Five on Friday

  • Well, I ordered the upright freezer.

That’s the good news. The bad news is delivery is 3 months away. Who knows if it even will be delivered or I will get an out of stock notice. I think I must have gotten one of the last ones.  This Lowes upright was $719. From there they went way up at $1500 and higher.  So we’ll see. But I have a plan for this upright and feel it is a wise investment. Regardless of the pandemic, it’ll be nice to have a 6 months’ worth of freezer stuff and be done with it.

  • Our budget is done for August and all bills accounted for.  I put in for my LLS reimbursement. They have a new format on their website and it is very easy to use. If I didn’t get the reimbursement for insurance I don’t think our monthly income from SS would cover it. So I am very grateful for all who donate to the LLS.
  • We are planning a trip to Costco next week( 1st week of August). I don’t need to go to the store before then so that’s nice. I’m not planning on prepper stuff just normal we need like cheese, bread, olive oil, and some other random things.
  • Tonight is pizza night. Tomorrow I plan on BBQing a pork roast for the carnivores and will probably do a Field Day roast sausage for the vegetarian.
  • I canceled the extra Amazon channels of Brit Box, and Acorn for now as we have watched all the current shows we like. Maybe when some new seasons come out I’ll re-up. But that saves almost $15.00 a month. Then I saw somehow we were paying for PBS masterpiece too so I canceled that. We haven’t watched any of those channels for quite a while so I guess we were throwing that money away. Right now, we mostly watch Amazon Prime stuff and are currently rewatching Death in Paradise which is a good detective show.
  • I need a new book so I  may peruse Amazon for an ebook today.
  • I’ve decided to take a Facebook break. So I’m deactivating my account for a month. I don’t spend a lot of time on Facebook but I just feel it’s time to break away for a while. It’ll be interesting to see how I feel when it’s over.  Maybe my creativity will get sparked again.??
  • okay, I can count and this is more than 5!!!!

 

The week ahead…

First looking back over the last few days.

Still really hot here making it hard to go outside and do much except for early in the morning.

We picked up some oak barrels at Home Depot to replant some bamboo in. I love putting bamboo in barrels as it looks lovely.

Years ago, probably 20, I went to a Waldorf parents house who had golden bamboo. I dug up as much as I could( believe me, back-breaking). But that is what we have as a privacy screen all around the driveway area. But we put some in barrels as it contains it and makes a pretty visual effect. We have these two barrels outside our bedroom window. But the old barrels had deteriorated and were no longer holding water so they will be replaced. I’m guessing these were about the same age, 20 years.

Then Barclay’s labs came back with very high creatine( not good) because of the new drug Jakofi. We both kinda flipped out since the NP kept saying hydrate which he was doing obsessively. He will need to go in for an IV hydration if his numbers remain high. I’m really bugged by this as it all started with the Jakofi. It’s a great drug for GVHD but he’s still on other stuff and it’s hard on the kidneys. So I asked why not drop the Jakofi to 2 a day then 1 a day and so forth. No answer on that yet. So we were definitely bummed out for a few days. We’ll see how the labs are this week.

I had worked on learning how to butcher a whole chicken. I saw a youtube by ProCooks, who I like, and thought well, I could do that. It’s fairly simple just kinda involved so not sure I think it’s worth doing regularly.  Then I made Pioneer woman fried chicken and it was A LOT of Work. Not doing that again. Plus the kitchen ended up looking like a vat of oil exploded. It was tasty but I wouldn’t say great. I think I’ll stick to Southern-fried tofu.

Today is my Flylady morning in the LR zone. Definitely an EZ zone for me with just some deeper dusting and window cleaning.  Generally, it takes 10 minutes tops.

I’m going to get out the bread maker and make some WholeWheat sourdough. I just use the bread maker to make and rise the dough and then I bake in the oven.

Other than that an open week.

I’m making lists of my barn prepper pantry items so I can determine how many weeks/months of stuff we have.  I want to have a balance of pantry security and not going overboard with the ‘survivalist’ mode. I did order some dried Whole milk to put aside in case of either a power outage or unavailable at stores. If anything, I can use it in baking.

I found a book at our little free library, “Radio Free Vermont

. Pretty funny book and is contemporary as Trump is president. If your library has it, I’d recommend it for a fun read.

Here’s an interesting bit of news from our area. We used to live in Foresthill. From 1975 when we came to California till 1995 when we moved here( about 20 miles difference) with Auburn being in the middle and everyone’s main hub. ( mostly). So we lived near a road called Yankee Jims. Very remote and goes down a very windy, steep and treacherous dirt road( some of the way) to the North Fork of the American River. There’s a bridge there that, if I remember correctly, was one lane. Anyway, there’s parking on the side of the road for maybe 10-15 cars MAX!  Last weekend there were 313 cars down there, blocking the road both ways. So now the whole area is shut down and no cars can go in. WHY PEople!! So STupid!

Oh and another STUPID controversial thing. I was looking on Youtube for prepper pantry ideas so I clicked on this one called Alaska Granny. I thought it looked interesting. Younger than me, so not sure where the “granny “comes from. Anywho, this was right after the debacle with GOYA foods. BOYCOTT GOYA!! BUT, this lady does a whole vlog on GO OUT AND BUY AS MUCH GOYA FOODS AS YOU CAN TO SHOW SUPPORT FOR TRUMP AND THE OWNER OF GOYA.

Really??? oh well, takes all kinds. I guess she thinks Trump is cool or some deluded thing. Really, he’s sending federal troops into cities for political shit.  Really, people, he’s a narcissistic nutcase.  History will show this to be one of the worst periods of American politics.

OK, I’ll get off my soapbox now.

 

 

Friday Stuff

I’m not sure that Frugal Friday works anymore since groceries are much more pricey and I’m still buying to build up the prepper pantry.

I added some Bob’s Red Mill polenta to the pantry in the vacuum seal bags. Also in the Costco home delivery order got the 2 pack of Lemon Juice, Rosarita beans, and a case of their corn. I have a Costco Instacart order ready to go but will wait till next week.  That way that will take me almost into June. Oh yeah, they had SAF instant yeast and I also got some really nice powdered cocoa for baking.

 

For the prepper pantry, I’m making a list of dinners that I could put together from what I have to see how many months/weeks I would have. I have some combinations of dinners we eat normally like beans, tortillas, salsa, pasta with sauce, rice-based meals.  Mostly, I’m trying to have meals that we normally have so things aren’t weird like Spam for dinner:(  From the freezer, I am adding some meals like chicken, or organic beef, but that would really be stockpiling unless I bought a 1/8 of a cow from a farmer. If I knew someone that did that I would consider it. Right now, I’m good with Costco’s organic ground beef and chicken.

In other news, Barclay is continuing to have GVHD with intestinal stuff and skin rashes. His doctor ordered a new drug call Jafaki.  The drug is enormously expensive and the co-pay was coming in at $1500. a month. ahh, there is no way we can pay that now we are on a fixed income with no extras coming in. Our Medicare prescription plan had it for slightly less. So he talked with the financial coordinator and UCD Medcenter gave us a grant for $7000 that is JUST for the Jakafi. Let’s hope this does the trick.  Tomorrow is his 1-year re-birthday and I would really like to have the GVHD be gone. Well, I guess we will see but at least we’re not going bankrupt from a drug cost.

Today we walked and it was refreshing. I have the pizza dough ready to go in the bowl. I also cut up a whole bag of Vidalia onions to freeze.  Last week I made the mistake of trying to make a larger pizza and it was not good. It was too big for my pizza steel and was a mess. It tasted fine but it was falling into the oven because it was too big. You’d think I’d learn:(  So this week it’s back to 2 pizzas.

I just finished reading Adam Savage’s ” Every Tool’s a hammer”. He’s the guy from Myth Busters.  Quite interesting.  Check it out.

 

 

Books, Lots of Books

Everyone on different blogs is talking about books so I thought

 I’d add some of my recent ones. Here’s the first stack from the library

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I really have enjoyed the Cat Sitter series that takes place in the Florida Keyes. Lots of descriptions.  MC Beaton is always a good read with Hamish.

The library series”Something Read something” was okay.

Joanna Fluke’s books are always good for some new recipes. The Aunt Dimity books take place in the Cotswolds and I love that area of England so… Not that I will ever go there in real life but that’s the joy of books and traveling in your imagination.

There were cookbooks in the load too but I didn’t get a picture of them.

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Some good cookbooks to look at and maybe find some new recipes.  Mark Bittman usually has some good recipes.  “Real food “is one used before. Some stuff is the same old same old but she does have good ideas to help you take a look at what you’re buying and eating.

I’m almost done with the Marcia Muller ” the Break”. It’s good and her descriptions of SF are great.

I walked yesterday and it was absolutely freezing( 27′). That’s cold for here. We don’t usually have temperatures like that. At least later it was sunny but still cold.

I went to the gym yesterday finally and it was busy with lots of ‘new’ people still. I only used the recumbent as my ribs are really sore from coughing which is kinda weird as I haven’t really had much of a cough with this cold.

Today I’m planning on going to the koffee klatch with the library friends. I guess our FOL is kaput and dismantling. Really sad since this group was responsible for buying the building the library is in now. Well, all things do change and this little branch went downhill after I left. I’m not renewing the website which is under my name and even last year I told them no one was even going to it but no listens to me. So now, I will just not renew it.  The money left in the FOAL fund is substantial so that will need to be donated to the library for materials.

I’m making another batch of marmalade this morning before I go out.

I’ve vacuumed, swish and swiped the bathroom and got out things from the freezer for the rest of the week.

Simple Sunday

Well, let me say right off the bat, today is not that simple and yesterday was a crisis.

Everything was fine until B put clothes in the dryer and then there was a loud pop. In the house, all the lights, appliances, space heaters were flashing. It wasn’t good.

My daughter ran out to make sure B wasn’t electrocuted and to turn off the power. He went to the main switch and turned off the laundry room but the house was still blinking everywhere. He turned off the main power to the house. All the power protector surges were fried. In fact, the one in my office area was smoking and melted.

THIS WAS NOT A GOOD SIGN. My daughter thought maybe it was something in our wiring but I didn’t think so.

After regrouping, he called PGE and in about an hour the repairman showed up. After checking lines to the house, he determined the main power line had come loose and caused the surges. He fixed it.

We lost the dryer, one space heater, the radio/record player and I think that’s it. Fortunately, we didn’t lose the TV, refrigerator, etc.

So today, we have to go buy a dryer and install it. Actually, I think B is going to take our son and go to Lowes. I ordered online so it’s just a matter of picking up at Will Call.(  I hope)!!!

So now to a Simple Sunday.

  • we have a nice chicken and wild rice soup for dinner plus a lentil soup for the veggie:)
  • I’m going to the gym and do some weights and treadmill
  • tidy the house and do the bathroom zone( Flylady zone for the week)
  • read, read, read…..I’ve read about 6 books in the last 3 weeks. This one is the new one in The Girl with the dragon tattoo series. The writer who took over is quite good. I also read the new Jack Reacher, Blue Moon, the new Anne Hillerman, The Tale Teller, The Tattooist of Auschwitz,  ( very sad but truly excellent), James Comey’s A Higher Loyalty, also superb and shocking stuff about Trump( what an idiot). I also read a couple MC Beaton’s Agatha Raison books.
  • walked this morning at 6:30 am and there was a nice, big moon.

This week I am on call for jury duty. I checked Friday and it said to check again. I really hope I get passed on.

Simple Sunday

It’s a lovely morning with cool temperatures. The next week does heat up but not till Wednesday.

We had a nice walk in the park although it is noticeably darker at 5:45. We may need to start going just a bit later.

Today is a gym day and then I need a few groceries for some recipes. I’ve really used most all the meat in my freezers and lots of misc. A few quarter bags of veggies got tossed. So it’s looking good in there. I made a slow cooker pineapple jalapeno pork roast and it was quite tasty. I also pulled out my bread maker and made the dough for some bread. Then I baked that in the oven.

 It’s also the bathroom zone which I’m just about to do. Other than that it’s sheet day so I’ll get those in the washer soon too.

The coming week isn’t too busy. Clinic and B’s labs on Tuesday. So we may plan an excursion to Tahoe for the day. A nice picnic or something for a few hours. B can’t be in the sun so we’d need to find someplace that has shade. Meeks Bay on the East side has nice big trees so that may be an option.

I went to the pet bookstore this week and got a good selection of books. I’ve finished 3 of them. One of them called”Dirt” is a funny compilation of different authors takes on housekeeping. It was entertaining.

Dinner is grilled chicken and a salad with some noodles on the side.

Five on Friday

Another good week.

The doctor’s appt went well and he’s graduated to doing clinic just once a week. That’s really great. His labs all look good and the prednisone is controlling the diarrhea. I’m pretty sure it was a mild case of Graft vs Host in the gut but it’s under control now. He will slowly taper off the prednisone next week.

I used the IP again and made polenta and the next night did chili. I guess as long as it’s under my Heywood Cabinet and not taking up real estate in the kitchen, I’m okay using it for certain recipes. Polenta in the Instant Pot is particularly good if you haven’t tried that. When you made polenta on the stovetop it is hands-on stirring for about 30 minutes. So this is a really great way to make it and it is very creamy. I put it in a loaf pan and chill and then cut in slices and fry with a little tamari and then I top with cheese.  So I’m glad I didn’t just get rid of it without giving it some time.  Time is an amazing thing!

I’m going to Costco this morning for a few things and to bring my receipt where I was double charged.  I feel kinda weird about it but I’ll try.

We’re adjusting to life without Bonnie. Rocky seems better than at first. He’s getting a lot of attention, so that helps.

I finished a few really excellent psychological thrillers by Dana French. ” In the woods” and ” Broken Harbor”. She’s a great writer but the stories are dark but compelling. I also picked up a few books at the book exchange at the Cancer clinic. First, this is a terrific idea to have a bookshelf for patients to pick up books and drop off. Kiwanis house has quite a few bookcases thru out their facility and I definitely used them. So I picked up Ernst Hemmingway’s ” A moveable Feast” which was published posthumously. I ‘ve never really like Hemmingway’s stuff but this was really great. It’s a collection of essays about when he lived in Paris in the 1920s. I would highly recommend it. It is a masterpiece of writing.  I’m interested in going back an rereading some of his other books.

I dropped off about 8 books including some very new books I had bought but really didn’t want to keep. Flylady’s new book “CHAOS” was one. And some others too.

We received the first Cobra insurance bill and it’s a whopper.  Part of the bill still has our son on for medical, but that will come off as of 9/1 when his Kaiser Permanente kicks in so there will be another very large bill in August as well. Big as in $1200. Yes, that’s big! But then it should drop by about $600, I think… we’ll see:(

 

A book giveaway.

I’m giving away my copy of “lightly  How to live a simple, serene, stress-free life” by Francine Jay.

It’s a great little book with lots of ideas for minimizing, simplicity, decluttering and more.

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To enter, Please leave a comment on why you’d like to have it.

I will use a random number generator to pick a winner and then will post that and the winner can email me there address.

The giveaway will be open until next Sunday, April 14th.

Simple Sunday

Well, it’s been a longish week.  Hot, Hot, more hot!!

There’s not much change for the coming week either.  I’m so glad we have an Intex pool. That was one of our better purchases since we both love the water so much. BTW, this newer model came with a sand filter so if you’re ever in the market for a pool that doesn’t cost a fortune these are a great value. This pump has kept the water crystal clear with some additions of shock but that’s expected.

I went to the gym and did weights.This morning  we walked one round in the park. I wore the boot and my foot felt ok. I won’t try and push to do it tomorrow. I was just happy to go and walk around once.  It has been discouraging not to be able to walk everyday but well life happens and it’s best to go with the flow.Healing my foot is top priority.  My other foot also feels like maybe something is tweaked. I do have a bone spur and osteoarthritis in both feet and that can be a cause of foot stress fractures. I hope that’s not whats going on.. I was going to check with my oncologist next time about whether the Zometa that I use to get for bone strength could help here.

A super fun find at the Goodwill was an Atlas 150 pasta maker. I got it for $5.00.  I’ve been looking for one forever. It wasn’t till I got home though and realized it didn’t have the clamp.  But I went to the hardware store and got a C clamp and that worked. I can get a replacement on Amazon for $20 so I might do that. Then this morning, viola!!! I made pasta.  So tonight I’m making the homemade pasta and then zoodles as we have some lovely zucchini in the garden.  I’m going to use a yellow and green zucchini.  Then I thought I’d made a garlic olive oil sauce and throw in a few shrimp.

So we will see how it turns out. Since it’s the first time making the pasta, I’m sure there’s a learning curve.  I’d like to try a lasagna with the home made noodles.

I decided to order Courtney Carver’s ‘ Soulful Simplicity’

and I have to say, I’m enjoying it. It’s way better that ‘ The year of Less’ and ‘Frugalwoods’.  So if you’re looking for some inspiration for minimalizing this is a good one. She does mention ‘God ‘ a few times so far but I’m okay with that as she does qualify it with ‘spirit’ or ‘heart’.  I also like Dave Ramsey and of course he does use lots of christian things but I overlook that for the content that’s being given.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friday Five

  • Yesterday my daughter and I took a huge load to Goodwill that was mostly my son’s stuff. Hurray!!!! Maybe the decluttering is sinking in for him. ( Probably not, but it was a good start).  Plus it was two Kirkland dog beds that the border collies just don’t use. The books I saved out of the drop to take to the pet bookstore as I’d rather support them.
  • Did the budget with B’s check and we’re on track to finish the credit card that we put Z’s spring tuition on by July.  Also, I finally paid the last of my Invisalign costs. So that was exciting. After the CC is done, I’m determined to finish the Santa Fe. It’s 2014 so, that’s 4 years of payments and I want it gone. If I did that by the end of the year I’d be happy.  I don’t see us getting another car for B’s work. Even though the company does do a stipend it would mean another car loan and right now, I don’t want that.
  • Retirement is looming for B so we need to be as debt free except the mortgage as possible.
  • My daughter and I went to the gym and then after the thrift store drop headed over for some tostadas. Yummy.
  • For dinner, I made baked tofu and then made a really yummy coconut curry vegetable stew. It was delicious. Plus I made a peanut sriracha sauce for the tofu.

Today it’s hot. So I might just hang out at home and read. My son lent me another graphic novel, TheWatchman, so I’m curious about it. He said it is the # 1 graphic novel of all time.

I might wash the outside windows with the Windex outdoor product. It actually works very well and you don’t need to wipe them when done although it does help.

Tonight is pizza night.

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Cheese and pepperoni pizza with basil.