Saturday, November 29, 2008

In Search of Hai Karate

See dad, if you hang on to it for a long time it is worth big $$$$!!!
Today I was thinking of the gifts I use to give as a child in the 60's and immediateley thought about Hai Karate- Hai Karate bids starts at 9.99 for a 30 year old bottle of Hai Karate. Shit- I use to buy this crap for my dad back in the 60's- he would always open it up and karate chop the piano. Just like they did in the commercials. One bottle of this has a current bid of $50.00 (thats $12.50 per ounce) Who woulda thunk that Hai Karate could be more expensive than, say Pierre Cardin (my fragrance when I am trying to hide the plumber stink)? So don't say no to aqua velva, or old spice- You hang on to it long enough it will be a valuble gift!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Plumber Man

I love reading The Green Phone Booth . But my apologies to Grean Bean, Burbanmom, MamaBird (aka Jess Trev), The Purloined Letter and The Greeen Sheeep. But I notice something is missing:
Where the hell is the token Man???

I ask you ladies, would the League of Justice be the same without Wonder Woman? Would the fantastic four be fantastic without Invisible Girl/Woman?

Ladies and Gentlemen- I give you my alter-eco-ego

Can unclog plugged toilets with a single plunge, The Plumber Man has those special butt-crack muscles. Able to stop gushing leaks with a simple twist of a Pipe wrench; And he has the ability to fuse together PVC pipe with very little glue, He even has his own song-

Plumber Man (sung to the tune of "Spider Man")
Plumber man, plumber man,
Can make it flush like no one can
Stop a Leak? He’ll give it a try-
No more drips, now it’s dry
Look out here comes the Plumber Man
Now I am not giving a resume, nor am I applying for membership into the green phone booth but please remember that not all green super heroes are female!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A Thanksgiving joke

A joke from my Uncle Art - Happy Thanksgiving folks!

A young man named John received a parrot named ' Chief ' as a gift. The parrot had a bad attitude and an even worse vocabulary. Every word out of the bird's mouth was rude, obnoxious and laced with profanity. John tried and tried to change the bird's attitude by consistently saying only polite words, playing soft music and anything else he could think of to 'clean up' the bird's vocabulary. Finally, John was fed up and he yelled at the parrot. The parrot yelled back; John shook the parrot and the parrot got angrier and even ruder. John, in desperation, threw up his hand, grabbed the bird and put him in the freezer.

For a few minutes the parrot squawked and kicked and screamed. Then suddenly there was total quiet. Not a peep was heard for over a minute. Fearing that he'd hurt the parrot, John quickly opened the door to the freezer.

The parrot calmly stepped out onto John's outstretched arms and said, 'I believe I may have offended you with my rude language and actions. I'm sincerely remorseful for my inappropriate transgressions and I fully intend to do everything I can to correct my rude and unforgivable behavior. ' John was stunned at the change in the bird's attitude. As he was about to ask the parrot what had made such a dramatic change in his behavior, the bird continued,

'May I ask what the turkey did? '

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Oh Gawd! The boy is cooking again!

I was sitting around trying to think of something different for dessert on Thursday, And since I have all this pureed pumpkin in the freezer I thought Pumpkin Pie (sticks finger in nose and announces "BORING") and it came to me- Pumpkin Cre’me Brứlee'. I saw Michael Chiarello make his version of this on Food Network, and I adapted it into my own little recipe. His version calls for using left over pumpkin pie stuffed into a ramekin, mine is a tad bit more involved, using my pumpkin pie recipe with no crust- but very easy! And yes, I washed the finger I stuck in my nose!
Pumpkin Cre’me Brứlee'


2 cups of pumpkin puree or canned pumpkin

1/2 cup of firm brown sugar

2 eggs or (vegans- 1/2 cup of egg substitute)

1 tablespoon of Pumpkin Pie Spice

1 can (12 ounces) Nonfat evaporated Milk or for vegan recipe, as Chile writes in her blog try making some evaporated soy milk (cook down to double-strength) for pie or as Chile says:
"Put 2 cups soymilk in a saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring
constantly, until volume is reduced to 1 cup. Cool. Store in jar in fridge."
Preheat oven to 350. In a medium bowl, mix together the pumpkin, brown sugar, egg, pumpkin pie spice and non-fat evaporated milk. Carefully pour into Ramekins leaving about a quarter inch of room. Place Ramekins on a cookie sheet and Bake in 350 oven for 60 minutes or until a knife inserted in the middle of one of the Ramekins comes clean. Let cool on the counter. Place into the frididaire. Chill

Before serving, sprinkle about 1 1/2 Tablespoons of sugar over each "custard". To get it crusty, Take your Blowtorch (I love cooking when there is the chance of danger) and aim the flame just above the sugar, just out of reach , until sugar starts to turn brown. Or use The whimps method: Simply place the sugared custards under a hot broiler and watch for browning, when evenly browned, Serve with a small dallop of whipped creme on it, and perhaps a berry for garnish. And yes this is also my favorate pumpkin pie recipe- you just pour the pumpkin mixture in a pie crust and bake for 60 minutes or until a knife inserted in the middle comes clean. Hmmm- a Cre'me Brứlee' pie???
Quick tip- Don't have ramekins? try using 1/2 pint wide mouth mason jars- then you have a screw on lid if you need to take them somewhere

Buy Local and Handmade this christmas

To view the video, click here.
As far as buying local, many of your favorite local stores are also handmade stores- Soap shops, Candles Shops, Cheese shops and Food Shops all make wonderful gifts at the holidays. Another place to find local gifts is Art Galleries. Click on this link to find out more about shopping locally here in Washington/King County. Also don't forget the many arts and crafts fairs and bazars that go on in your own area. Those artisans and crafters need your support as well! Buy sustainably, buy local, buy handmade whenever possible!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Jingle Bells, Batman smells, Robin Laid an egg...

Well call me crazy- but I put Christmas lights on the house today. Yup Christmas Lights. Those evil little users of electricity. But these are not just any lights. These are LED lights, So they will not be using a great deal of electricity. And i only put up one string, which was more than enough! And I put them on a neat little timer/photo switch- they will only turn on when it gets dark and stay on for the alloted time, then turn themselves off. I felt good about the lights as I didn't put any up for two years, and no tree last year (remember I had contractors putting up an addition on the house). I really do love lights, more than most anything at christmas time. It feels like my Christmas card to the world. Now I have to decide if I put Santa on the roof. Yes Beth, my Fake Plastic Santa with a cfl shoved up his butt so he is lit.
Santa is lit. Reminds me of Uncle Torvald.

"He would take a drink in the morning,
his Nerves to improve,
By noon he was so unwound
He could hardly move"

That's other thing I love about christmas- Stan Boreson songs like "I yust go nuts at Christmas" and "All I want for Christmas"

Ah Stan Boreson- now there is a Seattle Childhood memory for ya, dontcha know!

And a little video of Vinter Underver

And speaking of Stan Boreson here is a fave Clip from "Almost Live"

More info on Ballard
And just when you thought I was done goofing on Ballard, Almost Live! has this gem:

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Make do and Mend Challenge Check In

Make Do and Mend Challenge: Well everyone- here we are in the End of November, and I know all of you have been busylittle beavers mending clothing, household items, duct taping cars! If I owned a company I would hire all of you for my workforce!

This week, I am getting ready for the Thanksgiving Holiday, so I fixed a pot Lid and repaired a Roasting Rack in time to prepare the Roast Beast on Thursday. Normally I would put the Roast Beast on the rotisserie, but wanted to do it in the oven, where I will cook the potatoes and Veggies at the same time!
Made up some more Bel Cloches from pop bottles for plants. Fixed a small cookie sheet that goes into my broiler oven so it will actually fit my broiler oven (It is one I picked up at thrift store)- Just a hair too wide- got inventive with pliers and bent the edges so it would fit! What Creative repairs did everyone else do this week?

Weekly Challenge Update

My Matsu Apple tree

Sharon's Independence Days Challenge Week 23
Plant something: Planted the Matsu (or Crispin) Apple Tree in the backyard. Wasn’t planning on a regular apple tree, as I plan to plant a Columnar orchid

Prep something: Made stock for soup and froze

Harvest something: A few peas, carrots

Manage something: Chile made me clean out and organize my spice cabinet – well she didn’t make me- she “inspired me

Cook Something New: Made some cheese dips using Crunchy’s Cream Cheese as the base- They turned out great!

Shrimp Dip
1 cup of Cream Cheese
about ½ lb of salad shrimp about 1 cup
Seafood Sauce- about ½ cup
Stir all ingredients well, chill. Serve with Crackers or melba toast

Onion and Chive dip
1 cup of Cream Cheese
½ cup of chopped chives
One bunch of green onion tops
Mix all together. Re-Chill in Frigidaire. Serve with Crackers or melba toast

Melba Toast
SERVES 4 -8 (change servings and units)
Ingredients- 8 slices white bread (I suggest Italian Bread or Brioche) Or you can use a Baggette slice the bagette thinly and toast untoasted sides uppermost, until golden and the edges curl.

Preheat the broiler to high and toast the bread lightly on both sides.

Cut off the crusts and then, holding the toast flat, slide a sharp knife between the toasted edges to split the bread so that you now have 8 slices that are toasted only on one side.

Cut each piece into 4 triangles, and then toast under the broiler, untoasted sides uppermost, until golden and the edges curl.

Alternatively, make Melba toast earlier in the day, and warm for a short time in the oven at 325ºF
Work on Local Food Systems: Went all over looking for local foods for Thanksgiving, found local cheeses and dairy, got local beef roast

Re-Cycle, Re-Use, Re-Duce, Repair or Compost something: Made some more Bel Cloches out of 1 and 2 liter pop bottles; Put garden waste in composter

Learn a skill: Nope

MELINDA'S BUY SUSTAINABLY CHALLENGE: A much better week. Bought cheese from Beechers, a local cheese shop and veggies from Duane’s Garden spot. And The roast beast from B&E Meats here in Burien. All of my holiday food falls in the 100 mile diet. And it is tasty. And I made my cream cheese following Crunchy’s Cream Cheese recipe. Didn’t buy any Christmas presents this week. Or hardware, but I did receive the Programmable thermostat, which I need to install tonight

Beansprout's Make a Christmas Gift Challenge: Coming along on this one. Doing the finishing touches on the gift tag ornaments, made some progress re-upholstering the head board.

Crunchy’s Freeze Yer Balls off Challenge: Still at 55/65. Got my new programmable thermostat for the Dining room/Kitchen and plan on installing it tonight, since I am cooking stock on the stove and baking pumpkin bread.

Sergeant Chile’s Operation Clean Out- Chile inspired me to clean out and organize the spice cabinet. I did that and spent about an hour in the garage, trying to clean that out as well.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Kitten With A Whisk!

Cat Cora isn't afraid to be a sexpot chef!

Have I ever mentioned how much I enjoy watching Iron Chef America? NO? Well let me clue you in- It is the best reality based show on Food Network. Why? Because of Iron Chef Cat Cora. Not only is she an accomplished chef, who isn't afraid to let her southern roots show, she also has aBachelor of Science degree in Exercise Physiology and Biology from the University of Southern Mississippi, making her one of the smarter Iron Chefs.
She brings a dogged, fresh approach to ICA, with a touch of sex appeal, and a "not afraid to kick ass" style. Refreshing, considering the male dominated Iron Chef America. She is on her own level when compared to Iron Chefs Mattamora, Flay, Symon and Battali. Her record is 13 wins and 7 losses, just behind Batalli (19-4). They (the male Iron Chefs) all come of like they are the best thing to enter the kitchen since sliced bread, while Ms. Cora just beats her opponents like taking a whisk to quail eggs.
Cora could be a pin-up for most straight guys, as this picture proves. And she should be a role model for american women and girls proving that the kitchen should be a place for Originality and sexiness!
Yup. Ms. Cora has it all. Great personality, great body, knwoledge, and she kicks butt. I am just wondering why she doesn't have her own show (ala Rachel Ray)? Oprah -are you listening?

Thursday, November 20, 2008


Matsu Apples

I planted the matsu apple tree today- I know it is not the right time of year for apple tree planting, but figured it was as good a time as any considering I paid $5 for the tree! Goes against my planned Columnar orchid too, but hey, it is a $5 apple tree!If it doesn't grow I am out just $5! And one thing I have good luck with is unwanted plants that need TLC ( The golden plum in my front yard was a close out at Raintree nursery)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Buy Handmade

Give a middle finger to big business and Mr. Corporate money bags and buy handmade this year for Christmas. Buying handmade not only is sustainable,and much kinder to the earth, but it helps your local craftsperson out too. It's the greener way to shop! So send some green to your everyday local artisans and craftspeople and BUY HANDMADE FOR YOUR HOLIDAY GIVING!

Buy Handmade Video from Etsy on Vimeo.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Weekly Challenge Update

Kinda of a blah week as you can tell!
Sharon's Independence Days Challenge Week 22

Plant something: Nope
Prep something: Nope
Harvest something: A few peas that’s it
Manage something: Got the Christmas junk down in the garage; put away Halloween stuff
Cook Something New: Didn’t cook at all this week
Work on Local Food Systems: Nope
Re-Cycle, Re-Use, Re-Duce, Repair or Compost something: Well the one place I did something, I put pizza boxes and such in the yard waste bin, read about making a decorative fence out of wine bottles- You bury them upside down! I saw it at Debbie's Artful Inspirations blog- Sounds cool so I am thinking about it. Re-Used some glass bottles for water storage.
Learn a skill: Went and took the fourth class in the WSU Extension program- How to make a Raingarden- have been deciding if I should attempt this or not- About the only place it would make any sense is the front yard- maybe one around the garage area!

MELINDA'S BUY SUSTAINABLY CHALLENGE: Boy was I ever bad at this during the week: I bought a new pair of jeans (When I see my size and inseam and on sale for $8 I usually jump on it) Bought some Christmas presents this week as well- None of them used or pre-owned. But I am pretty much done Christmas shopping. Am getting over the If I buy one for someone else I should buy one for myself!

Beansprout's Make a Christmas Gift Challenge: As I said last Sunday, I decided not to make mom a Murphy bed- But I did buy her an air bed that makes its own box spring- has it’s own air pump, and is small enough to fit in one her dresser drawers with all the linens – just as good as making a big Murphy bed. Get about halfway done on her head board, need to get started on her clock- got the clock works for it now so need to get busy!

Crunchy’s Freeze Yer Balls off Challenge: Still at 65 when awake or here, 55 when gone or asleep. Still waiting on new programmable thermostat- suppose to be here on Tuesday!

Sergeant Chile’s Operation Clean Out- Didn’t accomplish much here either- except got the Christmas stuff down in the garage and the Halloween stuff back up.

Make Do and Mend Check In

Make Do and Mend Challenge:Well everyone- I had a tough week- got nothing repaired at home. In fact I didn't get much of anything done this week at all. Suppose I was bummed out all week over Binky. But a new week starts tomorrow! How did everyone else do?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Good Bye Dinky Little Binky- You will be missed

I had to have Binky put to sleep today. He wasn't doing well with no teeth. He wasn't eating much- and it took him forever to do it!

Anyway- I still have Sammy Cat and Spike-oh yeah To-spaz- Sammy is still fairly young but Spike is getting up there in years too and is going blind and deaf, so I am thinking not much future there. If only pets could be young and hang around for awhile! Well, Binky was a good yorkie and a great bed warmer. I got Binky just after my last yorkie, Max, passed on. Binky was a rescue- as is Spike, Sammy and the Spaz. Unlike Max, He wasn't very social, not liking most people and not a great friend of most other dogs, cats etc. But he and Spike were unseperable. He was like Spikes eyes and ears and Spike was like his mouth/teeth. And he and my cats always got along. MOstly a live and let live kind of arrangement.!

Godspeed little dog!

Buying Local

Green Phone Booth Babes- I hear you, and I am looking forward to your Blog Carnival. I am reminded about the post I did a few months ago, Burien Businesses and Community. I discovered the Burien business community, all the way from natural pet food to Crepes! I have always been a believer in buying local. In fact one of the challenges I faced during Crunchy's Pioneer Week was food- I am a big restaurant guy.. nocracks about the "big" part- anyway I feel that when you buy from a local restaurant, you are supporting the local economy and local jobs. There are some great restaurants here in the Burien/Seattle area- Hey Paison! a deli, won the King 5 Best of western Washington "Best Sandwich Shop", and I expect Our local creperie, Crepe It, will do well next year. We have the Natural Pet Pantry, which sells homemade dog food, that I have always been tempted to get out a fork and join the pups in eating the Pantry Stew. It smells so good! We also have the Austrailian Pie company who pack your lunch items in paper as opposed to plastic. And top that off with the Elliot Bay Brewery who make their burgers with organic Black Angus beef raised on Vashon Island. Spent grain from the brewing process is used to make their burger buns.They serve Tony's organic Fair Trade coffee. And beer. And they make their own beer! Yep local is doing well in Burien, Washington. Like my farmer Uncle Russ used to tell me, as he ate supper everyday at The Viking Cafe in Fairdale N.D., you must always support the local bussiness men (and women) as they are the cornerstone to the local economy. Actually he never really said that. But it was an important lesson to me that he never shopped out of his area. Buying Local is not a new concept, but it has been around for awhile!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Make Do and Mend Check In

Make Do and Mend Challenge:Lets see- this week I repaired one of my rain barrels, (the hose came off- I needed to put a new hose clamp on it) and I repaired the passenger "make-Up" mirror in the Suzuki- A little hot glue and I can fix anything! Hot Glue and Hot Glue Guns are the Craft Shops answer to Duct Tape. And I learned this week that IBMommy does her auto body work with Duct Tape! LOL She gets points for originality and the use of Duct Tape- how did every one else fair?

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Weekly Challenge Update

Sharon's Independence Days Challenge Week 21
Plant something: Did buy a Matsu Apple Tree at Lowes that went on close out for $5
Prep something: Put up the Roasted Pumpkin Seeds into mason jars, made some peanut butter and made Leek and potato soup for this week and froze the soup to warm it up
Harvest something- Some lettuce, some beans, some peas
Manage something: Made some Bell Cloches out of plastic pop bottles, hoping they kick start the kale plants; Ordered another programmable thermostat for the Dining room/ Kitchen
Cook Something New: Made some of Crunchy’s Cream Cheese Was still doing it's thing in the fridge- can't wait to taste it! UPDATE 11/09 Ate some of the cream cheese this morning on a bagel- Crunchy you are a geniuos!!!
Work on Local Food Systems: Just shopping at green grocers
Re-Cycle, Re-Use, Re-Duce, Repair or Compost something: Made bell Cloche’s out of 2 liter pop bottles, threw dead sunflower stalks into yard waste bin
Learn a skill: Learned that Pioneer Week should be done with out me!

MELINDA'S BUY SUSTAINABLY CHALLENGE: Went dumpster diving and found two plastic Jack O’ Lanterns- going to use them for decoration next Halloween- ordered two programmable thermostats suitable for baseboard heaters (I have fan forced wall heaters- they use the same thermostats) One for my house and one for a gift. Bought some items to make Rudolph ornament gift tags with; Did buy a Matsu Apple Tree at Lowes that went on close out for $5

Beansprout's Make a Christmas Gift Challenge: Getting busy on the headboard for mom. Decided not to make her a Murphy bed- She doesn’t have the room for it. So I guess it is take the roll-away over there when she needs a spare bed for guests. Started making ornaments to use as gift tags!

Crunchy’s Freeze Yer Balls off Challenge: Got the thermostats set at 65 when we are there and awake, 55 when we are asleep or gone. Ordered two more programmable thermostats, One for the dining room/kitchen and one for a gift.

Sergeant Chile’s Operation Clean Out- Private Rob is reporting for duty Ma'am Yes Ma'am! Starting again in the garage- seems the enemy took over the garage and I must liberate it!

Crunchy’s Pioneer Week Update: Not so “pioneery” to end the week- Went to work on Saturday and bought Chinese food, And forgot about being a pioneer last night and got busy watching TV (You know I love The Nanny!) Fell asleep on the couch woke up burning to death- here was Topaz (aka “Stu”) the 75 pound Chocolate Lab sleeping on my legs. And Sammy Cat sleeping on my chest! Nothing like a big old stupid dog and a wily little kitty to warm you up! Certainly makes me appreciate the concept of a three dog night!



It could happen!!!

I am a

What Flower
Are You?

I found this neat quiz thingy through Vioboy's Blog.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Tiny Old House Seal the Leaks Challenge final update!

Stop The Leaks final update- This was a great challenge to me to do some work on the house- First and foremost was caulking all the windows and doors, then adding the duo-pane window in the kitchen and finally adding the siding to the north gable of the house, as well as insulting the window in the master bath (the only non dou-pane window left in the house). The house is warmer and less drafty. Thanks Jennifer!


No it is not the name Obama is using for his transition into Bush's white house- it is the name of Chile's new De-clutter challenge. Just in time- my garage needs help!


CRUNCHY DOMESTIC GODDESS’ DITCH THE DISPOSABLES CHALLENGE Final post: Silly Me- I didn’t realize this challenge had ended. And here I was going through Pioneer Week like all was good with the world! Anyway, A quick summation about this challenge: I chose to not use disposable take out and coffee cups. The coffee cups was easy, the take out not so much! I did fairly well on the coffee, taking my trusty Stainless steel mug with me, until I forgot it at a picket site- And to whomever in my Union has it now, I hope your lips fall off! Anyway I have a back up stainless steel commuter mug that is not my favorite but does the job.
The take out- not as good. I learned that if I want to reduce the waste from take out, Then I just don’t order take out. But knowing that, I choose to make wiser choices. Pizza without the plastic thing in the middle, choosing food that is put into compostable containers over Styrofoam. Anyway great challenge- I had fun!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

"Little House on Prairie," adults-only version!

This in from Yahoo news- Let me just say I always knew that Nellie was a little wanton bitch!

HELSINKI (Reuters) – Finland has rated the DVD release of the much-loved children's television series "Little House on the Prairie" suitable for adult viewing only.
To save money, Universal Pictures decided not to submit the series to state inspection, the company's Finland marketing manager Meri Suomela told Reuters on Wednesday.
Finnish authorities charge 2 euros ($2.57) per minute for assessing the correct age limit on films and television series. Distributors who forego this can only sell their shows with a sticker saying "Banned for under-18s."
"Long series can get quite expensive to check, and some use this exemption in the law to their advantage," said Matti Paloheimo, Director at the Finnish Board of Film Classification.
"Such unchecked material should not be shown to children publicly," he added.
Little House on the Prairie, which ran from 1974 to 1983, portrayed life in the U.S. West in the late 1800s and was based on the Laura Ingalls Wilder's children's book of the same name.
It remains popular in Finland, and is still shown weekly on Sunday mornings on state-owned broadcaster YLE.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


I have a mandate for all politicians, winners and losers- Pick up your damn yard signs! I would like to see a law passed that Politicos are responsible for picking up their yard signs and recycling them. I know I had an I.A.M. for Obama (International Association of Machinists) sign that I took of my fence and put in the recycle bin this morning. I call upon all politicians to do the same. One of the sad facts is the campaign workers put them on public and private property; along roads, on fences etc. and make no provisions to remove them- I have seen signs stay for a number of years. And this goes beyond being democrat or republican, red state or blue- When you are organizing to put up yard signs why not make an organized effort to remove them after the election? Just my two cents worth.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Pioneer Days Update

The first post of Crunchy's Pioneer Week

Oh Nellie, you vixen you. Well today I got up and made some eggs and soy bacon, Then I walked to the drug store and got my prescriptions.
Then I mounted my trusty steed , went to work, and came home. At home I made a delicous dinner of reheated Corn chowder and toast, Now it is time for bed. I will be dreaming of Nellie Olson all night! Maybe it is just the Vegetarian Chili I ate at lunch time!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Make do and mend Check In Week 3

Make Do and Mend Challenge:Well I did not get much done this week- got the gable completed, That’s about it! 4 more gables to go- 2 on the house and 2 on the garage. A person runs out of time when doing a major construction item.
How did everyone else do? Oh yeah I did take some scrap wood and make mason bee houses!

Weekly Challenge Update

Well the 57 day strike is over at Boeing- I will be returning to work on the 3rd- sigh I must admit I was enjoying practicing for retirement; I must say that challenges have taught me to live frugally, and more self sustaining. If you haven’t tried a challenge, I highly suggest you start! Also, beansprouts blog started a challenge which is right up my alley- A make your own Christmas gifts challenge!

Sharon's Independence Days Challenge Week 20
Plant something: Kale plants that I bought
Prep something: 3 more pumpkins roasted, pureed and froze. Roasted pumpkin seeds!
Harvest something- A few beans and some lettuce; sunflower heads from the garden for bird food- strung them up with a stick or twig stuck in the head as a perch for birds- I use to do this as a kid
Manage something: Finish putting up the new siding on the north gable
Cook Something New: Cook some of Beth’s Cat food for my cat
Work on Local Food Systems: Not really, but I did buy three more sugar pumpkins for pie/soup/pumpkin bread from my local green grocer- He lowers the price on the day after halloween!
Re-Cycle, Re-Use, Re-Duce, Repair or Compost something: Saved some of the scrap cedar shingles to use in the rocket stove or my chiminea; took the rest for burn barrel on the picket line; cut down sunflowers as their growing season is over- saved the heads for birdfood and put the stalks in the composter
Learn a skill: Nothing much except learned how to recharge Nicad batteries to reduce waste batteries for flashlights, remotes, etc. Found out the NiCad batteries are rechargeable and not much more expensive than the alkaline- great for my digi-cam or as I call it My AA Battery eater! And learned I could make a solar recharger for them! Also learned That you can use the NiCad rechargeble batteries in your solar powered lights if your batteries in them went tits up

MELINDA'S BUY SUSTAINABLY CHALLENGE: Went to St. Vincent’s and bought 2 vegetable peelers, 2 stainless steel bowls with covers and a zester. I needed a new vegetable peeler, they were $6-$14 at the grocery- ridiculous! So I bought two slightly used ones that work fine for $.49 a piece! Since there was a tag sale at St. Vinnie's I got them for $.13 each! Bought two pumpkins from the green grocer that went on sale the day after Halloween! Roasted and pureed and froze them for pie! Roasted the seeds! I Bought four kale plants at Duane’s. Except for groceries, Bought nothing else.

JENNIFER'S STOP THE LEAKS CHALLENGE: Finished the gable project- 2 more to go on the house, two more on the garage. The holes are gone! Will do/finish the house first since the garage is not heated and is an “outbuilding”.

CRUNCHY DOMESTIC GODDESS’ DITCH THE DISPOSABLES CHALLENGE: Didn’t do too well this week- went to a local creperie that opened here in Burien- they put crepes in cardboard boxes which went into my yard waste container, and no bag but I could have eaten them there- but they use chinet paper plates and plastic forks/spoons so I thought it would be better to eat them at home- at least I knew containers would get composted! And bought two pizzas this week- we needed a quick meal one night- the containers also went into yard waste bin! No coffee to go without my stainless steel commuter cup this week though so that was good!

MELINDA'S GROWING CHALLENGE: Trying to figure out why my Kale etc. is not growing. Am going to try bell Cloche’s (I made some out of 2 liter pop bottles)
Any info anyone has on Kale would be appreciated!

Beansprout's Make a Christmas Gift Challenge: Ms. Melanie has a wonderful challenge for November- I make most of my Christmas gifts, so this should be neat and easy. She didn't have a button for the challenge, at least not one I saw so I made her one! I have laready started- I made fruit infused vodka for my relatives, and will make brownies in a jar, ornaments and I am making or rather reupholstering a head board for my mom for christmas, and a turning pig shaped cutting board into a clock for her as well.

Saturday, November 1, 2008


The strike at Boeing is over!
Machinists Approve New Boeing Contract; 57-Day Strike Ends. The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) announced today that its members voted to ratify a new 4-year contract with the Boeing Company by 74 percent. So my retirement rehearsal is over! I should only have to go through one more contract negotiation in my career!

One For The Birds!

I usually don’t feed the birds here- don’t want their rat buddies showing up- But I did take the sunflower heads from the garden and strung them up with a stick or twig in the head for a bird perch- They seem to enjoy it!