Thursday, June 4, 2015

Five Fine Things

1.  Freezer Cooking Ahead ~ We got ground chuck on sale for $2.99 a pound.  Score!  So I spent one morning browning 3 pounds for the freezer (quick taco or spaghetti meals.)  I made 2 lbs into meat balls which I froze on a cookie sheet, then put into a freezer bag so I can take out the number I want for a meal.  And the last 1 1/2 lbs. became a favorite comfort food...Blue Plate Patties.  
This is a Taste of Home recipe from 1999.  And they are delicious!  

I fit the recipe to what I have on hand, which usually means a packet of brown gravy mix, canned mushrooms, and no horseradish.  But they are so good with mashed potatoes.  The men in your life will love you.  :)

2.  Things growing at my house ~ This Missouri Primrose perennial was given to me by my neighbor in Michigan back in 1999.  It moved to Chicago with us where it grew and spread for 10 years.  And when we moved to Southern Indiana 5 years ago, a chunk of it moved here with us too.  It's now like a long-time friend.  

My first Gerbera Daisy in a few years.  My favorite color this year is 'coral' so that's why this pretty girl came home with me from Lowes.

I call these Lindsey's Daisies.  They moved here from Chicago with me too, and they always bloom in June, the birth month of our only daughter, Lindsey. 

Our little 4x8 raised vegetable garden is full.  So in order to grow Bell Peppers, I had to plant them in this little plot of ground under our utility meter on the side of the house that only gets afternoon sun.  I didn't know how they'd do...but they have grown 3X bigger than the Banana Pepper plants in my veggie garden in full sun.  Go figure.  Looking forward to yummy peppers in a few months!

3.  Semi-Homemade Salsa
John and I LOVE this salsa.  We like it better than most name brands and we like it better than salsa made from fresh tomatoes and canned.  So I am experimenting by making some ahead and freezing it.  My cilantro will soon be going to seed, and since we love cilantro in our salsa, I knew I had to make some quick.  I made four blender batches of salsa and have frozen them all.  

Easy recipe...ready?
For one blender batch, add 1 can stewed tomatoes, 1/2 rough chopped onion, a spoon full of canned jalepenos, 1-2 teaspoons of minced garlic, 1 teaspoon of lime juice, and a handful of fresh cilantro.  Process on the lowest you can, so you don't pulverize it.  When it has a consistency you like, stop the blender.  Bam!  Tastes like restaurant style and is completely addictive.  I've already unfrozen one batch to use, and if it ends up alittle juicy from the frozen tomatoes, then I'll just spoon alittle of the juice off of it.  But I'm thrilled to have our favorite salsa in the freezer, ready for use.  Will def. make more this summer.

4.  The Give-Away-Garage-Sale ~ This morning on my morning walk, I came across a large garage sale being set up.  The lady told me she'd open at 11am (!!) but that I could look around.  She's cleaning out her mother's home of years of pack-rat-ing.  I did pick out 2 things right off the bat, and she quoted me a price I couldn't believe (nothing was priced.)  25 cents each!  I told her I'd be back with money around 11am.  Of course, by waiting til 10:45am, alot of the good stuff was GONE!  I guess I learned my lesson...those who obey garage sale start times miss out.  :)  But that's okay.  The wind chime above was one of my finds.  25 cents.  My back yard is making cheery music now, and I'm thrilled.  Was hoping to buy one in Michigan on our vacation, and this find saved me $20 or more!

Here is one of my other finds.  This adorable, 1950s cookie jar is exactly like the one my beloved Grandma had.  I had purchased one like it for myself for $10 a few years ago at a garage sale, thinking that was a steal.  But this little gal came home with me for $1.  What?!  They go on eBay for $70 and up.  This sweetie will be offered to my daughter first, then to my neighbor whose Grandma also had one.  I used to gaze at it as a girl and think how tasty all those decorative cookies looked.

5.  Our little piece of Paradise ~ My John and I are yard people.  So after living here 5 years, we've finally gotten the yard about how we want it.  Cool mornings and evenings on the patio swing are the best.  So is lunch on the swing.  Enjoying the things that are blooming, and eagerly awaiting the Rose of Sharon and the Butterfly Bush to join in.  There's a new climbing vine with orange flowers coming soon's growing and starting to climb the fence, but is currently hidden by Bee's Balm and Daisies.

Thank you for coming over today to share the fun of my week!



1 comment:

  1. Oh my much do I LOVE this blog entry??!!! Did you know that those Blue Plate Patties are one of my most loved recipes from TOH? So fun that you love them too. Your flowers and yard are beautiful. Sigh. I look forward to next year when I will have more energy and time to spend on our yard. I didn't plant anything this year--just no time--but I'm okay with that. Love your wind chime! I have them on my deck and my front porch---they are so soothing to me! And the cookie jar for $1??? You hit the jackpot with that one. I really need to try the salsa--it sounds amazing.


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