighters need. Yay. We walked with umbrellas but it was only a drizzle by then.

I started some minestrone for dinner in the crockpot using the cranberry beans from Ranch Gordo. Plus lots of veggies, onions, garlic, tomato sauce, and water. I think I might make some cheese toast on the side. This week’s menu will probably include some chicken, tofu, rice, and maybe a pasta dish. I reordered from amazon the freezer containers ( which were definitely worth it) and so I want to do some lasagnas and cheese enchiladas. I’ve tried freezing the mac and cheese and it just doesn’t freeze well. ( my version). I think you need to use Velveeta or maybe evaporated milk. Homemade mac and cheese is really easy. There’s a blogger on Youtube that thinks Wincos mac and cheese is real ‘home’ cooking. I don’t think she’s ever made homemade, probably too much work.

My arm is still sore from the Omicron shot but no ‘real’ reaction. I kind of felt off but that’s about it.

Tomorrow, I plan on going to the gym although if it’s raining too hard I won’t. Roseville is usually milder than here so that’s positive.

This week is the bedroom zone and closet. I will move my canning jars out to the garden shed as I’m done for the season except for applesauce. I’m planning to over to Apple Hill near Placerville to get apples, probably 20lbs. I’d like to get some heirloom apples but I’m not sure that’s what they have. There is a farm over in Petaluma that has heirloom apples but that’s 2-3 hours over there. Then I would like to put up the winter curtains but then I thought maybe I’ll do a between season one in a light linen. I’ll check if Ikea has any.

I have my appt with Dr. Laptalo on Thursday which happens to be B’s birthday. Not sure what he wants foodwise but usually the birthday person chooses their favorite meal.

Well, that’s a wrap.

Project: Cooking thru my cookbooks or else…

I think ina garten is one of my favorite chefs. Most all of her recipes are things I would make.

I like looking at her books for inspiration not just in food but how to serve food and often she adds a directory of where to get items.

The Paris one is really nice as she has a list of where to go in Paris for certain things. Not that I’m going to Paris but I still like reading about it. I got most of the these at the pet bookstore for a $1.00 so an inexpensive form of entertainment.

Our weather has turned and it’s much cooler today with a high around 91. I can live with that.

Barclay went to his PC yesterday and he gave him a shot of some sort of anti inflammatory( not cortisone) and I guess it seems to have helped. He also got an xray but it only showed some arthritis, so that’s not the issue. It’s still the sciatica. Hopefully it will improve all week. It’s hard to be in pain.

Simple Sunday …and so glad that the Robert E Lee statue is gone.

Yes, these civil war statues of monumental size ( very big, towering) do represent the what the south was trying to perpetuate: the SLAVERY of BLACK people. No matter how you look at it the civil war was about trying to PRESERVE a way of life and livelihood. Keeping BLACK people slaves did just that. No matter about the idea of taxation or that the North was somehow complicit. What matters and why taking down these statues matters is that they REPRESENT that slavery and that conscious of WHITE supremacy.

I’m glad that both the Lee and Stonewall Jackson are gone and good riddance. Hopefully, with all the protests since George Floyd’s murder we have move forward a little.

The heat is unrelenting here in Northern CA. Last night we didn’t get below 80 degrees. Very tough and can’t really do a whole lot. We should drop back down to the 90’s this week sometime.

I went to Safeway early and then the pharmacy to pick up a prescription for B. Apparently, while doing TOO much, he pulled a muscle or it’s sciatica is stressed and he’s in pretty bad shape. He went to see a PA but that was a waste so I want him to go back and see his PC on Monday or Tuesday. All he’s doing is taking pain meds and laying on the couch. Not good. Plus pain is the way the body says something’s wrong, do something. Well, Fuck this, it’s always something!!

The Flylady zone is the bathroom and I’ll do that in it a bit. I actually did most of it yesterday but I didn’t do the shelves.

I haven’t been cooking at all. It’s too hot so we’ve been having sandwiches and cold pasta salad and whatever we can put together. Today is the same. I have no motivation to cook, so probably some sort of sandwich or salad again.

I walked this morning and it was warm but not overpowering. AH showed up after I had done one round so at least I had one without him. It was nice.

This week I’ll go to the pool once or twice. It’s a ways to go but the swimming is so great that it’s worth driving 20-25 minutes. I don’t go do anything else even though I ‘m right near Winco etc. I decided early on, when I’m swimming that’s all I’m doing. No stacking errands on top. So far that has worked out.

I sold another book on Ebay. For now that’s all I’m going to list. It’s kind of a pain for a $10. sale. Still a few bucks is a few bucks that goes in the travel fund.

Well, better get a move on then.

Velcade, Round 4, shot #2.

I drove down to Rocklin yesterday and had my shot. I was out again by 10:20 and it went well. Sometimes the injection stings some and yesterday it did. Other times I barely feel it, so who knows.

From there I drove up to the Walmart in Rocklin which is right on my way home and picked up my order. They didn’t have the propane bottles we needed for camping so we’ll need to get them somewhere else. Then I went into the nursery side and bought 2 clay pots and 2 orchids. For some reason getting clay pots now is like winning the lottery. They only had 2 on the shelf. Oh well, I’ll keep checking but Home Depot also didn’t have any.

I took my Dex after lunch and rested. Geez, Dex is so weird. Oh well, my daughter made a nice stir fry with tempeh. It was good. Yesterday I experimented with making jasmine rice in the Staub and it came out great. I love my Zojirushi rice maker but wanted to try this as an alternative. The nice thing is that it is half the time . 15 minutes on a boil and then 15 minutes rest. The other method is an hour. It’s nice to have the alternative.

Today is just take it easy and do a few things. I want to air out the bed covers on the line. And move a few more things around in the closet.

We finished the bedroom painting it looks amazing. I’m very glad I screwed up and started the touch up as I wouldn’t have really know how bad it was( well I guess that’s relative. )

The stove hood debacle continues as it wasn’t working unless the bathroom fan was on which I said”No way, am I putting up with that”. I said hire an electrician, people do it all the time. But he managed to get it hooked to something else?? and now the bathroom fan isn’t working. Did I say just hire an electrician??Well, he is pretty handy and always figures out a solution. We had most of the wiring was redone when we moved in but there were some that the guy didn’t do for some reason. ( he wasn’t a real licensed electrician although he did know a lot).

I hope the tar paper can go on the garden shed before we leave on Sunday but the shingles will need to wait. Most of the trim is going on too. It looks good and I think we will like the extra storage.

I have another Goodwill run to make tomorrow but i will have my daughter help. Last with her helping it went really quick plus I couldn’t lift the monitor anyway.

Tonight my son cooks and I’m not sure what he planning. Maybe I’ll check the freezer but I know I have lots of salad stuff.

Plus, the most exciting thing this week is he gets his Covid shot tomorrow. Hurray!!!!

Spring Refresh

Another beautiful day.

Today’s our no walk day so I’m going to get started with my Monday reset. Dust, windex mirrors, vacuum, and do a general tidy up.

I used feta which is traditional. But I did like the addition of pine nuts so I added those. I also did more layers than she called for.

A few of my Vintage Easter cards

When I did the Antique Flea markets many years ago I love selling these old post cards. many of them had the original stamps and were written to people.

Here’s the Simply White trim on the door and today I’ll work on this part of the wall. As you can see this was the outside wall that was all rebuilt when we remodeled 26 years ago. I plan on switching out the light for one of those gooseneck industrial lights which I think will work there.

A couple of more bunnies. That marble eggs is something that came from Barclay’s mother. I think probably from when she was a girl. We have never kept much from her as, well, besides she never sent us much, we just didn’t get along. Or I should say she didn’t get along with her son,B, or me for that matter. She was raised very wealthy, on a sugar plantation in Haiti early on and then they moved to NY. Later her mother, moved to Sarasota Florida. Very wealthy. I guess the hippy, alternative son was too much for her. This was from the woman, who with her second husband, BArclays step father, had houses moved because she didn’t like them so close to the road,. Then later they bought a maple syrup farm in Vermont. That was the one place they lived that I did love but the one time we went to visit, it had to be 1980, they also had raised a herd of some kind of small black cow for meat. She named the cows after her kids. Weird ?? Huh?? She joked ‘Barclay ‘was in the freezer. Good thing we were vegetarians.

Well, enough down memory lane. I need to go do the living room zone. BTW, Thursday starts the entryway zone as April 1 is Thursday.

Simple Sunday

A lovely Sunday walk this morning without the jerk, who showed up yesterday after a 2 week hiatus. That’s ok we just ignored him even though he was walking in the middle of the path and we had to walk single file when he went by. It’s not worth the psychic energy anymore to even deal with it. We just went on our merry way. But it was a very pretty morning at the park this morning. We’re pretty lucky to have at least this one trail that is paved. There isn’t anything else like it at all around here. The closest would be Auburn which has one park with a paved trail otherwise it’s Folsom or up the hill to Truckee that has amazing trails all paved.

From there I started working on the nut/cheese loaf for Thanksgiving. I ended up with enough for 2 loaves and one half size one. I put them in the freezer till Thursday morning. I use the recipe from Greens. I’ll try and post it tomorrow.

Then I cut up the loaf of Tartine and put that in the freezer and started a new batch which I’ll do a slow overnight rise. That way I can cook it tomorrow morning.

I put the Costco chicken carcass in the Instant Pot to make broth. That’s still cooking. I also started a Crock Pot of pinto beans for dinner. Costco had the green chile cheese tamales which are my favorite so we’ll have those with pintos.

Tomorrow B has his IGIV. It’s in Roseville so I’ll take him and Z will go pick him up since my daughter works on Mondays. Z works too but he can take it as his lunch break. Hopefully, that will help his energy which is still pretty low and lagging.

I finished everything for Christmas. Really, don’t get too excited, as we only have us to buy for and I keep it small. I will send off something to my sister and give my brother some money. For us, I have books, a couple pairs of jammies, an Elton John album my son wanted and some other misc. Generally, I get stuff we need in the clothes dept, books, something fun and something that is a want.

Hanukkah is early this year, Dec 10th, but I’ve decided not to do any gift things and we’ll just light the candles. I like the idea of the light illuminating the dark and we need that right now.

Flylady zone this week is the bedroom. I finished it today. It doesn’t take very long since it’s pretty uncluttered in there. I did wash the comforter though and my daughter put up the new shoji screen for the one window. It keeps the cold out amazing.