Monday, April 27, 2009

Swine Flu and getting prepared...

I went to the store today to pick up a few fresh things, and for the first time I actually used the Clorox wipes they have by the carts to wipe the handles and such. I had never noticed them before, but today they caught my eye.

I heard a good bit of info today on the radio that I thought I would pass along. With all the buzz about the swine flu and possible pandemic the suggestion was put forth to do a couple of things. First, make sure you have at least 2 weeks of food and water to live on if we get hit with a pandemic. As already seen in Mexico, folks are being told to stay home and indoors. So look around your kitchen and pantry right now and see what you might need to do to be prepared.

It was also suggested that if things do get bad, and so far here in the US they aren't expected to, what would you do with your children for 2 weeks if the schools got closed down. Yay??? So just a couple of things to think about.

My heart and prayers go out to the people of Mexico. Not only are they having to deal with the flu situation, but in Mexico City they've had a few quakes that are swaying buildings and scaring an already stressed out population. So tonight, before we all hit the sack, won't you stop and send a prayer up for those folks in Mexico?

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

No! No! No!

We have a new favorite word around our house this week. Well, actually two. Mo, or no, depending on Emmett's mood. He is so close to being 2 and boy can we tell. He says no to almost everything, or "Mo", depending. We try to find ways to redirect him instead of saying no all the time to him, but sometimes it's not possible.
So I got to thinking about why it is that children start saying no right around the age of 2. As they realize they have power to control a bit of their lives, they test that at every opportunity. Sometimes they will say no, just to say it. As adults we try to give our children and grandchildren opportunities to grow, or to learn, and we try to keep them safe. We try to give them guidelines and set boundaries based on what they can and can't handle, or what is safe. They will often times say "no" to our limits, or freedoms, depending on their sense of what is fair, or what they want. It made me think about how often we say "no" to God, when he sends us guidelines, or opportunities to grow and learn. Or even the opportunity to learn where we came from, and where we go after this life. Most often though, it has to do with a selfish desire to gain "something" in spite of the fact that we know deep in our hearts that it may be unwise, unhealthy or destructive for us. As adults we have freedoms that are not always good for us. We see more and more the push to get society to accept certain behaviors as okay or normal, based on what is desirable to those pushing these at us. They behave like tantrum throwing toddlers, and want us to accept their behavior while calling us bigoted for believing in a higher, more spiritual law. The very sad dimension to this is that when we live in conflict with what is moral or right, we throw away the opportunity for something more precious, more permanent and lasting, satisfying and sure, than any earthly, physical or temporal pleasure will ever give us. Sometimes, we just have to say no to ourselves to gain the better more peaceful way. When we live as we are supposed to, we don't have to push our agenda in anyone's face. We have a peace of mind that can't be bought.
There are times that we will have to stand up for right and say no to those who push too hard. Let's not be afraid to do that.
For now, I get to decide whether Emmett really means "Mo", or "no".

Friday, April 17, 2009

Halleluha!!!! Sleep at last!

The last two nights I actually got at least 7 hours of sleep, which doesn't happen! So the exercise is starting to work. Still so tired but that's due to lack of water I think. So I'm trying to get more water down, and to relax more before bed. I usually am working right up until and that's not productive.
The exercise is coming along okay. Wow! I'm so out of shape! I've not been like this for a few years and it's frustrating! The food intake is another thing. I start out with good intentions each day but fall about lunch time as I've been so tired. When I'm tired I crave sugar. Bad combo that.
I've decided to keep a food journal and make myself accountable for all I eat. So here's me tattling on myself. This morning I had 1 pancake with a light smear of butter, and a dab of maple syrup , some fresh cantaloupe, and 1 hard boiled egg. I've had 2- 16 oz. glasses of water so far today. Later I had the crumbs in the bottom of the tortilla chip bag. Lunch is coming up but haven't settled on that one yet.
Here's an easy recipe for salmon lovers, and for those who don't particularly like salmon this will have you asking for more.

1- 1 lb. fillet Salmon, thawed
3 T. brown sugar
1 T. Balsamic vinegar
4 T. soy sauce

You can add chopped green onion, cilantro, and or garlic to this mix. You can also substitute lemon or lime juice for the vinegar. Mix all ingredients together and place in flat dish. Lay the salmon in this and turn over a couple of times. Let marinate in this for at least 2 hours. Drain and grill, or put the salmon and marinade in frying pan and cook over medium heat, turning once or twice, until all liquid is gone or salmon is done. I've never had anyone not like this recipe, and it has won over several who wouldn't eat salmon before. We usually have this with white rice and a nice salad.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Wonderful weekend!

What a beautiful Sunday it was! Warm, sunny and perfect for an Easter celebration. Even the peach trees dressed for the occasion. We started the day with Easter Doves. A soft and slightly sweet almond flavored, honey glazed sweet roll shaped like doves.
Before church I got a roast ready in my dutch oven. The recipe called for bunches of fresh sage and rosemary, the fragrance of which filled the apartment with a deliciously tantalizing fragrance.
After church and dinner we hid eggs in the yard for Emmett. He is a quick study and found them quickly. He would imitate mommy who was saying, "Hmmmm, I wonder where they are?" and tap his chin with his finger.

He was down to the last egg when Rudy Miss Patooty with the big fat booty, and Molly the moocher came wandering down from their place.

Rudy is much friendlier to Emmett than Molly.
And yes! He was able to giver her a kiss!
Grandchildren make holidays so wonderful! Their delight in the world around them is enough to melt anyone's heart.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Wishing you a Happy Easter from our home to yours. May we all take a moment or two to reflect on the sacrifice made in our behalf by the Savior. For us He died and rose again. The Atonement makes it possible for all of us to go back home again if we choose to follow His teachings and live the commandments. I will be forever grateful for this gift.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

A New Resolve

I got up this morning sick and tired of being sick and tired so I have a new resolve. Well, actually it's an old new resolve. Eat better and exercise daily. To help me get back on the exercise track my sweet sister in-law gave me a Beach Bodies exercise CD. Mind you I'm not interested in a beach body as I've never had one and probably never will. I heard a DJ in Fairbanks remark once about a day at Chena Lakes early in the summer. He made the comment that the beach looked like the poultry section of the meat market....yipes! Well, no one will be subjected to my dimpled fandango as I am not a glutton for punishment and don't believe in undue punishment of others. Oh sure, I've been in a swimsuit before, my favorite was a sea green floral suit that hugged my once shapely curves, but had a nice little skirt to cover my less than perfect body parts, but now I would look like a hippo in a tutu in a suit like that so no way! :-) The idea behind exercise is to get healthy again. It's amazing how a couple of months of slacking off on exercise will really put you in a slump. The sinus surgery didn't help, but our eating habits have been attrocious this year. So I'm taking bisquits with country gravy, and cinnamon rolls off the breakfast menu for a bit, as well as cutting back on the beef again, and toning down on sauces and gravies as a whole. I always cook from scratch, but it doesn't really matter if you are going heavy on the fat and sugar. So with the advent of Spring and all the fresh fruits and berries starting to pop up in the stores it's time to get down to business and get healthy again.
Here's my pancake recipe for a hearty, tasty, but healthy alternative to the regular pancake.

2 Grain Applesauce Pancakes

1 cup flour
1/4 cup each cornmeal and whole rolled oats
1/2 t. each salt, baking powder and baking soda
1 t. apple pie spice
1 egg
1/2 cup applesauce, unsweetened
1 + cups of lowfat milk or buttermilk

Mix all ingredients together. This batter is fairly thick but you can add milk a little at a time to thin to the consistency you like. Pour 1/4 to 1/3 cup batter on hot, lightly greased griddle.
Cook until bubbles form then flip. Cook until browned nicely on both sides. 6-8 medium pancakes.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Tortillas and seeds.....

I've been trying to use some of our dried goods such as beans to make our budget stretch so we had bean tostadas the night before last. With just the two of us at home we usually have leftovers, but not always all of everything. So not having enough tostada shells required my being resourceful. I have lard and flour and salt, so I made tortillas! I'm a purist when it comes to some things so yes, I do use lard when the need arises, and tortillas just aren't the same without it. I used 2 cups flour, 2 T. lard, 1/2 t. salt and about 1/2 cup very warm water, or enough to make a kneadable dough. I kneaded the dough til it was soft and smooth, covered it and let it sit for a bit. Then I created 8 balls and flattened each then dipped each in flour and rolled them out as thin as I could. I cooked them in a very hot, dry skillet, turning quickly to keep them from burning. I kept them in a covered dish to keep warm until dinner. Yummy! You can make a dozen by using 3 cups flour, 3 T. lard or oil, 1/2-1 t. salt, and about 1 cup very warm water. No, I don't use baking powder in mine. I was taught by a gal from Nogales, Mexico how to make tortillas and she would never have thought of using it.
Aren't these delightful looking seed packets? I love how fresh and wonderful the veggies and plants look on these! It gets my fingers itching to play in the soil, working through it to get all the junk and lumps out and mixing the good stuff in. Here in Wendover we have to add things to the soil such as peat moss, and manure because our dirt is so alkyline an tough. The results are worth the effort though as we can get some very tasty food out of our garden. I order from Vesey's as they have the best seeds I've found and their seeds are perfect for the shorter growing season in our neck of the woods in Oregon. I know, Wendover isn't in Oregon, but we plant some things here before heading to Oregon for the summer. I can come back to tomatoes, carrots, beets and so on here, ready to harvest. I will start plants here to take to Oregon so they have time to mature before leaving there to come back here. Can you tell I love to garden?

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Blogs of Note....... and peaches and cream oatmeal

I took an opportunity to check out the blogs of note list on my blog dashboard, and am amazed at what folks think is noteworthy. There was a young mom lamenting the fact that her husband is unhappy with her right now. In her post she referred to her life in not so charming terms, using letters to represent swear words. Her big thing was that hubby was unhappy about her having photos of an ex. When you look further, in a previous post she shares how she and the 14 month old baby have been sharing the bed for months, while hubby is on the sofa. Well it doesn't take a rocket scientist to understand the real issue. The husband feels replaced by the baby, and is finding every other thing to blame as it's hard to blame your own child. A blog of note? Not sure why.

Here's a little tip from a not so noteworthy blog, but one you can feel assured that even your child could read....:-)

When the kidlets were young I made sure they had a lot of variety for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I love oatmeal, but my children werent't as crazy about it, so as I was cooking said cereal I would add a dollup of peach or banana, or other jam to pre-sweeten it. Whalaa, our own homegrown version of peaches and cream oatmeal! Someone may ask why I don't just buy it already made that way, well I like to know what my children are eating, and it's certainly much cheaper to do it this way. Call me stingy or cheap, but hey those pennies don't come easy! Try it the next time you want hot cereal for breakfast.