Happy Earth Day!

Have you thought about how you eat being related to the state of the planet? Do you actually do something besides “I think that is a great idea. I will give it a try!”? I confess that my efforts have been small. It is so easy to go for the easier way through the store and through the kitchen. I really want to work on this though. I suspect the driving factor is that food waste does cost us a lot of money. You should have seen the guilt on my face as I cleaned out my spices and one of our cupboards recently.

Don’t know why it matters? Read this post: Why Your Personal Food Waste Matters

Need some recipes to make with “dead” food or scraps you’d throw out? Check out 5 Recipes to Reduce Food Waste

What do you do to help reduce food waste in your household?

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I love Rock and Roll…and Women

As we planned our weekend in Cleveland to visit our Freshman College Girl, we decided to skip “Parents’ Weekend” activities. I want to see the library from the inside but other than that–breakfast with the President of the college isn’t high on my list. I prefer breakfast with my baby.

Denise was in agreement about this as was College Girl. She then read up on Cleveland and made plans. I said I wanted to go to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Denise was slightly surprised about this but I explained “I’ve never been. I’ve never even actually been to Cleveland.”(other than to drive through/by) After saying that, I didn’t really inquire into our plans though.

Day 1 was a flurry of typical Denise trip places–she planned well for the vegan daughter, the quirky us, and of course, herself. I figured, ok–rock will have to wait. Then I learned we would be going on Sunday. I groaned because “Time! It will take all day!” and I didn’t want to be getting back late at night. But, ok. We invited one of College Girl’s roommates (her parents were in CA and couldn’t make it for the weekend and hey, what is one more stray. I made sure to let her know she was welcome to come home with RJ if there were breaks she didn’t have somewhere to go.) Off we went. First we stopped at a vegetarian breakfast place. (where RJ ate something that looked like dinner in my book) Roommate had to be back at the school by 2 for some study thing with someone.

Then we were off to Rock. Ok, we were off to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. I was in love from the time we walked in. I COULD have spent all day there. There were movies that we missed. We certainly couldn’t read every single thing on every single sign. It reminded me of the Smithsonian Museum of American History in that way. But, here is where I get grumpy. I am pretty sure there are more First Ladies than women artists showcased in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

That isn’t to say I wasn’t entranced. I mean–OMG Rock and Roll. I’d certainly go back again and again and again. And if you are a music person who wants to buy music in a non-digital way–it looked like they had a good selection. But, when I ended up in the gift shop–blah. If I had a tot I wanted to blanket in Rock propaganda–I was good. If I was a guy-sure. If I was a woman (and I am) I was limited to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame version of oh, I was going to say “Legos for Girls” but really–not even that. I was irked. I mean point me at a gift shop and I can find something that intrigues me. But really, there? I wandered through and then double checked, then left.

Not only do they need a better representation as a whole in the museum of women who rock–but also consider that women might want something more than a pink glittery tshirt saying I heart the rock and roll hall of fame.

Hi There

After August 18 and a good run in August…something happened, ok a lot of things happened. Pippin and Jenn and the rest of the family and some friends were here. Other things happened that left me a bit trauma struck. Then it was a lot of stuff. Plain STUFF. Complicated STUFF. Now it is November 1 and of course everyone is either writing the great American novel or blog this month so there is peer pressure. So, I will try again.

I was thinking about doing a month of cranberries but didn’t think about it at the supermarket this morning. So…that is out.

For now, hi there! How are you doing?

Ma Ingalls Had the Right Idea

There is a lot in the world I can’t fix right now. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) I fall to my mother’s fall back when life overwhelms: I clean.

It is a good time to clean anyway. We will have a house full of family and guests next week. But, that really isn’t what spurred today’s project. As everyone knows, the dogs have taken over our lives and our bed. Even not in our bed (for long enough that I fall asleep and/or Denise gets tired of shooing them off, they do have dog beds in our room. I should sleep on them.) they are in our room.

Something you may or may not know–there is almost always someone in our bedroom when we are home. It is the heart of our home. You might find it odd. Of course, if we are in our room–the dogs are as well. That is why most of the dog pictures are of the dogs on the bed. Like this one:
dogs (2)For the past couple of days, the odor was back. Eau de Dog! I thought I had eradicated it with washing all the linens. But it never totally went away and then it was BACK. What could that odor be? The dogs were gassy. The weather had been wet again. Maybe Buster had made another adolescent attempt at being manly?

My old housekeeping manuals seem to skip over this particular problem. In those homes of yesterday, the dogs slept outside in a dog house or something. I don’t know.

I woke up this morning and did my morning runs. I started to make the bed and THE ODOR. I had enough! So I stripped all the linens again. I glowered at the dogs. I threw the linens in the wash. When they were clean I started to make the bed. I ended up nudging the bed away from the wall. Ugh! Dust bunnies. NO! Dust DOGS! Yes, the weekly sweeping and mopping of the bedroom had missed that key area. The foot of the bed and the visible under bed area  was clean. I grabbed a broom and the dustpan.

Sweep. Shift the bed so I can sweep more. Shift it more. Unplug things so I can get the dust dog off the power bar. Remember that I need to sweep under the cubby–something I noticed last Sunday when Denise was doing her weekly cleaning. Hmm let me grab the magic eraser to get that mark. Oh there seems to be accumulated Coca-Cola spray here. I go to shift the bed back. I swipe at some marks on the door. Ugh. Wait! The wall has well…dirt on it. When you can see the wall and not the shadows….dirt! Ugh! Ok, magic eraser now dead. Fill a container with water and cleaning fluid. Get some cleaning rags. Oh drat! I seem to have wandered into my mother’s territory of washing walls and baseboards. I washed the one behind the bed and bedside tables. I notice that the ones by the dog beds also suddenly seem filthy I wash. I wash the other ones. I mop. I did stop before getting to the curtain and the mini blinds. I didn’t vacuum the bottom of the dog beds. (ewww dog hair!) That was more wretched than I could deal with when hello! work!

I was sweaty and probably smelled like dog myself by the time I was done. But, our room is clean. Really clean. And…guess what! The odor is long gone.

Still, either in pioneer times they were wiser by taking it all out in the yard and burning and sluicing everything down or the woodsmoke and general funk of just washing your body every so often must mean that Ma Ingall’s didn’t groan as Laura watched Jack and later Wolf settle down for the night. Or maybe she did and it just wasn’t spoken of in the books.