Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Tuesday – Leftovers

Tonight we ate leftovers from Sunday dinner.  I warmed up the extra pork gravy and added some fresh mushrooms and the leftover roast to it, then served it over hot rice. 

I love leftovers – scraps and snippets, odds and ends, bits and pieces.  In fact, I wouldn’t be offended if someone engraved

She used it up;
She wore it out;
She made it do;
Or did without.
And then,
The wear and tear
Did her in.

on my headstone.  Even though I didn’t grow up in the Depression and I don’t hoard, I do like seeing things all used up.

My daily list usually has some leftovers from the day before added to it.  It’s great because I never have to worry about what I’ll do tomorrow.

Another leftover I have is three Golden Corral gift certificates.  Some friends gave them to us but we didn’t get them used before our Golden Corral closed.  I have no idea how much is still on them – I’m thinking about $30 total, but I’m not sure.  I don’t see us getting to a town that has a Golden Corral in it in the near future.  If you’d like them, just mention it in the comment section and leave your e-mail address.  If there is more than one of you we’ll put your name in Calvin’s hat and draw a leftover Golden Corral winner.  

That’s what the 29th of February is to me – a day of leftovers.  All those minutes that didn’t get used up in 20011, 2010, or 2009 got put together and lo and behold, we get a whole new day tomorrow.  What a deal. That's better than pork gravy on Tuesday night.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Life in Our World – Speaking of . . .

Oh jeepers.  I mentioned I’m taking a writing class.  The instructor told us not to worry about thinking of a story.  She said, “Just describe a place.  Any place.”  So I described a place. 

Next she said, “Don’t worry about characters.  Just describe a character.  Any character.”  I described a character.

Next she said, “Describe your character in more detail by using dialogue.”  I did that, too.

In today’s assignment she wants me to combine everything together.  Oh no.  Nothing matches.   She told me not to worry about a story, so I didn’t.   I do not want to start over. 

I think I understand now how fantasy stories were created.   

Because of this class I had to learn about walruses – walruses talk and cry in my story and wear red-polka dotted swimsuits to diving class.  Walruses do not do that in real life.  

Because of this class I had to learn about imaginary friends.  Specialists agree that imaginary friends are very common in children, and usually extroverts create them more often than introverts.  That was a relief, because my character in one story is seven.  I was worried she might have outgrown an imaginary friend but specialists say they’re still common in seven year olds.  In fact, some specialists say that it isn’t too abnormal for teenagers to have them.  However, they all agree that if you still have them as an adult that is not normal. 

So while I am not finding this class easy or fun to write for, I am enjoying my research.

Speaking of research.  The other day Cali was thinking of a girl we knew a loooooong, loooooong time ago.  She wondered what had become of her and googled to see if there was any news.  Come to find out she’s a playboy model now.  Who knew?

Speaking of who knew, Dan got in a fight with the coyotes the other night and got ripped open.  Cali and Calvin treated him, but decided the wound was too deep and he needed a few staples.  I just remembered that I have a stitches staple gun up in my emergency first aid kit. 

Speaking of emergency, yesterday a student called and said one of his speakers was unavailable for a program he was responsible for and asked if I would pinch hit.  My topic was “Why I Love America.”  I said that one of the reasons that I love America is because it is a place where good men can develop and become great.  Like John Adams’ resoluteness, and George Washington’s deep spirituality and his ability to rally men, and Ben Franklin’s wisdom and people skills, and Samuel Adams’ bravado and courage, and Thomas Jefferson’s ability to write and inspire others, and James Madison’s genius.  Then I shared a few stories like these:

Abraham Lincoln’s first business venture failed and then he was badly beaten in his run for the state legislature.  His second business partner died leaving him with a $1,100 debt.  He failed to get an appointment to the U.S. land office, and he was beat twice vying for a seat in the U.S. Senate.  Once he was elected President, the South seceded from the union rather than submit “to such humiliation and degradation” as having him as their President.  His own political party even asked him to step down rather than run for re-election for the United States Presidency.  And yet, with all of that opposition against him, he fought with determination to leave the world better.  Or as he said, “I want it said of me by those who know me best, that I always plucked a thistle and planted a flower where I thought a flower would grow.” 

We were at West Point the week before Abe graduated, Grace and I were attending the military parade where the corps of cadets marched past the generals for inspection. Also standing near the generals were several old grads. One of the old grads was from the class of ’39.  He was pushed out onto the parade field in a wheelchair and sat next to the other standing dignitaries.  The band played.  The cadets, in mess-dress uniforms, marched out of the portals and onto the field.  After all the companies were in formation and roll call reported, the color guard led the parade past the team of inspecting generals.  The announcer asked us to remain seated until the flag passed directly in front of us.  I watched the soldier carrying the American flag draw near to the dignitaries.  They were all smartly saluting it.  No one was paying any attention to the old grad in the wheelchair.  He starting rocking, trying to get enough momentum to stand.  His legs weren’t strong enough to hoist him.  He struggled and struggled.  Just as the flag was passing before him, he got his legs underneath him and he stood as erect as those bent knees would allow and saluted the flag.  As soon as it had passed, his legs went out from under him and he collapsed into his wheelchair.  I love America because it is a country that recognizes the rights God intended for man to have and gives him freedom to become his best. 

Speaking of great things, Ande and Joe gave me Amazon prime which means free shipping.  In two days I had new ink for our printer.  Now I can create some things I needed a printer for.

Speaking of creating, Cali and Levin spent a major portion of the week here while Ray was traveling on business.  Cali sewed a new computer case and Calvin finished making a black powder gun.  Today they combined their efforts and made a new six foot shelf with large cast iron hooks to hang over the church bench in Ray and Cali’s entry way. 

Speaking of entry way, it’s time for me to go to bed.  That means exit.    

Cali and Levin as we went walking last night

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Life in My World – Visiting Hours

Tuesday Ray called and said he was in the area.  Because it was Valentine’s Day, he didn’t have any business dinner appointments and asked if he could drive up and take us to supper.  We had a Valentine dinner of steak and lobster planned and asked him to come and eat with us instead.  Good as dinner was, it was even better sitting on the couch and visiting with Ray after supper.  We watched this video blip of Levin no less than ten times.  Ray spent the night and left early, early the next morning.

Ryan and Haley (and Dan)

Friday night Haley and Ryan (niece/nephew) stopped by to stay with us on their way to Seattle.  They are fun to be with and have interesting things to say and are good listeners as well.  Besides, they laugh easily, too.  We talked about jobs, job searches, hockey, pinterest ideas, politics, books – the whole gamut.  We stayed up late . . . late for me, anyway.  Calvin and I had to leave early the next morning, but he wanted to fix Ryan and Haley a big breakfast of his homemade bacon before we left.  The next morning they got up early to visit with us some more even though they’d gone to bed late, and then did the breakfast dishes.

Ellie, Merlin, Calvin, me

Saturday morning we went to the temple to meet our friends Merlin and Ellie.  We went to a year of college with Merlin, and then after he and Ellie got married they were our neighbors for a very too-short, nine months in Idaho.  It had been years and years since they’d been here to visit, and even longer since we’d been to their home.  However, they have recently moved and that distance has been shortened.  One of the things that I love about Merlin and Ellie is they are genuine and comfortable.  I know it’s a trite phrase, but I always think “salt of the earth” when we’re with them.  Salt is a very valuable thing in a friendship. 

Merlin has a contagious laugh and Ellie is so pleasant.  As we were catching up, Merlin put his arm around Ellie and said, “She’s my hero.  I have a story to tell you.”  He told of a jury on which Ellie had recently served.  It was a grisly murder case.  After the trial and as the jury met to deliberate, Ellie asked her fellow jurors, “Would you mind if we prayed before we begin discussion?”  The jurors gladly obliged and several of the jurors later privately thanked her.  They were all overwhelmed with the responsibility of sifting through the brutal evidence.  

I don’t know which part of the story I liked best, Merlin calling Ellie his hero or Ellie leading her fellow jurors in prayer before making a judgment on the convicted.  (I told you they were the salt of the earth.)

Jesse, Bert's elbow and leg, Rachel, and Hydn

Last night I called my sister Rachel.  We talked and laughed for two hours, seventeen minutes, and twenty-two seconds.  It reminded me of when we used to call back and forth when our kids were little.  Phone calls were 28 cents a minute then and once or twice we spent as much on phone bills as we did on groceries.  Bless Calvin’s soul, he never complained and he certainly could have, but he seemed to sense my sanity needed Rachel's voice and stories.  Last night Rachel told me this story.

One of our basic psychological needs is to feel connected to others, visiting has certainly helped fill that need for me this week and I'm grateful for the opportunities. 

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Homemaking Tip – First One, Then the Other

It takes 10 egg yolks to make crème brulee and 12 egg whites to make angel food cake.  A few weeks ago I separated the eggs and made crème brulee one day, then put the egg whites in the fridge and made an angel food cake a few days later.  Neither recipe is difficult to make, nor do they take many ingredients . . . and they're good, really good.  (They're also a good way to use up all of those eggs you get when you raise chickens.)

Better Homes and Gardens Angel Food Cake

angel food cake roll with fresh blueberries

1 cup sifted cake flour
¾ cups sugar
1 ½ cups egg whites (12)
1 ½ tsps cream of tartar
¼ tsp salt
1 ½ tsps vanilla
¾ cup sugar

Sift four with ¾ cup sugar; set aside.  Beat egg whites with cream of tartar, salt, and vanilla till stiff enough to form soft peaks but still moist and glossy.  Add remaining ¾ cups sugar, 2 Tbsp at a time, continuing to beat till egg whites hold stiff peaks.

Slowly fold in flour mixture.  Bake in ungreased 10 inch tube pan at 375 degrees for 35-40 minutes or till done.  Invert cake in pan; cool.

However, my favorite way to serve angel food cake is in a cake roll.

angel food cake roll with fresh raspberries

  1. Line 11” x 15” baking pan with waxed paper, and spray lightly with cooking spray.
  2. Pour angel food cake batter into pan. 
  3. Bake at 375 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes. 
  4. On a tea-towel that is sprinkled with powdered sugar, turn warm cake. 
  5. Roll cake (and towel) into a log. Cool. Unroll. 
  6. Spread unrolled cake with whipped cream and fresh fruit, ice cream, or fresh fruit and cream cheese mixture (mix 8 oz cream cheese and 1cup sugar, add 8 oz of cool whip) 
  7. Roll cake back up with filling inside and refrigerate (or freeze if using ice cream as filler). 
  8. Slice and serve.

Crème Brulee

1 quart heavy cream
10 large egg yolks
2/3 cup sugar
¼ teaspoon salt

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. 
  2. Bring cream to a boil and set aside. 
  3. Whisk egg yolks, sugar, and salt until sugar is dissolved and mixture is pale and thick.  4.  Gradually and slowly add cream to egg-sugar mixture until well combined. 
  4. Divide custard among custard cups or ramekins. 
  5. Place ramekins in large roasting pan and add enough water to roasting pan to come halfway up the sides of the custard cups. 
  6. Bake until custards are set around the edges but still loose in the centers, about 30 minutes but may take up to 55 minutes (it depends upon the depth of your custard cup or ramekin).
  7. Let custards cool in roasting pan for 10 minutes and then cool at room temperature for 1 hour. 
  8. Cover custards and refrigerate 2 hours or overnight. 
  9. Sprinkle a tablespoon of sugar over custard and caramelize with cooking torch.  Makes 10 (1/2 cup each).

Monday, February 13, 2012

Twelve on Twelve of February 'Twelve

Ty and Michelle - Happy 203 Abe

Ty and Michelle - six to eight weeks more

Grace - first project with my new sewing machine finally completed
. . . a fun, new skirt for summer!
Abe - Getting ready for another exciting day of training
Ray and Levin - Levin doing his trick and holding on to his reins
Ray, Cali, and Levin - Ande came for dinner since Joe is gone
Joe - Ready to spend our first Valentine's Day apart.  Better luck next year . . . 
Ande - Joe is gone this week and I'm sick.
The best part of being sick is getting to watch TV.
The only thing good about your husband being gone on Valentine's Day
is getting the bag of conversation hearts to yourself
Calvin and Jane - Dessert
Jane - putting Sunday dinner in the oven before church
Calvin - "cleaning my rifle, dreaming of you"  (I have no idea how the rest
of the song goes because this is the only line he sings, over and over and over)
He's making a new gun and showed our home teachers
what he'd finished on Saturday
Trevor - my first modpodge.  Michelle helped.  I am a mastermind

Sunday, February 12, 2012

52 Blessings – Today

It’s Abraham Lincoln’s 203 birthday today.  He’s been a hero that has not tarnished one iota the more I’ve learned about him.  I’m grateful for a sterling example of patience, compassion, and integrity.  I think of his example often.

I’m grateful for Fast Sunday (typically the first Sunday of each month where Mormons refrain from food and drink for 24 hours and donate the money saved to help those who are in need).  I’m grateful for the perspective and inspiration that comes when I fast and pray for a specific purpose.  (Our Fast Sunday was today since the first Sunday of this month we had Stake Conference.)

I’m grateful for roast, potatoes, and carrots that are ready the minute you walk in the door from church.

Our hometeachers came by to visit today.  I’m grateful they take the time to visit us, teach a lesson, and be our friends.  It also means a good dessert.

I’m grateful for e-mail which allows me to make contact with everyone in our family at one time.  Even a letter can’t do that.

I had a good friend who died of cancer a couple of years ago.  I still miss her.  It wasn’t my friend’s first battle with cancer, she’d had it twice before, and because of those prior experiences no day went unappreciated.  Really, they didn’t.  Even when it rained.  She hated the rain.  Even when she hurt.  And she hurt a lot.  She was grateful each day for another to spend with her husband and five sons.  I’m grateful she taught me to not wish away one day – no matter what it had or didn’t have in it.

What are you grateful for about your day today?

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Life in My World – Week with a Full Moon

  • In addition to my other teaching job, I began teaching history at the Kimber Academy this week. Hence, my preoccupation with the Six Day War. In another week we start American History and I’ll be back on more familiar ground. The class has approximately 15 students aged 12-17. One of the fourteen year old students is ready to graduate and has already started college courses on-line. One of the twelve year olds has also started college English on-line.  It's exciting to see these kids so hungry to learn, and by taking the college courses on-line they can feed the hunger while still continuing to grow and mature within the safety of the family.  By the time these kids are mature enough to attend a college campus they'll either have one degree or at the very least a solid plan of study.  It’s an invigorating experience and the two teaching opportunities are challenging me squarely.
  • I played the organ at a funeral, and though it only took a couple of hours, I dreamt about it the night before so the experience seemed much longer. In my dream I played for a Jewish funeral and couldn’t recognize the page numbers nor the songs in the hymnals. The rabbi called for the song so I played by ear and my ear was very out of tune, which added to the mourners’ regrets. I got to the funeral in real life and found it was the same kind of organ on which I first learned to play. I smiled when I sat at it; it felt like riding a familiar bicycle down a dirt road and was a comforting feeling compared to the previous night's dream. As far as the memorial service, biographies are my favorite kinds of books, so even though I didn’t know the person well who was being remembered, I enjoyed hearing the stories and imagining what her life was like. 
  • I took the missionaries around to their appointments one day this week. One of the missionaries had just arrived in town an hour previous so our first appointment was her very first as a missionary. She was so eager and excited. It was fun to view her enthusiasm. 

  • Last year Calvin, Grace, and I had Valentine mailboxes that we opened each night the week before Valentine’s Day. Grace was excited to carry on the tradition with Abe this year, but he ended up leaving for training. I knew one of the best Valentine’s gifts I could give to Calvin was to tell him we wouldn’t be filling what he called the 'tunnels of love' this year. I was right. I had a fun time filling in for Abe and filling Grace’s real mailbox instead. Phil and Tim, the postmasters, always ask how the kids are doing. They only know them by their addresses, but are kind enough to remember details and ask about them. Because I had to be organized for Grace’s box, it meant the rest of the kids got their Valentine’s early, too. Who knew being timely could feel so good? I sent each family a chick-flick, popcorn, and milkduds to sprinkle on the warm popcorn. Levin got a book and promptly read it.  (I  wrote his name and address on the plastic cover it came in and mailed it as is.  I love mailing things in their original packaging.  It's so bright and colorful . . . and cheap economical.) 

  • I’m taking another writing class. When I signed up to finish my college degree on-line, I thought the majority of my credits would fall under family life. It turned out that more of my credits qualified for a writing degree than a family life degree. A writing degree requires lots of . . . writing. It’s laborious, especially when it’s a default major (education was my original major). This current class has me freewrite a lot. Freewrite is when you sit and dump your thoughts upside down onto the keyboard and see what sorts out in ten minutes. Ugga, ugga. How embarrassing. It’s like accidentally dumping your purse in front of a store clerk and wondering how in the world your underwear ended up in it. I also have to write a fiction story in this class and I absolutely stink at fiction. I’ve always had a great admiration for those who can imagine stories or hear melodies and wondered how they did it. I’m still wondering. Heaven help me and the instructor both when we hit the poetry-writing section. 

  • We made play dough this week and flavored it with cherry kool-aid. It smelled good enough to eat. This is my neighbor and sometimes he and his sister come over and play. Guess what his favorite food is? Celery. He will eat stalks and stalks of it and has ever since he was two years old. This time Calvin got him eating raw green beans too, handfuls at a time. 

What’s life in your world like this week?

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Thursday Thinking

Some websites say we have a new thought every 12 seconds.  Others say not quite so many, still others are certain we have more.  I have no idea, but here are a few things that I’ve been thinking about:

  • Moshe Dayan and the Six Day War.  I learned so little about history in school.  It’s a shame, because I love it and have spent the last twenty years trying to catch up and wish I had those extra twelve years of learning.  (Mind you, the school made sure I knew the capitals of the states, but placing the states correctly on a map was never expected.  I remember one afternoon our teacher said we couldn’t go out early to play baseball until we had more memorizing done.  He quizzed, “What’s the capital of Connecticut?” not expecting anyone to know the answer and thus proving his point.  [Now why we needed to know the capital of Connecticut I still don’t know, but lucky for the whole class my brother was serving a mission there.] I yelled out, “Hartford!”  I was the class hero for all of five minutes while we gathered our mitts.)  However, history is vital to me now and I never cease to be amazed at my ignorance: like my foundling knowledge of something as big as the Six Day War.  It still makes headlines 45 years later and ties into American-Israeli relations today, I needed to know it.   (No worries, I know the capital of Delaware.) 
  • Rick Santorum’s 3 state sweep.  I find it intriguing whenever polls and predictions are off by a large margin.  
  • “Happiness doesn’t always make you feel happy.” (The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin)  I have found great happiness in my roles in life:  wife, mother, homemaker, teacher.  But while I’m actively participating in those roles (changing a diaper, mowing the lawn, preparing a lesson, ironing shirts), I don’t necessarily think, “Oh boy, this makes me so happy!”  It is the sum total of those events that brings me happiness.  Happiness is often expected to bring pleasure, and while sometimes that is the case, it is not always.  Happiness is equated to so much more than pleasure; happiness is a sum total not individual integers.

  • How cute these little tins (and the tin that held one dozen of them) are offered by Pick Your Plum.  Alas, I thought on them too long and they were sold out when I did something about it.
What have you been thinking about?

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Homemaking Tip – Valentine Cookies

Cali told me about some double chocolate pomegranate cookies that she made. She said, “I think they may be my new favorite. They’re rich and then all of a sudden you get a splash of a pomegranate bursting. Even Ray (who doesn’t like chocolate) likes them.” I was excited to try them and was not disappointed. They were good.

Double Chocolate Pomegranate Cookies

1 cube butter (no substitute)
½ cup butter flavor Crisco
¾ cup white sugar
¾ cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
¾ cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
¾ tsp salt
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1 cup (I say heaping) pomegranate seeds

Cream butter, shortening, sugars, vanilla, and eggs. Beat until well mixed. Add flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix well. Add chocolate and mix well. Add pomegranate seeds and mix carefully. Bake at 350 degrees for 9-12 minutes.

I saw on pinterest to make two thumb indentations on thumbprint cookies instead of one to make a heart. Of course! What a great idea (and a whole lot easier than rolling sugar cookies). This is my friend Brenda’s recipe and it is one of my favorite three cookie recipes.


1 lb. butter (no substitute)
1 ¼ cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
4 ½ cups flour
Strawberry or Raspberry Jam
Powdered Sugar Glaze

Cream butter, sugar, and vanilla together. Add flour. Dough will be very stiff. Roll in 1 inch balls and make imprint with thumb. Bake dough at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and put jam in thumbprint. Bake another 10 minutes. Glaze while hot.

Have you got a favorite Valentine's Day cookie?

Monday, February 6, 2012

Monday Memories – Love, Love, Love

There are lots of love ideas floating around the internet. In fact, I’m excited to share a couple of recipes with you myself on Wednesday.

Valentine’s Day was an anticipated day at our grade school. A week before school, each student took a plain shoe box to school and the teacher covered it in paper – usually pink, white, or red, but every now and then someone would request a yellow, black, or blue one. Then, during Art, we decorated the covered boxes with pipe cleaners, glue, glitter, and crepe paper.

Every student took a class list home to help them spell the students’ names on the valentines (and make sure no one was forgotten). Our class had seventeen students. We were a big class. The class older only had nine.

At home, my brother and I would sit at the kitchen table and write our valentines. We’d stick two conversation hearts in the envelope with the cards and lick them closed. The next day we took them to school in a brown paper lunch sack. Before heading out to the playground, we dropped the valentines into the slits made in the homemade boxes.

On Valentine’s Day, mom put a box of candy on our breakfast plate. Then right after the afternoon recess at school, the room mothers brought cupcakes or cookies and we ate them while we opened our valentines. It was a sweet and simple holiday. Cupid and his arrow was cute and all, but he didn’t mean anything. Valentine’s Day was for loving everyone.

And that’s why I often think of this as a valentine’s story:

Winslow Homer was a great American artist.  Many of our great Civil War paintings came from his hand.  In fact, Bill gates paid $30,000,000 for one of his paintings – the highest price ever paid for any American painting.  But Winslow Homer wasn’t always an artist. 

Winslow’s father was a practical man and did not think art a wise profession to follow, so Winslow apprenticed as a lithographer.  Winslow’s father lost his job, and though Winslow was miserable and hated his job as a lithographer, he kept it to help his family.

After his five year apprenticeship ended, Winslow decided to try it as an artist.  He saved up enough money to give him a few months to try painting.  He worked very hard to get his first picture finished and then took it to a store to sell it.  He wrote his brother a letter that said he’d done his best on the painting and had given it his honest effort.  He said that if the picture sold he would continue to paint, if not he would go back to the lithographer and content himself. 

Winslow waited for two weeks before he got the courage to go back to the store that promised to try and sell his painting.  He was too nervous to look inside, so he kept walking until he had completely run out of money.  Finally, he went into the store and the storekeeper said, “Oh, I’m glad you’ve come.  Your painting has sold and we would like another!”  Winslow was thrilled.  Overcome, really.  He wrote his brother and told him of his good fortune.  He drew more pictures and delivered them to Harper’s Weekly, the noted magazine of the day.  They admired his work and contracted him to illustrate for them. 

Winslow would have never gotten the courage to paint without that first picture selling.  He never found out that it was his brother who, after reading Winslow’s letter, came many, many miles to buy the painting which gave Winslow the encouragement he needed to succeed.

Love, love, love. Pink, blue, red, white, yellow, green. They’re all the color of love.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Thursday Thinking – “The time has come,” the walrus said, “to talk of many things . . .” (Lewis Carroll)

Walruses.  Not every day you think about walruses, but I’m doing an assignment and they are the subject.  I had no idea they are nearly 4,000 pounds or that they eat between 3,000 and 6,000 clams in a sitting.  I also didn’t know they blow the clams off the ocean floor and then suck the meat out of the shells (can you imagine a vacuum with that kind of power?).  I learned that their mustache hairs have nerves in them so they feel, and that they use their tusks as ice picks to give them leverage as they pull themselves up out of the water.  I’ve been quite fascinated studying them.  I can imagine a story of a little walrus that goes home after she’s failed in diving school, and as she walks in the kitchen there is her mother stirring a big pot of clam chowder.  (Can you tell I used to read Bread and Jam for Francis a lot?)

Collecting information for this assignment reminds me of the hippopotamus report I did back in junior high. All I can remember about that report is that a hippo head is so heavy that if he is out of the water for very long he has to rest his head on a rock. (I have no idea if that notion is really true as it’s not like you see hippo rock-pillows for sale to substantiate it.)
EurosThis American Life often keeps me company while I’m jogging/walking.  Recently, I’ve been listening to the recent podcast about the creation of the euro and how that relates to the fall of the economies in Greece, Portugal, etc.  Interesting stuff, especially if it’s true.  I like world events when they’re explained in words that I recognize. 

(I wonder if I’m becoming a cynic – what with questioning hippo and euro facts in the same blog post it’s making me wonder; for all I know maybe walruses only eat 2,000 clams a meal.  Hmmmmm..... I don’t like being skeptical.  I think I’ll just believe what I’ve been thinking about.)

Lastly, I’ve been thinking about where to hang this chicken wire frame (photographs and memorabilia attach to the wire with clothes pins). A bunch of us had a good time making these frames the other night and I had planned it for the family room, but the color is better in the dining room.

What about you?  What has been on your mind?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Homemaking Tip – Simplest Salsa I Ever Made

 I served this at a luncheon last week and friends asked me if I would send them the recipe.  I explained it's not really a recipe it's just a can of tomatoes with green chilies, some chopped fresh cilantro, and some sliced green onions.  It's easy.  It's healthy.  It's good.

Sometimes in the summer when the garden is producing if I want to make this salsa fancy I add fresh tomatoes and peppers.  Then it's a recipe.