Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Last Trash Out Of The Day

I was reading about a company in California that cleans out foreclosed homes on the New York Times website. Anything over 35 cubic yards is considered a "big job". We dumped 40 cubic yards at my dad's house. And we need to get another smaller dumpster when we return to finish the job.

Yesterday, no plant watering at work. I learned how to serve the customers at the cash register. I did better than some of the high school girls who will be cashing people out later in the summer. That is something. I had to call for help a few times. And I had to, purposely, remember where I was was working before answering the phone. Not the library.

Today I will be organizing my thoughts for my Vegetable Gardening talk on Saturday morning. Tomorrow or Friday I will copy my "handout" for the people who come to listen to me talk. I give them Chapter 13 in the Master Gardener Class Book. More than they wanted to know but everything they need to know. I will focus on "location" and "containers" this year as sometimes (often) the only south facing part of the property is the driveway or patio. Or it's the front lawn. And not many homeowners are willing to dig up the lawn so they can plant beans. I used to grow cherry tomatoes in front of the porch steps in my front yard. Nice little sunny spot. Two big wooden containers. Easy and delicious.

I received several excellent hints for getting through my list of detestable tasks. "Eat the Frog" was my favorite. Do the worst thing on the list first. I spent a very amusing bit of time on that. Trying to figure out which item was the worst. LOL.

Monday I went out to the grocery store and bought supplies to make meatloaf for dinner. It was excellent (I used Lipton's dry onion soup recipe) and made all the remaining potatoes into a large pot of mashed potatoes. We had the leftovers yesterday. I sliced the leftover meatloaf into thick slices and panfried them in a bit of oil and butter.

Today I am making soup. I know. I'm not supposed to make soup on Wednesday. But G is working late today and soup is a good thing to eat at 7:30. Chicken Noodle for him and Bean and Escarole for me.

My lunchtime salads continue to be remarked on by my co workers. They are amazed by how good the salad looks and by the number of interesting and colorful ingredients. I have said many times that "I am worth the effort it takes to make a nice lunch". And really, it's not all that much effort. While preparing dinner, I prep a few vegetables for my salads (not all of them the same evening) and pack them into containers. In the evening, or in the morning, I just open containers and spoon a bit of this, some of that, into my larger salad container. And I mix Ranch, mayo, corn syrup and honey into a small container as the salad dressing. It tastes GOOD. Carrot sticks, black olives (sliced), diced red bell pepper (on sale this week), romaine, wheat berries, Chinese lo mein noodles (crispy instead of croutons). I have Greek olives, Feta, and homemade croutons if I want to switch it up. K had sprouts, green onion, shredded cheddar and grape tomatoes in containers for our salads in Atlanta.

If I don't care enough about myself to take "good care" who will? We (G & I) spend a bit extra on really good coffee beans, fresh salads, linen sheets, down comforters, 100% cotton or linen clothing (which I iron on good days), Smartwool socks and TiVo.

I have my "cheap and thrifty" side also. I wash and reuse aluminum foil, steam bags and plastic storage bags. I rarely raise the temperature in the house above 64 degrees (most zones are at 60). I compost everything (a pail sits on my kitchen counter), recycle every scrap of paper, cardboard, glass and aluminum can. Grow vegetables and eat them. Wash clothes in cold water. I have been asked to try and NOT use my clothes dryer. I don't think that will work for me, though my daughter had G install screw eyes in the beams in her basement ceiling. Marked out in precise rows. She hangs her wet clothing on plastic hangers and then onto one of the hooks and everything is dry by the next day. And nothing fades or shrinks. Or needs ironing. The laundry resembles soldiers in formation. OCD.

But I have stopped wearing baggy sweatpants and blue work shirts as my "daily uniform". All the sweatpants are gone and it's time to send the dozen blue shirts off to Goodwill. Now I wear corduroy pants and a sweater. And can "go out" in public looking less like a postal or prison employee and more like .... well, whatever I look like. Someone's Nana? The dog's walker?

I wish I looked more like an artist. Crazy colored spiked hair, outrageous clothes. Oh. That would be more along the lines of "Rock Star". Could that be what I really want to be when I grow up? A Rock Star? The "Rock Star" of Fabric Collage. O La La!

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