We have a friend who is a serious smoker. He believes he should be able to smoke anywhere and everywhere. He purposely tests the limits of various smoking rules just to see how far he can push them. When he isn’t testing the limits of smoking legislation he is expounding on the impact of tobacco taxes on his life. I really don’t have an opinion on tobacco taxes and rarely listen to anything he has to say on the matter. I really feel like this is something that has to impact me in order for me to have a solid opinion. Since I am not a smoker and no one in my family is then we really can’t complain about the topic.
Archive for the ‘ Info ’ Category
I have been gardening for a few years now and feel like every day I learn something new. Just when I think I have something figured out I am thrown for a loop. I feel like this is what keeps gardening interesting. Each year I find myself filled with wonder at the miracle of gardening. You put a dried up hard seed in the ground and eventually with luck it grows into a plant. If you are really lucky it produces some food for you. Gardening is like having hope in my mind. Putting a seed in the ground is an act of faith…a belief that something might or could happen. I guess that is why I love it so much. When all the wonder in the world seems to be fading, gardening gives me hope.
We live in a pretty small town. There are not really any large building with elevators or escalators. This means that my children don’t often get the thrill of riding in or on anything that moves them from one floor of a building to the other. I don’t know that my younger son has ever seen an escalator. He has however gotten to ride on a couple of stairlifts in the last couple of months. Our neighbor has a son who relies on a wheel chair in order to be mobile. Recently our son has started spending time with him. Their house is equipped with a couple of stairlifts in order to make it more accessible. They offered to let our son have a ride in the stairlift a few weeks ago and ever since then he can’t stop talking about how we should get one. I keep reminding him that he needs to be thankful that he doesn’t need one. Despite my best efforts to convince him otherwise he still believes that having a stairlift in your home is the best thing ever. I can only imagine what he would think if he knew that some people actually have elevators in their houses.
I consider myself a polite coupon using shopper. I try to be perfectly ordered with my coupons. I don’t make huge purchases at busy hours and let people with small orders go ahead of me. I am pleasant to cashiers who are not pleasant in return. I hate it when I see other coupon shoppers who are rude and inconsiderate of the people around them. I have watched people hold up the line with huge transactions and act as if the store owes them their bargains. I have watched people haggle for paying 30 cents on a hundred dollars transaction because they feel it is off by pennies. It is people like this that give shoppers like me a bad reputation.
My youngest son has finished school for the year. I cannot tell you how happy that makes me. I am especially glad to be done teaching him music. We are not a musical family and teaching music is pretty painful for us all. He had to use a slide whistle this year which none of us enjoyed. I almost lost it on purpose a few times but knew I would have to replace it if I did. That would mean ordering a slide whistle from musicians friend or someplace similar. We use a cyber school and have to return all of the educational materials sent to us at the end of each school year. I am really glad to be packing up the slide whistle, tambourine, and other music supplies. It will be good to have a little bit of quiet once again.
I am sitting here hoping for just a bit of rain. We now have part of our garden planted, and it is in need of a drink. I could turn on the hose, but I hate paying for water to water the garden. It hasn’t rained enough here to fill my rain barrels yet so using them is not an option. We were supposed to get rain a few hours ago, and the sky still looks clear. Hopefully, we get a little rain soon which would make my wallet and garden happy.
Next month I will have been married for 22 years. It really is hard to believe that I have been married over half my life. I feel very blessed to have shared this amount of time with such a wonderful man. Marriage isn’t about getting a diamond wedding band in my opinion. It is about having a quality person that you can share the high points and low points of life with. We have grown up together in a sense but have in the process allowed each other to grow into who we are meant to be. Although I married young I don’t feel like I have missed out on a single thing. I simply feel blessed to have shared my life with someone who wants the best for me and our life together.
There is something in the air lately that is bringing people to my door. They are not coming to my door for any other reason than to “sell” me something. I have had 4 people in the last two days wanting to sell me gutters, lawn care, or religion. One person actually came back a second time to give her sales pitch another try. I finally posted a sign on the door stating that I do not welcome ~ sales people, canvassers, evangelists, free estimates, free offers, or surveys. We will see if that helps.
The mood has finally struck me to get some spring cleaning done. There is just something about finally being able to open the windows that makes me want to give the house a good cleaning. I have spent quite a bit of time in my kitchen getting things organized. The entire process makes wish a set of kitchen cabinet organizers was in my budget. For now I am just going to have to work with what I have. I am glad to see everything neat and clean and smelling fresh. No matter how much I clean during the winter it just always feels stale inside. Opening the windows and washing everything down makes such a difference.
We spent all day on Sunday helping my folks clean out a camp they have on there property. The camp has slowly but surely become filled with stuff they have accumulated over the years. In the process of cleaning it out we came across a number interesting things. Perhaps the most interesting things, to my children, was a set of intercoms. They have had the best time with these things talking to each other from various parts of the house. It is funny how the simplest things can be so much fun.
Recently I have come to realize that I don’t have the right kind of dishes for transporting hot foods. Today I found myself wishing for some custom styrofoam packaging for my one and only casserole dish. I have had to take a number of hot foods to various events lately and am completely unprepared. Normally I bring desserts or things that don’t require special gear to transport them. I guess for Christmas this year I will be asking for a casserole carrier.
We just got back from having Easter dinner at my brother’s house. I had some hesitations about this dinner because his wife absolutely cannot cook. She surprised us all and did a very good job. She is usually such a nervous mess when she has to cook that it drives everyone crazy to be around her. This time she was calm and collected and we all had a good time. I am glad to be home and am looking forward to a quiet day with my kids and husband tomorrow.
We have decided that our one neighbor is as elusive as Big Foot. We know he exists but no one ever sees him. In the summer he will come out occasionally to smoke. I used to see him leave the house when the local shop was running cigar specials. I haven’t seen him in months but I see the lights go off and on in the house from time to time. I suppose it isn’t really my business what he does with his time but since he doesn’t work and he isn’t elderly or frail you have to wonder what he does all the time.
This week I have very few “make it yourself” things on my list. I have finally gotten my sourdough starter where I want it to be and have been using it almost daily. I have been making a fantastic sour dough pizza crust and bread. I started a batch of orange cleaner this week and can’t wait to try it. It is essentially orange peels soaked in vinegar. The vinegar extracts the oil from the orange peel and makes what is purported to be a fantastic cleaner.
We have lived in a bunch of different types of neighborhoods over the years. The one we live in now is probably the nicest of them all. The only thing I ever notice going on in this neighborhood is someone playing a good electric drum set every so often. I don’t mind a bit of music here and there as long as it isn’t every night all night. Our neighbor gives music lessons and sometimes things get a bit loud over there but it is never past 10 pm at night. I have learned over the years and having lived in differnt places that overhearing music is nothing in the big scheme of things.
For some reason about a month ago my youngest son developed a fear of the dark. He was never afraid before this and went to bed without incident every night. Now he lays awake and whines until we come in and console him. He has night lights and the radio playing, but he still seems afraid. I don’t know what else we can do other than wait for this phase to pass. I am convinced it is a phase and that soon we will be on the other side of it. I don’t what cause it but I am sure it is just a phase.
For about a week my youngest son has been carrying a toy guitar around with him everywhere. It seems like once a week he picks a toy that is his favorite for that week. This week seems to be the week for guitar playing. If I thought his interest would extend beyond this week I would consider looking for the best acoustic guitar and finding him a guitar teacher. Right now his playing is pretty abysmal but he is really enjoying himself and I am not about to put a damper on that.
About six months ago I discovered a recipe for chicken sandwiches made with ground chicken. The recipe is extremely simple but it tastes absolutely delicious. My husband and I bought about 10 pounds of ground chicken and made a huge batch of them. We partially grilled them and froze them. They make for really quick and delicious meal that the entire family loves. It was an afternoon of cooking that was well spent. I never thought ground chicken could taste good but it really does. Discover a recipe for chicken patties and make some for your family.
One of the things about home schooling you learn quickly is that children are easily distracted. I fooled myself into believing that at home my kids wouldn’t deal with distractions and could better focus on learning. The truth is that there are constantly distractions occurring. It could be something as simple as novelty pens sitting in the pen cup. One minute the pen is just sitting there and the next minute it has become an object for playing with. Other distractions are things like the mailman delivering packages or the phone ringing. What I have learned is that these distractions are minor in the big scheme of things and that my children still obtain a better education despite these little occurrences.
It has been a very long time since I have been very active with using coupons. I decided that most of the things that I bought with coupons ended up being food items that really weren’t very healthy. This week I found out that CVS is an awesome place for stocking up on items like cleaning, healthcare, and beauty stuff. I have been working my coupon magic and have been getting a ton of great stuff for next to nothing. It is fun to put my coupon skills to work in a way that brings home stuff we can use and isn’t horrible for us.