Thursday, March 26, 2020

WHAT'S FOR DINNER?



Hello, friends!  How are all of you?

Philadelphia is now on a Shelter at Home policy so it is much harder to leave your house.  I don't know about anyone else, but I am starting to go stir crazy.  One of the side effects of my medication is depression so that doesn't make things any easier.  We have gotten a lot of cold temperatures and rain so I have not been going out to the yard.  But today is supposed to be warmer and sunny so I am going to try to force myself to leave the house and go outside.  I know I would feel better.

I am sorry I had to put on comment moderation.  I just couldn't take all the hate spewing at me.  Well, now I see it but you don't have to.  Thanks for understanding.

But enough of that.  The one thing I have been doing is cooking.  There is no chance of us going hungry in this house.  Let me show you some of the meals we have been having.

We had left over Irish stew for St. Patrick's Day.  But I couldn't let this time of the year go without having ham and beans.  Well... I didn't have ham so used a can of Spam.  And beans?  Well, I used a package of frozen green and yellow beans and carrots.  Then I added some potatoes to the pot to boil.  It was good.  I know a lot of people don't like Spam, but I love it.  Joe thinks it's so-so.



On Saturday I found one package of pork chops in the freezer.  So I had those along with mashed potatoes and asparagus.  That fresh asparagus was a nice change from all the frozen veggies we have been eating.



Sunday night we ended up having a couple of ham and cheese hoagies.  We had a gift card for Wawa and decided to take a break from cooking.  It was so strange being there.  All the coffee/tea/hot water was taken away.  To get a cup of coffee you must ask someone behind the counter to get it for you.  You can't even put in your own sugar or creamer.  All of the doughnuts and muffins are individually wrapped.  No more helping yourself.  And there was a sign on the door saying that because of social distancing only 10 people at a time were allowed into the store.  A friend told me that she was at her local Wawa and they were lined up outside.  As one person went out, the staff would let one person in.  It's a different world, all right.  I am so glad that this is not going to be forever.  Although it feels like it right now.

Monday I wanted something different to eat and so made some baking powder biscuits.  They didn't last long and I think I will make some more soon.  It also saved our bread which is hard to get these days.



With those biscuits I had a chicken leg done in the air fryer and the rest of the asparagus.



Last night I made macaroni and cheese with the penne pasta.  I didn't think it was as good as usual.  I think I could have used more seasoning and cheese, but Joe liked it.




I also made pierogies and meatballs one night, but I didn't take a picture.  I fried some onions and mushrooms to put over them.  Such a nice change.

Another night I made hamburgers.  I went to RiteAid to get chips to go with them.  I couldn't find buns, but was able to get a loaf of bread to use.  And I bought the last box of Tastykake Butterscotch Krimpets for dessert.  For those who don't know what they are, they are an oblong shaped cupcake sized yellow cake frosted with butterscotch icing.

Image result for tastykake krimpets




For tonight, I have absolutely no idea.  I have to go out to the kitchen and see what I have in the freezer.  I'm thinking ham steak and left over veggies.  We'll see.

Take care, everyone.  I am so looking forward to this whole thing being over.  I think I will throw a party when that happens.

Kathy

Saturday, March 21, 2020

WE MADE IT THROUGH THE FIRST WEEK


Hello, friends!  How is everyone?  We are actually doing really well and enjoying our Spring.  We are having morning church tomorrow and Joe is the guest speaker while Pastor is away.  He is looking over his message now while I type this.

Our next-door neighbor is the worship leader at his church on Wednesday nights and has agreed to be the guest music tomorrow.  He has chosen some really great songs and I am excited to introduce him to the people that will show up.

According to what people tell me, we will have 6 or 7 people there tomorrow.  So we are not breaking any laws by meeting.  I film the message each week so it will be online for the other congregants to see later.

Well, we made it through the first week of all the shutdowns and cut backs in our country.  We haven't been all that affected.  We don't go out that much because we can't afford it.  And I think we are actually saving some money by things being shut.  But I feel so badly for those businesses affected by everything happening.  Some people are in bad shape moneywise from these cutbacks.

I am so sorry that I had to monitor my comments.  I basically let anyone say whatever they want as long as they are polite about it.  But when an anonymous person spews not only hate, but threats to kill me, I have to do something.  So please continue to leave me comments and I will get them on the post as soon as possible.  Thank you so much for understanding.

When rearranging the freezer earlier this week, I found a box of Pillsbury ready to bake cookies that I had forgotten all about.  So Joe baked them off for me tonight.  They smell so good.  And they will get eaten even if they do have a picture of a snowman on them.  πŸ˜‰

Every day there is so much that I want to do, but end up sleeping from my medicine and get nothing done.  It is so frustrating.  I really need a different blood pressure medication.

I am going to get off of here and finish the things I need to do before I go to bed.  Just wanted to check in with all of you.

Have a good night everyone!

Kathy





Friday, March 20, 2020

ARE YOU READY FOR DINNER? -- IRISH STEW



Hello, friends!  Hope you are having a good day.

Are any of you getting rude comments on your blog?  I had one yesterday from an anonymous person.  Of course they wouldn't want to put their name on it because it was awful.  I won't even repeat the terrible things this person wished on all of us baby boomers.  And if you happened to see it, I am sorry.  I took it off as soon as I noticed it, but it was put back on an hour later.  I removed it the second time and have been watching my comments closely ever since.  If it keeps happening I will monitor my comments, but I hate to do that.

In any case, it's a beautiful day today.  The sun is shining, the temperatures are in the 70s, and I am going to share a recipe with you.  This is the recipe for my famous Irish stew.  At least it is famous with my family and friends.  It is a good stew.  I got it out of the newspaper when I was about 17 years old.  They printed it on St. Patrick's Day along with a recipe for Irish Soda Bread.  I made the bread for many years but have since lost the recipe.  I copied them down in a recipe book since after lots of years of use the newspaper crumbled.  When I moved 40 years ago, I lost the book.  But I had shared the recipe for the stew with my sister and she shared it back to me.  So here is the Irish stew recipe for you.

KATHY'S FAMOUS IRISH STEW

1 1/2 lbs. lean boneless lamb or beef, cut into 1/2 inch cubes OR ground beef shaped into mini-meatballs
1 1/2 cups water
1  8oz. can stewed tomatoes
1 1/2 cups sliced onions
1/2 cup celery & leaves
1/4 cup parsley
1 large clove garlic, crushed
1 beef bouillon cube
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. thyme
1/2 tsp. pepper
6 carrots, sliced
8 small potatoes, peeled & diced
1 tsp. cornstarch

Combine lamb, water, tomatoes, onion, celery, parsley, garlic, bouillon cube, salt, thyme, & pepper in a Dutch oven.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low.  Cover & cook slowly for 1 1/2 hours.  Add carrots & potatoes.  Bring to boil, then reduce heat to low.  Cover & cook 30 minutes.  Blend 2 tablespoons of broth into cornstarch.  Pour into remaining broth mixture.  Cover & cook 5 minutes more until stew is thickened.



Hope you give it a try and enjoy it.

Stay safe,
Kathy


Thursday, March 19, 2020

TIME FOR A LAUGH



Hello, everyone!  Welcome to Thursday.  The weeks just fly by, don't they? I haven't gotten nearly enough done this week.  Spring is right around the corner.  Like 11:49 p.m. tonight!  Well, I count this as the last day of winter and spring begins tomorrow.  And it's supposed to get up around 80*F (27*C) on Friday.  I plan on getting some work done in the yard that day.

I am having quite a time getting things done because of all the side effects I am having from my high blood pressure medication.  Every once in awhile I skip a dose just so I can have a good day.  Not often enough to hurt me, but I just can't stand all the stuff it does to me.  I am looking forward to seeing my doctor in April to see if she can change it.

We went to church last night.  Bible study has evolved into a Prayer Meeting.  Prayer is certainly needed in this world.  There were four of us and we sat on the three sofas far from each other.  If any of you have a prayer request, please put it in the comments and we will be praying for you also.

This is a stressful time in our world.  We wonder just when the coronavirus will disappear and life will get back to normal.  Although I think like the time following the attacks on 9-11 things will never be "normal" again.  

With the way things are right now, I thought we could all use a laugh.  My friend, Carol, posts the greatest things on facebook, so I borrowed some to share with you.


 I wouldn't want that job!

How many of you read Nancy Drew books when you were growing up?  Here's the newest book in the series.

 Here's incentive to find a cure for the virus.




I used to work for the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia.  So I really enjoyed this cartoon.



My sister-in-law, Kim, owns a cleaning business.  She should try this for the duration.


Finally, this saying is so true.  We all need to laugh right now.  It makes us feel better.



Hope I gave you a chuckle.  

And finally I have been witnessing to people all over the place.  Jesus is coming soon and I don't want anyone to go to hell.



See you soon.

Kathy



Tuesday, March 17, 2020

ST. PATRICK'S DAY AND A GROCERY HAUL

Happy St. Patrick's Day!  I hope you are having a good day.  At times it feels difficult to have a good day anymore.  But I am doing my best to keep a good spirit about the world today.  After all, it's the "wearing of the green" day.  And I have just the shirt to wear.  A few years ago when Joe and I traveled to Tennessee we spent a lot of time in the Walmart there.  The prices were about half of what they are up here in Pennsylvania.  We both got St. Patrick's Day t-shirts.  I will try to get a picture of us to show you later.

On Sunday morning there were doughnuts for Fellowship Time.  I chose a St. Patrick's Day doughnut and had to take a picture to show you.  It was yummy.  I love the little shamrock sprinkles on the green icing.



Yesterday morning I went to Shoprite to do my grocery shopping.  I would usually wait until Tuesday afternoon and get my Senior Discount, but I was afraid there would be nothing left.  The Nursing Home has cancelled our Bible Study until further notice so I had time.  I was worried about finding a parking space, but although it was crowded, I had no problem.

I didn't know what to expect when I went in, but it really wasn't all that crowded.  Just the usual amount of people you would expect to see.  Maybe even a little less.  And everyone was pleasant and helpful from the employees to the customers.  You would hear "Excuse me, please" and "Thank you so much for your help" all over the store.  I thought, "This isn't going to be so bad."

The first aisle I went into was the produce aisle.  It was full to overflowing.  There was no shortage of fresh fruit and vegetables.  Even the bagged salad mixes was full.  That was the same aisle with the deli counter and there was plenty of lunchmeat and cheeses.

So let me show you what I got and I will explain as I go along.  They are in no particular order, just as I emptied each bag.

I had a coupon for olive oil and since I was almost out, I knew I wanted it.  But when I got there, the shelf was empty.  So I got another brand.  It is small, but I couldn't afford the large bottles.  I wanted elbow macaroni to make macaroni and cheese, but there wasn't one box in the store.  So I got the next to the last box penne pasta instead.  It will still be good.  I went for the instant potatoes and it was almost empty.  Just a few pouches of garlic and chives flavor, but no boxes.  Finally I found a couple of huge boxes of a brand I had never heard of on the bottom shelf.  But in back of them... one box of my brand in my size.  I grabbed it, and hugged it to my chest as I ran over to my cart saying excuse me to everyone I had to go around.  A gift from God for sure.  And finally in this picture is a package of napkins.  There were three packages on the shelf.  So I left two for someone else.



Joe asked me to get milk.  The milk refrigerator was empty.  Totally empty.  Not one carton or bottle.  I went over to the second refrigerator around the corner and found three cartons of lactose free fat free milk.  That was the only milk in the store.  There were several cartons of oat milk and a couple of soy milk but we don't drink that.  When I went to get the frozen veggies, there was almost nothing there.  But there were piles of bags of pierogies.  In lots of different flavors too.  I guess people aren't looking for Polish food.  But we love pierogies so I got two bags for 99 cents each.  A whole meal for 99 cents!



I had a coupon for a pork loin but they were out of that too.  I did get another brand and it was actually cheaper so good for me!  The chicken counter was completely empty on the bottom.  People were going along saying, "Where's all the chicken?"  But I stood on tiptoe and saw some packages on the top shelf.  I pulled one off and it was boneless, skinless chicken breast.  I don't like white meat, so I put it back.  I thought, "Oh well.  No chicken today."  And then I saw one package all by itself.  It wasn't the chicken thighs I wanted, but it was drumsticks.  The last one in the store.  I took it.  There was plenty of ground beef so I got a package.  There are so many things you can do with ground beef.  And I got a package of boiled ham lunchmeat at the deli counter.  The sausage was on sale so I got it.  I really like the brown sugar basted sausage and all they had was the original, but that's OK.


There wasn't a lot of frozen vegetables either.  The ones that were on sale were either empty or almost gone.  I was able to get the Asian Stir-fry vegetables and the green and yellow beans with carrots for 99 cents each.  The others were almost $2.00.  But I can use the Italian green beans and Brussels sprouts for several meals so it is still a good deal.  By this time I was so frustrated and starting to get really stressed and depressed.  The frozen food is almost the last aisle and I was so tired of trying to find my normal everyday shopping.  So when I saw the Pictsweet Farms vegetables, I took them.  Even when the one bag was the last one.  For a treat we will have the Harvest Vegetables with red potatoes and garlic herb sauce and the California Vegetables with cracked pepper seasoning.



I had a coupon on the eggs too.  But they were all out.  I did find a whole section of the store brand eggs which turned out to be cheaper than the coupon ones.  So I got a carton.  I also got salmon.  There was only three pieces of salmon left and the lady behind the counter said that was all they had in the store.  The lady in front of me asked for two pounds of it.  Fortunately there was enough for me too.  I asked for a pound but the piece was almost 1 1/2 pounds.  I took the whole thing even though it was expensive.  I figured I would get two meals out of it.



There were paper towels in large packages but they were so expensive.  I was able to get a two roll package and even left four packages on the shelf.  Cat food was another problem.  I buy the least expensive food I can for the outside cats.  Usually that means Meow Mix for around $4.50.  There were three bags of Meow Mix left and only the indoor cat formula.  I got one anyway.  It's food for them and that's what matters.  And I guess I was lucky I buy for cats because there wasn't any dog food at all.



One of the first things I saw when I entered the store was a huge pile of bags of Yukon Gold potatoes.  There was no price on them but we like Yukon Gold and we were getting low on potatoes, so I got them.  When it was rung up, they were only $1.99.



More fresh produce.  I got two broccoli crowns, a bunch of asparagus, sliced mushrooms and a bunch of bananas.  My stomach has been upset lately, so I got myself some candied ginger root to settle it.  The fact that I love it and could eat three times the size of this bag in one sitting has nothing to do with the reason I got it.  Why would you think such a thing?



Jack is a picky eater.  He doesn't like any cat food unless it is pate.  He will reluctantly eat something else if he is hungry enough, but usually he will turn up his nose at it.  So I looked and looked for cans of pate cat food.  Shreds, tenders, chunks, but no pate.  I was just about to give up when I saw one can on a lower shelf.  I took it and then found more.  So I grabbed 10 cans.  He eats half of a can a day so there are 20 days for him.



The last thing I went to get was bottled water.  I had heard there was a rush on water and it was hard to get, but I didn't expect what I saw.  This is the only picture I took in the store because this aisle had no people in it.  Empty shelves.




But see those large bottles of Poland Spring water on the top shelf?  I took two of them.  Better than nothing.  We use small bottles because with Joe's hand tremor it makes it easier for him to drink without spilling it all over himself.  But he will just have to use his covered cups for awhile.  Joe had put the bottles in the refrigerator before I got a picture of them, but here they are.  You can see they are a pretty good size.


That's the end of the shopping.  I counted up and I have about 15 meals in my head that we can have.  We will be OK for a couple of weeks and maybe by then the madness will be over.  There is just no reason to stockpile food and toilet tissue.

Last night I made Irish Stew for dinner.  It turned out good.  I am going to have the leftovers tonight.  And I will share the recipe later this week.  I got it from the newspaper when I was a teenager.  I have never made a better stew than this one.  As he was eating it, Joe told me it's one of his favorite meals.



And now I am going to end and get my day started.  I don't think there were be much celebrating today, but I am going to enjoy myself anyway.  Hope you will too.

Until later,
Kathy






Sunday, March 15, 2020

WHAT'S FOR DINNER?



Hello, everyone!  Happy Sunday!  I hope you have all had a good day.  Mine started out bad, but got better as the day went on.  

Not many people were at church this morning.  I don't know if the missing ones thought we were closed or if they were sick.  But we were happy for the ones that showed up.

So let me show you some of the meals we have been having over the past couple of weeks.

Here is dinner from Wednesday, February 26 that I found on my tablet when I was moving pictures over to my computer.  I made the Pioneer Woman's macaroni and cheese.  It is a favorite at my house.  That along with a few meatballs is an entire meal for us.



On Monday, March 2, we had a pork roast and some summer vegetables.  The roast was really tender and juicy.  The veggies were a little spicy which I really liked.


This is the new frozen summer vegetables I used.  They are from Pictsweet Farms and were new to me but I will get them again.  The cracked pepper seasoning was good.


We had the leftover pork roast the next day.  I added mixed vegetables and spinach noodles.  I didn't think I would like the noodles, but they were pretty good.  I put butter, salt and pepper on them.  I am not a big fan of noodles and probably wouldn't have eaten them on my own, but I am trying to use up all our noodles.  How did I get so many bags of noodles?


Thursday, March 5 we had baked salmon, corn bread, and fresh asparagus.  I love asparagus and we are coming into the peak season for it.


On Saturday, March 7 we had chicken thighs in the air fryer, mashed potatoes and mixed vegetables.  An old standby but so good.


Last Wednesday Joe had his veterans meeting so I had dinner alone.  I finished up the left over salmon and added a baked potato.  You can see it's on the sofa.  I usually eat watching TV when he isn't here.


And, of course, last night Joe had a pizza and I had pasta.




That's it for recent dinners.  Did you get some ideas for your dinner?  If I inspired you with something, please let me know in the comments.  I'd love to know what you made.

And now it's time to get tonight's dinner on.  I'm having breaded flounder filet, and some kind of veggie.  I have to see what is in the freezer.  With the scarcity of food in the grocery stores (or so I've been told, I'll find out tomorrow) I am going to have to be creative with our meals.  But I grew up poor and know how to make things stretch.  I know we will be fine.

Enjoy your evening and I will see you again soon.

Kathy



Saturday, March 14, 2020

A SATURDAY THIS AND THAT


Hello, friends.  Hope you are all having a great evening and being safe and healthy during this time of COVID-19.  So much of our life has changed.  Just about everything is closed down around here and I guess it is the same with you.

So to keep you occupied during this time, here is what has been going on with me.  I have not been sick, just very busy this week.  Blogger sort of gets pushed to the back when life happens.

Rick wasn't feeling well, so it was just Joe and me at the nursing home on Monday.  The meeting room was being used, so we met outside under the pergola.  The weather was in the 70's and so nice and warm.  It was wonderful to meet outside and the ladies all seemed to enjoy it.  It must be nice to get out of your room and get outside.  After the service we just hung around and talked to them for about a half an hour.  One of the ladies that I thought was in her 80s told us that on April 1 she will be 100 years old!  I can only hope I look and act that good when I'm 100.

Also on Monday it was a Full Worm Moon.  It is called a worm moon because this is the time of year that worms begin to emerge from their winter hibernation.  I went outside to try to get a photo of it.  This was the best of the ones I shot.  I didn't have my tripod set up and my breathing and heartbeat threw off a lot of them.  The line you see across the moon is the electrical line across the street from me.


Tuesday morning I taught the Ladies Bible Study.  We are going through the book of Titus.  I have never studied it so in depth before and it is so interesting.  Afterwards Debbie, Kathy and I stopped off at Salvation Army and made donations.  Yes, more things out of my house!

It has been a week since the time change.  I am still having a hard time getting used to it.  The day seems to rush past me.  Two hours seem like one to me.  One thing I don't like is that it is now dark in the morning when I wake up.  The sun doesn't come up until close to 8:00 a.m.  On Wednesday morning I took this photo from the kitchen window while making breakfast.  This was around 6:00 a.m.


About a half hour later it was beginning to lighten a little when I took this picture.  You can see the moon is setting and has moved behind the trees.


A sure sign of warmer weather is when the ice cream truck starts to come around.  Joe knows the guy across the street from us who owns the local truck.  We heard the music on Wednesday afternoon and I said I could go for some ice cream.  So he went across the street and came back with two sundaes.  They were good.  (Excuse the pile of ironing waiting for me in the background.)


Saint Patrick's Day is coming up.  I have the front window decorated.


And the front door too.  Sorry it's kind of dark.  This wreath of shamrocks is all shades of green and of course there are some sparkling gold shamrocks in there too.  I'll take a better picture of it in the daylight this week.


Today is Pi Day.  3.14 or March 14.  I was going to make a pie, but that just didn't get done.  So we had a pizza pie for dinner instead.  Well, Joe had the pizza.  He loves pizza.



I had Pasta Primavera.  It was good and I ate every bite.  And I don't like pasta!  It was penne pasta with tomatoes, spinach, sweet onion and mushrooms in a cheesy alfredo sauce.  I loved it.


I need to get off of here and get to bed so I can get up for church tomorrow.  Our congregation is tiny so we have no problem staying open.  At least for now.  It is less than 50 people so I think we are OK for the time being.  But our nursing home service is shut down for at least two weeks.  Naturally.  There are only 4 or 5 ladies in the Bible Study on Tuesday, so I am keeping that going.  Usually about the same on Wednesday night.  If worse comes to worse, I have lots of videos from Sunday morning still to post.  I got way behind on it.  Our people can still hear the word.  And there are a lot of other good messages on YouTube from some fantastic ministers.

Well, now I really will end.  As I do I will leave you with some computer coloring pages I have done in the last few days.  They are so beautiful that I had to save them.  My brother told me to print them out and frame them.  I just might.

Have a good night and I will see you later.

Kathy