Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Dump Cooking

It seems like every ten years or so, a type of cooking becomes popular, promising that it will provide nutrition, save mom time in the kitchen and be easy clean up.

Anybody remember the “Meals In The Freezer” movement? Or the crockpot movement? Caserole Movement? One pule one cooking? Personally, I still practice all of these movements when I

can. I might not be able to have a full 30 day supply of dinners in the freezer, but it is still nice to have five meals in the freezer. Or even one, truth be told.

So how did I misss the “Dump Movement” of cookery? Oh did you miss it too?

The “Dump” method calls for you to have some recipes and supplies like zippered freezer bags, measured amounts of chopped onion etc on hand. Then quickly, because you are dealing with frozen food, package each raw meal and place it in the freezer to freeze solid. When you want to use the meal, let it defrost in your refridgerator all day and then back for about an hour in a caserole dish in your oven. Easy peasy. And the recipes seem really yummy.

The problem for me is one, the use of so many non safe to recycle freezer bags. Second, the components for some of the yummy sauces are bound to stick to the bag and be a real pain to try to get onto the meat. So for me, the “Dump Meals” as they are written, are out. I still plan to cook them, but not in my oven, I plan to get everything ready in my crock pot, and not have to worry about honey sticking to the bags.

But check out this wonderful website for some delicious Dump Recipes:

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Happy Birthday America

This could have been the unexpected , double -dip of Fourth of July Celebrating if anyone wanted to take advantage of it. I guess the word wanted, could have also been replaced by the word able also. Nate was off from weekend to weekend, so if we had chosen, we could have really had a celebration that lasted all week, or two celebrations. We didn't though because we are suffering from Big Family Turned Small Syndrome, just like the child who can't play by himself, but must have many companions.

First one son couldn't make it, then the second son couldn't come either, third son was iffy, and I had to go to the hospital.

To paraphrase from “A Christmas Story” - goodbye meaty scent of BBQ, so long creamy tater salad, adieu toasted marshmallows, not even the heady smell of a charcoal fire.

We'll celebrate later in the month, even with some birthdays thrown in, but no double dipping this year... Just memories of a red bell grille, flag cakes of culinary kitchens passed, Frisbee and softballs and water balloons, fire fly hunting, and fireworks.

Happy Birthday America!!!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Be Thankful!

Today as I'm reading the July 2012 Family Circle, I happened upon a short blurb about thankfulness.  It reads "Being thankful has been linked to deeper sleep and less anxiety but a recent study at the University of Kentucky shows that it also helps you to control your temper."

You would think that being thankful would be relatively simple; be thankful for your health, for your family, for living in a free country.  People have even been thankful for summer skies, summer vacations and just the change of pace that summer brings.

But what if everything I've enumerated isn't something that you can be thankful for?  Then what?

It's very important to have something to be thankful for, or at least it seems like it, for your health.  So try using these as jumping off points to find something to be thankful for.

1.  Have a job?  Be grateful.  So many people don't.  If you are one of the ones without a job, why not try being an entrepreneur?  I would suggest Avon, or something that, like Avon, has a range of prices and so can fit anyone's budget.  Take out some books on guerrilla marketing and party plans from the library, and sell seriously!

2.   Do you have old family photographs?  Isn't it nice to be able to reminisce about times past? 

3.  Establish a weekly movie night, either with family, friends, a combination of the two, or by yourself.  With public libraries lending DVDs, there is no financial reason to not have a movie night!

4. Popcorn.  Be grateful unpopped corn is so inexpensive! And multifunctional.  It can be popped for your movie night, scattered in tomato soup, and robed in homemade caramel to make decorations of popcorn balls for your Christmas tree!

5.  Texting.  I'm grateful for the one line texts or voicemails that my faraway family and friends send me, often for no other reason than to say hello, they're thinking of me.

6.  Letters.  They take so much longer to write, they are way too expensive to spend now that postage for first class mail is just under 50 cents, but they are a delight, as are postcards.  Everyone of them goes into a paper mache box I have just for that purpose, to be savored over and over!!

What little things are you grateful for?  What little things warm your heart?


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