All posts for the month March, 2013

Planning ahead

Published March 24, 2013 by z24racerchic

I am getting more freaked out and kind of scared. No, I am not paranoid, but take a good look around what is going on. Have you seen what has went on in Greece? What about Cyprus? Do you have alternative methods if this stuff happened here in the USA?

My focus of this year has shifted greatly. I do want to be selfish for a minute and go on a couple day trip this summer. I feel we won’t be going on one for a long time after. I am doing everything I can to get the money for this. My other goals are to purchase bigger ticket items that need replacing example my 50 year old stovetop and oven (no exagerting they are that old), buying a freezer and a dishwasher. I am afraid what will happen when Obamacare kicks in fully next year.

I am suprised at the bubble people live in. Not knowing what is going on in their own country and frankly not caring. Just thinking everything will be okay. Besides the things mentined above a huge garden is going in and I plan on learning to can. I do need a pressure canner yet. I have plans for a large large garden. I have also been stockpiling several things that I get on sale. THe more the better.

To do this in a small house is also taking some organizing. I am decluttering. Please, if you don’t know the things that are going on, check it out. It is scary.


Light bulbs and garden planning part II

Published March 23, 2013 by z24racerchic

So for the past couple of years I have been hoarding, er I mean stockpiling regular incadescent light bulbs. Why you may ask? Because I don’t want to wear a hasmat suit in case one of the CFL bulbs breaks. Okay, so that isn’t my only reason. I simply don’t like flourescent bulbs. I work under them 8.5 hours a day and I will be dang if I want to see them at home. The flickering they do gives me a headache. The fact that they have mercury in them and if they break you need special clean up instructions makes me sick. How is this any better for the environment? Since I heard that legislation was going to do away with the old incadescent bulbs I have been buying them and storing them. Yes, I have a good supply and will continue to grab as many as I can until they are done away with completely. A great example would be today I went to CVS with my extrabucks, CVS red machine coupons and 20% off coupon and got two boxes. It said on the front of the package that the cost of the lightbulb per year was $7 and some odd cents. Really?!?!?!?

Second part of my title garden planning. I had placed a order with Gurneys because of a coupon. I have 2lbs potatoes coming to plant, one garlic bulb and strawberry plants and oh yeah red onions. After I relooked up my order and realized that garlic would hardly due for the canning I am planning on I got another package at Lowe’s and today three more packages at Wal-Mart. I also got 160 bulbs of green onions that I plan to put in a raised bed. I am assuming without opening my garlic that I have about 50 cloves to plant. I am wanting at least 50 more. I want to can it minced. My mom also told me that my dad used to plant garlic around his apple trees not to eat or harvest, but to keep the animals away. So, besides our fence I am going to outline the garden in garlic and onions.

I have no idea the effect or if this will be good or bad. Trial and error is what I say. So I will keep you posted. In the meantime since it feels like winter here in rural PA I am hiding my garlic and onions in the dark cool closet to keep them kind of in hiding until it warms a bit. Not to mention we just bought a new monster tiller at an estate sale for $35 that needs some maintenence.

I am excited to can and learn the tricks of the trade. Of course, now I need to get a pressure canner…. I have seeds for green beans, wax beans, corn, popcorn, sunflowers (to use as bird feed), zucchini, pickle cucumbers, regular cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, and some herbs, watermelon, a midget melon for planting in pots and of course the garlic, onions, potatoes and strawberries. If the weather breaks we also need to plan our raised beds for the green onions and strawberries.

I will never buy boxed brownie mix again..homemade goodness

Published March 10, 2013 by z24racerchic

I saw on a blog a receipe for easy homemade brownies. I was skeptical. Of course, I had nothing to lose because I have never had success in making brownies from the box. The sides are always rock hard and they don’t taste that great. I have found a new indulgence from the following receipe. From

■1 cup granulated sugar
■1/2 cup butter, softened
■1/2 teaspoon vanilla
■2 eggs
■1/2 cup unsifted all-purpose flour, unbleached, unbromated
■1/3 cup cocoa
■1/4 teaspoon baking powder
■1/4 teaspoon salt
■1/2 cup chopped nuts, optional

Directions: In a medium bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Add eggs and vanilla, blend until smooth. In a separate bowl, sift together dry ingredients. Gradually blend dry ingredients into sugar mixture, stirring until just blended. Do not overmix. Nuts may be added at this time, or sprinkled over some or all of the batter in the pan just prior to baking.

Spread batter evenly in a greased 8 inch square baking pan, or an 8 inch round or heart shaped pan or double the batch and use a 9×13 pyrex baking dish.

Bake metal pans 30-35 minutes at 350 degrees F, glass pans 30-35 minutes at 335 degrees, until edges are set. Watch your oven times. Mine cooks higher than others so I checked mine at 20 minutes and at 25 minutes and they were done. Just stick a toothpick in the center and see if it comes out clean. Center will be soft but will firm up at the brownies cool. DON’T OVERBAKE! Only the edges should be set up when you take the pan out of the oven. If they’re coming out on the dry side, bake them for less time or drop the temp, or both. I always bake in a heavy glass pan, so that takes longer to bake then metal, and doesn’t dry out as quickly.

THese are sooo soo much better than any box mix and softer and just have a great taste. My mom when I told her about them said “See why my generation was spoiled on home cooking.” yeah I do mom, Yes I do…

Banana bread..flame retardant and yellow #5

Published March 9, 2013 by z24racerchic

So sorry I haven’t been blogging to my followers, but my carpal tunnel has been doing a number on me and being a Health Information Management person with electronic records and dabbling in billing during my day job my hand has been having problems and typing….not so good. I have adapted to using a mouse strictly with my left hand. Oh joy, oh joy.  Though I am not quite ambidexterous, I am getting the hang of it. 

First off after my white bread recipe I have tried a banana bread recipe because I went to Aldi’s and bought 3 packages of bananas.  We had almost a dozen leftovers and I decided to make a double batch of banana bread.  I thought something was missing from the recipe.. Here it is.

Banana Banana Bread

Adapted from


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 6 mashed medium overripe bananas


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan. (My 9×5 pan is currently scratched out of commission and so I used two 8×5 pans which you can also do, but I prefer the one big 9×5 loaf.)
  2. In a large bowl, combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. In a separate bowl, use an electric mixer to cream together butter and brown sugar. Stir in eggs and mashed bananas until well blended. Stir banana mixture into flour mixture; stir just to moisten, do not over-mix. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan.
  3. Bake in preheated oven for 60 to 65 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into center of the loaf comes out clean. Let bread cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack.

Bread tastes even better the next day. To store, simply wait for it to cool completely and then wrap in plastic wrap.

I asked my mom the next day “what is wrong with it?”. She said nothing except missing the nuts (which my parents and husband cant eat because of dental problems).  I said “I put in pecan meal.”  I think it was missing vanilla.  I am going to try that, though my mom and husband swears it was missing nothing at all.  It was good, just seemed to be missing a little sweetness. 

Second topic flame retardant. I don’t know… Does Mountain Dew fear we are going to spontaneously combust? I saw a page on Facebook post about their being a flame retardant in Mt. Dew.  I heard it before, though I ignored it.  Today I went and looked at the Mt. Dew and saw…the flame retardant. Yes, this 2 liter will be my last.  I don’t belive in wasting stuff so…. ICK.  Look it up. 

Third topic..#5.  Look on and you will find that there is a petition to get Kraft Macarioni & Cheese to stop using Yellow dye #5.  This is I belive linked to bladder cancer.  In the UK it is banned and they using a natural coloring.  why can’t they use that her in the states. I seriously wonder the link between cancers and obesity to this crap in our food.  I will only buy organic mac and cheese from now on or make my own.  Little changes= big steps to health.  Have a good weekend everyone!

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