Monday, October 29, 2007

zen and art of household maintainence

i had a fantastic day. made homemade seitan and then used the simmering broth to make creamy chicken and wild rice with leftover roitesserie chicken from the freezer.

tomorow is bread day and im trying english muffins for the first time.

Sunday, October 28, 2007


i have a laptop now. in theory, i should be able to update more - with pictures, too. ive got some musings i have floating in my head ive been wanting to get out so now i should be able to. im so hip now it hurts.

and all the cardboard boxes are gone. we also installed the elfa shelving stuff this weekend in the master bedroom closet. it's finally a house. my hausfrau-fu has been a bit off lately so i havent been mastering too many projects. but i do have some post christmas knitting projects lined up.

until then, i need to weather strip. cant wait until the spring so i can roto-till the backyard and get the garden going. and the in-laws got us some power tools. yeay!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

niftiness catalog choice

saw this on yahoo this morning. catalog choice lets you opt out of recieving catelogs. awesome! im all for not recieve junk mail but also a big part of not spend money isnot being tempted by the shinies that come in the mail. magic cabin is my poison. not only do they send a catelog practically every month, but they also own hearthsongs which has almost the same thing and they add 2 new things to their catelog and send you another. one step ahead is just as bad.

we dont have recycling where i live so anything to simply reduce the amount of trash we make is good by me.

and while you're at it dont forget to stop your other junk mail, too.

product review: smart spin

i have always been a sucker for those "seen on tv" household products. i dont know what it is. i remember seeing them because they were to only things on sunday morning when my mom would braid my hair. i walked into bed, bath and beyond yesterday and they had a whole wall of the stuff so im going to make this a regular segment.

so paterfamilias bought the smart spin while on his last run to get stuff for the house. it's a smart (harhar!) idea seeing as you always seem to lose the lid for the container you have. i believe gladware even redesigned they containers to you might even have the same brand lid and container, but they wont fit. thanks, jerks. and because of copyright/patent/trademark/jebus, every brand has to be slightly different so there are infinate possiblities to be standing there in front of your cabinets wondering where the fuck the lid for this one is.

the one complaint i have so far is the containers are very small and a bit oldly shaped. the smallest is one cup. it's rare i have leftovers in only that amount. and it seems it is exactly one cup, not wiggle room left for air or liquid to slosh around. the largest size (4 cups, i believe) is still not large enought for your average leftover. and it's oldly shaped, to fit the caddy and the "only 1 square foot of space" that it advertises on the box. image storing your leftover southern fried tofu in an iced tea tumbler.

havent had the chance to run them through the dishwasher/microwave though it says they are safe.

so my rating (1-5)

on paper: 5 - whats not to love? universal lids, compact, it's fool-proof
in my house: 4 - weird size means im still going to have to go out and get more containers, though the small size makes it a good option for packing lunch and/or smaller portions for smaller people.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

on this episode of this old house

*cries oh so many tears* my lovely washing machine is not working. i can only get super hot water. damnit. so maytag is coming friday, which means it's back to gramma and grandpa's to do laundry. and i have to get a whole bunch of odds and ends stuff - like a sponge holder for the kitchen, a step stool. so it's thrift store time.

and here is a list of stuff that i want to do to the house. some is just a pipe dream and may not get done any time soon but, in no particular order:

put in pocket doors between bedrooms
build a shelving unit around the fish take
make/knit curtains for the windows
replace the locks
replace the shower fixture, and redo the bathroom in general.
build my compost bin
have the orginal (1940s) cedar panelling in the living room refinished
replace weather stripping around front and back door
get rid of all the weed trees and trash in the back yard.

and i finally have enough kitchen items unpacked to make a proper dinner. i think moving every now and then is good. in the process of going through the community pantry, i found three bags of lentils, two boxes of orechetti pasta and more tea than we could drink in a year. i need to talk to chef deb at vegsource to see what she can mcguyver out of our current stock

Friday, October 5, 2007

happy hausfrau

squuee!!! i have had wetdreams about getting a front-loader ever since they started getting big on the market a few years ago. and they finally came this morning. actually, i had this great witty post all planned out because i was convinced today was just going to suck major ass, but things worked out quite nicely.

last night i got the call that the washer/dryer was set to arrive between 7-11am. which is early as it is, but seeing as we arent living in the house just yet, and i would have to contend with rush-hour traffic on a notoriously crappy road, i was thinking i was going to have to pack the kids in the car at 5:30am and THEN sit around a house with no food or running water for the next four hours. this on top of the simple fact buddyone has been sleeping like shit and buddytwo is working on teeth, allergies, and an ear infection - if i didnt hate beer so much, id be well on my way to alcoholism this week.

husband stepped in and manned the house the first two hours and i came in later after going to city hall to get the water turned on, but ill get to that later. as im in the car, telling him im coming, the delivery folk call saying they will be at the house in 20-10 mins. somebody alert the media, home service people actually showing up between the hours they allotted you!

and then while im filling out the form to get water, he calls again to tell me it's done and there was a tiny dent in the back of the dryer and we will be getting $75 back on it! yeay, somebody loves me. i head to the house, and not twenty minutes later there's a city worker in my front yard and i can now flush the toilet! well not really, for some reason the tank isnt filling. called my dad but he hasnt called me back about it.

so my washer/dryer is so pretty. i cant wait to do laundry. now i just need to hang my line in the back. and now i can run the hose and get rid of some of the ugly shrubs in my front yard.