Saturday, December 6, 2008

Domestic Bliss

No snow... It'll come soon, but not quite ready yet.

They say that hunger makes a good spice for food. I think that was in reference to a starving man's first meal after a long time of privation, so I don't see how it applies to us out here in the wilderness. But, it does seem that meals cooked out here taste better. I made pancakes for breakfast yesterday. They were sOOO good. Even through the headache I had most of the day they tasted yummy. For dinner last night I opened a can of treet, (I brought a spam cookbook, need to find it, it'll work for treet too) sliced it up, and fried it on the griddle. Add some velveeta, and eat it as sandwiches with mayo and stone ground mustard and it was fit for a king. Now mind you, we are VERY far from starving. :D We have plenty of food, and we eat when we are hungry. But, everything tastes better it seems since we moved out here. cleaner is one way to describe it I guess.

Yesterday I got up with a horrible headache and it persisted through most of the day. It was accompanied by some nausea and general grumpiness. (I think I used some new swear words at the pancakes at breakfast... ) We have come to the conclusion that our propane fireplace is using up too much oxygen. It's not carbon monoxide poisoning that you can get with these appliances. There is no symptoms of that and the dogs aren't sick. Thor sleeps on the floor all the time and he would be the first one affected if it were carbon monoxide, and he has no effects from that. So, yesterday we cracked a window about an inch, and last night we left it open too. So far this morning, I am feeling no headache and am doing better than I was yesterday morning. Other than a bit stiff in the joints and such from having to sleep in a contorted position (as usual!) so the dogs can have their portion of the bed I am good to go! Problem solved (I hope!). We came to the conclusion that it was using too much oxygen when we tried to light a lighter and it wouldn't work unless we opened a window for a few minutes before it lit. This tells me that one of the components for fire was missing. Since we had a flammable fuel, and an ignitor the only thing missing would be oxygen. So tada! Problem of the headache solved.

Today, we are going to do one of a few things. :) Yesterday we were going to put together the turkey fryer my beloved Mother in Law bought for us so I can do some dishes and wash my hair. This plan of action however was pre-empted by my headache and ill tummy. So we may do that today. The other option is to drive into the library so I can update the blog and return some library books that are due today. If we don't return them today, then I'll have to do it Monday and pay the fine for being late. Which I really don't want to have to do. I guess it comes down to weighing how much the fine is vs. how much gas we will expend going today. The other factor that will decide if we go to town or not is how badly hubby wants to download new podcasts. lol. He's such a podcast freak. He listens to them while doing other work. I can't really blame him though, it's a great way to get caught up on the world at large. Of course, there is always the option of going nowhere, and doing nothing. In which case, I'll work on some crochet, and hubby will probably play a computer game or take his chainsaw out and see if he can actually cut down some trees. He was going to do that yesterday, but I woke up with a headache... I wonder if that is what gave me the headache?

Not sure what I am going to make for breakfast today. French toast was for breakfast on Thursday, and pancakes yesterday. Maybe some kind of egg something. Fried egg sandwiches? scrambled eggs and cheese? Egg in a Nest? Boiled eggs? Hummm... Will have to wait for hubby to wake up and see if he has any input on this egg thing. Maybe he'll want something entirely different. I'll have to figure out how to do omelets I guess on this propane stove, that would be a nice change of pace.

Rice. Now there is something else I have to figure out how to do on a propane camp stove. Back in Eugene we had a rice cooker. It was nice, pour in the water, add the rice, close the lid, hit the button and walk away. Here though, you can't do that. If I were to pour in the water, add the rice and walk away I would have a real mess on my hands. LOL. Something akin to a charcoal briquet with glue on top. Boil the water, add the rice and set to the side for an hour? Maybe that would work, although it would also be cold when we went to eat it, meaning that it would have to be smothered in gravy or other goopy sauce (not my favorite way to eat) in order to heat it back up. No microwaves in the wilderness. hummm.. Boil the water, add the rice then set it on top of the propane heater while the rice cooks. Maybe that would work better. The propane heater has a flat top and I keep the tea kettle there. It never really boils the water, but it keeps it hot enough for hot chocolate or tea. If it keeps the kettle that warm maybe it'll work well for making the rice up.... I'll have to give it a shot and see what I come up with. It would be nice to have some rice and something as a change for supper. I've made mac & cheese a few times and it is pretty good, and we gorge on it when I make it. Here's the recipe, sorry there isn't any real measurements, it's not how I cook. :D

boiling water
8 hands full of macaroni noodles

boil the noodles over a low to medium low propane heat until they are just tender, then drain.

one large fist size lump of velveeta, cubed
1/4 "ish" cup of milk (can use a small handfull of powdered milk and a sploosh of water or canned milk)

Add to your hot pot the velveeta CUBED up in about 1/2 inch to 1 inch cubes, add your milk, and dump the noodles back in, stir like your life depends on it. You don't want to scorch it. Add a little salt and pepper and your done. I like to add a drained can of chicken to this for some added goodness. If hubby won't be partaking of it then I'll use a can of drained tuna instead. Makes for a more balanced meal. If I still had a freezer, I would keep a bag or two of frozen broccoli in there, and I would have added some broccoli to the noodles while they were boiling so I could have some veggies in there. A can of canned peas can make a world of difference in this meal, just open, drain them off and add them at the last minute. Can sprinkle with some bread crumbs or parmesan for extra "oomph" to the meal too.

I am working on a scarf as a Christmas/Yule gift for someone. I'll write out the pattern and include it in the blog in the next day or so as well, it's an easy pattern that is very pretty and I am more than a little satisfied with it. I am going to do a shawl for myself with this pattern I think. I got some new Red Heart yarn in a color scheme called ZEBRA and it's kind of pretty in a monochromatic way. :D Look for the yarn online.

Off to find some kind of trouble... I'm good at that.

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