Xmas lights, kindling for Mom and added .25 mile to the dog walk.

November 29, 2022

I got a couple more of the Xmas lighting nets for decorating the front yard fence. The cashier at the store descibed doing an Arch with Galvanized fencing to create and Arch and laying the net lights over it for decoration. I don’t think I’ll do that this year but it sounds like it would make a great decoration and be fairly cheap to do. I bought some small stakes for stringing lights.  Last year I used some little garden fencing to hold the lights. This year I pilled that border fence so string the lights was a bit of a dilemma until the the light ground spikes were found.  I love how so many Xmas lights are LED and take a lot less electricity and don’t generate as much heat as the old Xmas bulbs of the 1970’s/80’s.  Not starting a fire or using a ton of electricity now is a great thing! 

Mom stopped by and got a box of kindling as she has problems cutting kindling. Her hands just don’t have the strength or endurance to fill up a kindling box. I don’t think Mom enjoys cutting kindling.  She is not the most patient person and I think cutting kindling is just a tedious job that has to be done rather than a job were you can let your mind idle from life and just concentrate on cutting wood. I sort of like cutting up kindling as I have to pay attention to what I’m doing so I don’t cut myself, but my brain is free of worry about the economy, politics and other stuff that fills the brain. I added Portion cups to my fire starter set up. I love using paper egg cartons for fire starters but I’m out of egg cartons.  While cupcake papers worked they were not optimal. The answer is waxed portion cups that are used in restaurants to hold sauce and ketchup, etc… I can buy 250 of these cups for about $4.50 about the same price as the cupcake papers and I think they will work better for starting fires in the wood stove. Now the paraffin wax has jumped in price since it is a petroleum product but overall I think I can buy wax occasionally through the year and make plenty of fire starters.  My neighbor got in a small bit of firewood so I took over an egg carton of fire starters. They have an open fire place rather than an enclosed wood stove but I think it is great they have an alternate heat source. 

I think I found the store that sold me the winter gloves I love so much. I think the glove is a Wells Lamont brand with 100 grams Thinsulate liner. There are gloves with a 40 gram Thinsulate liner but I have not used those gloves. These are the best gloves I have every used for keeping your hands as warm as being in mittens and you can do work with them in winter. Amazon has them but I don’t buy from Amazon.

The doggo and I added another block to the walk so we are up to 1.25 miles. It is not a speedy walk as the doggo must stop and sniff from time to time. But we are building up our mileage slowly overtime. I could do most of my shopping via walking. I avoid the busy streets while walking my dog but it is amazing to see how close most of place I shop in relation to my House. Could I live without a car. Perhaps for day to day living. If I need lumber, a large bag of pet food, not so much!

EV cars and the thing the PTBs never tell you is the cost to charge the EV compared to a gas vehicle. Based on an average cost of .14 cents per Kilowatt hour. It costs about $16.80 to charge an Electric vehicle. What they don’t mention is charging that vehicle at home costs at least $16.80 every night or 2-3 times per week. Lets be nice and it only cost $16.80 over night 3 times per week. That is $50.40 added to your existing electric bill every week! $200.00 + every month. I fill my gas tank twice a month and $100.00 is the most I pay for the month. I’m disabled and don’t work, so your gas usage might be different. That does not even count the cost of buying an electric car for $50 to 100 grand.

I’m not against alterative energy. I think Hybrid cars have great potential. I don’t think fully electric cars are viable for most of the USA. Electric Trucks that haul 40 tons is unworkable when a Ford electric truck struggles to haul a small load a 100 miles. In the North east most homes use Nat. gas or oil/Diesel for heat in winter and the price is skyrocketing. They can buy electric heaters but electricity cost also are higher.

It sucks for these folks but the pain is not enough for them so far. You voted for the Green new deal/ Build back better and against pipelines and new electric lines in NE. Plenty of people said NE needed an upgraded grid and more pipelines for gas and oil. The politicians said no to all of that.

Obviously the average person in the USA is not hurting bad enough to vote for a change. Fine you are on your own .No, I am not obligated help morons.


Get beef now, Railway strike and Winter weather gear.

November 26, 2022

Very low prices for beef at the local stores here in the valley. $2.99 for sirloin steaks and $1.99 for 70/30 hamburger is the lowest price I have seen in months. I think what is happening is there is a glut of beef on the market right now since many ranchers sold off cattle because of the cost of feed and water the last 6 months of the year. I expect the price will go much higher next year so now is the time to get that freezer stock upped while we have these low prices. Sundance at the Conservative Tree House says food inflation has probably peaked and while the prices are not coming down they probably won’t go up in the next few months. I have been seeing things like cake mixes stay around a dollar per box for several weeks running. Most prices in the grocery store seem to be stabilizing at a higher price but the prices are not going up. Not great news but not awful news for the food budget. 

It looks like the Railway strike might be on again around the middle of December. The time frame gives the Unions a lot of leverage but I don’t think the workers really want to lose a paycheck or 2 going into Christmas. I suspect there will be another compromise to hold off any strike until January and then the unions do a hard strike/walkout. Just a gut feeling on my part as I have no info on how the strike might work out.

It looks like winter is here to stay in the valley. We got a few snow flurries moving through every couple of days for the next 10 days and the Ski slopes are opening up for the season. A good start for replenishing the water for next spring, but last year we had a great snow pack in December and it was dry in January and February.  We will have to see how much snow/moisture we get in those months before we get to excited about the summer irrigation season. 

I moved all of my winter coats out to my entry way coat hooks and all of the spring jackets are in the coat closet. I have one poffy down type winter coat but I prefer layering sweat jackets, sweaters, down like vests rather than wear on coat. I replaced some of the worn work gloves but I thought I had bought a certain winter glove with a Thinsulate lining. I don’t have any on hand and I have to use the older gloves that have holes in the leather. When I find this glove again I swear I’m going to buy at least four pair for my glove stash! 

All of my leather gloves got a coating of Heavy Duty LP which is like mink oil for water proofing your gloves and preserving the leather. It is also made in Idaho. LOL Get out those snow boots and make sure they are in good repair and if you have a favorite boot you like you might add a back up pair this holiday season. A lot of people focus only on food and perhaps water for prepping. Buy a a lot of tacticool gadgets and forget about the mundane items like shoes/boots, good work gloves, clothing like undies and socks. It is a great time to stock up on these items on sale. Heck I never would have thought about my stryofoam coolers as a  prep item but they sure came in handy when my fridge died and I need a place to store my frozen items for a day or two while I replaced my broken fridge.  I can say the frozen Cyropacks I used were bought as a prep it for keeping food cool if the electricity goes out. But they worked great for this minor fridge dying problem. 

Some people think that prepping is a waste of money. I doubt it is as large a group after the Covid panic. Many emergencies can be small and personal and not at a regional or national scale. I was a bit lucky as I had another fridge, but having large coolers and Ice packs frozen ready to go was not lucky that was prepping and doing the work ahead of any potential emergency. 

I had though about buying another fridge, but what I really want is another freezer for vegetables. A chest freezer is cheaper to buy and cheaper to run off electricity. I don’t like the idea of Smart Appliances that are connected to the internet or monitored by the electric company via smart meters. I know you can’t really get away from that imposition but I don’t think you should make it easy for the PTBs or any one to hack and shut off your appliances. The convenience of a smart appliance is not worth the security risk. 

I think supply disruptions will become the norm in the near future. The world is changing and the WEST and USA are not all powerful on the world stage as we make very little of real value to the rest of the world. Rather than being a shining city on a hill the USA has become a petulant bully on the world stage led by a man descending into dementia. I still love my country and I have some optimism we might correct the ship of state. I have to be honest about what we have become as a nation.

How do do we fix it. You start at the local level just like the leftist/progressive did and you never stop fighting just like the leftist did. The progressive started in the 1870’s in the USA. We would be incredibly lucky to turn back to the Constitution in 50 years of cleaning out local, state and federal politics. This change won’t happen overnight and you have to be in it for the long haul and not an election or two.

What can you do as an individual? You might not be political but you hate the direction of the country. Disengage from the consumerism of the USA. Don’t vote yes for school raising property taxes that only pay the unions and administrators and do nothing to improve teaching kids the basics of reading writing and math. The kids are not that dumb the teachers are that bad. Honestly any parent that can run a check book register or Excel spread sheet would be a better math teacher than most teachers in schools. You want to teach a kid fractions/geometry teach him/her carpentry. Todays kids are not stupid but they are ignorant and don’t know how to think for themselves. It is our fault as we have failed these kids! When cooking a simple meal on an oven and not ordering Uber eats of using a microwave for a meal. We have failed as Parents and teachers. When baking bread is to difficult for these adult children. we have failed as a society.

I had a Zoomer as an internet friend in Ohio and the Deracchio/wind storm hit his area and power was down and he had no way to cook food. His answer was call up a local pizza shop for a pizza. that also had no power. I convinced him to buy a small butane stove so he could at least cook up some ramen and maybe some bacon and eggs. Don’t forget coffee and tea using a French press and some boiling water.

A little butane stove top works great for cooking. They cost about $30.00-$50.00 and a 6 pack of fuel cost about the same amount These cookers are safe indoors. propane cookers are not generally safe for indoor use.

Fridge dies on 22 Nov. Change out fridge 23 Nov.

November 25, 2022

It is almost a cliché of a major Appliance dying during the holidays but I had it happen this Holiday.  The old fridge was on it’s last legs and I knew it was a matter of time before it finally quit working. In some ways it was not so bad since it was cold outside I could put most of the refrigerator items in a cooler and set it out on the porch. While I lost a few items that completely thawed I had enough room in my chest freezers to save the stuff still frozen or partially thawed.

I checked around the internet to see the price of new fridges and it would cost at least $625.00 or more to replace the old fridge and get it delivered. I just paid off my credit card and I really did not want to put $600.00 dollars on the card. I moved the beer fridge from my shop into the house. The beer fridge is a little bit smaller than the old fridge but it is several years newer the the fridge it replaced.

The first thing to do was get out the old fridge and clean up the area, which was messy and dusty. The wall plate of the electrical out let was cracked so I replaced it while I had the area cleared. The doorway was about 1/2 to narrow for the frdge to fit so I had to take off the doors. I do not have a hand truck but I used a couple of small furniture dollys to move the fridge out of the kitchen and into the backyard. After I emptied the beer fridge into another cooler I blew out any dust and dirt, wiped off as much dirt as I could outside and then moved the “new” fridge into the house. Guess what I had to take the doors off that fridge to move it into the kitchen. The entire job took 3-4 hours total including about an hour for the fridge to sit for while after moving and then the time for it to cool to the correct temp.

I was very tired and sore after this job but the good thing was all of the food for Thanksgiving fit into the fridge and this fridge freezer gets really cold. I have solid ice in the ice cube trays in just a couple of hours and in the fridge portion was so cold my milk did not defrost overnight. The frdge portion was to cold as my drinking water pitcher had a skim of ice on it after two days, so I turned down the cool dial.  Mom brought over her hand truck for Thanksgiving and I moved the fridge out for trash pickup. Gosh a freon appliance is $60.00 to have the trash guys haul away but the old fridge will be gone. Overall I think the “new fridge” will work out great. It is full at the moment with Thanksgiving leftovers but for normal day to day stuff this fridge will be plenty big enough for me.

Thanksging dinner went great. I started the charcoal chimneys with my fire starter and those bad boys were roaring in just a few minutes. Worked a lot better than the vegetable oil soaked newspaper trick. My aunt brought over a bunch of home made goat cheeses and the sweet potato fries were a big hit. My biggest problem now is I have to much leftover desserts. I hope all of you had a great Thanksgiving!

Turkey in the brine, backyard leaf cleanup

November 21, 2022

The Turkey is in the brine. I use about a cup  each of  Kosher salt and Brown sugar dissolved in hot water to start the brine. The bulk of the liquid is real Apple cider. This year I’m trying something new in the brine with fresh lemons and lemon zest and the  3 garlic cloves pealed into the brine. Peeling garlic cloves is not a fun job!  Add in some peppercorns fresh herbs like sage rosemary and thyme and that is the brine. Mesquite charcoal adds a lot of sweet flavor to the turkey.  I think the lemon will make a nice counter point to the sweetness of the charcoal flavor. Two days is fine for a turkey brine. I just like three days to give the turkey plenty of time to soak up the flavors. I use a 3 gallon food grade bucket to brine the turkey. The bucket fits in my shop fridge so it is in a temp. controlled environment. I’m looking at a 3 hour cook time for the bird so I start the charcoal an hour ahead of time. let the bird warm up at room temp. for about 30 minutes before throwing it on the grill. I rotate the bird every 15-20 minutes and make sure that the last bit of cooking is Breast down and the bird rests for 30 minutes before carving breast down. That will ensure all the juices flow into the breast and keep it from being dry.  I’m going to buy another turkey this month while the prices are low so I will have a turkey for next year.

I ran the lawnmower across the backyard lawn to pick up the leaves. Now these are mostly from black walnut trees and these leave tend to kill all plants so to eliminate competition. These are not  the leaves you want to mulch your garden or use in your compost beds.  But they make a great killing mulch for weed areas without killing the soil. If you have a black walnut tree clean up those leaves and use them like you would use a weed killer. I like using my lawnmower to chop up and bag the leaves in the bag and then spread the mulch in my alley way that is all weeds.

I have watched my neighbor spray round up/chemical weed killer every year and they never fix the problem of weeds. I use 30% vinegar and black walnut leaf mulch and I might have a few goat heads. My problem is in eliminating “cheat” grass and Foxtail weeds.  I think I can start adding in plants I like to the alley way beds.

The winter birds are returning to my bird feeders. Placing rocks in a water feature might be great in summer but Ice freezes to those rocks and makes clearing the ice a chore. Perhaps it is a bit silly but I like seeing the birds come back to the feeders.

Getting ready for Turkey day and other odds and ends.

November 19, 2022

Time to start making those items you can make before Thanksgiving. Most of my items are deserts.  I have a couple of cakes to make and fudge is easy to make and have ready ahead of time. The turkey is getting soft to the touch and should be completely thawed by the 22nd, then I can put the bird in the brine for 48 hours before BBQing.  I like doing a slow thaw of the turkey in the fridge since you can pull the giblet packs out easily and if some of the bird is still a bit frozen it will finish thawing in the brine. I would say it takes about 3 days to thaw a 14 pound turkey. If you are starting late or have a bigger turkey you can use a bucket or ice chest to thaw the turkey in a day or two but you need to watch the temps. closely  to keep the turkey in the safe zone of food prep.  I use my Toaster oven for roasting my veggies, the BBQ for the turkey and the oven is used on Thanksgiving day for rolls and for keeping food warm rather than for cooking/baking.

While the kitchen is the gathering space and I do most of the cooking for Thanks giving I want to be able to enjoy talking and not just focus on the cooking of the meal. The more you can prepare ahead of time the less stressful the Thanksgiving meal becomes.

I started some deep cleaning around the house with cleaning the walls I want to paint in my bedroom. Gosh I forgot just how much work washing walls can be!  I’m using Lysol Multi-purpose cleaner and it is about the best cleaner I have found for cleaning. I bought several bottles on sale and use them to refill spray bottles for normal kitchen and bathroom cleaning but it works great for mopping floors and cleaning walls.

I filled up the 3rd kindling box and I have enough leftover wood to finish up the 4th and last box of kindling. If those boxes go on sale again I’d like to add 2 more boxes full of kindling but for now I can fill the section between the kindling boxes with loose kindling for myself or Mom and have kindling for several weeks if the weather is bad or I can’t cut kindling because I feel bad.  Filling up the kindling box seems very doable now rather than a goal that seemed very difficult in the past. If each small kindling box lasts about 2 weeks and I have 4 full I have kindling cut that should last into January. If I can fill another 2 boxes I should last through February.  That is if I have to start a new fire everyday via kindling and I don’t have coals from overnight that can start a fire without kindling.

The biggest change for my firewood is stacking wood that is between the normal size split wood but not as small as kindling. I add more to this wood pile as I cut kindling because of knotty wood that does not split easily and it is delivered to me by my wood supplier and I have taken noticed of it. Don’t try and cut kindling with knotty or twisted wood.  Sure you might have to split that type of wood for you stove.  Trying to split it for kindling is an exercise in frustration.  Don’t do it!  I use Doug fir that is a soft wood with mostly straight grain and I deal with a lot of twisty grains and knotty wood. Don’t fight it just grab another chunk of wood to split.

Last of the the Thanksgiving dinner shopping done.

November 17, 2022

Today Fred Meyer had a 10% discount for Veterans so I finished up the last minute shopping for the fresh food Items I want for Thanksgiving. The fresh brussels sprouts and green beans at Fred Meyer’s did not look very good. I bought frozen vegies and they will probably taste and look as good as fresh once they are roasted. Still no lemon meringue pies in the stores. This seems like such an odd thing to be in short supply but it does show that some items won’t be available at any price. I’m doing Sweet potato fries rather than a traditional casserole of yams/sweet potatoes. The new air fryer is becoming one of my favorite cooking tools along with the toaster oven. Almost as good as a deep fryer but no storing or changing old cooking oil and super easy to clean. A small convection toaster oven can work but the air fryer is much better for the job. I use a spry can of coconut oil to help the food crisp up a little bit more in the air fryer.

I dug out the turkey to thaw through the weekend. A small turkey needs 2-3 days to thaw and if you have a large bird in the 20 pound range you need to get in the fridge and thawing.  I might be a little early but it won’t hurt the turkey to spend a couple of days unfrozen in the fridge and then on Tuesday the 22 of November it goes into the brine for 48 hours. If you have a frozen turkey put it in the fridge on Friday to safely thaw over the weekend then you can marinate, brine or season the bird for cooking without a worry for food safety or if the bird is thawed properly before cooking. I use my little toaster oven for roasting veggies., the BBQ for the Turkey and leave the regular oven for big baking tasks like breads and casserole dishes

It looks like I will get good weather for BBQing the Turkey this year. Over 40 degrees F. and no rain or snow.  I can cook easily in that kind of weather!

I loaded up the front porch wood rack from the “kennel wood pile”.  I never noticed how much of the wood was split into small chunks of wood. This is great for starting fires and makes cutting kindling easier but I want bigger chunks of wood that can burn overnight.  I don’t know why I never noticed this before in my wood pile. Overall it is good for me as I don’t have to split wood. I have plenty of wood to burn after the kindling is on fire.  It’s just strange I never noticed until this year. What was problem that I split wood to address a problem and now that problem no longer exists.

On politics what can one person do? Get outside of the system! Use cash as much as possible and local suppliers. I don’t like Bitcoin/digital money it seems to me replacing one fiat currency with another that is dependent on computers, internet and the electric grid. It seems to me few people look at the counter-party risk on many investments. Doge coin that was done as a meme has got some investments and it was an internet meme.   Get stocked on the things you need to survive. Find people that provide the  things you need to survive that are local and get out of the markets before they crash and into tangible assets you can use.

The G20 was a shit show of the “elites” trying to command and control the serf/peasants.  No one cares about the edicts of the elites. That is what scares them!  When most average people don’t believe the Elites everything falls apart.  The EU is facing a winter of no heat and the EU actively destroying food production. I don’t think most folks in the EU will like the prospect of freezing/starving for the “Green Agenda” of elites.

Turkeys are on sale and more firewood work.

November 15, 2022

Albertsons and Fred Meyer have turkey prices at  49 cents and 59 cents per pound, if you spend $50.00 in the store. With inflation the way it is, spending $50.00 in a grocery store is easy. I will be buying a  frozen turkey for next year’s Thanksgiving at these prices. Between food inflation and the Powers That Be (PTB) wanting us to eat bugs who knows what will happen to the food supply chains in a year.  I admit I’m spooked by there being no lemon meringue pies in the stores for any price.  I always knew that some items would not be available at any price but, it is troubling to see it happen.  I would recommend you stock up on shelf stable holiday menu items on sale to use for 2023 holiday menu.  Bi-Mart has the Stovetop stuffing double pak box 2 for $5.00 and canned cranberry sauce 2 for $3.00 until 22 November. Time to start bread making again as the Oven heat is great in the winter time. I bought up several fudge making boxes last year for about $4.50 per box.  That same box is almost $8.00 this year. Who knows what it will cost in 2023?  Most folks can have a Turkey dinner this Thanksgiving but start planning for 2023 holidays now!

I started filling up the new kindling boxes today. Well I started splitting the big chunks into smaller chunks/kindling. It took about 30 minutes to fill one box and I have plenty of wood on hand for kindling. I have more than enough wood ready to split in to kindling to fill at least one box and perhaps two boxes. I tend to use less kindling when it gets really cold as I only start one fire per day and keep it burning though the day so a box of kindling can last up to 2 weeks depending on my overnight fire skills. I think a person can cut enough kindling to get through a winter heating season. My mid-size wood pile is about the same as I keep adding the hard to split wood into kindling stage.

One thing I have learned with my disability is sometime your body just does not work very well and doing jobs around the house sometimes drops to the bare minimum. It might be a CIDP flare, a cold, flu or just achy joints from the weather changing.  The reason does not matter from the weather sucks or you hurt. You still need to heat your home and do your chores. It is best that you prep your wood heating so when you have a bad day or a bad week you need easily accessible wood on hand to stay warm. I have found splitting the big chunks of wood on one day and then cutting that wood into kindling over several days works best. I do about 30-45 minutes of work to fill an 18inch x 12 inch x 12 inch box full of kindling.  Always best to do this cutting and splitting in good weather.  You don’t want to cut kindling in freezing rain. 

Boomer the dog and I hit the one mile mark for our walks. I bought one of those leashes that play out and retract via a button and Boomer likes it but he is roaming more and a bit tired when he gets home. Boomer the terrier is much more energetic than the pekes I have owned in the past. The walks also seem to help keep some of nails  ground down. Though I need to trim a few of his nails.  I’m getting in more mileage walking.  My knee is a little tender/painful but overall I know the walks are good for me and I’m learning the local neighborhood. 

Life goes on despite what the “ELITES” think life is very simple. It is the simple things are hard.  We can do the hard work but we will work for ourselves and not the elite. The “ELITES” seem to think that people will be happy being  renters forever and never allowed to own anything. That is feudalism/serfdom for the people. How will this happen?  I have a home under Mortgage loan with a bank.  I’m happy with the terms of my loan will the bank try and change the terms of the loan?  I don’t put anything against the PTBs and what they will try to take everything. 

Leaf clean up and chopping wood. Water/food storage in winter

November 13, 2022

The trees are dropping leaves now that the colder weather has hit the area. I filled up my two large garbage bins with leaves and called it good though I have more leaves to pick up. I can’t use the Black walnut leaves in compost or as mulch as these leaves can kill other vegetation. It does make a great mulch for weedy areas where you want to kill out plants/weeds. You don’t want any Black walnut leaves sitting on your lawn long term.  I’m trying to grow grass seed this winter so getting the leaves removed and getting the sunlight to the grass seed is a big deal for me.

I have started cutting a batch of kindling. I bought up several of the wood storage boxes at Bi-mart and I can’t believe how perfectly these smaller kindling boxes fit in my big kindling box.  I could not have planned the big kindling box better if I had tried!  The weather right now is dry and cool so I can cut kindling in two parts. Split the larger wood into smaller chunks with the axe. Then split those chunks into kindling with the hatchet.  If a chunk of wood is hard to split it goes into porch wood rack or into the in between size wood stack used for starting fires. The size of this firewood is a bit smaller/less thick that the firewood bundles you see on sale at many grocery stores. I have not made much of a dent in this firewood pile as I keep adding to this pile while I cut kindling there is plenty of firewood that is not easy to split into kindling because of knots and twisting grain. Stacking up these in between sized firewood has been one of the best things I have done this year.

I use rain barrels to collect water but in winter those barrels will freeze. I drain the barrels of water to 3/4 to 2/3rds full so the water/ice does not burst the barrel. Now winter can help with storing food with cool/freezing weather. A simple Styrofoam cooler can work as a fridge/freezer depending on the out door temps. I like having warm water for cleaning and I think a 5 gallon water igloo jug is the best way to store hot water during a power outage.  I use a smaller 2 gallon water jug in the kitchen / bath for handwashing and clean up.  I have large stock pots in the 5 gallon range that I can heat up to 150 degrees F. which is higher than most hot water heaters. You fill the pots and place them on the wood stove at night and in the morning you fill up the igloo jugs for hot water for 24-48 hours after filling. I did this for a couple of weeks when my water line was being repaired and it worked great!

Insulated coolers don’t care if you use them for cold or hot items they just maintain temps over time. I think you should have a 5 gallon igloo jug for everyone in your house. Leave it empty if you wish for the majority of time.  You can fill it ahead of a disaster with hot or cold water depending on the forecast.  Speaking for myself I would fill it with water and store it in a closet and depending on the weather  I’d fill it with hot water or ice as the Igloo jug makes a great cooler for storing foods if needed.

Having a warm shower or cool shower and getting clean can be huge for the morale of a person in a disaster. Cleanliness might be next to Godliness, but it is sure great for fighting off disease and infections. Ask yourself will I wash my hands, face and body if I have warm water or cold water.  Some folks claim they love  washing in cold water.  I will never lend money money to people that claim that.

Lemon meringue pie shortage?

November 11, 2022

I got the pies for the Holidays but I had to settle for Key Lime pie rather than lemon meringue as none were in the store. Don’t get me wrong Key lime pie is good but I love lemon meringue pie! I’m going to bake some cakes this year which is new for the Holiday menu.

I love cooking food in new ways especially when the results taste better to me. I recommend you cook veggies in a toaster oven rather than boiling water on the stove top. The vegies don’t get soggy and I think they taste better overall. I’ll be buying some Brussel sprouts to roast and some green beans for the fresh vegies that did not do so great in my garden this year. I roast the Brussel sprouts at 400 degrees for 18-20 minutes in the toaster oven  and I stir fry green beans on the stove top in bacon grease add a bit of garlic and bacon crumbles on top of the green beans. Fast easy and tastes great!

For the Turkey brine this year I will add some lemons to the brine to be a counter point to the sweetness of the mesquite charcoal smoke. I want to try something different with the BBQ turkey and see how it works out. Lemon flavors generally work good with poultry so this should work out okay at worst and be great at best.

Boomer the dog and I made one mile on our walk today.  Boomer did not do his flop in the front yard after the walk and then chased one my cats so his stamina is okay for 1 mile. My knee is still a bit tender but I did not have trouble walking a mile.  So over all it was a great walk.  I know walking a mile is not a huge thing to many people. I used to walk a couple of miles 5 days a week but I used a walker to aid myself. I’m not using a walker for these walks with Boomer.  That is an improvement for me.  I think it is good to have a reason to get out and about in the cooler weather.  It can be all to easy not to go outside in the cold if you don’t have a reason to go out in the cold.

Much like we move from an air conditioned house to an air conditioned car to air conditioned buildings in summer. We move from heated homes to heated cars to heated buildings and we don’t build any tolerance for anything outside our comfort zone. I’m not talking about practicing to miserable but making the best of any situation. I know people will do dumb things like using a grill to heat their home.  Place a generator poorly and die due to Carbon monoxide poisoning due to ignorance. It happens every winter despite all the warnings.  Don’t be that person that dies because you don’t listen to the warnings.

I have a small electric heater that I used to warm up the backside of my house. The brand name is Westpoint and does a great job warming up a space. I tried out another electric heater and it was awful for heating a room.  Every home is different.  I’m doing good using wood heat for my house but I used propane heaters before I had a wood stove as primary heat.

You have options as I  the big buddy heater on sale for $120.00 at Bi-mart. This is great heater that accepts 2 one pound propane tanks and has a fan to circulate the heat.  Anyone can have a backup heat source if they want it.

Snow and then clear and cold weather. Turkey on sale?

November 9, 2022

Had a pretty good snow for a couple of hours and then it turned cold so the snow will probably hang around for a couple of days. Sure looked pretty during the sunset. I refilled the porch rack with some wood and used the leaf blower to blow the snow off the kindling and wood tarps. I have a small B&D 18 volt leaf blower that is not powerful but it is very handy in the winter time for blowing the snow off of sidewalks, tarps and other items. It does not replace a snow shovel but for cleaning off a light snow it is great.

I’m seeing Turkeys going on sale at few different stores. Albertsons has Turkey for $1.29 per pound if you buy $25.00 of other stuff in the store. Grocery Outlet has turkey in the 14-16 pound range for .53 cent per pound if you spend $50.00 in the store. I have read that Walmart is offering sale prices on Thanksgiving food items but I don’t shop that store so I’m not sure of the savings. Bi-Mart has the Stove top stuffing 2 paks, 2for $5.00 and Cranberry sauce 2 for $3.00 till the 22nd of November.  I have been reading that the turkeys might be smaller than average this year.  For me that is great as I prefer BBQing a turkey in the 12-14 pound range. Some people are doing more of a Potluck type of  Thanksgiving  everyone bringing something to contribute to the meal. My family always did a sort of Potluck. While the “Host” cooked the main item like turkey, the “kids/friends” brought the chips, snacks, casseroles or a dessert. Or you can do the Holiday meals at different homes so no one pays for all meals or takes a big hit in the budget.  Perhaps I’m old fashioned but I don’t like reading that people won’t have a holiday meal to save money.  I understand it, but I don’t like it.

I have a turkey I bought last year that I will be cooking for Thanksgiving but I’ll be watching the prices for next year’s Turkey. A frozen turkey will last fine frozen for one year but after that the flavor can go off and taste “old” is the only way I know to describe it. I’m on the look out for good price for prime rib but I have plenty of Prime rib steaks and a NY roast that was super tender that I bought a couple of weeks ago.  What I’m saying is anyone can have a nice holiday meal if you shop the sales and if you pay a higher price it is worth the effort!

As far as the Mid-term elections go it seems most people voted for the status quo.  Democrats voted for the same old same old and Republicans did the same. That seems strange to me when over 60-70% of all Americans think the country is headed in the wrong direction. If people won’t vote for people that are outside of the party line be they Dem. or Rep. nothing will change.  I suppose most people in the USA are not hurting enough to look outside the box and try something different.  In Idaho we got the same old Republican party votes and some progressive education votes that the Chamber of Commerce wants for corporations. I’m no liberal, but I hate monopolies and oligarchies that control all politics they have power because of money.  In Idaho we literally voted the government the power to disburse all surplus taxes to special projects of the government, money to education/(UNIONS) and perhaps give back a bit of money to the taxpayers if anything is leftover.  The Idaho voter said Okay to this ballot measure. This boggles my mind, when by voting no all extra tax revenue could have gone back to the tax payer.

Poor people don’t need income tax credits as they don’t have enough income to be taxed. I am poor by government statistics. I could pay 20-30 grand for a solar panel set up and I would get nothing in tax credits because my income is so low I don’t pay any income tax. Now a $5,000 voucher to install and energy efficient heating/cooling system or replace appliances would help the poor. It would not cover all costs but it would cover enough of the costs that a “poor” family could afford a new energy efficient heating system or new appliances. When a politician talks about giving tax credits to the poor. Know that most of the poor don’t pay income taxes so nothing is paid to anyone that is poor and nothing changes.