Saturday, April 19, 2008

Stuff & Nonsense....

Well, I did NOT get to ask at the school yesterday about summer school for Tay. By mid-morning she was looking very green around the gills, and said she felt like she was going to puke. *sigh* Not sure what was going on. I quite honestly thought maybe she'd caught that stomach bug back from me. Anyway, she came home & napped on the couch on & off all afternoon. I did leave her alone long enough to go do my grocery shopping.

While I was at the store, I ran into a friend of mine from my school days. Tia was one of my best friends back then. One of our core little group, in middle school. Into high school we all kinda split off, but still remained friends for the most part. But, Tia and Amber joined band, Becky left state when her parents moved, Melissa joined drama but hung out with a group of gamers & "losers", Alisha was a stoner, and I tended to hang out with Melissa and her friends more often than not. (For lack of others to hang out with, as I didn't belong to band and therefore wasn't really "in the loop" and certainly didn't want to sit with the stoners all lunch and breath their foul cig. odors.) Still.... Occasionally you'd find us all sitting at the table together at one of the lunches we had together, hanging out as if nothing had ever changed (except for Becky leaving, which was obvious and irreperable).

Anyway, Tia is up from Wasilla with her hubby and kids for this weekend's "Outdoors Show" at the Carlson Center (one of the rinks where Tay practices/plays hockey, and where the UAF Nanooks play their hockey games when they're in town). Her hubby is assisting a friend of his in demonstrations of some product or another. It was neat catching up with her for a few minutes.


Tonight is another "Farmgirl Get-together", this time at my "friend" Sarah's house. Sarah and her daughter actually babysat Tay a few years ago. And before that, they adopted a cat from us when we realized Tay was too young & wild to treat a kitten appropriately.

(Tay was all of 4 when I found this litter of feral kittens crossing the road without their mama and climbing the small hill across the street atop which sat a little sewer & water pump-station shack. There were 5 of them, Mama had been taken by her owners when they PCS'd, unknowingly leaving this litter of kittens behind. They weren't more than 6 weeks old. I caught them and adopted them out to folks at church. We'd intended to keep one, a pretty little blue-eyed himalayan-siamese mix, for ourselves. But, as I said, Tay was too rough with the poor thing, so we decided to give her to another fam. from church that expressed an interest in adopting "Hola" if we decided we couldn't keep her. That's how Sarah and her fam. wound up with her.)

Anyway, tonight at Sarah's house we're going to learn a recipe for some reputedly fantastic rolls (one lady's "world famous" recipe), then see a "demonstration" of how to make an apron. Supposedly one of us will "win" the apron as a door prize at the end of the evening. *sigh* Oh well.... I don't honestly care if Mary and Sarah want to have these theme nights or not. I just enjoy getting together with a bunch of women who are interested in handicrafting and gardening and cooking real foods, and chatting. What I enjoy most, though, is that Mary and another of the women, Bonita, were school mates of mine. Bonita and I were decently good friends toward the end of our high school career, so it's neat having a chance to catch up with her once a month, without kiddo's tugging at us, or hubbies wondering when we'll be done chatting. Mary and I weren't really friends, though we didn't hate each other either. And while we've got some differences now (she's fundamentalist christian, I'm distinctly NOT anymore), it's still neat getting to catch up with her and Bonita once in a while. I feel like I can talk to them and relate to them a lot better than I have been able to with most anybody in a very long time. I've even been able to be somewhat open about my spiritual life with them both, which is something I talk about with very few people. I know Mary wishes I would "come back to the fold" christianity wise, but she doesn't get in my face about it as others would, if I outted myself. (Though, that said, I did ask both of them to not relate my spiritual leanings to others. It's still a small town and my dad still lives locally and I don't need him harassing me about my leanings or sicing his pastor on me.)

I made a batch of "Golden Caramel Bars" to take with me tonight for sharing. We all tend to bring something yummy to share between ourselves, for supper. The rolls tonight will be part of that.

Golden Caramel Bars (from a Betty Crocker Snack Lovers' Cookbook)

3/4 c powdered sugar
3/4 c butter or margarine, softened (butter!)
1-1/2 c all-purpose flour

3 c granola (any flavor)
3-1/4 c packed brown sugar
3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1-1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
3 eggs

Heat oven to 350 deg. F. Mix powdered sugar and butter in large bowl; stir in 1-1/2 c flour. Press mixture evenly into ungreased rectangular 13x9x2 inch baking pan. Bake until light golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes. Mix remaining ingredients; spread over baked layer. Bake until edges are brown, 18 to 20 minutes; cool. Cut into bars, about 3x1 inch. Makes approx. 36 bars.


Speaking of recipes, I DID try one from that "Depression Cookbook" that I keep meaning to share. Mind you I tried this recipe while I was sick, so I only wound up eatting one bite of it. Just enough to decide it tasted good, not enough to actually have eatten the stuff. *grin* But, the hubby and kiddo agree it's something to be made again. I also added a couple of ingredients not called for, left something out, and changed the proportions in a major component.

Spaghetti with Chicken

1 cup spaghetti (I used more like 3 cups, cooked.)
1 cooked chicken, boned and diced (I boiled up 4 chicken breasts, instead, and chopped the meat once cooked)
3/4 cup diced celery
1 small onion, chopped
6 pitted olives (I didn't use these as I did not want to open a whole can of olives JUST for 6 of them for the recipe.)
4 Tbsp grated cheese
1 can cream of mushroom soup and 1 can water (This is my addition to the recipe, was NOT part of the origional recipe.)

Boil spaghetti in salted water for 10 minutes. Dice chicken. Put 1 Tbsp olive oil in a frying pan. Add chicken, celery, olives and onion. Shake over med. heat till brown. Layer spaghetti noodles in bottom of greased 13x9x2 inch baking pan. Add chicken mixture. Pour blended soup & water over top. Then sprinkle with grated cheese. Pop pan into 350 deg. F. oven and bake till bubbly and heated through. Should not take long as all ingredients are already cooked. (Oh, and I reworded this a little bit since the other directions were a little more vague than I like them when I'm typing up a recipe.)

As I said, the general consensus was that this is a keeper recipe. *grin*


We woke to more snow, yesterday. Another 2 inches of thick, heavy, wet snow. By mid afternoon it had mostly melted on the roads. By evening most of it had melted off the roof again. I spent a good 15 minutes outside last night trying to keep the water from puddling up against the side of the house. The down-spout on the back of our house (right below the kitchen window) was frozen down under the snow from the last couple of weeks, and so the water from the down-spout was backing up to the nearest joint in the downspout, and was overflowing the joint, right down onto the siding and flashing at the bottom of the house. Had a nice little pond going there. I had to chip some of the snow & ice away from the bottom of the downspout so that the water could flow further out into the yard. I did a sufficient enough job that by the time I was done, it was draining further out. Unfortunately, one of these days that snow-pack is going to thaw, meaning that Scott or Tay or I will step off the deck onto what appears to be a solid pack of snow, only to break through to a pond of water underneath. Oh well.... Not much I can do to fix that. I just didn't want the water seeping down into the crawl-space underneath the house and causing water damage in the foundation of our house.

The weather forcasters are predicting that it's going to reach the low 50's today, and by tomorrow it'll be up into the high 50's and that yesterday's snow should be the last we see for the season. *snort* Wishful thinking. We could get snow well into May, if past snowfalls are any indication. I won't be counting out winter until Mid May. Oh, I'm hoping spring comes before then, mind you, but I'm not counting on it.


I know that a lot of people are noticing the prices of food going up. If you're paying attention to the news you may also notice that there are food riots happening in poor countries of the world. Recently some fellow bloggers have started posting about how a few select big companies are speculating on the hard times coming our way, and buying up stocks of food with plans to hold onto that food until the prices rise, then selling it off for higher profits to those hungry enough to pay what's being asked. It's criminal that these corporations (from what I gather, one of which has had some pretty crooked business dealings in the Iraq war and is not above making a quick buck or 10-billion off the suffering of others) are using the hunger of world citizens to increase the profits of their CEO and stock holders.

Greenpa, who I've only very recently started reading, and Sharon at Casaubon's Book blog have both posted more info about this than I can understand. If you're so inclined, read them, and maybe even write your legislators and senators in support of laws criminalizing the corporate profiteering from the hunger of world citizens.

Please.... Whatever else you do, pass this information on to others who give a rat's behind, and grow yourself some food.

Whether it's a hanging pot of cherry tomatoes or a chive plant in your kitchen window, or a full on garden. Do SOMETHING to experience growing food for yourself and your loved ones. And to protest the actions of those who'd make feeding ourselves impossible but for their gain.

AND, educate yourself and those around you as to what these big corporations are doing to profit off the pain of others in the most obvious way yet. Write your senators. One of the commentors on Greenpa's post regarding this, actually wrote up a form letter for those who aren't quite sure how to word the issue themselves. I'll be reading the form-letter in it's entirety today, and forwarding with my name signed to it, if there isn't anything I need to change (regarding my own opinion) first.

Anyway..... Just.... Do SOMETHING. I know that Dirk_Star seems to have stopped blogging, but one of the last things he said was to stop just talking about it and to actually DO something. I'm repeating what he said because it needs to be said again, and again, and again. DO SOMETHING. Please.


Ok. I've got to get some laundry started, and a load of dishes run. So I'll end this now. (As if it's not long enough already, huh???)

Oh, I forgot to mention, I hit my 300th blog-post about 5 posts back. Cool, huh??? Wierd to think I've posted over 300 times now.

Have a Blessed Day!


Connie Peterson said...

I think I'm going to need that "world famous" roll recipe. I keep looking for something awesome - I've found one that Norm really likes as well as Candy and Wayne, but I want something better all the time.

I will go to Green_Pa and see his letter - I agree - we need to DO something!!!

How fortunate for you that you can talk to a christain about your beliefs ... my friend Jody is a strong christian and she not only is interested in my beliefs, she is VERY close to being Pagan herself!!!! I have told her that she's the weirdest christian I've ever met, next to Norm!!!


Ashley Ladd said...

Congrats on your 300th blog post. I have aways to go to catch up to you.

I got my first cat when I was 6 and I cringe at how rough I was. I didn't mean to be or even realize I was till I think back.

The recipes look good and I'll have to try it.

Tori_z said...

Those recipes look good!

Thanks to my Grandad I've managed to convince my Mam to help me try and grow some stuff in our garden. We've got to clean the garden up a bit first, but at least I've got her thinking about doing it :)

whimsical brainpan said...

First off congratulations on going over 300 posts!

I'm glad you are running into and catching up with old friends. Who won the apron at the Farmgirl Get-together?

I have been paying attention to the news about the food riots for weeks now (though the media doesn't give it more than a mention or two). It scares the crap out of me. I am in no position to stock up or prepare in any way. I can't believe that nothing is being done about the situation either.

Celticspirit said...

Sorry to hear that Tay is sick again. I hope she is feeling better by now.

So how was your farm girl get together ? How did your Golden caramel bars go over? They sound really yummy.

Thanks for posting the Greenpa link. It's sounds very interesting and I'm going to check it out.

I hope you're having a good week Kati! :)