Thank you for the kind birthday greetings.
Stephanie left a message for me, calling from Ambleside... we were away from home when she called. Because of the time difference, I ended up talking to her this morning. I always ask her to describe everything! Her meeting with the Charlotte Mason biographer sounded so interesting.
We ended up going to lunch at a buffet for my birthday amidst a day of running errands (it was cheaper than the cafeteria would have been). Oh my, I told my husband before we walked back to the car that I had eaten more in the past hour then I usually eat in a week. :)
Today I will be freezing items from the garden and work on the pantry posts. I need to write the information out first to get my thoughts all together. It is amazing how different things look when we have to write them down (like when we write down everything we eat when on a diet or all that we purchase for our budget).
Recently we agreed to be a Nielsen TV ratings family and we had to write down everything we watched for an entire week (including if the TV was on and no one was watching). As I told Christopher, I started watching COPS one evening and decided I didn't want to write that down in the diary so I changed the channel. :)
All that to say... I'll be back later with more pantry posts because I believe deepening the pantry is more important now more than ever before. Some people will be like me where I have a very small pantry (given limited income) but others will be able to do even more, like I used to do when we had a larger house and available finances.
I am learning so much from my first year of raised bed gardening. One of my favorite movies is For Richer or Poorer (it's silly but it has a great message about materialism vs. simplicity). There is a scene near the end when the Tim Allen character is looking at the corn and just amazed that he had grown it. That's how I have felt when harvesting green beans this past week... I planted those seeds and look at them now!
I'm convinced there may be a time this autumn and/or winter when people may be quarantined due to the H1N1 virus. I don't hear as much about it on the national news anymore, but it is big news locally as there have been many more cases and local medical professionals believe it may come back even stronger.
I'll also try to comment on some comments soon. Off the top of my head, you can make your own lemon infused olive oil (Kimberly gave a link that I will look up) but some of the lemon infused olive oils are created that way during the pressing when the lemons and olives are pressed together.
Should you make your own garlic infused olive oil, be sure to keep it in the frig! Probably not a bad idea when we make any of our own infused oils, just to be safe. Of course, infused vinegars are safe on our pantry shelves... if I'm wrong let me know!
I had to buy kitty kibble for Sasha yesterday at Target so I checked their olive oil display while there to be able to tell you more about infused oils. They have about four or five different kinds of infused olive oils (including lemon, red pepper, garlic, and one that contained basil) all with their own label.
Of course, the gourmet shops almost all sell them at higher prices and one would think they are also made with an equally higher quality of extra virgin olive oil (one would hope). I've only purchased the gourmet shop oil once and that was when they had an excellent price on a Meyer lemon infused oil (I love Meyer lemons). That was a few years ago and I haven't found a Meyer infused oil since then, which is probably good given my grocery budget. :)