Some thrift store finds

I’ve been going over to Goodwill lately and have found a few good things. For about 3 years I’ve been looking for a Zojirushi bread maker. It is the best of the best but at $270, I don’t think so. But what to my amazement I saw the other day but a Zojirushi bread maker. Of course, I snapped it up or I should say heaved it up. I paid $15 for it. But did it work? Well, I got it home and cleaned it up and made a loaf of white sandwich bread. Yep. Pretty darn tasty.IMG_0586 (1).jpgIMG_0588 (1).jpg  so very excited. and I will sell or give away the inexpensive one I bought just for making the dough. I made a whole wheat loaf the next day and pretty darn good too. So I am thrilled at my find.

Then I found a nice vintage Descoware gratin pan. It’s cast iron with enamel over sorta like a Le Creuset.  I made a small pan of cheese enchiladas and they were yummy.

I’ve been washing what few curtains I have and having to iron them. I’m not much of an ironer but it needs to be done.

Then here’s the sunroom all cleaned up.

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IMG_0327.jpgYou can barely see Buddy and Lucky the cockatiels.

Here’s a shot looking back at my office space.

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IMG_0584.jpgWell, I’m off to do some laundry.

Spring is coming…

A little Waldorf song we use to sing”Spring is coming, spring is coming, birdies build their nest…” Ummm, I can’t remember the rest. I still have my Waldorf song books so maybe it’s in there. oh, here it is….
Spring is coming, spring is coming
birdies build your nest.
Weave together straw and feather
doing each your best.

Spring is coming, spring is coming
flowers are growing, too.
Pansies, lilies, daffodilies
now are coming through.

Spring is coming, spring is coming
all around is fair.
Shimmer, glimmer on the river,
joy is everywhere.
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IMG_0565This is goose girl with her geese.These were the wooden toys  fromIMG_0567Germany. Ostheimer wood toys. i would buy these for my son ,Z, and daughter when they were little. Okay, really I bought them for me because I love them so. Right now we have the frog prince and little bunny on the table and we, (okay , I do) play little skits at dinner.

IMG_0568Here’s some daffodils from the garden.

finally, the sun is out and it’s going to be a lovely next week or so with temperatures reaching 70 degrees. Yeah!! I am sick of rain and cold.

B is heading to S Cal to go to the huge natural foods show in Anaheim. He gets to stay at the California Grand at Disney land . Geez, poor guy, it’s tough.

I’m doing a few chores today like dust but things are tidy. one of the best things about being a minimalist is the less stuff you have the easier it is to keep things tidy and done. This week was the kitchen zone and as I’ve said it is probably the zone that requires the most work due to the stove, refrigerator etc. But for some reason this week I breezed thru it in about an hour. I think I had been keeping things wiped down and very tidy all week so that could be why.

On another note, I decided to buy some new Corelle White lunch plates because my Crate and Barrel ones were getting pretty marked up. I’m enjoying the Corelle because it stacks with a very small footprint (only 1 inch high for 6 plates.) I got rid of 4 C and B white ones and 3 smaller ones. Then I bought some new glasses called Duralex and there made in France. I absolutely love them. My goal it to get rid of my wine glasses and all the other ones and just use these for wine, juice etc.  Supposedly they are very durable and last for a long time. The six I bought are lovely .

 

 

What’s new?

Well, I’ve been working on a Facebook page for our branch library in Applegate. It’s possibly going to be closed and it serves an enormous need in that area. the circulation there is small but the wi-fi is used constantly as are the public computers and the children’s program.  I personally don’t use this branch but Nevada county but that’s for personal reasons BUT I support this library in every way I can because I feel passionate about libraries especially small rural ones. Many people in the community would have no wi-fi access or access to a computer without this branch.  I’m a member of the FOAL and am going to be VP for the coming year as long as my health holds steady.

Then I’ve been washing the Ikea couch covers and today I’m doing the main cover. Last time I did them all at once and this way I’ve done the cushions first ( 2 days) and then today the cover.

Yesterday I made a loaf of bread and it came out very nice. I have professional loaf pan from williams sonoma but it’s 1  1/2lbs . So ususally when I make it in this the loaf just doesnt rise up that far but yesterday the recipe had 4 cups of flour so it was definetely a 1 1/2 loaf.

At least it’s been sunny out but still quite cold.

I’m heading to the gym today and then tomorrow I have an eye doctor appt. I guess I’ve decided to get the cataract surgery for my right eye. I have trouble seeing out of that eye so I’m sure it will be a big difference. With all the steriod use I’ve had I guess it caused some cataract stuff. I was going to hold off but really now is a better time since I’m not on any chemo drugs.  So that will probably be sometime this spring.

Dinner is spaghetti and meatballs.( for the meat eaters), just spaghetti for the veg.

Beautiful Santa Barbara

This has been the weirdest week. On Monday we had terrible rain, sleet, hail, and the wind. Most of the day was breezy but not bad. But Around 7 pm the wind started in like a freight train. It was very scary. Then @ 8 pm, we saw a huge flash and bang and one of our neighbor’s trees snapped in half and took out major power lines. I was really freaked since the wind kept going for at least another 2 hours. i finally took an Ativan and went to bed since my nerves were shot. So power was out for @ 26 hours. Tuesday was also very stormy and we weren’t sure whether we were going to leave.  But we got to SB and had a lovely drive down. B worked the next day at the co-op. I relaxed and we had a lovely time. We walked the beach trail both mornings and the one day I hit over 10,000 steps. i usually get to 8,000 or so but not quite 10,000 so I was pleased.

So we went to favorite french bakery Renaud’s. The best authentic french croissants this side of Paris.

Today we drove to San Luis Obispo so he can work that co-op. Then were going to check into the hotel and go check out Goodwill.

 

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the Williams Sonoma Roast Chicken with Blood Oranges and Red Onion

img_0522So this came out pretty good overall. You could taste the orange zest in the chicken. I didn’t make a gravy with the onions although the red onions looked yummy. I cook the whole chicken in a cast iron pan. Being a former vegetarian, I tend to over cook meat but this came out great.

recipe here’s the link.

Hawaii Planner asked about cooking a whole chicken. It’s really so simple and easy. For a family of big eaters, roast 2. It’s just as easy to do 2 chickens and there are lots of leftovers. So, I use either organic chickens or like Marys, or Rocky chicken at Safeway isn’t organic but is natural. So I just put the chicken in my cast iron skillet. I usually cut up an onion to put under the chicken. Then I use a couple of tablespoons of olive oil over it. Then I put a lemon cut up in the cavity with maybe some thyme from the garden. Then I smoosh some butter on the top of the bird, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sometimes I put cloves of garlic in with lemon. Then I roast at 375 degrees for usually an hour and a half. If you’re doing 2 chickens I’d go at least 2 hours and voila you have a beautiful dinner. Of course, paranoid me with cooking to the right temperature, I use a digital thermometer just to check.

So since my husband is still vegetarian, I always grill some tofu up with tamari and butter. I think if I wasn’t too lazy I could have cooked up some red onions and blood oranges with the tofu. I often make the same recipe for him just using tofu.

I oven baked a sheet pan of red onions and organic asparagus that I got at Costco.

Speaking of Costco, I said we were so happy to get the organic queen sheets. So, I washed them and my husband aways makes the bed on sheet day( Sunday). So he tells me later gee, the bottom sheet was kinda big.  So later I pull up the corner and it’s a cal King. WTF, The top sheet is a queen and the bottom Cal king. So now on a rainy Monday I have to ( maybe I can get B to do it), got back to Costco which is 25 minutes away, and get a refund and then go into the store and get another pack and then you can bet in the parking lot I’m going to open them and check.  Well…

Plus we’re in for rain and the wind today. But the worst wind is tonight from 10 pm to about 4 am. This bothers me because of my wind phobia ( mostly wind and trees combined), and it will be at night when it’s dark. Well, whatcha gonna do???

 

The middle of the week.

I -80 still had westbound traffic closed last night so my daughter spent the night in Truckee. The mudslide was still unstable so they were detouring cars to Nevada City. The night before it took her 4 hours to get home. So, fortunately, Dad has points at Best Western, so she stayed for free.   The doggies missed her. And her cat Ollie.

It’s cloudy again and the rain is supposed to move in tonight. Ugh, I’m sick of the rain.

Walking has been nice without rain gear and an umbrella. Sunrise is getting earlier and earlier. Today it was 6:56 am. We are getting to the park earlier too and it’s light. We haven’t walked in the dark in a few weeks.

We had a nice homemade Valentines dinner a la Julia Child. I made JC’s crepes and did a florentine filling with spinach, mushrooms, and goat cheese/ cream cheese filling topped with a cheese sauce. Then I made an old fashioned chocolate cookie wafer refrigerator cake. (Basically, cookies and whipped cream).  Nice. Actually, we’re having the leftovers IMG_0506.jpgtonight so I’m not cooking.img_0509-1img_0508-5

I forgot to take the put together picture but you put the mixture in the crepe and roll up. Then like enchiladas add the sauce on top. The mixture looks fairly wet but it wasn’t.

I thought of going to town and doing some errands but in the end just stayed home.

Five Frugal Things Friday, oops Saturday

I guess I missed this yesterday so I’ll just do it today. First, though, it’s a miracle. We can see the sun. It’s strange to see that yellow orb in the sky after so much rain. If you missed this on the news, I-80 from Colfax, ( right above where we live) to Truckee, was closed due to a mudslide that went across all lanes. Now that’s serious folks. One lane eastbound is open this morning but all the rest are still closed. Wow, that’s a lot of rain and mud.

So it hasn’t been a frugal week at all.

  • B went to Costco and spent $200. Well, it was stuff we needed and of course some champagne to celebrate my numbers.
  • I went to Grocery Outlet and spent $70 on groceries. so not frugal
  • We’ve had all space heaters off since though, rainy, it has been quite warm @ 52 degrees yesterday to start. So I’m hoping the electric bill reflects this.
  • My daughter and I went to Walmart. I only go to Walmart once or twice a year and that is because they carry the Danskin active wear line. This is what makes up most of my capsule wardrobe. But for the last year, they’ve had nada that I liked. But yesterday I found the pants I like( think yoga pants)so I got the only black they had in my size and a grey. Grey is not usually in my color base but I liked these so I got them.  Overall it wasn’t frugal, but since I don’t really shop very often, I felt okay about it.
  • We ate all our meals at home except my daughter and I splurged on an In and Out Burger.
  • I did put $100 in our Santa saver. So that’s a start.

 

So today I’m going to do some house chores like vacuum unless I can get someone else to do it, go to the gym, then wash a few windows. I cleaned up the sun porch where we have the cockatiels and now the windows need to be cleaned. We took out the treadmill as no one was using it. I’m not sure what to do with it but for now its the black hole of the barn. Boy, is that the next area to declutter. At one point it looked pretty good. Now it’s just a disaster zone. Well, it has been too cold to be out there so soon.

Well, off to start this wonderful sunny day.

Dinner is roast chicken( the Zaycon order) red potatoes from Costco, grilled tofu, and a big salad. I want to learn how to cut up a chicken so I may try that today. I pulled out my cookbook, ‘ The art of French Cooking’ by Julia Child and it shows or tells how. ( I think).

‘100 Essentials’ by Francine​ Jay

I decided to buy this ebook since I’m always looking to deepen my understanding and my practice of minimalism. 100 essentials

I follow miss minimalists blog and enjoy her writings. This ebook is an encapsulation of minimalism. she really has taken this to another level of what minimalism means. I like she says each person will have their own 100 essentials.  I doubt I’d ever have that few but I think I’d still like to have less in our house.

It’s a good ebook and you should check it out. I got rid of a few things that I had multiples and I’m always thrilled to see stuff go.