Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Be nice to Mother Nature

A week ago, my part of New England  (that would be the part north of Boston, but south of New Hampshire) had its first measurable snow for this season.  And it was a delight!!

We're so close to the ocean that most of our snowstorms of wet and heavy, but this one was light, dry, and fluffy!  I'm not one for making snowmen or even snowballs, but I would have been disappointed if I was, because it would have been impossible to pack this snow.  We had perhaps 5 inches, which can be a lot, but cleanup was amazingly easy, because of the type of snow it was.

Typically, we do a team cleanup effort, with one of us using the snowblower, and the other using a shovel.  And while I was shoveling, I thought to myself - 'Wow, I would take snowstorms every week, all winter long, if they were all like this.'  I then promptly gave myself a mental kick in the pants, worried that I might have given Mother Nature ideas.

This past weekend, the country experienced another snowstorm.. and this was truly a major storm. Airports up and down the east coast were shut down, airports all over the country were impacted.  And up here, north of Boston and south of New Hampshire, we had about an inch. Yes, it began much earlier than the forecast said. Yes, it was wet and sloppy and slippery.  Yes, it then got very cold, so everything that hadn't been cleaned up, froze.  But still.. it was only an inch.  It was one of those snows that is so wet, but so small in quantity, that it was actually easier to clean it up with a shovel than with the snowblower.  If not for the forecast for freezing termperatures, it would have been really tempting to just ignore it.  But even an inch, when frozen, can be a big problem.  So we didn't skimp on the cleanup.

My conclusion from these events?  Apparently, I did not annoy Mother Nature overly much, with my comment about weekly snowstorms, so she let me off easy this second time around.  Next, she's made it abundantly clear that there is much more to snow than just the number of inches -- ie, size does not matter. And finally, as I look at the pictures online - not everyone thinks the snow is a bad thing, and sometimes you should just go with the flow.

Bottom line here -- be nice to Mother Nature,.

And when you come in from the cold, you should have a nice cup of tea.
Nope, nothing on the internet about that, that's just one of Laurie's rules.

Monday, January 25, 2016

A Recipe Storage Place

This morning, before I left for work, I threw together one of our favorite crockpot recipes --  Herbed Artichoke Chicken.  I'd nearly forgotten about this one, but hubby brought it up a couple days ago. "Remember that Mediterranean type of thing you did in the crockpot, with olives?" he asked.  "Maybe we could have that again."
My first thought was -- wow... he must have really liked it.  My next thought was -- oh yeah, where did I put that recipe, and what was it called?
After much thinking, and a bit of hunting, I found the recipe...  Herbed Artichoke Chicken.  Along the way, I came across several other recipes that I'd forgotten about.  And I came up with a plan.

If you follow my blog, you know that I like recipes.  Not just following them and making a dish, but actually reading and collecting recipes.  The problem with that is that I have a gazillion recipes.. perhaps even more.    Organizing them is difficult, because some are in books, some are in magazines, some have been cut out, some are photocopies, some are handwritten... you get the idea.  I don't claim to have made most of the recipes... to be honest, I'm sure it's a pretty tiny percentage.  But that's not because I don't cook or try new creations, it's because I have so many recipes. I've looked at some of these apps where you can save your recipes, but it seems like an awful lot of work.  But so was going through books and photocopies and magazines, just to find Herbed Artichoke Chicken.

And while I was looking, I thought of an email I received from a friend last week.  This isn't a virtual, online friend....I've actually met her and been in the room with her.  But she's not a close friend.  Due to distance, I only see her once, maybe twice, a year.  I had no idea she even read my blog.  And her email had nothing to do with my blog, or cooking.  But kind of as a P.S., she said  -- by the way, we tried the granola cookies you mentioned, and they were wonderful.

And -- as I said, I came up with a plan.  I don't always cook with a recipe... most often it's a simple meal that I've just thrown together.  But when I do use a recipe, AND we like the outcome, my plan is to post it here.  It won't be a Teapot Musing... but I've set up a separate page that's part of Teapot Musings, where I'll put the recipes.  I won't bother posting links on Google+, or on Facebook, or anywhere else, it will just be my own personal recipe storage place.  An easy way for me to keep my favorites.  And I'm willing to let you see.  At the moment, if you look on the right side, you'll see


 (see how creative I am!)  and then - if I've done it right,  you'll see recipes added to the list.

Will I truly follow through?  I'd like to think so.  But even if I don't, at least I'll know where I can always find the recipe for Herbed Artichoke Chicken.

And in case you wondered, yes, it does go well with tea.