Saturday, January 30, 2016

How is that food storage going?

Canned Chicken was on sale
and beans.
Unfortunately,  the man before me in the aisle
took every can of sale beans off the shelf.

He must have had the same idea!

It did not stop me from making up ten dinners for my daughter's family.
They don't get any of the canned stuff.
Our local butcher 
had an abundance of chickens come in this week.
I could not pass up $1.60 a pound of local
organic
free(ish) range
FRESH chicken.
Sweet and sour chicken
Chicken with garlic and lemon
Peppered Chicken
Fajita chicken

and then
of course
my new favorite
Ground pork and apple sliders.

They butcher the community pigs.
Remember that we live in an Amish community.

The family will be well fed
while waiting for their newest family member.

What is it about honey?

There is a great deal to learn about international policies.
Most of that information there is no real need for
but,
sometimes,
you have to dig in.

It is about honey.
Honey, in my house, is local.
It tends to be expensive,
local honey just is.
It is our family cure for allergies.
We used to purchase the local fall honey for the winter
and then pray we have had enough to help with
my family's incredible allergies.

Now that we are "settled", the thought was that we could do without the local stuff.
So much cheaper to purchase at Sam's or Costco or the commissary.
We plunked down the bucks for local honey
and then bought some "store bought" bear honey :)
for everyday use.

Today, this article showed up on my feed.
Without forcing you to read for yourself
it turns out
China has been dumping honey on our markets.
They are attempting to crash our markets
and have been for many years.
The honey has been ultra pasteurize
and has no medicinal value.

We use honey in many ways.
One way is to help with cuts and burns
the spores help with the healing.
If they are not present....

Not only is Chinese honey ultra pasteurized
it also contains many contaminations
that are illegal in the US.
They get away with that by shipping their honey to India,
repackaging
and shipping it here to sell.
Evidently, that is not something the FDA has any interest in monitoring.

Back to local honey.
"Good" honey is also found at Trader Joes
and most Farmer's Markets.
And then there is one producer in ... Kansas!
It is worth the price for liquid gold!

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Time to ponder

It has been nice not to hear politics for the last two days.
We went from this
 to this
in short order.
Snow is wonderful!  Peaceful- until my husband decides to clear the place.
It is all good.

Before the storm began we cleared out all of our sheets and extra blankets
for the local shelter. Toilet paper, paper towels, some coats...
We had left over diapers from our family visiting.
Next time we will keep a few boxes on hand for
emergencies at the shelters.

This storm helped me see
what preparation really looks like.
We thought our pantry was in good shape,
but we need to stock up on certain items.
In general, we have always gone out to just get  things
Lazy.
We had a tremendous pantry in both Kansas and Flagstaff
but we were much more isolated in both of those places.

Here is my list at this point.
Regular Canola oil (we cook mostly with olive- but we could use back up)
Tomato paste
Tomato sauce
Tortillas
Corn meal
Milk bones (nothing worse then running out of fun dog treats)
black and white beans
LOTS of coffee!
Canned veggies (are there ANY good canned veggies?)

The order for spices will be done as soon as
the Spice House  has another sale.
We are good right now---but we now know what we want a lot of
The cool thing about the Spice House is you can purchase
their amazing spices
in sealed pouches.

There is some consideration of the LDS storage foods.
Hummm
My neighborhood is becoming a close society.
These might be good back ups.
We have a good mix of young and old families here.
Keeping people fed when cut off
could become important.

Off to figure more out.
Out in the snow
with the kids of the neighborhood.


Wednesday, January 06, 2016

Your past forms your philosophy

My twenties and thirties were spent on on three and a half
(Saudi is actually on Asia- but acts more like Africa)
continents.

My world view is skewed because of those years living abroad.
Lots of observation of religions
and cultures
and listening to others talk
and argue
how the world should be.

Several incidents stayed with me that helped form me
into the skeptical,
but intrigued,
person I am today.

My first encounter with "totally different"
was having a German polizei
throw his baton at a car
and it can screaming to a stop.
Man, you did not disobey the German police.
They will not hesitate to use that baton on your face!
Police are very different in different countries.

You'd better respect the people with power!

We went to Greece
on a train
We did not have passes and ended up in Communist Yugoslavia
Six Turkish men covered for us.
It was elaborate, but it worked.

People are generally good
when they feel you are generally good.

On a late night subway in Hong Kong.
A passenger said to me,
as he was pointing to the child seated next to me
"You know the plan is not to take the West over by military force,
but to dumb you down with those (pointing at the child's Tetris game),
and make your monetary system go wild.
The West cannot live without her money."

Be careful with things you cherish.

Another conversation was in Saudi.
"We are cousins, you see,
Christians and Muslims and Jews.
We are not really interested in taking down the people who
follow the laws of God,
we are interested in dismantling
the people who have no God."

Remember God is #1.

Those in authority are a force to be reckoned with.
People are generally good.
Don't let money be the source of your life.
Cherish the right things.
People with no god might find themselves in a world of hurt.
Keep my eye on the ultimate prize-which is not here and not now.

Like I said, my philosophy is a bit different.



Saturday, January 02, 2016

Move forward

Not one word, but two
Will define and guide my year,

Some of the things to enhance that year:

Let my spiritual side open up again.
Popping into Mass several times a week,
Adoration,
Checking out what is to be done in prison ministry.

My urge to save for the grands will help me establish the penny challenge
One penny, two pennies, three pennies more.
I think I will save three bottles.
The babies don't need on this year.

One large trip for my husband and me.
We blew the chance at Turkey
now it is a bit tooo crazy for us.
This will take some thought.

Continue and push forward exercising.
The Y swim aerobics are fun- but I need more.

Smile every, single day.
Smile was my word last year.
Gosh, it helped.
Keep it up!

Photograph the family at every chance.
As there are more of them
parents become overwhelmed and don't get those photos as often.
My thought is one good photo a month of someone
PRINTED.

Move forward.






Thursday, December 31, 2015

Random thoughts

The trip to Annapolis for fireworks begins today.


There has been feasting and walking and games and "potty chair" and baby laughter for the last eight days. The house will seem quite dull pretty soon.

Last year was pretty darn good, as far as years go.
New grandbaby
New house
Our relationship feels like a good pair of slippers
and
general contentment.

2016 looks very interesting
since we both LOVE politics.
Who will the voters actually choose
(not the television polls of 150 people)?
We enjoy watching and debating ourselves.
What ever happened to civil debate?
A debate for another day.
Which candidate will break out of the pack?
Debates
and then the election.
We will probably attend the

Inauguration

 of whoever wins. Of course that is two Januarys from now.

In the middle of political season
comes a huge blessing
A new grand will be born in April
or maybe March.
Their baptism will be
coupled with First Communion of the baby's sib.
Those events will be much more exciting.

We will do a bit of travel to see the West Coast family.
It is the year of fifth and tenth anniversaries of our children's marriages.
Yes, another great year on tap.


Saturday, December 26, 2015

It is time to be open.

Yesterday I spent an amazing day with the family.
Everyone was here with us to enjoy the toddlers.
And now it is time to really reflect the call of the Nativity.

A new season has begun.
Can we open our hearts and homes to strangers?
The refugee crisis- both Middle Eastern and southern border
seems to loom large in my heart.

I mentioned to a friend that if each Catholic parish took in one family
there would be more then 8,000 families cared for.
Let's extend that challenge to each church.
Look around
If each church took in one family-
even a single person-
and cared only for them for a year,
then what change would happen.

Let's extend that further.
If each community took in one family.....

You can only eat an elephant one bit at a time.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

No Snow!


Global Warming?
El Nino?
My friend praying for a warm winter?


Can you believe that we moved East and have no snow for Christmas?

We, 39.1619° N, are almost on the same latitude as Kansas, 39.1917°N,
and they have plenty of snow.
OK they are a bit more north.

Flagstaff is at 35.1992° N , but they are also at 7,000 ft. They, also, have snow. 
Dover is sea level (actually, 30Ft above sea level---whooopie)
Christmas will come, with or without snow. 
It will be the first one in three years that our small family will be under the same roof on Christmas night. 
All is well!