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Monday Musings: 11.12.2012 Edition November 12, 2012

Posted by Toy Lady in canning, Musings.

Boy, I’ll bet you’ve been wondering what’s happened to me lately, haven’t you?

Be assured that all is well here – we’re the regular amount of busy, the time change hasn’t defeated us (yet) and, at the moment, no one is sick!

It’s that darned computer.  You’ll recall that we sent it out to be fixed, and, well, it turns out that we’re going to have to not “fix” it so much as “replace” it.

That was not in the plan.

However, I’ve ordered a new machine from Woot! and it’ll be here . . . when it gets here.  So until then, it’s me and the Fossil Laptop.

Seriously, it gets miffed if I open more than two windows. . .


We’ve been enjoying a bee-u-tiful weekend here in upstate New York – sunny and 70+ degrees!

You do know what that means, though, right?

Yard work.  Raking and pruning and cutting back trumpet vines.  Cleaning out flower beds.  Pulling up those STUPID things that keep trying to take over my irises.  Giving the herb garden its fall trimming.  Although there’s still one tree that just won’t give up its leaves, we managed to fill SEVERAL bags with lawn trash.

I persuaded Peeps that after a day spent outside working, we don’t want to fuss with dinner – we want to fire up the grill and throw on a couple of steaks!

For the record, though, he didn’t need a lot of convincing.


You know, it turns out that, when you have to just rely on WORDS to do a blog post, well, the whole thing is a lot more daunting, you know?  I mean there’s such pressure to be interesting – if I’m going to present people with a screen full of nothing but text, without even a photo of a chopped onion to break it up, well, how can I expect anyone to actually read all that?

So. . . if you’re wondering where I am over the next couple of weeks, well, just know that words are hard sometimes!


I’ve been wanting to mention Jar’s new dog class and how well it’s been going!

You’ll recall that our star student completed the “Basic” class three times before he was promoted to the “Advanced” class.

Keeping in mind, of course, that it’s not about the skills – he can do the work – how hard can Sit, Down, Stay, and Come all be – the third time around?  No, our boy is just uncomfortable – the point of being jerky – in a room full of strange dogs.  He hates ’em.  In a way, I can’t blame him too much – I’m not a fan of strangers either.

However, we’ve just completed Week 5 (of the 6-week class) and he’s been doing so well that we’re going to . . . turn around and take the class again!


I think I mentioned last week that the Bean Guy is back at the Public Market – yay!

Next weekend, I’ll be buying more beans, and I really want to do something fantastic with fresh, dried beans. (Yes, fresh AND dried.)  So I’m trying to decide between chili or baked beans.

Rough choice, huh?  Well, which would you do?

Oh, and we did our Bean Experiment last weekend – I pressure canned three pounds of mixed dried beans – a pound each of kidney, small red, and pinto beans, all mixed together.

It worked!  Do you know what this means?  It means I’ll never buy canned beans again!



And once again, it’s time for the weekly menu plan.  We’ve got a moderately busy week ahead – and weather-wise, we’ve got a great first couple of days, followed by, well, November.

Monday –  Peeps has been wanting to make his Cincinnati chili for a while now – and believe it or not, an opened jar of tomato sauce that needs to be used before it spoils provided all the excuse we needed!

Tuesday – It’s getting back into soup season, and, since we’ve not been eating as much seafood as maybe we should be, we decided to put the two together and make that fantastic fish chowder that we liked so much.  This is why we stock up on wild Alaskan whitefish when it’s on sale!

Wednesday -A few weeks ago, I made Rick Bayless’s green enchiladas – and they were very good.  Which is darned lucky because I doubled the sauce and ended up with a TON of it in the freezer.  Well, this week, I’m going to make green PORK enchiladas using some of Peeps’s unsauced pulled pork from this summer.  Yum – smoky pork enchiladas. . .

Thursday –  You know, I’ve still got tons of kale in the garden.  I’m not too worried about it, though, because it’ll keep well even into the colder months.  But it’s not doing me any good at all if I don’t use it, right?  So I found this recipe for Rustic Squash and Kale Tart – besides the kale, I’ve been picking up random squashes at the market too.  And really, who doesn’t want pie for dinner?

Friday – Speaking of pie for dinner – Friday is always pizza night! Last week’s pile of herbs on my pizza was a nice reminder of why I love my herb garden!  This week, I’m hoping to have some leftover steak, because I do love a cheesesteak pizza!

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




1. Yolande - November 12, 2012

Your words are wonderful…don’t dispair on the fossil, it still comes in handy for photo storage(in my case that is just about it)…all good and well that jar is ready to repeat, but status of the leash? Why do you dislike canned beans so?
As for the Kale? Spicy sausage (I have used everything from Hot Italian Turkey sausage to linguisa) Potatoes, Garbanzo Beans and lots and lots of Kale with a chix stock for a hearty soup. One of my fave fall soups and freezes well…though pie for dinner sounds yummy.

Yolande - November 12, 2012

oops, onion too in the soup

Toy Lady - November 12, 2012

Of course – garlic too! 😀

Toy Lady - November 12, 2012

We’re kind of dropping the leash in class – occasionally. He’s doing fine; I know it’s almost as much about my stress level as his (I’d hate to see him try to eat one of those little cutie-puppies)!

Your soup sounds very much like one of my favorites – only I use cannelini beans and either linguisa or chorizo – LOVE it! I actually experimented with canning it successfully. 😀

And mostly the thing with the canned beans is that it’s something I can do myself for a FRACTION of the price, and better quality besides. 😉

2. judy norton - November 13, 2012

I for one enjoy your words as you are very expressive but I do miss pictures too. Jar at least gets some of the training which from what I see with people and their dogs in my neighborhood never made a single class.

The fall headed to winter food looks so good! Sorry about the computer and I hope you love what you get for new and all the stuff you go through to get it set up. We will be patient. Have a good week.

Toy Lady - November 13, 2012

Thanks, Judy. 🙂

You know, Jar is SUCH a big oaf that he’s GOT to be twice as well-behaved as other, lesser dogs, because otherwise, he’s downright scary!

I’ve ordered a new laptop – hopefully it’ll work the way I WANT it to. . . it should be here soon. 😀

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