Happy Summer Solstice and Simple Sunday

The heat has been brutal. Today we’re still topping out over 100 degrees. By tomorrow it should at back to the 90’s. The garden is suffering and most of our veggies are not too happy. I’m not sure what we’ll even get. The tomatoes are sad looking. The gopher has gotten most of the pepper plants and I don’t even see a zucchini plant out there. I’m not sure how to plan the garden if we’re going to have such heat, water shortages, and gophers. 😦

Happy Father’s day to Barclay!! The best Dad ever!! So much fun over the years!

Today I will continue with looking at cookbooks. I already have another 4 ready to go. Then the Flylady zone is the bedroom. I’ve moved a few things out of the closet and there is more shelf space in there now.

I still want to rearrange where I put the red Fiestaware. Right now it’s in the teak bookcase on a shelf. I’d like to get it underneath in the cabinet. One empty shelf idea or at least some white space on a shelf.

The kitties are getting bigger and more rambunctious. We have another appt for mamakat but last time she ran out of the cage so I’m not sure what we going to do.

I have my doctor’s appt Wednesday and my labs should be there. I do want to talk to him about a few things like would it be worth getting a Velcade shot once a month? and my sleep pattern is terrible. I have interrupted sleep every night. If I take Ativan then I can get about 4 1/2 hours straight. Then what about my watering eyes? I’m assuming that it will get better. And of course, the neuropathy. It never gets so bad but it still does get worse as the weeks go on. And lastly, what about my IBS and having a rough day usually the day after Velcade on the last round of the month. Oh well, he’ll probably just say that’s chemo. 😦

I’ve ordered the brackets for the kitchen shelving and then we are planning to put up 2×10 shelves. These bracketts are the same I’ve used on the other wall and are quite nice, hand forged and all. I’d still like the ikea pantry but since it’s been a year and a half since they were available ,I’ll just move forward.

Simple Sunday

Today is a Costco day. We needed coffee and that’s always the ticket. Plus the Starbucks is on sale with $5.00 off a bag which is excellent. We got most everything except we couldn’t find the Aveeno cream on sale and they didn’t have printer ink for my printer. We used our Costco rebate and so the final tally was @ 200. Pretty good for us.

This week Flylady zone is the kitchen so I’ll do that tomorrow unless I start a little later. I have a dentist appt tomorrow for a dental cleaning but it’s not till 11am so I have time to do the kitchen zone.

It’s way cooler today and very early summer like. We put up the screen tent thing yesterday as the mosquitos are starting to come out. We had a nice BBQ with some Trader Joe’s pre seasoned Shawarma chicken. It was pretty tasty. There’s enough for leftovers for lunch or dinner. I also made a chickpea salad with olive oil and oregano from the garden. I sliced up some Manchego cheese in it too.

One of my absolute favorite bloggers was writing about some stoneware from England called Hornsea. I’d never heard of it so I went to Ebay and sure enough it’s a stone ware that is very retro and many pieces are from the 70’s. I loved it and may buy a small piece:) I especially loved the little creamer so that may be my first piece. Check it out it’s quite cool.

Well, besides starting Round 5 this week and the dentist not much else. I’ve been staining the fence and got about 3/4 of the way and ran out of the stain so I’ll need to get that. I may or may not start painting the garden shed.

I still haven’t completely decided about the Ooni pizza oven. I like the idea of wood fired pizza and I think I’d use it regularly but $300. is a lot of money. I guess I’ll keep thinking about it for now.

Simple Sunday

A cold but bright sunny day. I don’t think it got barely in the low 50’s. When we walked this morning everything including trees and bushes were frosted over.

I baked the Tartine walnut kalamata olive loaves and they turned out beautiful and delicious.

The above picture is my starter( Tart) and she’s really lovely.

Here’s my December menu plan. I fill in the regulars like Taco Tuesday and Pizza night and then see what is in freezer /pantry. I don’t make the menu on the day except for the regulars so like spaghetti might be listd on the 7th but was made on the 14th. It jsut depends. Holidays I do keep to the menu since that’s different.

Tonight though we’re having a frittata and that’s not even on there because I have an abundance of eggs. So flexibility is the key.

We( California) are on stay at home orders so even going to the big stores seems risky. I went down to our Holiday Market this morning and was going for milk and some other things and totally forgot the milk. Go figure. I guess I ‘ll go again in a few days. I did get 1/2 and 1/2 so that will suffice.

We just found out our neighbor has covid along with his lady friend. So that has me completely freaked as they don’t really go anywhere. He said( on Facebook) he thought it was Costco but I don’t know. Costco is pretty safe unless maybe he went when it was really packed. Scary:( Hopefully they will be ok.

This week we are in the bedroom zone if you follow FL. I did most of it this morning but I still need to dust and tidy up the closet some. I took all the Christmas stuff out of the closet and put it under the tree so the closet isn’t so stuffed.

So tomorrow night is the big conjunction between Saturn and Jupiter. I looked last night and it was behind some big pines so I’m not sure we’ll have a good view. I’m going out tonight to check again. I have an app on my phone that locates stars and constellations so I found them but they were not obvious to me. If you have a clear view I imagine it’s impressive.

This week is low key with Christmas and all. No appts so just the same old same old.

Simple Sunday

We finally have rain!!

We had to use umbrellas to walk but that was fine. Nobody was there but us so that’s always a treat.

I made some sugar cookie dough this morning and it’s in the fridge for a few hours to harden some. So I’ll start those a little later. I used an Alton Brown recipe and it was pretty straight forward.

If you follow Flylady, we are in the bathroom zone. I can finish mine in about 15 minutes as our bathroom is so small. I might add on a couple of extra tasks this week as well. I consolidated the Christmas ornaments into 1 larger plastic bin that B had bought at Home Depot. So that’s most of the Hallmark boxes and some felted animals when I use to put them out at Christmas on the nature table. I don’t do that anymore but they’re cute enough to keep for now. In the future, who knows? right.

So, as expected, my kappa light chains went up over 600,( high normal is 26.4) and the ratio also doubled( It was 74.3 mg/l ) normal high is 26.3. So Velcade will start in January. So since it’s 3 weeks on 1 week off, I’m thinking @ the second week of January and then a break the first week of February and so on. I guess we’ll have to see how it’s working as to how many rounds it’ll be. That’s a wait and see kind of thing. But one would hope, if it works on the myeloma, 6 months of treatment. Again, big unknowns since we don’t know how things will go. Disappointing but reality.

Tonight I’m cooking a roast chicken in my cast iron pan and I think I’ll make some buttered noodles to go with it as we are potatoed out from latkes. i wanted to get down to Krispy Kreme for donuts( you know to keep the cooking in oil thing going for Hanukkah:) but that may not happen.

B is actually going down for a doctor visit this week as I think they want to see him in person. I’m going to write a list of things for him to bring up because they continue to bother him. He is supposed to get his pneumonia shot and soon he will start revaccinating. I never did revaccinations as back in 2006 it wasn’t common then. Now, I think with autos it is. It is absolutely necessary with an allo transplant though as he had donor cells.

Well, I think I’m going to finish my Sunday chores and read some more of the Obama memoir. BTW, it is a great book and so full of compassion and insight. Definitely worth buying . One thing that really stood out to me was how many times he went to Walter Reed to see the wounded soldiers and how he would interact with them. I tried to look up how many times trump did it but I only found the 1 time shortly after his inauguration. I guess he couldn’t handle seeing the soldiers with one leg or arm or whatever. What a guy!:(

After Thanksgiving, and a Simple Sunday.

It was a lovely Thanksgiving with the four of us. My brother stayed home as he does work as a machinist around lots of other people. BTW, the company he works for made a number of the very specific pieces the Space -X used to go to the Space Station.Cool!

Update, on Saturday he stopped by for a pan of nut loaf and a plate of turkey with all the trimmings!! He’s a great guy who shares our political views and is outspoken about the corruption of Trump.

I had ordered the Diestel turkey breast and it was delicious. It was pricey, but worth. I have lots of slices left to freeze plus I plan to make a turkey wild rice soup.

Update: I think I’ll freeze the turkey since it’s now Sunday and we’re kinda turkeyed out:(.

Yesterday on our walk, 2 unusual things happened. We started out by the pond and a black cat jumped out of the blackberry bushes. One of his eyes was closed so we were concerned it was hurt. it was very friendly so we picked it up and drove home. I woke my daughter who tried to look at it but it squeezed under the kitchen counter. So we went back and walked in the park. On our last round we saw ‘granny’ goose( the last domestic goose at the park) limping. Her one leg had been injured. We were worried for her. I messaged ARD and told them and they said call animal control, which I didn’t do. This morning ‘granny ‘ wasn’t there so either she got taken by animal control or a coyote got her. Sad. At one time there was a flock of 20 geese and they were always fun to watch.

Back to the cat. So eventually it came out and wasn’t hungry and it looked like it was someone’s pet. And the eye wasn’t injured, as we thought, it didn’t have a right eye. B put it out on Nextdoor neighbor and within the hour some said it was our local hardware stores pet cat. So B took it home to the store. But it made us all realize how much we miss having a cat/cats.

Not much on the agenda for today. I may wander out to the barn and get the other Christmas boxes down to see if I want to use anything more. I’ve made a wreath with bay leaves for the front door. It has nice dark green branches/leaves so it looks Christmassy. I’ll probably go cut some cedar and pine branches also to make a centerpiece for the table.

Sunday morning:

off for our walk at 6am. It’s still somewhat dark and then it’s predawn. This time has worked out well. We’ve only crossed the jerk dog walker once so that’s a huge plus.

We still don’t have rain in the forecast but it’s cold in the morning( like high 30’s). I got an email alert from PGE saying we would have a high electric bill. I figured it would be since we use the space heaters off and on. Well, we may have to cut back on when we use them like maybe only in the mornings. This house doesn’t have any central AC/heat so we use the wood stove and then in the bedrooms small space heaters. I’m not surprised since we get this every year a few months of very high electric. I probably should just put that in the annual bills column. Yeah, I think I’ll do that. 3/4 months of high PGE which would be @ $1,000.

I don’t plan on making Tartine today so that will lighten my morning. I’ll get out my starter tomorrow for Tuesday/ Wednesday bread.

This week Flylady has 2 zones, the living room and the entry ways. My front room is fairly easy as it’s pretty minimal. It doesn’t take me more than 15 minutes to do the zone. I do wipe the tops of the Easton press as they are gold gild and do get dusty. I also do the windows and the mirror. We have a large Heywood Wakefield mirror in this room near the dining table. The entryways start on Tuesday which is Dec. 1. I’ve already changed out the seasonal decor to Christmas/ Winter. One thing minimalism has taught me is to use as much natural things for decorations hence the bay laurel wreath. Plus, I can keep that up all winter not just Christmas. I do change the outside twinkly lights from orange(fall) to blue( winter). We keep lights up year round as we don’t have outside lights so we put the twinklies on a timer to come on at dark till around 11pm and then again in the morning around 5:30 till 7am. It just helps with outside lighting.

We got a bumper crop of lemons from our one dwarf tree. This one of 2 bowls of lemons. I will slice and freeze some. Great for adding to water and then I thought I might look preserved lemon. Someone years ago, gave me a ball jar of preserved lemons and they were excellent on/cooked with chicken. Anyone have a recipe they use?

Well, off to start the day:)

Makin’ it Monday

I just passed 1252 posts on my blog.

Of course, I’ve had my blog since 2012 when the great decluttering era started and my journey with minimalism. Right now, it seems minimalism is taking a back seat because my houseplants are taking over. Seriously, I think I need to give some away. Plus with Covid-19 the pantry has exploded into the prepper pantry.  It’s all good though, everything changes. I’m certainly not filling up white space with stuff.

My Flylady routine hasn’t changed all that much since 2012 but some. When I first started with FL, I did all her recommendations. Then as they got done, I wrote out my list of things for each zone and that’s what I use today. Some people find FL too involved or restrictive, but I think the form is valuable if you own it for your own circumstances. If you are drowning in clutter and not getting the house in order, start with the kitchen sink as she recommends.  Keeping the kitchen sink clean and clutter-free of dishes really sets the tone for the whole house as odd as that sounds.

Our very hot weather continues and so does the constant watering the yard. We are getting some cherry tomatoes and cucumbers and zucchini which is nice. As a matter of fact, I’m planning on making a zucchini bread this morning.

Last night I made the individual quiches and they were good. I used the  Breville toaster oven and it kept the kitchen cooler than using the oven. I think they could have been cooked a little less.

Today is my basic Monday chores which are dusting, vacuuming, mop kitchen floor, and a general tidy up.

We had the logger guy come and pick up the huge logs on Saturday. What a relief they are gone. He charged $150 which was completely worth it to get them out of the back area. Barclay could have never cut them up.

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Simple Sunday and the best $15.00 I spent this year.

Hot!

A hot week in Northern California. I guess we will need the coolers all week. Fortunately, we can and do turn them off by 9pm. I got out in the pool on the floatie yesterday and it was nice.

Happy Father’s Day to B.

I made pancakes, scrambled eggs, and some veggie bacon. Plus fresh coffee. It was pleasant to sit out on the patio.

This week is the bedroom zone for those that follow  Flylady. I want to declutter the closet some and wash the bed covers. I do the sheets every Sunday but the covers only once every couple of months. The linen sheets from Ikea have held up well( they are a year old) and the cost is very reasonable for linen.

 

The best $15 I spent this year was for the Lodge crepe/ low side griddle pan.

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I bought this at Target so I could make crepes this spring. Now I use it for almost everything I used the other two cast iron pans for. I still use my vintage cast iron that I’ve had for 40 years.  When I was given these they were already antique. So I’m guessing they’re @ 80 years old.

It’s not at Target right now but at Amazon

It is a great pan for crepes, pancakes, chicken, tofu, and lots of other things that benefit from a small edge.

 

Tonight I’m going to make the Impossibe burgers with all the trimmings. Safeway has just started selling the block( looks just like beef). I’ll let you know how it is.

 

Simple Sunday

It’s been a nice week with really glorious weather. We’ve eaten dinner out on the patio and it’s been great. The mosquitos are coming out though so that’s a pain. Just when it’s getting nice enough to sit out after dinner, wham, mosquitos buzzing. I guess I ‘ll try and find the bug spray today.

The chickies are growing and going outside in a new cage on the grass but still coming into the dog crate at night. They have t least another month of going back and forth and then they will still need to be separated from the big girls for a while. Getting chickens is actually a lot of work. But by September we will start getting some eggs so that’s nice.

This week I have my doctor’s appt and I will be doing a video appt. I’m not sure how they set it up yet but should know tomorrow( Monday).

I went down to our Holiday market the other day when they opened( 7 am). Spent a small fortune but got some extra things for the prepper pantry. Ever since we moved to this area in 1975, I have been a bulk buyer. Beans, rice, honey, oats, etc. We had a small co-op in Auburn at that time and we could order stuff. We also did a buying club with what is now UNFI( That Barclay just retired from after 25 years). It was Mountain Peoples Warehouse then and you could order bulk things even dairy like cheese. Then a group would get together and separate out orders.  I don’t think they allow buying clubs anymore but I could be wrong. Anyway, that’s what we did. Somewhere after embracing a minimalist house, I started backing off on having a prepper pantry. I still would buy Lundberg brown rice and a case of tomatoes from Costco but I had been trying to back off it. Then all this Shit hits with Covid-19 and yes, I am back in buying bulk in full swing.

A prepper pantry though just isn’t bulk rice but enough food that could last you anywhere from 3 – 12 months. Now I don’t want a bunker with guns and food but I do want to build up my pantry.

Some stuff I’m putting out in the barn on the restaurant shelves( stainless steel). Extra dish soap, laundry soap, canned goods are going out there. Some packaged goods are going in bins to store. I’m planning on buying a food preserver thing that seals the contents of the bag but I want to wait and see what Costco’s looks like before I commit to it.

So far my plan is to have a dozen boxes of Pasta, a case of kidney beans, a case of cannellini beans, a case of refried beans, a case of tomatoes, and other smaller quantities of condiments, sauces. Mostly stuff I know would eat normally. I did buy 8 freeze-dried meals but I’m not sure about doing that again as that is not something we would normally eat.  I’ve been meaning to try one just to see how it is. Also a couple of boxes of tea and sugar. I keep some extra coffee in the freezer but in a shut down that wouldn’t last long. Maybe I’ll check into instant or freeze-dried coffee as a backup.

Right now the freezer is being eaten down and I haven’t bought a lot to replace things till I get to Costco which I’m thinking will be mid-May.

Dinners have been uninspired like spaghetti and sauce, meatloaf( I bought as I don’t know how to make a good one), rice and beans, grilled chicken, salad, and just normal stuff.  Tonight I am grilling chicken outside and will make a potato salad I think. I made a nut loaf with brown rice yesterday so I will serve that to B.

Well, life goes on, or as the chaos theorist in Jurassic Park says” Life finds a way”.

Flylady has two zones this week. Living room zone and entryway zone. I did the living room already but still need to vacuum.

 

Simple Sunday or same old same old…

We walked as usual. Lovely, early and no one around in the park. My favorite time.

Then I came home and put on jeans( which barely fit now) ugh:(, zipped into Auburn to go to Safeway.  No traffic except a few semis on I -80.

Safeway was not busy but there were no veggies at all, no dairy like yogurt, etc. I got most of what I needed. Ramen, bread, butter, cookies, deli stuff, salad pack, milk, cream, and some other stuff. But I was planning on bananas, cabbage, avocados, broccoli, etc. So I may go down to Holiday  Market later in the week. For now, we can have salad and we do have chard in the garden.  So all in all a good trip.  Most everyone had masks and gloves on but a few old men did not…. maybe they think the order from Placer Co. chief Medical officer doesn’t pertain to them like the imbeciles that are Trumpers protesting the sheltering in place order.  Darwin anyone??

Last night I made a split pea soup from the Palouse split peas. It was delicious. Palouse is a small family-owned company and I was able to get 5lbs of lentils and split peas. If you need these try ordering from them. They arrived very quickly and the price was @ $15 for the 5 lbs. I think.

Tonight’s dinner is unknown. My son wants to cook something so we’ll see. He’s a great cook and enjoys doing more gourmet stuff than I do.

The chickies are getting big and eating a bunch. We’re taking them outside and they are in a fenced area so they can run around. They seem to like that. They still need a heat lamp but our weather is supposed to warm up so they will move out to the sunporch this week.

Barclay’s labs have come back way better. Platelets have gone up and so did his hemoglobin.  The took him completely one of his drugs, Dapsone, so this may be why his numbers were dropping. So good news there. Also, UCD med center did give us a grant on one set of bills from last August. At least we think they did as we haven’t gotten any official letter from them but the billing shows the $1300 that was going to be due is not showing. Now only the last $500 is on there. So that’s cool, I hope.  Hopefully, there’s no surprise. I would like to have a letter that states that though.

The Flylady zone is in the bedroom, which, I’m about to get up and go do.

This week I’m planning on washing all the outside windows with the Outdoor Windex. You attach it to a hose and spray. I’ve been using this method for a few years and it works great.

 

My doctor’s appt is at the end of the month and I’m planning on it being a video appt. I’ll have to wait till I get directions on how to do it though.  I did read another Myeloma patients take on ratios and I think he was referring to one of the major Myeloma treatment centers, where one of the criteria is a ratio of 100. That’s what my doctor keeps saying but when my ratio was up in the 70’s I was in treatment with Revlimid. Oh well, mine is still under 10 so, that’s something I suppose.

 

 

Randomness…

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A bunch of random photos.

 

The top is the sourdough bread that came out PERFECT!

Next are my wood friends. These, of course, were my children’s toys but I have kept most of the Waldorf toys. I did pass on the Waldorf dolls and silks as over time they will deteriorate and so I did that quite a few years ago now.

Then my newest Catherine Holm. It’s all rusty on the inside but it’s for water on the woodstove and It only was $25.00. I’m not sure about the darker green but for what it is it’s fine.

We just got back from our walk and got there a little earlier and then dog walker showed up and as we were leaving the two women that are friends and SHOULD’NT be walking together. It really bugs me as they drive here to walk and they really shouldn’t be there but even more so they shouldn’t be waking together as they are not family. Oh well. :(:<<<

Today is just some housekeeping chores and maybe some gardening.

The zone if you follow is the bathroom. If you want to follow Flylady, you could go thru your shampoos etc and get rid of old stuff or stuff you’re not using. We keep ours to a minimum. Plus we have the smallest bathroom possible.

B has his labs today and then another video conference about his lowering Hemoglobins. A little concerning.

I’m missing Finnie and Ollie.