Friday, March 1, 2013

Seven Quick Takes: Art, Food, and Cardinals

--- 1 ---

The other day, I was showing off to Scott the fact that I've been conserving paper by printing multiple grocery lists on the same sheet. (I was going to post a picture, but the sheet was also the tail end of a Google Maps printout and has our full address neatly typed across the top, so no.) That segued into a discussion of how when I was little and was constantly asking for paper to draw upon, my mother would try to get me to draw on the backs of junk mail and the like. I always spurned this suggestion.

Scott apparently did the same thing when he was little. He totally agreed with me that you cannot create ART on the backs of old flyers.

I told you we're weird in awesomely compatible ways.

--- 2 ---

I made burritos earlier this week. This is what they look like before being folded up:

That's a dinner-plate-sized flour tortilla with 4 ounces of taco-seasoned ground beef and goodly portions of kidney beans and cheddar cheese. I ended up cutting the burritos in half after I folded them up because they were really big. Next time I will probably try the smaller corn tortillas.

Scott reports that they are good, but they need lettuce. And salsa.

--- 3 ---

I up and decided to join Pinterest the other day. I have my real name associated with the account, so, sadly, those of you who are not also my Facebook friends cannot watch me wildly pin ALL the frosting recipes! Don't worry; I'm sure you'll find a way to overcome your disappointment.

--- 4 ---

My grocery spending for February was 198.38. I think I've adapted to the lower basic food costs and now am buying fancier foods. (We had a pot roast at the beginning of February just because I felt like it. It was 3.49/lb) I'm also not going out of my way to save a couple of dollars--for example, buying ground beef for $2.49/lb at Aldi instead of 2.29/lb at GFS. Granted, if I buy 10 pounds that's a savings of $2, but only making two stops during my grocery runs is a lot better than making three or four.

(For the record: Our lower basic food costs are because I went on a diet. Did you know that eating low-carb can save you 10% of your grocery bill every month? Me neither. Apparently an endless parade of muffins actually costs money.)

--- 5 ---

The other day, I unilaterally decided that it has been far too long since we had pancakes around here. (Yes, I realize pancakes are made of carbs. Consistency, hobgoblin, little minds.) So on Monday I am going to make pancakes and sausage links for dinner, even though sausage links are all kinds of expensive. (Yes, I am firmly in the Breakfast for Dinner is Awesome camp. People seem to be passionately divided on this issue.)

Side story: I bought two packets of sausage at Aldi and realized only when I went to bag them up that one of them was maple-flavored. The nice cashier let me run back and switch it for a plain one. I told Scott this story, and he was disappointed...apparently he likes maple-flavored sausage. And no, he cannot just put syrup on the plain ones. That is all wrong and gross.

Oh well.

I also bought canned fruit, which is actually cheaper than fresh fruit, but it feels illicit somehow. I'm supposed to make everything from scratch, right? I should probably be canning my own fruit. Of course, in order to do that right I'd have to have my own garden, and the patio just isn't big enough for a year's worth of fruits and vegetables.

(It is getting toward pea-planting time over here. We'll see if I can keep them alive better than I did last year.)

I also bought Craisins, which are basically glorified candy, but I'm going to pretend they count as fruit too. I love Craisins.

--- 6 ---

This morning, I dropped Scott off at the bus stop as usual and came home and realized that it is the first. And a Friday.

So after I went on my grocery run I called him up at work and said, "Did you know you're singing at First Friday Mass tonight?"

Him: "That's good to know."

He took not-his-usual-bus to the church, and I made dinner a little early and drove down with some food and his Schola books and met him about half an hour before practice started and all was well.

Also, it was totally weird to have the priest pray for "our pope" without the name Benedict in front of that.

--- 7 ---

I don't have any new cute pictures of my siblings, so I'll post a cute story instead.

Some time ago, I was visiting my family and Teresa and I were lounging around in the living room, chatting. We got onto the topic of birds and she told me excitedly about this time she saw a red blue jay.

I suggested that perhaps she had seen a cardinal...they're birds, and they look just like blue jays, but red.

Teresa made sure to use her most sweetly patronizing voice, the one that says, "I know you big people are kind of slow, but do try to keep up while I explain things to you."

"No," she said. "It was a RED BLUE JAY."

Make sure you keep that in mind during the conclave. 

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!


Shakespeare's Cobbler said...

The two dangers with maple sausage are that it may be too sticky and it may be too sweet. (I believe it depends on the brand as much as anything else. And mind you, I will finish it even if it is too sticky or sweet, I just won't say let's have that again like I will when it's simply maple-flavored.)

However, if you make it by putting syrup on it, those aren't dangers, they're inevitabilities... or maybe just facts. Ergo...

Anonymous said...

The only proper way to achieve maple sausage is to swipe up the leftover real maple syrup from your plate with bites of sausage.

Hevel Cohen said...

Mmm, that burito looks really good.

Also, I usually sacrifice small savings. Driving across town for food that is slightly cheaper is so not worth it with the current gas prices (my country has the third highest in the world).

Hevel from

The Sojourner said...

In my case, all of the stores are lined up along the same street, but they are not close enough to each other that I can park once and walk to them all, and it's a pain to keep stopping and starting the car.

Melanie Bettinelli said...

I gave up going to different grocery stores long ago. Too much of a hassle not enough savings.

I think maple sausage and maple bacon are nasty. Once I bought some not realizing. Now I always double check.

I love the red blue jay. It reminds me of when Bella saw a cardinal in the yard and said, "I saw a Sean." Only funny in Boston when you know Cardinal Sean.

The Sojourner said...

I imagine that if I had five kids I'd be even less motivated to get in and out of the car. :)

I'm not sure one store would be better for me personally than two stores, though. Aldi is my favorite because it's small and therefore not horribly overstimulating, but the flip side of that is that it doesn't have the selection that the bigger stores do. But I can handle a "Go in, get the beans, get out of Dodge" mission in Meijer where I couldn't handle an hourlong stock-up-on-everything trip.

Also, Bella is hilarious. We don't have any of the other kinds of cardinals here, so Teresa is not familiar with them.