Monday, May 9, 2011

Monday - MPM 5/9 - 5/15

Well, another Monday is here...and almost gone. I have not had a good day. I am having a pity party for myself because my oldest child didn't take a couple of minutes to call me yesterday. Amazing how a little pity party can make you totally exhausted. I am just worn out, physically and emotionally.

I did not even have the energy to grocery shop. I still have to clean out the fridge before I do that. Thankfully, I don't need much because I did a really good job on the last shopping trip. Also, there just aren't any great loss leaders for my taste in shopping at least.

Okay, since I was so inspired by all the great menu plans posted last week, I have some great ideas for the next few weeks. Hundreds of posters post their plans at Organizing Junkie on her Meal Plan Menu weekly feature. Go check them out.

Here is what's cooking at our house this week.

Mon. - Swiss Steak, mashed potatoes and tossed salad with crescent rolls.
Tue. - Dinner at band boosters concert.
Wed. - Baked Chicken Fingers, corn, green beans
Thu. - MM Sandwiches (from Pioneer Woman), steak fries and tossed salad.
Fri. - Wrapped stuffed chicken breast, baked beans and rice.
Sat. - Steak, baked potato, okra.
Sun. - Burgers, chips.

The weather is so great, I may do a little baking so there will probably be some sweets about the house. Am also planning on doing a canning session to make some Ketchup. It is a family favorite around my house. Of course this is a result of the old cookbook I found I had. I asked my mom some questions about "back in the day" and it was so nice to see her eyes light up when she talked about her favorite "bump jelly" which was one of the hand written recipes I found tucked in the book. Grapes grew wild on and around her child hood home and they would gather those grapes while they were still green (as in not ripe) which turned a dark red (mom said she remembers them as purple, though the recipe states to cook them until they turn red) and they are were small round in size as they had no seeds so they looked like little bumps. It is comical the things that are remembered, especially by some one that is 84 and she is remembering back to when she was about 4-5 years old. We also talked a little bit about the canning that her sisters did. Her mother died before she was two, her sisters were all much older and they took care of her when she was growing up. One sister that was spinster moved back home and took over the household chores and caring for my mom. When mom was old enough to go to school, she would live with her two oldest sisters (both married) during the school year. Alternating sisters each year. It was handy, they literally lived a half a mile apart. Summers she would go back to the home place (she has always called it that) to live with her father. The home place was about 70 miles from the sisters and the closest school. At any rate, I asked her about the book describing home canning with tin cans. She said that a lot of people did that, they would can in tin cans their own meat and fruit. Her family however never purchased the equipment needed for that, they always used glass jars.

On that note, I was looking at a small pantry that I have and thinking that I really should clean it out. I notice some jars of jam and tomatoes. Now, I don't know about expiration dates of such things, my dad always joke that my aunt still had jars of peaches she canned during the war. But I know that the jars in my pantry are at least 8-10 years old. I AM NOT TAKING any chances. They are getting dumped, well the insides any way, and I will wash and sterilize the jars and reuse them. I also think that I saw my boxes of pint jars when I was out in the storage shed. A few days ago I was looking for something or other in a kitchen cabinet that is not user friendly, but did find a nice stash of canning jars in it that I didn't know I had. I found several boxes of lids, so am thinking all I have to buy is some rings. Another good note about those jars. I have an upright freezer, freezer compartment of my side by side, and then a freezer compartment on a regular fridge that we keep in the garage (mostly used for beer and milk) so you can see how easy it is to forget what I have in the freezer at times. I found a stash of whole chickens in one of the freezers and behind them was the very last of the plum juice my mom put in the freezer for making into jam. I just couldn't throw it out when we moved her out here, so in her little chest freezer we put the jars of juice, loaded it down with Blue Bell ice cream added some dry ice and it make the move from her home in Texas to here in California perfectly. Well almost, one jar broke but we won't tell mom that. She was so upset about all her work that was just wasted when we moved her, then she found out I took the juice, along with a few other tidbits from her freezer.

I bought some planters and replanted my tomatoes and impatiens along with a couple of indoor plants. Wow, three hours later they sure looked happy. I also took a long skinny planter and planted some cucumbers and lettuce. Tomorrow, I am going to go buy a hanging fuchsia plant that I spotted a few days ago and have decided I just got to have it for my patio. Am also determined to dig up my yellow miniature rose bush, well it is more like a rose stick at the moment. Imagine Charlie Brown's Christmas tree and then you are getting close to this poor guy. At any rate, I have some empty large planters laying about and am going to put that sickly little yellow rose and see if I can nurse it back to a blooming buddy. There is a story behind the little bush, and I will share it when I post photos.

Tomorrow night is my daughter's end of year band concert and the boosters sold tickets for a dinner. That means I don't have to cook. I really don't care for paying as much as we did for that meal, but am viewing it as a charitable contribution.

Guess that is about all for tonight. Need to get some rest so I can actually do at least some of the things on my "to do" list. Between my list and working out at the gym, I will be very busy this week. Which is a good thing. Also, one of the meals this week I will be doubling and freezing half of it. I am going to do this quite a bit over the next few weeks, have decided to put some meals in the freezer for my son and his wife for when the baby arrives.

Thanks for stopping in and check back again soon.

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