Saturday, February 28, 2009

Some reflections on lent

I made a commitment to not buy any clothes during lent, therefore I am worried about the Salvation Army's bottom line.

I have gone by exactly 5 Salvation Army's since Ash Wednesday, most likely all of them would have gotten some of my money. Today, we went by several more thrift stores, this is going to be a huge sacrifice! More than I thought....oh, I miss Unique, Village, Goodwill, and Salvation Army already.

Some thoughts on the last week

Last weekend, we headed to Valpo for a meeting even though Jim wasn't feeling that well. On Friday afternoon, I stopped by the University Chapel which I had always wanted to - I took pictures from my phone, which aren't good. So I found this website to show anyone who might have interest in some amazing stained glass. Here.

We also found a 5 lb resealable bag of sour patch kids - oh, joy. If you have still not found out about these wonders, that are better than chocolate, see here.

The week was filled with nights in and I cooked each night and loved it. I finally made a corn bread that has Jim's approval and is only 150 calories a serving. We liked it so much, I made it twice (Jim ate it in his lunch almost everyday).

1 c cornmeal
1 c flour
1/4 c white sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 c 1% fat buttermilk
1 whole egg
1/4 c tub margarine

1. Preheat oven to 350F
2. Mix together cornmeal, flour, sugar, and baking powder.
3. In another bowl, combine buttermilk and egg. Beat lightly.
4. Slowly add buttermilk and egg mixture to dry ingredients.
5. Add margarine and mix by hand or mixer for 1 minute.
6. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes in an 8-by 8-inch, greased baking dish. Cool, cut into 10 squares.
Makes 10 servings.

I also hit it big with a new chili recipe that was based on a recipe I found in Women's Health with some major changes. I think a lot was added by my addition of the Sweet Red Pepper soup.

1 tsp olive oil
1 small onion
1 tsp garlic
1 lb ground turkey breast
2 cans of diced tomatoes
1 can of chickpeas, black beans and kidney beans
oregano and red chile powder to taste
V8 red pepper soup - one carton

Saute onion and garlic with the oil. Then brown the turkey. Add the tomatoes, spices, beans, and the red pepper soup. Let simmer for 30 minutes.

This morning, I picked up some veggies from Growing Power - a Community Support Ag organization - we got sunflower sprouts (I love these), carrots, broccoli, cabbage, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and a variety of fruit. I am excited to try to figure out what to make.

Today for lunch we headed to Starship. Jim gets a kick out of showing me around the suburbs like I show people around Chicago. This is a place that he just remembered recently that is all about homemade soup and star trek. It is a cute little diner, and we even had a coupon (thanks to Joan for giving us an Entertainment coupon book!. When I saw it, it seemed like something Jim and I would do. Jim coming to me, "I need to a new place for all my collections." "Well, I could make some soup to afford the rent on your storage area...," my response. We came home with 6 frozen soups to try and enjoy. We had beef barley and cream of broccoli today.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Quote of the Day

To read without reflecting is like eating without digesting.

- Edmund Burke

So true!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Meerkat Manor

Every night for the past 4 nights Krista and I have been addicted to this great Discovery show. The show is about a family of Meerkats that were studied for 10 years in Africa. They develop stories based on the everyday life of these cute animals, some of the stories are kinda cheesy but there is a voice over commenting on everything to do. It's tons of fun so check it out.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Alex makes my day!

Thanks Alex for making me sing like I haven't in a very long.

My favorite show and computer game growing up was Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? Check this out!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Leftover week

Living in a small house with a even smaller kitchen when you love to cook and collect cool new foods can be a problem. I declared a week of buying very little (after 4 weeks of not being home). We have had some great meals. (Notice I often say we in the following, Jim and I rarely shop without the other - it is a funny habit - we are both quality time folks so grocery shopping counts for that.)

Monday: Thai salad - using some of the rice noodles that we bought as an experiment - I bought a head of red leaf lettace, a cucumber, and bean sprouts for this meal. I used some pork that was in the freezer. (Jim had a free Subway sandwich for lunch.)

Tuesday: Carrot Soup and tuna salad sandwiches - bought nothing. Carrot soup is really great - chop an onion in a food processor, throw that in a pot with as much ginger as you want, and about 2 tsp of oil - cook for 2 minutes Food processor chop a bag of baby carrots (left over from last week's Jim shopping trip) Add to pot with 1 can of chicken broth. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5-7 minutes. Puree. Then add a bit of honey and salt.

I took a can of tuna, chopped up some lettace and cucumber and added about 1 tbsp of oil and vingar salad dressing. Toasted up some whole wheat bread and served it up!

Wednesday: I took 2 quarts beef broth (found several weeks ago at a dollar store for 79 cents a quart), added all the frozen veggies in our freezer - about 5 half bags (Jim uses them a lot when I am gone), added a can of tomatoes, some spices and the egg noodles I still had (about 1 cup). I served with some honey wheat pretzels.

Thursday: Plans are for the frozen fish and for some brown rice (trader joe's frozen). I need to figure out a veggie! We still have some cucumber and bean sprouts.

Friday will be out - as we head to MI!

Monday, February 9, 2009

For the alto's out there

I turned my post from late January into my start of a meeting for the DOOR staff meetings last week. As a part of it, I showed the following clip. I love this song, a group I was in from high school sang it - but I wasn't an alto then.

Alto's lament


Krista and Me where out and about a lot this weekend and ran into some human interactions that were weird.

On Saturday...

We were at a all you can eat sushi bar and a family (Mom, Dad, daughter) showed up next to our table the Wife definitely did not want to be there, she expressed this several times including:

something about the way the preparers touch the food...even though they were all wearing gloves

if they had a kids playground

In Schaumburg at the Woodfield mall, a short 5'6" or shorter balding man wearing flannel and thick glasses asked us if we knew where he could find a "hopping" bar was. We did not.

After we saw the movie "He's Just Not Into You" an older woman was waiting in-between the doors outside the theater asked us to take her to Denny's. Not knowing the area and my trust in humanity is low I declined and as we were leaving I had to turn around in the car and found the Denny's....which was 1/3rd of a block away from the theater.


We went to Five Guys which is an awesome hamburger and fries joint very similar to In-and-Out.
While in there there was a woman who first came up and complained that the music was too loud, then proceeded to complain that there weren't enough fries in her bag, we were waiting for our order when this all occurred and when we got our bag the bag was filled with fries, there was no way it wasn't like that for her because we watched her pull her cup of fries out of the bag and it was full...

On our way out of Five Guys we ran into a man that stopped us asking for money for the Green line to get home, he had been driving with a friend with a suspended license and admitted to was he was "rolling weed" and didn't have any cash to get home, slightly shocked by his truthfulness I used my monthly pass to let him on.

Strange interactions this weekend...always entertaining

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Tech Support

This is a great story about bad tech support from a great comic - Scott Adams

Read On...