Showing posts from August, 2013

Moving: When one piece of stress is over, it brings new ones and other such lessons

Well after two weeks of apartment hunting, we are ecstatic to announce that we were approved for an apartment today! It was a bit of a nerve-wracking experience, as we are not the most predictable renters. A year and change of "not really renting" + Mr. Moon's former landlord being no longer of this world + my lack of rental history and crappy credit score + Mr. Moon just starting a new job = skittish landlord. But he approved us and that's all that's important right now. We pick up the keys tomorrow!

Now that we have a Place in mind, it's on to strategizing the long-distance move. This is where my organizational skills come in handy, but my lack of body capabilities makes things difficult. Thankfully we have a number of good friends who are caring, strong, and follow directions well so it's just a matter of getting them into the right places at the right times and knowing what I want them to do.

Of course, there are some things I want to do better for th…

Making Choices: What we skip or skimp to make room for things like morals and munchies

Young House Love posed the question about things we skip (or skimp) to save money. I started to comment but then it got reeeeallly long so I thought I would put it up here and make a shorter list in my comment. Now, my title talks about morals because some of these choices for reusable things instead of  disposable are environmentally motivated as well as financially. As I've mentioned before, Mr. Moon responds to financial motivation more than anything, but over the last three years we BOTH have come around to being more willing to do things primarily for the Bigger Picture benefits outside our own small lives. Gardening is one of those things we have tried to do for something bigger than ourselves, with only meager success.

Subscription TV: I haven't paid for it in 9 years, Mr. Moon and his roommates had done away with it years before I met them. I watch seasons of TV shows when they come out on DVD, have Blockbuster and now more recently Netflix, so for $16 a month I have DV…

How do you recover from the disappointment of getting scammed?

This announcement is a bit sullied, but Mr. Moon and I are ecstatic to announce we will be moving back to Seattle. This of course comes with apartment hunting, not the most exciting of activities and worse yet from 200 miles away.

The mister and I may have gotten caught up in a Craigslist scam. There were a couple red flags along the way, which made me ensure I asked a lot of questions, had solid answers for everything, did some research and recon, and didn't reveal too much personal information too soon.

Well, we still may have gotten caught. I don't know if there will be any identity theft issues, they didn't get much information. But we did waste two days and a LOT of emotional investment to potentially getting an apartment we really wanted, and now we have to start all over. I AM happy to be able to say that we did not exchange any money. The worst blow right now is to my pride.

It's frustrating. I'm grateful to my dad for being another pair of eyes to go over …

Story Time Recipe: Gumbo

Once upon a time, I decided I wanted to make Gumbo. I'd never had gumbo before, and I wanted to try it. So I looked up about 100 different recipes, and figured out what they all had in common:

Roux, especially a peanut butter rouxMirepoixStock, mostly chicken stockSpiceAndouille sausage (in most of them)Shrimp (also in most but not all) Well, I had no idea what half of that was. So I started asking questions. 
What is a roux? It's a thickening agent for sauces and soups. It's a mixture of equal parts fat and flour. You melt the fat and mix the flour into it slowly so as to avoid lumps. Works best if you sift the flour directly into the fat. You can use pretty much any fat, but lard, bacon grease and butter are preferred. All purpose flour is best, but gluten-free websites have other suggestions with good results and you can use whole wheat for some things but you may have to adjust your proportions and thickening expectancy. It is great for anything you want to have a cream…

To Do List: August Quarterly Update

A nice, updated list after the second quarter of the year has gone by. I highlighted our highest priorities in red, the things we are working on now or will be in the next few weeks. Deleted the old Done list, what's crossed off is done since our last updated To Do list in April.

Front Yard:
Re-edge the existing beds, and refill with wood chips as needed--not buying more though!Prune roses. All the roses. Possibly use the pruned bits to grow roots on new plants, potentially even to replace the existing ones that aren't in the best shape. Fill the beds with flowers. What we have now leaves most of the yard bare most of the time, I'd like to landscape in such a way as to have something blooming most of the time and not ever have to look at a bunch of rotting yuck. Mum has decided to hire contractors to relandscape the entire front yard because the project has gotten too big to manage. I approve!Back Yard: Plant the toilet planter or get rid of it. (Half done.)Prune the roses al…

Daily Accomplishments


Successfully got all the daily chores doneShopped all the groceries for the week in the hot, muggy sunshinePicked up some crafting supplies for a project in the worksWashed all the laundryI count walking through the grocery store as part of my physical therapy for the week. Relaxed with a game of cards (rummy) where I came back from a first-hand 80 point deficit to win the game! Wednesday: Finished drying the laundryMr. Moon went with his parents to check out replacement grills for their broken oneI took a lovely nap! And then discovered that an ice pack on the forehead really helps with that post-nap hangover-like headacheForgot to water the gardenFolded all the laundry and got it put away! This is a bloody miracle!  What we did not do today? The kitchen. Again. Second week in a row with his new work schedule. Looks like we will be fiddling with chores again to get that kitchen scrubbing onto a different day. I know I keep saying that part of this process is being flexible and…

Perfection and the art of forgivennes; Daily Accomplishments

There are so many things I want to do that fall under "daily journaling" and I have never been very good at that. I'd like to do a quick, one paragraph/5 bullet points entry on this blog every day about what we did around the homestead, but I'm afraid I would end up losing steam and feeling like a failure. Of course now that I've said that "out loud," it almost feels like failing even more not to even try. But if I've tried something similar a bunch of times with less than stellar results, is it failure to save my energy?

I know that I struggle with perfection, and the phrase "do it right or don't do it at all" was oft uttered toward me in my childhood. So at least I come by it honestly! But I think accepting a certain amount of imperfection in our lives IS doing it right. Being able to forgive ourselves as easily as we forgive others is difficult, a lifelong lesson, and one worth learning. I'm hard on myself, and that's why t…

Laundry Soap

First off, I have been dealing with a bunch of fatigue and lack of creativity. For a while now. It's why I haven't posted about the plum project that we worked so hard on. I don't know if I'm just burned out on it or what, but I feel like I have nothing to say about it. Maybe I should just post the pictures without commentary. 

I also promised a discussion about the Oat Dough I made, but then I discovered my oats had been rancid before I used them and the stuff tasted nasty. So I didn't even have a good product to discuss. I am really winning this week, huh?

But one thing did go right!

I have been meaning to make my own laundry soap for about two years now. Unfortunately, Mr. Moon has trouble gauging when he needs to add laundry soap to the shopping list, and waits until we are completely out on/right before laundry day and we don't have time for experiments like making laundry soap. Combine that with trouble finding the ingredients, and it's taken two years…