Thursday, March 31, 2022

Birthday Celebration, Kayaking, Pizza and puzzle

 Not a whole heck of a lot to report on here, but we are definitely having a fine time. We celebrated Ed's birthday the other day, and between racing sports cars (SCCA) and riding motocross bikes competitively out in Texas, he was pretty sure that he would never make it to 30, much less 40. It got me to thinking about birthdays in general and how we feel about them.  

I'm sure we've all heard the anecdotes about how when you're a little kid every birthday is a huge, big deal, then, not so much in the middle years, then again, back to being a bigger deal once you've passed a certain age; my neighbor says (quite proudly) "I'll be 92 next month!"

We typically don't do much celebrating of birthdays around here beyond having a wonderful meal, (here or out), and receiving a suitable card. This year we did have a wonderful, full-blown steak dinner with all the trimmings, and we did have a lovely card, but we also gave a gift! (book), and a birthday balloon! and a lava cake with candle! Wow! who knew - it was fun to make a bigger deal about it. He also received some thoughtful, catch-up phone calls from good friends and family. He's certainly special to me so I'm glad I could help him have a memorable (or at least fun) day.

Happy Birthday, Honey!

Well, what else has been going on? Pizza night came around, which we thoroughly enjoyed.  I cheat and use a ready-made crust from the Publix bakery. I've found I can let it get really warmed up and loose and stretch it to a 10x15" baking sheet pan size. That ensures we'll get a pizza breakfast and a lunch too. 

Everything except the cheese.

Plus, some Italian cheese blend and Parmesan 

We had some beautiful weather the other day which Ed took advantage of by loading up the kayak and hitting Black Creek. What a beautiful area! Here are a few shots he took while out.

Where's the fishing pole?

Must be Turtle Rock

Serenity alert!

Relaxing in a secluded spot sipping a Dale's.

I have a closet shelf half full of puzzles, so I don't mind re-working them from time to time. I'm in the middle of a new one now, which I'll post a pic of later, but I also reworked the cat/bookshelf puzzle in between some jewelry making.

Really easy and so relaxing - zone out time, lol.

Well, I hope you're doing well and weren't too bored with, (to coin a phrase from the Old Fat Man), my efforts at trying to have too much fun. Thanks for taking the time.

Saturday, March 12, 2022

Rainy weather, assorted breakfasts and jewelry making

 We've been having a spate of rainy/stormy weather lately which makes me glad I shopped-up well on Wednesday. Earlier today, a warm front  passed through with strong winds, rain and a tornado warning for parts of the area. Behind it we're having strong, fresh westerlies which are  bringing in some delightfully cool, dry air, allowing me to open the windows and air out the house.

During these past few days we've been occupying ourselves with a nice mixture of chores, mild exercise (tai chi and light stretch bands for me, weights and strong stretch bands for him), cooking activities, youtube videos, reading and jewelry making. It always amazes us how fast the week fly's by.

6am this morning, gloomy and wet out front.
At least the bottlebrushes and azaleas are enjoying it.

12noon and all is well - sunny and breezy.

Since there's nothing new to talk about that doesn't include the Ukraine, politics, inflation or covid 😟, I'll talk about my passion for breakfast in all it's forms, but mostly involving eggs, lol. I'm a proud egg eater, have been all my life, and to me, nothing keeps me going throughout the day better than a nice, big breakfast.  Some people say "I could never find the energy at that time of morning to make a full breakfast!", or "toast or granola is fine", and hey, no judgement here. 

I do take steps to make it easier and less work to gen-up a nice meal, like making/freezing french toast in advance or using frozen, store-bought Potatoes O'brien, and making it my mission to always having a big bowl of fresh fruits cut up and handy. Here are a few examples.

Here's a favorite; egg on leftover pizza, fresh fruit & coffee,
it doesn't get much easier - nuke the pizza and fry an egg.

Here's a good one; scrambled eggs, sausage and french toast
plus fresh fruit and coffee.

Potatoes O'brien with diced ham, fried egg, and toast
plus fresh fruit and coffee.

And the last thing on my show 'n tell list today is a shot of the jewelry dabbling since my last posting. Some more fun, adjustable cuff bracelets and a couple of pendants that turned out pretty well. I'd be remiss if I didn't give some well-deserved credit to 2 of the wire-weaving mavens on youtube that I personally enjoy (there are so many!); OxanaCrafts, and Imbali Crafts. Wonderful, clear tutorials and great looking projects.

I'm pretty pleased!

 Well, thanks for checking in and I hope it entertained you for a few minutes! Have a great day.

Tuesday, March 1, 2022

1/2 way to summer and fresh food fun

 I always figure that by the first of March we are halfway to summer, although the weather temps are soaring like it's summer already some days. My sister, who lives in south central Florida, was saying how refreshing to have a 61° morning - a cold snap as it were, as she has been having mid to high 80's already. I think "robbed of springtime" is how she put it. Up here it's been about the same - 80's much of the time.  It does give the boss a chance to get out on the lake to row and enjoy the day.

We have a pair of swans on our lake that stay busy with patrolling the lake to chase off the geese and Muscovy ducks that try to hang-out. I'm all in favor as the geese/ducks can be messy.

Swans making a sweep.

The other afternoon our neighbor had a gorgeous heron on his deck railing. Nice to observe one in fairly close proximity. 

He's got his head tucked in as a
chilly north breeze was blowing.

After cooking that ham a couple of weeks ago I got to craving collards and cornbread, so nothing would do but to get a big bunch from Winn-Dixie. They tend to have a sale on them fairly often and the bunches are very generous. I get at least 6 supper time servings for the 2 of us out of a bunch, so I put them up in freezer bags and stash the extras in the freezer.

A fair amount of work getting them well-washed up before
chopping them up for my biggest kettle pot.

Also, I'm finally motivated to losing some the extra pounds I've put on during the pandemic, so in addition to cutting out snacking in between meals I've been eating my usual breakfast and having just homemade vegetable soup for lunch. 2 batches so far, and very enjoyable. The batch we're eating now has a small amount of ham for flavor, and uses homemade chicken & ham stock plus tomatoes, potatoes, carrots, celery, zucchini, onion, hominy, peas and corn. Much better than coldcuts, cheese and crackers.

I do doll it up with a bit of fresh parsley and some grated
extra sharp cheddar and serve with a few crackers.

Let's all b*tch and moan about food prices, specifically meat. I'm always trying to buy on sale or as a "bogo" (buy one, get one). This week W/D had thick cut center loin pork chops as a bogo, and these are delicious treated like a steak and cooked on the Ninja Foodie. Ed and I split one and usually end up with a nice bone portion to nibble on the next day. Lucky for us we don't eat a large portion of meat at dinner.

1 chop = 1 meal for the 2 of us. I use Montreal Steak
seasoning plus onion powder and marinate in a bit of soy sauce.

Last weekend after reading a few blogs that exhibited their delicious looking burgers, we decided to have a burger and fries for a late lunch.  So good and so filling. We enjoyed them out on the deck as the weather was perfect for it.

I prefer mine with sharp cheddar while Ed likes his bare.

Finally, I finished up the puzzle I had been slowly working on. It had some tough sections and so it took me a while. Plus I was distracted with jewelry making.

Last shot, some of the jewelry I've been practicing on lately.

Well, that's it for this post. Thanks for dropping by.