Tuesday, September 23, 2008
We lucked out and had a buy on the worst, rainiest most horrid weather day the weekend of the 13th...the memorable weekend when hurricane Ike came up here to the north and dumped on us big buckets of rain.
Each game day so far has been sunny and gorgeous. What could be better for fall? We get to sit in the stands with some great families and especially some of the very best of grandmas that have the most fun of all of us. They have their little clappers-- noisemakers--to let their grandsons that they're there, and they're all for the HORNETS! Soon, those grandmas will have some cowbells....now I'll have to let you know how that goes!
Monday, September 15, 2008
Sunday, September 14, 2008
Saturday, September 13, 2008
If you want more zip, leave the ribs and the seeds or half the seeds in the hot peppers, if you want mild, remove them all. If you want to spice a mild salsa up once it's canned, just get out the hot pepper flakes and sprinkle them over your bowl of salsa!
Also, one more thing to make your job easier: a Vidalia chopper (found at Bed, Bath & Beyond) with the wider cut chopping insert makes this job a whole lot easier! The onions and peppers come out in perfect squares and your salsa looks like a pro made it, but either way, it's gonna be good!
HOMEMADE CANNED SALSA
First, core, scald, peel and quarter and/or chop your tomatoes. Get the jars and rings ready and all your other canning stuff, like your big pots, the funnel, lid lifter, etc.
10 c. chopped tomatoes
3 c. chopped onions
1 c. chopped green peppers
3 cloves garlic, minced (I used the jar of minced garlic)
1/2 c. chopped cilantro (found this time of year near the fresh parsley in the produce department, you can of course, leave this out but I love it!)
1-1/3 c. red wine vinegar
1 can tomato paste, or more, if you want your salsa thicker
1 t. cumin (optional)
1 T. red pepper flakes
3 T. pickling salt
3 T. brown sugar
Simmer all ingredients for one hour or more, and stir in 1/3 c. cornstarch diluted in cold water if more thickening is needed.
(I don't do the cornstarch, I don't like the taste, so I just add more tomato paste.) Ladle into hot jars and seal. If you have a little leftover, or a bit more salsa than jars, it refrigerates well. ENJOY!
Friday, September 12, 2008
Friday, September 5, 2008
We grew most all the ingredients ourselves, I just had to buy the cilantro. Although I had planted my own cilantro, I wasn't aware it liked shade and so it went to seed early. I will try it again next year so that ALL my ingredients will be our own!
I'm hoping we can make another batch or two at least! I'm sure next week I will need to set aside another whole day just for the abundant tomatoes I'm seeing in the garden!
Monday, September 1, 2008
Good-bye, summer! You sure have a lot for us to miss about you! We wait so long for you to come, and now it's time for you to leave. Won't you stay just a little longer!? There is so much for you to offer us and we enjoy so much of it. But hey, if it was ALWAYS summer, then we wouldn't think all of this was so special........the classic car shows,
.... the afternoons and evenings at the baseball field, America's favorite pastime is also mine on a nice breezy summer day!
Hot summer afternoons, lazing in the cool, refreshing pool water....looking at the cloud formations, trying to find objects in the bluest of skies.....
How much excitement there is when we can finally go to Pat's Market and pick out all the flowers for the whiskey barrels, and get the plants and seeds for the vegetable garden!
Spending time by the water in Michigan is a MUST for those of us born and raised here, who spent many summer afternoons as a kid watching the water lick the shore....
The joy we feel when our contry celebrates the freedoms that so many sacrificed and died to give to us. Summer starts with Memorial day and in the middle is the splash of color that is the fourth of July. Oh, how I love that day and the night sky that booms!
Summer gives me the chance to hang out all the laundry if I want to, and I usually want to! There's nothing like the joy of sorting the laundry and hanging it carefully on the line, to be kissed by the sunshine and softened by the wind! I know, I'm weird, but I really, really love doing this! How can you match the smell of crisp, clean, fresh-smelling sheets when you pull back the covers at night after a hard day's work?
Another summer favorite is FLIP FLOPS!!! I hope to be buried in a pair because my feet are their happiest without the constraints of a shoe! You can never have too many flip flops!
And, even a good summer storm is one of the great things about summer, the beauty of a rainbow after a good downpour, and the sweet, fresh smell of the earth when it has been renewed by the vigor of the rain!
On now to the delights of a new and gorgeous fall season!
Some of the best things about the state are these:
1. They still have chain gangs and you will see crews of them working to clean up the interstate, cutting brush, doing road work, just cleaning up in general; with their "supervisors" watching over them from the bed of a truck, with their rifle very visible. Old fashioned? I think not. Their prison popluation is nothing like ours, and costs nothing like ours. How many years have we heard in Michigan that the prison system is one of the highest costs to the state??
2. Their county jail inmates work! AMAZING! They wash the county vehicles and school buses, their senior buses, handicapped transportation, etc. They also pick up the garbage...and may I ask who better to do it? And, the inmates want to get out so bad and smell the fresh air and see something other than those four block walls, so you know they're going to be on their best behavior!
3. The state has a very, very low property tax rate. Alabamaians know how to get a good return on their VERY LOW property tax dollars! And, if you wonder why, just look at the above two reasons....those are just a few!
4. Acess to public utilities is amazing! City water, with excellent water pressure, is even on top of the mountain where Jamie lives. She has access to broadband internet through her phone company, and has had for years....even though she lives miles up on the mountain, I can't get it here in the outskirts of Flushing! And like I said in my previous post, gas mains dot the countryside, and I do mean COUNTRYside. Way out in the middle of nowhere you can get natural gas! I have to buy propane and have for seventeen years, with NO hope, EVER of getting natural gas! Four miles from the nearest town, ONE mile from the nearest gas main!!And, as a life-long yankee, I've never met a yankee yet who doesn't think they are highly superior in every way to those patriots who live in the south, but sometimes, I wonder. The state of Alabama is one of the fastest growing: in industry and in high-tech education and jobs. Because of low taxes and low bureacracy.
We've taxed ourselves into oblivion. And like the proverbial frog in the boiling water, we don't realize it until we leave our area and go to another state and take a good look around and talk to the people who live there. I know Alabama isn't perfect, there's room for inprovement in every state! But the basics are there and there's a lot we could learn from them. I won't even get into the road situation here in our state compared to theirs....!
Why exactly, is it that we have made it so that only unionized, government employees are the ones doing the dirty work? Why don't our prisoners grow their own food, make their own clothes and pick up our garbage on the interstates and on our curbs? Instead they have unionized food service and they sit wasting our dollars being non-productive members of society.
Why are people leaving our state in droves, and most of them going to the deep south? I wonder.....