Tuesday, November 6, 2007

So I already posted my recipe for laundry soap, but recently I have also converted to a baking soda based dishwasher detergent too. Basically I use equal parts borax and baking soda the same way you would use powdered detergent and it has worked great. A much cheaper (and more environmentally friendly) way to get clean dishes without too much work. You may think I should write a book called 1001 uses for baking soda and I would, but that book has already been written. I checked it out from the library when I decided to start buying baking soda at Costco.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Apples to Apples

I have had this blog post all planned out for awhile, but things went awry to say the least. Dan discovered an apple tree at the cemetery in Volunteer park near our house. Sadly the apples were just falling off and rotting on the ground (perhaps to remind us of our mortality?) and it looked like no one was interested. So we did a family bike ride to load up on some apples with the intention of making some apple pie filling. I should note here that the reason we were going to do apple pie filling is because we still have many quarts of applesauce from a similar discovery about 4 years ago in Alameda. Anyway, we got the apples, brought them home and began peeling, coring and slicing them - a very messy project. When we got about 1/3 of the way through we discovered we didn't have any available quart jars so we would have to put the project on hold. Instead I made a giant apple crisp and we left the rest of the very ripe apples on the counter. The next day we were overtaken with fruit flies. Despite this fact it still took us another three days to get the jars and get the project moving again. Once the apples were cut and filling made we filled and processed the jars. This is when we learned the importance of head space in canning. We've never really worried about it before, but this time all the apples swelled and burst out the top making a big mess and leaving the jars unsealed. We dug out more space and reprocessed the jars unfortunately a jar broke in the pot of boiling water making another giant mess. (and safety hazard - boiling water with floating glass shards, good thing no social workers were coming by.) Once we actually got the jars processed we realized we had removed too much filling and now the jars were really only half full. To sum up we got 5 half filled quart jars of apple pie filling and it only cost us a huge hassle, a house of fruit flies and two broken jars. What a bargain.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Yesterday I was out walking around Greenlake enjoying one of the last few nice, dry fall days here in Seattle when I found this super cute eggplant hat. Kids dressed as eggplants have an oddly special place in my heart so I picked it up. I wondered about the morality of picking this hat up since its possible a parent would come back to look for it. However in the last two days I have donated two pacifiers to the free kids stuff cycle (or rather my feisty little baby donated them by throwing them out of her stroller) so I decided it might just be good karma. Hannah looks super cute in it, but she refused to pose for a pic, sorry.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Back Blogging

Hi All. I actually had a time-sensitive post that required me to get back into the blogging game. Safeway is having a really good sale on sugar this week. Now I don't want to turn into a grocery blogger (how suburban housewife can you get !?) but grocery shopping is the only shopping I have done of late, so its all I've got. Its $2 for a 5lb bag, which works out to $.40 a pound, which is better than Costco and better than most sales. You may want to stock up. You may also want to check your pantry and make sure you have not already stocked up before you go. Trust me, it is hard to find places to store 30 pounds of sugar in a 2-bedroom apartment.