Thursday, August 26, 2010

A Broken Washing Machine is Never Romantic

Some ways of saving money are so picturesque. My last post on homemade butter churns up (note the pun) such nostalgic memories of bygone eras; ladies in cute dresses; sitting out in the barn with the cows; mixing that cream again and again in the early morning sunrise. Even a broken dryer can evoke such fond thoughts of hanging the washing out on the line...sun shining through...happy children running in and out of the's so beautiful, I think I may have seen it on TV.

However, our washing machine is broken, and nothing about it is romantic. Here's the problem: it fills with water, it rinses, and it empties of water; but the motor is broken and nothing agitates. I hate the thought of lugging the loads of wet clothes home from the laundromat, so I've been filling the tub and scrubbing the stuff by hand for a good ten minutes and then letting it soak and rinse on its own. After one or two loads of being up to my elbows in soapy water, scrubbing up and down, and sweating, I'm really hoping we're done with this soon. I can evoke no romantic memories of ladies from years past with washbasins doing a similar thing. And I can tell you, it's nothing like those sirens in the river from "O Brother Where Art Thou?"

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

A Really Fun Money Saving Tip

So I was doing my normal Costco shopping last week, and butter was on the list. Imagine my dismay when Costco up and jumped the price of their butter, the 4-lb. pack, an entire dollar! I was irritated and didn't want to pay the new $8.50 price.

Then I remembered a little trip to a farm demonstration show at the county fairgrounds in June. They showed how easy it was to turn whipping cream into butter with a KitchenAid. Hmmm...and how much was a half gallon of whipping cream? Only $5.50 for the same weight (4 pounds) as the butter! So I took it home, and here's what we got:

Put about 2 c. of whipping cream in your KitchenAid with the whisk attachment (a food processor would also work).

Beat on medium-high speed for 10 minutes.

It will go through several stages: first it looks like whipped cream, then a chunkier version (almost like creamed butter). Keep an eye on it when it gets close to the end--when you see the milk liquid (skim milk) separate itself from the solid you have BUTTER! And it's the sweetest creamiest stuff you can't buy.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

The Song that Makes My Son Burst into Tears

On top of spaghetti
All covered with cheese
I lost my poor meatball
when somebody sneezed.

It rolled on the table
and onto the floor
and then my poor meatball
rolled out the front door.

It rolled in the garden
and under a bush.
And now my poor meatball
is nothing but mush.

Why does this make him cry? I have no idea. He's four and has sympathetic feelings for the meatball? He loves meat so much he hates to see it wasted? Who knows? Anyway, he burst into tears after this song tonight, mumbling something about the meatball. Not just a few tears either, weepy like anything.