While pulling weeds this past week, this little cutie was all by itself - I didn't plant it, don't know where it came from, but it was a very nice surprise. : )
Well..........here we are..........Memorial Day weekend. It came SO very quickly even though we may feel that time is standing still. As I type, we are receiving a delicious rain - soaking the grass and new plantings and it gives a calm and solemnity. The birds are singing through it all - maybe a reminder to us - that through it all we just keep singing. Maybe it's a reminder that we are being taken care of even though the clouds hang over our heads. To just keep on keeping on and do what we are supposed to do.
I do hope that if you live close to a cemetery (especially one that has veterans in it) that you will take the time to spend a little money and get a flower or two to put on the graves. We went to Ft. Snelling yesterday to put a flag and a rose on my Uncle Pete's grave - a man who earned a Purple Heart in World War 2. And then we find a grave that you just know no one will visit. Since I'm from South Dakota, we found a grave of a young man (died when he was 21) from SD and we put a flag and a rose on his grave as well. Twenty one years old. What a sacrifice he made for you and me. Never had the chance to go to college. Never had the chance to find the wife of his dreams. Never knew what it would feel like to be called "daddy". Never had the chance to pursue a career, own a home of his own.........................the LEAST we can do for these heroes is to put a flower on their grave and say a whispered "thank you". And, if you see a veteran this weekend (or at any time!) PLEASE say "thank you" to them as well.
Well, since my allergies are really acting up with all the new growth out there, my time outdoors was pretty limited this week. Last weekend we had another wonderful rain (3 inches!) so it did wash a lot of pollen away and I took advantage of that in the pulling of some weeds. I'm hoping this rain will do the same. I'm looking out the window right now and our Azalea bush just glows in all the cloudiness. Such a beautiful Spring we've been having - everything quite luscious. I did get another row of carrots planted wanting to continue with our succession planting so that we have different things coming up throughout the Summer into Fall (which I don't even want to talk about yet!). : )
So......my work turned indoors this week. One of my very favorite things to do around the house is "tidy up". Tidying up is different than cleaning. If I see a drawer that has seen better days, I love to stop what I'm doing, turn on some soft music, and just take my time in tidying up that space until it's done and looking good again. Same with the kitchen space - while drying and putting dishes away - if I see a drawer or cupboard that is a little out of control, I love to stop at that point and make it right. I find that if I don't do it when I see it, it will always be a source of aggravation to me until it's done. But there is just something in the process of doing that is calming to me - a chance to just settle down for a while and do something productive and see the after affects that is very pleasant.
And then I did some major cleaning in our laundry area (which also serves as a storage space with lots of shelves). This area is my least favorite in all our house and it's not that I'm not grateful that we even have this space, but if there is one word for it, it's ugly. There is absolutely NO way to make this area nice and pretty because it's old. Sure, we could have someone come in and redo it, but that would take a lot of money and so we choose to at least keep it clean and tidy instead! I've learned over the years that we have to choose as to what we are okay to spend money on and this area just hasn't seemed to be on our priority list. I just envy (using this word lightly) women who have these bright and beautiful laundry areas - everything clean and pristine - all painted in white with the cute little signs up and lots of space. Well, that ain't going to happen here!!!!!! LOL : )
A while back, while cleaning out our pantry to reorganize and gain space, I came across a whole LOT of dried fruit that I was going to use this past Christmas to make fruitcake with. I saw a recipe at that time that sounded different than the traditional fruitcake (of which I do not enjoy) but I never did get around to it. So.......I made it this week. I'm not going to share the recipe with you (maybe this Christmas) but I have to say it is a very time-consuming recipe. For any of you who make fruitcake, just the cutting up of all those dried fruits (and nuts) takes FOREVER!!!! After THAT part is done, the rest is easy-peasy, but my goodness.........fortunately when all was done and baked and cooled and sliced and tasted........it was VERY good. VERY sweet and rich, but VERY good. : )
We each had a slice (and even that was almost too much) and the rest went into the freezer for a treat now and then - this recipe made two loaves so we'll have plenty! : ) Fruitcake in May - why not?
Since the weather was beautiful and warmish this past week, I wanted to fire up the grill for kabobs. One of my favorite meals is kabobs served with rice on the side (or in our case, it was quinoa). I know that people either love Spam or hate it - we happen to like it. And I'm buying quite a bit for our pantry since it keeps forever. Of course, it's a food item that you don't want to have as a regular meal every week because it isn't exactly what one would call a "health food" - but once every so often is okay with us. So I opened a can of Spam. We already had fresh pineapple, a red bell pepper, and a red onion and I cubed everything up, thread it all on skewers, made a Teriyaki marinade, and threw them on the grill, brushing with the marinade every time we turned them (which only took about 10 minutes in all). Brought them in, slid them off the skewers onto our plates and served them with our quinoa and had a salad off to the side. We really enjoyed them - very tasty.
Ready for the grill.
Ready to eat. : )
I found that I couldn't use up all the Spam, veggies, and quinoa, so I refrigerated it all to make this the next day:
Quinoa fried rice. I shared this recipe in a past post. It's really versatile - literally using up what you have on hand. It, too, is VERY tasty. A little fruit off to the side and it's a fun meal that only takes minutes to throw together. Don't you just love that? : )
Now.......for this day. I ALWAYS have lists of things to do/make/get done so I'm hoping that I will!! In between rains I'm hoping to go out and keep at the weeds. But if it keeps raining steadily my indoor projects include:
*go through boxes underneath our basement steps and see what I can purge and reorganize
*I never did make any facemasks, so I want to get to that - we have purchased some throw-aways, but I would like some fabric ones as well
*I have old sheets that I need to make rags with
*I have a cross stitch project that I need to plug away on
*I need to make more greeting cards
*I'm knitting a scarf that I like to work on if I need something soothing to do
*I'm continuing to crochet quilt blocks for a blanket
*I want to make more aprons
*I found a tutorial on how to make cotton slips and want to make one for summer
*I bought a few summer tops that I would like to try and embellish since they are plain
*I bought fabric during the winter for a skirt and blouse that I haven't even begun to cut out let alone sew!!! I'm not a seamstress so that is part of my hesitancy. But I need to try.
*I have garlic that I need to preserve so that I can buy more next week! We love garlic - and the garlic we're growing is doing very well, but of course it's not ready yet.
*I still have items on my "to cook/bake" list in the kitchen that I need to get around to
As you can see, I have more than I could ever accomplish today (or this whole weekend!), but it's a list and what I like about lists is that it's always a reminder. None of these things NEED to be absolutely accomplished at any certain date but, for me, it's fun to pick and choose depending on what kind of mood I'm in, what the weather is like, what would give pleasure at this time...........
I think that is pretty much it for today! Thank you SO much for stopping by for a visit - I sometimes wish it was a REAL visit from you. Sit with a cup of coffee or tea and just chat. But I'm VERY appreciative of you taking the time in your day to read what little I have to offer. : ) Have a good day ahead - please stay safe and healthy throughout this coming weekend. God bless you, your friends, your family, and your homemaking efforts!!!!!!!! : )