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Monday Musings: 09.17.2012 Edition September 17, 2012

Posted by Toy Lady in canning, meal plan monday, random stuff.


We’ve had a busy busy weekend!

First off, I started chicken stock Saturday – I absolutely HAD to get some of the chicken, um, stuff out of the freezer – it was taking over!  We decided to can it this time around in pints rather than quarts – mainly because I had 3 empty quart jars and 2 and a half cases of pints!

I had also intended to make my lovely, lovely kale and bean soup and try canning that, and would you believe, there is apparently not a wide-mouth pint jar to be had in Rochester!

I gave up in disgust, came home and tried canning just the beans (fingers crossed!) and ended up ordering some jars online.  Maybe next week we’ll try again . . .



Although the garden seems to have pretty much pooped out on me, I’m still picking a bowlful of those little Juliet tomatoes every few days.

I’m of two minds about these tomatoes – they’re too small to want to peel and can, but they really don’t have a nice, vibrant flavor like a cherry tomato.

However, I’ve found that if I halve the little buggers, toss them with some garlic, shallots and olive oil, with a bit of salt, then roast them, the blend into a sauce that’s not  bad at all.  In fact, I’d say it’s pretty darned good – especially on pizza!


I decided that it might be a good idea to take a sock-knitting class.  I’ve got the basic hang of it, but I just can’t get my heels to look nice.  And I can’t seem to work an actual class into my schedule – either they’re in the afternoons when I’m at work, or they’re in the evenings and run past my bedtime.  Then I came across the idea of an online class – something I can access whenever I want to.

I’ll let you know how it works out!



Poor old Jar!

He had his obedience class Saturday, and this is pretty much how he spent the rest of the day.  Why yes, I do need to vacuum those stairs!

Even though he knows most of the material we’re covering in class (sit, down, stay, heel), it’s still awfully hard for him to be the same room with 6 or 7 strange dogs.

But he’s doing very well – I think the combination of his medication, and better consistency and handling techniques on my part is actually helping!

Of course, the sheer volume of treats he’s getting is staggering!



Lest anyone think the dog is the only one getting treats, though, I assure you, that is not the case!

Whenever I make chicken stock, I always make sure to pick out a few tasty morsels for our kitty!

I find the best time to lure her out into the Real World is about half an hour before her dinnertime – then she’s STARVING and doesn’t care if there are  dogs around or not!



And once again, it’s time for the weekly menu plan.  We’re still trying to hang onto as much summer as we can, though the cooler weather is certainly welcome.


Monday –  We are STILL trying to get stuff out of the freezer – we’re so used to shopping and cooking for 3 plus leftovers, that it’s really hard to just cook for two!  We’re finishing up some tilapia – since it’s looking to be such a stellar day, Peeps will grill it, and we’ll serve with some polenta and a nice tossed salad.

Tuesday – I did pick up some chicken on sale (though none went into the freezer!), and we’re going to do one of our all-time favorites – pan roasted breasts with rosemary.  I think it’ll be quite nice with some barley (we NEVER have barley, and we both love it!)  and I’m going to roast some butternut squash that my mother gave me from her garden.

Wednesday – We had planned to test our freshly-canned kale soup, but since we were unable to find the proper jars, we’re probably going to wing it.  Maybe we’ll try some sort of bean burgers or something.  Ideally it’ll be something mostly meatless.

Thursday – We realized that we hadn’t had those fancy French pork chops in a while, and it’s still grilling weather!  Since I have neither fennel pollen nor fronds on hand, I may try making the rub with salt, pepper, and just a little bit of ground fennel seeds.  Could work.  Peeps has taken a real liking to foil packets of baby potatoes on the grill (not to mention homefries made with any leftover potatoes!), so we’re going to do that, along with what’s sure to be leftover squash from Tuesday’s chicken.

Friday – See, now I’m torn pizza night – I adore my fresh tomato-herb pizza.  But I’m also not hating the roasted tomato sauce.  And a gal can only eat just so much pizza. . . it’s rough, let me tell you!

Be sure to click on over to The Organizing Junkie’s Monday Menu Plan post for loads and loads of other ideas.





1. sjbraun - September 17, 2012

I always love seeing your pet pix 🙂 Good for you for taking a sock class – never even knew such a thing existed! I look forward to seeing perfect heels here in no time 🙂
Thanks for your tomato sauce tips. The tomatoes are just from plants I got at Meijer — big boy?? better boy?? I’ll have to add some romas in the next batch. I considered making the chunkier sauce, but my kids seem to be “allergic” to pieces of tomato, hence the food mill. I’ll try adding some tomato paste 🙂

Toy Lady - September 17, 2012

I think that site – Craftsy – is fairly new. At least I only recently stumbled upon it. We shall see. . .

And re: the tomato sauce – we use the stick blender, and there are NO chunks left – even with the skins! Peeps is less than a fan of chunky, too, so. . .

2. judy norton - September 18, 2012

Never a wasted moment with you. I had to laugh at Jar being exhausted just being good! And of course Kitty always warms my heart stinker tho she is. Your menu sounds really good for the week and I hope you get all the grilling in. Do you think more people were canning this year or the stores just were not prepared with not enough jars.

Have a good week both of you.

Toy Lady - September 18, 2012

Well, you know, Judy, being such a good puppy IS a lot of work! 😆

The Kitty always comes out of the woodwork when we’re canning stock – she’s no dummy1 She knows there’s good stuff to be had!

I suspect that, since it’s nearly the end of September, the stores just haven’t restocked the canning jars. I’ve run into this before – there are jars galore in the summer, but come fall, I’m kind of out of luck. Fortunately, I’ve got the internet and free shipping now! 😉

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