Wednesday, June 25

Keeping Food Fresher Longer

This post originally appeared on By Hook or By Cook.

I have a tendency to purchase in bulk, thinking it will be a better deal. Unfortunately, when the bulk of my purchase spoils, all I've ended up doing is making expensive garbage. Here are a few ideas I've picked up along the way to help my food last longer.

  • Cheese: wrap loosely in waxed paper and cover with foil before placing it in the fridge
  • Butter: freeze butter in its original box inside a plastic bag
  • Greens: wrap gently in a paper towel inside a plastic bag or line a hard-sided container with paper towels
  • Fresh Herbs: cut ¼" off then end of the stems and set them in a cup of cool water as you would fresh flowers
  • Meat: divide larger packages of meat into your usual meal sizes and freeze in sandwich- or quart-sized zipper bags inside one- or two- gallon zipper bags
  • Ice Cream & Popsicles: keep frozen treats toward the back of the freezer, away from the warm drafts of an open freezer door
Find more tips and ideas at Rocks in My Dryer.

Tuesday, June 24


I was reminded today that it is sixteen years this week since my mother died.

Sixteen years ago, I was a child. A high school student just a week past the final exams of her junior year. I had little prior experience with death, only one grandfather who'd passed away when I was five.

I didn't know what to do with myself. Mom had died just before five a.m. Later that morning, I sat in our entry hall, watching the sun slant through the opening of the screen door and asking myself again and again, "What am I going to do without a mother?"

I could hear the traffic outside. Cars drove by, neighbors went about their daily routines, school children shouted and skipped and giggled. It was surreal to recognize that it was just an ordinary day for everyone else. My existence was irreparably altered, but the rest of the world moved on, as if nothing had happened.

Grief is a slippery thing. It catches you at the oddest moments. I've now lived nearly as much of my life after my mom's passing than before. Most of the time, it's a minor footnote in my biography. Today, though, I feel the loss as an ache, deep in my chest, flooding out onto my cheeks.

Friday, June 20


I've been wanting to try something a little different with my quiet time. Well, honestly, I've been wanting to try to have a quiet time on a regular basis again. Once upon a time, back before I was married and had a child, QT consisted of reading though a book of the Bible while journaling and praying as the Spirit led. While I think that's a great system for somebody who has a lot of time and few demands on her schedule, that's just not me anymore.

So, help me out here:

What do you do to make sure your keeping up with God on a regular basis?

Is there a particular devotional guide that you enjoy? Do you have your own system of reading in the morning/praying in the shower/journaling after the kids go to bed? Feel free to link to your favorite devotional website or book, just please format your hyperlinks (as below), rather than spelling out full addresses.

Text Hyperlinks

Set your code up like so:
<a href="">Experience Imagination</a>

Once the comment is published, you will see this:
Experience Imagination

Thursday, June 19

Something About Transitive Verbs

My daughter came over to me this evening holding a crayon to a pad of paper.

She: I'm the order.

I: You're the orderer?

She: No, I'm the order.

I: You're the order? I'll order one of you.

She: I'm the order. I order you! Whaddaya want?

You could almost hear the bubble gum snap.

Monday, June 16

Going ... Red?

I'm all for saving the planet. Really. I think it's a nice little habitat. Still, there's a balance. Exactly how much am I willing to give in order to ensure that fewer greenhouse gasses are headed into the atmosphere?

A few weeks ago, after spending an hour with our old-fashioned push mower (the kind that is powered by nothing but the effort you put into pushing the blades around) to get half the front yard looking chewed on, I threw in the towel. I told Adam I'd had enough green, and sent him off to the store to buy a gas-powered mower.

When it comes down to it, I discovered that while I'm willing to work a little harder to be greener and (especially) to save money, working twice as hard with our old mower to have a lawn that looks twice as ratty as our neighbors' just isn't worth the trouble for me.

So, if they announce next month that the ozone layer has another hole and it's over the midwest this time, you know who to blame.

Sunday, June 15

Adjacent, Phonetically

We bought a new camping lamp that doesn't use and batteries or kerosene, but has a hand crank for light. It's pretty nifty. My daughter likes it a lot.

Which brings us to the subject at hand.

I was catching up on some blogs with some friends on the computer and she was powering up the lantern, wandering over every thirty seconds once in a while to show me how the lights go on and off.

Apparently I wasn't paying enough attention to her, because she started climbing up on the file box near my feet in order to push the lamp closer to my face give me a better view. She lost her balance and her grip on the lantern, the latter scoring a direct hit on my keyboard. The letter "J" popped right off and I heard it hit the wall to my right.

Mama never said there'd be days like this!

P.S. Anybody still wondering about the title?

Saturday, June 14

Not Dead

I've been gone for about a month. Not gone from the house, mind you. That would have been nice ... a little excursion to the south of France to start out the summer ....

Oh, where was I? Right. In the house.

Basically three major things happened all at once and left me little time (not to mention energy) to blog.

Thing One

About two months ago, I started working on a new marketing plan for an organization of which Adam is a member of the board. The past three weeks have involved a lot of effort to get the pieces of that finalized and working together. There is still more to do--lots more to do--but we've got a good start now, anyway.

Thing Two

I threw out my back. Ouch. I was playing with my daughter at the park over Memorial Day weekend and suddenly I couldn't stand or move without excruciating pain. I spent about a week mostly in bed recovering and have had to completely eliminate dairy products from my diet. I am feeling much better, though certain activities still leave me a bit achy, like spending time at the computer.

Thing Three

Adam's show opened two weeks ago. It runs through next weekend. We haven't seen a whole lot of each other lately.

Anyway, there you have it: my best excuses for not being around. I'll do my best to update more often in the coming weeks, but since typing is still a bit ache-inducing, I have been trying to keep it to a minimum.