Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Two accomplishmenst this week or so

Last week, I used a recipe from I think it’s from this site) the lovely website, Dove’s Eye View Link, that I copied down several years ago. Put link here: http://bedouina.typepad.com/doves_eye/ If I have the wrong website for this recipe, look around at the place anyway. She has lots of interesting stuff here.

This lady has passed on since about 2-3 years ago but her site is a great place for info and recipes from the Middle East and Mediterranean. At least, that ‘s where my WASPy--Midwestern and farm cooking-- heritage mind puts her cooking. I believe she was of Lebanese descent.

I like this red lentil soup recipe a lot. I tried the Indian spices variation this time around as I like Indian food quite a bit. I think red lentil soup looks more appealing than green/brown lentil soup with it’s color. I also added some turmeric to the soup and that made the color more “golden” colored.

This week I tried a lemon and rosemary chicken recipe with chicken breasts. It smelled so good while cooking!

My basil plant has gone to seed, my thyme and oregano are still producing. I didn’t plant any other herbs this winter, I’ll see what I want to do about that next fall when it’s cool enough to plant again. My herbs never make it through the summer although there might be a first time.

My planning a tight budget the past two years and sticking to it has really paid off. I do have more money than I thought I did. As for taxes, I get two refunds--which was a surprise to me, I almost always owe and usually plan it that way.

And,it has dawned on me in the past month or so, that I can take Social Security this fall, if I want to. My tax guy called attention to that and ran some numbers for me. It's a chunk more money coming in so I have to consider to take it or wait some more. It doesn't increase my taxes that much, i'll have to see how I feel about it in a few months.

  peace, shamba

Monday, February 20, 2012

Gasoline Report

This is short; price I paid for reg for $15 worth of gas: $3.57
Price at expensive place two blocks for me: $3.65.

The Arizona all time high of gasoline (regular? average? not sure.) as of the NBC local afficliate and local news tonight was in July 2008 at $4.09. That was when a barrel of crude was about $150 a barrel.

that's all,

Greens/Potatoes/Cheese/Onions dish

Actually this dish also has onions and cheese as well in layers with potato and greens. It goes Potatoes, onions, cheese, greens, and repeat until everything is all used up. Seasonings or salt (whatever seasoning you want) go on top of the greens layers.

I used up the kale and the bok choy and I think I had to cook these a little more than usual because they are almost 6 days in the fridge and seemed a lot stiff. They weren't frozen just really cold.

After I drained the kale and made the layers and popped it in the oven, I was left with a lot of greens liquid. So, this will make a nice soup base in the next day or two.

This ability of learning how to use what you have and reuse leftovers is a learned skill.

Sabers and sword and all kind of metal things are being rattled about a war in the Middle East, US going to fight Iran. Iran has stopped selling oil to Uk and France because of latest sanctions.

Do we really have a good way and enough "boots on the ground" to be able to invade Iran? It's about 3-4 times bigger than Iraq. The Iranians would put up a big fight and I better much more than the Iraqis did in their insurgency.

peace, Shamba

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Beautiful February day

it's so terribly dry so far this year, no winter rains hardly but the days are beautiful. Lots of clouds this past week but no rain. Today it's just a beautiful blue sky day of 70.

Gas has begun a climb upwards to well north of 3.50 a reg gallon. $3.59 at the place I usually fill up and $3.65 at the more expensive stations. it climbs upwards every spring until mid-June (?). We haven't had $5.00 gas yet in Phoenix but we had $4.00 and a little more in the spring of 2008.

Cooked egg and grits dish today and burned some fingers! they're not burned badly but this dish will keep for a few days so I can avoid cooking so much for a couple of days.


Monday, February 13, 2012

Continuing My Blog

I've decided it's time to write down stuff in the blog again. Mostly this is just for putting my own thought down at a certain moment in time and then I can go back and check it in the future when I want to know what happened in that time period.
I found checking this at different times in the past 4 years very informative.

Actually, looking back at some things are also quite distressing. It tells me how far we've sunk economically and financially in the past 4 years--starting from the beginning of 2008--and we're still sinking. Us in the USA and the whole rest of the world. There is more fear from the prophets of the 2008 crash that we're just setting ourselves up for another bigger one. when? The guesses are that it could be 6months or any number of years in the future.

when I read this kind of stuff--and I'm sure they're basically right--I just want to pound on my keyboard and shriek " WHen WHen WHen is this damn thing going to really happen?!" I don't expect an answer. I know there isn't one although I wish we could tget to the "bottom" of wherever we're going so I don't have to deal with that expectation anymore.


I found extra curtains the right color for the second bedroom. At the JCpenny site; these will be the second pair of curtains to use in this bedroom. The first pair are just fine and usable but need to be washed often since my black cat like to sit in that window and rubs up against them all the time. I've been looking for a second pair to use in place when the first ones are pretty well "layered" with fur.

Waste Not: Cooked up the butternut squash and put the meat of the squash in the freezer for use when I want.

Gas Prices are up to $3.40-3.55 a regular gallon here.

Greece: More and more of Athens is being burned as the vicious bailout conditions continue. The Greeks would be so much better off without this bailout stuff; it'll be years and years of increasing grinding poverty and starvation and like no civilized human behavior if the bailout stuff goes on and one. the europeans enttities give the Greek government money and austerity orders; the Greek government hands the money right back in payment and the Greek economy tries more austerity and then there is less and less productivity and growth in the economy and more decimation of the Greek society. there must be a better way on their own!?


Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Abandoned neglected blog of Mine

Another neglected blog! Not neglected by all the others I used to read and have been ended for one reason or another, but another blog of MINE that just sort of ended. This is the third one! But it did have a specific purpose; to write down information about what I could do to "prepare" for major changes in the society I've lived in all my life.

I have still been cooking a lot still. I’ve added a couple of sauces to my regular repertoire of meal fixing; an easy pasta sauce and a curry sauce. I still have to look at the recipes but I’m getting better at them I also make a dozen whole wheat muffins on days, usually once a week or so, when I ‘m out of bread and don’t want to go to the store again too soon.

One reason I wanted to post is that prices of several things have been going up in the past year or so. Gasoline is going up again. We’re up to $3.48 this week for regular. We stayed between $3.00 and $3.30 for most of the past few months, since last summer.

When I started this blog, a one pound bag of lentils at my local Safeway was .70-.85 cents. Now, it is $1.89! A bag of lentils! Even beans and pnutt butter have increased in the past year or so. The peanut crop last summer was bad due to a drought in the southeast US and price for pnut butter went up around 50% around last October and November.

A loaf of bread, depending on the bread and the store, stays about $3.50 to $4.00 a loaf.

The store that was in easy walking distance of my house has closed. They didn’t go out of business; the owner didn’t want to renew the lease. A food store called Sunflowers is supposed to go in there but it won’t be up and running for a year. This is just a little inconvenient for me, but some of my neighbors really depended on the accessibility of that store.

I’m in my third year—2010, 2011 and now 2012—of having a CSA share. Our CSA can run all year round in Phoenix.

I’ve found that 3 neighbors and I are giving each other food. It’s just food that’s extra to the individual family and so they or I pass them on to someone in our small complex. It wasn’t intentional, it just developed! It started with me giving mustard greens to one neighbor and she gave me citrus and potatoes. She seems to be doing okay but I do have the feeling that one of these households could use some extra food. The person I give greens to is a pretty good cook and very often gives me part of a dish she has cooked CSA veggies with. It’s pretty good stuff. )

peace, Shamba