Friday, September 28, 2012

Freaking myself out

I don't know why but for the past month or so I have been kind of obsessing about preparing for a disaster.

I am not a proponent of the whole 2012 end of the world scenario etc. but for some reason I keep thinking about having a back log of supplies/ food/ first aid stuff/ water etc.

I can't explain why I feel this way, but I do.

You have to understand, I am not the type of person who goes off the deep end about stuff, or over reacts, but for some reason I cannot shake this feeling that something bad is going to happen.

And it is kind of freaking me out.

Hubby doesn't understand, but through the years I have learned to trust my instincts. Example:
About 11 years ago right after we built/moved into our home we decided to hire someone to finish off our basement. We interviewed a few guys and hubby decided he liked this one young guy the best- plus he was one of the lower bids. Hubby said "he's just a young guy starting out trying to get business".

There was something about the guy... I couldn't put my finger on it, but I REALLY didn't want to use him. Ultimately I conceded and hubby hired him.

We had nothing but problems with the guy. He began work on finishing our basement at the end of July. I wasn't working at the time so I was home all the time- and half of the time no one showed up to work. We got excuses like"my foreman was in an accident", "my men didn't show up", "we are just finishing up another job and will be there as soon as we're done". There were other issues with him but too many to list.

This went on until the week before Thanksgiving.  
YES I said mid November!
They built our entire home in less time than it was taking this guy to finish off our basement!

Finally it was Thursday the week before Thanksgiving- when I finally gave him an ultimatum.
(we were supposed to leave the day before Thanksgiving (Wed.) to go to my in-laws for the holiday

Either have the work done by Tues. evening or we would call someone else to finish the job and he would only get his initial payment (half of the job + the money for the supplies he used). He asked if he could work through the weekend to which I said sure.

Hubby struggled with this- he is no handy man. But I was DONE! I was the one dealing with guy (when he showed up). The job was almost complete so he should have been able to complete it in the 5 days allocated.

He didn't. (Probably a blessing in disguise looking back)

When his worker showed up Wed. morning I told him that all of their equipment was on a tarp out back & covered with another tarp. I told him to tell his boss he did not meet the deadline and that we would find someone else to finish. Within the hour I received a phone call from him. I was civil, but told him thank you for the work completed but we would be finding someone else to finish- within the hour he had people there to pick up his tools.

The people we hired to come in and finish (mainly the plumbing) found that he had installed the toilet lines incorrectly and  had we not fired him and had them come in we would have had raw sewage backing up within the walls of our home from the kids bathroom on the second floor.

So ultimately it was a blessing that I finally trusted my gut and fired the jerk!

I later saw his pic on a watchdog list as a pedophile. 
(Yes I am SURE it was him)

So... this feeling I am having...

kind of freaks me out.
And I am slowly stockpiling canned foods, first aid supplies, water, etc.

Call me crazy, but *shrug*
I hope I AM paranoid!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Pennsylvania Dutch Cooking!

Our daughter Jenny found a butcher locally that had hog mauls so she wanted to learn how to make it.
What is hog maul you ask?   Well it is a Pennsylvania Dutch dish that many people no longer make.

Hog maul is a mixture of sausage, potatoes, onions, parsley all stuffed in a pigs stomach (the maul) and baked. I know it sounds gross to many, but if you can get past the maul- the sausage mixture is actually VERY tasty!The skin of the maul will get crispy like turkey skin. Personally I only eat the insides... the maul serves as a casing which keeps the sausage moist and keeps the flavor inside.

We took the pics using the camera on my phone so the quality isn't fantastic, but you can get the idea.

Here is how you make it...
First you cube the potatoes

Then you put them in a pot
Add water and then cook till tender, but not mushy
Chop onions

Get the sausage ready- I couldn't find loose sausage so I got link sausage and removed it from the casings.

Parsley- always use fresh- it makes a difference
Get the parsley ready
Add the potatoes to the onions
Add pepper
Add chopped parsley
Add onions, parsley, potatoes to the sausage
Get your hands in there and gently mix it all together

This is what it will look like mixed

The hog maul- yes it is gross....

Begin to stuff the sausage /potato/ onion mixture into the maul

Keep stuffing- kind of like stuffing a turkey

This is how it will look when it is stuffed-look how big it gets! Spray the pan with pam

Spray the mauls with pam and season on the outside with onion salt and pepper

Bake for 1.5- 2 hrs.




And serve

Serve with applesauce- and some also have cole slaw with it


Friday, September 21, 2012

Staying put!

This weekend is the first weekend in a month that we do not have to go ANYWHERE!

I am pretty excited... I enjoy visiting my kids and friends etc. but traveling every weekend means I have to do all the laundry during the week, as well as the grocery shopping etc. It means long trips driving and no sleeping in.

This weekend means time to putter around and do whatever I want, when I want- even if it is nothing at all! :)

I have a few jobs around the house that need done & some garden clean up that I really need to get on before the weather turns colder.

Additionally I really NEED to get my butt back in gear and get back to my running/jogging/shuffle ;)... I have slacked off these past few weeks. I gave myself the month of Sept. to get my school year started and allowed myself some slack, but now it is time to get back "on". I've been doing pretty well food wise, but I know that everything could head south if I do not get refocused and I have worked too hard to allow that to happen!

So here's to a good weekend! Make the most of it! ;)

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Life is good

As of August 5th of this year hubby and I have been "child free".

Our oldest was married Memorial Day weekend and lives about 10-15 min. away now with her new hubby and our two younger kids are both now in college. We were both admittedly a little nervous about it, and the first week or so DID seem a little strange. The house is so much quieter...

I recall hubby looking at me one evening that first week and saying "are we going to be able to do this?" to which I responded "we don't really have a choice do we?"

We have finally gotten into a groove and I have to tell you... to be honest...
this "just us" ROCKS!

Don't get me wrong, we dearly LOVE and miss our kids, but there is something really GREAT about being back to just the two of us.

We can now:

  • Eat what we want, when we want.
  • Things magically stay where we left them.
  • Our house actually stays pretty clean and uncluttered most of the time.
  • Our utility bills are lower.
  • Our food bill is significantly lower.
  • We are not paying for gas for anyone but us.
  • Our quality of food is better.
  • Go away for a weekend and not be concerned that there are any parties etc. going on without our knowledge.
I can honestly say  that life is really good now. 

I have always said the only things we really argued about were kid related- and this time since early August is proving that statement true. Hopefully I am not jinxing anything... :D