Saturday, August 08, 2009

A little at a time chores

My plant that was sick is blooming again!

Yawn... I've been up since 5:30 this morning when my cell phone started alerting me it was low on batteries. I was so sleepy but it kept complaining until I finally was awake for good and plugged it in, which is what it wanted all along. One must wonder at times just how smart our technology has become. Sheesh...

I know the feeling about so many great blogs out there and not enough time to read . I have all my favorites on two rss feeds, most of those I read daily on one and those I may read only from time to time on another. (Those are mostly decorating and homeschooling blogs I want to read but leave for those evenings I have more time to enjoy.) There are a few I click on the title and go to the original post... those I prefer to read at the actual blog site.

Right now there is so much work to be done that it could be overwhelming. I've been getting a lot accomplished just fifteen minutes here and there. It is remarkable to me how much I can get done by committing only fifteen minutes or so... consistently.

All of my silver plate serving pieces have been on the dining table, either in some stage of tarnish or proudly displayed in their shining glory. I have a nice collection, all purchased at garage sales, Goodwill, or thrift stores... even after getting rid of those which I either didn't plan to use again or they demanded too much attention by tarnishing quickly and being difficult to clean.

The most I ever paid was $25.00 and that was for the entire tea set with huge silver platter (which I do not keep on the buffet with the set.... just too big). The cheapest were the Paul Revere candle sticks, purchased for $1.00 at a garage sale because the woman didn't like polishing silver.

Everything needs a little polishing with MAAS once in awhile, except the silver plate flatware I bought at a garage sale... it gets washed in hot, soapy water alone after being used and then dried by hand and put back in its' box which keeps it from tarnishing. Fortunately, I don't mind polishing silver at all. It's enjoyable seeing the tarnish leave and the sparkle come back. :)

I've also been weeding the back yard along the fence line a little at a time before the very hot and humid weather is to set in for awhile (we've been spoiled this summer with nice weather!). I have to use my left arm but by working just a little at a time but consistently each day... it will eventually look good.

The wet spring caused not only more weeds than usual and it was too wet to get out and pull them when they were smaller. Our property was once a very dense forest... it all tries to come back each spring, especially among all the greenery and bushes next to the long fence line.

Since I was already awake this morning, I thoroughly cleaned the kitchen and did the dishes which had assembled after dinner last night. (Sometimes I think dishes reproduce by themselves while I sleep.)

I sliced cucumbers and placed them in a vinegar, sugar, salt solution for my husband's lunch (at his request) and I simmered black beans to be used in a recipe this evening. I read an article recently in one of the America's Test Kitchen magazines about research they did in cooking beans... they found it only required one half an hour of extra cooking time for most beans if they hadn't been soaked overnight... and that they do not get tough when cooked in salted water but actually taste better.

Since then I've simmered beans their way and found it so much easier, especially when I decide at the last minute I want to cook beans but didn't soak them. (They also said cooking them an extra half an hour gave a better texture than bringing them to a boil and letting them set an hour before cooking again.) I always learn something from these people!

Anyhoo... that is how I came to sit on the comfy old sofa in the family room and type away while watching a show about earthquakes on the National Geographic Channel. I don't know if I ever mentioned I insisted my husband buy earthquake insurance after we had teeny tiny tremors a couple years ago (try to say that rapidly in a row). For my California friends... I think it only added about $20.00 a year to our policy... but if the New Madrid fault ever shakes again... we're covered! :)

Will meet with you for tea tomorrow... God willing and the creek don't rise... or the earth shake.


scrappy quilter said...

I found doing things in 15 min increments helped make my day so much easier. I too find there are so many wonderful blogs out there. I could spend all day visiting blogs if I let myself. I've had to become very disciplined when it comes to the internet.

Great post Brenda!!

DarcyLee said...

It does take discipline to not spend too much time on the Internet these days. I usually spend just a few minutes here and there on the computer, just like you mentioned in your post about housework. It is amazing what you can do in just 15 minutes time. I've heard of setting a timer for 15 minutes, thereby getting things done a little bit at a time with enough time to get other things done. I have learned alot from America's Test Kitchen, too. They always give me something I didn't know before and can use.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the information on cooking beans. I always presoak or do the 3 min. in boiling water thingie. Stopped adding the salt too. Now I will be a non soaker!! Since we Love beans and use them often this will be a big help!! :)
Yes so many times I too feel the job is tooo big for the time or energy I have for it. When I do the 15 or even 10 minutes at a task it sure warms the cockles of your heart to see Something getting done verses Nothing! Maybe it is the same mindset we have when we save even 25 cents in a jar at time because we know it will add up to more over time. Some people will not even pick up change they drop cause they feel it is not worth their time!! Imagine that!!
Some days I think everyone has the same 24 hours in a day. Well when I take time to look at blogs on the internet some of that time I have is gone...yes but it is so informative and so relaxing and such a joy!! I guess we have to learn balance. :) It is hard some days though to set a timer and then shut off the reading isen't it.!! :) Jody

Pear tree cottage! said...

At last I have organised my blog to add you as a freind to my dashboard........I adore visiting you and had missed you for the longest time, but here I am now and looking forward to many visits and many cups of tea together.


Kristi in the Western Reserve said...

I have been looking for a more effective silver polish and have now ordered a tube of MAAS. Thanks for mentioning this. I'd never heard of it before.......And yes, I'm another that needs to keep doing those 15minutes! (And once I do that I often find I spend a little more time...) And the timer for the internet (mentioned in a comment) is a great idea!

jules said...

I always used to either soak or do the 3 min boiling soaking thing with beans too. My DH never soaks his beans. I think the only difference between ours is that my beans hold their shape and his break up and get mushy. I love his beans though.

Becky said...

I thought that the main reason to soak the beans was to help break down the somethings (proteins maybe?) that cause people tummy trouble with the beans? Anyway, I have 2 very small children and need to do lots of cooking ahead and have had very good luck with soaking beans in the crockpot insert overnight, cooking all day in the crockpot on low- switching to high late in the day if they seem to need it and then freezing them in 1 2/3 cup measures so they are the same as a can of beans. You get the inexpensiveness and salt control of cooking your own with the handy aspects of canned.