Monday, January 30, 2006

Delight Yourself in the Lord...

You will never have enough money to satisfy all you desires. - Helpful Hints for Hard Times Posted by Picasa

Friday, January 20, 2006

"Living simply" is an option only for the rich. - Marva Dawn, Talking the Walk

How often do we whine for more money in our budget categories or wish for nicer things? We are spoiled children indeed. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Comments Made in the Year 1955

The following was sent to me via email from my beloved husband.

"I'll tell you one thing, if things keep going the way they are, it's going to be impossible to buy a week's groceries for $20."

"Have you seen the new cars coming out next year? It won't be long before $2000 will only buy a used one."

"If cigarettes keep going up in price, I'm going to quit. A quarter a pack is ridiculous."

"Did you hear the post office is thinking about charging a dime just to mail a letter?"

"If they raise the minimum wage to $1, nobody will be able to hire outside help at the store."

"When I first started driving, who would have thought gas would someday cost 29 cents a gallon. Guess we'd be better off leaving the car in the garage."

"Kids today are impossible. Those duck tail hair cuts make it impossible to stay groomed. Next thing you know, boys will be wearing their hair as long as the girls."

"I'm afraid to send my kids to the movies any more. Ever since they let Clark Gable get by with saying 'damn' in 'Gone With The Wind,' it seems every new movie has either "hell" or "damn" in it.

"I read the other day where some scientist thinks it's possible to put a man on the moon by the end of the century They even have some fellows they call astronauts preparing for it down in Texas."

"Did you see where some baseball player just signed a contract for $75,000 a year just to play ball? It wouldn't surprise me if someday they'll be making more than the president."

"I never thought I'd see the day all our kitchen appliances would be electric. They are even making electric typewriters now."

"It's too bad things are so tough nowadays. I see where a few married women are having to work to make ends meet."

"It won't be long before young couples are going to have to hire someone to watch their kids so they can both work."

"Marriage doesn't mean a thing any more; those Hollywood stars seem to be getting divorced at the drop of a hat."

"I'm just afraid the Volkswagen car is going to open the door to a whole lot of foreign business."

"Thank goodness I won't live to see the day when the Government takes half our income in taxes. I sometimes wonder if we are electing the best people to congress."

"The drive-in restaurant is convenient in nice weather, but I seriously doubt they will ever catch on."

"There is no sense going to Lincoln or Omaha anymore for a weekend. It costs nearly $15 a night to stay in a hotel."

"No one can afford to be sick any more; $35 a day in the hospital is too rich for my blood."

"If they think I'll pay 50 cents for a hair cut, forget it."

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Martha Stewart's Guide to Picking Produce

How to Recognize the Best-Tasting Produce


Apples Taut skin, very firm when gently pressed. Avoid those with soft spots or punctures. Flavor and texture vary widely among varieties. Seek them out at local farm stands or farmers’ markets in the fall.

Avocados Look for Hass, with bumpy, dark-green to almost black skin. When ripe, they will give to gentle pressure (pressing too hard will bruise the flesh). If you buy a firm one, store it at room temperature to ripen.

Bananas For flesh that’s neither too firm nor too soft, pick those that are yellow all over, with no green, browning, or spots whatsoever, from stem to end. Store at room temperature to ripen further.

Berries Sneak a taste (Martha! Shame on you!); watch out for mold and mush. Strawberries: fragrant, shiny, firm, not too big, green stems. Blueberries: firm, no green or red areas. Raspberries: full, just soft, but not oozing juice.

Grapefruit and Oranges Heavy for their size. Navel oranges: Avoid severe bruises and soft spots. Juice oranges and grapefruit: taut, shiny skin. Through skin, you should be able to feel the sections inside.

Lemons and Limes Not much more than 3 inches from tip to stem; heavy for their size. Taut, thin skin; avoid those with very hard skin. Through skin, you should be able to feel the flesh inside. Should give slightly when pressed.

Melons Look for those that are fragrant and heavy. Press end opposite stem to feel for a bit of give. Watermelon: Avoid those with flat sides. Presliced, it should be deep red with about 1 inch of white rind.

Pears Fragrant, with no soft spots, punctures, or bruises. To eat right away, they should give easily if pressed gently. For coming days, pick those with less give; ripen at room temperature. (Buy Bosc very firm.)

Stone Fruits Fragrant, with taut skin. Avoid those with wrinkles and bruises. They should have some give when gently pressed; handle carefully, no more than 4 per bag. Leave firmer ones at room temperature to ripen.

Tomatoes Best in season, from farm stands and farmers’ markets. Taut skin, firm flesh, deep and even color (greenish coloring at stem end on heirlooms is okay). Avoid pale ones. Store at room temperature.


Asparagus Thickness is a matter of taste. Choose bunches with tightly closed tips without flowering. Stalks should be bright green and firm. Avoid those with stalks that are flattened or wrinkled and feel hollow.

Beans Pole: bright, firm, with no soft spots or wrinkles. Should snap when bent, with very small beans. Avoid tough skin. Shell: pods a bit leathery but firm; no yellowing. Beans should be easily felt through the pod.

Corn Best served the day you buy it; don’t refrigerate. Bright-green husks wrapped tightly around ear, with flowing, moist silk (not brown). Pull back husk; kernels should be small, shiny, firm, and tightly packed.

Cucumbers Look for firm, unwaxed Kirbys (which are nearly seedless) with variegated color from light to dark green, and without wrinkles or soft spots; best no more than 6 inches long. If Kirbys are unavailable, buy English.

Eggplant Flesh should give a bit when gently pressed, with no hard spots. Skin should be shiny, not shriveled, wrinkled, or mottled. Stems should be green. Use within a day or two. Don’t refrigerate.

Mesclun and Lettuces Mesclun: Dig down into bin for freshest greens. There should be no wilted leaves, or wet, mushy, or yellow spots. Romaine: dark green, narrow, stiff leaves. Butter lettuces: small, round, loosely formed heads.

Onions Look for dry, papery skins and flesh that is full and firm, especially at the stem end. Avoid any with mold, discoloration, or soft spots, or ones in net bags; select one by one. Store at room temperature.

Peppers Bell: very firm all over with taut skin. Flesh should be thick without soft spots or wrinkles. Look for bright-green stems. Chiles: Any color you choose should be vibrant and wrinkle-free.

Potatoes Firm, without any soft areas or wrinkled skin; avoid those with sprouting eyes, slits, or a green tinge. Avoid bags; choose individually. Buy all one size to cook evenly. Store at room temperature.

Summer Squash Yellow and green: Choose small to medium, 5 to 6 inches and not bulbous (large ones are watery or fibrous); should feel firm. Skin should be smooth, shiny. Patty pan: no bigger than 4 inches across.

Seasonal Shopping

If you have cash on hand (please don't use the credit cards) seasonal shopping can save you money if you are able to plan ahead. Here is a list of what is typically on sale each month.

Small appliances
Holiday decorations

Floor Coverings

Storm windows
Air conditioners
Corned beef (Just before
St Patrick's Day)
Frozen foods

Women's and girl's dresses and finery (after Easter)
Kitchen stove

Towels, linens

Floor Coverings

Hotdogs, ground beef
Craft supplies
Paper goods

Fresh vegetables
Towels, linens
Bathing suits
Summer footwear
Pens, pencils, paper
Kid's clothing
Patio and lawn furniture
Air conditioners

Root vegetables
Paper, pencils, pens
Garden tools

Fishing gear

Autumn decorations
Quilts and blankets
Space heaters

Seasonal decorations (after the

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

 Posted by Picasa

Frugality without creativity is deprivation.
Amy Dacyczyn
 Posted by Picasa

The Common Room: Home Ec, Laundry 101

The Common Room: Home Ec, Laundry 101

Wonderful laundry link! Hat tip to Mrs. Happy Housewife. ;)

Monday, January 09, 2006

Do you ever wonder what life would be like if no one had TV? Would cities and towns look more distinctive in architecture and style rather than the cookie-cutter fashions we see today? Would we have as many clothes or gadgets & toys? Would women feel the need to bring a second income into the family? Would we actually meet our neighbors because we weren't "friends" with TV characters? Would we be smarter or more well-read? Would we support the arts more? Would we be more sympathetic towards those in need that we see because we hadn't been desensitized by the media? Would we be happier with what we have - our families, our bodies, our income...? Just some thoughts. :) Posted by Picasa