March 28, 2012

In like a lion, out like a lamb

It is late March and the areas that I grew up in are experiencing full blown Spring. Blossom on trees, daffodils opening up in the sunshine, lambs grazing in a field. If I have triggered your gag reflex already you may want to skip this post.

Here in the inland northwest and north Idaho, we are still in winter. Snow is not a surprising event and don't think about putting your hat and gloves away yet. However, for the past couple of weeks I have been closely watching the ground and the trees for signs that Spring is coming. Living in a new home with a new yard is really quite fun because I do not know what to expect. Will the trees bloom into flowers or go right to leaves? Are there bulbs quietly waiting under the ground? Is that plant a weed or something more exciting?

Yesterday, we had a breakthrough.......


I might have skipped around the garden.... shhh, its our secret. It took me a little facebook, ask a friend help to even identify these beautiful little rays of sunshine. I am a very novice gardener. Hahahaha, I'm laughing because I just used the words "I" and "gardener" in the same sentence....

 Morning dew on the Crocus buds.

 Spring is emerging!

There are also purple ones!!! I decided to go on a little "Spring is coming" photo scavenger hunt....

Daffodils?? Anyone care to make a wager on the bloom date?

Not sure on these guys....tulips??? Can not wait to find out!!!!

Does anyone know what this fella is? He is kinda tucked away in the side yard with now other plants around...

Rhododendron buds waiting to bloom. I wonder what color they are?!?!

In the spirit of Spring and having my first garden, I am really excited to try growing vegetables. Try is a big word in that sentence. I could probably become a professional plant killer if my record of house plants is anything to go by. But I am going in with low hopes and expectations. If I eat anything that I grow this summer I will call it a very pleasant surprise. That being said I planted a few seeds. It is still a little early so I put then I'm this home made 'greenhouse' that I move indoors on cold nights. I made it from one of those salad containers.

My little greenhouse waiting for some rays of sunshine. Obviously, IF anything sprouts here I will needs to get another bottom to put on top as the lid to allow for more vertical room. 

Are you done with my jabbering on about Spring yet??? 

I'm SOOO excited!!!

March 1, 2012

Have your popcorn, and eat it too!

Hold the phones people!!!!

So you know those magic little bags that they made with super powers for microwaving popcorn instead of using a stove top? The ones that we pay $1-$2 for a bag when we know that the actual popcorn kernels cost mere pennies? The ones that you avoid reading the ingredient list because you know they filled the bag of your healthy snack with preservatives, food colouring and artificial flavours?

Well my friends, along with myself, you have been had!  Those bags are not magical!! You can make popcorn in a brown paper lunch bag.

OK Ill give you a moment to digest what that means....

The convenience of microwavable popcorn...

Lots of $$$ savings....

No extra mystery ingredients....

Pop as little or as much popcorn as YOU want.....

Add your desired seasonings on any whim you have.....

Reduce packaging and waste...

Did I mention the extra $$ in your pocket?

I don't know if you are as excited as I am about this but I might have had popcorn for dinner last night.... and as a mid morning snack today. Not going to rule it out as an afternoon snack either...

OK, lets be honest. Most things that save money are a little harder to execute. This is easy.... fun even. I promise.

Get your brown paper bag. 
Pour in about 3 TBS of kernels... I eyeball it. 
Add a splash of oil, I am using vegetable but I want to try peanut. Then shake shake shake (maybe sing the song a little). 
Fold the top over a couple of times. 
Microwave on high until you hear the popping slow (about 2 minutes).
 Season and enjoy!

I enjoy my popcorn with a TBSP of melted Earth Balance, sprinkling of nutritional yeast and a pinch of sea salt. 
Get crazy... Chocolate - good! Cinnamon - good! Cayenne Pepper - hot!

There was a good ten minutes between these photos... I think.

Now what are you gonna do with all that money you save??? You know momma needs a new pair of shoes... JK!