Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year

Now it is the timenot only for a new year but a new decade. So As the Space Needle explodes in wonderous fireworks (the tradition in Seattle except for the New Millenium on 2000, thanks Mayor Schell) Let me say


Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Taking down the Christmas Lights

I am so with it. I am taking down the Christmas lights and it ain't even Easter! And I made some light holders to store the lights on, out of my favorite tool material, Wire Coat Hangers. Took the tree down yesterday, and all the decorations! Yay me!

I simply form the wire hangers into a "Martini Glass" shape and they work perfect for holding a string of lights.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


Well time to review the Challenges, and how I did. Lets start out with The Independence Days Challenge. Ms. Sharon Astyk started this challenge in 2008. I am guessing here, but I think the idea is to teach us unsuspecting people to prepare themselves to be more self sufficient. Depend on themselves for food, storage, etc.
Well for me this is a challenge that keeps me honest! LOL, I undertook the challenge originally sometime back in 2008 just to see if I couod and to learn new things. Well almost two years and many muddy hands later, I can say that I do fairly well. Thanks to blogs like Chile’s, I have learned some new ways of preserving foods, both store bought and home grown. This challenge gives me the opportunity to try something and fail, or try something and Success. I have learned to make my own jerky, dry my own herbs, learned that jelly making is not that hard and even learned to make candied orange rinds (the diabetic version) as a result of this blog and this challenge. This is an all inclusive challenge that will change your life and work your butt.

I joined Melinda’s growing challenge in 2008 as well. The original challenge was to grow something new (new to you) This year the challenge evolved into to saving your seeds for next years garden. As last year I have learned that I cannot grow broccolli, just don’t grow for me! But I also have learned I can grow watermelon, albeit they very small “grapefruit sized watermelon. This challenge gives me the courage to try and grow new things, even if I fail. At least I have lots of pumpkin and squash seeds for next year. Still cant grow a piece of broccolli.

Crunchy’s Freeze your balls off Challenge- AKA Freeze your Bun’s challenge is pretty simple for me- I have no problem lowering the thermostat (I have programmable thermostats) The only problem is, And this year is no execption, I always seem to get the cold or the fluduring the coldest time of year, and need it a tad warmer. But I work through that.

Crunchy’s Buy Hand Challenge: Not too difficult as I already make a great portion of what I give out for Christmas. It’s easier to give a dozen home baked cookies than a box oc chocolates. And tastier. Unless we’re talking Godiva Chocolates. But that’s another post.

Crunchy Domestic Goddess’ Ditch The Disposables Challenge- Shouldn’t be too hard for a devout eco-tree hugger. But this year I chose to wean myself off of plastic cutlery and tissues. Tissues were no problem as I made a big pile of snot rags made from old t-shirts… but that plastic cutlery sneaks up on you. A few fails a few successes.
Crunchy’s Buy Nothing Challenge- Y’all know how much of a consumer I am. LOL. But this is a difficult challenge for me… it is so easy to go to the hardware or other such store when you need a bolt or a part. I didn’t buy a freezer or a mattress (or even a topper during this challenge- which I still think Ms. Chicken comes up with to make me suffer.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

The Year In REVIEW Part one

Well 2009 is about to come to a close. So, in keeping with last years theme at this time, I thought I would take a quick look back at the successes and failures of the year.

Last year I had (what I thought was) a not too lofty idea of things I wanted to get done around the house- some success, a lot of fails: On my list were:
GOAL 1- Install the shower in my bedroom bathroom. *Sigh* This still didn’t get done. The old story of why a plumbers pipes are clogged. Maybe 2010.
GOAL 2- Landscape my front yard- some of it got done- the idea is an edible landscape. Well a little bit more got done, hopefully this year I get the front yard graveled- I got most my raised beds there now. If I can accept the fact this is a work in progress, I am good.
GOAL 4- Build a pergola. Wanted to have a pergola of the front porch- Actually got temporarily done- I re-used a canopy frame and made a tropic pergola out of it- until I got a hair up my butt to use it as a green house frame. But I will get a pergola built there hopefully this year
GOAL 5- new exterior doors on laundry room and my bedroom. OK I must admit to pure lazy on this. I know which door I want in the laundry and I know what I want on the bedroom. The one excuse I have was trying to find them at the recycled building material store- do-able in the bedroom, not so much in the laundry. Doors are easy, so have no excuse not to finish this in the upcoming year!
GOAL 6- build a sunroom on my deck, Again pure lazy took over. This job is a matter of time and money. Pure and simple.
So now that I look at my goals list- I have to say What the fuck did I do all year? Well I got the contractor out to finish the roof on the garage, I did get the window in the kitchen- those are accomplishments met. I am desperately in need of plans to achieve my goals. Not just dreams. So anyway here is the goals list for 2010

  1. Install the shower in my bedroom bathroom

  2. Build a pergola

  3. New exterior doors on laundry and bedroom

Notice the sunroom is missing? Not gonna do it, maybe next year. And the landscape of the front yard, being a work in progress, I will accept that.


Saturday, December 26, 2009

Worse than Black Friday...

OMG! I had to go to the Mall area today- as much as I disdain Black Friday I hate the day after Christmas for the same reason- TOO MANY PEOPLE!!! You see my Cell Phone decided to not work right so I went to the Verizon Store right here in Burien. They couldn't fix it and told me the nearest service center was South Center (our wonderful neighborhood shopping center) "right next to Chipoltle's. Well I got in the car and Romi and I drove there- first to stand still on the freeway, due to all the folks who had to make a return. So we crept (seriously- I could of gotten out of my car and waddled my fat ass there the last two miles, with a dog who believes he single handily needs to pee on every bush shrub and rock along the way and got there faster) up to Chipoltle's and lo and behold no Verizon- luckily it was across the parking lot. Went in.Very nice folks at that store- they tool my name- they have a computerized number system, told me to take a seat. Shortly they called my name and the technician came out and got me. She explained my 2 year warranty had expired and my date to be eligible for upgrade was July. She said they could send me a new cell (the same type I had) for $50. When would I get it I asked? Tuesday or Wednesday. Well this wasn't good, my mom who is recovering from knee surgery depends on my cell phone to call me 3 or 4 times a day to day she needs milk or she is out of cat food or She is tired of looking at her Christmas tree. So I end up buying a similar cell phone to the one I had. Then Techy Girl tells me that because I had such a low level cell phone to begin with, I wouldn't be able to transfer my "contact list" and other stuff via computer- I would have to do it by hand. Think you don't have many associates and friends? Try typing in your contact list by hand. You will be amazed how popular you are! So today I learned that

  1. People (drivers) going to return Christmas Gifts suck almost as much as those Black Friday Shoppers

  2. Techy people are not impressed with my low level choices in technology

  3. Verizon in South Center is not next to Chipoltle's

  4. This area was not designed for large amounts of vehicle traffic.
  5. Mall is not the proper word for where people gather to shop- try using MAUL

So I do learn things even when I am on vacation, excuse me my new cell phone is ringing... It's my mom calling to tell me her cat doesn't like the type of cat food I bought and could I go out now and get the right kind. I forgot and bought Tuscan chicken in gravy served with garden greens intsead of Chicken Florentine in gravy served with garden greens. Such is life in my world.

Friday, December 25, 2009


Where's my bug?
Romeo's booty

I hope everyone is having a good christmas. Last night- Christmas Eve, I drove mom over to my Uncle Art's house, per the family tradition. My Aunt Claudia always puts on a great spread, and it is great to see my cousins and their kids. "Sigh"- I remember when I was a little kid, we would all converge on grandma and grandpa's- all 35 cousins, all 16 aunts and uncles. One year we even rented the American Legion Hall in Burien. Those are the years my grandma labored in the kitchen making Lefse, fattigman, rosettes, krum kake (Norwegian goodies). And we always had turkey and/or ham. We use to have grand parties in those days, but that's Christmas past. As for Christmas present- well, my family has divided into tribes, and now pretty much does their own thing, which is good, I guess. I just miss those big Christmases of long ago. As for my little family, Romeo loves his bones and rope ball tug toy, Sammy is fascinated by the electric robot "bug" I bought for him. Martin likes his Guitar along with the "Esteban" lessons. For me I got a solar battery charger, one step closer to making my solar generator, a trickle charger for the MG, which will keep the car going in these long winters better as the battery will stay charged. My mom bought me a K-Cup coffee maker, which is not totally foreign to me as my Espresso machine also doubles as a K- Cup coffee maker, though I don't use it as a K-Cup. LOL I am also getting ready to start for Christmas 2010 as I get Ideas all the time. So I hope everyone is having a good holiday. Now to go check the rib roast!

Monday, December 21, 2009

One Last Trash To Treasure Ornament

This is another easy ornament made from a security ring, this time from a pop bottle security ring. Easy to make, wrap some white yarn around something about 6" like a piece of cardboard, then do the same with some red yarn. Wrap the yarn 8 or 9 times. Cut one end of the yarn to give you 8 or 9 strings. Then the hard parts- Poke two holes in the sides of the security ring, straight across from each other- or you could wait to do it last, run some thin wire through one hole, thread a blue bead, a pink bead and one more blue one through the wire, and pull the wire through the second hole. Tie off the wire by looping it around the security ring on both sides. Now take your white yarn strings and start making a mounting knot with the white string. Then so another, and another until you have the bottom half of the ring covered. Then repeat with the red yarn or strings doing the same on the top half of the ring. When that is done, tie the red strings together at the top to make Santa's Cap, then de-fray (is that a word?) santas beard by untwisting the white yarn/threads. There know you have a Santa Ornament made from trash-
and remember (speaking of trashy santas):

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Merry Christmas

Try JibJab Sendables® eCards today!

Rob and Romeo VS the axis of evil (Bush, Palin and Cheney)

Merry Christmas, Seasons Greetings, Happy Hanukkah To All from Rob and Romeo and Sammy Cat (Sammy wasn't available for this video)

Krum Kake Redux- New Recipe

I have a new recipe for Krum Kake- much easier than the one I posted last year, from Mrs. Hilda Farden, out of the Edmore (ND) Lutheran Church Women's Cookbook

Krum Kake ... Mrs. Hilda Farden

4 eggs
1 cup of Sugar
1 cup of heavy Cream
1 1/2 tsp. Vanilla
2 cups of flour
Mix in the order given. Bake on a Krum Kake Iron.

(This is typical of North Dakota Church Cookbooks- Little direction as they think you should know how to do it and at what temperature.)

This Is How I roll

Krum Kake Irons vary from old fashioned ones you put on a burner of your stove, to fancy double electric iron. You can use a pizzelle iron, all you need is the wooden cone for rolling. All items are available at the Lefse Store

Old fashioned on the burner iron,
wooden Cone Roller

No matter what Iron you use I strongly suggest light cotten gloves or glove liners to protect your hands. Even my much banged up plumber's hands are tender to the heat of molten batter,
They say if you can make waffles, you can make Krum Kake and Pizzelle. Well I can't make waffles but I can make krum kake and pizelle.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Peanut Butter Kisses

The Farmer's Daughter is calling for a cookie recipe swap. So here is my part:


Perhaps the easiest christmas cookie I make. Those who where expecting Krum Kake or Rosettes- those might be coming as well. These are ridiculousy easy to make. Just follow the Easiest Peanut butter Cookie Recipe and add a Hershey's Kiss on top!

1 c. peanut butter, smooth or crunchy (I use a 16 oz. Jar of Adams "no stir" Crunchy and double the recipe)
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1 c. sugar

Combine above ingredients. Roll into small balls, about 1 inch. Place on a cookie pan lined with parchment paper, Bake at 350 degrees until done (about 7-10 minutes). Top with a Hershey's Kiss while cookies are still warm. Let Cool on pan or place in a refrigerator for 10-15 minutes

UPDATE: Note there is no flour in this recipe. Not an omission on my part- just doesn't call for it! Try topping with a Miniature Reese's Peanut butter cup for something different.

Voice of an Angel.. A Rob's Rave

Susan Boyle... I can't watch the you tube video without water coming from my eyes. And I just heard her new album, "I Dreamed a Dream". It was all I was expecting. I have been in love with Susan from the moment she marched on the stage on Britain's got Talent, and made Simon eat his words. And some crow. (Anytime someone makes a fool of Simon Crowell, well, lets face it- an angel gets his wings)

Her album is a mix of good songs, "I Dreamed a Dream", "Cry Me A River",(one of my favorite songs ever), "Wild Horses". Real "cleaning up" music. All delivered with her strong melodic voice. I now know what angels sound like. I give it two big hammered thumbs up!
It's no wonder this is the #1 album in the USA, and on a lot of folks Christmas list, including mine

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Some store bought decorations

1956 Ford PickUp, 1932 Chevy Standard Sports Roadster
OK I know y'all think I am in some little shack in the north, huddled up by the fireplace, wearing a red suit, making the ornaments. But I do buy ornaments as well- I got these two at a new Thrift Store that opened up by my house called the Yard Sale. Now I have two thrift stores within easy walking distance of my house! And these "Hallmark Keepsake" ornaments were like new, in the box. So still counts in the buy hand challenge.

Got my own Chuck (Klosterman)

You may or may not be familiar with Jenna Woginrich. She wrote the book "Made from Scratch" - very good book- very revealing (that is if you ever had dreams of farm living) She made me decide I am a city boy through and through. She also writes this blog, Cold Antler Farm about her little farm in Sandpointe, Vermont. She has been struggling a bit lately and is trying a lot of ways to earn money to buy her own little place (farm) So i wrote her an email telling her I wanted a picture of Chuck Klosterman.
Chuck was her rooster. Cock of the walk. And he suffered from B/A (bad attitude). Would spur you just as soon as look at you. You know, my kind of bird. Jenna recently and with much uncertainty (I am sure) sent Chuck to the big hen house in the sky. Yup. Wrung his neck. Turned him into Coq-Au-Vin.Now I don't blame her. You should never piss off (or spur) your benevolent owner. Especially if you know she carries a sharp axe. A bad rooster is not good. Ask my aunt Shirley. When she was a girl, my mom still gets the giggles something awful when telling how one of their roosters would always single out poor Aunt Shirley -jump on her back and peck her head. Gave my Auntie a big fear of birds it did. And I have always said if I get chickens, which I might this spring, I will name them Laverne and Shirley, after my aunts Laverne and Shirley (My Aunt Laverne actually had chickens and named a pig, Rob, after me- so I shall return the honor). Since we are allowed three hens- the third one might be Crunchy, or maybe Crunchy Chuck in honor of the bloggess and Mr. Klosterman. Anyway I digress. I bought a Chuck Watercolor. Jenna, besides being a good writer is a very talented water color artist to boot. Her paintings of her animals are filled with character and whimsy. She does all this and she bakes pie. And plays her own music (In fact in her book she claims and I must agree that making your own music is a sustainable concept). Her etsy store is full of her original Watercolors of farm life, some music and even hats!(Perfect choices for Crunchy's Buy Hand Challenge)

Take a read of Jenna's Cold Antler Farm Blog, and visit her etsy store. Support a gal and her dream! You never know the next egg you meet might come from Jenna!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Snowmen trio

Just a little decoration for mom's "stoop" made of some extra picket fencing I had lying around. I will admit that it wasn't totally home made- I bought the hats from the as is bin at Ikea. They were part of a "non disposable advent calendar. Wish I had bought more! The scarves are just cloth ribbon frayed at the ends.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Christmas Decorations Made from Trash- The Weekly Challenge Update

Sharon's Independence Days Challenge- Year two, week 33
1. Plant something: Just some sprouts- ground too frozen to plant anything
2. Harvest something: Nope
3. Preserve something: nope
4. Reduce Waste (recycle, reuse, reduce, repair or compost something): Made a CD tree from old CD’s I have obtained over the years; Made some “mini-wreaths” out of security rings of off plastic bottles to put on my tree
5. Preparation and Storage: Finally got started on rearranging the pantry so it will fit canned goods and such better
6. Build Community Food Systems:Was going to help with moving the community garden, but had a cold so stayed home- Got word we are getting a new community garden
7. Eat the Food (cook or eat something new): Some veggies I froze in soup

Buy Hand challenge: Am done with my Christmas shopping/gift making. Am now working on mom’s Christmas Shopping and gift making!

Freeze Your Buns off challenge- Got the thermostats set, same as last year- 65 when home- 55 when in bed or gone from the house. And again, just like last year am fighting off a cold- so the temp may go up. Time will tell

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Mini Wreaths

Mini wreaths- use them to decorate your tree or to put on your packages in place of a bow. They are made from plastic rings from plastic bottles! These wreaths are simple and easy to make- just wrap chennille stems (pipe cleaners) around the rings from plastic bottles- The bottom part of the cap- Juice bottles and such are perfect as their rings are larger. Add a few beads every now and then. Finish it off with a miniature bow

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Another Wreath!!!

A wreath for the Kitchen? Why not- a dish towel for a ribbon, holly leaves cut from scouring pads So inspired was I to make this wreath form the Dec/Jan Issue of Ready Made Magazine- I kinda like what I came up with! My berries are actually upholstry nails, and instead of string I wrap heavy yarn around my wreath form.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Front Door Wreath

Usually I make my own wreaths/swags/boughs, but this year didn't have enough greenery to trim off my evergreens. So I bought what Trader Joe's calls "Candle wreaths" they are smaller wreaths that you are supposed to put a candle throughamd use them as a table centerpiece.

I added a bow. I like the look of the nuts on the wreath. Lets hope the squirrels don't like them as well!

And yes that is me in my yellow work jacket in the reflection!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Would be a great 4R Superhero

Whoever owns this bike would make my 4R Superhero List, if I knew him or her- This is a great re-use for those damn campaign signs- making a bicycle more weather friendly- Anyway Kudos to whomever!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Christmas Meme

Stolen from The Farmer's Daughter, who stole it from Retro Housewife Goes Green and so on and so on...

1.) Have you started your Christmas shopping? Yup done. Wrapped too.
2.) Tell me about one of your special traditions. I like to put up the lights and such the day after thanksgiving- usually black friday
3.) When do you put up your tree? Usually the day after thanksgiving as well.
4.) Are you a Black Friday shopper? Nope, All though I do make a few purchases, but not at any of the big box stores and certainly not at 5 in the morning.
5.) Do you travel at Christmas or stay home? stay around here, visiting My Uncle and his family
6.) What is your funniest Christmas memory? Don't know as if any strike me a funny- I suppose giving my grandpa joke gifts
7.) What is your favorite Christmas movie of all time? Does Steel Magnolias count? That and just about any adaptation of Scrooge. I really like the one with Kelsey Grammar.
8.) Do you do your own Christmas baking? What’s your favorite treat? I make the krum kake (a Norwegian cookie) And bake a few other cookies. My favorite would have to be my aunt’s sugar cookies- so thin you could see through them. Sigh no one makes those no more
9.) Fake or Real Tree? Fake- No good reason other than fire proof, no mess.
10.) What day (as a Mom) does the actual panic set in to get it all done? Not a mom, no panic!
11.) Are you still wrapping presents on Christmas Eve? I am usually all done by then
12.) What is your favorite family fun time at Christmas? Christmas Eve. It is when we actually celebrate Christmas. Open gifts and all that
13.) What Christmas craft do you like the best? I like making ornaments
14.) Christmas music? Yes or No. And if yes, What is your favorite song? Yes- I like Elvis-(Blue Christmas), Eartha Kitt (Santa Baby) oh hell even the chipmunks (Hula Hoop song)
15.) When do you plan to finish all your shopping? Plan? Hell- I am done son
Any blogger is welcome to participate in this meme, even if you haven’t been tagged yet. Just simply copy and paste the questions into your blog, and then answer them. Then tag 5 or more of your favorite blogs, and leave them a comment telling them they’ve been tagged. (I’m not tagging anyone, play along if you want!)

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A tree made out of CD's

I just glued 25 CD's together, and put "C-7" LED Bulbs through the holes
You gotta love how the light catches the CD's
Especially when Dark

Now I have a nice lighted wall hanging to display at home! Easy to do. Just a couple of tubes of Super Glue, a string of lights and a butload of old CD's! And I think it has enough "Drag Queen" sparkle to keep my friend Condo Blues happy!

This post is part of Reinvented's trash to treasure tuesday!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Romeo- getting fame!!!

I was looking at the B-Town Blog, our source for local news and events, and looked at this story on the local Winterfest in Olde Burien, Which included get you puppy's pic taken with Santa at the Mark Restaurant- Anyway I clicked on the slideshow and the 5th picture in here was Romi and Santa - IF your look closely you will see Romeo's long suffering owner to the side.

Dog should be a model, I could be mama Rose yelling instructions from the side!

Here is a link to the story on b-town blog, And here is a direct link to the photographer's slideshow

Bad joints and christmas decorating- the Weekly Challenge Update

Kind of a bad week- My mom went in for knee surgery, so have been doing double duty here and at her home- taking care of her cat and putting up christmas decorations; prepping the apartment for when she gets home (hand held shower head, buying frozen food she can just pop into the microwave, etc.) so not a lot of play time for me. Mom got a total knee replacement- or as my uncle said "What's a joint like you doing in a lady like this?" (See where the sick sense of humor comes from?

Sharon's Independence Days Challenge- Year two, week 32
1. Plant something: nope
2. Harvest something: Some sprouts
3. Preserve something: Apple cider jelly
4. Reduce Waste (recycle, reuse, reduce, repair or compost something): Put 4 resin patio chairs and a student desk out by the curb for “Free- Cycling” the chairs went the first day- the desk is still there, but will be donated to goodwill or maybe I have another use for it- we'll see
5. Preparation and Storage: mope
6. Build Community Food Systems: Went to a meeting with fellow SUBU members on starting a garden for the residents of Burien Heights, a low income apartment complex nearby- they have around 2500 people living there, and lots of space for a community garden!We are going to work with the boxes they have, and give them four of ours from the BIAS. The other four are destined for the High School (the one I dropped out of!) We will be doing all this on the 12th.
7. Eat the Food (cook or eat something new): some stuffed french toast stuffed with homemade apple cider jelly, some sprouts in salad, pumpkin puree in pumpkin soup

Melinda’s Growing Challenge: LAST REPORT OF THE YEAR! I got tomato seeds saved- Window Box Romas,Tumbler and Robin’s Egg, worked particularly well for me, so I am hoping their offspring do well next year. Other seeds saved- Acorn squash, summer squash, sugar pie pumpkin and banana squash- also saved a variety of ghourd seeds. This year I learned to not to fear the Heirloom tomatoes, growing a number of them not from seed, but as plant starts. For next year I am excited to try amaranth (your influence there Melinda!) I also had one prolific Hungarian wax pepper plant- Have been enjoying pickled peppers (this one plant gave me 5 quarts of pickled peppers- nice peppers with just a hint of heat) and was producing peppers until the end of October! Yes I saved some seeds from those peppers! I also have “Jurassic Kale” seeds given to me from a friends garden.

Meat Free Mondays: Big fail this week. Mom made lunch Steak potatoes and carrots- She said she forgot it was Monday so I ate the tasty lunch she made. Other than that I had a Vegan brownie for breakfast, and pasta and tomato sauce for dinner

Friday, December 4, 2009


Once again time for a 4R SuperHero award- this one goes to Mudnessa for thinking outside the box and making it new! She looked at the pretty imprinting on the inside of her "Yogi Tea" boxes and turned them inside out to make nifty little gift boxes. I, as esteemed and benevolent dictator of Rob's World do hereby decree Mudnessa a 4R super hero for thinking outside inside out of the box.
The 4R award goes to individuals who do something great for the planet by reducing, re-using, recycling or repairing, thus keeping items out of the waste stream. Not a meme, the recipient is allowed to post the fancy logo on the website, they don't have to print anything, pass it on or divulge any secrets of their lives. Just accept the award and know in their hearts they are a "4-R Superhero"

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

How to make a Lit Bottle Christmas Decoration

These are super easy to make all you need is
a small string of mini LED lights (I used a small string of Battery operated LED's)LED's dont not get hot!
36" of ribbon
a Glass Drill bit
First step, drill a 3/8" hole in the bottom of the bottle, then string the LED lights through it.
then pull the lightd out the mouth of the bottle, and wrap ribbon around the string of lights
Then push the ribbon and the lights back in
There you have a unique bottle ornament. This looks good with frosted wine bottles. Also can be done with glass blocks, forget the ribbon, just put the lights in the block after drilling the hole, then hot glue the ribbon on like a christmas package.
HINT: It drills so much easier if you have a drill press. If you don't just be very careful with your power drill.

This post is part of Trash to Treasure Tuesday on ReInvented blog

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Nothing New- The Weekly Challenge Update

Sharon's Independence Days Challenge- Year two, week 31
1. Plant something: Nope
2. Harvest something: Potatoes, Carrots
3. Preserve something: Froze Thanksgiving leftovers to use later

4. Reduce Waste (recycle, reuse, reduce, repair or compost something): Made a lit Christmas ornament out of a bottle and some LED Lights-
5. Preparation and Storage: Got the new light fixtures for the garage, started installing
6. Build Community Food Systems: Trying to talk Mom’s apartment manager into installing dome P-Patches
7. Eat the Food (cook or eat something new): Potatoes, Used thanksgiving leftovers- Used gravy for Biscuits and Gravy, Used Cranberry Cream Cheese dip as a filling for Stuffed French toast, Ate braised turkey, made some Crispy Fried duck ( A favorite Thai dish) out of leftover duckling
Melinda’s Growing Challenge: Did no growing this week or seed saving.

Meat Free Mondays: Ate the normal muffin at coffee, Mac and Cheese for lunch, Soup and salad for dinner. Fruit for dessert.

Ditch The Disposables - I should take more time off work! No sins this week! A lot easier when you don’t have to have your mug with you or you eat at restaurants real silver and cups

Buy Hand challenge: Taking a break this week from gift making, but I did buy Martin's present from a pawn shop!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

PAWNSHOPS- beating the traditional stores

I never here people talking about buying at pawn shops. They are a great source for Musical instruments, jewelery, tools. I bought Martin a guitar this year, they threw in the case for free!

Anyway - I think there is a stigma attached to buying from a pawn shop for gifts and such. Like you are taking someones last hope.

Well I think that pawn shops are a great place to buy from. Our local pawn shop sells some new items and mostly old. As far as the attachment of buying something from someone else's problems, I just figure they needed the money, and it was a pawn shop or go to the Check cashing store, And trust me those places IMHO are much worse. I used to use a pawn shop years ago. I would take my little TV in, hock it for $20 then payday came and I would go in a take it out of hock. LOL, I think I bought the same TV back half a dozen times. I have bought tools, musical instruments, electronics you name it from pawn brokers. Always satisfied, I think they should be added to your Low Carbon Footprint shopping choices this holiday.

Friday, November 27, 2009

TRUE CONFESSIONS: I made a purchase on Black Friday

Okay- I didn't mean to do it. I cannot resist small independent book stores. Especially ones with little old lady proprietors. With British Accents. But I digress. I was happily avoiding Black Friday and all it's consumeristic faults and had determined not to join in the bloodbath. But as I was walking with Romeo down (or rather up) 152nd AKA Main Street in Burien, I spotted a cookbook in the window of Burien Books that someone would want for Christmas. The owner of the bookstore is this charming, older British lady and while there was no Bookstore cat (that I could see). I was checking out and the proprietress looked out the window at my four pawed friend and said, "You know, dear, we are dog friendly in this store and he could have come inside". Well that sold me right then and there- I thought this is a display of anti-consumerism in the truest form- saying NO to the big box, corporate book stores and purchasing from an independent local seller. So while I sinned, a small bit, I also supported a local independent book seller. I don't feel so bad. And I didn't have to get up at 3:00 am either!

Thursday, November 26, 2009


Just want to wish y'all a happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Local Krumkake and Cranberry Cream Cheese Dip

Y'all know I celebrate my Norwegian heritage when making something for holiday dinners- this year I made Krumkake- a Norwegian/Scandinavian cookie that is baked on a krumkake iron and rolled like an ice cream cone. This year with a little difference- all my ingredients, except sugar, are local- the wheat for the flour is from Winthrop, about 190 miles east of here (that is stretching the 100 mile diet a tad bit) the eggs are from Yelm- about 60 miles to the south, the creme is from Kent, about 15 miles south of here. That's pretty much it, minus the sugar. I used my favorite recipe to make them, one from my mom's hometown of Edmore, ND, as it is the only one that doesn't call for butter or oil. The flour made a thicker batter than I am use to, but that's all right. I also made a cranberry-creme cheese dip- I made my own creme cheese following Ms. Chicken's Instructions as found in Mother Earth News

Then I make a fresh cranberry sauce (okay, I know cranberries aren't necessarily local- we do have cranberry bogs in Washington out by the ocean) Anyway I made a cranberry sauce following this recipe:

The I simply blend about 1/2 cup to 1 cup of Cream Cheese (I use the food processor for this). Rechill. Then I top it with the remaining cranberry sauce, or about 1/4 cup of sauce and rechill- serve with crakers. I am using locally made Oat biscuits from EAT LOCAL . Very tasty slightly sweet dip with a bit of twang! Combine that with local cheeses and crackers, that is how I am celebrating the local thanksgiving!