Monday, January 31, 2011

Online Forums

I have belonged to a lot of online forums in the past. Most were concerned with preparedness, homesteading, gardening, survival, freedom/liberty or other topics I am interested i.
I have left several of those forums over the years for various reasons.
Some of the reasons:
1) They no longer met my needs or interested me. Same people posting about the same things over and over to the point that I got bored.

2) Too much DRAMA! Oh yes, we have all experienced forum drama, I am sure!

I just hate Drama Llamas, but the species pops up all the time on internet forums. The ones that ALWAYS have some of crisis going on and totally unloads to their "internet family". The ones that insist their factoids are THE end all and be all and if you disagree you are attacking them personally! Yeah...that is the fastest way for me to *exit--stage left*  when a forum attracts too many of the drama llama species.That is why I left homesteadingtoday. The drama there was overwhelming!

3) Poorly moderated forums. This can run the gamut from non-existent moderation to overly moderated forums. I have seen it all...mass bannings of members because they mildly disagreed with a mod, not banning *trolls* even when it was painfully obvious they were trolls, etc. Bad moderation was why I left frugalsquirrels forum.

4) Too many trolls!!! They derail every discussion, frustrate those that are there for serious discussion and just generally annoy all. If the mods don't get a handle on it quick, it can destroy a forum community. (Backwoodshome used to have a huge troll problem, but they seem to have a handle on it now. I go there once in a great while)

5) When the *tone* of a forum becomes very uncomfortable....examples of this are when members or mods begin pointedly attacking people that belong to a *group* they don't like.I left survivalistboards when a mod (now a former mod, so I have heard...haven't been back there in more than a year) began making fun of mentally challenged/mentally retarded people. I am currently withdrawing from another forum as they constantly attack gays/lesbians by members making statements that "all faggots are going to hell", "all sodomites should die", etc. Yes, that is their opinion and they are welcome to it, I just won't be a party to encouraging such crap. (Since I am currently slowly leaving said site, I won't name it)

6) Forums that charge money for various things....wanna be a *gold* member? It'll cost you to read posts on threads in the *gold* section! Want an avatar pic? It'll cost you! Want to see the members list or our super secret section of pdf files? It'll cost you! Also forums that constantly scream at their members about how much it costs to run the site, how they pay for everything out of their own pocket and it is bankrupting them, etc., etc.Also, group buys constantly being offered and the site owner or mods haranguing members that do not participate.(Another reason I left frugalsquirrels)

7) Finding out that forum admin. is not what/who they purport to be. I left one forum not only because of some of the above reasons (like #6), but also because I found out that the admin's character was not what they presented it to be.(Goodbye pioneerliving)

8) Sometimes I leave a forum simply because of one individual. I had an individual stalk me online and follow me to a forum I frequented. They caused me a lot of grief and hassles in my offline life as well. So, I quietly exited that forum and went on with my life.

9) Sometimes it is a combination of several of the above reasons. Life is far too short to deal with a lot of crap that you invite into your home by switching on your computer!

How to exit a forum (AHA! Now for the practical aspect of this post!)
I generally send a private message to the forum administration informing them that I am leaving the forum and would they please be so kind as to remove my name from the member roles. Surprisingly, even this polite request can be met with aggression and a combative attitude! Be prepared for that! Many forums will keep your name and info on the board, not allow you to delete posts you may wish to delete, etc. Especially if you have posted information they consider valuable/informative.Also, the more members they have, the more money they can get from their advertisers.
If it appears that exiting the forum politely with cooperation from the administration is impossible, then I simply just quit going to the forum. If the forum sends me emails "Hey, you haven't posted in a while, what's up?", I mark them as spam so all future emails from them will be dumped in my spam folder (which I empty without even looking at it)
Once, and ONLY once, I pulled the *Flounce*.

I threw a screaming fit that even bled over into the chat room the forum had.
Not proud of it, and not the way you should leave a forum. A quiet exit where you just make fewer and fewer posts until you are completely gone is best.
It invites few comments except maybe "What-ever happened to Lamby?"
Much classier than a screaming flounce!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

I missed National Pie Day!

Someone told that yesterday was National Pie Day!
Yes, we have a day for that. Honest we do!
Check it out here!

I feel guilty that I did not bake a pie for the occasion, so tonight, I will bake a cherry pie for dessert.
Of course, today is National Spouses Day/Military Spouses Day, so that'll cover that base , too, as my Darlin' Man LOVES cherry pie!
Looking forward to tomorrow....
National Chocolate Cake Day!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Ever Get That Feeling...?

"Somethngs stirrin' in the weeds.:
That's what my maternal grandmother would say when she felt something not-so-good was coming and coming soon.
Recent under reported news stories and government dealings have got me feeling the same way recently.
First there is this bid outreach by FEMA which reads in part:

The purpose of this Request for Information is to identify sources of supply for meals in support of disaster relief efforts based on a catastrophic disaster event within the New Madrid Fault System for a survivor population of 7M(illion) to be utilized for the sustainment of life during a 10-day period of operations....
All meals/kits must have 36 months of remaining shelf life upon delivery.
Posted Date:
January 20, 2011
Response Date:
Feb 03, 2011 11:59 pm Eastern 
Now, they need to know right quick who can deliver these meals, how fast they can deliver, method they would use, etc.
What strikes me as unusual on this is that they only want them to have a 35 MONTH, that's 3 YEAR shelf life.
MRE's and emergency rations that go in bomb shelters and such have a ten to thirty year shelf life. The government orders meal rations all the time for the military. I check out gov. sites to see what they are buying as it does give a good idea of "what' stirrin' in the weeds".
FEMA has also been looking for bids for blankets with this bid outreach. Again, for approx. 7 million people.
And tents as well as other emergency supplies.

What does this mean? Do they know something that we (the American public) do not know and that they (the US government) has not deigned to tell us?

The Dept. of Homeland Security has been doing some interesting shopping as well. They call their particular query a *Request for Information* (as does FEMA and most government agencies. They are looking for body bags .
All this adds up to something...I just don't know what.

Food prices are going up again...all you have to do is stroll through any grocery store and compare the prices now to prices 6 months ago...or even 3 months ago...sometime the prices seem to go up weekly!

As I make preparations for my garden this year, I have decided to double what I had planned on planting.
Maybe I'll be wrong. Who knows?
But if I am not wrong, at least I will be prepared a little better.
I am storing more long term foods, as well. I plan to double my purchases of rice, beans, sugar, etc the next three months---just in case.

Somethings stirrin' in the weeds...

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Every Morning

This is the sight that greets me every morning when I go out to feed.
Nice to know my arrival is so eagerly awaited!
My morning schedule doesn't vary much...for those of you considering getting livestock, think about this!
5:30 a.m.: Get up, toss on jeans and tee shirt, load feed buckets (if I forgot to do it the night before)
5:45 a.m.: Let dogs out, put dog food in their pans, go out door and feed goats and chickens
6:00 a.m.: Check chicken coop for eggs after I give goats the hay to go with their grain
This usually takes me a few minutes as Red, the rooster, may decide he doesn't want me in the coop! I usually have to take the broom in there with me as a pre-emptive move...Red sees the broom and backs off as he knows that broom can whack him!
6:30: Fix breakfast for the fella, cup of tea for myself.
7:00 a.m.: Fella leaves for work, I wake up kids for school. Fix kids breakfast. Try to eat some breakfast myself.
The kids don't get on the bus until 7:55 a.m., so the time from 7:00 a.m. until then is spent making sure they eat their breakfast, have all their books, "YES, you must wear a jacket--it is 34 degrees this morning!", etc.
8:00 a.m. General pick up around house, wash breakfast dishes, wipe table, start laundry, etc.
9:00a.m.: Milk Gabby the goat, put Gabby and other goats out in pasture (that's what we call our huge outer yard), clean goat pens, make sure both pens have fresh water. Shoo chickens out of chicken coop into yard, clean coop and put in fresh water.During this time, I also strain the goats milk and get it in the fridge.
10:00a.m.: Back in house and working on other projects I may have going on...sewing, quilting, etc. I also start bread dough. I peek in the freezer and try to pre-plan dinner as well. May start a pot roast or thaw out some chicken.Hang up laundry, start more laundry (laundry never ends with two teenagers and the fella!)
This all takes me to:
12 Noon: Check on goats. Check coop for eggs again. Fix my second cup of tea and have some lunch (usually some leftovers from dinner the night before, or just  bread, cheese and fruit)
1:00p.m.: Punch down bread dough. Vacuum carpets, sweep and mop kitchen floor. Get back to sewing/quilting while I watch a documentary or news.This is my *relaxing* time. Hang up more laundry.Do my computer work...answering emails, checking various accounts, etc.
3:00p.m.: Form bread into loaves.(I usually let my bread rise 3 times). Take shower.(Best time for this! No kids around, the dogs are finally worn out and taking a nap and my hair will dry before the fella gets home!)
Put away sewing/quilting. Bring in dry laundry and fold and put away.
4:00p.m.: Start dinner. Put evening feed in goat pens and let goats back in pens. Feed chickens and check coop again for eggs. The kids get off the bus at 4:30p.m., so they are sometimes there to help out! Turn compost heap on even days, water it a bit on odd days.Water fruit trees in yard (yes, even in winter, in this dry, parched land)
5:00p.m.: Put bread in oven, help kids with homework (if they have any! Seriously, the homework these kids have isn't even half what I had in the same grades!) Work on dinner.
6:00p.m.: The fella gets home between 6 and 7 (usually) and after he is home, there is dinner, a discussion about the children, goats and chickens and their well-being, etc.
After that, there is the usual after dinner clean up, maybe a little t.v. (we watch a lot of Animal Planet and History channel!), maybe a movie for the whole family to watch (Despicable Me being our most recent)...very funny!)
Depending on what's going on, I usually make it to bed around 10pm, but there have been plenty of Midnights that found me still up!
So, there's an average day (weekday) in my life. Weekends are a different story altogether!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Recipes! Salad Dressings on the cheap!

Sharp eyed readers might have noticed that when I was posting about containers for food storage yesterday, one of the repurposed containers I mentioned was salad dressing bottles.
I use them to dispense my own salad dressings that I make at home. I usually make my dressings in a quart canning jar and then funnel them into a scalded out salad dressing bottle for ease of use.
What kind of dressings do I make?
ALL of them, lol!
The kids are fond of
Ranch Dressing:
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons chopped fresh chives (depends on taste)
  • 1/4 teaspoon of dry dill (or a teaspoon chopped fresh dill)
 Put buttermilk and mayo in quart jar. Mix buttermilk and mayo together until smooth, add rest of ingredients and tightly cap jar. Shake like crazy to mix well. Funnel into salad dressing bottle, store in fridge.
You can take 1/2 cup of this dressing and add it to 1 cup of sour cream for a nice dip for raw veggies. Mix it with cream cheese--1/4 cup of dressing to one of those little packages of cream cheese for a cracker spread.

Italian Dressing is my absolute favorite, as I can *tweak* it for different flavors.
Italian Dressing:
1 c. extra virgin olive oil
1/4 c. apple cider vinegar  OR white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon finely minced fresh oregano OR 1/2 teaspoon dry oregano
1/2 teaspoon finely minced red bell pepper
1/2 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. finely minced garlic or 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 tsp. finely minced onion or 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1 tsp. finely minced parsley
1 tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese

Put all of the above in a quart jar, cap tightly and shake like the dickens. Funnel into scalded out salad dressing bottle, store in fridge.

Raspberry Dressing:
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons raspberry puree (just take about a dozen raspberries and whirl 'em in your blender or put them through a food mill. Or just smush them up real good with a fork and put them in the quart jar, strain them out after a couple days.Or you can use a bit of frozen raspberries.
1 teaspoon honey
Do the same thing you did for the other dressings, except strain out the raspberry solids after letting the dressing sit in your fridge for a couple days. This is REALLY good on fruit salads!

Sesame Ginger Dressing
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil OR 1/2 cup sunflower seed oil (my preference for this one)
1/4 cup sesame seed oil (I prefer toasted sesame seed oil)
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
4 tablespoons soy sauce ( PLEASE use LOW sodium soy sauce!)
2 teaspoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons sesame seeds
1 tablespoon orange juice
1 teaspoon honey
1 tablespoon corn starch

I mix this in a bowl, adding the cornstarch slowly, whisking it in gradually.THEN I funnel it into a salad dressing bottle. Store in fridge.Shake well before using!

I adore salads...could probably live on them, if I had to. Heck, throw in a couple of decent steak salads and chicken salads and a chef salad once in a while and I would probably prefer to live on salads!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Food Storage Options...Cheap Ones!

Recently I was asked on a forum I frequent how I manage to store food. I responded with the usual "budget your food dollar carefully, etc", but that was not the question...What they (patiently explained) meant was:
"What storage methods do you use that don't break the bank?"
Not everyone can afford to buy #10 cans of wheat and rice or 5 gallon buckets of beans from a friendly internet operation or an LDS cannery. Some folks don't have a food saver sealer and can't afford one.

Well, for a very long time, I have used *found* items to store food in. I recycle almost every container I get!
Pickle jars, Mayo jars, Salad Dressing bottles, 2 liter bottles, buckets from a local bakery, etc.

Although I have explained some of this before, I am going to go over it again for those that haven't been reading my blog for too long.

Two liter soda bottles. They are EVERYWHERE! If your household does not drink soda, ask friends or neighbors to save them for you.
Preparing the bottle:
First, scald out your bottles. Run your house tap water as hot as it will get, or heat up water on the stove until it is too hot to touch. Put about 2 cups of the very hot water in the bottle, shake up the bottle and then pour out water. You may have to do this 2 or 3 times if there is dried soda residue in the bottom of the bottle. Scald the screw on tops as well and set them aside to dry! After you scald out the bottles, drain out all the water from them you can and then set them somewhere to dry. Be patient...drying can take 2 to 4 days, depending on the humidity and temperature.
After bottles are dry, you will need Bay Leaves. These lovely leaves are necessary to prevent an invasion of mites, bug larvae, etc in your stored food. Just buy a few bags or a large bottle of them in the spice section of your local grocery. Dried bay leaves are fairly inexpensive and well worth the investment!
Put one or two bay leaves in the bottle, then commence filling the bottle with what you plan to store. I have used this method to store: Rice, Beans, Flour, Salt (bay leaves not necessary for salt), wheat, instant potato flakes and dried/powdered milk.
A funnel is a good idea. I make my own from poster board or heavy paper so they will fit snugly in the bottle.
Fill the bottle to within about and inch from the top, drop in another one or two bay leaves and then fill all the way to the top and CAP VERY TIGHTLY. You may even want to dip the top of the bottle in melted bees wax to get a complete seal, or tightly wrap some duct tape around the cap to ensure there is no way air or humidity can leak in and ruin your efforts.
Store bottles in a cool dry place.
I have had rice and beans stored this way for 15 years and they tasted just fine!

Ziplock Storage method.
Ziplock bags are a great way to store some foods, especially if you do not have a Food Saver sealing unit.
I normally use the quart size or bigger FREEZER bags as they are sturdy...and sturdy is good, for our purposes.
For flour, again, drop in a couple of bay leaves, put in the amount of flour that can be comfortably stored in the bag that will allow you to close it and seal it.As you seal, make sure you get out as much air as possible. NOW, put that bag inside another one and seal the second bag (I know, I know, seems wasteful to use two bags, but I am overly cautious!) Using duct tape (I loves me some duct tape!) seal the second bag with that.
I also use Ziplock bags to store sugar, pasta, and other dried goods.I usually line a cardboard box with a white unscented trash bag , put my bags in there, fold the trash bag over them and then seal the box up.
Again, store in a cool dry place.

I LOVE all the little *odds and ends* jars I end up with! Pickle and mayo jars, jelly and jam jars with good lids are such a good thing!
I store spices in them, homemade mixes for 15 bean soup, my chicken fry breading, my homemade hot chocolate mixes, popcorn (I buy the unpopped old fashioned stuff in a bag), dry pasta, odds and ends of various dry goods when it is too much to toss to the chickens but not quite enough to do anything with. I just add to the jar until it is enough to do something with!
I have a few 1 gallon picle jars that I use to make kim-chi. They work just great!

I get used 5 gallon buckets (for free!) from a local bakery. They even save the lids for me! These are great for bulk food storage of beans, rice and wheat. Most people advocate using dry ice to evacuate the oxygen, but I just never have the transportation or funds to scamper around town looking for dry ice!
I scrub those suckers out very well. First a rinse with scalding water to get any and all food debris out. Then a soapy wash. Then I put in 1/4 cup of bleach and fill to the top with scalding water, let set about 2 hours and then rinse it like crazy with hot water. Finally, I dry it out and let it set overnight to make sure it is dry.
My method is (wait for it...), I get some bay leaves (you knew that was coming, didn't you?), drop 5 or 6 in the bottom of the bucket, fill it halfway with the item I am storing, drop in a few more bay leaves, fill it to the top and drop a few more bay leaves on top. I then put the top on and seal it with (here it comes again!) duct tape.

My main expenses for food storage materials are Bay leaves, Duct Tape and Ziplock Freezer Bags. And the scalding hot water, too, I guess!

Food storage does not require exotic supplies or unlimited funds. Using what you already have access to, you can start and maintain a good food storage system. All these containers will fit quite nicely in the bottom of a closet, under a bed, where-ever, so it doesn't require a massive *food bunker* to have a decent amount of food stored.
Remember to rotate your food storage, too. Store what you eat and eat what you store, people!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Unemployed? Looking for Work?

I see a lot in the news about unemployment and people desperately looking for work.
I have "been there, done that".
I have no magic solution for everyone, but I do have some ideas, some of which worked for me in years past.
So, if you are currently looking for employment, or have family or friends that are, keep reading!
First, if you are in the proper age range and in decent physical shape, check out the military.
ESPECIALLY if you have a college degree! A college degree will put you on the fast track to "officers country". The military can provide you with housing, medical care and many other perks. If you are fluent in more than one language, they will definitely want to speak to you!
I know, I know...a lot of people are whining about "What if I get deployed?" Suck it up. With reward comes some risk!
In the military you can learn skills that will help you in the *civvie* world, get benefits that will help you get more schooling and even help you purchase a home.

If you smoke marijuana or use other drugs, stop 30 days before your physical. Drugs are bad, mmmmmm-kay? You can live without them!

Next option:
Farm Work.
Check out the classifieds on . You can even place an ad on there for free! Other places to look are: Agriseek  ,  AgriCareersInc and Farm&Ranch Jobs .
I quickly scanned ads at all three of those and WOW, some of the pay is darn good! $35k a year may not sound like much....but it includes a house AND utilities! Most farms also include giving the workers a side of beef or a pig every year. housing utility bills, plus plenty of meat on the table...that makes up for a lot right there!
The work is hard. Cows don't care if it's your birthday, crops don't care when you want to take a day off!
You have to work in all kinds of weather. You may have to move far away (Lots of jobs in the Dakotas, Wyoming, Montana, Kansas, Oklahoma, Iowa, etc) If you love bright lights and big cities, you will most likely hate these jobs!
But the perks are amazing....I worked on a cattle branding crew in Montana...and I have to tell you, waking up and saddling a horse as the sun was just casting a few glimmers on the sky, then riding up in the pasture as the sun rose over the mountains....just exhilarating and beautiful! Sitting on the cabin porch at night and listening to coyotes yip on the hillside and seeing the brightest stars ever was incredible!
Yes, I went to bed with sore muscles and cramping hands more than once. But the trade offs were most definitely worth it!

You can also look into property caretaking jobs. You live on site (usually) and are responsible for the care and maintenance of a property for an absent owner, OR sometimes they caretake properties where the owner is in residence, but doesn't want to deal with day to day issues.
Check Caretaking Jobs or the ever popular Caretaker Gazette . There is also Craigslist which you can search, as I have frequently found jobs for caretakers on there.
You need good personal references to be a caretaker! SQUEAKY CLEAN. If you have a criminal record, fuggidaboutit. I have worked as a caretaker, and the reference checks and criminal background checks are VERY thorough. If you pass....the opportunities are amazing...private islands, multi-million dollar country estates, vacation homes in the mountains or luxury apartments in the city. OR...dude ranches out west, secluded island home off the coast of Alaska (a job I almost took once!), *hobby* farms in the northeast. You have to be able to put up with what I consider *spoiled* people and very demanding owners. They may call at 2 a.m. and say they are on the way...could you please make all the beds in the house and set out a small buffet for a breakfast at 6 a.m? Oh...and while you are at it, be a dear and make sure there are fresh cut flowers in the foyer and dining room. Yes, they CAN be like that.
Another way is to contact local real estate companies and banks and let them know of your availability to caretake empty homes. With all the foreclosures going on, empty properties are being vandalized, etc. and banks are willing to pay for someone to live in some of the higher-ticket properties to keep them safe. You have to be willing to live with almost no privacy as showings can happen at any time! You also need to be able to pick up and move immediately if a sale happens!

Other income opportunites are out there...
If you love to cook and bake (and you are good at it), consider cooking for busy working families. Put up ads at Daycare centers, Lamaze classes, gynecologists offices, etc.(Wouldn't it have been nice to come home from the hospital with a new baby and had a couple dozen meals in the freezer ready to be microwaved?)

If you are *handy* with basic home repairs, advertise on Craigslist locally, or place ads up at local Senior Centers advertising yourself for "Honey-Do" repair and maintenance jobs.

Do you sew, knit, crochet, quilt?  Do you do food prep for storage?
People pay other people to do these things or to teach them how to do these things.

Look at your talents...look at your skills.
You are NOT in a can work your way out of there...look at yourself and your knowledge and skills. Assess them. Look at jobs that may not fit *precisely* with what you want to do.
Good luck and keep trying!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Still on the health kick here!

So, I cornered the fella and the kids last night and forced them to watch Chow Down on Hulu.
Then we had a family discussion.
The fella said he could give up anything EXCEPT: Real Butter and Salt.
Girl said she could give up everything except: Red Meat and Candy.
Boy said he would eat more salads, but wouldn't give up : Red Meat and Salt and Butter.
See what I am up against?
I have my weaknesses as well. Mine are bread and my beloved Dr. Pepper. soda for me and we have finished up (last night) the last delicious loaf of crusty home baked bread. I used it to make meatball subs.
Since everyone prefers butter and I absolutely HATE nasty margarine (seriously, it is worse for your health than butter in equal amounts!), we will continue to use real butter.
I am real cautious with salt in my cooking, so I will try to stealthily banish the salt shaker from the table.
Red meat? Well, last night the meatball subs I made were (DON'T TELL THE KIDS!) 1/3 actual lean ground chuck. The other 2/3rds? Tofu, bread crumbs, an egg, chopped onion and celery and grated carrots!
And the fella and the kids LOVED them! (Sneaky sneaky me!)
I baked the meatballs (no fried food is the first major change here!), then soaked and simmered them in a lovely tomato sauce spiced with garlic, oregano, a bit of basil and a touch of cloves.Had a big salad with the subs.
Because I am a "leftover queen" as the fella says, tonight we will have duck wraps and a Korean soba noodle soup.
I have a duck carcass left over from Christmas that I wrapped up and put in the freezer. Took it out this morning and tossed it in the stockpot along with chopped celery, onion and garlic.Later, after it has simmered for a few hours, I will strain out the solids and have a beautiful soup stock to start my soup with. I will pick out the meat and bones, discard the bones and save the meat for my wraps.
Into the stock will go sliced leeks, sliced carrots and soba noodles. I will whirl the cooked celery, garlic and onion in a blender and stir that into the stock, along with some red bean paste and a touch of sesame oil.
The wraps will have duck meat, lettuce, green onion and avocado and a dressing I will make.
I am making the wraps this morning---whole wheat, so I won't have to deal with trying to make them at dinner time.
Here's the recipe I use:


  • 4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup warm water


  1. In a large bowl, stir together flour, salt and baking powder. Pour in water; stir to combine. Mix in additional water in 1 tablespoon increments, until a soft pliable dough is formed.
  2. Knead briefly on a lightly floured surface. Divide dough into 16 equal pieces. Cover and let rest for 20 minutes.
  3. Flour each ball well, place between two pieces of wax paper and roll out to desired size and thickness.
  4. Heat an ungreased skillet or frying pan over medium-high heat. Peel away wax paper and grill rounds until brown flecks appear underneath. Turn and cook other side. Serve warm or cool and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Diet Can Prevent Diabetes, Heart Attacks and Cancer...

I have been thinking a lot about my health, my fellas health and the health of others I care for.
This morning I watched a great is almost 2 hours long, but well worth the watch! I found it on Hulu. It is called Chow Down (just click on the name to go watch it!)
Watching that documentary has made me even more determined to get a good garden going this spring and providing healthy food for my family here.My fella (like most American men) is of the opinion that unless there is a juicy slab of meat on his plate, dinner has NOT been served! I am going to have to convince him and the kids that having a meatless meal is NOT torture! I do have them eating salads about twice to three times a week now, thank goodness. I probably won't be able to switch them completely to a meatless diet, but perhaps I can get them to view vegetables and fruit as friends and not enemies!
Just to open your eyes a bit more...think about this....the US is considered the richest, most powerful nation on earth, yet we are NOT the healthiest!
I ended up going to Wikipedia looking up diet, longevity, cultural diets and a slew of other food related topics and found this:

Rank by
UN member
Rank by
Entity↓ Overall life expectancy at birth↓ Male life expectancy at birth↓ Female life expectancy at birth↓
- 1  Macau 84.36 81.39 87.47
1 2  Andorra 82.51 80.33 84.84
2 3  Japan 82.12 78.8 85.62
3 4  Singapore 81.98 79.37 84.78
4 5  San Marino 81.97 78.53 85.72
- 6  Hong Kong 81.86 79.16 84.79
5 7  Australia 81.63 79.25 84.14
6 8  Canada 81.23 78.69 83.91
7 9  France (metropolitan) 80.98 77.79 84.33
8 10  Sweden 80.86 78.59 83.26
9 11  Switzerland 80.85 78.03 83.83
- 12  Guernsey 80.77 77.76 83.88
10 13  Israel 80.73 78.62 82.95
11 14  Iceland 80.67 78.53 82.9

15  Anguilla 80.65 78.11 83.26

16  Cayman Islands 80.44 77.2 83.72

17  Bermuda 80.43 77.65 83.26
12 18  New Zealand 80.36 78.43 82.39
13 19  Italy 80.2 77.26 83.33

20  Gibraltar 80.19 77.3 83.22
14 21  Monaco 80.09 76.3 84.09
15 22  Liechtenstein 80.06 76.59 83.53
16 23  Spain 80.05 76.74 83.57
17 24  Norway 79.95 77.29 82.74

25  Jersey 79.75 77.23 82.46
18 26  Greece 79.66 77.11 82.37
19 27  Austria 79.5 76.6 82.56

28  Faroe Islands 79.44 77 82.05
20 29  Malta 79.44 76.95 81.47
21 30  Netherlands 79.4 76.8 82.14
22 31  Luxembourg 79.33 76.07 82.81
23 32  Germany 79.26 76.26 82.42
24 33  Belgium 79.22 76.06 82.53

34  Saint Pierre and Miquelon 79.07 76.69 81.57

35  U.S. Virgin Islands 79.05 76.02 82.26
25 36  United Kingdom 79.01 76.52 81.63
26 37  Finland 78.97 75.48 82.61
27 38  Jordan 78.87 76.34 81.56

39  Isle of Man 78.82 75.86 81.93
28 40  South Korea 78.72 77.45 82.22

41  European Union 78.67 75.54 81.97

42  Puerto Rico
( US)
78.53 74.85 82.39
29 43  Bosnia and Herzegovina 78.5 74.92 82.34

44  Saint Helena 78.44 75.52 81.5
30 45  Cyprus 78.33 75.91 80.86
31 46  Denmark 78.3 75.96 80.78
32 47  Ireland 78.24 75.6 81.06
33 48  Portugal 78.21 74.95 81.69

49  Wallis and Futuna 78.2 75.22 81.32
34 50  United States 78.11 75.65 80.69
35 51  Albania 77.96 75.28 80.89

52  Taiwan 77.96 75.12 81.05
36 53  Kuwait 77.71 76.51 78.95
37 54  Costa Rica 77.58 74.96 80.34
38 55  Cuba 77.45 75.19 79.85
39 56  Chile 77.34 74.07 80.77
40 57  Libya 77.26 74.98 79.65

58  British Virgin Islands 77.26 76.03 78.55
41 59  Panama 77.25 74.47 80.16
42 60  Slovenia 76.92 73.25 80.84
43 61  Czech Republic 76.81 73.54 80.28
44 62  Georgia 76.72 73.41 80.45

63  French Polynesia ( France) 76.31 73.88 78.86

64  Northern Mariana Islands
( US)
76.71 74.26 79.29

65  Netherlands Antilles ( Netherlands) 76.65 74.03 79.09
45 66  Argentina 76.56 73.32 79.97
46 67  Saint Lucia 76.45 73.78 79.27
47 68  Uruguay 76.35 73.1 79.72
48 69  Saudi Arabia 76.3 74.23 78.48
49 75  Poland 76.28 73.12 79.44
50 70  United Arab Emirates 76.11 73.56 78.78
51 71  Mexico 76.06 73.25 79
52 72  Tunisia 75.78 73.98 77.7
53 73  Paraguay 75.77 73.19 78.49
54 74  Brunei 75.74 73.52 78.07
55 76  Dominica 75.55 72.61 78.64

77  Turks and Caicos Islands 75.42 73.12 77.83
56 78  Slovakia 75.4 71.47 79.53
57 79  Croatia 75.35 71.72 79.18
58 80  Qatar 75.35 71.66 77.14
59 81  Ecuador 75.3 72.37 78.37

82  Aruba ( Netherlands) 75.28 72.25 78.38
60 83  Bahrain 75.16 72.64 77.76
61 84  Sri Lanka 75.14 73.08 77.28

85  New Caledonia
( France)
74.98 71.99 78.12
62 86  Lithuania 74.9 69.98 80.1
63 87  Antigua and Barbuda 74.76 72.81 76.81
64 88  Macedonia 74.68 72.18 77.38

89  West Bank 74.54 72.54 76.65

90  Cook Islands 74.22 71.46 77.13
65 91  Oman 74.16 71.87 76.55
66 92  Algeria 74.02 72.35 75.77
67 93  Mauritius 74 70.53 77.65
68 94  Maldives 73.97 71.78 76.28
69 95  Barbados 73.94 71.65 76.26
70 96  Serbia 73.9 71.09 76.89
71 97  Suriname 73.73 71 76.65

98  American Samoa ( US) 73.72 70.8 76.82
72 99  Dominican Republic 73.7 71.88 75.6
73 100  Solomon Islands 73.69 71.14 76.37
74 101  Lebanon 73.66 71.15 76.31
75 102  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 73.65 71.82 75.54
76 103  Venezuela 73.61 70.54 76.83
77 104  Jamaica 73.53 71.83 75.3
78 105  People's Republic of China 73.47 71.61 75.52
79 106  Hungary 73.44 69.27 77.87

107  Gaza Strip 73.42 71.82 75.12
80 108  Malaysia 73.29 70.56 76.21
81 109  Saint Kitts and Nevis 73.2 70.33 76.25
82 110  Thailand 73.1 70.77 75.55
83 111  Bulgaria 73.09 69.48 76.91
84 112  Seychelles 73.02 68.33 77.85
85 113  Estonia 72.82 67.45 78.53
86 114  Colombia 72.81 68.98 76.76

115  Montserrat 72.76 74.74 70.68
87 116  Armenia 72.68 69.06 76.81
88 117  Romania 72.45 68.95 76.16
89 118  El Salvador 72.33 68.72 76.11
90 119  Latvia 72.15 66.98 77.59
91 120  Egypt 72.12 69.56 74.81
92 121  Brazil 71.99 68.43 75.73
93 122  Turkey 71.96 70.12 73.89
94 123  Uzbekistan 71.96 68.95 75.15
95 124  Samoa 71.86 69.03 74.84
96 125  Morocco 71.8 69.42 74.3
97 126  Cape Verde 71.61 68.27 75.05
98 127  Vietnam 71.58 68.78 74.57
99 128  Nicaragua 71.5 69.35 73.75
100 129  Palau 71.22 68.08 74.54
101 130  Marshall Islands 71.19 69.15 73.34
102 131  Syria 71.19 69.8 72.68
103 132  Iran 71.14 69.65 72.72
104 133  Philippines 71.09 68.17 74.15
105 134  Federated States of Micronesia 70.94 69.06 72.93
106 135  Trinidad and Tobago 70.86 67.98 73.82
107 136  Moldova 70.8 67.1 74.71
108 137  Indonesia 70.76 68.26 73.38
109 138  Peru 70.74 68.33 68.88
110 139  Fiji 70.73 68.18 73.41
111 140  Tonga 70.73 68.18 73.41
112 141  Belarus 70.63 64.95 76.67
113 142  Guatemala 70.29 68.49 72.19

143  Greenland ( Denmark) 70.07 67.44 72.85
114 144  Iraq 69.94 68.6 71.34
115 145  India 69.89 67.46 72.61
116 146  Kyrgyzstan 69.43 65.43 73.64
117 147  Honduras 69.4 67.86 71.02
118 148  Tuvalu 69.29 66.99 71.7
119 149  São Tomé and Príncipe 68.32 66.65 70.04
120 150  Ukraine 68.25 62.37 74.5
121 151  Belize 68.2 66.44 70.05
122 152  Kazakhstan 67.87 62.58 73.47
123 153  Turkmenistan 67.87 64.94 70.95
124 154  Mongolia 67.65 65.23 70.19
125 155  East Timor 67.27 64.92 69.75
126 156  Bolivia 66.89 64.2 69.72
127 157  Guyana 66.68 64.09 69.4
128 158  Azerbaijan 66.66 62.53 71.34
- -  World 66.57 64.52 68.76
129 159  Papua New Guinea 66.34 64.08 68.72
130 160  Bhutan 66.13 65.33 66.97
131 161  Russia 66.03 59.33 73.14
132 162  Grenada 65.95 64.06 67.85
133 163  The Bahamas 65.78 62.63 68.98
134 164  Nepal 65.46 64.3 66.67
135 165  Tajikistan 65.33 62.29 68.52
136 166  Pakistan 64.49 63.4 65.64
137 167  Nauru 64.2 60.58 68.01
138 168  Vanuatu 63.98 62.37 65.66
139 169  North Korea 63.81 61.23 66.53
140 170  Comoros 63.47 61.07 65.94
141 171  Burma 63.39 61.17 65.74
142 172  Yemen 63.27 61.3 65.33
143 173  Kiribati 63.22 60.14 66.45

174  Mayotte ( France) 62.91 60.65 65.24
144 175  Madagascar 62.89 60.93 64.91
145 176  Cambodia 62.1 60.03 64.27
146 177  Botswana 61.85 61.72 61.99
147 178  Eritrea 61.78 59.71 63.9
148 179  Equatorial Guinea 61.61 60.71 62.54
149 180  Haiti 60.78 59.13 62.48
150 181  Mauritania 60.37 58.22 62.59
151 182  Bangladesh 60.25 57.57 63.03
152 183  Ghana 59.85 58.98 60.75
153 184  Benin 59 57.83 60.23
154 185  Senegal 59 57.12 60.93
155 186  Togo 58.69 56.56 60.88
156 187  Kenya 57.86 57.49 58.24
157 188  Guinea 57.09 55.63 58.6
158 189  Laos 56.68 54.56 58.9
159 190  Côte d'Ivoire 55.45 54.64 56.28
160 191  Ethiopia 55.41 52.92 57.97
161 192  The Gambia 55.35 53.43 57.34
162 193  Democratic Republic of the Congo 54.36 52.58 56.2

194  Western Sahara 54.32 52 56.73
163 195  Republic of the Congo 54.15 52.9 55.43
164 196  Cameroon 53.69 52.89 54.52
165 197  Gabon 53.11 52.19 54.05
166 198  Burkina Faso 52.95 51.04 54.91
167 199  Uganda 52.72 51.66 53.81
168 200  Niger 52.6 51.39 53.85
169 201  Burundi 52.09 51.2 53.01
170 202  Tanzania 52.01 50.56 53.51
171 203  Sudan 51.42 50.49 52.4
172 204  Namibia 51.24 51.61 50.86
173 205  Rwanda 50.52 49.25 51.83
174 206  Mali 50.35 48.38 52.38
175 207  Somalia 49.63 47.78 51.53
176 208  South Africa 48.98 49.81 48.13
177 209  Guinea-Bissau 47.9 46.07 49.79
178 210  Chad 47.7 46.67 48.77
179 211  Nigeria 46.94 46.16 47.76
180 212  Zimbabwe 45.77 46.36 45.16
181 213  Afghanistan 44.64 44.47 44.81
182 214  Central African Republic 44.47 44.4 44.54
183 215  Malawi 43.82 44.07 43.57
184 216  Djibouti 43.37 41.89 44.89
185 217  Liberia 41.84 40.71 43
186 218  Sierra Leone 41.24 38.92 43.64
187 219  Mozambique 41.18 41.83 40.53
188 220  Lesotho 40.38 41.18 39.54
189 221  Zambia 38.63 38.53 38.73
190 222  Angola 38.2 37.24 39.22
191 223  Swaziland 31.88 31.62 32.15

  Did you happen to see where the United States was on that chart?

We are NOT Number 1!