Wednesday, December 21, 2022

There comes a time...

 when perhaps it is a good idea to put everything on hold and spend time with loved ones or just doing other things.  That's where I am.  So I will be here resting, reading, sewing or whatever I decide to do until after the new year.  

Here in the Great White North, everything is frozen solid.  The temp this evening is minus 8 degrees.  Snow and wind are headed our way.  

We don't need to prepare for the end of the world.  Preparing for cold and snow and wind is just important.  While others are lining up in the grocery stores, stocking up on whatever they need to get through the storm, I will be sitting on my cozy apartment with a cup of hot chocolate, watching the storm from the comfort of my recliner.  Your neck of the woods may have different weather related difficulties, but being well prepared is the same no matter where we are.

Stay safe.  Enjoy the holidays as much as possible.  Wishing each and every one of you a very Merry Christmas and a better New Year.

Wednesday, December 14, 2022

Just Checking In...

 There hasn't been much activity here in the Great White North lately.  I haven't been canning or dehydrating, but am more concentrating on basics like rice and pasta and sugar.  My groceries are delivered Thursday afternoon and there will be things to repackage and put away.  I repackage in Ziploc bags anything that comes packaged in cardboard or thick paper, like sugar bags.  I haven't had a problem with bugs here, but past experience tells me bugs like paper or cardboard - plastic, not so much.

I am nearly finished writing out the old family recipes and some of the stories associated with them, for my kids.  I still need to dive into my recipe box and find Mother's recipes for apple pie and peach pie.  

Each summer Mother would make at least a dozen apple pies using apples from our very small orchard.  Dad would bring home lugs of peaches from the grocery store and she would make about the same number of peach pies using part of the peaches and would can the rest.  She stored the raw pies in the freezer, stacking them one on top of the other, forming towers of pies.  We would bake them, one at a time, throughout the winter months.  When her hands became too crippled from arthritis to be able to continue this practice, she turned that task over to me.  To this day I love apple and peach pies.  Making them - not so much.  :) 

Here in Minnesota, for the last day or so, we have had rain, sleet, snow - rinse and repeat.  It is in times like these that I am more than happy I do not need to go outside.  That will be especially true come the weekend when temps here are supposed to drop to single digits.  Times like this I envy my friend in California who is picking oranges and grapefruit from the trees.  :)

That's all I've got for now.  Stay safe and warm. 

Friday, December 9, 2022

The Holidays for Old Folks

 This time of year can be a bit stressful for those of us with large families and limited income.  We worry about Christmas gifts for our kids and grands, without wrecking our budgets.  Here is how I solve that problem.

I have six grands, one grand-in-law and two great grands.  Because I don't know what gift would make each one happy, they get cash.  Teens in particular seem to like having extra spending money.  The little ones have something for the piggy bank that will eventually add up to a fair amount for them when they are older.  In order not to break the bank, I save a little here and a little there all year so I have enough set aside by December.

One year everyone got jars of my hot chocolate mix along with bags of homemade caramel corn.  But this year because health issues prevent me from doing large projects, my kids are getting hand written recipe cards that contain recipies from their grandmothers and a couple of aunts, all of whom are no longer with us.  There are stories connected to some of the recipies and I am including those, too.

Whenever there was a family gathering, my mother would make a cold shrimp salad.  At one of those gatherings I was fixing a plate for her and I asked if she wanted some shrimp salad.  She wrinkled her nose and said "Absolutely not.  I can't stand the stuff."  When I asked why she made it, she replied that it looked pretty in the bowl!  And that was Mother.  She loved 'pretty.'

Included is Dad's recipe for peanut brittle that he made every Christmas season.  His children called it "Dad's World Famous Peanut Brittle."  He almost always cooked it a bit too long so it had a slightly scortched taste, which distinguished it from other peanut brittle.  And that is how we liked it.

Mother's recipe for gingersnap cookies is there, too.  When growing up, my family lived in a big, old farmhouse with a large screened in porch.  We often had visits from relatives.  In the summer, Mother would serve her gingersnaps along with ice cold lemonade, all enjoyed on our front porch.

There are all sorts of ways to enjoy the Christmas season without spending a fortune.  All we need is a little imagination and to remember the reason for the season.

Saturday, December 3, 2022

Anyone besides me completely fed up?

Here's the thing...

I don't care what was on Hunter's laptop.  Nor do I care what percentage of ill gotten gains went to the 'Big Guy.'  I have no interest in who dines with Trump.  Who is banned from Twitter and who is not is of no interest to me either.

Every day one politician or another is bellowing about the wrongs being done by those in the opposing political party.  The next day those opposing are screaming a rebuttal to the accusations of the accusers.

Nobody seriously tries to change anything.  They would rather get their faces on TV and their pockets lined by special interest groups.  There is not even one politician I would trust.  If they were honest people they would not be politicians.

I will not be marching in the streets to protest anything.  That  changes nothing and these days is more likely to get me run over or shot.  Write or call my congress critters?  Nope.  Whatever makes anyone think the politicians care what we the people think.

I have come to a place where most of my alloted time on this earth has past.  There are not all that many days left.  I can think of no good reason to waste time worrying about what government types are doing.  They are going to do what they want no matter what I say.

What it comes down to is that many of us just want to be left alone.  Not by friends and family, but by those in power who think it is just fine to tell us how we need to live when they have not a single clue about what it takes to live a normal, everyday life. 

I intend to live out my days spending time with kids and grands and great-grands.  My pantry is full enough to feed my family for a long time if necessary, but I will continue to add to it.  There are quilts to sew and afghans to crochet and genealogy research to be done.  Those things make me happy.  The government has not even once thought about my happiness or that of the rest of us.  So they can just scream and holler all they want.  I am not impressed.  Nor do I care any more.

I am just done.  I refuse to comply with their silly edicts and mandates.  I refuse to bow and scrape.  I have only one Lord and Master and He doesn't live in DC!

We know they will not leave us alone.  Continue to prepare.  Continue to pray.  And perhaps if enough of us just say "No," that might at least slow them down a bit.