Thursday, April 22, 2010

Beans ala Domestica

I did it! Mark off another accomplishment on the Domestic Goddess checklist.

I have a habit of buying dry beans. Do I have any idea how to prepare them? No, not really. But they are a good food storage item, and they are so much cheaper and better for you than the canned beans. I buy canned beans in the same shopping trip as the dried beans. Does that make me extra prepared?

I finally decided I had to learn this skill. I remember Aunt Scottie preparing and cooking beans at the beach. Why didn't I ask and learn then? Oh yeah, I was a teenage twit. I found a great tutorial that seemed simple and fail proof.

Last night I sorted and pulled out the broken beans and the rocks, just like the directions said. Why on earth are there rocks in with beans? If technology can dismiss the substandard Cheeto before it gets to the bag, why can't technology get rid of the rocks? I'll solve that mystery later. Right along with where all the socks go.

Oh yeah, beans. I sorted and got my hands dirty. Dirty, dirty beans. Then soaked them in hot water in my super huge and oh-so-nice Pampered Chef 6 quart bowl. This morning I drained and rinsed them. And I discovered the wretched little black beans turned my bowl black. Eventually it did come clean. Otherwise, I might never attempt fixing my own beans again. Lucky little beans.

Beans, the point of this story. Sorry. They cooked on the stove for a long time. They boiled over and made a mess of my stove top. They bubbled and spit on the back of my stove. They made a big black mess. Should have taken a picture.

They were done, finally. Not like I did anything but stir them once in a while. The tutorial didn't say to stir, but it made me feel better. Then I started bagging them. And I burned my right hand. I overfilled the measuring cup and the hot bean liquid sloshed back all over my hand. Note to self and lesson learned. Ouch is all I have to say about that one. A friend suggested shocking them in a bowl of ice water before putting them in the freezer to prevent gritty beans later. Nobody likes gritty beans.

I now have 5 bags of black beans in my freezer just waiting to be added to some rice in a burrito. I even saved some for my lunch today.

My kitchen was a mess, but now all dishes are clean. The counters and stove are all clean and black bean free. Go me!

No more cans for me. Unless I forget to do the next batch of beans and need to fix dinner now and don't have any beans ready and call my mom to see if she has any she can bring or send my fabulous husband to the store to save my tail again because I am a dingbat and can't figure out how to plan ahead or replace something when my stash is running low. But that is a whole other post for another day.

For now, I am one step closer to becoming a Domestic Goddess. And I have about a dozen more bags of dried beans in my pantry just waiting to be prepared and stashed in the freezer. I feel healthier and more frugal already.

Wednesday, April 07, 2010


I rarely win anything, but I WON! A blog I follow is a great money saving blog with all kinds of tips and ideas and deals that are seriously helping my budget. She is really funny too, and she drives a Suburban, so I have to like her. Seriously, go check her out. It'll be fun. Yesterday she offered a can of Shelf Reliance taco TVP on her blog. I won!!! If you have no idea what Shelf Reliance is, take a look. I so want the can rotating systems. They also have tons of dehydrated, freeze dried, and other food, as well as lots of food storage and self reliance items. Need a year supply? You can order an entire year with one click. They make it super easy.

Back to my story. I had been planning to order a can of something at a time, just to see if the family would like it. If they won't eat it, it isn't food storage, just wasted space. Lo and behold, the fabulous Tiffany offers up a can of one of the exact items I wanted to try. Of course I was going to enter, but certainly not expecting to win. Thanks so much Tiffany for getting us started on this part of our food storage and year supply venture. If you need dish washing tabs or paper towels, we've got you covered.

Also, if you decide Shelf Reliance is for you, get up with Tiffany and place an order. She is a new consultant with Shelf Reliance, and I am all about supporting independent consultants. Pampered Chef, anyone? Call me :)

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Have You Ever Wondered...

I meant to post this last night. Oh well.

Have you ever wondered what happens when your kids get up before you do?

They will help themselves to the chocolate cake that is sitting on the counter. They will eat it in the living room and get crumbs all over the carpet. They will turn on the TV and watch cartoons when they both know they are not allowed to watch TV. They may have had some grapes too.

While doing all this they will leave you alone and let you sleep until 8:30.

Let them eat cake! And then give the baby a cupcake for breakfast when he wakes up, because it is only fair.

Have you ever wondered what happens when a wet diaper gets thrown up at the ceiling?

Wonder no more. I even have pictures to answer the question.

Yes, while I was teaching and they were supposedly having naps and quiet time, the older hooligans trashed their room. They also came down and interrupted my lesson, but that is another issue. Dress ups everywhere, toy box from one end of the room to the other. And an exploded diaper all over the room. Ceiling, floor, stuck to the dresser and window, on the window sill... everywhere. Lucky for someone, who I am not exactly sure, I forgot to change the vacuum bag the day before.

I am not sure if I prefer this kind of exploded diaper or the blowout kind of exploded diaper. I do know I prefer neither.

The evidence, after toys and dress ups were already cleaned up.

Have you ever wondered what happens to hooligans like this at the end of the day?

After several time outs and dinner they were sent upstairs for bed. The house was entirely too quiet. Hooligans and silence can't be a good thing.

Maybe it can.

My fabulous husband called me upstairs when he went up to investigate. Oh dear, what have they done now?!?! I look in the room and see two sweet, not so little hooligans curled up in their bed, under the covers, snoring. Not even five minutes and they were both out cold at 6:30.

Have you ever wondered what it feels like to want to strangle your hooligans and give them away one minute and just stand and watch their angelic and awe inspiring countenance the next?

Come to my house and find out. I promise, it won't be boring, and it will definitely be worth it.