Tag Archives: sewing

The Ol’ Bag Lady Has Dinner in the Bag

 

New readers may not know that I am fondly called The Ol’ Bag Lady” by my husband.  Sometimes, he shortens it to just “Ol’ Bag.”  He may or may not be referring to my attitude, but certainly he is referring to my love for bags to organize my life.

bags 005

For years (OK, I have to admit, I should use the term decades here), I’ve sewn drawstring bags to organize toys at home, in the car and to use as gift bags for toys I give away.

 

bags, floor 019

An organizing series I wrote a few years back was called Flying Frantic, which describes the lives of most women.  We have more people, projects and personal goals than we know what to do with.  The post on using tote bags to organize your life according to commitments was popular. I have one bag for church, one bag for homeschool coop and one bag of special things for my daughter in the car.

This Ol’ Bag Lady has found one more way to organize using bags – this time in the kitchen.

There are amazing women  who cook a month of meals at a time and throw them in the freezer.  Sounds like a great idea, but my family is not particularly fond of food that has been frozen.

“The noodles are mushy.”

“The hamburger tastes funny.”

And those were just my complaints.   I know, picky, picky, but there is nothing like a freshly cooked meal.  It’s just another thing to fit in a busy life. It’s easier to dream than do.

There are other amazing women who plan a week of meals and shop according to their meal plan.  I stand in awe.

Then, there are women like me.  I shop with a list and still forget items. The week I plan the entire menu is the week my husband ends up traveling out of town.  I grocery shop, but am too tired to cook dinner. I am embarrassed to admit how many days 4pm rolls around, or 5pm, and I’m slapping my forehead thinking, “UGH! Why do people in this house need to eat dinner every. single. night?”

We have a few standby crock-pot recipes, but it never fails, I run to the pantry and find I am short one item. Or I discover somebody put the spice jar back in the drawer, but it was empty. GGRRReat!

That’s when I had my Light bulb moment.

blogging adventures 004

Yep, I have children.  My stapler never works correctly.  And I was lucky to find the black Sharpie in my junk drawer without stabbing myself with a rusty nail or box cutter.  Not Pinterest pretty, but Got ‘Er Dun pretty.

White Chicken Chili Bag

The ingredients for one meal were bagged with the recipe, the ingredients to be added highlighted in case anybody else wanted to make dinner. Anybody? Anybody?

blogging adventures 086

The only ingredients purchased and added to the stuff in the bag.

Mindy’s White Chicken Chili

Sauté until soft, about 5 min:

  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 medium green pepper, minced
  • 1 large onion, chopped

Add and sauté another minute:

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder

Add and simmer:

  • 4 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 limes, juiced

Add:

  • 2 (14.5-ounce) cans white beans(drain, mash one slightly)
  • 1 rotisserie chicken, remove skin and shred meat

Although this is called “chili” it is more of a chicken and bean soup.  It is quick, easy and filling on a cold, rainy day, which is nearly every day during the winter in the Pacific Northwest. We serve with sour cream and grated cheese.

The other recipe  I bagged up for the pantry is the Southwest Roast.

blogging adventures 006

It’s one of the few recipes I have blogged, I’m not really a recipe kinda’ girl.

.kinghorns 018

The Southwest Roast with the Special Ingredient was another popular post because the recipe is simple and delicious.  You start is 24 hours ahead of time, so when you’re cleaning up dinner one night, you throw the ingredients for tomorrow’s dinner in the crock and go to bed. 

If you get a little organized with your family’s  favorite recipes, you can have dinner in the bag.

Making your home sing Mondays               WHWButton#2

Decked Out Like A Princess

Poor Princess Kate.

She went shopping after the baby was born and it was news. Wait, everything she does is news in England.

I went shopping last  week and nobody cared, except for the kids at home that were waiting for the toilet paper.

 

image

I found this on the GLAM blog and was very impressed with the identification and price information. Even if I could see the clothing labels, I wouldn’t know what they meant.  I don’t speak fashion.  But, I’m confident her Saks isn’t the same as my “all you can fit in a sack for $3” at the thrift store.

Princess Kate spent $480.40 for one outfit, not including undergarments because, thankfully, the paparazzi couldn’t get that close.

The only thing I’ve ever worn that cost that much is the scar on my neck from an expensive total thyroidectomy.

My mom raised six kids and had a passion to make sure we were always clean and stylish, even if our clothes weren’t expensive or new to us.  An excellent seamstress with an amazing ability to create or re-create anything, she sewed, shopped, altered and mended her six kids through adulthood.

We always looked nice, accept when someone loudly exerted their free will and Mom allowed them bear the consequences of what they wore in public. Like the time one sister fussed until Mom brought her to the grocery store wearing one cowboy boot, one sandal, a dress over a pair of holey-kneed jeans (when holes weren’t in style) and uncombed hair.   But I won’t tell you which sister because she hated being the baby of the family and being teased. But I will tell you, she never dressed like that again.

Once Mom bought bright t-shirt material covered with the flags of the world on clearance and made matching t-shirts for the kids for vacation.  We were walking around feeling pretty spiffy when we overheard someone say to their friend, “Wow, those people must be rich.”

One of our favorite pastimes was dressing up for an event, then calculating the cost of each outfit, just like they did for the Princess.   It was rarely over a few dollars.  The most expensive item was usually our unders, but maybe I shouldn’t mention unmentionables on a Christian blog.

My Mom was a woman before her times.  She upcycled, recycled, crafted and created, but never gathered a following because the Internet wasn’t invented yet.  If digital photo editing and Pinterest were available in the 70’s, a post about getting presentable for Grandma Geneva’s visit in 1973 would look something like the following: 

Brainard Kids with Gramma 73

1.  Joel – Decked out in jeans from J.C. Penney’s for $2.99 and crew-necked  t-shirt from Salvation Army for $.29 = $3.28.

2.  Melinda – Modeling a white polyester bodysuit and purple polyester pants created by her mother.  Size 24 purple pants  Salvation Army $.10 (remade for size 8slim) + plastic buckle from button jar + $.29 for snaps + $.49 for a yard of white polyester = $.88.

3. Allan – Sears Toughskin jeans, probably reinforced with canvas by mother because he was tougher than Toughskin jeans, cool red print pirate-sleeved shirt with extra pointy collars topped with a knitted sweater vest.  Jeans $4.99 + hand-me-down shirt and vest $.00  = $4.99.

4.  Angela – Hand-me-down red corduroy dress accented with eyelet cuffs and collar = $.00.

5.  Laurie – Hand-me-down hot pink mini-dress $.00 + adorned by Mom with braided trim $.30 =$.30.

6.  Lee – After winning the battle to have hair longer than his ears, was proudly wearing a green, tan and rust geometric patterned button-down shirt sewn by Mom with for $.98  +  lint-trapping olive green cords for $3.99 from Tempo Department Store = $4.97.

___________________________________

Children’s clothing…………………………………………$14.42

A thrifty Mom who dressed you like a princess…..PRICELESS